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Code Red: How to Protect Your Savings From the Coming Crisis Hardcover – October 28, 2013

ISBN-13: 978-1118783726 ISBN-10: 1118783727 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (October 28, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118783727
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118783726
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (134 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,660 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“If you read only one book on finance this year, make it Code Red: How to Protect Your Savings from the Coming Crisis, by John Mauldin and Jonathan Tepper, authors of the bestseller Endgame, which delved into the 2008 collapse.”—Forbes magazine

From the Inside Flap

We're all guinea pigs in a grand monetary experiment being performed by the world's central banks. Quantitative easing, zero-percent interest rates, nominal GDP targeting, and other "Code Red" policies introduced by central bankers to pull the global economy back from the brink of collapse have remained in place long past their expiration date, setting the stage for potential disasters ahead.

While the outcome remains unclear, the fallout from the grand experiment is already affecting our quality of life and future prospects. While the wealthy continue to see their wealth soar to all new heights, real economic growth remains elusive and the standard of living is in decline for the majority of us. Savers now receive close to zero-percent interest on their savings, while the price of gasoline, rent, and groceries climb steadily. With government bond yields now trading well below the level of inflation, those who rely on pension funds and bonds for their retirement are being forced to seek whatever jobs they can find to help make ends meet. At the same time uncertainty is now the rule in the financial markets—especially in the emerging markets—and in a process authors John Mauldin and Jonathan Tepper liken to "picking up dimes in front of a steamroller," investors are chasing after riskier and riskier investments in pursuit of some small return on their investments.

In Code Red, John Mauldin and Jonathan Tepper perform an amazing feat: not only do they bring monetary policy down to earth for the average saver and investor, they make subjects such as quantitative easing, financial repression, currency wars, bubble economies and inflation, and their impact on our everyday lives and financial futures, compelling reading.

Just as importantly, they arm you with time-tested strategies for surviving and thriving in these tumultuous times. You'll discover how to spot and capitalize on market bubbles. And you'll learn proven money management techniques for insulating yourself against inflation, reducing risk through diversification, profiting from precious metals, commodities, and other real assets through managed futures funds, and more.

At this point it's anybody's guess if current monetary policies will succeed in creating sustained growth or if they will fail miserably leading the world into high levels of inflation. What is certain though is that those policies are producing all sorts of unintended consequences—most of them bad for the average saver and investor. Read Code Red and find out what the central bankers would rather you didn't know and how to protect your savings from the coming crisis.

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Customer Reviews

An incredibly well written and simple to understand book.
This book provides excellent reasoned insight into the current world economic situation and the extraordinarily risky actions of central banks around the world.
Amazon Customer
The only disappointment is the "advice." While the advice may be sound, and maybe even I agree, this answer is too basic for a book of this nature.
W. Johnson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

134 of 137 people found the following review helpful By David Merkel on December 1, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This is a tough book to review. It is correct in analysis of what went wrong, but overpromises in what its main goal is -- protecting assets before the next financial crisis.

Let me take a step back, and describe the structure of the book. A major goal of neoclassical macroeconomics is to try to eliminate the business cycle, and end up with smooth growth that minimizes unemployment.

As a result, central bankers, since they have a freer hand than politicians, as they are appointed, not elected, act to try to stimulate demand by lower interest rates. They did that from 1982 to 2008, until they came to the bottom rung of their ladder, and realized they could go no further.

Thus "Code Red" -- a situation that is an emergency. Many central banks felt they needed to act in an emergency to create liquidity to pump up economies with significant financial bankruptcies.

Would it work? When the central bankers started, all they had was theory, and Japan. Japan had tried out their theory, and it did them no good.

The academics argued that Japan did not do it right, and sadly, one was the Chairman of the Fed. Would that Bernanke had done his Ph.D. dissertation on another unrelated topic. Some historical accidents are real killers, and this was one. (As an aside: always be wary of academic researchers that have a lot invested in an idea. They cease to be neutral, and cause contrary data to be ignored, because you can always find a method to twist the data.)

Anyway, that is the first and longer part of the book explaining how bankrupt. untested theories led us to a situation where debt levels are high with governments, and central banks are ultra-loose.
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105 of 107 people found the following review helpful By Pablo Fredorico on November 2, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Written in a comfortable conversational style, (with many entertaining apropos quotes from mainstream pop culture as well as eminent economists and philosophers from the past) Code Red exposes what makes the current situation unique in the history of fiat currencies. The new and somewhat scary methods of central bank economic influence, Quantitative Easing (QE) and long-term zero interest rate policy, (ZIRP) have never been tried before.

So far it has worked, staving off what would have certainly been a crippling deflation. But once you start QE it isn't clear how you stop. And the longer it goes on, the bigger the potential problem becomes. As long as QE continues (and it's not clear it will ever stop):

* The bigger the tinder box of low velocity reserves on bank balance sheets will become. The authors point out that just because this money hasn't been lent out to chase goods and service prices higher in an inflationary spiral for the past three years doesn't mean it can't. Just because gunpowder hasn't exploded, doesn't mean it won't, doesn't make it safe.
* The steady climb in asset prices engendered by central banks has been orderly, but is inherently destabilizing. Their analogy of a tall sand-pile, built ever higher grain by grain... The taller it becomes, the less stable it is. Sure it looks stable, standing there stationary as can be, but when perturbed by another grain of sand it is very difficult to estimate how big the avalanche might be. But one thing we can predict, the taller the sand-pile, the more the central bank policy pumps up asset prices, the better the chances are that we will see large disruptive avalanches.
* The central bankers cannot acknowledge this instability. In large measure their job is to engender confidence.
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240 of 264 people found the following review helpful By The Constant Traveler on November 8, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is well researched and written, goes into great depth regarding the problem central bankers are creating, and contains many amusing analogies. The title of the book, " Code Red:How to Protect Your Savings from the Coming Crisis", is highly misleading.The book fails miserably in that regard and provides virtually no concrete guidance on how to protect your savings from the coming crisis. The main takeaway is "find yourself a good financial adviser". Key lessons from the chapter " How to Protect Yourself against Inflation" can be written on the back of an envelope and wouldn't come as a surprise to the average investor.No mention is made of real estate as a hedge against inflation. The book is sort of a sequel to the author's last book, Endgame: The End of the Debt Supercycle and How It Changes Everything. OK, the sky has been falling since Nixon took us off of the gold standard, our national debt has increased dramatically, and the market(DJIA) has gone up more than 15x. This book is next to useless in guiding the average investor on how to deal with the unfolding scenario.Save your money for something worthwhile.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book essentially comes in two parts. The first is a solid analysis of the state of the global economy with regard to pervasive imbalances in the finances of governments around the world and the extreme measures currently being taken by central banks in order to keep the system from esentially imploding. This is the "bad things are going to happen" part of the book. The second part "and now we're going to tell you what to do about it" is almost laughable. The authors essentially advise the reader to maintain a balanced portfolio and guard against inflation. Excellent advice for any investor but not something you need to write a book about.
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