Obama Claims Country Better Off Today?

Obama Claims Country Better Off Today?

Obama claims the country is better off?  Uh, what? Last week President Obama told a small group of wealthy donors that by almost every metric, the U.S. is significantly better off under his leadership than under Bush’s. Oh dear God this is just getting embarrassing! Can we please have a little reality check here?   The […]

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Germany and Greece: An Impossible Relationship?

Germany and Greece: An Impossible Relationship?

This morning the markets in Europe rose giddily on the belief that the problems with Greece were resolved, despite the bureaucrats insistence that they were in fact, not at all. By late afternoon in Europe, it had become clear that there was no resolution, but the talks continued. I swear I’ve had breakups that seemed […]

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Shove It! A Greek Tragedy?

Shove It! A Greek Tragedy?

The headlines are once again dominated by the living Greek economic tragedy, vacillating between dire predictions of a Greek collapse and ensuing global financial calamity to ebullient, (and frankly rather ludicrous) stock market jumps of joy on hopes of a pseudo happily-ever-after. Conventional wisdom has been to lambast the Greeks with the usual damning triumvirate […]

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Greece in Hotel California

Greece in Hotel California

Greece was all over the headlines again last week as the deadline for debt talks neared. The Maastricht Treaty, which created the European Union, is starting to sound an awful like the Eagles “Hotel California,” with many in Greece left rethinking, “This could be Heaven or this could be Hell.” The treaty provided a lengthy […]

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State of the Economy

State of the Economy

The flattening of the yield curve as interest rates fall is bad news for banks that make money by borrowing short-term and lending long, yet another sector that under current conditions is a headwind for the economy. Frustratingly, the yield curve isn’t the only headwind to banks as last week, Morgan Stanley (MS) was the […]

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Banks & the Fed – Bail 'em Out then Beat 'em Up

While shoppers were watching their pennies this holiday season, I was grinching over the relationship between the Fed and the big banks as reminiscent of the abusive relationship between Ike and Tina Turner – bail them out then beat them up with an onslaught of massive fines.  According to a global banking study by the Boston Consulting […]

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Real vs Financial Economy:  Thoughts from Monte Carlo

Real vs Financial Economy: Thoughts from Monte Carlo

Last week I had the great honor of being invited to speak at the XIIth Annual International CIFA Forum, (the Convention of Independent Financial Advisors which is in special consultative status with the United Nations) in Monte Carlo. Who knows how I got invited back after speaking there last year, but when someone asks me […]

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Signs That Housing is Cooling

Signs That Housing is Cooling

First the good news, data through November 2013, released January 28th by S&P Dow Jones Indices for its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices, showed that the 10-City and 20-City Composites increased 13.8% and 13.7% year-over-year. Dallas posted its highest annual return of 9.9% since its inception in 2000. Chicago […]

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Unemployment Problems Persist

Unemployment Problems Persist

Perhaps the reason so few are saving is because the job situation isn’t exactly rosy, nor are income levels. According to the most recent report from the Bureau of Labor Statistic, the unemployment rate has dropped to 6.7% which looks on the surface to be good news. However, if you look a bit deeper, the […]

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100 Years of the Federal Reserve

100 Years of the Federal Reserve

There was a time when no one, outside perhaps the most esoteric economic geek circles, could name the current Chairman of the Federal Reserve. Those days are now long gone as the Fed has taken a much more active role in the economy and the various Fed Presidents and Chairman have evolved into media cult […]

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