“Learn a trade in the European Army. Send your applications to the following email or postal address…” Such slogans do not yet appear on posters displayed in the metros of Berlin, Rome, Warsaw or Madrid. Yet, if the EU did have its own army, it would be the biggest recruiter on the continent and an important provider of jobs, both direct and indirect. Continue reading
WASHINGTON (AP) — Four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.
The findings come as President Barack Obama tries to renew his administration’s emphasis on the economy, saying in recent speeches that his highest priority is to “rebuild ladders of opportunity” and reverse income inequality. Continue reading
Downtown Detroit has long been one of the nation’s worst housing markets. Home values have plummeted. Vacancies abound. And foreclosure numbers are through the roof. Not that that’s surprising; who’d want to live in a neighborhood with soaring unemployment and the highest rate of violent crime in the US?
That might deter most prospective home buyers. But some look at Detroit’s hard times and see profit.
Specifically, bargain-hunting Chinese investors. Since the bankruptcy was announced on July 18, talk of snapping up Detroit housing for a pittance has picked up on Sina Weibo (link in Chinese), reports Sina Finance. And it appears to be translating into real interest; Caroline Chen, a real estate broker in Troy, Michigan, says she’s received “tons of calls” from people in mainland China. Continue reading
Germany’s chancellor Angela Merkel has a simple message for the millions young people in the eurozone who are out of work – move.
In an interview, Mrs Merkel said the high levels of youth unemployment in Europe represent a “huge crisis”, comparing the eurozone’s difficulties with post-Communist eastern Germany.
Speaking to the BBC, she said that when unemployment soared after the fall of the Berlin Wall, “many young people … only had jobs because they moved to the south.” Mrs Merkel said: “I think it’s unfair that it is the young people especially who have to pay the bill for something they didn’t do. Continue reading
This is no time to be complacent. Massive economic problems are erupting all over the globe, but most people seem to believe that everything is going to be just fine. In fact, a whole bunch of recent polls and surveys show that the American people are starting to feel much better about how the U.S. economy is performing. Unfortunately, the false prosperity that we are currently enjoying is not going to last much longer. Just look at what is happening in Europe. The eurozone is now in the midst of the longest recession that it has ever experienced. Just look at what is happening over in Asia. Economic growth in India is the lowest that it has been in a decade and the Japanese financial system is beginning to spin wildly out of control.
One of the only places on the entire planet where serious economic problems have not already erupted is in the United States, and that is only because we have “kicked the can down the road” by recklessly printing money and by borrowing money at an unprecedented rate. Unfortunately, the “sugar high” produced by those foolish measures is starting to wear off. We are going to experience a massive amount of economic pain along with the rest of the world – it is just a matter of time.
But for the moment, there are a lot of skeptics out there. Continue reading
Spain’s National Statistics Institute says the country’s unemployment rate shot up to a record 27.2 percent in the first quarter of 2013.
The agency said Thursday the number of people unemployed rose by 237,400 people in the first three months of the year compared to the previous quarter, taking the total to 6.2 million.
The huge sums poured into the global financial system by major central banks have eased bond market pressure on Spain, but the cuts Madrid has made in spending to regain investors’ confidence have left it deep in recession. Continue reading
Across Europe, the people are protesting. But they’re not fed up with a particular party or person. They’re rallying against the whole political system.
Between 100,000 and 200,000 people turned out to protest in Bulgaria last Sunday. That’s a lot of people for a small country—around 2 percent of the whole population. “Bulgarians rarely overcome their apathy to go out on the streets,” notes the EU Observer. “They don’t usually believe they can make a difference by protesting.”
What prompted them to turn out this time? The government had already stepped down a few days earlier. They were protesting against no one. Continue reading
America faces a seminal reality: We are broke, and we are getting broker by the day. This is the real “fiscal cliff” the country is about to jump off, not the artificial one consuming Washington. Instead of confronting our looming insolvency, the electorate voted to take the plunge. It ratified Mr. Obama’s drive to erect the equivalent of a Franco-German welfare state. Consider Obamacare, the massive stimulus, failed green-energy boondoggles, record numbers on food stamps, constant extensions of unemployment benefits, public housing subsidies, unprecedented government spending and free contraception.
Voters chose economic security over individual opportunity, handouts instead of self-reliance, statism over capitalism. Rather than rebuking Mr. Obama, they rewarded him. Continue reading
A deeply troubled Europe faces two years of even weaker-than-expected economic growth that will lack the heft to ease its high jobless rates.
The European Central Bank now sees the euro zone economy contracting by 0.5 per cent this year, slightly worse than its original projection of 0.4 per cent. The new 2013 forecast for the 17-nation group calls for a contraction of 0.3 per cent, compared with an earlier projection of 0.5-per-cent growth, while 2014 would see growth of 1 per cent. Continue reading
… And then the dominant nations made plans to whittle down, to say, ten nations or so — with all roads leading to Berlin.
The 17-member eurozone could soon get its own parliament with power over nations’ taxation, spending and economic policy, under plans being drawn up by Europe’s four presidents, German paper Handelsblatt reported September 6.
European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker presented an initial report on their proposals for the future of the eurozone in June. They’re due to present their final proposal at a summit beginning October 18, with a final report and road map due to be adopted by EU leaders at a summit on December 13.
The new eurozone parliament would be made up of both members of the European Parliament (meps) and representatives from national parliaments.
Their other proposals include giving the European Commission the power to veto national budgets.
The radical reforms go beyond any other proposals for political union so far, and would require changes to EU treaties. Several meps have already spoken out against them.
Separately, Barroso called for the EU to take on more power in social, labor and education policy, as Europe struggles with high unemployment. “We need to aim for an integrated EU policy approach and better coordination of employment and social policy at national and EU level,” he said in a speech at the Employment Policy Conference, September 6. “Not only employment and social policy, but also education policy ….
Full article: EU Leaders Draft Plans for a Superstate (The Trumpet)
The United States government has four interrelated motivations for destroying the value of the dollar:
1. Creating money out of thin air on a massive basis is all that stands between the current state of hidden depression, and overt depression with unemployment levels in excess of those seen in the US Great Depression of the 1930s.
2. It is the weapon of choice being used to wage currency war and reboot US economic growth.
3. It is the most effective way to meet not just current crushing debt levels, but to deal with the rapidly approaching massive generational crisis of paying for Boomer retirement promises.
4. Political survival and enhanced power for incumbent politicians.
In this article we will take a holistic approach to how individual short term, medium and long term pressures all come together to leave the government with effectively no choice but to create a high rate of inflation. If you have savings, if you rely on a pension, if you are a retiree or Boomer with retirement accounts – any one of these four fundamental motivations is individually a grave peril to your future standard of living. However, it is only when we put all four together and see how the motivations reinforce each other, that we can understand what the government has been and will be doing, and then begin the search for personal solutions.
Reason Two: To Hide A Depression
The second government motivation is to hide a depression, and while you wouldn’t know it from government press releases or media headlines, there has been a gaping hole in the US economy since 2008, as illustrated below:
During the first round of the financial crisis, the US private economy nearly collapsed, threatening to send the US economy straight into deep depression. We’re talking about a $1.3 trillion private sector collapse that was contained only by the government fantastically increasing the money it spent, even while tax revenues were falling. The creation of huge government deficits has been all that has maintained even a facade of semi-normalcy. Remove the mechanism of the government creating money so that it can spend what it doesn’t have, and it is straight to official Great Depression-level unemployment in months, as illustrated in the graph below.
Full article: Four Reasons Why the Government Is Destroying the Dollar (Financial Sense Online)
“This year is going to be a bad one,” said Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy in a press conference. He reaffirmed the previous forecast of a 1.7 percent shrink in GDP in 2012. The country forecast 24.3 percent unemployment in March, and Spainiards under 25 have a 52 percent unemployment rate.
Rajoy has cut government programs and raised taxes to combat the deficit, leading to protests.
Spain is the fourth and largest country in the euro zone to accept financial assistance, joining Greece, Ireland and Portugal. Rajoy stressed that the aid was limited to the country’s banks, which have been weighed down by the global recession and toxic real estate holdings, and avoided the term “bailout.”
Full article: Spain’s Prime Minister: “This Year Is Going To Be A Bad One” (International Business Times)