201804.20
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Transitory’s Japanese Cousin

Thomas Hoenig was President of the Federal Reserve’s Kansas City branch for two decades. He left that post in 2011 to become Vice Chairman of the FDIC. Before that, Mr. Hoenig as a voting member of the FOMC in 2010 cast the lone dissenting vote in each of the eight policy meetings that year (meaning…

201803.20
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The Real Basis For These ‘Rate Hikes’

Tomorrow, it is widely expected that the FOMC will vote for another 25 bps “rate hike.” The long end of the UST curve is already just as unenthused as ever, while the short end expects higher yields on money substitutes. The result is the very familiar collapse in the yield curve, one that like both…

201803.01
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Still None, And Even More Reasons To Expect None

The parallels between the last few years and those at the end of the 1990’s are striking. There was a few years ago the monetary intrusion of the “rising dollar” which at its worst seriously depressed the global economy. Oil prices crashed, as did several key currencies, and deflationary pressures that often accompany a significant…

201802.28
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The Only Thing That Matters (Europe)

Effective June 10, 2014, the European Central Bank cut the interest rate it paid on its deposit account to less than zero. That instrument in forming the floor for what is a money market corridor in European policy, it was the world’s first major NIRP experiment. Europe’s economy had by GDP been growing again for…

201802.23
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Central In Name Only (CINO?)

There is far too much shorthand in the study of the economy and markets. We take so many things for granted, we never really stop to ask if its appropriate that we should. The desire for quick rules of thumb is understandable enough given a complex world. There is probably nothing more in it than…

201802.20
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What The Petroyuan Is Not

In mainstream monetary convention, bank reserves are at the center of the monetary pyramid. They are the byproduct of any central bank policy which requires direct action. In the US system, they had been absent, however, until around 2008. The reason was the Federal Reserve’s belief that it didn’t require any change in the corresponding…

201802.14
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So, Where Is It?

The Fed in its Beige Book as well as in the speeches of several of its officials has referenced a labor shortage for years now. On the one hand, that is understandable given the trajectory of the unemployment rate. All the way back in 2013, during the so-called taper tantrum, it was the rapid drop…

201801.31
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The Historical Warnings of Money

It’s interesting, to me anyway, that an image of the Roman goddess Juno remains to this day on the logo of the Bank of England. There are many stories about her role as it relates to money, but what cannot be denied is that the very word itself came to us from her temple. The…

201801.05
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What’s Missing In Europe Is What’s Missing Everywhere

American central bankers and economists aren’t alone in their Phillips Curve nightmare. They are joined by others practically everywhere else around the world. In Europe, for example, the unemployment rate there continues to fall while inflation keeps on misbehaving in its meandering. Unlike the US, however, the Europeans don’t have the luxury of burying millions…

201712.19
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Sick of ‘Dollars’, But What Else Is There?

If China wishes to ever throw off the shackles of the eurodollar system, and they do, to eventually go out on its own in an RMB dominated world there is a lot to cleanup long before that’s ever an attainable goal. To start with, we don’t know near enough about what’s going on inside that…