Janet Yellen is very alarmed that some members of Congress want to conduct a comprehensive audit of the Federal Reserve for the first time since it was created. During testimony this week, she made “central bank independence” sound like it was the holy grail. Even though every other government function is debated politically in this country, Janet Yellen insists that what the Federal Reserve does is “too important” to be influenced by the American people. Does any other government agency ever dare to make that claim? If the Fed is doing everything correctly, why should Yellen be alarmed? What does she have to hide?
It’s the start of a new year. The question is whither the prices of gold and silver? This Brief presents our answer.
Say you are a socialist, and you have intervened heavily in the economy. Suddenly, things don’t work as you thought they would. Somehow, economic laws seem to refuse to bend to your will. However, you cannot really believe that since according to your convictions, wealth is a byproduct of government plans and decrees. So the solution to the unintended consequences of the initial intervention is to intervene further, in an attempt to refine the plan, so to speak. So you try again. And again. And again. Chances are, your name is Nicolas Maduro. In summary, the thread by which Venezuelan socialism hangs may soon snap.
Mario Draghi Unveils €60 Billion Per Month QE Through September 2016 With Partial Risk-Sharing: Live Conference WebcastSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 01/22/2015 08:30 -0500
From "whatever it takes" to OMT to "discussing" bond purchases, with European interest rates at record (incomprehensible) lows (apart from Greece) and EURUSD at 11-year lows (down 25 handles in the last 8 months), Mario Draghi looks set to unleash interventionist 'hell' on the investing public in Europe with EUR50 billion (plus plus) of ECB QE per month for as long as it takes...
It will be even more disruptive if some among them decide that the only reason for the failure of their collective delusion of grandeur is that they have not been deluded enough and that even more wild-eyed palliatives are therefore needed. Disruption on such a scale is not what the budding entrepreneur wants to contend with as he contemplates whether to risk both his capital and his reputation in launching or expanding a business, in ordering new equipment, or hiring new staff and so fostering a meaningful recovery. Disruption on such a scale is not something we should wish to inflict upon a system we have been both unable and unwilling to fully repair. Either way – damned if they do, damned if they don’t – disruption seems to be what we will get in the months ahead.
Remember when shortly after ISIS' stunning and rapid ascent to power it was revealed that a key reason for the terrorist organization's blistering success were the M-1 Abrams tanks, armored transport trucks, Howitzers and countless Humvees made in the US, sold to Iraq and subsequently captured by ISIS? It appears that the US has decided to restock ISIS, if only indirectly. As Matthew Aid's Strategypage.com discloses, the US is now selling a whopping 170 M-1 tanks to Iraq in order to restock the 40 lost to ISIS last summer, and then some. And since ISIS will promptly recapture a substantial portion of this latest batch, the US now appears to have found a fully covert, backdoor ISIS-restocking supply channel: one where Iraq pays to US military contrators (using US taxpayer aid money) such as General Dynamics, and subsequently the inventory mysteriosuly finds its way to barbaian, headcutting terrorists.
Having served up a large bowl of nothing with the official statement, the job of jawboning 'hope' for future monetary policy idiocy falls once again on Mario Draghi's shoulders as he takes the stage in what may well be a highly contentious press conference. Will he admit the mutiny? Will he 'fess up that OMT is a mirage? Will he admit to being a secretive dictator? Will he remove his spectacles and angrily point at a reporter?
Economic data from China have generally been on the weak side of late, but not catastrophically so. And yet, apart from growing weakness in aggregated data, we also see more and more anecdotal evidence that the economy is deteriorating.
Japan’s aging population needs rising prices like a hole in the head. The more “successful” Mr. Kuroda becomes in forcing prices up, the less money people will have to spend and invest. The economy will weaken, not strengthen, as a result. The advantages the export sector currently enjoys are paid for by the entire rest of the economy. moreover, even this advantage is fleeting. It only exists as long as domestic prices have not yet fully adjusted to the fall in the currency’s value. If one could indeed debase oneself to prosperity, it would long ago have been demonstrated by someone. While money supply growth in Japan has remained tame so far, the “something for nothing” trick implied by the BoJ’s massive debt monetization scheme is destined to end in a catastrophe unless it is stopped in time. Once confidence actually falters, it will be too late.
"Remember, the Fed has injected into the market nearly 4 Trillion dollars. That’s $4,000,000,000,000.00. To put this into perspective... the equivalent in dollar amounts to have purchased 510 B-2 Stealth Bombers, 72 Nimitz Class Air Craft Carriers, 120 Ohio Class Submarines. and still have Two TRILLION or so left in my pocket left to spend." As far as what we have to show for all this spending at the end of QE this month? Who knows, but I do know – we didn’t even get a lousy T-shirt.
What’s the true risk for the global economy? Its pronounced: /d??fl?SH(?)n/
"Cavalry Won't Be Coming From The East" - China New Loans Jump But Not Nearly Enough, FX Reserves Drop Most On RecordSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 10/16/2014 09:50 -0500
"Higher credit aggregates can temporarily plug the monetary gaps, but ultimately this can only mean slower growth, less rapid price rises, ever more illiquid balance sheets (more 'revenues' tied up in receivables and a bigger gap between 'profits' and actual cash), and more recourse to financial trickery to stay afloat. Looks like lots more 'gold' exports to HK will be needed unless today's announcement that SAFE is to conduct an audit of 'trade finance' in Shenzhen manages to bung up that particular loophole! One other salient feature to note in China: QIII-14 non-household power consumption was only 2.5% ahead of QIII-13, just more than half of QII's relatively tardy 4.9% YOY rate. Just like the money numbers, not exactly consistent with 7.x% GDP and 8.x% IP Growth, one might think. If markets are awaiting the Cavalry, they won't be coming from the east - whatever the official data release tries to pretend."
Moments ago, the Goldmanite in charge of the European Central Bank delivered yet another speech, this time seeking to offset some of the hawkish comments over the weekend from his comrades, all of which suggested that no more easing, or public QE, was coming any time soon. It was, as usual, full of the same lies that have pushed European stocks to highs not seen since Lehman even as Europe's economy is now slumping into a triple-dip recession. Here is a choice selection of his comments, properly annotated.
Why The Collapse Of Abenomics Is Important: It's A Large-Scale Failure Of Keynesian Stimulus In Real TimeSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/14/2014 20:07 -0500
We have frequently discussed the nonsensical attempt by Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe and BoJ governor Haruhiko Kuroda to print and spend Japan back to prosperity. By now it is well known that devaluing the yen has not achieved the desired effect, but rather the opposite. Not only have exports not really received the expected boost, but Japan’s trade and current account surplus have decreased markedly, even posting negative numbers for the first time in decades. Of course, currency debasement never works: it cannot work. This is Keynesian logic and brilliance in all it splendor.