By David Stockman: The Fed’s bubble machine has fostered a noxious culture of plunder and entitlement on Wall Street. Now a marauding gang of vulture-speculators demands a multi-billion payday on the worthless Fannie and Freddie preferred stock they scooped up.
Entries in Federal Reserve (208)
“Paranormal liquidity stimulus” leads to “paranormal activity” to deliver that “parabolic overshoot” in asset prices. And there is no bubble in sight, not even in the Nasdaq Biotech index, which is up a cool 375%. Money is once again growing on trees.
Small investors are having fun in the stock market again, after years of sitting out the most phenomenal rally. They’re leveraging up their portfolios. Margin debt is spiking beautifully. Alas, spiking margin debt has a nasty habit of ending in a crash. In one painful chart.
By Dennis Miller: The Fed bailed out too-big-to-fail banks that made bad business decisions. It acknowledged its policies force seniors to put their life savings at risk. It blew a stock bubble that will eventually burst. And bankers are paid record bonuses. What gives?
How long before the dollar surrenders its status as world reserve currency and number-one payment currency to the Chinese yuan and to that other currency everyone loathes?
Teachers are a symbol of the middle class. In California, they earn on average $69,300 annually, fifth highest in the country. Not exactly a pittance. But it is a ludicrous pittance if they’re trying to buy a home.
First-time buyers, a powerful economic energy, create real demand and make the housing market grow. We’ve been praying for their arrival like we’ve been praying for rain in parched California. But the more we pray, the fewer there are.
OK, I get it. Life-threatening cold temperatures, polar vortices, and snow mayhem can put a damper on home construction, mortgage applications, first-time buyers, and home-builder confidence. But they also plunged on the West Coast where the weather was gorgeous.
By John Mauldin, Mauldin Economics: Fed chair Janet Yellen has her admirers and her detractors. One unabashed admirer is my good friend David Zervos, Jefferies' chief market strategist. He has taken to hollering, "Dammit Janet, I love you!" Now he's at it again.
Since the introduction of QE 3, honest-looking Fed chairman Bernanke told the Wall-Street media circus after each FOMC meeting that the money-printing binge in the coming month would expand the Fed’s balance sheet by $85 billion. A fact cited worldwide. And a big lie.
Last quarter was tough on large US corporations – those in the S&P 500 index. Unperturbed, the index soared all year. But its 343 companies that have reported so far have exposed the ugly underbelly of the worldwide economy: revenue “growth.”
The Fed uses the easing unemployment rate as proof that its heroic policies are successful and that Bernanke could ride off into the sunset with a nimbus above his head. Other official measures are less gung-ho. And the most important one has become the Fed’s nightmare.
The last stock-market bears have gone into hibernation, browbeaten and humiliated and ridiculed by years of brilliant rallies. Clinging to their analyses and the now silly notion that stocks should trade based on economic realities, they lost clients and money and their jobs.
Monday is Janet Yellen’s first day on the job as Chair of the Federal Reserve, and so, all wishful thinking aside, it’s crucial that we obtain, one way or the other, a clear picture of what her glorious tenure will look like.
It’s back, a new and improved contraption, a synthetic structured security that on its polished surface looks like that triple-A rated mortgage-backed toxic waste that helped blow up the banks and your 401(k) in 2008. But this time, it’s different. It’s even worse.
The Fed must have seen the relentlessly spiking margin debt. Leverage is a sign of investor confidence. The great accelerator. On the way up. And on the way down. Margin debt has a nasty, very consistent habit of peaking just when the stock market begins to crash.
Statistically speaking, the Fed’s heroic actions conquered the Great Recession years ago.The economy has been growing at a measurable clip, statistically speaking, with the unemployment rate inching lower over the years, though again, that’s just statistically speaking. But most Americans, struggling to make ends meet in the real economy far from the hoopla, hype, and buzz of Wall Street or Silicon Valley, have a more accurate answer.
‘Wealth Effect’: Spiffy Hotel Rooms For The 85 Richest Folks Who Own As Much As Poorest Half Of Humanity
Now that we learned that the 85 richest folks own as much as the poorest 3.5 billion, we want to know where they’re staying when they come to town for dinner. We already know where the poorest 3.5 billion are staying: in shacks, hovels, and moldy apartment blocks.
Prices for housing have jumped and rents have jumped too, yet the 38.7 million renters, 34% of all households, watched with dismay as their real wages declined. They’ve got a problem with the “wealth effect” that Bernanke held up as pretext for printing money.