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Elaine, Great background on Japan and the inclination to function in a closed and secretive manner. I think it's a big part of how things got this way and why the US allowed it to happen in the years after WWII. We had a tiger by the tail.

Separately, a big corporate bond (hedge) fund bites the dust. Sowood Investments run by a former head of Harvard Management was taken over by Citadel Investments. Readers must once again wonder: hey this isn't a mortgage securities operation. Why should they have problems? This is what contagion is all about. Mortgage securities are the currency used for many of the deals done in the financial sphere.

People really need to scrutinize their holdings. Don't expect the cover to tell you what's in the book. These mortgage-backed products have very nearly saturated the air we breath.


I’ve tried to find some supporting information that your beloved plywood sheets are/have been affected by the softwood lumber dispute, no luck so far. I suspect that sheet product falls under the Anti-Dumping tariff structure.

Here’s the resulting agreement:

Framework agreement reached
Then, on April 26, 2006, came word that Canada and the United States had reached a framework agreement that could form the basis for an end to the dispute.
The framework agreement called for the U.S. to return about 80 per cent of the $5 billion in duties that U.S. Customs has collected in the previous four years. Canadian-sourced lumber would also be kept to no more than its current 34 per cent share of the U.S. softwood market.
Canada will also collect an export tax on softwood lumber exported to the United States if the price drops below $355 a thousand board feet.
The following day, Prime Minister Stephen Harper told the House of Commons that Canada and the United States had agreed on a seven-year deal to end the dispute.



So it’s not just a strong loonie boosting lumber prices, the Coalition for Fair Lumber Imports (CFLI) and your own government grievously injured by our low stumpage fees has seen to that.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

Probably right, Canuck. All I know is, we got inflation with a crashing housing market! This is very unusual.

I saw the news about the hedge fund, Cato. Yes, it is spreading relentlessly like a flesh-eating virus in a horror movie.

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I like ANMJ on FB & just subscribed to the email feed! :)

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