The Japanese currency is now trading around a 2-1/2 year low against the dollar at around 90 yen, as the market remained focused on Japan’s pursuit of a reflationary economic policy.
Talk about a currency war has dominated discussions at the Swiss ski resort of Davos this week, with many central bankers and business executives questioning the wisdom of continuing an easy money policy.
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s unprecedented bond buying pushed the Fed’s balance sheet to a record $3 trillion as he shows no sign of softening his effort to bring down 7.8 percent unemployment.
The Fed is purchasing $85 billion of securities every month, using the full force of its balance sheet to stoke the economic recovery. The central bank began $40 billion in monthly purchases of mortgage-backed securities in September and added $45 billion in Treasury securities to that pace this month.
“We’re in uncharted territory,” said Julia Coronado, chief economist for North America at BNP Paribas SA in New York, and a former Fed economist. Even as “the easy money will flow through financial markets and into the real economy at some point and lift us to a better growth trajectory,” the U.S. faces “a lot of risks,” she said.
This past week, America’s premier financial comedy channel, which lately specializes in such “epic financial journalism” as the real billionaire hedge husbands of New York (because sagging Nielsen ratings are always a direct corollary of central market planning) wasted no time in advising its few remaining viewers that the market, which soared past 1,500, has now regained levels last seen before the start of the recession in December 2007. Sadly, this is the only thing that has been regained. Below we present some things that have not been regained since the last time the S&P 500 was at 1500.
First, as the chart below shows, the S&P is indeed above 1500 for the first time since December 2007.
Unfortunately for the economy, which has ceased to correlate to the stock market courtesy of the Federal Reserve, the stock market and the underlying fundementals, in this case jobs, are now completely independent. The chart below shows that while the stock market may be at its pre-recession levels, the employment situation has only managed to recoup half the total lost jobs, and with 4 million jobs still to go before all the jobs lost are recovered, it is very likely that not even by the end of Obama’s second term will the economy have regained all the lost jobs since December 2007.
Who is it? Here is the answer:
China and Japan, the second and third largest economies in the world, are for the first time in history trading their currencies directly. Previously they were forced to first convert to dollars. Russia is striking similar agreements with trade partners. China. The trend is clear. It may take 10 years, or 30, but the end of the dollar as the world’s reserve currency seems inevitable.
US banks shaken by biggest deposit withdrawals since 9/11
US Federal Reserve is reporting a major deposit withdrawal from the nation’s bank accounts. The financial system hasn’t seen such a massive fund outflow since 9/11 attacks.
The first week of January 2013 has seen $114 billion withdrawn from 25 of the US’ biggest banks, pushing deposits down to $5.37 trillion, according to the US Fed. Financial analysts suggest it could be down to the Transaction Account Guarantee insurance program coming to an end on December 31 last year and clients moving their money that is no longer insured by the government.
The program was introduced in the wake of the 2008 crisis in order to support the banking system. It provided insurance for around $1.5 trillion in non-interest-bearing accounts with a limit of $250,000. It was aimed at medium and small banks as the creators of the program believed bigger banks would cope with the crisis themselves.
Mystery: $114 billion withdrawn from banks
More than $114 billion has been withdrawn from the nation’s biggest banks in the first full week of January, and industry analysts are struggling to understand why.
In a fractional reserve banking system this $114 billion is actually worth $1.4 Trillion.
Flashback: Electronic Run On the Banks
This guy explains how fragile this ponzi scheme actually is.
This is a front run excuse for them to print more money because for every dollar withdrawn it lowers their balance sheet reserves buy 30 or more dollars.
Fractional Reserve Banking
The table below displays the relending model of how loans are funded and how the money supply is affected. It also shows how central bank money is used to create commercial bank money from an initial deposit of $100 of central bank money. In the example, the initial deposit is lent out 10 times with a fractional-reserve rate of 20% to ultimately create $500 of commercial bank money (it is important to note that the 20% reserve rate used here is for ease of illustration, actual reserve requirements are usually a lot lower, for example around 3% in the USA and UK). Each successive bank involved in this process creates new commercial bank money on a diminishing portion of the original deposit of central bank money. This is because banks only lend out a portion of the central bank money deposited, in order to fulfill reserve requirements and to ensure that they always have enough reserves on hand to meet normal transaction demands.