Thursday, April 25, 2019

China & Buying Gold – Why?

by Martin Armstrong, Armstrong Economics:

QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; I believe you said at the WEC in 2017 that central banks will diversify and increase their gold reserves going into the currency crisis coming in 2021. China has continued to increase its gold reserves. You would please update on that development.

Market Report: Comex open interest sharply lower

by Alasdair Macleod, GoldMoney:

Gold and silver are marginally lower on the week in early morning trade in London, with gold at $1223 and silver at $14.26. On Tuesday and Wednesday morning, prices dipped lower, but recovered later on Wednesday. An option expiry on Comex appeared responsible for this action, with bullion bank traders ensuring as many December calls as possible expired worthless.

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts

1

from Jesse’s Café Américain:
“To escape the pain caused by regret for the past or fear about the future, this is the rule to follow: leave the past to the infinite mercy of God, the future to His good Providence, and give the present wholly to His love by being faithful to His grace.”

Jean-Pierre de Caussade, Abandonment to Divine Providence

“Man has places in his heart which do not yet exist, and into them enters suffering, in order that they may have life.”

OUR USUAL AND CUSTOMARY RAID ON GOLD/SILVER ON THE JOBS REPORT/GOLD DOWN $5.10 TO $1295.70

by Harvey Organ, Harvey Organ Blog:

SILVER DOWN 3 CENTS TO $16.43/ANOTHER FICTITIOUS JOBS REPORT : OF THE SUPPOSED 223,000 JOB GAINS, ALMOST 100% COMES FROM THE B/D PLUG AT 215,000 /ITALY APPROVES THEIR NEW FINANCE MINISTER AND HE IS MORE EUROSKEPTIC THAT THE PREVIOUS ONE/SPANISH PARLIAMENT IMPEACHES RAJOY AND WE NOW HAVE A NEW SOCIALIST GOVERNMENT IN SPAIN/DEUTSCHE BANK DOWNGRADED BY S AND P AND IN TROUBLE/BRAZIL’S TROUBLES GOES FROM BAD TO WORSE AS PETROBRAS’ CEO QUITS SUDDENLY/THE COUNTRY IS STILL UNDERGOING A TRUCKING STRIKE AS THE ENTIRE COUNTRY IS PARALYZED: ITS GDP HAS FALLEN BY 38%/ ONE SWAMP STORY FOR YOU TONIGHT

Negative interest rates have come to America

0

by Simon Black, Sovereign Man:

One of the truly mind-boggling absurdities in modern finance has been the creation of ‘negative interest rates’ around the world.

Negative interest rates are particularly prominent in Europe.

Starting back in 2014, the European Central Bank (ECB) slashed its main interest rate to below zero.

One bizarre effect of this policy is that some banks have passed on these negative interest rates to their retail depositors.

This trend has persisted across Europe, Japan, and many other parts of the world.

Yet at least Americans were able to breathe a sigh of relief that negative interest rates hadn’t crossed the Atlantic.

Well, that’s not entirely true.

Recently I was reading through Bank of America’s most recent annual report; it’s filled with some shocking facts about the -real- level of wealth in the Land of the Free… which I’ll tell you more about next week.

But here’s one of the things that caught my eye: Bank of America has $592.4 billion in deposits from retail customers, i.e. regular folks who bank at BOA.

And according to its annual report, BOA paid its retail depositors an average interest rate of 0.04{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} last year.

Seriously. That’s a tiny, laughable amount of interest. But hey, at least it’s positive.

That 0.04{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} average rate means the bank paid its retail depositors a total of $236 million in interest.

Yet at the same time, Bank of America charged those very same retail depositors $4.1 BILLION in fees.

So in total, small depositors forked over a net sum of $3.8+ billion to Bank of America last year for the privilege of holding their money at the bank.

Based on the bank’s total consumer deposits of $592.4 billion, it’s as if the bank had charged its customers a negative interest rate of 0.64{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528}.

What’s the point?

It’s one thing to pay fees to a bank that will safeguard your capital and act in the most conservative way possible.

People pay fees to storage companies to safeguard their wine collections, baseball card collections, all sorts of stuff.

We even pay fees for safety deposit boxes to store important documents.

So in principle there’s nothing wrong with paying a bank a reasonable fee to safeguard your money.

But that’s not what banks do.

They use our savings to speculate on whatever the latest investment fad of the day happens to be… whether it’s sub-prime auto loans, collateralized debt obligations, or some exotic derivative that no one understands.

Your savings are not sitting in a vault being guarded by burley men with shotguns.

To be frank, we have no idea what they’re doing with our money.

And it hardly seems worth paying the bank to let them gamble with your hard-earned savings.

We’re talking about an industry, after all, where hardly a month goes by without some major scandal.

They’ve been caught red-handed opening phony accounts, manipulating interest rates, fixing exchange rates, front-running their customers, etc.

Earlier this week, in fact, the CEO of Wells Fargo announced that more bad news of a major scandal would soon hit the news headlines.

It never stops.

Why does anyone continue to have confidence in these people… AND pay them… when there’s absolutely zero doubt that they cannot be trusted?

There are MUCH easier options. For one, consider holding at least a portion of your savings in cash. And I mean physical cash.

Buy a safe (they’re cheap) and become your own banker. Eliminate the corrupt middleman who stands between you and your money.

Worst case, you save money. No more fees. No more being treated like a criminal terrorist.

And what are you missing out on? 0.04{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} interest. Not much of an argument there.

Read More @ SovereignMan.com

Central Banks Buying Most Gold Since 1971?!

0

from The Currency Nomad:

Over the last several years, big institutions have been acquiring gold at a feverish pace. Countries such as Russia and China accumulate massive amounts of the yellow metal each month. According to the World Gold Council, central banks added 651.5 tons of gold in 2018, an increase of 75% year-over-year while countries such as Hungary, Kazakhstan, and India increased their holdings as well. Global gold demand rose 4% year-over-year to 4,345 tons, according to the World Gold Council. Additionally, jewelry demand for gold remained level year-over-year at 2,200 tons. Demand for gold bars and coins expanded 4% to 1,090 tons last year.

Ground Zero of the Next Big Commodity Boom

0

by Justin Splitter, International Man:

It was the strangest raffle I’ve ever seen.

Sitting on the table was a giant jar of marijuana.

You could pick up the jar. You could inspect it from any angle. You could even smell what was inside.

You then wrote how much marijuana you thought was in it. The person with the closest guess would receive the entire jar.

It was completely absurd. I’ve never seen anything like it. But that was the scene at the Cannabis Life Conference in Vancouver recently.

You might be wondering what I’m doing in Canada…

After all, it’s a long way from Casey Research’s company headquarters in South Florida.

In short, I recently did something I’ve been waiting years to do.

I sold all my belongings…packed up a couple suitcases…and hit the road.

That’s right. I left Florida to do a worldwide “boots on the ground” tour.

I guess you could say I was inspired by Doug Casey. You see, Doug’s the original International Man. He’s been to more than 145 countries. And he’s called more than a dozen “home.”

Doug’s travels have helped him better understand the world. They’ve also led him to opportunities that he never would have known about had he stayed put like most people.

Now, I’m doing the same. I’m scouring the globe for the best investing opportunities…and bringing readers what I find.

Vancouver was the first stop on my tour…

 

I came here to get an up-close and personal look at Canada’s booming marijuana industry.

You see, the legal marijuana market in Canada is being born before our eyes. We have the rare chance to get in on the ground floor of what should be a marijuana bull market for the ages.

That’s why I went to the Cannabis Life Conference. I had to see how the industry was developing from the inside. And that raffle told me everything I needed to know…

When I got to the booth, about 15 people had entered the contest…

Guesses ranged from 80 to 130 grams.

I figured it was probably somewhere in between. So, I wrote down 111 grams.

Just so you know, I didn’t win. I also don’t know how much was in the jar. They didn’t announce the winner that day.

But here’s what I do know…

If I won that contest, they would have given me the jar. And I’m not a medical marijuana patient…or even a Canadian resident.

And that’s not even the craziest part.

The company would have shipped the marijuana directly to my doorstep…

They wouldn’t use their own driver or even a private company. They would have sent the marijuana through Canada Post, Canada’s version of the U.S. Postal Service.

If this sounds illegal, that’s because it is.

You see, recreational marijuana isn’t legal in Canada yet. That won’t happen until next July.

And yet, this company’s whole business is sending marijuana through the mail.

They’re an online marijuana store. If you were in Canada, you could order high-grade marijuana directly off their website. The marijuana would show up at your doorstep a few days later.

You don’t need to prove that you’re a medical marijuana patient, either. You just need to be at least 21 years of age.

Again, this is totally illegal.

And yet, the company’s been at this for the past four years…

It’s sent out more than 13,000 packages.

According to the sales manager I spoke with, none of those packages have been intercepted. The government leaves them alone.

Read More @ InternationalMan.com

 

Market Report: Gold Breaks Oversold Records

by Alasdair Macleod, GoldMoney:

At last, a short-term bottom for gold and silver seems to be forming. This week saw a sharp bounce from record oversold levels, followed by a mid-week pause.

In early European trade this morning (Friday), gold was up a net $4 from last Friday’s close, at $1190, but on Thursday last week it sold down to $1160. So, while there is little change on a Friday to Friday basis, it has actually rallied $30 from the low point. Silver has underperformed, being down a net 18c at $14.62 this morning, having seen its recent low at $14.34.

Housing Slump Accelerates

by Mish Shedlock, The Maven:

Starts and permits both came in well below consensus estimates, with revisions negative.

Lower mortgage rates have not helped new home construction. Both starts and permits are not only well below the Econoday consensus range, but also lower than the lowest estimates.