Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Take Your Money and Run

Frederick J. Sheehan is the author of Panderer to Power: The Untold Story of How Alan Greenspan Enriched Wall Street and Left a Legacy of Recession  (McGraw-Hill, 2009) and "The Coming Collapse of the Municipal Bond Market" (, 2009)

            It is a wonder of the times that, in matters of money, such trust endures when those in whom it is invested work so hard to demonstrate they will squander or confiscate it. Both money and trust. At the very least, the mandarins have made no attempt to hide their inability to think and act beyond today's headlines. Every day is writ anew, with complete ignorance of previous decrees and assurances.

"Why Cyprus Is a Special Case" - March 25, 2013, Bloomberg

Cyprus 'Bail-In' Not a Special Case After All - March 25, 2013, ITV News:  "If we want to have a healthy, sound financial sector, the only way is to say, 'Look, there where you take on the risks, you must deal with them, and if you can't deal with them, then you shouldn't have taken them on.'" - Dutch Finance Minister, Jeroen Dijsselbloem.


ECB Repeats That Cyprus is a Special Case to No Effect. - March 26, 2013, City A.M: "The European Central Bank's Ewald Nowotny has repeated that Cyprus is a special case, but markets aren't paying attention. The euro remains stubbornly low."


"Merkel Says Greece is Special Case" - January 9, 2012, Reuters: "We have said time and again that Greece is a special case...."


"Ireland is a Special Case" - German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny - October 21, 2012

"Portugal's Problems: The Next Special Case?" Renewed optimism about the euro zone has passed Portugal by - Feb 4, 2012, The Economist

"Cyprus Was a Very Special Case, Everyone Knew That. And We Found the Right Solution." - March 28, 2013, Wolfgang Schaeuble, German Finance Minister

"German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble Has Said Savings Accounts in the Eurozone are Safe." - March 30, 2013, Reuters

"Germany Remains A Special Case"-December 13, 2012 - Der Spiegel

OH, NO!:


"Britain is a somewhat special case" -Paul Krugman, New York Times - March 29, 2013

"So the question is whether Japan is a special case" - Paul Krugman, New York Times, February, 24, 2013

            The March 2013 edition of the Edelweiss Journal includes an essay by Dylan Grice in which he sorts through the confusion of this untethered world. The obvious locus is central bankers and their "crackpot monetary ideas." After quoting from Richard Cantillon's timeless essay on those closest to new money seeing their purchasing power rise the most, he notes those who pay are "furthest away from the newly created money." Today, the money created by crackpot monetary ideas is inflation, in assets, goods, and accumulating beliefs. Grice's investment quest is to find scarcity: "But the scarce substance we prize above all is trustworthiness. Aware that we worry too much in a world growing more wary and distrustful, it is here we place an increasing premium, here that we seek refuge from financial folly and here that we expect the next bull market."