The total outstanding debt in the world is approaching record levels. Most are preparing for inflation thinking that central banks will be printing money to pay the debt. What if someone told you inflation is not the immediate danger, but deflation is? Why? Because our money supply is not printed money. It is debt. When debt deflates, it is money supply that deflates. Most of the world’s debt is denominated in US dollars. Creditors are asking for US dollars to be paid back. Not gold, not stocks, not houses. This creates demand for US dollars. This is why when there is a debt crisis, US dollar goes up. US dollar has already lost it’s value due to excessive borrowing for decades. Now it is time to move up. Here is an article about the excessive debt burden of many developed countries.
By Elliott Wave International
The biggest balloon in the world is deflating.
This balloon had been inflated with a quadrillion (1015) dollars, which is to say: This balloon was filled not with air but with debt from around the globe.
What will happen as this global debt winds down? In two words: Deflationary Depression — the likes of which could be unprecedented in history. Want to Learn
A thousand trillion in debt can’t be wished away or swept under the rug. No one can “forgive” the debt. The consequences of unwinding this debt could be as massive as the dollar figure itself.
We’ve heard plenty about the debt problems of Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy.
But how about the world’s second largest economy? Consider this fact reported in the Japan Times (July 8):
“Japan’s government debts are the highest the world has ever seen, at 219 percent of gross domestic product, according to the International Monetary Fund.”
Then there’s the world’s sixth largest national economy. In January 2009, Robert Prechter wrote this in the Elliott Wave Theorist:
“British banks have amassed $4.4 trillion worth of foreign liabilities, twice Britain’s annual GDP. … England, moreover, ‘has not defaulted since the Middle Ages.’ The possibility that it may do so again is yet another indication that the bear market is of … (larger) degree, exactly as Elliott wave analysts have predicted all along.”
Remember, Japan and Great Britain are major world economies. Imagine what the debt totals would look like in a line-item analysis of other nations, regions, states, provinces and municipalities around the world, including the U.S.
De-leveraging will likely lead to a deflationary crash — a “day of reckoning.”
How can you prepare for a deflationary crash?
To start with, keep your money safe. As Bob Prechter mentions in his June 2010 Elliott Wave Theorist:
“Investors should be primarily in greenback cash and Treasury bills.”
He also describes holdings which should be strictly avoided.