Early Bird Headlines 21 May 2015
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.
The $10 Hedge Fund Supercomputer That’s Sweeping Wall Street (Bloomberg) A revolution that’s starting with quants on Wall Street will allow anybody, anywhere to work with a self-learning supercomputer. It’s the world of cheap-and-cheerful artificial intelligence.
Sick man whose Obamacare story went viral could be thwarted by Supreme Court (The Washington Post) There are people “who thought they hated ‘Obamacare’ right up until they needed it.”
Five banks fined $5.7b over rate rigging (Reuters, The West Australian) Five of the world’s largest banks, including JPMorgan Chase & Co and Citigroup Inc , were fined roughly $5.7 billion, and four of them pleaded guilty to U.S. criminal charges over manipulation of foreign exchange rates, authorities said on Wednesday. A fifth bank, UBS AG , will plead guilty to rigging benchmark interest rates, the U.S. Justice Department said. The $5.7 billion total includes $1.6 billion in fines separately imposed by the U.S. Federal Reserve on the five banks. A 6th bank, Bank of America Corp, was fined $205 million (not included in the $5.7 billion) for unsound practices in foreign exchange. The $1.8 billion in fines by the Federal Reserve was reported in GEI News yesterday.
Banks Are Now Pleading Guilty to Crimes. So Why Aren’t They Being Punished Like Criminals? (Slate) Since when do felons habitually pay fines and walk? Econintersect: Since the criminal banks took control of the government.
Justice Dept.: NSA may have to wind down bulk data collection this week (Al Jazeera) If Congress doesn’t renew Patriot Act within days, the provision allowing bulk collection of phone records will expire.
40 percent of unemployed have quit looking for jobs (CNBC) Article says: “At a time when 8.5 million Americans still don’t have jobs, some 40 percent have given up even looking.” This is nonsense and Jeff Cox (the author of the article) should know better. The 8.5 million unemployed number comes from the most recent Employment Situation Report from the BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics). This number is for those who are not working and are looking for work on a regular basis – 8.5 million does not belong in the same sentence with “not looking”. According to the BLS there are 93 million people working age people who are not in the labor force (i.e. not working and not looking for work). The BLS says that there are between 2 and 3 million not working, who want to work, but are not looking. Just what group the 40% might belong to is not clear in this terribly written article.
BP oil spill is sending record number of dolphins to watery graves, scientists say (The Washington Post)
The ECB’s in a Tight Spot Over Greece (Bloomberg) The ECB says a Greek solution is a political one and elected politicians must resolve it. The political voices in the EU are largely singing the same tune: Greece doesn’t understand what it must do to resolve the crisis. Meanwhile Greece is saying that the EU doesn’t understand the realities on the ground in Greece. See next article (under Greece) Sounds like a real shortage of understanding.
Greek Gov’t Seeks Comprehensive Deal to End Austerity (Greek Reporter) The Greek government is seeking to secure a single, comprehensive agreement with European Union partners. The deal should put an end to austerity and open the path for growth.
Asia migrants: Malaysia orders search and rescue for boats (BBC News) Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has said the country’s navy will conduct search and rescue missions for Rohingya refugee boats in the Andaman Sea. Humanitarian aid would also be delivered by land and sea. First official action after weeks of rejecting refugee boats and towing them out of Malaysian water.
This American VC Thinks He’s Getting Out of China Just in Time (Bloomberg) Stephen Bell, managing director of Trilogy Ventures, thinks venture capital in China is bubbly and he is going back to the U.S. Another venture capitalist, Rui Ma, partner for 500 Startups, a Silicon Valley-based fund, agrees. He finds valuations in China are now on a par with the U.S. but there is “less traction, the companies are less mature“.
Exclusive: China warns U.S. surveillance plane (CNN) The Chinese navy issued warnings eight times as a U.S. surveillance plane on Wednesday swooped over islands that Beijing is using to extend its zone of influence. The series of man-made islands and the massive Chinese military build-up on them have alarmed the Pentagon, which is carrying out the surveillance flights in order to make clear the U.S. does not recognize China’s territorial claims. The militarized islands have also alarmed America’s regional allies.
How a 19th Century Shipwreck Could Give Canada Control of the Arctic (Bloomberg) The discovery last September of HMS Erebus, one of two British navy ships lost during Sir John Franklin’s doomed 1845 quest to find the Northwest Passage through the Arctic, has established the basis for Canada to claim sovereignty over the southern branch of the Northwest Passage though the Queen Maud Gulf. The area is dotted with more than 30,000 islands known as the Canadian Archipelago. The U.S. has argued against control of the passage by Canada to avoid others (like Iran and the Straight of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf) from claiming extended ownership over waters considered by others to be international. The presence of the Erebus right in the middle of these northern waters is considered a point of evidence supporting Canada’s territorial claim.
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