Featured Post

Learn Economics

Learn economics. Topics in Economics can give even the newbie insights into how the economies of the world work with a focus on China and the USA. There are 30 topics listed with articles on those subjects, as well as a glossary of terms.
I have written a lot of vetted articles that are exclusive** to Talkmarkets. Sorting a portion of them by subject will give the reader an opportunity to make sense of it all. I am adding a glossary of terms at the bottom of this page.

For readers interested in economic subjects of the day, these top 30 themes are my efforts to make understanding economics easier.

Please keep in mind that many economic and moral decisions change as we approach the zero lower bound for interest rates. As bonds go negative, things change. That which was a moral duty when rates are 5 percent, like say lowering to 4 percent to stimulate the economy, don't work when we approach zero. 

If anything, the closer to zero that we go, the less lending and less banking stability…

Caterpillar Confirms Kalecki's Historical Truth About the Business Cycle

This article was first published by me on Talkmarkets:

Caterpillar's CEO, Jim Umpleby has told investors that there will be no new plants constructed even though orders have tripled for the company. From this Reuters article we see that:

Years of watching Caterpillar and other big manufacturers cut inventories, close plants and axe workers in the last downturn has embedded caution in Kirsh’s ambition to expand after the surge in orders, reflecting a more fundamental shift in how many industrial businesses view expansions, according to interviews with Caterpillar executives, more than a half-dozen Caterpillar suppliers and U.S. economic data.
“I just wasn’t sure it was real,” said Kirsh, speaking from a windowless office at the front of Kirsh Foundry Inc., in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, which makes metal parts for Caterpillar and other customers.
Even wit…

Trump Gives Russia Amazing Leverage over Oil Market

This article was first published by me on Talkmarkets:

Donald Trump has given Russia's increased leverage over the world oil market. His policies towards Iran and Venezuela are putting output at risk. Iran will benefit greatly from higher oil prices as they ramp down production. As the chart below shows, Russia is not producing more oil either. But the oil being produced is becoming ever more valuable.

Donald Trump has put the trade war on hold as it pertains to China. But Russia, the EU and Japan are still making trade war noise since Trump not only raised tariffs on Russian steel, but also on Japan, an ally of the United States. So, we have the uncomfortable reality that China gets a break and Japan, an ally, does not.

Russia has power not only to impose tariffs, but also the power to reduce oil production. With the China/Russia oil deal likely falling…

The Waymo Tesla Self Driving Con

This article was first published by me on Talkmarkets:

The Waymo Self Driving Con is gearing up. This is my strong opinion, but it appears to be backed up by fact. For example, Waymo CEO John Krafcik is not telling the truth when he said at a web summit in Lisbon:
Fully self-driving cars are here. Even Tesla has on its website as of the time of this writing:

All Tesla vehicles produced in our factory, including Model 3, have the hardware needed for full self-driving capability at a safety level substantially greater than that of a human driver.  But the truth is, these Teslas do not have fully self-driving capability. Recently one crashed into a fully stopped large vehicle after failing to brake. It was going 60 miles per hour. This is not indicative of full capability as a self driving vehicle! In my view, Krafcik and Elon Musk are behaving like confidence men ie. con men, in making cl…

Fed's Andolfatto, Powell, and the Secret Goal of the Fed

This article was first published by me on Talkmarkets:

Before discussing Andolfatto, it is perhaps important for people to understand that labor power, unions, shortages, demands for wage increases, are weak following a major credit incident like the Great Recession. But as labor becomes more bold, perhaps one day, it will seek greater pay and power over procuring pay.

However, it does not seem like that behavior is at all imminent. That behavior has existed in the past. But as labor had power in the 50's and 60's, that power is now gone. In fact, labor is very, very weak. That plays against the Fed's desire to keep the Phillips curve in play as discussed below. Following the discussion of Andolfatto, we need to take a look at Ellen Brown's recent article, because it explains much, but not all of Fed behavior. Lastly, we can take a look at the statu…

Donald Trump Was Elected by Farmers and They Are Worried

This article was first published by me on Talkmarkets:

Ginseng farmers in the red state of Wisconsin voted for Donald Trump. And they did so knowing their entire crop of cool ginseng is shipped to China! Tariffs are potentially in place for larger crops like Soybeans, as the trade war escalates, but ginseng is included.

That ginseng, a desired cool ginseng superior to the Canadian version, is being targeted shows me that China is very meticulous in potentially decimating the Trump base. Jim Schumacher, a ginseng farmer, made this incredible statement, and a similar one is being made by Wall Street:

"Maybe [people just didn't hear it], and maybe they didn't expect it to go this far. A lot of the things said on the campaign trail were more threats and things like that, I would think, and you just don't expect it to materialize, probably. So it…

Peter G. Peterson Turned Entitlement Into a Bad Word

This article was published to my personal Talkmarkets blog and is my opinion only, but I think you will find it interesting:

Peter G. Peterson recently passed away at the age of 91. He was lauded for his philanthropy, for his willingness to bring right and left into the foundation containing his name, that he generously funded, and for his thoughtfulness. But the truth is, Pete Peterson forever split and damaged America by making entitlement a bad word.

Pete Peterson is everything that Americans should fear from those who attended the University of Chicago, where he received his MBA. From Leo Strauss onward to Paul Wolfowitz, the university has produced some real villains. Peterson fits the mold, but was cunning in his ability to look centrist. As Leo Strauss, father of the neocons, who taught at the university, once said, keep the form of democrac…

Trump Fail; Tourism Declines in USA

This article was first published by me on Talkmarkets. Note tourism has bounced back some if you look at the updated chart, but it is no longer a growth industry because of Trump's offending the rest of the world, while it is a growth industry elsewhere:

Tourism has declined significantly over the course of the first year of the Donald Trump presidency. #Trumpfail is a hashtag that can be clearly applied to both tourism arrivals and tourism revenues.

World travel is growing at a pace of 3.5 to 4.5 per year. But US tourism declined in 2017. Tourism is considered a export, and while Trump says increasing exports is central to his policy, tourism is declining. While the United States does not strongly rely on foreign tourism, our nation relies on it significantly.

A series of charts illustrate what is going on in the United States and the world, as it pertains to tourism: