– Boston Fed Admits There Is No Exit, Suggests QE Become “Normal Monetary Policy” (ZeroHedge, April 26, 2015):
Perhaps it was inevitable. After all, the term “QEfinity” entered the financial lexicon long ago and there were already quite a few commentators out there suggesting that it may now be too late to remove the punchbowl, meaning an “exit” will not only prove difficult, but may well be impossible.
Take Makoto Utsumi, who oversaw foreign-exchange policy at the Japanese Ministry of Finance from 1989-1991, for example. Utsumi recently said a BoJ QE exit was out of the question “for the foreseeable future” and went on to note that “even the thought of an exit is a nightmare.” Meanwhile, it’s virtually impossible to say what effect Fed tightening will have in both the Treasury and corporate bond markets given the lack of liquidity in both and then there’s EM where carnage unfolded in 2013 after a certain bearded bureaucrat said the wrong thing about the direction of Fed policy.
Given all of this, we’re not surprised to learn that in a new paper entitled “Let’s Talk About It: What Policy Tools Should The Fed ‘Normally’ Use?”, the Boston Fed is now suggesting that QE become a permanent tool at the disposal of the Fed. After all, “financial stability” depends on it… Continue reading »
– “I’m Not Crazy, I’m Scared” – Why For One Trader, This Time It Is Different (ZeroHedge, April 24, 2015):
Bloomberg’s Richard Breslow, author of “Trader’s Notes” is painfully accurate with his latest take on the “markets.”
I’m Not Crazy, I’m Scared Continue reading »
“Fed has created abnormal market conditions by printing money and keeping interest rates low. Investors are looking for growth anywhere they can find it and tech companies are good targets – at these values, however, all tech stocks are expensive – even looking at 5+ years of revenue growth down the road. This means that most value-driven investors have left the market and the remaining 5-10%+ increase in market value will be driven by momentum investors. At some point there won’t be any momentum investors left buying at higher prices, and the market begins to tumble. May be 10-20% correction or something more significant, especially in tech stocks.”
– How The Second Tech Bubble Will Burst, In The Words Of Silicon Valley’s “Poster Child” And World’s Youngest Billionaire (ZeroHedge, April 23, 2015):
Back in December, following the Sony email leak, the world was granted a second (again uninvited) glimpse into the private life and thoughts of the person who had previously suffered another email leak, this time exposing his fraternity days explots: Snapchat founder and CEO Evan Spiegel.
And while many have been quick to mock Spiegel for some of his boyish ways, the reality is that the not only is the 24-year-old the world’s youngest billionaire, but he has quickly won the admiration of Silicon Valley’s brand names like Twitter CEO Dick Costolo who has said “I really think he is one of the best product thinkers out there right now.” Continue reading »
– Ten Wonderful Things I’m Grateful For (Irony Alert) (Of Two Minds, April 20, 2015):
Being grateful boosts your happiness. Ten wonderful things I’m grateful for.
Since every volume on the nearly endless shelf of pop psychology self-help books recommends working up some gratitude as the key to happiness, I’ve conjured up a list of what I’m grateful for. (Please turn your irony setting on.) Continue reading »
– Multibillion Hedge Fund Manager: “Ultimately QE Will Fail; US And China Might Enter Recession At The Same Time” (ZeroHedge, April 20, 2015):
“Ultimately, the current QE programs will fail. I think most likely through a large devaluation in the emerging market currencies. Having dodged and parried so many blows from Central Bank QE programs, the market is seemingly failing to break higher. Breadth is narrowing in the US stock market, and credit spreads widening. Economic data, with the exception of jobs, which is a lagging indicator, indicate the US economy is peaking. To me it looks like the US and China might go into recession at the same time.”
– Signs That The Elite Are Feverishly Preparing For Something BIG (End of the American Dream, April 15, 2015):
What in the world are the elite up to? In recent days, we have learned that the New York Fed is moving a lot of operations to Chicago because of concerns about what a “natural disaster” could do, the federal government is buying 62 million rounds of ammunition commonly used in AR-15 semi-automatic rifles for “training” purposes, and NORAD is moving back into Cheyenne Mountain because it is “EMP-hardened”. In addition, government authorities have scheduled a whole host of unusual “training exercises” all over the nation. So are the elite doing all of this in order to prepare for something really BIG, or should we just chalk up all of this strange activity to rampant government paranoia?
First, let’s talk about what the New York Fed has been doing. What kind of natural disaster would be bad enough to completely shut down the operations of the New York Federal Reserve Bank? It would have to be something very unusual, and apparently the New York Fed is very concerned that such an event could happen. According to Reuters, the New York Fed has been transferring personnel to Chicago and building up its satellite office there just in case a “natural disaster” makes it impossible for normal operations to continue in New York… Continue reading »
– NY Fed’s “Plunge Protection Team” Starts Chicago Trading Floor “In Case Of Disaster Or Other Eventuality” (ZeroHedge, April 15, 2015):
We have known for quite some time now that the NY Fed’s market group, aka the Plunge Protection Team, is opening a second office in HFT-capital Chicago. What was not known is what is the official reasoning behind the Fed’s move to be even closer to its Citadel executions arm. Overnight, courtesy of Reuters we found that the “The New York branch of the U.S. Federal Reserve, wary that a natural disaster or other eventuality could shut down its market operations as it approaches an interest rate hike, has added staff and bulked up its satellite office in Chicago.”
– Meet The Secretive Group That Runs The World (ZeroHedge, April 11, 2015):
Over the centuries there have been many stories, some based on loose facts, others based on hearsay, conjecture, speculation and outright lies, about groups of people who “control the world.” Some of these are partially accurate, others are wildly hyperbolic, but when it comes to the historic record, nothing comes closer to the stereotypical, secretive group determining the fate of over 7 billion people, than the Bank of International Settlements, which hides in such plain sight, that few have ever paid much attention.
This is their story.
First unofficial meeting of the BIS Board of Directors in Basel, April 1930
* * *
The following is an excerpt from TOWER OF BASEL: The Shadowy History of the Secret Bank that Runs the World by Adam LeBor. Reprinted with permission from PublicAffairs.
The world’s most exclusive club has eighteen members. They gather every other month on a Sunday evening at 7 p.m. in conference room E in a circular tower block whose tinted windows overlook the central Basel railway station. Their discussion lasts for one hour, perhaps an hour and a half. Some of those present bring a colleague with them, but the aides rarely speak during this most confidential of conclaves. The meeting closes, the aides leave, and those remaining retire for dinner in the dining room on the eighteenth floor, rightly confident that the food and the wine will be superb. The meal, which continues until 11 p.m. or midnight, is where the real work is done. The protocol and hospitality, honed for more than eight decades, are faultless. Anything said at the dining table, it is understood, is not to be repeated elsewhere. Continue reading »
– Russia’s Central Bank Governor Is Way Smarter Than Ours (The Automatic Earth, April 8, 2015):
It wouldn’t be a first, but it would certainly be a – bigger – shock. That is to say, the Bank of England hijacked the head of Canada’s central bank some time ago, but, while unexpected enough, that would pale in comparison to the US hiring the present Governor of the Russian central bank, Elvira Sakhipzadovna Nabiullina. It would still seem to be a mighty fine idea, though.
Not that I think it will happen, not to worry if you think Yellen is just what it takes at the Fed. But Nabiullina is both razor sharp and fiercely independent. Yellen is obviously neither; she’s a cog in a machine that huffs and puffs and pumps and dumps to make sure her overlords in the blissful world of US finance make ever more profit no matter how bad things get in American society. Continue reading »
– A Global Financial Reset Is Coming: ‘A Deal Is Being Made Between All The Central Banks’ (SHFTplan, April 5, 2015):
There is an unprecedented reset coming to world financial markets and if you’ve been paying attention it’s impossible to ignore the signs. In fact mega-investment funds, governments and central banks have been secretly buying up and storing physical gold in anticipation of an event that will leave the U.S. dollar effectively worthless and governments around the world angling for a new global currency mechanism, according to mining executive Keith Neumeyer.
But before the reset can happen Neumeyer, who recently founded First Mining Finance and has partnered with billionaire alternative asset investors like Eric Sprott and Rick Rule, says that foreign creditors must first deleverage their U.S. dollar debt, a move that is happening right now and is evidenced by the recent strength of the U.S. dollar. Continue reading »
Now that sums up the current situation nicely.
From the article:
“This is not going to be a 1921-style two-year recession that we bounce back from after a little bit of pain and unpleasantness. After a 50-year global economic boon involving what is now a $59 trillion expansion of credit in 50 years, this isn’t going to be a one or two-year hard recession. This is going to be a multi-decade global depression and I’m not sure that anyone alive today would live long enough to see the recovery. I mean, it’s like Rome: when Rome fell, there was a recovery, but it was 1,000 years later. This is the kind of depression we’re looking at if we allow this $59 trillion credit bubble of ours to implode.”
– Richard Duncan: The Real Risk Of A Coming Multi-Decade Global Depression (Peak Prosperity, April 5, 2015):
Richard Duncan, author of The Dollar Crisis and The New Depression: The Breakdown Of The Paper Money Economy, isn’t mincing words about the risks he sees ahead for the world economy.
Essentially, he sees the past 50 years of economic prosperity fueled by globalization and easy credit in serious danger of being unwound, as the doomed monetary policies currently being pursued by the word’s central banks result in a massive multi-decade depression that spans the globe.
The first version of The Dollar Crisis, the hardback, came out in 2003, so I wrote it in 2002. And at that time, the dollar against gold was $300. So the dollar has lost more than 75% of its value since The Dollar Crisis was written, and I don’t think it’s going to stop here. I expect it to continue to lose value over the years and decades ahead.
But what we’re seeing is that the real theme of The Dollar Crisis was that the post-Bretton Woods international monetary system was fundamentally flawed because it couldn’t prevent trade imbalances between countries. And the US had developed an enormous trade deficit with the rest of the world and this blew the trade surplus countries like Japan and China into bubbles. And then, the dollars boomeranged back into the United States and blew it into a bubble, as well. I didn’t know when the housing bubble was going to pop in the US but I knew it would. And I wrote in The Dollar Crisis that when it did, we would have a severe global economic recession/depression that would involve a systemic banking sector crisis in the United States and necessitate trillion-dollar budget deficits and unorthodox monetary policy to prevent a Great Depression from occurring. Continue reading »
– It’s Official: Fed Sees 0.0% GDP Growth In The First Quarter (ZeroHedge, April 1, 2015):
The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow model forecast for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the first quarter of 2015 has been downgraded once again… to 0.0 percent on April 1, down from 2.3 percent on Feb 13th.
Following this morning’s construction spending release from the U.S. Census Bureau, the nowcast for real residential investment growth increased from -1.1 percent to 1.8 percent. This was more than offset by declines in the nowcasts for real nonresidential structures investment growth (-19.3 percent to -22.5 percent) and real state and local government spending growth (0.3 percent to -0.8 percent).
– Gold In Fed Vault Drops Under 6,000 Tons For The First Time, After 10th Consecutive Month Of Redemptions (ZeroHedge, March 31, 2015):
Two months ago, when looking at the most recent physical gold withdrawal numbers reported by the Fed, we observed something peculiar: between the publicly reported surprise redemption by the Netherlands (122 tons) and the just as surprise redemption by the Bundesbank (85 tons), at least 207 tons of gold should have vacated the NY Fed’s gold vault. Instead, the Fed reported that in all of 2014 “only” 177 tons of gold were shipped out of the massive gold vault located 90 feet below 33 Liberty Street. Somehow the delta between what we “shipped” and what was “received” in the past year was a whopping 30 tons, or about 15% of the total – a gap that is big enough to make even China’s outright fraudulent trade numbers seems sterling by comparison.
This prompted us to ask: Continue reading »
– Every young person should see the Fed’s startling numbers on student debt (Sovereign Man, March 30, 2015):
What I’m about to tell you is not my own opinion or even analysis. It’s original data that comes from the United States Federal Reserve and national credit bureaus.
- 40 million Americans are now in debt because of their university education, and on average borrowers have four loans with a total balance of $29,000.
- According to the Fed, “Student loans have the highest delinquency rate of any form of household credit, having surpassed credit cards in 2012.”
- Since 2010, student debt has been the second largest category of personal debt, just after a home mortgage.
- The delinquency rate for student loans is now hovering near an all-time high since they started collecting data 12 years ago.
- Only 37% of total students loan balances are currently in repayment and not delinquent.
The rest—nearly 2 out of 3—are either behind on payments, in all-out default, or have entered some sort of deferral program to delay making payments, with a small percentage still in school.
It’s pretty obvious that this is a giant, unsustainable bubble (more on this below). But even more important are the personal implications. Continue reading »
From the article:
“When I was chairman, more than one legislator accused me and my colleagues on the Fed’s policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee of “throwing seniors under the bus” (to use the words of one senator) by keeping interest rates low. The legislators were concerned about retirees living off their savings and able to obtain only very low rates of return on those savings.”
And the punchline:
“I was concerned about those seniors as well.”
Yes, deeply concerned on how to wipe them (the middle class and the poor) out best.
– Ben Bernanke Pens First Blog Post, Defends Fed, Says He “Was Concerned About Seniors” (ZeroHedge, March 30, 2015):
It would appear the $250,000/hour speaking opportunities for Ben Bernanke have ground to a halt, and as such, the former Chairsatan has decided to dispense his wisdom for free to anyone who cares, by becoming a blogger at Brookings. And, not surprisingly, in his first post, the person who less than a decade ago said the following, in exactly those words…
Well, I guess I don’t buy your premise. It’s a pretty unlikely possibility. We’ve never had a decline in house prices on a nationwide basis. So, what I think what is more likely is that house prices will slow, maybe stabilize, might slow consumption spending a bit. I don’t think it’s gonna drive the economy too far from its full employment path, though. Continue reading »
– An Interview with Felix Zulauf – Financial Markets Are More Distorted than Ever (Acting Man, March 26, 2015):
Risks and Opportunities
Investors started off 2015 with a slow global economy, low oil prices, a strong Dollar, and a deflationary Europe with great uncertainties on the progress of the US economy and the recent launch of Europe’s quantitative easing. The question is, what opportunities lie ahead? This article highlights the main topics covered in an interview between Mr. Frank Suess, CEO and Chairman of BFI Capital Group, with the globally renowned Swiss fund manager, Mr. Felix Zulauf. Mr. Zulauf currently heads Zulauf Asset Management, a Switzerland-based hedge fund and has forty years of experience with global financial markets and asset management. He has been a member of the Barron’s Roundtable for over twenty years.
Felix Zulauf, Swiss fund manager and long-standing member of the Barron’s roundtable
Frank Suess: Felix, first I would like to thank you for taking the time to speak to us. You are a renowned investor and fund manager with a solid track record over the past 40 years. In those 40 years, you’ve encountered many highs and lows in financial markets and business cycles. What do you think about the current cycle we are in?
Felix Zulauf: The current cycle is very unusual, because never before have we seen authorities, central banks in particular, intervening on such a large scale and pumping so much money into global financial markets. Hence, global financial markets are more distorted than ever before and accordingly, the risks are very high. Investing becomes very difficult in such an unprecedented environment, as it can’t be compared to previous situations. Continue reading »
– Kyle Bass Warns “The Fed Is Backed Into A Corner… Equities Are My Biggest Liquidity Worry” (ZeroHedge, March 28, 2015):
While Kyle Bass is usually the smartest man in the room, among this crowd he is Einstein as he carefuly explains – while sitting politely during status quo interruptions – the real state of the world “the unintended consequence of QE has been to widen the income gap,” what is behind the Potemkin Village of the stock markets, how The Fed is “backed into a corner” of raising rates against their will, and why bond yields (at the long-end) will drop further. Currency wars are net positive, as Greg Ip suggests, and will not end well, as he concludes in one section, “why haven’t all the Yen left Japan already?”
“How many rich people do you know today that are poorer than they were at the peak in 06/07 (apart from Dick Fuld), I don’t think I know any.. QE has been distributive to the rich… but now that the world has started this policy it is unable to end it…
the next recession will be a hard one because the tools in the toolbox are not there to avert a severe downturn…” Continue reading »