Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Wednesday Evening Links

1. Late Payments on Mortgages Hit a Three-Year Low of 5.5% in Q2, Lowest Since Q1 2009.  America's most economically successful state, North Dakota, leads the country with the lowest mortgage delinquency rate in Q2 for any state, at only 1.3%.     

2. If you tax something, you get less of it, French edition:

As French President François Hollande vows to tax income above one million euros at 75%:

"Many companies are studying contingency plans to move high-paid executives outside of France, according to consultants, lawyers, accountants and real estate agents. They say some executives and wealthy people have already packed up for destinations like Britain, Belgium, Switzerland and the United States, taking their taxable income with them. They also know of companies — start-ups and multinationals alike — that are delaying plans to invest in France or to move employees or new hires here."

3. U.S. cross-border truck trade with Mexico rose by 17.1% in May year-over-year to an all-time record monthly high of $29.1 billion, reflecting the steadlily increasing trade between the NAFTA members and growing consumption by the Mexican middle class.

4. Interesting interactive map from the EIA showing the energy infrastructure of the Gulf of Mexico.  

5. Chimera Energy Corporation of Houston, Texas, has announced that it is licensing a new water-less method for extracting oil and gas from shale fields that uses exothermic reactions instead of water to fracture shale.

6. Justice Department hits Gibson Guitar with a $300,000 fine over fingerboards.  




28 Comments:

At 8/09/2012 1:35 AM, Blogger Don Culo said...

Every unemployed person in the country should move to North Dakota and become a millionaire.

 
At 8/09/2012 5:12 AM, Blogger Benjamin said...

In the USA, the top federal income tax through the 1950s and 1960s was 90 percent; it remained into the 70 percent range through much of the 1970s.

We had terrific growth and low inflation in the 1950s and 1960s.

So what did we have less of in the 1950s and 1960s? Social anomie?

 
At 8/09/2012 6:49 AM, Blogger Hell_Is_Like_Newark said...

Benjamin:

Between 1949 and 1961 the USA experienced 4 recessions and had periods of historically (before being beaten out by the 70's) high inflation. There was a reason why taxes were cut in the early 1960's.. it was to stop the pattern of dipping back in recession.

The saving grace for the USA was the fact that much of the world had to buy goods from us. Germany (Europe in General) and much of Asia were still rebuilding or getting swallowed up by communism.


As for the 90% tax rates.. few paid it. What is the point of earning that level of income of the government takes 90%? You don't bother or you take your compensation in non-taxable forms (company cars, gold plated health insurance, etc.).

 
At 8/09/2012 8:56 AM, Blogger Methinks said...

on the Hollande quote:

During the election, French citizens became concerned that such a high tax rate on French film stars and soccer players would encourage them to leave. Hollande's response was that he would exempt them. This is what Banana Republics look like, folks.

Mitterrand's socialist programs destroyed France. Before Mitterrand's assent, the Arnaults were in the construction business in France (by way of civil engineering, but those details are not relevant to my comment). As Mitterrand came to power, Bernard Arnault left for Florida where he built condos far away from Mitterrand's noose. He returned only after Mitterrand was forced to rid France of most of his destructive socialist policies. Today, Bernard Arnault is one of the richest men in the world and head of the largest luxury brand group, LVMH. How many Arnaults will leave France under Hollande? I hope many. It seems the Russian saying is right - history teaches us nothing.

 
At 8/09/2012 10:10 AM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

During the election, French citizens became concerned that such a high tax rate on French film stars and soccer players would encourage them to leave. Hollande's response was that he would exempt them.

So, you're going to raise taxes on the rich, then exempt them from said taxes? So, what are you trying to accomplish here?

 
At 8/09/2012 10:32 AM, Blogger givemefreedom said...

Jon Murphy,

I think you missed Methinks point. She said that type of pandering to special interests (since Hollande was going to exempt only rich actors and soccer players) is what Banana Republics do. She was not stating support of the exemptions.

As for what Hollande is trying to accomplish with this, I think pandering to his political base would be a fair guess of his goal.

Hurting the French economy will likely be the result though as many of the rich who are not actors/soccer stars will leave France to avoid the high taxes.

 
At 8/09/2012 10:44 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"Hollande's response was that he would exempt them"

So he would exempt France's version of the Kardashians, but not the businessmen who make things and employ people? France is doomed.

 
At 8/09/2012 11:03 AM, Blogger Its GSATT said...

I made the mistake of reading the French articles comment section.

HOLY WOW. I always wondered who was watching CNBC. There's hardly an ounce of intelligence in that crowd.


Go France!!!!!!!! show us by example....... we'll bail ya out somehow

 
At 8/09/2012 11:06 AM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

I think you missed Methinks point. She said that type of pandering to special interests (since Hollande was going to exempt only rich actors and soccer players) is what Banana Republics do. She was not stating support of the exemptions.

By bad, man, but I was being sarcastic. I agree fully with Methinks' point. I was just pointing out how silly Hollande's position is.

 
At 8/09/2012 11:23 AM, Blogger givemefreedom said...

Sorry, it is sometimes hard to catch sarcasm in print. I'm sure that I would have understood your comment if we were having a face to face converstionn.

Cheers.

 
At 8/09/2012 11:23 AM, Blogger JakeW said...

The Amazon-Google stat is interesting. It just goes to show that every company is vulnerable to competition.

 
At 8/09/2012 11:23 AM, Blogger JakeW said...

The Amazon-Google stat is interesting. It just goes to show that every company is vulnerable to competition.

 
At 8/09/2012 11:54 AM, Blogger Methinks said...

Oh, yeah. Hollande is the poster boy for Socialist Silliness. But it's the fact that this sh*t flies in France that is so fascinating.

Grab some popcorn, gentlemen. This is going to be interesting to watch. From a distance.

 
At 8/09/2012 1:47 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"Grab some popcorn, gentlemen. This is going to be interesting to watch. From a distance."

I expect many will flee France.

I'm looking forward to meeting some new French neighbors. :)

I already know a little French:

"Laissez le bon temps rouler"

So it should be easy to get acquanted.

 
At 8/09/2012 3:53 PM, Blogger Methinks said...

Sadly, Ron H., many of them think it's great policy. As they flee to escape it. The French, like refugees to the South from the Soviet Socialist States of the Northeast are kind of hilarious like that.

(Forgive the generalization. It most definitely doesn't apply to every individual in the group. But, in general....)

 
At 8/09/2012 4:02 PM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

Soviet Socialist States of the Northeast

Not all of us are socialist! New Hampshire is a beacon of freedom! In the same store, you can buy your bread and milk, fireworks, and alcohol (hint: it's Walgreens). In New Hampshire, not only is income and sales tax nonexistant, we are trying to make it unconstitutional. In New Hampshire, it is illegal for the government to request purchase patters of its citizens from stores.

 
At 8/09/2012 6:06 PM, Blogger Methinks said...

New Hampshire is also the home of the Free State project.

New Hampshire is the exception and we considered moving there. I'm talking about NY, NJ, CT, MA, RI, PA and while we're at it, IL and MI as well.

 
At 8/09/2012 6:38 PM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

Don't forget VT!

 
At 8/09/2012 7:59 PM, Blogger Methinks said...

Jon, I thought about VT, but I've never met a refuge from VT here.

They strike me either as hippies who are down with the commie program there or they escape to New Hampshire. The only part of Vermont I'm familiar with is Stowe.

 
At 8/09/2012 8:02 PM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

Vermont is a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there. They have really weird laws. They've really masted the wealth distribution in VT. Not a lot of poor people there, but not a lot of rich either. Most of them are lower middle class.

That being said, the Green Mountains are beautiful and Ben & Jerry's factory is great if you like ice cream.

 
At 8/09/2012 9:12 PM, Blogger sethstorm said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 8/09/2012 9:16 PM, Blogger sethstorm said...


"Many companies are studying contingency plans to move high-paid executives outside of France, according to consultants, lawyers, accountants and real estate agents. They say some executives and wealthy people have already packed up for destinations like Britain, Belgium, Switzerland and the United States, taking their taxable income with them. They also know of companies — start-ups and multinationals alike — that are delaying plans to invest in France or to move employees or new hires here."


Then the answer is to have joint agreements to enforce tax laws on the country someone has left. For agreeing to enforce US tax law on expats in France, the US enforces it on French in the US - even if they become citizens.

In addition, those French are not the same French that came to (what now is) the US centuries ago. They aren't even close if you look to history. The Sun King and his government would be closer by comparison to those traitors.

 
At 8/09/2012 9:21 PM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

Sethstorm:

Why would a country agree to such a plan?

If Germany could lure rich people away from France (thus expanding their own revenues base without raising taxes at all), how would it be in Germany's best interest to agree to such a tit-for-tat treaty with France?

The only way such a treaty would even be beneficial would be if the tax environments between the two nations are identical. But in that scenario, why would a person choose one country over another?

 
At 8/10/2012 2:41 AM, Blogger Ron H. said...

Jon M:

"In the same store, you can buy your bread and milk, fireworks, and alcohol (hint: it's Walgreens)."

What about ammo? You didn't mention ammo - unless that's a subset of "fireworks" in New Hampshire-speak.

 
At 8/10/2012 2:51 AM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"Why would a country agree to such a plan?

If Germany could lure rich people away from France (thus expanding their own revenues base without raising taxes at all), how would it be in Germany's best interest to agree to such a tit-for-tat treaty with France?

The only way such a treaty would even be beneficial would be if the tax environments between the two nations are identical. But in that scenario, why would a person choose one country over another?
"

There you go using common sense and logic again. It's wasted on your target audience.

 
At 8/10/2012 6:24 AM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...

What about ammo? You didn't mention ammo - unless that's a subset of "fireworks" in New Hampshire-speak.

Nah, you'd need to go to a dealer for that. But they are pretty common up here.

 
At 8/12/2012 5:11 AM, Blogger sethstorm said...


If Germany could lure rich people away from France (thus expanding their own revenues base without raising taxes at all), how would it be in Germany's best interest to agree to such a tit-for-tat treaty with France?

The only way such a treaty would even be beneficial would be if the tax environments between the two nations are identical. But in that scenario, why would a person choose one country over another?

Functionally, they are identical. They would be trading each others' tax cheats for purposes of enforcement.

 
At 8/12/2012 12:50 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"Functionally, they are identical. They would be trading each others' tax cheats for purposes of enforcement."

Didn't you understand Jon's rhetorical question?

 

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