This Day in Business History

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November 1

1871 To seal up potential information leaks, the New York Stock Exchange passes a law forbidding members from "dealing with" non-members in the "rooms of the Exchange." The punishment for this infraction was a suspension lasting anywhere from 60 days to one year.
1893 Supporters of the gold standard as the basis for the United States' currency win a key victory over legislators who argued for silver, as Congress votes to turn back the three year-old Sherman Silver Purchase Act. The Sherman Act helped generate $155.9 million in Treasury notes during its brief time in the law books.
1923 Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company buys the rights to manufacture Zeppelin dirigibles.
1927 The Ford Motor Company begins production on a significantly redesigned automobile--the Model A. With prices starting at $460, nearly 5 million Model As rolled onto America's highways before production ended in early 1932.
1950 Two radical Puerto Rican nationalists launched an assault on the Blair-Lee mansion, where President Harry S. Truman was staying while the White House was undergoing repairs, across the street. Staff police foiled the assassins' attempt. The news quickly spread to the financial community, where relieved traders went on a small spree, helping the Dow post a modest 0.68 gain to close the day at 225.69.

November 2

1982 According to a report released by the U.S. Labor Department, 7.4 percent of the workforce remain unemployed, and the jobs being created are increasingly in the service industry, reinforcing America's steady drift away from its manufacturing base. The result was a rising number of jobs that offered less security and lower pay than factory-based work.
1985 Faced with a mountain of debt, the Hunt brothers quietly sell off "substantially all" of their $350 million silver holdings. Despite dumping a good chunk of their 59 million ounces of silver, the brothers still managed to lose roughly $1 billion on the sale. Analysts hoped the news would boost the price of the precious metal, which had languished in the $6-an-ounce range ever since the Hunts embarked on their bid to conquer the silver market in the late 1970s.
1995 Daiwa Bank's American operations close down after an investigation revealed that it had let one of its bond traders continue to make unauthorized deals even after he had racked up $1.1 billion in debt on bad trades, and that Daiwa had worked with the trader to cover up his staggering losses.

November 3

1919 Fueled by a post-Armistice "inflation boom," the Dow posts a high of 119.62. Unfortunately, this was the last gasp for the boom, as fears over the nation's money and credit supplies sent the markets into a protracted decline that lasted well into the next year. The Dow bottomed out on August 24, 1920, posting a low mark of 63.90.
1966 President Lyndon Johnson gives the go-ahead to the Truth in Packaging bill, which called for supermarket goods to be decked out in labels that detailed their contents, as well as manufacturing information, and for manufacturers and overenthusiastic copywriters to stop using hyperbolic slogans such as "jumbo ounces" on packaging labels. Still, the legislation backed away from mandating standards for weights and measures; rather, it called on manufacturers to "voluntarily" devise their own standards.
1975 An independent auditor releases the results of his investigation, including the finding that former officials of Mattel, one of the United States' largest toy manufacturers, had fabricated press releases and financial information to "maintain the appearance of continued corporate growth" in the face of the toy giant's spiraling fiscal woes. The extensive report, commissioned as part of a settlement Mattel signed in a related case brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission, concluded that the officials had operated their cover-up and misinformation scheme since 1968.

November 4

1880 James and John Ritty of Dayton, Ohio, invent the very first cash register.
1939 With World War II heating up in Europe, President Franklin Roosevelt hands the U.S. Customs Service the duty of implementing the Neutrality Act of 1939, which paved the way for America to take an economic, rather than an explicitly militaristic, role in World War II.
1953 Hollywood appeals to those Americans hoping to wed into wealth by releasing the immortal Marilyn Monroe comedy How to Marry a Millionaire. Betty Grable and Lauren Bacall joined Monroe to complete the film's trio of gold-diggers on the prowl for eligible and, more importantly, well-off bachelors.

November 5

1935 Parker Brothers company launches "Monopoly," the best-selling game in history. Monopoly was actually a descendant of a board game patented in 1904 by Lizzie J. Magie, a Quaker from Virginia. Magie's invention, which she called the Landlord Game, was designed to promote her political belief in the passing of a single federal tax based on land ownership. The game spread through word of mouth and, in 1933, Charles B. Darrow mapped out his own version of the game on an oilcloth stretched across his kitchen table. Soon, he started selling homemade copies of the game to friends and relatives and demand quickly exceeded his supply. He decided to solve the problem by attempting to sell his game to an established manufacturer. Fearful that the game had too many rules and would take too long to play, Parker Brothers initially rejected Darrow's creation. Eventually, Parker Brothers came to its senses and snapped up rights to Monopoly for an undisclosed sum.
1976 With a strike looming on the horizon, the United Auto Workers union and officials for the Chrysler Corporation manage to reach a tentative labor agreement. The deal, which still needed approval from local union chiefs, scored some victories for labor, including a wage increase and an improved benefits package. It also signaled another success for the UAW, which, thanks to a four-week strike, forced the Ford Motor Company to sign-off on a similar contract earlier that fall.

November 6

1984 The New York Stock Exchange keeps its doors open on a presidential election day for the first time in 193 years. Traders didn't respond too well to the move. Fortunately, the Dow managed to post a fifteen-point gain on the day.
1996 Bill Clinton defeats Republican challenger Bob Dole to win a second term in the White House, while the GOP maintained its hold on Congress. The results clearly pleased Wall Street, as traders sent the Dow surging to a 100-point gain, bumping the index past the record 6,100 mark.
Born on November 6
1851 Charles Henry Dow, American financial journalist who (with Edward D. Jones) inaugurated the Dow-Jones averages and helped wed media to the stock markets, is born in Connecticut. Dow moved to New York in 1880 to work as a stringer for a financial news wire. In 1882, he joined forces with Edward D. Jones to produce news reports for Wall Street brokerage firms. The newly formed Dow Jones & Company would churn out these bulletins, then known as "flimsies," or "slips," and send them over to Wall Street via messenger. Dow and his team would cap the day with a summary report of the market action that, by 1889, had evolved into the Wall Street Journal. Dow was the first editor of the Journal, using the paper as a vehicle to postulate his economic beliefs, including the aptly named "Dow theory." Along the way, Dow developed a statistical method for measuring the markets that has since become the Dow Jones average.

November 7

1918 Word that a peace agreement had been signed ending World War I puts Wall Street in a festive mood. The New York Stock Exchange closed early and traders hit the streets to celebrate. The problem was that no one had actually signed a peace agreement--it was just a hopeful rumor that had made its way to the trading floor. One week later, the armistice became a reality and the war finally drew to a close.
1984 On paper, a reduction in lending rates sounds like a fail-safe way to spur the markets. Despite the decision by a number of major banks to slash their prime lending rates by a quarter of a point, Wall Street still struggles through a day of declining stock and bond prices because the lending rate reduction was overshadowed by the results of the previous day's elections. While President Reagan rolled to a second-term victory, Republicans running in key congressional races failed to capitalize on his success. As a result, the Democrats maintained their grip on Congress, frustrating financial professionals who had hoped that the election would result in a "working coalition" between the president and a Republican-controlled House of Representatives. Instead, Wall Street braced itself for more of the protracted political stalemate that was likely to further swell the nation's already bloated deficit.
1997 Federal Reserve chief Alan Greenspan takes the stage at the Center for Financial Studies in Frankfurt, Germany and tells the crowd that the Federal Reserve is looking for ways to steer America's fiscal future. "The Fed is struggling to find a firmer standard of monetary policy," he explained. Greenspan also touched on inflation, praising Germany and other industrialized nations' "remarkable" efforts to reign in their currency rates.

November 8

1933 President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Henry Hopkins, one of the architects of the New Deal unveil the Civil Works Administration (CWA), a program designed to secure temporary work for people who would otherwise have to endure a winter of unemployment. The CWA provided a mix of white and blue-collar jobs that promised to pay normal wages for a limited schedule of work. Though grounded more in compassion than careful planning, the program succeeded not only in helping workers through the winter, but also in giving the country a badly needed infusion of cash. According to the New York Times, the CWA had pumped $1 billion into the economy by May 1934.
1935 United Mine Workers chief John L. Lewis joins forces with a dozen fellow labor leaders to announce the creation of the Committee for Industrial Organization (CIO). An affiliate of the American Federation of Labor (AFL), the CIO was charged with pushing the cause for industrial unionism.
1945 The passage of the Revenue Act of 1945 is a key step in rolling back the heavy taxes which had been implemented to help wage the war. Along with cutting $6 billion in taxes, the Revenue Act initiated an extensive post-war revision of the nation's entire tax system.

November 9

1903 The "Rich Man's Panic" reaches its nadir--the Dow dropped to a paltry 42.15 as the stocks of industrial companies plunged to single-digit lows. The fiscal crisis dragged on for the rest of the year, taking a severe toll on banks, as well as many steel and iron producers.
1988 George Bush's victory over Democrat challenger Michael Dukakis in the 1988 presidential election did give a boost to the dollar, albeit a brief one. As one Wall Street veteran pointed out, "the 'Bush Dollar' lasted a very, very short time--about an hour." Still, traders and financial officials suggested that the day's action was far from a reflection on the new commander in chief. Rather, the afterglow of the '88 campaign was eclipsed by fears about the nation's budget and trade deficits, as well as suspicions that the central banks had "propped up" the drooping dollar during the election season. As a result, America's currency dropped to its lowest mark in ten months, triggering declines in stock and prices.
1993 Vice President Al Gore and presidential hopeful Ross Perot hit the nation's airwaves to argue the merits of the North America American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The informal debate, broadcast on CNN's Larry King Live pivoted around NAFTA's potential impact on the U.S. workforce. Gore supported the legislation, reasoning that it would pave the way for a global economic structure that would boost the country's economy. Perot, meanwhile, touched a populist chord, warning that NAFTA would only result in the farming out of factory jobs to countries with workers who earned cheaper wages and fewer benefits. The vice president and other NAFTA supporters prevailed, and the agreement soon made its way into the law books. Labor loyalists took Gore and President Clinton to task, interpreting their support for NAFTA as a sharp break from traditional Democratic pro-union policies.

November 10

1983 During a visit to Japan, U.S. President Ronald Reagan meets with Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone to discuss the nations' economic differences. While the two leaders vowed to work together to even the seeming imbalance, Japan's trade surplus kept growing, reaching $39.485 billion in 1985 and $59.3 billion in 1993.
1988 After a "furious" few years of jockeying, jostling and lobbying, Energy Secretary John Herrington announces that Texas had been chosen as the home for the giant $4.4 billion atom smasher. The superconductor promised to be an economic bonanza for Texas and Waxahachie, the town where the superconductor would be built. Along with creating a number of jobs and bringing in a tidy sum for construction, the atom smasher also came with an annual research budget in the neighborhood of $270 million. While the announcement was celebrated in the Lone Star State, officials from some of the competing states derided the selection process as politically motivated, determined more by regional favoritism than merit. Despite assurances from Herrington that the "Texas site best fit our goals," legislators from some of the other states threatened to kill the appropriations bill that would fund the first round of construction. And their wish was fulfilled in 1993, when spiraling costs led the House to put the project on ice.

November 11

1872 Fire engulfs Boston, wreaking havoc on one of the United States' flagship cities. The impact of the fire could be felt in New York, where nervous traders sent stocks tumbling. Although the markets made a brief comeback in December, the Boston blaze cast a pall over Wall Street that stretched well into the new year.
1985 Traders' growing sense of optimism about the nation's fiscal future spills over into the markets, as the Dow, New Stock Exchange, and Standard and Poor's index all reach new heights. Many traders pinned their hopes on declining interest rates, rising productivity, and the Fed's continued ability to reign in inflation to help spark profits. There were some dissenting voices, including analysts who warned that the markets would suffer an inevitable "correction" before making any more big gains. Yet far from retreating downward, the markets kept picking up steam, charging into a record-setting bull run that lasted well into 1987.
1986 The ever-competitive computer industry gets a bit tighter as Sperry Rand and Burroughs merge to become Unisys. While the deal cost $15 million in "changeover" expenses, it paid immediate dividends: Unisys shot to the number-two spot on the list of the nation's biggest computer companies.

November 12

1934 The U.S. Treasury Department launches the Treasury International Capital (TIC) initiative. Under the auspices of TIC, the Treasury beefed up its investigations, and released reports on the "flow" of international capital.
1946 A uniquely American invention, the drive-through bank, is launched. The Exchange National Bank in Chicago unveils the nation's first ten drive-up teller windows, which no doubt delighted Americans who neither had the time to park nor the inclination to ever leave their cars.
1996 Reverend Jesse Jackson threatens to lead a potentially crippling boycott against Texaco if the oil giant failed to settle a lingering racial-discrimination lawsuit. Six Texaco employees initially filed the $520 million suit in 1994; the ensuing years saw the case mushroom into a complaint backed by some 1,400 workers. Despite growing pressure, Texaco was slow to respond to the case. However, Jackson's involvement, coupled with the revelation of a "secret" audio tape that captured Texaco executives making racial slurs and plotting to derail the lawsuit, helped bring the case to a close. On November 15, Texaco announced what was believed to be a $ 175 million settlement to the case, which included a one-time salary boost for minority employees, as well as the establishment of "diversity training and sensitivity programs".

November 13

1789 In a letter he wrote, Benjamin Franklin laments to a friend, "In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes."
1879 The burgeoning communications industry joins hands with Wall Street, as the New York Stock Exchange makes the move to the modern era, installing telegraph and phone lines.
1995 President Clinton shoots down a Republican-penned bill to keep the government afloat for another four weeks. The president reasoned that the bill was loaded with political pork that would erode progress that Democrats had made to protect environmental and public health programs. House Speaker Newt Gingrich fired a sharp volley back at Clinton, reminding the president that the Republicans "were elected to change politics as usual." The net result of all the wrangling was a difficult political mess and an extended vacation for some 800,000 government workers.

November 14

1986 Ivan Boesky consents to a stern settlement on charges that he and Wall Street veteran Dennis B. Levine had been involved in an improper trade relationship: Levine furnished tips and information that Boesky then used to make big-money trades. In return, Boesky paid Levine a percentage of the profits from these trades. The union proved to be quite lucrative, as Boesky reeled in roughly $50 million from illegal trades. But, when the Securities and Exchange Commission started probing into Levine's affairs, he wilted under the heat and handed over his partner to the authorities. The ensuing settlement called for Boesky to return his illegally gained profits to the SEC, as well as pay a $50 million fine. Along with emptying his once-considerable coffers, the sentence also banned Boesky from the securities industry and called for him to serve a maximum of five years in prison.
1991 The press report that President Bush and the Senate are mulling a move to place limits on credit card interest rates. This notion didn't sit well with Wall Street; a day of panicked trading ensued and the Dow posted a hefty 120-point loss.

November 15

1867 The stock ticker is first unveiled. Invented by Edward Callahan, it fed traders up-to-the-minute stock prices over telegraph wires.
1881 The American Federation of Labor is founded.
1994 Fearful that the fast-paced growth would trigger inflation, the Fed decided to rein in growth by raising short-term interest rates three quarters of a point. The increase, which brought the rate from 4.75 percent to 5.5 percent, touched off a flurry of activity in the financial community, as a number of banks followed the Fed's lead by hiking up their prime lending rates. And, while traders had been bracing themselves for a move by the Fed, they were still surprised by the size of the increase. As a result, Wall Street suffered through a day of volatile action, but the Dow posted only mild losses.

November 16

1914 The Federal Reserve Bank, which officially opened for business, was initially designed as a more or less "passive" institution, focused primarily on staving off bank panics. Over the years, though, the Fed has taken on a more active role in guiding and stabilizing the financial services industry.
1993 It's clear that NAFTA would pass through the House and become law. The news excites Wall Street, which had been pushing for NAFTA's passage. Traders celebrated by snapping up stocks and the Dow Jones Industrial Average picked up 33.25 points to close the day at 3,700 points.

November 17

1994 Faced with staggering losses, including $3.2 billion during the second quarter of 1994, Sony officials decide to swallow a bitter financial pill and take a $2.7 billion write-off on Columbia Pictures. While some analysts applauded the write-off as a "daring" attempt to right the company's financial course, others focused blame on Sony brass, arguing that the studio's woes stemmed from poor fiscal mismanagement.

November 18

1938 Union members elect John L. Lewis as the first president of the recently formed, and newly independent, Congress of Industrial Organizations.
1969 Joe Kennedy dies in Hyannis Port, Massachussets, at age 81. Unlike his politically minded progeny, he made his name in the world of finance, becoming a bank president at age twenty-five and a millionaire by age thirty. Kennedy dabbled in less savory affairs as well, running a lucrative bootleg liquor operation that helped fuel the family fortune. He retired from investment banking in 1929--before the markets could deflate his wealth--but he remained a prominent figure on Wall Street. Looking to expand his power and fortune, Kennedy became involved in politics and also took a failed stab at running a movie studio.
1987 After an intense two-month courtship, Sony Corp. strikes a deal to acquire CBS Records. For $2 billion, the Japanese electronics giant snagged the world's biggest record company and label of hit-making heavyweights such as Bruce Springsteen and Michael Jackson. The deal also included CBS's global array of manufacturing plants and subsidiary companies, as well as 10,000 employees and Columbia House, a direct-mail music club. While the acquisition instantly boosted Sony's position in the music industry, it was also the capstone of a major corporate makeover for CBS. During the past year, CBS's new chairman, Laurence A. Tisch, aggressively moved to re-shape the company, selling off non-broadcast affiliates and divisions. Though some may have grumbled about Tisch's decision to peddle the music industry's biggest prize, the infusion of a few billion dollars won praise from Wall Street, as shares of CBS's stock posted a $8.625 gain to close the day at $176.
1994 The Commerce Department announces that the U.S.'s trade deficit had grown again, climbing up to $10.3 billion during the previous September.

November 19

1944 Looking for ways to fund World War II, President Franklin D. Roosevelt announces the 6th War Loan Drive, which flooded the market with war bonds intended to meet Roosevelt's goals of "immediately" raising $14 billion for the war.
1973 New York stock market takes sharpest drop in 19 years.
1981 U.S. Steel agrees to pay $6.3 million for Marathon Oil.
1982 With the U.S. staggering through a prolonged fiscal slump, the Federal Reserve slashes the discount rate from 9.5 percent to 9 percent in hopes of jump-starting the stagnant economy.
1985 Pennzoil wins a $10.53 billion verdict in a case against fellow oil industry giant Texaco. The award stemmed from Pennzoil's attempted acquisition of Getty Oil. Pennzoil had anted up $5.3 billion for the family-run oil concern. Getty seemingly accepted the Pennzoil offer and the deal was feted with a round of press releases, champagne toasts, and a favorable vote from the Getty board. However, besides these gestures and a few handshakes, the deal lacked a written contract signed by both parties. Sensing an opening, Texaco stepped up to the bargaining table with an offer that doubled Pennzoil's bid for Getty. Officials for Getty accepted and signed off on the Texaco deal, triggering Pennzoil's lawsuit. Despite the absence of a signed document, the state-court jury ruled that Pennzoil and Getty had engaged in a binding contract and handed down the single biggest civil verdict in court history.

November 20

1967 President Lyndon Johnson announces the formation of the National Commission on Product Safety. The newly formed agency was charged with safeguarding the public against "hazardous products," as well as exploring the efficacy of Federal consumer protection legislation.
1974 The United States files an antitrust suit to break up ATT.
1990 The owners of Guinness Beer celebrate their $1 billion purchase of Spain's biggest brewer, La Cruz del Campo (Cruzcampo). The deal not only stood as the largest foreign outlay in a Spanish property, but was also a key strategic move for Guinness, which planned to use Cruzcampo as a building block for globalizing its brewing operations.
1993 The Senate Ethics Committee censures California senator Alan Cranston for his "dealings" with the scandal-ridden Savings and Loan executive Charles Keating. In the strongly worded statement, which capped off a two-year probe into the actions of the "Keating Five," the committee chided Cranston for "violating unwritten but commonly understood standards of Senate behavior." Specifically, Cranston had pursued $800,000 in "charitable contributions" from Keating during the same period in which he had acted with Federal regulators to defend Lincoln Savings and Loan, Keating's troubled operation. However, an enraged Cranston took to the Senate floor to rebut the claims brought against him. "Nothing I did violated a law or Senate rule," the senator declared, though he did tender an apology for engaging in behavior which gave the appearance of being improper.

November 21

1929 Hoping to pick up the pieces after the stock market's dramatic free-fall, President Herbert Hoover sits down for two closed-door meetings with the nation's business leaders, as well as trade union representatives. Each session saw the president and respective groups hash out a broad plan for righting the economy and reassuring the panicked public. Two weeks later, both the business and labor factions gave the green light to a general directive that Hoover hoped would help steer the nation away from fiscal turmoil.
1945 The United Auto Workers stage the first postwar strike at the General Motors plant in Detroit, Michigan.
1990 Michael Milken, Wall Street's "fallen junk-bond king" is sentenced by U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood to a ten-year prison term for various securities law infractions. The sentence topped off an intensive four-year probe into the actions of the former Drexel Burnham chief, who, during the heady days of the '80s, had become one of the financial world's wealthiest and most powerful figures. However, Milken's domain was seemingly built and maintained through corrupt tactics, including insider trading and "stock manipulation."

November 22

1919 A Labor conference committee in the United States urges an eight-hour workday and a 48-hour week.
1963 The assassination of President John F. Kennedy reverberates from Dallas, Texas to Wall Street, shaking the markets as traders, fearful for the nation's future, dump stocks left and right. In little less than an hour, the New York Stock Exchange dropped $13 billion of its total stock value. Exchange officials looked to put the brakes on the sell-off and temporarily halted the markets. But, after a few days of mourning, Wall Street seemed ready to return to action with steadier nerves and renewed vigor. On Monday, November 25, the Wall Street Journal reported that business and financial leaders predicted a quick return to the strong trends the economy demonstrated just before Kennedy's assassination. This optimism was further fueled by the news that the past weekend saw a number of brokers field "heavy buy orders."
1977 A federal judge slapped Phillips Petroleum with a $30,000 fine for using a clandestine corporate fund to illegally funnel contributions to various political campaigns. In a related matter, the judge also found Phillips guilty of filing fudged tax reports.

November 23

1860 The New York Clearing House hands out its first loan, issuing $7.375 million worth of certificates to the nation's ailing banks.
1987 With Wall Street still feeling the effects of the record crash of October 1987, the Chicago Board of Trade takes its own precautionary steps, implementing a daily price ceiling on the Major Market Index future, as well as the Institutional Index future. Under these limits, the 20 stocks on the Major and Institutional indices were restricted to moves of no more than 40 and 25 points, respectively. Following the October debacle, Wall Street officials came under fire for failing to reign in and regulate index-futures trading; the move by the Chicago Board was a step toward quieting these claims, as well as holding off potential legislative action by Congress or Federal officials.

November 24

1997 In response to a 554.26 point free fall, New York Stock Exchange officials invoke the "circuit breaker" rule and put a halt to trading. The move, which marked the first time that the Exchange had used the circuit breaker system, raised the ire of some traders, who grumbled that the rule was used rashly and unnecessarily. So, The Wall Street Journal reported that the NYSE had implemented changes to the "circuit breaker" rules, ensuring that trading halts only be implemented when the Dow Jones industrial average dropped by at least 10 or 20 percent.
Born on November 24
1888 Dale Carnegie, author of How to Win Friends and Influence People, the business and people skills bible. Born in Maryville, Missouri, Carnegie made a career out of training people to use personal charm to gain financial success. In 1937, he released the archetypal self-help manual which included Carnegie's trademark belief that getting ahead in business comes largely from "the ability to express ideas, to assume leadership, and to arouse enthusiasm among people." Packed with tips and tricks for schmoozing and swaying without manipulating people, the book was an instant hit and has sold over 15 million copies. Carnegie released a string of similarly themed self-help manuals and was also a frequent figure on the lecture circuit, counseling business people in the best ways to boost their careers.
1925 William F. Buckley, Jr., journalist, founder of National Review.

November 25

1874 The Greenback party, a political alliance composed mainly of Southern and Western farmers ravaged by the Panic of 1873, is born. Along with strong support of the greenback, legal tender that had been introduced in 1861 to help finance the Civil War, the group favored the demise of bank notes and stood firmly against policies forwarded by the U.S. Treasury. The Greenback party enjoyed some initial success, joining forces with the Labor party to gain fourteen seats in Congress in 1878. However, the return of fiscal prosperity in the early 1880s eased the discontent that had carried Greenback candidates to office. By 1884, the party was forced to disband.
1964 Eleven nations give a total of $3 billion to rescue the value of the British currency.
1994 Akio Morita, founder of electronics giant Sony Corp. steps down as CEO. While his retirement didn't impact Sony's daily operations--Morita had handed the reins of the company to President Norio Ogha in 1989 --it exacerbated the instability associated with Sony throughout the decade.
1996 Buoyed by booming confidence in the dollar, as well as dwindling interest rates on U.S. Treasury Bonds, the Dow charges past the magic 6.500 point for the first time in history.
Born on November 25
1844 Carl Benz, pioneer of early motor cars.

November 26

1975 President Gerald Ford proposed a $2.3 billion aid package designed to address New York City's "seasonal cash needs." The president's plan, passed a little less than a month later, made federal money available to New York in any of the ensuing three years. While Mayor Abraham D. Beame praised Ford's announcement, a few New Yorkers groused about the attendant tax hikes which threatened to further erode the city's private sector and drive away wealthy residents to tax havens in New Jersey. Whatever the merits of these complaints, the city, saddled with a multi-million-dollar deficit that threatened to balloon to $1.3 billion by March 1976, seemingly had little choice but to accept federal help.
1979 Oil deposits equaling OPEC reserves are found in Venezuela.
1985 Movie-star-turned-conservative-hero Ronald Reagan adds the title of record-setting author to his resume, as Random House hands the president an unprecedented $3 million for the rights to publish his autobiography.
1990 Matsushita Electronic Industrial Co. follows fellow electronics heavyweight Sony Inc., which had purchased Columbia Pictures in 1989, into the world of "entertainment software," inking a $6.6 billion deal to acquire MCA.

November 27

1979 Looking to boost its sagging profit margin, U.S. Steel announces that it was shutting down twelve of its plants, a move that threatened the jobs of 13,000 employees. The company also unveiled plans to slow down work at other factories, as well as to take a hefty net loss for the year. In the face of this costly decision, U.S. Steel officials placed much of the blame on "restrictive government policies and rules," which putatively resulted in "unfairly priced imports" and excessive environmental spending requirements. Some analysts questioned this conclusion, wondering if a fatter profit margin would have prompted U.S. Steel to invest more in its aging plants.
Charles DeGaulle vetoes Great Britain's entry into the Common Market again.
1995 AmHS/Premier and SunHealth Alliance announce their merger. By joining forces, the industry titans formed the United States' biggest health care network, with over 650 hospitals and 1,000 affiliates in 50 states.
Born on November 27
1874 Charles A. Beard, distinguished American historian who wrote History of the United States.

November 28

1914 The New York Stock Exchange re-opens for bond trading, albeit with a set of restrictions designed to keep the markets from crumbling during the war. The United States' entrance into World War I forced the NYSE to shut its doors in July 1914. However, a few months later, the government needed new ways to help fund the war.
1942 The U.S. government announces coffee rationing to help aid the war effort.
1982 Representatives from 88 nations convene in Geneva to discuss the state of world trade, a decade before the North American Free Trade Agreement threw open the doors to the "liberalized" global economy. During the conference, a framework was developed for a global fiscal system predicated on the eradication of protectionist trade policies. At the close of the Geneva meetings, the participants released their suggestions for nurturing a worldwide free trade system.

November 29

1918 The New York Stock Exchange Building Co. acquires the nearby Mortimer Building. The purchase, which came 15 years after the NYSE moved into its offices at 18 Broad Street, was to become part of the expanding Exchange. In 1922 the NYSE opened new offices with extra trading space. Housed in a 23-story tower, the Exchange's new digs were dubbed the "garage."
1923 An international commission headed by American banker Charles Dawes is set up to investigate the German economy.
1973 Chrysler Corp. announces plans to halt production at seven plants. The move, which came a week after fellow "Big Three" automaker General Motors disclosed its own round of temporary closings, affected 38,000 workers, as Chrysler looked to slash inventory and shift production from once-popular boat-sized autos, to smaller, more saleable models.

November 30

1956 The United States offers emergency oil to Europe to counter the Arab ban.
1988 Some of the world's most powerful companies engaged in a protracted struggle to acquire RJR Nabisco. After a period of furious action, a management group led by RJR executives, as well as Shearson Lehman Hutton Inc. and Salomon Inc. seemingly topped the list of bidders with an offer of $25.76 billion. The runner-up was New York buy-out specialist Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, who anted up $25.07 billion. Surprisingly, RJR Nabisco decided to give the nod to KKR. Stunned by the outcome, representatives for the defeated management group blasted the auction as a "suspicious" process. Officials for RJR Nabisco did little to cool the controversy, issuing a statement, which, outside of deeming the two bids "substantially equivalent," did little else to explain their decision. However, a few fingers were pointed at F. Ross Johnson, RJR president and the head of the management group, who, a few weeks earlier, had angered Nabisco's board by tendering an initial $75-per-share offer that unintentionally touched off the bidding war for the company.
1995 The Justice Department indicts eleven brokers, who, according to federal prosecutors, had developed an elaborate scheme to swipe large sums from their clients' holdings. Along with the usual round of fines, the government marshaled criminal sanctions in the case, meaning that the guilty brokers would likely wind up serving prison terms. The ruling marked the first time in years that such stern penalties had been levied in a fraud case.



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