Pemex Oil Still Playing Monopoly at 75… But Not Much Longer; Run on Russia: Property Values on the Rise; Markets Tiptoe up to Fed Announcement Wednesday

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Pemex Oil Still Playing Monopoly at 75… But Not Much Longer (Bloomberg)

Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex Oil) is Mexico’s 75-year old state run energy monopoly. But if Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has his way, it won’t live to see a 76th birthday. It is his hope that by allowing multinational oil companies to rejoin Mexico’s energy market, an eight-year slide in Mexican crude output will end. In a best-case scenario, President Pena Nieto hopes his country would experience a resource revolution similar to that in the United States. The biggest hurdle remaining for foreign oil companies to return to Mexico is the country’s constitution — which cannot be amended to allow foreign company participation until September… Until then, if you’re a Pemex investor, you may want to start preparing an exit strategy.

Run on Russia: Property Values on the Rise (CNBC)

In the not-so-distant past, Russian oligarchs had to look beyond their own borders for luxury real estate locations befitting men and women of their stature. That’s not the case any longer, at least according to Olga Tarakanova, head of City Sales at Knight Frank Russia, who told CNBC that new luxury digs being built in Moscow are comparable to high-end properties in London or Paris. And they’re beginning to sport the prices to match. “The value of most properties on the market during the last 3-4 years has risen twice… There is a great opportunity to earn on investments ranging from 30 to 70 percent per annum in Moscow,” Tarakanova said. That opportunity, however, is limited to investors with oligarch-sized checkbooks.

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Markets Tiptoe up to Fed Announcement Wednesday (AP)

For the last couple of weeks, global markets have sat on pins and needles awaiting this week’s Fed meeting. The major concern is how much longer the United States will continue its quantitative-easing (QE) policy of buying $85 billion worth of debt monthly. Should the Bernanke Boys announce a tapering (reduction) in buying — even if it is months down the road — investors could turn and run for the exits. That reality certainly was the case yesterday, when an article in the Financial Times prompted some selling in U.S. markets — and that was based purely on speculation. The uncertainty will end Wednesday afternoon when the Fed issues a statement.

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Stocks trimmed their gains today as investors expressed concern on whether the Federal Reserve may signal that it will scale back its stimulus at the conclusion of its next policy meeting.

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