Economic data, images, stories that matter from Adam Tooze. More organized and coherent than twitter. More freewheeling than what you might read from me in FT, Guardian, Foreign Policy, LRB, SocialEurope etc.

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Chartbook 121 likes 30 Aug 23
Is Russia’s war economy on the brink of crisis, or settling into a new “long-war” mode? With the ruble having fallen to new lows and fear of inflation stalking the headlines, the Russian economy, in the 18 month of its war in Ukraine, is under pressure. For many Russians to see their currency plunging through the threshold of 100 roubles to the dollar came as a rude psychological shock.
Chartbook 117 likes 03 Sep 23
Politicized memory plays strange tricks. To listen to influential Western voices in 2023 you might imagine that China emerged in December 2022 from long confinement in a zero-COVID prison, a regime dictated by the vanity of Xi Jinping, a regime which inflicted years of comprehensive and repressive lockdowns on a hapless population and revealed the threat posed by the unfettered power of the CCP.
Chartbook 112 likes 26 Aug 23
Europe’s centrist political class is looking anxiously towards elections for the European Parliament in 2024. What they fear is a “lurch” to the far-right. In Germany the AfD has surged to joint second place with Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s SPD in the polls. At 19 percent the AfD’s support is roughly twice what it was at the time of the last Bundestag election in September 2021.
Chartbook 105 likes 08 Sep 23
“The market for U.S. government debt (Treasuries) forms the bedrock of the global financial system. The ability of investors to sell Treasuries quickly, cheaply, and at scale has led to an assumption, in many places enshrined in law, that Treasuries are nearly equivalent to cash. Yet in recent years Treasury market liquidity has evaporated on several occasions and, in 2020, the market’s near collapse led to the most aggressive central bank intervention in history. … a high degree of convertibility between Treasuries and cash generally requires intermediaries that can augment the money supply, absorbing sales by expanding their balance sheets on both sides. The historical depth of the Treasury market was in large part the result of a concerted effort by policymakers to nurture and support such balance sheet capacity at a collection of non bankbroker-dealers. In 2008, the ability of these intermediaries to augment the money supply became impaired as investors lost confidence in their money-like liabilities (known as repos). Subsequent changes to market structure pushed substantial Treasury dealing further beyond the bank regulatory perimeter, leaving public finance increasingly dependent on high-frequency traders and hedge funds—“shadow dealers.” The near money issued by these intermediaries proved highly unstable in 2020. Policy makers are now focused on reforming Treasury market structure so that Treasuries remain the world’s most liquid asset class. Successful reform likely requires a legal framework that, among other things, supports elastic intermediation capacity through balance sheets thatcan expand and contract as needed to meet market needs.”
Chartbook 45 likes 20 Sep 23
The banking turmoil in March 2023 brought renewed attention to bank deposits. A quickening of deposit outflows at several banks – in part due to rising interest rates – prompted financial stability concerns. Rate hikes have also created incentives for depositors to shift away from banks in search of higher returns (Afonso et al (2023)).