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  Tuesday, 22 Mar 2011 | 2:00 PM ET

For ETFs, Flows Into Japan Could Be an Ominous Sign

Posted By: Jeff Cox
Shares in Tokyo dropped following the deadly March 11 earthquake and tsunami
Yoshikazu Tsuno | AFP | Getty Images
Shares in Tokyo dropped following the deadly March 11 earthquake and tsunami

That sound of pounding hooves you’ve been hearing is of investors entering Japan, not leaving the disaster-ravaged country, which has become an unlikely darling for fund money.

Inflows into Japan ETFs since an earthquake and tsunami ravaged the nation have confounded market strategists and generated as many cautions as buy signals.

» Read More
  Tuesday, 22 Mar 2011 | 12:40 PM ET

The Mystery of Consumer Confidence

Posted By: John Carney
retail sales
Steven Puetzer | Getty Images
retail sales

The preliminary estimate of the University of Michigan consumer confidence index unexpected dropped in March to the lowest level since last October. The headline index dropped from 77.5 to 68.2. But by far the worse drop was in the expectations of the future, which plunged from 58.3 to 71.6.

So what does plunging consumer confidence in the future mean for businesses, investors and consumers?

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  Tuesday, 22 Mar 2011 | 9:58 AM ET

Munis: Not Unbreakable Bonds at All

Posted By: John Carney
american_flag_snow_200.jpg
Photo by: John Carney

Municipal-bond prices fell Monday as we entered into one of the largest issuance weeks this year. The weakness in the face of increased supply may indicate that there is still a lot of nervousness about the muni market.

Note that, on a historical basis, the supply isn’t all that large.

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  Tuesday, 22 Mar 2011 | 9:37 AM ET

If You Need a New Car You Better Buy One Now

Posted By: Julia La Roche
A morning roundup of today's headlines. »Read more
  Monday, 21 Mar 2011 | 4:24 PM ET

AT&T / T-Mobile Merger Faces Anti-Trust Scrutiny

Posted By: Ash Bennington
  Monday, 21 Mar 2011 | 3:47 PM ET

How to Think About JPMorgan's $20 Billion AT&T Loan

Posted By: John Carney
JPMorgan3_new.jpg
Getty Images

The $20 billion loan JPMorgan Chase is providing to AT&T to finance the $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA has raised a lot of eyebrows on Wall Street.

Assuming the deal gets the necessary regulatory approval, it will be the largest single-bank takeover financing in history. Although there have been bigger financings in the past, these are typically handled by a syndicate of banks operating together.

» Read More
  Monday, 21 Mar 2011 | 2:56 PM ET

Consumers Vs. Businesses Square Off on Economy

Posted By: John Carney
shopping_new07.jpg
AP

The dismal home sales numbers released Monday morning are the latest to illustrate a developing disconnect between consumer sentiment and behavior, on the one hand, and between business plans, on the other.

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  Monday, 21 Mar 2011 | 2:02 PM ET

Treasury's Mortgage Debt Sale Comes at Tough Time for Housing

Posted By: Jeff Cox

The Treasury Department’s move to start unloading its portfolio of mortgage debt likely will add one more point of pressure—albeit a small one—to a housing market hardly in a position for additional stress.

Foreclosure
Fuse | Getty Images
Foreclosure

Later this month the government plans to shed about $10 billion in its $142 billion portfolio of mortgage-backed securities that were guaranteed by government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The sales then will happen incrementally over the next year or so.

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  Monday, 21 Mar 2011 | 1:22 PM ET

High Frequency Trading: Can Any Stock Replace Citigroup?

Posted By: Lori Spechler
Citigroup Building
Getty Images
Citigroup Building

Can any stock replace Citigroup at the top of the volume ticker?

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  Monday, 21 Mar 2011 | 11:36 AM ET

Got Plans for the Next 25,000 Years?

Posted By: Ash Bennington
hazardous_waste_200.jpg
Thinkstock Images | Getty Images

It turns out that nuclear waste has more in common with the financial world than being a metaphor for the worst of its toxic assets.

Nuclear waste—some of which remains disastrously radioactive for 100,000 years—turns out to be the ultimate tail risk.

» Read More

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