Banks, pharma and others

The macro and micro role played by the state is depressing. Banks are now utilities, so highly regulated that they must employ about as many deadweight compliance officers as the people actually making money. If a bank has the temerity to make money, it earns the scorn of the nation and in all probability more regulations and oversight because it is intuitively held by the authorities that it should not have made money or, if it did so, it must have been by nefarious means and should be punished. I own no banks.

And pharma? Again, it is visited by the wrath of the nation. I have concluded the only thing to do with this indispensable sector is hold a spread of ETFs; individual company risk is too high.

It is a mercy technology is allowed to breathe, although you would not believe the disdain in Europe for all the big players. Fortunately, the state has a hard time keeping up with technology and its popularity makes politicians doubtful. Consumer staples also seem to get a kind of pass, presumably because bureaucrats need to eat (although I thought zombies did not eat).

Thus the government’s actions (20T and rising; 500B and rising; artificial interest rates, artificial markets) in making the bond market and the most defensive sectors fraught with danger, drive the investor into ever greater risk to find a return.