Almost two years ago the US Treasury was selling large amounts of short-term Treasury bills to fund bailouts and stimulus. That caused a major increase in debt. Most of that paper was 2-year bills and it is coming due for rollover shortly. While that transpires, October will report the annual fiscal deficit of 9/30/10 of about $1.5 trillion, a figure thought impossible just 1-1/2 to 2 years ago.
This time around the Treasury will have to depend on the Fed and US banks and institutions to fund this mountain of paper. China has reduced its holdings of Treasury debt by about 6%, or by about $6 billion over ten months, or by about 10% or almost $100 billion over the past year or so. We know these figures are estimates because the Chinese government has the same trouble the US government has, it cannot discern truth from fiction.
Now that the effect of the first quantitative easing is behind us the economy is facing a hangover even with zero interest rates and a 2.42% ten-year T-note. It was just months ago that those rates were close to 4%. The sale of Treasuries for the past six months was easy with a strong US dollar caused by a manufactured crisis in Greece and in the euro.
As we look back we can see almost the whole picture. We saw major NYC banks going very long the dollar and short the euro beginning in late October of last year. At the time we couldn’t figure out what they were up too, but it became apparent this past March.
The contrived attack on Greece and the euro was to allow the Treasury to fund its debt and to make the banks, which own the Fed, a fortune. 100 to 1 leverage is a lock when you have inside information and are creating the crisis.
Except for Greece, Euro Zone members numbers welcomed the 17% fall in the euro vs. the dollar, because their exports were cheaper and more price competitive. What is there not to like about that? As a result the bond vigilantes went into hiding, because they were afraid to go head to head with the Treasury and the Fed. This wasn’t the old days when these entities did not rig the markets. This was today, when they rig every market 24/7, under the Executive Order that created “The President’s Working Group on Financial Markets.” This is a page out of the national Socialist handbook of Germany in the 1930s. Government and markets by regulation known as corporatist fascism aided by collectivist Keynesian economics. The result has been 17 months of net financial inflows, part of which was aided by the Fed in their secret offshore operations. It is no wonder they do not want to be audited and investigated. Now we are back to square one again. We announced two months ago that QE2 was on the way, but as usual few were listening. Monetization is the name of the game.
Quantitative easing will put the American public at ease, at least temporarily. They do not realize it but the American and world economies are in a deliberate state of slow collapse. Yes, the Fed has created a terrible mess. They have been totally unprofessional and reckless. The result has been, even after five quarters, averaging 3-1/4% growth, sales of new and used homes are dismal with no hope in sight for improvement, unemployment just under its highs, record debt, slight wage increases, lost purchasing power due to inflation and few prospects for improvement. Inventory is all in place, so that can no longer be a plus.
What the Fed has been approaching since June is a “liquidity trap.” That is when loans are offered to business and they refuse to borrow. They stop using credit because they question the future of the economy, their government and the specter of new taxes in the future. Money and credit is available, but few want to assume the risks to borrow.
Between stimulus and federal government hiring there has been nothing sustainable about the economy. It’s on federal life support with assistance from the Fed.
This market is the exact opposite of the gold and silver markets, which are in an 11-year bull market. The metals separated from the dollar 15 months ago and they have already won the battle of the world’s only real currency. Gold has gained 15% a year for those last 7 years. This is a secular bull market and cannot be denied. Further, gold has appreciated annually against every currency.