American Monetary Association

Jason talks with financial expert Logan Mohtashami regarding the massive student loan debt problem and how students can make smarter decisions. They also discuss where the economy is going.

Logan Mohtashami is a senior loan manager at his family-run mortgage company, AMC Lending Group, which has been providing mortgage services for California residents since 1987. He has been an active trader in the stock market since 1996.  His other passion is our political system in this country.  Logan is also a financial columnist for Benzinga.com and his goal in his blog is to do what he can to provide readers with real time truthful information on the housing sector and finance.

Direct download: ama-59-LoganMohtashami.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 5:00pm EST

Jason Hartman is joined by author, Scott Patterson to discuss high frequency trading, of which roughly 70 percent is driven by computers. Scott says the firms using artificial intelligence for high-speed trading make it nearly impossible for the little guy to compete in the markets. According to his book, Dark Pools, these robot systems trade in milliseconds. High frequency firms flood the market with buy and sell orders, effectively clogging up the system and posing a threat to other firms. For more details, listen at: www.JasonHartman.com. While this electronic exchange made the system more effective, one has to wonder if this trading style hasn’t become detrimental to the markets overall when trading successfully is defined by milliseconds. Scott coined the term “A.I. Bandits” to describe electronic high frequency trading. Scott also discusses the history of quant strategies based on his book, The Quants, a mathematical scientific approach to outsmarting Wall Street, which led to the recent financial crash. He calls the quant system “a classic tale of hubris.”

Scott Patterson is author of The Quants and his new release, Dark Pools, and is currently a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, where he covers financial regulation from Washington, D.C. He has also written for the New York Times, Rolling Stone and Mother Earth News. He has a Masters of Arts degree from James Madison University. He lives in Alexandria, Virginia.

Direct download: AMA58-ScottPatterson.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

Jason Hartman interviews Keith Fitz-Gerald, the Chairman of The Fitz-Gerald Group and Chief Investment Strategist at Money Map Press. More at: http://www.jasonhartman.com. A bestselling financial author, Keith's investment perspective is a daily feature for more than 500,000 Money Morning subscribers in 35 countries. A frequent commentator for financial news outlets including Fox Business, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, Cavuto, Varney & Company, BNN, MarketWatch, and others, Keith Fitz-Gerald is among an elite handful of world-recognized experts on global investing.

Keith tours constantly on the financial lecture circuit alongside other legendary investor analysts including Jim Rogers, Steve Forbes, and Dr. Mark Faber and was lauded as a "Business Visionary" on the recent Forbes.com list. His engaging style and remarkable predictive record resonates with his audiences in North America, Europe, and Asia; investors and business leaders eager for Keith's insights into how colossal global economic, social, and political trends are disrupting the paradigms of the last 50 years to create the most extraordinary investment opportunities of our lifetimes. The investment community praised Keith's recent book Fiscal Hangover (Wiley) as "Essential reading for every serious investor" and "A brilliant, spirited explanation of the origins of the current mess and more importantly how you can cleverly turn the chaos to your advantage.". His upcoming book Tomorrow (Sutton Hart 2012) spotlights today's global trends and offers a roadmap for business leaders and investors to profitably navigate the turbulent waters of unprecedented global change.

Direct download: AMA57-KeithFitzgerald.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

Jason Hartman is joined by contributing author for GoldMoney.com, Alasdair MacLeod for a rousing discussion of the decline of the European economy, the mistakes of the European Central Bank and EU, and how “governments are eating their own children.” Alasdair makes a rather accurate comparison between the fall of Rome and the current economic disaster around the world, calling it the Nero influence. Governments continue to spend money and introduce new taxes that are detrimental to the people they serve. The ECB is now lowering collateral standards as they run out of quality collateral, such as taking on mortgage-backed securities, in exchange for helping banks and governments. For more details, listen at: www.JasonHartman.com. Alasdair said the real problem among Greece, Spain, Italy and other countries in crisis is that they are broke, yet they continue to meet to discuss increasing spending to build infrastructure and creating token taxes. Governments the world round are in a debt trap, including the U.S. Alasdair feels there is only one way to defer the imminent fall and that is for the Central Banks to come together and put into play quantitative easing. Governments would then need to seriously cut their excessive, wasteful spending.

Direct download: AMA56-AlasdairMacleod.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

Jason Hartman hosts an interesting interview with Professor Laurence Kotlikoff, author of The Clash of Generations: Saving Ourselves, Our Kids, Our Economy, regarding the problems with the economy and the effect that the astronomical national debt and government spending will have on generations to come. Listen at: www.JasonHartman.com. Professor Kotlikoff paints a picture of the magnitude of these issues very clearly, explaining that the fiscal gap is $211 trillion. He explains that we would have to raise every federal tax immediately and permanently by 64 percent or cut all non-interest spending by the government (Medicare, Social Security, defense spending, etc) by 40 percent. “The country is broke, totally broke,” says Professor Kotlikoff. He emphasizes that this applies to today, not 75 years down the road. Jason and Professor Kotlikoff also discuss why the 2007 quadrupled money base through money printing hasn’t hit the streets yet in the form of hyperinflation. Essentially, banks are being bribed to hold money reserves by the Fed. In simplistic terms, the Federal Reserve prints the money, lends it out at very low interest rates to the banks, and then the banks deposit it back with the Federal Reserve and get a higher interest rate. This makes banks more solvent over time without the public ever knowing what is going on. Professor Kotlikoff also talks about a proposal to fix the financial system, which he refers to as a fragile system, presently a “trust me” banking system where the public is unaware of what the banks are doing with their money.
Laurence J. Kotlikoff is a William Fairfield Warren Professor at Boston University, a Professor of Economics at Boston University, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the Econometric Society, a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, President of Economic Security Planning, Inc., a company specializing in financial planning software, a frequent columnist for Bloomberg and Forbes, and a blogger for The Economist and The Huffington Post. Professor Kotlikoff received his B.A. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1973 and his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 1977. From 1977 through 1983 he served on the faculties of economics of the University of California, Los Angeles and Yale University. In 1981-82 Professor Kotlikoff was a Senior Economist with the President's Council of Economic Advisers.
Professor Kotlikoff is author or co-author of15 books and hundreds of professional journal articles. His most recent books are The Clash of Generations (co-authored with Scott Burns, MIT Press), Jimmy Stewart Is Dead (John Wiley & Sons), Spend ‘Til the End, (co-authored with Scott Burns, Simon & Schuster), The Healthcare Fix (MIT Press), and The Coming Generational Storm (co-authored with Scott Burns, MIT Press).
Professor Kotlikoff publishes extensively in newspapers, and magazines on issues of financial reform, personal finance, taxes, Social Security, healthcare, deficits, generational accounting, pensions, saving, and insurance. Professor Kotlikoff has served as a consultant to the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Harvard Institute for International Development, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Swedish Ministry of Finance, the Norwegian Ministry of Finance, the Bank of Italy, the Bank of Japan, the Bank of England, the Government of Russia, the Government of Ukraine, the Government of Bolivia, the Government of Bulgaria, the Treasury of New Zealand, the Office of Management and Budget, the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Labor, the Joint Committee on Taxation, The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, The American Council of Life Insurance, Merrill Lynch, Fidelity Investments, AT&T, AON Corp., and other major U.S. corporations. He has provided expert testimony on numerous occasions to committees of Congress including the Senate Finance Committee, the House Ways and Means Committee, and the Joint Economic Committee.

Direct download: AMA55-LaurenceKotlikoff.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

Jason Hartman and returning guest, Dan Amerman discuss federal policies and interest rates, which hurts the savers and fixed income folks. The artificially low interest rates are not working and create higher prices through inflation. Listen at:www.JasonHartman.com.  They also discuss inflation rates, in which the federal numbers are glossed over and do not match true inflation as experienced by the American citizens through food, fuel, and utilities. Manufacturers hide inflation by making products smaller. Jason and Dan then talk about rental housing and how to arbitrage the inflation. Dan explains how to turn the fed policies around to our advantage. It starts with understanding cash flow investing and setting your safety margin. When looking at cash flows, rather than being all about the price, it’s more about the interest rate when it comes to a mortgage. In the process of creating non-free-market interest rates for banks and for the federal government, the federal government has accidentally made available subsidized mortgage rates that are available if you can get the lending. It goes directly to your bottom line as the investor, resulting in much higher cash flows than you would see in a free market.
Dan and Jason illustrate how the sharp decline in housing costs and the interest rate levels causes the floor to drop out and provides an unprecedented opportunity to obtain mortgages and have inflation pay them off.  While rates have been dropping, rents have been going up, thus making real estate investing even more profitable and sensible.
Daniel R. Amerman is a Chartered Financial Analyst with MBA and BSBA degrees in finance.  He is a financial author and speaker with over 25 years of professional experience.   Years of studying the costs of paying for over $100 trillion of US government retirement promises, as well as the costs of cashing out an expected $44 trillion of Boomer pensions and retirement accounts, have convinced him that too many promises and too much paper wealth chasing too few real resources will likely lead to substantial inflation in the years ahead, with potentially devastating implications for many savers and investors, a problem that will also apply to many other nations.
Mr. Amerman spent much of the 1980s as an investment banker helping Savings & Loans and others try to survive the effects of the last major bout of inflation in the United States.  There is a basic economics principle that much of the public is unaware of – inflation doesn't directly destroy the real wealth of goods and services, but rather, redistributes the rights to that real wealth (a principle which unfortunately will likely destroy much of the investment wealth the Boomers plan on enjoying in retirement).  The author worked with the effects of billions of dollars of such wealth redistributions, and saw how there was not only a loser for each dollar of wealth redistributed – but a winner.

Direct download: AMA54-DanAmerman2.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

We are all confused about economic indicators and it’s critical that we understand the real figures, the direction of the economy, interest rates and their consequences, and much more. On this episode, Jason Hartman interviews Bernie Baumohl, author of Secrets of Economic Indicators, in regard to the numerous economic indicators and what is most useful. Bernie explains what a “business cycle” is and what happens during the cycle, how it comes full circle over time. For more details, listen at: www.JasonHartman.com. Bernie gives examples of stress points in the business cycle. People make mistakes, such as buying more inventory than they need or the economy can’t handle the demand of the people. More recently, we have seen longer periods of economic growth, but at a closer look, the mistakes that caused the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression are apparent. It was a “cauldron of fraud and wrecklessness,” says Bernie. Jason and Bernie touch on the subject of the Federal Reserve and the Gold Standard, citing what has been happening in Greece as an example of the limitations of a currency that is fixed and unmovable. Bernie feels that a country in economic trouble needs to have the flexibility to lower interest rates. They also discuss market sensitivity, the index, and the source of the leading market indicators.

Bernard Baumohl is chief global economist at The Economic Outlook Group. He is well known for being ahead of the curve in assessing the direction of the U.S. and world economy. Mr. Baumohl began his career as an analyst with the Council on Foreign Relations, a think tank specializing on international affairs. He later served as an economist at European American Bank with responsibilities to monitor the global economy and develop forecasts. Mr. Baumohl was also an award-winning reporter with TIME magazine who covered the White House, Federal Reserve and Wall Street. Apart from his role as chief global economist, Mr. Baumohl also teaches at the New York Institute of Finance and is a regular commentator on Public Television's Nightly Business Report. A sought after international speaker, Mr. Baumohl has been recognized for his forecasting accuracy. He has lectured at New York University and Duke University, and is often cited in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, New York Times, Business Week, Barron's, and the Financial Times.

Mr. Baumohl is author of The Secrets of Economic Indicators: Hidden Clues to Future Economic Trends and Investment Opportunities (Wharton School Publishing, 2nd edition). The best-selling book is winner of the Readers Preference Editor's Choice Award for Finance and has been translated into several languages, including Russian and Chinese.  He is also a recipient of the John Hancock Award for Excellence in Financial Journalism, and is a member of the National Association for Business Economics and the American Economic Association. Mr. Baumohl holds an M.A. from Columbia University.

Direct download: AMA53-BernieBaumohl.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:00am EST

Jason Hartman is joined on this episode by Greg Farrell, author of Crash of the Titans: Greed, Hubris, The Fall of Merrill Lynch, and the Near Collapse of Bank of America, for a discussion of the economic crash and the resulting bailouts, as well as some of the inside dealings with some of the major banks, such as the buyouts by Bank of America. Greg explains how these banks that participated in the buyouts grossly underestimated the depth of problems in their own banks and in those they acquired. Listen at:www.JasonHartman.com. Greg relates his research on Merrill Lynch’s attempt in the 1980s to become more like Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street banks, which was to their detriment because they lacked the expertise for such business practices, and became involved in and in the middle of many of the scandals of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. Like CitiGroup, they were in over their head. Jason and Greg discuss Wall Street in general and then specific financial groups regarding the recklessness and risky businesses, funds, etc, that they entertained to give the impression of higher rates of returns. As the plot unfolded, large bonuses to CEOs and high-producing brokers came into play, which encouraged an all or nothing attitude toward the company and fostered a “me” attitude versus long-term stability of the company. Greg also talks about what he calls the “Charlotte Mafia,” the clash of company cultures.

Greg Farrell is a correspondent for the Financial Times. In January 2009, he broke the news that Merrill Lynch had paid out its 2008 bonuses a month ahead of schedule, in December, even though Merrill was in the process of losing $28 billion for the year, and Bank of America needed an extra $20 billion in taxpayer funds to complete its acquisition of the firm. That story sparked an investigation by New York attorney general Andrew Cuomo. Greg is a past winner of the American Business Press’s Jesse Neal Award for investigative reporting and a recipient of the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship for business journalism. He earned a BA from Harvard University and an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Columbia University.

Direct download: AMA52-GregFarrell.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

Jason Hartman interviews returning guest and founder and CEO, Harry Dent, Jr., of HS Dent, an economic think tank and research company, about the next coming crash. For more details, listen at:  www.JasonHartman.com. Mr. Dent accurately predicted the boom of the 1990s, which was contrary to what many other forecasters predicted. He explains why America is on a path to the next Great Depression through its mounting debt to boost the economy. He talks about how the U.S. creates bubble after bubble in all areas, such as the housing bubble, the gold and silver bubble, the commodity bubble, etc. Trillions of dollars in stimulus money has poured forth from the government, along with the lowering of interest rates, thereby inciting inflation that will continue to grow with the current system of bailouts and lack of lending. He also discusses the peaks and deflation of spending with the switch between the Baby Boomer and current generations, and how this will affect America's economic future. Mr. Dent also paints the dark picture of China’s future, where they are overbuilding just to keep their workers employed, which will become a worldwide crisis when their building bubble bursts. Jason and Mr. Dent talk about the condition of other countries and how everything interplays to lead to the next crash that Mr. Dent forecasts. He suggests some strategies for investors and what people might expect.

Using exciting new research developed from years of hands-on business experience, Harry S. Dent, Jr. offers a refreshingly positive and understandable view of the economic future. As a bestselling author on economics, Mr. Dent is the developer of The Dent Method - an economic forecasting approach based on changes in demographic trends. In all of his past books since 1989, Dent saw an end to the Baby Boom spending cycle around the end of this decade. In his book, The Great Depression Ahead, (Free Press, 2009), Harry Dent outlined how this next great downturn is likely to unfold in three stages, with an interim boom stage between 2012 and 2017 before the long-term slowdown finally turns into the next global boom in the early 2020s. He continued to educate audiences about his predictions for the next and possibly last great bull market, from late 2005 into early to mid 2010. Since 1992 he has authored two consecutive best sellers, The Roaring 2000s and The Roaring 2000s Investor (Simon and Schuster). In his latest book, The Next Great Bubble Boom, he offers a comprehensive forecast for the next two decades and explains how fundamental trends suggest strong growth ahead, followed by a longer-term economic contraction. Mr. Dent also publishes the HS Dent Forecast newsletter, which offers current analysis of economic and financial market trends.

Direct download: AMA51-HarryDent.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST

oin Jason Hartman as he and author of "Quirk", Hannah Holmes explore human personality types and how they affect who we become, whether extroverted,
conscientious, agreeable, or even neurotic or obnoxious. Is it possible that our hard-wired brain chemistry can even determine our political opinions and economic views? Learn more about the Five Factors in personality and about Hannah's research atwww.JasonHartman.com. Research has shown that mice have personalities, and somewhere out there, perhaps in your own basement, is a mouse just like you. Hannah Holmes has led an adventurous life since graduating from the University of Southern Maine. She was an editor at the New York-based Garbage Magazine in the late 1980s, after which she returned to Maine to start a freelance writing career. She was a contributor in a variety of magazines.

In the late 1990s, Hannah was recruited by the Discovery Channel Online for an experiment called live internet reporting. This grand experiment led her to distant and uncomfortable parts of the world, from hunting dinosaurs in Mongolia's Gobi desert, to the Montserrat Volcano Observatory, where fine volcanic ash ruined her computer and left her hair like a ball of jute twine. She also piloted the Alvin submarine around "black smokers" a mile and a half under the ocean. It was a glorious era until Discovery.com's plug was pulled. Hannah then went on to author several books, "The Secret Life of Dust," "Suburban Safari: A Year on the Lawn," and her recent book, "Quirk," about the many fascinating personality types. Hannah's blog can be found at www.HannahHolmes.net.

Direct download: AMA50-HannahHolmes.mp3
Category:Audio Podcast -- posted at: 10:00am EST