Does Fed Balance Sheet “Normalization” Signal The Next Asset Collapse Has Begun?

By Tyler Durden

Authored by Chris Hamilton via Econimica blog,

After nearly a half century of unlimited dollar creation, multiple bubbles and busts…the current asset reflation has been the most spectacular…but alas, perhaps too successful. The Fed’s answer to control or restrain this present reflation is raising interest rates to stem the flow of business activity, lending, and excessive leverage in financial markets. But in the Fed’s post QE world, a massive $2 trillion in private bank excess reserves still waits like a coil under tension, ready to release if it leaves the Federal Reserve. Thus, the only means to control this centrally created asset bubble is to continuously pay banks higher interest rates (almost like paying the mafia for protection…from the mafia) not to return those dollars to their original owners or put them to work. With each successive hike, banks are paid another quarter point to take no risk, make no loan, and just get paid billions for literally doing nothing.

The chart below shows the nearly $4.4 trillion Federal Reserve balance sheet, (acquired via QE, red line), nearly $2 trillion in private bank excess reserves (blue line), and the interest rate paid on those excess reserves (black …read more

Source:: ZeroHedge