How the Next Downturn Will Surprise Us (blackeagle)
Central bankers and other regulators have largely succeeded in containing the practice that caused disaster in 2008: risky mortgage lending by big banks. But with so much easy money sloshing around in global markets, new threats were bound to emerge — in places the regulators aren’t watching as closely.
That slowing down effect is important to bear in mind as we encounter the 20th anniversary of the Russia-LTCM financial crisis of September 1998 and the 10th anniversary of the Lehman-AIG financial crisis of September 2008.
The political spectrum in the United States across the two major parties is now so narrow as to be almost irrelevant. What they argue about are cultural or social issues. But that’s a form of anti-politics. They don’t actually argue about anything of substance in terms of the economy or foreign policy. That’s why you see complete continuity between Republican and Democratic administrations.
The report says Facebook was interested in helping banks create bots for its Messenger platform, as part of a big push in 2016 to turn the chat app into an automated hub of digital life that could help you solve problems and avoid cumbersome customer service calls. But some of these bots, like the one American Express developed for Messenger last year, deliberately avoided sending transaction information over the platform after Facebook made clear it wanted to use customer spending habits as part of its ad targeting business. In some cases, companies like PayPal and Western Union negotiated special contracts that would let them offer many detailed and useful services like money transfers, the WSJ reports. But by and large, big banks in the U.S. have reportedly shied away from working with Facebook due to how aggressively it pushed for access to customer data.
Marking the 10th anniversary of the 2008 collapse, former Fed chairman Ben Bernanke and former Treasury secretaries Timothy Geithner and Henry Paulson wrote in a September 7 New York Times op-ed that the Fed’s tools needed to be broadened to allow it to fight the next anticipated economic crisis, including allowing it to prop up the stock market by buying individual stocks. To investors, propping up the stock market may seem like a good thing; but what happens when the central banks decide to sell? The Fed’s massive $4 trillion economic support is now being taken away, and other central banks are expected to follow.
We look away from the flood we know is coming. The slow seep of water down from the mountains, spreading out of its riverbed path, breaking out of creeks and cricks, rushing off the pavement of cities and heading Down East. The water swallows up crops and homes and pigs. We know this slow seep is not just water, but poverty.
Widening of the tropics is important because it could be associated with severe changes in climate, Staten said. The world’s hot, dry deserts tend to be located in bands along the northern and southern edges of the tropics, so widening of the tropics could lead to expansion of the subtropical deserts. At sea, the edges of the tropics are zones of high salinity and low marine productivity.
At first blush, last week’s deal between the Farm Bureau and the equipment dealers might look like a win for farmers. The press release describes how equipment dealers have agreed to provide “access to service manuals, product guides, on-board diagnostics and other information that would help a farmer or rancher to identify or repair problems with the machinery.” Fair enough. These are all things fixers need.
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