07/16/19

Eyes on China

The US – China relationship was kicked into gear by President Trump on many levels. When he took office, the Chinese had just seized a dozen reefs and atolls in the South China Sea, fortified them, and installed advanced weaponry that could control sea lanes through which 40% of international commerce flowed. Every step of the way, the Chinese lied as to their intentions.

The Chinese said the initial sand reclamation programs were to stabilize the atolls, not to build 12,000 foot long runways capable of receiving or launching every plane in the Chinese military inventory.

President Trump and President-For-Life Xi met face-to-face and our President said things to Xi, things that had been left unsaid for decades.

“Hey, President-For-Life Xi, you Chinese are cheaters in the trade game. You’re stealing our tech, you’re manipulating your currency, and you’re blocking access to your markets to great American companies, all the while enjoying unfettered access to the American market. That isn’t right.”

“So what, Orange Man?” President-For-Life Xi retorted. “What are you going to do about it?”

“I’m going to talk shit at you — something I am very good at. I’m going to give you a chance to negotiate a trade treaty to fix these problems. Then, I am going to slap tariffs on you if we can’t make a deal. You need us a lot more than we need you.”

“Why don’t we negotiate about this, Mr. President Donald J Trump?” President-For-Life Xi asked, hoping the negotiations would be long and the status quo could be maintained. Maybe President-For-Life Xi hoped President Trump would not be re-elected. Who knows?

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07/28/18

India GDP

India GDP, Big Red? Huh?

Big Red Car here on a sunny Saturday in the ATX – On Earth As It Is In Texas!

Yeah, it’s going to be a warmish day, up to 100F. Yawn!

So, in the discussions about US GDP, the Big Red Car (huge fan of India) did some research on India. Did I tell you I am a huge fan of India as a country, as an ally, as a market? Love India.

India is a huge country with 1,354,000,000 people. The US has at least 1,000,000,000 fewer people.

US GDP is closing in on 20 Trillion dollars ($20,000,000,000,000) annually, while India has a GDP of $2,597,490,000,000.

Wow, look at that growth! In ten years they have grown by a factor of more than twenty!

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07/27/18

GDP Growth 4.1% – do not overreact

GDP, Big Red Car? Huh?

Big Red Car here on a lovely, warm Texas summer day – sun shining and headed to 101F. Ahhh, summer!

Something else which is hot is the economy. It is hot as evidenced by today’s GDP number which shows growth in excess of 4%. This is Q3 2018 (April, May, June 2018). US starts its fiscal year in October, but you knew that, right?

Couple this with low unemployment, high job growth, the beginning of real wage growth, increased capital spending, and some progress on the issue of trade and it is easy to see why the President was in the Rose Garden taking a victory lap.

When pressed to explain why growth has begun to accelerate, President Trump and his economic advisers pointed to reductions in regulations, the tax cuts, and the beginning of work on trade. They had a few other things, but those are the big ones.

The most important thing is that the White House is trying to create a fertile environment for growth. That is more important than many of the elements.

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