Public Reports

The Cycle of Falling Interest, Gold and Silver Report 12 Nov 2017

Over the past few weeks, we have looked at the effects of falling interest rates: falling discount applied to future cash flows (and hence rising stock and bond prices), and especially falling marginal productivity of debt (MPoD). Falling MPoD means that we get less and less GDP “juice” for each new dollar of borrowing “squeeze”. […]

Heat Death of the Economic Universe, Report 5 Nov 2017

Physicists say that the universe is expanding. However, they hotly debate (OK, pun intended as a foreshadowing device) if the rate of expansion is sufficient to overcome gravity—called escape velocity. It may seem like an arcane topic, but the consequences are dire either way. If the rate of expansion is too low, then it will […]

Falling Discount, Gold and Silver Get Powelled, Report 29 Oct 2017

Warren Buffet famously proposed the analogy of a machine that produces one dollar per year in perpetuity. He asks how much would you pay for this machine? Clearly it is worth something more than $1.00. And it’s equally clear that it’s not worth $1,000. The value is somewhere in between. But where? This leads to […]

Falling Interest, Gold and Silver Report 22 Oct 2017

Last week, we discussed the marginal productivity of debt. This is how much each newly-borrowed dollar adds to GDP. And ever since the interest rate began its falling trend in 1981, marginal productivity of debt has tightly correlated with interest. The lower the interest rate, the less productive additional borrowing has in fact become. Let’s […]

What Made Gold Go Up, Update 20 Oct 2017

Yesterday, the Department of Labor announced that initial jobless claims dropped. Quite a lot. So naturally, markets reacted. The stock market began to rise. The euro rose, at least for a while. And the prices of our favorite heavy metals rose, particularly silver. Silver was around its low of $16.92 before the report. Two and […]

Falling Productivity of Debt, Gold and Silver Report 15 Oct 2017

Last week, we discussed the ongoing fall of dividend, and especially earnings, yields. This Report is not a stock letter, and we make no stock market predictions. We talk about this phenomenon to make a different point. The discount rate has fallen to a very low level indeed. Discount in stocks is how you assess […]

Stocks Up and Yields Down, Gold and Silver Report 8 Oct 2017

Many gold bugs make an implicit assumption. Gold is good, therefore it will go up. This is tempting but wrong (ignoring that gold does not go anywhere, it’s the dollar that goes down). One error is in thinking that now you have discovered a truth, everyone else will see it quickly. And there is a […]

Thoughtful Disagreement with Ted Butler

Dear Mr Butler: In your article of 2 October, entitled Thoughtful Disagreement, you say, “someone will come up with the thoughtful disagreement that makes the body of my premise invalid or the price of silver will validate the premise by exploding.” I will take you up on your request. You state your case in this […]

Is That a Feature or a Bug? Gold & Silver Report 1 Oct 2017

We have covered many reasons why bitcoin is unsound and not money. It’s a ledger of unbacked liabilities. It is designed to have finite quantity but therefore indeterminate and hence volatile value. This makes it unusable for borrowing or lending and hence savings, but a great a vehicle for conversion of one person’s wealth into […]

Is Bitcoin a Commodity, Gold & Silver Report 24 Sep 2017

Carl Menger, father of the Austrian School of Economics, showed the world that money is not the product of the state. He did not mean that government is intrinsically incapable of decreeing something to be money while other groups, organized for different purposes, could do it. He described how money emerges as the commodity which […]