Greenspan’s Long-Lost Thesis

Barron’s Jim McTague had a chance to review one of only two existing copies of Greenspan’s 1977 NYU Doctoral thesis. Astonishingly, it focuses on Housing booms and busts.

Some highlights:

• A discussion of soaring housing prices and their effect on consumer spending;

• An anticipation of a bursting housing bubble. Greenspan even wrote: "There is no perpetual motion machine which generates an ever-rising path for the prices of homes."

• A failure to anticipate a broader housing mania spilling into the general economy;

• Its doubtful anyone in 1977 could forsee the securitization process of subprime loans, including Greenspan. He did write, however, "a sharp break in prices of existing homes would pull down the prices of new homes to the level of construction costs or below, inducing a sharp contraction in building."

• The thesis shows the future Fed boss was focused on housing early in his career. Barron’s notes this casts doubt on his assertions about being surprised by the impact of this decade’s housing mania.

• In the introduction to Greenspan’s thesis, he noted that homeowners were refinancing for larger amounts than their original mortgage, in essence monetizing increases in their home’s market value and spending the excess cash on goods and services. This broke new ground in 1977, as the economic models at the time were not tracking this source of income.

Fascinating stuff, Jim . . .

>

Sources:
Looking at Greenspan’s Long-Lost Thesis
JIM MCTAGUE
Barron’s, APRIL 28, 2008
http://online.barrons.com/article/SB120917419049046805.html

Category: Federal Reserve, Real Estate

Immoral Hazard

Category: Federal Reserve

UBS $37B Write Down, Part II: Compensation

Category: Corporate Management, Derivatives, Wages & Income

Report on UBS’ $37 Billion Writedown

Category: Corporate Management, Credit, Derivatives, Finance, Fixed Income/Interest Rates, M&A

Friday Evening Jazz: Dexter Gordon

FNJ has a guest DJ tonite: BondDaddy is in the house!

Dexter Gordon is one of the greatest tenor sax players. He had a strong tone and incredible sense of melody. Some players like Sonny Rollins and Joe Henderson had a slippery sense of time; their phrases speed up and slow down, moving within the rythm section’s accompaniment. Not Dexter. Dex’s time was rock solid, never wavering. The rythm section had to accompany his time.

Our_man_in_parisHis playing is incredibly melodic, easily followed by the listener. Ideas naturally morphed from one to the other, always following a logical pattern. However, he was also able to surprise listeners with a run into upper chordal extensions.

His playing provides a logical link between Parker and Coltrane. Dex used many ideas from Parker, but played them with a tone that was deep, bold and soulful.  His tone provides the link to Coltrane, who also favored a deep and rich tenor tone.

Gordon swung — and swung hard. If your feet are not tapping within 8 bars of his starting to play, you’re just not listening.

Our Man in Paris:
This be-bop session is a meeting between three of the most influential
musicians of the forties. The rhythms crackle, the solos fly; Our Man
In Paris is essential Dexter. A nice compilation of standards.

HomecomingHomecoming: Live at the Village Vanguard. Dex lived in Amsterdam for about 10 years, and this was the album be made when he came back. Very cool set. Woody Shaw is on Trumpet, and the two work really well together. THis is Dexter at the very top of his game (and probably one of the top 25 live jazz albums of all time).

He also starred in the Round Midnight, probably the best jazz movie ever made

Go:  Its been widely reported Gordon himself considered this his greatest achievement. Brimming with conviction and poise, Gordon’s gentle-giant sax carries itself with a sort of graceful edge that is difficult to emulate. Never has anyone made the diminished scale sound so musical.

Ballads

Ballads: This is a compilation of his ballads (duh), and he could play just beautifully on these. Gordon delivers his almost sleepy and smoke-filled solos with real grace. Some of the most romantic playing you will every hear.

~~~

>

Videos after the jump

>

Read More

Category: Digital Media, Friday Night Jazz, Music

Synonyms for Recession

Category: Economy

Impact of Eliminating Uptick Rule

Category: Options, Technical Analysis, Trading

Bagehot’s Lessons for the Fed

Category: Credit, Economy, Federal Reserve, Fixed Income/Interest Rates, Inflation

Is the Fed Causing a Global Food Crisis?

Category: Currency, Economy, Federal Reserve, Inflation, Politics, Psychology

Will the Fed Pause After the Next Cut?

Category: Economy, Federal Reserve, Fixed Income/Interest Rates, Inflation