ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

May 31 14:09

The Collapse of High-Yield Bonds Is Imminent

May 31 13:55

As Its Stock Crashes To All Time Low, A Shocked Deutsche Bank Issues A Statement

Back in September 2016, when its stock was imploding over capitalization and solvency concerns, the market was transfixed with the daily drop in Deutsche Bank stock price, which tumbled, eventually sliding below €10, and only implicit promises that Germany would bail it out, prompted a slow, if painful reversal. And yet, at no point in that period did the stock close at a level below where it closed today: a new all time low, crashing 7.2% to €9.16 following reports that the bank was on the Fed's "Secret" probation list.

May 31 12:42

It’s Fear That Is Crippling Our Economy

May 31 12:18

ITALY: The Election That Will CRASH THE EU

May 31 10:44

Oil and gas geopolitics: no shelter from the storm

There could be widespread ramifications from US energy independence and looming US sanctions on Iran and Russia; states in Central Asia could be hit hard, as well as serious possible impacts on global oil production and the West

May 31 09:07

Burrito Index Update: Burrito Cost Triples, Official Inflation Up 43% from 2001

Long-time readers may recall the Burrito Index, my real-world measure of inflation. The Burrito Index: Consumer Prices Have Soared 160% Since 2001 (August 1, 2016). The Burrito Index tracks the cost of a regular burrito since 2001. Since we keep detailed records of expenses (a necessity if you’re a self-employed free-lance writer), I can track the cost of a regular burrito at our favorite taco truck with great accuracy: the cost of a regular burrito has gone up from $2.50 in 2001 to $5 in 2010 to $6.50 in 2016.

It's time for an update: the cost of a regular burrito has now reached $7.50, triple the 2001 cost. That's a 200% increase in 17 years. According to the federal government, inflation since 2001 has risen about 40%: what $1 bought in 2001 now costs $1.43, according to the BLS Inflation calculator.

May 31 09:04

Bye-Bye Benz: Trump Planning Ban On Luxury German Autos

Having cornered his European allies over the Iran sanctions, and tightened his grip on the EU economy over metals tariffs, an exclusive report by German magazine WirtschaftsWoche claims that President Trump is taking direct aim at Merkel and is preparing to impose a total ban on German luxury carmakers from the U.S. market.

May 31 06:57

Recession 2020?

May 30 15:02

Oakland tells homeless to move from Lake Merritt — NBA finals start Thursday

Oakland is dolling itself up to host the NBA championship, and nowhere is that more evident than at Lake Merritt — where weeds are being pulled, the homeless are being cleared out and the Warriors are planning to host a big pre-series party Wednesday night at the Lake Chalet restaurant.

Even ESPN is getting into the act, setting up at the Lake Chalet for a series of live TV shows starting Thursday morning. The Golden State Warriors will face the Cleveland Cavaliers that evening in game one of the seven-game series.

“They’re trying to clean up everywhere — mostly where the homeless are,” said one city worker pulling weeds near Lakeside Drive on the lake’s eastern side.

In fact, one homeless camper, Manual Sanchez, 40, who said he was among the dozens displaced from a San Pablo halfway house where four people died in a suspicious fire last year, said the police gave him until Wednesday to move out of the space he has occupied on the lake’s edge for the past six months.

May 30 14:23

China Trade Deal On The Verge After Beijing Slams Trump's Latest Surprise "Flip-Flop"

One day after Trump surprised trade watchers by announcing he would impose 25% tariffs on up to $50 billion in Chinese tech imports as well as other sanctions, a confused Beijing hit back at the US president, saying that if the U.S. insists on unilateral measures, China will respond accordingly, according to foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told reporters in Beijing on Wednesday.

“Every flip-flop in international relations simply depletes a country’s credibility,” Hua added following the White House's statement on Tuesday that a final list of imported goods to be targeted will be released by June 15, and levies imposed “shortly thereafter.”

Trump’s latest u-turn was greeted with dismay in the Chinese state media, though pledges to retaliate were muted: "The world faces an extremely mercurial White House administration,” an editorial in China’s Global Times tabloid read. “The Chinese government has the ability and wisdom to handle such situations."

May 30 14:21

To Avoid Raising Wages, Firms Are Now Hiring Felons And Drug Addicts: Beige Book

Fast forward to today when fears of trade wars appear to have moderated (no pun intended) and there were only 22 instances of the "word" tariff in the just released, May Beige Book.

Meanwhile, as trade war fears receded modestly, the various regional Feds found that, once again, the U.S. economy expanded "moderately" through much of April and May, which was a modest upgrade from previous periods, although with little indication of overheating... as was the case in late 2007 and early 2008; one exception to this mediocrity was the Dallas District, where overall economic activity sped up to a solid pace.

The Fed's Beige Book report, arguably the least market moving of all if sometimes the most interesting as it is based on direct, anecdotal information collected by the 12 regional Fed banks, said manufacturing showed “strong” gains, while employment and prices continued to rise “modestly” or “moderately”

May 30 11:57

Why a Mortgage Is a Pledge to the Dead

May 30 09:35

Trump BACKS the Euro? US officials tell Italy it's 'BETTER' to stay with EU currency bloc

DONALD Trump’s administration has given their support to Italy staying in the euro and the EU, after commenting the eurozone bloc should “work things out” with Rome.

May 30 09:23

Nerve agent

Nerve agents and antidepressants have something in common!

Nerve agents, sometimes also called nerve gases, are a class of organic chemicals that disrupt the mechanisms by which nerves transfer messages to organs. The disruption is caused by the blocking of acetylcholinesterase, an enzyme that catalyzes the breakdown of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter.

Poisoning by a nerve agent leads to constriction of pupils, profuse salivation, convulsions, and involuntary urination and defecation, with the first symptoms appearing in seconds after exposure. Death by asphyxiation or cardiac arrest may follow in minutes due to the loss of the body's control over respiratory and other muscles.

May 29 15:54

Help draw a smile on the face of a poor Palestinian child

Hello I am Shadi from the besieged Gaza Strip. I work in the field of humanitarian volunteerism, helping the poor, distributing food to the poor and drawing smiles on poor children. Since 2014, the war has started on the Gaza Strip, leading to a high rate of unemployment in the Gaza Strip. That's why I ask you for support. Note / cost of food aid for poor families for a week of $ 20 I wish you help in the success of this project, the combination to help a large number of poor thank you for your support!

May 29 14:49

Rick Santelli & Yra Harris: It All Blows Up

May 29 11:57

How Systems Collapse

This is how systems collapse: faith in the visible surface of abundance reigns supreme, and the fragility of the buffers goes unnoticed.

May 29 11:42

ITALY - THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF THE EUROPEAN UNION - BY DEBS IS DEAD

The news out of Italy over the last two days has the potential to completely change the game as it could end in the destruction of the EU.

The original Euro Community was an admirable ideal as it emphasised the rights of all citizens of member states, guaranteeing them a range of protections from unjust and stupid demagogues. Unfortunately the neolib corporatist globalists took over the machinery and turned it over to a gang of cold-hearted technocrats who used the once estimable governance structure to enforce a draconian monetarist policy. - see Greece.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Given its recent history, it was only a matter of when, and not of if, the EU would fail, spectacularly, which it appears to be about to do.

May 29 11:19

CHINESE FIRM TO INVEST $2B IN OIL REFINERY IN IRAN

A Chinese investment firm will spend US$2 billion on building an oil refinery in the Iranian northern province of Mazandaran, the official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported on Monday, quoting the deputy head of the province’s center for attracting foreign investment, Mousa Qasem-Pisheh.

The Chinese company has already been issued the license to build the oil refinery, Iranian media report, without specifying the name of the Chinese firm involved in the project.

Chinese and Russian firms are expected to continue to invest in Iran, and to actually benefit from the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, especially after European companies are very cautious regarding projects and investments in Iran, for fear of inadvertently breaking some sanction policy as U.S. sanctions on Tehran return.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Way to go, Mr. President, in withdrawing the US from the P5+1 Iran Deal!!

Now, you have both enraged our European allies with reimposition of the sanctions, and brought China, Russia, and Iran, into an even closer relationship; now, what if that relationship extends, which it logically should, to enhanced defense cooperation between all three countries?!?

Did you imagine, when you decided to withdraw from the treaty, that Russia and China would actually benefit, financially from the withdrawal of the US, and this economic boon might lead to better multilateral defense ties between all three countries?!?

Oh, and what else do these countries have in common?!? Let's see: they either have ditched, or will shortly ditch, all use of the US dollar in their international transactions.

A triple play here, Mr. President, and congratulations .... on your outstanding, pathalogical inability to understand what the ultimate ramifications of your decision here would be!!!

May 29 11:06

US Pushes China to Buy its Oil and Gas in Wake of Trade Row - Reports

In April, Beijing was given a list of goods that China buys in various countries that can be replaced by American ones. The list includes oil, oil products, liquefied natural gas, beef, poultry and soybeans.

Washington is pressuring Beijing by lobbying long-term contracts for the supply of energy resources and agricultural products to China in order to reduce the multi-billion-dollar trade deficit between the countries, according to the Financial Times.

Washington also intends to seek the abolition of quotas on US supplies to China. If the parties agree to remove trade barriers, then the expansion of energy supplies, according to the US Treasury, will bring the US an additional 50-60 billion dollars a year.

May 29 11:02

RON PAUL: AMERICA’S INCREDIBLE SHRINKING INFLUENCE

It seems the world has grown tired of neocon threats from Washington. Ironically the “communist” Chinese seem to understand better than the US that in capitalism you do not threaten your customers. While the US is threatening and sanctioning and forbidding economic relations, its adversaries overseas are busy reaping the benefits of America’s real isolationism.

I’ve often spoken of the unintended consequences of our aggressive foreign policy. For example, President Bush’s invasion of Iraq only helped Iran – our “enemy” – become more dominant in the Middle East. But it seems new consequences are emerging, and for the neocons they must be very unintended: for all of its bellicosity, threats, demands, sanctions, and even bombs, the rest of the world is increasingly simply ignoring the demands of Washington and getting on with its own business.

May 29 10:59

GENE-EDITED SUPER-CROPS TO BE GROWN IN UK FOR THE FIRST TIME

Gene-edited super-crops are to be sown in Britain in a European-first after scientists exploited a legal loophole.

The Government has quietly approved the farming of gene-edited (GE) Camelina oilseed crops as part of a trial to super-charge the plants to produce Omega 3 fish oils, one of the most popular food supplements.

The pilot was approved because, unlike genetically modified (GM) plants, the Camelina oilseed crops contain no foreign DNA. Instead, they had their genetic code altered in a way that could have happened naturally.

Scientists say gene-editing can cut the time it takes to engineer new plants from decades to months. They argue embracing the new technology is vital if Britain is to benefit from GE crops and help maintain a sustainable source of fish oils in face of depleted ocean stocks

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"Instead, they had their genetic code altered in a way that could have happened naturally."

But if it DIDN'T happen naturally, how do the scientists believe it "could have"?!?

Playing with the basic building blocks of life (genetic engineering) could well result in an absolute, agricultural, and human, catastrophe here, both to the land, and to the people who ingest this oil.

May 29 10:53

India says it only follows U.N. sanctions, not U.S. sanctions on Iran

India said on Monday it abided by sanctions imposed by the United Nations but not those imposed by any other country, such as those announced by the United States against Iran.

May 29 10:53

Drugmakers Blamed for Blocking Generics Have Jacked Up Prices and Cost the US Billions

Makers of brand-name drugs called out by the Trump administration for potentially stalling generic competition have hiked their prices by double-digit percentages since 2012 and cost Medicare and Medicaid nearly $12 billion in 2016, a Kaiser Health News analysis has found.

As part of President Donald Trump's promise to curb high drug prices, the Food and Drug Administration posted a list of pharmaceutical companies that makers of generics allege refused to let them buy the drug samples needed to develop their products. For approval, the FDA requires so-called bioequivalence testing using samples to demonstrate that generics are the same as their branded counterparts.

The analysis shows that drug companies that may have engaged in what FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb called "shenanigans" to delay the entrance of cheaper competitors onto the market have indeed raised prices and cost taxpayers more money over time.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Corporations... and most definitely, drug manufacturers... have the morals of a dead tree stump (and I am going to get emails/texts from dead tree stumps on this one!!).

This is simply, one element of this moral decay. But the other thing, which is perfectly legal in this country, is allowing doctors to prescribe "off book" uses of drug manufacturers' products which have never been tested on a particular condition the patient has, then getting compensated by those drug companies for so doing.

It is a more common practice than you might imagine. At this point in my life, I have no qualms about asking a physician about a prescription, if it is not generic, regarding whether the doctor is getting compensated in some way for prescribing it in an "off book" manner.

May 29 10:40

A Spiking Dollar = Emerging Market Chaos

May 29 10:33

US FORCES CYPRIOT BANKS TO CRACK DOWN ON ACCOUNTS OF RUSSIAN CLIENTS – REPORT

Russians keeping their cash in Cypriot banks have been caught up in a massive audit of accounts by lenders and watchdogs in the island state. The step was reportedly triggered by pressure from Washington.
Banks in Cyprus now require Russian customers to confirm earnings and tax payments, to produce bank statements for the past year, as well as estate documents, title deeds of business ownership, and a detailed description of their enterprise, according to financial writer Elena Tofanyuk, as quoted by Russian daily Business FM. Previously, Russian clientele were required to produce only a passport and utility bills.

Cypriot banks offer their Russian customers a choice: either to close their accounts or to transfer their funds to Russian Commercial Bank, a subsidiary of Russian state-run lender VTB, the reporter said, citing interviewees who have bank accounts in the country.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

More Russian harrassment/demonization, this time in the Cypress banking system, courtesy of the US government.

What deeply concerns me is how frequently demonization of this kind becomes a prelude to a shooting war, which many in Congress and the Deep State want to have happen against both Russia and China, and soon. Paul Craig Roberts: Washington Plans to Nuke Russia and China

Paul Craig Roberts is no "Chicken Little", declaring that the sky is going to fall; he is one of the most sober-sided, peace-centric political analysts around, and if he is making statements like this in public, it is because he absolutely, and incontrovertibly, believes this to be true.

May 29 10:23

Soros acknowledges Europe’s existential financial crisis, offers solution

Heartless billionaire George Soros told attendees of a speech in Paris on Tuesday that Europe is suffering from an existential financial crisis of great magnitude from which it may never recover before the world-class purveyor of chaos offered a solution.

May 29 09:46

Yes even Sports Comply with Cycles

May 29 08:58

Dixons to shutter 92 UK Carphone Warehouse shops after profit warning

Dixons Carphone is to close 92 of its 650 stores following a profit warning this morning which sent shares tumbling 20 per cent.

The firm expects pre-tax profits to be £382m in its 2017/18 results out next month, but already predicts profits to fall to £300m in 2018/19. In contrast, for 2016/17 it reported profits of £501m.

May 29 05:35

Malls may become empty next year

May 28 17:20

Meetings really DO kill productivity: Study finds we do less with the available time before an appointment because we're always worried we'll run late

Meetings and regular appointments are the enemy of productivity, scientists have discovered.

When you have an upcoming work engagement, the event hinders progress and stops you from being productive.

To avoid this lull, experts suggest lumping all meetings together and leaving longer, extended periods of free time to focus on projects.

May 28 12:01

"A Toxic Coup Narrative": Why Italy's Political Crisis May Be About To Explode

On Friday Europe experienced an existentially terrifying "deja vu" moment straight from the 9th circle of Europe's 2011/2012 sovereign debt hell, when first Italian, and then Spanish, yields exploded amid fears of political chaos in the Eurozone's 3rd largest economy, coupled with the threat of an imminent collapse of the Rajoy government in Spain, the 5th largest economy.

But while Spain is a late entrant to Europe's "political chaos" soap opera - although with both El País & El Mundo calling for an early general election, it is only a matter of time before this particular box of gunpowder also explodes, all eyes remain on Italy where not only have short-term rates blown out to levels that would send MF Global into Chapter 22...

May 28 11:42

Why America Is Heading Straight Toward The Worst Debt Crisis In History

Usually most of the focus in on the national debt, which is now 21 trillion dollars and rising, but when you total all forms of debt in our society together it comes to a grand total just short of 70 trillion dollars. Many people seem to believe that the debt imbalances that existed prior to the great financial crisis of 2008 have been solved, but that is not the case at all. We are living in the terminal phase of the greatest debt bubble in history, and with each passing day that mountain of debt just keeps on getting bigger and bigger.

It simply is not mathematically possible for debt to keep on growing at a pace that is many times greater than GDP growth, and at some point this absurd bubble will come to an abrupt end. So those that are forecasting many years of prosperity to come are simply being delusional. Our current standard of living is very heavily fueled by debt, and at some point we are going to hit a wall.

May 28 11:29

EU EXTENDS SANCTIONS AGAINST SYRIA FOR ONE YEAR

The European Union has decided to extend sanctions against Syria by one year, until June 1, 2019, the EU Council said in a statement on Monday.

“On 28 May 2018, the Council extended EU restrictive measures against the Syrian regime until 1 June 2019. Given the ongoing repression of the civilian population, the EU decided to maintain its restrictive measures against the Syrian regime and its supporters, in line with the EU strategy on Syria,” the document read.

The European Union introduced sanctions “against Syria and persons responsible for the violent repression against the civilian population” in May 2011, during the Arab Spring protests, which led to the ongoing civil war in the country.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

No, Sputnik; the ongoing demonstrations and resultant civil war was funded and supported by US funds, training and equipment!!

I am rather surprised that Sputnik got the situation so wrong; it normally is better than this, which is rather... dismaying.

May 28 11:25

CANADIAN BANKS SAY ‘FRAUDSTERS’ STOLE INFORMATION FROM AT LEAST 40,000 CUSTOMERS

Two Canadian banks warned customers on Monday morning that the personal and financial information of at least 40,000 clients was accessed by criminals.

The affected banks are Simplii Financial—a recently-created brand owned by banking giant CIBC, and which formerly operated as President’s Choice Financial, a grocery store brand—and the Bank of Montreal (BMO). Simplii Financial reportedly has over two million customers, and BMO has more than 12 million clients across its services.

In a statement, Simplii Financial said that the bank is alerting affected customers after it received a tip on Sunday that “fraudsters” may have “electronically accessed” personal and account information for around 40,000 clients. The Bank of Montreal said in a statement that the “fraudsters” themselves contacted the bank on Sunday to let them know they “were in possession of certain personal and financial information for a limited number of customers.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Looks like the Canadian banks are no better at protecting the privacy of their customers than are their American counterparts!!

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