Thursday, April 25, 2019

Keep Your Eye on China

by Jim Rickards, Daily Reckoning:

The trade war is beginning to take its toll on China as the Chinese economy is losing momentum. Beijing has pledged to increase small-business lending and increase infrastructure investment to help offset the impact.

Ting Lu, chief China economist at Nomura Intl. in Hong Kong, said, for example, “The Chinese economy will get worse before getting better. It takes several months to turn around. Beijing will step up credit easing and fiscal measures to deliver a recovery and prevent financial troubles such as a rise of bond defaults.”

But with a debt-to-GDP ratio of about 250%, China is already well into the danger zone. How much more debt-financed stimulus can it take?

What Bugging Out from Venezuela Is Really Like

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by J.G. Martinez D., The Organic Prepper:

Editor’s Note: So often in the prepping community, you see people giving flippant advice like, “just move” or “don’t be frivolous and you can afford it.” But, as you’ll see in this article, picking up and leaving your lifelong home after a lengthy financial collapse that has drained all your resources isn’t that simple. While bugging out might seem to be the obvious answer, Venezuelans love their home just as much as we love our country and unless a family left before things got bad, they may no longer have the resources to do so. Most of us have never thought about what it would be like to leave your home forever, with no money and only the things you can carry. In this article, Jose shares what that is really like for millions of Venezuelan migrants.~ Daisy

Don’t Be Surprised If Gold & Silver Pull Out In Front Of The Cartel This Week

from SilverDoctors:

SD Outlook: Gold & silver look strong coming out of the latest turn. Here’s why…

On the surface, things look calm.

Not much going on through hump day:

We have a Kashkari speech on Tuesday and a plethora of housing data.

Thursday and Friday are equally full of meh:

We don’t have any Fed speakers to worry about, unless of course, they are trotted out on CNBC. If that is the case, there is something wrong in the markets that the Fed will try to fix with some good old fashioned jaw-boning.

We do get more economic data releases in the latter half of the week, but we can rest assured knowing that nearly every single piece of statistical economic data is crafted in a manner to fit whatever narrative that the bankers and the government want to portend.

What we have this week is crunch time for government. And we get a double-shot.

Whereas economic data points and Fed Heads are one thing, the government often does make policy errors, and a policy error could move the markets one way or another.

Specifically this week, there are two major issues big gov will be tackling.

First, there are the tax cuts, which nearly everybody accepts as a foregone conclusion. If for whatever reason the tax cuts are not passed, there would most likely be violent reactions in all markets because at this point everything is priced in on a “yes” vote. A “no” vote is not priced in.

The second thing which culminates on a hard date (Friday) is the debt ceiling debacle.

In the current government’s quest to punish future generations with cumbersome debt by always kicking the can, by now we are all trained to assume that disaster in the form of a government shutdown will be averted again. One day disaster won’t be averted, but with the stock market euphoria and the promise of extra fiat in our pockets come next year, I would be thinking the government will effectively kick the can.

So while on the surface everything is calm, collected, and optimistic, under the surface we see signs that say “not so fast”.

Read More @ SilverDoctors.com

Spotlight Boeing: Russia Threatens to Cut Off Titanium

by Mish Shedlock, The Maven:

You can only push countries so far before they decide to push back. Russia may do just that.

Please consider Russia Threatens to Cut Off Crucial Titanium Exports to Boeing.

Russian lawmakers have submitted a wide-ranging bill that could freeze crucial exports to the United States.

The bill, which was drafted by leading lawmakers at the State Duma in response to the new round of U.S. sanctions announced last week, proposes a wide range of restrictions for U.S. businesses in Russia and for cooperation with the U.S. Among them is a proposal to ban or restrict titanium exports that are crucial for U.S. aircraft maker Boeing.

THE UNBEARABLE SLOWNESS OF FOURTH TURNINGS

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by Jim Quinn, The Burning Platform:

“The next Fourth Turning is due to begin shortly after the new millennium, midway through the Oh-Oh decade. Around the year 2005, a sudden spark will catalyze a Crisis mood. Remnants of the old social order will disintegrate. Political and economic trust will implode. Real hardship will beset the land, with severe distress that could involve questions of class, race, nation and empire. The very survival of the nation will feel at stake. Sometime before the year 2025, America will pass through a great gate in history, commensurate with the American Revolution, Civil War, and twin emergencies of the Great Depression and World War II.” – Strauss & Howe The Fourth Turning 

This Fourth Turning was ignited suddenly in September 2008 as the housing bubble, created by the Federal Reserve and their criminal puppeteer owners on Wall Street, collapsed, revealing the greatest control fraud in world history. A crisis mood was catalyzed as the stock market dropped 50{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528}, unemployment surged to highs not seen since 1981, foreclosures exploded, and captured politicians bailed out the criminal bankers with the tax dollars of the victims.

The mood of the country darkened immediately as average Americans flooded their congressmen’s websites and phone lines with a demand not to bailout the felonious Wall Street banks with $700 billion of TARP. But they ignored their supposed constituents and revealed who they are truly beholden to.

Trust in the political and financial system disintegrated and has further deteriorated as the ruling elite continue to loot and pillage as if the 2008/2009 global financial meltdown never happened. From the perspective of the archaic social order there is no longer a crisis. The recovery narrative, flogged ceaselessly by the crooked establishment and their propaganda fake news corporate media mouthpieces, has convinced millions of willfully ignorant Americans progress is occurring.

Could they be right? Is the Crisis over? Has this Fourth Turning been managed to a successful conclusion by central bankers issuing tens of trillions in debt, politicians spending tens of trillions supplied by taxpayers, bankers rigging financial markets, and consumers leveraging up to maintain their lifestyles? Has the exiting corrupt social order successfully retained their power, control and influence over the masses by manipulating the levers of society and fending off their demise? Have they already won?

This Fourth Turning just passed its ninth anniversary. The Civil War Fourth Turning lasted only five years, but that was because it was accelerated, with an enormous amount of bloodshed crammed into a short time frame. The American Revolution Crisis lasted twenty one years. The Great Depression/World War II Crisis lasted seventeen years. All three prior American Fourth Turnings ended with an all-out decisive war, with clear victors and vanquished.

Based on historical precedent, this Fourth Turning shouldn’t reach its resolution until the mid-2020’s, with a major global conflict on the near term horizon. Those who understand that something wicked this way comes are frustrated by the apparent slowness of the progression. They shouldn’t be too anxious for an acceleration.

Since Strauss & Howe didn’t formulate their generational theory until 1997, this is the first Fourth Turning in which some people understand the dynamics driving the Crisis. Does knowledge about a cycle change the underlying forces propelling history? Has the establishment oligarchy co-opted the crisis mood of the country to avoid its own demise? Or, is this Fourth Turning just proceeding according to the standard morphology along its two decade long test of survival?

Read More @ TheBurningPlatform.com

The Economy Is Collapsing Under The Unbearable Weight Of Debt

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by Dave Kranzler, Investment Research Dynamics:

“Those who see no Lehman-like episode on the horizon did not see the last one.” – highly regarded writer, George Will, in a National Review article titled, “America Is Overdue For Another Economic Disaster”

Lost in the largely meaningless political Kabuki theatre being staged on Capitol Hill is the fact that the economy is deteriorating. Real average weekly earnings in July declined for production and non-supervisory workers. It was down 0.01% from June to July and down 0.22% from July 2017. For all employees, real average hourly earnings declined 0.20% from June to July but was flat year over year.

The Last Great Silver Buy – Ted Butler

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by Ted Butler, SilverSeek:

In the annals of silver in the modern age, there have been two well-known instances of very large investor accumulations of the metal. First came the purchase by the Hunt Brothers and their associates in early 1980, followed by the purchase by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, 17 years later. The Hunts were said to control around 100 million ounces of actual metal (plus another 100 million ounces in long paper futures contracts), while Berkshire held as many as 129 million ounces.

Now there is compelling evidence of a third great investment accumulation of physical silver by none other than JPMorgan, one of the most powerful and connected banks in the world. This accumulation can be dated from the price peak of April 2011, after silver began what is now a near seven-year price decline. From zero in April 2011, the amount of silver in the JPMorgan COMEX warehouse has increased to 120 million ounces. Just about every ounce moved into the JPMorgan COMEX warehouse over the past 7 years has come from futures deliveries stopped (taken) by JPM in its own name. JPMorgan took delivery of 14 million ounces in December and so far, 13 million ounces have remained in the warehouses from which the metal was delivered. So this means that JPMorgan now holds more than 133 million ounces of silver in COMEX warehouses, or more than was held by the Hunt Bros or by Berkshire Hathaway at their peaks. There was a lot more silver in the world in 1980 and 1998 than there is today, meaning that JPMorgan’s accumulation is much more of an accomplishment than previous silver acquisitions.

JPMorgan’s COMEX warehouse silver holdings are only the tip of the iceberg. Beneath the surface, the true extent of JPMorgan’s physical silver accumulation is nothing short of mind-boggling. All told, including the verifiable 133 million ounces held in its own and other COMEX warehouses, JPMorgan holds at least 675 million ounces of actual silver. Simply put, JPMorgan has acquired six times as much metal as bought by the Hunts or Berkshire Hathaway. How is it possible that JPMorgan, could acquire such a massive quantity of physical silver, with no general awareness that it was doing so? More importantly, how did they do it while silver prices steadily declined over the entire time of JPM’s accumulation?

Common sense would dictate that such a large acquisition as JPM’s 675 million ounces (nearly 45% of the 1.5 billion ounces of silver bullion in the form of industry standard 1,000 ounces bars in the world), could not be bought by any entity without driving prices sharply higher. So how could JPMorgan do so without it being noticed and without driving prices sharply higher? The answer is that in addition to being the biggest physical silver accumulator in history, JPMorgan has simultaneously been the largest short seller in COMEX silver futures for the entire time since it acquired Bear Stearns in early 2008. JPMorgan has pulled off something that couldn’t possibly be replicated not just in silver but in any other world commodity. Never again will any one entity be able to accumulate 45% of the world’s supply of a commodity. JPMorgan’s accumulation is more bullish for silver than any other single consideration by a factor of 1,000.

How legitimate is it that a large financial entity could sell short massive quantities of paper derivatives contracts which result in lower prices, and then use those lower prices to accumulate silver on the cheap? It couldn’t possibly be legitimate and that makes JPMorgan a market crook and manipulator. It also makes the federal regulator, the CFTC, and the self-regulating CME Group, incompetent, corrupt, or both. This takes a special kind of market manipulator, one most likely operating under some type of agreement with the regulators.

As I have explained in past articles, 150 million ounces of silver was acquired by JPMorgan through buying 100 million Silver Eagles from the U.S. Mint, plus another 50 million Silver Maple Leafs from the Royal Canadian Mint. All these coins were melted into industry standard 1,000 ounce bars since as there’s no way anyone to unload 150 million Silver Eagles and Maple Leafs. In 2013 record sales of these silver coins conflicted strongly with reports from retail dealers of weak demand. By process of elimination, if it wasn’t the guy on the street buying all these coins, it had to be someone big. Based upon a variety of other supporting evidence that JPMorgan was the absolute king of the silver market, the most plausible explanation was that JPMorgan was Mr. Big when it came to buying Eagles and Maple Leafs. JPMorgan’s cessation in buying these coins a year or so ago is the only explanation for why sales then fell off a cliff. JPM controlled the price at which the mints sold and JPMorgan bought. It was a particularly clever and deceitful means by which JPM acquired 150 million ounces of silver at give-away prices.

At the exact time that silver topped out in April of 2011, JPMorgan opened its COMEX silver warehouse and began its epic accumulation of silver. Another almost impossible to explain phenomenon started then and continues to this day – an unusually large and persistent physical movement of silver brought into and taken out from the COMEX silver warehouses. Over the past near 7 years, there has been an average weekly movement of around 4.5 million ounces of physical silver turning over in the COMEX silver warehouses, far higher than ever before. In total, some 1.4 billion ounces of physical silver were moved in and out of the COMEX warehouses. This physical movement of silver in the COMEX warehouses is highly unique to silver, as no other commodity has seen any unusual turnover in exchange-approved warehouse inventories – just COMEX silver. I believe this unusual turnover was created by JPMorgan gobbling up all available silver in industry standard 1,000 ounce bars. JPM has been able to “skim off” 150 to 200 million ounces, which when combined with the 150 million ounces that JPM accumulated in mint-issued coins, brings to 300 to 350 million ounces of the 550 million ounces JPMorgan holds outside its COMEX warehouse holdings.

Read More @ SilverSeek.com

Senator John McCain Wanted to Restore the Glass-Steagall Act: Here’s Why

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by Pam Martens and Russ Martens, Wall St On Parade:

It’s not every day that one sees the names Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren and Republican Senator John McCain as the leading co-sponsors on the same piece of legislation. But that’s exactly what happened on July 11, 2013, two years later on July 7, 2015, and again last year on April 6. Together with Maria Cantwell (D-Washington) and Angus King (I-Maine), the four last year re-introduced the 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act, an updated version of the Banking Act of 1933, which was also known as the Glass-Steagall Act.

Senator McCain passed away on August 25, without seeing the passage of the legislation.

The Dogs of Vengeance

by James Howard Kunstler, Kunstler:

History has a velocity of its own, and its implacable forces will drag the good, the bad, the clueless, the clever, the guilty, the innocent, the avid, and the unwilling to a certain fate. One can easily see a convergence of vectors shoving the nation toward political criticality this autumn.

Mr. Trump is like some unfortunate dumb brute of the ancient Teutonic forests with a bulldog clamped to his nose, the rest of the pack close behind snapping at his hamstrings and soft, swaying underbelly. His desperate bellowing goes unanswered by the indifference of the trees in forest, the cold moon above, and all the other furnishings of his tragic reality.

US Banks Disclose Biggest Unrealized Losses on Security Investments since Q1 2009: FDIC

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by Wolf Richter, Wolf Street:

The price of rising interest rates.

The FDIC just released the aggregated third-quarter performance metrics of the 5,477 banks and thrifts it insures. The amount of their combined assets ticked up to $17.7 trillion. These assets – mostly loans but also investments of all kinds – include $3.6 trillion in securities (not including the securities in their trading accounts). And banks got hit by the biggest quarterly losses on those securities since the first quarter of 2009.

Gold backed cryptocurrency ICO begins today as GoldMint model to create new digital gold market

by Kenneth Schortgen, The Daily Economist:

There are many different gold ‘markets’ for savers and investors to participate in, but only a few provide both security or delivery in real physical gold.

In the West the LBMA, Comex, and equity based GLD ETF’s focus on paper ownership of gold, where investors who want to own the precious metal but don’t want to deal with storing it put their trust in brokers and associations that have a long history of fraud and manipulation.  While over in the East, the Shanghai Gold Exchange functions as a true physical gold market.  But unless one chooses to store their gold in an offshore vault, taking physical ownership is once again a difficult proposition.

This leaves savers with a couple of different options to either store or back their wealth in gold while still having the ability to access their money in real time.

One of these platforms comes in the form of a company called Gold Money which allows businesses, savers, and investors to transfer their sovereign currencies into an account that is completely backed by gold, and yet still have access to that money in the form of a debit card or wire transfer mechanisms.

The next one is company called Goldmint, which is a cryptocurrency based platform using the Blockchain.  And on Sept. 20 this enterprise is officially starting its Initial Coin Offering (ICO) where one can purchase tokens that are backed by physical gold.

Today, on the 20th of September, GoldMint is launching its ICO. The GoldMint ICO will mark the birth of a new means of exchange for physical gold, with transactions leveraged over the blockchain based platform. This platform will utilize the private and individual gold trading market and potentially the management of larger physical stocks such as those in central banks. It will also provide an electronic payment solution backed by physical gold and a system for gold-backed peer-to-peer lending. 

GoldMint is celebrating the beginning of its ICO by attending 3 major events on the same day the crowdsale kicks off.  One of these events is BlockchainLive in London– Europe’s leading Blockchain conference bringing together over 75+ global experts in various fields. 

Another one is Moscow’s ICO Event which this time mainly focuses on how legislation will impact the cryptocurrency space. 

Today GoldMint is also present at the Global Blockchain Summit in Hong Kong gathering iconic speakers from various industries to discuss about the real-world applications of blockchain technology, as well as its potential benefits, risks, and regulatory concerns. – Coin Speaker

As the world begins to de-dollarize, and China gets ready to implement a new oil contract convertible to gold, it appears more and more that gold will see a return to the monetary system in some form of fashion.  And when you add in the rise of the blockchain and cryptocurrenies to the mix, melding gold and cryptos is the most economical way to get the best of both worlds and be able to move onto the cutting edge of what is very likely to become the future financial system.

Read More @ DailyEconomist.com