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CEO Daily Brief – Mar. 1, 2011

3M CEO Says Obama Is 'Anti-Business' 3M CEO George Buckley deserves a medal for his honesty. He has criticized President …

3M CEO Says Obama Is 'Anti-Business'

3M CEO George Buckley deserves a medal for his honesty. He has criticized President Barack Obama as being "anti-business," adding that Obama has not done anything to improve the White House's relationship with Corporate America.

In an interview with The Financial Times, Buckley called Obama's policies "Robin Hood-esque" and said manufacturers like 3M may have to move operations to other countries in order to stay competitive.

"We know what his instincts are … he is anti business," Buckley said.

Buckley’s comments come as Obama promotes a seemingly pro-business agenda. Obama points with pride at the Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, chaired by GE CEO Jeff Immelt, which held its first meeting last week. Obama also recently met with tech CEOs.

Another member of the panel, Intel CEO Paul Otellini, was critical of the Obama administration's handling of the economic recovery in September.

But the reality comes from Buckley. He says that his company – which is considered highly innovative – "will do business where it's good and friendly."

"There is a sense among companies that [the United States] is a difficult place to do business," Buckley told the FT. "We've got a real choice between manufacturing in Canada or Mexico – which tend to be more pro-business – and America."

For more about 3M, as reported by Money,please click here.


Stock Market to Resume Trading on March 1 in Egypt

Egypt’s stock market will resume trading on March 1 after a month that saw it closed because of the protests that led to the crumbling of President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year government.

The government has named a new head of the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority and enacted new rules that will try to limit losses when the market reopens.

“They’re trying to limit the drop as much as possible,” Mohamed Radwan, head of international sales at Pharos Holding for Financial Investment, told Bloomberg. “Investors were frustrated with the market closure so the resumption is essential. There shouldn’t be a fear of the market taking a hit because those buying at a discount will boost the market in the long term.”

Among the new rules is a 10 percent circuit breaker on the daily price movement of shares, Bloomberg said. In addition, there is a reduction in trading hours by one to three, and a ban on margin trading.

These were all well-thought-out steps by the new government. Business needs to see confidence in the economy in order for companies to remain trading partners with Egypt. If the market gets into a slump other steps may be needed. But in the meantime, the opening of the stock exchange in Egypt also shows the nation’s commitment to freedom, private property and free enterprise. Hopefully, that will continue.

For more about the stock market in Egypt, as reported by Bloomberg, please click here.


New Bosses May Be Temps

An increasing number of employees may find they have a temp as their boss. According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, over 9% of companies say they use temporary workers in management functions to a "high" or "very high extent," citing a survey by the Institute for Corporate Productivity.

In addition, over 17% of companies say they frequently use temps in areas such as engineering and science.

Lorrie Lykins, director of research services for the institute, said companies may be looking for temps to “shepherd reorganizations,” or handle “layoffs or other transitions.”

 "It can be less painful to have a contingent manager do that," she told The Journal.

But there are drawbacks. Having temps in higher-level roles can affect the attitudes of the permanent employees they work with, said Joseph Broschak, a management professor at the University of Arizona.

"Full-time employees wonder what it means and if they're valued less because temps have replaced some of them," he told The Journal. Permanent employees also may “question the long-term viability of their department,” The Journal said.

About 16% of low-performing companies say they frequently used temps as managers, compared to 7% of high-performing companies, The Journal said.

For more about temps as bosses, as reported by The Wall Street Journal, please click here.

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