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Feb 9, 2015

The Washington Post Evening Edition on February 9, 2015: Obama says he will consider arming Ukraine if diplomacy fails

The Washington Post
Evening Edition
The most important stories of the day  •  Mon., Feb. 9, 2015

Alabama judge stakes out defiant stance against same-sex marriages
MOBILE, Ala. — Amid legal showdowns and high-level defiance, Alabama was buffeted by feuds over same-sex marriage Monday after courts cleared the way but some judges resisted issuing licenses to gay and lesbian couples.  Read full article »

Was Brian Williams terrorized by gangs at the Ritz-Carlton during Katrina?
There’s a story Brian Williams likes to tell. He has told it in a TV interview. He has told it to at least two book authors. But even though it had all the makings of a great yarn — danger, guns, resolve — Williams never reported it to his viewers.  Read full article »
Obama says he will consider arming Ukraine if diplomacy fails
President Obama said Monday that he is considering providing Ukraine with lethal weapons to defend the country against Russian aggression if diplomatic options fail.Speaking at a news conference, Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the United States and Europe remain united in trying to achieve a diplomatic resolution to the crisis and on continuing sanctions against Russia.   Read full article »
Top nonprofit contractor for U.S. in war zones billed for Redskins tickets, alcohol
Two weeks after being suspended from government work, the leading development nonprofit for the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan has purged numerous long-time senior executives amid a widening investigation of allegations of “serious” financial misconduct.  Read full article »
The complicated history of a D.C. block smeared by Rep. Schock’s former adviser
On this balmy Sunday afternoon, couples walked their dogs, a man assisted an elderly woman carrying her groceries to her apartment, and joggers briskly made their way along the sidewalk of the 1400 block of W Street NW — a narrow one-way street filled with colorful rowhouses and small apartment buildings.  Read full article »
The Washington Post. The all-new app is now on the Fire tablet.
Wizards beer-soaked waitress describes her ‘SportsCenter’ moment
Mason Plumlee’s collision with Delia Barr was designed for six-second video clips. Six seconds lets you see Plumlee’s approach, see him slam into Barr on the Wizards sidelines, see a bunch of domestic lite beer and other alcoholic beverages cascade onto the floor, a waterfall of wasted buzz. You’ve probably already seen those six seconds, and you’ll probably see them again.  Read full article »
Kanye wasn’t joking, tells E! that ‘Beck needs to respect artistry and he should have given his award to Beyoncé’
During a very gloomy Grammy Awards, the Internet perked up when Kanye West appeared to pull a Kanye West and stormed the stage in protest of Beyoncé not winning one of the biggest prizes of the night — album of the year — which went to Beck for “Morning Phase.”  Read full article »

Some alums object when ‘Princeton Mom’ says some ‘date rape’ is just a bad hookup, a ‘learning experience’
Like lots of people, Julie List had seen what a fellow Princeton alumna, Susan Patton, had to say in her book about the importance of finding a man at college. (Manicures and weight loss recommended). List held her tongue.  Read full article »

U.S. Department of the Treasury Press Release: Lew and Osborne Op-Ed: Essential Elements to a G-20 Growth Plan.

U.S. Department of the Treasury Logo

WASHINGTON – In an op-ed to be published in the February 9, 2015 edition of The Wall Street Journal Europe, U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew and U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne discuss the importance of supporting strong, sustainable and balanced global growth.

Read the piece online.

Essential Elements to a G-20 Growth Plan
By Jacob J. Lew and George Osborne
Reform, including free trade, should join fiscal and monetary measures on the agenda.
Over the past few years, our two governments have worked to fuel economic growth, create jobs and improve living standards. Our economies are now growing solidly.
However, finance ministers and central-bank governors from the G-20 nations gather on Monday in Istanbul against a backdrop of challenges. Global growth is forecast to slow. Deflationary risks are evident in some regions. There is a shortfall in demand. And we face rising geopolitical risks from Ukraine and the Middle East that require coordinated action.
Our message at the G-20 is this: Governments must use the full set of tools they have at their disposal to support their economies and realize the collective G-20 objective of strong, sustainable and balanced global growth.
Any comprehensive plan must include three crucial ingredients.
First, fiscal policies must maintain a responsible fiscal path while ensuring sufficient resources for education and infrastructure investment for the future. In the U.K. and U.S., fiscal deficits have fallen by half as a share of gross domestic product in the context of stronger economic growth, spending reductions and revenue increases. Precise requirements will differ by country, but all countries need credible plans that can be flexibly implemented.
Crucially, plans must be designed to protect the most growth-enhancing investments. The burden of reducing deficits must be shared fairly. In the U.K. and the U.S., action was taken to ensure that those with the broadest shoulders bear the greatest burden. In addition to prior actions in the U.S., additional measures to bolster the middle class and lower our deficits were contained in President Obama’s budget proposals last week. At an international level, the G-20 must continue eliminating incentives for tax avoidance and cracking down on tax evasion, including through coordination and increased transparency.
Second, central banks are playing a critical role in supporting accommodative credit conditions that encourage business and household spending and counter deflationary pressures. Forceful monetary-policy actions in the U.S. and U.K. were essential in helping our economies recover after the global financial crisis. But central banks cannot do the job alone.
The third ingredient for a comprehensive economic plan must be the implementation of pro-growth structural economic reforms to boost productivity and raise living standards. Domestically that must include better infrastructure, support for small businesses, regulatory reforms that safeguard financial stability and improved education for all. It must also include strong efforts to address impediments that make certain economies structurally less competitive, including the variety of rigidities that constrain growth in several European countries.
We share a common interest with our European partners in seeing Greece sustain and build upon its hard-fought progress on reforms. In close consultation with its European and international partners, it is important that Greece implement a credible and comprehensive approach to reform, recovery and economic growth. At the European level, there needs to be renewed momentum to complete the single market for services and capital. The entire Continent must do more to support growth and jobs, recognizing that countries have varying degrees of fiscal space.
All countries must also honor their G-7, G-20 and International Monetary Fund exchange-rate commitments and obligations. Internationally, we must all strive for further progress on trade agreements that benefit our workers and reflect our values. We are working to conclude a comprehensive EU-U.S. trade deal that would significantly expand trade between our nations and support new opportunities for millions of workers in both Europe and the U.S.
A comprehensive approach utilizing all three ingredients would help dispel uncertainty and inspire the confidence needed for investment and growth.
Finally, the best laid plans can be undone by geopolitical shocks, so we need to contain risks, especially in Ukraine where the situation is of increasing concern. In the end, this crisis needs a political solution. The EU and the U.S. have worked closely together to impose costs on Russia for its actions in Ukraine and must be prepared to do more if the situation deteriorates, while leaving open a diplomatic off-ramp if Russia chooses to change course. At the same time, we need to ensure sufficient financial support for Ukraine, including increased support from the U.S., Europe and international institutions as Ukraine undertakes essential economic reforms.
In an uncertain world there is once again an urgent need for international coordination to confront problems, contain risks and deliver a comprehensive plan for strong, sustainable and balanced growth.

Mr. Lew is the U.S. treasury secretary. Mr. Osborne is the U.K. chancellor of the exchequer.

DealBook P.M. Edition - February 9, 2015: Top Story: White Collar Watch: The S.E.C.'s Hazy Approach to Crime and Punishment The S.E.C..

White Collar Watch: The S.E.C.'s Hazy Approach to Crime and Punishment The S.E.C., which advocates full disclosure for the companies it regulates, has a little trouble with its own transparency, Peter J. Henning writes.

HSBC Under Renewed Scrutiny Over Swiss Tax Avoidance Claims A report released by a journalists' consortium said employees had reassured clients the bank would not disclose details of their accounts to tax authorities in their home countries.
Another View: Investors Should Know Pay Gap Between C.E.O.s and Workers Companies should disclose their chief-executive-to-worker pay ratio, and investors should pay close attention to it before deciding where to put their money, Richard Trumka, the president of the A.F.L.-C.I.O., writes in an Another View column.
John Whitehead, a former co-chairman of Goldman Sachs, in 2008.
Reuters Breakingviews: Whitehead's Storied Career Beyond Goldman Sachs Is Hard to Reproduce It will take years to repair banks' credibility enough to produce someone who can move as easily from banking to public service, Antony Currie and Rob Cox of Reuters Breakingviews write.
Deloitte Chooses Female Chief Executive The choice of Cathy Engelbert makes Deloitte the first of the big four accounting and consulting firms in the United States to be headed by a woman.
Carl Icahn, the billionaire activist investor.
Icahn to Get Boards Seats in Settlement With Manufacturer Manitowoc Manitowoc agreed not only to give the activist investor board seats, but also to adopt corporate governance rules of its forthcoming spinoff with so-called shareholder friendly provisions.
Chinese Inflation Numbers on Tuesday China releases its consumer price index and producer price index for January on Tuesday morning in Beijing. Falling prices for oil and other commodities are expected to result in very low inflation at the consumer level, around 1 percent, and continued deflation at the producer level, with prices falling more than 3 percent from a year earlier.

But other monthly statistics normally issued in the second week of each month will not be coming out at all, including industrial production, retail sales, overall fixed asset investment and real estate investment.

The Lunar New Year holiday falls each year between late January and the middle of February - it is in the third week of February this year - and has a big effect on the economy because factories close for at least a week and often longer. So year-on-year comparisons of output in January or February are almost meaningless, and China waits until early March to release aggregate figures for January and February for numerous economic indicators.
Swiss Bank Results on Tuesday and Thursday The Swiss bank UBS will report its fourth-quarter results on Tuesday and Credit Suisse will report its results on Thursday. The big question on the minds of investors this week will be the potential impact on the banks' bottom lines of the rise of the Swiss franc to the euro. Last month, Switzerland abandoned measures to hold down the value of the franc to the euro as concerns about Europe's economy pushed the euro downward.

UBS and Credit Suisse have both said that they did not sustain trading losses as a result of the jump in the franc after the Swiss National Bank's move in January, but the rise in the franc could potentially lower their profits. Both banks hold capital in a variety of currencies, like the dollar, but report results in francs.

In a research report last month, Barclays estimated that the move in the franc could reduce UBS's results by as much as 14 percent and Credit Suisse's results by as much as 15 percent.
Elis I.P.O. on Wednesday Elis, the French provider of rental uniforms, table and bed linens and carpets to businesses, is expected to begin trading on Euronext in Paris on Wednesday after pricing its initial public offering. The offering comes as European I.P.O.s are on pace for their best start since the financial crisis. Elis intends to sell 670 million euros, or about $763 million, in new shares in the I.P.O., while an entity controlled by the French buyout company Eurazeo and a group of Elis employees and managers plans to sell about €50 million of their holdings in the company.

Eurazeo acquired Elis from the French private equity firm PAI Partners in October 2007 in a deal that valued the company at about €2.28 billion. Eurazeo currently holds an 83 percent stake in Elis. Elis expects to price its I.P.O. at €13 to €16.50 a share.
Tesla's Numbers on Wednesday The electric carmaker Tesla Motors will report its fourth-quarter earnings on Wednesday evening, and investors will be watching to see whether the company was able to achieve its goal of delivering 33,000 cars last year. Unlike other automakers, Tesla does not report monthly sales figures, only quarterly deliveries, and it needs around 11,000 more vehicles to make its target.

Tesla's stock is still up year-over-year, but it has been in a slide since September as the market worried about the company's troubles in China and the prospect that Tesla might not be profitable until the end of the decade.
European Leaders to Meet on Thursday Can Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany avoid a showdown over austerity with Greece's newly elected prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, at a meeting of European Union leaders on Thursday? Mr. Tsipras wants far less onerous terms for an international bailout of his country. Ms. Merkel, backed by leaders from other European creditor nations, wants the Greeks to stick to previously agreed-upon reforms and cuts.

Mr. Tsipras looks set to win a vote of confidence in the Greek Parliament by a comfortable margin early in the week.

But by failing to strike a compromise with Europe, Mr. Tsipras could lead his country into a default and a chaotic exit from the euro, which would pose risks to the wider European economy. Efforts to defuse the tensions go into high gear on Wednesday evening, when the Greek finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, joins his 18 eurozone counterparts for emergency talks ahead of the leaders' meeting.
January Retail Sales on Thursday On Thursday, the Commerce Department will report on retail sales in January. In December, retail sales fell as gas stations took in less money because of plunging energy prices, and because some holiday shopping had shifted to November. Economists expect the headline number to decline again for January, with gas prices continuing to drop and auto sales softer. Excluding those two often-volatile categories, economists expect retail sales to have increased by 0.4 percent in January, as consumers put the money they were saving on fuel to work elsewhere. In addition, frantic preparation for the blizzard that largely failed to materialize on the East Coast may have given retail activity a tiny boost last month.
Oil and Steel Reports on Thursday and Friday The fallout from the deep slump in oil prices will continue to be in evidence this week when Total, the French giant, reports quarterly and annual results on Thursday. Patrick Pouyanné, who became chief executive last year after the death of Christophe de Margerie in a Moscow plane crash, is expected to present his cost-cutting plans at a news conference in London.

On Friday, results from ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steel maker, will show whether economic jitters in Europe are beginning to put the brakes on what had already been a painfully slow recovery for the industry. ThyssenKrupp, Europe's second-largest steel maker, will report on the same day.

WSJ | Biggest Gainers Closing on February 9, 2015.

Biggest Gainers Closing
Biggest Gainers
4:47 pm ET 02/09/2015
Swift Energy (SFY)3,952,625$3.020.3914.83
Paragon Offshore (PGN)3,107,7433.350.3913.18
Civeo (CVEO)5,637,4353.710.3911.75
Frontline (FRO)3,942,7692.900.3011.54
Rio Alto Mining (RIOM)2,583,0612.930.2910.98
Pioneer Energy Services (PES)1,993,2305.660.5610.98
Independence Contract Drilling (ICD)45,7936.100.6010.91
Parker Drilling (PKD)1,103,0353.670.3610.88
Ormat Technologies (ORA)498,05130.322.8910.54
Transocean (RIG)20,691,12920.441.9310.43
Cloud Peak Energy (CLD)2,094,9777.780.7110.04
Crane (CR)5,030,31268.456.209.96
Seventy Seven Energy (SSE)1,462,0955.880.488.89
CARBO Ceramics (CRR)2,432,74839.303.118.59
Danaos (DAC)63,1086.060.478.41
Goodrich Petroleum (GDP)6,319,9513.310.258.17
Box Cl A (BOX)3,221,10019.601.488.17
SeaDrill (SDRL)20,834,82514.341.088.14
PetroQuest Energy (PQ)1,140,8593.330.258.12
Atwood Oceanics (ATW)4,201,29234.752.577.99
Bridgepoint Education (BPI)270,80911.190.807.70
Star Gas Partners (SGU)238,1777.050.497.47
Herbalife (HLF)1,647,99735.152.427.39
Landauer (LDR)130,66435.152.407.33
Global Ship Lease Cl A (GSL)223,6995.310.367.27
PostRock Energy (PSTR)366,101$5.851.8044.44
Westport Innovations (WPRT)4,122,6545.980.9619.12
Mattersight (MATR)245,7897.151.1018.18
General Finance (GFN)100,4069.281.3316.73
Aemetis (AMTX)78,4464.700.6716.63
Coherus BioSciences (CHRS)517,82032.363.7012.91
Multi-Fineline Electronix (MFLX)250,13915.071.339.68
Patriot Transportation Holding (PATI)10,75726.342.299.52
China BAK Battery (CBAK)151,6472.550.218.97
Avalanche Biotechnologies (AAVL)703,14136.242.978.93
Covisint (COVS)271,2662.460.208.85
NewLink Genetics (NLNK)579,12935.322.838.71
Conn's (CONN)5,897,96624.391.908.45
Audience (ADNC)126,2384.340.348.44
Clean Energy Fuels (CLNE)2,243,8585.080.398.32
Legacy Reserves (LGCY)2,098,96114.651.118.20
Chart Industries (GTLS)437,31032.822.387.82
Achillion Pharmaceuticals (ACHN)23,666,17611.660.847.76
MannKind (MNKD)12,408,0557.510.547.75
Golden Enterprises (GLDC)14,3554.190.307.71
Curis (CRIS)2,171,7032.390.177.66
ANI Pharmaceuticals (ANIP)491,04059.283.977.18
Hasbro (HAS)4,908,88359.663.927.03
Verastem (VSTM)534,7537.600.496.89
Egalet (EGLT)50,59810.250.666.88
Direxion Daily Junior Gold Miners Index Bull 3X Shares (JNUG)1,943,643$31.971.966.53
Direxion Daily Gold Miners Bull 3x Shares (NUGT)10,269,42916.920.815.03
VelocityShares 3x Long Crude ETN (UWTI)42,326,9803.880.184.86
PowerShares DB Commodity Double Long ETN (DYY)6,6634.000.194.86
Direxion Daily Latin America Bull 3X Shares (LBJ)49,95811.040.413.86
Direxion Daily Brazil Bull 3X Shares (BRZU)307,4107.330.253.53
ProSharesUltraSilver (AGQ)191,14344.121.423.33
VelocityShares 3x Long Natural Gas ETN linked to the S&P GSCI Natural Gas Index Excess Return (UGAZ)27,709,8042.490.083.32
ProShares Ultra Bloomberg Crude Oil (UCO)15,910,9859.360.283.08
iPath Bloomberg Cocoa Subindex Total Return ETN (NIB)5,42337.061.062.94
Direxion Daily Semiconductor Bear 3X Shares (SOXS)237,50814.350.412.94
Credit Suisse S&P MLP Index ETN (MLPO)50,20024.280.692.91
ProShares Ultra Bloomberg Natural Gas (BOIL)264,42812.010.312.65
SPDR S&P Oil&Gas Equipment&Services ETF (XES)343,62128.040.722.64
Global X Gold Explorers ETF (GLDX)16,47411.530.302.63
ProShares UltraPro Short Russell2000 (SRTY)1,018,75930.670.742.47
PowerShares DB Silver Fund (DBS)2,95527.600.652.43
Direxion Daily Small Cap Bear 3x Shares (TZA)13,355,86511.900.282.41
PowerShares DB Crude Oil Short ETN (SZO)5,40061.351.402.34
E-TRACS UBS Bloomberg CMCI Silver ETN (USV)3,54422.820.522.33
Market Vectors Gulf Shares ETF (MES)5,02127.680.632.33
EGShares Brazil Infrastructure ETF (BRXX)39,6049.770.222.30
Market Vectors Junior Gold Minets ETF (GDXJ)9,799,99727.250.612.29
AB Svensk Exportkredit ELEMENTS linked to MLCX Grain Index Total Return (GRU)3,2474.950.112.27
Deutsche X-trackers In Target Date ETF (TDX)3,08328.190.592.13
PostRock Energy (PSTR)366,101$5.851.8044.44
Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide (QTWW)3,661,6113.801.0136.20
Westport Innovations (WPRT)4,122,6545.980.9619.12
Mattersight (MATR)245,7897.151.1018.18
General Finance (GFN)100,4069.281.3316.73
Aemetis (AMTX)78,4464.700.6716.63
EPIRUS Biopharmaceuticals (EPRS)1,361,5315.590.7415.26
Swift Energy (SFY)3,952,6253.020.3914.83
Paragon Offshore (PGN)3,107,7433.350.3913.18
Coherus BioSciences (CHRS)517,82032.363.7012.91
Recon Technology (RCON)160,0702.920.3312.74
Civeo (CVEO)5,637,4353.710.3911.75
Frontline (FRO)3,942,7692.900.3011.54
Rio Alto Mining (RIOM)2,583,0612.930.2910.98
Pioneer Energy Services (PES)1,993,2305.660.5610.98
Independence Contract Drilling (ICD)45,7936.100.6010.91
Parker Drilling (PKD)1,103,0353.670.3610.88
Cellular Biomedicine Group (CBMG)73,67523.402.2910.85
Ormat Technologies (ORA)498,05130.322.8910.54
Hennessy Advisors (HNNA)66,76523.482.2310.49
Transocean (RIG)20,690,86820.441.9310.43
Cloud Peak Energy (CLD)2,094,9777.780.7110.04
Crane (CR)5,030,31268.456.209.96
Multi-Fineline Electronix (MFLX)250,13915.071.339.68
Patriot Transportation Holding (PATI)10,75726.342.299.52
See All Gainers
Includes common, closed end funds, ETFs, ETNs and REITS with prior day close of $2 a share or higher, with volume of at least 2,000.
x - stock is trading ex-dividend
Source: WSJ Market Data Group