close this bookVolume 8: No. 2.2
View the documentEconomic news
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View the documentApplied jobs (in our CAJ 8.02 digest this week)
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Corporations may be cutting costs, but 2/3 of 250 surveyed senior information technology managers are planning to increase their IT budgets this year (by an average of 18%). Y2K conversions are the most urgent priority, followed by PC purchases and upgrading to Windows NT 5.0. [IW, 05Jan98. EduP.]

The Securities and Exchange Commission will be requiring companies in certain industries to disclose how they are addressing Year 2000 problems. Year 2000 issues are already a part of any bank examination by the Fed. [Reuters, 11Dec97. Bill Park.]

Technology lawyer Barry D. Weiss says that many lawyers are being drawn to information technology because of the Year 2000 opportunity. [NY Times, 05Jan98. EduP.]

Californians started more than 52K new businesses in 1997, a record for the decade. New starts in the Bay Area are up 8.5% over 1996. [CDB Infotek. SJM, 27Dec97, 1C.]

There's a new two-volume manual about raising capital over the Internet through a Direct Public Offering (DPO). "Self-directed IPO, Raising Capital with SCOR" describes the SEC's Small Corporate Offering Registration program and using the Internet to locate investors. Using SCOR, companies can raise up to $1M in equity capital annually by selling stock, options, warrants, rights, notes, or other debt securities. The SCOR Form U-7 has 50 questions (uniform in all states) and serves as the primary registration document for each state in which securities will be sold. Companies must also file Form D with the SEC. Stock sold under a SCOR can be freely traded in the secondary market. Marketing is the chief difficulty, which is why DataMerge, Inc. (Denver) has put together a volume about the process and another about marketing techniques. $249 each, 376 pages total; (800) 580-1188. . [Spencer Kluesner, 07Jan98.]

DataMerge also maintains the VentureTrack 2000 venture capital site, including tips on approaching specific venture companies. The site includes an 8-page profile of the leading software VC company, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners. . See also for a discussion of VC-targeted business plans. [Spencer Kluesner, 24Dec97.]

(DataMerge was founded in 1989 by Spencer Kluesner , a former securities advisor, and now has 26 employees. Other products include Financing Sources Databank, VentureTrack 2000 CD-ROM Infobase, Venture Capital Insights, Commercial Mortgage Insights, and LoanSource 2000. , 303-757-6298.)

If you plan to invest in high-tech stocks, get Michael Murphy's "Every Investor's Guide to High-Tech Stocks & Mutual Funds" (Broadway Books, $27.50). It includes chapters on semiconductors, production equipment, computers, software, communications, and medical technology, each with sections on industry customers, growth, profit, and effects of the Internet. Murphy also publishes the California Technology Stock Letter, from Half Moon Bay. [Adam Lashinsky, SJM, 05Jan98, 1E.]

Russia had the world's hottest stock market for the second year in a row, up about 196%. Hungary is also doing very well, as are Turkey and Panama. [SJM, 27Dec97, 1C.]

Russia has a new ruble, worth 1,000 of the old ones (and one sixth of a US dollar). Inflation is only 11% at present. Introduction of the new currency is going smoothly, as opposed to a botched currency revision in 1991 when "We wanted to make things better, but they turned out as usual." [SJM, 06Jan98, 2C.]