There has never been a more destructive central banking policy than the Fed’s current maniacal quest to stimulate more inflation and more debt. That’s what is killing real wages and economic vitality in flyover America - even as it showers prodigious windfalls of unearned wealth on Wall Street and the bicoastal elites who draft on the nation’s vastly inflated finances. Indeed, Fed policy has had a double whammy effect on the flyover zone economy. It drove inflation up when down was needed; and its strip-mined capital from American business when increased capital investment was of the essence.
If the state/central bank attempts to create capital by printing or borrowing money into existence, private capital will flee because the writing is on the wall: the currency and economy are doomed. You can create currency out of thin air, but you can't create sound money out of thin air or real capital out of thin air. If the state/central bank surrenders the money-printing press, and accepts the limitations of a currency it can't print into hyper-inflation, then private capital will enter the economy because it can trust that the currency can't be devalued by politicos or the central bank.
Authored by Steve H. Hanke of the Johns Hopkins University. Follow him on Twitter @Steve_Hanke.
The errors of Keynes have empowered sociopathic political classes all over the world and deprived the world of the economic progress we would otherwise have enjoyed. No amount of stimulus ever seems to be quite enough. And when the stimulus fails, the blinkered Keynesian establishment can only think to double down, never to question the policy itself. The Keynesians are pretending they have everything under control, but we know that’s a fantasy. Simply put, "Keynes must die so the economy may live."
Financial and economic prospects for the Eurozone have many similarities to the 1972-75 period in the UK, which this writer remembers vividly. This time, the prospects facing the Eurozone potentially could be worse. The obvious difference is the far higher levels of debt, which will never allow the ECB to run interest rates up sufficiently to kill price inflation. More likely, positive rates of only one or two per cent would be enough to destabilise the Eurozone’s financial system. Let us hope that these dangers are exaggerated, and the final outcome will not be systemically destabilising, not just for Europe, but globally as well. A wise man, faced with the unknown, believes nothing, expects the worst, and takes precautions.
"...my husband, who I will put in charge of revitalizing the economy ’cause he knows what he’s doing."
Actually, he doesn’t. In truth, it was the doing of Alan Greenspan, and not in a good way.
Since the beginning of the year, the greenback has shown it's not almighty after all; and gold - the barbarous relic as some have called it - may be en vogue again? Where are we going from here and what are the implications for investors?
You have to love it when one of Donald Trump’s wild pitches sends the beltway hypocrites into high dudgeon. But his rumination about negotiating a discount on the Federal debt was priceless. No sooner did the 'unschooled' Trump mention out loud what is already the official policy of the US government than a beltway chorus of fiscal house wreckers commenced screaming like banshees about the sanctity of Uncle Sam’s credit promises.
The difference between Trump and his critics is that he must believe there is a cost in printing too much money. Modern economists do not appear to grasp this basic concept.
There is a growing fear in financial and monetary circles that there is something deeply wrong with the global economy. Publicly, officials and practitioners alike have become confused by policy failures, and privately, occasionally even downright pessimistic, at a loss to see a statist solution. It is hardly exaggerating to say there is a growing feeling of impending doom. In short, growing evidence of price inflation and stagnant production can be expected to materially increase the risk of a global banking and currency meltdown. The best escape-route is ownership of anything other than purely financial assets and fiat currency deposits. No wonder the price of gold, which is the soundest of moneys, appears to have entered a new bull market.
"The classical or orthodox gold standard alone is a truly effective check on the power of the government to inflate the currency. Without such a check all other constitutional safeguards can be rendered vain."
"They’re going to have to stop people from taking out cash... I would argue that it’s not going to be able to be dealt with, and it creates enormous social and political pressures… What we’re going to see is a period of financial repression, which is very, very dangerous... I honestly don’t know how it’s going to end. In the 1920s and 1930 when similar pressures built up, it didn’t actually have a very good ending."
Economic inequality and the absolute destruction of the middle class is something that we've covered for many years (recently here), and being that central bank policies only exacerbate the issue, readers of Zero Hedge are undoubtedly well acquainted with topic. As usual, it took a while, but it does appear as though the mainstream media is finally catching up... While there are some families that have moved into the upper-income bracket, the fact remains that overall, middle-income households are lower in 203 of the 229 U.S. metropolitan areas studied, and there is no bias, the change has affected everyone.
History has shifted, and we're leaving the era of central bank convergence and entering the era of central bank divergence, i.e. open conflict.
Donald Trump’s patented phrase “we aren’t winning anymore” lies beneath the tidal wave of anti-establishment sentiment propelling his campaign and, to some considerable degree, that of Bernie Sanders, too. What’s winning is Washington, Wall Street and the bicoastal elites. But most of America’s vast flyover zone has been left behind. Thus, the bottom 90% of families have no more real net worth today than they had 30 years ago and earn lower real household incomes and wages than they did 25 years ago. Needless to say, the lack of good jobs lies at the bottom of the wealth and income drought on main street, and this week’s April jobs report provided still another reminder.