Top 7 Market Villains of 2010

Since the big crash of 2008 markets are recovering, but there are some people that with their politics and what they say (or said..), instead of helping the markets are keeping them from going up faster…

7. William Dudley

Market Villains - William Dudley

The New York Fed President is responsible for buying that $600 billion in Treasury bonds by the middle of next year. Those Treasury bonds will be bought with taxpayer money from Dudley’s former employer, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE: GS).

Aside from the potential conflict of interest here, what really makes Dudley a villain is his recent statement that the dollar’s value wasn’t a major consideration when the central bank decided to implement QE2.

“We’re not trying to push the dollar to any particular level,” Dudley told CNBC.

Presumably, the dollar’s decline isn’t at all related to the horde of additional money being printed by the Fed via QE2. Sorry, we’re not buying it, Mr. Dudley.

6. Mark Hurd

Market Villains - Mark Hurd

The former Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HPQ) CEO resigned in August after it was discovered that he had a personal relationship with a contractor who received inappropriate payments from HP.

News of the scandal sunk shares of the world’s biggest maker of personal computers and printers, and millions of dollars in shareholder wealth was destroyed. One investor even sued the former CEO and the board of directors, claiming disclosures surrounding his resignation led to a drop in the shares.

5. Tony Hayward

Market Villains - Tony Hayward

The BP plc (NYSE: BP) executive’s languid response to the gigantic Gulf oil spill ticked off not only the victim’s of the busted well, but practically the entire sane world.

The grossly insensitive comment, “I’d like my life back,” along with that ride on his 52-foot racing yacht “Bob” — all while millions of gallons of crude oil flowed virtually unabated into the Gulf of Mexico — were two of the worst public relations nightmares in corporate history.

4. Transportation Safety Administration

Market Villains - TSA

Rather than gaining a reputation for keeping the airways safe, the TSA now has become best known for groping passengers and for using a “porn scan” to harass travelers at our nation’s airports.

Much of the flying public is very disturbed about what they see as a blatant overreach and invasion of privacy by this government agency, and if left unaltered, the TSA’s current policies could represent a choke-point in the nation’s mobility.

3. Barack Obama

Market Villains - Barack Obama

When it comes to implementing a less-than free-market agenda, the president certainly carries the torch. The increased role of government in the health care system, and the financial industry via FinReg legislation; the lack of clarity on the future of the Bush tax cuts; his lack of any advisers with actual business experience; and his anti-business rhetoric puts President Obama near the top of our 2010 villain’s list. To give you a sense of that anti-business rhetoric, consider this line from the president’s speech on exports given this summer:

“In the absence of sound oversight … responsible businesses are forced to compete against unscrupulous and underhanded businesses, who are unencumbered by any restrictions on activities that might harm the environment, or take advantage of middle-class families, or threaten to bring down the entire financial system.”

This revealing statement essentially demonizes business as out to prey on the middle class and the environment — and that’s exactly the attitude financial markets don’t need in a U.S. president.

 2. John Maynard Keynes

Market Villains - John Maynard Keynes

How can a long-dead economist be near the top of the 2010 villains list?

Simple, his ideas currently supply the intellectual fodder for big government spending, and for the failed attempts to “stimulate” the U.S. economy. Because Keynes thought that private sector decisions can lead to inefficient macroeconomic outcomes, he argued that it’s the proper role of government to step in and provide a fix. This fix includes massive intervention in the economy, more spending, tax rate manipulation and an increased role of the central bank to manipulate monetary policy.

And Keynes’ arguments and influence indirectly lead us to our top villain of 2010 …

1. Ben Bernanke

Ben Bernanke

The Federal Reserve Chairman’s move to inject another $600 billion into the financial system via the practice of buying Treasures, aka. QE2, put him square in the cross-hairs of a skeptical public. In fact, Mr. Bernanke has become the de facto stereotype of a wonkish policymaker trying to push just the right levers that will bring an anemic economy back to life.

Mr. Bernanke once gave a speech where he made the following statement: “The U.S. government has a technology called a printing press that allows it to produce as many U.S. dollars as it wishes at essentially no cost.” He followed up this statement by saying, “A determined government can always generate higher spending and hence positive inflation.”

Perhaps the last thing the American public wants right now, while the economy still struggles and while unemployment is nearly 10%, is “positive inflation.” The Fed’s hitherto unsuccessful attempts to extricate the economy out of the doldrums highlight just how much government is actually a hindrance to economic progress, and it’s this growing realization that makes Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke the biggest market villain of 2010.

Source: investorplace


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