On the back of last month's terrible jobs report — a measly 18,000 jobs added — comes more bad news for the U.S. economy. This time it's from overseas: Italy and China, to be exact. Greece is in a state of total crisis, Portugal and Spain are nearing major debt problems of their own, and you can now add Italy to that list. Tomorrow, European finance ministers will meet in Brussels to discuss Italy's heavy debt load and the increasing risk premium investors are demanding to lend the country money. In the short run, such instability in Europe does send more investors running to U.S. Treasuries, meaning cheaper borrowing for the United States. But the increased skittishness in the bond markets will be a much more immediate problem come early August if Congress has still not raised the debt ceiling — at which point we risk defaulting on the nation's debt obligations. More likely to affect American pockets directly is the 3 percent dip in Chinese imports last month, considering the more than $100 billion worth of goods the United States sends China every year. Slowing the breakneck speed of China's economy is an important step in avoiding collapse down the line, but that also means less money flowing our way right now. So, anyone have some good news to report?
Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/AFP/Getty Images
- 1. 20 Things Worth Knowing About Toronto’s Crack-Smoking Mayor, Rob Ford
- 2. Netflix Adultery Afflicts Half of Relationships, Says Netflix
- 3. Kim Kardashian’s Tortured, Swollen Feet: A Lament
- 4. Could Harvey Weinstein Make History With Three Black Best Actor Oscar Candidates?
- 5. Take Vulture’s Arrested Development Superfan Quiz
- 6. Cannes Day 3: Marion Cotillard, Eva Longoria, and an Extraordinary Dress Made of Biscuit Trays
- 7. Kids in the Hall Alum Scott Thompson on Hannibal and Why Being Gay Is Now Boring
- 8. Beyoncé Really Is Pregnant, Says E!
- 9. Cannes: Paris Hilton Cried While Watching The Bling Ring