Monthly Archives: August 2008

Links 9/1/08

‘Big Dry’ turns farms into deserts BBC Investor interest in algae grows Financial Times Palinfest! Wily Obama beats McCain on strategy Andrew Sullivan, Times Online McCain’s gamble on Palin is shrewd Clive Crook, Financial Times Palin Republican pushback Diane Francis, Financial Post “The Ferraro Factor” Mark Thoma There is no need to fight Russia – […]

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Why No Questions About Special NYMEX Trading Session?

Reader Paul e-mailed about the special, early opening of the NYMEX to permit pre-Gustav trading. As he correctly noted: I have NEVER heard of a US market opening early due to macro events; the usual move is to CLOSE during exceptional circumstances. Neither have I. This looks pretty suspicious. Did some influential parties need to […]

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Links 8/31/08

Bargain Wine and the Big Mac Index Wine Economist Most Verizon FIOS Installations Violate National Electric Standards [Fire Hazards] Consumerist. You should also know that Verizon will cut your copper connection unless you insist. My Verizon DSL has been very sluggish lately and I have no doubt that it is deliberate. Huge rally against Taiwan […]

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Alan Blinder: "Is History Siding With Obama’s Economic Plan?"

Princeton economics professor Alan Blinder’s article in today’s New York Times provides a useful summary of a new book by a Princeton colleague, Larry Bartels, which finds consistent differences in economic performance and income inequality trends between Democratic and Republican administrations. From the New York Times: Many Americans know that there are characteristic policy differences […]

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Lehman in "Urgent" Talks to Close Deal Before Expected $4 Billion Writedown

When the Korea Development Bank had signaled that buying a stake in an investment bank might be premature at this juncture, it had appeared the bureaucrats had beaten back KDB’s chairman and former head of Lehman’s Seoul branch, Min-Euoo-song, who was pushing the deal. But the Telegraph tells us not only that negotiations are back […]

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Links 8/30/08

HuffPollstrology: Candidates’ Horoscopes, Polls And More For August 30 Huffington Post. Probably can’t be any less accurate than prediction markets…. “Big Misconceptions about Small Business and Taxes” Mark Thoma Oil Goes Limp Bespoke Investment Group Chancellor Alistair Darling warns slump could be the worst for 60 years Times Online. Admittedly, the UK economy is more […]

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This Week’s Bank Failure Surprisingly Costly

Some of the usual suspects have dutifully noted the closure of $1.1 billion in assets Integrity Bank of Alpharetta, Georgia (weirdly, the links at the Wall Street Journal to two stories lead only to “Page Not Available”). The plot is already familiar: the Friday night, FDIC prepack, in this case, with Birmingham, Alabama-based Regions bank […]

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Bank of China Cuts GSE Holdings by 25%

We wrote yesterday about Japanese retail and institutional investors exiting Freddie and Fannie holdings, and didn’t consider it as worrisome as it might seem on the surface, since at this juncture, the funding of our current account deficit is coming almost from central banks and to a lesser degree, sovereign wealth funds. Tonight, the Financial […]

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UK: Retailers Suffer Worst Month in 25 Years

The Independent reports that consumers have slammed on the brakes as far as shopping is concerned. The story draws on survey data, and contradicts official retail sales, which showed a modest gain. However, the aggregate data includes petrol and food vendors, so the real change was probably negative. From the Independent: Retailers delivered their worst […]

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Links 8/29/08

Arctic ice ‘is at tipping point’ BBC Why did Truman drop the bomb? Mies Economics Blog Bell Labs Kills Fundamental Physics Research Wired Zoom airline collapses and halts all flights Times Online Sense and Reality on Energy Floyd Norris, New York Times Merrill losses wipe away longtime profits Financial Times Weasel Brokers Whine When Faced […]

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GDP Release Signals Further Decline into Banana Republic Status

Last year, we put America on Banana Republic watch, and sadly, things appear to be playing out as we feared: I’m certain you’re familiar with the expression “death wish.” I am beginning to wonder whether America has a banana republic wish. The country has been taking steps towards being a small-minded, elite-dominated, sham democracy. Mind […]

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