So. We've got about US$1T in the stimulus package, we've got another US$1T or so in TARP II (that's today's newly-announced banking system bailout), we've got a couple of hundred billion from TARP I charged against this new year (which is part of the $500B in "private" equity that's part of TARP II, meaning "not so much with the private equity"), $800B in other-operations deficit (counting the wars, which haven't been being counted) - that's US$3 TRILLION in new treasuries to auction. Or just to print.
The 10-year Treasury poked over 3% yesterday, by the way. The yield is down sharply today as the market slumps substantially this morning - Y HLO THER 7-HNDLE DOWZ - but the trend has been up.
Treasury Secretary Geithner thinks there's scads of money sitting on the sidelines "that wants to come in." I'm not convinced of that at all. There's some, no doubt, but it only wants to come in if it can find a safer place to hide than T-bills and cash - which is what he's trying to set up with TARP II, of course, at your and my expense. Martin Wolf at the Financial Times thinks we're really in trouble because there's still no political willingness to admit that these banks are insolvent, and that the underlying assets are worthless. Brad Setzer at the Council on Foreign Relations, who tends to be more sympathetic than do I, thinks that the government's goals of accountability and refusal to nationalise failed banks is in hopeless opposition, and wishes they'd just nationalise, as does Dr. Roubini at RGE Monitor, who further notes that the Anglo-Saxon regulation model has failed. Mish just calls the whole thing insane, noting indirectly - as does Global Guerrillas in more explicit terms - that we are in a state of regulatory capture, where those supposedly being regulated are in charge of the regulation. This has not changed with the Obama administration.
Meanwhile, Karl thinks Mr. Geithner should resign over the market manipulation that forced the Bear Stearns merger. Yes, he was directly involved.
Mish talks about deflationary pressures on salaries, here, and analyses the stimulus package's spending-over-time here.
Japanese newspapers are reporting that Russia may be about to default on sovereign debt again. That'd be about a US$400B hit. Russia is denying the Nikkei report, however. India saw looting at 600 stores last weekend as Subhiksha Trading Services failed to pay bills to its security services. Former Financial Times and now Minister Ed Balls (there's a name to regret, ne?) reportedly says it's going to be worse than the Depression when he thinks people aren't going to talk to the press. Brad talks about protectionism, and whether talking about protectionism of others is in fact protectionism itself. You may laugh, but of such things, trade wars are made. CATO says "let's not do that, it'd be bad, hmmkay?"
GM's cutting another 10,000 jobs. Wholesaler inventories (as opposed to factory and retail) fell dramatically in December.
Cramer of Mad Money - who is so completely wrong so regularly that he's become a running joke, and yet, still has a show - freaks out about Meredith Whitney and her accurate descriptions of reality, nicknaming her "Jason" and saying she's going to take out all but about two banks with her commentary. Lulz.
BTW, I don't know how reliable this source is, but Stimulus Watch is trying to track funding requests for the stimulus by states, counties, and cities. These are "shovel-ready" requests from governments, not actual fundings.
That's it for now. Good luck, and I hope you had a good weekend and enjoy a good week.