Is the Federal Reserve Right?

Federal Reserve

    At the recent FOMC meeting, Bernanke was not clear about timing and even course of the Federal Reserve in ending bond buying program.  Perhaps intentionally, his uncertainty created a lot of volatility in the market. Given this volatility, I think it would be very difficult for the Federal Reserve to signal any type of exit strategy without causing some form of market response. In a way, it makes Federal Reserve a hostage to the markets. … [Read more...]

Graduates – Live a Little Without Stretching Yourself Thin

Brandon Foster Gray

by Brandon Foster-Gray This one is for the recent college graduates out there, or undergrads looking to graduate in the next year or two. This post involves a bit of math, but put away your calculator; I already did the work for you. Before we get started, I want to ask if you have seen the classic scene from The Cosby Show, where Dr. Huxtable uses Monopoly money to explain to Theo how the real world works. If you have not seen it, do check it … [Read more...]

Foreign Currency Losses Were Telegraphed in Advance

Forex graphic #1

In a recent Wall Street Journal article by Alex Frangos, ““Top Banks Missed Call Y100 Level Soon,” it was reported that not a single analyst from 15 financial institutions expected the Japanese Yen to fall to 100 per US Dollar.  Across the board, investors in traditional safe haven assets such as gold and foreign currency were caught unprepared by the impact of Quantitative Easing III and other money creating efforts by the world's central … [Read more...]

Jamie Dimon: Head or Tails

J.P. Morgan boss--Jamie Dimon

    Legends often die a slow, painful death on Wall Street with an inevitable collapse at the end.  That was the story for Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns, and a host of others.  It is also a pattern that seems to be repeating itself with Jamie Dimon, the venerable Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of JP Morgan, considered by many to be the standard bearer for blue chip banking firms. Like so many others, however, JP Morgan … [Read more...]

Can Cyprus Remain a Foreign Exchange Haven?

Cyprus bank

In much the same way that profits earned abroad by American companies are not kept physically offshore, foreign exchange, brokers in Cyprus have been alerting clients that their accounts are not under threat from any confiscatory measures like the savings accounts for the citizens of the island nation. Due to a favorable regulatory regime, Cyprus is one of the top five foreign exchange trading hubs for brokers.  While the gross domestic … [Read more...]

Currency Survival In The European Debt Crisis

European markets

What has been perhaps the most significant factor in the European Debt Crisis for the currencies markets has not been the actual event itself, but the reaction of global central bankers. The rounds of quantitative easing that have been used to combat falling asset prices have engendered profound consequences not previously considered. Certainly among those roiling the markets has been the detachment of gold from its traditional link to fiat … [Read more...]

The TRUE Cost of Corporate Greed

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The news of layoffs seems to be the new “normal” in financial industry.  As banks stray out of traditional areas and it’s the rank and file who seem to take the hit, the cost of a return to normalcy is incredibly high. The True cost of corporate greed is being shown. UBS has agreed to pay about $1.5 billion to settle a portion of the claims against it for securities trading violations. And now there are 10,000 layoffs looming as part of … [Read more...]

Bailout Tax Credit? Some Taxpayers Might Have To Give It Back!

Millions of Americans are just about to enjoy their small break from President Barack Obama's "Making Work Pay" tax credit.  However, they are in for an unpleasant surprise next spring.  The government is going to want some of that money back and IRS didn't tell anyone about it. The "Making Work Pay" provision of the recently enacted bailout plan will provide a refundable tax credit.   The credit pays workers 6.2 percent of their earned … [Read more...]