Nov 14, 2011, 12:21 pm EDT
The so-called Congressional supercommittee — a group of 12 politicians with the unenviable task of reaching a compromise on federal spending and our massive budget deficit — is running out of time.
And so are American consumers and investors hoping for a deal to bolster a struggling economy and prove the stock market rally is here to stay.
Only about a week is left for the group of six Republicans and six Democrats to craft a plan that will slash $1.2 trillion from the U.S. deficit during the next decade. If the debt committee can’t reach a compromise, deep and automatic cuts to Medicare and defense spending will trigger — which either individually or in tandem could be very damaging to an already ailing American economy. Read
Nov 10, 2011, 2:28 pm EDT
When pressed at last night’s GOP presidential debate, Mitt Romney argued that the U.S. has enough problems and should let Europe sink or swim on its own. Unfortunately, Uncle Sam can’t afford to do any such thing.
Like it or not, the U.S. is not an island unto itself. The economic troubles of seemingly faraway lands such as Italy and Greece eventually wash up on our shores. That’s especially true of Italy, which is the world’s eighth-largest economy. According to The State Department, Italy was America’s 16th-largest trading partner in 2010, with total bilateral trade of $42.7 billion. Republicans ignore this economic reality at their own peril.
During Wednesday night’s debate, Romney said: “We don’t want to step in and try to bail out their banks and bail out their governments. My view is no, no, no. We do not need to step in to bail out banks in Europe or even banks here that have Italian debt.” Read
Nov 10, 2011, 12:00 pm EDT
Few things — if any — in Washington, D.C., make sense these days.
This is the exactly the case as evidenced by the recent Senate hearings on Oct. 19, titled “Market Microstructure: Examination of Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs).” The purpose of the meeting was to analyze the impact of ETFs on the financial markets.
Why have financial markets been so volatile? What are the reasons and causes behind the “Flash Crash” on May 6, 2010? Does anybody know? The Senate figured it would call in some experts to get to the bottom of it, but instead of answering questions, the Senate found a good scapegoat: the U.S. exchange-traded products or ETP market, which encompasses ETFs, and has around $1 trillion in assets under management. Read
Nov 9, 2011, 10:59 am EDT
Election Day 2011 is in the books. You may think it lacked fireworks, considering how big the prize will be in 2012, but here are some choice political headlines from yesterday’s votes across the U.S.:
Ohio voters repealed a controversial labor law limiting union rights.
Early results show a political newcomer ousted an entrenched and polarizing Republican in the Arizona state Senate, and Democrats in the swing state of Virginia saw their majority in the Commonwealth’s upper house erode.
Voters in Mississippi rejected a controversial ballot measure that would have defined human life as beginning at fertilization.
These are all weighty developments. Political junkies are probably already chewing on the juicy details, and a host of other outlets will be dissecting these and other specific issues at length over the next few days as results are finalized.
But the most important thing about Tuesday’s vote is, of course, what it means for the White House race in 2012. Read