Financial Apocalypse by Bert Dohmen Dohmen Capital

Financial Crisis–Phase II

By Bert Dohmen
Saturday, July 23rd, 2011

(published on Forbes.com)

Jul. 19 2011 – 4:54 pm | 969 views | 1 recommendation | 1 comment

Posted by Bert Dohmen

In late 2007, I wrote the book Prelude To Meltdown, predicting the global crisis that occurred the following year.  I now see a similar confluence of events that warns of  phase II of the global crisis.

Once again I see all the “canaries in the mine,” which warned of the 2008 crisis. My  just released book, Financial Apocalypse , provides the clues and the road map, with charts, of how my  indicators successfully predicted the meltdown that occurred in the fall of 2008. This book is a guide for detecting the next crisis whenever it occurs.  History repeats, or at minimum, it rhymes.

My work shows that “the new recession has started.” The May 9 issue of the Wellington Letter was headlined:  “Return of the Double-Dip.”  At the time, economists were looking for a great economy in the second half. Now they talk about a “soft patch.”  Over the past 33 years, we have called the start of every recession, often on the exact month, or within one month, of the official start as determined one year later by the official arbiter of recession, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER).

How can we be in recession now when the GDP still shows growth? Because of improper inflation adjustments. “Real” GDP growth, the headline number, is nominal growth minus the rate of inflation. However, inflation is far understated for political reasons.

Currently, the GDP deflator is 1.8%, which hardly reflects the true rise in prices. Therefore, what is counted as “growth,” is actually price increases. Actual inflation, according to free market economists who calculate inflation as it was done in 1980 before the politician re-engineered it, is now more than 11%. Using that to adjust GDP for inflation, would show that the economy is now in a very sharp contraction.

When the current euphoric earnings forecasts of Wall Street finally reflect that via significant “earnings downgrades,” the stock market will see a serious “adjustment” as well.

On July 18, Goldman Sachs (GS) substantially lowered its economic growth forecast. Marketwatch.com had this headline:  Goldman Sachs slashes Economic Forecasts. The next step will be for them to substantially reduce earnings forecasts for the S&P 500.

Will the phase II be as bad as the 2008 crisis? The last crisis was confined to the private sector, i.e. financial institutions. The next one will be involve the threatened default of entire countries. The last time, the central banks bailed out the financial firms and even Warren Buffett bailed out several firms. Who is big enough to bail out entire countries? Or will the term of “too big to fail” turn to “too big to bail?”

Bert Dohmen is editor of the Wellington Letter and author of Financial Apocalypse.

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