Posts Tagged ‘Don Kohn’

Notes From Underground: As Yogi Berra Would Say, “It’s Déjà Vu All Over Again”

June 26, 2015

In quoting the great Yogi Berra, the reference could be the daily algo-driven headlines of the Greek drama. It could also be the issue of a data-dependent Fed and will rates be raised in 2015. Or it’s some very successful and knowledgeable investor bloviating about the correct valuation for the stock market.

While all these issues have been filling the pages and airwaves of the financial media, what I am primarily referring to is  a speech given by former Governor Donald Kohn at Widener University in April 2004. Titled, “Monetary Policy and Imbalances,” it is a speech that Chair Yellen OUGHT to present to all current FOMC voters. I will list several points that Fed Governor Kohn raised in 2004, warning of the ill-effects of  the FED maintaining interest rates at an ultra low level of 1 percent for too long.


Notes From Underground: The Roar From Yellen Quieted the Bloviators

February 11, 2014

The talking heads of financial visual media tried to create a circus around the new Fed Chair Yellen’s first official Congressional testimony. Yellen proved a worthy animal trainer and backed critics and supporters to their corners as she delivered very measured and COGENT responses to her inquisitors. The media was hoping for “red meat” but the Fed chair served up a vegetarian casserole full of nutritional value but nothing for the perpetrators of pabulum to sensationalize. It seems as though Yellen watched tape of Mario Draghi for she knew which Congressional posers needed long, drawn out answers so as devour their allowed five minutes of time. Well done Madam Chairman. This testimony of the Fed Chair, as mandated by Congress, has become about as relevant as the G-7 photo-op. If Congress has questions, put them in writing and establish a record of correspondence and thus a trail of responsibility to satisfy the dual mandate. It was reported that the House Republicans on the Finance Committee was to going to have a second hearing post Yellen’s testimony  in which four invited guests would provide a rebuttal of the policy put forth by Yellen.


Notes From Underground: Back From Vacation and Was Subjected To the Government Shutdown

October 7, 2013

As I drove along the Blue Ridge Parkway many of the Federally manned information spots and federally run conveniences were closed. But it did not detract from the grandeur of the Carolina mountains and majestic valleys. The Parkway itself was an allegory for the markets as it winds it way a forest of trees with danger all along the way. It is best to stop at the lookouts along the way as an astute trader/investor would take the time to analyze charts to see where the road leads. The present standoff in Washington has brought profits to the SHORTS, but as Friday’s rally revealed. This market is fraught with danger for bulls and bears alike. More important than the shutdown of some federal government operations is the looming issue of the DEBT CEILING. Many analysts have rightfully pointed out that the government defaulted in 1979 and although Treasury bill yields rose 60 basis points, the overall effect was minimal. Beware of faulty historical correlations.


Notes From Underground: When Spanish Bonds are smiling, Bernanke visits Frankfurt in search of clues

November 18, 2010

The Spanish government sold $2.5 billion (€3.65) 10-YEAR NOTES at auction and Dr.Pangloss said it went well, as the average yield was 4.615 percent. Finance Minister Elena Salgado said she saw “absolutely no reason” to compare Spain’s situation with that of Ireland or Portugal. Well Madam Finance Minister, all is not well as you have 20 percent unemployment and an exploding deficit as tax revenues implode and expenditures increase. Spanish DEBT is yielding 210 basis points more than Germany. The Spanish economy is struggling and German growth is buoyant, and yet, Spain is paying more for long-term financing, there is definitely a problem. The Irish situation remained in limbo as EUROPEAN demands are being met with resistance by the politicians of the Emerald Isle. Deputy  Prime Minister Mary Coughlan said the Irish corporate tax rate was “non-negotiable.”


Notes From Underground: The European “CRISIS,” a study in political economy

November 17, 2010

As readers of NOTES FROM UNDERGROUND are well aware, this blog takes over from where the econometricians and model builders fear to tread. Case in point: The current Irish DEBT problem. All of the number crunchers are straining over whether the Irish Banks or the government is the biggest problem and if it’s a solvency or liquidity issue. Neither!


Notes From Underground: This week’s main events-elections, FOMC, unemployment

November 1, 2010

The slew of U.S. data has been a mixed result. The personal spending and earnings number were both soft, while the PMI manufacturing number was better than anticipated. Equity markets shrugged off the weaker data as the market closed higher, although far off the early highs in the S&Ps and even traded lower late in the day.