Engines not included

Business Jet Traveler » February 2009
Sunday, February 1, 2009 - 4:00am
With a top speed of more than 17,000 miles per hour, NASA's space shuttles make even the fastest business jets seem slow by comparison-and soon you'll be able to buy one. Better hang onto your airplane, though: When NASA sells its three remaining shuttles-Discovery, Atlantis and Endeavour-following their planned 2010 retirement, the craft will be for display purposes only.

While one of the famous orbiters is destined for the Smithsonian, the space agency anticipates that the price for the other two will be at least $42 million apiece, taking into consideration cleaning, decontaminating and preparing the craft for display. Since NASA will not disassemble the shuttles for transport, that estimate also includes a $6 million fee to ferry the craft to the nearest major airport on the back of a modified Boeing 747. The price does not include the shuttles' three main engines, which NASA expects will go for up to $800,000 each, plus shipping. And don't expect to park your shuttle outdoors, if you get one. The space agency will consider only buyers- presumably museums and other institutions- with indoor, climate-controlled display areas.
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““CEOs go to their vacation homes just after companies report favorable news, and CEOs return to headquarters right before subsequent news is released. More good news is released when CEOs are back at work, and CEOs appear not to leave headquarters at all if a firm has adverse news to disclose. When CEOs are away from the office, stock prices behave quietly with sharply lower volatility. Volatility increases immediately when CEOs return to work.” —David Yermack, a New York University finance professor, whose recently released study shows a correlation between when CEOs take their private jets on vacation and movements in their companies’ stock price ”

-David Yermack