Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.The Trump Reset, US Empire's Coming Economic, Cyber and Military War With China (2/2) - Nadeem_Walayat
2.Now Is the Time to Buy Gold - 5th Jan 17 - John Grandits
3.CIA Planning Rogue President Donald Trump Assassination? Elites "Manchurian Candidate" Plan B - Nadeem_Walayat
4.The Trump Reset - Regime Change, Russia the Over Hyped Fake News SuperPower (Part1) - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Most Popular Financial Markets Analysis of 2016 - Stock Market Crash Postponed Again - Nadeem_Walayat
6.No UK House Prices Brexit Crash 2016 Despite London Weakness, Forecast 2017 - Nadeem_Walayat
7.President Trump Understands the NSA, CIA... LIE, America's Intelligence Agencies Crime Syndicate! -Nadeem_Walayat
8.President Donald Trump's 2017 New Year Message, BBC Fake News, Was 2016 a Dream? - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Major Stocks Bear Market Still Looms - Zeal_LLC
10.Biased 2017 Forecasts - Debt, Housing and Stock Market (1/2) - James_Quinn
Last 7 days
Bonds, Dollar, Stocks, Gold, Silver Major Markets at Turning Points - 19th Jan 17
Populism; the Danger? What About Debt? - 19th Jan 17
Gold Price 50-DMA Breakout - 19th Jan 17
Turkey, 'Axis of Gold' and End of US Dollar Hegemony - 19th Jan 17
The Most Important Market Chart on the Planet - 19th Jan 17
Trump Deficits Will Be Huge - 19th Jan 17
Stock Market Trading Patience Pays Off with CHK Using Momentum Reversals - 19th Jan 17
Gold - How to "Buy Low and Sell High" Like a Pro - 19th Jan 17
State of the Global Stock, Financial and Commodity Markets Report 2017 - 19th Jan 17
The Hunt for Russia's Next Enemy - 18th Jan 17
Returning Gold Bulls - 18th Jan 17
Biotech Breakthrough Could Create A $11.4 Trillion Opportunity - 18th Jan 17
Bitcoin and Gold - Outlook, Volatility and Safe Haven Diversification - 17th Jan 17
Stock Market Uptrend on Borrowed Time - 17th Jan 17
The One Stock to Retire On - 17th Jan 17
Trump anti-Communist Counter Revolution - 17th Jan 17
US Stock Market Update as the Trump Inauguration Approaches - 17th Jan 17
The American Crisis - Common Sense 2017 - 17th Jan 17
Obama Leaves, Hope Arrives, Will Stupid Stay? - 17th Jan 17
Damage Inflicted by Precious Metals Manipulation Is in the “Multi Billions” - Keith Neumeyer - 17th Jan 17
Gold Price Forecast 2017 Update - Video - 17th Jan 17
The Story of the U.S. Regime Change Plan in the Philippines - 16th Jan 17
Gold Price 2017 Trending Towards $1375 as Forecast - 16th Jan 17
'Deep State' CIA Director States We are Not NAZI's, Warns Trump Does Not Understand Russian Threat - 15th Jan 17
UK House Prices Forecast 2017 - Crash or Bull Market? - Video - 15th Jan 17
SPX Stocks Bull Market Update - 14th Jan 17
President Trump vs the Deep State that Hides in Plain Sight - 14th Jan 17
The Impact of Sir Alex Ferguson's Retirement on Man United's Share Price - 14th Jan 17
What Can Stock Market Tell You About Politics? - 13th Jan 17
Big Gold Buying Coming 2017 - 13th Jan 17
A Bullish Case for Gold 2017 - 13th Jan 17
Will Stocks Bull Market Continue to Charge or is it Time to Sell the News - 13th Jan 17
Gold and Silver Off To Shining Start to 2017 - 13th Jan 17
Gold’s Fundamental Outlook for 2017 - 13th Jan 17
Is trading stocks and shares just as luck-based as roulette? - 13th Jan 17
Trump CIA Like Nazi Germany - Fake MI6 Intelligence leaked to Fake News Mainstream Media - 13th Jan 17
USD in Decline. SPX and TNX May Follow - 12th Jan 17
CIA War On Trump - Leaks Fake MI6 Intelligence to Fake News Broadcast Media - 12th Jan 17

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis


Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

State of Global Markets 2017 - Report

Gold, Silver, Zika, ZIRP, and NIRP Viruses

Stock-Markets / Financial Markets 2016 Mar 14, 2016 - 05:28 PM GMT

By: DeviantInvestor

Stock-Markets

The Zika virus is the newest threat to humanity, especially pregnant women, so they say.  Big Pharma is working feverishly to create a vaccine.  Chances are the vaccine will be created, highly profitable, and Big Pharma will be “held harmless” for injuries to those who were vaccinated.

Add GM mosquitos, birth defects, Brazilian Olympics, big profits, and the story becomes a huge distraction.  John Rappoport has suggested there is more to the story.


There is money to be made on vaccines and GM mosquitos, and money to be lost if sales of pesticides and other chemicals are reduced.  It is clear in which direction the politics will lean.

The Zika virus should remind us of other strange activities in the financial world.

——– Speculation and Sarcasm Alert ————-

What if we think of ZIRP (Zero Interest Rate Program) as a financial virus, created and distributed by the central banks, that infects pools of savings?  Symptoms are:

  1. The ZIRP virus weakens and gradually destroys pension funds. Retirees, beware of this virus!
  2. The ZIRP virus destroys income for personal savers. People saved for decades and now their savings yield little or nothing in interest.
  3. The same has occurred with Insurance companies – they earn little on their bonds compared to what they previously earned.
  4. Governments must (in theory) increase their contributions to retirement plans to supplement the decreased earnings due to the deleterious effects of the ZIRP virus. Consequently some governments are closer to insolvency and should curtail expenditures.  Retirees, this is another warning!
  5. The bond market is further levitated in its 35 year bull market. This benefits the political and financial elite  …   until it crashes.

The ZIRP virus is a nasty virus that affects many people, pension plans, insurance companies, and government budgets.  Central banks have concocted this virus and it has infected many pools of savings.

But there are worse viruses than the ZIRP virus!

The ZIRP virus has mutated into a nastier version – the NIRP virus, otherwise known as the Negative Interest Rate Program virus.  Currently over $7 Trillion in sovereign debt has been infected with this virus and the quantity of infected debt increases daily.

From John Rubino:

“Yesterday Japan’s government borrowed money on terms that require the lenders to pay rather than receive interest for ten years.  And not only was that bond issue snapped up, it was vastly oversubscribed.  This raises a lot of questions, the chief being ‘why would anyone voluntarily commit to something that’s guaranteed to lose money for a decade?’

The short, obvious answer is that the world’s central banks are creating so much excess cash that there seems to be nowhere else for it to go.”

The NIRP virus is similar in symptoms and consequences to the ZIRP virus:

  1. Pension funds are destroyed even more rapidly.
  2. Personal savers will, once infected by the NIRP virus, experience the questionable privilege of loaning money to their favorite bank and, if the bank survives, receiving back less than they “deposited.”
  3. Insurance company earnings are hurt by the NIRP virus. Perhaps rates will rise.
  4. Many governments, which are already in financial trouble, will increasingly underfund their pension plans after they have been infected with the NIRP virus.

There are other consequences besides insolvent private pension plans, retirees unable to earn enough from savings, insurance companies earning too little, and government pension plans becoming insolvent quicker.

From Bill Gross (quoted by Rubino):

“Capitalism does not function well, and profit growth is stunted, if short-term and long-term yields near the zero bound are low and the yield curve inappropriately flat.”

From John Rubino:

“They [life insurance companies] price their policies on the assumption of a mid-single digit positive return on their bond portfolios.  Turn that return negative and all of a sudden the world’s life insurers are either unprofitable or insolvent.  And that’s a big industry.

“Pension funds, meanwhile, operate the same way, taking in and investing contributions against future obligations.  Many US pension plans are already borderline broke and in a NIRP environment they’ll suffer a mass extinction.”

Repeat:   regarding the effects of the ZIRP and NIRP viruses:

  1. Capitalism does not function well.
  2. Life insurance companies become unprofitable or insolvent.
  3. Pension funds: expect mass extinction.
  4. Retirees and future retirees: This is your warning!  Read an article from John Mauldin.

However, an even more destructive mutation of the NIRP virus has been sighted and may infect larger pools of capital:

It is possible the NIRP virus will mutate into the NIR-BAM virus.  The Negative Interest Rate with Bank Account Mandatory virus would require that all cash be deposited into bank accounts that are “taxed” each year with negative interest rates.  In other words, you can’t win and you must play the game.  The NIR-BAM virus is spreading in Europe and Japan, and a few early signs have been seen in the U.S.  An outbreak or epidemic is possible.

CONCLUSIONS: 

The ZIRP virus, NIRP virus, and a potential outbreak of the NIR-BAM virus are destructive to savers, pension plans, insurance companies, economies, and governments who fund pension plans.  These viruses have mutated from QE and central bank diseases, and all the consequences of these diseases and viruses have not yet been fully realized.

Going forward we might expect additional QE, continued ZIRP and NIRP, deflation in paper financial markets, weakened economic activities, a banking system crash, and a renaissance in gold and silver markets as people seek protection from the effects of the ZIRP and NIRP viruses.

Economies could deteriorate further as more capital, people and markets are infected by financial viruses.  Fortunately, gold and silver have no counter-party risk and both are likely to prosper as other investments experience the deadly consequences of the ZIRP and NIRP virus.  Also, gold and silver will help protect savers from the NIR-BAM virus if it becomes an epidemic.

Gold and silver might diminish worries and help people sleep, and thereby improve their immune systems, which will also help protect people from the Zika virus.

Gold and Silver will thrive – as paper assets are increasingly infected by financial viruses.

Gary Christenson

GE Christenson aka Deviant Investor If you would like to be updated on new blog posts, please subscribe to my RSS Feed or e-mail. My books on Amazon

© 2016 Copyright Deviant Investor - 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.

Deviant Investor Archive

© 2005-2016 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