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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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The market ‘bubble’ you’ve never heard of

Category : Business, Stocks

Some economists are worried that farmland prices are nearing bubble territory. How bad can it be if no one’s heard of it?

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MBIA soars 45% on reports of BofA settlement

Category : Stocks

MBIA to get $1.6 billion in cash from Bank of America to settle dispute over who is responsible for losses on mortgage securities after housing bubble burst.

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Dr. Doom: Buy stocks while you still can

Category : Business, Stocks

Economist Nouriel Roubini thinks there’s a big crash and depression coming, but investors can ride this bubble higher for the next two years.

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Jeremy Grantham, environmental philanthropist: ‘We’re trying to buy time for the world to wake up’

Category : Business

You’ve probably never heard of him, and for years Jeremy Grantham liked it that way. But now the man who made billions by predicting every recent financial crisis is speaking out

One icy morning in February, a train pulled into Washington DC. It was loaded with environmentalists planning to handcuff themselves to the gates of the White House, in protest at the building of a 3,500km oil pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. Amid the hundreds of placard-carrying protesters stood a somewhat incongruous figure in a suit – Jeremy Grantham, a 74-year-old fund manager. “What we are trying to do is buy time,” he told reporters. “Buy time for the world to wake up.”

Grantham – who occupies a legendary place in the world of finance for predicting all the major stock market bubbles of recent decades (and doing very well in the process) – had decided, after 15 years of low-key environmental philanthropy, to, as he puts it, “walk the walk”.

“I was committed to getting arrested,” says Grantham, a tall, slight man, as he looks out across the City from his

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Confused about Bitcoin? It’s ‘the Harlem Shake of currency’ | Heidi Moore

Category : Business

Despite the hype, Bitcoin is used by very few people. It is not a legitimate currency just because it had a bubble

An obscure digital currency – used mostly for running drugs and laundering money for dictators – suffered a sudden crash on Wednesday, causing a minor sensation mostly among financial journalists and pundits.

Bitcoin is a currency created years ago by an obscure hacker in the spirit of subversion, to trade goods while dodging the gimlet eye of financial regulators. While theoretically it can be used for respectable online purchases, it is too complicated to buy and maintain for people who aren’t online 18 hours a day, so it is used primarily to fuel a shadow economy of vice. It has boomed in value. You can barely throw a rock without finding some pundit opining on how “Bitcoin is the new gold” or how Bitcoin will undercut the modern financial system. Maybe someday, but no time soon.

Bitcoin doesn’t work like other currencies. For one thing, it’s less like a currency, which are theoretically infinite in number, and more like a commodity, which are limited. No one will print more Bitcoins, for instance. There are currently 10.8m and they’ll cap out in 2140. A network of tech-savvy programmers – okay, call them hackers – work on secret algorithms to create and release Bitcoins at their own discretion. Bitcoins are anonymously bought and traded. They have no regulator and no accountability. They’re designed to be the favored by people who want to do things on the internet without getting caught.

They’re also not easy to obtain. In a piece for the Guardian last month, Arwa Mahdawi explained how bitcoins work:

“If you want to buy Bitcoins you simply go to an online exchange service such as Bitinstant and convert your local currency into the virtual money. These are then stored in a ‘wallet,’ which functions as a sort of online bank account. You can then go and spend these anywhere that takes Bitcoins to buy anything from socks to drugs.”

This doesn’t sound very special, and it isn’t, except that Bitcoin had the fortune to create a mini-crisis. Bitwallet, the online bank account service for bitcoins, was hacked today. Even though this seemed to spur a crash in bitcoins – they went from a high of $147 to a low of $108 today – this hacking may prove to be a benefit. A crash has done untold benefit to ramp up Bitcoin’s reputation. A crash means that Bitcoin has finally arrived. Now it is just like respectable currencies.

For a financial punditocracy starved by years without a proper bubble to bemoan, Bitcoin’s timing was impeccable if the goal was to look important. A month ago, Bitcoin was worth a modest $32 a share. When Cyprus started suffering its financial crisis, the ample riches sitting in the country for money-laundering purposes found their way to Bitcoin, according to a theory by ConvergEx strategist Nicholas Colas.

There are still only around $800m of Bitcoins in circulation, a tiny amount in a world economy that moves in trillions, and nothing like any serious currency. It is Bitcoin’s sudden, enormous increase in value makes it worthy of attention. Bitcoin is a bubble. It can ask for no better advertisement to be taken seriously. Paradoxically, the path to legitimacy is paved by hype.

There is ample commentary to this effect. Alan Safahi, the CEO of a cash payment processor that deals with Bitcoins, lamented that the currency is in a “bubble”. Art Cashin, a grizzled veteran of the New York Stock Exchange trading floor, just compared Bitcoin to the infamous Dutch tulip bubble, one of the standard comparisons for any serious modern financial crisis. From tech stocks to mortgage-backed securities, the tulip-bubble comparison is the language of financial crisis.

Bitcoin, known to very few people, used by very few people, is now in heady company, taking its place alongside other once-afflicted currencies like the Russian ruble or the Argentinian peso. Bitcoin, while it was functioning quietly, was boring. Now that it’s crashing, it has taken on an air of tragic glamor.

Is it only matter of time before we find out about sub-prime Bitcoin lending or Bitcoin consumer abuses? Features will abound on poverty and Bitcoin, how Bitcoin oppresses inner-city development, and how Bitcoin will raise food prices. Senate investigations into Bitcoin will follow. Hacker heads will surely roll.

Of course, in a rational world, none of that will be written, except perhaps as satire. Bitcoin’s crash is less of a currency crisis than an opportune moment for internet wisecracks. Kevin Roose, a New York Magazine journalist who says he bought one Bitcoin at $133, jokingly lamented his impending bankruptcy.

Nothing like a Bitcoin crash to teach you who your real friends are.

— Kevin Roose (@kevinroose) April 3, 2013

The best comment of the day was also the one that put Bitcoin in its proper place: as an internet meme. “Bitcoin,” opined journalist Micheline Maynard today, “is the Harlem Shake of currency.”

Bernanke: There is no stock bubble

Category : Stocks

Stocks have recently been hovering near a five-year high, but Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke says a stock market bubble is not in the works.

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How banks could get blown away by bond bubble

Category : Stocks

A Federal Reserve governor is publicly raising concerns about a bond bubble, and he thinks banks could take a big hit.

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Next big opportunity: Bond bubble bursting

Category : Business

It’s going to be tough to call, but three of the world’s biggest investors agree that the next big money-making opportunity will be when interest rates rise from their historic lows and the bond bubble bursts.

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Municipal bonds: A train wreck waiting to happen

Category : Business, Stocks

Beware of munis priced at bubble levels. They’ll always pop in the end.

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Anglo Irish suing Ernst & Young

Category : Business, World News

Anglo Irish Bank is suing its former auditor Ernst & Young for failing to spot the lender’s massive exposure to the Irish property bubble.

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