Econintersect: Here are some of the headlines we found to help you start your day. For more headlines see our afternoon feature for GEI members, What We Read Today, which has many more headlines and a number of article discussions to keep you abreast of what we have found interesting.
Oil rises on draw in U.S. crude stocks, but supply worries remain (Reuters) Crude prices fell about 3% for a second straight day on Wednesday following a 4.6 million barrel build in U.S. distillates inventories. The jump was the biggest weekly build since January and put distillate stocks at six-year seasonal highs. "It's good news at this time of the year to see a draw like that (in crude stocks)," said Ric Spooner, chief market analyst for CMC Markets. "But the market seems to be more concerned at the moment about the possibility of a sharp increase of the supply from Libya." Crude prices have fallen by around 8% in the last five trading sessions, and concerns are growing over the possibility of returning crude supplies from Libya and Nigeria.
The Danger in Office-Market REITs (Keith Jurow, Advisor Perspectives) KJ has contributed to GEI. Keith Jurow has one of the most extensive networks of real estate data sources of any who cover the sector. Here he discusses how optimism over the past couple of years has led to unrealistic expectations for commercial real estate, office real estate in particular, and an unsustainable run-up in prices, back to levels near the bubble peak in 2007. Some markets are well above bubble highs. This year and next are producing peaks in maturing debt which add extra stress to the market as loans taken out at the height of the bubble need to be rolled over or retired. Some of these may not be serviceable with tighter underwriting standards. Keith has a detailed analysis of the status of large office REITS which is quite enlightening. Econintersect: This is a much deeper analysis of the CRE debt situation than in another article we posted a few hours ago: Tidal Wave Of Commercial Mortgage Refinancing Volume In 2017.
Dems fear they made a mistake passing ObamaCare provision (The Hill) Democrats are looking back with regret on a provision that was slipped into a funding bill two years ago, arguing that it is contributing to the insurer problems plaguing ObamaCare. In hindsight, some Democrats say they should have fought harder against the Republican provision, which limits funding for insurers under a program called risk corridors. Since not a single Republican voted for Obamacare after succeeding in getting a number of their requests included, this has to be one of the greatest political "pranks" of all time. See No Republicans Voted for Obamacare, so It's Not Their Problem to Fix.
After a whiplash-inducing morning of mixed messages, Donald J. Trump on Wednesday opened a small window into some of the results from his most recent physical examination, revealing that he is overweight and takes a statin, a type of drug that lowers cholesterol.
Mr. Trump gave the quick synopsis on Dr. Mehmet Oz's television show after the Republican presidential nominee's aides had said that he would, then that he would not, broach the topic with the doctor on the show.
A news release from "The Dr. Oz Show" said that Dr. Oz, "as all physicians do when seeing a patient for the first time," took the candidate "through a full review of systems including the following: nervous system; head and neck; hormone levels; cardiovascular health and related medications; respiratory health; gastrointestinal health; bladder or prostate health; dermatological health; history of cancer."
The release also said they reviewed "family medical history - occurrence of Alzheimer's or dementia, heart disease, cancer in relatives."
A Trump aide said that Dr. Oz, who focuses heavily on obesity, declared Mr. Trump "slightly overweight" with a weight of 236 pounds (although earlier reports put his weight at 267 pounds.)
Clinton releases medical records (The Hill) Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton on Wednesday released in-depth information from her medical records, including her personal physician saying "she is in excellent mental condition." Dr. Lisa Bardack said she examined Clinton several times this week following her pneumonia diagnosis on Friday and said "the remainder of her complete physical was normal." Bardack, Clinton's personal doctor, said she found a "mild, non-contagious bacterial pneumonia."
Bill to replace Dodd-Frank passes House panel (LifeHealthPro) House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling's Financial CHOICE Act - the sweeping financial reform bill that seeks to replace the Dodd-Frank Act and kill the Department of Labor's fiduciary rule - passed out of committee Tuesday by a 30-26 vote. Democrats charge the Financial CHOICE Act would hurt investors by, among other provisions, dismantling the CFPB. Econintersect: This is a straightforward summary of what is being proposed by Hensarling. There is no similar action in the Senate, so if this bill were to be passed by the House it is likely not to be acted upon by the Senate.
The climate change boondoggle (Personal Liberty) This author asserts that the Climate Change hubub is not about saving the planet but about controlling it and reducing personal freedom.
In Virginia, a state of political separation: Most Clinton voters don't know any Trump voters, and vice versa (The Washington Post) Joshua McDonald, a conservative Christian who lives in reliably Republican territory between Washington and Richmond, supports Donald Trump for president. He doesn't know a soul who's for Hillary Clinton. Ellen Tobey, an office manager in the liberal college town of Charlottesville, will vote for Clinton. She knows of no close friends or relatives planning to push the button for Trump. When it comes to the 2016 presidential election, Virginians are divided way beyond what might be expected in a battleground state where the most recent polls give Clinton an edge.
Who will win the presidency? (FiveThirtyEight) Donald Trump has closed within striking distance according to Nat Silver's organization, trailing Hillary Clinton in the popular vote by 2.8% and by 57 electoral votes. His probability of winning is up to 36%. One month ago Trump's probability of winning was 10%. This forecast is made using polls-only data.
The Robots Aren't Here Yet (Bloomberg) One of the most striking ways in which Narendra Modi's government has changed the policy narrative in India is to make manufacturing central to its ambitions. This is an overdue recognition of the fact that India -- whose workforce is overwhelmingly poor and underemployed, and growing at the rate of a million people every month -- needs to create mass factory jobs if it's to prosper.
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