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Reading on the Financial Markets: 7/15/13

I have for quite a while been meaning to articulate how I view the U.S. as experiencing not just a financial ponzi, but also a political ponzi (corporate/bureaucratic duopoly), and an ethical ponzi (short-sighted materialism).  But alas, I am too lazy or otherwise occupied to do so.  So I will just keep slipping some of my favorite non-financial ponzi reading into these lists.

Paul Craig Roberts wrote a fiery diatribe on The Burning Platform suggesting that, ultimately, revolution against our well-financed political class is unlikely to succeed by peaceful means alone.

An interesting read from Noahpion on the nature of belief, as applied to economics.

A list within a list.  Here’s a good compilation of articles on government spying from Washingtonsblog.

Charles Hugh Smith discusses an increasing divergence between an overworked private sector and an increasing group of chronically unemployed.  As startling as anything is this chart, as debt-driven growth looks increasingly tapped out:

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Reading on the Financial Markets: 6/12/13

On PragCap, Surley Trader suggests the world markets are closely watching (and copying) the Nikkei.  “Yen = Nikkei = expected inflation”, as he puts it.  I couldn’t agree more.

Of much greater interest to me is the Edward Snowden story.  Though it doesn’t tie directly to financial markets, I do see an associative correlation in the idea of central planning.  We see it in the markets and we see it on the societal level – the desire for authority to control that which they can’t.  It’s an urge as old as mankind.

As part of the same over-arching story, Matt Taibbi aptly addresses the Bradley Manning trial, pointing out that “If you can be punished for making public a crime, then the government doing the punishing is itself criminal.”

Charles Hugh Smith’s thoughts on the Surveillance State, as it is.

Here’s the Guardian’s account of how the story of Edward Snowden’s Big Reveal unfolded, along with a video interview.  One of the most influential books on my thinking is the Gulag Archipelago, which I read in my early 20’s.  Snowden’s comments at 7.30-ish are exactly in line with how Stalin oppressed Soviets, and it is the scenario that I believe is so worrisome.

Daily Reading on the Financial Markets: 5/3/12

From Zero Hedge, commentary on the Office of Debt Management quarterly report, which touches on a wide range of interesting topics, including fixed income ETF’s, Algo trading of Treasuries, and HFT impact on the Treasury market.

From FTAlphaville, the marginal cost of producing a barrel of oil will be near $100 next year for non-OPEC producers.

From NYT, Edward Conrad’s take on the purpose of fabulous wealth.

Daily Reading on the Financial Markets: 5/1/12

From PragCap,  unemployment in Spain now tops that of the U.S… during the Great Depression.

From Marketwatch, Chicago PMI registered its lowest reading since September of 2009.

I don’t buy it, but at Daily Beast Daniel Gross makes the case that the U.S. is in better shape than anywhere in the world.

In John Hussman’s latest, he notes that his 10 year projection for equity return ranks in the bottom 1% of the last century.  I think he disagrees with Daniel Gross.

From TED, Michael Norton suggests money CAN buy happiness.  So long as you give it away:

Gold not money?

Recently (and already infamously), Ben Bernanke asserted that “gold is not money.”

The markets speak in actions not words, and the markets are making pretty clear what they think of that assertion.  This is a chart of the last 6 months, Gold vs. Euro vs. US Dollar.  The Dollar and Euro are measured against one another (along with a basket that involves other Fiat currencies).  Note that the USD (after a pronounced year-long slide) attempted to bottom and rally… rising support, only to break to the downside last week.  As the Dollar rallied, the Euro has been steadily declining.  But, even with the Dollar’s fall last week, the Euro has been unable to punch through upside resistance.  How has gold handled it?

Which of the three would you like to have determining your purchasing power as “money”?

Ahhh… Uncle Ben.  Stick to making rice.

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%

An excellent article by Joseph Stiglitz in Vanity Fair. It’s a few months old, but worth re-reading.   Just a little reminder of who the great Ponzi benefits most…

http://www.vanityfair.com/society/features/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105?fb_ref=social_fblike&fb_source=profile_oneline

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