Daily Dispatches

Last European bank will stop handling dollars for Iran


Iran Begins to Feels
the Financial Squeeze

By Michael Connolly
The Wall Street Journal
Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Evidence appears to be growing that Iranian firms are feeling the pinch of the U.S.-led drive to have banks curtail transactions with Iran's state-controlled banks. Iranian banks and companies, for instance, are now having to put up large deposits -- as high as 100% -- in foreign banks to get them to issue letters of credit for foreign transactions.

Gold ETFs expected to start in India within month


From Press Trust of India
via NewKerala.com
Monday, January 10, 2007


MUMBAI -- Traditional household investment in gold will soon have a new option with the much awaited gold exchange-traded funds (GETFs) expected to be launched within a month.

"The GETF hopefully should be launched within a month," Association of Mutual Funds in India Chairman A.P. Kurian told reporters.

Russian commercial banks can't get enough gold


From Interfax News Service
Monday, January 10, 2006


MOSCOW -- A total of 42 commercial banks signed contracts to buy 161.9 tonnes of gold from producers in 2006, a source at the Gokhran precious metals and gemstones repository told Interfax.

Not all of the gold will have been delivered by the end of last year, so there could be some discrepancy between the amount of gold ordered and actually received, the source said.

Nadler refuses debate on manipulation but releases Fort Knox photos


2:52p ET Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Kitco market analyst Jon Nadler, perhaps the most notorious of the deniers of the central bank gold price manipulation scheme, has refused an invitation to debate the manipulation issue with GATA Chairman Bill Murphy and other speakers at the Vancouver Resource Investment Conference this month. So the conference will hold a panel discussion on the issue featuring Murphy, GoldMoney founder and GATA consultant James Turk, Long Wave Analyst newsletter editor Ian Gordon, and another conference speaker or two.

Hedge fund borrowing examined by U.S. and European regulators


By Rich Miller and Jesse Westbrook
Bloomberg News Service
Tuesday, January 9, 2007


U.S. and European regulators, turning a spotlight on one of Wall Street's most profitable businesses, are conducting a joint probe into whether banks and securities firms set strict enough limits on loans to hedge funds.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the Financial Services Authority in London met last month with some of the biggest lenders to the hedge-fund industry, seeking information on how they decide the amount of collateral required, SEC Commissioner Annette Nazareth said in an interview in Washington. Swiss and German authorities were also involved.

William Pesek: Time for Asia to kick its strong-dollar habit


By William Pesek
Bloomberg News Service
Monday, January 8, 2007


We all start January pledging to kick this or that bad habit. It is always a tough promise to keep, and how much more so when the bad habit is decades old, like the Asian addiction to raising economic growth by keeping currencies weak.

As the 10th anniversary of the Asian financial crisis approaches, it is high time for the world's fastest-growing economic region to get out of the trap of export dependence.

Butler and Friedman on silver's logic and dreams


1:30p ET Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Silver market analysts Ted Butler and Israel Friedman team up to offer "The Logic of Silver" and "Making Dreams Come True," two essays at GoldSeek's companion site, SilverSeek, that aim to build the airtight case for investing in the metal. You can find them here:


CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer

Chavez to socialize Venezuela, shuts opposition TV, promises 'permanent revolution'


Chavez Will Nationalize Power, Telecoms

By Ian James
Associated Press
Monday, January 8, 2006


President Hugo Chavez announced plans Monday to nationalize Venezuela's electrical and telecommunications companies, pledging to create a socialist state in a bold move with echoes of Fidel Castro's revolution in Cuba.

Chavez, who will be sworn in Wednesday to a third term that runs until 2013, also said he wanted a constitutional amendment to eliminate the autonomy of the Central Bank and would soon ask the National Assembly, solidly controlled by his allies, to give him greater powers to legislate by presidential decree.

Thailand won't lift capital controls


From The Associated Press
Monday, January 8, 2007


Thailand has no immediate plans to lift remaining capital controls imposed last month to curb the baht's appreciation, the central bank governor said Monday amid growing calls from foreign brokers to ease the restrictions.

Bank Gov. Tarisa Watanagase told reporters that the bank was considering revisions of "minor" measures but that the baht's relative stability since controls were imposed Dec. 19 shows that the much-criticized move was effective and necessary for the time being.

Thank Goldman Sachs, not weather, for oil price plunge


Investment House
Slashed Energy
in Commodity Index

By Michael Norman
New York Post
Monday, January 8, 2007


It might be a better idea to thank Goldman Sachs, not the weather, for the recent plunge in oil prices.

While recent balmy temperatures have certainly played a role in last week's dip in oil prices, a lesser known but equally powerful move by Goldman at the start of the year might bear some responsibility as well.

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