• Steve H. Hanke
    02/11/2016 - 16:08
    The burgeoning literature contains a great deal of hype, which validates the 95% Rule: 95% of what is written about economics and finance is either wrong or irrelevant.

Great Depression

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The Bubble Finance Cycle - What Our Keynesian School Marm Doesn’t Get, Part 1





The world of Bubble Finance economies created by the Fed and other central banks is fundamentally different than that prevailing under the “Lite Touch” monetary policies which preceded the Greenspan era. The problem today is that the PhDs running the Fed have an economic model which is a relic of the Lite Touch era. It is not only utterly irrelevant in today’s casino driven system, but is actually tantamount to a blindfold. It causes them to look at a dashboard full of lagging indicators like jobs and GDP components, while ignoring the explosive leading indicators starring them in the face on CNBC. The clueless inhabitants of the Eccles Building do not recognize that they have created a world in which Wall Street supersedes main street.

 
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The Rise Of Trump & Sanders - Distrust & Anger Ripples Across America





This may sound like one of those generation gap stories, where older folks complain about the “kids” doing their own thing and the kids not trusting “anyone over 30.” It’s not. From sea to shining sea, distrust and anger ripples across America. Older age groups like to criticize millennials: they’re spoiled, have a sense of entitlement. Actually, they should look in the mirror, as they’re leaving those who will follow one hell of a mess.

 
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Obama Explains Why 'The Greatest Corporate Power Grab In History' Is "The Right Thing For America"





While some have called The Trans-Pacific Partnership, "the most brazen corporate power grab in American history," President Obama tells Americans - in an Op-Ed released today - that "it’s the right thing to do for our economy, for working Americans and for our middle class" Despite indepedent analysis that appears to confirm  the creeping corporate coup d’état along with the final evisceration of national sovereignty, President Obama explains - in simple words - ObamaTrade is "a trade deal that helps working families get ahead," due, inhis opinion,  to the "toughest global labor laws" which will allow American workers to compete on a so-called "level playing field."

 
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How The Easy-Money Boom Ends...





The funds have flowed in a torrent into stocks, bonds, and real estate, just as 1940's NY Fed President Allan Sproul predicted. That flood of easy-money created the delta of plenty in which we live today. Unfortunately, it’s not likely to continue, because funny things happen when you do funny things to money.

 
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A Stunning Admission From A BOE Central Banker: This Is What The Coming "Helicopter Money" Will Look Like





“Consider for example a tax cut for households and businesses that is explicitly coupled with incremental Bank of Japan purchases of government debt – so that the tax cut is in effect financed by money creation”

- Ben Bernanke, Some Thoughts on Monetary Policy in Japan, 2003

 
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War, Big Government, & Lost Freedom





The lasting legacy of the First World War has been the rationales and implementations of paternalist Big Government in the Western world, with its diminished recognition and respect for individual liberty, free association, freedom of competitive trade and exchange, reduced civil liberties and weakened impartial rule of law. From this has followed the regulating and redistributing State, which includes political control and manipulation of the monetary and banking systems to serve those in governmental power and others who feed at the trough of governmental largess. It is a legacy that will likely take another century to completely overcome and reverse, if we are able to devise a strategy for restoring the idea and ideal of a society of liberty.

 
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How The Global Debt Bubble Is Crushing Commodity Prices





Why is the price of oil so low now? In fact, why are all commodity prices so low? We see the problem as being an affordability issue that has been hidden by a growing debt bubble. As this debt bubble has expanded, it has kept the sales prices of commodities up with the cost of extraction (Figure 1), even though wages have not been rising as fast as commodity prices since about the year 2000. That period is ending as the productivity of additional debt is falling.

 
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Hugh Hendry: "Today We Would Advise You That You Don't Panic!"





"It is ironic that we are perhaps best known for advising “that you panic”. However, if you are anxious at the wrong time it can prove very painful. Today, we would advise that you don’t panic!
... by withdrawing the “Greenspan put” and using their asset purchase schemes to eviscerate any notion of value, the authorities have paradoxically created a safer yet more paranoid market."

- Hugh Hendry

 
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A Brief History Of Crime: How The Fed Became The Undemocratic, Corrupt & Destructive Force It Is Today





Our ancestors were wiser and far more educated than modern Americans about the dangers posed by a centralized, monopolistic system charged with the creation and distribution of money, and our society and economy have paid a very heavy price for its ignorance. Indeed, some of today’s Fed critics aren’t even aware that the U.S. Central Bank originally had far less power than it does today. As concerned as they were, its early critics could never have imagined how perverted its mandate would become in the subsequent 100 years. A mandate that has now made it the single most powerful and destructive force on planet earth.

 
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The Power Of Fear & The Gullibility Of The Masses





It was 77 years ago this week that Orson Welles struck terror into the hearts of Americans with his live radio broadcast of the HG Wells classic War of the Worlds. What struck me while watching the PBS retrospective were the similarities between then and now. The gullibility of the masses, the power of fear, the overreaction by the media, busy bodies calling for the government to do something, and the effectiveness of propaganda are all commonalities between that Fourth Turning and today’s Fourth Turning.

 
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The Dire Societal Consequences Of Stability-Obsessed Keynesians





We will be the first to admit that yield curve inversion is not the only factor causing recessions, but through the credit channel it can be an important contributor. Depending on the importance of the credit channel, the Federal Reserve, by pegging the short term rate at zero, have essentially removed one recessionary market mechanism that used to efficiently clear excesses within the financial system. While stability obsessed Keynesians on a quest to the permanent boom regard this as a positive development, the rest of us obviously understand that false stability breeds instability.

 

 
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3 Things: "You Should Buy, Professionals Need To Sell"





Every day when you flip on the media, there is someone telling you that now is the time to "buy" into the market. Of course, if you are buying, then who is selling? The only "net buyers" of equities this year have been "individuals," while "professional" firms have been "net sellers." This is the epitome of the classic "smart money/dumb money" analysis where individuals are used by institutions to offload positions that are no longer optimal. The question is with corporate profits and earnings declining, weak economic data, and the threat of tighter monetary policy - will individuals once again be left "holding the bag" while institutions derisk portfolios in advance of the next decline?

 
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Is The Yield Curve Still A Dependable Signal?





To the extent the Federal Reserve decides to increase interest rates, it should be apparent that such a move would be inconsistent with their prior actions. In fact, it may likely be a desperate effort to re-load the monetary policy gun as opposed to a signal of domestic economic strength. Not only is this a departure from the past, this would lead many to question the Fed’s motives. It is worth keeping in mind that blind trust and confidence in the Fed has propelled many markets much higher than fundamentals justify. The bottom line is that NIM and the Taylor Rule-adjusted curve are both flashing warning signs of economic recession, while the traditional yield curve signal is waving the all clear flag.

 
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