Hope all goes well… “I have not considered or discussed anything having to do with blanket insurance or guarantees of all deposits,” answered Janet Yellen, when asked on Wednesday whether Treasury would circumvent Congress to insure all deposits. Naturally, this accelerated the bank run, as rational economic actors moved their money. “Certainly, we would be prepared to take additional actions if warranted,” said Yell
Anecdote: In my early years, captivated by Ayn Rand, I thought often of John Galt’s engine. It converted ambient atmospheric energy into electricity. Atlas Shrugged is fiction, and Galt’s engine is a metaphor of course. But I came to see that our highest purpose is in converting static electricity into motive energy. I think about that often. In a world filled with noise, distraction, waste, those who can convert cha
Anecdote: “They went big last weekend, which was the right thing to do,” said the Chairman, a veteran of financial crises, the two of us discussing the ongoing bank run, how policy can end it. “But the market always tests statements of confidence, whether from companies or the government,” he continued. “This week, at the first real test, policymakers mumbled.” Treasury Secretary Yellen’s responses to Senator Lankfor
Hope all goes well… “The overuse of the term moral hazard is distracting at best,” said the Chairman, no stranger to leading the nation though financial crises. “And at worst, it will lead to bad policy,” he said. “Moral hazard is when you knowingly take a risk in the expectation that if it goes wrong, others will bear the consequences,” he explained. “In this case, depositors were unaware of the risks, and never exp
Anecdote: “Be on the bid when they’re selling. And be the offer when they’re buying.” That’s what they taught us as young pit traders in Chicago. “Don’t have an opinion, those cost you a fortune.” But most of us did anyway. “Know where the orders are, lean on them.” We’d scramble to accumulate long positions just above a big buy order, confident we could sell into that order and get flat, losing little or nothing. An
Hope all goes well… “Closed-door meetings have been going on all day in DC,” said the CIO Saturday night. “They’re calling it the billionaire’s bank,” he said. “If this were 2008, there would be no question a deal would get done, but it’s 2023 and the optics are very different,” he said. “Something will get done before the market opens Monday morning. JP Morgan, Goldman, Morgan Stanley, Citi, someone takes this over.
Anecdote: “When I’ve studied historical inflations they’re almost always caused by a combination of complacency and a focus on the nominal at the expense of real,” said Lindsay Politi, the two of us on the trading floor, our early morning chat. “After a long period of stability, inflation starts to surprise on the upside.” Initially there’s disbelief. Policy makers assume it’s temporary, wait for more data. But while
Hope all goes well… For those who dodged the news on Friday, Coinbase acquired our digital asset subsidiary, One River Digital Asset Management. It’s an outstanding outcome and an incredible opportunity for us all, following a wild two-year ride on a journey that has only just begun. For my summary of how and why it all happened [click here]. Now back to work… Overall: “That is money that cannot be spent elsewhere,”