Category Archives: Business twists and turns

Businesses more cautious to keep their doors open

Most business owners and managers I talk have written off the balance of 2020. They are just trying to stay alive until the new year. I’m by nature an optimist but I have no assurances for them that a major … Read the rest

Consumer action trumps regulatory re-openings, protestors

The marketplace reality is sinking in that the re-opening of the economy has less to do with regulators at the local, state and federal levels than it has to do with customers. Leaders of The Historic West Bend Theatre, now … Read the rest

For business owners, hard to fathom future

What’s a business owner to do? The most commonly used word in the business world today is “unprecedented.” The street-smart translation of that word is that no one -- absolutely no one – knows what is going to come to … Read the rest

Evers faces two-sided trade-off equation

Remember back just a decade ago when job creation in Wisconsin was the central issue that could win or lose elections. Scott Walker’s central theme when he won the governorship in 2010 was his promise to create 250,000 jobs in … Read the rest

Dealing with a double-edged sword: pandemic, depression

What’s worse, a pandemic or an economic depression? By now, it has dawned on most Americans, not all, that we, all of us, are facing a double-edged sword that is going to cause havoc on both our physical and economic … Read the rest

Obituaries give life to community papers

The grim reaper who has swung his scythe at community newspapers may turn out to be their savior. The end-of-life accounts are providing an unexpected source of revenues, which helps to offset the loss of newspaper advertising and subscription revenue. … Read the rest

Trump’s tariffs won’t help Trump country

President Trump ignition of trade wars will do no favors for Wisconsin, a state that helped to carry him to the White House. He won 10 pivotal electoral votes here in 2016, partly by promising to bring back manufacturing jobs … Read the rest

Murphy knows more than sports pundits, by far

Since when did sports reporters and columnists become business consultants? They have been writing like the latter as they cover the reorganization of the Green Bay Packers. Back in my day as a newsman, reporters reported and columnists did some … Read the rest

Rockwell better off as stand-alone corporation

Corporate consolidations, like the one proposed by Emerson Electric for a takeover of Rockwell Automation, don’t always turn out like they were cracked up to be. There is the short-term allure of a pop in share value, 17% for Rockwell … Read the rest

Lion of Wall Street jaundiced about going public

Byron Trott

It’s always heartening to interact with a big shot who doesn’t act like one. Such is Byron Trott, who spoke to a full house of Milwaukee business people last week at a fundraiser for “Make a Difference,” which helps students … Read the rest