Category Archives: Economics

Big Banks’ Biggest Foe Says It’s Time to Break Up

As president of the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank, Richard Fisher has little in common with the remnants of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

A former investment banker with degrees from Harvard and Stanford, Fisher appears on the surface to be a voice of the establishment. He espouses faith in markets. His silvering hair is slicked back. His dark wool suit is cut conservatively.

Read more at The Fiscal Times…

Economy expanded in recent weeks

Economic activity across the United States expanded at either a moderate or modest pace in recent weeks with consumer spending picking up, the Federal Reserve said on Wednesday, suggesting little change in terms of the recovery’s strength.

The U.S. central bank painted a cautiously positive picture of an economy gathering steam across its 12 districts, although businesses and consumers were wary due to uncertainty over fiscal policy and conditions on the other side of the Atlantic.

Read more at Reuters…

Why Eight Senators Voted Against the ‘Cliff’ Deal

Eight odd bedfellows emerged from the Senate’s early morning vote Monday on a major tax and spending compromise aimed at averting the worst impact of the fiscal cliff.

While 89 senators voted in favor of the measure, five Republicans and three Democrats voted against it, risking the possibility of sending the economy back into recession. They viewed the deal as highly flawed, although they came to their conclusions from opposite points of view.

Read more at The Fiscal Times…

Consumer Credit in U.S. Rose More Than Forecast in October

Consumer credit in the U.S. increased more than forecast in October, led by another jump in borrowing for student loans and autos.

The $14.2 billion gain followed a revised $12.2 billion advance in September, Federal Reserve figures showed today in Washington. The median forecast of 36 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a $10 billion October rise.

Read more at Bloomberg…

Less debt-limit wiggle room in 2013

Washington policymakers will have less wiggle room to hammer out a debt-limit agreement than they did when they struck last August’s eleventh-hour accord, according to new analysis.

Read more at The Hill…

Americans continued paring household debt in third quarter

Americans continued cutting back on household debt in the third quarter of the year as declining mortgage balances outpaced rising student and auto loans, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said Tuesday.

Read more at The Washington Post..,

Is the Coming Debt Bomb Explosion a Real Threat?

Add NASDAQ’s Robert Greifeld to the list of the CEOs who believe that the growing federal deficit is an existential threat to the country.

Read more at The Fiscal Times…

Retailers’ Thanksgiving Deals Cut Black Friday Sales

Thanksgiving Day openings and midnight deals at retailers from Target Corp. (TGT) to Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) drew U.S. shoppers out earlier than ever, trimming spending on Black Friday at stores. Online shopping surged.

Sales on the day after the Thanksgiving holiday in the U.S. fell 1.8 percent from last year to $11.2 billion, according to a report yesterday from ShopperTrak, a Chicago-based researcher. That compares with a 6.6 percent gain a year earlier. Online shopping on Black Friday rose 26 percent to exceed $1 billion for the first time, research company ComScore Inc. said today.

Read more at Bloomberg…

American manufacturing is coming back. Manufacturing jobs aren’t.

The discussion of American manufacturing is often a muddled one, steeped in nostalgia for a bygone era and accompanied by a certain misty-eyed conviction that it is a sector in ceaseless decline.

A new study from the McKinsey Global Institute published Monday morning adds some welcome clarity. In 184 pages, the in-house think tank of the global consulting giant presents a picture of manufacturing as among the most dynamic sectors of the U.S. and global economies, driving higher productivity and standards of living. But it also shows that what we usually think of as a traditional manufacturing job isn’t coming back.

Read more at The Washington Post…

Higher taxes the easier way

AMERICA’S presidential election was supposed to be a head-clearing referendum on the size of government. It was not: voters split their vote, giving Barack Obama a second term and Republicans in the House of Representatives another big majority. Yet in one respect the election has clarified matters. Mr Obama has long argued that repairing America’s finances will require raising more tax as well as cutting spending. Influential Republicans, most importantly including John Boehner, the Speaker of the House, now appear to agree.

Read more at  The Economist…

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