West Africa isn't known for its political stability – but events in this critical region threaten to throw the whole area into chaos, with profound political and economic repercussions. Currently, the two hotspots are the Ivory Coast and Nigeria. The former only recently emerged from decades of brutal and intractable civil war, and that conflict… Read more.
General Financial News
Commodity prices have been on a steady surge for the past year – indeed, commodity futures investors did better than those in most other sectors across the span of 2010. Silver had a stand-out year, rising over 80 percent on the back of enthusiasm for precious metals that have industrial applications. Wheat, corn and soybeans… Read more.
Unprecedented and wide-ranging national protests in Egypt grabbed the attention of the global media this week, as the people of the Arab world's largest country poured onto the streets to protest against the economic injustices and the political repression they've lived under during the regime of president Hosni Mubarak. Mubarak took power after the assassination of… Read more.
In the wake of Tunisia's sudden, unexpected popular revolution, autocratic regimes across the Arab world are running scared. In Cairo, the U.S.-backed presidency of Hosni Mubarak has perhaps the most to lose. Yesterday, massive crowds gathered in Cairo's Midan Tahrir, the political and economic heart of the city that's bordered by the Mogamma (the central government… Read more.
The Ivory Coast is the world's primary supplier of cocoa beans – and its political turmoil is having a powerful effect on the global market for the chocolate base. The Ivorian Civil War ended in 2002, but the country remains perilously close to the brink of further violence. In October 2010, much-delayed elections finally took place.… Read more.
The president of Tunisia, Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, has been forced out of power after weeks of social unrest – and it seems that high food and commodity prices could have played a role. Ben Ali ruled the North African nation for nearly a quarter of a century, but anti-government sentiment rose sharply as conditions… Read more.
As 2011 begins in earnest, the threat of a global food crisis triggered by rising commodity prices and shrinking supplies seems more imminent than ever. Last year brought devastating drought and fires in the fertile, wheat-growing plains of Russia, flooding in Pakistan and a brutal spell of drought in Australia, and 2011 could be just… Read more.
The price of oil traded at its highest value in more than two years in New York as indications show the recovery from the economic recession is becoming stronger, Bloomberg reports. Futures for the commodity increased to their top level of $92.58 per barrel in New York on Monday following the U.S. factory index for… Read more.
Various stock future indexes increased on the first trading day of the new year, signaling to some that brighter days are ahead as the nation continues emerging from an economic recession, according to Bloomberg. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 14 points while the Standard & Poor 500 increased 0.50 points and the NASDAQ 100… Read more.
As 2011 kicked off this past weekend, so did the Tier 4 laws, which are federal regulations mandating emissions from tractors. Though farmers should benefit from higher crop prices in 2011, equipment dealers now face the challenge of selling machinery that is about 10 percent more expensive during an economic crisis, the Associated Press reports.… Read more.