Iraq Is Safer Than California

Here's some reading for a Friday afternoon:

It's riskier to lend money to California than to Iraq, according to an analysis by CMA Sovereign Risk Monitor. Venezuela, Argentina and Greece are at the top of the list, by the way. California is seventh, Iraq is tenth. (Hat tip: Marginal Revolution)

It's cheaper to adopt a boy than a girl, according to this study of how adoptive parents' gender and racial preferences affect the adoption market. The Economist's Free Exchange blog hashes out the implications.

All those investigations of all those banks may signal a move toward another "global settlement," where a bunch of banks make a deal with a bunch of regulators and prosecutors, this morning's New York Times reports. Felix Salmon points out that a settlement is unlikely to come before Congress passes a financial-reform bill; the settlement could be used to close gaps in the legislation, he suggests.



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