Saturday, September 23, 2017

This is how to be a bitchy economist

BBC - scientists develop new antibody that attacks 99% of HIV strains. Scientists at Harvard and MIT have helped develop an antibody that basically destroys HIV.

Meanwhile, macroeconomists at Harvard and MIT have written some really crappy books and whored their asses out to the Koch Brothers.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Here's how you do Halloween

BBC - 'decapitated man' halloween display in Tennessee sparks 911 call. With a helpful image of what a 'decapitated man' halloween display looks like:

With a very good-natured response from the police, believe it or not!:
Greene County TN Sheriff's Department wrote on Facebook: "ATTENTION EVERYONE!!! For those of you driving on Chuckey Pike in Greene County: THIS IS A HALLOWEEN DECORATION!

"Do NOT call 911 reporting a dead body. Instead, congratulate the homeowner on a great display."
I guess the homeowner must be white, otherwise the cops would have murdered him and gunned down his family.

Friday evening news

Gotta do a load of econometrics homework this weekend so I don't bomb on the first test.

But first, here's the news!:

Pole Mic Spains - cash is oversold. This guy's even a weirder weirdo than Klendathu Capitalist, but if you're going to get your market opinions from someone it may as well be a weirdo.

PIIE - the Fed buys into secular stagnation. Trust me when I say this is the most important market story right now:
The FOMC's estimate of the so-called neutral federal funds rate had declined from 4¼ percent a few years ago to 3 percent earlier this year and is now only 2¾ percent. With the federal funds rate currently near 1¼ percent, the Fed is almost halfway through its tightening cycle (assuming that the economy does not significantly overheat in the meantime). Moreover, it is possible that the projected neutral rate will decline further, as the FOMC ponders research that suggests the long-run neutral rate might be as low as 2 percent.
Their Fed funds rate has been going up slower than their estimate of the neutral rate has been coming down. So about a year from now, they'll have raised rates up to 2% at the same time as they'll be estimating that the neutral rate has dropped below 2%... which means a Volcker recession in 2020.

Noahpinion - let's whine about the future. I agree entirely:
Our modern society is totally wired and connected, but also totally unequal - "the future is here, it's just not evenly distributed", as Gibson was fond of saying. Hackers, cyberwarfare, and online psyops are a regular part of our political and economic life. Billionaires build spaceships and collaborate with the government to spy on the populace, while working-class people live out of shipping crates and drink poison water. Hobbyists are into body modifications and genetic engineering, while labs are researching artificial body parts and brain-computer interfaces. The jetpack is real, but there's only one of it, and it's owned by a rich guy. Artificial intelligences trade stocks and can beat humans at Go, deaf people can hear, libertarians and criminals funnel billions of dollars around the world with untraceable private crypto-money. A meme virus almost as crazy as the one in Snow Crash swept an insane man to the presidency of the United States, and in Texas you can carry a sword on the street like a street samurai in Neuromancer. There are even artificial pop stars and murderous cyborg super-athletes.

We are, roughly, living in the world the cyberpunks envisioned.
Of course, like any article, it gets better after he says "but...".

Niskanen Center - black liberty matters. A nice big article on how libertarians are actually closet racists, because all they really want is liberty for white people.

Vox - a new study debunks one of the arguments against basic income. One more win for fully automated luxury gay space communism!:

Freitag Deutscherfederalelektionvideo

In honour of the election, let's evilly culturally appropriate the Germans:

Thursday, September 21, 2017

RUSSIA DECLARES WAR!!!! against... wait, who?

BBC News - All of Russia declares war against Morgan Freeman. I enshitten not thee:

Russia has aimed its entire media arsenal at the veteran Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman over his appearance in a video accusing the Kremlin of waging war on America during last year's presidential election.

The video shows the Oscar winner accusing President Vladimir Putin, a known former KGB spy and kleptocrat, of launching cyber attacks and spreading false information in order to avenge the collapse of the Soviet Union.

And of course Mr He-Man Pooty-Poot the Bear Wrestler and Sometimes Bear Lover is incensed by this, kinda like how fellow kleptocrat and banana-republic dictator Rocket Man hates when you make fun of his hair and flabby face.

So He-Man Pooty-Poot the Bear Wrestler and Sometimes Bear Lover will retaliate the only way he knows how: by aiming the entire might of his failed alcoholic empire at Morgan Freeman!

Unfortunately, Pooty-Poot, the Morgan Freeman meme was here first:

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Yet more various news

Still not actively TAing yet: hopefully they can assign me a room now.

Here's fun news items:

Calculated Risk - architecture billings growth streak continues. So quit selling S&P you fucking pussies!

Tim Duy the Economics Guy - Fed may have too much faith in inflation forecasts. In which case, yet again, the Federal Reserve will cause a recession and kill thousands just so they can provide more money to the rentier class.

Reuters - Buffett calls US pessimists 'out of their minds'. Well, they're not always 'out of their minds'; sometimes they're just Russian-funded neo-Nazi propagandists. Here's Warren himself:
He noted that since Forbes created its first list of the 400 richest Americans in 1982 -- Buffett was worth just $250 million then -- some 1,500 different people have been included.

All with one thing in common.

“You don’t see any short sellers,” he said, referring to people who bet stock prices will fall.
Would you expect Pooty-Poot to be short US and long gold? Of course not, he's got his own billions stashed away in US equities, like every other tinpot dictator.

Tim Taylor - antitrust in the 1520s. Yes, once upon a time Protestantism (and by that we include Luther Himself) was against monopolies. Of course, back then Protestantism was revolutionary; now it's just another opiate propping up the kleptocracy.

Monday, September 18, 2017

NDD on real median income: YABUT

New Deal Demoncrat - 2016's new high in real median household income.

Yeah, that's fine and all.


This chart, combined with the fact that marginal propensity to consume goes down as income increases, means that household consumption still has a way to go.

Household savings, though, is hunky dory cos the rich are richer.

Thus, NDD, I'm more of a New Deal Keynesian Leftist than thou.

Proving you're stupid

All I have to say about that clown is, if you're seriously making predictions (and not just trying to fill space) by asserting there's a magical fucking 30-month cycle in the market, based on two fucking data points and utterly zero underlying mechanism, then you're pants-on-head fucking stupid and your readers have every right to waste money on your bullshit idiot newsletter.

Oh crap look what's up for Wednesday

Calculated Risk - this week's schedule. Oh crap. Janet's going to be talking on Wednesday. So the market (especially gold miners) might go haywire that afternoon.

BTW, I'd like it if the market stopped going stupid batshit haywire on days of Fed announcements: that would mean that market participants consider it enough of a non-event that they no longer feel it necessary to clear the order book beforehand or to put contextual bots in control of trades.

And that would mean they're starting to get a fucking clue.

New Deal Demoncrat likes Trump now

New Deal Demoncrat - weekly indicators. Summary:

Corporate bonds, Treasury yields, and mortgage rates have all improved enough to remain neutral, as does growth in real estate loans. The yield curve, money supply, and purchase mortgages also remain positive, as are the two more leading Chicago Fed Financial Conditions Indexes. Refinance mortgage applications are the sole negative.

Short leading indicators, including stock prices, industrial metals, the regional Fed new orders indexes, spreads, financial conditions, staffing, the US$, oil and gas prices and usage are all positive. Jobless claims nominally are neutral, but adjusted for the impact of Harvey remain very positive.

Among the coincident indicators, positives included consumer spending as measured by Johnson Redbook, steel, the TED spread, tax withholding, the Baltic Dry Index and Harpex. LIBOR remains negative. Rail was positive except for carloads ex-coal.

Despite the hurricane impacts, the economy appears in very good shape over the near term, and retains a positive tone, if more mutedly so, in the longer term.

Just a few weeks ago, though, NDD was less happy about the data. Could it be that his opinion has been changed by Trump twice dumping his own party to work with the Democrats?