Cutting Medicare/Medicaid, would deprive the largest health-care providers and insurers of easy profits...
Near Miss: The Philadelphia Fed's manufacturing index came in 8 standard deviations below the expert consensus estimate. It reinforces the negative report in the NY Fed's Empire Index earlier this week. The CPI numbers, at 0.5%, reflects the same big bump that the PPI reported earlier. (Although the gasoline price blip – half the increase - has now gone away.) Initial employment claims, at 408,000 were worse than expected, too. T-bills are at 70 year lows, mortgage rates are at 50 year lows and sales of existing houses were down 3.5% m/m. Gold closed the day at $1,822 and reached $1,870 overnight.
Syrian Terrorists: Assad's troops have been ridding Syrian cities of
protesters armed terrorist groups through the surgical application of tank fire. To calm the populace, the mangled corpses of protesters suspected terrorists are dropped in their neighborhoods after "questioning".
It's Official: Corruption and cover-up are an engrained practices within the SEC, where the documentation for over 10,000 inquiries into insider trading, fraud and market manipulation have been destroyed over the last 20 years. It wasn't the innocent they have been protecting.
Bar Bet: Neuroscientists report finding "few reliable differences between boys' and girls' brains" that would justify same-sex schooling. Yes, adolescents think about sex a lot. But they will do so anywhere, anytime. Remember?
Night of the Long Knives: An email from the Obama for America campaign describes Paul Krugman as "a political rookie." It goes on to blame the "ideologue Left" for complaining about Obama's willingness to sacrifice Medicare, which OFA believes "is a sound political strategy.”
Daylight Massacre: Morgan Stanley slashed the entire world's outlook for economic growth, cutting the 2011 global GDP forecast from 4.2% to 3.9%. Why? Blame the politicians, they said. Recent "policy errors" in the US and EU and the prospect of further fiscal tightening will push both "dangerously close" to recession.
Seems Like Old Times... Oil giant BP says it is investigating a new sheen in the Gulf of Mexico. No further information was offered. BP made it clear that “there is a lot of sheen in the Gulf of Mexico area” and that the substance did not necessarily come from a BP site . “Not necessarily.”
You Are There: Let's see, the financial system is more leveraged today than during the Tech Bubble, mutual funds are more into stocks than at any time in the last 40 years, the global economy is slowing sharply, European banks are teetering, and the US recovery has gone AWOL. Should we expect a market correction - or civil unrest, bank holidays, riots and such?
Asked & Answered: What do Massachusetts, Switzerland, and Singapore have in common? Their students can do math. As for the rest of the US, their 15-year old students ranked 32nd out of 65 OECD countries.
Sure Thing: Ms. Bachmann claims she will bring back $2.00 a gallon gasoline. Interesting. Petroleum is a global commodity. While I'm sure she would cripple the US economy, the only reliable way to bring down the price that far would be a world wide depression.
Errata: To the litany of things that Rick Perry doesn't believe in, add evolution. Climate change is a hoax perpetrated by scientists seeking cash. He also believes that most of what the federal government does is unconstitutional. He does seem to believe in miracles, especially the ones he thinks he performed.