Liberty Forged

the State has no money of its own, so it has no power of its own. ` Nock

Recession 2008, 2009, 2010

Posted by Jesse on January 12, 2008

This page gets viewed a lot. I wish I had done a better job on it when I first posted it in Jan of this year 2008. Time to put an update in ordersee this pages update here

———UPDATE—-October 19, 2008——UPDATE——-October 19, 2008——-

Another page added to the list. Lots of links about the business cycle and current market conditions. What methods did these economists use to identify the problems in monetary policy?

———UPDATE———UPDATE————–UPDATE———–

Of course, I will start with two indispensable websites. Awesome reads. Easy to understand (sometimes), concise (yup), and gets to the heart of the matter (always).

There is quite a list of goodies and baddies to choose from. There are books, daily articles, journals, audio, etc. Have a laugh or spend your learning about money, inflation, short selling, business cycles, etc. Valuable insights to be had!

The Bailout Reader http://mises.org/story/3128

The Depression Reader http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig9/recession-reader.ht

I think another particularly relevant source in this matter would have to be a certain congressman’s blog. He was in the presidential race and had a respectable showing despite the odds. A lot of individuals helped him raise a bunch of funding for lots of campaigning. Many would argue his words mean more today to more people than they did at the time he spoke them. In fact, the campaigning continues! But first I’d offer to direct you to a crucial economic insight. But it’s your choice!

In closing this days update, I will leave you with one more great article: Business Cycle Primer If one can grasp this, and I am sure Lew is as eloquent as ever, you are well on your way to filling in all the other gaps.

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The Kondratieff Cycle: Real or Fabricated?

Don’t forget to check out Jim Cramer on Youtube interviewing Ron Paul!!

And be sure to learn a little more about America’s Bubble Economy
This is the first part of a 5 part video given by Peter Schiff. Newly recruited as part of the Ron Paul Campaign!!

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Inflation- Alive and Well [March 4, 2004

“The Treasury department parrots the Fed line that consumer prices, as measured by the consumer price index (CPI), are under control. The most glaring problem is that CPI excludes housing prices, instead tracking rents. The Fed’s easy credit policies have created an artificial mortgage boom, enabling many Americans who would not have met credit standards 30 years ago to buy houses. So demand for rentals has diminished, causing rental housing prices to drop and distorting the CPI downward. However, everyone knows the cost of purchasing a home has increased dramatically in the last ten years. The prices of many other goods and services, including medical care and energy, also have increased substantially in the past decade.”

Bernanke’s State of the Economy Speech: ‘You Are All Dead Ducks’
by Mike Whitney

“Even veteran Fed-watchers were caught off-guard by Chairman Bernanke’s performance before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday. Bernanke was expected to make routine comments on the state of the economy but, instead, delivered a 45-minute sermon detailing the afflictions of the foundering financial system. The Senate chamber was stone-silent throughout. The gravity of the situation is finally beginning to sink in.”

……….Bernanke again:

“In part as the result of the developments in financial markets, the outlook for the economy has worsened in recent months, and the downside risks to growth have increased. To date, the largest economic effects of the financial turmoil appear to have been on the housing market, which, as you know, has deteriorated significantly over the past two years or so. The virtual shutdown of the subprime mortgage market and a widening of spreads on jumbo mortgage loans have further reduced the demand for housing, while foreclosures are adding to the already-elevated inventory of unsold homes. Further cuts in homebuilding and in related activities are likely…. Conditions in the labor market have also softened. Payroll employment, after increasing about 95,000 per month on average in the fourth quarter, declined by an estimated 17,000 jobs in January. Employment in the construction and manufacturing sectors has continued to fall, while the pace of job gains in the services industries has slowed. The softer labor market, together with factors including higher energy prices, lower equity prices, and declining home values, seem likely to weigh on consumer spending in the near term.”

“So, let’s summarize. The banks are battered by their massive subprime liabilities. Housing is in the tank. Manufacturing is down. Food and energy are up. Unemployment is rising. And consumer spending has shriveled to the size of an acorn. All that’s missing is a trumpet blast and the arrival of the Four Horseman. How is it that Bernanke’s economic post-mortem never made its way into the major media? Is there some reason the real state of the economy is being concealed from ‘we the people’?”

Bernanke’s candor is admirable, but it is little relief for the people who will have to soldier-on through the hard times ahead. Perhaps, next time he could spare us all the lengthy oratory and just forward a brief cablegram to Congress saying something like this:

“We are deeply sorry, but we have totally fu**ed up your economy with our monetary hanky-panky. You are all in very deep Doo-doo. Prepare for the worst.”

Read the rest here….

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The Recession’s Regulatory Causes
by Michael S. Rozeff

The U.S. economy may or may not be in recession now. But why split hairs? Why use official definitions? Why use official statistics? Why wait for the NBER to anoint the next recession? The fact is that important segments of the economy, such as banking, homebuilding, and real estate, are in recession now. The odds are that they will soon be joined by others.

………….Since the economy is made up of markets, critics of capitalism will now have a field day blaming the market economy for its imagined shortcomings. Do they praise markets when the economy is growing and creating millions of new jobs and vast new wealth? Of course not, because these critics are biased government apologists. They seize any chance to pound the daylights out of free markets.

We can hardly expect the beneficiaries of big government and haters of free markets to communicate the simple truth: Recessions do not and cannot occur on a systematic basis in a diversified economy composed of free markets.

Since the U.S. economy’s markets are typically not free markets, it does experience recessions as a systematic feature, with the banking system being the usual method of propagation. Recessions only can occur when the government curtails free markets by its usual means: direct control and interference, taxes, subsidies, and regulations. They occur when the government, through these coercive means, manages to create pervasive shocks that mislead so many market participants that recession becomes inevitable.

In the 4 years starting in 2001, the Federal Reserve System (the Fed) increased the M1 money supply by about 6 percent a year. This followed a 7-year period in which M1 was basically flat, or stable, not rising at all. Those 7 years were a non-inflationary period for M1. The rapid and prolonged increase in M1 between 2001 and 2005 after such a lengthy period of stability was an important inflationary shock to the U.S. economy.

Suddenly the banking system was flooded with reserves, which is the fuel behind the M1 increase and a vast increase in loans. The Fed had supplied the banking system with the means to increase its loans dramatically. The housing sector took off. Housing prices began to rise.

It should be noted that some foreign central banks have inflated even more since 2001 and created their own real estate booms. This enhances the odds of a severe worldwide recession.

……..Read the rest here

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Dealing with Recession
By Clifford F. Thies

An old joke is that economists have called 19 of the last 16 recessions. Our signal of a recession is three months running of decline in the index of leading indicators. We have not yet had a recession without first having the signal. But, we have occasionally had the signal without the subsequent recession. Well, on January 18th, the Conference Board released its economic indicators and, with this release, we got the signal of the now long-awaited recession. What does it mean?

………….Instead of responding to complaints about the high rate of inflation by saying a 2 percent rate of inflation is pretty close to price stability, we can now say that a rate of inflation of 3 or 4 percent, which has been accelerating recently, is indeed a cause for concern.

For all the talk by the Federal Reserve about “inflation targeting,” we now see that responding to short-run problems is paramount for the Fed. Holding the line on inflation is something the Fed does when it is convenient. Resorting to inflating the money supply when times are tough is predictable, as is a continuing loss of purchasing power of the US dollar. The only uncertainty is how fast the dollar will lose purchasing power. Will it be at a creeping rate, or at a galloping rate, or at a hyperinflationary rate?

You might think that we learned our lesson about inflation during the 1970s, when we moved first from a creeping to a galloping rate, and then risked a further move to hyperinflation. The double-dip recession we then went through starting in 1979 fell in the second tier of economic downturns (below only the Great Depression). There is currently no indication that a severe downturn is on the horizon. But, if we work hard enough at it, with fiscal and monetary policy pumping up the economy and delaying and exacerbating the inevitable, we can make such a severe recession possible in the future.

This brings me to the Austrian approach to the business cycle and the suddenly revived Keynesian approach embraced by the Federal Reserve, the Bush Administration, the Congress, and the popular media. The Austrian approach would call for the quick and even ruthless liquidation of the malinvestments that were made during the misguided prior boom in the economy. In contrast, the Keynesian approach talks in terms of aggregates without differentiating one type of investment from another, as though the spending of tax rebate checks will have a meaningful impact on the particular sectors of the economy that are in trouble.

………..Just as overoptimism and greed come into the booms of the Austrian business cycle, excessive pessimism and fear come into the busts. A free society requires confidence, as well as business entrepreneurship. Fear is antithetical and often comes in the vanguard of some form of authoritarianism. Thus, what is much more important than tax rebate checks is a sound economy that evinces in people confidence that we can and will work through difficult times.

In the meanwhile, it is a good time for everybody to reconsider his or her own financial situation. Are you, for example, basing your retirement security on “safe” bank deposits and bonds denominated in US dollars, thinking that inflation is a thing of the past? Are you mortgaged to the hilt, maxed out on your credit cards, and otherwise conducting your business as though we will never again have a recession? When used with discretion, debt can be a good thing. But many of us individually, and we as a society, can have too much of a good thing.

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What’s Behind the Fed’s Aggressive Interest-Rate Cut?
By Frank Shostak

……”Bernanke is of the view that changes in financial and credit conditions are important in the propagation of the business cycle through a mechanism that he dubbed the “financial accelerator.”[1]

In his view, it is by means of the “financial accelerator” that a sudden short-lived disruption in financial markets can set in motion a prolonged disruptive and amplified effect on the real economy.

Bernanke suggests that the financial accelerator works through two channels: a credit channel, and a balance sheet channel.”

…….”A key concept in Bernanke’s model is the external premium, which activates the “financial accelerator.” The premium is defined as the difference between the cost to a borrower of borrowing money in financial markets and the opportunity cost of internal funds.

On this Bernanke says:
External finance (raising funds from lenders) is virtually always more expensive than internal finance (using internally generated cash flows), because of the costs that outside lenders bear of evaluating borrowers’ prospects and monitoring their actions.”

…….”In his testimony to the House Financial Services Committee on September 20, the Fed chairman provided the rationale for the hefty cut of 0.5% in the federal funds rate target on September 18:

We took the action to try to get out ahead of the situation and try to forestall potential effects of tighter credit conditions on the broader economy.”

……”In Bernanke’s view a typical financial disruption is associated with:

A weak banking system grappling with non-performing loans and insufficient capital or firms whose creditworthiness has eroded because of high leverage or declining asset values are examples of financial conditions that could undermine growth.

The question that must be asked is what gives rise to the emergence of such conditions? Disruptions in financial markets do not emerge out of the blue.

We suggest that the major cause that sets these disruptions in motion is likely to be the central bank itself.

Whenever the Fed loosens its stance, it sets in motion rising growth in the money supply. Conversely, whenever the Fed tightens its stance it sets the foundation for declining growth in money. It is this that drives the GDP rate of growth and sets in motion the so-called boom-bust cycles.”

……”We suspect that a key factor behind the large cut of 0.5% in the federal funds rate target on September 18 by the Fed was Bernanke’s view that financial-market shocks can produce a severe economic recession.

According to the model that Bernanke follows a sudden disruption in financial markets can set in motion a disruptive amplified effect on the real economy. Hence, to counter this, the Fed chairman is of the view that the central bank must always be on guard to pump enough money to neutralize the negative effect from various shocks. We suggest that by attempting to counter various shocks that are predominantly the product of Fed’s own policies, Bernanke’s Fed has likely made things much worse as far as real economic fundamentals are concerned.

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4 Responses to “Recession 2008, 2009, 2010”

  1. […] manystrom wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerpt What’s Behind the Fed’s Aggressive Interest-Rate Cut? By Frank Shostak ……”Bernanke is of the view that changes in financial and credit conditions are important in the propagation of the business cycle through a mechanism that he dubbed the “financial accelerator.”[1] In his view, it is by means of the “financial accelerator” that a sudden short-lived disruption in financial markets can set in motion a prolonged disruptive and amplified effect on the real economy. Bernanke suggests that the […]

  2. It’s the Economy, Stupid!

    Every day I wake up just like the other 99.999% of the US population and need to head off to work. Not being independently wealthy, or the beneficiary of a trust fund, I have to pull in a paycheck to make ends meet. I have a mortgage payment, a car p…

  3. 7,000,000 jobs is almost here, and its 2008. Congress help us

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  4. […] Posted by Jesse on October 13, 2008 excerpted from Recession 2008, 2009, 2010 […]

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