10/4/2012 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…
There is much confusion amongst economists regarding the effects of the various programs which are currently being run by the largest of the Western Central Banking cartels known as Quantitative easing, better known by its keystroke saving acronym, QE.
For the uninitiated, QE involves the Central Bank issuing currency in exchange for government debt and all other manner of otherwise worthless financial assets provided to it by the banking class. In the best of cases, it provides liquidity for what would be a temporary hiccup in an otherwise healthy economy. In the worst of cases, which most who have taken a sober look at the financial industry would agree we are in, it serves as a backstop for financial asset prices, placing an artificial floor under the price of what passes as collateral in the financial system.
In any case, the Central Bank agrees to swap the wine of its currency for the sewage on bank balance sheets. As anyone who has put this theory to the test will tell you, if you add a teaspoon of wine to barrel full of sewage, you get sewage, while if you add a teaspoon of sewage to a barrel full of wine, you get…sewage.
Following this analogy, the existence of QE means that the currency of all of the Western world is now sewage.
While the pure, hard money Austrian school analyst sees it as a prelude to a hyperinflationary event, the Keynesian sees it as a necessary evil. At this point, there is no real argument that QE, by definition, is inflationary. However, the perverted feedback loop between the Central banks’ issuance of currency, the Governments’ issuance of debt, and the banking sector serving as an increasingly weak middleman, has managed to keep a large portion of the freshly created currency parked in either the Treasury or at the Central Bank in the form of excess bank reserves.
As the logic of the Central Bank goes, once the storm blows over, the stars will align and all of the sewage will turn back into wine. The currency created as a part of QE will simply disappear, as it never really left the FED anyway.
Simple logic, right? You can almost cut the naivety with a knife. The fact is that the freshly minted currency is here to stay. As long as the Governments, Central banks, and banking cartel exist in their present form, none of them can afford for even a cent of the sewage they have created to disappear. It is there for the long haul. All the average man or woman can hope for is that the sewage doesn’t spill off of their balance sheets or work its way to the water supply of the real economy.
All of this is old hat to fiat currency hounds and bond vigilantes. The dangerous new twist which is just now in its infancy is the application of quantum theory to the mix.
Here, we must turn to the razor sharp intellect of Mr. Walayat, whose analysis over at The Market Oracle is on the cutting edge and generally spot on.
Walayat, along with Lee Adler of the Wall Street Examiner, are amongst the handful of analysts with a true understanding of the banking system and the motives and logical consequences of the actions of the Central banking cartel.
As the currency event in Iran unfolds, those of us in the “secure” West would do well to read up on what awaits as the Western Central banks throw their inflationary machines into overdrive, what Walayat refers to as “The Quantum of Quantitative Easing, or the keystroke saver: QQE.”
The operation of QQE is simple and predictable, yet unnecessarily mind-boggling.
As in a standard QE operation, it begins with the Government issuing debt which is purchased by members of the banking cartel in exchange for currency, which it then spends on any number of pet projects. The Central Bank then buys the Government debt from the banks and receives the interest which is paid by the Government. The Banks park the currency they have received from the Central Bank at the Central Bank and earn interest on it.
QQE ensues when the Central Bank then returns to the Government the difference between the interest paid by the Government on its own debt and the interest paid out to the Banks to keep them afloat. As the Central Bank will never take a nominal loss on their debt holdings, and the Government will never default as long as QE remains in place, The Government is not borrowing at the implied interest rate that it auctions its debt at, rather, it is effectively borrowing at the rate that the banks earn on their reserves deposited at the Central bank, less the cost of the Central Bank’s operations!
Is your head spinning yet? Stay with us, it gets better. The longer that the policy of QE continues (and it will continue until the currencies of the world blow up, as the Iranian Rial is in the process of doing,) the Government is effectively swapping out its old debt, issued 30 years ago at anywhere between 11 and 14%, for new debt at an effective rate of 0.25%! Those interest savings on the rollover are the rocket fuel of QQE. They are what will allow the Governments to both ramp up spending and reduce the relative size of their balance sheet.
By the way, those “savings” come at the expense of every person and organization which holds the currency as a savings vehicle.
In order to gain a fuller understanding of just what is going on, read the articles linked in the above paragraphs at your leisure. They will help to make sense of what is occurring as we begin to see the paradox of increased government spending and reduced or stable levels of national debt.
Oh yes, and double digit real inflation rates, despite the irrelevant claims of the BLS propaganda machine. Plan accordingly, this is not a drill.
Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.
Key Indicators for October 4, 2012
Copper Price per Lb: $3.77
Oil Price per Barrel: $91.45
Corn Price per Bushel: $7.57
10 Yr US Treasury Bond: 1.67%
FED Target Rate: 0.16% ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!
Gold Price Per Ounce: $1,790 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY
MINT Perceived Target Rate*: 0.25%
Unemployment Rate: 8.1%
Inflation Rate (CPI): 0.6%
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 13,575
M1 Monetary Base: $2,355,800,000,000
M2 Monetary Base: $10,070,300,000,000