A Business That's Not About Facebook

Rick Newman

Here are 10 things that have happened recently that had nothing to do with a social-media startup that just went public:

  1. Investors traded shares in more than 12,000 companies that are publicly listed in the United States, without any technical glitches.
  2. ExxonMobil defied the odds and earned approximately $112 million in net profit per day, even though it has never articulated a coherent social-media strategy.
  3. Technology-sector stocks rose about 9 percent for the year through mid-May, outpacing the broader stock market with no help from recent IPOs.
  4. After grazing the unnerving $4 per gallon mark in early April, gas prices fell back to an average of $3.77, forcing Americans to drive more and stop conserving energy.
  5. A luxury condominium complex in New York City said it plans to offer an underground parking space for $1 million per year, plus maintenance fees.                                                
  6. Americans continued to provide their personal information to websites that make money from it, in exchange for a free place where they can post pictures of their dogs and pretend they have an important job.                                                  
  7. Greek depositors started to withdraw their money from banks en masse, but don't worry, Europe can handle it.          
  8. President Obama launched a new public-service campaign meant to educate Americans about the important role of private equity in the U.S. economy.                                      
  9. The private company SpaceX launched a rocket into space, a key milestone in the shift from expensive government-funded space missions to cheaper, outsourced ones endorsed by the Tea Party.
  10. Ron Paul became a semi-retired presidential candidate, a strategy John McCain wishes he had used.

Oh yeah, there was one other important piece of news: Mark Zuckerberg got married, and wore a tie.

Rick Newman is the Chief Business Correspondent for U.S. News & World Report and author of Rebounders: How Winners Pivot from Setback to Success. Copyright 2012, author retains ownership. All Rights Reserved.

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