election

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Italy Votes No(!)

Et tu, Brute?
Sunday, December 4, 2016, 10:52 PM

The Italian vote delivered the most unsurprising surprise today – another rejection of the elites by the people.

Oh the humanity!

Time for the elites to get out of their echo chambers and find out what life is like for the people laboring under their poorly thought through and inhumane policies. 

Remember, we humans like it better when things are fair and just.  Heck, it goes further than that; primates like it better when things are fair and just. » Read more

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Get Ready... Change Is Upon Us

The 'economic peace' we've enjoyed for decades is over
Friday, November 11, 2016, 9:05 PM

At certain times, it’s really not that hard to predict "what" is going to happen next after disastrously short-sighted and self-interested policies are enacted. Predicting the "when", with precision, is much tricker. But obvious misguided economic policies are destined to have a limited period of apparent (but false) prosperity, after which they end with a nasty Bang!.

We have entered just such a time. This isn't a Trump vs Clinton thing; I'd make this claim regardless of who won this week's presidential election -- as our plight is much bigger than a single Administration. And my observation is that neither political party had much interest beyond some temporary election year lip-service to the economic plight of the middle class.

And by “middle class” I mean anybody not in the top 5% economic bracket. For those doing the math at home, that leaves the remaining 95% of us stuck in the meat grinder. » Read more

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Off The Cuff: The Sell-Off In Bonds

Is the world's biggest bubble now bursting?
Friday, November 11, 2016, 4:35 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and John Rubino discuss:

  • Deconstructing The Election Results
    • Why the upset happened
  • Insurmountable Odds?
    • Trump inherits a country in tremendous debt
  • The Sell-off In Bonds
    • Is the world's biggest bubble bursting?
  • The Age Of The Iconoclast
    • Brexit + Trump is just the start of this age of upsets

So much to talk about this week....  Chris and John deconstruct Trump's upset win as well as the tremendous challenges he faces, inheriting a grossly overleveraged economy that is grossly overdue for a market correction. They're also are extremely concerned by the sharp acceleration we've seen this week in the sell-off in the bond market. As a reminder, the size of the bond market dwarfs other financial assets (except derivatives). It is "for all the marbles", as they say.

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today. » Read more

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OK, Here's What We Think Is In Store After Last Night

All the probabilities just shifted
Wednesday, November 9, 2016, 3:08 PM

Hopefully the wake-up call has been sent to the elites on both sides of the aisle. It’s time to pay attention to everyone again, not just your cloistered circle of buddies.

An important point needs to be raised here. Whether it happened now, or later, the basic fact remains that the future was always going to come to the moment when a tiny elite could not take and more from a shrinking pie without creating a backlash.

The only open question was when that was going to occur.

Well, it just happened.

The next question is whether that will be heeded now or, as was done in 2008 by the Fed, utterly ignored for one more chance on the Merry Go Round.

While a lot depends on Trump’s eventual team and policy priorities, the trajectory of increasing economic hardship for the 95%-ers out there is going to keep trudging along as we wait for additional clarity.

Those forces of increasing disenchantment will not evaporate for no reason.  It took many years for people to finally become disillusioned with Obama.  Trump gets no such grace period. 

I’ve yet to meet anybody who likes the man, so he won’t get much in the way of good behavior credits like Obama got.

So what matters most are... » Read more

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Off The Cuff: Between A Rock & A Hard Place

No good options left for the economy
Friday, October 21, 2016, 3:06 AM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, John Rubino and I discuss:

  • The Politics Of Paucity
    • Why our current leaders are singularly ill-equipped to deal with de-growth
  • Rate Hike/Fake Hike
    • Is future central bank tightening a fantasy story?
  • Destination Hyperinflation
    • It's the safest bet (in the long term)
  • Prospect Theory
    • The pain of losses outweighs the pleasure of gains

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today. » Read more

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Off The Cuff: Death By Status Quo

The establishment has become the enemy
Friday, September 30, 2016, 12:56 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and John Rubino discuss:

  • Debate Debrief
    • A Rorschach test for the nation
  • Death By Status Quo
    • The establishment is feeding itself on everyone else's future
  • Higher Oil Prices On The Horizon?
    • The turn back up may be nigh
  • Deutsche Bank Debacle
    • How bad could it get?

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today. » Read more

Podcast

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James Howard Kunstler: Racketeering Is Ruining Us

Understanding why there are all those hands in your wallet
Monday, August 15, 2016, 9:33 PM

If you don't understand what's causing a particular problem, then it's pretty difficult to come up with an effective solution.

Author, commentator and longtime friend-of-the-site James Howard Kunstler returns to our podcast this week to discuss the importance of accurate diagnosis -- in this case, of the scourge he sees as accelerating America's downslide into economic and social decline: Racketeering. » Read more

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Off The Cuff: Rage Against The Machine

The electorate is beginning to reject the establishment
Friday, March 4, 2016, 2:27 AM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and Mish Shedlock discuss:

  • Rage Against The Machine
    • A populist revolt may be brewing
  • Stagnation vs Recession?
    • Will the true economy please show itself?
  • Payroll Bingo
    • What will the number be?
  • Losing Control
    • Why outsiders are more popular than expected
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Off the Cuff: The Importance Of Global Capital Flows

More responsible for prices than any other current factor
Thursday, November 6, 2014, 10:56 PM

In this week's Off the Cuff podcast, Chris and Brian Pretti discuss:

  • Japan's Halloween Massacre
    • The most glaring sign yet that the central banks are desperate
  • Capital Flows Are King Right Now
    • The reason we have record-high markets despite crummy fundamentals
  • Musical Chairs
    • Every (market) player has fun until the music stops
  • Throwing The Bums Out
    • As our lifestyles contract, we vote out the incumbents
Blog

2012 Year in Review

Free markets, rule of law, and other urban legends
Friday, December 21, 2012, 3:34 PM

Background

I was just trying to figure it all out.

~ Michael Burry, hedge fund manager

Every December, I write a Year in Review that has now found a home at Chris Martenson’s website PeakProsperity.com.1,2,3 What started as a simple summary intended for a couple dozen people morphed over time into a much more detailed account that accrued over 25,000 clicks last year.4 'Year in Review' is a bit of a misnomer in that it is both a collage of what happened, plus a smattering of issues that are on my radar right now. As to why people care what an organic chemist thinks about investing, economics, monetary policy, and societal moods I can only offer a few thoughts.

For starters, in 33 years of investing with a decidedly undiversified portfolio, I had only one year in which my total wealth decreased in nominal dollars. For the 13 years beginning 01/01/00—the 13 toughest investing years of the new millennium!—I have been able to compound my personal wealth at an 11% annualized rate. This holds up well against the pros. I am also fairly good at distilling complexity down to simplicity and seem to be a congenital contrarian. I also have been a devout follower of Austrian business cycle theory—i.e., free market economics—since the late 1990s.4

Each review begins with a highly personalized analysis of my efforts to get through another year of investing followed by a more holistic overview of what is now a 33-year quest for a ramen-soup-free retirement. These details may be instructive for those interested in my approach to investing. The bulk of the review, however, describes thoughts and observations—the year’s events told as a narrative. The links are copious, albeit not comprehensive. Some are flagged with enthusiasm. Everything can be found here.5 » Read more