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Daily Archives: September 22, 2013

Rare Earth Elements in National Defense

CRS – Rare Earth Elements in National Defense: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress. Valerie Bailey Grasso, Specialist in Defense Acquisition. September 17, 2013

“Some Members of Congress have expressed concern over U.S. acquisition of rare earth materials composed of rare earth elements used in various components of defense weapon systems. Rare earth elements consist of 17 elements on the periodic table, including 15 elements beginning with atomic number 57 (lanthanum) and extending through number 71 (lutetium), as well as two other elements having similar properties (yttrium and scandium). These are referred to as “rare” because although relatively abundant in total quantity, they appear in low concentrations in the earth’s crust and extraction and processing is both difficult and costly. In 2010, a series of events and press reports highlighted what some referred to as the rare earth “crisis…Some policymakers were concerned that China had cut its rare earth exports and appeared to be restricting the world’s access to rare earths, with a nearly total U.S. dependence on China for rare earth elements, including oxides, phosphors, metals, alloys, and magnets. Additionally, some policymakers had expressed growing concern that the United States had lost its domestic capacity to produce strategic and critical materials, and its implications for U.S. national security.”

Jobless rate up in 18 states, down in 17 in August – payroll jobs up in 29 states, down in 20

News release: “Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in August. Eighteen states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate increases, 17 states had decreases, and 15 states had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Thirty-six states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate decreases from a year… Continue Reading

Short-Term Energy Outlook

U.S. Energy Information Administration: Short-Term Energy Outlook September 10, 2013 “Monthly average crude oil prices increased for the fourth consecutive month in August 2013, as supply disruptions in Libya increased and concerns over the conflict in Syria intensified. The U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) forecast for Brent crude oil spot price, which averaged $108 per barrel during… Continue Reading

Twtrland – Search any skill, location or name

“Twtrland visualizes social footprints to help you discover new people, understand their impact and find better ways to connect and increase your network.” [Robert Ambrogi] “See a visual snapshot of your online presence on twitter and instagram. Unfold influence metrics, audience demographics, close network and much more. Find Influencers: +60,000 Skills, City Resolution – Easily find the true influencers in any… Continue Reading

Shooting massacre survivors: ‘Thoughts and prayers’ aren’t enough

Via WaPo by Eli Saslow, September 21: “The survivors took their places onstage from memory, because by now they knew exactly where to go. The shooting victims in wheelchairs entered first, rolling into the front row, wearing bracelets engraved with the words “Aurora,” “Oak Creek” or “Virginia Tech.” Behind them stood a dozen people in black T-shirts… Continue Reading

How mapping tech helped beat back the Rim Fire in California

Article via The Verge – By Russell Brandom: “The past month’s Rim Fire blazed through more than a quarter million acres of land in California, but the tensest moment came on August 27th, when the fire came close to threatening San Francisco’s water supply. If the blaze had advanced any closer than it did, it would start dumping… Continue Reading

International capital flows and development: financial openness matters

Working Paper No. 472: International capital flows and development: financial openness matters – Dennis Reinhardt, Luca Antonio Ricci and Thierry Tressel, June 2013. Bank of England. “Does capital flow from rich to poor countries? We revisit the Lucas paradox and ask whether it results from a lack of capital account openness. We find that, when… Continue Reading

Central counterparties and the topology of clearing networks

​Working Paper No. 480 Central counterparties and the topology of clearing networks, Marco Galbiati and Kimmo Soramäki, August 2013. Bank of England. “Given a network of client-clearer relationships, we define central clearing as a function transforming bilateral trading exposures into centrally cleared exposures.  By using numerical simulations, we study how this function is affected by the network’s… Continue Reading

Consolidated worldwide external claims of UK-owned monetary financial institutions

News release and statistical tables: “UK-owned monetary financial institutions and their branches and subsidiaries worldwide reported an increase in consolidated foreign claims on an ultimate risk basis of $16.4 billion during Q2 2013, to stand at $3,918.3 billion. The rise was more than accounted for by an increase on Developed Countries, up $60.6 billion to stand… Continue Reading

White Paper – Avoiding BYOD Legal Issues

Avoiding BYOD Legal Issues – Route1 Inc. September 2013 “Today’s business landscape is facing emerging legal issues stemming from bring your own device (BYOD) initiatives. The shift towards the use of personal computing devices (laptops, tablets, smartphones and now watches) to conduct business in theory is a win-win strategy for both the Enterprise and its employees.… Continue Reading