Dark Days Ahead for Green Energy

Dark Days Ahead for Green Energy 

 Workers inspecting solar panels at an OptiSolar plant in California amid layoffs.

Wind and solar power have been growing at a blistering pace in recent years, and that growth seemed likely to accelerate under the green-minded Obama administration. But because of the credit crisis and the broader economic downturn, the opposite is happening: installation of wind and solar power is plummeting.

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China’s Massive $586 Billion Stimulus Plan

 China’s Massive $586 Billion Stimulus Plan

The world’s largest inflation cycle is about to begin

China on Sunday night announced an aggressive $586 billion economic stimulus package, the largest in the country’s history, at a time when it is struggling with increasing social unrest due to factory closings and rising unemployment.

In a wide-ranging plan that economists are comparing to the New Deal, the government said it would ease credit restrictions, expand social welfare services and launch an infrastructure spending program that would include the construction of new railways, roads and airports.

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Banks Choking Business Credit

Banks Choking Business Credit

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke would prefer to avoid another emergency

Banks struggling to recover from multibillion-dollar losses on real estate are curtailing loans to American businesses, depriving even healthy companies of money for expansion and hiring.

Two vital forms of credit used by companies — commercial and industrial loans from banks, and short-term “commercial paper” not backed by collateral — collectively dropped almost 3 percent over the last year, to $3.27 trillion from $3.36 trillion, according to Federal Reserve data. That is the largest annual decline since the credit tightening that began with the last recession, in 2001.

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Can’t Grasp Credit Crisis? Join the Club

Mortgage Credit Crisis

It has been going on for seven months now, and many people probably feel as if they should understand it. But they don’t, not really. The part about the housing crash seems simple enough. With banks whispering sweet encouragement, people bought homes they couldn’t afford, and now they are falling behind on their mortgages.

But the overwhelming majority of homeowners are doing just fine. So how is it that a mess concentrated in one part of the mortgage business — subprime loans — has frozen the credit markets, sent stock markets gyrating, caused the collapse of Bear Stearns, left the economy on the brink of the worst recession in a generation and forced the Federal Reserve to take its boldest action since the Depression?

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Identity Theft Rates Among Top Banks

Identity Theft Rates Among Top Banks

Consumers, regulators, and businesses lack objective tools to compare the incidence of identity theft across financial institutions and without such tools, consumers cannot ‘vote with their feet’ and choose safer institutions.

Now a study by Chris Hoofnagle has analyzed 88,000 complaints submitted by victims to the FTC over a three month period in 2006 and found that Bank of America ranked highest of all firms in the study, with an average of 1,117 incidents over a three-month period. Revealing graphs after the jump.

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