September 20, 2013
According to a study out of the University of Hong Kong, suicide trends in 54 countries have risen with an estimated additional 5,000 deaths annually.
Data from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the gross domestic product (GDP) calculated against deaths ruled as suicide showed that in 2009 37% higher unemployment rates contributed to a 3.3% increase in global suicide rates for men – which translate to 5,000 deaths per year.
As the GDP fell, suicide rates appeared to rise.
On the American continent, in 18 countries, 2,700 to 3,700 additional deaths were recorded as unemployment rates rose to 101%. The age range of those taking their lives was 45 to 64.
In European countries, 2,400 to 3,500 deaths were estimated to have correlated with a 35% rise in unemployment claims. The younger generation, ages 15 – 24, were committing suicide as opposed to the older generations in the Americas.
There was no measureable change in the global suicide rate for women.
Researchers explained: “Men are more likely to be the main earner in the family and thus more affected by the recession than women. They might experience a greater degree of shame in the face of unemployment and are less likely to seek help.”
Overall, researchers obtained information on:
• 15 -24, newly employed
• 25 – 44, early career
• 45 – 64, late career
• 65+, post-retirement
According to the study: “After the 2008 economic crisis, rates of suicide increased in the European and American countries studied, particularly in men and in countries with higher levels of job loss.”
Recently, Wells Fargo announced they will be removing 1,800 jobs in their home loan department because less new mortgages are being signed.
Tim Solan, chief financial officer for Wells Fargo spoke at an investor’s conference in San Francisco wherein he explained that his bank “had laid off 3,000 employees.
Solan said that Wells Fargo expects to take in “$80 billion in home loans in the third quarter, nearly 30 percent below its second-quarter figure.”
Along with Wells Fargo, other banks have stated major layoffs in the mortgage department, such as Bank of America (BoA) who laid off 2,000 employees.
Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank (FRB), spoke last week on their quantitative easing program entitled QE Infinity.
Bernanke said that the FRB will continue their bond-purchasing scheme as is without slowing down.
Last July, the FRB announced the implementation of new standards called “Base III accord” which is being sold to the public as a means to cushion the banks against expected “severe economic downturns”.
This is part of stricter capital regulations that will facilitate long-term changes in a global effort to prop-up global financial institutions.
The Fed has calculated assets and risks. Their answer is to severely restrict lending.
Outlined in the rules, mortgages are considered too complex and therefore their application in the financial scheme would need to be limited.
This means that local, regional and community banks will have to downscale their lending practices.
The international agreement Bernanke alluded to is touted as a way to prevent another financial crisis, as was seen in 2008.
As families are displaced by foreclosures, and face the real prospect of homelessness, the technocrats have devised the Living Cities project (LCP) that seeks through private funding “to improve the lives of low-income people and the cities where they live” by facilitating the building of new shoebox apartments.
This organization is headed by:
• Morgan Stanley
• JP Morgan
• The Ford Foundation
• Bank of America
• The Rockefeller Foundation
While working with families victimized by subprime lending and the foreclosures debacle, Living Cities has 10 projects that acquire properties to keep their intrinsic value up and discourage the breakdown of ability for future investments by potential stakeholders.
With respect to affordable living for displaced families, the advent of the micro apartment is quickly becoming a viable option for those who have no other choice.
Those who have fallen victim to the mortgage-backed securities (MBS) scheme, and lost their home are facing tough choices.
As some Americans are facing homelessness, the city council in Columbia, South Carolina have approved the new city plan entitled, the Emergency Homeless Response (HER) that mandates homeless residents be removed from the downtown areas and placed in encampments that will be patrolled by the local police departments.
This means that 1,518 residents will be rounded up and placed in controlled environments to “control the local homeless population”.
Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist for the government-owned Freddie Mac, said : “Retail sales rose 0.2 percent in August, which was nearly half of July’s 0.4 percent increase. In addition, industrial production in August grew 0.4 percent, less than the market consensus forecast. And lastly, consumer sentiment fell for the second consecutive month in September to the lowest reading since April. This, in part, was why the Federal Reserve chose to maintain its MBS and bond-buying program at its September 12th and 13th monetary policy committee meeting. It also cited the tightening of financial conditions observed in recent months, which in the case of the housing market means the rise in mortgage rates since May.”
Allen believes “its a good sign from an economic perspective, that the economy is coming around and people are feeling better.”