EconoMonitor

Nouriel Roubini's Global EconoMonitor

RGE Monitor Launches Today the New Europe EconoMonitor

Dear RGE Monitor readers, we are launching today the new Europe EconoMonitor.The URL for this is: http://www.rgemonitor.com/euro-monitor 

A group of about twenty-five leading European economists or experts in European economic issues will write regularly in this new venue and provide their insights and views on the important economic issues faced by Europe, both as a region and as individual countries.

The topics that will be covered are broad but will include the variety of macroeconomic issues and financial issues that are faced by the Europe today, both by the members of the European Union (EU) – including its recent accession countries – and other European economies still outside the EU.

Particular emphasis will be given to the policy issues surrounding the European Union and its economic and political development, the European Monetary Union, its currency the Euro, the cyclical and structural macroeconomic and policy issues faced by Europe, and the market and financial issues that the recent turmoil and volatility in financial markets have brought to the surface.

This group of economists includes leading scholars and experts from academia, former or current policy makers and private sector and financial market practitioners from a variety of European countries or with a European expertise.

We are confident that this new venture will foster the dialogue and debate on the economic issues and challenges faced by Europe as its economic and financial size and role grows in the global economy. There are many other excellent online venues where such a dialogue occurs. Our venture will emphasize macro, market and financial issues – rather than micro-oriented or other economic questions – and will cover topics that are of great interest to markets and investors. This new Europe EconoMonitor is thus complementary with other high-quality initiatives that are fostering the economic dialogue within Europe.

The Europe EconoMonitor is freely available to all interested readers; such readers have also the ability to freely post their comments on the items that are written by the distinguished roster of European economists and experts.  We are thus hopeful that we will be able to create an intellectual community – open to a very broad audience – where these economic and policy issues are widely discussed – by both contributors and readers – in a constructive and intellectually stimulating way.

The first contribution to this Europe EconoMonitor is a piece on “Germany: Supply-Side Homework Unfinished”  by Michael Burda who is Professor of Economics at the School of Business and Economics, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany. 

The next contributions are by Dennis Snower – director of the Kiel Institute – who has written on the fallout of global credit crunch and how it has affected the US and Europe; a piece by Sebastian Dullien  (professor at the FHTW Berlin – University of Applied Science) continuing the debate on the structural reforms in Germany; and a piece by Philippe d’Arvisenet  (global head of economic research at BNP Paribas, and an associate professor of economics at Paris University) on ECB’s monetary policy.

 

 

 

 

244 Responses to “RGE Monitor Launches Today the New Europe EconoMonitor”

Dave ChiangOctober 12th, 2007 at 1:15 pm

 From phone records obtained under the freedom of information act, Helicopter Bernanke consulted with Citicorp’s Robert Rubin before slashing the discount rate last month by 0.5 percent. I have no doubt that the Banksters on Wall Street profit from insider information from the Federal Reserve. In stark contrast, the Federal Reserve no longer publicly discloses broad M-3 money supply statistics (ie. private estimates show M-3 money supply exploding at a 15% annual rate). One would think that along with inflation, money supply would be among the most important statistics that would be disclosed. Obviously, Goldman Sachs, Citicorp, JP Morgan are privy to monetary policy decisions by the Federal Reserve board with the revolving door of employment. The recent Federal Reserve decision to slash interest rates was a de facto “moral hazard” bailout of leveraged and reckless Hedge Funds. The Fed bailout has resulted in the huge devaluation of the US currency, and a rising “real” rate of inflation with soaring food, energy, and commodity prices. It is time that we abolish the Federal Reserve in the interest of the public good.  

dudeOctober 12th, 2007 at 1:50 pm

Dave….  I wonder if the SEC would like to comment on your subject, or just remain silent and look the other way, as they have been trained to do.

JMaOctober 12th, 2007 at 2:26 pm

this site is so full of conspiracy theories and negativity… i wanted to pass along something positive – a long stock sector recommendation. After finally reading this past week’s Barron’s, i noticed an article promoting of all things prison stocks 🙂 . this is one long recommendation i wholeheartedly agree with. the author points to finding companies with prisons in areas of population growth. this misses the true point of more prisons. inflating the price of everything including basic necessities intentionally will with 100% certainty create higher per capita crime everywhere in the USA. the PEs were high on these stocks, but the growth will be there and you better believe there will be plenty of funding from Washington to jail all the growing number of people intentionally left in the gutter of this inflationary initiative under way.  i have heard rumors of people leaving the keys to their negative LTV homes at the banks. I have also heard rumors of people burning their homes for insurance money (a suburb of Chicago reportedly had a meeting between fire department and police authorities to discuss the problem) well, if you are employed, but can not pay for food and shelter, then why would you bother working ? would you resort to crime ? Ben, Hank, “W” ?  God Bless America  

GuestOctober 12th, 2007 at 3:03 pm

 Why a Weak Dollar Hurts U.S. Manufacturers  http://www.europac.net/newspop.asp?id=10379&from=home    The vast majority of economists are currently hailing the freefall of the dollar as a windfall for American business. While some domestic manufacturers may enjoy some initial benefits from a weaker dollar, they will ultimately suffer many adverse consequences as well. More importantly, the dollar’s demise is a disaster for American consumers.    Too often overlooked however is how the weakening ollar also works to increase costs for domestic manufacturers. A falling dollar raises the costs of raw materials, such as oil and metals, while simultaneously decreasing the relative costs that foreign competitors pay for the same supplies.    But it is not just raw materials prices that rise. Perhaps even more important will be the prices of foreign-made components that are used in American factories. In fact, many American “manufacturers” are really nothing more than assemblers of imported components. For example, take a domestic golf club company that supposedly manufactures clubs in the good old U.S.A. Such a company might import the heads from China, the shafts from Indonesia, and the grips from Mexico. The only thing the American company actually does is put the pieces together. So as the dollar loses value, the costs of importing all of the components will rise, making the finished product more expensive for Americans.    Another often overlooked cost of a weakening dollar is higher interest rates. Because a falling dollar diminishes the global appeal of dollar denominated debt, U.S. interest rates will inevitably rise, resulting in increasing capital costs for domestic manufacturers. Similarly, strengthening foreign currencies increases the appeal of non-dollar debt, reducing the capital costs paid by our foreign competitors.    Furthermore, as a weaker dollar forces up domestic consumer prices, American workers, suffering from declining real incomes, will ultimately press their employers for more generous pay raises. Rising nominal wages will eventually undermine the competitive gains associated with lower real wages that initially resulted from the falling dollar. Similarly, landlords will look to raise rents to make up for the falling purchasing power of their rental income.    Lastly, as rising interest rates and consumer prices combine to exacerbate the severity of the coming recession, federal tax receipts will inevitably decline causing the budget deficit to swell anew. A populist Congress will likely seek to impose even higher taxes on those businesses profiting during the hard times. So any advantages U.S. manufacturers might get from cheaper dollars may be lost to higher taxes.    Laying the hopes of America’s industrial salvation on currency devaluation will only backfire, leaving American manufacturers even less competitive in the future than they are today.  

Nouriel RoubiniOctober 12th, 2007 at 5:17 pm

In due time we will also have an Asia EconoMonitor. Any suggestions on names of folks who should be invited to contribute to this Asian blog? Nouriel 

McCrabOctober 12th, 2007 at 8:32 pm

Any suggestions on names of folks who should be invited to contribute to this Asian blog?   Christopher Wood and Marc Faber 

Dr SOctober 12th, 2007 at 9:07 pm

It is really necessary to have more “experts” tell us what we already know? The rich are @#*%&* over the rest at of us at such an alarming rate that it shouldn’t take a PhD in economics to figure this out.   How many economists does it take to bullshit the public?

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 7:24 am

Who are these rich people that are trying to F the poor over? It’s not the rich (in general)that put the Republicans in power. The areas with the highest per capita income are very worried about the distribution of wealth. I live in a very wealthy area and I can tell you that the rich are generally very concerned about fairness in taxes and access to education. We are not all running from party to party ,like the Hiltons. In the USA the poor are manipulated by a very few wealthy, in collusion with the religious right to think that redistribution of wealth is immoral. If we voted to repeal the Bush tax cuts, which states would be in favor? I’ll bet Mississippi would fight hard to remove the estate tax. NY and MA has no problem paying it.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 8:12 am

Jason B on 2007-10-13 04:20:34  Only a few, because the public wants to be bullshited  —  That’s like the old trash by those in TV programming, that “the public wants to see porn on TV”. So who is this “public”? There is no such person, of course.  It’s just a way to taking an abstract entity that supposedly represents “everyone” and claiming that the abstract “wants something”. Easy because the entity does not exist so it will never deny what is being said.  About as intelligent a claim as the old “people are poor in America because they want to”.  By the way, Noriel, your people should spend their time & effor grinding U.S. rather than Europe. I think there are far more unfinished business in the land of the free rather than the old country.    

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 8:16 am

hi NR,  you want Fed to cut rate again in comming FOMC because of your hard landing call right? haha, stock market will rally to the moon, if they cut again. by the way, T-bill rate is creeping up, guess economy is doing pretty well, stock market will continue to rally to the moon.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 8:31 am

If the Fed cuts it will create more bubbles. The stock market will go to the moon and we’ll be right back where we were in 1998-1999.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 8:35 am

What really should be done is to get a bunch of economists to daily blog about the ECONOMIC effects of the U.S. war in Iraq.  This should be done with sufficient consistency to get the White House to stop using the American “world savior” complex to fight wars here & there.  But I guess this is just an empty hope.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 8:46 am

haha, empty hope and broken dream??? doesn’t matter, everyone is too drunk with punch bowl that Fed always timely deliver to the stock market rally market. so much wealth is generated via thin air by cutting rate and printing more dollars. and NR kept begging for more rate cut to avoid his imaginary friend (recession). yes, lets keep the party alive, stock market to the moon.

Jason BOctober 13th, 2007 at 9:02 am

pub·lic (pŭb’lĭk) n. The community or the people as a whole. A group of people sharing a common interest.  The public wants the value of their home to appreciate forever. They don’t want to be told they bought at the top of the market. The want to be told that the stock market will go to the moon, not that we are in the end stage of The Bubble. The want to be told that the livin is easy and money is free, not that their paper wealth is an illusion based on unsustainable debt. The want to be told what they want to hear.  In other words, they want to be bullshited

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 9:11 am

Money Supply Growth: 24.3%!  Central bankers around the world can and do and are having an impact on money supply, liquidity, and equity prices.  Have a look at the October 11th St. Louis Fed’s U.S. Financial Data:   http://bigpicture.typepad.com/.shared/image.html?/photos/uncategorized/2007/10/12/mzm_101107.png  o more specifically quantify this, the accompanying table reveals the degree of money creation at an annualized rate. As of August 08th, MZM had a growth rate of 24.3%:  http://bigpicture.typepad.com/.shared/image.html?/photos/uncategorized/2007/10/12/mzm_table_101107_2.png  Note that this was before the Fed’s cut in the discount window rate, and prior to the global injection of liquidity by Central Bankers.  Despite the increase in dollars, and the decrease in dollar value, the government maintains the fiction that we have a strong dollar policy (U.S. Affects a Strong Silence on Its Weak Currency).  What is the impact of all this money supply growth? An incredible shrinking dollar.  While we can intellectualize about it, you really need to travel abroad to see the impact. Doug Kass is in Italy this week, and he is astonished at how feeble the dollar is overseas. The price of the Euro against the U.S. dollar really hits home once you leave the USA. He notes that those that have been “non plussed by the continued erosion of our currency will have a jolt of reality” when going abroad.  Some spending figures from Rome:   Dinner for two last night in Roma? $320 (U.S.)  Price of refueling an empty tank in my auto on Thursday? $175 (U.S.)  Hotel per night? $850 (U.S.)  Bellini? $24 (U.S.)  Dry Cleaning of shirt I poured Chianti on? $20 (U.S.)  Two days in Roma? Priceless!   Hello NR, your stupid rate cut begging is jacking up inflaion. You call yourself economist? Moron more likely.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 9:19 am

Written by Jason B on 2007-10-13 09:02:33  The want to be told what they want to hear.    In other words, they want to be bullshited  —  How many members of the public have you asked today if they want to be bullshitted to, Jason? And if none, how do you know that that is what they want?  Yes there are some people who like to hear things that make them feel good, whether they are true or not. But they are hardly representative of the entire public.  You are making a blanket statement similar to the one that “people in a country have earned their ruler”. It’s like saying that you (if you are a voting citizen living in the U.S.) have gotten what you earned with the Bush administration being in power. But how much could you by yourself actually do about that if you now did not happen to want Bush to be President?   A regular single person on the street does not have enough power to demand another President (in case s/he did not like Bush). Yes you can start some sort of movement (like moveon.org) but that takes a lot of time and normally people already have many other responsibilities in their everyday life. In any case it’s the same with being bullshitted to: a regular person does not have enough power (not to even mention understanding of the complex underlying issues, as not everyone is an economist nor should have to be) to demand that s/he is not bullshitted to.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 9:38 am

Treasury is addressing the bottlenecks of the CP in looking at the supply side and a pool of banks willing to liquefy their assets, but on the demand side ratings efficiency? Hedge funds intermediaries? reliable risk assessment ?banks several and joint as liquidity providers? Banks risks assessment ?  The securitisation of assets from Banks has not only shown its pain to the blind folded private investors but is showing now the absence of legal identity and responsibility when it comes to the work out of this « mess » (please see several cases as reported by M Shedlock http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/) For future use it should be made as legal obligation to the « prima facie » assets sellers and wholesale sellers to keep a minimum stake in risk and treasury in the bulk of assets under securitisation throughout the life of the assets, this rule should apply within the chain of bulk sellers and intermediaries and have several advantages:  To ensure the risk management, the risk assessment, the work out as a legal responsibility of the prima facie lender, or its heir the « sub managers ». To mitigate the full risk as dumped into the private individuals ledgers (this clause is nothing else but a replicate of the loans syndication clause among Banks and has amazingly been ignored when dumping the assets in the private individuals funds investment funds as set by Banks and insurance companies) . It may as well avoid the conflict of interest, Banks looking cleaver and their customer’s funds looking …much less cleaver (see Goldman Sachs and its global alpha fund down 40 Pct in a year, see BNP Paribas funds, see Axa IM in Luxembourg) 

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 9:43 am

Sorry I forgot to add  “It is not the Banks which need to be accomodated, but the private investors have to protected from the Banks”

DaltoniOctober 13th, 2007 at 10:14 am

Guest: “How many members of the public have you asked … And if none, how do you know that that is what they want?”  It’s not difficult to monitor public ignorance and attitudes. There are all sorts of polls, and voting patterns reveal a great deal.  The problem with the American people is that they are too dumb and too ill-informed to even understand what’s in their own interests. Much research has gone into this theme. For example, see the book “What’s the Matter with Kansas.”  Americans also are too dumb and ill-informed to avoid being manipulated by demagogues and propaganda. It was all too easy to distract these dumb, ill-informed Americans with phony, divisive social issues and propaganda while simultaneously raping them economically and in many cases destroying their way of life.   This is one of the reasons I will welcome the inevitable deep recession. Only then, when there’s no longer a chicken in the pot, will dumb Americans have a chance to understand what’s been done to them, and by whom. On the other hand, the machinery of propaganda, and the politics of distraction, demonization, and divisiveness have been so perfected by the current regime that Americans may be made to believe that old people, gay people, and immigrants are to blame for the fact that they have nothing but taxes and debt. 

RealThinkOctober 13th, 2007 at 10:17 am

http://www.reuters.com/article/reutersEdge/idUSL1227332920071012  Fund sees move away from dollar-based commodities Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:33am EDT  LONDON (Reuters) – Resource-rich countries will move away from the dollar as a base for the commodities they produce to protect their earnings as the dollar’s slide accelerates, UK-based Emergent Asset Management told Reuters.  The debate about commodity denomination has heated up over the past few months because the dollar has come under persistent selling pressure as markets started to price in economic slowdown and falling interest rates in the United States.  David Murrin, chief investment officer at Emergent thinks the chances of a re-denomination are high, but that it could take some time.  “I can see countries like Russia trying to price commodities in some other currency, possibly roubles,” he said. “Keep your eyes open for when and how rebasing starts to creep in.”  …  If the USD loses its international trade and reserve currency status, its value will plunge even more than envisaged by Krugman’s “Wily E. Coyote moment”, and the US will have to sharply curtail its imports. And do not focus on goods from China, which are for the most part non-essential. Focus on oil and petroleum products, for which the US imports 59% of its consumption.  You may say that the US also exports essential products like grains. True, but foreigners already have USD and USD-denominated debt in their reserves to buy US exports for decades. They do not need to sell anything to the US in order to buy something from them. Things could get interesting. How about the following piece of science-fiction?  “In reprisal to oil exporters not accepting dollars and demanding to be paid in their own currencies, the US mandates that US food exports cannot be paid in dollars and can only occur within a “food for oil” framework, whereby a country will be able to buy US food only for the value of the oil and natural gas it sells to the US. Such a de facto repudiation of the dollar puts the last nail on the coffin of its international status. Canada, not needing US food, cuts all exports of oil and natural gas to the US.” 

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 10:25 am

“dumb Americans have a chance to understand what’s been done to them, and by whom”??? what for?? believe what i say, 50% of dumb Americans will still vote for republican and republican president. might as well just deny them the chance to learn the truth. stay the course of higher deficit, falling dollar, and staying irag forever. oh yeah, if next president is republican again, then republican can start attacking iran. and american dumb or smart will be screwed.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 10:34 am

STATE TAXES INCREASING  See Mike Shedlock’s blog today for some recent info on new increases in state and city taxes. The proposed increase in property taxes in Chicago strikes me as being totally unreasonable. I doubt that a lot of small businesses and entrepreneurs can afford to pay it.  We’re starting to see a situation where state and local Gov’t are realizing that they cannot meet their forward obligations – they won’t be able to pay benefits and retirement plans for their employees.  The squeeze of rapidly rising taxes in only going to push American families further into the hole. Meanwhile, the situation of California covering everything with more bond issues is nothing short of ridiculous.   Someone needs to wake up and realize that California bonds cannot possibly be AAA rated. The same also applies to US 30-year bonds. Anyone buying those bonds at today’s prices is simply playing in a fools market.   Pete, CA

DaltoniOctober 13th, 2007 at 10:39 am

Guest: “believe what i say, 50% of dumb Americans will still vote for republican and republican president.”  Americans are too dumb to analyze issues, and too dull to assess the character of people running for office. In that sense their votes are completely wasted. However, if they have an extra hour of sleep and an extra cup of coffee, they can muster just sufficient awareness to see that there’s no chicken in the pot. Then they will vote for change. Voting for change is pretty much all they’re capable of, and that’s the mood they seem to be in at present. 

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 11:15 am

wow,   BFI and commodities sure has impressive rally in this monetary expansion. dollars increase and dollar value decrease.  didn’t NR said that hard landing is comming and will drive down commodities rally? NR is completely wrong. his begging for more rate cut is deadly wrong too. it is now inflation that gonna destroy everyone not his hard landing.

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 12:09 pm

The biggest moral hazard on the way!! Taxpayers about to get reamed:   WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Major banks, including Citigroup Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co., are considering a plan to establish a $100 billion fund designed to shore up the shaky asset-backed commercial paper market, according to news reports Saturday.  http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/big-banks-treasury-talks-alleviate/story.aspx?guid=%7B25C497CF%2D79C8%2D4FF0%2D8DA0%2D39D90DA65796%7D 

The DaneOctober 13th, 2007 at 12:24 pm

“If this is not something to talk about, then I do not know what is worth talking about, i am advising everyone to dump US stocks and bonds until the US wakes up and starts to regulate those US banks, oh sorry they cant do that, it would not look pretty if allot of US banks whent broke would it? here are the articles to talk about:    http://www.larouchepac.com/news/2007/10/02/citigroup-kkr-create-enron-style-shell-company-conceal-billi.html    http://www.larouchepac.com/news/2007/10/05/banks-lend-vulture-funds-buy-their-own-junk.html    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/f421162a-7213-11dc-8960-0000779fd2ac.html    The Dane    PS.: sorry for my english.   Written by The Dane on 2007-10-07 10:23:32″

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 3:49 pm

Nouriel, how bad a sign is this?  New York Times– Several of the world’s biggest banks are in talks to put up about $75 billion in backup financing that could be used to buy risky mortgage securities and other assets, a move designed to ease pressure on a crucial part of the credit markets that still looms over the broader economy.   Citigroup, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase, along with several other financial institutions, have been meeting to come up with a plan to create a fund that could prevent a sharp sell-off in securities owned by bank-affiliated investment vehicles. The meetings, which began three weeks ago, have been orchestrated by senior officials at the Treasury Department, and the discussions have intensified in the last few days.     

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 10:52 pm

 From Doug Noland,  http://www.prudentbear.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4786&Itemid=55    While on the subject of less-than-exemplary central banking, this week’s improved Trade Deficit is deserving of a brief comment. It has been the Greenspan/Bernanke doctrine to view the weakening dollar as an integral facet of an expected long-term gradual adjustment in global imbalances – including our Current Account position.    Not surprisingly, the dollar barely budged from multi-decade lows despite some positive trade news. At this point, any marginal beneficial improvement in trade-related financial flows is inconsequential when compared to the massive scope of speculative finance these days seeking to profit from further dollar depreciation. The fact of the matter is that the “gradualist” approach completely failed to anticipate that multi-year dollar debasement would stoke powerful Inflationary Biases throughout “Un-dollar” asset classes (certainly including currencies, commodities, international real estate, global equity and debt securities, and art/collectables). And once Bubbles take hold…    The fateful flaw in U.S. central banking has been to focus on a depreciating dollar as the key mechanism for rectifying excesses and imbalances, while completely disregarding Credit and financial excesses. It was an easy – seemingly painless – expedient that had no chance of success. Instead, a declining dollar within the backdrop of Federal Reserve accommodation worked only to further bolster distortions and imbalances both at home and abroad. It can be viewed as the worst of all policy courses – virtually condoning a system of escalating Credit and speculative abuses, while ensuring a major additional element (our weak currency) supportive of global excesses.  

GuestOctober 13th, 2007 at 11:51 pm

Elaine Meinel Supkis practices Nobel laureate Doris Lessing’s dictum: think for yourself whether rightly or wrongly. I find she often has interesting macroeconomic observations from her unique vantage point.  “The Chinese just dumped $200 billion in sovereign funds into the system on top of the Arab rulers putting in another $300 billion SF! The SIVs mentioned at the top of this story will be saved by this flood of money but the price we pay is, we lose control of our economy, our money and our futures. The market won’t crash yet—the day this happens will be when China pulls the plug and trust me, the communist leadership fully plans to do this and expects to do this and often itches to do this.”  http://elainemeinelsupkis.typepad.com/money_matters/2007/10/elaine-meine-13.html 

FlyingmanOctober 14th, 2007 at 1:23 am

Dear doc, I think Andy Xie, the former chief economist of Asia for Morgan Stanley is an excellent candidate for an AsiaEconoMonitor. He predicted the burst of housing bubble in HK back in 1997. His opinion of recent economy development in China and other regions is pretty impressive too. Just my two cents – I have learned so much from your blog, so I’d be pleased if I can contribute a little too 🙂

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 2:08 am

“Nouriel, how bad a sign is this?    New York Times–  Several of the world’s biggest banks are in talks to put up about $75 billion in backup financing that could be used to buy risky mortgage securities and other assets, a move designed to ease pressure on a crucial part of the credit markets that still looms over the broader economy. ”  It is very bad as it is a direct devaluation of the value of labour or iow – we are to be screwed yet again so “they” may live to feast; however, I can’t see it working as any system that survives only on constant manipulation and propping-up support being run by so-called economist experts that really only act – or react, to the instructions of their political masters, must break-down a priori.  Just yet another failed static ideology of the myriad of crasse opines on the dynamic life system. Ho hum  PeterJB

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 7:20 am

remember NR is also “so-called economist experts”. he wanted rate cut as much as JumboJet Ben. He wanted bailout for bankers and Hedge Funds as much as JumboJet Ben. Yes indeed, there will be another rate cut in next FOMC, JumboJet Ben will and NR will welcome more cut for bankers and Hedge Funds. And NR will still beg for more rate cut.

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 7:58 am

  Why is that a bad sign at all? I think it will be embraced as a very good sign that the credit crunch being dealt with.

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:02 am

Guest, this is bad because the taxpayer is going to foot the bill for this “super fund” when it needs to be bailed out. These banks, off balance sheet, will absorb all this toxic paper and then go belly up. They can price this crap using tier III pricing for as long as they want to remain solvent, one all the toxic paper is owned by this fund, it goes bely up, ala Long Term capital management, and the govt bails it out meaning, me and you just bailed out all th epigmen bastards who have already profited from this mess in the first place. This is nothing more than the creationof a nother Enron, only instead of shareholders losing everything, we taxpers eat this bill. And remember, $100 bill, at a 10:1 leverage ratio means this fund could eat up to a trillion $’s of this crap and oh, look, how funny, itis estimated that there is still $987 bill of this paper still out ther. Funny how the numbers always tell the sory isn’t is. Any other personon the planet would be arrested for a shceme like this, not Paulson and the criminal element that now governs “we the people”…

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:05 am

Sorry for all my typo’s, I am just soooo pissed at what is going on in this administration and the overwhelming feeling of just having to eat it all. We need someone to start a press campaign and expose all of this and what it really means to the average American. They must be made to understand what is happening to this country and teh criminal element that now runs it.

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:26 am

$75 billion is probably printed by Ben’s print press to securitize “all this toxic paper”. watch dollar to fall further as Treasury and JumbJet Ben take steps to securitize “all toxic paper” Who is going to suffer? average Joe as inflation goes higher. if no one wants to own dollar, then appetite for all dollar denominated asset will be in jeopardy. time to move money out of USA.

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:30 am

trust me, Treasury and Mega JumboJet Ben will securitize all “toxic paper”. Huge huge mess. Dollar will plunge, and no one will want dollars or dollar denominated asset. So if you have dollar now, move it out of dollar deonominated asset or just spend it now. It is becomming worthless.

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:56 am

http://suddendebt.blogspot.com/2007/10/monkeys-nuts-and-cdos.html  Do you know how they catch monkeys in Asia? They make a box with a hole just big enough for the monkey’s hand to fit through, put a lychee nut in it and nail it to the ground. The monkey shows up, pokes his hand through the hole and grabs the nut. But he can’t get it out because his fist, holding the nut, is now too large to fit through the hole. The hunters come out of hiding with their nets, but the monkey does not flee – instead of letting go of the nut and running away, he just screetches in frustration as he tries to get his hand AND the nut out. In our business that’s what happens to traders who hang on to losing positions. They can see the boom coming down on their head, but they just refuse to let go of their positions.  The same thing is happening to mortgage-backed paper these days. Defaults are rising, ratings are cut, market values keep coming down, but banks and hedge funds are stubbornly hanging on to their nuts. Bernanke cut rates and they took the SIV’s onto their own balance sheets – and still there was trouble. The next ploy was to try and set up “separate” entities that would buy the paper from the banks at a slight discount, financed by the self-same banks. They call this an arm’s length transaction, but it’s their own arm inside the box holding on to the lychee for dear life. Now they are “negotiating” with the Treasury Dept. to find ways to revive the ABCP market.  Meanwhile, the market is clubbing away at their head. Week after week the amounts of ABCP outstanding are dropping and their yields are stuck high, while ABX indexes are melting away.

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 11:34 am

Looking at quotes from Doug Noland’s latest bulletin, we find the following statements from Mr. Poole at the Fed. See the link below:  http://www.prudentbear.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4786&Itemid=55  ——————– From Dr Poole:  “The depreciation of the dollar is something that is not explicable”  Question (Audience): “I was hoping you could elaborate a little bit on the implications of the weakness in the dollar right now …” Answer (Poole): “I don’t see any implications for inflation …”  “The Federal Reserve stopped publication of M3 a year or so ago… It was after extensive exploration of whether anybody actually used the measure. We didn’t use it internally and we decided that very few people actually used it”  I’m dumfounded.  It’s possible that Dr Poole is being evasive with his answers or thyat he is being badly misquoted (or quoted out of context). Otherwise, we need a new Fed !  Pete, CA

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 12:55 pm

“Any suggestions on names of folks who should be invited to contribute to this Asian blog?”  Stephen Roach from Morgan Stanley Asia

Lyle BurkheadOctober 14th, 2007 at 1:31 pm

Dave Chiang: “From phone records obtained under the freedom of information act, Helicopter Bernanke consulted with Citicorp’s Robert Rubin before slashing the discount rate last month by 0.5 percent.”  It takes longer that that to get anything through FOIA.  

BernardOctober 14th, 2007 at 2:07 pm

The whole point of this new SIV rescue package is to PREVENT price transparency on the securities that the SIVs own (in common with all the investment banks and hedge funds), in order to allow the investment banks and hedge funds to deceive the entire world about their possible insolvency. 

Lyle BurkheadOctober 14th, 2007 at 2:46 pm

@PeteCA  Let’s look at the whole quotation from William Poole:  “The depreciation of the dollar is something that is not explicable. And the way I like to phrase this – I like to put my academic hat back on. If you look at academic studies of forecasts of the exchange rates across the major currencies, you find that the forecasts are simply not worth a damn. Your best forecast of where the dollar is going to be a year from now is where it is now. There is no model that will beat that simple model. And people have dug into this over and over again. Obviously, you can make a ton of money if you were able to have accurate forecasts. No one has been able to come up with a forecasting methodology that will make you a lot of money. And you can’t make money under the forecast that the dollar is the same as it is right now a year from now. I can go a step beyond that though – and this is what I think is really interesting. The academic literature is also full of papers trying to explain exchange rate fluctuations after the fact – after you have all the data that you can put your hands on – data that you can’t accurately forecast, but data that after you get your hands on it might logically explain the fluctuations of currency values. And those models aren’t worth a damn either. We cannot explain the fluctuations of currencies after they have occurred even with all the data that we can dig out. And therefore, to me, it’s completely unsupported idle speculation not only to make the forecast but to talk about why the dollar has behaved as it has. I know the financial pages and the traders love to talk about that, but I would challenge any of them to construct a model that would stand up to a peer review journal in economics or finance. The models just aren’t that good.”  Pete, you may not be aware of it, but you too are using an implicit model of the economy to make your forecasts. Have you ever tried to make your model explicit? That’s what is done in graduate-level economics. It has been found, as Poole says, that none of the models are very good when you look at them under a microscope.  When I read his remarks, I was not dumfounded, I was bemused. When I read papers by real economists, as opposed to blog comments, I am struck by how complicated economics is. Even someone who has taken senior level (undergraduate) economics has hardly scratched the surface.   Poole says: “[I]t’s completely unsupported idle speculation not only to make the forecast but to talk about why the dollar has behaved as it has. I know the financial pages and the traders love to talk about that, but I would challenge any of them to construct a model that would stand up to a peer review journal in economics or finance.”  Would you like to take up his challenge?  

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 4:32 pm

“I know the financial pages and the traders love to talk about that, but I would challenge any of them to construct a model that would stand up to a peer review journal in economics or finance.” (William Poole)   Would you like to take up his challenge? ”  Written by Lyle Burkhead on 2007-10-14 14:46:17  I am neither a journalist or trader (but have studied journalism and have had a life that included some trading) BUT Yes, I will take this challenge – small matter indeed.  Given 2 years you will have a full and detailed explanation of just ‘exactly’ how the global financial, monetary and economic systems of today mal-function and as a bonus, I will include the full skeletal infrastructural details for a fully functional global economic system for the 21st. Century.  On top of all this, I will also include the physics of economics…  No problem… Let me know please.  PeterJB  

Lyle BurkheadOctober 14th, 2007 at 4:53 pm

I was addressing the other Pete, and I normally try to ignore posts like this, but this time I just can’t resist.  “Yes, I will take this challenge – small matter indeed… On top of all this, I will also include the physics of economics…”  The world waits with bated breath for this tome to appear. What name will appear on the title page? PeterJB or John Ryskamp? 

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 6:18 pm

people love to live in a lie. waking up from a dream or facing the truth is too painful. real inflation, declining dollar value, medicare and social security crisis are all too painful. please plug me back to matrix again 🙂

MikeOctober 14th, 2007 at 7:04 pm

Lyle said “Living in a lie is a lot more painful than facing the truth. ”  That may be true, but the sense I get with talking with coworkers is that they don’t want to know the bad news. I send them a few links and all I hear back is “my 401k is doing great!” And I think that’s the response for a lot of the average american.  Mike

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 7:35 pm

This is an attempt to bide time hoping that the underlying assets will recover. Like Bill Gross said the real problem is not in the asset-backed security, the real problem lies in those homes not worth the inflated prices ppl overstretched to buy. To borrow from TOP GUN -“Son, your ego is writing checks your body can’t cash”  

Dr SOctober 14th, 2007 at 7:56 pm

I am not sure whether it’s more interesting to observe the camp of so-called educated people whom believe that they can ‘think’ their way out of it, or the wealthy camp whom believe that they can ‘buy’ their way out.  Both groups completely miss the point, and what a waste of energy and resources. The answers lie right before them, available without the least effort exerted, completely free for the taking.

Lyle BurkheadOctober 14th, 2007 at 8:49 pm

“…or the wealthy camp whom believe that they can ‘buy’ their way out.”  To borrow from Gone With the Wind,   Scarlett: Money can’t buy everything.  Rhett: Usually it can, and when it can’t it can buy the most remarkable substitutes.”  As for what is more interesting to observe, frankly it is not that interesting to observe people who can’t even spell or use basic English grammar trying to act superior to people who are, in fact, educated. “the wealthy camp whom believe”, indeed. You mean the wealthy camp *who* believe.  

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:44 pm

Lyle  I’m certainly not qualified to develop explicit formulations of economic theory. However, unless I miss my guess, these theories are usually postulated or tested against very limited types of assumptions. It’s impossible to model all the complexities of the real markets. I don’t have any problem at all with academic inquiry. But I would be very troubled if the Fed is using these theories to make important policy decisions about the US economy.   Here’s the point, whatever the Fed decides – it ultimately will be interpreted by the trading and investment community. The Fed and academics may have doubts about the methods used by traders, but these simple-minded (or implicit) theories are going to be the ones that actually govern how assets are traded. So I would argue that the Fed should be very informed about how traders see things, and this should be figured into their rationale.  In other words, I think that the Fed should be made up of 50% bankers and 50% people from the trading and investment community. That might give a lot more balance to their decisions.  Assuming, of course, that we accpet that the Fed should exist. I’m open to the suggestion by Mike Shedlock and others that interest rates would be better determined by free market principles.  Pete, CA

Lyle BurkheadOctober 14th, 2007 at 10:58 pm

Pete-  I think I agree with some of what you say. It’s getting late, so let’s continue this on another thread. 

GuestOctober 14th, 2007 at 11:02 pm

…if they have an extra hour of sleep and an extra cup of coffee, they can muster just sufficient awareness to see that there’s no chicken in the pot. Then they will vote for change…  Probably not. They will go to church and ask God to put one there, and when He doesn’t they will think that is because they didn’t deserve it.

GenedioOctober 14th, 2007 at 11:49 pm

Pete, CA is basically right; the Federal Reserve’s main function is to protect the value of its fiat currency. Once it loses the propaganda war, it is all over. Poole is saying two things:  1. The devaluation of the dollar was not predictable. 2. The current dollar devaluation has not “bled” into actual inflation.  1. Many traders did make bets against the dollar over the past 5 years of easy money and wartime deficits. Many betted on PMs, other commodities, or foreign currencies. The majority bet on real estate. All these were short dollar plays, and were predictable, due to the easy money policies and, in some cases, tax advantages. Placing one’s money in CDs or even buying treasuries was for chumps.  2. While official inflation is still low (and falling, according to Poole), real world inflation is high and rising. Oil at $84, PMs tripling or more over the last 6 years, and the other things Noland mentions here. Wheat has doubled in the last year or so, and will affect food prices.  Poole’s arrogant tone doesn’t augur well for the Fed winning the propaganda war.

Lyle BurkheadOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:24 am

Daltoni  “Americans are too dumb to analyze issues, and too dull to assess the character of people running for office.”  Americans are dumb by what standard? Compared with whom? Are Americans dumb compared with the citizens of Burma, North Korea, Argentina, Italy, Iran, Ukraine, Zimbabwe…?   

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 3:37 am

@Lyle Burkhead,  Thank you for that post with Poole´s speech. And it tells me a lot …   First … I think the challenge to predict a collapse in the dollar is absolutely possible. Timing it is almost impossible! Let´s face it, I have been predicting a collapse in the dollar since about 6 years and it has been happening slowly but surely and it is now accelerating. What Poole is alluding to is the depreciation of the dollar to other major currencies (Euro). In terms of Gold it has been plummeting. If you bought Gold 6 years ago and just held it, you almost did best! There is one reason why you can determine the fact that the dollar will collapse. The FED has allowed banks to create more credit then the economy as whole grew fueling rising prices in all assets. This is what has been fueling Gold. The FED has been allowing the dollar banks to create more dollar credit then other currencies making the dollar less scarce then let´s say the Euro. This has led the seeds for a devaluation of the dollar to the Euro. That as such, does not imply that the dollar falls immediately because the difference to be made are the fundamentals and the perception of market participants.   As long as market participants BELIEVE everything is well then you have no problem. But what happens when people start questioning the FED and it´s Inflation figures and people start asking questions about too much credit. Well people start to panic and sell … This is why I said, we could have a deflationary dollar credit AND rising prices. This is where Bernanke and his boys say “Inflation expectations are not well anchored”.  Here an extract of a speech from Dr. Bernanke:  http://www.federalreserve.gov/newsevents/speech/bernanke20070710a.htm  “So, for example, if the public experiences a spell of inflation higher than their long-run expectation, but their long-run expectation of inflation changes little as a result, then inflation expectations are well anchored. If, on the other hand, the public reacts to a short period of higher-than-expected inflation by marking up their long-run expectation considerably, then expectations are poorly anchored.”  What Bernanke is saying is that if we all believe that inflation is just under control, then it will be, if not we´re screwed!  What makes me so sure that the dollar will collapse: DEFICITS everywhere … little capital real investments and malinvestments everywhere! Too much consumption and too little competitive industry.   Now how come things are accelerating now and not 2 years ago … well it is much simpler than people could imagine. One who forecasted a major disruption in the credit markets was Dr. Richebächer and he said with short term interest rates pushed up by rate hikes from the FED, financing short term debt became more expensive and ARMS interest rate costs went up some 500% and killed Subprime mortgage owners and that is where some of the malinvestments popped up all of a sudden. This was a big blurb on the “Sound Economy Radar”. Foreigners financing suddenly noticed that financing a consumption based economy isn´t sustainable and the credit will be destroyed. Until now the inflationary process of the FED and the Banks had no effect on CPI because foreigners were buying financial assets keeping the dollar up. Now that has died the dollar has to fall or they have to pay higher interest which can not be matched without a massive destruction of the economy.   Poole could not have forcasted the timing of the fall of the dollar, because god knows what pushes the Chinese, German or the Japanese to buy dollar denominated crap, which kept inflation (CPI) low. BUT he should have known that with credit growth going double digit that the dollar would collapse one day.   What makes me laugh a bit, is if you stop making economics a rocket science and keep everything simple, then you notice that Dr. Poole is expressing his view which plain and simply is: I ain´t got a clue what the dollar is worth and nobody has if you ask me, buddies …. but we determine it´s value.  Now you may say that Poole can´t determine what the dollar is valued against the Euro because he has no control on the Euro. But if he can´t determine the value of the Euro, who says the ECB can? Isn´t it weird that Central Bankers are not able to determine the value of the currency they are issuing? Isn´t it worrying? Don´t you believe owning something which´s quantity you know is limited is better … ?  Guess what: Deficits do matter! And everybody is waking up and noticing that this basic economical fact is true and now everybody is revaluing their investments. This is what is hidden between the sentence: “Risk is being reassessed” or “Risk is being repriced.”  What made me so sure that the last rate cut would be a disaster. China´s price stability is on the verge of creating massive riots in the country. It´s ability to absorb dollars has come to an end.  Here a fresh issue from bloomberg:  http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aWwJRrjOT47s&refer=home  “Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) — Asian currencies from the Indian rupee to the Chinese yuan are rising at a record pace as central banks turn to the foreign-exchange markets for help in fighting inflation.”   This plainly say´s import prices in the US are going to go sky high and import prices from other countries with goods China and India need are going to go much higher too … and with what? With the dollar reserves which result from DEFICITS! So with import prices go sky high, CPI is going to go UP! As I pointed out last week YOY PPI was up a staggering 13% and that is only the begging, because the reevaluation of the Yuan has not even started and this is where the real CPI killer will come from. When that happens, nobody with a half way functioning brain is going to buy a 30 year note at 4,9%. It will be more something like 15-20%!  And this is going to fuel the devaluation even more:  http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=afVWVDuyv0j0&refer=home   Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) — Sales of Treasuries may increase for the first time since 2004 as the U.S. federal budget deficit expands, jeopardizing the biggest bond rally in five years.  “Government auctions of bills, notes and bonds in the fiscal year that started this month may rise more than 50 percent to $220 billion, according to UBS Securities LLC, one of the 21 primary dealers that underwrite Treasury auctions. The first decline in corporate tax revenue since 2003 increased the shortfall by 12 percent to $162.8 billion for the year ended in September, from $144.8 billion in the 12 months through April. ”  These Bloomberg articles are big news!

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 5:45 am

“The world waits with bated breath for this tome to appear. What name will appear on the title page? PeterJB or John Ryskamp?”   Written by Lyle Burkhead on 2007-10-14 16:53:01  You are wrong in many of your statements particularly that quoted herein: The World at the grassroots awaits for security in their trust to be demonstrated – which will not be forthcoming.  The World of bureaucrats, academics and politicians await for their wealth to be increased without work and their egos to be expanded beyond their capacities and for all this, they could not care less about the physics of the nature (or science if you prefer – which is not a correct statement) of emergent economics.  Like you, they too prefer to wallow in empty post-postmortem of their own superstitions in the form of opines on that which cannot be answered – due to the fact, that all the horses are fixed in all the races by most of the players previously mentioned. Moral Hazard.  And, this is why I am not holding my breathe, despite the fact that the core physics of economics is clear and well defined for all to see. The problem is in the seeing which roots from the wanting to do do some looking.  As far as John Ryskamp is concerned, apart for him posting in upper case which I find quite vulgar and rude, I have the utmost respect for John’s fine grasp on that which is going on in the global Ponzi game controlled by the American morons who view themselves as ‘elite’. John has also demonstrated his social responsibility which unlike most, ignore such endeavors like the plague – as per Milton Friedman ideological ‘Ayn Rand’, Greenspanian, Wolfowitzian insanity.   They are, these aforesaid morons, merely ignoramuses with too much money, too much influence and too little intelligence while having no intellect at all – despite that which they self-proclaim. And, they have no interest in anything of the intellectual pursuits due to the grain and the persuasion of the sick paradigm in which they prefer to wallow.  Despite this, I am not John RyskAmp and Yes, I do understand the core physics of emergent economics and could easily design a system that would work for humanity as a whole – but not just a select few as the case is now and not by screwing the general public which trusts those same morons.  It this all clear now? So ignore me by all means; small matter.  PeterJB  

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 6:04 am

“Living in a lie is a lot more painful than facing the truth.”   Written by Lyle Burkhead on 2007-10-14 18:39:29  I would ask you to thing about this other statement of yours as herein quoted – as it it also a false statement and is perpetuated in “Plato’s Cave”.  The fact is that ‘Living a lie is far less painful than facing the truth’ – although there is a cost – as there is with everything.   Sorry, just couldn’t resist:-)>  PeterJB

BernardOctober 15th, 2007 at 8:23 am

Wall Street Super-SIV plan:  Whatever it takes to avoid disclosing what the bid is on our massive MBS/CDO/CDS holdings.  

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 8:44 am

OIL ABOVE $85/BARREL ——————–  By Santosh Menon  LONDON (Reuters) – Oil zoomed to an all-time high above $85 a barrel on Monday, propelled by robust demand from booming commodity markets and fresh geopolitical worries. —————  I remember a time about a 18 months ago when oil was peaking, and economists swore that if it went above $80/barrel then it would seriously impact the US economy. Now we’re at $85/barrel ! Chris Puplava has done a good job lately in pointing out why higher oil prices have not had as much impact as expected. But still, how much longer before these soaring energy costs drag the US economy to a standstill ?  Pete, CA  

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 8:44 am

Oil up 85 $ … Gold up 10 Bucks … at this rate 1000$/Oz. will be taken in no time … Yields are creeping up … BUT HEY WE HAVE NO INFLATION … LOL!  When will the markets wake up and understand that this is not sustainable!? We are hitting almost a buck a day on Oil and about 5 bucks an ounce on Gold per DAY!  Look at the currencies … the stock market is being held up by the yen … how long can this go!? Companies are complaining that prices are roaring! Yields are creeping up and the pricing power of companies is easing. That can only end badly!!! Jesus!

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 8:45 am

QUESTION: What does Big Business, the Jewish lobby, and al-Qaeda have in common?  ANSWER: They all threaten with “problems” (of one sort or another) if their interests are threatened.  

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 9:11 am

I am going to set up an income tax super conduit so I can avoaid the awful truth about my tax bill and not have to take responsibility and pay it…lets see how they like it!

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 9:44 am

Guest: “I am going to set up an income tax super conduit so I can avoaid the awful truth about my tax bill and not have to take responsibility and pay it…lets see how they like it! ”  That’s quite a brilliant idea. And I’ll add this one as well … ———————————————  PETE’S YEN CARRY CREDIT CARD  Now regular people around the world can get the same low interest rates as big banks and hedge funds. Just apply for “Pete’s Yen-Carry Credit Card” (PYCCC). You’ll get an amazing 1% interest rate – which only has to be paid back to the Japanese Government at some time in the future. Now YOU can stiff all those banks on Wall Street who have been shopping for low rates in Tokyo, and then charging you 15% for your card! What’s more, if you apply for a Pete’s Yen-Carry Credit Card today we’ll throw in two life size voodoo dolls of Hank Paulson and Ben Bernanke. Free of charge !!!  Pete, CA 

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 10:00 am

@Pete,  “What’s more, if you apply for a Pete’s Yen-Carry Credit Card today we’ll throw in two life size voodoo dolls of Hank Paulson and Ben Bernanke. Free of charge !!!”  I´ll take one, but only if the dolls are not toxic waste from China. 😉

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 10:05 am

Yen Carry Trade has decided to set the reverse gear … funny Trichet warned yesterday that the yen was not a one way street …

K inTXOctober 15th, 2007 at 10:15 am

“Pete’s Yen-Carry Credit Card”   I want one! Do the dolls come with long needles and conveniently marked Xs?

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 10:17 am

AFFG: “When that happens, nobody with a half way functioning brain is going to buy a 30 year note at 4,9%. It will be more something like 15-20%! ”  Quite frankly, I’m amazed that anyone is buying long-term bonds at the current prices today. The bond market must be being manipulated. No one with any rational sense could believe the current pricing scheme on 30-year bonds.  I’ll tell you one thing, AFFG. If commentators on this blog can see that the global economic system has some serious risks of blowing apart, then you’ve got to beleive that the “smart money” already knows it. They know it – they’ve got emergency measures already in place. If they ever see that the bottom is dropping out of this credit crisis, an awful lot of cash is going to disappear from the markets very fast. Very, very fast. The small guys won’t stand a chance of getting their money out.  Pete, CA 

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 10:24 am

Knifed right through 14K on the dow, be careful out there, today looks a little different than other sell-off days, looks like some big players are serious about locking in some profits here…

teohalOctober 15th, 2007 at 10:43 am

I also want one of those pyccc s…  brilliant Pete!  and then there was well-contained… what happened to him? to many well-contained s to write about…  a friend from turkey 🙂

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 12:09 pm

On October 12 naked capitalism was talking about another fraudulent way of keeping assets off balance sheets:  Some financial firms have sought in recent weeks to avoid write-downs by selling mortgage positions to hedge funds, with an agreement that allows the hedge fund to sell them back after a set period. A hedge-fund trader says his firm recently bought $1 billion of risky subprime mortgage loans from Bear Stearns with a one-year pact, known as a “mandatory auction call,” under which Bear agrees to participate in an auction for the loans that will provide the hedge fund with a minimum rate of return, according to a person familiar with the situation. “They didn’t want the mortgages on their books,” the hedge-fund manager says.  Such financial arrangements typically are considered proper if there’s an economic purpose to the trade and if risk is taken on by both parties. Legal problems could arise if such trades are part of an attempt to conceal a company’s financial picture, regulators say.  When it comes to Bear Stearns, there is absolutely no economic purpose to the trade. The only purpose was to conceal the current value of the asset. This makes it fraudulent. The SEC should investigate but it likely won’t.  

JMaOctober 15th, 2007 at 12:32 pm

I watched the movie Rogue Trader this weekend and I can not help but make the connection between the “88888” acount and the Master Liquidity Enhancement Conduit or the M-LEC. 2 quite disturbing differences 1) biggest players in the financial system apparently are playing the role of the rogue trader and 2) they are burying losses large enough to not only take down one Bank, but to shake the confidence in the entire financial system of the world ! 

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 12:47 pm

Wall street reconizes that the economic data out as of late just strong enough to stop the fed easings sooooooo, they are going to pressure the Fed by tanking stocks before the meeting. They already know Uncle Ben is their liquidity bitch…

Lyle BurkheadOctober 15th, 2007 at 12:52 pm

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=a95LN5wsCO_o&refer=exclusive  The big money starts to move in  Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) — Wilbur Ross, the billionaire who specializes in resurrecting failed companies, is betting the U.S. mortgage market will rise from the dead.  “We’re looking at everything that’s in trouble,” said Ross, founder of New York-based WL Ross & Co., in an interview…  Ross won’t predict how much longer tightened credit will pinch the mortgage industry. The time frame doesn’t matter, said Kirsch of American Residential Equities.  “He’s not building for today, he’s building on the future,” Kirsch said. “He’s banking on the fact it’s a cycle and he’ll be ready to roll when it comes around.”   —  When people buy stocks in mortage companies and builders, this is what they are counting on – the Wilbur Ross put, so to speak.  

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 12:53 pm

I think the whole world needs to send a signal to this corrupt administration that enough is enough. Wait until China and Europe set up a “super fund” to dispose of all the mortgage trash wall street has sold them…man, interest rates in the US are going to skyrocket…

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:00 pm

Master Liquidity Enhancement Conduit or M-LEC  I would call it ‘Rest In Peace Off Balance Sheet’ or ‘R.I.P. off BS’

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:01 pm

Looks like the dow is setting up for a 220 pt loss today…the last 38 minutes should be veeeerrrrrrryyyy interesting.

Lyle BurkheadOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:16 pm

Genedio, AFFG, and Pete, CA  RE: William Poole and economic models  After sleeping on it I think all of you have valid points. The key phrase in Poole’s remarks is “to construct a model that would stand up to a peer review journal in economics or finance”. The problem of course is that peer reviewed journals only accept articles from a certain school of thought. As Pete says, they restrict themselves to certain limited assumptions.  Poole says: “If you look at academic studies of forecasts of the exchange rates across the major currencies, you find that the forecasts are simply not worth a damn.” The academic studies he is talking about only look at statistical correlations, not causal relationships. That’s like saying you can’t predict tomorrow’s stock prices from today’s (which is true), *therefore* you can’t predict stock prices at all (which is false). Warren Buffett does predict stock prices, over a period of decades, but not by looking for statistical correlations.   It is possible to use Buffett’s methods in the currency markets, where the currency represents the “price” of its country. If you ask the same questions about countries that Buffett asks about companies, you can predict what the currencies are going to do, over the long term.   

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:29 pm

What this is, is very simple: Banks need to get this shit off there balance sheets before they report. So what do you do? You sell it to a fund at a virtually high price and book the profits/no losses and voila … your bank just looks fine. Latter on … when the auditors and the SEC are gone you buy it back and deal with it.   What they are banking on, is that when people see that banks aren´t hit, they will jump back and buy the crap from them.   I don´t think this will work and I don´t think they won much time.  I can´t believe it, interest rates going down, while Gold is scratching 760 and Oil heading for 86!

AlessandroOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:36 pm

 Wow, nice timing for such an article.  http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pidhttp://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=a8rFLg2L7xIQ&refer=home=20601087&sid=a8rFLg2L7xIQ&refer=home  Nation’s First Baby Boomer Applies for Social Security Benefits  By Brian Faler  Oct. 15 (Bloomberg) — The first Baby Boomer applied today for Social Security benefits, a milestone marking the approaching retirement of a generation of Americans whose eligibility for federal payouts threatens to overwhelm the federal budget.

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:38 pm

@Lyle Burkhead,  And that is the difference between an American and a European Economist. American base everything on statistical correlations and Europeans base everything on causal relationships. European Economists try to understand the mechanics and American try to find an answer by finding something like tea leaves in a cup or astronomical constellations.  Never the less … it´s the Americans who get the Nobel prizes … so it seems people find the American way more satisfactory. 😉

The DaneOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:38 pm

What do those who are bullish think about the way banks are “solving” their problems? Is this the right way? Is there nothing morally wrong?   Do you have an opinion, or does it not matter as long as stocks go up?  To AFFG, I think you are right, it will not work in the end. Those who have the money in the end to buy all that crap should have learned a lesson by now, and that is, stay away from all that “toxic waste”.  The Dane

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 1:56 pm

“I can´t believe it, interest rates going down, while Gold is scratching 760 and Oil heading for 86!”  tell me about it. this is crazy. so which chart is right?

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:08 pm

The US is now under control of the Financial Mafia. It consists of the Treasury Dept, The Federal Reserve, the top 5 banks in the U.S. and teh regulatory agencies. They do what they want to protect their profits and their good ‘ol boy’s club status , be damned anyone who doesn’t cooperate. Funny how one of the nations largest suppliers of meat is allowed to go under but banks and hedge funds…forget it!

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:11 pm

 Oil closes at $86.20 for Oct 15th. New Record high for Oil. Can Helicopter Bernanke continue to insist that “core inflation is not a problem”? 

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:11 pm

Boy, this is getting dangerous! The economic tipping point for oil is only $8 away now, at this pace, we will be there Friday!

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:42 pm

They took out the low for the day, sucked in some shorts and BAMMM! Her come da PPT to cause some short covering, just like clockwork!

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:49 pm

NEW YORK — Americans see a nation nervous about the economy these days, and majorities not only rate economic conditions negatively but also say they think things are getting worse. At the same time, most people say they feel confident about their personal financial future and about keeping their jobs.  The national telephone poll was conducted for FOX News by Opinion Dynamics Corp. among 900 registered voters from Oct. 9 to Oct. 10. The poll has a three-point error margin.  A 70 percent majority says they think most Americans are feeling nervous about the nation’s economy, while substantially fewer — 13 percent — think people are feeling confident.  

Lyle BurkheadOctober 15th, 2007 at 2:49 pm

@AFFG  “I can´t believe it, interest rates going down, while Gold is scratching 760 and Oil heading for 86!”  When events surprise you, then your model is wrong.   *Why* would you expect interest rates to be going up while gold and oil are going up? There is an implicit model here that needs to be made explicit. “European Economists try to understand the mechanics…” Well, what are the mechanics involved here? What are the causal relationships? Which quantities depend on which other quantities, and how? And what is the time frame for this dependence?   I have no idea what German economists are doing now. I would love to find out. 

JMaOctober 15th, 2007 at 3:06 pm

please quit wasting entries here with play by play on the market… if we see a down 500 print or dow back down to 12,500 maybe there is something to talk about. other than that, quit with the PPT closing here or there or falling knife blah blah blah who really cares until something real happens…

Lyle BurkheadOctober 15th, 2007 at 3:10 pm

By the way, Warren Buffett is American. So am I. As far as that goes, so is Lyndon LaRouche. We don’t all think in terms of statistical correlations. The US is the most complex and diverse country in the world, and it is not useful to generalize about “Americans” as if we were all alike. 

AFFGOctober 15th, 2007 at 3:10 pm

@Lyle Burkhead,  the mechanics explain the fundamentals not the market perception. Somebody is fleeing in bonds the rest in Commodites. Somebody is wrong … i am still working on the mechanics. 😉  Here is my point: Would you buy bonds at 4% if Oil runs up 1$ a day and Gold runs up an average of 5 bucks a day too. Would you buy dollar denominated assets in an environment where the fed is cutting rates, the dollar is falling and the PPi/CPI is running hot? Get my point? 😉

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 3:20 pm

 Wall Street utilizes creative accounting tricks with official approval from the highest level of the U.S. Treasury (ie. Paulson ), which makes them a bit different from, say, Enron’s accounting tricks. In particular, (1) they are implicitly legal, and (2) they are implicitly guaranteed to “work.”  

HubbsOctober 15th, 2007 at 3:34 pm

OK Gang. I just moved moocho moulah from some Vanguard Index and managed domestic large cap mutual funds over to money market accounts so I can get some (still not a lot but maybe more) sleep and not spend the rest of my life trying to figure out these markets and the Feds/Wall Streets behind the scenes wheeling/dealing. I guess the best I can do is try not to fall to far behind inflation if you belive the Feds definition. Now tell me the rest of the story–other downsides. I know MMs are not insured etc. I still feel investing in intl markets at this point is as risky–I subscribe to the coupling of intl markets- and think I have missed the boat on gold.   Hubbs

Jason BOctober 15th, 2007 at 5:36 pm

Hubbs –  Reas your prospectus. Many MM accts hold RMBS and CDO’s and other securities, which have been the source of the credit crunch. Their value may fall to 0 as they are marked to market.  

GuestOctober 15th, 2007 at 6:39 pm

“it is not useful to generalize about “Americans” as if we were all alike.”  So true. Generalizations of any group containing more than a few individuals is usually not useful. With Americans such a model would become a bit ridiculous. Or lead to surprises; as stated earlier, “when events surprise you, then your model is wrong.”  

adiemusoOctober 15th, 2007 at 8:08 pm

Hi All,  My two cents worth.  Recently my colleague asked me what do is meant by Market’s expectations. As usual I was both angry and shocked. Angry because isn’t it obvious it is just a figurative? You can’t have an exact/accurate/truthful/correct gauge of the Market and much less their expectations. Shocked because being a market participant you ought to have some personal expectations and common sense to be able to decipher between such things.  After reading Poole’s remark, I’m both angry and sad. If the market is impossible to gauge and predict, why are the taxpayers money wasted on a bunch of economists who can’t build a robust and decent model? If all we need are people to deal with the current and past historical issues, I guess we might see a lot of economists roaming the streets.  Sad, very sad indeed, that some abstract arguements are being put across when the person in office is put on trial. With super power comes great responsibilities. If you can’t take up that basic sense of responsibility, then don’t even start.  A great nation is going to ruins if we continue to have such people in the government.   “Well noone can predict the future, so why blame us when trouble stikes in the future, Im just like you trying to figure out what has had happened…”  Inflation is going to be a big problem. Unless US is able to withstand or isolate herself from the world, the soaring prices in the world is going to seep into a sagging economy.

AFFGOctober 16th, 2007 at 2:25 am

Gold is opening at london opening with 9 bucks up …. Silver is skyrocketing … Oil moving up to 87 … everything is going parabolic … German CPI came out at 2,4% which is very high. Germany was THE deflationary country in the Eurozone. Get ready for rate hikes in Europe if the M3 aggregates don´t come down too 4% soon.  Bernanke´s talk didn´t help much:  “The ultimate implications of financial developments for the cost and availability of credit, and thus for the broader economy, remain uncertain,” he said. “For now, the Federal Reserve will continue to watch the situation closely and will act as needed to support efficient market functioning and to foster sustainable economic growth and price stability.”

AFFGOctober 16th, 2007 at 2:38 am

@Lyle Burkhead,  my purpose was not to offend you and Americans and my thoughts are not to be seen in absolute terms, but in relative terms. Some of the best “mechanic” analyzers are actually American (Rothbard to name one.).   Most of the posters here are actually making “mechanic” analysis, including Nouriel.  I was talking about Main Stream Media and the FED. The very basic fact that the broad measure of Money Supply or monetary analysis such the one of Frank Shostak (American by the way) does barely find any supporters if at all.  We here in Germany, by the way have pleanty of Tea leaves in a cup readers too. Robert von Heusinger from the Welt just to name one. But these Germans barely find any attention at the ECB and most serious think tanks.   I hate generalizing, because I do not believe in stereotypes.

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