Saturday, December 11, 2010

Back From Financial Ground Zero Two Years Ago

Below are charts of four different measures of financial stress and volatility, displayed over the last five years.  Taken together as a group, these four charts show that the overall conditions in the U.S. financial markets were at the worst levels in the fall of 2008, and they have now returned to their pre-recession levels of late 2007.  From the "financial ground zero" two years ago, the U.S. financial markets have made remarkable progress.    

Exhibit A.  The Kansas City Financial Stress Index:

Exhibit B. The St. Louis Financial Stress Index:
Exhibit C. The CBOE Volatility Index

Exhibit D. The Bloomberg U.S. Financial Conditions Index


At 12/11/2010 9:51 AM, Blogger morganovich said...

these all look like lagging indicators to me. (or at best coincident)

none of them provided any warning last time until we were already going over the cliff.

why would we expect them to be better in the future?

(note: i am not making an argument about the likelihood of a future crisis, an am questioning these tools as a means of seeing it coming if it were)

At 12/11/2010 12:02 PM, Blogger Buddy R Pacifico said...

The graphical representation of data certainly can be an effective way to communicate.

Exhibit D., The Bloomberg U.S. Financial Conditions Index, shows the 2008 plunge in a powerful way. Yikes, but it does show recovery as well.

At 12/11/2010 2:21 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

Die recession, die, die, die.

Now, let's hope the tax cuts and QE2 get us moving again.

Full steam ahead!!!

At 12/12/2010 11:30 AM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

The U.S. Financial Conditions Index shows deterioration in Jul or Aug '07, before the recession began in Dec '07.

The U.S. was on a path to a mild recession, until Lehman failed in Sep '08.

A mild recession and slow correction of imbalances would've been better than a severe recession and sudden correction of imbalances, because of fewer idle resources.

The 2001 recession was so mild that it wasn't a recession based on annual per capita real GDP growth.

So, it could be said the U.S. had a 16-year economic expansion, from 1991-07, the longest expansion in the history of the U.S., by far (longer than the 1982-90 or 1961-70 expansions, which are the second and third longest expansions).

At 12/13/2010 10:46 AM, Blogger juandos said...

I think we're all standing around at ground zero and yet not seeing what's getting ready to hit us...

Hit #1

Hit #2


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