Spain: stocks soar, pressure on bonds down - The Guardian Spain: stocks soar, pressure on bonds down - The Guardian

Monday, June 11, 2012

Spain: stocks soar, pressure on bonds down - The Guardian

Spain: stocks soar, pressure on bonds down - The Guardian

MADRID (AP) — Spanish stocks are rising strongly and the interest rates on its bonds are down sharply in the first day of trading since the Spanish bailout was announced.

The Ibex-35 stock index was up almost 5 percent shortly after opening. Bank stocks rose strongly. Shares in Bankia, which had requested €19 billion in aid to cover its bad loans and assets, rose 16 percent. The yield on 10-year bonds was down 17 basis points to about 6 percent.

Eurozone finance ministers said Saturday they would make up to €100 billion ($125 billion) available to the Spanish government to prop up banks laden with non-performing loans and other toxic assets after the collapse of a real estate bubble. Spain has yet to say how much of this money it will tap.

Business optimism improves but only for short-term -

Monday, 11 June 2012 09:36

By Ben Salisbury

Business services firm BDO has conducted a survey of UK businesses that reveals short-term business confidence levels are at a 12-month high.

The survey was conducted by the Centre for Economic and Business Research (CEBR) on behalf of BDO and concludes that longer-term growth prospects are at risk from the European debt crisis.

BDO’s output index using business surveys compiled by around 11,000 respondents. The index increased to 96.7 in May from 95.8 in April. A reading above 95 indicates expansion.

Peter Hemington, Partner, BDO LLP commented: “Given that half the UK’s export goods go to the eurozone, it’s hardly surprising that the ongoing turbulence there is denting longer-term growth prospects here.

“The biggest issue for UK businesses at the moment is that the strength of the pound against the euro has made UK exports much more expensive, significantly denting export and growth prospects."

BDO’s Optimism Index fell for the third consecutive month, down from a high of 98.0 in February to 95.5 in May.

The data indicates that the UK should see economic growth from mid-2012, though the Optimism Index points to that growth being short-lived.

Mr Hemington said: "It's clear that UK business people are worried by the eurozone crisis and are scaling back plans for hiring and investing. This massively threatens the already fragile growth prospects for the economy.

"The Government's plans to shrink current spending by the State remain a necessity, but a fantastic opportunity is being missed to build high quality infrastructure cheaply, taking advantage of the very low borrowing rates that the Government can source currently."

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Stocks close 1.96% higher on Spain bank bailout - Japan Today

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Stocks closed up 1.96% on Monday, tracking a broad regional rally driven by the eurozone’s decision to lend Spain up to 100 billion euros ($125 billion) to rescue its banking system. The Nikkei 225 index at the Tokyo Stock Exchange added 165.64 points to ...

US Stocks Decline as Spain Bank Bailout Gets Critical Eye - 4-traders (press release)
06/11/2012 | 10:55am

--Stocks erase initial gains after Spain's request for bailout funds

--Europe off highs but remain broadly higher, with Spain leading gains

--Asia markets start overseas rally with sharp gains

      By Matt Jarzemsky   

NEW YORK--U.S. stocks erased initial gains within an hour of the opening bell, as investors took a critical look at Spain's weekend agreement to seek bailout funds for its banks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 14 points, or 0.1%, to 12540 in mid-morning trade. The blue-chip average had risen as much as 96 points minutes after U.S. markets opened.

The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index eased one point, or 0.1%, to 1325. Materials shares led declines across seven of the index's 10 sectors. The Nasdaq Composite fell six points, or 0.2%, to 2852.

"I think the market had sort of assumed that Spain was going to capitulate, because it really had no alternative," said Ben Halliburton, managing director at Tradition Capital Management in Summit, N.J. "It doesn't really solve any of the problems; it just pushes back the day of reckoning."

Over the weekend, Spain agreed to a bailout of up to EUR100 billion ($125 billion) in loans from the European Union to assist its banks. European stock markets' initial rallies eroded Monday as investors questioned the implications of the deal. The Stoxx Europe 600 was up 0.6% after trading as much as 1.9% higher. Spain's IBEX-35 saw a 5.9% rally cut to a gain of 0.7%.

Asian markets rallied amid the Spain news and Chinese economic data that were not as bad as some expected, with Japan's Nikkei Stock Average rising 2% and China's Shanghai Composite gaining 1.1%.

In the corporate arena, IntegraMed America rallied 21% after the health-care management company said it was being acquired by Sagard Capital Partners in a $169.5 million deal.

Centene tumbled 26%. The Medicaid insurer lowered its 2012 earnings outlook.

Forest Laboratories eased 2% after lowering its current-year earnings forecast, saying it was hit harder than expected after its depression treatment Lexapro lost patent protection in March.

Diamond Foods dropped 6.8%. The snack maker said it won't meet a deadline to file its delayed quarterly reports and expects to get a delisting warning from the Nasdaq Stock Market, the latest fallout from accounting irregularities unveiled last year. The accounting problems led to the firing of top executives in February and the nixing of its planned purchase of Pringles from Procter & Gamble.

EnergySolutions shed 55% after the provider of nuclear-power services such as plant decommissioning lowered its outlook, citing a slowdown in government and commercial businesses.

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US STOCKS-Futures imply moderate rise on Spain; worries loom - Reuters India

Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.

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Business First Top Elementary schools - WKBW-TV
June 11, 2012 Updated Jun 11, 2012 at 8:50 AM EDT

There has been a changing of the guard in Business First's academic rankings of Western New York's elementary schools.

Clarence's Ledgeview Elementary School has attained first place, making its first appearance at the top of the regional standings. Principal Keith Kuwik says a wide range of people deserve credit.

"Our teachers are phenomenal," he says. "The time they put in is incredible. That, in and of itself, makes a huge difference. And the community is very involved, very supportive."

Full details will be available in Business First's 2012-2013 Guide to Western New York Schools, which hits newsstands on Friday. Highlights are also available right now (Monday) at the newspaper's website:

Ledgeview has hovered close to first place ever since Business First's separate rankings of public and private elementary schools were consolidated in 2007. It finished eighth that year, then bounced from fourth to sixth to
fifth on the three subsequent lists. It climbed to second place a year ago.

Business First graded 278 elementary schools in the eight counties of Western New York, based on four years of test data from the New York State Education Department.

The rankings cover every school that participates in the statewide testing program for fourth graders. (The threshold will drop to third graders in 2013.)

Ledgeview's strength in core subjects enabled it to reach the No. 1 position overall:

-- It's the region's top-performing elementary school in mathematics, according to Business First's breakdown of standardized test data from 2008 to 2011.

-- It was one of just two Western New York schools where more than 30 percent of third graders and 60 percent of fourth graders achieved superior scores on 2011's statewide math tests. The other was Elmwood Village Charter School of Buffalo. (Superior is defined as a Level 4 score on any elementary school test.)

-- And Ledgeview ranks fifth among all 278 schools in English. Nardin Academy Elementary School of Buffalo holds first place in that subject.

Kuwik says proficiency in English (commonly known to educators as English language arts or ELA) is the key to success in the early grades. Students who develop solid communication skills, he says, will blossom in other
subjects as well.

-- ELA affects math. It affects everything," says Kuwik. "There is so much reading and writing on every test, even in math. It all comes back to English."

Second place on this year's list belongs to St. Gregory the Great School, a Catholic school in the Williamsville district. It has been surging upward in recent years, rising from 12th place in 2010 to sixth a year ago and now to the runner-up position.

Principal Patricia Freund says St. Gregory is making a determined effort to elevate its test results in both core subjects. It currently ranks second among all elementary schools in math, sixth in English.

"We consistently use test scores to drive our instruction," says Freund. "If we note a deficit area in the test results, we specifically address that problem without taking away from the other aspects of our curriculum."

The No. 1 elementary school the past two years, Southern Tier Catholic School of Olean, drops slightly to third place this year.

Southern Tier Catholic was the first school outside of Erie County to hold first place in any category of Business First's rankings -- and it remains the sole elementary school from the seven outlying counties to qualify for
the top 10.

"Our faculty is fantastic," says Tom McGlinn, the new principal at Southern Tier Catholic. "They come in early, they work through lunch, they stay late. It's all about helping kids succeed, and it shows in the test scores."

Rounding out the top five are Country Parkway Elementary School of Williamsville and Christ the King School of Amherst.

Forty-two schools are recipients of subject awards, which are given to the top 10 percent of all Western New York elementary schools in English or math. Twenty-eight honorees have earned a single award, while 14 have
reached the elite level in both subjects.

Among the double winners are all of the top 10 schools in the overall standings, including Orchard Park's South Davis Elementary School, which is 10th.

"One of the best things I can say about education in Orchard Park -- and it doesn't matter which elementary school I'm talking about -- is that we have a sound team approach," says Christine Rassow, the principal at South Davis. "We have outstanding teachers, instructional leaders who truly excel and an administrative team that works together."

Private schools that don't take part in the statewide testing program are not included in Business First's rankings, since their performances can't be assessed objectively. Two of the better-known elementary schools that don't participate are Elmwood Franklin School and Park School of Buffalo.

***** ***** ***** ***** ***** *****


1. Ledgeview ES (Clarence)
2. St. Gregory the Great School (Williamsville)
3. Southern Tier Catholic School (Olean)
4. Country Parkway ES (Williamsville)
5. Christ the King School (Amherst)
6. Nardin Academy ES (Buffalo)
7. Maple East ES (Williamsville)
8. St. John Vianney School (Orchard Park)
9. Smallwood Drive School (Amherst)
10. South Davis ES (Orchard Park)
11. Sherman ES (Sherman)
12. Elmwood Village CS (Buffalo)
13. Sheridan Hill ES (Clarence)
14. Christian Central Academy (Williamsville)
15. Maple West ES (Williamsville)
16. Charlotte Avenue ES (Hamburg)
17. P.S. 64 Frederick Law Olmsted (Buffalo)
18. Eggert Road ES (Orchard Park)
19. Charles A. Lindbergh ES (Kenmore-Tonawanda)
20. Big Tree ES (Frontier)
21. Tapestry CS (Buffalo)
22. Our Lady of Pompeii School (Lancaster)
23. Ellicottville ES (Ellicottville)
24. Harris Hill ES (Clarence)
25. St. Peter & Paul School (Williamsville)
26. St. Christopher's School (Sweet Home)
27. Heim ES (Williamsville)
28. Parkdale ES (East Aurora)
29. East ES (West Seneca)
30. St. Stephen School (Grand Island)
31. Forest ES (Williamsville)
32. St. Leo the Great School (Sweet Home)
33. St. Mary's School (Williamsville)
34. St. Aloysius Regional School (Springville-Griffith Institute)
35. West ES (West Seneca)
36. Ellicott Road ES (Orchard Park)
37. St. Peter's Lutheran School (Niagara-Wheatfield)
38. St. Mary's ES (Lancaster)
39. Errick Road ES (Niagara-Wheatfield)
40. Sheldon ES (Attica)
41. St. John Lutheran School (Niagara-Wheatfield)
42. Southtowns Catholic School (Frontier)
43. Dodge ES (Williamsville)
44. Prospect ES (Attica)
45. Pinehurst ES (Frontier)
46. St. Bernadette School (Orchard Park)
47. Armor ES (Hamburg)
48. St. Vincent DePaul School (Iroquois)
49. Byron-Bergen ES (Byron-Bergen)
50. Clinton ES (West Seneca)
51. Holy Ghost Lutheran School (Niagara-Wheatfield)
52. Holy Family School (LeRoy)
53. Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary School (Clarence)
54. Alfred-Almond ES (Alfred-Almond)
55. Allendale ES (West Seneca)
56. Immaculate Conception School (East Aurora)
57. Kaegebein School (Grand Island)
58. Mullen ES (Tonawanda)
59. Clarence Center ES (Clarence)
60. Fletcher ES (Tonawanda)
61. Nativity of Our Lord School (Orchard Park)
62. St. Peter School (Lewiston-Porter)
63. Union Pleasant ES (Hamburg)
64. Pembroke IS (Pembroke)
65. Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament School (Lancaster)
66. Starpoint IS (Starpoint)
67. Immaculate Conception School (Wellsville)
68. Cayuga Heights ES (Depew)
69. St. Mark's School (Buffalo)
70. St. Benedict's School (Amherst)
71. William Street School (Lancaster)
72. Huth Road School (Grand Island)
73. Alexander ES (Alexander)
74. St. Andrew's Country Day School (Kenmore-Tonawanda)
75. Maplemere ES (Sweet Home)
76. St. Peter & Paul School (Hamburg)
77. Winchester ES (West Seneca)
78. Eden ES (Eden)

79. St. Francis of Assisi School (Tonawanda)
80. Iroquois IS (Iroquois)
81. Colden ES (Springville-Griffith Institute)
82. Alden PS (Alden)
83. Kadimah School of Buffalo (Amherst)
84. Thomas Marks ES (Wilson)
85. Southwestern ES (Southwestern)
86. P.S. 67 Discovery School (Buffalo)
87. Geraldine J. Mann School (Niagara Falls)
88. Queen of Heaven School (West Seneca)
89. Pratt ES (Barker)
90. Windom ES (Orchard Park)
91. Willow Ridge ES (Sweet Home)
92. Alexander Hamilton ES (Kenmore-Tonawanda)
93. Herbert Hoover ES (Kenmore-Tonawanda)
94. Meadow School (North Tonawanda)
95. Perry ES (Perry)
96. Maple Avenue School (Niagara Falls)
97. Northwood ES (West Seneca)
98. Wolcott Street School (LeRoy)
99. Notre Dame Academy (Buffalo)
100. Anna Merritt ES (Lockport)

ABBREVIATIONS: CS-Charter School, EMS-Elementary-Middle School,

ES-Elementary School, HS-High School, IS-Intermediate School, JHS-Junior
High School, JSHS-Junior-Senior High School, MHS-Middle-High School,
MS-Middle School, PS-Primary School, SHS-Senior High School, VHS-Vocational
High School.

Financial Crisis Triggered by Maniacs, Literally - Softpedia
Most of the actors involved in the events that culminated with the 2008 global financial crisis – bankers, politicians and economists – displayed signs of maniac behavior, investigators in the United Kingdom say. The indicators were there for anyone who was looking.

The behavior these people exhibited was comparable to that of psychologically disturbed individuals, says award-winning scholar Dr. Mark Stein, from the University of Leicester School of Management.

According to the expert, there is currently no safeguard in place to ensure that a similar crisis will not happen again. His analysis lists the main causes and indicators of the crisis, as well as a description of the actions taken by those in a position of power.

Stein says that a “shared manic culture” existed in the years leading up to the 2008 economic crisis, which was not addressed by anyone. In fact, it was promoted and allowed to continue, and everyone gladly joined in, PsychCentral reports.

Those who could have done something about it entered an extremely deep denial mode, which then pushed them to engage in risky and dangerous financial practices, insuring and lending without analyzing the implications of their decisions. Details of the study appear in the journal Organization.

“Unless the manic nature of the response in the run up to 2008 is recognized, the same economic disaster could happen again,” Stein says. He lists the four main characteristics of the manic culture as denial, overactivity, triumphalism and omnipotence.

“A series of major ruptures in capitalist economies were observed and noted by those in positions of economic and political leadership in Western societies,” the investigator explains.

“These ruptures caused considerable anxiety among these leaders, but rather than heeding the lessons, they responded by manic, omnipotent and triumphant attempts to prove the superiority of their economies,” he goes on to say.

One of the manic responses to the developing crisis was the removal of regulatory safety checks within the banking system, a massive increase in credit derivative deals, and industrializing credit default swaps.

Stein has been analyzing group dynamics from a psychoanalytic perspective for many years, and he says that similar behaviors can be observed (in hindsight) before most of the world's major financial crash events.

“Witnessing the collapse of Communism, those in power in the West developed the deluded idea that capitalist economies would do best if they eschew any resemblance to those Communist economies, thereby justifying unfettered financial liberalization and the destruction of the regulatory apparatuses of capitalism,” Stein adds.

“The consequences of this manic response have been catastrophic, with the ongoing Eurozone crisis being – in many ways – a result of this,” he concludes.

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