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Pressure builds up among the elite. Vice President Joe Biden warned President Barack Obama

Pressure builds up among the elite. Vice President Joe Biden warned President Barack Obama that the underlying rationale for the 2009 troop surge in Afghanistan was profoundly flawed, according to a leaked memo that is set to be published this week in a new book about the war in Afghanistan.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/biden-obama-troop-surge-afghanistan-memo-131420413.html;_ylt=AsIVtk6vcEpPyICVS.g5XVSs0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTNtZGZhZ2RuBG1pdANKdW1ib3Ryb24gRlAEcGtnA2MzMzlkYTk2LTllMTMtM2U4OS1iZjY4LTE2ODRjMjZhMzRhOARwb3MDMgRzZWMDanVtYm90cm9uBHZlcgM1M2YyZjNmMS1iZWQ4LTExZTEtYmRmZi00ZDM3MjE3ODU0NmY-;_ylg=X3oDMTFpNzk0NjhtBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDBHBzdGNhdANob21lBHB0A3NlY3Rpb25z;_ylv=3

Greece’s designated finance minister resigns

Greece’s designated finance minister resigns, he justs walks in, sees greece balance sheet, and resigns, splat! How funny is that! Can greece agree to austerity without greece finance minister who fell ill earlier. Don”t know now when they will have that special euro meeting again.

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece’s designated finance minister resigned Monday after being rushed to the hospital on Friday, the prime minister’s office said.

Vassilis Rapanos, chairman of the National Bank of Greece, had been named finance minister last week in the country’s new three-party coalition government. But he was taken ill before he could be sworn in Friday and has been in hospital ever since.

Rapanos has sent a letter of resignation to Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and that was accepted.
The startling development came as Germany tamped down expectations that this week’s European Union summit would emerge with any significant action on Greece as the debt-strapped nation’s two key politicians struggled with health problems.

Samaras himself was released from hospital Monday after undergoing eye surgery to repair a detached retina over the weekend, but will have to stay home for several days and won’t be able to travel to Brussels for the EU summit. He was still planning to speak by telephone later Monday with President Barack Obama.

The EU summit this Thursday and Friday comes just a week after Greece’s new coalition government was formed following months of political turmoil and two inconclusive elections. It was to have been a key test of Athens’ hopes of renegotiating some of the austerity measures it has agreed to in return for billions of euros in rescue loans from the International Monetary Fund and other European Union nations that use the joint euro currency.

It was to have been preceded by a visit to Athens starting Monday of Greece’s debt inspectors, known as the Troika — representatives from the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF. But that visit was postponed until Samaras and Rapanos can recover.
Rapanos, meanwhile, remained in the hospital after being admitted Friday complaining of severe abdominal pain, dizziness and nausea. The hospital said he would be released on Tuesday but did not elaborate.

Without the troika report on Greece’s progress in economic reforms required by its international bailout, Germany said it would be premature to expect any new decisions this week. Samaras has been pressing Greece’s creditors to revise the bailout deal, which is despised by many ordinary Greeks.

“The troika needs to go to Athens, they need to assess the status of the program, then they need to brief the eurozone and IMF leadership,” said Steffen Seibert, the spokesman for German Chancellor Angela Merkel. “On the basis of this assessment, one can talk about necessary updating of the program — that is the road map that everyone in Europe is following and that’s why we don’t expect any sort of a resolution on Greece at the EU council.”

With fears that Greece’s problems are not getting resolved soon, the Athens Stock Exchange general price index closed 6.84 percent down Monday.

Greece will still be present at the EU summit, sending a delegation with outgoing Finance Minister Giorgos Zanias, one of the key negotiators in Greece’s bailout agreement. As Rapanos fell ill before he could be sworn in, Zanias still holds the title.

And the delegation will be led by the country’s president, 83-year-old Karolos Papoulias, the government announced Monday. While the presidency in Greece is a largely ceremonial post, his presence would adhere to EU regulations about summits.

It was unclear when the postponed troika visit would take place.

“First, our concern is for the health of the prime minister and finance minister,” European Commission spokesman Amadeu Altafaj Tardio said in Brussels, adding that debt inspectors would head to Greece “as soon as possible.”

Samaras’ government, comprised of his New Democracy conservatives, their long-time socialist rivals PASOK and the small Democratic Left party, has issued a policy statement outlining changes it would like to make to the terms of its international bailout. Those include repealing certain tax hikes, freezing public sector layoffs and extending by two years the mid-2014 deadline for tough austerity measures.

Whether Greece can amend the terms of its loan agreement will depend on how the proposals are viewed by its international creditors. Germany, the largest single contributor to eurozone bailouts, has repeatedly said Athens must stick to its austerity pledges.

“One thing is clear,” German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said from Luxembourg. “We cannot allow everything to be negotiated again. We can also not allow discounts to be granted. What has been decided upon stands. That the (Greek) election campaigns have cost time is obvious. That’s the situation and we have to deal with it. But the fact remains that the agreements must be implemented.”

Seibert also stressed that Greece must stick to its commitments.

“A program has been agreed upon, a program goes for every government, no matter if it’s a new government, and the program is the best way to see Greece return to economic health,” he said.
In Brussels, Altafaj Tardio also stressed that “Greece has to face its financial obligations,” adding that before any further funds can be disbursed “there has to be a thorough analysis.”

“It’s no secret that there have been delays in several areas of implementation,” he added.
The latest figures released by the finance ministry Monday showed that Greece’s budget deficit for the first five months of the year was better than expected, standing at €10.87 billion ($13.63 billion) instead of the target of €12.89 billion ($16.17 billion) on a modified cash basis.

Revenue, however, was below target with the state budget net revenue standing at €19.67 billion ($24.56 billion), €926 million ($1.15 billion) short of the targeted €20.6 billion ($25.73 billion), due in part to lower domestic consumer demand and lower tax revenues.
The ministry said “this revenue shortfall was more than compensated for by the savings in State Budget expenditures for the first five months of 2012.”
____
David Rising in Berlin and Toby Sterling in Brussels contributed.

Stocks Drop as Commodities Enter Bear Market on Economy

U.S. stocks tumbled, driving the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index to the second-biggest loss of the year, and commodities entered a bear market while Treasuries and the dollar rallied as reports on global manufacturing fueled concern the economy is slowing.

The S&P 500 sank 2.2 percent. The S&P GSCI commodities gauge slid to the lowest level since 2010 and is down 22 percent from a February peak. Oil fell below $80 a barrel for the first time in eight months. Ten-year Treasury yields lost four basis points to 1.62 percent. The dollar gained versus all major peers. S&P 500 futures rose 0.3 percent at 6:21 p.m. New York time after bank credit downgrades announced by Moody’s Investors Service matched expectations.

More:http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-06-21/asian-stocks-gain-after-fed-extends-stimulus-as-oil-euro-drop.html?cmpid=yhoo

Trading Tip: Watch the futures and not the option price.

If you have a position on an option, always watch the underlying instrument for technical trading directions, the underlying drives the derivative, whose pricing determined mostly by its own supply and demand. Therefore, dont watch the options price when trading, instead focus on the underlyiing.

if u see the underlying moving, breaking ur levels, then decide on the options price you will trade at, the decision making process of the trade, should be based on the futures direction, and not on the option price.

India Nifty M12 – Last 5128.70 {Short)

Day so far. Opens gap down. Then Range trading 5133-5145, keeping 5149 intack, dangling holding up near 5130 region, While key Pivotal level, remained at 5110 from the (5342-4840 move). Key levels to watch, maximum for this bounce, 5173,5178 and 5217 should cap all attempts, to keep bearish forces alive.

Going short against these levels.

News is Bullish in the USA!

The news from the US is bullish. Job Vacancies are at 3.42 million, Jobs that can’t be filled from the collective pool of the unemployed. Banks Forecloses have dropped 18% from a year earlier and housing starts {up 25% / year), new construction permits signals base setting of the property market, And on top of all this, Mr Bernanke may open the valve and the taps full of cash. This will be interesting to watch. I need some good lunch