Category: Economy

The Long Fight to Cancel Student Loans

Those who object to canceling student debt usually point to income quintiles: People with large quantities of debt—i.e., people who went to graduate school—are more likely to earn high incomes. Some critics even argue that cancellation would be “regressive,” that it would give the biggest boost to high earners and those privileged enough to go […]

Read More

America’s “Helicopter Parent”

The decay of America’s middle class has been well documented and many commentators have explored the causes. This decay isn’t random; the income of the middle class isn’t going to suddenly increase at 15 times the growth rate of the income of the top 0.1%. The income of the top 0.1% grew 15 times faster […]

Read More

Here’s When the Bull Market Ends

The good news: this bull market will run for months and months. The bad news: stock gains will be lean. The lion has already taken his bites. This is the studied conclusion of crack financial journalist Mark Hulbert. He has ransacked market history and interrogated the data. Stock market rhythms stretching to 1900 inform him […]

Read More

Washington’s Inflation Hysteria Is Fueled by Corporate Greed

The economy has changed. And what we saw in the last couple of cycles is that inflation never really moved up as unemployment went down. We had 3.5 percent unemployment, which is a 50-year low, for much of the last two years before the pandemic. And inflation didn’t really react much. That means that we […]

Read More

Is Biden Ditching His Promise to Protect Workers From Covid-19?

Remember meatpackers? Berkowitz testified before Congress last month that “as of mid-February 2021, at least 57,000 meatpacking and poultry workers have been infected with Covid-19, and over 280 have died.” The honor system doesn’t seem to work any better under Biden than it did under Trump. Last week the United Food and Commercial Workers filed […]

Read More

Back to the 1970s

After a multi-month correction in gold, fear and frustration are apparent among gold investors. But today, I’d like to present a case for sticking with gold. Here it is in a nutshell: As long as politicians spend wildly and the Fed keeps monetary policy loose, the case for gold will remain compelling. And both are […]

Read More

Republicans Are Too Subservient to Corporate America to Wage War on “Woke Capitalism”

These corporations weren’t “hijacking our country from outside the constitutional order.” They were registering anxiety about the increasingly reckless behavior of their natural ally, the GOP. It’s sometimes said that a new strain of anti-corporate conservatism lies a-borning within the Republican Party, reflecting a shift of working class white voters, and even some working class […]

Read More

Starbucks, Goldman Sachs, ACLU and Others Pledge to Tackle Racial Wealth Gap by Boosting Black Employment and Business Investments

Photo: Shutterstock Some of the biggest companies in America say they will put their considerable might behind a mission of closing the massive wealth gap between Black people and white people in this country. Advertisement According to analysis by Brookings Institute, the median wealth held by Black households in the U.S. is not even 15 […]

Read More

The Labor-Rights Legislation That Could Make Medicare for All a Reality

However important issue-based advocacy groups may be, they simply can’t muster the power that unions can. That’s not because workers are noble or magic, but because they have something that capital needs to generate profits: labor power, which unions pool into units large enough to hold leverage over bosses in a way that brilliantly crafted […]

Read More

Archegos: Snowflake That Triggers the Avalanche?

Archegos was not a household name until about two weeks ago when it made headlines all over the world. Archegos Capital Management is a family office controlled by Bill Hwang, a former hedge fund trader. Family offices can be conservative in their investment approach, but they can also be as highly leveraged and as risky […]

Read More

War on Cash: The Next Phase

With so much news about an economic reopening, a border crisis, massive government spending and exploding deficits, it’s easy to overlook the ongoing war on cash. That’s a mistake because it has serious implications not only for your money, but for your privacy and personal freedom, as you’ll see today. Cash prevents central banks from […]

Read More

An Old Man in a Hurry

Mr. Biden is an old man in a hurry… There he is… atop his galloping steed, whip in his hand, glory in his eyes — and history on his mind. Axios: President Biden recently held an undisclosed East Room session with historians that included discussion of how big is too big — and how fast […]

Read More

Still Nickel and Dimed: Unpacking Tipping, Minimum Wage and the Fight for Equity

“What happened at Emancipation with…the idea of tipping being mutated from an extra hour bonus on top of the wage to becoming the wage itself—becoming a replacement for wages—really cannot be understood as anything other than a devaluation of Black lives and women’s work.” — Saru Jayaraman, President of One Fair Wage If you’ve been […]

Read More

How the Top 0.01 Percent Became America’s Criminal Class

But as capital grows, it finds its way into all sorts of dark crevices: complex partnerships and abstruse financial structures that third parties such as banks don’t report properly to the government, and offshore accounts that don’t get documented at all. And not surprisingly, when there’s no third-party reporting, people cheat. Less than half such […]

Read More

The Hole Is Already Too Deep

A man shovels himself deep into a hole. He then wishes to climb out. What must he do first? He must stop the digging. Yet the United States government has shoveled itself into a $28 trillion hole. How does it plan to rise out of it? By digging deeper… and deeper… and deeper. Within one […]

Read More

La, La, La, La, Kanye West Got His Money Right—Now Worth $6.6 Billion, Reportedly Richest Black Man in the U.S.

Kanye West speaks on stage at the “Kanye West and Steven Smith in Conversation with Mark Wilson” on November 07, 2019.Photo: Brad Barket/Getty Images for Fast Company (Getty Images) Remember when Kanye West first burst into the mainstream scene and referred to himself as “Kanye Cheddar?” Well, now he has a lot of damn cheese. […]

Read More

Fed Lets Circus Roll On

The Federal Reserve sat idle on its hands today. And so the federal funds rate stays nailed to the floorboards. Monthly asset purchases will roll on at $120 billion the month. Markets feared that Mr. Powell and mates might telegraph hawkish hints today as growth — and inflation — bubble and percolate. But the reign […]

Read More

Republicans Greet Covid Stimulus With Another Round of Inflation Fearmongering

At this point, a reasonable person would be forced to admit that a prediction of high inflation made in 2010 was based on faulty theory. Yet, few of those who signed the letter to Bernanke owned up to any doubts when queried by Bloomberg News in October 2014. It is worth quoting them at length. […]

Read More

The Covid Relief Bill Also Raises Taxes on the Rich

Taxes have all sorts of purposes. Some taxes—most, actually—are intended to raise revenue. Other taxes, say on booze and cigarettes, are intended to alter behavior. The taxes in the latter group, known as “sin taxes,” usually end up doing some combination of both things—they discourage consumption of alcohol and tobacco a bit, but because the […]

Read More

Trophy Homes and $2.5 Million Tweets: How the Idle Rich Spent Their Pandemic Year

Pity the newly rich, who are struggling with where to put their millions. According to a recent analysis cited by The New York Times, about 7,000 millionaires will emerge from the latest round of Silicon Valley IPOs, which include companies like Airbnb, Snowflake, and Palantir, and they’re not sure how to spend it in these […]

Read More

The Deficit Hawks That Make Moderate Democrats Cower

The organization embraces a deflationary logic: It wants the government to suppress private consumption so a greater share of economic output accrues to the private owners of existing capital, supposedly making the country more competitive in the international fight for investment dollars. Federal spending threatens that model. The CFRB warns that government borrowing can “crowd […]

Read More

Federal Program Will Send Every Chicago Public Schools Student $450 for Food Expenses

Teachers at King Elementary School, prepare to teach their students remotely in empty classrooms during the first day of classes on September 08, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois.Photo: Scott Olson (Getty Images) I’m sure at this point you don’t need me to reiterate how disruptive the coronavirus pandemic has been. In an effort to help address […]

Read More

The FinTech Industry Wants to Give Desperate Workers an Advance on Their Next Paycheck. It’s a Trap.

Consumer advocates are very alarmed by the underlying power imbalance between wage-access providers and the low-income workers they serve, exposing once again Silicon Valley’s penchant for dressing up in utopian visions the dystopian brutality of its desire to make money. “If you think about someone working at Walmart, Target, someone like that,” says Keith Corbett, […]

Read More

The Real Trade of the Decade?

The market is abuzz about the next round of fiscal stimulus coming from Washington, D.C., and the “reflation trade” is dominating the discussion. This trade involves buying commodities, energy, basic materials, base metals like copper… and hybrid monetary/industrial metals like silver. Of all metals, silver has the highest electrical conductivity. That makes it ideal for […]

Read More

The Beatings Will Continue

The beatings will continue until morale improves. The Hon. Jerome H. Mr. Powell, in statements this Tuesday: There is a long way to go to maximum employment… We live in a time where there is significant disinflationary pressures around the world and where essentially all major advanced economy’s central banks have struggled to get to […]

Read More

COVID Will Fade, BUT…

The absence of the big orange You-Know-Who at center stage of American life has changed the mood of the scene from a five-alarm fire to just another day in a collapsing civilization. As long as he remains healthy, and evades assassin’s bullets, Mr. Trump will go after his antagonists in Congress like a mad dog […]

Read More

Russell Westbrook Helps Varo Bank Secure $63 Million Investment, Will Address Financial Inequality as Advisor

Photo: Will Newton (Getty Images) I will never in life seek his counsel on fashion choices, but when it comes to money moves, Russell Westbrook is no joke. On Thursday, Varo Bank, America’s first all-digital nationally chartered bank, announced that the nine-time NBA All-Star has come on board as both an investor and advisor. In […]

Read More

‘I Will Not Make That Happen’: Biden Says No to $50,000 Student Debt Forgiveness

Photo: Saul Loeb (Getty Images) Get ready to lower your expectations if you’d been hoping that President Biden would heed the call of some Democrats to cancel student debt up to $50,000 per borrower. The president outright rejected that idea during a town hall hosted by CNN in Milwaukee on Tuesday. Advertisement After a member […]

Read More

Green New Deal Is Underway

By now, you’ve heard of the Green New Deal, an ambitious agenda to decarbonize the economy. The overall Green New Deal calls for ending the use of oil and natural gas, moving to electric vehicles, solar, wind and geothermal power, imposing carbon taxes to reduce C02 emissions and providing government subsidies to non-carbon-based energy technologies. […]

Read More

The Fed Faces Two Choices

A man shipwrecked bobs along in his lifeboat… The cruel sun cooks him. His thirst tortures him. His sufferings are doubled, tripled and quadrupled by this impossible irony: Water, water is everywhere — yet there is scarcely a drop to drink. Salt water in any quantity would murder him. Thus he dangles from the hooks […]

Read More