My new book:

“The testament of a disabused economist”

Our duty is to rebuild society on a solid basis, as well as making deep reforms to financial markets and getting rid once and for all of their intrinsic ability to cause harm. We haven’t learned anything from 2008 and have even worsened our exposure, and exacerbated our risks, so much so that this extreme vulnerability is now infecting even the most well-off. I dare to be the spokesman of an overwhelming majority of “ordinary” citizens by affirming that we will accept suffering this acute and unprecedented crisis (once again!) on the sole condition that our system’s structural and substantive vices are immediately put right.  May the statesmen and women who have enough moral fibre to reject the economy and finance continuing to reign as supreme leaders, while society is bound to follow them with servility, come out of the shadows. The economic catastrophe that is lying in unavoidable wait for us is asking the right questions, and is making its demands for a deep cleansing. May this virus be thanked for it, and win the Nobel prize for economics, if it causes us all to mobilise.

English Articles
Make the plane greener ?
Make the plane greener ?January 30, 2023  The loyalty programs of aviation companies (frequent flyer program) are 40 years old. They were first created in 1979 by the now defunct Texas International Airlines. Eager to give impetus to its stagnant clientele and to give luster to its brand, the solution advocated – and followed little by little by others – was to ensure the loyalty of its customers by offering them a credit on flights. future. By purchasing their ticket, passengers would earn miles proportional to their number of flights with this same company which would allow them to be exchanged later for a free flight or an upgrade.   The find turned out to be extraordinarily juicy for frequent travelers who were highly courted by the various companies and for good reason! Imperial College London recently calculated that with 42 million annual flights, passengers on planes circle the Earth 4 billion times a year. A lucrative operation, therefore, for both passengers and aviation companies.   At a time when air flights (at least on short journeys) are stigmatized, why not simply abolish these loyalty programs so as not to encourage – or even push – users to take the plane more often than they want or need? Wouldn’t it be both more logical and healthier to curb this excessive consumption of planes in this way (about 10% more flights entirely due to these loyalty cards) by not openly encouraging passengers through these free miles? It would be much more decent for the planet and for all those who never or rarely fly to completely abolish these programs, because maintaining them amounts to remunerating people when they contribute to further degrading our environment.   Doesn’t a Paris-New York return trip consume as much CO2 as an entire year of heating for the average European? A fact, a figure that demonstrates our inequality in the face of air travel: in Europe, 20% of passengers take around 75% of the available flights.   But it’s not just the free flights obtained through these programs that pose a problem, because upgrades to Business or First class are just as harmful given their obviously much larger carbon footprint than that of a passenger in Economy in view of the much larger space occupied. The International Council on Clean Transportation consortium has calculated that a Business passenger consumes two to three more carbon depending on the aircraft than an Economy passenger.   It is therefore a veritable ecological carnage hanging over us because no less than 30 billion unused miles are currently credited to the loyalty cards of all companies, according to a McKinsey analysis. Enough to offer a ticket to almost all of the 4.5 billion passengers who fly annually.   Why not take inspiration from the recommendations of the International Council on Clean Transportation and – rather than prevent those who wish to fly – create a program which would be the exact opposite and which would penalize the very frequent flyers? A kind of progressive tax which would be levied on those who fly often and which would inevitably have the effect of reducing emissions from aircraft while better distributing flights. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
The EV, symbol of a shift in world power?
The EV, symbol of a shift in world power?January 16, 2023  Sales of electric cars are exploding on a global scale. Last year saw an increase of 60% compared to 2021 with nearly 11 million vehicles put into circulation. It’s simple: EV now account for 13.2% of all global sales, having thus tripled in 2 years since 2020. Germany, Great Britain, France and China are the most important users.       Obviously, this phenomenon will have universal repercussions and will have crucial effects both on the environment of course, and on the economic and geopolitical levels. In 2022 alone, these electric and hybrid vehicles will have reduced oil consumption by around 4% overall. It must be recognized that the electric car of today is becoming much more efficient since its average range is 425 KM, knowing that this progression will continue again this year which promises them a range of 580 KM.   The other fundamental event considerably reinforcing the attractiveness of the EV was the collapse of more than 85% (since 2010) of the cost of the battery because it still constitutes a third of the overall price of this type of vehicle. The hyperbolic increase in demand logically made it possible to increase battery production by 40% in 2022, which should even be multiplied by 5 by 2025. Make no mistake as this constantly increasing demand of batteries for EV represents one of the most notorious industrial challenges of our contemporary history.   Supply chains, international competition between industrial heavyweights, the balance of business, interstate political relations, in short, a new sharing of power, will result from this because – at present – 5 out of 10 batteries produced at the level worldwide are “Made in China”.       Thanks to giants such as CATL and BYD and to a national market where now 1 out of 4 vehicles sold is electric with 6 million sales in 2022 – double that of 2021 – the Chinese market is twice as large as Europe and 5 times more than the United States.         This strength of its domestic market and its considerable lead in terms of battery manufacturing has thus authorized China to export 165% more vehicles abroad in November 2022 compared to November 2021. Chinese manufacturers are therefore competitors of size at the global level and a company like BYD is generating a real revolution by positioning itself directly against Tesla, which it is giving a hard time to.       Europe itself, which has automotive pioneers and flagships, currently buys around 19% of its electric cars from China and this is only the start, as major Chinese manufacturers are betting on an upcoming escalation of around 50% of their exports. For example, BYD recently announced the launch of three models exclusively for Europe.   This revolution of electric cars announces a redistribution of the cards, and very probably new conquerors. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
The financial crisis will not happen
The financial crisis will not happenJanuary 5, 2023  This phenomenon occurs quite rarely, always in the event of liquidity crises, i.e. in times of great financial stress such as in 2008 or at the start of the Covid crisis. It translates into a gluttonous appetite for the US dollar sought after by the entire planet because it is sorely lacking. It is of course the most fragile who toast first, like what is happening at the very beginning of the year in Egypt where almost a single dollar no longer circulates. It must be said that 2,200 billion of these dollars have been withdrawn from the markets, and therefore from State treasuries, corporate and private accounts over the past 20 months by the US Federal Reserve, having made the fight against inflation its top priority. As it is the only one able to issue this coveted greenback, the whole world is trying to borrow it.   In reality, it is a two-speed American central bank – somewhat schizophrenic – that the experts see emerging before their eyes thanks to the repetitive crises. This unavowable dichotomy could only come to light thanks to the very energetic rise in its interest rates in recent months. Indeed, while it stiffens its monetary policy in order to break growth by slowing consumption. At the same time and in parallel, it continues its mission as a major provider of liquidity in order to contain volatility on the sacrosanct financial markets. Let us remember the trillions poured into the system during the panic due to the credit crisis of 2008 or the Covid crisis in March 2020: they had the immediate consequence of lowering the routs in the making by more than a notch and considerably reduce hysteria.   There is therefore an indisputable contradiction between a monetary policy which, on the one hand, is becoming tougher in a life-and-death fight against inflation, and on the other hand, an unlimited generosity which seeks to cushion the shocks to businesses and banks. Yes, the Fed is well aware of the extreme complexity that financial products have become today, some of which are decked out with the dreamy name of “exotics”, likely on a moonless night to initially contaminate the all the cogs before making them implode, in the absence of its vital liquidity. It therefore has no choice but by this headlong rush which allows (for the moment) the quadrillion of derivatives to continue to be exchanged. From a traditional central bank whose mission is to fight against inflation – which it does by vigorously raising its rates, which has the effect of slowing down the real economy – the American Federal Reserve now also plays the crucial role of firefighter towards the virtual economy: that of a great peacemaker, by neutralizing any hint of volatility of which the markets have a holy horror.   This second attribution of the one that remains the most powerful central bank by the grace of the imperium of its universal arbiter currency now clearly takes precedence over the first (fight against inflationary pressures). So much so that the younger generations of analysts – having not lived through the inflationary outbreaks of the 70s and 80s – are now convinced that these massive injections of liquidity into the system aimed at refinancing it eternally constitute the normal and conventional mission of a central bank. Liquidity at all costs has therefore now become the hard drug of the market, companies and even households, which were all in the front row to benefit from it during the Covid crisis.   From the Fed through the Bank of Japan and up to the ECB, the intertwining of our central banks in the financial system is now intense, inbred. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...