I was very surprised by the result as Obama deffinately let the proceedings slide a little out of control. The moderator basically interferred as little as possible, which was also a surprise and should have been picked up on by Obama, but wasn't. I still can't conceive a Romney victory, but it's at least going to be a fight now. If Romney was to win I'd predict a few things:
- A big uptick in equities
- A resurgent USD
- The end end of Bernanke or at least a Fed Board of Governors that are likely to see plenty of turnover
“Comp [compensation] comes down because the amount of people in the business comes down,” said Mr Gorman. “What the Street has historically done is when revenues went up, they kept the comp-to-revenue ratio flat. They rank comp by ratio. When revenues went down, they increased the comp-to-revenue ratio because they said, ‘We might lose all our people. We have to increase it’. ”
Finally earllier this year I was warning about the potential losses likely to come to light in the annual student loan default statistics, which are published as the new academic year begins (i.e. when cheques are due). The Department of Education published a very concerning note regarding the situation:
"The U.S. Department of Education today released official FY 2010 two-year and official FY 2009 three-year federal student loan cohort default rates. This is the first time the Department has issued an official three-year rate, which was 13.4 percent nationally for the FY 2009 cohort, a slight decrease from the trial three-year rate of 13.8 percent for the FY 2008 cohort. For-profit institutions had the highest average three-year default rates at 22.7 percent, with public institutions following at 11 percent and private non-profit institutions at 7.5 percent. The Department is in the process of switching from a two-year cohort default rate to a three-year measurement as required by the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008. The national two-year rate rose to 9.1 percent for the FY 2010 cohort, from 8.8 percent in FY 2009."
I wonder what 2011's default rate was? Leaving that aside, lets just say things haven't gotten any better, so now we have over 100bn of defaulting loans??? At what stage does this become a huge deal? Unless you have jobs for these graduates the US economy is just layering more zombie assets that will need to be reserved against by a banking system that just doesn't need its solvency tested further.
There is a major debate within the cycling community in Sydney regarding helmets. There's a strong hardcore who want to fight the compulsory helmet laws. I was on a well known website recently and when I expressed the view that fighting helmet laws was a worthless battle in a bigger war I was absolutely slayed by strange angry faction of riders. I don't get it? I mean why can't they see that wearing a helmet is a small price to pay for the moral high ground over the driving community? None of these people has read Sun Tzu's Art of War:
"If your enemy is superior, evade him. If angry, irritate him. If equally matched, fight, and if not split and reevaluate. "
Maybe if they did they could appreciate the following video . . .