Busted: Bankers and The Global Economy

October 12, 2008

International Bankers: Time is Short

the IMF in better times

the IMF in better times

The International Monetary Fund, an international organization that oversees the global financial system based on economic policies of its member countries, proclaimed that time is short for consensus on the international financial crisis. The finance members of industrialized nations failed to agree on absolute and unified measures to end the crisis. The IMF expects a systemic meltdown if stability in financial markets is not achieved. While the international body recommends “exceptional vigilance, coordination and readiness to take bold action,” the body is leaving the pressure and responsibility on the collective bodies of national Finance Ministers. All this from an international body that claimed in August that there would be no recession in the Eurozone.

Solvency concerns are cited as the chief concern. The reality is that solvency is determined by a set of regulations that can easy be changed, as has happened in the United States. Therefore, the definition of solvency to a reasonable extent is in the hands of Finance Ministers and national leaders. Where such a change is seen as beneficial, such a move buys time when developing a consensus is especially important.

While consensus has been difficult, developing effective means to counteract the global financial crisis has been no less elusive. Panicked Finance Ministers are looking for support from the IMF or other global authorities in a effort to deal with the crisis. Britain has developed an interbank lending guarantee that has other nations stressing to compete.

In general, G-7 and G-20 ideas are essentially the same and somewhat short on creativity. Whether injecting capital into financial institutions and insurance companies, effectively nationalizing them, or buying up worthless mortgage assets, groups of Finance Ministers are chiefly examining the importance of uniform national guarantees to protect individual economies and to avoid creating a currency run. Encouraging monetary liquidity through central banking auctions has become a mainstay in prime economies.

Most telling perhaps is a statement made by the Brazilian Finance Minister, Guido Mangega, “The problems we are facing today in the global economy must be solved by several countries, they can’t be addressed by only one country or a single continent.” Finance Minsters from the G-20, not wishing to be left out of the loop, want emerging economies to be included within the ranks of G-7 Finance Ministers or by implication, involved as part of a larger authoritarian body.

Even Arab nations, whose prosperity seemed to make them immune from catastrophe are now encountering monetary issues, property value declines and business funding problems that threaten the Arab economic fabric as in much of the world. The Arab nations are largely isolated within the Islamic banking community except from within the burgeoning oil market, which in recent years has fueled inflation rates as high as 25 per cent.

As a result of the growing crisis, the United States is seen on many fronts, notably among Muslim leaders, as having no credibility whatever. Resentment, which is already high in religious circles, is multiplying because of the perception of financial betrayal and lack of wisdom. The push for Islamic banking within Muslim circles will continue despite any devaluation of the dollar experienced.

The issue created by injecting capital into banks dilutes monetary value and ownership of individual banks. While these types of measure can create the appearance of stability, diluting monetary value creates an ongoing increase in national, as well as global inflation. With increases in credit and cash generated for financial rescues, the end result is always inflationary as the devaluation of currency sets in. The only short-term winners are holding the gold and living off the interest for their services: central bankers. Meanwhile, central banking policies are behind the continued growth in inflation because a flawed economic model that mandates liquidity through monetary production. This is currently central banking’s best hope for economic stability. ~ E. Manning

September 2, 2008

Influence: Conventional Banking vs. Islamic

beating factionalized corporate banking

beating factionalized corporate banking

Conventional banking is struggling with its own destructive baggage and increasing loss of jobs while the Islamic banking market has seen expansion of 35% this year with more on the way.

Especially in America and Britain, conventional commercial banking and investment bankers are seeing continued pressures and contraction of demand for services along with a declining market. Islamic sources see nothing but promise for the future in an area that is vastly under-served. Conventional bankers are looking to expand continually into emerging markets in an effort to save themselves and spread the risk. Some are even attempting to break into the Islamic banking market with new thinking based on sharia law.

Commercial conventional bankers in the U.S. and Britain are firmly addicted to the liquidity of auctions from central bankers in those countries. International bankers and bank holding companies are not so fortunate in terms of easy cash. Instead, they are forced to seek investment from global sovereign powers in an effort to save their skin from an untimely demise, as they seek to prop up their failing bonds and investments. The dilemma stems from the excessive use of securitized bonds across the board as a means to boost profits. The cancer of these failing and often outright fraudulent bonds threatens to tumble the global commercial banking economy.

Global central bankers, often referred to on this website as the International Society of Bankers, have taken a step back from investing using the same parameters of the past. Instead they are either holding on to their money or finding new sources of investment like insurance and hedge funds.  Like the precarious global situation, this too will change. Meanwhile, central bankers hold on to the majority of gold and precious metals as they seek more of the same, viewed as the only truly secure means of monetary commerce. As they seek to increase their wealth and hold of power using paper money, most Muslim bankers seek to keep themselves free from the hold of global central bankers.

What the world has in the immediate future is a battle between the two for supremacy: the Middle East and Muslim sovereignty groups and the American, British, Swiss alliance with Roman Banking. The trickery and deceit of global central bankers has recently worked against the immediate power they hold as renegade Middle Eastern nations seek to carve out their own niche of prosperity. The ensuing battle should prove to be of great interest. ~ E. Manning

August 31, 2008

Muslims Prepare for Global Banking Power

Dubai Bank plans to become a major global Islamic lender over the next five years through acquisitions and has set up a $5 billion financing program to assist in the expansion of its authority. This is similar Noor Islamic Bank, which seeks to be the largest Islamic bank within 5 years.

The ruler of Dubai currently holds 40 percent shareholder interest in Dubai Bank. There are negotiations for joint ventures with certain countries targeting the business world to ensure Middle East control of business resources.

Demand for investments and financial services that comply with Islamic law are all the rage among Muslim authorities. Islamic banking includes a ban on the receipt of interest, a concept that is growing among the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims as they seek more ethical ways to invest personal resources.

With the continued influx of global cash, American greenbacks and business savvy, Muslims are prepared to launch a new era of banking and business success with the intent to spread that influence around the globe. The ambitions of family-ruled Dubai have soared during the last few years, benefiting from the profits of oil revenue. Dubai plans to build two of the world’s 10 largest financial institutions by 2015, Dubai official Omar bin Sulaiman told Reuters last year.

The role of central bankers in the scenario, if any, is currently not spelled out in clear writing. Islamic banking could be a rival to central bankers in the near future, since Islamic banking does not agree with the premise of the International Society of Bankers. Any compromises and affiliations could prove to be very interesting as the digital economy of power continues to build. Will the coalition that results clip the wings of liberty as implicated by the image in this article? That reality is likely.~ E. Manning

August 28, 2008

IBM Continues to Escalate Global Tracking

IBM’s strong financial performance lately can be attributed in part to the growth of IBM’s System z10 mainframe. On an increasing basis IBM has been developing global banking and tracking software to serve the needs of multinational corporate clients. In fact, IBM has received a notable patent for tracking which could be used for the creative tracking of not only data and products, but human beings as well.

The IBM mainframe allows for additional protection of sensitive data such as credit card information and client’s personal information from hackers which is a very attractive feature in banking operations. From a computer standpoint, the beauty of the mainframe allows for a policy-based system that distributes, manages and tracks all data in a simplified fashion over older computing. Multinational bankers are investing in the system because of huge expandability promises combined with flexibility in use for multiple types of banking simultaneously: commercial banking, Islamic banking, investment banking and insurance.

If you use your imagination, you can visualize where this advance in computing is taking the global banking system and other multinational corporate capabilities. IBM is almost single-handedly creating the means to elevate a digital revolution in the global economy, quickly becoming a completely digital economy. ~ E. Manning

August 18, 2008

Will Global Confidence Cause a Chain Reaction?

Just a few weeks ago, U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson held that a bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to be highly improbable, if not impossible. Now there is talk that an extraordinary Treasury capital infusion may be needed to restore faltering foreign demand for debt issued by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The mortgage twins are the nation’s two top home funding sources that the government is willing to rescue to save the U.S. housing market.

Foreign central banks have dumped nearly $11 billion from the holdings of the “mortgage twins” in the last four weeks. They don’t plan to reinvest in force until the U.S. government is clear when it will back Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Investors and foreign central banks may be concerned, but the reality of a bailout is academic. The entire fabric of the U.S. housing industry depends on the continued functioning of the mortgage twins. Unless foreign bankers and the Fed expect to pull out on their support of the U.S. economy, such paranoia is largely unwarranted. Obviously, the real concern for central banks is the value of the securities that the foreign bankers hold. Devalued securities diminish their investments; hence, their power. Monetary value has really come to be all about appearance and confidence. Central bankers won’t be caught holding any empty sacks in the name of tacit support. They are part of a chain reaction.

Mortgage bonds are trading poorly while investors wait for good news on Fannie and Freddie capital. Meanwhile, U.S. mortgage rates have climbed to their highest levels in a year in reaction to the contracting housing market. Both are part of a chain reaction.

Investors are momentarily in a mood of increasing nervousness about the global economy, with deteriorating growth in the United States, Europe and Japan now beginning to bite into “emerging markets.” There is a growing belief among investors that the world economy in general is at risk, and with it the emerging markets that have been a powerhouse of growth and investment gain over the past few years. The emerging markets cannot and do not stand on their own. At this stage of development, they are step-children of larger marketplace that isn’t all that sound to begin with. Investors are always ready to be nervous, especially in a time of volatility. They can be and usually are part a wild card in the chain reaction.

Oil commodities, which were up and making the world nervous are now down, making the world nervous. It would seem that the world is simply nervous and using oil as an excuse. Previously, oil was a great profit hedge. When the U.S. started openly discussing releasing a large portion of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve on the open market, investors backed off from the heady world of oil commodities. Naturally, they are taking it slow. Nobody wants to rock the boat too hard. This is part of the chain reaction.

Inflation is up, which has been blamed on Big Oil or at least on commodity futures through investment banks. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? While this topic is open for debate, global inflation is up after inflationary pressures shot up in the U.S. and the Middle East from overheated greenbacks. That doesn’t look to get better anytime soon, especially as long as the U.S. keeps stealing money from the taxpayers vis a vis the Federal Reserve. This is part of the chain reaction.

Global banker’s incessant worrying over their central bank interest rate is nonsense. Rates are so low as to have little effect in the real world. Commercial bankers are profiteering from borrowed central banking money as well as keeping their leaky banks afloat during this rough period. This is part of the chain reaction.

The single bright sector in banking remains in Islamic banking with a very different set of rules that bankers have yet to learn to exploit to full potential. In their worry, investors will look at this new hot market in hopes of developing new means of prosperity, which will likely mean a rise in power in Muslim nations. That is enough to worry many political persuasions worldwide as politics feeds into the monetary system. That is part of the chain reaction.

As economists, politicians, bankers, analysts and writers, we are always looking for an excuse, rationalization or explanation to meet a mindset. While most economists would tell you otherwise, it is not science, but rather a facet of human behavior. As such, economics enjoys the same ups and downs as human life does. That is part of the chain reaction.

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