Posts from Wednesday Oct 9 2013

The Closer


– A look at Janet Yellen’s researchRead more

Shorter FOMC minutes: this economy management stuff is hard

Questions about the US economy raised in the FOMC minutes to the September meeting (our paraphrasing):

— Is the drop in the demographics-adjusted labour force participation rate the result of structural or cyclical factors? Read more

Towards cashlessness, a brief update

A note from ConvergEx this morning considers the impressive seigniorage benefits to the US of the $100 bill, the annual production of which has spiked in recent years. But the C-note is unique for its use as an overseas store of value, including in conflict regions and for dodgy transactions.

We were more interested in what the note had to say about all the other kinds of physical bills, whose combined annual production fell to its lowest level since 1980 in the fiscal year that just ended: Read more

Are T-bills cash, or aren’t they?

This is what a real T-bill crisis looks like. Just so we’re clear.

 Read more

The wealth pyramid

From Credit Suisse’s newly-minted Global Wealth Report. Click to enlarge…

 Read more

The great diversification bait and switch

We’ve been looking recently at the false promises of a zombie hedge fund industry. Now let’s widen the lens a little to take in asset management more broadly, and the self-interested warping of a concept at the heart of investing.

Start with this terrific piece from Bloomberg, about how investors have been gulled by the supposedly respectable brokers of Wall Street selling investment products known as managed futures. Read more

Breaking the full faith and credit, vs breaking the buck

Just for the record, FT Alphaville thinks of ‘technical’ default as one of those weasel words.

Still, some interesting comment from Fitch on Wednesday, on whether defaulted US Treasuries could still call the $2.694trn money market fund industry a home: Read more

Markets Live: Wednesday, 9th October, 2013

Live markets commentary from 

The (early) Lunch Wrap


We’ve got a full Yellen nomination reading round-up — and on the debt ceiling front, David ponders those super-premium Treasury things. Dan sees trouble for big UK retailers. Read more

Beware the discounters, UK food watch

We know that one day UK high streets will be windswept vistas of pubs, charity shops and discount grocery stores, with the odd place to pick up your online purchases from Asos.

On the way to that utopian dream, however, a great deal of disruption lies. And Citi have spotted that for the likes of Tesco and Morrisons, it looms sooner rather than later. Read more

A super premium long shot

We’re a little late to this one but what the hell. Here’s an issue of super premium Treasuries maybe saving the day if the debt ceiling hits. Maybe. Read more

Further Yellen

On the Fed’s likely first chairwoman, on Wednesday:

Why I’m Very Happy About Janet Yellen – Justin Wolfers, Bloomberg

Why I’m Not Very Happy About Janet Yellen – Carol Roth, CNBC

Obama’s Nomination Of Janet Yellen Is A Blow To Recovery-Starved Americans – Forbes Read more

Further reading

Elsewhere on Wednesday,

Krugtron the Invincible, a Niall Ferguson fightback.

Trolling H2B.

– Public policy and wages.

– Living high… and eating weedsRead more

The 6am London Cut

Markets: Equity markets across Asia-Pacific were mixed as investors weighed the negative impact of a continued shutdown in Washington against the positive effect of the White House confirming its next pick to head up the Federal Reserve. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index was up 0.4 per cent and the Shanghai Composite was 0.2 per cent higher, but Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index suffered a 0.7 per cent decline. Markets in South Korea were closed for a public holiday. (Financial TimesRead more

Yellen! (But don’t forget the other slots…)

The WSJ reports Tuesday night that the White House plans to nominate Janet Yellen to replace Ben Bernanke as Fed chair on Wednesday. Robin Harding confirmed as much.

FT Alphaville welcomes the choice, but we’ve already written about her qualifications at length (see here and here). Read more