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The ECB’s bond-buying programme – “a grave menace to our civilisation”?

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The European Central Bank has announced a programme of bond-buying of €60 billion a month, to be carried out at least until end-Sept 2016. Monetary policy around the world remains in the midst of a remarkable experiment: money creation is expected sustainably to solve real economic problems. It is possible that there is something dangerously wrong with mainstream economic thought. Hayek’s conclusion to The Pure Theory of Capital is a spectacular rant against those economists who consider only the short-run, surface […]

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The central banks have backed their economies into a corner

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Yesterday, the US Federal Reserve decided not to reduce its money creation programme of $85 billion a month. The Cobden Centre publishes a response, No tapering, no surprise: It was not too surprising that there is going to be no tapering for some very good reasons. The commencement of tapering would have led deliberately to bond yields rising, triggered by an increase in sales of government bonds to the public and at the same time escalating sales by foreign governments as […]

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The injustice of easy money is going mainstream

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The Daily Mail reports Interest rates: How keeping them at a record low is a deliberate government ploy to pay off its debts: A stealth raid by the Bank of England has stripped savers of more than £170billion, a Money Mail investigation can reveal. By slashing the base rate to a record low of 0.5?per cent and allowing the cost of living to soar for more than four years, the Bank has whittled away the value of cash sitting in High […]

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Mark Carney’s grand experiment began today » The Cobden Centre

An article for The Cobden Centre following my World at One appearance: The essence of what the Bank has announced is well known: they have begun using forward guidance to anchor both inflation and interest rate expectations as a cover for more active monetary policy. This will usher in a new age of monetary Kremlinology. Read more via Mark Carney’s grand experiment began today » The Cobden Centre.

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The madness of contemporary economists

The Bank of England is considering negative interest rates to “stimulate” the economy, together with more QE. It’s one thing to pay a bank for safe-keeping and other services, another for the central bank to manipulate the credit markets as a whole. It is explicitly a policy of expropriating savers, of which there is much to be said on another occasion. Allister Heath provides sensible comment here. What the Bank of England is trying to do is restart the money creation process […]

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Good and bad economic news

Today, we learn, Europe’s leaders are poised this morning to cut the European Union’s budget for the first time in its 56 year history following a major victory for David Cameron. Great news and congratulations to the Prime Minister and the negotiating team. Let’s hope MEPs don’t block it. On the other hand, In his first public appearance in the UK, Mark Carney, the current Governor of the Bank of Canada, said Britain might benefit from a commitment to keep […]

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Leverage and the Bank of England

In his speech yesterday, potential Governor of the Bank of England Paul Tucker discussed moral hazard, agency problems, short-termism and the “manifestly false” assumptions of risk models. I almost feel prophetic. He also said: When credit markets become overly exuberant, not only do the balance sheets of lenders become stretched, cheap credit leads borrowers to become over indebted, raising the probability of default. When defaults eventually pick up, a general awakening occurs, triggering mass deleveraging. So close to the monetary […]

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LearnLiberty.org: Should we End the Fed?

Another excellent video from LearnLiberty.org, in which Lawrence White concludes it would be dangerous to leave the control of money with the same institutions which caused the present crisis, hoping they will do better in future: What would it mean to “End the Fed?” Free banking expert and professor Lawrence White begins his answer by explaining the functions of the central bank of the United States, also known as the Federal Reserve or just “the Fed.” As the hub of […]

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Inflation jumps unexpectedly? Surprise?

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Via the Telegraph: The Office for National Statistics said its consumer prices index (CPI) measure of inflation rose to 2.6pc in July from 2.4pc in June, driven by a 21.7pc rise in the cost of flights which saw overall transport prices rise by 1pc. And via ToryOutcast: “UK inflation jumps unexpectedly in July”. Oh yes, completely unexpected that…http://bit.ly/Pgdp1H  (@SteveBakerMP) Good to know that my reader isn’t surprised by inflation. A pity that the people who manage the money supply are.

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For The Spectator Coffee House – Why tolerate central banking?

“Did you encourage them to make up the made up thing to their own advantage?” That’s how one Twitter correspondent paraphrased a question to the Deputy Governor of the Bank.  The LIBOR scandal has exposed the institutions and culture of the City to popular scrutiny as never before.  The population is reacting with justified incredulity to the absurdity it is finding. Read the rest of my article here.

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