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Imagine a World where all bank tellers, bank voicemail messages, bank emails and even bank faxes all end with – “Dude, I owe you big time.”
“Thank you, have a nice day, sincerely yours, and do not hesitate to contact us” will all become niceties from the past.
As far as we are concerned, there have only been two dudes in the history of the World. The 1982 Hollywood hit Fast Times at Ridgemont High produced Jeff Spicoli as the World’s very first dude. It wasn’t until 16 years later we were gifted the dude of all dudes – Jeff Lebowski from The Big Lebowski.
Yet, today, for some strange reason the big banks feel the need to expand their World domination strategy and position themselves right next to the dude. And with that, the righteous title of dude will be tarnished forever more.
Of course, to understand the big banks sudden interest in becoming dudes, we have to step deep into the cryptic World of the London Interbank Offered Rate, or LIBOR for short, or soon to become LieBOR for everyone else.
While investors still focus on one subject only, Europe, the Asian Tigers are definitely getting more tired. Latest out we had the Chinese figures earlier today, showing China is getting closer to contraction. Is the “sudden” slowdown going to be used as an excuse for more stimulus? From the Telegraph.
The bellwether economies of Taiwan and Singapore both contracted in the second quarter. Korea’s industrial output fell in June, while Japan’s manufacturing PMI index fell in July to the lowest since the Fukushima disaster, with the export gauge crashing to recession levels.
“Factory output, new orders and exports all decreased at the fastest rates since April 2011. These are worrying developments given the weakness of global demand,” said Markit’s Alex Hamilton.
While China has ostensibly held up much better, electricity use has been falling in recent months. “Unless the Chinese steel and aluminium industries have discovered how to make do without electricity, it would appear that their growth has virtually ground to a halt,” said Berkeley professor Barry Eichengreen.
The situation in Spain has not improved. Apart from the economy in free fall mood, the austerity effects are now spreading to various areas, affecting among other things the health care. From El Pais,
Despite being given more leeway by Brussels, the government has insisted the regions adhere to their target for the year of 1.5 percent of GDP. Catalonia, the region that contributes most to the domestic economy, refused to attend a meeting of the Council for Fiscal Policy on Tuesday to protest the central government’s intransigence on the deficit target, while Andalusia’s representative walked out of the meeting after saying the fiscal goals that had been set for Spain’s biggest region were unreachable.
“One of our priorities is that the liquidity crisis does not affect the public nor other levels of the administration,” the secretary of state for the budget, Marta Fernández Currás, said at a presentation of the figures. Currás said excluding the transfers, the deficit in the first half in fact narrowed to 2.56 percent of GDP from 2.63 percent a year earlier.
And the unintended consequences for people, read below.
The worst blackout to hit India in more than a decade leaves 350 million people in seven northern states without power on Monday. Hundreds of overnight trains were stopped in their tracks after power to northern railway lines was cut, and Delhi’s metro system was badly hit. Traffic jams were even worse than usual after most traffic lights failed. Video from the The Guardian.
Guest post by Azizonomics.
I am careful what I say on Twitter especially, and the internet in general.
The sad reality is that the internet is not the place for expressing views that you do not want the wider public — including police, and intelligence agencies — to know you hold.
We already know that the National Security Agency will soon capture all communications — phone calls, search histories, web history, e-mails, passwords, etc — in their Utah data centre. In Britain, a dangerous precedent is being set.
From the BBC:
A teenager arrested over a malicious tweet sent to Team GB diver Tom Daley has been issued with a warning.
Guest post by Doug Short.
Official recession calls are the responsibility of the NBER Business Cycle Dating Committee, which is understandably vague about the specific indicators on which they base their decisions. This committee statement is about as close as they get to identifying their method.
There is, however, a general understanding that there are four big indicators that the committee weighs heavily in their cycle identification process. They are: