Daily Reckoning

Recent Posts

  • “How Far Will You Lower Yourself?”

    “How Far Will You Lower Yourself?”

    This post “How Far Will You Lower Yourself?” appeared first on Daily Reckoning. Yesterday’s reckoning about mask-wearing drew a heavy — and spirited — reader response. The bulk of it denounced us viciously. We are with the devil, readers insisted. For we are dispensing falsehoods — and possibly condemning the witless dupes who heed our evil counsel to early, needless graves. And if not condemning our witless dupes to early, needless graves… possibly condemning their elder and compromised relations to early, needless graves. Reader Greg D., for example, catalogues our trespasses in grim detail. 1) Every doctor and medical professional wears (masks). I would hazard to say there has been a few studies confirming the needs for masks for the last 80 or so years with a modern understanding of infectious transmission. Great to see you are feeding the already biased and ignorant who will never read to the bottom of the article. 2) The primary purpose of wearing a mask is to not infect others. Even back in March the effectiveness of protecting yourself with a mask was in question. Loop back to point #1 and medical professionals not making a sick patient worse. 3) Social distancing is the …Read More »
  • The Shocking Truth About Facemasks

    The Shocking Truth About Facemasks

    This post The Shocking Truth About Facemasks appeared first on Daily Reckoning. THE coronavirus menaces yet. Maybe you believe a face shield is your sword, a colossal weapon against the microscopic barbarians at your gate. Our agents inform us you can purchase a face shield for perhaps $10. But let us suppose you perch upon the upper rungs of America’s social ladder. Let us further suppose you wish to be seen upon this ladder, high aloft… all beneath looking up in heart-eating envy. Well then, we have the personal protection equipment for you… The Price of Vanity A Louis Vuitton face shield you can have for $961 — some $950 above standard. Is this viral barrier $950 superior to the plebian plastic that shields the lower 99%? Our men have conducted a thorough scientific inquiry — in studies singly blind, doubly blind and triply blind. As a barrier, they conclude, Louis Vuitton’s face shield is the precise equal of the socially inferior issue. Yet the socially inferior issue does not bear the razzle-dazzle of Louis Vuitton. “We are all in this together,” we are told. Yet even together… apparently… some insist upon standing apart. Vanity, Louis Vuitton is thy name. …Read More »
  • This Is How Long the Bubble Will Last

    This Is How Long the Bubble Will Last

    This post This Is How Long the Bubble Will Last appeared first on Daily Reckoning. THE underlying economy (U.S. and global) has a strong deflationary bias. Central banks can’t tolerate deflation, so they respond with inflationary measures such as money printing, zero rates and guarantees of all major securities markets. Those policies won’t actually cause inflation, for reasons explained below. But, they will cause bubbles in certain asset classes, especially stocks. There’s a serious question as to whether the central bank “inflationary measures” will actually work. They won’t. Powell can talk all he wants about asymmetric inflation targeting and letting the economy run a little “hot” for longer than expected, as he did in his Jackson Hole speech on August 27, but he doesn’t actually know how to make inflation happen. As I’ve stated repeatedly, money printing alone doesn’t cause inflation without velocity. And right now velocity is dropping sharply, as it has since 1998. Nobody Understands Inflation! Libertarians, Austrian School economists, Monetarists and Neo-Keynesians all got it wrong. They yelled that Fed “money printing” would lead straight to inflation. What they missed is that money printing does not cause inflation. It’s velocity (the turnover of money) that causes inflation. …Read More »
  • Goodbye, Baltimore

    Goodbye, Baltimore

    This post Goodbye, Baltimore appeared first on Daily Reckoning. JIM RICKARDS writes of the desperate hordes fleeing America’s virus-haunted, riot-haunted and crime-haunted cities: The combination of a pandemic lockdown, mass unemployment and riots in the streets is the last straw for many urban residents. They are getting out as fast as they can… Professionals, young families and retirees are all fleeing the major cities and moving to suburbs or even further out in the country. They are finding good schools, lower taxes and good internet connections where they can keep their jobs without dealing with the riots and murders that are the new norm in many major urban areas. Your editor has joined the exodus, the mass migration… and largely for the reasons listed. He has quit the clamorous city of Baltimore — seven years his home — and winged off to the tranquil municipality of Annapolis. It is perhaps 30 miles distant. Thus our byline will henceforth read Annapolis, Maryland. A Change of Pace We are near enough to Baltimore in the unfortunate event that our office reels us in — yet distant enough to escape Baltimore’s appalling gravity. No longer are we menaced by violence downtown, midtown, uptown, …Read More »
  • What Happened to American Labor?

    What Happened to American Labor?

    This post What Happened to American Labor? appeared first on Daily Reckoning. THE United States Bureau of Labor Statistics informs us that American productivity has increased 70% since 1973. But average real hourly pay (adjusted for inflation, that is) has scarcely increased 12% over 45 years. 45 years! Thus the average American worker finds himself a hamster upon a wheel… jogging largely in place. Here our co-founder Bill Bonner reduces to concrete the abstract plight of the American worker: In 1971, you could buy a new Ford F-150 for $2,500. At $4 an hour, it took 625 hours to buy the truck. Today’s model costs $30,000, and the average hourly wage is $26. So the wage earner has to work for 1,154 hours to get a standard F-150. Put another way, he has to sell almost twice as much of his time to get a set of wheels. But it is not only the F-150 owner who has lost the value of his dearest commodity — time: You can do the same calculation for housing. An average man paid about $24,000 for the average house in 1971. Today, he pays $371,000. Priced in time, the house cost 6,000 hours in …Read More »