EDITORIAL: Russia Exposed as the Black Sheep of BRIC

EDITORIAL

Russia Exposed as the Black Sheep of BRIC

Russia as Black Sheep

Russia as Black Sheep

A devastating new study by the Frontier Strategy Group reveals that a large cross section of international investors has rejected Russia when comparing it with the other members of the so-called “BRIC” group.  Nearly twice as many investors in the group thought Brazil would be a “top-3” investing opportunity in the next three years as thought Russia would be, and China and India were right behind Brazil. Russia’s level of support as a top-3 candidate was rivaled by the likes of Columbia and Thailand and bested by tiny, backward Vietnam.  Russia was also soundly thrashed by Mexico.  “It was incredibly surprising to us how quickly people had abandoned Russia,” said Alex Turkeltaub, Frontier Strategy Group’s chairman, to the Wall Street Journal.

This was hardly the kind of news Russian “president” Dima Medvedev was looking for when he attended the BRIC summit last week. 

As we revealed in our editorial last issue, financial analysts simply mocked Medvedev’s crazy notion that is country’s currency could become an international reserve standard, the stock market plummeted and to cap it all off FSG called into serious question whether Russia should even have been invited to the summit in the first place.

According to Goldman Sachs:  “For the years 2011 to 2050, Goldman is projecting annual rates of growth of 4.3% for Brazil, 5.2% for China, 6.3% for India and only 2.8% for Russia.”   That’s right, Russia’s growth rate over the next four decades will be less than half that of  India, barely half that of China and woefully far behind Brazil.  Unlike any of those countries, Russia stands out as totally dependent on crude energy prices, having totally failed to develop a diversified economy as they have done.

FSG believes that Russia does not belong in BRIC because of its 

failure to diversify its economy away from oil and gas meant it didn’t grow between commodity cycles. Unlike Brazil and China, there was little evidence that a broad middle class was emerging in Russia with bulging wallets and the confidence to spend. And with its declining population, Russia’s demographics were less attractive than, say, those of Mexico.  Russia has been hit much harder by recession than the other three: industrial output is 15.4% down on last year and gross domestic product declined nearly 10% in the first quarter. Brazil’s economy, in contrast, is already showing signs of pulling out of recession and could return to growth in the second half of this year, according to officials.

Ouch.  Those are bitterly humiliating facts for Russia to swallow at any time, but to have them released just at the very moment of a BRIC summit is a brutal blow to the Medvedev/Putin regime.  Maybe it a hopeful sign of the beginning of the end.

83 responses to “EDITORIAL: Russia Exposed as the Black Sheep of BRIC

  1. Russia still remains the only country to secure the resources of Brazil, India, Argentina, Indonesi, Vietnam and Iran from the US nazi state. All of those countries see Russia as the best hedge fund for their fast growing economies. That partly explains why Ekaterinburg not Jakarta was chosen ground for their summit.

  2. What in the world does the phrase “to secure the resources of” mean?

    But, then, again what does it matter in what has to be one of the most illiterate and incoherent comments to grace any blog.

    Finish high school and then get back to us.

    • > What in the world does the phrase
      > “to secure the resources of” mean?

      I think he is not a native English-speaker and by “secure of” meant “protect”.

      Can you, in your kind and understanding russo-phobic heart, forgive those mentally inferior foreigners for their inability to write English quite as well as you do?

  3. Penny, it makes perfect sense to me you dumb rag!

  4. From Bloomberg yesterday

    The Russian economy shrank an annual 9.8 percent in the first quarter, the most in 15 years, as companies struggled to raise funds and falling incomes crimped consumer demand. Industrial output shrank a record annual 17.1 percent in May.

    “Some of Russia’s main industrial production data was disappointing and is a reminder that the real economy is going to be impacted quite severely this year,” said Michael Wang, an emerging-markets strategist at Morgan Stanley in London. “There is not going to be a quick V-shaped recovery in Russia.”

    Earnings for Russian companies may tumble 61 percent in 2009 before rebounding 12 percent next year, according to forecasts from Citigroup Inc. in New York. That compares with a 24 percent decline this year for developing nations as a whole, and a 23 percent increase in 2010, the brokerage’s data showed.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aNVAJ8fu0aaY

    And with oil falling precipitously again there is no way out for the siloviki but to pray that the opposition doesn’t win in their client state, Iran.

    A more liberal unsanctioned Iran would kill their oil prices more and might give the folks at home ideas. Plus the funding for Hamas and Hezbollah in a regime change would dry up. Russia would be running out of thug states to partner with.

    • ——————————–
      QUOTE:

      And with oil falling precipitously again there is no way out for the siloviki but to pray that the opposition doesn’t win in their client state, Iran.

      A more liberal unsanctioned Iran would kill their oil prices more and might give the folks at home ideas. Plus the funding for Hamas and Hezbollah in a regime change would dry up. Russia would be running out of thug states to partner with.

      END QUOTE
      ———————–

      Excuse me, Penny, but what do you expect from the “opposition” in Iran? Don’t you know that they favour pretty much the same foreign policy as Ahmadenijad does, including developing powerful nukes and destroying Israel?

      What would change in the international arena if one regime in Iran were replaced by another one with a similar foreign policy?

      http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/is-mousavi-a-%E2%80%98reformer%E2%80%99/

      Mousavi is the one who initiated Iran’s nuclear program when he was prime minister in the 1980s. He also founded Hezbollah as Iran’s proxy terrorist group in Lebanon, and was responsible for deploying the elite Revolutionary Guard, now behind the shooting and clubbing people on the streets of Tehran, into southern Lebanon.

      http://origin2.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,512770,00.html

      Iran’s Reform Candidate, Mir Hossein Mousavi, Says Open to U.S. Negotiations

      Mousavi said talks with the United States would be beneficial, as long as Iran does not have to “pay heavy costs such as the deprivation of advanced technologies,” a reference to Iran’s disputed nuclear activities.

      “We have to have the technology,” Mousavi said, adding that the consequences of giving up the country’s nuclear program would be “irreparable” and that the Iranian people support the nuclear program.

      Many Iranians across the political spectrum have rallied behind the country’s nuclear program which is considered a source of national pride.

      Mousavi came to prominence after the 1979 Islamic Revolution that toppled the U.S.-backed shah.

      He served briefly as foreign minister, then was prime minister from 1981-1989. His premiership spanned the destructive eight-year war with Iraq, in which at least a million people on both sides were killed.

  5. Now show us American stats!

    • For what?

      Life expectancy?
      Alcohol dependency?
      GDP?
      Average salary?
      Quality of life?
      Life expectancy of a locally produced vehicle?
      Racial attacks?
      Road quality?
      Press freedom?
      Corruption?

      • >> Now show us American stats!

        > For what?

        > Racial attacks?

        That would be a nice start. You can start with what happened just a few days ago:

        http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31237522/

        Associated Press

        Thurs., June 11, 2009

        WASHINGTON – An 88-year-old white supremacist was charged with murder Thursday, a day after he left a signed anti-Semitic screed in his car outside the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, then gunned down a security guard who opened the door to let him in, officials said.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hate_crime#United_States

        According to the FBI Hate Crime Statistics report for 2006, hate crimes increased nearly 8 percent nationwide, with a total of 7,722 incidents and 9,080 offenses reported. More than half, 52 percent, of the 9,652 victims identified were targeted because of racial group. Attorney General Eric Holder said in June 2009 that recent killings show….

  6. penny –
    who said “every response is a lifeline”? :) Now Mr.JackDaniels demanding you to show American stats… or else he won’t believe a word you say.

    • Felix, Mr Jack is the newest sockpuppet incarnation of one of our resident birdbrained trolls. It’s so obvious.

      I have no intention of responding. The question is too stupid and the typical distraction. It was enough to call him out directly as a sockpuppet.

      Your thoughts on the outcome in Iran? An oustered Ahmadinejad would cause lots of panic in the Kremlin.

      • If the Iranians can keep it up, then maybe Green will be the new Orange!

        Vchera Kiev
        Segodnya Tehran
        Zavtra Moskva!

      • Dou you seriously think that Moussavi is somewhat different from Ahmadinejad? :-) What we see in Iran is just nothing than a visible reflection of a hidden power struggle for some economic reasons, between two factions among the Ayatollahs. Thus, portraying Moussavi (a former PM who started a nuclear program and Rafsanjani’s protege, by the way!) as a ‘liberal’ is either wishful thinking or (to be exact, and) lack of journalist professionalism of those covering the events in Iran.

        • Actually, no – I have to agree with you there. All four Iranian candidates were thoroughly vetted by the mullahs and all the others who may have promoted any real change were quietly disqualified.

          But the real issue here is not who will win, but rather that for the first time in thirty years, the Iranian people are taking power into their own hands, and that is something tangible that can’t simply be taken away. Whether Ahmadinejad or Mousavi end up as president, they will know that they will be held accountable for their actions, and that does make a difference.

          And it is a very contagious phenomenon, which is why Putin became so scared after Kiev in the first place.

          Vchera Kiev
          Segodnya Tehran
          Zavtra Moskva!

    • Just for you, here are the stats:

      According to the FBI Hate Crime Statistics report for 2006, hate crimes increased nearly 8 percent nationwide, with a total of 7,722 incidents and 9,080 offenses reported. More than half, 52 percent, of the 9,652 victims identified were targeted because of racial group.

      Happy?

  7. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8068046.stm

    Russian economic slide worsening

    Russia’s economy contracted sharply in April – shrinking by 10.5% from the same month a year ago – Deputy Economy Minister Andrei Klepach has said.

    The data came as officials were quoted as saying Russia would have a budget deficit equivalent to 9% of GDP in 2009, from an earlier 7.4% prediction.

    • > Russia would have a budget deficit
      > equivalent to 9% of GDP in 2009

      http://money.cnn.com/2009/01/07/news/economy/cbo_2009_budget_outlook/index.htm.

      January 7, 2009

      $1.2 trillion deficit looms

      Housing collapse and financial turmoil leads to steep rise in estimated U.S. shortfall for ’09, Congressional Budget Office says.

      NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — The U.S. budget deficit in 2009 is projected to spike to a record $1.2 trillion, or 8.3% of gross domestic product, the Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday.

      Another interesting statistic:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/US_budget_deficit

      United States public debt

      As of June 2009 the debt was 82.5% of GDP.

      —————————

      How much of that is owed to China and other BRIC countries?

  8. I don’t understand what’s to debate.

    Russia’s predominately dependent on oil, particularly, and other natural resources, too. In order to earn money (I’m going to keep it simple for the Mr. Jack (Offs) here), the government must export, sorry, “sell,” its crude/raw materials to other industrially diversified, sorry, more-than-one-trick-pony countries; e.g., the US, China and Western European countries.

    Since industrial production has significantly declined in the US, China and Western European countries, their purchases, sorry, “buying,” of crude/raw materials is down; so Russia’s sales are down; so Russia’s revenues, sorry, “money,” is down.

    Now, just run this in reverse, and that’s when the Russian economy will “recover,” being the ‘ho that it is.

    • I agree. In order to prosper, permanently and in long term, one has to make something. If that “something” is oil and raw materials, the prosperity is not going to be sustain as depending on just these is simply foolish.

    • Actually, what surpirses me is how OPEC is managing to keep the oil proces high, given the huge drop of the demand curve.

  9. I find this amusing, Russia and Chavez are opening a joint bank which looks pretty undercapitalized with a capitalization of $4 billion for starters. Count on it never happening as both oil thug states have treasuries that are drying up fast.

    The bank will be 51-percent owned by Russia through the state-controlled lenders VTB and Gazprombank, with the rest going to various Venezuelan partners, Russian Deputy Finance Minister Dmitry Pankin told reporters.

    The new bank is due to be created by the end of 2009, Pankin said.

    http://www.breitbart.com/e.php?id=CNG.1debc0c644600c07a24e054a4ded5f8d.71&show_article=1

    Poor Russia, a parish with the democratic and the decent, partnered up with the world’s most repulsive thugs.

    Venezuela is a key partner for Russia in South America, where Moscow is trying to expand its reach mainly through arms and energy deals.

  10. penny

    With your out of the range ability to make complicated things look simple and sure visible signs of an over-educated person you’d better change your profile and start a new blog with sort of “Let’s talk about the greatness of America and forget about the rest of the world” including Russia story line.

    Why Russia, not Zimbabwe or Paragway after all is on your hit list? Canada is another good country for your intellectual concentration and not too far off. Why Russia let me ask you again and again?

    As for me I am more in favor of the Canadian global domination. Let’s better discuss that issue and forget about Russia. Let me just imagine “La Canadaphobe” blog instead of “La Russophobe”.

    Penny

    Why not?

  11. > Poor Russia, a parish with the
    > democratic and the decent,
    > partnered up with the world’s
    > most repulsive thugs.

    We are talking about BRIC?

    Bull. Even though China is still Communist, Russia’s two other partners – Brazil and India are no “repulsive thugs”.

    The most repulsive thugs are the US rulers who committed international crimes when they attacked Yugoslavia in 1999 and Iraq in 2003 without pre-approval from the UN, as the international law requires.

    And if we talk about “rogue nations capable of dropping nukes on other countries”, let us recall that so far, the only country deranged and rogue enough to actually drop nukes on innocent civilians (or on anybody else for that matter) is USA. Twice.

    Of course, at the time this nuking was justified by the American beleif that “Japs” (as they lovingly refer to the Japanese people) are racially inferior to white Americans.

    • No, the most repulsive thugs are Russian rulers, who comitted ethnic cleansing of the Georgian majority in Abkhazia 1992-94, the ethnic cleansing of Georgians from South Ossetia in 1992 & 2008, the ethnic cleansing of Ingush from North Ossetia in 1992, the attempted extermination of the Chechens in two genocidal campaigns, the support and arming of genocidal regimes in Serbia, Sudan, Burma, and just about every other petty dictator on the planet, in violation of UN arms embargoes and international law.

      And just yesterday Medvedev has authorised Putins little boyfriend in Chechnya to begin torturing Ingush (he has probably grown bored of torturing Chechens).

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/5613984/Kremlin-authorises-Chechen-president-to-torture-Ingushetia-rebels.html

  12. And lets not forget Serbian crimes in Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia, Kosovo et al.

    Really, they did kind of ask for the 1999 intervention.

    Not that I agree with the independance of Kosovo, there should have been a guaranteed autonomy due to the interwoven towns and villages.

  13. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(real)_per_capita_growth_rate

    Rank of countries by GDP (real) per capita growth rate (latest year: 2006)

    13 China 10.1%
    24 India 7.7%
    27 Russian Federation 7.2%
    .
    .
    .

    118 Brazil 2.4%
    127 United Kingdom 2.2%
    133 United States 1.9%

    of course, that was in 2006. In 2007 and 2008, when the oil prices went through the roof, I bet Russian GDP grew faster than China’s and India’s.

  14. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP)_per_capita

    List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita

    CIA World Factbook

    57 Russia $15,800

    81 Brazil $10,100

    106 China $6,000

    136 India $2,800

    ———————–

    LR wrote:

    > Ouch. Those are bitterly humiliating facts for Russia to swallow

    You mean, having a per capita GDP which is more than 3 times higher than that for the other three members of BRIC combined? Why? Should Russia be at least 5 times wealthier? Just wait, and this too may soon come to fruition.

    • Obviously maths is not Ostaps strongpoint.

      Russian GDP Per Cap is $15800
      Combined Brazil, China, India is $18900

      As usual Ostap is a lying idiot.

      • Sorry, Andrew, but you are not smart enough to grasp the concept of “per capita” average. Averages don’t simply add up. They are weighted, with weights adding up to 1.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_capita

        Per capita

        It is usually used in the field of statistics to indicate the average per person for any given concern, such as income, crime rate, etc.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weighted_average

        The weighted mean is similar to an arithmetic mean (the most common type of average), where instead of each of the data points contributing equally to the final average, some data points contribute more than others. The notion of weighted mean plays a role in descriptive statistics and also occurs in a more general form in several other areas of mathematics.

        • Boy, Andrew, you sure know how to step into bula-bula. You are beginning to repalce LR as my favourite poster boy/girl for my theory that:

          Ethnophobia => Underdevelopment of mathematical, logical and reading comprehension brain functions

        • More than smart enough bender boy, but considering that the “averages” are somewhat skewed by the insanely rich ruling classes in Russia, and using the figures you provided, Russian GDP is less than the 3 combined BRIC members.
          Combined with the Russian penchant for lies and falsifications, well you get the picture.

          In addition, the economies of China, Brazil, and India continue to grow, by around 6 to 7% projected for this year.

          Russia on the other hand contracted by an official 7% in the first quarter of 2009.
          Combined with an inflation rate of around 13%, and the fact that Russian banks require massive recapitalisation to avoid collapse, its looking much grimmer for Russia than anyone else.

          The fact that the Russian economy is entirely dependant on raw materials exports (almost nobody buys Russian made junk these days), and that Russia has a rapidly shrinking and ageing population, the writing is on the wall, and eastern Europe and other states that suffered Russian opression can breath a huge sig of relief.

          • > Russian GDP is less than the 3 combined BRIC members.

            Of course the Russian GDP itself is less than China’s. Russia is about 10 times smaller in population size that China or India. I am talking about the “per capita” figures. Since I didn’t expect you to know what the term “per capita” means, I gave you the definition. But, evidently, that’s not enough to make you understand simple mathematical concepts.

            • The per capita figures show that Russian PER CAPITA GPS is less than the combined total for the other BRIC nations.

              Learn to read bender boy.

              • Just for you, I input all GDP and population figures for Brasil, China and India into Excel, and got the following numbers:

                The combined GDP of Brazil, China and India is $13 184 624 200 000

                The combined population of Brazil, China and India is 2 688 252 000

                Therefore, the per capita GDP of “Brazil, China and India combined” is $4 904

                The per capita GDP of Russia is $15 800

                Since $15 800 is more than 3 times larger than $4 900, the per capita GDP for “Russia” is more than 3 times larger than the per capita GDP for “the other three members of BRIC combined”.

                Is this enough detail for you, moron?

                God, why do I have to waste my time on elementary school dropouts like you? This is the last time I am doing this.

                • Oh now bender boy, I am so sorry to distract you from your hobby of tuning choir boys.
                  Please, please dont be mad.

                  None the less, the per capita GDP figures are as follows (from your previous post)

                  List of countries by GDP (PPP) per capita

                  CIA World Factbook

                  57 Russia $15,800

                  81 Brazil $10,100

                  106 China $6,000

                  136 India $2,800

                  These are the official figures, and as has been commented frequently, they are the ones that count. Wieghted or not.

                  “In the Economy category, GDP dollar estimates for countries are reported both on an official exchange rate (OER) and a purchasing power parity (PPP) basis. Both measures contain information that is useful to the reader. The PPP method involves the use of standardized international dollar price weights, which are applied to the quantities of final goods and services produced in a given economy. The data derived from the PPP method probably provide the best available starting point for comparisons of economic strength and well-being between countries. In contrast, the currency exchange rate method involves a variety of international and domestic financial forces that may not capture the value of domestic output. Whereas PPP estimates for OECD countries are quite reliable, PPP estimates for developing countries are often rough approximations. In developing countries with weak currencies, the exchange rate estimate of GDP in dollars is typically one-fourth to one-half the PPP estimate. Most of the GDP estimates for developing countries are based on extrapolation of PPP numbers published by the UN International Comparison Program (UNICP) and by Professors Robert Summers and Alan Heston of the University of Pennsylvania and their colleagues. GDP derived using the OER method should be used for the purpose of calculating the share of items such as exports, imports, military expenditures, external debt, or the current account balance, because the dollar values presented in the Factbook for these items have been converted at official exchange rates, not at PPP. One should use the OER GDP figure to calculate the proportion of, say, Chinese defense expenditures in GDP, because that share will be the same as one calculated in local currency units. Comparison of OER GDP with PPP GDP may also indicate whether a currency is over- or under-valued. If OER GDP is smaller than PPP GDP, the official exchange rate may be undervalued, and vice versa. However, there is no strong historical evidence that market exchange rates move in the direction implied by the PPP rate, at least not in the short- or medium-term. Note: the numbers for GDP and other economic data should not be chained together from successive volumes of the Factbook because of changes in the US dollar measuring rod, revisions of data by statistical agencies, use of new or different sources of information, and changes in national statistical methods and practices.”

                  In addition Russia has a collapsing infrastructure, collapsing industrial output, a collapsing population.

                  China and India on the other hand have expanding infrastucture, increasing population (though also at risk of rapidly ageing in China due to the one child policy), increasing industrial output, and in addition are not hated by their customers, they also understand a little thing called diplomacy, something somewhat lacking in Russia.

                  • > These are the official figures

                    Actually, these are not the “official figures”. These are the figures that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the United States arrived at using all the information available to it:

                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CIA_World_Fact_Book

                    The World Factbook (ISSN 1553-8133; also known as the CIA World Factbook)[2] is a reference resource produced by the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States.

                    The World Factbook is prepared by the CIA for the use of U.S. government officials, and its style, format, coverage, and content are primarily designed to meet their requirements.[4] However, it is frequently used as a resource for academic research papers.[5] As a work of the U.S. government, it is in the public domain.[6]

          • > In addition, the economies of China, > Brazil, and India continue to grow,
            > by around 6 to 7% projected for this year.

            Andrew, child, please understand the simple fact that nobody can see into the future, especially in these volatile recession times.

            “Projections” are worth nothing.
            I am willing to bet that in the current depression/recession, the economies of almost all non-oil exporting countries, including China, Brasil and India, will not grow by 6%. In fact, it would be a miracle if they grew at all, unless you count inflation as “growth”.

          • > In addition, the economies of China,
            > Brazil, and India continue to grow,
            > by around 6 to 7% projected for this year.

            Don’t beleive everything your mommy tells you to put you to sleep at night. There is no Santa Clause.

            http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8091632.stm

            Brazil’s economy enters recession

            Brazil has gone into recession after its economy contracted by 0.8% in the first three months of 2009.

            • Wow, 0.8%, hardly compares to more than 7% contraction for Russia.

              • You were claiming a 6% expansion instead of a 0.8% contraction, cretin.

                • Ostap –

                  If you really cared about Russia, you’d want to see expansion. Everywhere. Even in that nasty evil USA.

                  See when people have money, they buy things, like… oil.

                  When people buy oil, other people selling the oil get to charge more money for it. This is called supply and demand.

                  This in turn means Russia makes more money.

                  So, what you see is what’s actually happening. When the Dow goes up, so does the price of oil, and therefore the Russian economy. Likewise, when the Dow goes down, so does the price of oil and therefore the Russian economy.

                  Now the other part of this equation is that oil is a commodity rather than a stock or a bond. Commodity trading is more volatile. This means that when the Dow goes up, the price of oil goes up A LOT. So the RTS goes up from about 500 to 1000.

                  But the other side of that is that when the Dow goes down, the price of oil CRASHES. So the RTS goes from 2250 to 500.

                  Now, if you have 2250 rubles, and someone steals 1750 from you and then gives you back 500, is that a good thing or a bad thing?

                  That is Russia’s current situation.

                  And if you want to see how other nations in Russia are faring, you can’t look to BRIC, you have to look to OPEC, which, like Russia, are a bunch of semi-successful Petrostates.

                  The two most developed of them are Dubai and Iran. (OK Dubai isn’t really it’s own country, but when we talk of economic miracles, we don’t say “UAE”, we say “Dubai.”)

                  Dubai right now is a nation of Mercedes abandoned at the airport as people are desperately trying to get out.

                  Iran right now is in the midst of a pretty bloody uprising, although it remains to be seen how it will turn out. The only thing we know for sure is that the Emperor’s clothes has been shown for what they really are in Iran.

                  And Russia’s turn is coming.

                  Vchera Kiev
                  Segodnya Tehran
                  Zavtra Moskva!

  15. What I love is LR’s ability to satirize the stupidity of russophobes by writing clever parodies on them.

    Let’s take Wall Street companies. They are the symbol of total and utter stupidity and deception. Only moron couldn’t see that the US real estate, equity and mortgage markets were huge balloons ready to burst. Everybody, even my house cleaner, could forecast the collapse. Only Goldman Sachs and the other Wall Street “experts” couldn’t. In fact, even as the markets were already collapsing, the Wall Street couldn’t notice it. Only when the collapse was finished, did the Wall Street notice. By that time, most of the Wall Street – AIG, Freddy Mack, Fannie Mae, Lehman, Bear Stearns, Bank of America, CityCorp – were bankrupt. So much so that the US taxpayers had to give them $hundreds of billions in order to prevent the rest, including Goldman Sachs, from collapsing as well.

    Now, with the American people laughing through tears at the Wall Street’s inability to foresee more than 2 seconds into the future, if that, LR comes up with a great joke at their expense: saying that any prediction made by Goldman for year 2050 – forty one years from now! – is THE TRUTH:

    > That’s right, Russia’s growth rate over the next four
    > decades will be less than half

    That’s right: it WILL BE!

    Brilliant satire, LR! Keep up your great job of parodying retards.

  16. Ostap Bender

    Count on me man. We’ll do that bunch of russophobes in.

    They seem to be still talking about GDPs of countries totally unknown to most of them. My best advice would be to talk about the lubrication of the US printning machine and the lack of green paper presently in the US. There’s nothing left behind their printing machine but verbal trash about democracy. They are an outcast nation hated everywhere you go be that Brasil or Turkey. Bric group is a natural response of more productive nations to the US faked money.
    The world has got simply tired of the US and its idiotic presidents.

  17. Well I am not a Russia hater…..the premise here is actually frustration at the Russian People. How does such a society continue to fail at every sector? Why doesnt the Russian people rise up? I believe most societies in the modern world see Russia as consistantly underacheiving. Is it fear, laziness etc? Most of the world sees Russia as a place with great potential that seems to materialize. The west wants great things for the Russian People, unfortunately the Russian People are not willing to put down the vodka, roll up their sleeves and get to work.

  18. correction NEVER Seems To Materialize

  19. That Russian black sheep of Bric group still remains the only country of the world capable to make cockroaches the only residents of the USA in 20 minutes Let it be the Russian share to the future prosperity of Bric and that’s exactly what makes Americans and their $$$-clients crazy about Russia and what most Russians are well aware of.

  20. Hey, Bender

    It’s not OPEC, you economically challenged idiot, that ultimately sets oil prices, it’s the futures market. Oil, the USD, commodities and Gold have a trading correlation too that figures into oil prices, but, with your superior economic skills I’ll let you figure that out as well. Oh, and, swiping stale CNN headlines counts for nothing. It’s amateur hour.

    Oh, and, the US debt isn’t “owed” to China and the BRIC’s. That’s not exactly how it works. Simplistic, but, revealingly ignorant again on your part.

    And, if only “a moron” couldn’t see the collapse of US real estate why them did China and every country on the planet keep buying US Treasuries and USD’s then? They were all morons? And when Japan’s real estate collapsed in the ’80’s the world was full of morons too?

    Things happen, you unsophisticated fool, economies have had downturns in cycles since the history of commerce began. So what else is new?

    And, cherry picking from 2006 some link to hate crime stat isn’t going to get you far either.

    Don’t bother replying as after this post you are on ignore with me. My questions were rhetorical. One reponse per new troll(?) or most likelythe new sockpuppetrts’s serves up daily is all I care to engage in.

    Whoever you are you are an idiot.

    • Penny,

      You sure know how to pick your fights, darling.

      I am in a total agreement with you that one of us is rude, insulting, ignorant, pompous and retarded. The only question is which one.

      I have a Ph.D. in mathematical finance from Stanford and many years of experience working on Wall Street as a fixed income derivatives trader.

      You have at least 60 years of experience of going to Shoppaholics Anonymous, Sufferers of Phobias Anonymous, Xenophobes Anonymous, and Hate Mongers Anonymous meetings.

      However, I am still going to insist that if China holds, say, a US bond with face value of $100 dollars, then effectively, the US treasury owes about $100 to China, modulo some variation in the yield curve.

      I also believe that greatest economic factor effecting the spot price of oil are the supply volumes that OPEC countries have set for themselves.

      > And, cherry picking from 2006 some link to hate crime

      Cherry pick? LOL. I have no time to cherry pick. I just went to Wikipedia and posted a link from there. If you have different data – feel free to post it.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hate_crime#United_States

      And good luck at your next Victims of the Foot-in-the-Mouth Disease meeting.

      • Ostap –

        I can’t say I’ve had the formal training you had, but I can give you one experience I have had regarding OPEC and cartel-economics which is quite revealing, especially considering the present-day situation.

        When I was younger, I was big into model UN’s. (What can I say? I was young, idealistic, stupid, and Rwanda hadn’t happened yet.) One particular lunch, they had one of those “Eat by GDP” meals, only in this case, each sector of the world economy got different tickets which they were to trade, mostly different kinds of foods you would order, so the US and Europe nations got the meat, Asia got rice, South America got coffee and so on. Actually, most of the regions got three or four separate kinds of coupons, with one exception.

        As a member of OPEC, I and several of my comrades only got one kind of ticket – an “oil” ticket. But this was good – we couldn’t eat oil of course, but nobody else could eat without it.

        And for the first thirty minutes we had the best of it and then some. The going cartel price was something around forty tickets of various price, but as an econ whiz, you probably know what happened next.

        We started getting hungry and underselling our comrades. Soon enough, there were a lot of people stuck with a useless pile of yellow tickets. (I was one of the lucky ones who got out of the oil market early.)

        To this day, that has been the best lesson on cartelization that I have ever received.

        • Excuse me, Scott, but what oil were you served? Olive?

          And why couldn’t other people eat without oil? I personally am a gourmet cook but use oils quite seldom, as I view frying not to be the best way to prepare delicious and healthy foods, and prefer yoghurts/sour creams over oils in salad dressings.

          While I agree that OPEC is not a monopolist and is even not totally immune to “subversion” and “defection” from within, I don’t see how your story relates to that.

          On a side note, if we were fair, we would assign coffee not to South America but to Africa, where it originally comes from; as its name “arabica” also indicates. What comes from America is cocoa not coffee.

          Nor, afaik, does South America produce the best coffee in the World, no matter what Juan “Exxon” Valdez tells you in the commercials for “mountain grown Colombian coffee”. I think the quality of Colombian coffee is not nearly as high as that of Colombia’s other famous agricultural export. :-)

          • OK – Let me restate because obviously I was not clear.

            1) This was a simulation in which differnt people were different countries, or more accurately groups of countries.

            2) The food basis, although partially based on what regions exported, was not exact. Africa, for example, got dessert, not because it makes great desserts or even because it is a major exporter of chocolate, but just to keep things even.

            3) By oil, I mean petroleum. All us OPEC types got these yellow tickets that represented sweet light crude. If you wanted to get food AT ALL, you needed a yellow ticket.

            I hope this helps you understand the rest of the story, and what it demonstrates about politics and economics as it relates to oil and the volatile fates of petrostates.

          • Oh, this should be obvious, but let me say it anyway. Before trading started, the OPEC types were the only ones with yellow tickets – so if you wanted to eat, you needed to deal with us. Of course, yellow tickets were all we had, so we couldn’t eat unless we did some trading either.

            • So, the moral is that OPEC countires need to sell enough oil to be able to maintain an acceptable standard of living in terms of all those other goodies like food, clothes, cars, TVs, etc?

              • Partly – mostly it’s that living on an oil-based economy, much like living on any other economy based effectively exclusively on one commodity is existence on a razor’s edge. And expecting that the good times will last forever is the epitome of folly for the leader of a petrostate.

                • Somehow I doubt if Qatar, whose per capita GDP is more than double that of USA, is too worried. Neither are Brunei and Kuwait, whose standard of living is also higher than in USA.

                  But I am touched by your sincere desire to help Russia diversify its economy.

                  • There’s a solution! You can reduce your population by 95% so you have a Qatar/Kuwait/Bahrain sized economy. Plus ain’t it funny how the three most pro-American petrostates in the Middle East also happen to be the most successful ones? While the pro-Russian ones can’t even get GASOLINE?

  21. The time has changed. Time to mop off the floor US fake money. Clear to everyone – the US has become unproductive global parasit. The days when the word ‘America’ was associated with liberty, equality and freedom of opportunity have long gone. Now the word America is mostly associated with depleted uranium shells, agent orange, humanitarian bombings of other, preferably small, New-Jersey size nations and massacres committed in the name of democracy and God in ten thousand miles from its own shores. American nation is infected, infected with lack of respect for other nations, which is reflected in complete immorality in the US foreign policy. Americans are nice guys all around in case they don’t want to bomb you. They simply take other nations as sub human filth for the exception of Israel and Britain, maybe.

  22. Hey, penny

    Iran has broken the petrodollar stranglehold imposed in the 1970s, when OPEC entered into a covert agreement with the United States to sell oil only in U.S. dollars. the rest of the world has lost its willingness to finance the United States’ proclivity to consume far more than it produces – and that a potentially disastrous free-fall in the dollar’s value would result. The world has been a willing partner in American excess. If OPEC as a whole were to switch from dollars to euros, the consequences to the US economy would be catastrophic. Investment money would flee the country, real estate values would plummet, and Americans would shortly find themselves living in Third-World conditions.

    Currently, if any country wishes to obtain dollars with which to buy oil, it can do so only by selling its goods or resources to the US, taking out a loan from a US bank (or the World Bank – functionally the same thing), or trading its currency on the open market and thus devaluing it. The US is in effect importing goods and services virtually for free, its massive trade deficit representing a huge interest-free loan from the rest of the world. If the dollar were to cease being the world’s reserve currency, all of that would change overnight ….

    Whoever you are penny, you are an idiot too.

    • rts,
      For a country that only consumes and produces nothing, the U.S. exported $1.84 trillion last year, the whole Russian GDP was only $2.25 trillion. Most of the U.S. trade deficit is imported oil, we’ll get that fixed in time, but not without some pain. You should try reading something besides anti-American propaganda for a change.

  23. Ostap Bender II said:

    I have a Ph.D. in mathematical finance from Stanford and many years of experience working on Wall Street as a fixed income derivatives trader.

    The author of Ostap Bender would add:

    Парад, надо сказать
    правду, не ладился, и великий комбинатор лгал, утверждая, что
    чувствует себя отлично.

    • Well, that’s easy to check. Товарищ Бендер, tells us please which of the following forms a martingale under risk-neutral measure:

      a) stock price itself
      b) discounted stock price
      c) futures price itself
      d) discounted futures price

      • In their original work, Black and Scholes modeled their famous stock option price equation on stock price itself being a martingale.

        Are you studying to be a financial engineer someday, Boba?

        • Who wants to be a financial engineer after this spectacular collapse?

          • Certainly not I. I haven’t been on Wall Street since 2001, mainly because I prefer California over New York. I worked at an invesment bank in Russia for a couple more years after that, but the work was trivial from the mathematical point of view, unless you count useless “oferty” /options/ tagged on to some Russian corporate bonds.

            I recall how GE closed Kidder-Peabody when the latter lost $400 million in 1993-94. Nowadays AIG loses what? a $100 billion? And it’s still afloat, thanks to you, me an dother taxpayers.

            What do __you__ do? I have a sinking suspicion that we may know each other.

            > Usually you don’t remember what’s
            > going on in your own paper in just a
            > month or two after a submission.

            Not I. I have a fairly good short-term memory and forget the contents of my own papers much later: a month or two after submitting the final draft to the journal. :-)

            • Oops again. Looks like that’s exactly what you said to begin with: “after a submission”. For some reason I mistook it to mean “initial submission”. I need to get some zzzs soon.

      • I have a question of my own: what is the most common objection to the Hull-White model, Boba?

    • Felix, did you ever get over Karina Shluger’s rejection of your affections towards her? You still seem like a very bitter man.

  24. boba, I hate to say that, but in the age of Google, I just put martingale stock price and the very first result gave me the answer:

    the martingale representation theorem says that in equilibrium prices represented as the present discounted value of future payoffs from the asset must satisfy a martingale under a given measure q.

    I have no idea what it means, but it seems that the answer is d)
    So, Товарищ Бендер may be chess champion, or may be “it’s time to run away”. I’ll go with потомок янычар!

    • > have no idea what it means,
      > but it seems that the answer is d)

      The answer thast Boba expects is (b), although (d) is also probably a martingale.

    • Felix,

      Do you know why Остап Бендер claimed that his father was a Turkish subject? I bet not.

    • After all, google is not that powerful. The answer is b) AND c).

      Товарищ Бендер is a bit rusty, but it’s not surprising. Usually you don’t remember what’s going on in your own paper in just a month or two after a submission.

  25. Oops, check that. Being a specialist in fixed income, my memory about equity failed me for a second. It is indeed the **discounted** stock price that forms the martingale, as the conditional expectation for undiscounted spot price is positive due to the risk-free interest rate. Sorry.

  26. > And, if only “a moron” couldn’t see
    > the collapse of US real estate why
    > them did China and every country on
    > the planet keep buying US
    > Treasuries and USD’s then?

    They were real morons too. I liquidated all my real estate and equity holdings back in 2005.

    These morons will lose their shirts very soon, when the US Treasury is going to print tons of new money to cover the budget and debt deficit, causing run-away inflation as soon as the US economy stops dropping, which will make those Chinese-owned longer-term lost much of their value.

    The problem the Chinese have is that their holdings of US debt are totally illegquid, because as soon as they start selling them, there will be no buyers at reasonable prices; thus the entire T-market will collapse. So, the Chinese are stuck. And I hear, Russia too has large holding in US debt, cash and equity. Poor slobs: they got punished for their trust in the US economy.

  27. …. which will make those Chinese-owned cash and bonds lose much of their value.

  28. Sorry for all these typos: I want to finish as quickly as possible, which makes me to mis-type constantly. Plus, I am too tired to look over my text before posting. Sorry.

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