Stratfor: The Geopolitics of U.S.-Cuba Relations

by George Friedman

Last week, U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro agreed to an exchange of prisoners being held on espionage charges. In addition, Washington and Havana agreed to hold discussions with the goal of establishing diplomatic relations between the two countries. No agreement was reached on ending the U.S. embargo on Cuba, a step that requires congressional approval.

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November 2014 Existing Home Sales Well Under Expectations But Rolling Averages Improve

December 22nd, 2014
in aa syndication, home sales and home prices

Written by

The headlines for existing home sales say that sales lost momentum - with sales declining year-over-year (seasonally adjusted data). Our analysis of the unadjusted data shows similar deceleration - but the unadjusted three month rolling averages for sales are positive this month after being in contraction all of 2014 and are accelerating. Bottom line - this was a bad month in a generally improving trend.

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November 2014 CFNAI Super Index Spikes Due to Production Related Items. Well Above Market Expectations.

December 22nd, 2014
in aa syndication, cfnai

Written by

The economy was growing much faster based on the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) 3 month moving (3MA) average - and the economy is now well above the historical trend rate of growth.

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Does the Central Bank Control Long-Term Interest Rates?: A Glance at Operation Twist

December 21st, 2014
in aa syndication

Fixing the Economists Article of the Week

by Philip Pilkington

Although less prevalently talked about today many economists assume that while the central bank has control over the short-term rate of interest, the long-term rate of interest is set by the market. When Post-Keynesians make the case that when a country issues its own sovereign currency the rate of interest is controlled by the central bank and that the government never faces a financing constraint some economists deny this and point to the long-term rate of interest which they claim is under the control of the market. They say that if market participants decide to put the squeeze on the government they can raise the long-term rate of interest.

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Media Reports It Wrong Again – Housing Starts Actually Plunged In November

December 20th, 2014
in home sales and home prices

by Lee Adler, Wall Street Examiner

Don’t believe everything you read in the mainstream media. Especially don’t believe anything in the financial news media until you’ve looked at the data yourself. It’s no wonder investors are so often caught flatfooted in the markets. Financial “journalists” feed their readers and viewers a constant stream of misinformation and bad data. Financial reporters are so atrocious at serving their audience I have to believe that they are, wittingly or unwittingly, part of a deliberate and elaborate campaign of disinformation… unless you believe in Coincidence Theory.

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