"The stock market is at record highs and the bond market is acting as if this were the Great Depression... the Fed is virtually a hostage of the financial markets. When they sputter, let alone fall, the Fed frets and steps in... the Fed is justified in that belief because it is responsible to a great degree for the elevation of financial asset values... and to me, gold is a very timely way to invest in monetary disorder."
According to Jeffrey Miller, "all the conditions for a market crash are in place" but when it happens is anyone's guess and ultimately depends on "how dumb things will get before" central banks finally stop.
In the US the year-on-year trend for productivity has turned negative . Most central bankers dismiss this fact as a short-term aberration. But the Japanese economy provides an example of what interest rates at or near zero can do to a large, developed economy. The answer is not much: not much real growth; not much inflation - and, together, not enough nominal GDP growth to repay historic debt should yields on sovereign debt ever return to normal.
Portugal’s doom loop metric has soared over the past two years. Portuguese banks have been gorging on Portuguese sovereign debt, taking it from 7 percent of total assets to 10 percent - the same level as Spain. If they continuing loading up at this pace, they will reach Italian levels by 2018.
The biggest (unspoken of) bubble in the world, just got bubblier. Following the lowest 10Y China government bond auction yield since records began in 2004, a surge of foreign inflows (seeking yield) combined with domestic flight-to-safety from the increasingly default-ridden corporate bond sector has sent China's government bond yields to 2009 lows.
“Radical monetary policy begets more radical policy... It seems to me, at some point, markets or voters will put a stop to this.” If and when that time comes, Grant notes that investors will be looking for physical stores of wealth, explaining "the case for gold is not as a hedge against monetary disorder, because we have monetary disorder, but rather an investment in monetary disorder."
S&P500 index futures were unchanged (up less than 0.1%) following another modest, low-volume levitation in European, Asian shares in a mostly eventless overnight session; oil comes off following gaining overnight with WTI trading just around $43.
"Dishonest money has created a culture of speculation out of ordinary producers and savers. As a result, we confuse financial markets for the source of our wealth." Perhaps at some point our central bankers will come to appreciate that wealth is not created by the printing of money. It is created by honest entrepreneurial endeavour, which is itself jeopardised by constant monetary intervention.