Armstrong Economics Blog/Central Banks Re-Posted Jan 11, 2023 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Marty, I was there at your Berlin conference when one of the attendees openly admitted he was from the Bundesbank. He was very open about it. There have been other central bankers at your WEC. I suppose they have to attend just to get a whiff of the trend. Powell has come out and asserted the Fed’s independence and it will not make policy based on climate change. That was very refreshing. The bulk of analysts still cry about the creation of money at the Fed are insisting that a recession is coming because when the Fed stops printing, we will see a correction worse than 2008. Some call this a confetti party. Many claims to be fed watchers, but have never stepped inside their door. Meeting the people I have at your WEC events, you are always in the center and I can see it is not your opinion but Socrates that they want to listen to for an unbiased view. So will there be a huge correction when this party is over or have the fed watches been talking sophistry with no real insight?
PS: What about a Dubai WEC because the world imposes vaccine passports?
ANSWER: I know, This is the typical myopic domestic view that the Fed is in a very dangerous situation and a wrong move in any direction could cause a financial system meltdown worse than 2008. The argument is that since we have a debt-based monetary system if the Fed stops increasing the money supply this will lead to an economic withdrawal process that will be worse than 2008-2009. Once more, this is only looking at the domestic economy. They live with blinders on and do not see the world around us with respect to the globalization policies that are all in chaos.
Even at Davos in 2003, Alejandro Toledo, then President of Peru, urged the participants to listen to the voices of those protesting outside and to build a bridge with the participants of the Porto Alegre anti-globalization conference. “We must give a human face to the global economy and globalization,” he said. “Managing the economy is not an end in itself, but a means to improve the quality of life. Globalization is meaningless if it does not contribute to reducing poverty all over the world. “ Schwab preaches equality but at the price of Authoritarianism and the loss of individual rights.
The Fed is not between a rock and a hard place domestically. It just made it clear that it is not like the ECB and is not in the climate change business. The Fed is INDEPENDENT and will not be bullied by Biden. The Fed understands that it has become the world’s central bank and its actions in raising rates have had a far greater impact externally particularly in emerging markets because so many other nations issue their debt in US dollars.
The focus is not entirely on the nonsense of the domestic number of the money supply. If a foreigner buys property in the United States, they convert their currency to dollars, and in effect that increases the domestic money supply for that capital now free up cash domestically. The Fed has no control over that aspect and central banks have become aware of this effect which is not taught in economics class and not factored into the doomsday forecasts all based on the same reasoning forever.
All the analysis is constantly based on the Quantity Theory of Money which no longer works in our global economy. That was the foundation of the money theory that emerged with Sir Tomas Greshan who was the agent for the British crown. He saw that when Henry VIII debased the coinage, the value declined in Amsterdam when the exchange rate was solely based upon the metal content of the currency.
All we have ever heard is that the Fed has the power to create money out of thin air. They never explain why the Fed was given that power. You cannot have a fixed money supply as the population increases, then you end up with DEFLATION which is the rise in the value of money. They are married to the argument and nothing you can do will deter them from that saying. During the Great Depression, people hoard their money and do not spend it. That was why the ECB went to negative to try to force people to spend money. You can DOUBLE the money supply but if the people hoard it, you will never create inflation.
Because people hoard their cash, there was a huge contraction in the velocity of money. This resulted in massive shortages and it led to over 200 cities issuing their own money to try to enable a local economy to still function for there was not enough cash to even pay anyone for services.
INFLATION is actually the decline in the purchasing power of the currency as measured against assets. DEFLATION is the rise in the value of money and the decline in the value of assets. The way the term “inflation” is handled today, the government puts the blame on the private sector. During DEFLATION we are blamed for not spending our money.
All this talk about bail-ins and bail-outs misses the point. They act as if they in the end really matter. HYPERINFLATION will never arrive based on increasing the money supply. It arrives with the collapse of CONFIDENCE in the government. Germany imposed a forced loan and confiscated 10% of everyone’s assets in December 1922. Germany lost the war and in 1918 there was a Communist Revolution that led to the creation of the Weimar Republic. The money supply increased 10 fold during 1922 when they were struggling to meet the reparation payments. That undermined the confidence in the government. But it was December 1922 when they confiscated Note that the hyperinflation took off in 1923 after that forced loan. It was no longer safe to have assets in banks.
This idea that we are headed into so black hole all because the Fed creates money is insane. That misinformation that the German Hyperinflation was all because of printing money was totally absurd and a lie. Once the government stole 10% of everyone’s assets, that was the final straw. They then had to print just to try to cover costs and meet reparation payments.
The Lesson of Germany is seriously distorted and has inflected the view of money supply and inflation which ignores the actions of the government. That is the real issue.