Prieur’s readings (December 11, 2009)

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This post provides links to a number of interesting articles I have read over the past few days that you may also enjoy.

• Nouriel Roubini (Forbes): Climate change we can believe in, December 10, 2009.
As global leaders begin meeting in Copenhagen to craft a new climate change deal, we take a look at what sort of deal might emerge, what different countries are bringing to the table and the likely economic costs of such a deal.

• Geoff Colvin (Fortune): Mohamed El-Erian: Tough times ahead, December 10, 2009.
Pimco’s CEO says individual investors must change their investing style, such as being less US-centric.

• Ron Coby (Minyanvile): Ten bold predictions and big trades for 2010, December 10, 2009.
Nobody can see the future but I’ll take my best stab at it – here’s hoping I’m not just sticking my foot in my mouth. Well, it wouldn’t be the first time. The following predictions should hopefully be very controversial – just like many of the predictions in my book Discover the Upside of Down.

• Randall Forsyth (Barron’s): Sovereign credits get less-than-royal treatment, December 9, 2009.
Concerns over governments’ finances actually should ultimately benefit the dollar – and gold.

• Martin Feldstein (Financial Times): The dollar’s fall reflects a new role for reserves, December 9, 2009.
In this new world, the dollar has shifted from being almost the sole ‘reserve currency’ of many countries to being the primary ‘investment currency’, a role it will play far into the future.

Reading break:

Considering the short-term technical picture of the US dollar, Adam Hewison (INO.com) provides valuable insight with a short analysis. Click here to access the presentation.

• Zachary Goldfarb (The Washington Post): Mortgage agency’s growth gives fuel to risky lenders; December 10, 2009.
Ginnie Mae has stood on the sidelines as the Justice Department – and, at times, HUD itself – tried to crack down on the company’s business practices. Last week, federal officials removed Lend America from the FHA program altogether, shutting down the firm’s government-backed lending. That triggered an immediate suspension of the company by Ginnie Mae.

• Dan Levy (Bloomberg): US foreclosures to reach 3.9 million in second record year, December 10, 2009.
Foreclosure filings in the US will reach a record for the second consecutive year with 3.9 million notices sent to homeowners in default, RealtyTrac Inc. said.

• Samuel Brittan (Financial Times): Patterns in the eye of the beholder, December 10, 2009.
Is there such a thing as regular business cycles? Or are all fluctuations just an irregular wave-like movement.

• Matt Miller (Financial Times): Congress can deal with jobs and deficit together, December 10, 2009.
Global markets need to know that once economic recovery is entrenched, the US will move back to fiscal sanity. Enforcing a deficit cap, once unemployment has fallen, would do this.

• David Hale (Financial Times): America’s job cuts could help boost its exports, December 10, 2009. December 9, 2009.
The horror of high unemployment has a flip side: US productivity has soared, making America’s corporate sector more competitive.

• Philip Stephens (Financial Times): US-Japan: an easy marriage becomes a ménage à trois, December 10, 2009.
The challenge shared by Washington and Tokyo is how to engage a rising China while balancing its regional ambitions.

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