From the desk of Bob Meyer...05/06/2008
Builders Use Barter To Pay Bills
In Tampa Bay, Florida, one home builder is
out of cash and paying his contractors with vacant building
lots, because he has more lots than cash. (Some of the lots
sold for $50,000 a year ago.)
Orange County Politician Wants
Larry Dick, owner of Riddle Appliances, is a
20-year member of TradeAmericanCard and a Republican
candidate for the 60th assembly district. The former
councilman and water commissioner of Orange is actively
seeking donations; he gladly accepts TAC trade dollars.
Homeseekers Barter �Their Services� For Space
For 20 years St. Ambrose Housing Aid Center
in Baltimore (MD) has run a matchmaking service, helping
Baltimore homeowners with extra space find people looking
for a room to rent. They�ve made 1,180 matches�about 60 a
Homesharing can be a flexible arrangement.
Homeseekers sometimes barter services in exchange for rent.
The St. Ambrose Homesharing telephone is (410) 366-6180.
Economists See Banks� Balance Sheets Dropping
At a conference sponsored by Brandeis
University and the University of Chicago business schools,
two economists and two academics estimated that about half
the mortgages losses, or about $200 billion, will be borne
by banks and other leveraged financial institutions.
For every $1 less in capital, a bank lends
roughly $10 less. Thus the $200 in mortgaged losses, will
lead them to shrink their balance sheets by about $2
trillion...lending less and selling assets.
South Africans Barter Real Estate
Property developer Ian Meyer�s web site is
where real estate property listings will be given a minimum
of 60 days global exposure. For more information see:
From the desk of Bob Meyer...04/29/2008
ITEX San Diego Goes Green
To help celebrate Earth Day on April 22, the
ITEX in San Diego office decided to go green. Rather than
printing 700 130-page directories for their members, they
will now be e-mailing them instead. Not only is it more
environmentally friendly, but it also allows ITEX to provide
a more current listing of its local members. A new e-mail
directory will be sent every billing cycle to their ITEX
San Diego ITEX web site is
Newspaper Ads + Internet = Sales
According to the Newspaper Association of
America, new consumer research, conducted by Clark, Martire
& Bartolomeo and commissioned by Google, found that among
people who research products and services after seeing them
advertised in newspapers 67% use the Internet to find more
information, and nearly 70% of them actually make a purchase
following their additional research.
BBX Trade Exchange Offers Real Estate
Following a successful listing on the
National Stock Exchange of Australia (NSX) in 2006, BBX
Property Fund has issued a third prospectus to raise
additional funds for property investment to add to their
Investment in the Property Fund is open to
the general public as well as members of the BBX exchange.
The prospectus invites investors to apply for up to
2,000,000 Ordinary Shares and up to 8,000,000 B-Class Shares
at an issue price of $1.00 each.
To apply for B-Class Shares, an investor must
be, or apply to become, a member of the exchange thus being
able to secure an investment that is tax effective, when
used in conjunction with a self-managed superannuation fund.
The company recommends that investors seek independent
professional advice in this regard.
The BBX Property Fund is a licensed
investment company established to invest in residential and
commercial properties in the capital cities and growth
centres of Australia and New Zealand.
Pies, Pork & Services Bartered For Homegrown
Bryan Moyer Suderman has launched something
he calls community supported music. People who buy annual
memberships in his company, SmallTall Music, receive regular
deliveries of �fresh, homegrown, organic music.� Some
members barter pork, pies, photography services, web site
assistance and house painting as payment for their
From the desk of Bob Meyer...04/22/2008
Use Those Gift Cards
Bankruptcy laws do not require companies to
redeem their gift certificates, and in an economic downturn
you can be sure there will be more bankruptcy filings. So
take action now...use those gift cards! (Some companies in
bankruptcy will honor their gift cards, others suggest that
gift card holders file a claim in bankruptcy court.)
2nd Home�Vacation Spots�Sales Dropping
Surprise, surprise. Speculators are
continuing to exit the market with vacation home sales
falling 30.6% last year (from 1.07 million to 740,000),
according to the National Association of Realtors.
Internet Display Advertising Makes Big Gain
Banner ads and other display ads on the
Internet saw big gains in 2007, up 15.9% to $11.3 billion.
Ads on network TV dropped by 2% to $22.43 billion. Cable TV
jumped 6.5% to $17.84 billion. Newspapers and radio both
dropped, 5.6% and 3.5% respectively.
FedEx Sees No Sign of Economic Rebound
FedEx is a diversified transportation company
that moves everything from documents to building materials
through a network of planes, tractor-trailers, and delivery
vehicles. As they move millions of packages daily they are a
good barometer for the American economy. FedEx reports that
it sees no signs of the U.S. strengthening its economy at
Hilton Olympic Sponsorship Continues
Hilton hotels has renewed sponsorship of the
U.S. Olympic Team, which will extend through the 2010
Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Vancouver, and the
2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games in London.
The renewal also encompasses the 2010/2012
U.S. Paralympic Team and the 2011 U.S. Pan American Team.
Thus extending its long-standing relationship with the
United States Olympic Committee (USOC).
The agreement entitles the Hilton Family of
Hotels�Hilton, Conrad, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels,
Hampton Hotels, Hilton Garden Inn, Hilton Grand Vacations,
Homewood Suites by Hilton, and The Waldorf-Astoria
Collection�to use the official hotel sponsor designation,
and the U.S. Olympic Team and U.S. Paralympic Team logos in
all advertising or marketing materials.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...04/15/2008
Ralph Lauren Barters To Become Official Olympic Team
Ralph Lauren�s clothing line Polo has signed
a contract with the U.S. Olympic Committee to provide
outfits for the 1,500 American athletes to be worn at the
Opening and Closing Ceremonies, as well as other attire
(wardrobes) to wear in the Olympic Village. Polo will be
supplying their products as an in-kind payment for the
The Olympic deal will translate into millions
in sales of Olympics-branded products that will be carried
at Polo boutiques in the U.S. and on the company�s web site
starting in mid-July. Department stores will also carry the
clothes with 10% of the sales from the Olympics-branded
products going to the USOC as royalty payments.
Goldman Sachs CEO Looks At U.S. Economy
Lloyd C. Blankfein, CEO of investment bank
Goldman Sachs, believes the economy is in a recession, and
won�t return to growth until the end of the year. He
typified the economy as the worst in 55 years. On the upside
he thinks the credit crisis, which has been hobbling
investment banks for nearly a year, is 75% along toward a
Bartering DVDs & Video Games
makes swapping books, DVDs, and video games both easy and
simple. List the books, DVDs and video games, simply by
entering the UPC code that is printed on the item, or enter
the ISBN number that is printed on the back cover of books
into the swap listing tools. That�s it...SwapSimple will
take care of the rest.
Exchange items with members who are included
in your network free. Or pay $1.00 or $2.00 per trade, when
swapping with members outside your network. Trades are
backed with a 100% money back guarantee. Membership is free
Ad Agencies Cutting Expenses
Concerns about the economy have some ad
agencies and media-buying services doing a bit of
belt-tightening. Actions taken include slowing the pace of
hiring to keeping tight controls on salaries, and trimming
various expenses such as not sending staff to award shows.
Advertising agencies have reported that many
marketers (their clients) are frozen in fear.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...04/08/2008
Former New Zealand Exchange Owner Amazed With
Wes Davis, former owner of a New Zealand
trade exchange in the mid-1990s, recently called our
offices. He and his wife are now living in Northern
California. Davis expressed his amazement when hearing the
far-reaching changes that have taken place in the worldwide
Barter Your Skills
Do you have a skill that you want to swap in
exchange for a skill that someone else can provide? If so,
there is a great web site for individuals who possess a
skill�artistic, musical, engineer, plumber, electrician, or
just about any type of skill imaginable. Whatever you�re
looking for can likely be found at Swap-A-Skill (www.swapaskill.com)
at one time or another.
Basic membership is free, but there are some
costs associated with membership upgrades. Be sure to read
the membership agreement, before signing up.
Love Baking? Check This Site Out...
If you are a person who loves baking fresh
cookies, cakes and pies, then Bake Space (www.bakespace.com)
is the perfect place to be, because its members swap cooking
and baking recipes as well as share ideas. Membership is
free and required.
Economy & Fuel Will Affect Your Airline
The slowing U.S. economy and surging jet-fuel
prices have forced an international trade group to lower its
outlook on airline profits for the second time in four
months. Domestic carriers are expected to take the biggest
The International Air Transport Association
on Tuesday said it expects profits for (both) domestic and
foreign carriers to fall to $4.5 billion this year from $5.6
billion in 2007. Several months earlier IATA had lowered its
forecast to $5 billion, from a previous estimate of $7.8
billion, due to higher oil prices and credit-market turmoil.
U.S. airlines� profits are anticipated to
fall to $1.8 billion from an estimated $2.8 billion last
year. �This could easily turn into a net loss should the
current economic environment deteriorate further,� reported
Continually Cutting Interest Rates Bad Idea
One of the leading economists in the U.S.,
Brian Wesbury of First Trust Advisors, now says the
government�s monetary policy is partly to blame for the
ongoing malaise in the financial sector.
Non-stop interest rate cuts over the past few
months may have created a perverse incentive for businesses
to postpone activity, according to Wesbury. (He says that
aggressive rate cutting has been ineffective.)
Without liquidity and capital, financial
institutions and trading vehicles are in trouble.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...04/01/2008
Global Carbon Market Undergoing Tremendous
Global trade in carbon dioxide emissions
could reach 4.2 billion tons this year, a 56% increase from
2007, according to a report from Point Carbon, an Oslo-based
The report includes a survey of the carbon
market in which more than 70% of respondents predict a
global climate agreement by 2012. The global carbon market
was worth $60 billion in 2007, an 80% increase over 2006.
(The 2008 market is expected to be worth $92 billion.)
U.S. Very Cost-Efficient Place To Operate
The auditing and consulting firm KPMG reveals
that the U.S. has moved up on the list of most
cost-efficient places around the world to operate a
business. The survey which takes place every two years
reports that only Mexico and Canada were cheaper.
Interestingly, all three countries are members of NAFTA.
Out-Of-Home Digital Forum Scheduled
The Forum, scheduled for April 23 at the Yale
Club of New York (50 Vanderbilt Avenue), focuses on the
advertising market, media buying, and planning for the
burgeoning digital out-of-home video marketplace.
Digital out-of-home media is the fastest
growing medium since the Internet. Now a $2 billion
industry, it is expected to grow dramatically in the years
ahead. Some industry pundits envision a $10 billion market
within a decade.
General Electric Believes It�s Time To Take
Advantage Of Price Adjustments
General Electric Co., among the country's
biggest real estate investors using its own money, will soon
be using other people's cash to invest.
In what some experts say is an adventurous
move, GE plans to raise cash � $1 billion to $3 billion �
from outside investors to begin investing in commercial real
estate and other properties through newly established real
estate investment funds.
GE will not be bottom-feeding for deeply
depressed or foreclosed properties. The company�s strategy
is to buy still viable properties at discounts of 10% to
Chapter 11 Business Filings Spreading In USA
Last year Chapter 11 bankruptcy filings for
businesses hit a two-year high of 6,236, according to
Jupiter eSources, an Oklahoma company that tracks the data.
They report that the pace of filings has accelerated this
year. As the credit crisis deepens law firms across the
country are betting that bankruptcy work will be their
most-promising avenue of growth.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...03/25/2008
Trade Exchange (Barter Company) Offers
Revenue Sharing For Referrals
Bill Rosenberg, founder of BarterBing in Hope
(RI), has instituted a program where members of his trade
exchange can earn a percentage of revenue generated (by
service fees) from new referrals they provide to the
Whitten Enjoying New Role In Life
Larry Whitten, a long time barter industry
veteran with the Business Exchange organization, is now
retired and enjoying his new role of grandpa. He says hello
to his peers and reports that he�s enjoying winters in
Florida and summers in Colorado.
Over $43 Million In Lender Offered At Los
National Home Auction Corporation, a
foreclosure and builder close-out auction company, completed
another blow-out auction event on Sunday, March 16, at the
Los Angeles Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles. The
event hosted an energetic and diverse crowd of approximately
2,000 people looking to purchase their first homes,
investment properties, and second or vacation homes. A total
of 1,065 bids were made on 119 homes during the all-day
Older Internet Users Feel Web Advertising &
Content Not Relevant
A recent BurstMedia survey of more than
13,000 web users 18 years and older, found that online
content providers are not meeting the needs of all age
segments. Not surprisingly, a majority of internet users 45
years and older believe online content is focused on younger
Overall, 52.0% of respondents believe
internet content is primarily focused toward people their
own age. Not surprisingly, says the study, younger
respondents are most likely to say online content is focused
on people their age. This is particularly true for the
18-to-24 year and 25-to-34 year segments.
Additionally, 55.7% of respondents 35-to-44
years perceive online content as focused toward their age
segment. Few respondents 55 years and older say internet
content is primarily focused on people their age.
Creative Television Marketing Will Take Over
Telco�s Barter Syndication
Creative Television Marketing (CTM) announced
today a major expansion of services to include commercial
advertising sales with its agreement to represent Telco
Productions� syndicated barter inventory. CTM will
immediately take over all commercial advertising sales for
Telco�s Animal Rescue, Dog Tales, and Missing...formerly
represented by Tribune Entertainment.
U.S. Consumer Feeling Pinched
By the end of 2007, 36% of consumers�
disposable income went to food, energy and medical care,
a bigger chunk of income than at any time since records were
first kept in 1960, according to Merrill Lynch.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...03/18/2008
Community Barter In Montana
Have a skill, a service, some goods or some
free time you'd like to turn into �community money?� If
you�re in the area, contact
flatheadbarterhoursExchange@yahoo.com, or P.O. Box
3423, Kalispell, Montana 59903.
China Expects E-Commerce Boom
China has surpassed the United States to
become the world�s largest internet market by number of
users. The U.S. web population was 216 million at the end of
2007. China�s higher percentage of growth coupled with its
210 million Internet users at the end of 2007, leads
estimators into believing it has replaced the U.S. as #1
E-Commerce is expected to be the next boom
sector in China, as businesses take advantage of the mass
market of consumers already online.
Google Eyes Display Ad Market
Tim Armstrong, Google�s president of
advertising and commerce for North America, says the company
would be �disappointed� if it doesn�t attain a �very
significant position� in the display ad market over the next
two years. Google considers YouTube as the �brightest light�
for the company�s display-advertising potential.
YouTube Soon To Be On Television...
TiVo Inc. has revealed that it would deliver
videos - from Google Inc�s popular web site YouTube -
directly to television screens via its digital video
TiVo disclosed the service would be available
later this year for high-speed Internet subscribers who have
TiVo Series3 DVRs. It said that users would be able to log
onto their YouTube accounts directly from their TiVo boxes.
Per Capita Income In Vietnam Growing
Last week we reported on the average global
per-capita income. While some countries are obviously much
higher than others, in Vietnam the economy has been
expanding an average of 7.5% yearly since 2000. Their
average per-capita income (84 million people) increased to
$900 last year from $600 in 2005.
SwapStyle.com Where Cosmetics & Name Brand
Fashions Can Be Bartered
describes itself as an online fashion swap party where you
can barter, sell and buy fashion, accessories, cosmetics,
shoes and lots more with people from all around the world at
any time, day or night. It can save its members money on the
name brand fashions and cosmetics that are normally
purchased at retailers at high markups.
Members can also participate in forums and
discuss the latest fashion trends and sales. Members are
only responsible for paying the actual shipping costs
associated with the items that they have traded or sold.
Membership is free and required.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...03/11/2008
Africa Barter & South Africa Business Hub
Africa Barter (http://www.africabarter.co.za)
and South Africa Business hub (http://www.sabusinesshub.co.za)
are cooperating to expand barter awareness in that part of
We found this interesting site where
classifieds and ads abound for dogs. (Click
Where�s Your Shredder?
If you have only one shredder, it belongs in
the kitchen. That�s according to a Staples study, indicating
most junk mail ends up in the kitchen trash, not the office
A Real California Housing Story
Stripped of all the realtors rhetoric that we
see in the papers here in Orange County (CA), this real life
situation reinforces today�s reality.
There was a real estate auction on March 1,
less than 5 miles from where we�re located, in an equestrian
community called Nellie Gail Ranch. The homeowner had
previously hosted 40 open houses on his property over an
18-month period without a single offer.
At the auction he sold his five-bedroom,
Mediterranean-style house in the Laguna Hills enclave for
$900,000 less than his original asking price. The asking
price was $2.09 million...the selling price $1.2 million.
Five people showed up for the auction.
Internet Growth Linked To High-Speed
By 2012, nearly 33 million U.S. households
will have broadband services with speeds of 10 mbps or
higher, capable of streaming high-definition video,
according to a new Parks Associates� North American
Broadband Market Update.
Many industry experts and economists see a
direct link between faster internet connections and the
growth of the internet economy. The country still has a way
to go, however. At the end of last year, 5.7 million (9%) of
U.S. broadband households, had reached the 10 mbps mark.
Global Per Capita Income $8,200
The latest missive from Forbes tells
us there are 1,125 billionaires in the world now.
Unfortunately, that leaves 6.5 billion or so of us who �
according to the unfailingly accurate Central Intelligence
Agency � have a global per capita income of $8,200, when
using the dollar as a benchmark.
You may be thinking that Sierra Leone�s $530
annual per capita income brings down the class curve, but
the U.S. average income is all of $37,500.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...03/04/2008
Bartercard UAE Hires Dubai-based Creative
Agencies To Expand Presence
Bartercard UAE, the regional center for
Bartercard�s operations in the Middle East, has hired Idea
Spice and Content Syndicate with the intent of raising its
profile and awareness of the Bartercard network.
Bartercard is looking to sell more franchises
for the other emirates�Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah
Barb Martin Receives Kudos From IMS CEO Don
International Monetary Systems (OTCBB:INLM)
CEO Don Mardak lavished praise upon Barb Martin, the IMS
National Sales Manager last week for her efforts in moving
the company�s organic sales to new levels.
According to Mardak the efforts of the sales
network will be the heart of the company�s future growth.
(For more on IMS�s record month of January see the story
found later in this issue.)
Barter Seed Exchange Web Site
In Olympic, Washington, there is a
barter/gifting-only seed exchange web site that is looking
to build Olympia�s farming and gardening community...one
seed at a time. Bartered classes, seeds, information, soil
amendments and/or plants are found on this community web
Internet Yellow Pages Usage Growing
Internet Yellow Pages (IYPs) accounted for
over half (51%) of all local searches online in December
2007, according to data from the Yellow Pages Association.
On average, 73 million searchers used an IYP
each month in 2007, up 16% from the previous year.
Meanwhile, print usage (use of the printed Yellow Pages),
according to the Association, remained relatively unchanged
Small Farmers Find Business Economics
For a look at how effectively forms of
credit, deposit balances, and currency serve as a means of
exchange when it comes to the ability of farmers to stay in
business�and people being able to acquire food�visit
Click here .
iTunes Battles Wal-mart
Apple�s iTunes has become the second-largest
music retailer in the U.S. behind Wal-Mart, distributing the
digital music platform (which offers more than 6 million
songs from major and independent labels) over the Web and
via sales of its iPod portable music players.
From the desk of Bob Meyer...02/26/2008
More Barter Sites
Two sites found recently are
www.teamuphere.com, which reportedly has 2,797
www.skillcycle.co.uk a social network for members to
exchange skills and services with other members; and
www.baitnet.com for fishing sites to barter links
with one another. A Long Island (NY) web site for people who
live near Nassau and Suffolk county areas is looking for
Norm Alvis Says Barter Business Is Booming
Norm Alvis of
www.edaddywarbucks.com reports to BarterNews that he
has done over $10 million in business already in 2008,
including millions in barter funding for public companies.
Unique Financing Plan Guarantees Customers
A shop in Boston�Lionette�s Market�and the
Garden of Eden restaurant, next door, have been owned by the
Lionette family for two generations. (They sell fresh,
locally-raised meat and produce.)
Now the brothers Jamey and Robert, managers
of the two entities, are making an interesting financial
proposal to the South End community to improve their
Their plan: Locals who invest $1,000 will get
a two-year stipend of $125 per week at the store�a total
return of $13,000 in food. For $5,000 the investor gets a
$55 weekly stipend for two years. A $2,500 investor gets a
10% discount on store items for two years.
Indonesia Looks To Barter For Military
Indonesia wants to barter for military
equipment from Russia. They also want to establish a
maintenance center to work on its Russian-built jets. The
proposed deals should, according to Indonesia, also include
technology transfer that will increase the production
capacity of its own industry.
Harry Schultz Says Financial Tsunami Is Upon
Financial radical Harry Schultz says we�re in
a derivative crisis and sees the real possibility for new
records of hyper-inflation...besting those of the late �70s
and early �80s. As inflation hedges he recommends art,
commercial property that yields income, and farm land.
Hoping For Better Economic Conditions With Next Leader
Now that 81-year-old Fidel Castro is retiring
(after nearly 50 years as the head of state), Cubans will no
doubt expect the next leader to improve economic conditions
in a country where monthly pay averages $15.
Yahoo Shareholders Can Expect More, If
History isn�t on Microsoft�s side when it
comes to its opening offer of $44.3 billion to Yahoo�s
shareholders. In 63% of hostile approaches over the past
five years, suitors have raised their initial offer.
(According to data from FactSet Research Systems.)
Proxy fights waged as part of hostile
acquisition attempts are far rarer. They represent less than
5% of all hostile takeovers since 2001, or 27 contests in
the desk of Bob Meyer...02/19/2008
Astounding Barter Deal With Iraq
help Russian companies win contracts with Iraq, Russia has
agreed to a most unique barter arrangement. In exchange for
launching promising joint projects in the oil and gas and
electric-power sectors, Russia has told the Iraq government,
�we will write off 93% of what you owe us, or $11.7 billion
of your $12.9 billion debt.�
Nearly Everybody Has Shopped Online�Worldwide
to the latest Nielsen Global Online Survey on internet
shopping habits, more than 85% of the world's online
population has used the internet to make a purchase. That�s
a 40% increase in the past two years.
Nielsen Company conducted its first global survey into
internet shopping trends two years ago, approximately 10% of
the world's population (627 million) had shopped online.
Within two years, this number has increased by approximately
40% to 875 million.
U.S. Small Business Owners Pessimistic
to a report on CNBC TV (cable business network) the small
business sector in the United States is at its lowest level
since January 1991, after its biggest decline ever in the
most recent survey conducted by National Federation of
Independent Business (NFIB). The report indicated there is
little hiring or business investment taking place, which is
a sure indicator of a downturn in the economy.
Donnelley Happy With
Donnelley�s yellow pages directory online business acquired
Business.com in the 4th quarter of 2007 for $345
million...besting the New York Times and Dow Jones for the
acquisition. And they�re convinced that
will prove to be an important business partner for them, as
the small business community expands its navigating of
Yahoo�s Lost Deal
Microsoft�s pursuit of Yahoo and the potential buyout of $41
billion seems staggering. But just a few years ago, in 2001
Yahoo had an opportunity to buy Google. It occurred when
Google�s co-founders Sergey Grin and Larry Page dined with
former Yahoo CEO Terry Semel and discussed a deal. The
Google co-founders wanted $3 billion to sell and Yahoo�s
Semel felt the price was tool high. Google today is worth
Speculators Walking Away Which Is Bad News
to Wachovia and Bank of America, as well as Fitch Ratings,
half of the homes listed for sale in Las Vegas are vacant.
Most of the homes were bought by investors/speculators. No
longer an appreciating asset, they have little attachment to
the homes now.
could lead to an insidious process, putting more downward
pressure on prices, and in turn giving more homeowners an
incentive to pack their bags and leave their keys in the
mailbox for the bank.
Sachs Chief Economist Jan Hatizus estimates that by the end
of 2008 some 30% of all outstanding mortgages (or 15 million
U.S. homes) will be attached to negative equity�mortgages
will be more than the homes they finance.
the desk of Bob Meyer...02/12/2008
Lance Armstrong Knows Barter�s Value
legend Lance Armstrong just completed a major barter
agreement with Richard Rosenblatt, the chairman of Demand
Media. Together they are creating a new �for-profit� web
site that DM will operate...the focus of the site will be on
health programs and cancer research.
component: Lance Armstrong (as well as his non-profit
foundation) will receive equity stakes in the media firm.
And Demand Media will retain all ad revenue created by the
new commercial site.
Two More Newbie Barter Sites
trading sites have hit cyberspace...www.GiveNTake.in
Buy & Hold Pays Off For This Investor
largest bank is shedding a large portion of its 43.6 million
Coke holdings. Sun Trust Banks has a nearly century-old
financial tie with the Coca-Cola Co. They took Coke public
in 1919. Now they�re selling their shares to reap $1
Wristwatches Improve Restaurant Service
some restaurants are beginning to use devices resembling
wristwatches to improve customer service. The devices, part
of a wireless system devised by ESP Systems, alert waiters
when food is standing by or when a new table is ready, among
also have a device at their table for paging their waiter if
they need anything. At the end of the night, managers are
provided with statistics about each waiter�s service.
Warren Buffett Feels No Sorrow For U.S.
to the billionaire investor Warren Buffett, the woes in the
U.S. financial sector are poetic justice for the bankers who
designed and sold complex investments that have since gone
of Berkshire Hathaway, also known as the �Oracle from
Omaha,� says the recent interest rate cuts mean that
low-cost funds are readily available. He also thinks that
the U.S. dollar will continue to slide until the country can
rein in the huge trade deficit. But over time he believes
the economy will do very well.
Forty Percent Of Web Users Viewed Newspaper
Sites At Year End
to the Newspaper Association of America (NAA), the average
monthly unique audience figures for newspaper web sites grew
by more than 3.6 million in 2007...a record year for the
industry and an increase of more than 6% over 2006 numbers.
Two out of five (40%) web users viewed newspaper sites at
the desk of Bob Meyer...02/05/08
$41 Trillion To Be Spent On World�s
to a report on CNBC�s financial TV channel, some $41
trillion will be spent on the world�s infrastructure
(bridges, roads, tunnels, etc.) over the next 25 years. The
commentary revealed that both Egypt and Russia have more
infrastructure plans than India or China.
also noted that in Egypt labor costs are cheaper than China.
Kudos To Campbell�s Soups
last decade Campbell�s Soup has worked to raise the
awareness for the ongoing issue of hunger in America.
They�ve made direct donations of more than 35 million cans
of soup to food banks and various hunger charities.
What�s Ahead For U.S. Economy
accounts the American economy is about to enter the 12th
recession since WWII. The last came in 2001 following the
attacks on 9/11 and roughly eighteen months after the
dot.com-fueled stock market reached its peak...before its
rapid decline through the bubble bursting.
are feeling less and less bullish about the economy, as
evidenced by their more judicious spending.
Globalization Moves Politics Into World Of
Washington to Warsaw, policy makers are now taking into
account the views and actions of countries that, until
recently, held little sway on the international scene. The
rise of China, the renewed confidence of Russia and the
growing economic muscle of countries including India and
Brazil, are shifting the center of gravity within global
the growing influence of China and Russia has provided a new
spur toward integration as European countries come to
appreciate the importance of scale in a globalized world.
Furthermore, Europe's attempt to weld 27 disparate nations
into one bloc is being imitated around the globe, from Asia
to Africa, as countries experiment with new ways to maximize
Global Assets Indicate New World Order Coming
A study by
the McKinsey Global Institute shows that while $56.1
trillion, or more than one-third, of the world�s financial
assets were held in the U.S. in 2006, the total held by
emerging markets reached $23.6 trillion. And their assets
are growing twice as fast as those in developed countries.
living in the developed world, there are clear benefits to
this new world order. Capital from the emerging markets will
cushion the blow of the current financial crisis on
businesses and consumers. And continued growth in emerging
countries will soften the effects of a possible recession
elsewhere. Over time, the global economy is not a zero-sum
game. Americans, Europeans, and Japanese can all prosper
even as their share of the world economy declines.
Malaysian Government Seeks
Self-Sufficiency Through Barter
Prime Minister Daruk Najib Razak has announced the
establishment of the Malaysian National Price Council to
create a national stockpile of commodities as a safeguard
against the impact of rising prices.
the nation�s human carbohydrate consumption comes from
imported wheat, while all of the feed for the chicken, egg,
and pork industries comes from imported corn. With producing
countries banning exports of wheat and corn, there is an
urgent need for Malaysia to abandon the normal monetary
they must resort to government-to-government barter trading
to secure our imports of corn and wheat, without which the
population of 27 million will face starvation. Malaysia can
barter its palm oil with countries like India and China, in
return for wheat and corn.
will allow Malaysia to undertake an immediate science
program, rapidly increasing agricultural production with
21st century technology.
the desk of Bob Meyer...01/29/08
Bartercard & BBX
Working With New Australian Business Directory
launched in late 2007, is a search engine and business
directory that lists genuine Australian businesses. Every
business listing on Clickfind must provide an ABN number.
is Australian-owned and is based in Brisbane. The firm is a
member of the Australian barter exchanges Bartercard and BBX.
information go to
China�s Growth Impressive
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rose to 24.7 trillion yuan
($3.4 trillion) in 2007, from 22.1 trillion yuan ($3.1
trillion) in 2006. The U.S. GDP for 2007 was $13 trillion.
Restaurant Trends To Expect In 2008
attack�Restaurants are hoping that small portions, big
flavors, and low prices will lure in hungry snackers. Mini
burgers and wraps caught on late in 2007. From fast food to
fine dining, restaurants may soon compete to create the
fastest and most filling snacks.
food�Fast food is going gourmet. Popular celebrity chefs are
branching out with convenient, fast, casual restaurants that
promise high quality food, fine cooking and bold
flavors...all on a 30-minute lunch break. Bobby Flay, Rick
Bayless, and Wolfgang Puck have invested in fast casual
operations, bringing their unique culinary flairs to the
masses. Expect more celebrity chefs to get in the mix this
Consumers Seek Information In Many Places
Outside of TV
to the BIGresearch latest Simultaneous Media Survey, the
only way for people to keep up with the deluge of media
options is to multitask with other media. Specifically, says
Gary Drenik, President of BIGresearch, �TV's influence on
consumers to purchase products declined, whereas new media
options such as web radio, satellite radio, instant
messaging, and blogging all increased.
seem to be seeking information from digital platforms while
TV has traditionally been viewed as a brand building medium,
which isn�t providing the requisite information.�
can target, be timely, and deliver value to consumers, such
as coupons/direct mail, radio, yellow pages, newspapers and
newspaper inserts, all increased in influence-to-purchase as
consumers are looking to stretch budgets in a slowing
Our Changing World
Sunday something else will kick off besides Super Bowl
XLII...the world�s largest focus-group study on television
advertising, courtesy of a burgeoning online social network
being propagated by consumer research giant Nielsen Company.
New England Patriots and the New York Giants take the field,
tens-of-thousands of online users will take to their
computer screens to rate the TV commercials running during
the coverage of the game. It will be the first
commercialized use of Hey! Nielsen, the online social
community launched last summer with a goal of creating a new
method for measuring social buzz and interaction around
brands, media, entertainment, and sports properties.
From the desk of Bob
Buckle Your Seat-belts For Impending Downturn
recession may be worse than the other two serious economic
downturns that have hit the U.S. economy in the past 25
years, according to The Wall Street Journal. Three
reasons why: the housing market is horrible, energy prices
are very high, and the job market is weakening.
Ultimate Sales University Promises Results
The CEO of
the American Basketball Association (ABA) and long time
marketing whiz, Joe Newman, has put his passion for quality
training in reach of everyone at
China Soon To Be Largest Web Market
number of internet users in China soared 53% to 210 million
at the end of 2007, up from 137 million at the end of 2006.
China is now just 5 million short of passing the USA.
Gift Card Sales Continue Dramatic Growth
sales totaled $97 billion in 2007, up from $83 billion in
2006, according to data from the Tower Group and the New
attention by the media has been given to �breakage,� which
is the money retailers get when gift cards are not used or
leftover funds remain. Tower put breakage amount at $7.8
billion for 2007.
Gender Differences On Entrepreneurship
credit card�s survey of 1,000 small businesses shows how
different men and women are. In short, whether you choose
business ownership to have greater control or more
flexibility may depend on your sex.
female respondents, 32% wanted flexibility and 17% wanted to
be their own boss. Men were more evenly divided: 27% wanted
to be their own boss and 24% sought flexibility.
of male business owners think women have an easier time
starting businesses, and 34% think men have it easier. Among
women, 20% of small-business owners think men have an easier
time starting businesses; 15% think women have it easier.
New Vacation Booking Web Site
is a new vacation-booking web site for home, condo and cabin
rentals in North America, Central America and the Caribbean.
They�re offering a 10% discount on bookings made before
February 14, with a cap of $250 in savings per book. Use
promo code �BeyondHotels� during checkout.
From the desk of Bob
Countertrade Will Continue To Grow
Barter done at its highest level is referred to as
countertrade, offsets, counter purchase, and other names.
Although the world is getting smaller in some ways, thanks
to technology, countertrade is not going to disappear. Quite
Countertrade will continue to grow because world trade is
growing, and countertrade is an inevitable part of that
trade. Because as developing nations become more involved in
expanding world commerce, they will need countertrade to
offset their lack of hard currency (U.S. dollar or the euro)
to fulfill their needs.
Other factors that will effect the use of countertrade are
technical knowledge, unemployment, and nationalism which
often leads to protectionism.
Is $1 Million �Chump Change?�
According to some thinking, having a million dollars in net
worth�including the value of your homes(s) and certain
retirement assets�is chump change. Yet having a net worth of
$1.4 puts one in the top 5% of Americans, according to the
Federal Reserve. Interestingly, studies show that when asked
how much it takes to be rich, people always give a number
that is twice their current net worth or income.
Creative Thinking Adds Up
Salesbuzz.entrepreneur.com columnist Ray Silverstein
gave �barter� a plug in a recent column titled, �Creative
Thinking Adds Up.�
60% Of Small Businesses Advertise In Yellow
Local businesses (6 out of 10) stick with old-school yellow
pages to get new customers, according to a phone survey from
AT&T Advertising & Publishing.
And an independent survey by research firm Kelsey Group
finds that 61% of Americans say they turn to the printed
yellow-pages listings to find local business information,
while 13% say they use search engines.
World�s Third-Largest Advertising Market
The U.S., with its ad agency giants, holds first place in
the advertising market, followed by Japan. In third place is
China, with the possibility of moving into second place next
year. Omnicom Group has recently bought a minority stake in
Chinese marketing concern Shunya Communications Group.
Omnicom also owns Icon-International, a U.S. corporate
barter company located.
From the desk of Bob
IRTA Works With IRS On
last few years many of IRTA�s North American members (and
other industry participants) have reported an increase in
IRS civil penalties related to non-matching TINs (tax
information number) and back-up withholding issues.
the IRS has stepped-up their enforcement efforts resulting
in severe monetary penalties and bank seizures causing undue
hardship for International Reciprocal Trade Association
members and other third-party recordkeepers.
maintained an excellent relationship with IRS and currently
serves on the IRS Information Reporting Program Advisory
Committee (IRPAC). Because of this special role IRTA holds
with the IRS, they are in an unprecedented position to
assist members in dealing with and avoiding these unpleasant
continually supports its members that are experiencing
IRS/TIN reporting problems by providing guidance, updated
contacts and regulatory information.
information on services and membership see
Conley, a 46-year-old Stanford MBA, envisions himself as a
Karmic Capitalist. Why? His company, Joie deVivre
has boutique hotels that are niche- and life-style
oriented...offering deep emotional connections with guests.
unique properties, that stretch from Napa Valley to Los
Angeles, offer personality tests guiding guests to a hotel
based on its style and persona�not price. Four years ago 80%
of the company�s web driven reservations came from
third-party (vacation/travel) sites. Since then that number
has plummeted to 10% and falling, reflecting a reversal that
indicates most patrons now coming directly to their site.
From the desk of Bob
Offbeat Company Looks For More Barter
ambitious, 36-year-old Damon Carson, the owner of an
Americon icon�the kiddie ride (www.kiddierideusa.com)�is
looking for win-win trades on a direct basis as well as
through trade exchanges.
sells his kiddie rides to a diverse group of
customers...from doctor�s offices to corporations for
branding purposes, from car dealerships and collectors to
homeowners, grandparents and others. Customization is
Carson at (800) 448-6888 ext. 1, or email him at email@example.com.
Bill Gross Sees Challenging Days Ahead In
Californian Bill Gross, a billionaire and manager of the
world�s biggest bond fund at Newport Beach-based Pimco, sees
a mild recession in 2008 amid the worst housing slump in 16
years...and maybe even longer as the numbers come in. He
contends the U.S. economy will grow as little as 1% on
average next year. (Note: Such a prediction is extremely
bullish for the barter business.)
December newsletter, Gross also pointed out that we are
witnessing the breakdown of our modern banking system.
Two Popular Travel-Search Sites Merge
SideStep.com merging, it promises to give consumers
access to more comprehensive rates and availability data.
The merger means the new company, Kayak, will be the
fifth-largest travel site in search volume.
Network For Massage Professionals
worldwide community for certified bodyworkers, bodywork
students, and bodywork enthusiasts is found at
www.massageexchange.com. (This is not a dating
site or a site for people seeking erotic activities.)
Venture Capitalists Zero-In On Clean
big bet for venture capitalists is with clean technology,
according to a survey by the National Association of Venture
Capital. Some 81% of those surveyed think clean technology
will be the investors� top pick in 2008. It�s estimated that
from $20 billion to $29 billion will be invested in 2008,
compared to $27 billion in 2007.
World Bank Looks At World�s New GDP
Bank is reworking global economic statistics for 146
countries with more-accurate rankings of economic
might...comparing the cost of commodities in different
nations. Under this new way of measurement, the global gross
domestic product is $55 trillion. (The U.S. has 23% share of
GDP, China has 10%, India 4%, and Russia 3%.)
Housing Slump�s End Tied To New Construction
builders hold the key to the U.S. housing slump, according
to a group of economists. There are now 2.1 million vacant
homes for sale, up from 500,000 at the beginning of 2006.
Until the overhang is worked off, it�s hard to see the
decline in home prices abating.
it take to work off the inventory of vacant homes on the
market? Less homebuilding...about a million less homes being
built annually for the coming year. With likely starts for
the next year estimated at 1 million to 1.5 million, that
means the answer to the housing slump would be home starts
of 500,000. Not likely.
Here & There. . .
Advertise your vacation rentals for up to 12 months at
and restaurants can buy direct from manufacturers through an
online catalog at
for a house to rent anywhere in the U.S.? Check out