201707.25
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China’s Banks Deliver RMB In June

Updated statistics from the People’s Bank of China shed some light on changing money conditions in RMB. The Big 4 State-owned banks have been the primary liquidity conduit for all policies and activities going back to 2014. These institutions had been since the middle of 2016 increasingly squeezed as to excess funding available to be…

201707.25
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What Manufacturing Productivity Suggests About ‘Dollars’ And Stagnation

In a report released last week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) found that Multi-Factor Productivity rose in only 21 of the 86 categories of the manufacturing industry in 2015. Unlike labor productivity which is more easily calculated, Multi-Factor Productivity measures attempt to take account of all business inputs (including labor). Capitalism is by its…

201707.25
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Copper And The Upside

Copper prices are up very sharply today, igniting across markets a reborn “reflation.” Treasuries along with eurodollar futures have been stuck in anti-“reflation” for quite some time. Copper, on the other hand, is not just now breaking from the pack. Going back to May 9, this important economic indication has been so far steadily bucking…

201707.24
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Why It Will Continue, Again Continued

Part of “reflation” was always going to be banks making more money in money. These days that is called FICC – Fixed Income, Currency, Commodities. There’s a bunch of activities included in that mix, but it’s mostly derivative trading books forming the backbone of math-as-money money. The better the revenue conditions in FICC, the more…

201707.24
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Missing Money Inverts

There was a funny sort of Congressional exchange all the way back in November 2005 that in a weird way defines our world today. At the nomination proceedings on whether to confirm Ben Bernanke as Alan Greenspan’s successor, Senator Jim Bunning of Kentucky wanted the prospective Fed Chairman to first answer for M3. It had…

201707.20
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No Flip Flop in Europe

Well, that clears that up. In case you missed it, back on June 27 Mario Draghi triggered the latest declared BOND ROUT!!! with what was characterized as a very upbeat economic assessment for Europe. And if things are moving forward there, they just have to be everywhere else. It came off as “hawkish” in the…

201707.19
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Why Might Hong Kong Still Be Interesting?

When the People’s Republic of China (PROC) was granted full UN status in 1971, everything was then set in motion. The successor to Chaing Kai-shek’s nationalist government in the Republic of China (ROC, or what we call today Taiwan) was originally granted as a founding member and one of five Security Council seats. UN General…

201707.19
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Y2K Was Really The Great Uncertainty

In late 1999, the Federal Reserve established what was ostensibly an emergency credit facility. On October 1 that year, this offshoot of the Discount Window went live. Its main feature was that it was to be a primary program, meaning that banks didn’t have to prove they could access funds elsewhere first. They could go…

201707.19
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The Plural of Anecdotes Is Beige

As noted before, the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book collection of local bank district anecdotes are fascinating for all the wrong reasons. What is revealed is not the state of the economy, but rather the state of how policymakers perceive or often wish the economy was at various points. If the 2007 Beige Books are a…

201707.18 4

Questions

Why is inflation ex-food and energy considered core? Isn’t food and gas about as core as it gets for most people? Why do economists think it is important to stabilize the price of luxuries but not the price of needs? As a society shouldn’t we prefer a monetary policy that stabilizes food, energy and shelter…