Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee has signed a bill into law that creates a process for the state to buy, sell, and hold gold and silver. This sets a foundation for Tennessee to achieve more financial independence with gold and silver reserves and could help undermine the Federal Reserve’s monopoly on money.
Could the commercial real estate market be the next thing to break in this bubble economy?
The rampant money creation and zero percent interest rates during the COVID pandemic on top of three rounds of quantitative easing and more than a decade of artificially low interest rates in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis created all kinds of distortions and malinvestments in the economy and the financial system. It was inevitable that something would break when the Federal Reserve tried to raise interest rates in order to fight the price inflation it caused with its loose monetary policy.
In the week before it raised interest rates another 25 basis points to fight inflation, the Federal Reserve added more than $94 billion to its balance sheet. This was on top of the nearly $300 billion it piled onto the balance sheet in the first week of its bank bailout.
The balance sheet reveals that Fed has loaned banks nearly $400 billion in money created out of thin air in just two weeks.
The Federal Reserve is trying to walk a tightrope — in a hurricane.
After rate hikes resulted in the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, the Federal Reserve and the US Treasury stepped in with a bailout. With that hole in the dam seemingly plugged for the time being, the Fed pushed forward and raised interest rates by another 25 basis points at its March meeting.
In the wake of two major bank failures, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) deposit insurance effectively went to infinity. And there is no reason to believe it will be temporary.
As Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank were toppling, the government rushed in to guarantee 100 percent of both banks’ deposits. It was touted as an emergency measure to maintain confidence in the banking system and prevent runs at other banks. In effect, it bailed out wealthy depositors at two failing banks.
The demise of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank was just the tip of the iceberg. As it turns out, hundreds of banks are at risk. This explains why the Federal Reserve and US Treasury rushed to provide what is effectively a bailout for the entire banking system.
In the first week, the Federal Reserve handed out more than $300 billion in loans through its newly created Bank Term Funding Program (BTFP).
The Federal Reserve added nearly $300 billion to its balance sheet in a single week as it kicked off its loan bailout program for banks.
In effect, the Fed loaned troubled banks $300 billion of new money that was created out of thin air.
In other words, we got $300 billion in inflation in a single week.
As the old saying goes, if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it’s probably a duck.
Well, if it looks like a bailout, walks like a bailout, and talks like a bailout, it’s probably a bailout.
The annual rise in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for February came in at 6%. This was down from the 6.4% annual increase charted in January. The eighth straight monthly decline in CPI seems to have restored faith that the Federal Reserve is winning the inflation fight. But everybody should probably stop and remember that the target is 2%.
Six percent is a lot bigger than 2%.
February has historically been a big budget deficit month, but the Biden administration still managed to overachieve and run the second-largest February deficit ever. The only time the US government has run a February deficit bigger than the $262.4 billion shortfall last month was in February 2021 in the midst of the COVID stimulus.
This raises an important question: between a budding financial crisis and a US government spending problem, how is the Federal Reserve ever going to get price inflation back to its mythical 2% target?