World economy

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U.S. Debt Ceiling: What if There is No Deal?

THE CORNER | Negotiations over a Senate plan to reopen the U.S. government and extend the debt ceiling were placed on hold, then renewed on Tuesday evening. Rhetoric and accusations between republicans and democrats are intensifying, as the fateful day approaches. Will the U.S. default on its obligations?


Political reality ignores Nobel winner’s wisdom

WASHINGTON | By Pablo Pardo | Robert Schiller has always been an advocate of a moderate government intervention in financial markets. He also criticised the Federal Reserve’s Quantitative Easing (QE) because he considered that asset prices are not among the areas of central banks. However, political reality seems to go in the opposite direction of the new Nobel winner.

Ungovernable America

SHANGHAI | By Andy Xie via Caixin | A minority enraged at another expansion of the U.S. government will eventually cause a default, ending the dollar’s dominance and making gold dearer.

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Three Trends Changing Our World

MERRILL LYNCH | Powerful global trends — economic, political, environmental and social — are reshaping our lives and creating new investing opportunities as well as unanticipated risks.

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What are Conservative Experts Saying About Breaking Through the U.S. Debt Ceiling?

WASHINGTON | By Mike Konczal via The Next New Deal | There was a fantastic piece in The Atlantic back in 2000 about psychiatrists dealing with people who wanted to have their limbs cut off because it would make them feel more like themselves to be amputees. The doctors’ big dilemma was whether or not to treat “apotemnophilia” as a diagnosable mental illness. If they engaged with it as a mental illness that existed and was recognized by the medical community, they ran the risk of encouraging more patients to identify with it.

Asia, Anxious Over U.S. Shutdown

NEW YORK | By Ana Fuentes | The U.S. shutdown drama has set off alarm bells in Asia. Beijing and Tokyo, which together hold more than $2.4 trillion in American Treasuries, are putting pressure on its creditor to end its political rough house. If Washington is unable to honor its debt obligations it would damage the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency and bring chaos to global markets. America’s status in Asia seems also to be losing steam -and boosting China’s influence-.

[NOTE: This illustration from Liu Rui appeared on Oct 10 at the official Chinese newspaper Global Times English edition]

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Janet Yellen: “Honored” to Become Next Fed’s Boss

THE CORNER | As expected, U.S. President Barack Obama appointed Janet Yellen as the Federal Reserve’s next leader, the first woman in the 100-year-history of the central bank. Among her first words: “More needs to be done to strengthen the recovery,” even though progress has been made, and: “too many Americans still cannot find a job and worry how they will pay their bills and provide for their families.” Were those hints about how she will deal with QE? Although she is considered a dove, some analysts believe that is a bit overstated. Anyway Obama called her “tough”,  joking that it was not just because she was born in Brooklyn.