Friday, July 29, 2011


News Links, July 30, 2011

## Global economic meltdown ##
US debt crisis: US inches towards catastrophic default
U.S. Stock Market Ends Its Worst Week In A Year
ADB warns on China slowdown
"China's growth faces downward risk in the coming months amid global economic uncertainties and fast-rising domestic inflation, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) said on Thursday."
IMF Chief Warns America on "Exorbitant Privilege", Brings Back Flashbacks To de Gaulle And The London Gold Pool
Fuel index surges to 12.2%; non-food items index up (India)
European debt crisis: Spain downgrade threat unsettles markets
Think US debt is high? Take a look at Europe's most indebted nations.
China Should Buy U.S. Equities Instead of Treasuries, Economist Xie Says
Moody's downgrades six Spanish regions
Sovereign debt honeymoon comes to crashing end
India May gold sales up massive 161% yoy - gold rush continuing
China Gold Demand May Surpass India This Year, Goldcorp Says
Contagion Spreads To Sleepy Denmark, As CDS Surges By 20% Overnight
Cambodia edges away from U.S. dollar
"Cambodia, one of Asia's fastest-developing frontier economies, is gradually letting go of the U.S. dollar's hand in favor of its own currency, the riel — and some investors welcome the shift."
Corporate profits' share of pie most in 60 years: Profits soar even as GDP and people limp along
Yet another article on why corporate earnings are far better than expected despite the rapidly deteriorating economy. How are you faring? -- RF
Economists marking down second-half growth views

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
Analysis: Pirates eye share of Gulf of Guinea riches
"Pirate attacks on ships in the Gulf of Guinea are threatening one of the world's emerging trade hubs and are likely to intensify unless the region's weak naval and coastguard defences are beefed up soon."
Turkey's military chiefs quit ahead of key meeting
"Turkey said on Friday its top four military chiefs were all seeking retirement, in moves that appeared to reflect a deep rift between the secularist military and a government with roots in political Islam."
S Korea lodges protest with Japan in islands dispute

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people ##
Cairo activists vow unity in mass protest
Syrian protests and state violence expected to escalate during Ramadan
Tens of thousands protest in Yemen amid stalemate
"Tens of thousands of protesters turned out in cities across Yemen Friday to call for the ouster of President Ali Abdullah Saleh in a remarkable show of determination after six months of demonstrations and armed clashes that have failed to topple the embattled leader."
Israel rent protests underscore middle class frustration
Israeli doctors protest working conditions

## Energy/resources ##
Study: Iraq not prepared to meet global oil demand (Houston Business Journal)
"A new study by Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy has concluded that Iraq might have trouble meeting the world's rising oil demand.
"The report, 'Iraqi Oil Potential and Implications for Global Oil Markets and OPEC Politics,' said that the Iraqi government might have set unreasonable production goals considering the country's infrastructure problems, social tensions and electricity shortages."
Anglo Warns of Tight Commodities Supply
China Urges Power Plants to Increase Thermal Coal Imports
"China, the world's biggest energy user, asked power plants to increase coal imports to ensure maximum generation to meet summer demand.
"Major power stations in China held a total 65 million metric tons of thermal coal inventories as of July 27, equivalent to 16 days of consumption, the National Development and Reform Commission said on its website today."
Japan Spot LNG Purchases Climb to 33-Month High After Quake
Preparing for post-peak (South Africa)
Power shortage hits Punjab industries hard in Pakistan
Conservation: There Is No Alternative
Pemex now 4th place as global oil producer
Saudi Arabia's Exports of Natural Gas Liquids Drop 35% in May

## Infrastructure scavenging ##
40 reels of copper stolen from Wake Co. Justice Center site
Thieves stripping wire from Old Town's vintage street lights
"Thieves have been targeting the old-style street lights in Tacoma's Old Town and other neighborhoods, stealing copper wire and darkening the streets. Since April, police have received more than 20 reports of the wire theft. Thieves have ripped off an estimated $70,000 worth of copper wire."

## Got food? ##
Now Kenya stands on brink of its own famine
Corn Imports by China May Gain to Record on State Re-Stocking, Hog Herds
'Food prices higher compared to last year' (KSA)

## Intelligence/security/internet/systemic breakdown ##
Anonymous claims to have hacked defense contractor ManTech
Researchers Expose Cunning Online Tracking Service That Can't Be Dodged
"Researchers at U.C. Berkeley have discovered that some of the net's most popular sites are using a tracking service that can't be evaded — even when users block cookies, turn off storage in Flash, or use browsers' 'incognito' functions.
"The service, called KISSmetrics, is used by sites to track the number of visitors, what the visitors do on the site, and where they come to the site from — and the company says it does a more comprehensive job than its competitors such as Google Analytics."
TSA readying new behavior detection plan for airport checkpoints
It Just Doesn't Work: Why New Tech Products Are Increasingly Unsatisfying

## Japan ##
Economy to contract 0.5%, ADB says
Japan's core consumer prices up 0.4% in June on higher utility bills
Nintendo posts deep loss, shares plunge
"Nintendo posted its latest quarter's dire results, causing traders to dump the stock. The sell-off sent the stock down more than 20 percent."
Nintendo Stock Rout Costs Billionaire Yamauchi $300 Million in Single Day
Japan's ANA posts losses in Q1 on quake
Over 680,000 hotel bookings canceled
"Over 680,000 guests canceled reservations at inns and hotels in Fukushima Prefecture through the end of June due to the ongoing crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant."
Japan Snaps Back With Less Power (WSJ)
Japanese, in Shortage, Willingly Ration Watts
Japan PM announces nuclear reduction plan
Japan steel majors yet to recover from quake impact
Gov't denies online, Twitter censorship over nuclear crisis
'Credibility shot to pieces' / Latest utility scandal also sullies govt nuclear safety agency
180,000 urged to evacuate due to floods in Niigata, Fukushima
Japan's megabanks show mixed earnings
Electronics Parts Firms Suffer In 1st Qtr, See Recovery In Full Year
Panasonic to sell Sanyo operations to Chinese firm
Over 1,550 tons of highly radioactive sludge found in 5 prefectures
Decontamination delayed / TEPCO fails to meet goal in removing radioactivity from water

## China ##
Admission of design flaw in China rail crash raises more questions
Angry families mourn China train crash victims
Police, media allow China crash victims' families to vent anger
A Cold Winter Ahead For China's E-Commerce Industry Amid Overspending On Advertising
Hang Lung Profit Drops 75% as Hong Kong Tames Housing

## UK ##
Knife crime and gang violence on the rise as councils reduce youth services
"UK cities should brace themselves for a summer of gang and knife violence as the impact of cuts to youth services takes hold, experts are warning."
Savers desert the stock market
"The amount of money placed in investment funds by savers has fallen by up to 90 per cent in recent months, figures show, as investor confidence hits lows not seen since the depths of the recession three years ago.
"Instead, savers are rushing to put their money in perceived 'safe havens', with sales of gold funds rising by nearly 60 per cent last week."
Ministry of Defence to axe 7,000 more civilian jobs
Metal theft is not a 'victimless' crime
"According to the Energy Networks Association (ENA) there has been more than 7,000 incidents in the past year leading to four fatalities and up to 31 injuries."

## US ##
Boehner Deficit Plan Passes: Here Is What Happens Next
Senate rejects House debt-ceiling bill
Deal or no deal, our AAA rating is toast
Moody's: Boehner and Reid bills won't cut it
"Neither of the debt ceiling bills before Congress would meaningfully alter the country's debt trajectory and thus won't bolster the United States' chance of preserving its AAA rating, a key rating agency said Friday."
Apple now has more cash than the U.S. government
Shortage of drivers looms for U.S. trucking industry
"The U.S. Department of Transportation says the current shortage will grow to 200,000 drivers by next year, and two million truck driving positions will need to be filled by 2018."
Housing sector suffering skills shortage
"THE housing industry is still suffering a shortage of skilled labour, an industry group says, even though data for the June quarter suggests a slight oversupply of workers."
Virginia State Police strained by trooper shortage
Bloggers' outlook for economy? Glum.
"A survey of economic bloggers reveals pessimism about the economy. The number of respondents predicting job growth fell by 20 percent in a quarter."
US economy 'has barely budged': 1.3 percent growth in GDP
Rahm Emanuel: Chicago Finances Are Even Worse Than Everyone Thought
Banks bulldoze houses, despite millions being homeless
Homeownership Falls to Lowest Since 1998
Return of 20% Home Down Payments Looms
Merck To Cut Up To 13,000 Jobs, Reports 2Q Net Gain
Poverty draft: A Weak Economy Is Good For Military Recruiting
Layoffs May Worsen if Economic Growth Doesn't Pick Up
Chart of the Day: The Cost of Insuring Treasuries Rises
'Aftershock' Book Predicts Economic Disaster Amid Controversy
Insiders Selling at Unusually Fast Pace
'Great Recession' even deeper than thought
Ten Signs The Double-Dip Recession Has Begun
I repeat: This is not a double-dip, just a continuation of the crash. -- RF
Great American Stores Starving For Customers
Big Tech's Hiring Binge Has Small Impact on Jobs

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