Big Political Battle On Illegal Immigration Shifts To States

| December 31, 2010

Legislative leaders in at least half a dozen states say they will propose bills similar to a controversial law to fight illegal immigration that was adopted by Arizona last spring, even though a federal court has suspended central provisions of that statute. Some of the measures may not go into effect immediately, including Arizona-style bills […]

Blizzard Causes 100 Car Pileup In North Dakota….

| December 31, 2010

The North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) along with the North Dakota Highway Patrol (NDHP) has closed U.S. Highway 2 from Devils Lake to Grand Forks.

‘Biblical’ Floods Threaten Australia

| December 31, 2010

Flood waters swept through vast areas of northeastern Australia Saturday, threatening to inundate thousands more homes in a disaster one official said was of “biblical proportions”. As Queen Elizabeth II sent her “sincere sympathies” to Queenslanders who rang in a damp new year, the military was assisting deliver food and other supplies to isolated towns […]

Las Vegas Welcomes In The New Year With Record Low Temperature

| December 31, 2010

Las Vegas set a new record today for the coldest high temperature ever recorded in Las Vegas on New Year’s Eve at just 38 degrees. The old record for the coldest high, 45 degrees was set in 1975, the National Weather Service said.

QE2 Results Show Positive Improvements In The Economy…The Headwinds To Watch For Ahead Will Be Large State And Local Government Cutbacks, Rising Consumer Costs In Food And Energy And European Union Debt Problems

| December 30, 2010

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The number of U.S. workers filing new applications for jobless benefits fell below the key 400,000 level in the most recent weekly data, released Thursday, in a signal that the labor market is continuing to mend.   “Initial claims can be very volatile around year-end due to seasonal adjustment difficulties related to the […]

‘Solar Max’ Sun Spots Could Cause Costly And Destructive Weather Results

| December 29, 2010

The coming year will be an important one for space weather as the Sun pulls out of a trough of low activity and heads into a long-awaited and possibly destructive period of turbulence.  We have discussed this before as Art Cashin talked about it often this year. The Sun, rather than burn with faultless consistency, […]

Berlin Sees Most Snow In December Since The Year 1900

| December 29, 2010

BERLIN, Dec. 28 (Xinhua) — German capital Berlin has experienced more snow this month than any other December of the past 110 years, and more bitter cold is expected in the country’s east, according to the German Weather Service (DWD).

Ya Baby…..ICI Reports First Inflow Into U.S. Equity Funds In 33 Weeks!

| December 29, 2010

ICI reports U.S. domestic equity funds saw an inflow of $335 million for the first time in 34 weeks.  This compared with last week’s $2.4 billion outflow.  So after pulling money for 33 consecutive weeks, and withdrawing over $98 billion in capital from domestic equity mutual funds, the record has ended.  Muni bonds are now the […]

Is The Next European Country To Fall Italy…. As Debt Costs Approach The Red Zone

| December 29, 2010

Italy’s borrowing costs have surged back to financial crisis levels and the country is now looking like a proper member of the eurozone’s fringe, according to Ambrose Evans-Pritchard.   The yield on Italy’s 10-year bond is now at 4.86% and, combined with weakening monetary supply data, Italy now looks destined for a downturn similar to […]

Latest Comments From Gene Inger’s Daily Briefing

| December 28, 2010

Gene Inger’s Daily Briefing . . . for Wednesday December 29, 2010:   Good evening;    The ‘Insolvent Age’ . . .well-describes the overall risk faced in 2011, which if viewed with full transparency, has risk of making a so-called ‘new normal’ seem comfortable. There are warning flags galore flying; and the irony is it […]

The Wall Street Journal: Housing Recovery Stalls, Conference Board Said Consumer Confidence Fell Unexpectedly!

| December 28, 2010

So, just wondering why this is such a surprise to the media types……Incomes are down (based on taxes paid) according to Trim Tabs, and home ownership maintenance expenses are rising across the board, including real estate taxes.  The baby boomers are net sellers, not buyers.  The middle class is being squeezed. The demographic economic model is to downsize […]

Economic Modeling….It’s All In How You Count Your Cow’s

| December 28, 2010

Economic Models And Business Strategies Explained With Cows   COMMUNISM: You have 2 cows. The State takes both and gives you some milk. FASCISM: You have 2 cows. The State takes both and sells you some milk. SOCIALISM: You have 2 cows. The State takes one of them and gives it to your work-shy neighbor. […]

MasterCard’s Spending Pulse Data Shows Gasoline Demand Up 4.6% On The Week

| December 28, 2010

MasterCard Spending Pulse Data showed average gasoline price for regular at 3.00/gallon.  Gasoline spending rose 4.6% for the week and was 3.9% higher then one year ago same week. 

U.S. 111’th Congress Added More Debt Than First 100 Congresses Combined

| December 28, 2010

Wow…The 111’th Congress sure packed a wicked punch.  But we all know the old saying “records are made to be broken”…..Just wonder how long it will take to brake this one! (CNSNews.com) – The federal government has accumulated more new debt–$3.22 trillion ($3,220,103,625,307.29)—during the tenure of the 111th Congress than it did during the first […]

U.S. Changes Formula On How It Measures Long-Term Unemployment

| December 28, 2010

Hmm…… So many Americans have been jobless for so long that the government is changing how it records long-term unemployment.Citing what it calls “an unprecedented rise” in long-term unemployment, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), beginning Saturday, will raise from two years to five years the upper limit on how long someone can be […]

Doug Kass Of Seabreeze Partners….15 Surprises To Watch For In 2011

| December 27, 2010

Doug Kass: Eight years ago, I set out and prepared a list of possible surprises for the coming year, taking a page out of the estimable Byron Wien’s playbook , who originally delivered his list while chief investment strategist at Morgan Stanley, then Pequot Capital Management and now at Blackstone. Importantly, my surprises are not […]

U.S. Retirement (Broken) Nest Eggs

| December 27, 2010

The median (defined as the amount separating the top 50% from the bottom 50% but not an average) retirement account for U.S. households is $2,000 (in other words half the population has more than $2,000 in retirement and half has less).  This is why the vast majority of retirees depend on Social Security as their primary source […]

If They Wouldn’t Have Borrowed Out Of The House, Everything Would Still Be Fine….So Who Is Truly At Fault Here, The Banks Or The Borrower?

| December 27, 2010

www.zerohedge.com

The Mortgage Journey

| December 27, 2010

www.zerohedge.com

Greenlight Capital David Einhorn Says Second Financial Crisis Rolls Over Us If Interest Rates “Ever Go Up Again”

| December 26, 2010

Beware of the “Ides of March”….This makes all the sense in the world, as the second crisis will likely be bigger and more dynamic then the first one.    America is storing up a second financial crisis by keeping interest rates at record low levels, according to David Einhorn, the hedge fund manager who first publicly […]

Gasoline On A Roll To The Upside….Here Is A Breakdown Of What Goes Into Each Gallon Of Gas At The Pump

| December 26, 2010

U.S. gasoline prices hit an average $3 a gallon for the first time in more than two years, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report. But there is no oil or gasoline shortage….So inquiring minds ask how could crude oil and gasoline be at this price level given ample supplies, and a lack luster macroeconomic […]

Banks In Jeopardy Rise To Nearly 100!

| December 26, 2010

Nearly 100 U.S. banks that got bailout funds from the federal government now show signs they are close to failing. The total, based on an analysis of third-quarter financial results by The Wall Street Journal, is up from 86 in the second quarter, reflecting eroding capital levels, a pileup of bad loans and warnings from […]

Unfunded Liabilities By State…Who Is That On Top – Yep It’s California

| December 25, 2010

Europe In Trouble

| December 25, 2010

David Rosenberg of Gluskin-Sheff checks in on Bloomberg. He’s keying off comments from Barclays’ Bomb Diamond about the possibility of a Euro breakup, which Rosenberg sees as possible. It’s a matter of “when” not “if” noting that it was actually Germany that first breached its debt limits, and pointing out that the history of monetary unions […]

Cities Forced To Tap Homeowners By Raising Property Taxes…. How Else Are They Going To Pay For Exploding Workers’ Retirement And Health Costs? Inquiring Minds Want To Know!

| December 25, 2010

The new world order will see tax hikes every where, it’s unavoidable! Cities across the nation are raising property taxes citing rising pension and health-care costs for their employees and retirees.  Local officials and government workers say a confluence of factors is driving the increases, including the need to make up for staggering investment losses […]

Waiting For Santa Claus….Everyone Will Want To Watch This!

| December 23, 2010

Click here: Waiting For Santa Claus

For An Interesting Tidbit, Read Exhibit 6

| December 23, 2010

Oil Is Around $91 A Barrel, Here’s How It Effects Us

| December 23, 2010

The recent jump in crude to around the $91 area has wiped out virtually the entire benefit from the just passed payroll tax “stimulus”.  That’s just oil mind you, we haven’t even talked about the food inflation yet.   For every cent rise in gasoline,  the country loses $600 million in consumer buying power…….   And ….Every $1 rise […]

Sometimes A Picture Is Worth A Thousand (Or More) Words

| December 22, 2010

NYSE Margin Debt Continues Higher

| December 22, 2010

NYSE margin debt has surged to $269 billion showing an increase of $13 billion from the prior month.  This is the highest since September 2008 when NYSE margin debt was at $299 billion.  Stocks tumbled shortly there after as investors rushed to get out of margined positions.  So, how does that old saying go…. Fool me once, shame on […]

Houses Are Down 30+ Percent, So Why Do Property Taxes Continue To Go Up

| December 22, 2010

Nationally, property taxes now dominate local tax revenues. The problem is once the local government obtains that gargantuan revenue stream as it has, it becomes the “baseline of dependency” for all future years, and that’s exactly what’s going on now!   But there is a small ray of sunshine here.  A heads up…..Homeowners in most locales can […]

The New Normal….Let’s Call It The Real World Of Economics! Time To Get Used To It!

| December 21, 2010

Sounds like something Ross Perot might have said with his pointer in hand……Let’s call it Economics 101.  Governments will be forced to lay off workers and cut back on services, causing social unrest as the Muni issues are addressed.  “States clearly have been funding municipal governments—for now up to 40 percent of their total expenditures,” Meredith Whitney explained. “As the […]

The Free Lunch Is Over! The Steak And Wine Has Turned Into A Baloney Sandwhich With Water

| December 21, 2010

This pension issue will have to be addressed front and center very soon…..Virginia stopped requiring public employee pension contributions back in 1983, but the free lunch is now OVER!  It’s a snow ball going down hill, and we all know how big the snow ball is at the bottom.   Kick the can down the road, until one day the […]

Fed Treasury Holdings: $1,000,341,000,000

| December 21, 2010

Auh, so my calculator doesn’t go that high, come again……..In layman terms, we’re talking about a trillion dollars!

Bank Of America May Wish It Was Bank Of Some Where Else!

| December 21, 2010

WikiLeaks recently said it would target a large U.S. bank.  Bank of America was the rumored victim.  This has now been confirmed. Agence Press France is reporting: Julian Assange confirmed that WikiLeaks was holding a vast amount of material about Bank of America which it intends to release early next year.

A Letter From The Postman……

| December 21, 2010

A group of 52 business and financial luminaries have signed an open letter to U.S. Regulators (Geithner, Bernanke, et al.) on the need for national standards on mortgages. The signators are an impressive yet eclectic group.  As an example, we see Nouriel Roubini; William Dunkelberg (NFIB); Bob Eisenbeis; Chris Whalen and Jim Bianco.  Many of […]

A True Story From 1931

| December 21, 2010

On or around this day in 1931, America was spiraling into the depths of the Depression.  Thousands of banks had closed and there was a national panic that more closings might be imminent.  And large corporations announced huge layoff programs, stunning many who thought they were safe.  Those who had a job were grateful just to be […]

Cumberland Advisors Checks In With A Year End Update

| December 21, 2010

Jobs, Risk, Uncertainty & Next Year:  An Elaboration December 21, 2010 Bob Eisenbeis is Cumberland’s Chief Monetary Economist. Prior to joining Cumberland Advisors he was the Executive Vice President and Director of Research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Bob is presently a member of the U.S. Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee and the Financial […]

At The Train Station The Sign Says: Step To The Back Of The Line Please….Where Is That? How About 1.2 Miles To The Back Of The Line!

| December 21, 2010

Great Britain….Thousands of Eurostar passengers joined giant lines and were forced to wait for up to seven hours today as the Channel Tunnel rail link was thrown into disarray. Police were forced to turn away some passengers after the freezing weather conditions ruined journeys at London’s St Pancras station as speed restrictions and cancellations affected the […]

‘Epic Proportions’ Of Snow Expected In Colorado Mountains

| December 21, 2010

Southern California is looking at record amounts of rain……Interestingly, it was a cool summer and there was no fire season in California this year!

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