Sunday, July 24, 2016

Alexander Hamilton : Even Bigger than a Broadway Show

Alexander Hamilton, one of our founding fathers. He fought bravely with George Washington during the Revolutionary War and after the war he became the first Treasury Secretary of the United States. He is the architect of the financial system we have today. He started the first bank, the Bank of New York , the first industrial city in the US Paterson NJ and he’s also on our currency. Anyone know what denomination? The $10 dollar bill. All of this after having a childhood that would make Charles Dickens cringe and on coarse he died at age 47 of gun shoot wounds from a duel.

Find out all about Hamilton and More book now

S&P 500 Hits New Highs While Bond defaults are at highest level since 2009

July 24,2016
one small voice

Corporate bond defaults have just crossed an ominous milestone. Now 100 companies have defaulted on debt, 50 percent more than for the same period in 2015 and the highest level since 2009, according to S&P Global Ratings.

While the S&P 500 reaches new all time highs day after day, the IMF is about to downgrade global growth again, $13 trillion in global bonds trade with a negative yield, and the shape of the US yield curve is where it was the last time the US entered a recession. The ongoing surge in corporate defaults is now on pace to surpass 2009, the worst year in history for corporate bankruptcies.

According to S&P, with half of 2016 in the history books, corporate bond defaults just hit the milestone "century" mark, or 100, last week, rising by 50% from the number of bankruptcies at this time last year and the highest level since the US emerged from recession in 2009. As a result, the total amount of defaulted debt has risen to $154 billion.

But what is most troubling is that at the current run-rate, with half of 2016 still to come, the global debt default total is on pace to surpass 2009 for the all time corporate bankruptcy record.

Now of coarse given the sharp growth in the shale-based oil production in America ie Fracking over the last two decades, it is little surprise most of the defaults were US based energy companies .

Its different this time ? With the energy and mining sectors stripped out of the calculations , the default rate is running at the lowest level since the last peak during the 2008-09 financial crisis, claimed asset manager M&G noted in April.

Given the concentration in one sector I think it's a bit early for a parachute ,but that's what they said about sub prime mortgages and or CDO's in 2008 and 2009. Its just the housing sector no need for panic ? Could this be the begging of something big or just sectors dynamics on the mend?

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Too-big-to-jail: DOJ investigation of HSBC proves that some are above the law under the Obama Administration

July 13,2016 the staff of the Ridgewood blog

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Scott Garrett (NJ-05) issued the following statement after the House Financial Services Committee released a staff report of its investigation into the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) decision not to prosecute HSBC or any of its executives or employees for serious violations of U.S. anti-money laundering laws and related offenses.

“While the vast majority of Americans pay a price if they break the law, the Justice Department has once again proven that the rules don’t apply to those with special privileges and connections under the Obama Administration,” said Garrett. “Despite their best efforts for three years to side-step Congressional inquiries and oversight, the House Financial Services Committee was able to find that DOJ has been misleading the American people about their decision not to prosecute HSBC employees and executives on anti-money laundering charges, proving that too-big-to-jail is alive and well.”


The Committee initiated its investigation in March 2013. The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of the Treasury failed to comply with the Committee’s requests to obtain relevant documents, necessitating the issuance of subpoenas to both agencies.

Approximately three years after its initial inquiries, the Committee finally obtained copies of internal Treasury records showing that DOJ has not been forthright with Congress or the American people concerning its decision to decline to prosecute HSBC. To read the House Financial Services Committee’s full report, click here.

Scott Garrett is Chairman of the Financial Services Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government-Sponsored Enterprises.

Nearly Two-Thirds of Americans Can’t Pass a Basic Test of Financial Literacy

Madeline Farber / Fortune 5:12 PM ET

Apparently the message of the financial crisis didn’t get across

Quick: If you take out a $1000 loan that has a 20% rate, how much will you owe a year in interest?

Answer: $200. But if you got that wrong, you’re not alone. Nearly two thirds of Americans can’t calculate interest payments correctly, according to a new study. About a third said they didn’t even know how.

One of the silver linings of the financial crisis was that it was supposed to have taught many Americans a lesson, albeit painful, about the dangers of debt, and financial issues in general. Apparently, the message, though, didn’t get across.

All told, a new study, which was released today, estimated that nearly two-thirds of Americans couldn’t pass a basic financial literacy test, meaning they got fewer than four answers correct on a five-question quiz. Worse, the percentage of those who can pass the test has fallen consistently since the financial crisis to 37% last year, from 42% in 2009

How to embrace nationalism responsibly

By Lawrence Summers July 10

The writer is a professor at and past president of Harvard University. He was treasury secretary from 1999 to 2001 and an economic adviser to President Obama from 2009 through 2010.

It is clear after the Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s victory in the Republican presidential primaries that electorates are revolting against the relatively open economic policies that have been the norm in the United States and Britain since World War II. If further evidence is needed, one need only look to the inability of Congress to pass legislation on immigration reform and the observation that the last four candidates left standing in the U.S. presidential contest all oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Populist opposition to international integration is also on the rise in much of continental Europe and has always been the norm in much of Latin America.

The question now is: What should be the guiding principles of international economic policy? How should the case be made by those of us who believe that the vastly better performance of the global system after World War II than between World War I and World War II was largely due to more enlightened economic policies?

Monday, July 11, 2016

In Major Turn In Banking Regulation House Passes Garrett Amendment to End Too-Big-To-Fail

 July 8,2016

 the staff of the Ridgewood blog

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the House passed Rep. Scott Garrett’s (NJ-05) amendment to the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations bill. The amendment would prevent the Secretary of the Treasury and the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, both voting members of Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC), from designating any additional nonbank companies as Systemically Important Financial Institutions (SIFIs). “American taxpayers shouldn’t be on the hook to bail out big banks, Wall Street, and any other financial institution that the government decides is too-big-to-fail,” said Garrett. “

 As the FSOC designates both banks and non-banks as ‘systemically important,’ it essentially puts the government’s stamp of approval for taxpayer bailouts into federal law. I’m pleased that my colleagues took a stand today to protect the wallets of millions of hardworking Americans who make their financial decisions around kitchen tables instead of Wall Street board rooms.” Additional Information During the 2008 crisis, the taxpayers were forced to spend billions of dollars to bail out financial institutions that were considered too big to fail. The Dodd-Frank Act codified the government’s ability to designate specific banking firms as too-big-to-fail, and gave FSOC the ability to designate additional non-banks as well. Rep. Garrett is Chairman of the Financial Services Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government-Sponsored Enterprises. He is the sponsor of the Bailout Prevention Act and theFinancial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) Transparency and Accountability Act.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

I am Hosting the Financial Crisis Tour and the Wall Street Insider Tour : Monday July 11th and Monday July 18th

James Foytlin is a Retired Investment Adviser, currently a New Media Entrepreneur , Film producer and Consultant mentoring several small tech start ups into profitability .

Mr Foytlin worked at Dean Witter, Fahnestock ,and Shields and Company before he went the independent advisory route . His career in investing has spanned five decades from the late 1970's and he has had first hand experience investing in the pre-computer era , the 1987 stock market crash, the early 90's tech bubble , the 2000 NASDQ melt down ,the 9/11 terror attack and the 2008 financial crisis .

Over his career Mr. Foytlin managed money for individuals and institutions both domestically and internationally on 6 continents.

Mr. Foytlin has studied extensively both the history of investing and many different trading philosophies settling on an hybrid Elliot wave style of trading .

Mr Foytlin was quick to recognize the revolutionary power of the internet and became a member of Wall Street's Digital Underground in 1995 and was one of bloggings earliest proponents.

Mr. Foytlin held numerous securities licences including a series 7,63,managed futures and many state insurance licences . He ran a large international internship program in which many interns went on to work at top tier Wall Streets firms.

Mr Foytlin has traveled extensively both in the US and all over the globe ,is an economics and history buff, Yankee fan and most importantly a "real New Yorker".

I am now hosting the Financial Crisis Tour and the Wall Street Insider Tour : Monday July 11th and Monday July 18th