The major stocks were falling again Friday, marking a three-day decline. As of 12 p.m.:
|DIJA: -0.15% to 14736.32||S&P 500: -0.33% to 1582.90||NASDAQ: -0.86% to 3335.70|
|Gold: -1.43% to 64.73||Oil: -2.00% to 21.56||U.S. 10-Year: +3.10% to 24.94|
Here are three stories helping driving the markets Friday afternoon.
1. Here’s Bullard’s Problem with the Fed Policy Statement: Inflation was a growing concern before Wednesday’s FOMC monetary policy announcement. On June 18, the preceding Tuesday, The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the consumer price index increased just 0.1 percent on the month in May, slightly below expectations. The core index, which strips out typically volatile food and energy prices, increased 0.2 percent. On the year, the the CPI-U index was up 1.4 percent, slight ahead of the 1.1 percent advance registered in April.
As Chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke put it a few weeks ago in a testimony before Congress, “if anything, [inflation] is a little bit too low.” This, it turns out, may have been understating it… (Read more.)
2. Madoff Still Hurting Investors From Behind Bars: Lucky for big banks, including JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) and HSBC (NYSE:HBC), they cannot be sued by the man responsible for liquidating the Bernard Madoff firm.
Irving Picard, the bankruptcy trustee in the Bernie Madoff case, appealed rulings barring him from demanding damages from the banks that allegedly overlooked Madoff’s fraud for the sake of fees. However, Manhattan Federal district judges Colleen McMahon and Jed Rakoff said that Picard could not accuse the banks of fraud because he is the trustee of a fraudulent enterprise, citing the legal principle pari delicto… (Read more.)
3. Will Young People Jeopardize the Success of Obamacare? When the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act was under debate in the Supreme Court last year, Justice Samuel Alito highlighted a problem with Obamacare that could ultimately jeopardize the entire viability of the system of insurance exchanges. He pointed out that young, healthy adults currently spend an average of $854 a year on healthcare. However, Obamacare would require them to purchase insurance policies expected to cost roughly $5,800. These added costs do not stem from additional “services that they are going to consume,” he stated. “The mandate is forcing these people to provide a huge subsidy to the insurance companies . . . to subsidize services that will be received by somebody else” …(Read more.)