Visar inlägg från juni, 2016

Mats Johansson om Lars Tobisson, Löntagarfonder. Så nära men ändå inte

Framförallt pekar Tobisson på en faktor av intresse även för dagens debatt – hur nära det var att några få aktivister lyckades genomdriva ett systemskifte utan motstånd, en skrivbordsprodukt av några få i den centrala maktbubblan:  Carl Tham (FP), Anna Hedborg (S), Allan Larsson (Metall) och Lennart Bodström (TCO). Läs mer här

Den tyskvänliga högern representeras här av Kristoffer Tamsons, stabs- och planeringschef i statsrådsberedningen under statsminister Fredrik Reinfeldt, i dag vice gruppledare (M).

Sverige har nu mycket att vinna på en omorientering av Europa­politiken.  Lämna det naiva sökandet efter en nordisk–anglosaxisk axel och fördjupa relationerna med Baltikum och Tyskland, skriver Kristoffer Tamsons (M). SvD 27 juni 2016 Den svenska utrikespolitikens eviga fråga. Skall vi följa Tyskland eller skall vi följa England. Englund blog 23 Februari 2016 Engelbrechtdivisionen eller Division Engelbrecht, efter sin befälhavare general Erwin Engelbrecht, kallas 163. infanteridivisionen ur tyska armén som under andra världskriget med svenskt tillstånd transiterades på järnväg genom det neutrala Sverige till Finland från det ockuperade Norge.  Transiteringen ägde rum mellan den 25 juni och 12 juli 1941.

Italy is preparing a €40bn rescue of its financial system as bank shares collapse on the Milan bourse

An Italian government task force is watching events hour by hour, pledging all steps necessary to ensure the stability of the banks.  Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph 27 June 2016

“The real elephant in the room is we’ll have low and negative rates for a very long period of time.”

“The real elephant in the room is not the U.K. vote or a Trump presidency,” Major said.  “The real elephant in the room is we’ll have low and negative rates for a very long period of time.” Low rates are also a natural consequence of too much government borrowing after the financial crisis. While it gave economies a much-needed boost, the debt burden robbed many countries of their spending power, which could have supported growth over the next decade.  This month, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development warned the world economy is slipping into a self-fulfilling “low-growth trap.” And without a pickup in growth, there’s every reason to believe that investors will continue to seek out the safety of government bonds. Bloomberg 27 June 2016

Britain was last conquered by an invading army in 1066. In 2016, it repelled an attempted conquest by the E.U.’s nomenklatura.

Brexit refutes the progressive narrative that history has an inexorable trajectory that “experts” discern and before which all must bow.  The E.U.’s contribution to this fable is its vow to pursue “ever-closer union.” Yes, ever. George F. Will, Washington Post 24 June 2016

Brexit vote might drive the rest of the EU member states towards decisions they should have taken 10 years ago, such as the establishment of a fiscal union and a proper banking union. Münchau

If not, the eurozone will crumble.  And the EU will lose much of its political life force, even if it formally remains in place. Wolfgang Münchau, FT 24 June 2016

Cameron, Churchill, 1940 and referendum

- At my office I sit 2 yards away from the Cabinet Room where Winston Churchill decided, in May 1940, to fight on against Hitler. The best and greatest decision perhaps anyone’s ever made in our country. He didn’t want to be alone, David Cameron said, according to FT 20 June 2016. But isn't it the other way around? Churchill decided that Britain should fight alone, instead of being part of a united Europe under German leadership. FT 20 June 2016 -  Remember Winston Churchill’s phrase about "fighting them on the beaches". Well our beaches are entirely subject to the European Commission’s directives. Article by John Blundell in the Business 12/3 2006 One of the great clichés of politics is that Britain has no written Constitution. Britain’s constitution is called the Treaty of Accession. It has been supplemented by the Treaties of Maastricht and Nice.

The Myth of Austerity and Growth, Noah Smith

The principles of Keynesian fiscal policy -- which have slowly been coming back into vogue -- say that tightening spending is the worst thing you can do in the middle of a recession.  More generally, it isn’t clear just how austerity is supposed to work its positive magic. The main claim seems to be the rather vague idea that lower budget deficits increase business confidence. Blanchard has shifted his stance. In a 2013 paper with Daniel Leigh, he showed that the IMF had been consistently wrong in its forecasts of the effects of austerity.  The more beneficial the IMF predicted that austerity would be, the more incorrect its predictions were! In 2010, the IMF admitted that its demands exacerbated the pain of South Korea’s financial crisis in the 1990s.  And in 2016, the Fund released a report questioning whether its entire economic philosophy had major weaknesses. Noah Smith, Bloomberg 22 June 2016

Gunnar Wetterberg än inte den som sticker ur hakan om inflationsmålet

Dags att utreda inflationsmålet. Varför är just två procents inflation så önskvärd?  Det frågar Gunnar Wetterberg i Expressen den 19 juni 2016. Han erinrar om att för tio år sedan skrev chefsekonomen Bill White vid centralbankernas samarbetsorgan BIS ett varnande papper. Om bankerna håller räntan låg på grund av den låga inflationen exploderar istället priserna på aktier och fastigheter, med alla risker det skapar.  Gunnar Wetterberg i Expressen den 19 juni 2016 Mer om och av Gunnar Wetterberg PS Jag ser nu vad han skrev åtta år efter folkomröstningen om euron Varken Greklands finanser eller ens euron är värda det vågspel som en finanspolitisk union skulle betyda.  Risken är påtaglig att politiken håller på att skena ifrån sitt folkliga stöd. Gunnar Wetterberg, Expressen, 23 december 2011 Han är väldigt duktig, Gunnar Wetterberg, men han är ingen hjälte.

Macroeconomic stability still depends on creating more debt than we can easily handle. Turner Wolf

 “Precisely,” he /Adair Turner/ says.  “We are in the absurd position where we have so much debt that we can only afford it by having interest rates at zero, which creates an incentive to create some more debt.” Martin Wolf FT Lunch  June 2016 Between debt and the devil by Adair Turner

Jag tror inte att det är någon som vill se en kraftig prisnedgång i Stockholm, säger Anna Breman.

"Jag tror inte att det är någon som vill se en kraftig prisnedgång i Stockholm, det skulle ha väldigt negativa konsekvenser för hushållen och för svensk ekonomi”, säger Anna Breman. Bra diagram.

A late sell-off on Wall Street left the S&P 500 nursing its longest run of daily losses since February. FT.

FT 15 June 2016

Brexit: whether to restore the full self-government of this nation, or to continue living under a higher supranational regime, ruled by a European Council

Stripped of distractions, it comes down to an elemental choice: whether to restore the full self-government of this nation, or to continue living under a higher supranational regime, ruled by a European Council that we do not elect in any meaningful sense, and that the British people can never remove, even when it persists in error. My Europhile Greek friend Yanis Varoufakis and I both agree on one central point, that today's EU is a deformed halfway house that nobody ever wanted.  His solution is a great leap forward towards a United States of Europe with a genuine parliament holding an elected president to account.  I do not think this is remotely possible, or would be desirable if it were, but it is not on offer anyway. Ambrose, Telegraph 13 June 2016

In both Greece and Japan, excessive debts will be reduced by means previously regarded as unthinkable. Turner

Since 2010, official discussion of Greek debt has moved fitfully from fantasy to gradually dawning reality.  The rescue program for Greece launched that year assumed that a falling debt ratio could be achieved without any private debt write-offs.  After a huge restructuring of privately held debt in 2011, the ratio was forecast to reach 124% by 2020, a target the International Monetary Fund believed could be achieved, “but not with high probability.”  Today, the IMF believes that a debt ratio of 173% is possible by 2020, but only if Greece’s official European creditors grant significant further debt relief. A significant write-down is inevitable, and the longer it is put off, the larger it eventually will be. Adair Turner, Project Syndicate 10 June 2016 Adair Turner, former chairman of the Financial Services Authority, in his book Between Debt and the Devil. Martin Wolf: Helicopter drops might not be far away, FT 23 February 2016

Säpomän pekar ut Olof Palme-mördare, Barrling Wallström Tomas Fischer

Palmegruppen har, enligt spaningsledaren Dag Andersson, under lång tid försökt arrangera ett förhör med Kegö och Barrling.  Sekretessfrågan kring deras hemligstämplade uppgifter har dock stått i vägen. Expressen 12 juni 2016 Men trots mediatrycket lades locket på och regeringen Ingvar Carlsson fattade beslut om sekretess i ärendet. Buggningen fick inte utredas och leda till åtal. De två Säpoutredare som arbetade med uppgifterna under sent 1980-tal, Walter Kegö och Jan-Henrik Barrling, belades med munkavle och kom i stället att starkt förknippas med den så kallade Ebbe Carlsson-affären. Jan-Henrik Barrling ville i början av 1990-talet vittna om den så kallade diplomatbuggningen men stoppades av regeringen, efter ett beslut av dåvarande biträdande civilministern Margot Wallström. Först efter 25 år, i början av 2014, avslöjade Expressen att Palmegruppen hållit ett första förhör med Kegö och Barrling den 16 maj 2014.  Sekretess bedömdes dock hindra dem från att kunna ber

Bill Gross $10tn negative-yield bonds a ‘supernova that will explode one day’

Central banks in Europe and Japan have moved their benchmark interest rates below zero. This, combined with investors’ ravenous appetite for bonds, has pushed the yields of more than $10tn of sovereign debt into negative territory. This is costing investors billions of dollars and forcing many to buy increasingly longer-dated or more lowly rated bonds that still offer positive yields — and has sparked concerns that investors could be exposed to painful losses if yields, which move inversely to prices, snap back up. FT 10 June 2016 Next Bubble U.S. Government Bonds Bill Gross

If the IMF does not get the concessions it seeks, it is honour bound to withdraw from the Greek mess. Wolf

It should do so. It might be unable to save Greece. But it can at least save itself. Martin Wolf, FT 7 June 2016

Money and Debt and Helicopters. For economists by Simon Wren-Lewis

As regular readers will know, my advocacy of helicopter money (HM) does not depend on it being different from, or better (at stimulating demand) than, fiscal policy 7 June 2016 Money and Debt

Bill Gross made a surprising announcement when he said that he was starting to short credit.

This 40-year period of time has been quite remarkable  – "a grey if not black swan event that cannot be repeated." zerohedge 2 June 2016

It’s not just Brexit — Greece, Spain, France are also on the brink MarketWatch

Matthew Lynn, MarketWatch, June 1, 2016

Ingves: Bankerna är stora i relation till svensk ekonomi, tätt sammanlänkade med varandra och har samtidigt stor exponering mot bostadssektorn.

Riksbanken konstaterar en ökad sannolikhet för ett prisfall på bostadsmarknaden, vilket främst borde slå mot högt skuldsatta hushåll med rörlig ränta.  Samtidigt varnar Riksbanken för svåra följdeffekter.  Bankerna är stora i relation till svensk ekonomi, tätt sammanlänkade med varandra och har samtidigt stor exponering mot bostadssektorn.  Därtill är de beroende av omvärldens förtroende för sin finansiering, som till stor del består av marknadslån i utländsk valuta. SvD/TT 1 juni 2016 Banker och hushåll alltmer sårbara Riksbanken 1 juni 2016 Stefan Ingves och Englunds varningsord Englund blog 19 november 2015

The alchemy is “the belief that money kept in banks can be taken out whenever depositors ask for it”, Wolf

Lord Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England.  His book is called The End of Alchemy. Central banks would still act as lenders of last resort. But they would no longer be forced to lend against virtually any asset, since that very possibility must create moral hazard. They would agree the terms on which they would lend against assets in a crisis, including relevant haircuts, in advance. In spring 2015, the value of the collateral of UK banks at the BoE was £314bn and of bank reserves was £317bn. This makes total liquid assets of £631bn.  That is to be compared with deposits of £1.82tn.   Martin Wolf, FT 31 May 2016 Mervyn King at IntCom Moral Hazard