Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tuesday roundup (04-30-13)

Euro-Area Unemployment Increases to Record 12.1% Amid Recession (Bloomberg) Eurozone unemployment hits new high: Eurostat data released as Spain's economy shrinks for seventh consecutive quarter and Slovenia suffers ratings downgrade (The Guardian)

Eurozone inflation falls to new low (The Irish Independent)

Eurozone risks Japan-style trap as deflation grinds closer: The eurozone is one shock away from a Japan-style deflation crisis after a key measure of prices fell to the lowest since the launch of the single currency. (The Telegraph)

Euro zone inflation fall, record jobless point to ECB rate cut (Reuters) ECB Rate Cut Just Became Even More Likely (CNBC) Euro inflation eases, unemployment at new record - economy (EuroNews)

At $72.8 Trillion, Presenting The Bank With The Biggest Derivative Exposure In The World [= Deutsche Bank] (ZeroHedge blog)

Germany accuses France of being 'Europe's biggest problem child': A scathing German assessment of France's economic weakness – in which the country is labelled "Europe's biggest problem child" – has reopened divisions between Europe's two biggest powers. (The Telegraph) Germany will think twice before saving France next time (The Telegraph blogs) Fran├žois Hollande's vision of an anti-austerity Europe was just a dream: Italian and German politics have stymied French socialists' plans for a shift in the balance of European power (The Guardian)

Italy PM urges EU to drop austerity drive: Enrico Letta, visiting Germany, says initiatives fostering growth should be prioritised over budgetary discipline. (Al Jazeera) Italy's Letta tells Merkel Europe needs more growth (Reuters) Criticise it all you want, Germany is not going to drop austerity (The Telegraph blogs)

Italy Unemployment Rate Remains Close to 20-Year-High Amid Slump (Bloomberg)

Greece suffers more misery as retails sales slump by nearly a third: With a eurozone record of 27.5% of Greeks unemployed, the country's retailers say the economy has gone into freefall (The Guardian)

Spain's economy shrinks for seventh straight quarter (Reuters)

Slovenia Bank Rescue at 20% GDP Means No Escaping EU Aid (Bloomberg)

Ireland may spend any spare budget cash rather than ease austerity (Reuters)

George Osborne warns Bank of England over economic recovery plans: Chancellor tells Sir Mervyn King that financial policy committee must consider impact of its actions over bank capital (The Guardian)

[In the US] Wealth Gap Among Races Has Widened Since Recession (The New York Times)

Diebold cutting 700 jobs as part of companywide efforts to slash up to $150 million in costs (The Plain Dealer of Cleveland, Ohio)

Ecolab Quarterly Sales Rise 2%, to Cut 500 Jobs in Restructuring (Bloomberg)

Influential economist says Wall Street's full of 'crooks' (The New York Post) Top economist Jeffrey Sachs says Wall Street is full of 'crooks' and hasn't changed since the financial crash: The IMF adviser also blamed 'a docile president, a docile White House and a docile regulatory system' (The Independent) Columbia Economist Dr. Jeffrey Sachs speaks candidly on monetary reform [Full version speech] (Youtube) [See also initial Economic Signs of the Times blog post.]

     The aim of this blog is to show (mostly from reports in mainstream respected news sources) that there is reason to believe that both the United States and the global economies remain fragile in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008 and that a number of threats that exist today could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. This blog further attempts to show that the financial crisis of 2008 was largely a result of the devastating consequences of excessive risk taking and the absence of effective regulation of such behavior. Furthermore, this blog maintains that not only have the lessons that should have been learned from this experience not been learned, but that the risks to the economy, including the persistent building up of "too big to fail" institutions, have actually increased since the crisis began. Finally this blog also brings to light, from time to time, reports of a parallel threat to economic well-being developing in the energy industry, which suggest an energy shock may be coming much closer in time than is generally imagined.

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