Items of Interest:
Andrew Martin / New York Times:
Credit Card Industry Aims to Profit From Sterling Payers — Credit cards have long been a very good deal for people who pay their bills on time and in full. Even as card companies imposed punitive fees and penalties on those late with their payments, the best customers racked up cash-back rewards …
Carine Fabius / The Huffington Post: Your Credit Card Company is Spying on YouRyan Avent / The Atlantic Business Channel: Big (Credit Card) Bills on the SidewalkJeanne Cummings / The Politico: Anatomy of a bank lossBJ Bjornson / Newshoggers.com: Banks: Time to Start Soaking Those Who Still Have MoneyMikkel Fishman / The Moderate Voice: Unintended Consequences: Credit Card EditionA.L. / The Anonymous Liberal: Conservatives Lap Up Credit Card Industry PropagandaJimmie / The Sundries Shack: Congress Moves to Hose People Who Pay their DebtsThe Stimulist: Big News, In BriefSteve M. / No More Mister Nice Blog: NICE LITTLE CASH-BACK PROGRAM YOU'VE GOT THERE. SHAME IF ANYTHING HAPPENED TO IT.Latest Open Salon Blog: Credit Card Corpo's to Pit Customers Against Each OtherBruce McQuain / QandO: Pay Your Credit Card On Time and Suffer AnywayMary Kane / The Washington Independent: Empty Threats and Credit Card Companies
Fed Should Fuel Faster Inflation to Help U.S. Economy, Mankiw, Rogoff Say -- What the U.S. economy may need is a dose of good old-fashioned inflation.
So say economists including Gregory Mankiw, former White House adviser, and Kenneth Rogoff, who was chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. They argue that a looser rein on inflation would make it easier for debt-strapped consumers and governments to meet their obligations...
“I’m advocating 6 percent inflation for at least a couple of years,” says Rogoff, 56, who’s now a professor at Harvard University. “It would ameliorate the debt bomb and help us work through the deleveraging process.”
"Mankiw says the central bank should pledge to produce “significant” inflation. If Americans were convinced of the Fed’s commitment, they’d buy and borrow more now, he says." ....
Kevin Depew / Minyanville:
5 Things for Tuesday... -- So whenever I hear someone make a case for higher inflation as a means of "helping the economy", what I see is someone standing on a whiskey barrel in the town square, peddling snake oil - fer all that ails ye.
Britain sinks into deepest deflation since 1948 -- The British economy sank deeper into deflation last month to the lowest level in more than 60 years as the effect of falling house prices and lower mortgage repayments escalated...
Housing Starts at Record Low in April -- Total housing starts were at 458 thousand (SAAR - Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate) in April, the all time record low. The previous record low was 488 thousand in January (the lowest level since the Census Bureau began tracking housing starts in 1959).
Single-family starts were at 368 thousand (SAAR) in April; just above the revised record low in January (357 thousand)...
$8,000 fast cash for first-time homebuyers -- HUD plans to tweak $8,000 tax credit rules so first-time homebuyers can get instant down-payment assistance...
CNBC Realty Check:
Appraisals Muddy Housing Recovery
Don Surber: Daily scoreboard — 1. General Motors will become …Kim Priestap / Wizbang: US Government to Buy GM if it Declares BankruptcyMichelle Malkin: Making Government Motors officialBryan McAffee / Right Pundits: New General Motors Bankruptcy Plan Involves Government PurchaseStephen Green / Pajamas Media: Car Baby, Tar Baby
Obama's $1,300 car tax -- Nobody in the White House is going to call the president’s “mileage and pollution” plan what it is.
It’s a $1,300 car tax. On the working class. On the middle class. On everyone who has responded to the government’s consumption-mania incentives — loosened credit, tax deductions — and bought/planned to buy a new car without taking into account these unanticipated costs...
Iain Murray / The Corner: Re: He Who Pays the PiperKarl / Hot Air: Obama raising car prices and killing people is just for startersSteve / Sweetness & Light: ‘Obama Cars’ Will Cost $1,300 MoreAlex Koppelman / Salon: Are the new fuel standards worth the cost?Jimmie / The Sundries Shack: I Guess Global Warming Really is Going to Cost Us.Robert Stacy McCain / The Other McCain: They Can Have My Gas Guzzler When They Pry It From My Cold Dead Fingers!Kim Priestap / Wizbang: Obama's New CAFE Standards Will Make Cars More Expensive and More DangerousWilliam Teach / Stop The ACLU: Obama To Announce Plans To Drastically Increase Auto CostsEmptywheel: Details on the New Fuel Efficiency StandardsDaniel J. Mitchell / Cato @ Liberty: Simultaneously Destroying and Subsidizing the Auto Industry
- A New Dilemma for the Dollar - Randall Forsyth, Barron's
- 22 Reasons Obama Will Raise Your Taxes Soon - P. Farrell, MarketWatch
- Let's Snooker The TARP Babies - Joel Kotkin, Forbes
- Is Nouriel Roubini Lucky or Just Good? - Julia Ioffe, The New Republic
- SEC Finds Whizzes to Bust Wall Street’s Worst - Susan Antilla, Bloomberg
- What is Driving Rising Healthcare Costs? - Dustin Chambers, American
- How Washington Rations Healthcare - Editorial, Wall Street Journal
- The Media's Broken Business Model - Francis Cianfrocca, The New Ledger
- A Trio of Views To Guide Investors - Bill Fleckenstein, MSN Money
- Income Investing Just Got a Lot Harder - Jonathan Hoenig, SmartMoney
- Obama Should Reappoint Bernanke - Brian Wesbury & Robert Stein, Forbes
- How to Fix the Compromised New York Fed - Eliot Spitzer, Slate
- Shadow Banks Brought Down Wall Street - David Weidner, MarketWatch
- Stock Markets Missed Out On a Sentimental Rally - Alan Abelson, Barron's
- The Feds Need a Business Exit Strategy - Chris Farrell, Business Week
- Pension Scandal Is Failure to Fix What's Broken - Amity Shlaes, Bloomberg
- Let's Have Cap and No Trade - David Sokol, Washington Post
- China's Growing Energy-Efficiency Edge - Edward Silver, Los Angeles Times
- Some Bankruptcies Are Worth It - Lee Buchheit & David Skeel, NY Times
- The Flat Tax Versus the Fair Tax - John Tamny, RealClearMarkets
- Intel Is Harmed by EC's Ignorance - James Lakely, Investor's Business Daily
- It's Hard To Justify Today's High Gas Prices - Irwin Kellner, MarketWatch
- Is Stock Analysis Completely Worthless? - John Carney, Clusterstock
- Is The Younger Generation Turning Toward Government? - Atlantic
- The Failure of Old Ideas - Ezra Klein, Washington Post
- Why Didn’t The WSJ Stress-Test The Big Banks? - Felix Salmon, Reuters