Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

Michael Woodford and Adair Turner Agree: CBs Won’t (and Shouldn’t) Sell the Bonds Back

Old news: April 3. But still: Following up on yesterday’s post, see here from Ambrose Evans-Pritchard in The Telegraph (emphasis mine): “All this talk of exit strategies is deeply negative,” [Woodford] told a London Business School seminar on the merits of Helicopter money, or “overt monetary financing”. He said the Bank of Japan made the mistake of […]

Defining “Reserves”

I’ve run into quite a bit of confusion in conversations discussing bank reserves, and found occasion to get precise on the usage in recent comments. I thought I’d share it with others. This has been vetted by several who are more worthy than I, so I feel quite confident in offering it up. 1. “Reserve […]

The Market Doesn’t Think the Fed Will Ever Sell Those Bonds Back

You know the trillion dollars a year of Treasury and GSE bonds that the Fed’s buying up? (And the $3-trillion+ it’s already holding?) It’s driving up bond prices and suppressing yields, right? And if it starts selling them back, it will drive down prices and increase yields, right? The market should be front-running that, right? […]

Do Collateral Chains Create Real Value?

Some of the keenest monetary thinkers out there, over at FT Alphaville — Izabella Kaminska, Cardiff Garcia, etc. (I’ll even throw in Tyler Durden at Zero Hedge, with qualifications) — have been pointing us for years towards the work of IMF Senior Economist Manmohan Singh on collateral chains in financial markets. He provides wonderfully cogent explanation of […]

If Interest Rates Rise, We Can Plummet the National Debt!

Dean Baker makes what seems to be a stunningly obvious point, one that I haven’t seen discussed anywhere. Condensed and with emphasis added for your consideration: …the value of our [government] debt will plummet if interest rates rise… we could buy back long-term debt issued today at interest rates of less than 2.0 percent for discounts of […]

I find it Imp – ossible to disagree with Krugman

Recently, I was pleased to note a disagreement between Paul Krugman and Dean Baker.  Finally, I hoped, a chance to prove I am not a knee jerk acolyte of Krugman.  Sadly I found I agreed with Krugman and not Baker (ouch).  But I didn’t give up hope, until yesterday. Surely, I can disagree with Krugman […]

JzB Smackdown with Some Thoughts on Trends and Context

João Marcus Marinho Nunes is personally offended by my previous Angry Bear post.   Personally I was ‘offended’ by being ‘accused’ of “using short-time series data”, ignoring “what is a valid context” and “cherry picking”. Which was odd, since I didn’t accuse him of anything.  In fact, he wasn’t even on my radar screen.  He […]