Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Wednesday roundup (05-13-15)

Oil glut worsens as OPEC market-share battle just beginning: IEA (Reuters)

Eurozone Economy Improves [Modestly], but Finland and Greece Stumble (The New York Times) Modest Eurozone Growth Keeps ECB Asset Purchase Program on Track: Growth figures not sufficient for supporting any kind of debate on tapering asset purchases, says economist (The Wall Street Journal)

EU Commission says Germany should invest, France must reform (Reuters)

Finland, Once a Eurozone Point of Pride, Is Now Faltering (The New York Times)

Tsipras calls emergency meeting as crisis-hit Greece plunges back into recession: Economy shrinks by 0.2pc in the first quarter of the year, as Leftist government maintains it wants an "honourable compromise" with creditors (The Telegraph) Greece Back in Recession as Bailout Impasse Drains Economy (Bloomberg) Greece Is Back In Recession; This Does Not Bode Well For A Debt Deal (Forbes)

Bank of England cuts forecasts, dims rate hike prospects (The Associated Press)

EU faults Britain over missed deficit targets (Agence France Presse)

Obama’s Fast-Track Trade Bill Not Dead Yet (Slate blogs) Obama trade bill revived after bipartisan deal sets new votes (The Washington Times) Sen. Warren: If Obama is confident about trade deal, he should make details public: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., is one of the more vocal opponents in the debate over granting President Obama fast-track authority on the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. Judy Woodruff talks to Warren about her concerns about transparency and how American workers may be hurt. (PBS)



Retail sales flat in April as gas savings continue to be pocketed: Purchases flatten out in April after spike in March (Marketwatch)

Fed said to have emergency plan to intervene if U.S. defaulted on debt (Reuters)

Student debt doesn't keep new grads from mortgages: Study (CNBC)

Elizabeth Warren's Next Crusade: Clamping Down On The Federal Reserve's 'Too Big To Fail' Bailouts (International Business Times)

Bee Die-Offs Second-Highest Ever in Past Year (Discovery) 42% of honeybee hives killed off in U.S. last year: 2nd highest loss rate in 9 years [the highest being two years ago] (The Associated Press)

Drilling begins 3 miles from epicenter of BP oil spill (The Associated Press)

Trican Declines After Cutting Workforce [by 2,000 workers], Suspending Dividend (Bloomberg)

McDermott cuts nearly 1700 jobs (Offshore Engineer)

Fortescue to cut hundreds of jobs [= about 700] despite partial rebound in iron ore price: Andrew Forrest says his company is still making profits but took another swipe at rivals BHP and Rio Tinto for raising output when prices were low (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.

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