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Steepest earnings decline in S & P's 500 since 1936; Gap between U.S. and foreign CEO pay narrows; Drop in casino earnings first in a decade; Accounting profession adds 3,000 jobs a month; Selling dirt from old Yankee Stadium

Steepest earnings decline in S & P's 500 since 1936Over the past 20 months, earnings at the companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index have fallen 90 percent, the steepest decline since records were first kept, in 1936. Barron’s

Gap between U.S. and foreign CEO pay narrowsIn 1997, the pay of U.S. CEOs was twice that of CEOs in other countries, according to compensation consultant Towers Perrin. Today that gap has narrowed, with U.S. CEOs earning only a third more than their overseas counterparts.Marketwatch.comDrop in casino earnings first in a decadeConsumers spent $1.6 billion less in casinos in 2008 than the $34.1 billion they dropped in 2007, the first decline in at least a decade. In addition to the recession, smoking bans in Colorado and Illinois reduced the casinos’ take in those states.BusinessWeek

Accounting profession adds 3,000 jobs a monthOver the past six months, while the U.S. economy was shedding more than 500,000 jobs a month, the accounting profession was adding 3,000 jobs a month. Amid heightened scrutiny of companies’ financial books, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the number of jobs for accountants and auditors will increase 18 percent between now and 2016. Forbes

Selling dirt from old Yankee Stadium Now that they’ve moved into a new stadium, the New York Yankees are charging $80 for a tablespoon of the dirt from the old Yankee Stadium. The same dirt costs the Yankees about 4 cents a pound. A plan to sell air from the old stadium’s locker room didn’t pan out.Bloomberg.com

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