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ECONOMICS – FINANCE – WORLD NEWS – GREEK DEBT

Occupy Davos

Angela Merkel gave the opening keynote of the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in pretty Davos yesterday. In her speech, she advocated the European fiscal pact (cap on budget deficits) and the importance of [Europe’s] competitiveness besides the whole cohesion business. She also took a passive swing at the likes of S&P [but also the IMF], saying that Europe [and Germany in particular] tried to live up to demands regarding the bailout funds, but whatever was agreed on on one day, would be torn apart on the next. The German Handelsblatt criticized everything about the speech in this morning’s paper, using arguments that were not very well formulated either. George Soros, grandpa-financier (legit to say, he’s 81), who was quoted in many articles discussing the keynote, said that structural reforms in Europe will not be enough, stressing the need for eurobonds, which Merkel [still] doesn’t support. This tweet summarizes it pretty well.

But the question of everyone’s minds: Is it okay to talk about income inequality if you’re a billionaire? read article

Maybe we should just choose one financial institution to blame for capitalism’s poor street cred: Bank of Americaread article [alternative caption: dysfunctional panels in Davos]

And more from Bank of America, this time related to its definition of ‘cash’, as in ‘cash bonus’. Dealbreaker comments on BoA’s stock bonuses saying it’s either a PR thing or a back-door capital raising thing. read article

Greece update: a new proposal for a coupon rate of 3.8% conditional upon the participation of the European Central Bank, which is unwilling to deviate from its current coupon of up to 7%. Hat tip Zero Hedge. read article

In other news, Nokia sold 20 million smartphones in Q4. Three words: 37 million iPhones.

So long.

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