Showing posts with label the economy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label the economy. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 31, 2009


No one needs any more signs that the economy is in miserable shape. Nonetheless, one particular sign caught our attention. It was taped to the front window of a no-name clothing outlet store in Greenwich Village, on Bleecker Street just east of Seventh Avenue South. A clothing store in Greenwich Village advertised 20 percent off for customers whose names 'made the Madoff’s List.' Few have taken advantage of it. 'Madoff’s Victims Sale,' it said. 'Take an extra 20 percent off if your name made the Madoff’s list." (The New York Times)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Reverend Billy investigates how the downturn is having an impact on local businesses ("Stay out of the national chains!")

Thanks to the tipster who passed along this link...

Mayoral candidate Reverend Billy talks with business owners on East Ninth Street on how they're coping with the recession. This was filmed as part of the Uncommon Economic Indicator project with the Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


"In just the seven months since the stock market began to plummet, the recession has aimed its death ray not just at the credit market, the Dow and Detroit, but at the very ethos of conspicuous consumption. Even those with a regular income are reassessing their spending habits, perhaps for the long term. They are shopping their closets, downscaling their vacations and holding off on trading in their cars. If the race to have the latest fashions and gadgets was like an endless, ever-faster video game, then someone has pushed the reset button." (The New York Times)

Monday, November 10, 2008

The way we live (drink) now

From New York magazine's Recession Index this week:

Approximate number of cans of Pabst Blue Ribbon ($3 each, the cheapest drink) sold at Max Fish in a week:

JULY 2008: 480

OCTOBER 2008: 960

Stat of the day

Just three applications for new buildings were filed in Manhattan in September, compared to 23 in September 2007 -- a staggering 87 percent plunge, city Department of Buildings data shows. (New York Post)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

You know it's a recession when...

East Village resident Paige Ferrari, 26, was one of the 35 employees who lost their jobs when Radar abruptly folded a few weeks back. In a piece in the Times today, she talks about the layoffs and the future. Among the obnservations:

You picture the layoffs as “Oh, I worked at the plant for 10 years, and then they didn’t want me to make this certain wheel part anymore.” Not people in this sort of cushy industry — maybe it’s a trickle-up thing? It’s starting to affect the yuppies in the East Village. That’s when you know it’s a recession: when your yuppie neighbors are going on unemployment.


I came home one day and my roommate was trying to call unemployment. That’s when I still had a job, so I was very smug. He was trying to call unemployment to get his unemployment money, but he couldn’t get through the menu because he had just got a new iPhone. So he was trying to find the keypad on the new iPhone. I was like, “I don’t think the unemployment menu is set up for people with iPhones.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The ice storm

In downtown Manhattan, two artists, Marshall Reese and Nora Ligorano sculpted the word "ECONOMY" from a block of ice to symbolize the economic downfall
. The 1500 lbs. of ice was put on display in front of the Supreme Court and marked the day the stock market crashed that led to the Great Depression 79 years ago. (New York Post)

Might as well dance.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Is this something to worry about?

The Citibank branch on 120 Broadway in the Financial District is selling bowls of fruit salad in the lobby for $2.50.

An end to the real estate boom

Excerpts from a Times piece titled "Failed Deals Replace Real Estate Boom:"

After seven years of nonstop construction, skyrocketing rents and sales prices, and a seemingly endless appetite for luxury housing that transformed gritty and glamorous neighborhoods alike, the credit crisis and the turmoil on Wall Street are bringing New York’s real estate boom to an end.

It is hard to say exactly what the long-term impact will be, but real estate experts, economists and city and state officials say it is likely there will be far fewer new construction projects in the future, as well as tens of thousands of layoffs on Wall Street, fewer construction jobs and a huge loss of tax revenue for both the state and the city.

After imposing double-digit rent increases in recent years, landlords say rents are falling somewhat, which could hurt highly leveraged projects, but also slow gentrification in what real estate brokers like to call “emerging neighborhoods” like Harlem, the Lower East Side and Fort Greene.

“Any continued impediment to the credit markets is awful for the national economy, but it’s more awful for New York,” said Richard Lefrak, patriarch of a fourth-generation real estate family that owns office buildings and apartment houses in New York and New Jersey.

“This is the company town for money,” he said. “If there’s no liquidity in the system, it exacerbates the problems. It’s going to have a serious effect on the local economy and real estate values.”

Friday, September 26, 2008

Wall Street week in review: Monday

So, how was your week? As I've written before, I work in the Financial District, though my job has nothing to do with financials (or districts). Or Wall Street. Anyway, as you read here exclusively last week, things aren't going so well on Wall Street. But seriously, this past week was -- for a lack of a better word -- interesting. I noticed this giddy undercurrent while walking around. Especially among the tourists, who sensed they were witnessing history. And there was no shortage of activity, which is documented in subsequent posts.
On Monday, a small group (uh, four) of Ron Paul's Campaign for Liberty volunteers took to the steps of Federal Hall to voice displeasure over the Fed's bajillion dollar bailout proposal.

[For the record, that is NOT my thumb with the dirty nail...]

Also! Reporters and various rubberneckers stood outside the Federal Reserve on Maiden Lane to look at some well-dressed white people in suits. They were waiting to see Hillary Clinton.

And I think we all know why there was such commotion at the Fed...the missing gold!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Why strippers are all "moaning and groaning" at the Penthouse Executive Club

Wall Street's financial crisis has trickled down to Manhattan's mammary meccas. A source tells us jiggle joints all over the city are seeing a drop in business, with fewer customers, less bar traffic and a drop in lap dances. "The strippers at Penthouse Executive Club are all moaning and groaning," one insider tells us. "They say they aren't making anything at all since the market crashed." (Page Six)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Down and out in NYC

Headline from today's Wall Street Journal:

As Times Turn Tough, New York's Wealthy Economize:
Plastic Surgeons, Jewelers, Yacht Builders Brace for Leaner Times; Saying No to Caviar

And the first few parargraphs:

A nose job in a hospital with a private nurse in attendance had been something of a rite of passage for Joan Asher's children. But when her fourth and last child was ready for her own rhinoplasty recently, Ms. Asher asked her to postpone it.
The financial markets were simply more out of whack than her 16-year-old's proboscis.
"The other noses were more prominent," the stay-at-home mother from a tony New York City suburb in Westchester County told her 16-year-old daughter. She could get hers done when things settled down.
The financial crisis on Wall Street has New York's well-to-do reeling.

Friday, September 19, 2008


The city’s unemployment rate rose to 5.8 percent from 5 percent in July — the largest monthly increase in more than 30 years — as about 5,200 private-sector jobs were eliminated . . . Many of the layoffs came in the tumbling financial sector, which is one of the city’s biggest employers and the provider of nearly one-fourth of its annual wages and salaries. (New York Times)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Despite economic downturn in city, expect four more American Apparel stores

In a piece titled "City Feels the Economic Pinch, but It’s Only a Pinch, So Far" in the Times today, Kathryn S. Wylde, chief executive of the Partnership for New York City, described the City's current economic climate: “[I]t’s not a crash like the Great Depression. It is a gradual letting the air out of the balloon, an economy that is deflating. And that could be a process that’s 2 years or 10 years for New York.”

Meanwhile, as the article notes, some businesses are hurting while some chains are continuing with plans to open more stores.

Take the case of American Apparel . . . It has opened two stores in New York City in 2008 and plans to open four more before year end, according to Adrian Kowalewski, the company’s director of corporate finance and development.

“We haven’t seen anything but an increase in our business, despite the slowdown in the overall economy,” Mr. Kowalewski said. “Many of our customers are young, urban dwellers, and so are not as exposed directly to increases in fuel prices or the meltdown in the housing market."