Nouriel Roubini outlines the 10 forces that can cripple the economy: part 2

Episode 114 of Season 4 of The Scoop was recorded live with The Block's Frank Chaparro and Roubini Macro Associates Chairman and CEO Nouriel Roubini.

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Part one of this two-part special on Nouriel Roubini’s new book, Megathreats, examines how the economy is facing a combination of interconnected phenomena that Roubini believes will result in a severe economic crisis.

Roubini discusses some alternative assets that could gain prominence in the event of a global financial meltdown and explains why he prefers gold over bitcoin in such a situation, among other topics in his book Megathreats: Ten Dangerous Trends That Imperil Our Future, And How to Survive Them.

According to Roubini, the "weaponization" of the U.S. dollar is making it less attractive as a reserve currency:

“We have weaponized the dollar as a tool of national security and foreign policy… If I owe you a billion it is my problem; if I owe you a trillion it is your problem because we could default on those treasuries eventually if there is a conflict…”

Similar to USD, Roubini believes other common reserve currencies such as the euro, yen, pound, and Swiss franc can be similarly weaponized, leaving gold as the only widely held reserve currency that remains a viable option:

“What's the only other asset that is a liquid asset that can be a reserve currency? … What's the only one that cannot be seized if there are sanctions? It’s gold — as long as you keep it in your own vault.”

Although ardent bitcoin proponents claim BTC has similar properties, Roubini is dismissive of the largest cryptocurrency’s potential to be used legitimately in global commerce. 

“Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies — we know they are not currencies,” Roubini says, “They are not a unit of account, nobody's pricing anything in Bitcoin, they're not scalable means of payment.” 

During this episode Chaparro and Roubini also discuss:

  • How to distinguish between data and narratives
  • Why ‘zombie’ companies and nations are going to be exposed
  • The future impact of climate change on the housing market

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