Latest Posts

China: we “will take steps to protect the interests of our domestic industries”

China on Friday accused the US of protectionist and biased trade policies less than a week before president Barack Obama’s first visit to Beijing. In a stinging rebuke to Washington, China’s commerce ministry promised to take measures to protect its domestic industry after the US slapped anti-dumping duties on $2.6bn of Chinese steel pipe imports. The duties are part of […]

Read more ›

Intent and motive

In my recent post about the capture of the Obama Administration by the financial services lobby, I said it was irrelevant whether they were deliberately looking to line the pockets of the banking industry. This is an important point as you decide whether to donate campaign money, how or whether to vote, and who to elect to office in all […]

Read more ›

Rosenberg: “the mother of all jobless recoveries”

While I see the job numbers as pretty much what was expected, the data do make clear that we are seeing a major jobless recovery. David Rosenberg has a piece out today that goes right to the heart of the issue: All we can say is that if the overwhelming consensus is correct that the recession is behind us, then […]

Read more ›

Links: 2009-11-06

David Michael Green: Can You Hear Us Now? We still want change. Hat tip Lavrenti. Marc Faber has short term concerns about commodities, says gold may drop to US$800 – Business Intelligence Middle East Is this rally over the top yet? Insolvencies hit record high Up 28% in Britain RBS bank reports losses of £2.2bn Britain’s bottomless pit. Much worse […]

Read more ›

The less optimistic view of Treasury’s handling of the crisis

The Obama Administration is captured. To understand why it has acted as it has, one doesn’t have to take the view that its efforts to save the banking industry were a deliberate attempt to line bankers’ pockets by transferring money from taxpayers to the banking industry. One need merely read the last post I wrote on this topic. In their […]

Read more ›

Comprehensive unemployment rate is 17.5%

The employment market is pretty grim. We’re talking a double digit unemployment rate – and that’s just the base rate. The comprehensive unemployment rate is now 17.5% in the US.  This is a fact not lost on our politicians. Today, Barack Obama signed a bill that extends unemployment benefits and home buyer tax credits. But,, let’s parse the data to […]

Read more ›

10.2% unemployment, 190,000 jobs lost

Average weekly hours a record low of 33.0. Stock futures now down. The household survey says we have lost 1.3 million jobs in three months. 17.5% U-6 unemployment. Median duration of unemployment is now 18.7 weeks from 15.4 just 3 months ago – ugly. Here is an excerpt from the release (bolding added). The unemployment rate rose from 9.8 to […]

Read more ›

The wildly optimistic view of Treasury’s handling of the crisis

I was reading Kid Dynamite’s account of the recent Treasury – Finance Blogger meeting after having read a bunch of others (see them all in Abnormal Returns’ Nov 4th links). And I was struck by his characterization of the thinking at Treasuryregarding the financial crisis. I want to highlight two points and ask the question: didn’t the Treasury plan work […]

Read more ›

Economic nationalism and GM’s decision to keep Opel and Vauxhall

I have been reading press accounts of the GM decision to back out of the Opel/Vauxhall sale to the Magna/Sberbank consortium from various countries. There are a lot of different perspectives on this event in the U.S., Belgium, Spain, Germany, Russia, the U.K and elsewhere, because a lot of players are involved. The conclusion I come to is that economic […]

Read more ›

Better last claims report before employment number

The Department of Labor data released this morning indicated that 512,000 people filed initial claims for unemployment insurance in the latest week.  This is down 20,000 from last week and marks the last data points we are to get on employment before tomorrows employment numbers are released. All indications are that the number will come in around the 200,000 job […]

Read more ›