Japan and China lead flight from the dollar

Japan and China led a record withdrawl of foreign funds from the United States in August, heightening fears of a fresh slide in the dollar and a spike in US bond yields. The US requires $70bn a month in capital inflows to cover its current account deficit Data from the US Treasury showed outflows of […]

Monster wind farm would be one of world’s biggest

While I greatly applaud wind energy (coming from the flat windy low-lands of Holland) in local sustainable wind farms that accommodate small communities and don’t affect the environment to the point of destruction, I fail to see why these monstrosities have to do with a sustainable society. They don’t replace dirtier forms of energy, they […]

Children’s homes hit by buyout fears

John Key and National anyone ? Concern at private equity’s role in social services Nick Mathiason, business correspondent Sunday October 14, 2007 The Observer The collapse of a private equity-backed care home dealing with sexually abused and autistic children has sparked renewed concern at the advance of financial buyers into British public services. Sedgmoor, owned by […]

Millions of Americans in Economic Battle to Make Ends Meet

The Bush recovery has been good for Wall Street, but not Main Street. The economic recovery that began in 2001 has brought slow job growth, limited wage gains, and continued rising inequality. While families at the top of the income ladder have seen their incomes rise faster than inflation, those in the middle and bottom […]

Brian Fallow: Cullen not as tight-fisted as the billions in surpluses may show

It is easy to see Michael Cullen as a tight-fisted guardian of the public purse. Especially on days like yesterday when he was – yet again – reporting surpluses even fatter than expected but being coy about the prospect of personal tax cuts. Some of the numbers in the Crown books are hard to square […]

“Rulers and Ruled in the US Empire”

James Petras is Binghamton University, New York Professor Emeritus of Sociology, whose credentials and achievements are long and impressive. He’s a noted academic figure on the left, a well-respected Latin American expert, and a longtime chronicler of the region’s popular struggles as well as being an advisor to the landless workers (MST) in Brazil and […]

Economy boost delivers $8.7b surplus

Solid governance, prudent spending, are we going to through it al away with National and investment banker “Smiling assassin” John Key? New Zealand’s better than expected economic performance delivered the Government a $8.7 billion operating surplus for the 2006/2007 financial year, but Finance Minister Michael Cullen says it is still uncertain when any tax cuts will […]

Cato’s Trade Report: Blinded by Ideology

By Paul Craig Roberts 10/09/07 “ICH” — — On August 28 the Cato Institute in Washington DC published a report, “Thriving in a Global Economy: The Truth about US Manufacturing and Trade.” The report confuses a company’s offshored products with its import competition and wrongly concludes that US companies with the most import competition are […]

US Housing Crisis: Why Real Estate is Always a Wasting Asset

Meanwhile, speaking of housing, there are a lot of long faces among house sellers this morning. According to the weekend news, the story just becomes more and more depressing. “American Dream turns to a Nightmare,” begins the report in the Arizona press. (A modest suggestion to financial journalists: find a better headline. We’ve read that […]

In this age of diamond saucepans, only a recession makes sense

Economic growth is a political sedative, snuffing out protest as it drives inequality. It is time we gave it up George Monbiot Tuesday October 9, 2007 The Guardian If you are of a sensitive disposition, I advise you to turn the page now. I am about to break the last of the universal taboos. I […]

UK Money Supply Has Tripled Since 1997

Thomas McAnea was a drunk, an ex-con freed on a technicality and a failed businessman with barely “two pennies” to rub together, according to the Scottish police. He was also an expert forger, a specialist in faking holograms for official documents. And in January, ‘Hologram Tam’ – as his underworld clients knew him – was […]

Half of NZ finance firms will go, says economist

Half of New Zealand’s finance companies are likely to disappear, according to ANZ/National Bank chief economist Cameron Bagrie. “I think we’re set for a real shake-out over the next 12 months,” he said. “The more marginal player is going to find it tougher,” he told the New Zealand Mortgage Brokers Association annual conference. “The weaker, […]

Without Cheap Credit, Consumer Economy Will Disappear by 2020

Our old pen-pal Jack Lessinger has a new book out: CHANGE Jack is a rare economist. He studies social trends and connects them to economic trends…and, finally, figures out how they affect the property market. His book outlines the development of the US property market over the past two centuries in terms of what he […]

“Capitalism and Freedom” Unmasked

An era ended November 16, 2006 when economist Milton Friedman died. A torrent of eulogies followed. The Wall Street Journal mourned his loss with the same tribute he credulously used when Ronald Reagan died saying “few people in human history have contributed more to the achievement of human freedom.” Economist and former Treasury Secretary Lawrence […]

Millionaire’s factory in the spotlight as concern mounts

In Australia, Macquarie Bank is known as the “millionaires factory” for good reason. In the past 10 years, it has come from nowhere to become one of the world’s most aggressive buyers of airports, toll roads, energy firms and utilities. If an asset has a reliable cash flow, Macquarie, it seems, has pounced. In so […]

The Fat Cats Protection League

Wherever you hear the words “free market”, you’ll find massive state handouts to corporations By George Monbiot. Published in the Guardian 4th September 2007 After my column last week, several people wrote to point out that the neoliberal project – which demands a minimal state and maximum corporate freedom – actually relies on constant government […]

New bank registered in New Zealand

JPMorgan Chase Bank has been registered as a bank in New Zealand, the Reserve Bank said. JPMorgan Chase Bank is incorporated in New York and will operate a branch in New Zealand. It intends to only operate in the wholesale market and will not have a retail business. There are now 17 registered banks in […]

Credit crisis strikes UBS, Citi, Credit Suisse

By Andrew Hurst and Christian Plumb ZURICH/NEW YORK (Reuters) – The credit crisis struck at the heart of the global financial industry on Monday as Swiss bank UBS AG said it faced a shock loss in the third quarter and Citigroup warned its profits had collapsed. UBS’s chief domestic rival Credit Suisse Group also said […]

Shock Therapy on Wall Street: What’s Next?

The debt crisis is more significant than most people think, and is causing panic in high places. Tools Institutions and human psychology lead financial markets to bounce back and forth between exuberant greed and catatonic fear. Times of fear generate high unemployment. Times of greed are likely to be times of destabilizing inflation. – Economist […]

Era of Easy Credit Ends as Subprime Troubles, Mortgage Costs Increase

Posted by Joel Bowman on Sep 19th, 2007 In matters of the heart, they say it is better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all. We’re not sure the same can be said for matters of the wallet. After all, “money borrowed” does, at some point, demand a dutiful transformation […]

Black day for shares as €4.5bn lost

By Brian O’Mahony, Chief Business Correspondent ON a black day for Irish shares a total of €4.5 billion was wiped off the value of the Irish Stock Exchange yesterday. Market sentiment was certainly not helped by fears that investors in one of Britain’s biggest mortgage lenders, Northern Rock, might lose their life’s savings as the […]

Greenspan on 60 Minutes: It was all Bush’s fault

By Mike Whitney 09/17/07 “ICH” — – Alan Greenspan’s appearance on 60 Minutes was preceded with all the pomp and ceremony of a royal wedding. The public relations blitz dragged out for a whole week. What profound truisms would the elusive former-fed master divulge to the News Magazine’s withered-coquette, Leslie Stahl? Would he produce his […]

Greenspan: era of low inflation is over

Graeme Wearden and Ashley Seager Monday September 17, 2007 Guardian Unlimited Photograph: AP   Britain faces the prospect of falling house prices and rising inflation within a few years, according to Alan Greenspan, the former chairman of the Federal Reserve.In a series of interviews to promote his memoirs, the respected US economist warned that the […]

Cullen planned $1 billion in tax cuts

The Government planned to deliver $1 billion in personal tax cuts at the last budget, but shelved the plan due to fears it would fuel inflation, official papers show. The papers, issued under the Official Information Act, show the Government last year considered a package of personal tax cuts that would have equalled the $1 […]

Fed to meet for US rate decision

The Federal Reserve is preparing to meet to decide whether US interest rates should be reduced from 5.25%. Most analysts believe the Fed will cut rates to try and prevent a housing market downturn and the credit crunch from severely denting the economy. By making money cheaper to borrow, people would spend and invest more, […]

Families feel pinch as basic costs rise

By PAUL EASTON – The Dominion Post | Tuesday, 18 September 2007AdvertisementHouseholds are being squeezed by price increases on basic foods and petrol, even before higher power prices and a sliding Kiwi dollar begin to take effect. Budgeting agencies fear the increase in staple food prices, including butter’s 23 per cent increase yesterday and milk’s […]

Credit crisis: Meltdown!

In the past 100 years, the rollercoaster ride that is the world of high finance has seen some spectacular lows. Sean O’Grady looks back at four episodes that not only came to define their times but also served as lessons for the future Published: 15 September 2007 1907: The Bankers’ Panic Sometimes, all that is necessary […]

Ailing lender’s checks bounce

By Jamie Smith Hopkins | Sun reporter September 15, 2007 Checks sent out by the troubled American Home Mortgage Investment Corp. to pay the property taxes of more than 70 homeowners in the Baltimore metropolitan area have bounced, local officials said yesterday. Baltimore City received bad checks for 53 properties – a total of about […]

‘Housing boom over’ as UK bank chaos grows

Economist warns of sharp downturn · Tory leader attacks Brown over crisis Heather Stewart and Lisa Bachelor Sunday September 16, 2007 The Observer Britain’s house price growth will be halved next year as the global financial crisis exacerbates the impact of rising mortgage rates, according to Nationwide, the biggest mortgage lender.After the dramatic bail-out of […]