Jim Grant Presents A Prospectus For The United States, Discusses The Death Penalty For US Coinage Debasers

Jim Grant joins Morgan Stanley (and contrary to Rosenberg's expectations) in anticipating US rates to rise promptly, primarily due to the world's negative "reappraisal of the US Treasury." This is not so much a debate on inflation or deflation, as it is a call on the (un)trustworthiness of the US as a lender. To that end, Grant has put together a Treasury prospectus (which we will post as soon as we procure it) which as Jim puts it "is a compendium of the salient facts about the Treasury as if it were an issuer that did not have a printing press... All you need to know about the credit risk of the US." The first risk factor, via the GAO, "improper payments that should not have been paid by the Treasury totalled $98.7 billion, equivalent to 5% of Treasury outlays." Keep in mind the UST raised $333 billion in net debt in March, as we pointed out yesterday. Grant also discusses the Coinage Act of 1792, whose section 19 stipulates "that the penalty for anyone who would debase the coinage of the US, is death." By that logic, a firing squad may soon need to be sequestered to Washington. Grant's concludes that there is a "great suspension of disbelief in out US monetary system on behalf of the world over. One wonders when people will say no."

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