The Hunt for Chaos ~ The Risk Averse Alert

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Hunt for Chaos

Let's be clear. Team Fraud is in the hunt for chaos. A tax on savings accounts in Cyprus to bail out another Indian casino (of course this being fit for cultured Europeans)? Seriously? This had a snowball's chance in hell, it did. As intended. Someone [bankrupt] wants to light a fire in Europe.

And this is right on the heals of last week's feeding frenzy circling J.P. Morgan Chase. J.P. Morgan Chase! This ain't Fred's Bank. Got $1500? I'll put it right here, in the white suit, top right pocket. (That's an old Steve Martin bit, back in the 70s.)

An insane proposal to tax savings accounts coming right on the heals of JPM's skewering, indeed, vividly exposes this firm's woes for what they are: no different than Bear Stearns or Lehman Brothers. Everyone's bankrupt. Everyone's a target. That's how it was in 2008. That's how it still is now.

Yet JPM is a special breed. The attack on it suggests a decisive, U.S. split from London might be in the making.

So, let's see talk of breaking up big bank holding companies become a brisk walk, then. Otherwise, Congress too could play into the hunt for chaos, particularly if legislative movement invariably toward Glass-Steagall proceeds at a crawl.

Reviewing recent history, chaos is preferred because that's how ill-advised, hasty submission to cures worse than the disease are swindled. Has this framework not more or less characterized those most notable crises of the 21st century thus far?

And maybe that's the gist of the JPM feeding frenzy and increasing talk of breaking up big banks. Congress is signaling its sense that, willfully contrived crises are not going to be tolerated. Yet truth is someone likely will have to be punished for this kind of institutional directive to have even negligible impact. Negligible because only hastened is motivation precipitating panic and nothing but a mess will come of it.

Well, big picture, this is scenery decorating 2013 in a manner putting a challenge of March '09 lows in the crosshairs—or at least something of a scare along these lines, anyway. Oddly enough, it seems more are asleep to any negative possibility now than was the case in 2008. They may not ring a bell when it's time to sell, but sowing seeds of panic certainly is becoming fashionable these days...

Word on the Street
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