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lunar 16.12.2008 19:25

Serious flaw in Internet Explorer not fixed yet

Dec 16 08:33 AM US/Eastern
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Users of all current versions of Microsoft Corp.'s Internet Explorer browser might be vulnerable to having their computers hijacked because of a serious security hole in the software that had yet to be fixed Monday. The flaw lets criminals commandeer victims' machines merely by tricking them into visiting Web sites tainted with malicious programming code. As many as 10,000 sites have been compromised since last week to exploit the browser flaw, according to antivirus software maker Trend Micro Inc.

The sites are mostly Chinese and have been serving up programs that steal passwords for computer games, which can be sold for money on the black market. However, the hole is such that it could be "adopted by more financially motivated criminals for more serious mayhem—that's a big fear right now," Paul Ferguson, a Trend Micro security researcher, said Monday.

"Zero-day" vulnerabilities like this are security holes that haven't been repaired by the software makers. They're a gold mine for criminals because users have few ways to fight off attacks.

The latest vulnerability is noteworthy because Internet Explorer is the default browser for most of the world's computers. Also, while Microsoft says it has detected attacks only against version 7 of Internet Explorer, which is the most widely used edition, the company warned that other versions are also potentially vulnerable.

Microsoft said it is investigating the flaw and is considering fixing it through an emergency software patch outside of its normal monthly updates, but declined further comment. The company is telling users to employ a series of complicated workarounds to minimize the threat.

Many security experts, meanwhile, are urging Internet Explorer users to use another browser until a patch is released.


On the Net:

Microsoft's advisory:

lunar 16.12.2008 20:03

Tue 16 Dec 2008

In Benny We Trust

Posted by alyx under bernanke , loller dollar
[4] Comments

Here’s a possible, more interesting outcome from today’s Federal Reserve announcement. The rate cut thing is getting a little played out; what if Bernanke decides he might like to issue his own debt?
[The Federal Reserve is] asking Congress about permission to issue their own debt directly, not tied to Treasuries.

This is known in central banking circles as ‘cutting out the middleman.’ Not only does the Treasury no longer issue the currency, but they also no longer have any control over how much debt backed currency the Fed can now issue directly.

If the Fed were able to issue its own debt, which is currently limited to Federal Reserve Notes backed by Treasuries under the Federal Reserve Act, it would provide Bernanke the ability to present a different class of debt to the investing public and foreign central banks.

Fundamentally, as the Fed’s balance sheet grows to Violet Beauregarde-like proportions, they have drawn down their stack of T-notes, cried like emo kids to get Treasury to issue more debt, and spewed reserves left and right - and now that Treasury has cut them off because it needs to raise cash for its own epic spending, the Fed is considering issuing its own debt.

Do they have the authority?
I had always worked under the assumption that the Federal Reserve couldn’t issue debt,” said Vincent Reinhart, a former senior Fed staffer who is now an economist at the American Enterprise Institute. He says it is an action better suited to the Treasury Department, which has clear congressional authority to borrow on behalf of the government.

(Do you think that will stop them?)

[h/t to The Hedonistic Pleasureseeker for leaving this link in our comments a few days ago, and please note I jacked the graphic from the original source, because a) it is hella funny and b) I am, alas, extremely busy at work right now.]

lunar 16.12.2008 21:12

Tue 16 Dec 2008

MSNBC Gets Finance

Posted by Jason under governors

Yeah, that pretty much says it all.

Fed sets new target range for overnight rate

Rate will range from zero to 0.25 percent for what banks charge each other

WASHINGTON - In a radical move, the Federal Reserve slashed its key interest rate to a record low on Tuesday and vowed to use all the weapons at its disposal to fight the worsening recession, which has dragged down consumer prices and home construction.

The Fed created a new target range for its federal funds rate so that it will hover between 0.25 percent and zero. That dramatically lowers the Fed’s targeted rate, called the federal funds rate, which had stood at 1 percent.

The bold move surprised economists, most of whom were predicting the Fed would cut the funds rate in half to 0.50 percent. A few thought the Fed could opt for an even more forceful action. The funds rate is the interest banks charge each other on overnight loans.

mit Video --->

lunar 16.12.2008 22:13

:wirr ...hält's :confused:rolleyes;)

lunar 17.12.2008 08:43

16 December 2008

Bernanke Unleashes the Power of the Monetary Force

The Fed will lead us out of deflation, but how many years will we spend in the wilderness?

Federal Reserve Open Market Committee
Release Date: December 16, 2008
For immediate release

The Federal Open Market Committee decided today to establish a target range for the federal funds rate of 0 to 1/4 percent. (That's it, we're effectively at ZERO - Jesse)

Since the Committee's last meeting, labor market conditions have deteriorated, and the available data indicate that consumer spending, business investment, and industrial production have declined. Financial markets remain quite strained and credit conditions tight. Overall, the outlook for economic activity has weakened further.

Meanwhile, inflationary pressures have diminished appreciably. In light of the declines in the prices of energy and other commodities and the weaker prospects for economic activity, the Committee expects inflation to moderate further in coming quarters.

The Federal Reserve will employ all available tools to promote the resumption of sustainable economic growth and to preserve price stability. In particular, the Committee anticipates that weak economic conditions are likely to warrant exceptionally low levels of the federal funds rate for some time.

The focus of the Committee's policy going forward will be to support the functioning of financial markets and stimulate the economy through open market operations and other measures that sustain the size of the Federal Reserve's balance sheet at a high level. As previously announced, over the next few quarters the Federal Reserve will purchase large quantities of agency debt and mortgage-backed securities to provide support to the mortgage and housing markets, and it stands ready to expand its purchases of agency debt and mortgage-backed securities as conditions warrant. The Committee is also evaluating the potential benefits of purchasing longer-term Treasury securities.

Early next year, the Federal Reserve will also implement the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility to facilitate the extension of credit to households and small businesses. The Federal Reserve will continue to consider ways of using its balance sheet to further support credit markets and economic activity. (TASLF for homes and businesses. Will that be a two-page form like TARP? Can I fill it out online? - Jesse)

Voting for the FOMC monetary policy action were: Ben S. Bernanke, Chairman; Christine M. Cumming; Elizabeth A. Duke; Richard W. Fisher; Donald L. Kohn; Randall S. Kroszner; Sandra Pianalto; Charles I. Plosser; Gary H. Stern; and Kevin M. Warsh. (Did Ben threaten them with martial law? Or just scare the hell out of them? - Jesse)

In a related action, the Board of Governors unanimously approved a 75-basis-point decrease in the discount rate to 1/2 percent. In taking this action, the Board approved the requests submitted by the Boards of Directors of the Federal Reserve Banks of New York, Cleveland, Richmond, Atlanta, Minneapolis, and San Francisco. The Board also established interest rates on required and excess reserve balances of 1/4 percent.

Posted by Jesse at 4:42 PM :verbeug

lunar 17.12.2008 08:52

Tue 16 Dec 2008

How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Inflation

Posted by alyx under links
[3] Comments

In case you’re in need of evening entertainment, I found this video on The Mess That Greenspan Made.

lunar 17.12.2008 08:58


Paterson's 2009-10 budget proposal represents only a 1% increase in total spending from this year's budget - the smallest increase in a dozen years. It also calls for:

  • A 3.3%, or $698 million, reduction in school aid.
  • $3.5 billion in health care savings, including reductions in payments to hospitals and nursing homes.
  • Video slot machines at Belmont Park, more multistate lottery games and expanded hours for the state's Quick Draw lottery game.
  • Layoffs for 521 state workers and the elimination of seven state agencies........


lunar 17.12.2008 10:04

Apple zum letzten Mal auf der Macworld

CUPERTINO - 16. Dezember 2008 - Apple hat bekanntgegeben, dass die Firma Anfang Januar zum letzten Mal auf der Macworld Expo als Aussteller auftreten wird. Philip Schiller, Senior Vice President Worldwide Product Marketing, wird die Eröffnungsrede zur Macworld Conference & Expo halten, es wird Apples letzte Keynote auf einer Macworld sein. Die Keynote beginnt am Dienstag, 6. Januar 2009 um 9.00 Uhr im Moscone West. Die Macworld findet vom 5.-9. Januar 2009 im Moscone Center in San Francisco statt.

Apple erreicht immer mehr Menschen über immer vielfältigere Wege, sodass Messeauftritte - wie für andere Unternehmen auch - nur noch einen sehr kleinen Anteil an der Kundenansprache von Apple haben. Die stetig wachsende Popularität der Apple Retail Stores, die mittlerweile mehr als 3,5 Millionen Besucher jede Woche verzeichnen, als auch die Website ermöglichen es Apple auf innovative Art und Weise Hunderte von Millionen Kunden auf der ganzen Welt direkt zu erreichen.

Apple hat seine Beteiligung an Messen in den letzten Jahren systematisch zurückgefahren, unter anderem auf Messen wie der NAB, Macworld New York, Macworld Tokyo oder der Apple Expo in Paris.

Apple hat die Revolution des Personal Computing in den 70er Jahren mit dem Apple II begründet und in den 80er Jahren mit dem Macintosh neu definiert. Heutzutage gilt Apple als das innovativste Unternehmen innerhalb der Industrie - im Desktop- und Notebook-Bereich, durch das Mac OS X Betriebssystem sowie Consumeranwendungen wie iLife und diversen professionellen Softwareapplikationen. Darüber hinaus führt Apple die digitale Musikrevolution mit den portablen Musik- und Video-Playern iPod und dem iTunes Online Store an und ist mit dem revolutionären iPhone in den Mobilfunkmarkt eingetreten.

Georg Albrecht

:gruebel :rolleyes :confused :(

Hoka 17.12.2008 16:30

The Mortgage Meltdown

Scott Pelley reports on the mortgage crisis that's far from over, with a second wave of expected defaults on the way that could deepen the bottom of the U.S. recession.

lunar 17.12.2008 16:42

Wed 17 Dec 2008

Your Daily Doom n’ Gloom

Posted by Jason under fail , governors , zirp
1 Comment

So what, exactly, happens in a zero interest rate environment? Where can we look to see what a modern capitalist economy does, does not do, and can and cannot expect when banks can get free money? Why, it just so happens that Japan experimented with this very thing, from 1999 through 2006. Surprisingly, much like me at my annual reviews, it did not meet or exceed expectations. From TIME:
Despite the fact that lenders could essentially get free money from the government, Japanese banks were busy recapitalizing and paring down mountains of bad assets, and had little interest in doling out more loans in a moribund economy. The zero-rate policy did little to stimulate growth.

Busy recapitalizing…shedding bad assets…not making loans to consumers who may be unable to repay them…growth not stimulated…wow, sounds like we’re headed for a really bad sequel - TARP 2: Electric Boogaloo. How, praytell, is this supposed to fix anything? It didn’t in Japan; by most accounts, the measure - all seven years of it - was a colossal failure. I expect nothing less from the US.

The whole thing even has Paul Krugman making nonsensical noises like Pinky, from TV’s Animaniacs.

lunar 17.12.2008 16:45

Zitat von Hoka

The Mortgage Meltdown

Scott Pelley reports on the mortgage crisis that's far from over, with a second wave of expected defaults on the way that could deepen the bottom of the U.S. recession.

:schwitz hört wohl nimmer auf :rolleyes:( 2nd wave..... hoffentlich nicht noch eine 3rd.....

lunar 17.12.2008 17:37

17 December 2008

Goldman Sachs Offshores Its Profits and Reduces Its Taxes to 1%
"With the right hand out begging for bailout money, the left is hiding it offshore."
In fairness to Goldman, if there can be such a thing, they are taking a lot of writeoffs to reduce their taxes this year, in addition to offshoring their profits into foreign venues with favorable tax rates. That is just globalization, right?

We can comfort ourselves with the knowledge that most of the bailout money is being given out in bonuses anyway, and surely those multi-millionaire employees will be paying some income tax. Unless they are engaging in aggressive management of their tax returns. You think?

Goldman Sachs’s Tax Rate Drops to 1%, or $14 Million
By Christine Harper

Dec. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which got $10 billion and debt guarantees from the U.S. government in October, expects to pay $14 million in taxes worldwide for 2008 compared with $6 billion in 2007.

The company’s effective income tax rate dropped to 1 percent from 34.1 percent, New York-based Goldman Sachs said today in a statement. The firm reported a $2.3 billion profit for the year after paying $10.9 billion in employee compensation and benefits.

Goldman Sachs, which today reported its first quarterly loss since going public in 1999, lowered its rate with more tax credits as a percentage of earnings and because of “changes in geographic earnings mix,” the company said.

The rate decline looks “a little extreme,” said Robert Willens, president and chief executive officer of tax and accounting advisory firm Robert Willens LLC.

“I was definitely taken aback,” Willens said. “Clearly they have taken steps to ensure that a lot of their income is earned in lower-tax jurisdictions.”

U.S. Representative Lloyd Doggett, a Texas Democrat who serves on the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, said steps by Goldman Sachs and other banks shifting income to countries with lower taxes is cause for concern.

“This problem is larger than Goldman Sachs,” Doggett said. “With the right hand out begging for bailout money, the left is hiding it offshore.”

In the first nine months of the fiscal year, Goldman had planned to pay taxes at a 25.1 percent rate, the company said today. A fourth-quarter tax credit of $1.48 billion was 41 percent of the company’s pretax loss in the period, higher than many analysts expected. David Trone, an analyst at Fox-Pitt Kelton Cochran Caronia Waller, expected the fourth-quarter tax credit to be 28 percent.

The tax-rate decline may raise some eyebrows because of the support the U.S. government has provided to Goldman Sachs and other companies this year, Willens said.

“It’s not very good public relations,” he said.

Posted by Jesse at 10:55 AM :verbeug

Pack bleibt Pack :mad

lunar 17.12.2008 19:22

1 Anhang/Anhänge
:rolleyes .....andere sassen für ein paar InsiderVerkäufe (Martha Stewart) in der Kiste - dabei hatte sie niemandem geschadet ausser sich selber, da die Aktien einige Zeit später viel höher standen....da war der SEC ein scharfer Köter :mad

lunar 17.12.2008 19:33

December 16, 2008, 2:47 pm ZIRP!

That’s zero interest rate policy. And it has arrived. America has turned Japanese.

This is the thing I’ve been afraid of ever since I realized that Japan really was in the dreaded, possibly mythical liquidity trap. You can read my 1998 Brookings Paper on the issue here.

Incidentally, there were a bunch of us at Princeton worrying about the Japan problem in the early years of this decade. I was one; Lars Svensson, currently at Sweden’s Riksbank, was another; a third was a guy named Ben Bernanke :rolleyes I wonder whatever happened to him?

Seriously, we are in very deep trouble. Getting out of this will require a lot of creativity, and maybe some luck too.

KoKo01 (1000+ posts) Wed Dec-17-08 10:01 AM
Response to Reply #9 35. An interesting reply about ZIRP from commenter on Krug's blog... This will be less effective even than the Japanese ZIRP, which did at least boost their exports by suppressing the yen-dollar exchange rate enough to give their exporters a 20-25% cost advantage over US competitors.

By reducing to zero the interest income of those retirees and soon-to-be-retirees who actually have savings, this will dramatically reduce the propensity to consume of the only market segment not already in deep financial doo-doo.

It won’t raise home prices, because the supply glut is now obvious to all, and the “real estate can only go up” psychology has been destroyed. And there’s no pent-up first-time buyer demand because the bubble pulled it all forward. Not only does everyone who wants and can afford to own a home already own one, millions who can’t afford one “own” one, too (often three or four). In Japan, mortgage rates fell to 2.38% (governemnt-subsiidy), but home sales and prices just kept on falling.

Millions of baby boomers fast approaching retirement — many about to be forced into it by layoff into a hopeless job market — have seen their stock holdings slashed 40% in value, and their bond funds fallen, too. Since the Fed intends to force them to lend their savings to the banks at zero percent interest, they are going to realize they need to save even more. If they’re still employed, that is; if they’re not, they’re going to tie their purse strings into super-Gordian knots proof against even an Alexander.
— jm

lunar 17.12.2008 20:25


From Emmett Till to Barack Obama

The civil rights movement culminates in the election of America's first black president,00.html

lunar 17.12.2008 21:49

Wed 17 Dec 2008

Citibank. Fail.

Posted by alyx under all ur bankz , bandit
[2] Comments

The Bandit is in ur ATMz, not releasin’ ur fundz… LoLo tells us that if you have a Citibank account, give up on trying to access it for a while. Props to AP for referring to Citi as “troubled”:
NEW YORK (AP) - Customers of New York City-based Citibank have lost access to much of their account information because of a computer outage.Many of the troubled bank’s clients haven’t been able to retrieve account details online or by telephone since Tuesday afternoon. Others can access only parts of their account profiles.

Citibank telephone representatives say they don’t know what caused the outage but technicians are working to fix it. They’ve been telling customers to call back after Wednesday morning.

A Citibank spokeswoman hasn’t replied to a phone message or an e-mail sent after business hours.

Citibank is a division of Citigroup Inc., which is struggling to survive the global financial crisis with billions of dollars in aid from the government.

Jason rampantly speculated that “computer outage” is a euphemism for “money outage,” and we eagerly await a statement from Vikram Bandit himself that proves us wrong. ja bei der Führung - da steigen auch die Compis aus :o

lunar 17.12.2008 21:53

17 December 2008

Deflation Chart from the Propagandaministerium

From the New York Times

Looks like we are experiencing a real deflation.

Print faster Ben. Bail out those banks.

This is from

Here is the Consumer Price Index calculated using the sames rules that were in place in 1990 before Daddy Bush, Slick Willy and Junior worked their changes on it.

We like the drop in gasoline prices. We'll like the deflation even more if and when it shows up in healthcare, food costs, tuition, electricity, insurance, appliances, and automobiles.

Until then, be happy and keep eating your government recommended Dog Chow.

We beieve we are seeing significant price declines in key commodities like oil and some building materials. Price and narrow money deflation is a natural phenomenon in periods of swift asset declines, as we had seen in 2002 before the Fed started their reflation which led to the housing and equity bubbles.

But to hold this out as an 'apples to apples' comparison back to 1920, which many will do because it either supports their econo-religious theories, or promotes an atmosphere favorable to the government interventions, is reprehensible.

Posted by Jesse at 2:53 PM :verbeug

lunar 17.12.2008 22:04 :supi :hihi

lunar 18.12.2008 08:38

Latin America summit excludes U.S. and welcomes Cuba

Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:28am GMT

By Raymond Colitt

COSTA DO SAUIPE, Brazil (Reuters) - Latin American leaders on Tuesday blamed the global economic crisis on rich countries and welcomed Communist-run Cuba at a summit meeting designed to weaken U.S. influence in the region.

The presence of Cuban President Raul Castro at the meeting in northeastern Brazil was touted as a sign of Latin America's growing independence from the United States, a far cry from the Cold War era when Cuba was expelled from the Washington-based Organisation of American States.

"Cuba returns to where it always belonged. We're complete, we're forming a team, a good team," said Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, the region's most vehement U.S. critic and Cuba's closest ally.

"The most positive thing for the independence of our continent is that we meet alone without the hegemony of the empire," Chavez said in reference to the United States....

full story:

....läuft nicht mehr so rund für die Amis :rolleyes

lunar 18.12.2008 08:40


lunar 18.12.2008 08:43

Wed Dec 17 2008 19:45:45 ET

When a powerful labor leader picked up the phone this week, he was surprised to hear the voice of a top aide to New York City Mayor Bloomberg. The aide made it clear: Caroline Kennedy [lose the Schlossberg] is going to be senator, "so get on board now!"

Buttons are being pushed and strings pulled by the mayor, the NEW YORK TIMES plans to front on Thursday.

The involvement has helped immediately elevate and coordinate the debut of Kennedy, who lacked an experienced political staff of her own.

But now, it is setting off an intense backlash among Democrats.


lunar 18.12.2008 08:45

Dollar No Longer Haven After Fed Moves Rate Near Zero (Update2)
By Kim-Mai Cutler and Bo Nielsen

Dec. 17 (Bloomberg) -- The world’s biggest currency-trading firms say the dollar’s appeal as a haven amid the financial crisis all but evaporated.

The U.S. currency slid to a 13-year low against the yen today and had its biggest one-day decline versus the euro after the Federal Reserve reduced its target interest rate yesterday to a range of zero to 0.25 percent, the lowest among the world’s biggest economies. CMC Markets said today the currency’s prospects appear “ominous.” State Street Global markets said the dollar’s outlook has been “undermined.”

“The dollar has been under heavy downward pressure,” said Robert Minikin, a senior currency strategist in London at Standard Chartered Bank Plc. “This move is very well-justified and has a long way to run.” Standard Chartered is preparing to cut its dollar forecasts, Minikin said......

full story:

lunar 18.12.2008 08:59

Wirtschaft: 18. Dezember 2008, 08:28
Chrysler schliesst alle Werke für einen Monat

GM stoppt Bau einer Fabrik – Auch Ford verlängert Ferien

Der angeschlagene amerikanische Autokonzern Chrysler macht ab Freitag alle 30 Produktionsstätten in Nordamerika für einen Monat dicht. Das kündigte das Unternehmen am Mittwoch an. Chrysler und Konkurrent General Motors fürchten, in den nächsten Wochen zahlungsunfähig zu werden. ...
GM und Chrysler: Bereit zur Fusion
Frankreich: Der Koloss steht still

lunar 18.12.2008 09:08

2 Anhang/Anhänge
...mies Trämli ;)

lunar 18.12.2008 09:27

Fresh credit strains in Europe as Deutsche Bank shocks markets

Deutsche Bank has refused to redeem a bond issue in an unprecedented move that has rattled Europe's credit markets and cut short the relief rally following America's dramatic move to zero rates.

By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
Last Updated: 9:08PM GMT 17 Dec 2008

The news set off a fresh flight from European bank debt. Credit default swaps (CDS) on the iTraxx Financial index measuring stress in the sector saw the biggest jump since the Lehman Brothers crisis, rising 20 points to 226.

Adding to the gloom, Standard & Poor's warned that a fifth of all lower-rated companies in Western Europe and the UK are likely to default over the next two years, greatly exceeding the scale of bankruptcies after the dotcom bust. The agency said up to 75 companies that issue debt in the capital markets would fail in 2009 as they struggle to roll over debt. Four have failed this year.

Deutsche Bank, Germany's top lender, said it had chosen not to exercise a "call option" on a subordinated bond worth €1bn (£930bn), breaking an iron-fast code in the credit markets. The bank's share price fell 7pc in Frankfurt, and the default insurance on the company's debt surged. "This has never happened before," said Willem Sels, a credit strategist at Dresdner Kleinwort. "Banks have never wanted to do it because it upsets investors and could mean that future funding will be hit."

Deutsche Bank, run by Josef Ackerman, is within its legal rights. The contract lets the bank accept an automatic rise in interest costs after five years, or call the option and raise money on the open market.....

full story:

...wenn die Brandung stärker ist als der Fels :rolleyes

17 December 2008

Deutsche Bank Surprises Bond Markets By Failing to Redeem its Bonds

It really doesn't seem all that bad to us, compared with the US banking tradition of throwing yourself on the doorstep of the New York Fed and ringing the bell, threatening to collapse the economy until you are bailed out.

lunar 18.12.2008 09:43


Saxo Bank prognostiziert für 2009 eine drastische Verschlechterung der Wirtschaftslage

Gestern, 09:19 Uhr

London und Kopenhagen (ots/PRNewswire) - Rohöl wird bei Diesen Artikel weiter lesen

US-Dollar 25 gehandelt. Der S&P 500 stürzt um 50% auf 500 Punkte.

Nullwachstum des chinesischen BIP. EURUSD fällt auf 0.95.

tritt aus dem WKM aus. Sollten die zehn schlimmsten Prognosen der

Saxo Bank für das kommende Jahr zutreffen, verschlechtern sich die

wirtschaftlichen Bedingungen 2009 dramatisch. "Die gute Nachricht

ist, dass das Jahr 2009 unserer Ansicht nach zum Wendepunkt wird,

denn viel schlimmer kann es nicht mehr werden", meint Chief Economist

David Karsbøl.

Die Prognosen der in Kopenhagen ansässigen Online- und

Investmentbank fliessen in einen Jahresausblick und in Vorhersagen

ein, mit denen Saxo Bank alljährlich versucht, sogenannte

Black-Swan-Ereignisse auf den globalen Märkten auszumachen. Für das

kommende Jahr zeichnen die Prognosen ein düsteres Bild. Ein "Black

Swan" ist ein sehr unwahrscheinliches Ereignis mit massiven

Auswirkungen und gilt als nicht vorhersagbar und überraschend.

Die Saxo Bank Prognosen für 2009:

1) Im Iran kommt es zu schweren sozialen Unruhen, da die

Regierung aufgrund der gesunkenen Ölpreise die Versorgung mit

lebensnotwendigen Bedarfsgütern nicht mehr gewährleisten kann.

2) Der Ölpreis sinkt auf US-Dollar 25 ab, da die Nachfrage

angesichts der schwersten globalen Wirtschaftskrise seit der Grossen

Depression weltweit sinkt.

3) Der S&P 500 fällt 2009 aufgrund von sinkenden Renditen,

schwerwiegenden Immobilienverlusten und steigenden

Kapitalbeschaffungskosten für Unternehmen auf 500 Punkte.

4) Die EU geht voraussichtlich entschlossen gegen die exzessiven

Haushaltsdefizite mehrerer Mitgliedstaaten vor und Italien könnte

frühere Drohungen wahr machen und aus dem WKM austreten.

5) AUDJPY fällt auf 40. Der schrumpfende Rohstoffmarkt wirkt

sich negativ auf die australische Wirtschaft aus.

6) EURUSD fällt auf 0.95 und steigt anschliessend auf 1.30. Die

europäischen Bankbilanzen stehen aufgrund der Stagnation der

osteuropäischen Märkte und den wirtschaftlichen Spannungen im EU-Raum

unter hohem Druck.

7) Das chinesische BIP fällt auf ein Nullwachstum zurück. Die

exportorientierten Sektoren der chinesischen Wirtschaft sind stark

vom freien Fall des Welthandels und vor allem von den USA betroffen.

8) "Pre-Ins First Out". Mehrere, zurzeit vollständig oder

teilweise an den Euro gekoppelte osteuropäische Währungen geraten

2009 aufgrund von Kapitalabflüssen unter wachsenden Druck.

9) Reuters/Jefferies CRB Index fällt um 30 Prozent auf 150

Punkte. Die Rohstoffblase platzt aufgrund von massiven Spekulationen,

die zu Verschiebungen und Verfälschungen der Nachfrage und von

Versorgungsstatistiken geführt haben.

10) 2009 werden die ersten asiatischen Währungen an den CNY

gekoppelt. Die asiatischen Märkte richten in ihrer Suche nach neuen

Handelspartnern ihren Blick vermehrt auf China und wenden sich von

der bisher starken Ausrichtung auf die USA ab.

David Karsbøl, Head of Strategy, Saxo Bank, erläutert:

"Leider ist es keineswegs übertrieben, diese Krise als die

schlimmste aller Zeiten zu bezeichnen. Wir haben uns mit unseren

Voraussagen für das letzte Jahr bedauerlicherweise als sehr

treffsicher erwiesen. Was früher unvorstellbar war, ist heute

alltäglich geworden", meint David Karsbøl.

"In einem Jahr, in dem die Märkte und die wirtschaftlichen

Bedingungen stärker denn je geschwankt haben, scheint es keine

unmöglichen oder ungewöhnlichen Ereignisse mehr zu geben. Wir gehen

davon aus, dass die Ereignisse 2009 ebenso unvorhersehbar sein werden

und haben aus diesem Grund zehn Worst-Case erstellt, die sich

hauptsächlich auf die Entwicklung der globalen Indizes und der

Währungen beziehen. Die gute Nachricht ist, dass das Jahr 2009

unserer Ansicht nach zum Wendepunkt wird, denn viel schlimmer kann es

nicht mehr werden", meint David Karsbøl.

"2008 ist der S&P 500 um mehr als 25 Prozent unter seinen

Höchststand von 1182 Punkten 2007 eingebrochen, die Ölpreise haben

das prophezeite Hoch von US-Dollar 175 fast erreicht und das Wachstum

in UK hat sich negativ entwickelt. Wir können nicht mit Bestimmtheit

sagen, welche unserer Prognosen für 2009 richtig sind, aber

angesichts der vorhergegangenen Jahre werden sich wohl zumindest

einige mit grosser Wahrscheinlichkeit bewahrheiten", fügt er hinzu.

lunar 18.12.2008 13:03

«Dem CS-Chefjurist fiel wohl das Gipfeli aus dem Mund»

Interview: David Vonplon;Aktualisiert um 11:41 Uhr
115 Kommentare

Die Credit Suisse will den Vertreter der Lehman-Geschädigten mit einer Klage zum Schweigen bringen. Doch René Zeyer denkt nicht daran: «Die CS ist beleidigt» sagt er und beruft sich auf die freie Meinungsäusserung.

«Es macht allen Anschein, als wolle die CS die Krise aussitzen»: René Zeyer, Vertreter der Lehman-Opfer, zur Klage der Grossbank gegen seine Person.

«Ein Bankraub mit System»

René Zeyer, Sprecher des Vereins Schutzgemeinschaft der Lehman-Anlageopfer, veröffentlichte Ende Oktober in der Zeitung «Sonntag» einen Gastbeitrag unter dem Titel «Ein Bankraub mit System». Die CS nahm dies wörtlich und schlägt nun mit einer Klage vor dem Handelsgericht zurück. Sie fühlt sich «des Bankraubs bezichtigt», «in unlauterer und widerrechtlicher Weise in ihrer wirtschaftlichen Stellung sowie in ihren Geschäftsverhältnissen herabgesetzt »und «in ihrer Persönlichkeit verletzt».

Im Artikel warf Zeyer der Bank vor, der Vertrieb von Lehman-Anlageprodukten durch CS-Mitarbeiter sei «von reiner Geldgier und der Jagd nach Kommissionen» getrieben gewesen. Gemäss Recherchen des «Tages-Anzeigers» sind rund 4500 CS-Kunden mit einem Anlagevolumen in Lehman-Papieren von 700 Millionen Franken zu Schaden gekommen.

Herr Zeyer, Sie haben Ende Oktober in einem Artikel in der Zeitung «Sonntag» die Credit Suisse scharf angegriffen. Die CS will Ihnen nun mit rechtlichen Schritten verbieten, ihre Aussagen öffentlich zu wiederholen. Werden Sie nun schweigen?
Selbstverständlich nicht. Die Credit Suisse will von mir, dass ich nur noch sage, ihre Kundenberater hätten nach besten Wissen und Gewissen gehandelt. Doch das werde ich nie tun.

Die CS verklagt Sie, weil sie sich aufgrund Ihres Artikels «in ihrer Persönlichkeit verletzt» sieht. Was schliessen sie daraus?
Die CS ist beleidigt. Für eine Bank ist das sehr ungewöhnlich.

Sie halten das Vorgehen der Bank für irrational?
Ich kann mir das nicht anders erklären. Urs Rohner, der Chefjurist der CS, wohnt im Aargau. Ich glaube, dass Rohner an einem schönen Sonntagmorgen die Zeitung «Sonntag» aufgeschlagen hat – und ihm dann das Gipfeli aus dem Mund fiel, als er meinen Artikel gelesen hat. Dann hat er wohl den Rechtsdienst der Bank verständigt....

ganzer Artikel:

die CS :dumm

lunar 18.12.2008 13:14 dieser Frau scheinen nicht alle einverstanden zu sein - sie sei zu nah an dem Fall Madoff :rolleyes

Obamas Wachhund für die Wallstreet

Von Ralph Pöhner. Aktualisiert um 11:34 Uhr 1 Kommentar

Die Finanzjuristin Mary L. Schapiro soll die amerikanische Börsen-Überwachungsbehörde SEC leiten. Sie wird wohl ein massives Umbau-Programm starten.

Er will zu Amerikas Brückenbauer werden und die Gräben zwischen den Parteien überwinden: Deshalb hat Barack Obama schon mehrere wichtige Ämter an Personen übergeben, die weder persönliche Weggefährten sind noch den Stallgeruch seiner demokratischen Partei haben. Der Mann aus Chicago setzt auf Expertentum, möglichst ideologiefrei. In dieses Muster passt auch seine neuste Wahl: Mary L. Schapiro soll die Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) präsidieren – also die mächtige Überwachungsbehörde der Börsen. Wie mehrere US-Medien unter Berufung auf ranghohe Demokraten melden, wird die Ernennung heute Nachmittag offiziell verkündet.....

ganzer Artikel:

lunar 18.12.2008 13:19

Morgan Stanleys Verschrottungsprämie

Die Abwertung eigener Schuldtitel brachte der Bank 2,7 Mrd. $, der Handel mit ihnen nochmal 3,2 Mrd. $ Gewinn. Ein Witz.

Dass die Aktie von Morgan Stanley im US-Handel am Mittwoch nicht richtig wusste, wo es langgeht, kann man ihr nicht verübeln. So erging es auch den Lesern des Quartalsberichts der US-Bank.......

.....Und schließlich wurde übers ganze Jahr sogar Geld verdient. Doch wie? Bei Morgan Stanley funktioniert das Perpetuum mobile, an das sich die Branche in Boomjahren gewöhnt hat, auch im Abschwung. Statt auf die Aktiv- muss man sich dann auf die Passivseite konzentrieren. Hier wurden über das Quartal die eigenen Schuldpapiere immer wertloser - was auch diese Bank als Gewinn buchte. Zudem handelte die Bank auch selber in eigenen Schuldtiteln, mit Gewinn. Insgesamt, so Barclays, erzielte Morgan Stanley mit solcherart "Eigenhandel" und Schuldenabwertung 5,9 Mrd. $. Wer soll das noch ernst nehmen?

...die wollen wohl alle für doof verkaufen :mad

lunar 18.12.2008 15:35

International Forecaster December 2008 (#5) - Gold, Silver, Economy + More

By: Bob Chapman, The International Forecaster

-- Posted Thursday, 18 December 2008 | Digg This Article | Source:

The following are some snippets from the most recent issue of the International Forecaster. For the full 28 page issue, please see subscription information below.


As we know there are two sets of rules in banking and on Wall Street - one for the anointed and one for everyone else. The anointed never go to jail for their crimes.

On Friday, it was reported that former Nasdaq stock market chairman Bernard Madoff was arrested for running a fraudulent investment business that lost $50 billion before he confessed to senior employees it was a “giant Ponzi” scheme.

Federal investigators working through the weekend to unravel Bernard Madoff’s alleged $50 billion Ponzi scheme found evidence he ran an unregistered money-management business alongside his firm’s brokerage and investment-advisory subsidiaries, two people with knowledge of the inquiry said.

Clients of the undisclosed unit may have included hedge funds, according to the people, who declined to be identified or to name the funds because the probe isn’t public. Investigators from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission are looking for signs that others participated in the alleged fraud and are examining why Madoff’s wife’s name appeared on documents linked to transactions under scrutiny, the people said. His wife, Ruth Madoff, has not been accused of any wrongdoing.

We now are faced with another budding scandal, which is engulfing Robert Rubin former Treasury Secretary under Bill Clinton and his former disciple Chuck Prince for their roles in another Ponzi scheme that is now choking world banking.

They and their accomplices over the past five years are named in a federal lawsuit for an alleged complex cover-up of toxic securities, which was administered worldwide. They caused part of what you see in CDO, Collateralized Debt Obligations, which have been responsible for trillions of dollars in losses. These disastrous securities that were sold by Citibank were off the books in shell entities. The actions of Rubin and his partners in crime were responsible for the collapse of Citigroup, which wiped out $122 billion in shareholder value.

What is equally onerous to shareholders is that Rubin and his gang of accomplices were able to hold Citigroup’s shares up in value while they cashed out $150 million worth - stock sales that were suspicious and calculated to maximize the personal benefits from undisclosed inside information. A trait Wall Street Illuminists are famous for.

Rubin made $30.6 million on the deal. What more would you expect from the masters of the universe?.........

full story:

.....ziemlich deftige Sprache - inwieweit alles so stimmt :nw:rolleyes

lunar 18.12.2008 19:57

18 December 2008

Too Big to Fail, Too Well-Connected to Jail: The Economic Underworld of Bankruptcy for Profit

In her brilliant essay, NY Times Pulls Punches on Wall Street Bubble Era Pay, Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism quotes a 1993 research paper from the Brookings Institution titled Looting: The Economic Underworld of Bankruptcy for Profit.
"Our theoretical analysis shows that an economic underground can come to life if firms have an incentive to go broke for profit at society's expense (to loot) instead of to go for broke (to gamble on success). Bankruptcy for profit will occur if poor accounting, lax regulation, or low penalties for abuse give owners an incentive to pay themselves more than their firms are worth and then default on their debt obligations.

Bankruptcy for profit occurs most commonly when a government guarantees a firm's debt obligations. The most obvious such guarantee is deposit insurance, but governments also implicitly or explicitly guarantee the policies of insurance companies, the pension obligations of private firms, virtually all the obligations of large or influential firms. These arrangements can create a web of companies that operate under soft budget constraints.

To enforce discipline and to limit opportunism by shareholders, governments make continued access to the guarantees contingent on meeting specific targets for an accounting measure of net worth. However, because net worth is typically a small fraction of total assets for the insured institutions (this, after all, is why they demand and receive the government guarantees), bankruptcy for profit can easily become a more attractive strategy for the owners than maximizing true economic values...

Unfortunately, firms covered by government guarantees are not the only ones that face severely distorted incentives. Looting can spread symbiotically to other markets, bringing to life a whole economic underworld with perverse incentives. The looters in the sector covered by the government guarantees will make trades with unaffiliated firms outside this sector, (such as Enron, and even the 'deep capture' of agencies like the SEC, and the placement of your people in key government positions - J) causing them to produce in a way that helps maximize the looters' current extractions with no regard for future losses...."

We wonder if the authors Akerlof and Romer realized that their paper of warning, most likely targeting FDIC and the GSE's, would become a guidebook and recipe for an historic looting of the United States economy by a few financial institutions under the government guarantee of 'too big to fail' and 'too well-connected to jail.'

Impossible? Who would have believed that a paper from a neo-conservative think-tank, The Project for the New American Century titled Rebuilding America's Defences: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century would become a blueprint for a program of deception and invasion?

The conclusions and the title of this blog are our own. Yves is one of the most level-headed of economic commentators. Her site is a 'must read' for the serious every day. We do not wish to put words in her mouth.

Having said that, the solution for non-US investors is simple. Do not hold US dollars or dollar assets to any significant degree until it proves itself to be responsible again. Bring your money back to your home economy. Build something useful for yourself and your children. Do not be a renter in your own house. If you are not for yourselves, who will be?

Do not allow your own bureaucracies to enforce an industrial policy of domestic deprivation and low wages to support an aggressive expansion of exports in return for increasingly worthless paper. When will the benefits come if not when times are good?

If your country is large enough you may become self-sufficient. If not, you can join one of the regional trade associations such as the European Union.

Commodities such as oil and industrial raw materials will continue to be pivotal, highly manipulated and disputed, for quite some time until the world regains its economic and political balance. Why would you allow one country to essentially set all the prices with its own paper?

For US investors the solution is not as easy. The dollar is an essential component of any portfolio and almost all day to day transactions.

There is promise in the new administration, despite despite early disappointment in some of the appointments to date. Let's give them time to show progress and programs. One needs capable individuals in place to act quickly. How can we forget the stumbling missteps of the Jimmy Carter administration?

However, too many of the appointments are cyncial verging on the outrageous for a government with a mandate to reform. Actions will speak much louder than words.

Excessive secrecy is incompatible with a democracy. More transparency in government is a reform of the first order.

It took years to lose our integrity, and to regain it is the work of a generation, one day at a time. There has been an ongoing program of overturning all the reforms and regulations of the 1930's, one by one, to discredit and repeal them, and to ultimately put the country under the control of an oligopoly. The pattern is unmistakable.

If you would like to give your children and grandchildren something worthwhile and lasting at this holiday season, then resolve to give them back the Republic that your parents and grandparents gave to you, and not give it away for some short term security and profit.

Posted by Jesse at 10:24 AM :verbeug

The Reckoning
On Wall Street, Bonuses, Not Profits, Were Real

Daniel Acker/Bloomberg News
E. Stanley O’Neal, the former chief executive of Merrill Lynch, was paid $46 million in 2006, $18.5 million of it in cash.

Published: December 17, 2008
“As a result of the extraordinary growth at Merrill during my tenure as C.E.O., the board saw fit to increase my compensation each year.”

lunar 18.12.2008 21:19

Thu 18 Dec 2008

Credit Suisse: Now, Isn’t This Better Than A Sharp Stick In The Eye?

Posted by alyx under all ur bankz , markets , writedowns
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From the “Maybe I should’ve settled for a firm handshake” department, Credit Suisse announces all bonuses will be paid in illiquid assets:
Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) — Credit Suisse Group AG’s investment bank has found a new way to reduce the risk of losses from about $5 billion of its most illiquid loans and bonds: using them to pay employees’ year-end bonuses.

The bank will use leveraged loans and commercial mortgage- backed debt, some of the securities blamed for generating the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, to fund executive compensation packages, people familiar with the matter said. The new policy applies only to managing directors and directors, the two most senior ranks at the Zurich-based company, according to a memo sent to employees today.

The incentive to use an approach like this is overwhelming, and you wonder why nobody thought of it before. First, your employees don’t have to walk away absolutely empty-handed; second, it transfers some of the risk, even though the garbage stays on Credit Suisse’s books, and third, it’s more memorable than handing out homemade fruitcake:
“It’s monstrously clever,” said Dirk Hoffman-Becking, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein Ltd. in London who has a “market perform” rating on Credit Suisse stock. “From a shareholders’ perspective it’s great because you’ve got rid of some of the assets and regulators will be pleased because you’ve organized a risk transfer.”


CS provides leverage to the facility (because we’ve proven again and again that leveraging toxic assets is a brilliant move). Oh, and YOU… yes, YOU… may even be able to get in on this action.
Outside investors may also be permitted to invest in the facility, according to the people familiar with the matter, who declined to be identified because the plan hasn’t been made public. The bank will boost the potential for returns by providing leverage to the facility, and will be paid back first, according to the people.

Operators are standing by… call now! Once the value of these assets drops to zero, this offer can no longer be extended!

[h/t to Carsten Maybach for the link to this epic strat.]

.....also ich muss lachen - obwohl mir das Ganze schon etwas obstrus erscheint :rolleyes:o

Cat 19.12.2008 07:38

:supi :hihi

Credit Suisse: Investmentbanker erhalten Schrottpapiere als Boni

Die Credit Suisse krempelt ihr Bonusmodell schon wieder um. Investmentbanker erhalten einen guten Teil ihrer Boni künftig in Schrottpapieren statt in Aktien.

lunar 19.12.2008 09:20

.....nebst Witwen und "kleinen" Anlegern die er auch noch sogar in den letzten Wochen über den Tisch gezogen hat :gomad

lunar 19.12.2008 09:28

...und das von FOX :eek die sind doch sonst so regierungsfreundlich :gruebel

Thursday, December 18, 2008

FOX Business Sues Treasury for Failure to Respond to Freedom of Information Act Requests

FOX Business Network has filed a lawsuit against the United States Treasury Department over failure to provide information on the bailout funds or respond to FBN’s expedited requests filed under the Freedom of Information Act [FOIA].

mit Video:

.....und hier LOL dazu:

Thu 18 Dec 2008

Thursday Evening Further Reading

Posted by alyx under links
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All the cool kids are doing it - first Bloomberg sued the Fed over that FOIA thing that nobody seems to want to abide by anymore, and now Fox Biz is filing suit against Treasury:
The initial request, filed on November 25, sought actual data on the use of the bailout funds for American International Group and the Bank of New York Mellon, and an additional request, filed on December 1, sought similar data on the bailout funds for Citigroup, Inc. FBN is asking for the Treasury Department to identify, among other issues, the troubled assets purchased, any collateral extended, and any restrictions placed on these financial institutions for their participation in this program.

My favorite Urban Dictionary Word of the Day in a long while is “Ponzi Crawl“:
A pub crawl that adds a new person to buy a round at each location. Each new person is promised that they will get free drinks at all the future bars if they buy this round. Obviously, whoever joins the ponzi crawl last gets screwed!

From the “The More You Know” department - a look inside hedge funds *

And, finally, this guy. I’m just going to call him “Anurag Forfeit” even though there are many more obvious jokes, because none of them are safe for a site where 90% of the readers are at work.

* mit Video --->

lunar 19.12.2008 09:42

19 December 2008

Japan Government to Buy 20 Trillion Yen in Stock to Support Their Markets

You have to wonder why they just don't give money directly to their people, and allow them to use their discretion to invest and consume, rather than use the money to prop up a zombie market at the direction of a central planning bureaucracy.

It probably speaks volumes about their priorities in valuing the keiretsu and its crypto-medieval organization over the individual. The artificial composition of their economy is remarkable, and understood by few economists in the West with the cultural bias of their models.

You have to wonder if there will be any auto stocks in that share festival.

Japan plans to buy $227 billion in shares to boost market
By Michael Kitchen
8:11 a.m. EST Dec. 18, 2008

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- Japan's government said Thursday it is submitting a bill to parliament allowing for the purchase of 20 trillion yen ($227 billion) in stock to help stabilize the Japanese stock market, Kyodo news reported.

Under the bill, the Banks' Shareholding Acquisition Corporation, originally created in January 2002, would resume buying shares from banks and other entities, the Japanese news agency reported.

The bill would be introduced early next month "with an eye to implementing the measure by the end of March," the report quoted lawmakers as saying. The Liberal Democratic Party had intially considered just 10 trillion in stock purchases, but the size was roughly doubled to 20 trillion yen at the request of its ruling coalition partner, the New Komeito party, the report said.

Posted by Jesse at 1:28 AM :verbeug

lunar 19.12.2008 09:44

18 December 2008

Black Swan Dive: Life On the Tails

The worst case scenario is if the Dollar, Bond, and Equities start going down together as the world repudiates the US Dollar Reserve Currency and Credit Bubble.

This is not a probable scenario.

The last time it happened was in 1933 in the trough of the Great Depression.

But we may have the opportunity to see something as once-in-a-lifetime and memorable as John Law's Banque Générale and the Mississipi Bubble.

Let's hope the Federal Reserve can reach deeper in its pockets for a better class of tricks than just front running the dollar and the bonds until they fall over.

Certainly anything is possible, but it does appear as though the US Long Bond is hitting a 'high note' of improbable valuation unless the world accepts a single currency dollar regime.

Posted by Jesse at 11:15 PM :verbeug

...über den US$ gibt es so gegensätzliche Meinungen :rolleyes wenn man da in die Kristallkugel sehen könnte ;)

lunar 19.12.2008 11:07

Riot police, youths clash in Athens, shoppers flee...

Erneute Ausschreitungen in Athen
Zusammenstösse zwischen Polizei und Demonstranten

...keine Ruhe dort :(

lunar 19.12.2008 11:09

Die UBS ist Spitze – im Rating der schlechtesten Banker 2008

Ein britisches Finanzportal kürte einen ganz besonderen Mann des Jahres – den schlechtesten Topmanager der Finanzwelt. Die UBS-Vertreter schlugen sich wacker. Mehr...

lunar 19.12.2008 11:12

Jahresrückblick 2008

Aktuelle Uhrzeit 08:28

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