September 29, 2013 |
News came last month that the Obama administration, following the lead of British Prime Minister David Cameron and his government's so-called Nudge Unit, is recruiting behavioral scientists to help shape regulatory policy. Nudges are ways of offering choices that make people more likely to choose a particular option but preserve their ability to make a different choice. This usage of "nudge" was coined in 2008 by economist Richard Thaler and legal scholar Cass Sunstein, but the concept was first studied more than a decade ago by economist Brigitte Madrian and insurance executive Dennis Shea.
September 27, 2013
Re "Debt ceiling baloney," Editorial, Sept. 25 During the two terms of President George W. Bush's administration, Republicans voted seven times to raise the U.S. debt limit without demanding any cuts in federal spending. Now, GOP lawmakers should continue this responsible tradition that was endorsed by their last president. In 1983, President Reagan issued this warning to Senate Majority Leader Howard H. Baker Jr. (R-Tenn.): "The full consequences of a default by the United States - or even the serious prospect of a default - by the United States are impossible to predict and awesome to contemplate.
August 23, 2013 |
Argentina's long slugfest with Wall Street over its sovereign debt default - the largest ever - has left the South American nation unbowed after losing another round in U.S. courts. A federal appeals court ruled Friday that Argentina must pay a group of bond investors more than $1.3 billion, the full amount of principal and interest, if it wants to continue making discounted payments that other creditors have agreed to accept. Argentina has publicly vowed to never pay face value on those notes, so the unanimous decision by the three-judge panel of the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals could force a default on the country's other debts.
August 9, 2013 |
On a recent doctor's visit, a compelling health video was looping in the reception room. It incorporated many of the accepted rules for achieving a healthy weight. The motivational video, tailored to the doctor's clientele, illustrated simple ways to eat more fruits and vegetables and get exercise. It was striking, however, that many of the nursing staff, who must have heard this video a thousand times, didn't seem to have taken it to heart. Nurses, as a national study revealed, are just as likely to overeat as the rest of the population.
August 1, 2013 |
Facebook said secure browsing is now a default option for all users, making it safer for them to connect to the 1-billion member social network. Now, all users will see "https" instead of "http" at the front of the Web address when they go to Facebook on their browsers. Using HTTPS, which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, directs users' browsers to a secure connection, Facebook said in a blog post announcing the change. Using HTTPS encrypts data transferred between your device and the website you are connecting to. That makes it harder for anyone to intercept or make sense of what you are sending or receiving.
July 23, 2013 |
New California foreclosure filings rose considerably in the first quarter over the second but were still down 53% from the same period a year prior and held to their second-lowest level in seven years. Notices of default shot up 39% in the second quarter, according to a report by the real estate firm DataQuick. Lenders filed 25,747 notices of default during the three-month period that ended June 30. Nevertheless, it was the lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2005. The big increase came after notices of default plunged during the early months of 2013 after the so-called “Homeowner Bill of Rights” went into effect.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 4, 2013 |
Without a proposed $2.2-billion bond sale to refinance its debt, a major Orange County tollway could eventually default on its bond payments, according to a report released Wednesday. The analysis by the state treasurer's office supports plans by the Transportation Corridor Agencies to restructure the debt at lower interest on the Foothill-Eastern toll road, which is failing to live up to ridership and revenue projections. "We are pleased with the outcome of the study," said Lisa Telles, communications director for the corridor agency.
June 26, 2013 |
Argentina asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn an appeals court ruling that could force it to pay certain creditors more than $1.3 billion in a drawn-out fight over the country's 2001 default on sovereign debt. The South American nation's appeal, filed Monday, stems from its failure to pay on $100 billion in bonds, the largest default in history. It was eventually able to restructure more than 92% of that debt, exchanging the bonds for ones that were worth about two-thirds less.
June 22, 2013 |
Cable news channels regularly stoke their viewers' fears about China holding $1.1 trillion of U.S. debt. But they're focused on the wrong $1.1 trillion of loans. The borrowers of this other $1.1-trillion debt are far more likely to default on their obligations: students, particularly those who went to for-profit colleges. The global consequences could be - and likely will be - staggering. More than 38 million Americans have student loans outstanding. To put this in perspective, 38 million is the combined population of New York and Florida.