Posts Tagged ‘monetary base’

US Commercial Banks: the Turkeys Are Stuffed

US Commercial Banks: the Turkeys Are Stuffed

Courtesy of Jesse’s Café Américain

The increase in the monetary base created by the Fed’s monetization of debt is striking, not seen since the early stages of the Great Depression.

[click on charts for larger views]

Banks are not lending despite the massive quantitative easing. They are fat with reserves, paying huge bonuses again, and obviously doing something with their money other than providing funds for the commercial activity of the nation.

Excess Reserves are an accounting function. The banks themselves do not reduce their reserves significantly through lending in the aggregate, but seek to minimize the opportunity cost of reserves. But it is symptomatic in the sense that the lack of reserves is most definitely NOT an issue with lending.

No one can deny with any credibility that if the Federal Reserve reduced their payment on reserves to zero, or even a negative, that lending activity would not increase. And yet they do not. Why?

Because the first priority of the Fed is the health of the banking system itself, and not the national economy and the availability of credit to non-banking institutions. They are seeking to drive commercial entities out of secure savings to risk investment again, but providing a safe harbor for the banks while they are doing it, while attempting to maintain the appearance of financial system solvency.

The critical, unspoken factor is that the US banking system is not yet healthy, is not sound, is not well capitalized despite the record expansion in the monetary base and its specific direction to the banks themselves. They have simply not taken the writedown necessary to make themselves financially sound, because they do not wish to take the hit to earnings, salaries, stock options and bonuses.

Ben Bernanke’s gambit is as much financial fraud as it is a monetarist exerperiment in cynicism with regard to the management of a nation’s money.

 


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The Speculative Bubble in Equities and the Case for Deflation, Stagflation and Implosion

The Speculative Bubble in Equities and the Case for Deflation, Stagflation and Implosion

Courtesy of Jesse’s Café Américain

As part of their program of ‘quantitative easing’ which is another name for currency devaluation through extraordinary expansion of the monetary base, the Fed has very obviously created an inflationary bubble in the US equity market.


 

Why has this happened? Because with a monetary expansion intended to help cure an credit bubble crisis that is not accompanied by significant financial market reform, systemic rebalancing, and government programs to cure and correct past abuses of the productive economy through financial engineering, the hot money given by the Fed and Treasury to the banking system will NOT flow into the real economy, but instead will seek high beta returns in financial assets.

Why lend to the real economy when one can achieve guaranteed returns from the Fed, and much greater returns in the speculative markets if one has the right ‘connections?’


 

The monetary stimulus of the Fed and the Treasury to help the economy is similar to relief aid sent to a suffering Third World country. It is intercepted and seized by a despotic regime and allocated to its local warlords, with very little going to help the people.

Deflation

By far this presents the most compelling case for a deflationary episode. As the money that is created flows into financial assets, it is ‘taxed’ by Wall Street which takes a disproportionately large share in the form of fees and bonuses, and what are likely to be extra-legal trading profits.

If the monetary stimulus is subsequently dissipated as the asset bubble collapses, except that which remains in the hands of the few, it leaves the real economy in a relatively poorer condition to produce real savings and wealth than it had been before. This is because the outsized financial sector continues to sap the vitality from the productive economy, to drag it down, to drain it of needed attention and policy focus.

At the heart of it, quantitative easing that is not part of an overall program to reform, regulate, and renew the system to change and correct the elements that caused the crisis in the first place, is nothing more than a Ponzi scheme. The optimal time to reform the system was with the collapse of…
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Mish “Hard Money” Goes Off The Rails

Here’s another installment in the debate between our friends Mish (Global Economic Trend Analysis) and Karl (The Market Ticker).  Confession – as a big fan of both Mish and Karl, each makes good arguments, I’m currently undecided.  What do you think?  Don’t forget, we have a comment section.  :-)   Ilene

Mish "Hard Money" Goes Off The Rails

Courtesy of Karl Denninger at The Market Ticker


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Money Markets are the New Suspenders

Money Markets are the New Suspenders

By EB, courtesy of Zero Hedge

The Financial Times recently reported on the Fed’s latest exit strategy to eventually contain the inflation zombie:

 During the crisis, the Fed created roughly $800bn of additional bank reserves to finance asset purchases and loans. This total is likely to rise in the coming months as the central bank completes its asset purchases and the Treasury unwinds financing it provided to the Fed. Fed officials think they could raise interest rates even with this excess supply of reserves by offering to pay banks to deposit their surplus funds with it rather than lend them out. However, they also want to use reverse repos in tandem to soak up some of the excess reserves. Policymakers call this a “belt and braces approach”. [The latter, clearly a nod to the great Gekko.]

nice suspenders, zero hedgeTD touched on this last Thursday, and we will expand upon it here as it is particularly relevant to our ongoing theory that it is the proceeds from permanent open market operations (POMOs) and their close cousins that are driving equities.  Though this may be received wisdom to ZH readers, the Fed has done us the favor of providing additional evidence through the FT story.  A bit of background, as we are new contributors to this forum:

Money Supply:  Based on our previous research on the effects of swings in M2 non-seasonally adjusted money supply (M2) on the stock market, we were a bit surprised in July 09 by the resiliency of the rally, which continued in the face of such a dramatic contraction in M2.  The dismal Durable Goods report from last Friday confirms that the capital goods sector is still under significant pressure as a result of a lack of money in the general economy.  With banks not lending to normal businesses and consumer credit contracting equally as violently, what is the basis for this rally and from where does the never-ending flow of equities juice flow? 

Bank Non-Borrowed Excess Reserves:  The Fed statistic that most closely correlates with the 2009 equities run-up appears to be bank non-borrowed excess reserves (bank NBER), which


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Dow Jones vs. the Monetary Base Chart

Dow Jones vs. the Monetary Base Chart

Courtesy of Andy Kessler

This chart ran along with The Bernanke Market piece that ran in the Wall Street Journal back in July. I thought it was worth updating. The market seems to be following the Fed’s money creation. I suspect the market will give out well before the Fed stops printing money.

The monetary base data is from this page at the St. Louis Fed. WSBASE is defined as the "Sum of currency in circulation, reserve balances with Federal Reserve Banks, and service-related adjustments to compensate for float."

DJIA vs WSBASE Sept 25 2009 YTD


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Dow Jones vs. the Monetary Base Chart

Dow Jones vs. the Monetary Base Chart

Courtesy of Andy Kessler

This chart ran along with The Bernanke Market piece that ran in the Wall Street Journal back in July. I thought it was worth updating. The market seems to be following the Fed’s money creation. I suspect the market will give out well before the Fed stops printing money.

The monetary base data is from this page at the St. Louis Fed. WSBASE is defined as the "Sum of currency in circulation, reserve balances with Federal Reserve Banks, and service-related adjustments to compensate for float."

DJIA vs WSBASE Sept 25 2009 YTD

 


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WSJ: The Bernanke Market

Andy Kessler may have the answer to why the market keeps going up, even in the face of enduring economic pain (if you look beyond the ever rising indexes). 

WSJ: The Bernanke Market

Courtesy of Andy Kessler

Wsj_logo 
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124762005061042587.html

I remember once buying the stock of a small company and I couldn’t believe my luck. Every time my fund bought more shares the stock would go up. So we bought even more and the stock kept climbing. When we finally built our full position and stopped buying the stock started dropping, ending up at a price below where we started buying it. We were the market.

Just about every policy move to right the U.S. economy after the subprime sinking of the banking system has been a bust. We saved Bear Stearns. We let Lehman Brothers go. We forced Merrill Lynch, Wachovia and Washington Mutual into the hands of others. We took control of Fannie and Freddie and AIG and even own a few car companies, pumping them with high-test transfusions. None of this really helped.

[Commentary] the dow tracks the money supply

We have a zero interest-rate policy. We guaranteed bank debt. We set up the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) to buy toxic mortgage assets off bank balance sheets. But when banks refused to sell at fire sale prices, we just gave them the money instead. Dumb move. So we set up the Public-Private Investment Program to get private investors to buy these same toxic assets with government leverage, and still there are few sellers. Meanwhile, the $1 trillion federal deficit is crowding out private investment and the porky $787 billion stimulus hasn’t translated into growth.

At the end of the day, only one thing has worked — flooding the market with dollars. By buying U.S. Treasuries and mortgages to increase the monetary base by $1 trillion, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke didn’t put money directly into the stock market but he didn’t have to. With nowhere else to go, except maybe commodities, inflows into the stock market have been on a tear. Stock and bond funds saw net inflows of close to $150 billion since January. The dollars he cranked out didn’t go into the hard economy, but instead into tradable assets. In other words, Ben Bernanke has been the market.

The good news is that Mr. Bernanke got the major banks, except for Citigroup,


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Phil's Favorites

Rabobank: "A Dangerous Moment"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

By Michael Every of Rabobank

The markets have started a new week of trading in risk off mode (when this note was heading to press) amid fading expectations that the US Congress will pass another fiscal package. With just 8 days left until the presidential election, both sides may not have a sufficient incentive to reach an agreement. Even if there is no deal in the coming days, a fiscal stimulus is still likely to be agreed after the election to support businesses and households as the US is struggling to contain the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, President Trump’s chief of staff openly admitted that the US is “not going to control” the pandemic and instead will focus on “proper mitigation factors”, such as vaccines and treatments. Former Vice President Biden s...



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Zero Hedge

Rabobank: "A Dangerous Moment"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

By Michael Every of Rabobank

The markets have started a new week of trading in risk off mode (when this note was heading to press) amid fading expectations that the US Congress will pass another fiscal package. With just 8 days left until the presidential election, both sides may not have a sufficient incentive to reach an agreement. Even if there is no deal in the coming days, a fiscal stimulus is still likely to be agreed after the election to support businesses and households as the US is struggling to contain the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, President Trump’s chief of staff openly admitted that the US is “not going to control” the pandemic and instead will focus on “proper mitigation factors”, such as vaccines and treatments. Former Vice President Biden s...



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ValueWalk

Trump Will Deliver Stunning Upset: Polls Are Tightening

By insidermonkey. Originally published at ValueWalk.

This is my second follow-up article about the presidential election polls and predictions about Donald Trump losing and the election results. You can read the last article here.

Polls are usually accurate in predicting the outcome of presidential elections. There are two exceptions. When the outcome of the election depends on the results of a single state like Florida and there are only a few thousand votes separating the both candidates. The other exception is when the respondents of a poll don’t reveal their true intentions to the pollsters. This is what happened four years ago. Poll aggregators like Fivethirtyeight failed miserabl...



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Biotech/COVID-19

An epidemiologist explains the new CDC guidance on 15 minutes of exposure and what it means for you

 

An epidemiologist explains the new CDC guidance on 15 minutes of exposure and what it means for you

A girl wearing a mask walks down a street in the Corona neighborhood of Queens on April 14, 2020 in New York City. Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Courtesy of Ryan Malosh, University of Michigan

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has new guidance clarifying what exactly “close cont...



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Politics

How to track your mail-in ballot

 

How to track your mail-in ballot

Make sure you know when your ballot is arriving, and whether it’s been accepted for counting back at your election office. erhui1979/DigitalVision Vectors via Getty Images

Courtesy of Steven Mulroy, University of Memphis

Many voters who want to participate in the election by mail are concerned about when they’ll receive their ballot – and whether it will get back in time to be counted.

The pandemic has caused interest in ...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Doc Copper/Gold Indicator Breaking Out Again?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

The Doc Copper/Gold ratio broke above a 2-year falling channel back in 2016 at (1). Following this breakout, it rallied for the next year. During that year, Copper related assets did very well!

The ratio peaked in the summer of 2018 and created a series of lower highs over the past two years.

The strength of late has the ratio attempting to break above dual resistance at (2).

If the ratio continues to push higher and succeeds in breaking out, Copper, Basic Materials (XLB), and ...



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Chart School

Dow Gann Angle Update

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Time to see what happens to the Dow post US elections.

The Dow Gann Angle Target 3 (from 2007 top) is on the table, and what a ride that will be. The FED went BRRRRR is all the fundamental news you need to know. Gann angles are very good tool to see how the masses are pushing price.


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The last two US elections saw Bitcoin and the DOW rally well for 6 months, due to stimulus. The most bearish 2020 US Election case for the markets is a Biden win with the Senate and Congress controlled by the Democrats, somehow this blog feels that is very unlikely. So what could go wrong!


...

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Digital Currencies

Bitcoin: the UK and US are clamping down on crypto trading - here's why it's not yet a big deal

 

Bitcoin: the UK and US are clamping down on crypto trading – here's why it's not yet a big deal

Where there’s a bit there’s a writ. Novikov Aleksey

Courtesy of Gavin Brown, University of Liverpool

The sale and promotion of derivatives of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies to amateur investors is being banned in the UK by the financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). It is a...



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Mapping The Market

COVID-19 Forces More Than Half of Asset Management Firms to Accelerate Adoption of Digital Marketing Technology

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

There is no doubt that the use of technology to support client engagement initiatives brings both opportunities and threats but this has been brought into sharp focus this year with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The crisis has brought to the fore the need for firms to enable flexibility in client engagement – the expectation that providers will communicate to clients on their terms, at their speed and frequency and on their preferred channels, is now a given. This is even more critical when clients are experiencing unparalleled anxiety from both market conditions and their own personal circumstances.

...

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The Technical Traders

Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling System Suggests Market Peak May Be Near

Courtesy of Technical Traders

Our Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling system is suggesting a moderate price peak may be already setting up in the NASDAQ while the Dow Jones, S&P500, and Transportation Index continue to rally beyond the projected Fibonacci Price Expansion Levels.  This indicates that capital may be shifting away from the already lofty Technology sector and into Basic Materials, Financials, Energy, Consumer Staples, Utilities, as well as other sectors.

This type of a structural market shift indicates a move away from speculation and towards Blue Chip returns. It suggests traders and investors are expecting the US consumer to come back strong (or at least hold up the market at...



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Lee's Free Thinking

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia - The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

 

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia – The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

Courtesy of Lee Adler, WallStreetExaminer 

The numbers of new cases in some of the hardest hit COVID19 states have started to plateau, or even decline, over the past few days. A few pundits have noted it and concluded that it was a hopeful sign. 

Is it real or is something else going on? Like a restriction in the numbers of tests, or simply the inability to test enough, or are some people simply giving up on getting tested? Because as we all know from our dear leader, the less testing, the less...



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Insider Scoop

Economic Data Scheduled For Friday

Courtesy of Benzinga

  • Data on nonfarm payrolls and unemployment rate for March will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • US Services Purchasing Managers' Index for March is scheduled for release at 9:45 a.m. ET.
  • The ISM's non-manufacturing index for March will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the latest week is scheduled for release at 1:00 p.m. ET.
...

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Feb. 26, 1pm EST

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Phil will discuss positions, COVID-19, market volatility -- the selloff -- and more! 

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