Friday, March 04, 2005

Grant's Pork Belly Observer.

Jim Grant of Grant's Interest Rate Observer on CNBC the other day with a couple of good quotes:

"Interest rates are the traffic signals of a market economy, they tell us when to stop, when to proceed cautiously, and when to go. Greenspan, in effect, has turned all these traffic signals green, so naturally there is congestion, there have been pile-ups, and I'm afraid there will be many more pile-ups when credit is repriced properly. The salient feature of our capital markets is the pricing out of risk. Credit spreads are tight as never before both in this country and also in Europe, and people have got it into their heads that as long as Allen is on the job, everything will be fine, and they'll know when to get out, and I'm guessing that they won't know, and that things won't be so fine. Certainly a much cleverer man than I, said recently that government securities at these levels are 'return free risk'. And that is the characteristic of this market, and markets worldwide in credit."

In response to a question about whether the rise in the commodities market is for real and how long the cycle might last, Grant responded:

"I do, it's supported both by the decay of our monetary institutions, but also, and perhaps more fundamentally by the rising prosperity and the good things that are happening in the so called developed world. I think it's a long cycle."


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