Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday roundup (03-31-14)

'Very painful': World heading for bust 'unlike any other', says Jeremy Grantham [March 25] (The Sydney Morning Herald) Jeremy Grantham: The Fed is killing the recovery: The money manager argues that the Fed's interventions have ruined the very recovery it was supposed to stimulate and that the market is poised to disappoint investors. (Fortune)

The Changing Face of Global Risk by Nouriel Roubini (Project Syndicate)

Eurozone inflation falls to 0.5% in March (The BBC) Euro zone inflation drops to lowest since 2009 (Reuters)

France's public deficit tops government target in 2013 (Reuters)

France sits on record mountain of public debt: France has admitted to having mounting problems to meet public deficit targets as weak tax revenue has spoilt plans to reduce debt levels. Fresh figures come as a blow to the president after disastrous local elections. (Deutsche Welle)

Greece passes reform bill, government majority shrinks to two seats (Reuters)

Is the U.S. stock market rigged?: Steve Kroft reports on a new book from Michael Lewis that reveals how some high-speed traders work the stock market to their advantage (CBSNews Sixty Minutes) Speed Trading in a Rigged Market (Bloomberg)



[Versus] Is Michael Lewis Right That the Markets Are Rigged?: Lightspeed Trading Former CEO Steve Ehrlich and Yale University’s Stephen Roach discuss high frequency trading on Bloomberg Television’s “Bloomberg Surveillance.” (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sunday roundup (03-30-14)

Euro zone banks hoarding cash ahead of ECB stress tests: EY (CNBC)

German fin min expects ECB rates to rise: Der Spiegel (Reuters)

Bad loan writedowns soar at China banks (The Financial Times)

Latin America More Vulnerable Than Pre-2008 Crisis, IDB Says (Bloomberg)

Military Waste and Fraud Are the Main Cause of Our Problems [in the US] [Washington's Blog via] (The Big Picture blog)

Outokumpu Strikes Deal To Cut 1,000 Jobs, Close German Facility: Company in Midst of Cost Savings Plan Aiming at €450 Million in Reductions (The Wall Street 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Saturday roundup (03-29-14)

Unofficial Problem Bank list [in the US] declines to 538 Institutions, Q1 2014 Transition Matrix (Calculated Risk blog)

Deutsche Telekom to cut [2,000 to 2,500] more jobs at IT unit - magazine (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Friday roundup (03-26014)

Is the [global] banking system now even more dangerous? Central banks fear so: It is becoming increasingly clear that the Bank of England and the Federal Reserve think the banking system has become more dangerous since the last crisis (The Telegraph)

Eurozone bank lending dips again (Dow Jones Newswires)

Deflating Europe: Is the European Central Bank finally ready to do its job?: Plagued by the persistent threat of deflation, the European Central Bank is considering bringing out the big guns. (Fortune) A deflationary future beckons for much of Europe, but still the ECB won’t listen: The eurozone has been in paralysis a long time, first in the face of financial crisis and now the clear and present danger of deflation (The Telegraph)

Weak German price data heightens ECB's deflation dilemma (Reuters) Germany Starts To Look Vulnerable (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

Spain slips into deflation in March (Marketwatch) Spain falls into deflation in March (The Associated Press)

Spain just misses 2013 public deficit target (Reuters)

Bank of England says may revive securitisation to aid recovery (Reuters) It’s back: Once a cause of the financial world’s problems, securitisation is now part of the solution [Jan. 11] (The Economist) [Alan Greenspan testified as follows to the US Congress:] "What went wrong with global economic policies that had worked so effectively for nearly four decades? The breakdown has been most apparent in the securitization of home mortgages. The evidence strongly suggests that without the excess demand from securitizers, subprime mortgage originations (undeniably the original source of crisis) would have been far smaller and defaults accordingly far fewer." [Oct. 23, 2008] (U. S. News and World Report blogs)

Japan to Speed Up Spending as Consumers Flash Warning: Economy (Bloomberg)

[In the US] PwC is sued for $1 billion over MF Global collapse (Reuters)

Citigroup: Too Big to Fail, Too Complicated to Manage? (Barron's blogs)

We're in a private debt crisis that could lead to the next economic collapse: Richard Vague [VIDEO] (Yahoo!'s The Daily Ticker)

California's Historic Drought (The Atlantic)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Thursday roundup (03-27-14)

Europe's economic crisis is getting worse not better, says Caritas report: Survey shows increase in the number of new poor in seven countries and challenges the official European Union discourse (The Guardian)

UK consumers in '£5bn black hole' of hidden debt: Demos report finds debts amounting to £200 per household are made up of unpaid rent, council tax and utility bills (The Guardian)

Bank of England readies tools to rein in risky mortgage lending (Reuters)

IMF agrees $14-18 bln bailout for Ukraine (Reuters) Windfall for hedge funds and Russian banks as IMF rescues Ukraine: Ukraine’s premier said his country was “on the edge of economic and financial bankruptcy”, but will comply with demands for drastic austerity by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Tighter sanctions will be tough, but Russia can't afford them (CNBC)

China bank hit by multi-day cash run (CNNMoney)

Citigroup Fails Federal Reserve’s Stress Test for 2nd Time in 3 Years (The New York Times blogs) Failing Stress Test Is Another Stumble for Citigroup (The New York Times blogs)

$1 trillion student loan debt widens US wealth gap (The Associated Press)

Toys 'R' Us cuts 500 jobs (NJBiz)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 03-27-14)

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 dropped by 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 311,000 in the seven days ended March 22, the Labor Department said Thursday." (Marketwatch)

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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wednesday roundup (03-26-14)

ECB's Weidmann says quantitative easing not out of the question (Reuters)

ECB's Makuch says higher deflation risks in euro zone, ECB to act if needed (Reuters) Euro Zone Faces Real Deflation Risk Says Spain's ECB Council Member [Luis Maria Linde]: Comments Echo Other ECB officials, Signaling the ECB May Be Considering Further Measures (The Wall Street Journal)

A depressingly familiar reality lies behind the UK’s economic miracle: Growth is predicted to depend entirely on rising household spending, a recovering housing market, and the questionable assumption of a bounce in business investment (The Telegraph)

Recession warning for Russia (CNNMoney)

China heading toward a debt crisis with global ramifications: Banking vet [VIDEO] (Yahoo!'s The Daily Ticker)

Bank of America to pay $9.3 bln to settle mortgage bond claims (Reuters)

Virtu Filing Shines Light on High-Frequency Trading (Bloomberg) The Holy Grail Of Trading Has Been Found: HFT Firm Reveals 1 Losing Trading Day In 1238 Days Of Trading (ZeroHedge blog) Virtu IPO Poised to Make a (Multi-) Billionaire of Vinnie Viola (The Wall Street Journal blogs) Betting on the bogeyman (CNBC)

Wal-Mart's dependence on food stamps, revealed (The Los Angeles Times)

Cargill to outsource IT services; 900 jobs affected (The Star-Tribune of Minneapolis, Minnesota)

Levi Strauss eliminating 800 jobs to cut costs (The Los Angeles 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Tuesday roundup (03-25-14)

ECB's Visco warns on deflation, says markets could turn on Italy (Reuters)

Visco Says Italy Must Show Debt Sustainability Amid Low Growth (Bloomberg)

Monks recant: Bundesbank opens the door to QE blitz by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

UK inflation hits new four-year low, wages still lag (Reuters)

Royal Mail to cut 1,600 jobs following privatisation to 'reduce costs' (The Independent) Union warns of industrial action as Royal Mail cuts 1,300 jobs (Reuters)

S&P cuts Brazil credit rating, citing weak growth (Marketwatch) Brazil at risk of recession as S&P downgrades debt to near junk: Rating agency cuts Brazil’s debt one notch to BBB-, citing “fiscal slippage”, bad economic management, and one-off tricks that flattered the public accounts  by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

U.S. banks enjoy 'too-big-to-fail' advantage: Fed study (Reuters) Fed Economist Says Big Bank Borrowing Advantage Increases Risk (Bloomberg)

Sales of new homes fall to five-month low: Demand softens in all regions but Midwest (Marketwatch)

Out of Gas: Most Americans Can't Afford New Cars (NBCNews)

NEWSPAPERS ARE DEAD; LONG LIVE JOURNALISM (stratechery)

How an Arizona teen turned her jewelry passion into a multimillion-dollar business [Video] (Yahoo!'s The Daily Ticker)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Monday roundup (03-24-14)

Russia Facing Recession as Sanctions Likely to Intensify (Bloomberg)

Capital controls feared in Russia after $70bn flight: Investors are withdrawing money at a rapidly increasing rate amid escalating sanctions from the West by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

BNP Paribas says to cut 1,600 jobs in Ukraine (Reuters)

The Crisis in Ukraine Really Could Blow Up the Global Economy (The New Republic)

Fear of slowdown in US and eurozone as China's factories cut output: Manufacturing activity falls to lowest level in eight months as Beijing's economic reforms start to bite (The Guardian) China Manufacturing Gauge Falls as Slowdown Deepens (Bloomberg)

BOJ's Iwata warns of deflation risk if inflation stays below 1 pct (Reuters)

Economists: Rising interest rates are the biggest threat to recovery [in the United States] (The Washington Post 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sunday roundup (03-23-14)

G7 leaders to hold crisis talks on Ukraine during nuclear summit (Reuters) Obama and Allies Seek Firm, United Response To Russia on Crimea (The New York Times) U.S. lawmakers, on visit to Ukraine, call for continued aid against Russian threat (The Washington Post) Are tougher sanctions against Russia to come? (The Associated Press)

The Pain in Spain: Violent protests are a reminder that Europe’s economic woes have not gone away (The Independent)

Forget Russia Dumping U.S. Treasuries … Here’s the REAL Economic Threat (ZeroHedge blog)

Farming in America: 'There's a growing discontent' (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Saturday roundup (03-22-14)

ECB’s Constancio Sees Downside Risks to European Recovery (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

Spain Anti-Austerity Protesters Clash With Police (The Associated Press)

[In the US] Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 552 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday roundup (03-21-14)

Euro Zone’s Economy Is Still Ailing, but Improving (The New York Times)

U.K. Posts Larger-Than-Forecast Deficit as Spending Rises (Bloomberg)

Consumer credit and falling savings are indeed driving Britain’s unhealthy boomlet by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

Obama makes insurance company bailout bigger despite public outrage (FoxNews) Obama’s ever-growing insurance company bailout (The New York Post)

More discouraging news for discouraged workers: New study (CNBC) Long-term jobless face a dark future in U.S.: study (Reuters)

Some state pensions in dire straits (USAToday)

Credit Suisse to pay $885 mln in FHFA mortgage fraud case (Reuters)

Sprint cuts at least 1,400 jobs at call centers, other areas (FierceWireless)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Thursday roundup (03-20-14)

The Future of Europe: An Interview with George Soros (The New York Review of Books)

London ‘Draining Life’ From Rest of U.K. Economy (The Associated Press)

S&P Dims Outlook on Russia to 'Negative' on Geopolitical Jitters (FoxBusiness)

Emerging markets face ordeal by fire as Fed’s Janet Yellen turns tough by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

Fed Finds That Nearly All Big U.S. Banks Have Sufficient Capital Buffers (The New York Times blogs) [BUT ...] Most Big Banks [= JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley] Would Fail a Real Stress Test [Editorial] (Bloomberg) Stress Tests Won’t Prevent the Next Financial Crisis: Expected losses under invented scenarios tell us little about risk and reality. (The Wall Street 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 03-20-14)

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 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 320,000 in the period of March 9 to March 15, the Labor Department said Thursday." (Marketwatch)

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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Wednesday roundup (03-19-14)

Quote of the Day:

"If you look at the amount of wealth that was wiped out at the onset of the crisis, it was about five times as large as the shock that led to the Great Depression." -- Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Jason Furman (The Fiscal Times)

Think Financial Systems Are Safe? Think Again, Warns Carney (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

Debt Load Looms Over Renzi’s Revival Plan for Italy: Euro Credit (Bloomberg)

Budget 2014: Britain’s false recovery is a credit mirage, unlike real recovery in the US: The UK has a current account deficit running at more than 5pc of GDP, the worst in a quarter of a century and by far the worst of the G7 by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Fed may raise rates as soon as next spring, Yellen suggests (Reuters)

Postal Service bailout? USPS billions in the red as lawmakers push reform (FoxNews)

Debt crisis nears tipping point: “Creditors have their foot on the throat of the global economy”: An entire generation of students is sinking under the weight of debt, while banks and schools make off like bandit (Alternet)

The bankers behind FDR and the Glass-Steagall Act: Big bankers in the wake of the Great Depression were more inclined to regulate the U.S. financial system than today. by Nomi Prins (Fortune)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Tuesday roundup (03-18-14)

The utter collapse of human civilization will be ‘difficult to avoid,’ NASA funded study says (National Post) NASA Study Concludes When Civilization Will End, And It's Not Looking Good for Us (PolicyMic) A Minimal Model for Human and Nature Interaction by Safa Motesharrei, School of Public Policy, University of Maryland; Jorge Rivas, Department of Political Science, University of Minnesota; and Eugenia Kalnay, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of Maryland (ArchiveOrg)

Another public-debt crisis is on its way. Let’s start fighting it now (The Globe and Mail of Toronto)

Greece and troika strike deal to release €10bn in aid: PM Antonis Samaras says poorest 1 million Greeks will benefit from deal with EU, ECB and IMF to tune of €500m (The Guardian)

Mark Carney says Bank of England needs more power: Governor unveils vision for reform as Bank shakeup announced with appointments of Nemat Shafik and Ben Broadbent (The Guardian)

UK austerity measures likely to hurt society's poorest, OECD warns: Organisation says pace of cuts likely to intensify over next year and urges government to do more to tackle inequality (The Guardian)

Britain's real debt iceberg is getting scarily little attention
(CityAM)

China FDI data indicates sharp slowdown in February (Reuters)

China Home-Price Growth Slows in Big Cities on Tight Credit (Bloomberg)

The Default Of A Chinese Property Developer Has People Freaked Out (The Business Insider)
China Does Not Look Well (Macro Business blog) HSBC’s stress test includes a 50pc house price crash in China and Hong Kong by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

Can China Defuse Its Debt Bomb? (Forbes)

The Five-Year Fantasy Is Ending by Charles Hugh Smith (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Monday roundup (03-17-14)


Global regulators to intensify efforts to revive securitisation (Reuters)

At 0.7 percent, eurozone inflation slips further below the European Central Bank's target (The Associated Press) Eurozone inflation falls to 0.7% in February (The BBC)

George Soros Predicts Ukraine Could Ruin The EU (The Daily Beast)

Looming property default in China raises fears of broader crisis: Nomura said the number of ghost towns has spread beyond the well-known disaster stories of Ordos and Wenzhou to at least eight other sites by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

BoE has 'no confidence' a failing big bank could be saved: Deputy Governor Sir Jon Cunliffe not sure if regulators could stave off the collapse of a 'giant' global bank (The Telegraph) Banks will carry on being 'too big to fail': No major financial institution has produced a plan for their failure that meets the Bank of England's standards (The Telegraph)

Fed Challenge: Pull Back Without Pulling the Rug Out [March 15] (The New York Times)

James Rickards – The Monetary System Will Collapse: Excellent interview in English by RTL Z (Dutch TV) with James G. Rickards: The Monetary System Will Collapse (Investment Watch Blog)
Jim Rickards: Our Monetary System Is Instable and It Will Collapse (ETF Daily News) RTL Z interviewt econoom James Rickards: het monetaire systeem zal instorten [in which Rickards says we are in a global depression] (RTLNieuws)

Fannie Mae Wind-Down Deemed Threat to Home Recovery: Mortgages (Bloomberg)

NY state regulators eyeing Wells Fargo foreclosure manual (The New York Post) Nation’s Largest Mortgage Servicer Allegedly Had Formal Process To Fake Documents (Think Progress) [Manual in pdf format @] (StopForeclosureFraud)

Addressing growing student debt (Econbrowser blog)

Huntsville [in Alabama] staring at $1M-plus budget deficit unless sales tax collections improve (AL)

Republican Lawmakers Want to Cut 115,000 Civilian Defense Jobs (Government Executive)

The New Populist Movement: Organizing to Take Back America. (The Huffington 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Sunday roundup (03-16-014)

Greece protests over government plans to sell off historic national buildings: Angry demonstrations in Athens after public buildings around the Acropolis and other landmarks included in privatisation list (The Guardian)

Swiss Bank Refuses To Give Client His Physical Gold (King World News)

The Russians Have Already Quietly Pulled Their Money From The West (ZeroHedge blog)

Rickards: The new balance of financial terror (The Darien Times)

Fed's Plosser 'very worried' about QE consequences (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Saturday roundup (03-15-14)

Business leaders worry sanctions on Russia over Ukraine could disrupt world economy (McClatchy Foreign Staff)

Fischer Says Bailout of Financial Firm Should Never Happen Again (Bloomberg)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 559 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Friday roundup (03-14-14)

Deflation 'ogre' threatens to derail Europe's fragile recovery (The Irish Independent)

West prepares sanctions as Russia presses on with Crimea takeover (Reuters)

UBS chief's pay rises by a fifth as metals probe revealed (Reuters)

Italy's public debt rises to 2.0895 trillion euros: Up 20.5 billion in January, country under Europe's microscope (ANSAMed)

Spanish public debt hits record high at close of 2013 (FoxNews Latino)

Big Drop in Foreigners' Treasury Holdings at Fed Stirs Talk: Record $105 Billion Pulled From Custody; One Theory: Russia Moved Its Stash (The Wall Street Journal) Fire-sale of US Treasuries is a warning of acute stress across the world by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

US FDIC sues 16 banks for rigging Libor (Reuters) [The names of these banks are JPMorgan Chase; Bank of America; Citigroup; Barclays; Credit Suisse Group AG; UBS AG; Deutsche Bank AG; HSBC Holdings; Lloyds Banking Group; Royal Bank of Canada; The Royal Bank of Scotland; Société Générale; The Norinchukin Bank of Japan; Coöperatieve Centrale Raiffeisen-Boerenleenbank, B.A. of the Netherlands; The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi; and Portigon AG.] (FoxBusiness)

People Think We’re in a Recession. Don’t Blame Them. (The New York Times blogs)

CA Technologies lays off an additional 600 workers (Newsday)

SUNY Downstate Announces 600 Layoffs at LICH (NY1News)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Thursday roundup (03-13-14)

We will need decades of austerity, not years: Government after government in almost every country in the world has piled up future commitments without setting aside any funds to meet them. (The Telegraph)

Falling Euro-Zone Yields Point to Deflation, Not QE (The Wall Street Journal blogs) [Nonetheless] ECB ready to fight deflation, keeps close eye on euro: Draghi (Reuters)

[European] Banks fear "too small to survive," not "too big to fail" - UBS boss (Reuters)

Italy warned by EU on budget deficit (Xinhua)

Not Just Talk: Pope Francis Cleans Up Finances in First Year (NBCNews)

Irish economy posts shock decline [of 2.3 percent in fourth quarter] after record debt sale (Reuters)

Bankers behaving badly face six-year bonus clawback by BoE (Reuters)

China warns of dangerous Russia sanctions 'spiral' (Reuters) Russia counts cost [= "a wave of capital flight and a shattering economic crisis"] as West tightens sanctions noose: The West has threatened visa bans and an asset freeze on individuals unless Russia steps back from the brink on the annexation of Crimea by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

[Meanwhile] China premier warns on economic slowdown as data fans stimulus talk (Reuters) Economists See China Slowdown as Biggest Threat to U.S. Recovery: Economists in WSJ Survey Say Real U.S. GDP Will Grow 2.7% in 2014 (The Wall Street Journal) China Default Risk at 5-Week High as Li Speaks After Chaori (Bloomberg)

The Fed Was Supposed to Rein In Its Bailout Powers. Instead It Did This. (Mother Jones)

How to rob a bank: William Black at TEDxUMKC (Youtube)



     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 03-13-14)

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 fell by 9,000 to 315,000 in the period of March 2 to March 8, the Labor Department said Thursday." (Marketwatch)

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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Wednesday roundup (03-12-14)

Soros Says Europe Faces 25-Year [Japanese-style] Slump Without Overhaul (Bloomberg)

Paralysed ECB leaves Europe at the mercy of deflation shock from China: China will seek to pass its deflationary parcel to Europe, the one region that lacks a proper central bank and the governing coherence to protect its own interests by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard -- ["Most of western Europe is already in outright deflation. So are the Balkans, the Baltic states and the old Habsburg core."] (The Telegraph)

Italy presents sweeping tax cuts, plans to raise deficit goal (Reuters)

Italy pledges to pay overdue debts to private firms (Reuters)

BOJ keeps stimulus in place, cuts view on exports in warning sign (Reuters)

Quebec's debt 'worryingly high,' report says (CBCNews)

Fed Nominees Vow To Fight for Recovery (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

Fed Nominee Fischer Says Expansionary Monetary Policy Needed (Bloomberg)

The Fed Has Failed (and Will Continue to Fail), Part 1 by Charles Hugh Smith (Of Two Minds blog) How The Fed Has Failed America, Part 2 by Charles Hugh Smith (Of Two Minds blog)

This Is the Fed's Most Brazen and Least Known Handout to Private Banks (The New Republic)

Californians' food assistance use doubled during recession (The Sacramento Bee blogs)

NetApp Plans to Cut 600 Jobs Amid Weak Government Demand (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tuesday roundup (03-11-14)

Emerging Markets Risk Dragging Down Global Growth (Forbes)

As Global Debt Soars, Where's The Big Recovery? (Investor's Business Daily)

El Niño warning puts farmers and commodities investors on alert [The Financial Times via] (CNBC)

The spectre of eurozone deflation: The ECB is failing. The aim must be to raise inflation, particularly in surplus countries (The Financial Times)

European banks face double hit from emerging market slide and ECB crackdown: OECD warns bond tapering by Fed has “only just begun” and threatens to trigger a fresh wave of capital flight by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Greek recession slightly deeper than expected (Reuters)

Are you [in the United States] ready for deflation?: U.S. prices are tracking eerily with 1990s Japan (Marketwatch)

UniCredit Posts Record Loss, Plans 8,500 Job Cuts (Bloomberg) UniCredit, Italy’s Largest Bank, Posts Surprisingly Big Loss (The New York Times)

Sesa Aims to Fire 40% of Goa Staff [= 1,000 workers] as Ore Ban Cripples Business (Bloomberg)

Zurich Insurance to cut about 800 jobs globally (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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday roundup (03-10-14)

IMF economist sees deflation risk, especially in euro zone - report (Reuters)

Top German body calls for QE blitz to avert deflation trap in Europe: Head of German Institute for Economic Research demands €60bn of bond purchases each month to halt contraction of credit and avert Japanese-style trap by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

France will use reserve fund to keep deficit pledge - minister (Reuters)

Greek plan to return to debt markets worries creditors: Concerns grow over the country's commitment to economic reforms (Bloomberg)

Japan's deficit hits record as economic growth slows (The BBC) Japan’s Economy Expands Less Than Initially Estimated in 4Q (Bloomberg)

China’s credit reckoning draws closer: Bond defaults, trade deficits raise new red flags (Marketwatch)

Prem Watsa's 9 Observations Why There Is A "Monstrous Real Estate Bubble In China Which Could Burst Anytime" (ZeroHedge blog)

U.S. public pensions need more than investment windfall (Reuters)

The Fed Is Not Printing Money, It's Doing Something Much Worse (Forbes)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Sunday roundup (03-09-14)

Global Debt Exceeds $100 Trillion as Governments Binge, BIS Says (Bloomberg)

George Soros blasts 'parasite' banks: George Soros, the billionaire investor, has warned that little has changed since the 2008 crisis in the 'parasite' banking sector (The Telegraph)

Deflation fears as China inflation drops to 2% (Agence France-Presse)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Saturday roundup (03-08-14)

China February exports tumble unexpectedly (Reuters)

U.S. consumer credit growth held back by credit card decline (Reuters)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 564 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Friday roundup (03-07-14)

Eurozone banks’ sovereign exposure hits new high (International Financing Review)

George Osborne faces £20 billion black hole [in public finances] [The Financial Times via] (CNBC)

Britain accused of breaching European treaty with austerity cuts to councils: Council of Europe finds local authorities unable to provide essential services – a breach of self-government charter (The Guardian)

Has China Reached its ‘Bear Stearns’ Moment?: The country’s first-ever bond default could potentially reshape the entire financial sector (Time)

Why this is the worst jobs recovery for state and local governments [in the United States] in 40 years (The Washington Post blogs)

Plunging mall traffic is killing some restaurants and stores (CBSMoneywatch)

Everything must go: There's a flood of store closings (CNNMoney)

15 Vermont Towns Vote to Start a Public Bank that Works for Them, Not Wall Street (The Contributor)

Researchers find high-fructose corn syrup may be tied to worldwide collapse of bee colonies (Phys Org)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Thursday roundup (03-06-14)

ECB holds rates, and nerve, in face of deflation risk (Reuters) ECB Stands Firm Despite Deflation Threat -- Here's Why (Forbes)

BOE Extends Stimulus to Sixth Year Underpinning Revival (Bloomberg) Bank of England Keeps Benchmark Rate at Record Low (The New York Times)

U.S. factory orders, shipments fall in January (Reuters)

Staples to close 225 stores in U.S. and Canada by 2015 (The Washington Post) Staples to shut 225 stores in North America as sales fall (Reuters)

Disney’s Game and Internet Division Cuts One-Quarter of Its Work Force [roughly 700 employees] (The New York 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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 03-06-14)

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 26,000 to a seasonally adjusted 323,000 in the week ended March 1, the Labor Department said Thursday." (Marketwatch)

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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Wednesday roundup (03-05-14)

ECB Deflation Risk Put at 35% by Morgan Stanley Eyeing [the Experience of] Japan (Bloomberg)

EU warns Italy is in economic trouble, France to miss deficit targets (Reuters)

EU Says Italy Faces a ‘Major Challenge’ in Reducing Debt (Bloomberg) EU Sees 'Excessive' Imbalances in Italian Economy: German Current Account Surplus not 'Excessive' (The Wall Street Journal)

Hoping to Shore Up Ukraine Government, European Union Offers Billions in Aid (The New York Times) EU ready to provide Ukraine aid worth $15 billion (The Associated Press)

China $21 Trillion Debt Load Seen Swelling on ’14 Economic Plan (Bloomberg) Chinese miracle slows: American economist Jim Rickards looks at the risks inside China as its growth slows (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation)

U.S. service sector growth at slowest since Feb 2010 - ISM survey (Reuters)

Over 2 million people now without unemployment benefits (MSNBC)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Tuesday roundup (03-04-14)

Quote of the Day:

"It is a wise rule, and should be fundamental in a government disposed to cherish its credit, and at the same time to restrain the use of it within the limits of its faculties, 'never to borrow a dollar without laying a tax in the same instant for paying the interest annually, and the principal within a given term; and to consider that tax as pledged to the creditors on the public faith.' On such a pledge as this, sacredly observed, a government may always command, on a reasonable interest, all the lendable money of their citizens, while the necessity of an equivalent tax is a salutary warning to them and their constituents against oppressions, bankruptcy, and its inevitable consequence, revolution." -- Thomas Jefferson in a letter to John W. Eppes, written on June 24, 1813, from Letters and Addresses of Thomas Jefferson, edited by William B. Parker and Jonas Viles (Google books)

Carmakers fret emerging markets gloom could overshadow European recovery (Reuters)

Obama budget trims deficit, but US debt still huge by history's yardstick: President Obama's budget for fiscal year 2015, released Tuesday, contains good news and not-so-good news. Its forecasts call for falling annual budget deficits, but US debt remains historically high for the long term. (The Christian Science Monitor) Budget proposal won’t tame debt, interest would soon exceed military spending (FoxNews)

Fed won't end QE this year: Blackhorse: Richard Duncan, Chief Economist, Blackhorse Asset Management, explains why the Fed's quantitative easing (QE) is unlikely to end in 2014. (CNBC)



A Struggling RadioShack Will Close 20% of Its Stores (The New York Times) Will 1,100 Stores Closures Save RadioShack? Probably Not (Forbes)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Monday roundup (03-03-14)

Draghi says inflation "way below" target, risks becoming entrenched (Reuters) IMF's Lagarde sees risk of long-term low inflation in euro zone (Reuters)

Italy's sovereign debt explodes as economy shrinks in 2013: Italy’s public debt hit a new high in 2013, soaring to a level not seen since the country’s statisticians began taking records. The debt exploded as Europe’s third-largest economy remained locked in recession. (Deutsche Welle) Italy 2013 fiscal deficit hits EU 3 pct limit for second year running, GDP falls 1.9 pct (Reuters)

Christine Lagarde angers Spain with repeat prescription of austerity: IMF head urges Madrid to keep on shaking up the labour market, raising taxes and deregulating business (The Guardian)

How Debt Is Driving The Ukrainian Crisis (Think Progress) The Uncertain Future of Ukraine's Finances: With rapidly shrinking currency reserves and a capital flight problem, Ukraine faces an uncertain financial future. The IMF plans to send a "fact-finding mission" to Kiev next week, but will it be enough? (Spiegel Online) Ukraine financial fall-out exposes Russia's economic weakness (Reuters) Why Ukraine Isn't 'The Ukraine,' And Why That Matters Now [Dec. 9] (The Business Insider) Many Ukrainians Want Russia to Invade: Pro-Russian citizens genuinely fear the new Ukrainian government is fascistic and will persecute them (Time)

U.S. economy headed for "substantial slowdown": Dan Gross (Yahoo!'s The Daily Beast)



Who Gets Thrown Under the Bus in the Next Financial Crisis? by Charles Hugh Smith (Of Two Minds blog)

Carmakers Say Sales Were Sluggish in Chilly February (The New York Times)

The long-term impact of student-loan debt: The $1.2 trillion Americans hold in student-loan debt is a problem for all of us. (USAToday)

Michelin to cut 500 jobs in Nova Scotia (The Canadian Press) Michelin job cuts at Granton plant 'devastating': Company says market for small car and truck tires is diminishing (CBCNews)

     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 exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.