Another EVA, another chance to read the thoughts of one of the planet’s smartest men, Anatole Kaletsky! This week’s issue is a follow-up to the January 26th edition, also by Anatole, titled “The Big Questions for 2018.” Among those urgent queries is one I personally believe might be the King Kong of them all: is the global bond market on the verge of a meltdown?
The year 2018 is still in its infancy, but some of the hot-button questions of late-2017 have been (or are currently being) answered: Will the Bitcoin bubble burst? Will political gridlock in Washington, D.C. lead to a federal government shutdown? Will anything slow down this raging bull market?
Up, Up and Away? It’s been two weeks since we wrote on the Bitcoin bubble and whether investors should consider jumping on the train to never-never land. Our case against such action was that Bitcoin is volatile, doesn’t behave like a currency, isn’t backed, is extremely expensive, and could become banned.
As I’ve expressed in previous EVAs, Anatole Kaletsky is one of the smartest people I’ve ever met. While he’s not well known in the US, his star shines brightly in Europe where government and financial leaders seek out his guidance. He’s also the “kal” in our partner firm, Gavekal, which was recently the subject of a glowing article in Barron’s, interviewing one of my closest friends, Louis Gave.
Ben Bernanke popularized the term “global saving glut” in March 2005 when speaking to the Virginia Association of Economists in Richmond, Va. In his statement, he argued that several forces had created a high volume of global savings and that this “saving glut” helped explain the many years of historically low yields. And that was long before the Fed and its fellow central banks, through their coordinated actions, engineered the virtual extinction of interest rates!