A Tale Of Two Markets

Fed to Buy Unlimited Government Debt and Lend to Businesses

By Associated Press – Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

In its boldest effort to protect the U.S. economy from the coronavirus, the Federal Reserve says it will buy as much government debt as it deems necessary and will also begin lending to small and large businesses and local governments to help them weather the crisis.

The Fed’s announcement Monday removes any dollar limits from its plans to support the flow of credit through an economy that has been ravaged by the viral outbreak. The central bank’s all-out effort has now gone beyond even the extraordinary drive it made to rescue the economy from the 2008 financial crisis.

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Dead Malls: The Steady Decline of American Shopping Centers

By Competitive Enterprise Institute- Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

The kind of American chain stores and retail formats that dominated the second half of the 20th century have fallen on hard times in the 21st, and commentary on this influential and dislocating trend has become a cottage industry unto itself. Amid coverage in the business press on topics like “the winners and losers of the retail apocalypse” and how “1 in 3 American malls are doomed,” there is even a vibrant and, to many, inexplicable cultural fascination with retail history and dead malls.

The question of how the United States ended up with so many large, enclosed suburban shopping centers built between 1960 and 2000 is an interesting one. Naturally, trends in urban planning and government housing policy played a role. We wouldn’t have had as many suburban malls—or as many suburbs—without the interstate highway system.

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Biofuels

By Andy May – Re-Blogged From WUWT

According to Exxon-Mobil, 9% of the world’s energy came from biofuels in 2017. They do not expect this percentage to increase by 2040, and it may go down. For the most part it is a developing world fuel. Primary biofuels include dung, wood, wood chips and pellets. Secondary, or manufactured biofuels include ethanol and biodiesel, which derive from several agricultural products, mainly corn, sugar cane, palm oil, soybeans and canola. The main advantage of using locally sourced wood and dung are their low cost and wide availability.

Using imported wood or wood chips for generating electricity, as is done in Europe, is more problematic. Due to the economic and environmental costs of farming the trees, making the wood pellets or chips and shipping them to the powerplants; wood is not a competitive fuel for most powerplants. The energy density is too low. However, if the source of the wood is within fifty miles of the plant, it can be competitive with coal and it may produce fewer greenhouse gases than coal, estimates vary. Ethanol and biodiesel are also more expensive than fossil fuels and must be subsidized to be competitive.

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Dead Malls: The Steady Decline of American Shopping Centers

By Competitive Enterprise Institute- Re-Blogged From Headline Wealth

The kind of American chain stores and retail formats that dominated the second half of the 20th century have fallen on hard times in the 21st, and commentary on this influential and dislocating trend has become a cottage industry unto itself. Amid coverage in the business press on topics like “the winners and losers of the retail apocalypse” and how “1 in 3 American malls are doomed,” there is even a vibrant and, to many, inexplicable cultural fascination with retail history and dead malls.

The question of how the United States ended up with so many large, enclosed suburban shopping centers built between 1960 and 2000 is an interesting one. Naturally, trends in urban planning and government housing policy played a role. We wouldn’t have had as many suburban malls—or as many suburbs—without the interstate highway system.

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U.S. Government Continues to Dump Funds Into an Electrical Sinkhole

By Ronald Stein – Re-Blogged From WUWT

Founder and Ambassador for Energy & Infrastructure of PTS Advance, headquartered in Irvine, California

When I read the WSJ article “The Best-Laid Energy Plans” about the Government planning and subsidies that were supposedly intended to make America the world’s green-electricity superpower, create millions of jobs, and supercharge the economy, it brings to mind the most terrifying nine words in the English language: ” I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.”

In pursuit of a way to store the daytime intermittent electricity from solar panels, for use when the sun is not shining, the reality is closer to the financial failure at Crescent Dunes, a Nevada solar-energy plant that went gone bust after receiving a $737 million federal loan guarantee. No worries. It’s only taxpayer money,

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Subsidizing The Epocalypse

By Willis Eschenbach – Re-Blogged From WUWT

I take as my subject for this post a claim made over at Forbes Magazine, viz:

I saw that and said “Whaaaa”? My urban legend detector light started flashing bright red at that claim that we’re on the primrose path to the epocalypse.

Me, I always want to go the actual study instead of the media interpretation. In this case, the underlying study is by the IMF, the International Monetary Fund. It uses a most unusual definition of “subsidy”. Normally, subsidies are divided into direct and indirect subsidies.

A direct subsidy is money given to a producer or consumer. It’s actual cash.

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