Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday roundup (05-31-13)

Euro-Area Jobless Rate Rises to Record Amid Recession: Economy (Bloomberg)

Record unemployment, low inflation underline Europe's pain (Reuters) Europe's Record Youth Unemployment: The Scariest Graph in the World Just Got Scarier: The new number that should terrify Europe is 62.5 percent. (The Atlantic) EU leaders sound the alarm on youth unemployment (The Associated Press)

PIMCO braces for euro zone debt writedowns as revival disappoints (Reuters)

El-Erian's 4 Global Transitions: Pimco's Mohamed El-Erian explains how higher Treasury yields and Japan's economic experiment are impacting global markets. (CNBC)



More Greek debt relief possible says Eurogroup chief (Agence France Presse)

Italy Jobless Rate Reaches 12%, 36-Year-High Amid Recession (Bloomberg) Italy Youth Unemployment Hits Record 40.5% (Reuters)

Some Italian banks risk problems, central bank chief (Reuters)

Spanish wages depressed amid eurozone crisis: Mariano Rajoy's government believes wage devaluation is one of the few options left to make the country more competitive (The Guardian)

[US] Data signal soft economy but not abrupt slowdown (Reuters)

ACHUTHAN: 'The Explanation Is Simple: Recession Kills Inflation' (The Business Insider)

Regulators seize small bank in Wisconsin; brings this year’s US bank failures to 14 (The Washington Post) Banks of Wisconsin d/b/a Bank of Kenosha of Kenosha WI 35386 had a troubled assets ratio of 279.2%. (BankTracker)

FDIC Problem Bank List Includes Almost 9% of All Banks (Problem Bank List)

     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.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Thursday roundup (05-30-13)

OECD: Europe's Recession Threatens Entire Global Economy (The Associated Press)

Eurozone Debt Crisis Exposes What EU Leaders Fear Most (Money Morning)

Eurozone retreats from austerity - but only as far as 'austerity lite': Recession, social unrest and political necessity force shift in eurozone, but its economic future remains deeply uncertain (The Guardian)

Hollande, Merkel call for full-time eurozone boss (The Associated Press)

Rising Oil Prices: The Euro Zone's Next Big Problem? (CNBC)

Italy's debt costs rise in hint rally of the vulnerable may be over (Reuters)

Economy in U.S. Grew at 2.4% Rate, Less Than First Estimated (Bloomberg) First quarter GDP revised slightly lower; austerity bites (Reuters)

Americans have rebuilt less than half of wealth lost to the recession, study says (The Washington Post) U.S. households far from regaining their wealth (The Associated Press) How Much Household Wealth Has Been Recovered? (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)

America’s Misplaced Deficit Complacency (Project Syndicate)

The huge misconception at the heart of “too big to fail” ["making banks smaller was never what legislators — most of them, anyway — had in mind."] (Quartz)

David Stockman: We're Blind to the Debt Bubble (PBS Newshour)

Homeowners Got ‘Screwed’ Once Before, Now It’s Happening Again: Barofsky (Yahoo!'s The Daily Ticker)



Roiled by mystery GMO wheat, US races to reassure buyers (Reuters)

GM salmon can breed with wild fish and pass on genes (The BBC)

Download the True Food Shopper's Guide: How to Avoid Foods Made with Genetically Modified Organisms [GMOs] (The Center for Food Safety)

Panasonic to cut 5,000 workers from automotive and industrial division (Reuters)

     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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 05-30-13)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. (See this post.)

IT'S A RECOVERY! (And it has been a recovery for every week since the Nov. 25, 2009 report, with the exception of the Aug. 19, 2010 report.)

"Applications for jobless benefits increased 10,000 to 354,000 in the week ended May 25, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington." (Bloomberg)

Jobless claims unexpectedly rise, but still within 2013 range (Reuters) TABLE - U.S. jobless claims rose in latest week (Reuters)

SEE LAST WEEK'S POST HERE.

     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 that an energy shock may be coming much closer in time than is generally imagined.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Wednesday roundup (05-29-13)

No saviour in sight as world credit cycle rolls over: This may be as good as it gets for the world economy. The HSBC index for the global business cycle hit a three-year high around Easter, and has since rolled over. (The Telegraph)

Global economy remains weak, OECD says, cutting growth forecast (The Los Angeles Times)

Risk of Bank Failures Is Rising in Europe, E.C.B. Warns (The New York Times) ECB Warns Financial Weakness Could Break Best Lull in Two Years (Bloomberg)

EU shifts policy focus [away from austerity] in quest for growth (Reuters) "... France, Spain, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Slovenia, will be given more time to make spending cuts ..." (The BBC)

EU urges France to revamp pensions, rein in spending (Reuters) Francois Hollande tells European Commission it can't 'dictate' to France: Francois Hollande has warned the European Commission not to “dictate” orders on how France should run its economy after the Brussels executive called for urgent eurozone reforms to avert a “social emergency”. (The Telegraph)

Italian bankruptcies hit record high (ANSA)

Greek Seven-Year Slump Seen by OECD Testing Limit of Bailout Aid (Bloomberg)

Portugal sticks to bailout targets, plays down OECD warning (Reuters)

OECD cuts UK economic growth forecasts for 2014: Thinktank says eurozone crisis to drag on growth next year, but urges chancellor to stick with spending cuts as Brussels loosens EU austerity throttle (The Guardian)

A housing bubble era loan makes a comeback [in the US], with a twist: More and more people are borrowing against their brokerage accounts to buy condos and expand their businesses. That's not reassuring. (Fortune)

Big Banks Still Write the Rules: Fmr. Inspector General of Bank Bailout [Neil Barofsky] (Yahoo!'s The Daily Ticker)



Sibanye Gold to Cut 1,110 Jobs to Return Beatrix West to Profit (Bloomberg)

     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.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Tuesday roundup (05-28-13)

EU leaders sound the alarm on youth unemployment (The Associated Press) France, Germany declare war on job crisis for the young in eurozone (Agence France Presse) Europe's 'new deal' for jobless dismissed as rhetoric: The Prado in Madrid has become the unlikely symbol of Europe’s unemployment curse. The museum recently advertised for 11 low-level jobs, mostly guarding paintings by Velasquez, El Greco and Picasso from enthusiastic tourists. {And ...] (The Telegraph)

Austerity could only ever bring Europe so far: There can be no solution to the European Union's crisis without restructuring economic and monetary union (The Guardian)

Germany fears revolution if Europe scraps welfare model (Reuters)

Austerity About-Face: German Government to Gamble on Stimulus: With the euro crisis refusing to relent, the German government is backing away from its austerity mandates and planning to spend billions to stimulate ailing economies in Southern European. But can the program succeed? (Spiegel Online)

Germany to Blame for Euro Zone Crisis: Study (CNBC)

Why a German exit from the euro zone would be disastrous – even for Germany (Reuters blogs)

French Consumer Confidence Slumps, Matching 2008 Record Low (Bloomberg)

French Central Bank Chief Urges Spending Cuts (CNBC)

France's central bank head warns FTT could 'destroy' jobs: France's central bank boss has warned that a planned financial transactions tax could “destroy” parts of the country’s banking industry, cost jobs, and damage the public finances. (The Telegraph)

Portuguese bestseller calls for euro exit (The Telegraph blogs) Book Supporting Euro Exit Becomes Instant Bestseller in Portugal; AfD Update (Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis blog)

Under austerity, Italians are scrapping cars for bikes (Quartz)

Eurozone fears for Slovenia as bad debt brings economy to a standstill: Semi-privatisation and crony capitalism threaten 'catastroika' for the Balkan state (The Guardian)

Why hasn’t austerity been more of a drag on the U.S. economy? (The Washington Post blogs) Homes See Biggest Price Gain in Years, Propelling Stocks (The New York Times) Consumers more optimistic about economy than any other time since recession (The Associated Press)

Quantitative Easing, Central Bank Purchases and Corporate Buybacks Account for Much of the Rise In Stock Prices [Washington's Blog via] (The Big Picture blog)

Krugman Feud With Reinhart-Rogoff Escalates as Austerity Debated (Bloomberg)

Bond Vortex In The Works? (ZeroHedge blog) Some Interesting Facts Not Being Reported By The Media -- "I can guarantee you that the smart 'inside' money sees something really ugly coming ..." (The Golden Truth blog)

On QE, inflation and Deflation (Credit Writedowns blog)

Citi settles U.S. suit over $3.5 billion in mortgage securities (Reuters)

7 million students brace for surge in loan rates (CNNMoney)

Highway Technologies' abrupt bankruptcy affects 740 employees nationwide (Houston Business Journal)

     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.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Monday roundup (05-27-13)

Europe’s problem isn’t a recession – it’s a depression (The Globe and Mail of Toronto)

Europe's austerity-to-growth shift largely semantic (Reuters)

S&P says France must deliver promised budget cuts to protect rating (Reuters)

Large Risk of Instability in Japan; Rates Climb Even With Japan Buying 70% of New Issuance (Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis blog)

The Falling-Bridge Lesson: The U.S. Infrastructure Failure Is Still Totally Inexcusable: America's rebuilding needs aren't going away. But the basement-bargain price of rebuilding America is. (The Atlantic)

7 Easy Steps to Invest Like Warren Buffett (Pragmatic Capitalism) Defending Warren Buffett (The Reformed Broker)

     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.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday roundup (05-26-13)

Single bank watchdog becomes mammoth project for ECB (Reuters)

The Fed's Real Worry - A Pick Up In Deflation (streettalklive)

One Of The Biggest Forces That's Been Holding Back The Economy Is Finally About To Disappear (The Business Insider) States: Mo Money Mo Problems (Calculated Risk blog) California Faces a New Quandary, Too Much Money (The New York Times)

We’re Spending Fewer Federal Dollars On Infrastructure Than We Have In 20 Years (National Memo)

40 Statistics About The Fall Of The U.S. Economy That Are Almost Too Crazy To Believe (Mens News Daily)

Suddenly bankrupt: People with great credit scores are hurtling into crisis (The Financial Post)

Hot Trend in Automobiles: Not Owning One (CNBC)

     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.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Saturday roundup (05-25-13)

EU threatens France over economic failings: The European Commission will use sweeping new powers backed by sanctions to impose controversial social and economic reforms on European countries later this week. (The Telegraph)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 767 Institutions (Calculated Risk blog)

Protesters ‘March Against Monsanto’ across US, in over 50 countries in anti-GMO rally (The Associated Press)

     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.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Friday roundup (05-24-13)

Enrich (Not Beggar) Thy Neighbor In The New Great Depression [Interview with Tangent Capital's Jim Rickards] (Cliff Küle's Notes blog) (Youtube)



Gretchen Morgenson on Why Banks Are Still Too Big To Fail: The New York Times columnist tells Bill that, five years after the country’s economic near-collapse, banks are still too big to fail, too big to manage, and too big to trust. (Bill Moyers & Company)



Meet The People Who Are Subverting Wall Street Reform (Think Progress) Is Wall Street literally writing America's laws now? Citigroup reportedly helped draft more than 80 percent of a House finance bill (This Week) Banks’ Lobbyists Help in Drafting Financial Bills (The New York Times blogs)

New York to sue BofA, Wells Fargo over mortgage practices (Reuters)

Thanks To QE Bernanke Has Injected Foreign Banks With Over $1 Trillion In Cash For First Time Ever (ZeroHedge blog)

Portugal warns of deficit target miss (Agence France Presse) Portugal PM says may need new easing of 2014 deficit goal (Reuters)

Mammoth Japan Stimulus Still Not Enough: Hayman's Bass (CNBC) Bass: BOJ Facing 'Rational Investor Paradox': Kyle Bass, Hayman Capital Management, says rational investors are starting to sell Japanese government bonds. (CNBC)



Steel distributor Kloeckner to cut more jobs [more than 2,000 jobs], sites (Reuters)

     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.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Thursday roundup (05-23-13)

European Leaders Saying No to Austerity (Bloomberg)

ECB can't solve euro zone crisis alone: Weidmann (Reuters)

Portugal Posts Wider Budget Deficit as Spending Increases (Bloomberg)

Veteran fears 'beginning of the end' for Japan as bond market buckles: Global markets face a witches’ brew of new risks as Japan’s monetary adventure wobbles, China slows further and the US Fed prepares to shut the spigot of dollar liquidity. (The Telegraph)

Bass Sees BOJ Bond Purchases Overwhelmed as Investors Dump Debt (Bloomberg)

Deflation threat should keep Fed engaged: There's "zero chance" the Federal Reserve will start tapering off its bond-buying in June, says Keith Springer of Springer Financial Advisors. The Fed's too worried about deflation to do that. [AUDIO] (Marketwatch)

How a Big-Bank Failure Could Unfold by Marc Jarsulic and Simon Johnson (The New York Times blogs)

GMO Labeling Bill Voted Down In Senate (The Huffington Post)

Download the True Food Shopper's Guide: How to Avoid Foods Made with Genetically Modified Organisms [GMOs] (The Center for Food Safety)

     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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 05-23-13)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. (See this post.)

IT'S A RECOVERY! (And it has been a recovery for every week since the Nov. 25, 2009 report, with the exception of the Aug. 19, 2010 report.)

"Jobless claims fell by 23,000 to 340,000 in the week ended May 18, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington." (Bloomberg)

Jobless Claims Fall As Manufacturing Growth Slows Again In May (The Capital Spectator)

Jobs, housing data show economy has some muscle (Reuters)

SEE LAST WEEK'S POST HERE.

     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 that an energy shock may be coming much closer in time than is generally imagined.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Wednesday roundup (05-22-13)

Europe’s Leaders Say No to Austerity, Don’t Say Yes to Stimulus (Bloomberg)

Cyprus central bank sees 'substantial' risks to economy (Reuters)

Germany's Bundesbank chief says France must cut deficit (Agence France Presse)

Millions of Italians Stuck in Poverty: Report (CNBC)

IMF says Britain 'a long way' from recovery (Agence France Presse) Austerity is a task for another day, IMF tells George Osborne: International Monetary Fund advises chancellor to defer cuts programme and instead stimulate faltering economy (The Guardian)

Kyle Bass: Japanese Bond Market Is Teetering on Epic Ruin (MoneyNews)

Bernanke Says Premature Tightening Would Endanger Recovery (Bloomberg) Fed Endorses Stimulus, but the Message Is Garbled (The New York Times)

IMF says Washington cutting budget deficits too quickly [May 20] (Reuters)

Ben vs. Bernie on Too Big to Fail (The Street)

Student loan defaults rising despite a way out (CBS Moneywatch)

Ford Australia to close Broadmeadows and Geelong plants, 1,200 jobs to go (The Australian Broadcasting Commission)

     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.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Tuesday roundup (05-21-13)


Europe faces lost decade, says [incoming Bank of England governor] Mark Carney: Mark Carney, the incoming Bank of England Governor, has warned that Europe could face a decade of stagnation unless it takes the kind of bold measures seen in Japan. (The Telegraph) Carney issues warning to Europe about economy (The Globe and Mail of Toronto)

Fed’s Bullard Says ECB Needs ‘Aggressive’ QE to Avoid Japan Fate (Bloomberg) Fed's Bullard recommends euro zone consider quantitative easing ["to counter slowing inflation and recession"] (Reuters) Monetary Policy Options in a Low Policy Rate Environment by James Bullard (The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)

[Italy's Prime Minister] Letta tells EU to change or 'implode': Premier addresses parliament on eve of European debut (ANSA)

Will IMF repeat its anti-austerity call [to the UK]?: George Osborne has been doing his utmost to get the IMF mission to change its view during talks over the past fortnight (The Guardian blogs)

Mark Carney warns Europe against lost decade of austerity: Fall in UK consumer prices index gives incoming Bank of England governor room to manoeuvre (The Guardian) Why falling inflation matters: A drop in inflation eases the squeeze on consumer real incomes by reducing the gap between price increases and wage increases (The Guardian blogs)

Kyle Bass Commissioned A Poll That Confirmed To Him That Japan Is Going To Implode (The Business Insider)

[US] Banks still want bailouts [editorial] (The Philadelphia Inquirer)

Elizabeth Warren Asks New Treasury Secretary If He'll Be As Bad On Big Banks As The Old One (VIDEO) (The Huffington Post)

Medtronic cutting 2,000 jobs worldwide, 500 in Minnesota (The Star Tribune of Minneapolis MN)

NetApp to lay off 900, including some employees in RTP (The News Observer of Raleigh, NC)

     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.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Monday roundup (05-20-13)


France must reform or face punitive measures: EU's Oettinger (Reuters)

Italy's industrial output falls back to 1970s: Italy’s president Giorgio Napolitano has called for immediate measures to combat a “dramatic crisis” after the country’s industrial output fell back to levels reached in 1979. (The Telegraph)

Portugal's Banks Fear 'Cyprus Virus' [The Financial Times via] (CNBC)

[UK] Energy bills 'could overtake mortgages in five years’: Energy bills are rising so steeply that they could overtake mortgage repayments in parts of Britain in just five years’ time, the chief executive of supplier, First Utility, has claimed. (The Telegraph)

Japan panel warns of dangers if debt not addressed (Reuters)

Shrinking [US] deficit reduces pressure for budget deal (Reuters)

Fed up with Ben: Econ in depression (The New York Post)

Fed's Fisher: Dodd Frank Law 'Horribly Complex': Dallas Federal Reserve President Richard Fisher explains the importance of simplifying bank regulations. (CNBC)



Is EVERY Market Rigged? [Washingon's Blog via] (The Big Picture blog)

Suburban poverty soars (CNNMoney)

For Detroit in crisis, next six weeks determine bankruptcy fate (Reuters)

Shaw’s to Lay Off 700 People in New England (Valley News of White River Junction, Vermont)

Alcoa Cuts 500 Jobs In Canada (The Associated Press)

     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.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sunday roundup (05-19-13)


BIS and IMF attacks on quantitative easing deeply misguided warn monetarists: Monetarists across the world have warned that the International Monetary Fund and the Bank for International Settlements are making an historic error by calling for a withdrawal of emergency stimulus before the global economy has fully recovered. (The Telegraph)

Bundesbank Chief Says France Must Take Deficit Cuts Seriously (Reuters)

Sir Mervyn King: don't demonise bankers: Outgoing Bank of England governor blames regulatory failure for banking crisis and not individuals (The Guardian) Sir Mervyn King: stop 'demonising' bankers: Sir Mervyn King, the outgoing head of the Bank of England, has called for an end of banker bashing saying it’s wrong to “demonise individuals” for the failure of the financial system. (The Telegraph)

MORGAN STANLEY: And Now It's Time To Worry About Deflation Again (The Business Insider)

Rogue banks remain too big to fail: Our view: 15% cash cushions would force them to break up or be conservative. (USAToday)

Angry JP Morgan shareholders seek to strip Jamie Dimon of chairmanship: US banking giant facing revolt by dissidents in wake of $6bn London Whale trading loss last year (The Guardian)

Everything Is Rigged: The Biggest Price-Fixing Scandal Ever: The Illuminati were amateurs. The second huge financial scandal of the year reveals the real international conspiracy: There's no price the big banks can't fix by Matt Taibi [magazine article associated with Rolling Stone blog post linked here on April 26] (Rolling Stone)

     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.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Saturday roundup (05-18-13)


That's a 'Depression': Europe's Double-Dip Is Officially Longer Than Its Great Recession: The Old Continent has that 1930s feeling (The Atlantic)

The World's 5 Most Debt-Ridden Countries [= Japan, Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Ireland, as measured by Debt to GDP] (The Motley Fool)

Rome protest turns up heat on new PM Letta [as thousands protest] (Reuters) Rome protesters call on Letta government to boost jobs in Italy (EuroNews)



BOE’s King Says More Must Be Done to Spur Britain’s Recovery (Bloomberg)

Unofficial Problem Bank [in the US] list declines to 770 Institutions (Calculated Risk blog)

     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.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Friday roundup (05-17-13)


Oil Price-Fixing Probe Widens as Neste Helps EU Inquiry (Bloomberg) Platts in lockdown as investigators continue oil probe (Reuters) Everything Is Rigged, Continued: European Commission Raids Oil Companies in Price-Fixing Probe by Matt Taibi (Rolling Stone blogs)

Cypriot Bailout Program Faces ‘Unusually High’ Risks, IMF Says (Bloomberg)

[US] Treasury Prepares to Take Measures to Avoid Default (CNBC)

Regulators seize small bank in Arizona [on Tuesday May 14]; brings this year’s US bank failures to 13 (The Washington Post) Central Arizona Bank of Scottsdale AZ had a troubled assets ratio of 165.9%. (BankTracker) Central Arizona Bank Fails – Third Bank Failure In A Week For Capitol Bancorp, Ltd (Problem Bank List) "A failure of any one bank subsidiary [of Capitol Bancorp] could trigger the failure of all banking subsidiaries" [of which nine now remain.] (Calculated Risk blog)

     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.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Thursday roundup (05-16-13)


Falling eurozone inflation raises deflation fears (euronews) (Youtube) Cooling prices, falling imports highlight euro zone's malaise (Reuters)



Central banks saved world economy, now beware the fallout: IMF (Reuters)

As Japan Courts Growth, Europe Keeps Up Its Love Affair With Austerity (The New York Times)

Consumer Prices in U.S. Dropped More Than Forecast in April (Bloomberg) U.S. Economy In Second Month Of Deflation Pressures Bernanke On QE (Forbes)  Key Measures show low and falling inflation in April (Calculated Risk blog)

Philly Fed: Manufacturing tumbles (CBSMoneywatch) Philly Fed Manufacturing Survey Shows Contraction in May (Calculated Risk blog)

Housing Starts in U.S. Fell in April to Five-Month Low (Bloomberg) Housing Starts decline sharply in April to 853,000 SAAR (Calculated Risk blog)

If the Fed Knows Banks Are Too Big, Why Doesn’t It Make Them Smaller? by James Kwak, [The Baseline Scenario via] (Truth Out)

The Vicious New Bank Shakedown That Could Seriously Ruin Your Life: JPMorgan Chase and other big banks are accused of running a frightening scam collecting on credit card debt. (AlterNet)

Next Group That May Be Slammed by Debt: Farmers (CNBC)

These California cities could be next in bankruptcy (USAToday)

RBS to Cut 1,400 Jobs in UK Retail Revamp (Dow Jones Newswires)

Alcoa cuts 500 jobs, 2 production lines in Canada (The Associated Press)

     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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 05-16-13)


A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. (See this post.)

IT'S A RECOVERY! (And it has been a recovery for every week since the Nov. 25, 2009 report, with the exception of the Aug. 19, 2010 report.)

"Initial jobless claims climbed by 32,000 to a seasonally adjusted 360,000 in the week ended May 11, the Labor Department said Thursday." (Marketwatch)

April's Pinch Gets A Bit Tighter (The Capital Spectator)

SEE LAST WEEK'S POST HERE.

     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 that an energy shock may be coming much closer in time than is generally imagined.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Wednesday roundup (05-15-13)



Euro zone economy shrinks in first-quarter, marks longest ever recession (Reuters) Recession in eurozone is now the currency bloc’s longest, surpassing even 2008-2009 crisis (The Associated Press) Eurozone now in its longest recession: Economic output across the single currency area fell by 0.2% in the first three months of 2013 (The Guardian) Eurozone's Struggling Economies Mired in Recession (The Associated Press)

Euro Zone Politics Hinder Response as Slump Persists (The New York Times)

Germany in 'Stagnation,' Top Merkel Advisor Warns (CNBC) Crisis Is Spreading to Europe's Core: Economic Expert: Peter Bofinger, economist from the German Council of Economic Experts, tells CNBC that he is concerned that the worst of the euro zone crisis is not over and it is spreading to the core. (CNBC)



France Slips Into Recession, Adding Pressure on Hollande (Bloomberg) German Economy Barely Expands While France Contracts (Bloomberg) Pain spreads to the heart of Europe (The Globe and Mail of Toronto)

France given two extra years to reach deficit targets: European Commission urges France to speed up enactment of structural reforms (The Irish Times)

France Must Lead Breakup of Euro (Bloomberg)

Heroic Spain is damned if it does, and damned if it doesn't: My colleague Jeremy Warner has set off a storm in the Spanish press and something close to a diplomatic incident by asserting in a blog that Spain is insolvent. (The Telegraph)

Wholesale Prices in U.S. Decrease by Most in Three Years (Bloomberg)

Production Falls as U.S. Feels Global Weakness: Economy (Bloomberg) Industrial Output In April Slumps The Most In Eight Months (The Capital Spectator)

A generation drowning in debt: More students and grads falling behind in loan payments, study shows: A study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York shows that student loan debt is growing at an alarming rate as a stagnant job market and other signs of a poor economy take their toll. (The New York Daily News)

Steelmaker ThyssenKrupp to Cut 3,000 Office Jobs (The Associated Press)

     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.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Tuesday roundup (05-14-13)


Why have so few bankers gone to jail? (The Economist blogs)

E.U. Officials Quarrel Over the Pace of Bank Reform (The New York Times)

Wealth Gap Widens In Rich Countries As Austerity Threatens To Worsen Inequality: OECD (Reuters)

The UK is up to its neck in debt, but here's the thing: we just don't care (The Telegraph blogs)

RBS says will take 18 months to plug capital gap (Reuters)

[US] Student Loan Debt Horror Stories, Revealed (U. S. News & World Report blogs)

Air France says it will cut 500 cabin jobs this year (Agence France Presse)

A Brief History of Cycles and Time, Part 1 (guest essay) (Of Two Minds blog) A Brief History of Cycles and Time, Part 2 (Of Two Minds blog)

     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.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Monday roundup (03-13-13)


Europe could drop interest rate below zero on excess bank deposits (The Los Angeles Times)

Confusion Reigns: Europe Bickers Over Banking Union (CNBC)

France and Germany: A tale of two countries drifting apart [Pew Research Center via] (The BBC) The New Sick Man of Europe: the European Union: French Dispirited; Attitudes Diverge Sharply from Germans (Pew Research Center)

Spain, Portugal urge eurozone to unfreeze credit, speed up banking union: But Germany calls for more cautious approach to creating central authority for rescuing banks (The Associated Press)

The Beginning of The End for Japan? 5* (Cliff Küle's Notes blog) OtterWood Observations on Japan, May 2013 (Youtube)



Fixing 'Too Big To Tolerate' Banks [in the US] (Forbes)

Is the Fed Afraid to Regulate the Big Banks? by Simon Johnson (Bloomberg)

The Non-Threat of Inflation -- "Anyone talking about inflationary threats or hyperinflation isn't paying attention right now." (the bonddad blog)

Could Detroit declare bankruptcy? (The Associated Press) Detroit insolvent, EM Kevyn Orr says: City's cash flow running in the red, ability to borrow exhausted (The Detroit News) City of Detroit is financially 'insolvent' (CNNMoney)

Supreme Court Supports Monsanto in Seed-Replication Case (The New York Times) Monsanto’s Biotech Empire Gets A Supreme Boost (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

     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.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Sunday roundup (05-12-13)


Clean energy rise slows in Europe as incentives yield to austerity (The Globe and Mail of Toronto)

Germany pushing for faster reform in euro zone: magazine (Reuters)

Spanish prelate fears 'mutual hatred' over euro crisis: The Catholic Primate of Spain has called for a profound shift in Europe's debt crisis policy to avert social collapse, warning that soaring unemployment in Spain and across southern Europe has become "very dangerous". (The Telegraph)

Spain Home Expropriation Plans Seen Violating EU Bailout (Bloomberg)

Soros: Italy Market Calm Will Be Short-Lived (Reuters)

Student Debt and the Crushing of the American Dream by Joseph E. Stiglitz (The New York Times blogs)

     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.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Saturday roundup (05-11-13)


G7 Agrees No Banks Are Too Big To Fail: Talks outside London are mainly focused on unfinished banking reforms five years after the financial crisis first bit. (Sky News) UK's Osborne says G7 vows to tackle bank reform with urgency (Reuters)

Thousands of Israelis march against austerity budget (Agence France Presse)

Expectations for Central Banks Concern [the Fed's] Plosser: Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia President Charles Plosser talks about global central bank policies, the U.S. economy and stocks. Plosser, speaking with Tom Keene and Sara Eisen on Bloomberg Television's "Surveillance," also discusses global central bank policies. Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, also speaks. [May 9] (Bloomberg)



Bankers: College debt bubble mimics housing bubble (USAToday)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 771 Institutions (Calculated Risk blog)

Will the Failure of Pisgah Community Bank Trigger the Collapse of 10 Related Banks? (Problem Bank List) Sunrise Bank, GA, Closed As Regulators Zero In On Capitol Bancorp (Problem Bank List) [These bank failures were posted yesterday, but the reports from the Problem Bank List site were not available to include at time of posting.]

Boeing to shed 1,500 IT jobs here over next three years: Boeing will inform its information-technology workers Monday that 1,500 IT jobs in the Puget Sound region will go away in the next three years through a combination of layoffs, attrition and relocation to Missouri and South Carolina. (The Seattle Times)

     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.