Blogroll Me! How This Old Brit Sees It ...: Enigmatic American Economy Extracts ...

18 December 2006

Enigmatic American Economy Extracts ...

Maybe you know more about money than we do, since we readily confess that we never seem to have enough of the stuff. And whenever we do manage to get our hands on any extra, it doesn't usually stay there for long.

So, who the hell are we to try to explain anything financial to anyone?

Anyway, we're not officially licensed for lobbing about financial advice -- be it either of the free, or the properly bought & paid for variety.

Better then that we let folks do their own adding-up and figure a few things out for themselves, eh?

However, here's a starter-trio of really recent, US dollar related news reports we reckon are well worth reading.

Dollar dropped in Iran asset move

The move could have implications for the oil market

Iran is to shift its foreign currency reserves from dollars to euros and use the euro for oil deals in response to US-led pressure on its economy.

In a widely expected move, Tehran said it would use the euro for all future commercial transactions overseas.

More here at link.

And then there's this one.

US deficit heading towards record

High oil costs have been boosting the cost of products such as petrol

The US current account deficit has kept widening, signalling that the world's largest economy is still having to foot a massive bill for energy imports.

The deficit was $225.6bn in the three months to the end of September, up from a revised $217.1bn in the previous quarter, the Commerce Department said.

That pushed the total for the first nine months of the year to $655.9bn, well on course for an annual record.

The deficit's size has raised concerns about the state of the US economy.
Find the full piece here.

And can you believe this? Moreover, can you say 'Melt-Down'?

Mint bans melting coins - now worth more as liquid than loot.

Chicato Sun-Times

WASHINGTON - Given rising metal prices, the pennies and nickels in your pocket are worth more melted down than their face value, and that has the government worried.

U.S. Mint officials said Wednesday they were putting into place rules prohibiting the melting down of 1-cent and 5-cent coins, with a penalty of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000 for people convicted of violating the rule.

Because of the prevailing prices of metals, the cost of producing pennies and nickels exceeds the coins' face value.
Read the rest of this remarkable report right here.

Phew. While we've often heard the phrase re; money not being worth the paper it's printed on -- this report about US coins not now being worth the metal they're cast from, is a first for us.

It's a good job we're not financial whiz-kids, otherwise we might start wondering. And that might even lead to worry -- which, unlike dosh, we definitely don't need any more of.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not a money expert either - but you don't need to be to realise what's happening here. Like a lot of things going on in the US right now, it's all going to end in tears -- floods of them.

10:51 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard the bottom's falling out the US housing market too. Things ain't looking good, eh?

11:21 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This looks interesting. Europe doesn't seem worried over what might happen in the US.

Eurozone 'to withstand world dip'

Eurozone growth is not stellar, but it is seen staying strong and steady

The Eurozone economy is strong enough to withstand weaker US growth, higher German taxes and a dip in exports next year, the European Commission has said.

The eurozone contains the 12 nations using the single European currency and is forecast to grow by 2.6% this year.

More at link.

11:35 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I say economicaly isolate the US completely. They've been acting like they're soooo different to the rest of the world for sooo long that the rest of the world should say "Ok, you win. You ARE different. Now eff off altogether and get on with it on your own. Lets see how long you last if we all withdraw all co-operation on EVERYthing.

1:34 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't be too harsh on ALL Americans, kiwi. Remember that Bush & Co wasn't elected per say ... he was selected. And don't forget all the black-box, vote rigging.

2:42 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Great Depression tells us that you cannot isolate a nation as large as the US. If its economy falls, it will take a lot of the world with it. Fewer buyers of French wine, fewer tourists in Britain (returning to their roots, as I have done). Fewer buyers of German cars, fewer art lovers and fine diners in Italy.

But I am sure there are ever larger structural effects.

That is why after WWII there was such a thing as the Bretton Woods conference with Lord Keynes of Britain, at the mountain aerie in New Hampshire (still impressive after all these years, and with plaques on the doors where the economic superstars slept and where they met).

The Bush administration has demonstrated hostility to all such comings together of nations as peers. They have played to a base which historically has about being sore losers (the Lost Cause sentiments of the Civil War being mere teardrops in a bucket of historical outsider thinker --- read Sen. James Webb's "Born Fighting - How the Scogts-Irish Shaped America") to understand the circular logic which leads to fruitless wars and emotional investment in them by generations of young Americans from the red states, predominantly, and from the West to which they emigrated after WWII.

If we fail economically, if more Katrinas are in the offing as well as more Iraqs, this will only gratify the sense of f-you in a certain crowd. Losing is winning. Poverty is riches. Bush is a poke in the eye to your enemies, whatever else the cream-faced loon may be.

Perhaps the wind is shifting though. Perhaps the cussedness is going over to the Democrats, led by our Joan of Arc, Ms. Sheehan.

We dare be poor for a' that.

4:12 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Will this-just-in news help or hinder things?

US sees jump in producer prices

Wholesale price inflation contrasts with recent consumer inflation

US wholesale inflation registered its biggest increase in three decades in November, prompted by higher gasoline prices, official figures show.

The producer price index, which measure the cost of goods from US factories, farms and refineries, rose 2% last month, well above forecasts.

The US Labour Department figures saw the core index - which exclude volatile food prices and energy - rise 1.3%.

November's increase challenges the notion that inflation is under control.

More here at this BBC link.

5:07 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

interesting, thank you...

Spend Dammit lacks a certain something for an economic policy for Canada's 'bestest buddy'...

scary a hell to live in Canada these days, we're arguably the last democracy on the continent right now... its rather like living in Amsterdam & watching the Weimar Republic...

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7:21 am  

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