ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

May 17 11:35

Broke Illinois Pension System Leaves Every Resident With $11,000 Of Debt

For those unfamiliar, here's a quick recap: Illinois (rate just one notch above junk) is drowning under a mountain of debt, unpaid bills and underfunded pension liabilities and it's largest city, Chicago, is suffering from a staggering outbreak of violent crime not seen since gang wars engulfed major cities from LA to New York in the mid-90's, while rising taxes have prompted a mass exodus with the state lost 1 resident every 4.3 minutes in 2017.

May 17 11:07

Alan Greenspan: “If Gold is Worthless and Meaningless, Why Hold It?”

If we go all the way back to 1966 we would find Alan Greenspan’s report Gold and Economic Freedom where Greenspan explained, in plain english, how what ails us to this day was born in from reckless gold policies instituted by people with less than honorable intentions.

In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value. If there were, the government would have to make its holding illegal, as was done in the case of gold. If everyone decided, for example, to convert all his bank deposits to silver or copper or any other good, and thereafter declined to accept checks as payment for goods, bank deposits would lose their purchasing power and government-created bank credit would be worthless as a claim on goods. The financial policy of the welfare state requires that there be no way for the owners of wealth to protect themselves. Source [emphasis added]

May 17 10:19

Are The Wheels Coming Off The System?

The dollar is said to be “soaring,” though I take issue with that characterization for now (see the chart below); 10-yr Treasury yields are also rising, though the yield on the 10-yr is only up about 67 basis points if you measure from January 1, 2017. What’s really going on?

Ten years of money printing by the Federal Reserve has removed true price discovery from the markets. The best evidence is the inexorable rise in the stock market despite the fact that corporate earnings have been driven largely by share buybacks and GAAP accounting gimmicks. Measuring stock values on the basis of revenue and revenue growth multiples would reveal the most overvalued stock market in U.S. history.

May 17 10:13

Trump-linked Luxury Real Estate Project in Indonesia, to Receive $500 Million Funding from China

The White House has declined to comment on a planned Indonesian real estate project which will bring together Trump Organization branding and hundreds of millions of dollars of Chinese government money.

“MNC Lido City” is the name of the massive, billion-dollar “integrated lifestyle resort” that will be built on the outskirts of Jakarta. Among other things, the resort will include hotels, residences, and a golf course that will all be under the Trump Organization brand.

May 17 09:41

inequality'CEOs don't want this released': US study lays bare extreme pay-ratio problem

The first comprehensive study of the massive pay gap between the US executive suite and average workers has found that the average CEO-to-worker pay ratio has now reached 339 to 1, with the highest gap approaching 5,000 to 1.

The study, titled Rewarding Or Hoarding?, was published on Wednesday by Minnesota’s Democratic US congressman Keith Ellison, and includes data on almost 14 million workers at 225 US companies with total annual revenues of $6.3tn.

Just the summary makes for sober reading.

In 188 of the 225 companies in the report’s database, a single chief executive’s pay could be used to pay more than 100 workers; the average worker at 219 of the 225 companies studied would need to work at least 45 years to earn what their CEO makes in one.

It also shows how some of the most extreme disparities in CEO-to-worker pay exist in industries that are considered consumer discretionary, such as fast food and retail, with a 977 to 1 disparity, one of the widest gaps.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I frankly think that this study was a very positive thing Congressman Ellison has done; now, we have a far clearer picture of the gap between executive compensation, vs/ compensation for the ordinary workers in corporations.

May 17 09:37

IN SEATTLE, AMAZON SHRUGS

May 17 09:36

WATCH THOUSANDS OF ROBOTS PACK GROCERIES IN A WAREHOUSE

Ocado's new warehouse has thousands of robots zooming around a grid system to pack groceries. The thousands of robots can process 65,000 orders every week. They communicate on a 4G network to avoid bumping into each other. Is this the future of retail?

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The short answer is, heck yes!! And this is why people who are thinking about what their future education should be, need to understand what the future of work will be like, particularly for the unskilled worker, in the next 5 to 10 years. This warehouse/distribution center is only the beginning. We will be looking at darned near automated everything, and if you are not a person who understands how to make the computers work which will drive this phenomenon, you will absolutely be getting the short end of the stick, in terms of wages and opportunities.

May 17 09:31

Beyond the Flint tragedy: Contaminated drinking water is everywhere in America

The water crisis in Flint, Michigan, became a national news story, and for good reason. Republican leaders in the state were finally forced to take steps to stop the poisoning of Flint's drinking water with lead and other toxins, foisted on the community as part of a short-sighted cost-cutting measure. Despite improvements, the future of Flint's water supply is uncertain, but at least that story has brought increased attention to the problem of lead in water in many large cities, including Chicago.

The grim reality, however, is that the problems with American drinking water are diverse and widespread, even if most aren't quite as severe as what happened in Flint. Agricultural waste in particular is poisoning water, especially in rural areas, creating a myriad of health risks. Current government policy remains poorly equipped to deal with this issue.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

For being derelict in their duty to provide clean water for their citizens, city and county officials, wherever there is a water crisis of their own making, should be doing hard jail time.

There are conservational experts and water experts who would understand how not to let this happen, and they should be an important part of every city and county infrastructure in this country.

May 17 09:24

Collapse of Virgin Trains East Coast deal leaves taxpayers £2BILLION out of pocket

THE FAILED Virgin franchise on the East Coast Mainline has left the country £2billion out of pocket after its deal to run services was cut short, it emerged today.

The Government today confirmed it was taking the routes back into public control, just three years into an eight-year deal which would have been worth £3.3billion had it been seen through to a conclusion.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling confirmed the decision in an announcement in the House of Commons today - immediately drawing condemnation from Labour and trade union leaders who dubbed it a "bailout”.

Virgin Trains East Coast, spearheaded by managing director David Horne, won the contract to run the East Coast line after it was privatised in 2015.

May 17 09:21

ATLANTICISM CRACKS!: EU TO DUMP US DOLLAR For IRAN DEALINGS

An anonymous diplomatic source in Brussels has revealed to RIA Novosti that the European Union intends to discontinue paying for Iranian oil in US dollars. This is a major development which confirms a series of articles in global media which reveal the growing positive developments indicating that Atlanticism is in a serious crisis. It has cracked. Analyses by CSS and FRN’s own experts going back a number of years have forecasted that these events would eventuate.

This comes on the heels of the “Euro-troika” of France, Germany, and the UK agreeing with Iran to develop a support program and strengthen economic ties in response to the US’ withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal proclaimed by Trump on May 8th.

May 17 09:21

BRANDON SMITH: GLOBAL ELITISTS ARE NOT HUMAN

It is often said that “other-izing” people overall can be dangerous and other-izing your enemies specifically can be tactically detrimental. For one, it can lead to a false sense of superiority over those people as you assert some kind of imagined genetic advantage. It can also lead to dangerous generalizations of vast groups as you categorize and pigeonhole millions as being exactly the same when this is rationally impossible. However, other-izing is perhaps the only option when faced with a very particular type of person embracing a very particular brand of ideology; other-izing can become a matter of survival.

I am of course talking about globalists.

May 17 09:13

Alberta passes bill 'to turn off the taps' to B.C. over pipeline delays

Alberta has passed legislation giving the province's energy minister the power to choke off gasoline shipments to British Columbia if that province continues to throw up barriers to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Bill 12 passed late Wednesday afternoon in the Alberta Legislature. David Swann, the Liberal for Calgary-Mountain View, was the only member of the legislature to vote against it.

Earlier Wednesday, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley used her strongest language yet about her intentions for the law, stating she was prepared to use it on short notice, if required.

May 17 08:54

WELLS FARGO CAUGHT ALTERING INFORMATION ON BUSINESS CUSTOMERS DOCUMENTS

Just when you thought that after the last criminal offense by Wells Fargo (which as a reminder was pushing customers into higher-fee retirement accounts), surely there was no way Warren Buffett's favorite criminal organization would be caught again engaging in some even more bizarre criminal activity.

Alas, it was not meant to be as Wells somehow always finds a way, and moments ago the WSJ reported that in the latest scandal involving America's largest mortgage lender, "some employees" in Wells Fargo’s business banking, aka "wholesale" unit and is separate from Wells' retail division, improperly altered information on documents related to corporate customers without their knowledge.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Wells Fargo continues to be pathologically evil, because no one executive who has signed off on these nasty corporate practices ever goes to jail; that has to change, in order to for these practices to stop.

May 17 08:08

Subprime 60 Day Late Worse than 2008-09

May 17 07:28

Does WeWork at All?

The CEO is selling that $20 billion valuation to a lot of smart, rich guys. But WeWork’s entities are known as SPE’s (“Screwing Probably Expected”), and its landlords will be the first to go down.

May 17 05:08

3 Mega-Bets on 1 Mega-Trend: Uh Oh!

May 16 16:59

Death of the DollarEconomyGeopoliticsMetalsUncategorized Switzerland – A Once-in-a-Lifetime Chance to spreading Positive Banking News to the World

by Peter Koenig, The Saker:

It’s called “Vollgeld Initiative” – in German, meaning more or less “Referendum for Sovereign Money”. What is “Sovereign Money”? – Its money produced only by the Central Bank, by the “Sovereign”, the government, represented by its central bank. Money created in accordance with the needs of the economy, as contrasted to the profit and greed motives of the banking oligarchy – wat it is today; money creation at will, by private banking.............................

May 16 14:45

High Taxes Don’t Make Rich People Move

May 16 13:28

U.S. Dollar Rally Is Doomed

May 16 12:04

France’s Total to quit Iran gas project if no US sanctions waiver

Total will pull out of a multibillion-dollar gas project in Iran if it cannot secure a waiver from US sanctions, the French energy company said on Wednesday. The announcement shows how European companies are starting to take matters into their own hands as their leaders struggle to save the nuclear deal with Iran, Reuters said.

May 16 12:00

Putin HITS BACK at US sanctions with bizarre plan to BAN FRENCH FRIES from Russia

RUSSIANS might not be able to eat imported French fries anymore as Putin is considering to ban them completely from the market in a furious response to sanctions the US and other Western countries have imposed against Moscow.

May 16 10:02

Trump's Iran gamble won't topple regime, but could start ‘war’ with EU

Trump’s plans are not about starting a war with Iran but trying to bring about regime change by draining it financially. It’s a plan which is doomed to fail, and could also create a costly trade war with the EU.

You have to go back quite some time in contemporary history to find a policy decision taken by a superpower so spectacularly wrong, that it compares to the decision by Donald Trump to pull out of the so-called Iran deal. One tends to think more recently of the decision by George W. Bush to not only invade Iraq with no real plan, but to also cancel all pay to the Iraqi army – a move which perhaps our grandchildren will still feel the impact of, in decades to come. Another one, perhaps, could be the decision in 1956 for Britain to plough ahead with the military campaign in Suez, an all-time low in British history which still produces red faces from bewildered politicos and historians today.

May 16 09:56

The US pulled out of Iran Nuclear Deal because it’s too broke

Here’s a perspective on Trump’s decision to pull out of JCPOA, a.k.a. the Iran Nuclear Deal, that definitely doesn’t get enough airtime. It’s all about money. Following the Iranian revolution of 1978-79, Jimmy Carter froze Iran’s assets in the US. Ever since then, the US has been holding on to between $100 and $120 billion in Iranian assets, which have been accruing rent and interest. After the JCPOA, which stipulated the lifting of sanctions on Iran, Washington has been doing its best to drag its feet on releasing these assets, but they would have had to be returned to Iran sooner or later… unless the US pulled out of the deal, which it just did.

May 16 09:23

Amazon and Starbucks blast Seattle council's controversial new tax that would see large businesses pay for programs for the homeless

Starbucks and Amazon have come out swinging against a new tax in Seattle that would see large corporations pay $275 in tax for every employee.

Any firm earning more than $20 million a year will be asked to pay a head tax, which will raise up to about $48million to help battle the city's homelessness problem.

Amazon, which employs about 45,000 people in Seattle, will shoulder most of the burden - and they're not happy about it, instead claiming the city is anti-business and has a spending efficiency problem.

May 16 09:22

It gets worse: Tesla now has to compete with $50,000 electric BMWs going for $54/month

As if things weren’t bad enough for beleaguered Tesla…

The company lost $1.1 billion in cash in the last quarter, executives are leaving the company in droves, it’s facing production issues with its Model 3 and, as I recently discussed, Elon Musk insulted analysts on the latest earnings call by dismissing their questions – regarding the company’s survival – as “boring” and “boneheaded,” (just after shareholders approved his obscenely large pay package).

Now, in addition to all that, the company has to compete with BMW leasing its $50,000 i3 electric vehicle for only $54 a month. That’s not a typo. Bloomberg recently confirmed you could lease an i3 for less than your monthly cable bill.

Lest you think BMW is making money on that lease, I assure you it’s not. The entire EV sector is losing money.

May 16 08:08

Central Banks Prepare For The Collapse By Creating A Database Of Who Owes What

Banks are now turning towards blockchain technology. HSBC completes its first trade-finance using blockchain. NYSE plans to settle bitcoin futures using physical bitcoins instead of fiat currency.

May 16 07:40

Europe to ditch US dollar in payments for Iranian oil – source

Donald has sold what little soul he has to Israel and the chickens are coming home to roost!

The European Union is planning to switch payments to the euro for its oil purchases from Iran, eliminating US dollar transactions, a diplomatic source told RIA Novosti.
Brussels has been at odds with Washington over the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, which was reached during the administration of Barack Obama. President Donald Trump has pledged to re-impose sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

May 16 07:36

'With friends like that who needs enemies’: Tusk lashes out at Trump over recent US moves

Looks like the EU will be ditching the dollar for oil payments.

Donald Tusk
?
@eucopresident
Looking at latest decisions of @realDonaldTrump someone could even think: with friends like that who needs enemies. But frankly, EU should be grateful. Thanks to him we got rid of all illusions. We realise that if you need a helping hand, you will find one at the end of your arm.

5:36 AM - May 16, 2018
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May 15 15:22

Nothing To Sweat Here.....Not!

May 15 14:56

How the Danger of Debt Looms Large

May 15 13:34

EAEU enhances integration, accepts Moldova as observer

Leaders of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) member-states agreed to grant observer status to Moldova, Russian President said when opening a broad meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council. Putin extended a welcome to Moldovan President Igor Dodon who joined the meeting. "We expect that as an observer state, the Republic of Moldova will actively participate in our union’s activities," Putin said. Igor Dodon stressed that he considers the move to grant observer status to Moldova to be a historic event for the country... The meeting of the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council that took place in Sochi on Monday has become an important step towards boosting comprehensive collaboration and integration of Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. Leads of the EAEU (Eurasian Economic Union) member-states discussed cooperation in energy, digital economy, medicine and ecology.

May 15 13:31

Talks on free trade zone between EAEU and Egypt to start in autumn of 2018

Negotiations on the creation of a free trade zone (FTA) between the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and Egypt will begin in autumn of 2018, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday. Speaking after the talks between the heads of the Foreign Ministries and the Ministry of Defense of Russia and Egypt in the 2 + 2 format, he said: "This is a very important, qualitative step for deepening relations between Russia and Egypt, between other members of the EAEU and Egypt". The Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) comprises Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Armenia. The agreement on the establishment of the Russian industrial zone in Egypt will be signed within a week, according to Lavrov...

May 15 11:56

America Spends About Half of World’s Military Expenditures

The National Priorities Project headlines “U.S. Military Spending vs. the World” and reports: “World military spending totaled more than $1.6 trillion in 2015. The U.S. accounted for 37 percent of the total.” But it can’t be believed, because, even if other nations aren’t under-reporting their military expenditures, the U.S. certainly is — under-reporting it by about 50%. The reality is approximately twice the official figure, so that America’s current annual military expenditures are around $1.5 trillion, which is to say, almost equal to that entire global estimate of “more than $1.6 trillion in 2015.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, if you were wondering where all your tax money goes ... now you know!

May 15 11:01

RUSSIAN BANK HELPS VENEZUELA DEFY US SANCTIONS ON CRYPTOCURRENCY

In March, Washington prohibited trade in the petro in the US with President Donald Trump calling the cryptocurrency a 'scam supporting a dictatorship.' The executive order signed by Trump banned “all transactions related to, provision of financing for, and other dealings in, by a United States person or within the United States, any digital currency, digital coin, or digital token,” issued by Venezuela's government.

Maduro vowed that, despite the sanctions, Venezuela would continue pushing forward the domestic blockchain technology and “make the petro one of the most solid and trustworthy cryptocurrencies in the world.”

He added that the digital currency will be traded for several global currencies, including the Russian ruble. The president also announced four “exclusive economic zones” in the country, in which it will be possible to use the petro “for the sale of goods and [payment] of services.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Russia's President Putin... is, at least, one hundred chess moves ahead of President Trump on this issue; and there is nothing President Trump can do, short of an invasion of Venezuela, which can change that.

May 15 11:01

How the Rich Get Richer!

May 15 10:52

Reasons Trump Breaks Nuclear-Sanction Agreement with Iran, Declares Trade War with China and Meets with North Korea

We will examine the reason why Trump has embraced three strategic decisions which have world-historic consequences, namely: Trump’s reneging the nuclear accord with Iran; Trump’s declaration of a trade war with China; and Trump’s meeting with North Korea.

In brief we will explore the political reasons for his decisions; what he expects to gain; and what is his game plan if he fails to secure his expected outcome and his adversaries take reprisals.

May 15 10:51

Switzerland - A Once-in-a-Lifetime Chance to Spreading Positive Banking News to the World

It’s called “Vollgeld Initiative” – in German, meaning more or less “Referendum for Sovereign Money”. What is “Sovereign Money”? – Its money produced only by the Central Bank, by the “Sovereign”, the government, represented by its central bank. Money created in accordance with the needs of the economy, as contrasted to the profit and greed motives of the banking oligarchy – wat it is today; money creation at will, by private banking.

May 15 10:40

'DUP ready to TOPPLE May over Brexit betrayal!' Fury at EU deal that would 'DESTROY trade'

The DUP would "happily bring down" Theresa May as Prime Minister if she continues to backtrack on Brexit, according to Brexit Central deputy editor David Scullion.

The Brexiteer told Julia Hartley-Brewer that the Prime Minister needs to be careful about "backsliding" on Brexit, amid growing frustration on the DUP and Tory benches.

Speaking on talkRadio, he warned Mrs May against pushing for the "trade-destroying" customs partnership, which "no-one really wants".

This comes ahead of a crucial Brexit sub-committee meeting led by the Prime Minister today, tasked to resolve the customs union dispute.

May 15 10:32

How university economic theories are failing us all

The economist John Maynard Keynes said “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?” But many students continue to be deceived by their professors who, even after the great financial crisis, refuse to change their mind and continue to actively peddle theories that are plain wrong.

May 15 10:32

Duma envoy comments on countersanctions bill

The Kremlin is likely to support the bill on criminal liability for compliance with western sanctions against Moscow, says the presidential envoy to the State Duma

May 15 10:31

Beijing: Anti-Moscow Sanctions Won’t Harm Chinese Investors’ Interest in Russia

Anti-Russian sanctions imposed by Washington will not affect Chinese investors’ interest in the Russian market, Beijing will continue to support bilateral cooperation in trade and investment, Liu Xuesong, the deputy director general of the Chinese Commerce Ministry’s Eurasia Affairs Department, said on Tuesday.

"Over the years, the United States has repeatedly imposed sanctions against other states unilaterally. The Chinese side is firmly against this. At present relations between Russia and China are developing very successfully, cooperation in trade and investment will not be affected by external factors… The interest of Chinese investors in Russia will not diminish," Liu told reporters.

The official added that Beijing would support Chinese companies' investments in the Russian market.

May 15 10:30

Staff are leaving Tesla in droves as confidence in increasingly erratic Elon Musk wavers amid falling share price and failure to deliver ‘game changing car’

Tesla has seen top executives depart the company in recent months as CEO Elon Musk has come under fire for erratic behavior at a crucial moment for the company.

Musk told employees Monday the electric carmaker is being reorganized to speed up production of Model 3 vehicles - a key to profitability at the fast-growing firm - as executives are reportedly leaving the company after losing confidence in the CEO.

'To ensure that Tesla is well prepared for the future, we have been undertaking a thorough reorganization of our company,' the memo obtained by AFP said.

'As part of the reorg, we are flattening the management structure to improve communication, combining functions where sensible and trimming activities that are not vital to the success of our mission.'

May 15 10:28

Ellen Brown on Why We Should Own the Banks

May 15 09:57

Sparks Fly Toward The Debt Powder Keg

The narrative that the economy continues to improve is a myth, if not intentional mendacious propaganda. The economy can’t possibly improve with the average household living from paycheck to paycheck while trying to service hopeless levels of debt. In fact, the economy will continue to deteriorate from the perspective of every household below the top 1% in terms of income and wealth.

Theoretically, the Trump tax cuts will add about $90 per month of extra after-tax income for the average household. However, the average price of gasoline has risen close to 40% over the last year (it cost me $45 to fill my tank last week vs about $32 a year ago) For most households, the tax cut “windfall” will be largely absorbed by the increasing cost to fill the gas tank, which is going to continue rising. The highly promoted economic boost from the tax cuts will, instead, end up as a transfer payment to oil companies.

May 15 09:41

US wants China trade deal as talks resume, says White House adviser Kudlow

The United States is not seeking a trade war with China and top US officials are looking to make a deal with Beijing, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Tuesday. The statement came as talks between the two nations were set to resume.

May 15 09:39

More than $100 million in (TAXPAYER) cash left Airport in carry-on luggage to terrorist groups

This fraud is suspected of costing Minnesota taxpayers as much as $100 million a year.

May 15 09:06

43 million Live in Poverty: Poor People’s Campaign Headed to Washington

Eddie Conway speaks to people on the ground who are leading the poor people’s march, which will culminate in Washington DC on June 23rd. The Poor People’s Campaign is a coalition of organizations led by Rev. Dr William Barber II and Reverend Dr Liz Theoharis, inspired by the historic march lead by MLK Jr. 50 years ago

May 15 08:28

Millennial Explanations on Rising Oil Prices

May 15 05:05

TSLA WILL BE THE 2018 LEHMAN BROTHERS?

May 14 19:40

Retailers suffer worst slump in visitors since the recession as one in ten High Street premises stands empty

Cold weather and a continued squeeze on Britons' finance has seen footfall at UK shops drop to levels not seen since the recession, new data show.

Footfall dropped by 3.3 per cent in April, following on from a 6 per cent decline in March, which resulted in an 'unprecedented' drop of 4.8 per cent over the two months, according to figures by the British Retail Consortium.

'Not since the depths of recession in 2009, has footfall over March and April declined to such a degree, and even then the drop was less severe at -3.8 per cent,' said Diane Wehrle, Springboard marketing and insights director.

May 14 14:55

We're vulnerable': Business expert warns budget fails to insulate Australia against another GFC

Australia isn't prepared for a global economic downturn and should be doing more to pay down debt, the chair of the peak body for company directors says.

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