The Bubble Finance Cycle - What Our Keynesian School Marm Doesn’t Get, Part 1

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by David Stockman via Contra Corner blog,

The world of Bubble Finance economies created by the Fed and other central banks is fundamentally different than that prevailing under the “Lite Touch” monetary policies which preceded the Greenspan era.

Those essentially reactive and minimally invasive central bank intrusions into the money and capital markets prevailed from the time of the Fed’s 1951 liberation from the US Treasury by the great William McChesney Martin through September 1985. That’s when the US Treasury/White House once again seized control of the Fed’s printing presses and ordered Volcker to trash the dollar via the Plaza Accord. In due course, the White House trashed him, too.

The problem today is that the PhDs running the Fed have an economic model which is a relic of the Lite Touch era. It is not only utterly irrelevant in today’s casino driven system, but is actually tantamount to a blindfold. It causes them to look at a dashboard full of lagging indicators like jobs and GDP components, while ignoring the explosive leading indicators starring them in the face on CNBC.

In a word, the rate of stock buybacks and M&A deals is 100X more important than the monthly jobs print, housing starts or retail sales.

The clueless inhabitants of the Eccles Building do not recognize that they have created a world in which Wall Street supersedes main street; and in which the monetary inflation that eventually brings the business cycle to a halt is soaring financial asset prices, not wage rates and new car prices.

During the Light Touch era recessions were triggered by sharp monetary tightening that caused interest rates to surge. This soon garroted business and household borrowing because credit became too expensive. And this interruption in the credit expansion cycle, in turn, caused spending on business fixed assets and household durables to tumble (e.g. auto and appliances), setting in motion a cascade of recessionary adjustments.

But always and everywhere the pre-recession inflection point was marked by a so-called wage and price spiral resulting from an overheated main street economy. Yellen’s Keynesian professors in the 1960s called this “excess demand”, and they should have known.

Professor James Tobin in particular, Yellen’s PhD advisor, had been the architect of a virulent outbreak of this condition during his tenure in the Kennedy-Johnson White House. He had been a pushy advocate of massive fiscal deficits under the guise of full employment accounting, and then had encouraged Johnson to unmercifully browbeat William McChesney Martin until he relented and monetized LBJ’s massive flow of “guns and butter” red ink.

Indeed, according to some historians Tobin and the White House Keynesians worked LBJ into a fiery rage about Martin’s reluctance to run the printing press, and had him summoned to the President’s Texas ranch for the “treatment”. As one journalist described it,

And in 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson, who wanted cheap credit to finance the Vietnam War and his Great Society, summoned Fed chairman William McChesney Martin to his Texas ranch. There, after asking other officials to leave the room, Johnson reportedly shoved Martin against the wall as he demanded that the Fed once again hold down interest rates. Martin caved, the Fed printed money, and inflation kept climbing until the early 1980s.

This is to say, free market economies really don’t “overheat” on their own motion. The old fashioned kind of wage and price spirals happened because even Lite Touch central banks did not allow financial markets to fully and continuously clear.

Instead, they tended to sit on the front end of the yield curve too heavily and for too long. This tendency prevented the market from rationing excess demands for loanable funds through a flexible free market interest rate. A rising price for credit, of course, would curtail borrowing and induce additional savings and less spending, thereby preventing the general economy from getting out of balance.

In the era of Light Touch monetary policy, therefore, the Fed caused every recession, including when it accommodated artificial economic booms generated by war spending during Korea and Vietnam. That’s why it was perennially criticized by sound money advocates for being “behind the curve”.

Nevertheless, in attempting to belatedly catch-up the Fed invariably was forced to throw on the monetary brakes, as is was usually described. In due course, the rise of idle labor and industrial capacity would cause product price inflation to cool and union pressure for excessive wage hikes to abate.

At length, the wage-price spiral would settle back to a point low enough relative to the recent past to satisfy the FOMC that it was safe to supply new reserves to the banking system, and thereby restart the process of credit expansion.

The big difference between the relative success of Lite Touch monetary policy during the Martin era prior to LBJ’s 1965 ukase and the disaster of the 1970s under Arthur Burns and William Miller was a matter of degree.

William McChesney Martin had experienced first hand the Fed induced financial boom of the 1920s and the thundering bust of the Great Depression. He was therefore extremely reticent to use the monetary accelerator during expansions and was quick to tap the brakes after the recovery got started.

He did this within months of the 1958 rebound and famously described his moves to raise interest rates and increase stock market margin loan requirements as “taking away the punch bowl just when the party is getting started.”

By contrast, Arthur Burns was a pipe-smoking economist who had pioneered business cycle studies at Columbia University during the 1930s and 1940s, and as fate had would have it, was also Milton Friedman’s PhD advisor.

Unlike Martin, Burns was an arrogant prig who thought he could read the business cycle tea leaves better than Mr. Market. He was also a coward who craved political power, publicity and praise.

An historical ill-wind was blowing, therefore, the day he hitched his star to the power-mad Richard Nixon in the Eisenhower White House, and then rode to power after the 1968 election. But soon after being appointed Fed Chairman in January 1970, he was hauled into the oval office by Tricky Dick’s praetorian guard and told in no uncertain terms that his sole mission at his new berth in the Eccles Building was to generate a rip-roaring economic boom by the time of the 1972 election.

Burns complied with supine enthusiasm. Soon a virulent domestic wage and price spiral was underway compounded by a global commodities boom, including the then shocking surge of oil prices in late 1973. This was all blamed on nefarious political maneuvering by the Saudis and the newly ascendant OPEC cartel, but it was nothing of the kind.

As I documented in detail in The Great Deformation, the Nixon-Burns monetary explosion caused such a huge surge in US imports that it literally absorbed all available capacity to produce oil, copper, soybeans, iron ore, polyethylene, rubber, industrial tallow etc. and manufactured goods throughout the global economy.

It was a massive worldwide demand shock emanating from the Eccles Building on the Potomac. The historical data clearly show how it was  transmitted through a booming expansion of US bank credit which, in turn, financed massive artificial  demand for capital goods and consumer goods alike.

At length, even the craven Burns had to end the party, throwing on the monetary brakes hard and thereby triggering the deepest recession of the post-war period as of that time. Undoubtedly, his courage quotient had risen sharply after Nixon was Watergated out of office.

Nevertheless, the “stop and go” business cycle pattern of the Lite Touch era of monetary policy was now well established. However, rather than being taken as a warning sign that central bank management of the business cycle was an inherently dubious proposition, the expanding colony of economists on Wall Street and in Washington took the Nixon-Burns disaster as a challenge to do more, not less.

Soon they had equipped themselves with computer based econometric models that aspired to capture and connect all of the moving parts and the entirety of the short-run ebb and flow of the then trillion dollar US economy.  Henceforth, Fed policy would avoid the extremes of Burnsian stop and go by equipping the FOMC to forecast the future direction of the macroeconomy and deftly calibrate its policies accordingly.

This was Lite Touch on a mainframe. It was destined to fail but Milton Friedman and his disciples launched an historic detour that eventually led to the Greenspan/Bernanke/Yellen era of Bubble Finance and the resulting crisis of growth, democracy and capitalism which now weighs heavily upon us.

The Friedmanesque detour, in a word, was the massive, continuous and egregious export of US dollar liabilities to the rest of the world after Nixon closed the gold window at Camp David in August 1971. It was that disastrous act—–advocated and vouchsafed to Nixon by Professor Friedman—–of unshackling the Eccles Building from its need to husband the nation’s gold reserves that had unleashed the Nixon/Burns re-election party in 1972.

Had the US honored its Bretton Woods obligations to redeem for gold the huge overhang of unwanted dollars that had built-up abroad owing to the Keynesian policies of the 1960s, and especially due to the dollar trashing policies of Professor Tobin, there would have been a hair-curling Nixon Recession in 1972, and the world would have been spared his reelection and the monetary mayhem which followed.

Indeed, within a few years even Arthur Burns recognized the immense mistake that had been made a Camp David and advocated a return to some version of a fixed exchange rate and gold convertibility anchor on the FOMC.  But it wasn’t to be.

By then the Nixon-Ford White House was crawling with Professor Friedman’s disciples, most especially an insufferably pedantic professor of labor relations from the Chicago Business School, George Shultz, who shared Friedman’s naïve view that the Fed could be trusted with an unfettered printing press. That is, that an organ of the state should be put in charge of the most important pricing mechanism in all of capitalism——price discovery in the money and capital markets—-in order to foster capitalist prosperity.

What it actually fostered, however, was the greatest binge of monetary profligacy known to history, and there is a simple indicator that measures it precisely. Namely, the gigantic and continuous current account deficits that emerged after the 1970s—–and which have now cumulated to $8 trillion and counting.

In an anchored system of sound money the above graph could have never happened. The outflow of gold or other reserve assets in response to this borrowing hemorrhage would have stopped the money printers at the Fed short decades ago. And Alan Greenspan would have never discovered the figurative printing press in the basement of the Eccles Building at the time of the October 1987 stock market crash because the latter never would have happened under a regime of sound money and an shackled central bank.

Nor is this merely a historical curiosity. The flip side of the massive US current account deficits has been a reciprocal explosion of central bank balance sheets on a worldwide basis. That’s because foreign central banks—especially those of mercantilist oriented Asian state driven economies and the Persian Gulf oil exports—–were under unrelenting pressure to peg their currencies by purchasing excess dollars and expanding their own money supplies.

Not incidentally, that is exactly what Professor Tobin prescribed to the rest of the world during the 1960s. To wit, if you are accumulating too many unwanted dollars there is a simple solution: Man-up and run your own printing press, thereby sequestering unwanted dollar liabilities on your own balance sheet.

That is exactly what has happened since the mid-1990s and is the reason why the James Tobin version of Keynesian bathtub economics has become such a destructive force.

Global Central Bank Balance Sheet Explosion

 

What it did was obliterate the economic borders on which the entire apparatus of central bank demand management policies are based and made irrelevant the dashboard of lagging economic indicators that our Keynesian school marm so blindly tracks.

*  *  *

Next comes Part 2: The Recession Signs In Plain Sight.

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Seasmoke's picture

The fuckers are always behind the curve. Perhaps on purpose. Perhaps not. But either way , we are getting crushed out here by THEIR lies. And it needs to stop NOW !!!!!!

SWRichmond's picture

She does what she's told.  She's a useful idiot.  Nothing more.

mobius8curve's picture

The question becomes who are any of us in light of the Creator?

Please ponder these two passages very very closely:

Romans 9:20-24  Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why didst thou make me thus?  (21)  Or hath not the potter a right over the clay, from the same lump to make one part a vessel unto honor, and another unto dishonor?  (22)  What if God, willing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering vessels of wrath fitted unto destruction:  (23)  and that he might make known the riches of his glory upon vessels of mercy, which he afore prepared unto glory,  (24)  even us, whom he also called, not from the Jews only, but also from the Gentiles?

2 Peter 2:9  the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment unto the day of judgment;

Love in CHRIST! Rob

FringeImaginigs's picture

That's not even funny to use the bible as a textbook of economics.  God forbid.

Likstane's picture

Looks pretty good to me

Gold is money.
Genesis 2:11,12

Gold and silver is money
Genesis 13:2

Schedule of renumeration
Exodus 21,22

Prohibition of usury
Exodus 22:25

What exactly is this "economics" ?

piceridu's picture

I was reading Harry Potter and it said to BTFD!!!

StychoKiller's picture

 

 

[quote] but is actually tantamount to a blindfold. It causes them to look at a dashboard full of lagging indicators like jobs and GDP components, while ignoring the explosive leading indicators starring them in the face on CNBC. [/quote]

"The Purpose of a System is what it does." -- "Have Fun at Work"

doctor10's picture

Janet does nothing more than push or pull the lever as she is told.

 

Most of the world does'nt "get" that

 

www.businessinsider.com/this-chart-shows-the-bilderberg-groups-connectio...

 

Those are the boyz and girlz yanking her chain; they own 50% of the world

SWRichmond's picture

Yup, everything else is theater

Politics, too, is pure theater, the illusion of input.

Crocodile's picture

"The clueless inhabitants of the Eccles Building do not recognize that they have created a world in which Wall Street supersedes main street; and in which the monetary inflation that eventually brings the business cycle to a halt is soaring financial asset prices, not wage rates and new car prices." - Yeah and they know that; it is the plan.

FireBrander's picture

""The clueless inhabitants of the Eccles..."

Bernanke promised 3 things:

1. Reinflate the Stock Market.

2. Reinflate home prices.

3. Recapitalize the banks.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Candidate Obama: "Main Street BEFORE Wall Street"..aka Trickle UP economics.

President Obama: DAY ONE "We must save Wall Street in order to save Main Street"...aks Trickle Down economics.

Fucking asshole.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Prescription Thugs – “The United States of Addiction”

“$422,000 per Congressperson in “Pharma Lobbying”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5sWd00t-6g

 

Banker Buster's picture

Markets down pretty relentlessly over past few days, where are the central banks to talk it up again like they did in October???  Central banks are nothing more than a pump and dump scheme.  I guess their buddies weren't completely out of their positions during the August crash so they had to pump it one last time to let them out.  BOJ, Drashi ECB, Yellen, Riksbank,... worked together in Oct to manipulate the markets for one last pump short squeeze.  

End the fed.

kralizec's picture

I like it when I have a nice bubble in my hands...

Not these kinds of bubbles mind you...

Panic Mode's picture

If I have a degree or PhD in Economics, Sociology, Politics, and many other BS subjects etc, I would be embarrassed to telll people I specialise in these non productive sucky fucky subjects.

SmedleyButlersGhost's picture

Yep - I'm trying to decide between a degree in financial chart drawing or Impressionist Art. They seem pretty much the same. The Wall Street guys pay a ton of money to stare, admire and comment on the charts and paintings, but at the end of the day - no one knows what the fuk they mean.

FringeImaginigs's picture

Ok, so you have to write a thesis, but along the way the late nights drinking beer, BS'ing, playing pool and screwing things does give you a good practical education. But I doubt the Friedman, Yellen types ever looked at it that way.  

buzzsaw99's picture

yellen and her phd ain't in charge of jack shit

hotrod's picture

I am positive there is a cabbage patch doll that looks like that

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

That's one unattractive school marm.  Not too swift either.  But well-connected.

optimator's picture

She sure does get it, managed to get enough to quadruple her net worth since she's been chairman.

Truth Eater's picture

The purpose of the banks is to gain wealth for themselves.  The Federal Reserve- as all other central banks, is purposed to serve the member banks.  To gain wealth, they must sell debt.  They are looking for any way to ensnare more customers in debt. 

 

Since people aren't borrowing, governments are continuing to borrow and encumber nations with national debt.  The only reason they have not stopped is that they need that debt to be entrenched in all areas like pension funds, "entitlements", municipal and state holdings, etc.  This assures them of no default, or that default would be too painful for everyone.

moonmac's picture

When all these Fed Bubbles pop is will make the last bubbles look like soda-pop fizz!

THE DORK OF CORK's picture

Bollox article.

Perhaps the Us is in much the same position that the UK was during the coal strike of 1912 or the Lockout of 1913 ( I.E a capitalist production / consumption Crisis)

If so these guys will just move as they have always done in the past.

Hello Asia fuck you long time goodbye old uncle Sam.

As happened in the UK you will get Navy guys who thought they had it made with the big bank turn commie.

 

venturen's picture

she along with fischer KNOW they are getting lots of money from Wall Street when they step down....THEY ARE GREEDY. They know that the stupid voting public makes NO DIFFERENCE TO THEM. That is why they select crooks from Goldman Sach to sit on the FED. Does anyone think Goldman does one thing to help the average person? ONE TIHNG? Unless a president picks a fair person to run the FED...you need to close it down. The head of a regulator knowing they can PRINT MONEY and GIVE IT TO THE PEOPLE THEY REGULATE and turn a blind eye to enrich the regulatee....and they will be PAID MILLIONS BY THE VERY PEOPLE THEY REGULATE...IS A SYSTEM DOOMED!

venturen's picture

Bernanke, Yellen and Fischer HAVE BEEN BOUGHT...just like Greenspan. They have removed all hoppe of integrity at the FED. With each bubble pop confirming how criminally bought they are....NO ONE CAN BE THAT STUPID OVER AND OVER!

Paulson, Rubin and Geithner as Treasury Sec.....truly show the level of depravity we are at! 

THE DORK OF CORK's picture

 As happened to the UK previously,  Holland and Spain before it. 

Shit happens.

Watch establishment guys who for hundreds of years sucked the big banks tit suddenly realize they are not top Dog.

 

The reaction will be predictable,  first they will go communist and in later years find God.

Watch the Hitchens video - it is the Us of As future.

falak pema's picture

Friedmanite school marm ; Helicopter Money is a term INVENTED by Friedman.

Why blame Keynes's ghost?

That is now turning out to be ghostbuggery of huge proportions here at ZH (The Von Mises curse).

All the while Greenspan's mentor and coach and Ayn Rand's wet dream, changed the course of history with floating rates, derivatives and "our money in hegemony, your problem" mantra!

Sorry to repeat this! But Ghostbuggery of Poor Keynes's frail spirit is like phucking a riddle, wrapped in a mystery; aka phucking thin air!

Be brave and face THE real butt of fiat's obesity.

(I know it'll cure you of all desire to phuck, unless you are brave like Tallulah Bankhead who survived syphilis and sang :" If you think I'll change my ways think again!")

THE DORK OF CORK's picture

Event which marked the end of Rn influence in the Indian and Pacific and handover to the Usn

Coming soon again ?

trippy64's picture

Yet, I see no prescription to fix this.  Nor would I beleive any person that had a perscription.

 

Plan accordingly

polo007's picture

According to Bank of America Merrill Lynch:

https://app.box.com/s/hbi4jvlre5zr4f0oowkijy91p29b26xj

Coming Soon: When Janet Met Mario

Strategically: BofAML base case = “deflationary expansion”; slow, jerky transition to higher growth/higher rates, led by the US, China soft landing; AA = long US dollar, long volatility, long real estate, long stocks/short bonds, UW EM, commodities; higher conviction requires unambiguous Q3 trough in GDP & profits, XLF>$26 & ADXY>110.

Tactically: “sellers into strength” as our trading rules flip from “buy” to “neutral” & Fed hike approaches…December could be the first time since May’94 (a year of bond crashes, defaults & most intriguingly, a weak US$), that investors experience a Fed rate hike & a European rate cut in the same month (see Chart 1).

QE Jenga

The “tail risks” to “deflationary expansion” are high. Like a game of Jenga, a bull market built by central banks can collapse if further BoJ/ECB QE and Fed hikes engender US dollar spikes & US EPS & EM/commodity swoons, FX-wars & volatility rather than a fullblown recovery. Gold & volatility are the natural hedges to the bearish scenario of “Quantitative Failure.”

The Ultimate Inequality

Alternatively, a world dominated by (ineffectual) QE, technological disruption & inequality could cause excess 2016 valuations in “uber growth” (tech, CA real estate, “unicorns”), a rally in “uber value” & a “pop” in “yield” & “shadow banking” as rates belatedly rise to curb Wall Street excesses. As in 1998/99, we think a bold “über-barbell” would outperform in this environment.

...............

Confidence in Quantitative Success for the economy is nonetheless low. Economic growth remains constrained by the deflationary structural factors of Debt, Disruption, Demographics, Regulation, and buffeted by the cyclical event risks of Credit, China, Commodities.

Central banks are easing because global growth is weak. Global profits are down 4% since February. Even the US has struggled: payroll growth has decelerated and the latest US GDP growth rate was a pitiful 1.5% in Q3. And the level of US inventories is unambiguously recessionary (see Chart 3).

What changes this narrative? What signals Q3 was the trough for macro expectations? What causes a market sell-off in bonds in November? Strong October data & market validation of a higher rates/higher growth scenario in coming quarters:

• China PMI>50.5

• US ISM>52

• US payroll>225K

• US banks rally: XLF>$26 would confirm stronger “domestic demand” expectations.

• US dollar stable: if the Fed can hike without boosting dollar this is positive; DXY must not breach 100; a rally in ADXY (Asia FX index) above 110 crucial as this would erase the apocalyptic view of China growth prospects

the grateful unemployed's picture

Sure they put money in at the top, Stockman ought to know it was Reaganomics which first started the phrase "trickledown". i also am at odds with his history of the LBJ administration, seems to me LBJ raised taxes to pay for the Vietnam War, deficit spending in earnest didnt begin until Reagan's term. as for the tenure of this fed chief and that one, it wasn't until Greenspans term that monetary policy became so wonkish. Greenspan served under Nixon, the last president to use blatant PRICE CONTROLS, of course the Fed has used their version to control interest rates, which controls everything. monetary profligacy began during Reagan, and then of course the Presidents Working Group on the Financial Markets in 1987 when they pledged liquidity to the NYSE. and Stockman was there.

the grateful unemployed's picture

lets rewrite history shall we. deficit spending in mass began with the 87 liquification of the stock market rrash, its been off the races since then. has trickledown been removed from the politically incorrect dictionary, i know what do we call it now, QE? stockman served the Reagan admin, whats he doing now, blaming LBJ? sounds about right to me. whores and politicians, if they live long enough they all gain respectability. (Noah Cross in the movie China Town) i frankly get tired of those economists who have found religion (the fault with the others guys policy, only one chart matters the US deficit pre and post 1980, when the Reagan people threw money at the DOD to win the Cold War, hahaha. 

SmittyinLA's picture

"Economic model" lol make their own family rich, that's their economic model.

Forget growth/stability crap, making Jews rich is what the fed does.

Does the policy fit my friends and family's agenda?

That is the only question Yellen asks.

NuYawkFrankie's picture

re  What Our Keynesian School Marm Doesn’t Get

Enuf c*ck -  judging by the looks of her permanently pained & pleading expression.

Booked's picture

George Ackerlof does little to inspire passion, I would think.

Arthur Schopenhauer's picture

To hell with Keynes and hooray for deregulation.

Demdere's picture

As an engineer dealing with control systems, I am at a complete loss of how to deal with this level of incompetence, very common in our institutions even slightly divorced from hard reality.

There are no technologies that allow control of open, evolving, complex systems.  Waving your hands while speaking in politically-persusasive phrases controls people's attitudes for a while, their actions less, and reality indirectly if at all.

This is why centralized institutions are at a disadvantage whenever the periphery can game the system, it is basically an evolutionary arms race :

https://thinkpatriot.wordpress.com/2015/06/27/american-gestapo-agency-he...

This is the kind of thing you can do when you think at a systems level, recognize that the problems are all imposed by accumulated structure and policies :

https://thinkpatriot.wordpress.com/2015/08/10/a-modern-approach-to-secur...

And this is why Yellen and people in the centralized systems with positive feedbacks love them so much :

https://thinkpatriot.wordpress.com/2015/02/26/complex-systems-and-the-hu...

I Write Code's picture

I like your stuff, but I don't think the problem here is the open, dynamic system, so much as a Fed that is trying to control a system by chanting magic words.  They are not even engaging the system at all, and then they are ignoring the evidence of their failures.  "Just one more tweak of the model!" they cry.  Then more magic words.  And then more no effects.

Amy G. Dala's picture

One up for the Lebowski links.

bulldung's picture

Keynesians print when faced with deflation. Robbing the working class insidiously and starving the poor with inflation is the M.O. Only people who can afford assets that rise with inflation prosper reaping wealth disparity. These are the apparent intended consequences. What are the unintended consequences of implementing Keynesian Theory? Anarchy followed by totalitarianism?

Hubbs's picture

 

 I was going to summarize in the version I tell my 11 year old daughter but I said enough preaching to the choir.

 

Stockman is right, but too wordy and obtuse.

Booked's picture

Stockman hits the nail far more squarely than Gilder!!

I Write Code's picture

David m'man, what *are* you babbling about?  OMG, you wrote a whole book about this?  Well, lose the book.  It's different now.  That's the major gripe about your various rantings.

We *could* try to live in a gold-based, old-school economy, but we're not, so get over it.  The question is then, how does this fiat system work?  Don't just keep telling us it's going to fall into a golden hole, because that just doesn't seem imminent.  Maybe the whole universe is an in-falling black hole, but we still get up in the morning and keep on chugging, right?

>The problem today is that the PhDs running the Fed have an economic model
>which is a relic of the Lite Touch era.

This is the question.  They have an integrated "model" which pretends that they can control the weather by printing more or less money.  Doh!  The model is absurd.  There are no facts to back it up.  It is a political pretension.  Yet they are letting the model guide them.  Maybe.

It's the inappropriate model which seems the problem.  The REAL economic problems are globalization, that responds extremely poorly and extremely slowly, if at all, to monetary jiggering.  The Fed has no handle on this and they should STOP PRETENDING.

StychoKiller's picture

Hmm, without "confidence" in the Fed, "confidence" in the FRN would dissipate, leading to HyperInflation...

lasvegaspersona's picture

For every point the dollar index rises and every dollar oil drops there is a child in Nigeria who cries that her father will not be able to send her to Harvard. There is also a derivative seller at Morgan Stanley who has to be talked in off the window ledge....and a pension plan manager in Duesseldorf who worries about the guy at Morgan Stanley. We are all tied together by this dollar system....too bad it ain't going to make it.

We will come out on the other side and probably then we will be able to see that we all went mad in a herd. Bretton Wood 1944. Nixon 1971. It is just amazing that all this has held up as long as it has.

Enjoy the weekend but fill your gas tank and pantry. You do not want to be in that line when the big day comes.