Outside the Box, February 2018

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The Middle of an Era

February 28, 2018

“We see through a glass darkly,” said the Apostle Paul. That goes double when we are talking about what the future holds. There are times when I think my future-viewing lens is utterly opaque. When I investigate why my forecasts are sometimes off the mark, I generally find that I am trying to predict the short term, which is impossible, or am succumbing to the all-too-human psychological tendency to project a recent trend into the far future. Seeing as how I doubt that I would want us to move...

QE and Its Apologists

February 21, 2018

My friend Tom Bentley sends me political rants every day and then attaches an article from someone. Today’s is from Brian Wesbury, a brilliant economist who packs a thoughtful free-market punch. I mention Tom because I want to also pass on you the note he sent me this morning, introducing Brian. Here’s an excerpt (and Tom’s full note appears below, as a preface to Brian’s piece):

As we continue to suffer under the blizzard of bullshit about everything put out by both sides, and hugely...

Kill the Quants

February 7, 2018

In the past few days we have heard endless explanations for the market’s big “Oops!” and the return of volatility. The commentary has centered on the Fed and its sister central banks as they begin to batten down the hatches on inflation and trim their balance sheets (prematurely, in my view).

In the midst of all the hoopla – and for a long time before the recent Day of Reckoning – my good friend Doug Kass has been something of a voice shouting at us from the wildnerness, with the resounding...