Pragmatic Capitalism

Practical Views on Money & Finance

Author Archive

Should Money Earn Interest? (Very Nerdy)

This post will involve some math and will require some prior understanding of sectoral balances/stock flow consistent accounting. It would be best read with a stiff drink, but the post alone could act as a sedative. Read at your own risk and do not operate heavy machinery while reading this. Ben Carlson has a thought… Read More

The USA is Not Turning into Greece

I was flipping through TV this evening when I came across this image projecting that the USA was on course to become Greece: Aside from the spurious 30 year trend line, this appears like an alluring story. Greece is a country. The USA is a country. If Greece can default because of high debt then couldn’t… Read More

Embracing the Why

Josh Brown cites a Ben Carlson piece this morning arguing that there’s no point in understanding why certain things happen in the financial markets. Basically, the world is really complex, too complex to predict so you shouldn’t bother trying. This has become a very popular refrain in the last few years and I honestly don’t… Read More

Greece: What’s Next?

More Greece today [deep sigh].   I’m getting a lot of emails on Greece in the last few days so here are some brief thoughts on where things are likely headed and how some of this might play out. Of course, there is a huge amount of uncertainty involved in all of this, but here’s… Read More

When Does Greece Actually get Scary?

More Greek headlines over the weekend. Sigh. And it’s leading to a repeat of a repeat of a repeat in the financial markets: This is after negotiations on a new bailout package failed over the weekend and the ECB closed lending lines to Greek banks. In response, the Greek government implemented capital controls and is… Read More


There was a time when Greece and the EMU used to really interest me. In the early stages of the Euro crisis there was a lot of confusion about what was going on and why the EMU is such a mess. Given my operational understandings of the monetary system I had something relevant to contribute.… Read More

Where Does Money Come From?

“The process by which money is created is so simple the mind is repelled.” – JK Galbraith There’s a reason why myth # 1 in my “biggest myths in economics” is “the government prints money”. It is, by far, the most pernicious and misleading of the economic myths that exists. I was reminded of this today… Read More