ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Dec 01 11:32

Iron ore is in free-fall

Dec 01 11:23

Chicago’s New PlayStation Tax Shows How Greedy Politicians Can Be

By Brittany Hunter

“If it moves, tax it.” That’s government’s eternal motto, as Ronald Reagan quipped. To this, the city government of Chicago has added, “If it amuses, tax it.”

A few weeks ago, PlayStation 4 users in Chicago were shocked when they turned on their consoles and saw a message from Sony. The message informed users that as of November 14, 2018, they would be required to pay a 9 percent “amusement tax” for PlayStation subscriptions such as PlayStation Now, PlayStation Plus, PlayStation Music, and others...

Dec 01 10:33

Margin Debt and the Market: Down 6.25% MoM

Dec 01 10:24

Escaping the Global Banking Cartel - aantonop


Expanding on an observation from his last talk, Andreas asks why we talk so much about the cartels in drugs and oil, but rarely about one of the largest cartels in the world: banking. He analyses recent (unacknowledged) history with the 2008 financial crisis, the corrupt revolving door with regulators, how kleptocracy is destroying democracy, and why Bitcoin matters as an exit when voice is no longer an option.

Dec 01 10:23

Weighing The Evidence For A Year-End Rally

Dec 01 10:18

Putin ratifies interim agreement on EAEU-Iran free trade zone

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law ratifying a temporary agreement on formation of a free trade zone between the Eurasian Economic Union and Iran.

he relevant law, published on the official Internet portal of legal information, was ratified by the State Duma and the Federation Council (two houses of the Russian parliament) on November 15 and 23, respectively.

"To ratify the interim agreement on formation of a free trade zone between the Eurasian Economic Union and its member states, for one part, and the Islamic Republic of Iran, on the other part, signed in Astana on May 17, 2018," the document says.

The agreement signed in Astana on May 17, 2018 sets the main rules of trade between the EAEU and Iran most closely to those of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which Iran does not belong to

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This was an utterly brilliant move on Putin's part, as he is working as hard as he can, to keep the country of Iran in the best economic state possible, while making President Trump appear petulant and short-sited, courtesy of the United States' withdrawal from the P5+1 agreement.

Dec 01 09:51

BRICS nations call for cancellation of unilateral trade measures — Russian minister

The BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) nations share the opinion that all unilaterally imposed trade measures should be canceled, Russian Minister of Economic Development Maxim Oreshkin said on Friday.

"The position that has been declared is that all unilateral measures that have been adopted and used in the recent years, should be canceled. This is a common position of the BRICS nations," he told journalists at the G20 summit.

Dec 01 09:37

The Many Ways Governments Create Monopolies

By Mike Holly

Politicians tend to favor authoritarianism over capitalism and monopoly over competition. They have directly created monopolies (and oligopolies) in all major industrial sectors by imposing policies favoring preferred corporations and preferred special interests.

In 2017, University economists Jan De Loecker and Jan Eeckhout found monopolies behind nearly every economic problem...

Nov 30 17:28

This Is How The “Everything Bubble” Will End

Keep in mind, I’m not in the habit of making “doomsday” predictions. Simply put, the Fed has warped the economy far more drastically than it did in the 1920s, during the tech or housing bubbles, or during any other period in history. -- I expect the resulting stock market crash to be that much bigger.

Nov 30 17:14

3 Things That Happened Just Before The Crisis Of 2008 That Are Happening Again Right Now

Every single Fed rate hiking cycle in history has ended in a market crash and/or a recession, and this time won’t be any different. -- The Federal Reserve created the “boom” that we witnessed in recent years, but we must also hold them responsible for the “bust” that is about to happen.

Nov 30 17:07

Sweden Is on the Verge of Going Completely Cashless: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Many readers expressed dismay, shock, and revulsion at the very idea of having a chip implanted in their bodies, and I’m with you. But we’re witnessing something important here. We’re watching an alarming glimpse at the future. -- The endgame of complete control truly seems to be in sight as more and more Swedes go cashless.

Nov 30 12:59

You want growth? Here:

Nov 30 12:46

Weekend Reading: The Powell Put

Nov 30 12:34

Same patterns 123, 123, 12... ?

Nov 30 12:18

Heartbreaking moment hundreds of devastated GM workers gather in solemn PRAYER over the closure of their plant and loss of 15,000 jobs company-wide

General Motors workers held the prayer vigil outside the Lordstown, Ohio plant on Thursday afternoon.

It's among the five GM plants across North America to close next year
Emotional co-workers hugged each other and wiped away tears as they prayed
A Lordstown employee, Norman Perry, said workers were just trying to stay positive in the wake of the news earlier this week.

GM announced on Monday that it would shutter the five plants, stop building six low-selling passenger cars in North America and cut up to 15,000 jobs.

A Lordstown employee, Norman Perry, told Fox 8 that workers were just trying to stay positive in the wake of the news earlier this week.

'Everyone just wants to keep working right now and get through this. Christmas is coming, they want to enjoy Christmas,' he said.

'This is a time where we should be lifted up.

'We're just trying to lift spirits and that what all this (the vigil) is all about.'

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Workers in this country are expendable, and disposable. Corporations can do whatever they want in terms of layoffs, and do them with impunity, because their lawyers cannot be faulted for "restructuring"

And if GM fails again, it will be brought back to life, courtesy of tax funded bailouts, from which they can do precisely what they have done here, and with zero blame.

Nov 30 11:59

Mueller has tortured enough minnows and made enough noise but if he hasn’t got the goods to nail Trump the whale by now he should shut up shop and go home

Donald Trump has never made any secret that he enjoys doing business with Russians.

When I interviewed him for GQ magazine in 2008, he told me how he’d recently made a $60 million profit on a house in Florida that way.

Donald Trump has never made any secret that he enjoys doing business with Russians.

The fact remains that Mueller, so far as we know, has yet to prove Trump either colluded with the Russians to fix the election or had business activities with Russia that clouded his approach to dealing with Russia.

Nor do we know if Cohen has any actual evidence to implicate the President in wrongdoing.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Amen on this, Piers Morgan; amen!!

Nov 30 11:50

Tusk 'Sure' EU to Roll Over Sanctions Against Russia Over Kerch Row in December

The Kerch Strait incident took place on Sunday when three Ukrainian naval vessels, heading from the Black Sea to the Azov Sea, tried to pass through the strait without obtaining permission from Russia and thus illegally crossing the country's sea border.

European Council President Donald Tusk said on Friday he was sure that the EU leaders would roll out new sanctions against Russia due to Moscow's response to Ukraine's naval activity in the Kerch Strait.

READ MORE: NATO to Keep Monitoring Black Sea Following Ukraine's Kerch Strait Provocation

"The de-escalation in the Sea of Azov is a cause of a grave concern to us, and of course Russia's use of force against Ukrainian ships is totally unacceptable… Europe is united in its support of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. And this is why I am sure that the EU will roll over the sanctions against Russia in December," Tusk said at a press conference during G20 summit.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It is as simple as the Ukrainian sailors having crossed into Russia's sovereign marine territory; they were wrong, period, end of discussion.

Unfortunately, the US and its European allies have nasty habit of accusing Russia for things Russia never did, and ultimately using that as the pretext for war.

I would like to see all aggrieved parties come together to step back from the precipice here, and for Poroshenko to ultimately admit that his sailors were dead wrong here, and make amends. Of course, this will not happen, because Poroshenko is the US's and NATO's "picador" when it comes to relations with Russia. The last thing we need... is another world war.Ac

Nov 30 11:25

Buchanan: Is Putin The Provocateur In The Kerch Crisis?

Authored by Patrick Buchanan via The Unz Review,

On departure for the G-20 gathering in Buenos Aires, President Donald Trump canceled his planned weekend meeting with Vladimir Putin, citing as his reason the Russian military’s seizure and holding of three Ukrainian ships and 24 sailors.

But was Putin really the provocateur in Sunday’s naval clash outside Kerch Strait, the Black Sea gateway to the Sea of Azov?

Or was the provocateur Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko?

First, a bit of history.

In 2014, after the pro-Russian regime in Kiev was ousted in a coup, and a pro-NATO regime installed with U.S. backing, Putin detached and annexed Crimea, for centuries the home port of Russia’s Black Sea fleet.

With the return of Crimea, Russia now occupied both sides of Kerch Strait. And this year, Russia completed a 12-mile bridge over the strait and Putin drove the first truck across.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Pat Buchanan, you miss a very important point here, which needs repeating.

Russia did NOT annex Crimea.

After Poroshenko was installed as President in 2014, understanding that there would only be corruption now from the Ukrainian government in Kiev, the Crimean officials did two things.

First, they did a referendum with the Crimean people, to determine if they wanted to stay with the "new Ukraine", or slip away, and request a transfer of governance with Russia.

They overwhelmingly said that they wanted to petition the Russian Federation for acceptance into that Federation, and Russia accepted this.

There was utterly no annexation; just a referendum, followed by a petition to join the Russian Federation; nothing more, nothing less. Pat, please check your history, as I know that what I have said is the absolute truth of how this came down.

But you are absolutely correct, when you talk about this not being America's fight, and particularly right now.

Nov 30 11:03

Goldman: The "Most Likely" Outcome Of The Trump-Xi Dinner Is More Escalation

Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Donald Trump, each accompanied by senior officials (with uber China-hawk Peter Navarro present), will dine together Saturday on the sidelines of the G20 conclave in Argentina. Market participants are intensely focused on the leaders’ meeting as a potential inflection point in the escalating economic tensions between the two countries.

And while many have expressed hopes that at least some tentative thawing in relations will emerge as a result of tomorrow's meeting, Goldman Sachs disagrees, and in a Thursday note said that a continued escalation of the U.S.-China trade war would be the "most likely" outcome of the meeting.

In previewing the three possible outcomes of the Saturday dinner, Goldman writes that it sees three basic scenarios for what happens after this weekend.

Nov 30 10:55

“The Great Reset” Is Coming

Nov 30 10:43

Saudi Facing OPEC Mutiny As Members Object To "Problematic" US Influence

As US stocks seesaw with every conflicting trade-war related headline, investors are fixating on tomorrow night's dinner meeting between President Trump and President Xi with laser-like focus. But the Trump-Xi summit isn't the only meeting that could have broad repercussions for global markets, and though it has received much less attention in the press, the planned meetings between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman (along with the Russian and Saudi energy ministers) could dictate the course of global oil prices for the foreseeable future.

Looming over the Saudi-Russia talks are suspicions that Saudi Arabia has been accelerating production of oil beyond the cuts adopted by OPEC+ in November 2016 to placate President Trump - a conspiracy "theory" first highlighted by Zero Hedge weeks ago, which has finally won acknowledgment in the pages of the Wall Street Journal and other mainstream press.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Remember what I mentioned in my article today, about the meeting of Saudi Prince Bin Salman, and the Russian President Putin?!?

I have a very strong feeling, that I might well have been right!!

And again, there will be utterly nothing President Trump can do to unseal, or scotch the deal, where payment on the oil will most likely be in another denomination than that of the US dollar.

Nov 30 10:38

When Putin Met Bin Sally

In the annals of handshake photo-ops, we just may have a new winner (much to the delight of oil bulls who are looking at oil treading $50 and contemplating jumping out of the window).

Russian President Putin and Saudi Crown Prince bin Salman embrace and laugh at the G20 in Argentina.

Nothing but sheer joy, delight and friendship...

... but something is missing..

Meanwhile, earlier...

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I wouldn't put it past Putin to come up with an oil deal with Bin Salman, which completely negates the influence of the US dollar.

Nov 30 10:33

3 Things That Happened Just Before The 2008 Crisis Are Happening Again Right Now

Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog.

Real estate, oil and the employment numbers are all telling us the same thing, and that is really bad news for the U.S. economy. It really does appear that economic activity is starting to slow down significantly, but just like in 2008 those that are running things don’t want to admit the reality of what we are facing. Back then, Fed Chair Ben Bernanke insisted that the U.S. economy was not heading into a recession, and we later learned that a recession had already begun when he made that statement. And as you will see at the end of this article, current Fed Chair Jerome Powell says that he is “very happy” with how the U.S. economy is performing, but he shouldn’t be so thrilled.

f all of this sounds eerily similar to 2008, that is because it is eerily similar to what happened just before and during the last financial crisis.

Nov 30 10:29

Merkel Ally Suggests Blockading Russian Ships From All EU And US Ports

A close senior political ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Reuters on Friday that the European Union and the United States should consider banning all Russian ships that originate from the Sea of Avoz from entering EU and US ports until last Sunday's Kerch Strait crisis is resolved.

German conservative Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, who is said to be most likely to succeed Merkel as leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, told Reuters:

One answer might be, for example, to stop Russian ships coming from the region - from the Sea of ??Azov - from entering European or U.S. ports until this situation with Ukraine is resolved.

And turning her attention to US sanctions targeting Russia and Germany's less than eager willingness to go along, Reuters reports further:

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Forgive me, but has Kram-Karrenbauer gone absolutely stark raving, gepolitically insane?!?

Blockades are considered an act of war, just in case her European history is a little fuzzy, which it appears to be.

Russia was precisely within its rights to capture and hold the invading Ukrainian boats, courtesy of maritime law. But that this woman is even THINKING about a blockade, makes me very concerned about her true mental health.

Poroshenko has been screaming about a potential "Russian Invasion" ever since he took office in 2014.

Nov 30 10:06

TO GET BACK AT G.M., TRUMP THREATENS TO PUNISH ANY AMERICAN WHO BUYS AN ELECTRIC CAR

As you’ve probably heard by now, on Monday General Motors announced it would be cutting 15 percent of its salaried workforce and closing five North American factories. While C.E.O. Mary Barra said no single event prompted the cuts, some of the factors that clearly led to the retrenchment include a slowdown in new car sales, bets on smaller vehicles not panning out, and the president’s trade war, which has spiked the price of steel, and which G.M. warned in June would impact its profits and U.S. jobs. In short, the move was a logical decision that you might expect someone like Donald Trump, a self-described businessman who claims to know “more about” money, taxes, trading, banking, and the economy than anyone, to understand. But, of course, Trump is only a businessman in so much as he played one on TV—his real-life accomplishments are more along the lines of bankrupting a casino and receiving a lifetime allowance from his father, who had to bail him out on numerous occasions.

Nov 30 09:39

The Business Cycle & the Suicide Rate

Nov 30 08:44

Crisis in the Sea of Azov, Confronting Russia, “Dangerous Madness… The Risk of War is Real

Alessandro Bianchi: Let’s start from today’s crisis in the Sea of Azov. The European Union and NATO have given full support to Ukraine after the violation of Russian sovereignty by two Ukrainian vessels. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gave his full support to Poroshenko, who declared martial law. What does a country like Italy risk in continuing its accession to NATO?

Nov 30 08:24

A Savage ‘War To End All Wars,’ and a Failed Peace

Europe lost an entire generation, killed, maimed or forever psychologically broken by the war. Many Europeans lost faith in the snake oil of nationalism and turned away from the standard frameworks of monarchy or liberal democracy. Some found solace in socialism, whereas others doubled down on ultranationalism in the form of fascist leaders.

Despite 9 million battle deaths – a number unfathomable when the war began – WWI solved little and sowed the seeds for the European cataclysm of 1939-45. It is an uncomfortable truth, especially for the United States, a nation that tends to see itself as being at the center of the world; the US played mostly a late, and bit, part in the drama across the Atlantic.

Nov 30 08:18

Trump: Experts All Say US Troops Need to Stay in Afghanistan

With three US troops killed in Afghanistan earlier this week, President Trump was pressed on the matter of why, 17+ years in, the US military remains in the country. He told interviewers that “every expert that I have and speak to says if we don’t go there, they’re going to be fighting over here. And I’ve heard it over and over again.”

When Trump announced his escalation of the war last year, he said his first impulse was to pull out, but that the experts had assured him the war was still winnable. In recent months, officials have been very public about trying to convince Trump to stay in the war despite how poorly its going.

Trump’s claims that all the experts he’s hearing are telling him the same thing suggests his administration is limiting his access to dissenters. The war is plainly going disastrously, and it wouldn’t be hard to find people who would tell the president as much.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

We continue to fight this horrific war for the following reasons; to control the huge pipelines which chris-cross the country; the rights to develop the rare earth elements in Afghanistan; and to control the opium crops for CIA off the book operations.

And hey, if people (including our military) get killed in the way of making huge profits from all the above, they were simply just "collateral damage" and getting in the way of accomplishing what the Deep State wants to see happen here.

Nov 30 08:02

Debt, Death, and the US Empire

In a talk which garnered little attention, one of the Deep State’s prime operatives, National Security Advisor John Bolton, cautioned of the enormous and escalating US debt. Speaking before the Alexander Hamilton Society, Bolton warned that current US debt levels and public obligations posed an “economic threat” to the nation’s security:

“It is a fact that when your national debt gets the level ours is, that it constitutes an economic threat to the society. And that kind of threat ultimately has a national security consequence for it.”*

What was most surprising about Bolton’s talk was that there has been little reaction to it from the financial press, the markets themselves, or political commentators. While the equity markets have been in the midst of a sell off, it has not been due (as of yet) to US deficits, currently in excess of $1trillion annually. Instead, the slide has been the result of fears over increase in interest rates and the continued trade tensions with China.

Nov 30 07:05

BAYER TO FIRE 12,000 - ONE OF EVERY TEN WORKERS - AFTER MONSANTO LEGAL TROUBLES

German pharmaceuticals and chemicals giant, Bayer, announced plans to cut 12,000 out of 118,200 jobs worldwide, or roughly 1 in 10 jobs, in hopes of cutting costs and regaining investor favor after a series of legal setbacks over its purchase of Monsanto earlier this year.

As the FT reports, the proposed reorganization include a plan to exit the market for animal health products, as well the company's Coppertone sun care and Dr. Scholl’s foot care product lines; Bayer also plans to sell the group’s 60% stake in service provider Currenta.

"Including the synergies expected from the acquisition of Monsanto, Bayer anticipates annual contributions of €2.6bn from 2022 on as a result of its planned efficiency and structural measures," the group said in a statement.

Werner Baumann, the Bayer chief executive, said: “With these measures, we are positioning Bayer optimally for the future as a life sciences company.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Bayer has every right to be concerned.

When one merges with a corporation which consistently puts profit first; the heath of the end user is not even in the picture; and lies, blatantly about the product's safety when it knows better, there will be intense financial, and moral, implications surrounding that merger.

Nov 30 06:15

THESE COUNTRIES ARE QUICKLY AND QUIETLY DUMPING THE DOLLAR

Over the past few months, there has been a steady uptick in the number of countries dumping significant portions of their dollar holdings. This is causing many people to worry whether or not the US economy is in for a massive shock sooner, later, or somewhere in between.

While American corporate media outlets either ignore the developments entirely or claim that there is nothing to worry about, the reality is that the dumping of the dollar is a process that is clearly underway. More than that, it appears it is a process that is at least partially coordinated by a number of countries that have been targets of American sanctions and financial bullying in the “post 9/11 world.”

Thus, while corporate media outlets ignore the vanishing dollar dominance and reassure their hapless audience that everything is fine, alt media outlets are predicting a second Weimar Republic, this time in North America.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I cannot tell you, for certain, when the dollar is no longer the protected world currency in this world; but as we get into December, my sense is that the global degradation of the dollar, perhaps in favor of a "basket" of international currencies, cannot possibly be far behind.

Nov 29 16:50

Much Worse Than Expected: Experts Shocked As New Home Sales Plunge 8.9 Percent

The Federal Reserve has set the stage for a giant mess, and it is going to shake the housing industry to the core. -- We should have learned from the mistakes that we made in 2008, but we didn’t, and so now we are going to pay a very great price for our negligence.

Nov 29 16:35

Volatility Isn’t Buying Stock Rally

Nov 29 16:16

Rising Rates Are Killing The Housing Market

Nov 29 16:14

President Trump: ‘My Biggest Threat Is The Fed’

Central banks, along with government, have largely been the cause of all depressions and recessions, so he’s not completely wrong that the Fed is playing a heavy-handed role in the economy. The Federal Reserve is every single freedom-lovers biggest enemy. Unfortunately, not many Americans even understand what the central bank is and what it does.

Nov 29 16:00

Don’t Get Distracted By The Trump/Fed Soap Opera – The Crash Will Continue

The banking elites are done with that phase of the collapse, and they are moving onto the next phase. It is clear in their actions, it is clear in their public admissions, and it is clear in the downward spiral of the economy at large. What we are seeing is not a “correction,” it’s a crash. It is time for people to accept this fact and prepare accordingly if they have not already.

Nov 29 14:17

Bayer to Cut 12,000 Jobs…

Nov 29 12:25

These countries are quickly and quietly dumping the dollar

Over the past few months, there has been a steady uptick in the number of countries dumping significant portions of their dollar holdings. This is causing many people to worry whether or not the US economy is in for a massive shock sooner, later, or somewhere in between.

Nov 29 12:07

US Trade Deficit Soars To Record High As Exports Tumble

The October advanced trade balance (deficit) of goods worsened to $77.2 billion ($77.0 billion expected) from $76.3 billion in September.

Imports rose 0.1% in Oct. to $217.764b from $217.554b in Sept.

Exports fell 0.6% in Oct. to $140.517b from $141.303b in Sept.

This is a new record high deficit for Trump's America...

Nov 29 12:07

Food Crisis In The Making: Farm Bankruptcies Reach Horrifying Levels

We are amidst a food crisis. Farms in the United States Midwest are filing for chapter 12 bankruptcy at an alarming rate. And many are saying president Donald Trump’s trade war is taking the most blame.

We hate to say we told you so, but we told you so. The trade war was a bad idea and everyday average Americans are footing the bill for this asinine policy of tariffs. Now, the food supply could be in jeopardy because of political posturing and that will not bode well for already cash-strapped American families.

A total of 84 farms in the upper Midwest filed for bankruptcy between July 2017 and June 2018, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. That’s more than double the number of Chapter 12 filings during the same period in 2013 and 2014 in Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Montana, reported Vox.

Nov 29 11:57

Putin ratifies interim agreement on EAEU-Iran free trade zone

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law ratifying a temporary agreement on formation of a free trade zone between the Eurasian Economic Union and Iran

Nov 29 10:21

U.S’ LNG Natural Gas Export Crisis In Europe – Russia To Come Out Ahead

No sooner had the heating season started, as American LNG again became unprofitable for sale in Europe. Previously, rising gas prices in EU countries favored sales, but suppliers preferred a more premium Asian market. Now they have no choice. The gas price hike in the United States itself has made American LNG supplies to Europe unprofitable this winter, which opens up new opportunities for increasing Russian gas supplies to both the EU and the US.

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