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Buttered Bread

Written By: - Date published: 11:20 am, February 6th, 2018 - 84 comments
Categories: capitalism, class war, Economy, International, the praiseworthy and the pitiful - Tags: , , ,

A New York Times headline exclaims “Stocks Fall as Sell-off Enters Second Week.

The Guardian screeches  “Dow Jones Suffers Worst Day in Over Six Years as Global Stock Markets Fall.”

The Washington Post gasps  “Dow closes down nearly 1,200 points after plunging more than 1,500 points in volatile trading”

And “Dow Jones hit by biggest single-day points drop ever”, wails The Independent

So, y’know, the sky’s falling in. And one ought to show appropriate concern. (Pictures accompanying mainstream reporting will point you in the right direction if it’s all a bit over your head.)

And one of the reasons posited for this calamitous event?

Well, in among all the arm waving and finger pointing we have this in the Guardian piece –

The plunge, initially triggered by fears that strong US employment numbers would lead to wage demands…

And this in the Washington Post piece –

Friday’s markets went tumbling on good economic news as the Labor Department reported a 2.9 percent increase in hourly earnings.

Capitalism. Gotta love it.

No. You’ve got to.

84 comments on “Buttered Bread”

  1. Incognito 1

    Given that the bots & algorithms that now dominate “real-time high-speed trading markets” were designed by humans I believe they have ‘inherited’ the human propensity for feeling fear 😉

  2. dv 2

    This is disgraceful.

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/feb/05/pressure-grows-on-dpd-and-theresa-may-after-courier-dies-of-diabetes

    Matthew Taylor said the government must urgently address poor quality work in Britain after the Guardian revealed how Don Lane, a 53-year-old father of one, collapsed and died from diabetes after being fined £150 by the courier company for attending a hospital appointment to treat his disease.

    Lane missed three other hospital appointments to treat kidney damage, partly because he was afraid of being fined. He collapsed at the wheel of his van while on deliveries a few months before dying in January.

  3. adam 3

    Business as usual.

    Smash workers, extract massive profit, greed is good. Look shiny new film to keep you happy and a shiny new leader.

    All praise to capitalism.

  4. One Two 4

    The explanations given for market swings became divorced from any semblance of logic around early 00’s…

    Watch a few of the tickers, it is as if someone or something is having a laugh while coming up with [any irrelevant statement]

    It doesn’t matter what rationale is used..the markets operate outside of human requirements…are mostly automated…and should be shut down…

  5. Pat 5

    “For the first three months, the QE unwind only removes about $10 billion a month, a negligible amount, given the vast markets and excess liquidity. But it picks up steam every three months. By October 2018, if the plan is still on, the QE unwind will remove $50 billion a month from the markets. This process will do the opposite of what QE had done: it will gradually destroy some of the $3.6 trillion that the Fed had created during QE. And by that time the broader effects of QE – asset price inflation – should also start to reverse.”

    http://www.businessinsider.com/fed-balance-sheet-normalization-is-happening-2017-12/?r=AU&IR=T

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-eurozone-economy-poll/ecb-to-end-qe-by-dec-but-should-do-so-sooner-economists-idUSKBN1F81TJ

  6. mauī 6

    One thing’s for sure they will do literally anything to save the market. Over $10+ trillion has been pushed into the system to keep it afloat since the last major crash in 2008.

  7. RedLogix 7

    Sorry … I don’t understand your question. I think my salary depends on it. /smirk

  8. SPC 8

    It’s the first market correction in over a year.

    And it only wiped out gains made in the January meltup, so called because there were doubts it would be sustainable and would probably lead to a correction.

    The initial reason for the correction was the doubling of US borrowing in preparation for the loss of revenue resulting from the announced tax cuts.

    It is a simple truism in the market that anything inflationary, leads to a move from investment in stocks towards cash assets.

  9. Stunned Mullet 9

    ‘Capitalism. Gotta love it.

    No. You’ve got to.’

    Meh replace it with any other ‘ism’ and you’ll still have winners and losers due to the fickle bums running the show.

  10. Jimmy Ramaka 10

    Love it, just waiting for the carnage, hopefully some Bankers will get jailed this time around, some how I doubt it !!!

    It will be Jacinda and Winston’s fault.

    • patricia bremner 10.1

      Jimmy!! Oh Rubbish!! This started with Ruth Richardson et al!!!! Douglas and Prebble followed by Bill Birch and those mongrels.

      Winston showed how the money go round worked with the “wine box” inquiry … rather like the Monseca crowd of recent times.

      Jacinda was about 7 years old!! So to blame them is bloody ridiculous!!

  11. Ed 11

    I have been posting on the Standard for a while saying that a major financial crisis is on its way.
    And the usual suspects have ridiculed me for saying that.
    Now it appears to have started.

    The Daily Blog is reporting the coming crash.

    https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2018/02/06/dow-jones-crashes-1175-points/

    Rachel Stewart speaks sense as ever on twitter.

    “Of course, the DOW *could* bounce back. And likely will. But it’s all a game built upon a rickety board. Propped up and malignant. It’s only a matter of time.”

    And this her comment on Bernard Hickey’s article.

    “Famous last words from Hickey. I know he’s an economist, but he and his ilk tend to miss things. Like the last GFC. ”

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2018/02/06/81386/why-the-waitangi-day-wipeout-is-no-new-gfc

  12. greg 12

    none of problems from the gfc were addressed we are in uncharted waters we have bubble everything and much higher debt than 2008.
    its frightening how this is going to unwind. i fear how new Zealand will be affected house holds have run up huge debts it cant be good our fire economy is just a house of cards how stupid is trading houses at ever increasing prices while racking up debt close to 170 percent of GDP. is this the start of the long awaited and predicted crash?????this is all nationals fault 9 years of incompetence and greed this is there legacy
    ps you may need a hard hat in queen street from bankers committing suicide

    • Ed 12.1

      Bomber Bradbury nails it.

      “The grim reality that the wealth creation built since the GFC in 2007/2008 is an illusion that can only survive on record low interest rates and insane Quantitate Easing is starting to sink in with the Dow Jones following up the 666 point loss on Friday with a horror 1175 point plunge today.

      The meltdown will hit NZ with higher interest rates on house properties people won’t be able to afford while they watch their Kiwisaver accounts get mashed.”

      • Chuck 12.1.1

        “Bomber Bradbury nails it.”

        Even a broken clock is correct twice a day comes to mind when you mention Bomber.

        As OAB mentions below someone/s would have made a shit load of money shortening the Dow (and other markets). George Soros took on the UK Exchequer and reportedly made a billion pounds betting against the pound, from memory in the early 1990’s.

        The US economy is in pretty good shape, stock valuations are out of control for sure. A correction is long overdue to more realistic levels.

        I agree with interest rates Ed when they do start to increase a couple of percents will put a lot of households on the edge. And one of the main drivers of the housing boom will cease. However, while demand outstrips supply… there will be a cushion.

    • Phil 12.2

      ps you may need a hard hat in queen street from bankers committing suicide

      I don’t think any of the big-4 banks have head offices on Queen Street any more…

  13. One Anonymous Bloke 13

    Perhaps this government will ask us to tighten our belts. If they do, don’t forget that the big end of town loves a bear market because of the acquisition opportunities it reveals.

    Those who are in a position to short the market just made a lot of cash. If anyone needs to take a haircut I suggest we start with them.

    • adam 13.1

      Well we could all just stop.

      Stop paying rent, stop going to work, stop buying stuff.

      That would be the best thing we could do if they ask us to tighten our belts.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1.1

        Boring. I’m not going to stop working, nor am I going to stop buying the supplies that enable my work. I don’t pay rent, and my mortgage payments are minimal.

        A house across the road from me is empty and has been for years. I’ll be enabling squatters before I take up any of your suggestions. In the event that this government tries to visit any putative consequences onto the most vulnerable, that is.

        I doubt this ‘market correction’ will result in anything other than acquisition opportunities for the big end of town, and if it does, there’ll be plenty of work to do, don’t worry.

      • greg 13.1.2

        new Zealand since 2008 growth was fund by credit growth in the house hold sector
        so in away you are right consumerism may well dry up. there isnrt much the government can do for a lot of people this will end up an own goal driven by greed to take on risks they could not afford.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1.2.1

          there isn’t much the government can do

          Of course there is. Emergencies warrant emergency powers.

          • Pat 13.1.2.1.1

            what do you suggest?

            • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1.2.1.1.1

              That the government uses te Tiriti and the UDoHR as guides when considering all legislative and executive responses.

              In this specific circumstance, what’s at stake? More homelessness? Some investors take a haircut? The response depends on the stakes.

              • Pat

                specifically…

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  You want a specific answer to an non-specific problem? If it’s any increase in homelessness I suggest the government requisition accommodation, starting with “ghost houses” in the short term, and then legislate for squatters’ rights.

                  • Pat

                    the specific scenario presented by greg was ..”there isnrt much the government can do for a lot of people this will end up an own goal driven by greed to take on risks they could not afford.”…to which you replied….”Of course there is. Emergencies warrant emergency powers.”

                    so what emergency powers do you think should be implemented?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Funny how you missed out the part where Pat said:

                      “there isn’t much the government can do”,

                      Now why would you do that, I wonder.

                      Pat proposes that the government can do noting for people who take on risks they cannot afford. In reality, the government does things for people in dire straits all the time. Every single day. So the premise is false, especially in the event of emergencies.

                      Is that clear enough for you? If not you’ll have to wait ’til tomorrow.

                  • Pat

                    lol…clear as mud…and Pat said none of that and i wont hold my breath in expectation of clarification

        • Nic the NZer 13.1.2.2

          Turns out your wrong by just the one government, growth in NZ has been funded on credit since closer to 2000, its far from just since 2008.
          https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/statistics/key-graphs/key-graph-household-debt

          Of course there is a lot the government can do, primarily running a deficit spending more and taxing less (which raises non-government income and therefore increases employment, government surplus does the reverse) being first and foremost. The government is always able to resolve or avoid a recession using it’s ability to deficit spend.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 13.1.2.2.1

            On what planet is taxing less the solution, given eg: Germany’s top tax rate?

            • Nic the NZer 13.1.2.2.1.1

              “On what planet is taxing less the solution”

              When the government wants more income to go to the non-government sector collecting less in tax is an option (another is spending more). That is just accounting of course.

              “Germany’s top tax rate?”

              Germany is a pretty poor example because it’s current position depends on a large persistent export surplus, and this aspect of its behavior is extremely disruptive causing elevated unemployment in other ‘partner’ Eurozone countries.
              It regularly refuses to spend more on somewhat run down infrastructure and the domestic population (many of who work in Hartz reform mini-jobs and therefore effectively work below the minimum wage). Given its going to keep refusing to do this spending (which would likely lead to higher domestic wages standards of living and lowering the export surplus) the German Government should collect less tax allowing the domestic population to keep more of their income to spend for themselves (e.g the government deficit should be larger in Germany than it is). This would improve the situation for both Germans and Eurozone partner countries and ease the significant political tensions in those countries.
              Though it would probably make the political narrative of, shining example Germany vs the lazy indigent southern periphery block countries, harder to support.

  14. Jackel 14

    The US stock market records it’s biggest fall ever. No one bats an eyelid. Capitalism gotta be a joke.

  15. Patty’s so concerned with the stock-market blues shes decided to go bush , – again.

    Bigfoot caught on tape (Patterson footage stabilized) – YouTube
    Video for patterson gimlin film clip you tube▶ 1:49

  16. Ad 16

    Even if there were a very, very hard crash of the global stock market,
    one that was big enough to see interest rates absolutely skyrocket,
    so high that we saw floating mortgage rates go up …

    … exactly what would change?

    – Headline unemployment is at 4.6% and falling
    – Demand for housing is still massive – and pushed by the state
    – Construction demand is still massive – and pushed by the state
    – Tourism demand is still massive – and the 1% always need entertaining
    – Broadly agricultural demand (including forestry, horticulture, wine, dairy, lamb, fish, etc) is still massive
    – Even manufacturing demand is high

    And it would take at least four of those to really dent the New Zealand economy sufficient to dent our society as a whole.

    It’s possible, in some future, be we are a long, long way from that possibility yet.

    • Nic the NZer 16.1

      “one that was big enough to see interest rates absolutely skyrocket”

      If the economy collapses central banks will reduce official interest rates, not increase them. That will no doubt flow onto floating mortgage rates pretty much immediately.

      • Ad 16.1.1

        I would hope you were right, but I remember 1987-89 pretty clearly when mortgage rates went to 18%, second mortgages were in the high 20% range, and all construction just stopped.

        A few things had to line up for that to happen.

        • Nic the NZer 16.1.1.1

          Well if the economy collapses and the reserve bank governor responds by raising interest rates then one thing is for certain, the governor will soon be looking for a new job.

    • Pat 16.2

      you seem to be unaware of the cause of the correction.

      • Ad 16.2.1

        They’re rarely causally related with predictable trends in the day to day economy.

        And even if some glorious soothsayer could make those calls consistently, it would not matter – unless all elements consistently fell in a specific sequence.

        Everybody just relax.

        • Pat 16.2.1.1

          lol…tell that to the mortgage holders

          • Ad 16.2.1.1.1

            Have you noticed some movement in interest rates overnight?

            Any bank warnings?

            Any central bank warnings from Federal Reserve or ECB?

            Anyone making runs on banks somewhere?

            Even some untoward exchange rate change that night at some point make money slightly more expensive?

            Just inhale for a bit.

            • Pat 16.2.1.1.1.1

              my breathings fine…youre reading ability for the past 12 months obviously hasnt been.

  17. Andre 17

    Bitcoin enthusiasts have gone oddly quiet lately, too.

    • Jack Ramaka 17.1

      Read that Banks are no longer allowing customers to buy Bitcoins on their credit cards ?

  18. eco maori 18

    Steve Adams is getting more MANA every time I read about him Many thanks to the reporters giving him what he deserves a excellent review. Kia kaha bro

    Adams now OKC’s ‘3rd best’

    https://i.stuff.co.nz/sport/basketball/101210090/steven-adams-receives-high-praise-ahead-of-okc-thunder-visit-to-golden-state Ka kite ano

    • Johan 18.1

      Steven Adams’ Oklahoma City Thunder run the Golden State Warriors off the floor.
      What an athlete!

  19. Zorb6 19

    I would be interested to see Hickey provide evidence of this-”American banks are also in a much stronger position. They are mostly out of trading complicated and often synthetic products in financial markets ‘.

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