“The still very low long-term interest rates in the US may, therefore, tell us something important: Investors expect the Fed to keep rates at fairly low levels in what lays ahead; they expect the central bank to refrain from returning yields to levels formerly considered ‘normal.’ Against this backdrop, the latest series of rates increases is merely seen as a cosmetic adjustment .. The US economy, and with it the world economy, is caught between a rock and a hard place. Maybe the Fed’s current rate hiking spree will bring about the bust. Or the Fed refrains from raising rates further and keeps the boom going a little bit longer. Ludwig von Mises put the predicament as follows:
The boom cannot continue indefinitely. There are two alternatives. Either the banks continue the credit expansion without restriction and thus cause constantly mounting price increases and an ever-growing orgy of speculation, which, as in all other cases of unlimited inflation, ends in a “crack-up boom” and in a collapse of the money and credit system. Or the banks stop before this point is reached, voluntarily renounce further credit expansion and thus bring about the crisis. The depression follows in both instances.
Given current bond and stock market valuations, investors seem to be fairly confident that the Fed will succeed in keeping the boom going, that the central bank will not overdo it in terms of raising interest rates. And yes, perhaps central bankers have learned a great deal in recent years, having become true maestros in holding up the make believe world of fiat money. The investor should be aware of the damages caused by fiat money — for instance, boom and bust. At the same time, he should not run for the exit prematurely: The fiat money system might be held up for longer than some may fear and others might hope, so that keeping inflation-resistant assets may be more rewarding than betting on an imminent system crash.”