Fed’s Kashkari Says “We Won’t See Next Crisis Coming”, Compares Banks To Risky Nuclear Reactors

Coming as a replacement to perhaps the biggest dove in Fed history, few were expecting former Goldman and Pimco staffer Neel Kashkari to be as vocally outspoken on a topic that is so near and dear to regulators everywhere: their own cluelessness, and more importantly, the topic of “too big to fail” banks, which according to the Fed are a pillar of stability in an unstable world, and which according to Kashkari are anything but.

It is doubly surprising because it was none other than Kashkari himself who served as one of the key architects of the bank bailout plan in the aftermath of the financial crisis. Shortly thereafter he lived for an extended period in the wild. Continue reading

Miscalculation: Iran Gets Twice As Much In Sanctions Relief, State Department Blames Treasury Department

The White House has been claiming Iran, as part of the nuclear deal with the Obama administration, would only get access to $50 billion immediately but it turns out that number was off by a lot. Continue reading

Debt Limit Coming a Month Earlier Than Expected (Updated)

Updated 5:56 p.m. | The Treasury Department said Thursday it would reach the debt limit a bit earlier than was expected by many on Capitol Hill.

Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew told Congress in a new letter that thanks in part to lower-than-expected quarterly tax receipts, the extraordinary measures to forestall breaching the debt limit, combined with the new revenues, will run their course just a week after the resignation of Speaker John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, takes effect. Continue reading

China’s Influence Set to Climb as U.S. Thwarted on New Bank

Power VisionChinese President Xi Jinping’s vision of achieving the same great-power status enjoyed by the U.S. received a major boost this month when the U.K., Germany, France and Italy signed on to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. The AIIB will have authorized capital of $100 billion and starting funds of about $50 billion.

Canada is considering joining, which would leave the U.S. and Japan as the only Group of Seven holdouts as they question the institution’s governance and environmental standards. Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s cabinet approved negotiations to join too, according to a government official who asked not to be identified as the decision hasn’t been made public. Continue reading

U.S. Sanctions Push Putin Toward His Dream of A New Financial System

Although Monday’s sanctions will hurt Russia in the short term, they will also force Putin to step up his efforts to weaken U.S. influence over the global economy, which so far has been “little more than wishful thinking because of the difficult reforms it would require”

A little over a year ago, in early March 2013, the Russian state energy czar Igor Sechin made his American debut at an oil summit in Houston, Texas, reportedly accompanied by armed guards equipped with a K-9 unit. The speech he gave that day at the СERAWeek conference, an annual gathering of energy titans from around the world, was part of a pit stop for Sechin. He was on his way to a more high profile event, the funeral of his old friend Hugo Chavez, the truculently anti-American President of oil-rich Venezuela. But since he was passing through the Western hemisphere anyway, Sechin clearly felt it was worthwhile to court some American investors. “I call for us to work together,” he told the audience that day, according to Russia’s Vedomosti daily, “to drive our business for mutual benefit.” Continue reading

Iran builds up its ‘foreign legion’ in Syria

BEIRUT, Lebanon (UPI) — Western intelligence services have made much of Hezbollah’s military support for the embattled Damascus regime in Syria’s civil war, but there’s another, less well-known threat emerging there.

That’s the growing force of Iraqi Shiite fighters who’re also fighting to keep Syrian President Bashar Assad in power.

Many of them were trained by Hezbollah and Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps to fight the Americans in Iraq, and now form a major element in Iran’s new “foreign legion,” intelligence officers and military experts say. Continue reading

Iran’s elite commando force running oil sector, bypassing sanctions

Time and time again, history has proven that third-world economies have no bottom, no matter the amount or severity of sanctions. So long as China and Russia keep backing the Iranian regime, and as long as energy resources are in high demand world-wide, they will likely never be stopped without resorting to war.

WASHINGTON — The United States has determined that the Islamic
Revolutionary Guard Corps was directing Iran’s state-owned oil sector.

The U.S. Treasury Departrment said the state-owned National Iranian Oil Co. was controlled by IRGC, which was helping the firm bypass international sanctions on Teheran’s energy sector.

Treasury said IRGC was increasing its control over National Iranian Oil as the elite military sought clients for Iran’s sanctioned crude oil exports.

“Under the current Iranian regime, the IRGC’s influence has grown within NIOC,” Treasury said on Sept. 24.

Full article: Iran’s elite commando force running oil sector, bypassing sanctions (World Tribune)