Barnes and Noble CEO Resigns

Jul 9, 2013 7:46am

Morning Business Memo:

Three years after being hired to revive the sagging fortunes of America’s biggest bookseller, the CEO of Barnes & Noble Inc. has resigned. William Lynch’s departure follows another sorry chapter for the retailer. Days ago Barnes & Noble reported that sales plummeted in the latest quarter. Losses doubled as Nook e-book devices failed to keep up with competitors. Lynch, a former Palm Inc. executive, was hired to boost the retailer’s tablet business.

In a sign of confidence, U.S. consumers are spending more on credit. The Federal Reserve says credit card spending rose more than 8 percent in May compared with the year before. Revolving credit – balances on credit cards – rose, surprising some analysts. The rise came as several reports showed consumer confidence had risen to its highest level in 5 years. At the same time fewer people are falling behind on credit card payments. The American Bankers Association says delinquencies fell to 2.41 percent in the first quarter of 2013, the lowest level since 1990.

Federal regulators want the largest U.S. banks to raise their ratio of equity to loans. New proposals are set to be released today by the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The stricter standards are meant to reduce the threat banks pose to the financial system. Equity includes money banks receive when they issue stock, as well as securities and property they own. The rule would apply to the eight largest banks, considered too big to fail. Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Bank of America and several other firms are so large and interconnected that their collapse could threaten the global financial system.

Alcoa Inc.’s losses grew, but its second quarter results were better than expected. While Alcoa continues to see strong sales of aluminum products used in automobiles and airplanes, the bottom line was hit by weak aluminum prices. Alcoa was the first big firm to report quarterly earnings.

The stock market’s expected to open with gains this morning for the third day in a row. Futures rose after strong gains overnight in Asia. The Dow Jones index rose 88 points Monday . The S&P had a similar percentage rise.

Richard Davies Business Correspondent ABC News Radio abcnews.com Twitter: daviesabc

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