Mr. Green Shoots in an orange jumpsuit?

June 29, 2009

Economist James Hamilton was pretty offended by the rough treatment of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke last week at the hands of some U.S. politicians. But when he put up a defense of the Fed chief on his blog, he got an earful from readers who were critical of the U.S. central bank and suspicious over its role in the financial crisis and last year’s bank bailouts.

U.S. state budgets battered by recession

June 26, 2009

Eighteen months into the worst recession in decades, and the pain of the downturn is reaching into nearly every U.S. state, city and municipality.

Oil, the U.S. dollar, and those green shoots

May 26, 2009

This sounds awfully familiar. Oil prices have risen sharply from a March trough, while the U.S. dollar has fallen 10 percent against a basket of currencies. A bad 2008 flashback? Not quite.   

from Raw Japan:

Spring blossoms or just a break from winter?

May 20, 2009

It's official: Japan's economy shrivelled at a record pace in the first quarter.

Needless to say the 4.0 percent contraction in GDP (an annual rate of 15.2 percent, if you speak American) from January to March was not pretty -- especially when you see that the pain has spread from Japan's big autos and tech factories to the broader economy.JAPAN-ECONOMY/

What goes down must come up

May 1, 2009

Like every recession before it, this slump will end. Some day. JPMorgan economist Bruce Kasman thinks that day may come sooner than expected.

Don’t let ‘green shoots’ stop the stimulus

April 30, 2009

The Federal Reserve should not interpret signs of moderation in the U.S. recession as a reason to stop its emergency measures to heal the economy and financial markets, according to Payden & Rygel economist Thomas Higgins.

Recessions are so hard on the rich

April 24, 2009

The global recession is taking a severe toll on luxury goods, with LVMH — owner of Dom Perignon, Louis Vuitton and De Beers — reporting sharp declines at its wines, spirits, watches and jewellery divisions.

Welcome to the “He-cession”

April 17, 2009

As men bear the brunt of the economic downturn, could the so-called “he-cession” hold a silver lining for the opposite sex?

More Americans expect to work until they die

April 16, 2009

If you were wondering what two years of wealth destruction have done to the American psyche, the Employee Benefit Research Institute has your answer.

Green shoots, Easy Rider edition

April 16, 2009

OK, so a nearly 10 percent drop in U.S. sales is nothing to crow about, but it sure beats a 19.6 percent fall. Harley-Davidson’s stock is jumping today — and has more than doubled since March — because of stronger-than-expected earnings and a much smaller sales decline in its biggest market.