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Jun 10, 2011

From The Desk Of Nick Nicolaas - Mining Interactive: Zeal Intelligence Weekly - "PM Summer Doldrums 3" by Adam Hamilton

Dear Friends:
Adam Hamilton has posted his weekly Zeal Intelligence Newsletter on the Mining Interactive Website.
Zeal Intelligence Weekly

Greetings from Howe Street, Vancouver, Canada


The Economist | Selected New Articles: Repression in Bahrain / The Republican Primary / Charlemagne / Language .... and more

Repression in Bahrain: Ghazi Farhan

The Republican primary: Is no Newt good Newt?

Charlemagne: Always waiting for the US cavalry

Buttonwood: Krugman gets it wrong

Language: The man who **** an entire country

Daily chart: Turkish election guide

Online debate: Should banking regulation should be tuned to fit the level of competition?

MarketWatch | Weekly Round: top 10 stories June 6 - 10

Weekly Roundup
JUNE 10, 2011

MarketWatch top 10 stories June 6 - 10

By MarketWatch

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — U.S. stocks closed lower Friday, weighed by concerns over the global economy and a drop in energy stocks, in what became a sixth consecutive week of losses.

The extended slide followed several weeks of economic reports that have largely disappointed investors. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) was down 172.45 points, or 1.4%, at 11.951.91 — its lowest close since March 18. For the week, the blue-chip index shed 1.6%.

The six-week losing period, which has knocked 6.7% from the Dow, is the longest stretch since October 4, 2002, when the index lost 15%.

The S&P 500 Index (SPX) ended down 18.02 points, or 1.4%, at 1,270.98. It's lost 2.2% for the week, its sixth straight loss, or the longest weekly losing stretch since July 2008.

The Nasdaq Composite Index (COMP) fell 41.14 points, or 1.5%, at 2,643.73, losing its grasp of year-to-date gains. The Nasdaq has fallen for five of the past six weeks.

MarketWatch has coverage of this rally of the bears over the weekend, along with features and commentary on everything from commodities to Keynesianism. Please be sure not to miss our Week Ahead videos for Asia, Europe and the United States.

 Europe's Week Ahead: Glencore, Barclays

 Asia's Week Ahead: China CPI, Bank of Japan

 U.S. Week Ahead: Bank rules, retail sales

Tablet war pushes PC makers to focus on R&D

Competition in the tablet sector is pushing personal-computer makers to focus more on research and development and Web-based ecosystems so their products can stand out in an increasingly crowded market. Read MarketWatch's analysis about how tablets, smartphones are other mobile devices are changing innovation in the PC marketplace.

Citigroup customer records hacked

Citigroup suffered a security breach by online hackers, potentially giving them access to data belonging to hundreds of thousands of bank-card customers, according to a report Thursday. Citi reportedly said it discovered the breach in early May, and that it had affected about 1% of its card customers. The breach took place at Citi Account Online, which would potentially expose customer data such as names, account numbers and email addresses. Read MarketWatch coverage of hacking at Citibank.

Five reasons to buy bank stocks now

Here's why you should buy bank stocks: In the words of Warren Buffett, "Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful." Easier said than done, right? So if you are an aggressive investor, stop talking yourself out of banks for a minute and humor me as we cover 5 reasons banks could be strong buys right now. Read MarketWatch commentary from Jeff Reeves.

Soros is selling his gold, should you?

It could be brains. Or it might be intuition. Or it could just be luck. But whatever it is, it has allowed George Soros to read the market right over a long period of time. So when an investor of such legendary ability calls the top of the greatest bull market of our times, it is no great surprise that the world sits up to listen to what the man has to say. In the first quarter of this year, Soros dumped around $800 million of gold. Should you follow his lead? Read Matthew Lynn commentary on MarketWatch.

Cheaper homes hit hardest by price declines

The values on the country's most modestly priced homes took a harder hit than their upscale counterparts during the downturn, according to a report released Monday from Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies. Houses priced at the low end of housing markets typically fell about three times more than those at the upper end in the last year, according to the Center's annual report, "The State of the Nation's Housing." High-end homes are those with original sales prices in the most expensive one-third of all homes in a market; low-end homes are those in the bottom third. Read Amy Hoak's Home Economics column on MarketWatch.

Firms to cut health plans as reform starts

Once provisions of the Affordable Care Act start to kick in during 2014, at least three of every 10 employers will probably stop offering health coverage, a survey released Monday shows. While only 7% of employees will be forced to switch to subsidized-exchange programs, at least 30% of companies say they will "definitely or probably" stop offering employer-sponsored coverage, according to the study published in McKinsey Quarterly. The survey of 1,300 employers says those who are keenly aware of the health-reform measure probably are more likely to consider an alternative to employer-sponsored plans, with 50% to 60% in this group expected to make a change. It also found that for some, it makes more sense to switch. Read about future of employee health plans, on MarketWatch.

Why you need to own more international stocks

Now is the time for all indexed investors to put their stock portfolios into global mode. For the past 25 years or so, a dual perspective has prevailed — domestic equities for 70% to 90% of a portfolio and "international" (that is, non-U.S.) equities for the remainder. There were lots of reasons for this approach, but the main one was that the U.S. market, as the biggest and most vibrant on the planet, could satisfy most investors' needs. "International" was a dessert-like diversifier: fine in moderation but don't overdo it. Read John Prestbo's Indexed Investor column on MarketWatch.

After-hours trades still risky

Nearly a dozen years after becoming an option for individuals, after-hours stock trading is risky for retail investors, as volume remains a sliver of overall trade and in fact has declined over time. Read MarketWatch story about the pitfalls of evening or premarket trading for retail investors.

Who's Big Daddy for big banks? Ben Bernanke

The Federal Reserve proposes making annual decisions on whether the country's largest banks can pay dividends or repurchase stock. Big banks with at least $50 billion in assets would submit annual capital plans for review by the central bank. Read more about how big banks may need Fed OK for dividends, buybacks on MarketWatch.

Jobs's legacy: ‘Spaceship' building

Apple Inc. (AAPL) Chief Executive Steve Jobs will preserve his design legacy with the company's plans for a new spaceship-like building, a design that is likely to be approved and one that will put Silicon Valley on the architectural map. Read more about Apple's proposed headquarters in Therese Poletti's Tech Tales on MarketWatch.

The Washington Post Afternoon Edition: THE FIX: The fall of the house of Gingrich

The Washington Post

Politics Afternoon Edition

1) THE FIX: The fall of the house of Gingrich
How the former House speaker’s presidential campaign went so wrong, so quickly.
» Read full article

Sarah Palin e-mails show concern about media
Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin’s e-mails show a constant concern with how she is portrayed in the media, on matters big and small.
» Read full article

Gates knocks European allies in farewell speech
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates rebuked some of America’s staunchest allies Friday, saying the United States has a “dwindling appetite” to serve as the heavyweight partner in the military order that has underpinned the U.S. relationship with Europe since the end of World War II.
» Read full article

Pentagon Papers to be declassified on Monday
The disclosure of the Pentagon Papers four decades ago stands as one of the most significant leaks of classified material in American history. Ever since, in the eyes of the government, the voluminous record of U.S. involvement in Vietnam has remained something else: classified.
» Read full article

2CHAMBERS: Purported Gaddafi letter presses Congress for cease-fire
Some congressional leaders have received a letter purportedly written by Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi calling for a cease-fire and for the funding of humanitarian aid in the nearly three-month-long conflict
» Read full article

NYT: Afternoon Business News: Saudi Arabia Defies OPEC and Raises Oil Output


Saudi Arabia Defies OPEC and Raises Oil Output

The price of oil fell sharply after Saudi Arabia decided to counteract any possible shortages in the market.

Airlines, Flush Now With Revenue and Passengers, Fear a Downturn

Despite rising fares and multiple fees, carriers have managed to keep their planes full. But there are signs the situation may cool after a hot summer vacation season.

Greece Details New Austerity Measures

The four-year economic plan includes new taxes, including levies on owners of yachts and swimming pools, as well as cuts to public spending and a winnowing of the civil service.

Spain Approves Measure to Free Up Labor Market

The government is hoping to bring down the highest jobless rate in Europe, but critics say too much in the package diluted or left open to have much impact.

At E3, a Crowded Field, All Eager to Impress

New games including Battlefield 3, Fruit Ninja Kinect and Rage were among those previewed at this year's E3 convention in Los Angeles.

Financial & Forex Info| Reuters - Technology Report:

Spanish police arrested three men suspected to be members of the hacker group Anonymous, charging them with organizing cyber attacks against the websites of Sony, Spanish banks BBVA and Bankia, and Italian energy group Enel SpA-- but not the recent massive hacking of PlayStation gamers. Anonymous responded by threatening to retaliate for the arrests: "We are Legion, so EXPECT US," the group said on its official Twitter feed.

EU countries agreed on tougher sanctions against people conducting cyber attacks. Under the new rules, which have to be agreed by the European Parliament, hackers would face a sentence of at least five years if found guilty of causing serious damage to IT systems.

Nokia was expected to report a loss for this quarter and next as it cuts prices to try to prevent more customers defecting to rivals' smartphones, a Reuters poll found. Analysts also forecast a meager profit in the normally buoyant fourth quarter, as the once-undisputed leader in mobile phones loses the initiative to smartphones like Apple's iPhone and devices based on Google's Android software.

Research In Motion will roll out its PlayBook tablet computer in 16 countries outside North America over the next month amid roiling criticism of its competitive stance. But analysts warn it risks repeating the tepid North American start, with limited marketing clipping sales potential.

Apple was accused of copying an app that was developed and submitted for use in its App Store by a student, which it subsequently rejected. Apple unveiled the app as part of a set of features for the upcoming iOS 5, which included the same wireless-syncing functionality as developer Greg Hughes's WiFi Sync and a near identical logo, writes The Register's Dan Goodin.

Nintendo president puzzled by investor reaction to Wii U
June 09, 2011 09:20 PM ET
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Nintendo President Satoru Iwata said he was surprised at the tumble in the company's share price following the unveiling of a successor to its smash hit Wii games console, adding that the new gadget had to be played to be understood. | Full Article
Pandora increases IPO value by 48 percent
June 10, 2011 01:08 PM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Online radio company Pandora Media Inc raised the proposed value of its initial public offering by almost 50 percent, hoping to catch the investor fever that has taken Internet companies such as LinkedIn to new heights. | Full Article
Shanda Games says online game hacked
June 10, 2011 09:39 AM ET
(Reuters) - Chinese online game developer Shanda Games Ltd said one of its online games was hacked earlier this month, and it had to close about 5,000 accounts that had taken advantage of a design flaw. | Full Article
AMD's new chips could force Intel to cut prices
June 10, 2011 09:58 AM ET
(Reuters) - Advanced Micro Devices Inc could win a larger pie of the desktop PC market helped by its newly-launched Llano and Bulldozer chips, unless Intel Corp lowered its own prices, Macquarie Research said. | Full Article
Tweeting ex-president stirs up Colombian politics
June 10, 2011 04:14 PM ET
BOGOTA (Reuters) - Colombia's ex-president Alvaro Uribe is fuming about the direction his successor is taking. | Full Article

Financial & Forex Info | Reuters - Daily Investor Update: Dow, S&P end sixth losing week - is seventh on tap?

Dow, S&P end sixth losing week - is seventh on tap?
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Dow and S&P 500 closed out their sixth week of losses on Friday as further signs of a global economic slowdown set the stage for more losses ahead. | Full Article

Fed prepares for last spurt of easy money flood
June 10, 2011 04:11 PM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The flood of Federal Reserve money that has supported Wall Street and the rest of the U.S. economy for 2-1/2 years will shrink to a trickle with the conclusion of the Fed's bond purchases announced on Friday. | Full Article
Former TBW execs get prison time for roles in fraud
June 10, 2011 02:01 PM ET
Alexandria, Virginia (Reuters) - Two former senior Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp executives were sentenced on Friday to several years in prison for their roles in a nearly $3 billion fraud that took down the big lender and a major bank. | Full Article
Fed expanding capital tests for banks
June 10, 2011 04:36 PM ET
WASHINGTON/CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve will subject more banks to annual stress tests to determine whether they have enough capital and can raise their dividends. | Full Article
Import prices rise for 8th straight month
June 10, 2011 02:54 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Import prices rose for an eighth straight month in May despite a drop in fuel costs, with the year-on-year increase reaching its highest level in nearly three years, according to data on Friday. | Full Article

May budget deficit less than half prior year's
June 10, 2011 03:44 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The budget deficit fell by more than half in May from year-earlier levels to $57.64 billion as tax revenues continued to rise, the Treasury Department reported on Friday. | Full Article
Clinton says not pursuing World Bank job
June 10, 2011 01:58 PM ET
LUSAKA (Reuters) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday said she was not in discussions over the top job at the World Bank and that she was not pursing the post. | Full Article
Helicopter gunships fire at Syria protest: witnesses
June 10, 2011 03:23 PM ET
AMMAN (Reuters) - Syrian helicopter gunships fired machineguns to disperse a large pro-democracy protest in the town of Maarat al-Numaan on Friday, witnesses said, in the first reported use of air power to quell protests in Syria's uprising. | Full Article
Fed's Dudley: Growth to pick up, but risks increased
June 10, 2011 10:15 AM ET
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. economy will regain some momentum in the second half of 2011, but the pace of growth will remain "painfully slow" for many and the risks to recovery have increased, a top Federal Reserve official said on Friday. | Full Article
Clinton warns Africa of China's economic embrace
June 10, 2011 04:15 PM ET
LUSAKA (Reuters) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday warned Africa that China does not always have its interests at heart as economic ties expand, and offered the United States as an alternative. | Full Article

Germany pins down E.coli: "It's the bean sprouts"
Deaths no higher in coffee lovers with heart disease
Crawling culprit seen in urban kids' asthma
Russia set to end EU vegetable import ban
Evidence for acupuncture PMS relief is shaky

Financial and Forex Info | Kitco NewYork Market Close Report

New York Market Close Jun 10/11 05:22 PM EDT

MarketWatch | Market Pulse: Stocks drop for sixth week; Dow off 172 points

By Laura Mandaro  

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stocks tumbled Friday on worries about the global economy and a selloff in energy stocks, ensuring the sixth week of losses for the benchmark indexes. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA -1.09% ended down 172.45 points, or 1.4%, to 11,951.91, led by 3% drops in Pfizer Inc. PFE +0.87% and Travelers Co. TRV +0.36% shares. The S&P 500 SPX -1.40% lost 18.02 points, or 1.4%, to 1,270.98, with energy stocks off the most after oil prices fell nearly 3%. The Nasdaq Composite COMP -1.53% was down 41.14 points, or 1.5%, to 2,643.73. For the week, the Dow average has lost 1.6%, the S&P 500 has fallen 2.2%, and the Nasdaq Composite has fallen 3.3%. For the Dow and the S&P 500, it was the sixth straight week of losses.

MarketWatch | Personal Finance Daily: Real-estate scam hurts home prices

Personal Finance Daily
JUNE 10, 2011

Real-estate scam hurts home prices

By MarketWatch

Don't miss these top stories:

Is there such a thing as shorting your own house, or maybe "naked foreclosure"? Those are some of the terms my colleagues at MarketWatch came up with when told about Lew Sichelman's Realty Q&A column today, which describes another housing scam called "flopping."

Sichelman says that "like flipping, flopping is the intentional misrepresentation of house prices. But whereas flipping usually takes place when housing prices are rising, flopping occurs when values are depressed." The result, he writes, can be a significant hit on neighborhood housing prices because the "sale" of the flopped house becomes a comparable for future sales, and also, the practice will cost lenders an estimated $375 million this year. Sometimes the owner is involved, along with a real-estate agents, and sometimes the seller is the victim — especially if they live in a state where the law allows a lender to pursue a deficiency judgment against the seller.

Also in today's Personal Finance lineup, Kristen Gerencher looks at the threat from foodborne illnesses, such as the E. coli outbreak in Europe, and why Americans — despite the risks — may not be as careful about our eating habits as we should be.

Anne Stanley , Managing Editor, Personal Finance

Real-estate scam that's devastating prices

"Flopping," which involves an intentional misrepresentation of house prices, can have a devastating impact on property values, Lew Sichelman says.
Read more: Real-estate scam that's devastating home prices.

E. coli outbreak typifies foodborne illness threat

Americans are once again watching what they eat and wondering why it's so hard to keep food from being contaminated with harmful microorganisms as it moves along the supply chain. But we don't change our eating habits for long.
Read more: E. coli outbreak typifies foodborne illness threat.

Obama's top 4 tips to win financial security

During a give-and-take with top White House officials on personal-finance issues, there were some nuggets of wisdom that clearly applied to everyday investors and regular folks planning their retirement.
Read more: Obama's top 4 tips to win financial security.


Gold investors need nerves of steel

Many investors have a great love affair with gold, but as with any relationship, they'll have to work hard to get the most out of it, be patient, and most of all, understand the reasons for gold's actions.
Read more: Gold investors need nerves of steel.

Why is the bond market rallying?

Investors are still focused on the return of their capital, not the return on it.
Read more: Why is the bond market rallying?

Why commodities still belong in your portfolio

The recent nosedive for many commodities has done little to shake money managers' belief that natural resources are on track for long-term gains as China and other developing countries grow richer.
Read more: Why commodities still belong in your portfolio

5 money moves one raging stock bull is making now

U.S. stocks notched their first win so far in June on Thursday after six straight losing sessions, but week-to-week market gyrations don't much faze Laszlo Birinyi. He has bigger things on his mind — like a 60%-plus gain for the Standard & Poor's 500 over the next few years.
Read more: 5 money moves one raging stock bull is making now.

Can you escape plunging bond yields?

There may be only one life raft left for ordinary savers — TIPS — says Brett Arends.
Read more: Can you escape plunging bond yields?

Making the trend your friend

The stock market in late May fell below its 50-day moving average, and is now only a couple of percent above its 200-day moving average.
Read more: Making the trend your friend.


Big banks may need Fed OK for dividends, buybacks

Following up on stress tests conducted in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008, the Federal Reserve on Friday proposed having big banks with at least $50 billion in assets submit annual capital plans for review.
Read more: Big banks may need Fed OK for dividends, buybacks.

China exports slow, but surplus widens

China's trade surplus for May expands from April, though the pace of growth is slower than analysts' expectations, as exports growth cools and imports accelerate.
Read more: China exports slow, but surplus widens.

Fed's Hoenig has no interest in zero interest

Thomas Hoenig, the Kansas City Fed president who's long been arguing that the economy is strong enough to stand on its own.
Read more: Fed's Hoenig has no interest in zero interest.

Greek default is inevitable

There is no solution to Greece's problems without debt relief, which means, without euphemisms, default, writes Argentine economist Mario Blejer.
Read more: Greek default is inevitable.

Things could get ugly as debt cloud grows

As QE2 ends, the debate over an increase in the debt ceiling will move to center stage. Dire warnings and brinksmanship from both parties will fill the headlines, airways and blogosphere this summer, showing Washington at its worst.
Read more: Things could get ugly as debt cloud grows.

Financial and Forex Info | Kitco London Fix Market Report

London Fix Fri Jun 10 00:00:00 EDT 2011
USD 1541.00 1529.25   37.38 1842.00
817.00 0.00
UK 945.69 941.89   22.93 1132.85
502.45 497.70
EURO 1064.45 1061.02   25.84 1273.85
565.00 559.95