Jan 25/GOLD UP $5.80 TO $1363.00 AT COMEX CLOSING/SILVER IS UP 13 CENTS TO $17.63. IN THE ACCESS MARKET GOLD/SILVER RAIDED AFTER TRUMP IS PARADED OUT AND TELLS US THAT MNUCHIN WAS “MISTAKEN”/COMEX GOLD OI RISES BY A HUGE 15,531 CONTRACTS AND THEN THE CROOKS ISSUE 20,747 EFP CONTRACT TRANSFERS FOR LONDON BASED FORWARDS/SILVER COMEX OI RISES BY 5889 CONTRACTS AND THEN ANOTHER 2865 EFP ISSUANCE FOR LONDON BASED FORWARDS IN SILVER/ ANDREW MAGUIRE’S COMPANY TO BEGIN A CRYPTO CURRENCY 100% BACKED BY GOLD AND SILVER/IN USA THE DEPT OF JUSTICE HAS FOUND OUR LOVE BIRDS’ 50,000 TEXTS/MORE SWAMP STORIES/

 

 

GOLD: $1363.00 UP $5.80

Silver: $17.63 UP 13 cents

Closing access prices:

Gold $1348.50

silver: $17.31

SHANGHAI GOLD FIX: FIRST FIX 10 15 PM EST (2:15 SHANGHAI LOCAL TIME)

SECOND FIX: 2:15 AM EST (6:15 SHANGHAI LOCAL TIME)

SHANGHAI FIRST GOLD FIX: $1371.20 DOLLARS PER OZ

NY PRICE OF GOLD AT EXACT SAME TIME: $1361.60

PREMIUM FIRST FIX: $9.60

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SECOND SHANGHAI GOLD FIX: $1368.90

NY GOLD PRICE AT THE EXACT SAME TIME: $1360.60

Premium of Shanghai 2nd fix/NY:$8.30

SHANGHAI REJECTS NY /LONDON PRICING OF GOLD

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LONDON FIRST GOLD FIX: 5:30 am est $1360.25

NY PRICING AT THE EXACT SAME TIME: $1359.85

LONDON SECOND GOLD FIX 10 AM: $1353.70

NY PRICING AT THE EXACT SAME TIME. $1355.25

For comex gold:

JANUARY/

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR JANUARY CONTRACT: 3 NOTICE(S) FOR 300 OZ.

TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR: 695 FOR 69500 OZ (2.1617 TONNES),

For silver:

jANUARY

1 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR

5,000 OZ/

Total number of notices filed so far this month: 727 for 3,635,000 oz

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Bitcoin: BID $11,132/OFFER $11,232  DOWN $201 (morning)

 Bitcoin: BID   $11,231/OFFER  $11,333 down $100  (CLOSING/4 PM)

end

Let us have a look at the data for today

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In silver, the total open interest ROSE BY A HUGE 5889 contracts from 199,985 RISING TO 205,874 WITH YESTERDAY’S BIG 56 CENT GAIN IN SILVER PRICING.  OBVIOUSLY WE HAD NO COMEX LIQUIDATION. HOWEVER, WE WERE AGAIN NOTIFIED THAT WE HAD ANOTHER HUGE SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE:  2865 EFP’S FOR MARCH AND ZERO FOR OTHER MONTHS  AND THUS TOTAL ISSUANCE OF 2865 CONTRACTS. HOWEVER THE MOVEMENT ACROSS TO LONDON IS NOT AS SEVERE AS IN GOLD AS THERE SEEMS TO BE  MAJOR PLAYERS WILLING TO TAKE ON THE BANKS AT THE COMEX. STILL, WITH THE TRANSFER OF 2865 CONTRACTS, WHAT THE CME IS STATING IS THAT THERE IS NO SILVER (OR GOLD) TO BE DELIVERED UPON AT THE COMEX AS THEY MUST EXPORT THEIR OBLIGATION TO LONDON. ALSO KEEP IN MIND THAT THERE CAN BE A DELAY OF 24 HRS IN THE ISSUING OF EFP’S.

ACCUMULATION FOR EFP’S/SILVER/ STARTING FROM FIRST DAY NOTICE/FOR MONTH OF JANUARY:

40,662 CONTRACTS (FOR 18 TRADING DAYS TOTAL 40,662 CONTRACTS OR 203,31 MILLION OZ: AVERAGE PER DAY: 2259 CONTRACTS OR 11.295 MILLION OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH:  203.31 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON. THIS REPRESENTS AROUND 29.04% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION

RESULT: A HUGE SIZED GAIN IN OI COMEX WITH THE 56 CENT GAIN IN SILVER PRICE.  WE ALSO HAD A HUGE SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 2865 CONTRACTS WHICH EXITED OUT OF THE SILVER COMEX AND TRANSFERRED THEIR OI TO LONDON AS FORWARDS. SPECULATORS CONTINUED THEIR INTEREST IN ATTACKING THE SILVER COMEX FOR PHYSICAL SILVER . FROM THE CME DATA 2865 EFP’S WERE ISSUED FOR TODAY  FOR A DELIVERABLE FORWARD CONTRACT OVER IN LONDON WITH A FIAT BONUS. WE REALLY GAINED 8754 OI CONTRACTS i.e. 2865 open interest contracts headed for London (EFP’s) TOGETHER WITH A INCREASE OF 5889  OI COMEX CONTRACTS. AND ALL OF THIS HAPPENED WITH THE RISE IN PRICE OF SILVER OF 56 CENTS AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $17.50 WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING. YET WE STILL HAVE A GOOD AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX.

In ounces AT THE COMEX, the OI is still represented by just OVER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 1.029 BILLION TO BE EXACT or 147% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).

FOR THE NEW FRONT JANUARY MONTH/ THEY FILED: 3 NOTICE(S) FOR 300 OZ OF SILVER

In gold, the open interest SURPRISINGLY ROSE  BY A HUMONGOUS 15,531 CONTRACTS UP TO 597,952 WITH THE HUGE SIZED RISE IN PRICE OF GOLD WITH YESTERDAY’S TRADING ($25.00). IN ANOTHER HUGE DEVELOPMENT, WE RECEIVED THE TOTAL NUMBER OF GOLD EFP’S ISSUED FOR THURSDAY AND IT TOTALED A HUMONGOUS SIZED  20,747 CONTRACTS OF WHICH FEBRUARY SAW 15,590 CONTRACTS ISSUED AND  APRIL SAW THE ISSUANCE OF 5157 CONTRACTS.    The new OI for the gold complex rests at 599,121. ALSO REMEMBER THAT THERE CAN BE A DELAY IN THE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S.  THE BANKERS REMOVE LONG POSITIONS OF COMEX GOLD IMMEDIATELY.  THEN THEY ORCHESTRATE THEIR PRIVATE EFP DEAL WITH THE LONGS AND THAT COULD TAKE AN ADDITIONAL 48 HRS SO WE GENERALLY DO NOT GET A MATCH WITH RESPECT TO DEPARTING COMEX LONGS AND NEW EFP LONG TRANSFERS. DEMAND FOR GOLD INTENSIFIES GREATLY AS WE CONTINUE TO WITNESS A HUGE NUMBER OF EFP TRANSFERS TOGETHER WITH THE MASSIVE INCREASE IN GOLD COMEX OI  TOGETHER WITH  THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF GOLD OUNCES STANDING FOR JANUARY COMEX. EVEN THOUGH THE BANKERS ISSUED THESE MONSTROUS EFPS, THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH THE BANKERS TO SUPPLY METAL BUT IT TRANSFERS THE RISK TO A LONDON BANKER OBLIGATION AND NOT A NEW YORK COMEX OBLIGATION. LONGS RECEIVE A FIAT BONUS TOGETHER WITH A LONG LONDON FORWARD. THUS, BY THESE ACTIONS, THE BANKERS AT THE COMEX HAVE JUST STATED THAT THEY HAVE NO APPRECIABLE METAL!! THIS IS A MASSIVE FRAUD: THEY CANNOT SUPPLY ANY METAL TO OUR COMEX LONGS BUT THEY ARE QUITE WILLING TO SUPPLY MASSIVE NON BACKED GOLD (AND SILVER) PAPER KNOWING THAT THEY HAVE NO METAL TO SATISFY OUR LONGS. LONDON IS NOW SEVERELY BACKWARD IN BOTH GOLD AND SILVER (BIG RISE IN BOTH GOFO AND SIFO) AND WE ARE WITNESSING DELAYS IN ACTUAL DELIVERIES. IN ESSENCE TODAY WE HAVE A HUGE GAIN OF 36.278  CONTRACTS: 15,531 OI CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX AND A GOOD SIZED  20,747 OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON. EXPECT HUGE NUMBERS OF EFP’S TO BE ISSUED AS WE APPROACH FIRST DAY NOTICE IN THE GOLD FEB COMEX CONTRACT, WEDNESDAY JAN 31.2018

YESTERDAY, WE HAD 12,223 EFP’S ISSUED.

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S/ GOLD(EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF JANUARY STARTING WITH FIRST DAY NOTICE: 185,218 CONTRACTS OR 18.218 MILLION OZ OR 566.65 TONNES (18 TRADING DAYS AND THUS AVERAGING: 10,289 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY OR 1,028,900 OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :   SO FAR THIS MONTH IN 17 TRADING DAYS: IN  TONNES: 567 TONNES

TOTAL ANNUAL GOLD PRODUCTION, 2017, THROUGHOUT THE WORLD EX CHINA EX RUSSIA: 2200 TONNES

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS 567/2200 TONNES =  25.77% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION SO FAR IN JANUARY ALONE.

Result: A SHOCKINGLY STRONG SIZED INCREASE IN OI AT THE COMEX WITH THE HUGE SIZED RISE IN PRICE IN GOLD TRADING ON YESTERDAY ($25.00). WE HAD ANOTHER GIGANTIC SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONG TRANSFERRING TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 20,747. THERE OBVIOUSLY DOES NOT SEEM TO BE MUCH PHYSICAL GOLD AT THE COMEX AND YET WE ALSO OBSERVED A HUGE DELIVERY MONTH FOR THE MONTH OF DECEMBER. I GUESS IT EXPLAINS THE HUGE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S…THERE IS HARDLY ANY GOLD PRESENT AT THE GOLD COMEX FOR DELIVERY PURPOSES. IF YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE 20,747 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED, WE HAD A NET GAIN IN OPEN INTEREST OF 36,278 contractON THE TWO EXCHANGES:

20,747 CONTRACTS MOVE TO LONDON AND  15,531 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX. (in tonnes, the GAIN in total oi equates to 116.47 TONNES).

we had: 3 notice(s) filed upon for 300 oz of gold.

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

GLD

With gold UP $5.80, we had no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/

Inventory rests tonight: 849.32 tonnes.

SLV/ 

A SMALL CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/ WITH SILVER UP TODAY AND YESTERDAY, THEY COULD ONLY MUSTER A GAIN OF 848,00 OZ AT THE SLV /

INVENTORY RESTS AT 313.896 MILLION OZ/

end

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

1. Today, we had the open interest in silver ROSE BY A HUGE 5889 contracts from 199,985 UP TO 205,874 (AND now A LITTLE CLOSER TO THE NEW COMEX RECORD SET ON FRIDAY/APRIL 21/2017 AT 234,787) WITH  THE HUGE RISE  IN PRICE OF SILVER  (56 CENTS WITH RESPECT TO  YESTERDAY’S TRADING).   OUR BANKERS USED THEIR EMERGENCY PROCEDURE TO ISSUE ANOTHER GOOD 2865 PRIVATE EFP’S FOR MARCH (WE DO NOT GET A LOOK AT THESE CONTRACTS AS IT IS PRIVATE BUT THE CFTC DOES AUDIT THEM) AND 0 EFP’S FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS .  EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON. WE HAD ZERO COMEX SILVER COMEX LIQUIDATION. IF WE TAKE THE  OI GAIN AT THE COMEX OF  5889 CONTRACTS TO THE 2865 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S WE OBTAIN A BIG GAIN OF 8754 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS.  WE STILL HAVE A GOOD AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES THAT ARE STANDING FOR METAL IN JANUARY (SEE BELOW). THE NET GAIN TODAY IN OZ ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 43.770 MILLION OZ!!!

RESULT: A HUGE SIZED INCREASE IN SILVER OI AT THE COMEX DESPITE THE HUGE RISE  OF 56 CENTS IN PRICE (WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING). BUT WE ALSO HAD ANOTHER STRONG 2865 EFP’S ISSUED TRANSFERRING COMEX LONGS OVER TO LONDON. TOGETHER WITH THE GOOD  SIZED AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR JANUARY, DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL SILVER INTENSIFIES AS WE WITNESS MAJOR BANK SHORT COVERING ACCOMPANIED BY INCREASES IN GOFO AND SIFO RATES INDICATING SCARCITY.

(report Harvey)

.

2.a) The Shanghai and London gold fix report

(Harvey)

2 b) Gold/silver trading overnight Europe, Goldcore

(Mark O’Byrne/zerohedge

and in NY: Bloomberg

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)Late TUESDAY night/WEDNESDAY morning: Shanghai closed DOWN 11.16 points or 0.31% /Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 304.24 pts or 0.92% / The Nikkei closed DOWN 271,29 POINTS OR 1.13%/Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED DOWN 0.07%/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed  WELL UP at 6.3280/Oil UP to 66.10 dollars per barrel for WTI and 71.00 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED ALL GREED .   ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AGAINST THE DOLLAR AT 6.3280. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AGAINST  THE ONSHORE YUAN AT 6.3230//ONSHORE YUAN MUCH STRONGER AGAINST THE DOLLAR/OFF SHORE MUCH STRONGER TO THE DOLLAR/. THE DOLLAR (INDEX) IS  MUCH WEAKER AGAINST ALL MAJOR CURRENCIES. CHINA IS SEMI  HAPPY TODAY.(STRONG CURRENCY BUT WEAKER MARKETS )

3a)THAILAND/SOUTH KOREA/NORTH KOREA

i)/South Korea/

Wow!! this is a surprise.  The South Korean economy unexpectedly contracts with a huge crash in exports..the most in 33 years.  The South Korean economy is considered a canary for the global economy

( zerohedge)

 ii) North Korea/South Korea

It sure looks like a thawing of the relations between the two Koreas. Now the North is calling on all Koreans to push for unification

(courtesy zerohedge)

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

3 c CHINA

The dollar continues on its nosedive after China threatens the USA with appropriate measures after the USA initiated tariffs on washing machines and on solar panels.

( zerohedge)

4. EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

i)The ECB keeps rates unchanged and reaffirms its taper.  But in a surprise statement they state that they may increase their QE in size and also in duration…and may continue after September if inflation does not meet their needs.

( zerohedge)

ii)The Euro surge was halted but our dollar bulls were not happy as Draghi was not dovish enough. Draghi states that there will be very few chances for a rate hike this year.

( zerohedge)

iii)In a stunning development Draghi slams the comments of Mnuchin and Ross i.e. jawbonning the USA dollar southbound.

(zerohedge)

 

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

Turkey/USA

Turkey disagrees with Trump’s version of a phone call between him and Erdogan.  You can take that the USA release is the accurate one.

( zerohedge)

6 .GLOBAL ISSUES

i)SWEDEN

Malmo is becoming a war zone

( zerohedge)

ii)Bellwether stock Caterpillar, a good indicator of global growth soars to all time highs after beating expectations and boosting guidance.  This goes against South Korea’s export collapse, announced this morning
( zerohedge)

7. OIL ISSUES

8. EMERGING MARKET

9. PHYSICAL MARKETS

i)The gold backed cryptocurrency planned by the Perth mint is supposedly used to entice investors back to metals

(  Landgrafft/ABC/Sydney)

ii)As we brought this to your attention yesterday, the Trump team at Davos wants a weaker dollar.  Trump seems to want greater protectionism for the USA economy

( Bloomberg/GATA)

iii)Craig Hemke discusses the strength in major commodities especially oil and copper.  He questions whether the bullion banks will ever let silver out of their shackles

( Craig Hemke/GATA)

iv)Commerce secretary tries to correct Mnuchin and basically fails as the USA dollar continues on its decent

( CNBC/GATA)

v)In case you missed this yesterday, here is the story that sent the USA dollar into a freefall

( CNBC/GATA)

vi)This will be good for gold and silver as Myanmar (Burma) will now be allowed to import and export gold/silver

( Myanmar Times/GATA)

10. USA stories which will influence the price of gold/silver

i)a.Trading/early this morning

the dollar is crashing again

( zerohedge)

b)And so is bond prices falling as yields spike higher: to 2.67% and that send stocks plunging. The 10 yr yield is the benchmark cost for money.

( zerohedge)

ii)The dollar this morning continues on its downward trajectory buoyed by additional comments by Mnuchin. He reaffirmed his comments that he wants a lower USA dollar to help the USA.  He further complicated the rhetoric by stating that Trump wants a “relaxed” dollar

( zerohedge)

iib) what a joke!!  the dollar surges again after Trump says Mnuchin was misinterpreted..twice.

keystone cops at their finest

(courtesy zerohedge)

iii)New home sales crash in December and the likely candidate is the record high prices for them.  New home sales plunged 9.3% lower/month over month

( zerohedge)

iv)SWAMP STORIES

a)Congressional Republicans are feuding with the FBI on political bias. Republicans and Fox news are demanding the release of the 4 page memo, something that the Democrats do not want released.

a good summary of what is going on…

( zerohedge)

b)Late last night, Fox news reports that the Dept. of Justice has reportedly started recovering many of the missing Strzok/Page texts.

( zerohedge)

b i)And the missing FBI text messages have been found

( zerohedge)

c)In the bombshell 4 page “FISA memo” alleging surveillance abuse by the FBI, the Dept of Justice and the Obama administration, it has now been leaked that 3 people have been named;

  1. FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe
  2. Former FBI director James Comey
  3. and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein

and these guys are inflamed over the leak.

The Democrats are coming out with their memo disputing the facts but it is falling on deaf ears

( zerohedge)

d)Mueller’s probe is now focused on obstruction against Trump.  Yet the Constitution allows him obstruction  as long as it is not a criminal matter.  His mindset against Comey as to his firing his not criminal and thus not subject to Mueller’s probe.  It seems that Mueller’s case is wrapping up much faster than anticipated.
( zerohedge)

Let us head over to the comex:

The total gold comex open interest SHOCKINGLY ROSE BY A HUGE 15,531 CONTRACTS UP to an OI level of 597,952 WITH THE HUGE RISE IN THE PRICE OF GOLD ($25.00 GAIN WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING).   WE HAD SURPRISINGLY NO COMEX GOLD LIQUIDATION. HOWEVER THE CME REPORTS THAT  THE BANKERS ISSUED ANOTHER STRONG COMEX TRANSFER THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE AS THESE LONGS RECEIVED A DELIVERABLE LONDON FORWARD TOGETHER WITH A FIAT BONUS. WE HAD A GOOD SIZED 15,590 EFP’S ISSUED FOR FEBRUARY  AND 5157 EFP’s  FOR APRIL:  TOTAL  20,747 CONTRACTS. THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH THE BANKERS ON THESE TRANSFERS. ALSO REMEMBER THAT THERE CAN BE A DELAY OF UP TO 48 HRS AFTER LONGS GIVE UP THEIR COMEX CONTRACTS AS THEY ARE NEGOTIATING A PRIVATE EFP CONTRACT WITH THE BANKS… THE COMEX IS NOW AN ABSOLUTE FRAUD!!

ON A NET BASIS IN OPEN INTEREST WE GAINED TODAY: 36,278 OI CONTRACTS IN THAT 20,747 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE GAINED 15,531 COMEX CONTRACTS. NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 36,278 contracts OR 3.6278 MILLION OZ  OZ OR 112.83 TONNES

Result: A  SURPRISING AND STRONG  INCREASE IN COMEX OPEN INTEREST DESPITE THE HUGE RISE IN YESTERDAY’S GOLD TRADING ($25.00.) WE HAD NO COMEX GOLD LIQUIDATION.  TOTAL OPEN INTEREST GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 36,278 OI CONTRACTS..

We have now entered the active contract month of JANUARY. The open interest for the front month of JANUARY saw it’s open interest FALL by 20 contracts FALLING TO 6.  We had 8 notices served upon yesterday so we LOST 12  contracts or an additional 1200 oz of gold will NOT  stand AT THE COMEX in this non active month of January as these guys joined others in obtaining a London based forward contract.

FEBRUARY saw a LOSS of 44,211 contacts DOWN to 157,533.  March saw a GAIN of 341 contracts UP to 1656.  April saw a GAIN of 46,858 contracts UP to 304,618.

We had 3 notice(s) filed upon today for 300 oz

PRELIMINARY VOLUME TODAY ESTIMATED;  580,409

FINAL NUMBERS CONFIRMED FOR YESTERDAY:  697,516

comex gold volumes are RISING AGAIN

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And now for the wild silver comex results.

Total silver OI ROSE  BY A HUGE 5,889  CONTRACTS FROM 199,985 UP TO 205,874 WITH YESTERDAY’S HUGE 56 CENT GAIN WE WERE ALSO INFORMED THAT WE HAD ANOTHER GIGANTIC SIZED 2865 EMERGENCY EFP’S FOR MARCH ISSUED BY OUR BANKERS (AND ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS)  TO COMEX LONGS WHO RECEIVED A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON: THE TOTAL EFP’S ISSUED: 2865.   THE SILVER BOYS HAVE STARTED TO MIGRATE TO LONDON FROM THE START OF DELIVERY MONTH AND CONTINUING RIGHT THROUGH UNTIL FIRST DAY NOTICE JUST LIKE WE ARE WITNESSING TODAY. USUALLY WE NOTED THAT CONTRACTION IN OI OCCURRED ONLY DURING THE LAST WEEK OF AN UPCOMING ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH AS WE HAVE JUST SEEN IN GOLD TODAY. THIS PROCESS HAS JUST BEGUN IN EARNEST IN SILVER STARTING IN SEPTEMBER 2017. HOWEVER, IN GOLD, WE HAVE BEEN WITNESSING THIS FOR THE PAST 2 YEARS. NICK LAIRD WAS KIND ENOUGH TO SUPPLY US THE TOTAL FOR 2017 GOLD EFP’S AND IT WAS 6600 TONNES FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR.  WE HAD  ZERO LONG COMEX SILVER LIQUIDATION AND A HUGE SIZED RISE IN TOTAL SILVER OI. WE ARE ALSO WITNESSING A FAIR AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR COMEX METAL IN THIS NON ACTIVE JANUARY AS WELL AS THAT CONTINUAL MIGRATION OF EFPS OVER TO LONDON. ON A PERCENTAGE BASIS THERE ARE MORE EFP’S ISSUED FOR GOLD THAN SILVER.  ON A NET BASIS WE GAINED 8754 SILVER OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS:

5889 CONTRACT GAIN AT THE COMEX COMBINING WITH THE ADDITION OF 2865 OI CONTRACTS NAVIGATING OVER TO LONDON.

NET GAIN TWO EXCHANGES: 8754 CONTRACTS

We are now in the poor non active delivery month of January and here the OI LOST 9 contracts FALLING TO 3.  We had 10 notices served upon yesterday, so we GAINED 1 contract or an additional 5,000 oz will stand for delivery  AT THE COMEX  AND QUEUE JUMPING CONTINUES

February saw a LOSS OF 23 OI contracts FALLING TO 146. The March contract GAINED 3317 contracts UP to 142,036.

We had 1 notice(s) filed for NIL 5,000 for the January 2018 contract for silver

INITIAL standings for JANUARY

Jan 25/2018.

Gold Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oz nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz
 321.500
Scotia
10 kilobars
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory in oz nil oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory, in oz
   nil OZ
No of oz served (contracts) today
3 notice(s)
300 OZ
No of oz to be served (notices)
3 contracts
(300 oz)
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
695 notices
69500 oz
2,1617 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 xxx oz
we had 1 kilobar transaction/
We had 0 inventory movement at the dealer accounts
total inventory movement into the dealer accounts:  nil oz
we had 1 withdrawals into the customer account:
i) Out of Scotia: 321.50 oz
total withdrawal: 321.50  oz
we had 0 customer deposit
total deposits: nil oz
we had 1 adjustments
 i) out of HSBC, 22,041.942 oz was removed from the dealer and this landed into the customer account of the HSBC
total registered or dealer gold:  564,459.531 oz or 17.557 tonnes
total registered and eligible (customer) gold;   9,313,221.043 oz 289.68 tones

For JANUARY:
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 3 contract(s) of which 0 notices were stopped (received) by j.P. Morgan dealer and 0 notice(s) was (were) stopped/ Received) by j.P.Morgan customer account.

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To calculate the INITIAL total number of gold ounces standing for the JANUARY. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (695) x 100 oz or 69500 oz, to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of JAN. (6 contracts) minus the number of notices served upon today (3 x 100 oz per contract) equals 69,800 oz, the number of ounces standing in this active month of JANUARY

Thus the INITIAL standings for gold for the JANUARY contract month:

No of notices served (695 x 100 oz or ounces + {(6)OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (3 x 100 oz which equals 69,800 oz standing in this active delivery month of JANUARY (2.1710 tonnes). THERE IS 17.557 TONNES OF REGISTERED GOLD AVAILABLE FOR DELIVERY SO FAR.

WE LOST 2 CONTRACTS OR AN ADDITIONAL 200 OZ WILL NOT STAND IN THIS NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF JANUARY (DATA CORRECTED FROM YESTERDAY)

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ON FIRST DAY NOTICE FOR JANUARY 2017, THE INITIAL GOLD STANDING: 3.904 TONNES STANDING

BY THE END OF THE MONTH: FINAL: 3.555 TONNES STOOD FOR COMEX DELIVERY AS THE REMAINDER HAD TRANSFERRED OVER TO LONDON FORWARDS.

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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.

IN THE LAST 15 MONTHS 65 NET TONNES HAS LEFT THE COMEX.

end

And now for silver

AND NOW THE DECEMBER DELIVERY MONTH

DECEMBER FINAL standings

Jan 25 2018
Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
 nil oz
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
nil
oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory
 1,199,756.010 oz
 CNT
No of oz served today (contracts)
1
CONTRACT(S)
(5,000 OZ)
No of oz to be served (notices)
2 contracts
(10,000 oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts) 727 contracts

(3,635,000 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

we had no inventory movement at the dealer side of things

total inventory movement dealer: nil oz

we had 1 inventory deposits into the customer account

i) CNT  Deposit:  1,199,756.010  oz

total inventory deposits: 1,199,756.010 oz

we had 0 withdrawals from the customer account;

total withdrawals;  nil oz

we had 0 adjustment

total dealer silver:  45.461 million

total dealer + customer silver:  247.148 million oz

The total number of notices filed today for the JANUARY. contract month is represented by 1 contract(s) FOR 5,000 oz. To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in JANUARY., we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at 727 x 5,000 oz = 3,635,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of JAN. (3) and the number of notices served upon today (1 x 5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

.

Thus the INITIAL standings for silver for the JANUARY contract month: 727(notices served so far)x 5000 oz + OI for front month of JANUARY(3) -number of notices served upon today (1)x 5000 oz equals 3,645,000 oz of silver standing for the JANUARY contract month. This is VERY GOOD for this NONACTIVE delivery month of JANUARY.  WE GAINED 1 CONTRACTS OR AN ADDITIONAL 5,000  OZ WILL  STAND FOR DELIVERY IN THIS NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF JANUARY AS QUEUE JUMPING CONTINUES AS WE PROCEED TO MONTH’S END.

ON FIRST DAY NOTICE FOR THE JANUARY 2017 CONTRACT WE HAD 3.790 MILLION OZ STAND.

THE FINAL STANDING: 3,730 MILLION OZ

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

I almost fell from my chair:  we received volumes at the comex and they were on time

ESTIMATED VOLUME FOR TODAY: 107,890

CONFIRMED VOLUME FOR YESTERDAY:  132,365 CONTRACTS

YESTERDAY’S CONFIRMED VOLUME OF 132,265 CONTRACTS EQUATES TO  662 MILLION OZ OR 94.5% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION OF SILVER

COMMODITY LAW SUGGESTS THAT OPEN INTEREST SHOULD NOT BE MORE THAN 3% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION. THE CROOKS ARE SUPPLYING MASSIVE PAPER TRYING TO KEEP SILVER IN CHECK.

The record level of silver open interest is 234,787 contracts set on April 21./2017 with the price at that day at $18.42
The previous record was 224,540 contracts with the price at that time of $20.44

end

NPV for Sprott 

1. Sprott silver fund (PSLV): NAV RISES TO -2.18% (Jan 26/2018)
2. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV RISES TO -0.38% to NAV (Jan 24/2018 )
Note: Sprott silver trust back into NEGATIVE territory at -2.18%-/Sprott physical gold trust is back into NEGATIVE/ territory at -0.38%/Central fund of Canada’s is still in jail but being rescued by Sprott.
Sprott WINS hostile 3.1 billion bid to take over Central Fund of Canada

(courtesy Sprott/GATA)

3.SPROTT CEF.A FUND (FORMERLY CENTRAL FUND OF CANADA): NAV FALLS TO 3.64%: NAV 14.12/TRADING 13.60//DISCOUNT 3.64%

END

And now the Gold inventory at the GLD/

jan 25/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/inventory rests at 849.32 tonnes

Jan 24/A HUGE DEPOSIT OF 2.65 TONNES OF GOLD INTO GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 849.32 TONNES

Jan 23/NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY DESPITE GOLD’S RISE/INVENTORY RESTS AT 846.67 TONNES

Jan 22/a huge deposit of 5.71 tonnes of gold despite a drop in price/inventory rests at 846.67 tonnes. In 3 trading days, the GLD has added 17.71 tonnes/the bankers are now in trouble!!

Jan 19/no change in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 840.76 tonnes

Jan 18/SHOCKINGLY A HUGE DEPOSIT OF 11.80 TONNES WITH GOLD DOWN ALMOST $12.00/INVENTORY RESTS AT 840.76

Jan 17/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/inventory rests at 828.96 tonnes

Jan 16/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 828.96 TONNES

Jan 12/no changes in inventory at the GLD despite the rise in gold price/inventory rests at 828.96 tonnes

Jan 11/ANOTHER IDENTICAL WITHDRAWAL OF 2.95 TONNES FROM THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 828.96 TONNES

Jan 10/with gold up today, a strange withdrawal of 2.95 tonnes/inventory rests at 831.91 tonnes

Jan 9/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 834.88 tonnes

Jan 8/with gold falling by a tiny $1.40 and this being after 12 consecutive gains, today they announce another 1.44 tonnes of gold withdrawal from the GLD/

Jan 5/NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 836.32 TONNES

Jan 4/2018/no change in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.32 tonnes

Jan 3/a huge withdrawal of 1.18 tonnes of gold from the GLD/Inventory rests at 836.32 tonnes

Jan 2/2018/no changes in gold inventory at the GLD/inventory rests at 837.50 tonnes

Dec 29/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 837.50 TONNES

Dec 28/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 837.50 TONNES

Dec 27/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/ INVENTORY RESTS AT 837.50 TONNES

Dec 26/no change in gold inventory at the GLD

Dec 22/ A DEPOSIT OF 1.48 TONNES OF GOLD INTO GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 837.50 TONNES

Dec 21′ NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 836.02 TONNES

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Jan 25/2018/ Inventory rests tonight at 849.32 tonnes

*IN LAST 315 TRADING DAYS: 91.83 NET TONNES HAVE BEEN REMOVED FROM THE GLD
*LAST 249 TRADING DAYS: A NET 65.48 TONNES HAVE NOW BEEN ADDED INTO GLD INVENTORY.

end

Now the SLV Inventory

Jan 25/with silver up today and yesterday, the SLV could only muster a gain of 848,000 oz

jan 24/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY DESPITE THE GOOD ADVANCE IN PRICE/INVENTORY RESTS AT 313.048 MILLION OZ/

Jan 23/ANOTHER HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 1.131 MILLION OZ OF SILVER DESPITE THE TINY LOSS/THE CROOKS ARE USING THE INVENTORY TO RAID ON SILVER.

JAN 22.2018/with silver down by 5 cents/ the crooks at the SLV liquidate 1.321 million oz of silver/inventory rests at 314.179 million oz/

Jan 19/ no changes in silver inventory at the SLV/inventory rests at 315.500 million oz/

jan 18/A WITHDRAWAL OF 848,000 OZ OF SILVER FROM THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 315.500 MILLION OZ/

Jan 17/no changes in silver inventory at the SLV/inventory rests at 316.348 million oz/

Jan 16/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.348  MILLION OZ

Jan 12/no changes in silver inventory at the SLV/inventory rests at 316.348 million oz/

Jan 11/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.348 MILLION OZ/

Jan 10/with silver up again, we had a huge withdrawal of 1.227 million oz from the SLV/inventory rests at 316.348 million oz

Jan 9/a withdrawal of 848,000 oz from the SLV/Inventory rests at 317.575 million oz/

jan 8/no change in silver inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 318.423 million oz/

Jan 5/DESPITE NO CHANGE IN SILVER PRICING, WE HAD A HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 2.026 MILLION OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.423 MILLION OZ.

Jan 4.2018/a slight withdrawal of 180,000 oz and this would be to pay for fees/inventory rests at 320.449 million oz/

Jan 3/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.629 MILLION OZ.

Jan 2/WITH SILVER UP DRAMATICALLY THESE PAST 4 TRADING DAYS, THE FOLLOWING MAKES NO SENSE: WE HAD A WITHDRAWAL OF 2.83 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV

INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.629 MILLION OZ/

Dec 29/no changes in silver inventory at the SLV/inventory rests at 323.459 million oz/

Dec 28/DESPITE THE RISE IN SILVER AGAIN BY 13 CENTS, WE LOST ANOTHER 1,251,000 OZ OF SILVER FROM THE SILVER.

Dec 27/WITH SILVER UP AGAIN BY 17 CENTS, WE LOST ANOTHER 802,000 OZ OF SILVER INVENTORY/WHAT CROOKS/INVENTORY RESTS AT 324.780 MILLION OZ/

Dec 26/no change in silver inventory at the SLV./Inventory rests at 325.582

Dec 21/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 326.227 MILLION OZ/

.

Jan 25/2017:

Inventory 313.896 million oz

end

6 Month MM GOFO
Indicative gold forward offer rate for a 6 month duration

+ 1.81%
12 Month MM GOFO
+ 2.13%

Major gold/silver trading /commentaries for THURSDAY

GOLDCORE/BLOG/MARK O’BYRNE.

GOLD/SILVER

Is This The Greatest Stock Market Bubble In History? Goldnomics Podcast

GoldNomics Podcast (Episode 2) Is This The Greatest Stock Market Bubble In History?

In our second GoldNomics podcast, we take a look at one of the important financial questions of our day – is this the greatest stock market bubble in history?

Listen on iTunesSoundCloud and Blubrry
Watch on YouTube below

GoldCore CEO Stephen Flood and GoldCore’s Research Director and world renowned precious metals commentator Mark O’Byrne in conversation with Dave Russell discuss why U.S. stock markets appear overvalued and are likely in a bubble.

  Key topics covered include:

  • Do the fundamentals justify the massive gains in US stocks in recent years (rise of over 300% in the S&P 500 since 2009)?
  • Does the U.S. have a perfect ‘Goldilocks economy’ or a vulnerable ‘Food stamp economy’?
  • Are we in a ultra low interest rate, liquidity driven “everything bubble”?
  • Is margin debt one of the factors driving speculation in stocks and a stock market bubble?
  • Is there ‘irrational exuberance’ and overly bullish sentiment as seen in the recent headline ‘Stock market never goes down anymore’?
  • Will the printing of currency lead to its devaluation against real money gold which cannot be printed?
  • Are higher allocations to gold of up to 20% or 30% warranted given the significant risks of today?
  • Are there cyber risks to digital wealth and digital currencies including online deposits?
  • Is there a case for physical gold that you can hold outside of the digital and financial system?
  • What should people do to protect and grow their wealth in 2018 and the coming years?

GoldNomics Podcasts

Gold, Stocks, Bitcoin in 2018. Everything Bubble Bursts? (GoldNomics Podcast Episode 1) 

News and Commentary

Gold Posts Highest Close Since 2016 in Heavy Trading (Bloomberg.com)

Gold hits 1-1/2-year high as dollar slumps to three-year low (Reuters.com)

Asian Equities Decline, U.S. Dollar Extends Slide (Bloomberg.com)

Trump Team at Davos Backs Weaker Dollar, Sharpens Trade War Talk (Bloomberg.com)

Dollar skids to three-year low as Mnuchin welcomes currency weakness (Reuters.com)

Gold-backed cryptocurrency planned by Perth Mint to entice investors back to metals (ABC.net.au)


Source: Bloomberg

Video: Dalio Warns That Rise in Yields Could Spark Bond Crash (Bloomberg.com)

Gold Jumps To Crucial Technical Level. Important Action Coming Up (GoldSeek.com)

Warning: The Financial System Just Made a Tectonic Shift (ZeroHedge.com)

Dollar Dumps Below Key Level – Worst Start To A Year Since 2003 (ZeroHedge.com)

Is the U.S. consumer in trouble? (StansBerryChurcHouse.com)

Gold Prices (LBMA AM)

25 Jan: USD 1,360.25, GBP 954.35 & EUR 1,095.27 per ounce
24 Jan: USD 1,350.50, GBP 957.50 & EUR 1,093.77 per ounce
23 Jan: USD 1,337.10, GBP 959.10 & EUR 1,091.74 per ounce
22 Jan: USD 1,334.15, GBP 959.12 & EUR 1,087.87 per ounce
19 Jan: USD 1,335.80, GBP 960.17 & EUR 1,087.74 per ounce
18 Jan: USD 1,329.75, GBP 961.14 & EUR 1,088.40 per ounce
17 Jan: USD 1,337.35, GBP 969.45 & EUR 1,092.48 per ounce

Silver Prices (LBMA)

25 Jan: USD 17.52, GBP 12.29 & EUR 14.12 per ounce
24 Jan: USD 17.19, GBP 12.16 & EUR 13.93 per ounce
23 Jan: USD 16.98, GBP 12.19 & EUR 13.87 per ounce
22 Jan: USD 17.04, GBP 12.25 & EUR 13.90 per ounce
19 Jan: USD 17.04, GBP 12.27 & EUR 13.89 per ounce
18 Jan: USD 17.09, GBP 12.31 & EUR 13.96 per ounce
17 Jan: USD 17.21, GBP 12.49 & EUR 14.10 per ounce


Recent Market Updates

– Cyber War Coming In 2018?
– Government Shutdown Ends – Markets Ignore Looming Debt and Bond Market Threat
– Global Pension Ponzi – Carillion Collapse One Of Many To Come
– The Next Great Bull Market in Gold Has Begun – Rickards
– Gold Bullion May Have Room to Run As Chinese New Year Looms
– Digital Gold Flight To Physical Gold Coins and Bars
– Gold and Silver Bullion Are Only “Safe Investments Left” – Stockman
– Silver Prices To Surge – JP Morgan Has Acquired A “Massive Quantity of Physical Silver”
– London Property Crash Looms As Prices Drop To 2 1/2 Year Low
– Gold Bullion Up 1% In Week, Heads For 5th Weekly Gain As Bonds Sell Off
– Gold Prices Rise To $1,326/oz as China U.S. Treasury Buying Report Creates Volatility
– Gold Hits All-Time Highs Priced In Emerging Market Currencies
– World is $233 Trillion In Debt: UK Personal Debt At New Record
– 10 Reasons Why You Should Add To Your Gold Holdings

Mark O’Byrne
Executive Director

END

for those that missed Andrew Maguire’s email to myself and Bill Murphy of GATA

I am repeating it.  It is huge!!

Have I got another bombshell for you! This is a heads up .

I have been keeping my head down for some months now working as an advisory board member and strategic advisor for the Allocated Bullion Exchange. https://abx.com/. After 6 years of building out independent fully allocated trading hubs, we are now ready to launch our fully 100% gold and silver backed crypto currency.

While other gold backed solutions such as Eric’s are very helpful, this currency differs in every respect. This is an entire gold/silver backed ecosystem that already has the power of adoption by the Indonesian post office system which transacts $9.6 Billion in cross border migrant worker fees, as well as adoption by the largest 100Million member Islamic Financial group . Attached is the press release from 1 minute ago also linked here….https://abx.com/2018/01/23/ptpos-abx/

There is much more. Every hedge fund we have discussed this with under NDA’s has committed ALL their physical holdings into this currency. The beauty of this is that bullion does not have to move out of the holder’s direct control and remains 100% allocated in their name, it simply draws a yield. This will also draw in large, institutional money to buy gold vs. treasuries etc as the yield is far greater.

The whitepaper will be released in the next 24 hours and will detail how this currency is able to do this with Zero risk.

The currency will have billions of dollars of liquidity day one. Each once transacted is 100% backed by gold and silver and the bottom up demand cannot be fought by the cartel or officials. Every aspect of our currency meets all the KYC requirements and cannot be stopped. This enormous fresh bullion demand flowing in from Asian post offices alone let alone how much of the $800 billion unbacked, volatile crypto currency market will want to convert to a currency that has an intrinsic value and also returns them a yield. This gold and silver bullion buying is going to be conducted through our very liquid ABX vaulting network and will backwash into the LBMA forcing the offer to sell to rise.

This is going to accelerate the inevitable gold silver market reset in a highly leveraged ‘at the margin’ market.

Bill, you will remember March 23rd 2010 well. That bombshell caused the industry a lot of pain along with industry apologist J. Christian, and we know how officials closed ranks thereafter.

After my lawyers and I walked out of the DOJ building in 2011 having just presented 88 clear examples of LIBOR style collusion and market rigging in the gold and silver markets, and the words still ringing in my ears, ” but what about the economic consequences of this”, I knew we had to attack this cartel from a different angle. To find an intelligent way of breaking the paper markets with one objective in mind, to assist in the rollout of a cartel bomb, it is now ready!

We will be launching it this week. This is not just a 100% gold and silver backed currency already adopted by the largest Islamic financial group with 100Million members, (yet to be announced), this is a gold and silver backed currency with a yield that will be enrich everybody.

I will get you the whitepaper as soon as we release it, in the meantime, if it’s of any help or if you feel it contributes anything to le-metropole, please feel free to publish my subscriber commentary dealing with EFP’s etc. Please find a copy of my subscriber commentary from Sunday attached.

The full public announcement will be within the next 24 hours.

This is it guys, we’re going to take down the paper marker at last!!

Best
Andrew

ABX-PT-POS-PR.pdf
Commentary 21st January 2018.pdf

end

The gold backed cryptocurrency planned by the Perth mint is supposedly used to entice investors back to metals

(courtesy  Landgrafft/ABC/Sydney)

Gold-backed cryptocurrency planned by Perth Mint to entice investors back to metals

 Section: 

By Tara de Landgrafft
Australian Broadcasting Corp., Sydney
Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Australia’s biggest gold refiner, the Perth Mint, is developing its own cryptocurrency backed by physical precious metals.

The ambitious plan, which is subject to a confidentiality agreement, will make it easier for consumers to buy gold.

The mint also plans to make use of blockchain technology, first used as the core component of the digital currency bitcoin, where it works as a public ledger for transactions.

In the 10 years since its inception, blockchain has been used to track transactions in industries from agriculture to land registration and the music recording industry.

For the Perth Mint, the need to bring investors back to precious metals after a boom in alternative investments such as cryptocurrencies posed an opportunity, according to chief executive Richard Hayes. …

… For the remainder of the report:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-24/cryptocurrency-backed-by-gold-bein

END

As we brought this to your attention yesterday, the Trump team at Davos wants a weaker dollar.  Trump seems to want greater protectionism for the USA economy

(courtesy Bloomberg/GATA)

Trump team at Davos backs weaker dollar, sharpens trade war talk

 Section: 

By Enda Curran and Jan Dahinten
Bloomberg News
Wednesday, January 24, 2018

President Donald Trump’s top economic advisers set the stage for the rollout of his “America First” manifesto on the world stage.

A day before Trump’s scheduled arrival in the Swiss ski resort of Davos for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin endorsed the dollar’s decline as a benefit to the American economy and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the U.S. would fight harder to protect its exporters.

“Obviously a weaker dollar is good for us as it relates to trade and opportunities,” Mnuchin told reporters in Davos. The currency’s short term value is “not a concern of ours at all,” he said.

“Longer term, the strength of the dollar is a reflection of the strength of the U.S. economy and the fact that it is and will continue to be the primary currency in terms of the reserve currency,” he said. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-01-24/mnuchin-says-weaker-d…

END

Craig Hemke discusses the strength in major commodities especially oil and copper.  He questions whether the bullion banks will ever let silver out of their shackles

(courtesy Craig Hemke/GATA)

Craig Hemke: Will the bullion banks ever let silver join commodities rally?

 Section: 

10:07a ET Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Weakness in the U.S. dollar, the TF Metals Report’s Craig Hemke writes today at Sprott Money, is being reflected in the prices of major commodities, particularly oil and copper, but not in silver, whose market is “easily the most manipulated in the world.”

So will silver ever rise and catch up to the rest?

“The dollar weakness suggests it,” Hemke writes. “Other commodities suggest it. The commitment-of-traders structure suggests it. But will the banks allow it?”

Hemke’s analysis is headlined “Positioning Ahead of Additional Dollar Weakness” and it’s posted at Sprott Money here:

https://www.sprottmoney.com/Blog/positioning-ahead-of-additional-dollar-…

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.
CPowell@GATA.org

END

Commerce secretary tries to correct Mnuchin and basically fails as the USA dollar continues on its decent

(courtesy CNBC/GATA)

Commerce secretary says U.S. isn’t abandoning ‘strong dollar’ policy

 Section: 

By Matthew J. Belvedere
CNBC, New York
Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross took issue today with media characterizations that the United States is departing from its historically strong dollar policy.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin’s remarks at a news conference at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland should not be interpreted as a call for a weaker U.S. currency, Ross told CNBC.

Earlier today Mnuchin said, “Obviously, a weaker dollar is good for us as it relates to trade and opportunities,” but he added that the short-term value is “not a concern of ours at all” and “longer term, the strength of the dollar is a reflection of the strength of the U.S. economy.”

The Trump administration has made stronger economic growth a top priority.

Ross said in a “Squawk Box” interview from Davos that Mnuchin “was not advocating anything” in terms of the dollar. “I think what he exactly said is the dollar, just like the Treasury bond market, is a huge market, a very liquid market. It’s not something we worry a lot about day by day,” Ross argued. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/24/commerce-secretary-wilbur-ross-theres-a-…

END

In case you missed this yesterday, here is the story that sent the USA dollar into a freefall

(courtesy CNBC/GATA)

Mnuchin comment surprises markets, turns dollar decline into ‘one-way bet’

 Section: 

By Patti Domm
CNBC, New York
Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s comment that a weak dollar is good for the country accelerated a decline in the currency and fed fears in a market already speculating that White House may make the dollar less attractive for the longer term. …

Mnuchin’s comments echo statements by President Donald Trump, who famously helped turn a market trend of a stronger dollar last January when he said, prior to his inauguration, that the dollar was “too strong” and that U.S. companies can’t compete because of it, particularly against the Chinese. The dollar index has lost more than 10 percent since then, and after Mnuchin’s comment this morning, it sank to a new three-year low.

The comments also depart from the policy of the past three presidential administrations and Treasury secretaries, going back to Robert Rubin, to support a strong dollar policy, at least publicly. Prior to Trump, presidents in recent history have refrained from talking the currency up or down. …

While the weak dollar could help U.S. exports, strategists point out it devalues all types of U.S. assets, including Treasurys, and makes the cost of goods from overseas more expensive for everyone from manufacturers to everyday Americans.

Whether a weak dollar policy was the intended message or not, the fact that Mnuchin made the comments at a briefing at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, was not lost on the market. The forum is viewed as the bastion of globalization and free trade, while Trump officials have been or are expected to reaffirm the administration’s America first policies, seen as protectionist by some.

“I think you could have a situation where cyclical forces come into play, and it snaps back, but for now, they’ve put a wild card on the dollar, which could tell you that normal cyclical forces won’t operate,” said Robert Sinche, chief global strategist at Amherst Pierpont. “They basically open this up as a one-way bet for traders, and traders will keep pushing it and keep pushing it. … Who’s going to stand in front of it? It’s not a healthy global environment.”

The Trump administration, which this week slapped new tariffs on Asian washing machines and solar panels, sees a weaker dollar as a positive for American exporters. But on the other hand, the market has been worrying about the fact that central banks are clearly diversifying reserve holdings away from the dollar, and U.S. assets, like Treasurys, could become less appealing.

“I think the dollar will stay the reserve currency — We’re too big and too influential — but does it mean people have to hold so many dollar assets if the administration says this is not a good place to hold your money, particularly with a trillion-dollar deficit? There’s a long way down,” Sinche said. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/24/mnuchin-comment-surprises-financial-mark…

END

This will be good for gold and silver as Myanmar (Burma) will now be allowed to import and export gold/silver

(courtesy Myanmar Times/GATA)

Myanmar legalizes gold imports and exports

 Section: 

Gold Exports Now Permitted in Myanmar

By Thiha Ko Ko
Myanmar Times, Yangon
Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Gold and gold jewelry and accessories have been legally cleared for import and export, the Ministry of Commerce said Monday.

Traders will now be able to sell gold, which is mined as a natural resource in Myanmar, to buyers overseas. The move is the first step in a government effort to establish a legal gold market in which local and international traders can engage. By doing so, the government also hopes to raise tax revenues, said U Khin Maung Lwin, the ministry’s assistant secretary.

Allowing the export of Myanmar gold, which was prohibited in the past, actually took the ministry three years.

Now gold, gold jewelry, and accessories with gold can be traded via air and sea routes as well as across the border. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.mmtimes.com/news/gold-exports-now-permitted-myanmar.html

END

Toronto’s Financial Post:

Only two bidders for Scotiabank’s precious metals business.  Both are crooked.

No doubt future liabilities will play a big part in the offer

(courtesy Toronto’s Financial Post)

Goldman, Citi final bidders for Scotiabank’s metals business: sources

Most of ScotiaMocatta’s business is in precious metals and it’s one of five banks that clear bullion in London’s US$5 trillion a year gold market

LONDON — The field of prospective bidders for ScotiaMocatta, the metals trading arm of Canada’s Bank of Nova Scotia, has narrowed to two, three banking and industry sources said on Wednesday.

The two – Goldman Sachs Group and Citi – are undertaking due diligence checks, the sources said.

The sources said Japanese trading house Sumitomo and Australian bank ANZ (Australia and New Zealand Banking Group), which had also expressed interest, were not taking their offers forward and there was no certainty a deal would be reached.

Scotiabank did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Goldman and Citi declined to comment.

LAWSUITS

Scotiabank hired JPMorgan to help with the sale after conducting a review of its metals business in 2016 following a string of lawsuits related to the manipulation of gold and silver price benchmarks and due to dissatisfaction over its performance, sources said.

It aims to complete the process by the end of March 2018.

The sources said that Scotiabank’s price tag of up to US$1 billion for ScotiaMocatta was unlikely to be met by the suitors.

“I think the process will see the great majority of the business move to a new owner but would definitely expect there to be subsequent trimming, either by sale or closure,” one said.

The bulk of ScotiaMocatta’s business is in precious metals and it is one of five banks that clear bullion in London’s US$5 trillion a year gold market, the world’s biggest.

PRECIOUS METALS

Citi trades precious metals and does some hedging and financing business for some of Canada’s gold producers. Buying Scotia’s business would give them a much larger precious metals trading book, one of the sources said.

Goldman Sachs has been seeking to turn around its commodities business by hiring a number of executives after reporting weak revenues in 2017.

Goldman was one of five banks that invested several million dollars in designing and building gold and silver contracts launched by the London Metal Exchange in July.

A fourth source said Goldman would be mostly interested in Scotia’s mine finance business.

ScotiaMocatta is one of London’s main gold trading banks with a history dating back to the 17th century. It was acquired by Scotiabank from Standard Chartered in 1997 and employs more than 160 people in 10 offices around the world, according to its website.

Market sources put Scotiabank’s annual revenues from the precious metals unit at US$100-US$180 million with operating margins of around 25 per cent.

END

One of the largest commodity hedge funds is shutting down, Jamison.  They are probably not playing the EFP game in gold and silver as this would give them instant profits

(courtesy zerohedge)

One Of The Largest Commodity Hedge Funds Shuts Down

Less than five years ago, commodity and macro markets trader Stephen Jamison was facing an avalanche of clients desperate to give his Jamison Capital Partners money to manage, ultimately forcing him to close his macro commodity fund to new investors after nearly doubling its capital to $1.5 billion in 2012, making it one of the biggest players in the commodity space. Jamison, a former Morgan Stanley trader, mainly invested in commodities but “would turn to other assets such as treasuries and equities when he sees better opportunities.”

Fast forward to today when things are decidedly bleaker for Jamison and his Jamison Capital, because as Reutersreports, the New York-based commodity hedge fund will be shutting its nearly $1.5 billion macro commodity fund and converting to a family office, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

It won’t be the first commodity/macro fund to admit defeat in a market in which nothing makes sense. The closure of Jamison, one of the largest commodity-focused hedge funds, comes after several other big names have closed shop in recent months. They include hedge fund manager Andy Hall, who closed his Astenbeck Capital Management last summer, and Texas tycoon T. Boone Pickens, who said this month that he was closing his fund, in part due to declining health.

Performance did not help: Jamison was down 9% last year, Reuters cites sources familiar, partially due to losses on natural gas in the second half of the year.

It was a bad year for many: numerous trading firms and banks reported poor results in 2017 due to muted client activity and wild fluctuations across energy markets. As we reported previously, Goldman Sachs said the second quarter of 2017 was its worst quarter on record in commodities, which was also due to a nat gas bet gone bad:

“Goldman wagered that gas prices in the Marcellus Shale in Ohio and Pennsylvania would rise with the construction of new pipelines to carry gas out of the region, said people familiar with the matter. Instead, prices there fell sharply in May and June as a key pipeline ran into problems.”

It was not immediately clear if, like Pierre Andurand’s closure last year, any residual liquidation of asset holdings would impact the market.



Your early THURSDAY morning currency, Asian stock market results,  important USA/Asian currency crosses, gold/silver pricing overnight along with the price of oil Major stories overnight/9 AM EST

 

i) Chinese yuan vs USA dollar/CLOSED UP AT 6.3280 /shanghai bourse CLOSED DOWN AT 11.16 POINTS 0.31% / HANG SANG CLOSED DOWN 304.24 POINTS OR 0.92%
2. Nikkei closed DOWN 271,29 POINTS OR 1.13% /USA: YEN FALLS TO 108.98

3. Europe stocks OPENED GREEN   /USA dollar index FALLS TO 89.14/Euro RISES TO 1.2413

3b Japan 10 year bond yield: RISES TO . +.086/ GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 108.98/ THIS IS TROUBLESOME AS BANK OF JAPAN IS RUNNING OUT OF BONDS TO BUY./JAPAN 10 YR YIELD FINALLY IN THE POSITIVE/BANK OF JAPAN LOSING CONTROL OF THEIR YIELD CURVE AS THEY PURCHASE ALL BONDS TO GET TO ZERO RATE!!

3c Nikkei now JUST BELOW 17,000

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

3e WTI:: 66.10  and Brent: 71.00

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 UP for WTI and UP FOR Brent this morning

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund RISES TO +.585%/Italian 10 yr bond yield DOWN to 1.901% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD UP TO 1.373%

3j Greek 10 year bond yield FALLS TO : 3.68?????????????????

3k Gold at $1358.45 silver at:17.50: 6 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $18.50

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble UP 30/100 in roubles/dollar) 55.84

3m oil into the 66 dollar handle for WTI and 71 handle for Brent/

3n Higher foreign deposits out of China sees huge risk of outflows and a currency depreciation. This can spell financial disaster for the rest of the world/

JAPAN ON JAN 29.2016 INITIATES NIRP. THIS MORNING THEY SIGNAL THEY MAY END NIRP. TODAY THE USA/YEN TRADES TO 108.98 DESTROYING JAPANESE CITIZENS WITH HIGHER FOOD INFLATION

30 SNB (Swiss National Bank) still intervening again in the markets driving down the SF. It is not working: USA/SF this morning 0.9416 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.1684 well 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.

3p BRITAIN VOTES AFFIRMATIVE BREXIT/LOWER PARLIAMENT APPROVES BREXIT COMMENCEMENT/ARTICLE 50 COMMENCES MARCH 29/2017

3r the 10 Year German bund now POSITIVE territory with the 10 year RISING to +0.585%

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 2.630% early this morning. Thirty year rate at 2.914% /

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

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

Dollar Tumbles To 3 Year Low As Futures, Oil Rebound

Another day, another rout in the USD index, with the Bloomberg dollar index sliding for the 4th consecutive day to the lowest level since December 2014 after Asian participants were able to react to yesterday’s comments from US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin, which he refused to deny  in follow up Davos commentary on Thursday.

With the dollar tumbling, the EUR hit a new three year high ahead of the ECB’s policy decision this morning (full preview here) before stabilizing around 1.24 as investors wait to see if ECB President Draghi can stem its advance later today when explaining the central bank’s rate decision.

Concerns about U.S. protectionism kept the dollar weak after its worst day in six months, but it was the ECB’s first meeting of 2018, and when it will end its 2.6 trillion euro stimulus programme, that was attracting attention. Another challenge facing policymakers is how to address the euro’s surge – it hit a three-year high of over $1.24 on Thursday – as this could dampen inflation and endanger the work done by years of unprecedented stimulus.

The USDJPY treaded water just below 109, where a number of stops are said to be waiting. Kiwi dropped lower on weaker-than-expected 4Q CPI data only to pare losses as dollar selling resumes across the board.

With offshore currencies surging it was a mixed picture across European stocks, as investors digested the weakening dollar and a protectionist push from the U.S. that helped spur declines in Asian equities. Still, not even the soaring Euro was enough to dent risk optimism, and Europe was trading modestly in the green, while S&P futures were about 0.2% higher at 2,847, just shy of all time melt up high. Germany’s DAX underperforms as large trade union threatens walkout over wage negotiations.

In Europe, media and travel companies dragged on the Stoxx Europe 600 Index after the MSCI Asia Pacific posted  losses earlier. Tech names the underperforming sector this morning having taken the impetus from their US counterparts. Additionally, in terms of specific stocks, Aryzta is the worst performing stock after the company announced a profit warning, while Smith and Nephew sit at the top of the FTSE 100 following a broker upgrade at JP  Morgan Chase. Top Stoxx 600 outperformers include: Elior Group +3.4%, Daily Mail & General Trust +2.9%, Smith & Nephew +2.9%, Elekta +2.8%, STMicro +2.4%

Some additional developments out of Europe this morning:

  • German Ifo Business Climate (Jan) 117.6 vs. Exp. 117.1 (Prev. 117.2)
  • German Ifo Expectations (Jan) 108.4 vs. Exp. 109.4 (Prev. 109.5, Rev. 109.4)
  • German Ifo Current Conditions (Jan) 127.7 vs. Exp. 125.4 (Prev. 125.4, Rev. 125.5)
  • Norwegian Cenbank Rate Decision (N/A) 0.50% vs. Exp. 0.50% (Prev. 0.50%)
    • The assessment of the outlook and the balance of risks suggested that the key policy rate would remain at 0.5% in the period ahead. The outlook and the balance of risks for the Norwegian economy do not appear to have changed substantially since the December Report.

Japanese shares fell as the yen traded at the strongest since September; it’s one of a host of major currencies at elevated levels thanks to the dollar slump. The euro edged higher before the European Central Bank’s first policy decision of 2018, and after data showed improving business confidence in Germany.

In Asian geopolitcs, North Korea is said to be calling for rapid improvement in North-South relations and said it will smash all challenges against reunification of the Korean peninsula.

As pointed out last night, the onshore yuan strengthens toward the level before its one-off devaluation in August 2015, as the dollar heads for a three-year low. The onshore yuan rose 0.4% to 6.3335 after an overnight gain of 0.8%, the most since February 2016. At this rate the PBOC will need another Yuantervention soon.

Following Lula’s failure to get approval to run for president, the Brazilian real strengthened the most in eight months and the MSCI Emerging Markets Index climbed for a tenth day, hitting the strongest on record.

Dollar weakness continues to boost commodities: Bloomberg’s index of raw materials is at the highest since October 2015, and gold traded at about the strongest in more than a year. Indeed, it was onward and upwards for commodity prices which have benefitted from the aforementioned USD weakness. Brent crude futures briefly took out the $71.00 handle. Elsewhere, gold rose to levels not seen since mid-2013 and copper also rallied despite the risk averse tone, as the greenback’s woes solely fuelled gains across the complex.

d

Looking ahead, highlights include the ECB rate decision and press conference, US weekly jobs, Japanese CPI

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures up 0.2% to 2,846.50
  • Euro Stoxx 50 up 0.02% to 3648
  • MSCI Asia Pacific down 0.4% to 186.17
  • MSCI Asia Pacific ex Japan down 0.07% to 608.34
  • Nikkei down 1.1% to 23,669.49
  • Topix down 0.9% to 1,884.56
  • Hang Seng Index down 0.9% to 32,654.45
  • Shanghai Composite down 0.3% to 3,548.31
  • Sensex down 0.3% to 36,044.24
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.08% to 6,050.02
  • Kospi up 1% to 2,562.23
  • German 10Y yield unchanged at 0.587%
  • Euro up 0.1% to $1.2422
  • Italian 10Y yield rose 1.9 bps to 1.641%
  • Spanish 10Y yield rose 1.2 bps to 1.37%
  • Brent futures up 0.4% to $70.78/bbl
  • Gold spot up 0.1% to $1,359.70
  • U.S. Dollar Index down 0.2% to 89.06

Top Overnight News

  • “I thought my comment on the dollar was actually quite clear yesterday, I thought it was balanced and consistent with what I said before” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters in Davos
  • Special Counsel Robert Mueller is moving at a far faster pace than previously known and appears to be wrapping up at least one key part of his investigation — whether President Donald Trump obstructed justice, according to current and former U.S. officials
  • The U.K. will be able to negotiate trade deals during the transition period, but those would not be applicable before the end of the transition, according to an EU official
  • German business confidence unexpectedly improved to 117.6 in January, from 117.2 in December, suggesting Europe’s largest economy is off to a strong start
  • IMF’s Lagarde Urges Mnuchin to Clarify Remarks on Weak Dollar
  • Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index recovers after sliding to fresh lows in late Asia session
  • EUR/USD steady after earlier rising as much as 0.4% to 1.2459
  • GBP/USD pares gains after rising to 1.4329 high; U.K. Chancellor Philip Hammond said: “We’re very happy with where the currency is at the moment”
  • EUR/NOK bounces off 100-DMA at 9.58; Norges Bank left its key policy rate unchanged at -0.5% and said the outlook and balance of risks for the Norwegian economy haven’t changed substantially since December
  • NZD/USD climbs, shrugging off an unexpected inflation slowdown which sparked an immediate response of leveraged selling; NZ inflation slowed to 1.6% y/y in 4Q from 1.9% in 3Q; est. 1.9%; on annual basis, consumer prices rise 0.1% q/q; est. 0.4%
  • China’s yuan has rallied so hard against the dollar it’s almost back to levels last seen before the 2015 devaluation

A subdued tone was seen across Asia stock markets following a lacklustre lead from Wall St, where the Nasdaq underperformed on tech weakness and most major indices finished negative despite hitting fresh intraday all-time  highs. ASX 200 (-0.1%) and Nikkei 225 (-1.1%) were lower in which Japanese exporters felt the brunt after USD/JPY briefly slipped to below 109.00, while losses in Australia were stemmed as miners benefited from the recent USD-induced commodity rally. Hang Seng (-0.2%) and Shanghai Comp. (-0.3%) were cautious after the PBoC skipped open market operations and amid trade war concerns due to protectionist messages from US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin and Commerce Secretary Ross at Davos. Finally, 10yr JGBs weakened on spill-over selling from their US counterparts and with demand also dampened by weaker 20yr auction results. PBoC skipped open market operations for today to safeguard bank liquidity stability, while it stated that targeted RRR cut is to offset reverse repo demand.

Top Asia News

  • Malaysia Raises Key Rate as Analysts Bet No More This Year
  • Vietnam’s World-Beating Stock Market Reopens After Two-Day Halt
  • China’s Yuan Nears Pre-Devaluation Levels as Rally Accelerates
  • A Chinese Car Built in Western Europe? Geely Could Be First

A majority of European bourses are trading with minor gains, aside from the DAX (-0.1%) which has faltered amid the rising EUR weighing on exporters. Tech names the underperforming sector this morning having taken the impetus from their US counterparts. Additionally, in terms of stock specific, Aryzta is the worst performing stock after the company announced a profit warning, while Smith and Nephew sit at the top of the FTSE 100 following a broker upgrade at JP Morgan Chase.

Top European News

  • Fingerprint Loses Nearly a Third of Value After Profit Warning
  • German Business Confidence Jumps on Strong Start Into 2018
  • German Parties Weigh Diesel Hardware Fix in Blow to Automakers
  • Polish Refiner Orlen Slumps on Margins Outlook After Record Year

In FX, the selling of the dollar continued for a 4th day as Asian participants were able to react to yesterday’s comments from US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin who stated that USD weakness is good for the US in the short term. Overnight, the USD printed a fresh 3yr low after dipping through 89.00 and moving towards key support situated at 88.25 (50% Fib retrace of rally from 72.65 to 109.89). Subsequently, GBP continued its stellar gains to move above 1.43, while USD/CHF briefly broke through the 94.25/50 support area which has been in place for 2yrs. However, the USD has found some slight reprieve amid talk of suspected FX intervention in Asian currencies (CNH and JPY) and as such has reclaimed 89.00. As many begin to ask the question of potential currency wars, participants will look to Draghi’s post rate decision press conference on whether he will address recent EUR strength. Elsewhere, NZD had been hit by much weaker than expected Q4 NZ inflation data, which has prompted analysts to push back their rate hike expectations to mid-19. NOK relatively unfazed by the latest Norges Decision which saw the bank stand pat on rates and reiterate the findings of the December analysis

In commodities, onward and upwards for commodity prices which have benefitted from the aforementioned USD weakness. Brent crude futures briefly took out the USD 71.00 handle, in terms of levels to the upside, 71.66 (50% Fib retrace of decline from USD 116.1 to USD 27.23 may provide near term resistance. Elsewhere, gold rose to levels not seen since mid-2013 and copper also rallied despite the risk averse tone, as the greenback’s woes solely fuelled gains across the complex.

Looking at the day ahead, the main event is the ECB monetary policy meeting. President Draghi is scheduled to hold a press conference following the meeting outcome. Data releases include February consumer confidence and the January IFO readings in Germany, as well as the December advance goods trade balance, weekly initial jobless claims, December new home sales, December leading index and January Kansas City Fed manufacturing activity index in the US. Before tomorrow morning Japan will print December CPI and publish the latest BoJ meeting minutes. Intel and Caterpillar are scheduled to release earnings with the latter always a good bellwether for the global economy.

US Event Calendar

  • 8:30am: Initial Jobless Claims, est. 235,000, prior 220,000; Continuing Claims, est. 1.93m, prior 1.95m
  • 9:45am: Bloomberg Consumer Comfort, prior 53.8
  • 10am: New Home Sales, est. 675,000, prior 733,000; MoM, est. -7.91%, prior 17.5%
  • 10am: Leading Index, est. 0.5%, prior 0.4%
  • 11am: Kansas City Fed Manf. Activity, est. 14, prior 14

DB’s Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

It was a big day of headlines yesterday from the highest town in Europe as the news rolled down the mountain as destructively as me on skis and created reverberations around the financial world. Today we will need to switch some of the attention 1448 meters lower and 526km away as the ECB meeting in Frankfurt competes for headlines with the show in the snow in Davos.

My impression of Davos events in the past is that they’ve generally not had much market moving newsflow associated with them. However as we’ll see below yesterday was an eventful day and we still have yet to see the main event which is Mr Trump addressing the gathering tomorrow after his arrival today. Before that, today we will hear from PM May on the UK’s relationship with Europe and EC President Juncker on a view from the heart of the EU.

Before we jump into what was said in Davos, in terms of markets the end result was another rough day for the Greenback and a notable sell-off across the bond market that did rally back a bit before the close. On the former, the broad USD index closed last night down -1.03% for the biggest daily decline since June 2017. That is also the 8th down day for the Dollar in the last 10 trading days. On the other side of that, the Euro (+0.89%) closed at the highest level since December 2014 and Sterling (+1.73%) rallied to a new 19 month high after surging through $1.40, $1.41 and $1.42 over the last 24 hours and touching $1.43 this morning in the Asian session which makes the next 5th Avenue Apple store binge ever so slightly more tolerable. In fact every G10 currency rallied at least +0.50% yesterday against the USD while the only EM currency we could find which weakened (out of 23 pairs) was the Argentine Peso. So this was a broad dollar sell-off.

Meanwhile in bonds, 10y Treasuries closed +3.3bps higher at 2.647% while long-dated 30y bonds were also +3.4bps higher at 2.929%. Yields in Europe were a few basis points higher while Gilts sold-off 5.4bps to hit the highest since February 2017. Gold (+1.29%) seemed to be the big beneficiary of the bond move.

It was the comments from US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin which appeared to trigger the latest tumble for the Dollar. Speaking in Davos, Mnuchin said to reporters that “obviously a weaker dollar is good for us as it relates to trade and opportunities”. He also said that the short term value of the Dollar is “not a concern of ours at all”. As a reminder, these comments came a day after President Trump slapped tariffs on imported solar panels and washing  machines. Whilst not a material economic impact, it didn’t go unnoticed that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross also said in Davos that “trade wars are fought every single day” and that “a trade war has been in place for quite a little while”. Ross did however seemingly attempt to play down Mnuchin’s comments by saying that “he wasn’t advocating anything” and that “he was simply saying it’s not the world’s biggest concern to us right now”. The White House press secretary Sanders also softened the blow a bit later as well by praising a “stable” currency.  However it’s certainly been a week of markets fearing a renewed protectionist push. Mr Trump’s speech tomorrow could be a key moment on this theme.

DB’s Alan Ruskin noted the context in which Mnuchin made his remark matters a great deal and looks at least three ways in which context matters. Overall, Ruskin argues that it is going to be hard for the market not to conclude that the US FX policy extends beyond a simple benign neglect, to something a little more active in its encouragement of currency weakness. As a reminder, one Fed trade model cited by Stanley Fischer suggests a 10% USD TWI decline can support real GDP by 1.5% over 1 years, but add only 0.25% – 0.5% to core inflation over a year.

Elsewhere, spooking the bond market seemed to be hedge fund mogul Ray Dalio’s echoing of Bill Gates recent comments, with Dalio saying that the bond market is now in a bear phase and that a “1 percent rise in bond yields will produce the largest bear market in bonds that we have ever seen since 1980 to 1981”. Dalio also said that he expects the Fed to tighten monetary policy faster than what they have forecast according to the dots and that he expects the solid growth environment to persist for another two years.

As discussed at the top, today will see a lot of attention diverted towards the ECB meeting. Post the taper announcement last year it had looked like ECB meetings would be uneventful for much of the start of this year however the December ECB minutes and some of the subsequent news reports have at least added a fair bit of anticipation to today’s meeting. Our European Economists expect Mario Draghi to prepare the ground for changes to forward guidance at today’s press conference by differentiating policy expectations from the policy reaction function within forward guidance. The internal committees may be tasked with studying the options for guidance. Otherwise the team expect the January press conference to contain the same rhetoric as December – rising confidence but no change to the policy stance. EUR appreciation will probably be a talking point, however like in September, our colleagues anticipate tough rhetoric (the currency is “very important” to growth and inflation; volatility needs to be avoided). Given the momentum of the economy, the endogenous  appreciation defense remains valid and the policy exit debate will remain live.

A quick glance at our screens this morning and markets in Asia are broadly lower. The Nikkei (-1.08%), Hang Seng (-0.20%) and China’s CSI300 (-0.36%) are all down while the Kospi is bucking the trend to be up 0.93%. Elsewhere, HK’s H shares index may close lower for the first time in 20 consecutive days as it is down c0.7% as we type. President Trump said his plans to help rebuild the nation’s infrastructure “will probably end up being about $1.7trn” versus the $1trn figure he noted previously. More details of his infrastructure plans are expected in next Wednesday’s State of the Union address.

Those moves in Asia follow a slightly divergent day for equities yesterday with Europe closing down and the US just about holding onto gains. The currency moves certainly appeared to more than play a part. The Stoxx 600 closed -0.50% to finish lower for the first time in a week while the DAX (-1.07%), CAC (-0.72%) and peripheral bourses also fell (0.5%-1%). The FTSE 100 (-1.14%) also felt the weight of the Sterling rally and had its worst day since October. By contrast the S&P 500 closed marginally lower (-0.06%) while the Dow rose 0.16% and Nasdaq fell 0.61%, weighed down by the softer result from Texas Instruments earlier.

In commodities, WTI oil jumped 2.19% to $65.88/bbl after EIA data showed US crude stockpiles fell for the tenth week to the lowest level since February 2015. Brent oil also rose to $70.75/bbl – the highest since June 2015. Elsewhere, silver was up 2.95% and other base metals were all higher, partly benefiting from the weaker dollar (Copper +2.03%; Zinc +0.67%; Aluminium +0.65%).

Away from markets and back to Davos, Germany’s Merkel warned against “right-wing populism” as it is “a poison that appears whenever you have unresolved problems”. She noted Germany has its own difficulties, such as “national polarization that we haven’t witnessed for decades” due to the financial crisis and migration. On globalisation, she said we need to be “patient and look for multilateral solutions rather than slip into the easier solution of pursing national interests, as unilateral solutions …simply promote isolation and protectionism”. Elsewhere, she stood firm on Brexit, noting “….the issue of access to the internal market is linked to freedom of movement…..we can’t make any compromises there”.

Staying with trade, Canada’s Chief negotiator Verheul told Reuters he had “a constructive conversion” with his US counterpart re the NAFTA deal and will unveil ideas on how to meet a US demand for higher North American auto content soon. In our US economists note, they detail the political state-of-play for the NAFTA talks and provide an assessment of the potential impact on the US, Canadian, and Mexican economies in the unlikely event that a NAFTA breakup occurs.

In the UK, Brexit Secretary Davis has signalled a desire for some kind of status quo post Brexit which may have helped Sterling yesterday. He noted Britain will stay close to EU’s regulatory regime after it leaves the EU bloc and  sees his task as “…maintaining the maximum possible access to the European market..” and creating “the freedom” to allow the government to diverge later on if it choose to do so.

Before we take a look at today’s calendar, we wrap up with other data releases from yesterday. In the US, the December existing home sales fell 3.6% mom to 5.57m (vs. 5.70m expected), partly affected by lower housing inventory. The November FHFA house price index was also softer than expected at 0.4% mom (vs. 0.5%). Elsewhere, the January composite PMI was lower than last month’s reading at 53.8 (vs. 54.1), with a stronger manufacturing PMI (55.5 vs. 55 expected) offset by a lower than expected services PMI (53.3 vs. 54.3).

The Eurozone’s January composite PMI was above market at 58.6 (vs. 57.9) and broadly consistent with a quarterly GDP growth of c1% in the Euro area. The manufacturing PMI fell from last month’s 21 year high to 59.6 (vs. 60.3 expected) but the services PMI was stronger than expected at 57.6 (vs. 56.4). Across the countries, there seemed to be a theme of weaker manufacturing PMI offset by stronger services PMI. In Germany, the composite PMI was above expectations and near the highest in c7 years at 58.8 (vs. 58.5 expected), with manufacturing PMI retreating from last month’s record high to 61.2 (vs. 63 expected) while the services PMI beat (57 vs. 55.5). In France, the composite PMI was also above market (59.7 vs. 59.2) with the weakness in manufacturing PMI offset by a stronger services PMI (57 vs. 55 expected).

In the UK, labour market conditions remain strong with the November unemployment rate remaining at a 43 year low and steady at 4.3%, while the labour force employment change grew 102k (vs. -12k expected). Elsewhere, the average weekly earnings ex-bonus grew slightly more than expected at 2.4% yoy (vs. 2.3%) in the three months through November.

Looking at the day ahead, the main event is the ECB monetary policy meeting. President Draghi is scheduled to hold a press conference following the meeting outcome. Data releases include February consumer confidence and the January IFO readings in Germany, as well as the December advance goods trade balance, weekly initial jobless claims, December new home sales, December leading index and January Kansas City Fed manufacturing activity index in the US. Before tomorrow morning Japan will print December CPI and publish the latest BoJ meeting minutes. Intel and Caterpillar are scheduled to release earnings with the latter always a good bellwether for the global economy

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)Late TUESDAY night/WEDNESDAY morning: Shanghai closed DOWN 11.16 points or 0.31% /Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 304.24 pts or 0.92% / The Nikkei closed DOWN 271,29 POINTS OR 1.13%/Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED DOWN 0.07%/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed  WELL UP at 6.3280/Oil UP to 66.10 dollars per barrel for WTI and 71.00 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED ALL GREED .   ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AGAINST THE DOLLAR AT 6.3280. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AGAINST  THE ONSHORE YUAN AT 6.3230//ONSHORE YUAN MUCH STRONGER AGAINST THE DOLLAR/OFF SHORE MUCH STRONGER TO THE DOLLAR/. THE DOLLAR (INDEX) IS  MUCH WEAKER AGAINST ALL MAJOR CURRENCIES. CHINA IS SEMI  HAPPY TODAY.(STRONG CURRENCY BUT WEAKER MARKETS )

3 a NORTH KOREA/USA

/SOUTH KOREA

Wow!! this is a surprise.  The South Korean economy unexpectedly contracts with a huge crash in exports..the most in 33 years.  The South Korean economy is considered a canary for the global economy

(courtesy zerohedge)

South Korea’s Economy Unexpectedly Contracts As Exports Crash Most In 33 Years

For only the 4th time since 1999 (and for the first time since Lehman), South Korea’s economy unexpectedly shrank in Q4 (contracting 0.4% QoQ against expectations of 0.1% expansion), busting the global-synchronized-growth narrative.

Only two analysts forecast the possibility of a contraction…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_SK1_0.jpg

Government spending rose 0.5% QoQ, and while private consumption rose 1.09% QoQ, construction investment tumbled 3.8% QoQ

Exports were the biggest driver – plunging 5.4% QoQ – the biggest drop since 1985…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_SK4.jpg

As Goldman notes, Korea’s 2017 Q4 GDP contracted 0.2% quarter on quarter (seasonally adjusted), slowing sharply from 1.5% in Q3 and falling for the first time in nine years. The figure was well below consensus and as well as our expectations. Main points:

1. Korea’s 2017 Q4 GDP contracted 0.2% quarter on quarter (seasonally adjusted), slowing sharply from a high base of 1.5% in Q3 and recording the first sequential decline in nine years. The figure was well below expectations. In year-on-year terms, growth was lowered to 3.0% from 3.8% in Q3.

2. Domestic demand’s total contribution to sequential GDP growth moderated to 0.6pp, from 0.8pp in the previous quarter. By expenditure, final consumption (including both private and government) continued solid growth of 0.9% qoq sa, helped by a re-acceleration in private consumption to 1.0%. Fixed investment declined 2.0% qoq sa, the first decline in three years. Facilities investment fell 0.6% qoq sa, and the contraction was more pronounced in construction activities (-3.8% qoq sa). The drag from fixed capital formation offset the relative strength in final consumption. Inventories accumulation turned positive again, adding 0.6pp to headline growth.

3. Net exports’ contribution to sequential growth fell back to -0.8pp. Exports recorded a sequential contraction of -5.4% qoq sa, but slowing from a sharp growth of 6.1% in Q3. Imports also declined 4.1% due mostly to lower machinery imports according to the Bank of Korea press release.

4. By industry, manufacturing contracted 2.0% qoq sa, the weakest print since Q1 2009. While the detailed breakdown by sectors is not yet available, the BOK press release highlights that the weakness was concentrated in transport equipment production including autos. In contrast, services continued positive growth at 0.4%, although moderating from 1.1% in the previous quarter.

5. For the full year of 2017, Korea’s real GDP grew 3.1%, up from 2.8% growth during the previous two years (2015-2016). The weaker-than-expected Q4 GDP figure, however, mechanically lowers our 2018 growth estimate to 2.8%, somewhat below the central bank’s latest forecast of 3.0%. In our view, distortions from unusually long holidays in Q4 2017 may have accentuated the sequential volatility, but the underlying momentum in export volumes adjusted for the distortions remains solid. Latest 20 day exports figure for January supports our view, with daily ex-ships exports accelerating from December to 14.5% yoy.

So Q4 2017 saw the worst economic environment since Q4 2008…

But stocks were soaring…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_SK2.jpg

And PMIs said “everything was awesome”…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_SK3.jpg

Perhaps most worrisome is that South Korea is often termed ‘the canary in the world trade coalmine’ and this downside surprise will do nothing to confirm the ‘globally synchronized growth’ narrative.

With The Won soaring to four-year highs…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_SK5.jpg

How long before South Korea rejoins the currency wars?

END

It sure looks like a thawing of the relations between the two Koreas. Now the North is calling on all Koreans to push for unification

(courtesy zerohedge)

North Korea Calls On Koreans To Push For Unification

A thaw in North-South relations that began early this year as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in has accelerated into a full-on reversal. To wit, North Korea on Thursday issued a rare message for “all Koreans at home and abroad,” saying they should make a “breakthrough” for unificationwithout the help of other countries, its state media said.

Reuters reports the North Korean press are also saying, “all Koreans” should “promote contact, travel, cooperation between North and South Korea” while adding Pyongyang will “smash” all challenges against reunification of the Korean peninsula.”

Relations between the two countries warmed when the South agreed to suspend the military exercises that the North has described as a preamble to war earlier this year, and the neighboring countries – which have technically been at war since the 1950s – agreed to field a combined women’s field hockey team during the upcoming Winter Games in PyeongChang.

A liberal who campaigned on forging closer ties with the North, Jae-in has butted heads with President Trump and the US military, which remain wary of the North. US military leaders worry that Kim is deviously trying to create a wedge between the US and its main regional ally in its struggle to contain the North’s nuclear program.

The announcement, which was issued after a joint meeting of government and political parties, also called for Koreans to “defuse military tensions” and create “a peaceful atmosphere” on the peninsula.

The North’s official news agency explained that military tensions on the peninsula were a “fundamental obstacle” to improving inter-Korean relations. Now that they have ceased, an amicable relationship is developing for the first time since the end of the Cold War.

North

North Korea did not provide details about the purpose for the meeting, saying only that it was aimed to support leader Kim Jong Un’s remarks regarding unification from his New Year’s address. It said this year is meaningful for both North and South Korea as it is the 70th anniversary of the founding of North Korea while South Korea will be hosting the Winter Olympics next month.

Of course, all this peace talk hasn’t stopped the North from continuing to advance their nuclear program, as well as the country’s testing of ballistic missiles. CIA Director Mike Pompeo warned earlier this week that the North is only “a handful of months” away from being able to launch a nuclear strike on the Continental US with a high degree of accuracy.

 

3 b JAPAN AFFAIRS

c) REPORT ON CHINA

The dollar continues on its nosedive after China threatens the USA with appropriate measures after the USA initiated tariffs on washing machines and on solar panels.

(courtesy zerohedge)

Dollar Resumes Nosedive As China Threatens US With “Appropriate Measures” Over Trade

The war of words (China) and deeds (US) is hotting up once again tonight, sending the Dollar Index careening back to new cycle lows

Following Wilbur Ross’ “China’s direct threat” comments today in Davos, China’s MOFCOM has responded with the most aggressive rhetoric yet..

  • CHINA SAYS USTR REPORT OVERLOOKS FACT, SHOWS UNILATERALISM
  • CHINA “STRONGLY OPPOSES” USTR REPORT: COMMERCE MINISTRY
  • CHINA DOESN’T WANT ESCALATION OF TRADE SPATS WITH U.S.: MOFCOM
  • CHINA ALWAYS OPEN TO DIALOGUE, COOPERATION WITH U.S.: MOFCOM
  • CHINA TO TAKE APPROPRIATE MEASURES AGAINST UNILATERAL MOVES
  • MOFCOM SAYS CHINA TRADE FRICTIONS OUTLOOK STILL SEVERE IN 2018
  • CHINA HOPES TO HANDLE FRICTIONS WITH US IN PROPER MANNER:MOFCOM

Which has sparked another leg down in the relentless dollar dump…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_dollar.jpg

The collapse in the dollar has sent the Yuan back up near its pre-2015-devaluation levels…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_dollar1.jpg

The rapid appreciation against the dollar has fueled speculation policy makers will take additional steps to slow the the pace of gains, although its relatively slower ascent against a basket of peers may make the strength less of an issue than last time round.

“The rapid strengthening has triggered a panic in the market, aggravating the sentiment to sell the dollar,” said Tommy Xie, an economist at Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. in Singapore. “Apart from the weakening dollar, high onshore funding rates and strong demand for cross-border financing will both take foreign currencies back to China.”

Perhaps more notable is the fact that the world’s most overheated market has at last succumbed to gravity.

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_dollar2.jpg

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index slumped as much as 2.1 percent on Thursday, heading for its first down day since Dec. 27, with financial shares leading losses. The gauge, which tracks Chinese stocks listed in Hong Kong, is still up 14 percent for the year and beating virtually all other equity benchmarks in the world.

end

4. EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

The ECB keeps rates unchanged and reaffirms its taper.  But in a surprise statement they state that they may increase their QE in size and also in duration…and may continue after September if inflation does not meet their needs.

(courtesy zerohedge)

Sweden Hell: Armed Migrant Teens Roaming With Kalashnikovs; Military May Be Deployed

As we reported last week, Sweden may or may not be preparing for civil conflict – as Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said that the government would do whatever it takes – including deploying the military – to end the wave of gang violence coming primarily from young migrants in the country’s “no-go” zones.

It’s not my first action to put in a military, but I’m prepared to do what it takes to ensure that the seriously organized crime goes away,” Lofven said after the party leadership discussion in parliament, adding “it is also obvious that there are social problems… …We see criminals with total lack of respect for human life, it’s a terrible development I’m determined to turn around.”Lofven’s comments come on the heels of a spate of gang related murders, including that of a 21-year-old man in Malmö last weekend, shot in the head as he stepped out of a taxi near a grocery store.The same weekend, a 16 year old boy found shot in Rosengård district of Malmö died in the hospital next to a bus stop. Two people were taken in for questioning by the police.
Rosengård district of Malmö. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TTAnd on January 3rd a 22-year-old man was shot in the Fosie district of Malmö, the day after an 18-year-old woman was taken to the hospital with gunshot wounds ten minutes away in Rosengård.

In Malmö, where a fifth of the 340,000 inhabitants are under 18, children as young as 14 roam the streets with Kalashnikov assault rifles and bulletproof vests. The average age of gang members is 22, the vast majority of them hailing from migrant families. –thetimes.co.uk

The increase in crime has been so overwhelming that Swedish authorities admit they are unable to investigate rape cases right now because of the enormous backlog of gang crime under investigation. “We are forced to choose between two evils,” said police.

Prime Minister Lofven’s strong language also follows an attack on the Rosengård police station last Wednesday after an explosive device was lobbed at the electric-fenced building – the latest in ongoing violence against Swedish peacekeepers.


Rosengard police station was attacked (thetimes.co.uk)

Last August, Stockholm police officer Ted Eriksson, 34, was stabbed in the neck by an Afghan asylum seeker who claimed to be 17 but was suspected of being in his late twenties. The man said he wanted to kill a policeman, however officer Eriksson fortunately suffered minor injuries.


Ted Eriksson (LISA MATTISSON/TT NEWS AGENCY)

In April, 2017, three Swedish female police officers were beaten as they attempted to apprehend a violent refugee.

In 2013, Swedish police were targeted several times during the Stockholm riots – which saw a police station burned down, several officers injured, and rocks thrown at firefighters and other first responders.

And in 2016, migrants even attacked the crew of ’60 Minutes’ while they were filming a segment on… migrants.

Meanwhile, increasingly powerful weapons have been turning up in Swedish neighborhoods. In 2015, anti-tank missiles were found in a basement of a 36-year-old man suspected of smuggling guns from his brothers in Bosnia into the Swedish no-go zone of Örebro – considered an “Especially vulnerable area” according to a 2017 police report.

The man and five others – described by Bosnian media as linked to the Muslim Brotherhood, were arrested in a series of seven raids. Bosnian Authorities, however, told SVT News that the smugglers are not members of any extremist organizations and have no known links to terrorist activities.

After an investigation following seven raids in mid-2016, Swedish authorities dropped the smuggling charges and prosecuted the Örebro man for possession. He is currently in prison for drug offenses during his ongoing arms-related prosecution.

Police also found a trove of firearms, 16 hand grenades, the four anti-tank missiles pictured above and various other armaments.

Anti-tank missiles found inside a persons basement in Swedish city Örebro.

Seems like handgrenades is not enough for them anymore.

These people are literally storing heavy duty military weaponry in their homes in Sweden.

Are they preparing for war?https://www.svt.se/nyheter/lokalt/orebro/forvarade-pansargevar-i-kallaren-atalas 

Speaking of explosive devices, grenade attacks in Sweden have been on the rise since 2012, although 2017 was a considerably better year, at 10 attacks vs. 34 in 2016.

That year, an 8 year old boy sleeping in the Gothenburg, Sweden living room of relatives was killed by a grenade thrown into the room. “At least five children and several adults were in the flat when the grenade was hurled inside,” according to the BBCwho added that the boy died in his mother’s arms.

And in February, 2017 a man was injured outside of a residence after a grenade was thrown:

Explosion, suspected grenade attack in Malmo. One injured: https://www.sydsvenskan.se/2017-02-27/explosion-pa-lindangen-polis-larmad-till-platsen 

Handgranat kastades utanför radhus – en person skadad

Misstänkt mordförsök i radhusområde på Lindängen.

sydsvenskan.se

It seems, perhaps, that Sweden’s ultra-liberal, open-border, self-described feminist government is realizing they may have screwed up by allowing unchecked migration from Islamic countries associated with terrorism, violence, and perhaps containing people with an axe to grind against the West. As The Times notes:

Sweden has pursued a liberal immigration policy for more than a generation; its government speaks of being a “humanitarian superpower” for having taken in a large number of asylum seekers. After the migrant crisis of 2015, when more than 160,000 people sought asylum, the policy was abruptly changed. Yet there is little debate or reliable data about the integration of the 12% of the population that derive from non-western countries.

For a long time the Swedish establishment played down the decay of immigrant-dominated suburbs, but it can no longer ignore the explosion of violence.

It should also be noted that 70% of migrants coming into Europe as of 2015 were men of fighting age according to a Pew Research Center study.

Even Swedish Democratic party leader Jimmie Akesson “declared war” against organized crime and suggested that Sweden should deploy the military to no-go zones to counter the out of control violence.

People are shot to death in pizza restaurants, people are killed by hand grenades they find on the street,” Akesson said in parliament on Wednesday.

“This is the new Sweden; the new, exciting dynamic, multicultural paradise that so many here in this assembly … have fought to create for so many years,” he said sarcastically.

And now the Swedish government is distributing survivalism pamphlets (for war with Russia, of course) and considering deploying the military to deal with idealistic gun-toting migrant youth gangs from brutally war-torn countries.

Who could have possibly seen this coming?

Feb, 2017 – Sweden’s Deputy Prime Minister, Feminist Isabella Lövin mocks U.S. President Trump with all-female colleagues – one week before donning hijabs to meet with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei 

 END
Bellwether stock Caterpillar, a good indicator of global growth soars to all time highs after beating expectations and boosting guidance.  This goes against South Korea’s export collapse, announced this morning
(courtesy zerohedge)

Caterpillar Soars To All Time High After Beating Expectations, Boosting Guidance

When discussing  yesterday’s release of Caterpillar retail sales, which soared the most in 6 years, we said if “CAT’s  dealer sales statistics, traditionally released just one day before the company’s earnings report, are an indication of what to expect from the heavy industrial equipment maker, then CAT’s Q4 results will be a blow out.”

Well, that’s precisely what happened, because this morning the heavy industrial manufacturer reported Q4 EPS of $2.16, smashing expectations of $1.79 on revenue of $12.90BN, nearly a billion above the $11.90BN expected.

More importantly, the Deerfield, Illinois company projected growth in its construction and mining-equipment businesses, forecasting increased sales to China and expansion in North America, even without a U.S. infrastructure bill, according to a statement Thursday. As a result, the midpoint of its 2018 forecast for earnings of $8.25 to $9.25 a share was above the $8.63 consensus estimate.

As Bloomberg  notes, estimates for Caterpillar earnings had risen 16 percent the past three months, the most in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, amid signs of improving demand across the globe.

Caterpillar, which in December capped the biggest annual gain in its shares since 2003, raised its 2017 revenue projections three times last year as surging Chinese demand and an improving U.S. economy lifted sales of mining and construction equipment.

“We have for the first time a relatively coordinated growth in global economies and capital equipment as well,” Larry De Maria, an analyst at William Blair & Co., said in an interview before the earnings were released. “With that backdrop and accelerated growth continuing, the outlook is pretty bullish.”

It is indeed, and as a result this morning CAT shares were over 4% higher…

… after climing 26% in Q4, and 70% in 2017. The shares were the second-best performer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average last quarter. Meanwhile, the long-term CAT chart looks nothing short of parabolic.

end

7. OIL ISSUES

8. EMERGING MARKET

 end

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

Euro/USA 1.2413 UP .0021/ REACTING TO MERKEL’S FAILED COALITION/ SPAIN VS CATALONIA/REACTING TO +GERMAN ELECTION WHERE ALT RIGHT PARTY ENTERS THE BUNDESTAG/ huge Deutsche bank problems + USA election:/TRUMP HEALTH CARE DEFEAT//ITALIAN REFERENDUM DEFEAT/AND NOW ECB TAPERING BOND PURCHASES/JAPAN TAPERING BOND PURCHASES /USA FALLING INTEREST RATES AGAIN/HOUSTON FLOODING/EUROPE BOURSES ALL GREEN 

USA/JAPAN YEN 108.98 DOWN  0.594 (Abe’s new negative interest rate (NIRP), a total DISASTER/SIGNALS U TURN WITH INCREASED NEGATIVITY IN NIRP/JAPAN OUT OF WEAPONS TO FIGHT ECONOMIC DISASTER/

GBP/USA 1.4268 UP .0048 (Brexit March 29/ 2017/ARTICLE 50 SIGNED

THERESA MAY FORMS A NEW GOVERNMENT/STARTS BREXIT TALKS/MAY IN TROUBLE WITH HER OWN PARTY/

USA/CAN 1.2320 DOWN .0030 (CANADA WORRIED ABOUT TRADE WITH THE USA WITH TRUMP ELECTION/ITALIAN EXIT AND GREXIT FROM EU/(TRUMP INITIATES LUMBER TARIFFS ON CANADA)

Early THIS THURSDAY morning in Europe, the Euro ROSE by 21 basis points, trading now ABOVE the important 1.08 level RISING to 1.2334; / Last night the Shanghai composite CLOSED DOWN 11.16 POINTS OR 0.31% / Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 304.24 POINTS OR 0.92% /AUSTRALIA CLOSED DOWN 0.07% / EUROPEAN BOURSES ALL GREEN  

The NIKKEI: this THURSDAY morning CLOSED DOWN 271,29 POINTS OR 1.13%

Trading from Europe and Asia:
1. Europe stocks OPENED GREEN

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / : Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 304.24 POINTS OR 0.92% / SHANGHAI CLOSED DOWN 11.16 POINTS OR 1.13% /

Australia BOURSE CLOSED DOWN 0.07% /

Nikkei (Japan)CLOSED DOWN 271.29 POINTS OR 1.13%

INDIA’S SENSEX IN THE RED

Gold very early morning trading: 1359.25

silver:$17.53

Early THURSDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield: 2.630% !!! DOWN 2 IN POINTS from WEDNESDAY night in basis points and it is trading WELL ABOVE resistance at 2.27-2.32%. (POLICY FED ERROR)/ALSO GETTING DANGEROUSLY CLOSE TO 2.70%

The 30 yr bond yield 2.9130 DOWN 2 IN BASIS POINTS from WEDNESDAY night. (POLICY FED ERROR)

USA dollar index early THURSDAY morning: 89.14 DOWN 6  CENT(S) from YESTERDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers THURSDAY MORNING

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And now your closing THURSDAY NUMBERS \1 PM

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 1.905% UP 2  in basis point(s) yield from WEDNESDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: +.085% UP 1/10   in basis points yield from WEDNESDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.410% UP 6  IN basis point yield from WEDNESDAY/

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.963 UP 6  POINTS in basis point yield from WEDNESDAY/

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 55 points HIGHER than Spain.

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: +.612%  UP 5 IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY

END

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IMPORTANT CURRENCY CLOSES FOR THURSDAY

Closing currency crosses for THURSDAY night/USA DOLLAR INDEX/USA 10 YR BOND YIELD/1:00 PM

Euro/USA 1.2412 UP.0019 (Euro UP 19 Basis points/ represents to DRAGHI A COMPLETE POLICY FAILURE/

USA/Japan: 109.34 UP 0.019 Yen DOWN 2 basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.4161 DOWN .0059( POUND DOWN 59 BASIS POINTS)

USA/Canada 1.2364 UP  .0008 Canadian dollar DOWN 8 Basis points AS OIL ROSE TO $65.72

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This afternoon, the Euro was UP 819 to trade at 1.2412

The Yen FELL to 109.34 for a LOSS of 2 Basis points as NIRP is STILL a big failure for the Japanese central bank/HELICOPTER MONEY IS NOW DELAYED/BANK OF JAPAN NOW WORRIED AS AS THEY ARE RUNNING OUT OF BONDS TO BUY AS BOND YIELDS RISE

The POUND FELL BY 59 basis points, trading at 1.4161/

The Canadian dollar FELL by 8 basis points to 1.2364/ WITH WTI OIL RISING TO : $65.72

The USA/Yuan closed AT 6.326
the 10 yr Japanese bond yield closed at +.085% UP 1/10  BASIS POINTS / yield/
Your closing 10 yr USA bond yield DOWN 3 IN basis points from WEDNESDAY at 2.624% //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic USA 30 yr bond yield: 2.886  DOWN 6  in basis points on the day /

Your closing USA dollar index, 89.12 DOWN 8 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 THURSDAY: 1:00 PM EST

London: CLOSED DOWN 27,59 POINTS OR 0.36%
German Dax :CLOSED DOWN 116.38 POINTS OR 0.87%
Paris Cac CLOSED DOWN 13.95 POINTS OR 0.25%
Spain IBEX CLOSED UP 32.30 POINTS OR 0.31%

Italian MIB: CLOSED UP 97.19 POINTS OR 0.41%

The Dow closed UP 140.67 POINTS OR 0.54%

NASDAQ WAS DOWN 3.89 Points OR 0.08% 4.00 PM EST

WTI Oil price; 65.72 1:00 pm;

Brent Oil: 70.28 1:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN ROUBLE CROSS: 55.81 DOWN 8/100 ROUBLES/DOLLAR (ROUBLE HIGHER BY 8 BASIS PTS)

TODAY THE GERMAN YIELD RISES TO +.612% FOR THE 10 YR BOND 1.00 PM EST EST

END

This ends the stock indices, oil price, currency crosses and interest rate closes for today 4:30 PM

Closing Price for Oil, 4:30 pm/and 10 year USA interest rate:

WTI CRUDE OIL PRICE 4:30 PM:$65.25

BRENT: $70.08

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: 2.620%   THE RAPID ASSENT IN YIELD IS VERY DANGEROUS/ANYTHING OVER 2.70% AND THE ENTIRE DERIVATIVES BLOW UP

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 2.886%

EURO/USA DOLLAR CROSS: 1.2398 UP.0006  OR 6 BASIS POINTS

USA/JAPANESE YEN:109.43 up 0.114/ YEN UP 12 BASIS POINTS

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 89.39 up 18 cent(s)/

The British pound at 5 pm: Great Britain Pound/USA: 1.4144 : down 75 POINTS FROM LAST NIGHT

Canadian dollar: 1.2370 down 20 BASIS pts

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: +0.612%

END

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

TRADING IN GRAPH FORM FOR THE DAY

Trump Rescues Dollar From Mnuchin-Massacre, Yield Curve Crashes

Despite Mnuchin’s and Trump’s best efforts, dollar-owners ended the day like this…

Before we start on the markets shenanigans, two quick things:

First – South Korea’s economy reported a contraction last night, its first since the financial crisis – as exports crashed…

And Second – US economic data has been notably disappointing this year (the worst start to a year since 2015)…

Not pretty:

  • Retail Sales Miss
  • Empire Fed Miss
  • Housing Starts Miss
  • Philly Fed Miss
  • UMich Confidence Miss
  • Richmond Fed Miss
  • Markit US PMI Miss
  • Existing Home Sales Miss
  • New Home Sales Miss

But then again, it’s a global-synchronized-recovery, right? Just ask stocks… (NOTE the weakness late in the day as the dollar spiked…)

Dow’s gains were dominated by Boeing (+56pts), 3M (+27pts), and Goldman (+18bpts)

We wonder whether Trump will want to jawbone the dollar again as it sinks his precious stock market?

On the week though the divergence between Dow’s surge and Trannies’ slump is dramatic…

Trannies hit by the biggest 2-day drop in Airline stocks since Brexit (-9.6%!)

This is the biggest two-day divergence between DOW/TRAN since September 2011.

VIX and the S&P 500 are both up again this week – the third week in a row – if this continues tomorrow, it will be the first time since Feb 2013 (the only other times in the last 30 years was May 2007, Jan 2004, Aug 1993, and Apr 1991)

As BofA recently noted, such an occurrence is highly unusual as vol and spot returns have a strong inverse relationship. The recent move is even more notable when comparing it to other low vol periods. When limiting exclusively to days when the VIX was below 16 at the beginning of the 10 day window, 18-Jan’s 3.1% 10d SPX spot return stands out as exceedingly high relative to its 3pt uptick in vol. In fact, when the VIX was below 16 and increased at least 3pts over the prior 10 days, the S&P had a 10d return that was positive only eleven other times since 2001, and only one day had a better 10d return than what we saw on 18-Jan-17 (4.6% on 9-Jan-1992).

Perhaps unsurprisingly, FX Vol has spiked (to 4-month highs) and rate volatility is also on the rise…

FANG Stocks rolled over in the afternoon as Soros slammed Facebook and Google.. and AAPL kept falling…

It’s not just vol that is diverging from stocks, HY bonds have completely decoupled…

While stocks were soaring, early weakness in bonds gave way to aggressive buying of duration as the long-end dramatically outperformed (helped by a very strong 7Y auction)…

10Y yield are back below the Gundlach line of doom…

All of which sparked a dramatic flattening of the 2s30s curve… Today’s 4.5bps drop is the biggest flattening day so far in 2018…

Today’s 2s30s curve close is the flattest since Oct 2007

Steve Mnuchin did his best to try and walk-back some of his comments from yesterday… but really didn’t and the dollar continued its freefall…until President Trump rescued it… But sadly the dollar did not hold onto those gains…

The Dollar Index dropped below 89 intraday.

Notably, options market traders expect this to continue, driven mostly by JPY strength…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180125_eod4.jpg

As Bloomberg notes, traders are charging more for protection against the dollar weakening versus Japan’s currency over the next month than they are for similar hedging on the pound or euro. The bias in favor of the yen widened since earlier this week when Japan’s central bank signaled it no longer sees inflation expectations weakening.

Commodities were all lower on the day as Trump sparked the dollar spike… silver and gold bounced back as the dollar faded…

Finally, despite George Soros disparaging remarks, cryptocurrencies manage to rebound to close green…

end

Trading/early this morning

the dollar is crashing again

(courtesy zerohedge)

The Dollar Is Crashing Again…

Following US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin’s wishy-washy walk-back this morningECB president Draghi has failed to deliver a dovish enough press conference to reverse the trend and the dollar index is crashing to new cycle lows once again…

The dollar continues to press its weakest levels since Dec 2014…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180125_usd.jpg

This is the 7th weekly drop in a row, and the worst week for the dollar since March 2015.

As a reminder, the Yuan is getting very close to its pre-devaluation levels…suggesting to some that an intervention is coming.

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180125_usd1.jpg

end

And so is bond prices falling as yields spike higher: to 2.67% and that send stocks plunging. The 10 yr yield is the benchmark cost for money.

(courtesy zerohedge)

Treasury Yield Spike Sparks Plunge In Stocks

US equities were trading higher  – in their ubiquitous manner – when suddenly the 10Y Yield spiked to 2.67% seemingly sparking a sudden round of panic-selling in stocks, pushing all the major indices into the red for the day.

The driver appeared to be the yield spike…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180125_10Y.jpg

And then as stocks were slammed, so bonds rallied, pushing yields back down…

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180125_10Y2.jpg

Have we reached the equity market’s Maginot Line with regard to bonds?

end

The dollar this morning continues on its downward trajectory buoyed by additional comments by Mnuchin. He reaffirmed his comments that he wants a lower USA dollar to help the USA.  He further complicated the rhetoric by stating that Trump wants a “relaxed” dollar

(courtesy zerohedge)

Mnuchin Backs Weak-Currency Comments After Lagarde Demands Clarification

Following speculation that Steven Mnuchin’s market-moving Wednesday comments were misconstrued, with none other than Wilbur Ross saying that the Treasury Secretary did not suggest the US was now pursuing a weak-dollar policy, Mnuchin was back on the wires again this morning in a panel appearance at Davos, where he mostly repeated his previous comment, stating that “a weaker dollar is good for us as it relates to trade and opportunities,” and in terms of trade imbalances, which of course is factually true although it was still unclear if equates with new US policy. For the answer, we may need Trump who just landed at Davos, to weigh on that.

Addressing whether the US has a dollar target he said, “My comments have been that in the short term, where the dollar is not a concern of mine, that it will fluctuate. In the short term there’s obviously benefits and issues of a lower dollar.”

After that confusion “explanation”, Mnuchin was confused how there could be any confusion over his remarks: “I thought my comment on the dollar was actually quite clear yesterday, I thought it was balanced and consistent with what I said before” he told reporters in Davos. He further said that “It’s a very very liquid market and we believe in free currencies. There’s both advantages and disadvantages on where the dollar is in the short term.

Addressing the elephant in the room, he said that “we want free and fair and reciprocal trade. So I think it’s very clear. We’re not looking to get into trade wars. On the other hand we are looking to defend America’s interests.”

Mnuchin’s clarification came shortly after IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde spoke to Bloomberg at Davos and said USD value is determined by the market, while suggesting that Mnuchin should explain his comments in which he appeared to back a weak dollar, adding that U.S. tax cuts will probably cause the world’s reserve currency to rally.

“I really hope that Secretary Mnuchin has a chance to clarify exactly what he said,” Lagarde said. “The dollar is of all currencies a floating currency and one where value is determined by markets and geared by the fundamentals of U.S. policy.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/api/embed/iframe?id=d3cec383-7433-4c5c-8e79-58b1e7954e90

She also said that trade is a very significant engine of growth and protectionist measures don’t help trade or growth.

* * *

And then, just to make things even more confusing, Mnuchin said in another panel discussion that he thinks that “Trump shares a relaxed view on the dollar” suggesting that a weaker dollar is in fact a matter of US policy.

Whether Mnuchin’s “clarification” was meant to boost the dollar or to double down on his “weak dollar” policy was unclear, but while the Bloomberg dollar index staged a feeble rally around the time of Mnuchin’s comments it has resumed its slide, and continued to trade at three year lows.

end

what a joke!!  the dollar surges again after Trump says Mnuchin was misinterpreted..twice.

keystone cops at their finest

(courtesy zerohedge)

Dollar Surges After Trump Says “Mnuchin Was Misinterpreted, Dollar Will Get Stronger”

After Stephen Mnuchin failed to arrest the dollar’s freefall this morning, it appears to have been left to President Trump to ‘fix’ it. In a brief clip from a longer CNBC interview, Trump explained “ultimately he wants to see a strong dollar” and the dollar spiked…

Trump said “Mnuchin’s comment was taken out of context” and added that “our country is becoming so economically strong again and strong in other ways, too… and the dollar will get stronger and stronger and ultimately I want to see a strong dollar

https://player.cnbc.com/p/gZWlPC/cnbc_global?playertype=synd&byGuid=3000688607&size=530_298

And the reaction was instant buying of the dollar…

We do note that actually this is exactly what Mnuchin said this morning… that in the long-run we want a strong dollar… and offers no content for the short-term plunge. For now the Trump spike is not erasing the day’s losses.

New home sales crash in December and the likely candidate is the record high prices for them.  New home sales plunged 9.3% lower/month over month

(courtesy zerohedge)

New Home Sales Crash In December As Prices Reach Record High

Following yesterday’s disastrous drop in existing home sales (due to record low supply), new home sales plunged 9.3% MoM after November saw its biggest surge since Jan 1992, revised dramatically lower.

The November 17.5% spike was revised dramatically down to 15.0% spike – the highest since 1993 but December’s 9.3% plunge was already worse than the expected 7.9% giveback…

Biggest MoM drop since Aug 2016.

In fact the downward revisions are huge…  October from 624K to 599K; November from 733K to 689K

As good as it gets?

While the blame is immediately laid on weather, the regional drops show that is simply not correct:

Purchases fell in all four U.S. regions, led by a 10 percent drop in the Midwest and a 9.8 percent slide in the South.

Median Home Prices reached a new record high…at $335,400

As Bloomberg notes, new-home sales, tabulated when contracts get signed, account for about 10 percent of the market. They’re considered a timelier barometer than purchases of previously owned homes, which are calculated when contracts close and are reported by the National Association of Realtors.

But the ongoing lack of supply remains the most notable aspect in the US housing ‘recovery’.

Alhambra’s Jeffrey Snider notes critically that it’s what’s going on underneath the headline that really matters (as always). The reluctance of Americans to sell their houses has become such a contradiction to the attempt to paint the housing market, and therefore the overall economic condition, as healthy, even robust. Prices are rising, in some places quickly. Yet, inventory of available-for-sale homes continues to decline, sharply once again in December.

It’s a glaring dichotomy that ever the NAR’s Chief Economist, Larry Yun, has been forced to grudgingly address.

Existing sales concluded the year on a softer note, but they were guided higher these last 12 months by a multi-year streak of exceptional job growth, which ignited buyer demand. At the same time, market conditions were far from perfect. New listings struggled to keep up with what was sold very quickly, and buying became less affordable in a large swath of the country. These two factors ultimately muted what should have been a stronger sales pace.

It’s the “exceptional job growth” premise that leads toward only confusion. It’s one of those terms, like “globally synchronized growth” or “economic boom”, that refers quite differently to only the mainstream depiction of the economy, the one that has been consistently overoptimistic about things for a decade. The actual data suggests an entirely separate set of circumstances, which is where all this misunderstanding comes in.

In truth, falling inventory is quite easily explained, and in a way that is perfectly consistent with labor market and national (labor) income statistics as they are. The BLS outside of the unemployment rate, which, for the nth time doesn’t include Americans who would work if there was work, actually has been describing a consistently and persistently slowing labor market. The timing of where that started matches with where resale inventory began to contract.

There is actually a big difference between an average payroll gain of 150k and 250k; the latter is barely minimal, while the former is what panicked the Fed into launching QE3 in 2012. Last year was by every reasonable measure not even close to a good one for American workers.

The primary effect of sluggish, constrained payroll expansion, along with parallel effects in other labor factors, is weakened aggregate income. Even people who are working start to become uncertain or even fearful when the jobs market as a whole slows down – and not just slows, but continues to decelerate year after year (after year). This trend will be starting its fourth year. At that length, workers and prospective workers become quite certain about their general uncertainty.

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180125_housing4.jpg

If your ground-level view of the jobs environment and therefore economy is far more unsteady and dour than exceptional, you are not going to be as sure about selling your existing home to move up, taking on a larger monthly payment in the process. The more people like you who pass on the opportunity to cash in on higher prices, the more that says this is a widespread view quite different from the narrative established in consumer sentiment surveys and what news outlets write about in their headlines.

The economy is what actually happens, not what people think other people think Economists say is happening. Talk isn’t cheap, it’s wayovervalued.

end

SWAMP STORIES

Congressional Republicans are feuding with the FBI on political bias. Republicans and Fox news are demanding the release of the 4 page memo, something that the Democrats do not want released.

a good summary of what is going on…

(courtesy zerohedge)

Congressional Republicans Are Escalating Their Feud With The FBI

The GOP’s feud with the FBI is escalating to absurd new heights, Politico reported.

As Special Counsel Robert Mueller pivots his investigation to focus on whether President Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice after finding no “there” there during his probe into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, the GOP is pushing back against political bias in the FBI, triggering outrage among Congressional Democrats.

Politico pointed out that Tuesday brought several dramatic developments in the ongoing investigative saga.

The New York Times reported that Mueller had recently emailed Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and last year interviewed FBI Director James Comey.

Meanwhile, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, accused FBI agents of engaging in a “conspiracy” to support Clinton and damage Trump, hinting that some of this behavior could’ve itself been criminal. Goodlatte took aim at a text messages between FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok and and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, with whom he was having an affair.

Goodlatte

Goodlatte

Not all of the text messages have been released, but they are slowly being turned over the Congress in batches. Though the bureau recently confessed that it had lost 50,000 messages sent between the two FBI employees during a five-month period in 2016. The FBI has blamed the erasure on Samsung. The DOJ has launched a probe into the missing messages, but some Republicans, including House Freedom Caucus chief Mark Meadows, have revived calls for a second special counsel to investigate the FBI.

“Some of these texts are very disturbing,” Goodlatte said, adding, “they illustrate a conspiracy on the part of some people, and we want to know a lot more about that.”

As we reported earlier today, some of the texts that have been turned over suggested that in the “immediate aftermath” of the election, a “secret society of folks” within the DOJ and FBI came together to try to undermine President Trump.

Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson called the text messages “jaw dropping.”

But views on the FBI’s purported misconduct, unsurprisingly, diverge along partisan lines, as the Hill points out. Democrats have painted investigations of the FBI’s conduct by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and the House Intelligence, Oversight and Government Reform, and Judiciary committees as efforts to discredit Mueller and the Department of Justice.

Democrats and the FBI have joined together in criticizing Congressional Republicans, who have so far refused to release a memo detailing what some Congressmen have described as a coordinated effort by the Obama administration to monitor members of the Trump campaign. Some conservatives have also joined in the chorus of people demanding the memo be released. But the lawmakers have so far denied a copy to everybody who’s asked – including the FBI.

Republican Trey Gowdy, chairman of the House Oversight and Government reform committee, said this refusal is justified because the memo’s contents were gleaned from documents turned over by the FBI, according to Fox News.

“To say we want to see your memo when for months and months they haven’t let us see lots of stuff we wanted to see — the memo came from what you gave us, FBI,” Gowdy told Fox News. “There is nothing new in there other than what you gave us and you showed us.”

For what it’s worth, some Republicans are still willing to give the bureau the benefit of the doubt, particularly regarding the lost text messages.

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.), whose panel is also investigating Russia’s election interference, told CNN Tuesday that the FBI had been cooperative in providing documents to Congress.

“I’m not going to read anything into it other than it may be a technical glitch at the bureau,” Senate Intel Committee Chairman Richard Burr told the Hill. “The fact that they have provided the rest of them certainly doesn’t show an intent to try to withhold anything.”

President Trump has been somewhat less forgiving…

Where are the 50,000 important text messages between FBI lovers Lisa Page and Peter Strzok? Blaming Samsung!

The pressure on the FBI has made even Trump allies nervous. Last night, Axios reported that Christopher Wray, Trump’s pick to lead the bureau, threatened to resign amid pressure from Trump and Sessions to fire Andrew McCabe, deputy director of the bureau and a close Clinton ally whose wife received money from the Clinton machine during a recent campaign for office.

After spending hours of closed-door Congressional testimony last month, McCabe announced that he would resign early this year.

Gowdy, who spearheaded questioning of McCabe, told reporters that his testimony contained “numerous conflicts.”

But regardless of what Congress does – or how much questionable behavior their investigations into the FBI uncover – without a special counsel, Mueller will continue to have the upper hand. After all, Mueller has the power to call a grand jury, which can approve indictments – evidenced by the charges he’s brought against at least four former Trump campaign officials. While it has subpoena power, Congress can’t arrest anybody…

…So without a special counsel, Republicans’ options for holding the bureau accountable remain limited.

END

Late last night, Fox news reports that the Dept. of Justice has reportedly started recovering many of hte missing Strzok/Page texts.

(courtesy zerohedge)

DOJ Has Reportedly Started Recovering Missing Strzok-Page Texts

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is in the process of recovering five months worth of missing text messages between two FBI employees accused of bias in their investigations of both Hillary Clinton and President Trump, according to Fox News.

On Tuesday, President Trump tweeted “Where are the 50,000 important text messages between FBI lovers Lisa Page and Peter Strzok? Blaming Samsung!” in reference to the fact that the DOJ blamed the five-month missing text gap on technical difficulties.

Where are the 50,000 important text messages between FBI lovers Lisa Page and Peter Strzok? Blaming Samsung!

The missing texts – which span the period of December 14, 2016 to May 17, 2017, were reported to Congressional investigators last Friday in a cover letter accompanying a 384-page document delivery, igniting a firestorm of speculation that the contents of the communications between the two Trump-hating FBI investigators was particularly damning. The two agents had previously discussed an “insurance policy” before the election in the event of a Trump win.

And now this from Hannity – word that the five months of missing texts, which are apparently in the process of being successfully recovered.

Sources are exclusively telling me tonight, multiple sources, that the Department of Justice is as we speak in the process of successfully recovering many of those text messages in that five month period of time from the Trump-hating FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page.

The DOJ is also trying to track down their mobile phones. This is huge because those texts are during that critical time during the so-called Russia investigation.

Here’s a big question tonight: was the deputy FBI director, Andrew McCabe cell phone impacted by this so-called glitch? McCabe, he was Lisa Page’s boss, and both she and Strzok talked about “the insurance policy in Andy’s office,” we believe that was McCabe.

The Fox News anchor also notes that former FBI Director James Comey may be in hot water over leaking a memo he says he wrote containing his concerns over President Trump pressuring him to go easy on former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn.

Also brand new tonight we have new revelations about one of the lawyers that is now representing disgraced former FBI director, soon to be probably investigated, national embarrassment James Comey. According to Buzzfeed, one of Comey’s attorneys turns out as his Columbia law professor buddy – the guy he leaked the memo to to the New York Times because he wanted a special counsel appointed, which turned out to be “oh, Comey’s other BFF Robert Mueller” You can’t make this up in a spy novel! 

It’s one giant incestuous circle of corruption. And we have even more proof; James Comey testified that he gave his classified memos To Robert Mueller. And according to the reports, special counsel interviewed Comey about his memos last year. By the way, they also collaborated before he testified. Those memos contain classified information. They were created on government computers, so Comey broke the law by removing them from the FBI, but it’s clear that Mueller didn’t care about any of that.

Mueller’s main focus is, has been, and continues to be carrying out a witch-hunt to unseat a duly elected President of the Untied States – President Trump. It’s ridiculous and it’s an abomination to our constitution and the rule of law.

To recap: right before the election, Strzok and Page texted about an “insurance policy” against Donald Trump becoming President.

I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy’s office – that there’s no way he [Trump] gets elected – but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk.” writes FBI counterintelligence officer Peter Strzok to FBI lawyer Lisa Page, with whom he was having an extramarital affair while spearheading both the Clinton email inquiry and the early Trump-Russia probe, adding “It’s like a life insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40.”

Seeming to support the theory that the Trump-Russia investigation is the “insurance policy,” text messages released last Monday make reference to a “secret society” of FBI and DOJ officials who held clandestine meetings “offsite” in order to solidify their plot to take down President Trump – while a whistleblower has allegedly confirmed this to GOP Congressional investigators.

If the five months of missing text messages are recovered in their entirety, it should shed valuable light on the mechanics of both the “insurance policy” and the “secret society” formed to effectuate it.

END

And the missing FBI text messages have been found

(courtesy zerohedge)

Missing FBI Text Message Have Been Located

The missing text messages from a critical five-month period between Trump-bashing FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, who both served on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team, have been located by the Department of Justice.

In a letter sent to congressional committees, Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz said his office “succeeded in using forensic tools to recover text messages from FBI devices, including text messages between Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page that were sent or received between December 14, 2016 and May 17, 2017.”

Horowitz sent his letter confirming the discovery of texts to Senate Homeland Security Committee Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wis., and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who had inquired about the messages.

“Our effort to recover any additional text messages is ongoing,” Horowitz added quoted by Fox News. “We will provide copies of the text messages that we recover from these devices to the Department so that the Department’s leadership can take any management action it deems appropriate.”


Peter Strzok and Lisa Page

This confirms a report from last night  according to which the DOJ was in the process of recovering the five months worth of missing text messages between the two FBI employees. And, as asked last night, “here’s a big question tonight: was the deputy FBI director, Andrew McCabe cell phone impacted by this so-called glitch? McCabe, he was Lisa Page’s boss, and both she and Strzok talked about “the insurance policy in Andy’s office,” we believe that was McCabe.

As reported previously, more than 50,000 texts were exchanged between Strzok and Page, Attorney General Jeff Sessions revealed Monday, with some 5 months worth of communications reportedly “lost.”

Two days ago the DOJ announced it had launched a probe into the missing texts.

“We will leave no stone unturned to confirm with certainty why these text messages are not now available to be produced and will use every technology available to determine whether the missing messages are recoverable from another source,” AG Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “If we are successful, we will update the congressional committees immediately.”

In an amusing twist in which the FBI tried to blame the lost messages on Samsung, officials said that thousands of FBI cellphones were affected by the technical glitch that apparently prevented those Strzok and Page messages from being stored or uploaded into the bureau’s archive system.

The five-month stretch of missing messages covers a period of time that includes President Donald Trump’s inauguration, the firings of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and FBI Director James Comey and the standing-up of former FBI Director Mueller as special counsel to investigate alleged Trump campaign collusion with Russian officials during the 2016 election.

In the bombshell 4 page “FISA memo” alleging surveillance abuse by the FBI, the Dept of Justice and the Obama administration, it has now been leaked that 3 people have been named;
  1. FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe
  2. Former FBI director James Comey
  3. and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein

and these guys are inflamed over the leak.

The Democrats are coming out with their memo disputing the facts but it is falling on deaf ears

(courtesy zerohedge)

Comey, Rosenstein, McCabe All Named In FISA Memo, First Leak Reveals

A bombshell four-page “FISA memo” alleging egregious surveillance abuse by the FBI, DOJ and Obama administration, specifically names FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, former FBI Director James Comey and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, according to the Daily Beast.

The GOP-authored memo made waves last week after it was made available to the full House of Representatives for viewing. With over 60 GOP lawmakers calling for its release, Capitol Hill sources on both sides of the aisle tell The Daily Beast that it’s only a matter of time before the general public is allowed to view the document – which is likely to stoke already-inflamed tensions between GOP lawmakers and the individuals named in the leak.

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Earlier this morning, I examined the classified, four-page memo from @HouseIntelComm regarding the FBI, DOJ, and the so-called . To put it simply, “WOW.” I joined the call to . Americans deserve truth and transparency.

The facts contained in the Republican majority-authored report are said to be “jaw-dropping and demand full transparency,” according to Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), while the top ranking Democrat on the House Intel Committee, Adam Schiff (D-CA) dismissed the memo as “profoundly misleading” talking points drafted by Republican staffers.

Several other GOP Congressmembers have weighed in. “I have read the memo,” tweeted Rep. Steve King (R-IA), adding “The sickening reality has set in. I no longer hold out hope there is an innocent explanation for the information the public has seen. I have long said it is worse than Watergate. It was #neverTrump & #alwaysHillary. #releasethememo.”

Along with the four-page memo, Congressional investigators learned from a new batch of text messages between anti-Trump FBI investigators that several individuals within the Department of Justice and the FBI may have come together in the “immediate aftermath” of the 2016 election to undermine President Trump, according to Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) who has reviewed the texts.

This is particularly interesting since the memo allegedly names Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein – who created Robert Mueller’s special counsel after former FBI Director James Comey was fired.

The thousands of texts @TGowdySC and I reviewed today revealed manifest bias among top FBI officials against @realDonaldTrump. The texts between Strzok and Page referenced a “secret society.”

While the “secret society” reference may have been in jest (“Are you even going to give out your calendars? Seems kind of depressing. Maybe it should just be the first meeting of the secret society,” Page wrote to Strzok), a whistleblower has allegedly confirmed the existence of clandestine, of high ranking U.S. intelligence officials which met “offsite” to conspire against a sitting President, according to Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI).

we have an informant talking about a group holding secret meetings off-site,” Johnson said.

“We have to continue to dig into it,” he added. “This is not a distraction. This is biased, potentially corruption at the highest levels of the FBI.” –The Hill

On Monday night, Reps. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) and Trey Gowdy (R-SC) told Fox News what they had learned from the new batch of communications between FBI investigators Peter Strzok and Lisa Page – contained within a 384-page batch of text messages delivered to Congress from the DOJ last Friday. Of note Ratcliffe says that Strzok and Page were included in the clandestine anti-Trump cabal at the highest levels of the American intelligence community.

In response to the memo, Congressional Democrats led by Adam Schiff (D-CA) drafted a “counter-memo” to “correct the record” regarding alleged FISA abuse contained within the GOP memo.

.@RepAdamSchiff announces House Intel Dems have written their own counter-memo; will seek to make public, too.

Schiff’s “counter-memo” came on the heels of an absurd letter written by Schiff and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to Facebook and Twitter executives, calling for the Social Media giants to combat “Russian bots” which were promoting the hashtag #ReleaseTheMemo.

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

NEW: Sen. Feinstein, Rep. Schiff urge Facebook and Twitter to investigate involvement of Russian bots in pushing “Release the Memo” campaign: “If these reports are accurate, we are witnessing an ongoing attack by the Russian government through Kremlin-linked social media actors.”

The letter’s claims were immediately shot down by Facebook, which told the Daily Beast that #ReleaseTheMemo hashtag has been pushed by actual Americans.

a knowledgeable source says that Twitter’s internal analysis has thus far found that authentic American accounts, and not Russian imposters or automated bots, are driving #ReleaseTheMemo. There are no preliminary indications that the Twitter activity either driving the hashtag or engaging with it is either predominantly Russian.

In short, according to this source, who would not speak to The Daily Beast for attribution, the retweets are coming from inside the country.

Mueller Obstruction Probe Said To Be Wrapping Up Much Faster Than Anticipated

President Donald Trump said last night that he’s “looking forward” to testifying under oath some time during the next two or three weeks. Well, according to Bloomberg he may just get his wish even as Republicans have so far failed in their push to convince the Justice Department to appoint a second special prosecutor to investigate the FBI.

The fact that Mueller is pushing to interview Trump – and, as reports from the New York Times and NBC have revealed this week, has recently interviewed several of Trump’s most-senior staffers – suggests the special counsel’s investigation into possible collusion between Trump and Russia – an investigation that has since pivoted to focus on whether Trump committed obstruction of justice, as well as the financial improprieties of his associates – appears to be inching toward its conclusion much faster than anticipated, Bloomberg reports.

“Clearly the names that are coming out now indicate that we’re into the obstruction of justice side of it,” said Stanley Twardy, a former U.S. attorney for Connecticut who’s now a white-collar criminal defense lawyer at the law firm Day Pitney LLP. “He’s now getting people who are closest to the president, closest to the issues.”

Indeed, Jeff Sessions, Dan Coates, Mike Pompeo and Don McGahn have all testified – and Steven Bannon is expected to meet with Mueller’s team later this month. According to legal experts, this suggests that the investigation is nearing its conclusion.

Michael Weinstein, a former Justice Department trial attorney who’s now a white-collar defense lawyer with Cole Schotz P.C. told Bloomberg that “Traditionally when you are interviewing people at that level you are doing so at the end of the investigation,” Weinstein said. “They have already established what they think are the facts and are now looking to see if these individuals are going to provide consistency with those facts or possibly take a different view of what the special counsel has.”

“They will have a meeting to discuss what they have, whether the facts revealed a violation of the law and, if the answer is yes, does it justify bringing charges or a referral to Congress for a filing of some obstruction,” he said. “Unless something earth-shattering comes out, Mueller is likely already thinking through what his next step is, and that could take a couple weeks.”

Mueller

Trump’s lawyers argue that Trump, as the president, reserves the right to fire his FBI director at will and was simply executing his constitutional authority. Trump has insisted that there was “no collusion,” and “no obstruction.”

But even if evidence supports an obstruction charge (setting aside, for a moment, the fact that Comey testified to Congress that he didn’t believe the president’s actions amounted to obstruction) legal experts claim that Mueller wouldn’t try to set a legal precedent at the expense of a sitting president, and that the bigger risk for Trump is perjuring himself during the interview – assuming he follows through with it, that is.

“I don’t think Mr. Mueller would ever try to make legal precedent at the expense of a sitting president in the context of an obstruction of justice charge,” Twardy said. He said the biggest concern for Trump in an interview is probably the risk of committing perjury, as Mueller will cross-check his comments and recollection against the testimony and evidence he’s obtained from Coats, Comey, Flynn, Sessions and others.”

Instead of pursuing criminal charges, Bloomberg reports that Mueller will likely refer his findings to the Republican-controlled Congress.

Meanwhile, the leaders of several Congressional investigations into campaign-era abuses on both sides have joined together to hold the FBI accountable for what appears to be an egregious abuse of power. Documents turned over by the bureau have revealed that agents favored Hillary Clinton over Trump.

They’re also examining the role partisanship may have played in excusing former Trump rival Hillary Clinton: Former FBI Director James Comey was accused of drafting the letter excusing Clinton before she was even interviewed. And when she was interviewed, she wasn’t sworn in.

Some Republicans have defended Mueller while still trying to hold the DOJ accountable.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley has also pursued bias allegations against the FBI over its handling of the Clinton and Trump probes, but he has defended Mueller’s investigation.

“I expect Mueller to do his job,” Grassley said Wednesday. “His job is to do the investigation” and go where the facts take him.

But others, including Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes – the Republican Congressman who’s so far spearheaded the party’s push to expose corruption at the FBI and DOJ – have questioned Mueller’s impartiality. And with the first details from the infamous FISA memo showing that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, Comey and Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe were each involved in Obama-era abuses, the Republican response to Mueller is just beginning to percolate, and could well be setting the stage for Trump’s eventual termination of Mueller.

end

I will  see you FRIDAY night

HARVEY

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