Monday, December 19, 2011


News Links, December 20, 2011

## Global economic meltdown ##
European Unemployment Rates Suggest Pressure Cooker Will Soon Blow Sky High; UK Rejects Additional Money to IMF, Sweden Wants "Conditions" (Mish)
Europe Is Now Officially Bazooko's Circus - Italy To Provide €23.5 Billion In IMF Cash To Bailout Italy (Zero Hedge)
Italian budget in home stretch, unions on warpath
Economies: China, India Japan Face Tougher 2012 Outlook
Consumers dream of a cheap Christmas as economic reality hits hard
Gov't urged to 'get real' on GDP targets (Philippines)
Europe: UK refuses to give billions to save the euro
"Britain has refused to give billions of pounds to help save the single currency, as the world's financial watchdog warned that fresh clouds are gathering 'over European skies'."
EU Leaders Endlessly Play "Ring-Around-the-Rosie"; Finance Ministers Seek IMF Funding Deal; EU demands £25bn lifeline from the UK
Catastrophe in Europe by End of Year?
New Spanish leader pledges deep crisis cuts
"Spain's incoming Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy took aim at his country's economic woes Monday, promising deep spending cuts at all levels of government while offering tax breaks for companies."
Saab heads for scrapyard as long rescue quest fails
Most Australians worried about debt

## Fault lines/flashpoints/military ##
South Korea Ready to Intervene in Markets as Kim's Death Clouds Outlook
S. Korean military declares emergency alert after Kim Jong-il's death
PLA sends soldiers to North Korean border: human rights center
Kim Jong-il dead: Pentagon war game considers worst-case scenario
Experts see possible power struggle in North Korea
Kim Jong Il death: Powerful uncle could overshadow Kim's son
Iraq issues arrest warrant for vice president Hashemi
Saudi says its security targeted, urges Gulf unity
Medvedev on US: 'If they continue to push us around, we'll push back'
Moscow optimizes its military grouping in the south
Philippines flood victims to be buried in mass graves
Just a preview of the future. This is how authorities will be forced to deal with the millions who die of starvation, freezing, and World War III. -- RF
Russia to lease Nerpa nuclear submarine to India by yearend
U.S. Special Forces Now in Central African Republic
Syria signs Arab League peace deal
Afghanistan feels the heat of Pakistan's Nato supplies blockade
3 million Iranian families not to receive subsidies

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people ##
Protesters battle for control of Egypt's Tahrir Square
Occupy London prepares for legal action as life continues in Tent City
San Antonio police arrest 5 'Occupy' protestors
Occupy San Jose once again sets up tents at San Jose City Hall plaza
OWS marks 3-month anniversary in New York
Update: 8 "Occupy" protesters arrested at Iowa Democratic Party headquarters
Egypt clashes move into 4th day, U.S. worried

## Energy/resources ##
Pipeline caught in 'death spiral' of rising costs (Canada)
"TransCanada Corp.'s main gas pipeline is caught in a 'death spiral' of a dwindling customer base and negative market forces, according to some of its customers.
"And those customers – who include some of Ontario's new natural gas-fired generating stations – say they're being whacked with soaring tolls in the pipeline's struggle for survival."
Analysis - Costs, environmental risks may scupper Falklands oil
Short of gas (Pakistan)
"There is every suggestion that the gas crisis is going to be more acute this year than perhaps ever before. It is true we say the same thing every year, but this winter there appears to be a very real sense of panic...
"The problem, of course, is that the textile and fertiliser sector is already close to ruin."
Electricity woes costing Lebanon $6 bln a year
India's Coal Shortages to Worsen as Coal India Reduces Production Target
Perfect Storm Blows Another Solar Company Onto the Rocks
Earthquakes, Water Pollution and Increased Greenhouse Gas Emissions? Fracking - Strike Number Three?
"In 2000 shale gas was 1 percent of America's gas supplies; today it is 25 percent."
Which means that a shale gas crash could have a catastrophic impact. -- RF
OPEC Raised Exports in October on Higher Global Demand for Oil
But OPEC has little spare capacity. -- RF
A Solar Trade War Could Put Us All in the Dark
Japanese nuclear power plant affects uranium stocks
Saudi Arabia's domestic oil use at 10-year high in Oct
It is useful here to recall the Export Land Model. -- RF
Brazil's oil problem
"If the fines levied against Chevron and Transocean are any indication, grandstanding may dash Brazil's dreams of becoming an oil exporting powerhouse. After all, Petrobras can't go it alone."
Another fuel shortage in Gauteng (South Africa)
Lack of power paralyzes Coca-Cola factory
Residents fume as city reels under power crisis
"The technical snags in Haryana's two power plants have triggered an unprecedented power crisis in Gurgaon. According to officials of state-run power distribution companies, the city has never witnessed such a huge power and water crisis in recent years, especially in winters."

## Got food? ##
Soaring Oil and Food Prices Threaten Affordable Food Supply
Exclusive: Cuba sweetens pot for new private farmers
"Cuba, trying to lure people back to the land and lift food production, has modified a land lease program so that private farmers can rent more land and keep it in their family as if they owned it, farmers said over the weekend."
Food prices could rise 5% in 2012 from impact of fuel, rice scheme (Singapore)
Kingdom 'vulnerable to high food prices' (KSA)

## Japan ##
Japan refuses to stop Iranian oil imports
You know that Japan is really serious if it refuses a US demand. -- RF
A Quick And Dirty Look At Japan's Nearly ¥1 Quadrillion In Debt
Japan preparing for unexpected after Kim's death

## China ##
Southern China region faces persistent power woes -grid
Hong Kong Luxury Home Rents Reach 'Tipping Point' as Banks Halt Expansion

## UK ##
British household incomes hit by austerity measures
Psssst France: Here Is Why You May Want To Cool It With The Britain Bashing - The UK's 950% Debt To GDP

## US ##
Can We Invest Our Way Out of an Energy Shortfall? (Gail Tverberg @ Financial Sense)
Judging by this very sobering assessment, the answer seems to be no. -- RF
Three Charts That Blow The Doors Off Any Hope Of A 2012 Rally
Bank Of America Shares Hit $4.99, One-Year Low
Bank Of America: "Santa Is Not Coming", Sees 50% Chance Of Drop To 950
Missing $4,155? It Went Into Your Gas Tank This Year
Industrial Property Delinquencies Hit 22-Year High, Standard & Poor's Says
Buyer's Remorse; Record Volume of Returns Before Christmas; $217 Billion Returns Expected, Up 14%
Gallup Finds Unemployment Rises For Fourth Week In A Row, Cautions On BLS Data
Among Defense Hawks, Growing Angst About Inevitability of Military Budget Cuts
Schnitzer Warning… More Steel Sector Pain Ahead?

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