WBEZ | debt http://www.wbez.org/tags/debt Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Greek financial future hangs in limbo http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-06-29/greek-financial-future-hangs-limbo-112279 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP%20PhotoGiannis%20Papanikos1.jpg" style="width: 602px; height: 375px;" title="(Photo: AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/212538753&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><br />&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Greek banks close as debt crisis continues</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Banks in Greece closed Monday. The government of Greece is trying to prevent the Greek financial system from collapsing by preventing Greeks from withdrawing all their funds in a panic. Greeks are now also limited on how much money they can withdraw from ATM machines and businesses are limited in the transactions they can do. It&rsquo;s known as capital control. Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, has called for a referendum on July 5th to allow the Greek public to vote on whether or not it wants to remain in the European Union. Endy Zemenides, executive director of the Hellenic American Leadership Council joins us from DC, where he has been lobbying the US Congress to push for a deal that has sustainable debt levels for Greece.<br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong>&nbsp;<em>Endy Zemenides is executive director of the&nbsp;<a href="http://hellenicleaders.com/">Hellenic American Leadership Council</a>.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/212536996&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><br />&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Climate change threatens survival of Pukapuka</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Pukapuka is one of the most remote atolls in the Cook Islands. It&rsquo;s one of the world&rsquo;s oldest cultures dating back more than 2,000 years. Now, its entire existence is being threatened by climate change. The documentary, &#39;Homecoming: A film about Pukapuka,&#39; hopes to tell the island&rsquo;s story, before it&rsquo;s gone. The subjects of the film, John Frisbie and Amelia Borofsky, join us from Honolulu, along with filmmaker, Gemma Cubero del Barrio.<br /><br /><strong>Guests: </strong></p><ul><li style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><em>John Frisbie and Amelia Borofsky are the subjects in the documentary <a href="https://www.facebook.com/HomecomingDoc">&#39;<span>Homecoming: A Film about Pukapuka.&#39; </span></a></em></li><li style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><em>Gemma Cubero del Barrio is the director of <a href="https://twitter.com/HomecomingDoc">&#39;<span id="docs-internal-guid-de1a98be-4115-f05b-e86b-ef0e46cbf432">Homecoming: A Film about Pukapuka.&#39;</span></a></em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/212535540&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><br />&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Theory of the sixth mass extinction</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Scientists maintain that in Earth&rsquo;s 4.5 billion years, there have been five &ldquo;mass extinctions.&rdquo; These events destroy life at an accelerated rate. The fifth mass extinction wiped out 96 percent of life on the planet, including the dinosaurs. A new article theorizes that we currently are witnessing Earth&rsquo;s sixth mass extinction. Professor Paul Ehrlich of Stanford University, co-authored the article, &#39;Accelerated modern human&ndash;induced species losses: Entering the sixth mass extinction.&#39; We&rsquo;ll ask him what&rsquo;s causing our planet to lose &ldquo;species of other organisms&rdquo; at a pace &rdquo;unparalleled for 65 million years.&quot;<br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong>&nbsp;<em><span id="docs-internal-guid-9937d329-411a-8dc6-7377-5e2bf3583eb7"><a href="https://twitter.com/PaulREhrlich">Paul Ehrlich</a> is a professor at&nbsp;</span>Stanford University.</em></p></p> Mon, 29 Jun 2015 15:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-06-29/greek-financial-future-hangs-limbo-112279 Greek debt crisis http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-06-04/greek-debt-crisis-112142 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP%20PhotoYorgos%20Karahalis.jpg" style="width: 563px; height: 375px;" title="(Photo: AP/Yorgos Karahalis)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/208829796&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Greece inches toward debt agreement</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">The Greek prime minister met with the country&rsquo;s Eurozone creditors in Brussels yesterday and during the night to try and negotiate the terms of a final loan agreement for its international bailout. Greece and the Eurozone lenders and the IMF have been in negotiations for months over what kinds of reforms Greece needs to make in order to secure the final group of loans. Greece is hoping to avert a default although the country has said it might not be able to make its next IMF repayment, 335 million dollars, which is due on Friday. The head of the International Monetary Fund has said she is &quot;confident&quot; Greece will make the key debt payment tomorrow. Stephen Nelson, a professor of political science at Northwestern University who specializes in the politics of debt and Nick Malkoutzis, editor of MacroPolis, join us to talk about the possible solutions to the crisis and its impact on Greece.<br /><br /><strong>Guests: </strong></p><ul><li style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><em><a href="http://www.polisci.northwestern.edu/people/core-faculty/stephen-nelson.html">Stephen Nelson</a> is a professor of political science at Northwestern University.</em></li><li style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><em><a href="https://twitter.com/nickmalkoutzis">Nick Malkoutzis</a> is the editor of MacroPolis.&nbsp;</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/208829794&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><br />&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Global Activism: Blind Foundation for India</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">According to World Health Organization, close to 300 million people globally are visually impaired, 39 million are blind and nine out of every ten visually impaired people are low-income. Manu Vora is president and founding director of the Blind Foundation for India (BFI), based in Naperville, IL. We first spoke with him in 2008. For our Global Activism segment, Manu is back to update us on BFI&rsquo;s work to provide aid and support to the tens of millions of India&rsquo;s visually impaired.<br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong> <em>Manu Vora is&nbsp;president and founding director of the <a href="http://www.blindfoundation.org/">Blind Foundation for India</a>.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/208829791&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 23.9999980926514px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; vertical-align: baseline; background-color: rgb(255, 244, 244);">Relief efforts continue in Nepal and US-South Asian relations</span></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Nepal continues to rebuild after a deadly earthquake struck the country last April. According the U.S. State Department, the earthquake destroyed or damaged 760,000 homes. The United States has provided temporary housing to many displaced Nepalis and is collaborating with the Nepali government on coordinating the reconstruction of the infrastructure that was destroyed. This week, U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced the US agreed to two new defense trade deals with India as part of a plan to strengthen military ties between the two countries. Nisha Desai Biswal, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, joins us to talk about the U.S. effort in Nepal and relations with India.<br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong>&nbsp;<em><a href="http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/biog/215789.htm">Nisha Desai Biswal</a>&nbsp;is Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs.</em></p></p> Thu, 04 Jun 2015 16:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2015-06-04/greek-debt-crisis-112142 Week in Review: Dennis Hastert indicted, Chicago still most corrupt, Bears dismiss Ray McDonald http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-05-29/week-review-dennis-hastert-indicted-chicago-still-most-corrupt <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/7167050199_8f7024b8a4_z.jpg" style="height: 661px; width: 620px;" title="(Photo: Flickr/Teemu008)" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207892222&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="font-family: inherit; font-size: 24px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">Week in Review: Dennis Hastert indicted, Chicago still most corrupt, Bears dismiss Ray McDonald</span><br />We recap the week&rsquo;s news including the developing scandal surrounding former Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert; the latest developments from Springfield; and the ups-and-downs for the Chicago Bulls, Bears and Blackhawks.</p><p dir="ltr"><br /><strong>Guests:</strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><a href="https://twitter.com/amyguth">Amy Guth</a> is a WGN radio host.</em></li><li><em><a href="https://twitter.com/AndyShawBGA">Andy Shaw</a> is president and CEO of the Better Government Association.</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207892221&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: inherit; font-size: 24px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit;">Friday Mini-Mix featuring DJ Milty Evans</span><br />Every Friday we bring you a brand new mix from the Vocalo DJ Collective, curated by DJ Jesse De La Pena. This week&rsquo;s set comes from DJ Milty Evans and features soul-inspired House music.</p><p dir="ltr"><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="https://twitter.com/MiltyEvans">Milty Evans</a> is a Chicago-based DJ.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207884595&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: inherit; font-size: 24px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit;">30th annual Chicago Gospel Music Festival preview</span><br /><span id="docs-internal-guid-bad12e22-a1f6-2498-df7b-dbd700376f6c">The annual Chicago Gospel Music Festival kicks off Friday evening at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park and runs through Sunday night. Ivy Hall is the Gospel Music Festival Programmer for the City of Chicago. She joins us with a details on this year&rsquo;s fest.</span></p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <em>Ivy Hall is the <a href="http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/dca/supp_info/chicago_gospel_musicfestival.html">Gospel Music Fest</a> programmer.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207884724&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><br /><span style="font-family: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-size: 24px;">Cook County Commissioner propses plan to take on gun violence</span><br />To date this year, there have been at least 600 shootings and 140 people killed by gun violence in the Chicago. Grown weary of hearing the weekend tally of shootings and fatalities in the city, Cook County Commissioner Richard Boykin &nbsp;- who represents a portion of the West Side and west suburbs - proposed a 7-point plan to stem the tide of violence. His plan includes domestic terrorism charges against shooters and accomplices. He joins us in studio to discuss his plan.&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr"><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="http://www.richardrboykin.com/about">Richard Boykin</a> is Cook County Commissioner for Chicago&rsquo;s 1st District.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207885386&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><br /><span style="font-family: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-size: 24px;">Tech Shift Week in Review: Subsidized internet, new Google gadgetry, and supercomputing</span><br />The FCC proposes subsidizing broadband access for the poor; Google introduces some pretty fantastic technology; and the latest supercomputing news. Those are just a few stories we explore on our Tech Shift Week in Review. We&rsquo;re joined by Argonne&rsquo;s Deputy Director for its leadership computing facility, Susan Coglan, as well as our WBEZ super digital guy, Tim Akimoff.&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr"><br /><strong>Guests:</strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bad12e22-a21a-647f-8595-2e9ffda7120d"><a href="https://www.alcf.anl.gov/staff-directory/susan-coghlan">Susan Coghlan</a></span> is a Deputy Division Director at Argonne National Laboratory.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bad12e22-a21a-647f-8595-2e9ffda7120d"><a href="https://twitter.com/timakimoff">Tim Akimoff</a></span> is WBEZ&rsquo;s Director of Digital.&nbsp;</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207884823&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: inherit; font-size: 24px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit;">Gov. Rauner pressures Democrats to pass his agenda items by Sunday</span><br />There&rsquo;s a flurry of activity in Springfield as Republican Governor Bruce Rauner has issued Democrats an ultimatum to pass two of his agenda items by Sunday. But Democrats are saying that&rsquo;s not possible. Those negotiations are just part of what&rsquo;s happening in Springfield. WBEZ&rsquo;s State Political reporter Tony Arnold is in Springfield and joins us for an update.</p><p><br /><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold">Tony Arnold</a> is a WBEZ reporter.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207884969&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: inherit; font-size: 24px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit;">Gas prices are rising in Chicago, but not like last year</span><br />Gas prices in Chicago are going up. In fact, they&rsquo;ve risen by seven percent in the last week alone. But even with the jump, what you&rsquo;re paying at the pump is still lower than it was a year ago. Patrick DeHaan is GasBuddy.com&rsquo;s Senior Petroleum Analyst for the Midwest and he joins us with more.</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="https://twitter.com/GasBuddyGuy">Patrick DeHaan</a> is GasBuddy.com&rsquo;s Senior Petroleum Analyst for the Midwest.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/207885097&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: inherit; font-size: 24px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: inherit;">More details emerge in the Dennis Hastert indictment</span><br /><span id="docs-internal-guid-bad12e22-a229-24c6-0bb4-38ed8b470e70">Thursday afternoon we learned that former House speaker Dennis Hastert, an Illinois Republican, was indicted on charges that he lied to the FBI about alleged hush money he paid to someone the indictment refers to only as &ldquo;Individual A.&rdquo; Now, more details are starting to emerge with the </span>New York Times reporting that Hastert was paying someone to conceal decades-old sexual abuse that took place when he was a high school teacher and coach in suburban Chicago. Here to walk us through the legal language of the indictment is former federal prosecutor Jeff Cramer, who&rsquo;s currently a senior managing director at Kroll Investigations, a risk and security consultancy.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="http://www.kroll.com/who-we-are/kroll-experts/jeffrey-cramer">Jeff Cramer</a> is a senior managing director at risk and security consultancy, Kroll Investigations.</em></p></p> Fri, 29 May 2015 18:06:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-05-29/week-review-dennis-hastert-indicted-chicago-still-most-corrupt Argentina's debt crisis http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-06-24/argentinas-debt-crisis-110398 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP344717063728.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A U.S. judge says Argentina must repay hedge funds that own bonds the country had defaulted on in 2001. Argentina has asked for a stay in the ruling. Stephen Nelson, a professor of political science at Northwestern University who specializes in the politics of debt, explains the case.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-20/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-20.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-20" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Argentina's debt crisis " on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Tue, 24 Jun 2014 11:21:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-06-24/argentinas-debt-crisis-110398 Moody's downgrades debt of 7 Illinois universities http://www.wbez.org/news/moodys-downgrades-debt-7-illinois-universities-108393 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/moody&#039;s.png" alt="" /><p><p>Moody&#39;s Investors Service downgraded debt ratings on seven public Illinois universities, and warns more decreases could take place in the future.</p><p>The bond rating agency took the actions Friday, about two months after it warned it was reviewing all public universities in Illinois because of the state&#39;s precarious financial situation. The state of Illinois&#39; debt was downgraded in early June.</p><p>In Friday&#39;s downgrades, only Northern Illinois University maintained its debt rating.</p><p>The downgrades affect a combined $2.24 billion in debt, but most of that belongs to the University of Illinois.</p><p>In separate research notes, Moody&#39;s attributes its decisions on the state&#39;s history of unpaid bills and its $100 billion pension backlog.</p><p>UI spokesman Tom Hardy <a href="http://bit.ly/1685Uln">told The News-Gazette</a> the downgrade wasn&#39;t a surprise, but is still &quot;disappointing.&quot;</p></p> Tue, 13 Aug 2013 11:52:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/moodys-downgrades-debt-7-illinois-universities-108393 Proposal for Illinois to borrow $4B to pay bills http://www.wbez.org/news/proposal-illinois-borrow-4b-pay-bills-104052 <p><p>SPRINGFIELD, Ill.&nbsp; &mdash; A state lawmaker is proposing Illinois borrow $4 billion to pay its overdue bills, saying agencies and vendors who do business with the state are in dire straits and need to be paid.</p><p>The bill from Rep. Esther Golar, a Chicago Democrat, would allow Illinois to borrow the money and use it toward bills more than a month past due as of September.</p><p>But Republican Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka said Tuesday the worst thing the state could do is take on more debt.</p><p>Topinka said her office currently has nearly 170,000 outstanding bills totaling $7.1 billion. But she said as the economy improves, the state is making progress paying down the backlog.</p><p>Golar asked for more time before the House Executive Committee votes.</p></p> Tue, 27 Nov 2012 16:41:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/proposal-illinois-borrow-4b-pay-bills-104052 Debt talks on the brink of failure http://www.wbez.org/story/debt-talks-brink-failure-94214 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-November/2011-11-20/AP9908040646.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>WASHINGTON — A special deficit-reduction supercommittee appears likely to admit failure on Monday, unable or unwilling to compromise on a mix of spending cuts and tax increases required to meet its assignment of saving taxpayers at least $1.2 trillion over the coming decade.</p><p>The panel is sputtering to a close after two months of talks in which the members were never able to get close to bridging a fundamental divide over how much to raise taxes to address a budget deficit that forced the government to borrow 36 cents of every dollar it spent last year.</p><p>Members of the bipartisan panel, formed during the summer crisis over raising the government's borrowing limit, spent their time on Sunday in testy performances on television talk shows, blaming each other for the impasse.</p><p>In a series of television interviews, not a single panelist seemed optimistic about any last-minute breakthrough. And it was clear that the two sides had never gotten particularly close, at least in the official exchanges of offers that were leaked to the media.</p><p>Aides said any remaining talks had broken off.</p><p>"There is one sticking divide. And that's the issue of what I call shared sacrifice," said panel co-chair Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., on CNN's "State of the Union."</p><p>"The wealthiest Americans who earn over a million a year have to share too. And that line in the sand, we haven't seen Republicans willing to cross yet," she said</p><p>Republicans said Democrats' demands on taxes were simply too great and weren't accompanied by large enough proposals to curb the explosive growth of so-called entitlement programs like Medicare and Medicaid.</p><p>"If you look at the Democrats' position it was 'We have to raise taxes. We have to pass this jobs bill, which is another almost half-trillion dollars. And we're not excited about entitlement reform,' " countered Republican Jon Kyl of Arizona on NBC's "Meet the Press."</p><p>Under the committee's rules, any plan would have to be unveiled Monday, but it appeared that Murray and co-chair Rep. Jeb Hensarling of Texas would instead issue a statement declaring the panel's work at a close, aides said.</p><p>"Put a bow on it. It's done," said an aide to a supercommittee Republican.</p><p>Failure by the panel would trigger about $1 billion over nine years in automatic across-the-board spending cuts to a wide range of domestic programs and the Pentagon budget, starting in 2013, according to the Congressional Budget Office. This action, called a "sequester," would also generate $169 billion in saving from lower interest costs on the national debt.</p><p>Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says the required cuts of up to $454 billion to the Pentagon would be "devastating" and leave a "hollow force," and defense hawks of Capitol Hill promise to unwind them. But that effort will be complicated by the insistence of other lawmakers that the overall amount of the budget cuts be left in place.</p><p>"I can't imagine that, knowing of the importance of national defense, that both Democrats and Republicans wouldn't find a way to work through that process so we still get the $1.2 trillion in cuts, but it doesn't all fall on defense," said supercommittee Republican Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona.</p><p>The panel's failure also sets up a fight within a battle-weary, dysfunctional Congress over renewing a payroll tax cut and jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed, both of which are set to expire at the end of the year. Both proposals are part of President Barack Obama's $447 billion jobs plan.</p><p>Extending the current 2 percentage point payroll tax cut isn't a popular idea with many Republicans, but allowing it to expire could harm the economy, economists say. So too would a cutoff of unemployment benefits averaging about $300 a week to millions of people who have been out of work for more than six months.</p><p>Serious negotiations ended Friday after Democrats rejected a $644 billion offer comprised of $543 billion in spending cuts, fees and other non-tax revenue, as well as $3 billion in tax revenue from closing a special tax break for corporate purchases of private jets. It also assumed $98 billion in reduced interest costs.</p><p>Officials familiar with the offer said it would save the government $121 billion by requiring federal civilian workers to contribute more to their pension plans, shave $23 billion from farm and nutrition programs and generate $15 billion from new auctions of broadcast spectrum to wireless companies.</p><p>Democrats said the plan was unbalanced because it included barely any tax revenue.</p><p>"Our Democratic friends are unable to cut even a dollar in spending without saying it has to be accompanied by tax increases," Kyl said.</p><p>On Saturday, Sen. Rob Portman floated an even smaller plan, said a lawmaker directly familiar with the panel's work. It, too, was rejected. The lawmaker required anonymity because of the secrecy of the talks.</p><p>The committee faces a Wednesday deadline. But members would have to agree on the outlines of a package by Monday to allow time for drafting and assessing by the Congressional Budget Office.</p><p>Over the past couple of weeks, the two sides have made a variety of offers and counter-offers, starting with a more than $3 trillion plan from Democrats that would have increased tax revenues by $1.3 trillion in exchange for further cuts in agency budgets, a change in the measure used to calculate cost-of-living increases for Social Security beneficiaries, and curbs on the growth of Medicare and Medicaid.</p><p>"We put on the table a proposal that required tough compromises on both sides, and they never did that," said Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., the only House Democrat on the panel to participate in late-stage bipartisan talks.</p><p>Republicans countered with a $1.5 trillion plan that included a potential breakthrough — $250 billion in higher taxes gleaned as Congress passes a future tax reform measure. The plan was trashed by Democrats, however, who said it would have lowered tax rates for the wealthy too far while eliminating tax breaks that chiefly benefit the middle class.</p></p> Sun, 20 Nov 2011 21:29:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/debt-talks-brink-failure-94214 Emanuel goes after city debtors http://www.wbez.org/story/emanuel-goes-after-city-debtors-92836 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-October/2011-10-05/AP081118062678 J. Scott Applewhite.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday announced another crackdown on people who owe the city money.</p><p>If you have unpaid parking tickets, or bank property fees and fines you haven't taken care of yet, Mayor Emanuel said it's time to pay up. His administration said it's taking new steps to collect on some of the city's debt.</p><p>Among them are improved tax audit collections, stricter enforcement on business permits and licenses, and even lawsuits filed against the worst offenders. One Chicagoan apparently owes $87,000 in parking tickets.</p><p>Emanuel said this whip-cracking will bring an additional $33 million to the city in 2012. He's going to need it as he prepares to outline his budget next week. Chicago's projected deficit for next year tops $635 million.</p><p>On Tuesday Emanuel announced a crackdown on city employees who owe money. He said those who don't comply immediately will face disciplinary action.</p></p> Wed, 05 Oct 2011 11:27:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/emanuel-goes-after-city-debtors-92836 How much do debt ratings matter? http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-08-08/how-much-do-debt-ratings-matter-90295 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/npr_story/photo/2011-August/2011-08-09/frank_dodd_103019334_8094559.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Standard & Poor's moved to downgrade housing lenders Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and a handful of insurance companies Monday — all in connection to Friday's credit downgrade of long-term U.S. debt.</p><p>There's a lot of speculation about how much these risk downgrades are weighing on stock markets and whether they will continue to ripple through the economy. But there are systemic reasons that ratings matter less than they have in recent years.</p><p>Conventional wisdom says a U.S. downgrade would make Treasuries riskier. It would make yields — or interest rates — rise.</p><p>In fact, bond markets did the opposite on Monday. In spite of S&P's higher risk assessment of U.S. debt, demand for Treasuries kept flooding in.</p><p>The easy explanation for this is that Europe is consumed with its own debt crisis, which makes the U.S. the safer bet. But the significance of ratings has also changed.</p><p>"Ratings are becoming less important across the board," says Kent Smetters, a professor at the Wharton School.</p><p>He says ratings were more powerful just a few years ago. They amplified the boom, then the bust of mortgage securities.</p><p>"The ratings really played a key role in getting a lot of capital into the mortgage market," Smetters says. "That has obviously retrenched quite a bit. Insurance companies today do not put a lot of capital to work based on ratings agencies alone."</p><p>The Dodd-Frank financial reform bill passed a year ago is also responsible for taking the importance of ratings down a peg. The law requires banks and insurance companies, for example, to hold more capital based on the risks of their assets. The riskier their assets, the more money they have to keep on hand.</p><p>In the past, regulators measured that risk using ratings like those by S&P and Moody's. But the new law, once fully implemented, will change that.</p><p>Risks of all sorts of securities will be measured in other ways — for example, internal assessments — but they won't be pegged to a ratings agency's verdict.</p><p>The Federal Reserve is underscoring the move away from ratings agencies. Soon after S&P announced its downgrade on Friday, the Fed said it would not require banks and other institutions to hold more capital because of the change.</p><p>Ratings used to also guide a lot of institutional investors, but that doesn't happen much anymore.</p><p>"I could see few, if any instances in which pension funds would need to rush to sell any assets as a result of the downgrade of the United States Treasury debt," says Keith Brainard, research director for the National Association of State Retirement Administrators.</p><p>Brainard says that over the past two decades, pensions have changed the language of their investment guidelines to rely less on ratings.</p><p>Analysts point to other reasons people have lost faith in ratings in recent years. They cite a 2002 downgrade that had no impact on Japan. They say ratings agencies acted long after bond markets had digested state budget problems in California or Illinois.</p><p>"The markets do not believe that S&P is right," says Karen Petrou, managing director of Federal Financial Analytics.</p><p>She says if anything, people are jumping from stock markets into Treasuries because of their relative safety.</p><p>"The alternative to Treasuries is the mattress," she says.</p><p>Petrou says she believes investors over the weekend got spooked that stock markets would fall, and that's what triggered a stock sell-off, not the downgrade itself.</p><p>"The markets are so volatile right now that forecasting any long-term impact on mortgage rates or car interest rates, I think it's premature," she says.</p><p>If the economy is a plane, she says, the ratings system measures altitude. And it's broken, but so is the landing gear, and the engine isn't working, either. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. </p> Mon, 08 Aug 2011 15:08:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/2011-08-08/how-much-do-debt-ratings-matter-90295 Stocks tumble following S&P downgrade of U.S. credit rating http://www.wbez.org/story/stocks-tumble-following-sp-downgrade-us-credit-rating-90245 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-August/2011-08-08/Wall St Sign_Flickr_Alex E. Proimos.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><strong>Updated 8/8/11 at 4:00p.m.CT</strong></p><p>The Dow Jones Industrial Average posted one of its biggest single day losses in history Monday as the Dow dipped below the 11,000 mark for the first time since October, 2010.&nbsp;</p><p>Similar declines were posted on the S&amp;P 500 and the Nasdaq, each of which fell by more than 6 percent.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>The declines capped a 24-hour rout in global markets in the first official trading day after Standard &amp; Poor's downgraded the U.S. credit rating for the first time.</p><p>S&amp;P cut the long-term debt rating for the U.S. by one notch late Friday. The downgrade wasn't unexpected, but it comes when investors are already nervous about a weak U.S. economy, European debt problems and Japan's recovery from its March earthquake.</p><p>Prices for Treasurys rose because they're still seen as one of the few safe investments. Gold topped a record $1,700 per ounce for the first time.</p><p>Asian and European stocks also were down Monday. The downgrade of U.S. debt is overshadowing bond purchases that the European Central bank is making to help Italy and Spain avoid defaulting on their debts.</p><p><strong>Obama seeks to calm markets</strong></p><p>President Barack Obama says the U.S. always is and always has been a AAA country, despite its rating agency downgrade. He said also the U.S. didn't need a rating agency to tell it that its political system was having trouble functioning.</p><p>Speaking at the White House on the Standard &amp; Poor's downgrade, Obama renewed a plea to Congress to take action in September of help create jobs and cushion Americans from a still weak economy.</p><p>Obama said financial markets around the world "still believe our credit is AAA. I and the world's investor's agree."</p><p><strong>Assessing the meaning of the S&amp;P downgrade</strong></p><p>The ratings downgrade announced late Friday came after the Dow Jones industrial average had recorded its worst week since 2009. A managing director at Standard &amp; Poor's said Monday that he has absolutely no second thoughts about the credit ratings agency's decision to cut the U.S. debt rating.</p><p>With global stocks sinking early in the day, S&amp;P's David Beers said on ABC's <em>Good Morning America </em>Monday that the agency's decision was based on several factors, including damage done to the U.S. reputation over the controversy surrounding the debt ceiling and concerns that underlying public finances are on an unsustainable path.</p><p>Asked if he had any second thoughts about the downgrade, Beers said "absolutely not."</p><p>While much has been made about the Treasury Department's claim that S&amp;P acted on an analysis that had a $2 trillion error, Beers rebuffed the notion during an appearance on CNN. "This idea that we made a $2 trillion error is simply a smoke screen for the unhappiness about our decision," he said.</p><p>Beers did seem to try to alleviate concern about the downgrade, saying it was "a very small diminution, if you like, in the credit standing of the United States."</p><p>"This is not a catastrophic decline in the U.S.'s credit-worthiness," he added.</p><p>S&amp;P downgraded the U.S. rating for the first time Friday, cutting the rating to AA+ from AAA. Two other ratings agencies - Moody's and Fitch - are for now keeping the AAA rating for U.S. debt.</p><p><strong>Impact on state and municipal debt</strong></p><p>Officials at Standard &amp; Poor's say they plan to indicate how local and state governments, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and insurers will be affected by the rating agency's downgrade of long-term U.S. debt.</p><p>S&amp;P officials told reporters Monday that the agency is looking at key sectors that are linked to the U.S. debt, and will announce "shortly" how those ratings might be affected.</p><p>The officials did not name any specific governments or insurance groups. But they said AAA-rated insurance groups, government-sponsored enterprises and state and local governments affected by possible consolidation of programs in Washington would likely be reviewed.</p><p><strong>Fed meeting Tuesday</strong></p><p>Meanwhile, a regular meeting of the Federal Reserve Board's Federal Open Market Committee is scheduled for Tuesday.&nbsp; While most analysts don't expect the Fed to take any action during the meeting, many will be closely watching comments from Fed chairman Ben Bernanke following the meeting for clues about future monetary policy.</p></p> Mon, 08 Aug 2011 13:32:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/stocks-tumble-following-sp-downgrade-us-credit-rating-90245