Daily Digest 3/14 – Crypto Holds Security Risk, 1 in 5 Americans Have Crippling Medical Debt

Daily Digest

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by Daily Digest

Wednesday, March 14, 2018, 10:43 AM


Venezuela annual inflation exceeds 6,000 percent in Feb – National Assembly

Inflation during the month of February alone was 80 percent, opposition lawmakers said, amid an economic crisis in which millions of Venezuelans are unable to find or afford basic food and medicine.

This year’s tab for county pensions: $490 million (San Diego)

The contribution is almost $22 million more than supervisors deposited at this time last year. Over the same period, the so-called unfunded liability climbed by $53 million, from $3.318 billion to $3.371 billion, the county reported.

New retirees in Gardena, Pasadena and Riverside make $200,000 pensions

Pension costs have steadily consumed more of Los Angeles County’s operating budget, climbing from a 3 percent share of expenditures in 2002-03 to an 8.7 percent share in 2017-18, according to a report released in 2017 by the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research. As a result, more than a $1 billion has shifted away from other services, such as programs for immigrants, foster care and family services, according to the report.

Fiscal mess, tax hikes likely for New Jersey governor’s first budget

New Jersey’s other long-term problems still loom. The state has huge liabilities in its underfunded $76 billion public pension system, which was just 49 percent funded in fiscal 2016, according to the most recent data available.

Nearly 1 in 5 Americans Has Crippling Medical Debt

Medical debt is a leading cause of personal bankruptcy in the United States. Nearly one in five Americans have delinquent medical debt on their credit reports. That includes 1.2 million people in the Chicago area who owe nearly $1 billion, according to data compiled by Mike Antico of RIP Medical Debt.

Canadian household debt hits $1.8-trillion as report warns of domestic risk

The latest report by the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) said Canada’s credit-to-GDP gap and debt-service ratios have surpassed critical thresholds and are signalling red, pointing to vulnerabilities.

Central bank cryptocurrencies pose stability risk, says BIS

If the digital money was issued by one of the major central banks, this could even lead to cross-border panics as capital took flight from riskier assets and financial institutions in countries experiencing turmoil and into state-backed cryptocurrencies elsewhere.

High housing prices signal a danger of reckoning to come

Total outstanding US mortgage loans are now back at nearly $15tn, the same as at the 2008 peak. In the UK, the average London house price at the end of last year was £484,500, nearly two-thirds higher than at the pre-crisis peak.

US budget deficit jumped to $215.2 billion in February

For the first five months of this budget year, the deficit totals $391 billion, an increase of 11.5 percent from the same period a year ago. President Donald Trump’s new budget projects this year’s deficit will hit $873 billion, up a sharp 31.3 percent from last year’s imbalance of $665.8 billion.

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