SouthAmerica: These days I wonder if it is a major requirement for all the people who work at the highest levels of the United States government that the person has to be a complete incompetent MORON.
We are at the beginning of what might be a major recession ahead of us here in the United States, and these idiots in Washington don’t have even some basic common sense.
What a bunch of incompetent losers we have today working for the US government.
”Agreement Closer for Economy Rescue Pact”
Thursday January 24, 2:11 am ET
By Andrew Taylor, Associated Press Writer
The Associated Press
Pact on Emergency Economic Rescue Near As Lawmakers, White House Make Significant Concessions
WASHINGTON (AP) -- House Democratic and Republican leaders appeared close to agreement with the White House Wednesday night on a significantly reworked package of emergency tax cuts to jolt the economy out of its slump.
At a Wednesday evening meeting, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made major concessions to drop increases in food stamp and unemployment benefits in exchange for tax rebates of at least $300 for all people earning a paycheck, including low-income earners who make too little to pay income taxes. Families with children would receive an additional $300 per child, while those paying income taxes could receive higher rebates as well, a senior House aide said.
Pelosi, D-Calif., and House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, had yet to reach agreement on a package of tax breaks for businesses after estimates showed a tentative agreement could exceed $70 billion, far more than had been expected, the aide and a Democratic lobbyist said.
Pelosi and Boehner appeared optimistic Wednesday night as they left their third extended negotiating session of the day with Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. A tentatively scheduled Thursday morning negotiating session was called off, her spokesman said, as Pelosi first needed to brief fellow Democrats on the emerging but controversial plan.
"We'll have more to say tomorrow," Boehner said. "We're hopeful."
Democratic aides said greater GOP flexibility over giving income tax relief to poor families with children -- who would not be eligible under President Bush's tax rebate proposal -- had moved the talks forward.
Asked whether agreement was near, Pelosi said, "We're moving toward that, but all the issues are not resolved." The business tax portion still being negotiated would give businesses incentives to invest in plants and equipment, give small businesses more generous expensing rules and allow businesses suffering losses now to reclaim taxes previously paid. The last item on spreading operating losses was proving to be unexpectedly expensive.
Lawmakers learned during the day that the government's deficit already would swell to $250 billion this year because of falling corporate tax revenues -- then they signaled they were willing to balloon it higher by more than $100 billion with a stimulus package.
As they met behind closed doors, Wall Street defined volatility, dropping again for most of the day before soaring to a big gain just before closing. The Dow Jones industrials ended the day up just under 300 points.
The federal deficit, which has been dropping in recent years, could reach $379 billion for 2008 -- more than twice last year's red ink -- once the costs of the economic rescue measures are factored in, said House Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt Jr., D-S.C.
"We should act, and act now, to strengthen the economy ... mindful, however, of the long-term budget challenges, the structural deficits that we face unless we act and act seriously," Spratt said.
Bush expressed optimism about quick action.
"I'm confident that we can get something done," Bush said in brief comments to reporters. "There's a spirit that says we need to take a fundamentally strong economy and help it."
The economic growth measure would add about $116 billion to the deficit for the budget year ending Oct. 1, according to back-of-the-envelope calculations by Spratt. All sides agree that the stimulus measures should be temporary.
"Whatever we do is going to have a 12-month shelf life," said House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md.
Worries about the ailing economy trumped concern over the deficit as top House leaders and Paulson tallied up the cost of various proposals for tax rebates, business tax cuts and benefit increases, including unemployment compensation and food stamps.
Pelosi pressed to make sure tax relief would find its way into the hands of lower-income earners while Boehner pushed to include upper middle-class couples with incomes of up to $130,000 or so, according to congressional aides.
The rebates are the most costly portion of an emerging $145 billion economic stimulus measure.
Bush backs larger rebates of $800-$1,600, but his plan would leave out 30 million working households who earn paychecks but owe no income tax, according to calculations by the Urban Institute-Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center. An additional 19 million households would receive only partial rebates.
Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., said negotiators were near an agreement on an overhaul of the Federal Housing Administration that would make it easier for thousands of homeowners with ballooning interest rates to refinance into federally insured loans.
The measure might advance separately of the tax relief package, however.
Both sides reached agreement to allow Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- government-sponsored companies that are the two biggest U.S. financers and guarantors of home loans -- to buy loans much larger than the current $417,000 limit, aides and lobbyists said. Frank said that lending cap might reach as high as $700,000 in areas with the highest home prices.
Pelosi's decision to drop expanding unemployment and more money for food stamps -- which many lawmakers had assumed would be included in the package -- could prove very controversial with Democratic constituencies such as unions, who were already stung by a decision to deny states more money for their Medicaid programs.
Many Democrats had pressed to extend unemployment benefits for people whose 26 weeks of benefits have run out, but Republicans resisted.
Some lawmakers expressed alarm about the stimulus package more than doubling last year's deficit of $163 billion.
"I am concerned that, in our rush to help, we will talk ourselves into a quick, feel-good hit today that will leave us with a bigger budgetary hangover tomorrow," said Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, top Republican on the budget panel.
In the Senate, Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada and Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky have agreed to stand back and let the House take the lead in the talks with the administration.
The aim is to have legislation ready for Bush to sign in just a few weeks, lightning speed for tax and spending measures that can take months or even years to win approval.
SouthAmerica: Finally the October stock market crash that I have been warning you people that was on its way it has become a reality and have materialized, and we still have 3 more weeks to achieve a complete stock market meltdown – the mother of all stock market meltdowns.
The financial markets are spinning completely out of control and PANIC is spreading like wide fire. The stampede is getting louder and louder as the entire herd got spooked and they are destroying everything that is on their way.
Now quoting from our discussion on this forum from a year ago:
October 16, 2007
SouthAmerica: I guess it is getting to the point that only God can help.
At the end of the day the truth is the stock market in the United States is way overdue for a major stock market crash like the one in 1929.
October 16, 2007
SouthAmerica: When we talk about major stock market crashes we are talking about the United States. We are talking about the crash of 1929 and also the mini-crash of 1987.
When the shit hits the fan in the United States it will be a big stink around the world.
Basically today the US stock market is ripe for another meltdown.
One thing we know for sure - Americans prefer the month of October to stage these massive meltdowns.
It could be the crash of 2007 or the crash of 2009.
The stock market crash is coming but the question is: It will be in October of 2007 or in October of 2009 or at any time in between?
SouthAmerica: Talking about Panic and financial markets meltdown – the current market meltdown it was supposed to happen in October – you guys are 3 months behind schedule. Wall Street is supposed to have its market crashes in October. You guys on Wall Street can’t keep even your schedule on target anymore.
The Panic button has been pushed around the world in the financial markets.
It is time for major damage control.
Ben Bernanke probably it will inject more liquidity into the US financial markets – maybe another US$ 500 billion dollars or even more….Who knows…
He can also cut the fed funds rate at least another half point.
Welcome to La La Land and more government intervention – and the usual Blah, Blah, Blah about the virtues of a superior free markets system.
January 22, 2008
SouthAmerica: Reply to Makloda
It is not my fault that today Wall Street can’t keep up even one of its major traditions - October market crashes.
SouthAmerica: The article said: “The declines came on the one-year anniversary of the closing highs of the Dow and the S&P. The Dow has lost 5,585 points, or 39.4 percent, since closing at 14,164.53 on Oct. 9, 2007. It's the worst run for the Dow since the nearly two-year bear market that ended in December 1974 when the Dow lost 45 percent. The S&P 500, meanwhile, is off 655 points, or 41.9 percent, since recording its high of 1,565.15. U.S. stock market paper losses totaled $872 billion Thursday and the value of shares over all has tumbled a stunning $8.33 trillion since last year's high.”
The stock market is going to continue to decline and in no time and the value of shares will reach the $ 10 trillion dollars in paper losses – a figure higher than the current US GDP for 2008.
The article also said: “GM, one of the 30 stocks that make up the Dow industrials, fell $2.15, or 31 percent, to $4.76, while Ford fell 58 cents, or 22 percent, to $2.08.”
There is good news here – after the US government nationalizes GM and Ford then these stocks are going to be replaced in the Dow Jones Index with stocks with better prospects for the future and will give the appearance that the Dow Jones index is doing better than the reality.
“Dow plunges 679 to fall to lowest level in 5 years”
By TIM PARADIS
Associated Press – October 9, 2008
NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks plunged Thursday, sending the Dow Jones industrial average down 679 points — more than 7 percent — to its lowest level in five years. Stocks took a nosedive after a major credit-rating agency said it might cut its rating on General Motors and Ford, further rattling investors already fretting over the impact of tight credit on the economy.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index also fell more than 7 percent.
The declines came on the one-year anniversary of the closing highs of the Dow and the S&P. The Dow has lost 5,585 points, or 39.4 percent, since closing at 14,164.53 on Oct. 9, 2007.
It's the worst run for the Dow since the nearly two-year bear market that ended in December 1974 when the Dow lost 45 percent. The S&P 500, meanwhile, is off 655 points, or 41.9 percent, since recording its high of 1,565.15.
U.S. stock market paper losses totaled $872 billion Thursday and the value of shares over all has tumbled a stunning $8.33 trillion since last year's high. That's based on figures measured by the Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Composite Index, which tracks 5,000 U.S.-based companies' stocks and represents almost all stocks traded in America.
Thursday's sell-off came as Standard & Poor's Ratings Services put General Motors Corp. and its finance affiliate GMAC LLC under review to see if its rating should be cut. The action means there is a 50 percent chance that S&P will lower GM's and GMAC's ratings in the next three months. GM has been struggling with weak car sales in North America.
S&P also put Ford Motor Co. on credit watch negative. The ratings agency said that GM and Ford have adequate liquidity now, but that could change in 2009.
GM, one of the 30 stocks that make up the Dow industrials, fell $2.15, or 31 percent, to $4.76, while Ford fell 58 cents, or 22 percent, to $2.08.
"The story is getting to be like that movie 'Groundhog Day,'" said Arthur Hogan, chief market analyst at Jefferies & Co. He pointed to the still-frozen credit markets, and Libor, the bank-to-bank lending rate that remains stubbornly high despite interest rate cuts this week by the Federal Reserve and other major central banks.
"Until that starts coming down, you'll be hard-pressed to find anyone getting excited about stocks," Hogan said.
"Everything we're seeing is historic. The problem is historic, the solutions are historic, and unfortunately, the sell-off is historic. It's not the kind of history you want to be making."
The Dow ended the day at its lows, finishing down 678.91, or 7.3 percent, at 8,579.19. The blue chips hadn't closed below 9,000 since June 30, 2003, and haven't closed at this level since May 21, 2003.
The Dow's 2,271-point tumble over the last seven sessions is its steepest seven-day point drop ever. Its seven-day percentage decline of 20.9 percent is the largest since the seven-day plunge ending Oct. 26, 1987, when the Dow lost 23.8 percent.
That sell-off included Black Monday, the Oct. 19, 1987 market crash that saw the Dow fall nearly 23 percent in a single day.
Broader stock indicators also tumbled Thursday. The S&P 500 fell 75.02, or 7.6 percent, to 909.92, while the Nasdaq composite index fell 95.21, or 5.5 percent, to 1,645.12.
The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies fell 47.37, or 8.7 percent, to 499.20.
A wave of fear about the economy sent stocks lower in the final two hours of trading after a volatile morning in which major indicators like the Dow and the S&P 500 index bobbed up and down.
The Nasdaq, with a bevy of tech stocks, spent much of the session higher but eventually declined as the sell-off intensified. Still, its losses were less severe because of the relatively modest drops in names like Intel Corp. and Microsoft Corp.
On the New York Stock Exchange, declining issues came to nearly 3,000, while fewer than 250 advanced.
The sluggishness in the credit markets that triggered much of the heavy selling in markets around the world since mid-September appeared little changed Thursday following days of efforts by the Federal Reserve and other central banks to resuscitate lending.
Libor, the bank lending benchmark, for three-month dollar loans rose to 4.75 percent from 4.52 percent on Wednesday. That signals that banks remain hesitant to make loans for fear they won't be paid back.
The Fed and other leading central banks this week lowered key interest rates to help unclog the credit markets and promote lending to help the global economy. While a rate cut can take up to a year to work its way through the economy, the move was aimed as a boost to investor sentiment.
"We're stuck in a morass and I think it's going to take quite some time to come out of it," said Stephen Carl, principal and head of equity trading at The Williams Capital Group.
Demand remained high for short-term Treasurys, a refuge for investors willing to trade modest returns to protect their money. The yield on the three-month Treasury bill, which moves opposite its price, fell to 0.58 percent from 0.63 percent late Wednesday. Longer-term debt prices fell, with the yield on the 10-year note rising to 3.79 percent from 3.65 percent late Wednesday...
Jsmooth: The real question is....Have you put your money where your mouth is???? if you've been short for the past year nice work, if not, your just another "talking head"....
October 10, 2008
SouthAmerica: I am not a talking head as you put it. You can check my postings on this forum going back to May 2005 when I started posting on the Elite Trader Forum.
I have been recommending to all my friends who asked my opinion what they should do with the money that they have available for investment – mainly the older friends. As I mentioned on this forum a number of times also – there is too much risk in the financial markets and I have been suggesting that my friends invest in U.S. Government securities - "TIPS" - for safe keeping.
I have been recommending to Brazilians going back to December 2001 that they convert their investments in US dollars into euros - because I expected that the US dollar was going to decline versus the euro.
If you had the chance to read many of my postings then you know that I worked for Sir John M. Templeton for many years and basically that is where I got my education about investments.
I was very young on these days, but they used to allow me to sit on all the meetings that they were discussing investments strategies and what was going on in the stock market. We had people from Wall Street coming to our office in Englewood all the time to give lectures about their views on the stock market and the economy – but the reality was those guys came around to get an education instead, and most the time these Wall Street types opinions were not worth the time of this outstanding group of people that had been around John M. Templeton for over 25 years. Most of the time these Wall Street types looked like a bunch of amateurs when compared with the real pros.
That’s where I got the foundations of my education about economics and investments. But for the last 15 years I have been doing my own thinking and I am not a hostage to anyone intellectually and my thinking adapts and evolves as our dynamic world moves forward. That’s why I confuse everybody because I don’t think in terms of ideology, only in terms of creating solutions to fix problems, or a new way of doing things.
When you think out of the box you drive the people who are inside the box crazy.
After reading one of my articles someone asked me: "Are you able to suggest financial refuge for those of us who are small landowners and investors?"
All I can say is that the risks are too high here in the US today. I would not invest any money in the stock market. The housing bubble is ready to burst. The only place that makes sense to park your money is in U.S. Government securities - "TIPS"
Below is brief information about these US government securities. Better safe than sorry.
Cash is king when the S… hits the fan. If you have cash on hand, after a major market decline, then you can pick up the pieces for a fraction of its previous price.
NOTE: Above are the predictions that I made right after George W. Bush was re-elected. Most of you think that they are silly predictions, and full of gloom and doom. Do yourself a favor make a copy of these predictions and check them again by November 2008 (The new presidential election here in the US), and you will see that I was right in the nose.
I am so confident about my predictions that I am putting them in writing for entire world to see it, as I did in the past. (And I did identify myself, and signed my real name)
October 10, 2008
SouthAmerica: You also can check what I wrote 4 years ago about what was going to happen in the global financial markets right before the US presidential election in November 2008. It is impossible for anyone to be more precise than that. Read that article a see for yourself.
I wrote the following article 4 years ago in November 2004.
It’s 2008. The US Has Dragged the World into a Depression.
Written by Ricardo C. Amaral
Brazzil Magazine - Saturday, 12 February 2005
“Following is an example of the type of newspaper article that they will be reading at the time of the next United States presidential election in November of 2008.
Headlines - October 31, 2008
Here we are one week away from the 2008 United States presidential election. What a ride Americans, and the rest of the world had in the second term of the Bush administration. Some people did not believe it was possible for George W. Bush to do a worse job on his second term, than he did in his first.
A number of events came together to form the perfect storm that pushed the globe into a worldwide depression. The current worldwide depression is getting worse by the day, and it is having a more profound impact than the depression of the 1930’s.
…the market dynamic of all these events combined to cause a major institutional collapse in the derivatives market, and that started a domino effect in the entire financial system causing a massive meltdown.
Panic among the major holders of US dollar also contributed to the stampede like we had never seen before - and at the end, Chernobyl looked like nothing when compared with the final meltdown of the US dollar, and US economy during the summer of 2008.”