The IMF failures in Greece bring back vivid memories of the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997-98... As the Indonesian episode should teach us, the IMF’s management can be very political and often neither trustworthy nor competent. Greece offers yet another chapter.
Our monetary politburo is driving the US economy in the wrong direction. That is, toward dis-employment of its true, wealth-creating economic resources - human labor, entrepreneurial talent and market driven gains in economic factor efficiency. Contrary to this week’s self-congratulatory statement, all is not well and its not getting weller.
The so-called “trustees” of the social security system issued their annual report last week and the stenographers of the financial press dutifully reported that the day of reckoning when the trust funds run dry has been put off another year - until 2034. So take a breath and kick the can. That’s five Presidential elections away!
...Except that is not what the report really says.
Italy Youth Unemployment Hits Record High 44.2%, Concerns Rising "Recession Exit May Be Unsustainable"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 07/31/2015 07:32 -0400
While the overall unemployment rate for the Eurozone also unchanged at 11.1%, it was renewed concern about what is going on in Italy, where unemployment rose from 12.5% to 12.7%, while Italy's youth unemployment rate, which surprisingly jumped by nearly 2% to 44.2%, a record level. As Bloomberg put it, "Italy’s jobless rate unexpectedly rose in June as businesses continue to dismiss workers amid concerns that the country’s exit from recession may not be sustainable."
During a short stay in Shanghai a few weeks ago on unrelated business, we had an opportunity to witness the ground zero of the China market frenzy at its peak and its nascent plunge. Chinese retail investors make up 85% of the market, a far cry from the U.S. where retail investors own less than 30% of equities and make up less than 2% of NYSE trading volume for listed firms in 2009. Combined with the highest trading frequencies in the world and one of the lowest educational levels, describing China’s market as immature is an understatement.
The worst "economic expansion" in history was even worse than previously expected.
Yesterday it was US and Italian energy giants Chevron and Saipem which announced a total of over 10,000 new job cuts in the aftermath of oil sliding back under $50 and resuming its downward trend. Today, we got more confirmation of this when Royal Dutch Shell, still basking in the glow of its proposed $70 billion mega-acquisition of BG Group, announced it would axe 6,500 jobs this year and step up spending cuts, responding to an extended period of lower oil prices which contributed to a 37 percent drop in the oil and gas group's second-quarter profits.
The ruling does not outlaw “bail-ins” per se. It simply ensures that guarantees given to bondholders cannot be retrospectively revoked. EU nations who have not yet ratified the BRRD have until the end of July to adopt the new EU bail-ins rules
Global oil prices have returned to a state of flux. This is hardly news to any who follow the oil markets closely and yet prices continue to drive international headlines. While oil prices are notoriously difficult to predict, it has failed to deter the speculators. There are those warning that the latest dip is a precursor for $40 a barrel, a catastrophe for oil markets in some minds. On the other end of the spectrum are the optimists betting on a return to $100 by 2020. The World Bank has taken a typically middle-of-the-road approach, with forecasts of $57 a barrel in 2015. That said, given Iran’s potential revitalization, Russia’s murky outlook, and U.S. shale supply limits uncertain, prices will be responsive to supply and demand trends; at least in the short to medium term.
Why I've come to thinking that Kyle Bass' short JGB premise may well be wrong
On a day when market participants will care about only one thing - how hawkish (or dovish) the FOMC sounds at 2:00 pm (no Yellen press conference today) - Chinese stocks provided the usual dramatic sideshow and traded unchanged or modestly negative for most of the day despite the latest $100 billion injection, the close of trading on Wednesday was a mirror image of what happened in the last hour on Monday, as various Chinese "plunge-protection" mechanism went into a furious buying frenzy and government-backed funds rushed to buy anything that trades in the last 60 minutes of trading in what may be the most glaring example of banging the close yet.
The minimum wage is not what is commonly referred, as is being proven again as parts of the US experiment directly with this boundary. In New York, fast food workers have been given a $15 per hour minimum wage which is being celebrated by the same fast food workers who will bear the brunt of the experimentation. Some of them will be happy with the results, but there will be clear losers – the full wrath of redistribution is usually unseen which is why it persists.
For several weeks the Schmitt family had a million-dollar secret on their hands. Last month, it recovered $1 million worth of sunken Spanish coins and jewels off the Florida coast. The Schmitts are subcontractors to 1715 Fleet-Queens Jewels LLC which since 2010 has the salvaging rights to a fleet of Spanish ships, aka the "1715 Fleet", that wrecked off the Florida coast some 300 years ago. While $50 million has been pulled in from the fleet’s resting place so far, this is so far the biggest single haul. The moment of euphoric discovery has been caught on tape, and yes, the diver sounds just a little more excited than were he to discover pet rock.
"I have lost everything. I don't know what to do... I trusted the government too much... I won't touch stocks again, I have ruined everyone in my family." "I will sell all my shares tomorrow if there is a chance." ... "I am pretty sure that if the government does not come to rescue us, the situation will get much worse," ... "I managed to sell them all at a loss today, and so I lost 320,000 yuan in two days. I don't have confidence on the market any more. I don't want to get into the market again."