April 17/Silver now at record level open interest: 227,498 and yet it is a huge $2.04 in price below the level when that record was set last year at 224450 contracts/open interest on gold climbs to 473,744 contracts/Tensions galore at North Korea detonates a nuclear test and it failed/ (did the USA interfere?)Another fraud in China’s aluminum manufacturing sector as China Hongqiao has cooked the books/Turkey’s Erdogan wins his referendum but will not be allowed to enter the EU/Mnuchin agrees with Trump that the USA needs a lower dollar/

Gold: $1289.40  UP $3.50

Silver: $18.49  UP 0  cents

Closing access prices:

Gold $1285.00

silver: $18.42!!!










Premium of Shanghai 2nd fix/NY:$7.55


LONDON FIRST GOLD FIX:  5:30 am est  holiday




For comex gold:



 TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR: 632 FOR 63,200 OZ    (1.9657 TONNES)

For silver:

For silver: APRIL


Total number of notices filed so far this month: 744 for 3,720,000 oz



The open interest in silver continues to advance with today’s reading just under 228,000 contracts (227,498 contracts) or about 4000 contracts ABOVE the record set last year. The price of silver is a good $2.04 below the price when the record OI was set. It seems that the boys want to attack gold and silver as the hit upon our precious metals in the thinly traded access market.


Let us have a look at the data for today





In gold, the total comex gold ROSE BY GIGANTIC 9,340  contracts WITH THE HUGE RISE IN THE PRICE OF GOLD ($10.60 with THURSDAY’S TRADING). The total gold OI stands at 473,744 contracts.

we had 7 notice(s) filed upon for 700 oz of gold.


With respect to our two criminal funds, the GLD and the SLV:


We had  no  changes in tonnes of gold at the GLD:

Inventory rests tonight: 848.92 tonnes



We had no changes in silver inventory at the SLV today/

THE SLV Inventory rests at: 328.201 million oz



First, here is an outline of what will be discussed tonight:

1. Today, we had the open interest in silver ROSE BY A HUGE 3,735 contracts UP TO  227,498, A NEW COMEX RECORD WITH THE CONSIDERABLE  RISE IN  SILVER THURSDAY ( 21 CENTS). We no doubt had some attempted short covering which badly failed as the longs keep piling on making it difficult for them to cover and overpowered the bankers. Our managed money sector (the hedge funds) continue to remain steadfast in their conviction as they added to their positions again with Thursday’s attempted raid. In gold, the open interest rose by 9,340 contracts with the accompanying rise in price by $10.60

(report Harvey


2.a) The Shanghai and London gold fix report



2 b) Gold/silver trading overnight Europe, Goldcore

(Mark O’Byrne/zerohedge

and in NY:  Bloomberg

2c) COT report



i)Late  SUNDAY night/MONDAY morning: Shanghai closed DOWN 23.90 POINTS OR 0.74%/ /Hang Sang CLOSED.  The Nikkei closed UP 19.63 OR 0.11% /Australia’s all ordinaires  CLOSED/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed UP at 6.8857/Oil DOWN to 52.72 dollars per barrel for WTI and 55.37 for Brent. Stocks in Europe ALL DEEPLY IN THE RED   ..Offshore yuan trades  6.8812 yuan to the dollar vs 6.8812 for onshore yuan. NOW  THE OFFSHORE IS STRONGER TO THE ONSHORE YUAN/ ONSHORE YUAN SLIGHTLY STRONGER  AND THE OFFSHORE YUAN  STRONGER TO THE ONSHORE AND THIS IS  COUPLED WITH THE WEAKER  DOLLAR. 




i)Friday: the USA is contemplating a preemptive non nuclear strike against North Korea ahead of its nuclear test

( zero hedge)

ii) Saturday night/North Korea


After much anticipation, North Korea finally launches its missile late Saturday night and it blow seconds after launching. President Trump offers no further comment as to what he intends to do:

(courtesy zero hedge)

iii) Sunday/NorthKorea



i)China/Air China/North Korea

Escalation continues as Air China suspends flights to North Korea

( zerohedge)

ii)China warns that war could break out at any moment and also states that war on the peninsula would be devastating
( zero hedge)

This is getting scary! Both China and Russia dispatch naval vessels to the Korean Peninsula  to track the USS Carl Vinson

( zero hedge)

iv) China/Hongqiao

We have another biggy fraud:  aluminum producer China Hongqiao  is facing default as accounting firm Ernst and Young walks away:

(courtesy zerohedge)



London home prices down 4.6 to 10% as this market suffers its worst collapse since the financial crisis

( zero hedge)



USA releases the video of the MOAB bomb which was dropped in the remote region of Afghanistan along the Pakistan border.  It was quite successful as it killed 36 ISIS fighters and sealed off major tunnels.

( zero hedge)

ii)India claims that 500 Pakistanis who were protecting ISIS fighters were killed in the blast.  Former Prime Minister Karzai considers  the USA bombing to be treasonous.

(courtesy zerohedge)



Not good! Again India has run out of cash as 90% of India’s ATM’s have run dry:

(courtesy zero hedge)




I brought this story to you on Thursday.  Congress is now panicking because they now realize that if Venezuela defaults, major USA oil assets will fall into Russian Hands. Russia state owned Rosneft lent Venezuela 1.5 billion USA  and as collateral, she gave 49.9% of CITGO which has 3 refineries and 800 gas stations.  If Russia buys a tiny amount of CITGO debt, on default Russia could control the company and its assets on USA soil

(courtesy zerohedge/Oil Price.com/Nick Cunningham)


Maduro orders the army into the streets ahead of Wednesday’s huge protest
(courtesy zero hedge)


i)Ted Butler asks all of us to write to the CFTC such that they do their job

( SilverSeek.com/Ted Butler/GATA)

ii)Goldseek radio interviews Bill Murphy

( GATA/Goldseek)

iii)A good explanation as to what happened on both April 10 2017 with silver’s fixing and in April 11/2017 in the afternoon gold fixing.  You will recall that the difference in price as to what was trading at the time of the fix: $1267.00 and the fix price of $1252.00 was an unheard of $15.00 and this caused losses to our mining companies who were forced to use the lower price in settling what gold was sold at the afternoon fix.

( Ronan Manly/Bullionstar)

10. USA stories

i)Trading overseas on Friday:

big event: uSA/Yen tumbles into the 108 column on dismal uSA data!

( zero hedge)

ii)Retail sales decline for the 2nd straight month /real earnings stagnate:

( zero hedge)

iii)The above release on retail sales causes the Atlanta Fed to slash Q1 GDP from 0.6% down to .5%

( zerohedge)

iv)Janet is not going to like this:  Core CPI tumbles for the first time in 7 years and the entire CPI index including food and energy fell 0.3%.  The reflation trade is now officially dead!

( zero hedge)

v)Even soft data is now plunging: please note the New York (Empire Fed Mfg Index) plunges the most in a year.

No doubt that the uSA is in serious recession;

(courtesy zero hedge)

a must read..

( David Stockman/Daily Reckoning)

vii)Business must be good! Boeing laying off hundreds of engineers!

( zero hedge)

viii)Great reason for the boys to commence a raid on gold and silver in the access market:  Mnuchin agrees with Trump that the dollar is too strong!

( zero hedge)

Let us head over to the comex:

The total gold comex open interest ROSE BY 9,340 CONTRACTS UP to an OI level of 473,744 WITH THE  RISE IN THE PRICE OF GOLD ( $10.60 with THURSDAY’S trading). The bankers again were certainly not shy in supplying the necessary paper to our newbie longs. We are now in the contract month of APRIL and it is one of the BETTER delivery months  of the year. In this APRIL delivery month  we had A LOSS OF 672 contract(s) FALLING TO 1,120. We had 7 notices served yesterday so we LOST 672 contracts or 67,200 oz will NOT stand for delivery in the active delivery month of April AND THESE GUYS WITHOUT A DOUBT WERE CASH SETTLED THROUGH THE OBSCURE EFT ROUTE DESCRIBED BY JAMES TURK. 

At the end of April/2016 only 12.3917 tonnes stood for physical delivery, although 21.306 tonnes stood initially at the beginning of April 2016.

The non active May contract month LOST 65 contract(s) and thus its OI is 2315 contracts. The next big active month is June and here the OI ROSE by 8,568 contracts UP to 344,703.

We had 7 notice(s) filed upon today for 700 oz

And now for the wild silver comex results.  Total silver OI ROSE BY 3,735 contracts FROM  223,763 up to 227.498 contracts WITH THURSDAY’S HEALTHY 21 CENT PRICE RISE.  In both gold and silver, the bankers had no choice as they supplied the necessary paper to contain both of our precious metal’s excitement. As I stated on Thursday night:
“They knew that they were cornered and they are now trying to figure out how to extricate themselves from their mess!!”
The line in the sand is $18.50 for silver.  Once pierced, the monstrous billion oz of silver shorts will blow up.
We HAVE NOW SURPASSED  the all time record high for silver open interest set on Wednesday August 3/2016:  (224,540). The closing price of silver that day: $20.44.  EVEN THOUGH WE HAVE SET ANOTHER RECORD HIGH TODAY IN OI,  WE ARE STILL $1.95 BELOW THE PRICE OF $20.44 WHEN THE PREVIOUS RECORD WAS SET.

We are in the NON active delivery month is APRIL  Here the open interest LOST 119 contracts DOWN to 80 contracts. We had 0 notices filed yesterday so we LOST ANOTHER 119 contracts or an additional 595,000 oz will NOT stand for delivery AND THESE GUYS WERE PAPER SETTLED THROUGH THE ERP ROUTE.

The next active contract month is May and here the open interest  LOST ONLY 4,123 contracts DOWN to 129,507 contracts which is astonishingly high. It is this front month that the crooked bankers are targeting as they must be frightened to see such a mammoth amount of contracts still standing for metal. Also remember that Good Friday was much earlier last year:  we have only 9 trading days before first day notice. The non active June contract LOST 24 contracts to stand at 183. The next big active month will be July and here the OI gained 7203 contracts up to 66,752.


For those keeping score, the initial amount of silver oz that stood for delivery for the May 2016 contract month: 28.01 million oz.  By conclusion of the month only 13.58 million oz stood and the rest was cash settled.(EFP ROUTE)


We had 0 notice(s) filed for NIL oz for the APRIL 2017 contract

VOLUMES: for the gold comex

Today the estimated volume was 172,008  contracts which is fair.

Yesterday’s confirmed volume was 248,543 contracts  which is good.

volumes on gold are STILL HIGHER THAN NORMAL!

INITIAL standings for APRIL
 April 17/2017.
Gold Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oz   nil
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz  
 2025.45 oz
63 kilobars
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory in oz nil oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory, in oz 
No of oz served (contracts) today
7 notice(s)
700 OZ
No of oz to be served (notices)
1113 contracts
113,000 oz
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
632 notices
63,200 oz
1.9657 tonnes
Total accumulative withdrawals  of gold from the Dealers inventory this month   NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of gold from the Customer inventory this month   445,473.6 oz
Today we HAD 1 kilobar transaction(s)/
Today we had 0 deposit(s) into the dealer:
total dealer deposits: 0 oz
We had NIL dealer withdrawals:
total dealer withdrawals:  NIL oz
we had 0  customer deposit(s):
total customer deposits; nil  oz
We had 1 customer withdrawal(s)
i) Out of Scotia: 2025.45  oz
(63 kilobars)
total customer withdrawal: 2025.45 oz
 we had 0 adjustments:

Today, 0 notice(s) were issued from JPMorgan dealer account and 0 notices were issued from their client or customer account. The total of all issuance by all participants equates to 7 contract(s)  of which 0 notices were stopped (received) by jPMorgan dealer and 3 notice(s) was (were) stopped/ Received) by jPMorgan customer account.

To calculate the initial total number of gold ounces standing for the APRIL. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (632) x 100 oz or 63,200 oz, to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of APRIL (1113 contracts) minus the number of notices served upon today (7) x 100 oz per contract equals 237,800 oz, the number of ounces standing in this  active month of APRIL.
Thus the INITIAL standings for gold for the APRIL contract month:
No of notices served so far (632) x 100 oz  or ounces + {(1113)OI for the front month  minus the number of  notices served upon today (7) x 100 oz which equals 237,800 oz standing in this non active delivery month of APRIL  (5.4276 tonnes)
we LOST 673 contracts or an additional 67,300 oz will NOT  stand and THESE were cash settled via the PRIVATE EFP route. IT SURE SEEMS THAT THE COMEX IS OUT OF PHYSICAL METAL TO SUPPLY TO OUR LONGS. THE COMEX IS NOW ONE BIG JOKE!!
 We had 21.206 tonnes of gold initially stand for delivery in April 2016.  By the month’s conclusion we had only 12.39 tonnes stand.
I have now gone over all of the final deliveries for this year and it is startling.
First of all:  in 2015 for the 13 months: 51 tonnes delivered upon for an average of 4.25 tonnes per month.
Here are the final deliveries for all of 2016 and the first 4 months of  2017
Jan 2016:  .5349 tonnes  (Jan is a non delivery month)
Feb 2016:  7.9876 tonnes (Feb is a delivery month/deliveries this month very low)
March 2016: 2.311 tonnes (March is a non delivery month)
April:  12.3917 tonnes (April is a delivery month/levels on the low side
And then something happens and from May forward deliveries boom!
May; 6.889 tonnes (May is a non delivery month)
June; 48.552 tonnes ( June is a very big delivery month and in the end deliveries were huge)
July: 21.452 tonnes (July is a non delivery month and generally a poor one/not this time!)
August: 44.358 tonnes (August is a good delivery month and it came to fruition)
Sept:  8.4167 tonnes (Sept is a non delivery month)
Oct; 30.407 tonnes complete.
Nov.    8.3950 tonnes.
DEC/2016.   29.931 tonnes
JAN/2017     3.9004 tonnes
FEB/ 18.734 tonnes
March: 0.5816 tonnes
April/2017: 5.4276
total for the 16 months;  250.257 tonnes
average 15.641 tonnes per month
Total dealer inventory 990,497.01 or 30.808 tonnes DEALER RAPIDLY LOSING GOLD
Total gold inventory (dealer and customer) = 8,967,919.844 or 278.93 tonnes 
Over a year ago the comex had 303 tonnes of total gold. Today the total inventory rests at 278.93 tonnes for a  loss of 24  tonnes over that period.  Since August 8/2016 we have lost 75 tonnes leaving the comex. However I am including kilobar transactions and they are very suspect at best
I have a sneaky feeling that these withdrawals of gold in kilobars are being used in the hypothecating process  and are being used in the raiding of gold!

The gold comex is an absolute fraud.  The use of kilobars and exact weights makes the data totally absurd and fraudulent! To me, the only thing that makes sense is the fact that “kilobars: are entries of hypothecated gold sent to other jurisdictions so that they will not be short with their underwritten derivatives in that jurisdiction.  This would be similar to the rehypothecated gold used by Jon Corzine at MF Global.
And now for silver
 April 17. 2017
Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory  nil
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
611,427.58 oz
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
nil oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory 
1,205,429.308 oz
1,198,827.64 oz
total:  2,392,041.220 oz
No of oz served today (contracts)
No of oz to be served (notices)
80 contracts
(400,000  oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts) 744 contracts (3,720,000 oz)
Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Dealers inventory this month  NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal  of silver from the Customer inventory this month  10,121,642.0 oz
today, we had  0 deposit(s) into the dealer account:
total dealer deposit: nil oz
we had Nil dealer withdrawals:
total dealer withdrawals: nil oz
we had 3 customer withdrawal(s):
i) Out of CNT: 606,323.01 oz
ii) Out of Brinks:  4043.02 oz
iii) Out of HSBC: 1046.55 oz
 We had 2 Customer deposits:
i) Into JPMorgan:  1,193,213,580 oz
ii) Into CNT: 1198,827.64 oz
***deposits into JPMorgan have now resumed.
In the month of March and February, JPMorgan stopped (received) almost all of the comex silver contracts.
why is JPMorgan bringing in so much silver??? why is this not criminal in that they are also the massive short in silver
total customer deposits; 2,392,041.220 oz
 we had 0 adjustment(s)
The total number of notices filed today for the APRIL. contract month is represented by 0 contract(s) for NIL oz. To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in APRIL., we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at 744 x 5,000 oz  = 3,720,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of APRIL (80) and the number of notices served upon today (0) x 5000 oz equals the number of ounces standing 
Thus the initial standings for silver for the APRIL contract month:  744(notices served so far)x 5000 oz  + OI for front month of APRIL.(80 ) -number of notices served upon today (0)x 5000 oz  equals  4,120,000 oz  of silver standing for the APRIL contract month. 
We LOST 119 contracts or an additional 595,000 oz will stand for delivery in this non active delivery month of April. THESE GUYS WERE CASH SETTLED THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE


Initially for the April 2016 contract1,180,000 oz stood for delivery.  At the end of April 2016: 6,775,000 oz stood as bankers needed much silver to fill major holes elsewhere.

Volumes: for silver comex
Today the estimated volume was 64,661 which is huge 
Yesterday’s  confirmed volume was 104,294 contracts OR 521 MILLION OZ /gigantic.  (THE 521 MILLION OZ = 75 % OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION OF SILVER EX CHINA EX RUSSIA)
Total dealer silver:  30.289 million (close to record low inventory  
Total number of dealer and customer silver:   191,577 million oz
The total open interest on silver is  now at record levels of 227,498 contracts with the price of $18.42
The previous record was 224,540 contracts with the price at that time of $20.44
Friday afternoon, the CME released its COT report
Let us see what the Gold COT has to offer:
Gold COT Report – Futures
Large Speculators Commercial Total
Long Short Spreading Long Short Long Short
253,004 80,338 57,490 98,119 285,483 408,613 423,311
Change from Prior Reporting Period
13,943 -3,287 8,447 2,004 18,352 24,394 23,512
165 90 75 45 59 240 197
Small Speculators  
Long Short Open Interest  
47,518 32,820 456,131  
3,929 4,811 28,323  
non reportable positions Change from the previous reporting period
COT Gold Report – Positions as of Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Our large speculators:
Those large specs that have been long in gold added 13,943 contracts to their long side
Those large specs that have been short in gold covered 3287 contracts from their short side.
Our commercials:
those commercials who are long in gold added 2004 contracts to their long side
those commercials who are short in gold from the beginning of time added a whopping 18,352 contracts to their short side
Our small specs:
those small specs that have been long in gold added 2929 contracts to their long side
those small specs that have been short in gold added 4811 contracts to their short side
Managed money (hedge funds)
this is a subset of the large/small specs and are generally referred to as hedge funds:
Those hedge funds who were long increased their position by only 651 contracts.
those hedge funds who were short in gold increased their position by only 10 contracts
thus they again went net long by 641 contracts.
the commercials violently go net short by 16,348 and thus bearish
Our now silver:
Silver COT Report: Futures
Large Speculators Commercial
Long Short Spreading Long Short
131,969 26,454 18,802 46,900 161,314
5,445 1,312 -2,738 -739 1,329
101 50 48 30 39
Small Speculators Open Interest Total
Long Short 220,172 Long Short
22,501 13,602 197,671 206,570
-956 1,109 1,012 1,968 -97
non reportable positions Positions as of: 158 120
Tuesday, April 11, 2017   © SilverSeek.com
This is exactly what I promised you that was happening inside the silver comex!
Our large specs:
those large specs that have been long in silver added a large 5445 contracts to their long side.
those large specs that have been short in silver added 1312 contracts to their short side.
Our commercials;
those commercials that have been long in silver pitched a tiny 739 contracts from their long side
those commercials that have been short in silver added a tiny 1329 contracts to their short side.
Our small specs;
those small specs that have been long in silver pitched a tiny 959 contracts from their long side
those small specs that have been short in silver added 1109 contracts to their long side.
Managed Money (hedge fund)
this subset of the large/small speculators added a large 6424 contracts to their long side
and the hedge funds that have been short in silver added 934 contracts to their short side.
Managed money went net long by a large 5490 contracts.
the commercials go net short by only 2068 contracts with silver rising appreciably.
the commercials are running scared.  The managed money continue to pile n as I have indicated to you throughout the week.

NPV for Sprott and Central Fund of Canada

will update later tonight the central fund of Canada figures

1. Central Fund of Canada: traded at Negative 6.4 percent to NAV usa funds and Negative 5.9% to NAV for Cdn funds!!!! 
Percentage of fund in gold 60.4%
Percentage of fund in silver:39.5%
cash .+0.2%( April 13/2017) 
holiday/NAV to be reported on the 18th
2. Sprott silver fund (PSLV): Premium REMAINS AT   .49%!!!! NAV (April 17/2017) 
3. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV FALLSto +0.14% to NAV  ( April 13/2017)
Note: Sprott silver trust back  into NEGATIVE territory at -.49% /Sprott physical gold trust is back into POSITIVE/ territory at +0.14%/Central fund of Canada’s is still in jail  but being rescued by Sprott.

Sprott’s hostile 3.1 billion bid to take over Central Fund of Canada

(courtesy Sprott/GATA)

Sprott makes hostile $3.1 billion bid for Central Fund of Canada


From the Canadian Press
via Canadian Broadcasting Corp. News, Toronto
Wednesday, March 8, 2017


Toronto-based Sprott Inc. said Wednesday it’s making an all-share hostile takeover bid worth $3.1 billion US for rival bullion holder Central Fund of Canada Ltd.

The money-management firm has filed an application with the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta seeking to allow shareholders of Calgary-based Central Fund to swap their shares for ones in a newly-formed trust that would be substantially similar to Sprott’s existing precious metal holding entities.

The company is going through the courts after its efforts to strike a friendly deal were rebuffed by the Spicer family that controls Central Fund, said Sprott spokesman Glen Williams.

“They weren’t interested in having those discussions,” Williams said.

 Sprott is using the courts to try to give holders of the 252 million non-voting class A shares a say in takeover bids, which Central Fund explicitly states they have no right to participate in. That voting right is reserved for the 40,000 common shares outstanding, which the family of J.C. Stefan Spicer, chairman and CEO of Central Fund, control.

If successful through the courts, Sprott would then need the support of two-thirds of shareholder votes to close the takeover deal, but there’s no guarantee they will make it that far.

“It is unusual to go this route,” said Williams. “There’s no specific precedent where this has worked.”

Sprott did have success last year in taking over Central GoldTrust, a similar fund that was controlled by the Spicer family, after securing support from more than 96 percent of shareholder votes cast.

The firm says Central Fund’s shares are trading at a discount to net asset value and a takeover by Sprott could unlock US$304 million in shareholder value.

Central Fund did not have any immediate comment on the unsolicited offer. Williams said Sprott had not yet heard from Central Fund on the proposal but that some shareholders had already contacted them to voice their support.

Sprott’s existing precious metal holding companies are designed to allow investors to own gold and other metals without having to worry about taking care of the physical bullion.


And now the Gold inventory at the GLD

April 17/no changes at the GLD/Inventory remains at 848.92 tonnes

April 13/a deposit of 6.51 tonnes into the GLD/Inventory rests at 848.92 tonnes

this no doubt is a paper deposit/

APRIL 12/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 842.41 tonnes

April 11/a huge deposit of 4.12 tonnes into inventory/Inventory rests at 842.41 tonnes

this would no doubt be a paper gold entry. It would be difficult to find that amount of physical gold.

April 10/1.77 tonnes added into inventory at the GLD/inventory rests at 838.29 tonnes

April 7/a small withdrawal of .28 tonnes from the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.49 tonnes

April 6/no change in gold tonnage at the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.77 tonnes

April 5/no change in gold tonnage at the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.77 tonnes

April 4/no change in gold tonnage at the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.77 tonnes

April 3.2017: a huge deposit of 4.45 tonnes of gold into the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.77 tonnnes

March 31/another withdrawal of 1.19 tonnes of gold inventory fro the GLD/this inventory would no doubt be heading for Shanghai/GLD inventory: 822.32 tonnes

March 30/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 833.51 tonnes

March 29/a withdrawal of 1.78 tonnes of gold out of the GLD/Inventory rests tongith at 833.51 tonnes

March 28/this is good!! A deposit of 2.67 tonnes of gold into the GLD/Inventory rests at 835.29 tonnes.

March 27/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 832.62 tonnes

March 24/another withdrawal of 1.78 tonnes from the GLD/Inventory rests at 832.62 tonnes

March 23/no change in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 834.40 tonnes

March 22/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 834.40 tonnes

March 21/a deposit of 4.15 tonnes of gold into the GLD/Inventory rests at 834.40 tonnes


March 17/a huge withdrawal of 2.37 tonnes from the GLD/Inventory rests at 837.06 tonnes

March 16/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 839.43 tonnes

March 15/ANOTHER HUGE DEPOSIT OF 4.44 TONNES/inventory rests at 839.43 tonnes

March 14/strange they whack gold and yet the GLD adds 2.93 tonnes of gold./inventory rests at 834.99 tonnes

March 13/a deposit of 6.78 tonnes of gold into the GLD/Inventory rests at 832.03 tonnes

March 10/ a withdrawal of 4.886 tonnes from the GLD/Inventory rests at 830.25

this tonnage no doubt is off to Shanghai

March 9/a withdrawal of 2.67 tonnes from the GLD/Inventory rests at 834.10

March 8/no change in gold inventory at the GLD/inventory rests at 836.77 tones

April 17 /2017/ Inventory rests tonight at 848.92 tonnes


Now the SLV Inventory

April 17/no changes in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 328.201 million oz

April 13/no changes in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 328.201 million oz

April 12/no changes in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 328.201 million oz/

April 11/a paper deposit of 11.131 million oz into the SLV/no doubt yesterday’s entry of a withdrawal of 11.231 million oz was in error/328.201 million oz

April 10/ a paper withdrawal of 11.231 million oz of silver from the SLV and this silver was used in the raid today. Inventory rests at 317.231 million oz

April 7./ a withdrawal of 947,000 oz of silver from the SLV/Inventory rests at 328.201 million oz.

April 6/a tiny withdrawal of 136,000 oz of silver from the SLV/Inventory rests at 329.148 million oz

April 5/ a withdrawal of 1.042 million oz from the SLV/Inventory rests at 329.284 million oz

April 4/no change in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 330.326 million oz/

April 3.2017; a withdrawal of 568,000 oz from the SLV/Inventory rests at 330.326

million oz/

March 31/no change in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at the SLV/Inventory rests at 330.894 million oz/
March 30/a huge withdrawal of 2.746 million oz from the SLV/inventory rests at 330.894 million oz/
March 29/a deposit of 1.136 million oz into the SLV/Inventory rests at 333.640 million oz
March 28/no changes in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 332.504 million oz/
March 27/no changes in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 332.504 million oz/
March 24/no change in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 332.504 million oz/
March 23/no change in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 332.504 million oz
March 22/no change in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 332.504 million oz
March 21/no change in inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 332.504 million oz/
March 20/a gain of 1.232 million oz of silver into the SLV/inventory rests at 332.272 million oz/
March 17/no change in silver inventory/SLV inventory rests at 331.272 million oz
March 16/no changes in silver inventory/SLV inventory rests at 331.272 million oz
March 15/no change in silver inventory/SLV inventory rests at 331.272 million oz
March 14/ a deposit of 1.136 million oz of inventory into the SLV/Inventory rests at 331.272 million oz
March 13/no change in silver inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 330.136 million oz.
March 10/no change in silver inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 330.136 million oz/
March 9/another big withdrawal of 1.137 million oz from the SLV/Inventory rests at 330.136 million oz/
March 8/a big change; a withdrawal  of 1.515 million oz from the SLV/Inventory rests at 331.273 million oz/
April 17.2017: Inventory 328.201  million oz

Major gold/silver trading/commentaries for MONDAY




Sunday night/Gold trading

USDJPY, Yields Slide, Gold Spikes As Markets Finally Respond To Latest Set Of Economic, Geopolitical Shocks

With markets shut on Good Friday, even as the one-two knockout punch of the worst monthly core CPI print in 7 years hit…

… coupled with a miss in March retail sales, which suffered their biggest two month drop in 2 years


… on Sunday night traders were desperate to catch up, or rather down to, the USDJPY which was the only instrument that traded through Friday’s data dump, and which at last check was trading at 108.34, nearly 100 pips below the Friday open, sliding further in early Japanese trading as the last holdouts on the reflation trade capitulate in panic, further pressured by fears over the rapidly deterioating situation in North Korea.

As one would expect, a surge in the yen means continued weakness in the dollar, and sure enough on Sunday night, Donald Trump’s recent bid for a weaker greenback has been the market’s command.

Predictably, and contrary to virtually every sellside analyst’s prediction for ongoing levitation in interest rates, US TSY yields have tumbled across the curve, with 5-year yields down as much as 5bps at 1.72%, lowest since Nov. 18, while the benchmark 10-year yield has slide 4bps to 2.20%, also the lowest since the election.

Perhaps the one asset class where the reflation revulsion has not been observed yet is S&P futures, as the E-mini stubbornly holds out to selling pressure and is barely lower on the session following Thursday’s sharp drop.

However, while equity markets may be ignoring the moves in FX and rates, gold is hardly waiting, and on Sunday night evening was trading above $1,290/oz, the highest price since the Trump electiomn…

… and poised for a key double resistance breakout.

While the spike in gold is hardly a surprise in light of last week’s economic data and this weekend’s North Korean events, with spot not trading there was little opportunity for traders to take advantage of what many expected would be a sharp jump in the yellow metal. Except… that’s not quite true: as we noted on Friday, while spot may have be closed, physical vendors such as Ampex were happy to sell gold, and even better, at Thursday’s depressed price.

Gold arb trade: Physical dealers like Apmex are still stuck at Thursday’s gold price

Finally, before we forget, there was another asset class that was surging overnight: the Turkish lire, which has been on fire ever since Erdogan won the popular mandate to become dictator, and which just as Barclays predicted, would lead to a spike in the Turkish currency… if only for a the very near future.

Ted Butler asks all of us to write to the CFTC such that they do their job

(courtesy SilverSeek.com/Ted Butler/GATA)


Ted Butler: Another opportunity to induce the CFTC to do its job


By Ted Butler
Thursday, April 13, 2017

An unusual confluence of seemingly unrelated factors may have created an opportunity to do something about the silver (and gold) manipulation.

On Monday, April 10, two new officials assumed key roles with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission — a new director of the Enforcement Division and the first chief officer of the newly-created Market Intelligence Unit. The main mission of both departments is to uncover and terminate market fraud and manipulation, the same overall prime mission of the agency itself.

There’s little wonder that price manipulation is the prime regulatory mission, since it is the most serious market crime possible — damaging even to those not directly involved in trading. …

… For the remainder of the commentary:




Goldseek radio interviews Bill Murphy

(courtesy GATA/Goldseek)

GoldSeek Radio interviews GATA Chairman Bill Murphy


3:40p ET Thursday, April 13, 2017

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

GATA Chairman Bill Murphy, interviewed by GoldSeek Radio’s Chris Waltzek, says he doesn’t expect geo-political events to have much effect on the price of gold but that silver is giving real trouble to the price-suppression cartel. The interview is 10 minutes long and can be heard at GoldSeek here:


CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.



A good explanation as to what happened on both April 10 2017 with silver’s fixing and in April 11/2017 in the afternoon gold fixing.  You will recall that the difference in price as to what was trading at the time of the fix: $1267.00 and the fix price of $1252.00 was an unheard of $15.00 and this caused losses to our mining companies who were forced to use the lower price in settling what gold was sold at the afternoon fix.

(courtesy Ronan Manly/Bullionstar

Ronan Manly: Death spiral for LBMA gold and silver auctions?


12:19p ET Friday, April 14, 2017

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Researcher Ronan Manly today examines the strange glitches that struck the London Bullion Market Association’s gold and silver auctions Monday and Tuesday, concluding that the auction systems are not only flawed but, as with everything else in the gold and silver markets, obscured by official secrecy and refusal to accept accountability. Manly’s analysis is headlined “Death Spiral for LBMA Gold and Silver Auctions?” and it’s posted at Bullion Star here:


CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.


First quarter 2017 SGE withdrawals 556 tonnes which is up 7.7% from last year. That means we are heading for 2224 tonnes for the year.  If we subtract out China’s mining of 472 tonnes and some scrap we get actual demand coming into China at around 1600 tonnes. Add India’s 1000 tonnes and we are well above global production of 2,200 tonnes ex China ex Russia


LAWRIE WILLIAMS: China Q1 gold demand 7.7% Up On 2016

While the detailed Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) Monthly Report figures on its website still seem stuck on the February figures (released on March 7th), trawling elsewhere through the site suggests that the March withdrawals figure actually came through at 192.25 tonnes and totalling up the reported year to date figures show that Q1 withdrawals totalled 555.9 tonnes – some 7.7% up on the 2016 Q1 figure, although still 11% behind that for the record 2015 calendar year.

(There does appear to be an anomaly of around 30 tonnes on the cumulative year to date figure as reported in the March SGE Delivery volume table, but these may be accounting anomalies from the preparations of the figures under different systems so we’ll let our assessment shown below ride until we may have a more accurate cumulative figure assuming the SGE reports the March figures separately in the same format as January and February.)

Table: SGE Monthly Gold Withdrawals (Tonnes)

Month 2017 2016 2015 % change 2016-2017 % change 2015-2017
January 184.41 225.08 255.42 – 18.1% -27.8%
February* 179.24 107.60 156.36 +66.6% +14.6%
March 192.25 183.24 213.35 +4.9% -9.9%
April 171.40 195.45
May 147.28 162.15
June 138.51 195.67
July 117.58 285.50
August 144.44 265.27
September 170.90 259.98
October 153.25 176.29
November 214.72 202.71
December 196.37 228.21
Year to date 555.90 515.92 625.13 +7.7% – 11.1%
Full Year 1,970.37 2,596.37

Source: Shanghai Gold Exchange, Lawrieongold.com

*February figures always distorted by Chinese New Year holiday

While China’s gold demand as expressed by SGE withdrawals may be up on that of a year ago, it is early days yet for 2017 and it should be recalled that Chinese gold demand was probably at its lowest for four years in 2016, and way below that of the record 2015 year. There are, however, also a number of other factors out there – not least a potential for economic conflict – or even, but probably unlikely, military conflict – between China and the USA over a number of flashpoints such as trade equality, North Korea and the South China Sea any of which could affect gold demand positively.

Whether SGE gold withdrawals should be equated to the real gold flows into China remains a contentious point. As we have pointed out here beforehand the withdrawals data as reported appears to offer a far closer correlation to the sum of Chinese gold imports plus domestic gold production and an estimate of scrap recycling than some of the estimates of demand produced by independent specialist consultancies. In part this divergence of estimates tends to relate to how Chinese demand is calculated, with the consultancies tending to dismiss gold going into the financial and banking sectors. None of the figures take into account anything that may, or may not, be being absorbed by the government for the nation’s gold reserves. Officially these have not increased for the past five months – See: Chinese CB reports zero addition to gold reserves in March – back to its bad old days but doubts are being raised again as to whether China is again hiding gold reserve additions in separate accounts now that the nation has achieved its aim of having the Yuan (Renminbi) incorporated as an integral part of the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights.


Your early MONDAY morning currency, Asian stock market results,  important USA/Asian currency crosses, gold/silver pricing overnight along with the price of oil Major stories overnight


1 Chinese yuan vs USA dollar/yuan STRONGER  6.8857(   REVALUATION NORTHBOUND   /OFFSHORE YUAN MOVES STRONGER TO ONSHORE AT   6.8812/ Shanghai bourse DOWN 23.90 POINTS OR 0.74%   / HANG SANG CLOSED

2. Nikkei closed UP 19.63 POINTS OR 0.11%   /USA: YEN FALLS TO 108.35

3. Europe stocks opened ALL IN THE RED THAT WHICH ARE TRADING       ( /USA dollar index FALLS TO  100.28/Euro UP to 1.0636


3c Nikkei now JUST BELOW 17,000

3d USA/Yen rate now well below the important 120 barrier this morning

3e WTI::  52.72 and Brent: 55.37

3f Gold UP/Yen UP

3g Japan is to buy the equivalent of 108 billion uSA dollars worth of bond per month or $1.3 trillion. Japan’s GDP equals 5 trillion usa./“HELICOPTER MONEY” OFF THE TABLE FOR NOW /REVERSE OPERATION TWIST ON THE BONDS: PURCHASE OF LONG BONDS  AND SELLING THE SHORT END

Japan to buy 100% of all new Japanese debt and by 2018 they will have 25% of all Japanese debt. Fifty percent of Japanese budget financed with debt.

3h Oil DOWN for WTI and DOWN for Brent this morning

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund RISES TO  +.187%/Italian 10 yr bond yield UP  to 2.317%    

3j Greek 10 year bond yield RISES to  : 6.69%   

3k Gold at $1287.60/silver $18.56 (8:15 am est)   SILVER ABOVE  RESISTANCE AT $18.50 

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble UP 7/100 in  roubles/dollar) 56.10-

3m oil into the 52 dollar handle for WTI and 55 handle for Brent/

3n Higher foreign deposits out of China sees huge risk of outflows and a currency depreciation  (already upon us). This can spell financial disaster for the rest of the world/China forced to do QE!! as it lowers its yuan value to the dollar/GOT BIG REVALUATION NORTHBOUND 


30 SNB (Swiss National Bank) still intervening again in the markets driving down the SF. It is not working: USA/SF this morning  1.0036 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.06876well above the floor set by the Swiss Finance Minister. Thomas Jordan, chief of the Swiss National Bank continues to purchase euros trying to lower value of the Swiss Franc.


3r the 10 Year German bund now POSITIVE territory with the 10 year RISES to  +.187%

The bank withdrawals were causing massive hardship to the Greek bank. the Greek referendum voted overwhelming “NO”.  Next step for Greece will be the recapitalization of the banks and that will be difficult.

4. USA 10 year treasury bond at 2.213% early this morning. Thirty year rate  at 2.878% /POLICY ERROR)GETTING DANGEROUSLY HIGH

5. Details Ransquawk, Bloomberg, Deutsche bank/Jim Reid.

(courtesy Jim Reid/Bloomberg/Deutsche bank/zero hedge)

Dollar, Yields, Futures Under Pressure Following Weak US Data; Europe Closed

Following Sunday night’s resumption of trade after a three-day weekend, which saw sharp moves lower in US yields, the dollar and the USDJPY after Friday’s disappointing CPI and retail sales data and the weekend’s North Korea jitters, the mood has stabilized in light trading with Asian stocks advancing, Europe mostly closed for Easter Monday and S&P futures fractionally lower at 2,325 in early New York trading.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.1 percent in holiday-thinned trade, while Japan’s Nikkei fell as much as 0.6 pct to hit a five-month low before ending up 0.1 percent. Asian gains were led by consumer staples and health care as information technology and real estate sectors decline. Japan’s Nikkei and Korea’s Kopsi advance, while Hang Seng Index and Shanghai Composite decline. Investors prepare for first U.S. stocks trading since Thursday, which will be punctuated by Netflix earnings and Empire Manufacturing data.

As noted earlier, a raft of Chinese economic data beat market expectations but did not produce notable market reactions as investors had been already optimistic following a recent string of positive China numbers. China’s economy grew 6.9 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, a tad above economists’ forecast of 6.8 percent. However, mainland Chinese shares fell, with Shanghai Composite Index down 1.0 percent at 3,212, risking a close below its 60-day average at 3,216, seen as an important support by investors and weighed by warning from top securities regulator to combat market misbehavior.

In the US, yields on 10-year Treasuries fell three basis points to the lowest since Nov. 11, while Bloomberg’s Dollar Spot Index slipped to the weakest in three weeks. Gold and the yen both climbed. The two have traded in what has effective been a mirror image for the past year.

There has been a barrage of macro news and events over the long weekend, from Friday’s disappointing inflation data casting doubt on the pace of Fed rate hikes and the U.S. decision not to label any countries currency manipulators to North Korea’s failed ballistic missile launch and Turkey’s referendum.

On Friday, U.S. retail sales dropped more than expected in March while annual core inflation slowed to 2.0 percent, the smallest advance since November 2015, from 2.2 percent in February. Core CPI posted its biggest monthly drop since 2010.


That helped to drive down the 10-year U.S. Treasuries yield to 2.200 percent, its lowest level since mid-November from around 2.228 percent on Thursday before a market holiday on Friday. The yield had risen above 2.6% in December and again in March, from around 1.85 percent before the U.S. presidential election, on expectations of Trump’s stimulus. But growing perception that Trump will struggle to push any tax cuts and fiscal spending programs through the Congress has prompted unwinding of the “Trump” trade.

“At the moment, it is hard to see any factors that could drive up bond yields,” said Hiroko Iwaki, senior strategist at Mizuho Securities. “And compared to U.S. bond yields, which have given up much of their gains after the election, U.S. share prices, having gone through a limited correction, look vulnerable given potential developments in North Korea or the French election,” she said.

As Bloomberg puts it, investors will be bracing for more to come, as the earnings season ramps up and European populism is put to the test in the first round of France’s presidential election.

“Geopolitical uncertainty weighed on global markets over the holiday weekend,” Cole Akeson, a strategist at Sberbank CIB in Moscow, wrote in an emailed note. “However, the macro data out of China this morning was slightly better than expected. For global markets generally and European markets in particular, the first round of the French presidential election on Sunday is probably the biggest planned event of the week.”

Elsewhere, there is no sign of easing in tensions over North Korea’s nuclear and missile program after the reclusive country’s failed missile test on Sunday. Trump’s national security adviser said on Sunday that the United States, its allies and China are working together on a range of responses to North Korea. “In essence, North Korea made a provocation that would not transcend the U.S. ‘red line’. But depending on how China will react, Trump could lose his patience,” said Makoto Noji, senior strategist at SMBC Nikko Securities.

Bucking the broader risk off trade, Turkey’s lira jumped as much as 2.4% after voters handed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan greater powers, however the currency pared gains as investors digested the referendum result.

Safe-haven gold gained as much as 0.8 percent to hit a five-month high of $1,295.5 per ounce on continued concerns on tensions over North Korea. The dollar slipped to as low as 108.13 yen, a five-month low and 0.4 percent below its late U.S. levels. The semi-annual U.S. Treasury currency report maintained the six countries on a “monitoring list” — China, Japan, Germany, South Korea, Taiwan and Switzerland — suggesting Washington could put more pressure on those countries to take steps to reduce their trade surplus with the United States in future.

The euro stood at $1.0622, little moved so far, and not far from a one-month low of $1.0570 touched last Monday, with focus on the French presidential election. Ahead of the first round of voting on April 23, the race looked tighter. Two polls put any of the four frontrunners, including far-right candidate Marine Le Pen and hard-left challenger Jean-Luc Melenchon, within reach of a two-person run-off vote.

Companies reporting this week include Bank of America Corp., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., International Business Machines Corp., Netflix Inc., Heineken NV and Unilever.

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures down 0.1% to 2,325.25
  • MXAP up 0.4% to 146.86
  • MXAPJ down 0.2% to 479.84
  • Nikkei up 0.1% to 18,355.26
  • Topix up 0.5% to 1,465.69
  • Hang Seng Index down 0.2% to 24,261.66
  • Composite down 0.7% to 3,222.17
  • Sensex down 0.1% to 29,432.39
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.7% to 5,889.95
  • Kospi up 0.5% to 2,145.76
  • Brent Futures down 0.9% to $55.38/bbl
  • Gold spot up 0.3% to $1,289.17
  • U.S. Dollar Index down 0.2% to 100.32

Top Overnight News from Bloomberg

  • Amazon Seeks 1,300 Prime Now Warehouses in Europe: Telegraph
  • Amazon Said to Be Consider Buying BJ’s Wholesale Club: NYP
  • Jared Kushner Said in Talks to Sell His WiredScore Stake: WSJ
  • Ethos Still Critical of Credit Suisse Pay After Bonus Cut: SZ
  • Leonard Green Said to Be Near $1.5b Charter NEX Purchase: Reuters
  • Wal-Mart Said in Advanced Talks to Buy Bonobos: Recode
  • Groupon Cuts About 100 Jobs in Chicago: Chicago Tribune
  • Abbott Said to Agree to Buy Alere For $51/Shr; Ends Lawsuit: FT
  • Ant Financial Raises MoneyGram Bid 36% to Fend Off Euronet
  • BP North Slope Well Leaking Gas After Crude Oil Spray Stops
  • Crude Slips Below $53 as U.S. Drilling Surge Stokes Output Fears
  • Pence Visits North Korea Border, ‘Heartened’ by China Moves
  • Universal’s ‘Fate of the Furious’ Is No. 1 Film at $100.2m
  • ‘Star Wars: Battlefront II’ Game to Be Released Nov. 17
  • McKesson Gets Temporary Order on Use of Lethal-Injection Drug
  • Intercontinental Hotels: Malware Accessed Pay Cards in Americas
  • Energy Transfer Partners: ISS Recommends Hldrs Vote for Merger
  • Apple Gets California Autonomous-Vehicle Test Permit
  • South Korea’s Former President Park Charged in Corruption Probe
  • Gold Seen Climbing on Weak Dollar, Global Political Tension

In Asian markets, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.1 percent in holiday-thinned trade, while Japan’s Nikkei fell as much as 0.6 pct to hit a five-month low before ending up 0.1 percent. A raft of Chinese economic data beat market expectations but did not produce notable market reactions as investors had been already optimistic following a recent string of positive China numbers. China’s economy grew 6.9 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier, a tad above economists’ forecast of 6.8 percent.

Top Asian News

  • North Korea Said to Snub Chinese Diplomats as Tensions Mounted
  • Shanghai Aluminum Climbs to Highest Since 2014 on Project Halts
  • China Stocks Drop to Two-Week Low on Korea, Regulation Concern
  • China’s Economy Accelerates as Retail, Investment Pick Up
  • China-U.S. Yield Gap at Widest in Seven Months on GDP Momentum
  • Indiabulls Real Restructure, Outlook Boost Property-Stock Rally
  • Japan Stocks to Watch: H2O Retailing, Showa Denko, Densan
  • Euro Casts Off French Vote Worries as Dollar Wilts: Markets Live
  • U.S. Scrutiny Seen Sidelining Taiwan Central Bank: Street Wrap
  • Singapore Stock Traders on FIS SunGard Face Monday Glitch

Most European bourses remain closed for Easter holidays. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.3 percent to 380.58, the lowest in more than a week. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index also dropped 0.3 percent.
The MSCI Emerging Market Index slid 0.2 percent.

Top European News

  • EU’s Piri: Turkey Talks to Be Suspended If Package Not Changed
  • Erdogan Declares Referendum Victory as Opposition Cries Foul
  • Turkey Central Government Budget Deficit 19.5b Liras in March
  • Moscow Oil Refinery Units Restart After Maintenance: Transneft
  • Turkey Election Board Chief: All Authentic Ballots Counted Valid
  • Turkey Banks Should Start Thinking How They Can Lend More: Bulut
  • U.K. Will Need EU Workers After Brexit, Hammond Says in Rp.pl
  • Turkish Jobless Rate Rises to 13% in January, Highest Since 2010
  • Macron: Turkey’s EU Membership Won’t Advance in Coming Years
  • FG Future EGM to Discuss New Share Issue
  • Turkish Stock Futures Rise at Open After Referendum Vote
  • HSBC Bank Settles Allegations it Failed to Disclose Fraud

In currencies, The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.3 percent to 1,218.01 at 10:13 a.m. in London, the lowest in three weeks. The euro rose 0.1 percent to $1.0627. The British pound strengthened 0.2 percent to $1.2542, the strongest in more than two weeks. The Turkish lira rose 1.2 percent to 3.6648 per dollar.

In commodities, gold rose 0.3 percent to $1,289.89 an ounce, the strongest in more than five months. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.8 percent to $52.73 a barrel, the lowest in more than a week. The U.S. continued to ramp up drilling, stoking concerns the nation’s surge in output this year will counter OPEC-led efforts to cut a global supply surplus. Iron ore fell 2 percent to 501 yuan per metric ton, the lowest in more than 14 weeks.

US Event Calendar

  • 8:30am: Empire Manufacturing, est. 15, prior 16.4
  • 10am: NAHB Housing Market Index, est. 70, prior 71
  • 4pm: Total Net TIC Flows, prior $110.4b
  • 4pm: Net Long-term TIC Flows, prior $6.3b



i)Late  SUNDAY night/MONDAY morning: Shanghai closed DOWN 23.90 POINTS OR 0.74%/ /Hang Sang CLOSED.  The Nikkei closed UP 19.63 OR 0.11% /Australia’s all ordinaires  CLOSED/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed UP at 6.8857/Oil DOWN to 52.72 dollars per barrel for WTI and 55.37 for Brent. Stocks in Europe  CLOSED   ..Offshore yuan trades  6.8812 yuan to the dollar vs 6.8812 for onshore yuan. NOW  THE OFFSHORE IS STRONGER TO THE ONSHORE YUAN/ ONSHORE YUAN SLIGHTLY STRONGER  AND THE OFFSHORE YUAN  STRONGER TO THE ONSHORE AND THIS IS  COUPLED WITH THE WEAKER  DOLLAR. 


Friday: the USA is contemplating a preemptive non nuclear strike against North Korea ahead of its nuclear test

(courtesy zero hedge)

US May Launch Preemptive Strike On North Korea Ahead Of Nuclear Test

With just two days to go until North Korea’s “Day of the Sun” celebrations, when as reported yesterday it may conduct its 6th nuclear test at the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site, NBC reports citing multiple senior U.S. intelligence officials that in the latest stepwise escalation, the U.S. is prepared to launch a preemptive strike with conventional weapons against North Korea should officials become convinced that Kim Jong-Un’s nation North Korea is about to follow through with a nuclear weapons test. Note: North Korea does not even have to carry out the text: mere conviction on the side of the US that it would, is sufficient.

As first reported yesterday, North Korea warned that a “big event” is near, and U.S. officials say signs point to a nuclear test that could come as early as this weekend. According to multiple sources, the U.S. intelligence community has reported with “moderate confidence” that North Korea is preparing for its sixth underground nuclear test, though the U.S. is also in the dark regarding the specific timing.

The launch of a preemptive attack would naturally threaten a counterattack by Kim: the U.S. is thus “worried” that its strikes could provoke the volatile and unpredictable North Korean regime to launch its own blistering attack on its southern neighbor. “The leadership in North Korea has shown absolutely no sign or interest in diplomacy or dialogue with any of the countries involved in this issue,” said Victor Cha, the Korea Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Meanwhile, intelligence officials have told NBC News that the U.S. Navy has positioned two destroyers capable of shooting Tomahawk cruise missiles in the region, one just 300 miles from the North Korean nuclear test site. Additionally, American heavy bombers are also positioned in Guam to attack North Korea should it be necessary, and earlier this week, the Pentagon announced that the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier strike group was being diverted to the area.

Earlier in the week, North Korea said it would “hit the U.S. first” with a nuclear weapon should there be any signs of U.S. strikes. On Thursday, North Korea warned of a “merciless retaliatory strike” should the U.S. take any action. It is almost as if the U.S. is eager to provoke the “irrational” North Korean dictator.

“By relentlessly bringing in a number of strategic nuclear assets to the Korean peninsula, the US is gravely threatening the peace and safety and driving the situation to the brink of a nuclear war,” said North Korea’s statement, which actually sounded quite rational and measured.

Futhermore, virtually everyone knows that Kim’s threats are those of a paper tiger: North Korea is not believed to have a deliverable long-range nuclear weapon, according to U.S. experts, nor does it yet possess an intercontinental missile. Which begs the question: why is the US getting involved in yet another regime change operation half way around the world?

South Korea’s top diplomat said today that the U.S. would consult with Seoul before taking any serious measures, or at least he hoped: “U.S. officials, mindful of such concerns here, repeatedly reaffirmed that (the U.S.) will closely discuss with South Korea its North Korea-related measures,” foreign minister Yun Byung told a special parliamentary meeting. “In fact, the U.S. is working to reassure us that it will not, just in case that we might hold such concerns.”

Of course, if the U.S. does not “closely discuss” any pre-strike plans, then… oops.

In any case, a new war may break out as soon as this weekend: “Two things are coming together this weekend,” said retired Adm. James Stavridis, former commander of NATO and an NBC analyst. One is the distinct possibility of a sixth North Korean nuclear weapons detonation and the other is an American carrier strike group, a great deal of firepower headed right at the Korean Peninsula.”

The U.S. is aware that simply preparing an attack, even if it will only be launched if there is an “imminent” North Korean action, increases the danger of provoking a large conflict, multiple sources told NBC News.


“It’s high stakes,” a senior intelligence official directly involved in the planning told NBC News. “We are trying to communicate our level of concern and the existence of many military options to dissuade the North first.”


It’s a feat that we’ve never achieved before but there is a new sense of resolve here,” the official said, referring to the White House.

The unofficial admission that a preemptive strike is imminent comes on the same day the U.S. announced the use of its MOAB in Afghanistan, attacking underground facilities, and on the heels of U.S. missile strikes on a Syrian airbase last week, a strike that took place while President Trump was meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago.

Earlier today, Trump gave China what amounted to a tacit ultimatum: deal with North Korea, or Trump will.

I have great confidence that China will properly deal with North Korea. If they are unable to do so, the U.S., with its allies, will! U.S.A.

And as the clock is ticking, officials have told NBC that Trump has talked to Chinese president Xi twice about North Korea since their Florida summit.

China has since sent its top nuclear negotiators to Pyongyang to communicate the gravity of the situation to the North, officials say. On Wednesday, President Xi called for a peaceful resolution to the escalating tensions.

It’s not just China: “Moscow has weighed in as well: “We are gravely concerned about Washington’s plans regarding North Korea, considering hints about the unilateral use of a military scenario” the Putin government said in a press release issued on Tuesday.”

Ultimately, the only thing standing between Kim and a Tomahawk is a decision by South Korea, where as a reminder, the political regime has been in chaos since the impeachment of former president Park.

Implementation of the preemptive U.S. plans, according to multiple U.S. officials, depends centrally on consent of the South Korean government. The sources stress that Seoul has got to be persuaded that action is worth the risk, as there is universal concern that any military move might provoke a North Korean attack, even a conventional attack across the DMZ.

Tensions have escalated on the Korean Peninsula, as this Saturday marks the anniversary of the birth of the nation’s founder — Kim il-Sung, grandfather of the current leader, Kim Jong-un. At the highest levels in South Korea and the U.S., sources told NBC News, there are fears North Korea could mark the “Day of the Sun” by testing a nuclear device. As discussed yesterday, North Korea in the past has used these national holidays to celebrate the strengths of the regime and to reinforce the national narrative of their independence, as confirmed by Cha.

“I think that is what President Trump is  trying to get the Chinese to do,” said Cha. “[It] would impose real pain and force real choices on North Korea — whether the costs are worth it for them to continue to pursue this program if they no longer have any sustenance.”

In addition to the coal ships, the Chinese made an important gesture at the UN Thursday: A surprising abstention on a Security Council resolution condemning a Syrian chemical weapons attack. China didn’t stand with the Russians on Syria, as it has in the past.

But the biggest indicator may have been the market: for the first time in month, the S&P closed on the lowest tick of the day ahead of a long weekend, almost as if traders had no desire to go long into a the 72 hours in which there is a non-trivial chance that, in some form or another, a nuclear device may go off, coupled with the launch of an unknown number of US Tomahawk missiles.





After much anticipation, North Korea finally launches its missile late Saturday night and it blow seconds after launching. President Trump offers no further comment as to what he intends to do:

(courtesy zero hedge)


Trump is considering a sudden first strike against North Korea

(courtesy zero hedge)


Trump Considering “Kinetic Military Action” On North Korea Including “Sudden Strike”

Following Sunday’s failed medium-range missile test by Kim Jong-Un, President Donald Trump has been evaluating his response options and according to Bloomberg, which cited a “person familiar with his thinking”, is willing to consider ordering “kinetic” military action, including a sudden strike, to “counteract North Korea’s destabilizing actions in the region”

However, before launching another offensive campaign – or war as some would call it – Trump’s preference is for China to take the lead on dealing with North Korea, according to the source.

While still afforded the luxury of time, Trump may be forced to decide soon how to respond: on its take on the ongoing North Korea crisis, the New York Times said in a front-page article that “what is playing out, said Robert Litwak of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, … is ‘the Cuban missile crisis in slow motion,’ but the slow-motion part appears to be speeding up.”

That said, Trump’s reported strategy isn’t a radical departure from long-standing U.S. policy. As Bloomberg writes, “he isn’t particularly interested in toppling the regime of leader Kim Jong Un and isn’t looking to force a reunification of the two Koreas, the person said. He instead wants to push for their long-term cooperation.”

Furthermore, Trump’s national security team had already thought through various scenarios that North Korea might take, and how the U.S. would react. So when the medium-range missile test failed right after launch early Sunday morning local time, Trump was informed immediately and decided to downplay it, according to the person. It was Trump’s decision that the administration’s initial response would come from Defense Secretary James Mattis, who issued a 22-word statement Saturday night.

This was followed by National Security Adviser General H.R. McMaster, who used familiar language Sunday to describe North Korea’s “provocative and destabilizing and threatening behavior,” while leaving all options on the table as his team helps develop plans of action for the region. In a previously reported interview Sunday on ABC’s “This Week,” McMaster said Trump had directed the National Security Council to collaborate with the Defense and State Departments, and intelligence agencies to “provide options and have them ready for him if this pattern of destabilizing behavior continues.”

Hours after the failed test, McMaster emphasized Trump’s preference, as with this month’s airstrikes in Syria, for unannounced military action. He added that the North Korean leader’s unpredictability complicated U.S. strategy.

McMaster’s use of “provocative” and “destabilizing” to describe North Korea echoes administrations of both parties that have attempted to rally others on the global stage, including China, to help prevent fresh war on the peninsula. Trump used the language in his February visit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Meanwhile, China has refused to commit to any specific course of action and as discussed earlier, Beijing made a plea for a return to negotiations. Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Monday that tensions need to be eased on the Korean Peninsula to bring the escalating dispute there to a peaceful resolution. Lu said Beijing wants to resume the multi-party negotiations that ended in stalemate in 2009 and suggested that U.S. plans to deploy a missile defense system in South Korea were damaging its relations with China.

Ultimately, Trump may be in wait and see mode for the next week until all the available options are on the table: on April 25, the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier is expected to reach the South Korea east coast on April 25. If Trump is indeed pressed to make a swift decision, he will surely do so once air support is available next weekend, just as the first round of the French presidential election takes place.


Monday afternoon

It does not seem that North Korea is backing down as they threaten missile tests on a weekly basis

(courtesy zero hedge)

Provocation Guaranteed As North Korea Threatens Missile Tests “On A Weekly Basis”

Despite Trump and Pence’s warnings, it seems North Korea will not back down…

“North Korea would do well not to test his resolve or the strength of the armed forces of the United States in this region.”

Vice Foreign Minister Han Song-Ryol told the BBC’s John Sudworth in Pyongyang…

“We’ll be conducting more missile tests on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis,”

He added that:

an “all out war” would result if the US was “reckless enough to use military means”.

Certainly seems like rhetoric is worsening, not improving, and if Trump is to be held to his pre-emptive word then this threat of guaranteed provocation, guarantees a pre-emptive strike.



China/Air China/North Korea

Escalation continues as Air China suspends flights to North Korea

(courtesy zerohedge)

Air China Suspends Flights To North Korea As Kim Vows “Merciless Response To Any US Provocation”

In the latest escalation over what may be an imminent preemptive airstrike on North Korea by US warships now located just 300 miles away from the North Korean nuclear test site, moments ago China’s national airline, Air China, announced it was suspending flights from Beijing to the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, from late on Friday, Chinese state broadcaster CCTV said. It did not say why the flights, which operate on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, were being suspended.

In the report published on its website, CCTV did not cite a source while according to Reuters, Air China could not immediately be reached for comment after business hours. The last flight between the two cities took place on Friday, with the return flight to Beijing arriving in the early evening, the broadcaster said. Air China began regular flights between the two countries in 2008 but the flights were frequently cancelled because of unspecified problems, the broadcaster said. China is North Korea’s sole major ally but it disapproves of the North’s weapons programs, and its confrontations with the United States and its Asian allies, and it has supported U.N. sanctions against it.

Following repeated missile tests that drew international criticism, China banned all imports of North Korean coal on Feb. 26, cutting off the country’s most important export product. North Korea’s army vowed a ‘merciless’ response to any US provocation, the official news agency reported Friday, as tensions soar over Pyongyang’s rogue nuclear program.

Meanwhile, after warning that it was ready to “go to war”, on Friday North Korea’s army vowed a merciless” response to any US provocation, the official news agency reported Friday. A statement of KCNA, which cited Washington’s recent missile strike on Syria, said the administration of President Donald Trump had “entered the path of open threat and blackmail against the DPRK”.

DPRK supreme leader inspects army’s special operation forces amid tension with U.S. http://ht.ly/xFT830aQZio 

China warns that war could break out at any moment and also states that war on the peninsula would be devastating
(courtesy zero hedge)

This is getting scary! Both China and Russia dispatch naval vessels to the Korean Peninsula  to track the USS Carl Vinson

(courtesy zero hedge)

China, Russia Dispatch Naval Vessels To Track USS Carl Vinson To Korean Peninsula

Video has been released allegedly showing a mass military mobilization in Vladivostok, Russia, just eight miles from the border with North Korea, as the world edges towards war.

As The Express reports, the dramatic move, unconfirmed by the Russian government, was spotted by residents in the border city and posted on social media.

According to the reports, a military convoy of eight surface-to-air missiles, part of Russian Air Defence, were on the move.

The S400 anti-aircraft missiles were moved to Vladivostok, where Vladimir Putin already has a major navy base.

Furthermore, As the following footage shows (beginning at aorund 1:20 below) Chinese military assets are also being moved to the North Korean border

In addition to military forces, AP reportsChina and Russia have dispatched intelligence-gathering vessels from their navies to chase the USS Carl Vinson nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, which is heading toward waters near the Korean Peninsula, multiple sources of the Japanese government revealed to The Yomiuri Shimbun.

It appears that both countries aim to probe the movements of the United States, which is showing a stance of not excluding military action against North Korea. The Self-Defense Forces are strengthening warning and surveillance activities in the waters and airspace around the area, according to the sources.

The aircraft carrier strike group, composed of the Carl Vinson at its core with guided-missile destroyers and other vessels, is understood to be around the East China Sea and heading north toward waters near the Korean Peninsula.

The dispatch of the intelligence-gathering vessels appears to be partly aimed at sending a warning signal to the United States.

Yonhap reports that the USS Carl Vinson is expected to reach South Korea’s east coast by April 25th.



We have another biggy fraud:  aluminum producer China Hongqiao  is facing default as accounting firm Ernst and Young walks away:

(courtesy zerohedge)

Chinese Economic Data Beats Across The Board After Record Credit Injection

Overnight China reported a barrage of economic data for March and Q1, that not only showed the first back to back GDP acceleration in seven years, but beat across the board as investment picked up, retail sales rebounded and factory output strengthened, following record credit growth and a fresh rebound in China’s property markets which defy Beijing’s attempts to taper the country’s newest housing bubble.

The Q1 data highlights:

  • GDP rose 6.9%, above the 6.8% expected, and higher than the 6.8% in Q4
  • Fixed-asset investment rose 9.2% y/y, up from 8.1%, and higher than the 8.8% estimate, and in line with the highest forecast among 35 economists
  • Industrial Production rose 7.6% y/y in March; also well above the estimated 6.3% gain, and higher than the highest forecast of 6.5% among 37 economists polled
  • Retail sales rose 10.9% y/y in March; beating estimates of 9.7%

“Growth remained strong on the back of continued strength in housing activity, resilient infrastructure investment, and better external demand,” said Robin Xing, chief China economist at Morgan Stanley in Hong Kong. “The strong growth and better external demand has provided room for a faster pace of countercyclical monetary policy tightening.”

In current-price terms, the economy expanded 11.8% from a year earlier, according to Bloomberg estimates. “That’s making the problem of excess leverage look a little more manageable – at least as long as factory reflation stays strong,” BI economists Tom Orlik and Fielding Chen wrote in a report. Of note: the GDP internals pointed to further rebalancing away from the old industrial growth drivers. Consumption reportedly contributed 77.2% to growth in the first quarter, an NBS spokesman said at a briefing in Beijing. Last year, 64.6% of growth came from consumption, although one traditionally takes such goalseeked breakdowns with a grain of salt.

The Q1 expansion validated China’s recent rebound as producer prices have soared, resulting in the ongoing global “reflation” trade, as industrial output picked up courtesy of soaring credit. Still, one measure of consumer earnings slowed. Growth of median per-capita disposable income decelerated to 6.7% in the first quarter, down from 8.3% last year and slower than GDP expansion for the first time since NBS began releasing the gauge in March 2014.

“The rebound in retail sales growth was particularly important as it indicates that consumer spending remains strong,” said Rajiv Biswas, Asia-Pacific chief economist at IHS Markit in Singapore. “The upturn in Chinese growth is a very positive indicator for the Asia Pacific and world growth in 2017, as well as underpinning the near-term outlook for global commodities.”

Quoted by Bloomberg, Raymond Yeung, chief greater China economist at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. in Hong Kong said “for the first time in the recent years, China starts a year with a strong headline GDP. Thanks to strong investment and property, the economy is performing well.”

“The first quarter growth is mainly driven by reflation and very strong property sales and investment,” said Larry Hu, head of China economics at Macquarie Securities Ltd. in Hong Kong. “This strong data would give more confidence to maintain a tightening stance.”

Additionally, the labor market has been holding up too: The surveyed jobless rate fell in March from February, while the level in big cities was below 5 percent at end of last month, the NBS said. China said it added 3.34 million new jobs in the first quarter.

Other notable data releases overnight from China:

  • China produced a record quantity of steel in March as production of crude steel expanded 1.8 percent from a year earlier
  • Coal production rebounded in March after the government said it doesn’t intend to reintroduce widespread restrictions this year as long as prices remain acceptable to regulators
  • Oil production stagnated in the first quarter, averaging 3.91 million barrels a day
  • Investment in property development rose 9.1 percent in the first three months from a year earlier, compared with 8.9 percent in the first two months and 6.9 percent in 2016. Yet developers may find 2017 more challenging, as about a dozen cities have imposed tighter restrictions on purchases to curb a frenzy of speculation.

As Bloomberg adds, forecasters responded to the data by raising full-year growth estimates. Zhu Haibin, an economist at JPMorgan Chase & Co. in Hong Kong, boosted his to 6.7% from 6.6%, citing expectations for “solid growth momentum for the rest of the year.” Nomura Holdings Inc. analysts Yang Zhao and Wendy Chen raised their projection to 6.7 percent from 6.5 percent.

Despite recent property tightening measures, investment momentum is likely to stay strong in coming months amid heavy infrastructure investment. The April 1 announcement of the new Xiongan economic zone portends massive construction spending and suggests authorities are likely to remain reliant on investment to help support longer-term growth.

However, for all the rhetoric just one key variable mattered: China’s relentless credit pump. As reported on Friday, the broadest measure of new credit rose more than estimated last month amid strong growth in shadow banking. Aggregate financing grew 2.12 trillion yuan ($308 billion). Furthermore, for the first quarter, total social financing reached a new record high 6.93 trillion yuan – equivalent to the size of Mexico’s economy – and well above last year’s first quarter total. At today’s Yuan exchange rate, China’s credit creation in Q1 amounted to just over 1 trillion US dollars.


While the economic data was a welcome offset to this unprecedented credit boom, concerns continue to mount that with China’s growth primarily a function of relentless credit expansion it is only a matter of time before this debt-fueled model breaks and the world’s growth dynamo suffers a cardiac arrest.





London home prices down 4.6 to 10% as this market suffers its worst collapse since the financial crisis

(courtesy zero hedge)

London Housing Market Suffers Worst Collapse Since Financial Crisis

At the end of 2016 we reported that the formerly invincible London home market had suffered its biggest crack in years, when home prices plunged the most in six years according to Rightmove. Asking prices in London dropped 4.3% in December with inner London down 6%.  Meanwhile, the most exclusive neighborhoods, like Kensington and Chelsea, recorded even sharper declines at nearly 10% as home buyers migrated to cheaper areas of the city.

While it was unclear what was the catalyst: whether post-Brexit nerves, China’s crackdown on capital outflows, the ongoing depressed commodity market, or reduced migrations by wealthy Russian and Arab oligarchs, what is obvious is that the slump has continued, and according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, its price balance for the city fell to the lowest since February 2009 last month, plunging to minus 49, which means that a greater percentage of agents reported drops in March.

Still, as Bloomberg reports, more respondents than not still expect prices in London to rise over the next year, the report showed. they may be disappointed.

Speaking to Bloomberg, Samuel Tombs at Pantheon Macroeconomics said that the London measure tends to represent the prime market rather than the city as a whole. The slump in the gauge tallies with other reports of sellers in central London having to cut prices to close deals.  Nationally, the RICS price index stayed at 22 in March, though the expectations for both values and sales over the next year weakened. New buyer inquiries and sales were stagnant, with the most expensive properties among the worst performers, according to report.

While buyers – especially those relying on mortgages – remain largely locked out of the market because of high prices, nervousness about Brexit and the U.K. outlook, price downside according to realtors may be “limited because of the continued shortage in the supply of property to buy, with estate agents’ listings reportedly at a record low.”

Which is odd because a cursory check reveals not only that there is a glut of high end properties, many of which have been on the market as long as a year, but that despite huge discounts as high as 40%, nothing is moving, and just this one listing service has no less than 124 pages of properties – at 15 properties per page – with price declines in Kensington and Chelsea alone, up from “only” 53 pages when we last looked at the same website back in December.

“High end sale properties in central London remain under pressure, while the wider residential market continues to be underpinned by a lack of stock,” said Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist. “For the time being it is hard to see any major impetus for change in the market, something also being reflected in the flat trend in transaction levels.”




USA releases the video of the MOAB bomb which was dropped in the remote region of Afghanistan along the Pakistan border.  It was quite successful as it killed 36 ISIS fighters and sealed off major tunnels.

(courtesy zero hedge)

US Releases Video Of “Mother Of All Bombs” Explosion Which Killed 36 ISIS Fighters

One day after the Trump administration demonstratively used the GBU-43/B Massive Ordinance Air Blast bomb (MOAB, also known as Mother Of All Bombs) the most powerful non-nuclear bomb in the US arsenal in Afghanistan, in a clear show of force meant to send a signal to North Korea, it released a video of the explosion.

Afghan officials said 36 militants were killed in the strike in Nangarhar province, near the Pakistan border, where the US military previously estimated ISIS had 600 to 800 active fighters. There were no civilian casualties, according to the Ministry of Defense statement, which also said several ISIS caves and ammunition caches were destroyed. U.S. officials said precautions were taken to avoid civilian casualties. The ISIS commander in the area was among the dead, Afghanistan’s presidential palace said.

Hakim Khan, 50, a resident of Achin district where the attack took place, was quoted by CBS as saying he welcomed the attack on ISIS, saying, “I want 100 times more bombings on this group.”

But fierce opposition among Afghans also surfaced. Former President Hamid Karzai condemned the strike, saying it “is not the war on terror but inhuman, and (the) most brutal misuse of our country as (a) testing ground for new and dangeorus weapons. It is upon us,Afghans, to stop the USA.”

Karzi said, “I vehemently and in strongest words condemn the dropping of the latest weapon.”

Others were similarly stunned by the unexpected US show of force.

Since news of the strike broke, most social media users in Afghanistan criticized both the Afghan government and U.S. One user calleld it “our generation’s “Hiroshima,” adding, “I’m still in shock.”

In a 2003 review of the legality of using the MOAB, the Pentagon concluded that it could not be called an indiscriminate killer under the Law of Armed Conflict. “Although the MOAB weapon leaves a large footprint, it is discriminate and requires a deliberate launching toward the target,” the review said, adding, “It is expected that the weapon will have a substantial psychological effect on those who witness its use.”

Meanwhile, President Trump called the attack a “very, very successful mission.” The U.S. military headquarters in Kabul said in a statement that the bomb was dropped at 7:32 p.m. local time Thursday on a tunnel complex in Achin district of Nangarhar province, where the Afghan affiliate of ISIS has been operating. The target was close to the Pakistani border.

The U.S. estimates 600 to 800 IS fighters are present in Afghanistan, mostly in Nangarhar. The U.S. has concentrated heavily on combatting them while also supporting Afghan forces battling the Taliban. Just last week a U.S. Army Special Forces soldier, Staff Sgt. Mark R. De Alencar, 37, of Edgewood, Maryland, was killed in action in Nangarhar.

According to CBS, Adam Stump, a Pentagon spokesman, said the bomb was dropped from a U.S. MC-130 special operations transport. He said the bomb had been brought to Afghanistan “some time ago” for potential use. Army Gen. John W. Nicholson, commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, said in a written statement that the strike was designed to minimize the risk to Afghan and U.S. forces conducting clearing operations in the Achin area “while maximizing the destruction” of ISIS fighters and facilities. He said ISIS has been using improvised explosive devices, bunkers and tunnels to strengthen its defenses.

“This is the right munition to reduce these obstacles and maintain the momentum of our offensive against ISIS-K,” he added, using the U.S. military’s acronym for the ISIS affiliate.

Ismail Shinwari, the governor of Achin district, said the U.S. attack was carried out in a remote mountainous area with no civilian homes nearby. He said there has been heavy fighting in the area in recent weeks between Afghan forces and ISIS militants.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said ISIS fighters had used the tunnels and caves in Achin to maneuver freely. “The United States takes the fight against ISIS very seriously and, in order to defeat the group, we must deny them operational space, which we did,” Spicer said.

* * *

With that we now turn our attention to North Korea, where many expect that an explosion of a similar magnitude is imminent over the next 48 hours.



India claims that 500 Pakistanis who were protecting ISIS fighters were killed in the blast.  Former Prime Minister Karzai considers  the USA bombing to be treasonous.

(courtesy zerohedge)

India Claims 500 Pakistanis (Protecting ISIS) Killed In “Treasonous” US Bombing In Afghanistan

While US officials have upped their death count from the Afghan MOAB drop to 94, Indian authorities are claiming that at least 500 Pakistani nationals (who had been protecting the ISIS operatives in this area) were killed in the US bombing in Nangarhar province.

One India reports that the area that was targetted was controlled by the Islamic State and protected by the Pakistan army, sources say.

The operation that was jointly coordinated by the 201 Selab Corps of the Afghanistan army targeted the caves and tunnels that were used as hiding places by the IS. It is now clear that the Pakistan army was backing these IS operatives in Afghanistan, official sources also confirmed.


Indian agencies who are coordinating withe counterparts in Afghanistan have learnt that there are no civilians living in the area. There were a large number of stooges of the Inter-Services intelligence who have been protecting the IS operatives in this area. The US action comes at a time when there was a huge build-up of IS forces in Afghanistan.


Indian agencies say that the Pakistan army and the ISI were nurturing these operatives. The entire area that was bombed was under the control of the ISI officials backing the IS, sources also said. The impact of the bomb was so huge that it blew up at least 500 Pakistanis and an equal number of IS operatives.

So, while India seems pleased with the result of the US bombing, not everyone else is. Reuters reports that former Afghan president Hamid Karzai accused his successor on Saturday of committing treason by allowing the U.S. military to drop the largest conventional bomb ever used in combat during an operation against Islamic State militants in Afghanistan.

Karzai, who also vowed to “stand against America”, retains considerable influence within Afghanistan’s majority Pashtun ethnic group, to which President Ashraf Ghani also belongs. His strong words could signal a broader political backlash that may endanger the U.S. military mission in Afghanistan.

“How could you permit Americans to bomb your country with a device equal to an atom bomb?” Karzai said at a public event in Kabul, questioning Ghani’s decision. “If the government has permitted them to do this, that was wrong and it has committed a national treason.”


“I decided to get America off my soil,” he said. “This bomb wasn’t only a violation of our sovereignty and a disrespect to our soil and environment, but will have bad effects for years.”

Ghani’s office said the strike had been closely coordinated between Afghan and U.S. forces and replied to Karzai’s charges with a statement saying:

“Every Afghan has the right to speak their mind. This is a country of free speech.”

Public reaction to Thursday’s strike has been mixed, with some residents near the blast praising Afghan and U.S. troops for pushing back the Islamic State militants.






Not good! Again India has run out of cash as 90% of India’s ATM’s have run dry:

(courtesy zero hedge)

“Out Of Cash” – More Than 90% Of India ATMs Run Dry

Five months have passed since the demonetisation drive, but the people of India continue to face a shortage of cash in banks and ATMs. The Times of India reports that more than 90% of the ATMs in the northern region do not have cash, and in the southern states as many as 65% of ATMs have run dry.

Speaking to TOI, State Bank of India (SBI) deputy general manager Ajoy Kumar Pandit said the customers are losing confidence in them due to the crisis. “Nearly 70 per cent of our 648 ATMs in the three districts are out of cash. The rest will also become dry in the next few days as we do not have cash to refill the machines. We are helpless from our side,” he said.

A banking source said the RBI has diverted most of the cash to north India due to the recent elections. This has affected the southern parts of the country. “The government’s intention is to encourage smart payment systems, but the infrastructure is not up to the mark,” the source said. Many ATMs have not been upgraded with the new software required for handling the new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 denominations, the source added.

India.com notes that the worst hit is the common man, who has been suffering the pinch even as the government has made an effort to make available sufficient cash in ATMs across the nation. The post-demonetisation woes continue to haunt the common man in the country as many ATMs in metro cities seem to be running low on cash for the last one week.

“No Cash” signs hang across ATMs across India…

One of the reasons why ATMs would be short of cash is because of the charges that have been levied in the coming months on ATM withdrawals. Currently, a customer has to pay Rs 20 per ATM withdrawal after five free transactions a month from a bank one has an account in.  Customers using ATMs of banks they don’t have an account in are charged Rs 20 after three free withdrawals. However, banking officials said on Thursday that banks may slash the number of free ATM withdrawals or hike the charges levied to discourage people from using cash.

According to a survey conducted by the LocalCircles citizen engagement platform, it was reported that the availability of cash at ATMs has worsened in the last two months or so in many parts of the country. It reported that eighty-three per cent citizens who visited ATMs last week in Hyderabad, could not find the cash while it was 69 per cent in Pune.

C.H. Venkatachalam, general secretary of All India Bank Employees Association was quoted by Free Press Journal saying, “Actually, the problem is directly linked to demonetisation. Many ATMs are yet to be recalibrated. Plus, people have started hoarding Rs 2,000 notes. There is still a huge mismatch in the demand and supply of currency notes.” Meanwhile, Ashish Gupta, research analyst at Credit Suisse was quoted by Financial Times saying, “The government wants to slow down the cash money in the economy. They want the new equilibrium level in the economy to be lower”.




I brought this story to you on Thursday.  Congress is now panicking because they now realize that if Venezuela defaults, major USA oil assets will fall into Russian Hands. Russia state owned Rosneft lent Venezuela 1.5 billion USA  and as collateral, she gave 49.9% of CITGO which has 3 refineries and 800 gas stations.  If Russia buys a tiny amount of CITGO debt, on default Russia could control the company and its assets on USA soil


(courtesy zerohedge/Oil Price.com/Nick Cunningham)

Congress Panics As US Oil Assets Could Fall Into Russian Hands If Venezuela Defaults

As we noted last night, Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PDVSA made principal and interest payments of $2.2 billion today, avoiding default yet again despite what Vice President Tareck El Aissami called a “ruthless economic war” being waged against the Maduro government.



That’s the good news, the bad news is that PDVSA has $62 billion more in principal and interest due over the next few years…

And, as OilPrice.com’s Nick Cunningham details, that has members of Congress very nervous… If Venezuela defaults on its debt obligations, it could result in Russia taking control over U.S. refining assets, leading to more Russian “control over oil and gas prices worldwide,” which would “inhibit U.S. energy security, and undermine broader U.S. geopolitical efforts.”

That is the warning from two members of Congress, Reps. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) and Albio Sires (D-NJ). The two Congressmen sent a joint letter to the U.S. Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin, requesting his attention on the matter. A bipartisan group of six U.S. Senators also requested a response from Secretary Mnuchin on the matter.

They cite the fact that Russia’s government-backed oil company, Rosneft, gave Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, PDVSA, a $1.5 billion loan. As collateral, PDVSA offered up 49.9 percent of Citgo, a subsidiary of the Venezuelan oil company. Citgo owns three refineries in the U.S., along with pipelines and retail gas stations.

The Congressmen are worried that if PDVSA defaults, Rosneft will seize the U.S.-based refineries.

“The Russian government could readily become the second-largest foreign owner of U.S. domestic refinery capacity,” which would be “to the detriment of U.S. interests,” the Congressmen wrote. “[W]e remain deeply concerned over the implications for U.S. national security.”

The concerns are rather odd. What exactly would “the Russians” do with the three refineries? The Congressmen seem to be suggesting that somehow Rosneft would conspire to restrict gasoline production to drive up prices in an effort to somehow weaken U.S. national security or the American economy. Related: Is The Oil Price Rally Running Out Of Steam?

This is silly. While Rosneft is state-owned, it is also a company that would rather not lose a ton of money. Even if Rosneft somehow gained control of Citgo’s refineries, restricting gasoline production might provide some discomfort for U.S. motorists in the region, but it would be financially ruinous to the Rosneft-controlled refineries. “The Russians can’t hold the U.S. hostage,” John LaForge, head of Real Assets strategy at Wells Fargo, told CNN. The three refineries are also a drop in the bucket as far as U.S. gasoline production is concerned. “Other refineries would love to pick up the slack,” LaForge added. Undoubtedly, Rosneft would rather operate the refineries just like anybody else, which is to say, selling gasoline in order to make money. Russian control of Citgo’s refineries would not threaten U.S. national security.

It is hard not to conclude that the Congressmen are engaging in a bit of bluster and Russia fear-mongering, not coincidentally at a time when U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is in Moscow and U.S.-Russian relations are deteriorating. So, there isn’t much to see here.

While this ongoing development is rather trivial to U.S. interests, the stakes could not be higher for Venezuela.

The country is in the midst of a multi-year economic meltdown, with no light at the end of the tunnel.

PDVSA has a $2.5 billion debt payment due this week, and at the time of this writing, it appears that the company will be able to meet that obligation. The state also has nearly $500 million in sovereign debt payments falling due. Cash is running out, but the Venezuelan government, for better or worse, has prioritized meeting bond payments at all costs.

The state has roughly $10 billion left in cash reserves before this week’s payment (although some of that is reportedly not in cash, but in gold), and billions more in coupon payments to meet later this year. A default this week doesn’t appear likely. But it is not a given that Venezuela makes it through 2017 without a default, a missed debt payment, or some sort of debt restructuring.

According to the credit-default swap market, investors are pegging the odds of a Venezuelan default within the next six months at 41 percent, a jump from just 34 percent in March.

And, as the two U.S. Congressmen worried about the situation wrote in their letter, the state’s and PDVSA’s assets are indeed on the line. The immediate spark to the latest political crisis was the government’s negotiations with Rosneft to offer them a stake in Venezuelan oil fields. Last month, when the Congress objected, the Supreme Court – which is controlled by the ruling party – tried to neuter the legislature. That resulted in the mass protests that are still unfolding. The Venezuelan government is desperate to sell off some oil assets in order to raise cash.

The situation in Venezuela is dire, and deserves U.S. – and global – attention. But Russian control of U.S. refineries is hardly the main story here.

Maduro orders the army into the streets ahead of Wednesday’s huge protest
(courtesy zero hedge)

Your early morning currency/gold and silver pricing/Asian and European bourse movements/ and interest rate settings MONDAY morning 7:00 am



GBP/USA 1.2543 UP .0026 (Brexit  March 29/ 2017/ARTICLE 50 SIGNED


Early THIS MONDAY morning in Europe, the Euro ROSE by 27 basis points, trading now BELOW the important 1.08 level  RISING to 1.0636; Europe is still reacting to Gr Britain HARD BREXIT,deflation, announcements of massive stimulation (QE), a proxy middle east war, and the ramifications of a default at the Austrian Hypo bank, an imminent default of Greece, Glencore, Nysmark and the Ukraine, along with rising peripheral bond yield further stimulation as the EU is moving more into NIRP, and now the Italian referendum defeat AND NOW THE ECB TAPERING OF ITS PURCHASES/ THE USA’S NON tightening by FAILING TO RAISE THEIR INTEREST RATE AND NOW THE HUGE PROBLEMS FACING TOO BIG TO FAIL DEUTSCHE BANK + THE ELECTION OF TRUMP IN THE USA+ TRUMP HEALTH CARE BILL DEFEAT AND MONTE DEI PASCHI NATIONALIZATION / Last night the Shanghai composite CLOSED DOWN 23.90 POINTS OR 0.74%    / Hang Sang  CLOSED HOLIDAY/AUSTRALIA  CLOSED HOLIDAY  / EUROPEAN BOURSES CLOSED

We are seeing that the 3 major global carry trades are being unwound. The BIGGY is the first one;

1. the total dollar global short is 9 trillion USA and as such we are now witnessing a sea of red blood on the streets as derivatives blow up with the massive rise in the rise in the dollar against all paper currencies and especially with the fall of the yuan carry trade. The emerging market which house close to 50% of the 9 trillion dollar short is feeling the massive pain as their debt is quite unmanageable.

2, the Nikkei average vs gold carry trade ( NIKKEI blowing up and the yen carry trade HAS BLOWN up/and now NIRP)

3. Short Swiss franc/long assets blew up ( Eastern European housing/Nikkei etc.

These massive carry trades are terribly offside as they are being unwound. It is causing global deflation ( we are at debt saturation already) as the world reacts to lack of demand and a scarcity of debt collateral. Bourses around the globe are reacting in kind to these events as well as the potential for a GREXIT>

The NIKKEI: this MONDAY morning CLOSED UP 19.63 POINTS OR 0.11%

Trading from Europe and Asia:


Gold very early morning trading: $1288.80


Early MONDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield: 2.213% !!! DOWN 1 IN POINTS from WEDNESDAY night in basis points and it is trading JUST BELOW resistance at 2.27-2.32%. THE RISE IN YIELD WITH THIS SPEED IS FRIGHTENING

 The 30 yr bond yield  2.878, DOWN 1  IN BASIS POINTS  from THURSDAY night.

USA dollar index early MONDAY morning: 100.28 DOWN 23  CENT(S) from THURSDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers MONDAY MORNING


And now your closing MONDAY NUMBERS

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 3.885%  UP 1/5  in basis point(s) yield from THURSDAY 

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: +.008%  DOWN 2  in   basis point yield from THURSDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.707%  PAR IN basis point yield from THURSDAY (this is totally nuts!!/

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: 2.317 PAR  POINTS  in basis point yield from THURSDAY 

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 62 points HIGHER than Spain.





Closing currency crosses for MONDAY night/USA DOLLAR INDEX/USA 10 YR BOND YIELD/12:00 PM 

Euro/USA 1.0658 UP .0048 (Euro UP 48 basis points/ represents to DRAGHI A COMPLETE POLICY FAILURE/

USA/Japan: 108.47 DOWN: 0.067 (Yen UP 7 basis points/ 

Great Britain/USA 1.2588 UP 0.0071( POUND UP 71 basis points)

USA/Canada 1.3278 DOWN 0.0042(Canadian dollar UP 42 basis points AS OIL FELL TO $52.95


This afternoon, the Euro was UP by 48 basis points to trade at 1.0658


The POUND ROSE BY 71  basis points, trading at 1.2588/

The Canadian dollar ROSE by 71 basis points to 1.3278,  WITH WTI OIL FALLING TO :  $52.95

The USA/Yuan closed at 6.8803/
the 10 yr Japanese bond yield closed at +.008% DOWN 2 IN  BASIS POINTS / yield/ 

Your closing 10 yr USA bond yield PAR  IN basis points from THURSDAY at 2.234% //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic  USA 30 yr bond yield: 2.902 PAR  in basis points on the day /

Your closing USA dollar index, 100.09 DOWN 42  CENT(S)  ON THE DAY/1.00 PM 

Your closing bourses for Europe and the Dow along with the USA dollar index closing and interest rates for MONDAY: 1:00 PM EST

London:  CLOSED 
German Dax :CLOSED 
Paris Cac  CLOSED

The Dow closed UP 183.67 OR 0.90%

NASDAQ WAS closed UP 51.64 POINTS OR 0.89%  4.00 PM EST
WTI Oil price;  52,95 at 1:00 pm; 

Brent Oil: 55.60 1:00 EST




This ends the stock indices, oil price, currency crosses and interest rate closes for today

Closing Price for Oil, 5 pm/and 10 year USA interest rate:


BRENT: $55.65


USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 2.908%


USA/JAPANESE YEN:108.89   UP 0.334

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 100.30  DOWN 21  cents ( HUGE resistance at 101.80 broken TO THE DOWNSIDE)

The British pound at 5 pm: Great Britain Pound/USA: 1.2564 : UP .0047  OR 47 BASIS POINTS.

Canadian dollar: 1.3318  DOWN .0001 (CAN DOLLAR UP 1 BASIS PTS)

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: +.187%


And now your more important USA stories which will influence the price of gold/silver


Traders Buy The F**king Thermonuclear War Threat Dip


Just seemed appropriate…


Soft data rolled over today (as Empired Fed and Homebuilder confidence dropped) but one glance at the following chart shows the “odd one out”


After lackluster U.S. retail sales and inflation data on April 14, as well as heightened geopolitical concerns, the bond market is skeptical the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates another two times in 2017, as forecast by central bank officials in the so-called dot plot. Implied rates on the fed fund futures curve are fully pricing in a September rate increase, with about a 22 percent chance of another by year-end, according to BMO strategists Ian Lyngen and Aaron Kohli.

“Despite criticism of the Fed’s March rate hike, they certainly now look very prudent to have put at least one rate hike on the books this calendar year before the series of risks and economic headwinds picked up,” the pair wrote Monday.

And that says nothing about the sheer panic in European FX hedges…


Oh and then there’s the debt ceiling (which has now inverted the front of the Bill curve)…


But nothing can stop a total VIX slam and sure enough, as VIX’s term structure collapses worryingly, stocks were lifted majestically… helped also by a USDJPY run stop to 109.00…


Stocks fooled by VIX segmentation…


From Thursday’s close, Stocks were suddenly bid as bonds, gold, and crude tumbled…


But Gold remains the safe haven…


On the day all the major indices were higher…Trannies and Small Caps melted up in a masive short-squeeze


Erasing Thursday losses…


Big short squeze at the open and then on Mnuchin saying tax reform won’t happen soon!!


So to summarize:

  • US Hard data greatly disappoints
  • US Soft data rolls over
  • French election odds narrow further – anyone’s game and hedges at EU crisis highs
  • Debt Ceiling looms (and curve inverted)
  • North Korea threatens weekly missile tests guaranteeing provocation
  • US sends 2 more aicrcraft carriers to Korean Peninsula
  • Oil prices tumble
  • Mnuchin says a strong dollar is a bad thing (but machines misinterpret)

And Stocks have their best day in 6 weeks!

That spike was the spech to congress jump that ended the bank rally.

The machines did their best to rally The Dow above its 50DMA proving that US stocks are the real safe haven of the world, right?


SNAP seriously!!


Dollar started to rise when Mnuchin FT piece hit “Strong Dollar Over Short-Period Of Time Is Hurting US Economy” which the machines misintepreted…


The Turkish Lira surged 2% overnight after Erdogan’s “successful” referendum, but then started to tumble as OECD and US questioned voiting irregularities…


Treasury yields rose on the day… on relief that thermonuclear war did not break out? Notice bonds did begin to really into the last few minutes of the day.


Stocks and bonds glued tick for tick…


Small bounce back higher in the Trumpflation trades wtih 2s30s and EDZ7EDZ8 steeper (but very marginal)


Crude tumbled back to a $52 handle, RBOB slid lower and gold sold off as the USD lifted in the afternoon…


Finally there’s this…

Trading on Friday:

big event: uSA/Yen tumbles into the 108 column on dismal uSA data!

(courtesy zero hedge)

USDJPY Tumbles To 5-Month Lows After Dismal US Data

More indications that the US economy is not doing anything like as well as the soft survey data would suggest has sparked a fresh round of selling in USDJPY…


Sending Yen to its strongest since just after the Trump election.


This is the biggest weekly drop for USDJPY since July 2016




Retail sales decline for the 2nd straight month /real earnings stagnate:

(courtesy zero hedge)

Retail Sales Decline For Second Straight Month As Real Earnings Stagnate

For the second month in a row, retail sales declined in March as ‘hard’ data fails to live up to ‘soft’ data’s hype. This is the biggest 2-month tumble in retail sales in over 2 years.



The full breakdown shows the biggest declines in building materials and motor vehicles.



This drop in sales should not be total surprise as real average weekly earnings has now failed to rise for 3 straight months.


Two more ‘hard’ data series to add to the list that dismiss the hope embedded in all the soft survey data… but we are sure stocks know better.





The above release on retail sales causes the Atlanta Fed to slash Q1 GDP from 0.6% down to .5%

(courtesy zerohedge)

Atlanta Fed Slashes Q1 GDP Forecast To Just 0.5%, Lowest In Three Years

Just over two months ago, the Atlanta Fed “calculated” that Q1 GDP was going to be a pleasant 3.4%, confirming that the Fed had made the correct decision by hiking not only in December, but also last month. Since then, the Fed’s own GDP estimate has crashed in almost linear fashion, and as of this morning – after the latest disappointing retail sales report – it had plunged to just 0.5%, which if accurate would make Q1 the weakest quarter going back three years to Q1 2014.

From the regional Fed:

The GDPNow model forecast for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the first quarter of 2017 is 0.5 percent on April 14, down from 0.6 percent on April 7. The forecast for first-quarter real consumer spending growth fell from 0.6 percent to 0.3 percent after this morning’s retail sales report from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Consumer Price Index release from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Putting the Atlanta Fed’s forecast in context, a 0.5% GDP would mark the weakest quarter in 37 years, or going back to 1980, in which the Fed hiked rates. Then again, considering today’s abysmal CPI and retail sales data, the narrative to focus on next is not so much hiking, or balance sheet normalization, but when the Fed will resume easing, cut rates (as per Donald Trump’s recent suggestion) and/or launch QE4.



Janet is not going to like this:  Core CPI tumbles for the first time in 7 years and the entire CPI index including food and energy fell 0.3%.  The reflation trade is now officially dead!

(courtesy zero hedge)



Soft Data Slump Begins – Empire Fed Plunges Most In A Year

And so it begins. After exploding higher post-election, it appears the ‘soft’ survey data hype has begun to fade. Empire Fed’s manufacturing survey tumbled most since May 2016 in April, almost erasing the entire post-election surge. New Orders (current and expected) slumped and average workweek caved as Trump’s ‘plans’ remain stymied.

And just like that… hope died.


This won’t end well…

It seems the bond market may have been right after all.



Business must be good! Boeing laying off hundreds of engineers!

(courtesy zero hedge)

Boeing To Lay Off “Hundreds” Of Engineers

President Trump will not be amused. In a letter to employees, Boeing VP John Hamilton announces that the company will lay off “hundreds” of engineers as soon as this week, affecting Washington and “other enterprise locations.”

As Bloomberg headlines show:


The timing is interesting as the Ex-Im Bank discussions hot up and comes just 2 months after Trump visited Boeing’s South Carolina plant.

Standing in front of a new Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner passenger aircraft made at in North Charleston, Trump repeated his campaign promises to promote American production that partly fueled his dizzying path to the White House. He warned of a “substantial penalty” for companies that move jobs out of the United States.


“We want products made by our workers in our factories stamped with those four magnificent words — made in the USA,” Trump said.

The share price is entirely unimpressed…

(courtesy zero hedge)

a must read..

(courtesy David Stockman/Daily Reckoning)

The Trump Reflation Fantasy Ends on Day 100


In honor of the Donald’s “Mother of All Bomb” (MOAB) attack on the Hindu Kush mountains Thursday, let me introduce MOAD.

I’m referring to the “Mother of All Debt” crises, of course. The opening round is coming when Washington goes into shutdown mode on April 28, which happens to be Day 100 of the Donald’s reign.

In theory, this should be just a routine extension of the fiscal year (FY) 2017 continuing resolution (CR) by which Congress is funding the $1.1 trillion compartment of government which is appropriated annually.

The remaining $3 trillion per year of entitlements and debt service is on automatic pilot, but the truth is Washington can’t agree on what to do about either component — except to keeping on borrowing to pay the bills.

There is a problem with this long-running game of fiscal kick-the-can, however. Namely, a 100 year-old statute requires Congress to raise the ceiling for treasury borrowing periodically, but the Imperial City has now reached the point in which there is absolutely no way forward to accomplish this.

Moreover, that critical fact is ill-understood by Wall Street because it does not remotely recognize that all the debt ceiling increases since the public debt exploded after the 2008-09 crisis were an accident of the Obama presidency.

That is, surrounded by Keynesian economic advisers and big spending Democratic politicians, he had no fear of the national debt at all and obviously even believed the more debt the better.

And Obama was also able to bamboozle the establishment GOP leadership led by former Speaker Boehner into steering enough GOP votes to the “responsible” course of action.

Needless to say, Obama is gone, Boehner is gone and the 17-month debt ceiling “holiday” that they confected in October 2015 to ride Washington through the election is gone, too. What’s arrived is vicious partisan warfare, a new President who is clueless about the urgency of the debt crisis and a bloc of 50 or so Freedom Caucus Republicans who now rule Washington.

And good for them!

They genuinely fear and loathe the banana republic financial profligacy that prevails in the Imperial City, and would rip the flesh from Speaker Ryan’s face were he to go the Boehner route and try to assemble a “bipartisan” consensus for a condition-free increase in the debt ceiling.

What that means is a completely new ball game in the Imperial City that will absolutely dominate the agenda as far as the eye can see. That’s because the Freedom Caucus will insist that sweeping entitlement reforms and spending cuts accompany any debt ceiling increase.

Even “moderate” Senator Rob Portman (Ohio) has legislation requiring that dollar for dollar deficit cuts accompany any increase in the debt ceiling.

But if you think the GOP fractures and fissures generated by Obamacare replace and repeal were difficult, you haven’t seen nothin’ yet. There is absolutely no basis for GOP consensus on meaningful deficit cuts, meaning that MOAD will bring endless starts, stops, showdowns and shutdowns, as the U.S. Treasury recurringly exhausts its cash and short-term extensions of its borrowing authority.

In the meanwhile, everything else — health care reform, tax cuts, infrastructure — will become backed-up in an endless queue of legislative impossibilities. Accordingly, there will be no big tax cut in 2017 or even next year. For all practical purposes Uncle Sam is broke and his elected managers are paralyzed.

The Treasury will be out of cash and up against a hard stop debt limit of $19.8 trillion in a matter of months. But long before that there will be a taste of the Shutdown Syndrome on April 28 owing to the accumulating number of “poison pill” “riders” to the CR.

These include the virtual certainty of riders to the House bill to “defund” Planned Parenthood and sanctuary cities. Other extraneous amendments will also possibly include funds demanded by the White House to start the Mexican Wall, enhance deportations and fund some of Trump’s $54 billion defense increase.

By contrast, the Senate Democrats will move heaven and earth to attach mandatory funding for upwards of $7 billion to fund Obamacare, screaming that without these funds massive new premium increases will be needed and/or more insurance companies will withdraw from the Obamacare exchanges next fall.

Unfortunately, such rank demagoguery will almost surely gather considerable support from squishy middle-of-the-road Republicans like Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski.

To be sure, none of these riders have much to do with the mutli-trillion deficit and debt ceiling crises ahead, but they are just as toxic politically.

So when they close down for several days the Washington monument owing to an inability to reach agreement on a trivial $70 million annual funding item for family planning services — the equivalent of nine minutes of annual Federal spending or something that Bill Gates could fund out of his cash drawer — it will not only come as a shock to Wall Street.

It will also embody a warning that there is no consensus on anything or any real semblance of functioning government in Washington, and that as these battles accumulate the degree of dysfunction will only intensify.

Meanwhile, there is another shock heading toward the canyons of Wall Street. Namely, that this so-called recovery is finally running out of gas. I have no use for the seasonally maladjusted and endlessly manipulated, massaged and revised data that come out of the Washington statistical mills.

By contrast, the data that comes out of Uncle Sam’s revenue farebox is an altogether different kettle of fish. That is, no employer in America is paying withholding taxes on payroll slots that do not exist or sending in estimated taxes on profits that are not happening.

Yet after six months of FY 2017 has elapsed, two things are quite evident. First, Federal receipts in March were down on a year over year basis (12 month moving average) for the fourth straight month. The so-called recovery has deflated completely and receipts are now heading lower in the manner that has accompanied prior recessions.

Secondly, the deficit is once again rising rapidly. During the first six months of this fiscal year it totaled $527 billion compared to $459 billion last year, thereby representing a 15% year-over-year gain. And that is something new on the scene, as well.

The kick-the-can fiscal game of the last eight years was enabled originally by Washington’s false fears of Great Depression 2.0 generated during and after the financial crisis by Ben Bernanke and former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson.

And after the crisis passed, by the glib belief that the Federal deficit was steadily falling and would cure itself with the passage of enough time.

That delusion is now off the table — at least among the Freedom Caucus Republicans who rule the roost. So again, the consequence will be a hardening of the lines of battle around MOAD in a manner that has never before been seen in the Imperial City.

As I told Fox Business the other day, it is a stark warning to get out of the casino before it’s too late.

Even if you are not troubled by the outbreak of hostilities at hotspots all around the planet or not inclined to fret about the shocking fact that the Fed is actually contemplating shrinking its balance sheet for the first time in essentially three decades, there is still this:

The U.S. economy is sliding toward recession and the chances that the “stimulus” baton will be handed off to ballyhooed Trump Reflation are lower than those of the proverbial snowball in the hot place.

On April 28, reality is likely to come breaking in and finally shatter all remaining delusion.


David Stockman
for The Daily Reckoning



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