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Jan 23, 2015

Bloomberg View | Share The VIew - January 23, 2015: Congress, Netanyahu and Obama.

Bloomberg View
Share The View


The Editors: "With Congress's invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address a joint session on March 3, the fight between President Barack Obama and his opponents on Capitol Hill over policy toward Iran has taken a bizarre turn." Read more...

A. Gary Shilling: "U.S. housing activity remains weak despite six years of federal government aid, strong interest from overseas buyers, rock-bottom interest rates and massive purchases of mortgage bonds by the Federal Reserve. Does this mean housing may never spring back to its pre-recession levels?" Read more...

John D. Arnold: "In late 2014 and now this past week, federal prosecutors indicted traders for violating anti-spoofing laws. ... Until I retired in 2012, I was one of the largest traders of commodity futures. ... I don't believe spoofing should be outlawed. Just the opposite: Given how markets now function, I believe that spoofers are beneficial." Read more...

Leonid Bershidsky: The Vladimir Putin ideological apparatus -- both its public and private tentacles -- "is suffering ruthless cost cuts. For all its Soviet nostalgia, Putin's Russia is a quasi-capitalist corporation, after all."Read more...

Noah Smith: "It's become almost conventional wisdom that throwing more money at public education doesn't produce results. But what if conventional wisdom is wrong?" Read more...

Katie Benner (Read the news roundup)
  • Who made what money on the Box IPO? Read more...
  • Dan Primack and Erin Griffith explain why there are so many billion-dollar startups: Read more...
  • CEO Tim Cook made $9.2 million last year, more than double his 2013 compensation: Read more...
Matt Levine (Read the news roundup)
Jonathan Bernstein (Read the news roundup)
  • Alan Abramowitz, at the Crystal Ball, looks at the relationship between presidential approval ratings and election results when the president isn't on the ballot: Read more...
  • More research on public financing and polarization, this time from Seth Masket and Michael G. Miller at the Monkey Cage: Read more...
  • I liked Dan Drezner's reaction to the Boehner-Netanyahu flap: Read more...
Barry Ritholtz (Read the news roundup)
  • McDonald's fixes its marketing, Chipotle fixes its product: Read more...
  • Alternative assets approach $7T despite headwinds:
  • Best books for investors:

Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) News Release - January 23, 2015: Florida Man Sentenced to 21 Months in Federal Prison for $433,000 Fraud Scheme

Michael Ramdat was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and ordered to pay restitution for a fraud scheme he perpetrated against small business owners and others seeking lines of credit across the nation, announced the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program.
Read the news release here.
Follow SIGTARP on Twitter @SIGTARP, here.
To report allegations of fraud, waste, abuse, mismanagement, or misrepresentations involving the taxpayer-funded Troubled Asset Relief Program, call (877) SIG-2009 or send confidential information to SIGTARP via an online Hotline form 
Audit reports and quarterly reports to Congress about the management and transparency of TARP programs are posted here.
SIGTARP welcomes comments and suggestions.  You may reach us at the phone number and mailing address below: 
Phone:   (202) 927-8940
Mail:    Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program 
               1801 L Street NW
               Washington, DC  20220

CMI Spot Prices as of Closing Trading in New York on January 23, 2015.

Live GOLD Bullion Prices
Gold Krugerrands, Gold Eagles, More...




Gold Eagles

1 oz American Gold Eagles (random years)
3 coin minimum - $30.00 S&H on orders less than 10 coins
$49.00 over spot

Spot Prices as of close of trading in New York

Friday, January 23, 2015











The Washington Post | The Switch on January 23, 2015: Did Congress, the media and the FCC all misunderstand what Verizon said on net neutrality? Verizon thinks.

The Washington Post
The Switch
Today's technology and tech policy news  •  Fri., Jan. 23, 2015

Did Congress, the media and the FCC all misunderstand what Verizon said on net neutrality? Verizon thinks so.
In December, Verizon chief financial officer Fran Shammo told a group of investors that if regulators adopted aggressive open Internet rules, they wouldn't stop the company from upgrading its network to provide faster, better service.  Read full article »

What Eric Schmidt meant when he said ‘the Internet will disappear’
Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt is making a lot of headlines Friday over a comment he made at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland."The Internet will disappear," Schmidt said during a panel discussion when asked for a prediction on the future of the Web.  Read full article »
Shadowmatic: Try your eye at shadow puppets
ShadowmaticTry your eye at shadow puppetsThis game requires you to look at things a little differently. Shadowmatic, as the title indicates, lets players head back to the nursery and explore the many facets of shadow puppets. Remember being young and convinced that the shadow of the tree outside was a monster? It’s the same idea, though far less scary.   Read full article »
The Washington Post. The all-new app is now on the Fire tablet.
Google Translate: Chip away at some language barriers
Google TranslateChip away at some language barriersGoogle this month released a major update to its Translate app with a super-nifty function that lets you translate signs by simply pointing your phone camera at them. The feature works when translating basic text between English and Spanish, Portuguese, French, Russian, Italian and German. So if you’re traveling and need to know exactly what that street sign says, this should be a great feature for you. Sometimes the camera has trouble finding words — particularly if you aren’t holding it steady — but it’s not bad for a free app.   Read full article »
Innovations: This device thinks it can be the last smartphone you will ever need
By now, upgrading a smartphone has gotten fairly routine, so much so that it seems like consumers often do so simply out of habit. It’s a costly one, however, with consumers coughing up over $11 billon each year for a new shiny gadget. Much of these expenses are often hidden in carrier contracts.    Read full article »
The Switchboard: The Winklevoss twins want to make the ‘Nasdaq of Bitcoin’
Published every weekday, the Switchboard is your morning helping of hand-picked stories from the Switch team.Join us today for our weekly live chat, Switchback. We'll kick things off at 11 a.m. Eastern. You can submit your questions now, right here.  Read full article »

Innovations: Your neighborhood garbage truck is a gas-guzzler. Here’s why.
New cars sold in the United States have become more fuel efficient but your neighborhood garbage truck is still an embarrassment. They generally get between 2 and 3 mpg.Of course, it’s not all their fault. A residential garbage truck is sentenced to a life of stop-and-go driving as it picks up hundreds of trash cans a day. Fully loaded the trucks can weigh more than 60,000 pounds.  Read full article »

DealBook P.M. Edition on January 23, 2015: Top Story: Apollo Seeks to Raise Fund to Buy Energy Sector Debt.

An oil drilling pump site in North Dakota.
Apollo Seeks to Raise Fund to Buy Energy Sector DebtApollo Global Management is sprinting to raise a new fund to buy the debt of troubled energy companies, as the private equity giant seeks to capitalize on the recent collapse in oil prices. The new vehicle, known as Energy Credit Opportunity Fund, is aiming to raise the capital on an unusually compressed timeline, according to a confidential email obtained by DealBook. Apollo is hoping to hold an initial closing for the fund in early March and then finish raising the capital by early April.
For the latest updates, go to »
Online Storage Company Box Has Strong Debut in First Day of Trading Shares of Box, the online file storage company, closed 66 percent higher than its I.P.O. price, surpassing the $2.4 billion valuation that it fetched in its most recent private financing round. The stock's strong first-day performance may ease some concerns among investors that highflying Silicon Valley start-ups were looking overvalued.
Travelocity has used the Roaming Gnome in its ad campaigns.
Expedia Buys Travelocity for $280 Million in Cash The acquisition will furnish Expedia - which already owns, Hotwire and - another well-known name in the travel industry.
Gary Cohn, Goldman's president and chief operating officer, said in an interview that his firm was positioned to advise on deals this year if the oil industry consolidates.
Goldman Sachs Executive Says Falling Oil Prices Will Help Consumers, and Firm's Business Goldman Sachs has calculated that falling oil prices will push well over a trillion dollars into other industries around the world, said Gary Cohn, the investment bank's president and chief operating officer.
BBVA Agrees to Sell Stake in China Citic Bank for $1.7 BillionFollowing the deal, BBVA will continue to hold a 4.7 percent stake in the Chinese bank.
Magnus Peterson, the founder of Weavering Capital, a London hedge fund.
London Hedge Fund Founder Sentenced to 13 Years in Prison Magnus Peterson, the founding director of Weavering Capital, was convicted of eight counts, including fraud, forgery, false accounting and fraudulent trading.
Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England, participated on a panel with Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund.
At the Fulcrum of Preventing Another Financial CrisisMark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England, says the measures regulators have taken to strengthen the banking system will protect the global economy, but some skeptics remain.
Mark Carney is the governor of the Bank of England.
Bank of England Governor Backs E.C.B. Strategy Mark Carney said he supported the European Central Bank's decision to buy bonds to stimulate the European economy. At home, he faces a different situation.
Paul Kagame, the president of Rwanda, said that the increased dialogue about climate change was a victory in itself.
Leaders in Davos Urge Quick Action to Alter the Effects of Climate Change Business and political leaders called on governments to set clear goals so companies are prompted to act before the problems of climate change become irreversible.
E.C.B.'s Bazooka Is a Water Pistol for Emerging Markets Fading growth and falling prices will overwhelm the stimulus from central banks, says Andy Mukherjee of Reuters Breakingviews.
Lloyd Blankfein, the chief executive of Goldman Sachs.
Hint for Investors in Rise in Cash for Wall St. Chiefs' Pay With stock gains at the big banks slowing, cash bonuses may seem relatively more appealing to bank bosses. Investors should keep that in mind, Antony Currie of Reuters Breakingviews writes.
Why a Supreme Court Housing Case Could Have a Broad ImpactA ruling may greatly reduce liability for unfair mortgage financing practices nationwide and limit the ability for the government to combat predatory lending, contends Jennifer Taub, a professor at Vermont Law School.
A demonstration for a higher minimum wage in Illinois last fall.
Privilege Is a Privilege, and a Responsibility Tony Schwartz, in the Life@Work column, asks the wealthiest: Are you comfortable having more than you will ever spend, while those around you barely earn what they need to survive?
For the latest updates, go to »