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Doug French

Douglas E. French is a Director of the Ludwig von Mises Institute of Canada. Additionally, he writes for Casey Research and is the author of three books; Early Speculative Bubbles and Increases in the Supply of Money, The Failure of Common Knowledge, and Walk Away: The Rise and Fall of the Home-Owenrship Myth. French is the former president of the Ludwig von Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama

Articles by Doug French

Toilet Paper Rolls Are Getting Smaller. Blame the Fed.

2 days ago

A term has been coined for product sellers who shrink their packages, and thus, the amount of product in those packages, keeping the package price the same: shrinkflation. Anyone with a bit of good sense or economics training knows this is another form of price inflation, caused by what used to be the dictionary meaning …

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Why Are Thieves Stealing So Many Catalytic Converters?

11 days ago

The local paper offered up this vague headline last week, “Car Part Thefts Up in Henderson in 2021, Police Say.” Most readers likely passed over the article. But, in the time it takes to read the piece, a half dozen catalytic converters can be stolen. “It actually takes an individual who’s committing these offenses about …

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Investors Are on the Lookout for a Crash. But Prices Keep Going Up.

17 days ago

An insider confided to a friend that all he is doing right now is transaction work for real estate holders who are selling now before the market crashes. His clients, members of Sin City’s illuminati, once bitten by the ‘08 crash, believe they’ll beat the crowd to the sales window before the local retail and …

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Mortgage Companies Cash in on Pandemic Relief

23 days ago

“Mortgage companies have ramped up their purchases of government-backed mortgages in forbearance, and they are selling these loans back to investors at a profit.” Original Article: “Mortgage Companies Cash in on Pandemic Relief” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. Narrated by Michael Stack.

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With Home Prices Soaring, Shoppers Fear Buying at the Top of a Bubble

26 days ago

The concerns about a bubble implies those shopping for a new home are wondering if they are walking into a trap. Home prices have soared and no one wants to buy at the top.  Original Article: “With Home Prices Soaring, Shoppers Fear Buying at the Top of a Bubble” This Audio Mises Wire is generously …

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With Home Prices Soaring, Shoppers Fear Buying at the Top of a Bubble

29 days ago

Google reported in April that the search question “When is the housing market going to crash?” had spiked 2,450 percent in the past month, according to Diana Olick of CNBC. “Why is the market so hot?” searches had doubled in just a week. Since 2008, everyone has been on bubble watch. The price of anything goes …

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Since When Is a Half-Point Rate Hike (2 Years from Now) “Hawkish”?

June 29, 2021

The Fed announced the reportedly hawkish news that the central bank may raise rates, not this year, not next year, but by fifty basis points sometime in 2023. This tapering would slow the Fed’s buying of $120 billion of debt securities a month with money created from the ether to some lesser amount.  People forget the …

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Transitory Inflation or Stagflation?

June 21, 2021

Bloomberg uses the price of a certain bike, the Santa Cruz Hightower C R, to make the case that price inflation is upon us. This bike will set you back $4,749, a 10 percent leap from the first of the year. By the way, I have three bikes for sale on OfferUp, each priced at …

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Mortgage Companies Cash in on Pandemic Relief

June 18, 2021

The nation’s billionaires are catching plenty of grief for profiting from the pandemic. All they are guilty of is providing services people wish to pay for. Nothing wrong with that. Then there are the mortgage companies. It turns out they are turning a good profit off Uncle Sam’s forced forbearance plan.  Ben Eisen writes for the …

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With Reverse Repos, The Fed Is Now Trying to Clean up Its Own Mess

June 12, 2021

This spring Scott Pelley of 60 Minutes asked Fed chair Jerome Powell, “And you believe the system, because of the oversight of the Fed, has the wherewithal to stand a significant shock to the markets?”  After pointing out that the markets survived a 25 percent drop in GDP and the loss of 30 million jobs …

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Why “Wild Swings” In Crypto Prices are Not Really a Problem

June 12, 2021

Price “stability” has never been a feature of a free marketplace.  Stability is an obsession of central banks, and the day may come when central bankers intervene to “stabilize” crypto prices. That will be a bad thing.  Original Article: “Why “Wild Swings” In Crypto Prices are Not Really a Problem” This Audio Mises Wire is …

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Price Discovery is Alive and Well in Crypto

June 7, 2021

“If the market continues to see wild swings based on Elon Musk tweets, it’s going to be a big setback for this asset class,” Matt Maley, chief market strategist for Miller Tabak + Co. told Bloomberg. “The fact that it sees such wild swings to the tweets from one person takes away the legitimacy of …

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Forget Hemlines. Mom Jeans Are Now an Economic Indicator.

June 3, 2021

Many have long speculated that there is a correlation between economic prosperity and the length of women’s hemlines. But perhaps it’s now “mom jeans,” with their high waists and ample fit, that indicate the true state of the economy. Original Article: “Forget Hemlines. Mom Jeans Are Now an Economic Indicator.” This Audio Mises Wire is …

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Inflation Is Great If You’re Already Rich

May 28, 2021

We’ve seen pictures of empty shelves in Venezuela. Meantime, the one-year return on the Caracas stock exchange is 1,804.92 percent. If you’re already rich in assets, inflation is a big nothing burger. But it’s a problem if you’re poor. Original Article: “Inflation Is Great If You’re Already Rich” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored …

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Forget Hemlines. Mom Jeans Are Now an Economic Indicator.

May 26, 2021

There was once something called the Hemline Index introduced by economist George Taylor in 1926. The idea was that the hemline of women’s skirts signed where the economy and/or the stock market were headed. Short skirts meant good times; a falling economy was signaled by longer hemlines.  Marjolein van Baardwijk and Philip Hans Franses explored what they refer …

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The Real Estate Boom in Vegas Is More Frenzied Than Ever

May 24, 2021

In Las Vegas, asset price inflation is combining with rising prices on building materials to create a real estate bubble of remarkable proportions.  Original Article: “The Real Estate Boom in Vegas Is More Frenzied Than Ever​​” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. Narrated by Michael Stack.  

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The Fed Embraces Its Inner Zimbabwean

May 13, 2021

With Jerome Powell and Janet Yellen focusing on using monetary policy to manage climate change, the M1 money supply has gone parabolic, from just over $4 trillion in February to $18.6 trillion in March. This is right out of Zimbabwe’s playbook. Original Article: “The Fed Embraces Its Inner Zimbabwean​” This Audio Mises Wire is generously …

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The Fed Embraces Its Inner Zimbabwean

May 6, 2021

May is on its way, and the old investment saw, “Sell in May and go away,” will be tested once again. Jared Blikre, writing for Yahoo Finance, provides the history behind what may or may not be good advice. “The full axiom was originally, ‘Sell in May and go away, and come on back on St. Leger’s Day,’” he …

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The Plan to Save the the Postal Service by Making It Even Worse

April 21, 2021

The post office can’t seem to balance its books. So like all monopolists, the postal service plans to “improve” things by increasing prices and making its service even worse.  Original Article: “The Plan to Save the the Postal Service by Making It Even Worse” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. Narrated …

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Is God a Capitalist?

April 17, 2021

Popes normally stick to their bailiwick, faith and worship. But Pope Francis’s criticisms of capitalism came early and often, escalating since the beginning of the covid pandemic. The pontiff describes free market thinking as “magic theories.”  “The fragility of world systems in the face of the pandemic has demonstrated that not everything can be resolved by market freedom,” …

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The Plan to Save the the Postal Service by Making It Even Worse

April 15, 2021

There is likely no more loathsome federal bureaucrat than the aptly named Louis DeJoy, who, despite supposedly being a successful businessman, has the surefire winner of a business plan to resurrect the United States Postal Service (USPS)—raise prices and slow service. Sounds perfect.  DeJoy (translated as ”lose happiness”) plans among other things to raise stamp and shipping …

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Big Debt Plus Rising Interest Rates = Big Danger

April 9, 2021

“Because there’s so much debt today relative to 10, 15 years ago, a small debt, a small move in yields, 50 basis points in yields today is equivalent to 2% 15 years ago.” Original Article: “Big Debt Plus Rising Interest Rates = Big Danger” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. Narrated …

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Can Las Vegas Recover from Covid?

April 5, 2021

In Las Vegas, airline passengers plummeted 64 percent during 2020, and the convention business has collapsed. For Vegas, there are troubling signs that the world is not in a hurry to spend freely on extravagant face-to-face meetings.  Original Article: “Can Las Vegas Recover from Covid?​” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. …

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Big Debt Plus Rising Interest Rates = Big Danger

April 3, 2021

If there is anything Wall Street banks crave is relief. Primarily relief from the potential for failure and, next, relief from holding much, if any, equity capital. These banks like their capital tiny and their profits huge. Losses should be socialized. After all, we want the ATMs to keep spitting out cash.  The SLR will be …

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Can Las Vegas Recover from Covid?

March 30, 2021

The Clark County Commissioners voted recently to rename McCarran Airport to Harry Reid International Airport. The vote was unanimous among those who rule the Las Vegas Strip. The public doesn’t understand why Las Vegas International Airport wouldn’t do if McCarran’s past is so perturbing. Not everyone is so wild about Harry. There was a time when …

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Commercial Real Estate: Too Much Debt, Not Enough Assets

March 13, 2021

It’s hard to crack the headlines of the financial pages, what with GameStop, bitcoin, Tesla, and squeezes of one sort or another. There is a squeeze in commercial real estate that won’t shock anyone, or shouldn’t. That squeeze is tenants unable to pay owners and owners unable to pay lenders.  It’s possible the pandemic will …

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The Dollar’s Reserve Currency Status Won’t Last Forever

February 3, 2021

Americans have benefited mightily by holding and trading with the world’s reserve currency, though most people haven’t given it a thought. No one remembers when the pound sterling held this distinction a hundred years ago.  Original Article: “The Dollar’s Reserve Currency Status Won’t Last Forever” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. …

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The Dollar’s Reserve Currency Status Won’t Last Forever

January 28, 2021

The Federal Reserve and the confederation of central banks which follow Chair Powell and his lieutenants at the Eccles Building have flooded the world with fiat script which is only limited by Keynesians’ and modern monetary theorists’ imaginations. In this flurry of metaphorical printing, one country, Russia, has loaded its central bank balance sheet not with …

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