Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Glad to hear it's working out for someone

Houston's economy is thriving thanks to Katrina [emphasis added]
HOUSTON, Sept. 5 - Perhaps no city in the United States is in a better spot than Houston to turn Katrina's tragedy into opportunity. And businesses here are already scrambling to profit in the hurricane's aftermath.

Oil services companies based here are racing to carry out repairs to damaged offshore platforms in the Gulf of Mexico; the promise of plenty of work to do sent shares in two large companies, Halliburton and Baker Hughes, soaring to 52-week highs last week. The Port of Houston is preparing for an increase in traffic as shippers divert cargoes away from the damaged ports of Pascagoula, Miss., and New Orleans.

Owners of office space here are witnessing a surge in leasing as New Orleans companies, including that city's oldest bank, scramble to set up new headquarters in Houston, helping to shore up its sagging property market. With brio that might make an ambulance-chaser proud, one company, National Realty Investments, is offering special financing deals "for hurricane survivors only," with no down payments and discounted closing costs.

So, are they going to give priority of job training & placement in these relocated companies to folks displaced by Katrina and/or require at least a percentage of the profits to be utilized in rebuilding parts of the gulf coast decimated by the Hurricane? Some people and companies may, but others may well take the Babs approach, which is sort of scary.

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