Monday, July 30, 2012

Only Mario Draghi's ECB can avert global calamity before the year is out Ambrose Evans-Pritchard    Mario Draghi has promised the moon. The European Central Bank’s council had better deliver on his pledge this week. If it does not, the crisis will surely escalate out of control in August or soon after.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

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  • Des Moines Register: Doane Agricultural Services of St. Louis reported from its annual crop tour through Iowa this week that the likely corn yield will be 117 bushels per acre in Iowa. That total production figure would be the lowest total production in Iowa since the 1.426 billion bushels in 1995 and the lowest bushel per acre figure since the 84 bushels in the flood year of 1993. In 2011, Iowa produced 2.36 billion bushels of corn

  • U.S. GDP grew at a tepid annual rate of 1.5 %.

  • U.S. investors withdrew $11.5 billion from domestic stock funds. The largest weekly outflow in over two years.

  • French President Hollande and German Chancellor Merkel expressed their determination to save the euro. The two agreed that the two countries were "fundamentally attached to the integrity of the euro area" and that "they are determined to do everything to protect it".
  • Mario Draghi, the ECB president, vowed to do "whatever it takes" to save the euro within limits of its mandate. "Believe me, it will be enough," he said.

  • Sandy Weill suggested that banks should be broken up, because they are too big, and proposed a return to Glass-Steagall.

  • The Asian Development Bank expects growth in the Pacific region to expand 6 % in 2012.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Loading the Climate Dice By PAUL KRUGMAN And so it has proved. As documented in a new paper by Dr. Hansen and others, cold summers by historical standards still happen, but rarely, while hot summers have in fact become roughly twice as prevalent. And 9 of the 10 hottest years on record have occurred since 2000.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

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  • The Total U.S. Cow inventory of 39.7 million and beef cow count of 30.5 million are both the smallest ever for the July inventory report, which started in 1973. Te sharp rise in feed prices is negative short term for cattle. The herd liquidation should however be bullish in future month. Keep an eye on the charts!

  • Regarding corn and beans Arlan Suderman says, “I still don't think the trade fully grasps the significance of this year's losses, but I'm seeing a few signs that it is beginning to realize that we're dealing with something significant this time. The bottom line is the market can't fully deal with the rationing job at hand until it accepts the fact that this year's drought is a really big deal of historical significance”.
  • Corn and bean prices have hit new highs - as the drought persists.
  • Slow monsoon threatens India crops..

  • China has released a plan for the development of its new strategic industries from now to the end of 2015, according to a latest statement released by the State Council. The seven new strategic industries include energy conservation and environment protection, new information technology, biology, high-end equipment manufacturing, new materials, new energy and new-energy cars, according to the plan. The seven industries will maintain an average growth rate of more than 20 percent during the 2011-2015 period, the plan said.

  • Spain said it’s economy would shrink by 0.5% in 2013 instead of growing 0.5%.
  • The yield on Spain’s bonds topped 7%.

  • U.S. retail sales fell 0.5% in June.
  • California’s Public Employees Retirement System managed to achieve a 1% return on its money - a bit less than the 7.5% target.
  • U.S. June housing starts hit a 760,000 annual rate -- highest level since October 2008.

  • The ReykjavĂ­k District Court has ruled that Valitor, formerly known as VISA Iceland, violated contract laws by blocking credit card donations to Wikileaks, according to a press release posted on the whistleblowers' Twitter account.

  • Cameron doesn't 'see a time' when the government's austerity program will end and is poised to extend public spending cuts until 2020

  • Crude oil stocks decreased 0.8 million barrels Gasoline stocks decreased 1.8 million barrels
  • Distillate stocks increased 2.6 million barrels
  • Ethanol stocks rose to 19.6 million barrels

  • EBay’s net income rose to $692 million (53 cents per share) vs. $283.4 million (22 cents per share). This is a more than a twofold rise YoY. Revenue rose 23.1% to $3.4 billion YoY.


  • YUM revenue rose 12% -- same-store sales were up 10% in China.

  • Confcommercio said that Italy's fiscal burden has reached on average 55% of taxpayer’s incomes this year, ranking first in the world followed by Denmark (48.6 percent), France (48.2 percent) and Sweden (48 percent). Italy not only ranks above the European average, but also is much higher than Japan (30.6 percent) and the United States (26.3 percent), the report also noted.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

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  • China's economy grew at “only” 7.6% in Q2
  • Chinese central bank lowered its one-year yuan deposit rate 25 basis points

  • The euro fell to multi-year lows against a range of currencies on fears of a deepening slump in Italy and Spain.
  • Statistics released by the European Central Bank (ECB) indicated that the eurozone is in a liquidity trap, economists with a German bank said
  • ECB cut its main lending rate by a ¼% to 0.75%
  • The seasonally adjusted industrial production in the 17-member Eurozone saw a 0.6% MoM rise in May.

  • Greek unemployment rose to a new record of 22.5% in April

  • Brazil's central bank cut its benchmark interest rate by half a percentage point to a record low of 8% in the eighth consecutive rate cut this year.

  • The U.S. added a meager 80,000 jobs in June.
  • The unemployment rate was unchanged at 8.2%.

  • Australia's unemployment rate rose to 5.2% in June (Reuters) -

  • Lawmakers in North Carolina, which has a long Atlantic Ocean coastline and vast areas of low-lying land, voted  to ignore studies predicting a rapid rise in sea level due to climate change and postpone planning for the consequences.

  • Macao's gross gaming revenues for the first half of this year increased 19.8 % to 148.73 billion patacas (18.59 billion U.S. dollars)