Ed’s Daily Notes for September 25th   Leave a comment

Bloomberg: Cruz Talk-a-Thon Seen as Opportunism Lifts Obamacare Foes

Freshman Republican Senator Ted Cruz probably doesn’t have enough votes to cut off funding for the 2010 health-care law under a stopgap U.S. spending bill.

Yet the college debate champ may achieve other goals with his campaign against the health initiative: Raising his national profile and rallying support among the small-government, Tea Party faction of a divided Republican party.

Cruz is showing no sign that he’ll retreat from his vow to use a spending measure as leverage to halt implementation of President Barack Obama’s signature health-care law. That’s even as a talk-a-thon he began yesterday, during which he killed time reading Dr. Seuss’s “Green Eggs and Ham” and referencing the reality TV show “Duck Dynasty,” alienated many fellow Republican senators, including Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

“I intend to speak in support of defunding Obamacare until I am no longer able to stand, to do everything that I can to help Americans stand together and recognize this grand experiment three and a half years ago is quite simply not working,” Cruz said at the outset of 16 hours of remarks on the Senate floor that continued early today in Washington.

Viewed by critics as an opportunist and by allies as an ideological purist, Cruz, 42, has ruffled many feathers in Washington since arriving in January. His delay tactics this week could help push the federal government to the brink of a shutdown Oct. 1.

While I agree with Cruz’s view on Obamacare, I think this is the wrong time and place to be doing this. I see what Cruz is doing as an impersonation of Rand Paul’s filibuster. But why would Cruz filibuster a spending bill which he supports? That is the very definition of cutting off your nose to spite your face…

Truthfully, Cruz strikes me as an egotist more than an ideologue.

Financial Times: Fed probes for leaks ahead of policy news

The US Federal Reserve is contacting news organisations to check they followed its procedures after claims that some traders obtained early access to this month’s decision on monetary policy.

Chicago-based research firm Nanex said that asset prices moved at exactly 2pm in New York and Chicago when the decision was announced on September 18, although it would take 5 to 7 milliseconds for the data to travel from Washington.

Eric Hunsader, founder of Nanex, said: “The data clearly shows something that physically could not have happened … that FOMC news had to be in Chicago and New York before 2pm [eastern time].”

According to exchange data analysed by Nanex, about $800m in futures contracts were traded in Chicago. Mr Hunsader said that implied that either the information was sent to Chicago early or that someone had received it in advance.

The pattern of price movements is likely to add to concerns about whether so-called high-frequency trading firms gain an unfair advantage in the market from early access to government data.

Ya think?

Here is the really dumb part:

The Fed’s rules stipulate that news organisations may “make no public use … or other dissemination” of the documents which are provided to them in a locked room in Washington at 1.50pm ET “until the time the FRB has set for their public release”.

Oh well! Since they have a rule against it, that means everyone will follow it, right? Get real…

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Posted September 25, 2013 by edmcgon in Federal Reserve, News, Politics

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