Martin Armstrong is a self-taught economist who is starting to build an Internet following from an almost-empty office across the street from Philadelphia City Hall. He’s also an unrepentant felon who spent 11 years in prison for cheating investors out of $700 million and hiding $15 million in assets from regulators.
In Armstrong’s view of the world, where boom-bust cycles occur like clockwork every 8.6 years, what matters is his record as a forecaster, not as a criminal. He called Russia’s financial collapse in 1998, using a model that also pointed to a peak just before the Japanese stock market crashed in 1989. These days, as the European sovereign-debt crisis roils markets worldwide, he reminds readers of his October 1997 prediction that the creation of the euro “will merely transform currency speculation into bond speculation,” leading to the system’s eventual collapse.