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Oct 11, 2011
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Oil trader, stock investor variance is opportunity

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Economic fear has taken a heavier toll on U.S. oil company shares than on crude itself. Either there are bargains among the stocks of oil explorers, or commodity investors are too bullish. The difference of opinion ought to mean there’s room to make money.

Sep 29, 2011
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BBC ersatz trader has serious markets message

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aC19fEqR5bA[/youtube]
Wall Street now has its equivalent of a reality TV star. A clip from the BBC of a self-described trader admitting to dreaming of financial doom as a money spinner has spread like wildfire. The Gordon Gekko wannabe doesn’t work for a Wall Street firm but his vulgar amorality offers a description of trading that has struck a chord with a public still smoldering over bank bailouts.

Ersatz trader Alessio Rastani wasn’t a big name in finance. He was nobody until this week. Still, he has some claim to represent the primitive Id of traders everywhere. His obvious indifference to the human suffering caused by financial collapses and economic downturns — in this case the crisis facing European nations — seemingly shocked the public, not to mention BBC presenters who let him rant ad nauseam.

Sep 21, 2011
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IMF financial crisis indicator bodes ill for China

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The International Monetary Fund has a new crystal ball of sorts. The lender has found a measure of credit growth that could predict crunches. It makes China look precarious and heralds turbulence elsewhere, too.

Sep 6, 2011
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China may challenge U.S. for shale supremacy

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

China has a chance of challenging the United States for shale supremacy. So far, only the United States has significantly exploited domestic reserves of shale gas. But China’s state oil major Sinopec is now taking shale seriously, and lacks many of the roadblocks that have held developers in other countries back.

Sep 2, 2011
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Obama’s smog backdown won’t help sick U.S. economy

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

President Barack Obama’s environmentally-minded backers have every reason to feel let down. In blocking a new Environmental Protection Agency rule on smog, the White House has bowed to critics in Congress and industry who said new air quality rules would kill jobs.

Aug 30, 2011
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Fluctuating gas estimates needn’t freak investors

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Bad news for natural gas wildcatters is often music to the ears of environmentalists. So opponents of fracking — the controversial gas extraction method — pounced on sharply lower government estimates of the gas contained in the Marcellus shale surrounding New York’s aquifers. If the economic prize is far smaller than previously thought, they argue, why take the ecological risks? But investors shouldn’t be alarmed. Even by ultra-conservative reckonings, there’s still up to 109 years of current production.

Aug 27, 2011

Mother Nature threatens another mark on markets

(The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.)

By Christopher Swann

NEW YORK (Reuters Breakingviews) – Mother Nature is making her mark on the market yet again. Days after a rare earthquake shook Wall Street a more serious disturbance looms in the form of Hurricane Irene. The storm may still fizzle out. But it’s heading for a region with $12 billion of daily economic output and could cripple finance’s capital when investors are already jumpy.

Aug 16, 2011
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Over-reaction to BP Gulf spill costing U.S. jobs

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

U.S. oil regulators may have swung from gung-ho to too cautious. Painfully slow drilling approvals mean America could be missing out on 230,000 jobs — and tax revenue, too. Safety matters. But with unemployment and the deficit top national concerns, red tape should be kept in check.

Aug 16, 2011
via Breakingviews

Fretting frackers restrain economic opportunities

By Christopher Swann
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Critics of hydraulic fracturing contend its hazards have been downplayed and the benefits exaggerated. A new U.S. report suggests just the opposite. Yet until safety concerns are tackled, as with a proposed cleanup fund in New York, the potential of this energy source won’t be fully realized.

Aug 16, 2011

Solar firm’s demise signals gray industry forecast

By Christopher Swann

NEW YORK, Aug 16 (Reuters Breakingviews) – Onetime investor
darling Evergreen Solar, among the first U.S. green energy
companies to go public, just went bankrupt, victimized by a
global supply glut. Growing Chinese competition and waning
European subsidies mean the solar sector will probably get
darker before the dawn.

Full view will be published shortly.

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    • About Christopher

      "I am a columnist at Thomson Reuters focusing on the energy industry and hedge funds. Prior to this I worked at Bloomberg and the Financial Times."
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