Monday, March 03, 2014
Financial Sarcasm Roundup for 03/03/14
Global tensions shall not deter me from being sarcastic about finance. Conflicts aren't funny but the foibles of the finance sector provide comic relief.
The European Banking Authority is just now waking up to the risks of digital currencies. Welcome to the party. It took the Mt. Gox bankruptcy to alert regulators in the largest economies. They should have paid attention since at least 2009 when it Bitcoin was obviously becoming a disruptive phenomenon in finance. Now it's too late for the hapless suckers who used Mt. Gox to change real money into fake money. It's not too late for "investors" in other non-coins once regulators decide that crypto-coins aren't real currencies. The difference after regulation is that crypto-nerds will have to live with the reporting and taxation requirements they thought they could escape. Techno-idiots can't get any dumber! They should go back to playing video games.
US GDP growth is getting another downward revision. Those of you who follow Shadow Government Statistics, like me, would not be surprised. Investors who do not understand the extent to which statisticians adjust official economic results deserve to get smacked upside the head really hard. I'd be happy to smack them but I'll let the markets do my dirty work for me. Market analysts react with a yawn because they know the numbers are gamed and that the slow US recovery is driven by exceptional forces - monetary stimulus, share buybacks, and other steroid effects. These forces are unsustainable. Analysts can't get any dumber! They should go back to goofing off during office hours.
One ECB board member is waking up to the risk in sovereign debt. It's too bad no one will listen. The phantom recovery in some parts of Europe tempts big banks to underwrite more government bond issues. Refusing to hold excess capital against these increasingly risky assets exposes European banks to destruction. The ECB's stress tests were designed to ignore sovereign credit risks. European bankers can't get any dumber! They should go back to drinking espresso, or whatever European folks drink these days.
European bankers should underwrite a Bitcoin-denominated sovereign debt issue that analysts could rate without even understanding it. Such a development would provide me with the ultimate basis for sarcasm. Lots of stupid people would lose money, but those idiots are losing money anyway betting on those constituencies separately. Rolling them all together into a big nonsensical blob just makes sense.