Sometimes it’s a lot easier to sit down at the table than it is to fold your hand and leave.
Nearly four months after it started, the Federal Reserve continues to run overnight repo operations and it’s unclear when the central bank will actually end these “emergency” measures.
The Fed stepped into the repo markets last September to “unplug” the financial system’s “plumbing” with an injection of cash. It was the first such move since the financial crisis a decade ago. The move stabilized the markets, but months later, it doesn’t appear the Fed has a viable exit strategy.
Did you have a piggy bank when you were a kid?
I did. And it almost never had anything in it.
We’re less than a week away from New Years Day and I already have my 2020 resolution queued up and ready to go.
Wanna know what it is?
I hereby resolve not to make any New Year resolutions!
As we approach the end of 2019, gold is on track for a healthy yearly gain. To date, the yellow metal is up over 16% on the year.
It’s always interesting talking about gains in the price of gold because when you get down to it, it all depends on when you got into the market. If you bought an ounce of gold on Jan. 1 of this year and sold it this morning, you’d have pocketed around $208 (less any taxes and fees). But if you bought your gold at the peak price this year and sold it this morning, you’d be out about $68.
So, when we say gold is up or down, you always have to ask a second question: since when? The price can be simultaneously up and down at the same moment depending on the answer to that question.
Moving is awful.
I’m speaking from recent experience. We are in the process of moving from central Kentucky to northern Florida. I say “in the process” because you don’t just move. It consumes your life for months on end.
A paper by Scott A. Wolla and Kaitlyn Frerking for the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis warns that the Fed’s own policy could lead to “economic ruin.”
The paper titled “Making Sense of National Debt” explains the pros and cons of national borrowing in typical Keynesian fashion. In a nutshell, a little debt is a good thing, but too much debt can become a problem.
But in the process of explaining national debt, Wolla and Frerking stumble into an ugly truth — Federal Reserve money printing can destroy a country’s economy.
People spend a lot of money for headphones and earbuds. I totally get it. I’m a bit of an audiophile myself. There’s nothing like good music played through good-sounding headphones. But in my never-to-be-humble opinion, a lot of the high-end headphones are utter crap. This is because of the obsession with boosting the bass.
Hey! Whoever just said, “OK boomer,” I heard that! And I’m not a boomer. I’m an X-er. So turn up the Nirvana.
Fiscal 2020 started just like fiscal 2019 ended – with a massive federal budget deficit. And that has Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell worried. In an ironic bit of political theater, Powell lectured Congress about the spending he helps facilitate.
The budget shortfall last month was 34% higher than the October 2018 deficit, coming in at $134.5 billion, according to the latest Treasury Department report. That starts fiscal 2020 off on track to eclipse a $1 trillion deficit.
Since moving to Florida, I’ve been able to spend a little bit of time on the beach. It’s interesting watching what people pick up. You can kind of categorize people based on their haul of beach-combing treasures.
First-timers to the beach will basically pick up anything. Broken cockle-shells are worthy of the newbies’ treasure bag, as are sticks, feathers and generic rocks. Hey – it came out of the ocean. It’s probably a whale bone!
As I write this, the Federal Reserve is in the midst of its October FOMC meeting. The central bank is widely expected to cut interest rates another 25 basis points. If the Fed follows through, it will be the third cut in three meetings, totaling 75 basis points since July.
Although the Fed continues to call this a “mid-cycle adjustment,” Peter Schiff called the rate cut in July the first one on the road to zero. There’s nothing so far to cast any doubt on that view.
But the Fed is not alone. It joins the majority of the world’s central banks on a race to lower rates and inject more easy money into the world’s economy. As of this month, a total of 54 central banks in both developed and emerging markets have cut their policy/base interest rates.