Felix Salmon

Does the SEC have teeth after all?

The SEC is all over the news today. It’s investigating Citigroup! It’s examining Charles Schwab, over the YieldPlus fiasco which we thought was settled but wasn’t! And, of course, in conjunction with Andrew Cuomo, it’s coming down on Steve Rattner like a ton of bricks:

Counterparties

A big infographic on how banks sold themselves CDOs — MortgageRates

“I dislike arguments that disparage moral intuition while inviting the clever to delight in the counterintuitive” — Interfluidity

The lessons of Andhra Pradesh

Are we ever going to get a good article on the hugely important microcredit crisis in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh? The WSJ took a stab on October 29, but the article was thin, added nothing to the FT’s earlier report, and spent more time rehearsing well-known facts about the microfinance industry than it did trying to explain exactly what was going on so suddenly and why. The WSJ didn’t even mention the precipitating cause of the crisis, an ordinance passed by the state governor on October 15 which essentially shut down a whole class of microfinance lenders.

Twitter datapoint of the day

I work for a global information company which makes billions of dollars a year selling valuable data to banks, hedge funds, and other people in the financial markets, often at very high prices: $2,000 a month or even more.

The story of Deutsche Bank’s Las Vegas casino

Alexandra Berzon has an enjoyable piece in today’s WSJ about the Cosmpolitan, the new $4 billion casino, fully paid for by Deutsche Bank, which is opening up in Las Vegas next month.

Felix TV: The fiscal solution

We’ve seen the problem, and we’ve seen why quantitative easing doesn’t seem to be much of a solution. So what is the solution? Fiscal policy, of course. But don’t hold your breath.

Gesture politics and the Fed mandate

The proposal from Bob Corker and Mike Pence to abolish the dual mandate is pure gesture politics. It probably won’t even become a bill; if it does become a bill it won’t become law; and even if it does become law it won’t actually change what the Fed does.

Bailout economics

It’s all about the bailouts today, as Warren Buffett contributes a thank-you-for-the-bailout op-ed to the NYT to run alongside the paper’s reasonably comprehensive accounting of which bailout monies have been paid back, which might be, and which won’t be. (Think banks, AIG, and Frannie respectively.)

Counterparties

What Joe Nocera has in common with Matt Taibbi: “Individually, I honestly think the biggest villain is Alan Greenspan” — NYMag