Dec 21 2010

Las Vegas is to the real estate bubble what Detroit was to the US automobile industry – Empty condo projects, apartments poorly built to face the desert sun, and the collapse of commercial real estate.

If Wall Street is the hub of American finance then Las Vegas was the manifestation of credit dreams going viral.  Las Vegas, the beating heart of Nevada had a tremendous boom with the real estate bubble because it played into the narrative of making it big.  Where else can unknowns strike it big and have […]

Dec 18 2010

Federal Reserve is the primary tool of the new financial oligarchy – The ultimate banking clearing house with zero oversight from the people still holds over $2 trillion on its balance sheet.

The Federal Reserve system (the Fed for short) is the US central banking system.  The Fed was created in 1913 with the enactment of the Federal Reserve Act.  In the beginning the Fed had limited powers and its mission was limited.  According to the Fed its mission today is to conduct monetary policy, supervise and […]

Dec 15 2010

The red queen race of debt – US public debt set to pass US annual GDP. The 100 percent GDP to public debt threshold is quickly approaching.

People may not even realize that during the Great Depression, US Federal debt as a percent of GDP did not even reach 40 percent.  Part of this was because the size of government was much smaller in military, public services, and entitlements.  The only time in history that the US as a whole spent more […]

Dec 13 2010

The growing chasm between rich and poor in America – Latest data shows that 500,000 people were added to the food assistance program in one month. 6 million Americans added over the last year. Those that buy diamonds versus those that barely have enough to buy soup.

The shrinking of the American middle class is painful to watch.  Shopping at the grocery store I’ve noticed more and more people with unique debit cards that don’t look like your typical debit or credit card.  These are actually the modern day food stamps and help to take away the stigma of pulling out a […]

Dec 10 2010

How much does the average American make in 2010? Examining new data on U.S. household income numbers and high income earners. 100 million Americans make less than $39,999 per year.

Examining the average income for Americans sheds a very troubling light on what has happened to income over a very financially destructive decade.  If we look at the median household income in the U.S. this actually underplays the falling behind of wages because we are looking at households with multiple people working.  Without a doubt […]

Dec 8 2010

The era of mega banks – The growth of too big to fail. American banking system still backing over $13 trillion in assets with a negative deposit insurance fund. 7,760 banks but 19 banks make up 50 percent of the asset base.

The growth of the too big to fail bank is something that is modern to this era.  In the 1990s there were fewer than 40 institutions that had total assets above $20 billion.  In the late part of the 1980s and 1990s this number was below 20.  The peak was reached in 2005 with 55 […]

Dec 6 2010

Catch 22 economics – The U.S. economy has 7,400,000 less workers than the peak in late 2007 yet nominal GDP is at a record. What does that mean for those without jobs?

The Friday jobs report was significant for a variety of reasons but one key theme is that it shows the true fragility of the state of the economy.  Even though it was a net add of 39,000 jobs we need to remember that the nation needs to add roughly 150,000 jobs per month just to […]

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