Senate Panel Advances Whistleblower Reforms (richcabot)
Grassley highlighted a provision he has long sought to ensure that government employees who are removed from sensitive positions as a means of reprisal for disclosures have an avenue for redress at the Merit Systems Protection Board. “Absent this change, whistleblowers in a so-called ‘sensitive’ position may be disqualified from their work, without any way to challenge the decision,” he said, citing a 2013 court ruling allowing agency managers to reassign such employees, the subject of a letter Grassley wrote to President Obama. “The government may also classify entire swaths of jobs as ‘sensitive’ to skirt whistleblower protections.”
Even Britain’s most enthusiastic European Union supporters would not argue that Europe has been quite so helpful to their country, of course. But as chance would have it, Ms. O’Neill was heaping her abuse on Europe in a spot that has been a particularly enthusiastic recipient of European largess over the years.
The Great Banking Lie (Tiffany D.)
The banker in the deputy minister’s office was trying to convince me to accept an arrangement that would have forced my nonprofit housing company to hand over management of our loan portfolio to a commercial bank. He’d convinced his friends in the government that this would help protect the investment it was about to make in my company.
We focus in on David Tepper’s big bets in Williams Partners and Energy Transfer Partners. Next we discuss what bond duration means and its implications going forward. We take a look at an interactive bond calculator that shows changes in bond prices given a change in future interest rates.
What Copper Says About the Economy (Tiffany D.)
China’s slowing economy bears much of the blame. Its demand for the red metal slowed to a trickle in recent quarters. In past years, roughly 40% of all the red metal produced by the world’s miners was bought by China’s raw commodity importers.
But with copper prices down nearly 40% in the last two years (and more than 50% since the 2011 peak), copper traders have already discounted that information. It’s not “new” to anyone involved in the global marketplace.
My assessment of the big picture is that the Industrialized World and a large part of the Developing World or Emerging World are in a difficult period, in a down cycle. Structural issues force growth patterns further south, and we are having difficulties in continuing the prosperity growth that we have enjoyed for so many decades, particularly in the ‘80s and ‘90s and early part of 2000. That has all changed now.
Jim’s Mailbox (reflector)
I asked the Federal reserve management this morning your key question. They said in unison that we, the Fed, need to show our confidence in the USA economy by increasing interest rates and therefore confidence in the Federal Reserve’s consistent level of economic and employment judgement.
Under the guidelines from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — the watchdog agency set up in the wake of 2010 banking legislation — lenders will be required in many cases to verify their customers’ income and to confirm that they can afford to repay the money they borrow. The number of times that people could roll over their loans into newer and pricier ones would be curtailed.
The Price Of Public Money (jdargis)
In recent years, an ever-smaller percentage of taxpayers have checked off the box on their 1040 forms to authorize that $3 go into the fund. But, says Anthony Corrado, a Colby College professor who specializes in presidential campaigns, the fund now stands as “the last life raft of what was once the flagship of reform.” Everyone agrees the system is badly broken. Today, the question is whether it should be wheeled into the shop for a total remodeling or hauled off to the scrap yard.
John Rubino is the founder and manager of the popular financial website DollarCollapse.com. Mr. Rubino is the co-author, with GoldMoney’s James Turk, of The Money Bubble and The Collapse of the Dollar and How to Profit from It.
Exxon was among the very few oil industry majors that reported a profit for last year, despite the oil price rout that plunged many in the red. Now, all managers know that shareholders are strongly attached to the bottom lines of the businesses they invest in, but Exxon’s management seems to have neglected the change in investor sentiment lately, especially after the signing of the Paris Agreement, which stipulates a limitation of global warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial levels.
Mangrove trees store up to five times as much carbon as other trees, which makes mangrove forests one of the most carbon-rich habitats on the planet. Recent scientific reports confirm the importance of the mangroves: They act as virtual carbon-scrubbers, taking CO2 out of the atmosphere.
Gold & Silver
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