If Karl Denninger is correct, lead and gold are about the only worthwhile investments these days:
It will not be long ladies and gentlemen, when the bulk of the folks running the algorithms deduce that they’re exposed to the same risks – they have to post margin too, you know, and if it can be stolen then their capital isn’t safe either. These deposits aren’t supposed to be “at risk” when there’s no position actively open — that’s a performance bond against possible failure to pay, but is supposed to be exactly as safe as a bank deposit in a checking account under FDIC limits.
Well, it wasn’t. The CDS you bought on Greece wasn’t. And it will only take another event like this or two before people conclude that everything is unsound as the jackals running the game will redefine the meaning of words to suit themselves and, failing that will simply steal the money.
30+ years of lawless behavior has now devolved down to blatant, in-your-face theft. They don’t even bother trying to hide it any more, and Eric “Place” Holder is too busy supervising the running of guns into Mexico so the drug cartels can shoot both Mexican and American citizens.
What am I, or anyone else, supposed to do in this sort of “market” environment? Invest in…. what? Land titles are worthless as they’ve been corrupted by robosigning, margin deposits have been stolen, Madoff’s clients had confirmations of trades that never happend and proved to worthless pieces of paper instead of valuable securities and while Madoff went to prison nobody else has and the money is still gone!
Without enforcement of the law — swift and certain — there is no deterrent against this behavior.
There has been no enforcement and there is no indication that this will change.
It will take just one — or maybe two — more events like MF Global and Greek CDS “determinations” before the entire market — all of it — goes “no bid” as participants simply stuff their hands in their pockets and say “screw this.”
It’s coming folks, and I guarantee you this: Whatever your “nightmare” scenario is for such an event, it’s not bearish enough.
What concerns me most about all of this is that with a few minor exceptions, most of my economic predictions have been correct with regards to the trend and incorrect because they were too optimistic. Since my medium term predictions are fairly negative, although not catastrophic, you can understand that this pattern of being overly optimistic tends to concern me somewhat.
For example, I expected firms like MF Global to collapse. But I did not expect to hear that they had stolen over a billion dollars that their clients had on account with them. The fraud and the outright theft by the cancerous financial sector is clearly much worse than I, or nearly anyone, had imagined. The fact that Corzine could operate without the proper license, then steal over ONE BILLION DOLLARS without being questioned, much less arrested, will destroy more confidence than even the most heroic measures pushed by the Federal Reserve, the government, and the financial media can create.
Karl is sometimes accused, and not entirely unfairly, of having some chicken little tendencies. But when Chicken Little turns out to be overly optimistic in some regards, it would appear to be indicative of a fairly serious situation.