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  • Wall Street Breakfast: Restrictions Imposed On Citigroup's Hedge Fund Sales [View article]
    Can anyone say mission creep? I guess we won't hear much about Ukraine anymore as the US is ramping up on ISIS. A huge mistake that will likely significantly constraint ISIS but might also push them underground with a strong desire for revenge and guess where that revenge will be coming?
    Aug 22 07:45 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: Restrictions Imposed On Citigroup's Hedge Fund Sales [View article]
    This has a lot to do with internet based shopping. Three are winnes and losers, Sears, K-Mart, Target are all losers to some extent. Wal-Mart, since it has a large presence on-line not so much.
    Aug 22 07:44 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    Of course in a struggle for the officers weapon it would have been very possible for the officer to be struck by such a weapon in his eye-socket and ZERO signs of a struggle evident on the body of the deceased.

    So let us not argue about such details. The real question is when is lethal force justified? If you are being bull rushed by someone is it ok to shoot them 10 times and kill them? I don't think so and many people likely would agree.

    This is clearly a case of excessive use of force by the police and a death that did not have to happen. Are there extenuating circumstances that get the officer off the hook for a manslaughter charge, maybe.
    Aug 21 01:16 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    The incident certainly raises the discussion on when is it alright for our police force to use leathal force. Is it alright to use leathal force when hearsay indicates that there may be illegal weapons in a compound or in someones home?


    What about when an officer is attacked. Does the officer have the same right to self defense as a common citizen, or, due to being a police officer does he have to have more restraint in his use of available lethal force?


    Personally I think lethal force should be used only as an absolute exception. The officer should have defended himself and when able called for help if he needed it. He should not have used his weapon unless under imment threat of severe bodily harm (like Zimmerman when he was getting his head pounded into the concrete).

    So I think in this case the officer is likely to have some serious legal problems. Being punched is not justification for killing someone, period.
    Aug 21 12:06 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    Bob, releasing the officers name, enough said. That should not have happened until after he was officially indighted.
    Aug 21 12:03 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    Bob, you need to check your budget figures. Even eliminating the defense department doesn't balance the budget in a more normal interest rate environment.

    As to the conservative solution, it is really quite simple, reduce government benefits to the bare bones. Then as you earn additional income phase them out. Further, provide an earned income tax credit that grows as you approach full time working hours. So someone working a 40 hour week (even at multiple jobs) can make $10 and not be considered poor. To create more jobs, cut the minimum wage to $5, then ramp up the earned income credit to that $10 from 20-40 hours on a linear scale.

    Jobs created, work incentivized and welfare reduced.
    Aug 21 11:46 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    smr, everyone is focusing on what happened in the past, namely inflation. What happens in the future will destroy wealth but likely not in the form of inflation.

    So example, today your house is worth $500k, tomorrow it is worth $200k. Today your 401k is 500k, tomorrow it is $200k. Today you make $80k, tomorrow you make $40k.

    To some extend we already see the wage destruction in the middle class, so maybe that has already manifested itself. Housing crashed here to but has since rebounded (JC needs to move to SF and buy that volt!).
    Aug 21 11:41 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    IT, there is wealth destruction, we just haven't seen it yet due to extend and pretend. In the past you would see it through inflation, now it has simply been moved to a less visible form. As I have mentioned, there has been $10.7T in money sitting in banks and money market funds. That money has effectively been stolen by our government. Fortunately they have the fed to give you freshly minted dollars if you demand you money and as long as the number of people redeeming stays small everyone on the debt Titanic thinks its smooth sailing.

    Reality is the money is gone, which means there is less wealth. In Japan we saw how some of the wealth destruction can materialize through a currency devaluation. There are of course other mechanisms like market crashes or housing crashes. Japan has shown us all three now. We just need to see what the final crash looks like, which I think likely will be wages, which is again similar to inflation.
    Aug 21 09:44 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    aloha, most of the charges, not all. BofA was also doing this stuff before they bought Countrywide (the real criminal) and Merril Lynch.
    Aug 21 09:41 AM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    IT it is extend and pretend. What people don't realize is that this money that is being fabricated gets balanced out by their savings. So while in reality when you take your money from the bank you get some freshly printed dollars and everything seems normal, there is actually no money in the bank, its gone, spent already by the government. Since people still think it is there we don't see the rush on the bank. If that would happen you would see all of that money coming out of banks and looking for someplace else to hide. That would produce massive inflation of assets which we all know won't really be worth more.

    So as long as people don't realize that the government has stolen their money and will repay them back with massively inflated currency, everything is fine.
    Aug 21 09:06 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    User, don't worry, after a cold winter they will realize that there are some natural resources for the EU to exploit. Then there is always the hope that in retaliation for not embargoing Russia like the rest of the EU that the EU stop buying swiss chocolate and instead imports chocolate from Ukraine.

    P.S.: Yesterday was extremely bloody in eastern Ukraine, over 2 dozen civilians killed in Donetsk alone. Add in all of the other areas and the combatant deaths and likely close to 100 people died in one day. Now to something more important, Kim Kardashian uses an iron to get rid of her facial wrinkles.
    Aug 21 08:51 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    Japan needs to be looked at through some sort of a world currency filter, not the yen. That is the only way to get the right picture. What has happened in Japan over the last 2.5 decades is absolutely massive wealth destruction. That is the future for Europe and maybe even the US.
    Aug 21 08:46 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    Gold is dieing because there is hope of a Ukraine resolution, i.e. Putin running with his tail between his legs (well that is the media's hope, not sure that you can bank on that).

    Also, it is clear the the central bankers have figured out how to quash inflation and likely for good. So that takes away a lot of reasons to buy gold.
    Aug 21 08:44 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    blueline, yes I always hear this analogy that businesses do it so why not homeowners. The reality is that when someone makes a mortgage loan to a business the risk of default is priced in. Banks did NOT price in the risk of strategic defaulting. Indeed, if they had we would never have had the crisis in the first place. The only reason we had the crisis in the first place was that bankers screwed up and did not price in the risk, i.e. charge people more for their morgages, maybe 1-2% more would have been the right number and prevented the collapse. It certainly would have slowed the rapid rise in real-estate values.
    Aug 21 08:42 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wall Street Breakfast: BofA Expected To Pay $16.5B Mortgage Settlement [View article]
    The cost to repair has gone up and that should have raised the price level at which cars get scrapped. However used car prices have also gone up a lot and that has offset that. So now we are faced with the oldest vehicle fleet we have ever had. The average age of a vehicle on the road is approaching 12 years now and the median scrapage age is around 14. So that means a lot of vehicles are reaching the end of their useful lives which should be good for the auto business.

    Another interesting point is the damage to yearly sales that 0% financing did. Back in 2000 around 30% of retail sales were leases which gave you a lower monthly payment. When we went to 0% and extended duration financing the lease option basically vanished, dropping to under 10%. This had a follow-on effect as people were not forced to buy a new car after 3 years. So from 2002-2004 there was no impact but from 2005-2007 you were missing that 20+% of lease customers that would be forced to buy a new car. That explains the drop in unit sales during that time period quite a bit. The low was in 2009 at the height of the recession.

    Now you are starting to see leasing come back in favor as higher used car prices have again lowered the leasing costs. So over the last few years the % of retail buyers that lease has grown. Will this didn't juice car sales in 2011-2013 it will when those leasees come back after the normal 3 years and have to buy a new car so 2014-2016 will be the ramp back up from those added lease customer and that ramp can continue till we get back to that historical 30+% of retail buyers leasing.

    With scrapage and this ramp from returning leasee's the car business in the US market should be quite solid for several more years.
    Aug 21 07:33 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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