Money Matters - Simplified


Redskins suspend Haynesworth

Ashburn, Va. -- Defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth has been suspended without pay for the rest of the season by the Washington Redskins, the team said Tuesday.

The Redskins issued a release charging Haynesworth, who signed a seven-year, $100 million contract with the team in 2009, with "conduct detrimental to the club."

Haynesworth has been unhappy with the Redskins since Mike Shanahan was hired as the team's coach last January and instituted a new defensive scheme. Haynesworth was late to report to training camp and has appeared in eight of Washington's games this season.

Harry Potter Understands QE2


Economists, politicians, and taxidermists have been all a-twitter over the past couple weeks with talk about Ben Bernanke's latest gambit to kick-start the U.S. economy, QE2. The general consensus is that Ben Bernanke is out of his mind, blindly driving the U.S. economy off a cliff.

Russian, in drought, bans grain exports

Moscow -- Russia said Thursday it would suspend selling grain abroad for at least five months because of a prolonged drought withering wheat and other crops in the field.

The move will shift the focus of grain exports abruptly, as Russia is one of the world's largest wheat producers, The New York Times reported Thursday.

Wheat prices on the Chicago Board of Trade have risen in recent weeks and spiked higher Wednesday with the announcement.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin called the export ban necessary "to prevent a rise in domestic food prices … to preserve the number of cattle and build up reserves for next year."

"As the saying goes, reserves don't make your pocket heavy," Putin said.

Canopy to be erected to catch pigeon poop

Kansas City, Mo. -- Community leaders in Kansas City, Mo., say they will suspend a fabric canopy under a highway to catch pigeon waste to try to keep a sidewalk clean.

A joint project of the Crossroads Community Association and the Kansas City Design Center, the canopy is intended to be hung under the Interstate 35 bridge over Southwest Boulevard, a popular roosting spot for pigeons that slime the sidewalk, making it difficult for pedestrians traversing the Crossroads Arts District, The Kansas City Star reported.

BP to suspend dividend payments

London -- British petroleum giant BP is placing $2.4 billion in an escrow account to cover liabilities in the Gulf of Mexico, sources told The Times of London.

The funds would come from a suspension of second quarter dividend payments, which would continue until the company can get a clear assessment on the costs of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the gulf, which began April 20 with a deadly oil rig explos
ion and has become the largest oil spill disaster in U.S. history.

"We are considering all options on the dividend. But no decision has been made," Chief Executive Officer Tony Hayward said.

However, sources said the company plans to announce a suspension of second quarter dividends July 27 and further dividend suspensions are possible.