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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dr. Doom: No depression, but more recession

The guy who called the economic collapse sees the current stock rally as more "dead cat bounce."

Comments (5)

Oregon's May revenue forecast will show a $7 Billion dollar hole in the next budget.
Oregon unemployment will swell past 13% in April and head for 15% by summer's end.
Meanwhile Governor Kulongoski will AWOL.

If Dr. Doom says anything optimistic, then he would no longer be Dr. Doom. Then how would he score with the "cosmopolitan crowd to the frequent parties at his Tribeca loft"

If Dr. Doom says anything optimistic, then he would no longer be Dr. Doom. Then how would he score with the "cosmopolitan crowd to the frequent parties at his Tribeca loft"

Actually, he finishes with some measured words of optimism, noting that the often-criticized actions of the Fed and Treasury spanning two administrations, the Obama stimulus and actions by governments abroad "has reduced the risk of a near depression" that "seemed highly likely six months ago."

Not sure about the dead cat bounce. At least three stocks I bought back in March are up a solid 10% plus. There are a lot of scared investors who missed out on some really low priced solid stocks 6 or 7 weeks ago. Microsoft at 15, United Technology Below 40 and Apple in the 90s to name just a few.

I got right to work, though wondering about, this: Treasury Department Issues Emergency Recall Of All US Dollars, by Theo Nion, April 16, just doing my all-American part.

A sudden confiscation of all U.S. currency by the Federal government for environmental health reasons? ...
Okay, tomorrow all Americans will receive a bag like this in the mail. Just rubber-band the money into neat piles and put it into the sack and then drop the sack into your nearest mailbox. Uh, do not under any circumstances attempt to burn or shred the money yourself. The Federal government, uh, are the only ones who can destroy the money ....

We understand that this recall will be hard on U.S. citizens who will have no more money but we assure you if you work hard, you will be eventually able to earn, uh, earn it back. This is in the best interest of the American people.

[see news video, at link]
But now Ringmaster Rubini(?) puts my panicked mind at parade rest, wrists secured behind my back away from all boxcutters, standing watch at a long circus line of slogan bandwagons coming down Easy Money Main Street. Any of which could work before it is necessary for 'NSF' (National Security Finders-keepers) marking checks door-to-door after confiscated currency.

So many Rubini(?) options, so much Rubini(?) time: "... policy action (massive and unconventional monetary easing, larger fiscal-stimulus packages, bailouts of financial firms, individual mortgage-debt relief, and increased financial support for troubled emerging markets) ...."

Reassuring that it is (commented), "... some measured words of optimism" from Dear Doom. Although 'optimism only, none other' might be well watching what we say, de rigeur post-mortis, in these days of ChainySaw Clearhit Squads, and Rubini(?) had to speak optimistic of speaking again. Too bad his reassurance got publicized too late to buoy the suicidal mind of mess management. Some simply pre-maturely got to the end of their rope ... talk about your dead bounce not letting the cat out of the bag: April 23-24, 2009 -- Freddie Mac CFO hangs himself or so says Fairfax Police

... chief financial officer David B. Kellermann, 41, was found dead at his home in the early morning hours of April 22. Fairfax County Police immediately said there was no sign of foul play in what was termed an "apparent suicide," even before an autopsy was conducted .... There were no police reports about a suicide note being found. ... Mrs. Kellermann phoned the Fairfax County police at 4:48 am. ... Kellermann worked at Freddie Mac's headquarters in nearby McLean, Virginia.

Kellermann worked for Freddie Mac for 16 years, as a vice president and senior controller, accounting officer, and mortgage analyst. He assumed the duties of CFO in September 2008. Kellermann took over the CFO duties from Anthony "Buddy" Piszel who resigned with other Freddie Mac officers after the government assumed direct control of the corporation amid charges that Freddie Mac's mismanagement contributed to the mortgage meltdown.

Freddie Mac's government-appointed CEO, David Moffett, to whom Kellermann reported directly, resigned in March after only six months in the job, ... not known whether Moffett quit or was fired by the federal government overseers. Before taking the CEO job at Freddie Mac, Moffett had been a senior adviser to The Carlyle Group ....

Freddie Mac and its sister organization Fannie Mae once controlled half of America's $12 trillion mortgage industry. In 2008, Freddie Mac lost over $50 billion. Kellermann, as a former controller and auditor would have had intimate knowledge of Freddie Mac's business practices and what happened to not only the $50 billion but also the fate of over $13 billion in federal bailout money received in 2008. Kellermann would have also known all the designated recipients of over $210 million in bonuses being paid this year and in 2010 as incentives to Freddie Mac executives. ... the FBI has been investigating Freddie Mac, the Associated Press reported that Kellermann was not a target. There is a strong possibility that Kellermann was assisting the FBI and federal prosecutors in their investigation of the company ....

Kellermann would have also been aware of the accounting "tricks" that Freddie Mac's board of directors came up with and implemented to make the firm look more profitable than it was in order to increase bonuses for Freddie's top executives. One of those directors was Rahm Emanuel, President Obama's Chief of Staff, who was appointed to Freddie's board in 2000.

Buddy Piszel, the CFO and Kellermann's boss, told the (March 12, 2008) conference: "So, where do we stand on capital? Well, for starters, on January 2, after adopting the fair value option, our capital stood at approximately $39 billion with an estimated surplus over the 30% of $4.5 billion. I might add that this is twice the surplus we had over the 30% starting out in '07 and it is about $12.4 billion over the minimum capital requirement." In fact, Piszel was far off base [and survives]. Freddie Mac lost over $50 billion in 2008.

Patti Cook, Freddie's Chief Business Officer, told the conference, "Freddie Mac's market share in our three business lines has improved and should remain strong for the foreseeable future." Six months later, Freddie Mac would financially collapse.

So, I suppose, Rubini(?) probably rationalizes, "hang the depression, and go with the impressionary recession." How close that is to the reality of dollars and sense, I don't know.

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