While the market is trapped in a range, the world is awaiting the Deal. Obama has loaded his gun, but the question is if Boehner will prevent somebody from getting shot? By Bill Wilson.
With White House talks ended over Obama’s insistence on job-killing tax increases, it is time for House Speaker John Boehner to turn up the pressure for spending cuts on the Senate.
On July 22, just minutes after defeating the House-passed “Cut, Cap, and Balance” plan to trim the deficit by $5.8 trillion over the next ten years and balance the budget by amending the Constitution, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid took to the floor to proclaim that his work was done.
Calling the legislation “dead,” Reid then made headlines by also taking his and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s proposal off the table for Senate action that would have let Barack Obama raise the debt ceiling without any spending cuts of substance included. He also made no mention of the so-called “Gang of Six” proposal.
Instead, Reid alluded to ongoing negotiations between House Speaker John Boehner and the Obama White House. He said, “The product on which they are working would address, as I understand, both taxes and spending. And under the Constitution, the House of Representatives must originate all revenue measures.”
Reid continued, “Therefore, the path to avert default now runs first through the House of Representatives.”
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The attack in Norway has prompted a debate in Europe over whether the recent electoral success of far-right parties has had any causal linkages to the attack of extremism on full display in Oslo.
Recent success of far-right parties across Europe has actually a lot to do with the fact that the extremist far right has cleaned up and become part of the mainstream. One of the main avenues of electoral success has been the idea that the far right, especially in Nordic and northern Europe — so countries such as Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands — that the far right in these countries is actually the last bastion of liberalism and protector of European-styled tolerance. The idea being that the reason these parties are anti-immigrant is because immigrants coming to Europe, specifically Muslims, are intolerant and that they therefore cannot be part of a tolerant, liberal society. This has played very well with voters in northern Europe.
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Financial Engineering is great. You can simply get anything to look good. Just like Greece miraculously swapped interest payments into the future, the famous US bail outs have some noteworthy fine prints you should read. Swapping from the left to the right pocket doesn’t make you more rich. Daniel Gross reports,
Most of the big banks have repaid the government funds they received under the Capital Purchase Program (CPP), the pillar of TARP under which Treasury bought preferred shares in the nation’s banks. Enough so that, combined with dividends and sales of warrants, Treasury has declared that taxpayers have earned a profit on the CPP. Thus far, $245 billion has gone out, and $255 billion in repayments, interest and warrants has come back, yielding a profit to taxpayers of $10 billion. And there’s several billion more where that came from.
But sometimes there’s less than meets the eye. Generally, banks that repaid CPP funds did so with cash raised from earnings, or by raising new outside capital. In finance and banking you always have to read the fine print. And if you go back to the report, you’ll notice that the fine print accompanying the entries for each of the above exits makes reference either to Footnote 49 or Footnote 50. Footnote 49 reads: “Repayment pursuant to Title VII, Section 7001(g) of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 using proceeds received in connection with the institution’s participation in the Small Business Lending Fund.” Footnote 50 reads: “Repayment pursuant to Title VII, Section 7001(g) of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 — part of the repayment amount obtained from proceeds received in connection with the institution’s participation in the Small Business Lending Fund.”
All of which is to say that these banks repaid cash owed to a program run by the Treasury Department by. . . borrowing from another program run by the Treasury Department.
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Small reminder on some of the points making the deadlock.
The “No tax” hike camp has got it wrong. The top Elite is not creating the jobs. The ordinary jobs are created by the small company USA. With unemployment of more than 9%, and 70% of GDP made up of spending, we clearly see who should be taxed.
The US companies are effectively shifting their companies abroad, while receiving the stimulus by Uncle Sam. With this trend having increased over the years, where will taxes come from?
Further reading, US Deadlock.
Relevant news continue below,
UK shareholders have received their largest dividend pay-outs since the collapse of Lehman Brothers almost three years ago, in a sign that companies are increasingly confident about the health of their balance sheetshttp://ftalphaville.ft.com/thecut/2011/07/25/632461/commodities-boom-fuels-uk-dividends/
Vince Cable has urged the Bank of England to consider another dose of quantitative easing to tackle “a serious problem of weak demand”, the FT reports, in a sign of growing ministerial alarm about the state of the economy. The business secretary’s highly unusual venture into monetary policy caused surprise at the Treasury and will irritate the Bank http://ftalphaville.ft.com/thecut/2011/07/25/632441/cable-appeals-for-new-dose-of-easing/
Only two formal bids have been made for over 600 Lloyds Banking Group branches, Reuters says, citing a Sunday Times report. The bidders were NBNK and Co-Operative Financial Services. Virgin Money, the financial services arm of entrepreneur Richard Branson’s Virgin Group http://ftalphaville.ft.com/thecut/2011/07/25/632391/few-bids-reported-for-lloyds-branches/
Several European banks with large exposures to Greek sovereign debt have yet to sign up to a plan for private-sector bondholders to contribute €37bn to a second Greek rescue package, the FT says. The UK’s Royal Bank of Scotland, http://ftalphaville.ft.com/thecut/2011/07/25/632371/major-banks-hesitant-on-greek-package
There is nothing bullish about a debt ceiling raise but rather bearish. Investors know that any deficit reduction means slower economic growth but they will do what they are told and that could very well mean going long. At 1,350 longs are currently ecstatic about the money they have made and will made while bears are in shock that new highs are moments away. If markets break higher people will ignore the reality of the global economy and will simply follow along, believing they are being true warriors, trading the tape before them not the tape they want.
Then out of no where the markets drops to 1,250 and the tide has changed. Bears are now ecstatic and bulls are in fear. Those warriors ready to trade the tape realize they don’t have the courage of their convictions. At 1,250 they would rather attempt to catch a falling knife and go long, the same knife they mocked bears for trying to catch at 1,350. Bears also having no conviction panic at the sight of the ES futures moving up and cover for a small profit, unwilling to hold for a big gain.
In rapid fashion 1,350 is presented yet again. The cat and mouse game continues. Bears are fearful, Bulls are greedy and those warriors are vindicated yet again. Besides emotionally exhausting all participants markets are instilling bad behaviors. The discipline of honoring stops, managing risk, taking profits, cutting losses are all gone.
The sole survivors of the coming market turbulence will be the true managers of risk, and there aren’t too many of those around….
With the European Economies falling off the cliff, the contagion effect is spreading to all nations. Merkel is feeling the heat, as the bail out(s) ultimately will be pad by the Germans.
The Telegraph reports;
German Chancellor Angela Merkel is facing a storm of protest at home after yielding to EU calls for radical action to shore up Spain and Italy, raising doubts over her ability to implement the package.
As the World is hit by drought in East Africa, Greece is falling of the cliff, psychopaths in Norway, the debt debate continues in the US. One can not but wonder what path the mighty US has chosen. Huffington Post reports;
Every part of the budget debate in the U.S. is built on a tissue of willful deceit. Consider the Republican Party’s double-mantra that the deficit results from “runaway spending” and that more tax cuts are the key to economic growth. Republicans claim that the budget deficit, around 10 percent of GDP, has been caused only by a rise in outlays. This is blatantly untrue. The deficit results roughly equally from a fall of tax revenues as a share of GDP and a rise of spending as a share of GDP.
Thus, at every crucial opportunity, Obama has failed to stand up for the poor and middle class. He refused to tax the banks and hedge funds properly on their outlandish profits; he refused to limit in a serious way the bankers’ mega-bonuses even when the bonuses were financed by taxpayer bailouts; and he even refused to stand up against extending the Bush tax cuts for the rich last December, though 60 percent of the electorate repeatedly and consistently demanded that the Bush tax cuts at the top should be ended. It’s not hard to understand why. Obama and Democratic Party politicians rely on Wall Street and the super-rich for campaign contributions the same way that the Republicans rely on oil and coal. In America today, only the rich have political power.
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