ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Aug 09 14:29

Iraq to Stop Trading With Iran in US Dollars Due to Sanctions - Gov't Spokesman

Iraq will have to stop using the US dollar in its financial transactions with Iran over Washington's sanctions against Tehran, Iraqi government spokesman Saad al-Hadithi told Sputnik on Thursday.

"The sanctions will influence, first of all, money transfers and banking operations in the US dollar. The sides will not use the US dollar," al-Hadithi said, adding that the move would result in a decline in trade between the two countries and thus affect the consumers.

He stressed that the Iraqi government would try to find " a new mechanism" in order to support trade relations with Iran.

"In any case, the government will seek to solve all the problems related to this issue, it will look for corresponding mechanisms to neutralize the [sanctions'] influence on the Iraqi market and also prevent the damage caused to the Iraqi citizens' interests," al-Hadithi said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Does that mean, now, that Iraqi oil will be priced in other currencies rather than US dollars?!?

Aug 09 13:55

Lord Rothschild: The New World Order Is At Risk

Over the past three years, an unexpected voice of caution has emerged from one of the most legendary families in finance: Lord Jacob Rothschild.

Readers may recall that as part of the RIT Capital Partners 2014 annual report commentary, the scion of Rothschild family warned that "the geopolitical situation is most dangerous since WWII." One year later, Jacob Rothschild again warned about the outcome of "what is surely the greatest experiment in monetary policy in the history of the world", and then again in August 2017 he cautioned that "share prices have in many cases risen to unprecedented levels at a time when economic growth is by no means assured."

Little did he know that they were only going to keep rising, but related to that, he also made another warning which the market has so far blissfully ignored:

The period of monetary accommodation may well be coming to an end. Geopolitical problems remain widespread and are proving increasingly difficult to resolve.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The global monetary system is in peril because people like Lord Rothschild have played with the system, so that it benefits the very few, rather than the many; and that the fundamentals of that have to be fixed.

Aug 09 11:43

The Most Desirable Cities in the U.S.

Aug 09 11:15

Why the Boomers Are Going Broke

Aug 09 10:52

The looming threat of a yuan depreciation

Aug 09 10:32

Russia threatens to ban sale of key rocket engines to US as row over 'obnoxious' sanctions intensifies

Russia has threatened to ban sales of a key rocket engine to the United States in response to new sanctions over the Skripal poisoning.

Sergei Ryabukhin, head of the budget committee in the upper house of parliament, called the measures announced by the state department late on Wednesday the “most obnoxious and cynical behaviour on the market” and said Russia has the means to respond if leader Vladimir Putin wishes to do so.

“The United States needs to finally understand that it's useless to fight with Russia, including with the help of sanctions,” he said.

He said Russia could in particular stop exports to the United States of the RD-180 rocket engine, which powers the first stage of the Atlas 5 rocket made by Boeing and Lockheed Martin.

Aug 09 10:27

India Folds: Top Refiner Buys US Oil To Partially Replace Iranian Crude

Indian Oil Corp, the biggest refiner in India, has purchased a total of 6 million barrels of U.S. crude oil for delivery between November and January, as it has started to look for a replacement of Iranian oil cargoes ahead of the U.S. sanctions on Iran’s oil exports returning in early November.

Aug 09 10:21

EU impotence against US sanctions on Iran expose bloc as bumbling old fool of international politics

The sight of European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker stumbling at the NATO summit in Brussels last month, when he had to be held up by others, is a powerful symbol of the EU’s status on the world stage.

Donald Trump’s decision to activate sanctions against European companies that trade with Iran, and the EU’s response to it, demonstrate that the 28-nation bloc is little but a bumbling old fool in international politics.

Aug 09 09:52

Royal commission: NAB charges dead people, attracts Hayne's wrath

NAB's practice of charging for services it never delivered has been identified as a possible breach of criminal and civil laws, following a bruising day at the Hayne royal commission where the bank admitted to charging dead people for financial advice.

The bank's wealth and superannuation businesses remained in the commission's cross-hairs for a third day with the former chairwoman of NAB's NULIS super trustee business Nicole Smith rejecting a claim the business was "hopelessly conflicted".

Aug 09 09:50

Bankrupt America: Bankruptcy Soars As The Country Grapples With An Unprecedented Debt Problem

America, you officially have a debt problem, and I am not just talking about the national debt. Consumer bankruptcies are surging, corporate debt has doubled since the last financial crisis, state and local government debt loads have never been higher, and the federal government has been adding more than a trillion dollars a year to the federal debt ever since Barack Obama entered the White House. We have been on the greatest debt binge in human history, and it has enabled us to enjoy our ridiculously high standard of living for far longer than we deserved. Many of us have been sounding the alarm about our debt problem for a very long time, but now even the mainstream news is freaking out about it. I have a feeling that they just want something else to hammer President Trump over the head with, but they are actually speaking the truth when they say that we are facing an unprecedented debt crisis.

Aug 09 09:15

Fort Knox Gold?

Corruption in government is universal, now and throughout history. Like living with gravity, we realize it exists and carry on because we must.

Fort Knox gold questions are like corruption and gravity. There are issues but we move on. Consider:

Aug 09 09:14

Rothschild worried about new world economic order

Jacob Rothschild has voiced concern about the global financial system that was established after WWII. The billionaire banker points to the US-China trade war and eurozone crisis as the key problems putting economic order at risk.
“In 9/11 and in the 2008 financial crisis, the powers of the world worked together with a common approach. Co-operation today is proving much more difficult. This puts at risk the post-war economic and security order,” Rothschild warned in his investment trust's half-year results commentary.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The Rothschild dynasty is heavily invested in a western-centric global economic order, but that is starting to falter as the world learns to get along with out the US and Europe.

Aug 09 09:03

Korybko: An EU-Africa Free Trade Agreement Is An Awful Idea

The German Development Minister’s proposal for what essentially amounts to a one-way EU-Africa free trade agreement is an awful idea that would trigger a massive outflow of transnational capital from the bloc, decimate its remaining middle class alongside its medium-sized economies, and accordingly provoke serious tensions between the newly impoverished European natives and the foreign migrants in their countries that they’ll have to more fiercely competing against for jobs.

Aug 09 08:45

Wells Fargo Admits 'Computer Glitch' May Have Contributed to 400 Foreclosures

If these are the scams and screw ups we know about, you have to wonder just how many haven't been exposed yet. At some point you have to wonder how this particular company is still in business, since this hasn't just been a few errant fuck ups. It has been a prolonged, active campaign of malice and incompetence, matched only by the company's fairly obvious disdain for its own customers. At this point, it's a company that's starting to make similarly-hated monoliths like Comcast look like valued corporate citizens, and any conversations about more severe penalties are well earned.

Aug 09 08:41

Facebook Now Wants Your Banking Data

Social media giant Facebook, which has been embroiled in privacy scandals lately now wants banks to give them your financial information in exchange for their users’ data. Not only have they asked for your nude photos to protect you, they are now asking you to trust them with your banking information.

Facebook has asked the larger United States banks to share detailed financial information about customers as it seeks to boost user engagement and enhance the Messenger app. According to The Wall Street Journal, Facebook increasingly seeks to be a platform where people buy and sell goods and services, in addition to connecting with friends. Over the past year, the social media giant has asked JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and U.S. Bancorp to discuss potential offerings it could host for bank customers on Facebook Messenger.

Aug 09 08:38

BEST ECONOMY EVER!

Aug 09 08:31

Trump Set To Seize Stake In China-Owned Building In Midtown Manhattan: Report

In what would mark an abrupt and serious escalation of the US-China trade and currency war - if true - is a report from the NY Post according to which the Trump administration, as part of a crackdown on certain US investments made by Chinese companies, is set to seize a majority stake in 850 Third Ave. The stake is owned by HNA, the reeling, quasi-insolvent Chinese conglomerate whose Chairman died in a freak accident in Italy one month ago, and its US partner in the building is desperate to save it.

Aug 09 08:28

DEFY TRUMP: EU orders firms to IGNORE America and carry on trading with Iran

RELATIONS between President Trump and the European Union collapsed to a new low after EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini urged business to ignore US sanctions and increase trade with Iran.

Aug 09 08:12

Oil market balance of power shifts

The shift in oil market power away from OPEC towards a bilateral relationship between Saudi Arabia and Russia is the culmination of structural changes in oil production over the last 20 years.

These shifts are deeply structural and have little to do with the personality or negotiating skills of individual oil ministers, which arguably attract far too much attention from commentators and journalists.

Most of these changes can be traced back for 20 years or more, though some of them have recently accelerated, such as the recent slump in output from Venezuela and Libya.

To the extent that production is an important component of market power, the very different fortunes of OPEC countries have significantly redistributed power within the organisation.

Aug 09 06:23

Is The Cyclical Momentum Over-priced?

Aug 08 17:17

Bankrupt America: Bankruptcy Soars As The Country Grapples With An Unprecedented Debt Problem

America, you officially have a debt problem, and I am not just talking about the national debt. Consumer bankruptcies are surging, corporate debt has doubled since the last financial crisis, state and local government debt loads have never been higher, and the federal government has been adding more than a trillion dollars a year to the federal debt ever since Barack Obama entered the White House. We have been on the greatest debt binge in human history, and it has enabled us to enjoy our ridiculously high standard of living for far longer than we deserved. Many of us have been sounding the alarm about our debt problem for a very long time, but now even the mainstream news is freaking out about it. I have a feeling that they just want something else to hammer President Trump over the head with, but they are actually speaking the truth when they say that we are facing an unprecedented debt crisis.

Aug 08 14:43

Historic Government Spending Spree Underway…

A combination of factors will see federal agencies trying to spend as much as 40 percent of their budgets in the final two months of the fiscal year.

Aug 08 10:55

No Peace In Strengthening Iran Sanctions

President Trump is out of options. So are his main vectors of information, the Israeli Firsters in his cabinet and family. Israel, the U.S. and Saudi Arabia have lost the Syrian War and the ramifications of that are immense.

Because by losing this war the U.S. has been revealed as a paper tiger incapable of imposing its will on a world which is rapidly recoiling from its dominance.

Syria was the first time someone stood up and said, “No more.” Putin’s dramatic intervention in Syria was supported by all the same people in Trump’s crosshairs today: China, Iran and Hezbollah. Eventually, Turkey realized the U.S. could not be trusted, so they are targeted for economic destruction as well.

So, today’s impositions of new sanctions on Iran, the same playbook that Trump used against North Korea, is the only logical step on the path to the U.S. leaving the region.

Yes, you heard me, leaving the region.

Aug 08 10:54

Trump To Slap $16 Billion In New Tariffs On Chinese Imports Starting August 23

Completing the latest round of tariffs pledged against China, the US Trade Representative announced on Tuesday (after the close of course) it will impose 25% tariffs on $16 billion-worth of Chinese imports starting August 23. The new round of tariffs completes Trump's previously disclosed threat to impose $50 billion of import taxes on Chinese goods. The first $34 billion-worth went into effect on July 6th.

According to the USTR statement, customs will collect duties on 279 product lines, down from 284 items on the initial list; as Bloomberg notes, this will be the second time the U.S. slaps duties on Chinese goods in about the past month, overruling complaints by American companies that such moves will raise business costs, tax US consumers and raise prices.

On July 6, the U.S. levied 25% duties on $34 billion in Chinese goods prompting swift in-kind retaliation from Beijing.

Aug 08 10:53

Big Plans For Jeddah Tower Spark "Skyscraper Alert" For Looming Economic Crisis

In a 2005 article I first explained how otherwise unrelated events — skyscrapers and business cycles — are connected. Of course skyscraper construction does not actually cause business cycles and economic crises. Both phenomenons are caused by monetary expansion and artificially low interest rates.

On January 1, 2016, I published a “skyscraper alert.” A skyscraper alert occurs when a new world record-setting skyscraper project is underway and highly likely to be completed. At that time, media reports indicated that the construction project was fully financed. At the time I noted:

Above ground construction on the long-delayed Jeddah Tower started in September 2014, but there was considerable doubt that the financing of the one-kilometer (3,280.84 feet) tower could be obtained, given the shaky financial conditions in Saudi Arabia.

Aug 08 10:41

Homebase plans to close 60 stores threatening more than 1,000 jobs, say reports

Homebase is set to announce plans to close 60 stores next week, threatening about 1,000 jobs, Sky News has reported.

Hilco Capital, the restructuring specialist that bought the struggling retailer for £1, declined to comment.

Homebase announced in June that it would cut 300 jobs at its Milton Keynes head office and rumours have been circulating that store closures are imminent.

Aug 08 10:29

Survey: 1/3 of married couples fight over cash monthly

Research has found that 64% of Americans know their partner’s bank passwords, but more recent data shows that money can be a source of trouble for those who are married. In fact, new research from TD Bank reveals that one-third of couples who’ve tied the knot fight over cash “at least once a month.”

While retirement-related worries were the worst financial issue at 18%, “not being able to provide for their families” wasn’t far behind at 14%. However, what’s even more alarming is that 34% surveyed said that “living paycheck-to-paycheck” is the biggest thing getting in the way of achieving what they want financially.

Aug 08 09:54

Are there too many restaurants in Boston and not enough diners?

It was the closing that sent chills down the spine of the Boston restaurant industry: Les Sablons in Harvard Square shuttered last week after just over a year in business.

Playing in a notoriously tough game, restaurants close all the time. But this one involved Garrett Harker, whose Midas touch turned Island Creek Oyster Bar, Row 34, and Eastern Standard into gastronomic gold.

The unappetizing truth is that Les Sablons is just the latest in a recent string of high-profile restaurant closings by experienced operators who called it quits after a relatively short run. Other casualties include Michael Schlow’s Doretta Taverna & Raw Bar and Matt Jennings’s Townsman.

Aug 08 08:52

Warner Music Cashes Out Its Entire Spotify Stake — Totaling $504 Million

Warner Music Group is awash in cash after a flowing third quarter — thanks largely to a complete liquidation of its Spotify shares.

Aug 08 08:10

A Russian-American Alliance vs China Is an Absurd Proposition. The US Is a Declining Power With Little to Offer

The hostile American market is of no importance to Russia next to the opportunities offered by the booming Middle Kingdom

Aug 08 08:04

Elon Musk Turns U.S. Capital Markets Into A Complete Farce

“Nobody, when they’re looking at a privatization, dangles this way and does this sort of teasing dance of choreography. Somebody only does this when they are trying to distract us with a shiny new thing…There’s a lot of problems here. He can’t afford to build the new factory that he says he wants to build. This is a distracting strategy like attacking the press”

Aug 08 07:48

Europe Seeking to Boost Ties With Russia, Turkey Apart From the US – Analysts

Turkey is seeking to host a new Syria summit without the US, which indicates the beginning of the end of Washington's influence in Syria, Turkish analysts told Sputnik, further suggesting that France and Germany are also interested in expanding ties with Russia and Turkey.

The upcoming Istanbul summit on the Syrian crisis will leave Washington out in the cold, Turkish analysts told Sputnik Turkey.

According to Can Unver, a Turkish security analyst, the summit that will take place on September 7 will become "one of the most important diplomatic and political steps of the last period of time, carried out without the participation of the United States."

Aug 08 07:46

EU Counts Losses as Russia Marks 4th Anniversary of Embargo on Western Food

Tuesday marks the fourth anniversary of the Russian import ban on certain Western products in response to Ukraine-related sanctions, as some EU countries continue to struggle to change the anti-Russia policy to revive trade.

On August 7, 2014, Russia imposed a food embargo on countries that adopted sanctions against Moscow over Crimea's reunification with Russia and alleged interference in the conflict in Ukraine. The food embargo banned the imports of meat, fish and seafood, vegetables, fruit and dairy products from the EU countries, the United States and several other states. The ban has recently been prolonged until the end of 2019.

Aug 08 05:23

How Good Is The Trump Economy?

Let's start with the obvious:

1.Trump's campaign promises were absurd. He said he'd pay off the national debt in 8 years. When asked how, he replied "trade". Just two days ago, he again claimed that tariffs were helping to pay off the national debt. The truth is that Trump is conducting the most irresponsible fiscal policy in all of American history. Because neither the Dems or the GOP are willing to cut spending, Trump's deficit spending will lead to much higher taxes and slower growth in the future. But that's not Trump's problem.
2.Trump's claim that he reduced the unemployment rate from somewhere around 20% or 40% to 4%, almost overnight, doesn't even pass the laugh test.
3.Trump is making the trade deficit "worse", the exact opposite of his promise.
4.Job growth is no better than under Obama.
5.He promised 4% RGDP growth, we have 2.7% so far.

So if the economy was as awful under Obama as he claimed during the campaign, then it's still very bad. However, if we look past Trump's silly promises, there is some evidence of economic improvement:

>>>

Aug 08 04:20

Millions drop off food stamps

Aug 07 12:23

'PetroYuan' Futures Surge Limit-Up To Record High As US Sanctions Hit Iran

China's 'petroyuan' oil futures contract spiked tonight by 5% (their daily limit) to a new record high, coinciding with the re-imposition of US sanctions on Iran.

The first of two rounds of US sanctions kicked in at 12:01 am (0431 GMT), targeting Iran's access to US banknotes and key industries, including cars and carpets.

This is the biggest daily move in China's oil futures since the contract's inception in March to a new high of CNY537.2...

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is one of the moments President Trump may well have remembered the old adage, "Be careful what you wish for."

Aug 07 12:11

Goldman Warns Turkish Banks Will Be Wiped Out If Lira Hits 7.1

After its worst day in 10 years, the Turkish Lira's early rebound is already starting to fade amid denied rumors of US officials predicting Lira's demise, a record high yield at its bond auction, and Goldman warning of the collapse of Turkey's financial system.

With tensions remaining high, the U.S. Embassy in Turkey has denied news in Turkish media that a U.S. official predicted the lira would weaken to 7 per dollar, calling the claim an entirely baseless "lie." In two tweets, the Embassy said:

"Despite current tensions, the United States continues to be a solid friend and ally of Turkey. Our countries have a vibrant economic relationship."

"For this reason, it is unfortunate and disturbing that an American official, who estimates that the U.S. dollar will be $7 TL, is completely unfounded and irresponsible in the Turkish media. It's a fabricated and baseless lie."

Aug 07 12:09

Blowback: UniCredit Becomes First Major Corporation To Sever Ties With Facebook Over Ethics

Facebook has lost a major advertiser, UniCredit SpA, which has severed all ties alleging that the social media giant hasn't acted ethically, reports Bloomberg - which notes that "other large companies" may follow suit.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Good on UniCredit, and may many other large advertisers on Facebook follow suit!!

Aug 07 12:07

It's Not Trade War Or A Market Drop That Is Keeping Credit Investors Up At Night

Fast forward to today, when in the latest survey of European credit investors conducted by BofA's Barnaby Martin, the strategist observes that concerns about the market's ever shrinking liquidity have become the primary source of worry for professional investors, and as Martin writes, "it's not trade wars or an equity market correction that look to be keeping credit investors up at night." Instead, it is the fear of a "pervasive rush for the exit at some point in the future."

In other words, what is keeping bond traders up at night is the fear that when the selling begins, there will simply not be enough liquidity to absorb it all.

What is just as surprising, is that just last month the top investor concern was "Bubbles in Credit", i.e. excess liquidity, which one month later has now morphed into "Liquidity Vanishing", which according to Bank of America is the first time in 3 years that this has emerged as the chief concern.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Now, please, if you haven't already done this, please think about having some physical metals under your own control. Do not trust banks with a safe deposit box; these can be opened, and the goods sold, by the US government for any declared national emergency. This has been backed up by a couple of blogs, although banks, of course, do not want you to know that this is possible.

Homeland Security can Seize Safe Deposit Boxes

US Department of Homeland Security has told banks in writing that it may inspect safe deposit boxes without warrant, and seize any gold, silver, guns, or other valuables it may find inside.

The article goes on to state: :According to in-house memos now circulating, the DHS has issued orders to banks across America which announce to them that “under the Patriot Act” the DHS has the absolute right to seize, without any warrant whatsoever, any and all customer bank accounts, to make “periodic and unannounced” visits to any bank to open and inspect the contents of “selected safe deposit boxes.”
Further, the DHS “shall, at the discretion of the agent supervising the search, remove, photograph or seize as evidence” any of the following items “bar gold, gold coins, firearms of any kind unless manufactured prior to 1878, documents such as passports or foreign bank account records, pornography or any material that, in the opinion of the agent, shall be deemed of to be of a contraband nature.”
DHS memos also state that banks are informed that any bank employee, on any level, that releases “improper” “classified DHS Security information” to any member of the public, to include the customers whose boxes have been clandestinely opened and inspected and “any other party, to include members of the media” and further “that the posting of any such information on the internet will be grounds for the immediate termination of the said employee or employees and their prosecution under the Patriot Act.” Safety deposit box holders and depositors are not given advanced notice when failed banks shut their doors."

Aug 07 11:56

Gold: Have The Chinese Changed The Way They Look At It?

But I do believe the Chinese are managing the price of gold priced in CNY. They have in essence provided a floor at which they are willing to accumulate gold. They don’t bother selling it when it rises above that level, but when the gold price descends into their buy zone, they are there with stacks of blues.

So why is the price of gold going down recently? Well, if we assume that China is one of the biggest buyers of gold, when their currency depreciates, their bid for gold priced in US dollars falls.

The price of gold has not been pegged in CNY, it is merely being bought in that currency. The Chinese have fundamentally changed the way they look at gold. Instead of pricing it in US dollars, they are pricing it in CNY. And they are bid. For size.

Aug 07 11:53

US Abandons Oil Sanctions To Avoid Owning Venezuela's Collapse

Industry collapse
The downfall of Venezuela’s chief industry, coupled with International Monetary Fund predictions that inflation in the country will skyrocket to 1 million percent by the end of this year, have created an unusual scenario, in which Maduro may even welcome US sanctions on its oil sector. As Venezuela’s economy continues to unravel, leading to surging prices and rampant hunger, Maduro could try to pin the blame on sanctions.

“If you break it, you buy it,” said George David Banks, a former international energy and environment adviser to President Trump. “The White House doesn’t want to own this crisis.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Hey, but a drone strike nearly killing President Maduro is PERFECTLY OK!!!"
-Official White Horse Souse.

Aug 07 11:41

Market Stunned After Musk Tweets Intention To Take Tesla Private

Update 5: Tesla stock was finally halted at 2:08PM, well over an hour after Musk first tweeted:

*TRADING HALTED:(TSLA) Halt News Pending
Update 4: Musk now reveals that he plans to use a "SPV" for the going private transaction:

Gali
@Gfilche
· 1h
Replying to @elonmusk
Noooooo!!!! Still processing what this means, but would be sad to see all the investors who've been w/ $TSLA miss out on the upside over the next few years. Although if this helps the mission & Elon thinks it's smart, I understand and fully support

Elon Musk
?
@elonmusk
My hope is *all* current investors remain with Tesla even if we’re private. Would create special purpose fund enabling anyone to stay with Tesla. Already do this with Fidelity’s SpaceX investment.

Update 3: Bloomberg commentator Sebastian Boyd is not buying it for a very simple reason: math (although meth would make it more palatable):

Some Tesla Math

Aug 07 11:35

Apple could be used as a 'bargaining chip' in the trade war, Chinese state media warns

Chinese state media: Apple could be used as a 'bargaining chip' in the trade war
1 Hour Ago | 01:05
Apple has benefited from cheap labor and a strong supply chain in China and needs to share more of its profit with the Chinese people or face "anger and nationalist sentiment" amid the ongoing trade war, an article in the state-backed People's Daily warned Tuesday. The article originally appeared in another state-backed publication, Global Times, last week.

The opinion piece highlights how Apple made $9.6 billion in revenues in China in the June quarter, which helped the U.S. giant to recently hit a $1 trillion valuation.

But the continuing trade war between the U.S. and China could leave Apple and other U.S. firms vulnerable as "bargaining chips" for Beijing, according to the article.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The "defy" has been hurled by the Chinese government; it will be interesting to see how President Trump responds.

Aug 07 10:49

Will The Trump Administration Attack Iran?

For the moment, it appears that the Trump administration strategy—if such a term can be applied to a government headed by Donald Trump—is to step up economic pressure and propaganda against Iran, while reaching out to internal opponents of the regime and perhaps providing covert support at some point, if it is not doing so already. Even short of direct military action, this approach is both incoherent and dangerous. Squeezing Iran’s economy is likely to raise gas prices in the United States, and the Trump administration’s trade war against the very countries it needs to help isolate Iran economically does not offer great hopes for success on that front. But when economic pressure and indirect action don’t have the desired effect, what comes next?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Hartung missed one very critical factor, in an otherwise excellent reporting job; and that is the enormous pressure Israel's Netanyahu and Sheldon Adelson are placing on President Trump to go to war against Iran, and that is a momentous factor here, as was their cheer-leading to destroy Iraq, and advocate for its partition.

Aug 07 10:30

The War Before the Iran War

Tucker Carlson has impeccable conservative credentials.

When Tucker talks, the president listens.

That’s why his commentary last week on Iran is so important.

Carlson initially supported the Iraq War but then became disenchanted about a year later, along with many others who’d ordered a cakewalk and received a quagmire instead. Now Carlson is warning Trump not to go down the same road as George W. Bush.

"If there’s one thing that Washington loves more than open borders and fat lobbying contracts, it’s pointless wars half a world away. Contractors get rich. Neocon intellectuals feel powerful. Bill Kristol, Max Boot, and Nancy Pelosi agree on one thing: War is good as long as the war does not help the United States. …

We are moving toward, however slowly, some kind of confrontation with Iran. And that should worry everybody, but it should especially be of concern to anyone who supported the president.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Hairy, indeed.

And what I am predicting, given President Trump's "drop dead date" past which he has commanded the world to no longer buy Iranian crude, is that some action by the US and Israel is going to happen some time on, or right after that date, 4 November, just two days before the US US mid-term elections.

Such a war may well be an unmitigated disaster for the US military, as at this moment in its history, it does not have the weaponry; the troop strength; the money, or the manufacturing to insure a positive outcome here; and that goes double strength, if Russia decides to join the fray on Iran's side.

Aug 07 10:07

DOLLAR DICTATORSHIP THE FOUNDATION OF AMERICAN EMPIRE - IRAN'S AHMADINEJAD

Former two-term Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says the dollar is one of the major pillars of US dominance over global finance and trade. He has called for change in the current world order.

“Things need to change, current orders should be reordered,” the former leader of the Islamic Republic tweeted on Monday, hours before the first round of the US sanctions came into effect.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hate it when I guy I don't particularly like, is absolutely, undeniably correct in his assessment.

But dedollarization is continuing apace, with Russia and China using domestic currencies in place of the dollar, and China softening its currency in order to make it a more attractive medium of trade.

Aug 07 10:02

EU determined to protect companies from US sanctions on Iran

The European Union, France, Britain and Germany announced on Monday their commitment to protecting European companies doing legitimate business with Iran from future sanctions.

The EU foreign ministers and the three countries expressed in a joint statement regret for the United States withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear agreement signed with Iran, and the activation of sanctions against it.

“We are determined to protect European companies conducting legitimate business activities with Iran under the laws of the European Union and the UN Security Council resolution”.

The statement stressed that the updated EU laws, to protect European companies that may be affected by the sanctions will come into effect on Tuesday.

Aug 07 09:56

"Their Wealth Has Vanished": Baby Boomers File For Bankruptcy In Droves

An alarming number of older Americans are being forced into bankruptcy, as the rate of people 65 and older who have filed has never been higher - at three times what it was in 1991, while the rate of bankruptcies among Americans age 65 and older has more than doubled, according to a new study by the The Bankruptcy Project.

Older Americans are increasingly likely to file consumer bankruptcy, and their representation among those in bankruptcy has never been higher. Using data from the Consumer Bankruptcy Project, we find more than a two-fold increase in the rate at which older Americans (age 65 and over) file for bankruptcy and an almost five-fold increase in the percentage of older persons in the U.S. bankruptcy system. The magnitude of growth in older Americans in bankruptcy is so large that the broader trend of an aging U.S. population can explain only a small portion of the effect.

Aug 07 09:50

America's '1%' Hasn't Controlled This Much Wealth Since Before The Great Depression

The gap between the rich and the poor in America has ballooned over the last several decades.

In 2015, the top 1% of Americans made 26.3 times as much income as the bottom 99 percent - an increase from 2013, when they earned 25.3 times as much, according to a recent study released by the Economic Policy Institute, a left-leaning Washington, D.C. think tank.

Aug 07 09:35

Senators Urge Trump to Counter China’s ‘Debt-Trap’ Loans

A bipartisan group of senators is urging the Trump administration to block the International Monetary Fund from bailing out several underdeveloped nations victimized by predatory Chinese loans made through the Belt and Road Initiative infrastructure development plan.

"We write to express our concern over bailout requests to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) by countries who have accepted predatory Chinese infrastructure financing," the 16 senators stated in a letter sent last week to the secretaries of Treasury and State.

China's Belt and Road Initiative is a global infrastructure funding plan that Beijing is using to expand its power and influence around the world.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"If anyone is going to do death trap loans, it'll be the USA!!!!" -- Official White Horse Souse

Aug 07 09:05

MAJOR: China Ditches U.S Oil, Turns To Iran In Defiance Of Sanctions

One of China’s largest oil companies, Sinopec, has suspended imports of 300,000 barrels per month by the end of the year, a company source has revealed to major international media.

At the same time, reports have confirmed that a number of other Chinese oil and gas companies have also joined in on refusing to purchase US oil.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The practice of sanctioning every which way is isolating the US from the rest of the world both politically and economically.

Aug 07 08:53

Prepare for $90 oil after sanctions against Iran take effect – analyst

Looming US sanctions against Iran will likely hit Tehran’s oil sales abroad, and it could lead to a price spike in oil contracts.

The first round of renewed US sanctions will take effect on Tuesday with the harshest sanctions, potentially targeting Iran's oil industry, expected to return in early November.

"As we go more towards (the fourth quarter) … that's when we really see the risk of prices going well into the 80s and potentially even into the 90s but very critical is how much Iranian production we lose," Amrita Sen, chief oil analyst at Energy Aspects, told CNBC Monday.

Aug 07 08:51

EU Activates Blocking Measures as US Reimposes Sanctions Targeting Iran Economy

The US government announced earlier that it was reimposing two new waves of sanctions targeting several of Iran’s economic and industrial sectors, which prompted the EU to put countermeasures in motion.

US-Iranian tensions have heated up recently over Tehran boosting military exercises in the Persian Gulf and allegations that Iran has violently cracked down on unarmed citizens. In recent weeks, US President Donald Trump has sent mixed messages to the government in Tehran by claiming he was open to talks without preconditions just days after issuing existential threats.

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