Sep 17

- Germany Issues 2Y Note At Record Low Yield Of -7bps (ZeroHedge, Sep 17, 2014):

Germany sold EUR 3.34 billion 2-year notes to a desparate-for-collateral, safe-haven-seeking, ECB QE-front-running, deflation-pricing market (with exceptional demand – an elevated 2.26x bid-to-cover) for a stunning -0.07% yield… an all-time record low yield issuance for Germany. We have nothing to add…

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Sep 16

- UK Hints At Next Reserve Currency, To Issue Chinese Yuan-Denominated Bond (ZeroHedge, Sep 15, 2014):

Yuanification continues around the world. As The USA attempts to corral its allies in a ‘broad coalition’, an increasing number of people – including domestic economic policy advisors – are shifting away from the USD as primary reserve currency. However, the move by British Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, announced Friday, is likely the most notable yet in the world’s de-dollarization. As Xinhua reports, the British government intend to be the first nation (ex-China) to issue Renminbi denominated bond and to use the proceeds to finance the government’s reserves of foreign currency. Osborne described this dialogue outcome as “a historic moment” and a statement of British confidence in the potential of the RMB to become “the main global reserves currency”.

As Xinhua reports, Continue reading »

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Sep 16

What could possibly go wrong?
mad_max_2_1981



For the best viewing experience, watch the above video in hi-definition (HD) and in expanded screen mode

Debt

“… today the average family of four in America is associated with roughly $735,000 of debt.”

- Debt – Crash Course Chapter 13 (Peak Prosperity, Sep 12, 2014):

There’s just too damn much of it

The fundamental failing of today’s global economy can be summarized simply: Too Much Debt

We have taken too much of it on, too fast, in too many markets around the world, to have any hope of making good on it. Not only does the math not work out, but also on a moral level, we are placing a tremendous obligation on future generations that will unfairly limit the prosperity they can enjoy tomorrow in order to finance our consumption today.

In the US alone, total credit market debt stands at over $57 trillion and is doing its damnedest to continue expanding exponentially. Since simple math shows us that this debt level cannot be supported, the key questions to ask at this stage are:

Will the unsupportable debt disappear via default, or inflation?

And very important: Continue reading »

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Sep 15

Related info:

- The Fed Has A Big Surprise Waiting For You (ZeroHedge, Sep 13, 2014):

The US economy is dead. The Fed has known this for a long time, but pumped it up to where it is now to draw in all the greater fools, the so-called big investors who have made money like honey from QE and ZIRP. They are the greater fools. The American real economy ceased being a consideration long ago. We’re in for big surprises, and they won’t be pretty, they’ll be pretty nasty. There are far too many people who think of themselves as smart who don’t see the difference between a theater play and a reality show. The Fed will raise rates because that will make the biggest banks the most money. There’s nothing else that matters. The Fed can’t revive the US economy, that’s just a foolish notion. But it can suck a lot of wealth out of it.


Federal-Reserve-Bernanke1

- Speculation swirls over Fed language on rate hike (Guardian/AP, Sep 15, 2014):

When the Federal Reserve issues a policy statement after it meets this week, the financial world will be on high alert for two words:

“Considerable time.”

The presence or absence of that phrase will trigger a rush to assess the likely timing of the Fed’s first increase in interest rates since it cut them to record lows in 2008.

The Fed’s recent statements have said it expects to keep its key short-term rate near zero for a “considerable time” after it stops buying Treasurys and mortgage bonds. Those bond purchases have been intended to keep long-term rates down to support the economy. Continue reading »

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Sep 10

- Preparing To Asset-strip Local Government? The Fed’s Bizarre New Rules (Washington’s Blog, Sep 9, 2014):

By Ellen Brown

In an inscrutable move that has alarmed state treasurers, the Federal Reserve, along with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, just changed the liquidity requirements for the nation’s largest banks. Municipal bonds, long considered safe liquid investments, have been eliminated from the list of high-quality liquid collateral. assets (HQLA). That means banks that are the largest holders of munis are liable to start dumping them in favor of the Treasuries and corporate bonds that do satisfy the requirement.

Muni bonds fund the nation’s critical infrastructure, and they are subject to the whims of the market: as demand goes down, interest rates must be raised to attract buyers. State and local governments could find themselves in the position of cash-strapped Eurozone states, subject to crippling interest rates. The starkest example is Greece, where rates went as high as 30% when investors feared the government’s insolvency. Sky-high interest rates, in turn, are the fast track to insolvency. Greece wound up stripped of its assets, which were privatized at fire sale prices in a futile attempt to keep up with the bills. Continue reading »

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Sep 09

- JPMorgan Stunner: “The Current Episode Of Excess Liquidity Is The Most Extreme Ever” (ZeroHedge, Sep 8, 2014):

“The ECB’s quantitative expansion is hitting the financial system at a time when broad liquidity is also very high. The rise in excess liquidity, i.e. the residual in the model of Figure 3, is supportive of all assets outside cash, i.e. bonds, equities and real estate. The current episode of excess liquidity, which began in May 2012, appears to have been the most extreme ever in terms of its magnitude and the ECB actions have the potential to make it even more extreme, in our view…. These liquidity boosts are not without risks. We note that they risk creating asset bubbles which when they burst can destroy wealth leading to adverse economic outcomes. Asset yields are mean reverting over long periods of time and thus historically low levels of yields in bonds, equities and real estate are unlikely to be sustained forever.”
- JPMorgan

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Sep 05

Related info:

- Making $400,000 PER HOUR, The Best Paid Hedge Fund Manager In 2013 Was …


David-Tepper

- David Tepper Is Back, Sees “Beginning Of The End” Of Bond Bubble (ZeroHedge, Sep 4, 2014):

It has been a while since Tepper warned of “nervous time” and told his hedge fund pals “don’t be too freakin’ long.”

Since then the manipulated equity market bubble has gone straight up with every single dip bought massively by the algos, in the process surely eliminating any nervous thoughts Tepper may have had. So in a world starved for pundit philosophy, Bloomberg just reported that the bond market bubble is about to pop, at least according to the folicularly challenged billionaire. The reason, paradoxically enough, the ECB’s decision to monetize private assets and cut rates.

Continue reading »

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Sep 02

Never Gazprom, never Gazprom!


putin smile_0

- More Sanctions: Europe Will Ban Purchase Of Russian Bonds; However Russian Gas Exports Remain Untouched (ZeroHedge, Sep 1, 2014):

Over the weekend, insolvent, debt-dependent Europe thought long and hard how to best punish Russia and moments ago reached yet another milestone in deep projective thought: as Reuters reports, Europeans could be barred from buying new Russian government bonds “under a package of extra sanctions over Moscow’s military role in Ukraine that European Union ambassadors were to start discussing on Monday, three EU sources said.” This will be in addition to the ban on the debt funding of most Russian corporations. So as Europe’s 7-day ultimatum for the Kremlin to “de-escalate” counts down, Putin has a choice: continue operating under a budget surplus and ignore Europe’s latest and most amusing hollow threat which is merely a projection of Europe’s biggest fears, or spend himself into oblivion as Europe has done over the past decade and become a vassal state of the Frankfurt central bank.. Somehow we doubt Putin will lose too much sleep over this latest “escalation”…

Some more details on today’s latest threat by Europe, which if nothing else has sent the ruble to a fresh record low against the dollar, leaving Europe green with envy at such currency debasement, and boosting Russian exports even more: Continue reading »

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Sep 02

- Spain Sells First-Ever 50 Year Bonds At 4% Coupon (ZeroHedge, Sep 1, 2014):

Perhaps in order to celebrate its manufacturing PMI dropping from 53.9 to a below expectations 52.8, refuting the “growth story” promoted by its definitionally re-revised GDP (where the long overdue boost from hookers and blow is finally leading the country to new and improved Keynesian growth curves), moments ago Spain joined the likes of Canada, Caterpillar and Goldman and just issued, for the first time in its history, 50 Year bonds in a private placement. From Bloomberg:

  • SPAIN SELLS EU1B 50-YR BONDS
  • SPAIN TREASURY SELLS FIRST-EVER 50-YR BONDS, COUPON 4%

And since there is no hope that Spain will ever repay this bond, whose rate is dictated by anything – mostly the ECB’s monetary policy – but the fundamentals it is functionally equivalent to Spain raising new equity without a maturity date and a 4% dividend. Continue reading »

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Aug 28

- The Greatest Depression? German Yields Now Negative Through 2017 (ZeroHedge, Aug 27, 2014):

Another night, another sell-side bank suggests European QE must be getting closer and, along with more un-de-escalation in Russia-Ukraine, the bid for German bonds continues to surge as Europe’s greater depression appears increasingly priced into bonds. Yields on all German bonds out to 3 years are now negative and 10Y Bunds have collapsed to 90.5bps – record lows. This in turn – as we explained here - is dragging Treasury yields lower (10Y 2.36%) but leaves the spread to Bunds at record highs.


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Aug 22

- Argentina Stuns Bondholders With Scorched-Earth “Cramdown” Plan (ZeroHedge, Aug 20, 2014):

With the impasse over the latest Argentina default going nowhere fast, late last night president Kirchner stunned its creditors when she announced what amounts to a cramdown plan for holdouts, in which all bonds would be stripped of their existing indentures and converted to local law bonds. Or, as some would call it, a “scorched earth” transaction that burns all bridges, and goodwill, with the international creditor community and likely leaves Argentina unable to access global capital markets for the foreseeable future.

As part of its transaction Argentina would bypass the order issued by Judge Griesa halting payments to all creditors, not just the holdouts, and resume normalcy for the 90%+ of restructured bondholders while leaving Elliott, Aurelius and the like with little to no recourse aside from holding on to claims which would be two swaps behind, and with essentially no legal standing as it would completely bypass the Bank of New York (whom it would remove as trustee) custodian payment process and allow Argentina to make payments directly to those creditors it sees fit. Continue reading »

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Aug 15

bubble burst_0

- 14 Reasons Why The U.S. Economy’s Bubble Of False Prosperity May Be About To Burst (Economic Collapse, Aug 14, 2014):

Did you know that a major event just happened in the financial markets that we have not seen since the financial crisis of 2008?  If you rely on the mainstream media for your news, you probably didn’t even hear about it.  Just prior to the last stock market crash, a massive amount of money was pulled out of junk bonds.  Now it is happening again.  In fact, as you will read about below, the market for high yield bonds just experienced “a 6-sigma event”.  But this is not the only indication that the U.S. economy could be on the verge of very hard times.  Retail sales are extremely disappointing, mortgage applications are at a 14 year low and growing geopolitical storms around the world have investors spooked.  For a long time now, we have been enjoying a period of relative economic stability even though our underlying economic fundamentals continue to get even worse.  Unfortunately, there are now a bunch of signs that this period of relative stability is about to end.

The following are 14 reasons why the U.S. economy’s bubble of false prosperity may be about to burst: Continue reading »

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Aug 14

- Cry for Argentina: Fiscal Mismanagement, Odious Debt or Pillage? (Washington’s Blog, Aug 13, 2014):

Argentina has now taken the US to The Hague for blocking the country’s 2005 settlement with the bulk of its creditors. The issue underscores the need for an international mechanism for nations to go bankrupt. Better yet would be a sustainable global monetary scheme that avoids the need for sovereign bankruptcy.

Argentina was the richest country in Latin America before decades of neoliberal and IMF-imposed economic policies drowned it in debt. A severe crisis in 2001 plunged it into the largest sovereign debt default in history. In 2005, it renegotiated its debt with most of its creditors at a 70% “haircut.” But the opportunist “vulture funds,” which had bought Argentine debt at distressed prices, held out for 100 cents on the dollar. Continue reading »

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Aug 10

- US refuses to recognize UN court jurisdiction on Argentina’s debt (RT, Aug 9, 2014):

Washington has refused to allow the UN International Court of Justice (IJC) to hear Argentina’s claims that US court decisions on the country’s debt have violated Argentina’s sovereignty.

“We do not view the ICJ as an appropriate venue for addressing Argentina’s debt issues, and we continue to urge Argentina to engage with its creditors to resolve remaining issues with bondholders,” the US State Department told Reuters in an email.

The State Department sent an email with the same content to one of Argentina’s leading newspapers, the Clarin. Continue reading »

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Aug 07

- Must Read: Fear And Loathing On The Marketing Trail  (ZeroHedge, Aug 5, 2014)

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Aug 06

- Three Chart Alarm: The Fed Has Set-Up The Corporate Bond Market For A Big Fall (David Stockman’s Contra Corner, Aug 5, 2014):

The three charts below, which appeared in this morning’s Wall Street Journal, are still another reminder that the Fed’s heedless fueling of the third financial bubble this century has done enormous damage to the internals of financial markets.  In this case, investors and savers being brutally punished by ZIRP were herded into bonds funds in a desperate scramble for yield. Accordingly, bond fund assets soared from $1.6 trillion at the time of the financial crisis to $4.1 trillion today.

Yet the market’s structural liquidity condition has gone in the opposite direction. Dealer inventories of corporate bonds have plummeted by nearly 75% from pre-crash levels, meaning that the ratio of dealer inventories to bond fund assets has virtually been vaporized. In 2008 that ratio stood at 15%, but presently it is only 1.5%.  Likewise, daily trading volumes have been cut in half since the crisis.

The implication is no mystery. When the financial markets eventually succumb to a “risk-off” selling panic, the corporate bond market will gap down violently. As one astute analyst put it:

“Everyone is hoping to be first through the exit,” said Matt King, global head of credit strategy at Citigroup in London. “By definition, that’s not possible.”

Stated differently, the Fed’s explicit campaign to force grandpa out of CDs and into corporate bond funds has caused a vast mis-pricing of liquidity. In a healthy free market, bond fund yields would carry a significant discount for illiquidity, and issuers of riskier corporate credits would face far higher yield spreads vs. the 10-year treasury benchmark.

So once again, the serial bubble machine in the Eccles Building has generated a huge unnatural market deformation that is inherently unstable and increasingly fragile. When the break comes, years worth of “extra” yield will be wiped-out in a traumatic drop in bond prices caused by a panic at the exit ramp.

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Aug 06

- How Economies Collapse: Systemic Friction and Debt Are Self-Liquidating (OfTwoMinds, Aug 4, 2014):

Paying for unproductive friction with borrowed money has generated the illusion that free to me is actually free–it isn’t.

We will discover, to our detriment, that friction and debt are both self-liquidating:that is, they bring about their own liquidation via systemic collapse.

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Aug 05

- Argentina – the Economic Backdrop to the Default (Acting Man, Aug 4, 2014):

The Default is a Minor Problem – Argentina’s Real Problem is Something Else Entirely

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Jul 31

Related info:

- Clintonians Join Vulture Flock Over Argentina

- Argentina: 1 Week Left Until ‘D’efault-Day (ZeroHedge, July 22, 2014)


- Argentina Defaults (ZeroHedge, July 30, 2014):

It’s all over but the crying: having explained Argentina’s position (i.e. not giving to so-called vulture funds), Economy Minister Kicilloff explains:

  • *KICILLOF SAYS HEDGE FUNDS NOT WILLING TO GIVE DELAY ON RULING
  • *KICILLOF SAYS HARD TO BELIEVE ARGENTINA IN DEFAULT IF HAS FUNDS
  • *KICILLOF SAYS ARGENTINA CAN’T COMPLY WITH COURT RULING
  • *HOLDOUTS DIDN’T ACCEPT ARGENTINE OFFER: KICILLOF

As Bloomberg notes, by defaulting today, Argentina may trigger bondholder claims of as much as $29 billion — equal to all its foreign-currency reserves. Just remember that the last 2 days have seen ‘smart money’ buy Argentine bonds and stocks to all-time record highs. Continue reading »

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Jul 27

Vulture

- Clintonians Join Vulture Flock Over Argentina (Truthdig, July 24, 2014):

It is no surprise that right-wing Republican and hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer should be trying to wring hundreds of millions of dollars out of Argentina for a debt that Buenos Aires doesn’t really owe him. He screwed tens of millions of dollars out of poverty-stricken Peru and the Republic of Congo using the same financial sleight of hand. What may surprise people, however, is that key leaders in the administration of former President Bill Clinton are helping him do it.

Singer, who owns Elliot Management, a $17 billion hedge fund, is the leading “vulture investor”—a financial speculator who buys up the bonds of debt strapped nations for pennies on the dollar and then demands payment in full. When Argentina defaulted on its foreign debt in 2001, Singer moved in and bought up $48 million in bonds. He is now demanding that those bonds be paid at full-face value—$1.5 billion—plus interest and fees. It is a move that could derail Argentina’s long climb back into solvency, as well as undermine debt settlements worldwide. Continue reading »

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Jul 23

With 1 Week Left Until Argentina’s ‘D’efault-Day, Judge Blasts “Judgments Are Judgments” (ZeroHedge, July 22, 2014):

Day after day, headlines from Argentina implore Judge Griesa to do the “fair, responsible” thing and lift his judgment that holdouts get paid before current bondholders receive their payments… and day after day Argentina’s demands are met with silence or denials. Today, though, with 1 week left until Argentina must put up or shut up, Judge Griesa has come out swinging…

  • *U.S. JUDGE SAYS OF ARGENTINA RULINGS: ‘JUDGMENTS ARE JUDGMENTS
  • *ARGENTINA’S ‘INCENDIARY` RHETORIC `UNFORTUNATE,’ JUDGE SAYS
  • *U.S. JUDGE URGES ‘SENSIBLE STEPS’ TO AVOID ARGENTINA DEFAULT

While CDS spreads have surged once again, bonds trade with default probabilities around only 50% which, according to Jefferies “are expensive on underestimating the risk of default.” Continue reading »

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Jul 21

- First Detroit, Now Flint Warns Bankruptcy “Train Is Headed For The Cliff” (ZeroHedge, July 19, 2014):

Flint may be Michigan’s second city to plunge into bankruptcy unless retirees accept cuts in health benefits that threaten to unravel a balanced budget. As Crain’s Detroit reports, Emergency Manager Darnell Earley (Flint’s third emergency leader since it was placed under state control in 2011) warned “If we have no ability to mitigate the cost of retiree health care, that’s going to make it very difficult for the city to remain financially stable over the next few years.” As Eric Scorsone notes, “Flint’s at the forefront, but a lot of cities are on the same train, and that train is headed for the cliff.”

As Crains Detroit reports,

As Detroit draws worldwide attention for its record $18 billion bankruptcy, Flint demonstrates the plight of U.S. cities where unfunded post-retirement costs rival or exceed pension liabilities. In Michigan alone in 2011, municipalities had nearly $13 billion in health-care liabilities for retirees, compared with about $3 billion for pensions. Flint is among 17 cities and school districts under some form of state control. Continue reading »

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Jul 18

From the article:

“Actually, the main reason why a deluge of defaults is inevitable, whether Beijing likes it or not, is that as we will report shortly, far from enaging in any deleveraging or “tapering” of credit injections, in the first quarter, Chinese banks saw the biggest increase in their assets in history! And since the bulk of these are in the form of loans going to already insolvent and materially impaired business, all China is doing now is throwing trillions in good money after bad. Which also means that in deciding to delay the Minsky unwind if only by a few months, China has just assured that when the collapse finally comes, it will be that much more acute.”


Second Chinese Bond Default On Deck (ZeroHedge, July 17, 2014):

It seems like it was only yesterday when the first official Chinese corporate default in history (there have been many other ones in the past but all were quickly masked by the government to avoid a panic), Chaori Solar, entered the history books. Now it’s time for default number in the country’s onshore bond market as Huatong Road & Bridge Group, a company whose businesses includ bridge and highway construction, real estate, coal, eco-friendly construction materials and agriculture-related projects, based in the northern province of Shanxi, said it may miss a 400 million yuan ($64.5 million) note payment due July 23, according to a statement to the Shanghai Clearing House yesterday.

Continue reading »

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Jul 16

- Why We’re Doomed: Interest and Debt (Washington’s Blog, July 15, 2014):

Even if the economy were growing at a faster pace, it wouldn’t come close to offsetting the interest payments on our ever-expanding debt.

If you want to know why the Status Quo is unsustainable, just look at interest and debt. These are not difficult to understand: debt is a loan that must be paid back or discharged/written off and the loss absorbed by the lender. Interest is paid on the debt to compensate the owner of the money for the risk of loaning it to a borrower.

It’s easy to see what’s happening with debt and the real economy (as measured by GDP, gross domestic product): debt is skyrocketing while real growth is stagnant. Put another way–we have to create a ton of debt to get a pound of growth.

There is no other way to interpret this chart.

debt-GDP
source: Acting Man

The Status Quo has only survived this crushing expansion of debt by dropping interest rates to historic lows. This is a chart of the yield on the 10-year Treasury bond, which reflects the extraordinary decline in interest rates over the past two decades. Continue reading »

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Jul 15

Prepare for collapse.


bis-bank-for-international-settlements-basel-switzerland

- The Head Of ‘The Central Bank Of The World’ Warns That Another Great Financial Crisis May Be Coming (Economic Collapse, July 13, 2014):

Most people have never heard of Jaime Caruana even though he is the head of an immensely powerful organization.  He has been serving as the General Manager of the Bank for International Settlements since 2009, and he will continue in that role until 2017.  The Bank for International Settlements is a rather boring name, and very few people realize that it is at the very core of our centrally-planned global financial system.  So when Jaime Caruana speaks, people should listen.  And the fact that he recently warned that the global financial system is currently “more fragile” in many ways than it was just prior to the collapse of Lehman Brothers should set off all sorts of alarm bells.  Speaking of the financial markets, Caruana ominously declared that “it is hard to avoid the sense of a puzzling disconnect between the markets’ buoyancy and underlying economic developments globally” and he noted that “markets can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent”.  In other words, he is saying what I have been saying for so long.  The behavior of the financial markets has become completely divorced from economic reality, and at some point there is going to be a massive correction.

So why would the head of ‘the central bank of the world’ choose this moment to issue such a chilling warning? Continue reading »

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Jul 14

Hmmh.

Alex Jones now – like Obama – using the latest state of  the art MASS HYPNOSIS techniques of Dr. Milton Erickson, M.D. ?

Start listening from 12:50 into the video …

“Now is the time to …”

- PDF: Obama’s_Use_of_Hidden_Hypnosis_techniques_in_His_Speeches:

Elementary pacing examples from Obama include, “now is the time”, and “as I stand here before you.”

These statements are undeniably true in the simplest terms and commonly used parts of his pacing techniques, because of course now is the time, and if he is there speaking, of course he is standing before us.

These are things the hypnotist says that are verifiably true, and used to lower our critical factor defenses to allow implantation of subconscious messages.



Added: Jul 12, 2014

Related info:

- 70% Devaluation Of The US Dollar Coming – We Are Headed For A Crisis Of Biblical Proportions – IMF Christine Lagarde’s Warning! (Video)

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Jul 13

From the article:

“It is just amazing who disconnected government are from the reality of the economy. Everything is geared to move toward the confiscation of wealth not reforming the system. These people are just brain-dead.”


Bremen-buergerschaft

- German Municipals In Trouble (Armstrong Economics, July 10, 2014):

Part of our job is monitoring everything everywhere. We are gathering data om whatever moves on a global basis. I have stated numerous times, it is IMPOSSIBLE to forecast a single market in isolation because the wildcard comes from contagions set in motion elsewhere. It is like sunning on the beach and there is a tidal wave coming because of an earthquake you didn’t know happened. Unless you monitor the world, you cannot even forecast the weather for tomorrow. It would all be just dumb-luck and chance.

I have been warning that about 50% of the municipal governments in Germany are on the verge of bankruptcy. Continue reading »

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Jul 13

- “Waiting For Armageddon” – Say It Isn’t So? (Zerohedge, July 11, 2014):

Brent Johnson, of Santiago Capital, provides a brief but broad overview of the state of the state in the world’s precious metals markets (and monetary policy implications). Often accused of “waiting for Armageddon”, Johnson is quick to note that he would love to be wrong… “If I thought it possible to carry out the next 40 years the same as the last – by sticking to the status quo – I’d do it.” But it’s not… and no matter how many “say it isn’t so” you hear from the mainstream, it is inevitable (when not if). Simply put, he warns, if you do have to have capital markets exposure – make sure you have insurance – you need it now more than ever.

Gold is the best insurance....

Full presentation below…

Watch the presentation HERE.

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Jul 12

Wile_E_Coyote-Dont_Look_Down

CEO Of Europe’s Largest Insurer Pops The Utopia Bubble: “Nothing Is Solved And Everybody Knows It” (ZeroHedge, July 11, 2014):

It’s one thing for a tinfoil fringe blog to repeat, month after month, that nothing in Europe has been fixed, that Draghi’s disastrous policies are merely concentraing and stockpiling even more unresolved problems – for now ignored courtesy of the gentle sprinkle of ZIRP, or rather NIRP “fairy dust” – and that just like Portugal showed panic can grip the entire continent literally overnight because everyone knows this. It is something entirely different for the CEO of Europe’s largest insurer to make the same statement.

From Bloomberg:

When asking Allianz SE’s chief investment officer about the euro area’s sovereign debt woes, be prepared for an emphatic response.

The fundamental problems are not solved and everybody knows it,” Maximilian Zimmerer said at Bloomberg LP’s London office. The “euro crisis is not over,” he said.

While extraordinary stimulus from the European Central Bank has encouraged investors to pile into the region’s government bonds this year, that’s not a sufficient remedy for Zimmerer, who oversees 556 billion euros ($757 billion) at Europe’s largest insurer. Countries are still building up their debt piles, and that’s storing up trouble for the future, he said.

Continue reading »

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Jul 10

Portugal’s Largest Bank Misses Bond Payment; Bonds Collapse (ZeroHedge, July 9, 2014):

Brussels, we have a problem. As we warned 6 weeks ago, Espirito Santo International SA – is in a “serious financial condition” according to a central bank driven external audit by KPMG identified “irregularities in its accounts.” Sure enough, the ‘ponzi-like’ maneuvers have left the bank unable to pay its bonds as Bloomberg reports bonds plunged to record lows after a parent company delayed payments on short-term notes. More importantly, given the divisively dependent nature of the domestic sovereign bond market (and hence the health of the EU) and its banking system, it is noteworthy that Portuguese bond risk has surged to 4 month highs with the biggest 2-day spike in a year. As one analyst noted, “The bigger question is whether the government will have to get involved,” leaving the EU taxpayer on the hook once again (for fear of M.A.D. threats) as most critically, it “will have to step in to prevent systemic repercussions?

20140709_ESP

As Bloomberg reports,

Banco Espirito Santo has been “adequately isolated” by the Bank of Portugal from the financial problems, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Luis Marques Guedes said on July 3. The bank was the only one of the three biggest publicly traded Portuguese lenders that didn’t request state aid after the country received a European Union-led bailout in May 2011. Continue reading »

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