Por nettizen - 10 de Diciembre, 2005, 23:26, Categoría: para leer

Reseña del libro What has Government done to our Money? Murray N. Rothbard (obviamente también sería recomendable su lectura :) Sore Spots to Watch Abound in the US Economy: J.C. Ernharth. ¿Preocupaciones "económicas" para los próximos años en los EE.UU.? O ¿Quién dijo miedo? Según Ernharth el listado actual sería...

1. Massive National Debt ($8 Trillion equals $25,000 per citizen, old and young)
2. Off balance-sheet unfunded Federal obligations (Takes the obligation figure above to $100,000 per citizen, according to the Comptroller General of the United States)
3. Politicians that can't say "no" or "budget cut" = massive ongoing budget deficits.
4. Energy Inflation ($60 oil from $13 in 1998-9) will cut disposable income.
5. Real Estate post bubble uncertainty re price valuations (will slow home equity extraction and subsequent spending, and squeeze speculative home investors)
6. Interest-rate-dependent economic expansion: What happens when rates rise above these historic below average lows? (Low rates encourage expansion, tightening rates encourage recessions.)
7. Adjustable and interest only mortgages: what will rising rates do to hit disposable income when the teaser rates end?
8. Global trade imbalance: US accounts for 70% of world's external deficits, requiring massive lending from foreigners - overly dependent on the U.S. consumption miracle.
9. China Boom vs. Slowdown - excess capacity could lead to even more deflationary pressure for U.S. business.
10. American Consumer in a weak state, and likely to back off discretionary spending:
* Lacking income growth support (Stagnant wages -- -wages increasing slower than inflation over past few years).
* Savings short
* Overly-indebted (consumer debt to GDP at record levels)
* Asset growth dependent (the $600 billion "home equity ATM")
11. Rule 101 for wealth: Don't spend more than you earn indefinitely. We've seem to think that no longer applies.
12. Rule 102 for wealth: With debt you have three choices:
* Pay it down (at the expense of consumption/ economic growth);
* Default on it;
* Pay it off with cheaper dollars by printing money / inflation.
13. Money Supply Expansion - While talking tough on inflation via rates, the Fed continues to bloat money supply (13% alone in the three months ending October 2005). Why else are energy, commodity and asset prices rising so much?
14. Major U.S. industries have pre-sold their future, ala automotive industry special discounts and financing...
15. The looming pension default crisis: Many large pensions are underfunded by well over $450 billion dollars. Pensions are insured by the PBGC - already $23 billion in the red, and facing potential defaults from giants like Delphi and GM.
16. The Petro-Dollar Recycling paradigm started in the 1970s could be sharply reduced, causing a decline in the dollar's parity.
17. P/E ratios in the equity markets richly valued on 2004 earnings that may not be sustainable because of an economy heavily dependent on asset inflation and debt.
18. Consumer spending contraction: recessions reverberate more dramatically the worse the consumer's balance sheet is as consumers restore themselves to fiscal health.
19. Dependence on the kindness of strangers: Foreigners finance massive amounts of our debt, and by inference, hold our bond markets in their hands. What happens if they diversify? (Central Bank diversification away from the dollar may explain the most recent run-up in gold!)
20. The Derivatives Market: Warren Buffet refers to derivatives as "Financial Weapons of Mass Destruction" due to their complexity and capacity to shake the foundations of the system in domino fashion, ala Long Term Capital Management in 1999.
21. Global Labor Arbitrage (to quote Stephen Roach of Morgan Stanley), where U.S. labor cannot compete with the ultra-cheap infrastructure-enabled emerging markets. This pressure is moving from manufacturing jobs into the once thought impervious service sector jobs.
22. Global Efficiency Arbitrage: Adding to Roaches premise above, the complexity of doing business in the U.S., with our hyper-overregulated environment, gives many steps up to foreign competition at the expense of U.S. business and workers.
23. Gravitation towards trade barriers: Many issues noted above could involve politician-pimped populist quick-fixes that protect a few people's jobs by blaming external factors vs. addressing needed internal reform. This places extra pressures this places on cash-strapped consumers and their ability to sustain our consumption driven economy.

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[actualizo: 15-12-2005]

What Lies Ahead for the U.S. Economy in 2006 en Knowledge@Wharton

"The economic growth that the United States enjoyed in 2005 will continue in 2006, as stronger business investment begins to pick up the slack on the part of consumers who will curtail the white-hot spending that has been a key factor in propelling the economy, according to Wharton faculty members and private-sector economists.
In addition, oil prices will remain high in 2006, but not much higher than they are now, the residential real estate boom will cool and American workers will be forced to deal with a volatile employment market, these experts say.
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