Thursday, May 25, 2017

Thursday roundup (05-24-2017)

'Putin will be thrilled': Former NATO ambassadors say Trump just dealt 'a major blow' to the alliance (The Business Insider) The Slight Heard 'Round the World: Trump's rude behavior at the NATO summit showcases the disrespect he reserves for our allies. (US News & World Report)

Why China’s Growing Debt Load Worries the World (The New York Times)

[In the United States,] GOP turns gloomy over Obamacare repeal: Senate Republicans leave for recess uncertain they can craft a plan that improves on the House bill and gets 50 votes. (Politico) GOP senators say tough report complicates health care bill (The Washington Post)

[Presidential Son-in-Law] Jared Kushner Now Under FBI Scrutiny in Russia Probe, Say Officials: NBC (NBCNews) Sources: Kushner Under Scrutiny By FBI as Part of Russia Investigation (NBC Nightly News)



Former Clinton Lawyer Thinks Trump Is Innocent of Criminal Activity [or more accurately, he says that he does not "see any evidence of any criminal intent"] (TownHall)

Appeals Court Will Not Reinstate Trump’s Revised Travel Ban (The New York Times)

US Consumer is De-leveraging [Mortgage Debt] (The Big Picture 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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 05-25-17)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000, according to 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 rose by 1,000 to 234,000 in the seven days stretching from May 14 to May 20, the government 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, May 24, 2017

Wednesday roundup (05-24-2017)

Eurozone ‘still fragile’ despite growth spurt, warns European Central Bank (The Telegraph)

Goodbye cars? Why Europe’s cities are cleaning up their act: Across Europe cities are taking urgent steps to cut rising levels of air pollution from congested urban areas. (JLL Real Views)

UK household debt to hit a record £15,000 as wages stagnate: Families are increasingly turning to credit cards and payday loans to pay bills, says TUC. (International Business Times)

China's rising debt prompts Moody's downgrade (USAToday) China’s Addiction to Debt Now Threatens Its Growth (The New York Times)

[In the United States,] 23 million fewer people would have insurance under GOP health-care bill, CBO says (CNBC) Obamacare replacement could make costs soar for many sick people and those over 64 (CNBC)

Trump official in charge of food stamps departs from Trump’s plan to gut the program (The Washington Post)

Jeff Sessions said to have not disclosed meetings with Russian ambassador when applying for security clearance (CNBC)

Why The Russia Investigation Matters And Why You Should Care (National Public Radio)

5 moments that show Trump isn’t about to get any help from the intelligence community (The Washington Post)

America’s most successful companies are killing the economy: Winner-take-all companies, including Alphabet and Wal-Mart, are driving down wages and destroying communities (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.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Tuesday roundup (05-23-2017)

State bailout of Italian banks could re-ignite 'doom loop' concerns: S&P Global (Reuters)

Britain Raises Threat Level to ‘Critical,’ Says ‘Further Attack May Be Imminent’ (NBCNews) US leak of Manchester attacker's name strikes new blow to intelligence sharing: Naming of Salman Abedi by ‘US officials’ hours before it was announced by UK authorities is latest in series of leaks that may damage credibility with allies (The Guardian)

The day China’s version of the Lehman crisis explodes: An extraordinary expansion of personal debt poses a major risk to the world's second-largest economy (The Japan Times)

[United States] Lawmakers Declare President Trump’s Budget Proposal ‘Dead on Arrival’ (NBCNews) Trump's budget is facing massive blowback in Congress — and Republicans are some of the loudest complainers (The Business Insider) Face it, Trump voters — you got played (USAToday)

CIA director alerted FBI to pattern of contacts between Russian officials and Trump campaign associates (The Washington Post) Ex-CIA chief: Worries grew of Trump campaign contacts to Russia (Reuters)

The Questions About Obstruction Now Spread to White House Staff: Reports that presidential aides asked senior intelligence officials to help shut down the FBI investigation put those staffers in legal jeopardy. (The Atlantic)

Senate Intel panel issues subpoenas to Flynn businesses (The Hill)

Trump retains Marc Kasowitz as private attorney for Russia probe: reports (Reuters) Trump’s Longtime Lawyer Is Defending Russia’s Biggest Bank: Marc E. Kasowitz, who has represented Donald Trump for more than 15 years, was recently named a lead attorney in a federal civil lawsuit against Sberbank, which is majority-owned by the Russian government. (BuzzFeed)

‘RussiaGate’ Has Become a Catastrophic Failure of Leadership — and a Debacle From Which the Trump Presidency Will Not Recover: The Trump-Russia scandal has metastasized quickly and destructively. (Moyers & Company)

The Looming Retail Bailout (Forbes)

GM to cut 600 South Africa jobs by July as it pulls out of country (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, May 22, 2017

Monday roundup (05-22-2017)

Eurozone WILL shrink and collapse: Shock report reveals what business leaders REALLY think: MORE than half of European business leaders expect the eurozone to shrink or collapse in coming years, according to a new report. (The Express)

Eurozone and Greece Fail to Agree Bailout Deal: The eurozone's top official says there has not yet been an agreement to give Greece the next batch of bailout cash it needs before a summer repayment bum. (The Associated Press) Euro zone ministers eye Greek debt deal with IMF, new loans decision in June (Reuters)

The Lights Are Going Out in the Middle East (The New Yorker)

[In the United States,] White House Moves to Block Ethics Inquiry Into Ex-Lobbyists on Payroll (The New York Times) Ethics Office Blasts Trump Refusal to Disclose Lobby Waivers: The Trump administration is pushing back on an effort by the Office of Government Ethics to force the disclosure of waivers issued to ex-lobbyists in the administration. (The Associated Press)

Trump asked intelligence chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence (The Washington Post)

Flynn ‘Lied to Investigators’ About Russia Trip, Says Top House Dem (NBCNews) Chris Christie: I warned Trump about Flynn (CNN)

Leakers who revealed Israel as intelligence source did far more damage than Trump (The Washington Post)

Trump Drama Imperils GOP Legislative Agenda (NBCNews)

America's safety net is at risk from Trump's budget ax (CNNMoney)

Where Both the ACA and AHCA Fall Short, and What the Health Insurance Market Really Needs (The Harvard Business Review)

Loss-making Cathay Pacific makes biggest job cuts in 20 years [cutting 600 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.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sunday roundup (05-21-2017)

Greece's Bailout Review Stalls as Creditors Debate Debt Relief (Bloomberg) Euro zone, IMF to seek compromise on Greek debt deal Monday (Reuters)

A Quarter Of American Adults Can't Pay All Their Monthly Bills; 44% Have Less Than $400 In Cash (ZeroHedge blog)

Russia meeting revelation could trigger obstruction investigation: President Donald Trump’s Oval Office boast to Russian officials will almost certainly prompt a more immediate legal development. (Politico)

West Wing aides brace for big attorney bills: Longstanding conflict-of-interest restrictions limit White House employees from taking free or discounted legal advice, but aides who need lawyers have some options for getting help. (Politico)

Cathay Pacific to cut 600 jobs, including 190 management staff: SCMP (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.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Saturday roundup (05-20-2017)

Greece in fresh plea for debt relief (The Times of London)

Budget deficit [in the UK] to rise as economists predict failure in battle to balance books (The Telegraph)

China's economy loses momentum as policymakers clamp down on debt risks (Reuters)

[In the United States,] Trump-Russia Probe Now Includes Possible Cover-up, Congress Is Told (McClatchy Washington Bureau) Russia meeting revelation could trigger obstruction investigation: President Donald Trump’s Oval Office boast to Russian officials will almost certainly prompt a more immediate legal development. (Politico)

Sources: White House lawyers research impeachment (CNN)

White House looking at ethics rule to weaken special investigation: sources (Reuters) The President’s Power to End a Criminal Investigation (National Review)

Trump told aides firing Flynn was a mistake: The president has grown obsessed with defending the tough-talking 58-year-old general, repeatedly telling aides and associates in private that Flynn was a 'good man.' (Politico) [Meanwhile] Russian officials bragged they could use Flynn to influence Trump, sources say (CNN)

Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner 'person of interest in Russia investigation': A former FBI Director is heading the probe (The Independent)







‘People Here Think Trump Is a Laughingstock’: On the president’s ill-timed world tour. (Politico)

Nation on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown: A self-destructive president pushes Washington to the edge [editorial in conservative journal] (The Washington Free Beacon)

Tips for Leaders Meeting Trump: Keep It Short and Give Him a Win (The New York Times)

Student Debt’s Grip on the Economy [Editorial] (The New York Times) More Baby Boomers Are Drowning In Student Loan Debt–And No One Knows How Bad It Will Get: It’s not just a millennial problem. Student loan debt increased eightfold among Americans aged 60-64 in the last decade. Is anyone paying attention? (FastCompany)

A record 107 million Americans have car loans (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.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Friday roundup (05-19-2017)

Monte Paschi Bailout Plan [in Italy] Faces ECB Pushback on Capital Concerns (Bloomberg)

Italy is the biggest political risk in Europe: Analyst (CNBC)

[In the United States,] Russia probe reaches current White House official, people familiar with the case say (The Washington Post)

Trump Told Russians That Firing ‘Nut Job’ Comey Eased Pressure From Investigation (The New York Times)

Recapping a stunningly bad two weeks for the Trump White House (The Washington Post) Shields and Brooks on the barrage of Trump revelations: Syndicated columnist Mark Shields and New York Times columnist David Brooks join Judy Woodruff to the discuss the week’s news, including the appointment of a special counsel to lead the Russia probe at the Justice Department, reports that President Trump shared sensitive intelligence from another country with Russian diplomats and how all of it affects the running of the government. (PBSNewshour) (Youtube)



What Donald Trump Needs to Know About Bob Mueller and Jim Comey: The two men who could bring down the president have been preparing their entire lives for this moment. (Politico) 4 Reasons Why Robert Mueller Is an Ideal Special Counsel: By temperament and experience, Mueller represents an antidote to the Trump administration’s defiant stance against the laws of the land. (The Nation)

Trump said to favor move that could destabilize Obamacare (Politico) States get involved in lawsuit to shield Obamacare, saying Trump can’t be trusted (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.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Thursday roundup (05-18-2017)

Student Debt Rising Worldwide (YaleGlobal Online)

Greek Parliament Approves New Creditor-Demanded Cutbacks: Greece's government has secured parliamentary approval for a new batch of creditor-demanded measures that will impose further income losses on austerity-weary Greeks over the next three years but pave the way for a modest debt relief deal. (The Associated Press)

Japan's GDP growth masks stubborn deflation woes: Consumption rebounds but wages remain flat (Nikkei)

[United States] House May Be Forced to Vote Again on GOP's Obamacare Repeal Bill (Bloomberg)

Trump campaign had at least 18 undisclosed contacts with Russians: sources (Reuters)

Special counsel Robert Mueller is bad news for Trump’s embattled White House (The Washington Post) Advisers Urge Trump to Hire Outside Lawyer in Russia Inquiry (The New York Times)

Trump Gave Russians Secrets News Orgs Are Being Asked To Withhold (NBCNews)

The Latest Trump Controversy Shows Why Israel Is Not a Charity Case (National Review)

Donald Trump's White House Staffers Are Reportedly Putting Out Feelers for New Jobs (GQ)

‘People are in meltdown mode’: Inside the Republican donor class panic about Trump (McClatchy Washington Bureau)

Trump Says He Faces ‘Witch Hunt,’ Special Counsel ‘Hurts the Country’ (NBCNews)

The Relentless Bias Against Donald Trump (Medium)

Steven Mnuchin Says Breaking Up Commercial Banks and Investment Banks Would Be A Huge Mistake (Breitbart) 'Orwellian' and 'Bizarre': Warren Skewers Mnuchin for Doublespeak on Breaking Up Banks: While campaigning, Donald Trump frequently said he'd support the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall (Common Dreams) Elizabeth Warren GRILLS Steve Mnuchin On Glass-Steagall Reversal (Youtube)



Household Debt (The Big Picture blog)

400,000 were promised student loan forgiveness. Now they are panicking (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.

Is it a recovery yet? (Weekly report, 05-18-17)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000, according to 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.)

"So-called continuing claims, or the number of people collecting jobless benefits, fell by 22,000 to 1.9 million in early May, the government said Thursday. That’s the lowest level in 29 years." (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, May 17, 2017

Wednesday roundup (05-17-2017)

France: 'Unemployment is our biggest economic problem': France's President Emmanuel Macron has unveiled his new cabinet. It inherits a difficult legacy, in particular a sluggish economy dogged by years of high unemployment. DW's Doris Pundy reports from Paris. (DeutscheWelle)

Spain's public debt rises by 11 billion euros in March from February [Reuters via] (The Times of India) Spain's debt surges by almost £10BILLION with money owed more than 100 per cent of GDP: SPAIN'S public debt grew by an eye-watering €11.1billion (£9.51bn) in March to reach €1.12 trillion (£900billion). (The Express)

Greek Strikes Show Why Eurozone Debt Solution Will Never Work (Forbes)

Household debt [in the United States] tops 2008 peak (CNNMoney) Household Debt Makes a Comeback in the U.S. (The New York Times blogs)

Unless Trump changes, it'll be 'almost impossible' to get policies done: former Wells Fargo CEO ["I give him a D minus [as president], and I'm being an easy grader"] (CNBC)

White House Sources Suggest They Hate Their Jobs, Are Terrified of Being Fired (New York) White House on edge: 'We are kind of helpless': Recent scandals have left White House staff feeling besieged. (Politico)

Special counsel will take over FBI Russia campaign interference investigation [NBCNews via] (CNBC) Special counsel is named to take over investigation of Russia and Trump associates (The Los Angeles Times) Special Counsel Has Been Appointed for Russia Investigation (NBCNews)



Report: Trump’s Russia leak is ‘far worse than what is being reported’ (The Blaze)

CNN’s David Gergen: ‘I Think We’re in Impeachment Territory’ (Youtube)



Flynn, Manafort Are Key Figures in Russia Probe Mueller Will Lead [-- "multiple grand jury subpoenas and records requests have been issued" regarding them] (NBCNews)

Trump Team Knew Flynn Was Under Investigation Before He Came to White House (The New York Times)

Putin Offers to Provide a ‘Record’ of Trump’s Disclosures to Russian Envoys (The New York Times)

Alarm spreads among Hill Republicans over Comey scandal: Republicans are worried, even panicked, about their scandal-plagued president and what it could mean for the GOP agenda. (Politico)

The Trump Presidency Falls Apart: After an extraordinary 10 days, the tenure of the chief executive may have deteriorated beyond his ability to repair it. (The Atlantic) The downfall of President Donald Trump (The Los Angeles Times) Cal Thomas: Mr. Trump, you are poisoning your presidency (FoxNews)

The Criminal President? by Richard W. Painter and Norman L. Eisen, chief White House ethics lawyers for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, respectively (The New York Times)

Trump says 'no politician in history … has been treated worse' (ABCNews)

Forget Puerto Rico, What About U.S. States' Soaring Pension Debts? [Editorial] (Investors Business Daily)

[Connecticut] Gov. Malloy Revises Budget To Plug $2.5 Billion Deficit (WSHU)

Cisco revenue forecast disappoints; says to cut 1,100 more 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.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Tuesday roundup (05-16-2017)

Italy's debt rockets to record high and GDP growth slumps: THE EU has been plunged into further financial chaos after Italy's national debt soared to a record high. (The Express)

Greek debt relief up to ministers [in May 22 meeting] after euro zone, IMF officials fail to break deadlock (Reuters)

Israel demands explanation from White House after spat over Trump trip (FoxNews) Israel 'shocked' over Trump aide's Western Wall comments (CNN) Donald Trump's Visit to Israel: Everything You Need to Know (Haaretz)

US allies taken aback by intel sharing revelation (CNN)

Trump's disclosure endangered spy placed inside ISIS by Israel, officials say (ABCNews) Jake Tapper Rips Trump Officials For Revealing To Russia What They Told CNN To Conceal (Crooks and Liars blog)



Trump ISIS Leak to Russia Could End Israel-U.S. Intelligence Sharing (Newsweek) Israel Said to Be Source of Secret Intelligence Trump Gave to Russians (The New York Times) U.S. Intelligence Officials Reportedly Warn Israeli Counterparts Against Sharing Info With Trump Administration: Shared information could be leaked to Russia and onward to Iran, American officials implied to Israelis in closed meeting, saying Kremlin has 'leverages of pressure' over Trump, Ronen Bergman reports. (Haaretz)

The Terrible Cost of Trump's Disclosures: The consequences of the president’s reported divulgence of top-secret codeword information to the Russians are only beginning. (The Atlantic) This is why Trump’s loose tongue has compromised U.S. security (The Washington Post)

Republicans may be reaching their breaking point with Trump: There was a distinct shift among GOP lawmakers after news that the president allegedly pressured James Comey to drop an FBI investigation. (Politico) Hill Republicans alarmed by Trump disclosure to Russians: Sen. John McCain calls reports that the president disclosed highly classified information 'deeply disturbing.' (Politico) McCain: Trump Scandal Has Hit ‘Watergate Size’ (The Daily Beast) Republicans Demand More Detail on Trump’s Meeting With Russians (The New York Times) Lawmakers to Trump: Turn over transcript of meeting with Russians (The Washington Post)

9 times Trump criticized others for mishandling classified information (Politico)

[In Russia investigation, Republican Rep.] Jason Chaffetz Says He’s ‘Ready’ To Subpoena James Comey Memo: “If the memo exists, I need to see it and I need to see it right away.” (The Huffington Post) Comey Memo Says Trump Asked Him to End Flynn Investigation (The New York Times)

Former Bush official warns against serving in Trump admin (CNN) [Related commentary:] When will Republicans apologize to Hillary Clinton? ["How far will the fire have to spread before Republicans decide it is every GOP candidate for himself or herself — whatever the consequences for Trump?"; The Hill via] (FoxNews)

Following advice, potential FBI chiefs steer clear of job under Trump (Reuters)

Banks, making record piles of cash, plead for 'much-needed regulatory relief' (The Los Angeles Times)

Ford gets ready to cut [about 20,000] jobs (CNNMoney) Ford to cut North America, Asia salaried workers by 10 percent: source (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, May 15, 2017

Monday roundup (05-15-2017)

Greece slides back into recession at start of 2017 (The Telegraph)

Debt fears as county court judgments soar by more than a third: Year-on-year figures for first quarter follow warnings from Bank of England, MPs and charities over dangerous levels of debt (The Guardian)

Reports of Trump sharing classified info point to growing fear of him [in the United States] (CNBC) Ex-intelligence leaders: ‘Nightmare’ if Trump leaked to Russia: The president could have hampered the U.S. response to ISIS, security experts say. (Politico) Trump revealed highly classified information to Russian foreign minister and ambassador (The Washington Post) Trump Revealed Highly Classified Information To Russians During White House Visit: The president disclosed classified intelligence with the Russian ambassador and foreign minister last week, two US officials confirmed to BuzzFeed News. (BuzzFeed) Lawmakers express shock and concern about Trump disclosure of classified information (The Washington Post) GOP Senator: White House In A ‘Downward Spiral’: Trump ally Bob Corker said the administration “has got to do something soon to bring itself under control.” (The Huffington Post) Reckless, stunning, inexcusable: Democrats on report that Trump disclosed highly classified info (CNBC) White House Denies Reports of Classified Leaks to Russia (NBC Nightly News)












G.O.P. Senators Pull Away From Trump, Alarmed at His Volatility [May 14, before the intelligence story broke] (The New York Times)

Trump's quick to fire, but slow to hire, and that's creating a massive security risk [conservative National Review via] (CNBC)

American institutions are ‘under assault’ by Trump. But do people care? (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, May 14, 2017

Sunday roundup (05-14-2017)

NBC/WSJ Poll: Just 29 percent approve of Trump’s firing of James Comey (CNBC)

Republicans plan massive cuts to programs for the poor: Under pressure to balance the budget and align with Trump, the House GOP has its eye on food stamps, welfare and perhaps even veterans’ benefits. (Politico)

     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, May 13, 2017

Saturday roundup (05-13-2017)

Germany can save the euro by bringing back the Deutsche mark (The Hill blogs)

[In the United States,] Trump meltdown sets off GOP alarms over 2018 midterm: A three-day party gathering highlights senior Republican officials grappling with a profoundly unstable White House. (Politico)

In four decades covering politics, Chris Wallace has never been more stunned than he was this week (Rare) (VidMe)



Trump must be impeached. Here’s why. by Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard Law School (The Washington Post)

Will Trump Be the First to Politicize the FBI?: Shortlist names like Kelly Ayotte and John Cornyn sound like ideal Washington department heads—until you realize why the FBI has never had a political leader. (Politico)

Trump’s Expected Pick for Top USDA Scientist Is Not a Scientist: Sam Clovis likely to be named undersecretary of the USDA department that manages research on everything from climate change to nutrition. (ProPublica)

Banks Are Failing Again in America: It doesn’t mean the broader economy is in trouble. But it’s bad news for the people already struggling. (Slate)

Hartford Moves Closer to Bankruptcy, Soliciting Proposals From Law Firms [May 9] (The Hartford Courant)

Cincinnati firm to lay off more than 500 workers (The Cincinnati Business Courier)

Where have all the insects gone? (Science)

     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, May 12, 2017

Friday roundup (05-12-2017)

Manager of the world's biggest hedge fund [Ray Dalio] says the long-term economic picture 'looks scary' (CNBC)

IMF, euro zone say need more time to reach Greek debt relief deal (Reuters)

[In the United States,] Trump Interview With Lester Holt: President Asked Comey If He Was Under Investigation (NBCNews)



In a Private Dinner, Trump Demanded Loyalty. Comey Demurred. (The New York Times)

Trump's warning to Comey deepens White House crisis (The Hill) Bob Schieffer On Trump: 'He’s Making Fools Of His Own Staff' (Crooks and Liars blog)



5 Questions About James Comey’s Firing, Answered: A former FBI special agent weighs in. (Politico)

The one little number that — so far — is all the protection Donald Trump needs (The Washington Post)

Something Trump and Elizabeth Warren agree on: Bringing back Glass-Steagall to break up big banks (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.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Thursday roundup (05-11-2017)

Bank of England leaves rates unchanged, lowers 2017 growth forecast (CNBC)

[In the United States,] Acting FBI director contradicts Trump White House on Comey, Russia probe (The Washington Post)




Inside Trump’s anger and impatience — and his sudden decision to fire Comey (The Washington Post)

Trump is the dupe in Russia photo op (CNN) Russian State Media Get Access To White House Meeting While U.S. Press Kept Out: “It’s unprecedented,” says NBC’s Andrea Mitchell. (The Huffington Post) Trump Official: We ‘Let the Biggest Perpetrator of Fake News into the Oval Office’: Team Trump is “either in bed with the Russians or too stupid to understand the severity of this mistake,” an official fumed after Kremlin press got exclusive Oval Office access. (The Daily Beast) Here’s how the Russians might have snuck a recording device into the Oval Office (The Washington Post)

[Asked why Flynn stayed 18 days on the job after warnings,] Trump said firing Flynn 'did not sound like an emergency' (CNN)

20 attorneys general call for independent investigation on Russia (The Hill)

More bad news for Trump: His poll numbers just hit a bunch of new lows (The Washington Post)

Trump Plan to Shift Trillions to the Rich Surprisingly Unpopular: Sad! (VanityFair)

BT to restructure Global Services [by cutting 4,000 jobs] after 'challenging year' (Reuters)

Siemens to cut 1,700 German jobs in efficiency drive (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, 05-11-17)

A recovery would be indicated by weekly initial jobless claims holding below 500,000, according to 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 slipped 2,000 to a seasonally adjusted 236,000 for the week ended May 6, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Claims have now been below 300,000, a threshold associated with a healthy labor market, for 114 straight weeks." (Marketwatch)

US jobless claims fall; continuing claims lowest since 1988 [Reuters via] (CNBC)

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, May 10, 2017

Wednesday roundup (05-10-2017)

Comey’s Firing Came As Investigators Stepped Up Russia Probe: FBI director had been providing updates to top members of the Senate Intelligence Committee (The Wall Street Journal) Days Before Firing, Comey Asked for More Resources for Russia Inquiry (The New York Times) Grand jury subpoenas issued in FBI's Russia investigation (CNN) Senate Intelligence Committee subpoenas Flynn for documents in Russia probe (CNBC) [versus] White House spokesperson: 'Time to move on' from Russia probes (The Hill)

Firing FBI director Comey is already backfiring on Trump. It’s only going to get worse. (The Washington Post) Preet Bharara says he’s “troubled by the timing and reasoning” about James Comey’s firing: The former U.S. Attorney joins Sally Yates and Comey as people who have been fired while investigating allies (Salon) Don’t Be Complicit, Republicans [written someone who served in the previous three Republican administrations] (The New York Times) Firing Fuels Calls for Independent Investigator, Even From Republicans (The New York Times) I worked with the FBI as a federal prosecutor. Trump is threatening the bureau’s independence. (The Washington Post) ‘Enough Was Enough’: How Festering Anger at Comey Ended in His Firing (The New York Times)

Bush's ethics lawyer: Comey's firing is 'worse than Watergate' (CNBC)

House Speaker Paul Ryan hopes Senate will pass health-care bill in 'a month or two' (CNBC) Going down: GOP's Obamacare replacement bill got less popular after it was passed (CNBC)

Senate unexpectedly rejects bid to repeal a key Obama-era environmental regulation (The Washington Post)

Warren Pushes Trump Administration on Plan to Break Up Megabanks (Bloomberg)

All of Trump’s campaign statements just vanished from his website. So let’s remember them. (The Washington Post)

Connecticut to drain reserve, cut spending to close budget deficit (Reuters)

Parexel will cut as many as 1,200 jobs worldwide (The Boston Globe)

     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, May 9, 2017

Tuesday roundup (05-09-2017)

EU warns Macron over French budget deficit (euronews)

Greek debt relief 'closer than ever' but creditors must act, Greek prime minister says (Reuters)

[In the United States,] Trump fires FBI director James Comey (CNN) President Trump dismisses FBI Director Comey (The Washington Post) Comey firing: Reaction from members of Congress on FBI director’s dismissal (The Washington Post) What Kind of Country Is This, CNN Jeffrey Toobin, Pres Trump Fires Comey In Charge of Investigation (Youtube)






Senate Democratic leader Schumer calls for special prosecutor in Trump-Russia probe (CNBC)

Trump wants to revive a 1933 banking law. What that means is very unclear (CNNMoney)

Will Republican senators pass the GOP health-care bill? Here’s what they’re saying so far. (The Washington Post) Juan Williams: Republicans have just handed Democrats a huge political gift (FoxNews)

The Long, Hard, Unprecedented Fall of Sears: An icon of 20th century American retailers laid low. (Bloomberg)

Standard Life Aberdeen Plans to Cut 800 Jobs After Merger (Bloomberg)

General Motors reports 600 layoffs at Delta Twp. Assembly plant (WXYZ)

     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, May 8, 2017

Monday roundup (05-08-2017)

Italexit could DESTROY Eurozone: Expert’s stark warning to EU amid rocky Italy relations: AN ITALIAN exit from the European Union would be "a shock for the entire eurozone” that would "threaten its survival", a top financial expert has warned. (The Express)

Divided Senate Republicans [in the United States] Turn to Health Care With a Rough Road Ahead (The New York Times) The Four Flagrant Lies Republicans Are Telling to Sell Trumpcare: GOP congressmen spent the weekend misleading the public about what will happen if the American Health Care Act becomes law. (The New Republic)

EPA dismisses half of key board’s scientific advisers; Interior suspends more than 200 advisory panels (The Washington Post)

Texas governor signs 'sanctuary cities' ban, but law enforcement leaders see problems ahead (The Los Angeles Times)

Puerto Ricans Face ‘Sacrifice Everywhere’ on an Insolvent Island (The New York Times) 5 facts about Puerto Rico's utter economic misery (CNNMoney) Puerto Rico's Fate Will Come Down to Decisions of a Single Judge (Bloomberg) Puerto Rico's debt crisis is a wake-up call. It could be crushed like Greece: Puerto Rico’s future is not in the hands of its people, but in the hands of a group of non-elected technocrats, that as such are not accountable to Puerto Ricans (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.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Sunday roundup (05-07-2017)

France rejects Le Pen and her right-wing populist tide, and turns to Macron (The Washington Post) Macron is France's next president — here’s what happens next (CNBC)

Senate Republicans [in the United States] Plan Health Bill That Keeps Some of Obamacare (Bloomberg) Kasich blasts GOP health care bill as inadequate (Politico) Five senators to watch in healthcare fight (The Hill) Collins: 'The Senate is starting from scratch' on healthcare (The Hill) Blunt: Senate will wait for CBO score before healthcare vote (The Hill) Don't Count On The Senate To Save Obamacare, Or To Save The House (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.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Saturday roundup (05-06-2017)

How Trump's Property in Manila Looms Over His Interactions With Duterte: The president’s decision to invite the leader of the Philippines to the White House is another example of a gesture complicated by his business interests. [May 2] (The Atlantic) How Trump could boost fortune by making nice to brutal Filipino strongman: the value of White House invitation [May 2] (The New York Daily News)

Trump Weighing 95 Percent Cut to Drug Office, Chief Warns Staff (Bloomberg) White House dismisses concerns over steep potential cuts to "Drug Czar" office (CBSNews)

Billion Dollar Bank Failure – Guaranty Bank of Wisconsin Closed by Feds (Problem Bank List blog) [as posted here yesterday] Five Billion Dollar Bank Failure – First NBC Bank, New Orleans, Closed by Regulators (Problem Bank List blog) [as posted here last week]

     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, May 5, 2017

Friday roundup (05-05-2017)

Republicans Just Voted to Take Away Health Care From Millions of People [in the United States]: The House Trumpcare bill could raise rates on people with preexisting conditions while cutting taxes for the rich. (Mother Jones) Senate wary on ‘Obamacare’ repeal, bumpy path ahead (The Associated Press) Senate GOP rejects House Obamacare bill: 'Any bill that has been posted less than 24 hours ... needs to be viewed with suspicion,' Sen. Lindsey Graham says. (Politco) Americans for Tax Reform Will Rate the Vote on AHCA, HR 1628 (Americans for Tax Reform)

It’s Not Too Late to Save Net Neutrality From a Captured FCC: The Trump-appointed FCC chairman has ushered in a virulent strain of market libertarianism. He can and must be stopped. (The Nation)

Feds shut down Guaranty Banks due to failure: The banks will be absorbed by First-Citizen Bank (WTMJ) Guaranty Bank, (d/b/a BestBank in Georgia & Michigan) of Milwaukee WI had a troubled assets ratio of 90.6 percent. (BankTracker)

State Farm to cut 600 jobs in Kalamazoo County (MLive)

Central Grocers files for bankruptcy, will lay off 550 at Joliet warehouse (The Chicago Tribune)

     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, May 4, 2017

Thursday roundup (05-04-2017)

Plunging oil prices show OPEC has lost its grip on the market (CNBC) Oil price collapse is 'permanent'; analyst says fossil fuel has had its day [Postmedia Network via] (The Calgary Herald)

Could Marine Le Pen beat the odds and win the French election? (CBSNews)

Germany says no debt relief being prepared for Greece (Reuters)

Brits owe more than £1.5TRILLION in personal debt, Bank of England figures reveal: Debt is at its highest since the financial crisis with the most worrying trend being that of credit card debt, with a record £67.6billion owed on plastic (The Mirror)

[In the United States,] House Republicans claim a major victory with passage of health-care overhaul (The Washington Post) The Next Step for the Republican Health Care Bill: A Skeptical Senate (The New York Times) With House vote, Obamacare replacement heads to more skeptical Senate (CNBC) Hold that victory lap! This GOP Obamacare replacement has almost no chance in the Senate (CNBC) Health care bill 'shameful,' 'harmful,' medical groups say (CNN) Vote to repeal ObamaCare spells doom for House Republicans (The Hill blogs)

A Cautionary Tale From Texas About How Cities Hide Debt And Deflate The Economy: Politicians can make promises without having to worry about transparency or its consequences, like honesty and effectiveness. Thus, America is drowning in state and local debt. (The Federalist)

How Much Does a Politician Cost? A Groundbreaking Study Reveals the Influence of Money in Politics. [Article opens with discussion of Glass-Steagal] (The Intercept) Fifty Shades of Green (Roosevelt Institute)

     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.