Confirming our ongoing observations that the pursuit of leveraged beta is the only game in town ("Levered Beta Uber Alles: NYSE Borse Margin Debt Jumps To Three Year Highs, Investor Net Worth Remains At Record Lows") is this surprising confession by hedge fund titan Carl Icahn, who not only warns that the levels of leverage achieved in the current centrally planned regime is as bad as it ever was, and that some form of Glass-Steagall should return, but that, stated simply, the entire "system is not working properly." His warning, stated in a very politically correct fashion, is that "there could be another major problem" either next week, or next year. Which is not surprising: after all not only has anything changed, but the very same drivers of risk that nearly crashed capitalism in Q3 2008, are back and arguably stronger than ever. That the Fed is the last recourse mechanism preventing an all out systemic wipe out probably should not be a source of comfort to anyone. In the end, the Fed, as any other authoritarian institution promoting central planning, will always lose.
"I do think that there could be another major problem. Now, will it happen next week, next year, i don't know and certainly nobody knows, but i don't think that the system is working properly. I really find it amazing that we're almost back to where it was, where there's so much leverage going on in the investment banks today. There's just way too much leverage and way too much risk-taking, with other people's money. I know a lot of my friends on Wall Street will hate my saying this, but the Glass Steagall thing or something like it wasn't a bad thing. In other words, a bank should be a bank. Investment bankers should be investment bankers. Investment bankers serve a purpose, raising capital and whatever, but i think today, and i know a lot of people won't like hearing this, what's going on today, i think we're going back in the same trap, and i will tell you that very few people understood how toxic and how risky those derivatives were. CDS were extremely risky the way they were used, and you look at Wall Street and you say, hey, they did it, but then you can't really blame the Wall Street guys. You can't blame a tiger. If you take a fierce man-eating tiger and put him in with a lot of sheep, you can't blame the tiger for eating the sheep. And that's the nature of the tiger. And that's the nature of Wall Street. I'm not saying they're bad but that's their nature, and the government should regulate finance."