Showing posts from August, 2010

Frank-Dodd: public markets for derivatives

So, see here for a modern explanation of why OTC (over the counter) derivatives are a bad idea (tm).

It is taking for ever to unwind the mess of derivative contracts within Lehman (remember?). So FD regulation does offer a standardized platform that is measured.

That would clearly enable a quick unwind of positions in the case of bankruptcy. And that is a good thing.

Quantitative Easing round 1.5

There is a lot of talk and angst about QE lately. There is a long thread over at naked capitalism where I actually participate. See here. The gist is:

“QE will weaken the Fed’s balance sheet, and undermine confidence in the institution.”

QE in 08/09 has been applied. Basically the FED prints money and buys stuff. Note that this is no different from how the modern banking system works. Banks create money out of thin air (that is the money multiplier) and PEOPLE buy stuff with it. Market centric wisdom says that markets will allocate that money to the most productive use. SO let the banks create money, lend it and let the people make the smart decisions.

Problem is that lately the people have been buying mc-mansions, HDTVs and sports cars. And here we have a clear example where "markets" just fall flat on their faces. I hate to say this, but it was better when Reagan was spending money on defense or Obama was spending money on healthcare. Sometimes the people are just hedo…