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Archive for the ‘Deficit’ Category

Day of Reckoning in De-Americanized World

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 16th, 2013 9:55 AM |

Regardless of where you fall along the political spectrum, you can rest assured we will all pay ever increasing costs for the dysfunction on display in Washington.

Some may discount that reality and think the political power plays properly executed trump the costs incurred. I can assure you they do not.

Who holds the ultimate trump card in the current rendition of Washington’s political game of chicken? The bond market. And who especially within the bond market? Foreign holders of dollar-denominated assets. And who is the biggest holder? The People’s Republic of China. Let’s navigate eastward and get some insights on what folks there think about our dysfunctional government:   (more…)

Our Government Remains a Joke!!

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 15th, 2013 8:49 AM |

If our supposed leaders holding public office in Washington were not so pathetic, they may actually be comical.

But there is little to laugh about when we learn just how much the dysfunction in Washington costs our economy. The Financial Times highlights this morning:

Economists are scrambling to assess the damage inflicted on the US recovery by the government shutdown and its second close brush with default in as many years.

But the bigger picture is that the political paralysis surrounding US fiscal policy, with recurring feuds and brinkmanship on Capitol Hill, has already taken a massive toll on the country in the past three years.

In a report released on Monday, Macroeconomic Advisers, the research group, found that America’s budget fights have cost more than 2m jobs and slowed annualised economic growth by 1 percentage point of gross domestic product since 2010. (more…)

Marks and Klarman: There’s No Free Lunch

Posted by Larry Doyle on August 8th, 2013 9:01 AM |

What will future generations do with the massive tab that has been and continues to be run up under the guise of propping our economy?

That is not a rhetorical question.

Many individuals far wiser than I maintain that we will experience generational defaults as our children and children’s children determine that the bills being left to them are not worth paying or able to be paid. That day may not be all that far off. In fact, it has already come in selected municipalities in our nation with surely more to follow.

For more on this topic, I thank the regular reader who shared a fabulous read by Oaktree’s Chairman Howard Marks. Those with the time will appreciate the full memo. I welcome highlighting Marks’ concluding comments in which he shares the wisdom of The Baupost Group’s Seth Klarman as well: (more…)

Ignoring Our Deficit Is Irresponsible

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 22nd, 2013 11:28 AM |

Do you remember where you were and what you were doing in 2005? Although much has transpired over the last 8 years, in many regards 2005 seems like just last week. As I think most would attest, if we think the last 8 years went by quickly, the next 8 will go by even quicker. Why is that such a concern?

For the very simple reason that if we do not prepare NOW, the future for our nation and ALL citizens of the United States will be decidedly more challenging. Why so? As the Financial Times addresses today,

It is the 2020s when the big spending will start. The baby boomers, into their 70s, will start getting sick; the Social Security retirement age will stabilise at 67 in 2022; and the CBO is unwilling to assume that certain controls on medical costs will stick for more than a decade. The revenue and spending paths will become irreconcilable. Debt will pile up – and quickly. (more…)

America’s New Economic Policy: “Screw The Kids”

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 16th, 2013 8:41 AM |

What about me? What is in it for me? How does this work for me? The “ME” mentality strikes me as central to America’s new official economic policy.

Who is “ME”? Our Washington politicos.

What policy is that? Let’s navigate.

Having recently sidestepped the fiscal cliff, and as we continue to navigate the economic landscape, we are now faced, as the FT describes them, with “three enormous gorges.” Sounds ominous, right? What are the three gorges? (more…)

Fiscal Cliff Averted, Fiscal Crisis Looms Ever Larger

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 2nd, 2013 11:18 AM |

Now what?

With Congress having passed legislation to avoid going headlong over the fiscal cliff, what lies ahead for our nation’s fiscal situation and our economy?

The show we saw play out in Washington over the last few months and culminating in pathetically dramatic fashion late last evening strikes me as little more than a preliminary to the main performance and much more substantive issues that are scheduled for late February and into March. What topics will cross our headlines then?  (more…)

Our Government Is a Joke!!

Posted by Larry Doyle on December 22nd, 2012 9:32 AM |

America awakes this morning to the realization that our federal government is collectively unwilling and/or unable to tend to the people’s business.

Many in America might like to point fingers at one side of the aisle or the other. Many others would bemoan the general lack of real leadership in the most senior positions within the federal government. Folks, we can point fingers all we want and apportion blame however we might like . . . but pointing fingers gets us absolutely nowhere. (more…)

Washington: Not Serious About the Deficit

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 30th, 2012 6:58 AM |

Where is Pete Peterson when we really need him?

While America is fed a daily diet of fiscal diarrhea from the politicians and their spokesmen, Peterson remains one of the few adults in and around Washington when it comes to the topic of confronting the fiscal cliff and more importantly our fiscal deficit.

“Fiscal diarrhea, LD? Did you really have to go there, especially on a Friday morning?”

Yes, fiscal diarrhea. How else is one to describe the package and remnants left for us recently by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, as highlighted in this interview with Bloomberg’s Al Hunt, (more…)

Fiscal Cliff: Stupid Is as Stupid Does

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 20th, 2012 10:58 AM |

What is that danger sign on our economic landscape? That sign is warning us that the fiscal cliff is right around the bend. You can not open the papers or turn on the news without seeing the phrase “fiscal cliff” staring you in the face. What is this dangerous precipice all about?

At the request of a number of readers, I welcome addressing this current impending reality given that the wizards in Washington were not able to properly manage our nation’s fiscal affairs a year ago, or the year before that, or the many years before that and so on and so forth. So, just what exactly is this “cliff?” (more…)

What Do We Have to Show for Our Deficit?

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 8th, 2012 7:15 AM |

There is nothing inherently wrong with borrowing money. Taking out a loan to fund a business, buy a house, pay for education are all worthwhile endeavors for individuals and a nation alike. This said, there comes a point where imprudent borrowing and lending run the risk of fiscal calamity. That segment of our economic landscape is a distant  memory in our nation’s rear view mirror.

My 8th grade son is mesmerized by the Debt Clock in the left hand sidebar here at Sense on Cents adding ~$5,000/second to our national debt. He asks me how our debt could have gotten so high and so out of control. For his benefit and that of others, I welcome providing another view of our nation’s past and projected fiscal deficit.   (more…)

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