Commentaries

from Rolfe Winkler:

Obama’s blowout budget

February 1, 2010

Now that the worst of the financial crisis is behind us, one would think the budget deficit might start to come down. Actually, no. Obama's proposed budget sets a new deficit record -- $1.6 trillion this year compared to $1.4 trillion last year.

from Rolfe Winkler:

Afternoon Links 1-20

January 20, 2010

Must Read -- Short sale fraud + follow-up (Olick, CNBC) Great sleuthing from Diana Olick. Sounds like outright fraud being committed by big banks. One follow up question: In many cases, the second-lien holder is also the first lien holder. How is that impacting short-sales?

from Rolfe Winkler:

Lunchtime Links 1-14

January 14, 2010

Obama to unveil plan on bank taxes (WSJ) Surprisingly this doesn't look dead on arrival in Congress, maybe because banks know that the tax -- spread over 10 years -- isn't likely to hurt very much. It's a missed opportunity to shrink big bank balance sheets.

from Rolfe Winkler:

Lunchtime Links 12-8

December 8, 2009

(Reader note: still working on the bugs....please click "continue reading" to see all the links)

from Rolfe Winkler:

SNL on the U.S./China economic relationship

November 23, 2009

"Why are you trying to do sex to me like I was Mrs. Obama!?!"

Small quibble: SNL doesn't note that the Chinese are, uh, "doing sex" to themselves by manipulating the yuan.

Playing politics with Social Security

October 19, 2009

By John M. Berry

The White House’s knee-jerk reaction to the news that inflation was so low that Social Security beneficiaries won’t get a cost-of-living increase next year was a seriously bad omen for long-term control of federal spending.

Why Russia needs America

September 21, 2009

In the wake of President Obama’s decision to scrap the U.S. missile defence shield in eastern Europe, many are pondering Russia’s response. The relationship will remain in the spotlight this week, when President Medvedev heads to the U.S. for the G20 summit. Although the precise nature of Russia’s reaction remains to be seen, it has a big incentive to improve relations. It badly needs American investment and co-operation to help solve serious economic problems at home.

Volker cuts through it

September 17, 2009

Paul Volcker, the former Fed chairman whose nerves of steel broke the back of double-digit inflation 30 years ago, shows that he’s still one of the few in government that wants to call the tough shots.  Too bad he isn’t more influential. If he were, I doubt Wall Street would be talking about getting back to business as usual.

A death panel for Citi

September 15, 2009

It’s way too soon for the federal government to contemplate reducing its considerable equity stake in Citigroup.

Obama’s AIG timidity

September 15, 2009

I’ve been pretty amazed at how silent the Obama administration has been about Robert Benmosche’s antics since becoming the well-compensated CEO of American International Group–the defacto government owned insurer.