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CURRENCY WARS: Misguided Economic Policy

 

The critical issues in America stem from minimally a blatantly ineffective public policy, but overridingly a failed and destructive Economic Policy. These policy errors are directly responsible for the opening salvos of the Currency War clouds now looming overhead.

 

Don’t be fooled for a minute. The issue of Yuan devaluation is a political distraction from the real issue – a failure of US policy leadership. In my opinion the US Fiscal and Monetary policies are misguided. They are wrong! I wrote a 66 page thesis paper entitled “Extend & Pretend” in the fall of 2009 detailing why the proposed Keynesian policy direction was flawed and why it would fail. I additionally authored a full series of articles from January through August in a broadly published series entitled “Extend & Pretend” detailing the predicted failures as they unfolded. Don’t let anyone tell you that what has happened was not fully predictable!

 

Now after the charade of Extend & Pretend has run out of momentum and more money printing is again required through Quantitative Easing (we predicted QE II was inevitable in March), the responsible US politicos have cleverly ignited the markets with QE II money printing euphoria in the run-up to the mid-term elections. Craftily they are taking political camouflage behind an “undervalued Yuan” as the culprit for US problems. Remember, patriotism is the last bastion of scoundre s  READ MOREE

   

 

PRESERVE & PROTECT: The Jaws of Death

 

The United States is facing both a structural and demand problem - it is not the cyclical recessionary business cycle or the fallout of a credit supply crisis which the Washington spin would have you believe.

 

It is my opinion that the Washington political machine is being forced to take this position, because it simply does not know what to do about the real dilemma associated with the implications of the massive structural debt and deficits facing the US.  This is a politically dangerous predicament because the reality is we are on the cusp of an imminent and significant collapse in the standard of living for most Americans.

 

The politicos’ proven tool of stimulus spending, which has been the silver bullet solution for decades to everything that has even hinted of being a problem, is clearly no longer working. Monetary and Fiscal policy are presently no match for the collapse of the Shadow Banking System. A $2.1 Trillion YTD drop in Shadow Banking Liabilities has become an insurmountable problem for the Federal Reserve without a further and dramatic increase in Quantitative Easing. The fallout from this action will be an intractable problem which we will face for the next five to eight years, resulting in the “Jaws of Death” for the American public.  READ MORE


READER ROADMAP -  2010 TIPPING POINTS aid to positioning COMMENTARY

 

 

 

POSTS:  FRIDAY 10-22-10

 

Last Update: 10/22/2010 06:33 AM

SCHEDULE: 1st Pass: 5:30AM EST, 2nd Pass: 8:00 AM, 3rd Pass 10:30 AM. Last Pass 5:30 PM

ARTICLE SOURCE 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
                       
Spain’s first town to (officially) suspend payments FT Alphav. X                  
France Grinds To Literal Halt As Authorities Impose Fuel Consumption Restrictions ZH X                  
Cameron's Risky Shock Therapy Spiegel X                  
Record borrowing casts doubt on Osborne's plan Independ. X                  
Canadian Household debt levels ‘excessive’ G&M X                  
BOJ hints at more monetary easing Ashai X                  
OECD Criticizes Finland Asia Sentinel X                  
New York Fed Faces `Inherent Conflict' in Mortgage Buybacks Bloomberg X               X  
Foreclosures spawn win for homeowners WSJ                 X  
Big Legal Clash on Foreclosure is Taking Shape NYT                 X  
Nine Stories The Press Is Underreporting -- Fraud, Fraud And More Fraud HP                 X  
                       
                       
ARTICLE SOURCE 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
                       
Tab for Fannie, Freddie could soar to $259B AP     X              
Google 2.4% Rate Shows How $60 Billion Lost to Tax Loopholes Bloomberg       X            
China's Economic Growth Cools as Inflation Accelerates Bloomberg             X      
China exporters brace for sharp yuan rise Reuters             X      
Yuan takes big fall in 2 months on rate rise Shanghai Daily             X      
Chinese home buyers heading overseas China Daily             X      
A bubble wrapped inside a mystery Wash Times             X      
Hyperinflation Is a Political Process Smith                 X  
                       
                       
CENTRAL BANKING & MONETARY POLICY                      
Fed's Bullard Says QE2 Decision Not To Come Until After Q3 GDP Announcement, Which "May Be Stronger Than Q2 GDP" ZH                    
What Bernanke isn’t saying is as important as what he is Rosenberg                    
The Fed's moving the markets into tough territory Crudele                    
Will the Federal Reserve Cause a Civil War? Time                    
Bernanke Beats Schumacher in Korea as Brains Finish First Bloomberg                    
Research US: Fed QE2 - not much more to gain Danske                    
Important things to know about QE2 Fabius Maximus                    
Arguments against QE2 Econbrowser                    
The Unintended Consequences of QE 2 Prag. Cap.                    
GENERAL INTEREST                      
Deflation Still The More Probable Outcome In The U.S. BCAR                    
iDepression 2.0 Jim Q                    
Fear & Loathing in the Divided States of America Peak Complexity                    

The Balance Sheet Recession Lives

Prag. Cap.                    
FLASH CRASH                      
LiveDeal Flash Smash Sends Stock Up 365%, Nukes Shorts ZH                    
MARKET WARNINGS                      
Stock market bull feels vindicated Brimelow                    

CURRENCY WARS

                     
John Taylor Parallels Current Situation To World War 2, Predicts Global Debt Structure Could Collapse | zero hedge ZH                    
Geithner's Goal: Rebalanced World Economy WSJ                    
Traders on alert as G20 finance ministers meet FT                    
G20 finance chiefs face currency struggle FT                    
As Dollar’s Value Falls, Currency Conflicts Rise NY Times                    
The Future of the Dollar Feldstein                    
What should replace Bretton Woods 2? Economist                    
U.S. Seeks G-20 Cooperation on Currencies, Pushes China on Yuan Bloomberg                    
Hedge Funds Short Plaza Accord Deal With China Pesek                    
Q3 EARNINGS                      
                       
MARKET & GOLD MANIPULATION                      
                       
VIDEO TO WATCH                      
Terrifying Ad Depicts A Chinese Professor Gloating About Owning America BI                    
                       

Complete Legend to the Right, Top Items below.
Articles with highlights, graphics and any pertinent analysis found below.

1

         

1-SOVEREIGN DEBT

2-EU BANKING CRISIS
3-BOND BUBBLE

4-STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT

5-CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE
6-BANKING CRISIS II
7-RISK REVERSAL

8-COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

9-RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE - PHASE II
10-EXPIRATION FINANCIAL CRISIS PROGRAM
11-PENSION CRISIS

12-CHRONIC UNEMPLOYMENT

13-GOVERNMENT BACKSTOP INSUR.
14-CORPORATE BANKRUPTCY

TODAY'S TIPPING POINTS UPDATE

RED ALERT

AMBER ALERT

ACTIVITY

MONITOR

Click to Enlarge





10-22-10

 

GEO-POLITICAL TENSIONS - ISRAEL / KOREA / IRAN

 

IRAN

ISREAL

KOREA

 

1- SOVEREIGN DEBT & CREDIT CRISIS

 

SOVEREIGNS

 

 

GREECE

 

SPAIN

 

Spain’s first town to (officially) suspend payments FT Alphaville

 

GERMANY

 

FRANCE

France Grinds To Literal Halt As Authorities Impose Fuel Consumption Restrictions  ZH

 
The strike that was supposed to be over two weeks ago refuses to go away. In the meantime, we get the following headline: "Local French Authorities say have imposed fuel consumption restrictions for the public in Normandy due to shortages." And yet Sarkozy promised that the country has more than enough fuel to last it through the strike. How could fearless leaders be possibly lying?

 

UK

 

Cameron's Risky Shock Therapy Spiegel

 

Record borrowing casts doubt on Osborne's plan Inde

 

CANADA

 

Canadian Household debt levels ‘excessive’ G&M

 

JAPAN

 

BOJ hints at more monetary easing Asahi

FINLAND

OECD Criticizes Finland Asia Sentinel

 

 

USA

 

 

 

 

 

 

2- EU BANKING CRISIS

   

 

3- BOND BUBBLE

 

 

4- STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT

 


5- CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE

 


6-BANKING CRISIS II



7- RISK REVERSAL

 

 

8- COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

 

 

9-RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE - PHASE II

 

New York Fed Faces `Inherent Conflict' in Mortgage Buybacks BL

 

Foreclosures spawn win for homeowners WSJ  Pazner

 

The big risk to banks and the housing market, is that more homeowners and lawyers come to see such cases as attractive to fight.

 

Big Legal Clash on Foreclosure is Taking Shape NYT

 

Nine Stories The Press Is Underreporting -- Fraud, Fraud And More Fraud HP

 

 

10- EXPIRATION FINANCIAL CRISIS PROGRAM

 

 

11- PENSION & ENTITLEMENTS CRISIS



12- CHRONIC UNEMPLOYMENT



13- GOVERNMENT BACKSTOP INSURANCE

 

Tab for Fannie, Freddie could soar to $259B AP

 

14- CORPORATE BANKRUPTCIES

 

Google 2.4% Rate Shows How $60 Billion Lost to Tax Loopholes BL

 

 

17- CHINA BUBBLE


China's Economic Growth Cools as Inflation Accelerates BL

China exporters brace for sharp yuan rise Reuters

Yuan takes big fall in 2 months on rate rise Shanghai Daily

Chinese home buyers heading overseas China Daily

A bubble wrapped inside a mystery WT

19- PUBLIC POLICY MISCUES

 

Hyperinflation Is a Political Process Smith



 


OTHER TIPPING POINT CATEGORIES NOT LISTED ABOVE

 

24-RETAIL SALES

 

 

26-GLOBAL OUTPUT GAP

 

 

31-FOOD PRICE PRESSURES

 

 

32-US STOCK MARKET VALUATIONS

 




BP - British Petroleum

SULTANS OF SWAP: BP Potentially More Devastating then Lehman!

------------

 






   

CENTRAL BANKING MONETARY POLICIES, ACTIONS & ACTIVITIES

------------

 

Fed's Bullard Says QE2 Decision Not To Come Until After Q3 GDP Announcement, Which "May Be Stronger Than Q2 GDP"  ZH
In addition to clarifying that the Fed's QE2 approach would likely be one starting in $100 MM increments, which has already been known, the question is where does it end, he makes the important observation that the decision on QE2 will not be made until the actual November 2 FOMC meeting, and certainly not before the Q3 GDP data is released on October 29, and makes the further comment (wink wink) that Q3 GDP may be a little stronger than Q2 GDP (uh oh). Oddly enough the Q3 GDP Of course, the chairman already knows what the bankers want, which is why we suggest everyone continue to frontrun each and every POMO in the fashion already described. The Fed has become the most predictable joke in the history of frontrunning and is nothing more than a "sell the news" type of criminal cartel.

What Bernanke isn’t saying is as important as what he is Rosenberg

In a speech last week, Mr. Bernanke hinted strongly that he would be open to approving a second round of so-called quantitative easing at the Fed’s next meeting on Nov. 2. But in the course of his 4,000-word speech, he made no mention of the inevitable impact of quantitative easing on the U.S. dollar. It’s that impact that should be guiding investors’ decisions.

The challenge for the Fed is that the post-bubble U.S. economy is caught in a classic liquidity trap, in which short-term interest rates can go no lower because they’re already bumping up against zero. At the same time, additional fiscal stimulus is no longer a viable political option when deficits are already running at record levels. That leaves unorthodox monetary stimulus by the Fed as the only game in town. Mr. Bernanke knows there is a chance that another round of QE will be met with only limited success, but he has few other options.

One thing that does seem certain is that the Fed's actions will have global consequences, as the money the central bank prints to buy bonds will inevitably trigger more depreciation of the dollar against other currencies. But in his speech last week, Mr. Bernanke made no mention at all of the slip-sliding U.S. dollar.

Don’t be fooled. Part of this new round of QE will involve a depreciating greenback – a trend already under way. This is where Mr. Bernanke’s silence is golden.

The Fed, to be sure, doesn’t want to create consumer inflation with a new round of QE. Instead, by driving down interest rates, it wants to drive up the relative value of assets such as stocks and housing.


The Fed's moving the markets into tough territory Crudele
Is rigging the stock market a good or bad thing? The answer: both.

Will the Federal Reserve Cause a Civil War? TIME

Bernanke Beats Schumacher in Korea as Brains Finish First BL

Research US: Fed QE2 - not much more to gain Danske

Important things to know about QE2 Fabius Maximus

Arguments against QE2 Econbrowser

The Unintended Consequences of QE 2  Prag Capitalist

It looks like the Fed is already beginning to worry about the unintended consequences of QE2.  In a speech earlier this week Richard Fisher discussed an important consequence of QE.  He said:

““In my darkest moments, I have begun to wonder if the monetary accommodation we have already engineered might even be working in the wrong places.”

It certainly is working in the wrong places.  While the Fed creates paper profits in stocks and bonds QE appears to also be influencing the price of commodities.  Commodity prices have surged in recent weeks as the Fed has driven the dollar lower.  What’s so pernicious here is the margin compression that Gaius discussed the other day.  This is crucial because the margin recovery has been the single most important component of the equity market recovery.

 

What’s so interesting here is that Ben Bernanke might actually be creating a double headwind for the economy in the coming quarters.  Not only is he reducing margins for many corporationsa, but because quantitative easing is inherently deflationary (because it replaces interest bearing assets with non-interest bearing assets) it is not helping aggregate demand. From the perspective of a corporation this means stagnant revenues and higher input costs.  That will only increase the reluctance to hire.

Of course, the Fed thinks they can prop up particular markets and generate a “wealth effect” that is unsupported by the underlying fundamentals.  Interestingly, in the long-run, Mr. Bernanke might be creating more damage than he even understands.  But at least someone at the Fed is beginning to wonder if this strategy is viable.


 

 GENERAL INTEREST

Deflation Still The More Probable Outcome In The U.S. BCAR

 
With oil prices firming and breakeven rates moving higher, it makes sense to ask if U.S. inflation protection is beginning to be warranted. The answer is a definitive no, according to our U.S. Investment Strategy service. A review of the main CPI components reveals that core CPI continues to head down the path that has been discussed in previous Insights. Shelter is the largest component of core CPI, accounting for 40% of the index. Shelter inflation has been in freefall during the past several years due to the burst housing bubble and consequent downward pressure on rental prices. The huge overhang of both rental and owned (but for-sale) properties suggests that shelter CPI will continue to fall. The non-shelter component of services inflation accounts for about 30% of core CPI. This is the area of inflation that is tightly linked to monetary policy since import penetration is low and most service items in the index are derived from market prices. As it stands, there is currently far too much domestic economic slack: Pricing pressures are on the downside. Core goods prices account for the remainder of the basket (30%). Contrary to the typical downward trend that usually occurs during recession, the core goods index has actually risen over the past year. However, much of the rise is due to a surge in new and used car prices, rather than a widespread firming in pricing power. Stripping out the vehicle component (about 5% of the index) reveals that core goods prices are now contracting. The overall picture is one of very weak pricing power and a period of outright deflation in 2011 should not be ruled out. 

 

 

iDepression 2.0 JimQ

 

Fear & Loathing in the Divided States of America  Peak Complexity

 

The Balance Sheet Recession Lives  Prag Capitalist

 

 

 

FLASH CRASH - HFT - DARK POOLS

  

LiveDeal Flash Smash Sends Stock Up 365%, Nukes Shorts  ZH

 
Today's flash smash comes courtesy of microcap company LiveDeal (Nasdaq: LIVE, market cap around $3 MM) where thanks to a rogue (presumably - there are no news in the name) algorithm the stock shoots up from an opening price of $4.79 all that way to $22.25 in about one minute: a gain of 365%, which is too rich even for KKR's new prop group. And no, this is not a fat finger as the QR screen below shows: the algo was busted enough to lift every single offer in a row - there were virtually no downticks for the span of over 15 seconds. The result: 1,679 shorts end up with an almost 400% loss (one of the benefits of unlimited downside shorting). And as the stock has very little liquidity it is very likely that assorted brokers took matters into their own hands and force covered all those who were underwater and losing substantially. And the cherry on top: not a single trade has been busted. In other words, exchanges are more than happy to unwind trades immediately when an algo loses money, but when an algo creates thousands of forced buy ins and retail investors are left with huge losses, then no luck on the DK. What is scariest is that HFT has now gone microcap: with Apple, Amazon, BofA and Netflix bled dry, it is about time the robotic scalping crew found new pastures.

 

MARKET WARNINGS

 

Stock market bull feels vindicated Brimelow

 

CURRENCY WARS

 

John Taylor Parallels Current Situation To World War 2, Predicts Global Debt Structure Could Collapse | zero hedge  ZH

 

A war has just begun. Didn’t Bernanke and the Fed announce in late August at Jackson Hole (and multiple times since then) that the US was going to enter QE2 and debase its currency setting off a currency war. Bernanke, like Hitler seven decades ago, had been warning everyone who would listen for years.

On November 21, 2002 he said that he would debase the US dollar if the American economy looked as though it would go through the same lost decades that the Japanese have recently endured. Now, it is clear that he has been true to his word and the currency war has begun. Although it took Guido Mantega the Finance Minister of Brazil to state the obvious saying that “an international currency war” had broken out, the reaction at the recent IMF meetings and among analysts of all stripes make it clear that this situation is well comprehended by everyone who is paying attention. The US has thrown a rock through the world’s plate glass window. This country will be severely disrupting the current global monetary system because the Federal Reserve – and not necessarily the Obama administration – believes that the status quo is not in the interest of the American people.

 

Right now the world is in the ‘phoney war’ period as the US has only just begun the process of flooding the world with excess dollars. The recent IMF meetings had and the coming G-20 meeting will see lots of venting and some skirmishes but no real attacks. Countries are complaining loudly because Bernanke’s excess dollars are being sold and their own currencies are being purchased, rising as the dollar declines. As most are trying to slow that rise by buying the dollars as reserves, reserves are climbing, their money supplies are ballooning, and inflation will surely follow. With inflation and strong currencies, these countries will see their trade positions destroyed. The real war will begin as countries place restrictions on capital flows. Mantega seems as though he will make a good economic general as Brazil is one of the first to move, taxing bond inflows. Interestingly the Brazilian leaders will miss the G-20 meeting in Seoul, avoiding any direct discussion of their actions.

Capital controls are likely to spring up in Asia and in other attractive economies during the next few months, but the really destructive war begins when tariffs appear. This should happen next year – maybe in May, mirroring 1940 – because by then the next recession should be in full force in both the US and in Europe, forcing many millions more out of work. The political pressure for raising tariffs in the US is intensifying and the new Tea Party supported Congressman will help tip the political scales in that direction.

 

This war will not be fought for territory, but for markets and wealth, and when tariff walls are raised the destruction of livelihoods and property will be almost as dramatic as in the old fashioned shooting wars. With the loss of economic value, the global debt structure must collapse and entitlement promises will not survive.


Geithner's Goal: Rebalanced World Economy WSJ
“We would like countries to move toward a set of norms on exchange rate policy...the major currencies, which are roughly in alignment now"

 

Traders on alert as G20 finance ministers meet  FT

Geithner urges countries not to devalue currencies

 

G20 finance chiefs face currency struggle  FT

 

As Dollar’s Value Falls, Currency Conflicts Rise NYT

 

The Future of the Dollar Feldstein 

 

What should replace Bretton Woods 2? Economist

 

U.S. Seeks G-20 Cooperation on Currencies, Pushes China on Yuan BL

 

Hedge Funds Short Plaza Accord Deal With China Pesek

 

Q3 EARNINGS

 

 

MARKET & GOLD MANIPULATION

 

 

AUDIO / VIDEO

 

Terrifying Ad Depicts A Chinese Professor Gloating About Owning America  BI

 

 

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

 

"The global financial system continues to be unsound in the same way that a Ponzi scheme is unsound: there are not enough cash flows to ultimately service the face value of all the existing obligations over time. A Ponzi scheme may very well be liquid, as long as few people ask for their money back at any given time. But solvency is a different matter - relating to the ability of the assets to satisfy the liabilities."

John Hussman
No Margin of Safety, No Room for Error


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Gordon T Long is not a registered advisor and does not give investment advice. His comments are an expression of opinion only and should not be construed in any manner whatsoever as recommendations to buy or sell a stock, option, future, bond, commodity or any other financial instrument at any time. While he believes his statements to be true, they always depend on the reliability of his own credible sources. Of course, he recommends that you consult with a qualified investment advisor, one licensed by appropriate regulatory agencies in your legal jurisdiction, before making any investment decisions, and barring that, we encourage you confirm the facts on your own before making important investment commitments.ont>

 

© Copyright 2010 Gordon T Long. The information herein was obtained from sources which Mr. Long believes reliable, but he does not guarantee its accuracy. None of the information, advertisements, website links, or any opinions expressed constitutes a solicitation of the purchase or sale of any securities or commodities. Please note that Mr. Long may already have invested or may from time to time invest in securities that are recommended or otherwise covered on this website. Mr. Long does not intend to disclose the extent of any current holdings or future transactions with respect to any particular security. You should consider this possibility before investing in any security based upon statements and information contained in any report, post, comment or recommendation you receive from him.

 

         

TODAY'S NEWS

FRIDAY

10-22-10

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TIPPING POINTS

1-SOVEREIGN DEBT & CREDIT CRISIS

2-EU BANKING CRISIS
3-BOND BUBBLE

4-STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT

5-CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE
6-BANKING CRISIS II
7-RISK REVERSAL

8-COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

9-RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE - PHASE II
10-EXPIRATION FINANCIAL CRISIS PROGRAM
11-PENSION CRISIS

12-CHRONIC UNEMPLOYMENT

13-GOVERNMENT BACKSTOP INSUR.
14-CORPORATE BANKRUPTCY
 

15-CREDIT CONTRACTION II

16-US FISCAL IMBALANCES
17-CHINA BUBBLE
18-INTEREST PAYMENTS
19-US PUBLIC POLICY MISCUES
20-JAPAN DEBT DEFLATION SPIRAL
21-US RESERVE CURRENCY.
22-SHRINKING REVENUE GROWTH RATE
23-FINANCE & INSURANCE WRITE-DOWNS
24-RETAIL SALES
25-US DOLLAR WEAKNESS
26-GLOBAL OUTPUT GAP
27-CONFIDENCE - SOCIAL UNREST
28-ENTITLEMENT CRISIS
29-IRAN NUCLEAR THREAT
30-OIL PRICE PRESSURES
31-FOOD PRICE PRESSURES
32-US STOCK MARKET VALUATIONS
33-PANDEMIC
34-S$ RESERVE CURRENCY
35-TERRORIST EVENT
36-NATURAL DISASTER

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Review- Five Thumbs Up for Steve Greenhut's Plunder!  Mish

 

 

   

 

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