The cent drops?

Indebted governments have been pressuring banks to buy more debt, not less. As banks have been increasing capital, they have loaded up even more on “risk-free” sovereign debt, which they can use as collateral for ECB loans. The big ECB “liquidity operation” that took place yesterday will give banks hundreds of billions of euros to increase their sovereign bets. Bank depositors and creditors have figured this out, and are running for the exits.By stuffing the banks with sovereign debt, European politicians and regulators are making the inevitable default much more financially dangerous. So much for the faith that regulation will keep banks safe.

via How Bad Ideas Worsen Europe’s Debt Meltdown: John H. Cochrane – Bloomberg.


“Some men see things as they are and say why – I dream things that never were and say why not.”

George Bernard Shaw


I’m not quite sure if anyone else is keeping a running score on all this, but by my calculation, what was going to be a leveraged 440bn euro EFSF turning into 1.3 trillion via Spiv investments, plus an additional 2o0 billion from the IMF (a grand total of 1.5trillion euros) now looks more like 600 billion….falling short by a mere 60%. Or, as a French credit manager put it this afternoon, “Nowhere near enough”.

So in brief, the heads-up is this: thanks to half-bankrupting itself  to buy junk bonds, the ECB doesn’t have enough for proper bank bailouts; all the banks that most need buffers have the smallest ones; and the EU itself has just two euros out of each five required to stop multiple defaults.

via EU CRISIS: The simple problem is, there’s nowhere near enough money. | The Slog.

Computer scientists answer the ultimate question: Where’s Waldo? | ExtremeTech

The solution, as posted by Stack Overflow user Heike, makes a mockery of our poorly-outfitted visual cortex. Using Mathematica, a mathematics-oriented programming environment developed by Wolfram of Wolfram Alpha fame, Heike uses five lines of code to: 1 Filter out all non-red pixels, 2 Search what’s left for a striped pattern, and finally 3 Draw a circle around pixels that have a sufficiently high correlation. Voila, There’s Waldo.

via Computer scientists answer the ultimate question: Where’s Waldo? | ExtremeTech.