Fiat Money Quantity hits new record

Alasdair Macleod – 18 November 2013

Based on the monthly figures to 1st October recently released by the St Louis Fed, FMQ jumped $227bn in September to $12,176bn. This puts it $4,819bn and 65% over the long-term exponential trend established between 1960 and July 2008, the month before the Lehman crisis. The revised chart is shown below.

Fiat money quantity

US Treasury

QE3 is running at $85bn, and directly increases FMQ by double that amount, or $170bn, indicating that other factors contributed $57bn to the FMQ total. This suggests that the current rate of QE was insufficient to provide the liquidity required in money markets consistent with current interest rates, at least for the month of September. However, bond yields are still high, despite the deferral of tapering, as shown in the second chart, which is of the US Treasury 10-year note yield.

Since 30th October the Treasury 10-year note yield has increased from 2.5% to 2.75%. During that time it has been more widely acknowledged that tapering has been deferred for the foreseeable future. This being the case, the rise in yield indicates that underlying tightness in bond markets has returned after a brief pause, despite the Fed’s bond purchases and the liquidity this provides. Therefore, QE3 may need to be supplemented by other measures if interest rates and bond yields are to be maintained at current levels.

Note: the methodology and construction of FMQ was published by GoldMoney, here.

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FinanceAndEconomics

Alasdair started his career as a stockbroker in 1970 on the London Stock Exchange. In those days, trainees learned everything: from making the tea, to corporate finance, to evaluating and dealing in equities and bonds. They learned rapidly through experience about things as diverse as mining shares and general economics. It was excellent training, and within nine years Alasdair had risen to become senior partner of his firm. Subsequently, Alasdair held positions at director level in investment management, and worked as a mutual fund manager. He also worked at a bank in Guernsey as an executive director. For most of his 40 years in the finance industry, Alasdair has been de-mystifying macro-economic events for his investing clients. The accumulation of this experience has convinced him that unsound monetary policies are the most destructive weapon governments use against the common man. Accordingly, his mission is to educate and inform the public in layman’s terms what governments do with money and how to protect themselves from the consequences.

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