© 2019 by Henry Thornton. 

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March 28, 2020

USA-China relationship far more hostile.

USA allies (including Australia) less trusted by China, less trade.

Vast government spending everywhere.  Unless Jonson plan (See last week's blog) is adopted, counties will have massive, unmanageable debt burdens.

USA will adopt a...

March 27, 2020


Firstly, I am sharing a piece of propaganda  sent to me by a girlfriend in Dubai that is currently doing the rounds in the Middle East.  It adheres to sound medical advice but I think it will make you smile … or get angry, considering the lack of internation...

March 22, 2020


William Gibson

As we all feel like characters in a surreal landscape at present – and I do wish someone would tell me what my character should be feeling – I’m reviewing the latest William Gibson novel ‘Agency’. Our present reality is threatened by forces and beha...

March 21, 2020

The Morrison government is rightly concerned about the cost of saving the Australian economy.  When asked if he would be going to save companies that were in trouble, the Prime minister seemed not especially interested.  He is no doubt totting up the cost of the many p...

March 19, 2020


The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent virus threat and have therefore raised their threat level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, the level may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” 

The English have not been “A...

March 17, 2020

Infection, recession, remission

It has already been a bugger of a year, and we are still in the early autumn season. The VIRUS is decimating Italy and spreading quickly.  President Trump looked rattled on TV this morning, while his Veep, Mr Pence, stood behind him and t...

March 15, 2020


image: 'Bitcoin Mining and Field Recordings of Ethnic Minorities' (frame only). Liu Chuang. Courtesy of the artist and White Rabbit Gallery.

AND NOW, is the long-awaited exhibition that follows the previous White  Rabbit Gallery's ‘Then’ exhibitio...

March 14, 2020

It has already been a bugger of a year, and we are still in the early autumn season. The VIRUS is decimating Italy and spreading quickly.  President Trump looked rattled on TV this morning, while his Veep, Mr Pence, stood behind him and tried to scare him with very ang...

March 10, 2020

The world is waking up that recession is on the way.  Ever since the Global crisis economists have been baffled by low inflation and slow GDP growth.  To my mind, this combination is due to the big scare of the global crisis, fears of workers worried about losing their...

March 8, 2020


Director: Autumn de Wilde

Screenwriter Eleanor Catton

Jane Austen novels are things of charm and this movie adaptation of her novel ‘Emma’ will not leave Austen fans wanting.

I must admit that after covering the Mardi Gras these last weeks, watching 'Emma' was a littl...

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The next financial crisis ... is inevitable

The weekend AFR's article reporting the GFC work to save our financial system was interesting. RBA chief Glenn Steven is reported as saying something like: 'We flooded the system with liquidity'. (An action recommended by Bagehot all those years ago.)

Coincidentally, this week's Economist looks at the global equivalent under the heading 'Has finance been fixed?'

It concludes: 'Policymakers have made the economy safer, but they still have plenty of lessons to learn. And fracturing geopolitics make globalised finance even harder to deal with. A decade after Lehman failed, finance has a worrying amount to fix.'

Deep within the article is a statement I have not heard before.

'The Fed acted as lender of last resort to the world, offering foreigners $1trn of liquidity.

[other sources say total swaps were more like $ 11 trn]   Since then, offshore dollar debts have roughly doubled. In the next crisis, America’s political system is unlikely to let the Fed act as the backstop to this vast system, even after Donald Trump leaves the White House.'

This is a truly scary remark.

Comments welcome. Contact Henry here.



Who is Henry

 Henry Then...

"Henry Thornton (1760-1815) was a banker, M.P., philanthropist, and a leading figure in the influential group of Evangelicals that was known as the Clapham set. His 'Enquiry into the Nature and Effects of the Paper Credit of Great Britain (1802)' is an amazing performance. "...it anticipates in some points the analytic developments of a century to come. No other performance of the period will bear comparison with it, though several, among them Ricardo's, met with much greater success at the time as well as later... He was one of those men who see things clearly and who express with unassuming simplicity what they see."

This is the judgment of Joseph Schumpeter, one of the twentieth century's finest economists, in his monumental 'History of Economic Analysis', Allen and Unwin, 1954, p.689.


Henry Now...


Henry Thornton is the nom de plume of a prominent economist. Like his predecessor the modern Henry Thornton has been a banker and an advisor to M.P.s although he is not a politician himself. He is no evangelist but is keenly interested in a wide range of economic, social and political issues... 

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