Collapse Of An Economic Cycle Or The Entire Financial System?
By Michael Snyder/Economic Collapse BlogMarch 11, 2023
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The mainstream media continues to tell us that the economy is in fine shape, and you can believe that if you want. But evidence continues to mount that indicates that we are headed for very serious trouble.
Inflation is out of control, home sales have fallen for 12 months in a row, large corporations all over America are conducting mass layoffs, and hunger is spreading like wildfire as economic conditions rapidly deteriorate.
If this is "fine", I would hate to see what "bad" would look like. Virtually everything that normally occurs during the early stages of a major economic downturn is happening right now, and that includes an inversion of Treasury yields...
On Tuesday, the difference in the yield on 2-year and 10-year Treasury notes further inverted, with the yield on the 10-year falling 103 basis points, or 1.03 percentage points, below the yield on the 2-year yield. This dynamic has preceded each of the last eight U.S. recessions.
Please read that last sentence again.
This has happened for eight recessions in a row.
Do you think that by some miracle we won't have a recession this time?
At this point, we are actually witnessing the deepest inversion that we have seen "since September 1981"...
The spread between the monetary policy-sensitive two-year U.S. Treasury yield (US2Y) and the 10-year (US10Y) UST yield reached the deepest inversion since September 1981, as bond-market investors priced in higher-for-longer interest rates following Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's Senate testimony earlier in the session.
1981 was more than 40 years ago.
As one analyst told his clients, this is "a big psychological level" that has just been breached...
"We are not sure that -100bps means anything different than -80bps or -90bps did, but it is likely a big psychological level that many will notice," BTIG analyst Jonathan Krinsky wrote in a note to clients.
But don't worry.
CNN says that everything will be just fine.
You believe them, don't you?
Needless to say, a lot of Americans don't believe them.
One of the things that I appreciate about Challenger, Gray & Christmas is that they don't have a political axe to grind. They just report the facts, and their latest report tells us that announced job cuts in the United States are running 427 percent higher than they were at this time in 2022...
So far this year, employers announced plans to cut 180,713 jobs, up 427% from the 34,309 cuts announced in the first two months of 2022. It is the highest January-February total since 2009 when a total of 428,099 job cuts were announced in January and February.
Let those figures sink in for a moment.
When the number of planned layoffs is running 427 percent higher than a year ago, your economy is moving in the wrong direction very rapidly.
And the latest report from Challenger, Gray & Christmas doesn't even include any of the job cut announcements that we have seen so far in March.
For example, it is being reported that General Motors will be offering a "voluntary" exit to the majority "of its 58,000 U.S. white-collar employees"...
General Motors will offer voluntary buyouts to a "majority" of its 58,000 U.S. white-collar employees, as it aims to cut $2 billion in structural costs over the next two years, according to a letter sent to workers Thursday from CEO Mary Barra.
The "Voluntary Separation Program," or VSP, will be offered to all U.S. salaried employees who have spent five or more years at the company as of June 30. Outside of the U.S., the automaker will offer buyouts to executives with at least two years of time at the company.
General Motors is insisting that these are not "layoffs" because employees will get an opportunity to make a choice.
But we are also being told that workers will be "strongly encouraged to consider" the program.
In other words, nobody will be forced out the door, but a significant amount of arm-twisting will be taking place.
Meanwhile, I just learned that Johnson & Johnson has decided to lay off hundreds of workers...
Johnson & Johnson is letting go of nearly 350 employees in the surgical robotics space, according to layoff notices filed in California at the beginning of this month.
The WARN notices list layoffs involving 292 workers at Auris, 47 at Verb Surgical, and four at Ethicon Endo-Surgery. All of the jobs were based in Santa Clara County; the layoffs are effective April 30.
The "tsunami of layoffs" that we have been warned about is here.
It is really happening.
If you lose your job in the months ahead, you can blame the Federal Reserve.
After pushing interest rates all the way to the floor and flooding the system with unprecedented amounts of new money, the Federal Reserve has reversed course.
Now Fed officials are dramatically hiking interest rates and are rapidly reducing the size of their balance sheet.
As a result, money supply growth has actually turned sharply negative...
Money supply growth fell again in January, falling even further into negative territory after turning negative in November 2022 for the first time in twenty-eight years. January's drop continues a steep downward trend from the unprecedented highs experienced during much of the past two years.
Our system is not designed to handle this sort of a rollercoaster ride.
So there will be more layoffs.
And the housing market will continue to crash.
And more major financial institutions will be in peril.
In fact, at this point the amount of confidence that Americans have that their finances will improve in the next year has dropped to a depressingly low level...
Americans' confidence in their finances is at its lowest level in at last 13 years, as inflation and fears of a recession cast a pall of uncertainty over the economy.
In February, just 31% of Americans believed their personal financial situation would improve in the next year, the lowest figure on records dating back to 2010, according to Fannie Mae's monthly survey released on Tuesday.
The bureaucrats in Washington can radically "adjust" the economic numbers that they are giving us in a desperate attempt to make us feel better, but they can't hide the fact that mass layoffs are happening all around us.
For example, a historic paper mill in North Carolina that has been in business for more than a century is now shutting down and laying off all of their employees...
Union representatives with Smokey Mountain Local 507 were reportedly called to a meeting with Pactiv Evergreen officials Monday and told about the plans to close the paper mill.
It employs 1,100 people and is considered a keystone of the local economy.
The words are simply not enough," Canton Mayor Zeb Smathers said, according to local outlet ABC15. "When I was downtown and I saw grown men with tears in their eyes, there are not words, and no one was prepared on this dark Monday to deal with that."
What can you possibly say to those men to convince them that everything is going to be okay?
That town will never be the same again after this.
A massive economic implosion is already happening all around us, but as long as stock prices remain elevated many people will be fooled into thinking that conditions are normal.
But the financial markets are starting to show cracks too.
In fact, one expert just told Fox News that the indicators that he closely watches are pointing to "one of the highest probabilities of a crash in the stock market looking out 60 days"...
After Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell indicated the bank isn't finished raising rates, one market expert has warned a crash could come in a matter of days.
"They're playing catch up, and while they were doing quantitative easing in 2021, inflation started to rage and now they're trying to catch up," The Bear Traps Report founder Larry McDonald said Wednesday on "Mornings with Maria."
"Our 21 Lehman systemic risk indicators that look at equity and credit point to one of the highest probabilities of a crash in the stock market looking out 60 days," McDonald, who is also known for writing a best-selling book on the Lehman Brothers collapse, cautioned.
I really hope that he is wrong.
I really hope that we have more time.
But the reality of what is now taking place should be evident to everyone.
A major economic meltdown has begun, and it will eventually get a whole lot worse.
We aren't just witnessing the end of an economic cycle.
What we are actually witnessing is the end of a deeply corrupt, deeply flawed system.
The greatest debt bubble in the history of the entire planet is starting to burst, and the whole world will soon be experiencing severe pain as a result.