Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Wednesday roundup (12-31-14)

Europe's Chief Economist Says Deflation Is Coming (The Business Insider)

Can Greece really defy austerity?: The Big Question: Now that Greece has called a snap election, which may well see Left-wing Syriza coming to power with a promise to repeal austerity, Alexandre Afonso asks whether this really can be done (The Telegraph)

Greek expulsion from the euro would demolish EMU’s contagion firewall: Should EMU leaders choose to cut off liquidity support for the Greek banking system they might find that their contagion defences are a fiction by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

The new spectre haunting Europe: Greece's Syriza (France24)

Fed should heed market view of deflation risk: Minneapolis Fed chief (Reuters)

Greenspan Throws a Wet Blanket on Hopes for Growth Breakout (Bloomberg)

[UK's] City Link announces 2,356 job losses after rescue talks fail (The BBC) Administrators of collapsed courier firm City Link make 2,350 workers redundant after rescue bid fails (The Daily Mail)

Oil company lays off 700 in Bakersfield (The Bakersfield Californian)

     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, 12-31-14)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. ["'I think that we're hoping for the numbers to stay below 600,000, and not until we get below 500,000 can we be more certain that there is an economic recovery,' said Linda Duessel, market strategist at Federated Investors in Pittsburgh." (Reuters)]

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 people who applied for U.S. unemployment benefits jumped by 17,000 in the final week of December to the highest level since Thanksgiving, but the overall level of layoffs and firings remains extremely low amid a sharp uptick in job creation." (Marketwatch)

Jobless Claims in U.S. Decreased in 2014 to Lowest in 14 Years (Bloomberg)

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.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Tuesday roundup (12-30-14)

How the world fell back into economic meltdown: 2014 in charts: From Russia's economic collapse, the threat of deflation, and another year of record low interest rates, here's how crisis beset the world economy once again (The Telegraph)

Europe deflation fears back after weak Spain, Greece data: Fears of deflation in the euro zone were heightened once again on Tuesday, after both Spain and Greece reported worse-than-expected price declines. (CNBC)

The ECB Is Pulling Out The Big Guns Against Deflation (Agence France Presse)

The euro story is still unfolding: The development of the euro crisis has always involved the interaction of three elements: Politics, markets and economics [The Financial Times via] (GulfNews)

Snap elections will be decisive for Greece’s eurozone future, says Samaras: PM’s comments come as rating agency says prolonged political uncertainty could increase risks to country’s creditworthiness (The Guardian) Greece: End of austerity?: Snap elections raise concerns that far-Left opposition could go back on multi-billion bailout deals. (Al Jazeera) [versus] The Question Hanging Over Greek Debt (The New York Times blogs)

One in 10 over-45s [in the UK] ‘to retire in debt’ due to spiralling house prices, low wage growth and demise of final salary pensions (The Daily Mail)

It's Official — Venezuela Has Plunged Into Recession (Agence France Presse)

[In the United States,] Final tally: Taxpayers auto bailout loss $9.3B (The Detroit Free Press)

Once the world's biggest mall [Randall Park Mall on the edge of Cleveland] is being torn down today (CNNMoney)

     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, December 29, 2014

Monday roundup (12-29-14)

Quote of the Day: "Would we survive another big financial crisis which could yet come? I don’t think we are yet at the point where we can be confident that the banking system would be entirely safe." -- Mervyn King, former governor of The Bank of England (in classic British understatement?) (The Daily Mail)

Could the Great Oil Price Crash of 2014 Be a Disaster in the Making?: The sharp drop in the value of oil in the second half of 2014 is just another aftershock of the financial crisis. by Christopher Whalen (The National Interest)

Oil Prices Fall, Rig Count Drops, Oil Companies Employment to decline (Calculated Risk blog)

Greek impasse forces early elections and fears of a return to euro crisis (The Washington Post) Greece's Leading Prime Ministerial Candidate Could Throw Europe Back Into Crisis (The Business Insider) This Greek tragedy could end in utter ruin: Victory for the Left and a chaotic exit from the eurozone would lead to turmoil across Europe (The Telegraph) Greece comes back to haunt eurozone as anti-Troika rebels scent power: Greece's finance minister warns ECB could “strangle the Greek economy in a split second” if it cuts off life-support for banks. by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Russian recession fears as economy shrinks for first time in five years: Falling oil prices, sanctions and collapsing rouble take toll, with GDP in November 0.5% lower than in same month year ago (The Guardian)

China economy seen to grow slowest in a decade next year (Channel NewsAsia)

Russian Roulette: Taxpayers [in the United States] Could Be on the Hook for Trillions in Oil Derivatives by Ellen Brown (The Huffington Post)

Governor Christie has final say on bill that will privatize water without public oversight (Daily Kos) A New Jersey bid to privatize water without public votes: If approved by Gov. Christie, bill would give municipalities with aging pipes right to sell systems to private companies (Al Jazeera)

Bankruptcy looms for desperate Cleveland suburb (The Columbus Dispatch)

Shutdown of Vermont Yankee will eliminate [550] jobs, resulting in ‘very, very sharp hit’ on region’s economy (The Recorder of Greenfield, Massachusetts)

     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, December 28, 2014

Sunday roundup (12-28-2014)

The [world's] ultra wealthy get $2 trillion wealthier (CNNMoney)

Challenging party games ahead as Greece threatens second debt crisis: The threat of a another wave of debt problems in Europe and the issue of equality – or lack of it – will be high on the agenda at home and abroad next year (The Guardian)

Greece on brink of new ‘catastrophe’ as PM battles to avert snap elections: Antonis Samaras in desperate bid to prevent poll that could bring anti-austerity party Syriza into power (The Guardian) Eurozone faces new threat of Greek tragedy as struggles in the banking sector, ongoing political uncertainty and seismic stock market shifts continue to dampen recovery (This is Money)

Ukraine's parliament approves austerity laws needed for draft budget (Reuters)

The Secret Word: Deflation (LinkedIn)

     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, December 27, 2014

Saturday roundup (12-27-14)

Schaeuble warns a new Greek govt must respect austerity vows (Reuters)

Japan Approves $29 Billion Spending Package to Boost Economy (Bloomberg) Japan govt approves $29 bln stimulus spending, impact in doubt (Reuters)

[In the United States,] Some States See Budgets at Risk as Oil Price Falls (The New York Times)

Elizabeth Warren: can this scourge of Wall Street make it to the White House?: The Democrats’ new darling is, like Barack Obama, a former law professor and a gifted orator whose speeches address America’s ‘rigged’ economy. Hopes are rising that the senator will run for president (The Observer)

Unofficial Problem Bank list unchanged at 401 Institutions, Q4 2014 Transition Matrix (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, December 26, 2014

Friday roundup (12-26-14)

Russia forecasts economic slump as bailed-out bank gets more funds (Reuters) Russia's Finance Minister sees economy shrinking 4 percent in 2015 (Reuters) Russia scales up Trust Bank bailout as crisis bites (Reuters)

Japan's Prime Minister Abe plans billions in stimulus to fight recession as vital signs weaken (The Associated Press)

Japan’s savings rate turns negative for first time (The BBC)

GRANTHAM: 'US Fracking Is A Very Large Red Herring' (The Business Insider)

Rise in Loans Linked to Cars Is Hurting Poor (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.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Thursday roundup (Dec. 25, 2014)

Saudi Arabia projects big deficit in 2015 after crude oil price drop (Agence France Presse)

Dear Dr. Yellen, Forget About Inflation, Deflation Is The Real Concern (Seeking Alpha 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.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Wednesday roundup (12-24-14)

Europe’s Make-or-Break Year (Project Syndicate)

The real reason for Washington's derivatives gift to banks (The Los Angeles Times)

U.S. minimum wage hikes to affect 1,400-plus Walmart stores (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, 12-24-14)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. ["'I think that we're hoping for the numbers to stay below 600,000, and not until we get below 500,000 can we be more certain that there is an economic recovery,' said Linda Duessel, market strategist at Federated Investors in Pittsburgh." (Reuters)]

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 people who applied for U.S. unemployment-insurance benefits fell by 9,000 to 280,000 in the week that ended Dec. 20, , the U.S. Labor Department reported." (Marketwatch)

Jobless claims fall 9,000 to 7-week low (The Associated Press)

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.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Tuesday roundup (12-23-14)

Oil fall adds to ECB’s deflation worries: Bundesbank conservatism constrains Draghi’s ability to address problem (The Financial Times)

Could a Greek Christmas Crisis Threaten the Euro?: While the world enjoys its Christmas and New Year holidays, Greek MPs will be determining whether we return to our desks to find a new crisis threatening the Euro (Morningstar)

Syriza’s chief economist plots a radical Greek evolution [with the intent of keeping the country] within the eurozone: For John Milios, seen as the most hardline of Alexis Tsipras’s advisers, the country’s humanitarian crisis is the top priority (The Guardian)

Russian PM Admits 'Risk Of Deep Recession': Dmitry Medvedev issues the stark warning as the country continues efforts to shore up its flagging currency. (SkyNews)

Ex-minister Kudrin warns of "full-fledged crisis" in Russia (Reuters)

S&P places Russia on CreditWatch Negative (CNBC)

16 Russian banks at risk of ratings cut by Moody's (CNBC)

Durable Goods Orders in U.S. Unexpectedly Fell 0.7% in November (Bloomberg)

New-Home Sales in U.S. Unexpectedly Fall to Four-Month Low (Bloomberg)

Coca Cola to cut up to 2,000 jobs after Christmas (The Independent) Coca-Cola Is Reportedly Cutting Jobs, Canceling Parties, And Telling Executives To Stop Taking Limos (The Business Insider) Coca-Cola Disconnects Voice Mail at Headquarters (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.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Monday roundup (12/22/14)

Ruble crisis may spell financial disaster for Europe (Russia Today)

Russia to bail out Trust Bank with up to $530 million (Reuters)

Russia in recession in 2015, ruble to stay pressured: Reuters poll (Reuters)

China quietly joins Asia's currency wars to avert deflation: China is exposed like a sore thumb as countries devalue on all sides, from Russia, to Japan, Indonesia and Malaysia by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

[In the United States,] Sales of existing homes hit six-month low, puzzling analysts (The Washington 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, December 21, 2014

Sunday roundup (12-21-14)

The Baltic Dry Index Has Never Crashed This Fast Post-Thanksgiving (ZeroHedge blog)

Not Quite Checkmate for the Bundesbank: Germany Appears Defeated Over QE, But Might Still Dictate Terms of Surrender (The Wall Street Journal)

In the next act of the eurozone’s economic drama, keep a close eye on Spain: Deflation need not be the end of the world if it is the result of structural changes that boost optimism, writes Stephanie Flanders (The Financial Times)

U.S. gas prices fall to lowest since May 2009: Lundberg survey (Reuters) Early gift: Gas below $2 at some stations in 24 states [The News-Leader of Springfield, Missouri, via:] (USAToday) The Guardian view on falling oil prices: mixed blessing: Sinking crude costs used to spell rising prosperity automatically. Today the economics, and the ecology, are a good deal more complex than that (The Guardian)

     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, December 20, 2014

Saturday roundup (12-20-14)

Banks win Fed extension on Volcker Rule provision (The Los Angeles Times) Fed’s Delay of Parts of Volcker Rule Is Another Victory for Banks (The New York Times blogs) Volcker critical of delays in rule (The Associated Press)

Former KC Fed president says Congress wrong to allow swaps in insured banks (The Kansas City Star blogs)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 401 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, December 19, 2014

Friday roundup (12-19-14)

OPEC States Scramble to Avoid Debt Default (Cliff Küle’s Notes blog)

ECB considers making weaker euro zone states bear more quantitative easing risk - sources (Reuters)

All the Eurozone wants for Christmas is a new Greek President (Fortune)

Kocherlakota, in strong Fed rebuke, says FOMC taking 'unacceptable' inflation risks [= risks that could lead to deflation] (CNBC) It may be time to take deflation seriously (The StarTribune of Minneapolis, Minnesota)



U.S. Declares Bank and Auto Bailouts Over, and Profitable (The New York Times)

Elizabeth Warren allies march outside Citi: 'Break big banks' (CNNMoney)

Regulators close small bank in Minnesota, bringing number of US bank failures to 18 in 2014 (The Associated Press) Northern Star Bank of Mankato MN had a troubled assets ratio of 137.4 percent. (BankTracker) Northern Star Bank, Mankato, MN, Becomes 18th Bank Failure of 2014 (Problem Bank List)

     The aim of this blog is to show (mostly from reports in mainstream respected news sources) that there is reason to believe that both the United States and the global economies remain fragile in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008 and that a number of threats 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, December 18, 2014

Thursday roundup (12-18-14)

French parliament passes deficit-cutting 2015 budget (Reuters)

A Greek exit would be a big deal for Europe (The Hill blogs) Nine charts showing why Greece has to leave the euro: The Greek tragedy has yet to morph into a recovery. Here are the numbers that prove it remains shackled by monetary union (The Telegraph)

America's Wealth Gap at Record Level: New figures from the Federal Reserve show the rich in America pulling away from other income groups. (Bloomberg)

11 trillion gallons of rain still needed to end Calif. drought (CNN)

Venezuela Default Expected Next Year as Oil Tumbles, SocGen Says (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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 12-18-14)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. ["'I think that we're hoping for the numbers to stay below 600,000, and not until we get below 500,000 can we be more certain that there is an economic recovery,' said Linda Duessel, market strategist at Federated Investors in Pittsburgh." (Reuters)]

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 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted 289,000 in the seven days ended Dec. 13, the Labor Department said Thursday." (Marketwatch)

Jobless Claims in U.S. Decrease to Lowest Level in Six Weeks (Bloomberg)

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, December 17, 2014

Wednesday roundup (12-17-14)

Deflation Stalks the Globe (BloombergView) A Global Disease Called Deflation (The Huffington Post)

Europe's Deflation Struggle Intensifies (Dow Jones Newswires)

Greek election uncertainty fuels concerns over eurozone stability: Ballot of 300 MPs fails to yield clear result, with two rounds left to choose a winner and avoid eurozone instability (The Guardian) To save itself, Greece must exit the euro: A Syriza election victory threatens default and disorderly exit from the euro for Greece. This would be a disaster for all. But done properly, the reintroduction of sovereign currencies within the eurozone would provide a bright new beginning (The Telegraph)

Russian economy stagnates in November - on track to recession in 2015 (Reuters) Going over the edge: A deep recession is now a certainty for Russia in 2015. Things could get much worse (The Economist) Russia’s Economic Pain Is Just Beginning, Bank Group [Institute of International Finance] Warns (The Wall Street Journal blogs) Russia Is So Screwed (Slate blogs)

Russia Seen Spending Further $70 Billion to Fight Ruble Rout (Bloomberg)

Wrecking Russia’s economy could be a disaster for the west: It’s sheer folly to hope that the country is destabilised and Vladimir Putin overthrown. We’ve no idea what the outcome would be (The Guardian) Stop Celebrating the Ruble's Collapse. Cheap Oil Could Come Back to Bite the American Economy (The New Republic)

EU says Ukraine needs $15 billion, has limited ability to help (Reuters)

Economic Fears May Push Russia Into Ukraine Deal (The New York Times)

US consumer inflation posts largest decline in six years (Reuters)

U.S. factory activity growth at 11-month low in December: Markit (Reuters)

Fed Will Implement QE4 in Early 2016: Rickards (Bloomberg)



Banks loosen lending standards to levels seen before financial crisis (The Los Angeles Times)

Congress Lit the Fuse to the Next Financial Disaster (The Huffington Post)

Elizabeth Warren: An Honest and Courageous Woman in a Cowardly and Centrist Democratic Party (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.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Tuesday roundup (12-16-14)

Russia risks Soviet-style collapse as rouble defence fails: 'What is happening is a nightmare that we could not even have imagined a year ago,' says Russia's central bank by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

U.S. Won’t Ease Sanctions to Prevent Economic Meltdown in Russia: As the ruble falters, American officials are watching to see how Vladimir Putin responds. (Bloomberg) Obama Backs Bill Imposing New Sanctions on Russia (The Associated Press)

Russia has just lost the economic war with the west: The interest rate hike’s failure to halt a freefalling rouble means Russia is facing a perfect storm, only part of which is a full-blown currency crisis (The Guardian blogs) Here's Why the Russian Ruble Is Collapsing (Bloomberg) The Collapse of Putin's Economic System (Bloomberg) Who loses if Russia implodes? (CNNMoney)

Russian rouble in free-fall despite shock 17% rate rise (The BBC) Russian ruble suffers steepest drop in 16 years (Reuters) Russian ruble falls to historic lows, while pressure increases on Putin (The Associated Press) Russian Rate Jump Fails to Stop Ruble Crash (Bloomberg)

World set to end year in brittle economic state [with "events in Russia" being the "most eye-catching."] (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, December 15, 2014

Monday roundup (12-15-14)

Oil Prices Fall to Fresh Lows: Concerns Over Glut of Oil Outweigh News of Reduced Libyan Exports (The Wall Street Journal) Oil prices as an indicator of global economic conditions (Econobrowser)

Russia’s Central Bank Abruptly Raises Key Rate to 17% (The New York Times) Russia heading for crash as ruble plummets (CNNMoney) Russian crisis turns systemic as rouble crashes 13pc: Russia's central bank is letting the rouble plunge as the path of least resistance, but this is becoming dangerous as fear spreads by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph) [Later ...] Russia hikes interest rates to 17pc to stop rouble collapse: Russia's central bank makes shock move just days after raising rates to 10.5pc, after rouble crashes 13pc against the dollar by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard et. al. (The Telegraph)

Russian Industrial Output Unexpectedly Drops Amid Ruble Debacle (Bloomberg)

Malta CenBank governor sounds [Eurozone] deflation concern (Reuters)

Belgium sees massive strike against austerity measures: Union-led strikes have cut air and rail service to Belgium, with the anti-austerity action set to affect schools, businesses and government offices across the country. The strike targets the new government's budget plan. (Deutsche Welle)

The EU's Day of Reckoning: Italy Is Too Big to Bail Out (The National Interest)

Polish Deflation Tops Estimate as Rate-Cut Rift Sharpens (Bloomberg) Poland Deflation Continues at Same Pace in November (Dow Jones Newswires)

Bulgaria annual deflation speeds up to 0.6% in November (The Sofia Globe)

President Obama and Congress Just Gave Your Savings Account to JPMorgan (TruthDig) Savings accounts are at risk as long as JP Morgan CEO gets everything he wants: The CEO of America’s biggest bank, JP Morgan, appears to have Washington at his beck and call but is his push to repeal a key financial safeguard a step too far? (The Guardian) Dodd-Frank Budget Fight Proves Democrats Are a Bunch of Stuffed Suits by Matt Taibi (Rolling Stone) Wall Street’s Win on Swaps Rule Shows Washington Resurgence [= Shows the Resurgence of Wall Street in Washington] (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, December 14, 2014

Sunday roundup (12-14-14)

Rapid fall in oil prices may portend global recession (The New York Post) Tumbling oil could take thousands of jobs with it (CNNMoney)

Greece Is Still The Eurozone's Achilles Heel (Forbes)

Faced with few options, Japan gives Prime Minister Abe more time to fix the economy (The Washington Post) HSBC fears horrible end to Japan's QE blitz as Abe wins landslide: The warning came as Mr Abe won a sweeping  victory in Japan’s snap elections over the weekend, consolidating his power in the Diet and giving him a further mandate for deep reforms. by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Many indebted students [in the United States] are clueless about loans (CBSMoneywatch)

The Speech That Could Make Elizabeth Warren the Next President of the United States (The Huffington Post) ["Senator Elizabeth Warren lost her battle over the government spending bill. But she ended the week a winner."] (CNNMoney)

     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, December 13, 2014

Saturday roundup (12-13-14)

The Global Bankers’ Coup: Bail-In and the Shadowy Financial Stability Board by Ellen Brown (The Web of Debt blog)

The Financialized-Oil Dominoes Are Toppling by Charles Hugh Smith (Of Two Minds blog)

Europe may have a big, fat Greek problem (Marketwatch)

[United States] Senators avert government shutdown, pass temporary spending measure (The Washington Post) Fight over stopgap spending bill leaves GOP senators livid (The Los Angeles Times)

The median wealth for whites in the US is nearly $142,000. For blacks, it's $11,000. (Vox)

Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 406 Institutions (Calculated Risk blog)

Organic-Farming Boom Stretches Certification System: USDA Farms Out Inspections, but Thoroughness Is Questioned (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.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Friday roundup (12-12-14)

Euro-Area Industrial Output Grows a Less-Than-Forecast 0.1% (Bloomberg)

Italian finance minister: Europe must act now to avoid stagnation: Pier Carlo Padoan attacks European Investment Bank for worrying more about its credit rating than about growth (The Guardian)

Europe Is Following Italy Into A Minefield Of Permanent Austerity And Debt Crises (The Business Insider)

Fitch lowers France's rating on its debt, deficit and budgeting issues to 'AA' (The Associated Press)

General strike hits Italy as unions protest labor reforms, austerity: Trade unions in Italy are staging an eight-hour general strike in protest against labor market reforms and austerity measures. The country is experiencing high unemployment, particularly among the young. (Deutsche Welle)

China’s Slowdown Deepens as Factory Output Growth Wanes: Economy (Bloomberg)

Americans are 40% poorer than before the recession (Marketwatch) Wealth Gap Between Races Widened During Recession, Study Says (National Public Radio blogs) Wealth inequality has widened along racial, ethnic lines since end of Great Recession (Pew Research Center)

Even amid recovery, state budgets bleed red ink (The Washington Post blogs)

$1.1tn US budget deal imperiled by revolt over taxpayer net for risky bank trades (The Guardian) ‘Enough is enough’: Elizabeth Warren’s fiery attack comes after Congress weakens Wall Street regulations (The Washington Post blogs) Elizabeth Warren, David Vitter Make Last-Minute Press Against Reid On 'Wall Street Giveaway' (The Huffington Post) Sen. GOP senator joins foes of Wall Street provision in spending bill (The Hill) Warren urges Republicans to oppose bailout provision in government funding bill (Youtube)



Memo To Citigroup CEO Michael Corbat: Does Your Crony Capitalist Plunder Know No Shame? (David Stockman's Contra Corner blog)

Don’t Repeal Swaps Push-Out Requirements (Section 716 of Dodd-Frank) by Simon Johnson (Baseline Scenario blog)

Bair on Wall Street's mistaken power play: Former FDIC chair Sheila Bair discusses issues adding to the cynicism and distrust of big banks. (CNBC)

The Week Elizabeth Warren Decided to Run for President (The New Republic) Warren makes her mark (The Hill)

Halliburton to cut 1,000 jobs (Houston Business Journal)

     The aim of this blog is to show (mostly from reports in mainstream respected news sources) that there is reason to believe that both the United States and the global economies remain fragile in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008 and that a number of threats 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, December 11, 2014

Thursday roundup (12-11-14)

Cheap Loans From E.C.B. Get Tepid Response Among Eurozone Banks (The New York Times) Another Disappointment Means ECB Is Almost Out Of Tools To Help The Eurozone (Forbes) ECB Case for QE Boosted by Muted Long-Term Loan Take-Up (Bloomberg

France Is About To Plunge Into Deflation (The Business Insider) French core inflation turns negative, points to deflation risk (Reuters) France drifts into deflation as ECB 'pea-shooter' falls short: The Bank of Italy warns that any further falls in prices at this stage could have 'extremely grave consequences for economies with very high public debt levels' by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

As unemployment keeps rising, French government to unveil new plan to encourage hiring (The Associated Press

Year after reform, French pension system faces new deficit risk (Reuters

Nearly One in Five Americans Say They'll Be in Debt Forever (NBCNews

Elizabeth Warren is really angry about Dodd-Frank change (CNNMoney

Catholic Health to cut 1,500, or 1.7% of jobs, at end of January [Dec. 5] (The Denver Post

Dutch firm SBM Offshore to cut 1,200 jobs worldwide (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, 12-11-14)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000. ["'I think that we're hoping for the numbers to stay below 600,000, and not until we get below 500,000 can we be more certain that there is an economic recovery,' said Linda Duessel, market strategist at Federated Investors in Pittsburgh." (Reuters)]

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 claims for regular state unemployment-insurance benefits inched down by 3,000 to 294,000 in the week that ended Dec. 6, the U.S. Labor Department reported." (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, December 10, 2014

Wednesday roundup (12-10-14)

OPEC cuts 2015 demand forecast for its oil to lowest in a decade (Reuters)

Think [Global] Central Banks Are Done? Stimulus to Accelerate in 2015 (Bloomberg)

New G20 Rules: Cyprus-style Bail-ins to Hit Depositors AND Pensioners [Dec. 1] (The Web of Debt blog) Ellen Brown - 5 Big Banks will Survive Next Financial Calamity - Everybody Else Bankrupt (Youtube)



Two Italian parties calls for exit from eurozone (Agence France Presse)

Italy Leads Europe in Citizen Worries About Public Debt (Bloomberg) [Meanwhile ...] Italian Banks’ Sovereign Debt Holdings Rise to Record (Bloomberg)

Thousands protest against Irish water austerity: Dublin promised to directly charge households for water as part of its EU-IMF bailout, but a mass campaign against the fees has sprung up ahead of the first bills due in 2015. (Agence France Presse)

China Deflation Risk Deepens Signaling Room for Easing: Economy (Bloomberg)

Post-recession population growth slows [in the United States], estimates show (USAToday)

Detroit Is Out of Bankruptcy, but Not Out of the Woods (The New York Times)

California’s Drought Is So Bad That Some Communities Are Trucking In Their Water: If the drought continues, farmers and residents may have to abandon some of the richest agricultural land in the country. (The Nation)

Qualcomm cuts 600 jobs worldwide: San Diego wireless giant confirms 300 of the layoffs are in California (The San Diego Union-Tribune) Qualcomm laying off about 600 employees globally: Cuts at the mobile-chips giant come as it faces a handful of ongoing government investigations into its business practices. (CNET)

Boeing to lay off 561 employees in Southern California (The Los Angeles Times)

Drugmaker Pierre Fabre to cut over 500 jobs in France by 2016 (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.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Tuesday roundup (12-09-14)

Bank of America sees $50 oil as Opec dies: "Our biggest worry is the end of the liquidity cycle. The Fed is done. The reach for yield that we have seen since 2009 is going into reverse”, said Bank of America. by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph) Ten Reasons Why A Sustained Drop In Oil Prices Could Be Catastrophic (OilPrice)

One Chart Shows How The Oil Slump Could Plunge Europe Into Deflation (The Business Insider)

ECB's Praet says [Europe's central bank] would have cut interest rates at last meeting if possible (Reuters)

The Eurozone Can't Have The Needed QE Because Draghi Can't Convince The Germans (Forbes)

Is it time to worry about Greece and the Eurozone again? (The Straits Times)

IMF's Lagarde prods Italy on banks, labour, justice reform (Reuters)

Japan Weighs Up to 3 Trillion Yen Extra Budget to Boost Economy (Bloomberg)

Fitch warns it could cut Japan's A+ credit rating (Marketwatch)

[US Government] Shutdown Averted: Lawmakers Agree on $1.1 Trillion Spending Bill (NBCWashington) Wall Street Seeks to Tuck Dodd-Frank Changes in Budget Bill (The New York Times blogs) Elizabeth Warren Joins Revolt Against Wall Street Deal In Government Shutdown Talks (The Huffington Post)

Elizabeth Warren: Put a lock on Wall Street’s revolving door (Politico)

[Global miner] Anglo American aims to cut about 60,000 jobs by 2017 (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, December 8, 2014

Monday roundup (12-08-14)

OECD: Eurozone at risk of slide into contraction (Marketwatch)

ECB's Nowotny says euro zone economy weakening massively (Reuters)

[And Before He Said That, It Was Already] Worse than the Great Depression (in Europe) (The Mess That Greenspan Made blog) Are We Reliving The 1930s? (Forbes)

Six triggers that could renew a eurozone crisis in 2015: Tensions in the eurozone's largest economies could pull the region apart next year, as a number of political risks could bubble over, according to Nordea (The Telegraph)

Greece to get two-month bailout extension - Eurogroup's Dijsselbloem (Reuters)

Euro zone ministers to tell Italy additional measures are needed - draft (Reuters)

For Russia, a perfect storm of economic woe looms (Marketwatch)

Ukraine Needs Second Bailout, Currency Reserves Drop to Critical Level; Another IMF Visit; Where's the Love? (Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis blog) IMF visits Ukraine for bailout talks (Reuters)

China faces more pressure as Nov imports shrink unexpectedly, exports slow (Reuters)

There Has Never Been A Greater Portion Of America Living On Food Stamps (ZeroHedge 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.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Sunday roundup (12-07-14)

There's A Troubling Level Of Fragility Hidden Beneath Market Bouyancy (Agence France Presse) Dollar surge endangers global debt edifice, warns BIS: Bank for International Settlements concerned about underlying health of world economy as dollar loans to emerging markets increase rapidly by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Bank on 'Super Mario' to give Europe a monetary jolt (Reuters)

Merkel Takes Tougher Line on Neighbors’ Plans [= Plans of France and Italy] in Deficit Fight (Bloomberg) Merkel says France and Italy must do more on reforms (Reuters) Italy and France hit back at Merkel over economic reforms call (Reuters)

UK banking system may double in size by 2050, says Bank of England [!!!]: Central bank’s report says there is no evidence of a strong link between banking sector size and the probability of a crisis [?!?!] (The Guardian)

Bank of England: half a million housebuyers face mortgage arrears: Homebuyers have an average mortgage debt of £83,000 plus unsecured loans of £8,000, typically earning £43,000 a year (The Guardian)

Japan's third-quarter economic contraction bigger than expected (Reuters) Japan Recession Deeper Than First Thought as Election Looms (Bloomberg)

The plight of the honeybee eludes simple solutions: Specialists at a Maine conference agree there are no easy answers for curing colony collapse disorder and other threats. (The Portland Press Herald of Portland, Maine)

     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, December 6, 2014

Saturday roundup (12-06-14)

Low Oil Prices ''Just Going to Reinforce Deflation Fears,'' said ECB Coene (The Dow Jones Newswires) Oil just plunged to Great-Recession levels (Marketwatch)

Why a Moscow meltdown could spread around the globe: Despite the relatively small size of the Russian economy, an economic crisis could still trigger problems worldwide (The Observer)

[In the United States,] Unofficial Problem Bank list declines to 407 Institutions (Calculated Risk blog)

Colorado Springs hospitals' parent organization to cut 1,500 jobs at end of January (The Colorado Springs Gazette of Colorado Springs, Colorado)

     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, December 5, 2014

Friday roundup (12-05-14)

Europe barely passes global bank rules test (Reuters)

Draghi's authority drains away as half ECB board joins mutiny: Draghi is right: the euro means a single government and a European superstate, and to pretend otherwise is intellectually infantile. by Ambrose Evans Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Growth forecast for German economy slashed in HALF after ECB keeps eurozone investors waiting for money-printing stimulus (This is Money)

S&P cuts Italy sovereign rating to BBB-, just above junk (Reuters)

George Osborne’s deficit reduction plan requires unprecedented binge in personal borrowing (The Independent)

Russian borrowing costs hit five-year high as recession looms: A cocktail of economic sanctions and falling oil prices have made a Russian recession likely, driving up the cost of government borrowing to 2009 levels (The Telegraph)

Seven years since the recession began: how America is faring (The Economist)

[New film entitled] 'Poverty Inc.' gives long lecture on the banking world (The Los Angeles Times)

California’s 'Hot Drought' Ranks Worst in at Least 1,200 Years (Bloomberg)

Catholic Health to cut 1,500, or 1.7% of jobs, at end of January (The Denver 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.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Thursday roundup (12-04-14)

ECB sharply cuts inflation and growth forecasts (Reuters)

European Central Bank Holds Benchmark Rates Unchanged (Reuters)

ECB Holds Fire Even As The Risk of Deflation Grows (Forbes) ECB paralyzed by split as irreversible deflation trap draws closer: 'It is now patently clear that Draghi lacks the crucial German support for launching full-blown QE' by Ambrose Evans Pritchard (The Telegraph)

ECB's Draghi: 'We don't need unanimity for QE' (CNBC) Draghi says will not allow dissenters to block possible ECB action (Reuters)

Deflation fears: Is Sweden the next Japan? (CNBC)

Euro zone mulls extending Greek bailout by six months, Athens refuses (Reuters)

Bank of England keeps interest rates on hold in December: Bank of England keeps interest rates at 0.5pc for 69th consecutive month (The Telegraph)

Bank of Russia warns weak ruble poses risk to financial stability [The Wall Street Journal via] (Marketwatch)

Ukraine currency, sovereign woes to push more and more firms into default (Reuters)

The U.K.’s “Mr. Austerity” [= Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne] Doubles Down (The New Yorker) A conspiracy of silence over the austerity ahead: The problem the Chancellor now faces is that, after almost five years of emphasising the need for tough choices, the public is inclined to think the work of austerity is done. It is not. (New Statesman)

More Americans are behind on car payments (CNNMoney)

Boehner vows to avoid government shutdown with help from Democrats (Reuters) House Republicans scramble to avoid a shutdown ahead of a Dec. 11 deadline (The Washington Post)

Glaxo to Cut 900 Jobs in North Carolina to Reduce Expenses (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.