The VP Blog

A blog about financial markets and the VP investing framework

Jobless Expansion Trend in the US Hits New Lows

So far the recovery in output, income and employment following the 2008/09 recession has been the weakest on record with only industrial activity appearing to buck the trend. Most remarkably, however, is the steady decline in post-recession expansions of employment and personal income growth. In the US, these have fallen since 1982, but have currently hit a new low point.

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Hungary could face collateral damage from an unwind of the CHF peg

One country very sensitive to economic events in Switzerland, specifically the strength of the CHF, is Hungary. Hungary has a high ratio of loans denominated in a foreign currency – over 60% of GDP – most of which is in Swiss francs. As the HUF weakens, especially if against the CHF, Hungary’s external debt position rapidly worsens. Indeed, the correlation between Hungarian CDS and CHFHUF is as high as it’s been in 2 years.

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CNBC Interview

Variant Perception had one guest host appearance on the CNBC today. Head of Research Claus Vistesen talked about the ECB's rate decision and what it is likely to do in the face of a weakening global economy. We should of course point out that although the Riksbank in...

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Austerity in the Developed World is not working, but it is necessary

Fiscal austerity in the developed world represents a paradox. On one hand, it is necessary as governments had already borrowed too much going into the crisis and can thus no longer continue to lever up to compensate for private deleveraging. On the other hand, the objective of fiscal austerity is to stabilise exploding government debt to GDP ratios, but this is proving difficult as depressing government spending leads to a higher decline in GDP relative to the reduction in the gross debt level.

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