Politics Barack Obama

  • There’s a lot of loose talk on Wall Street right now about the risk of a double-dip recession. I’m not buying it.

  • S&P futures popped about 5 points as nonfarm payrolls came in slightly better than expected (loss of 36,000 jobs vs. loss of 68,000 expected). Greece is up for the fifth out of the last six days, despite protests in the streets. Premier Wen Jiabao of China pledged to crack down on property speculation. (Good luck on that.)

  • Retail sales: another positive on the corporate front...now we just need better macro news. Elsewhere, I have been asked repeatedly what's up with Goldman Sachs, up 3.3 percent on heavy volume..?

  • Barack Obama

    The message from President Obama’s health-care speech yesterday is game on — jam it through with virtually nothing for Republicans.

  • Greece will sell about 5 billion euros of 10 year bonds (at about a 6.3 percent yield) — it is well oversubscribed. They need to refinance up to 23 billion euros of maturing debt coming in the Apr/May time frame. 2. Retail sales for February have topped expectations. 3. Wal-Mart increased its dividend to $1.21 from $1.09 per year. Over 60 companies in the S&P 500 have increased their dividend since the start of the year. 4. A bankruptcy judge gave the management of General Growth Properties won a four month extension to keep control of the bankruptcy restructuring.

  • To paraphrase Winston Churchill, the US is the worst place to put your money – except for all the others.

  • Expectations very low for February, given the huge snowstorms in the Northeast. But analysts who actually bother to call around to the stores (there's still a few who do real research) are generally reporting that sales are a bit better than exepected.

  • Rush Limbaugh was pretty fired up about my interview earlier this week with Cato's Alan Reynolds.

  • Jim Bunning

    Sen. Jim Bunning was right all along. He was just trying to get the Senate to enforce its own pay-go budget rule and actually find $10 billion of spending cuts out of a $3.5 trillion budget to pay for extended unemployment benefits and other items in a catch-all spending bill.

  • President Barack Obama

    President Obama has high cholesterol. For now, his doctors are prescribing healthy living. But some say he should be put on a statin or cholesterol-lowering drug pronto.

  • Cost of healthcare

    President Obama’s new health-care push would apply the 2.9 percent health-care payroll tax to investments. We’ve never done this before. If we do, with the Bush tax cuts set to expire, the tax rate on capital gains and dividends could jack up over 50 percent.

  • It's Investor Day at the NYSE, stock up 1.8 percent, near a four month high. Richard Repetto from Sandler O'Neill, who is the best analyst in this space, told me that the stock was advancing on two pieces of information...

  • Greece is finally publishing a (somewhat) clear plan to reduce their deficit, half with tax hikes, half with spending cuts. Elsewhere: Mixed results from retailers, particularly the warehouse clubs.

  • Health Care Reform

    President Barack Obama is urging Congress to finally push through his massive health care overhaul, freshening it with a handful of Republican ideas in a gesture of bipartisanship but strongly signaling Democrats will go it alone.

  • Jim Bunning

    By maintaining a quixotic filibuster against a Senate jobless bill, Senator Jim Bunning lit the fire of Democratic and Republican hyperbole against him.

  • Americans on both the right and left are frustrated with Washington, and that's being reflected in recent polls and special elections, Jon Corzine, the former governor of New Jersey told CNBC  Wednesday.

  • Toyota's safety crisis may have cleared the way for U.S. automakers, but that is just an aside. The entire industry is poised for a strong recovery. And here are three reasons why

  • Cost of healthcare

    Obama planned to send a letter to Democratic congressional leaders later in the day detailing his plan and make a statement at the White House on Wednesday.

  • Government Regulation

    More than a year after Lehman Brothers' collapse set off a financial panic, Senate negotiators are laboring to seal a deal over a consumer protection dispute holding up broad legislation to establish new rules for Wall Street.

  • If you look to Congress, or the political class in general, leadership seems to be getting to where the crowd is already going and pretending you led them there.