Sunday, March 05, 2006

Gently down the stream

A number of related tasty items touch the nerve- "Can we keep this boat afloat?" The first from Dan Gillmor talks of and provides a link to Warren Buffett's yearly letter to shareholders. (pdf) Definitely not sanguine.
The second is from Brad Setser, a compatriot of Nouriel Roubini. He starts out referring to today's NYT magazine article about the 17th century house in Amsterdam as it relates to today's market.
Even assuming that the house would sell at the low end, and accounting for inflation, this means that after taking three and a half centuries to double its real value, the house has tripled in value in the last 22 years.
He then seques into a short discussion on the relationship of our real estate economy (which lulls everyone into thinking they are better off) in re China and finally links to Steven Roach of Morgan Stanley who sums up his piece with
The steady drumbeat of protectionism is a very worrisome manifestation of that lesson. To the extent the risks of protectionist actions come into play, the US dollar and real interest rates would probably bear the brunt of the financial market response.
However, the most interesting bit of Roach's essay is his discussion of income inequality which is, after all, what it's all about.


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