Economics and Investing:

Feds foresee $30 trillion debt, blame looming tax hikes and Obamacare – G.G.

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America Will Spend More on Taxes than Food, Clothing, and Housing Combined (Graphic). So much for the land of the free. We are all serfs now. – H.L

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Items from Professor Preponomics:

US News

The Fed Passes the Buck: Blame Oil and China (Mises) This is a highly recommended reading and an outstanding discussion of money supply inflation. Excerpt: “What many people today call inflation or deflation is no longer the great increase or decrease in the supply of money, but its inexorable consequences, the general tendency toward a rise or a fall in commodity prices and wage rates.”

Saudis “Will Not Destroy the US Shale Industry” (The Telegraph) An interesting story about investment strategy, the changing landscape of oil industry technology, the possible future of U.S. shale and more… Excerpt: “groups with deep pockets such as Blackstone and Carlyle will take over the infrastructure when the distressed assets are cheap enough, and bide their time until the oil cycle turns.”

Failed Talks Raise Specter of Biggest Default in Puerto Rico Crisis (New York Times) There comes a time when debt is simply too great to be repaid and creditor losses are both imminent and unavoidable. Excerpt: “Negotiations to restructure roughly $9 billion of the debt of Puerto Rico’s power company collapsed late Friday, raising the prospect of the biggest default yet in Puerto Rico’s deepening debt crisis.”

International News

Saudi Aramco Chairman Says IPO Could Be Open to International Markets: Arabiya TV (Reuters) Oil. Oil. More oil. Excerpt: “An initial public offering of Saudi Aramco, the world’s biggest oil company, could be on the local or international markets but would not include Saudi energy reserves….”

Saudi Arabia Seeks Foreign Non-Oil Investors as Crude Slumps (Reuters) Excerpt: “Saudi Arabia aims to at least double annual inflows of foreign direct investment (FDI) over the next 10 years by focusing on new sectors such as mining, health care and information technology….”

Japan: The World’s 3rd Largest Economy is Sliding – Badly (Business Insider) The Japanese economy is struggling. Excerpt: “Given its track record for surprising markets, along with signals from the European Central Bank that it too may loosen monetary policy in the months ahead, a further expansion to the Japanese central bank’s stimulus program cannot be ruled out given mounting disinflationary pressures at present.”

Norway’s Biggest Bank Calls for Country to Stop Using Cash (International Business Times) Excerpt: “Today, there is approximately 50 billion kroner in circulation and [the country’s central bank] Norges Bank can only account for 40 percent of its use. That means that 60 percent of money usage is outside of any control.” The article continues… “There are so many dangers and disadvantages associated with cash, we have concluded that it should be phased out….”

Personal Economics and Household Finance

16 Things People Do When They Start the Debt Snowball (Dave Ramsey) Excerpt: “Making the decision to eliminate debt from your life is one of the smartest things you can do for yourself and your family. When it gets difficult and you doubt yourself, stay the course and find encouragement by reading and listening to others who have been where you are today. Your debt-free scream is closer than you think!”

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