Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.RED ALERT: Paris Terror Attacks - What to Expect Next - STRATFOR
2.Paris Terror Attacks, Death Pangs of a Dying Religion, and Impact on BrExit EU Referendum - Nadeem_Walayat
3.Paris Terror Attacks, Islamic State Attempting to Spark Civil War in France - Nadeem_Walayat
4.Three Shocking Charts That Prove Gold Price Rally Is Coming - Sean Brodrick
5.Stock Market Nifty-Fifty Becomes Fab-Five; Return of the 'Four Horseman' - Mike_Shedlock
6.Africa Population Explosion - Why Europe's Migrant Crisis is Going to Get A Lot Worse - Video - Nadeem_Walayat
7.Gold Mining Stocks May Be The Buy Of The Century - Jeff_Berwick
8.Grandmaster Putin Beats Uncle Sam at His Own Game - Mike_Whitney
9.BRICS? No, CRISIS - Raymond_Matison
10.UK Housing Market Affordability, House Prices Momentum and Trend Forecast - Nadeem_Walayat
Last 5 days
Gold And Silver - No Ending Action, But End May Be Near - 28th Nov 15
Social and Cultural Distress Dividing The Nation - Fourth Turning - 28th Nov 15
Sheffield Houses Prices 2015, Best Estate Agents As Rated by Buyers and Sellers - 28th Nov 15
Stock Market Top Valuations, at a Critical Juncture - 27th Nov 15
The Top Shopping Opportunity on Black Friday - 27th Nov 15
Economics Is About Scarcity, Property, and Relationships - 27th Nov 15
UK Immigration Crisis Hits New Extreme of 336k Net Migration, up 32% on 2014 - 27th Nov 15
Vauxhall Zafira B Fire Danger Recall - What to Do Video - 26th Nov 15
Triggers In US Dollar Collapse - 26th Nov 15
Apple Stock is a 10-Year Short - Bear Market Environment - 26th Nov 15
U.S. Federal Reserve Rate Hike - 26th Nov 15
George Osborne's War on Buy to Let Sector Trending Towards Doomsday - 26th Nov 15
Will Turkey Drag NATO into War With Russia in Syria? - 25th Nov 15
George Osborne’s Autumn Statement and Spending Review Full Text - 25th Nov 15
Will Fresh QE From ECB Boost Gold? - 25th Nov 15
Sheffield, Yorkshire and Humberside House Prices Forecast 2016-2018 - 25th Nov 15
Investors Watch Out For The Auto Industry… - 24th Nov 15
BEA Revises 3rd Quarter 2015 US GDP Economic Growth Upward to 2.07% - 24th Nov 15
Stock Market Supports Are Being Broken - 24th Nov 15
Is Gold Price on the Verge of a Breakout? - 24th Nov 15
Fed’s Tarullo: U.S. Interest Rates Liftoff Should Wait for Signs of Inflation - 24th Nov 15
Silver Price, COT, US Dollar Updates and More - 24th Nov 15
UK Regional House Prices Analysis - Video - 23rd Nov 15
Crude Oil Swinging For The Fences - A 20 to 1 Option Play - 23rd Nov 15
US Dollar, CRB, Oil, Gas, Copper and Gold - The Chartology of Deflation - 23rd Nov 15
UK Regional House Prices, Cheapest and Most Expensive Property Markets - 23rd Nov 15
Stock Market Rally Losing Momentum? - 23rd Nov 15
Will Gold Price Drop Below $1000 Soon? - 23rd Nov 15
Gold and Silver Sector Big Green Light and Low Risk Entry Setup... - 23rd Nov 15
Limits to Economic Growth - Challenge and Choices - 22nd Nov 15
Long Dollar Trade and Current Copper Price Below Cost of Production - 22nd Nov 15
UK Housing Market House Prices Affordability Crisis - Video - 21st Nov 15
The Fed Has Set the Stage for a Stock Market Crash - 21st Nov 15
Stock Market Primary V Wave Continues - 21st Nov 15
Gold And Silver - Value Of Knowing The Trend - 21st Nov 15
UK Footsie Bulls Set To Foot The Bill - 21st Nov 15
UK Housing Market Affordability, House Prices Momentum and Trend Forecast - 21st Nov 15
GDX Gold Miners’ Strong Q3 Results - 20th Nov 15
End of Schengen, Stock Market’s Technical Strength Grows - 20th Nov 15
Justice for All and The Curious Case of Zambia - 20th Nov 15
Paris, Sharm el-Sheikh, and the Resurrection of Old Europe - 20th Nov 15
Silver Prices and The Management of Perception - 20th Nov 15
Stock Market Nifty-Fifty Becomes Fab-Five; Return of the 'Four Horseman' - 20th Nov 15
Waiting for Goldot Again - 20th Nov 15
Michael Curran Goes Down-Market Shopping for Gold Stock Winners - 20th Nov 15
Why Isn’t This Incredibly Bearish Bond Market Development Making the News? - 19th Nov 15
SPX Appears to have Stopped its Rally - 19th Nov 15
The Great Fall Of China Started At Least 4 Years Ago - 19th Nov 15
Using Elliott Waves: As Simple As A-B-C - 19th Nov 15
Has Deflation Been Ddefeated? - 19th Nov 15
Dow Jones Stock Market Index is Not Going to Crash - 19th Nov 15

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Reasons to Get Excited About Japanese Stocks

Why Quantitative Easing Is Similar to Monopoly

Interest-Rates / Quantitative Easing Nov 03, 2010 - 04:44 AM GMT

By: Jared_Levy


Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleThe second iteration of quantitative easing (QE2) is supposed to make "money easier" -- make it flow from the banks to consumers to businesses, etc. The first round of quantitative easing pumped billions of U.S. dollars into the system, but not much of it made it into my hands, and I'm guessing yours either...

If you have ever played Monopoly and have been "the bank," you get to control all the money that is divided out to each player.

Remember that the "extra" money is not part of the money circulating in the game yet.

Did you ever cheat and add a little of that "bank" money to your own reserves? I know some of you may have at least thought about it. I mean, how cool was it to just print or add money as you saw fit, so you could buy more stuff?

That is essentially what the Federal Reserve is doing. The Federal Reserve, which is the central banking system of the U.S., is printing extra U.S. dollars to buy "stuff." That stuff they are buying is not Boardwalk or Park Place on the Monopoly game board but rather government bonds, corporate bonds, mortgage-backed securities, and other securities from banks and other financial institutions around the country.

It's considered a good thing for banks to sell (to the Federal Reserve) the risky and not-so-risky stuff (assets) that is sitting in their inventories. They can exchange that stuff for cash so they can go and lend new cash in the form of loans and such to Americans who are in need of it.

This extra cash is also required by most banks as reserves. Think of reserves as "just in case" money. The Fed has also lowered these reserve requirements to encourage banks to lend and not hoard their cash.

So you'd think with all this Monopoly money flying around and the banks being required to keep less of it to protect their loans, "We the People" should be able to get money just as easy, right? Wrong.

The Real Issues
Without getting overly complex, banks are being stingy with their reserves. Over the past year, yields (interest rates) on corporate bonds have fallen, while rates on smaller commercial and industrial loans have risen. That's not good. That means that big companies can borrow money cheaper, but it's still pretty darn tough for the "little guy" to get a loan or a mortgage in many cases. Banks have more cash on hand now than they have ever had and not by some small amount if you look at the chart below.

Free Money, No Risk
If you could borrow money for 0.75% per year, and lend it to a risk-free buyer at 1%, you would have what is called an arbitrage (aka riskless profit). This was a large part of the "lending" that banks have been doing since the economic crisis began. They could borrow from the Fed and turn around and buy a Treasury note, capturing free interest. The Fed has adjusted its discount rate to discourage that action, but yet banks are still not coughing up the cash to consumers.

But get this: Much of the banks' current cash on hand is NOT even borrowed from the Federal Reserve, meaning they are not paying interest on it, giving them even less of a reason to lend it to us!

(Investing doesn't have to be complicated. Sign up for Smart Investing Daily and let me and my fellow editor Sara Nunnally simplify the market with our easy-to-understand articles.)

Won't It Cause Inflation?
With the billions of U.S. dollars already having being printed and 500 billion to 1 trillion expected in QE2, that puts severe downward pressure on the U.S. dollar. In Monopoly, this can be equated to every player owning property with hotels on it and just going around the board once may end up costing you $5,000 or more. No more $4 rent on Baltic Ave.

In that case (or severe inflation), the dollar bills you have are basically worthless and you MUST have real estate to survive the game. This is the simplest form of inflation; dollars become worth less and less, which equates to everything costing more and your "nest egg" of $100,000 cash may only get you around "life's Monopoly board" for a short time before you're broke from expenses.

Obviously, this is a dramatic scenario and some experts believe that there is a positive to this... I just wish it would trickle down to us. Although I do know how you can profit from it!

What Should You Do?
Making the U.S. dollar less expensive does have its merits (if you're an optimist). A weaker U.S. dollar will continue to drive gold, silver and most U.S. dollar-denominated commodities higher, so make sure you have exposure there.

Real estate and hard assets like land and even numismatics will have a benefit from any inflationary pressures that might come down the pike. Even most of the stock market loves a weak U.S. dollar.

So while Helicopter Ben continues to shower the banks with more money, even though they are not passing it along to us like we would expect, at least you can put what money you have in investments that will be driven by the effects of QE2.

P.S. My colleague and currency expert Michael Sankowski has declared that "World War III" has already begun. The truth is, the currency wars that are igniting around the globe could have a devastating effect on your personal wealth. Mike's done countless hours of research and thinking about this situation. And he has several ways to not only protect yourself from these currency wars... but to profit from them handsomely. Get all the details here...

Don't forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest in financial market news, investment commentary and exclusive special promotions.

Source :

By Jared Levy

Jared Levy is Co-Editor of Smart Investing Daily, a free e-letter dedicated to guiding investors through the world of finance in order to make smart investing decisions. His passion is teaching the public how to successfully trade and invest while keeping risk low.

Jared has spent the past 15 years of his career in the finance and options industry, working as a retail money manager, a floor specialist for Fortune 1000 companies, and most recently a senior derivatives strategist. He was one of the Philadelphia Stock Exchange's youngest-ever members to become a market maker on three major U.S. exchanges.

He has been featured in several industry publications and won an Emmy for his daily video "Trader Cast." Jared serves as a CNBC Fast Money contributor and has appeared on Bloomberg, Fox Business, CNN Radio, Wall Street Journal radio and is regularly quoted by Reuters, The Wall Street Journal and Yahoo! Finance, among other publications.

Copyright © 2010, Taipan Publishing Group

© 2005-2015 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.

Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

Biggest Debt Bomb in History