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Hi Elaine, keep a close eye on Citadel. The credit curve for that name has inverted, often a sign of imminent default.

Buffalo Ken

I haven't read all of the article yet, but since you mentioned trying to "germinate" some cartoonry for derivatives, I figured I'll throw out some thoughts that may or may not be of any worth....oh well.

OK, best I can tell, the derivatives are like a way of trying to put risk "off to the side" or in an imaginary bag and then "pretending" the risk went away (the individuals doing the pretending are the ones whe have been benefiting financially from derivatives so far - the rest of us couldn't really even pretend about them because they have not been in the "public consciousness". Anyhow, the pretending should be over by now because the risk never went away, in fact, the risk was simply being lumped together and actually concentrated. Now because the risk is lumped together, it collectively ends up being more risky on a large-scale. Had the individual risks been kept separate they would have manifested and then been dealt with individually, but instead the derivatives were utilized as a way of "putting off risk" and "profiting from this" with the main effect being to "exponentially increase the risk" over time for everyone. I mean everyone.

The derivatives are mainly paper creations of imagination, but per the contractual terms on the paper the derivatives do connect with real world physical items (houses, treasures, equipment, commodities, other derivatives, etc.) The flawed logic of the derivatives (or maybe not if you think derivatives have been "great") now is not only causing financial havoc, but it creates a huge impetus that highlights flawed logic in other areas and within other institutions of power and influence. Many of these "areas" and "intitutions" are flawed for many reasons not the least of which is that they allowed (and perhaps encouraged) the "Derivatives Beast" to be formed and to grow immensely. Many of them did this for short-term personal gain.

From an "imaginary" standpoint the "Derivative Beasts" might as well be infinite at least when compared to the suface of planet earth and the real world wealth it presently offers for humanity.

I think of it in some ways as "potential energy" that has been slowly but exponentially building (a spring being pushed to the limit perhaps or a water ready to go over the fall...). This potential energy may tap into other sources of "grand" energy, and may even be sufficient to activate even more potent forces. This could be an opportunity or it could be an uncontrolled release of energy beyond the capacity of the planet. I vote for the opportunity route myself.

Well, I want to read the rest of this. Sorry if the above didn't make much sense. It does to me...sort of!



No suprise here: Credit-Rating Companies `Sold Soul,' Employees Said

Employees at Moody's Investors Service told executives that issuing dubious creditworthy ratings to mortgage-backed securities made it appear they were incompetent or ``sold our soul to the devil for revenue,'' according to e-mails obtained by U.S. House investigators.

Jerome Fons, a former managing director of credit policy at New York-based Moody's, told lawmakers that originators of structured securities ``typically chose the agency with the lowest standards, engendering a race to the bottom in terms of rating quality.''

Lost Horizon

Elaine, Roubini was saying almost exactly what you've been writing about for so long.

Amazing, he should give you at least the tip of his hat.

He is now getting alot of MSM ink.



Hmmm, market is down. And Denninger at Market Ticker is getting dire:

Absent something extraordinary, we are going to crash this morning in the stock market.

For real.

No, what you saw earlier this month wasn't a crash.

This is a crash.


Elevator music for Paulson and Bernake to list to while we go down today: Nirvana - The Man Who Sold The World

Oh no, not me
We never lost control
You're face to face
With The Man Who Sold The World

And the Bear Stearns move isn't looking so good now: Fed Marks Down Bear Stearns Assets by $2.7 Billion


"Big Box Mart"...



I found it interesting that the favoured diet of the "Derivatives Beast" is exactly the same as that of the owners of the Federal Reserve Bank.
"Future Taxes, and the Wealth of Empires".

Could the Fed and some of its sponsors be devoured by their own creation?


You were right! You understood what no other blogger did.
You referred to hell money. I thought you might get a kick out of this, from Wiki:

"Hell bank notes are a special and more modern form of joss paper, an afterlife monetary paper offering used in traditional Chinese ancestor veneration...Hell Bank Notes are also known for their outrageously large denominations, ranging from $10,000, $100,000, $1,000,000 or even $500,000,000. In Singapore, it is extremely common to find 10 billion dollar banknotes in shops. On every bill, it features an image of the Jade Emperor, the presiding monarch of heaven in Taoism and his Western signature (Yu Wong, or Yuk Wong) countersigned by Yanluo, King of Hell (Yen Loo). On the back of each bill, it features a portrait of the bank of Hell."

And the best part:

"The most well known and commonly sold Hell Note is the $10,000 note that is styled after the old United States Federal Reserve Note."

Hell money is our new currency!

ziff house

I am still getting the feeling that the US is coming out of this with its hegemony intact. Notice that thanks to 'spreading the risk' and 'globalization' most of the worlds other economies are getting hit worse than the US!!
As for Japan we all knew years ago that 0% yen was just a subsiduary of the US printing press, yen = dollar.
And as for the anti -gold people , where do you put cash?I notice most of the discussion on Denningers is about which bank is safe , good luck!

PK Scott

Hi Elaine,

The gnomes got one thing right, this trainwreck is going to effect everybody, whether they participated in the orgy of debt or not.

Unfortunately they got the part WRONG where they said they could fix it.

The BIG PICTURE is mesmerizing. Like watching the holocaust of 9/11 on teevee, but peoople need to understand this has PROFOUND immplications on them as individuals.

So far the only people who have felt the IMMEDIATE effect are the ones who are losing their houses and jobs, and the minor pain of rising food prices and previously gas.

Economic collapse (maybe more correctly disintigration) for a global economy will bring real pain and suffering with it.

Today we read about Santa Monica cutting essential services since they are broke and cannot borrow to sustain them. Ships are not loading and shipping goods because shippers fear that Letters of Credit will not be honored when goods arrive. That's OK if you are talking about iPods and flat screen TVs but less good if it is an essential commodity. We are really circling the drain here.

The recessionary spiral is less money spent on consumption, job cuts, less consumption, more job cuts, etc...

We squandered our savings, stripped our productive base, and are not self sufficient in natural resources. Our future labor and lives are being thrown into the mouth of the beast because THAT is what real money is after you have no savings, no resources, and no means of production.

If it all collapses or disintigrates or whatever the people who crawl out of the rubble first are the people with natural resources (or control of them), means of production, and capital. The ones with these capabilities are the new masters of the universe.

In a sense it doesn't matter who that is beyond the fact that it ain't us.

PK Scott

Hello Ken,

Hell money is also called hyper inflation.


Another good read at Counterpunch. By Mike Whitney this time. It encapsulates much of what Elanine has been saying for ages.



Dont be fooled by $2.50 gasoline. USA is bankrupt as Eliane has been saying for years. This is the END of Dollar Hegemony. There are serious issues at the ports with respect to manifests and lines of credit. There will be SHORTAGES of certain things. Plus, the foreigners will now attack the dollar and T-bills. This dollar surge is not a FLIGHT TO QUALITY. It is BANKRUPTCY RECEIVORSHIP!!!

Senator Approxmire

"like a way of trying to put risk "off to the side" or in an imaginary bag and then "pretending" the risk went away"

Google search: "TRC Exit Strategy AIG Environmental Insurance" for more fun! (TRC = TRR on NYSE) USEPA will be thrilled, no doubt. Multiply these by hundreds at least for the number of other contractors and projects getting that insurance from them and then multiply by the $ in limits of liability on the aggregate of all such insurance over the years = $billions in a relatively tiny niche.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

When England went bankrupt, there was this period from 1919 to 1929 when the global trade basis was vacillating between the pound and the dollar with the dollar winning more and more trade transactions.

Then, when the pound was rapidly becoming useless, the British dropped the gold peg right after Germany declared bankruptcy and refused to pay any more reparations.

This caused a RUN ON US DOLLARS as all the remaining trade rushed to the only secure gold currency on earth: the US dollar.

This destabilized our own currency and by 1933, we had to drop the previous gold peg and start a new one! Our entire banking system collapsed.

But we came out of the Great Depression much stronger than anyone on earth due to our lovely tariffs and barriers. Otherwise, all nations would have flooded us with their exports based on the new dollar!

I know that some of the Chinese leadership listened to me when I discussed the false reading of the Great Depression that blamed the US tariffs for the English/German/French bankruptcies. I try to hammer into everyone's heads that ALL nations MUST EXERT SOVEREIGNTY when there is an economic meltdown. Not the opposite.

Any nation stupid enough to try to keep any dying status quo alive when an empire dies like ours is dying, gets destroyed. For we can thrash about quite nicely. We are big! The sun is setting on our global empire just like it did when it set on England.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

Thanks for the reminder of one of the many derivatives schemes which were launched to make money off of cleaning up the environment. This was the actual beginning of the beast: a woman who was a computer genius thought it would be a lot easier if people played betting games on risks connected with costs and overhead problems, with pollution CREDIT TRANSFERS.

These 'credit transfers' were when a rich country would 'buy' the amount of pollution a poor country would have it if were industrialized, and then use this invisible thing to pollute! While claiming, they were NOT polluting!

I hated that system from the get-go and periodically return to it to snarl and snap. Well, it has destroyed the global economy, thank you. And did absolutely nothing about pollution reduction in the real world.

Big Bang

Nice article, have a look at the Elliot Wave guys from the late 90's and "Conquer the Crash" 2002.

One thing that you might also want to consider is that China is about to implode, the fuse has been lit and big banks and their cooked books of non-performing loans are going to consume China's foreign reserves - it's not only the toy companies that are going broke over there as we speak.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

If China 'goes broke' we go down the bottomless pit. They are the creditors, after all.

Now, Big Bang, list for me the names of all the people who are going to buy our Treasuries, our blooming National Debt and suck down all the dollars the Fed is printing out of thin air.

Eh? I hear crickets chirping.

Big Bang

Funny you should mention the crickets, they are one of my favourite pets, which I keep to remind me of things and they are chirping now.

Who will buy US Treasuries, why the World of course, and they are. With Argentina and Russia on the verge of default, the carry trade unwind and the Fundies deleveraging killing the commodity currencies the only safe currency left is the USD. Go figure, but you know what this is part of the great plan. The panic stricken mob will stampede into the canyon, towards the safety of the fort USD but not noticing that the end of the canyon actually fell off the cliff and the safety of the USD was but a mirage. The rug will be pulled, this is the plan, the crickets told me so.


Elaine, that is a fascinating connection between derivative schemes and pollution credit transfers. If you have already covered it I would appreciate an archives link. If not, considering it as a future discussion would probably be read by many with great interest.


On a different note (though similar), the Chicago Fed has reported that the economy has suffered a significant downturn this past September.

If you look at the front page of their report (pdf) the decline is so steep, it looks like a free-fall collapse! Perhaps you, Elaine, could do a report devoted to this.




"Plus, the foreigners will now attack the dollar and T-bills."

Take a note of this: the Gnomes have been NAKED SHORT SELLING Treasuries! Now there is a delivery failure of them.


Naked short selling and float and reserve plays are causing a record 'failures to deliver' in the US Treasuries markets. Some of this may be a 'kiting' scheme in which the sellers are playing an aribtrage against the slight fees and penalties versus returns on price distortions and extremes in volatility.

Or it might be a case of selling and using the same thing so many times as collateral that you don't really know what is your actual condition, solvent or insolvent. We can think of several (roughly nine) derivative and instrument laden banks that are utterly insolvent if forced to deliver their net obligations.

The Fed cannot even regulate its own products among its own dealer circles. What could possibly possess anyone to believe that they can do this with any other product in a larger, less exclusive market?

PK Scott

You might want to contemplate what those "things" are there there might be shortages of.

I was in New Zealand a few years back (lovely country, nice people) and I had to pay MORE for crummy New Zealand apples in a grocery store in Aukland than I was paying at a grade A apple at a crappy little SuperS that was the ONLY grocery store in the rural town of 5000 or so where I lived in Texas.

THATS the power of the world reserve currency and the biggest consumer market on the planet. I paid less for an apple that was shipped literaly half way around the world than I paid for it in the country that it was grown in.

We grow lots and lots of food here (yeah), but if the dollar craters we are going to be SELLING a lot of it for whatever currency we need to to buy all the MANUFACTURED crap we import AND oil.

The British Empire wouldn't let the colonies build up a manufacturing base. They wanted the RAW materials that they imported to Britain and then manufactured into products (added value) and sold them back to the colonies. It was a neat system for keeping the colonies poor and enriching the empire. This was part of what the Revolutionary War was fought about (and TAXES). Does anyone see the irony here?


Another source on naked short selling T-bills:



Elaine, thanks for the earlier tip on the Japanese Yen. I wish I could have bought more. By the way, it's very easy to buy through FOREX.

All of our institutions have utterly failed us in this crisis. The politicians are bought and strive to bail-out the status quo. Homeland security attacks our freedoms by offering insecurity.

Most of our religions are miserable failures in pursuing zionism and religious hatred instead of reminding us about usury lending and the need to treat others as we want to be treated.

We are constantly divided by race and religion. The solution seems to always be more social engineering that compromise our freedoms.

The globalists attempt to remove freedom as far from the individual as possible - to an ever larger group. This they claim is an evolution of society to consolidate all power and choice in the hands of the few.

It seems at times like the problems are overwhelming in our world. But, I want to make sure everyone understands that we have an alternative to tyranny and corrupt institutions.

I hope we will all unite in striking a blow to the beast. We need to abolish the Federal Reserve in the US. When the Fed falls, the other corrupt institutions will either reform or fail like dominoes.

On November 22, 2008 there will be protests at all 38 Fed banks and offices. We all need to participate as this will just be the kick-off for an ongoing effort to educate people as to where our money comes from. When people begin to understand that we have no control over the fed; they will at once begin to realize the fed controls us.


Ron Paul gives his take on the Greenspan congressional hearing on CNN:



We are back around the time of Lehman collapse again. total global panic in stock market.

so much for $3T bailout. Iceland, Ukraine and Argentina are gone. Russia and Korea are being attacked by wall street pirates. (I swear we would better off if Russia nuking the remaining hedge funds using real bomb)

...watch the global stock market and interbank rate. they are in even worst condition than after Lehman now.

They have to nullify the credit swap! or else we would all be gone.

PK Scott

Watch for the "witching hour." There have been steep sell offs of the stock market at the end of the trading day on Fridays lately when the overall day was down.
Dow was down about 400 points last I looked. If it closes below 8000 some smart people think it will head A LOT lower.


I hear that Panama is really nice this time of decade. Funny thing, Panama has no central bank, no currency control laws and no inflation. Must be why there are so many illegal panamanian immigrants in the USA.... errr why there are so few maybe.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

Panama is now owned by the Chinese. Being creditors, they can buy and hold. We are having a global fire sale of our own sovereignty, our currency and our political power.

By the way, I don't like crickets that much. I feed them to the chickens and the duckies. Who love to eat them.

As for Big Bang's answer to my question, who is this 'world' that will buy our debts once we screw up all the present debts we owe and basically tell our creditor pals to push up daisies?

Iceland won't be buying. Maybe the 'world' is Japan? Tokyo will save us?

HAHAHA. I have said repeatedly in the past when we ran a $500 billion national debt annually, 'Japan can't support the US debt alone, Japan NEEDS China and Saudi Arabia!'

So we try to hose the Bank of Japan and the government there with this year's TRILLION red ink from DC? Gads! Japan is one of the most deeply in debt nations next to the US, UK, Germany and France! This is impossible.

Blunt Force Trauma

Fingers in a bursting dam?

Not just Iceland, but the list of countries that need IMF help is growing. Seven, I believe. Kinda makes the Wall Street thievery sort of miniscule when the rest of the world's "wealth" is gone.

IMF Considers Emergency Loan Program; Iceland Gets $2 Billion (Bloomberg)



Looks like Hank has a big weekend planned for this one, hahaa: Treasury mulls insurer aid program: sources

The Treasury has used only capital powers so far to aid federally regulated institutions. But the TARP program could be used to buy sour assets from other financial companies and help them scrub their balance sheets.

MBIA Inc, the largest U.S. bond insurer, and its No. 2 rival, Ambac Financial Group Inc, met with regulators earlier this week to push for a way to tap into the federal government's bailout plan.

Buffalo Ken

OK - here is another image for the "derivatives" - they are being pushed like a vapor into a balloon with the volume of the flow increasing exponentially - the ballon, like everything else in the universe, can only handle so much pressure - the balloon is bursting (sort of like a damn) and a lot of energy is being released - stored up energy as supplied by the derivatives.

Even infinity is limited in time.....

As for crickets, I've always appreciated their chirping - but I suspect they do make good chicken feed.



Buffalo Ken

oh, sorry about that "double" peace, sometimes I edit my message as I'm typing and forget what I have at the end....

All I know is - I VOTE for opportunity as opposed to massive release of uncontrollable energy. Its so much better than wallowing in pity....or feeling everything is hopeless. I wouldn't even say this except I know folks who feel this way. How sad.

Peace again,

Blunt Force Trauma

Zi carry trade iz kaput!

Yen Rises to 13-Year High Versus Dollar as Carry Trade Unwinds

Oct. 24 (Bloomberg) -- The yen climbed to a 13-year high against the dollar as a worldwide drop in stocks encouraged investors to dump higher-yielding assets and pay back low-cost loans in Japan.

Full article:



Somebody has to calculate what happen if Yen reaches 80's. I bet those hedge fund "math" will blow up in their face.

They HAVE to shut down those hedge funds or else the entire planet will implode. We are seeing states and nation being eaten now.


Crickets, cockroaches, millipedes, they all scrry for cover when you turn over the rock or log. Kind of reminds you of this: Four fund providers suspend withdrawals as redemptions soar

AUSTRALIA'S mortgage fund industry has dramatically succumbed to a flight of money to government-guaranteed bank deposits, with four of the biggest five fund providers suspending withdrawals.

** snip

The Government last night appeared unable to resolve the cascading problem, with Treasurer Wayne Swan advising those affected to contact CentreLink to see if they were eligible for temporary support.

"These are not deposits in a bank, we are dealing with market-linked investments," Mr Swan said. "The Government is not in a position, and never can be in a position, to provide the same guarantee to market-linked investments as apply to the banking system."


"Taiwan Dumps Fannie, Freddie.
And Uncle Sam?"

"Washington might well worry about who lost Taiwan as a major investor in U.S. agency securities as the Republic of China has openly questioned their credit quality -- even after the federal government has committed hundreds of billions of dollars to bail out mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

"The Taiwanese action is a blow to the reeling U.S. mortgage market, which has been supported by the Republic of China's purchases of agency securities. According to U.S. Treasury data, Taiwan owned a very substantial $55 billion of U.S. agencies along with $43 billion of Treasuries as of June 30, 2007, the most recent date for which these data are available."




Panama is a nice place - low taxes, privacy in banking and investments, relatively low rent and lower home prices. There are lot's of americans, canadians and a number from other "western countries."

I have tried to talk my wife into considering a move to safe haven like Panama, Costa Rico, St. Kit, Jersey Islands or Honduras - but she won't consider leaving our families. It's only a jet flight away but I guess it would feel a lot farther.

Besides, I want to stay to help bring the changes we really need.

Elaine Meinel Supkis

I could tell hair raising stories about people trying to leave Central and South America during economic downturns....very nasty business, that. Not so easy to escape.


DrKrbyLuv, buy an open ended "Last Plane Out" ticket down here to New Zealand.

Tell your wife it is for a 'surprise' vacation.

Make sure passports ready.

We have an extra apartment available. ;-)



The Asian Dollar Crisis '97 could be the model for the collapse of yen carry trade. The yen goes back to Japan and those on the short end - ends up like Indonesia or Iceland within weeks. That is what happened in Indonesia but the currency then was the USD. G7 will be toast if they can't stop the Yen from strengthening. It'll be every nation for itself now. IMF can't stop this scale of disaster from unfolding globally within such a short space of time.


Congrats on your hubby's B-day. It takes two.


Was this you, Elaine?

Gobbled up by the derivatives monster
By The Mogambo Guru


"long as we have weapons, technology, land and useful assets to sell them, but the time will soon come when they will be peddling them to us. In the meantime, how big is the derivatives monster that is going to destroy the world's economic system?

Well, the estimate from (as I recall) the International Monetary Fund is that the global total of derivative contracts outstanding is $1.125 quadrillion, whereas global gross domestic product is about $50 trillion, although both numbers are so big that I couldn't make any sense of them even if I was sober, and being sloshed, I revert to more primitive responses, like screaming in fear and holing up behind the massive blast-proof door of the Mogambo Bunker Of Raging Panic (MBORP).

Only here, safe amongst gold, silver, guns, frozen pizzas and stacks of adult literature of the "Hot, Nasty Ladies" variety can I finally relax enough to calculate that to make this $1.125 quadrillion yield even a lowly 1%, it would take $11.25 trillion just to pay the interest! Hahaha! We're freaking doomed! A quarter of global GDP is needed just to pay a 1% yield!

I am laughing hard at this one example of the stupidity of the American school system that anybody in this country could possibly believe such a thing could work! In fact, I was going to use the line "It Ain't Gonna Work", but I see that that title had just been used by Tim Wood at FinancialSense.com, who uses it to say "manipulation will ultimately not work" and that it will "make matters worse in the end. Yet the Fed, the Treasury and the politicians continue to think that they can 'fix' the problem by throwing more money at it. They do not understand that they can't 'fix' this economic crisis. They also do not understand that it is their trying to 'fix' things in the past that has created the current situation."

He says that Nikolai D Kondratieff, the tragic Russian economist of the early 20th century, has foreseen all of this before, and thus, "What we are dealing with is the wrath of Kondratieff Winter, which is about the purging of excess credit. Along with that comes deflation, and along with that global stock markets enter into extended declines. Real estate declines, economic growth slows, commodities decline, bankruptcies accelerate as the excess credit is purged from the system, the banking system is shaken, the free market is blamed and we move toward national fascist political tendencies."

Ominously, he sums up with "We are now seeing each and every one of these symptoms of K-wave winter."

One of the symptoms he did not mention was the intellectual corruption that spews from the Fed, such as the recent decision of the Fed to pay banks interest on their deposits at the Fed! Hahaha! And where in the hell will the Fed get the money to pay all of this interest money? They will create it, too! There is more money everywhere! Hahaha!


Congratulations on the birthday of your husband
To the other poster:
I am not so sure about staying at New Zealand
heck not sure about Australia either. It is all linked together
What is happening to the bond and commodity markets? We are in for tough times no matter where in the world we are

michael g

I've been reading your site for many years, and you deserve a Gold Medal in Economics. What surprises me is how surprised most Americans are to all of this, this is simply history repeating itself. All empires who wage wars and have criminals in charge all end the same way, the only reason we have not so far suffered any of this in Quebec and Canada where I live, is that we have a minority government in both Provincial and Federal levels right now. So the current criminals in power are paralysed to do anything, that is what the U.S. needs a third party. I think you would make a good party president.



some places are already pretty crazy


By the way, I don't like crickets that much. I feed them to the chickens and the duckies. Who love to eat them.
If crickets make too much nonsense noise, we will eat them too. Hahahaha........


Excellent article by Fekete



Dragon, sounds like the crickets are about to be served up for dinner:

[The People's Daily is the official newspaper of China's ruling Communist Party... "The grim reality has led people, amidst the panic, to realize that the United States has used the U.S. dollar's hegemony to plunder the world's wealth," said the commentator, Shi Jianxun, a professor at Shanghai's Tongji University.

"The U.S. dollar is losing people's confidence. The world, acting democratically and lawfully through a global financial organization, urgently needs to change the international monetary system based on U.S. global economic leadership and U.S. dollar dominance," he wrote.

Shi suggested that all trade between Europe and Asia should be settled in euros, pounds, yen and yuan, though he did not explain how the Chinese currency could play such a role since it is not convertible on the capital account...]

At the end of the day all everyone has to do is sing the same song, and tell the goon squad that we do not want to play with you anymore. You had your chance and you went and screwed everyone, including and most specially your own. You want to play, our rules.

Btw, off topic and going back to a thread a few posts back, was a question on "how to boycott the elite". Found another link that might be of interest to those of the same persuasion. They are pretty well organized and just need to reach critical mass. I am starting with my Citibank credit cards. Check out: http://www.karmabanque.com/


Another excellent article!

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