Gross Domestic Product

Why Nations Fail

It's what you do with what you've got... "Yes, national prosperity has some correlation to the resources available to the State, but importantly, it's determined by how those resources are put to productive -- and fair -- use."

The End Of A Trend: Oil Prices And Economic Growth

Far from a sign of good things for the economy as whole, recently declining oil prices now tend to indicate a weakening economy that was already in a weak state. It turns out that the oil price and the economy are now in a very tight relationship, and we are going to be seeing them together a lot for a long time to come.

Why Japan's "Massive" ¥28 Trillion Fiscal Stimulus Plan Was A Disappointment

Last week, when details of Japan's "massive" JPY28 trillion stimulus plan emerged, we pointed out the "minor" snag that assured the plan would be a disappointment: only about JPY7 trillion of this amount would be in the form of new spending. Overnight, Japan finally revealed the full plan, and as expected it was met with significant disappointment by the market, which sent the Yen soaring to new multi-week highs and saw Japanese bond yields surging .

Satyajit Das Slams Policymaker Ignorance: "QE-Forever Cycle" Means Catastrophe Is Inevitable

"Policymakers have chosen to ignore the central issue of debt as they try to resuscitate activity," warns Satyajit Das in a shocking Op-Ed in today's FT, and with global central banks now printing $180 billion a month (and growing), "the global economy may now be trapped in a QE-forever cycle," confirming von Mises prescription that "there is no means of avoiding the final collapse..."

Euro Stocks Reverse Early Gains Dragged Lower By Slumping Banks; US Futures Flat; Crude Slides

Following last Friday's shocking weak US GDP print, Asian stocks jumped to an 11 month high on reduced prospects of a near-term rate hike, while the region also digested mostly encouraging in conflicting Chinese PMI data. European bank stocks initially rose following the release of the 2016 stress test then declined, tempering gains in global equity indexes, amid investor skepticism over the usefulness of stress-test results and weaker oil prices.

With All Eyes On Tonight's BOJ Announcement, A "Minor" Snag Emerges

With all eyes on the BOJ's decision in several hours, an announcement which is expected to contain some component of government deficit funding attached to it, or helicopter-lite, a "minor" snag has emerged in what Japan has affectionately titled the "emergency, peace of mind realization, overall spending measures" fiscal package, namely that only about a quarter of the total JPY 28 trillion in new stimulus is in the form of actual spending.

Chinese Stocks Sink Over Fears Regulators Will Curb Wealth Management Schemes

Overnight China's Banking Regulatory Commission drafted new rules curbing the nation’s multi-trillion market for wealth management products, which was not taken well by the local stock market, leading to a plunge in stocks in early Chinese trading, before rebounding at the close of trading. China's ChiNext index of smaller companies sank as much as 5.5%.

Why Oil Prices Might Never Recover

Two years into the global oil-price collapse, it seems unlikely that prices will return to sustained levels above $70 per barrel any time soon or perhaps, ever. That is because the global economy is exhausted. The current oil-price rally is over and prices are heading toward $40 per barrel. Oil has been re-valued to affordable levels based on the real value of money. The market now accepts the erroneous producer claims of profitability below the cost of production and has adjusted expectations accordingly. Be careful of what you ask for.

"Soon" And "Really, Really Crazy": Starting Up The Helicopters

The idea (now being pushed by a surprising number of people who ought to know better) that governments should take advantage of historically low interest rates to “invest” with borrowed money has an obvious fatal flaw. That is, accumulating even more negative or zero-rate debt will make it functionally impossible to raise rates to “normal” levels, which is to say levels where markets can once again function as mechanisms for moving savings into productive investments. It’s not a stretch to call this the end of capitalism and the beginning of a new Dark Age.