Implode-Explode Heavy Industries news feed http://implode-explode.com/ Tracking the many faces of the global credit implosion. en-us iehi-feed-64373 Thu, 08 Nov 2018 21:25:25 GMT Volkswagen reportedly planning to sell electric Tesla rival for under $23k http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-11-08_VolkswagenreportedlyplanningtosellelectricTeslarivalforunder23k.html Volkswagen intends to sell electric cars for less than 20,000 euros ($22,836) and protect German jobs by converting three factories to make the Tesla rival, a source familiar with the plans said.

VW and other carmakers are struggling to adapt quickly enough to stringent rules introduced after the carmaker was found to have cheated diesel emissions tests, with its chief executive Herbert Diess warning last month that Germany's auto industry faces extinction.

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VW's strategy shift comes as cities start to ban diesel engine vehicles, forcing carmakers to think of new ways to safeguard 600,000 German industrial jobs, of which 436,000 are at car companies and their suppliers.

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iehi-feed-64355 Fri, 02 Nov 2018 22:49:12 GMT Trump administration to reinstate all Iran sanctions http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-11-02_TrumpadministrationtoreinstateallIransanctions.html iehi-feed-64341 Mon, 29 Oct 2018 15:09:45 GMT Far-right candidate wins Brazil presidential election http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-10-29_FarrightcandidatewinsBrazilpresidentialelection.html iehi-feed-64305 Thu, 18 Oct 2018 22:50:28 GMT Justice Department asks Supreme Court to toss kids' climate change lawsuit http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-10-18_JusticeDepartmentasksSupremeCourttotosskidsclimatechangelawsuit.html The suit was filed in 2015 by a group of young people, ranging in age from 10 to 21, who said the federal government has failed to stop climate change by promoting the use of fossil fuels for more than 50 years. They claim that policy violated their constitutional right to "a climate system capable of sustaining human life."

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They seek sharp reductions in carbon dioxide emissions and a national plan for restoring the earth's energy balance. Despite repeated efforts by the federal government -- under both the Obama and Trump administrations -- to get the lawsuit tossed out, lower courts have allowed it to go forward. It is now set for 50 days of what the plaintiffs call the trial of the century, beginning October 29 in Oregon.

Solicitor General Noel Francisco said by allowing the case to proceed to trial, the judge overseeing the case wrongly found in favor of the young people's claim that they have a right to certain climate conditions.

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In July, the Supreme Court declined a similar request from the government to put the case on hold but called the breadth of the lawsuit's claims "striking" and said it's debatable whether the courts have the authority to entertain them.

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iehi-feed-64304 Thu, 18 Oct 2018 19:46:31 GMT Fed points to more rate hikes amid criticism from Trump http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-10-18_FedpointstomoreratehikesamidcriticismfromTrump.html Federal Reserve officials remain convinced that continuing to gradually increase interest rates is the best formula to preserve a steady economy, according to minutes released Wednesday of the central bank's most recent policy meeting. That may not please President Donald Trump, who has been vocal in his criticism of the central bank's actions.

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Another development from the last meeting saw the committee remove the word "accommodative" from its description of the future policy path. In a post-meeting news conference, Powell told reporters not to read too much into the move, but the minutes provided more detail on why the FOMC decided to change the language.

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iehi-feed-64298 Wed, 17 Oct 2018 14:00:42 GMT Canada Makes Marijuana Legal, and a National Experiment Begins http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-10-17_CanadaMakesMarijuanaLegalandaNationalExperimentBegins.html Canada on Wednesday became the first major world economy to legalize recreational marijuana use, beginning a national experiment that will alter the country's social, cultural and economic fabric, and present the nation with its biggest public policy challenge in decades... Canada is only the second country in the world, after Uruguay, to legalize it.

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Under Canada's new federal cannabis act, adults will be allowed to possess, carry and share with other adults up to 30 grams of dried cannabis, enough to roll roughly 60 regular-size joints. They will also be permitted a maximum of four homegrown marijuana plants per household.

Marijuana for medical purposes has been legal in Canada since 2001, and about 330,000 Canadians, including cancer patients, are registered to receive it from licensed producers.

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To ensure that prices remain competitive with the black market, one gram of cannabis can be purchased for as low as about $4, or $5.25 Canadian dollars.

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As with cigarettes, the cannabis is clearly marked with health warnings like "One in eleven people who use cannabis will become addicted."

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The government's stated rationale for legalizing cannabis is to tame an illegal trade estimated at $6.2 billion. But from Toronto to Winnipeg to Vancouver, hundreds of illegal shops have indicated they have no intention of shutting down, and the black market supply chain remains deeply entrenched.

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iehi-feed-64287 Sun, 14 Oct 2018 18:17:06 GMT Trump-Supported MBS Goes Rogue in Saudi Arabia As Reforms Fail To Materialize http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-10-14_TrumpSupportedMBSGoesRogueinSaudiArabiaAsReformsFailToMaterializ.html ... increasingly it seems that the crown prince, better known as M.B.S., orchestrated the torture, assassination and dismemberment of an American-based journalist using diplomatic premises in a NATO country.

That is monstrous, and it's compounded by the tepid response from Washington. President Trump is already rejecting the idea of responding to such a murder by cutting off weapons sales. Trump sounds as if he believes that the consequence of such an assassination should be a hiccup and then business as usual.

Frankly, it's a disgrace that Trump administration officials and American business tycoons enabled and applauded M.B.S. as he imprisoned business executives, kidnapped Lebanon's prime minister, rashly created a crisis with Qatar, and went to war in Yemen to create what the United Nations calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis there. Some eight million Yemenis on the edge of starvation there don't share this bizarre view that M.B.S. is a magnificent reformer.

Trump has expressed "great confidence" in M.B.S. and said that he and King Salman "know exactly what they are doing." Jared Kushner wooed M.B.S. and built a close relationship with him -- communicating privately without involving State Department experts -- in ways that certainly assisted M.B.S. in his bid to consolidate power for himself.

The bipartisan cheers from Washington, Silicon Valley and Wall Street fed his recklessness. If he could be feted after kidnapping a Lebanese prime minister and slaughtering Yemeni children, why expect a fuss for murdering a mere journalist?

M.B.S. knows how to push Americans' buttons, speaking about reform and playing us like a fiddle. His willingness to sound accepting of Israel may also be one reason Trump and so many Americans were willing to embrace M.B.S. even as he was out of control at home.

In the end, M.B.S. played Kushner, Trump and his other American acolytes for suckers. The White House boasted about $110 billion in arms sales, but nothing close to that came through. Saudi Arabia backed away from Trump's Middle East peace deal. Financiers salivated over an initial public offering for Aramco, the state-owned oil company, but that keeps getting delayed.

The crackdown on corruption is an example of M.B.S.'s manipulation and hypocrisy. It sounded great, but M.B.S. himself has purchased a $300 million castle in France, and a $500 million yacht -- and he didn't buy them by scrimping on his government salary.

... . In the United States, we also must investigate whether Saudis bought influence with spending that benefited the Trump family, such as $270,000 spent as of early 2017 by a lobbying firm for Saudi Arabia at the Trump hotel in Washington. The Washington Post reported that Saudi bookings at Trump Chicago increased 169 percent from the first half of 2016 to the first half of this year, and that the general manager of a Trump hotel in New York told investors that revenues rose partly because of "a last-minute visit to New York by the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia."

Trump loves teh swaggering "strongmen"; all they need is to pay a little lip service to progressive policies.

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iehi-feed-64274 Wed, 10 Oct 2018 14:54:39 GMT Canada legalizes pot: Five things to know as Canada becomes the biggest country to support legalization of marijuana http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-10-10_CanadalegalizespotFivethingstoknowasCanadabecomesthebiggestcount.html iehi-feed-64240 Thu, 27 Sep 2018 16:13:36 GMT Kavanaugh Is A Creature Of Dark-Money Backing | Wall St. On Parade http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-27_KavanaughIsACreatureOfDarkMoneyBackingWallStOnParade.html The Kavanaugh Nomination's Money Trail Leads Back to Clarence Thomas, from the same writers.]]> iehi-feed-64237 Wed, 26 Sep 2018 18:22:08 GMT A Chinese Company Reshaping the World Leaves a Troubled Trail http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-26_AChineseCompanyReshapingtheWorldLeavesaTroubledTrail.html State-owned CCCC, one of the world's largest companies with annual revenue greater than Procter & Gamble Co. or FedEx Corp., says its portfolio of 700 projects in more than 100 countries outside China has a value of more than $100 billion. That makes it the largest Belt and Road contractor, according to RWR Advisory Group in Washington, which tracks Chinese investments abroad for government and corporate clients.

It is also one of the most vexed. CCCC and its subsidiaries have left a trail of controversy in many of the countries where they operate. The company was blacklisted by the World Bank in 2009 for alleged fraudulent bidding practices on a highway contract in the Philippines. Malaysia halted two rail projects this year amid corruption suspicions. In Australia, a government investigation published in March said that a CCCC-owned company may have been lax in supervising construction of a children's hospital, where the water supply was tainted with lead and a subcontractor installed asbestos-filled panels--problems CCCC said weren't its fault.

The Colombo project has drawn protests over environmental issues and is dogged by worries about the types of businesses it will attract, its governance under a legal structure separate from the rest of the country, and the strain that such a huge development will place on surrounding transport, water, and energy infrastructure.

The list goes on: allegations of mistreatment of railway workers in Kenya and of corruption in Bangladesh. In Canada, the company was blocked in May from acquiring a construction firm on national security grounds. And there have been calls by some members of the U.S. Congress to sanction CCCC because of its alleged role in helping the Chinese military build bases on reefs along a disputed area of the South China Sea--an issue that scuttled the company's plans in 2015 to raise $1 billion by spinning off its dredging unit in a public offering on the Hong Kong stock exchange.

There's no shortage of companies, including American ones, that have been accused of bribery and environmental damage when operating abroad. Yet the number and scope of allegations involving CCCC set it apart

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iehi-feed-64234 Sun, 23 Sep 2018 16:51:57 GMT Interest Rates Are About To Matter - Roberts http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-24_InterestRatesAreAboutToMatterRoberts.html Economic growth has peaked every time rates got this extended. (Which shouldn't be a surprise.)... While the markets are currently ignoring the risk of higher rates, even a cursory glance at the chart above suggests that we are near the point where "rates will matter."... The issue is not if, but when, the Fed hikes rates to the point that something "breaks."

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Of course, while so-called "conservative Republicans" are breaking their arms to pat themselves on the back for "getting the economy going again," the reality is they have likely doomed the economy to another decade of sluggish growth once the short-term burst from massive deficit spending subsides. The unbridled surge in debt and deficits is set to get materially worse in the months ahead as real revenue growth is slowing.

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iehi-feed-64224 Wed, 19 Sep 2018 22:19:59 GMT Alibaba will no longer bring 1 million jobs to the US, citing tariffs http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-20_Alibabawillnolongerbring1millionjobstotheUScitingtariffs.html iehi-feed-64208 Fri, 14 Sep 2018 19:10:23 GMT Trader blows €100m hole in Nasdaq's Nordic power market http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-15_Traderblows100mholeinNasdaqsNordicpowermarket.html One of Norway's richest men has blown a hole of more than €100m in a stability fund that ensures the safety of derivatives-trading in European electricity markets.Coming in the same week as the 10th anniversary of Lehman Brothers' collapse, the trading losses will focus attention on the robustness of standards promoted by policymakers globally after the financial crisis.Einar Aas, a private trader who has been among Norway's highest earners in recent years thanks to aggressive bets in European power markets, saw his positions collapse on Monday after extreme market moves in German and Nordic energy markets.Nasdaq, the principal trading exchange where futures contracts tied to physical energy markets in the Nordic region are transacted, said Mr Aas had defaulted on Tuesday after he was unable to meet margin calls at its clearing house on lossmaking trades.

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Nasdaq cut the entire trade on Wednesday and the exchange confirmed that the loss accounted for all of the exchange's own default fund of €7m and swallowed €107m, or two-thirds, of its €166m mutual default fund that clearing house members must contribute to.

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With Nasdaq and members of its clearing house repairing the damage, questions as to how a single trader could come close to wiping out the clearing house's layers of protection will merit the attention of regulators, including the European Central Bank.Members of the clearing house include some of the biggest banks and energy traders such as Morgan Stanley, UBS and Equinor, Norway's state oil company... .The catalyst for the trading loss was a series of backfiring bets on the price difference between German and Nordic power markets, according to multiple sources in the industry.

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iehi-feed-64185 Wed, 05 Sep 2018 15:59:52 GMT Venezuela: Life Without Water: Sweaty, Smelly, and Furious in Caracas http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-05_VenezuelaLifeWithoutWaterSweatySmellyandFuriousinCaracas.html Dishes are brushed off and reused, and clothing is not something regularly laundered, though, personally, I draw the line at multiple wearings of underwear or socks. You ask friends whether it's okay to flush. You often do not. We're sweaty and, yes, smelly, especially in the rainy season when the humidity can top 80 percent. We're at risk, too, because water stagnating in the vessels that people stash around their homes attracts mosquitoes; malaria rates have soared.

The poorest, as usual, have it the worst, though no one is spared. Hospitals and schools, posh neighborhoods and slums, they all go without water--at times for weeks on end--making this man-made drought arguably the most equalizing disaster the socialist government has ever managed to engineer.

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iehi-feed-64182 Mon, 03 Sep 2018 15:48:44 GMT For Venezuelans fleeing economic catastrophe, Brazil has proven a tough place to land http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-03_ForVenezuelansfleeingeconomiccatastropheBrazilhasprovenatoughpla.html iehi-feed-64179 Fri, 31 Aug 2018 17:17:45 GMT Stocks snap 4-day winning streak after report Trump backs tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-09-01_Stockssnap4daywinningstreakafterreportTrumpbackstariffson200bill.html Bloomberg News reported that Trump told aides he supports moving forward with proposed tariffs on an additional $200 billion in Chinese goods. The report also said, however, that Trump has not made up his mind on the matter. The White House declined to comment on the report.

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Investors also watched as the U.S. and Canada tried to strike a deal on trade.

"We had some momentum when the U.S and Mexico struck a deal earlier in the week," said Ryan Nauman, market strategist at Informa Financial Intelligence. "But as the deadline approaches, people are getting a bit worried."''

David Stockman's comments on Trump's NAFTA "revamp", from this article, are pretty hilarious:

David Stockman, Ronald Reagan's budget director, described that agreement as an older version of NAFTA with Trump missteps sprinkled in. "There was never a problem with NAFTA anyway, and what he has done is basically remove the name and complicated the machinery [and] given a big wage increase to Mexican workers," Stockman told Bloomberg Television on Friday.
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iehi-feed-64168 Fri, 10 Aug 2018 21:09:57 GMT Turkish crisis littered with lessons for Trump, US economy http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-08-10_TurkishcrisislitteredwithlessonsforTrumpUSeconomy.html Had global liquidity conditions not been as ample as they had been over the past several years, Turkey would not have been able to run the outsized external imbalances that it has managed to run, nor would its corporate sector have been able to incur as large a U.S. dollar denominated debt as its corporate sector has built up.

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Closer to home, Turkey's present economic debacle might remind us that there comes a day of reckoning for reckless macroeconomic policies. This would seem particularly pertinent in the current U.S. context where a massive unfunded tax cut together with public spending increases are expected to give rise to budget deficits in excess of 5 percent of GDP for as far as the eye can see.

It would be fanciful to think, as the Trump administration seems to do, that these budget deficits will not lead to a widening in the U.S. external current account deficit or that these deficits can be financed indefinitely without a dollar crisis at some point.''

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iehi-feed-64163 Wed, 08 Aug 2018 17:57:48 GMT TV maker laying off most workers, blaming Trump tariffs http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-08-08_TVmakerlayingoffmostworkersblamingTrumptariffs.html President Donald Trump's tariffs against China are causing a South Carolina television maker to lay off nearly all of its employees because of the sudden increase in the price of components for its products.

Element TV Company will let 126 workers go, most of them on Oct. 5, leaving behind a skeleton crew of eight employees to watch the Fairfield County plant in hopes it can reopen in three to six months, the company said in a letter to state employment officials Monday.

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The Element plant opened to huge fanfare about five years ago. Trump's current U.N. Ambassador, Nikki Haley, was South Carolina governor at the time. In August 2014, she did a live video feed from the plant beamed to a Walmart manufacturing summit, where she spoke about how to bring manufacturing jobs back to the U.S. by selling her state.

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Tariffs could lead to more job losses in the state, especially in the auto industry. Swedish carmaker Volvo has said tariffs could prevent it from reaching its goal of 4,000 workers by 2021 at its just opened plant near Charleston. BMW has warned Trump administration officials that some if not many of its 10,000 workers at its plant near Spartanburg could have their jobs at risk if tariffs continue.

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iehi-feed-64148 Tue, 24 Jul 2018 23:26:30 GMT Trump's trade war is economic suicide http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-07-24_Trumpstradewariseconomicsuicide.html Trump has long made clear that he wants Americans to pay higher prices for cars coming into the nation. On the campaign trail, he promised a tariff of 35 percent on "every car, every truck, and every part manufactured in Ford's Mexico plant that comes across the border." This past March, he threatened to impose tariffs on Europe' automobile manufacturers.

But even cars produced domestically will rise in price thanks to the president's economically illiterate trade interventions. As raw materials such as steel and aluminum rise in price, the cost of manufacturing each vehicle will rise. Manufacturers will pass those higher costs on to consumers.

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The damage extends beyond our wallets and pocketbooks. As domestic manufacturing costs increase, the competitiveness of some American producers decreases. 

Consider American Keg Company of Pennsylvania. Already, the company laid off a third of its workers due to rising steel costs.  Or take General Motors. The automobile giant has announced it might have to lower wages and cut jobs. 

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iehi-feed-64147 Tue, 24 Jul 2018 23:21:23 GMT Trump To Shell Out $12 Billion To Bail Out Farmers http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2018-07-24_TrumpToShellOut12BillionToBailOutFarmers.html The Trump administration on Tuesday announced up to $12 billion in emergency relief for farmers hurt by the president's trade war, moving to insulate food producers from looming financial losses that would be a direct result of President Trump's policies.

The aid to farmers, announced by the United States Department of Agriculture, will come through a direct assistance program, one designed to help with food purchase and distribution and one specifically geared toward promoting trade.

The move is an indication that Mr. Trump -- ignoring the concerns of farmers, their representatives in Congress, and even some of his own aides about the adverse consequences of a trade war he says he relishes -- plans to plow forward in escalating his tariff tit-for-tat around the world.

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The plan, first reported by The Washington Post, was met with swift condemnation from Republicans and trade groups, who said that Mr. Trump had devised an expensive and clunky solution to a crisis of Depression-era proportions.

"This trade war is cutting the legs out from under farmers and White House's `plan' is to spend $12 billion on gold crutches," said Senator Ben Sasse, Republican of Nebraska. "This administration's tariffs and bailouts aren't going to make America great again, they're just going to make it 1929 again."

One trade group leader said farmers need contracts, not aid, for stability.

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