Category Monetary Policy

Central banks, Inflation and Debt: We’re in trouble…

Central Banks have one real job: avoid inflation! It’s here, and the consequences will be devasting as conventional rate-hiking wisdom is used to fight a wholly exogenous supply side shock. There may be alternatives, but “credibility” is everything to Central Banks.

Bond Markets – Don’t Panic Captain Mainwaring (but don’t look behind you…)

In bonds there is pain as prices tumble – but that does not change the fundamentals of investing in bonds. The risk is rising bond yields will expose the dangerous over-valuations low rate distortion has caused across other financial-assets, perhaps causing more than a few bubbles to pop.

How many reasons to be miserable about markets do you need?

It’s going to be a testing week for markets as a whole slew of negatives, challenges and no-see-ums threaten to overturn everything. It couldn’t look worse… unless of course you remember my key market mantra (read on), and that the sun usually comes up tomorrow. Happy Valentines.. 

2021 – That was the Year that Was…

“The future may dimly be perceived through the veil of the past”, sounds like bad poetry, but has a point. The confusions and conflabulations that characterised 2021 will likely set the tone for what’s coming – what were the key themes of 2021? Best to understand them before trying to fathom what comes next.

China Syndrome and Taper Tantrums – just two of many things to fret about…

Some of the heat was taken out the escalating China Syndrome yesterday when the Chinese regulator held a “secret” meeting with global firms, while Jay Powell took the pressure out of immediate taper fears. Both issues remain sources of massive future pressure on markets – they are sorted for now, but not resolved!

Will the agreement on global tax ever become a reality, and the real threat of financial asset inflation!

The G7 agreement is being hailed as a great step forward, but will it ever happen? Janet Yellen’s call for higher rates is a clear sign the problem of financial asset inflation will finally be addressed – the question is how painful the treatment and taper tantrum will be? Not addressing financial asset inflation is a far bigger risk than the debt crisis many monetary traditionalists perceive has grown from government pandemic spending.  
wheelbarrow of money

Policy Risks Rise!

No surprises from Fed-Head Jay Powell yesterday – no matter how much we fear inflation or recovery pushing rates higher, he reassured us by saying what the market wanted to hear: the US economy remains “a long way from our employment and inflation goals, it is likely to take some time for substantial progress to be achieved.”