What We Read Today 13 July 2014

July 13th, 2014
in econ_news, syndication

Econintersect: Every day our editors collect the most interesting things they find from around the internet and present a summary "reading list" which will include very brief summaries of why each item has gotten our attention. Suggestions from readers for "reading list" items are gratefully reviewed, although sometimes space limits the number included.

Follow up:

Contrary to what naive economists believe, existing systems are NOT collections of fully independent, calculating agents. Rather, each is an incomprehensibly tuned syncytium, with incredibly densely engineered and deeply tuned, seemingly endless lists of interdependencies. Everything depends upon everything else.
  • Former CEO of CalPERS pleads guilty to fraud, corruption charge (Marc Lifshher, Los Angeles Times) Hat tip to Russell Huntley. Federico R. Buenrostro Jr. pleaded guilty Friday to one federal charge of conspiracy to commit corruption and fraud in funneling deals through his friend, Alfred J.R. Villalobos, for outside firms to manage funds for the California Public Employees' Retirement System. He was charged with and admitted to accepting more than $200,000 in cash plus other valuable gifts. Villalobos, facing charges in a separate trial (he has pled not guilty) is alleged to have received at least $48 million in fees as a middleman for placement of Calpers investments with Wall Street firms between 2005 and 2009. In comparison, executives at Calpers are modestly compensated: In 2011 CEO Anne Stausboll, who succeeded Buenrostro, was paid a total of $380,138 ($283,500 salary and $96,638 bonus). While it may be tempting to think that Buenrostro's judgement was clouded because of his "poor" compensation, excessive compensation has produced many ethical issues as well. See the next article and the writing of William K. Black on "accounting control fraud" at GEI Analysis (here and here) and GEI Opinion.

There are 10 articles discussed today 'behind the wall'.

The final five articles discuss the future of the dollar as the global reserve currency and the possible ascendency of the yuan (Chinese renminbi).

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