Election Shows Greece Unlikely to Cause Financial Meltdown, Despite Gloom and Doom

The eyes of the financial world were on Greece once again this weekend, as the Hellenes went to the polls for the second time in six weeks. It’s fair to say that the world hasn’t been this focused on Greece for more than 2,000 years, and the ability of this nation of 11 million people to hold the world in thrall is, on the face of it, rather extraordinary.

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Jobs Numbers: Get Used to Bad Employment Data

Today’s employment figures show that America has entered job stasis. The headline number—69,000 jobs added—was weak at best, made worse by revised data for March and April that subtracted another 50,000 jobs, give or take. The unemployment rate nudged up to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent, but truly the most notable thing about this release was that there was nothing truly notable.

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Markets Relieved at Spain Bailout Deal, Financial World Still Worried

Over the weekend, the Spanish government bowed to the necessity of seeking a bailout for its banking system. The amount was large: $125 billion in loans from the European Union to stave off the collapse of Spanish banks. The result was greeted with relief by financial markets around the world, with stocks initially rising, bond prices falling, and the outflows from southern European banks for the moment stanched.

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Don't De-Friend Facebook Yet: Its IPO Might Not Mean Trouble Ahead

Facebook’s epically hyped IPO debuted not with a bang but with a whimper. While the company sold $16 billion worth of initial shares, the stock ended the day largely where it began, at $38 a share, leaving the company with a market cap of about $100 billion. The offering was widely derided by the Wall Street community of traders, who viewed the stock's failure to soar on day one as a sign of troubled times ahead for Facebook.

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Chaos Over New Elections Deepens Fear of a Greece Chain Reaction

For the third May in a row, events in Greece have taken on global significance. The spark this May, the rising debts and plunging growth of the onetime hub of civilization, is largely the same. But why does the fate of a country with not quite 11 million people and about $300 billion in GDP matter so much? Why does a nation with barely more people than one new Chinese city and an economy hardly larger than the state of Maryland continue to roil international markets? Not since the Trojan War has the fate of the Hellenes been so central to humankind.

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The Monthly Jobs Numbers Don’t Matter

Today’s anemic jobs report is yet another indication that the unemployment picture in the United States is getting neither better nor worse. It is also yet another piece of evidence that there is a chronic, long-term structural employment issue in America. It is not an acute crisis; it isn’t getting much worse; and it isn’t going away anytime soon.

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Latest Record Results Show Apple a Bigger Global Power Than Most Nations

Yet again, Apple announced record sales and earnings. Yet again, its “Jobs report” stood in stark contrast to the monthly official jobs report. For the past four years, as the U.S. economy has stumbled, Apple has soared. As millions have lost jobs or stayed underemployed, Apple has sold more phones, iPads, and computers than most thought possible. While its success certainly has come at the expense of competitors such as Research in Motion (maker of the BlackBerry) and Nokia, it has generated tens of billions in revenue and sold tens of millions of devices by reaching new customers and not simply taking market share. And it has seen its most dramatic success during one of the worst economic slumps in the developed world.

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Huge Corporations Win Global Economic Spoils as 99 Percent Get Squeezed

The 1 percent versus the 99 percent—the haves and the have-nots; the government or the people; China versus the United States. Our conversations today are framed by these splits, yet as compelling as these are, they are each secondary to the yawning gulf that has emerged between large, multinational companies and everything else.

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