Archive for January, 2011

A Bearish Take On China

Just a minute this evening so here’s some food for thought from the uber-bear, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard: The French bank has told clients to hedge against the danger of a blow-off spike in Chinese growth over coming months that will push commodity prices much higher, followed by a sudden reversal as China slams on the brakes. […]

Another Oil Shock Coming?

Back in April 2009 I wrote a post which drew on the work of James Hamilton with regard to oil prices as the possible proximate cause of the Great Recession. Hamilton had pretty much nailed the decline in economic output that would result from an oil shock equivalent to the one we experienced in 2008 […]

Housing’s Fall Tops Great Depression Levels

From Reuters, here’s a pretty amazing statistic: Home prices fell for the 53rd consecutive month in November, taking the decline past that of the Great Depression for the first time in the prolonged housing slump, according to Zillow. Home prices have fallen 26 percent since their peak in 2006, exceeding the 25.9 percent drop registered […]

Revisiting Ibanez

Last week I suggested that the Ibanez case of faulty mortgage documentation in Massachusetts was something of a tempest in a teapot. I wasn’t alone in downplaying the effects but a couple of pretty smart people have put forth some arguments that make me, at least, a bit less sanguine. John Carney argues that while […]

Higher Savings Rates For The Very Bold

A friend pointed out this website to me. It offers information on savings rates available from a fairly wide selection of countries. It’s kind of fun to play around with as it provides not just rates but political risk scores as well. If you’re tired of earning nothing on your money then here are some […]

The Cost Of Servicing Our National Debt

Here’s an interesting number from the WSJ Economics blog — 3.4%. That’s what the CBO estimates will be the share of GDP that we pay in interest every year on the national debt in 2020. Thanks to the Federal Reserve’s efforts to keep interest rates extremely low, the U.S. government is currently getting a very […]

Less Than Meets The Eye In Ibanez Foreclosure Case

Lots of doomsday scenarios floating about concerning the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court’s decision in US Bank vs Ibanez. Is it all warranted? First the bare bones. The Court’s decision upheld lower court’s finding that two foreclosures were improper as the banks involved had not proven that they owned the mortgages on the properties. To make […]