Monday, October 08, 2012


News Links, October 9, 2012

## Global Ponzi meltdown/House of Cards ##
Financial Fukushima: US Big Bank Derivative Bets Double in Six Years To $236 Trillion
Markets brace for earnings slowdown
"Investors are bracing for the start of what is shaping up to be the worst earnings-reporting season since the end of the recession, as a sputtering global economy and eroding corporate profit margins conspire to stop the earnings recovery in its tracks."
German Industrial Production Falls as Economy Cools
World Bank lowers China forecast amid growth concerns
IMF cuts global growth forecast; prods Europe, U.S
Depositors Turn Up Heat on Ailing Spanish Banks
Argentine retailers told to cut prices
"Argentine retailers were ordered to slash prices of commodities and basic food items as part of the government's widely publicized fight against inflation."
If you believe in alchemy, you'll like this article. -- RF
BHP Billiton to cut iron ore jobs
"BHP Billiton Ltd.'s efforts to control costs in the face of weaker demand for key industrial commodities has shifted to cutting jobs at its Australian iron ore operations, the biggest driver of earnings for the world's largest mining company."
Australia, Meet the Post-Growth Economy

## Airline Death Spiral ##
SAA's woes 'worse than feared'
"South African Airways (SAA) is in a far more serious financial position than previously thought and it is clear the airline will need much more than the R5-billion lifeline it recently and controversially secured from the government."
India May Cancel Kingfisher License

## Fault lines/flashpoints/powder kegs/military/war drums ##
Iran would need 2-4 months to amass bomb material: think tank
"Iran would currently need at least two to four months to produce enough weapons-grade uranium for one nuclear bomb, and additional time to make the device itself, a U.S. security institute said on Monday."
Afghanistan's government 'could collapse' after 2014 - report
"A new report on Afghanistan warns that the departure of Nato forces in 2014 could be followed by the government's collapse and even civil war, unless steps are taken now."

## Global unrest/mob rule/angry people/torches and pitchforks ##
Wildcat strikes up stakes in S.Africa labour game
Peru's gas pipeline at risk after rebels destroy helicopters
"Peru's sole natural gas pipeline was left without maintenance services on Saturday after Shining Path rebels destroyed on the ground three helicopters belonging to the company that runs the pipeline."
Saudi Arabia to Lead $740 Billion Oil Spending Through 2017
"Oil producers in the Middle East and North Africa plan to invest $740 billion on energy projects in the next five years, led by Saudi Arabia, according to Arab Petroleum Investments Corp."
Power outage hits 5 states in Brazil
"Fire forced the shutdown of a transformer in a substation, causing a 30-minute-long power outage in five Brazilians states, the country's Electric Energy System Operator said Thursday."

## Got food? ##
How to Avoid Genetically Modified Food
"In the United States, 70 percent or more of the foods in your supermarket directly or indirectly contain genetically modified (GM) ingredients. The illustration below shows how prevalent GM foods have become on grocery store shelves."
Oil prices, global demand push food higher

## Environment/health ##
Europe fears new epidemics, cost of vaccines
"Measles and rubella are "raging" throughout Europe and public fears fuelled by internet-driven campaigns and lack of funding are worsening the situation, delegates at the Gastein Health Forum were told."
Greenhouse gases rise with GDP, slower to fall in recession
Some readers will recall that Japan's urban expressways are falling apart. -- RF

## China ##
China must reform or risk crisis, experts warn new leader
"China risks economic malaise, deepening unrest and ultimately even a crisis that could shake the Communist Party's grip on power unless its next leader, Xi Jinping, pushes through stalled reforms, experts close to the government have warned."
China's solar industry in turmoil
"China's manufacturing capacity for solar panels has exceeded world demand, threatening financial disaster for factories and banks backing them, analysts say."
Nick Clegg: We will not accept benefits cuts without new taxes on the rich

## US ##
Calif. gasoline prices hit all-time high - twice
"California's gasoline price misery is worsening, with prices exceeding $5 a gallon at some stations."
Two Chinese firms blacklisted
"Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., warned U.S. businesses and consumers Monday not to do business with two state-controlled Chinese telecommunications businesses."
"Unbelievable Numbers" Says Former GE CEO Jack Welch; Another Look at Jobs Including Government Jobs and Self-Employment
"In two of the last three months the unemployment rate fell solely because of people dropping out of the labor force. This past month, people came back in the labor force but part-time hiring and government hiring went up even more."
Nearly half of Fannie Mae REO unable to reach market
"Only half of the previously foreclosed homes owned by Fannie Mae are either on the market or being prepared for sale. The remaining properties are currently locked away in some step of the foreclosure system."

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