Yesterday’s leaks confirm the ECB’s plans will effectively give Europe’s consumer lenders access to unlimited zero-cost finance – going far further than the free money showered on them by the multiple previous TLTRO financial packages. Under the proposed scheme, European banks have the option to issue their clients a new branded European Banking Union debit card.
Europe is the birthplace of Western civilization and the source of most of the trends and bodies of knowledge that define modernity. The average European speaks several languages versus sometimes less than one for Americans. They are, in short, a well-schooled people with vast accumulated wisdom. So how do we explain this...
The Swiss, the Finns, and the Ontarians may get their 'Universal Basic Income' but the Japanese are about to turn the Spinal Tap amplifier of extreme monetary experimentation to 11. Sankei reports, with no sourcing, that the Japanese government plans to unleash "vouchers" or "gift certificates" to low-income young people to stimulate the "conspicuous decline" in consumption among young people. The handouts may not be deposited, thus combining helicopter money (inflationary) and fully electronic currency (implicit capital controls and tracking of spending).
Sadly, nations get the leadership they deserve. Turning a blind eye to reality is not a sustainable "solution." Leaders faced with unrest, rising demands and dwindling coffers always debauch their currency as the politically expedient "solution."
It’s actually pretty easy. At an apt moment very soon, Trump should offer Governor Kasich the VP slot and Senator Cruz the vacant Supreme Court seat. Such a grand bargain would not only clear the primary field and quash any backroom hijacking of the nomination by the Washington GOP establishment; it would also permit each man to play his highest and best role at this great inflection point in the nation’s history.
The two concepts - NIRP and deficits - dovetail in a fairly terrifying way: All the new debt we take on to rekindle growth will have to be refinanced in the future. So the more we borrow now the more we’ll have to roll over then — and the bigger the impact on government budgets of an eventual rate normalization. Unless the ultimate plan is to never raise rates to old-school positive levels, in which case the world of the future is so different from that of the past that we may as well toss existing theories of market dynamics and individual freedom out the window.
The country’s social mood is apparently ripe and it finally seems actually possible for a perceived outsider to win by challenging the established order. Our main regret is that it wasn’t yet ripe at the time Ron Paul tried his hand at winning the nomination. Everything Trump is saying and doing should probably be seen in the context of his strategy. It’s quite Machiavellian actually. The alleged lack of discernible policy stances, the occasional contradictions and often hair-raising statements are all in pursuit of the same goal: to win the nomination. Other than that, we mainly enjoy the growing discomfort of assorted cronies and professional politicians.
Could it be that America's ruling classes, its Imperial state and the Federal Reserve, no longer rule their own destiny?Could their smug confidence be their undoing? Only two things could upset the ruling class apple cart: a financial crash that the Fed can't stop, much less reverse, and Donald Trump winning the presidency.
Watching Ms. Yellen answer questions during the “Humphrey-Hawkins” testimony the last two days was painful. It is time to put the central bankers of the world in straight jackets and throw them into the cuckoo’s nest where they belong.
What we see happening today is the last gasps of a broken system ravished by the very much cancer-like progress of debt. Yes, it took longer than it should have, and than we thought. But that’s pretty much irrelevant, unless you were trying to get rich off of the downfall of your own world. Always a noble goal. There’s one reason for the delay only: central bank hubris. And now the entire shebang is falling to bits. That this would proceed in chaotic ways was always a given. People don’t know where to look first or last, neither central bankers nor investors nor anyone else.
Three out of the five major economies are already experiencing stagnant or negative private credit growth. Three down, two to go. Helicopter money--government issued "free money" to households--is no replacement for private credit expansion.
There has been an economic coup d’état in America and most of the world. We are now ruled by about 200 unelected central bankers, monetary apparatchiks and their minions and megaphones on Wall Street and other financial centers. Unlike Senator Joseph McCarthy, we actually do have a list of their names. They need to be exposed, denounced, ridiculed, rebuked and removed.