Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Wednesday roundup (02-18-15)

How central banks have lost control of the world: From engaging in 'competitive easing' to provoking international currency wars, have we finally reached the limit of what monetary policy can achieve? Click on the countries below to find out (The Telegraph)

Draghi's Dangerous Bet: The Perils of a Weak Euro: The recent decision by the European Central Bank to open the monetary floodgates has weakened the euro and is boosting the German economy. But the move increases the threat of turbulence on the financial markets and could trigger a currency war. (Spiegel Online)

Europe looks to securitized debt to aid flagging economy (Reuters)

Greece to Propose Extension of European Union Bailout Program (The New York Times) Greece expected to seek loan extension from skeptical euro zone (Reuters) Greece confirms it will ask for bridging loan from eurozone partners: Leaked document suggests Athens remains committed to repealing some austerity measures attached to original bailout (The Guardian)

Extension of bailout program for Greece essential to avoid European debt crisis [The Yomiuri Shimbun via] (The Chicago Tribune)

Greece offers debt forgiveness to its poor (Agence France Presse)

ECB tightens pressure on Greece with cap on bank funding (Reuters)

Greek banks to run out of collateral in 14 weeks: JP Morgan (Reuters)

ECB risks crippling political damage if Greece forced to default: If Greece defaulted, the German people would discover instantly that a large sum of money committed without their knowledge and without a vote in the Bundestag had vanished by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard (The Telegraph)

Why the U.S. will have to bail out Greece (Marketwatch)

Portugal’s public debt reaches 224.5 billion euros in 2014 [= "between 127.9 percent and 128.7 percent of gross domestic product"] (macauhub)

Bank of England stands pat [on benchmark interest rate], but divisions emerge (Marketwatch) Differences emerge among Bank of England rate-setters in February (Reuters)

Why I have resigned from the Telegraph: The coverage of HSBC in Britain's Telegraph is a fraud on its readers. If major newspapers allow corporations to influence their content for fear of losing advertising revenue, democracy itself is in peril. by Peter Oborne (Open Democracy)

More stimulus expected as Japan exits recession (Agence France Presse)

US producer prices post record drop on tumbling energy costs (Reuters)

Growth in Slow Start as U.S. Factories Curb Output: Economy (Bloomberg)

Housing Starts Fall as U.S. Single-Family Projects Decline (Bloomberg)

Look for more energy deflation this year (CNBC)

FOMC Minutes: "Many participants ... inclined toward keeping the federal funds rate at its effective lower bound for a longer time" (Calculated Risk blog) Fed officials worried about hiking rates too soon - minutes (Reuters)

U.S. Household Debt Rises Slightly in to $11.83 Trillion (Dow Jones Newswires) Americans struggle to keep up with new borrowings (Marketwatch) Student loan debt piles up to $1.16 trillion: NY Fed (CNBC)

Interconnected Banks Pose the Greatest Threat to the U.S. Financial System (Cliff Küle’s Notes blog)

L.A.’s aging water pipes; a $1-billion dilemma (The Los Angeles Times)

     The aim of this blog is to show (mostly from reports in mainstream respected news sources) that there is reason to believe that both the United States and the global economies remain fragile in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008 and that a number of threats exist today that could, if they worsened, bring about economic depression -- not just a minor depression, but a depression worse than the Great Depression. Key threats include excessive risk-taking by financial firms, unchecked by effective regulation; the continued existence of "too big to fail" institutions; and most especially, the amassing of levels of public and private debt which could become unsustainable.

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