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European Quantitative Easing Hinges On… German Vacation Spending?

Posted on April 8, 2014

spring-break

Whether or not the European Central Bank will take the quantitative-easing plunge is on the minds of investors around the world, including in the U.S. But in the end, the decision, or at least it’s timing, could revolve around German holiday-makers and the prices they pay for their spring vacations, argues Standard Bank’s Steven Barrow. […]

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Data Confirm: Earthquakes Not Good for Boosting Output

Posted on April 3, 2014

data

Tyler Cowen links to a paper by Johannes Wieland. The following excerpt from the paper should give you some insight into the state of formal economics: Standard sticky-price models predict that temporary, negative supply shocks are expansionary at the zero lower bound (ZLB) because they raise inflation expectations and lower expected real interest rates, which […]

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Medium-Term Treasury Yields Rising Quickly

Written by Robert Murphy on March 21, 2014

Treasury-Yield-Curves-Yr-over-Yr

On a conference call today with some people in the financial sector I made sure everyone was aware of this: I think a lot of casual observes (i.e. not the bond traders obviously) just think about the fed funds rate, and maybe the really short maturity Treasuries. But as the chart above shows (from here), […]

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Market Seems Bullish, But Bearish Conditions Are Certainly Lurking

Posted on March 11, 2014

Bull-and-Bear

The stock market in recent years has performed dismally. Of course, you’d never know that by reading the headlines, which have been celebrating the fifth anniversary of the bull market that began on March 9, 2009. Yet if you expand your historical perspective by just 18 more months — to the October 2007 bull market […]

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An Inexpensive State For Retiring On The Beach

Posted on March 8, 2014

Alabama-Beach

Retirees seeking the retirement trifecta — golf, the beach and warm weather — often flock to pricey places like Hilton Head, Palm Beach or Santa Barbara. But sugar-sand beaches, sunshine and some of the best golf in the nation can be had at a much lower price in Alabama. The northern part of the state […]

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Crimea Crisis Cools Off, Stocks Begin to Rally

Posted on March 4, 2014

Crimea-Standoff-Cooling

Russia’s ruble rebounded from a record low while stock-index futures in the U.S. and Europe advanced after a report that President Vladimir Putin had ordered troops back to bases after military exercises concluded amid tensions in Ukraine’s Crimea region. Gold fell with oil. The ruble strengthened 0.7 percent against the dollar at 7:23 a.m. in […]

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China is Falling Behind The Curve in Employing Young Work Force

Posted on February 22, 2014

Chinese-Youth

Youth unemployment has created “a generation at risk” according to the International Labor Organization, with worldwide youth unemployment forecast to rise to 12.8 percent by 2018. But these headline figures do not necessarily tell the real story given the discrepancies among different parts of the world. In the developed economies, the youth unemployment rate – […]

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What Do Obamacare and Sochi Olympics Have In Common?

Posted on February 14, 2014

Obamacare-Sochi

I know what you’re thinking when you read the headline to this post: “How in the world can Obamacare and the Sochi Olympics have anything in common?” Well, from a practical standpoint, they don’t. However, when you look at them as ego-driven political maneuvers that have cost billions and backfired somewhat spectacularly, we start to […]

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Unemployment Applications Rising Again

Posted on February 13, 2014

Unemployment-Line

Applications for jobless benefits increased by 8,000 for the week ending Feb. 8, bringing the total to 339,000, up from last week’s revised figure of 331,000, the Labor Department announced Thursday. The four-week moving average, a “less volatile” figure, increased by 3,500, bringing the total to 336,750, down from the previous unrevised average of 333,250. […]

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