Author Archives: Notable Quotable

Notable Quotable

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“[T]he time had come, as in all periods of speculation, when men sought not to be persuaded by the reality of things but to find excuses for escaping into the new world of fantasy.”

John Kenneth Galbraith
The Great Crash of 1929

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Notable Quotable

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“For it is, so to speak, a game of Snap, of Old Maid, of Musical Chairs — a pastime in which he is victor who says Snap neither too soon nor too late, who passed the Old Maid to his neighbour before the game is over, who secures a chair for himself when the music stops. These games can be played with zest and enjoyment, though all the players know that it is the Old Maid which is circulating, or that when the music stops some of the players will find themselves unseated.”

John Maynard Keynes

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Notable Quotable

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“The question is whether there’s enough gold to back the currency reserves. The answer is for the price of gold to go higher, perhaps much higher.… Just wait until they’re forced to loosen into an inflationary spike to support the Treasury. At that point, it’s best to have some gold. That’s what grandpa Ben taught me.” – David Einhorn, Greenlight Capital (US News report)

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Notable Quotable

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“Inflation oscillates: it’s an idea when it’s not about, and a defining feature when it is. The only other word which comes to mind with similar status is ‘war’. Irrelevant or inexorable – the human mind finds it hard to make a judgement between the two extremes.… Inflation and deflation are generational in scale. Most commentary centres around what inflation will do in the short term – which gives, at best, uninteresting answers, and, more importantly, irrelevant answers. The thought that central bankers can do much to change the broad sweep of inflation is, in my view, far-fetched.” – Jonathan Ruffer, Ruffer Investment Review

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Notable Quotable

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“We’re in very uncharted waters. Nobody has gotten by with the kind of money printing now for a very extended period without some kind of trouble. We’re very near the edge of playing with fire.”

Charlie Munger
Berkshire Hathaway

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Notable Quotable

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“Finally, the U.S. got very rich by doing QE. But the license for QE came from the ‘lowflation’ regime enabled by cheap exports coming from Russia and China. Naturally, the top of the global economic food chain – the U.S. – doesn’t want the lowflation regime to end, but if Chimerica and Eurussia are over as unions, the lowflation regime will have to end, period. As we noted in our prior dispatch, the special relationship between China and Russia (‘Chussia’) is a powerful one: a marriage of commodities and industry, uniting the largest commodity producer (Russia) and the factory of the world (China), potentially in control of Eurasia.” – Zoltan Pozsar, Credit Suisse

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Notable Quotable

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“If you want to protect your savings, gold, and silver are important assets to own, especially the physical asset, not just financial instruments. Equities only help while monetary policy continues to create asset inflation, but that can stop abruptly when money supply growth coincides with nominal GDP growth, as the multiple expansion effect dies. Sovereign bonds are not a solution as both the price and the yield make them the most expensive asset.”

Daniel Lacalle, PhD, economist

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Notable Quotable

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“We live in a technological golden age but in a monetary and fiscal dark age. While physicists discover the so-called God particle, governments print and borrow by the trillions. Science and technology may hurtle forward, but money and banking race backward.”

James Grant
Grant’s Interest Rate Observer

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Notable Quotable

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“There is nothing we can take for granted in this inflationary crazy economic environment, no rules of thumb that can really guide us. My father was a thrifty man, a truly great man, but also a believer in long-term value and truth. Yes, he loved gold and silver coins too, and very much so. He accumulated them throughout his life. As I look at that today, it is extremely obvious that this was one of his best financial decisions. He was never a day trader or a rah-rah techno champion. He clung to that which he could really trust, really own, really control. That seems like a good way to think even now.” – Jeffrey Tucker, Daily Reckoning

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Notable Quotable

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“I find myself more and more relying for a solution of our problems on the invisible hand which I tried to eject from economic thinking twenty years ago.”

John Maynard Keynes
1946

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Notable Quotable

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“A post-dollar world is coming.”
Ruchir Sharma, Rockfeller International
(Financial Times editorial)

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Notable Quotable

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“George Bernard Shaw famously observed that he knew three types of economists. Those who were brilliantly right. Those who were brilliantly wrong. And those who taught. Judging by her tenure at the Federal Reserve’s helm and her advocacy now as Treasury Secretary of a super-sized budget stimulus package, it would seem that Janet Yellen falls into Mr. Shaw’s brilliantly wrong category. For this, the country is likely to pay dearly.”

Desmond Lachman, economist
1945

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Notable Quotable

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“One of the signs that you have entered into a mania phase is when people have trouble absorbing non-conforming information. ‘Confirmation bias’ is a psychological behavior where individuals disregard any information which conflicts with their current beliefs. While that bias has always been problematic for investors, in recent years, as individuals lock themselves inside their ‘social media echo chambers,’ it has worsened.”

Lance Roberts
Real Investment Advice

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Notable Quotable

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“. . .[I]f you go down the line of currencies around the world, you don’t find many attractive opportunities. And that’s why I say if the world were to give up on dollars and give up on euros, they’d probably go back to the old standby, which is gold. And I don’t mean by gold, government run gold standard, like we had in the late 19th century. That’s politically impossible. Governments will never be willing to subordinate their policies to the constraints of a hard commodity ever again… So how could gold make a revival as a sort of international money? Well, we don’t actually need a government run gold standard anymore…since people have always had confidence in gold as a long-term store of value, there’s no reason why it couldn’t play that role.”

Benn Steil
Director of International Economics
Council on Foreign Relations

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Notable Quotable

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“Perhaps we slow investors should adopt a mascot. I suggest the sloth. Hanging upside-down, moving at a few metres a minute, is much like trading infrequently: it saves the costs of doing things more quickly. Sloths take almost two months fully to digest each meal — which is handy, given that they eat mildly toxic leaves that would poison them if absorbed too quickly. Investors are reminded, all too often, that the financial world is lush with toxic get-rich quick products. A slower approach to finance makes market movements a great deal more digestible.”

Tim Hartford
Financial Times/The Undercover Economist

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Notable Quotable

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“I’m no insect. Gold is a great way to make a lot of money.”

Thomas Kaplan
Electrum Group

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Notable Quotable

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“Ask anyone in Germany what they associate with gold and, more often than not, they will say that it is synonymous with enduring value and economic prosperity. Ask us at the Bundesbank what our gold holdings mean for us and we will tell you that, first and foremost, they make up a very large share of Germany’s reserve assets … [and they] are a major anchor underpinning confidence in the intrinsic value of the Bundesbank’s balance sheet. The Bundesbank produced this publication to give a detailed account, the first of its kind, of how gold has grown in importance over the course of history, first as medium of payment, later as the bedrock of stability for the international monetary system.”

Jens Wiedmann
President, Bundesbank

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Notable Quotable

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“The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists.”

Ernest Hemingway
 Notes on the Next War: A Serious Topical Letter 
Esquire magazine
September 1935

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Notable Quotable

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“Gold has your back when central bankers don’t.

Jay Martin
Cambridge House International

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Notable Quotable

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“If you look at the history of currency, gold has a unique role and I don’t think it’s accidental. Some people say that if gold hadn’t been selected as a currency thousands of years ago, it would not have a role today. I don’t agree. Gold has a lot of useful properties and unique features so I don’t think its status is in any way accidental. It’s a monetary asset and I think if you replayed history another way, you would come out with gold again.”

Ken Rogoff
Harvard University

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