What Others Are Saying

August 15, 2007

Stock markets all over have been rocked in the past fortnight by mounting concerns over the United States' subprime mortgage crisis, with the Singapore market losing some $50 billion of its market capitalization in 10 days.

Volatility has shot up and central banks have had to intervene, injecting large doses of cash into markets last Friday to prop up confidence and stave off a market crash.

Hopes are now high that the U.S. Federal Reserve - whose loose monetary policies earlier this decade were arguably the source of the problem - will now cut its short-term interest rates and ease the pressure in credit markets, possibly within the next fortnight. But is it really time to panic yet?

After reaching an all-time high of 14,000 last month, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has lost less than 7 percent in the recent sell-off and is still 6.2 percent up for the year.

After a stellar run stretching back four years to the end of the Iraq invasion in 2003, such a loss by any standards counts as nothing more than a correction, albeit a painful one.

Indeed, markets may have to endure more pain in the days ahead - but over the longer term, there appears no compelling reason for panic yet.

- The Business Times (Singapore)

At the National Constitution Center last month, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay told an audience that President Bush "really doesn't have a domestic policy" aside from his education program.

That's the legacy of Karl Rove, who will step down later this month after 6 1/2 years as Mr. Bush's top adviser.

Mr. Rove, 56, had the undeniable political genius to guide a winning presidential candidate in 2000. But then he squandered his creation by advocating divisive politics over broad-based policy at nearly every turn. He charted a course in which partisan politics became administration policy.

For too much of Mr. Bush's presidency, Mr. Rove failed him as an adviser of what works here at home. And the Republican Party that Mr. Rove sought to strengthen is weaker for it.

- The Philadelphia Inquirer

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