Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Wednesday roundup (04-30-14)

Warning signals flash for ECB ahead of May meeting (Reuters)

The ECB betting on "creditless" recovery (Sober Look blog)

IMF says Russian economy already in recession, bleeding capital (The Los Angeles Times)

IMF approves $17 billion bailout for Ukraine amid risks (Reuters)

China’s Income Inequality Surpasses U.S., Posing Risk for Xi (Bloomberg)

Harsh Winter Puts The Brakes On U.S. Economic Growth (National Public Radio blogs) Private debt, public penny-pinching holding GDP back: Income inequality hamstringing the U.S. economy (Marketwatch)

Fed tapers another $10 billion (CNBC) Fed to Keep Trimming Stimulus as Economy Shakes Off Stall (Bloomberg) Forecasting a Speedup in Growth, the Fed Again Cuts Bond Purchases (The New York Times)

U.S. government says it lost $11.2 billion on GM bailout (Reuters)

Express Scripts to cut 1,890 jobs, close two facilities (St. Louis 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 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, April 29, 2014

Tuesday roundup (04-29-14)

Can the World Economy Break Its Addiction to Stimulus? (Bloomberg)

Monti Says Europe Will Take Action in Case of Deflation Danger (Bloomberg) The Next Japan: How Deflation Threatens The European Union (Forbes)

German inflation, pointing to euro zone, picks up less than expected (Reuters)

French lawmakers approve multi-year deficit reduction plan (Reuters)

Death toll from severe storms [in the US] at 35; 70 million remain under threat (CNN)



Is James Rickards Right About A Coming Monetary Apocalypse? (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, April 28, 2014

Monday roundup (04-28-14)

Recovery Has Created Far More Low-Wage Jobs Than Better-Paid Ones (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.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Sunday roundup (04-27-14)

Europe’s Next Moral Hazard (Project Syndicate)

Struggling Italian economy poses potential threat to whole of Europe: Italy could quickly descend into chaos if new government fails to turn around struggling economy, threatening whole of Europe (South China Morning 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.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Saturday roundup (04-26-14)

The Global Land Grab: Rich countries are buying up poor countries. (Slate)

Group of Seven agrees swift sanctions against Kremlin over Ukraine (Reuters)

Greece warned of 14.9 billion euro financing gap [The Financial Times via] (CNBC)

The American Dream is now just that for its middle classes – a dream: For years, the US enjoyed unrivalled prosperity - and its middle classes were the envy of the world. No longer. Last week, a study of decades of economic data concluded that the US had fallen behind other nations, apart, that is, from the super-rich (The Observer)

California governor issues second drought emergency proclamation (Reuters)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 513 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, April 25, 2014

Friday roundup (04-25-14)

Water [globally is] becoming more valuable than gold (CNNMoney)

Europe is impotent in the face of deflation: Falling prices are mainly the result of stagnation, but the ECB doesn’t want to know (The Telegraph)

Greece still needs EU help to stay afloat, Commission says (Reuters) EU executive says Greece behind schedule in debt reduction efforts (Deutsche Welle)

Russia 'Wants To Start World War III': Ukrainian PM Yatsenyuk (NBCNews)

Russia Debt Rating Cut to Step Above Junk at S&P (Bloomberg) With Downgraded Debt, A Plunging Currency, And A Weak Stock Market Russia Is In Real Trouble (Forbes) Storm Clouds Strike Russian Economy as S&P Cuts Debt Rating (FoxBusiness) Russian Debt Downgraded as Western Leaders Talk Sanctions (Foreign Policy)

Volkswagen to lay off 900 autoworkers in two Brazilian states (Reuters)

Middle class & living paycheck to paycheck [in the United States] (CNNMoney)

Why the Housing Market Is Still Stalling the Economy (The New York Times)

Justice Dept. Seeks Mortgage Deal With Bank of America (The New York Times blogs) U.S. Said to Ask BofA for More Than $13 Billion Over RMBS [= residential mortgage-backed securities] (Bloomberg) Bank of America's potential $13 billion settlement spurs question: Who's next? (The San Francisco Business Times)

South Carolina bank is seized [by regulators]; first failure in the state in nearly two years (The Post and Courier of Charleston, South Carolina) Allendale County Bank of Fairfax SC had a troubled assets ratio of 33.5%. (BankTracker)

Drought covers 100% of California for first time in 15 years (The Los Angeles Times)

[Vermont is] Leading the charge for GMO labeling [Editorial] (The Brattleboro Informer) Food labeling bill [in Vermont] stirs debate at State Capitol [in Minnesota] about genetically modified products: A bill requiring the labeling of genetically modified foods got an informational hearing in St. Paul. (The Star Tribune of Minneapolis-St. Paul) Vermont passed a bill requiring GMO labeling; should Louisiana? (The Times-Picayune of New Orleans)

Download the True Food Shopper's Guide: How to Avoid Foods Made with Genetically Modified Organisms [GMOs] (The Center for Food Safety) Say "No" to GMOs (Non-GMO Project)

     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, April 24, 2014

Thursday roundup (04-24-14)

Global deflation looms, warns SocGen bear Albert Edwards (CNBC) Albert Edwards: China Headed Toward Outright Deflation: Edwards sees evidence of looming deflation in China and the US, just not in the CPI (Value Walk) Suspicion grows that China is exporting deflation worldwide by driving down yuan by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

Draghi Says ECB Is Open to Asset Purchases to Battle Low Inflation: European Central Bank Chief Cautions High Euro Could Derail Euro-Zone Recovery (The Wall Street Journal) Weaker inflation could prompt broad ECB asset-buying - Draghi (Reuters)

Cash drop in the euro zone adds to impetus for ECB action (Reuters)

The Economic Monster Called Deflation (Bloomberg View) Might Be Time to Short the Euro (Bloomberg View)

Greece Plans to Push for Promised Debt Relief in Talks (Bloomberg)

Kerry warns Russia of further sanctions if Geneva pact goes ignored (CNBC) Russia braces for crippling US sanctions as Ukraine turns deadly: US President Barack Obama has accused Russia of violating both the spirit and the letter of the Geneva deal to end the crisis in Ukraine by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

El Nino Risk Increases as Pacific Gets Warmer: Carbon & Climate (Bloomberg)

The Next Massive Bailout [in the United States]: Student Loans (Time)

President Warren? Don’t Worry, Wall Street. Yet. (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

Vermont to become first state with GMO labeling (CBSMoneywatch) Vermont to Require GMO Labeling (Mother Jones) Consumers Union statement on Vermont GMO labeling bill (Consumers Union)

Download the True Food Shopper's Guide: How to Avoid Foods Made with Genetically Modified Organisms [GMOs] (The Center for Food Safety) Say "No" to GMOs (Non-GMO Project)

The One Chart That Explains Our Grim Economic Future (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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 04-24-14)

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 jumped by 24,000 to a seasonally adjusted 329,000 in the seven days ended April 19, 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, April 23, 2014

Wednesday roundup (04-21-14)

Eurozone upturn fails to dispel deflation fears: Business survey shows economic recovery is gaining momentum but prices remain in limbo (The Telegraph)

Deficits In Europe Decrease While Debt Levels Mount (MNI)  EU in slow progress on deficit cuts (The BBC)

France deficit plan treads fine line, betting on growth (Reuters) France raises deficit forecasts for 2014 and 2015, barely meeting EU target (The Associated Press)

Austerity won’t be going away [in Britain]: With borrowing last year still running at 6.6pc of UK output, George Osborne still faces a tough task to fix the public finances [Editorial] (The Telegraph)

BOE voted 9-0 [on April 9] to keep rates at record low, QE unchanged (Marketwatch)

Agency: banking system in independent Scotland risks Iceland-style meltdown: S&P says it would be 'challenging' for Edinburgh government to support its banks without backing of London (The Guardian)

China factory activity shrinks for fourth month (Reuters)

U.S. new home sales hint at prolonged housing weakness (Reuters) New Home Sales Plunge [14.5 percent] in Setback to Housing Recovery (NBCNews) Housing Rebound in U.S. Losing Steam as Prices Rise (Bloomberg)

Harrisburg [Pennsylvania] faces new budget deficit (Fox43)

Textron to cut 750 jobs in Cessna and Beechcraft as it combines its recent acquisition (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 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, April 22, 2014

Tuesday roundup (04-22-14)

Deflation Is About to Wallop Europe [first of three parts] (Bloomberg View) Deflation is already a reality for a quarter of prices in the Eurozone (City AM)

Citi: QE coming soon to a euro-zone city near you (Marketwatch blogs)

Europe braces for gas showdown with Russia, helped by Japan's nuclear restart: European regulators and power companies are battening down the hatches in case the crisis escalates by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

As in the Cold War, Russia Is Vulnerable on Energy (Newsweek)

Exit plan unresolved as Portugal's last bailout review kicks off (Reuters) Portugal faces key tests in turning page on bailout (Agence France-Presse)

Britain to rack up fifth biggest budget deficit on record despite years of austerity (This is Money)

Is the UK mending fast enough? (The BBC)

9.1 Million U.S. Homes Still 'Underwater', Down 26 Percent (World Property Channel)

Average credit card interest up to shocking 21% (The New York Post)

U.S. agency urges private lenders to ease automatic default rules on student loans (The Washington Post)

The Potential Bubble the Federal Reserve Cares Most About [= the bond market] (FiveThirtyEight)

Guess Who Makes More Than Bankers: Their Regulators: In 2012 at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. the average pay was $190,000. At the Federal Reserve? It won't say. (The Wall Street Journal)

The Political Poison of Vested Interests by Charles Hugh Smith (Of Two Minds blog)

Teck to cut 600 jobs and delay reopening of B.C. coal mine: Vancouver-based company reports 2014 Q1 profit at less than half of 2013 Q1 profit (The Canadian Press) Teck Resources Ltd to cut 600 jobs, warns current coal supply is ‘uneconomic’ (The Financial 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.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday roundup (04-21-14)

Why Europe needs deflation: Downward price adjustment is crucial to achieving faster recovery in the euro zone (LiveMint)

Times are so tough in Italy that Mafiosi are considering getting jobs (The Independent)

Japan exports growth slows sharply, keeps pressure on BOJ to act (Reuters) Japan's trade deficit quadruples in March (The BBC) Japan posts largest-ever trade deficit (The Financial Times)

California’s Thirsting Farmland (The New York Times)

The Savings and Loan Crisis Demonstrates the Importance of Glass-Steagall: Bill Black: When remembering recently passed away Charles Keating,a key architect of the S&L Crisis, we are reminded of the importance of the Glass- Steagall Act of 1933 (The Real News) The Savings and Loan Crisis Demonstrates the Importance of Glass--Steagall (Youtube)



Elizabeth Warren's Assault on Wall Street: The Massachusetts senator claims bankers are making so much money because the system is rigged. (ABCNews)


ABC US News | ABC Business News

Major media publisher [right-wing Axel Springer of Germany] admits it is “afraid of Google”: Worries the search giant is turning into a "superstate" immune from prosecution. (ArsTechnica)

     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, April 20, 2014

Sunday roundup (04-20-14)

Eurozone peripheral nations see interest bill climb (The Financial Times)

Russia stares at recession as Ukraine crisis scars economy (Agence France-Presse)

Productivity among British firms is still 5% lower than its pre-recession levels making it difficult for the UK to regain its competitive edge (This is Money)

Student debt holds back many would-be home buyers [in the United States]: Of the many factors holding back young home buyers — rising prices, tougher lending standards, a still-shaky job market — none looms larger than the recent explosion of college debt. (The Los Angeles Times)

Banks Cling to Bundles Holding Risk (The New York Times)

The End of Our Financial Illusions by Simon Johnson (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 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, April 19, 2014

Saturday roundup (04-19-14)

European Debt Deflation (The New York Times blogs)

Wall Street deregulation pushed by Clinton advisers, documents reveal: Previously restricted papers reveal attempts to rush president to support act, later blamed for deepening banking crisis (The Guardian)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 521 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, April 18, 2014

Friday roundup (04-18-14)

Super Mario rushes to the rescue, this time against deflation (The Globe and Mail of Toronto)

Bank of Italy says "essential" to fight too low euro zone inflation (Reuters)

Italy request to push back budget targets dismays Brussels: Renzi’s government has raised the projection for this year’s fiscal deficit to 2.6% of GDP from 2.5% (The Financial Times)

WHAT JANET YELLEN DIDN’T SAY: THE B-WORD (The New Yorker)

Are We Headed for a Credit Market Crash? (House of Debt)

     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, April 17, 2014

Thursday roundup (04-17-14)

Out of Ammo? The Eroding Power of Central Banks: Since the financial crisis, central banks have slashed interest rates, purchased vast quantities of sovereign bonds and bailed out banks. Now, though, their influence appears to be on the wane with measures producing paltry results. Do they still have control? (Spiegel Online)

Eight EU states in deflation as calls grow for QE in Sweden: Sweden’s Riksbank admitted in its latest monetary report that something unexpected had gone wrong by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard -- [The countries are Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, and Sweden] (The Telegraph) Don’t go potty on the periphery: Southern Europe’s economies are in worse shape than tumbling bond yields suggest (The Economist)

ECB hardliner Weidmann comes in from the cold as deflation threatens (Reuters)

Did Europe misdiagnose debt crisis and make it worse? [book review; the author expects that the Eurozone will experience "a Japanese-style period of stagnation and deflation"] (Reuters)

France to slow deficit cuts but respect 2015 target: minister (Reuters)

France Targets Welfare for Big Spending Cuts (The Associated Press)

Italy asks EU for more time to meet deficit target (Agence France-Presse)

Russia Recession Not Out Of The Question (Forbes)

China’s Ticking Debt Bomb (Wharton)

Japan Downgrades Assessment of Economy (Dow Jones Newswires)

For China and Japan, the Economic Challenges Ahead Are Similar (The New York Times)

Thousands more public-sector jobs than planned to be cut [in Canada], watchdog says: Parliamentary budget officer's report says 8,900 more cuts coming over 3 years (The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation)

[In the US] "Fed Policies Have Made The Rich Much Richer", Fed President Admits (ZeroHedge blog)

Home Depot puts a lid on new-store openings: WSJ (Reuters)

Too Big to Jail [= William K. Black's views on the lack of prosecutions on the part of the US government in regard to (alleged) financial fraud in the banking industry] (Newsweek)

How a 56-Year-Old Engineer’s $45,000 Loss Spurred SEC Probe (Bloomberg)

Sheriff: Author Michael Ruppert [interviewed in the documentary Collapse] dies of self-inflicted gunshot wound: BODY DISCOVERED SUNDAY IN CALISTOGA (Napa Valley Register) CollapseNet's Founder, Michael C. Ruppert, Has Committed Suicide - UPDATE 04-16-2014: MCR's Suicidal Tendecies and the Note He Left (CollapseNet)

     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, 04-17-14)

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.)

"The U.S. Labor Department reported that initial claims for unemployment-insurance benefits reached 304,000 in the week that ended April 12." (Marketwatch)

Jobless claims edge up, but 4-week average falls to prerecession level (The Los Angeles Times)

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, April 16, 2014

Wednesday roundup (04-16-14)

Deflation Threat Becomes More Widespread in Europe: Consumer Prices Rise at Slowest Pace For More Than Four Years in Year To March (The Wall Street Journal) [shorter version here:] (Marketwatch) Euro zone inflation stuck in 'danger zone', keeps pressure on ECB (Reuters)

Low inflation to linger for years in euro zone (Reuters)

Russian economy hit by Ukraine fallout; 0% growth in 2014 possible (The Los Angeles Times)

US financial showdown with Russia is more dangerous than it looks, for both sides: The US Treasury faces a more formidable prey with Russia, the world's biggest producer of energy with a $2 trillion economy, superb scientists and a first-strike nuclear arsenal by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

China growth slows as property fears rise (The Washington Post)

China defaults mount among inter-company loans (Reuters)

Obama, Mich. in talks to free up $100M for Detroit (The Detroit Free Press) Nearly half of likely Michigan voters oppose governor's Detroit bailout plan, poll says (FoxNews)

Beware the worst avalanche in the history of finance: Today the EU is to vote on curbing high-frequency trading to prevent instability and potential meltdown by James Rickards (The London Evening Standard)

     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, April 15, 2014

Tuesday roundup (04-15-14)

The EU Is Enacting A Massive Overhaul Of Europe's Financial System (The Associated Press) Europe reaches end of crisis-driven reform trail to banking union (Reuters)

US CBO Report Highlights Coming Surge in Debt Service Payments (MNI)

Imperial Tobacco [in the UK] to close factories, cut 900 jobs (Marketwatch)

     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, April 14, 2014

Monday roundup (04-14-14)

IMF warns on low inflation (Marketwatch)

ECB set to cut key rate to less than zero, Mario Draghi signals: Bank president hints bolstering of euro requires further ‘monetary’ boost [The Financial Times via] (The Irish Times)

Italy's public debt hits record 2.1072 trillion euros: Up 17.5 billion in February, country under Europe's microscope (ANSAMed)

Pain in Spain as bank warns of 10-year jobs blight and public debt leaps €8.1bn: Spanish bank BBVA says unemployment may take a decade to recover from financial crisis and public debt hits 95% of GDP (The Guardian)

International Bailout of Ukraine, Like Greece Rescue, Faces Major Risks (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

Russia's bond market is Achilles Heel as showdown with West escalates: Country's private companies shut out of global bond markets, raising prospect that they may need state support by Ambrose Evans Pritchard (The Telegraph)

     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, April 13, 2014

Sunday roundup (04-13-14)

Markets wrong to think euro crisis over: UBS chair (CNBC)

ECB Pioneer Confronts Too-Big-to-Fail Banks With Newly Won Clout (Bloomberg)

'A big red flag': [US] City of Birmingham [, Alabama] grapples with $13 million budget deficit, hiring freeze, project delays anticipated (AL 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.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Saturday roundup (04-12-14)

Quote of the Day:

"Based on our experience, once a deflationary mindset takes hold, it is easy to fall into a vicious cycle, whereby people start to postpone consumption and investment, leading to further deflationary pressures." -- Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso in warning statement to the euro zone. (Reuters)

Someone wake up the IMF. It's sleepwalking into another global economic catastrophe: Banks, governments and households still have huge debts. A vast savings glut has been invested in funds linked to junk bonds. There's no easy way out (The Observer)

Draghi: ECB will unleash stimulus if euro strengthens further: Central bank president says any additional strengthening of single currency would warrant non-standard measures such as quantitative easing (The Telegraph) ECB may inject more money into weaker eurozone nations: Bank chief Mario Draghi under pressure to peg back the strength of the euro to boost struggling economies (The Guardian) Draghi: Further euro strength could trigger more easing: ECB president didn’t give specific level that would trigger action (Marketwatch)

Thousands march in Paris, Rome against austerity, economic reforms (Reuters)

[In the US,] Recovery for Whom? [Editorial] (The New York Times)

Greed Is Good: A 300-Year History of a Dangerous Idea: Not long ago, the pursuit of commercial self-interest was largely reviled. How did we come to accept it? (The Atlantic)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 530 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, April 11, 2014

Friday roundup (04-11-14)

The world economy may well be stuck in neutral for years: Low interest rates in the US and Greece are not a sign of recovery, but a warning of permanent stagnation, creating the potential for future financial instability (The Telegraph)

Greece's economy is still a huge mess: Enthusiasm surrounding Thursday's Greek debt offering illustrates just how desperate investors have become in their futile search for yield. (Fortune) Europe has subjected the Greek people to a cruel experiment by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph blogs)

China consumer prices rise, but industry deflation persists (Reuters) China’s Inflation Stays Below Target as Producer Prices Drop (Bloomberg)

Japanese Finance Minister Aso: Companies Not Yet ‘Convinced’ Deflation Has Passed (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

[In the US,] Paying Off Student Loans Puts A Dent In Wallets, And The Economy: Repaying college debts prevents many Americans from investing in homes or retirement. The impact can add up — for individuals and the economy as a whole, a researcher says. (National Public Radio)



     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, April 10, 2014

Thursday roundup (04-10-14)

New Derivatives Rules Rescinded To Help Banks Make More Money (Research Dynamics) Basel eases bank capital rule for derivatives clearing -- ["to avoid crimping economic recovery"] (Reuters) Derivatives Rules Softened in Victory for Banks (Bloomberg)

Gundlach: global economy 'deflationary scare' could happen again (Reuters)

IMF chief says eurozone stimulus is likely (USAToday) Draghi Seen [by Experts Surveyed by Bloomberg] Easing Policy by June as ECB Readies Rate Cut (Bloomberg)

Germany risks EU fines with record current account surplus: Wise Men say country's external surplus will keep rising to a modern-era high of 7.9pc of GDP this year, far above the 6pc limit set by Brussels by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

UK interest rates held at 0.5% by Bank of England (The BBC) UK and US interest rate rises: who will blink first?: The Bank of England left interest rates unchanged at 0.5pc but markets expect a rise next year and are betting the US Federal Reserve will move first. They could be wrong (The Telegraph)

[In the US,] Family Dollar to Close [about 370] Stores as Shoppers Pinched (The Associated Press)

Oshkosh Corp. to slash 760 defense unit jobs (Milwaukee Business Journal)

Canada's CBC cuts 650 jobs, retreats from sports to trim costs (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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 04-10-14)

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.)

"The number of first-time claims for unemployment benefits dropped to 300,000 last week, a decrease of 32,000 from the week before, the Labor Department said Thursday." (The Los Angeles Times)

"That’s the lowest level since May 2007, six months before the Great Recession began and a steeper drop than economists had expected." (Marketwatch)

Jobless claims fall by 32,000, nearing seven-year low: The substantial drop in initial jobless claims could mean a revival in hiring and a rebound in the labor market after a winter-related soft spell. (United Press International)

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, April 9, 2014

Wednesday roundup (04-09-14)

Central Banks See What They Want in Ignoring Deflation (Bloomberg)

Europe weighs bold steps to avoid Japan-like deflation (McClatchy Washington Bureau)

The eurozone's shaky banking system is still the biggest risk to recovery: The IMF's Global Financial Stability Report also provided some sobering statistcics on potential emerging market weaknesses (The Guardian)

Top economists warn Germany that EMU crisis as dangerous as ever: Council on Foreign Relations compares Germany's hardline stance with US policy towards Britain at the end of the Second World War (The Telegraph)  U.S. urges Germany, other European nations to keep deflation at bay (Reuters)

Merkel ally warns against 'wrong signal' to France on deficit (Reuters)

Schaeuble 'can't bear' growth vs austerity debate anymore (Agence France Presse)

Greeks strike against austerity before Merkel visit (Reuters)

Renzi Cuts Italy Growth Forecast, Calls for Rich to Give (Bloomberg)

Putin Threatens Ukraine’s Imports to Turn Economic Screw (Bloomberg)

Fed minutes indicate easy-money policy may persist [in the US]: Minutes from the central bank's last meeting suggest Fed policymakers aren't as eager to start raising interest rates as investors expected. (The Los Angeles Times)

Fed Shows Growing Worry About Low Inflation: Central Bankers Around World Have Expressed Angst About Weakness in Global Economy (The Wall Street Journal)

Survey: Nearly 40 Percent Of Americans Can’t Come Up With $2,000 For Emergency (CBS DC)

Report: 85% of pensions could fail in 30 years (USAToday Money)

Should Investors Prepare for a Dollar Doomsday?: James Rickards, managing director at Tangent Capital Partners and author of “The Death of Money,” explains his view of a coming collapse for the U.S. dollar and the role confidence plays in supporting the currency on Bloomberg Television’s “Market Makers.” -- ["The ultimate thesis is: Deflation is the biggest problem in the world. The world wants to deflate, but central banks and governments cannot have deflation. It increases the debt to GDP ratio, destroys tax collections, creates bad debts, and hurts the banks. So central banks will do anything to avoid deflation. The way they do it is to print money, but if you print enough money, you'll collapse confidence in the dollar."] (Bloomberg)



Jim Rickards: The Demise Of The U.S. Dollar (Youtube)



Bank of America to cut 3,000 support jobs across Latin America, Asia (Reuters)

Industry-backed bill would ban states from passing GMO labeling laws: The food industry's putting its master plan into action (Salon) Legislation would ban state GMO labeling measures (Gannett Washington Bureau) Bill would have FDA decide on labeling genetically modified food (McClatchy Washington Bureau) Pro-GMO Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act Would Repeal Rules To Label GMOs In Food (International Business Times)

Download the True Food Shopper's Guide: How to Avoid Foods Made with Genetically Modified Organisms [GMOs] (The Center for Food Safety) Say "No" to GMOs (Non-GMO Project)

     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, April 8, 2014

Tuesday roundup (04-08-14)

Europe’s Many Jobless See Little Light Yet From Glimmers of a Recovery (The New York Times)

IMF lifts Europe, U.K. growth forecasts; warns of deflation (Marketwatch)

Strong Euro Creating Deflation Risk, Belgium’s Geens Says (Bloomberg)

Italy vows rigour in strategy to change EU fiscal rules (Reuters)

Respected Ukrainian Military Analyst Warns Russian Invasion Imminent, Perhaps Within 24 Hours (Forbes) [US Secretary of State] Kerry says Russia creating pretext for Ukraine invasion (USAToday) A Russian invasion of eastern Ukraine just got more likely. Here's why. (Vox)

UK [Public Sector] Debt Is Actually £100 Billion Higher Than We Thought, Official Stats Body To Say (The Huffington Post)

Now is the time to preempt deflation [in the US] (American Enterprise Institute) Explainer: Why is deflation so harmful? (CBS Moneywatch)

98% Of All Consumer Credit In Past Year Was Student And Car Loans (ZeroHedge blog)

America’s Ponzi scheme: Why Social Security needs to retire by Prof. Laurence Kotlikoff (The PBS NewsHour)

Keiser Report: Force Feeding by Central Banking (E583) [Part 1 of a two-part interview with Jim Rickards] (Russia Today)



Keiser Report: Institutionalized Stealing (E584) [Part 2 of a two-part interview with Jim Rickards] (Russia Today)



Matt Taibbi Extended Interview Pt. 1: Author Matt Taibbi discusses wanting to spark a conversation about socially accepted white-collar crime with his book "The Divide." (The Daily Show with Jon Stewart)



Exclusive - Matt Taibbi Extended Interview Pt. 2: Author Matt Taibbi discusses the hypocrisy of a judicial system that grants criminals at the top of the pyramid bailouts while giving other wrongdoers jail time. (The Daily Show with Jon Stewart)



16 major retail chains closing stores across America (DC Clothesline)

Intel closes Costa Rica operation, cuts 1,500 jobs (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, April 7, 2014

Monday roundup (04-07-14)

Central banks are incubating a crisis the IMF is disinclined to see: IMF chief Christine Lagarde has urged central banks to launch more QE, which has only succeeded in putting a rocket under asset prices (The Telegraph)

Five signs that the global economic recovery may be an illusion: Many policymakers believe the worst is over, but is this just 'groupthink'? And which warnings might the IMF miss this time? (The Guardian blogs)

Bond yields to hit fresh lows as world recovery wilts, growls Saxo bear by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard [April 4] (The Telegraph blogs)

Draghi’s $1.4 Trillion Question Lingers as ECB Mulls QE (Bloomberg)

Disinflationary pressures beyond the euro area (Sober Look blog)

Ukraine's Winter Of Discontent Gives Way To Spring Of Austerity: The International Monetary Fund has agreed to help Ukraine with a loan of more than $14 billion — in exchange for tough austerity measures. And Russia is threatening to raise Ukraine's gas prices. (National Public Radio) Will the IMF Bailout Turn Ukraine Into Another Greece?: Ordinary people will be the undisputed losers in the International Monetary Fund’s loan deal with Ukraine. (The Nation)



China's Debt Chickens Are Coming Home to Roost: Observers worry whether high debt levels, increases in borrowing, and servicing problems will result in an economic crisis. by Satyajit Das (Minyanville) Here’s what’s killing China’s economic growth: Reform state-owned enterprises and investment will follow by Satyajit Das (Marketwatch)

Consumer Credit in U.S. Rose More Than Forecast in February (Bloomberg) U.S. consumer credit rises, likely boosted by student loans (Reuters)

Fed gives banks more time on Volcker rule detail (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.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Sunday roundup (04-06-14)

The Exchange: The uncertainty of paper money: “The Death of Money” author James Rickards tells Rob Cox the end of the international monetary system is imminent and discusses what investors should do to protect themselves. -- ["We're in a depression. It's a global depression. It started in 2007."] (Reuters)



Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 533 Institutions (Calculated Risk blog)

Kuwait Airways to cut 1,000 jobs this year (Arabian Business)

     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, April 5, 2014

Saturday roundup (04-05-14)

Euro zone needs low, possibly lower rates - ECB's Coeure (Reuters)

The real reasons why Draghi flirts with QE: The fear is that money raised from quantitative easing in the eurozone will just be used to prop up banks that need to be allowed to fail (The Telegraph)

No reason to again give France more time to cut deficit: Rehn (Reuters)

FOMC Was Told in December 2008 QE Needed to Be Very Large (Bloomberg)

It’s Still Bad for the Long-Term Unemployed (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 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, April 4, 2014

Friday roundup (04-04-14)

Rickards predicts financial collapse: Death of Money Interview: 03 Apr 2014 - Jim Rickards predicts financial collapse and major panic within three years while discussing his latest book The Death of Money. (Youtube)



Draghi Deflation Fight Seen on Different QE Path to Fed (Bloomberg)

Ukraine PM says will stick to austerity despite Moscow pressure (Reuters)

Bank [of England] warns of trillion dollar asset management 'run' risk: Andy Haldane, Bank of England's financial stability head, warns that risks posed by world's asset management firms are starting to resemble those of the banking industry (The Telegraph)

US employers add 192K jobs; rate stays at 6.7 pct. (The Associated Press) Why this is the jobs recovery for the 1%: The rebound has been particularly good for those in management and professional services jobs. Finance workers make 20% more. (Fortune) A Chronic Sickness Inside the US Labor Market (Forbes)

Bill O'Reilly's Defense of Inequality: Bill O'Reilly claims that America is in decline and lays the blame on liberals for promoting equality. (The Colbert Report on Comedy Central)


Hillshire to close 70-year-old Alabama plant, cut 1,100 jobs (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.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Thursday roundup (04-03-14)

Quote of the Day: "If any of the great corporations of the country were to hire adventurers who make market of themselves in this way, to procure the passage of a general law with a view to the promotion of their private interests, the moral sense of every right-minded man would instinctively denounce the employer and employed as steeped in corruption and the employment as infamous… If the instances were numerous, open, and tolerated, they would be regarded as measuring the decay of the public morals and the degeneracy of the times. No prophetic spirit would be needed to foretell the consequences near at hand." -- Decision by The Supreme Court of the United States in 1874, quoted in "'When Lobbying was Illegal" (Priceonomics)

"The foundation of a republic is the virtue of its citizens. They are at once sovereigns and subjects. As the foundation is undermined, the structure is weakened. When it is destroyed, the fabric must fall. Such is the voice of universal history. The theory of our government is that all public stations are trusts, and that those clothed with them are to be animated in the discharge of their duties solely by considerations of right, justice, and the public good. They are never to descend to a lower plane." -- Trist v. Child - 88 U.S. 441 (1874) (Justia)

IMF warns slow [global] economic recovery will keep interest rates at historic lows: Diagnosis of IMF's World Economic Outlook predicts low interest rates for several years in rich countries (The Guardian)

IMF's Lagarde calls on ECB to ease monetary policy (The Irish Independent) ECB chief Draghi rejects IMF head Lagarde's advice (The Associated Press) Draghi Says Officials Debate QE to Fight Deflation Risk (Bloomberg)

Immobile ECB 'playing with fire' as deflation draws closer: ECB president Mario Draghi reveals 'there was a discussion of QE' but fails to take action once again by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph) Frost in spring: The recovery may be warming but inflation is cooling (The Economist) ECB Continues To Wait For More Information Despite Fears Of 'Protracted Stagnation' -- Draghi (Kitco News) ECB ready to print money if "lowflation" lingers too long (Reuters)

A New Japan First: Negative Rates (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

[In the United States] Construction Is Muted Because Too Many Buildings Went Up During the Boom (The Wall Street Journal blogs)

MF Global customers to recoup $6.7 billion as final payout starts (Reuters)

City of Montreal aims to cut 2,205 jobs over 5 years: Director general recommends abolishing one out of every 2 posts vacant as of December 2013 (The Gazette of Montreal)

Juniper to cut 6 percent jobs [= about 570 jobs], focus on high-growth businesses (Reuters)

Old Math Casts Doubt on Accuracy of Oil Reserve Estimates (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.