"“We have lent a huge amount of money to the U.S. Of course we are concerned about the safety of our assets. To be honest, I am definitely a little worried.” "

Chinese premier Wen Jiabao 12th March 2009

""We have a financial system that is run by private shareholders, managed by private institutions, and we'd like to do our best to preserve that system."

Timothy Geithner US Secretary of the Treasury, previously President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.1/3/2009

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Manufacturing mired in recession in UK and US ... Boeing hurting after one month of strike

Britain's manufacturing sector shrank in September at the fastest rate since records began.levels of output, new orders and employment registered unprecedented declines.

The figures come a day after the Office of National Statistics confirmed that the UK economy failed to grow in the second quarter.

They reinforce expectations that Britain has entered its first recession since the early 1990s and boost expectations that interest rates could be cut as soon as next week.

Meanwhile in the US,t he ISM's index of factory activity fell to 43.5 in September, compared with 49.9 in August and 50.0 in July. A reading below 50 indicates contracting economic activity; September's is the lowest since Oct. 2001.

The index "indicates a significantly faster rate of decline in manufacturing during September, marking a departure from the 2008 trend toward negligible growth or contraction each month," ISM said. Price inflation also slowed, to just 53.5 vs. 77 in August and 88.5 in July.

Machinists at Boeings's Everett, Washington factory have been on strike for nearly a month, extending seemingly endless delays on the 787--and on the three 777s Virgin Australia ordered for its first flights.

The new carrier, an offshoot of Virgin Blue, will now move its launch date back from December 15 to February 28, 2009 and hope that its planes are ready by then.

October 3rd 1940 - How the French Vichy Government started the work that ened with the Endlosung

Raphael Alibert, the Minister of Justice prepared the First Statut des Juif which President Marshal Petain signd on October 3rd 1940.

Alibert was a staunch Catholic, a long time supporter of Action Francaise . He chose this moment to define a Jew by race not religious belief - 3 Jewish grandparents or just 2 if the spouse was Jewish was sufficient to brand you.

The Statute declared a numerus clausus or quota of Jews who could work in some professions and they were banned from teaching, journalism, film,theatre,radio, the officer corps and the civil service.

On that day a census of Paris was undertaken and the following day a decree was issued by the Vichy Government for the prefets of provincial France to round up all "foreign Jews" and put them into internment camps and use them for forced labour.

Later in the month General Huntziger removed all Jews, whether officers or men from the French Army.

Pastor Marc Boegner was the only voice raised in opposition to these actions. The silence of the Catholic Bishops was unbroken.

Internment Camps and Escape

After the fall of the Popular Front, Daladier's Government had set up internment camps to detain political refugees, foreigners in general and especially communists of whom some 3,500 had been interned by March 1940.

Some 350,000 Spanish Republican refugees were already interned, especially in the South and near the Pyrenees. These camps of quaintly titled "centres d'hebergemont" , (lodging centres) also received suspicious aliens, criminals and what President Sarkozy would today call "racaille" or 'scum'.

Republican France had prepared the ground well - the French population was not ignorant of these camps or they way their inmates were used as forced labour.

The Pyrenees were the worst camps, at Gurs, 30 people a day died in the winter of 1940/41 - it's cemetery is full of Spanish but also some Jews ... Hannah Arendt was in Gurs - but she escaped after 2 weeks, Arthur Koestler was sent to La Vernet - which he was later to describe as worse than Nazi concentration camps.

By the time of Petains First (others followed) Statut Des Juif there were many camps - Recebedou, Noe, St-Cyprien, Rivesaltes, Rivel, Argeles, Bram. Agde, Saliers, Langlade, Aubagne, Les Milles - by the end of 1940 mthere were up to 50,000 prisoners interendd in the Vichy Zone.

Hannah Arendt eventually escaped with her husband and her mother to the United States with the assistance of the American diplomat Hiram Bingham IV who was US Consulate in Marseille, who illegally issued visas to her and around 2500 other Jewish refugees.

Others he helped with the assistance of Varian Fry who hid people at the Villa Air-Bel until they could be smuggled out. More than 2,200 people were taken across the border to the safety of neutral Portugal from where they could sail to the United States.

Others escaped on ships leaving Marseille for the French colony of Martinique and then onwards to the US. Among Fry's closest associates were Americans Miriam Davenport, a former art student at the Sorbonne, and the heiress Mary Jayne Gold, art freak who liked the "good life" who had set up in Paris in the early 1930s - she wrote a memoir of the time "Crossroads Marseilles 1940," published by Doubleday in 1980.

Those helped by this network included sculptor Jacques Lipchitz, artist Marc Chagall, Nobel Prize winner, Otto Meyerhof who with Hill had determined the process glycolysis in muscle cell metabolism. The sculptor Jean Arp was able to flee to Switzerland where he stayed, Marcel Duchamp chose the US.

The writer Lion Fuchtwanger had chosen to live in Sanary sur Mer with his wife , and did not return to germany when Hitler was made Chancellor. His books were proscribed and [publicly burned in the 1933 book burning . On 25th August 1933, an official Nazi paper, Reichsanzeiger , included Feuchtwanger's name in the first list of those whose German citizenship was revoked because of "disloyalty to the German Reich and the German people."

Because Feuchtwanger had addressed and predicted many of their crimes even before they came to power, Hitler considered him a personal enemy and the Nazis designated Feuchtwanger as the "Enemy of the state number one".

At the fall of France he and his wife were captured and imprisoned in Le Milles internment camp and after his escape to the US via Portugal , he published in 1941, a memoir of his internment, The Devil in France (Der Teufel in Frankreich)

Success (Erfolg)

This novel by Feuchtwanger was started on in 1927, and published in 1930 when the Nazis received 18.3 % of the votes. In the eyes of Goebbels, Feuchtwanger became an un-German Jewish evildoer.

Success bears the subtitle "History of a Providence," i.e. Bavaria. The action is set in Munich seemingly cosmopolitan, but essentially a provincial town spawning National Socialism.

Years before Hitler assumed power Feuchtwanger created the fictional person Rupert Kutzner, who founded the party of "The True Germans."Kutzner "orated in a high and sometimes hysterical voice; the words flowed effortlessly from his broad, pale lips... .

The system of capital and interest, the Jews, and the Pope were to blame for the wretchedness of the Germans. The international ring of the Jewish financiers was trying to destroy the German people, as a tubercle bacillus tries to destroy a healthy lung. Once the parasites were eliminated, a healthy society would be created.

When Kutzner stopped speaking, his thin lips with the faint dark mustache and the sleek hair plastered over his head make his face look like a mask, but as soon as he opened his mouth, his face became curiously mobile with a hysterical vivacity...".

Which is why they burned his books....but he loved cats ...see pic

A good day to bury bad news

India built its bombs outside The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which allows civil nuclear trade in exchange for a pledge from nations not to pursue nuclear weapons has not been signed by many nations - notably Israel and India. India admits building nuclear bombs which were first tested in 1974. For details of Israeli nuclear bomb testing see - Monday, June 19, 2006 When Israel exploded an atomic weapon - the Vela story

Iran has signed the The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and accepts visits by UN staff to examine their utilities and resources.

The US Senate today voted by 86 -13 to end a 30 year ban on trdae in nuclear materials and technology between the US and India. This adds legislative action to the deal agreed by Bush when he visited india in 2005. The decision is based purely on the desire for US trade with India.

This vote now allows India access to US civilian nuclear technology and fuel in return for inspections of its civilian, but not military, nuclear facilities.

The US House of Representatives passed the agreement on Saturday, and the Senate's vote now means President Bush can (and will) sign it into law.

India's 14 nuclear reactors supply some 3% of current elctricity supplies which they plan to boost to 25% by 2050.

India has limited coal and uranium reserves but has massive supplies of throium which they plan to use to fuel their systems in future.

India maintains the right to conduct nuclear tests, but that will negate the deal just signed into law.

Earlier this month, the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) lifted a ban that had denied India access to the international nuclear market (NSG waiver enables member states to provide India full civil nuclear cooperation) . The NSG first met in November 1975 (as a direct result of the Indian bomb tests) in London, and is popularly referred to as the “London Club” (“Club de Londres”).

The NSG Guidelines which the 45 member nations must observe are consistent with, and complement, the various international, legally binding instruments in the field of nuclear non-proliferation. These include the NPT, and the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America (Treaty of Tlatelolco), the South Pacific Nuclear Weapons-Free Zone Treaty (Treaty of Rarotonga), the African Nuclear-Weapons-Free Zone Treaty (Treaty of Pelindaba) and the Treaty on the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapons-Free Zone (Treaty of Bangkok).

On Tuesday, India and France signed a major co-operation pact which paves the way for the sale of French (Areava) nuclear reactors to Delhi.

On September 5th the External Affairs Minister of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee made Statement on the Civil Nuclear Initiative To reiterate India’s stand on disarmament and nonproliferation (text) ...."We remain committed to a voluntary, unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing. We do not subscribe to any arms race, including a nuclear arms race. We have always tempered the exercise of our strategic autonomy with a sense of global responsibility. We affirm our policy of no-first-use of nuclear weapons. "

The US Government, and both Houses have acknowledged India’s no-first-use pledge and, by default, the reality if not the legitimacy of its possession of nuclear weapons.

It would be nice if someone - Condi Rice maybe, could ask Israel to make such a statement.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Sheila C. Bair buys and sells Wa-Mu and wachovia in a weekend ... busy and very clever lady

Sheila C. Bair is the very savvy, smart lady who has run the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) since June 26, 2006.

She took the time to call us overnight to tell us that Citigroup will acquire the banking operations of the Wachovia Corporation, and it wold be announced by the FDIC today. Citigroup will pay $1 a share, or about $2.2 billion.

Sheila said the agency would absorb losses from Wachovia above $42 billion and that it would receive $12 billion in preferred stock and warrants from Citigroup in return for assuming that risk.

“Wachovia did not fail,” Sheila explained, “rather it is to be acquired by Citigroup Inc. on an open-bank basis with assistance from the F.D.I.C.”

Citigroup will acquire most of Wachovia’s assets and liabilities, including $400 billion in deposits and will assume senior and subordinated debt of Wachovia.

Wachovia Corporation will continue to own the retail brokerage firm AG Edwards and the money management arm Evergreen.

The move was necessary, Sheila said simply to avoid serious fallout on economic conditions and financial stability.

“This morning’s decision was made under extraordinary circumstances with significant consultation among the regulators and Treasury,” Sheila told us on a crackly lione from Washington. “This action was necessary to maintain confidence in the banking industry given current financial market conditions.”

This leaves us now with three big (VERY BIG) Americans’ bank's taking in deposits :

Bank of America,
JPMorgan Chase

Cui bono indeed.

Together, those three will dominate the industry, with unrivaled power to set prices for their loans and services. Given their size and reach, the institutions should probably come under greater scrutiny from federal regulators.

History shows that Wachovia was badly hurt by its unwise take over in 2006 of Golden West Financial, a California lender specializing in so-called pay-option mortgages.

The bank also faced mounting losses on loans made to home builders and commercial real estate developers, and its acquisition of A. G. Edwards, a retail brokerage firm, turned out to be problematic.

In June, G. Kennedy Thompson, the bank’s longtime chief executive joined the list of unemployed.

Sheila was fresh from explaining on TV the details of how the FDIC also came to help in the "rescue" of the nation’s largest savings and loan, Washington Mutual, which they "seized" the bank and sold on to J P Morgan Chase.

Robert K. Steel, a former top lieutenant of Henry M. Paulson Jr. at both Goldman Sachs and then the Treasury Department, who took over as Wachovia’s chief executive in July, arrived in New York to handle the negotiations in person, along with David M. Carroll, the bank’s chief deal maker. At 8:15 am. on Saturday, Citigroup and Wells got to look at Wachovia’s books.

Regulators pressed the parties to move quickly. Senior officials at the Federal Reserve in Washington, and its branches in New York, Richmond and San Francisco held weekend discussions with all the banks involved. Top officials at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Treasury were also in the loop.

Timothy F. Geithner, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, personally reached out to executives involved in the process to assess the situation and spur it along. Citigroup and Wells pressed regulators to seize Wachovia and let them buy its assets and deposits, as JPMorgan did with WaMu.

A wider world would beneit from learning more about Sheila and her critical role in the re-shaping if the NY financial universe.

It will soon become evident that her fast, direct action - lubricated by the bro ha ha in Washington has had a wider and successful impact than the Hank and Ben End of the World Show now playing to packed houses on the Hill.

Asto the 104 pages of what has now landed on lawmakers desk snd known as a National Stability Bill ,hich has mushroomed from Hank's original 3 page demands we will leave until alter date . If and when it passes into law.

Iceland freeze not over

See - Thursday, March 27, 2008Iceland - funds freezing up.

The Iceland Government in Reykjavik has bought a 75% stake in the Glitnir bank for €600m (£478m) to prevent it from going bust."The government does not plan to hold its share in the bank for an extended period. The purpose of this action is to enhance stability within the financial system," it said in a statement.

Glitnir is the third largest bank in Iceland, behind Kaupthing and Landsbanki.

After the de-regulation of financial markets in 2003, Icelandic companies that previously had only meagre access to funds were able to expand rapidly.

They did...with some alarming conequences.

The banks have moved into foreign markets with their clients, investing alongside them and building investment bank capabilities.

Landsbanki bought stockbrokers Teather & Greenwood and Bridgewell in London .

Kaupthing bought Singer & Friedlander.

At the time of the post we note above the Daily Telegraph was telling us ..."As Iceland goes, so go the Baltics, the Balkans, Hungary, Turkey, and perhaps South Africa.

All are living far beyond their means, plugging the gaping holes in their accounts with fickle flows of foreign finance. All have let credit grow far above the safe "speed limit", some exceeding 50pc a year."

Icelandic Investment groups in the Uk to watch (very carefully) are

Baugur (investment company) - see Wednesday, April 05, 2006 Arctic warms ? Iceland market cools down ? Baugur CEO faces further charges - they own Mosaic Fashions, Coast, Karen Millen, Oasis, Odille, Principles, Shoe Studio Group, Warehouse, Whistles, Jane Norman, MK One, All Saints, House of Fraser, Booker, Iceland, Woodward Foodservice, Julian Graves and Whittard of Chelsea, Hamleys, Aurum, Goldsmiths, Mappin & Webb, Wyevale Garden Centres, Watches of Switzerland, Debenhams, Woolworths, French Connection, Moss Bros

Arev (investment company)Aspinal of London, Blooming Marvellous, Cruise, Duchamp, Hardy Amies, *** GHOST, Jones Bootmaker, Limeys, Linens 'n Things, Mountain Warehouse, Unisport

Hard Amies .... TODAY "The company recently requested further funding from major shareholder (49%) Arev Brands, which has provided significant financial support for the business. " Andrew Manders, the chairman, is also listed as a director of the privately owned Arev Brands

However, a statement from Hardy Amies this morning said that Arev informed the company late yesterday afternoon that it was unable to provide the required finance.

Directors are considering the options for the company which could involved putting the business into administration.

Cui Bono ?

The concentration of economic / financial power on Wall Street / London /Europe just grows daily. It may look like a financial crisis from down on the pavement but from the some 39th floors it looks real good.

If you seek the author of a crime the Ciceronian rhetoric goes, look to see who benefits.

Well the Titans of the Financial World got just that little bigger and often with funds supplied from Spain - Bank Santander now areprobably the biest private hiolder of mortages in the UK ownong Abbey Life and nowAlliance Leicester and having had the £14 Bn of depositors funds thrown at them along with £4 Bn from the Bank of England to cover deposits unsercured by the FSA scheme.

Mitsubishi UFJ (MTU), Japan's biggest bank by market capitalization, is closing in on a deal to buy a 20% stake in Morgan Stanley (MS) for $8-9B 9( now, remember a regulated retail bank) . An announcement is expected shortly.

Sacks of Gold, ( now, remember a regulated retail bank)has US$% Bn from the Sage of Omaha with maybe another £5 Bn in his saddlebags for shares - plus the proceeds of another US$10 Bn share issue.

Fortis whom we mentioned on Tuesday, July 01, 2008 Fortis Bank makes €8 billion provisions and Chairman talks of US "meltdown" ..Citigroup, GM ... when we suggeste dthey were due to explode, finally have - and spite talks of a BNP Paribas take over have had to be part nationalised with money from the Belgina / Dutch and Luxebougois taxpayers.

Belgium's largest financial-services firm, has taken on board a US $16.3B rescue fundin biggest European bailout since the "credit crisis" began. In exchange for the capital, Belgium will receive a 49% stake in Fortis' Belgian banking unit, the Netherlands will receive a similar stake in the Dutch banking unit, and Luxembourg will receive a 49% stake in convertible-shares in Fortis' Luxembourg banking unit. Fortis will also sell its stake in ABN Amro's consumer banking unit, but no buyer has been identified yet.

In the UK Alastair Darling has unveiled Gordon Browns secret plan to becopme the largest owner of UK Housing stock by now adding the massive portfolio of buy to let properties in the UK.

Whilst the Conservative Party unveils a £1 BN plan to cut the Council Tax by £1.40 a week he has pissed away £4 Bn on shifting the massive depositors base to Bank Santander ( who pay a nugatory £400 MN for the privilege - half the Market Cap at closing of 20pon Friday) (Forbes Santander Strikes Gold--Again ) plus a 197-strong branch network of Bradford & Bingley ...whilst Alastair and Gordon, ever the smart money guys have spent a further further eye watering £41 Bn on behalf of the tax payer for their septic loan book .

This makes Mr Darling the UK's biggest landlord. True to socialist priciples as now presented this is to provide housing, not for the needy, the essential workers ... but for those attracted by the tarted up properties Sarah Beeney style and to secure an income for the newborn wannabe rentier classes of middle England..

If there is a bright spot for the UK taxpayer the Guradian offers one - Under the Banking (Special Provisions) Act 2008 – passed in February as part of Northern Wreck nationalisation the government can claw back any losses from the UK's financial services industry.

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) is borrowing £14bn from the Bank of England to finance the deal - under which the government takes control of £41bn of mortgages while Spain's Santander pays just over £400m for B&B's branch operations and savers - and £4bn from the taxpayer.

The first payments on this loan will fall due September 29th 2009 , when the industry will face a levy of around £450m - a massive increase on this year's £5m levy.

The FSCS has confirmed similar interest payments will be levied again in September 2010 and 2011, which means servicing the BOE loan alone will cost ion exces of £1bn to the uK banking industry - stability ... at a price.

Darling admits his fleet of housing stock may no be thes best ..... "It does have more buy-to-let and self-certification mortgages - where, frankly, people just said what they earned and that figure was taken as fact – than we would like."

(C) Very Seriously Disorganised Criminals 2002/3/4/5/6/7/8/9 - copy anything you wish