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Are U.S. Banks Ready for a Break Up of the Euro?

Simon Johnson, is the former Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and is now at MIT.  Last month he wrote “The End of the Euro: A Survivor’s Guide.”  Today on Bloomberg.com he writes that U.S. Banks Aren’t Nearly Ready for the Coming Euro Crisis. Some of his thoughts on the matter: Very few … Continue reading

Market Recap and a Look Ahead (week ended 6/22)

The stock market encountered a roller coaster ride this week, rallying early based on positive news in the Greek Elections and in anticipation of a potential QE3 announcement from the Fed on Wednesday.  When the Fed only delivered on Operation Twist, stocks sold off. The S&P 500 finished the week at 1,335, down 0.6% for … Continue reading

Thoughts on the Fed (FOMC) Meeting

The FOMC wrapped up its two-day meeting by announcing that it will extend the Operation Twist program for the rest of the year. The statement also said that “the committee [FOMC] is prepared to take further action as appropriate to promote a stronger economic recovery and sustained improvement in labor market conditions in a context … Continue reading

The Rain in Spain…

No sooner has the financial world breathed a collective sigh of relief over the results of the Greek Elections, than the dam appeared to spring another leak.  This time  in the form of surging Spanish bond yields. As reported by the WSJ.Com yields on the Spanish Ten Year Treasury “surged to the highest on record … Continue reading

Market Recap and a Look Ahead (week ended 6/15)

A nervous stock market managed to post a modest gain for the week as the financial world awaits the results of Sunday’s election in Greece.  The S&P 500 Index closed at 1,342 up 1.3% for the week. Randall Forsyth of Barron’s noted that “stocks took off Thursday afternoon in the U.S. in reaction to various … Continue reading

Friday Humor: (The Onion) Drunken Ben Bernanke Tells Everyone at Neighborhood Bar How Screwed Up Economy Really Is

From the Onion: SEWARD, NE—Claiming he wasn’t afraid to let everyone in attendance know about “the real mess we’re in,” Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke reportedly got drunk Tuesday and told everyone at Elwood’s Corner Tavern about how absolutely…..Excerpt from The Onion Very funny, but also very sad that there is more truth in this article … Continue reading

Coming to a Theater Near You?

Back in April the Sun Sentinel news in Ft. Lauderdale, ran an investigative series titled Bad-Neighbor Banks, which focused on the side effects of the South Florida foreclosure crisis.  The article describes how some of “the world’s biggest banks” have left vacant homes to literally rot away. In Florida the problem is magnified by the … Continue reading

Keep ’em Coming Bartender…

They say a pessimist  is  just an optimist who has the facts. They also say that where a pessimist sees a half empty glass, and the optimist half full; the pragmatist simply fills the rest of the glass with Vodka.  This week Barron’s Magazine published the midyear roundtable update and it just might leave you to … Continue reading

Market Recap and a Look Ahead (week ended 6/8)

The S&P 500 posted its biggest gain of the year with 3.6% rebound in the aftermath of a tough month of May. Yields on the benchmark Ten Year Treasury rose to 1.63% after finishing the previous week below 1.5%. SPY data by YCharts

Friday Humor: The Economist and the Politician

 A man in a hot air balloon realized he was lost. He reduced his altitude and saw a man below. “Excuse me, but can you help me? I promised a friend I would meet him an hour ago but I don’t know where I am,” he said. The man below replied: “You are in a … Continue reading

All Eyes on Ben

The Federal Reserve Open Markets Committee (FOMC) does not meet until the 19th of this month, but this is a big week for Central Bankers nonetheless. On Wednesday the European Central Bank (ECB) meets and as Neil Dennis of the Financial Times writes,“Given the rapid deterioration in confidence and business activity surveys in May, there … Continue reading

Market Recap Week Ended June 1, 2012

A tepid jobs report for the month of May along with European fears, including news/rumours  of Spanish banking withdrawals left the S&P 500 Index at 1278, down more than 3% for the week. More Ominously, the U.S. Ten Year Treasury Note  closed at a record low of 1.47%.  Even more astounding yet, the The German … Continue reading

Humor: The Only Thing We Have to Fear…

A little Holiday/Friday humor from the Onion, perhaps my all time favorite. http://www.theonion.com/articles/mar-5-1933,10640/

Give a Man a Fish Feed Him For a Day…

Eighteen years ago I read a book (Investment Psychology Explained)  that proved invaluable to me, not because it told me how to invest, but because it taught me  how to think about investing. Fast forward to 2012 and The Indomitable Investor has eclipsed the previously mentioned title. Managing investments is about managing risk. Author Steve Sears … Continue reading

Market Outlook: The Two Sure Things of Jobs Report Friday

Well it’s Job’s Report Friday, the first Friday of each month when the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) releases the “Jobs” report.  More specifically the monthly “Employment Situation Summary” which consists of the household survey and the establishment survey (monthly payroll numbers). As with all Jobs report Fridays, two things are almost assured to happen. … Continue reading

David Stockman – “Warren Buffet’s Humbug”

Recommended reading from David Stockman in regards to Warren Buffet’s “gushing drivel” about the government’s financial bailout: Warren Buffet’s Humbug (excerpt)  As it turned out, the probability that a sharp contraction of GE Capital’s footings would not have had noticeable impact on the macro economy was never tested due to the Washington’s alphabet soup of bailouts. Instead, … Continue reading

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