Lying in Post-Fact America

By: Thursday August 30, 2012 6:21 am

Last night, I considered firing up my Commodore 64 (yes, that’s what I use, what else is out there?) and documenting all the lies in Paul Ryan’s RNC convention speech. I could join TPM and The New Republic and The Daily Beast and Huffington Post and Wonkbook and probably half a dozen more. I could [...]

S&P: Greek Debt Restructuring Would Be a Default

By: Tuesday January 24, 2012 8:55 am

Standard and Poor’s has become the second rating agency to say that, regardless of the conclusion of the Greek debt restructuring, they would judge the country as in “selective default”. With two rating agencies – Fitch is the other – now on the record about default, it’s almost certain that the announcement of the deal, [...]

European Bailout Fund Downgraded

By: Monday January 16, 2012 12:55 pm

As expected, Standard and Poor’s followed up their downgrade of various Eurozone countries last week with a downgrade of the European bailout fund, the EFSF, which has been funded by many of those downgraded countries, in particular France and Austria. This is important because EU leaders at one point wanted to leverage up the EFSF [...]

Eurozone Busily Decimating Member Countries

By: Monday January 16, 2012 6:17 am

When Standard and Poor’s downgraded nine European countries last Friday, they said plainly that European leaders were blinding themselves to the full crisis: We also believe that the agreement [the latest euro rescue plan] is predicated on only a partial recognition of the source of the crisis: that the current financial turmoil stems primarily from [...]

European Crisis: Multiple Credit Downgrades, Greek Debt Talks Collapse

By: Friday January 13, 2012 2:33 pm

Europe has lived in an almost perpetual state of collapse lately, with promising deals followed by despair. Today was one of the despair days. First, Standard and Poor’s cut the credit rating for nine Eurozone nations, including France, which previously had AAA-rated debt. S&P lowered its long-term rating on Cyprus, Italy, Portugal and Spain by [...]

Demand for US Debt Up, Inflation Down

By: Tuesday December 27, 2011 7:34 am

I’ve enjoyed the couple year-end reviews I’ve seen where political pundits look back at their own predictions and figure out what they got wrong. I only wish that economists would do the same. One of the standard opinions from many economists, especially those on the right, was that the US spending/debt load was unsustainable and [...]

Franken: Rating Agencies “Fundamentally Flawed,” Operating Same As Before the Crisis

By: Thursday September 1, 2011 10:59 am

When Dodd-Frank passed, I said that the legislation was not a bill but a plan to write a bill later. Dodd-Frank had dozens of studies and rules that would be written and implemented by regulators. The legislation would offer a rough guideline, but ultimately it would be up to the regulators to actually determine whether [...]

S&P Still Rating Subprime Crap Triple-A

By: Wednesday August 31, 2011 1:33 pm

This is pretty funny. So Standard and Poor’s showed how rigidly they look at the bare facts when they downgraded US credit. Ten-year Treasury bonds have been dropping ever since. But S&P isn’t so concerned about every financial instrument that they are unwilling to dole out triple-A ratings on occasion. Like, for example, subprime mortgage [...]

Bill Gross Apologizes for Betting On Recovery

By: Tuesday August 30, 2011 12:21 pm

A miserable survey on consumer confidence sent stocks down early today, though they have recovered. But the response has been predictable on another front: with bad economic news comes a smaller appetite for risk, and a headlong rush into US Treasuries, the very instrument that Standard and Poor’s downgraded a few weeks ago. In afternoon [...]

S&P President Deven Sharma Bails Out

By: Tuesday August 23, 2011 8:15 am

Deven Sharma, the President of Standard and Poor’s, will step down, just weeks after the rating agency executed a highly controversial downgrade of US debt, and in the midst of an ongoing investigation from the Justice Department and the SEC over malfeasance in the rating of mortgage backed securities during the housing bubble. The SEC [...]

Democrats Take the Lead on Generic Congressional Ballot

By: Friday August 12, 2011 10:10 am

Whether or not the public “won” in the aftermath of the debt limit debate, I think it’s fairly clear that Democrats won the spin war. In an environment where everyone’s view of Washington diminished dramatically, Republicans took the brunt of that anger, perhaps because they are now the most vocal leaders in Washington, perhaps because [...]

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