Economic News Articles in the Great Recession — Archive for the week of 03-04-2012
Last week saw more “signs of economic recovery.” In an upset of Gallop predictions, the U.S. added more jobs. The Greek debt https://www.mindanews.com/buy-imitrex/ crisis was resolved. Consumer confidence improved. U.S. President Obama succeeded in dampening clamor for war. What? Have I suddenly become a flaming optimist?
As if all that wasn’t great enough, President Obama proclaimed at the close of the week that the U.S. jobs report was further evidence of economic recovery; and, while the stock market fell at the beginning of the week, it started going back up to its dizzying heights toward the end of the week.
What does a curmudgeon do with a week that abounded in good economic news?
He points out what wasn’t talked about by those whose main focus is keeping consumer confidence up. Theirs is a clamor of communications akin to those in George Orwell’s 1984 where the primary objective of communication and vocabulary, itself, was to keep the citizen believing all was as it should be. In an election year, nothing could be more important to the administration or those in control of congress who want to keep their jobs.
If you think these signs mean that real recovery is returning like a creeping tide and that 2012 will turn out to be better than 2011, I offer the following reality check: We saw the same kinds of change in February, March and April of 2011, and we heard the same talk of economic recovery. Though recovery remained out at the horizon the remainder of the year like a mirage, many continued to believe we were walking toward it all the way until the end of summer … when they fell like lemmings off a cliff!
The countervailing force to the prevailing good news at the beginning of 2011 came in the form of gasoline price hikes, a multitude of earthquakes in Japan with a huge tsunami, followed by the end of quantitative easing and then the looming emergence of Europe into the full throes of the Great Recession. Plenty of shock events tamped the weak initial hopes of recovery back down into the ground.
By August, the stock market plunged and housing prices declined further. By September, the world (and I along with it) was reverberating with noise about a second dip in the global depression, which we call a “recession” for the time being. And by October I began this blog to start countering the many parrots of the press who had spent the first part of the year chattering merrily about whatever cracker the government fed them.
Economic News Articles for the week of 03-04-2012
Economic indicators seen in the news this week
- 03/05 US Factory Orders Fell 1 Percent in January U.S. factory orders fell in January by the most in 15 months after businesses sharply reduced orders for machinery and equipment. Even with the decline, orders have gradually been climbing back to near pre-recession levels.
- 03/06 Biggest drop of year for Dow as US market slumps Stocks are falling sharply on Wall Street following steep losses in Europe. The Dow fell 200 points, its biggest intraday loss this year. The Dow has not closed down 100 points in 45 straight trading sessions, the longest streak since 2006.
- 03/06 Dire Poverty Falls Despite Global Slump The proportion of people living in extreme poverty fell in every developing region between 2005 and 2008. And the biggest recession since the Great Depression seems not to have thrown that trend off course, preliminary data from 2010 indicate.
- 03/09 Obama’s dilemma: More jobs, same unemployment rate The economy added 227,000 jobs in February, but the unemployment rate didn’t change at all. Woe is the White House, but why didn’t the unemployment rate change if the economy added jobs?
Economic predictions / forecasts that made news headlines
- 03/04 Former Reagan aide Stockman fears another even larger financial collapse David Stockman, former wunderkind of the Reagan revolution, is now an advocate for higher taxes, a critic of the work that made him rich and a scared investor who doesn’t own a single stock for fear of another financial crisis.
Euro crisis updates as the Great Recession goes viral
- 03/06 Gree?e downgraded to bottom rung as default looms Moody’s has downgraded Greece’s credit to the lowest possible level. It’s the third agency to take Greece dow, raising the question — is a Greek meltdown inevitable? Moody’s downgraded Greece because the possibility of default remains high.
- 03/06 Wall Street drops most in 3 months on Greece, economy Risk of a disorderly default in Greece and a reduced growth target in China dented confidence. The CBOE Volatility Index jumped above its 50-day average for the first time since November. A dozen stocks fell for every issue that rose.
- 03/06 What the Greek rescue is really about What’s going on Europe has nothing to do with solving a debt crisis and everything to do with preserving a corrupt system based on limitless debt and growing government power.
- 03/08 Greek Swap of Its Debt Appears to Be Secure Private lenders appear to have agreed to Greek deal, clearing the path for another major bailout by way of default. Participation may surpass 90%; but, given all the twists and turns in negotiations, something could still go wrong.
- 03/09 Greek Debt Is Restructured in Deal With Lenders Greece announced Friday that it had clinched a landmark debt restructuring deal with its private sector lenders. 85.8 percent of private creditors participated in the bond swap. [Europeans seek to avoid the word “default,” but default it is.]
- 03/09 The Hundred-Billion-Euro Bomb: German central bank at high risk “We’re caught in a trap,” Sinn says. “If the euro breaks apart, we’re left with an outstanding balance of nearly €500 billion, owed by a system that no longer exists.” That figure, €500 billion, is more than one and a half times Germany’s annual budget
The Iranium Reaction as it makes and shakes the news
- 03/04 Obama pledges to stop an Iranian nuclear weapon U.S. President Barack Obama strongly underscored his support for Israel on Sunday and said that “all elements of American power” remain an option to stop Iran from becoming a nuclear power, including “a military effort to be prepared for any contingency.”
- 03/05 Obama strengthens message as he and Netanyahu focus on Iran’s nuclear program “I reserve all options and my policy here is not going be one of containment; my policy is prevention of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons and, as I indicated yesterday in my speech, when I say all options are on the table, I mean it,” Obama said.
- 03/05 Oil up on Iran fears, but growth worries eyed Oil prices rose on Monday in tug-of-war trading, as supply risks and tensions over Iran’s nuclear program supported crude futures despite a lowering of China’s economic growth target and weak U.S. factory orders.
- 03/05 Video at Whitehouse: As Obama pledges to have Israel’s back, Netanyahu says it will be ‘master of its fate’ As allies monitor Iran’s movements toward joining the nuclear club, Obama and Netanyahu emphasize the solid alliance and friendship between the U.S. and Israel. Obama assured Israel’s leader that the United States “will always have Israel’s back.”
- 03/06 Iran and World Powers agree to start talks “We all agree that the international community should demonstrate its commitment to a diplomatic solution by … by testing [Iran’s] desire to talk and by offering it the opportunity to respond to our legitimate concerns….”
- 03/06 Netanyahu tells Obama: I have yet to decide whether to attack Iran Israel has not made any decision on attacking Iran to stop its nuclear program, and Obama and Netanyahu agreed to increase their coordination on Iran.
- 03/07 Israeli state officials disappointed with Obama meeting Senior Israeli officials assert it’s now certain Washington will not strike Islamic Republic. “We have different perspectives when it comes to the question of time and red lines.” Israeli leaders believe Iran is charging “full force” for nuclear weapons.
- 03/08 Iran ‘trying to remove evidence that it tested detonators for nuclear weapons’ IAEA says Iran is cleansing nuke detonator testing site while it delays inspection. Israeli leaders talk about impact of Obama meeting on timeline for attacking Iraq.
- 03/09 Iran: We’ll never suspend nuke activities Iran’s ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency stressed that the Islamic Republic “will never ever suspend our nuclear activities.” IAEA chief Yukiya Amano said, “Iran is not telling us everything…. Iran has a case to answer.”
- 03/09 Netanyahu: Strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities possible within months “We’re not standing with a stopwatch in hand,” he said. “It’s not a matter of days or weeks, but also not of years. The result must be removal of the threat of nuclear weapons in Iran’s hands.”
U.S. & U.K. banking / financial crisis as it shapes the economic news of our times
- 03/08 Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit gets a paycheck of $14.9 million Citigroup Chief Executive Vikram Pandit finally got his payday. The third biggest US bank paid him $14.86 million in 2011, compared with $1 in 2010.
- 03/09 Massive bailout-Bank of Scotland guilty of serious misconduct BofS pursued “an aggressive growth strategy” that focused on high risk lending. That policy contributed to the bank having to be bailed out by UK taxpayers; yet, the bank has escaped paying a substantial fine.
U.S. government moves (and blunders) in articles about the economy
- 03/09 Govt. sets record deficit in February The U.S. government recorded its worst monthly deficit in history in February, according to the Congressional Budget Office, which said the deficit in fiscal year 2012 is already more than half a trillion dollars.
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