Visar inlägg från juli, 2016

This interest rate obsession is amazing M4

Steve Hanke

Gillian Tett: Female Trump supporters feel they have numerous other reasons to back him, ones that are more important than gender.

To an angry, dispossessed voter, Trump offers a vision of change that Clinton does not; to them, his anti-establishment speeches and “Make America Great Again” mantra are positive and memorable in a way that none of the slogans from the Clinton camp has managed to be. As Michelle Obama pointed out in her own thrillingly powerful speech in Philadelphia on Monday — to many voters today it no longer seems odd that a woman is running for president.  That is an extraordinary achievement. But it could also be a tragedy for Clinton; it means that the Democrats cannot assume they can win female votes “just” by using the gender card. Gillian Tett, FT 29 July 2016 Gillian Tett serves as US managing editor. She writes weekly columns for the Financial Times, covering a range of economic, financial, political and social issues. In 2014, she was named Columnist of the Year in the British Press Awards and was the first recipient of the Royal Anthropological Institute Marsh Award.  In Ju

IMF’s top staff misled their own board, made a series of calamitous misjudgments in Greece,

IMF’s top staff misled their own board, made a series of calamitous misjudgments in Greece, became euphoric cheerleaders for the euro project, ignored warning signs of impending crisis, and collectively failed to grasp an elemental concept of currency theory.  This is the lacerating verdict of the IMF’s top watchdog on the fund’s tangled political role in the eurozone debt crisis, the most damaging episode in the history of the Bretton Woods institutions.  Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph 29 July 2016

Nordea Realräntefond + 6,65 % i år

About real-interest rates at IntCom

Why the Federal Reserve is rethinking everything,

The Federal Reserve is being forced to reevaluate its most basic assumptions about the economy after trillions of dollars of stimulus and years of ultralow interest rates have failed to generate a more robust recovery. “I think all of us are involved in a process of constantly re-evaluating where is that neutral rate going,” Yellen  told  reporters last month.  “Maybe more of what’s causing this neutral rate to be low are factors that are not going to be rapidly disappearing but will be part of the new normal.” Among the most prominent theories is one championed by former Treasury secretary and Harvard economist Lawrence H. Summers, which argues that deeper forces are discouraging business investment and miring the economy in an era of so-called "secular stagnation." Ylan Q. Mui, Washington Post 27 July 2016

Zero rates and quantitative easing merely drive up asset prices, Ambrose

There is by now near universal agreement that reliance on zero rates and quantitative easing merely to drive up asset prices have reached their limits,  rewarding the owners of capital with precious little trickle-down to the working poor.  T he politics are poisonous. Simon Ward from Henderson Global Investors says his key measure - six-month real M1 money - is rising at a rate of 10.5pc, the fastest since the post-Lehman stimulus. Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph 27 July 2016

Carl Bildt: Aachen has turned into the Mecca for true believers in the EU’s founding myth.

European leaders have gathered time and again by Charlemagne’s ancient throne in Aachen, in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, to deliver visionary speeches announcing that the time has finally come to build a truly integrated Europe.  Aachen has turned into the Mecca for true believers in the EU’s founding myth. ... Simply put, the idea of the Union must resonate with all Europeans, not just those who get invited to exclusive meetings. Carl Bildt, Project Syndicate 19 July 2016

EMU will stop

Critics from Britain rightly argue that the monetary union is failing because of a divergence of economic performance. There are now backstops in place but they will not stop member states drifting further apart.  The solution is at the very least a central authority in charge of banking and finance, a small budget and some joint debt instruments.  If politics does not allow this, you have to accept the adage that if something is not sustainable it will come to an end. Wolfgang Münchau, FT 24 July 2016 Stein's Law: If something cannot go on for ever it will stop.  Herbert Stein The Public Interest nr 97 Fall 1989

US inflation-linked bonds snapped up by investors

Prospect of economic growth encourages purchase of $13bn of securities Mutual and exchange traded funds that invest in Tips have seen six straight weeks of positive inflows FT 22 July 2016 About Realräntor - Real Interest Rates - at IntCom

Fiscal austerity is going out of fashion

Mr Trump has caught the policy mood, not just in America but also across the western world.  For the Cleveland convention is certainly not the only place where fiscal austerity is going out of fashion.

In late 2008 Queen Elizabeth II famously asked why no one had seen the downturn coming.

In late 2008, during a briefing at the London School of Economics, Queen Elizabeth II famously asked why no one had seen the downturn coming . For economists employed in the financial sector, there is an implicit bias towards optimism.  As one once told me "There is no incentive to forecast a recession, If you are wrong, you'll be fired. And if you're right, no one will thank you."  Or as Keynes put it, Worldly wisdom teaches that it is better for reputation to fail conventionally than to succeed unconventionally. Buttonwood, The Economist 21 July 2016 About The Queen at IntCom About The Queen at IntCom

Wolf: The remedies they /Trump Le Pen/ offer are bogus. But the illnesses are real.

Real income stagnation over a longer period than any since the war is a fundamental political fact If governing elites continue to fail to offer convincing cures, they might soon be swept away and, with them, the effort to marry democratic self-government with an open and co-operative world order. Martin Wolf FT  19 July 2016 What is the “stall speed” of an economy? Unemployment tends to rise when GDP growth falls below about 2.5-3 per cent Gavyn Davies blog June 15, 2011

The Economist: Deutsche Bank trades at about a quarter of the notional value of its net assets.

If it were a non-financial firm it would be broken up.  But big banks cannot be dismantled without risking chaos. The Economist 16 July 2016 The Stoxx 600 index of European financial institutions fell 5.6 per cent on Monday Deutsche Bank led a rout in global bank stocks FT 8 Febr 2016

Korekiyo Takahashi and Helicopter Money

Bank of Japan: a distant whirring sound Helicopter money is more effective, so it’s bad news for bond holders As well as disrupting the market, bidding ever higher prices for bonds renders more costly the ultimate, paradoxical denouement of the policy, when inflation finally arrives, causing yields to rise and bond prices to crash.  Really credible stimulus should avoid this. FT 18 July 2016 As the policy debate intensifies, investors might spare a thought for Korekiyo Takahashi,  Bank of Japan governor from 1911 to 1913.   Gillian Tett, FT 2 September 2010 The ghost of Takahashi haunts Abenomics Edward Chancellor examines the similarities between Japan’s current economic situation and that of the 1930s FT 31 March 2013

Republican Platform Unexpectedly Calls For A Return To Glass-Steagall

a law which was repealed under President Bill Clinton, husband of, well you know... While we know better than to trust politician promises, we were surprised to read that today the GOP joined the Democrats in calling for a repeal of Gramm-Leach-Bliley, the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 pushed through by none other than Bill Clinton,  and will seek a return to Glass-Steagall, the banking law launched in 1933 in the aftermath of the Great Depression meant to prohibit commercial banks from engaging in the investment business, and which according to many was one of the catalysts that led to the Global Financial Crisis. According to The Hill, Paul Manafort, Donald Trump's campaign manager, told reporters gathered in Cleveland Monday that the GOP platform would include language advocating for a return of that law, which was repealed under President Bill Clinton, husband of, well you know... Zerohedge 18 July 2016 The 1933 Glass-Steagall Act separated commercial

"Marit Paulsen har en förmåga att låta absolut trovärdig oavsett vad hon säger" Enander

Hon lät lika övertygande som socialdemokrat som hon efter 1998 gjorde som folkpartist. Själv skulle jag, ärligt talat, inte ens köpa en begagnad bil av Marit Paulsen. Hennes övertygande röst till trots. Detta var, sa hon, hennes sista offentliga framträdande.  Tja, vi får väl se, tänker jag. Crister Enander, HD Kultur 17 juli 2016 Full text Om Marit Paulsen hos IntCom Marit Paulsen om Murens fall:  Omprövningens tid! Det är med stor osäkerhet jag försöker beskriva ett slags förvirring, rent av en smula hjälplöshet inför det som händer i Östeuropa. Vart tog alla drömmar vägen? Vart är alla de ORD jag har använt? Var är de begrepp jag tänkt i? Marit Paulsen i TCO-Tidningen nr 2/1990 De ryska ungdomarna tycks vara mycket tränade att uppfatta det icke klart uttalade, de reagerar kvickt, den snackige håller andan en sekund: Säg inte - don’t say - don’t say - att vi rest till det demokratiska Sverige och kommit till en kommunistfamilj? · Nä ,nä - inte så heller. "Säg

Släpp in Balkan och Turkiet Byt kronan mot euron DN-ledare 2009-09-19

-  Euron har för länge sedan bevisat sin styrka. Läs mer här 

The Dogs Have Barked and the European Caravan Must be Stopped

The Dogs Have Barked and the European Caravan Must be Stopped  – A short history of  where we are, how we got here and what we do next Bill Cash, The European Journal Nov-Dec 2007

Monetary policy is but one factor in the grand economic equation and should certainly not be the most important one Mauldin

We shouldn’t have to talk about central banks and their leaders every time we discuss the economy.  Monetary policy is but one factor in the grand economic equation and should certainly not be the most important one. Yet the Fed and its fellow central banks have been hogging center stage for nearly a decade now. That might be okay if their policies made sense, but abundant evidence says they do not.  Overreliance on low interest rates to stimulate growth led our central bankers to zero interest rates. John Mauldin 16 July 2016

The European Central Bank’s grand plans have not brought Southern Europe back from depression-like conditions. Italy Mauldin

I cannot state this strongly enough: Italy is dramatically important, and it is on the brink of a radical break with European Union policy that will cascade into countries all over Europe and see them going their own way with regard to their banking systems.  Italian politicians cannot allow Italian citizens to lose hundreds of billions, if not trillions, of euros to bank “bail-ins.” John Mauldin 16 July 2016

Housing Bubble 2.0

Jag tycker det är skriande uppenbart att räntan världen över är för låg och att en större del av stimulanserna borde ske via finanspolitiken. Strategin synes vara att det gäller att stabilisera, helst höja, villapriserna så att konsumenterna främst i USA skall återgå till att konsumera med lånta pengar, dvs just det som ledde fram till katastrofen. Det skrev jag den 5 december 2009 Det ser ut som om det har lyckats. Housing Bubble 2.0, zerohedge 15 July 2016 Men i dag är räntan redan runt noll och vad händer när den nya bubblan spricker?

Anders Borg: In fact, federalism is probably the single greatest threat to the future of the EU. Welcome in the club.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has called for more federalism – for more power to be delegated to the EU’s governing institutions.I consider Juncker a close friend, but I strongly disagree with him about this idea.  Moving toward deeper integration or centralized control would be a dangerous path to take, for it would increase the risk of other members choosing to leave the EU.  And, beyond that hazard, there are other reasons to avoid federalist measures. Consider the main economic argument offered by federalists: the eurozone needs a common fiscal policy to harmonize policy decisions, such as taxation. This is wrong for two reasons. First, the EU’s fundamental economic problems are structural. Europeans will continue to gravitate toward populism if they do not see improvements in their standard of living, which will happen only with higher productivity growth. A single fiscal policy would not bring this about – and could make the problem worse. The second

Could Italy Bring Down The Euro?

A move by Italy — the third-largest economy in the eurozone — to abandon the euro could strike a potentially fatal blow to the currency and to the bloc itself. Meanwhile, at more than 130% of GDP, Italy has one of the biggest public debt burdens in Europe, second only to Greece. "A perfect storm of slow or zero Italian economic growth, low interest rates and politically connected, often corrupt, lending have combined to create a situation where the Italian financial system is in need of a large rescue." — Mihir Kapadia, Sun Global Investments. M5S blames the euro for Italy's woes, and many Italians agree. The eurosceptic Five Star Movement (M5S) has overtaken Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's Democratic Party (PD) in several opinion polls and is now the most popular political party in Italy. Zerohedge 15 July 2016 About Italy at IntCom

There was no Italian “bubble” prior to 2008

and there are no signs that Italian banks have been particularly irresponsible,  but even the most conservative banks will get into trouble when nominal GDP drops 25% below the pre-crisis trend. The Market Monetarist 12 July 2016

Ingen fara. Fattas bara, US banks to dish out $96bn after stress tests

The industry is set to distribute about 16 per cent more capital than a year ago after 30 of 33 banks passed the Federal Reserve’s latest stress tests without conditions FT 30 June 2016 Comptroller of the currency warns on looser underwriting standards and concentrations in portfolios FT 12 July 2016

Deutsche Welle: The once-proud Deutsche Bank is now threatening the global financial system

Things keep getting worse and worse, though Brexit offers a tiny glimmer of hope, writes  DW's Henrik Böhme.4 July 2016 Shares of the 147-year-old company now trade for a paltry 8% of its peak price in May 2007. Zerohedge

Det riktiga Kalla Kriget. Berlin 1961


Bill White world’s central banks were making a mistake with their single-minded focus on monetary policy, Mauldin

Bill White is a former BIS chief economist and now chairs the OECD Economic Development and Review Committee.  He famously pushed Alan Greenspan to raise interest rates in 2003 so the Fed would have a cushion to use in the next crisis – which Bill thought would come along in a few years. Sure enough, he was right.  Bill told us last year that the world’s central banks were making a mistake with their single-minded focus on monetary policy.  He noted, correctly, that monetary solutions have not helped, and he stated emphatically that more of the same won’t help, either. Interest rates have an important signaling function.  What happens when the signals are wrong? People make bad decisions, of course.  And, for at least the last six years (perhaps more), the signals have been very wrong indeed.  John Mauldin 10 July 2016 We need a Plan B to curb the debt headwinds An unsustainable level of private sector debt is the main factor explaining the present severe downturn, 

Chief economist at Deutsche Bank, says EU banks need a 150 billion euros bailout

David Folkerts-Landau, chief economist at Deutsche Bank, says “Europe is Seriously Ill”, and EU banks need a €150 billion bailout program. He suggests a huge EU bailout program.  Private creditors should not participate. Rules prohibit state aid. However... Die Welt via Mish 10 July 2016 The EU rules are “very clear” on when creditors should face compulsory losses, known as bail-ins, Mr Dijsselbloem said. “The only thing that to me is very important is that we respect what we have agreed between us, because otherwise everything will be questioned in Europe” he said .

Germany’s surplus on the current account $285bn, or 8.5 per cent of GDP overtaking the Chinese, Davies

Germany’s surplus on the current account of its balance of payments surged to a record level last year, reaching $285bn, or 8.5 per cent of gross domestic product.  It is now overtaking the Chinese surplus as the largest trade imbalance in the world.  Gavyn Davies, FT 10 July 2015

UN: By 2100 at least 4bn of the world’s 11bn people will be African

against just 1bn today. FT 7 July 2016 Hakuna matata Boko Haram

Janerik Larsson, EU och Freden

- Minnet av andra världskrigets förstörelse har passerat in i historieböckerna och tankar som t ex att EU först och främst är ett fredsbevarande projekt möter idag främst höjda, förvånade ögonbryn från nya generationer. Det skrev Janerik Larsson i SvD den 30 juni 2016 Han och de andra EU-kramarna vill få oss att tro att det var EU, tidigare EG och ännu tidigare EEC, som skapade freden i Europa. Men det var nog tvärtom. Det rådde fred och samförstånd i Västeuropa under 50- och 60-talen. Det gav möjlighet att skapa dessa institutioner. Det gäller att kunna skilja på orsak och verkan. Mer om EU och freden här.

In his latest just released monthly letter, Bill Gross lays out the global economy as an analogy to Monopoly where the narrative only works if everyone gets $200 in cash on every rotation around the board.

It’s the $200 of cash (which in the economic scheme of things represents new “credit”) that is responsible for the ongoing health of our finance-based economy.  Without new credit, economic growth moves in reverse and individual player “bankruptcies” become more probable. Zerohedge 6 July 2016

Hög Dollar - Bra för Sverige

USD/SEK Det var när dollarn sjunkit från 9:40 till 5:30 som Carl Bildt m fl till varje pris ville försvara kronkursen Läs mer här

6 books recommended by Richard Thaler, a founding father of behavioral economics

MarketWatch 5 July 2016 The past decade has been a triumph for behavioural economics,   the fashionable cross-breed of psychology and economics.  Tim Harford, FT 21 March 2014

Martin Wolf: The question is whether the best way to preserve the EU is to make it a prison, rather than a desirable place of refuge.

As Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, argues:  “The spectre of a break-up is haunting Europe and a vision of a federation doesn’t seem to me to be the best answer to it.”  Martin Wolf, FT 5 July 2016

EU på väg att bli ett Gross-Jugoslawien 25 år efter inbördeskrigets början

Yugoslavia 1991: How Can a War Start If Nobody Wants It? At the time, Bosnia and Herzegovina was one of the six constituent republics that made up the multi-ethnic Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Fighting had broken out in the neighboring republic of Croatia... Der Spiegel, 4 July 2016 Reinfeldt leder ett parti och en regering som vill ansluta Sverige till Euroland. Därför kan han, lika lite som andra EMU-kramare, inte erkänna att det är något fel på tanken på att bunta ihop, slå samman, länder som Tyskland och Grekland, Irland, Spanien och Sverige i något som liknar ett Gross-Jugoslavien. Englund blog 11 augusti 2011 Jag är övertygad om att det ekonomiska system som byggt upp i Jugoslavien i form av arbetarstyrda företag tillhör en av vårt århundrades mest betydelsefulla sociala innovationer. Bo Södersten i "Den svenska sköldpaddan" 1975 "Men EU är i alla fall bra för Freden"