KeatsConnelly Cross-Border Weekly Best of the Web 2015-7-10

web-search-greyEvery week we share news stories, blog articles and other interesting stuff from around the web that received the most views, shares, comments and overall interest on various KeatsConnelly social media outlets.

This week’s articles bounce around beginning with a dire outlook on the Canadian economy, then welcome news regarding a scam frequently experienced in the United States. The next article shares positive performance for home prices, and the final article provides an interesting look at the ability (or lack thereof) of experts to predict interest rate movements.

Canada is already in a recession, says Bank of America, and the loonie is set to get hammered (www.financialpost.com) – Bank of America Merrill Lynch has become the first bank to call for a Canadian recession this year. Economist Emanuella Enenajor and her team now say that Canada’s economy will shrink by 0.6 per cent in the second quarter, following a 0.6 per cent contraction in the first. The definition of a recession is two consecutive quarters of contraction. A recession sets up the Bank of Canada for another rate cut this year, said Enenajor, and she expects that the downturn will hammer the Canadian dollar — knocking it down to just under 77 cents U.S. by early 2016, the lowest level in more than a decade…

IRS Phone Scam Ringleader Gets 14-Year Sentence (www.accountingtoday.com) – A scammer who organized a scheme in which taxpayers were threatened with calls purporting to come from the Internal Revenue Service and the FBI demanding payment has been sentenced to 14 years in prison. Sahil Patel was sentenced to 175 months in prison and $1 million in forfeiture for his role in organizing the U.S. side of a massive fraud and extortion ring run through various “call centers” located in India, through which Patel and his co-conspirators impersonated American law enforcement officials and threatened victims with arrest and financial penalties unless those victims made payments to avoid purported charges…

Home prices race up, annual growth at 10-month high (www.marketwatch.com) – Home prices rose in May during the hot spring sales market, pushing annual growth to a 10-month high, according to a report released Tuesday. With demand butting against a relatively low supply of homes available for sale, a gauge of housing prices increased 1.7% in May, while year-over-year growth rose to 6.3%, the fastest annual pace since July, said CoreLogic, an Irvine, Calif.–based analysis firm. Gains were “fairly widely distributed across the country,” and 10 states, including the likes of Texas and New York, hit records for home prices. In April, prices in eight states reached records…

Interest rate forecasters are shockingly wrong almost all of the time (www.businessinsider.com) – Most interest rate forecasters are wrong most of the time. Very wrong. The chart below is from Jeff Gundlach’s presentation on Tuesday, comparing the US 10-year yield to median economist forecasts over the past five years. The black line is the 10-year yield, and the colored lines are the paths that economists thought rates would take. Clearly, these forecasters were wrong most of the time, as there were only a few instances of convergence between both lines…

Come back next week for more interesting news and articles. Enjoy your weekend!

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