Wednesday, April 24, 2019

THE U.S. PETRO DOLLAR BREAKDOWN CONTINUES: Big Moves In Gold & Silver Ahead

by Steve St. Angleo, SRSrocco:

The four-decade long monopoly of the U.S. Petro-Dollar as the world’s reserve currency is coming to an end.  Unfortunately, most Americans have no clue that when the Dollar loses its reserve currency status, life will get a lot tougher living in the U.S. of A.  Let’s say, Americans will finally receive “Precious metals religion.”

The U.S. Dollar Index fell considerably yesterday and is now down below a key support level.  In early morning trading yesterday, the U.S. Dollar Index fell to 91.46, down 73 basis points:

According to technical analyst, Clive Maund, in his recent article, DOLLAR update as LOSS OF RESERVE CURRENCY STATUS LOOMS..., he stated the following:

The dollar is on course to lose its reserve currency status. This is not something that will happen overnight, it will be a process, but at some point there is likely to be a “sea change” in perception, as the world grasps that this is what is happening, which will trigger a cascade of selling leading to its collapse, whereupon gold and silver will rocket higher.

In that article, Clive posted the following chart on the U.S. Dollar Index (USD index) and its key support level:

As we can see, traders are looking closely to the Key support area at 92.5 for the USD index.  With the USD index now below that key support area, it could spell real trouble for the Dollar if it closes below that level at the end of the week.  After the markets opened today, the Dollar fell to a low of 91.08.  So, it looks like the Dollar will close this week well below the key support area.

Now, part of the reason for the selloff in the Dollar may have been due to the disaster that took place in the 10-year U.S. Treasury Repo market today.  According to Zerohedge’s article “We’ve Never Seen Anything Like This”: Repo Market Snaps As 10Y Suffers “Epic Fail”:

 Commenting on this dramatic move in 10Y repo rates, Stone McCarthy’s Alan Chernoff, in a note titled “Epic Fail”, writes that “the 10-year note has been below the fails rate and shows no signs of moving! It opened at -350 basis points, and though pressure has eased off of it slightly, it is STILL below the fails rate at -300 basis points.”
Commenting on this dramatic move in 10Y repo rates, Stone McCarthy’s Alan Chernoff, in a note titled “Epic Fail”, writes that “the 10-year note has been below the fails rate and shows no signs of moving! It opened at -350 basis points, and though pressure has eased off of it slightly, it is STILL below the fails rate at -300 basis points.”

The pressure on the U.S. Treasury 10-year repo market is likely a reaction to what came out of the annual BRICS summit in China yesterday,  According to the article, Escobar Exposes Real BRICS Bombshell: Putin’s “Fair Multipolar World” Where Oil Trade Bypasses The Dollar:

“To overcome the excessive domination of the limited number of reserve currencies” is the politest way of stating what the BRICS have been discussing for years now; how to bypass the US dollar, as well as the petrodollar.

Beijing is ready to step up the game. Soon China will launch a crude oil futures contract priced in yuan and convertible into gold.

This means that Russia – as well as Iran, the other key node of Eurasia integration – may bypass US sanctions by trading energy in their own currencies, or in yuan.

This announcement by Putin that oil trade should by-pass the Dollar came a few days after China announced that they plan to start trading oil on their Shanghai Exchange in Yuan, which will be backed by gold.  While we have heard for years that China was going to back their currency or trade with gold, we now see actual plans to start implementing it sometime this year.

By China backing its new oil trading benchmark in Yuan with gold, it provides countries with a great deal of confidence in trading oil in another fiat currency besides the U.S. Dollar.  Thus, countries that acquire a lot of Chinese Yuan by trading oil don’t have to worry about devaluation as they can convert Yuan into gold.

This Is Bad News For the Saudi-Petro Dollar System

The Petro-Dollar system that has been the foundation of world oil trade for the past four decades is now about to become obsolete.  Even though many countries will continue trading oil in Dollars in the future, a larger percentage will likely move into trading oil in Chinese Yuan as it provides a “gold-backed protection” against fiat currency devaluation.

Not only is the Petro-Dollar under severe pressure, so is Middle East’s largest oil exporter that was the foundation of this monetary system back in the early 1970’s.  Ever since the price of oil peaked in 2014 and has fallen by more than half to $49 currently, this has put an enormous strain on Saudi Arabia’s financial bottom line.  In the past three years, Saudi Arabia sold over $250 billion of its foreign exchange reserves, which are mostly in U.S. Treasuries, to fund its national government.

Read More @ SRSrocco.com

Dear President Trump: America is in for a Rude Awakening in January

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by Jim Rickards, Daily Reckoning:

Over the last couple of years I’ve been all over TV… from Fox News to CNBC, CNN and Bloomberg. I’ve been telling our fellow Americans that the financial global elite was planning to issue their own globalist currency called special drawing rights, or SDRs.

And that those elites would use this new currency to replace the U.S. dollar as the global reserve currency.

I’ve even written about this extensively in my best-selling booksThe Road to Ruin and The New Case for Gold.

I’m sure some people in the mainstream media thought I was out of line — but the United Nations and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have both confirmed this plan to replace the U.S. dollar is real. I’ve made this warning many times, but it seems to be falling on deaf ears. That’s why I’m writing directly to you.

Here’s the proof that the U.S. dollar is under attack, right in front of our eyes:

The UN said we need “a new global reserve system… that no longer relies on the United States dollar as the single major reserve currency.”

And the IMF admitted they want to make “the special drawing right (SDR) the principal reserve asset in the [International Monetary System].”

More recently, the IMF advanced their plan by helping private institutions, such as the UK’s Standard Chartered Bank, issue bonds in SDRs.

Although our mainstream media ignored this major event, the UK media reported:

This is all happening. And on January 1st, 2018, this trend to replace the U.S. dollar will accelerate. That’s when the global elite will implement a major change to the plumbing of our financial system.

It’s a brand-new worldwide banking system called Distributed Ledger Technology. And it will have a huge impact on seniors who are now preparing for retirement.

When this system goes live, many nations will be able to dump the U.S. dollar for SDRs.

For now, the U.S. dollar is still the world’s reserve currency. Other nations have to hold and use the U.S. dollar for international trade, instead of their own currencies.

This creates a virtually unlimited demand for U.S. dollars, which allows us to print trillions of dollars each year to pay for wars, debt and anything we want. It keeps our country operating.

Now, we can see that the global elites are working to unseat the U.S. dollar as the global reserve currency.

Here are the three key pieces of information that prove this will happen.

Fact #1 — The IMF issues a globalist currency called special drawing rights, or SDRs.

Fact #2 — The IMF has confirmed they want to replace the U.S. dollar with SDRs.

Fact #3 — The IMF has confirmed Distributed Ledgers can be used for “currency substitution”… and they’ve even set up a special task force to speed up implementation.

The IMF is using this technology to create an SDR payment system, because that’s the currency they issue.

As you know, Christine Lagarde, head of the IMF, is the woman in the middle.

When asked about the task force, she said:

“As I see it, all this amounts to a brave new world for the financial sector.”

Yes, a brave new world where the dollar is no longer the world reserve currency.

Barbara C. Matthews, a former US Treasury Department attaché to the European Union, has reached the same conclusion.

She said the link between the globalists’ currency and Distributed Ledgers “is impossible to avoid.”

And that “the IMF seems to be exploring the possibility of permitting a broader use of [their globalist currency] beyond internal transactions among member central banks.”

Make no mistake, if the IMF is planning to use Distributed Ledgers to replace the U.S. dollar with SDRs. And just to be clear, when SDRs take over, the American people will be left with devalued dollars.

Read More @ DailyReckoning.com

A2A with John Embry

by Turd Furguson, TF Metals:

On Wednesday, the legendary John Embry joined us for a webinar that was full of insight and wisdom. You should be sure to listen to this recorded copy of the audio.

Among the topics discussed over the course of this call:

  • the current level of sentiment in the precious metals space and how this compares to past bull markets
  • the recent visit to Ft Knox by SecTreas Mnuchin
  • possible future confiscation of retirement assets to fund government spending
  • John’s favorite gold and silver miners
  • the idea of an official revaulation of the US’ gold reserves
  • and a whole lot more!

Again, please make the time to give this podcast a thorough listen. You won’t be disappointed!

TF

Click HERE to listen.

Read More @ TFMetals.com

Brick & Mortar Meltdown: Bon-Ton Department Stores Hires Bankruptcy Advisor

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by Wolf Richter, Wolf Street:

Vitamin World plans to file for bankruptcy, Perfumania Holdings just filed. And Toys R Us… All in just two weeks.

Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., which operates about 260 department stores largely in the Northeast and Midwest under the names Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s, and Younkers, has hired PJT Partners, which describes itself as “a leading advisor to companies and creditors in restructurings and bankruptcies around the world.”

Faced with falling sales and customer traffic, the company is trying to refinance debt and prepare for a possible bankruptcy filing, “people familiar with the matter” told the Wall Street Journal.

Bon-Ton had already hired turnaround firm AlixPartners to help improve its operations but added PJT to focus on the financial aspects, “the people” told the Journal.

Bon-Ton’s debt and shares found their way onto WOLF STREET for the first time in November 2015, in Capital Destruction Rages Beneath S&P 500 Tranquility after it reported crummy results, blaming the “unseasonably warm weather” and “continued weakness in overall traffic trends.” That day, its already beaten-down 8{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} notes plummeted well below 40 cents on the dollar, and its shares crashed 39{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} to $1.21.

In January 2016, Bon-Ton’s 8{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} notes reappeared in Defaults and Restructuring Next for Retailers, at which time they traded at 33 cents on the dollar.

Yesterday, the notes traded at 40 cents on the dollar, and the stock was down to $0.69 a share.

In May 2015, shares had traded at around $7. In May 2007, at around the peak of the boom in leveraged buyouts – when there were hopes that a private equity firm would buy out the retailer, as they had done with so many others that have now become part of the brick-and-mortar meltdown â€“ shares had spiked to over $56. But that LBO didn’t happen.

So signs that Bon-Ton was in trouble have been out there for over two years, but in an era of unlimited liquidity and artificially low interest rates, waiting for the inevitable requires patience.

In the last quarter, Bon-Ton reported that sales fell 7{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} to $505 million on dropping customer traffic. Sales have been falling every year for at least three years. Its growing online sales didn’t make up for the plunge in brick-and-mortar sales. Bon-Ton generated a quarterly net loss of $33 million, on top of the $134 million it had lost over the past three years.

It reported total long-term debt of $856 million plus about $300 million in capital leases, financing obligations, and “other long-term liabilities.” Its cash balance was down to just $6.3 million, and on July 29, it still had $171.5 million available to borrow under its credit line with Bank of America – so it’s not going to run out of money tomorrow. But the day is approaching.

In its report on retailers in July, Standard and Poor’s warned about weak recovery for creditors in case of default by a slew of retailers that are headed for a debt restructuring or bankruptcy, including Bon-Ton.

And it pointed out that a number of recently defaulted retailers weren’t able to restructure and continue but instead “have largely closed shop and liquidated their assets.” Among them were The Limited, American Apparel, Wet Seal, and Sports Authority, all heroes of our Brick-and-Mortar Meltdown theme. Alas, “recovery prospects in a liquidation scenario are often dramatically lower than when a company continues to operate,” and this “is especially true in the retail sector because most retailers are asset light – meaning most creditors are highly dependent on profitability and cash flow as a source of repayment.

Indeed, what assets does a retailer have that leases its stores? Inventory to be sold off at liquidation sales. Bon-Ton lists $658 million in merchandise, which is likely worth less when sold at a fire sale. But it has $200 million in accounts payable, $856 million in long-term debt, and $300 million in other obligations, plus things like accrued payroll and benefits. So creditors are going to come up woefully short in a liquidation.

Bon-Ton is just the current episode.

On September 6, Toys R Us was said to have hired a bankruptcy law firm. The company was subject to $6.6 billion LBO in 2005, and by now, the private equity firms involved – Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR), Vornado Realty Trust, and Bain Capital Partners – have stripped out cash and piled on enough debt to topple the company.

On September5, 2017,  Vitamin World, a vitamin and supplement seller with 345 stores, was said to have plans for a bankruptcy filing as early as this month, hoping to get out of exorbitant lease agreements for a number of its stores, people familiar with the plans told Reuters . CEO Michael Madden said that the agreements were negotiated by its previous owners, vitamin maker NBTY Inc. The current owner, private equity firm Centre Lane Partners acquired it last year for about $25 million.

Read More @ WolfStreet.com

Venezuela Is About to Ditch the Dollar in Major Blow to US: Here’s Why It Matters

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by Darius Shahtahmasebi, The Anti Media:

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said Thursday that Venezuela will be looking to “free” itself from the U.S. dollar next week, Reuters reports. According to the outlet, Maduro will look to use the weakest of two official foreign exchange regimes (essentially the way Venezuela will manage its currency in relation to other currencies and the foreign exchange market), along with a basket of currencies.

According to Reuters, Maduro was referring to Venezuela’s current official exchange rate, known as DICOM, in which the dollar can be exchanged for 3,345 bolivars. At the strongest official rate, one dollar buys only 10 bolivars, which may be one of the reasons why Maduro wants to opt for some of the weaker exchange rates.

“Venezuela is going to implement a new system of international payments and will create a basket of currencies to free us from the dollar,” Maduro said in a multi-hour address to a new legislative “superbody.” He reportedly did not provide details of this new proposal.

Maduro hinted that the South American country would look to using the yuan instead, among other currencies.

“If they pursue us with the dollar, we’ll use the Russian ruble, the yuan, yen, the Indian rupee, the euro,” Maduro also said.

Venezuela sits on the world’s largest oil reserves but has been undergoing a major crisis, with millions of people going hungry inside the country which has been plagued with rampant, increasing inflation. In that context, the recently established economic blockade by the Trump administration only adds to the suffering of ordinary Venezuelans rather than helping their plight.

According to Reuters, a thousand dollars’ worth of local currency obtained when Maduro came to power in 2013 is now be worth little over one dollar.

A theory advanced in William R. Clark’s book Petrodollar Warfare – and largely ignored by the mainstream media – essentially asserts that Washington-led interventions in the Middle East and beyond are fueled by the direct effect on the U.S. dollar that can result if oil-exporting countries opt to sell oil in alternative currencies. For example, in 2000, Iraq announced it would no longer use U.S. dollars to sell oil on the global market. It adopted the euro, instead.

By February 2003, the Guardian reported that Iraq had netted a “handsome profit” after making this policy change. Despite this, the U.S. invaded not long after and immediately switched the sale of oil back to the U.S. dollar.

In Libya, Muammar Gaddafi was punished for a similar proposal to create a unified African currency backed by gold, which would be used to buy and sell African oil. Though it sounds like a ludicrous reason to overthrow a sovereign government and plunge the country into a humanitarian crisis, Hillary Clinton’s leaked emails confirmed this was the main reason Gaddafi was overthrown. The French were especially concerned by Gaddafi’s proposal and, unsurprisingly, became one of the war’s main contributors. (It was a French Rafaele jet that struck Gaddafi’s motorcade, ultimately leading to his death).

Iran has been using alternative currencies like the yuan for some time now and shares a lucrative gas field with Qatar, which may ultimately be days away from doing the same. Both countries have been vilified on the international stage, particularly under the Trump administration.

Nuclear giants China and Russia have been slowly but surely abandoning the U.S. dollar, as well, and the U.S. establishment has a long history of painting these two countries as hostile adversaries.

Read More @ TheAntiMedia.com

Eight Crooks Against The World – Ted Butler

by Ted Butler, SilverSeek:

I’d like to share what may be a different way of looking at the gold and silver market, but still remain focused on what has been the primary driver of price – changes in the COMEX futures market structure. It has become fairly common knowledge that prices rise when the managed money traders buy and prices fall when these traders sell. So great is the effect on price of this COMEX derivatives positioning that it is discussed in more commentaries than ever before. And that is due to what has become a clearly observable pattern of cause and price effect.

Let me first quantify the amount of gold in existence throughout the world in all forms as 5.6 billion ounces, an amount on which there is near universal agreement. Not all of this gold is thought to be available for sale at some price, such as religious and other artifacts and some jewelry, but much of it could find a way to the market depending on price. Quite arbitrarily, let me assert that 4 billion ounces of gold might find its way to market at some point, including all government holdings and the amount held by the earth’s 7.5 billion inhabitants. Don’t get caught up with the precise amount, as it doesn’t make much of a difference whether the number is 3 billion or 5 billion oz.

Just like in any investment asset, those entities and individuals which hold gold would prefer and would generally be benefited by a rise in the price. Conversely, all the holders of gold would generally be adversely affected by lower prices. This is very basic stuff and in no way is intended to trick anyone; I’m just speaking in very simple terms.  In addition to all the existing physical gold in the world, there is a large gold mining and production industry that extracts 100 million oz of new gold each year; which in turn, is owned by all types of investors, all of which would prefer to see rising gold prices for the obvious reasons.

In summary, the holders of 4 billion oz of gold, as well as those who own the mining companies that extract 100 million gold oz annually, all have a vested interest in higher gold prices and virtually all would be financially damaged by lower prices. This is exactly the same point that could be made in any investment asset, from stocks and bonds to real estate – up in price is good for holders, down in price is not so good. Of course, it’s not simply a matter of good versus not so good, as investment assets and markets can get overpriced or underpriced, depending on collective investment behavior and other factors.

The difference between gold (and silver) and all other markets is that what determines price going up or down has already been established as positioning in COMEX futures. I’m not saying that futures positioning doesn’t exert pricing influence on stocks and bonds, because it does – just nowhere near the extent as in gold or silver. I’m not aware of any influence futures positioning has on real estate, or collectibles, but its influence is rampart among commodities. 

Against all the holders of the existing gold in the world, as well as all the owners of the mining industry that extracts 100 million new ounces annually are configured those who stand to benefit should prices decline and who are worse off should gold prices rise. These are the short sellers, or those who bet on a price decline by selling that which they don’t already own in the hopes of buying later at a lower and more profitable price. Of course, if the short sellers guess wrong and prices rise instead, losses begin to mount as the buyback price rises.

While short selling in gold and silver takes many forms, such as short sales against mining company shares or metal ETFs and the buying and selling of options, the key form of short selling is the shorting of COMEX futures contracts.  No need to reinvent the wheel here – it has already been stipulated by now that COMEX futures positioning is the main (if not sole) gold and silver price driver.  Having established the physical market parameters of gold – 4 billion oz in existence and 100 million new oz produced annually, let me do the same with the COMEX futures positioning opposed to the physical market. In doing so, we happen to be blessed by exquisitely detailed and reliable data from a federal agency, the CFTC, in the form of COT and Bank Participation Reports.

Since COMEX futures contracts are derivatives contracts that means there is both a long and a short for every open contract.  Up front, we know that the long futures contract holders’ interests are aligned with the owners of physical gold and its producers, as all benefit on higher prices and suffer on lower prices. The only entities not aligned with the interest of higher prices are the short sellers of COMEX futures contracts. Here’s where the CFTC’s reports are quite revealing.

The basic glaring fact is that the short positions in COMEX gold and silver futures are incredibly concentrated; meaning they are quite large and held by just a few traders. In both versions of every COT futures only report (legacy and disaggregated), the long form report gives detailed concentration data on the 4 and 8 largest traders’ holdings to the nearest contract. Let me make my point using the 8 largest traders, but I could do so just as easily with the 4 largest traders.

A quick word on the concentration data. As regular readers know, I’ve harped on the concentrated short position is silver for years and even decades. It is the key to manipulation, for without an extremely concentrated position, manipulation is impossible. And while I could never get the CFTC to admit that they monitor and publish concentration data as the best early warning sign of potential price manipulation (out of fear they might appear to agree with anything I wrote), there is no other plausible reason for the Commission to collect and record such data.

But as important as the concentration data is to the silver (and gold) manipulation, it is not just the CFTC that continues to ignore this vital information. Despite the literal explosion in the amount of interest now focused on the COT market structure approach, I can’t recall a single independent reference or article on the concentration data (not quoting me). That’s a shame, because the concentration data always provide insight vital to understanding what makes these markets tick. Not to consider changes in concentration data, particularly in COMEX gold and silver, is a waste of epic proportions.

In trying to understand why there is continued aversion to pondering the concentration data in gold and silver, despite the explosion of COT commentary overall, the only explanation I have been able to come up with is that getting the concentration data requires the additional step of doing a simple calculation involving multiplication in order to get a very precise contract amount. It’s certainly not a case of the calculation being difficult (although I do use a $3 solar-powered calculator that has to be 20 years old), I think it’s more a case of a lack of awareness about how to derive the concentration data. Let’s face it, when someone first observes the COT report, it looks like a mumbo jumbo of incomprehensible numbers; now I’m telling you to whip out your pocket calculator to create more numbers. Be that as it may, that’s the way it is.  

The way the CFTC presents the concentration data, in percentage terms of total open interest, mandates one additional calculation and, quite frankly, I believe this prevents many from considering the data. And while I am not shy about criticizing the agency on a variety of matters, having considered this issue for many years, I’m convinced the CFTC is presenting the data efficiently. I suppose I would prefer the concentration data be presented in contract terms, but personal preferences aside, there is no real barrier to arriving at the data. Only two numbers matter, the net short positions of the four and eight largest traders; disregard gross completely and the concentrated long positions, as they don’t matter.

Read More @ SilverSeek.com

Further thoughts on Gibson’s paradox

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by Alasdair Macleod, GoldMoney:

“The paradox is one of the most completely established empirical facts in the whole field of quantitative economics.” – John Maynard Keynes

“The Gibson paradox remains an empirical phenomenon without a theoretical explanation” -Friedman and Schwartz

“No problem in economics has been more hotly debated.” – Irving Fisher

Introduction

Two years ago, I found a satisfactory solution to Gibson’s paradox.i The paradox is important, because it demonstrated that between 1750-1930, interest rates in Britain correlated with the general price level, and had no correlation with the rate of price inflation. And as Friedman and Schwartz wrote, a theoretical explanation eluded even eminent economists, so economists preferred to assume the quantity theory of money was the correct guide to the relationship between interest rates and prices. Therefore, the consequence of resolving the paradox is that the supposed linkage between interest rates, the quantity of money and the effect on prices is disproved.

Gibson’s paradox tells us that the basis of monetary policy is fundamentally flawed. The reason this error has been ignored is that no neo-classical economist has been able to establish why Gibson’s paradox is valid, as the introductory quotes tell us. Consequently, this little-know but very important subject is hardly ever discussed nowadays, and it’s a fair bet most of today’s central bankers are unaware of it.

The relationship between interest rates and the general level of prices held until the 1970s. This article summarises why Gibson’s paradox functioned, why interest rates do not correlate with price inflation, and the reasons it failed to be evident after the 1970s.

For ease of reference, here are the two charts reproduced from my original paper that the paradox refers to, the first illustrating the correlation between interest rates and the price level, and the second the lack of correlation between interest rates and the inflation rate in Britain, the only country where such a long run of statistics is available.

Resolving the paradox boiled down to answering a very simple question: is the interest rate set by demand from the borrower based on what he is prepared to pay, or is it set by the interest rate demands of the saver, seeking a decent return on his money? The neo-classical assumption has it that in a free market it is what the saver demands to part with the temporary use of his money that controls the loan rate, and the borrower is at his mercy.

Indeed, all the literature going back to pre-Keynesian days assumes that consumers decide interest rates by dividing consumption between what is needed today, and what should be saved for the future. The problem that preoccupied theologians was that of greedy savers, morally guilty of usury. The two principal monotheistic religions, Christianity and Islam, held that usury is a sin, and Islam to this day insists its followers must not lend for interest. The vision of the idle rich living off the income of their capital also fuelled post-Marxian sentiment. The bias of opinion has always been against the seemingly idle saver and in favour of the industrious debtor. The saver is cast as a villain, and even central bank policy today is biased against him.

The assumption, that it is the saver who demands the interest rate, carried throughout the known history of economics, and finds its more recent expression with Keynes, who wanted to do away with saving altogether.ii He gave savers the epithet of rentier, an ugly word suggesting a rich man who rents out his capital, gathering in profit from the efforts of others. I found only one exception to this common view in the textbooks, and that was almost an aside in von Mises’s Theory of Money and Credit. He stated that the demand for capital takes the form of a demand for money.iii

So, money is demanded. Mises’s view of the relationship of cash to loans, which Keynes in his General Theory professed to not understandiv, overturns religious and socialist assumptions about the wicked saver. According to von Mises, he provides a service to businessmen by making capital available for production. Going back a page in von Mises’s Theory, we find that he also held that:

Capital goods or production goods derive their value from the value of their prospective products, but as a rule remain somewhat below it. The margin by which the value of capital goods falls short of that of their expected products constitutes interest; its origin lies in the natural difference between present goods and future goods.v

This being the case, clearly the rate of interest is set by what the borrower will pay to secure profitable production of future goods, not what a usurious rentier, as Keynes and others had it, will demand.

The businessman sets the price of borrowing by having the option not to borrow. In his calculations, he will attempt to quantify his fixed and marginal costs of production, and the added productive capacity additional capital will provide. He must estimate the wholesale value of his extra production, to assess his profits, gross of interest. He is then able to judge what interest he is prepared to pay to secure the capital required for a viable proposition. The businessman’s expectation of wholesale values is therefore linked to the cost of borrowing. It is for this reason that the interest paid by a manufacturer and wholesale values correlated, and therefore why interest rates correlated with the general price level.

Implications for monetary policy

Having established why bond yields correlated with the general price level, we must now show why they did not correlate with the rate of price inflation. It is easy to comprehend that the quantity of borrowing for productive purposes, as opposed to the quantity of money, can be regulated by interest rates, and indeed, if interest rates are raised, fewer manufacturing opportunities will be profitable and fewer will be embarked upon. Therefore, there is a link between interest rates and how money is used. The reason this did not translate into a correlation between interest rates and the rate of inflation is changes in interest rates only reflect changes in the allocation of money between immediate consumption and savings. You can change the quantity of money in the economy as much as you like, but this still holds true.

Read More@ GoldMoney.com

Debt Ceiling Capitulation Spells Trouble Ahead for the Dollar

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by Stefan Gleason, Money Metals:

“Frustration” no longer adequately describes what reformers in Congress – along with millions of investors and taxpayers who voted for reform – are feeling. For many, hopelessness is beginning to set in on the prospects for tax, budgetary, and monetary reform following Wednesday’s GOP capitulation on the debt ceiling.

Democrats shamelessly exploited the Hurricane Harvey disaster to couple the $7.85 billion disaster aid package with demands on unrelated issues in the budget. Congress didn’t pay for the bill with offsetting spending cuts, as the Club for Growth and other fiscal conservatives had urged.

Instead, this emergency spending (and more to come) will simply be added to the national credit card.

If there’s any fiscal upshot, it could be for those holding contra-dollar investments such as precious metals. The U.S. Dollar Index has been in a downtrend all year. It may now have impetus to fall further.

Months of legislative failure and inaction have caught up with Republicans. A recent Fox News poll shows that only 15{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} of voters approve of the job Congress is doing. Now – faced with a disaster in Texas and another one on the way in Florida that could inflict hundreds of billions of dollars more in damage – Republicans are being pushed by circumstances beyond their control.

Their president has all but given up on them. He is, understandably, beyond frustrated with feckless Republican leadership on Capitol Hill.

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate spoiler vote John McCain have seemingly devoted more effort to publicly criticizing President Donald Trump’s choices of words than passing GOP legislation.

This week, President Trump foisted the “DACA” immigration issue upon a Congress that doesn’t want to have to deal with it on top of everything else now on their capitulation schedule for the rest of the year.

Trump’s abrupt move left Americans confused as to what he wants Congress to do with President Obama’s illegal DACA amnesty directive. Trump had campaigned against it. Now apparently he wants DACA “legalized” in some form.

Trump Joins with Democrats on Debt Ceiling Extension

Perhaps Trump now sees reaching out to Democrats as his only viable political path forward. On Wednesday, according to Politico, Trump “turned on Republican leaders in Congress when he caved to Democrats’ demands to raise the debt limit and fund the government for three months, setting up a brutal year-end fiscal cliff.”

The three-month extension could give conservatives another shot at attaching reforms to the next funding bill. But so far Republicans have been outmaneuvered at every turn by Democrats and the forces of more spending and more debt.

President Trump’s decisions on Federal Reserve appointments in the months ahead will be critical. They will majorly help determine the outlook for interest rates and the value of the Federal Reserve Note, commonly thought of as the U.S. dollar.

Trump Has Four Fed Openings to Fill, Inflation Doves Expected

This week, Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer announced he will resign from the Board of Governors by mid October. That will leave four out of the seven seats on the Board vacant, with one nomination currently pending before the Senate. President Trump will be able to put his stamp on the central bank in a big way with appointments, especially if chooses to replace Fed chair Janet Yellen after her term expires in February 2018.

The Fed may get some new faces in the months ahead, but it’s very unlikely to acquire a new philosophy. The Keynesian philosophy of perpetual credit expansion enables all spending excesses out of Congress and therefore enjoys broad bipartisan support.

In his letter of resignation, Stanley Fischer praised himself and his Fed colleagues for fighting the credit crisis by issuing more credit: â€śInformed by the lessons of the recent financial crisis, we have built upon earlier steps to make the financial system stronger and more resilient and better able to provide the credit so vital to the prosperity of our country’s households and businesses.”

Read More @ MoneyMetals.com

Bitcoin Crashes On Massive Volume As China Plans To Shut Local Exchanges

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from Zero Hedge:

Having bounced back dramatically from the 20{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} plunge following China’s ban of ICOs, Bitcoin is getting battered again this morning on very heavy volume as Caixin reports Chinese authorities plan to shut local Bitcoin exchanges.

Via Google Translate

The supervisory authority has decided to close the exchange of virtual currency in China , which involves all the currencies and currencies of the currency , such as “currency line”, “coins” and “Bitcoin China.”

Journalists confirmed the news from the person who came close to the Internet Financial Risk Special Rectification Working Group (hereinafter referred to as the Leading Group) and learned that the resolution had been deployed to the local level.

This is following the September 4 People’s Bank of seven ministries and commissions joint announcement (hereinafter referred to as the announcement) after further supervision action. The announcement will mark ICO (Initial Coin Offering) as “illegal financial activities” and order the ICO to be banned on the date of publication of the announcement. All ICO tokens trading platforms need to be cleared to close the transaction.

Note, Caixin reports that the purpose of regulation is not limited to more than 60 ICO tokens trading platform, will not engage in a number of ICO virtual currency trading platform into the clean-up range, limited to close.

“In other words, the future in China can not have the so-called virtual currency and the currency between the trading platform.”

The close to the leading group, said: “In this way, there is no so-called tokens, virtual currency and RMB between the two Can not trade the problem. “

Of course, Chinese authorities are careful to point out how nefarious Bitcoin is…

Regulators believe that virtual currency investment activities for illegal fund-raising and other types of illegal financial activities provided a hotbed, easy to cause greater financial risk.

Because ordinary investors can not distinguish between the difference between Bitcoin and Leigh coins, but also can not identify the difference between the various pseudo-virtual currency. And a large number of “money” illegal fund-raising activities are from the bitter currency frenzy, including the special currency trading places frenzy. “The bitter market is hot all the crazy ‘currency’ market and one of the root causes of illegal activities chaos, ICO crazy also from Bitcoin crazy.

Bitco currency trading place chaos and bit currency hot , Triggering the use of Bitcoin to support illegal financial activities, including pyramid schemes, fraud and other issues.

All sounds very ominous, and the reaction is swift…

Read More @ ZeroHedge.com