Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.UK General Election BBC Exit Polls Forecast Accuracy - Nadeem_Walayat
2.UK General Election 2017 Seats Final Forecast, Labour, Conservative Lib-Dem, SNP - Nadeem_Walayat
3.UK General Election 2017 Forecast: Conservative 358, Labour 212 Seats - Nadeem_Walayat
4.Theresa May to Resign, Fatal Error Was to Believe Worthless Opinion Polls! - Nadeem_Walayat
5.UK House Prices Forecast General Election 2017 Conservative Seats Result - Nadeem_Walayat
6.The Stock Market Crash of 2017 That Never Was But Could it Still Come to Pass? - Sol_Palha
7.[TRADE ALERT] Write This Gold Stock Ticker Down Now - WallStreetNation
8.UK General Election Results Map 2017 vs 2015 vs Opinion Polls - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Orphaned Poisoned Waters,Severe Chronic Water Shortage Imminent - Richard_Mills
10.How The Smart Money Is Playing The Lithium Boom - OilPrice_Com
Last 7 days
Gold Summer Doldrums - 23rd Jun 17
Hedgers Net Short the Euro, US Market Rotates; 2 Horsemen Set to Ride? - 23rd Jun 17
Nether Edge By Election Result: Labour Win Sheffield City Council Seat by 132 Votes - 23rd Jun 17
Grenfell Fire: 600 of 4000 Tower Blocks Ticking Time Bomb Death Traps! - 22nd Jun 17
Car Sales About To Go Over The Cliff - 22nd Jun 17
LOG 0.786 support in CRUDE OIL and COCOA - 22nd Jun 17
More Stock Market Fluctuations Along New Record Highs - 22nd Jun 17
Understanding true money, Pound Sterling must make another historic low, Euro and Gold outlook! - 22nd Jun 17
Green Party Could Control Sheffield City Council Balance of Power Local Election 2018 - 22nd Jun 17
Ratio Combo Charts : Hidden Clues to the Gold Market Puzzle - 22nd Jun 17
Steem Hard Forks & Now People Are Making Even More Money On Blockchain Steemit - 22nd Jun 17
4 Steps for Comparing Binary Options Providers - 22nd Jun 17
Nether Edge & Sharrow By-Election, Will Labour Lose Safe Council Seat, Sheffield? - 21st Jun 17
Stock Market SPX Making New Lows - 21st Jun 17
Your Future Wealth Depends on what You Decide to Keep and Invest in Now - 21st Jun 17
Either Bitcoin Will Fail OR Bitcoin Is A Government Invention Meant To Enslave... - 21st Jun 17
Strength in Gold and Silver Mining Stocks and Its Implications - 21st Jun 17
Inflation is No Longer in Stealth Mode - 21st Jun 17
CRUDE OIL UPDATE- “0.30 risk is cheap for changing implication!” - 20th Jun 17
Crude Oil Verifies Price Breakdown – Or Is It Something More? - 20th Jun 17
Trump Backs ISIS As He Pushes US Onto Brink of World War III With Russia - 20th Jun 17
Most Popular Auto Trading Tools for trading with Stock Markets - 20th Jun 17
GDXJ Gold Stocks Massacre: The Aftermath - 20th Jun 17
Why Walkers Crisps Pay Packet Promotion is RUBBISH! - 20th Jun 17
7 Signs You Should Add Gold To Your Portfolio Now - 19th Jun 17
US Bonds and Related Market Indicators - 19th Jun 17
Wireless Wars: The Billion Dollar Tech Boom No One Is Talking About - 19th Jun 17
Amey Playing Cat and Mouse Game with Sheffield Residents and Tree Campaigners - 19th Jun 17
Positive Stock Market Expectations, But Will Uptrend Continue? - 19th Jun 17
Gold Proprietary Cycle Indicator Remains Down - 19th Jun 17
Stock Market Higher Highs Still Likely - 18th Jun 17
The US Government Clamps Down on Ability of Americans To Purchase Bitcoin - 18th Jun 17
NDX/NAZ Continue downward pressure on the US Stock Market - 18th Jun 17
Return of the Gold Bear? - 18th Jun 17
Are Sheffield's High Rise Tower Blocks Safe? Grenfell Cladding Fire Disaster! - 18th Jun 17
Globalist Takeover Of The Internet Moves Into Overdrive - 17th Jun 17
Crazy Charging Stocks Bull Market Random Thoughts - 17th Jun 17
Reflation, Deflation and Gold - 17th Jun 17
Here’s The Case For An Upside Risk In The Global Economy - 17th Jun 17
Gold Bullish on Fed Interest Rate Hike - 16th Jun 17
Drones Upending Business Models and Reshaping Industry Landscapes - 16th Jun 17
Grenfell Tower Cladding Fire Disaster, 4,000 Ticking Time Bombs, Sheffield Council Flats Panic! - 16th Jun 17
Heating Oil Bottom Is In.(probably) - 16th Jun 17
Here’s the Investing Reason Active Funds Can’t Beat Passive Funds—and It Worries Me a Lot - 16th Jun 17
Is There Gold “Hype” and is Gold an Emotional Trade? - 16th Jun 17

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

The MRI 3D Report

Why We Need a Recession

Economics / Recession 2016 Jan 21, 2016 - 12:02 PM GMT

By: MISES

Economics

Ronald-Peter Stöferle writes: According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), a recession is defined as a “significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months.” Often, this is understood as two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth as measured by a country’s GDP.


Public opinion is generally quite simple in regard to recession: upswings are generally welcomed, recessions are to be avoided. The “Austrians” are however at odds with this general consensus — we regard recessions as healthy and necessary. Economic downturns only correct the aberrations and excesses of a boom. The benefits of recessions include:

  • Sclerotic structures in the labor market are broken up and labor costs decline.
  • Productivity and competitiveness increase.
  • Misallocations are corrected and unprofitable investments abandoned, written off, or liquidated.
  • Government mismanagement of the economy is exposed.
  • Investors and entrepreneurs who were taking too great risks suffer losses and prices adjust to reflect consumer preferences.
  • Recessions also allow a restructuring of production processes.

At the end of the corrective process, the foundation for a renewed upswing is more stable and healthy. We thus see deflationary corrections as a precondition for growth in prosperity that is sustainable in the long term. Ludwig von Mises understood this when he observed:

The return to monetary stability does not generate a crisis. It only brings to light the malinvestments and other mistakes that were made under the hallucination of the illusory prosperity created by the easy money.

Can the Government Save Face?

However, in addition to leading to true temporary hardship for the malinvestment-affected areas of the economy, an economic recession in the near future would represent a harsh loss of face for central bankers. Their controversial monetary policy measures were justified as an appropriate means to nurse the economy back to health. That is, their efforts to end or avoid helpful recessions were claimed to contribute to the eagerly awaited self-sustaining recovery.

But the attempt to combat a crisis that was triggered by too loose monetary policy by the very same means will not lead to sustainable prosperity. It will only delay the crucial adjustment processes of a deflationary phase. The longer they are delayed and the more the central bankers and politicians attempt to keep them at bay, the more uncomfortable this adjustment will become.

Politics Trumps Economics

In general, there is the tendency in every democratic system to prevent too-painful adjustment processes as its nature of short-term bitterness and long-term benefits conflicts with the result scheme politicians are reelected for. No democratic government that is presented with the bill for the obvious successes and failures of its administration at the next election, will voluntarily allow a deep recession to occur — even if it were to agree that the adjustment was necessary.

Hence, inflationary policy is always a welcome method of impoverishing the population by decree and thereby pushing through a real adjustment of prices by force. The debasement of money as a rule always hits a society’s most underprivileged the hardest, as rich people can more easily avoid a devaluation of their wealth.

Concern from Outside the Austrian Camp

Nonetheless, representatives of the Austrian school are no longer alone in warning about the fatal long-term consequences of the zero interest rate policy. Even the Bank for International Settlements, often referred to as the “central bank of central banks,” understands that endless attempts at avoiding recessions can have truly negative effects.

The BIS’s 2014 report warns of overly euphoric financial markets which, according to The Financial Times are “out of step with reality.”

The BIS explains:

Particularly for countries in the late stages of financial booms, the trade-off is now between the risk of bringing forward the downward leg of the cycle and that of suffering a bigger bust later on.

New debt serves primarily to keep the fragile edifice of debt from collapsing; it doesn’t lead to new investment activity. In this respect, the BIS sees parallels between Western industrialized nations today and Japan in the 1990s. These policies, the BIS contends “destabilises the banking sector directly but also acts as a drag on the supply of credit and leads to its misallocation.”

This year, the ECB, which as the successor of the German Bundesbank has long kept the flag of inflation reservation flying, finally capitulated and began betting on increased monetary stimulus — in keeping with the motto: “It isn’t working, so let’s do more of it!”

Nevertheless, according to F.A. Hayek, these united global crisis defense mechanisms only postpone the crisis which will take place at any rate, only later and much more severely:

To combat a depression by a forced credit expansion, is akin to the attempt to fight an evil by its own causes; because we suffer from a misdirection of production, we want even more misdirection — an approach that necessarily leads to an even more serious crisis once the credit expansion comes to an end.

By Ronald-Peter Stöferle

Ronald-Peter Stoeferle is a Chartered Market Technician (CMT) and a Certified Financial Technician (CFTe). During his studies in business administration and finance at the Vienna University of Economics and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, he worked for Raiffeisen Zentralbank (RZB) in the field of Fixed Income/Credit Investments. In 2006 he began writing reports on gold. His six benchmark reports called "In GOLD we TRUST" drew international coverage on CNBC, Bloomberg, the Wall Street Journal, The Economist and the Financial Times. He was awarded "2nd most accurate gold analyst" by Bloomberg in 2011.

http://mises.org

© 2016 Copyright Ronald-Peter Stöferle - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2017 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - 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

Catching a Falling Financial Knife