Comments on: Broke bureaucrat of the day, St Louis Fed edition http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/ A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: robertwaldmann http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35902 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 14:57:05 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35902 Fischer seems to have an even stranger approach to money demand than to money supply. If my eyes don’t deceive me and I understand correctly he has $500,000 in checking accounts ? Why ? Is he preparing for a possible impulse purchase of an Island somewhere ?

It seems to me to be crazy to hold so much wealth in an account which pays near zero interest (my US checking account pays exactly zero, but I guess if you have a balance of hundreds of thousands you don’t focus on avoiding fees).

Fisher has a strong personal interest in low inflation since so much of his wealth is, for some incomprehensible reason, not in TIPS. This creates conflict of interests. I strongly suspect that he feels that he should, perhaps that he must, make sure that inflation is costly to him personally. I suspect that he would consider shielding himself from inflation to be immoral. That is, he feels morally obliged to have a personal interest at stake when making policy decisions. I guess this because I guess he considers inflation to be absolute evil (the way the Pope views birth control pills) so he considers having a personal interest in low inflation virtuous.

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By: robertwaldmann http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35903 Mon, 13 Feb 2012 14:57:05 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35903 Fischer seems to have an even stranger approach to money demand than to money supply. If my eyes don’t deceive me and I understand correctly he has $500,000 in checking accounts ? Why ? Is he preparing for a possible impulse purchase of an Island somewhere ?

It seems to me to be crazy to hold so much wealth in an account which pays near zero interest (my US checking account pays exactly zero, but I guess if you have a balance of hundreds of thousands you don’t focus on avoiding fees).

Fisher has a strong personal interest in low inflation since so much of his wealth is, for some incomprehensible reason, not in TIPS. This creates conflict of interests. I strongly suspect that he feels that he should, perhaps that he must, make sure that inflation is costly to him personally. I suspect that he would consider shielding himself from inflation to be immoral. That is, he feels morally obliged to have a personal interest at stake when making policy decisions. I guess this because I guess he considers inflation to be absolute evil (the way the Pope views birth control pills) so he considers having a personal interest in low inflation virtuous.

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By: Woltmann http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35614 Thu, 02 Feb 2012 17:52:23 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35614 Maybe he doesn’t trust banks and has it all squirrelled away in mayonaise jars buried in his back yard ..

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By: cnhedge http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35594 Thu, 02 Feb 2012 06:13:45 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35594 I admire Felix’s attidude, but it seems he overlooked Bullard’s hidden assets.

http://www.cnhedge.com

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By: bxg9 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35593 Thu, 02 Feb 2012 05:39:08 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35593 Yet again…
You are a blogger – you are entitled of course to post off the cuff opinions. But at this point, it’s clear to all that you were fundamentally wrong – and I’m willing to bet – please challenge me here! – that you realize this about some really basic premises of your post.
So now, if we read it, there is an incrediby vague “I might not have understood everything” footnote at the end if one reads thus far. What’s up? Do you really feel that there is some religious obligation not to alter one’s words once submitted, no matter how false they may be? This make little sense to me, but even if so why can
t you put your corrections at the front rather than in a footnote. Is this a traffic optimization thing?

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By: RogerNegotiator http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35589 Thu, 02 Feb 2012 01:35:57 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35589 MrChutney, as I posted above I believe Felix is way off, but I think you are probably incorrect about mutual funds. Although most federal employees do not have to disclose diversified mutual funds, it looks like the Fed does require disclosure. It’s hard to tell from Bullard’s form because it looks like he is using an older version of the form than the other filers used. But if you look at p 336 the instructions refer to excepted investment funds, which are defined on p 335 as diversified mutual funds. On most of the forms gathered by the Times, there is a column on Schedule A for identifying excepted investment funds. So disclosure of all mutual funds seems to be a Fed requirement. I agree with everything else you said.

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By: MrChutney http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35588 Thu, 02 Feb 2012 00:58:56 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35588 Felix I generally love your stuff but you may be way off on this story. Federal disclosure does not even require listing of mutual funds that hold diverse portfolios. Therefore no meaningful assessment can be made about Mr. Bullard’s assets or net worth. He may be due to his position abstaining from holding individual stocks, sector funds, and other particular securities to avoid conflict of interest. And as others have stated above, his TSP and pension would not have to be disclosed. He probably deserves our respect rather than be the target of insinuation. I would guess he is a dedicated civil servant. I think apologies are owed.

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By: jcsnotes http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35586 Thu, 02 Feb 2012 00:45:13 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35586 I’m unclear how you could write the sentence “I’m unclear on what that means” [re: the definition of deposit accounts within the scope of the disclosure form] and still keep this opinion piece up under the circumstances. Here’s hoping you get around to figuring out what it means before a few more people potentially get the wrong idea about this.

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By: maynardGkeynes http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35575 Wed, 01 Feb 2012 21:32:53 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35575 If he is nearing 30 years of Federal Service he probably has between $500K to $1M in TSP, assuming he contributed the IRS max every year. He’s probably closer to $600K, unless he timed the ups and downs of the C fund perfectly. He probably has his outside holdings in FDIC CDs, which tells you something also. Also, if his wife does not work, and he has kids in private school in the DC area, $300K/year isn’t enough to accumulate a fortune beyond his TSP. Maybe another $1M. My guess for his net worth is about $3M – $5M.

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By: DCGovEsq http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/01/broke-bureaucrat-of-the-day-st-louis-fed-edition/comment-page-1/#comment-35573 Wed, 01 Feb 2012 21:12:33 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=12074#comment-35573 Not sure what applies to the Fed as opposed to the financial disclosure reports that, as part of my job, I review for government officials, but the fact that some of his peers disclose the cash and similar accounts doesn’t necessarily mean he doesn’t have such accounts. It very well may mean that his peers overdisclosed.

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