Happy Labor Day. Instead of working, you should be enjoying these reads:

• 15 Biases That Make You Do Dumb Things With Your Money (Fool.com)
• The Big Danger: Overreliance on Stocks Quant pioneer Clifford Asness thinks bonds are expensive but don’t constitute a bubble, and stocks are a little pricey, too. (Barron’s) but see Kelly: For Investors, No Need to Duck. Just Diversify. (NYT)
• Invest with Warren Buffett’s five-year plan: Choose a portfolio you could hold for half a decade (MarketWatch)
• Four Reasons the Fed Should Start Tapering in September (Moneybeat) but see Four Reasons the Fed Shouldn’t Taper Just Yet (Moneybeat)
• Jack Dorsey’s Plan to Save America’s Struggling Cities (Businessweek)
• New York to Seattle Buyers Tap Brakes After Rates Rise (Bloomberg) see also Housing fix has strong enemies (LA Times)
• So, What Is Economics Good For? (The Ticker)
• Rx: Human Nature: How Behavioral Economics Is Promoting Better Health Around the World (Harvard Business School)
• Private Lobbyists Get Public Pensions in 20 States (Associated Press)
• Everybody Loves Cephalopods (Boing Boing)

What are you barbecuing today?


Low interest rates lead to wildly fluctuating asset prices
Source: Marginal Revolution

Category: Financial Press

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

10 Responses to “10 Labor Day Reads”

  1. hankest says:

    Coincidentally we’ll be grilling cephalopods (specifically some large cuttlefish i picked up in Chinatown), as well as some hotdogs for the cowards .

  2. flipspiceland says:

    “….Legislatures granted them access decades ago on the premise that they serve governments and the public. In many cases, such access also includes state health care benefits”.

    Lobbyists given pensions:

    By Whom??

    “Legislatures” can’t give pensions any more than whales can walk. It takes human beings to have concocted any law. WHO were ‘the legislators’ that found another way to steal from the people???

    We need names of the original perps in order to determine which political parties’ members created this outrageous boondoggle.

    Since the people are incapable of throwing out their own incumbents, we then need to penalize those still living who are getting these pensions, and THEIR NAMES.

  3. RW says:

    Obama’s Economic Team Think They Are Doing a Good Job

    I just can’t understand why so many people are letting fiscal policymakers off the hook. It’s not for lack of time or space — a considerable amount is written daily about the Fed. We ought to be skewering both politicians and economists who are standing in the way of fiscal policy measures, infrastructure in particular, that could strengthen the economy and put people back to work — both theory and the empirical evidence are clear on this point — but instead it’s mostly silence. …

    NB: I resisted apocalyptic interpretation for a long time but increasingly I am coming to believe that what we are witnessing is not simply an intellectual failure among America’s elites, an inability to conceptualize solutions to problems, but a kind of moral collapse: a narrowing, even a denial, of responsibility in governance and therefore of any culpability in the ruin of fellow citizens.

    Happy Labor Day!

    • willid3 says:

      i am thinking that they did the best that could be done with what was allowed to be done. we weren’t going to be allowed to redo what happened after the great depression. the elite would not have that happen to them again. at least until it becomes readily apparent to even the most partisan that every one has been taken on a ride. considering we were headed into a much worse situation than the great depression. we have done well. though it could be said that what existed back in 2001 is where are today. the only difference is the lack of a credit bubble, and most of us dont want to go down that credit debacle again. jobs were plentiful (but if you took out the housing boom jobs, they really werent). incomes were stagnant and had been for a long time. so short of blowing up another bubble, just what is going to get us out of this mess? with customers (aka workers) not exactly feeling confident) companies dont have a lot of buying customers. and it doesnt seem like any one really cares as long as they get theirs

  4. farmera1 says:

    They are down to using duct tape and “special material” (aka bubble gum????) to stop radio active leaks at Fukushima. There must be a SNL skit in there some where.

    The Situation Keeps Getting Worse At Fukushima

    “Workers tightened 12 bolts to stop the leak and bolstered the repair using special material and plastic tape.”

  5. Jojo says:

    Economic snapshot | Wages Incomes and Wealth
    Low-wage Workers Are Older Than You Think: 88 Percent of Workers Who Would Benefit From a Higher Minimum Wage Are Older Than 20, One Third Are Over 40
    By David Cooper and Dan Essrow | August 28, 2013

    It is a common myth that very low-wage workers–workers who would see a raise if the minimum wage were increased–are mostly teenagers. The reality is that raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour would primarily benefit older workers. 88 percent of workers who would be affected by raising the minimum wage are at least 20 years old, and a third of them are at least 40 years old.

    * The average age of affected workers is 35 years old;
    * 88 percent of all affected workers are at least 20 years old;
    * 35.5 percent are at least 40 years old;
    * 56 percent are women;
    * 28 percent have children;
    * 55 percent work full-time (35 hours per week or more);
    * 44 percent have at least some college experience.


  6. Jojo says:

    People in Columbus’ Time Did Not Think the World Was Flat
    Melissa May 8, 2013

    In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue… with a whole lot of maps and information about the very round Earth. Contrary to popular belief, not only did Columbus realize the world was round, so did his contemporaries. In fact, it was so well accepted that daring seafarers had been exploring the Atlantic for hundreds of years before Columbus’ time. Without a doubt, men of the early Renaissance knew the world was round, and that the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria were in no danger of sailing over the edge.

    The ancients were well aware the world was a sphere. Pythagoras (6th century B.C.) is generally credited with having first suggested a round Earth. Aristotle (4th century B.C.) agreed and supported the theory with observations such as that the southern constellations rise higher in the sky when a person travels south. He also noted that during a lunar eclipse, the Earth’s shadow is round. Eratosthenes (3rd century B.C., head librarian at the Library of Alexandria) built on their ideas and calculated the circumference of the Earth with remarkable accuracy at about 252,000 stadia. Depending on which stadion measurement he was using, his figure was either just 1% too small or 16% too large; many scholars think it likely that he was using the Egyptian stadion (157.5 m), being in Egypt at the time, which would make his estimate about 1% to small… remarkable.


  7. rd says:

    I am waiting for the massive economic collapse Paul Farrell has been predicting so that long interest rates plunge further. That will cause the bond portion of my portfolio to approach the asymptote and potentially reach infinite value.


      • rd says:

        Actually, I was aware of that. The problem of pricing bonds at very low interest rates has been part of my head-scratching over portfolio allocations over the past couple of years as we left almost all historical data sets behind with the low short and long-term rates. If the upper and lower trend lines for long-term interest rates continue continue on the path they have followed for three decades, we would only be a handfui of years away from your chart, so it doesn’t seem reasonable to assume that these trendlines will continue for much longer. I was surprised that they continued for the past two years. I have also been surprised that your little graph was the first time I have seen anybody in the financial sector point out the obvious of how much bond prices can shoot up if these long-term trend lines continue.

        It has been difficult to figure out the interaction between the Fed pushing negative real interest rates during a recovery and the theses that the columnists like Farrell (and the Zero Hedge contributors among others) write headlines about.

        In the end, I have focused on broadly diversified bond funds keeping durations in the 3 to 5 year range so that the bonds can still provide some diversification to stocks while still proving income close to inflation.

        BTW – folks like Henry Blodgett came out with heart-baring mea culpas when they shifted perspectives on their history in the financial business. I don’t think a lot of others, like Paul Farrell, ever did the same so it would take a fair amount of effort to try to sort out when the switch from astrology to rational approaches occurred in his advice history.