U.N. PANEL DOWNGRADES DOLLAR

March 27, 2009 at 10:53 pm | Posted in Economics, Financial, Globalization, Research, USA, World-system | Leave a comment

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UN Panel Says World Should Ditch Dollar

http://www.truthout.org/032109Z

Sat 3/21/09

Reuters:A UN panel will next week recommend that the world ditch the dollar as its reserve currency in favor of a shared basket of currencies, a member of the panel said on Wednesday, adding to pressure on the dollar.”

U.N. panel says world should ditch dollar

Wed Mar 18, 2009

European Investment Correspondent

http://www.reuters.com/article/wtMostRead/idUSTRE52H2CY20090318?sp=true

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – A U.N. panel will next week recommend that the world ditch the dollar as its reserve currency in favor of a shared basket of currencies, a member of the panel said on Wednesday, adding to pressure on the dollar.

Currency specialist Avinash Persaud, a member of the panel of experts, told a Reuters Funds Summit in Luxembourg that the proposal was to create something like the old Ecu, or European currency unit, that was a hard-traded, weighted basket.

Persaud, chairman of consultants Intelligence Capital and a former currency chief at JPMorgan, said the recommendation would be one of a number delivered to the United Nations on March 25 by the U.N. Commission of Experts on International Financial Reform.

“It is a good moment to move to a shared reserve currency,” he said.

Central banks hold their reserves in a variety of currencies and gold, but the dollar has dominated as the most convincing store of value — though its rate has wavered in recent years as the United States ran up huge twin budget and external deficits.

Some analysts said news of the U.N. panel’s recommendation extended dollar losses because it fed into concerns about the future of the greenback as the main global reserve currency, raising the chances of central bank sales of dollar holdings.

“Speculation that major central banks would begin rebalancing their FX reserves has risen since the intensification of the dollar’s slide between 2002 and mid-2008,” CMC Markets said in a note.

Russia is also planning to propose the creation of a new reserve currency, to be issued by international financial institutions, at the April G20 meeting, according to the text of its proposals published on Monday.

It has significantly reduced the dollar’s share in its own reserves in recent years.

GOOD TIME

Persaud said that the United States was concerned that holding the reserve currency made it impossible to run policy, while the rest of world was also unhappy with the generally declining dollar.

“There is a moment that can be grasped for change,” he said.

“Today the Americans complain that when the world wants to save, it means a deficit. A shared (reserve) would reduce the possibility of global imbalances.”

Persaud said the panel had been looking at using something like an expanded Special Drawing Right, originally created by the International Monetary Fund in 1969 but now used mainly as an accounting unit within similar organizations.

The SDR and the old Ecu are essentially combinations of currencies, weighted to a constituent’s economic clout, which can be valued against other currencies and indeed against those inside the basket.

Persaud said there were two main reasons why policymakers might consider such a move, one being the current desire for a change from the dollar.

The other reason, he said, was the success of the euro, which incorporated a number of currencies but roughly speaking held on to the stability of the old German deutschemark compared with, say, the Greek drachma.

Persaud has long argued that the dollar would give way to the Chinese yuan as a global reserve currency within decades.

A shared reserve currency might negate this move, he said, but he believed that China would still like to take on the role.

U.N. panel says world should ditch dollar

UN Panel Says World Should Ditch Dollar

http://www.truthout.org/032109Z

Sat 3/21/09

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BIOFUELS AND REFINING

March 27, 2009 at 10:33 pm | Posted in Economics, Financial, Oil & Gas, Research, Science & Technology | Leave a comment

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This Week’s News on GHGs, Biofuels and Refining‏

Amber Corrin (MotorFuelsInsider@hartenergy.com)

Fri 3/27/09

Hart Energy Publishing, LP • 1749 Old Meadow Road, Suite 301 • McLean, Virginia 22102 • USA
Phone: 1-703-891-4800 • Fax: 1-703-891-4880 •
www.HartEnergy.com

This Week’s News on GHGs, Biofuels and Refining

Amber Corrin

MotorFuelsInsider@hartenergy.com

www.HartEnergy.com

Fri 3/27/09

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BANK FOR INTERNATIONAL SETTLEMENTS BIS REVIEW NO. 37: BUBBLES AND SUPERVISION

March 27, 2009 at 3:24 pm | Posted in China, Economics, Financial, Globalization, Research, World-system | Leave a comment

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BIS Review

Bank for International Settlements

BIS Review No 37 available‏

Press, Service (Press.Service@bis.org)

Publications, Service (Publications@bis.org)

Fri 3/27/09

Please find BIS Review No 37 attached as an Adobe Acrobat (PDF) file.

Alternatively, you can access this BIS Review on the Bank for International Settlements’ website by clicking on http://www.bis.org/review/index.htm.

What’s included?

BIS Review No 37 (27 March 2009)

Masaaki Shirakawa: Provision of subordinated loans

Zhou Xiaochuan: On savings ratio

Svein Gjedrem: The outlook for the Norwegian economy and monetary policy assessments

Ardian Fullani: Recent developments in the global and the Albanian economy

Jean-Pierre Landau: Bubbles and macroprudential supervision

please e-mail press.service@bis.org.

BIS Review

Bank for International Settlements

BIS Review No 37 available‏

Press, Service (Press.Service@bis.org)

Publications, Service (Publications@bis.org)

http://www.bis.org/review/index.htm

Fri 3/27/09

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“PANIHARI: THE WATER WOMEN OF INDIA”

March 27, 2009 at 3:02 pm | Posted in Art, Asia, Development, Economics, Film, Financial, History, India | Leave a comment

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Panihari: The Water Women of India (2006)

Director: inc choices

Editorial Reviews

BoxOffice Magazine – March 30th, 2006

“A compassionate, beautiful film.”

Product Description

Indian-American filmmakers Abi Devan and Sudhi Rajagopal return to their homeland to document life in the desert communities of Rajasthan. Their journey leads them to the Panihari (women who fetch water). The film centers around one woman, Paru, a shoemaker’s wife, as she struggles against nature and society to attain self-reliance for her family and herself. Paru’s story coveys the richness and complexity of desert life as well as the extreme obstacles women in India still face today. Vibrant imagery, music, and folklore combine to paint a vivid picture of life as a Panihari. Includes Directors’ Commentary, Photo Gallery, and Guidebook.

Product Details:

  • Directors: inc choices

  • Format: Color, Dubbed, DVD-Video, Subtitled, NTSC

  • Language: English

  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only.

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

  • Number of discs: 1

  • Rating: not rated

  • Studio: Choices, Inc.

  • DVD Release Date: January 1, 2006

  • Run Time: 30 minutes

Panihari: The Water Women of India (2006)

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“TOWARDS A GLOBAL GREEN RECOVERY”: POTSDAM INSTITUTE

March 27, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Posted in Earth, Economics, Financial, Germany, Globalization, Research, Science & Technology | Leave a comment

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Potsdam Institute: Towards a Global

Green Recovery‏

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

on behalf of Steffen Brunner

(brunner@pik-potsdam.de)

Climate Change Info (climate-l@lists.iisd.ca)

Thu 3/26/09

Dear Climate-l readers,

The Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research together with LSE’s Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment would like to draw your attention to a new report jointly written by a team led by Ottmar Edenhofer and Nick Stern: ‘Towards a Global Green Recovery – Recommendations for Immediate G20 Action’.

The report, prepared on behalf of the German Foreign Office ahead of the G20 London Summit, highlights key measures in seven strategic areas that G20 members can take to tackle the economic crisis and re-orient development towards sustainable, low-carbon growth.

The full report is available for download at: http://www.pik-potsdam.de/globalgreenrecovery

Best regards,

Steffen Brunner

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research
Sustainable Solutions
Telegrafenberg A51
P.O. Box 60 12 03
14412 Potsdam
Germany

Tel. +49 (0)331 288 2471
Email:
brunner@pik-potsdam.de

http://www.climate-l.org

A knowledgebase of International Climate Change Activities, provided by IISD in cooperation with the United Nations System Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB) Secretariat

IISD for environment and sustainable development policy professionals at:

http://www.iisd.ca/email/subscribe.htm

Potsdam Institute: Towards a Global Green Recovery‏

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

on behalf of Steffen Brunner

(brunner@pik-potsdam.de)

Climate Change Info (climate-l@lists.iisd.ca)

http://www.pik-potsdam.de/globalgreenrecovery

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research
Sustainable Solutions
Telegrafenberg A51
P.O. Box 60 12 03
14412 Potsdam
Germany

Thu 3/26/09

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

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FINANCIAL SERVICES AUTHORITY (FSA) U.K.: “TURNER REVIEW” AND THE GLOBAL BANKING CRISIS

March 27, 2009 at 12:18 pm | Posted in Economics, Financial, Globalization, Research, United Kingdom | Leave a comment

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The Turner Review: a regulatory response to the

global banking crisis

The Turner Review Conference

FSA

Financial Services Authority

The FSA publishes “The Turner Review”:

a wide-ranging review of global banking regulation

FSA conference.

Find out more.

Following the banking crisis, the Chancellor of the Exchequer asked Lord Turner, in his capacity as FSA Chairman, to review and make recommendations for reforming UK and international approaches to the way banks are regulated.

Adair, Lord Turner

Adair Turner was appointed FSA Chairman in September 2008, and has combined careers in business, public policy and academia.

Adair Turner’s full biography

The aim is to ensure the future stability of the UK banking system and Lord Turner is expected to recommend much tighter regulation. The Turner Review is billed as one of his most radical epistles that will affect banks, hedge funds and tax havens.

Here, we publish Lord Turner’s Review and the supporting FSA Discussion Paper. These take an in-depth look at the causes of the financial crisis and recommend steps that the international community needs to take to enhance regulatory standards, supervisory approaches and international cooperation and coordination.

Introductory documents

Newsletter [ PDF ]

Press release:

The FSA publishes “The Turner Review”: a wide-ranging review of global banking regulation

Main document

The Turner Review : [ PDF ]

A regulatory response to the global banking crisis

Other relevant information

DP09/2:

A regulatory response to the global banking crisis

This review has made a wide set of recommendations, some of which can be considered formal FSA proposals for action, but some of which need to be deliberated further at global or UK level. The FSA Discussion Paper, which accompanies this Review, covers the formal proposals, and invites feedback from interested parties in line with standard FSA procedures. In addition, we would welcome responses to the wider issues raised by the Review.

If you would like to respond, please follow the procedure set out in the Discussion Paper.

Turner Review Press Conference: Speaking notes and slides for the press

Post:

25 The North Colonnade

Canary Wharf

London E14 5HS

(Company No. 01920623)

Telephone:

Main switchboard

From UK: 020 7066 1000

From Overseas: +44 20 7066 1000

Consumer Helpline (including Central Register authorization queries)

From UK: 0845 606 1234 (call rates may vary)

From Overseas: +44 20 7066 1000

Firms Contact Centre (for authorised firms only)

From UK: 0845 606 9966

From Overseas: +44 20 7066 1000

Complaints against the FSA

From UK: 020 7066 9870

From Overseas: +44 20 7066 9870

Fax:

From UK: 020 7066 1099

From Overseas: +44 20 7066 1099

The Turner Review Conference

FSA

Financial Services Authority

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U.S. TREASURY AUCTION: BID-TO-COVER RATIO

March 27, 2009 at 9:15 am | Posted in Economics, Financial, Research, USA | Leave a comment

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Bid-to-cover ratio

Treasury security auction

The so-called bid/cover ratio, which gauges demand by comparing the number of bids to the amount of securities sold….

Bid/cover ratio:

A ratio that compares the number of bids received in a Treasury security auction to the number of bids accepted.

A ratio above 2.0 indicates a successful auction comprised of aggressive bids. A low ratio is an indication of a disappointing auction, marked by a wide bid-ask spread.

An investment term that is often associated with a treasury auction, the bid-to-cover ratio involves the number of bids that are accepted for the auction divided into the number of bids that were properly submitted in relation to the auction. The calculation of the bid-to-cover ratio is understood to be an accurate means of determining the level of demand for the auction.

The ratio is considered to be an accurate gauge of the current level of desirability for the issue involved in the auction. A high bid-to-cover ratio indicates that the level of investor desire for the issue is very high, and that there is every chance that another similar auction would result in excellent returns. By contrast, a bid-to-cover ratio that is somewhat low is a strong indicator that current market conditions have limited the enthusiasm for the issue, and that engaging in a similar auction in the short term is probably not advisable.

Because the bid-to-cover ratio is held in such high regard by so many investors, it is not unusual for traders to monitor the performance of an issue through a series of auctions before making a decision to place a bid. This is especially true for investors that tend to be conservative. Strong and continuous performance of an issue over a period of time indicates the presence of an investment opportunity that shows excellent possibilities of growing over the long term. That type of performance is important to the investor that prefers to make decisions based on solid evidence, rather than reliance on methods that are based more on instinct and conjecture.

For the new investor, the bid-to-cover ratio is an excellent market indicator to watch. The simplistic calculation of the ratio, coupled with the relatively easy underlying principles that usually underpin the reasons for the performance of the issue, provides the perfect way to learn how the market functions. As a reliable means of evaluating opportunities and planning future actions, the bid-to-cover ratio is ideal for both issuers and buyers.

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OFFICE OF THRIFT SUPERVISION (OTS): HOLDING COMPANY HANDBOOK

March 27, 2009 at 8:20 am | Posted in Economics, Financial, Research, USA | Leave a comment

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OTS (Office of Thrift Supervision)

Daily updates: Supervision for 03/26/2009‏

OTS (Web.Master@ots.treas.gov)

The following are the updates for the date of March 26

2009 from the Office of Thrift Supervision

Fri 3/27/09

Holding Company Handbook

Regulatory Bulletins

Thank you for your interest in the OTS.

To comment on any aspect of the OTS website, send an e-mail to the OTS Webmaster at: webmaster@ots.treas.gov

The following are the updates for the date of March 26

2009 from the Office of Thrift Supervision

OTS (Office of Thrift Supervision)

Daily updates: Supervision for 03/26/2009‏

OTS (Web.Master@ots.treas.gov)

Fri 3/27/09

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BRITISH CLASSIC CINEMA: TWO CITIES FILMS PRODUCTION COMPANY

March 27, 2009 at 3:53 am | Posted in Art, Film, History, United Kingdom | Leave a comment

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Two Cities Films

Formed in 1937, Two Cities was initially envisaged as a production company operating in the two cities of London and Rome which gave the company its name. Its first significant film was French Without Tears (d. Anthony Asquith, 1939), produced by Mario Zampi, but the company is most closely associated with ‘the golden age of British cinema’ – the 1940s – and with big-budget ‘prestige’ picture-making for the Rank Organisation.

The flamboyant driving force of the company was the Italian-born Filippo Del Giudice and, despite his brief internment during the war along with Zampi, Two Cities produced a number of ‘quintessentially English’ film classics including the most popular British film from the wartime period – In Which We Serve (d. Noël Coward/David Lean, 1942). Other Two Cities films such as This Happy Breed (d. Lean, 1944), The Way Ahead (d. Carol Reed, 1944) Henry V (d. Laurence Olivier, 1944), and The Way to the Stars (d. Asquith, 1945) form the backbone of the ‘quality’ cinema much favoured by critics of the day and contributed significantly to the high critical reputation acquired by the British cinema of the time.

In the mid ’40s Two Cities became part of the Rank Organisation producing key films such as Odd Man Out (d. Reed, 1947) and Hamlet (d. Olivier, 1947) towards the end of the decade.

Two Cities Films

Production Company – filmography

  1. To Paris with Love (1955) … Production Company

  2. One Good Turn (1955) … Production Company (as A Two Cities Film)

  3. The Purple Plain (1954) … Production Company

  4. Personal Affair (1953) … Production Company

  5. Trouble in Store (1953) … Production Company

  6. The Net (1953) … Production Company

  7. Encore (1951) … Production Company

  8. Highly Dangerous (1950) … Production Company

  9. Prelude to Fame (1950) … Production Company

  10. The Reluctant Widow (1950) … Production Company

  11. They Were Not Divided (1950) … Production Company

  12. The Rocking Horse Winner (1949) … Production Company

  13. The Chiltern Hundreds (1949) … Production Company

  14. Woman Hater (1949) … Production Company

  15. Madness of the Heart (1949) … Production Company

  16. Trottie True (1949) … Production Company

  17. The Perfect Woman (1949) … Production Company

  18. Adam and Evelyne (1949) … Production Company

  19. Cardboard Cavalier (1949) … Production Company

  20. The History of Mr. Polly (1949) … Production Company

  21. It’s Hard to Be Good (1948) … Production Company

  22. Sleeping Car to Trieste (1948) … Production Company

  23. The Weaker Sex (1948) … Production Company

  24. Mr. Perrin and Mr. Traill (1948) … Production Company

  25. Hamlet (1948) … Production Company

  26. One Night with You (1948) … Production Company

  27. The First Gentleman (1948) … Production Company

  28. Vice Versa (1948) … Production Company

  29. The Mark of Cain (1947) … Production Company

  30. Uncle Silas (1947) … Production Company

  31. Fame Is the Spur (1947) … Production Company

  32. The October Man (1947) … Production Company

  33. Odd Man Out (1947) … Production Company

  34. Hungry Hill (1947) … Production Company

  35. School for Secrets (1946) … Production Company

  36. Carnival (1946) … Production Company

37. Men of Two Worlds (1946) … Production Company

38. Beware of Pity (1946) … Production Company

39. The Way We Live (1946) … Production Company

40. The Way to the Stars (1945) … Production Company (as A Two Cities Film)

41. Blithe Spirit (1945) … Production Company (as A Two Cities Film)

42. The Chronicle History of King Henry the Fift with His Battell Fought at Agincourt in France (1944) … Production Company

43. Don’t Take It to Heart (1944) … Production Company

44. Mr. Emmanuel (1944) … Production Company

45. English Without Tears (1944) … Production Company

46. The Way Ahead (1944) … Production Company (as A Two Cities Film)

47. This Happy Breed (1944) … Production Company

48. The Tawny Pipit (1944) … Production Company

49. Out of Chaos (1944) … Production Company

50. The Demi-Paradise (1943) … Production Company

51. The Lamp Still Burns (1943) … Production Company

52. The Flemish Farm (1943) … Production Company

53. It’s Just the Way It Is (1943) … Production Company

54. The Gentle Sex (1943) … Production Company (as A Two Cities Concanen Film)

55. In Which We Serve (1942) … Production Company (as A Two Cities Film)

56. Unpublished Story (1942) … Production Company

57. Freedom Radio (1941) … Production Company (presents) (as A Two Cities Production)

58. Spy for a Day (1940) … Production Company

59. French Without Tears (1940) … Production Company

60. 13 Men and a Gun (1938) … Production Company

61. Stepping Toes (1938) … Production Company

Blithe Spirit (1945)

Noël Coward comedy about a ghost who won’t stay still

Gentle Sex, The (1943)

WWII drama about seven women in the Auxiliary Territorial Service

Hamlet (1948)

Laurence Olivier’s multi-Oscar-winning Shakespeare adaptation

Henry V (1944)

Laurence Olivier turns Shakespeare into rousing propaganda

In Which We Serve (1942)

David Lean/Noël Coward classic about a bombed WWII destroyer

Lamp Still Burns, The (1943)

Unsubtle but fascinating film about the pre-NHS nursing profession

Madness of the Heart (1949)

Melodrama with Margaret Lockwood as a blind nun

Men of Two Worlds (1946)

An African music student returns home to save his tribe

Odd Man Out (1947)

A wounded Republican gunman dodges police on Belfast’s streets

This Happy Breed (1944)

David Lean/Noël Coward film about a London family between the wars

Trottie True (1948)

Lavish, Technicolor romance with Jean Kent as a rising music-hall star

Trouble In Store (1953)

Comedy in which Norman Wisdom foils a robbery in a department store.

Way Ahead, The (1944)

Inspiring propaganda film following the making of an Army unit

Way We Live, The (1946)

Documentary about the postwar rebuilding of Plymouth

Way to the Stars, The (1945)

Deceptively low-key drama about RAF pilots in World War II

Encyclopedia of British Film

The exhaustive reference work

Del Giudice, Filippo (1892-1962)

Producer

Two Cities Films

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ATLANTA FED WORKING PAPERS

March 27, 2009 at 2:43 am | Posted in Economics, Financial, Research, USA | Leave a comment

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FRBA Working Papers 2009-5

through 2009-12 now online‏

AtlantaFed@frbatlanta.org

Thu 3/26/09

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Working Papers 2009-5 through 2009-12 are now available on the Bank’s Web site.

Understanding Markov-Switching Rational Expectations Models
Roger E.A. Farmer, Daniel F. Waggoner, and Tao Zha
Working Paper 2009-5
Developing a set of necessary and sufficient conditions for equilibria to be determinate in a class of Markov-switching rational expectations models, the authors develop an algorithm to check these conditions in practice.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=0FC7FC9A-5056-9F12-1271FFA4DFFAB9DC&method=display

Decomposing Changes in the Aggregate Labor Force Participation Rate
Julie L. Hotchkiss
Working Paper 2009-6
The author demonstrates the importance of changes in population shares across demographic groups as a driving force behind changes in the overall labor force participation rate.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=0FF1B033-5056-9F12-12CE7AFCD1B766BE&method=display

Product Market Regulation and Market Work: A Benchmark Analysis
Lei Fang and Richard Rogerson
Working Paper 2009-7
Looking at the effect of product market regulations on hours worked, the authors find that these regulations work in effectively the same manner as taxes on labor income or consumption do.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=1068C9C3-5056-9F12-126B564B149DB3C1&method=display

Entry Barriers, Competition, and Technology Adoption
Lei Fang
Working Paper 2009-8
What explains the differences in countries’ total factor productivity and thus their per capita income? The author develops a model showing that entry barriers can be an important reason.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=10AA7096-5056-9F12-125976E35C96FBDF&method=display

The Surprising Use of Credit Scoring in Small Business Lending by Community Banks and the Attendant Effects on Credit Availability and Risk
Allen N. Berger, Adrian M. Cowan, and W. Scott Frame
Working Paper 2009-9
Employing data from a new survey, the authors’ analysis suggests that credit scoring is associated with increased lending to small businesses after a learning period, with no material change in the quality of the portfolio.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=10AA7096-5056-9F12-125976E35C96FBDF&method=display

Technological Change, Financial Innovation, and Diffusion in Banking
W. Scott Frame and Lawrence J. White
Working Paper 2009-10
While the past quarter century has seen substantial changes in the banking industry, the authors find that little is known about how and why financial innovations are initially developed.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=19B5C40B-5056-9F12-1245D4FD2BB3C59E&method=display

Pricing Model Performance and the Two-Pass Cross-Sectional Regression Methodology
Raymond Kan, Cesare Robotti, and Jay Shanken
Working Paper 2009-11
The authors provide a systematic treatment of the two-pass cross-sectional regression methodology when a beta pricing model fails to hold exactly. They derive new specification and model comparison tests.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=19CE56C1-5056-9F12-12B4A7B8006388E0&method=display

A Note on the Estimation of Asset Pricing Models Using Simple Regression Betas
Raymond Kan and Cesare Robotti
Working Paper 2009-12
The authors present an asymptotic analysis of the two-pass cross-sectional regression methodology that makes uses of simple regression betas. They show that ignoring model misspecification can often lead to the incorrect conclusion that a risk factor is priced.
http://www.frbatlanta.org/invoke.cfm?objectid=19DCFC15-5056-9F12-12C71BE78039E50A&method=display

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Use RSS to read the content that interests you. Free RSS (Real Simple Syndication) feeds provide news and updates as they happen. Speeches, events, circular letters, and more are available through http://www.frbatlanta.org/rss/rss.cfm

For a list of items recently posted to the Atlanta Fed’s Web site, go to http://www.frbatlanta.org/whatsnew.cfm

We welcome your comments, questions, and suggestions.

Please e-mail us at webmaster@frbatlanta.org.

FRBA Working Papers 2009-5 through 2009-12

now online‏

AtlantaFed@frbatlanta.org

Thu 3/26/09

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