"Economists are pessimists: they've predicted 8 of the last 3 depressions."
--Barry Asmus

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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

What's Happening in the World?

It's a light day for economic data, so let's have a look at the news to get a sense of what might be moving the markets.
  • The People's Bank of China has announced that it is raising benchmark one-year deposit rates by 25 bps to 3.25% and one-year lending rates by 25 bps to 6.31%, effective April 6.  Speculation is that Chinese inflation, which was at 4.9% in January and February, may have risen again (although actual data won't be available until April 15).
  • Transocean, the company that operated the Deepwater Horizon, has declared that, "in recognition of the Company's achievement of the objectives set at the beginning of 2010 relating to the Company's safety record," cash performance awards will be made to the Named Executive Officers.  This is composed of 25% of base salary for Mr. Newman ($275,000), 18.75% of base salary for Mr. Rosa ($93,750), 16.25% of base salary for Mr. Brown ($81,250), 18.75% of base salary for Mr. Bobillier ($81,562.50), 18.75% of base salary for Mr. Toma ($81,562.50), and 15% of base salary for Ms. Richard ($53,250).
United States
[1]  No word on defense spending, which represents 17.94% of President Obama's proposed 2012 budget.  If you look just at items labeled "national defense".  If you include "defense-related expenditures", it goes to between 27.6% and 37.9% of the budget.

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