Thursday, January 31, 2008

Does noone fear violent revolution anymore?

"The financial industry is bracing for a hurricane" of big write-downs to come in the next few weeks from companies holding complicated credit investments, said David Kelly, chief market strategist at J.P. Morgan Asset Management in New York. "But I think we're just going to get a squall."

Mr. Kelly said anxiety over risky credit instruments is understandable, although he believes a worst-case outcome, including bankruptcies by Wall Street firms, ultimately won't come to pass, in part because government policy makers have been increasingly aggressive about taking steps to avoid a broader recession.

"If it comes right down to it, the (bond insurers) will be bailed out in some way because the financial system needs them to function," said Mr. Kelly. "The amount of money at stake is considerable, of course, but it's nothing in comparison to the resources of the federal government."
The 'resources of the federal government', of course, refers to taxpayer money. So, these people created this system of collateralized debt obligations on real estate asset backed securities which inevitably resulted or will result in mass homelessness and joblessness. And, to acknowledge how flaky the system was, they set up these fake companies which guaranteed a return on these highly correlated investments. If you believed that house prices would increase forever, well, you were a moron, but you wouldn't need insurance. Once you saw the need for insurance, you had to understand that you couldn't get it in any meaningful way.

But. Instead of saying, "Well, we bought insurance from agencies which would clearly fail if they had to pay out at all as part of the grand deceit to pad our bonuses for several years," investment bankers are starting to say 'government policy makers' 'will ... bail... out' 'bond insurers.'

Let's hope they're wrong. I don't think a bloody uprising would be good for my commute.

No comments: