• Dismissing the Experts

    Regular readers know I often criticize so-called “experts,” usually economists or central bankers whose flawed decisions are punishing the rest of us. I find their expertise is not nearly as reliable as they seem to think. At the same time, I rely on experts whose judgment I respect. I know they aren’t perfect—usually because
  • Nose Blind to Inflation

    The human brain excels at taking shortcuts. Processing all the information our senses collect takes a lot of energy, so repetitive data gets lower priority. Things we see often fade into the background so we can notice new stuff. This is where we get phenomena like “nose blindness.” We stop perceiving familiar smells like our pets, perfume
  • Howard Marks on Expert Opinion

    In a week when I have once more gone out on the old limb, in last weekend’s Thoughts from the Frontline, to bring you my forecast for the new year, and when I’m also sharing with readers of my Over My Shoulder service the tea-leaf skryings of some of the boldest and brightest among my fellow economic prognosticators, I’m feeling a
  • Forecasting with Friends

    Rosenberg: Return to Disinflation Wood: Inflection Points & Border Taxes BCA: Looming Shifts Enough Forecasts DC, Florida, and the Caymans In some ways, I think it’s just entertainment. You might compare our prognosticating to what happens with NFL football. For weeks before the Super Bowl, we devoted fans will spend hours speculating on the
  • Negative Rates Nail Savers

    The Economy Is Rigged The Creature from Jekyll Island Let’s Slap a 50% Tax on Your 401(k)s and Retirement Plans What Will Happen from Here Denver, Dallas, Denver, and Back to Dallas “You shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold.” – William Jennings Bryan, July 9, 1896 “You shall not crucify the retiree and saver on
  • Weapons of Economic Misdirection

    Weapons of Economic Misdirection Hayek Versus Keynes GDP: A Brief But Affectionate History Will the Real GDP Please Stand Up? GDP Is a Political Construction Denver, Denver, Dallas, and Writing “Measurement theory shows that strong assumptions are required for certain statistics to provide meaningful information about reality. Measurement theory
  • The Globalization Disconnect

    There has been a monster debate going on in economic circles as we try to assess the reasons for Brexit/Trump/Sanders and the developed world’s rejection of the directions in which the establishment wants to take us. There are many explanations, which try to spin answers to fit the authors’ own economic or political views; but it all goes
  • World Gone Backwards

    Globalization on Its Head Low-Tech Boxes Big Ole Jet Airliner Energy Untanked Plastic Doodads Virtual Airports Alaskan Bananas Early in the Game NYC, Montana, Iceland … and a little question for you “The growth model China has relied on for the last 30 years – one predicated on low-cost exports to the rest of the world and investment
  • The Bond Market: Beware of Junkyard Dogs

    It should come as no surprise that credit spreads are shrinking between what in theory are risk-free investments and other investments. Retirees and other investors are reaching farther and farther for yield, piling into all sorts of increasingly risky investments. My friend Danielle DiMartino Booth, formerly at the Dallas Fed and now writing on her
  • When the Future Becomes Today

    When the Future Becomes Today Risky Trinity Addictive Behavior Mixed Debt Signals Is the Fed Shooting Blanks? Losing the Narrative Las Vegas, Maine, NYC, and Montana “There are decades where nothing happens, and there are weeks where decades happen.” – Vladimir Lenin “However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look
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