Monday, January 7, 2013

Ready for the big freeze round two?

Not talking about weather here. We see what's happening to Greece, Spain and Italy with their economic situations. Unable to cover their debts they were able to borrow a good chunk of change just to tread water. Those loans came at a price with strings attached like sucking the life blood out of their citizens with austerity like we've never seen it before.

Who's next on this train wreck of economic activity you may ask? Britain has been in the process of trimming its' budget on the backs of working folks as well. Just yesterday it all but eliminated a program similar to our child care credit. That's were if you have a child living with you you get a tax break if your income is at a certain level. A bit over the poverty line from what I can gather.

We must remember however that literally none of the rules of this casino game have changed since it happened in 2008. They might have come up with the Dodd - Frank bill to change the game but it has yet to be in full force. I guess when you're a bank you can tell the police to wait until your finished cleaning out the vault of all or most of the cash.

What else is happening or has happened in just the past few years to lay yet more burden on the populace? The list is long but gone mostly unnoticed as the frog is slowly boiled. Public transportation has taken a big hit. You will note that fares have doubled in just the last few years. It is now cheaper to drive a car than take a bus here and that's with parking rates that have doubled as well. You see a pattern here? All the while wages have gone down overall as laid off workers who once made a decent living are now forced to get by on half what they once made.

But this is about the pending freeze that's about to hit. From reading the tea leaves it looks like March will be a critical month. While world banks play their smoke and mirrors games the average peon is near a freeze as well. They've been stashing cash and buying gold like never before. Remember those jolly Christmas sales figures? Well they weren't so jolly after all. This is all about leverage and how damaging that can be in the long run. It's simple to understand really. You buy a house and gain some equity. You use that equity to buy an additional house and rent it out and do the same with the rental. All well and good until a tenant trashes the place or skips on the rent. Oh but you say you can sues for damages and get back your losses. Not until you've gone through the maze of the legal system which can take months. In the mean time who pays the mortgage? You get stuck with it and your nice rental empire comes crashing down. Such is the pitfalls of leverage.

So with banks being tight fisted, they want to know the last time you scratched your butt in order to get a mortgage, consumers not spending, and business barely hiring or spending, we have a government who won't spend in areas that might help without draconian cuts to other programs. All of this is happening on a global scale. Taxes may not go up but the fees and cuts to the poor and middle class just keep coming.

The economic turmoil that started in the U.S. in 2008 spread like a wave to the European markets. We as well as the European Central Bank pumped trillions of imaginary money into the system in order to keep the game going. And like the renters in the example we (those at the bottom) have no way to pay it all back or even make payments. The can here has been kicked to March. It's also a time for payments on debts in other countries. So you can see clearly what will happen. The bad paper that was sold before 2008 is still being sold. The hedges against losses are still being bought. And the insurance for those losses is still underfunded. You get the picture now? And a rather chilly one at that.        


BBC said...

You really should get your mind off of it for a while, there's nothing we can do about except deal with the changes the best we can. And keep your powder dry.

BBC said...

If you don't have any guns and ammo and things do go to chaos you soon won't have anything else either.

BBC said...

Oh well, I guess a man with nothing won't need a gun, hehehehe

Tom Harper said...

Gee, thanks for the nice cheerful uplifting post :)

The part about tenants trashing the property and skipping out on the rent reminded me of Pacific Heights. Michael Keaton was the tenant from hell.

Randal Graves said...

Money, it's a gas.

Demeur said...

This is what it is. I don't create em I just report on em.

Randal I see you eyeing my stack.

S.W. Anderson said...

You're right on all counts, Demeur. Look at it this way: at least the Mayans got it wrong, so we're still here to grapple with the mess. Things could always be worse.