Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Information overload

Sorry about the lack of posting but I assume everyone is staying up to date with the latest news in Japan. Last Friday I was concerned that things weren't as controlled at the Fukushima plants as we were being led to believe. Unfortunately, that turns out to be the right analysis and the tragedy in Japan continues to unfold in unbelievable ways.

I'll note that this is the second straight global story where Al-Jazeera - yes, that Al-Jazeera - has had more timely and accurate information than any western news organization. I could understand AJE beating the BBC to a story in Libya but getting the scoop in Japan is very impressive. How long before one of our major cable providers adds AJE to the cable package?

Other items around the world that would probably dominate the headlines any other day

* Remember the European debt crisis? It seems trivial by comparison to the news flow of late, but Portugal is the latest country to step forward and say "we don't need no stinkin' bailout, but if you're offering we'd take it."

* Qaddafi seems to have won for now. His violent and aggressive suppression of the rebellion seems to be the model across the MidEast right now (see Bahrain). Oh, and 4 NY Times reporters are missing in Libya.

* The S&P 500 is now down for the year and the Dow and NASDAQ are one bad day from being in the red. Also, while we talk about a 2 year rally in stocks the reality is that we're now essentially flat since April 2010 despite kicking $400 Bil+ into the system via Fed actions. Does this set the stage for QE3? Two weeks ago, I said no way, but all bets are off now.

* Apple was downgraded by an analyst who may have to enter witness protection :)

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