They didn't even have martial law when the great depression was occuring.
Originally posted by grimreaper797
reply to post by Relentless
I think you are exaggerating this incredibly. Anyone who lived through 1973-1974 would tell you the same. They lost 45% of the stock value. This bear market is "worse" than the bear market of 1987 and after because its more drawn out of a beating.
In fact, the current economic woes look a lot like what my 96-year-old grandmother still calls "the real Great Depression." She pinched pennies in the 1930s, but she says that times were not nearly so bad as the depression her grandparents went through. That crash came in 1873 and lasted more than four years. It looks much more like our current crisis.
In the end, the Panic of 1873 demonstrated that the center of gravity for the world's credit had shifted west — from Central Europe toward the United States. The current panic suggests a further shift — from the United States to China and India. Beyond that I would not hazard a guess. I still have microfilm to read.
Scott Reynolds Nelson is a professor of history at the College of William and Mary. Among his books is Steel Drivin' Man: John Henry, the Untold Story of an American legend (Oxford University Press, 2006).
Originally posted by The_Modulus
I find the alarmist tone of this thread rather alarming!
Relentless, I think you have been extremely irresponsible in encouraging this fervor. As has been stated numerous times throughout this thread, and is commonly known, the absolute worst thing you can do under these circumstances is cause a panic.
Originally posted by netwarrior
Karl Denninger has been supernaturally accurate over the past year or more. If he says it, I listen. He's a voice of reason amidst a pandemonium of insanit
I don't think Relentless was out of line at all, even taking Friday into consideration.
Originally posted by CoffinFeeder
I for one think your source, your source's story and this site's kee jerk chicken little outlook on this whole situation... is crap.
Commerce is still moving, and frankly, we're seeing an increase of it at where I work.
Letters of Credit: Going, Going Gone?
Just as the business world is dependent upon commercial paper as its life blood, the world of global trade depends on letters of credit (LOC). Without LOCs, the world of trade quickly freezes up.
If you are a manufacturer of a product and want to sell to someone outside your borders, you typically require a letter of credit from the buyer before you load any cargo at a port. A letter of credit from a prime bank is considered to be proof of your ability to pay. It not only can be a source of ultimate payment, it can be a source of inventory financing while goods are in transit.
And if you are a business which is buying a product, you do not want to release money until you know the product is on the way. There are buyer's and seller's agents who make sure these things happen seamlessly, and world commerce had grown because of it.
Now we are starting to get anecdotal evidence that this extremely vital market is also freezing up. If you think the problems stemming from a meltdown with the commercial paper markets are threatening to the world economy, they are small potatoes when compared to a seizure in the letter of credit markets.
I had been thinking about this for a few weeks. Then an article posted on Naked Capitalist caught my eye. Quoting:
"At the end of the day, if every counterparty is bad then you don't have a market and you don't have an economy. I spoke to another friend of mine this afternoon, whose father has been in the shipping business forever. Pristine credit rating, rock solid balance sheet. He says if he takes his BNP Paribas letter of credit to Citi today for short term funding for his vessels, they won't give it to him. That means he can't ship goods, which means that within the next 2 weeks, physical shortages of commodities begin to show up. THE CENTRAL BANKS CAN'T LET THAT HAPPEN OR WE HAVE NO ECONOMY, LET ALONE A CREDIT SYSTEM."
And they quote the following story from The Financial Post of Canada:
"The credit crisis is spilling over into the grain industry as international buyers find themselves unable to come up with payment, forcing sellers to shoulder often substantial losses.
"Before cargoes can be loaded at port, buyers typically must produce proof they are good for the money. But more deals are falling through as sellers decide they don't trust the financial institution named in the buyer's letter of credit, analysts said.
"'There are all kinds of stuff stacked up on docks right now that can't be shipped because people can't get letters of credit,' said Bill Gary, president of Commodity Information Systems in Oklahoma City. 'The problem is not demand, and it's not supply because we have plenty of supply. It's finding anyone who can come up with the credit to buy.'
"So far the problem is mostly being felt in U.S. and South American ports, but observers say it is only a matter of time before it hits Canada. 'We've got a nightmare in front of us and a lot of people are concerned it's going to get a lot worse,' said Anthony Temple, a grain marketing expert based in Vancouver.
"Access to credit is key to the survival of maritime trade and insiders now say the supply is being severely restricted. More than 90% of the world's trade by volume goes by ship. 'The credit crisis has made banks nervous and the last thing on their minds is making fresh loans,' Omar Nokta, an analyst at investment bank Dahlman Rose, said in an interview with Reuters.
"While shipping has always been a cyclical industry whose fortunes rise and fall with the global economy, analysts said the current crisis over the drying up of credit is something they have never seen before."
If banks are refusing to go into the LIBOR market and lend to each other, then why would they want to take a letter of credit either? At first, it will be a small trickle, which is how the commercial paper meltdown started. Then it will be a flood.
The one good sector in the US is its export sector. Start slowing that down due to a lack of ability to ship or receive payments and see what happens to an already shrinking economy. If anyone wants to see how the credit crisis can affect Main Street, look no further.
It is hard to overstate the problem and the potential for it to create a true economic meltdown. It must be dealt with, and soon.