1. Though the Dutch financial markets then had none of today’s technology, they employed many of the same practices that traders use today. Investors bought securities, sometimes borrowing money with loans secured by the shares they were buying. In today's language, they bought shares on margin. Lenders protected themselves by demanding a “haircut” – collateral in cash or securities that exceeded the loan amount by a specified percentage. If the value of the securities dropped below that specified percentage, the lender would demand that the investor put up additional money to stay in line with the haircut. If the investor couldn’t come up with the added margin, the lender was entitled to liquidate the securities and recoup the loan amount.
6. William Leung, portfolio manager at Cohen & Steers, the US investment house with $4bn of assets exposed to Asia, agrees. He argues that speculative investment will be driven out of the market as prices fall. He adds that a trend in the industry towards alternative investments should mean that the price of real estate investment trusts rises even if the value of underlying assets grow more slowly. “We don’t think this correction will be so sharp,” he says.
3. The fall in profits in December highlights the challenges facing an industrial sector racked by overcapacity and falling prices, adding to pressure on authorities to loosen monetary policy and boost infrastructure spending to cushion the slowdown.
4. Paramore, 'After Laughter'
5. Global pharmaceutical spending will surpassthe trillion dollar threshold in 2014, with high prices for innovativehepatitis C and cancer drugs in the US, a new study says. By 2018spending is expected to increase by another 30 percent.
6. The 24K pizza is available at Industry Kitchen, an eatery in New York City's South Street Seaport, for a whopping $2,000 and, as the name would suggest, is noted for being covered in flakes of 24-karat gold.
1. A meditation on love, loss and the meaning of life. Dog people and Lou Reed fans will be especially susceptible (I plead guilty on both counts), but anyone who ever had a heart is likely to succumb to Ms. Anderson’s ethereal wisdom and her fierce formal wit.
2. Just 21 millimeters long, 16 millimeters high, and 4 millimeters thick, the amulet, of which part is missing, has a “raised decoration” on it with a loop at one end that allowed it to be worn on a cord around the neck.
It’s not clear which group of Dutch lenders was wrong. It’s possible that the Seppenwolde lenders ignored the evidence about broader financial conditions and were too pessimistic. It’s also possible that the other lenders were too casual in brushing off the implications of the East India mess. Either way, the Dutch episode suggests that even sophisticated investors become optimistic or pessimistic for myopic reasons.
Some 18.1 million people, for example, want a good full-time job but can't find one, an unusually high number 5 1/2 years into a recovery. And despite a sharp decline in the number of people out of work six months or longer, that figure is still higher than at any time before the 2007-09 recession.