Links: 2013-06-24

Threads in the news:

US: In the US, the end of the Fed’s tapering program is dominating headlines along with the NSA spying scandal. Frances Coppola has some pointed comments on this that I largely agree with. Take a look at that post just previous to this one. Interestingly, Paul Krugman also has a good take on the market’s reaction to Bernanke that I will cover shortly. I think he gets the reaction right irrespective of whether you believe QE is good policy, which he does and I don’t.

Snowden has left Hong Kong, where the government says it did not know his US passport had been revoked. He flew a commercial flight to Russia where he is looking to make it to Ecuador via Cuba and/or Venezuela.

Europe: Good article on the bank capital issue by Wolfgang Munchau which points to a major economic headwind even if the economy returns to recovery. Remember, even in the US where fiscal and monetary policy are both more accommodative GDP and employment growth are sub-par. Much of this has to do with private debt and bank capital problems. In Europe, the situation is worse. Jaime Galbraith and Yanis Varoufakis have an article pointing to Syriza as the only political party that can keep Greece from heading for the abyss. I am more optimistic, meaning I think they have already averted the abyss but I don’t think real growth is coming anytime soon. Can Syriza help Greece to real growth though? I doubt it. Leaving the euro is Greece’s only shot in my view.

Asia/EM: This is on track to be the worst month for shares in Asia for one year. Japan fell out of bed and Hong Kong and China are at multi-month lows. Growth in Asia is dissipating and it doesn’t look like the Chinese are in a hurry to get on the stimulus train to reflate, at least not yet. My view here dovetails with my view of EM as a whole, which is one of growth deceleration. The civil unrest in Turkey and Brazil should be seen i that light. There is pretty growth, but it is decelerating fast.

That’s my brief commentary on the links. Here they are.

Half of US already has smartphones, so mobile carriers push us to spend more | Ars Technica

Gasping in Krugman’s ocean of theory | Business Spectator

“So it comes down to which world do we actually inhabit? Are we airborne with the birds in a loanable funds world, where banks, debt and money are macroeconomic irrelevances, or are we underwater with the fish in an endogenous money one where banks are – like gills on a fish – crucial? No prizes for guessing my answer. Glug glug.”

Only Syriza Can Save Greece –

Peer to peer lending offers alternative to big bank finance | Money | The Observer

Mobile telco Three in advanced talks to buy €700m O2 Ireland –

Brazil Finds Itself in a Bind over Spending –

Chinese Industrial Subsidies Grow 23% – 

Dubai Accelerates Asset Sales as $30 Billion Debt Deadline Looms – Bloomberg

Vodafone Reaches Deal to Buy Kabel Deutschland – Bloomberg

Europe is ignoring the scale of bank losses –

U.K. Orders Google to Delete Data –

Facebook Aims to Become Newspaper for Mobile Devices –

California tells Bitcoin Foundation to stop trading or face a fine | The Verge

Obama’s crackdown views leaks as aiding enemies of U.S. | McClatchy

Update: Microsoft Restructuring Nears, As Execs Fret Over Their Fate – Kara Swisher – News – AllThingsD

Et Tu, Bernanke? –

Brazil protests continue with fierce clashes –

Google Handed Over Emails of Wikileaks Volunteers to U.S. Government

How Web mail providers leave door open for NSA surveillance | Politics and Law – CNET News

Nancy Pelosi booed, heckled at Netroots Nation 2013 – Emily Schultheis –

Schneier on Security: US Offensive Cyberwar Policy

Ways to Make Your Online Tracks Harder to Follow –

What Online Privacy Stuff Should I Actually Care About?

Is Digg’s very beta RSS reader enough to woo Google Reader users? (hands-on) | The Verge 

Indian bonds tumble as rupee hits record low; Fed decision hurts | Reuters

The very ugly truth about RBS – MoneyWeek | Greece to sell state lotteries by end of June

Revealed: The 44 Guantanamo Bay inmates too dangerous to release – Americas – World – The Independent

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