ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Jul 16 17:59

Who makes the most reliable cars? Budget-friendly makers are more dependable than technology-packed expensive brands

A new survey of 13,500 drivers has found that expensive cars are more likely to suffer problems than those with affordable price tags.

According to the latest J.D. Power reliability study, emerging and new technologies found in premium vehicles are resulting in more owner-reported issues.

...

Surprisingly, the study found that the top 13 most dependable car makers in the UK are all volume brands.

Hyundai - whose cheapest model is the £9,905 i10 city car - ranked the highest overall with a score of 78 PP100.

Jul 16 17:57

Insurers aren't keeping up on cover for downloaded photos, videos, and music - and some WON'T accept claims for computer viruses

What value would you place on the music, photos, and videos you've bought online and downloaded to your phone or computer? And if they were lost, if a virus infected your computer for example, would you be able to claim it back?

The majority of home insurance policies, while covering physical contents in a person's home, do not specify which digital products they cover, new research claims.

There is also a huge discrepancy between what's covered, the amount you can claim for them, and the policy exclusions.

Jul 16 17:50

Netflix slumps 13% as viewer numbers slow dramatically with Disney set to launch its own rival streaming service

Netflix suffered a shock share price dive last night after missing subscriber growth targets for the first time in more than a year.

Shares in the internet streaming giant plunged by around 13pc in after-hours trading in the US as it added 5.15m subscribers in the past three months – a million less than forecast.

Netflix added 670,000 subscribers in the US in the second quarter, well below analysts’ estimates of 1.19m, while signing up 4.47m internationally, compared with 4.97m expected. It now has 130m subscribers.

Jul 16 17:47

China's £1.7bn raid for British tech talent... as another UK chip firm falls into Beijing hands

China has spent a record £1.8billion in six months buying British companies and technology as it plots to develop its own digital giants.

Companies backed by the Beijing government have launched an assault on chip makers and digital firms since the start of the year.

Yesterday another UK firm was about to fall into Chinese hands with chip- maker Telit targeted for its technology which provides cars with software that recognises road lanes and parking assistance.

The deal will see it sold for £80million to TUS International, a company controlled by a Beijing university.

Overall nearly £17billion of takeover deals were announced by Chinese companies in Europe in the first half of 2018, according to a study by law firm Baker McKenzie and research group Rhodium Group.

Jul 16 14:58

Inflation is in the news, but what is it?

Jul 16 12:13

World's Largest Shipping Company Collapses As Trade War Reality Strikes

While US equity markets (well a few mega-cap tech stocks anyway) have remained resilient in the context of rising protectionist fears, the world's largest shipping company is seeing its stock eviscerated as investor anxiety over trade wars finds an outlet that makes rational sense.

A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S may struggle to make a profit this year after the U.S. and China descended into a trade war that is already showing stress in sentiment surveys.

Jul 16 11:56

Donald Trump calls EU, Russia, China 'foes' ahead of summit with Vladimir Putin

The US president listed the EU, China and Russia as economic "foes" in an interview. He also said he has a "big problem" with Germany over its contributions to NATO as well as its pipeline deal with Russia.

Jul 16 09:59

Amazon's European Workers Go On Strike As Bezos' Net Worth Tops $150 Billion

Three months after Jeff Bezos was booed by disgruntled Amazon employees in Germany demanding higher pay and better working conditions, Amazon's European workers are boycotting the company ahead of Amazon's global "Prime Day" to highlight the poor conditions that fulfillment-center staff have endured for years.

Jul 16 09:56

SF Mayor Walks Past Addicts Using Needles, Vows Free Injections "More Feces Than I've Ever Seen"

Jul 16 09:50

What did corporate America do with that tax break? Buy record amounts of its own stock

The White House promised '70 percent' of the tax cut would go to workers. It didn't.

Jul 16 09:27

POLITICIAN FLIPS OUT AND EXPOSES CENTRAL BANKS SCAM

Jul 16 09:10

Financial Parasites Have Become Neo-Feudal Landlords

Classical economics divided income into two types: earned and unearned. Earned income came from productive labor combined with capital investment. Unearned income was considered parasitical and consisted of rent, interest and dividends. It was not considered as adding to GDP but as subtracting from it. It was money made by manipulating money much as feudal landlords made their money in what has been called a rentier economy.

Today, most of the money earned by the 1% driving the income inequality gap is being made in the financialized, rentier economy but is now considered earned income. New methods have been devised to make money not by productive labor and investment but by manipulating financial instruments. One such manipulation consists of stock buybacks.

Jul 16 07:06

The Amazon Effect

Jul 16 05:33

Ron Paul Warns That When The “Biggest Bubble In The History Of Mankind” Bursts It Could “Cut The Stock Market In Half”

When this bubble finally bursts, will we witness the biggest stock market crash in U.S. history?  “The bigger they come, the harder they fall” is a well used phrase, but I think that it is very appropriate in this case. 

Jul 16 04:50

It’s been another tough week for Tesla…

Jul 16 04:05

Friday Reveals Event Risk Complacency

Jul 16 00:24

Ron Paul Warns That When The “Biggest Bubble In The History...

10 years ago, virtually everyone thought that the “boom times” would last forever too. But they didn’t. Instead, we plunged into the greatest economic and financial crisis since the Great Depression, but at this point 2008 seems like ancient history to most people.

Jul 15 10:52

The US Is Dead Broke

Jul 15 10:00

Is a Coming NATO Crisis Inevitable?

Of President Donald Trump’s explosion at Angela Merkel’s Germany during the NATO summit, it needs to be said: It is long past time we raised our voices.

America pays more for NATO, an alliance created 69 years ago to defend Europe, than do the Europeans. And as Europe free-rides off our defense effort, the EU runs trade surpluses at our expense that exceed $100 billion a year.

To Trump, and not only to him, we are being used, gouged, by rich nations we defend, while they skimp on their own defense.

At Brussels, Trump had a new beef with the Germans, though similar problems date back to the Reagan era. Now we see the Germans, Trump raged, whom we are protecting from Russia, collaborating with Russia and deepening their dependence on Russian natural gas by jointly building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline under the Baltic Sea.

Jul 15 09:12

CHINA takes control of GOLD from the COMEX 

The correlation between Gold and the USD/CNY exchange rate has become clear recently. I first cited the idea of Gold being pegged in yuan terms in February, based on the increasingly narrow range in the Gold/yuan (or “XAU/CNY”) exchange rate. I emphasized this, given what it means for Gold in that USD/CNY becomes a primary driver of the price of Gold in dollars. Now it’s mainstream, thanks to the escalating trade war between the U.S. and China, and China’s response in devaluing the yuan by ~8% in 3 months.

In addition, Jim Rickards pointed out his belief last week that Gold is pegged against the IMF’s currency, the Special Drawing Rights (or “SDR”), and that China and the IMF are coordinating to keep the SDR within a range of 850-950 against Gold.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF China is now directly involved in pricing gold, then the US has already lost the economic war before these various dueling sanctions start to bite, and big-time.

Jul 15 09:08

Russia speeds up dumping the dollar from economy

One of Russia’s largest banks, VTB is seeking to decrease the share of US dollar transactions at home as locals are choosing the Russian ruble over the greenback.

“There is one interesting thing I wanted to highlight. Since the beginning of this year, people seem to be less interested in making dollar deposits or taking out dollar loans, compared to ruble-denominated deposits and loans. We believe this to be an important step towards the de-dollarization of the Russian finance sector,” said VTB head Andrey Kostin at a Kremlin meeting with President Vladimir Putin.

Jul 15 06:30

Parents Now Taking On Most New Student Debt

Jul 14 19:07

Here’s why Tesla is heading to $33 a share

Jul 14 14:48

Flattening Yield Curve Puts Pressure On Banks

Jul 14 11:07

Another Drawback to the Housing Bubble

Jul 14 10:47

Varoufakis Blasts Europe's Remarkable Ability To Remain In Denial

Europe’s establishment is luxuriating in two recent announcements that would have been momentous even if they were only partly accurate: the end of Greece’s debt crisis, and a Franco-German accord to redesign the eurozone. Unfortunately, both reports offer fresh proof of the European Union (EU) establishment’s remarkable talent for never missing an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

The two announcements did not come in the same week by accident. The Greek debt implosion, back in 2010, was the ugly symptom of the eurozone’s design flaws, which is why it triggered a domino effect across the continent. Greece’s continuing insolvency reflects the deep disagreements within the Franco-German axis concerning eurozone redesign. While three French presidents and the same German chancellor were failing to agree on the institutional changes that would render the eurozone sustainable, Greece was asked to bleed quietly.

Jul 14 10:43

STUDENT DEBT BUBBLE EXPANDS AS PARENTS DO MORE OF THE BORROWING

Not so long ago, student debt was mostly the responsibility of students. That is, you paid for college with loans and then paid off those loans with the proceeds of the good job you got with an advanced education.

These days it’s a little different. The cost of higher education is soaring, the jobs available to college grads don’t pay as much, relatively speaking, as they used to, and the size of loans available to students – though huge – don’t cover the full cost of many degrees.

One might expect these changes to lead more students to work for a few years and save up, or choose a cheaper degree, or eschew college altogether (as a lot of successful people now recommend) and substitute work experience for a diploma.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The costs of college have become insane, and do not always guarantee a great-paying job.

Kids going into college, and the families which love them, need to educate themselves about the fundamental changes in work, which will drive the future's jobs.

A major in feminist history, coupled a minor in world-wide spiritual practices, is not going to get you a job this part of the 21st century, unless you are willing to get a PhD, where the only thing you will be able to do is teach, and the field is going to be swarming with similar candidates.

Jul 14 09:55

AFTER TRUMP PUSHED NATO MEMBERS TO SPEND MORE, LOCKHEED DOUBLES PRODUCTION AS ORDERS “EXPLODE”

After a “very intense” summit with leaders of NATO member states earlier this week, U.S. President Trump has claimed that he has managed to secure commitments from the European leaders of NATO member countries that will see them increase their military spending.

On Wednesday, Trump allegedly told NATO leaders that if they did not meet their defense spending targets of at least 2 percent of gross domestic product by next January, the United States would consider withdrawing from the alliance, prompting an emergency NATO summit. After the emergency meeting, Trump told reporters, “I told people that I’d be very unhappy if they didn’t up their financial commitments substantially.”
Though some European leaders later claimed that an agreement to increase spending among member nations had not been reached, many of those same leaders asserted that their nations “must” spend more on their militaries and funding of NATO operations.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Was this last NATO summit an economic triumph for LOCKEED?!?

Absolutely.

Was this last NATO summit a triumph for peace?!?

HELL, NO!

Jul 14 07:35

AFTER TRUMP PUSHED NATO MEMBERS TO SPEND MORE, LOCKHEED DOUBLES PRODUCTION AS ORDERS “EXPLODE”

After a “very intense” summit with leaders of NATO member states earlier this week, U.S. President Trump has claimed that he has managed to secure commitments from the European leaders of NATO member countries that will see them increase their military spending. On Wednesday, Trump allegedly told NATO leaders that if they did not meet their defense spending targets of at least 2 percent of gross domestic product by next January, the United States would consider withdrawing from the alliance, prompting an emergency NATO summit. After the emergency meeting, Trump told reporters, “I told people that I’d be very unhappy if they didn’t up their financial commitments substantially.”

Jul 14 07:34

The Rise and Fall of Trade – Redux

Jul 14 06:44

15-minute video: Expert economics professor explains banks create ‘money’ as Orwellian-opposite: debt created out of nothing and owed back to them with interest. Monetary reform + public banking answers with debt-free money + non-profit credit

*hyperlinks/videos live at source*

I last wrote on monetary reform and public banking with Wall Street insider Nomi Prins with her new book, Collusion: How central bankers rigged the world, interviewed by USAWatchdog.com's Greg Hunter for 28 minutes.

Now, here’s 15 minutes from The Monetary Institute’s "Our Money, Our Banks, Our Country - Money Creation in the Modern Economy" conference held in Zurich, Switzerland on February 5, 2018 from Professor Richard Werner, Chair in International Banking, University of Southampton to explain what all economic courses teach, but few consider:

What we use for money is its Orwellian opposite: debt created out of nothing and owed back to private banks with interest.
The consequences of these mathematical mechanics of creating negative numbers forever is increasing and unpayable total debt, with accelerating interest costs that can only and always increase until tragic-comic collapse of the system.

Jul 14 04:14

Inverse ETFs Don’t Always Work

Jul 13 16:20

Helms & Gray: Real Estate Investing 101

Jul 13 15:29

Greatest Jobs Market In History?

Jul 13 12:46

Mexico's President-Elect Plans to End the Nation's War on Drugs

López Obrador, the former mayor of Mexico City, campaigned heavily on the need for change, especially around drug policy, corruption, and public safety. “Abrazos, no balazos” (“hugs, not gunfights”) was one of his favorite campaign slogans. AMLO campaigned cautiously, hammering away at crime, corruption, and violence and mentioning different drug policy-related changes, but not coming out with specific policy proposals. Still, from his own remarks and those of people who will be assuming key positions in his administration, we can begin to sketch an outline of what those policies may look like.

Marijuana Legalization

Mexico is one of the world’s largest marijuana producers (although the local industry has been taking a hit in recent years from completion north of the border), it has decriminalized the possession of small amounts of the herb, and it has legalized medical marijuana.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a completely a reasonable idea, as the alleged "war on drugs" has been an abject failure; but expect American politicians to fight and claw against it, because of the huge amounts of illegal money it creates (most likely for politicians and banks as well).

Jul 13 12:41

Trump’s Criticism of NATO Ignores the Real Questions

Donald Trump’s bluster at the NATO summit only has to do with money, not whether the alliance serves any genuine security purpose, says Jonathan Marshall.

The usual NATO summit begins and ends with U.S. and European leaders issuing platitudes about the unbreakable bonds between Western democracies. The two-day summit that began Wednesday is not the usual NATO summit. President Donald Trump came to Brussels armed with a barrage of insults and Twitter blasts against his ostensible allies.

Jul 13 12:21

‘If Iran can't export oil no-one in Middle East will,’ Tehran warns

Iran has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, a vital artery for oil shipments from the Middle East. The warning comes in response to the US, which is trying to cut off Iranian crude exports.

After pulling out of a landmark international deal curtailing Tehran's nuclear program, Washington has ordered countries to cease buying oil from Iran by November 4 or face secondary US sanctions. Major European energy corporations like France's Total have already pulled out of Iran.

Read more
A helicopter from the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln hovers over an Iranian patrol ship during a transit through the Strait of Hormuz © Jumana El HelouehGet ready for $250 oil if Iran blocks key shipment route in Middle East, analysts tell RT.

Iran's supreme leader's senior adviser for international affairs, Ali Akbar Velayati said his country will retaliate.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Nothing ambiguous here!

But there are moments when I wish our very communicative President wouldn't attempt to threaten allies over not importing Iranian oil, and give that ultimatum a "drop dead" date, which I believe, is 4 November.

Trump presses allies to quit importing Iranian oil by November 4

So what happens on November 5th?!? Is President Trump going to attack every single ally which did not stop importing Iranian oil?!?

Or is that the planned start of a military attack against Iran itself?!?

I think it would make sense to start paying attention to large US troop movements in the Middle East right after Labor Day this year.

And Mr. President, please be aware; Russia has historically pledged to protect Iran should it be militarily attacked.

We have seen just how well Russia's weaponry performs in Syria; are you really serious about going to war against Iran, understanding that it will be supported by Russian troops and Russian hardware?!?

I would like to think not, please, Mr. President: at this time in its history, the US military does not have the weaponry; the troop strength; the manufacturing; or the money to insure a positive outcome to a conventional war in Iran against Russia.

Jul 13 12:05

NATIVE AMERICANS WHO PROTESTED DAKOTA ACCESS GET HANDED THE LONGEST PRISON SENTENCES

Among the hundreds of people arrested in North Dakota for protesting the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline, Native Americans faced the most serious charges. More than two years after the protests began, federal judges are now handing down lengthy prison sentences to the protesters.

One of the Standing Rock activists, Red Fawn Fallis, was sentenced Wednesday for her role in a shooting incident during the protests. As part of a plea deal, the 39-year-old will serve the longest prison term of any Dakota Access protester: four years and nine months in federal prison for one count of civil disorder and one count of possession of a firearm and ammunition by a felon.

The legal owner of the gun Red Fawn is alleged to have fired was a paid FBI informant named Heath Harmon, a 46-year-old member of the Fort Berthold Reservation in western North Dakota, The Intercept reported last December.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There is no "justice' in this country; we are simply a nation of "Just US!!!", when it comes to major corporations getting their way.

Jul 13 12:02

VIDEO CAPTURES STUNNING MOMENT BRAND NEW MEXICO CITY MALL COLLAPSES

The collapse of a newly-developed shopping mall has been captured in jaw-dropping footage filmed by shocked onlookers in Mexico City.
Shoppers had been evacuated from the Artz Pedregal mall in the center of the Mexican capital on Thursday. Videos posted to social media show a multi-storey section of the mall falling in a hail of glass and metal, with some of the debris falling into lanes of a nearby freeway.

Inspectors are now investigating whether the collapse of the mall, which had been open since March, was due to structural issues or subsoil slides. The Mayor of Mexico City, José Ramón Amieva, said the issue was spotted hours before the collapse, leaving enough time for mall officials to organize an evacuation. No injuries have been reported.

"It is a case of negligence," Amieva said, according to the San Luis Obispo Tribune, adding that officials will be reviewing the planning process that led to the building’s development.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is why, when developing commercial or any other kind of building space, you always listen to your soils engineer, and never skimp on structural engineering.

Mike and I lived through the Northridge quake, and there was some structural damage to the apartment in which we lived; but other multi-family residential buildings nearby absolutely pancaked due to the quake.

Jul 13 10:20

AS GOV’T FAILS CITIZENS, ELON MUSK PROMISES TO FIX LEAD CONTAMINATION IN FLINT HOMES

- When a Twitter user openly challenged Elon Musk and questioned whether he was capable of providing clean water to residents in Flint, Michigan, he responded and pledged his commitment to the cause, which sparked a campaign to help the citizens who have been neglected by local and state governments.

The clean water crisis in Flint began in 2014 when the city’s local drinking water was changed to a cheaper source, which was not sufficiently treated, and more than 100,000 residents were exposed to alarmingly high levels of lead in their drinking water.

After four years and an abundance of media coverage, there are still residents who are subjected to contaminated drinking water, and it has become obvious that the local government has no plans to provide the help its citizens need. The Twitter user who reached out to Musk, wrote, “I heard a bunch of people saying there’s NO WAY you could help get clean water to Flint, Michigan. Said you wouldn’t be capable idk.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope Musk puts his good faith, energy, money, where his tweets are; it is an absolute abomination on the part of the city officials in Flint, Michigan, and the state apparatchiks in Lansing, that they have not fixed the problems here by now.

But unfortunately, Flint is a heavily distressed neighborhood, mired in both poverty, and a great need for public assisance, so it was, and is, considered "expendible" by the State officials in Lansing.

Everyone who signed off on this change of water sourcing should be doing hard time in prison. Unfortunately, however, that is not going to happen until pigs discover that they are aerodynamic.

Jul 13 09:22

Crohn’s Disease and Marijuana: Efficacy, Research and Dosing

Four years of continuous flares and I am at that point. Lost 15 lbs. this week. Have some other major problems too. Feel like the world is crashing in on me.
Will be sketchy the next few months as far as posting. I will survive.

Crohn’s Disease is a debilitating autoimmune illness which can break the spirit of even the toughest individual.

Crohn’s Disease is an inflammatory bowel disease, for which the cause has not yet been fully identified. The most accepted theory to date is that Crohn’s is both genetic and environmental – flaws in the in-born immune system combine with various outside factors to produce the development of disease.

Jul 13 07:48

Party as if there is no trade war?

Jul 13 06:02

Zuckerberg Dumping FB Stock

Jul 13 05:41

Poundworld to close another 80 stores

Another 80 Poundworld stores will be closed, resulting in 1,024 job losses, the company's administrators have said.

The latest announcement means that 105 of the company's 335 stores are now earmarked for closure.

Poundworld went into administration last month after failing to cope with rising costs, fewer shoppers and greater competition.

The company's administrators, Deloitte, said talks to sell remaining parts of the business continue.

Jul 13 03:43

The mother of all credit crises is coming...

Jul 13 03:43

America’s Phony Economy

Jul 12 17:23

With this Inflation, What Will the Fed Do?

Jul 12 16:13

FANG seems fundamentally worthless?

Jul 12 14:34

ALERT: “This Happened Prior To 6 Of The Last 7 Recessions”

“This less-followed indicator has a good enough relationship with recession risk during the last 50 years that it should not be ignored,” warned Jim Paulsen, Leuthold’s chief investment strategist, in a note to clients this week.

Having warned last week that “it’s been too quiet, for too long,” Paulsen now sees the potential catalyst for the market’s next move as low-rated investment-grade credit spreads blow out beyond an historically crucial level.

As Bloomberg reports, for the first time since just prior to the 2007-2009 recession, premiums on the lowest-rated tranche of investment-grade U.S. corporate bonds have risen to 2 percent after being below that level, according to data compiled by the Minneapolis-based research group.

The analysis looks at the gap in yields between corporate debt rated Baa by Moody’s Investors Service and those on 10-year Treasuries.

Jul 12 14:21

"This Is A Very Scary Scenario": Restructuring Legend Warns Of Coming "Perfect Storm"

Two months ago, we brought to your several very concerning quotes from some of the nation's top restructuring bankers, of which the most dire warning came from Bill Derrough, the former head of restructuring at Jefferies and the current co-head of recap and restructuring at Moelis who admitted that: "I do think we're all feeling like where we were back in 2007. There was sort of a smell in the air; there were some crazy deals getting done. You just knew it was a matter of time."

What he is referring to is not just the overall level of exuberance, but the lunacy taking place in the bond market, where CLOs are being created at a record pace, where CCC-rated junk bonds can't be sold fast enough, and where the a yield-starved generation of investors who have never seen a fair and efficient market without Fed backstops, means that the coming bond-driven crash will be spectacular.

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