Posts Tagged ‘Jesse’s Americain Cafe’

The Marriage of Mercantilism and Corporatism: When Free Trade Is Not ‘Free’

The Marriage of Mercantilism and Corporatism: When Free Trade Is Not ‘Free’

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

"The consequences of this policy are also stark and simple: in effect, China is taxing imports while subsidizing exports, feeding a huge trade surplus. You may see claims that China’s trade surplus has nothing to do with its currency policy; if so, that would be a first in world economic history. An undervalued currency always promotes trade surpluses, and China is no different." Paul Krugman

And he is exactly right. As regular readers know this matter of Chinese mercantilism and its toleration and acceptance by the West has been a key observation and objection here since 2000. Any economist who does not understand that devaluing and then maintaining an artificially low currency peg with a trading partner distorts the nature of that trade should review their knowledge of algebra.

And yet it was in 1994 during the Clinton Administration that China was permitted to obtain full trading partner "Most Favored Nation" status, while vaguely promising to float their recently devalued currency some day, and address the human rights issues that were endogenous to their non-democratic, totalitarian government.

"From 1981 to 1993 there were six major devaluations in China. Their amounts ranged from 9.6 percent to 44.9 percent, and the official exchange rate went from 2.8 yuan per U.S. dollar to 5.32 yuan per U.S. dollar. On January 1, 1994, China unified the two-tier exchange rates by devaluing the official rate to the prevailing swap rate of 8.7 yuan per U.S. dollar." Sonia Wong, China’s Export Growth

This served Mr. Clinton’s constituents in Bentonville quite well, and has some interesting implications for the Chinese campaign contributions scandals. It supported the Rubin doctrine of a ‘strong dollar’ while facilitating the financialization of the US economy and the continuing decline of the middle class wage earners, under pressue to surrender a standard of living achieved at great cost. "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Currency Collapse." and China’s Mercantilism: Selling Them the Rope

Not to limit this, George W. ratified the arrangement when he took office, and so it has gone on for almost fifteen years…
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Note to Mish: The BLS Added About 145,897 Imaginary Jobs to the Non-Farm Payrolls Headline Number

Note to Mish: The BLS Added About 145,897 Imaginary Jobs to the Non-Farm Payrolls Headline Number

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

I like Mish Shedlock. He has intellectual integrity, and even when we occasionally disagree, as I recall over the inevitability of deflation and some of its particular consequences and manifestations, I listen to his arguments carefully. He draws conclusions that are difficult to fault. Most of the time we seem to be in agreement.

In his most recent blog, he indirectly poses an interesting question.

"Hidden beneath the surface the BLS Black Box – Birth Death Model added 145,000 jobs. However, as I have pointed out many times before, the Birth/Death numbers cannot be subtracted straight up to get a raw number. It contributed to this month’s employment total for sure, but the BLS will not disclose by how much."

Mish Shedlock, Jobs Decrease by 125,000

Here are the Imaginary Jobs added to the Non Farm Payrolls from the Birth Death Model of the BLS. As Mish reminds us, (thank you Mish. I have been nagging bloggers about this for years), the Imaginary Jobs are added to the unadjusted payroll numbers, which are dramatically impacted by the seasonal adjustments, which are sometimes quite significant.

I include this second chart show the Birth – Death numbers over time to show the historical trend. It is remarkable how ‘regular’ this number has been over the past six years despite an epic recession that devastated small businesses, which is purportedly what this model tracks.

Here is a visual depiction of the Seasonally Adjusted and the Unadjusted Non-Farm Payroll Numbers. As you can see, the adjustment is sometimes very significant. Remember, the Birth Death imaginary jobs are added to the unadjusted number, which is indicated in maroon on this chart.

So obviously one can calculate the ‘seasonality factor’ using a simple formula

Seasonality Factor (SF) = Seasonally Adjusted Number (SA) / Non-Seasonally Adjusted Number (NSA)

I do this each month in the Payrolls Spreadsheet that I maintain. I like to see if the BLS changes its calculations and assumptions over time, especially when they do major revisions.

And although I have never shown it in this blog before, it is relatively…
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Keiser Report No.19: Markets! Finance! Scandal! – And Karl Denninger

Keiser Report No.19: Markets! Finance! Scandal! – And Karl Denninger

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

Although I don’t always agree with them, obviously, I am always interested, informed, and entertained by what madcap Max Keiser and his cerebral colleague Stacy Herbert have to say on The Keiser Report. As you may know, Max is the latest American in Paris, having left the States after selling his Hollywood Stock Exchange to Cantor Fitzgerald of Wall Street. Perhaps some day we can have a drink at the Ritz and philosophize, as expatriates are often wont to do, about the tragic transience of empire. The Ritz. Alas, when I was a visiting student at ESSEC I could not afford it, and now that I can, I do not get out much anymore. But who can tell what the future may bring.

The most recent broadcast of the Keiser Report has an added attraction in its second half, Karl Denninger. Karl is probably more familiar to our American patrons as theoutre financial commentator from The Market Ticker.

Karl always has something interesting to say, spoken plainly, and without the kind of courtly manner towards corporate America that is so fashionable among the journalists in the mainstream media who are members of the Wall Street demimonde.

Mr. Denninger is particularly effective, when he gets it right as he frequently does, in describing complex transactions because he is not an economist or a financial professional, but a computer engineer, an honest technical sort, who brings some formidable analytical skills to a relatively unfamiliar subject. He often gets ‘nit-picked’ by the pros who play word games with their jargon, but more often than not he is directionally correct.

And he occasionally admits it when he is wrong, and changes tack, a refreshing trait amongst the greater universe of financial commentators. But if you post on his chat board, be prepared for ideological frisking, and little patience for deviation from the local standards and fundamental assumptions. A weakness perhaps, from the perspective of ideological diversity, but more common than most moderators care to admit.

Enjoy.

 

Bonus post by Jesse at the Cafe, 

How Bad Can It Get?

They have our money. What more can they want?

 


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Alternative View: Housing Prices Have Fallen Significantly Towards the Trend

Update by Jesse at the Cafe regarding housing prices. Glad to see I’m not the only person who struggled with the flu vaccine dilemma. To avoid the mercury, there’s FluMist, with the added attraction of delivering the (attenuated) virus via the natural route, through the respiratory system, rather than injected directly into the blood. It’s not recommended for those with asthma, however. Currently, the swine flu vaccine is not available in my city, but I did manage to track down the seasonal vaccine for a couple loved ones. The seasonal flu vaccine appears to afford some protection against swine flu. Nothing available for me, however, making my indecision rather besides the point for the time being. 

Best wishes for a speedy recovery with no notable residual brain damage, Jesse.  - Ilene

Alternative View: Housing Prices Have Fallen Significantly Towards the Trend

Courtesy of Jesse’s Café Américain

Here is the graph associated with a view of the deflating housing bubble that shows we have appreciably fallen, further than the 25% in the blog entry from yesterday.

For the details on this view read here.

It appears that both sets of numbers, the ones above and the ones from yesterday, have been adjusted somewhat.

The numbers from yesterday are Indexed to 1980 = 100, and are therefore a percentage of increase.

The numbers above are nominal prices, and then adjusted for inflation using some governmental measure presumably.

One appears to be based on median prices, and the other on total transactions.

I have not yet reconciled the two views, as I am rather tired and ‘under the weather,’ compliments of the children’s propensity to bring home their sniffles and sneezes at this time of year, the head colds that seem to linger endlessly, despite the repeated application of vitamins, chicken soup, sudafed, ibuprofen, and the occasional sip of Beaujolais Noveau. But for today at least I am, like Mr. Buffett is to the economic recovery, ‘all in.’

And yes, I did finally break down and listen to the spouse, obtaining a swine flu vaccination. Perhaps the mental slowness is merely due to my mercuy addled brain. Perhaps it will help me think like a Fed banker and figure out their gameplan. lol.

 


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Long Term Weekly Gold Chart Targets 1275

If you missed my enlightening interview with Jesse, click here. – Ilene

Long Term Weekly Gold Chart Targets 1275

Courtesy of Jesse’s Café Américain 

Now that gold seems to have successfully broken out from its continuation pattern (ascending triangle or inverse H&S) we should be able to chart its targets more precisely than the chart from 24 September that at least successfully projected the breakout.

If there is a major liquidation event, such as an equity market dislocation, gold will likely be hit as well, but will provide an exceptionaly buying opportunity and would historically rebound more sharply than equities and most other investments.

As always, this is a forecast with some probablities of success, rather than a prediction. It will therefore be subject to change, and will meet with a variety of success, or not.

Basically, the ascending triangle calls out 1275 and an inverse H&S targets 1300ish. A confirmed breakdown below 1000 deactivates the formations. We will know more about the first pullback when we see how far this current leg goes. It has moved much more quickly so far than most have imagined, but the short term trend is quite apparent on the chart.

gold chart

 


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Zero Hedge

Russia's Only Aircraft Carrier Has Erupted In Flames

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

According to TASS News and social media footage, a fire has erupted onboard Russia's only aircraft carrier, Admiral Kuznetsov, at a naval dock in Murmansk, northwest Russia. The aircraft carrier was undergoing repairs and maintenance when fuel tanks caught fire.

RT News...



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Phil's Favorites

The British election explained in five key phrases

 

The British election explained in five key phrases

Courtesy of Veronika Koller, Lancaster University

The UK government’s decision to hold its third general election since 2015 is a baffling one to many – including the weary voters who have to take part.

Tensions have been high as the country attempts to resolve the identity crisis first sparked by the Brexit vote in 2016. It’s a complicated moment for the nation and, at times like these, it can help to observe the big issues through the lens of language. The slogans and terms that get thrown around again and again during a campaign can often tell us a lot about the bigger picture. Here are five such slogans that can help explain what’s happening in the UK right now.

‘Get Br...

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Digital Currencies

Three Men Arrested In NJ For Running Alleged $722 Million Crypto Ponzi Scheme

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by Kollen Post via CoinTelegraph.com,

United States authorities in New Jersey have announced the arrest of three men who are accused of defrauding investors of over $722 million as part of alleged crypto ponzie scheme BitClub Network, per a Dec. 10 announcement from the Dep...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Is Freeport McMoRan (FCX) Making A Run For the "Gold"?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Mining company Freeport McMoRan NYSE: FCX is enjoying the tailwind from a strong year for gold and silver prices. And although Copper prices are down, Copper has been turning up lately.

This has helped Freeport’s stock price recover in 2019 and has FCX testing a key breakout level.

Below is a “weekly” chart of Freeport McMoRan (FCX). The shaded channel outlined by each (1) highlights the longer-term downtrend that FCX has been stuck in.

But this could change on a dime, especially if FCX can breakout above (2). This area represents its re...



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Insider Scoop

Economic Data Scheduled For Wednesday

Courtesy of Benzinga

  • The MBA's index of mortgage application activity for the latest week is schedule for release at 7:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Consumer Price Index for November will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • The Census Bureau quarterly services survey report for the third quarter is schedule for release at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Atlanta Fed's Business Inflation Expectations survey report for December will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Energy Information Administration’s weekly report on petroleum inventories in the U.S. is schedule for release at 10:30 a.m. ET.
  • The Federal Open Market Committee will announce its policy decision at 2:00 p.m. ET.
  • The U.S. Treasury budget report for November will be released at 2:00 p.m. ET.
  • ...


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Lee's Free Thinking

Chart Shows the Fed Ramping Up Not QE - Funding Almost All Treasury Issuance

 

Chart Shows the Fed Ramping Up Not QE – Funding Almost All Treasury Issuance

Courtesy of Lee Adler, Wall Street Examiner 

The Fed is ramping up “Not QE” .

The Fed bought $2.2 billion in notes today in its POMO, “not QE,” operations. Actually $2.15 billion because they sold back a whole $50 million. Must have been a little glitch in the force.

This brings the Fed’s total outright purchases of Treasuries to $170 billion since it started Not QE, on September 17.

It also did $107 billion in gross new repo loans to Primary Dealers to buy Tre...



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Chart School

Silver stock taking the sector higher

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

As the US economy begins to show late cycle characteristics like: GDP slowing, higher inflation, higher wage costs, CEO confidence slump. 
Previous Post: Gold Stocks Review

The big players in the market are looking for the next swing off good value lows. This means more money is finding it way into the gold and silver sector, and it is said gold and silver stocks actually lead the metal prices. The cycle below shows prices are ready to move in the months ahead (older chart re posted).




 

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Members' Corner

Sacha Baron Cohen Uses ADL Speech to Tear Apart Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook

 

Sacha Baron Cohen Uses ADL Speech to Tear Apart Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook

By Matt Wilstein

Excerpt:

Sacha Baron Cohen accepted the International Leadership Award at the Anti-Defamation League’s Never is Now summit on anti-Semitism and hate Thursday. And the comedian and actor used his keynote speech to single out the one Jewish-American who he believes is doing the most to facilitate “hate and violence” in America: Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

He began with a joke at the Trump administration’s expense. “Thank you, ADL, for this recognition and your work in fighting racism, hate and bigotry,” Baron Cohen said, according to his prepared...



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The Technical Traders

VIX Warns Of Imminent Market Correction

Courtesy of Technical Traders

The VIX is warning that a market peak may be setting up in the global markets and that investors should be cautious of the extremely low price in the VIX. These extremely low prices in the VIX are typically followed by some type of increased volatility in the markets.

The US Federal Reserve continues to push an easy money policy and has recently begun acquiring more dept allowing a deeper move towards a Quantitative Easing stance. This move, along with investor confidence in the US markets, has prompted early warning signs that the market has reached near extreme levels/peaks. 

Vix Value Drops Before Monthly Expiration

When the VIX falls to levels below 12~13, this typically v...



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Biotech

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

A vial of insulin. Prices for the drug, crucial for those with diabetes, have soared in recent years. Oleksandr Nagaiets/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Jeffrey Bennett, Vanderbilt University

About 7.4 million people ...



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Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:

...

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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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