Friday, March 26, 2010

The Mike Tyson of fiscal restraint

"From my own experience I have seen Chinese SOE's put together the most uneconomic deals imaginable in their voracious acquisition of external natural resources. I appreciate that this sounds odd and perhaps apocryphal, but it is standard for an SOE to commit to a billion dollar enterprise without doing a feasibility study. Chinese also have this odd belief that capital gains will always grow faster than underlying value (rent), in other words, there will always be a greater fool. Japanese thought the same thing until 1990. No matter how much one has in 'reserves', idiocy can eat up a seemingly inexhaustible pile of money in a flash. I look at China as the Mike Tyson of fiscal restraint, and expect a similar end. Empty cities, empty apartment blocks, paying a massive premium for commodity extraction, and this year's switch from a cash-paying to a debt-accumulating general population all suggest an unsightly end to this bubble."
(Dec. 11, 2009, Zero Hedge)

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