Saturday, September 15, 2007

1000 posts! A look around at the news

I just realized I have had 1000 posts on this blog. Which is some kind of milestone I guess. As a 1001 post, I will revert back to a newsletter esq piece with a look around at other blogs, stories, etc...
The Unknown Professor (Financial Rounds) reports on a WSJ article by Robert Reich on CEO pay.
"Reich then goes on to explain the increase in CEO pay over time as a rational consequence of increasing competition....50 years ago, most large firms were in oligopolistic industries, with stable unions and predictable revenue streams. So, CEOs were almost like quasi-bureaucrats.

In contrast, now the level of competition is so fierce (and entry barriers so low) that even small differences in managerial quality can result in huge changes in profitability and market value."
NY Times (and many others) give us a case study in the making (anyone want to co-author one?) on Northern Rock who got stuck in the quicksand of the current mortgage market and had to turn to the Bank of England for help to stave off a run on the bank.
"Depositors of a big British mortgage lender, Northern Rock, rushed to withdraw money on Friday after the bank, unable to raise financing because of the tight credit market, turned to the Bank of England for an emergency loan."
Bloomberg reports that Alan Greenspan in his new book warns of politicians trying to take more control/independence over the Fed. (Great for Money and Banking)
"There are already some signs that political scrutiny is rising. Democrats including Barney Frank of Massachusetts, who heads the House Financial Services Committee, called last week for a ``meaningful'' cut in interest rates.

``Federal Reserve independence is not set in stone,'' wrote Greenspan....``The dysfunctional state of American politics does not give me great confidence in the short run'' and there may be ``a return of populist, anti-Fed rhetoric,'' he wrote.

Interestingly the NY Times reports more on Greenspan's comments on politics and his inability to forecast the mortgage market problems.

Can you say Hyper-Inflation? Check out this piece from the BBC. (Great for Money and Banking)

"One US dollar now buys 30,000 Zimbabwe dollars on the official market, having previously earned 250 Zimbabwe dollars.

However dealers said that on the illegal market, $1 was buying 250,000 of the Zimbabwean currency

Latest figures put Zimbabwe's annual inflation at 7,634%. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned it could reach 100,000% by the end of the year."
And finally, for those who want something else to worry about, what is we run out of oil sooner than most thought possible. (in a related item, oil is at or near its all time high.) CNN speculates the following:
"At some point in the near future, worldwide oil production will peak, then decline rapidly, causing depression-like conditions or even the starvation of billions across the globe.That's the worst-case scenario for subscribers to the "peak oil" theory, who generally believe oil production has either topped out or will do so in the next couple of years"

It may be time to look back at some of the most important posts soon. Stay tuned.


The Unknown Professor said...

Congratulations! There's such a big failure rate in blogging that it's rare to see new ones stick around for more that a year or two (in fact, that reminds me - I need to cull my blogroll again of the decesased and defunct). At over three years blogging (and much longer, if you include the old newsletter), you've become one of the "grand old" men in the finance/econ blogosphere.

Keep up the good work.

MoneyScience said...

Congratulations Jim! You've certainly become one of my blogging heroes!