Jeffrey P. Snider

Ignorance or Deceit, Yet Again

I may be a week late to the “most important chart in the world”, but it demands a rational response. I had thought that the commentary surrounding this week’s retail sales release was the height of rational expectations theory deception, but I was clearly wrong. In what is passing for analysis, some are proclaiming a .. read more

Intentions On Housing

I speculated in May last year that the introduction of the taper concept was in large part due to what Jeremy Stein articulated in February 2013, namely the idea that certain “markets” were becoming overheated in the “reach for yield.” In essence, it amounted to an attempt to “talk down” assets, chief among them the .. read more

Low Inflation Taper Theory

There was considerable attention given to Janet Yellen’s appeal toward “optimal control” language in prior speeches and toward her confirmation. The idea is such that the newly committed 2% inflation target does not need to be a “rule.” Under optimal control, the FOMC may tolerate an inflation rate above that target if it allowed unemployment .. read more

Always the Dollars

Even though the data is stale by the time of its eventual release, I think the TIC figures still maintain some relevance. If nothing else, even on a rear-facing basis, it provides more consistent data to confirm or deny previous narratives. To this point, that description includes central banks mobilizing dollar assets to deflect continuous .. read more

The Inconvenient Marriage of Yuan and Gold

The latest money growth figures from China seemed to have brought back worries over more disorder in finance. Tomorrow the Chinese government will release GDP figures for the first quarter and current expectations (I know) are for 7.3% Y/Y growth. That would be the slowest rate of expansion in memory. The two are inextricably linked .. read more

Ignorance or Deceit?

When you encounter rational expectations theory you cannot help but see its totalitarian potential. The most basic premise is that policy expectations influence the behavior of agents, and thus changes in policy expectations influence changes in current behavior. If the Fed makes you think it will take an “inflationary” stance, then theory proponents expect that .. read more

Friday FOMC Memories: Bent Straight Lines

I suppose when your entire task derives from regression-based statistics, there is the tendency to incorporate straight lines into even your own thought patterns. Of course, that leads to self-reinforcing bias and should be canceled by some governing process. Usually that governing process takes the form of applied knowledge (as opposed to math-based knowledge) and .. read more

Wholesale Revisions

The economic theme of the 2013 was inventory as it accumulated in the retail apex of the supply chain. Wholesalers have been far more cautious about expanding inventory, coming far short of even 2012 levels after the dramatic experience after the 2012 holiday season. Despite this conscious desire to not overextend, they may not have .. read more