We can officially call Ben Bernanke a failure when it comes to his quest of preventing a deflationary death spiral ala Japan. Deflation continues to strengthen its grip around the economies throat despite the fact that the Fed has expanded its balance sheet by trillions of dollars in an attempt to stop it. Winner? Deflation!
Gold bugs and reflation traders beware: You are about to get used and abused by the destructive power of deflation. I will explain later after showing a few examples of deflation and why it will be around for awhile.
Retail Sales Once Again Collapsed in March as the deflationary spiral deepened:
Hey Bubblevision! How are those "economic recovery" mustard seeds growing? It looks like they need a little more water!
Folks, I'm sorry but I need to take a few shots at all of the "hope/mustard seed" bubbleheads on Wall St after being forced to listen to their bullshit day after day on CNBC.
The reality here is deflation as a result of a tapped out consumer continues to rip apart the economy. The expectation in March was for retail sales to grow by .3% as the "economic recovery" was expected to continue. Oooops.. So much for that idea!: The consumer collapsed in March as retail sales dropped a stunning 1.3%.
The bullish argument that the "worst is behind us" is completely ridiculous when you look at the deepening unemployment in this country. Everyone got so excited in February after the consumer bounced back a tad. What these analysts need to realize is one month does not make a trend.
After March's horrific retail numbers, the downward trend seen over the past year is now firmly back in place. This should not be a surprise because the fundamentals have not changed. The consumer is still stuck with tapped out credit cards, a housing payment that he/she cannot afford, and a Hummer in the driveway that's about to get Repoed.
If you take a look at the the second chart: Crashing consumer demand is still outpacing reductions in production. This confirms that prices on assets will continue to collapse as oversupply continues to pressure prices.
Once deflationary collapses start they are almost impossible to stop. Why buy something today if its going to be cheaper next month? Why pay $300,000 for a house when it might be $250,000 in 6 months. This is the type of consumer behaviour that dominates when deflationary spirals begin.
I personally believe that Ben has officially lost out to deflation. The spiral has already started and accelerated. Look at the collapsing demand above! Its absolutely frightening to see how quickly things are falling apart. The consumer has virtually disappeared. All of this talk around a recovery is pure nonsense.
What pisses me off most about this whole thing is when push came to shove: The Fed bailed out the banks while doing practically nothing for "we the people".
I need to rant a little because my blood is starting to boil. It didn't have to be this way:
The Fed's biggest mistake was they spent our tax dollars in the wrong place. They basically pissed away trillions of dollars in taxpayer money by throwing it into financial institutions that were nothing but financial "black holes". The money just vanished because the institutions were so insolvent! They might as well taken the money and burned it. The result would have been the same. I mean can anyone show me one piece of positive economic growth that occured as a result of throwing hundreds of billions of dollars into AIG or Citi? Yeah I couldn't find any either.
Let me be blunt here folks:
THE FED AND TREASURY BASICALLY JUST PISSED AWAY TRILLIONS OF TAXPAYER $$$ BAILING OUT THEIR BANKING BUDDIES WITHOUT ANYTHING TO SHOW FOR IT. NOTHING! ZILCH! NADA!
THE REASON WHY WE ARE STILL FIGHTING DEFLATION IS BECAUSE NONE OF THIS MONEY WAS PLACED INTO THE "REAL ECONOMY".
IF THIS MONEY WAS THROWN TO THE TAXPAYER INSTEAD OF THE BANKS IT COULD HAVE BEEN USED TO STIMULATE REAL ECONOMIC GROWTH.
This is so fricking infuriating. This is Japan all over again folks! Its a spitting frickin image of Japan. We continue to sit here and prop up worthless banks instead of helping the millions that are losing their jobs. I mean Goldman gets to blow out earnings as a result of the Fed's gift while the taxpayer sits around and wonders how they are going to pay next months bills.
The Fed is nothing but a good 'ole boy network of bankers! They took care of their buddies versus taking care of America.
A few questions for these morons:
Why didn't the Fed use any of their balance sheet creating jobs? Why did they continually throw the money into worthless banks that then refused to lend it back to us? Not that we could afford to borrow it anyway. Who wants more credit when you are scared sh*tless that you might lose your job.
WAKE THE HELL UP BEN: LOOK AT THE CONSUMER DATA TODAY!
Could we be any more afraid? Look how little we are spending?
Do you need anymore proof to realize that your stupid recovery plan of bailing out the banks while ignoring the people is a total failure? Do we need to go down this road just like Japan did for 8 years before you realize that we no longer want credit anymore? Jesus Christ: Wake up!!!!
This country is going down the tubes as you continue to on throw money at the banks in an attempt to "loosen" up credit so that we can lend more easily.
Hey Ben guess what? We don't want to borrow any more damn money!
How about getting us a job? Why don't you stop throwing money at the elitist pigs of this country and take care of the taxpayer for a change? The economy is going to collapse if you continue down this path. Enough already!
Inflation is coming no time soon. Production needs to collapse at an even fasterer pace in order to come more in line with the tapped out consumer.
Anyone thinking this will result in an economic recovery is simply insane. The market looked terrible today and I think the bulls got a real dose of reality once the consumer numbers came out today.
I see NO signs that things are getting better. In fact, I am more concerned that things are getting worse. Prices will do nothing but drop as long as the consumer continues to be officially on strike.
Like any union worker knows: The longer any strike lasts the uglier it gets.