Posts Tagged ‘CURRENCY WARS’

Currency Wars: Debase, Default, Deny!

Currency Wars: Debase, Default, Deny! 

Hiker pausing at fork in path

Courtesy of Gordon T Long of Tipping Points

In September 2008 the US came to a fork in the road. The Public Policy decision to not seize the banks, to not place them in bankruptcy court with the government acting as the Debtor-in-Possession (DIP), to not split them up by selling off the assets to successful and solvent entities, set the world on the path to global currency wars.

By lowering interest rates and effectively guaranteeing a weak dollar through undisciplined fiscal policy, the US ignited an almost riskless global US$ Carry Trade and triggered an uncontrolled Currency War with the mercantilist, export driven Asian economies. We are now debasing the US dollar with reckless spending and money printing with the policies of Quantitative Easing (QE) and the expectations of QE II. Both are nothing more than effectively defaulting on our obligations to sound money policy and a “strong US$”. Meanwhile with a straight face we deny that this is our intention. 

It’s called debase, default and deny.

Though prior to the 2008 financial crisis our largest banks had become casino like speculators with public money lacking in fiduciary responsibility, our elected officials bailed them out. Our leadership placed America and the world unknowingly (knowingly?) on a preordained destructive path because it was politically expedient and the easiest way out of a difficult predicament. By kicking the can down the road our political leadership, like the banks, avoided their fiduciary responsibility. Similar to a parent wanting to be liked and a friend to their children they avoided the difficult discipline that is required at certain critical moments in life. The discipline to make America swallow a needed pill. The discipline to ask Americans to accept a period of intense adjustment. A period that by now would be starting to show signs of success versus the abyss we now find ourselves staring into.  A future that is now significantly worse and with potentially fatal pain still to come.

Unemployed Americans, the casualties of the financial crisis wrought by the banks, witness the same banks declaring record earnings while these banks refuse to lend. When the banks once more are caught with their fingers in the cookie jar with falsified robo-signing mortgage title fraud, they again look for the compliant parent to look the other way. Meanwhile the US debt levels and spending associated with protecting these failed…
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Currency Wars: Misguided US Economic Policy

Courtesy of Gordon T. Long of Tipping Points

Currency Wars: Misguided US Economic Policy

The critical issues in America stem from minimally a blatantly ineffective public policy, but overridingly a failed and destructive Economic Policy. These policy errors are directly responsible for the opening salvos of the Currency War clouds now looming overhead.

Don’t be fooled for a minute. The issue of Yuan devaluation is a political distraction from the real issue – a failure of US policy leadership. In my opinion the US Fiscal and Monetary policies are misguided. They are wrong! I wrote a 66 page thesis paper entitled “Extend & Pretend” in the fall of 2009 detailing why the proposed Keynesian policy direction was flawed and why it would fail. I additionally authored a full series of articles from January through August in a broadly published series entitled “Extend & Pretend” detailing the predicted failures as they unfolded. Don’t let anyone tell you that what has happened was not fully predictable!

Now after the charade of Extend & Pretend has run out of momentum and more money printing is again required through Quantitative Easing (we predicted QE II was inevitable in March), the responsible US politicos have cleverly ignited the markets with QE II money printing euphoria in the run-up to the mid-term elections. Craftily they are taking political camouflage behind an “undervalued Yuan” as the culprit for US problems. Remember, patriotism is the last bastion of scoundrels

An unusual Wall Street Op-ed piece appeared Wednesday October 13th , written by Yiping Huang, a Professor of Economics – China Center for Economic Research at the prestigious Peking University. He called for common sense from Americans and the G20 regarding the potential for destructive currency wars:

“The upcoming Group of 20 summit in Seoul could become a battlefield of this new conflict. But it doesn’t have to be. Rather than focus on currency manipulation, all sides would be better served to zero in on structural reforms. The effects of that would be far more beneficial in the long run than unilateral U.S. currency action, and more sustainable. …  it would be much better for the G-20 to focus on a comprehensive package centered on structural reforms in all countries. Exchange rates should be an important part of that package. For instance, to reduce the U.S. current-account deficits, Americans have to save more.


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Runaway Feedback Loops, Wealth Concentration and Gaming-The-System

Runaway Feedback Loops, Wealth Concentration and Gaming-The-System

Courtesy of Charles Hugh Smith, Of Two Minds

Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador, iceberg in ocean

Positive feedback loops soon reach the runaway/self-destruction stage. Concentrations of wealth and gaming-the-system are reaching just such levels.

Positive feedback loops lead to runaway scenarios. The classic example is global warming and the Arctic ice cap. As temperatures rise, the the ice melts, exposing more land or seawater. Ice reflects solar radiation, and so as it shrinks then more solar radiation is absorbed, raising temperatures more, which melts the ice faster, which then leads to more solar radiation being absorbed, and so on.

The runaway feedback loop leads to the disappearance of the Arctic ice and a much warmer planet.

Nature has multiple feedback loops, and so the solar radiation flux may be acting to reduce temperatures as the positive feedback of melting ice raises temperatures. But the point is that positive feedback is self-reinforcing and it speeds up processes as it gathers momentum.

We can see runaway feedback loops in the economy and society, not just in Nature. One of the key runaway feedbacks in the U.S. is the concentration of wealth and political power.

As wealth has become concentrated in the top 1/10th of 1%, then the political power that can be purchased with that wealth also rises, which then enables the wealthy to increase their wealth via "Federal entrepreneurship" and other means.

The political process--once potentially a force resisting or moderating wealth--has been completely captured by an ever-expanding army of lobbyists, the fast-spinning revolving door between the Central State and corporations and unprecedented levels of corporate/Elites campaign contributions.

The judiciary, theoretically a force which could have resisted this concentration of wealth and political power, has also been co-opted by a marriage of ideology and wealth/power. Thus the courts have gutted every attempt at limiting corporate/insider influence over the processes of governance; the courts have enabled corporations to have the "right to free (paid) speech" unburdened by the obligations that go with such rights.

The wealth/power feedback has reached runaway levels. "Reforms" are gutted in backroom deals, votes to benefit the banking/mortgage/foreclosure industry are done on voice calls to evade public scrutiny, and a thousand other games and tricks are played daily to subvert the common good for the benefit of the few and their armies of technocrat toadies.

The other positive feedback loop approaching runaway levels is the Entitlement/Welfare State, both
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Double Dip Est Arrivé: Institutional Risk Analyst

Double Dip Est Arrivé: Institutional Risk Analyst

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

Chris Whalen of Institutional Risk Analyst has this interesting interview on CNBC, sent to me by a reader.

I have not watched that television channel in some years, finding their shallowness and hypocrisy too much to bear. Of course my refuge, Bloomberg Television, has lowered its standards so much, with spokesmodels and smirking chimps, that it may have achieved parity. Are Cramer, Kudlow and Kernan still kicking? Remarkable.

This is an interesting exposition of the currency wars, and the pandering to the big financial institutions by the Fed over the past fifteen years, ultimately at the expense of the real economy in the distortions and misallocation of capital which the financial engineers have fostered.

Here is the interview with Jim Rickards to which Chris alludes.

Chris Whalen sounds like me. I wonder if he can cook? 

 


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Bullion Denominated in Euros, Pounds and Swiss Francs At New Record Highs as the IMF Prepares for a Currency Crisis

Bullion Denominated in Euros, Pounds and Swiss Francs At New Record Highs as the IMF Prepares for a Currency Crisis

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

What many traders are starting to realize is that the precious metals plunged with stocks in the recent market dislocation in 2008 because it was a ‘liquidity crisis’ among private institutions triggered by the credit unworthiness of individuals that provoked a general selling of assets.

What we are experiencing now is a sovereign debt (credit worthiness) crisis, which is really a currency crisis. A fiat currency is backed by nothing except the ‘full faith and credit’ of the issuer. It is not that it would have to be ‘different this time’ as some would think. It’s not even the same thing, a different type of a crisis entirely.

The markets are assessing the risks of various currencies and countries with regard to default. Gold, and to some lesser extent silver bullion, are wealth that is sufficient to itself, requiring no backing from any particular country. Quite the opposite, there are large short positions and highly leveraged paper commitments, that present significant counterparty risk to the upside, because it is unlikely to be deliverable at anything near current prices.

Regulators have long turned a blind eye to what some contend are officially sanctioned shenanigans and secretive leasing and selling. This is becoming increasingly difficult for the central banks to manage, and we may approach a breaking point unless the financial engineers and politicians can head it off once again. They have a strong vested interest in hiding their past dealings, as we saw in the case of Mr. Gordon Brown in the UK.

If there is a new panic selloff, all assets will again be liquidated in the short term, including the metals. But their rebound may be quite sharp and potentially rewarding if the sovereign debt crisis continues, since the search for safe havens will be even more aggressive, as the seats in the shelters are quickly taken.

This is why the IMF is meeting in Zurich on May 11, ahead of the formal discussions scheduled later this year to discuss the reweighting of the SDR. There is a currency crisis on the horizon, and it may involve not only the PIIGS, but the larger developing countries including the US and the UK. And they are preparing contingency plans, and seeking to head it off.

I do…
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Currency Wars

Currency Wars

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

"In his latest letter, Mylchreest reckons we are now in the ‘Third Gold War’ since the Second World War and this is being waged between the USA in conjunction with other western countries/institutions, notably the IMF, and various opposing sectors worldwide. In his contention, the U.S. and its allies lost the first of these ‘gold wars’ to the French (then under De Gaulle) and the second to the Middle East, helped significantly by the then pro-gold stance and purchasing power of the German Deutsche Bank .

This latest Gold War has been/is being fought covertly. "High profile sales of physical gold have, for the most part, been replaced by sales of "paper gold" in the form of futures, OTC options and unallocated gold, etc." asserts Mylchreest. But this time he reckons the veil has been lifted and the whole charade is beginning to unravel. Instead of France or Arab nations, the opponent this time is China – the 800 pound gorilla – potentially an even more formidable opponent, with a huge treasury of trillions of dollars with which to back its moves. It’s not just that it is the Chinese government which is the major participant, but also now that gold and silver ownership is being promoted to the populace there by government institutions, there is the huge pent-up, and growing interest in precious metals of the rapidly increasing Chinese middle class and its potential to affect the global demand patterns."

China: the Gorilla in the Third Gold War, Lawrence Williams

The gold war as described above is just one front in a greater and more general ‘currency war’ that is evolving as the empire of ‘the US dollar as the reserve currency,’ which has been in place since the end of WW II, declines and finally falls in the profligacy and crony capitalism of the Federal Reserve Bank and the Treasury.

This battle may manifest itself more publicly later this year in the debate over the reconstitution of the basket of currencies that the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights (SDR) will contain.

What Will Be the New World Reserve Currency

Russia Calls for Changes to the SDR

The SDR may not be the successor to the dollar hegemony in the short term. The BRICs may lobby hard enough to legitimize it,…
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Currency Wars: Markets Shudder on Downgrade of Spain

Currency Wars: Markets Shudder on Downgrade of Spain

Spanish bullfighter David Fandila El Fandi performs a pass to a bull during a bullfight at the Maestranza bullring in Seville

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

There was unusually heavy put buying yesterday in NY markets on the Spanish stock index ETF.

Last month a group of US hedge funds were investigated for collusion in planning short selling assaults on the euro. Having exhausted the developing world, which has largely tossed them out, have the economic hitmen finally turned on the developing world as we forecast in 2005 that they would?

This is not to say that Greece, Portugal, or Spain are without problems or fault. There is a general crisis in many of the developed country fiat currencies, including the United States. The rising price of gold and silver, despite the heavy handed manipulation by a few of the banking centers, is a sure sign of a flight from paper controlled by central banks.

The US financial interests have been shown to exercise a disconcerting amount of control over the three US-based Ratings Agencies. I wonder how long it will be before any of the US states will have their credit ratings downgraded, and how those attacks might be structured. I am sure the government would then act to curtail their naked shorting and market manipulation activity.

As the NY based stock tout crowed on Bloomberg this morning, "The US can inflate its way out of this crisis much more easily than can any other country." Well, it is an advantage to own the printing press, and to control key elements of the global financial system.

And it makes one wonder how long the economic predators will be given free rein by the co-opted regulatory agencies and government in the US, which cannot even pass a motion to debate financial reform to the floor of its Senate. I would suggest that the debate, even when it moves forward, will not produce anything sufficient to promote a sustainable recovery. That is why this debate must move now to the floors of Parliaments and legislative bodies in the rest of the world. And there has to be much more openness compelled from their central banks with regard to private dealings with the US Federal Reserve. It is now a matter of national priority. 

Wall Street Journal
Euro Drops To New One-Year Low On Spain Downgrade
By Bradley Davis
April 28, 2010

NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--The euro dropped to a


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Politics

TRUMP CONCEDES (SORT OF)

 

TRUMP CONCEDES (SORT OF)

Courtesy of Teri Kanefield

The Trump Legal team filed more documents today in the appellate court. I tweeted a bit about how silly they were (let me know if you all want me to march through them). Then this happened:

Trump giving the go-ahead for the transition to get underway was (I believe) the closest he will get to conceding the election. Two amusing things happened. First, Trump tweeted this about 10 minutes after Emily Murphy submitted a letter saying she would move forward, and that she has made her decisions solely on her own and not at anyone’s direction. Looks like Trump wanted people to think that she was, in fact, acting at his direction.

The other amusing part was that Tr...



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Phil's Favorites

TRUMP CONCEDES (SORT OF)

 

TRUMP CONCEDES (SORT OF)

Courtesy of Teri Kanefield

The Trump Legal team filed more documents today in the appellate court. I tweeted a bit about how silly they were (let me know if you all want me to march through them). Then this happened:

Trump giving the go-ahead for the transition to get underway was (I believe) the closest he will get to conceding the election. Two amusing things happened. First, Trump tweeted this about 10 minutes after Emily Murphy submitted a letter saying she would move forward, and that she has made her decisions solely on her own and not at anyone’s direction. Looks like Trump wanted people to think that she was, in fact, acting at his direction.

The other amusing part was t...



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ValueWalk

Proposed Klamath River Dams Removal: The Height Of Obtuse Thinking?

By William E. Simpson II. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Considering the recent revelations as published in several California newspapers regarding the Klamath River dams removal proposal, many important questions arise to those who are using logic to examine the fishy-reasoning for considering the removal of several perfectly good dams.

Q3 2020 hedge fund letters, conferences and more

Photo: William E. Simpson II: CAL-FIRE tanker trucks and helicopters dr...

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Zero Hedge

As Oil Soars, Former NHL Player Turned Hedge Fund Manager Says "Inevitable" It Will Go Higher

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Update (1100ET): WTI jyust broke above $45 as today's move goes vertical. This is the highest price for oil since March, which is interesting given that Cushing storage is near capacity...

*  *  *

If you're bullish on oil, we've got good news and bad news. The good news is that one hedge fund manager is finally taking an outsized bet on oil and is making headlines...



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Biotech/COVID-19

Why the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine is now a global game changer

 

Why the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine is now a global game changer

Courtesy of Michael Head, University of Southampton

In the long dark tunnel that has been 2020, November stands out as the month that light appeared. Some might see it as a bright light, others as a faint light – but it is unmistakably a light.

On November 9, Pfizer announced the interim results of its candidate vaccine, showing it to be “more than 90% effective” in preventing symptomatic COVID-19 in late-stage human trials. The news was greeted with joy.

A ...



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Chart School

Bitcoin Chart Review

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Bitcoin is testing its old all time high. Bitcoin is not alone as it is at the same party of all risk on trends. Abundant end of year liquidity, add the relief of finishing US elections will see the end of the buyers strike and gains should continue (just like 2016).

Bitcoin is on fourth types of charts held within readtheticker.com, each chart answers different questions.

Charts ...

Cycle charts shows off price and time cycles, with forecasts.


Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.




Long term channels, with time and price targets.


Click f...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Transports Sending Strong Bullish Message To Other Dow Indices?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Are Transportation stocks about to send a quality bullish message to other Dow indices this month? Sure could be!

This 3-pack looks at the Dow Jones Industrials, Transports, and Utilities indices on a monthly basis.

One week from the end of a month, the DJ Transports are attempting an important bullish breakout at (1). Unless a sharp reversal takes place in the next week, Transports could close out the month at new monthly closing highs!

The Dow is attempting to close at all-time highs this month, while the Dow Utilities Index remains a few percent below 2020 highs....



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Digital Currencies

Dalio Admits "I Might Be Missing Something" As Bitcoin Surges Above $18,000

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

Since the US election, Bitcoin prices (in USD) have surged a stunning 40%, also lurching higher after each vaccine headline hit.

Source: Bloomberg

Getting ever closer to its all-time record high...

Source: Bloomberg

As crypto prices soared overnight, Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio stepped back into the fray, saying in a Twitter thread that “I might be missing something about Bitco...



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Mapping The Market

COVID-19 Forces More Than Half of Asset Management Firms to Accelerate Adoption of Digital Marketing Technology

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

There is no doubt that the use of technology to support client engagement initiatives brings both opportunities and threats but this has been brought into sharp focus this year with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The crisis has brought to the fore the need for firms to enable flexibility in client engagement – the expectation that providers will communicate to clients on their terms, at their speed and frequency and on their preferred channels, is now a given. This is even more critical when clients are experiencing unparalleled anxiety from both market conditions and their own personal circumstances.

...

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The Technical Traders

Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling System Suggests Market Peak May Be Near

Courtesy of Technical Traders

Our Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling system is suggesting a moderate price peak may be already setting up in the NASDAQ while the Dow Jones, S&P500, and Transportation Index continue to rally beyond the projected Fibonacci Price Expansion Levels.  This indicates that capital may be shifting away from the already lofty Technology sector and into Basic Materials, Financials, Energy, Consumer Staples, Utilities, as well as other sectors.

This type of a structural market shift indicates a move away from speculation and towards Blue Chip returns. It suggests traders and investors are expecting the US consumer to come back strong (or at least hold up the market at...



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Lee's Free Thinking

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia - The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

 

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia – The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

Courtesy of Lee Adler, WallStreetExaminer 

The numbers of new cases in some of the hardest hit COVID19 states have started to plateau, or even decline, over the past few days. A few pundits have noted it and concluded that it was a hopeful sign. 

Is it real or is something else going on? Like a restriction in the numbers of tests, or simply the inability to test enough, or are some people simply giving up on getting tested? Because as we all know from our dear leader, the less testing, the less...



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Insider Scoop

Economic Data Scheduled For Friday

Courtesy of Benzinga

  • Data on nonfarm payrolls and unemployment rate for March will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • US Services Purchasing Managers' Index for March is scheduled for release at 9:45 a.m. ET.
  • The ISM's non-manufacturing index for March will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the latest week is scheduled for release at 1:00 p.m. ET.
...

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Promotions

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Phil will discuss positions, COVID-19, market volatility -- the selloff -- and more! 

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