Links: 2009-04-29

  • Holdouts Jeopardize Debt Plan for Chrysler – DealBook Blog –

    You sorta knew this was coming: “some smaller banks and hedge funds are still balking at the terms, setting the stage for a tense final two days in which the fate of Detroit’s third-largest automaker will be decided.”

  • Decline and Fall of Western Civilization: headwaters of the pathogen

    “A Mexican village whose inhabitants were overwhelmed by an outbreak of respiratory illness starting in February has emerged as a possible source of the swine flu outbreak which has now spread across the world.”

  • Turbulence Ahead: The Welfare of the State

    Thoughts regarding the present Irish Depression, immigrants, unemployment in Ireland and potential anti-immigrant populistic anger

  • FT Alphaville » China drives copper

    Is China responsible for a copper bubble? Where is the underlying demand? Are they stockpiling it for industrial use or as a currency backing? ALl very interesting questions.

  • How similar is the current crisis to the Great Depression? | vox

    Despite the stunning contraction of industrial production and trade across the globe, the global economy is still a far cry away from the calamities of the Great Depression. However, if the economic damage of the current global crisis may have been contained so far, worrisome parallels to the early 1930s remain and preventive policy actions must be kept up.

  • WSJ/NBC Poll: Obama Not Tough Enough on Banks – Real Time Economics – WSJ

    President Barack Obama’s biggest flaw so far is not cracking down hard enough on Wall Street, the latest WSJ/NBC News Poll shows. While Mr. Obama got overall positive ratings for his job performance from almost seven in 10 of those surveyed, 36% said their most negative feelings stemmed from Obama not being tough enough on banks, companies and Wall Street firms. Coming in at a close second, 31% said he was spending too much and increasing the budget deficit.

  • International Real Estate – For Sale in…Paris –

    The French know how to live. “This one-bedroom one-bath walkup apartment is set above a shop in the Arts et Métiers neighborhood of the Marais. It has floor-to-ceiling windows, rough limestone walls and exposed wood posts and beams. The 880-square-foot (82-square-meter) apartment occupies the entire second floor of a five-story building. ” All for 550,000 euros

  • Property Values – What You Get For… $225,000 –

    A seven-bedroom three-bath Victorian near downtown in Iowa. Pretty sweet, if you ask me. Or you can go with a two-bedroom one-bath town house built in 1920 in Baltimore.

  • Paul Krugman – Bailouts for Bunglers –

    This is classic Krugman. I love the title. “Question: what happens if you lose vast amounts of other people’s money? Answer: you get a big gift from the federal government — but the president says some very harsh things about you before forking over the cash.”

  • egghat’s blog: Bankenbilanz Fake Nr. 4: Die Deutsche Bank

    Deutsche Bank reached its goal of 25% return on capital. But is the question of a large numerator or a small denominator. This German post suggests it is because Deutsche Bank (like other European banks) has too little capital, not because earnings were spectacular.

  • EconomPic: Depression Equity Returns… Not So Bad

    “An investor who invested a lump sum in the average stock at the market’s 1929 high would have been back to a break-even by late 1936 — less than four and a half years after the mid-1932 market low. How can this be? Three factors have obscured this truth from investors: deflation, dividends and the distinction between the Dow Jones industrial average and the overall stock market.”

  • Robert Scheer: The Clinton Bubble

    Has Timothy Geithner ever had lunch with a non-megamillionaire who has lost his job or home because of the banking meltdown? I ask that question after reading the list of the treasury secretary’s luncheon dates when he was head of the New York Federal Reserve, a list that the government was forced to provide in response to a lawsuit. During those years when he was supposed to be supervising Wall Street, he supped most often in the top-echelon dining room of some bank or at the home of one of the financial moguls who created the mess that has now bankrupted billions throughout the world.

  • – Eurozone economic confidence rebounds

    A larger-than-expected rebound in eurozone economic confidence has added to evidence that the worst of continental Europe’s recession is over, even though its effects continue to hit consumers and businesses.

  • US fund manager Danny Pang arrested over alleged fraud – Telegraph

    Californian fund manager Danny Pang has been arrested over allegations he defrauded investors out of hundreds of millions of dollars.

  • Milken: Roundtable on Credit Markets

    There was a good roundtable discussion this morning at Milken on credit markets. The video follows after the break, and it’s highly worth watching:

  • Download Microsoft Office 2007 Service Pack 2 – Office SP2 Improves Speed

    Service Pack 2 for Microsoft Office 2007 significantly improves the performance of Microsoft Outlook and also adds support for OpenDocument format in Word, Excel and PowerPoint 2007.

  • | Willem Buiter’s Maverecon | Gagging on Google

    I harbour feelings of a similar nature, sadly. This company had promise, but it has gone AWOL. Google, with about 50 percent of the global internet search market, is the latest in a distinguished line of IT abusive monopolists. The first was IBM, which was brought to heel partly by a forty-year long antitrust regulation (which ended in 1996) and partly by the rise of Microsoft.

  • Specter’s Math | The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan

    It’s a classic pattern of the losing party actually becoming more extreme after it loses – because the rump is more marinated in ideology than the less committed and more pragmatic members. You can spin this as cowardice on Specter’s part, and many will. But it does not strike me as a good sign for the GOP that the base in a state like Pennsylvania – already trending blue – is trending ever more red.

  • A Filibuster-Proof Majority? – Swampland –

    You have to go all the way back to 1937 to find the last American President who enjoyed what was, in practice, a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, according to Senate Associate Historian Donald Ritchie.

  • Research Recap » Credit Card Issuers Coping with Record Delinquencies

    Fitch Ratings says US credit card delinquencies and charge-offs breached record levels last month as consumer credit quality deteriorated further in the worsening economic environment. Despite these results, portfolio yields increased and excess spread levels remained robust, Fitch says in its Credit Card Movers and Shakers (U.S.) report.

  • naked capitalism: Yet Another Program to Enrich Banks at Taxpayer and Borrower Expense

    Plenty of seconds are under water and have NO economic value. But they play like pigs in foreclosure and renegotiations. So this program will validate values above market value for these homes and unnecessarily enrich second mortgage holders, who otherwise would have to eat their losses. Elizabeth Warren wrote about it last November:

  • Seventeen banks may need to raise capital – MarketWatch

    “At least 17 of 30 large regional banks that have less than $100 billion in assets may need to raise additional government or private capital, according to a report by Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. on Tuesday.”

  • Dean Baker: The Obama Administration and the Bankers: 100 Days of Solicitude

    Here’s a statement I largely agree with: “In most areas of public policy the Obama administration has given the country a sharp and welcome break from the policies of the prior administration. Unfortunately, this is not the case with his financial policy. To a large extent Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has continued the Bush-Paulson “save the banks” first approach.”

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