Have Central Banks gotten out of the Central banking business into the Central planning business?

Monthly Market Commentary: June 1, 2021

According to former US assistant secretary of education for planning, Williamson M. Evers, "If California education officials have their way, generations of students may not know how to calculate an apartment's square footage or the area of a farm field, but the 'mathematics' of political agitation and organizing will be second nature to them. Encouraging those gifted in math to shine will be a distant memory.”

The San Francisco Chronicle writes that, “17 Walgreens Pharmacy locations have shuttered their doors in San Francisco during the past five years. At least ten of the stores in the city have closed since 2019.

Like many other retailers, Walgreens is blaming Proposition 47, which lowered penalties for thefts under $950 and sparked dramatic increases in shoplifting across the metro area over the last several years. Prop. 47 is supported by criminal justice reformers and the liberal establishment, who have also managed to defund the local police.

Combining the two has allowed professional shoplifters, homeless, and drug addicts to easily work the system and steal items under the monetary threshold from store to store with limited penalties.

Walgreens San Francisco Supervisor Ahsha Safaí told the Chronicle that the situation is 'out of control,' adding: 'People are scared to go into these stores — seniors, people with disabilities, children. It's just happening brazenly.'”

As an aside, the Defund The Police movement has been most successful: Murder Rates in 2021 year-to-date vs 2020: in Minneapolis: up 40%; Chicago: up 22%; Portland: up 800%; Washington DC: up 35%; Philadelphia: up 40%; Los Angeles: up 27%.

In the meantime, we can read that China built the world’s largest arch dam in just four years. According to the Global Times, “The Baihetan Hydropower Station has officially started storing water as the gate of number two diversion bottom hole closed on April 6, meaning the world's largest hydropower project under construction has taken a critical step toward the goal for the first batch of hydropower units to start generating electricity on July 1. With the closing of the gate, the reservoir water level began to rise from 655 meters, according to a statement from Sino-hydro Engineering Bureau, adding that the reservoir water level will be stored to 775 meters in mid-June to meet the conditions for the first batch of hydropower-generating units to start operation. From August to September, the reservoir water will be stored to 800 meters, and then gradually stored to the normal storage level of 825 meters in June 2022.”

Winds of change are set to blow away inflation fears is the title of a report by Albert Edwards, which shows the 12-month change in credit growth in China – known as "credit impulse.”

According to Edwards (and other sources I have seen), credit growth in China is slowing down, which implies a slowdown in the Chinese economy.

Edwards concludes that, "While so many investors are focused on President Biden’s super-loose (some would say crazily loose) fiscal stance in the US, they are missing the deflationary impulse heading down the tracks from China."

As an aside, the late economist Kurt Richebächer repeatedly warned that there was a huge difference between "productive credit", which leads to sustainable economic growth, and "unproductive credit," which eventually would become burdensome. Richebächer: "It is generally not realized that all unproductive debt rapidly compounds. Every new spending requires ever-new credit, and in addition, there runs the soaring bill of compounding interest.

Now compare this with a credit expansion for investment purposes. The debts run up as long as the capital goods are produced. Once these are installed, earned depreciation pays them off. As a rule, though, the depreciation serves, in turn, to finance a virtual endless flow of reinvestments."

Let my readers judge the productiveness of current strong US government debt growth!

Finally, don’t forget Williamson Evers words: “Teach math, not propaganda.”

With kind regards
Yours sincerely
Marc Faber

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