Sep 01

ConocoPhillips Fires 10% Of Global Workforce, Warns Of “Dramatic Downturn” To Oil Industry (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015):

Where the great oil crash hits close to home for most Americans, is when firms such as Houston based ConocoPhillips announce that the E&P giant is about to terminate 10%, or 1,800 people, of its global workforce, in the next several weeks as it copes with low oil prices. “Our industry is undergoing a dramatic downturn, which has caused us to look at our future workforce needs. As we have assessed the implications of lower prices on our business, we’ve made the difficult decision that workforce reductions will be necessary.”

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Sep 01

Redistribution

The Oligarch Recovery – Low Income Americans Can’t Afford to Live in Any Metro Area (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Sept 1, 2015):

We were told we needed to bail out Wall Street in order to save Main Street. Well the results are in…

Wall Street has never done better, and Main Street has never done worse.

From the Huffington Post:

Low-income workers and their families do not earn enough to live in even the least expensive metropolitan American communities, according to a new analysis of families’ living costs published Wednesday. Continue reading »

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Sep 01

WTI Crude Crashes 8% – Biggest Plunge Since Nov 2014’s OPEC Meeting (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015)

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Sep 01

Not “Unequivocally Good” – Canada Enters Recession (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015):

It appears low oil prices are not awesome for everyone. For the second quarter in a row, Canadian GDP dropped (-0.5%) pushing America’s northern neighbor back into recession. What is ironic is that this was better than the 1% drop that was expected and so CAD is strengthening.

20150901_gdp

and the kneejerk is a strengthening of CAD against the USD as the drop was less than expected… Continue reading »

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Sep 01

Global Trade In Freefall: South Korea Exports Crash Most Since 2009 (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015):

While the market’s attention overnight was focused on China’s crumbling manufacturing and service PMI, data which was already hinted in the flash PMI reports earlier in August, the real stunner came not from China but from South Korea, which last night reported an unprecedented 14.7% collapse in exports, far worse than the -5.9% consensus estimate, and more than 4 times worse than July’s 3.4%. The number is critical because not only do exports account for about half of South Korea’s GDP but because it also happens to be the first major exporting country to report monthly trade data. That makes it the perfect barometer of global trade flows, or as the case may be, the canary in the global trade coalmine. It also confirms what we reported just one week ago when we said that Global Trade Is In Freefall.”

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Sep 01

– China Takes “10 Steps Back,” Slaps 20% Reserve Requirement On Currency Forwards (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015):

Overnight, China decided to take steps to reduce “macro financial risks.”

And by that they mean “do something quick to help ease pressure on the yuan” and by extension, on the PBoC’s rapidly depleting FX reserves.

To that end, starting October 15 banks will have to hold the equivalent of 20% of clients’ FX forward positions with the PBoC, where the money will sit, frozen, for a year, at 0% interest. Continue reading »

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Sep 01

US Equities Are Crashing Again – Dow Futures Down 430, AAPL -2.75%; NYSE Unleashes Rule 48 (Again) (ZeroHedge, Sept 1, 2015):

*NYSE AND NYSE MKT CASH EQUITIES MARKETS WILL INVOKE RULE 48

US equity futures markets have just pushed to fresh overnight lows, with the last leg down seemingly triggered by the CAD recession print. Let’s hope Cramer and Cook have another email up their sleeves as weakness in AAPL is notable – down 2.75% in the pre-market. Lastly, we noted US equities are rapidly catching back down to the XIV-implied lows as the last few days bounce evaporates.

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Sep 01

Shemitah-2015

Related info:

10 Things That Are Going To Happen Within 15 Days Of The End Of The Shemitah

SHEMITAH EXPOSED: Financial Crisis Planned For September 2015 (Video)


In The Month Of September 2015 We Officially Enter The Danger Zone (Economic Collapse, Aug 31, 2015):

Is September 2015 going to be one of the most important months in modern American history?  When I issued my first ever “red alert” for the last six months of 2015 back in June, I was particularly concerned with the months of September through December, and not just for economic reasons.  All of the intel that I have received is absolutely screaming that big trouble is ahead.  So enjoy these last few days of relative peace and quiet.  I mean that sincerely.  In fact, that is exactly what I have been doing – over the past week I have not posted many articles because I was spending time with family, friends and preparing for the national call to prayer on September 18th and 19th.   But now as we enter the chaotic month of September 2015 I have a feeling that there is going to be plenty for me to write about. Continue reading »

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Aug 31

Is China Dumping German Paper Now? Bund Prices Are Collapsing (ZeroHedge, Aug 31, 2015):

German bonds are under significant pressure again this morning – despite equity weakness and US Treasury strength. This raises the rather interesting question of whether – after decimating Treasuries last week, is China turning to its Bund holdings and liquidating them to raise cash?

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Aug 31

Coming to a country near you, much faster than most people think.

Flashback:

This Is What Crisis Feels Like: Basic Services Still Functioned, No One Had To Really Worry About Food Or Water … Then It All Changed … Literally Within A Day!

There will be hunger in Europe and in the U.S., especially after the financial/economic collapse.


venezuela-hunger

80 Year Old Woman Trampled To Death In Venezuela Supermarket Stampede (ZeroHedge, Aug 30, 2015):

With 30% of Venzuelans eating two or fewer meals per day, social unrest is mounting rapidly in President Nicolas Maduro’s socialist utopia. As WSJ reports,soldiers have now been deployed to stem rampant food smuggling and price speculation, which Maduro blames for triple-digit inflation and scarcity. “Due to the shortage of food… the desperation is enormous,” local opposition politician Andres Camejo said, and nowhere is that more evident than the trampling death of an 80-year-old woman outside a state-subsidized supermarket.

As Reuters reports,

An 80-year-old Venezuelan woman died, possibly from trampling, in a scrum outside a state supermarket selling subsidized goods, the opposition and media said on Friday.

The melee at the store in Sabaneta, the birthplace of former Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez, was the latest such incident in the South American nation where economic hardship and food shortages are creating long queues and scuffles.

The opposition Democratic Unity coalition said Maria Aguirre died and another 75 people were injured – including five security officials – in chaotic scenes when National Guard troops sought to control a 5,000-strong crowd with teargas.

“Due to the shortage of food … the desperation is enormous,” local opposition politician Andres Camejo said, according to the coalition’s website. It published a photo of an elderly woman’s body lying inert on a concrete floor.

Camejo said thieves had also attacked the crowd, members of which were seeking to buy cheap food on offer at an outlet of the state’s Mercal supermarket chain in Barinas state.

venezuela-empty-shelves

El Universal newspaper reported that Aguirre was knocked to the ground during jostling in the crowd, while the pro-opposition El Nacional said she was crushed in a stampede.

Another person was killed and dozens detained following looting of supermarkets in Venezuela’s southeastern city of Ciudad Guayana earlier this month.

President Nicolas Maduro accuses opponents of deliberately stirring up trouble, exaggerating incidents, and sabotaging the economy to try and bring down his socialist government.

Critics, though, say incidents of unrest are symptoms of the increasing hardships Venezuela’s 29 million people are facing due to a failed state-led economic model. Low oil prices are exacerbating economic tensions in the OPEC nation.

Venezuelans protest the starvatiion with signs saying ‘hunger’…

venezuela-hunger

Shoppers are finger-printed when buying government-controlled foods…

venezuela-fingerprints

“What’s certain is that we are going very hungry here and the children are suffering a lot,” said María Palma, a 55-year-old grandmother who on a recent blistering hot day had been standing in line at the grocery store since 3 a.m. before walking away empty-handed at midday.

In a national survey, as WSJ reports, the pollster Consultores 21 found 30% of Venezuelans eating two or fewer meals a day during the second quarter of this year, up from 20% in the first quarter.

Around 70% of people in the study also said they had stopped buying some basic food item because it had become unavailable or too expensive.

As The Mises Institute’s Carmen Elena Dorobat details,

Millions, Billions, Trillions: The Disaster of Socialism, Once Again

Venezuela’s nearly full-blown socialism is making the news once again. For approximately two years now, the country’s economic crisis has been rapidly unfolding: rising prices, fuelled by increased scarcity of goods and a depreciating currency, were followed by price controls, which brought about even higher prices and more shortages. The list of basic commodities missing from stores, such as toilet paper, has gradually expanded to include cooking oil, corn flour, sugar, sanitary pads, batteries, coffins, and even oil (once the country’s main export). The Cendas survey showed that more than a third of foodstuffs cannot be found on supermarket shelves; moreover, vegetables are 32% more expensive every month, meat prices are going up by 22% every month, and beans are surging by 130%. Basic Venezuelan dishes containing rice and beans have thus become a luxury, as people queue for 8 hours a week, on average, to buy basic goods.

This time it was the bolivar, Venezuela’s currency, which made the headlines, as it tumbled from 82 bolivars to the dollar last year, to 300 bolivars in May, and to a staggering 670 bolivars this August. Because the Venezuelan administration stopped publishing inflation figures in December 2014 (when annual inflation reached 68%), some economists have designed an Arepa (i.e. cornmeal cake with cheese) hyperinflation index, which suggests a current inflation rate of around 400%. Others estimate the annual inflation rate is actually 808%.

A photo of a Venezuelan using a 2 bolivar banknote as a napkin to hold a cheesy pastry (an empanada) has recently gone viral: the banknote is worth less than a third of one US cent on the black market, while the price of a pack of napkins is about 500-600 bolivars. The photo is reminiscent of the Weimar Republic hyperinflationary episode, where the wholesale price index jumped from 100% in July 1922 to more than 2500% in January 1923, which led to German banknotes being used to light fires (right photo).

One can only speculate at the moment the extent of the damage this episode will leave on Venezuelan savings. But if history is any indication, we could soon hear stories similar to those of some of Mises’s acquaintances (recorded from his lectures by his student, Bettina Bien-Greaves):

[A] man made a will according to which this $ 2,000,000 was to be sent back to Europe to establish another orphan asylum such as that in which this man had been educated. This was just before World War I. The money was sent back to Europe. According to the usual procedure it had to be invested in government bonds of this country, interest to be paid every year to keep up the asylum. But the war came, and the inflation. And the inflation reduced to zero this fortune of $ 2,000,000 invested in European Marks—simply to zero.

[The president of a Bank in Vienna] told me that as a young man in his twenties he had taken out a life insurance policy much too large for his economic condition at the time. He expected that when it was paid out it would make him a well-to-do burgher. But when he reached his sixtieth birthday, the policy became due. The insurance, which had been a tremendous sum when he had taken it out thirty five years before, was just sufficient to pay for the taxi ride back to his office after going to collect the insurance in person. Now what had happened? Prices went up, yet the monetary quantity of the policy remained the same. He had in fact for many, many decades made savings. For whom? For the government to spend and devastate (Mises 2010, 30-31).

As news of Venezuela’s suffering keeps coming through, one cannot help but feel a certain sense of dread. All governments control the money supply to essentially the same extent that Maduro’s administration does. All around the world we have monetary socialism, where national currencies are subject solely to political power. And one cannot help but wonder (and fear) how many more such economic disasters it will take before it becomes clear that socialism of all shapes, sizes, and degrees, is unrealizable, unbearable, and unforgivable.

*  *  *

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Aug 31

Federal-Reserve-progress


Ron Paul Rages “Blame The Fed, Not China” For The Stock Market Crash (The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, Aug 30, 2015):

Following Monday’s historic stock market downturn, many politicians and so-called economic experts rushed to the microphones to explain why the market crashed and to propose “solutions” to our economic woes. Not surprisingly, most of those commenting not only failed to give the right answers, they failed to ask the right questions.Many blamed the crash on China’s recent currency devaluation. It is true that the crash was caused by a flawed monetary policy. However, the fault lies not with China’s central bank but with the US Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve’s inflationary policies distort the economy, creating bubbles, which in turn create a booming stock market and the illusion of widespread prosperity. Inevitably, the bubble bursts, the market crashes, and the economy sinks into a recession. Continue reading »

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Aug 31

Austrian Economics Is Now Equivalent To Terrorism Thanks To Latest Islamic State “Gold Standard” Propaganda Clip (ZeroHedge, Aug 30, 2015):

What better way to mute demands for a return to sound money and the gold standard, than by making them equivalent to jihadist terrorism? Why, there are none, which is why some were thoroughly amused to see that yesterday the Islamic State’s so called media center, the al Hayat, released a video whose production qualities are nothing short of Hollywood (or San Fernando valley at worst), in which the latest and greatest “jihadist terrorist group” that was a byproduct of US intervention in the Middle East, announces it is preparing to take on the Fed itself with, drumroll, “the return of the gold dinar.”

As Bloomberg reminds us, the Islamic State’s Shura Council last year tasked its Beit al Mal, or treasury, with minting the coins, which come in several denominations made of gold, silver and copper.

Continue reading »

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Aug 31

Bernie Sanders

Video of the Day – Bernie Sanders Says “I Think the Business Model of Wall Street is Fraud” (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 30, 2015):

During a recent interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, Bernie Sanders exclaimed: “I think the business model of Wall Street is fraud.”

Basically. Unfortunately, it will never change until serious jail sentences are handed out for the serious fraud, as opposed to taxpayer bailouts.

Watch the interview here. Is it really surprising that he’s close to catching Wall Street handler Hillary Clinton?

For related articles, see:

Continue reading »

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Aug 31

“Going medieval” … this will – possibly – prove to be spot on, because that might be exactly what, what is planned for us by TPTB.

The fastest traveling speed will be 30 kph/18 mph, …. riding a horse.


Say Goodbye to Normal (Kunstler, Aug 31, 2015):

The tremors rattling markets are not exactly what they seem to be. A meme prevails that these movements represent a kind of financial peristalsis – regular wavelike workings of eternal progress toward an epic more of everything, especially profits! You can forget the supposedly “normal” cycles of the techno-industrial arrangement, which means, in particular, the business cycle of the standard economics textbooks. Those cycle are dying.

They’re dying because there really are Limits to Growth and we are now solidly in grips of those limits. Only we can’t recognize the way it is expressing itself, especially in political terms. What’s afoot is a not “recession” but a permanent contraction of what has been normal for a little over two hundred years. There is not going to be more of everything, especially profits, and the stock buyback orgy that has animated the corporate executive suites will be recognized shortly for what it is: an assest-stripping operation. Continue reading »

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Aug 30

The virtuous circle that has sustained the dollar and buoyed USD assets for decades has definitively been broken. Now, with China’s Treasury liquidation serving to exacerbate the pressure from the demise of the petrodollar, it’s critical to take stock of accumulated petrodollar reserves in order to understand how large the unwind could ultimately be in a worst case scenario. As it turns out, narrowly focusing on official FX reserves could understate the size of petrodollar accumulation by some $2.5 trillion.


 

Petrodollar

Why The Great Petrodollar Unwind Could Be $2.5 Trillion Larger Than Anyone Thinks (ZeroHedge, Aug 29, 2015)

 

 

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Aug 30

helicopter-shinzo-abetime-man-of-the-year-helicopter-ben-bernanke

Citigroup Chief Economist Thinks Only “Helicopter Money” Can Save The World Now (ZeroHedge, Aug 29, 2015):

Having recently explained (in great detail) why QE4 (and 5, 6 & 7) were inevitable (despite the protestations of all central planners, except for perhaps Kocharlakota – who never met an economy he didn’t want to throw free money at), we found it fascinating that no lessor purveyor of the status quo’s view of the world – Citigroup’s chief economist Willem Buiter – that a global recession is imminent and nothing but a major blast of fiscal spending financed by outright “helicopter” money from the central banks will avert the deepening crisis. Faced with China’s ‘Quantitative Tightening’, the economist who proclaimed “gold is a 6000-year old bubble” and cash should be banned, concludes ominously, “everybody will be adversely affected.”


 

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Aug 30

dynamite

This Market Is a “Wheelbarrow of Dynamite” Waiting to Blow (Daily Reckoning, Aug 28, 2015)

Aug 30

Contactless Payment Points Could Be Made Compulsory In All UK Shops

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Aug 29

black swan two
And more is coming where that came from.


Nassim Taleb’s Fund Made $1 Billion On Monday; This Is How The Other “Hedge” Funds Did (ZeroHedge, Aug 28, 2015):

You can’t say Nassim Taleb didn’t warn you: the outspoken academic-philosopher, best known for his prediction that six sigma “fat tail”, or black swan, events happen much more frequently than they should statistically (perhaps a main reason why there is no longer a market but a centrally-planned cesspool of academic intervention) just had a black swan land smack in the middle of the Universa hedge fund founded by ardent Ron Paul supporter Mark Spitznagel, and affiliated with Nassim Taleb.

The result: a $1 billion payday, translating into a 20% YTD return, in a week when the VIX exploded from the teens to over 50, and which most other hedge funds would love to forget.

The WSJ reports: Continue reading »

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Aug 29

damian-mcbride-collapse

According to McBride,

We were close enough in 2008 and what’s coming is on 20 times that scale.


We Are All Preppers Now (ZeroHedge, Aug 28, 2015):

Via The Mises Institute,

Damian McBride is the former head of communications at the British treasury and former special adviser to Gordon Brown, erstwhile Prime Minister of the U.K. Yesterday he tweeted some surprising advice in response to the plunge in global equities markets.;

Advice on the looming crash, No. 1: get hard cash in a safe place now; don’t assume banks & cashpoints will be open, or bank cards will work.

Crash advice No. 2: do you have enough bottled water, tinned goods & other essentials at home to live a month indoors? If not, get shopping.

Crash advice No. 3: agree a rally point with your loved ones in case transport and communication gets cut off; somewhere you can all head to.

Evidently, McBride interprets the wipe-out of over $3 trillion in total global market cap during the three-day rout as a prelude to a much broader and deeper financial crash that will precipitate civil unrest. Continue reading »

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