Monday, May 30, 2016

Five Ways This Blog Can Be Useful to You

Recently, I made a decision to end daily articles here on this blog. I explained that because I have come to the conclusion that we will not see much major monetary system change happen quickly unless we get another major financial crisis, it does really make sense to write daily articles. This means that the most important function here is to maintain a watch for signs that another crisis might might be headed our way. Meanwhile, I continue to write articles now and then when I see a significant event that truly relates to potential monetary system change (like a major speech or article from an official at IMF or BIS for example).  If I see significant new information from someone like Jim Rickards I might have an article on that as well.

A legitimate question for readers may be:

If you are writing fewer articles and don't expect much to change unless there is another major crisis, how is this blog useful to me? Below I will list five ways I believe this blog can be useful to you and then offer some added comments.


1) This blog will maintain what I am calling a "Crisis Watch" monthly. I gave this a lot of thought and decided this is the best way to deal with this topic. A problem I see with constantly discussing a potential financial crisis is that the timing of any such event is a complete unknown. The conditions exist for one to happen at any time, but it could also be a long time before we see one as well. My solution was to simply provide a "Crisis Watch" that I can update on the first day of each month. It provides a summary of views on when or if we will see another major crisis from a wide variety of sources many people see as credible. This can be helpful to you both in staying updated on what various sources are saying and in comparing sources over time to see who tends to be more accurate. Here is the most recent "Crisis Watch" update to give you a feel for how it works. If something major happens in between updates that indicates a crisis is unfolding I will try to jump in at that time with an article. Otherwise, I think a monthly update works fine to be useful to you. The new update coming 6-1-16 will have some quotes from some of the sources listed. Some other sources reviewed my comments and approved them.

2) This blog has an archive of warnings issued from both the IMF and BIS over the past couple of years related to the stability of the global financial and monetary system. This is a great resource that will stay here archived and will continue to be updated over time. I don't think you will find a list like this all in one place anywhere else that I am aware of. Here is the link to the warnings list here. This list is another way that this blog can be useful to you.

3) This blog has an archive of articles on the potential for the SDR to someday replace the US dollar as global reserve currency. This is a topic that is gaining more and more attention as time goes by. Jim Rickards first pointed me towards this issue as an important one to follow over time. He believes we will see this happen and has written and spoken extensively about it. His views motivated me to try and explore this further on my own to see if I could get some independent research that supports that this is something that could really happen in the future. That led me to Dr. Warren Coats who is one of the leading experts in the world without question on SDRs. Dr. Coats was formerly the head of the SDR Division at the IMF and has decades of experience with both the SDR and monetary systems. I had the good fortune to connect with him by email and he then offered to help my research. He pointed me towards his own proposal to someday have the SDR replace the US dollar as global reserve currency. He also agreed to do a Q&A style interview on his proposal and has been willing to give me direct quotes for use in several articles published here. I believe that these direct comments he gave me to use on the blog adds to the information base on this subject in a meaningful way. It is very hard to get current IMF or BIS officials to discuss this topic and offer direct comments. Dr. Coats willingness to do that is a significant way this blog can be useful to anyone wanting to learn more about this topic. (If it starts to actually happen, I believe this will be a lot of people)

4) This blog attempts to fill what I felt was a void in this space. By this I mean the whole subject of some kind of major event that causes a sea change in the entire global monetary system. This is not a topic that the average person is naturally drawn to. For most people the topic is either too academic to interest them or too extreme for them to take seriously. Having followed this now for many years I see great information available from people like Jim Rickards and Willem Middelkoop. They both are able to relate to the average person very well, but their books and presentations are more geared to people who have some wealth and are investors. At the other end of the spectrum, there are some great alternative media sites that attempt to convince the average person that a big crisis is coming and they need to prepare for it. However, what I see happen on many of these sites is that there are virtually constant daily predictions that a crisis is about to happen any minute. This appeals to those who already believe a big crisis is coming, but not so much to the average person who has not given the concept much thought or would view the whole idea as too extreme. 

If you know people in that category, this blog can be helpful to you by introducing them to these issues by using more mainstream sources that they would view as more credible. This is why I only use IMF and BIS warnings in the systemic risk articles listed here mentioned in point #2 above. It is unreasonable to expect someone new to all these issues to just blindly accept sources they have never heard of or who constantly predict a daily crisis that does not take place. The goal of this blog is to try and offer credible, verifiable information on these topics without any agenda. In this way, the blog can be a good resource base of information for anyone new to these issues that you may know.

5) Some articles on this blog offer information and commentary based on direct input I have gotten from well known experts on monetary systems. In some cases they prefer to remain off the record. In other cases they have given me permission to quote them in articles. But readers can assume that I go to great lengths to get many articles that cite experts mentioned here reviewed before I publish them. This is an effort to improve the accuracy and content quality of the article. Here is an example of a recent article that was reviewed in this way by Dr. Warren Coats and others: Claudio Speech Followup Article

Of course these experts don't necessarily endorse any opinions I offer on my own (which I try to minimize) , but I do have them review some articles before publication to insure accurate quotes and offer any input on overall content they may wish to give me. This review of some articles by experts is another way this blog can be useful to you by insuring that the quality of the information is improved.
My added commentary:

Summary - this blog attempts to provide a free public data base of information on what I believe is an important topic. If we do get another major financial crisis and it leads to major changes in the global monetary system, most people who have not viewed this as an important topic will start looking to learn more about it because it will impact them in their daily lives. If someday we really do see a proposal for the SDR to replace the US dollar for example, people will need good information on this topic and it's actually not easy to find.

The goal here is to provide quality information designed to cater to those who are looking for information for the first time without much background in these issues and to maintain an archive of easy to find articles that will stay available here. The articles are designed to continue to be useful for anyone needing some basic background information.

This blog can help people by providing this information without promoting any kind of agenda. I believe it can fill a void that exists on this topic and can be useful to you in the five ways listed above.

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