Skip to main content

Reverse Bond Vigilantism -- How is that austerity thing working out for you?

Let me see if I get this correctly: Monetary and fiscal austerity reigns over Europe like Napoleon. And beyond to the UK. So what is happening to sovereign bond yields? They are down, right?

In rough numbers, and for 10 years unless noted:

Spain 3 month over 5%
German auction fails by 40%, yields rising
Austria 4%
France 4%
Belgium 5%
Italy 7%
Spain 7%
Portugal 12% if I am reading Bloomberg correctly
Greece 30% ibid

While the risk premium is rising surely just because the Euro zone is currently so dysfunctional, clearly the bond vigilantes are not driving up rates because they think the economies will boom, not even the core economies.

Thus, can this be the last time we have to hear about how austerity must be invoked to please the bond vigilantes? Please? And focus on what they care about, which is growth (since they are after all Keynesians). And then we can fight the correct fight, which is over the meme of austerity-led growth. That one is easy to win. Nope, not even Canada. Sorry.

Update: From Tim Duy at Fed Watch, looks like Eurozone industrial production is tanking, leading growth forecasts down. The blue line headed almost straight down is the result of austerity, and doesn't look like growth to me. This chart also indicates US decoupling from the coming Eurozone depression may be difficult.


Popular posts from this blog

What is the 'Classical Dichotomy'?

A few brief comments on Brexit and the postmortem of the European Union

Another end of the world is possible
There will be a lot of postmortems for the European Union (EU) after Brexit. Many will suggest that this was a victory against the neoliberal policies of the European Union. See, for example, the first three paragraphs of Paul Mason's column here. And it is true, large contingents of working class people, that have suffered with 'free-market' economics, voted for leaving the union. The union, rightly or wrongly, has been seen as undemocratic and responsible for the economics woes of Europe.

The problem is that while it is true that the EU leaders have been part of the problem and have pursued the neoliberal policies within the framework of the union, sometimes with treaties like the Fiscal Compact, it is far from clear that Brexit and the possible demise of the union, if the fever spreads to France, Germany and other countries with their populations demanding their own referenda, will lead to the abandonment of neoliberal policies. Aust…

A brief note on Venezuela and the turn to the right in Latin America

So besides the coup in Brazil (which was all but confirmed by the last revelations, if you had any doubts), and the electoral victory of Macri in Argentina, the crisis in Venezuela is reaching a critical level, and it would not be surprising if the Maduro administration is recalled, even though right now the referendum is not scheduled yet.

The economy in Venezuela has collapsed (GDP has fallen by about 14% or so in the last two years), inflation has accelerated (to three digit levels; 450% or so according to the IMF), there are shortages of essential goods, recurrent energy blackouts, and all of these aggravated by persistent violence. Contrary to what the press suggests, these events are not new or specific to left of center governments. Similar events occurred in the late 1980s, in the infamous Caracazo, when the fall in oil prices caused an external crisis, inflation, and food shortages, which eventually, after the announcement of a neoliberal economic package that included the i…