Saturday, July 20, 2019

Risks of Financial Instability “Appear to Be Elevated But Contained”: Australia’s Central Bank on Housing Bust

by Wolf Richter, Wolf Street:

Crackdown on lending shenanigans and bank misconduct plus an onslaught of new condos at worst possible time worry the RBA.

The Reserve Bank of Australia has kept its policy rate at the historic low of 1.5% for the 31st month in a row, to do what it can to keep Australia’s housing bubble inflated. But with home prices spiraling down for other reasons, and with households being among the most indebted in the world, the banks are heavily exposed, and now the RBA is beginning to fret about financial stability.

More Strange And Disturbing Action In The Paper Gold Market

by John Rubino, Dollar Collapse:

For at least the past decade the behavior of the people who trade gold futures contracts – and thereby determine the metal’s price – has been generally predictable: The “commercials” – big banks and companies that buy gold to do things with it – have suckered the speculators – mostly hedge funds who chase trends – into going very long and very short at exactly the wrong time.

Which means the price action in gold six or so months in the future was broadly predictable. When the speculators were way long, it was going down and vice versa.

But this year the action – as portrayed in the commitment of traders report (COT) – has departed from the script. After taking on near-record long positions early in the year, the speculators have barely scaled them back from levels that are extremely bearish for gold. Meanwhile gold, instead of tanking as recent history says it should, has been treading water.
And now both the speculators and the commercials have started ramping up their current bets, with speculators going from very long to even more long and commercials going from very short to even more short.

Here’s the same data in graphical form. Where historically the silver bars on top (speculator longs) and the red bars below (commercial shorts) would be expected to converge at the middle of the chart, they’ve diverged and stayed far apart. So the speculators have not been washed out and instead are becoming even more bullish.

Read More @ DollarCollapse.com

Facebook to Launch a Cryptocurrency & Compete Against Banks?

by Martin Armstrong, Armstrong Economics:

QUESTION: Why is Facebook going to issue a cryptocurrency? Doesn’t that confirm the evolutionary path of technology?

ND

ANSWER: The term “cryptocurrency” is being thrown around very loosely. It is true that there is increasing hype and speculation regarding a theoretical Facebook Coin. However, this is not a “cryptocurrency” it is simply a digital entry and nothing more. The proposed Facebook Coin is the polar opposite of Bitcoin. Facebook is creating a pretend cryptocurrency for WhatsApp. This is not a real cryptocurrency. The cryptocurrency enthusiasts are only looking at the label. The Facebook Coin is nothing like Bitcoin (BTC).

Lead Fraudster Of Fraudulent JP Morgan Says Bitcoin Is A Fraud?

by Jeff Berwick, The Dollar Vigilante:

Bitcoin and virtually all of the cryptocurrencies have had a very sizeable, and much needed and expected pullback this week.

There have been two main focal points for the pullback.

Rumors and speculation of a Chinese government attack against the free market have caused most of the consternation.

But, secondly, and most laughably, were comments from Jamie Demon (they spell it Dimon so as to not be too obvious about his backing), the lead fraudster of the virulently fraudulent company, JP Morgan, who said that bitcoin is a “fraud!”

This, coming from a man whose entire industry, of banking, is based on the fraud of fractional reserve banking which is only made “legal” by the fraud of government which is based solely on extortion, which they call taxation.

And, based on a currency, which is created by the fraudulent Federal Reserve which is a central bank which is a tenet of communism and is an outright ponzi scheme whose sole purpose is to impoverish nearly everyone in society and to enrich the 0.00001{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528}.

So, to have Jamie Demon say that bitcoin, which is just math, is a fraud, comes at the height of incredulity.

Not to mention, this is no different than the CEO of Barnes and Noble calling Amazon.com a fraud for the pure fact that it has technologically innovated Barnes and Noble into the dustbin of history… as bitcoin, or at least cryptocurrencies, as a whole, will soon relegate central banking and fiat currencies.

Just look at the US dollar from the cryptocurrencies point of view and you can see that it is the Federal Reserve Note, not bitcoin, which is the fraud.

If the US dollar were a cryptocurrency it would be the one called the fraud.

The US dollar has/is:

No max cap. In other words, it can be inflated to infinity… as opposed to bitcoin which has a hard limit of 21 million bitcoins that will ever be created.

Pre-mined. One of the death knells of a cryptocurrency is that it is pre-mined. In general, this means that the creators of the currency create the currency and give it to themselves before allowing others to purchase it. This is the height of fraud in the cryptocurrency space but this how all US dollars are created. They are pre-mined by the Federal Reserve before they are allowed to “trickle down” to the rest of us poor slaves.

No transparency. Unlike bitcoin, the US dollar has very little transparency as to where it came from and which potentially criminal organization, like the US federal government, IRS or any of the other three letter agencies it has flowed through.

Not backed by cryptography. While bitcoin and all cryptocurrencies have proof of ownership through very secure cryptography the owner of “dollars” can be anyone who is friends with the Federal Reserve.

Not open source. Unlike bitcoin, which anyone in the world can review their code, the dollar is not open source and therefore all manner of fraud can be perpetrated in the system.

You don’t control your private keys. With bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies you hold complete control of your currency by holding your private keys. With dollars, any criminal government agency or the central bank can take control of your dollars at any time.

Not voluntary. While using and owning bitcoin is completely voluntary, usage and acceptance of US dollars are backed by violence. If you do not accept dollars you can and will be kidnapped and thrown in a cage. Should you try to escape you most likely will be killed.

So, which currency is the “fraud” again?

Or is it more likely that Jamie sees bitcoin as a serious risk to his criminal business model?

After all, JP Morgan filed a patent – which is also a criminal act to use violence against others using your ideas – for a “bitcoin killer” competitor to bitcoin in 2013.

Things aren’t going all that well for the US dollar, after all. Year-to-date, this has been the worst performance for the US dollar from January to September since 1986.

Read More @ TheDollarVigilante.com

Total G-3 Central Bank Control

by Turd Ferguson, TF Metals:

There’s a lot of amazement and wonder at how the “stock market” can be up today with the devastating news out of Texas and the latest North Korean missile launch. Longtime readers of TFMR know exactly how this market levitation is accomplished so this post is designed as a public service in order to better educate and inform everyone else.

Let’s just keep it simple…

In 2017…and, actually, since 2008…the “markets” don’t actually exist. Oh sure, there are trades and prices but in terms of what the markets were 20 years ago?…those days are long gone. Instead, what we have now is total HFT domination. Over 90{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} of all volume on the NYSE and NASDAQ is now done through HFT machines that swap positions back and forth. This is common knowledge and if you and I know this, then you can be assured that The Fed, The ECB and the BoJ (known henceforth as the G-3) know this, too.

To that end, since the G-3 are dedicated to market stability and the wealth effect, these central banks clearly seek to influence the direction of the equity markets by influencing the two key drivers of the HFT machines. And what are these drivers? The currency pair of USDJPY and the volatility index known as the VIX. Simply stated, if your wish is to drive “the stock market” higher, all you need to do is buy the USDJPY while at the same time selling the VIX. It truly is that simple.

To that end, daily observation of trading patterns allows us to observe a clear and obvious, algo-driven program in the all-important USDJPY. Because of the sheer size of the forex market (up to $7T/day), any algorithm put in place to manage this pair could only come from pockets deep enough to make it happen….namely, the G-3.

And what does this computer-based, G-3 buying program look like. Again, in the simplest terms, this program sets up a USDJPY floor at some pre-determined or even random level. Once a bounce is initiated, a buy program then follows after the pair have come back down to a newly-discovered double bottom. For today (Tuesday, the 29th), it looked like this:

Read More @ TFMetals.com

China’s Plan to Tank Their Own Stock Market

by Jim Rickards, Daily Reckoning:

When I say the fix is in for FXI that’s not meant to be mysterious. FXI is the ticker symbol for a U.S. exchange-traded fund (ETF) composed of the largest Chinese stocks.

The phrase “the fix is in” simply refers to government-backed manipulation. When you combine the two into a government plan to tank their own stock market, at least to a point, you’re as close to a sure thing as stock market indexes allow these days. That’s exactly what’s going on in China right now.

A currency devaluation will likely lead to a stock market collapse, but it’s a trade-off China is willing to accept because a cheaper currency will stimulate exports and support jobs.

Mongolia Wants More Gold

by Peter Schiff, Schiff Gold:

Mongolia wants more gold.

Last week, the Bank of Mongolia launched a campaign dubbed the “National Gold to the Fund of Treasuries.” The goal of the five-month campaign is to encourage miners and individuals to sell gold to the central bank, along with commercial banks, in order to increase their gold reserves.

The Bank of Mongolia has been buying gold since the beginning of the year. It purchased over 3.2 tons of the yellow metal in the first four months of 2018, according to Xinhua News. That represents an 8% increase over the same period in 2017.

Catalonia Independence Parties in Lead for December 21 Election

by Mish Shedlock, Mish Talk:

Spain dissolved the Catalan Parliament following its declaration of independence. Separatists have lead latest polls.

The Spanish government dissolved the Catalan parliament and arrested many of its leaders following its declaration of independence. Ousted Catalan president, Carles Puigdemont is in exile in Belgium.

Puigdemont faces trumped up charges of rebellion and sedition. It is impossible for Puigdemont to get a fair trial in Spain, and everyone with any bit of honesty or common sense knows just that.

Meanwhile, Catalans head to the polls in regional snap election on December 21. Will the result be any different this time?

Puigdemont Doubles Down

Bloomberg reports Catalan Leader Doubles Down on Independence Pledge.

Puigdemont, who maintains he’s the legitimate regional president after being sacked by the central government, will lead a new platform under the banner of Together for Catalonia. He said on Saturday a victory at the polls on Dec. 21 would serve to ratify his mandate and send a signal to the European Union, which has repeatedly sided with the government of Mariano Rajoy against unilateral attempts for independence.

“The people of Catalonia have shown the world we have the capacity and the will to become an independent state,” Puigdemont told an audience in Bruges, Belgium, where he’s been staying since declaring independence last month. “On Dec. 21, we must ratify that.”

Polls so far show a split Catalan parliament with no obvious majorities. Pro-independence ERC party is predicted to win, replacing Puigdemont’s PDeCAT as the leading separatist force, while pro-union Ciutadans and the Catalan Socialists also would add seats.

Catalan election polls 2017

The above poll from the Financial Times.

Wikipedia sees things slightly differently

Read More @ MishTalk.com