Tax Revenue

You Know Negative Interest Rates Are Bad When...

...the Swiss canton of Zug is asking its citizens to delay paying their taxes for as long as possible, because the cantonal government doesn’t want to take in a pile of cash, only to end up paying the bank interest on all the tax revenue.

2016: Oil Limits & The End Of The Debt Supercycle

The problem of reaching limits in a finite world manifests itself in an unexpected way: slowing wage growth for non-elite workers. Lower wages mean that these workers become less able to afford the output of the system. These problems first lead to commodity oversupply and very low commodity prices. Eventually these problems lead to falling asset prices and widespread debt defaults. These problems are the opposite of what many expect, namely oil shortages and high prices. This strange situation exists because the economy is a networked system. Feedback loops in a networked system don’t necessarily work in the way people expect.

Congress's $1.15 Trillion Spending Bill: Heads They Win, Tails You Lose

Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s seminal masterpiece Crime and Punishment is often thought of as one of the longest classics at more than 200,000 words. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2016, which was signed into law on Friday, is nearly twice as long. At 887 pages, the bill allocates $1.15 trillion in war and discretionary spending for fiscal year 2016 which began almost three months ago. (That’s an average of $1.3 billion in spending PER PAGE of the bill.) In making it public law, President Obama has effectively signed the death warrant of the US government’s finances.

$20,000 Gold And The End Of "Pollyanna-ish Do-Goodery"

"They just won't let the scales balance... it is a rampant narcissistic megalomania that somehow some guy in a air-conditioned office can best repliacte the free market and centrally plan our affairs... Their starry-eyed pollyanna-ish do-goodery never seems to pan out."

There's No Upside Left

The upside is ephemeral, illusory or wishful thinking; the downside is real and lasting.

Denmark To Confiscate Gold, Jewelry, & Valuables From Refugees

Danish border guards may confiscate gold, jewelry, diamonds, and other valuables from refugees as they enter the country (though wedding rings are now off limits). The Danish government’s excuse is that they need to confiscate assets from refugees in order to pay for the services they’re providing to those same refugees. Having armed men indiscriminately seize refugees’ personal belongings doesn’t strike me as the best representation of a free society. Not that this matters anymore.

10 Investor Warning Signs For 2016

Wall Street’s proclivity to create serial equity bubbles off the back of cheap credit has once again set up the middle class for disaster. The warning signs of this next correction have now clearly manifested, but are being skillfully obfuscated and trivialized by financial institutions. Nevertheless, here are ten salient warning signs that astute investors should heed as we roll into 2016.

Economic Growth: How It Works, How It Fails, & Why Wealth Disparity Occurs

Economists have put together models of how an economy works, but these models were developed years ago, when the world economy was far from limits. These models may have been reasonably adequate when they were developed, but there is increasing evidence that they don’t work in an economy that is reaching limits.

Unintended Consequences

Actions – including the state’s best-intentioned ones (giving them the benefit of the doubt) - have consequences, not all of them foreseen and some of them contrary to what was (we assume) intended.

The Future Of Cannabis

The landscape of the cannabis industry is quickly changing. More jurisdictions are turning to legalization of medical and recreational cannabis, and the growth story behind the industry is just beginning for investors.

The Good Ol' Days: When Tax Rates Were 90 Percent

It’s quite interesting indeed when both progressives and conservatives seem to be nostalgic for those good ol’ days in the 1950s, for different reasons, of course. Conservatives want to go back to the nuclear Leave It to Beaver family and what not while liberals like to talk about those 90-percent tax rates that we owe our prosperity to. Or something like that. However, what a tax rate is and what is actually paid are two very different things.

Why "Supply & Demand" Doesn't Work For Oil

The traditional view of the impact of low oil prices seems to be, "It is just another cycle." Or, "The cure for low prices is low prices." We are doubtful that either of these views is right.

Why It Absolutely, Positively Does Not Matter

Watching Hilary Clinton debate Bernie Sanders- or like lastnight, Jeb Bush against Donald Trump - doesn’t strike us as too different from when Hulk Hogan faced off against Andre the Giant in Wrestlemania. In fact, it’s essentially the same with elections today, it's "political entertainment." It’s all fake. It’s sound bites, jabs and jibes, and pointless banter completely devoid of any real substance. But the truth is, none of it really matters, the United States objectively speaking is far past the point of no return.