Friday , January 17 2020
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Mike Norman

Mike Norman

Mike Norman is an economist and veteran trader whose career has spanned over 30 years on Wall Street. He is a former member and trader on the CME, NYMEX, COMEX and NYFE and he managed money for one of the largest hedge funds and ran a prop trading desk for Credit Suisse.

Articles by Mike Norman

There Was No Housing Bubble and Everyone Agrees We Have to Crack Down On China’s Practices on Intellectual Property — Dean Baker

1 day ago

Okay, at the risk of not getting included in the happy consensus, I will make a few points here.
My thoughts exactly. Tackling China is just plain crazy, especially when the US was benefitting in real terms of trade and China was still willing to save in USD. Those days are nearly over for the US and hopefully the newly rising China will overlook a century or so of humiliation, including the latest episode.

As Dean Baker points out, intellectual property has become a bug rather than a feature, and technology sharing is a a good idea for everyone — in a sane world.

Moreover, practically speaking, the Chinese economy is already larger the US figured on the basis of PPP, which is what counts economically rather than the absolute size of nominal GDP without deconstruction, as Dean Baker

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The GRI country-by-country reporting standard is launched today and other accounting standards setters should be taking note — Richard Murphy

1 day ago

As the FT reported a couple of days ago when discussing corporation tax and corporate accountability:
Now the Global Reporting Initiative, a not-for-profit setter of sustainability standards, is seeking to enhance transparency in this area. In a new standard it is calling for improved disclosure of corporate tax strategy, explanation of the reasons why the tax charge in financial accounts falls short of statutory headline tax rates, and country-by-country reporting of business activities, revenues, profits and tax.

Tax Research UKThe GRI country-by-country reporting standard is launched today and other accounting standards setters should be taking noteRichard Murphy | Professor of Practice in International Political Economy at City University, London; Director of Tax Research UK;

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Bill Mitchell — Racial prejudice in Britain rises with unemployment

1 day ago

When I was a relatively junior academic, one of the things I was interested in was how labour market prejudice is influenced by the state of the economic cycle. This was a period when Australia was undergoing a deep recession (early 1990s) and it was clear that hostility to immigrants had risen during this period. I was interested to see whether this was related. The interest goes back to my postgraduate days when I was studying labour economics and we considered labour market discrimination in some detail. Then, it was clear from the literature, that employers who used racial profiling to screen job candidates would lose out if the labour market was strong, but could indulge their negative views about different racial groups without loss in times of recession. But we didn’t do much work

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Professor Iain Stewart Climate Wars

1 day ago

In this video Prof Ian Stewart explains how the fossil fuel companies managed to dupe some of the public into believing that climate change is not a problem, or is even occurring. They learnt the trick from the cigarette and pharmaceutical companies.First of all, back in the 60’s, scientists started warning about climate change and politicians took it seriously. The fossil fuel companies got concerned about it, though, but many economists accepted the theory, but added that the increased carbon would be good for plants and so food harvests would be increased. They said this would be good for the agricultural business, even though they were not scientists, or understand anything about the climate. So you had scientists on one side and economists on the other arguing about what was good for

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All Roads lead to Russia

1 day ago

Trump deranged Dems back on the whole "Russia!" thing again…Is it Putin or Plutin…I cannot keep it straight…😂 https://t.co/3D1xzYwl2f— Tony Shaffer (@T_S_P_O_O_K_Y) January 16, 2020

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2019 capped off the world’s hottest decade in recorded history

2 days ago

It also marked the second-warmest year ever. “What happens in the future is really up to us," said one scientist.

I’ve got one wheel on my wagonAnd I’m still rolling alongThe Climate Deniers are after meI’m all in flamesAt the reinsBut I’m singing a happy song! 

The past decade was the hottest ever recorded on the planet, driven by an acceleration of temperature increases in the past five years, according to new data released Wednesday by the U.S. government.

The findings, released jointly by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), detail a troubling trajectory: 2019 was the second-hottest year on record, trailing only 2016. The past five years each rank among the five hottest since record-keeping began. And 19 of the hottest 20 years have

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Links — 15 Jan 2020

2 days ago

ABC News (Australia) (ah, the irony)Iran and the US are now trading barbs on China’s Weibo amid censorship on other platforms
Alan Weedon and Kai FengEconForecastThe EIA Is Grossly Overestimating U.S. Shale
Dian L. Chu

Anti-Empire“Tariff Man” Is Presiding Over the Biggest Contraction in US Manufacturing in 10 Years
Frank E. Holmes

Mish Talk — Money Maven (will Trump go after Airbus?)Orders at Boeing Drop to a 16-Year Low
Michael "Mish" Shedlock

Fort Russ News (Putin’s move to liberalize by switching from a presidential to a parliamentary form of government)BREAKING: Russian Prime Minister Resigns – Medvedev steps down
Joaquin Flores

Reminiscence of the Future (beware of the "experts" spinning this)Putin’s Address.
Andrei MartyanovIrrussianalityGoverning Russia (scale)Paul Robinson |

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The Inflation Measurement Scam — John Hellevig

2 days ago

In a recent report, we revealed the outrageously widening income and wealth gap and sinking standards of living in the United States. In reality, the situation with income and wealth inequality and stagnating wages could be yet much worse, because there are obvious problems with the official inflation figures, which are designed by the government to understate actual prices increases. To start with the inflation measure employed by the Federal Reserve (CPI) is a broad average purporting to reflect prices increases for all consumer goods and services. 

Herein lies the initial problem as the consumption habits of Americans are so different. Some of the products whose prices have risen less or decreased tend to be those that have a bigger weight in the purchases of the rich, whereas prices

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John V. Walsh – China, Number One Economic Power for Half Decade

2 days ago

Ignorance or Denial by the U.S. Poses Grave Dangers

John Walsh says China threatens no one, and the West is making a grave mistake by turning it into an enemy. 

The recent China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai attracted little attention in the Western press but it is one more reminder that China is an economic and trading powerhouse that has surpassed the US. That is right, the word is “surpassed.” The CIIE also serves to remind us that China’s economic power now stands on four mighty pillars.

Americans must understand this clearly, for ultimately all power grows out of economic power, including military power. A confrontational approach to China is therefore extremely dangerous in many ways, and it is being urged on us by almost all of the ruling Elite. The

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Michael Hudson — Note to China

2 days ago

How not be to taken over by the Empire. Although Michael Hudson doesn’t mention in this post, this is a goal of the trade war as well as the economic war that the US is waging worldwide to cement permanent US global hegemony.Michael Hudson — On Finance, Real Estate And The Powers Of NeoliberalismNote to China
Michael Hudson | President of The Institute for the Study of Long-Term Economic Trends (ISLET), a Wall Street Financial Analyst, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, and Guest Professor at Peking University

See also
IMMR CoffeeHouse Discussion Forum # 8Full Transcript (EDITED VERSION)Thurs. Dec. 19, 2019

Michael Hudson on how debt money has pushed the US and European economies to their financial limit. Followed by an open

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Links — 14 Jan 2020 — Part 2

2 days ago

Middle East Eye (non-starter)UK’s Boris Johnson suggests swapping Iran nuclear deal for ‘Trump deal’

People’s Dispatch (that would be opposition legislators, not "regime" legislators)US issues unilateral coercive measures against Venezuelan legislators
Venezuelanalysis 

US Sanctions Venezuela’s New Parliament Leader, Senior Opposition Lawmakers
Lucas Koerner

The Vineyard of the SakerThe West Will Try Again to Blow Up Russia From Within – Year Results
Ruslan Ostashko
Translated by Sasha

Sputnik InternationalJapan to Pass on US-led Coalition in Middle East, Adhere to Diplomacy — Defence MinisterThe American Conservative (can’t say we were’t warned)Ike’s Military-Industrial Complex, Six Decades Later

James Pinkerton

PopularResistance (imperial occupying force) 

The US Is Bringing

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Bill Mitchell – The German government celebrates its record surplus while infrastructure collapses

2 days ago

Wednesday blog post – so only a few snippets including some discussion about Germany’s latest extreme outcome – a record fiscal surplus, which the Ministry of Finance is claiming is responsible. Judged by the fact that the economy has ground to a halt and there is a massive infrastructure deficit in the country as a result of a systematic starving of capital expenditure by the government, one has to ask: are they joking! The surplus was, in part, the result of the German government not spending allocated public investment funds because there are insufficient skilled public servants on tap to manage the projects. So the government has hacked into skilled employment first, then it finds that there are not enough qualified officials left to oversee essential projects. So capital formation

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The Monetary Monopoly Model — Brian Romanchuk

2 days ago

What I refer to as the Monetary Monopoly Model is the simplest possible mathematical model that captures basic concepts from Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). Despite its simplicity, it gives a good feeling of how a sovereign could pin down the value of a brand new currency (relative to existing currencies, or the value of real goods or services). However, the model makes almost no assumptions about private sector behaviour, and such assumptions would be needed to simulate an existing industrial capitalist society. The reason to start with this model is that the discussion of those behavioural assumptions will drown out the MMT-specific parts of the model.

The model is based on the model presented by Pavlina R. Tcherneva, in "Monopoly Money: The State as a Price Setter."* Tcherneva’s

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KV Tweet – Still arguing with the climate change deniers

3 days ago

The deniers were telling me that the sea level in New York Harbour hasn’t risen, so climate change is not happening. So I put out lots of scientific articles saying that it was. They seem to have some contrary data but didn’t present it. After I put out all my articles, a denier tweeted –
Now climate hoaxers would have you believe that water levels are different in different parts of the world.  OMG how can anybody take you seriously?

Here’s my reply, which is an excerpt from a scientific article in the link below –
Different parts of the globe exert a different gravitational pull on the ocean, meaning that sea level is lower than expected in some places – represented by blue patches – and higher than expected in others – the red and yellow areas.

The deniers are still saying I don’t

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LInks — 14 Jan 2020 — Part 1

3 days ago

Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science (important in that Pinker is a public intellectual)Steven Pinker on torture
Andrew Gelman | Professor of Statistics and Political Science and Director of the Applied Statistics Center, Columbia UniversityBill Totten’s Weblog (I am old enough to remember this)Why does China not make quality products like Japan and Korea do?Answered by John Ohkuma Thiel on August 21 2017

EPI (capital flows were expenses are least and the labor bill is generally the chief variable cost)China trade deal will not restore 3.7 million U.S. jobs lost since China entered the WTO in 2001
Robert E. Scott

War on the Rocks (more profits for the MIC)
Battle Of The Bastions

James Lacey

Anti-Empire (desperation)Please Stop With the Idiotic Nonsense That

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Michael Roberts Blog: blogging from a marxist economist — Minsky and socialism

3 days ago

Minsky’s journey from socialism to stability for capitalist profitability comes about because he and the post-Keynesians deny and/or ignore Marx’s law of value, just as the ‘market socialists’, Lange and Lerner, did. The post-Keynesians and MMTers deny/ignore that profit comes from surplus value extracted by exploitation in the capitalist production process and it is this that is the driving force for investment and employment. They ignore the origin and role of profit, except as a residual of investment and consumer spending.Instead they all have a money fetish. With the money fetish, money replaces value, rather than representing it. They all see money (finance) as both causing crises and, also as solving them by creating value!

In my view, far from Minsky providing the “necessary

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Are Taiwanese Brainwashed to hate mainland China?

3 days ago

Part 1. This series looks interesting.
During my wonderful trip to the island of Taiwan, or the Republic of China, I decided to put some youtube "work" in well because I might never return. I spend one day of my trip wandering around looking for people to talk to. This Part 1 video shows a very long conversation I had with a University couple. They were super nice and agreed to the interview.

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James Ellsmoor – United States Spend Ten Times More On Fossil Fuel Subsidies Than Education

4 days ago

A new International Monetary Fund (IMF) study shows that USD$5.2 trillion was spent globally on fossil fuel subsidies in 2017. The equivalent of over 6.5% of global GDP of that year, it also represented a half-trillion dollar increase since 2015 when China ($1.4 trillion), the United States ($649 billion) and Russia ($551 billion) were the largest subsidizers
Forbes
James Ellsmoor – United States Spend Ten Times More On Fossil Fuel Subsidies Than Education

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David Bauder – Did Fox’s Tucker Carlson play role in calming Iran pressure?

4 days ago

Tucker Carlson again!Trump, who announced his decision not to retaliate against Iran’s missile strikes in a nationally televised address 14 hours later, told some close to him that he watched Carlson’s show, according to BuzzFeed News. He told confidants in recent days that Carlson’s strong advocacy not to escalate the situation in Iran played a role in his decision-making, two White House officials and Republicans close to the West Wing told The Associated Press on Thursday.
AP
David Bauder – Did Fox’s Tucker Carlson play role in calming Iran pressure?

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Links — 13 Jan 2020

4 days ago

Sputnik International ("our oil")‘The Only Troops I Have are Taking the Oil’: Watch Trump Double Down on Pledge to Steal Syria’s Oil

Zero Hedge (well, maybe "rents" rather than "sells")"He Sells Troops" – Amash Blasts Trump’s Boast That Saudis Paying $1BN For Protection
Tyler DurdenThe Vineyard of the Saker (he needs help?)Tulsi Gabbard – Trump disgraces our military
The SakerAnti-War (duh)Pompeo: Killing Soleimani Part of a ‘Broader Strategy’ Applying to China, RussiaJason Ditz

The Guardian (marching on the world)Pompeo says killing of Suleimani is part of ‘bigger strategy’ to deter US foes

Breitbart (The US declared the Republican Guards of which Soleimani was head a terrorist organization. Iran just declared the US military that assassinated Soleimani a terrorist organization.)

AG

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Bill Mitchell — The Tories in Britain have a clear way forward – thanks to the Labour Party hacks

4 days ago

How things are changing. After the British election in December, the policy terrain in the UK has shifted such that the Tories are now being lectured to about the dangers of a stimulus package, while British Labour seems to be promoting leadership candidates that mostly were part of the problem that led to their failure. In the latter context, we are seeing King or, should I say Queen makers, who I would have thought were unelectable trying to influence the leadership choice. And former Labour advisors tweeting and what have you about what Labour should be doing when it was their advice that got the Party into the mess it is currently in. Meanwhile, the Tories have an almost open field to finish the first stage of the Brexit process off, and, secure the ongoing support of the voters that

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In Future Wars, the U.S. Military Will Have Nowhere to Hide

4 days ago

New technologies enable Russia and China to destroy U.S. bases and logistics networks—including those on the homeland.

New technologies enable Russia and China to destroy U.S. bases and logistics networks—including those on the homeland.or most of its history, the United States has had the luxury of fighting its wars from safe havens. No major international battles have taken place on the continental United States in more than two centuries, and its offshore territory has not suffered a serious attack since Japan bombed Pearl Harbor in World War II. For the past few decades, even U.S. bases on foreign soil have faced few conventional military threats.
FP

In Future Wars, the U.S. Military Will Have Nowhere to Hide

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U.S. Banks Are Terrified of Chinese Payment Apps

4 days ago

If mobile payment apps became as popular in the U.S. as they are in China, banks would lose a projected $43 billion in revenue annually. Bloomberg QuickTake explains how cheap and easy payments by phone are threatening one of the banking industry’s most profitable businesses.

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“America Exists Today to Make War” — Lawrence Wilkerson on Endless War & American Empire

4 days ago

Retired U.S. Army Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, who served as Secretary of State Colin Powell’s chief of staff from 2002 to 2005, says the escalation of tensions between the U.S. and Iran today is a continuation of two decades of U.S. policy disasters in the Middle East, starting with the 2003 run-up to war with Iraq under the Bush administration. “America exists today to make war. How else do we interpret 19 straight years of war and no end in sight? It’s part of who we are. It’s part of what the American Empire is,” says Wilkerson. “We are going to cheat and steal to do whatever it is we have to do to continue this war complex. That’s the truth of it. And that’s the agony of it.”
Endless war is a key feature of the national economic model, the goose that lays the golden egg.(Video only,

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IMF boss says raise taxes on the rich to tackle inequality— Larry Elliott

4 days ago

Kristalina Georgieva, the IMF’s managing director, said higher marginal tax rates for the better off were needed as part of a policy rethink to tackle inequality.

In a sign of how the IMF has moved away from the tax-cutting approach that once formed a central part of its policy advice, Georgieva said there needed to be a different approach to tackling what had become “one of the most complex and vexing challenges in the global economy”.

The IMF chief, writing in a blog, said: “Inequality of opportunity. Inequality across generations. Inequality between women and men. And, of course, inequality of income and wealth. They are all present in our societies and – unfortunately – in many countries they are growing.”
The Guardian (UK)IMF boss says raise taxes on the rich to tackle inequality

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Bill Mitchell — US Labour Market – not yet at full employment despite low unemployment

4 days ago

On January 10, 2020, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released their latest labour market data – Employment Situation Summary – January 2019 – which reveals a labour market that that is still adding jobs, albeit at a slower rate than it was last year. The December performance showed that this moderation has not yet impacted on the unemployment rate – meaning that the employment growth is keeping pace with the underlying population growth with participation steady as indicated by the steady employment-population ratio. The Broad labour underutilisation ratio (U-6) remains high (but fell in December by 0.2 points) and the official unemployment is now hovering around levels not seen since the late 1960s. The U-6 indicator fell because underemployed workers are finding low-wage jobs

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