Thursday, February 27, 2014
Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines
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FDIC-Insured Institutions Earned $40.3B 2013 4th Q
Commercial banks and savings institutions insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) reported aggregate net income of $40.3 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013, a $5.8 billion (16.9 percent) increase from the $34.4 billion in earnings that the industry reported a year earlier. This is the 17th time in the last 18 quarters — since the third quarter of 2009 — that earnings have registered a year-over-year increase. The improvement in earnings was mainly attributable to an $8.1 billion decline in loan-loss provisions. Lower income stemming from reduced mortgage activity and a drop in trading revenue contributed to a year-over-year decline in net operating revenue (the sum of net interest income and total noninterest income). More than half of the 6,812 insured institutions reporting (53 percent) had year-over-year growth in quarterly earnings. The proportion of banks that were unprofitable fell to 12.2 percent, from 15 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012.
Martin J. Gruenberg,
"The trend of slow but steady improvement that has been underway in the banking industry since 2009 continued to gain ground," said FDIC Chairman Martin J. Gruenberg. "Asset quality improved, loan balances were up, and there were fewer troubled institutions. However, challenges remain in the industry. Narrow margins, modest loan growth, and a decline in mortgage refinancing activity have made it difficult for banks to increase revenue and profitability. Nonetheless, these results show a continuation of the recovery in the banking industry."
The average return on assets (ROA), a basic yardstick of profitability, rose to 1.10 percent in the fourth quarter from 0.96 percent a year ago. The average return on equity (ROE) increased from 8.53 percent to 9.87 percent.
Fourth quarter net operating revenue totaled $166.1 billion, a decline of $2.8 billion (1.7 percent) from a year earlier, as noninterest income fell by $4.2 billion (6.6 percent) and net interest income increased by $1.4 billion (1.3 percent). The average net interest margin — the difference between the average yield banks earn on loans and other investments and the average cost of funding those investments — was 3.28 percent, the highest average of any quarter in 2013, but down from 3.34 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012.
Total noninterest expenses were $5.8 billion (5.3 percent) lower than in the fourth quarter of 2012, as litigation expenses fell by $3.1 billion at one large institution. Banks set aside $7 billion in provisions for loan losses, a reduction of $8.1 billion (53.7 percent) compared to a year earlier. This is the 17th consecutive quarter that the industry has reported a year-over-year decline in quarterly loss provisions.
Asset quality indicators continued to improve as insured banks and thrifts charged off $11.7 billion in uncollectible loans during the quarter, down $6.8 billion (37 percent) from a year earlier. The amount of noncurrent loans and leases — those 90 days or more past due or in nonaccrual status — fell by $14 billion (6.3 percent) during the quarter. The percentage of loans and leases that were noncurrent declined to 2.62 percent, the lowest level since the 2.35 percent posted at the end of the third quarter of 2008.
Net income over the full year of 2013 totaled $154.7 billion, an increase of $13.6 billion (9.6 percent) compared to 2012. The average full-year ROA rose to 1.07 percent from 1.00 percent in 2012. More than half of all institutions (54.2 percent) reported higher net income in 2013, while only 7.8 percent were unprofitable. This is the lowest annual proportion of unprofitable institutions since 2005.
Financial results for the fourth quarter of 2013 and the full year are contained in the FDIC's latest Quarterly Banking Profile, which was released today. Also among the findings:
Total loan balances increased. Loan balances increased by $90.9 billion (1.2 percent) in the three months ending December 31, as all major loan categories except one- to four-family residential real estate loans experienced growth during the quarter. Loans to commercial and industrial (C&I) borrowers increased by $27.3 billion (1.7 percent), loans secured by nonfarm nonresidential real estate properties rose by $17.1 billion (1.6 percent), and credit card balances posted a $14.3 billion (2.1 percent) increase. Home equity loan balances declined for a 19th consecutive quarter, falling by $6.9 billion (1.3 percent). Balances of other loans secured by one- to four-family residential real estate properties fell by $13 billion (0.7 percent), as the amount of mortgage loans sold during the quarter exceeded by $29 billion the amount of mortgage loans originated and intended for sale. For the 12 months through December 31, total loan and lease balances were up by $197.3 billion (2.6 percent).
Mortgage activity remained well below year-ago levels. One- to four-family residential real estate loans originated and intended for sale were $307.7 billion (62 percent) lower than in the fourth quarter of 2012, as rising interest rates in the first half of 2013 reduced the demand for mortgage refinancings. Noninterest income from the sale, securitization and servicing of mortgages was $2.8 billion (34 percent) lower than a year ago. Realized gains on available-for-sale securities also were lower than a year ago, as higher medium- and long-term interest rates reduced the market values of fixed-rate securities. Banks reported $506 million in pretax income from realized gains in the fourth quarter, a decline of $1 billion (66.6 percent) from a year ago.
The number of "problem banks" fell for the 11th consecutive quarter. The number of banks on the FDIC's "Problem List" declined from 515 to 467 during the quarter. The number of "problem" banks is down by almost half from the recent high of 888 at the end of the first quarter of 2011. Two FDIC-insured institutions failed in the fourth quarter of 2013, down from eight in the fourth quarter of 2012. For all of 2013, there were 24 failures, compared to 51 in 2012.
The Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) balance continued to increase. The unaudited DIF balance — the net worth of the fund — rose to $47.2 billion as of December 31 from $40.8 billion as of September 30. Assessment income and a reduction in estimated losses from failed institution assets were the primary contributors to growth in the fund balance. Estimated insured deposits increased 0.7 percent, and the DIF reserve ratio — the fund's balance as a percentage of estimated insured deposits — rose to 0.79 percent as of December 31 from 0.68 percent as of September 30. A year ago, the DIF reserve ratio was 0.44 percent. By law, the DIF must achieve a minimum reserve ratio of 1.35 percent by 2020.
The complete Quarterly Banking Profile is available at http://www2.fdic.gov/qbp on the FDIC Web site.
# # #
Congress created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in 1933 to restore public confidence in the nation's banking system. The FDIC insures deposits at the nation's banks and savings associations, 6,812 as of December 31, 2013. It promotes the safety and soundness of these institutions by identifying, monitoring and addressing risks to which they are exposed. The FDIC receives no federal tax dollars — insured financial institutions fund its operations
New Leasing Business Up in January
(Chart: Leasing News)
Despite the winter storm playing havoc in most of the country, January was the best month recorded by the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association MFLI-25 report, showing the economy is coming back.
ELFA President and CEO William G. Sutton, CAE, said: "At the start of the new year, equipment finance activity picked up where it left off for most of 2013. New business volume shows modest, incremental growth while credit losses continue at historic lows. With fiscal pressures in Washington subsiding, at least for the time being, and most major U.S. economic indicators showing positive signs, we are hopeful that these factors will help promote a favorable climate for continued investment by U.S. businesses in capital equipment in 2014 and beyond."
Martha Ahlers, VP/COO, United Leasing, Inc., said, "The Monthly Confidence Index results for the last two reported periods provide continued optimism for the year ahead. Beginning 2014 with a 63.3 MCI, the 2nd highest mark in the last 24 months, is also extremely promising and serves as evidence of stability and positive velocity within our industry. In the Monthly Leasing and Finance Index, origination volumes year-over-year are also up, while maintaining historically low delinquency and charge-offs; an indication of continued health. The combination of these positive indicators creates a huge amount of excitement for potential growth."
The ELFA numbers reflect the January report from the Equipment Leasing and Finance Foundation that found confidence “the second highest index in the two years.”
Valerie Hayes Jester, President, Brandywine Capital Associates, Inc., said, “I am optimistic that there is increasing demand for equipment and therefore financing to acquire that equipment. The brutal winter experienced by a significant portion of this country has slowed down many projects that would have been in progress by now. I am hoping that the last third of this quarter will show the signs we had experienced at year end, as demand increased.”
Thomas Jaschik, President, BB&T Equipment Finance:
Kenneth Collins, CEO, Susquehanna Commercial Finance, Inc.
(Year Over Year Comparison)
click image to make larger
ELFA MLFI-25 Participants
Leasing Industry Help Wanted
Kathy Havlik promoted to Vice President & District Manager, Key Equipment Finance; based in New York City area. She works with business bank and middle market clients to finance their business equipment acquisitions in the Hudson Valley, Greater NYC, and New Jersey markets. She joined Key in June, 2008 as a leasing sales associate and January, 2011, was named leasing manager. Education: University of Colorado, Boulder - Leeds School of Business, Business Administration, Finance (2004–2008). Activities and Societies: Delta Gamma, University of Colorado Student Union, Alpha Kappa Psi, Order of Omega.
Michelle (Cunningham) Vervaeke named Used Equipment Manager at Pape Material Handling, Seattle, Washington. She continues as Owner, Asset Management Associates, LLC (June 2009–Present).) Previously she was Territory Manager, Pape's Material Handling (April 2006–June 2009); Sales Manager, Faulkner Material Handline (FMH) (August 1992–March 2006); Organizations: American Society of Appraisers (January 2011–Present); Candidate Member, Machinery & Equipment; Women Business Owners, Member (February 2013–Present); Equipment Leasing and Finance Association, National Equipment Finance Association. Education: Metropolitan State College of Denver (1994–1996); Parks Community College of Denver, Associate's degree, Business Administration and Management, General (1985–1987).
The Controversy Today about Dun & Bradstreet
Last year I began getting several e-mails from D & B Credibility Corp/ D & B that Lease Police, Inc., had multiple serious complaints against it that would greatly affect any credit report with Dun & Bradstreet. I did look into this knowing that there were no such complaints and Dun & Bradstreet Corporation would surely not be involved in a caper as onerous as this. Several firms that I know acknowledged that they fell for this marketing ploy because they were intimidated. Our IT man pulled one of the complaint e-mails with an attachment in a security-proof computer and found it had no complaint but a Trojan virus.
On February 3, 2014 Leasing News reported that a class-action lawsuit had been filed against Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corporation (DBCC). Dun & Bradstreet Corporation, and Dun & Bradstreet, Inc...The complaint is 31 pages long. To quote the lawsuit, “Some years ago, D & B developed a credit monitoring product called Self Awareness Solutions (SAS) which it marketed and sold to small businesses. Upon information and belief the SAS product was identically or substantially similar to the CreditBuilder products at issue in this case”. The lawsuit further adds,” In order to avoid further scrutiny and litigation over the SAS products, while continuing to reap profits from the credit monitoring, D& B sold its credit monitoring line of business to DBCC in August 2010 for $10 million in cash and annual royalties; a deal estimated at $100 million. D & B continues to maintain post-sale control over the business credit information, credit reporting system and credit rating services that are integral to the CreditBuilder products”.
The lawsuit contains 7 counts against the defendants ranging from 2 counts against the Sherman Act, The Washington State Consumer Protection Act, Negligent Misrepresentation/Concealment, Fraudulent Concealment, Breach of Contract, and Unjust Enrichment.
The Wall Street Journal has reported that The Federal Trade Commission has received 551 complaints against D & B between January, 2010 and early June, 2013 for its sales tactics.
All of the above information is very disheartening as my experience with D & B goes back almost 60 years as an employee, a leasing equipment funder, user, and more recently, as a very minor competitor. But first let me tell you of my time as an employee.
One week after graduating from college I tracked down from my home in Pelham, N.Y. for a job interview to the then headquarters of Dun & Bradstreet at 99 Church Street in New York City. My research showed that it had been established in 1841 as The Mercantile Agency by Lewis Tappan, a noted abolitionist who played a major role in freeing the illegally enslaved captives of the Amistad. It had grown immensely after changing its name to its present form and had become an international force in credit investigations and reporting on business establishments.
Upon entering the lobby, I was awe-struck by the 6 foot high Georg Lober statue, “Man’s Confidence in Man” It was the preamble of everything I learned that day about the early days of credit and the development of the D & B philosophy of credit reporting and risk. The statue told many stories of man’s confidence in his fellow man which flowed both ways to buyer and seller.
After I was hired and the first few months of training, they rotated me monthly from one type of business activity to another. It was the fur, diamond, flowers, clothing, high fashion districts, etc. Next it was manufacturing, wholesale, and retail establishments. After 2 years, I was no longer a trainee but an experienced reporter who could communicate and relate to the business owner in preparing a report on his company which reflected my fair appraisal.
At last I was made a Country Reporter, working from my home, in charge of writing every type of report then sold by D & B for the eastern half of Westchester County, just north of New York City. I was now holding the same job as four U.S. Presidents. (Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, Grover Cleveland and William McKinley). New assignments arrived every day and I had five days to complete them with my quota of 60 reports a week. On any day you could be assigned to interview a famous person, do a survey on the use or non-use of golf carts at great golf courses such as Winged Foot C.C., or a just a revision to IBM’s report.
The one thing I did learn was the respect I was accorded as a representative of D & B. Even when a business man did not reveal his financial statements, he was otherwise helpful.
As a leasing equipment funder, my chief complaint was the poor quality of the reports that showed page after page of mathematical estimates of sales, employees etc., and no first-hand observation of operations. Apparently, D & B found that having local representation was just too expensive but that was how the “brand” was built and some part of that should have been retained.
This writer takes no position on the legality or illegality of charges in the class action. However, the actions alleged in the class action do not pass the “smell test” of the reputation built by the founders, management over the ages, and simple employees like myself. I would prefer that this case goes to trial and let a jury and judge decide what is right and wrong here. An outcome of a no indication of guilt by the Defendants and a multi-million settlement to the Plaintiffs (with 80% going to the attorneys) would be of no benefit to anyone including the Defendants.
Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP
((Please Click on Bulletin Board to learn more information))
FSG Leasing, Inc. is now FSG Capital, Inc.
Joining the trend away from leasing in the title of their company, Bruce J. Winter, Founder and President, announces FSG Leasing, Inc., Laurel, Maryland, has formally changed its name to FSG Capital, Inc.”… to better reflect its full range of financial services and middle market product offerings.”
“After twenty-three years of servicing the needs of middle market corporate clients, the exciting rebranding process and name change to FSG Capital, Inc. has helped the company to reflect upon the multiple capabilities and broad spectrum of solutions that the organization provides,” Winter said. “The new name and corporate branding reinforces the values of the company and it captures the comprehensive and consultative business approach of FSG.”
The company specializes in middle market transactions ranging from $100,000 to over $10 million for customers operating in a broad spectrum of industries including, but not limited to, printing, packaging, manufacturing, transportation, scientific, information technology, construction and more.
Leasing News Advisor
Ralph is our newest advisory board member, joining June 26, 2013. For many years he has contributed, recently becoming Associate Editor for the news edition, checking spelling, grammar, punctuation, as well as noting other errors or making suggestions for the story. It is a pleasure working with him as he has a rich knowledge not only of leasing and finance history, but American history ("This Day in American History" one of his favorite features.)
Ralph is Project Management Coordinator for comScore, Inc., Reston, Virginia; a global digital analytics company providing online and mobile data and analytical tools to many of the world's largest enterprises, carriers, agencies, and publishers.
His role has been focused upon the telecom and mobile verticals and has included diverse projects involving FASB revenue recognition, process analytics, CRM effectiveness, marketing response analysis, training, knowledge sharing, and sales and client service support.
Project Management Coordinator
As a reader of Leasing News, Ralph has been a long time contributor and a resource of history . His background is quite unique to his present position as his equipment leasing past includes: region manager, Ingersoll-Rand Financial Services; vice president, NCR Credit; vice president of sales, AT&T Capital Corporation; sr. vice president, sales & marketing, Newcourt Financial; co-founder, vice president, general manager, Dell Financial Services; v.p. & general manager, Western Star Finance; director, Canon Financial Services; and vice-president, broker services, Marlin Leasing. He has broad and successful business unit general management experience in both indirect and direct equipment leasing as a captive lessor and vendor provider that began as a credit manager. He has also made the change into analytics as it relates to consumer demographics, adoption, and behavior in this digital age.
Ralph and Beth recently celebrated their 46th wedding anniversary, surrounded by their three daughters, four grandchildren, and two sons-in-law. An avid reader, Ralph also has been a lifelong baseball fan dating back to Ebbets Field and the Polo Grounds, and remains a die-hard Yankees fan. He also believes in getting his money's worth on the golf course as measured by the number of strokes!
Leasing Association Conferences---Update
2014 Leasing Association Conferences
2013 Conference Report by Bruce Kropschot
March 31-April 2
April 23 - 25
May 1 - 3
NAELB has negotiated a special group rate of $139/night for single/double or $159/night for king deluxe, from Wednesday, April 30 - Saturday, May 3.
May 7 - 9
November 6 - 8
November 12 - 14
CFA Related Conferences
CFA Network Calendar
ELFA ---2014 Schedule of Conferences, Workshops
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Adopt a Pet
The Decline of US Small Banks (2000–2013)
Bitcoin virtual currency is on verge of collapse
Senate probe accuses Swiss bank of helping rich Americans evade taxes
Lawmaker seeks to ban Bitcoin in U.S.
Tablet payments catch up with smartphones
Tesla partners with Panasonic to set up battery plant
Tesla teases with details of massive battery 'Gigafactory'
Solid new-home sales lift hopes for housing market
Twice Bitten: Rusty Ross of Cotopaxi has the misfortune
Science Proves Dogs Understand Your Voice
SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer
The Best and Worst Choices for Steak
Songs of Myself
first two paragraphs of “3”
I have heard what the talkers were talking, the talk of the beginning and the end,
There was never any more inception than there is now,
In Sacramento, Ca., Judge tosses out STOP arena lawsuit
Az governor vetoes controversial bill opposed by Super Bowl Committee
'Jaws' not high on Manziel
Stops along a good California road trip
Trying to Save Merle Haggard’s Old Home (a Boxcar)
Vintner Dario Sattui recovering after bike crash, neck surgery
Shug's Winery on Greatest of Pinot Noir
MillerCoors adopts first US beer nutritional labelling
More Uncorked and Women of the Vine to Host Second Annual Women of the Vine Grand Tasting Event in Napa, California
Direct to consumer market key for Oregon wine
Free Mobile Wine Program
Wine Prices by vintage
US/International Wine Events
Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page
This Day in History
1717 - Perhaps the greatest snow in New England history commenced on this date. During a ten day period, a series of four snowstorms dumped three feet of snow upon Boston, and the city was snowbound for two weeks. Up to six feet of snow was reported farther to the north, and drifts covered many one story homes.
1728 - Importation of rum in the colonies for this year amounted to 2,124,500 gallons of liquor. Drinking was extremely heavy. This printed doggerel gave one reason why people did not drink:
There’s but one Reason I can Think
Why People ever cease to drink,
Sobriety the Cause is not,
Nor Fear of being deam’d a Sot,
But if Liquor can’t be got.
1773-Christ Church in Alexandria, VA., was completed after six years of construction and a total cost of approximately $4070. George Washington purchased a pew for himself and his family at a cost of about $100. He also donated a handsome brass chandelier to the church.
1776 - A colonial force of North Carolina patriots resoundingly defeats a detachment of Scottish Loyalists at Moore’s Creek Bridge near Wilmington. The battle ended Royal Governor Josiah Martin's hopes of regaining control of the colony for the British crown. In addition, this first decisive Patriot victory of the Revolutionary War raised morale for Patriots throughout the colonies.
1782 - In England, the House of Commons votes against waging any further war in America. On 5 March, Parliament enacts legislation empowering the English Crown to negotiate peace with the United States.
1792 -a heavy snowfall at Charleston, South Carolina caused the Ashley River Bridge to collapse.
1807- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet and writer, born at Portland, ME. He is best remembered for his classic narrative poems, such as “The Song of Hiawatha”, “Paul Revere's Ride”, and “The Wreck of the Hesperus”. He was the most popular 19th century American poet and first to earn a living solely from writing verse. His best-known narrative poem, ‘The Song of Hiawatha” (1855) adapted its meter from the Finnish national epic “Kalevala”. Died at Cambridge, MA, Mar 24, 1882.
1827 - The first Mardi-Gras celebration is held in New Orleans.
1850-Charlotte Ray, first Black female lawyer, born New York City. She became the first woman to be accepted by the District of Columbia Bar Association. Ray opened a law office in Washington, D.C., but racial prejudices proved too strong, and she could not obtain enough legal business to maintain an active practice. In 1879 she returned to New York City unable to establish and maintain a successful law practice on her own. There she became active with the National Association of Colored Women and the National Women's Suffrage Association. She was employed by the Brooklyn School System. Around 1886 she married a man with the last name Fraim and moved to Woodside on Long Island. She died on January 4, 1911 from bronchitis at the age of 60. She was a person that stood up for what she believed in. She did much to help women black and white to gain equal rights to vote and to hold the same occupations at men..
1863 - Confederate raider William Quantrill and his bushwhackers attacked Hickman, Kentucky, shooting women and children.
1864-As chronicled in the book “Andersonville”, the first Union prisoners begin arriving at the Andersonville prison, even though it was still under construction in southern Georgia. Andersonville became synonymous with death as nearly a quarter of its inmates died in captivity. Henry Wirz, commandant at Andersonville, was executed after the war for the brutality and mistreatment committed under his command. Originally designed for 10,000 men, it soon housed over 33,000 in quite deplorable conditions. The creek banks eroded, creating a swamp, which became part of the compound. Food was scarce, and guards were encouraged to “lessen the population” and were quite brutal and violent to the prisoners.
List of Union soldiers who died and their cause of death:
1869-American pathologist Alice Hamilton was born at New York, NY. She contributed to the workmen's compensation laws by reporting on the dangers to workers of industrial toxic substances. She taught at Harvard Medical School from 1919 until 1935. Hamilton died Sept 22, 1970, at Hadlyme, CT.
1869 --John Willis Menard spoke to Congress in defense of his claim to a contested seat representing Louisiana's Second Congressional District, thus becoming the first black to speak to Congress. Congress decided against his claim, as well as the claim of the other contestant. Congressman James A. Garfield said "it was too early to admit a Negro to the U.S. Congress." So, Menard was actually the first black elected to Congress, in 1868, but he was not permitted to serve his term. He was reportedly paid by Congress a monthly salary for the term of office he was to fulfill. He was not only an active civil rights advocate, but a published poet.
1872- Charlotte Ray, first Black woman lawyer, graduated Harvard University. She was employed by the Brooklyn School System. Around 1886, she married a man with the last name Fraim and moved to Woodside on Long Island. She died on January 4, 1911 from bronchitis at the age of 60. She was a person who stood up for what she believed in. She did much to help women, black and white, to gain equal rights to vote and to hold the same occupations at men
1879-Sugar substitute Saccharine was discovered by Constantine Fahlberg, who was working under the direction of Professor Ira Remsen at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. Fahlberg described the discovery in an article entitle “ On the Liquid Touensulphochloride,” which he submitted to the American Chemical Journal on this day. Saccharine is an edible substance 550 times sweeter than table sugar, but not absorbed by the body.
1883- Oscar Hammerstein of New York City, grandfather of the famous composer, received a patent for the first practical cigar-rolling machine.
1890-cornet player Freddie Keppard born New Orleans, LA. Died 1933
1891- David Sarnoff, broadcasting pioneer, is born. Russian-born Sarnoff moved to New York at age nine, and at seventeen, he took a job as a telegraph messenger boy. He used his first paycheck to buy a telegraph and taught himself Morse code. Marconi's Wireless Telegraph Company hired him as a telegraph operator. In 1912, Sarnoff was the first telegraph operator to pick up the Titanic's distress call; he remained at his post for seventy-two hours, monitoring the call and passing on information. Sarnoff rose rapidly through the ranks of the company. He proposed that Marconi market a "radio music box" and, in 1921, became general manager of RCA. Sarnoff also set up the NBC radio network and established the first U.S. television service in 1939. http://www.stfrancis.edu/ba/ghkickul/stuwebs/bbios/biograph/sarnoff.htm
1897- Marian Anderson born at Philadelphia (some sources say in 1899 or 1902). Anderson's talent was evident at an early age. Her career stonewalled by the prejudice she encountered in the US, she moved to Europe where the magnificence of her voice and her versatility as a performer began to establish her as one of the world's finest contraltos. Preventing Anderson's performance at Washington's Constitution Hall in 1939 on the basis of her color, the Daughters of the American Revolution secured for her the publicity that would lay the foundation for her success in the States. Her performance was rescheduled, and on Apr 9 (Easter Sunday) 75,000 people showed up to hear her sing from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and the performance was simultaneously broadcast by radio. In 1957, Anderson became the first African-American to perform with the New York Metropolitan Opera. The following year, President Eisenhower named her a delegate to the United Nations. She performed at President Kennedy's inauguration and in 1963 received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Some historians cite the Lincoln Memorial performance as the first strategic victory of the modern civil rights movement. Anderson died April 8, 1993, at Portland, Oregon.http://www.afrovoices.com/anderson.html
1900 -a massive snowstorm set records from Kansas to New York. 18.7 inches of snow was measured at Topeka, Kansas in 24 hours -- the city's greatest 24 hour snowfall on record. 17.5 inches fell at Springfield, Illinois, 43 inches at Rochester, New York, 60 inches in the Adirondacks, and 31 inches at Northfield, Vermont.
1902 – Birthday of John (Ernst) Steinbeck, one of American’s best writers: “The Grapes of Wrath”, “Cannery Row”, he was known also for his many short stories and “Travels with Charlie,” which generated several television programs. Died Dec 20, 1968. He lived a few blocks away from where I live now, and in the 1940’s and 1950’s wrote many of his books here.
1902- Gene Sarazen, golfer, born Eugenio Saraceni at Harrison, NY. Sarazen was one of the game's greatest players and in his later years one of its greatest goodwill ambassadors. The inventor of the sand wedge, Sarazen was also the first to win the modern grand slam (the Masters, US Open, British Open and PGA), although not in the same year. During the 1935 Masters, he hit one of golf's most famous shots, a four-wood for a double eagle on the par-5 fifteenth hole of the final round. The shot enabled him to tie Craig Wood for the lead and defeat him in a playoff. Sarazen's last shot was the traditional ceremonial tee shot to open the 1999 Masters. Died at Marco Island, FL, May 13, 1999.
1904- James Ferrell, American author, novelist and short story writer, best known for his Studs Lonigan trilogy. Born at Chicago, IL, he died at New York, NY, Aug 22, 1979.
1907- Birthday of singer Mildred Bailey, Tekoa, WA. Tagged Mr. and Mrs. Swing she led a band with her husband Red Norvo, did solo vocals, and had her own radio show.
1909-Guitarist Harrison Verrett born Napoleonville, LA
1909 Ben Webster Birthday
1912- Hilton Lee Smith, baseball player, born at Giddings, TX. Smith was a dominant pitcher in the Negro Leagues. He possessed a superb curve ball and was often considered the equal or better of Satchel Page. Died at Kansas City, MO, Nov 18, 1983.
1913 – American playwright, author, screenwriter, Irwin Shaw, born Irwin Gilbert Shamforoff in The Bronx. He was best known for his book “The Young Lions.” Died, 1984
1923- Guitarist Chuck Wayne born New York City.
1923- Tenor sax player Dexter Gordon, Los Angeles, CA (saw him play many times, often at the jazz house in Half Moon Bay --I believe.)
Died April 26, 1996
1926- First jazz concert held at Chicago’s Coliseum, sponsored by Okey Records.
1928-guitarist Roy Montrell born New Orleans, LA.
1929- The first movie by a major company for an African-American audience was shown this day at the Gaiety Theatre, New York City. It was the William Fox Movietone feature “Heats in Dixie”, a musical comedy drama of the South featuring 200 entertainers. It was a Paul Sloane production, written and directed by Eugene Walter, with story dialogue by Walter Weems. The featured actor was Stephen “Stepin” Fetchit. The entire cast, with one exception, was African-American.
1930--Birthday of actress Joanne Woodward. Won Academy award for Best Actress, “The Three Faces of Eve” (1957) and nominated for several others. Won several Emmys for her TV work. Perhaps most remembered as long time wife of Paul Newman (Newman's Own).
1932--Birthday of actress Elizabeth Taylor. A complex and headline-grabbing private life and her violet eyes in an exquisite face, often eclipse the fact that she won two Academy Awards for Best Actress: “Butterfield 8” (1960) and “Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf” (1966). She had been nominated three other times. Helped form pioneer AIDS-fighting organization Am-Far and was a cosmetic executive. Her mother was actress Sara Sothern. She died in Los Angeles, Ca., March 23, 2011.
1934- Consumer advocate Ralph Nader born Winsted, Connecticut. His claim to fame was his 1965 book, “Unsafe at Any Speed: The Designed-In Dangers of the American Automobile.” Today he is an active political candidate for change.
1935 - The 7th Academy Awards ceremony was held at the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel for the films of 1934. Actor/writer Irvin S. Cobb hosted the big show. "It Happened One Night" swept the awards, capturing Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director (Frank Capra), Best Actor (Clark Gable) and Best Actress (Claudette Colbert). A miniature version of Oscar was presented to child star, Shirley Temple “...in grateful recognition of her outstanding contribution to screen entertainment during the year 1934.”
1945---WATSON, WILSON DOUGLAS Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division. Place and date: Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 26 and 27 February 1945. Entered service at: Arkansas. Born: 18 February 1921, Tuscumbia, Ala. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as automatic rifleman serving with the 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 26 and 27 February 1945. With his squad abruptly halted by intense fire from enemy fortifications in the high rocky ridges and crags commanding the line of advance, Pvt. Watson boldly rushed 1 pillbox and fired into the embrasure with his weapon, keeping the enemy pinned down single-handedly until he was in a position to hurl in a grenade, and then running to the rear of the emplacement to destroy the retreating Japanese and enable his platoon to take its objective. Again pinned down at the foot of a small hill, he dauntlessly scaled the jagged incline under fierce mortar and machinegun barrages and, with his assistant BAR man, charged the crest of the hill, firing from his hip. Fighting furiously against Japanese troops attacking with grenades and knee mortars from the reverse slope, he stood fearlessly erect in his exposed position to cover the hostile entrenchments and held the hill under savage fire for 15 minutes, killing 60 Japanese before his ammunition was exhausted and his platoon was able to join him. His courageous initiative and valiant fighting spirit against devastating odds were directly responsible for the continued advance of his platoon, and his inspiring leadership throughout this bitterly fought action reflects the highest credit upon Pvt. Watson and the U.S. Naval Service.
Let It Snow - Vaughn Monroe
Symphony - The Freddy Martin Orchestra (vocal: Clyde Rogers)
I Can’t Begin to Tell You - Bing Crosby with the Carmen Cavallaro Orchestra
Guitar Polka - Al Dexter
1946 - The fourth of the “Road” films, "Road to Utopia", starring Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour and Robert Benchley, opened in New York City. Bing and Bob wound up in Alaska posing as escaped killers in order to locate a lost gold mine. Tunes from the flick: "Put It There, Pal", "Welcome to My Dreams", "Would You?", "Personality", "Sunday, Monday, or Always", "Goodtime Charlie" and "It’s Anybody’s Spring”.
1948-The Jeep was to be made by Bantam Motor Company for the US Army, who owed the patent rights, but were sued by Willys-Overland for the right of production. Willis-Overland wound up producing the Army vehicle that would come to be known as the Jeep (they actually subbed it out to Ford, who built the most as Willy could not keep up with the demand), but for the record, the patent was owned by the Bantam Motor Company.
1950- The twenty-second amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, limiting the presidential term of office to two terms.
1951- singer/politician Lee Atwater born Atlanta, GA
Oh! My Pa-Pa - Eddie Fisher
Make Love to Me! - Jo Stafford
Cross Over the Bridge - Patti Page
Wake Up, Irene - Hank Thompson
1954- Doris Day's "Secret Love" hits #1
1955- For the first time, the 45 rpm vinyl single begins outselling the previous industry standard 78 rpm record.
1955- Neal Schon, vocalist and guitarist with the hard-pop band Journey, was born in San Mateo, California. The group's fourth LP, "Infinity," sold a million copies in 1978. Three years later, "Escape" became Journey's first number-one LP. A single from it, "Open Arms," hit number two on the Billboard chart. Journey is said to be the first rock band to inspire a video game - "Journey - Escape" was in the arcades in late 1982.
1956- Elvis Presley's releases "Heartbreak Hotel"
1956- Little Richard's first Number One R&B hit, "Slippin' and Slidin'," backed with "Long Tall Sally," is released on Specialty.
1960-- Smokey Robinson and the Miracles make their first ever TV appearance, singing "Shop Around" on ABC's American Bandstand.
1961--Five months after topping the US charts with "The Twist", Chubby Checker does it again with "Pony Time".
1962- Gene Chandler's "Duke of Earl" reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The record, released only ten days after Chandler signed with Vee-Jay records in Chicago, remained in the top spot for three weeks.
Duke of Earl - Gene Chandler
The Wanderer - Dion
Norman - Sue Thompson
Walk on By - Leroy Van Dyke
1963 - The New York Yankees' Mickey Mantle signed a baseball contract worth $100,000, a far cry from his 1949 contract which Mantle had signed for $1,100. In April of 1953, Mantle was said to have hit the longest home run. Batting left-handed in Griffith Stadium, in Washington, DC, Mantle hit a long home run over the 460-foot sign, out of the stadium, with the ball flying an estimated 565 feet. In 1962, Mantle appeared in the movie "That Touch of Mink". In 1995, Mickey Mantle died in Dallas, Texas.
1966 -Ladies Figure Skating Championship in Davos won by Peggy Fleming of US
1967-San Francisco Police raided two Digger houses: 848 Clayton and 1775 Haight. The next day, a demonstration takes place at Park Station protesting the raids and police harassment, especially directed toward Patrolman Arthur Gerrans. Lt. John Curran estimated that 40 people stayed at each apartment on a nightly basis.
1969 - A record snowstorm in Maine came to an end. Two to four feet of snow buried southern and central Maine, with a state record of 57 inches reported at West Forks. Drifts covered many single story homes, and the weight of the snow collapsed many roofs. Two to four feet of snow also buried northeastern Vermont and northeastern Massachusetts. In New Hampshire, Mount Washington reported 97.8 inches of snow, a record storm total for New England.
Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)/Everybody is a Star - Sly & The Family Stone
Hey There Lonely Girl - Eddie Holman
Bridge Over Troubled Water - Simon & Garfunkel
It’s Just a Matter of Time - Sonny James
1970 - Simon and Garfunkel received a gold record for the single, "Bridge Over Troubled Water". The duo was so impressed with their deserved achievement that they played the gold disc on their stereo. But they heard Mitch Miller’s "Bridge on the River Kwai" instead, and on the same Columbia label they recorded for! Amazing but weird, huh?
1971--Five months after her death, Janis Joplin began a nine-week stay at the top of the Billboard Hot 200 album chart with "Pearl".
1972 -unseasonably mild weather prevailed throughout the central US. Temperatures soared to 83 degrees in Kansas City, Missouri, setting an all-time high record for the month of February.
1973 - Baseball star Dick ‘Don’t Call Me Richie’ Allen signed a three-year pact with the Chicago White Sox for a reported $675,000 after leaving the Philadelphia Phillies.
1973- 200 members of the American Indian Movement, led by Russell Means and Dennis Banks, occupied Wounded Knee, SD, a town on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Their demands included a review of treaties between the federal government and indigenous peoples, a Senate investigation into the treatment of Native Americans, and free elections of tribal leaders. The occupation ended on May 8 when the group surrendered to federal marshals. Gunfights during the siege killed one marshal and two protesters. Wounded Knee was the site of a massacre in December, 1890 when Army troops machine-gunned 200 Sioux men, women, and children.
1977- Center Stan Mikita of the Chicago Blackhawks, scored the 500th goal of his career in Chicago’s 4-3 loss to the Vancouver Canucks. Mikita finished his career with 541 goals and entered the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983.
Stayin’ Alive - Bee Gees
(Love Is) Thicker Than Water - Andy Gibb
Just the Way You Are - Billy Joel
Don’t Break the Heart that Loves You - Margo Smith.
1980- The 22nd Annual Grammy Award winners for 1979 are announced. The Doobie Brothers' "What a Fool Believes" wins both Record and Song of the Year. Billy Joel's "52nd Street" wins both Album of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
1981-Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder recorded "Ebony and Ivory", which will top both the Billboard Pop chart and the Adult Contemporary chart during a 15 week run.
1982 -- Earl “Square Eyes” Anthony becomes first pro bowler to win more than $1 million. Anthony, voted "Bowler of the Millennium" later falls down stairs in his retirement and dies August 14, 2001 as a result.
1984 -a severe winter storm, which began on the 26th, spread blizzard conditions across Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. 24 inches of snow fell in the Vichy-Rolla area in Missouri. 22 inches was reported in southern Illinois. Winds frequently gusted to 40 and 50 mph. Interstate 65, which connects Indianapolis with Chicago, was impassable for several days due to extensive drifting of the snow. Thunderstorms were reported which added to the heavy snow amounts.
1986- Van Halen released "Why Can't This Be Love," their first single since Sammy Hagar replaced David Lee Roth as lead singer. It would rise to number three on the Billboard chart.
How Will I Know - Whitney Houston
Kyrie - Mr. Mister
Sara - Starship
There’s No Stopping Your Heart - Marie Osmond
1987-Former White House Chief of Staff Donald Regan resigns after the Tower Commission report gives him responsibility for the Iran-Contra affair to trade guns for hostages with money going to the Nicaraguan Contras.
1988- Debi Thomas, figure skater, becomes first Black American to win a medal at the Winter Olympics. After her Olympic career, she toured for several years then returned to school. Thomas completed her education to become a physician, and today is a practicing orthopedic surgeonhttp://womenshistory.about.com/library/bio/blbio_debi_thomas.htm
1988--George Michael reaches number one in the US for the second time in his solo career with "Father Figure". He would go on to have a total of six after scoring three chart toppers with Andrew Ridgeley in Wham!
1991- Allied troops entered Kuwait City, Kuwait, four days after launching a ground offensive. President George H. W. Bush declared Kuwait to be liberated and ceased all offensive military operations in the Gulf War. The end of military operations came at 9pm, EST, 100 hours after the beginning of the land attack. At 9 p.m. (EST), U.S. President Bush said on live television, “Kuwait is liberated. Iraq’s army is defeated. I am pleased to announce that at midnight tonight, exactly 100 hours since ground operations began and six weeks since the start of Operation Desert Storm, all United States and coalition forces will suspend offensive combat operations”. Feb 26 is commemorated as Liberation Day in Kuwait.
1991- James Brown was paroled in Columbia, South Carolina after serving 15 months of a six-year-term for leading police on a chase through South Carolina and Georgia. He performed at the Oakland Coliseum at age 71 and got rave reviews from all the newspapers.
1992 -Tiger Woods, 16, becomes youngest PGA golfer in 35 years.
1993--Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You" replaces Boyz II Men's 1992 hit "End Of The Road" as the longest running Billboard chart topper when it stays #1 for its 14th consecutive week.
1995- Canadian singer Celine Dion made British chart history by becoming the first artist in more than 30 years to have both the number-one album and single for five straight weeks. Dion topped the singles chart with "Think Twice" and the album chart with "The Color of My Love." The last time that happened for five consecutive weeks was in 1964 with "I Feel Fine" and "Beatles for Sale."
2006—African Burial Ground National Monument Established by President George W. Bush, who signed a proclamation declaring a seven-acre plot at the corners of Duane and Elk Streets in Lower Manhattan, New York, to be a national monument. From the 1609s to the 1790s, this land served as a cemetery for both free and enslaved Africans and is believed to be the resting place of more than 15,000 people.
2011--Academy Awards held at Kodak Theatre. Best Picture, "The King's Speech;" Best Animated Film, "Toy Story 3;" Best Actor in a Leading Role, Colin Firth, "The King's Speech;" Best Actress in a Leading Role, Natalie Portman,” Black Swan; Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Christian Bale,” The Fighter;" Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Melissa Leo, "The Fighter; Best Director, Tom Hooper, "The King's Speech;” Best Writer, Original Screenplay, David Seidler, "The King's Speech;" Adapted Screenplay, Aaron Sorkin, "The Social Network;" Cinematography, Wally Pfister, "Inception;" Music, "We Belong Together" from Toy Story 3: Music and Lyric by Randy Newman.
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