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Afghan President Hamid Karzai has forced the U.S.-led military coalition to cede control of a controversial security force in northern Afghanistan that he said had been set up without his authorization.

Read more: WSJ.com: World News

A statement by Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors as listed in a report on existing home sales caught my eye today. "From a consumer's perspective, only the local market information matters and there are no changes to local multiple listing service data or local supply-and-demand balance, or to local home prices" said Yun. On the surface, the statement seems incredulous. How can the national data be completely screwed up, in need of major revisions, if the

Read more: Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis


The Iraqi government announced on Wednesday that it will respect existing contracts with ExxonMobil Corp in the south of the country after the company signed new oil  Read more...
An informant in a state fraud case against Bank of New York Mellon Corp. has … provided prosecutors a rare inside peek into how the bank allegedly scrambled to contain the fallout from a fast-growing government investigation, according to hundreds of pages of confidential documents. Documents Relating to State Fraud Case

Read more: ValueWalk.com


Wolf Richter   www.testosteronepit.com

Among the “good” economic news today was private residential construction spending,

Read more...
A brawl erupted between rival clergymen participating in an annual cleaning ritual at the church built at what Christians regard as Jesus' traditional birthplace.

Read more: WSJ.com: World News

My afternoon train reads:

• Why do stock prices rise every January? New year optimism. (Washington Post)
• Top Economists of 2011 (Making Of An Economist)
• How to Build Your Financial Dream

Read more...
This year appears set to eclipse the postwar record low rate of passenger deaths—one per 6.4 million passengers.

Read more: WSJ.com: World News

"JPMorgan Chase & Co has been sued for $95 million by the trustee for securities marketed in 2005 by the former Bear Stearns Cos over alleged misrepresentations regarding the underlying mortgage loans."

Read more: Implode-Explode Heavy Industries news feed

SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will hold a funeral procession on Wednesday for its deceased "dear leader", Kim Jong-il, making way for his son, Kim Jong-un, to become the third member of the family to run the isolated and unpredictable Asian country.

Read more: Reuters: Top News

Today King World News interviewed reached out to New Zealand to speak with one of the most street smart pros in the resource sector, Rick Rule, Founder of Global Resource Investments. KWN wanted to find out from Rule how investors and speculators could make huge returns in 2012. Here is what Rule had to say: “We are having a big up-day but it really doesn’t matter, it’s irrelevant. It’s background noise. I’m looking for a move in gold from current levels to $2,200. There are $7 trillion in sovereign debt refinancings this year and at the same time there is continued weakness in the banking sector.”

Read more: http://kingworldnews.com/kingworldnews/KWN_DailyWeb/Entries/2012/1/3_Rick_Rule_-_How_to_Make_50_to_100_Times_Your_Money_in_2012.html

If there is anything that the European banks' negative response to the LTRO's invitation to use "free money" and relever even as Europe faces a perfect storm of deleveraging in 2012 (a topic beaten to death by us here previously) is that the problem at the root of the European financial crisis is not a liquidity one - it is, and has always been one of solvency, or, said otherwise, a problem when bank assets do not generate enough cash flow to satisfy cash outflows from bank liabilities, period, the end. Everything else is irrelevant. And while the market is fascinated in complete noise such
Read more...
``The scholars at Stanford University have been sticking their studious fingers in the eyes of California's public pension systems for some time -- by simply calculating how deeply in the red those systems would be if they earned a less-rosy-than-anticipated return on investments.''

Read more: Implode-Explode Heavy Industries news feed

With gold trading $40 higer, silver up nearly $2, crude oil rising $4.25 a barrel and mining shares on the move, today King World News interviewed John Embry, Chief Investment Strategist of the $10 billion strong Sprott Asset Management to get his take on where he sees gold, silver, crude oil and the mining shares headed from here. When asked about the action in gold and silver, Embry said, “I do think there is a strong probability that the end of 2011 marked the bottom for gold and silver and that may be the lows that will ever be seen. That’s a strong statement, but the reality is gold and silver may never trade lower than that again.”

Read more: http://kingworldnews.com/kingworldnews/KWN_DailyWeb/Entries/2012/1/3_John_Embry_-_Gold_Will_Not_Trade_Below_$1,500_Ever_Again.html

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street stocks kicked off 2012 with a rally on Tuesday after data showed U.S. manufacturing activity and construction spending picked up, signaling the economic recovery was gaining steam.
King World News: Pass the Kool Aid. Seriously, I Loves Me the Kool Aid. Some additional thoughts: Eric King’s “KingWorldNews” gets my nod for ‘blog of the year.’ Last year he started out on the Alexa rating at around 100,000; … Continue reading →

Read more: Max Keiser

Michael Platt, CEO and founder of BlueCrest Capital, a $30 billion hedge fund, states the case in an interview on Bloomberg for being totally on the sidelines in short-term US Treasuries and German Bonds. Link if video does not play: Euro Crisis - Hedge Fund CEO Mike Platt - Bloomberg 15-12-2011 The video is 15 minutes long and well-worth watching. Platt is not a permabear by any means. He caught the rebound nicely in 2009 but now believes the prudent thing to do is completely avoid risk

Read more: Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis

China has begun operating a homegrown alternative to the U.S. Global Positioning System which, experts say, could help its military track U.S. ships.

Read more: WSJ.com: World News


The biggest FOMC news released today was not the December minutes - there was absolutely no surprise there. The biggest news, by far, is that as Read more...

TEHRAN/DUBAI (Reuters) - The U.S. Fifth Fleet said on Wednesday it would not allow any disruption of traffic in the Strait of Hormuz, after Iran threatened to stop ships moving through the world's most important oil route.

Read more: Reuters: Top News

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