credit crunch

Looking beyond the financial crisis

13 June 2011

The IMF has been busy of late, what with their attempts to stave off European sovereign defaults and shenanigans of its erstwhile managing director, Dominic Strauss-Kahn. I have been busy too (for rather different reasons I hasten to add) and so it has taken me a while to get to looking at the IMF’s most […]

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Junk Charts #3 – US Business Lending

23 February 2010

Clusterstock’s “Chart of the Day” has a chart showing business lending “falling like a knife”. But closer examination of the chart reveals that it is in fact quite misleading.

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Australian Property Prices

30 June 2009

Property prices have always been a popular topic of conversation in Sydney, but the subject has become more contentious since the onslaught of the Global Financial Crisis. Views on prospects for Australian property prices range from the bleakly pessimistic to the wildly optimistic. Iconoclastic economist Dr Steve Keen is one of the more prominent pessimists […]

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Shoots Are Greener in Australia?

7 May 2009

The phrase de jour (or du mois in fact) in financial markets is “green shoots”. Optimists, world equity markets included, are seeing tentative signs of improvement in the world economy. Google trends saw a blip in searches for the phrase green shoots back in January when UK Government minister Baroness Vadera used the phrase and […]

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AIG and DZ Bank: Dumb and Dumber

16 March 2009

To date, in their efforts to make the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) even more disastrous than it already is, the US Government has pumped an extraordinary $170 billion into the American International Group (AIG), the humbled and humiliated insurance giant. AIG’s biggest problems arose from entering into enormous credit default swap (CDS) transactions. The reason […]

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How Big Are Australian Banks?

4 March 2009

There is no doubt that the big four Australian banks have navigated the global financial crisis better than many banks around the world, particularly in the US and UK. However, there seems to be a pervasive tendency in Australia to overstate the success of the Australian banks. A couple of weeks ago, Michael Duffy wrote […]

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The Amazing Shrinking Banks

31 January 2009

Last year, I wrote quite a few posts on the subject of the credit crunch, aka the GFC (“Global Financial Crisis”) or GD2 (“Great Depression 2”). Whatever you want to call it, it has been unfolding for almost two years, and does not show any signs of letting up yet. The hardest hit to date […]

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Australian Prices Heading South

29 January 2009

Yesterday’s quarterly inflation release, which showed prices falling by 0.3% over the December quarter across Australia, cemented expectations of a 1% cut in interest rates in February. How things have changed! My very first Stubborn Mule post back in May 2008 examined the inflationary pressures that had so concerned the Reserve Bank and led them […]

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Volkswagen: The Biggest Company in the World?

11 November 2008

One of the more peculiar stories of late in these times of turbulent financial markets is how, briefly, Volkswagen became the biggest company in the world. In the process, hedge funds around the world suffered losses estimated at over US$35 billion. Over the last few years, Porsche has been building a stake in Volkswagen. By […]

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Australia and the Global Financial Crisis

25 October 2008

Over the last few months I have written a lot about the global financial crisis. My posts have focused on specific events as news has broken, ranging from a programming bug by Moody’s to the enormous US bailout plan and Government guarantees from Ireland to Australia. Here I will instead take a broader perspective and […]

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