Posted by Larry Doyle on April 20th, 2009 5:30 AM |
As I referenced on my radio show last evening (note: you can listen to an audio recording of the show from the BlogTalkRadio player in the right sidebar), China’s economy is benefitting from economic stimulus enacted by its government. Well, the U.S. government also enacted a major Stimulus Package in early February. How is our package doing? Is it impacting the economy? Our economy certainly does not seem to be benefitting significantly from any government stimulus.
I wrote on February 7th that Martin Feldstein, renowned Harvard economist who sits on Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, called the Stimulus Package An $800 Billion Mistake.
Feldstein’s concerns about the Stimulus as reported by the Washington Post, focused on several items:
1. On the spending side, the stimulus package is full of well-intended items that, unfortunately, are not likely to do much for employment.
2. The largest proposed outlays amount to just writing unrestricted checks to state governments.
3. The plan to finance health insurance premiums for the unemployed would actually increase unemployment by giving employers an incentive to lay off workers rather than pay health premiums during a time of weak demand.
4. A large fraction of the stimulus proposal is devoted to infrastructure projects that will spend out very slowly, not with the speed needed to help the economy in 2009 and 2010.
5. The problem with the current stimulus plan is not that it is too big but that it delivers too little extra employment and income for such a large fiscal deficit.
Let’s see how business executives view the rollout of the Stimulus Package. Would they agree or disagree with Feldstein’s concerns? (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on March 18th, 2009 11:22 AM |
A month or so ago, I introduced former Australian Prime Minister and Treasury Secretary Paul Keating to our readers here at Sense on Cents. Keating offered a wealth of piercing and insightful perspectives on the world of global finance. He forecasted the likely shift of global financial power toward the surplus countries in Asia. While I have never seen nor heard Keating’s views broadcast here in the United States, I appreciated his sobering analysis.
In a similar vein, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is not exactly a household name in the United States. We were provided the political strappings of President Obama’s initial foreign trip when he traveled to Ottawa to meet Harper 6 weeks ago. The pomp and circumstance along with the Royal Canadian Mounties made for some nice theatre. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on March 10th, 2009 11:19 AM |
I very much appreciate reading material written by people whom I perceive as having no agenda. I have tried to bring people like this (including Ray Dalio, Paul Keating, Bob Rodriguez, Steve Rehm, Kevin Doyle, Vaclav Klaus, and many others) to Sense on Cents because I firmly believe we all become more educated and informed in the process. Please let me know if and when you perceive me, any of the pieces to which I link, or radio guests on NQR’s Sense on Cents as not dealing totally in the truth. Constructive criticism is always appreciated and will make for a better site.
Along with the aformentioned, I have also previously remarked on my high regard for John Mauldin, one of our Economic All-Stars. John himself possesses an insightful global perspective and has a circle of friends and confidantes that are simply off the charts.
In John’s weekly Outside the Box, he shares with us the perceptions of Michael E. Lewitt. Mr. Lewitt writes at length on topics we have covered here previously, but his level of detail and thoughtful analysis are well worth the read.
Topics covered include: (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on February 10th, 2009 3:46 PM |
In light of the serious economic crisis facing our country and the world today, there is understandably heightened interest and anticipation towards both the proposed Stimulus Plan and the newly designated Financial Stability Plan. Clearly every individual in our country is impacted by this turmoil and we are hopeful that our leaders in both the private and public sectors can display the real leadership necessary to “right the ship.” Let’s provide a concise review of the newly designated Financial Stability Plan proposed today by Secretary Geithner. I’ll then move toward a further review of our economy and what it means for us going forward.
Financial Stability Plan
Secretary Geithner prefaced his remarks by highlighting that this process will “take time to resolve.” He offered that there is plenty of blame to go around to the public and private sectors, including the regulatory and rating agencies. He acknowledged that public distrust has heightened in the process. While he believes the government is being appropriately aggressive with this plan, I do not share that opinion. I commend him for emphatically stating that there will be total transparency in the process, along with strong contingencies for any entities that borrow public funds. All details will be posted on www.financialstability.gov.
While Geithner did lay out the overview of the plan, he did not extensively provide details. The market has sold off 3% in the process. I believe the market also sold off given the realization that this plan is going to take a LONG time to make a real impact. Let’s get to the meat of the plan: (more…)