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Tag Archives: News

Have Free-Market Economists Conquered the World?

[The Economists’ Hour: False Prophets, Free Markets, and the Fracture of Society. By Binyamin Appelbaum. Little, Brown, 2019. 439 pages.] Binyamin Appelbaum is unhappy. He is the main writer on economics for The New York Times, and he thinks that economics has taken a wrong turn. In the first half of the twentieth century, economics was appropriately progressive. The free market was considered to be good, but only if severely restricted. It had to be constrained by a rigid institutional...

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US Major Indexes Retest Critical Price Channel Resistance

News, again, drives the US stock market and major indexes higher as optimism of a US/China trade agreement floods the news wires.  As we’ve been suggesting, the global markets continue to be news-driven and are seeking any positive news related to easing trade tensions and capital markets.  We believe any US/China trade deal would be received as very positive news by the global capital markets – yet we understand the process of achieving the components of the “deal” would likely still be 6 to...

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The Mythology of the “Natural Interest Rate”

Myth : A huge and growing global savings surplus during the first two decades of this century has pressed down the natural rate (some say neutral rate) of interest. Actual very-low and sometimes negative market rates of interest reflect this. Reality : Estimates of the neutral rate according to central bank consensus definition have fallen, but these involve dubious “top-down” observations about economic aggregates and theoretical constructs based on an unsound money regime. Central bankers...

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The Nobel Prize in Economic Science Awarded to Silly, Politically Correct, Technocrats

By: Robert Wenzel The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has awarded the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2019 to Abhijit Banerjee (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and to his wife Esther Duflo (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and to Michael Kremer (Harvard University). From the Nobel committee: Despite recent dramatic improvements, one of humanity’s most urgent issues is the reduction of global poverty, in all its forms. More than 700...

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Daily Digest 10/14 – Finding Meaning in Quantitative Easing, Melting Ice Redraws the World Map

Economy Beware of Funny Financials (Adam) Companies can understate expenses. Many tech companies use non-GAAP accounting to strip out the cost of employee stock options, for instance, thereby showing higher earnings. WeWork sought to redefine traditional earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization as something called “community-based EBITDA.” The new measure conveniently excluded normal operating expenses such as marketing, general and administrative expenses, development...

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The Optimist’s Guide to Airlines, Crypto Mining and Gold

“Travel,” Mahatma Gandhi once said, “is the language of peace.” If that’s the case—and I happen to believe that it is—then I’m extremely bullish about the future, especially with respect to U.S.-China relations. This week I was in Lower Manhattan, and the number of Chinese tourists I observed visiting the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and Federal Hall National Memorial—the epicenter of American capitalism and birthplace of the U.S. government—was encouraging. Everyone wanted their picture...

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A Trade War “Tentative Agreement”!

A Pfennig For Your Thoughts Rocktober 14, 2019 * Currencies fight back to gain VS the dollar… * Gold takes a spin on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride… Good day… And a Marvelous Monday to you! Today is a holiday for a lot of the U.S. as we celebrate Columbus’s discovery of the West Indies… (SIC) So, this will be shorter than usual, since normally, I would be off work today! What an absolutely, fantabulous, weekend, weather wise here where I live! The sky was cloudless, blue umbrella skies, the sun was...

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Risk On Again

“Risk on,” big time! That’s what took place this week as you can quickly see from the rise in stocks and commodities, while safe haven assets, Treasuries, and gold declined significantly. And it’s all because of QE4. For propaganda reasons, the Fed is insisting QE4 is “NOT A QE” because to call the purchase of bonds QE is an admission by the Fed that it cannot normalize its balance sheet—as Chairman Bernanke once promised we could—without killing the economic patient. The Fed must not admit...

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Why “Worker Exploitation” Is a Myth

“In order to show that it is a half-truth, we must have recourse to long and dry dissertations.”— Frédéric Bastiat It’s still a very prevalent view that employers are somehow exploiting the people who work for them when they draw a profit from their business, despite the fact that a person’s employer is clearly doing more for their finances than all of the people who are not employing them. I might add, perhaps somewhat facetiously, including those keyboard-warriors who claiming that entering...

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Charles Hugh Smith: Will You Be Richer or Poorer?

Prolific and exceptionally perceptive author Charles Hugh Smith returns to discuss the insights in his just-launched book Will You Be Richer Or Poorer? Profit, Power & AI in a Traumatized World (the first chapter of which can be read for free here) The current narrative that our standard of living is not only the best it has been in human history, but thanks to modern technology, is now improving at an accelerating rate. Smith turns this belief on its head, pointing out the many and...

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