A few items that caught my eye:

Special Report: America’s route to recovery (Reuters)

DeLong: The Fairness of Financial Rescue (Project Syndicate)

Are Homes now “Cheap”? (Calculated Risk)

A Tentative Sparkle Enlivens Holiday Shopping (NYT)

Credit-Card Delinquencies Rise Again (WSJ)

Chinese firm says won’t pay Goldman on options losses (Reuters)

Let the Good Times Roll (New York mag) Why James Grant Thinks the Economic Recovery Might be More Robust than Expected

GMAC Set for Another Cash Infusion (WSJ)

• Bruce Schneier:  Is aviation security mostly for show? (CNN)•

The Complete National Geographic — 1888 to Present on 160-GB Hard Drive

What are you reading?

Category: Financial Press

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

25 Responses to “Wednesday Reads”

  1. nertopia says:

    Well these are some good links!

    This video caught my eye with it’s clever editing and clear message… Using the theme and clips from the venerable christmas time movie “It’s a Wonderful Life!”… a message is sent that the “TBTF” banks are analogous to the “Potters” on Wall Street and that local community banks are analogous to George Bailey… Clever and quite well done! Worth a viewing! Here is the link…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Icqrx0OimSs

  2. franklin411 says:

    President Obama has restored America’s reputation on the world stage–we rebounded from being one of the most hated countries under Bush to being the most loved under Obama, and according to this article in Foreign Policy magazine, that has translated to a $2 trillion boost to America’s brand.

    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2009/12/17/the_two_trillion_dollar_man

  3. Mike in Nola says:

    f411: Yeah, it seems he’s wildly popular countries where he is not destroying their middle class to enrich his cronies.

  4. Transor Z says:

    Wow, thanks, f411. This “scientific” national brand-value graph brought to you by the letter Z and the number 5:
    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2009/12/17/the_two_trillion_dollar_man?page=0,1

  5. ab initio says:

    Jim Grant maybe on to something – the economy surprising to the upside. Surely not consensus since most prognosticators expect a slow recovery.

    Perversely this may set up the long end of the bond market with all the supply coming. And the equities which have rallied on the rumor could sell off on the news.

  6. MorticiaA says:

    http://graphicsweb.wsj.com/documents/ncaa_football/ncaa_football.html

    I love interactive web goodies. Combine that with a love for college football and a very slow work week and we have a recipe for several wasted hours.

  7. call me ahab says:

    the Reuters article-

    pretty much all nonsense-

    here- a green job for you and a research job for him-

    the new American prosperity- lmao

  8. mathman says:

    Ahab: i’m with you. It’s “happy talk” – hoping some miracle will keep the extend and pretend bubble going as long as possible. i think we’re living on borrowed time.

    Check out: http://kunstler.com/blog/2009/12/forecast-2010.html#more

  9. Mannwich says:

    That post by f411 was so ludicrous that I couldn’t even muster up the energy for a rebuttal. I also knew that many others would more than pick up the slack for my disgusted apathy. Muchos gracias, folks.

  10. bergsten says:

    The bank seems to have repossessed the Credit-Card Delinquencies Rise Again (WSJ) article/link.

  11. call me ahab says:

    mathman-

    dude- I already read the Kunstler forecast @ ZH but the link you gave f411 was an unexpected treat-

    pretty funny and true- this especially-

    “All those years I spent telling people that it was important to vote and wishing key demographics would show up at the polls, they make me feel like a chump. Because they all showed up and then most of them voted for you. And then you … won all these great, progressive victories.”

    are politicians after all

  12. franklin411 says:

    @Mannwich
    I seem to recall being rebutted quite often from March-June, when I suggested that the recovery was underway. If I recall correctly, the argument was that Armageddon was just around the corner, and the smart play was to buy “guns, God, and gold.” “DOW 1500″ was the battle cry. Or perhaps it was the “Bond Vigilantes.” Oh, but what about the threat of hyperinflation by Christmas? Whatever happened to that CRE bomb that was just itching to explode? Well, surely the dollar’s decline would lead to another oil shock and stagflation. If not that, then China was certainly going to cut off our credit cards. Besides, the American consumer was permanently scarred and wouldn’t even buy little Tommy a toy tank for Christmas. Plus, Daddy’s job was never coming back. Never never never!

    Guess what?

    You were all wrong.

    I was absolutely right.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! =)

  13. call me ahab says:

    f411-

    but you rational for the rally had nothing to do with the reason for the rally-

    even a blind squirrel can find a nut from time to time-

    keep believing though- and remember- Obama will make everything ok- if only in your mind

  14. Pat G. says:

    More money for GMAC, a blank check for the GSEs and interest paid to banks for term deposit facilities, are all indications that as this year ends and the next one begins that it is all (monkey) business as usual. Happy New Year!!

  15. wunsacon says:

    >> franklin411 Says:
    >> December 30th, 2009 at 3:17 pm
    >> President Obama has restored America’s reputation on the world stage–we rebounded from being one of the most hated countries under Bush to being the most loved under Obama,

    True. (At least, there’s a huge sense of relief.)

    >> According to this article in Foreign Policy magazine, that has translated to a $2 trillion boost to America’s brand.

    True, but that’s in nominal terms. (Is it not?) In real terms, the people who should’ve been washed out were not, while some people (responsible renters like me) have seen their buying power eroded anywhere from 30% to 50% as a result of government raising the cost of housing.

  16. Steve Barry says:

    @mathman:

    Thanks for the link. The following paragraph is a bit over the top, but damn, the essence of it hits a raw truth. I’ll be damned if half the world isn’t living in poverty while many Americans buy and play mass murder video games. It is the ultimate unstable situation.

    “One wild card is how angry the American people might get. Unlike the 1930s, we are no longer a nation who call each other “Mister” and “Ma’am,” where even the down-and-out wear neckties and speak a discernible variant of regular English, where hoboes say “thank you,” and where, in short, there is something like a common culture of shared values. We’re a nation of thugs and louts with flames tattooed on our necks, who call each other “motherfucker” and are skilled only in playing video games based on mass murder. The masses of Roosevelt’s time were coming off decades of programmed, regimented work, where people showed up in well-run factories and schools and pretty much behaved themselves. In my view, that’s one of the reasons that the US didn’t explode in political violence during the Great Depression of the 1930s – the discipline and fortitude of the citizenry. The sheer weight of demoralization now is so titanic that it is very hard to imagine the people of the USA pulling together for anything beyond the most superficial ceremonies – placing teddy bears on a crash site. And forget about discipline and fortitude in a nation of ADD victims and self-esteem seekers.”

  17. rootless_cosmopolitan says:

    Franklin411:

    “I seem to recall being rebutted quite often from March-June, when I suggested that the recovery was underway.”

    And? Is it underway? Define “recovery” and prove your claim it is.

    ” If I recall correctly, the argument was that Armageddon was just around the corner”

    Untrue.

    “and the smart play was to buy “guns, God, and gold.”…

    Untrue.

    “DOW 1500″ was the battle cry.”

    Untrue.

    … “Or perhaps it was the “Bond Vigilantes.” Oh, but what about the threat of hyperinflation by Christmas?”

    Untrue.

    “Whatever happened to that CRE bomb that was just itching to explode?”

    And you claim it isn’t? Are you delusional? Or are you stating something that isn’t true, although you know it isn’t true?

    http://mit.edu/cre/research/credl/rca.html

    ” Dec. 21 (Bloomberg) — Commercial property values in the U.S. declined in October to the lowest level in more than seven years as unemployment reduced demand for apartments, offices and retail space.

    The Moody’s/REAL Commercial Property Price Indices fell 1.5 percent in October from September to the lowest since August 2002. Prices were down 36 percent from a year earlier and are 44 percent below the peak in October 2007, Moody’s Investors Service Inc. said in a statement.

    Values are dropping as U.S. unemployment climbs and consumers cut spending. Office vacancies may approach 20 percent next year as employers hold off hiring, commercial property brokers Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. and Grubb & Ellis Co. said last month.

    “The number-one issue facing commercial real estate right now is the value declines that we’ve seen since prices peaked,” Matthew Anderson, a partner at Foresight Analytics LLC in Oakland, California, said before the data were issued. “I tend to think that the size of the declines moving forward is going to be smaller.”

    An estimated $1.4 trillion of commercial real estate debt is scheduled to mature over the next five years and Foresight estimates that 53 percent of it is “underwater,” meaning the value of the property is less than the mortgage, Anderson said.
    [...]”
    (http://tinyurl.com/ygjjb44)

    “You were all wrong.

    I was absolutely right.”

    Prove it. But not by pulling some lies out of you a.. what everyone, except you, has allegedly said here. You don’t seem to be very confident, if you need such a false triumphal pose based on straw man claims.

    rc

  18. Bizarre, ancient concept that apparently works. I’m just starting the regiment with organic cold pressed sesame oil. Check it out:

    http://www.oilpulling.com/

  19. tenaciousd says:

    @Ahab: I’m with you on that Reuters piece. I know I’ve been reading some version of that “special report” for twenty years…and I’m not even 40 yet (almost, but not yet!). Who knows. Maybe Obama will conjure up a five or seven year “recovery”–maybe even a Potemkin “boom.” But, I’ll be lying in wait. My new mantra is: “I will not miss the next bust! If you can’t beat ‘em, short ‘em.”

  20. MorticiaA says:

    Mathman: Outstanding column from Open Left — incredibly well-written, and I am convinced that many more than just those on the Left would wholeheartedly agree with the sentiments.