Written by Adrianne Madden
Thursday, 31 July 2008
Manny is being Manny again. And Exxon is being Exxon.
Here in the Northeast, the heart of Red Sox Nation, we're watching Hall of Fame slugger Manny Ramirez wear out his welcome because he's pouting over his contract status. In the final year of an eight-year deal that has paid him $160 million, the left fielder is disgruntled because the ball club hasn't yet picked up an option year for 2009, which is good for another $20 million.
Imagine being reluctant to pick up the option for a 36-year-old head case whose hitting stats declined last year, and who can be an adventure in the outfield and on the bases. The nerve!
Yet you know he and his agent think they can get more money and a multi-year deal if Manny goes elsewhere. And you think, man, he's already made $160 million. How much money does he need? How much is enough?
Well, as we like to say when he pulls one of his head-scratching stunts, this is just Manny being Manny.
Meanwhile, news is Exxon Mobil has (again) recorded the largest quarterly profit in U.S. history.
The oil giant reports a total net income for the second quarter of $11.68 billion. It eclipses the previous corporate profit record of $11.66 billion — also notched by Exxon Mobil — in the last quarter of 2007.
The happy news for Exxon Mobil shareholders is that they saw their per share earnings rise over the same period last year from $1.63 to $2.22. At least I think it was happy news.
You see, in many of the stories about Exxon Mobil's new record, Wall Street gurus seem, well, disappointed. They expected the quarterly profit total to reach $12 billion and per share earnings to hit $2.46. Consequently, the price for Exxon Mobil shares actually went down 2 or 3 percent.
Wow. They're really slacking, huh?
And you think, man, here's Exxon, posting record quarterly earnings, yet Wall Street analysts and shareholders are clucking that it should've been more. How much money does Exxon Mobil and its shareholders need? How much is enough?
The oil giant has already successfully reduced its punitive damages payments on the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill from $5 billion to $500 million. Now it's working to whittle down the punitive damages interest total. The reason? Maybe this is just Exxon being Exxon.
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