There is no doubt that Alan Greenspan has the ability to move markets. Even the slightest change in vernacular can bring about reactions that are… spectacular.
He attempts to hide his manipulative ways with fed jargon, saying “for a considerable period” one month then switching to “patient” the next, showing he’s as fickle as a blade of grass in a wind storm. Can he not just admit that economics and monetary policy are speculative endeavors, not a science and not a sure thing?
Those who predict and promise in the field of economics are also destined to step into the spotlight of failure. The Fed is losing respect faster than interest rates went down, post-bubble. Run to the light!
Really, what it comes down to is debt. Debt, debt, debt. No one talks about it, except those seeking election; certainly not those who already stand elected. It seems that the Cheney refrain, “It just doesn’t matter,” resounds, not just through the corridors of the White House but through the halls of the Federal Reserve building also.
You know from previous PROFIT CONFIDENTIAL e-mails that debt is somewhat of a major issue to us. The U.S. government is spending like a love sick sailor on shore leave and coming up a billion short every day (including Saturdays and Sundays). The Fed knows our shortcomings-dollars.
We can only print so many dollars before some mighty powerful foreign friends get really… how shall I say it, upset. And they have already shown they are losing interest in holding dollars. December’s two-year note sale was more than disappointing with indirect and foreign bidders taking up a meager 29% of notes.
Asian central banks have been major buyers of Treasuries… basically lending back dollars to the U.S. that they received from Americans for imported goods. This mitigates export-damaging gains in their own currencies. In addition, they want some interest payments. Recently, interest rates have been so low that yields are made more attractive by price discounts. Not a desirable trend if you’re the seller.
Greenspan’s hidden agenda is to keep the money coming in so that the spending can continue. Imagine if our benevolent Uncle Sam ran out of dough! Imagine if he ran out of dough in an election year. How could he create jobs? Stimulate growth? Keep the markets up… The whole show could come down like some cheap Vaudeville act. Ticket sales would plummet in the lone star state.
Who benefits from the suggestion that interest rates might move up sooner than we previously suggested? You and me? The average American? Certainly not. The people who benefit are the foreign and domestic lenders.
The Fed might just have to practice a little more juggling before taking the show From Vaudeville to Wall Street. It knows Americans are in debt up to their elbows.
Hmm. Perhaps I’ve been too harsh with Mr.Greenspan. Maybe instead of appeasing foreign lenders, he is actually sending out a warning. Take care of your debts today; they will cost you more tomorrow.