Economics and Investing:

The War against Cash, Part II – Sent in by G.G.

o o o

Your tax dollars at work, laundering illicit drug money: Bal Harbour to Caracas: Millions in drug money. One must ask: Cui bono?

o o o

Items from Professor Preponomics:

U.S. News

The Credit Crunch is Back: Banks Scramble to Collateralize Loans to Record Levels (Zero Hedge) Key Words are JUST IN CASE. From the Article: “… suddenly banks don’t want any risk from residual loan exposure which they can’t offload, and as a result are demanding companies pledge assets and otherwise collateralize whatever loans they issue (via bank syndication) “just in case.””

The Big Flop of the US Economic Recovery (Business Insider) From the Article: “And as for that cheap money, there’s evidence that companies used at least some of it to finance share buybacks, thus boosting shareholder value through nothing but financial engineering.”

The Post Crisis Disorder (Market Watch) Let the lessons of the past not be forgotten… From the Article: ““Part of the reason growth has been slow is post-crisis disorder. The financial crisis was so bad. People saw their friends lose their job, lose their house, take a big pay cut…”

International News

Ontarians Urged Voluntarily to Pay More Taxes to Cut Province’s Debt (Zero Hedge) From the Article: “Ontario officials are asking that ‘patriots’ voluntarily donate their tax refund or write a cheque to defray the province’s massive debtload.”

Puerto Rico’s Brain Drain (CNN Money) Demographic changes act on economies as powerful forces both with lead-time and lag-time effects. From the Article: “Puerto Rico is in the midst of what its governor calls a ‘death spiral'”.

Taiwan is Facing Huge Problems in the Coming Years (Business Insider) Here come the changing demographics – again. From the Article: “The plight of young workers such as Tsai highlights a serious problem for Taiwan which has gone from a young and vibrant Tiger economy to aging and unsteady in just two generations…”

Personal Economics and Household Finance

The Death of the American Pension: Shifting the Retirement Burden from Employers to Workers Has Created an Enormous Financial Crisis (My Budget 360) Get out of debt. Reduce your cost of living. Develop savings in various forms. Incorporate self-sufficiency to the greatest degree you can in life going forward. From the Article: “The pension has undergone a slow and painful death at a time when millions of baby boomers are retiring.”