The Phaserl


Titanic Parallel to the Federal Reserve

by Gary Christenson, Deviant Investor:

Thinking about the 105th anniversary of the sinking Titanic, the Titanic-sized debt in the world, and the role of central bankers…

The RMS Titanic departed Southampton, England at noon on April 10, 1912 and struck an iceberg in the North Atlantic just before midnight on April 14. She sunk less than three hours later. Her maiden voyage lasted about 110 hours.

The Federal Reserve, the central bank of the United States, was created by congress late in 1913. Her “maiden voyage” devaluing the dollar has lasted over 103 years.

(All quotes and Titanic facts come from Wikipedia. Opinions are my own. Do your own thinking.)

The Titanic received six warnings about sea ice on April 14, but continued her journey at 22 knots (25 mph, 41 km/hr).

Per Wikipedia, “Titanic’s high speed in waters where ice had been reported was later criticized as reckless, but it reflected standard maritime practice at the time.

The Federal Reserve has held interest rates “near the zero bound” for over eight years and has been criticized for this practice, but some think such “accommodation” should be considered standard practice because of the monumental debt in the global financial system.

The Titanic was considered “unsinkable.” Further, icebergs were common in the North Atlantic in April and had previously caused few problems for ships.

The Federal Reserve is viewed by many as necessary, powerful, and likely to survive forever.

The Titanic hit an iceberg when visibility was low, just before midnight on a moonless night. “It was widely believed that ice posed little risk; close calls were not uncommon, and even head-on collisions had not been disastrous.”

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