It's finally happened. After months of reading the tea leaves, we have the first clear indication that all is not entirely well in the land of Big Oil in the form of the merger between Halliburton and Baker Hughes. There are lots of stories right now about the Houston-based companies -- the second ... More >>
There was a time, back in the 80's, where if you asked any of the young WWE (back then, called the WWF) fans how much would they pay to be able to watch essentially any relevant moment in WWE history any time they wanted to from any computer or smart phone, the answer would have involved multiple ze ... More >>
After reading your comments and tallying your votes for the most underrated greasy spoons in Houston, I've come to a conclusion: We don't have enough greasy spoons here. There are several big ones that get all the credit and a few lesser-known ones with small but devoted contingents of fans. So he ... More >>
Whatever else you might want to say about the tea party folks -- both the elected representatives and their citizen-supporters -- you cannot say that they are in hock to Wall Street the same way the establishment GOP and (much of) the Democrats are. (Including, yes, President Obama. It's true). If ... More >>
If you've been paying any attention at all since the Great Recession of 2008, you've probably heard of high-frequency trading. It's essentially this: people who have their PhD's in computer science go work for firms and set up systems that allow them to know--even if it's just milliseconds--how a st ... More >>
According to a report from the Houston Association of Realtors, the city of Houston had its biggest single month of home sales ever in July. This continues the housing boom of 2013 that has seen dramatic increases in the number of homes sold and the sharp rise in home prices. All of this has been fu ... More >>
We never expected to find a home as quickly as we did. When my fiancée and I started looking, we assumed we would casually search until after our wedding in October, then get serious. But as we watched interest rates slowly begin to tick upward, we decided to speed up the process. Even then, we ass ... More >>
Uwe Boll's solution to the crash? Bloodshed.
A local radio host who splits his time between spouting right-wing dogma and offering investment advice has been hit with a cease-and-desist order from the Securities and Exchange Commission. George R. Jaresky, Jr. hosts a show on KTEK-AM 1100 (Official motto: "Yes, We Exist") and is semi-syndicate ... More >>
American banks are on a massive crime spree. Obama and Romney hope you won’t notice.
America's for-profit colleges offer education only a con man (or a congressman) could love.
The winemakers behind Uvaggio Vermentino from Lodi have a theory. "If we grow the right grape in the right place," they write on their website, "we can manage to get by with our respective degrees in psychology and geography. (If one of us gets lost then other can figure out why.) However, when you ... More >>
Wall Street and Washington conspire to destablize the U.S. economy, one barrel of oil at a time.
"I think we are a contender, so that's no surprise to me. I guess they got tired of losing money out there, putting our over-and-under too low, so they're getting more realistic." -- Houston Texans owner Bob McNair trash-talking the oddsmakers when asked about the Texans' status as favorites in the ... More >>
Here's a scoop: Facebook is having an IPO today. This under-the-radar stock sale will make billions for investors. Although everyone is keeping things on the down-low, the IPO means -- I'm guessing here, Wall Street is really not my forte -- that you can buy a share of Facebook stock, currently tra ... More >>
Bill Moyers believes that the sun-baked scattered bones of Wall Street's carcass are being picked clean by "animal spirits" -- namely, hyenas, and that these scavengers believe that they are justified, indeed morally sanctioned, in behaving as such, and that nobody in government is willing or able t ... More >>
See lots more pics of the protest in our slideshow. Joining a movement of protests across the country, several hundred Houstonians gathered at Market Square Park this morning to march to Hermann Square in front of City Hall, which they plan to occupy indefinitely in solidarity with the Occupy Wall ... More >>
In the fantasy I Don't Know How She Does It, working moms can have it all.
The Ponzi-er gets Ponzied. And pwned.You are so freaking clever and smart that you have scammed $45 million out of 125 people in a Ponzi scheme. So when someone offers you a risk-free return of 30-40 percent on foreign exchange markets with a personal guarantee you will at least get your mone ... More >>
Settlement helps, a little.Financial giant JPMorgan has agreed to pay $228 million to settle charges that it manipulated deals involving the government bond market, and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott says the state's portion of it will be about $3.5 million. The money will go to Texas mu ... More >>
Photo courtesy GHCVBA global city....with a disappointing football teamForeign Policy magazine, desperate to hike pageviews now that their "Hottest Women of Diplomacy" issue is a thing of the past (or of our imagination) has ranked the 65 "Global Cities" of the world.The magazine looked at 65 cit ... More >>
Stone's sequel lets the bad guys off easy.
Au revoir, limitless foreign-exchange studentsThe High School for the Performing and Visual Arts -- a much-esteemed program in the Houston ISD that students all over the district apply for and compete to get into -- this year has five foreign exchange students.That means, HISD Chief Academic Offi ... More >>
Time to replant the money treeLet your minister or rabbi or guru give you spiritual advice, but leave the financial dealings to your broker or accountant. The case of Jeremiah Yancy, aka Jeremiah Glaub, is a perfect example. While the pastor of a church in Idaho, Yancy managed to coax 64 individ ... More >>
You can't just go shooting for some food and find bubbling crude anymoreOther than desperation, is there much to recommend Canadian tar sands as a fuel source?Not according to Matthew Tejada of Air Alliance Houston. During a talk at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church last night, he described th ... More >>
Wild mushroom and walnut tortellini at D'Amico's Italian Market Cafe
While Hair Balls is fearful of ever-expanding government power and its attendant death panels and Wall Street takeovers, there is one government institution we absolutely love: libraries. We're total whores for literacy and recreational/ educational reading. Which is why we're stoked for the ... More >>
If you're reading this, you're either on the Internet, or else you've mastered multi-dimensional thought-projection processes that would make Michio Kaku cry like a little girl. We'll assume the former, and just in case you don't already know, the Internet has decided that the word "failure" is too ... More >>
We Americans are a generous people. In the days after the devastating Haitian earthquake, we whipped out our credit cards and donated millions to relieve that stricken, jinxed nation.But until Thursday, when the Huffington Post got wind of the practices, the major credit companies (including ... More >>
Is Houston about to become America's coffee capital?
A couple of researchers at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy have released a study that gets close to proving that speculators caused oil prices to shoot up in 2008. This theory is nothing new, but the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the agency that regulates U.S. futu ... More >>
When I suggested to a friend and fellow food blogger (Food in Houston) that we eat lunch in the Heights -- his old stomping grounds -- he sent me an impressively detailed list of candidate restaurants. The usuals were there -- Bedford, Shade, Dry Creek Cafe. All worthy selections. But it was the las ... More >>
Financial crisis? What financial crisis?Not in Texas, apparently. And not for bankers.Bankers descended on Austin this week for Bank Legislation Day, which doesn't sound as fun as the Bank Holidays they have in England.The Texas bankers, though, want the world to know that they are nothing like thos ... More >>
The Water Wall. Scene of countless wedding proposals and photos. Houston landmark. Who knew that up until recently, the majority of the Wall was owned by a group of Kuwaiti investors? Or, as John Breeding, the president of Uptown Houston District, tells Hair Balls, "Literally, the Kuwaiti government ... More >>
The ever-cheerful blogger Lou Minatti, by way of warning everyone about Houston's coming fiscal apocalypse, has unearthed a 1986 Time article largely comparing booming Massachusetts and oil-bust Texas.Houston plays a part: Houston is the big city hardest hit. The town once giddily expansive on oil m ... More >>
Airlines across the plant added almost 2,100 new routes last year. Which new route was the single most popular? It was right here in Houston. The new Hobby to Big Spring route drew tens of thousands of travelers, which is especially strange because it uses a one-prop plane. Actually, the most pop ... More >>
On the one hand, the timing couldn’t be better for The Smart Cookies’ Guide to Making More Dough: How Five Young Women Got Smart, Formed a Money Group, and Took Control of Their Finances, which came out this week. Don’t we all want to be smart about money, now more than ever? On the other han ... More >>
Everyone here is dealing with Ike, but just to give you something else to worry about as you wait on line for ice -- Wall Street had a disaster of its own over the weekend. Big companies went bankrupt, meetings were held, etc. etc. As Slate put it in its summary of today's papers: The NYT says Su ... More >>
Local artists create a different type of seasonal decoration
Here's your chance to get rich quick -- or lose your shirt, in which case, GlobalTec disavows all responsibility for, well, anything
How Enron's high temptress turned massive projects into a $2 billion wet dream for the company -- and an estimated $100 million profit for herself
Enron used political ties to rid itself of regulators. But in the end, its supposed free-market trailblazing only burned investors.
Moody hooks a $75 million verdict against a fish farm and a law firm
Thousands of inmates rely annually on a capricious parole board for their freedom. Most, like George Dismukes, return to their cells without ever knowing why they were denied.
A Bible-quoting con man finds easy pickings among those looking for a miracle or a windfall
Zonagen Inc. took its name from Bonnie Dunbar's groundbreaking research into contraceptive vaccines. Then, when she wasn't looking, the company took her research.
At the Triple A, the food lives up to the rating in the name
Wendy Gramm's all-American success story is a centerpiece of her husband's fledgling presidential bid. But there's more to the story than what's being packaged and sold by the Phil Gramm campaign.