Jan 24

Related info:

- Russia And Iran Sign Defense Deal, … ‘May Resolve’ S-300 Missile Delivery Issue (RT, Jan 20, 2015)


- De-Dollarization Complete: Iran Abandons US Dollar In Foreign Trade (ZeroHedge, Jan 24, 2015):

Since last May (and likely long before) when the topic of “de-dollarization” was first uttered in official circles (and not just tin-foil-hat-wearing blogs), the rest of the world (un-isolated as they are) has been warming to the idea that perhaps – just perhaps – it is time to de-dollarize (more or less depending on the despotic region in question). From currency swap agreements to bi-lateral trade agreements to selling US Treasuries and greatly rotating USD reserves into gold, the world’s nations (small and large) appear less and less comfortable holdings dollars in this tempestuous world. Among the supporters of that first “de-dollarization” meeting were China and Iran and while the former continues to work down its exposure, the latter – Iran, according to Tasnim news agency, has almost entirely eliminated USDollars from its reserves and is no longer using dollars in foreign trade.

Nothing lasts forever… Continue reading »

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Jan 24

Gold-101

- This Is What Gold Does In A Currency Crisis, Euro Edition (Dollar Collapse, Jan 22, 2015):

Yesterday the European Central Bank acknowledged that the currency it manages is being sucked into a deflationary vortex. It responded in the usual way with, in effect, a massive devaluation. Eurozone citizens have also responded predictably, by converting their unbacked, make-believe, soon-to-be-worth-a-lot-less paper money into something tangible. They’re bidding gold up dramatically.

So after falling hard in 2013 and treading water for most of 2014, the euro price of gold has gone parabolic in the space of a couple of months. This sudden rather than gradual awakening is the standard pattern for a currency crisis, mainly because it takes a long time for most people to figure out their government is clueless and/or lying. But once they do figure it out, they act quickly.

Gold-in-euros-Jan-2015

Europe’s gold chart isn’t as dramatic as Russia’s (see it here) because Europe doesn’t depend on oil exports and the euro, while dropping versus the dollar, isn’t yet in free-fall. But with another trillion euros due to hit the market in the coming year, and a series of currency union-threatening political crises in the pipeline, the flight to safety could easily become a stampede.

Europe and Russia, meanwhile aren’t the only countries with incipient currency crises. Here’s gold in Canadian dollars: Continue reading »

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Jan 24

Bazooka man Draghi, taking aim at the euro

- The Lunatics Are Running the Asylum: Draghi’s Money Printing Bazooka (Acting-Man, Jan 22, 2015):

Conclusion:

Given that already surging money supply growth rates in the euro area are now bound to increase at an even stronger rate, economic activity as measured by aggregate statistics is bound to pick up eventually. It is always important to keep in mind though that quantitatively measurable “activity” as such is not telling us anything about its quality. The boom prior to the 2008 crisis was also characterized by a measurable increase in “activity”, but as it turned out, most of it was merely a complete waste of scarce capital.

There is no reason to assume that this time will be different. These boom-bust sequences will continue until the economy is structurally undermined to such an extent that monetary intervention cannot even create the illusory prosperity of a capital-consuming boom anymore.

The bankers applauding Draghi’s actions today will come to rue them tomorrow.

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Jan 24

Soros


- How The Swiss National Bank Almost Crushed George Soros (ZeroHedge, Jan 23, 2015):

Minutes after last week’s Swiss National Bank shocker, jokingly we mused:

… because there would be nothing more ironic if the man who “broke the Bank of England” ended up being FXCMed himself by another central bank, over two decades later and just as he was set to finally retire, at the age of 84, formally, something he supposedly announced in Davos yesterday. Continue reading »

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Jan 24

- Mario Draghi: Charlatan Of The Apparatchiks (David Stockman’s Contra Corner, Jan 22, 2015):

Well, he finally launched “whatever it takes” and that marks an inflection point. Mario Draghi has just proved that the servile apparatchiks who run the world’s major central banks will stop at nothing to appease the truculent gamblers they have unleashed in the casino. And that means there will eventually be a monumental crash landing because the bubble beneficiaries are now commanding the bubble makers.

There is not one rational reason why the ECB should be purchasing $1.24 trillion of existing sovereign bonds and other debt securities during the next 18 months. Forget all the ritual incantation emanating from the central bankers about fighting deflation and stimulating growth. The ECB has launched into a massive bond buying campaign for the sole purpose of redeeming Mario Draghi’s utterly foolish promise to make speculators stupendously rich by the simple act of buying now (and on huge repo leverage, too) what he guaranteed the ECB would be buying latter.

So today’s program amounts to a giant bailout in the form of a big fat central bank “bid” designed to prop up prices in the immense parking lot of French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese etc. debt that has been accumulated by hedge funds, prop traders and other rank speculators since mid-2012. Never before have so few—-perhaps several thousand banks and funds—-been pleasured with so many hundreds of billions of ill-gotten gain. Robin Hood is spinning madly in his grave.

Continue reading »

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Jan 24

xi-jinping-vladimir-putin

- More Isolation? Russia, China To Build $240 Billion High-Speed Rail Link (ZeroHedge, Jan 23, 2015):

The ongoing ‘isolation’ of Russia took another turn for the un-isolated-er today when, as Bloomberg reports, China will build a 7,000-kilometer (4,350-mile) high-speed rail link from Beijing to Moscow, at a cost of 1.5 trillion yuan ($242 billion), Beijing’s city government said. The rail-link – which will bring travel time between Beijing and Moscow down from 5 days to 30 hours – signals a 10-year partnership between the two nations and follows the dropping of the French company, Alstom, from the project.

 

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Jan 24

putin_kirchner

And she may be right …

- Israel Starting Trouble in Argentina


- Argentine President “Convinced” Nisman Death Was Not Suicide As New Twists Emerge (ZeroHedge, Jan 23, 2015):

“No one believes the suicide hypothesis,” one of Nisman’s investigative team told Reuters, adding that, “he was very convinced of his ideas and prepared to see them through. He had received threats all his life and it never intimidated him.” With the news of no gunpowder residue sinking in, and protests rising, even Argentina’s President is now uncomfortably admitting it, saying on Thursday that she was “convinced” Nisman’s death was not a suicide, explaining that people had led him astray in his investigation in order to smear her name and then “needed him dead.” However, instead of vowing to shed light on the matter, Fernandez and her government have been on the defensive, trying to refute Nisman’s claims against her. Neighboring Uruguay said it felt sorry for Argentina and that its justice system needs to clear up the case to maintain “the minimal confidence our societies need.”Questions abound… Continue reading »

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Jan 24

hindenburg-burning

- When This Ends, Everybody Gets Hurt (Peak Prosperity, Jan 21, 2015):

It’s Already ‘Later’

My argument is that it’s already ‘later’. We’re living through the period of time when that dawning recognition of limits will finally burst over the horizon, shining a very bright spotlight on a frightening number of our global society’s unsustainable practices.

The most urgent of them all, as far as everyone reading this is concerned, is the very uncomfortable fact that it is our system of money that is most likely to break first and hardest because its very design demands endless growth, without which collapse ensues. Continue reading »

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Jan 23

20150123_EOD

- Crude, Copper, & Euro Currency Crushed By King Dollar’s Best Week In Over 3 Years (ZeroHedge, Jan 23, 2015)

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Jan 23

Elite vs Serfs

- A Billionaire Lectures Serfs in Davos – Claims “America’s Lifestyle Expectations are Far Too High” (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Jan 21, 2015):

If you listened closely this morning, you could hear humanity vomit as JP Morgan CEO, Jamie Dimon, began to speak at Davos. In what amounted to some of the most egotistical and delusional statements heard at a conference filled with egotistical and delusional participants, Mr. Dimon didn’t disappoint. Here are a couple highlights courtesy of Twitter:

Such shameless insincerity would even make his Best Banker Buddy (BBB) Barry Obama blush. I don’t know about you, but I’m eagerly awaiting Mr. Dimon’s 2028 Presidential run with Chelsea Clinton as running mate.

But I digress. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, it has. Enter billionaire Jeff Greene, who’s comments at Davos make Sam Zell look enlightened.

From Bloomberg:

Billionaire Jeff Greene, who amassed a multibillion dollar fortune betting against subprime mortgage securities, says the U.S. faces a jobs crisis that will cause social unrest and radical politics.

“America’s lifestyle expectations are far too high and need to be adjusted so we have less things and a smaller, better existence,” Greene said in an interview today at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “We need to reinvent our whole system of life.” Continue reading »

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Jan 23

- Holder To Use Asset Forfeiture Seizure to Go After Guns:

- SocGen Explains That Since The ECB’s QE Will Fail, It Will Need To Be Increased To €3 Trillion, Include Stocks:

“The potential amount of QE needed is €2-3 trillion! Hence for inflation to reach close to a 2.0% threshold medium term, the potential amount of asset purchases needed is €2-3tn, not a mere €1tn. Should the ECB target such an expansion of its balance sheet, it would have to ease some conditions on its bond purchases (liquidity rule, quality…) or contemplate other asset classes- equity stocks, Real Estate Investment Trust-(REIT), Exchange-traded fund (ETF)…- as the BoJ, previously.”

- BREAKING: Email Shows Gov. Nixon Ordered National Guard OUT OF FERGUSON Before Riots & Destruction

Ferguson Mayor James Knowles told local FOX 2 anchors late on Monday night, November 25, 2014, that he had repeatedly requested the National Guard during the rioting and looting… But his requests were ignored by state Democratic leaders.

- ‘US government was subverting entire US constitution’ – NSA whistleblower:

Award winning whistleblower William Binney says his new job is to make the US government honest, make them face the truth publically, and to prevent further violation of the rights which America has never intended to stand for.

Congress alarmed by plans to use Russian system to route 911 calls:

Plans to route 911 location calls via Russia’s GLONASS satellite system have sparked national security concerns among some members of Congress, despite assurances that its use will be limited and it will help save lives in emergencies.

- Jobless Claims Over 300k For 3rd Week, Spike In Shale States:

Not “unambiguously good” as Shale states see initial jobless claims spiking. Overall initial jobless claims missed expectations for the 4th week in a row, holding above 300k for the 3d week in a row (for the first time since July). At 307k, this week’s print is below last week’s but well above the 300k expectation. However, across TX, CO, ND, PA, and WV, initial claims (1 week lagged) rose to over 75k (from 30k in October)… “crisis has passed”?

Continue reading »

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Jan 23

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Jan 23

- Bloomberg’s Handy Guide To Why Falling Prices Are Horrible For You (ZeroHedge, Jan 22, 2015):

With almost perfect comedic timing, Bloomberg unleashed the mainstream media’s Draghi-confirming raison d’etre for QE… explainining why – shock horror – deflation is bad for you. No matter that the QE efforts of The Fed (and BoJ) entirely (totally and utterly) failed to spark any increase in inflation expectations, we must try try try again. However, despite the exuberant disgruntlement with deflation that Bloomberg offers, Portuguese economy minister Guindos had something ‘odd’ to say this morning: “European deflation is positive.” We are sure he will issue some clarifying statement soon enough walking back such a dangerous and anti-authority comment. Continue reading »

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Jan 23

- What ECB QE Will Do For The World (In 1 Word & 1 Simple Chart) (ZeroHedge, Jan 22, 2015):

Nothing…

  • *DRAGHI SAYS TODAY’S MEASURES WILL BE EFFECTIVE
  • *DRAGHI SAYS TODAY’S MEASURES WILL BOLSTER INFLATION
  • *DRAGHI CITES SIGNALING EFFECT ON INFLATION EXPECTATIONS

Signal This!!

20150122_ECBQE

“Different this time?” or “Einsteinian Insanity”?

With The ECB set to announce a QE4EVA-esque bond-buying initiative within the next hour or two, we thought it worth looking at just what The Fed’s balance-sheet experiment did for inflation expectations (the key narrative that is driving Draghi’s decision) and economic growth (what every politician is demanding Draghi help with)…

The answer… Nothing!!

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Jan 23

- Total Announced Job Cuts In 2015 Just Topped 32,000 (ZeroHedge, Jan 22, 2015):

Presented with little comment aside to note the ironic timing of the surge in job cut announcements from North American firms since President Obama’s “Crisis Has Passed” State of The Union speech…

Job cuts announced by publicly traded firms in North America…

20150121_jobs

Data: Bloomberg

“unambiguously good” – aside from for these 32,102 people…

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Jan 23

- Drug money saved banks in global crisis, claims UN advisor (Guardian, Dec 13, 2009):

Drugs and crime chief says $352bn in criminal proceeds was effectively laundered by financial institutions

Drugs money worth billions of dollars kept the financial system afloat at the height of the global crisis, the United Nations’ drugs and crime tsar has told the Observer.

Antonio Maria Costa, head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, said he has seen evidence that the proceeds of organised crime were “the only liquid investment capital” available to some banks on the brink of collapse last year. He said that a majority of the $352bn (£216bn) of drugs profits was absorbed into the economic system as a result. Continue reading »

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Jan 22

Flashback:
Obama-bows-to-Saudi-King


- Saudi King Abdullah Has Died; Crude Prices Jump (ZeroHedge, Jan 22, 2015):

After first falling ill  and being hospitalized in December, Saudi Arabia officials have announced:

  • *CROWN PRINCE SALMAN SUCCEEDS ABDULLAH AS SAUDI KING: STATE TV

As we noted previously when considering this possibility, “a new King can do (almost) anything he wants, including changing oil policy.” 79-year-old Crown Prince Salman has been named succesor (and has his own health issues). Oil prices popped around 80c on the news.

20150122_babd

As we detailed before, Abdullah’s 79-year-old half-brother has his own health issues and leaves larger questions over the line of succession in one of the world’s most important oil producers remain unanswered. Continue reading »

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Jan 22

- 17,600 Laid-Off Canadian Target Workers Stunned At Ex-CEO’s “Walk-Away” Package (ZeroHedge, Jan 22, 2015):

Earlier this month, Target announced it would close all of its 133 stores in Canada, laying off the 17,600 employees north of the border.

As CBC reports,Target’s “employee trust” package for its Canadian workers, announced last week, amounts to around $56 million, providing each worker with 16 weeks of pay.

20150122_TGT

But – what is perhaps more stunning is that, depending on who’s doing the calculation, the golden handshake “walk-away” package handed to ex-CEO Gregg Steinhafel last May is in roughly the same ballpark at around $61 million, including severance of $15.9 million.

20150122_TGT1

It appears underperforming is the new killing it…

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Jan 22

Super Mario The Magician
Source


Mario-Draghi-Just-Evil

- Mario Draghi Unveils €60 Billion Per Month QE Through September 2016 With Partial Risk-Sharing: Live Conference Webcast (ZeroHedge, Jan 22, 2015):

From “whatever it takes” to OMT to “discussing” bond purchases, with European interest rates at record (incomprehensible) lows (apart from Greece) and EURUSD at 11-year lows (down 25 handles in the last 8 months), Mario Draghi looks set to unleash interventionist ‘hell’ on the investing public in Europe with EUR50 billion (plus plus) of ECB QE per month for as long as it takes.

Priced-in?

20150122_ECB

And then there’s this:

  • *MERKEL SAYS DEBT CRISIS ‘MORE OR LESS UNDER CONTROL,’ NOT OVER
  • *MERKEL SAYS ECB IS MAKING AN INDEPENDENT DECISION TODAY

Live Feed below (in case of error, here is a link to the source webcast): Continue reading »

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Jan 22

- Ukraine Stiffs China for Billions It Owes (Washington’s Blog, Jan 21, 2015):

China paid Ukraine $3B two years ago for grain still not delivered, now demands refund. Another $3.6B that’s owed to China, will probably also default.

Russia’s RIA Novosti News Agency reported, on January 17th, that China is demanding refund of $1.5 billion in cash and of an additional $1.5 billion in Chinese goods that were paid in advance by China (in 2013), for a 2012 Chinese order of grain from Ukraine, which goods still have not been supplied to China. Continue reading »

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