Authored by Don Quijones, Spain & Mexico, editor at Wolf Street Here’s Why Italy’s Banking Crisis Has Gone Off the Radar For a country that is on the brink of a gargantuan public bailout of its toxic-loan riddled banking sector, or failing that, a full-blown financial crisis that could bring down the European financial system, things are eerily quiet in Italy these days. It’s almost as if the more serious the crisis gets, the less we hear about it — otherwise, investors and voters might get spooked. And elections are coming up. But an article published in the financial section of Italian daily Il Sole laysRead More →

As the Atlanta Journal Constitution points out today, the Trump administration has until May 22nd to decide whether they will continue to pursue the Obama administration’s appeal to provide subsidies to insurers who participate in the federal exchanges. Of course, any decision to remove those subsidies would likely result in yet another massive round of premium hikes and further withdrawals from the already crippled exchanges where an astounding number of counties across the country have already been cut to just 1 health insurance provider.  And, as we’ve pointed out before, higher rates = lower participation = deterioration of risk pool = higher rates….and the cycleRead More →

Since 1985, the state has provided healthcare for retired teachers through a plan called TRS Care. As of last year, 261,500 retired teachers, dependents and their surviving spouses, according to the State Comptroller. But in recent years medical costs have risen higher than what the state contributes to TRS Care leaving the fund with more than a billion dollar shortfall now. “At its creation in 1985, TRS-Care was expected to remain solvent for just 10 years, with the understanding that additional funding or benefit changes would be necessary to maintain the plan. Its funding formula hasn’t changed since 2005, however, and hasn’t kept pace withRead More →

John Podesta, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s 2016 national campaign chairman, may have violated federal law by failing to disclose the receipt of 75,000 shares of stock from a Kremlin-financed company when he joined the Obama White House in 2014, according to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s Investigative Group. Joule Unlimited Technologies — financed in part by a Russian firm —  originally awarded Podesta 100,000 shares of stock options when in 2010 he joined that board along with its Dutch-based entities: Joule Global Holdings, BV and the Stichting Joule Global Foundation. When Podesta announced his departure from the Joule board in January 2014 toRead More →

Authored by Charles Hugh-Smith via OfTwoMinds blog, No leader can reverse the dynamics of mutually reinforcing crises. Commentators seem split into three camps: those who see Trump as a manifestation of smouldering social/economic ills, those who see Trump and his supporters as the cause of those ills, and those who see Trump as both manifestation and cause of those ills. I think this misses the point, which is the overlapping crises unfolding in this decade– diminishing returns on skyrocketing debts, the demographics of an aging populace, the erosion of the social contract and the profound disunity of political elites–will continue expanding and feeding on eachRead More →

The story behind this Podesta-Russia link is explained in full gore by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog; dot connectors, Twitter diagram creators and newly minted Russia-conspiracy sleuths from sea to shining sea take note.   Since anything connected to Russia is now considered treasonous, I’ve got a great story for you to sniff out. It relates to John Podesta, but somehow I doubt you’ll be interested in this one… The Daily Caller reports: John Podesta, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s 2016 national campaign chairman, may have violated federal law by failing to disclose the receipt of 75,000 shares of stock from a Kremlin-financed companyRead More →

Despite endless streams of Fed Speakers proclaiming, in one form or another, that “we are at, or close to, full employment;” many in America – judging by the election of President Trump – are not feeling as exuberant as the jobs data implies they should be. The SF Fed itself now agrees: “the labor market may not be quite as tight as the headline unemployment rate suggests.” As we detailed previously, between 1948 and 2015, the work rate for U.S. men twenty and older fell from 85.8 percent to 68.2 percent. Thus the proportion of American men twenty and older without paid work more thanRead More →

Authored by MN Gordon via Acting-Man.com, Onward vs. Upward Something both unwanted and unexpected has tormented western economies in the 21st century.  Gross domestic product (GDP) has moderated onward while government debt has spiked upward.  Orthodox economists continue to be flummoxed by what has transpired.   What happened to the miracle? The Keynesian wet dream of an unfettered fiat debt money system has been realized, and debt has been duly expanded at every opportunity.  Although the fat lady has so far only cleared her throat (if quite audibly, in 2008) and hasn’t really sung yet, it is already clear that calling this system careening towardRead More →

Along with the student loan debt bubble and other major financial factors, the looming pensions crisis is bound to be the death of us all. Because it’s based on a future promise to pay, it has long been a benefit dangled to solve strikes and union disputes – because, in the end, it is just more debt, whether private or public. With tens of trillions in unfunded liabilities, the weight of an avalanche remains dangling over our heads. An aging population is cashing in on needed retirement benefits while the younger generations must support multiples that are unsustainable financially. Somewhere between the retiree that needsRead More →

Russia’s largest bank, Sberbank, has confirmed that it hired the consultancy of Tony Podesta, the elder brother of John Podesta who chaired Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, for lobbying its interests in the United States and proactively seeking the removal of various Obama-era sanctions, the press service of the Russian institution told TASS on Thursday. “The New York office of Sberbank CIB indeed hired Podesta Group. Engagement of external consultants is part of standard business practices for us,” Sberbank said. Podesta is one of the Democrat’s highest profile lobbyists who enjoys close personal and business connections to former Presidents Obama and Bill Clinton. John Podesta wasRead More →