By Quentin Webb
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.
The decision by U.S. Congress last week reverse the so-called swaps ''pushout'' rule for certain derivatives contacts will put a greater responsibility on regulators to demonstrate they have effective oversight over bank activities of the sort that played a role in the 2008 financial crisis and 'London whale' trading debacle.
By Edward Chancellor
The author is a guest columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.
What is the glue which holds an economy together? Disciples of Adam Smith would argue that self-interest serves as the organising principle. The problem with this way of thinking is that it overlooks the fact that man is not an island unto himself. He is a social animal, who must have constant dealings with other people. Besides, according to John Maynard Keynes, it is impossible to pursue our self-interest rationally, because we don’t have enough information to make probabilistic judgments about the future. Instead, we must rely on irrational animal spirits as a spur to action.
The recent stretch of dire economic data from Germany is starting to bear an unfortunate resemblance to late 2008 – when Lehman Brothers collapsed and the world tipped into the worst recession since the Great Depression.
(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)
That custodian of the English language, the Oxford English Dictionary, describes a bubble as “anything fragile, unsubstantial, empty or worthless; a deceptive show”. Could this description apply to the current frenzy for “reform” that is seemingly sweeping the global economy? The answer is “yes, in part”. While there are some genuine attempts at reform, market expectations for reform will inevitably be disappointed in some parts of the world.