Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Out On A Limb - A Very Thin Limb!

Up, up, up we go! Thank goodness for the reflation trade. Lord knows our bubble may have burst and that would have been horrendous! Thank goodness the removed FRE and FNM from the federal budget, wrapped them in protective bubble wrap, removed all sharp objects from the room and put them in the closet not to be addressed till 2011. Phew, I feel better now that they have addressed that problem!

Why the out on a limb title? Well, anytime I bring Prechter into the mix it gets dangerous. The timing is better for his prophecy this time. The link Bear Market Armageddon: Why Prechter Might Be Right This Time (the title kind of says it all - this time) takes you to a good article and a series of videos you may want to listen to. The whole series is pretty good. Even better, I don't think he mentions the word "top" once! Bottom line is the vids provide a nice all around primer for everyone. 

Further out on the limb I go when I bring you Jon Stewart. Last night he did a great piece on how we're getting screwed by the CC companies in Make it Rain - Bank of America - Wyatt Cenac examines Bank of America's hidden credit card fees with a former employee and a mafia loan shark that is worth a look. The loan shark at the end is really funny. 

Since the economy is out on a thin limb why not cover some of the action today. The news today was just as nasty and bountiful as any other, but you never would have known that given the markets actions. The MSM cheer leading propaganda machine tends to neglect major news events as well (or spins them if they should be forced to cover a tough issue).

Mish's site is full of wonderful posts every day (if you are into the doom and gloom thang). Just view the recent posts list on the left side and start reading. Today he has Is Consumer Confidence a Contrarian Indicator?. This is a good one in the case that the bulltards will spin and twist the numbers as big buying signal, but Mish (and I) think differently, "Rather than being a contrarian play, I think consumers have reached the recognition phase, with a panic phase yet to follow. This possibility is something that economists might want to take into consideration if they would ever take off their rose colored glasses and view the real world for how it is. It may be darkest before dawn, but the sun has barely set. The contrarian play is to bet against the masses who misunderstand history."

Pension Pulse has a great post on something I like to key on every now and then, underfunded pension obligations. In Pension Systems on the Brink? you get a nice report that breaks down the major flaws that exist in the $1 Trillion unfunded gap. This is a HUGE deal. States can not fund these obligations (they never have - how could they now). Big brother to borrow from to fund obligations (read - living on xtra credit just like everyone else to get thru) is no longer there. This will be a huge part of the total meltdown (especially after P3 hits and the unfunded portion skyrocket).

I suggest that you troll on over to Calculated Risk and sample the fare there. The news surrounding the RE/housing crisis was not pretty today. CR covers it from every angle.

For those of you that rarely go to Zero Hedge, just pop over there and read the headlines of the posts today. It will make your head spin. (Don't look at yesterday's unless you want your head to spin so fast you wind up getting sick)

LOL, what do we find at the tip of the limb? Denninger on Kaiser Report? Yup, only in Russia can you get something that good. Karl comes on about 14min into the program and then stumbles thru explaining the difficult to explain synthetic CDO's that have wiped out Greece and made the banksters rich biach while some hypnotic circle spins in the background (psychedelics not provided).  The whole 30m is worth watching IMO.

Not sure who put the water wings on the markets in the last fifteen minutes of trading or if TOS just has some errors (nothing happened on the minis).

Have a good one.