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Hussman: Wall Street Becoming a 'Glorified Crack House'

Tuesday, 06 Dec 2011 08:42 AM

Economist and fund manager John Hussman says that Wall Street is "becoming little more than a glorified crack house."

"Day after day, the sole focus of Wall Street is on more sugar, stronger sugar, Big Bazookas of sugar, unlimited sugar, and anything that will get somebody to deliver the sugar faster," Hussman writes in a note to investors.

"This is like offering a lollipop to quiet down a 2-year old throwing a tantrum, and expecting that the result will be fewer tantrums."

The past decade is nothing but the gradual destruction of the ability of the financial markets to allocate capital for the benefit of future growth, Hussman says.

"By preventing the natural discipline of the markets to impose losses on poor stewards of capital, and to impose interest rates high enough to force debtors to allocate the capital usefully, the world's policy makers are increasingly wrecking the prospects for long-term economic growth," he says.

"Nietzsche famously said 'What does not kill me makes me stronger,'" Hussman notes. "The corollary is 'What constantly rescues me makes me weaker.’”

"The world will only stop looking for bailouts when policy makers stop handing them out."

The Wall Street Journal reports that European policymakers French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel say they favor a wholesale change to European Union treaties to enshrine fiscal discipline and restore investor confidence in the eurozone, but are open to an agreement just among the 17 nations of the currency bloc.

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