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Thu Mar 22, 2012, 08:31 PM

STOCK MARKET WATCH -- Friday, 23 March 2012

STOCK MARKET WATCH, Friday, 23 March 2012


SMW for 22 March 2012

AT THE CLOSING BELL ON 22 March 2012

Dow Jones 13,046.14 -78.48 (-0.60%)
S&P 500 1,392.78 -10.11 (-0.72%)
Nasdaq 3,063.32 -12.00 (-0.39%)


10 Year 2.28% -0.01 (-0.44%)
30 Year 3.36% -0.03 (-0.88%)









Market Conditions During Trading Hours






Euro, Yen, Loonie, Silver and Gold
















Handy Links - Government Issues:

LegitGov
Open Government
Earmark Database
USA spending.gov





Financial Sector Officials Convicted since 1/20/09 =
12
2/2/12 David Higgs and Salmaan Siddiqui, Credit Suisse, plead guilty to conspiracy involving valuation of MBS
3/6/12 Allen Stanford, former Caribbean billionaire and general schmuck, convicted on 13 of 14 counts in $2.2B Ponzi scheme, faces 20+ years in prison









This thread contains opinions and observations. Individuals may post their experiences, inferences and opinions on this thread. However, it should not be construed as advice. It is unethical (and probably illegal) for financial recommendations to be given here.



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Reply STOCK MARKET WATCH -- Friday, 23 March 2012 (Original post)
Tansy_Gold Mar 2012 OP
Demeter Mar 2012 #1
bread_and_roses Mar 2012 #15
Ghost Dog Mar 2012 #2
Ghost Dog Mar 2012 #3
Ghost Dog Mar 2012 #4
Hugin Mar 2012 #5
AnneD Mar 2012 #24
Fuddnik Mar 2012 #6
AnneD Mar 2012 #22
FarCenter Mar 2012 #23
Demeter Mar 2012 #42
FarCenter Mar 2012 #45
Fuddnik Mar 2012 #7
xchrom Mar 2012 #9
Po_d Mainiac Mar 2012 #17
westerebus Mar 2012 #25
Demeter Mar 2012 #43
Fuddnik Mar 2012 #49
Demeter Mar 2012 #50
xchrom Mar 2012 #8
Tansy_Gold Mar 2012 #39
xchrom Mar 2012 #40
xchrom Mar 2012 #10
Demeter Mar 2012 #44
xchrom Mar 2012 #11
xchrom Mar 2012 #12
xchrom Mar 2012 #13
xchrom Mar 2012 #14
xchrom Mar 2012 #16
xchrom Mar 2012 #18
Po_d Mainiac Mar 2012 #19
xchrom Mar 2012 #21
DemReadingDU Mar 2012 #28
tclambert Mar 2012 #48
xchrom Mar 2012 #20
xchrom Mar 2012 #26
DemReadingDU Mar 2012 #29
xchrom Mar 2012 #30
DemReadingDU Mar 2012 #31
xchrom Mar 2012 #32
Demeter Mar 2012 #46
Po_d Mainiac Mar 2012 #36
xchrom Mar 2012 #38
Fuddnik Mar 2012 #37
Po_d Mainiac Mar 2012 #41
xchrom Mar 2012 #27
xchrom Mar 2012 #33
xchrom Mar 2012 #34
xchrom Mar 2012 #35
tclambert Mar 2012 #47

Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 09:53 PM

1. NIKKEI isn't happy

and I have no ambition left. See you in the morning, maybe.

Anybody have a theme/artist/idea for the Weekend?

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Response to Demeter (Reply #1)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 07:30 AM

15. I'm pretty brain-dead too... only thing that comes to mind

is that we haven't had a food/cooking theme in a while - maybe "comfort food?" I am recalling a post from a few days ago when someone said that s/he was on overload and simply couldn't stand to read any more about how the 1% is crushing the rest of us ...

At first I was thinking of "emergency rations" as a food theme, but we probably ought to save that one.

Not very good, I know - maybe someone else can come up with something better.

Or maybe we could have a "Game of Thrones" weekend - the new season is coming up ... saw in the now-pathetic LBN that World Bank presidency may be disputed - that seems analogous enough?

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/03/23/uk-worldbank-idUKBRE82M05G20120323

(b&r has been waking before the crack of dawn, running out of energy by noon, struggling to get through the day, obliteratingly exhausted by 8pm ....need more sleep)

edit to add link on World Bank story, stolen from post in LBN

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 03:46 AM

2. Jersey keeps its top spot among offshore centres in global index

Jersey has retained its position as the highest rated offshore international finance centre and remains the only offshore jurisdiction to feature in the world’s top ten for private banking and wealth management, according to the latest Global Financial Centres Index (GFCI) released this month.

Overall, Jersey remains 21st in the competitive rankings, which are published every six months, ahead of Guernsey in 31st, Cayman Islands (40th) the Isle of Man (44th), and BVI (45th). Jersey has also gained two points in its overall rating.

In the rankings of industry sectors, Jersey is the only one of the offshore jurisdictions to feature and is ranked eighth in the global top ten for private banking and wealth management, just below Zurich and Toronto and ahead of Vancouver and Tokyo...

...One of the major findings from the latest edition of the index is that the offshore jurisdictions are now recovering after suffering reputational damage during the past four years in relation to the global economic crisis. In the last study of 2011, many of the offshore centres had begun to recover, a trend that, according to the conclusions of the current report, was ‘gaining pace’ with all the top offshore centres making modest gains in the ratings this time...

...Overall in the report, London continues to be the number one centre in the rankings, ahead of New York, though the report noted that the increasing regulatory burden, the recommendations of the Vickers report and the proposed financial transaction tax could prove potentially damaging to the City’s competitiveness. Abu Dhabi also entered the rankings for the first time at no.48, a move that sits positively with Jersey Finance’s decision to open an office in Abu Dhabi in 2011. Jersey Finance has its second overseas office in Hong Kong, which was ranked third in the listings once again.

/... http://jersey.isle-news.com/archives/jersey-keeps-its-top-spot-among-offshore-centres-in-global-index/10537/

Go figure...

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #2)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 04:21 AM

3. Hit by cuts, bankers run from London's square mile

In a small French village, nestled deep in Languedoc-Roussillon wine country, Gary Langton is putting the final dabs of paint to his bed and breakfast before the first guests arrive. It's the type of pet project many Britons dream of, though the opening of the restored 18th century silk farm, complete with heated swimming pool, is not without its stresses...

...He is one of a growing group of London investment bankers either turning their backs on the industry for good, switching to smaller finance boutiques or setting up their own, put off by what some see as the greater demands and diminishing rewards of their jobs at big banks...

...Stricter rules on capital are forcing banks to retrench drastically in some areas like bond trading, and the end of debt-fuelled banking is also hurting returns, meaning cost-cutting is key to getting firms back on track.

Return on equity at investment banks, a key measure of profitability, will drop to 6.8 percent in 2013, JPMorgan forecast last week, compared with 13.6 percent before new rules on capital and trading were introduced.

This bigger picture is adding to the various smaller irritations which Langton, for one, said were already gnawing at him: years of 5:30 a.m. starts and a financial crisis that suddenly turned bankers into "the worst people in the world", causing him to pretend at dinner parties that he was a teacher.

/... http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/03/22/uk-banks-departures-idUKBRE82L0NK20120322

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 04:41 AM

4. Bernanke Sees Need for Higher Household Spending to Fuel Growth

“Consumer spending is not recovered, it’s still quite weak relative to where it was before the crisis,” Bernanke said yesterday in the second of four lectures on the history of the Fed that he plans to deliver at George Washington University. “In terms of debt and consumption and so on we’re still way low relative to the patterns before.”

Bernanke, speaking at the second of four lectures he plans to deliver at George Washington University, said the Fed's policies in the last decade weren't responsible for the housing price bubble that led to the recession.

The Federal Open Market Committee said in a statement after a March 13 meeting that subdued inflation and high unemployment still warrant holding the benchmark interest rate near zero at least through late 2014. Signs the economy is improving don’t dispel risks to growth that include rising gasoline prices, fiscal cutbacks and a weak housing market, New York Fed President William C. Dudley said on March 19...

...The Fed chairman plans at 1:45 p.m. to give the opening speech at a two-day conference entitled “Central Banking: Before, During and After the Crisis.” Fed Vice Chairman Janet Yellen, Bank of England Governor Mervyn King, Bank of Japan Governor Masaaki Shirakawa and former European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet are scheduled to speak.

The conference will first consider a research paper by New York University Professor Mark Gertler saying the Fed’s asset purchase programs will help spur growth by reducing interest rates rather than by increasing the amount of reserves in the banking system.

/... http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-23/bernanke-says-higher-consumer-spending-need-to-sustain-growth.html

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #4)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 05:08 AM

5. Kind of hard to do that on a "WYLFWT" income, Ben.

"WYLFWT" = Would you like fries with that?

Gee, is it sinking in with them that doing away with the middle class wasn't such a hot idea? I doubt it.

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Response to Hugin (Reply #5)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:38 AM

24. Ben has a severe case of ITS.....

Ivory Tower Syndrome. Common cause is a life spent in Academia or on the Government Teet. Also commonly seen in career politicians and Wall Street CEO's and traders.

Symptoms include stupid ass comments that reflect a lack of grounding in reality, disassociation as to their responsibility in causing said crisis, and delusional thinking caused by an inability to differentiate facts from magical thinking.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #4)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:04 AM

6. I guess I could probably sell one of my yachts.

If I didn't feel like taking any of it out of the market. You know, and maybe buy some Chinese shit.

Yeah. Cheaper credit. Just what we need.....Yeah, that's the ticket!

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #6)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:26 AM

22. I would hold on to the yachts....

with global warming and all, house values etc. may be sinking. You might need that as a spare guest bedroom.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #4)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:34 AM

23. Reduced household spending is a good thing

2006 household spending was unsustainably high and based on borrowing against inflated real estate prices.

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #23)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 12:53 PM

42. That was then, this is now

Now it's purely poverty due to massive unemployment and under-employment. Nobody is borrowing, earning or inheriting. And Ben is sitting on his thumbs looking for someone else to do the heavy lifting. Like....banks. Right.

And whether he admits it or not, he knows how badly off the banks are. And in the global economy, ours are the better ones, because they are backed by the full faith and credit of the US Treasury....

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Response to Demeter (Reply #42)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 01:07 PM

45. Both Personal Income and the Compensation Received by Employees component are above 2008

So a decrease in consumption must be due to less assumption of new debt and more savings of earnings.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:08 AM

7. Blech. I've felt like shit all week.

How in the hell do you get bronchitis, in Florida, in the middle of summer?

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #7)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:52 AM

9. dude. stop that right now and get better.

stick your head over a pot of home made chicken soup -- that should do it.

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #7)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 08:39 AM

17. My bride was in Nashville for a conference three weeks ago

Returned with a nasty ass case of confederate crud, which she shared. We've morphed into mobile snot factories.

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #7)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:52 AM

25. Good question.

I thought I had picked up a flu bug about three weeks ago. Figured it was just a week's worth of junkitis. Oh no, it's been three weeks and I'm just about 85-90% human again. Ears are still clogged up and the sinus are still wacked out. The cough is all but gone which is a relief.

The weather is warmer than usual, but, there's not much pollen and it's fairly dry, so not that much mold. I get a flu shot. What ever it is, it is nasty.

Hope you feel better.

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #7)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 12:57 PM

43. Even though the weather thinks it's late May, it's still mid-March and that means Flu Season

and flu leads to bronchitis and pneumonia, esp. if you are run down, or have allergies active due to early pollen loads or smoke or stress....

Rest, drink fluids, lie in the sun a bit, and get well soon!

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Response to Demeter (Reply #43)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 03:46 PM

49. I've had a Demeter Day.

Nothing goes right. Pool pump repair guy doesn't call since Tuesday. I'm told "Oh, he's on vacation, and we may not get to you for another week or so!" No, jerk off, I found someone else.

"Poof!" Internet down. Now, I'm reminded of why I got rid of this company 5 years ago. @%&$#!!

Can't get in touch with them. They didn't show up for the appointment the last time this happened, about a month ago. Verizon is starting to look better again, even though I hate them.

Dogs are extorting treats. not the ones I offer them. No! These ones! And make it snappy! See these teeth?

I've had enough. Drink codeine infused cough syrup and head for bed. Dogs beat me to the bed. "Oh yeah? There's no room for you in this bed". As they lay crossways across it.

Walk around in stupor for a while. Screw it. I'm going back to bed.

See y'all later!

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #49)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:02 PM

50. I wouldn't wish that on a dog

The grandpuppy was visiting, and he was sick today. He should be empty enough to go on the rice and hamburger diet now. He went home about an hour ago.

I've been offered a paper job for NYTimes....seriously considering it. And met with the engineering contractors this afternoon, good meeting, so we can get the drainage problems straightened out here.

It wasn't such a bad day....of course, I did no work and therefore made no money....maybe that's why it wasn't so bad?

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:51 AM

8. i has the foggy morning

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Response to xchrom (Reply #8)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 11:39 AM

39. I love pictures like that

they are so full of creative inspiration. now if I only had time. . . .

BUT -- Miss Mattie is doing better, though she does NOT like the cone head contraption. And she takes her pills very well, as long as they are securely wrapped in something delicious. (No, chunks of hot dogs are NOT sufficiently delicious. She prefers salami or rare roast beef.)

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Reply #39)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 11:47 AM

40. i find cheddar cheese to be most beneficial to bribing my dogs to take their pills.

so many times they find the pills in what ever i wrap them in and spit them out -- how do they do that?
and they KNOW you want them to take that damn pill!!!!11

glad mattie is doing better -- cheers to her

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:55 AM

10. Corruption 'endemic' in politics {ireland}

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2012/0323/breaking1.html

?ts=1332499933

Corruption affected every level of government from cabinet ministers to local councillors during two decades of political dominance by Fianna Fáil, according to the final report of the planning tribunal.

The report, published yesterday, accused former taoiseach Bertie Ahern of untruthfulness. It found former European commissioner Pádraig Flynn behaved corruptly, and said another former taoiseach, Albert Reynolds, had abused his power.

Mr Ahern last night strongly disputed the report’s conclusions, saying he was incredulous at what he described as “objectionable and inaccurate” findings. He said he would be looking to vindicate his name.

The report also found some individuals at lower levels in Fine Gael and one former Labour councillor had been guilty of improper behaviour.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #10)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 12:59 PM

44. In other news, Water is Wet

It's Ireland, what do you expect? They have yet to recover from being conquered several centuries ago...

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:59 AM

11. Spain's borrowing costs up amid fresh deficit fears

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/finance/2012/0323/1224313766164.html


SPAIN’S BORROWING costs rose above 5.5 per cent for the first time since January as investors fretted about another escalation of the euro zone crisis amid signs of further economic weakening even in Germany.

Investors, already nervous about Madrid’s deficit and weak growth prospects, pushed Spain’s benchmark 10-year bond yields up 14 basis points (bp) to as high as 5.53 per cent. Italy’s borrowing costs also rose with the yield on its 10-year bond breaking through 5 per cent.

Markets have been calmed in recent weeks by the European Central Bank’s cheap loans for lenders, known as the longer-term refinancing operation. But investors are becoming nervous that the impact of the two LTROs is wearing off.

Marc Chandler, currency strategist at Brown Brothers Harriman, noted that Italian 10-year yields have fallen 180bp so far this year while Spain’s have risen 39bp. “That is after two LTROs,” he said. “That definitely concerns me. When the bonds rally it helps the banks’ balance sheets. But when yields start rising it hurts the banks even more. It is a vicious circle.”

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 07:01 AM

12. German manufacturing shrinks

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2012/0322/breaking11.html


Germany's manufacturing sector shrank for the first time this year in March on the back of falling new orders, raising concern over its resilience to the euro zone crisis and overshadowing optimism at the approval of Greece's bailout package.

Markit's manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) fell to 48.1 from 50.2 the previous month, a survey showed today, undershooting predictions of 51.0 and sliding below the 50 mark threshold that separates contraction from expansion.

It was the lowest reading since November's 47.9.

New orders in the manufacturing sector also fell at the fastest pace this year, dropping to 46.2 from 48.1.

"While Germany may avoid a recession, its growth is by no means robust. It's just scraping through," said Chris Williamson, an economist at Markit, which compiles the survey.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 07:06 AM

13. Portugal's core deficit widens

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2012/0321/breaking13.html

Portugal's core public deficit nearly tripled in the first two months of this year with tax revenues falling and spending up, showing the country has its work cut out to hit fiscal targets under its €78 billion EU/IMF bailout.

The gap widened to €799 million from €274 million in the same period a year earlier, when the deficit slumped by more than 70 per cent, the finance ministry's budget office said on its website late yesterday.

Earlier this week, finance minister Vitor Gaspar dismissed any suggestion that Portugal, facing its worst recession since the 1970s, is slipping behind the deficit reduction and reform timetable set under the bailout programme and ruled out asking for more rescue funds.

Many economists fear Portugal will follow Greece in requesting a new bailout, if not restructuring its debt. The government insists none of this will be needed.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 07:09 AM

14. World stocks mixed ahead of US housing data

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/W/WORLD_MARKETS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2012-03-23-06-52-46

BANGKOK (AP) -- Asian markets fell Friday amid mounting jitters over China's manufacturing slowdown. European stocks advanced and Wall Street futures rose as traders awaited the release of U.S. housing data.

Benchmark oil hovered above $105 per barrel after a big fall the day before. The dollar weakened against the euro but rose against the yen.

Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.5 percent to 5,873.87. Germany's DAX gained 0.6 percent to 7,022.42 and France's CAC-40 added 0.4 percent to 3,486.70.

In Asia, stocks were jolted for a second day in a row by an index, released Thursday, that showed renewed weakness in China's manufacturing. The gauge compiled by HSBC fell to 48.1 in March from 49.6 in February. Figures below 50 indicate that manufacturing is shrinking.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 08:32 AM

16. gangster Banks Keep Winning Public Business. Why?

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/gangster-banks-keep-winning-public-business-why-20120322


A friend of mine sent this article from Bloomberg, along with the simple comment: "Perfect." What's perfect? That the banks that have been caught repeatedly ripping off communities and munipalities -- banks that have paid hefty settlements for rigging bids, bribery and other sordid misdeeds -- keep winning the most public business. Apparently, our public officials aren't concerned about whom they hire to serve as the people's investment bankers.

From the piece, entitled "JPMorgan Claims No. 1 for Government Debt After Jefferson County":

JPMorgan, which emerged from the worst financial crisis since the 1930s as the most profitable U.S. bank, has parlayed crisis-era loans to cities and states and a willingness to outbid other firms in local government bond auctions into becoming the top underwriter of municipal debt last year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It was the first time the firm held that rank.

The turnaround was a milestone for JPMorgan’s municipal- bond department, which has been marred by its involvement in two of the biggest scandals in the history of U.S. public finance: a so-called pay-to-play scheme in Jefferson County, Alabama, that contributed to the biggest-ever U.S. municipal bankruptcy, and a federal probe that uncovered bid rigging of municipal-bond investment products.

This story dovetails with the larger story I have out in the magazine now about Bank of America, another Too-Big-To-Fail behemoth that placed a very close second in the area of municipal bond business, according to the Bloomberg survey. Chase managed $35.7 billion in long-term bond sales, while BOA/Merrill Lynch came in at about $200 million less.

Why does this matter? Because both banks, Chase and Bank of America, have been repeatedly tied to scandals involving the issuance of public debt. Bank of America paid a $137 million settlement for rigging the bids of bond issues in numerous communities (including places as far away as Guam), while Chase also paid a big settlement of $211 million last year for more or less exactly similar offenses involving localities in 25 different states.



Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/gangster-banks-keep-winning-public-business-why-20120322#ixzz1pwTy3YBW

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 08:43 AM

18. China Banks Said to Underestimate Local Government Risks

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-23/china-banks-said-to-underestimate-local-government-risks.html

Chinese banks misclassified about 20 percent of their outstanding loans to local governments, understating the risk that slowing revenue will cut borrowers’ ability to repay, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

The China Banking Regulatory Commission told lenders last month that they had incorrectly placed about 1.8 trillion yuan ($286 billion) of loans to local government financing vehicles in the safest category of lending, the person said, declining to be named because the matter is private. The banks erred in calculations and underestimated risks when they decided the loans were fully covered by cash flows from the projects, the person said.

Reclassifying the debts may force banks to set aside greater loan-loss provisions and seek more collateral from regional authorities, whose revenue growth has slumped as the world’s second-biggest economy slows. Agricultural Bank of China Ltd., the nation’s third-largest lender, yesterday unexpectedly posted its first drop in quarterly profit since its 2010 listing after creating more provisions than analysts had estimated.

Local governments in China, prohibited from directly taking out bank loans or selling bonds, have set up more than 6,000 financing companies to raise funds for projects such as stadiums, roads and bridges, the National Audit Office said in a June report.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 08:57 AM

19. Re: da toon

Been doin me part.

Any postage paid envelopes received from the banksters, get returned with a slab of the heaviest wood I can fit into the envelope.

&feature=player_embedded

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Response to Po_d Mainiac (Reply #19)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:22 AM

21. i stole that and X-posted in the occupy group. nt

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Response to Po_d Mainiac (Reply #19)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:03 AM

28. +++

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Response to Po_d Mainiac (Reply #19)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 03:02 PM

48. If Republicans get their way and the Post Office gets completely privatized,

then postage rates will go way up, you betcha. In Germany and Japan, first class is about double what it is here, and those are geographically tiny countries compared to the US of A.

See, if a private, for-profit company wants to charge you more, so the executives can give each other lavish bonuses, the only thing holding them back is competition, which doesn't really exist for the Post Office . . . or the TBTF banks, or the oil companies, or most other big corporations. Cartels and monopolies are wrecking the free market. That doesn't stop them from wanting to destroy the socialist, quasi-government run Post Office, though. If they admit it does a pretty damn good job of delivering mail cheaply, efficiently, and accurately, then they have to admit government does serve a purpose.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:11 AM

20. Watch exports making Swiss trade tick

http://www.thelocal.ch/2919/20120322/


Switzerland's trade surplus reached 2.7 billion francs ($3.0 billion) in February, up from the 1.6
billion francs in January, with the watch industry leading export growth.

Watch exports were up almost a fifth, reaching 1.6 billion francs for the month, with demand from Hong Kong strongest -- up 23.7 percent at 388.1 million francs.

Overall exports rose 1.3 percent to 16.7 billion francs compared to the same month in 2011 due to the extra working day in February this year. When the number of working days was corrected, exports were down compared to February 2011.

Imports were also up slightly, at 1.4 percent to 14 billion francs. Corrected to reflect the extra working day, they were down 6.3 percent against last February.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 09:58 AM

26. US to name surprise World Bank candidate Jim Yong Kim

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17481973

President Obama is set to nominate Korean-born US academic Jim Yong Kim to be the next president of the World Bank, according to reports.

The nomination of the Dartmouth College President, a doctor and former director of the HIV/Aids department at the World Health Organization, is a surprise.

Three African countries have endorsed the nomination of Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

The US has always held the post since the World Bank was founded in 1944.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #26)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:05 AM

29. Jim Yong Kim? Who is he? Does he have any ties to the banksters? n/a

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Response to DemReadingDU (Reply #29)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:20 AM

30. president of dartmouth

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Yong_Kim

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:JYongKim.jpg

Jim Yong Kim (born December 8, 1959) is a Korean-American physician, and 17th President of Dartmouth College. He has been a Professor of Medicine and Social Medicine and Chair of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He was a co-founder and later Executive Director of Partners in Health along with Paul Farmer, Todd McCormack, Thomas J. White and Ophelia Dahl. On March 2, 2009, Kim was named the 17th President of Dartmouth College, a position he formally assumed on July 1, 2009. Kim is the first Asian-American to assume the post of president at an Ivy League institution. On March 23, 2012, the White House announced that President Obama would nominate Kim as the next President of the World Bank.

Past endeavors
Kim has 20 years of experience in improving health in developing countries. He is a founding trustee and the former executive director of Partners In Health, a not-for-profit organization that supports a range of health programs in poor communities in Haiti, Peru, Russia, Rwanda, Lesotho, Malawi and the United States.
From 2004 to 2006, Kim served as Director of the World Health Organization’s HIV/AIDS department, a post he was appointed to in March 2004 after serving as advisor to the WHO Director General. Kim oversaw all of the WHO’s work related to HIV/AIDS, focusing on initiatives to help developing countries scale up their treatment, prevention, and care programs, including the “3x5” initiative designed to put three million people in developing countries on AIDS treatment by the end of 2005.
An expert in tuberculosis, Kim has chaired or served on a number of committees on international TB policy. He has conducted extensive research into effective and affordable strategies for treating strains of TB that are resistant to standard drugs. While at WHO, Kim was responsible for coordinating HIV efforts with the TB department.

Recent work
Over the past few years, Kim has been involved in the development of a new field focused on improving the implementation and delivery of global health interventions. He believes that progress in developing more effective global health programs has been hindered by the paucity of large-scale systematic approaches to improving program design. This new field will rigorously gather, analyze, and widely disseminate a comprehensive body of practical, actionable insights on effective global health delivery. In order to develop this field, Kim co-founded the Global Health Delivery Project, a joint initiative of Harvard Medical School’s Department of Social Medicine and the Harvard Business School’s Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness. The global health field case studies produced by this project form the core of a new global health delivery curriculum now taught at Harvard School of Public Health. Kim’s team has also developed a web-based “community of practice”, GHDonline.org, to allow practitioners around the world to easily access information, share expertise, and engage in real-time problem solving. Kim is on the Advisory Board of Incentives for Global Health, the NGO formed to develop the Health Impact Fund proposal. On March 23rd, 2012, President Barack Obama announced his nomination to become the President of The World Bank.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #30)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:29 AM

31. Yes, a physician. But how is he connected to the banksters?

or even economics?

I don't understand why Obama would nominate a physician rather than an economist or bankster to the World BANK.

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Response to DemReadingDU (Reply #31)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:32 AM

32. well here's my best guesstimate.

if he's been affiliated w/ harvard, dartmouth, big wig NGO's, etc -- then he knows the banksters.

instead of a usual suspect he's a little of an unusual suspect -- plus he is an ethnic minority, korean born.

the US gets to keep the world bank head but satisfy some of the BRICS.

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Response to DemReadingDU (Reply #31)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 01:46 PM

46. Because Kim is Gonna Be Timmy's Sock Puppet

Why else would you nominate someone with no qualifications at all?

This is a two-fer. Timmy gets back at Larry, and gets a pawn on the Big Board. It's Classic Stooges.



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Response to xchrom (Reply #26)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 11:29 AM

36. Does he look like Phat Summers? n/t

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Response to Po_d Mainiac (Reply #36)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 11:35 AM

38. ...

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Response to xchrom (Reply #26)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 11:35 AM

37. Followed very shortly by Larry Summers being forced into a mental institution.

They said ("Confidence Men", by Ron Suskind) he about had a meltdown when Obama re-appointed the Bernank to the Fed. He was under the impression that Obama had promised him the job. After that he wreaked havoc on just about every domestic policy the administration had.

Now he didn't get this "award", and it should be enough to make him spring a gear or two.

Wish I could watch.

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #37)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 12:25 PM

41. I'd preffer he die in a slow pain-wracked manner..n/t

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:01 AM

27. Japan, China and S Korea edge towards free-trade deal

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17484392

Japan, China and South Korea have moved closer to signing a trilateral investment agreement that could pave the way for a free-trade deal.

If signed it would be the first economic agreement that is backed by law between three of Asia's largest economies.

The countries have been working on an agreement since 2008.

Many Asian nations have been trying to improve ties as growth has slowed in markets such as the US and Europe.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:34 AM

33. Purchases of New Houses in U.S. Decrease for Second Month

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-23/purchases-of-new-u-s-houses-unexpectedly-fall-for-second-month.html

Purchases of new homes in the U.S. unexpectedly fell in February for a second month, a sign the recovery in the housing market may be uneven.

Sales dropped 1.6 percent to a 313,000 annual pace, the slowest since October, from a 318,000 rate in January that was weaker than previously reported, figures from the Commerce Department showed today in Washington. The median estimate of 78 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News called for 325,000.

Sales of new homes are struggling to gain momentum amid increasing competition from foreclosures, which are hurting all property values. Nonetheless, a pickup in hiring, growing incomes and mortgage rates near a record low are making all houses more affordable, which may help underpin the market.

“There are signs of life in the market in certain regions, but we’re not seeing a broad-based recovery,” said Michelle Meyer, a senior U.S. economist at Bank of America Corp. in New York, who forecast a 310,000 sales pace. “Builders are still competing with existing inventories. The spring selling season should show some modest improvement, but it will be limited.”

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 10:54 AM

34. The China US rare earth game

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/NC24Ad01.html

The joint complaint by the United States, European Union (EU), and Japan filed against the People's Republic of China (PRC) before the World Trade Organization (WTO) for its restrictive rare earth export policies marks another satisfying act in President Barack Obama's contain-China political theater. It also provides some insight into where the world is headed, and Japan's attempts to maintain its economic and geopolitical relevance.

The handwriting is on the wall for the PRC to lose the rare earth case. It is a virtual carbon copy of the raw materials export restrictions case brought by the US, EU, and Mexico against the PRC. Beijing lost, both in the original adjudication and on appeal in January 2012.

In the raw materials case, the WTO found that China's regime of export duties and quotas for bauxite and other materials created a two-tier system that favored domestically based traders and processors (including FDI entities), and discriminated against foreign purchasers. It rejected the PRC's defense that these measures were protected under GATT provisions permitting restrictions on exports for the purpose of conserving scarce resources and preventing environmental degradation, observing that price and quantity controls that primarily targeted foreign purchasers was not a plausible implementation of a conservation policy.

At the time, it was widely believed that a rare earth complaint would be next, and indeed the shoe dropped in high-profile remarks by Obama in the White House Rose Garden on March 13.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 11:02 AM

35. China outlook gloomy

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China_Business/NC24Cb01.html

MONTREAL - The latest survey of China's purchasing managers, an early gauge of changing economic conditions, indicated a weakening of domestic demand, adding to concern of a slowdown throughout Asia, although data from South Korea and Singapore looks more positive.

The HSBC/Markit flash PMI, which comes out ahead of the government's data. was reported at a lower than expected 48.1, the fifth consecutive month under the neutral 50 level, and down from 49.6 February.

Output fell 50.2 to 47.9 and new orders to 46.1 from 48.5, the latter hitting a four-month low signifying the worrying weakening of domestic demand and raising the likelihood of more monetary easing of the near future, if not immediately.

HSBC's China economist Hongbin Qu was more worried by the lowest employment reading since March 2009, which could suggest that "slowing manufacturing production was hindering enterprises' hiring desire", although in the view of Danske Research the current slowdown remains "substantially less severe" than in 2008.

A slight counterpoint to the positive side was registered by two countries notable for sensitivity to consumer demand in the developed economies. Singapore's external trade statistics for February, released last week, saw non-oil domestic exports rise by 30% on a year-on-year basis, strongly contrasting with a 2.4% decrease the previous month.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 02:50 PM

47. Apple Flash Crash: Stock Halted After Trade Causes 9% Plunge

Shares of Apple, the world's most valuable company, plunged 9 percent on a single trade, causing it to be halted by the single stock circuit breaker rule because of volatility.

A single trade of 100 shares at a price of $542.80 hit the tape at 10:57 coming from the BATS Exchange. The previous trade seconds earlier was at a price of $598.26.

"It looks like a fat finger mistake," said Joe Terranova, chief market strategist for Virtus Investment Partners.

________________________________________________

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/apple-flash-crash-stock-halted-162011818.html

Anyone having flash crash deja vu all over again?

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