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Tag Archives: newsletter

Status of 9/11 Bill and the Saudi Threat

There continues to be much discussion among investors of New York Times report last weekend in which a Saudi official threatened to sell $750 bln of US Treasuries and assets if a bill that would allow families of victims to sue the Saudi government for involvement in the 9/11 terrorist strike.   The bill, formally known as the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, enjoys bipartisan support.  The bill is cosponsored by two Republicans but is also supported, for example, by the two...

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Fighting Recessions with Hot Air

   “Prepping” for Recession GUALFIN, Argentina – Stocks are going up all over the world. Meanwhile, it appears to us that the U.S. economy is going down. Go figure. For instance, a labor-market index created by Fed economists… and closely watched by Fed chief Janet Yellen… has fallen for three straight months. It’s the first time that’s happened since 2009. In spite of relatively strong payrolls data, the Fed’s labor market conditions index doesn’t look so hot – click to enlarge. And...

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FX Daily April 21: Bulls’ Charge Stalls, while Greenback Consolidates Losses

The US dollar has been largely confined to yesterday’s ranges against the major currencies. China’s yuan slipped lower for the first time in four sessions, while the Shanghai Composite fell 2.3%, the most since the end of February.   While a few equity markets in Asia managed to follow suit after US equity market gains carried the S&P 500 above 2100 since last November, small gains in Tokyo (0.2%), Australia (0.5%) were sufficient to keep the MSCI Asia-Pacific Index flat.  European...

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Making Sense of China’s Gold Fix and Hungary’s Dim Sum Offering

Earlier today, China launched its first gold fix.  It will offer a fixing twice a day going forward yuan. The Shanghai Gold Exchange established the fix the same way it is done in London and New York, by prices submitted by financial institutions.  In China’s case, 18 institutions, including two foreign banks, participate in the process. The key question for investors is if there is some larger implication of this development that they should be aware?    China is the world’s largest...

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Some Thoughts on US Fiscal Policy

The US presidential selection process is well underway, and yet there has been no coherent discussion of fiscal policy. In part, this is because it does not appear particularly urgent. The US deficit peaked in 2009 at 10.1% of GDP.  Last year it stood at what for most OECD countries an enviable 2.6%.  This year and next it is forecast by private sector economists to reach 2.9%. There are many who arguethat monetary policy has been as accommodative as possible.  With the expansion entering...

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FX Daily April 20: Markets Build on Yesterday’s Dramatic Recovery

Global capital markets staged an impressive recovery after the initial reaction to the failure to freeze oil output sent reverberations through the oil markets, commodities, and Asian equities. The sharp reversal begun in Europe and extended in North America has been sustained. Oil prices remain firm. Perhaps the realization that the labor dispute in Kuwait has reduced output by as much as 60% (to 1.1mln barrels a day) helped underpin prices. The fall in output may be of greater immediate...

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A Morally Sound Tax Reform Proposal

The Oppressed U.S. Taxpayer This year, Americans’ day of tribute to their federal overlords falls on April 18.  As calculated by the Tax Foundation, the average American will work from January 1 to April 24 (Tax Freedom Day) to pay his share of taxes to all levels of government with some $3.3 trillion to be forked over to the federal government and $1.6 trillion to state and local jurisdictions. [1] Image via forbes.com While any talk of tax cuts are verboten on the Democratic...

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Swiss Farm structure census 2015: Farms: between decline and stability

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Swiss Labour Force Survey 2015: Large increase in labour market participation of 55 to 64 year-olds

19.04.2016 09:15  – FSO, Labour Force (0353-1603-90) Swiss Labour Force Survey 2015 Large increase in labour market participation of 55 to 64 year-olds Neuchâtel, 19.04.2016 (FSO) – In 2015 the average age of the economically active population was 41.6 years (+0.7 years compared with 2010). The ageing of the economically active population is associated with an increased labour participation of 55 to 64 year-olds: between 2010 and 2015 the economic activity rate of this age group rose by...

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Malaysia CDS Spike After Abu Dhabi Puts Scandal-Ridden 1MDB In Default, Funds hidden in Switzerland

Over the better part of the past year, we’ve documented the curious case of 1MDB, Malaysia’s government investment fund founded in 2009. It’s a long and exceptionally convoluted story that doesn’t exactly lend itself to a concise summary but suffice to say that the development bank was something of a black box right from the beginning and in 2013, some $680 million allegedly tied to 1MDB ended up in Malaysian PM Najib Razak’s personal bank account just prior to an election. There are any...

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