Thursday, March 18, 2010

Who bets against the collapse of the dollar?

Certainly not the Chinese. A fascinating article about the strangest financial instruments ever devised by scumbags investment bankers, and also why it is highly unlikely the dollar would be allowed to fail. And for those doomsayers who like to quote articles out of context to lend creedence to their screeds, let me save you the trouble and quote it right here:

Now, let’s imagine a world in which the U.S. government, lacking the will to tax or cut spending, can’t scrape up the cash to stay current on interest payments and can’t roll over debt as it matures. That would trigger a huge decline in the value of treasuries and mortgage-backed securities. The balance sheet of every U.S. financial institution—JPMorgan, Goldman, Citi, your neighborhood bank, the Federal Reserve, money-market funds—would be decimated. There wouldn’t be a single solvent bank, insurer, or company in the United States. The large multinational banks, which have significant U.S. operations and plenty of this stuff on their books, would likewise be wiped out. Oh, and foreign holders of U.S. debt—see this list topped by China and Japan—would be toast, too.

– By Daniel Gross, Posted Wednesday, March 17, 2010, at 3:58 PM ET

Of course there is my fave doomsayer, remember him? He’s pretty much convinced civilisation as we know it is doomed. You can’t go too wrong going back to agriculture and stocking up on provisions, as long as you know what you’re doing. The first real fuck up and you and your brood are completely SOL, so Dr Doom’s advice should not be taken by mere amateurs, dilletantes and Panickky Petes.

What to do? Ride out whatever the future brings us, whether it’s mushroom clouds on the horizons or the blessed mundanity of everyday existence. And buy an iPad. At least three of ’em. Please.