“The IMF is expanding the list of currencies separatelyidentified in the Composition of Foreign Exchange Reservesreporting (COFER) template,” said an IMF spokeswoman as citedby The Wall Street Journal. “The implementation of the revisedCOFER Report Form, with separate identification of the Australiandollar and Canadian dollar, is scheduled for the first half of2013.”The IMF holds report figures of the global reserve holdings in adatabase known as the COFER mainly in just five currencies, deemedby many investors to be among the world’s safest: US dollars,euros, British pounds, Japanese yen and Swissfrancs. Recent economic problems associated with the euro and the dollarset a continuing trend for the diversification of the reservecurrencies as a way out from the volatility, Yaroslav Lissovolik,chief economist at Deutsche Bank in Moscow told RT.“It is definitely a trend and this trend will continue. Thereis a global demand for more reserve currencies. The world economywants to diversify the set of reserve currencies as a way from thevolatility and the problems associated with the current reservecurrencies, because both US and Europe are plagued by economicproblems. This is natural and clear that the global economy shoulduse more foundations, more columns on which to stand and build astronger foundation of a more complex globaleconomy,” said Lissovolik.The best chance to join the Canadian and Australian dollar thisyear has the New Zealand dollar which looks in the longterm more reliable, Anna Bodrova currency analyst from Investcafetold RT. If the IMF adds it to the list of reserve currencies, theinternational system calculations will be more transparent andthere will be an opportunity to make more accurate long-termforecasts, she said.Australia and Canada both have resource based economies thathave been benefiting from the growing demand for raw materials inAsia and other regions, which have given both countries the opportunity to emerge from the global financial crisis in muchbetter shape than either the US or Europe, according to The WallStreet Journal.Russia is with Australia and Canada in the same group of theresource focused economies. But Russian ruble is not as readyas it seems to become a reserve currency, as it is subject toexternal influence, Bodrova told RT. For the situation to beclearer, the Russian Central Bank needs to decide whether it shouldlet the ruble float freely or continue to regulate it. If theCentral Bank continues to regulate it, ruble’s chances to become areserve currency will increase.”So far I see no basis to include the Russian ruble tothe list of reserve currencies in the next two years”, Bodrovasaid.There are some differences that may pertain to issues concerningmonetary policy, exchange rate flexibility and the degree of thedependency of the economy on oil and oil prices that limit Russia’sprogress, according to Lissovolik.If Russia strengthens the ruble’s role in the Commonwealth ofIndependent States (CIS) region and increases the share of tradeand investment in rubles globally, then the Russian currency willbecome a global reserve currency, he says.“If we see the ruble used more intensively in the Russiantrade, then this is something that may eventually lead to the rubletaking the role of one of the global reserve currencies. Thepotential for that is very much there,” Lissovolik says adding“Eventually it is a question of time the ruble becomes a globalreserve currency”.Concerning the Chinese yuan, it is unlikely to becomea reserve currency in the near future, as China has been aclosed country for a long time, and only in the last year anda half the country began to open up, to let in foreigninvestors and show willingness to reform its system, Bodrova toldRT.“The yuan is not yet being traded by its marketvalue,” she said. …
If the word “philanthropy” conjures up solely images of stodgy foundations and out-of-touch donors, it may be time to clear your cache.
At the top of The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s list of major donors in 2012, three of the top givers hail from the world of tech, and three couples are under 40.
“We’ve just never seen this in philanthropy,” Chronicle editor Stacy Palmer, told Forbes. “Usually we have pictures of old white men on the top of the list.”
Ever feel like an outnumbered
ideological minority? And/or that your ideas are growing strong
enough that the establishment is now impelled to strike you down?
Either way, today’s New York Times op-ed page is for you.Four op-eds, four assaults on the libertarian senses. Starting
with Mark Binelli–”Can
a libertarian island paradise rescue a blighted city? No”:
Belle Isle was recently at the center of a different moneymaking
scheme. A group of wealthy libertarians suggested that private
investors buy the island from the city [of Detroit] for the nice,
round, Dr. Evil-ish sum of $1 billion and transform it into an
independent, self-governing territory. With the price for
citizenship set at $300,000, the Commonwealth of Belle
Isle would exist as a sort of free-market paradise; within
30 years, the group’s Web site predicted, the island would be known
as the “‘Midwest Tiger,’ rivaling Singapore as an economic
miracle.” One can order from that Web site a novella about this
future Belle Isle, which describes the commonwealth’s low taxes,
minimal government, even its own currency (called — seriously —
The book — a preview of its opening chapter has the hero landing
on the rooftop helipad of the commonwealth’s 57-story Four Seasons
hotel — makes the entire scheme very easy to mock as Objectivist
fan fiction. But it’s not entirely a joke: private foundations and
deep-pocketed members of the local business elite exercise an
outsize influence in a city as broke as Detroit, providing
financing for everything from a much-needed light-rail line to the
Future City plan, which would entirely remap the city.
is not the time for spending cuts”:
Given the state we’re in, it would be irresponsible and
destructive not to kick that can down the road.
Start with a basic point: Slashing government spending destroys
jobs and causes the economy to shrink.
This really isn’t a debatable proposition at this point.
we don’t need more foreign high-tech workers”:
Bringing over more — there are already 500,000 workers on H-1B
visas — would obviously darken job prospects for America’s
struggling young scientists and engineers. But it would also hurt
our efforts to produce more: if the message to American students
is, “Don’t bother working hard for a high-tech degree, because we
can import someone to do the job for less,” we could do significant
long-term damage to the high-tech educational system we value so
And David Brooks–”Machiavelli
in an age of terror”:
Acting brutally abroad saves lives at home.
For a different view on urban development, government
spending, immigration, and overseas brutality,
I recommend a very nice magazine, for the low low price of less than $15 per year. …
According to reports, three separate drone attacks in Pakistan’s South Waziristan mountains killed at least 17 people Tuesday. The AP reported that eight suspected militants were among the dead in a separate strike in North Waziristan today.The attacks are the latest in a string of strikes since the New Year began. The holiday period also saw a number of drone attacks launched against militants in Yemen after a comparatively quiet period.Meanwhile, criticism of the U.S.’s drone wars remains fierce at home and abroad. A new study by one of President Obama’s former security advisers deemed the drone program counter-productive “encouraging a new arms race that will empower current and future rivals and lay the foundations for an international system that is increasingly violent,” the Guardian noted Tuesday.Michael Boyle, who was on Obama’s counter-terrorism group in the run-up to his election in 2008, said the US administration’s growing reliance on drone technology was having “adverse strategic effects that have not been properly weighed against the tactical gains associated with killing terrorists”.Continue Reading… …
(Nikhil Kumar) More than a week on from the Newtown massacre, America remains shaken – and still in the dark about Adam Lanza, the 20-year-old gunman who killed 26 people, including 20 defenceless first graders at Sandy Hook Elementary, with a military-style rifle. Testimony from those acquainted with the killer has painted a picture of [...]
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NEW ORLEANS — The chaos wrought by Superstorm Sandy, the homes tossed from foundations and landmarks buried beneath seawater, delivered a gut-wrenching dose of deja vu for survivors of Hurricane Katrina like Joe and Gloria Robert.Their own home flooded beneath 7 feet of salty water when the levees broke after Katrina struck the Gulf Coast in August 2005, and they know all too well what their countrymen to the north will face: years of debris removal, cleanup, rebuilding, haggling with insurance companies, paying mortgages on homes left unlivable. And they knew they had to help.Read More…
More on Hurricane Katrina
Mitt Romney is not big on specifics. He’s got a fairy-tale five-point plan, tax math that doesn’t add up, and who can tell where he stands on foreign policy these days. So when Mitt is willing to get specific … we should all be paying attention.Romney has proposed trillions in new tax cuts, and so far has only proposed one concrete way to offset that budget-busting cost: Capping itemized tax deductions at $17,000, $25,000 or $50,000 (he’s floated several different numbers).Let’s ignore, for the moment, that this cap could still hit middle-class families. Let’s skip over the fact that the richest folks will still make out like bandits thanks to the massive rate cuts that Romney proposes. Let’s even pretend that capping deductions would come close to paying for those tax cuts. It’s still an incredibly dangerous proposal.Continue Reading… …