FROM Kevin Hall
Massive Leak Exposes How the World's Wealthiest Hide Money More than 100 news organizations are investigating a trove of leaked documents called the " Panama Papers ." The "Panama Papers" are 11.5 million documents leaked from Mossack Fonseca, a law firm in Panama that specializes in setting up offshore companies. That dwarfs previous leaks by Edward Snowden or Wikileaks and it has widespread international ramifications. The clients include the leaders of several countries and their close friends. The McClatchy Newspapers is among the agencies reporting the story. Kevin Hall is chief economics correspondent. Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson is among those said to be hiding cash Photo: Control Arms
Unemployment Falls Below 6 Percent, First Time in 6 Years Unemployment has dropped below 6% for the first time in six years, providing some substance to a claim President Obama made yesterday during a campaign-type speech in Illinois. In his speech, Obama asserted, "So it is indisputable that our economy is stronger today than it was when I took office." Kevin Hall is Chief Economics Correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers.
Three Days from Debt Ceiling Limit, Markets and Global Economies on Edge The prospect of an American default on Thursday has rattled the global economy. Kevin Hall is national economics correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers .
The President, Republicans and the Debt Ceiling To explain the debt ceiling dispute, the President today used a homely metaphor: eating out at a restaurant and not paying the bill… He accused Republicans of “playing chicken with the full faith and credit of the United States” and threatening to shut down the government. We explain the “debt ceiling” debate and its economic and political impacts.
Oil and Gas Boom Reshapes US Energy Landscape Turns out it was old news to energy experts, but this week's report from the International Energy Agency has a lot of others revising their thinking about the domestic production of oil and what it will mean for jobs and the economy. Until now, it's been conventional wisdom that Saudi Arabia would be the world's leading producer of oil until 2035. Now, the Agency says the US will surpass that country in just five years . America's boom in oil and natural gas is being compared to the tech boom of the 1990's, with the unexpected capacity to create new jobs and accelerate economic recovery. But it's already bad news for the environment and lifestyles in many places — and it could drastically set back efforts to cope with global warming.
America's Oil Boom: the Economy and the Environment When the President and Mitt Romney talked about "energy independence" during the recent campaign, it had the sound of an unattainable promise. Now the International Energy Agency says the US will surpass Saudi Arabia's oil production in just five years and be "all but energy self-sufficient" soon after. That means new jobs and economic growth, but renewable fuels and increased efficiency will also have to be part of the picture. If they're not, there could be drastic consequences for the environment and climate change.
Economic Growth Exceeds Expectations The Commerce Department today released one of the last important sources of economic data before the November election. It shows an increasing growth rate, with different degrees of optimism from consumers and business. Kevin Hall reports on economics for the McClatchy Newspapers .
Despite Down Economy, Corporate Profits Make Historic Gains After the worst recession since the Great Depression, and despite an agonizingly slow recovery, 2010 corporate profits grew by 36.8 percent, the biggest gain since 1950. Fast-growing profits would seem to contradict all the signs of an underperforming economy, especially an unemployment rate of 8.9 percent. The US Chamber of Commerce says it's all about "economic anomalies." Kevin Hall is National Economics Correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers .
'Inside Job' Oscar-winner and the Wall Street Meltdown Sunday's Oscar ceremonies were widely criticized as a snooze, but when Inside Job won for best documentary its director seized the moment. The film depicts the 2008 financial meltdown as a crime committed by greedy Wall Street bankers. Charles Ferguson told the Academy that "three years after a horrific financial crisis caused by massive fraud, not a financial executive has gone to jail – and that's wrong." Kevin Hall is national economics correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers.
Is What Wall Street Makes Worth What It Takes Wall Street is making money again and financial institutions could hit record profits, but the unemployment rate went up last month and businesses complain they can't get credit. Meanwhile, President Barak Obama yesterday cut a deal that will extend the Bush tax cuts for another two years. While it's hoped that the agreement will help stimulate the economy and job growth, there are plenty who say it misses the mark, that what is truly needed is a critical look at the workings of America's financial institutions. How can the financial sector be booming while the rest of the US economy remains sluggish? What roll does President Obama's extension of the Bush tax cuts play?
Wall Street's Disconnect with the American Economy Wall Street is making money again and financial institutions could hit record profits, but the unemployment rate went up last month and businesses complain they can't get credit. Meanwhile, President Barak Obama yesterday cut a deal that will extend the Bush tax cuts for another two years. While it's hoped that the agreement will help stimulate the economy and job growth, there are plenty who say it misses the mark, that what is truly needed is a critical look at the workings of America's financial institutions. How can the financial sector be booming while the rest of the US economy remains sluggish? What roll does President Obama's extension of the Bush tax cuts play?
Simpson-Bowles Offer Provocative Plan to Cut Deficit "It's time to lay it out on the table and let the American people start to chew on it," says former Republican Senator Alan Simpson, who co-chairs President Obama's bipartisan commission on reducing the national debt . Among the proposals are deep cuts in domestic and military spending, an increase in the gas tax, elimination of tax breaks, lower Social Security benefits and an increased retirement age. Kevin Hall is national economics correspondent with McClatchy Newspapers .
Congress Reaches Agreement on Financial Reform President Obama is in Toronto for the latest G-20 summit, and some members of Congress stayed up all night to give him a kind of departing gift. It's final approval of finance reform by a joint committee, and the President was glad to see it . Kevin Hall is national economics correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers .
Geithner Grilled by House Committee on AIG Bailout There was high political drama today as Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner faced a hostile committee of Congress, defending the bail out of Wall Street by both the Bush and Obama Administrations. Kevin Hall is national economics correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers .
Jobs Report Better than Expected After yesterday's job summit, President Obama went to a community college in Allentown, Pennsylvania today, where he announced unexpected good news, that job losses were 115,000 fewer than had been forecast. The unemployment rate fell from 10.2% last month to 10% this month. Kevin Hall is national economics correspondent for the McClatchy Newspapers .
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
Venezuela spirals into economic and political chaos Venezuela, a country whose potential for prosperity is unmatched, finds itself on the verge of civil war. What sustains the repressive government? With time running out, guest host León Krauze looks at what the international community can do to pull the country from the edge of collapse.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Janesville and the American Dream Janesville, Wisconsin is the hometown of Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan. But he couldn’t prevent the closing of the General Motors factory after 100 years. On this Memorial Day rebroadcast of To the Point, we hear what’s happened to what once was a model of American middle-class unity.