But not how you think.
Seven years after the start of the financial crisis, economic and financial conditions remain far from normal. In the ‘Wonderland’ of near-zero interest rates, many of the traditional relationships that have governed the way in which markets and cycles evolve have broken; the value of historical analysis has weakened. In Goldman's view, there are three very different near-term paths that economies and markets can now follow, and that imply very different outcomes for financial markets... (What GS realizes, in short, is The Fed is entirely boxed-in)
Most of us have heard of the seven stages of grief. Shock, Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Guilt, Depression, Acceptance. Where are we in our journey through these stages when it come to the financial crisis, and to growth? There’s only one stage that even remotely sounds right: Denial. We’re not even close to Anger yet, not when it comes to the larger population. We simply deny that something has really changed. And even if you wish to claim that it hasn’t, no-one can deny the possibility that it has. Still, that is exactly what happens. Denial, everywhere you look. Freud’s ideas are (ab)used to hide reality from us (to ‘sell’ the message), while Keynes’ ideas are abused to hide the reality that you can’t buy growth with debt your children will have to pay back. Pretty simple, when you think about it.
There was a time when one couldn't get Bernanke to shut up: whether it was swearing to Congress how the Fed is not monetizing debt, explaining to Ron Paul that gold is nothing but "tradition", or otherwise issuing one after another after another debt monetizing quantitative easing program in hopes that "this time" the trickle down from the record high stock market would finally unleash central-planning utopia, Bernanke's verbal insight was in a state of constant deflation. However, ever since his departure from the marble halls of the Marriner Eccles building, suddenly Bernanke's insight has hyperinflated to the tune of some $250,000 per hour of Bernanke's time (time during which he says such profound insights as "No Rate Normalization During My Lifetime"). So without further ado, and without having to fork over a ridiculous quarter of a million dollars, here is what the Chairsatan really said...
Congress gave the Fed a mandate to “promote maximum employment, production, and price stability”; it never explicitly authorized propping up stocks. Yet through a remarkable theoretical stretch called the “wealth effect,” that’s exactly what the Fed is doing.
Last Wednesday the markets plunged on a vague recognition that the central bank promoted recovery story might not be on the level. But that tremor didn’t last long. Right on cue the next day, one of the very dimmest Fed heads - James Dullard of St Louis - mumbled incoherently about a possible QE extension, causing the robo-traders to erupt with buy orders. And its no different anywhere else in the central bank besotted financial markets around the world. Everywhere state action, not business enterprise, is believed to be the source of wealth creation - at least the stock market’s paper wealth version and even if for just a few more hours or days. The job of the monetary politburo is apparently to sift noise out of the in-coming data noise - even when it is a feedback loop from the Fed’s own manipulation and interventions.
Alongside the CPI data released earlier which showed the smallest possible broad price increase, when considering that previously the BLS reported flat nominal hourly wages in September, it implied that real wages declined once again. Sure enough, in a separate report today, the BLS announced that real average hourly earnings (in constant 1982-1984 dollars) declined once again, this time from $10.34 to $10.32, a -0.2% drop from past month. This also means that since March, there has been just one month in which real hourly wages have increased, and that was mostly due to the outright deflationary print the BLS reported last month.
It will be the plotline of scary stories parents tell their children for decades to come: in Q1 2014, the US economy was supposed to grow 3%... and then it snowed. This led to a -2% collapse in the world's largest economy. Yes, inconceivably heavy snowfall (in the winter), and frigid temperatures (in the winter), were the reason for a $100+ billion swing in US GDP. Well, as the following chart from DB's Torsten Slok shows, of the roughly $2 trillion in GDP the global economy is expected to grow in 2015, about 90% of that is expected to come from China and the US!
- Russia Loses Oil Ally in De Margerie After Moscow Crash (BBG)
- Austria's Erste denies report it has failed stress tests (Reuters)
- Sweden gets two new sightings, as hunt for undersea intruder goes on (Reuters)
- Companies Try to Escape Health Law’s Penalties (WSJ)
- Mud and Loathing on Russia-Ukraine Border (BBG)
- NOAA employee charged with stealing U.S. dam information (Reuters)
- Lower Oil Prices Seen Easing Japan’s Trade Pain (WSJ)
- Michigan becomes 5th U.S. state to thwart direct Tesla car sales (Reuters)
- Maglev Train Seen Making Washington-to-Baltimore Trip at 311 MPH (BBG)
67 econonomists polled by Bloomberg predicted rising rates. Rates fell. Many predict rising rates now. Let's look into the wrong assumptions that lead to this prediction.
Barack Obama and the Federal Reserve are lying to you. The "economic recovery" that we all keep hearing about is mostly just a mirage... For those out there that still believe that we are doing "just fine", here are 19 more facts about the messed up state of the U.S. economy.
All the talk of “helping small business” and “creating jobs” is just that: talk. Those who actually show initiative to create business shouldn’t be overburdened with tax loads and bureaucratic red tap.
The Magic Number Is Revealed: It Costs Central Banks $200 Billion Per Quarter To Avoid A Market CrashSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 10/21/2014 12:58 -0400
"For over a year now, central banks have quietly being reducing their support. As Figure 7 shows, much of this is down to the Fed, but the contraction in the ECB’s balance sheet has also been significant. Seen from this perspective, a negative reaction in markets was long overdue: very roughly, the charts suggest that zero stimulus would be consistent with 50bp widening in investment grade, or a little over a ten percent quarterly drop in equities. Put differently, it takes around $200bn per quarter just to keep markets from selling off."
Fast forward to last night, when instead of the much hoped for Chinese GDP drop - because it would certainly unleash the greatly delayed Chinese liquidity firehose so hoped for by all the BTFDers who need at least once central bailout per day to keep up the charade - China reported GDP which beat expectations, leading to many sad faces on Wall Street, and forcing Reuters to leak the infamous ECB buying corporate bonds article, since refuted, which served as the overnight ramping catalyst. So what is the "explanation" for this unpleasant, for once, economic beat? Why, the weather of course!
Coke Blows Up Guidance, Is Latest Consumer Bellwether And Buffett Favorite To Disappoint, Stock StumblesSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 10/21/2014 08:02 -0400
Yesterday it was IBM, today it is the turn of that other Buffett favorite and consumer-spending bellwether, Coke, to disappoint and push the stock lower, when not only did KO miss on the top line, reporting $11.98 billion in sales, below the Estimate $12.12 billion, but utter some unpleasant words about the future, guiding "below its long-term EPS growth target for 2014." And because nothing says strong consumer like one of the biggest consumer staples blowing, we will merely wait for MCDs to come out next and complete the "recovery" picture.