What's Important in the Financial World (2/26/2013)


Yahoo! Bans Telecommuting

For some reason, investors and the rest of the world are fascinated by the decision of Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) management to halt the ability of people to work from remote offices. Now, all the Yahooligans will need to show up at the firm's offices. Some observers believe that employees will quit, particularly valuable ones. Other experts think that some workers are more productive outside a formal environment. According to The New York Times:

A memo explaining the policy change, from the company's human resources department, says face-to-face interaction among employees fosters a more collaborative culture — a hallmark of Google's approach to its business.

In trying to get back on track, Yahoo is taking on one of the country's biggest workplace issues: whether the ability to work from home, and other flexible arrangements, leads to greater productivity or inhibits innovation and collaboration. Across the country, companies like Aetna, Booz Allen Hamilton and Zappos.com are confronting these trade-offs as they compete to attract and retain the best employees.

CME Merger Talks

Deutsche Börse and CME Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CME) talked about a merger of the two big exchanges, and then apparently they did not. The consolidation of the sector has left some exchanges feeling small compared to the newly created giants. Managements of the two exchanges must have believe that they can make it on their own. The Wall Street Journal reports:

The discussions, which haven't progressed into formal merger talks, illustrate the pressure on exchanges to expand by fusing their operations following a multiyear slide in trading activity.

It also reflects the stepped-up challenge to CME as rivals forge deals to create stronger competition to the Chicago-based company.

Deutsche Börse said in a statement Monday it isn't in merger negotiations with CME Group and is focused on "organic growth."

A spokeswoman for CME declined to comment.

Gas Prices Creep Up

Gasoline prices have risen again. Yesterday, according to AAA Fuel Gauge, the price of a gallon of regular nationwide cost $3.782, compared to $3.777 the day before and $3.347 a month ago. So $4 gas must be just around the corner.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Market Open Tagged: CME, featured, YHOO