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Russian government predicts severe inflation, recession for 2015

WASHINGTON, December 26, 2014 – The Russian economy, already in a slump, will enter a sharp recession next year, accompanied by double-digit inflation. This is according to Russian government ministers, who blame Western sanctions against Russia over the annexation of Crimea and the plummeting price of oil. The sanctions have blocked foreign investment in the ...

Cuba, North Korea and Russia: Why sanctions work, and don’t

WASHINGTON, December 20, 2014 – President Obama’s decision to lift some sanctions against Cuba has infuriated some of his opponents and parts of the Cuban immigrant community. They have argued that Cuba’s suppression of human rights warrants sanctions, and that lifting them sends the wrong signal to other nations. Those arguments are based on fundamental ...

Oil stocks, Wall Street = roadkill as WTI crude collapses

WASHINGTON, December 10, 2014 – Wednesday is a day that will live in infamy, at least for those invested in stocks. As we write this, stocks across the boards, with few exceptions, are taking a nosedive to hell. The market, in general, is beginning to resemble the very flat and very dead specimen of roadkill ...

Nuclear disarmament and the Ukraine conundrum

WASHINGTON, November 13, 2014 – NATO officials have confirmed that Russian troops, tanks, and other military equipment are crossing the border into Ukraine. Fighting has picked up around Donetsk, and there have been “green man” sightings – men in green uniforms with no insignia. The invasion of Crimea was carried out in part by green ...

America made the Middle East mess

WASHINGTON, September 9, 2014 — Just two days away from the thirteenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, the United States once again finds itself embroiled and knee deep in the mess and much that is World politics. In the last three years we have seen numerous earth shattering events take place throughout the world. And ...

Thursday stocks spooked by rumblings in eastern Ukraine

WASHINGTON, August 28, 2014 – Stocks are taking the kind of hit the Maven more or less expected today. As of approximately 11:30 a.m. EDT, the Dow is off 50 points, the S&P 500 is down 3.6, and the NASDAQ is off about 6.5: all modest drops on continuing weak volume, but to be expected ...