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Mitch Feierstein
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Entries by Mitch Feierstein

Numbers Never Lie -- Central Bankers, Politicians and Lawyers Do -- Is the Fed Conspiring Against Us?

(18) Comments | Posted April 17, 2013 | 11:21 AM

The dual mandate of the Federal Reserve is a good one. It is charged with ensuring stable prices and maximum employment. That's a good basic recipe, one which served the country well.

And notice what isn't there. The Fed is not charged with distorting natural market pricing mechanisms to the...

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Currency Wars Have Begun: Central Banks in Denial or Worse

(24) Comments | Posted March 6, 2013 | 12:10 PM

Here's a piece of recent news that you almost certainly missed: A large consumer products company, Johnson & Johnson, announced a one-off loss owing to a 32 percent currency devaluation in Venezuela. The reason I expect you missed that less-than-seismic piece of news is that, unless you happen to be...

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A Song for the Holidays: On the First Day of Christmas, What Greedy Bankers and Politicians Gave to Me

(11) Comments | Posted December 19, 2012 | 3:53 PM

On the first day of Christmas, my country gave to me
A debt bigger than GDP

Yep, that's right. U.S. public debt stands at more than 100 percent of GDP. The last time debt was this high, we were fighting a World War across two continents and...

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The Fed's Nuclear Balance Sheet. Stand Back: This Baby's Going to Explode

(28) Comments | Posted November 16, 2012 | 3:54 PM

Over the coming weeks, we're going to be hearing a lot about the 'fiscal cliff': the threat that some 5% of GDP is going to be ripped out of the economy in a combination of tax hikes and spending cuts. A fiscal slow-down on that scale will almost...

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Why This Yankees Fan Is Pleased the Bronx Bombers Lost the ALCS

(2) Comments | Posted October 19, 2012 | 10:00 AM

I'm a Yankees fan. From the room in Doctors Hospital on East End Avenue where I was born, you could see the old stadium lights. I started watching the Yankees way back, in 1965. My grandfather took me. He was a local politician in the Bronx and insanely proud of...

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When Will Central Bankers and Politicians Learn: Stock Markets Have Nothing to Do With Prosperity on Main Street

(28) Comments | Posted September 13, 2012 | 7:03 PM

Last week, the Bank of England declared its intention to print another £50 billion. Hardly anyone noticed. That £50 billion will bring the Bank's total money printing to around £425 billion, or about one quarter of British GDP. No one cares. This evening, the U.S. Federal Reserve will announce its...

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Hey, There's a Worm in the Apple (Inc.)

(30) Comments | Posted July 26, 2012 | 5:39 PM

Back in April, I wrote a piece about Apple Inc. I suggested that the company's stock price was a little frothy. I suggested caution was in order. At time of writing that piece, the company's stock price was at about $635, just a shade off its high.


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The Bureau of Lies and Spin: A Guide to Understanding the Unemployment Statistics

(9) Comments | Posted July 16, 2012 | 6:07 PM

Last week I wrote a piece about Congress: its failure to take responsibility for problems, the way its un-shining example has a tendency to corrupt all our other national institutions.

The post garnered a remarkable number of comments, the majority of which agreed strongly with the view I...

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U.S. Congress: You're Fired! 68% of the Country Is Right!

(248) Comments | Posted July 5, 2012 | 8:43 AM

How low can a political system sink? Pretty low it would seem. A recent Rasmussen poll suggests that around two-thirds of us would happily fire every single member of Congress, a spectacular lack of confidence in our lawmakers. These are unprecedented levels of disdain and the sad thing...

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This Time It's Different: Why It's Time to Fire Bernanke

(72) Comments | Posted June 22, 2012 | 4:44 PM

Two bits of news in the last couple days. One, Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, has decided to extend Operation Twist, a policy whereby the Fed sells short-dated government paper in order to buy the longer-dated sort. It sounds boring but it involves $267 billion, so it's kind...

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Simple Math Says Europe Is Bankrupt

(0) Comments | Posted June 14, 2012 | 7:18 AM

There's a lot of talk about Europe at the moment, but it's kind of the way you talk about flooding when the waters don't reach your house. Sure, it must be real tough for the poor saps whose couches are bobbing around in their living rooms -- but meantime, what's...

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Capitalism Without Bankruptcy is Like Catholicism Without Hell

(160) Comments | Posted June 8, 2012 | 10:25 AM

Barack Obama was recently on the stump, defending the latest set of lackluster jobs figures. Obama blamed 'serious headwinds' including higher gas prices and, more recently, the developing crisis in the Eurozone. Having handed much of the blame to foreign oilfields and European crises, he returned...

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Does Anyone Ever Take Responsiblity for Anything Now?

(9) Comments | Posted May 31, 2012 | 3:17 PM

An interesting news item recently: When Bernie Madoff's Ponzi Scheme collapsed, the man charged with recovering as much money as possible for the investors he swindled was Irving Picard, the court-appointed trustee. In some ways, Picard has done a decent job. Faced with a horrible situation, he has...

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A Hundred Billion Here, a Hundred Billion There

(20) Comments | Posted May 28, 2012 | 2:37 PM

Last week, on 21 May, the Financial Times ran a short piece which opened thus: "There has been no official announcement. No terms or conditions have been disclosed. But Greece's banking system is being propped up by an estimated €100 billion or so of emergency liquidity provided by...

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A Short Note to Obama, Romney, and the Mainstream Media

(11) Comments | Posted May 21, 2012 | 2:48 PM

Summer's coming. An election campaign's pending. Obama's in favor of gay marriage. Mitt Romney's trying to figure out his vice presidential pick. The mainstream media is trying to second-guess his choices even before they're even made.

But, guys, there are some big issues out here. You know, real ones...

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The View From the Rooftops

(3) Comments | Posted May 7, 2012 | 10:00 AM

A day at Wimbledon
This week, Mervyn King, the long-standing Governor of the Bank of England, said about the 2008 financial crisis, 'We should have shouted from the rooftops that a system had been built in which banks were too important to fail, that banks had grown...

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Farcebook: A Stratospheric Valuation

(4) Comments | Posted April 26, 2012 | 5:32 PM

Facebook is a phenomenal company. Mark Zuckerberg is a remarkable man and an astonishing entrepreneur. He's created something sensational -- something genuinely world-changing -- and he's young enough to be my son.

But Facebook the company is one thing. The mooted valuation of Facebook is quite another. I admire the...

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President Sarkozy to Press: 'See You Tomorrow, Pedophile Friends'

(7) Comments | Posted April 17, 2012 | 2:16 PM

There's a theory that you can't trust any message conveyed by a person's most public expressions and gestures. Instead, the theory runs, you have to study the fleeting look, the involuntary movement. The micro-expression that lasts a second or two, before the welcome smile is fixed in place.

That theory...

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The Honey Fungus

(7) Comments | Posted April 13, 2012 | 11:16 AM

The largest, oldest living thing?

Blue whale? Giant redwood? Some kind of deep sea critter? No, no and no. The right answer is the honey mushroom. You'll see the thing growing out of trees in Oregon and Washington. It doesn't look particularly creepy, or at least no creepier than these...

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Apple: A Cautionary Tale

(23) Comments | Posted April 4, 2012 | 6:52 PM

Apple Inc. is a phenomenon. One of the most remarkable companies in history. It makes products which I personally adore. It has revolutionized so many consumer markets, it's hard to overstate the company's effect on our lives. Steve Jobs once said he wanted to put a ding in the universe....

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