America Is Overdue For Another Economic Disaster

Tuesday, August 21, 2018
By Paul Martin

by George Will via NationalReview.com,
ZeroHedge.com
Tue, 08/21/2018

Underneath the current economic boom, there are some truly worrying signs…

Eric Sevareid (1912–1992), the author and broadcaster, said he was a pessimist about tomorrow but an optimist about the day after tomorrow. Regarding America’s economy, prudent people should reverse that.

This Wednesday, according to the Financial Times‘ Robin Wigglesworth and Nicole Bullock, “the U.S. stock market will officially have enjoyed its longest-ever bull run” — one that rises 20 percent from its low, until it drops 20 percent from its peak. And September 15 will be the tenth anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Bros., the fourth-largest U.S. investment bank. History’s largest bankruptcy filing presaged the October 2008 evaporation of almost $10 trillion in global market capitalization.

The durable market rise that began March 6, 2009, is as intoxicating as the Lehman anniversary should be sobering: Nothing lasts. Those who see no Lehman-like episode on the horizon did not see the last one.

Economists debate, inconclusively, this question: Do economic expansions die of old age (the current one began in June 2009) or are they slain by big events or bad policies? What is known is that all expansions end. God, a wit has warned, is going to come down and pull civilization over for speeding. When He, or something, decides that today’s expansion, currently in its 111th month (approaching twice the 58-month average length of post-1945 expansions), has gone on long enough, the contraction probably will begin with the annual budget deficit exceeding $1 trillion.

The president’s Office of Management and Budget – not that there really is a meaningful budget getting actual management – projects that the deficit for fiscal year 2019, which begins in six weeks, will be $1.085 trillion. This is while the economy is, according to the economic historian in the Oval Office, “as good as it’s ever been, ever.”

Leavening administration euphoria with facts, Yale’s Robert Shiller, writing in the New York Times, notes that since quarterly GDP enumeration began in 1947, there have been 101 quarters with growth at least equal to the 4.1 percent of this year’s second quarter. The fastest – 13.4 percent – was 1950’s fourth quarter, perhaps produced largely by bad news: The Cold War was on, the Korean War had begun in June, fear of the atomic bomb was rising (New York City installed its first air-raid siren in October), as was (consequently) a home-building boom outside cities and “scare buying” of products that might become scarce during World War III. Today, Shiller says, “it seems likely that people in many countries may be accelerating their purchases — of soybeans, steel, and many other commodities — fearing future government intervention in the form of a trade war.” And fearing the probable: higher interest rates.

The Rest…HERE

Comments are closed.

Join the revolution in 2018. Revolution Radio is 100% volunteer ran. Any contributions are greatly appreciated. God bless!

Follow us on Twitter