Economics and Investing:

California home equity hangover: $649 billion in HELOC loans nationwide with most in California.

Two Years Later: The U.S. Economy Still Needs a Spark Plug
Two years after Lehman Brothers collapsed in a $639 billion bankruptcy and the short-term financial markets seized up with terror, we’ve backed away from the brink. But skittishness in the financial markets hasn’t gone away. It’s just taken a different form — for instance, driving gold prices up 56% from $805 an ounce on Sept. 3, 2008, to $1,253 Sept. 3, 2010.

With spot silver now solidly above $20 per ounce, and spot gold above $1,260, I hope that I will now get less flak for being a “gold bug.” Back in 2001, when I proclaimed that silver was at the beginning of a bull market, many people though that I was a loon. (Silver was then under $5.23 per ounce.) But I now feel vindicated when I see headlines like these: Stocks, Treasuries, Gold Gain on Fed Bond-Purchase Speculation.

‘Too Big To Fail’ Author Weighs In the the Financial Crisis: Then and Now. “It felt like the world was on fire,” recalls writer Andrew Ross Sorkin, whose book Too Big to Fail covers the financial crisis at its peak. Yet, he agrees, the financial world as we know it, isn’t really that different now.

Items from The Economatrix:

Gold Prices Surge to Record High

US Outlook Prompts Warnings by Japan, Australia Central Banks

Market Gains as Economic Outlook Brightens

SEC Expands Stocks Under “Circuit Breakers”

Nervous Americans Want Easy Access to their Cash

Homebuyer Tax Credit: 950,000 Must Repay

US Joint Forces Command Warns that Huge US Debt Might Lead to Military Impotence, Default or Revolution

1 In 10 Banks on FDIC Problem List