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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

Why I prefer perpetual/premium bonds to the platinum coin — JP Koning

3 days ago

To my mind, issuing consols as JP Koning suggests is the simple solution and to be preferred over the coin, which has no precedent and appears gimmicky. In addition, he points out that consols fir with existing Fed policy and operations whereas the coin does not.However, my preferred solution would be for the president to order the treasury secretary to ignore the debt ceiling as contradicting previous legislation without repealing it. Then there is also the Fourteenth Amendment. Short and worth a read in full.MoneynessWhy I prefer perpetual/premium bonds to the platinum coinJP Koning

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Russia’s “Sanction-Proof” Trade Corridor to India Frustrates the Neocons — Conor Gallagher

3 days ago

This is a huge deal not because of avoiding sanctions but because of its impact on world trade, the global economy, the Global South and East, and the shifting world order in the direction of multipolarism. It is also a signal that India is taking its place on the world stage as a principal player. This is a huge deal for the world system and it represents a concrete reconfiguration of this system taking place at present. The Global North and West will likely work at disrupting this transformation since it threatens Western dominance. Any disruption will be temporary, since the direction of development is toward that East now that the West is already developed. Subjugation of the East to the West is no longer possible in the longer run. Globalization will happen, just not linearly and not

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Inflation has peaked, the supply side is recovering, and the interest rate rises were for what? — Bill Mitchell

4 days ago

So the IMF has come late to the transitory inflation party. What was obvious months ago is now at the forefront of IMF forecasts. Better late than never I suppose. It is becoming clear that most indicators are still not predicting a major demand-side collapse in most nations. Growth has moderated slightly and the forward indicators are looking up. At the same time, the inflation data around the world is suggesting the price pressures have peaked and lower inflation rates are expected. Real wages continue to fall, which means that the inflationary pressures were not being driven by wages. So no wage-price spiral mechanism at play. And PMI data and related indicators (such as shipping costs, etc) suggest the supply constraints which drove the inflationary pressures are easing. So has all

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Reuters — ECB can’t go bankrupt even it suffers losses

4 days ago

ECB President Christine Lagarde lets the cat out of the bag.“As the sole issuer of euro-denominated central bank money, the Eurosystem will always be able to generate additional liquidity as needed,” Lagarde said in response to a question by an Italian member of the European Parliament.“So, by the definition, it will neither go bankrupt nor run out of money. In addition to that, any financial losses, should they occur, would not impair our ability to seek and maintain price stability….Alan Greenspan testified to a congressional committee about the Fed’s ability to do this, adding that the issue was availability of real resources rather than affordability…Some people still don’t get it. They can’t get beyond the idea of money being a"thing" and can’t fathom the concept of money as

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China bans export of core solar panel technologies — Jeff Pao

4 days ago

In a mirror image of what the United States has been doing with semiconductor lithography technology, China has recently amended its rules to ban the export of several core solar panel technologies in order to maintain its leading status and global market share in the sector. A solar panel on a rooftop may include a hundred pieces of silicon and China has the lead now in machinery to manufacture those. Now Chinese manufacturers have been forbidden to use their large silicon, black silicon and cast-mono silicon technologies overseas, according to the newly-amended export guidelines published by the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Science and Technology. Asia Times China bans export of core solar panel technologies Jeff PaoAlsoReutersU.S. stops granting export licenses for

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Economic forecasting—why it matters and why it is so often wrong — Lars P. Syll

5 days ago

The problems that economists encounter when trying to predict the future really underline how important it is for social sciences to incorporate Keynes’s far-reaching and incisive analysis of induction and evidential weight in his seminal A Treatise on Probability (1921)….Lars P. Syll’s BlogEconomic forecasting — why it matters and why it is so often wrongLars P. Syll | Professor, Malmo University

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How They Paid for the War — Sam Levy

5 days ago

I am certainly not the first person to point to wartime mobilization as a model for our response to climate change. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made headlines3 for it within politics, but academics such as JW Mason, Andrew Bossie, and Isabella Weber have also worked to extract lessons from World War II for today.4 In my research I zero in on the Treasury, a key nexus of macroeconomic policymaking, and compare and contrast their view specifically with that of MMT. The method is historical: I dug through various sources, primary and secondary, to piece together the worldview held by Treasury officials. The result is a surprisingly long list of direct quotations that you could easily mistake for having come from an MMT economist.…Of course, the MMT economists noticed this too.Good article based

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Russia and Iran launch payment system as an alternative to Swift — Middle East Eye

5 days ago

Iran and Russia have linked their banking systems, a senior Iranian official said on Monday, a move that will allow the two heavily sanctioned countries with deepening economic ties to trade and conduct business outside the US financial system.The two connected their interbank communication and transfer systems. Since the 2018 reimposition of sanctions, Iran has been disconnected from the western-based Swift financial messaging system, while many Russian banks were kicked off the platform following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine."Iranian banks no longer need to use SWIFT … with Russian banks, which can be for the opening of Letters of Credit and transfers or warranties," deputy governor of Iran’s Central Bank, Mohsen Karimi, told the semi-official Fars news agency.…Middle East EyeRussia

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The “National Debt” is No One’s Fault — Stephanie Kelton

5 days ago

Let’s stop the finger-pointing and have an honest conversation. Neither side is responsible for our debt crisis, because there isn’t one…. Substantial post.The LensThe "National Debt" is No One’s Fault Stephanie Kelton | Professor of Public Policy and Economics at Stony Brook University, formerly Democrats’ chief economist on the staff of the U.S. Senate Budget Committee, and an economic adviser to the 2016 presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders

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Cargo cult economics — Chris Dillow

5 days ago

Even a little "MMT" thrown in.Of course, a wealth tax would raise money. But the government does not need money: it can print as much of it as you want. It needs real resources: nurses, care-workers, builders, quality managers and so on.Stumbling and MumblingCargo cult economicsChris Dillow, Investors Chronicle

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The common currency for the Mercosur — Matias Vernengo

5 days ago

Lula’s visit to Argentina, during the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) meeting, brought about a brief discussion of the possibility of a common currency. I have discussed here (as well as many guest bloggers) both currency unions, in particular the euro, and it’s consequences. Note that the FT piece linked suggested that the common currency was the first step in a long process. I doubt it, in part because, if the end goal is a real currency union, it would be a terrible idea. The actual proposal by the current finance minister, Fernando Haddad, and one of his collaborators, Gabriel Galípolo, falls short of a common currency area. It is still a bad idea….In my view, the point of this announcement was purely political, and to suggest that the integration between

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Russia’s gas union eyes Pakistan, India — M. K. Bhadrakumar

5 days ago

The big growth in this century is expected to be in Asia, including Central Asia and Southeast Asia, and Africa — unless the West can either control the regions or disrupt their growth. Growth requires increased energy use and alternative energy other than nuclear is not there yet. And even with nuclear energy, much of the planet’s uranium now comes from Kazakstan and Russia. Russia also constructs nuclear power plants. This article is mostly about natural gas along with the geopolitics and geo-economics involved.India PunchlineRussia’s gas union eyes Pakistan, IndiaM. K. Bhadrakumar | retired diplomat with the Indian Foreign Service and former ambassador.

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Core Inflation Woes — Brian Romanchuk

6 days ago

Alex Williams recently wrote “What Is ‘Core PCE Services Ex-Housing’ Anyway?,” which dissects the measure that the Fed is using to get a handle on “underlying” inflation. The most interesting bit (for me) is that about 1/4 of this measure is an imputed price index, based on wages. This means that this component will track wages (giving a convenient analytical relationship) by definition.The logic of following this measure is that the Fed convinced itself that the core (ex-food and and energy) personal consumption expenditure is the best measure of “underlying” inflation, but it turns out that the housing part of that has construction issues (too smoothed to pick up current events), and so they wanted to strip that out of the measure.This measure is obviously problematic. Its use reflects

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British voters depressingly caught between a rock and a hard place — Bill Mitchell

6 days ago

Britain is now in a very undesirable state. The governing Tories are bereft of any sensible ideas and likely to lose the next General election in 2024 to Labour, who are promising to be the party of ‘sound finance’, which means they will be incapable of dealing with the challenges that face the nation in a highly volatile world and will likely end up losing popularity and ceding government back to the Tories. And just as in 2010, the Labour reputation will tarnished and they will be lost again for another sequence of elections. That sort of future prospect is not inspiring is it. Caught between a rock and a hard place.Bill Mitchell – billy blogBritish voters depressingly caught between a rock and a hard placeBill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full

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‘Tombstone for a Tombstone’: Dealing with the ‘bad science’ behind mainstream criticism of MMT — Phil Armstrong

7 days ago

The problem with conventional economics is that it requires that the "settled methodology" define both the questions and how they are answered, insuring that their mathematical models will be tractable. That is inappropriate for complex adaptive systems. All life systems and especially social systems are complex adaptive systems that are appropriately modeled using organic models rather than mechanistic models suitable for the natural sciences.While MMT does not use organic modeling based on the life sciences, neither does it use mechanistic modeling based on the assumption that economics is comparable to the natural sciences and can be modeled on similar principles. But this assume non-existent conditions such as homogeneity and ergodicity, which do not apply to social systems that are

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Russia’s intentions are clarifying — Alasdair Macleod

8 days ago

Gold ruble in the works? Longish. Many details. Speculative so far.Sergei Glazyev has apparently shifted from a commodity basket toward international settlement in gold with the value of gold being anchored to a barrel of oil.GoldmoneyRussia’s intentions are clarifyingAlasdair Macleod

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Can You Smell What the Year of the Rabbit Is Cooking? — Pepe Escobar

9 days ago

The New Silk Roads, or BRI, as well as the integration efforts of BRICS+, the SCO and the EAEU will be on the forefront of Chinese policy.Strategic Culture Foundation (sanctioned by the US Treasury Department)Can You Smell What the Year of the Rabbit Is Cooking?Pepe EscobarSee alsoRussian Foreign Minister Lavrov informed Africans during a press conference while on his latest tour of the continent that India is an independent multipolar powerhouse. His exact words were as follows: “Those powerhouses of their respective regions and to the large extent for the world economy as China and India – you cannot ignore them and you cannot dictate to them — that they should develop the way that will continue to enrich the West – this is colonialism.”Andrew Korybko’s NewsletterLavrov Informed

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Bill Mitchell — Bank of Japan continues to show who has the power

10 days ago

Its been around 9 months since the central banks of the world (bar Japan) started to push up interest rates. This reflected a return to the dominant mainstream view that fiscal policy should aim to support monetary policy in its fight against inflation and thus be biased towards surpluses, while central banks manipulated interest rates to deal with any inflationary pressures. The central banks would somehow form a ‘future-looking’ view that inflation was about to spring up and they would push rates up to curb the pressures. The corollary was that full employment would be achieved through price stability because the market would bring the unemployment rate to a level consistent with stable inflation. So full employment became defined in terms of inflation rather than sufficient jobs to

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Goodbye empire? US sanctions are failing in the face of multipolarity — Felix Livshitz

10 days ago

Published by the Council on Foreign Relations NGO, Foreign Affairs provides space for officials within the US military industrial complex to communicate with one another on matters they believe to be of the utmost significance. Therefore, it is important to pay attention when the magazine makes major pronouncements on any issue.It recently published an appraisal of US sanctions – the conclusion being that they are increasingly ineffective, have prompted Beijing and Moscow to create alternative global financial structures to insulate themselves and others from punitive actions, and that Washington and its acolytes will no longer be able to force countries to do their bidding, let alone destroy dissenting states, through such measures in the very near future.RT — Question More (Russian

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Migrating to Mastodon and some additional announcements — Bill Mitchell

11 days ago

Today, I have a few news and information items. First, I detail how to migrate to Mastodon so that you can continue to follow me as I escape Twitter. Second, I provide enrolment details for the next offering of our MMT edX MOOC. Third, I provide access details to my annual Helsinki public lecture which will take place tomorrow starting at 19:00 EAST.Bill Mitchell – billy blogMigrating to Mastodon and some additional announcementsBill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australiael

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MMT And Banking — Brian Romanchuk

11 days ago

Since I am in the Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) camp, I cannot write a book on baking without covering some of the critiques of MMT and banking. I wrote about this topic in Section 5.7 of my earlier book, Modern Monetary Theory and the Recovery. In this section, I am give a minimal explanation of the topic, without covering too much of the same ground of that earlier text.Note: This is a draft of a section that will go into my banking primer manuscript.Bond EconomicsMMT And BankingBrian Romanchuk

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The Most Egregious Mistake — Alastair Crooke

12 days ago

The situation is more complicated than this but Alastair Crooke brings out some key factors. There were actually two big mistakes that he mentions. First is the mistake of overestimating finance and underestimating productive capacity. Andrei Martyanov had been writing about this for some years.The second, which is related to the first, is the abject failure of intelligence to properly access the strength of the Russian economy. This is seldom mentioned but it is a huge factor. Alastair Crooke served in British intel so it is well aware of it.These mistakes together constitute a blunder that is leading to disaster. The US and its allies either have not yet realized this or have backed themselves into a corner from which they cannot escape without climbing down, and that threatens bringing

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Why sanctions may backfire — Heribert Dieter

12 days ago

The title should be, Why sanctions are backfiring. The hypotheticals are present realities.Interestingly, many have observed that when sanctions were used, war not long behind but they also perfunctorily say that this situation is likely different. Really? War is already raging and escalating along with increased sanctions that are having no noticeable effect on Russia’ behavior.This is a policy mistake that is turning into a strategic blunder of major proportions. Iraq was a strategic blunder but proportionately insignificant in comparison with Russia and China, who have been driven together into a de facto alliance against the US and its allies, many of whom have been dragged into this unfolding conflict reluctantly. War is returning to Europe, the very thing that NATO, the Common

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A Second Civil War — Aidan Simardone

12 days ago

The article is really about the economic "war" underway in the US between rural and urban areas rather than mostly political differences. So was the Civil War, which was about the abolition slavery, a political matter, but emancipation resulted in huge loss of capital. The Civil War was also about the urban-rurual divide, with the urban North dominated by factories and the rural South dominated by agriculture, chiefly cotton production.According to Bouie, slavery’s abolition was an existential threat to White slaveowners, whereas he’s “not sure there’s anything in American society right now that plays the same role”.Bouie is right. Ideas and beliefs are important, but without an economic basis, they cannot generate war. However, he is wrong that post-1991 polarization has no economic

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Putin urges EAEU nations to boost cooperation between national payment systems — TASS

12 days ago

"A consistent reduction of economic risks created by the use of foreign currencies and payment systems for mutual trade is seen as an urgent task. We believe that connecting partners to the Bank of Russia’s financial messaging system and developing inter-system cooperation between national payment systems is an indispensable condition for stable settlements within the Union," he said in an address to heads of EAEU members on the occasion of Russia’s chairmanship in the integration in 2023, which was published on the Kremlin’s website on Monday."Harmonization of financial markets should create favorable conditions for the member states’ capital to remain within the union and for it to be invested in the national economies. We also consider it advisable to examine the possibility of

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