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All posts by Ana Fuentes

To Wall Street’s Favorite Media, Spain Looks Quite Sexy Again

World economy

NEW YORK | By Ana Fuentes | Remember when Spain’s sovereign debt was smashing to a euro-era record high? Just 18 months ago Wall Street market makers as well as their favorite media expressed their suspicious about non-performing loans, the Spanish banks’ health, and government reforms. Pundits even talked about a Spain leaving the euro after the “Grexit”. Goldman Sachs was sure that “the worst” was yet to come and claimed that the country “should ask for a “Spailout.” But things have changed and now it’s time for the ‘mea culpa’ and the “may be it wasn’t that bad.” Investors are showing interest in Spain and headlines talk about growth, exports boom and the country getting back on its feet bank’s bailout.

World economy

Can JP Morgan Settlement Set a Precedent?

NEW YORK | By Ana Fuentes | JP Morgan, the U.S. biggest bank, will have to pay a historic penalty of $13 billion over faulty mortgage practices, according to the settlement with the Department of Justice announced on Tuesday. That’s the equivalent of Iceland’s annual GDP, and more than three times the amount BP had to pay for the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. For some, it was about time that the administration started to take action against those who ignited the economic crisis. Others believe JP Morgan is just a scapegoat.

World economy

Yellen On Tapering: Not Quite There Yet

NEW YORK | By Ana Fuentes | Thursday was Janet Yellen’s big day. In front of the Senate Banking Committee she ran through her prepared speech (released by the Fed on Wednesday) and acknowledged “the risks” of injecting QE steroids to the U.S. economy for too long. However, she argued,  inflation is still too low and unemployment rate, too high. “The benefits exceed the costs” of the Fed’s current policies, she said. Will we see any tapering soon? Certainly, but not yet.

News in Europe

EU Growth: If Europe is the ‘avant garde’, we’re doomed!

SAO PAULO | By Marcus Nunes | A depressing quote: “A deeper, more worrying explanation is that Europe does not have a strong desire for growth. In fact, some have become convinced that, given the environmental consequences, economic growth does more harm than good and that the crisis should be regarded as an opportunity to shift to a more frugal economy.The growth agenda, according to this view, is a Trojan horse for ecological neglect – for example, through more business-friendly environmental regulation or shale-gas exploration.” (By French government’s Commissioner General for Policy Planning

World economy

The U.S. debt drama – soap opera or Lehman quality?

HAMBURG | By Dr. Beate Reszat| Shortly after the US default had been averted on October 16, the S&P 500 closed at an all-time peak of 1,744.50. Alan Wheatley (Reuters) commented enthusiastically: “If Wall Street’s record high is a signpost, the U.S. economy has every chance of pulling further ahead of a stuttering Europe despite new battles to come in Washington over the government’s budget and debt ceiling.” Does this mean that all the worries of the past weeks about a “Lehman moment” were nothing but hot air? Is the debacle that we observed nothing more than an episode in an endless soap opera that long ceased to impress markets?

World economy

Closer Look: How Agreements Like the TPP Press China to Reform

BEIJING/ NEW YORK | By Zhang Yuanan, Chen Lixiong, and Chen Qin via Caixin | Major changes to the trade landscape are coming, meaning China must adapt or risk losing its growth momentum. Here’s why Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) stands out from many other trade talks.

Spain economy

FDI Up, Yield Down, and Spanish Economy Gains Momentum

MADRID | By The Corner Team | The Spanish economy is enjoying some hopeful news at last. After 38 months in the red, retail sales in September rose. Foreign direct investment reached 20 billion from January to August, a symptom of consumer’s confidence increasing. And yields dropped to the lowest since May before the government pays interest and bond maturities of about 21 billion euros.

Company news

Eurostoxx 50 Analysis | Air Liquide

MADRID | The Corner Team | Air Liquide keeps its goal of boosting After Tax Profit (ATP) this year and claims to foresee a better evolution in 4Q13, in addition to the recovery already experienced in 3Q13.

World economy

NSA Spying Scandal: Obama Puts In Place PR Damage Control

NEW YORK | By Ana Fuentes | As the NSA spying scandal spreads, the White House is profusely working on damage control. Last night it reported that no final decision has been made, but many officials are already talking of cutting the NSA wings in some way. To reinforce this message, yesterday President Obama came off as special guest on Fusion, a new cable channel for millenials and a highly anticipated television release. Also, Senate intelligence committee chair Diane Feinstein, who used to be a loyal defender of NSA activities, called for a total review of its powers.

World economy

U.S. Spying on EU: Is White House Damage Control Version Credible?

NEW YORK | By Ana Fuentes | According to the White House, during the almost 5 years that the NSA was eavesdropping EU leaders, Obama had no clue. How can the leader of the most powerful economy in the world, who commands drone attacks and missions to the outer space, not know that their intelligence services are monitoring its European partners?