Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 4/23 - Austerity Endangers Spain's Roads, Russia Pressures Ukraine On Gas

Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 9:33 AM

Economy

Puerto Rico considers legalizing marijuana and prostitution to jumpstart economy

Nearly 370 different ideas to dig the government out of $70 billion in debt were submitted, and lawmakers have picked out 156 of them for further consideration. According to the Associated Press, the proposals range from eliminating various government agencies to cutting down the number of public holidays.

Idaho payday loan interest rates highest in nation at 582%

But if the borrower can’t pay that full lump sum, which typically takes up more than a third of the borrower’s next paycheck, Bourke said, the borrower renews for another $55 fee, getting onto a never-ending cycle. “They go back and they borrow the money again in order to make ends meet,” he said.

New report warns that millions of pensioners face living on less than minimum wage (UK)

According to the grim report by savings and investment firm LV, a fifth of women and 12 per cent of men who are within five years of retiring have no private pension and will rely solely on the state.
These people will see their income fall by three-quarters on average to around £110 a week.

Greece austerity caused over 550 male suicides, study finds

Antonakakis, a Greek economics lecturer, said he had been prompted to look into a potential link between austerity and suicide rates after media stories and reports of friends of friends dying from suicide.

Hundreds of thousands of Greeks apply for 'social dividends'

A figure of €2.5bn would be more than three times the €800m the government had originally estimated, but almost all of the political opposition has argued that the notion of a primary surplus is a fiction cooked up by a government that has not only trimmed the books savagely but failed to include factors such as state debts to suppliers.


Mayors push for Illinois pension cuts this year

State statistics show police and fire retirement funds have an average of 55 percent of the money needed, down 20 percent the past two decades. Mayors say part of the problem has been legislator-approved "pension sweeteners" with no additional money to pay for them.

Comptroller: Illinois has $7 billion in unpaid bills

Now, the comptroller is showing off where your state tax dollars are going. She has included statistics in the tax return that you receive from the state. The sheet shows that at the end of 2013, the state had $7.6 billion in unpaid bills. It also showed that the state had more than 73,000 unpaid bills.

Brazil Economists See More Inflation, Less Economic Growth This Year

The 100 respondents in the survey raised their outlook for inflation at the end of this year to 6.51% from 6.47% last week. It was the seventh consecutive increase in the inflation view for the end of this year and the economists' forecast now is above the central bank inflation target.

Austerity endangers Spain's road users

At least 35 people were killed on Spanish roads over the latest Easter break, up from 26 in 2013.
“Spanish roads are facing unprecedented deterioration and only a sudden change of tack in the 2015 budget can prevent a debacle,” said Juan Francisco Lazcano, president of Spain’s AEC, presenting a report on the state of the Spanish highways.

Fed's low-interest-rate policies cost savers $758 billion, study says

Inflation and low returns on deposits have led bank customers to lose more than $100 billion in purchasing power in each of the last five years, said MoneyRates.com, which provides consumers with information about bank rates, investing and personal finance.

Finance Ministry says state debt set to reach 52.7 percent of GDP this year (Ukraine)

Ukraine's state debt in 2014 will increase by Hr 219.6 billion, or 37.6%, to Hr 804 billion, or from 40.2% of gross domestic product (GDP) to 52.7% of GDP, the Ministry of Finance has forecast.

Russia Pressures Ukraine on Gas as Biden Pledges Support

Russia will make Ukraine prepay for gas unless it starts paying down the debt it has accumulated through March, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said today in the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, in Moscow. “Gas for cash,” he said.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 4/22/14

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

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5 Comments

saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jul 30 2009
Posts: 4238
Wendy S. Delmater's picture
Wendy S. Delmater
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 13 2009
Posts: 1988
Oh, come ON...

From that last link by Saxplayer, on wedding costs.

This year, guests are expected to spend an average of $592 per wedding, up 10% from $539 per wedding last year and a 75% jump in just two years, according to details of a new American Express survey of 1,500 Americans released Wednesday.

Guest costs of $592 each? Plus gift? What planet do these people live on??? I got married 5 years ago. Let me see. Wedding party costs included 2 new suits from Men's Wearhouse for two of my sons, and we had two receptions - one in SC & one in NY - so people could avoid travel, and folks that came a distance stayed with relatives (with three exceptions,and they shared a room.) .One person flew cross country, the rest drove - almost all local driving, too. Gifts were whatever the person wanted to bring. Guest clothes were whatever people wanted to wear. My maid of honor already had the gown.

We were making a life commitment and thrilled to have our friends and loved ones attend. Why make it hard for them to afford? This was not a fundraiser, a tit-for-tat elaborate night on the town in exchange for elaborate gifts. In my experience, most weddings are not. Market Watch had better check with regular folks, too, not just those who grow rich off the backs of 1%er's weddings. Or in-debt-up-to-their-eyeballs 1%er wannabes.

PS Our the cost for the entire wedding was $2,500. That included feeding 60 people, the dress & alternations, an ice cream wedding cake, flowers, and a buddy who did a great job on our photos for $200 - all expenses.

HughK's picture
HughK
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Mar 6 2012
Posts: 764
Not news, but still made my blood run cold

Hi all,

I was just reading a little on the Haber Process (or Haber-Bosch Process).  While I was already aware that a very large percentage of our total food production is dependent on energy-intensive fertilizers, I found my blood run a bit cold upon reading this pair of sentences:

Fertilizer generated from ammonia produced by the Haber process is estimated to be responsible for sustaining one-third of the Earth's population.[6] It is estimated that half of the protein within human beings is made of nitrogen that was originally fixed by this process...

Source: The Haber Process Wikipedia

A little sleep now, then a renewal of keeping calm and carrying on with possibly quixotic responses to such a situation.

Cheers,

Hugh

Jump u

Nervous Nelly's picture
Nervous Nelly
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Nov 23 2011
Posts: 209
New Wedding Trend For the Already Indebted Young

Wendy you're from the older reasonable generation that has nothing to prove.

I keep hearing about young already indebted couples, needing to get married down south in Dominican Republic etc..... New hot trend for the want to be.  What about close family members that are obliged to follow and can't afford it? 

I work with Italians and I've  had my share of their outrageous weddings but at least I didn't have to book a week trip for two to the islands plus gift. I would refuse to participate.

NN

 

phecksel's picture
phecksel
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: May 24 2010
Posts: 204
Co-Worker about 10 years ago

Co-Worker about 10 years ago was committed to over 25k before he finally called off the wedding.  I don't remember the final straw but it was nuts.

My wife and I got married at my house, we hired a minister off the internet, and she was awesome.  Held the reception at the local Moose Lodge, hired a local caterer, and had an open bar.  If we spent 2,500 I'd be shocked.  People still talk about it today!  Funny story, the Moose Lodge wanted somebody to square up the alcohol bill that night, and I said nobody is going to write a check that night, tell me how much deposit you want.  We went back and forth for several weeks before they finally relented.  They were concerned because I was specifying premium liquors and they didn't want to get stuck.  We did the value plan on everything except the booze :)

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