quinta-feira, outubro 30, 2014

Why We're Poorer: Inflation and Deflation Are Now Globalized

As democracias estão a perder a corrida para os gangsters da globalização


Quando os nossos batráquios parlamentares, os nossos governantes e os nossos jornalistas palram de deflação, não sabem obviamente o que dizem, mas tal como as ovelhas em rebanho, quando uma começa a berrar, as outras berram em uníssono!

Já escrevemos várias vezes sobre o mito da deflação e do motivo que leva banksters, cleptocratas, governos e a partidocracia a propagarem o pânico em volta da deflação. Basicamente querem reestruturar (i.e. anular parcialmente) as dívidas soberanas e as imparidades gigantescas do setor bancário e corporativo, à custa, por um lado, da destruição das taxas de juro e da deflação dos rendimentos do trabalho e da poupança e, por outro, da inflação dos preços de uma vasta gama de bens essenciais, como a energia, transportes, bens alimentares, saúde e educação.

Só há deflação de salários. Quase tudo o resto está sob o império da inflação e da reflação.

Vale a pena ler mais esta desmontagem do embuste da deflação.

We're being hit with a double-whammy: Wages are under deflationary pressure, and almost everything else is exposed to inflationary pressure.

Now that prices for commodities such as oil and grain are set on the global market, local surpluses don't push prices down. If North America has record harvests of grain, on a national basis we'd expect prices to fall as local supply exceeds local demand.

But since grain is tradable, i.e. it can be shipped to other markets where demand and thus prices are much higher, the price in North America reflects supply and demand everywhere on the planet, not just in North America.

If we put ourselves in the shoes of a farmer or grain wholesaler, this is a boon: why sell your product for 1X locally, when it fetches 2X in other countries? You'd be crazy not to put it on a boat and get double the price elsewhere.

As the share of the economy exposed to digitization increases, so does the share of work that can be done anywhere on the planet. When work is digitized, it is effectively commoditized, meaning that it no longer matters who performs the work or where they live.

If people in countries with low wages can perform the work, why on Earth would you pay double to have high-wage people do the work? It makes no sense. Taking advantage of the differences in local pay scales is called labor arbitrage, as the employer is trading on (i.e. arbitraging) two sets of prices.

It's not just labor that can be arbitraged: currency, interest rates, risk, environmental regulations, commodities--huge swaths of the global economy can be arbitraged.

The basic idea of the global carry trade is to borrow money cheaply in a currency that's weakening and use the money to buy low-risk, high-yield assets in currencies that are gaining in relative value.
It's a slam dunk arbitrage: not only does the trader earn an essentially free return (borrowing yen at 1%, for example, converting the yen to dollars and buying Treasury bonds paying 3%), but there is a bonus yield on the dollar strengthening against the yen: a two-fer return.

Global labor is in over-supply--one reason why wages in the U.S. have been declining in real terms, i.e. when inflation is factored in. The better description is purchasing power: how much can your paycheck buy?




Courtesy of David Stockman, here is a chart of inflation (i.e. loss of purchasing power) since 2000:



oftwominds-Charles Hugh Smith: Why We're Poorer: Inflation and Deflation Are Now Globalized

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