by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 6:00 pm
The world monetary order is changing. Slowly but steadily, global trade and currency markets are becoming less dollar-centric. Formerly marginal currencies such as the Chinese yuan now stand to become serious competitors to U.S. dollar dominance.
Could gold also begin to emerge as a leading currency in world trade? Over time, it certainly could. But the more immediate implications for gold’s monetary role center on its increasing accumulation by central banks such as China’s.
As of October 1st, the Chinese yuan has entered the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Right (SDR) basket of top-tier currencies. It now shares SDR status with the U.S. dollar, euro, British pound, and Japanese yen.
Before the yuan officially becomes an SDR currency, the World Bank intends to sell $2.8 billion in SDR bonds in Chinese markets. The rollout of SDR bonds in China began August 31st. According to Reuters, China’s promotion of SDR bonds “is part of a wider push in China to… boost demand for Chinese yuan and diminish reliance on the U.S. dollar in global reserves.”
King Dollar won’t be dethroned overnight. But the place of prominence the U.S. dollar enjoys as the world’s reserve currency will indeed diminish over time.
Yuan’s Inclusion in the SDR Currency Basket: Merely a Part of China’s De-Dollarization Strategy
China and Russia have mutual geostrategic interests in helping to promote de-dollarization. Toward that end, the two powers are engaging in bilateral trade deals that bypass the dollar. Annual bilateral trade between China and Russia has surged from $16 billion in 2003 to nearly $100 billion today. When China hosted the G20 summit in September, it will make Russian President Vladimir Putin its premier guest of honor.
U.S. officials are none too pleased. They fear Putin aims to expand his global reach by forging stronger ties with China.
According to the South China Post, “Some Western analysts have viewed the recent, rapid enhancement of such collaboration as the beginning of a partnership set on destabilizing the U.S.-led world order and diminishing Washington’s capacity to influence strategic outcomes.”
Some in the Hillary Clinton campaign even fear that Russia will interfere in the upcoming U.S. election to try to block Hillary’s path to the White House. Russian hackers
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 5:25 pm
Despite CNN’s embarrassingly aberrant claims that Hillary Clinton dominated the final debate…
And continued and constant propaganda-peddling that the race is over because Trump’s sexual assauly allegations are “sucking all the air out of the room” compared to Hillary’s stream of WikiLeaks facts.
CNN made the mistaike of asking its focus group of real Americans who won the final debate… and instantly regretted it…
— Dan The Deplorable (@Daniel_Ohana) October 20, 2016
So when the CNN focus group was asked “did this debate help anyone make up their mind or possibly change their vote”, the results did not turn out how Goebbels they expected…
- 5 Clinton
- 10 Trump
- 0 3rd Party
- 6 Undecided
Lesson learned – don’t let ‘average joes’
Which might help explain this:
- CLINTON’S LEAD OVER TRUMP SLIPS TO 4 POINTS, FROM 7 POINTS LAST WEEK – REUTERS/IPSOS
It appears it is time for another ‘tweak’ to that polling methodology.
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 4:55 pm
After the first debate, numerous videos surfaced alleging that Hillary was using some sort of teleprompter built into her podium to assist with answering questions or to offset whatever medical condition she’s dealing with. The videos were largely dismissed as “cooky alt-right conspiracy theories” and didn’t get much attention outside of those spheres.
But, when similar abnormalities surfaced on Hillary’s podium in the third debate, combined with the fact that she spent an awkward amount of time during her answers peering down rather than at the camera, we grew a bit more curious.
With that said, here is a video analyzing the abnormalities from debate 1. Notice that around 18 seconds into this video one can very clearly see a light shut off on Hillary’s podium even though there is no such light at Trump’s podium.
But, you don’t have to take that guy’s word for it. Here is the actual debate footage from NBC...fast forward to the 1:38:30 mark at the very end of this video and you can see the exact same phenomenon.
And here is a screen capture from the end of the debate. Notice there is a light on Hillary’s podium while Trump’s is completely dark.
But where things get really interesting is that the exact same phenomenon occurred at debate 3 this week as pointed out by the following video posted by Anonymous.
Again, as you can see, there seems to be a light on Hillary’s podium…
…but none at Trump’s.
And here is one more angle…
And the two together…
But again, no need to take our word for it as you can simply scan through the full debate footage posted by USA Today and see the phenomenon for yourself. Also note that, at numerous points while answering questions throughout the debate, Hillary seems to be looking down at her podium for extended periods of time rather than at the camera…to the point that it was actually awkward for people watching the debate live.
Don’t believe it? In the following video, fast forward to the 42:25 mark and watch Hillary’s eyes as she responds to the question…where is she looking?
Now, recall that debate 2 was structured as a town hall discussion so this type of cheating
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 4:50 pm
It is time to revisit the Fiat Money Quantity (FMQ), which totals US dollar money deposited in the banking system, the commercial banks’ money on deposit at the Fed and physical cash.
Besides alerting us to how the expansion of fiat money is progressing, an objective of this exercise is to give some guidance on the price relationship with gold. It is particularly appropriate at a time when banking analysts have turned generally bearish, believing that the rally in gold is now over.
The idea behind FMQ is to define the quantity of fiat money, which can then be compared with the value of monetary gold, which is some or all of the above-ground stocks of physical gold. A fuller description of FMQ can be seen here. The long-term chart update is shown below.
The chart shows the long-term trend of FMQ growth established before the financial crisis, and the subsequent effect of the monetary measures introduced to rescue the banking system. This rapid expansion of FMQ warns us of the potential effect of monetary inflation on prices. Most of this is for the moment latent, because the expansion of FMQ has been mainly of bank reserves held on the Fed’s balance sheet, and therefore not currency in public circulation.
The last monthly data point is September 1, and the rise of FMQ is showing signs of accelerating again. Within that acceleration, there has been a fall in bank reserves held at the Fed from $2,786.9bn in August 2014, to $2,265.3bn. This is more than compensated for by a greater rise in customer deposits and savings accounts, from $9,006bn to $10,571bn. The worry, when the Fed created excess reserves mainly through quantitative easing, was that these would be one day used to fuel fractional reserve lending. The other side of bank credit is customer deposits and savings, so the fear originally expressed has come to pass.
The expansion of bank lending can also be detected in the next chart, which is of M2 money supply minus M1, which gives an approximation of bank credit.
In this chart, the expansion to above-trend growth started at the beginning of 2016. Between the two charts, we can confirm that both customer deposits and bank lending are accelerating above recently established
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 4:21 pm
Courtesy of George Washington
Things are nutty …
Hillary and the gang are trying to get us into war with Russia (and China?) …
The Fed continues to manipulate the markets …
We're being spied on by big gov …
Need a quick mental vacation?
Enjoy a few pics from my recent travels around Bali:
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 4:13 pm
While the recently unveiled Iraqi assault on Mosul (with US support) continues, in what some have speculated is an election stunt meant to liberate Mosul just ahead of the November 8 vote and provide a boost for the Hillary campaign, while others see even more ulterior motives, namely to “grant” ISIS fighters free passage out of Iraq and into Syria to fight Assad, there may be some complications. According to press reports citing Iraqi intelligence sources, today the Islamic State rounded up and killed 284 men and boys as Iraqi-led coalition forces closed in on Mosul, the terror group’s last major stronghold in Iraq.
Those killed Thursday and Friday were used as human shields against attacks forcing ISIS out of southern parts of Mosul, the source said. ISIS dumped the corpses in a mass grave at the defunct College of Agriculture in northern Mosul, the intelligence source said. The victims, including children, were all shot, said the source, who asked for anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the media. CNN could not independently confirm the killings.
Separately, according to Reuters, roughly 1,000 people had been treated for breathing problems linked to toxic gases from a sulphur plant which ISIS militants are suspected to have set on fire near the city of Mosul. No deaths were reported in connection with the incident, said the sources at the hospital in Qayyara, a town south of Mosul.
* * *
At the same time, in Russia’s latest public bid to preserve the Syrian status quo, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in televized remarks on Saturday that Assad needs to stay in power to prevent the country from falling into the hands of jihadis, and added that the entire territory of Syria must be “liberated,” dismissing demands for Syrian President Bashar Assad’s departure as “thoughtless.”
“There are just two options: Assad sitting in Damascus or the Nusra sitting in Damascus,” Peskov said in a reference to the Nusra Front, al-Qaida’s branch in Syria that renamed itself Fatah al-Sham Front earlier this year. “And Assad must sit in Damascus to ensure a political settlement.” The spokesman said the goal of the Russian campaign is to fight “terrorists,” saying that the fall of the Syrian government
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 3:40 pm
“Those who are capable of tyranny are capable of perjury to sustain it.” ? Lysander Spooner
We all know the BLS artificially suppresses the CPI through bullshit substitution adjustments, quality adjustments, and various other incomprehensible hedonic adjustments made by government apparatchiks at the behest of their politician bosses. Some obscure theoretical academic calculation called owners equivalent rent accounts for almost a quarter of the CPI weighting.
It has no relation to reality as it has increased by only 12% since 2012, while the Case Shiller Housing Price Index is up 52% over the same time frame. The median price of existing home sales is up 30% over the same time frame. It also has no relation to rent increases, as they have gone up 22% nationally since 2012. It’s essentially a made up number by goal seeking bureaucrats doing the bidding of their establishment masters.
Prior to Greenspan and his cronies getting their grubby little non-callused academic hands on it in the 1980s, CPI reflected measuring the cost of maintaining a constant standard of living, as measured by a fixed-basket of goods. The purpose of all these adjustments and calculations has been to systematically repress the reported level of inflation as a way to keep the Social Security system solvent, allow the Federal Reserve to keep interest rates falsely lower for their banking cartel owners and the biggest debtor on the planet – the U.S. government, and to conceal from the average American how far their standard of living has fallen. It ain’t working.
The average household might not know real median household income is at the same level it was in 1989, but they know they are treading water on a daily basis – using credit cards to sustain themselves while paying 15% interest to the Wall Street banking cartel.
They know their wages are stagnant and their every day costs relentlessly rise. Real hourly wages, using the fake CPI, are up just 1.4% in the past year. In reality, using an accurate measure of inflation, real wages are falling. The government can tell them inflation is only up 1.5% in the last year, but they know better. Their real everyday inflation is north of 4%, as measured before the 1990 coverup began. Now,
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 3:05 pm
We have written frequently about the internal Clinton Foundation power struggle between Chelsea Clinton and Doug Band over the previous couple of weeks (see here, here and here). It all started back in 2011 when, as Chelsea started to take a more senior role at the Clinton Foundation, she became increasingly concerned about an internal audit that exposed glaring conflicts of interest throughout the Foundation with an emphasis on Doug Band and his company, Teneo, who she thought had inappropriately sought favors from the State Department during Hillary’s tenure as Secretary of State. A Politico article from March 2015, summarized Chelsea’s rise at the Foundation and how it threatened some long-time Clinton allies who had grown quite accustomed to the status quo.
But Chelsea Clinton’s rise at times has seemed to threaten some veteran Clinton aides who had carved out influential—and lucrative—positions after long service with her parents. She is blamed in some quarters for marginalizing both Lindsey and Doug Band, who rose from the president’s body man to build and help run the foundation’s Clinton Global Initiative. A third Clinton veteran, Ira Magaziner, saw his portfolio at the foundation diminished during Braverman’s tenure, and sources say Magaziner’s role remains under scrutiny.
Now, new WikiLeaks emails reveal additional details behind the the man, Eric Braverman, who was brought in as CEO by Chelsea to change the controversial practices of the Foundation but abruptly resigned a short time later after being pushed out by long-time Clinton loyalists who had apparently grown very comfortable with the status quo.
Below is the new email exchange which begins when Neera Tanden warns John Podesta to “keep tabs on Doug Band” who she assumed was the insider who told NBC to “follow the money and find the real HRC scandal.” Interestingly, John Podesta writes back quickly to identify the real source as former Clinton Foundation CEO Eric Braverman which seems to be shocking to Tanden who replies simply, “Holy Moses.”
So who is Eric Braverman? The following excerpts from a Politico article offer the best summary of Braverman and his efforts, as a newly installed CEO, to breakup the Clinton
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 2:30 pm
At a campaign rally for Hillary Clinton on Thursday in Miami Gardens, Fla., President Obama condemned Donald Trump’s “rigged election” claims, describing these remarks as “dangerous.”
“When you try to sow the seeds of doubt in people’s minds about the legitimacy of our election, that undermines our democracy,” he said.
“When you suggest rigging or fraud without a shred of evidence, when last night at the debate, Trump becomes the first major party nominee in American history to suggest that he will not concede despite losing…that is not a joking matter,” Obama added.
Trump said at the third presidential debate that he would keep the United States “in suspense” as to whether he would accept the election results. Later, at a campaign rally, he promised in a jesting manner that he would accept the results “if I win” as the crowd roared.
But despite condemning Trump for suggesting an election can be rigged, here is a clip of then-candidate Barack Obama in 2008 warning about voter fraud and suggesting Republicans could try to sway the election in their favor.
A female audience member asked… “I would just like to know what you can do to reassure us that this election will not be rigged or stolen?” Obama replies…
“Well, I tell you what it helps in Ohio, that we got Democrats in charge of the machines,” Obama said regarding the threat of election-rigging.
He continued, “Whenever people are in power, they have this tendency to try to tilt things in their direction. That’s why we’ve got to have, I believe, a voting rights division in the Justice Department that is nonpartisan, and that is serious about investigating cases of voter fraud.”
“That’s why we need paper trails on these new electronic machines so that you actually have something that you can hang on to after you’ve punched that letter—make sure it hasn’t been hacked into,” he added, admitting that even Democrats have “monkeyed around” with election results:
“I want to be honest, it’s not as if it’s just Republicans who have monkeyed around with elections in the past. Sometimes, Democrats have, too.”
Sounds pretty “dangerous” and “democracy threatening” to us?
by Zero Hedge - October 22nd, 2016 1:59 pm
As had been leaked over the past two days, moments ago the WSJ confirmed that AT&T has agreed to buy Time Warner in a deal worth more than $80 billion, or between $105 and $110 per share, with the transaction set to be announced “as soon as Saturday evening.”
The boards of the two companies are meeting on Saturday to approve the transaction, the WSJ said citing people familiar. The $80BN deal is half cash and half stock. The transaction brings together millions of AT&T wireless and pay-TV subscribers – recall AT&T’s most recent mega deal was its $50 billion acquisition of DirectTV – with Time Warner’s dep content and media lineup, including networks such as CNN, TNT, the cash cash that is HBO and Warner Bros. film and TV studio.
The transaction would be far and away the biggest media deal of recent years. Time Warner had a market capitalization of $68 billion before The Wall Street Journal reported on the advanced talks Friday, while AT&T’s was $233 billion. AT&T has been shifting its sights to media and video in recent years, diving deeper into television after its nearly $50 billion deal to acquire satellite television provider DirecTV last year. That made AT&T, which traces its roots to the old ‘Ma Bell, the country’s biggest pay television provider as well as its second-largest wireless operator.
As the WSJ writes, “the acquisition is valued at more than $80 billion and pushes the carrier deeper into the traditional entertainment business at a time of stalled wireless growth.” The good news for Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes, is that by rebuffing a takeover bid from 21st Century Fox two years ago for $85 a share, he has managed to generate another 30% in upside to shareholders all thanks to an epic scramble for yield, which is what will make this deal possible.
This latest megamerger would be the most ambitious marriage of content and distribution in the media and telecom industries since Comcast Corp.’s purchase of NBCUniversal and would create a behemoth to rival that cable giant. A rigorous regulatory review is expected and the acquisition of Time Warner likely wouldn’t close until late 2017, people close to the process said.
Regulators have indicated misgivings about the prior