October 24, 2014

8 Predicaments of Oil


A person might think that oil prices would be fairly stable. Prices would set themselves at a level that would be high enough for the majority of producers, so that in total producers would provide enough–but not too much–oil for the world economy. The prices would be fairly affordable for consumers. And economies around the world would grow robustly with these oil supplies, plus other energy supplies. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to work that way recently. Let me explain at least a few of the issues involved.

Utilities Shine in Market Sell-off

By Richard Stavros for Investing Daily 
While many portfolios were battered by the market’s recent selloff, which was just shy of formal correction territory, the Core Holdings in Utility Forecaster’s Growth Portfolio did a remarkable job of holding their value. In fact, our Core Holdings not only preserved wealth, they delivered growth, outpacing all of the broad indexes.

Natural Gas: What's Cooking?

By Rabah Arezki via iMFDirect 

Natural gas is creating a new reality for economies around the world.  Three major developments of the past few years have thrust natural gas into the spotlight: the shale gas revolution in the United States, the reduction in nuclear power supply following the Fukushima disaster in Japan, and geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine.

October 23, 2014

Does Raising the Minimum Wage Hurt Employment? Evidence from China


Raising the minimum wage is a polarizing issue. One side worries that raising it will lower employment. The other side downplays the impact on employment and plays up the positive impact on the living standards of the poor. Both sides are able to cling to their beliefs as the evidence, much of which comes from high-income (“advanced”) economies, is mixed.

Consequences of Fed's Free Money: Growing Fear Among U.S. Bankers

By Wolf Richter at Wolf Street

Something is changing about the perception of the Fed’s free-money policies. While we’ve lambasted them for their nefarious effects on the real economy and the inequality they produce, Wall Street, the prime beneficiary, has been bombastically gung-ho about them. And the mainstream media have praised the Fed’s “bold action,” as it’s called, at every twist and turn.
But now even Wall Street is getting cold feet. The official warning shot came from Fed Chair Janet Yellen, who admitted suddenly that “the extent of and continuing increase in inequality in the United States greatly concern me.”