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The End Of Cheap Debt: The Fall & Rise Of Interest Rates

Perhaps the greatest single trend impacting the next decade
Friday, September 7, 2018, 6:54 PM

Total debt (public + private) in America is currently at a staggering $67 trillion.

That number has been rising fast over the past 47 years, following the US dollar's transformation into a fully-fiat currency in August of 1971.

Perhaps this wouldn't be such a big concern were America's income, measured by GDP, we're growing at a similar rate. But it's not. » Read more

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We Are All Lab Rats In The Largest-Ever Monetary Experiment In Human History

And how do things usually work out for the rat?
Friday, August 17, 2018, 7:10 PM

This global flood of freshly-printed 'thin air' money has no parallel in the historical records. All around the world, each of us is part of a grand experiment being conducted without the benefits of either prior experience or controls. Its outcome will be binary: either super-great or spectacularly awful.

If the former, then no worries. We'll just continue to borrow and spend in ever-greater amounts -- forever. Perpetual prosperity for everyone!

But if things hit a breaking point, then you had better be prepared for some truly bad times. » Read more

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David Stockman: The World Economy Is At An Epochal Pivot

A 'Great Reset' approaches
Friday, August 10, 2018, 7:00 PM

David Stockman warns that the global economy has reached an "epochal pivot", a moment when the false prosperity created from $trillions in printed money by the world's central banks lurches violently into reverse.

Stockman's main warning is that there's no bid underneath this market -- that when perception shifts from greed to fear, the bottom is much farther down than most investors realize. In his words, it's "rigged for implosion".
 
He predicts a Great Reset is imminent. One that, for those who see it coming and take prudent action today, will offer tremendous, perhaps once-in-a-lifetime, investment opportunity once the dust settles.
Insider

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The Coming Valuation Crisis

And why it will be so difficult to contain
Friday, July 27, 2018, 6:49 PM

Executive Summary

  • The Fed's inability to recognize the true dynamics of the 2008 crisis has re-inflated a market bubble and unfairly rewarded the big banks
  • More credit/liquidity cannot solve valuation/collateral crises. But that's exactly what central banks tried to do -- creating today's "Everything Bubble"
  • How the Crisis of 2018/2019 will differ from 2008
  • Why this time, the Fed's fixes will be futile

If you have not yet read The FAANG-nary In The Coal Mine, available free to all readers, please click here to read it first. Note that this Part 2 is an updated version of a report first published in 2014.

In Part 1, we noted the eroding good options for investment capital in today's "Everything bubble" financial markets, as well as the dangerous risks that another 2008-style crisis is brewing. If markets are fractal, as argued by Benoit Mandelbrot, then we can anticipate more “once in a lifetime” crises than economists expect, and that such crises will be less predictable than expected.

In Part 2 of this report, we explain why the policies of the governments and central banks around the world that have boosted assets such as stocks, bonds and real estate to new bubble highs will cause a crisis that will be as damaging as 2008 -- yet unfold quite differently, in ways the system is not prepared for.

Fighting the Wrong Battles

The outlines of the coming crisis were readily visible in 2007; the subprime domino was toppling the market for mortgage backed securities which in turn was toppling the market for credit defaults, collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) and a host of other exotic financial instruments.

Those of you who were actively following stock markets in 2007 and 2008 may recall the wild surges of euphoria that accompanied every Fed policy announcement. Stock indices shot up every time, only to falter once again as the liquidity injections failed to resolve the underlying collateral/valuation crisis.

When liquidity programs failed to fix the erosion of collateral, markets went into a free-fall.

We can anticipate that the Fed (and other central banks) will respond to a renewed collateral/valuation crisis in the same way they resolved the crisis in 2009—by buying assets directly in vast quantities.  The Fed’s option of buying stocks directly (for example, index contracts or funds) is sometimes referred to as the Nuclear Option, the ultimate backstop to a global meltdown.

But the nuclear option won't fix anything, because... » Read more

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Off The Cuff: Moral Hazard

The culprits (banks & corps) are protected from their crimes
Friday, July 20, 2018, 12:43 PM

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

  • Moral Hazard
    • We've unwisely insulated the banks from the repercussions of their actions
  • The Protected Class & Rising Populist Anger
    • In many ways, the elite today are above the law. And public resentment is brewing.
  • Global Debt Is Accelerating
    • Wherever the breaking point is, we're now going to hit it sooner
  • The Coming Tech Wreck
    • Faith in the FAANGs is higher than ever. That's dangerous.

By insulating the players from the consequences of their actions, we've created the incentive to take extreme risk in the puruit of extreme profit. Why shouldn't the banks manipulate the system if their worst punishment is a weak slap on the wrist?

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio as well as all of PeakProsperity.com's other premium content.
Insider

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How The Coming Oil Shock Will Impact Absolutely Everything

Price spikes, supply crunches, and recession everywhere
Friday, July 6, 2018, 7:44 PM

Executive Summary

  • The Inevitable Supply Crunch
  • Why The Central Planners Are Making This Worse
  • Why The US Shale Industry Will Implode (And Soon)
  • The Growing Geopolitical Risks To Oil Supply
  • The Shock Felt Round The World

If you have not yet read Part 1: Why The Coming Oil Crunch Will Shock The World available free to all readers, please click here to read it first.

As I’ve written extensively in the past, there are four entire years of missing upstream oil and gas investment (2014—2017) that will lead to an equivalent period of missing oil and gas supply sometime in the future. With the usual 5-7-year lag between discovery and production, my time frame for that was somewhere between the end of 2018 and 2022.

When -- not if -- that supply shock hits, there is no amount of fresh investment money that can rapidly bring new supply on line. Doing so just takes time -- measured in quarters or years:

As we enter into the second half of 2018, the supply/demand balance has already tipped into a slight deficit. I am clearly predicting that:

  1. this supply imbalance will only get worse, and that
  2. oil prices will have to rise to compensate.

The only development that could possibly prevent this from happening would be a rip-roaring recession, as only economic decline has proven to be able to reduce demand by as much as will needed to avoid this supply crunch.

As we can see from the below chart, the world has been... » Read more

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The End of Growth

Either it ends, or we do
Friday, June 22, 2018, 7:57 PM

More and more, I hear that folks are feeling frustrated and betrayed, combined with a sense of loss and despair. I feel this way, too.

At a deep level, what ails us is not a host of unrelated, intractable problems, but the fact that our model of pursuing eternal economic growth simply isn't working anymore. It doesn’t work for the planet’s increasingly strained ecosystems, nor does it work for the bottom 99% of folks in society (i.e., the non-elites). The various health epidemics society suffers from today are merely symptoms of a larger acute spiritual crisis.

But viewed at a certain angle, this may be a good sign.

Why? Because in order to shift from one model to another, the old one first has to become unbearable. » Read more

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A Hard Rain's a-Gonna Fall

The prospects for the rest of the year are awful
Friday, June 15, 2018, 6:55 PM

As the Federal Reserve kicked off its second round of quantitative easing in aftermath of the Great Financial Crisis, hedge fund manager David Tepper predicted that nearly all assets would rise tremendously in response. 

History proved Tepper right: financial and other risk assets have shot the moon. Equities have long since rocketed past their pre-crisis highs, bonds continued rising as interest rates stayed at historic lows, and many real estate markets are now back in bubble territory. 

And everyone learned to love the 'Fed put' and stop worrying.

But as King Louis XV and Bob Dylan both warned us, what's coming next will change everything. » Read more

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The End Of Stimulus? (And The Start Of The Crash?)

What the most important chart in the world is predicting
Friday, May 25, 2018, 7:29 PM

Back in January of 2016 we saw what appeared to be, and in my opinion should have been, the end of the Everything Bubble blown by the word's central banking cartel.

The carnage started in the emerging markets. Highly-leveraged positions and carry trades began to unwind. That's a fancy way of saying that all the big, sophisticated investors -- who were busy borrowing heavily in countries with cheap money (the US, Japan, and Europe) and using that debt to speculate in markets offering higher yields (junk debt, emerging markets, stocks, etc.) -- began to reverse their trades.

We are now seeing the same rapidly-deteriorating sequence in the markets today, here in late May 2018. And this time, it doesn't look like the central banks will be able to ride to the rescue as they have time and again over the past decade. » Read more

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Time To Choose

Will you be an agent of depletion or regeneration?
Friday, May 11, 2018, 10:13 PM

There’s a vast revolution underway. And it’s time to pick sides.

Your choice couldn't be more critically important. Quite possibly, the entire fate of the human species hangs in the balance.

It's time to decide: Will you be an agent of depletion or regeneration? » Read more