Venezuela’s economy has collapsed. Unfortunately, most people mistakenly believe Venezuela’s policies created a successful economy prior to the collapse in oil prices. The truth is that Venezuela’s socialist policies held back its economy during the oil boom and are the direct cause of its economic collapse today.
Half a world away at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Nobel Laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz made remarks earlier this week that the US should "get rid of currency." Physical cash means there is no one else standing between you and your savings. But Professor Stiglitz and his colleagues don’t want that. They want a massive, centralized bureaucracy to have control over your savings.
The rise of populism isn’t the politics of rejecting experts, it is the rejection of these “experts” – who quite frankly deserve more than voter disdain. Credentials have come to be seen by a very large and growing proportion of the global population to declare incompetence, having nothing at all to do with intellectual capacity apart from objectivity. It isn’t the denial of reasoned argument but rather the logical end of it.
"The economic elite did many things to undermine their credibility while people’s economic fortunes were taking a turn for the worse," said Steven Davis, an economist at the University of Chicago. But a road map for regaining trust is elusive...
Just as was witnessed following “The Great Depression,” the bursting of the next asset bubble will likely once again drive participants away from the market for an entire generation, or longer. The problem for individual investors is the “trap” that is currently being laid between the appearance of strong market dynamics against the backdrop of weak economic and market fundamentals. Ignoring the last two to chase the former has historically not worked out well.
The US government’s debt level has soared to just a hair under $19.7 trillion. To give it some context, that’s up over $170 billion in just eight business days.... the fastest pace in 13 months. It’s almost as if Barack Obama is intentionally and desperately trying to breach the $20 trillion mark before he leaves office in January.
"The time for treating the EUR-peg as a taboo may soon be past us, and an open discussion become the dominant narrative, in pursuit of a long-term durable solution to economic stagnation, in an attempt to save the European Union, so to orderly drive the process as opposed to end up being overwhelmed by the trending course of events."
The problem for individual investors is the “trap” that is currently being laid between the appearance of strong market dynamics against the backdrop of weak economic and market fundamentals. Ignoring the last two to chase the former has historically not worked out well.
"More and more people are aware of what’s going on and that the worst trends of modernity are being extended internationally at a rapid clip... but the internationalists have a solution for that. Give everybody money. Print it and hand it out. That will keep people quiet for as long as necessary."