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WHAT MY ELITE FRIEND TOLD ME… – A New DVD From Pastor Lindsey Williams

 WHAT MY ELITE FRIEND TOLD ME…
…WHAT TO EXPECT BETWEEN NOW AND JANUARY 1, 2017!
New DVD From Lindsey Williams
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  • What will take place after October 1, 2016?
  • Will Donald Trump be the next president?
  • If he wins, will Trump be allowed to take office?
  • Elite Divine Encounter.
  • Two currencies – One devalued?
  • Big trouble among the Elite.
  • The date of the CRASH!
  • The most encouraging DVD From Pastor Williams to date.
  • Hear congressmen Ron Paul and David Stockman.

Pastor Lindsey Williams

Author of The Energy Non-Crisis

Lindsey Williams - My Elite Friend Told Me... What to expect between now and January 1, 2017.

 WHAT MY ELITE FRIEND TOLD ME…
…WHAT TO EXPECT BETWEEN NOW AND JANUARY 1, 2017!
The New DVD From
Pastor Lindsey Williams
Order NOW Online For SHIPMENT NOW!*

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Invitation by Pastor Lindsey Williams – From DVD – Elite Plans For 2016

This is an invitation by Pastor Lindsey Williams taken from the DVD ‘Elite Plans For 2016‘. Lindsey Williams, an ordained Baptist minister went to Alaska in 1970 as a missionary. For three years Pastor Lindsey Williams had the opportunity to sit, live and rub shoulders with the most powerful, controlling and manipulative men on the face of this planet.

PLEASE SHARE PASTOR WILLIAMS MESSAGE TO EVERYONE YOU KNOW!

 


ELITE PLANS FOR 2016 – A New DVD From Pastor Lindsey Williams

 ELITE PLANS FOR 2016
TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION!
New DVD From Lindsey Williams
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Available for shipment now!*

  • Who will be the next president of the U.S.?
  • Why no financial collapse in 2015?

  • Hear from someone in contact with the Elite.

  • Political Correctness.

  • Five firearms every American should own.

  • Is war inevitable?

Pastor Lindsey Williams

Author of The Energy Non-Crisis

Lindsey Williams - Elite Plans For 2016: Take Immediate Action - DVD Cover

ELITE PLANS FOR 2016
TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION!
The New DVD From
Pastor Lindsey Williams
Order NOW Online For SHIPMENT NOW!*

Click The Order Button Below

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*Immediate shipment is not guaranteed. All orders will be shipped in the order they are received as time and production allows.

This is your best DVD Ever! Extremely informative & I appreciate you answering many of our questions in the DVD, for those who have followed you over the years. Your son did a great job in his presentation on firearms.

I have followed you for years & have continued to purchase your DVD’s through Prophecy Club… My wife & I are very grateful to you, for information you have shared with the world.

We have done all the things you have suggested & we are at peace. We are both followers of Jesus Christ, our LORD and Savior!

God Bless You & Your Family,

Michael & DeAnna

Customer Testimonial

I just received LW’s latest DVD on 2016, and it is riveting. As a born again Christian believer, who also believes in the pre-Tribulation rapture, it is very heartening to hear any preacher these days present a good old-fashioned Gospel message and belief in the rapture. I really felt this DVD was more like a “left behind” DVD, as none of us (nor God Himself) can force people to believe; one must accept the Truth by free will.

Thank you for considering,

Chad

Customer Testimonial

ELITE PLANS FOR 2016
TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION!
The New DVD From
Pastor Lindsey Williams
Order NOW Online For SHIPMENT NOW!*

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Lindsey Williams Online – DVDs Now Available Online!

Lindsey Williams Online - DVD Bundle 2

Over 20+ Presentations Detailing 40 Years
Exposing The Elites Plan for Humanity and this Planet!
Available Online For The First Time!

Over 46 Hours of Content Now Available to Watch & Listen To Instantly On Your Computer, Laptop, Tablet or Mobile Phone.

Every DVD and Presentation Produced by Pastor Lindsey Williams until the end of 2014 now available to view online, including: Exclusive content only available online at LindseyWilliamsOnline.com, content available without advertisements in Digital Streaming format and content Digitally Remastered from Original Recordings!

Including 3 Presentations Never Before Available Online!

All the DVDs, Videos & Presentations included in this Special Package… Available for Instant Streaming on your PC, Laptop, Tablet or Smart Phone…

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Special Events Scheduled for 2015, 2015 – Elite Agenda, Global Currency Reset, Elite Emergency Data, Healing the Elite Way, New Signs of the Elite, The Next 4 Years & How to Survive the Next Four Years, Secrets of the Elite, 2012 The Beginning of the End, Middle East: The Rest of the Story, The Elite Speak, Tragedy/Hope/Reality, Confessions of an Elitist, Jonathan May Economic Hitman, Torn from the Land, Are They Worth the Risk Immunizations/Vaccinations, Deadly Diseases and Microbial Mutations, 3 Different Versions of The Energy Non-Crisis Presentation. All Included!

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GLOBAL CURRENCY RESET – New DVD From Pastor Lindsey Williams

Lindsey Williams - Global Currency Reset - New DVD

GLOBAL CURRENCY RESET
New DVD From Lindsey Williams
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The greatest event in the financial world in the past 1,000 years is about to take place. Two hundred and four nations have agreed with the IMF (International Monetary Fund) to reset their currency. Christine Lagarde is the new financial head of the IMF. If she and the Elite have their way, this event will take place within the next ninety days (three months).

The Elite have prepared you for this event with an Electric Smart Meter which has been installed on almost every house in America. Only from my Elite friend will you ever know what has been done to you. Only in my new DVD will you learn these details. No one else will dare to tell you this.

Time is no longer on your side. Its time to take action and protect yourself today. You can order “Global Currency Reset” from Prophecy Club.

Pastor Lindsey Williams

Author of The Energy Non-Crisis

You must know what a
GLOBAL CURRENCY RESET
is and take immediate precautions

Two hours of explanation

From Lindsey Williams - Global Currency Reset - New DVD

GLOBAL CURRENCY RESET
New DVD From Lindsey Williams

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10 Steps To Avoid The Crash! – An article by James Harkin

10 Steps To Avoid The Crash

Pastor Lindsey Williams has confirmed that there will be be a worldwide economic and financial crash slated for 2015 after the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (HR 3590) is fully enacted. The act is not a healthcare bill but works hand in glove with the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT ACT) Act of 2001 (HR 3162) for total control of the USA and ultimately the world in one swift move. The word is control and their ultimate goal is to enslave the entire population of the planet. The plan is so ingenious and simple it’s incredible. This is not a theory, this is the truth and verified by the very highest echelons of the elite. The crash must happen, the economies of the world are already on a knife-edge one piece of bad news and it will come crashing down taking all the banks, investment banks and pension funds with it. Chaos will reign and out of the chaos order will come. It is taking place so the elite can come to the rescue and that will see the initiation of the new world government and the debasement of the US Dollar. The crash that is coming will make 2008 look like a minor financial correction. Imagine all companies, all businesses, all mortgages all owned by the elite. Its a very real threat and you only have a short window in order to protect yourself from it. This is why I have taken Pastor Lindsey Williams steps to avoid the crash as he shared in his new DVD “Elite Emergency Data” and expanded them into an extensive article to hopefully explain what is happening, why and how you can protect your family from it, even prosper from it…

I have outlined the 10 Steps To Avoid The Crash in several sections to make it easier to digest, please read it all and follow the steps as best you can:

Once you have carried out these 10 steps you will be better able to survive, even thrive through the coming collapse. Of course a lot of people’s situations do not permit them to carry out all the steps, just do as much as you can. Being prepared for the worst is the best protection. Please share the articles with as many people as you can, because everyone needs to know what has been planned for them by the elite.

Please do not take the article lightly and do not take it at face value. Please do your own research and if you have a differing opinion, please share it.

I have also created the entire 10 Steps To Avoid The Crash article into a 100 page illustrated PDF E-Book. Please download and share it freely. Download the e-book here.

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Lindsey Williams' DVDs

ELITE EMERGENCY DATA – New DVD From Pastor Lindsey Williams

Lindsey Williams - Elite Emergency Data - New DVDELITE EMERGENCY DATA
New DVD From Lindsey Williams
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I promised you, that when my elite friend told me the time for the crash to take place, that I would tell you!

My Elite friend has told me when the collapse of the banks and the crash of the dollar will take place.

There are TWO other collapse which you must know about that will affect you and your family more than the collapse of the dollar.

A few weeks from now I may or I may not appear on radio shows with this information.

It is imperative for you to get this information now before its too late. You can order “Elite Emergency Data” from Prophecy Club.

Pastor Lindsey Williams

Author of The Energy Non-Crisis

From Lindsey Williams - The DVD Is Ready

ELITE EMERGENCY DATA
New DVD From Lindsey Williams

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The Truth About the Health Care Bills

AFTER you have viewed the new DVD “Elite Emergency Data” Please read the report by Attorney Connelly and you will understand why the Health Care Bill is related to the Total Financial Collapse – Chaplain Lindsey Williams

Say No To The Healthcare Bill

The Truth About the Health Care Bills – Michael Connelly, Ret. Constitutional Attorney

Well, I have done it! I have read the entire text of proposed House Bill 3200: The Affordable Health Care Choices Act of 2009. I studied it with particular emphasis from my area of expertise, constitutional law. I was frankly concerned that parts of the proposed law that were being discussed might be unconstitutional. What I found was far worse than what I had heard or expected.

To begin with, much of what has been said about the law and its implications is in fact true, despite what the Democrats and the media are saying. The law does provide for rationing of health care, particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion services, and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession.

The Bill will also eventually force private insurance companies out of business, and put everyone into a government run system. All decisions about personal health care will ultimately be made by federal bureaucrats, and most of them will not be health care professionals. Hospital admissions, payments to physicians, and allocations of necessary medical devices will be strictly controlled by the government.

However, as scary as all of that is, it just scratches the surface. In fact, I have concluded that this legislation really has no intention of providing affordable health care choices. Instead it is a convenient cover for the most massive transfer of power to the Executive Branch of government that has ever occurred, or even been contemplated. If this law or a similar one is adopted, major portions of the Constitution of the United States will effectively have been destroyed.

The first thing to go will be the masterfully crafted balance of power between the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of the U.S. Government. The Congress will be transferring to the Obama Administration authority in a number of different areas over the lives of the American people, and the businesses they own.

The irony is that the Congress doesn’t have any authority to legislate in most of those areas to begin with! I defy anyone to read the text of the U.S. Constitution and find any authority granted to the members of Congress to regulate health care.

This legislation also provides for access, by the appointees of the Obama administration, in direct violation of the specific provisions of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution, of all of your personal healthcare information, your personal financial information, and the information of your employer, physician, and hospital. All of this is a protecting against unreasonable searches and seizures. You can also forget about the right to privacy. That will have been legislated into oblivion regardless of what the 3rd and 4th Amendments may provide.

If you decide not to have healthcare insurance, or if you have private insurance that is not deemed acceptable to the Health Choices Administrator appointed by Obama, there will be a tax imposed on you. It is called a tax instead of a fine because of the intent to avoid application of the due process clause of the 5th Amendment. However , that doesn’t work because since there is nothing in the law that allows you to contest or appeal the imposition of the tax, it is definitely depriving someone of property without the due process of law.

So, there are three of those pesky amendments that the far left hate so much, out the original ten in the Bill of Rights, that are effectively nullified by this law. It doesn’t stop there though.

The 9th Amendment that provides: The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people;

The 10th Amendment states: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are preserved to the States respectively, or to the people. Under the provisions of this piece of Congressional handiwork neither the people nor the states are going to have any rights or powers at all in many areas that once were theirs to control.

I could write many more pages about this legislation, but I think you get the idea.

This is not about health care; it is about seizing power and limiting rights. Article 6 of the Constitution requires the members of both houses of Congress to “be bound by oath or affirmation to support the Constitution.” If I was a member of Congress I would not be able to vote for this legislation or anything like it, without feeling I was violating that sacred oath or affirmation. If I voted for it anyway, I would hope the American people would hold me accountable.

For those who might doubt the nature of this threat, I suggest they consult the source, the US Constitution, and Bill of Rights. There you can see exactly what we are about to have taken from us.

Michael Connelly (First published in June 2012)
Retired attorney,
Constitutional Law Instructor
Carrollton, Texas

AFTER HAVING READ THIS, PLEASE SHARE…

WE MUST HOLD CONGRESS ACCOUNTABLE BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE!

If you have not yet obtained a copy of Pastor Lindsey Williams’ new DVD “Elite Emergency Data” you can obtain one from Prophecy Club.

Find out more about Lindsey Williams’ DVDs
Lindsey Williams' DVDs

HEALING THE ELITE WAY – New DVD From Lindsey Williams

Healing The Elite Way - New DVD From Lindsey Williams

HEALING THE ELITE WAY
New DVD From Lindsey Williams

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“The Most Important DVD I Have Ever Made!
It Saved My Life!
This DVD May Save Your Life!”
Pastor Lindsey Williams

Think About It –

No President of the United States has ever died from Cancer.

– Why? What do they know that you don’t know?

President Ronald Reagan was diagnosed with Colon Cancer while he was President. He imported a substance that was illegal to be used in the United States at that time. He never had a reoccurrence.

There is no reason to suffer from –

  • Cancer
  • Heart Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Hepatitis C
  • Hormonal Imbalance
  • Vascular Disease
  • Immunological Imbalance

“The Elite know how to be healed – I have been told some of their secrets. Thus, this DVD, Healing the Elite Way.” – Lindsey Williams 

Lindsey Williams

Author of The Energy Non-Crisis

 HEALING THE ELITE WAY
New DVD From Lindsey Williams

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Introduction to Lindsey Williams

Lindsey Williams, an ordained Baptist minister went to Alaska in 1970 as a missionary. While in Alaska, Pastor Williams found out about the Trans-Alaska oil pipeline, which began construction on 29th April 1974. Because of Pastor Williams’ love for the USA and concern for the spiritual welfare of the over 25,000 workers on the pipeline, he volunteered to serve as Chaplain on the pipeline, with the full support of the Alyeska Pipeline Company.

Lindsey Williams Official

Pastor Williams was given the northern 7 out of the 28 construction camps including the oil field at Prudhoe Bay to hold worship services at the 7 camps once a day. After six months a PR employee at Alyeska Pipeline Company told Pastor Lindsey Williams that he was an invaluable asset to the company. He said that Lindsey was saving the oil pipeline company thousands of dollars of counselling fees and had voted successfully to give Pastor Williams executive status if he wished to accept it. Executive status meant that Lindsey Williams could go anywhere he liked and see anything he wanted regarding the pipeline operation. They gave him a vehicle and an executive pass and he was also invited to sit in on board meetings in an advisory capacity in order to help the relationship between management and labour.

For three years Pastor Lindsey Williams had the opportunity to sit, live and rub shoulders with the most powerful, controlling and manipulative men on the face of this planet.

The site I have created will document what happened to Pastor Lindsey Williams during his time as chaplain to the Alyeska Pipeline Company and what has happened subsequently regarding the elite’s plan for control of the world and its resources.

Invitation by Pastor Lindsey Williams…

Lindsey Williams gives the most important message you will ever hear…

The Bible says there is only one way to Heaven:

Jesus said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” (John 14:6)

Good works cannot save you.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Trust Jesus Christ today! Here’s what you must do:

Admit you are a sinner.

“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Romans 3:23)

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” (Romans 5:12)

“If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (1 John 1:10)

Be willing to turn from sin (repent).

Jesus said: “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.” (Luke 13:5)

Believe that Jesus Christ died for you, was buried, and rose from the dead.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners. Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” (Romans 10:9)

Through prayer, invite Jesus into your life to become your personal Saviour.

“For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:10)

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13)

What to pray:

Dear God, I am a sinner and need forgiveness. I believe that Jesus Christ shed His precious blood and died for my sin. I am willing to turn from sin. I now invite Christ to come into my heart and life as my personal Saviour.

Lindsey Williams At IBC Hospital & Health Center in Tijuana, Mexico

Pastor Lindsey Williams will be at the IBC Hospital & Health Center in Tijuana, Mexico under the care of Rodrigo Rodriguez MD, Medical Director as a part of his “Tune Up” from 3rd March 2013.

Pastor Lindsey Williams & Rodrigo Rodriguez, MD at IBC Hospital & Health Center, Tijuana, Mexico

Pastor Lindsey Williams & Rodrigo Rodriguez, MD at IBC Hospital & Health Center, Tijuana, Mexico

From March 11, 2013 through March 15, 2013 Pastor Williams will be holding a number of radio shows with Dr. Rodriguez to discuss that doctors all over America are closing their offices and leaving the medical profession because of the new healthcare system beginning January 1, 2013. Pastor Williams and Dr. Rodriguez will be discussing this and more information relating to the elite and their plan for humanity and this planet including where the elite go for their healthcare needs including treatments available at International Bio Care Hospital & Medical Center in Tijuana, Mexico.

IBC Hospital Treatment Philosophy

IBC Hospital Treatment Philosophy Please Click Image For Brochure

 For further information relating to IBC Hospital & Health Center please call: 1-800-701-7345

Website: http://www.biocarehospital.com/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BioCareHospitalPage

 For Photos of IBC Hospital & Health Center 

Latest News Articles – June 23, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From June 17, 2016 to June 23, 2016:

  • Gold Prices: This Catalyst to Send Gold to $2,000?
    Negative interest rates (which mean you are paying a bank or government to hold your money instead of them paying you) are coming to North America and with that, gold prices could soar. So far, 2016 has already been a banner year for gold prices. In fact, gold has been the best-performing investment this year. But I think the “party is only getting started” for gold prices. Below is a chart of the 10-year U.S. Treasury. From the chart, you can easily see the yield on 10-year U.S. Treasuries has been moving in an almost perfect downward trend since 2006—that’s 10 years ago.
  • Share-Buyback Announcements Plunge, Stocks Risk Getting Clocked
    In 2015, S&P 500 companies bought back $569 billion of their own shares, down just a smidgen from $572 billion in 2014, according to FactSet. That’s a combined $1.14 trillion in stock repurchases. With the S&P 500 market capitalization at $18.8 trillion currently, corporate buybacks over the past two years have mopped up about 6% of the total float in dollar terms. And this has been happening year after year with increasing vehemence since 2010. While some sectors already cut back in 2015, buybacks soared 44% in the Industrial sector and 26% in the Consumer Discretionary sector. Companies buying back their own shares act purposefully as the relentless bid, with the sole goal of driving up share prices. They want to buy high! And it works.
  • Elizabeth Warren’s War on the Poor
    There is no American politician more closely associated with “progressive” economic causes than Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. The senator is widely regarded by the political Left as an expert on financial issues, is a self-professed champion of the “working poor,” and is a proud, finger-wagging chastiser of the 1 percent and Wall Street. Her cause is to lift up the least powerful and protect them from the most powerful. She appears to genuinely believe in this cause, and has made several policy proposals that she believes will serve it. Because of her position and the public’s association of the senator with this cause, it is assumed that the policies she proposes will in fact serve it, and that anyone who supports the same causes should get on board and support her proposed policies.
  • End in Sight for Alaska’s Oil-Based Economy?
    Alaska has long been one of the few U.S. states without an income tax. Thanks to its incredible bounty of natural resources, the state had more than enough cash coming in through oil company taxes and especially Prudhoe Bay production. All of that is starting to change. After a 40 year oil boom that transformed Alaska from a frozen tundra into one of the richest states in the country, the oil price crash is bringing reality back to bear. Alaska’s problems go deeper than the current oil price collapse though. Simply put, the state is getting long in the tooth – at least as far as its productive assets go. The Prudhoe Bay Oil field, once the largest such field in North America, is starting to reach the end of its life. In 1985, the Prudhoe Bay field was pumping 2 million barrels per day – roughly a quarter of the total U.S. output. Today it is pumping 500,000 barrels a day. That’s leaving the 800 mile Trans-Alaska pipeline seriously under-utilized.
  • US Freight Drops to Worst May since 2010
    “May is usually a relatively strong month for freight shipments, but given the high inventories with ever slower turnover rates and the decline in new production orders, May could be another soft month,” predicted Rosalyn Wilson at Cass Transportation a month ago. It has now come to pass – only worse. Freight shipments by truck and rail in the US, excluding commodities, fell 5.8% in May 2016 from the already anemic levels in May 2015, and 7.0% from May 2014, according to the Cass Freight Index, released today. It was the worst May since 2010. “This year we have failed to see the robust growth in shipments that we expect to see this time of year,” Wilson lamented.
  • The man responsible for Germany’s hyperinflation nightmare has a scary lesson for modern economics
    Every now and then it helps to dig through the past to think about what’s going on in the present. So let’s rewind back to 1920s Germany. Back then the country was stuck in a less-than-ideal economic situation after the suspension of the gold standard and Kaiser Wilhelm II’s failure to pass an income tax to help pay for World War I. To deal with the huge debts left over after the Great War, the president of the country’s central bank, Rudolf von Havenstein, printed up a ton of money. But that idea backfired. It led to skyrocketing hyperinflation, economic breakdown, weaker institutions, and a destabilization of German politics.
  • Central bank titans warn of Brexit tremors as global recession fears surface
    The two most powerful people in central banking have given their strongest warning yet on the impact of a Brexit vote, as top US bank Morgan Stanley warned that a British decision to leave could push the world towards recession. Janet Yellen, chair of the US Federal Reserve, and Mario Draghi, the European Central Bank president, have warned that a vote for Brexit could have deleterious effects for the global economy. With only two days to go before Britons head to the polls, Ms Yellen warned that a withdrawal from the EU “could have significant economic repercussions”, during her testimony to the US Senate banking committee.
  • There’s No Other Way to Say It: Minimum Wage Laws Are Racist
    Unfortunately, the agenda of early twentieth century leftists has proven effective; minimum wage laws are still bearing racist fruit today. Specifically, low-skilled minorities are being priced out of the job market. As small business owners are forced to pay a higher wage than their employees produce, employers are often forced to cut staff. A story published by BET in 2011 highlighted the negative effect that minimum wage hikes have on black teens. Another report, published by the American Legislative Exchange Council, unpacks several studies on the impact of minimum wage hikes. ALEC reports, “The bottom line is that someone must pay for the costs associated with an increased minimum wage. Often, because a business cannot pay these costs, they are paid for by the individuals the minimum wage is intended to help — low-skilled, undereducated individuals – as they lose out on job opportunities.” Later, the report breaks it down even further and delivers the sobering news that “a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage decreases minority employment by 3.9 percent, with the majority of the burden falling on minority youth whose employment levels will decrease by 6.6 percent.”
  • Gold and Brexit
    Gold is soaring. It should—and a lot—but in my view not for the reason it is. Indeed gold is insurance for uncertain times, a time that Brexit seems to represent. But insurance is an administrative cost — one must minimize its use. Moreover, insuring against Brexit might ironically be equivalent to insuring against a good event. The market believes that Brexit will lead to wealth-destruction (based on its statist views, in which those running our institutions are omniscient, when they actually are quite naive, incompetent, and incapable of understanding the concept of complexity).
  • ALERT: SentimenTrader Issues Extremely Important Update On The Gold Market
    With continued consolidation in the gold and silver markets, below is an extremely important update on the gold market that was just issued by SentimenTrader. From Jason Goepfert at SentimenTrader:  “The Optimism Index on gold has moved above 75 for the first time since 2011, a troubling level. That’s especially true since “smart money” commercial hedgers have moved to a near-record net short position against the metal. It suffered a key reversal day as sellers rejected a new 52-week high on June 16, but those one-day patterns have been inconsistent predictors of further weakness. Even so, we consider the market to be high-risk.
  • Brexit: What Is It About? — Paul Craig Roberts
    If you read the presstitute media, Brexit—the referendum tomorrow on the UK’s exit from the EU— is about racism. According to the story line, angry rightwing racists of violent inclinations want to leave the EU to avoid having to accept more dark-skinned immigrants into England. Despite the constant propaganda against exit, polls indicated that more favored leaving the EU than remaining until a female member of Parliament, Jo Cox, was killed by a man that a witness said shouted “Brexit.” Cox was an opponent of leaving the EU. The UK government and presstitute media used Cox’s murder to drive home the propaganda that violent racists were behind Brexit. However, other witnesses gave a different report. The Guardian, which led with the propaganda line, did report later in its account that “Other witnesses said the attack was launched after the MP became involved in an altercation involving two men near where she held her weekly surgery.” Of course, we will never know, because Cox’s murder is too valuable of a weapon against Brexit.
  • Here’s why gold could jump 10% very soon
    “Gold is a reliable barometer of risk, and we believe it could rally by up to 10% should the UK vote to leave the EU,” that’s according to a flash research note from HSBC’s chief precious metals analyst James Steel sent to clients today. According to the report, if the UK votes to leave the European Union on June 23, the price of gold could rally by 10% to around $1400 an ounce as investors look to the yellow metal to provide a safe haven in times of uncertainty. What’s more, gold could also benefit from the reluctance of investors to move into sterling or even the euro following a ‘leave’ vote.
  • Why Janet Ain’t Yellin’ “Higher Interest” Anymore: Jobs Worse than Expected and Far Worse than Reported
    In the fall of 2015, I said the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates once in December then would not be able to fly any higher thereafter. The stock market would crash shortly after the Fed pulled up on the interest stick (which it did in what became the worst January in stock-market history), and then the Fed’s hopes of recovery would fade away. I also said that, in spite of a continually degrading economic situation around the world, the Fed would badly want to lift its interest target again in order to prove its recovery had recovered from the first lift. The fact that it would not be able to without stalling the economy completely wouldn’t mean it wouldn’t try. If it did try, however, it would find out in hindsight that any additional pull back on the stick would crash the economy into the dust of the earth.
  • NY Fed Warns about Booming Subprime Mortgages, now Insured by the Government
    The New York Fed just warned about the ticking mortgage subprime time bombs once again being amassed, and what happens to them when home prices decline. But unlike during the last housing bust, a large portion of these time bombs are now guaranteed by the government. Subprime mortgages are what everyone still remembers about the Financial Crisis. They blew up has home prices fell. Folks who thought they were “owners with equity” found out that they were just “renters with debt.”
  • Anxiety Builds As Money Managers Near Record Long Gold Position
    “There’s still a lot of fear out there,” warns one investor as the combination of event risks (e.g. Brexit, Spain, US Election) and the contagious collapse of central bank credibility has asset managers around the world piling into bonds and bullion. With negative rates now de rigeur, global developed market bond yields are pushing record lows as demand for protection from fiat debacles in precious metals (and alternative currencies) has sent money managers long position near Aug 2011’s record highs. As Fed credibility collapses (red line – inverted expectations of rate-hike-pace) so Gold (gold line) and global developed market bonds (green line) have soared tick for tick…
  • Unprecedented Mainstream Media Criticism of Central Banking Bodes Ill for the Larger Economy
    There is definitely considerable negativity about central banking in the mainstream media these days. This is surprising, on the one hand, because central banking provides the foundation of the current economic system, worldwide. On the other hand, such negativity may be signaling far worse. Our theory, for years has been that the central banking system is presented as something that is economically positive when, in fact, it is quite negative and responsible for the gradual collapse of Western prosperity. The mainstream media makes no real reference to the state of the West – or the world – when it comes to the larger economy. China is collapsing. The European Union is half-bankrupt. The US is in a kind of depression. But until recently the system that has created this mayhem has been treated as a kind of eternal or natural constant, like the sky or the moon or the sun. Now however, with half the West running on negative interest rates, the cracks cannot be papered over. The recent Bilderberg meetings apparently focused in large part on the economy. Disaster was predicted and preparations were made. In fact, this is how economies and economic systems “evolve.” Out of “chaos,” order.
  • Switzerland withdraws longstanding application to join EU
    The upper house of the Swiss parliament on Wednesday voted to invalidate its 1992 application to join the European Union, backing an earlier decision by the lower house. The vote comes just a week before Britain decides whether to leave the EU in a referendum. Twenty-seven members of the upper house, the Council of States, voted to cancel Switzerland’s longstanding EU application, versus just 13 senators against. Two abstained. In the aftermath of the vote, Switzerland will give formal notice to the EU to consider its application withdrawn, the country’s foreign minister, Didier Burkhalter, was quoted as saying by Neue Zürcher Zeitung. The original motion was introduced by the conservative Swiss People’s Party MP, Lukas Reimann. It had already received overwhelming support from legislators in the lower house of parliament in March, with 126 National Council deputies voting in favor, and 46 against.
  • Propaganda, Depression And The Greatest Illusionist Of All Time
    On the heels of the dollar moving higher and the gold and silver markets getting hit, today one of the greats in the business discusses today’s action, and also included are some questions and answers about the market, precious metals. By Bill Fleckenstein President Of Fleckenstein Capital. The “remain” party continued overnight, with most equity markets rallying about 1%. Naturally, the U.S. stock market joined in, though to a slightly lesser degree, with the indices just fractionally higher through midday. In the afternoon the market strengthened somewhat and with an hour to go it was about 0.3% higher (with the Nasdaq lagging)…
  • IMF issues warning saying eurozone is ‘weak’ and on the brink of collapse – but STILL insists we shouldn’t vote out
    The eurozone is on the brink of another financial crisis – but leaving the EU would still plunge Britain into recession, the IMF said last night. In its latest controversial intervention in the referendum campaign, the International Monetary Fund said the eurozone was in danger of being torn apart by political tensions. It said that while the single currency bloc had recovered over the past six months, the medium-term future looked ‘weak’ and that it was racked by high unemployment and bad debts. It also said the failure of the EU to tackle the refugee crisis had ‘vividly exposed political fault lines’ which threatened the entire European project.
  • Credit Suisse CEO Said to Tell Staff Shorts Wrong on Capital
    Credit Suisse Group AG Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam said hedge funds are wrong to assume that the Swiss lender will have to raise additional capital after the shares touched a fresh all-time low last week, according to two people with knowledge of the matter. The lender’s share price is hurt by “an unusually high level of short positions,” Thiam wrote in a memo to staff last week, the people said, asking not to be identified because the contents are private. While some hedge funds are speculating on another capital increase, partly because of restructuring measures and operational losses, they’re “not correct,” Thiam wrote.
  • Janet Yellen’s $200-Trillion Debt Problem
    The U.S. stock market broke its losing streak on Thursday [and even more so on Monday, ed.]. After five straight losing sessions, the Dow eked out a 92-point gain. The financial media didn’t know what to say about it. So, we ended up with the typical inanities, myths, and claptrap. “Brexit panic may be your big chance to buy the S&P 500,” says a headline at Marketwatch. The article claims investors have pushed down the value of the S&P 500 in fear of a so-called “Brexit.” Next Thursday, in a national referendum, British voters will decide whether to end Britain’s 43-year membership in the European Union. But there are a number of problems with this… First, there has been no big rout in the S&P 500; it’s only slightly below its all-time high. Second, Brexit is a mystery to most U.S. investors, not a cause for alarm. Third, nobody knows which side will win – or what it will mean. Would a Brexit be good for Britain? Would it be bad for stocks? Nobody knows! Meanwhile, the Financial Times focuses on “slowing job growth and risk of Brexit…”
  • Jim Sinclair-Next Crash Will Look Like Mad Max
    Renowned gold and financial expert Jim Sinclair says recent dire predictions from Wall Street icons are more than a warning. They are telegraphing their trading positions.  Sinclair explains, “They are preparing for what they believe.  They talk their own positions.  So, it’s more than a warning.  They are telling you exactly what they have done.  They are not out to save the man in the street.  They are out to make money in a huge short position, probably in over-the-counter derivatives. . . . They’re not looking for a market tic down.  They are looking for a market with a character of backing up to an open to an elevator with no elevator there. . . . We’ve got no volume, fake prices, and we’ve got the biggest money in the world short the market. We’ve also got a Fed with no tools, and now we have a Fed whose primary indicator is starting to have a heart attack. . . . When this thing comes down, it’s going to be a free fall.”
  • Puerto Rico Says Talks Cease on Revised Debt Exchange Offers
    Puerto Rico said confidential talks with some bondholders ended without any agreements to reduce its debt as the island edges closer toward what may be its biggest default yet. The disclosure from the commonwealth came 10 days before $2 billion of interest and principal is due on a variety of securities, which Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla has said the island can’t pay in full. The focus now turns to the U.S. Senate, which may take up a bill next week to establish an oversight board that would restructure Puerto Rico’s $70 billion in debt. “The assumption here has to be simply that everybody thinks they’re going to get a better deal from the oversight board than they are negotiating with each other,” said Phil Fischer, head of municipal research at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in New York. “Everyone is preparing the book for the next trade, and the next trade is with the oversight board.”
  • Solving Italy’s $408 Billion Bad Loan Problem 30 Cents At a Time
    It will only cost 30 cents to solve Italy’s bad debt problem — 30 cents in every euro of the country’s 360 billion-euro ($408 billion) pile of loans past due, that is. That’s the difference between what Italian banks think their non-performing loans are worth and what investors are willing to pay for them. Reconciling these disparate valuations is key to clearing the gridlock in the European Union’s fourth-largest economy. Morgan Stanley’s Srikanth Sankaran says current prices on secured NPLs, i.e. those backed by collateral such as real estate, are between 20 to 30 cents on the euro, while unsecured loans can attract prices as low as 5 cents. Meanwhile, banks are marking the loans on their books for sale at around 50 to 65 cents, he said.
  • Deutsche Bank’s advice to ‘invest in UK if Leave wins ballot’ after EU referendum
    ONE of Europe’s biggest banks yesterday advised investing in UK companies in the event of Brexit because they would “outperform the European market”. Analysts at Deutsche Bank say a vote to leave the EU would cause panic on Europe’s stock markets in the weeks after June 23, causing them to fall by as much as 10 per cent. But the FTSE 100 will perform better, boosted by a weak pound. A note from the bank reads the UK stock market “tends to outperform during periods of GBP (pound) weakness”. It said the value of the pound could tumble by as much as another 5 per cent by the end of the year.
  • ‘Brexit’ could send shock waves across U.S. and global economy
    Britain’s departure from the European Union could send shock waves across the global economy and threaten more than a trillion dollars in investment and trade with the United States. International policymakers are ramping up their warnings of the dangers of a British exit – popularly known as “Brexit” — from the political and economic alliance that has united Europe for the past four decades. Voters in Britain will decide whether to leave or remain in the European Union in a referendum on Thursday, but financial market volatility has already spiked as polls show a growing desire to abandon the partnership.
  • The man who accurately predicted 4 market crashes told us 3 more dates to worry about this year
    The man who accurately predicted four market crashes to the exact date each time has told Business Insider about three more dates to worry about. Sandy Jadeja is a technical analyst and chief market strategist at Core Spreads. Technical analysts look at charts to pinpoint patterns in various markets and asset classes. From that, they forecast which direction prices are likely to move in. They can’t tell you the reasons why there will be a big market movement, only that there is going to be one. He now warns that the following dates spell trouble for the Dow Jones in the US that could spread to other markets. 1. Between August 26 and August 30, 2016. 2. September 26, 2016. 3. October 20, 2016. “We have interesting times ahead of us. We are dealing with issues on so many levels from economic uncertainty in the financial markets including currencies and commodities as well as the rising house prices we have seen,” said Jadeja in an interview.
  • Venezuela police arrest 400 for looting in food shortage
    At least 400 people have been arrested in Venezuela after rioting and looting over food shortages. Over 100 shops in the coastal town of Cumana were hit and at least one person died according to local media. Venezuela has one of the world’s highest inflation rates at 180% and people can queue for hours for subsidised food. Opposition politicians blame government mismanagement for the shortages. But the government says the shortages are part of an economic war being waged to drive President Nicolas Maduro from office.
  • China Dumping More Than Treasuries as U.S. Stocks Join Fire Sale
    For the past year, Chinese selling of Treasuries has vexed investors and served as a gauge of the health of the world’s second-largest economy. The People’s Bank of China, owner of the world’s biggest foreign-exchange reserves, burnt through 20 percent of its war chest since 2014, dumping about $250 billion of U.S. government debt and using the funds to support the yuan and stem capital outflows. While China’s sales of Treasuries have slowed, its holdings of U.S. equities are now showing steep declines. The nation’s stash of American stocks sank about $126 billion, or 38 percent, from the end of July through March, to $201 billion, Treasury Department data show. That far outpaces selling by investors globally in that span — total foreign ownership fell just 9 percent. Meanwhile, China’s U.S. government-bond stockpile was relatively stable, dropping roughly $26 billion, or just 2 percent.
  • Why US Coal Production Collapsed to Lowest Level since 1981
    It was called “king coal” because it ruled! Coal-fired power plants were the cheapest way to generate electricity, based on capital costs and operating costs. And the US has plenty of coal. In the 1980s, over 55% of electricity generation was coal-fired. By 2000, it was down to 50%. Now it’s down to just over 30%, in second place, for the first time ever, behind natural gas. In the first quarter of 2016, according to the US Energy Information Administration, coal production plunged 17% from the prior quarter, the largest quarterly drop since Q4 1984. At 173 million short tons (MMst), production was down 42% from its peak in Q3 2008. It was the lowest quarterly production since Q2 1981 when a strike crippled coal mines. But this time, there was no strike.
  • Brexit Chaos to Serve as Cover for ECB Bank Bailouts
    Over the course of the last few months, Brexit has become one of the biggest catch-all preemptive scapegoats of recorded human history. Even far beyond the old continent’s porous borders, politicians, central bankers, and economists are warning their respective populations to brace for a serious aftershock if the people of Britain vote to leave the EU. This is is a remarkable feat given that the UK has its own perfectly functioning currency, and as such decoupling from the EU, while bumpy, should not pose an immediate financial threat either to the UK or the EU, let alone the world at large. But try telling that to the eurocrats, politicians, and central bankers whose long cherished dream of creating a seamlessly interconnected, interdependent European superstate appears to be in the process of unraveling.
  • How the Government Hides Inflation, as Housing Costs Soar
    For inflation lovers, the headline numbers that the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today was benign: The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.2% in May, seasonally adjusted. Over the last 12 months, not seasonally adjusted, the index rose 1.0%. The Atlanta Fed’s “sticky-price” CPI – “a weighted basket of items that change price relatively slowly,” as it says – wasn’t quite that benign. It rose 2.6% for the 12-month period, the hottest increase since April 2009!
  • All Signs Point to Big Financial Crash in 2016-Bill Holter
    Financial writer Bill Holter says there are many signs that are signaling big trouble. Holter’s list starts with the troubled banking giant Deutsche Bank and says it is his top candidate for the next Lehman style financial meltdown.  Holter explains, “It would make sense that they are the candidate because, as you know, they had a recent settlement in the gold and silver fix.  So, they may get thrown under the bus.  The only problem is if they get thrown under the bus, there’s going to be a bomb that blows up the whole bus.” So, can we make it out of this year without a big financial crash? Holter contends, “I don’t see how.  There is the potential unrest all over the world.  You have “Brexit,” and now the polls are saying that’s going to happen.  That’s going to absolutely dislocate Europe.  You have the U.S. election, and no matter who wins, I would say there are going to be riots.  There will be riots no matter if Hillary wins or Trump wins.  You will probably see rioting going into the election.  You also have the tragic event in Orlando, and it’s common knowledge that ISIS says it is going to be doing this all summer long.  So, you got all kinds of potential dislocations.  I don’t see how we get to next year with the can being kicked down the road.”
  • Right Now It’s About Keeping the Whole System from Collapsing-Andy Hoffman
    Financial writer Andy Hoffman says the real endgame is upon us, and big money people like “Bond King” Bill Gross know it. Hoffman explains, “He has said some pretty alarming things that are pretty well in line with what all the other ‘big money,’ . . . people have has been saying lately.  We’re talking about the biggest debt explosion in history on top of the already biggest debt edifice in history.  He also is  . . . talking about Japan’s endgame is to forgive their debt.  Forgive means default.  It means the collapse of the major Western currencies.  It means the domino game, that started 40 years ago when they got rid of the gold standard, must end as all fiat currency standards end in shambles.”
  • Peter Schiff Issues a Rather Large Economic Warning… “It’s Gonna Be Awful”
    The interview below is vintage Schiff vs. CNBC. After being “demoted” to only doing CNBC website interviews for the last several months, something Peter hasn’t been too shy about mentioning in other interviews, within the first 22 seconds Peter manages to sneak in a jab about finally being IN studio again, jokes about how his competition at CNBC aren’t really full fledged bears, but rather “little cubs that haven’t matured into full grown bears yet,” and when asked how bad he thinks the coming financial crisis will be, Schiff responds saying, “It’s gonna be awful,” all while he’s laughing.
  • The Stock Market Crash Of 2016: Stocks Have Already Crashed In 6 Of The World’s 8 Largest Economies
    Over the past 12 months, stock market investors around the planet have lost trillions of dollars.  Since this time last June, stocks have crashed in 6 of the world’s 8 largest economies, and stocks in the other two are down as well.  The charts that you are about to see are absolutely stunning, and they are clear evidence that a new global financial crisis has already begun.  Of course it is true that we are still in the early chapters of this new crisis and that there is much, much more damage to be done, but let us not minimize the carnage that we have already witnessed. In general, there have been three major waves of financial panic over the past 12 months.  Late last August we saw the biggest financial shaking since the financial crisis of 2008, then in January and February there was an even bigger shaking, and now a third “wave” has begun in June.  Not all areas around the globe have been affected equally by each wave, but without a doubt this new financial crisis is a global phenomenon. The charts that I am about to show you come from Trading Economics.  It is an absolutely indispensable website that is packed full of useful data, and I encourage everyone to check it out. Let’s talk about China first.  The Chinese economy is the second largest on the entire planet, and since this time last year Chinese stocks are down an astounding 40 percent…
  • The Federal Reserve has brought back “taxation without representation”
    In February 1768, a revolutionary article entitled “No taxation without representation” was published London Magazine. The article was a re-print of an impassioned speech made by Lord Camden arguing in parliament against Britain’s oppressive tax policies in the American colonies. Britain had been milking the colonists like medieval serfs. And the idea of ‘no taxation without representation’ was revolutionary, of course, because it became a rallying cry for the American Revolution. The idea was simple: colonists had no elected officials representing their interests in the British government, therefore they were being taxed without their consent. To the colonists, this was tantamount to robbery. Thomas Jefferson even included “imposing taxes without our consent” on the long list of grievances claimed against Great Britain in the Declaration of Independence. It was enough of a reason to go to war.
  • The subprime mortgage is back: it’s 2008 all over again
    Apparently the biggest banks in the US didn’t learn their lesson the first time around… Because a few days ago, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and many of the usual suspects made a stunning announcement that they would start making crappy subprime loans once again! I’m sure you remember how this all blew up back in 2008. Banks spent years making the most insane loans imaginable, giving no-money-down mortgages to people with bad credit, and intentionally doing almost zero due diligence on their borrowers. With the infamous “stated income” loans, a borrower could qualify for a loan by simply writing down his/her income on the loan application, without having to show any proof whatsoever. Fraud was rampant. If you wanted to qualify for a $500,000 mortgage, all you had to do was tell your banker that you made $1 million per year. Simple. They didn’t ask, and you didn’t have to prove it. Fast forward eight years and the banks are dusting off the old playbook once again.
  • China’s Jan-May outbound direct investment surges
    Chinese companies continued to invest big in the overseas market in the first five months of the year, official data showed on Wednesday. China’s non-financial outbound direct investment (ODI) rose 61.9 per cent from a year earlier to 479 billion yuan ($74 billion) in January-May period, the Ministry of Commerce said on its website. Major investment destinations included ASEAN, Australia, the EU, Hong Kong SAR, Japan, Russia and the United States, which together were in receipt of $59 billion, about four fifth of the total. China had sent 181,000 labourers to work abroad since the start of the year, bringing the total number of Chinese labourers overseas to 987,000 at the end of May, down 20,000 from the same period last year. Chinese outbound direct investment will continue to grow at more than 10 percent per annum, a report from international accounting firm KPMG showed earlier this year.
  • China, Russia elected to UN’s ECOSOC
    China and Russia have been elected to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the coordinating body for the economic and social work of UN agencies and funds. China won 182 votes out of a total of 185 votes casted in the Asia Pacific group in the election held on Tuesday. Other elected ECOSOC members are North Korea, Britain, United Arab Emirates, Sweden and Norway among others. ECOSOC accredits and oversees human rights groups at the UN, deciding who can participate at the UN Human Rights Council. The winners require two thirds majority of the votes in relevant groups.
  • Faber: Brexit Would be The Best Thing in British History
    The European Union is an “empire that is hugely bureaucratic,” warns Marc Faber, telling CNBC that he thinks that “a Brexit would be bullish for global economic growth,” because “it would give other countries incentive to leave the badly organized EU.” The Gloom, Boom & Doom-er explained that Brexit is a risk Britain should be willing to take, and that it would not be a disaster, “on the contrary, it would be the best thing for Britain that would ever happen!” As CNBC reports, Faber defended his case by citing Switzerland, which is not a member of the EU nor the European Economic Area, but instead operates in the “single” market. That enables the Swiss to have rights in the U.K., but theoretically allows them to operate independently of both groups.
  • Authoritarian Control and Mass Murder in America the Hegelian Dialectic Way
    Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) was a highly influential German philosopher. To this day his Hegelian Dialectic is a model used by central powers of government to create a problem that causes a reaction most often in the form of a crisis or series of crises, and consolidation of concentrated power results in fewer hands as a consequence of the proposed solution put forth by the same political body that created the problem and crises in the first place. It’s been a highly effective deadly game formula of deceit that the ruling elite has perpetrated on the people to fool and entice them into blindly accepting greater centralized control and authority. This article will demonstrate how New World Order globalists and their neocon puppets in Washington have consistently employed this repeating cycle of the Hegelian Dialectic consisting of the problem (originally called thesis), reaction (anti-thesis) and solution (synthesis) during this century’s federal governmental domestic policies. Inasmuch as US Empire virtually controls all Western nations as well as nearly all Third World nations, this insidious undemocratic process is unfolding globally on the geopolitical chessboard with the ultimate objective of establishing one world government tyranny.
  • Morgan Stanley fears policy makers repeating mistakes of 1930s
    Policy makers are repeating the types of mistakes that prolonged the Great Depression, economists at Morgan Stanley warned Thursday. High debt, deflation, slower growth and lower yields on top of policy missteps have often been identified as the prime culprits for extending the Great Depression in the 1930s. “We think that the current macroeconomic environment has a number of significant similarities with the 1930s,” said a team led by Chetan Ahya, global co-head of economics at the firm.
  • Why there’s a new kind of housing crisis
    America has a housing crisis, and most Americans want policy action to address it. That’s the conclusion of an annual survey released Thursday by the MacArthur Foundation. The “crisis” is no longer defined by the layers of distress left behind after the subprime bubble burst, but about access to stable, affordable housing.
  • U.S. bank earnings will feel bite of U.K. exit from EU
    Earnings of large U.S. banks would be trimmed by as much as 5.6% this year and as much as 9% in 2017 if the U.K. opts to leave the European Union in a referendum to be held next week, analysts at brokerage Keefe, Bruyette & Woods said. The banks most exposed to an increase in costs and weaker capital market activity as a result of the so-called “Brexit” include Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Citigroup Inc. and Bank of America Corp. BAC, said KBW analyst Brian Kleinhanzl and team in a note dated Wednesday and distributed to media on Thursday.
  • How Fascism Comes to America
    I think there are really only two good reasons for having a significant amount of money: To maintain a high standard of living and to ensure your personal freedom. There are other, lesser reasons, of course, including: to prove you can do it, to compensate for failings in other things, to impress others, to leave a legacy, to help perpetuate your genes, or maybe because you just can’t think of something better to do with your time. But I’ll put aside those lesser motives, which I tend to view as psychological foibles. Basically, money gives you the freedom to do what you’d like – and when, how, and with whom you prefer to do it. Money allows you to have things and do things and can even assist you to be something you want to be. Unfortunately, money is a chimera in today’s world and will wind up savaging billions in the years to come.
  • Wall Street has been rocked by an $8 billion hedge fund’s implosion
    Visium Asset Management, a multibillion-dollar hedge fund, has imploded in the biggest scandal to hit the industry in years. The fund told investors of its plan to close in a letter Friday. It’s the most high-profile shutdown since authorities forced Steve Cohen’s controversial SAC Capital to close in 2013. A slew of factors — from a brewing insider-trading scandal to a contentious investment by Visium’s founder that rankled investors and staffers alike — led to Visium’s demise. On top of all of that, Visium’s flagship fund had been reporting dismal performance. Visium is selling one of its better performing funds to AllianceBernstein, it said.
  • Iranian Professor: ‘OPEC Is Finished’
    An Iranian professor said Tuesday that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is doomed, because of power struggles between Iran and Saudi Arabia that have created serious political fallout. “OPEC’s power is not waning — I’m sorry, OPEC is finished,” Hossein Askari, an Iranian professor of business at George Washington University who studies the oil industry, told USA Today. “OPEC is just powerless. They cannot agree to anything, both for political reasons and economic realities.”
  • Bill Gross: Negative yields are a $10 trillion ‘supernova’ that will ‘explode’
    Bond guru Bill Gross believes the growing global move toward negative yields will have dire consequences. In a tweet from his firm, Janus Capital, Gross goes back half a millennium to assert that the current situation with the world’s debt market is unprecedented and dangerous: ‘Gross: Global yields lowest in 500 years of recorded history. $10 trillion of neg. rate bonds. This is a supernova that will explode one day’. The warning comes as yields on Japanese government bonds and German bunds hit record lows.
  • $30 oil could come back later this year
    The oil crash is over, right? Maybe not. At least that’s the warning from Morgan Stanley, which argues crude oil prices could spiral downward later this year to as low as $30 a barrel. It’s a counterintuitive warning, given that oil prices have actually soared by nearly 100% since mid-February. But Morgan Stanley points out that the huge rally has been driven largely by unexpected supply outages in Nigeria, Canada and elsewhere, all of which won’t last forever.
  • Bilderberg Group 2016: attendee list and agenda
    The secretive Bilderberg Group, which is set to meet in Dresden, Germany later this week, will discuss how to prevent Donald Trump from becoming president, the possibility of mass riots as a result of wealth inequality, the migrant crisis, as well as the United Kingdom’s vote on leaving the European Union. The influential meeting of bankers, politicians, media heads and business moguls has released its official participant list and agenda for 2016.
  • Former head of Morgan Stanley indicted for evading $45 million in taxes
    Morris Zukerman spent 16 years at Morgan Stanley, at various points overseeing its energy and merchant banking practices, before starting his own investment firm in the late 1980s. His firm’s partners have included ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil and Kinder Morgan. He endowed a Harvard sociology professorship. He collected dozens of expensive paintings, including works he loaned to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Along the way, he evaded more than $45 million in taxes, the U.S. now alleges.
  • $50 Oil Might Not Last to the End of 2016
    Hold off on celebrating the recent surges to more than $50 per barrel in WTI and Brent crude prices. First, consider what’s behind the increase. The simplest explanation is that supply disruption is to blame. In the past few weeks, the world has experienced a bevy of supply disruptions.
  • IEA says supply glut will remain until 2021
    The International Energy Agency says they are decreasing gas demands once again. Although oil markets are hopeful to a rebalance next year, the surplus will not disappear right away. They report that an annual increase in global consumption is expected to rise by 1.5 percent through 2021, down from the original of 2 percent prediction and the 2.5 percent gain over years past. This growth inhibition is driven by the low usage of fuel in the U.S. and Japan as it competes with renewable coal in power generation. They continue, “Slower generation growth, rock-bottom coal prices and robust deployment of renewables constrain gas’s ability to grow faster in today’s low-price environment.”
  • What happens after Brexit?
    When it comes to “Plan B” Europe is funny: it never has one. The best example is, of course, Greece most notably from an April 2013 press conference, when Mario Draghi responded to a question from Zero Hedge readers about a worst case scenario for Greece.
  • The Daily Data Dive: A Tale of 3 Retail Sales Figures And A 12.5% Drop Since 2007
    The Commerce Department reported that the seasonally adjusted headline number for Retail Sales rose in May by an estimated 0.5%. That figure will be revised multiple times in the months and years ahead as more data comes in and the seasonal adjustment factor is repeatedly revised until its curve reasonably approximates the actual data. In the game of Pin the Tail on The Number, Wall Street economists undershot, coming in with a consensus guess of +0.3%. The reported number was a “beat” in that regard. The actual, not seasonally adjusted number rose by $20.5 billion or 4.5% from April. The best way to tell if that’s a good number or not is to compare it with May’s performance last year. May of 2015 saw a month to month gain of $27.4 billion or 6.1%. Compared to last year, this year fell short.
  • Meltdown! Central Banks Are Destroying The Global Bond Market
    Japanese, German and Swiss bond yields fell to records, as government debt around the world extended its best gains in two decades, with the prospect of Britain leaving the European Union boosting demand for havens. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen fueled the rally by saying Wednesday slow productivity growth and aging societies may keep interest rates at depressed levels. Fewer Fed officials expect the central bank to raise interest rates more than once this year than they did three months ago, based on projections the central bank issued. The Bank of Japan said inflation in the nation may be zero or negative, while holding monetary policy unchanged.
  • GOLDMAN SACHS: This is how far we expect the pound to crash after a Brexit
    Brexit could trigger a huge sell-off in the pound, sending the currency down by as much as 11% against a basket of the world’s most important currencies, according to new research from Goldman Sachs released late on Wednesday. Goldman analysts Silvia Ardagna, Robin Brooks, and Michael Cahill argue that a so-called “Lehman-type” scenario — where uncertainty in the markets increases as much as it did following the collapse of the investment bank Lehman Brothers in 2008 — would cause a huge crash in the pound sending it down to levels not seen in decades.
  • After Brexit—-There’s Grexit, Spexit, Uscitaly and Portugal, Too
    If there was any doubt that Brexit was “relevant” then the surges in European peripheral bond risk,despite massive bond-buying by The ECB, should send shivers up and down the status quo huggers that are shrugging the referendum decision off because “central banks will provide liquidity.” However, it’s not just The UK that EU officials need to worry about, as The Globalist notes, Germany will have to change its policies if it wants to avoid exit of other countries from the eurozone. Portugal, Italy, and Spain are all seeing bond risk explode in recent weeks…
  • Will Brexit Give The US Negative Interest Rates?
    One of the oddest things in this increasingly odd world is the spread of negative interest rates everywhere but here. Why, when the dollar is generally seen as the premier safe haven currency, would Japan and much of Europe have government bonds — and some corporate bonds — trading with negative yields while arguably-safer US Treasuries are positive across the entire yield curve? One answer is that the Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank are buying up all the high-quality (and increasing amounts of low-quality) debt in their territories, thus forcing down rates, while the US Fed has stopped its own bond buying program. So the supply of Treasury paper dwarfs that of German or Japanese sovereign debt. Greater supply equals lower price, and lower price equals higher yield. The other answer is that this is just one of those periodic anomalies that persist for a while and then get arbitraged away. And Brexit might be the catalyst for that phase change.
  • The pound is getting annihilated
    Sterling is getting crushed once again on Thursday, as currency traders react to ever increasing odds that the UK will vote to leave the European Union as well as renewed warnings from the Bank of England about the dangers of Brexit. Around 3:45 p.m. BST (10:45 a.m. ET) the pound is lower by around 1.37% against the dollar to trade at $1.4014, having tumbled steadily for around two hours in the early afternoon, as Brexit jitters intensify in the markets.
  • Gold Price: USD 65,000/OZ In 5 Years?
    16 June 2021 is five years from today. What will the gold price be 16 June 2021? Currencies are Worthless. As the world’s fiat paper currencies have lost 99% or more of their purchasing power in the last 100 years, we have to understand that fiat paper currencies are not a suitable unit of account to accurately measure prices. Gold is in fact a much better measuring stick for value than paper currencies. A currency doesn’t measure anything. It just has an arbitrary value placed upon it by the population using it. It’s not backed by anything and it can fail at any time. By the tale of history, we know that the unbacked fiat paper currencies used today will ultimately destruct and become worthless. All unbacked fiat currencies throughout human mankind have failed. A more accurate measurement is to measure fiat currencies in gold. If we look at the US Dollar as measured in gold, we can see that the US Dollar has utterly failed in keeping its store of value, with the value plunging about 98% in a mere 50 years.
  • Free Speech Under Attack
    Bill Bonner, whose Diaries we republish here, is well-known for being an equal opportunity offender  – meaning that political affiliation, gender, age, or any other defining characteristics won’t save worthy targets from getting offended. As far as we are concerned, we generally try not to be unnecessarily rude to people, but occasionally giving offense is not exactly beneath us either. Some people really deserve it, after all, …which is why we often refer to modern-day central bankers as lunatics, politicians as psychopaths, governments as gangs  of highway robbers waving a flag, and so forth. On one occasion we even provided a translation of Mr. Böhmermann’s “abusive criticism” of Mr. Erdogan, which fell afoul of a 19th century lèse majesté law on Germany’s statute books.
  • How Fiat Money Destroys Culture
    It may seem unusual that an economist would talk about culture. Usually, we talk about prices and production, quantities produced, employment, the structure of production, scarce resources, and entrepreneurship. But there are certain things that economists can say about the culture, and more precisely, that economists can say about the transformation of the culture. So what is culture? Well, to put it simply, it is the way we do things. This can include the way we eat — whether or not we dine with family members on a regular basis, for example — how we sleep, and how we use automobiles or other modes of transportation. And of course, the way we produce, consume, or accumulate capital are important aspects of the culture as well.
  • Oil Is Set To Rally Beyond $50
    This week’s key data for the oil and gas industry shows a small rebound in U.S. oil production after months of declines. While U.S. crude stocks continue to fall, we notice a small build in gasoline stocks as refinery runs continue to increase.
  • Weak Indian Demand May Soon Impact Gold Prices
    Incredible numbers this week on gold demand. Coming out of a nation that’s supposed to be the world’s top consumer — but is showing hardly any buying right now. India. Preliminary reports suggest that May was another very weak month for India’s gold demand. With Bloomberg citing familiar persons in the finance ministry as saying that May’s gold imports totaled just 31 tonnes — a drop of 51 percent from year-ago levels. That would come after India’s gold imports dropped 67 percent in April — to just 22 tonnes. Showing that gold buying is incredibly sluggish right now. In fact, sources in India’s jewelry sector were quoted as saying that there is “hardly any demand” right now in this key consuming nation. A fact that seems incredible in light of the recent strength in the gold price.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

Latest News Articles – June 16, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From June 10, 2016 to June 16, 2016:

  • June 23, 2016: The Brexit Vote Could Change EVERYTHING And Plunge Europe Into Financial Chaos
    On June 23rd, a vote will be held in the United Kingdom to determine if Britain will stay in the European Union or not.  This is most commonly known as the “Brexit” vote, and that term was created by combining the words “Britain” and “exit”.  If the UK votes to stay in the European Union, things over in Europe will continue on pretty much as they have been.  But if the UK votes to leave, it will likely throw the entire continent into a state of economic and financial chaos.  And considering how bad the European economy is already, this could be the trigger that plunges Europe into a full-blown depression. So if things will likely be much worse in the short-term if Britain leaves the EU, then it makes sense for everyone to vote to stay, right? Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple.  Because this choice is not about short-term economics.  Rather, the choice is about long-term freedom. The EU is a horribly anti-democratic bureaucratic monstrosity that is suffocating the life out of most of Europe a little bit more with each passing year.  So if I was British, I would most definitely be voting to leave the EU.
  • Halliburton & Baker Hughes get downgraded: Moody’s
    Following the failed merger of Baker Hughes and Halliburton, Moody’s has made the decision to downgrade both companies’ credit ratings. Halliburton and Baker Hughes had their senior unsecured debt downgraded from A2 to Baa1. Halliburton announced that they planned to acquire Baker Hughes back in November of 2014, and HAL, therefore, took on much debt in order to finance the acquisition. Moody’s Vice President, Andrew Brooks, stated that “Debt incurred to finance its failed bid to acquire Baker Hughes Incorporated together with the negative impact on profitability and cash flow of the very weak oilfield services environment have eroded HAL’s credit metrics to levels which no longer support its A2 rating.”
  • 15 Facts About The Imploding U.S. Economy That The Mainstream Media Doesn’t Want You To See
    You are about to see undeniable evidence that the U.S. economy has been slowing down for quite some time.  And it is vital that we focus on the facts, because all over the Internet you are going to find lots and lots of people that have opinions about what is going on with the economy.  And of course the mainstream media is always trying to spin things to make Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton look good, because those that work in the mainstream media are far more liberal than the American population as a whole.  It is true that I also have my own opinions, but as an attorney I learned that opinions are not any good unless you have facts to back them up.  So please allow me a few moments to share with you evidence that clearly demonstrates that we have already entered a major economic slowdown.
  • Where Do Matters Stand? — Paul Craig Roberts
    On the eve of World War II the United States was still mired in the Great Depression and found itself facing war on two fronts with Japan and Germany. However bleak the outlook, it was nothing compared to the outlook today. Has anyone in Washington, the presstitute Western media, the EU, or NATO ever considered the consequences of constant military and propaganda provocations against Russia? Is there anyone in any responsible position anywhere in the Western world who has enough sense to ask: “What if the Russians believe us? What if we convince Russia that we are going to attack her?” The same can be asked about China.
  • BRICS Bank inks strategic cooperation deal with China Construction Bank
    The New Development Bank (NDB) launched by the BRICS countries on Wednesday signed a strategic cooperation agreement with China Construction Bank, the country’s second-largest lender. “The NDB, as per its mandate, is building partnerships with major banks in its member countries. Cooperation with CCB is important for us, given the key role it plays in infrastructure financing,” said NDB President Kundapur Vaman Kamath in an emailed statement to The BRICS Post. “The MoU signed today will provide our two institutions with a framework for collaboration in several areas including bond issuance, joint financing and information exchange. I look forward to a long and mutually beneficial partnership,” Kamath added. The China Construction Bank is planning to support the BRICS Bank with adequate credit lines and a commitment to invest in the new lender’s first financial green bonds. The BRICS bank has said clean energy will be part of its core focus.
  • It’s 2000 All Over Again!
    At this year’s Strategic Investment Conference, my good friend Mark Yusko poured cold water on whatever bullishly warm feelings the most optimistic folks may have clung to. You might think someone who manages real money would have a more enlightened view than those bearish economists. Mark, however, was hardly bullish. He listed ten plausible scenarios that could send markets down to the basement. Here I’ll focus on his “Surprise #6: Déjà vu, Welcome to #2000.2.0.”  That’s right: Mark says it’s year 2000 all over again. That was when the tech bubble popped and sent us to an ugly bear market and recession. Here are four major parallels he pointed out that make it clear we are heading for another ugly recession—or are already in one without realizing it.
  • How a summer of shocks threatens to bring mayhem to the markets
    Two words are back on the lips of every investor in the City. “Event risk” has begun to dominate trading floor conversations, as a slew of central bank decisions, legal rulings, and political upheavals threaten to bring an end to the calm that has descended upon the markets. May is the one calm month we have before a pretty volatile JuneMarchel Alexandrovich. After a brief break from the turbulence that dominated the start of the year, when fears over the strength of the global economy and the idea of a sharp slowdown in China unnerved money managers, volatility is set to return to the scene.
  • Eurozone banks hit by bad debts
    Investment in the eurozone remains far below pre-crisis levels, partly due to problems in the banks, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has said. Bad debts at the banks are making them less willing to lend. The OECD says many legacies of the area’s financial crisis are unresolved and major new problems have emerged.
  • Libya claims $1.2bn damages from Goldman Sachs over trades
    Libya’s $67bn national investment fund is seeking damages from Goldman Sachs, saying the bank encouraged it to make complex, money-losing investments. The Libyan Investment Authority, which runs the fund, is looking to claw back $1.2bn (£840m) it says was lost through nine disputed trades conducted in 2008. The Libyans said the trades were made under “undue influence”. Goldman said the claims were without merit and it would fight them vigorously. The trial started on Monday at the High Court in London.
  • Why are so many bankers committing suicide?
    Three bankers in New York, London and Siena, Italy, died within 17 months of each other in 2013-14 in what authorities deemed a series of unrelated suicides. But in each case, the victim had a connection to a burgeoning global banking scandal, leaving more questions than answers as to the circumstances surrounding their deaths. The March 6, 2013, death of David Rossi — a 51-year-old communications director at Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the world’s oldest bank — came as the institution teetered on the brink of collapse. Rossi was found dead in an alleyway beneath his third-floor office window in the 14th-century palazzo that served as the bank’s headquarters. A devastating security video shows Rossi landing on the pavement on his back, facing the building — an odd position more likely to occur when a body is pushed from a window.
  • Chart of the Decade: European Banks Fleeing German Banks Like Rats From A Sinking Ship
    Smaller banks often deposit funds in bigger banks. The level of banks’ deposits at other banks is a reflection of their confidence in the system as a whole. The ECB measures and is kind enough to share with us the level of bank deposits in other banks in Europe, breaking the data down by country and the Eurozone as a whole. Banks have been pulling their money out of other banks in Europe like rats deserting a sinking ship since 2012. Even the advent of QE in 2014 only slowed the stampede. European banks are still gettin’ out of Dodge.
  • Bogle Says Prepare for Stocks, Bonds to Miss Historical Returns
    John Bogle, the founder of Vanguard Group Inc., said investors should prepare for weaker results than stock and bond markets generated during his six-plus decades in money management. The average annual return has been around 12 percent for stocks and 5 percent for bonds during his career, Bogle, 87, said Wednesday in an interview with Bloomberg Radio. “That is not going to be true in the future,” he said. “It’s reasonable to think that stocks might return 4 to 5 percent in the next decade.” A bond portfolio, including corporate debt, could produce a yield of about 2.5 percent, he said.
  • The Land Below Zero: Where Negative Interest Rates Are Normal
    In Copenhagen, bicycles take undisputed priority over cars and even pedestrians. A sizzling restaurant scene has made foodie fetishes of moss, live ants, and sea cucumbers. Despite a minimum wage not far below $20 an hour and some of the world’s steepest taxes, unemployment is almost the lowest in Europe. Parents happily leave infants unattended in strollers on the sidewalk while they stop in to cafes. Clearly the usual rules tend not to apply in Denmark. So it’s no surprise that the country in recent years has added a major new entry to its sprawling repertoire of eccentricities: Since 2012 it’s been a place where you can get paid to borrow money and charged to save it. Scandinavia’s third-largest economy (the population is 5 million, and there are about as many bikes) is deep into an unprecedented experiment with negative interest rates, a monetary policy tool once viewed by mainstream economists as approaching apostasy, if not a virtual impossibility. Companies—though not yet individuals—are paying lenders for the privilege of keeping funds on deposit; homeowners, in some cases, are actually making money on mortgages.
  • There Have Almost Never Been This Many Global Stocks in Decline
    Fear of a possible Brexit is being manifested in equities around the world. The Bloomberg composite referendum poll tracker shows that in recent days, the share of the electorate who would vote to leave the E.U. has pulled ahead of the percentage who would vote to remain. Amid the evidence that the “Leave” camp is gaining support, global equities have come under acute pressure, with the MSCI All World Index giving back more than 4 percent over the four sessions through Tuesday. What’s startling about this particular pullback is how the number of stocks that are rising was, at the time of yesterday’s close, absolutely dwarfed by the amount in decline, observe analysts at Bespoke Investment Group.
  • S. Africa Gets Reprieve From Junk as S&P Keeps Rating Unchanged
    South Africa got a reprieve from a junk credit rating as S&P Global Ratings warned it could cut the nation’s debt assessment if the economy doesn’t recover. The foreign-currency rating was kept at BBB-, one level above junk, and the local-currency rating was affirmed at BBB+, S&P said in a statement on Friday. The outlook on the rating was kept at negative. The rating affirmation keeps South Africa on the same level as India and Italy. “South Africa’s weak economic growth, relative to that of peers in similar wealth categories, continues to be hurt by a combination of factors,” S&P said. The negative outlook signals “that we could lower our ratings on South Africa this year or next if policy measures do not turn the economy around,” it said. While the nation maintained its investment grade for now, economic growth forecast at the slowest pace since the 2009 recession will keep pressure on the rating. A downgrade to junk for Africa’s most-industrialized economy could prompt forced selling by some funds that are prevented by their mandate from owning junk-rated securities.
  • Gerald Celente – The Next 8 Days May Change The World Forever
    Today top trends forecaster Gerald Celente just that the next 8 days may change the world forever. Gerald Celente:  Direct Democracy referendums, a staple in Switzerland – one of the wealthiest, most democratic, least violent, most market-oriented countries in the world – in which the public, not politicians, vote on high-profile issues… has gone British… Next Thursday, United Kingdom citizens will vote whether to stay in or exit (Brexit) the European Union. In the run-up to the referendum, world equity markets swoon and sway with polls that fluctuate between “Remain” or “Leave.”
  • Brazil’s Exploding Debt-to-GDP Is Going to Become a Problem Soon
    Reining in Brazil’s mammoth budget is no small feat, no matter how good you are. Cut discretionary spending, and risk blowback from an already frustrated electorate. Raise taxes, you could exacerbate the nation’s crushing recession. Privatize government companies? Beware the wrath of the unions. Shrink social security? It’ll take decades to manifest itself on the nation’s balance sheet. And that doesn’t even start to address Brazil’s massive interest tab. That’s the harsh reality facing Acting President Michel Temer, 75, who took over three weeks ago for Dilma Rousseff as she awaits an impeachment trial. His economic cabinet — dubbed the “dream team” by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. — takes over a crisis-torn country with a public-sector debt burden that climbed 9 percentage points last year alone to 67 percent of gross domestic product. And liabilities keep mounting fast. The budget gap is now the biggest among all countries in the G-20 except Saudi Arabia, equal to more than 10 percent of GDP.
  • National Bank profit falls 48% on bad energy loans; boosts dividend
    National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) has delivered quarterly results that look ugly but invite observers to look ahead to better times later this year. The smallest of the Big Six reported that its second-quarter profit fell to $210-million, down 48 per cent from last year. That’s the ugly part, and it stands out from the far-more encouraging results from the other big banks this quarter. The decline was expected though, after the bank announced last month that it would set aside $250-million to cover bad loans to the energy sector. Overall, provision for credit losses came to $317-million, giving National Bank the opportunity to construct two what-if scenarios that can make its results look considerably more upbeat.
  • The Federal Reserve Has Created an Unprecedented Disaster for Pension Funds
    When it comes to the Fed, Congress is mired in hypocrisy. The anti-regulation, de-regulation crowd on Capitol Hill shuts its mouth when it comes to the most powerful regulators of all – you and the Federal Reserve. Meanwhile, Congress goes along with the out-of-control, private government of the Fed—unaccountable to the national legislature. Moreover, your massive monetary injections scarcely led to any jobs on the ground, other than stock and bond processors.
  • Next Banking Scandal Explodes in Spain
    The last five years have been a bumper period for banking scams and scandals in crisis-ridden Spain. From Bankia’s doomed IPO in 2012 to the “misselling” of complex preferentes shares to “unsophisticated” retail bank customers, including children and Alzheimers sufferers, all of the scandals have had one thing in common: the banks have consistently and ruthlessly sacrificed the welfare and wealth of customers, investors, and taxpayers on the altar of short-term survival. Some commentators claim that the problem of banking instability in Spain has been put to rest in recent times, thanks chiefly to a robust, debt-fueled recovery, a tepid resurgence of the real estate sector and the transfer of the most toxic assets from banks’ balance sheets to the festering balance sheets of the nation’s bad bank, Sareb. They could not be more wrong. Despite the untold billions of euros of public funds lavished on “cleaning up” their balance sheets and the roughly €240 billion of provisions booked against bad debt since December 2007, the banks are just as weak and disaster-prone as they were four years ago.
  • Negative rates stir bank mutiny
    Lenders in Europe and Japan are rebelling against their central banks’ negative interest rate policies, with one big German group going so far as to weigh storing excess deposits in vaults. The move by Commerzbank to consider stashing cash in costly deposit boxes instead of keeping it with the European Central Bank came at the same time as Tokyo’s biggest financial group warned it was poised to quit the 22-member club of primary dealers for Japanese sovereign debt. The ECB and the Bank of Japan have for months imposed negative rates for holding bank deposits in an attempt to push lenders to deploy their cash in the real economy through more aggressive lending to businesses. The policy in effect taxes banks for storing excess liquidity.
  • ECB Gets Clocked by the Two Biggest German Banks
    On the fateful day of June 8, when the ECB began buying euro-denominated corporate bonds, some of which now trade in negative-yield absurdity, the two biggest German banks counter-attacked in a well-coordinated two-pronged move. Commerzbank, of which the German government owns nearly 16% as a consequence of the bailout during the Financial Crisis, leaked to Reuters with impeccable timing that it was considering hoarding tons (literally) of cash in its vaults rather than paying the punishment interest on deposits at the ECB. That “punishment interest,” as Germans call the negative interest the ECB charges for deposits, is -0.4%. Currently, Eurozone banks have €850 billion on deposit at the ECB, so the punishment interest would cost them €3.4 billion per year.
  • “Death of the Dollar” Not Yet
    Our favorite death-of-the-dollar gurus will have to remain patient for a while longer, it appears. Not that they don’t have plenty of reasons to be confident. But right now, the much maligned dollar is hot – on every level! With its top two competitors – the euro and the yen – now mired in negative-yield absurdity, investors are fleeing to greener pastures where yields are still higher. And the greenest pasture of them all with the most liquid government bond market is the US. Foreign demand at the 10-year Treasury auction on Wednesday hit a record high of 73.6%, beating the prior all-time record of 73.5% in May. And they sold at a yield of 1.702%!
  • Four alternatives to holding your savings in a bank
    “Global yields lowest in 500 years of recorded history. $10 trillion of neg. rate bonds. This is a supernova that will explode one day.” Those were the words of famed bond fund manager Bill Gross. (Gross was actually the first portfolio manager inducted into the Fixed Income Analyst Society’s “Hall of Fame”. And yes, there really is a hall of fame for that.) Gross wrote that more than $10 trillion in government bonds actually have NEGATIVE yields, and that interest rates are at the lowest levels in financial history. For example, the British government just issued its lowest-yielding bonds since 1694. This has very dangerous implications.
  • Introducing Europe’s Frightening New Tax Directive
    A few days ago, the European Commission released details of a tax directive that will create a pan-European tax system, complete with a brand new Tax ID number for all the good citizens of Europe. The proposal also aims to increase taxes across the board if they feel that a member state (like Ireland) doesn’t charge enough tax. According to the proposal, other European countries like Ireland and Estonia “distort competition by granting favourable tax arrangements.” Apparently it’s not ‘fair’ that high-tax France and Belgium have to compete with low-tax Ireland and Estonia. So rather than the bankrupt countries getting their act together to attract business, the solution is to penalize everyone and make the entire continent less attractive. It’s genius! The directive goes on to demand more onerous reporting, attack anyone who takes legal steps to reduce what they owe, and even threaten businesses with exit taxes if they try to leave Europe. This really is like a return to the feudal system.
  • John Hathaway – There Is A Deepening Shortage Of Physical Gold
    On the heels of gold and silver moving higher along with the dollar and the Dow tumbling, here is a reminder from one of the greats in the business, John Hathaway, that discusses the deepening shortage of physical gold. John Hathaway: “According to the World Gold Council, the current investment allocation of world institutional portfolios to gold is a miniscule .55 percent. The flows resulting from a return of investment interest in gold for hedging purposes only, and in the best of all possible worlds (robust economic growth, world peace, etc.), would seem to have a potentially powerful impact on gold prices.”
  • FTSE Loses £30bn In Value As Brexit Fears Grow
    The FTSE 100 slumped below the 6,000 threshold for the first time in four months on Tuesday, as growing concern about the EU referendum caused jitters in global markets. More than £30bn was wiped off the index as it finished a fourth session in negative territory, following further opinion polls which indicate strong support for Brexit and The Sun’s decision to throw its support behind the Out campaign. In London, the FTSE fell 2% to close at 5924 – and other European markets also ended the day in the red, including the CAC 40 in France and Germany’s DAX. The STOXX 600, a pan-European index, has lost 8% since the start of June, wiping off €600bn (£475bn) off the value of its constituents.
  • A Trip Down The Rabbit Hole Of Money Dropping Helicopters, Followed By Debt Repudiation
    Today one of the greats in the business has given King World News permission to share a crucial piece of information with our global audience.  This piece takes a trip down the rabbit hole of money dropping helicopters, followed by debt repudiation. Bill Fleckenstein: It is worth noting, however, that today is a bit of a red-letter day in the annals of monetary experimentation because it marks the beginning of Mario Draghi’s and the ECB’s buying of corporate bonds as part of their roughly 80-billion-euro-per-month (i.e., over $90 billion) monetization scheme…
  • George Soros Is Preparing For Economic Collapse – Does He Know Something That You Don’t?
    Why is George Soros selling stocks, buying gold and making “a series of big, bearish investments”?  If things stay relatively stable like they are right now, these moves will likely cost George Soros a tremendous amount of money.  But if a major financial crisis is imminent, he stands to make obscene returns.  So does George Soros know something that the rest of us do not?  Could it be possible that he has spent too much time reading websites such as The Economic Collapse Blog?  What are we to make of all of this? The recent trading moves that Soros has made are so big and so bearish that they have even gotten the attention of the Wall Street Journal…
  • Top Advisor To Sovereign Wealth Funds Warns Another Lehman Moment Is Coming As Gold & Silver Surge!
    With Wall Street having one of the strangest years in 2016, today a top advisor to the most prominent sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds, and institutional funds in the world, warned King World News that another Lehman moment is coming.  He also discussed what this will mean for major markets and he exposed what will be the trigger for gold and silver to skyrocket. Michael Belkin:  “The world is changing.  What’s happening economically in Europe is we have extremely weak banks.  Let me give you two names, UniCredit and Deutsche Bank.  I’m telling my clients to sell and short those stocks.  UniCredit is one of the biggest, if not the biggest Italian bank.  It has a huge balance sheet, not enough capital, and huge non-performing loans (20 percent).  The stock is down about 50 percent on the year and they are gasping for air.
  • Something Big That Always Happens Right Before The Official Start Of A Recession Has Just Happened
    What you are about to see is major confirmation that a new economic downturn has already begun.  Last Friday, the government released the worst jobs report in six years, and that has a lot of people really freaked out.  But when you really start digging into those numbers, you quickly find that things are even worse than most analysts are suggesting.  In particular, the number of temporary jobs in the United States has started to decline significantly after peaking last December.  Why this is so important is because the number of temporary jobs started to decline precipitously right before the last two recessions as well.
  • Global markets rattled as Brexit gains traction
    Jitters over the coming EU referendum have wiped £67bn off of the FTSE 100 in the past three days, amid signs that support for Brexit has risen to the strongest levels on record. Concerns over a leave vote pushed London’s leading index down by 1.2pc, to a three-month low of 6,044.97, as nerves about the repercussions of a withdrawal from the EU sent shockwaves through global equity markets. European stocks were left battered, with the Euro Stoxx 50 shedding nearly 2pc. Worries about the global economy, in part fuelled by the belief that a Brexit vote could destabilise the wider eurozone bloc, also dampened investors’ appetites for US stocks. The flagship S&P 500 index closed down more than 0.8pc as traders fled for the perceived safety of government bonds and gold.
  • Was The Gotthard Base Tunnel Opening Ceremony An Illuminati Ritual Intended To Honor Satan?
    The opening ceremony of the Gotthard Base Tunnel in Switzerland featured a “goat-man” that dies, is resurrected, is worshipped and is crowned as “the king of the world”.  The “goat-man” that played such a key role in this performance bore a striking resemblance to Baphomet, which in recent decades has become one of the key symbols used to represent Satan in the occult community.  So could it be possible that this entire ceremony was actually an Illuminati ritual that was intended to honor Satan?  Don’t pass judgment until you see the videos. On Wednesday, June 1st, the long-awaited opening ceremony of the Gotthard Base Tunnel in Switzerland finally took place.  It is the longest and the deepest railroad tunnel in the entire world, and it took 17 years to build.  It is 35 miles long, more than 2,000 meters deep in places, and the construction of this unprecedented tunnel cost a grand total of more than 11 billion euros. So the opening of this tunnel was quite a big deal over in Europe.  Prominent European politicians such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and French President Francois Hollande were all in attendance, and they were treated to an incredibly bizarre opening ceremony that cost approximately 8 million euros to produce.  From Switzerland, this opening ceremony was broadcast by television all over the world, and so countless numbers of people were exposed to it.
  • Why Is The Weather So Crazy All Of A Sudden?
    All over the planet, global weather patterns have gone completely nuts.  Just over the past few days we have seen “life threatening” heatwaves, extremely dangerous wildfires, vicious tornadoes and unprecedented flooding – and that is just in the United States.  And of course this is just the continuation of a trend that stretches back to last year, when extremely weird weather created “apocalyptic-like conditions” in many areas around the world.  So why is this happening?  For decades, we could count on weather patterns falling within fairly predictable parameters, but now that is completely changing all of a sudden.  All over the globe we are seeing things happen that we have never seen happen before, and the weather just seems to get even more crazy with each passing month.
  • George Soros Sells America Short – Literally
    The Wall Street Journal reported on its front page this morning that leftist billionaire and Democratic mega-donor George Soros, the convicted insider trader who “broke the Bank of England,” has stepped back into trading personally in recent months. The Journal reports that Soros is betting against America, adopting “bearish derivative positions that serve as wagers against U.S. stocks.” It is not clear at what point in the first quarter the firm took those positions; the S&P 500 was up 3% on the quarter, so Soros may be in the red so far, according to the Journal report. But on May 16, Soros’ fund disclosed that it had doubled its bet against American stocks.
  • The Woman who Discovered $200 MILLION missing from E.U. Accounts
    Marta Andreasen was hired as the EU’s first proper chief accountant in 2002. She was in charge of 130 staff and, surprisingly, was the first properly qualified accountant to hold the post.  She did her job correctly – and in no time at all, identified that £170 million was missing or unaccounted for in the E.U. budget – that’s more than $200 million!  The corrupt E.U. immediately slapped her with a disciplinary charge for “defamation” and she was suspended from her job.
  • Fed’s Yellen sees rate hikes ahead, but few hints on when
    Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen on Monday gave a largely upbeat assessment of the U.S. economic outlook and said interest rate hikes are coming but, in an omission that stood out to some investors, gave little sense of when. Overall, Yellen said, “I see good reasons to expect that the positive forces supporting employment growth and higher inflation will continue to outweigh the negative ones.” While last month’s jobs report, released Friday, was “disappointing,” and bears watching, policymakers will respond “only to the extent that we determine or come to the view that the data is meaningful in terms of changing our view of the medium- and longer-term economic outlook.”
  • The Fed’s credibility gap is getting wider
    If Fed policy was a fairy tale, the title might be “The Central Bank That Cried Wolf.” Investors have watched in bemusement as Fed officials throughout the past several years have warned that policy would change, only to back down at the slightest sign of turbulence. It now appears the market is no longer taking the Fed’s threats seriously. In a speech Monday, Fed Chair Janet Yellen gave only modest signals that she was reconsidering policy, which just a few months ago was geared for as many as four interest rate increases this year. Nevertheless, a market bracing for a high likelihood of a summer hike now is considering that “we may well not see one,” said David Rosenberg, chief economist and strategist at wealth management firm Gluskin Sheff.
  • Half Of Washington DC Employers Have Cut Jobs, Hours Due To Minimum Wage Increases – And It’s Going To Get Worse
    As former McDonald’s CEO Ed Rensi so eloquently explained not long ago, raising the minimum wage would wipe out thousands of entry level jobs for those who don’t have very many other options. Washington, DC is validation of Rensi’s theory. According to a report from the Employment Policies Institute, nearly half of Washington, DC employers said they have either laid off employees or reduced the hours of employees to adapt to the District of Columbia’s minimum wage hikes since 2014.
  • Weak Jobs, Consumer Activity Hint at Weakening American Economy
    A disappointing increase in job openings and a poor increase in consumer credit indicate Americans are increasingly struggling to make ends meet.  In April, consumer credit rose just $13.4 billion, far below the $18 billion expected and less than half of March’s $28.4 billion, according to new data released by the Federal Reserve. Analyst expectations of sharply increasing consumer credit usage were based on previous data that showed strong retail sales, which is often financed by credit cards.
  • Wholesale Inventories Rise Most In 10 Months, Sales Miss; Ratio Only Higher Post-Lehman
    Wholesale inventories rose more than expected in April (up 0.6% MoM vs 0.1% exp) – the biggest monthly jump in 10 months – but sales disappointed (rising only 1.0% versus a 1.1% expectation). This sales growth topping inventory growth is a positive but for context the inventory-to-sales ratio remains at 1.35x – the highest level ex-Lehman on record. They just keep building inventories… even as sales remain lower YoY…
  • Urban Outfitters (URBN) Stock Plunges in After-Hours Trading on Q2 Sales Trend
    Urban Outfitters (URBN) stock is falling by 7.84% to $25.74 in after-hours trading on Thursday, after the apparel retailer announced its comparable store sales are declining in the fiscal 2017 second quarter, which ends next month. “Thus far during the second quarter of fiscal 2017, comparable retail segment net sales are mid single-digit negative,” the company said its quarterly report filed with the SEC. If trends continue through the quarter, comparable store sales would decline, compared with a 4% increase for the same quarter last year and a 1% increase for the fiscal 2017 first quarter ended April 30.
  • Venezuela announces new plan to tackle food crisis
    The Venezuelan government says it has imported thousands of tons of basic foodstuffs and will begin distributing them through communal councils directly to family homes. In Caracas the Food Minister, Rodolfo Marco Torres, said 70% of the country’s food would be supplied in this way. The Venezuelan opposition says the new system could discriminate against them. The country has been badly hit by the fall in oil prices and is suffering severe shortages in food and medicines. President Nicolas Maduro has accused private food production companies and supermarkets of hoarding food for speculation. Mr Torres said the government had purchased 115,000 tons of basic goods including rice, sugar, maize and beans.
  • Bond markets hit by economic worries
    The returns on British and German government debt, or bonds, have hit new all-time lows. The market has been affected by concerns about the global economic outlook. Weaker economic performance usually leads to cuts in interest rates and bond yields tend to move down in parallel. An increasing number of government bonds are now giving negative returns, less than zero. These moves have highlighted a question that is increasingly being asked in the markets: Is the world heading for another financial crisis, this time in the market for government and company debt? The new records being hit by government bonds are the results of central bank policies of very low or even negative interest rates.
  • Grains Decline as U.S. Sees Global Supply Exceeding Estimates
    Grain prices dropped in Chicago after the U.S. government said that supplies will be bigger than analysts expected. World wheat inventories in the 2015-16 season will reach 243 million metric tons, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday in a report. That compares with analyst projections at 242.5 million, on average. Global corn reserves will be 206.5 million tons, topping the 205.5 million estimate.
  • The Pension Bubble: How The Defaults Will Occur – Peter Diekmeyer
    Experts worry about stock, bond and real estate market excesses. But a bubble is forming that dwarfs them all: in pension plans. Millions of Americans and Canadians who are counting on pension benefits to fund their retirements risk being severely disappointed. The hard money community has, of course, been aware of this for some time. However in recent years, even the elites have been taking notice. One such group, the International Forum of the Americas, will be holding its fourth annual pension conference in Montreal next Monday. There politicians, financiers and monetary policy officials will discuss the declining rates of return in public and private sector pension plans. The picture they will paint is increasingly grim.
  • Wall Street’s Treasuries Market Bluff Exposed in Auction Retreat
    When U.S. officials broached the question of more oversight in Treasuries this year, Wall Street pushed back by pointedly reminding them of the “critical role” it plays in ensuring America’s ability to borrow. Turns out, the firms might be overstating their influence. Banks known as primary dealers, which trade directly with the Federal Reserve and bid at U.S. debt auctions, have bought just 30 percent of the new securities this year, the smallest share on record, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The 23 firms — which include JPMorgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Deutsche Bank AG — also aren’t bidding as aggressively as they once did.
  • A ‘tsunami’ is about to overwhelm the debt market
    A tidal wave may be coming to the bond market, and it’s not going to be pretty. At least that’s the view of Matthew Mish, credit strategist at UBS. To Mish, the elevated rates of default in the commodity sector and high risk bonds are a harbinger of things to come for the broader debt market. “First, our quantitative framework is signaling a broader deterioration in the default outlook, with our model projecting default rates of 4.3% over the next 12 months (versus 2.6% one year prior),” Mish wrote in a note to clients on Thursday.
  • New Reasons to Worry About Europe’s Banks
    European banks have lost their mojo. A toxic combination of negative interest rates, comatose economies and a regulatory backdrop that might euphemistically be described as challenging is wreaking havoc with bank business models. Their collective market value has dropped by a quarter so far this year. The smoke signals emanating from the European Central Bank in recent weeks suggest regulators aren’t blind to this. Daniele Nouy, who chairs the ECB’s bank supervisory board, said earlier this week that the central bank “is aware that the low-interest-rate environment is putting pressure on the profitability of European banks.” Regulators may respond by going easier when drafting new rules.
  • China’s Debt Load Is (Much) Higher Than Previously Thought, Goldman Says
    Count total social financing (TSF) as another Chinese statistic of increasingly dubious value, according to analysts at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. With many investors grappling to understand the degree to which China’s economic growth has been fueled by debt, efforts to get a grip on measures of new credit creation have gained fresh urgency. To date, many have relied on the TSF invented by the Chinese authorities in 2011 as a way of capturing a larger slice of the country’s shadow banking activity, but Goldman analysts led by M.K. Tang cast fresh doubt, in a note published on Wednesday, on the measure’s ability to gauge credit creation.
  • Pensions may be cut to ‘virtually nothing’ for 407,000 people
    One of the biggest private pension funds in the country is almost out of money, and fresh out of options. The Central States Pension Fund has no new plan to avoid insolvency, fund director Thomas Nyhan said this week. Without government funding, the fund will run out of money in 10 years, he said. At that time, pension benefits for about 407,000 people could be reduced to “virtually nothing,” he told workers and retirees in a letter sent Friday. In a last-ditch effort, the Central States Pension Plan sought government approval to partially reduce the pensions of 115,000 retirees and the future benefits for 155,000 current workers. The proposed cuts were steep, as much as 60% for some, but it wasn’t enough. Earlier this month, the Treasury Department rejected the plan because it found that it would not actually head off insolvency. The fund could submit a new plan, but decided this week that there’s no other way to successfully save the fund and comply with the law. The cuts needed would be too severe.
  • Jerome Kerviel, rogue trader, wins unfair dismissal case
    The French ex-trader Jerome Kerviel, whose unauthorised transactions lost his bank €4.9bn (£3.82bn), has won a claim for unfair dismissal. A labour court said the bank, Societe Generale, had dismissed him not because of his actions, which it must have known of, but for their consequences. The court ordered the bank to pay him €450,000 (£350,000) in damages. A lawyer for the bank said it would be appealing a “scandalous” decision that ran counter to the law. Mr Kerviel, 39, served a three-year jail term after being convicted of breach of trust and fraud in October 2010. He was charged with gambling €50bn (£39bn) of Societe Generale’s money on trades without the bank’s knowledge, which nearly brought down the business.
  • Here’s How George Soros’s Latest Predictions Have Played Out
    George Soros, the 85-year-old billionaire who broke the Bank of England in 1992, is becoming more involved in day-to-day trading at his family office, taking a series of big, bearish bets. Soros is best known for netting $1 billion as a hedge fund manager decades ago when he and his then-chief strategist Stan Druckenmiller wagered that the U.K. would be forced to devalue the pound. His predictions haven’t always played out so well. Anticipating weakness in various global markets, his Soros Fund Management cut its publicly disclosed U.S. stock holdings by 37 percent in the first quarter while buying shares of gold miners and an exchange-traded fund tracking the price of the precious metal. Since then, the S&P 500 Index has returned 3.1 percent. Barrick Gold Corp., his largest new position disclosed in the quarter, fared better, jumping 44 percent.
  • Puerto Rico’s Bonds Rally as House Nears Passage of Rescue Plan
    Puerto Rico bonds are staging the longest rally in six months with the U.S. House of Representatives poised to vote on legislation to help resolve the island’s $70 billion debt crisis. The prices of some securities rose Thursday amid speculation that the House will approve a bill, known as Promesa, that empowers a federal control board to monitor the U.S. territory’s budgets and oversee any debt restructurings. The gains came after an index of Puerto Rico debt climbed for eight straight days through Wednesday, the longest winning streak since November, S&P Dow Jones indices show.
  • US warns of hacking threat to interbank payment network
    US regulators have warned banks about potential cyber attacks linked to the interbank messaging system. The statement came two weeks after the Federal Bureau of Investigations sent a notice cautioning US banks after the hacking of Bangladesh’s central bank. The FBI message warned of a “malicious cyber group” that had already targeted foreign banks. In February, hackers stole $81m (£56m) from Bangladesh’s account with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The hackers used the Bangladesh central bank’s Swift credentials to transfer money to accounts in the Philippines. Swift is the system banks use to exchange messages and transfer requests. The hackers attempted to steal nearly $1bn, but several of their requests were rejected because of irregularities.
  • Chinese police require DNA for passports in Xinjiang
    Police in China’s north-western region of Xinjiang are asking some residents to provide DNA samples and other biological data when applying for travel documents. People in the multi-ethnic area of Yili will have to provide the samples before being allowed to go abroad. The Chinese government is trying to crack down on periodic violence, which it blames on Islamist militants. Many Muslims in Xinjiang say they are discriminated against. They say the Chinese authorities often refuse to issue documents allowing them to travel. Most of the Uighur ethnic minority, which makes up about 45% of Xinjiang’s population, practise the Muslim faith. Over the years China’s authorities have attributed violent attacks to Uighur militants, who they say are inspired or aided by overseas terror groups. Uighur leaders have denied being behind the violence.
  • Compare The Contrast Of Censored Images Showing Socialist Country Where The Elite Thrive, The Poor Starve
    Most of us have seen the heartbreaking images and videos flowing out of Venezuela where food lines are hours long, basics like bread are unattainable for many and recent reports showing Venezuelans are so hungry and desperate they are hunting dogs, cats and pigeons, but that is only half the story. Due to government corruption, there are “two Venezuelas,” one where the poor are having their electricity and food rationed by the government, causing civil unrest and bringing the country to the brink of civil war, but the other “country within the country” is living high drinking champagne and vodka, eating Belgian chocolates and lobster, wearing brand name clothes, and dining in exclusive restaurants. Via Telesur, a man by the name of Agustin Otxotorena, a Basque executive living in Caracas, grew tired of constant calls from friends and relatives in Spain telling him that there was no food in Venezuela, so on May 20 he began publishing photos on Facebook of supermarkets in upscale sectors of Caracas filled with goods. What you will see below is what the ABC news bureau in Venezuela censors from their reports, images from Otxotorena’s Facebook account which when seen side by side with the tragic images of starving Venezuelans show a sickening contrast between who the government allows to starve and who doesn’t.
  • Saudi Post-Oil Plan Weighs Income Tax on Expat Workers
    Saudi Arabia is considering taxing millions of foreign residents as the kingdom seeks to reduce its reliance on oil revenue after the plunge in crude prices. The proposal was included in the country’s National Transformation Plan, an ambitious multi-year program released this week. But the tax element is only “an initiative that will be discussed,” Finance Minister Ibrahim al-Assaf said on Tuesday at a news conference in Jeddah. Economists said the proposal is unlikely to see the light soon because it could hamper the kingdom’s ability to attract the foreign investment it needs to revive growth hit by the oil slump. Still, raising the possibility of income tax in the blueprint — even if only on foreigners — shows the readiness of its architect, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, to consider steps that past Saudi rulers have shunned. Prince Mohammed, the king’s son and second-in-line to the throne, has already cut fuel and utility subsidies and proposed reducing the public-sector wage bill. The kingdom is also joining other members of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council in imposing value-added taxation starting from 2018.
  • The Obama Administration Could Cause the Next Big For-Profit College Collapse
    The Obama administration is at risk of repeating the mistakes that led to the expensive collapse of for-profit chain Corinthian Colleges Inc. In that case, the Department of Education failed to address years of allegations that the company’s schools swindled its students and warning signs that Corinthian was facing financial difficulty. When the department finally took action by delaying the delivery of federal student aid to the schools, officials were “surprised” by the cash crunch the delay caused. That set off a series of events that culminated in Corinthian filing for bankruptcy protection less than a year later. The increasing cost to taxpayers of Corinthian’s collapse was at least $90 million as of March.
  • Trail of Defaults Leads to Dark Corner of Tax-Exempt Bond Market
    When Philip J. Kennedy needed financing to buy low-income housing in a wealthy Dallas suburb, he bypassed Texas agencies for a tax-exempt bond issuer 700 miles away in Gulf Breeze, Florida. Leaving the state allowed Kennedy’s non-profit American Opportunity Foundation Inc. to secure $35 million to buy Garden Gate Apartments in Plano, Texas, and a development in Fort Worth without answering questions from local authorities about AOF’s past difficulties repaying debt. Scores of non-profit organizations like AOF are required to use government-created agencies when selling bonds. In return, the agencies charge fees. At times, these conduits aren’t in the same state as the projects they’re financing, giving officials on the ground little incentive to scrutinize the deals.
  • S&P 500 Record Taunts Investors Before Floor Caves In on Friday
    Another run at a record ended in frustration for stock investors as the biggest selloff since mid-May erased gains for the week and dragged the S&P 500 further from a 10-month high. A week that started with the whiff of celebration as equities pulled within 1 percent of their all-time high ended with disappointment amid concerns about global growth and Britain’s referendum on the European Union. The S&P 500 dropped 0.9 percent to 2,096.07 on Friday, its worst decline since May 17, leaving it down 0.2 percent over the five days.
  • Day 8 No Money on EBT Cards – Riots Next? – Get Prepared!
    It interesting over the weekend I got several emails telling me about cell phones being down, internet being down, and get this, EBT cards not working and having no money associated to them. This is a concern because when the US Government has payment failures, then there is possibly something happening that the press is not telling you about. Now, we know that computers have problems and that states, counties and cities run on computers. But what is interesting is that since the beginning of 2016, The US government has had over 2,700 reports on downdetector.com showing that they have been late loading the money onto these EBT cards. Folks, we are now going on 8 days where the Government has not paid the EBT payments so that people have food. Why is this? Are we looking a possible Venezuela event taking place here in the US?
  • Dire Financial Warnings and Debt Jubilee-David Morgan
    Finance and economy writer David Morgan says there has been a noticeable increase in dire warnings from some of the biggest names in the investing world. Why are the elite sounding the alarm on another financial meltdown?  Morgan says, “One reason is they see it’s rather imminent . . . so, could it be this year?  Absolutely.  I have been kind of right and wrong on this.  I am right about the deterioration in the economy, the money supply and the inability to directly address the problem.  Where you pinpoint it is more difficult.  I said 2015 would be the year that most sleepy Americans would wake up and see the economy isn’t really recovering. . . . I think it’s going to be 2016.”
  • Rise in Starving Children Puts Strain on Venezuela’s Hospitals
    The increasing shortage of food and other basic products in Venezuela, on top of inflation, is now takingits toll on the health of the nation — most notably, on its malnourished children. Children frequently arrive to the San Felipe Central Hospital after having fainted from malnourishment, officials told the PanAm Post, and are given medicine to take three times a day. Mothers tell physicians they don’t have enough food in their homes, even after rationing. “Children under five months of age come in here with diarrhea and when the parents are asked what the child has been eating, they say mostly rice cream because they can’t get milk,” one hospital worker said. The same source confirmed parents blame themselves because they don’t have the salary or access to staple foods to improve the situation. “You can’t feed a five-month-old on rice,” the source said, “and it’s going to affect their long-term health.”
  • A Breakdown in Old Rules Leads to a Rethink on How Global Markets Work
    A standard textbook relationship that every student of economics learns in school has been flipped on its head, and it’s leading to a major rethink on the connection between bank balance sheets, exchange rates, global asset prices, and monetary policy. The prices of derivatives used for hedging currency risk are violating no-arbitrage rules, a development that points to a significant decline in global banks’ ability to intermediate capital flows from global investors, in part because of new regulations that have been introduced in recent years. That decline in intermediation capacity appears to have heightened the sensitivity of exchange rates and global asset prices to monetary policy since the crisis, and helps explain some of the unusual gyrations witnessed recently in markets — like extreme moves in the so-called cross-currency basis, which according to traditional theory should be non-existent, and mostly was before the crisis that began in 2007.
  • Whistle-Blower Said to Aid SEC in Deutsche Bank Bond Probe
    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is being helped by a whistle-blower in an investigation of Deutsche Bank AG’s post-crisis mortgage-trading business, according to people with knowledge of the situation. The SEC received a whistle-blower complaint alleging that the bank inflated the value of mortgage bonds on its books and masked losses around 2013, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is confidential. The SEC is probing how the bank valued government-backed mortgage bonds known as Agency pass-through securities that it amassed after the 2007 U.S. housing crisis.
  • Bond yields in UK and Germany fall to record low
    The return on benchmark UK government bonds has fallen to a record low as investors move in to safer assets on concerns about the global economy. The yield on the UK’s 10-year gilt dropped below 1.25% for the first time. The yield on the German equivalent also sank to a record low. More buyers cause bond values to rise and yields to fall, hitting annuity rates, pension fund income, and debts. Analysts see it as a “pessimistic” sign. “The low yield on government bonds paints a pretty pessimistic picture of the global economy, and suggests we are set for an extended period of low or negative inflation, and weak economic performance,” said Hargreaves Lansdown analyst Laith Khalaf.
  • Britain’s property market is going to have a flash crash this summer
    Britain’s property prices are going to fall for the first time since 2012 and London’s house prices will be affected the most, says the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Buyers are cautious due to the uncertainty surrounding the UK’s referendum on European Union membership on June 23. RIC’s chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said in his latest report that the new stamp duty tax imposed by the government on April 1 this year also has some bearing on the lack of demand and therefore the pulldown in prices. But “there is not at this point a sense that a fundamental shift is taking place in the market,” he added, which shows how property prices are likely to experience a flash crash — a short-term burst of cratering prices. This might be a relief for people looking to buy in London as the price drop is going to be the greatest in the capital.
  • EU Referendum … The Plan to DESTROY the UK
    The UK is being set up the final destruction of the NATION STATE! On Thursday 23rd June 2016, the outcome of the EU referendum will be manipulated … but perhaps not in the way many expect! At the recent AV7 Conference, Ian R Crane presented the magnitude of deceit & deception being perpetrated by both UK & EU politicians and names those specifically tasked with bringing about the Final Destruction of ALL European Nation States.
  • The Untold Story Behind Saudi Arabia’s 41-Year U.S. Debt Secret
    Failure was not an option. It was July 1974. A steady predawn drizzle had given way to overcast skies when William Simon, newly appointed U.S. Treasury secretary, and his deputy, Gerry Parsky, stepped onto an 8 a.m. flight from Andrews Air Force Base. On board, the mood was tense. That year, the oil crisis had hit home. An embargo by OPEC’s Arab nations—payback for U.S. military aid to the Israelis during the Yom Kippur War—quadrupled oil prices. Inflation soared, the stock market crashed, and the U.S. economy was in a tailspin.
  • Bank of England in preparations for potential Brexit
    The Bank of England will draw on lessons learned from the Scottish referendum and the global financial crisis as it steps up its preparations for a possible decision by Britain to leave the EU on 23 June. The first of three special funding operations by Threadneedle Street will be launched on 14 June to ensure the UK’s commercial banks have the necessary cash to cope with any turmoil caused by the uncertainty surrounding a Brexit vote. The move would just be the start of action by the Bank, which has drawn up a plan ready for use if necessary on 24 June if the UK votes to leave the EU.
  • Arrant Star Trek Socialism
    In spite of the fact that Marx expressed nothing but disdain for his Utopian socialist predecessors such as Henri Saint-Simon and Auguste Comte, variants of Utopian socialism evidently live on. The latest iteration of the socialist dream is firmly focused on the capabilities of one of the countless fruits of free market capitalism, namely robots. It is quite ironic that something that would never have come into existence in a socialist system is now supposed to hasten the introduction of same – and of course, this time, it will be done right! The idea is basically this: as robots are becoming more sophisticated, more and more labor that is widely regarded as drudgery will become obsolete. Eventually, robots will take over the production of all the goods we need and want, and human workers will be free to pursue art, philosophy, or whatever else strikes their fancy.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

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Latest News Articles – June 9, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From June 3, 2016 to June 9, 2016:

  • 8 Lessons That We Can Learn From The Epic Economic Meltdown In Venezuela
    We are watching an entire nation collapse right in front of our eyes.  As you read this article, there are severe shortages of just about anything you can imagine in Venezuela.  That includes food, toilet paper, medicine, electricity and even Coca-Cola.  All over the country, people are standing in extremely long lines for hours on end just hoping that they will be able to purchase some provisions for their hungry families.  At times when there hasn’t been anything for the people that have waited in those long lines, full-blown riots have broken out.  All of this is happening even though Venezuela has not been hit by a war, a major natural disaster, a terror attack, an EMP burst or any other type of significant “black swan” event.  When debt spirals out of control, currency manipulation goes too far and government interference reaches ridiculous extremes, this is what can happen to an economy.  The following are 8 lessons that we can learn from the epic economic meltdown in Venezuela…
  • US Commercial Bankruptcies Soar (despite Rosy Scenario)
    The post-February euphoria in the US bond market has been a sight to behold, stirred up by NIRP and QE in Japan and the Eurozone. The ECB is beginning to buy corporate bonds, including euro-denominated corporate bonds issued by US companies. This is pushing larger amounts of corporate euro bonds into the negative-yield absurdity. And it has opened all kinds of credit doors in the US. But beneath the market euphoria, reality continues to plod forward. Standard & Poor’s reported that among the companies it rates there were 12 defaults in May, which pushed its speculative-grade corporate default rate up to 4.1%, the highest since December 2010 when it was recovering from the Financial Crisis.
  • Helicopter Money Drops on Europe, But Not for ‘Normal’ Folks
    Money for nothing, for everyone: This is supposedly the next stage of the treatment program for today’s debt-addicted economic system. Milton Friedman’s hypothetical scenario of giving every citizen direct money transfers in a desperate bid to stoke inflation is gaining traction with growing legions of mainstream economists. In their theory-addled brains, a massive one-off injection of central bank-conjured money into people’s bank accounts would do wonders for the real economy — in particular a terminally stagnating one like Europe’s. Rather than creating asset price inflation, as QE has done, it would fuel consumer price inflation. This is seen as the solution to the recently created and now unpayable mountain of debt: the central bank would simply erode it away via inflation.
  • This financial bubble is 8 times bigger than the 2008 subprime crisis
    On July 1, 2005, the Chairman of then President George W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisors told a reporter from CNBC that, “We’ve never had a decline in house prices on a nationwide basis. So, what I think is more likely is that house prices will slow, maybe stabilize, might slow consumption spending a bit. I don’t think it’s gonna drive the economy too far from its full employment path, though.” His name was Ben Bernanke. And within a year he would become Chairman of the Federal Reserve. Of course, we now know that he was dead wrong. The housing market crashed and dragged the US economy with it. And Bernanke spent his entire tenure as Fed chairman dealing with the consequences. One of the chief culprits of this debacle was the collapse of the sub-prime bubble.
  • DEUTSCHE BANK: The ECB is on course to destroy the eurozone
    The European Central Bank risks tearing the eurozone apart for the sake “of short-term financial stability,” and the ECB needs to reverse course before it is too late, says Deutsche Bank. A new note from the bank’s group chief economist, David Folkerts-Landau, says that the ECB has gone badly off course and needs to correct itself before it makes some “catastrophic” mistakes. That correction should come, Deutsche argues, in the form of abandoning the bank’s negative interest rate policy (NIRP) and stopping the mass bond-buying it has undertaken in recent years. President Mario Draghi and other senior staff at the ECB are already causing the central bank to lose credibility in both the markets and with the general public, and is hurting savers, says the bank. Here’s the quote (emphasis ours): Already it is clear that lower and lower interest rates and ever larger purchases are confronting the law of decreasing returns. What is more, the ECB has lost credibility within markets and more worryingly among the public.
  • Andrew Maguire – This Will Send The Price Of Gold Hurtling Into The $1,400s
    On the heels of Friday’s big dollar decline and surge in the price of gold and silver, today whistleblower and London metals trader Andrew Maguire spoke with King World News about what will send the price of gold hurtling into the $1,400s! Andrew Maguire:  “Eric, in my opinion no one knows the true, undiluted supply/demand price of gold.  But what we can be sure of is that is substantially above the current paper price.  Once gold breaks out above $1,308, and large short stops are triggered, I see a very fast move in the $1,400s, which in itself…
  • Japan Is First To Panic; Won’t Be The Last
    The most widely-reported result of the recent G-7 meeting was Japan’s attempt to convince the other major economies to admit that a crisis is imminent and take appropriately radical steps. The response seems to have been a bunch of blank stares. As India’s Business Standard noted: “G7 pact offers minimal cover for Abenomics reset. A Group of Seven compromise offers minimal cover for Shinzo Abe. The Japanese prime minister’s plan to revitalize the world’s third-largest economy needs fresh impetus. Abe didn’t get as much international backing as he might have liked from hosting the rich nations’ club. But, the summit communique can, just about, be spun his way. Abe’s counterparts, understandably, do not share his view that the world risks another Lehman Brothers-style financial crisis. That is important because Abe has inexplicably committed to raising the country’s sales tax next April, a surefire way to choke off recovery – unless a shock of this scale emerges.”
  • What Makes this Jobs Report so Truly Ugly?
    It would have been nice if we’d been correct to the minute, but we were two months early, and therefore wrong, when we wrote on March 30, If This Plays Out, Friday Will Get Ugly. But it did play out today. At the time, we suspected that the March jobs report, released in early April, would be a debacle. We based this on an analysis of the divergence over time between the reports issued by payroll processing company ADP and the jobs reports issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That divergence had been going on for months. Eventually it reverts to the mean. We postulated that March would be that month. Instead, it happened two months behind schedule, so to speak, as today’s jobs report was precisely that sort of debacle.
  • Here’s proof that the US dollar is insanely overvalued
    Shocking. Astonishing. Jaw dropping. There’s just no other way to describe how cheap South Africa is right now. Between the worldwide decline in commodities prices, and a major crisis of confidence in the national government here, the local currency (South African rand) remains at the lowest level it’s been… ever. And that’s made nearly EVERYTHING here dirt cheap if you’re spending foreign currency… especially US dollars. Just doing something simple like eating out at a restaurant or going to the grocery store can be startling. Once you do the math and convert the prices back to US dollars, it almost seems like you’re missing a zero. This also carries over into many asset prices, including certain areas in the property market.
  • Employment Lies — Paul Craig Roberts
    June 3, 2016. Today the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the US economy only created 38,000 new jobs in May and revised down by 59,000 jobs the previously reported gains in March and April. Yet the BLS reported that the unemployment rate fell from 5.0 to 4.7 percent, a figure generally regarded as full employment. The May jobs increase only covers a small fraction of the monthly growth in the labor force and, therefore, cannot account for the drop in unemployment. Moreover, the BLS reported that the labor force participation rate fell by 0.2 percentage points, bringing the decline to 0.4 percentage points over the past two months. Normally, a strong labor market, such as one represented by a 4.7% unemployment rate, causes an increase in the labor force participation rate. The question becomes: How real is the 4.7% rate of unemployment? The answer is: Not at all.
  • Will Silver Outperform Gold? And Why John Hathaway Believes The Gold Price Will Rise
    With continued uncertainty in global markets, many wonder, will silver outperform gold?  Also, why John Hathaway believes the gold price will rise. Japan led world markets lower last night, losing 2%, but that decline, as well as small changes elsewhere, were of no consequence. The early going here saw a modest amount of weakness, but that dip was (again) bought as folks jockeyed for position in front of tomorrow’s nonfarm payroll report. On a related note, the ADP report hit the magic estimated number on the button at 173,000 jobs created…
  • BREAKING: Gerald Celente Just Issued One Of His Most Prescient Trend Alerts Of 2016!
    Today top trends forecaster Gerald Celente just issued one of his most important Trend Alerts of 2016, with exclusive bonus material only available through King World News!  Oil is on a tear. Gold is shining, silver is surging and the dollar is tumbling. Over the last few weeks, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and fellow Fed members bombarded the business media with the refrain that America’s economy was strong, and to expect an interest-rate rise “in the coming months.” The Street bought it and the markets believed it. Gold prices, for example, on a 20 percent upward streak since the new year, sharply dove on the pending interest-rate-hike hype. Since the great criticism from the “investor” world is that gold yields no interest, with interest rates among developed nations in negative or near-low territory, and holding cash yields nothing, holding gold was deemed safer than holding cash. But with the Fed signaling rising rates, that rationale for owning gold no longer held and a selling wave ensued.
  • This Could Soon Lead to the Collapse of the U.S. Dollar
    “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” “Read my lips: no new taxes.” “We were not trading arms for hostages.” Politicians are professional liars. They do it every day. And they usually do it without any consequences. I’d bet that Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan, who told the three lies quoted above, didn’t think twice about them. But the lies would all come back to haunt and humble them. Those words cost Bush senior his reelection. Congress nearly impeached Clinton. And the Iran-Contra scandal forced Reagan to apologize on national TV. The Iran-Contra scandal showed that a strange series of events in a small, obscure, and impoverished country could come back to humiliate the most powerful person in the world.
  • Warren Resources Files For Bankruptcy
    Warren Resources Inc, an energy production company, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Thursday. According to a court filing, the company held operations in both California and Pennsylvania. A major slump in oil prices has pressed a number of energy production companies to file bankruptcy since early 2015. Nearly a third of production companies could be at risk of bankruptcy if prices don’t increase, says one study by the consulting firm, Deloitte.
  • Hercules Offshore files for bankruptcy, again
    After emerging from bankruptcy in November, Hercules Offshore has a plan to sell drilling rigs while filling bankruptcy for the second time since last summer. The demand for their rigs has dropped since the waters have suddenly become overpopulated with drilling equipment. The plan includes slowly halting production by selling the remaining working rigs to pay its shareholders $12.5 million and distribute cash flow from the sales to their creditors. A.P Moeller-Maersk group is interested in their Hercules Highlander, designed for harsh environments. A lot of the older designs rest on the sea floor, making them unable to go deeper than the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Worst Jobs Report In Nearly 6 Years – 102 Million Working Age Americans Do Not Have Jobs
    This is exactly what we have been expecting to happen.  On Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the U.S. economy only added 38,000 jobs in May.  This was way below the 158,000 jobs that analysts were projecting, and it is also way below what is needed just to keep up with population growth.  In addition, the number of jobs created in April was revised down by 37,000 and the number of jobs created in March was revised down by 22,000.  This was the worst jobs report in almost six years, and the consensus on Wall Street is that it was an unmitigated disaster.
  • Barack Obama Warns Americans ‘To Be Prepared For A Disaster’
    When Barack Obama speaks to the public, it is very rare that he does so without a specific purpose in mind.  So why is he urging Americans “to be prepared for a disaster” all of a sudden?  On May 31, Obama took time out of his extremely busy schedule to deliver an address at the FEMA National Response Coordination Center in Washington.  During his speech, he stressed that every American is responsible for preparing for disasters, and that includes “having an evacuation plan” and “having a fully stocked disaster supply kit”.  These are basic steps that I have been encouraging people to do for years, but if they won’t listen to me, perhaps they will listen to the man currently residing in the White House.
  • Dollar Bubble: The Three Reasons The US Dollar Will Soon Crash
    The Dollar Vigilante’s Senior Analyst, Ed Bugos, is a genius… but he’s also somewhat of a recluse. While we have gotten access to his incredible written insights for the last six years in The Dollar Vigilante newsletter, he has always shied away from the public spotlight.  Until now! Ed has decided that we are at such a crucial point in history that he is going to come out of his shell and speak more publicly about the current state of affairs in finance, money and economics. He spoke publicly for the first time at our TDV Internationalization and Investment Summit (you can see all the video presentations here) in Acapulco in February. And, I had the opportunity to sit down with him in Acapulco recently to discuss the three myths about the US dollar that most people don’t realize… yet. In this interview he talks extensively on what the great majority of the market is missing when it comes to the dollar.  He believes the US dollar is currently the biggest bubble in the world and is about to pop.
  • Record Low 4.7% Unemployment Rate Hides Ominous Signs
    The May 2016 unemployment report on the surface sounds like great news.  The unemployment rate dropped to an astoundingly low 4.7%.  This is a -0.3 percentage point drop from last month and a level not seen since November 2007.  Yet the statistics which make up the unemployment rate actually shows something terrible.  The unemployment rate dropped because 664,000 people dropped out of the labor force with almost half a million no longer counted as unemployed.  The labor participation rate dropped by -0.2 percentage points while the civilian participation rate did not change.  One month is not a pattern , yet seeing record low participation rates is not the way to lower the unemployment rate.  Many other economic indicators show a stalled economy and the unemployment appears to be catching up with the other first quarter bad economic news.
  • What the EIA Doesn’t Tell Us When Comparing US Output to that of Russia & Saudi Arabia
    On Monday of last week, the U.S. Energy Information Administration posted an article on their daily blog (Today in Energy) titled “United States remains largest producer of petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbons”..  The article featured a graph of our production of gas and oil vis a vis that of Russia and Saudi Arabia and went on to tell the familiar story about how fracking made it possible for our output of gas and oil to pass that of Russia in 2012, and that, as the headline indicates, we’re still on top.  As the week progressed, copies of the graphic from that post started showing up on other sites around the web, some to highlight the “we’re number one” aspect that it showed, some to disparage the Saudis, who by the looks of that graph, barely come close.
  • Housing Market Hyper-Bubble-Fabian Calvo
    Real estate expert Fabian Calvo says cheap money flooding into the housing market means we are nearing the end of the road for the current housing boom. Calvo explains, “What they have come up with now, through the Obama Administration and many other projects, is they have these down payment assistance programs, which is the federal government giving money to these local agencies.  So, in essence, it is a no-money-down loan to fuel this housing bubble, which is really starting to verge on a ‘hyper-bubble’ like we see in the stock market today.  It’s amazing to see what is happening and see it all repeat again.  It’s going to spill over into this election year, and we will continue to see prices go up.  We have these cheap interest rates and cheap money that has no value that is creating this artificial boom. . . . We are at the last and final stage of this current housing cycle, and that’s where the prices will take off exponentially as will the access to cheap money.”
  • Reporting on Trump Continues to be Unfair, Economy Getting Worse and South China Sea War Drums
    It was trash Trump week as far as the mainstream media (MSM) is concerned. It covered the Trump University lawsuit wall to wall but not a peep about the ongoing criminal investigation on Hillary Clinton and her unprotected private server. One of the big stories ignored this week by the MSM is former Bill Clinton advisor and pollster Doug Schoen penning a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed piece titled “Clinton Might not be the Nominee.” The title says it all, and yet the MSM ignored this huge red flag raised by a top Democratic insider about Hillary Clinton’s viability as a Presidential candidate for the Democratic Party.
  • The Federal Reserve’s $4.3 trillion ticking time bomb
    The Federal Reserve has a big problem if it wants to raise rates again. It will have to pay U.S. and foreign banks enormous sums of money instead of U.S. taxpayers. Not only would the Fed likely draw the ire of Congress, but it could also become a target of the next U.S. president—be it Clinton or Trump. That’s because the gangbuster profits of $90 billion (plus) per year that the Fed remits to the Treasury could easily dwindle to zero. According to several leading economists, it’s also possible that the Fed will become technically insolvent (though it always has the power to print its way out of such a disastrous state).
  • Miami’s Condo Frenzy Ends With Inventory Piling Up in New Towers
    Miami’s crop of new condo towers, built with big deposits from Latin American buyers and lots of marketing glitz, are opening with many owners heading for the exits. A third of the units in some newly built high-rises are back on the market, though most are listed for more than their owners paid in the pre-construction phase. At the current sales pace, it would take 29 months to sell the 3,397 condominiums available in the downtown area, according to South Florida development tracker CraneSpotters.com.
  • How and Why You Should Stop Thinking in Dollars and Start Thinking in Gold
    Whether intuitively or analytically, we all know that the dollar is not such a great form of money. That’s putting it lightly though. The dollar is a terrible form of money when you take a closer look. Those who have lived longer on this earth tend to grasp this reality more clearly. Like trying to walk up a downward-moving escalator, the momentum of a falling dollar is always against you. This becomes clearer when engaging in economic planning. Whether it’s starting a business, making an investment, saving for retirement, putting something away for a rainy day, or simply making ends meet on a week to week basis, all of us have to work against a falling dollar (or fill in the blank with your fiat currency of choice.) If that’s true, why do we keep using it?
  • A Worrisome Pileup of $100 Million Homes
    One of the latest symbols of the overinflated luxury housing market is a pink mansion perched above the Mediterranean on the French Riviera. The 13,000-square-foot property, built and owned by the fashion magnate Pierre Cardin, is composed of giant terra cotta orbs arranged in a sprawling hive. The home’s name befits its price. “Le Palais Bulles,” or “the Bubble Palace,” is being offered for sale at approximately $450 million.
  • China Buying Sparks Bitcoin Surge
    Chinese investors are pumping up bitcoin again, sending prices up nearly 16% in the past four days, just two years after the country was at the center of a boom and bust in the crypto-currency. The four-day surge in bitcoin since Friday has added $1.2 billion in market capitalization for all bitcoin in circulation, according to data from blockchain.info. On Monday, prices moved up as high as $525.49 per bitcoin, though that’s still well below the all-time high of about $1,151 in November 2013.
  • China Is the Biggest Short…Ever!
    Over the next 2 decades, there will be an average of 7.5 million fewer 0-55yr/old Chinese every year vs. an average annual increase of 9.5 million 55+yr/olds. And the wealthy minority of the elderly have stashed their reserves in a whole lot of expensive, vacant real estate that they intend to pass along (rent or sell) to the declining young population. What could go wrong since housing prices only go up…right!?! China, a story of a massive population and population growth. As the adult population growth began to wane, debt was substituted for the waning growth. Population growth turned to outright depopulation among the young, while all remaining population growth was among the “pig through the python” elderly.
  • Personal Spending Spikes Most Since Aug 2009 As Fuel Costs Surge
    Having disappointed in March (just +0.1% MoM), expectations for April’s personal spending were sky high at +0.7% MoM, despite expectations of a 0.4% rise in incomes. Analysts were not disappointed as the headline spending print was a 7-year high +1.0% MoM spike driven by a 3.8% MoM surge in Energy spending. With income rising as expected at 0.4% MoM, and thanks to revisions, the savings rate tumbled to its lowest since 2015. Sustainable? The 2nd biggest spike in spending since 2005…
  • Will You Ever Retire? Many Americans Won’t
    Will you ever retire? More and more Americans will not. According to the latest data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 20% of Americans 65 and older are still working. That’s the largest percentage of older Americans on the job since the early 1960s. With Baby Boomers hitting retirement age, it’s the largest number of Americans over 65 working ever. Surveys indicate a growing number of people plan to continue working past retirement. The number of Americans who said they intend to continue working “as long as possible” came in at 27%. A full 12% said they don’t plan to retire at all.
  • ALERT: Whistleblower Andrew Maguire Says China Just Put A Huge Floor Under The Gold Market
    On the heels of a big dollar decline and surge in the price of gold and silver, today whistleblower and London metals trader Andrew Maguire told King World News that China has just put a huge floor under the gold market! Andrew Maguire:  “China now has gold investors’ backs.  As a key part of its plan, China is building up gold reserves both by way of direct, unreported PBOC (People’s Bank of China) purchases, and much more importantly, openly encouraging citizens to build up their gold investments. I drew attention to a new push by Chinese officials a few weeks back after a contact alerted me to prime time television ads being run in China where the PBOC was openly encouraging its citizens to buy gold.  This is no coincidence (Laughter).  And those ads by the PBOC have been running ever since then. This gold accumulation push is part of a well structured plan by China that will protect its citizens against the inevitable global currency fallout.  China is stealthily winning a financial war against the short-term thinking West.
  • David Stockman: The Next President Will Inherit a Recession
    Over the last few weeks, the mainstream has been fixated on the prospect an interest rate hike. Janet Yellen insists the economic fundamentals will support a hike. Pundits keep talking about a “strong economy.” But David Stockman recently appeared on Fox Business with Neil Cavuto and said the next president will inherit a recession.
  • Consumer confidence lowest since late 2015
    Consumers confidence fell in May to the lowest level since late 2015 as Americans turned slightly more pessimistic about overall business conditions and the job market, a survey shows. The consumer confidence index dropped to 92.6 from a revised 94.7 in April, the nonprofit Conference Board said Tuesday. That’s the lowest level since November and well below the postrecession high of 103.8 set in early 2015. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected the index to increase. Although Americans continue to be cautious about the economy almost seven years into a recovery, their spending habits show that they are somewhat more upbeat than the confidence report suggests. In April, for example, consumer spending rose at the fastest rate since 2009.
  • Dallas Fed manufacturing unexpectedly shrinks in May
    Manufacturing activity in Dallas shrank in May after improving in the prior two months. The index of general business activity fell to -20.8. Economists had forecast an improvement to -8 from -13.9 in April, according to Bloomberg. New orders plunged 20 points after turning positive in the previous month. The gauges of capacity utilization and shipments also fell back below zero.
  • Illinois Budget Debacle Proves Politicians Can’t Fix the Problems They Create
    The US faces a massive debt problem. We all know it. But politicians and government officials are either unwilling or incapable of doing anything about it. David Stockman mentioned the burden of debt in a recent interview with Neil Cavuto on Fox Business: “We have $63 trillion of total debt in this economy. The public sector – county, state, and local – is nearly $25 trillion. And we’re getting old. The Baby Boomers are retiring, 10,000 a day. In another 5 or 10 years we’re going to have a massive increase in the retired population. How do you fund all that? Who’s going to pay the taxes?” Despite the glaring magnitude of the problem, government officials seem content to keep their heads buried in the sand and ignore it until it’s too late. Even when they acknowledge it, they seem utterly incapable of effectively dealing with the issue.
  • Alan Greenspan: “We’re Running To A State Of Disaster”
    Back in March, the former Fed chairman said that we’re in trouble because “productivity is dead in the water, and real capital investment is way below average because business people are very uncertain about the future.” Greenspan went on to add that entitlement programs are crowding out capital investment, and thus crowding out productivity.” Alan Greenspan is back delivering more warnings about the state of the global economy, hammering home the same key points made back in March.
  • More in Debt Than Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands Rejects Rescue
    Congress’s plan to throw a lifeline to Puerto Rico is making waves in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The measure that passed a House committee last week would allow for a federal control board to oversee the finances — and potentially restructure the debt — of any U.S. territory, even though Puerto Rico is the only one now asking for help. Virgin Islands Governor Kenneth Mapp and Rep. Stacey Plaskett have blasted the bill, warning that it may tarnish its standing with investors. That concern is already starting to materialize: Returns on its securities are trailing the $3.7 trillion municipal market for the first time since 2011.
  • Switzerland rejects proposals for unconditional basic income by overwhelming majority
    Switzerland has voted by an overwhelming majority to reject proposals for a universal basic income, according to projections based on a partial count of the vote. Had it passed, anyone legally residing in Switzerland would have received a basic income of 2,500 Swiss Francs (£1,755) every month whether they worked or not. Supporters for the basic income had said that half the work done in Switzerland is unpaid such as housework and care in the community. They stated that such income would help this work become “more valued”. Critics attacked the concept as there was no plan of how to fund the costly policy, something supporters said was the responsibility of the Swiss parliament.
  • The Evidence Is In——-For-Profit College Students Have Huge Debts And Lower Incomes
    Go to college, study hard, get a good paying job – that’s the mantra heard by most students across America as they wind down their high school careers. Intuitively taking out loans just to go to college because everyone says so isn’t a good idea, and a new study by the NBER finds that in fact, students who left for-profit schools during the 2006-2008 timeframe were worse off after attending. A key factor, as the WSJ reports, is that most of these students never earned a degree, they dropped out. Making matters worse, and certainly contributing to the fact that over 40% of student borrowers don’t make payments, is the fact that these students borrowed to attend the colleges.
  • It Starts: Apartment Glut in San Francisco & New York City
    On Wednesday, mega-landlord Equity Residential – which “owns or has investments in 314 properties consisting of 78,351 apartment units” and whose chairman and founder is the ultimate real-estate market timer Sam Zell – warned for the second time since the end of April about apartment rental revenues. This time, it blamed a flood of new supply in two cities – the craziest, most ludicrously priced housing markets in the US: New York and San Francisco. Turns out newly signed leases aren’t meeting expectations in those cities, and they’re dragging down the company’s overall national results.
  • Has Fed Policy Pumped Up Another Real Estate Bubble?
    The more things change, the more they stay the same. After pumping up a real estate bubble in the years leading up to the most recent economic crash, it appears the central bankers and government policymakers may have managed to orchestrate a repeat performance. Real estate mogul Sam Zell appeared on CNBC recently and hinted that a real estate bubble might be about to pop. The chairman of Equity Group Investments and of apartment mega-landlord Equity Residential said the market for apartment and office buildings in some markets have already peaked.
  • US Manufacturing Weakest Since 2009: “No Comfort For Those Looking For A Rebound”
    Following China’s drop, Japan’s plunge, and Brazil’s crash, US Manufacturing PMI slipped once again to 50.7 – its weakest since September 2009 amid ” subdued client demand and heightened economic uncertainty.” New orders bounce is over as it fell to its weakest since Dec 2015 and worse still input costs are surging to 9 month highs as employment suggest payrolls will remain under pressure. ISM Manufacturing data improved marginally – leaving 50% of the last 10 months in contraction and 50% in expansion. The improvement seesm based on a rise in prices paid and customer inventories – hardly a positive sustainable trend. As Markit concludes, “for those looking for a rebound in the economy after the lacklustre start to the year, the deteriorating trend in manufacturing is not going to provide any comfort.” ISM and PMI Manufacturing  indices had recoupled in the last 2 months after ISM’s big plunge.
  • Construction spending plunges 1.8% in April
    Construction spending tumbled in April, due in part to a decline in residential spending, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. The 1.8% decline was well below forecasts of a 0.7% gain from economists polled by MarketWatch. The monthly data followed an upward revision to March data of about 1.5%. Weakness in April was widespread. Residential construction declined 1.5%, while public construction spending fell 2.8%. Outlays for highways were down 6.6%.
  • Fed Beige Book sounds subdued about economy
    A key report about the U.S. economy released Wednesday offered a subdued take, leaving open the question of whether the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates this summer. The Federal Reserve’s Beige Book indicated that most districts were seeing the same “modest” or “moderate” growth through the end of May that has been the hallmark of the unspectacular expansion. One contact in Philadelphia, citing no change in drab, so-so conditions, described activity as “disappointingly stable.”
  • U.S. Auto Sales Took A Nosedive in May
    The U.S. auto industry took a nosedive in May, with General Motors, Ford, and other manufacturers reporting lower U.S. vehicle sales for the month due to weak demand for sedans and fewer selling days. Ford, which on Wednesday reported a 6% drop to 235,997 vehicles from a year earlier, estimated a sales decrease of about 8% for the U.S. industry in May. GM, the largest U.S. automaker, said its sales fell 18% to 240,450 vehicles, a steeper decline than analysts had expected. The sales reports spooked investors who have been on the lookout for weakness in the cyclical auto industry, which has been on an upswing since the Great Recession.
  • Losing Ground In Flyover America——Wanting For Work, Buried In Debt
    The flyover zones of America are wanting for work and buried in debt. That’s the legacy of three decades of Washington/Wall Street Bubble Finance. The latter has exported jobs, crushed the purchasing power of main street wages and showered the bicoastal elites with the windfalls of financialization. The graph below depicts the main street side of this great societal swindle at work. There are currently 126 million prime working age persons in the US between 25 and 54 years of age. That’s up from 121 million at the beginning of 2000. Yet even as this business cycle is rolling over, the 77.1 million employed full-time from that pool is still 1.2 million below its turn of the century level and accounts for only 61% of the population. On top of that, average real hourly wages have fallen by 7% (based on the Flyover CPI), as well. It might be wondered, therefore, as to how real consumption expenditures rose by $3.1 trillion or 38% during the same 16-year period?
  • Since 2014 The US Has Added 455,000 Waiters And Bartenders, And Lost 10,000 Manufacturing Workers
    When Obama made another TV appearance earlier this week, taking credit for the Fed’s reflation of the stock market as somehow indicative of an economic “recovery” (“fiction peddlers” not allowed in the crowd), he once ignore the underlying “facts” behind said recovery: here is another way of showing the unprecedented transformation in the US labor pool: since December 2014, the US has added 455,000 waiters and bartenders, while losing 10,000 manufacturing workers. Behold: “Obama’s recovery.”
  • US created 38,000 jobs in May vs. 162,000 expected
    Job creation tumbled in May, with the economy adding just 38,000 positions, casting doubt on hopes for a stronger economic recovery as well as a Fed rate hike this summer. The Labor Department also reported Friday that the headline unemployment fell to 4.7 percent. That rate does not include those who did not actively look for employment during the month or the underemployed who were working part time for economic reasons. A more encompassing rate that includes those groups held steady at 9.7 percent.
  • Americans Not In The Labor Force Soar To Record 94.7 Million, Surge By 664,000 In One Month
    So much for that much anticipated rebound in the participation rate. After it had managed to rise for 5 months in a row through March, hitting the highest level in one year, the disenchantment with working has returned, and the labor force participation rate promptly slumped in both April and May, sliding 0.4% in the past two months to 62.60%, just shy of its 35 year low of 62.4% hit last October. This can be seen in the surge of Americans who are no longer in the labor force, who spiked by 664,000 in May, hitting an all time high of 94.7 million. As a result of this the US labor force shrank by over 400,000 to 158,466K, down from 158,924K a month ago, and helped the unemployment rate tumble to 4.7%, the lowest level since 2007. Adding the number of unemployed workers to the people not in the labor force, there are now over 102 million Americans who are either unemployment or no longer looking for work.
  • The Biggest Short Ever—-China’s Impaled On An Aging Population, 50 Million Overvalued Empty Apartment Units and Staggering Debt
    As simply put as possible…over the next 2 decades, there will be an average of 7.5 million fewer 0-55yr/old Chinese every year vs. an average annual increase of 9.5 million 55+yr/olds. And the wealthy minority of the elderly have stashed their reserves in a whole lot of expensive, vacant real estate that they intend to pass along (rent or sell) to the declining young population.  What could go wrong since housing prices only go up…right!?!
  • Why Is There Suddenly Such A Huge Push For ‘Mark Of The Beast’ Technology?
    We always knew that it was coming.  All over the world, governments and big corporations are pushing us toward a fundamentally different way of doing things.  They insist that this new way will be more safe, more secure and more efficient.  They are telling us that we should embrace new technology and be open to new ways of buying and selling.  And they assure us that new methods of identification will not be intrusive and will simply allow them to crack down on criminals such as identity thieves, tax evaders and terrorists.  But could it be possible that there is more going on here than we are being told?  Could it be possible that we should actually be highly alarmed by this huge push for “Mark of the Beast” technology?
  • US Services Economy ‘Bounce’ Dies – ISM/PMI Near “Weakest Expansion Since The Recession”
    The brief April bounce in US Services economy has died as PMI slipped back to 51.3 as Markit warns “the service sector reported one of the weakest expansions since the recession.” This weakness was followed by ISM Services which plunged to its lowest since Feb 2014, crushing the hopes of the April bounce. Employment plunged into contraction and New Orders tumbled, with the surveys pointing to GDP growing at an annualised rate of just 0.7-8% in the second quarter. Bye bye April bounce!!
  • Buy Gold for What It Does; Not for Its Price
    Will the Fed raise rates? Will it hold steady? What will the next move mean for gold? Investor and creator of Things that Make You Go Hmmm Grant Williams doesn’t really care. He’s going to buy gold regardless. In fact, during an interview at the Mauldin Strategic Investment Conference, Williams said he doesn’t really pay attention to the price of the yellow metal: “I think what the Fed does could have short-term impact, but I don’t buy gold around it. I don’t buy gold at $1,100 because I think it’s going to $1,200, I buy it for what it does, not what the price is, the price is the last consideration for me.”
  • Fed, again, left with egg on its face as recovery falters
    All that hawkish Fed talk in recent weeks, as well as the market’s knee-jerk reaction, seemed kind of silly after Friday’s dismal jobs report. Expectations for a summer rate hike fell into a sinkhole Friday after the Labor Department reported that nonfarm payrolls grew by just 38,000 in May, amounting to the worst monthly jobs growth in five years. A decline in the unemployment rate to 4.7 percent came only because 664,000 Americans fell out of the workforce.
  • This Is What The Tap Water Looks Like In Venezuela
    One week ago, we showed what the maximum amount of money one can take out of a Venezuela ATM machine looks like: the good news, one still doesn’t need a wheelbarrow to transport it (if only for the time being: with hyperinflation now rampant, it’s only a matter of time); the bad news: this is the equivalent of $25. Now, thanks to AP’s Hannah Dreier, we get a glimpse at the other kind of socialist “liquidity” and step aside Flint, because Caracas has some funky orange stuff flowing out of the tap to offer to those who are thirsty after a day of rioting against a entrenched, dictatorial regime. It appears that Venezuela’s Guri dam, which is so empty it caused the country to give public workers a “five day weekend” as it can’t generate enough electricity to keep the country running, has finally run dry.
  • How a summer of shocks threatens to bring mayhem to the markets
    Two words are back on the lips of every investor in the City. “Event risk” has begun to dominate trading floor conversations, as a slew of central bank decisions, legal rulings, and political upheavals threaten to bring an end to the calm that has descended upon the markets. After a brief break from the turbulence that dominated the start of the year, when fears over the strength of the global economy and the idea of a sharp slowdown in China unnerved money managers, volatility is set to return to the scene. Mellow May is now expected to give way to what industry veterans are already calling “flaming June”, as a calm start to the month is to be followed by shifts throughout currencies, stocks and bonds. Experts say that they expect June to be a “big month” for the markets, and that things are unlikely to settle down any time soon.
  • BHS to close as rescue talks end in failure 
    The battle to save BHS has ended in failure, after administrators concluded no buyer could be found and told 11,000 staff they would be out of work within weeks. It is the biggest collapse in British retail since Woolworths closed its doors in 2008, and the latest sign of a brutal shake-out triggered by the insurgency of online rivals and an influx of more stylish budget fashion brands.
  • Austin Reed To Close All Stores By End Of June
    Austin Reed is to close all 120 of its stores by the end of June, affecting approximately 1,000 staff. Administrators said no viable offers were found for the business, including the store estate. However, five concessions which operate within Boundary Mills outlets, along with Austin Reed’s brand, have been acquired by Edinburgh Woollen Mill. The clothing chain had a rich history, and famous customers in its heyday included Sir Winston Churchill and Elizabeth Taylor. Peter Saville, joint administrator at AlixPartners, said: “We have explored all options to sell the business since our appointment and continued to trade the business with the support of the secured creditors in what is clearly an extremely challenging retail environment.
  • Evidence grows of an end to the house price boom
    Signs of faltering demand in the housing market are prompting estate agents and analysts to suggest England’s house price boom may be ending. Paul Smith, chief executive of the Haart agency — which has more than 100 branches — said: “We believe the nation has now neared the limit in terms of price rises.” Inquiries declined in April at their second-highest rate since 2008, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors — a trend that Mike Prew, equity analyst at investment bank Jefferies, said “signals this slowdown could morph into a period of sustained house price deflation”. Drops in this Rics measure are strongly correlated with price falls about a year later, Mr Prew added.
  • Be Your Own Central Bank And Buy Gold
    Gold is becoming more and more acceptable in the investment community and especially since interest rates have approached zero and in some countries even gone negative. Until recently no portfolio manager would have mentioned gold and even less recommended it. Since the beginning of the year, soon after some called gold just a useless and worthless rock going down to at least $400, a list of hedge fund managers came out with bullish calls for gold and indicated they have been buying. After years of denigrating gold, the investment profession is starting to discover the liquidity trap and acknowledge the value of cash and, more specifically, gold and its place in a diversified portfolio. It remains that gold, as a percentage of global financial assets in 2015, represented only 0.58% vs 2.74% in the ‘80s and 5.00% in the ‘60s.
  • Austerity policies do more harm than good, IMF study concludes
    A strong warning that austerity policies can do more harm than good has been delivered by economists from the International Monetary Fund, in a critique of the neoliberal doctrine that has dominated economics for the past three decades. In an article seized on by Labour’s shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, the IMF economists said rising inequality was bad for growth and that governments should use controls to cope with destabilising capital flows. The IMF team praised some aspects of the liberalising agenda that was ushered in by Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s – such as the expansion of trade and the increase in foreign direct investment. But it said other aspects of the programme had not delivered the expected improvements in economic performance. Looking specifically at removing barriers to flows of capital and plans to strengthen the public finances, the three IMF economists came up with conclusions that contradicted neoliberal theory. “The benefits in terms of increased growth seem fairly difficult to establish when looking at a broad group of countries,” they said.
  • Young people now more likely to live with parents than partners
    For the first time in modern history, more 18-to-34-year-olds live with their parents than in any other living arrangement, according to a Pew Research Center report released Tuesday. In 2014, nearly one-third of young adults lived in their parents’ home, a bigger group than those living with a spouse or romantic partner, living alone or with roommates, or living as single parents. While millennials moving back with their parents have been the butt of jokes and hand-wringing for several years, and the recession of 2009 played a part in their doing so, this shift spans more than one generation. It has been decades in the making, a result of deep-rooted societal transformations in education, work and family building.
  • California’s $64 Billion Bullet Train To Nowhere Gets Delayed … Again
    In the late 1800s, it took railroad companies six years to lay 1,907 miles of track for what was to become the Transcontinental Railroad (or as Barack Obama calls it, the Intercontinental Railroad). Building that railroad line required tunneling through mountains — at one foot a day — building bridges — including one that spanned 700 feet — and doing all the work almost entirely by hand. As best, it will now take seven years for California to lay 119 miles of track — on relatively flat ground in the middle of nowhere. That news came from a contract revision that the Obama administration approved late last week. Instead of finishing the first leg of what is supposed to be a High-Speed Rail service from San Francisco to San Diego by 2018, the new deadline is 2022, which will be seven years after the January 2015 groundbreaking. Even when completed, the first leg will only run from Madera (population 63,105) down to Shafter, a small town north of Bakersfield. Not exactly a heavy transportation corridor.
  • Millions of “Subprime Consumers” Getting Credit Cards; What Could Go Wrong?
    We’ve said before that the growing level of debt in the US is the elephant in the room we are going to have to address at some point. We’ve talked about the massive government debt and the drag it puts on the US economy. We’ve talked about the crushing weight of student loan debt – increasing at a rate of about $2,726 per second. We’ve talked about the mounting corporate debt, doubling since 2008. And then there is personal debt.
  • Jeweler Tiffany posts steepest sales drop since financial crisis
    Tiffany & Co (TIF.N) reported its biggest drop in quarterly sales since the peak of the global financial crisis as a strong dollar discouraged tourists from buying its high-end jewelry and eroded revenue from markets outside the United States. The company’s shares fell as much as 3 percent in morning trading on Wednesday. In the Americas region, Tiffany’s sales at stores open more than a year plunged 10 percent in the first quarter. Analysts on average had expected a 9.1 percent decline, according to research firm Consensus Metrix. “Decline in customer share is evident among most shopper segments, including more affluent households,” research firm Conlumino’s Chief Executive Neil Saunders said. “It is especially pronounced among affluent younger shoppers where the brand is seen as representing ‘old world luxury’.”
  • Puerto Rico Default Is Coming and It’s Just the Tip of the Iceberg
    Good morning Puerto Rico. Default is coming. Legislation moving in Congress would set up an oversight board to guide the US territory through what essentially amounts to bankruptcy. It would not expend federal funds to bail out Puerto Rico, but would allow the island’s government to pay back debtors at less than 100%. This is just a taste of things to come.
  • Abercrombie & Fitch chairman says some customers are too afraid to shop – and it’s destroying sales
    Abercrombie & Fitch just took a major hit. The brand saw comparable sales decline 8% for this quarter, compared to a 9% decline this time last year. The parent company, which includes a brand for children and Hollister, saw comparable sales fall 4%. The main problem plaguing Abercrombie? Challenges abroad. Chairman Arthur Martinez told Business Insider that the company was “disproportionately affected” by the lack of tourists in flagship stores and international stores. He also said people in European markets are worried about personal safety following recent terrorist attacks, and that that would deter them from going out and shopping. He referenced that that terrorism fears, coupled with other factors, was “feeding into an air of caution” for consumers.
  • U.S. states stung by drop in April income tax revenue
    U.S. state personal income taxes tumbled in the key revenue month of April due to lower investment returns from weaker equities and energy prices in 2015, a Reuters analysis of state data found. This April, personal income tax (PIT) revenue fell by an average of 9.88 percent compared to the same month last year in the 32 U.S. states and Puerto Rico for which Reuters has data. Taxes on wages and investment income are a top revenue source for the 43 states that collect it. April is the most important revenue month because it contains the tax filing deadline and the tendency of taxpayers who owe money to wait until the last minute to pay. Personal income taxes make up slightly more than a third of states’ total general fund revenue, and sales taxes comprise roughly another third. Collections have been volatile in recent years, including 2013’s “April Surprise,” which delivered unexpectedly high revenues to states as taxpayers sold investments to dodge an increase in federal taxes.
  • Miner Sees Silver Price Surging Ninefold as Global Gadgets Boom
    A major Japanese electronics maker approached First Majestic Silver Corp. for the first time last month seeking to lock in future stock, a sign of supply concerns that could boost the metal’s price ninefold, according to the best-performing producer of the metal. “For an electronics manufacturer to come directly to us — that tells me something is changing in the market,” said Keith Neumeyer, chief executive officer of First Majestic, the top stock in Canada and among its global peers this year. “I think we’ll see three-digit silver,” he said, predicting the metal could surge to $140 an ounce by as early as 2019. That’s a bold forecast. While silver has rallied 19 percent this year to leapfrog gold as the best-performing precious metal, it settled lower Wednesday at $16.26 an ounce on the Comex in New York and reached a record of just under $50 in 2011. The highest projection among analysts surveyed by Bloomberg is $57 an ounce in 2019.
  • Manufacturing Recession Goes Global as Demand Withers
    The “strong dollar” has been blamed for the manufacturing doldrums in the US that started over a year ago. But then manufacturing in other countries should boom, or at least not decline, but that’s not the case. Manufacturing is sick and weakening in just about every major economy! References to 2009 and the Global Financial Crisis keep popping up in the latest spate of reports because that’s how bad it has gotten.
  • Hedge Funds Are Betting Record Amounts on Meltdown of Australian Banks and Housing Bubble
    It has been called the “widow maker trade,” based on how short sellers have been dealt with over the past few years. The fundamentals have been inviting: Australia has been in a fully blooming housing bubble. Households are the most indebted in the world, based on debt to disposable income. To maintain the housing bubble, the central bank slashed interest rates to record lows (1.75%). The government wants to keep the bubble going for as long as possible. So regulators close their eyes, according to media reports, to questionable or even illegal lending practices. Home prices, after soaring for years, are clearly unsustainable. But just because it’s a bubble doesn’t mean it has to implode on schedule. It will implode, as all bubbles do, but on its own time. If short sellers get the timing wrong, they’ll get run over by market euphoria. Hence, “widow maker trade” for betting against the housing bubble by shorting the banks. The biggest four banks in Australia are special creatures. Total assets of Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), Australia & New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ), Westpac Banking Corp (WBC), and National Australia Bank (NAB) amount to 220% of Australia’s GDP!
  • Ultimate Market Timer Sam Zell: “Know What the Problem Is?”
    “No one has ever accused me of not being a realist,” Sam Zell told CNBC. The chairman of Equity Group Investments and of apartment mega-landlord Equity Residential was talking about the markets for office and apartment buildings in some major cities that have already peaked. “Overall we’ve come off this extraordinary period of liquidity and this extraordinary period of low interest rates,” he said. “I think we’re unlikely to see a repeat of that going forward, and I think we’re going to see more supply in what had been pretty tight markets.” And he has been selling. Back in 2007, he once again proved his sense of market timing. As the commercial property bubble was already teetering, he sold Equity Office Properties Trust to Blackstone for $23 billion, not including $16 billion in debt. Then prices crashed, and commercial property defaults hit the banks. As the dust was settling at the end of the Great Recession, he went on a shopping spree. Now he’s selling again, unloading multifamily properties at peak prices on a massive scale just when a multi-year construction boom is flooding the market with new supply.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

Latest News Articles – June 2, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From May 27, 2016 to June 2, 2016:

  • Fresh Mainstream Nonsense on Gold Demand
    We and many others have made a valiant effort over the years to explain what actually moves the gold market (as examples see e.g. our  article “Misconceptions About Gold”, or Robert Blumen’s excellent essay “Misunderstanding Gold Demand”).  Sometimes it is a bit frustrating when we realize it has probably all been for naught. This was brought home to us again in a recent missive posted at Kitco, which discusses an RBC research note on gold. In a way, it is actually quite funny. The post at Kitco is titled “Gold’s ‘One-legged’ Rally Is Cause of Concern”. We can assure you it is not of “concern” to us. But we did wonder why the rally was supposedly “one-legged”, so we decided to read on.
  • The Fed Has Tightened Policy A Lot More Than You Think
    Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and her colleagues have tightened monetary policy by a lot more than their benchmark interest rate increase would suggest. It’s just that they’ve done it in the shadows. The so-called shadow federal funds rate rose about 300 basis points from the middle of 2014 through the end of last year as the central bank tapered, then ended its asset purchase program and prepared the way for its single rate increase in December.  The shadow rate’s increase helped fuel a rise of the dollar that depressed U.S. exports and economic growth, according to James Hamilton, an economics professor at the University of California at San Diego.
  • China’s Rolling Boom-Bust Cycle
    There is a mysterious figure making regular appearances in China’s government mouthpiece “People’s Daily”, which simply goes by the name “authoritative person” (AP). This unnamed entity always tends to show up with bad news for assorted speculators, by suggesting that various scenarios associated with monetary and/ or fiscal stimulus are actually not in China’s immediate future.
  • Saudi Arabia Considers Paying Contractors With IOUs 
    Saudi Arabia is considering using IOUs to pay outstanding bills with contractors and conserve cash, according to people briefed on the discussions. As payment from the state, contractors would receive bond-like instruments which they could hold until maturity or sell on to banks, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Companies have received some payments in cash and the rest could come in the “I-owe-you” notes, the people said, adding that no decisions have been made on the measures.
  • Regulators Warn 5 Top Banks They Are Still Too Big to Fail 
    The nation’s top bank regulators have added an unexpected voice to the growing chorus of critics worried that the biggest American banks, nearly eight years after the financial crisis, are still too big to fail. The Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation said on Wednesday that five of the nation’s eight largest banks — including JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America — did not have “credible” plans for how they would wind themselves down in a crisis without sowing panic. That suggests that if there were another crisis today, the government would need to prop up the largest banks if it wanted to avoid financial chaos.
  • The Consequences Of $50 Oil
    On Thursday Brent crude rose above $50 while the WTI rose to $49.85. The rise in prices came after the EIA reported a dramatic fall in U.S. inventories. The weekly drop of 4.2 million barrels, far more than the 2 million that was expected, triggered a sharp rise in a market which had been growing increasingly bullish, sending the Brent price above $50 on Thursday morning. It is the first time in seven months that the price has reached this level. It’s a recovery that came much more quickly than analysts expected. Since reaching a low of $27 in January, both Brent and WTI have risen by nearly 80 percent, an impressive achievement considering the general slump in commodities. Concerns from the Energy Information Agency (EIA) that the world would “drown in over-supply” in 2016 have been allayed.
  • Russia and China buy tons of gold getting ready for dollar collapse
    Russia and China buy gold to get rid of the weakening dollar. The weakening of the US dollar will become even more noticeable. Increasing their gold reserves, Moscow and Beijing make their  economies stronger, the Spanish newspaper El Pais wrote. According to the publication, central banks of Russia and China have been buying a lot of gold recently. During the past 15 months China has increased its gold reserves by 70% to 1,700 tons, becoming the world’s sixth country with largest reserves of gold. Russia’s gold reserves have grown by 21 percent to 1,460 tons. During the crisis, the price of gold grows, El Pais says. Demand for gold remains stable. From 2009 to 2015, China was buying 6-8 tons of gold a month, but in the summer of 2015, the country doubled its appetite for the precious metal. Russia started buying gold in 2015, increasing purchases against the backdrop of falling oil prices.
  • China has conducted a ‘war’ – not trade – with steel, experts say
    Despite China signaling moves to cut its excess steel production capacity, industry chiefs say the country has declared a metals “war” that has had a “devastating” impact for the rest of the world’s industry. Overcapacity in the steel industry has been a thorn in the side of the sector in recent years, pushing prices down and making it harder for some steel companies to survive. China’s low-cost metal producers have been widely cited as the main culprit for the glut. In particular, the world’s second largest economy has been accused of “dumping” cheap steel on to global markets, due to a slowdown in domestic demand, in a bid to gain market share. However Beijing has denied any wrongdoing and has said that its costs are lower than other producers.
  • Central Bankers put Ponzi and Madoff to Shame
    Charles Ponzi must be turning in his grave! His pyramid scheme in 1920 guaranteed returns of 50% in 50 days and 100% in 100 days. And initial investors clearly achieved these returns but most of them were too greedy to cash in. His total scheme “only” lost $20 million ($225 million in today’s money) for the investors. In comparison, Madoff cost his investors $18 billion. At least Ponzi became famous for his achievement. So far Madoff has not achieved fame. But both Ponzi and Madoff were small time crooks compared to governments and central banks today. Because whether we take, Japan, China, the EU or the USA, they have all created Ponzi schemes which are exponentially bigger than what Ponzi did. Admittedly no government is promising the 50% return that Ponzi did or Madoff’s 10-12%. Instead they are giving investors of their “Ponzi” bonds the illusion that they will receive the capital back. To paraphrase Mark Twain, investors are neither going to get the return ON their money nor the return OF their money, at least not in real terms.
  • Peter Schiff: June Rate Hike Immaterial; Rate Cuts and Quantitative Easing Up Next 
    Will the Federal Reserve raise rates in June? Peter Schiff says it’s immaterial. Peter appeared on CNBC’s Fast Money and created a firestorm when he said he sees this as a repeat of what happened at the end of last year and suggested everybody knows the Fed is at the end of its tightening cycle.#
  • China’s Largest Bank is Quiety Cornering the Market for London Physical Gold
    We have followed the ownership changes of London’s massive vaults with keen interest ever since our December 2014 article when we reported that Deutsche Bank’s gold vaule was for sale in “Massive 1,500 Ton Gold Vault For Sale In The Heart Of London, One Previous Owner, Asking £4,500,000 O.B.O.” The fate of that particular vault was revealed earlier this year when Reuters reported that none other than China’s largest bank, ICBC Standard Bank, was buying the lease on Deutsche Bank’s London gold and silver vault, “enlarging its footprint in the city’s bullion market”. The Chinese and South African lender is aiming to fill the gap left by Western banks, which are retreating from commodities to cut costs and reduce regulatory burden. “They (ICBC Standard Bank) have taken on the lease for the vault,” the first source said. Deutsche Bank’s vault became operational in June 2014 and has a capacity of 1,500 tonnes. It was built and is managed by British security services company G4S. “The figure that was initially talked about may have been around $4 million, but it’s way lower now,” a second source said, without disclosing the figure paid for the vault.
  • Trump: ‘Who the Hell Cares if There’s a Trade War?’
    Donald Trump responded on Thursday to conservatives critical of his proposal to impose a tariff on imported goods, characterizing them as “dummies” at a New Jersey fundraiser for Gov. Chris Christie. “These dummies say, ‘Oh, that’s a trade war.’ Trade war? We’re losing $500 billion in trade with China. Who the hell cares if there’s a trade war?” Trump rhetorically asked the audience. “Think of it,” the presumptive Republican nominee added. “$500 billion and they’re telling me about a trade war.”
  • BNN Advisor: Automated advice shakes up the investment industry
    There’s a “new” player who’s changing the landscape for the entire investment advisor industry. It’s the emergence of the robo-advisor, and while these online advisors manage about $50 billion dollars in assets globally today, that number is expected to balloon to $2 trillion in the next four years. With our panel of advisors, BNN examines these new online tools that use software to help investors build their portfolios.
  • The CME Admits Futures Trading Was Rigged Under Old System
    Ask any trader what they believe to be the hallmark feature of any “rigged market” and the most frequent response(in addition to flagrant crime of the type supposedly demonstrated every day by Deutsche Bank and which should not exist in a regulated market) will be an institutionally bifurcated and legitimized playing field, one in which those who can afford faster, bigger, more effective data pipes, collocated servers and response times – and thus riskless trades – outperform everyone else who may or may not know that the market is legally rigged against them. Think of it as baseball game for those who take steroids vs a ‘roid free game, only here the steroids are perfectly legal for those who can afford them. Or like a casino where the house, or in this case the HFTs, always win. However, as it turned out, the vast majority of the public had no idea that a small subset of the market was juicing, despite our constant reports on the topic since 2009, until the arrival of Michael Lewis’ book Flash Boys, which explained the secret sauce that made all those HFT prop shops into unbeatable “trading titans”: frontrunning.
  • David Dayen’s ‘Chain of Title’ Confirms What You Always Suspected: The Game is Rigged
    Chain of Title should be required reading in every college-level business ethics class in America. At a time when “business ethics” is an oxymoron, perhaps the current generation that adores Bernie Sanders might better understand the dangers big banking monopolies hold. David Dayen’s newly released non-fiction book, Chain of Title, unearths a system with the power and collateral to stonewall millions of homeowners from obtaining one very simple answer: Who owns my mortgage? If you haven’t been able to wrap your head around why the federal government has failed to prosecute one banker for the foreclosure crisis there is a very simple answer that Chain of Title alludes to. The federal government has a dark secret: the trusts are empty and the falsified notes cannot be traced back to their true owners so they must be “recreated” if a default occurs. This means that the investors, the pensions and the trusts own nothing. It also means that the banks now own everything- including the U.S. federal government. It hardly matters that we have separation of powers if the bankers and elite control all three branches.
  • MELTDOWN 2016? China Set To Implode GLOBAL Economy LATE SUMMER (Again)… INSIDER SAYS GET PREPARED NOW! Brexit… Soros Buying Up Massive Amounts Of Gold Bullion
    China’s Communist Party goes way of Qing Dynasty as debt hits limit. Nobody rings a bell at the top of the credit supercycle, to misuse an old adage. Except that this time somebody very powerful in China has done exactly that. China watchers are still struggling to identify the author of an electrifying article in the People’s Daily that declares war on debt and the “fantasy” of perpetual stimulus. Written in a imperial tone, it commands China to break its addiction to credit and take its punishment before matters spiral out of control. If that means bankruptcies must run their course, so be it. The 11,000 character text – citing an “authoritative person” – was given star-billing on the front page. It described leverage as the “original sin” from which all other risks emanate, with debt “growing like a tree in the air”.
  • Wells Fargo launches 3% down payment mortgage
    First-time buyers and low- to moderate-income buyers have largely been sidelined by today’s housing recovery. The common cry is too-tight credit. Lenders have kept the credit box restrictive because they are gun-shy from the billions of dollars in buy backs and judicial settlements stemming from the mortgage crisis that they still face today. Now, the nation’s largest lender, Wells Fargo, says it is opening that box with a new low down payment loan — a loan it claims is low-risk to the bank.
  • Understanding Societal Collapse: Warnings From Venezuela’s Crisis
    As we write about the risks of our over-indebted economy, of our unsustainable fossil fuel-dependent energy policies, and our accelerating depletion of key resources, it’s not a far leap to start worrying about the potential for a coming degradation of our modern lifestyle — or even the possibility of full-blown societal collapse. Sadly, collapse is not just a theoretical worry for a growing number of people around the world. They’re living within it right now.
  • 25 Years, $13 Billion Lost: Connecticut Income Tax Continues To Fail
    Twenty-five years ago, amid economic turmoil and a looming budget crisis that put legislators at each other’s throats, the then-governor of Connecticut made a fateful decision. Unsure of the best way to dig Connecticut out of its financial hole, Governor Lowell Weicker implemented an income tax. The Nutmeg State would certainly come to rue that day. Of course, Governor Weicker did not anticipate that the adoption of an income tax would send the state into a tailspin. In fact, as he announced his plans on May 15, 1991, he said, “I feel great.” In 2015, however, Connecticut taxpayers are feeling less than great. Despite Governor Weicker’s promises – that the income-tax revenue would be spent responsibly, that the additional dollars would correct Connecticut’s financial course – the new tax only led to further disarray and decline.
  • What happens when you’re deported to Britain?
    A widowed mother-of-five who has lived in Australia for most of her life is facing deportation to the UK. What awaits her when she gets off the plane, asks Claire Bates. Kelly Webb, 30, hasn’t seen Britain since she moved to Australia at the age of two. But she has a British passport, so could be sent back to the UK after serving a prison sentence for burglary. It’s not an unusual situation. In 2015, 71 out of the 134 deported prisoners helped by the charity Prisoners Abroad had been residents of Australia, Canada or the US for many years. The charity is the first point of call for prisoners facing deportation, and guides clients through the resettlement process.
  • Is The Market Priced For A Summer Rate-Hike?
    Last November, capital markets were discounting a rate hike five months later, based on Fed Funds futures. Same story today. Last November, the S&P 500 was trading near 2100. Same story today. Last November, VIX levels were around 14. Same story today. Last November, instead of waiting five months, the Fed hiked rates one month later; the S&P dropped by 10% over the next eight weeks… And as BofAML’s Savita Subramanian warns, hiking during a profits recession usually hasn’t ended well. Admittedly, other factors contributed to the decline, but history is rhyming, and BofAML thinks a rate hike this summer could drive some downside. While Fed Funds futures prior to mid-May implied little to no chance of a summer hike, the release of the latest FOMC meeting minutes have shifted futures to a 30% probability of a June hike and a 50% probability of a July hike.
  • BSI Shut by Singapore as Swiss Start Probe; EFG Takes Over Bank
    Singapore is closing Swiss bank BSI SA’s unit in the city-state and Switzerland began criminal proceedings against the firm, as investigations into a troubled Malaysian state fund reverberate throughout the private bank’s international operations. The Monetary Authority of Singapore said it will withdraw BSI Bank Ltd.’s license for breaches of money laundering rules and impose S$13.3 million ($9.6 million) in financial penalties on the BSI unit for 41 breaches, including its failure to conduct due diligence on high-risk accounts and monitor suspicious customer transactions. Singapore authorities have also referred six senior BSI executives to the public prosecutor, including the private bank’s former chief executive officer in the city state and his deputy.
  • Core Durable Goods Orders Slump As Inventories Decline For 4th Straight Month
    Core Durable Goods Orders tumbled 0.8% MoM and 6.7% YoY – down 15 of the last 18 months. However, following drastic revisions across the entire time series and thanks to a surge in military spending (+3.7%) and non-defense aircraft (+64.9% – bringing back memories of Boeing’s aberration from a year or two back) the headline Durable Goods print rose 3.4% MoM. More worrying for GDP enthusiasts is the 0.2% decline in durable goods inventories in April for the 4th straight month. Not a pretty picture under the hood….
  • Building robot McDonald’s staff ‘cheaper’ than hiring workers on minimum wage
    A former McDonald’s CEO is warning that robots will take over jobs at the huge enterprise – because it’s cheaper than employing humans. He said that buying highly skilled robotics is cheaper than employing people at the fast food restaurant. The worrying forecast comes as he warns huge job losses are imminent, and that it’s ‘common sense’ to replace humans in the workplace.
  • Richmond Fed Crashes Into Contraction From 6 Year Highs, Biggest Drop In History
    Having spiked mysteriously to 6 year highs in March (from 4 year lows in Feb), Richmond Fed’s manufacturing survey crashed back into contraction in May (printing -1 against =14 prior and +8 expectations). Weakness was broad-based across the entire set of subcomponents with New Orders plunging, shipments crashing, employees and workweek tumbling, and worse still future employment and capex expectations dropped precipitously. The drop in the last 2 months is the largest in the 23 year history of the survey.
  • Negative interest rates spark record gold rush as demand for safe deposit boxes jumps
    Investors snapped up gold at a record pace in the first three months of 2016 as global growth fears intensified and central banks slashed interest rates deeper into negative territory. Concerns that Britain could leave the EU also triggered a spike in demand across Europe where ” investors were plagued by lingering Brexit fears,” according to the World Gold Council.
  • DEUTSCHE BANK: The Fed is probably screwed
    The Federal Reserve wants to do two things right now: Prepare markets for future interest rates hikes & Raise interest rates. But the problem, according to Deutsche Bank’s global economics team, is that by preparing markets for future interest rate hikes the Fed potentially hampers its ability to actually carry out those hikes in the future. Said another way, the Fed appears stuck in a negative feedback loop wherein suggestions that higher rates are coming create the unsettled conditions that ultimately force the Fed to keep rates right where they are. And so on.
  • Oil Price Tops $50 As Canada Fires Fuel Recovery
    The barrel price of Brent Crude oil, which is seen as the global benchmark of oil industry performance, has reached $50 for the first time in 2016 as supply problems due to wildfires in Canada continue to have an impact. The oil industry has been in turmoil over the past several years, with the price of Brent Crude hitting 13-year lows of less than $28 a barrel in February amid concerns of a global oversupply and disruption in the world markets. The $50 milestone was reached in the early hours of the morning during Asian trading following the news that US inventories of oil had fallen in response to disruption in Canada. Wildfires in the country have resulted in a cut in oil output by up to a third. The value was later holding strong at $50.16.
  • Should I Be Worried About Gold Confiscation?
    One of the common questions we hear from gold buyers is, “Is it possible that the government might come after my gold and confiscate it?” In a time when the governments are waging a war on cash, it’s not hard for people to imagine that a war on gold is next. There is some precedence for this, after all. On April 5, 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Executive Order 6102 “[forbade] the Hoarding of gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates within the continental United States.” Americans who owned gold were told to deliver their gold to the bank and in exchange receive paper dollars of equivalent value, $20.67 per ounce at the time.
  • Former McDonalds CEO Crushes The Minimum Wage Lie: “It’s Cheaper To Buy A Robot Than Hire At $15/Hour”
    While this should come as no surprise to any rational non-establishment-teet-suckling economist (and certainly not to our readers), former McDonalds’ CEO Ed Rensi continued his crusade against the naive “solution” to poor living standards that has been peddled by a clueless administration in the form of a higher federal minimum wage, and after he patiently explained one month ago that “the $15 minimum wage demand, which translates to $30,000 a year for a full-time employee, is built upon a fundamental misunderstanding of a restaurant business just do the math” Rensi found that nobody has still done the math. Which is perhaps why the ex-CEO reappeared on Fox Business yesterday to explain to Maria Bartiromo that as fast-food workers across the country vie for $15 per hour wages, many business owners have already begun to take humans out of the picture, McDonalds most certainly included.
  • US Government Quietly Cuts Historical Capex Data By Billions Of Dollars
    While Wall Street looked upon today’s Durable Goods report with caution, noting the substantial beat in the headline print which was entirely as a result of a surge in nondefense aircraft orders (read Boeing) which soared by 65%, there was substantial weakness below the surface especially in the core capex print, the capital goods orders nondefense ex-aircraft, which disappointed significantly, sliding 0.8% on expectations of a 0.3% rebound. However, that was just part of the story. A far bigger part was missed by most because as always Wall Street was focused on the sequential change, and not on the absolute number. As it turns out, the Department of Commerce decided to quietly revise all the core data going back all the way back to 2014. In doing so it stripped away about 4% from the nominal dollar amount in Durable Goods ex-transports, where the March print was slashed from $154.7 Billion to $148.3 Billion…
  • Russia’s ‘Iron Man’ robot soldier is country’s latest terrifying war weapon
    Meet Ivan the Terminator – Russia’s robotic answer to Iron Man that could be about to change military warfare forever. The terrifying new robot soldier is the latest in the country’s list of high-tech weaponry as it competes with the US and China in the artificial intelligence stakes. According to Russian newspaper Komosomolskaya Pravd, the droid is designed “to replace the person in the battle or in emergency areas where there is a risk of explosion, fire, high background radiation, or other conditions harmful to humans. “The development of a special military robot is one of the priorities of military construction in Russia.” The Iron Man machines are remotely controlled, but there are fears that they could become completely autonomous in the future.
  • Ottawa posts $2B deficit for fiscal year as income tax revenue falls in March
    The federal government posted a deficit in line with what was projected in its spring budget as personal and corporate income tax revenue fell in March. According to its preliminary estimates, the Finance Department said today there was a $2 billion deficit for the government’s latest fiscal year. However, that was before any year-end adjustments as well as a $3.7 billion commitment to benefits for veterans. The spring budget had projected a $5.4 billion deficit for the 2015-16 fiscal year. The final results are expected to be released in the fall, but the Finance Department said the results were “broadly in line” with what was projected in the budget. For March, the last month of the fiscal year, the government posted a $9.4 billion deficit compared with a deficit of $3 billion in the same month last year. The shortfall came as government revenue fell $5 billion due to lower personal and corporate income taxes, offset in part by higher excise taxes and duties. Program spending increased $1.3 billion, while public debt charges gained $100 million.
  • Paris and Berlin ready ‘Plan B’ for life after Brexit
    European leaders have stepped-up secret discussions about a future union without Britain, drawing-up a “plan-B” focused on closer security and defence co-operation in the event of a UK vote to leave the EU. At several overlapping meetings in recent weeks — in Hanover, Rome and Brussels — EU leaders and their most trusted aides have discussed how to mount a common response to Brexit, which would be the bloc’s biggest setback in its 60-year history. More than a dozen politicians and officials involved at various levels have sketched out to the Financial Times the ideas for concerted action to “double down on the irreversibility of our union” — as well as the many internal divisions that stand in their way. Rather than attempt a sudden lurch to integrate the eurozone, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany and President François Hollande are instead eyeing a push to deepen security and defence co-operation, a less contentious initiative that has appeal beyond the 19-member euro area.
  • Eurozone RUPTURE: Now SPAIN threatens to tear EU apart as banks LOSE €1.4BILLION in a day
    ANIC over the stability of Spanish banks hit fever pitch yesterday, exposing yet another rupture in the financial system holding the eurozone together. Banco Popular, one of the Spain’s leading financial firms, caused mayhem after admitting that it needed billions to bolster its balance sheet. Shocked investors dumped shares in the firm, with the bank stock’s value plunging by 24 per cent this morning, after the cash call and plans to issue another 2 billion shares. It resulted in €1.4billion being wiped off the value of the bank’s share price.
  • Venezuela Stepping Up Gold Selling as Petrodollars Dry Up
    Venezuela has ratcheted up efforts to sell off its gold holdings and raise the cash needed to fund imports and pay back debts after the collapse in oil throttled the economy. The country cut its gold reserves by 16 percent in the first quarter, following a 24 percent reduction in 2015, according to data from the International Monetary Fund. The 1.38-million ounce reduction was the largest by any central bank since Switzerland sold 3.2 million ounces in the third quarter of 2007, and coincided with continued increases in gold reserves in mainland China.
  • New financial MELTDOWN set to sink EU as German banks lose £14,292,610,000.00 in 90 DAYS
    EUROPE’S biggest economy was plunged into fresh chaos tonight amid warnings a new financial crisis in Germany could destroy the EU. Shares in Germany’s two biggest lenders – Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank – fell sharply again as panic gripped global markets. They have now seen their combined market value plummet by more than £14BILLION in the past three months. Deutsche Bank shares fell by nearly four per cent to close at an all-time low amid turmoil not seen since the depths of the financial crisis in 2009. Meanwhile shares in Commerzbank, Germany’s second biggest lender, fell even further, by 4.65 per cent, to close at their lowest level in nearly two-and-a-half years.
  • Q1 2016 Canadian Silver Maple Sales Surge To Highest Record Ever
    The Royal Canadian Mint just published its Q1 2016 Report, and the silver bullion coin sales figures were stunning to say the least.  Not only did sales of Canadian Silver Maple Leafs surpass its previous record during the third quarter last year, it did so by a wide margin. Why is this such a big deal?  Because Q1 2016 sales of Silver Maples topped the Q3 2015 record, without surging demand and product shortages.  Last year, there was a huge spike in silver retail investment demand due to the supposed “Shemitah” or the collapse of the broader stock markets.  Investors piled into silver in a big way as they perceived a year-end market crash was inevitable.
  • Outrage as EU chief calls for EURO ARMY commanded by Brussels to take on Russia and IS
    BRUSSELS’ top bureaucrat came under fire yesterday after calling for a European army to be set up as part of a common foreign and security policy. Jean-Claude Juncker – backed by leading German politician’s – said a “euro-army” commanded by Brussels would provide a “more credible” response to threats, including from Russia. But his comments sparked a storm of protest in Britain, where eurosceptic campaigners have long warned of Brussels’ ambitions for its own defence force. Ukip MEP and defence spokesman Mike Hookem said: “Ukip have been ridiculed for years and branded scaremongers for suggesting that the UK’s traditional parties were slowly relinquishing control of our defence and moving toward a European Army. “However, yet again, UKIP’s predictions have been proved correct.
  • Gold Prices Should Rise Above $1,900/oz -“Get In Now!”
    Gold prices are likely to rise above $1,900/oz in the next phase of the bull market and investors should “get in now,” Chief Market Analyst of the Lindsey Group, Peter Boockvar told CNBC’s “Futures Now” yesterday. “This is just the beginning of a new bull market in the metals,” Boockvar believes. Ultimately, Boockvar believes that the 2011 highs of around $1,900 for gold are not only reachable, but surpassable, as he reasoned that bull markets historically exceed the previous bull market peak at some point. As Boockvar sees it, it’s just a matter of when.
  • And Another Week Of Selling: “In 2016, Equity Funds Have Lost The Largest Ever Outflow For The Asset Class”
    For many weeks in a row now we have been asking, mostly jokingly, how with everyone else (both retail and “smart money”) selling, and with stock buybacks sharply lower in recent months, is the market higher. Specifically, who is buying? This question is no longer a joke. After this week’s 17th consecutive outflow by “smart money” funds (mostly on the back of surging hedge fund redemption), moments ago we got the latest Lipper fund flow data. It was, as BofA put it, “unambiguous risk-off weekly flows.” As BofA also put it: “Equities continued to experience outflows and lost $3.32bn (-0.1%) last week, their 4th consecutive decline. Year-to-date, equity funds have lost $58.6bn (-0.6%), the largest ever dollar outflow in any 22 week period for the asset class”
  • Japan’s Abe points to 2008 crisis as G7 leaders debate global risk
    Group of Seven leaders voiced concern about emerging economies at a summit in Japan on Thursday as their host, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, made a pointed comparison to the 2008 global financial crisis but not all his G7 partners appeared to agree. The G7 leaders did agree on the need for flexible spending to spur world growth but the timing and amount depended on each country, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroshige Seko told reporters, adding some countries saw no need for such spending.
  • Bank of Montreal to cut 4% of workforce, memo says
    Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) will shed around 4 per cent of its 46,000 workforce as part of a drive to cut costs, staff were told in a memo on Wednesday after the lender reported a decline in quarterly profit. Chief Executive Bill Downe said the move, which will see around 1,850 jobs go, was a response to changing customer behavior and the advent of new digital technologies. “We have taken this step to position the bank for what lies ahead – and to account for the structural changes underway in the financial services industry,” Downe said in the memo seen by Reuters.
  • World’s 16 biggest banks, including RBC, ordered to face Libor lawsuits in ruling court warns could ruin them
    Sixteen of the world’s largest banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc. must face antitrust lawsuits accusing them of hurting investors who bought securities tied to Libor by rigging an interest-rate benchmark, a ruling that an appeals court warned could devastate them. The appellate judges reversed a lower-court ruling on one issue — whether the investors had adequately claimed in their complaints to have been harmed — while sending the cases back for the judge to consider another issue: whether the plaintiffs are the proper parties to sue, in part because their claims, if successful, provide for triple damages that could overwhelm the banks.
  • Lufthansa to suspend flights to Venezuela
    The German airline, Lufthansa, has announced that it will suspend flights to Venezuela from 18 June due to economic difficulties in the country. The company also said currency controls in Venezuela made it impossible for airlines to convert their earnings into dollars and send the money abroad. Venezuela’s economy has been hit hard by a sharp drop in the price of oil – the country’s main source of income. Venezuela has high inflation and severe shortages of basic goods. In a statement, Lufthansa said that it “will be forced to suspend our service between Caracas and Frankfurt as of 18 June”. It noted that the demand for international flights to Venezuela had dropped in 2015 and in the first quarter of the current year. However, it said it hoped to restore services in the near future.
  • MELTDOWN 2016? China Set To Implode GLOBAL Economy LATE SUMMER (Again)… INSIDER SAYS GET PREPARED NOW! Brexit… Soros Buying Up Massive Amounts Of Gold Bullion
    China’s Communist Party goes way of Qing Dynasty as debt hits limit. Nobody rings a bell at the top of the credit supercycle, to misuse an old adage. Except that this time somebody very powerful in China has done exactly that. China watchers are still struggling to identify the author of an electrifying article in the People’s Daily that declares war on debt and the “fantasy” of perpetual stimulus. Written in a imperial tone, it commands China to break its addiction to credit and take its punishment before matters spiral out of control. If that means bankruptcies must run their course, so be it. The 11,000 character text – citing an “authoritative person” – was given star-billing on the front page. It described leverage as the “original sin” from which all other risks emanate, with debt “growing like a tree in the air”.
  • How Bad Are The US Computer Systems? An 8” Floppy Disc Houses Nuclear Coordinate Data
    If you thought that $80 billion a year would be a sufficient enough budget for the US government to systematically upgrade its computer systems, think again. In a report released by nonpartisan congressional investigators found that about $60 billion of the government’s $80 billion IT budget goes straight to maintenance just to keep the aging technology running, not to modernization according to ABC News.
  • FRANCE STRIKE: ‘The Workers Fight Back’
    All over France strikes and demonstrations are taking place. People are protesting against the French government’s attempt to reform labour laws which would make it easier to hire and fire workers. French labour laws have always been seen as an obstacle to progress by the ruling class due to the modest protection they afford workers. Since the popular front of 1936 and in particular the National Council of the Resistance formed after the liberation in 1945, French worker made significant gains. These ‘acquis sociaux’ or social gains are now being brutally rolled back by a powerful oligarchy bent on driving down the price of labour and increasing the profits of capitalists.
  • This Is How Much Your Health Insurance Payment Is About To Jump By
    It’s official: years of warnings that Obamacare will lead to dramatic increases in healthcare premiums are about to be validated. As the WSJ writes, big health plans stung by losses in the first few years of the U.S. health law’s implementation are seeking hefty premium increases for individual plans sold through insurance exchanges in more than a dozen states. To be sure, we have extensively covered the imminent danger of rising healthcare prices as a result of Obamacare’s intrusive intervention in the insurance sector; however now that this is about to become mainstream information, we expect consumers to hunker down and save even more in anticipation of what is about to be a shock price increase for millions of middle-class American families. As the WSJ reports, the insurers’ proposed rates for individual coverage in states that have made their 2017 requests public largely bear out health plans’ grim predictions about their challenges under the health-care overhaul. According to the insurers’ filings with regulators, large plans in states including New York, Pennsylvania and Georgia are seeking to raise rates by 20% or more.
  • Former IMF economist asserts that gold is money as good as government bonds
    GoldCore’s Mark O’Byrne this week calls attention to commentary written this month by Harvard economics professor Kenneth Rogoff recommending that countries diversify their foreign exchange holdings away from the government bonds of developed countries and into gold. Rogoff’s argument seems to be that with interest rates already effectively at zero or below, there’s nothing to be gained through the purchase of such bonds, while gold is a “low-risk asset” that offers the possibility of capital appreciation. But then Rogoff makes what from anyone else would be considered the rookie mistake of asserting that “gold does not pay interest,” as if gold isn’t leased for interest by Western governments every day in huge amounts and as if gold leasing isn’t a primary mechanism of gold price suppression by those governments, the governments whose bonds Rogoff acknowledges are becoming less attractive as investments.
  • We Need New Labels: I Propose “100% Robot Made”
    Yesterday, Apple’s iPhone maker, Foxconn announced an immediate cut of 60,000 workers to be replaced by robots. Today, Adidas announced the first ever 100% robot-made shoe. “Speedfactory”. Deutsche Welle, Germany’s international broadcaster, reports Adidas Shoe Manufacturing Will Return to Germany. That’s the good news. For manufacturing job seekers, the bad news is the shoes will be 100% robot made.
  • Billionaires Are Wrong on Gold
    Recently the mainstream media has reported that several billionaires are concerned about global financial markets and have purchased significant amounts of gold to protect their portfolios. Take Stan Druckenmiller, the famed hedge fund manager who managed money for George Soros as the lead portfolio manager for Quantum Fund. He and Soros famously ‘broke the Bank of England’ when they shorted the British pound sterling in 1992, reputedly making more than $1 billion in profits. He has reportedly used over $323 million of his own money to invest in gold. This is approximately a 30% allocation in his $1-billion family fund. His belief in gold can be attributed to his criticism of the Federal Reserve’s massive money printing and near-zero interest rates. Ongoing low rates will drive both central banks and investors into gold.
  • Switzerland About to Vote on “Free Lunch” for Everyone
    In early June the Swiss will be called upon to make a historic decision. Switzerland is the first country worldwide to put the idea of an Unconditional Basic Income to a vote and the outcome of this referendum will set a strong precedent and establish a landmark in the evolution of this debate. The Swiss Basic Income Initiative in a demonstration in front of parliament. As we have previously reported (see “Swiss Parliament Shoots Down Socialist Utopia” for details), Switzerland’s parliament has already rejected the idea, with even the socialists voting against it (proving that they are still in possession of most of their marbles and quite likely in possession of an abacus as well).
  • Wow. Congress wants to prohibit the Fed from bailing out bankrupt states.
    Just days ago, in the midst of the Puerto Rico debt morass, 24 members of Congress introduced the “No Bailouts for State, Territory, and Local Governments Act.” The title pretty much sums it up. Congress knows there’s a massive wave of defaults looming at the city and state level. Detroit and Puerto Rico are just the tip of the iceberg. Aside from a few top performers like Alaska, South Dakota, and Wyoming (which, ironically, have no state income tax), many US states have atrocious finances. Illinois and Maine, for example, have dangerously low levels of cash relative to the debts and obligations they have to pay.
  • Oil Prices Likely in Mid-$30s-$40s Per Barrel After OPEC Meet
    Oil prices are likely to fall after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) summit in Vienna next week and then stabilize between around $35 to $45 per barrel, Trends Research Institute head Gerald Celente told Sputnik. Energy ministers of the once powerful oil cartel are set to meet in Vienna on June 2, less than two months after a failure of the April meeting with non-OPEC countries in Doha that sought to freeze oil output at January levels in a bid to shore up prices.
  • EU referendum: Ex-military officers fighting for EU exit
    EU policies are undermining the UK’s combat effectiveness, a dozen former senior military officers have warned. Speaking out in favour of Britain leaving the EU, they said that Nato, and not the EU, should remain the cornerstone of Europe’s defence. Among the group is General Sir Michael Rose, whose name was originally on a letter organised by Downing Street supporting UK membership of the EU. The Remain campaign says membership of the EU and Nato is not contradictory.
  • Will Deutsche Bank Survive This Wave Of Trouble Or Will It Be The Next Lehman Brothers?
    If you have been waiting for “the next Lehman Brothers moment” which will cause the global financial system to descend into a state of mass panic, you might want to keep a close eye on German banking giant Deutsche Bank.  It is approximately three times larger than Lehman Brothers was, and if the most important bank in the strongest economy in Europe were to implode, it would instantly send shockwaves rippling across the entire planet.  Those that follow my work regularly know that I started sounding the alarm about Deutsche Bank beginning last September.  Since that time, the bad news from Deutsche Bank has not stopped pouring in.  They announced a loss of 6.8 billion euros for 2015, Moody’s just downgraded their debt to two levels above junk status, and they have been plagued by scandal after scandal.  In recent months they have gotten into trouble for trying to rig precious metal prices, for committing “equity trading fraud” and for their dealings in mortgage-backed securities.
  • Yet ANOTHER Billionaire Warns About Coming Chaos … Maybe There’s Something to This Trend?
    Is there something in the water that billionaires drink? Because yet ANOTHER one just warned about coming market and economic chaos this morning! Sam Zell is his name, and real estate is his game. Zell has founded or invested in multiple public and private real estate firms from his home base in Chicago over the years, and is now worth an estimated $4.8 billion. As a guest host on CNBC today, he offered nothing but cold water and harsh reality for the starry-eyed optimists. Specifically, he said “holding a lot of cash right now doesn’t seem like a terrible opportunity” … added that we’re in the “ninth inning” of the economic cycle … and warned that recession was right around the corner.
  • The CME Admits Futures Trading Was Rigged Under Old System
    Ask any trader what they believe to be the hallmark feature of any “rigged market” and the most frequent response(in addition to flagrant crime of the type supposedly demonstrated every day by Deutsche Bank and which should not exist in a regulated market) will be an institutionally bifurcated and legitimized playing field, one in which those who can afford faster, bigger, more effective data pipes, collocated servers and response times – and thus riskless trades – outperform everyone else who may or may not know that the market is legally rigged against them. Think of it as baseball game for those who take steroids vs a ‘roid free game, only here the steroids are perfectly legal for those who can afford them. Or like a casino where the house, or in this case the HFTs, always win.
  • Moody’s downgrades Deutsche Bank’s ratings
    Moody’s Investors Service has today downgraded the ratings of Deutsche Bank AG and affiliates, including the bank’s long-term deposit rating, to A3 from A2, its senior unsecured debt rating to Baa2 from Baa1, its standalone baseline credit assessment (BCA) to ba1 from baa3, and its counterparty risk assessment to A3(cr) from A2(cr). Deutsche Bank’s short-term ratings and short-term counterparty risk assessments were also downgraded to Prime-2 from Prime-1 and to Prime-2(cr) and Prime-1(cr), respectively. Today’s rating action reflects the increased execution challenges Deutsche Bank faces in achieving its strategic plan. Moody’s also downgraded the ratings of US–based Deutsche Bank Trust Corporation and its trust company affiliates. These trust companies’ long-term deposit ratings were downgraded to A2 from A1, their long-term issuer ratings were downgraded to Baa2 from Baa1, their standalone baseline credit assessment was downgraded to baa1 from a3; their long-term and short-term counterparty risk assessments were downgraded to A3(cr) from A2(cr) and to Prime-2(cr) and Prime-1(cr) respectively. The Prime-1 short-term deposit ratings of these trust companies were affirmed.
  • Forget a Dollar Collapse…This Is a Much Bigger Threat to Your Wealth Right Now
    It’s an immediate threat to your wealth right now…and it’s another sign we’re headed for a major financial crisis. What we’re covering today stems from the Fed’s “monetary experiment” that began in 2008. As you may know, that year, the Fed dropped its key interest rate to effectively zero. It then started borrowing and printing trillions of dollars. This experiment has been nothing short of a disaster. Over the past eight years, the Fed’s pumped $3.5 trillion into our financial system. And our national debt has more than doubled.
  • These Investing Legends Have Never Been More Bearish on U.S. Stocks
    George Soros is investing like a crisis is around the corner. You’ve probably heard of Soros. Thanks to his legendary track record, he’s one of the world’s most well-known investors. From 1969 to 2001, he generated average annual returns of 20%…nearly beating the S&P 500 2-to-1. Soros also famously “broke the Bank of England” in 1992. These days, he runs Soros Fund Management, which manages about $10 billion.
  • Why China’s Banks Are Toast—-Losses May Hit $1.2 Trillion, 60% Of Total Bank Capital
    Yesterday, when reporting on the latest development in China’s ongoing under-the-table stealth nationalization-cum-bailoutof insolvent enterprises courtesy of a proposed plan to convert bad debt into equity, we noted that while China has already managed to convert over $220 billion of Non-performing loans into equity, concerns – both ours and others’ – remained. As Liao Qiang, director of financial institutions at S&P Global Ratings in Beijing, said coercing banks to become stakeholders in companies that could not pay back loans will further weigh down profits this year. Instead of underpinning stability at banks, the efforts undermine it. That said, while many have voiced their pessimism about China’s latest attempt to sweep trillions in NPLs under the rug, there had been no comprehensive analysis of just how big the impact on China’s banks, economy or financial system would be as a result of this latest Chinese strategy. Until now.
  • Another Shoe Falls—–U. S. Service Sector Now At Stall Speed
    Markit’s Services PMI fell to just 51.2 in May, dropping a rather large 1.6 points from 52.8 in April. That meant the combined US Composite PMI, which puts together both manufacturing and services, was barely above 50, registering just 50.8. As with all PMI’s the distinction around 50 is unimportant, what matters is the direction and for more than a single month. On that count, services reflect what we have seen in manufacturing: that the “rebound” in March and April was nothing more than a small relative improvement after the liquidation-driven start to the year. The economy didn’t get better, it for a few months just failed to get worse.
  • The Hidden Side of Wall Street’s “Mischief”
    Wall Street gets a bad rap. Much of it is deserved, but not necessarily for the reasons you might expect. You see, to many, Wall Street’s suit-clad warriors appear to be nothing more than money-sucking leeches… draining the pockets of Americans’ hard-earned dollars through their fees, commissions and kick-backs. Whether this is a fair characterization or not, Wall Street’s worst give haters plenty of ammo. About this time last year, the United States Justice Department vowed to fine Wall Street banks something like $5.8 billion for rigging currency and interest rate markets. A long scroll of instant message conversations confirmed that many Wall Street insiders were coordinating this mischief. The most arrogant of the bunch even went so far to pontificate: “If you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying.”
  • Our National Debt Will Grow to $31 Trillion by 2023
    It just seems like human nature to ruin a good thing. As much as I am a strong proponent of free market capitalism, and against complex regulations and central planning, I understand government’s role in all this. Capitalism and democracy teamed up in the late 1700s to form the big bang in economics, or what I call “When Harry met Sally.” They’re opposites that balance each other – capitalism rewards people for their contributions, and democracy ensures that greed doesn’t take over. We took Adam Smith’s theory of the “invisible hand,” limited government and laissez faire politics… and combined it with Alexander Hamilton’s doctrine of a stronger government to enhance capitalism. We invested in common infrastructures, established a central bank with uniform monetary policies, and implemented financial and legal systems – things free market capitalism can’t do alone. That’s why, together, these two ideologies complement each other – so long as they don’t get in each other’s way.
  • China’s Credit-Fuelled Economy Is “Gyrating Like A Spinning-Top That’s Out Of Momentum”
    China’s hard landing has already begun, warns economist Richard Duncan as the nation’s credit-fuelled economic boom ended in 2015 and a protracted slump lies ahead. He has published a series of videos explaining why China’s economic development model of export-led and investment-driven growth is now in crisis leaving “China’s economy resembles a spinning top that is running out of momentum. It is wobbling and gyrating erratically.”
  • The Relationship Between The United States And China Is Officially Going Down The Tubes 
    What happens when the two largest economies on the planet start fighting a trade war with one another?  Well, we are about to find out.  As you will see below, the U.S. has gone “nuclear” on China in a trade dispute over steel, and the Chinese response is likely to be at least as strong.  Meanwhile, events in the South China Sea have brought tensions between the Chinese government and the Obama administration to a boiling point.  The Obama administration strongly insists that China does not have a legal right to those islands, and in China there is now talk that it may ultimately be necessary to confront the United States militarily in order keep control of them.  Most Americans may not realize this, but the relationship between the United States and China is officially going down the tubes, and this is likely to have very significant consequences during the years to come. Let’s start with the trade war that has erupted.  About a week ago, we learned that the Obama administration had decided to “go nuclear” on China by imposing a 522 percent duty on cold-rolled steel from China that is used in certain kinds of manufacturing…
  • The One World Religion Cometh: Pope Francis Warmly Welcomes Top Islamic Cleric To The Vatican
    When Pope Francis met with Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb on Monday, he told him that “our meeting is the message“.  So precisely what kind of “message” was Pope Francis attempting to convey?  Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb is the Grand Imam of Cairo’s Al-Azhar Mosque, and some have described him as “the highest figure in Sunni Islam“.  The Daily Mail said that the meeting between these two men was a “historic bid to reopen dialogue between the two churches”, and as you will see below this is yet another in a long series of attempts by Pope Francis to build bridges between Catholicism and various other faiths.  In the end, what are we to make of all of this?  Could it be possible that Pope Francis is laying the groundwork for the “super world church” and the coming one world religion that David Wilkerson and so many others have warned about? Pope Francis made sure that when he embraced Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb there would be plenty of reporters there to document the moment.  The following is an excerpt from a Daily Mail article entitled “Pope embraces grand imam at historic Vatican meeting in a bid to bring the Catholic and Muslim churches together“…
  • The Market Has Barely Corrected — And That’s A Problem
    The S&P 500 index closed last Friday at exactly 2,052.32 points. This means that for the year, the equities benchmark has only gained 0.6%. In other words, this is a horizontal market. Fundamentally, the blue chips have been stymied by a very tough earnings season. In particular, the laggard that is the retail sector continues to contradict data that the economy is in a recovery mode. Internationally, China’s slowdown — both in their exports as well as in their consumer market — has dragged the global economy. But a little appreciated technical factor may be foretelling a sharp correction in the major indices.
  • Big Banks Get More Protection But Not Their Clients
    We have explained how the next worldwide financial crisis will be solved by looting savers’ bank accounts, in order to save the big banks. The European Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (BRRD) shall take care of that, and the idea is gaining ground in other countries. This will to protect big banks come what may, even if it means ruining their clients, reached a new phase. In the United States the Fed just allowed a defaulting bank to keep its clients’ collateral. In other words, when a fund, such as a hedge fund, transacts with a bank on derivatives, it must put up a guarantee toward said bank, some sort of “collateral”, generally Treasuries, a recognised and liquid asset. This is quite normal since derivatives may generate losses, and the bank wants some insurance. But if that bank is about to implode, it will be allowed to keep that collateral, even though the transaction itself does not generate any losses! This is what the Fed just decided.
  • Saudi Arabia’s Economic Plan Shows It’s Just Not That Into OPEC
    Saudi Arabia, one of the founders of OPEC, is sounding the group’s death knell. The world’s biggest crude exporter has already undermined OPEC’s traditional role of managing supply, instead choosing to boost output to snatch market share from higher-cost producers, particularly U.S. shale drillers, and crashing prices in the process. Now, under the economic plan known as Vision 2030 promoted by the king’s powerful son, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the government is signaling it wants to wean the kingdom’s economy off oil revenue, lessening the need to manage prices. Moreover, the planned privatization of Saudi Arabian Oil Co. will make the nation the only member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries without full ownership of its national oil company.
  • We Have Entered The Looting Stage Of Capitalism — Paul Craig Roberts
    Having successfully used the EU to conquer the Greek people by turning the Greek “leftwing” government into a pawn of Germany’s banks, Germany now finds the IMF in the way of its plan to loot Greece into oblivion. The IMF’s rules prevent the organization from lending to countries that cannot repay the loan. The IMF has concluded on the basis of facts and analysis that Greece cannot repay. Therefore, the IMF is unwilling to lend Greece the money with which to repay the private banks. The IMF says that Greece’s creditors, many of whom are not creditors but simply bought up Greek debt at a cheap price in hopes of profiting, must write off some of the Greek debt in order to lower the debt to an amount that the Greek economy can service.
  • ALERT: Legend Pierre Lassonde Just Predicted Price Of Gold To Soar Above $10,000
    With the price of gold and silver pulling back and consolidating recent gains, today legendary Pierre Lassonde spoke with King World News and predicted for the first time ever that the price of gold will soar above $10,000. Lassonde is arguably the greatest company builder in the history of the mining sector.  He is past president of Newmont Mining, former chairman of the World Gold Council and current chairman of Franco Nevada.  Lassonde is one of the wealthiest, most respected individuals in the gold world, and as always King World News would like to thank him for sharing his wisdom with our global readers during this critical period in these markets.
  • 50-Year Veteran Warns This Twisted Fantasy Is About To Come To A Frightening End
    With the war in the gold and silver markets continuing to rage, today a 50-year market veteran warned this twisted fantasy is about to come to an end. John Embry:  “Eric, this Fantasyworld we are living in gets more ridiculous by the minute.  However, it is not terribly surprising when one considers the depth of the global systemic problems. I thought Egon’s KWN interview was exceptional and should be required reading for anyone who thinks what we are experiencing in markets today is sustainable. When one realizes the powers that be are essentially impotent beyond providing unlimited quantities of liquidity, issuing bogus economic statistics, and manipulating markets in order to create the impression that things are fine, one recognizes that investors can’t be too careful here.  The Dow’s powerful rally today just amps up the volatility for that index and a sharp increase in volatility often proceeds a major change in market direction.  So I think the stock market players best be careful.
  • PUBLIC WORRIED: A Staggering $100 Billion Has Flowed Out Of Stocks So Far This Year
    With continued uncertainty in global markets, two of the greats weighed in with their thoughts on what to expect next as nearly $100 billion has flowed out of the U.S. stock market so far this year. From Art Cashin:  On The Mortality Of Bull Markets – One of the key commentaries going around Wall Street these days begins with “Bulls markets don’t die of old age….” That is then followed by the speaker’s choice of bull market mortality, e.g. euphoria, etc. I wonder if bull markets might die of some other cause, like perhaps starvation. My friend and fellow trading veteran, Jim Brown over at Option Investors cites Bank of America in noting that “year to date equity outflows were approaching $100 billion“. Such outflows had been more than offset by corporate buybacks. Those have now slowed dramatically. Outflows should be watched carefully.
  • Here’s why (and how) the government will ‘borrow’ your retirement savings
    According to financial research firm ICI, total retirement assets in the Land of the Free now exceed $23 trillion. $7.3 trillion of that is held in Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). That’s an appetizing figure, especially for a government that just passed $19 trillion in debt and is in pressing need of new funding sources. Even when you account for all federal assets (like national parks and aircraft carriers), the government’s “net financial position” according to its own accounting is negative $17.7 trillion. And that number doesn’t include unfunded Social Security entitlements, which the government estimates is another $42 trillion. The US national debt has increased by roughly $1 trillion annually over the past several years.
  • Peak Petro-State – The Oil World In Chaos
    Pity the poor petro-states. Once so wealthy from oil sales that they could finance wars, mega-projects, and domestic social peace simultaneously, some of them are now beset by internal strife or are on the brink of collapse as oil prices remain at ruinously low levels. Unlike other countries, which largely finance their governments through taxation, petro-states rely on their oil and natural gas revenues. Russia, for example, obtains about 50% of government income that way; Nigeria, 60%; and Saudi Arabia, a whopping 90%. When oil was selling at $100 per barrel or above, as was the case until 2014, these countries could finance lavish government projects and social welfare operations, ensuring widespread popular support.  Now, with oil below $50 and likely to persist at that level, they find themselves curbing public spending and fending off rising domestic discontent or even incipient revolt.
  • 6 Giant Corporations Control The Media, And Americans Consume 10 Hours Of ‘Programming’ A Day
    If you allow someone to pump hours of “programming” into your mind every single day, it is inevitable that it is eventually going to have a major impact on how you view the world.  In America today, the average person consumes approximately 10 hours of information, news and entertainment a day, and there are 6 giant media corporations that overwhelmingly dominate that market.  In fact, it has been estimated that somewhere around 90 percent of the “programming” that we constantly feed our minds comes from them, and of course they are ultimately controlled by the elite of the world.  So is there any hope for our country as long as the vast majority of the population is continually plugging themselves into this enormous “propaganda matrix”?
  • A Spirit Of Violence And Civil Unrest Is Rising In America
    It was only a matter of time before our deeply divided nation was going to start coming apart at the seams.  Waves of anger, frustration, violence and civil unrest are starting to sweep across the United States, and political rallies for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump have become a focal point for releasing some of that energy.  The angry mob that threw rocks, bottles and burning T-shirts at police and Donald Trump supporters on Tuesday night wanted to get the attention of the national media, and they got it in droves.  Now that the election is less than five months away, this kind of scene is going to be repeated over and over, and this is something that I warned about back in March.  Millions upon millions of our young people have fully embraced the radical left, and they have already made it exceedingly clear that they are not afraid to use violence to advance their cause.
  • Criminal Bankers Threaten Entire World Economy-Helen Chaitman
    Helen Davis Chaitman was the lead attorney representing the victims of the $65 billion Bernie Madoff scam. Madoff had help form JP Morgan Chase Bank, and what she found out was stunning.  Chaitman explains, “JP Morgan Chase was the subject of a criminal complaint . . . it was charged with a criminal violation of the Bank Secrecy Act, which is a felony violation.  JP Morgan Chase disgorged a small percentage of the profits it made on the Madoff relationship, and the government called it quits.  Nobody was fired.  Nobody disgorged bonuses, they just went on doing other crimes.”
  • All Electronic Assets Wiped Out in Fall Crash
    Financial analyst Bix Weir has laid out a timeline for the next financial collapse that he says is underway. Bix explains, “It’s happening now, and it has been happening since the beginning of the year.  Some of the big things on the time line and one of the bigger things to watch is the Deutsche Bank (DB) implosion.  That’s going to be gigantic because Deutsche Bank is the largest derivative holder in the world.  Their stock is plummeting, and they are begging for tier 1 capital.  It’s all happening right now.  The question is what is the day that Deutsche Bank throws up its arms and says we’re insolvent?  We are many times insolvent, and that would just destroy the European markets.  It will also destroy the U.S. markets because our biggest banks are invested in the sovereign debt of European countries.  That’s how it is going to start, and I believe the end of the end will be the Deutsche Bank implosion. . . .This is why Deutsche Bank is paying huge interest rates now because they need to raise their tier 1 capital.  They have to raise tier 1 capital before they report for the second quarter.  They are in massive trouble.  Their tier 1 capital is being destroyed by all these losses and lawsuits.  Didn’t they lose $7 billion euros last year? . . . They need massive amounts of capital . . . and they are willing to pay 5% interest just to get past the second quarter. That’s the amazing thing. . . . Deutsche Bank is going to be gone by the end of the third quarter.”
  • As Boomers Retire, Mom-and-Pop Businesses Convert to Co-ops to Save Jobs
    Susanne Ward and her husband, Patrick Reilley, moved from California to Maine in 1992 with plans of starting their own business. They decided on a used bookstore and coffee house, as they felt both good coffee and good books were in short supply in their new neighborhood. Located in the city of Rockland, Rock City (named for the limestone quarries that fueled the city’s growth in the 1800s) became a focal point in town for the artistic crowd, but Ward and Reilley struggled to find quality coffee that was reasonably priced. Within three years, they’d moved into a bigger space that could house the bookstore, cafe, and a space to roast their own coffee blend, which they began wholesaling. In 1999, they opened a roastery a few blocks south of the cafe outside of Rockland’s historic district, producing and selling their blend, which also supplied Rock City.
  • After Losing $11 Billion on $9.4-billion Nokia Buy & Axing 27,650 Jobs, Microsoft Dumps Consumer Smartphones
    Microsoft entered the final-final or pre-final-final episode of its Nokia saga. Its press release on Wednesday explained that it would “streamline” its smartphone hardware business. It would throw in the towel on smartphones for consumers and try to carve out a niche in corporate smartphones. It would be accompanied by more bloodletting. With its usual big-money genius, Microsoft had acquired Nokia’s mobile-phone business and patents In September 2013. Nokia’s credit rating was junk. Its market share had collapsed. It had lost over $4 billion the prior year. But its smartphones were using the Windows Phones operating system. The original terms of the deal called for a purchase price of $5.4 billion. This soon ballooned to a new purchase price of $7.2 billion. To make the deal go down better, Microsoft promised $600 million in annual cost savings within 18 months.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

Latest News Articles – May 26, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From May 20, 2016 to May 26, 2016:

  • This S&P 500 Death Cross’ Could Be The Real Deal
    Not all “death crosses” are created equal. In a note to clients, Intermarket Strategy Ltd. Chief Executive and Strategist Ashraf Laidi points out that the S&P 500’s 50-week moving average is falling below its 100-week moving average. This “statistically significant” death cross has only happened twice is the past two decades, Laidi points out. The first took place in 2001 and was followed by a 37 percent decline in the index, while the second pattern occurred in 2008 and preceded a 48 percent drop. With investors already growing increasingly nervous about prospects for equities, a death cross of grave proportions could give extra reason for caution.
  • Red Ponzi Update——-Gambling Like Never Before
    In the heyday of its incredible credit and construction boom, China was building two world-scale utility plants each week and opening up a new airport every day. Economic fiction writers like Goldman’s Jim O’Neill, chief propagator of the BRICs myth, declared the Red Ponzi to be the very second coming of capitalism. Now, by contrast, a Chinese billionaire goes missing practically every day, as a recent Washington Post article explained: That’s what happened last year when China’s richest man — at least on paper — lost half of his wealth in less than half an hour. It turned out that his company Hanergy may well just be Enron with Chinese characteristics: Its stock could only go up as long as it was borrowing money, and it could only borrow money as long as its stock was going up. Those kind of things work until they don’t.
  • Foreign Central Banks Jettisoning US Debt at Alarming Pace; Buying Gold
    Continuing a trend that started last year, central banks around the world are dumping US debt at a record pace. Central banks sold off a net $17 billion in US Treasury bonds in March. Sales set a record in January, hitting $57 billion. China, Russia, and Brazil led the way, each dumping at least $1 billion in US debt in March alone. So far in 2016, global central banks have jettisoned $123 billion in US debt. Last year, they sold off $226 billion. According to the Treasury Department, central banks are selling US Treasuries at a pace not seen since at least 1978.
  • Undeniable Evidence That The Real Economy Is Already In Recession
    You are about to see a chart that is undeniable evidence that we have already entered a major economic slowdown. In the “real economy”, stuff is bought and sold and shipped around the country by trucks, railroads and planes.  When more stuff is being bought and sold and shipped around the country, the “real economy” is growing, and when less stuff is being bought and sold and shipped around the country, the “real economy” is shrinking. I know that might sound really basic, but I want everyone to be on the same page as we proceed in this article. Just because stock prices are artificially high right now does not mean that the U.S. economy is in good shape.  In fact, there was a stock rally at this exact time of the year in 2008 even though the underlying economic fundamentals were rapidly deteriorating.  We all remember what happened later that year, so we should not exactly be rejoicing that precisely the same pattern that we witnessed in 2008 is happening again right in front of our eyes.
  • 10 Stunning Parallels Between The United States And Nazi Germany
    Most Americans may not like to hear this, but the truth is that modern day America very closely resembles Nazi Germany.  If you initially recoiled when you read the headline to this article, that is understandable.  After all, most of us were raised to deeply love this country.  But I would ask you to consider the evidence that I have compiled before you pass judgment on the matter.  Most citizens of this nation know that something has gone deeply wrong, and I would suggest that just like the Nazis, all of the pageantry and beauty in our society masks an evil which has grown to a level that is almost unspeakable.  And just like the Germans, we don’t do ourselves any favors by turning a blind eye to what is going on.  The following are 10 stunning parallels between the United States and Nazi Germany…
  • Member Of Congress: It’s Easy ‘To Manipulate A Nation Of Naive, Self-Absorbed Sheep’
    You may not believe the incredible things that one member of Congress is saying about the corruption of our political system and the gullibility of the American people.  In a brand new book entitled “The Confessions of Congressman X“, one anonymous member of the U.S. House of Representatives confesses that he hardly ever reads the bills that he votes on, that his main job is to get reelected, and that it is “far easier than you think to manipulate a nation of naive, self-absorbed sheep who crave instant gratification”.  This book is being published by Mill City Press, and it is being billed as “a devastating inside look at the dark side of Congress as revealed by one of its own.”  I don’t know if you would classify this anonymous member of Congress as “brave” since he does not wish to reveal his identity, but the things that he is admitting confirm suspicions that many of us have had for a very long time.
  • Even Target Isn’t Immune to Spending Slowdown Rippling Through Retail
    Target (TGT) had a solid start to the year compared with struggling apparel retailers in the malls, but it’s still not immune to the broader consumer spending slowdown. The discount retailer signaled Wednesday that its second quarter may have started more sluggishly because of tepid consumer demand for apparel and the impact of protests over its stance on the use of women’s bathrooms. Second-quarter sales may drop as much as 2% from the prior year. Earnings should be $1 to $1.20 a share, compared with Wall Street estimates of $1.19.
  • Venezuela: A Prepper’s Nightmare Come to Life
    Two years ago, Venezuela was a normal functioning nation, relatively speaking of course. It was by no means a free country, but the people still had a standard of living that was higher than most developing nations. Venezuelans could still afford the basic necessities of life, and a few luxuries too. They could send their children to school and expect them to receive a reasonably good education, and they could go to the hospital and expect to be effectively treated with the same medical standards you’d find in a developed nation. They could go to the grocery store and buy whatever they needed, and basic government services like law enforcement and infrastructure maintenance worked fairly well. The system was far from perfect, but it worked for the most part. However, this standard of living was a mirage. Venezuela was and still is a leftist socialist nation, and the only thing propping it up was their glut of oil reserves and $100 per barrel prices. The state owned those resources, and they provided so much wealth that even Venezuela’s highly inefficient command economy could provide everything the people needed. But socialist systems do not by their nature, respond well to shock and disruptions. They’re not flexible.
  • 12 Signs That A Cloud Of Insanity Has Descended On The Land
    What in the world is happening to America?  Recently, I was asked to describe what we are watching happen to our nation.  After thinking about it, I have come to the conclusion that it is almost as if a “cloud of insanity” has descended upon the United States and much of the rest of the western world.  From our top leaders on down, people are engaged in incredibly self-destructive behavior and are making extremely irrational decisions.  Some would describe it as being given over to a depraved mind, and I would have to agree.  It is almost as if some sort of severe form of mental illness were rapidly spreading through the air and infecting everyone.  Virtually every day I am immersed in news and current events, and it can be difficult to shock me after all this time.  But lately, there have been quite a few stories that have stunned even me.
  • The US is concerned about a potential meltdown in Venezuela, destroying its oil sector
    The United States is increasingly concerned about the potential for an economic and political meltdown in Venezuela, spurred by fears of a debt default, growing street protests and deterioration of its oil sector, U.S. intelligence officials said on Friday. In a bleak assessment of Venezuela’s worsening crisis, the senior officials expressed doubt that unpopular leftist President Nicolas Maduro would allow a recall referendum this year, despite opposition-led protests demanding a vote to decide whether he stays in office.
  • Fed officials Williams, Lockhart stress that June meeting is ‘live’
    The U.S. central bank could raise interest rates as soon as June, two Federal Reserve officials said Tuesday. Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart and San Francisco Fed President John Williams, in a joint appearance at a lunch sponsored by the news site Politico, said that the decision on whether to raise rates at the June 14-15 meeting depends on the data. June “certainly could be a meeting at which action could be taken,” Lockhart said. “I think it is a little early at second-quarter data to draw a conclusion, so I am at this stage inconclusive about how I am going to be thinking about June, but I wouldn’t take it off the table,” Lockhart said. He said he assumes there will be two to three rate hikes this year.
  • A Coming Event That Is Going To Shock The World
    Last year one of the legends in the business warned of a coming event that is going to shock the world.  How close is this event to unfolding? The Disease – Deflation And A World Drowning In Debt Richard Russell warned last year:  “The world’s balance sheet is heavily skewed toward debt and loans. On the asset side of the balance sheet we have gold and silver currencies. Cure That Will Shock The World – Reset Gold To $5,000 or $10,000! What would make the balance sheet look saner and increase the asset side? It would be to reset gold to a much higher price. Why is it that nobody is writing about this? Resetting the price of gold to $5,000 or $10,000 an ounce would be a mighty step against deflation.
  • Now Is Not a Normal Time: Central Banks Buying Piles of Gold
    These are not normal economic times. Interest rates have remained artificially low, plunging into negative territory in many places. Central banks continue to inflate the money supply with quantitative easing. Some policy-makers have even floated the idea of helicopter money. Worldwide money printing is reportedly approaching $100 trillion. There is no end to this crazy monetary policy in sight. This led billionaire investor Stanley Druckenmiller to recommend selling US stocks to buy gold. Well-known hedge fund manager Paul Singer said the recent surge in gold is just the beginning. And Bank of America said gold is entering a new and long bull market.
  • ICBC buys Barclays’ US$80bn London gold vault
    ICBC Standard Bank is buying Barclays’ London precious metals vault, giving the Chinese bank the capacity to store gold worth more than US$80bn in the secret location. The vault is one of the largest in Europe, with a capacity to hold 2,000 tonnes of gold, silver, platinum and palladium. It has been operational since 2012. ICBC Standard Bank said on Monday it has signed an agreement to buy the vaulting business and transfer the associated contracts, subject to consent. The deal is expected to complete in July. ICBC Standard Bank specialises in commodities, fixed income, currencies and equities and was formed in February 2015 when Industrial and Commercial Bank of China bought a 60% stake in Standard Bank’s London-based global markets business. Neither ICBC Standard Bank nor Barclays disclosed the financial terms of the deal.
  • BREAKING: Gerald Celente Just Issued One Of His Most Important Trend Alerts Of 2016!
    Today top trends forecaster Gerald Celente just issued one of his most important Trend Alerts of 2016 exclusively through King World News! Gerald Celente:  Oil is on a tear. Gold is shining and the global equity markets remain volatile. After plunging from $115 a barrel in June 2014, to hitting a 52 week low at $27.10 this past January, Brent Crude, hitting a seven month high on Tuesday, is now flirting at $50 a barrel.
  • Kill TTIP Now — Paul Craig Roberts 
    In his May 9, 2016, speech to European medical professionals, Michael Hudson points out that the result of TTIP for Europe will be the privatization of health care systems with the associated much higher costs. Hudson’s accurate description of TTIP shows that politically powerful corporations have gained the power in Western “democracies” to sacrifice the welfare of all populations to corporate greed for profit regardless of the cost to peoples, countries, and societies. The evil of American “democratic capitalism” is total and irredeemable. TTIP gives corporations unaccountable power over governments and peoples. The corporations must be slapped down hard, fiercely regulated, and forced by threat of long prison sentences to serve the public interest, and not the incomes of the executives and shareholders who comprise the One Percent.
  • Venezuela scrambles to head off collapse
    With the nation on the brink of collapse, Venezuelan officials Monday were scrambling to keep the country afloat. But a plunge in crude prices, rampant inflation and a currency crash has left the once oil-rich nation with few options to head off political and social chaos. Opposition leaders over the weekend protested a 60-day state of emergency declared by President Nicolás Maduro on Friday night, based what he called plots from Venezuela and the U.S. to subvert him. With the economy in freefall, hungry mobs have looted food stories, power and water are in short supply and hospitals are unable to care for newborns. “You can hear the ice cracking. You know there’s a crisis coming,” a U.S. official told a group of reporters Friday, according to published reports. That crisis has been building for years, but the pace of Venezuela’s decline has worsened in recent weeks. Mobs have stolen food and clothing amid shortages of many basic consumer products.
  • KFC restaurant in China is now staffed by chicken-loving robots
    We are living in a brave new world where robots are encroaching on our jobs, our lives, and our safety. Or, at the very least – they’re readily available to serve us fried chicken. KFC has become one of the first restaurants to make use of voice activated robots in its store. The automaton, known as Dumi, is located at a concept store in Shanghai – and its creators say that it’s clever enough to handle orders from customers, and even adjustments when diners change their minds.
  • When They Killed JFK They Killed America — Paul Craig Roberts
    In the JFK administration I was a White House Fellow. In those days it was a much larger program than the small insider program it later became. President Kennedy’s intention was to involve many young Americans in government in order to keep idealism alive as a counter to the material interests of lobby groups. I don’t know if the program still exists. If it does, the idealism that was its purpose is long gone. President John F. Kennedy was a classy president. In my lifetime there has not been another like him. Indeed, today he would be impossible. Conservatives and Republicans did not like him, because he was thoughtful. Their favorite weapon against him was their account of his love life, which according to them involved Mafia molls and Marilyn Monroe. They must have worked themselves into fits of envy over Marilyn Monroe, the hottest woman of her time. Unlike most presidents, Kennedy was able to break with the conventional thinking of the time. From his experience with the Bay of Pigs, Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Joint Chiefs’ “Operaton Northwoods,” Kennedy concluded that CIA Director Allen Dulles and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Lemnitzer were both crazed by anti-communism and were a danger to Americans and the world.
  • Investors could yank as much as $500B from hedge funds in 2016
    The $3.2 trillion hedge fund industry, reeling from its worst quarter for withdrawals since the financial crisis, is bracing for more pain. Hedge funds, which watched in horror as investors yanked $15 billion from the funds in the first three months of the year, could see that figure climb to $500 billion by the end of the year, one pension investor said. “We have all the leverage,” one investor said, echoing a familiar refrain at this year’s SkyBridge Alternative, or SALT, conference, here.
  • Gold Prices: One Big Reason Why $2,000 Gold Could Be Possible
    Something just happened in the gold market that suggests gold prices are severely undervalued. Don’t expect to read this in the mainstream financial publications. Gold buyers are increasing in numbers. You see, in 2013, when the precious metal’s prices were plummeting (for all the wrong reasons as I see it), the mainstream media told investors that buyers would be running from gold. Big investment companies said gold prices would fall further. They were all wrong. The data proves them wrong.
  • Warren Buffett: “It’s a huge advantage NOT to have a lot of money…”
    Warren Buffet has famously said many times that the vast majority of investors shouldn’t bother picking stocks. Instead, he’s advised everyone from Lebron James to his own children to simply buy an S&P index fund and hold it ‘for the next 50 years.’ He’s probably right; most people probably should just buy an S&P index fund. But not because it’s a superior investment. It’s because most people simply aren’t educated about business, finance, and investing. Proper financial education isn’t taught in public schools, so for a lot of folks, investing is an alien concept. Learning about investment means seeking an independent education. A real education. And it’s amazing what a real education can do. Whereas the average person is relegated to an insipid index fund, an educated investor can generate phenomenal wealth and prosperity. Buffett himself is a great example of this.
  • How safe are top US banks?
    Recently I was having drinks with a friend of mine who is an ultra-successful US real estate developer and investor. He told me that his team had just closed a large real estate transaction worth hundreds of millions of dollars, and they got a sweetheart deal from the bank. The bank is loaning them almost all of the money at an interest rate of around 2%. But it gets better. If the Federal Reserve raises interest rates, he has the option of locking in the rate that he has now… so his interest rate will basically never go up. But if the Federal Reserve lowers interest rates, the rate that he pays on the loan will go down. In other words, he got an amazing deal from the bank… and it might even get better. But it will never get worse. Now, this is obviously fantastic for the borrower. But for the bank, this is an absolute sucker’s bet. There’s almost zero upside.
  • Wendy’s Turns to Self-Serve Kiosks to Offset Higher Labor Costs
    In a move meant to offset higher minimum wages taking effect in states across the country, fast-food giant Wendy’s will be offering self-serve kiosks to many of its franchisees later this year. Though some reports suggested the kiosks would be made available at all Wendy’s by the end of 2016, spokesperson Bob Bertini says it will be up to individual franchisees whether or not they install the kiosks. Below, the statement from Wendy’s in full: The majority of Wendy’s restaurants are franchise-operated. We are in pilot now with self-service order kiosks, which we expect to make available for installation by our franchisees later in 2016. Whether they choose to do so will be up to them. Earlier news reports were not quite accurate. We did not say kiosks would be available at every restaurant by end of year. We do continue to invest in technology to help mitigate the inflation we are seeing on the wage front. In an earnings call on Wednesday, company president Todd Penegor said that “managing labor pressure” will be critical “to make sure that we provide a new QSR [quick-service restaurant] experience but at traditional QSR prices.”
  • Scenes From The Venezuela Apocalypse: “Countless Wounded” After 5,000 Loot Supermarket Looking For Food
    Over the last several years we have documented with clockwork regularity Venezuela’s collapse into failed state status, which was cemented several weeks ago when news hit that “Venezuela had officially run out of money to print new money.”  At that point the best one could do was merely to step back and watch as local society and civilization turned on itself, unleashing what would ultimately turn into Venezuela’s own, sad apocalypse. As we wrote then these are simply hungry Venezuelans protesting that their children are dying from lack of food and medicine and that they do not have enough water or electricity. As AgainstCronyCapitalism added, this is a country with more oil than Saudi Arabia, and the government has stolen all the money and now they bottleneck peaceful protesters and threaten them with bombs (or haul them to prison and torture them). As pure desperation has set in, crime has becomes inevitable.
  • This Won’t End Well – Business Inventories Signal Recession Imminent
    Autos & parts inventories-to-sales ratios soared to 2.30x from 2.18x – levels that have only been higher during the financial crisis. This, combined with a rise in clothing inventories to sales, held overall business inventories at their highest to sales since the crisis and deep in pre-recessionary territory. Retail inventories rose 1.0% MoM despite a 0.3% drop in sales (with motor vehicles inventories up 2.3% as sales tumbled 3.2%) leaving the inventories to sales ratio at cycle highs… Simply put, this won’t end well.
  • Tim Price: Why I’m voting to leave the European Union
    On 23 June 2016, this British citizen will be voting to leave the European Union. To me it’s clear: the EU has not only become too big for its own good, it’s too big to do hardly anything good. Back in 1975 when the UK first confirmed membership in the EU (when it was called the European Economic Community), it made sense. Britain has always thrived on international trade, and the EU promised more trade. But that’s not what happened. The EU didn’t turn into a peaceful, efficient, multi-national trading bloc that enables commerce and prosperity. Rather it has become an ever-expanding, unaccountable bureaucracy ruling over vastly disparate nations who are increasingly at odds with one another. And it is precisely the size of this Leviathan that’s the problem… something that was first identified several decades ago by economist Leopold Kohr.
  • Oil Inventories Drop by 3.4 Million Barrels as EIA Fudge Factor Swings by 664,000 Barrels Per Day
    This Wednesday’s Petroleum Status reports for the week ending May 6th from the Energy Information Administration indicated that our crude oil production fell a bit once again and that our imports of oil were virtually unchanged, while US refineries saw another modest increase in the amount of oil that they used. Production of crude oil from US wells fell for the 15th time in the past 16 weeks, dropping by 23,000 barrels per day, from an average of 8,825,000 barrels per day during the week ending April 29th to an average of 8,802,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 6th.  That’s now 6.1% below the 9,373,000 barrels per day we were producing during the first week of May last year, and 8.4% below the 9,610,000 barrel per day peak of our oil production that was hit during the week ending June 10th of last year.
  • Working 60 Hours A Week At 3 Part-Time Jobs And Still Living Paycheck To Paycheck
    What can you do when you are working 60 hours a week at three part-time jobs and it is still not enough?  In America today, many people have taken on more than one job in a desperate attempt to make ends meet, but they still come up short at the end of the month.  And those that are actually working are the fortunate ones, because in one out of every five families in the United States nobody has a job.  There are more than 100 million working age Americans that are currently not employed (yes this is true), and as I pointed out yesterday, job cut announcements by major firms are currently running 24 percent ahead of last year’s pace.  But unemployment is just part of the overall problem.  There is this growing misconception out there that if you “have a job” that you must be doing okay.  Unfortunately for the growing number of “working poor” in America, that is not true at all.
  • Undeniable Evidence That The Real Economy Is Already In Recession Mode
    You are about to see a chart that is undeniable evidence that we have already entered a major economic slowdown.  In the “real economy”, stuff is bought and sold and shipped around the country by trucks, railroads and planes.  When more stuff is being bought and sold and shipped around the country, the “real economy” is growing, and when less stuff is being bought and sold and shipped around the country, the “real economy” is shrinking.  I know that might sound really basic, but I want everyone to be on the same page as we proceed in this article.  Just because stock prices are artificially high right now does not mean that the U.S. economy is in good shape.  In fact, there was a stock rally at this exact time of the year in 2008 even though the underlying economic fundamentals were rapidly deteriorating.  We all remember what happened later that year, so we should not exactly be rejoicing that precisely the same pattern that we witnessed in 2008 is happening again right in front of our eyes.
  • JP Morgan: Gold Entering a New and Long Bull Market
    Are Wall Street banks finally getting on the right side of the gold trade? In an interview with CNBC, Solita Marcelli, global head of fixed income at JP Morgan, revealed that the Wall Street investment bank is recommending that clients position themselves for a “new and very long” bull market in gold. She explained that negative interest rates around the world are making gold a more attractive investment. Since gold is a non-yielding asset and has minimal storage costs, it actually compares quite favorably with the increasing number of negative yield bonds on the global stage. It has a positive carry. Solita suggested that central banks might consider diversifying their reserves into gold with the fear that they might be getting negative rates on their existing holdings. Gold is a great portfolio hedge in an environment where world government bonds rates are at historical lows. It may, in fact, replace government bonds as the next risk off trade.
  • Fed’s Yellen says negative rates would need careful consideration
    Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said Tuesday the Fed wouldn’t rule out using negative interest rates to boost the economy but she cautioned such a move would have to be carefully studied. “While I would not completely rule out the use of negative interest rates in some future very adverse scenario, policymakers would need to consider a wide range of issues before employing this tool in the United States, including the potential for unintended consequences,” she wrote in a letter to Rep. Brad Sherman (D., Calif.) and released by his office. Yellen also wrote she expected the economy would strengthen and inflation would return to the Fed’s 2% target “over time.”
  • Watch Venezuela, Because Food Shortages, Looting And Economic Collapse Are Coming To America Too
    The full-blown economic collapse that is happening in Venezuela right now is a preview of what Americans will be experiencing in the not too distant future.  Just a few years ago, most Venezuelans could never have imagined that food shortages would become so severe that people would literally hunt dogs and cats for food.  But as you will see below, this is now taking place.  Sadly, this is what the endgame of socialism looks like.  When an all-powerful government is elevated far above all other institutions in society and radical leftists are given the keys to the kingdom, this is the result.  Food shortages, looting and rampant violent crime have all become part of daily life in Venezuela, and we all need to watch as this unfolds very carefully, because similar scenarios will soon be playing out all over the planet.
  • Bayer lodges $62bn cash bid to acquire Monsanto
    German chemical and pharmaceutical giant Bayer has announced a $62bn (£43bn; €55bn) all-cash takeover bid for US seeds company Monsanto. The $122-per-share offer represents a 37% premium on Monsanto’s closing share price of $89 on 9 May, before Bayer formally tabled its written takeover proposal. The Leverkusen-headquartered firm said in a statement on 23 May that the merger would create a “global agriculture leader” if it goes through. Monsanto is one of the world’s largest producers of genetically engineered seeds and has courted controversy in the past due to its lobbying of government agencies in support of GM crops.
  • Unemployment Claims Spike Again As We Get More Scientific Evidence The Middle Class Is Shrinking
    As the U.S. economy slows down, we would expect to start to see evidence of this in the employment numbers, and that is precisely what has begun to happen.  During the week before last, initial claims for unemployment benefits jumped by 17,000, which was the largest increase that we had seen in over a year.  Well, last week we witnessed an even bigger spike.  Seasonally adjusted initial claims shot up 20,000 more to a total of 294,000.  Of course it makes perfect sense that more Americans are applying for unemployment benefits, because firms are laying people off at a much faster pace these days.  Just a couple days ago I reported that job cut announcements at major firms are running 24 percent higher this year compared to the first four months of last year.  So we should fully expect that the number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits will continue to accelerate.
  • Medicare at age 76 EVERYONE needs to read this.
    If you don’t read this, and do nothing about it, don’t complain when it affects you or your loved ones!  This is the second Judge to have read the Obama Care document comments.  More highlights of Nancy’s “pass it and then find out what’s in the bill”!  Show this to everyone nearing the ripe old age of 76.  These are just a few of the things that we Seniors are going to have to deal with which started in 2014.  Even far left Democrats will not like these.
  • Fed to delay rate hike until September on tame inflation outlook: Reuters poll
    The U.S. Federal Reserve will likely wait until September before raising interest rates again, stretching to nine months the time since its first hike in nearly a decade, as it waits for clear signs inflation is picking up, a Reuters poll found. This is the second time this year that economists have delayed their rate-hike expectations, casting doubt on the likelihood the Fed will be able to deliver two rate hikes this year as the U.S. Presidential election in November could make further policy changes sensitive. Almost a third of more than 90 economists in the poll still expect the Fed will raise its federal funds rate to 0.50-0.75 percent in June, suggesting the less than 8 percent chance markets have assigned to that may be too low.
  • Fiscal stimulus: Industry titans indicate a fundamental shift
    Calls for fiscal stimulus Joined by Bill Gross, Carl Icahn, Jamie Dimon and Larry Fink. When the largest investors across divergent sectors all reach the same conclusion at roughly the same time, chances are much higher than average that a fundamental shift is underway. With the voices of titans Bill Gross, probably one of the world’s most savvy bond investors, Jamie Dimon, the face and voice of banking, Carl Icahn, the iconic hedge fund investor and Larry Fink of Blackrock – the poster child of private equity all in unison on fiscal stimulus, you can be sure of one thing: fiscal stimulus is about to begin. What is fiscal stimulus? Essentially it means that governments take the money they’ve amassed thanks to monetary stimulus, and spend it on infrastructure development.
  • Canada’s banks to set aside more funds to cover toxic oil loans
    Canada’s biggest banks are expected to set aside more funds to cover bad loans to the oil and gas sector, eating into their profits when they announce second quarter results next week, analysts say. Royal Bank of Canada Bank of Nova Scotia, Bank of Montreal and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce all reported an increase in losses from oil sector loans that turned sour in the first quarter. Although oil prices have improved since February, the banks’ second-quarter results will show the impact of credit lines to oil firms being tightened to reflect lower oil prices, a move that could lead some to default on their loans, analysts say.
  • Investors Piling into Gold; Demand in Record Territory
    Gold demand hit near record levels in the first quarter of 2016. Despite the price rising nearly 17%, the demand for gold surged 21% in the opening quarter of the year. It was the second largest quarter on record, according to the World Gold Council. Gold demand hit 1,290 tons in Q1. Concerns about economic instability and an uncertain financial landscape drove the increase. Investors flocked to gold, and ETFs saw a huge inflow of the yellow metal. Total investment demand hit 618 tons, up 122% from the same period in 2015.
  • Amerigeddon: Are You Ready For The Chaos That Will Ensue When The Power Grid Is Brought Down?
    What would America look like with absolutely no electricity?  Could you survive in a world with no lights, no cell phones, no computers, no televisions, no ATMs, no cash registers and no refrigerators?  Such a world is not as far away as you might think.  A very powerful nuclear blast directly over the center of the continental United States could potentially fry electronic equipment from coast to coast, and it would take months or even years to fully restore power.  During that time, the entire country would be plunged into chaos and experts tell us that tens of millions of Americans would die.  But even if we are never attacked by a nuclear weapon in that manner, scientists assure us that it is inevitable that a massive electromagnetic blast from the sun will produce a similar result someday anyway.  In fact, back in 1859 a giant solar storm that came to be known as “the Carrington Event” fried telegraph machines all across North America and Europe.  If a similar event happened today, life as we know it would be brought to an abrupt halt, and chaos would ensue from coast to coast.
  • U.S. Consumer Comfort Drops to Five-Month Low on Economic Views
    Consumer confidence fell last week to a five-month low as Americans became more downbeat about the economy, Bloomberg Consumer Comfort data showed Thursday. Sentiment around personal finances and the buying climate were little changed after declining the previous week. Key Points: Consumer Comfort Index eased to 41.7 in the week ended May 8, the lowest since mid-December, from 42. Decrease was led by dimming views of the national economy, with that index sinking 2 points to 30.6, also the weakest in five months. Americans’ views of their finances were little changed at 55.4 after 55.3, while a measure of the buying climate climbed to 39.1 from 38.2.
  • U.S. jobless claims hit 14-month high; analysts blame Verizon strike
    The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose last week to a more than one-year high, but economists blamed striking telecommunications workers for the surge and said the data did not signal a deterioration in the overall labor market. Another report on Thursday showed import prices increased in April for a second straight month, suggesting the disinflationary impulse from a strong dollar and lower oil prices, which has helped to hold inflation well below the Federal Reserve’s 2 percent target, was fading. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 20,000 to a seasonally adjusted 294,000 for the week ended May 7, the highest level since late February 2015, the Labor Department said. It was the third consecutive week of increases in first-time applications for jobless benefits.
  • ECB Prepares to Expand its Racket, Markets Salivate
    A few weeks ago, few people had heard of the ECB’s Governing Council Member Vitas Vasiliauskas. In the last week that has all changed, thanks to a surreal interview Vasiliauskas gave to Bloomberg in which he described Europe’s central bankers, with apparent deadpan seriousness, as “magic people” endowed with limitless powers to shape Europe’s economic environment: “Markets say the ECB is done, their box is empty. But we are magic people. Each time we take something and give to the markets — a rabbit out of the hat.” It is arguably the most absurd — and honest — description by a central banker of the role of modern central banking in today’s economy. On Wednesday Vasiliauskas gave Reuters an eagerly anticipated follow-up interview. In it he waxed lyrical about the Eurozone’s rosy economic outlook. “The current situation is stable with positive perspectives,” Mr Vasiliauskas gushed. “So if you ask me what do you think about possible steps during the summer, my answer would be: nothing.”
  • These Charts Show the Truly Dismal State of Young People in Bailed-Out EU Countries
    The human aspects of the European crisis, such as the effects of horrific youth unemployment in some countries, have largely receded from the headlines that ECB potentate Mario Draghi rules with his beautifully concocted negative-interest-rate absurdity and his efforts to manipulate the financial markets. Lesser ECB figures also try to get into the headlines edgewise, including German Bundesbank president Jens Weidmann, but no one listens to him anymore. Yet, and despite Draghi’s bluster, the real problems in the EU, particularly in Greece, Portugal, Cyprus, and Spain, have not been solved – and I mean, not at all – as shown by the results of the big poll about young people in the EU. The survey, commissioned by the European Parliament and conducted by TNS opinion, led to an evocatively-titled report, “Most young Europeans feel marginalized by the crisis, says Eurobarometer poll.” For some countries, the results are outright horrifying. Young people are the future. They’re expected to make these countries function down the road.
  • More Monetary Stimulus on Deck for UK, But Officials Moving Cautiously Before EU Exit Vote
    In light of the economic malaise around the United Kingdom, the Bank of England may be releasing additional monetary stimulus in the near future. They will do this in response to increased unemployment rates and lack of private investing. But the BoE is waiting on a June 23 referendum in which Britain and will decide whether or not to leave the European Union before taking action. The BoE is worried about the possible negative economic consequences this decision will have on its economy. Businesses have already been putting investments on hold until after the vote is has been decided. Mark Carney, the governor of the bank of England and Chairman of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), said the pending vote on what has become known as Brexit is weighing on growth and clouding the economic outlook. The MPC voted to hold interest rates at a record-low 0.5% for the time being at its meeting Thursday.
  • 11 Signs That The U.S. Economy Is Rapidly Deteriorating Even As The Stock Market Soars
    We have seen this story before, and it never ends well.  From mid-March until early May 2008, a vigorous stock market rally convinced many investors that the market turmoil of late 2007 and early 2008 was over and that happy days were ahead for the U.S. economy.  But of course we all know what happened.  It turned out that the market downturns of late 2007 and early 2008 were just “foreshocks” of a much greater crash in late 2008.  The market surge in the spring of 2008 was just a mirage, and it masked rapidly declining economic fundamentals.  Well, the exact same thing is happening right now.  The Dow rose another 222 points on Tuesday, but meanwhile virtually every number that we are getting is just screaming that the overall U.S. economy is steadily falling apart.  So don’t be fooled by a rising stock market.  Just like in the spring of 2008, all of the signs are pointing to an avalanche of bad economic news in the months ahead.  The following are 11 signs that the U.S. economy is rapidly deteriorating…
  • Next Step for the US: Looks like Helicopter Money
    It just seems like human nature to ruin a good thing. As much as I am a strong proponent of free market capitalism, and against complex regulations and central planning, I understand government’s role in all this. Capitalism and democracy teamed up in the late 1700s to form the big bang in economics, or what I call “When Harry met Sally.” They’re opposites that balance each other – capitalism rewards people for their contributions, and democracy ensures that greed doesn’t take over. We took Adam Smith’s theory of the “invisible hand,” limited government and laissez faire politics… and combined it with Alexander Hamilton’s doctrine of a stronger government to enhance capitalism. We invested in common infrastructures, established a central bank with uniform monetary policies, and implemented financial and legal systems – things free market capitalism can’t do alone. That’s why, together, these two ideologies complement each other – so long as they don’t get in each other’s way.
  • Recession Watch: Freight Volume Drops, Worst Level since 2010
    Freight shipments by truck and rail in the US fell 4.9% in April from the beaten-down levels of April 2015, according to the Cass Transportation Index, released on Friday. It was the worst April since 2010, which followed the worst March since 2010. In fact, shipment volume over the four months this year was the worst since 2010. This is no longer statistical “noise” that can easily be brushed off. The Cass Freight Index is based on “more than $26 billion” in annual freight transactions by “hundreds of large shippers,” regardless of mode of transportation, including by truck and rail. It does not cover bulk commodities, such as oil and coal and thus is not impacted by the collapsing oil and coal shipments. The index is focused on consumer packaged goods, food, automotive, chemical, OEM, heavy equipment, and retail. In a similar vein, the Association of American Railroads reported last week that loads of containers and trailers fell 7.5% in April year-over-year. “Intermodal” is a direct competitor to trucking. Combined, they’re a measure of the goods-based economy.
  • Now ECB chief admits European banks ARE facing ‘challenges’ amid meltdown fears
    THE head of the European Central Bank (ECB) has admitted some of the eurozone’s biggest banks are facing difficult times ahead amid fears of a new financial crisis in Europe. Last week investors dumped shares in top German and French banks Deutsche and Societe Generale amid concerns over the firms’ solvency. Today Mario Draghi said: “Clearly, some parts of the banking sector in the euro area still face a number of challenges.” The central banker highlighted the litigation and restructuring costs faced by some of Europe’s banks, on top of ‘bad’ loans sitting on their books. Mr Draghi said the situation had blown up over worries that banks in Europe could struggle in an economy with lower growth and lower interest rates.
  • Gold’s Best Quarter in 30 Years Is Just the Beginning
    Last week, we reported that billionaire investor Stanley Druckenmiller is publicly advising investors to sell United States stocks and buy gold. Druckenmiller is now joined in his gold recommendation by an equally legendary hedge fund manager – Paul Singer. In a client letter at the end of April, Singer wrote: “It makes a great deal of sense to own gold. Other investors may be finally starting to agree. Investors have increasingly started processing the fact that the world’s central bankers are completely focused on debasing their currencies… We believe the March quarter’s price action could represent something closer to the beginning of such a move than to the end.”
  • Research Affiliates: Where’s The Beef? ‘Lies, Damned Lies, And Statistics’
    Key Points: American households, pinched by rising prices at a rate higher than headline inflation, have generally not benefited from the unrelenting stimulus of quantitative easing and zero interest rates, and instead have experienced a decade of zero growth in income and spending power. The high valuations and low interest rates born of accommodative monetary policy lower forward-looking returns for both the wealthy and the middle class, but the middle class, who must invest today to prepare for retirement tomorrow, suffers relatively more. When the Fed eventually steps away from overt market interventions, capital market valuations should revert to more normal (i.e., lower) levels, which would bring with them more sensible forward-looking returns.
  • Chinese Government Now Fretting about Auto Industry
    Overcapacity weakened the US auto industry before the Financial Crisis, and destroyed it during the crisis, with two of the Big Three automakers, some of the biggest component makers, and numerous smaller component makers going bankrupt. It was during the bankruptcy process that the industry restructured, laid of hundreds of thousands of people, shuttered and shed plants, mauled creditors, destroyed stockholders, and finally got rid of overcapacity. Overcapacity is devastating to the industry, employees, investors, and creditors. But it feels good on the way up. And now the Chinese auto industry has that problem. The automakers active in China, including all global brands, have had no patience with doubters, and announcements of new assembly plants being built in different parts of China became a near weekly ritual.
  • Janus Capital’s Bill Gross Peeks into the Future and Sees Money Falling from the Sky
    Bill Gross took a peek into the future in his most recent Monthly Investment Outlook for Janus Capital, and he saw money raining from the sky. Gross said he believes the structural changes currently occurring in the US economy will ultimately lead to so-called helicopter money. Of course, choppers wouldn’t literally drop cash from the sky. But helicopter money is the ultimate stimulus program. The newly printed cash goes directly into the hands of the people themselves. Basically, the government hands out money – or figuratively drops it from a helicopter.
  • Donald Trump’s Glorious Threat To Default On The National Debt Is Just The Conventional Wisdom
    Donald Trump has pointed out that if the US got into trouble with the national debt then it would be possible to negotiate that debt down. Perhaps buy it back at a discount, negotiate somehow with the holders of the debt so that they will agree to take less than the full amount they are owed. This has of course had all sorts of people up in arms: but the glory of this is that The Donald is exactly correct here, even if we usually prefer that people don’t say so. To prove this point I would mention just four words: Puerto Rico, Argentina, Greece. For what is it that all right thinking people, all financiers, bien pensants and politicians have been calling for in those three cases? That there’s too much debt and thus those who lent the money should be paid back something less than the amount they lent. And one can see a certain similarity between those who argue so and those who are the most horrified at Donald Trump in general. Yet all Trump is actually giving voice to here is the entirely conventional wisdom. When a government owes more than it can pay then we have a sovereign default. Something that can be better or worse managed, entirely true, but this is what we do. In fact, we usually get the IMF in to help it happen, recognising that firstly this is what has to happen and secondly it’s better if it’s properly managed.
  • Global War Tensions Rise, Economy Getting Worse and MSM Totally Unfair to Trump
    There was a new missile defense system installed in Romania. The U.S. says it is to protect Europe from an attack from a “rogue state.”  Russia says this new missile defense site is a “direct threat to global and regional security.”  Russia also says this is a “destructive action.”  One Russian commentator said the missile deployment “. . . might even accelerate the slippery slope to nuclear war in a crisis.” Meanwhile, there is a new face-off in the South China Sea between China and the U.S. Navy. The U.S. says that China is making “excessive maritime claims” in important international waters used for massive amounts of shipping.  China disagrees and says its island building is fine and says the presence of U.S. Navy ships threatens its sovereignty.  It also says navigation is not being interfered with by China.  The U.S. sent a guided missile destroyer within 12 nautical miles of China’s disputed man-made islands.  China says the U.S. action was a “threat to peace.”
  • American Billionaire Warns To Get Out Of The Stock Markets And Run To Gold
    Billionaire trader, Stanley Druckenmiller, recently stated that the current situation in the global economy is similar to the situation on the eve of the crisis of 2008. At the Ira Sohn Investment Conference in New York, he said, “The bull market is exhausting itself… The Fed has borrowed from future consumption more than ever before. It is the least data dependent Fed in history. This is the longest deviation from historical norms in terms of Fed dovishness than I have ever seen in my career.” And Druckenmiller was quoted by CNBC, saying, “This kind of myopia causes reckless behavior.” He warned that people should get out of the stock market and buy gold. We agree with him, of course.  But, it got us to thinking about how many Americans, or other Westerners, own gold at this crucial time.
  • Worst is Yet to Come? US Billionaire Warns of Crisis Worse Than 2008
    The current situation in the global economy is similar to the situation on the eve of the crisis of 2008, billionaire trader Stanley Druckenmiller said. According to the businessman, the main risks stem from actions of the US Federal Reserve and the People’s Bank of China. He criticized the Federal Reserve for its “myopic policy” of low interest rates which has led to growing bullish sentiments in the market. “The bull market is exhausting itself,” he said at the Ira Sohn Investment Conference in New York. The Fed’s easy monetary policy has resulted companies taking on massive debt loads which they then used to buy back shares, instead of increasing capital spending.
  • Which US Companies Stockpile the Most Profit “Overseas?” But where the Heck is the Money?
    There is a misconception about the uncanny ability of very profitable US companies, like Microsoft and Apple, to park their profits overseas in order to dodge US taxes: the money from these profits that are parked “overseas” isn’t actually overseas. It is registered in accounts overseas, for example in Ireland, but is then invested in whatever assets the company chooses to invest it in, including in US Treasuries, US corporate bonds, US stocks, and other US-based investments. This was revealed to the public during the Senate subcommittee investigation and hearings in March 2013 that exposed where Apple’s profits that were officially parked “overseas” actually end up. “Tim Cook emerged smelling like a rose, the triumphant CEO of America’s most iconic welfare queen,” I wrote at the time. And so the practice continues in all its glory. These funds cannot even be “repatriated” because they’re already here — or wherever the company wanted to invest them.
  • Who’s Really Most Afraid of Brexit? And Why?
    One of the glaring but oft-overlooked ironies of the Brexit debate is the fact that the UK has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the creation of the euro, despite not being a member of the Eurozone and holding the single currency in rampant disregard. The UK economy has certainly benefited more than most Eurozone economies. Since 2001 Britain’s share of key financial markets has exploded. London is now home to almost one-half of the entire global interest-rate OTC derivatives market, compared to 35% in 2001. Its share of global forex turnover increased from 33% to 41% between 2001 and 2014. And its share of global hedge fund assets doubled, from 9% to 18%. Almost 2.2 million people work in financial and related services such as accounting and law, two-thirds of them outside London, reports a study by the financial services lobby group CityUK. They produce nearly 12% of the UK’s GDP, 11% of its tax take, and a net trade surplus of £72 billion ($104 billion).
  • NATO assembles its biggest military build-up since the Cold War as more troops are deployed in eastern Europe to deter Russia
    NATO foreign ministers have been finalising the alliance’s biggest military build-up since the end of the Cold War in the face of a more aggressive and unpredictable Russia. NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said the two-day meeting, which began yesterday, would address ‘all the important issues’ to prepare for a ‘landmark’ summit in Poland in July. NATO leaders will endorse plans to puts more troops into eastern European member states as part of a ‘deter and dialogue’ strategy. Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Bulgaria have all been  meant to reassure allies they will not be left in the lurch in any repeat of the Ukraine crisis.
  • Multiple Collapse Triggers Everywhere-V the Guerilla Economist
    “V” the “Guerilla Economist” fears another global financial collapse “every day and every night.” “V” explains, “Economically speaking . . . What I see is it’s not one event. There are multiple triggers everywhere.  If Deutsche Bank goes belly up tonight . . . that could send a cascade of bank failures throughout the euro zone, which will blow back right here through London to New York, and we will be in the absolute crap storm.  We will be in the middle of it.  It could happen at any time.  If the Saudis decide to go nuts and decide to dump $750 billion . . . if they start dumping U.S. Treasuries, it can cause a run on the bond market.  It could cause a massive fissure and a massive blow back.  Then, you have what’s going on with derivative interest rate swaps, which are also tied into bonds, which are also tied into the repurchasing markets.  All these things can bring pressure, and all you are seeing are nothing but triggers everywhere.  So, Donald Trump is right.  We could be in a financial meltdown.  It amazes me that the media would rather question him about Trump steaks or Trump University or why his clothing is being pulled out of Macy’s versus asking Trump about him saying the economy can go belly up, and we can be in a financial meltdown.  Nobody even brings that up.  That’s unbelievable.”
  • Woodward: Washington Post Assigns 20 Reporters to Dig Into Trump’s Past
    The Washington Post has assigned 20 reporters to look into every aspect of Donald Trump’s past as the presumptive GOP nominee seeks to become the next president of the United States, famed Post associate editor, Bob Woodward, said Wednesday. “There’s a lot we don’t know,” Woodward told the National Association of Realtors convention, according to The Washington Examiner. “We have 20 people working on Trump, we’re going to do a book, we’re doing articles about every phase of his life.”
  • Global Elite Making Preparations for Post-Dollar World-Rob Kirby
    Macroeconomic analyst Rob Kirby says his rich clients around the planet are bracing for an inevitable economic calamity. Kirby explains, “The people I know, that I would say are at the higher level of the food chain in the global world of finance, are hunkered down and making very serious preparations.  What I see on a macro level is people acting like squirrels preparing for winter.  They are burying nuts and gathering as much physical precious metals as they can. They are making preparations for a post-dollar world in terms of world reserve currency.” On news that there are more than 540 paper claims for every ounce of Gold at COMEX, Kirby contends, “There are 540 claims for every ounce of gold at the COMEX vault. My question to you is what happens if that gold is in fact leased metal?  Then, the 540 becomes 1,080, and what if it has been leased two times?  Then, it becomes 2,160.  So, the number of claims for every ounce of gold may be many factors higher than even 540.”
  • Pope Francis Calls For Worldwide Communist Government
    In this Jubilee Year 2016, Pope Francis affirmed communism as the best structure for humankind and the European Union. He did so upon receiving the Charlemagne Prize last week and made a speech that included the following comment: “We need to move from a liquid economy prepared to use corruption as a means of obtaining profits, to a social economy that guarantees access to land and lodging through labor.” Read that quote carefully.  What is he proposing here? He wants to move from a “liquid economy”… what does that mean?  My only guess is that he wants the economy to be less fluid… more controlled.  He then seems to imply that making profits (creating wealth, you know, the stuff that enables him to sit on his golden thrones in his massive militarized compound) is in some way corrupt.  He then wants to move to a “social economy”, which I presume means socialism/communism.  And through that he wants to “guarantee” access to land and lodging through labor. You know who else received guaranteed access to lodging through labor?  African slaves in the 1800s. For this Pope it seems a kind of slavery is best suited to the human condition. Everyone is entitled to the essentials and not much more. And in return, everyone “labors.”
  • Can Saudi Arabia Really Break Its Dependence On Oil?
    Saudi Arabia appears committed to its recently-announced long-term economic plan, dubbed Vision 2030, which aims to remove the country’s economic dependence on oil exports within the next several decades. The removal of Ali al-Naimi, who for twenty-five years acted as the Kingdom’s oil minister and engineered the production surge guiding Saudi policy since November 2014, is a further indication of the government’s determination to make a major economic course correction. But can they do it? Oil covers 70 percent of government revenue, while the oil industry is a major employer for the Saudi workforce. The immediate reaction to the plan, announced on April 25 by Crown Prince Muhammed bin Salman, was guarded optimism. Recently there has been much more skepticism, with some doubting how Saudi Arabia could accomplish all that it has planned for itself.
  • Another Asset Bubble Cracks: Art Sales Plunge
    After a blistering five-year boom of near limitless possibilities, it is suddenly getting tough in another asset class – one that mere commoner millionaires are not invited to play in: the high-dollar art market. Auction house Sotheby’s reported on Monday that revenues in the first quarter plunged 32% from a year ago. Agency commissions and fees, the largest subcategory, plummeted 37%. Expenses edged up. Hence a resounding operating loss of $32 million – a $50-million swing from its $18 million profit a year ago. On the news, Sotheby’s shares plunged 8%, at one point trading below $26 a share, but then miraculously bounced back and today closed at $28.72. Yet, they’re still down 38% from their 52-week high last June, and 46% from the post-financial crisis high in December 2013, the halcyon days when QE was still inflating the art market and the wealth of its participants.
  • The real problem with negative interest rates? They are a stealth tax
    Central banks have slashed interest rates to nothing. They have printed money on a vast scale. Where that has not quite worked, and if we are being honest that is most places, they now have a new tool. Negative interest rates. Across a third of the global economy, money you put in the bank does not only generate nothing in the way of a return. You actually get charged for keeping it there. That is already producing strange, Alice-in-Wonderland economics, where nothing is quite what it seems. Governments want you to delay paying taxes as long as possible, the mortgage company pays you to stay in the house, and cash becomes so sought after there is even talk of abolishing it. But the real problem with negative rates may be something quite different.
  • Wealth Confiscation for the Digital Age: the New “Cash Tax”
    “Negative interest rates” have become a phenomenon with economists and the media. But I’m writing to tell you something about negative interest rates you haven’t heard. You certainly won’t hear about it in the mainstream press. What’s coming at you is a historic event. It’s something our grandchildren will hear stories about, much like the Great Depression or the Cold War. It could send the price of gold much higher in the coming years. If you know what’s coming, it could mean the difference between having lots of free cash in retirement and barely getting by. And please remember this warning: Social Security will help even less than you think. To understand the gravity of this moment, let’s cover one of the most bizarre ideas in the world…
  • “Evil World Banking” Explained
    In this animated video, John Perkins, author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, explains how terrorism and a “mutant, viral form of capitalism” are connected. “If we want to get rid of terrorism, we must get rid of the root causes,” he says, “that cancer that is destroying our whole system.” The video, created by Studio Joho, shows, very simply, how someone transforms from a vibrant kid into a dangerous terrorist. When corporations take over entire nations, depleting their resources and leaving governments in debt to giant institutions, people become desperate. Once they lose their homes and families to a crippled economy and a bloody war, what choice do they have? “I think it’s really important that we understand today,” Perkins emphasizes, “we cannot have homeland security unless we understand that the whole planet is our homeland.”
  • With A Historic -150% Net Short Position, Carl Icahn Is Betting On An Imminent Market Collapse
    Over the past year, based on his increasingly more dour media appearances, billionaire Carl Icahn had been getting progressively more bearish. At first, he was mostly pessimistic about junk bonds, saying last May that “what’s even more dangerous than the actual stock market is the high yield market.” As the year progressed his pessimism become more acute and in December he said that the “meltdown in high yield is just beginning.” It culminated in February when he said on CNBC that a “day of reckoning is coming.” Some skeptics thought that Icahn was simply trying to scare investors into selling so he could load up on risk assets at cheaper prices, however that line of thought was quickly squashed two weeks ago when Icahn announced to the shock of ever Apple fanboy that several years after his “no brainer” investment in AAPL, Icahn had officially liquidated his entire stake. As it turns out, Icahn’s AAPL liquidation was just the appetizer of how truly bearish the legendary investor has become.
  • Only Six Years After BP Oil Disaster, Gulf Coast Is Faced With New Drilling
    The horizon looked like peanut butter. That’s what Cherri Foytlin thought six years ago as she sat in a boat speeding toward the largest oil spill ever in the Gulf of Mexico. Then a journalist for a local Louisiana paper, Foytlin enlisted a fisherman and his son to give her a behind-the-scenes look at the damage caused by BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil-rig explosion that killed 11 people and spewed 205.8 million gallons of oil over 87 days in 2010.
  • How Much Does It Cost to Win a Seat in the U.S. Senate?
    Average cost of a losing campaign for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, 2012: $540,022. Average cost of a winning campaign for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, 2012: $1,567,379. Average cost of a losing campaign for a seat in the U.S. Senate, 2012: $7,434,819. Average cost of a winning campaign for a seat in the U.S. Senate, 2012: $11,474,362.
  • Bob Diamond says Africa faces challenges as global banks pull out
    The fast-growing economies of Africa face headwinds from the pull-back of international banks from the continent, Barclays’ erstwhile-chief executive told CNBC, as the bank moves to sell down its business in Africa. Countries like Nigeria, the continent’s biggest economy, received a flurry of international trade finance in the build-up to the global financial crisis of 2007-08. Since then, inflows have slowed, increasing the economic challenge for the continent where many people still struggle to access energy supplies or basic education. “There are headwinds from commodities and international banks pulling out,” Bob Diamond told CNBC Africa on Saturday at the London Business School’s Africa Business Summit.
  • 9/11 bill passes US Senate despite Saudi ‘warning’
    A bill that would allow the families of 9/11 victims to sue the Saudi government has passed a key hurdle in the US Senate. The Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) now moves to the House of Representatives. Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister warned that the move could cause his government to withdraw US investments. President Barack Obama said he will veto the bill, but a Democratic senator is “confident” he’d be overruled. If it became law the legislation would allow victims’ families to sue any member of the government of Saudi Arabia thought to have played a role in any element of the attack. Saudi Arabia denies any involvement in the 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, which killed nearly 3,000 people. Fifteen out of the nineteen hijackers in 2001 were Saudi citizens.
  • China Furious After US Launches Trade War “Nuke” With 522% Duty
    Now that China’s brief infatuation with “rationalizing” excess capacity in its massively glutted (and insolvent) steel sector is over after lasting all of 2-3 months, China is back to doing what it did in late 2015 (and what it has always done) when as we reported, a surge in Chinese exports led to the first salvos in the trade war between China – the world’s biggest exporter of various steel products and is responsible for half the entire world’s steel output – and countries who are importing dumped Chinese products at the expense of their own steel and mining industries. Nowhere has this trade tension been more obvious than in the UK, where in recent months angry, protesting steel workers have been demanding rising protectionist steps against a country they, rightfully, see as unleashing a global commodity deflation driven by out of control, and unprofitable by highly subsidized, production by Chinese steel mills. The US was not left unscathed: we reported in December that “The Trade Wars Begin: U.S. Imposes 256% Tariff On Chinese Steel Imports” and since then things have progressively turned worse, finally culminating overnight with an outburst of anger from Chinese officials who, after attempting to flood not just the US but also the entire world with their commodity in general and steel in particular, exports…
  • US hikes duty on Chinese cold-rolled steel imports by 522%
    The US has raised the duty on Chinese cold-rolled steel by more than five-fold in an attempt to curb the flooding of foreign products into its market. Import taxes have been bumped up by 522%, with the Commerce Department ruling that Chinese companies were dumping their excess steel output in overseas markets below market cost and with unfair subsidies. It came after five major US steel producers — United States Steel, AK Steel Corp, ArcelorMittal USA, Nucor Corp and Steel Dynamics Inc — filed a formal trade action in 2015 alleging foreign companies of selling steel at unfairly low prices. The companies claimed they had been forced to lay off 12,000 steel workers over the past year as a result. The Commerce Department set final anti-dumping duties of 266% — and anti-subsidy duties of 256% — on cold-rolled flat steel from China. It also levied a 71% import tax on Japanese cold-rolled steel.
  • Climate change puts 1.3bn people and $158tn at risk, says World Bank
    The global community is badly prepared for a rapid increase in climate change-related natural disasters that by 2050 will put 1.3 billion people at risk, according to the World Bank. Urging better planning of cities before it was too late, a report published on Monday from a Bank-run body that focuses on disaster mitigation, said assets worth $158tn (£109tn) – double the total annual output of the global economy – would be in jeopardy by 2050 without preventative action. The Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery said total damages from disasters had ballooned in recent decades but warned that worse could be in store as a result of a combination of global warming, an expanding population and the vulnerability of people crammed into slums in low-lying, fast-growing cities that are already overcrowded.
  • Chinese pour $110bn into US real estate, says study
    Chinese nationals have become the largest foreign buyers of US property after pouring billions into the market in search of safe offshore assets, according to a study. A huge surge in Chinese buying of both residential and commercial real estate last year took their five-year investment total to more than $110bn, according to the study from the Asia Society and Rosen Consulting Group. The sheer size of that total has helped the real estate market recover from the crash that began in 2006 and precipitated the 2008 economic crisis, they said. Chinese investment in property has also helped to inflate prices in other developed countries, notably the UK and Australia in the wake of the dip in world stock markets in 2015.
  • Greeks switch to bartering because there’s not enough currency
    Greeks are turning to the age-old system of bartering to help combat the country’s liquidity crisis. Artistic designs are being exchanged for olive oil, accounting tips for office supplies, and 6,000 new users signed up for online bartering site Tradenow after capital controls were imposed in June, according to the New York Times. “In Greece there’s a major liquidity problem,” Thodoris Roussos, a Greek butcher who bought a new truck with his own meat, told the Times. “People are finding it more convenient to trade because money is not readily available.”

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

Latest News Articles – May 19, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From April 29, 2016 to May 19, 2016:

  • 50-Year Veteran Warns A Massive Reset Of The World Financial System Is Coming
    With the U.S. dollar continuing to trade near recent lows and gold trading near $1,240, today a 50-year market veteran warned King World News that a massive reset of the world financial system is coming. John Embry:  “Eric, just when you think things can’t become any more artificial or ludicrous, Bloomberg comes out with a report that the Japanese central bank, by virtue of its month-to-month purchases of Japanese stock ETFs, is now a top ten holder in approximately 90 percent of the Japanese companies that make up the Nikkei 225 Index…
  • ALERT: Legend Warns A Day Of Reckoning Is Coming And The Global Collapse Will Be Absolutely Terrifying
    After a wild start to the 2016 trading year, today the man who has become legendary for his predictions on QE, historic moves in currencies, and major global events, just warned a day or reckoning is coming and the global collapse will be absolutely terrifying. Egon von Greyerz:  “Investors around the world are blissfully ignorant of what will hit them in the coming months and years. Virtually no one understands the risks in the world, and less than 0.5% of investors have protected themselves against the destruction of their financial assets…
  • Saudi Arabia US Friction, Economic Update, China Gold Fix and Fraud Ignored by MSM
    The President was in Saudi Arabia in what the White House claims was a trip to “clear the air.” I really don’t know how you clear the air with the friction between the U.S. and the Kingdom. There is ISIS, which the Saudis are funding along with the U.S, but that’s changing because it appears the U.S. is increasing its attacks on ISIS. There is the bi-partisan Senate bill that will release the missing 28 pages of the 9/11 Commission Report that supposedly implicates Saudi Arabia. It will also allow the families if the 9/11 attack to sue Saudi Arabia if it was involved. The Saudis said they would dump a trillion dollars in U.S. assets if that becomes law. President Obama says he will veto. The House and Senate may have enough votes in this election year to override that veto as big time people in both parties are pushing this. The President is also basically telling Arab allies in the Middle East that they should learn how to share the region with Iran. So, I really do not know how they can “clear the air” with zero resolutions.
  • A Bird’s-Eye View Of How The US Economy Is Falling Apart (In 4 Simple Charts)
    My college-aged kids love him. I’m not talking about Stephen Curry or Justin Bieber (although they love them too); I’m talking about Bernie Sanders. Whether you support him or not, my guess is that most Americans my age are very surprised about his popularity. However, it shouldn’t be a surprise given the economic stress many Americans face. Sadly, roughly 50 million Americans live below the poverty line—the largest number in our nation’s history—and the poorest 40% of all Americans now spend more than 50% of their incomes just on food and housing.
  • “We Haven’t Seen This Is In Our Lifetimes” – CEO Says “Alberta Is In A Depression”
    Regular readers know that we’ve covered Alberta’s decline at length (refresher here), so there is no need to give much of a backstory other than to say that the situation seems to get worse for the Canadian province as each day passes even as oil has rebounded in the past two months. Toronto’s “Condo King” Brad Lamb tried to put things into context when he said the situation is “worse than 2008.” However, on Friday we received an even more gloomy (albeit realistic) description of the economic situation in Canada’s energy hub, Alberta. In a very blunt interview with BNN, Murray Mullen the CEO of trucking company Mullen Group, said that the situation has moved well past recession, and should be described as a depression.
  • Despite Record Liquidity, Chinese Repo Rates Are Rising Again
    As out friends from Fasanara Capital remind us, despite record liquidity injections by the PBOC in the past few days, Chinese repo rates have resumed continue breaking higher. The move is odd, given ongoing record liquidity injections (RMB 680 bn last week, RMB 150 bn today). As Fasanara’s Francesco Filia writes, “the mind inevitably goes to excess credit troubles in China and potential for CNH selling-off” and adds that the “move directly affects leveraged positions on bonds, funded by short-term repos.” While so far, the currency and the SHCOMP remain stable, it is a notable trend to watch.
  • Saudi Arabia agrees plans to move away from oil profits
    The Saudi cabinet has approved sweeping economic reforms aimed at moving the country away from its dependence on oil profits. Just over 70% of revenues came from oil last year but it has been hit by falling prices. One part of the plan will see shares sold in state-owned oil giant Aramco to create a sovereign wealth fund. Announcing the reforms, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman described his country as being addicted to oil.
  • Greece bailout talks make ‘progress’
    Eurozone finance ministers say they have made progress in talks about the bailout programme for Greece. But they said after a meeting in Amsterdam on Friday that further work was still needed. They said they are hopeful that an agreement can reached in the next few days and are ready to call an extraordinary meeting. That would pave the way for the next payment under the bailout. It’s a familiar pattern.
  • Morgan Stanley’s profit more than halved as trading slumps
    Morgan Stanley’s quarterly profit fell by more than half as the Wall Street bank’s fixed-income trading and investment banking businesses took a hit from market volatility early in the year. But the earnings still handily beat expectations as the bank slashed employee compensation, helping to push up its shares 2.5 per cent in premarket trading on Monday. Sliding commodity and oil prices, worries about the Chinese economy and uncertainty about U.S. interest rates made for wobbly markets in January and February, scaring off traders, investors and companies hoping to list on stock exchanges.
  • Citigroup profit plunges 27% as trading revenue falls
    Citigroup Inc’s quarterly profit plunged 27 percent as its trading revenue fell and its costs related to shrinking some businesses rose. The profit decline is the biggest among big U.S. banks that have reported first-quarter results so far, but Citigroup’s earnings and revenue beat Wall Street’s low expectations, helped by a fall in operating expenses. Shares of the No.4 U.S. bank by assets were up more than 2 percent in premarket trading on Friday. Banks globally have had a tough start to the year amid near-zero interest rates, a slowdown in China and low oil prices.
  • Bank of America profit slides 18% as trading activity weakens
    Bank of America Corp, the No. 2 U.S. bank by assets, reported an 18 per cent slide in quarterly profit as concerns about a global economic slowdown and uncertainty about the pace of U.S. interest rate increases dampened bond and stock trading. Net income attributable to common shareholders fell to US$2.22-billion, or 21 cents per share, in the three months ended March 31, from $2.72-billion, or 25 cents per share, a year earlier. Analysts on average had expected earnings of 20 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. It was not immediately clear if the figures reported on Thursday were comparable.
  • Gerald Celente – The Dream Is Dying As Americans Now Consume 80% Of Global Painkillers
    While politicians lie, the numbers don’t. On the economic front, according to The Pew Research Center, “Americans are less well-to-do now than at the start of the 21st century. For all income tiers, median incomes in 2014 were lower than in 2000. These reversals are the result of two recessions – the downturn in 2001 and the Great Recession of 2007-09 – and economic recoveries that have been too anemic to fully repair the damage.” Once the “land of opportunity,” the gap between the rich and poor in America is the widest among all the developed nations. A report by the University of Michigan illustrates the Gilded Age wealth inequality that now prevails. The median American household was 13.6 times poorer than an average household in the 95th percentile in 2003. By 2013, the average household in the 95th percentile (top 5 percent) was 24.2 times richer than the median household and 426.5 times richer than the average household in the 25th percentile.
  • Venezuela introduces two-day week to deal with energy crisis
    Venezuela’s government has imposed a two-day working week for public sector workers as a temporary measure to help it overcome a serious energy crisis. Vice-President Aristobulo Isturiz announced that civil servants should turn up for work only on Mondays and Tuesdays until the crisis was over. Venezuela is facing a major drought, which has dramatically reduced water levels at its main hydroelectric dam. But the opposition has accused the government of mismanaging the crisis. The measures announced on national television by Mr Isturiz affect two million public sector workers. “There will be no work in the public sector on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, except for fundamental and necessary tasks,” he said.
  • Durable goods orders were weaker than expected in March
    Durable goods orders rose 0.8% in March, according to preliminary data from the Department of Commerce. Excluding transportation, orders fell 0.2%. Economists had forecast that orders for goods built to last rose 1.9%, according to Bloomberg. Excluding transportation orders, they forecast a 0.5% rise.
  • Atlanta Fed Boosts GDP Forecast Following Today’s Durable Goods Miss And Downward Revision
    If there was some confusion why the Atlanta Fed recently revised its GDP Nowcast higher following the recent retail sales miss, that confusion will be even more acute today when moments ago the Atlanta Fed plugged today’s weaker than expected durable goods print (and downward revision to past month’s data), and ended up with… a GDP forecast that was higher than previously, or an increase from 0.3% to 0.4%.
  • New York City Millennials Make Less, Have More Debt 
    Millennials in New York City earn about 20% less than the previous generation of young workers and are likely to struggle for years from the effects of the late-2000s recession, according to a report from city Comptroller Scott Stringer. The report found the recession saddled people who were born from 1985 to 1996 with greater debt than their parent and given them fewer high-wage job opportunities even as the cost of housing in the city has risen. “Millennials were applying for jobs in the most difficult economic climate since the Great Depression,” Mr. Stringer said in his report, which was set to be released late Monday. “Every generation is expected to do better than the last, but too many millennials are not getting a fair chance to make it here in New York City.”
  • Twitter plummets 14% on revenue, outlook miss
    Wall Street’s view of Twitter can be summed up in far fewer than 140 characters: Too little growth. Twitter shares plunged more than 14% Wednesday after the social media company released financial results after the bell Tuesday. Revenue came in lighter than analysts had forecast and second-quarter revenue guidance fell far short of expectations. Making matters even worse for the beleaguered company, user growth only crept up. The first-quarter triple whammy raised fresh concerns that Twitter will fall even farther behind market leaders Facebook and Google in attracting digital advertising dollars. In a tweet, Twitter acknowledged that “brand marketers did not increase spend as quickly as expected” in the first quarter.
  • James Rickards Says Yellen Has Gone “Full-Dove;” Won’t Raise Interest Rates
    With the Federal Reserve preparing for another meeting, pundits are talking interest rate hikes. Even AP is speculating that a rate hike is unlikely this go-around, blaming problems the “global economy.”The US job market is healthy. The stock market is up. Home prices are rising. Yet as the Federal Reserve prepares to meet this week, it seems in no mood to resume raising interest rates from ultra-lows. With the global economy struggling and US inflation still below the Fed’s target rate, many economists see little likelihood of a rate increase even before the second half of the year.”
  • Britain’s property market is going to implode as housing nears peak affordability
    Property prices in Britain may be surging due to a horrendous imbalance of supply and demand — but the market is poised to implode. Why? Because Britons are not earning enough money to either get on the housing ladder or are spending such a large portion of their wages on mortgages that may not be sustainable. Well, not unless everyone suddenly gets a huge pay rise over the next year or so. That’s the assumption in the latest figures from think tank Resolution Foundation, which show that lower- and middle-income households are spending 26% of their salaries on housing, compared to 18% back in 1995. In London, households spend 28% of their income on housing.
  • Venezuela Doesn’t Have Enough Money to Pay for Its Money
    Venezuela’s epic shortages are nothing new at this point. No diapers or car parts or aspirin — it’s all been well documented. But now the country is at risk of running out of money itself. In a tale that highlights the chaos of unbridled inflation, Venezuela is scrambling to print new bills fast enough to keep up with the torrid pace of price increases. Most of the cash, like nearly everything else in the oil-exporting country, is imported. And with hard currency reserves sinking to critically low levels, the central bank is doling out payments so slowly to foreign providers that they are foregoing further business. Venezuela, in other words, is now so broke that it may not have enough money to pay for its money.
  • Why Sports Authority is throwing in the towel and closing all of its stores
    When struggling retailer Sports Authority filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last month in the face of more than $1 billion in debt, the company indicated that it had two options going forward. One of those was to shed under performing stores and emerge from bankruptcy as an intact, but pared-down company. The other was to sell everything and cease operating. On Tuesday, the company appeared to choose the latter.
  • Suicides Up as Jobs Dry Up
    Middle-aged people laid off and unable to find work are taking another way out. They’re killing themselves. Suicide rates are soaring, according to federal data released last week. Especially in economically depressed states and job-starved regions like upstate New York. People in need of work are twice as likely to take their own lives as employed people, and people fired in their 40s and 50s find it hardest to get hired again. That makes boosting economic growth a life-and-death issue. But you wouldn’t know it listening to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. President Obama whitewashes reality, claiming the “American economy is pretty darn good right now.”
  • UK Better Off Outside EU, Economists Say
    The UK economy would be about 4% bigger 10 years after leaving the European Union than if it stayed in, according to a group of leading economists who support an exit. A pamphlet published by the eight “Economists for Brexit” set out a series of arguments on the benefits of voting to leave in the referendum on 23 June. They include the claim that lower tariffs on imports from outside the bloc will boost UK consumer spending sharply. It is also argued that EU regulation holds back growth and that without this, jobs and investment will flourish. The pamphlet also argues the UK could better spend its contribution to the EU budget elsewhere, and also that there would be more control over the mix of skills brought by immigrants.
  • US to paint new pictures on its dying, barbarous relic of a currency
    In a letter to the American tax slaves, US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew “the Loon”  has presented his plan to replace some of the images on the dwindling  $20, $10 and $5 Federal Reserve Notes.  Slave emancipator, Harriet Tubman, will replace Andrew Jackson on the $20, leaders of the suffrage movement will go on the $10 and images of the Lincoln Memorial will go on the $5. You’d think with the US government being $19 trillion in debt they’d have bigger priorities than artwork. The US can’t pay what it owes any more than its indebted citizens can. Something like 50 million are on food stamps and most of the rest don’t have a dollar in the bank to tide them over once things get worse. And they will. Just wait until the dollar crashes for good.
  • Carl Icahn says he sold entire Apple stake on China woes: CNBC
    Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn said today he had sold his entire stake in Apple Inc, citing the risk of China’s influence on the stock. Icahn, in an interview with cable television network CNBC, also said he was “still very cautious” on the US stock market and there would be a “day of reckoning” unless there was some sort of fiscal stimulus. Icahn had been a huge cheerleader of Apple, acquiring a stake in the company almost three years ago, repeatedly calling the investment a “no brainer.” In an open letter to Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook in May 2015, Icahn had argued that shares of the iPhone maker were worth $240, about 90 percent more than they had been trading. At $240 a share, Apple’s market cap would be $1.4 trillion, Icahn asserted.
  • End of Golden Era for Investors Spells Troubles for Millennials
    Turning 30 just got a lot scarier. A coming collapse in investment returns means that people that age today will have to work seven years longer or save almost twice as much to end up with the same nest egg as those of roughly a generation ago. So says the research arm of McKinsey & Co. in a new report that argues that investors of all ages need to resign themselves to diminished gains. The consulting company maintains that the last 30 years have been a “golden era” of exceptional inflation-adjusted returns thanks to a confluence of factors that won’t be repeated. They include falling inflation and interest rates, swelling corporate profits and an expanding price-earnings ratio in the stock market.
  • Federal Reserve Leaves Door Open for June Rate Increase
    Federal Reserve policy makers left open the door to raising interest rates in June by nodding to improvement in global financial markets and downplaying recent weakness in the U.S. economy. The Federal Open Market Committee omitted previous language that “global economic and financial developments continue to pose risks,” instead saying officials will “closely monitor” the world situation, according to a statement released Wednesday following a two-day meeting in Washington. The Fed left its benchmark interest rate unchanged. “Their removal of the line on risks is pretty significant,” said Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist at Northern Trust Corp. in Chicago and a former Fed official. “That might reflect increased comfort on the committee that global influences appear more manageable.”
  • Danger Signs in the World’s Top Housing Market
    At first glance, the world’s best-performing housing market bears few of the usual hallmarks of a bubble about to pop. Reliance on mortgages is low, and Turkish homeowners reliably repay their loans, helped by house prices that rose faster than in any other country last year. The risk, at a time when construction has grown to make up a bigger share of the country’s investments than in China, is with the builders rather than the buyers. The share of Turkey’s borrowing represented by developers is higher than at any time in the last decade, and represents almost a fifth of all corporate loans, according to the nation’s banking association. An increasing portion of those debts is going bad, with the industry’s portion of non-performing loans nearly doubling in the past five years. “Mortgages are not the problem,” said Ercan Uysal, a banking analyst at Istanbul-based research firm Integras. “Developer leverage is.”
  • Why “The Grave Dancer” Is Cashing Out Once Again
    Sam Zell has called the top again… Zell is a real estate mogul and self-made billionaire. He made a fortune buying property for pennies on the dollar during recessions in the 1970s and 1990s. This earned him the nickname “The Grave Dancer.” Zell was also one of the only real estate gurus to spot the last property bubble and get out before it popped. In February 2007, he sold $23 billion worth of office buildings. U.S. commercial property prices peaked nine months later and went on to plunge 42%.
  • Investor rebellion over executive pay gathers pace
    A shareholder rebellion over excessive executive pay has gathered pace with Weir Group, Shire, Standard Chartered and Reckitt Benckiser all targeted by investors. At the annual meeting of engineering firm Weir Group, a proposed pay policy was rejected by 72% of shareholders. The company says it will discuss alternative options with shareholders. At drugs maker Shire, 49% of investors voted against a 25% pay increase for chief executive Flemming Ornskov. Every three years shareholders receive a chance to vote on the way the formula for executive pay is constructed. That vote is binding, so the board needs a majority of shareholders to vote in favour. So, in the case of Weir, the board of directors will have to come up with a new plan. Votes between these three-year cycles are not binding, but can create embarrassment for the boss and the board of directors, as in the case of Shire.
  • The U.S. Economy Officially Joins The Global Economic Slowdown – 1st Quarter GDP Comes In At 0.5%
    Even the government is admitting that the U.S. economy is slowing down.  On Thursday, we learned that U.S. GDP grew at just a 0.5 percent annual rate during the first quarter of 2016.  This was lower than analysts were anticipating, and it marks the third time in a row that the GDP number has declined compared to the previous quarter.  In other words, GDP growth has been declining for close to a year now, and this lines up perfectly with what I have been saying about how the second half of last year was a turning point that plunged us into the early chapters of a brand new economic crisis.  And as you will see below, the official GDP number is highly manipulated, and the way that it is calculated has been changed numerous times over the years.  So the bad number that is being reported by the government is actually the best case scenario.
  • Economy Rotten-Like Apple Sales, Russia US Moving Towards Conflict, MSM Unfair to Trump
    The economy is rotten just like Apple iPhone sales numbers. For the first time in 10 years, Apple reported its first quarterly sales drop for their popular iPhone. No, it’s not the end of the world, but it’s a sign there is trouble in the economy.  Sure, Facebook beat its earnings projections, but they don’t make anything.  Other bad news includes new home sales are down.  Manufacturing numbers from the Dallas Fed are down.  Consumer sentiment numbers from the University of Michigan are down.  Spending is down.  Retail sales are down.  GDP in the first quarter came in at a paltry .5%.  Economist John Williams says that number will be revised down and will probably turn negative.  Williams says we are already in a recession or soon will be.  Both Bo Polny and Greg Mannarino say the same thing: we are getting to a point where they can no longer hide the bad economy, and there really is no recovery after all.
  • Dollar Selling Panic Coming-John Williams
    Economist John Williams has long predicted the $16 trillion in U.S. dollar assets held outside of America will be sold in a panic. The time draws near for that scenario to unfold, and Williams explains, “When people start selling the dollar, or dollar denominated assets, you will see the value of the plunge.  We have had a remarkable rally in the dollar since mid-2014, and it is up over 30%.  It is going to be going down by more than that, and we are going to be headed to new lows.  We have the waffling of the Fed and the beginnings of the perception that the economy is in serious trouble, which generally would be negative for the dollar.  We have started to see selling pressure on the dollar.  It has been inching lower.  It’s down year to year now. . . . The selling is going to intensify, not only with large central banks, but with corporations that will be beginning to dump their Treasury holdings. . . . Nobody wants to be the last one out the door when you have a panic like this.  It’s not a panic yet, but the potential certainly is there.”
  • As The Price Of Gold Soars, Legend Warns That The World May Now Be Facing Catastrophic Consequences
    Today a legend who oversees more than $170 billion warned that the world may now be facing “catastrophic consequences.” Eric King:  “Rob, your firm helps to oversee $170 billion globally.  What has you worried going forward?  What has you concerned?” Rob Arnott:  “We are overdue for a U.S. equity bear market and if we get a bear market it will have ripple effects across other asset classes.  But the other thing that worries me even more than that is the central banks losing credibility and losing control.
  • ALERT: Top Money Manager Says Gold And Silver Are Destined For A Historic Mania!
    Today one of the top money managers in the world told King World News that gold and silver are destined for a historic mania! Stephen Leeb:  “Right now I am focused on gold and silver, particularly gold and silver stocks.  Many of these stocks have already tripled in price and some have gone up much more than that.  I understand that the massive gains in the high quality mining companies give people pause, and they worry about whether or not to sell.  But if I’m right, Eric, about there being a massive bull market in gold, can you imagine how high these stocks will go?  Meaning, you haven’t seen anything yet when it comes to the shares.  By the time this bull market is near its conclusion it will be an internet mania type of atmosphere for the mining shares…
  • Gold and Negative Interest Rates
    We hear more and more talk about the possibility of imposing negative interest rates in the US. In a recent article former Fed chairman Ben Bernanke asks what tools the Fed has left to support the economy and inter alia discusses the use of negative rates. We first have to define what we mean by negative interest rates. For nominal rates it’s simple. When the interest rate charged goes negative we have negative nominal rates. To get the real rate of interest we have to subtract inflation from the nominal rate, so to speak remove the illusion of inflation.
  • Venezuela Ups Minimum Wage; Effective Rate a Whopping $13.50 Per Month
    So much for that socialist paradise. Last summer we reported that hyperinflation had devalued the Venezuelan bolivar to the point that people were using 2-bolivar notes as napkins. In order to keep up with the rate of devaluation, the Venezuelan government literally flew in 747s full of cash. Now we’ve learned that the Venezuelan government is so broke, it can’t even pay to print more money.
  • Two Fed Officials Signal Markets May Be Wrong to Doubt June Hike
    Two regional Federal Reserve presidents said that an interest-rate increase should be on the table next month, pushing back against market expectations that the U.S. central bank will keep policy on hold for a fourth consecutive meeting. Atlanta Fed chief Dennis Lockhart and San Francisco’s John Williams both signaled on Tuesday that the U.S. economy could warrant a rate hike when the policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee gathers on June 14-15. Investors currently only see a 12 percent chance of such a move, according to pricing in interest rate futures contracts. “I would put more probability on it being a real option,” Lockhart told reporters at the Atlanta Fed’s financial markets conference at Amelia Island, Florida, when asked about the low implied odds of a move next month. “The communication of committee participants and members between now and mid-June obviously should try to prepare the markets for at least a realistic range of possibilities” for the next policy meeting.
  • Hedge Funds Under Attack as Steve Cohen Says Talent Is Thin
    In less than seven days, hedge funds have been subject to a three-pronged attack by some of the biggest names in finance. Steve Cohen, the billionaire trader whose former hedge fund had racked up average annual returns of 30 percent before pleading guilty to securities fraud three years ago, became the latest critic of the business, saying he’s astounded by its shortage of skilled people. “Frankly, I’m blown away by the lack of talent,” Cohen said at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, on Monday. “It’s not easy to find great people. We whittle down the funnel to maybe 2 to 4 percent of the candidates we’re interested in. Talent is really thin.”
  • U.S. Suicide Rate Surges to a 30-Year High
    Suicide in the United States has surged to the highest levels in nearly 30 years, a federal data analysis has found, with increases in every age group except older adults. The rise was particularly steep for women. It was also substantial among middle-aged Americans, sending a signal of deep anguish from a group whose suicide rates had been stable or falling since the 1950s. The suicide rate for middle-aged women, ages 45 to 64, jumped by 63 percent over the period of the study, while it rose by 43 percent for men in that age range, the sharpest increase for males of any age. The overall suicide rate rose by 24 percent from 1999 to 2014, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, which released the study on Friday.
  • Australia’s Central Bank Cuts Rates to Record Low
    Australia’s central bank cut its benchmark interest rate to a record low and left the door open for further easing to counter a wave of disinflation that’s swept over the developed world. The move sent the local currency tumbling and stocks climbing. Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Glenn Stevens and his board lowered the cash rate by 25 basis points to 1.75 percent Tuesday, a move predicted by just 12 of 27 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. The rest had seen no change. Data last week showed quarterly deflation in the consumer price index and the weakest annual pace on record for core inflation — which the RBA aims to keep between 2 percent and 3 percent on average.
  • Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis Deepens as Government Misses Payment
    Puerto Rico’s debt crisis moved into a more perilous phase for residents, lawmakers and bondholders Monday after the Government Development Bank failed to repay almost $400 million. The missed principal payment, the largest so far by the island, is widely viewed on Wall Street as foreshadowing additional defaults this summer, when more than $2 billion in bills are due.
  • U.S. manufacturers still aren’t finding much daylight, ISM survey shows
    U.S. manufacturers barely grew in April and there’s little sign of a broad pickup in business anytime soon, a survey of executives found. The Institute for Supply Management said its manufacturing index fell to 50.8% last month from 51.8% in March. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast the index to fall to 51.4%.
  • The Nasty Secret About America’s Job Market
    By all appearances, it seems like the American economy is back on its feet. Businesses are getting back on their feet, and as a result hiring additional employees to staff their firms. Many of the best jobs out there pay high wages, and the unemployment rate has held steady at around 5% for the past six months, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. For all intents and purposes, there are reasons to be optimistic about the economy. But once you dig past the headline unemployment rate, things get a little cloudier. A significant portion of Americans are considered to be “long-term unemployed,” and haven’t been able to find a job for extended periods of time. In other cases, older generations are finding jobs, but at the expense of younger workers looking to fill those same positions. But the biggest unresolved problem is that American’s part-time workforce has grown significantly, and experts aren’t sure it will ever shrink back to pre-recession levels.
  • Is the US Economy Heading for Recession?
    This past week the U.S. government announced the contry’s economy rose in the January-March 2016 at a mere 0.5 percent annual growth rate. Since the U.S., unlike other countries, estimates its GDP based on annual rates, that means for the first quarter 2016 the U.S. economy grew by barely 0.1 percent over the previous quarter in late 2015. Growth this slow indicates the US economy may have “slipped into ‘stall speed’, that is, growth so weak that the economy loses enough momentum and slides into recession”, according to economists at JPMorgan Chase.
  • Baker Hughes Says US Oil Rig Count Drops Another 11 to 332
    Baker Hughes reported the active oil rig count fell by 11 rigs to 332 for the week ending April 29. The total number of active oil and gas rigs declined by 11 to 420. This is the nineteenth week in a row the combined oil and gas rig count has fallen, moving further into record low territory. It is the sixth week in a row for oil-rigs only, now putting the total at its smallest count since late 2009. For the week ending April 22 the energy company said 9 combined oil and gas rigs went offline, bringing the total number of oil and gas rigs down to 431. The oil-rigs only count fell by 8 to 343. Crude oil is extending its gains for a fourth straight week and second consecutive month. The June WTI crude oil contract is currently trading lower on the session by 0.46% to $45.81.
  • U.S. Consumer Sentiment Fell as Caution Continued
    A closely watched gauge of U.S. consumer sentiment declined in April to its lowest level in seven months, the latest evidence of growing worry about the economy’s momentum. The University of Michigan final consumer-sentiment index for April, released on Friday, was 89.0, down from March’s final reading of 91.0 and the lowest level since September. “Consumer sentiment continued its slow decline in late April due to weakening expectations for future growth, although their views of current economic conditions remained positive,” said Richard Curtin, the survey’s chief economist.
  • Chicago PMI falls to 50.4 in April in sign of economic weakness
    A measure of Chicago-area economic activity softened in April, indicating that manufacturers and other large companies are still struggling to cope with lower exports, tepid global growth and even some weakness in the United States. The Chicago business barometer, or Chicago PMI, fell 3.2 points to 50.4 in April, MNI Indicators said Friday. Any reading over 50 indicates improving conditions, but the index has been hovering near the cutoff line for more than a year. Three of the five components in the survey deteriorated, including new orders. Orders dropped to the lowest level since December. Employment also turned negative again. A larger number of poll respondents are worried about the impact of a pending Federal Reserve interest-rate hike, the organization that compiles the report noted.
  • Automating Ourselves To Unemployment
    Students of Austrian business cycle theory are familiar with the term malinvestment. A malinvestment is any poor use of resources or capital, commonly made in response to bad policy (usually artificially low interest rates and/or unsustainable increases in the monetary supply). The dot-com bubble that popped in 2001? The housing bubble that similarly burst in 2008? Those were classic examples of malinvestment. With this article, I’d like to introduce a related term: malincentive. While not part of the official economic lexicon, I consider a ‘malincentive’ a useful word to describe any promise of short-term gain whose long-term costs outweigh any immediate benefits enjoyed. The temptation to urinate in one’s pants on a cold winter day to get warm is a (perhaps unnecessarily) graphic example of malincentive. Yes, a momentary relief from the cold can be achieved; but moments later, you’ll have a much larger problem than you did at the outset. Malincetives and malinvestment go hand-in-hand. In my opinion, the former causes the latter. As humans, we respond remarkably well to incentives. And dumb incentives encourage us to make dumb investments.
  • After the leaks showed what it stands for, could this be the end for TTIP?
    The documents show that US corporations will be granted unprecedented powers over any new public health or safety regulations to be introduced in future. If any European government does dare to bring in laws to raise social or environmental standards, TTIP will grant US investors the right to sue for loss of profits
  • German plot to keep EU army a SECRET till June 23 EXPOSED: EU plan to control OUR forces
    BRITISH Brexit campaigners have been boosted with news from Berlin that Germany is once more pushing for an EU army encompassing all 28 member states with a joint HQ and shared military planning. Along with judicial, tax and immigration issues, a Euro army has for long been one of the main irritants of anti-EU campaigners. The fact that Germany – the powerhouse of the project – is mooting one so close to the referendum on whether Britain stays or goes is seen as madness by politicians fighting to keep the UK within the group. Now a white paper has been drawn up by Berlin. Media reports suggest that the Germans wanted to keep its proposals secret until after the June 23 plebiscite but it has now been leaked.
  • BRUSSELS SHOCK: EU plots tax on British…to fund benefits for jobless in ITALY 
    BARMY Brussels bureaucrats are plotting to tax British shoppers to help subsidise the growing benefits bill for the Eurozone’s jobless. Leaders on the continent want to milk Britain’s growing economy by slapping a VAT-style tax on goods and services to fund an EU-wide unemployment benefit fund. The plan would mean British shoppers shelling out millions more at the tills every year to pay for benefits and job creation schemes in Mediterranean countries including Spain and Italy, which have high unemployment rates.
  • A New Digital Cash System Was Just Unveiled At A Secret Meeting For Bankers In New York
    Last month, a “secret meeting” that involved more than 100 executives from some of the biggest financial institutions in the United States was held in New York City.  During this “secret meeting“, a company known as “Chain” unveiled a technology that transforms U.S. dollars into “pure digital assets”.  Reportedly, there were representatives from Nasdaq, Citigroup, Visa, Fidelity, Fiserv and Pfizer in the room, and Chain also claims to be partnering with Capital One, State Street, and First Data.  This “revolutionary” technology is intended to completely change the way that we use money, and it would represent a major step toward a cashless society.  But if this new digital cash system is going to be so good for society, why was it unveiled during a secret meeting for Wall Street bankers?  Is there something more going on here than we are being told?
  • The End Of America?: 13 Catastrophic Events Which Could Soon Lead To An American Apocalypse
    Is the strongest and most powerful nation on the planet headed for an apocalypse which will bring it to its knees?  We live in a world that is becoming increasingly unstable, and apocalyptic themes have become very common in books, movies, television shows and video games.  It is almost as if there is an unconscious understanding on a societal level that something very big and very bad is coming, even if the vast majority of the population cannot specifically identify what that is going to be.  Last week, the Global Challenges Foundation released a new report entitled “Global Catastrophic Risks 2016” in which they discussed various apocalyptic events that they believe could wipe out more than 10 percent of the population of our planet, and they warned that these types of events “are more likely than we intuitively think”…
  • This Is Where America’s Runaway Inflation Is Hiding
    The Census Bureau released its quarterly update on residential vacancies and homeownership for Q1 which is closely watched for its update of how many Americans own versus rent. It shows that following a modest pickup in the homeownership rate in the prior two quarters, US homeowners once again posted a substantial decline, sliding from 63.8% to 63.5%, and just 0.1% higher than the 50 year low reported in Q2 2015.
  • Very Big Correction for All Markets Coming-Alasdair Macleod
    Financial expert Alasdair Macleod says the most important economic news concerns the U.S. dollar. Macleod explains, “I think the most important point is actually the dollar has turned.  The panic move into the dollar by miners and producers of raw material . . . was driving the dollar up. That has now ceased.  China has now started buying those raw materials, base metals, oil and so on and so forth.  So, the result is the commodity crisis is over.  That, actually, is the biggest driver of the dollar, which is pushing it down.”
  • Egon von Greyerz Warns The World Is Now On The Edge Of Total Chaos And Disaster
    On the heels of wild start to the 2016 trading year, today the man who has become legendary for his predictions on QE, historic moves in currencies, and major global events, just warned that the world is now on the edge of total chaos and disaster.  He also discussed the historic opportunity in the gold and silver markets. Egon von Greyerz:  “We know that central banks and governments have lost the plot. When the crisis started in 2006, US short rates were 5%. In 2008 they were down to zero and have virtually stayed there ever since. A crisis package of $25 trillion was thrown at the financial system. This is what the likes of JP Morgan and Goldman told the Fed they had to do to save the bank(-ers). Ten years later the world financial system is in a mess that is exponentially increasing. World debt has exploded, most governments are running deficits and the financial system is balancing dangerously on the edge of a precipice. $8 trillion of government debt is now negative and $16 trillion is below 1%…
  • 50-Year Market Veteran Discusses What’s Next After One Gold & Silver Index Soars 135% In Just Over 3 Months!
    With the U.S. dollar trading lower once again and the metals consolidating recent gains, today a 50-year market veteran discussed what’s next after one gold and silver index soars 135% in just over 3 months! Eric King:  “You have to be very careful not to simply use the COT Report (on gold and silver) because it can be a fairly good timing tool on the way down, at bottoms — and it’s not perfect at that, but on the way up it’s very difficult.  And I know we’ve had a lot of people calling tops, and these (calls) were at much lower prices. And the problem with calling those tops is that the commercial COT Report, it’s not going to give you those answers that easy.  I remember one time when I was speaking to Ted Butler and the commercials were 100 percent short (on a historic basis) at that time on silver and the price was $6.  What happened was the price of silver proceeded to surge 40 percent higher to $8.40, before then collapsing back down so the commercials could try to get healthy on those positions…
  • ALERT: SentimenTrader Just Issued An Extremely Important Update On Gold & Silver
    After last week’s surge in the metals sent the prices of gold and silver to new recent highs, SentimenTrader just issued an extremely important update on the gold and silver markets. From Jason Goepfert at SentimenTrader:  “The thrust in gold and gold stocks over the past three months has met the conditions of the studies and indicators that we discussed last fall, particularly last November. By mid-March, several indicators were suggesting shorter-term extreme optimism and the metals backed off a bit. Since then they have surged again, particularly the mining stocks. A concern remains “smart money” hedger positions which are at or near multi-year extreme bets against the metals.
  • FTSE 100: is this the perfect storm?
    The definition of a ‘perfect storm’ is where a rare combination of factors come together to drastically aggravate a situation. Looking ahead, it could be argued that the FTSE 100 faces a perfect storm during the rest of the year and that its downside risks are far greater than its potential upside. The most obvious risk facing the FTSE 100 is Brexit. This may not seem all that likely if most of the polls are to be believed, but there have been numerous occasions in the past where pollsters have made major errors with their predictions (such as in last year’s General Election). And with a number of voters being either undecided or seemingly carefree about the issue, there’s a real prospect of Britain leaving the EU as a result of 23 June’s vote.
  • Britain is horribly unprepared for the coming recession
    It’s the worst of all worlds: Britain looks like it is slipping complacently into a new recession but the country is hopelessly unprepared to deal with it. The macro data is ugly: Construction growth is the weakest in three years. Manufacturing went into contraction for the first time in three years. Consumers have switched their spending from retail goods to food — a sign they don’t feel confident about the finances.
  • ALERT: Paul Craig Roberts Just Warned The World Financial System Is On Fire And The Price Of Gold May Skyrocket
    Today former U.S. Treasury Secretary, Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, warned King World News that the world financial system is on fire and the price of gold may skyrocket. Dr. Paul Craig Roberts:  “The West no longer exists.  There’s no longer any democracy in the West, certainly not in the United States.  The people have chosen Trump, so what are the politicians doing?  They simply won’t accept the choice.  We see the same thing all over Europe.  The British military announced that if the Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn were to win the election, they (the British military) would simply not let him take office…
  • Putin fires several high-ranking officials in bid to overhaul Russia’s law enforcement structures
    Russia’s President Vladimir Putin fired several high-ranking law ­enforcement officials on Saturday in one of the biggest overhauls of the country’s power structures in recent years. According to a decree published on the president’s official legal portal, Putin fired the Southern transport public prosecutor Seregei Dmitriev, the head of the Federal Penitentiary Service in Moscow Igor Klimenov, and Deputy Interior Minister of the annexed Crimea region Dmitry Neklyudov. Putin also dismissed, among others, two deputies of Russia’s Investigative Committee, Yuri Nyrkov and Vasily Piskarev. He raised the rank of the Committee’s investigator for special cases case, Lev Gura, to a senior investigator.
  • Russia challenges US after Baltic jet face-off
    Russia says it was right to confront a US Air Force reconnaissance plane over the Baltic Sea on Friday. The Pentagon said a Russian jet fighter acted in an “unsafe and unprofessional manner”, and performed a barrel roll over its plane. Russia said that the American jet had turned off its transponder signal, which helps others identify it. It is the second incident in the Baltic this month in which the US has accused Russian planes of flying aggressively.
  • Trump Picks Former Goldman Partner And Soros Employee As Finance Chairman
    In an oddly ironic twist, today Donald Trump announced that he has picked as chairman of his newly launched fundraising operation none other than a former employee of the bank he has repeatedly criticized in the past, and which he used as a foil to criticize Ted Cruz: Goldman Sachs. Trump announced that heading up his own personal fundraising operation as national finance chairman will be Steven Mnuchin, a long-time business associate, chairman and CEO of the hedge fund Dune Capital. More importantly, however, he spent 17 years at Goldman Sachs where he was most recently a Partner, having built a fortung of $46 million before launching his own hedge fund.
  • Russian nuclear sub fires CRUISE MISSILE in chilling footage of Arctic military drill
    The 120-metre Severodvinsk submarine can be seen sinking slowly below the surface before its Kalibr missile erupts from the waves. Is this a warning shot? This chilling footage shows a Russian nuclear submarine launching a cruise missile from underwater to destroy a coastal training target. The 120-metre Severodvinsk submarine can be seen sinking slowly below the surface of the Barents Sea as part of Russian navy Arctic combat drills. Then the Kalibr missile erupts from the waves in a plume of smoke and streaks away into the distance. A loud rumbling can be heard before the camera zooms in to show the launch site. It is the latest show of strength from the country’s military after a number of close passes by fighter jets near US planes and ships.
  • Warnings mount on world’s corporate debt, China crisis
    Corporate debt has reached extreme levels across much of the world and now far exceeds the pre-Lehman financial bubble by a host of measures, the global banking watchdog has warned in a deeply-disturbing report. “As the credit cycle ages, following years of record-setting bond issuance, there are growing concerns about signs of stress in corporate balance sheets,” said the Institute of International Finance in Washington. The body flagged a double threat: a five-fold rise in company debt to $25 trillion in emerging markets over the past decade; and record junk bond issuance in US and Europe, along with shockingly-irresponsible levels of US borrowing to buy back shares and pay dividends.
  • China’s shadow banking adapts and grows as rules tighten
    New players in China’s shadow banking sector are growing rapidly despite attempts to clamp down on opaque lending, taking advantage of a regulatory anomaly to prosper but also raising the risks of a build-up of debt in the slowing economy. Authorities have sought to rein in the riskiest elements of less-regulated lending after a series of defaults, including a 4 billion yuan ($640 million) credit product backed by Evergrowing Bank in September, because of the danger such debts could pose to the health of the world’s second-largest economy. And a government measure created in 2011 to capture shadow banking, total social financing (TSF), shows some success, with shadow banking contracting in the second half of 2014 to roughly 21.9 trillion yuan ($3.5 trillion), according to a Reuters’ analysis of central bank data.
  • High leverage shifts to China’s bond market after equities deflate
    Just when investor fears over plunging Chinese stocks appear to be calming down, the country’s frothy corporate bond market is stirring concerns it could be the next domino to fall. Investment funds have flowed rapidly into corporate bonds since the stock market collapsed in June, triggering a surge of debt issuance. Demand has compressed corporate and sovereign bond spreads to their narrowest in four years – an oddity, when industrial profits are falling and credit risks are rising. While bond investors say corporate bond prices are not at unreasonable levels, they are wary a sharp correction could be sparked by a bond default from major state-owned companies or a change in monetary policy.
  • High leverage shifts to China’s bond market after equities deflate
    Just when investor fears over plunging Chinese stocks appear to be calming down, the country’s frothy corporate bond market is stirring concerns it could be the next domino to fall. Investment funds have flowed rapidly into corporate bonds since the stock market collapsed in June, triggering a surge of debt issuance. Demand has compressed corporate and sovereign bond spreads to their narrowest in four years – an oddity, when industrial profits are falling and credit risks are rising. While bond investors say corporate bond prices are not at unreasonable levels, they are wary a sharp correction could be sparked by a bond default from major state-owned companies or a change in monetary policy.
  • Chinese police to patrol in Italy in pioneering experiment
    Four Chinese police officers will patrol alongside Italian police in Rome and Milan, as a two-week experiment. The officers, who speak Italian, are being sent in a bid to make Chinese tourists feel safe during the peak tourism period, said Italian Interior Minister Angelino Alfano. “If the experiment is successful, we will expand it to other cities in Italy,” he said. Around three million Chinese tourists visit Italy annually. Mr Alfano said that Italian officers would also soon be heading to Beijing and Shanghai to patrol alongside Chinese officers.
  • HSBC profit falls amid volatile markets
    Banking giant HSBC has reported a 14% drop in profits for the first quarter following “extreme levels of volatility” in financial markets at the start of the year. Profit before tax came in at $6.1bn (£4.17bn) for the three months to March, down from $7.1bn a year ago. However, analysts had expected a far steeper fall in profits. HSBC chief executive Stuart Gulliver said the bank had been “resilient in tough market conditions”. Adjusted pre-tax profits, including currency effects and one-off items, fell 18% to $5.4bn (£3.7bn).
  • European banks near ‘terrifying’ crisis: Raoul Pal
    With European banks sitting at multiyear lows, one widely followed market watcher said some of the biggest ones could go bankrupt. Former hedge fund manager and Goldman Sachs alumnus Raoul Pal said his scenario is one most investors aren’t looking at right now. Pal said the banking issues have the potential to overtake risks associated with China’s growth slowdown and cheap oil. “So many of these [bank stocks] are falling so sharply. I think people haven’t even caught up with what is going on, and that really concerns me,” the founder of Global Macro Investor told CNBC’s “Fast Money” on Tuesday. “I look at the big long-term share charts of them, and I think this looks very terrifying indeed. I have not seen anything like this for a long time.”
  • China halts release of output data for key commodities
    China has suspended the release of output data for several key commodities amid a crackdown on the illegal sale of state statistics by government officials, raising further concerns about transparency in the world’s second-largest economy. With Chinese economic growth at a 25-year low, the lack of such data makes it increasingly difficult for economists to gauge the strength of local demand as Beijing tries to avert a faster slowdown. Key monthly output numbers for several oil and metal products over the first quarter have still not been published.
  • Repair businesses provide antidote to throwaway culture
    The hall of a primary school in Brooklyn is unusually busy for a Saturday morning. This is a “pop-up repair” event, and it is drawing in the crowds. Parents and children from around the neighbourhood have brought in their broken things to be fixed by menders, each with their own area of expertise. At different tables, repairers fix jewellery, electronics and furniture among many other things. This is also an opportunity to teach kids repair skills, and a group of boys is hammering away in the corner. In the midst of this hive of noisy tinkering stands Sandra Goldmark.
  • Russians to get ‘free’ land in bid to boost Far East
    A law offering Russian citizens land in the country’s sparsely populated Far East has come into force – but few think there’ll be a rush to take advantage. Every Russian can soon apply to hold a one-hectare (2.5-acre) patch of state or municipal land – about the size of a rugby field – for five years, the News.ru website reports. After that time, people can either rent or buy their plot, or may be given it free of charge. There’s one condition: they must prove to the local authorities that the land has been used productively. The area up for grabs is vast, stretching from Chukotka – Russia’s most north-eastern point, near Alaska – down to the Chinese border, and as far west as the Sakha Republic (Yakutia) in Siberia. The region’s population has been shrinking steadily since the end of the Soviet Union as residents leave for less remote and more prosperous parts.
  • How to survive a zombie apocalypse: Find a mountain range, keep quiet, mimic the way the undead walk and NEVER fight
    From a remote farmhouse to a shopping mall and even a bar, films are full of suggestions of where to hide out in the event of a zombie apocalypse. But researchers have developed an apocalyptic simulator that suggests the best thing to do is literally run for the hills – if you live in the US at least. Other advice from scientists-turned zombie experts, includes keeping silent and even mimicking zombie behaviour should you run into one of the fictional reanimated corpses with a taste for human flesh.
  • Johns Hopkins Psychiatrist: Transgender is ‘Mental Disorder;’ Sex Change ‘Biologically Impossible’
    Dr. Paul R. McHugh, the former psychiatrist-in-chief for Johns Hopkins Hospital and its current Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry, said that transgenderism is a “mental disorder” that merits treatment, that sex change is “biologically impossible,” and that people who promote sexual reassignment surgery are collaborating with and promoting a mental disorder.
  • The IMF Just Confirmed The Nightmare Scenario For Central Banks Is Now In Play
    The most important piece of news announced today was also, as usually happens, the most underreported: it had nothing to do with US jobs, with the Fed’s hiking intentions, with China, or even the ongoing “1998-style” carnage in emerging markets. Instead, it was the admission by ECB governing council member Ewald Nowotny that what we said about the ECB hitting a supply brick wall, was right. Specifically, earlier today Bloomberg quoted the Austrian central banker that the ECB asset-backed securities purchasing program “hasn’t been as successful as we’d hoped.” Why? “It’s simply because they are running out. There are simply too few of these structured products out there.”
  • Hong Kong Puts J.P. Morgan Chase on Its ‘Name and Shame’ IPO List
    JPMorgan Chase has become the first global investment bank to fall foul of Hong Kong’s stricter IPO sponsorship rules, dealing a blow to its reputation in the region. The Hong Kong stock exchange introduced tougher disclosure rules in 2014, which can make banks criminally liable if a listing prospectus is found to have misled investors. It returned a listing application for Shenhua Health Holdings, a subsidiary of monosodium glutamate (MSG) producer Fufeng Group, on March 29 saying it needed more information, exchange data showed. JPMorgan Securities acted as sole sponsor of the IPO.
  • Zimbabwe to print own version of US dollar
    Zimbabwe is set to print its own version of the US dollar in order to ease a cash shortage in the country. Central bank governor John Mangudya said the cash, known as bond notes, will be backed by $200m (£140m) support from the Africa Export-Import Bank. The specially-designed two, five, 10 and 20 dollar notes will have the same value as their US dollar equivalents. Zimbabwe introduced the US dollar after ditching its own currency in 2009 following sustained hyperinflation. Since then Zimbabweans have been using the dollar as well as a number of other foreign currencies including the South African rand and the Chinese yuan.
  • Migrant crisis: EU plans penalties for refusing asylum seekers
    The European Commission has proposed reforms to EU asylum rules that would see stiff financial penalties imposed on countries refusing to take their share of asylum seekers. The bloc’s executive body is planning a sanction of €250,000 (£200,000; $290,000) per person. The Commission wants changes made to an asylum system which has buckled amid an influx of migrants. The plans would require support from most member states as well as MEPs. EU officials hope that, twinned with a deal with Turkey that has already reduced migrant numbers, tensions over migration within the bloc can be reduced.
  • Freight Rail Traffic Plunges: Haunting Pictures of Transportation Recession
    Total US rail traffic in April plunged 11.8% from a year ago, the Association of American Railroads reported today. Carloads of bulk commodities such as coal, oil, grains, and chemicals plummeted 16.1% to 944,339 units. The coal industry is in a horrible condition and cannot compete with US natural gas at current prices. Coal-fired power plants are being retired. Demand for steam coal is plunging. Major US coal miners – even the largest one – are now bankrupt. So in April, carloads of coal plummeted 40% from the already beaten-down levels a year ago.
  • ECB warns on US economic data leaks 
    US investors may have earned millions of dollars in profits from early access to leaked economic data the European Central Bank (ECB) has alleged. Researchers at the bank studied the movements of trades ahead of several market-moving US economic reports. They included a US consumer confidence index, home sales data and initial US GDP data among others. The study found “strong” evidence of pre-announcement price moves in at least seven cases. The ECB research paper, Price Drift Before US Macroeconomic News, studied investment trading patterns in the case of 21 market-moving economic indicators between 2008 and 2014.
  • The Historic Dow Jones-Silver Ratio Points To $300 Silver
    That’s correct.  Going by the historic Dow Jones-Silver ratio, it points to $300 silver.  This may seem outlandish or a play on hype, but it isn’t.  While many precious metals analysts have forecasted high three-digit silver prices, I didn’t pay much attention to them.  However, after I looked over all the data, $300 silver is not a crazy figure at all. Let me explain.  The U.S. economy suffered a fatal blow in the 1970’s as its domestic oil production peaked and inflation soared.  To protect against the ravages of inflation, investors moved into gold and silver in a big way.  Yes, it’s true that the Hunt’s bought a lot of silver during the 1970’s, but who was buying gold to push its price to $850 in 1980 versus $35 in 1970.  Furthermore, who was buying oil to push its price up to $36 in 1980 from $1.80 in 1970??
  • National Bank to set aside $250-million for bad loans to energy sector
    National Bank of Canada said that it will set aside $250-million to cover bad loans associated with the oil and gas sector, lowering its profit for the second quarter as banks continue to struggle with a depressed energy sector despite a rebound in the price of oil. The announcement from National Bank on Thursday morning follows a similar one earlier this week from Canadian Western Bank, which said that its provisions for loan losses would quadruple to $40-million. National Bank said that its provisions were specifically tied to its portfolio of loans to oil and gas producers and services.
  • The cashless society is under construction
    Two news stories this week are huge reminders that the cashless society already is under construction throughout the Western world. I have added the word Western, because there are rumblnigs from Middle-Eastern countries that Islamic scholars are now working on a new interpretation of Sharia Law to allow gold to be used in commerce. So, while the West is moving toward a digital fiat system, the East is headed in the opposite direction with the intent of placing precious metals at the center of all monetary transactions. What a tragedy for the West.
  • Ron Paul: What America Has Today Is Not Free Market Capitalism
    Capitalism appears to be falling out of favor. Socialism is in vogue. Or at least that’s the impression one gets when talking to millennials in America. A recent Harvard University poll shows that more than half of Americans in the 18-29 age bracket oppose capitalism. Ron Paul appeared on RT America’s Boom or Bust show earlier this week to address this issue and pointed out the problem isn’t a failure of capitalism per se. The problem is that so few people actually understand what capitalism is. In fact, Paul argues that America’s economic system isn’t really free market capitalism
  • What Will Happen When Central Planners Finally Lose Control?
    Today KWN is pleased to share a dramatic chart that begs the question: What will happen when central planners finally lose control? From Jason Goepfert at SentimenTrader:  “Each year, a number of prominent hedge fund managers gather for the Sohn Investment Conference and outline their rationales for long or short investments in stocks or macro views on other markets. One of the managers with a nearly unmatched record over several decades is also among the most negative on stocks. Stan Druckenmiller gave several reasons to be bearish, most of which were unchanged from his outlook last year. One difference was volatility. As he noted, “volatility in global equity markets over the past year, which often precedes a major trend change, suggests that their risk/reward is negative without substantially lower prices…”. It certainly seems like we’ve seen a lot of volatility. At the end of April, the S&P 500 was basically unchanged over the past 12 months (it was within 20 points of where it closed in April 2015). Even though it was essentially unchanged, during the year the S&P moved as much as 18% from high to low. That seems like a lot of movement for not much gain, but in the grand scheme of things, that 18% range is among the tightest in history.”
  • The Next Employment Crisis Is Here: Job Cuts At U.S. Companies Jump 35 Percent In April
    Should we be alarmed that the number of job cuts announced by large U.S. companies was 35 percent higher in April than it was in March?  This is definitely a case where the trend is not our friend.  According to Challenger, Gray & Christmas, U.S. firms announced 65,141 job cuts during April, which represented a massive 35 percent increase over the previous month.  And so far this year overall, job cut announcements are running 24 percent higher than for the exact same period in 2015.  Meanwhile, on Thursday we learned that initial claims for unemployment benefits shot up dramatically last week.  In fact, the jump of 17,000 was the largest increase that we have seen in over a year.  Of course the U.S. economy has been slowing down for quite a while now, and many have been wondering when we would begin to see that slowdown reflected in the employment numbers.  Well, that day has now arrived.
  • Two Billionaires Just Issued Dire Warnings About The Coming Carnage In Global Markets
    As fear around the globe increases and more investors begin to worry about the insane policies of central banks, two billionaires just issued dire warnings. Gerald Celente:  “Stanley Druckenmiller was speaking this week at a major investment conference in New York.  They wanted him to be specific about recommendations and he said, ‘The conference wants a specific recommendation from me?  Get out of the stock market isn’t clear enough? It’s also important to note that Druckenmiller said that ‘Gold remains our largest currency allocation.’  Druckenmiller then went on to warn that the corporations have relied on cheap money from the Federal Reserve by engineering over $2 trillion in acquisitions and stock buybacks in the last year.  He said this is finally showing up on the books of companies, ‘as operating growth in U.S. companies has gone negative year-over-year, while net debt has gone up.’
  • Rail Traffic Depression: 292 Union Pacific Engines Are Sitting In The Arizona Desert Doing Nothing
    We continue to get more evidence that the U.S. economy has entered a major downturn.  Just last week, I wrote about how U.S. GDP growth numbers have been declining for three quarters in a row, and previously I wrote about how corporate defaults have surged to their highest level since the last financial crisis.  Well, now we are getting some very depressing numbers from the rail industry.  As you will see below, U.S. rail traffic was down more than 11 percent from a year ago in April.  That is an absolutely catastrophic number, and the U.S. rail industry is feeling an enormous amount of pain right now.  This also tells us that “the real economy” is really slowing down, because less stuff is being shipped by rail all over the nation.
  • US Commercial Bankruptcies Skyrocket
    One of the big indicators of the end of the “credit cycle” is the number of bankruptcies. During good times, so earlier in the credit cycle, companies borrow money. Then, overconfident and lured by low interest rates and overoptimistic rosy-scenario rhetoric emanating from all sides, they do what the Fed and Wall-Street firms want them to do: they borrow even more money. Then reality sets in, and they buckle under this pile of debt. The bankruptcy filings of Ultra Petroleum and Midstates Petroleum on Friday and Saturday brought oil & gas bankruptcies of companies rated by Fitch and other ratings agencies to 59. These two companies piled $3.1 billion in defaulted junk bonds and another $1.5 billion in defaulted loans on top of the growing mountain of defaulted oil & gas debt.
  • Silent Coup Beginning to Overtake America Now-Larry Nichols
    Former Clinton insider Larry Nichols has worked with, and now against, the Clintons. Nichols has some of the top political and financial connections on the planet.  Nichols hopes the public is finally realizing the enormous power struggle going on.  Nichols explains, “There is no two-party system in the United States of America.  Let’s get that straight.  There is no two-party system, there is one.  Part of it is a red team and part of it is a blue team.   You think you have a choice, but as you know you only have a choice between the two they give you to vote for, but here comes Trump.  Trump doesn’t need their money . . . he will bust up the system, and he will not only bust up the system for the Republican Party, but he will bust up the system (for both parties).  So, there are many establishment Republicans that have said they would rather vote for Hillary than Trump. . . . They must maintain status quo of the system for these power elite people to stay where they want to be.”
  • “Market is on Edge”: US Commercial Real Estate Bubble Pops, San Francisco Braces for Brutal Dive
    Commercial real estate has experienced a dizzying price boom since the Financial Crisis. It goes in cycles. Rising rents and soaring property prices along with cheap credit drive up construction, which takes years from planning to completion, and suddenly all this capacity is coming on the market just as demand begins to sag…. That’s when the cycle turns south. On a nationwide basis, the boom has been majestic. But now, after posting “nearly double-digit gains for each of the past few years,” according to Green Street’s just released Commercial Property Price Index (CPPI) report, “property appreciation has come to a halt.”
  • ‘We’re running a f—ing casino’: Politician tells all in manifesto
    An anonymous congressman has dropped a bombshell election-year book that confirms why Americans hate their national government and have rallied to anti-establishment presidential candidates like Donald Trump. The veteran politician lays bare a rotten and corrupt Congress enslaved by lobbyists and interested only in re-election in an anonymous, 65-page manifesto called “The Confessions of Congressman X.” “Like most of my colleagues, I promise my constituents a lot of stuff I can never deliver,” he admits. “But what the hell? It makes them happy hearing it . . . My main job is to keep my job.”
  • “Markets Have No Purpose Any More” Mark Spitznagel Warns “Biggest Collapse In History” Is Inevitable
    After making over $1 billion in one day last August, and warning that “the markets are overvalued to the tune of 50%,” Mark Spitznagel knows a thing or two about managing tail risk. The outspoken practitioner of Austrian economic philosophy tells The FT, “Markets don’t have a purpose any more – they just reflect whatever central planners want them to,” confirming his fund-management partner, Nassim Taleb’s perspective that “being protected from fragility in the financial system is a necessity rather than an option.”
  • World’s Most Bearish Hedge Fund Manager: “I Think Something Has Changed”
    One month ago, when we updated on the performance of Horseman Global, what until recently was the world’s most bearish hedge fund with a record net short exposure of -98% at least until Icahn Enterprises emerged with its even more gargantuan -149% net short we cited fund CIO Russell Clark who observed the fund’s dramatic -9.6% drop in the month of March, and made it clear that he wasn’t going anywhere because he was confident that the move was nothing but a short squeeze, which – if anything – made Clark even more bearish.
  • What Will The Global Economy Look Like After The “Great Reset”?
    A very common phrase used over the past couple years by the International Monetary Fund’s Christine Lagarde as well as other globalist mouthpieces is the “global reset.” Very rarely do these elites ever actually mention any details as to what this “reset” means. But if you take a look at some of my past analysis on the economic endgame, you will find that they do, on occasion, let information slip which gives us a general picture of where they prefer the world be within the next few years or even the next decade.
  • Obama: TTIP Necessary So As To Protect Megabanks From Prosecution
    On May 7th, Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten, or German Economic News, headlined, “USA planen mit TTIP Frontal-Angriff auf Gerichte in Europa” or “U.S. Plans Frontal Attack on Europe’s Courts via TTIP,” and reported that, “America’s urgency to sign TTIP with Europe has solid reason: Megabanks must protect themselves from claims by European investors who allege that they were cheated during the debt crisis. … The U.S. Ambassador to Italy has now let the cat out of the bag on this — probably unintentionally.”
  • Kerry slams Trump’s wall, tells grads to prepare for ‘borderless world’
    Secretary of State John Kerry took a shot at Donald Trump during his Friday commencement speech to Northeastern University graduates, by saying no wall is big enough to keep dangerous terrorists out of the United States. “Many of you were in elementary school when you learned the toughest lesson of all on 9/11,” he said in his speech at Boston Garden. “There are no walls big enough to stop people from anywhere, tens of thousands of miles away, who are determined to take their own lives while they target others.”
  • Lifespan gap ‘widening between rich and poor’
    The gap between the lifespans of rich and poor people in England and Wales is rising for the first time since the 1870s, researchers have suggested. Everyone is living longer but rich people’s lives are extending faster, the City University London study says. Better life expectancy narrowed the gap in the early 20th Century but this trend reversed for men in the 1990s. Author Prof Les Mayhew from Cass Business School said the difference was mainly due to “lifestyle choices”.
  • News Corp reports $149m quarterly loss
    Media giant News Corp has reported a net loss of $149m (£102.6m) for the three months to March. That compares with a profit of $23m in the same quarter last year. The group suffered as a result of a one off legal charge of $280m at its News America Marketing business. Revenue also fell – by 7.3% to $1.89bn. News Corp, controlled by Rupert Murdoch, gets over half its revenue from outside the US and it blamed “currency headwinds” for the drop.
  • Greece hit by general strike over pension and tax change
    Greeks have begun a three-day general strike in protest at further austerity measures that are being proposed in return for more bailout money. Shipping, public transport and civil service departments were among sectors hit in a bid to stop the introduction of tax and pension changes. The sudden 48-hour strike on Friday and Saturday was called in addition to action previously planned for Sunday. Greece’s left-led government is due to a vote on the tax changes on Sunday. The next tranche of about €5bn (£4bn) is overdue, after talks with Greece’s international lenders faltered over the pace of reforms.
  • IMF tells euro zone finance ministers to start talks on Greek debt relief – FT 
    The head of the International Monetary Fund urged euro zone finance ministers to start talks on Greece’s debt relief together with discussions on Athens’ reform programme, according to a letter published by the Financial Times on Friday. The finance ministers of the euro zone’s 19 countries will gather on May 9 in Brussels for an extraordinary meeting on Greece. They are meant to discuss Greece’s reform programme and a new set of contingency measures that Athens should adopt to ensure it will achieve agreed fiscal targets in 2018. Successful reforms implementation in Athens would unlock bailout funds under a financial programme agreed by Greece and euro zone countries in July and would pave the way for talks on Greece’s debt relief.
  • Russia’s car workers who struggle on no pay
    In a sparsely furnished, single-room flat in Togliatti, Natalia Sizova counts the hours until she sees her five-year-old son again. Six months ago she had so little food she decided he should go and live in a care centre across town. Natalia is one of 2,000 people in this city, 1,000km (620 miles) east of Moscow, who work for car-parts maker AvtoVAZagregat. Their salaries have not been paid for months. Togliatti is not alone. Hundreds of Russian companies, big and small, are withholding salaries. The explanations may differ: mismanagement, bad economy or plain criminality. But for workers the end result is the same.
  • Eurogroup meeting, 09/05/2016
    The Eurogroup discussed the state of play of the first review of Greece’s macroeconomic adjustment programme. It welcomed a package of policy reforms, which will cover: the pension system, income tax and VAT, public sector wage bill measures, privatisation strategy, the issue of non-performing loans. The Eurogroup concluded that further work was needed by the Greek authorities and the institutions on a mechanism concerning additional contingency measures. These measures will come into force only if additional effort is needed to reach the agreed primary surplus targets. The conclusion of the first review will pave the way for the disbursement of further financial assistance for Greece, following the implementation of prior actions by Greece and the relevant national procedures in the other euro area member states.
  • Iain Duncan Smith: EU favours ‘haves over the have-nots’
    The European Union is a “force for social injustice” which backs “the haves rather than the have-nots”, Iain Duncan Smith has said. The ex-work and pensions secretary said “uncontrolled migration” drove down wages and increased the cost of living. He appealed to people “who may have done OK from the EU” to “think about the people that haven’t”. But Labour’s Alan Johnson said the EU protected workers and stopped them from being “exploited”. The former Labour home secretary accused the Leave campaign of dismissing such protections as “red tape”.
  • America’s infrastructure US$1.44 trillion short through 2025: report
    America will fall US$1.44 trillion short of what it needs to spend on infrastructure through the next decade, a gap that could strip 2.5 million jobs and US$4 trillion of gross domestic product from the economy, a report from a society of professional engineers said on Tuesday. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) estimated that through 2025, the United States has funded only about 56 percent of its needed infrastructure spending. The nation needs to spend US$3.32 trillion to keep its ports, highways, bridges, trains, water and electric facilities up to date but has funded only US$1.88 trillion of that, ASCE said. The shortfall rises to US$5.18 trillion through 2040 without new funding commitments. U.S. GDP was US$18 trillion in 2015, according to the International Monetary Fund.
  • Left in the dark as Venezuela’s crisis deepens
    I have seen worse conditions in a hospital. I have seen patients even more deprived of the medicines they need. But rarely have I seen an institution that appears to have gone into such steep decline as University Hospital, Caracas. A long queue stretches from the hospital entrance as people wait in line for the lift. That’s lift in the singular, because only one has been operating for the past few months. It is unclear whether the others are broken or are simply not being used because there is insufficient electrical power. Once you reach the wards, you find there is not enough electricity even for lighting, and some of the corridors are in darkness. Perhaps it is a good thing that the toilets and shower rooms are dark, as it provides a modicum of privacy. Cubicle doors are broken, hanging off hinges. I saw patients on a cardiac ward forced to wash in a half-wrecked stall, with a small piece of plastic drawn across.
  • UK trade deficit biggest since 2008 in first quarter
    The UK’s trade deficit for the first quarter is at its biggest since 2008. The gap between imports and exports for the first three months of 2016 stands at £13.3bn, up from £12.2bn in the fourth quarter of 2015, says the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Analysts said this was more evidence of the weight of global economic weakness on the UK. One described the figures as “truly horrible” UK economic growth has already slowed to 0.4% in the first quarter. The ONS said the UK trade gap widened over the quarter because of a £1.9bn rise in imports such as mechanical machinery, cars, clothing, jewellery and footwear.
  • Banker given record sentence for insider dealing
    A former senior investment banker and an accountant have been jailed for their part in the UK’s “largest and most complex insider dealing investigation”. Former Deutsche Bank managing director Martyn Dodgson was sentenced to four and a half years in prison, the longest term for the crime in the UK. Businessman Andrew Hind received three and a half years. They were convicted on Monday of conspiring to “insider deal”. The sentences at Southwark Crown Court bring to a close the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) “Operation Tabernula” investigation which began in 2007. The FCA described it as its largest and most complex insider dealing investigation. It said the offending was “highly sophisticated” and that the investigation was “demanding and time-consuming”.
  • The Coming War of Central Banks 
    History has shifted, and we’re leaving the era of central bank convergence and entering the era of central bank divergence, i.e. open conflict. In the good old days circa 2009-2014, central banks acted in concert to flood the global banking system with easy low-cost credit and push the U.S. dollar down, effectively boosting China (whose currency the RMB/yuan is pegged to the USD), commodities, emerging markets and global risk appetite.
  • SWIFT says commercial bank hit by malware attack like $81M Bangladesh hack
    SWIFT, the global financial messaging network that banks use to move billions of dollars every day, warned on Thursday of a second malware attack similar to the one that led to February’s $81 million cyberheist at the Bangladesh central bank. The second case targeted a commercial bank, SWIFT spokeswoman Natasha de Teran said, without naming it.
  • Equity outflows hit nearly $90bn in 2016 
    Outflows from equities have hit nearly $ 90bn this year, after investors pulled $ 7.4bn from global funds in the fifth consecutive week of redemptions as they retreated into haven assets. The withdrawals have put equities “firmly” on track for their biggest year of redemptions since 2011, according to data provider EPFR. Fears over growth in Japan and the eurozone, as well as concerns over US corporate profits, are being blamed.
  • UK Banks close more than 600 branches over the past year
    More than 600 bank branches have closed across Britain over the past year, with rural areas worst affected, according to figures obtained by the BBC. Parts of Wales, Scotland and south west England lost the most per population between April 2015 and April 2016. Five of the top 10 areas losing banks are in Wales: Powys, Denbighshire, Gwynedd, Conwy, and Carmarthenshire. The banks said that demand for branches was falling, as more people switch to banking online.
  • Third quarter investor flight wiped record $10 trillion off global stocks: BAML
    Investors pulled a combined $75 billion from U.S. and emerging market equity funds in the third quarter, wiping a record $10 trillion off the value of global equities in the period, according to EPFR Global and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. In data released late on Thursday, Boston-based fund tracker EPFR Global said European and Japanese funds were the only equity classes to receive net inflows between July and September, most likely motivated by the possibility of more central bank money-printing. Funds pulled $35.2 billion from dedicated U.S. equity funds over the quarter, according to EPFR, bringing year-to-date outflows to $138 billion.
  • Bank of Canada sees lower neutral interest rate
    While the global economy faces a number of risks, including the potential for a shock from China, the most likely scenario is that growth continues, with some headwinds starting to slowly fade, a senior Bank of Canada official said on Wednesday. Nonetheless, the world economy’s potential growth will be lower than it was 10 years ago, partly due to demographic shifts that policy cannot fully address in the short term, Senior Deputy Governor Carolyn Wilkins said. “There are a lot of downside risks, but I would say though that the most likely thing is that the economy is going to keep growing,” Wilkins told a panel. “There’s not the typical inflation pressures you see that would result in very abrupt increases in interest rates and that’s often what triggers downturns.”
  • Venezuela crisis: Maduro threatens seizure of closed factories
    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has threatened the seizure of factories that have stopped production, and the jailing of their owners. In a speech to supporters in the capital Caracas, he said the country had to recover the means of production, to counter its deep economic crisis. On Friday, he introduced a new, nationwide state of emergency. Opposition protesters have been rallying in Caracas to push for a recall vote to eject him from power. Mr Maduro said the state of emergency was needed to combat foreign aggression, which he blamed for Venezuela’s problems. And he said military exercises would take place next weekend to counter “foreign threats”.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

Latest News Articles – April 28, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From April 22, 2016 to April 28, 2016:

  • Putin’s Decade-Old Dream Realized as Russia to Price Its Own Oil
    Russian President Vladimir Putin is on the verge of realizing a decade-old dream: Russian oil priced in Russia. The nation’s largest commodity exchange, whose chairman is Putin ally Igor Sechin, is courting international oil traders to join its emerging futures market. The goal is to increase revenue from Urals crude by disconnecting the price-setting mechanism from the world’s most-used Brent oil benchmark. Another aim is to move away from quoting petroleum in U.S. dollars.
  • Biggest Financial Bubble in History Will Engulf World-Gregory Mannarino 
    Financial analyst and stock trader Gregory Mannarino says pay no attention to the rising stock market because it is “fake.” Mannarino says, “The manipulation is absolutely epic.  We have never seen anything like it.  There is going to be a horrible price to pay for this.  Why?  Because it will correct to fair market value.  There is no doubt in my mind that all of this will correct to fair value.  All these distortions can only go so far, and we know this.  We have seen this throughout history without exception. . . .  We have the biggest bubble in the history of the world, and that is the debt bubble that has re-inflated this stock market bubble, it will burst.  It will burst because every single financial bubble in history, without exception, has burst before it.  This one is going to burst too, but this one is going to engulf the world.  It’s going to be unlike anything we’ve seen in the history of the world, and there is no doubt that the middle class will no longer exist when this occurs.  It’s going to be a massive transfer of wealth to these financial institutions that are going to go short all of this.  It is legal theft on a magnitude and scale that is unimaginable.”
  • How Puerto Rico’s debt bomb could blow up on the mainland
    Puerto Rico, an awkward legacy of America’s 1898 testosterone spill, the Spanish-American War, is about to teach two things that few Americans know: If conditions get bad enough there, its residents, who are American citizens, can come here. And if Congress does not deal carefully with the mess made by the government in San Juan, Congress will find itself rescuing governments in Springfield, Ill., and other state capitals. Puerto Rico’s approximately 18 debt-issuing entities have debts — approximately $72 billion — they can’t repay. The Government Development Bank might miss a $422 million payment due in May, and the central government might miss a $2 billion payment in July. Congress won’t enact a US taxpayer “bailout.”
  • Puerto Rico’s Governor Says the Island Will Default on Monday
    Puerto Rico’s Government Development Bank has a $422 million payment due to creditors that day. Puerto Rican officials talked tough ahead of a major debt payment due on Monday, with the U.S. territory’s governor predicting default, and chances slipping for a restructuring deal with creditors. Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla said “there will be a default on Monday,” adding, “I don’t think there is a deal on the table that avoids a default.”
  • Yen Surges Most Since 2010 as BOJ Refrains From Adding Stimulus
    The yen surged by the most since 2010 after the Bank of Japan maintained its record stimulus, surprising traders who had expected additional easing and forcing them to exit bets on declines in the currency. Japan’s currency rose against all of its 16 major peers as BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda and his colleagues opted to refrain from more policy action and to take more time to assess the impact of their negative interest-rate program. A slight majority of economists surveyed by Bloomberg predicted the central bank would respond to a strengthening yen that’s cast a shadow over prospects for higher wages and investment.
  • COMEX Default Is Coming Soon-Bill Holter
    According to financial writer Bill Holter, we are getting to the end of the gold and silver price suppression game. Holter contends, “Because the inventories are so small, silver and gold registered categories (at COMEX) total about $1.2 billion.  That’s nothing in today’s world.  That’s less than one day’s interest the U.S. pays on its debt.  I don’t see this going for a long time because inventories are so small. . . . This whole suppression game on gold and silver was brought about to protect the reserve currency, the dollar, because gold is a direct competitor with the dollar.  If the silver market blows up, and I shouldn’t say if, it’s when the silver market blows up, that’s going to blow the gold market up, and that is basically going to expose the fact the West is a fraud, that the gold and silver markets were a fractional reserve Ponzi scheme.  That’s going to blow confidence, and you are going to see derivatives blow up all over the world, and markets will be closed in a couple of days.”
  • US-Style Mortgage Fraud a ‘Nuclear Bomb’ to Australian Banks
    The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC), which regulates financial services companies,has the backbone of a chicken wing when it comes to enforcing the rule of law; this is widely recognized in Australia and resulted in a Parliamentary inquiry. If any politician believes that ASIC is a “tough cop on the beat,” they should seriously reconsider their opinion on this issue. Under the pomp and ceremony of the government’s decision to levy the banks to fund ASIC’s prolonged $400 million+ annual fishing vacation is its pursuit of catching tadpoles in the open seas while leaving sharks and barracudas to freely roam. Unfortunately for the regulator, there is a new term Australians will become accustomed to. Control fraud. It refers to fraud committed by the high-ranking employees of a corporation: executives and managers, typically a bank. It’s a crime that ASIC has decided neither to investigate nor prosecute, leaving borrowers on their own with no pennies to spare and nowhere to turn to.
  • Hong Kong Is Building The Biggest Gold Vault And Trading Hub In The World
    Less than a week after the official launch of the Chinese Yuan-denominated gold fix on the Shanghai Gold Exchange, a historic move which represents “an ambitious step to exert more control over the pricing of the metal and boost its influence in the global bullion market” and which will gradually transform the market of paper gold trading, in the process shifting the global trading hub from west (London) to east (China), overnight Hong Kong’s Chinese Gold and Silver Exchange (CGSE) Society revealed plans to do something similar for physical gold when it announced plans for what may end up being the biggest gold vault in the world.
  • Corporations Are Defaulting On Their Debts Like It’s 2008 All Over Again
    The Dow closed above 18,000 on Monday for the first time since July. Isn’t that great news? I truly wish that it was. If the Dow actually reflected economic reality, I could stop writing about “economic collapse” and start blogging about cats or football. Unfortunately, the stock market and the economy are moving in two completely different directions right now. Even as stock prices soar, big corporations are defaulting on their debts at a level that we have not seen since the last financial crisis. In fact, this wave of debt defaults have become so dramatic that even USA Today is reporting on it…
  • 47 Percent Of Americans Cannot Even Come Up With $400 To Cover An Emergency Room Visit
    If you had to make a sudden visit to the emergency room, would you have enough money to pay for it without selling something or borrowing the funds from somewhere?  Most Americans may not realize this, but this is something that the Federal Reserve has actually been tracking for several years now.  And according to the Fed, an astounding 47 percent of all Americans could not come up with $400 to pay for an emergency room visit without borrowing it or selling something.  Various surveys that I have talked about in the past have found that more than 60 percent of all Americans are living to paycheck to paycheck, but I didn’t realize that things were quite this bad for about half the country.  If you can’t even come up with $400 for an unexpected emergency room visit, then you are just surviving from month to month by the skin of your teeth.  Unfortunately, about half of us are currently in that situation.
  • Halliburton says it cut 6,000 jobs in first quarter, delays earnings call
    Halliburton Co said on Friday that it reduced headcount by more than 6,000 during the first quarter due to the prolonged slump in oil prices. The oilfield services provider said revenue dropped 40.4 percent to $4.2 billion in the quarter ended March 31. The company also said it would now hold its earnings conference call on May 3, instead of April 25, to accommodate the April 30 deadline for its merger with Baker Hughes Inc.
  • UC Berkeley Touts $15 Minimum Wage Law, Then Fires Hundreds Of Workers After It Passes
    Labor Markets: Hundreds of employees at the University of California at Berkeley are getting schooled in basic economics, as the $15 minimum wage just cost them their jobs. Too bad liberal elites “fighting for $15” don’t get it. A week after California Gov. Jerry Brown signed the state’s $15 minimum wage boost into law, UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks sent a memo to employees announcing that 500 jobs were getting cut.
  • Economy In Decline: Apple Reports Massive Revenue Decline As iPhone Sales Plummet Dramatically
    Corporate revenues in the United States have been falling for quite some time, but now some of the biggest companies in the entire nation are reporting extremely disappointing results.  On Tuesday, Apple shocked the financial world by reporting that revenue for the first quarter had fallen 7.4 billion dollars compared to the same quarter last year.  That is an astounding plunge, and it represents the very first year-over-year quarterly sales decline that Apple has experienced since 2003.  Analysts were anticipating some sort of drop, but nothing like this.  And of course last week we learned that Google and Microsoft also missed revenue and earnings projections for the first quarter of 2016.  The economic crisis that began during the second half of 2015 is really starting to take hold, and even our largest tech companies are now feeling the pain.
  • Apple shares plunge 7% on first drop in iPhone sales ever
    Apple’s streak of iPhone-powered sales ended Tuesday when the company reported its first quarterly sales drop in more than a decade. The news sent Apple’s (AAPL) stock into a tailspin with shares plunging 6.5% to $97.55 in late trading Wednesday. CEO Tim Cook signaled a saturated smartphone market would keep a lid on sales, although he suggested the company’s new entry-level smartphone, the SE, promised to eventually goose sales among Android switchers and in emerging markets such as China and India.
  • Bank-hacking malware discovery leaves 11,000 global financial institutions on high alert
    Over ten thousand banks and financial institutions are being urged to remain vigilant after the secure Swift (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) system – used to send messages between global firms – was reportedly compromised by the sophisticated hacking scheme that targeted the Bangladesh central bank in March 2016. The news comes after security researchers at British defence contractor BAE Systems claimed to have uncovered a stealthy piece of malware used in the Bangladesh attack, which resulted in the loss of $81m (£56m, €71m). Previously, investigators said that cybercriminals broke into the bank’s computer networks to steal vital access credentials. However, fresh research claims that Swift was also likely compromised during the hack in order to erase records of malicious financial transfers.
  • How California’s minimum wage increase will add more robotic automation in logistics
    California’s minimum wage hikes are going to force logistics firms with low-paid warehouse workers to invest more heavily in robotic technology, according to Inland Empire economist John Husing. Husing said most of Southern California’s warehouse employees who earn minimum wage are working part time. But the newly approved pay hikes that will boost the state’s current minimum wage of $10 per hour to $15 per hour by 2022 will still place financial pressures on logistics companies. And they’ll be looking for ways to increase efficiency while reducing costs.
  • The Ugly Truth About A $15 Minimum Wage
    The Service Employees International Union spent 2015 expanding its campaign for a $15 minimum wage to other industries. In recent nationwide protests, the union focused again on its original target: Fast food companies, and McDonald’s MCD +0.19% in particular. I worked for the company for three decades, and served as its USA President for 13 years. I can assure you that a $15 minimum wage won’t spell the end of the brand. However it will mean wiping out thousands of entry-level opportunities for people without many other options.
  • Australian dollar drops sharply after soft inflation data
    The Australian dollar dropped two-thirds of a US cent on Wednesday after a lower-than-expected inflation reading saw markets calculating an increase in the risk of an interest rate cut. The Aussie fell to US$0.7678 to show a loss of 0.9 per cent on the day. It touched a 10-month peak of US$0.7836 last week.
  • US new home sales fall amid weakness in the West
    New U.S. single-family home sales unexpectedly fell in March, but the decline was concentrated in the West region, suggesting that the housing market continued to strengthen. The Commerce Department said on Monday new home sales decreased 1.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 511,000 units. February’s sales pace was revised up to 519,000 units from the previously reported 512,000 units.
  • Another iconic British high-street brand has gone under
    “Well, we have been declining for years,” reflected one despondent shop assistant at British Homes Stores (BHS) after learning that the department store had filed for administration on April 25th. The news has come as no great surprise to many of BHS’s staff and still less to the retail analysts who have been following the firm’s slow demise. Unless a buyer is found soon, the company could well be broken up, its 164 stores and stock sold off to repay creditors. That would spell the end of BHS, founded in 1928, as a high-street clothing and home-goods chain, and disaster for its 11,000 employees. Losses on this scale would simply compound the gloom that accompanied the thousands of recent job losses in the British steel industry, with more, probably, to come.
  • Dallas Fed manufacturing index falls more than forecast
    The Dallas Federal Reserve’s manufacturing index contracted for a 16th straight month, falling to -13.9 in April. Economists had forecast that the index rose a bit to -10 from -13.6 in March, according to Bloomberg. Although the headline index slipped, factory activity expanded for a second straight month, and production output grew. New orders, shipments and wages also increased. But labor-market indicators showed that employment was still weak.
  • Austin Reed enters administration putting 1,200 jobs at risk
    Menswear retailer Austin Reed has entered administration, putting almost 1,200 jobs at risk. A statement from the administrators blamed a “challenging” retail market and cash flow difficulties. The company, which has 100 standalone stores and is stocked in a further 50, has struggled to compete and has seen its sales fall. Austin Reed began in 1900 as a tailor and counted Winston Churchill as a customer. “Austin Reed is a well-regarded and iconic brand,” said Peter Saville, one of the newly appointed administrators. “We are confident that it is an attractive proposition for a range of potential buyers.” The menswear brand is the second UK retailer to enter administration in as many days, following the failure of BHS.
  • America’s Department Stores May Have to Close Hundreds of Locations
    That’s a quarter of their stores. To get back to their pre-recession productivity peak, the nation’s top department stores would have to close hundreds of locations, according to a leading real estate analysis firm. Chains such as Sears, J.C. Penney and Macy’s have been hit by a double whammy: the loss of market share to Amazon and specialty stores, coupled with chronic drops in shopper traffic to malls. Collectively, they would need to close some 800 stores for sales per square foot to go back to 2006 levels, Green Street Advisors wrote in a recent research note. That translates to 25% of all department stores nationwide, whose list also includes Dillard’s, Bon-Ton and Nordstrom.
  • “A Total Game Changer” – From Over-Population To De-Population
    Strangely, the world is suffering from two seemingly opposite trends…overpopulation and depopulation in concert.  The overpopulation is due to the increased longevity of elderly lifespans vs. depopulation of young populations due to collapsing birthrates.  The depopulation is among most under 25yr old populations (except Africa) and among many under 45yr old populations. So, the old are living decades longer than a generation ago but their adult children are having far fewer children.  The economics of this is a complete game changer and is unlike any time previously in the history of mankind.  None of the models ever accounted for a shrinking young population absent income, savings, or job opportunity vs. massive growth in the old with a vast majority reliant on government programs in their generally underfunded retirements (apart from a minority of retirees who are wildly “overfunded”).  There are literally hundreds of reasons for the longer lifespans and lower birthrates…but that’s for another day.  This is simply a look at what is and what is likely to be absent a goal-seeked happy ending.
  • Gerald Celente – China Stock Market Crash To Create Full-Blown Global Panic, But Gold Will Shine
    Today the top trends forecaster in the world told King World News that China’s stock market crash will crash along with their economy and this will create a full-blown global panic, but gold will shine. Gerald Celente:  “George Soros came out earlier in the week warning about the Chinese debt bubble, which is estimated now to be at about $30 trillion, up from $500 billion twenty years ago… “Soros said: “Stimulus can buy you additional time, but it makes the problem that much bigger. That’s where we are.” So when they talk about China’s growth now at 6.7 percent, they leave out the fact that the Chinese banks pumped in some $212 billion in new local currency loans in March.  There was also the social financing of another $360 billion in the month of March.
  • Goldman Sachs opens to the masses
    For almost 150 years Goldman Sachs has been the go-to bank of the rich and powerful. But now the Wall Street titan is opening up to the masses on Main Street by offering online savings accounts for as little as $1 on deposit.Goldman’s shift down market comes as the bank is under pressure to develop new streams of funding. Weak first-quarter results from the big US banks have highlighted the challenges faced by their investment banking units, under pressure from volatile markets and tight regulations. Analysts last week fired a barrage of questions at the US banks, and at Goldman in particular, wondering why they were not doing more to reboot their businesses. Goldman posted the lowest quarterly return on equity – just 6.4 per cent, on an annualised basis – of the past four years.
  • “The Damage Could Be Massive” – How Central Banks Trapped The World In Bonds
    Yields on $7.8 trillion of government bonds have been driven below zero by worries over global growth, forcing investors looking for income to flood into debt with maturities of as long as 100 years. Worse still, as Bloomberg reports, central banks’ policy is exacerbating matters, as the unprecedented debt purchases to spur their economies have soaked up supply and left would-be buyers with few options. This has driven the ‘duration’ – or risk sensitivity – of the bond market to a record high, meaning, as one CIO exclaimed, even with a small increase in rates “the positions are so huge that the damage can be massive… People are complacent.” Decelerating economic growth worldwide, combined with more aggressive stimulus measures by the Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank, pushed average yields on $48 trillion of debt securities in the BofA Merrill Lynch Global Broad Market Index to a record-low 1.29 percent this month, compared with 1.38 percent currently.
  • In 1 Out Of Every 5 American Families, Nobody Has A Job
    If nobody is working in one out of every five U.S. families, then how in the world can the unemployment rate be close to 5 percent as the Obama administration keeps insisting? The truth, of course, is that the U.S. economy is in far worse condition than we are being told. Last week, I discussed the fact that the Federal Reserve has found that 47 percent of all Americans would not be able to come up with $400 for an unexpected visit to the emergency room without borrowing it or selling something. But Barack Obama and his minions never bring up that number. Nor do they ever bring up the fact that 20 percent of all families in America are completely unemployed.
  • Stricken shipping firm sells off its ships… for $1 each
    A heavily indebted shipping firm has been forced to sell off its fleet for as little as $1 a piece as the global shipping crisis takes its toll. Goldenport Holdings said on Friday that it would sell six of its eight vessels for a token consideration of $1 each, while it would look for the best price it can get on its two remaining ships. The company will also delist from the London Stock Exchange after its debt pile spiralled “significantly higher” than the value of its fleet. The embattled shipping group has been locked in negotiations with its lenders, including RBS, since January this year in a bid to restructure its loan facilities, but within the last few weeks shareholders have given the go ahead to sell off the loss-making ships.
  • Venezuela cuts power for four hours a day to save energy
    Venezuela is introducing power cuts of four hours a day from next week to deal with a worsening energy crisis. The cuts will last for 40 days as the country struggles under a severe drought limiting hydroelectric output. It is the latest setback to Venezuela’s economy which has been hit by a sharp fall in the price of its main export, oil. The country’s main brewer, Polar, also says it will stop production because it has no dollars to buy grain abroad. The company, which produces 80% of the country’s beer, says 10,000 workers will be affected by the stoppage.
  • This virtually guarantees that your taxes are going through the roof
    I was thinking about this the other day when I read an article in the Financial Times about the “disastrous” $3.4 trillion funding hole in the United States public pension system. To be clear, they’re not talking about the Social Security mess. That’s an additional $40+ trillion funding shortfall. The $3.4 trillion gap is referring primarily to city and state pension funds; these pension funds essentially have way too many liabilities and obligation, with too few assets to support them. And the problem gets worse each year. Now, pension funds in the Land of the Free are supposed to be backed up and insured by a federal agency known as the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation (PBGC). The PBGC is sort of like the FDIC for pension funds. There’s just one small problem: in addition to all of these city and state pension funds that are under water, the PBGC is INSOLVENT. In its most recent annual report, the PBGC (which ensures the pension funds of more than 40 million Americans), showed net equity of NEGATIVE $76 billion. So not only do these pension funds need a bailout, but the government organization that is supposed to insure the pension funds needs a bailout…
  • A Few Troubling Facts
    BANKING BUSINESS – Just 4 banks in the United States hold 91% of all derivatives nationwide as of the end of 2015.  The face amount of the derivative contracts held by all insured commercial banks and savings associations was $181.0 trillion as of 12/31/15.  76% of the $181.0 trillion were interest rate derivative contracts (source: Office of the Comptroller of the Currency).   I am sure glad that the government has spread the risk in derivatives around.
  • The Fed Sends a Frightening Letter to JPMorgan and Corporate Media Yawns 
    Yesterday the Federal Reserve released a 19-page letter that it and the FDIC had issued to Jamie Dimon, the Chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase, on April 12 as a result of its failure to present a credible plan for winding itself down if the bank failed. The letter carried frightening passages and large blocks of redacted material in critical areas, instilling in any careful reader a sense of panic about the U.S. financial system.
  • “China Is Hoarding Crude At The Fastest Pace On Record”
    In the aftermath of China’s gargantuan, record new loan injection in Q1, which saw a whopping $1 trillion in new bank and shadow loans created in the first three months of the year, many were wondering where much of this newly created cash was ending up. We now know where most of it went: soaring imports of crude oil. We know this because as the chart below shows, Chinese crude imports via Qingdao port in Shandong province surged to record 9.86 million metric tons last month based on data from General Administration of Customs.
  • US banks endure biggest drop in revenues since 2011
    The six biggest US banks have suffered their steepest decline in quarterly revenues since 2011, after a profound slump on Wall Street overshadowed a boost from their consumer businesses. JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo generated total revenues of $98bn in the first quarter, down 9 per cent from a year earlier — the steepest fall in five years, according to a Financial Times analysis of Bloomberg data. Deep cost cuts failed to counteract the fall in revenue so the six lenders also saw their collective net income plummet 24 per cent year on year to $18bn.
  • Why Are The Chinese Stockpiling Silver? Big Price Move Coming?
    It looks like something big may happen to the silver market and the Chinese are preparing for it.  After China launched it’s new Yuan Gold Fix today, the prices of the precious metals surged.  At one point today, silver was up 5%.  Silver is now trading at the $17 level, a price not seen in over a year. Even though gold has taken center stage today due to Chinese rolling out there new Yuan Gold fix, something quite interesting has been taking place in the silver market over the past six months.  While Comex silver inventories have been declining from a peak of 184 million oz (Moz) in July 2015 to 154 Moz today, silver stocks at the Shanghai Futures Exchange have been doing the exact opposite.
  • Mario Draghi Explains Why QE ‘Will’ Work This Time – ECB Press Conference Live Feed
    As expected today’s ECB statements were a snoozer, and likely Mario Draghi’s official statement will be too – “more of the same.” However, the real fun and games will come as he combats questions on 1) the lack of effectiveness of QE so far (just wait, any day now it will work), and 2) helicopter money (“whatever it takes”). He better offer some hope for moar as EUR is surging into the meeting…
  • “The Men Behind The Curtain Are Being Revealed” – CEO Says Real-World Pricing To Return To Gold & Silver Markets
    Astute observers of financial markets, especially in the precious metals sector, have long argued that small concentrations of major market players have been manipulating asset prices. Last week those suspicions were confirmed when Deutsche Bank, one of the world’s leading financial institutions, not only admitted to regulators that they have been involved in the racket, but that they were prepared to turn over records implicating many of their cohorts in a global scheme to suppress prices. In his latest interview with SGT Report, straight-shooting Callinex Mines CEO Max Porterfield explains that now that the men behind the curtain are being revealed, asset prices in precious metals, base metals and other commodities will return to more natural pricing mechanisms based on core supply and demand fundamentals.
  • The SUNE Finally Sets: SunEdison Files For Bankruptcy
    It’s over. After months of arguing that everything will be ok as investors flee the troubled company, it is now officially over: *SUNEDISON FILES FOR BANKRUPTCY AFTER ACQUISITION BINGE. As Bloomberg notes, Terraform Power and Global are not part of the filing. The company reported between $10-50 billion in assets and $10-50 billion in debt.
  • In “Unprecedented Snub”, Saudi Arabia Demands “Recalibration Of Relationship” With U.S.
    As Obama concludes his fourth and supposedly final meeting to Saudi Arabia as U.S. president, the White House was quick to explain where relations with the Saudi Kingdom lay, and as CNN reported this morning, moved to tamp down suggestions that ties with Saudi Arabia are fraying, with administration officials saying that President Barack Obama “really cleared the air” with King Salman at a meeting Wednesday. Which is strange because that is not how the other side saw it: even as White House officials stressed that the leaders made progress, a prominent member of the Saudi royal family told CNN “a recalibration” of the U.S.-Saudi relationship was needed amid regional upheaval, dropping oil prices and ongoing strains between the two longtime allies.
  • FEDERAL EUROPE PLOT: EU draws up plans for United States of Europe behind Britain’s back
    PLANS for a United States of Europe have been drawn up in a bid to give Brussels bureaucrats an iron grip over the continent, it has been revealed. In a direct challenge to David Cameron’s claims of British sovereignty, Germany, France, Italy and Luxembourg signed a document last September in Rome calling for the creation of a “general union of states”, which has only now come to light. The further integrated union would not only take a central hold over economic and fiscal matters, as well as internal markets, but would also include social and cultural affairs and foreign, security and defence policy of member states.
  • George Soros Warns “China Resembles US In 2008”, Hard Landing “Practically Unavoidable”
    China’s credit growth in March (and $1 trillion surge in total social financing in Q1) is a “warning sign” according to billionaire George Soros, “because it shows how much work is needed to stop the slowdown.” Speaking at an event in new York this evening, Soros commented on “troubling developments” in China, the anti-corruption drive’s impact on capital outflows and the real-estate bubble “feeding on itself.” His conclusion, rather ominously, was that despite all the naysayers and fiction-peddlers, China “resembles US in 2007-8,” before credit markets seized up and spurred a global recession. As Bloomberg reports, Billionaire investor George Soros said China’s debt-fueled economy resembles the U.S. in 2007-08, before credit markets seized up and spurred a global recession.
  • One of the nation’s largest pension funds could soon cut benefits for retirees
    More than a quarter of a million active and retired truckers and their families could soon see their pension benefits severely cut — even though their pension fund is still years away from running out of money. Within the next few weeks, the Treasury Department is expected to announce a crucial decision on whether it will approve reductions to one of the country’s largest multi-employer pension plans. The potential cuts are possible under legislation passed by Congress in 2014 that for the first time allowed financially distressed multi-employer plans to reduce benefits for retirees if it would improve the solvency of the fund. The law weakened federal protections that for more than 40 years shielded one of the last remaining pillars that workers could rely on for financial security in retirement.
  • Negative rates put pressure on central banks to take risks
    Investors ranging from small German savers to global life insurers have long complained about central banks’ use of negative interest rates. Now, however, another group is feeling the pain from negative rates — central banks themselves. European and Japanese rate cuts are putting pressure on many central banks’ returns — a source of income used to cover running costs and to provide finance ministries with profits on which they have come to rely. A poll of reserve managers from 77 central banks, entrusted with reserves worth $6tn last August, found a clear majority were changing their portfolio management strategy as a result — including taking steps such as buying riskier assets.
  • Abu Dhabi Fund Calls 1MDB in Default After Missed Payment
    A key Middle Eastern business partner of 1Malaysia Development Bhd. said the Malaysian state development fund has failed to make a $1.1 billion payment as part of a debt-restructuring agreement and that as a result a debt deal between the two entities has been terminated. The announcement, made in a London Stock Exchange filing by the International Petroleum Investment Company, an Abu Dhabi sovereign-wealth fund, marks a deterioration in relations between the two funds and signals fresh complications for 1MDB as it tries to work its way out from under billions of dollars of debt.
  • Saudi Arabia takes out $10bn in bank loans
    Saudi Arabia is raising $10bn from a consortium of global banks as the kingdom embarks on its first international debt issuance in 25 years to counter dwindling oil revenues and reserves. The landmark five-year loan, a signal of Riyadh’s newfound dependence on foreign capital, opens the way for Saudi to launch its first international bond issue. It comes as the sustained slump in crude encourages other Gulf governments, such as Abu Dhabi, Qatar and Oman, to tap international bond markets. The oil-rich kingdom, which last weekend blocked a potential deal among oil producers to freeze output and bolster prices, has burnt through $150bn in financial reserves since late 2014 as its fiscal deficit is set to widen to 19 per cent of gross domestic product this year.
  • “Swimming Naked” – Chinese Corporate Bond Market Worst Since 2003
    A week ago we highlight the “last bubble standing” was finally bursting, and as China’s corporate bond bubble deflates rapidly, it appears investors are catching on to the contagion possibilities this may involve as one analyst warns “the cost has built up in the form of corporate credit risks and bank risks for the whole economy.” As Bloomberg reports, local issuers have canceled 61.9 billion yuan ($9.6 billion) of bond sales in April alone, and Standard & Poor’s is cutting its assessment of Chinese firms at a pace unseen since 2003. Simply put, the unprecedented boom in China’s $3 trillion corporate bond market is starting to unravel. As Bloomberg notes, China’s leaders face a difficult balancing act.
  • China Launches Yuan Gold Fix To “Exert More Control Over Price Of Gold”
    Overnight a historic event took place when China, the world’s top gold consumer, launched a yuan-denominated gold benchmark as had been previewed here previously, in what Reuters dubbed “an ambitious step to exert more control over the pricing of the metal and boost its influence in the global bullion market.” Considering the now officially-confirmed rigging of the gold and silver fix courtesy of last week’s Deutsche Bank settlement, this is hardly bad news and may finally lead to some rigging cartel and central bank-free price discovery. Or it may not, because China would enjoy nothing more than continuing to accumulate gold at lower prices.
  • Eric Hunsader: The Financial System Is “Absolutely, Positively Rigged”
    Eric Hunsader, founder of Nanex, has been at the vanguard of warning about the dangers and the rampant fraud that the rise of high-frequency trading (HFT) algorithims have let loose in today’s financial markets. While he usually feels like a lone voice in a world happy to deceive itself, he was shocked to receive a $750,000 whistleblower award from the SEC for his efforts. He’s been sadly less shocked to see that since the award was publicly announced, the abuses he reported have only become more extreme and frequent.
  • China debt load reaches record high as risk to economy mounts
    China’s total debt rose to a record 237 percent of gross domestic product in the first quarter, far above emerging-market counterparts, raising the risk of a financial crisis or a prolonged slowdown in growth, economists warn. Beijing has turned to massive lending to boost economic growth, bringing total net debt to Rmb163 trillion ($25 trillion) at the end of March, including both domestic and foreign borrowing, according to Financial Times calculations. Such levels of debt are much higher as a proportion of national income than in other developing economies, although they are comparable to levels in the U.S. and the eurozone. While the absolute size of China’s debt load is a concern, more worrying is the speed at which it has accumulated — Chinese debt was only 148 percent of GDP at the end of 2007.
  • China Retaliates In Trade Wars – Increases Steel Output To Record High
    A funny thing happened when US slapped a major tariff on China’s steel exports… prices exploded higher. But the almost 50% surge in steel prices since mid-December back to 15-month highs have left traders equally split on what happens next. Will record production levels exaggerate a global glut amid tumbling exports and rising tariffs, or will China’s trillion-dollar surge in credit fuel yet more so-called “iron rooster” projects driving domestic demand even higher. For now, it appears the former is more likely as US Trade reps suggested further protectionism looms. Since Dec 23rd 2015 when the US imposed a 256% tariff on Chinese steel imports, composite steel prices have soared almost 50% even as exports have slipped…
  • How Systems Break: First They Slow Down
    The reality that cannot be spoken is that all the financial systems we believe are permanent are actually on borrowed time. One way we can judge this decline of resilience is to look at how long it takes systems to recover when they are stressed, and to what degree they bounce back to previous levels. Another is to look at the extremes the system reaches without returning to “normal”: for example, interest rates, which rather than normalizing after seven years of suppression are being pushed to negative rates by increasingly desperate central bankers. The key insight here is that financial systems and indeed economies function as natural systems. Central planning/central banker manipulation appears to control the system, but this control masks the reality that the system is increasingly fragile and prone to collapse, not just from internal dynamics but as a direct result of central bank manipulation. The warning signs of fraying resilience are all around us.
  • How The American Neoconservatives Destroyed Mankind’s Hopes For Peace
    When Ronald Reagan turned his back on the neoconservatives, fired them, and had some of them prosecuted, his administration was free of their evil influence, and President Reagan negotiated the end of the Cold War with Soviet President Gorbachev. The military/security complex, the CIA, and the neocons were very much against ending the Cold War as their budgets, power, and ideology were threatened by the prospect of peace between the two nuclear superpowers. I know about this, because I was part of it. I helped Reagan create the economic base for bringing the threat of a new arms race to a failing Soviet economy in order to pressure the Soviets into agreement to end the Cold War, and I was appointed to a secret presidential committee with subpeona power over the CIA. The secret committee was authorized by President Reagan to evaluate the CIA’s claim that the Soviets would prevail in an arms race. The secret committee concluded that this was the CIA’s way of perpetuting the Cold War and the CIA’s importance. The George H. W. Bush administration and its Secretary of State James Baker kept Reagan’s promises to Gorbachev and achieved the reunification of Germany with promises that NATO would not move one inch to the East.
  • Intel to lay off 11% of workforce in big shift from PCs
    Intel will lay off 11% of its global workforce, up to 12,000 employees, a painful downsizing aimed at accelerating its shift away from the waning PC market to one more focused on cloud computing and connected devices. In an email to employees, CEO Brian Krzanich said that after the restructuring, “I am confident that we’ll emerge as a more productive company with broader reach and sharper execution.” Intel CFO Stacy Smith said that half the workforce reduction, 6,000 people, will be accomplished by the end of this year.
  • Chinese Launch Gold Price Benchmark Further Increasing Influence on World Stage
    In another sign that it is becoming a major player in the world gold market, China launched twice-daily price fixing on Tuesday. According to a Bloomberg report, the move is an attempt to establish a regional benchmark that will bolster its influence in the global gold market: “The Shanghai Gold Exchange set the price at 256.92 yuan a gram ($1,233.85 an ounce) at the 10:30 a.m. session after members of the exchange submitted buy and sell orders for metal of 99.99 percent purity. Members include Chinese banks, jewelers, miners and the local units of Standard Chartered Plc and Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd., according to the bourse.”
  • Goldman Sachs profit slumps for fourth straight quarter
    Goldman Sachs Group Inc’s profit slumped for the fourth straight quarter as market volatility hit the company’s bond trading and investment banking businesses. Goldman – the last of the big US banks to release first-quarter results – reported a 56.3 per cent fall in net income applicable to common shareholders to $1.2 billion, or $2.68 per share, for the three months ended March 31. That compared to $2.75 billion, or $5.94 per share, a year earlier, when the Wall Street bank recorded its best quarterly profit in five years.
  • Why stronger growth may lie ahead after March housing starts swoon 
    Disregard the dismal housing starts data out Tuesday, many analysts say: a spring rebound is in the cards. Starts plunged nearly 9% in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.09 million, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That badly missed estimates – economists surveyed by MarketWatch had expected a pace of 1.17 million – but many analysts think the data is unreliable and the overall trend in construction is up.
  • Dollar Falls to Lowest Level Since June as Housing Starts Slump
    The dollar reached a 10-month low Tuesday after a government report showed new-home construction in the U.S. slipped more than projected in March, clouding Federal Reserve plans to boost interest rates. The U.S. currency weakened against most of its major peers in New York as the central bank is scrutinizing data to measure whether the economy is meeting its goals of full employment and a 2 percent inflation rate. The yen had also declined as oil and stocks rallied, damping haven demand.
  • UnitedHealth Flees Sinking Obamacare After Posting $1 Billion In Losses
    UnitedHealth, America’s largest health insurance provider, says it will exit from most obamacare exchanges next year, citing more than $1 billion in losses. CEO Stephen Hemsley says his company “cannot continue to broadly serve the market created by the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansion due partly to the higher risk that comes with its customers,” as reported by the Associated Press. The announcement came after UnitedHealth revised its projection for 2016 to $650 million in losses, up from a previous estimate of $525 million, after ending 2015 some $475 million in the red. As the AP tells it, UnitedHealth had “second thoughts” almost immediately after announcing it would expand participation from four state exchanges to 34.
  • Greenspan Admits The Fed’s Plan Was Always To Push Stocks Higher
    Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan admitted in an interview with Sara Eisen that quantitative easing did what it was supposed to do, which was to inflate stock prices and drive multiple expansion. He was confused as to why things such as corporate earnings, capital spending, and productivity have declined given how much QE was pumped into the system. The answer to the riddle of course, is that QE was never intended to help fix anything fundamentally, it was as Kyle Bass said recently, simply a mechanism to transfer wealth and make the rich richer.
  • These Maps Show How Vast New Infrastructure Is Bringing the World Together
    There’s no better way to score points for gravitas in today’s media than claiming that the world is falling apart. Just say on air that, “This is the most dangerous time since the peak of the Cold War,” and witness your star rise. But such talking heads are responding to yesterday’s news and extrapolating the worst scenarios, whereas the underlying trends seem in fact to point in a very different direction. If you want to understand the world of tomorrow, why not just look at a good map? For my new book, Connectography, I researched every single significant cross-border infrastructure project linking countries together on every continent. I worked with the world’s leading cartography labs to literally map out what the future actually — physically — will look like.
  • Americans Spend More On Taxes Than On Housing, Food And Clothing 
    Three weeks ago, a recent report by Pew revealed something stunning: one third – the poorest – of US households can no longer afford even the most basic necessities: food, rent and transportation. The main reason for this: while the median income had fallen by 13% from 2004 levels over the next decade, expenditures had increased by nearly 14%, driven almost entirely by soaring rent costs. “This change in the expenditure-to-income ratio in the years following the financial crisis is a clear indication of why and how households feel financially strained” Pew concluded.
  • OK, I Get it, this Junk-Bond Miracle-Rally Is Doomed – And since stocks follow junk bonds…
    Junk bonds started to decline in June 2014, and earlier this year threatened to implode. Contagion was spreading from the collapsing energy sector to the brick-and-mortar retail sector, telecom (Sprint), the media (iHeartMedia), and other sectors. It was really ugly out there. As junk bond prices got beaten down, yields soared. The average yield of bonds rated BB, the top end of the junk-bond scale, according to the BofA Merrill Lynch index, went from 4.2% to 7.07% between June 2014 and February 11, 2016. For CCC-and-lower-rated junk bonds – the bottom end of the scale, deemed to be within uncomfortable proximity to default – the yield of the BofA Merrill Lynch index shot up from around 8% to 21.5% between June 2014 and February 12, 2016. But then the Fed heard the screaming from Wall Street about the chaos in the markets, with junk bonds losing their grip and large swaths of stocks careening deeper into a bear market. Incapable of any independence whatsoever, it brushed rate hikes off the table and changed its verbiage. What ensued was a marvelous rally all around, particularly in bonds.
  • China Ocean Freight Index Collapses to Record Low – Relentless deterioration meets stunning overcapacity
    The amount it costs to ship containers from China to ports around the world, a function of the quantity of goods to be shipped and the supply of vessels to ship them, just dropped to a new historic low. The China Containerized Freight Index (CCFI) tracks contractual and spot-market rates for shipping containers from major ports in China to 14 regions around the world. It reflects the unpolished and ugly reality of the shipping industry in an environment of deteriorating global trade. For the latest reporting week, the index dropped 0.6% to 636.14, its lowest level ever. It has plunged 41% from the already low levels in February last year, and 36% since its inception in 1998 when it was set at 1,000.
  • “War, Confiscation Or Redistribution” – An Anecdote On Systemic Reset
    Central banks face a different problem altogether. They need to get people who’ve saved time to exchange it for something other than clever inventions that store it. They’ve largely failed. So now, everything that stores time is extremely expensive and offers little or negative return, while the pace of economic activity slows.
  • Obama Administration Makes Stunning Admission: “Seed Money For Al Qaeda Came From Saudi Arabia”
    Following a dramatic deterioration in official diplomatic channels between the US and Saudi Arabia when over the weekend the Saudis threatened the U.S. with dumping billions in Treasuries if Congress were to pass a bill probing into their alleged support of Sept 11 terrorists in the aftermath of last weekend’s 60 Minutes report on the classified “28 pages” from the Septemeber 11 commission, moments ago the Obama administration made a stunning admission, when for the first time it revealed on the record that the Saudis were the original source of funding for Al Qaeda. As Politico reports, Obama’s deputy national security adviser, Ben Rhodes, while speaking to David Axelrod in Monday’s edition of “The Axe Files” podcast said that the government of Saudi Arabia had paid “insufficient attention” to money that was being funneled into terror groups and fueled the rise of Al Qaeda when he was asked about the validity of the accusation that the Saudi government was complicit in sponsoring terrorism.
  • Sears closing 10 stores and 68 Kmarts
    The company made the announcement Thursday, saying the move is an effort to accelerate its plan to close its unprofitable stores and return to profitability. Shares rose more than 6% after hours on the news. Sears said in a statement that employees affected by these closings will get severance and the chance to apply for open positions at local Kmart and Sears stores. The company didn’t say how many jobs will be affected.
  • Mobs of Angry Investors Fight Market Rigging, Maul Deutsche Bank in Class-Action Lawsuit, other Banks Next
    Prior to last week, Deutsche Bank made headlines for a string of huge losses and massive exposure to risky derivatives. The last time the firm’s shares traded at prices this low, the world was in the midst of 2008’s financial apocalypse. Deutsche Bank didn’t need more bad news, but a group of investors who brought suit against the massive German bank for cheating them by rigging the London “fix” price for gold and silver certainly must be smiling. Last week, the bank offered to settle their class action suit for an undisclosed amount.
  • This Also Happened the Last 2 Times before Stocks Crashed
    Something that happened just before the prior two market crashes, and the recessions that accompanied them, including the Great Recession, is happening again: the boom in financial engineering is starting to backfire against the companies doing it. Their credit ratings are getting slashed, and their borrowing costs are therefore rising, even while they need newly borrowed money to buy back even more shares to keep the charade going. Until the music stops. Downgrades ascribed to “shareholder compensation,” as Moody’s calls share buybacks and dividends, have been soaring, according to John Lonski, Chief Economist at Moody’s Capital Markets Research. The moving 12-month sum of Moody’s credit rating downgrades of US companies, jumped from 32 in March 2015, to 48 in December 2015, and to 61 in March 2016, nearly doubling within a year.
  • U.S. Economy 2016: 3 Classic Recession Signals Are Flashing Red
    Those that were hoping for an “economic renaissance” in the United States got some more bad news this week.  It turns out that the U.S. economy is in significantly worse shape than the experts were projecting.  Retail sales unexpectedly declined in March, total business sales have fallen again, and the inventory to sales ratio has hit the highest level since the last financial crisis.  When you add these three classic recession signals to the 19 troubling numbers about the U.S. economy that I wrote about last week, it paints a very disturbing picture.  Virtually all of the signs that we would expect to pop up during the early chapters of a major economic crisis have now appeared, and yet most Americans still appear to be clueless about what is happening.
  • PBOC calls for broadening use of IMF’s basket of reserve currencies
    Chinese central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan on Saturday called for broadening the use of the International Monetary Fund (IMF)’s basket of reserve currencies to advance the reform of the International Monetary System (IMS). “The IMS has inherent deficiencies and faces new challenges from globalization, financial innovation, and volatility in capital flows,” Zhou said in a statement for the meeting of the International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC), the IMF’s policy setting committee, on the sidelines of the spring meetings of the IMF and the World Bank. The IMF announced it will add the Chinese yuan to its basket of reserve currencies last year. The addition will take effect Oct. 1, 2016, with the yuan having a 10.92 per cent weighting in the basket, the IMF said. “The SDR has the potential to resolve the existing deficiencies in the IMS,” Zhou said in Washington, referring to the Special Drawing Right, an international reserve asset created by the IMF in 1969.
  • Precious Metals Puke – ‘Someone’ Dumps $2 Billion Of Gold Into Futures Markets
    What goes up… must not be allowed to… Someone just decided this was the perfect time to dump over $2 billion worth of notional paper gold onto the markets… Over 16,000 gold contracts (and 7,500 silver) were dumped in that 5/10 minutes segment. It appears Draghi did not like the impression of his impotence that precious metals were suggesting. It appears the Gold/Silver ratio at 72x was a big buying opportunity?
  • Collapse Strategist: “We’re In The Terminal Phase… Economic Pain Like We’ve Never Seen Before”
    At this point, despite major highs in U.S. stock markets and reassurances from no less than President of the United States himself that the economy is sound, one only need to look around to understand that we are on the cusp of what researcher and collapse strategist Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse Blog calls the “early chapters of a total meltdown.” In his latest interview with Future Money Trends Snyder notes that the fundamental economic problems we face can be seen across the globe. The United States, Europe, Asia, and South America are all crashing and no one will be immune to what comes next.
  • Empire of Empty Dreams: “Chances of Securing a Better Life Are Declining”
    The next few years will strip away the illusions of “growth” and reveal which dominates our society and economy: privilege or social mobility. Among the many lessons of empires is one shared by virtually every empire:once the privileged few limit the rise of those from humble origins (i.e. social mobility), the empire is doomed to rising instability and collapse. The greater the concentration of wealth and power, the lower the social mobility; the lower the social mobility, the greater the odds that the system will collapse when faced with a crisis that it would have easily handled in more egalitarian times.
  • The Ruble Is the Most Gold-Backed Currency in the World
    The economic situation is increasingly chaotic. The world economy is out of control. We target inflation, and it doubles. Talk about transitioning to a new direction results in a further degradation of the economy. ‘De-offshorization’ got us more foreign equity in our corporations and industries. Import substitution resulted in further price rises. This growing crisis is due to two things: our increasing dependence on the America-centric financial system, and American aggression, which we must resist. There’s clearly a dissonance between our financial and economic dependence on a foreign system and the  need to pursue a sovereign foreign policy in order to survive.
  • Opinion: Why this market rally looks like a classic investor trap 
    The U.S. stock market’s rally from its dismal start to the year appears to be a classic investor trap. Many investors have the tendency to jump in a bit too early on first signs of improvement in economic indicators or positive news. But the markets are primed to trap the solvent investors and fool the most rational among us. Nowadays, in a world of high-frequency trading and speculative derivatives, it is hard for even the most experienced investors to stay rational, let alone be clear on whether to buy or hold or sell. This is why so many experts on Wall Street are giving so much conflicting advice. Current forecasting science and predictive models are not yet developed enough to time the market for the next month or quarter.
  • China Embracing Gold in Advance of Post Dollar Era
    To challenge the US dollar hegemony and increase its power in the global realm of finance, China has a potent gold strategy. Whilst the State Council is preparing itself for the inevitable decay of the current international monetary system, it has firmly embraced gold in its economy. With a staggering pace, the government has developed the Chinese domestic gold market, stimulated private gold accumulation and increased its official gold reserves in order to ensure financial stability and support the internationalisation of the renminbi.
  • When Money Fails
    Money seldom fails, but occasionally, it does. It failed in Germany and Austria 1921-23. It failed in Hungary after World War II. It failed in Zimbabwe in 2008-9, when the rest of the world was in a recession.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.

Latest News Articles – April 21, 2016

From James Harkin (Webmaster & Editor of LindseyWilliams.net). Here is a summary of articles of interest from around the world for this week. Please LIKE the Lindsey Williams Online Facebook Page to see stories posted daily regarding the current state of the economy around the world.

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Lindsey Williams - Latest News Articles

Latest News From April 15, 2016 to April 21, 2016:

  • ALERT: Legend Just Warned That All Hell Is About To Break Loose
    Egon von Greyerz:  “The global economy turned down in earnest in 2006, but with a massive worldwide printing and lending program, the world has had a temporary stay of execution. But the effect of this fabricated money has now come to an end…
  • Great Dangers Now Threaten To Destroy The Global Financial System
    John Embry:  “Eric, last week was interesting when you tied together a number of developments that occurred.  Deutsche Bank publicly acknowledged its manipulation of the silver fix.  But this is just the tip of the iceberg considering the true scope of the manipulation in silver being conducted primarily by JP Morgan…
  • Nine Meals from Anarchy
    In 1906, Alfred Henry Lewis stated, “There are only nine meals between mankind and anarchy.” Since then, his observation has been echoed by people as disparate as Robert Heinlein and Leon Trotsky. The key here is that, unlike all other commodities, food is the one essential that cannot be postponed. If there were a shortage of, say, shoes, we could make do for months or even years. A shortage of gasoline would be worse, but we could survive it, through mass transport or even walking, if necessary.
  • Chart: US Produces More Energy Than Ever Before
    America is producing more energy than ever before thanks to a boom in oil and natural gas, according to a Monday report by the Energy Information Administration (EIA). American oil production increased by 8 percent and natural gas increased by 5 percent in 2015, according to the EIA report. The boom in oil and gas helped offset the enormous 10 percent decline in U.S. in coal production. The increase had little to due with wind or solar power, as American production of green energy remained flat. Overall, America has produced more energy 6 years in a row.
  • World Economy Is Terminally Broken After 50 Years Of Misgovernment
    In a world of manipulated economic figures and markets, it is not always easy to maintain your sanity. The world economy is now based on fantasy and hope and has very little to do with reality. But the problem is that virtually nobody understands this. Whether it is a bank analyst or a Nobel Prize winner in economics, they are all spreading the same false message. The Western press and news media are just reporting what governments and the elite are telling them. There is no analysis and no attempt to find the truth in anything. This is why we are now in an era of indoctrination and total brainwashing of the masses. Most people are totally apathetic and incapable of realising that they are being led down a path, both morally and economically, that will make life on earth a lot more difficult not just for the present generation but probably for several generations to come.
  • Last time the Saudis opened the spigots the stock market crashed and Soviet Union collapsed
    If there’s a certain retro feeling in the air, it’s not just because everyone’s talking about a Donald Trump presidential run and a song called “Me Myself & I” is in the charts. Oil markets are also starting to have a distinctly 1986 feel to them. The collapse of the weekend’s oil talks in Doha heralds a phase where open spigots will drive prices lower once again. Brent crude fell as much as 7 per cent when it opened after the meeting broke up in disarray. Saudi Arabia and other Gulf producers refused to cut production unless they could get a matching agreement from an Iran that hadn’t even bothered to attend the talks.
  • America 1956 vs. America 2016
    Is America a better place today than it was back in 1956?  Of course many Americans living right now couldn’t even imagine a world without cell phones, Facebook or cable television, but was life really so bad back then?  60 years ago, families would actually spend time on their front porches and people would actually have dinner with their neighbors.  60 years ago, cars were still cars, football was still football and it still meant something to be an American.  In our country today, it is considered odd to greet someone as they are walking down the street, and if someone tries to be helpful it is usually because they want something from you.  But things were very different in the middle of the last century.  Men aspired to be gentlemen and women aspired to be ladies, and nobody had ever heard of  “bling”, “sexting” or “twerking”.  Of course life was far from perfect, but people actually had standards and they tried to live up to them.
  • Jubilee Jolt: In Historic Move G20 Wipes Out Tax Haven Anonymity – ‘Market Integrity At Stake’
    Breaking news from Agency France Presse (AFP): The G20 has just “embraced a crackdown” on tax haven-corporations and shell companies that will savagely and decisively rip away the last remaining vestiges of financial privacy here on Earth. This is a huge change, almost incomprehensible. In a single month, from start to finish, privacy assurances that have existed for centuries are being stripped away. Less than two weeks ago, the Panama Papers (PP) were strategically leaked and we reported, “Financial Elite’s Attack on Worldwide Privacy“.  We said it was almost surely a planned leak by financial elites to bring in more worldwide capital controls.
  • Is Deutsche Bank’s Gold Manipulation The Main Scam Or Just A Side-Show?
    For years now, the easiest way to finesse a debate over whether precious metals markets are manipulated has been to say, “well, if they’re not manipulated they’re the only market that isn’t.” That was unsatisfying, though, because as the big banks got caught scamming their customers on interest rates, mortgage bonds, forex and commodities trades, those markets (presumably) began to operate more-or-less honestly. Gold and silver, meanwhile, kept right on acting strangely, for instance plunging in the middle of the night on no news but massive futures volume, to the detriment of honest investors and traders who naively bet their capital on fundamentals. The (already huge) amount of money thus stolen from gold bugs kept rising.
  • Institutionalized Lying—— Why Central Bankers Never See Bubbles
    Every day there is more confirmation that the casino is an exceedingly dangerous place and that exposure to the stock, bond and related markets is to be avoided at all hazards. In essence the whole shebang is based on institutionalized lying, meaning that prouncements of central bankers, Wall Street brokers and big company executives are a tissue of misdirection, obfuscation and outright deceit. And they are self-reinforcing, too. As we indicated in our post over the weekend (The Keynesian House Of Denial), it’s all definitional by the lights of today’s central bankers and their Wall Street camp followers. Since the former are busy “accommodating”, massaging and “stimulating” economies all around the world—- bad things like recessions and stock market busts just can’t happen.
  • How to Profit as the New Gold Standard Takes Hold
    Has Doug Casey convinced the government to bring back the gold standard? Over the past two weeks, Doug has been working on a special project. He’s spent a lot of time with high-ranking government officials, trying to persuade them to back the currency with gold. Believe it or not, the government is taking Doug’s ideas seriously… Unfortunately, we’re not talking about the U.S. government. As you may know, America gave up on the gold standard in 1971. Prior to that, folks could exchange their U.S. dollars for a fixed amount of gold. This kept the government honest and prevented it from printing too much money. Today, U.S. dollars are merely paper, backed by nothing. Or, as Doug says, the dollar is an “I.O.U. nothing.”
  • The oil deal that never came to be
    ANALYSIS: It was supposed to be the easiest deal ever reached among key oil market players, a mere formality. Eighteen countries were gathering in the Qatari capital of Doha to rubber-stamp the first joint agreement between major OPEC and non-OPEC nations in 15 years, tackling a huge global glut after flooding the market for two years. The text was agreed and the timeframe was clear. Oil prices were rising. Traders were calling the event boring. Then, the first clouds began to appear.
  • We might be repeating the mistakes of the 1999 bubble and crash
    The stock market may be in danger of repeating some very bad history. The current market environment is looking a whole lot like the 1998-1999 stock market bubble, and the crash of 2000 may not be far behind, said Michael Hartnett of Bank of America Merrill Lynch. “It could simply be 1998/99 all over again. After all, a ‘speculative blow-off’ in asset prices is one logical conclusion to a world dominated by central bank liquidity, technological disruption & wealth inequality,” he wrote in a note Sunday.
  • Wall Street banks are getting hammered by the markets — but not the businesses you’d expect
    Volatile financial markets took a bite out of earnings at big U.S. banks during the first quarter – not just in trading but wealth management, too. On Monday, Morgan Stanley joined Wells Fargo & Co and Bank of America Corp in reporting weaker wealth management profits, citing less client activity and “an unfavorable market environment” – not to mention fewer trading days than the year-ago period.
  • Why All Central Planning Is Doomed to Fail
    We’re still thinking about how so many smart people came to believe things that aren’t true. Krugman, Stiglitz, Friedman, Summers, Bernanke, Yellen – all seem to have a simpleton’s view of how the world works. A bunch of famous people with a simpleton view of how the world works…who not only seriously think the economy can and should be “planned”, but arrogantly believe they are the ones who should do it. It’s a bit like the crazy guy who doesn’t know he’s crazy.
  • Nomi Prins Reveals A Shocking Private Conversation About The Fed’s Manipulation Of The World
    Everything that is happening in the world right now is very connected and predicated on the zero interest rate policy that emanates from the Federal Reserve.  Even though we are in the 8th year of that policy and we talk about what Janet Yellen is going to say and do, what’s actually happening is that speculative money, cheap money, continues to flow in and out of places legally and illegally.  As an example, the Panama Papers story broke while I was in Brazil.  But legally or illegally, the money finds places to be involved for a short-term speculative bet and then it leaves much more quickly.
  • What Puerto Rico can teach rural California about minimum wage increases
    They’re looking for work in Colusa County, California, but it’s hard to find. It’s also hard to believe there could be a small corner of America – where the national unemployment rate on the national level is down to 5 percent – where more than one-in-five working age adults are unemployed. But that’s the reality in the county of 21,000 people in the Central Valley, a part of the state where nearly every county has unemployment rates two, three or, in Colusa County, four times the national average. No jobs and no work means other problems soon follow.
  • As Minimum Wage Marches Toward $15, Small Businesses Adapt
    In the aftermath of California and New York becoming the first states to raise the statewide minimum wage to $15, some small businesses with hourly workers are rethinking how they can absorb the increase. The owners of Dog Haus, a chain of about 20 franchise restaurants in the West, may have customers pick up their meals at the counters in two company-owned stores instead of using servers to carry food to tables in the two company-owned stores. The Pasadena, California-based company is also looking at hiring more experienced workers who can shoulder more responsibilities than entry-level staffers who earn minimum wage. For example, a cashier might now take on some administrative tasks. That way, Dog Haus could hire fewer people.
  • California minimum wage hike hits L.A. apparel industry: ‘The exodus has begun’
    Los Angeles was once the epicenter of apparel manufacturing, attracting buyers from across the world to its clothing factories, sample rooms and design studios. But over the years, cheap overseas labor lured many apparel makers to outsource to foreign competitors in far-flung places such as China and Vietnam. Now, Los Angeles firms are facing another big hurdle — California’s minimum wage hitting $15 an hour by 2022 — which could spur more garment makers to exit the state. Last week American Apparel, the biggest clothing maker in Los Angeles, said it might outsource the making of some garments to another manufacturer in the U.S., and wiped out about 500 local jobs. The company still employs about 4,000 workers in Southern California.
  • Saudi Arabia Warns of Economic Fallout if Congress Passes 9/11 Bill
    Saudi Arabia has told the Obama administration and members of Congress that it will sell off hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of American assets held by the kingdom if Congress passes a bill that would allow the Saudi government to be held responsible in American courts for any role in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The Obama administration has lobbied Congress to block the bill’s passage, according to administration officials and congressional aides from both parties, and the Saudi threats have been the subject of intense discussions in recent weeks between lawmakers and officials from the State Department and the Pentagon. The officials have warned senators of diplomatic and economic fallout from the legislation.
  • Connecticut Chooses to Cut Jobs Over Increased Taxes in Budget Crisis
    Like some other states, Connecticut is facing a budget shortfall. And in part because of its shrinking finance sector and dependence on personal income taxes for revenue, state lawmakers, a majority of whom are Democrats, are finding themselves in a fiscal pickle. Forced to rely heavily on its highest earners to fill the state’s coffers, and fearful of alienating more of the highest-earning residents after a tax increase last year, legislators are not entertaining additional taxes on the rich.
  • What Did Fed Chairman Yellen Tell Obama?
    This week, President Obama and Vice President Biden held a hastily arranged secret meeting with Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen. According to the one paragraph statement released by the White House following the meeting, Yellen, Obama, and Biden simply “exchanged notes” about the economy and the progress of financial reform. Because the meeting was held behind closed doors, the American people have no way of knowing what else the three might have discussed. Yellen’s secret meeting at the White House followed an emergency secret Federal Reserve Board meeting. The Fed then held another secret meeting to discuss bank reform. These secret meetings come on the heels of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s estimate that first quarter GDP growth was .01 percent, dangerously close to the official definition of recession.
  • OPEC’s oil crisis talks stumble as Iran refuses to freeze output
    Oil prices could fall again as big exporting nations struggled to agree a plan to freeze production, despite holding crisis talks over the weekend to search for a way to push up prices. Prices have fallen precipitously over the past two years as a fall in demand combined with a big rise in production from sources such as shale flooded the market with oil. Ministers from OPEC countries including Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Venezuela plus other major oil producers such as Russia met in Doha to discuss a plan to limit production and protect their profits. But Iran decided to stay away from the meeting as it does not want to cap its own production, in a move which could limit the effectiveness of any plan struck by the other nations – and which has raised tensions with Saudi Arabia.
  • HSBC: Helicopter money is already here and no-one has noticed
    Central banks have a problem. Their usual methods of stimulating the economy, like ultra-low interest rates, don’t seem to be working as well as they used to. Inflation and growth are stuck at low levels in the Eurozone after years of near-zero interest rates. It’s time to get a bit more radical and central banks have talked of using so-called helicopter money – which involves creating new money and giving it directly to people to spend on whatever they want. The American economist Milton Friedman first proposed the idea of helicopter money in 1969 i n a paper called The Optimum Quantity of Money.
  • Coal giant Peabody Energy files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy
    The nation’s largest coal company, Peabody Energy (BTU), filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Wednesday as the coal industry grapples with the fallout of low natural gas prices, costly regulations and China’s economic slowdown. St. Louis-based Peabody, which traces its corporate roots to 1883, had warned in March that “sustained depressed” coal prices had placed it on the edge of insolvency.
  • 101 Years Of The Income Tax (In 1 Depressing Table)
    More is always better, right? As we noted previously, if you hate taxes, you are far from alone.  According to NBC News, here are some of the things that Americans would rather do than pay taxes… Six percent would rather sell a kidney, eight percent would rather name their first-born “Taxes,” and 11 percent would rather spend three years cleaning the bathrooms at noro-torious Chipotle. Of course our system was never intended to be like this anyway.  Our founders hated taxes, and they fought a very bitter war to escape the yoke of oppressive taxation.  During his very first inaugural address, Thomas Jefferson clearly expressed what he thought about taxes… “A wise and frugal government… shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government.” Why couldn’t we have listened to him?
  • U.S. Industrial Production Fell in March
    U.S. industrial output slowed in March, a sign that weakness persists for manufacturers and the energy industry. Industrial production—a broad gauge of output across U.S. factories, mines and power plants—decreased a seasonally adjusted 0.6% in March from the prior month, the Federal Reserve said Friday. Output has fallen for six of the past seven months. From a year earlier, industrial production decreased 2% in March. Manufacturing output, the largest component of the index, fell 0.3% in March.
  • US Industrial Production Plunges As March Auto Manufacturing Tumbles Most Since 2008
    The US economy has never – ever – seen Industrial Production drop YoY for seven months in a row without being in a recession. Down 2.0% YoY in March, the weakest since December and down 0.6% MoM (weakest since Feb 2015) the decline in factory output is driven a 1.6% plunge in vehicle production (2.8% collapse in motor vehicles specifcally) in March. This 1.76% drop is the worst for a March since 2008.
  • U.S. Consumer Sentiment Fell for Fourth Straight Month
    Consumer confidence fell for the fourth straight month in April amid growing concerns about weaker economic growth. The University of Michigan preliminary consumer sentiment index for April, released Friday, registered at 89.7, compared with a final March reading of 91.0. April’s reading was the lowest since September 2015. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had expected the April index would rise to 92.0.
  • “It’s Getting Worse” – Economic Outlook Plummets In Gallup Poll, Rising Gas Prices Blamed
    According to the latest Weekly Economic Confidence poll released by Gallup, Americans’ confidence in the US economy is getting worse. The poll asks people to rate the economy as of today, and whether or not the economy as a whole is getting better or worse. It turns out that ordinary people are not as excited about the US economy as those who are cheerleading minimum wage job creation and market levels being close to all time highs, and certainly not as excited as that group of people called each month by either the Conference Board or UMich, the two far more closely tracked confidence indicators. The Economic Confidence Index for the week ending April 10th came in at -14. Down from the prior week, and hitting a low not seen since the first week of November last year.
  • Americans Not Buying what the Fed Is Selling
    Here’s some free advice for the Federal Reserve. It’s OK. You can tell them. They already know. As Peter Schiff pointed out on CNBC yesterday, the Fed doesn’t really want to raise interest rates. We just witnessed what even a small nudge upward did to the stock markets after years of low rates and monetary policy artificially pumped them up. But on the other hand, the Fed doesn’t want to admit the US economy really isn’t in great shape.
  • Baker Hughes US Oil Rig Count Drops 3 More to 351
    Baker Hughes reported the active oil rig count fell by 3 more rigs to 351 for the week ending April 15. The total number of active oil and gas rigs declined by 3 to 440. This is the seventeenth week in a row the combined oil and gas rig count has declined, moving further into record low territory. It is the fourth week in a row for oil-rigs only, pushing the count to the lowest levels since the fourth quarter of 2009. For the week ending April 8 the energy company said 7 combined oil and gas rigs went offline, bringing the total number of oil and gas rigs down to 443. The oil-rigs only count fell by 8 to 354.
  • Nomi Prins Just Issued A Dire Warning About What Is Going To Trigger Total Global Collapse
    Nomi Prins:  “We (already) have inflation.  Will the bond market deflate?  It absolutely will deflate when these policies run out of steam or get taken off the table.  And that is why central banks keep coordinating and are so afraid to go back on what they started in 2008. If any of these policies were to have been working for real economic growth, they wouldn’t need to have gone on for this many years, which means they actually have only existed in order to help inflate assets in the financial system and to create liquidity that would have otherwise not been there for these assets.
  • 10 Years of Fracking: Its Impact on Our Water, Land and Climate
    In a single year, fracking wells across the country released at least 5.3 billion pounds of the potent greenhouse gas methane, as much global warming pollution as 22 coal-fired power plants. The statistic is one of many in a new study by Environment America Research & Policy Center that quantifies the environmental harm caused by more 137,000 fracking wells permitted since 2005.
  • New UN report finds almost no industry profitable if environmental costs were included
    If you haven’t been paying attention, I don’t blame you for at first not believing this. After all, companies go to great lengths to greenwash their image and present themselves as progressive and environmentally responsible, even while they turn your land to deserts and your oceans into dead zones. Unfortunately, as Mark Twain once famously said: “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”
  • FTSE falters on China and UK construction, with housebuilders sliding
    Leading shares are slipping lower after China’s economy saw a slowdown in the first quarter, albeit in line with expectations. But the biggest fallers in the UK index were closer to home. Following Persimmon’s cautious trading update on Thursday, housebuilders are leading the way down, with Berkeley Group 106p lower at £28.70, Taylor Wimpey down 4.2p at 172.8p and Persimmon itself falling 21p to £18.79. The falls come despite UK contruction data showing housebuilding recording quarterly growth of 6.8%, the biggest rise since March 2014. Also heading lower is InterContinental Hotels, down 52p to £28.76 as JP Morgan moved from neutral to underweight on worries about its pipeline of rooms.
  • Three Historical Patterns Point to Passover 2016 As Major Turning Point
    The Jewish feast of Passover is known as a time of major turning points in history. Three historical patterns are now indicating another major turning point is coming during Passover 2016. King Solomon discovered there is an appointed time, a set time for everything and for every event under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1). Nothing just happens randomly. Everything happens at a set time following patterns, seasons of time, which are as predictable as sunrise and sunset.
  • Deutsche Bank Admits It Rigged Gold Prices, Agrees To Expose Other Manipulators
    Well, that didn’t take long. Earlier today when we reported the stunning news that DB has decided to “turn” against the precious metals manipulation cartel by first settling a long-running silver price fixing lawsuit which in addition to “valuable monetary consideration” said it would expose the other banks’ rigging having also “agreed to provide cooperation to plaintiffs, including the production of instant messages, and other electronic communications, as part of the settlement” we said “since this is just one of many lawsuits filed over the past two years in Manhattan federal court in which investors accused banks of conspiring to rig rates or prices in financial and commodities markets, we expect that now that DB has “turned” that much more curious information about precious metals rigging will emerge, and will confirm what the “bugs” had said all along: that the precious metals market has been rigged all along.”
  • Why is this country so poor?
    “What is it about this place that makes it so poor?” It was a simple question posed to me by a friend as we walked the streets of Managua, Nicaragua earlier this week. Nicaragua is a lovely place. But it’s poor. Very poor. It’s the least developed economy in Central America… and that’s saying something. But it’s worth considering: what makes an economy like Nicaragua so poor? And what makes others so wealthy? Having traveled to nearly 120 countries, I’ve seen the full range of rich and poor nations. And I’ll tell you, it has nothing to do with natural resources or anything like that. I often have meetings with senior ministers and government officials around the world who tell me all about the amazing resources they have in their country. “We have so much forestry land,” or, “Our bauxite reserves are among the highest in the world…” Irrelevant. Venezuela has incredible oil reserves. Yet they’ve been living in poverty for years.
  • Deutsche Bank Confirms Silver Market Manipulation In Legal Settlement, Agrees To Expose Other Banks
    Back in July of 2014, we reported that in an attempt to obtain if not compensation, then at least confirmation of bank manipulation in the precious metals industry, a group of silver bullion banks including Deutsche Bank, Bank of Nova Scotia and HSBC (later UBS was also added to the defendants) were accused of manipulating prices in the multi-billion dollar market. The lawsuit, which was originally filed in a New York district court by veteran litigator J. Scott Nicholson, a resident of Washington DC, alleged that the banks, which oversee the century-old silver fix manipulated the physical and COMEX futures market since January 2007. The lawsuit subsequently received class-action status. It was the first case to target the silver fix. Many expected that this case would never go anywhere and that the defendant banks would stonewall indefinitely: after all their legal budgets were far greater than the plaintiffs.
  • Gold resurgence: who’s buying gold and why
    After four years of sharp falls, a sudden revival has been taking place in the gold market. In the first three months of 2016 the price of the yellow metal soared by 20pc – its best quarterly performance since the financial crisis erupted in the final three months of 2008. The gold price, currently around $1,260 an ounce, is well below its record peak of almost $1,900 achieved in July 2011, at the height of the European sovereign debt crisis. For investors who have missed out on the rally so far, the big question is: has gold turned a corner, suggesting that it will continue to rise, or will it crash back down to earth? As gold pays no income, it is difficult to value. Therefore, unlike an individual share or stock market index, it is less clear whether the metal is cheap or expensive at its current price.
  • Hate Taxes? You Certainly Are Not Alone…
    At this time of the year, millions of Americans are rushing to file their taxes at the last minute, and we are once again reminded just how nightmarish our system of taxation has become.  I studied tax law when I was in law school, and it is one of the most mind-numbing areas of study that you could possibly imagine.  At this point, the U.S. tax code is somewhere around 4 million words long, which is more than four times longer than all of William Shakespeare’s works put together.  And even if you could somehow read the entire tax code, it is constantly changing, and so those that prepare taxes for a living are constantly relearning the rules.  It has been said that Americans spend more than 6 billion hours preparing their taxes each year, and Politifact has rated this claim as true.  We have a system that is as ridiculous as it is absurd, and the truth is that we don’t even need it.  In fact, the greatest period of economic growth in all of U.S. history was when there was no income tax at all.  Why anyone would want to perpetuate this tortuous system is beyond me, and yet we keep sending politicians to Washington D.C. that just keep making this system even more complicated and even more burdensome.
  • IMF warns of fresh financial crisis
    The International Monetary Fund has highlighted risks of a new financial crisis, warning that global output could be cut by 4% over the next five years by a repeat of the market mayhem witnessed during the 2008-9 recession. The IMF used its half-yearly global financial stability report to call for urgent action on the problems of banks in the eurozone, a third of which it said faced “significant challenges” to be sustainably profitable. “In the euro area, market pressures also highlighted long-standing legacy issues, indicating that a more complete solution to European banks’ problems cannot be further postponed,” the Fund said. It said there needed to be a comprehensive strategy to deal with €900bn (£715bn) of non-performing loans (NPLs) on the books of eurozone banks, adding that banks also needed to be closed in order to deal with excess capacity.
  • UK government’s fracking definition ‘could allow drilling without safeguards’
    The UK government has been accused of including a large loophole in its legal definition of fracking which could enable companies to bypass safety regulations, according to a leading geologist. In rules that came into force on 6 April, fracking is defined by the amount of high-pressure fluid used to fracture shale rocks and release gas or oil. However, the only well fracked in the UK so far, which caused small earthquakes near Blackpool in 2011, would not qualify as fracking under the definition. Furthermore, according to Prof Stuart Haszeldine at the University of Edinburgh, analysis of more than 17,000 gas wells fracked in the US from 2000-10 shows 43% would not be defined as fracking under UK rules. More than 4,500 US wells were fracked to release oil in that time but 89% would not be covered by the UK definition.
  • 100,000 Italians sign petition for eurozone exit referendum
    Italy’s Five Star Movement (M5S) party has collected more than 100,000 signatures on a petition calling for a law that would allow a referendum on withdrawal from the eurozone. M5S MP Carlo Sibila says he expects a referendum to take place at the start of next year. Though the petition has already surpassed the required amount of signatures needed for the initiative, Sibila said that he hopes it will gather another 50,000 by early May in order to highlight the issue.
  • Austria Just Announced A 54% Haircut Of Senior Creditors In First “Bail In” Under New European Rules
    Just over a year ago, a black swan landed in the middle of Europe, when in what was then dubbed a “Spectacular Development” In Austria, the “bad bank” of failed Hypo Alpe Adria – the Heta Asset Resolution AG – itself went from good to bad, with its creditors forced into an involuntary “bail-in” following the “discovery” of a $8.5 billion capital hole in its balance sheet primarily related to ongoing deterioration in central and eastern European economies. Austria had previously nationalized Heta’s predecessor Hypo Alpe-Adria-Bank International six years ago after it nearly collapsed under the bad loans it ran up when it grew rapidly in the former Yugoslavia. Having burnt through €5.5 euros of taxpayers’ money to prop up Hypo Alpe, Finance Minister Hans Joerg Schelling ended support in March 2015, triggering the FMA’s takeover. This was the first official proposed “Bail-In” of creditors, one that took place before similar ad hoc balance sheet restructuring would take place in Greece and Portugal in the coming months. Or rather, it wasn’t a fully executed “Bail-In” for the reason that creditors fought it tooth and nail.
  • IMF says Britain leaving the EU is a significant risk
    A British vote to leave the EU risks causing severe economic and political damage to Europe that will spill over into an already febrile world economy, the International Monetary Fund has warned. Cutting its forecasts for global growth and for the UK and other advanced economies, the IMF listed a potential Brexit vote in June’s EU referendum as a key risk in its latest World Economic Outlook (WEO). “In the United Kingdom, the planned June referendum on European Union membership has already created uncertainty for investors; a ‘Brexit’ could do severe regional and global damage by disrupting established trading relationships,” said Maurice Obstfeld, IMF economic counsellor. The Washington-based Fund said economic growth was also threatened by a host of other factors, including “the tragedy of large-scale refugee inflows” to Europe, a potential reappearance of financial market turmoil, China’s difficult economic rebalancing and growing income inequality.
  • As Minimum Wages Go Up, Amazon.com Looks Like the Big Winner
    Minimum wages are going up around the country. As the Fight for $15 spreads, several major retailers have lifted their base pay, and states and cities have enacted gradual wage hikes to $15/hour. California, the state that more than one out of 10 Americans calls home, passed a bill last week enacting incremental hikes in the minimum wage from $10/hour today to $15/hour in 2022, or a compound annual rate of nearly 9%, for businesses with at least 25 employees. Next year, the wage will rise to $10.50/hour. New York followed suit with a similar law, mandating an increase to $15/hour by 2019 in New York City and 2022 in the suburbs, and to $12.50 by 2021 in upstate New York. Several other cites, including Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Portland, Ore., and Washington, D.C., have also passed aggressive minimum wage hikes recently.
  • There’s No Free Lunch With The Minimum Wage
    This is not just the normal economic observation that there’s no such thing as a free lunch: there’s always costs to something, not just benefits. Rather this is the quite literal observation that cranking up the minimum wage leads to a disappearance of the free lunch itself. Over in my native UK George Osborne has imposed a remarkably silly “national living wage” which is intended to rise to 60% of median earnings soon enough. That’s too high for a minimum wage (the general consensus, even among those who support a higher minimum wage, is that 50% is as high as it is reasonable to go) but that’s what he’s decided to do. And we can generally predict what the effects will be. There will be a rise in unemployment compared to what would have happened without that rise, there will be price rises negating much of the effect of higher incomes and employers will also respond by trying to cut whatever parts of the non-wage employment bill they can.
  • China Goes Prospecting for World’s Gold Mines
    Chinese gold miners are aggressively scouting for overseas acquisitions, encouraged by historically low gold prices that could help them scoop up assets cheaply. Though gold prices have risen more than 16% since hitting a six-year low in December, the metal has still been trading close to levels last seen in 2010, in a range of roughly $1,220 to $1,240 a troy ounce. China is the world’s largest gold consumer and producer, but only a few Chinese companies, such as Zijin Mining Group Co., have ventured abroad to buy mines, unlike their counterparts in industrial metals.
  • Trans-Atlantic & Trans-Pacific “Partnerships” Complete Corporate World Takeover — Paul Craig Roberts
    As I have emphasized since these “partnerships” were first announced, their purpose is to give corporations immunity from the laws in the countries in which they do business. The principle mechanism of this immunity is the granting of the right to corporations to sue governments and agencies of governments that have laws or regulations that impinge on corporate profits. For example, France’s prohibitions of GMO foods are, under the “partnerships,” “restraints on trade that impinge on corporate profits. The “partnerships” set up “tribunals” staffed by corporations that are outside the court systems of the sovereign governments. It is in these corporate tribunals that the lawsuits take place. In other words the corporations are judge, jury, and prosecutor. They can’t lose. The “partnerships” set up secret unaccountable governments that are higher and have power over the elected governments.
  • Over 11,000 Coal Miners Lost Their Jobs In The Last Year
    Coal mines shed more than 11,000 jobs in the last year, according to recently released employment data, as the industry continues to contract under onerous federal regulations and faltering demand. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports there were around 56,700 coal miners employed across the U.S. as of March 2016, which is down about 11,200 jobs from March 2015 when some 67,900 coal miners had jobs.
  • Comparing the 1930s and Today
    You’ve heard the axiom “History repeats itself.” It does, but never in exactly the same way. To apply the lessons of the past, we must understand the differences of the present. During the American Revolution, the British came prepared to fight a successful war—but against a European army. Their formations, which gave them devastating firepower, and their red coats, which emphasized their numbers, proved the exact opposite of the tactics needed to fight a guerrilla war. Before World War I, generals still saw the cavalry as the flower of their armies. Of course, the horse soldiers proved worse than useless in the trenches. Before World War II, in anticipation of a German attack, the French built the “impenetrable” Maginot Line. History repeated itself and the attack came, but not in the way they expected. Their preparations were useless because the Germans didn’t attempt to penetrate it; they simply went around it, and France was defeated.
  • LIST: Who are the World’s Top 10 Oil Producers?
    Countries are producing oil at record levels in an attempt to maintain or grow their market share. Here is a list of the world’s top 10 oil producers. Source: US Energy Information Administration; Data includes crude oil, lease condensate, natural gas plant liquids, and refinery processing gain.
  • Dead Canaries And Disobedient Falcons: Bad Month Coming, Especially For Banks
    Corporate profitability is one of the canaries in today’s financial coal mine. If companies are making more money each year they tend to hire more people, pay more taxes and generally make life easier for everyone else. But when earnings decline, everything from government budgeting to personal financial planning gets much harder. Viewed through this lens, 2015 was a “coming to grips” year in which the financial markets vacillated over the meaning of falling corporate profits: Are they an aberration or the new normal?
  • Skunk At A Garden Party—-Kuroda’s Money Printing Failure In Japan Is Bringing Bad News To The G-20
    The world’s central bankers, already hitting limits of their effectiveness on growth and inflation, are now contending with another risk: that additional stimulus could produce lackluster results and undercut investor confidence. The Bank of Japan’s decision in January to take interest rates negative has sent bond yields tumbling, while doing little to curb a surging yen that’s squeezing the world’s third-biggest economy just when it needs a weaker currency. That’s put even more monetary and fiscal stimulus on the agenda at a time when Japanese households and companies are increasingly doubting the program. “Japan is bringing bad news to the world,” said Hiromichi Shirakawa, chief Japan economist at Credit Suisse Group AG and a former BOJ official. “It’s demonstrating that massive monetary easing doesn’t work for everyone. Any additional stimulus may invite criticism from other central banks.” The decline in credibility in Japan is a warning sign for central bankers and finance ministers who gather this week in Washington for spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, as well as a Group of 20 session.
  • Warren Buffett’s right-hand man gave a dark warning about American finance
    Warren Buffett’s right-hand man, Charlie Munger, is worried about American finance. According to the Berkshire Hathaway vice chairman, we have “a vast gambling culture, and people have made it respectable.” Basically, the stock market is a casino, and too many people want to get rich quickly. He said: There’s way, way too much of that in America. And too much of the new wealth has gone to people who either own a casino or are playing in a casino. And I don’t think the exaltation of that group has been good for life generally, and I am to some extent a member of that group.
  • Why You Should Own Gold Before the Government Starts Handing Out Free Cash
    Ivy League economists agree… The economy is struggling because central banks haven’t printed enough money. If you’ve been reading the Dispatch, you know this statement is absurd. After all, central banks have printed trillions of currency units since the 2008 financial crisis. The U.S. Federal Reserve has printed $3.5 trillion by itself. On top of that, many world central banks have dropped interest rates to zero, making it extremely cheap and easy to borrow money. According to mainstream economists, these easy-money policies were supposed to jumpstart the global economy. But this plan has been a miserable failure. The U.S., Europe, and Japan are all growing at the slowest pace since World War II. China, the second-biggest economy after the U.S., is growing at its slowest pace since 1990.
  • ‘In five years the vast majority of the cash will be out of the system’
    Mark Barnett, the boss of MasterCard in the UK and Ireland, believes that in five years time cash will be practically extinct in Britain and Ireland — and in 30 years it will seem as old fashioned as the horse and cart. Barnett told Business Insider at the Money2020 conference in Copenhagen last week: “By the time we get to another generation, 30 years down the track, will there be any cash? I very much doubt it. The idea of carrying coins — 2p, 1p, 50p all cluttering up your pocket — it will be an anachronism. It will seem as antediluvian as carrying a pouch full of gold.”
  • Pastor Lindsey Williams – The Energy Non-Crisis…
    Pastor Lindsey Williams – The Energy Non-Crisis… Learn what happened when Chaplain Williams met the Elite of the world… Watch the FULL Presentation NOW! – FREE!
  • Quietly the advantage in gold goes to private investors
    I can remember only one other time when market factors lined up as favorably for gold as they do now and that was in the spring of 2008. There are a great many similarities to gold market dynamics between now and then, but there are also great differences. One of those differences is the huge influx of interest from institutional investors led by hedge funds and big banks. In 2008, institutional interest was light. Now HSBC, JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, ABN Amro, UBS and Deutsche Bank, PIMCO and Black Rock head a growing list of investment houses that view gold favorably. In what could turn out to be the first among many such announcements, Munich Re, the giant German reinsurer, said it was adding gold to its reserves in the face of negative interest rates. Chief Executive Nikolaus von Bomhard told a news conference, “We are just trying it out, but you can see how serious the situation is.”
  • Gold – The Best Defense Strategy
    The War on Cash is on! If you are used to making visits to your bank to make your credit card payments, you may find this no longer an option in the future. Some banks are no longer accepting (or limiting their acceptance) of cash deposits. The war on cash forges on. Paper money, which is indeed more or less worthless, is slowly being taken out of circulation and being replaced by digital currency.
  • Cash Banned, Freedom Gone
    Some politicians want to ban cash, arguing that cash is helping criminals. The first steps in that direction are the withdrawal of big denomination notes and the limits imposed on cash payments. Proponents of a ban on cash claim that this will help fight criminal transactions — involved in money laundering, terrorism, and tax evasion. These promises of salvation are used to get the general public to agree to a society without cash. But there is no convincing proof for the claim that the world without cash will be a better one. Even if undesirable behavior is indeed financed by cash, you still need to answer the question: will the undesirable behavior disappear without cash? Or will those who commit the undesirable acts take to new ways and means to reach their goal?
  • Economist Warns: “A Tidal Wave Is Coming… Recession Indicator Has Turned Red”
    With corporate earnings for the first quarter of 2016 set to be the worst since the Great Recession, Societe Generale economist Albert Edwards is warning that the United States is about to be hit with a tidal wave. A tidal wave is coming to the US economy, according to Albert Edwards, and when it crashes it’s going to throw the economy into recession. …the profit recession facing American corporations is going to lead to a collapse in corporate credit. “Despite risk assets enjoying a few weeks in the sun our fail-safe recession indicator has stopped flashing amber and turned to red” … He continued: Whole economy profits never normally fall this deeply without a recession unfolding. And with the US corporate sector up to its eyes in debt, the one asset class to be avoided — even more so than the ridiculously overvalued equity market — is US corporate debt. The economy will surely be swept away by a tidal wave of corporate default.

Precious Metals Are The Only Lifeboat! I have persistently WARNED you what was happening in the gold market and why you needed to convert your paper assets to physical gold and silver by the middle of September 2015. You need to hedge against the financial instability with physical gold and silver. Call the experts to help you convert your IRA or 401k into Gold, Silver and Other Precious Metals. Call Regal Assets NOW before it’s too late! Call Toll-Free 1-888-748-6766.