Every once in awhile I come across some really off-the-wall news or read about a CEO, CFO or other executive that makes ill-advised or questionable comments. To that end, I'd like to share a couple goofy things that have happened in the market in the last month or so.

News Corp. (NYSE:NWS)
Almost all directors who sit on boards of public companies have extensive corporate backgrounds, or a thorough knowledge of the financial markets. These qualities don't seem overly important at News Corp. Rupert Murdoch recently nominated Natalie Bancroft to serve on News Corp.'s board.

Bancroft's stats: She's 27, lives in Switzerland and is an opera singer or wants to be one. She's acknowledged that she has virtually no experience in commerce or journalism.

Perhaps Fox is looking to class-up "The O'Reilly Factor". (To read more about the story, see "Opera singer on News Corp. Board".)

Whole Foods (NYSE:WFMI)
Whole Foods' chief executive officer John Mackey was outed earlier this year for posting comments on message boards about the company and its business activities. However, Mackey has retained his job, and the incident seemed to have faded from the headlines.

That was until the company brought up the subject again this past week by announcing it had amended its code of business conduct and instituted a policy whereby its executives are prohibited from posting comments about the company, or its competitors on websites. (To read more on the story, see the Reuters article "Whole Foods Bans executives from online forums".)

Folks, is this really necessary? Announcing this stuff is just make headlines and brings the whole scandal right back to the surface. You would hope the company's well-healed officers would know that message boards were off limits by now. Perhaps a quiet, internal memo would have sufficed.

Citigroup (NYSE:C)
When a company closes out a quarter, accountants usually pour over the numbers and the controller and CFO work extra hard to make sure what is going to be reported in the earnings release is as accurate as possible. In mid-October Citigroup announced a sizable quarterly loss, and the investment bank had also made it clear that it was going to take $3 billion in charges as the result of its subprime risk.

Then, just a couple of weeks later, it was reported on November 4 that, oops, the company might take up to an additional $11 billion in write downs.

What gives? Did an accounting ledger fall behind a desk and not get noticed on the first go around? Eleven billion is kind of a big number. It's hard to pass that off as a rounding error. This one takes the cake.

Bottom Line
Every once in awhile I come across some really offbeat news. And I just have to share it with you. Stay tuned, because Q4 earnings season is just around the corner, and there's bound to be lots of excuses and funny news stories out there.

For more market follies, check out The Ghouls And Monsters On Wall Street.

Looking to cook up a market-stomping stock portfolio? Check out our FREE report "7 Ingredients to Market Beating Stocks" and get started right now!

Related Articles
  1. Stock Analysis

    Net Neutrality: Pros and Cons

    The fight over net neutrality has become an amazing spectacle. But at its core, it's yet another skirmish in cable television's war to remain relevant.
  2. Personal Finance

    A Day in the Life of an Equity Research Analyst

    What does an equity research analyst do on an everyday basis?
  3. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: PowerShares S&P 500 Downside Hedged

    Find out about the PowerShares S&P 500 Downside Hedged ETF, and learn detailed information about characteristics, suitability and recommendations of it.
  4. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: ProShares Large Cap Core Plus

    Learn information about the ProShares Large Cap Core Plus ETF, and explore detailed analysis of its characteristics, suitability and recommendations.
  5. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: iShares Core Growth Allocation

    Find out about the iShares Core Growth Allocation Fund, and learn detailed information about its characteristics, suitability and recommendations.
  6. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: iShares MSCI USA Minimum Volatility

    Learn about the iShares MSCI USA Minimum Volatility exchange-traded fund, which invests in low-volatility equities traded on the U.S. stock market.
  7. Stock Analysis

    Should You Follow Millionaires into This Sector?

    Millionaire investors—and those who follow them—should take another look at the current economic situation before making any more investment decisions.
  8. Professionals

    What to do During a Market Correction

    The market has corrected...now what? Here's what you should consider rather than panicking.
  9. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: Vanguard Mid-Cap Value

    Take an in-depth look at the Vanguard Mid-Cap Value ETF, one of the largest and most popular mid-cap funds in the U.S. equity space.
  10. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: Schwab US Broad Market

    Take an in-depth look at the Schwab U.S. Broad Market ETF, an incredibly low-cost fund based on a wide selection of the U.S. equity market.
RELATED TERMS
  1. Equity

    The value of an asset less the value of all liabilities on that ...
  2. Hard-To-Sell Asset

    An asset that is extremely difficult to dispose of either due ...
  3. Sucker Yield

    When an investor has essentially risked all of his capital for ...
  4. PT (Perseroan Terbatas)

    An acronym for Perseroan Terbatas, which is Limited Liability ...
  5. Ltd. (Limited)

    An abbreviation of "limited," Ltd. is a suffix that ...
  6. BHD (Berhad)

    The suffix Bhd. is an abbreviation of a Malay word "berhad," ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. How do dividends affect retained earnings?

    When a company issues a cash dividend to its shareholders, the retained earnings listed on the balance sheet are reduced ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is the difference between called-up share capital and paid-up share capital?

    The difference between called-up share capital and paid-up share capital is investors have already paid in full for paid-up ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Why would a corporation issue convertible bonds?

    A convertible bond represents a hybrid security that has bond and equity features; this type of bond allows the conversion ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How does additional paid in capital affect retained earnings?

    Both additional paid-in capital and retained earnings are entries under the shareholders' equity section of a company's balance ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What types of capital are not considered share capital?

    The money a business uses to fund operations or growth is called capital, and there are a number of capital sources available. ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What is the difference between issued share capital and subscribed share capital?

    The difference between subscribed share capital and issued share capital is the former relates to the amount of stock for ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

COMPANIES IN THIS ARTICLE
Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!