Black Friday, Again?
The global system seems fragile today, March 24, 2023
Just fed the dogs, made a cup of coffee, and looked at my messages. A friend texted in the wee hours, “European banks. Again.” I had to look.
Deutsche Bank down 13% as cost of insuring deposits skyrockets
Dow down 300+ pre-market as world banking crisis deepens
US 10-Year treasury yields down to 3.298% as banking risks rise
Oil drops below $70/bbl as US opts out of refilling the strategic reserve
In the meantime, bond investors are finally realizing that bonds are bad investments, as governments and central banks will gladly suspend the law by wiping out bonds to satisfy stockholders. (This is the opposite of what we all learned in Business Finance 501, is it not?)
Who will be forced to buy Deutche Bank?
It seems capitalism itself is on the brink of extinction. To understand what I mean, consider this scenario:
You are an investor with $1,000,000 to invest. Your goal is simply to beat inflation, to not lose money. Your investment choices:
Corporate bonds which might be worth face value in 30 years and might be worth zero if a bureaucrat gets antsy.
Stocks, which might go up in value, might go down in value, but, apparently, will never go to zero.
Cash which will deteriorate in value at the rate of about 11 percent annually.
Crypto which might do anything and might be criminalized at any moment.
If capitalism means anything, it means a market for capital—a reliable market where contracts are honored and rules dictate rights. Rules like:
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