Skip to main content

One more week and it will be all over...maybe

It certainly looks like the presidential election will be over in a week (joke), although the fight for highest office is certain to continue.  Already the "impeachment" phase against Clinton has started -- it will be Benghazi, it will be the selection of supreme court justice, it will be the emails it will be a continued civil war between the White House and Congress.

The GOP's "decision" to select Trump as the candidate for the presidency remains one of the most mystifying outcome of the GOP's primary season; Trump is not really a Republican -- DJT is for DJT, and very little else, has a limited grasp of reality and zero understanding of foreign affaires -- some with say that he has zero understanding of domestic policy too!  In fact, Trump is the kind of guy the Democrats were praying to have as an opponent.  Reasonably, it was the GOP's turn to hold the highest office, but the 12 that ran for the GOP few had the "mettle" required for higher office.  Possible Rubio, maybe one or two others, but by and large the GOP's "deep bench" was largely unelectable because they could not or would not be appealing to the country's swing voters.

DJT represented the worse of the party, driving down to the lowest common denominator.  DJT was unbeatable (in the primaries) because he spoke frankly of the GOP's dog whistles that has been the party's mantra for the past 40 years.  The GOP was further damaged by both its swing to the far right, and by its own decision to required absolutism by all its members.  In government you rarely get what you want, because others wants something different.  For the past 8 years (at least) the GOP has been governed by absolutist principles -- it's my way or I shoot everybody".

So the first 100 days of Clinton's presidency will be marked by absolute non-cooperation from Congress, because the GOP has (probably) decided that the only strategy worth following is non-cooperation and sabotage.  They will block all of Clinton's governing moves, whatever her and her administration are for they will be against.  They will salt the earth to make sure that no one can achieve anything.

At the same time, within the GOP civil war is certain to emerge.  First, DJT is not done, even after the election!  He's certain to extract his revenge from the GOP and its members.  Fox News is now the enemy, as is half of talk radio.  Independently of how hard Clinton's job will be that of Paul Ryan will be almost impossible -- unfortunately for the Freedom Caucus he also irreplaceable because no one in his right mind will want that job!  This may sound ridiculous, but think back two years ago when he first took the job!  No one else was up to do it, no one else wanted it.  it will probably kill any chance of Ryan bidding (and winning) the primaries for the 2020 presidential elections, that should give pause to any contender.

The impact of this on the global economy cannot be underestimated.  The immobilism of the US administration, its inability to reach the minimum of coordination -- think of Congress' action after the Zika epidemic started in Florida -- with its impact on pregnancy... yes that's right absolutely nothing was done.  The number of pregnancy at risk keep on rising, and with the Republican administration in Florida -- the abortion solution is at times impossible.  The US government is unable to address problems of public health, instead we were treated to more votes to cancel or terminated Obamacare...because the first 39 votes didn't work, the next one will be the winner!

The one good thing is that the transition between the Obama administration and that of Clinton should be easy and seamless.  I would not be surprised if Congress tried (in the dead duck season) to start impeachment proceedings before Clinton can take over the office of President.  There are voters to convince for the midterms in 2018 that will require that red meat, after all, all of the GOP has said over and over that Clinton should either be in Jail or before a firing squad!

For investor the winning of the White House by the Democrats is a good thing -- usually the stock market improves during a Democrat administration and collapses under a Republican one.  Cause and effect here are not in question -- It is possible that the GOP President in the past inherited a moribund economy -- although the signs are not pointing that direction (there continues to be warning of US dollar devaluation [its never been as high], or of run away inflation [ditto], but these are the usual scare tactics of the GOP supporters).

Yes the US economy has gone through eight years of economic growth -- maybe not the most robust but still positive.  It gives some hope for the future of a Clinton administration -- but the US system seems to indicated systemic long term decline!  Who knows, maybe we will have Secession from the red states -- maybe there will be rebellion from some of the crazier elements...who knows, but one thing for sure, the antagonism exhibited by the GOP towards a Clinton administration is nothing short of a disaster for the republic (and not in a good way), because it makes the whole government apparatus ineffectual and will force decisions to be taken in other ways -- that fall short of the democratic process (presidential decree etc etc).


Popular posts from this blog

Trucker shortage? No a plan to allow driverless rigs

There are still articles on how America is running out of truckers -- and that its a huge problem, except its not a problem, if it was a problem salaries would rise to so that demand would clear. Trucking is one of those industry where the vast majority of participants are owner/operators and therefore free agents.

Salaries and cost are extremely well know, "industry" complains that there are not enough truckers, yet wages continue to fall... Therefore there are still too many truckers around, for if there was a shortage of supply prices would rise, and they don't.

What there is though is something different; there is a push to allow automatic rigs to "operate across the US", so to encourage the various authorities to allow self driving rigs you talk shortage and hope that politicians decided that "Well if people don't want to work, lets get robots to do the work" or words to that effect.

This has nothing to do with shortage of drivers, but every…

Every punter says oil prices are on the rise: Oil hits $48/bbl -- lowest since September 2016

What the hell?

How could this be, punters, advisors, investment bankers all agreed commodity prices  in general and oil prices in particular are on the rise...its a brave new era for producers and exporters -- finally the world is back and demand is going through the roof, except not so much!

What happened?  Well energy is complicated, the world operates in a balance -- 30 days of physical reserves is about all we've got (seriously) this is a just in time business.  So the long term trend always gets hit by short term variations.

Global production over the past 12 months has risen by somewhat less than 1.5% per annum.  As the world market changes production becomes less energy intensive (maybe), but the reality is that the world is growing more slowly -- America Q4 GDP growth was around 1.9% (annualized) Europe is going nowhere fast (the GDP growth in Germany is overshadowed by the lack of growth in France, Italy, Spain (lets say 27 Euro members generated a total GDP growth of 1.2…

Paying for research

This morning I was reading that CLSA -- since 2013 proudly owned by CITIC -- was shutting down its American equity research department -- 90 people will be affected!

Now the value of a lot of research is limited, that is not to say that all research is bad. In fact, I remember that GS's Asia Aerospace research was considered the bible for the sector.  Granted, there was little you could do with the research since the "buy" was for Chinese airlines...that were state owned.  Still it was a vey valuable tool in understanding the local dynamics.  It seems that the US has introduced new legislation that forces brokers to "sell" their research services!  Figures of $10,000 an hour have been mentioned...

Now, research can be sold many times; if GS has 5000/6000 clients they may sell the same research 300x or 400x (I exaggerate) but this is the key -- Those who buy the research are, I presume, prohibited from giving it away or selling it, at the same time the same rese…