The Zeitgeist – 4.2.2019


Every morning, we run the Narrative Machine on the past 24 hours worth of financial media to find the most on-narrative (i.e. interconnected and central) stories in financial media. It’s not a list of best articles or articles we think are most interesting … often far from it.

But for whatever reason these are articles that are representative of some sort of chord that has been struck in Narrative-world.

Veggie Grill Expanding Despite The Scarcity of People Who Are Vegetarians And Vegans [Forbes]

The snippy tone of this interview is exactly as implied by the article title: what kind of an idiot are you to launch a veggie-only casual dining chain when only x% of people are vegetarian?

The answer, of course, is exactly what the co-founder says here. They’re not selling to vegetarians or vegans, they’re selling to people who want to FEEL like vegetarians or vegans.

Love it.

In the immortal words of Maya Angelou … people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Or in our business, people will never forget what you did for their personal account.

German Factory Slump Leaves Euro Area as Global Economic Laggard [Bloomberg]

And this is why Draghi and the ECB will do MOAR. Gotta get the Euro to USD parity …

We are smack in the middle of the Silver Age of the Central Banker, with Bronze just around the corner.

Larry Kudlow has a point in calling for an immediate Fed rate cut, strategist says [CNBC]

Friends don’t let friends reify the yield curve.

Yeah, it’s a $10 word. It means that the yield curve is not a thing in itself. Seriously, it’s not. Stop treating it like it is. You look like an idiot.

Let’s Not Stress About the Next U.S. Recession [Bloomberg]

It’ll be about this big.

Honest to god, I was sure this was an April Fool’s prank. But no.

Bitcoin Surges as Cryptocurrency Market Suddenly Springs to Life [Bloomberg]

Meanwhile, the idea for his next script slowly forms for Jordan Peele.


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Mark Kahn
Mark Kahn

As always, good stuff.

Two quick ones – why the heck isn’t the euro already weaker versus the dollar with interest-rate and growth differentials where they already are?

And, two, the only reason I know “reification” is because you used it a long time ago in “Ghost in the Machine” and I looked it up then (hey, I’m a product of a public school education from first grade to college degree). I love its Marxist roots. Despite being an ardent anti-collectivist and believing Marx was very wrong about most things, I acknowledge that he could still make his wrong ideas sound very right and smart – he was a talented writer and polemicist.