Ben Bernanke is a dubious choice to be named “Person of the Year” by Time magazine. While Time’s Managing Editor Richard Stengel credits him with recognizing early and reacting appropriately to the ongoing financial crisis, in reality, he was wrong time and again with both his predictions and his remedies. Just remember these gems…
Posts Tagged ‘ Federal Reserve ’
Bill Bonner, daily columnist for The Daily Reckoning, UK Edition, turns his attention today to the latested antics of the U.S. Fed Chairman and the ten year rolling trends in the U.S. stock market.
By Andrew Snyder, TodaysFinancialNews.com
Baltimore — (TFN): It’s not an award I would want. First Putin, then Obama, now Bernanke. Big Ben is not joining the best of company with his “Person of the year” award. If history is an indication, the Fed boss’ approval rating will be significantly lower in the next twelve months.
As if being the master of the secret domain known as the Federal Reserve isn’t a hard enough job to handle, Time goes and slaps Bernanke on the cover and tells us the award is due not because of where Bernanke got us today, but because of where we have not ventured.
So what was it that spooked the markets… Well… The only thing I can find was the report yesterday about falling Housing Starts that Chris told you about… Did you know that about 14% of US homeowners were either delinquent on their mortgage or in some stage of foreclosure? That is the highest rate since the group started collecting the data in 1972!
But there was something else that was announced as the day went on, that I think probably spooked the markets more than anything else… And that is a key House panel approved two amendments to a sweeping financial-overhaul bill that would give federal watchdogs new authority to audit the Federal Reserve, and would establish a fund of as much as $200 billion to help dissolve large, troubled institutions. Rep. Ron Paul (R., Texas) offered the amendment seeking to subject the Fed to audits.
“In the old days … the Fed controlled the federal funds rate with open market operations,” Antulio Bomfim, a former Fed economist now with Macroeconomic Advisors LLC in Washington told Reuters. “Now, at least in this period when reserves are over-abundant, the way the Fed hopes to raise the federal funds rate will be primarily by raising the interest rate it pays on reserves.”
Chuck Butler (The Daily Reckoning):
What a ride yesterday for the currencies! Gold? Well, at one point gold had shot up $24 on the day! It topped out at $1,142… The shiny metal then gave some back on profit taking, but gold holders have got to love it! Those who keep waiting for a pullback. Well, they might still be waiting when the cows come home.
Keith Fitz-gerald (Whiskey & Gunpowder):
Everything we know about classic economic theory suggests the U.S. economy should be experiencing Zimbabwe-like hyperinflation right now, thanks to the nearly $2.2 trillion the U.S. Federal Reserve has pumped into the system.
Are you sold on gold? The precious metal outperformed every major equity index in the world in 2008. The question is, can gold—and other precious metals—keep on flying? Or would buying today be buying high and selling low?
Precious metals have always been intriguing to investors because they tend to hold their value. In times of geopolitical crisis or currency devaluation, for example, the value of paper money might fluctuate, but a hard asset will always be worth something. As a result, historically, precious metals have been considered a “safe haven” in times of economic and financial instability.
That brings us to why gold is on a tear today. It declined in 2008 and early 2009 as panicked investors rushed into cash…
Baltimore (TFN): The Fed is meeting today. And I ask who cares? At this point, Bernanke and his troupe of politicians masquerading as economists are in so far over their heads, no matter what they do or say, you can bet the move is designed to protect their butts, not yours.