The recent decision by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to begin holding press conferences may be one more indication of the increased influence of Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas). The Federal Reserve has long ignored the public and conducted its proceedings in cloister, but the Wall Street Journal reported April 21 that Bernanke will hold the Fed's first scheduled press conference ever after Wednesday April 27 Open Market Committee meeting.
The price of one ounce of gold exceeded $1,500 yesterday, and immediately the media was filled with explanations. Jan Harvey, writing for Reuters, said gold was benefiting from “the threat of a downgrade to the United States’ triple-A credit rating this week and fresh worries over euro zone debt [that] fueled fears over the outlook for both the dollar and the euro.”
The University of Texas decided this week to take physical possession of some 664,000 ounces of gold it has bought over the past year, a quantity valued at nearly $1 billion as gold passed $1,500 per ounce Wednesday.
When the federal government took over General Motors in July of 2009, it was “the only way to avoid an economic calamity,” according to President Obama.
Stuffed full of $50 billion of taxpayers’ money, GM began to revive, a little. It had lost an amazing $103 billion over the previous five years, partly by acceding to union demands for generous compensation packages (including payments to workers even when the plants where they worked weren’t even running!), and partly by misreading market conditions and their competition.
Each year, American taxpayers lose anywhere from 20 to 50 percent of their income to the federal and state government in taxes, with the additional cost of filing taxes averaging approximately $20 billion annually. However, those figures pale in comparison to the 20 shocking tax-related facts put together by Business Insider, ones that will reportedly “make your head explode.”
As the supporters of President Barack Obama have complained about tax cuts for the rich during the ongoing budget debate, one group of Americans has escaped their notice: the 45 percent of Americans who will pay no federal income tax at all for 2010.
Despite the White House’s contentions that the United States economy is improving, Standard & Poor’s recent decision to change its outlook on U.S. fiscal health over the next two years from “stable” to “negative” tells a different tale. Besides the obvious impact such an announcement would have on the economic recovery, as well as the stock market, it also appears to play a role in the current debate over a potential raise of the debt ceiling.
The Competitive Enterprise Institute released a report today entitled Ten Thousand Commandments: An Annual Snapshot of the Federal Regulatory State, compiled by Wayne Crews, which reveals that the cost to Americans for complying with federal regulations far surpasses the amount of the federal budget deficit.
According to the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, the global economy is "one shock away from a “full-grown crisis.” In a weekend-long meeting at the World Bank building in Washington, D.C., global leaders discussed the global economy and the financial struggles that lie ahead.
There are different ways of calculating unemployment. The data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics culls out those who are not seeking employment, which may include people who no longer need to work (because they have retired, their spouse has found a good job, or because their financial situation improved.) Those Americans no longer seeking work, however, may also include those who have simply given up trying to find a job because the market seems hopeless.
It was President Richard M. Nixon, a favorite of the neoconservative establishment, who announced in his first term that "We're all Keynesians now," indicating that the old Republican bible of balanced budgets and a limited role for government in the marketplace was dead forever. Perhaps a future President — no doubt one who, like Nixon, got elected by preaching the virtues of free markets and small government — will look back at the Bretton Woods II Conference and announce grandly: "We're all Sorosians now."