Combine the rising regulatory burden with the decline of entrepreneurship, and you get a bubbling brew that is toxic to self-employment/small business.
Over the last two decades the Fed’s interventionism has created artificial booms and real busts. Their dreadful mistakes are “fixed” by currency debasement, lower interest rates, and money printing – creating even worse mistakes. They have successfully gutted the American economy and left a hollowed out shell. The coming collapse will be three pronged as stocks, bonds, and real estate are all simultaneously overvalued. Junk bonds are the canary in a coalmine. High end real estate in NYC has topped out. New and existing homes sales growth has stalled out. Retailers desperately slash prices to maintain sales, while destroying their profits. Corporate profits are falling. The stock market is teetering on the edge.
Hitler said often that the bigger the lie, the easier it would be [for the masses] to believe. This is no where more true than Forex.
To help Main Street, the Fed must stop incentivizing speculation over investment and end policies that have shifted wealth and income to the top of the wealth pyramid. Main Street's woes are largely structural: the high cost of regulations, the soaring cost of healthcare insurance, the artificial-scarcity costs imposed by cartels enforced by the federal government and the pressures generated by globalization and automation. The Fed can't solve those problems, but it can certainly stop enriching the already-super-wealthy at the expense of the rest of us.
It is vital to give proper consideration to the improper liberties that are being taken by those with “unwarranted influence” and “misplaced power”. Value extraction has replaced value creation in pursuit of short?term, self?serving benefits at the expense of long?term stability and durability of corporate America and therefore the country as a whole. As citizens, our obligation is to be well?informed, cognizant, outspoken and to vote. The words of men may temporarily suspend but they do not alter the laws of financial dynamics. The fundamentals always take precedence eventually.
For all intents and purposes, the National Security Agency has supposedly ceased its bulk collection of metadata from Americans’ phone calls, but read the fine print: nothing is going to change.
What should the rational investor do in an environment of ongoing financial repression? If you wanted to trigger a bank run, this is certainly how you might go about it.
- Brussels on Edge as Lockdown Continues (WSJ)
- Stocks Pare Decline as Crude Oil Erases Drop on Saudi Comments (BBG)
- Italy’s Eni Plans to Pump Arctic Oil, After Others Abandon the Field (WSJ)
- Treasuries Decline as Economists Say GDP to Be Revised Higher (BBG)
- Why the Housing Rebound Hasn’t Lifted the U.S. Economy Much (WSJ)
- Argentina Fever Is Back for Investors as Kirchner Rival Triumphs (BBG)
The Fed was out in force yesterday peddling some pretty heavy-duty malarkey about the up-coming rate liftoff at the December meeting..."If we begin to raise interest rates, that’s a good thing." That’s not a bad thing." Goldman is putting out the final mullet call for this Bubble Cycle because it knows that this bull is dying; that insiders still have massive amounts of stock winnings to unload; and that the clock is fast running out. The expiring clock is evident in the S&P 500’s one-year round trip to nowhere. Despite the fact that the Fed has ponied-up a stick save at every single meeting this year, the market’s 27 separate efforts to rally have all failed for the simple reason that the jig is up.
Westerners have a deep history of a culture of myths (see Joseph Campbell). We love to believe in Santa Claus, "The American Dream," the Tooth Fairy, housing market always goes up, and countless others. So it's easy for us to be 'terrorized' by a myth; that hiding behind every corner are evil 'terrorists' waiting to blow themselves up because 'they hate our freedoms.'
- Security jitters drive European investors back to safe havens (Reuters)
- Global Anti-ISIS Alliance Begins to Emerge (WSJ)
- Merkel says cancelling soccer match was 'responsible' decision (Reuters)
- Paris attacker may have had accomplice on journey through Balkans (Reuters)
- Drop Assad demands if you want to unite against Islamic State: Russia to West (Reuters)
- Putin sets up commission to combat terrorism financing (Reuters)
- Belgian Police 'Arrest' Public Enemy No.1 (Sky News)
- France Widens Crackdown at Home as Bombs Rain on Islamic State (BBG)
- Putin Goes From G-20 Pariah to Player at Obama Turkey Talk (BBG)
- Paris Attacks: 150 Raids as France Goes to 'War With Terrorism' (NBC)
- 'Rocket Launcher Found' In French Police Raids (Sky)
- Geopolitical worries lift oil after Paris attacks, but glut weighs (Reuters)
- Japan's economy falls back into recession again (BBC)
The perennial hopes of a strong retail shopping season are once again upon us. Given the current deflationary backdrop, small business spending pessimism, the sharp decline in imports and weak wage growth, it is quite likely that actual retail sales will likely disappoint the NRF's forecast of a "shopping season significantly above the 10-year average." But it is truly important to remember that for retailers all #BlackFridaysMatter
The real risk is that while debt is rising on both a relative and an absolute basis, EBITDA, or cash flow, of both junk companies as well as Investment Grades, has been declining for at least one year. Or rather, while junk-rated companies have seen their EBITDA decline consistently for the past 5 years, the big inflection point was early 2014 when IG EBITDA also plateaued and has since been declining.
The current stock market melt-up hardly qualifies as limp. Even the robo-machines and hyper-ventilating day traders apparently recognize that their job is to tag the May 2015 highs and then get out of the way. So when and as they complete their pointless mission, the question recurs as to why the posse of fools in the Eccles Building can’t see that they are inflating one hellacious financial bubble; and that when it blows it will deconstruct their entire 7-year project of make-pretend recovery.