We’re In Trouble

Our economy is definitely in recession. How do I now?

Right before the last recession, I noticed that a lot of companies were changing their names for now apparent reason. Phillip Morris became Altria, Anderson Consulting became Accenture, etc. When American companies have nothing better to do with their money and lawyers than change names, we’re about to hit an economic downturn.

I’ve noticed recently a lot of businesses relocating for no apparent reason. When American companies have nothing better do to with their money and lawyers than change locations, we’re about to hit an economic downturn.

2 thoughts on “We’re In Trouble”

  1. To be fair, Andersen Consulting had the change forced on them, as they had long since ceased to be a part of Arthur Andersen in any meaningful way, and the erstwhile parent company thought the similarity in names caused confusion. PM changed its name because the company “wished to emphasize that its business consists of more than tobacco.” In other words, the brand had become tainted, and they wanted to limit the damage.

    There is another name change you didn’t mention; in 2002 Arthur Andersen for all practical purposes changed its name to Protiviti (technically they laid everybody off, and they were all subsequently hired by the newly-created Protiviti). Can you guess why?

    Anyhow, the point is that these things may appear random from the outside, but they often have an internal logic that is only apparent if you know all of the facts surrounding the decision. Many of these relocations may have similar motivations.

  2. Agreed. I was being a bit facetious. But there *did* seem to be a period of time when *everyone* was changing their name for no readily apparent reason. At the time, I thought this meant the economy was going to turn down. So, based on the logic hat popular economist use, that must mean I discovered something, right? Post hoc propter hoc and all that.

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