While we will have much more to share from the latest weekend letter by One River's Eric Peters shortly, we found the following section on inflation vs asset bubbles - a topic which BofA's Michael Hartnett has been focusing extensively on in the past year and which serves as the basis for the "Icarus Rally" - particularly notable as it explains all of today's comments from Janet Yellen and other central bankers, discussing why it is only a matter of time before inflation returns, as the alternative, as Peters' explains, is a world in which yields simply refuse to go up, leading to a nightmare scenario for the next Fed chair, who will be forced to pop the world's biggest asset bubble.
Excerpted from the latest weekend notes by One River CIO, Eric Peters:
“Why are we not experiencing deflation?” he asked. “How can the top five stocks in the Nasdaq reduce US GDP but we feel better off?” he asked. “Why are Americans buying no more cars today than in 1978 when our population is 100mm higher?” he asked. “Why compare today to a world of combustion engines when we have so many more interesting things to do without moving an inch?” he asked.
“And why do central banks create endless bubbles to restore an inflation rate from that ancient time?” he asked. “Why is that not the right question?”
“Global profits are rising, unemployment is falling, growth is up, wages too,” said the strategist.
“Yet bond yields seem unable to jump.” US 10yr bond yields are 2.27%, Germany 0.40%, Japan 0.05%. “The cyclical surprise is that the Phillips curve finally kicks in, just as everyone gives in.” US unemployment is 4.2%, a 17yr low. Germany 3.6%, a 37yr low. Japan 2.8%, a 23yr low. “And the biggest structural surprise is that technology has rendered wage inflation a phenomenon for the history books.”
“But if we don’t see a sustained cyclical jump in wages, then yields won’t go up. And if yields don’t go up, then the asset price ascent will accelerate,” continued the strategist. “Which will lead us into a 2018 that looks like what we had expected out of 2017; a war against inequality, a battle for Main Street at the expense of Wall Street, an Occupy Silicon Valley movement.”
He paused, flipping through his calendar. "Then you’ll have this nightmare for the next Federal Reserve chief, because they’ll have to pop a bubble.”