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  • Ebola is the New Weather Excuse

    The perennially-optimistic crowd on Wall Street never lets the truth get in the way of a good story. So whenever the stock market doesn't move their way, they come up with a myriad of excuses to explain the fall. The members of what my good friend Peter Grandich likes to call "The Don't Worry Be Happy Crowd" appear in the […]

    St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard
(Photo by Scott Eells/Getty Images)
  • Diversifying Investments in High-Volatility Markets

    I have been writing for several weeks now about my belief that we are in for an extended period of time of higher volatility than we have been accustomed to the last three years. If nothing else, the eventual tightening of monetary policy (vs. perpetual loosening) is bound to create elevated volatility levels relative to the quite compressed volatility that […]

    Diversifying Investments in High-Volatility Markets
  • Steve Forbes: ‘Great Countries Don’t Have Weak Currencies’

    Steve Forbes' new book Money: How the Destruction of the Dollar Threatens the Global Economy and What We Can Do About It recapitulates the old and true ideas at precisely the right moment, just as we’ve seen America’s easiest Fed policy correspond with America’s worst recovery and we’re actually learning from that experience. In an interview over Skype, I asked Mr. Forbes, […]

    Steve Forbes
  • The Boom-and-Bust Fed's Rental Society

    Now, as during World War II and up to 1951, the US Federal Reserve practiced what is now called quantitative easing (QE). Then, as now, nominal interest rates were low and the real ones negative: The Fed’s policy did not so much induce investments as it allowed the government to accumulate debts, and prevent default. Marriner Eccles, the Fed chairman during […]

    Marriner Eccles, former Chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve.
  • TSA Boondoggles: High Costs, Low Effectiveness, But It's Only Your Money

    Milton Friedman often observed that no one spends other people’s money as carefully as he spends his own.  You don’t need to be an economics professor to understand that – it’s simple human nature. Regulatory agencies provide an endless stream of examples to prove Friedman’s point. Let’s take a look at one of America’s least favorite agencies, the Transportation Security Administration. The […]

    Photo by Yoon S. Byun / The Boston Globe via Getty Images

More Commentary

St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard
(Photo by Scott Eells/Getty Images)

Ebola is the New Weather Excuse

The perennially-optimistic crowd on Wall Street never lets the truth get in the way of a good story. So whenever the stock market doesn't move their way, they come up with a myriad of excuses to explain the fall. The members of what my good friend Peter Grandich likes to call "The Don't Worry Be Happy Crowd" appear in the […]

Read more ›
Diversifying Investments in High-Volatility Markets

Diversifying Investments in High-Volatility Markets

I have been writing for several weeks now about my belief that we are in for an extended period of time of higher volatility than we have been accustomed to the last three years. If nothing else, the eventual tightening of monetary policy (vs. perpetual loosening) is bound to create elevated volatility levels relative to the quite compressed volatility that […]

Read more ›
Steve Forbes

Steve Forbes: ‘Great Countries Don’t Have Weak Currencies’

Steve Forbes' new book Money: How the Destruction of the Dollar Threatens the Global Economy and What We Can Do About It recapitulates the old and true ideas at precisely the right moment, just as we’ve seen America’s easiest Fed policy correspond with America’s worst recovery and we’re actually learning from that experience. In an interview over Skype, I asked Mr. Forbes, […]

Read more ›
Marriner Eccles, former Chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The Boom-and-Bust Fed's Rental Society

Now, as during World War II and up to 1951, the US Federal Reserve practiced what is now called quantitative easing (QE). Then, as now, nominal interest rates were low and the real ones negative: The Fed’s policy did not so much induce investments as it allowed the government to accumulate debts, and prevent default. Marriner Eccles, the Fed chairman during […]

Read more ›
Photo by Yoon S. Byun / The Boston Globe via Getty Images

TSA Boondoggles: High Costs, Low Effectiveness, But It's Only Your Money

Milton Friedman often observed that no one spends other people’s money as carefully as he spends his own.  You don’t need to be an economics professor to understand that – it’s simple human nature. Regulatory agencies provide an endless stream of examples to prove Friedman’s point. Let’s take a look at one of America’s least favorite agencies, the Transportation Security Administration. The […]

Read more ›
Trading on the Frankfurt stock exchange.
(Photo by Frank Rumpenhorst/DPA/Corbis)

The Underlying Causes of Last Week's (Exaggerated) Sell-Off

How bad can this sell-off get (Friday’s rally notwithstanding)? Let me answer it this way.  At this exact point three years ago the S&P 500 was coming off two months of (a) A United States Treasury Credit DOWNGRADE for the first time since Alexander Hamilton was Treasury Secretary; (b) The "up until midnight" threat of a full-blown government shutdown and […]

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John Williams, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
(Photo by Liz Hafalia, The Chronicle)

A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to Raising Rates

It wasn't too long ago that the stock market was busy celebrating a "great" September jobs report. There were 248k net new jobs created and the unemployment rate dropped to 5.9 percent. Janet Yellen, Ben Bernanke, and the rest of Washington D.C.'s central planners deemed it a great time to take a Keynesian victory lap, basking in the delusion that […]

Read more ›