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Trading Now

Thursday, August 27, 2009


*wow, 7.3B. What's in a Trillion?
U.S. Treasury collects $7.3B from banks that tapped TARP
The many banks that received state aid through the Troubled Asset Relief Program have paid a total of $7.3 billion in dividend payments to the U.S. Treasury. Citigroup contributed $648 million as part of a deal that resulted in the government taking a 34% stake in the bank. More than a dozen banks have failed to make dividend payments, which were due May 15, mostly because of regulatory restrictions. The Wall Street Journal (26 Aug.)

*see what's happening? First they aren't giving any social security COLA increases due to "little or no inflation." Now they are going to cut our 401K limits. Next it will be IRA and ROTH IRA limits. And don't let them fool ya, it's to pay for all the money they are printing.
IRS expected to cut 401(k) limit to $16,000 for 2010
Because of the low inflation rate in the U.S., the Internal Revenue Service likely will reduce the $16,500 limit on 401(k) contributions to $16,000 for next year. The limit is based on a formula tied to inflation that the IRS is required by law to follow, according to an analysis by human resources consultant Mercer. Unless Congress changes the law, the IRS probably will have no choice, said Bill McClain, a senior consultant at Mercer. USA TODAY (26 Aug.)

*US taxpayers get a bailout in the form of "stimulus" to buy Japanese cars.
Big winner for "Cash for Clunkers" is Toyota
The brand sold most through the U.S. government's "Cash for Clunkers" program was Toyota, which accounted for 19% of the nearly 700,000 vehicles sold, the Transportation Department reported. About 13% were by Honda, while Nissan accounted for 8.7%. The most popular car was Toyota Corolla, followed by Honda Civic, Toyota Camry, Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra. Bloomberg (26 Aug.)

Asian markets decline after Wall Street weakness
Most Asian share markets fell Thursday, tracking Wall Street's decline overnight. Japan's Nikkei 225 dropped 1.6%, Australia's S&P/ASX 20 inched down 0.1% and South Korea's Kospi Composite fell 0.9%. Both China's Shanghai Composite and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index slid 0.7%. New Zealand's NZX 50 gave up 0.5%, Taiwan's Taiex slipped 0.4%, and Singapore's Straits Times Index gained 0.5%. The Wall Street Journal (27 Aug.)

China looks to cut excess capacity in steel, cement
China is moving to prevent further excess capacity in several industries, including steel and cement, Xinhua News Agency said at the end of a Cabinet meeting headed by Premier Wen Jiabao. China's official news outlet also said the Cabinet instructed regulators to "enhance management" of the production of flat glass, chemicals, polysilicon and wind power. The New York Times/The Associated Press (26 Aug.)

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