Feb 28/DOW DOWN 381 POINTS/NASDAQ DOWN 57 POINTS AND THIS WAS THE WORST FEBRUARY SINCE 2009/GOLD DOWN 70 CENTS AT $1316.70/SILVER DOWN ANOTHER 5 CENTS TO $16.38/JAPAN RECORDS HUGE PLUNGE IN RETAIL SALES AND ALSO A HUGE FALL IN INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION/CHINA SUFFERS HUGE FALLS IN BOTH OF THEIR PMI/THE USA’S BEA LOWERS ESTIMATES OF Q4 GDP DOWN TO 2.5%/MORE SWAMP STORIES/

 

 

GOLD: $1316.70 down $0.70

Silver: $16.38 down 5 cents

Closing access prices:

Gold $1318.30

silver: $16.42

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: $1342.38 DOLLARS PER OZ

NY PRICE OF GOLD AT EXACT SAME TIME: $1334.10

PREMIUM FIRST FIX: $8.28

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SECOND SHANGHAI GOLD FIX: $1337.74

NY GOLD PRICE AT THE EXACT SAME TIME: $1318.70

PREMIUM SECOND FIX /NY:$19.04

SHANGHAI REJECTS NY PRICING OF GOLD

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LONDON FIRST GOLD FIX: 5:30 am est $1332.75

NY PRICING AT THE EXACT SAME TIME: $1333.70

LONDON SECOND GOLD FIX 10 AM: $1317.85

NY PRICING AT THE EXACT SAME TIME. $1318.10

For comex gold:

MARCH/

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR MARCH CONTRACT: 0 NOTICE(S) FOR NIL OZ.

TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR:2749 FOR 274900 OZ (8.5505 TONNES),

For silver:

MARCH

3507 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR

NIL OZ/

Total number of notices filed so far this month: 3507 for 17,535,000 oz

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Bitcoin: BID $10,540/OFFER $10,610: DOWN $3.00(morning)

Bitcoin: BID/ $10,628/offer $10,698: UP $85  (CLOSING/5 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 CONSIDERABLE SIZED 1344 contracts from 191,999  RISING TO 193,343 DESPITE  YESTERDAY’S 17 CENT FALL IN SILVER PRICING.  WE HAD ZERO COMEX LIQUIDATION. HOWEVER, WE WERE AGAIN NOTIFIED THAT WE HAD ANOTHER STRONG SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE:  324 EFP’S FOR MARCH AND AND 2325 EFP’S FOR MAY AND ZERO FOR ALL  OTHER MONTHS  AND THUS TOTAL ISSUANCE OF 2649 CONTRACTS.  WITH THE TRANSFER OF 2649 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. THE 2649 CONTRACTS TRANSLATES INTO 13.245 MILLION OZ DESPITE  WITH THE CONTINUAL DROP IN OPEN INTEREST IN SILVER AT THE COMEX.

ACCUMULATION FOR EFP’S/SILVER/J.P.MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES, / STARTING FROM FIRST DAY NOTICE/FOR MONTH OF FEBRUARY:

48,989 CONTRACTS (FOR 20 TRADING DAYS TOTAL 48,989 CONTRACTS OR 244.945 MILLION OZ: AVERAGE PER DAY: 2637 CONTRACTS OR 13.185 MILLION OZ/DAY

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH:  244.945 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON. THIS REPRESENTS AROUND 34.98% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION

ACCUMULATION IN YEAR 2018 TO DATE SILVER EFP’S:  493.475 MILLION OZ.

ACCUMULATION FOR JAN 2018: 236.879 MILLION OZ

ACCUMULATION FOR MONTH OF FEBRUARY: 244.945 MILLION OZ

RESULT: WE HAD ZERO LOSS  IN COMEX OI SILVER COMEX DESPITE THE 17 CENT LOSS IN SILVER PRICE.  WE ALSO HAD A GOOD SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 2649 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 2649 EFP’S  FOR  MONTHS MARCH AND MAY WERE ISSUED FOR  A DELIVERABLE FORWARD CONTRACT OVER IN LONDON WITH A FIAT BONUS.   WE GAINED  3993 OI CONTRACTS i.e. 2649 open interest contracts headed for London (EFP’s) TOGETHER WITH A INCREASE OF 1344  OI COMEX CONTRACTS. AND ALL OF THIS HAPPENED WITH THE FALL IN PRICE OF SILVER OF 17 CENTS AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $16.43 WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING. YET WE STILL HAVE A FAIR AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX.

In ounces AT THE COMEX, the OI is still represented by just UNDER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 0.9667 BILLION TO BE EXACT or 138% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).

FOR THE NEW FRONT FEBRUARY MONTH/ THEY FILED: 3507 NOTICE(S) FOR 17,535 OZ OF SILVER

In gold, the open interest  ROSE BY A SMALL 211 CONTRACTS RISING TO 532,860 DESPITE THE CONSIDERABLE FALL IN PRICE OF GOLD WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING ($13.80). HOWEVER, IN ANOTHER DEVELOPMENT, WE RECEIVED THE TOTAL NUMBER OF GOLD EFP’S ISSUED FOR WEDNESDAY AND IT TOTALED AN HUGE SIZED  13,581 CONTRACTS OF WHICH  APRIL SAW THE ISSUANCE OF 13,581 CONTRACTS AND  JUNE SAW THE ISSUANCE OF 0 CONTRACTS AND THEN ALL OTHER MONTHS ZERO.    The new OI for the gold complex rests at 532,649. ALSO REMEMBER THAT THERE WILL 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 FEBRUARY 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 WE HAVE A GAIN OF 13,792  CONTRACTS: 211 OI CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX AND A HUGE SIZED  13,581 OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON.(16,117 oi gain in CONTRACTS EQUATES TO 42.89TONNES)

YESTERDAY, WE HAD 7855 EFP’S ISSUED.

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S GOLD AT J.P. MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES: (EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY STARTING WITH FIRST DAY NOTICE: 208,806 CONTRACTS OR 20,880,600  OZ OR 649.45 TONNES (20 TRADING DAYS AND THUS AVERAGING: 10,440EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY OR 1,044,000 OZ/ TRADING DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :   SO FAR THIS MONTH IN 19 TRADING DAYS: IN  TONNES: 649.45 TONNES

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

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS 649.45/2200 x 100% TONNES =  29.52% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION SO FAR IN FEBRUARY ALONE.

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S YEAR 2018 TO DATE:  1283.01 TONNES

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S FOR JANUARY 2018: 653.22  TONNES

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S FOR FEBRUARY: 649.45 TONNES

Result: A  STRONG SIZED INCREASE IN OI AT THE COMEX DESPITE THE HUGE FALL IN PRICE IN GOLD TRADING YESTERDAY ($13.80).  HOWEVER, WE HAD ANOTHER HUGE SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONG TRANSFERRING TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 13,581 CONTRACTS AS THESE HAVE ALREADY BEEN NEGOTIATED AND CONFIRMED.   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 13,581 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED, WE HAD A NET GAIN IN OPEN INTEREST OF 13,792 contractON THE TWO EXCHANGES:

13,581 CONTRACTS MOVE TO LONDON AND  211 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX. (in tonnes, the GAIN in total oi equates to 42.89 TONNES).

we had: 0 notice(s) filed upon for NIL oz of gold.

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

GLD

WITH GOLD DOWN $0.70 : NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD OF GOLD INTO THE GLD

Inventory rests tonight: 831.03 tonnes.

SLV/

WITH SILVER DOWN 5 CENTS TODAY: 

NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV

/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.590 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 1344  contracts from 191,999 UP TO 193,343 (AND now A LITTLE CLOSER TO THE NEW COMEX RECORD SET ON FRIDAY/APRIL 21/2017 AT 234,787) DESPITE THE FALL  IN PRICE OF SILVER  (17 CENT WITH RESPECT TO  YESTERDAY’S TRADING).   OUR BANKERS USED THEIR EMERGENCY PROCEDURE TO ISSUE ANOTHER GOOD 324 PRIVATE EFP’S FOR MARCH AND 2325 EFP CONTRACTS OR MAY  (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 CONSIDERABLE COMEX SILVER COMEX LIQUIDATION. IF WE TAKE THE  OI GAIN AT THE COMEX OF  1344 CONTRACTS TO THE 2649 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S, WE OBTAIN A STRONG GAIN OF 3993  OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS .  WE STILL HAVE A STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES THAT ARE STANDING FOR METAL IN MARCH (SEE BELOW). THE NET GAIN TODAY IN OZ ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:  19.96 MILLION OZ!!!

RESULT: A CONSIDERABLE SIZED INCREASE IN SILVER OI AT THE COMEX DESPITE THE  FALL OF 17 CENTS IN PRICE (WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING ). BUT WE ALSO HAD ANOTHER GOOD 2649 EFP’S ISSUED TRANSFERRING COMEX LONGS OVER TO LONDON. TOGETHER WITH THE GOOD  SIZED AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR FEBRUARY, 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 WEDNESDAY MORNING/TUESDAY NIGHT: Shanghai closed DOWN 32.66 POINTS OR 0.99% /Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36% / The Nikkei closed DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36%/Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED DOWN 0.68%/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN at 6.3225/Oil DOWN to 62.85 dollars per barrel for WTI and 66.45 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED DEEPLY IN THE RED  .   ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AT 6.225 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.3248 /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING MUCH WEAKER AGAINST THE DOLLAR AND ALL OTHER CURRENCIES. CHINA IS NOT  HAPPY TODAY (WEAK CURRENCY AND POOR MARKETS) 

3a)THAILAND/SOUTH KOREA/NORTH KOREA

 i)North Korea

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

 JAPAN AND CHINA

WOW  that escalated fast: In Japan, the authorities revealed two devastating economic numbers

  1. Retail sales plunged 1.8% month/month
  2.  Industrial production plunged 6.6% month/month

Then China reported a huge drop in their Manufacturing PMI and Service PMI.  On top of this was a poor reading on steel production

the world is taking note…

( zerohedge)

3 c CHINA

4. EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

ISRAEL/LEBANON/IRAN
According to Lindsey Graham, Israel is planning an invasion of Lebanon to destroy the Iranian sponsored rocket factory in the south of Lebanon.
( zerohedge)

6 .GLOBAL ISSUES

7. OIL ISSUES

Oil and gasoline continue to fall after another bigger than expected build.  They have been rising continuously for the past few weeks.

( zerohedge)

8. EMERGING MARKET

INDIA

The biggest financial fraud in India’s history is creating quite a mess.  The fraud now exceeds 2 billion USA dollars and now banks are afraid to loan to one another.

( zero hedge)

9. PHYSICAL MARKETS

Stephen Leeb believes that the new petro yuan futures operation commencing March 26 will usher in a new gold-based monetary system

( Stephen Leeb/Kingworldnews)

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

i)Revisions to the Q4 estimate has been lowered to 2.5 from 2.6% according to the BEA.  Trump needs 3% or higher.
( zerohedge)
ii)The following is a national manufacturing index: the Chicago National Manufacturing PMI tumbles from 65.7 down to 61.9 and this index has serially disappointed in recent weeks
( Chicago PMI/zerohedge)

ii b)Another economic indicator which is pointing to a huge slow down in the uSA economy: Pending home sales crash the most since 2010( zerohedge)

iii)Soc Gen reports that the Fed has go it all wrong.  The growth spurt is “already behind us”
( zerohedge)

iv)Total student debt now exceeds 1.5 trillion USA dollars.

A great commentary on student debt..
(courtesy zerohedge)
v) interview of David Stockman/CNBC
((CNBC/David Stockman)
iv)SWAMP NEWS
a)Judge Curiel who handled the case with Trump and his University funding trial has ruled that the Wall can be built over the objections of the State of California
(  Hanisch/Duran.com)

b)Trump blasts his Attorney General Sessions for his “disgraceful” investigation into the FISA abuse. Sessions wants the Inspector General to look into the abuse rather than his own justice lawyers( zero hedge)

c) Sessions responds

(zerohedge)

d)Another big joke:  Mueller probing what Trump knew about the hacked DNC emails. Another ‘nothingburger”

(courtesy zerohedge)

Let us head over to the comex:

The total gold comex open interest ROSE BY  211 CONTRACTS UP to an OI level 532,860  DESPITE THE CONSIDERABLE FALL IN THE PRICE OF GOLD ($13.80 LOSS/ YESTERDAY’S TRADING). SURPRISINGLY WE HAD ZERO COMEX GOLD LIQUIDATION.  HOWEVER THE CME REPORTS THAT  THE BANKERS ISSUED A RATHER SMALL COMEX TRANSFER THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE AS THESE LONGS RECEIVED A DELIVERABLE LONDON FORWARD TOGETHER WITH A FIAT BONUS. WE HAD A 13,581 EFP’S ISSUED FOR APRIL  AND 0 EFP’s  FOR JUNE AND ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS:  TOTAL  13,581 CONTRACTS. THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH THE BANKERS ON THESE TRANSFERS. ALSO REMEMBER THAT THERE IS NO DOUBT A HUGE DELAY IN THE ISSUANCE OF EFP’S AND IT PROBABLY TAKES AT LEAST  48 HRS AFTER LONGS GIVE UP THEIR COMEX CONTRACTS FOR THEM TO RECEIVE THEIR EFP’S AS THEY ARE NEGOTIATING THIS CONTRACT WITH THE BANKS FOR A FIAT BONUS PLUS THEIR TRANSFER TO A LONDON FORWARD… THE COMEX IS NOW AN ABSOLUTE FRAUD!!

ON A NET BASIS IN OPEN INTEREST WE GAINED TODAY: 13,792 OI CONTRACTS IN THAT 13,581 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE GAINED 211 COMEX CONTRACTS.

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 13,792 contracts OR 1,379,200  OZ OR 42.89 TONNES.

Result: A  GOOD SIZED INCREASE IN COMEX OPEN INTEREST DESPITE THE CONSIDERABLE FALL IN YESTERDAY’S GOLD TRADING ($13.80.)   TOTAL OPEN INTEREST GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 13,792 OI CONTRACTS..

We have now entered the non active contract month of MARCH where we LOST 303 contracts DOWN to 692 contracts. Thus by definition, the initial amount of gold standing for March is 692 contracts x 100 oz per contract =  69,200 oz or  2.1524 tonnes 

April saw a GAIN of 1103 contracts UP to 352,628.  The really big June contract month saw a gain of 1072 contracts up to 99,105 contracts.

We had 0 notice(s) filed upon today for  nil oz

THERE DOES NOT SEEM TO BE ANY GOLD AT THE COMEX TO BE SERVED UPON.

 

 PRELIMINARY COMEX VOLUME FOR TODAY: 246,898 contracts

CONFIRMED COMEX VOL. FOR YESTERDAY:  359,489 CONTRACTS

comex gold volumes are RISING AGAIN

Here is a summary of the latest gold trading volumes at the Comex per year

certainly the introduction of EFP’s has certainly had an effect:

Trading Volumes on the COMEX

Meanwhile, gold-trading volumes on the COMEX have never been higher:

end

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And now for the wild silver comex results.

Total silver OI ROSE  BY A CONSIDERABLE 1344  CONTRACTS FROM 191,999 DOWN TO 193,343 DESPITE YESTERDAY’S 17 CENT FALL IN TRADING).   HOWEVER,WE WERE ALSO INFORMED THAT WE HAD ANOTHER GOOD SIZED 324 EMERGENCY EFP’S FOR MARCH ISSUED BY OUR BANKERS (WITH 2325 EFP CONTRACTS FOR MAY 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: 2649.   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 OBVIOUSLY HAD ZERO LONG COMEX SILVER LIQUIDATION WITH A HUGE SIZED GAIN 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  3993  SILVER OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS

1344 CONTRACT GAIN AT THE COMEX COMBINING WITH THE ADDITION OF 2649 OI CONTRACTS NAVIGATING OVER TO LONDON.

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 3993 CONTRACTS 

We are now in the  active delivery month of MARCH and here the front month LOST 12,735 contracts FALLING TO  4934 contracts. Thus by definition, the number of silver oz standing in this active contract month of March is 4934 contracts x 5,000 per contract  =   24,670,000 OZ.  THIS IS A VERY STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING FOR METAL AT THE COMEX.

April gained 37 contracts up to 424 .

The next big active delivery month for silver will be May and here the OI rose by 13,129 contracts up to 150,405

We had 0 notice(s) filed for NIL OZ for the FEBRUARY 2018 contract for silver

INITIAL standings for MARCH

Feb 28/2018.

Gold Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oz nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz
 nil oz
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory in oz nil oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory, in oz  nil
No of oz served (contracts) today
0 notice(s)
 NIL OZ
No of oz to be served (notices)
692 contracts
(69,200 oz)
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
692 notices
69200 oz
2.1534
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 0 kilobar transaction/
We had 0 inventory movement at the dealer accounts
total inventory deposit into the dealer accounts:  nil oz
we had nil withdrawal out of the customer account:
total withdrawal: nil  oz
we had 0 customer deposit
total customer deposits: nil  oz
we had 4 adjustment(s)
i) out of HSBC:
132,734.637 oz was adjusted out of the dealer and this landed into the customer account of HSBC
ii) out of Brinks:
12,043.425 oz leaves the dealer and arrives at the customer account of Brinks
iii) out of Scotia:
33,189.356 oz leaves the dealer and this arrives at Scotia
iv) out of Malco
a strange one!!@:
209.278  oz leaves Malca dealer and strangely 212.278 oz arrives into the customer account
a total of 178,176.696 oz leaves the above dealers and arrives at the customer accounts or 5.54 tonnes
since only 2 tonnes are standing..this is very strange.
total registered or dealer gold:  358,689.776 oz or 10.44 tonnes
total registered and eligible (customer) gold;   9,132,857.478 oz 284.07 tones
THE COMEX IS AGAIN IN STRESS AS ONLY 10.44 TONNES OF GOLD ARE LEFT TO SERVICE DELIVERIES
 

For MARCH:
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 0 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 MARCH. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (0) x 100 oz or 0 oz, to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of FEB. (692 contracts) minus the number of notices served upon today (0 x 100 oz per contract) equals 69200 oz, the number of ounces standing in this nonactive month of MARCH (2.1524 tonnes)

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

No of notices served (0 x 100 oz or ounces + {(692)OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (0 x 100 oz )which equals 69,200 oz standing in this  nonactive delivery month of March . THERE IS 10.441 TONNES OF REGISTERED GOLD AVAILABLE FOR DELIVERY SO FAR.

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XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

IN THE LAST 17 MONTHS 70 NET TONNES HAS LEFT THE COMEX.

end

And now for silver

AND NOW THE DECEMBER DELIVERY MONTH

MARCH INITIAL standings

feb 28 2018
Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
  NIL oz
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
1.033,983.420
oz
brinks
Deposits to the Customer Inventory
1,804,169.260 oz
HSBC
BRINKS
No of oz served today (contracts)
3507
CONTRACT(S
(17,535,000 OZ)
No of oz to be served (notices)
1427 contracts
(7,135,000 oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts) 3507 contracts

(17,535,000 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 1 inventory movement at the dealer side of things

we had 1 inventory deposits into the dealer account

i) Into Brinks: 1,033,983.420  oz

total inventory deposits into dealer: 1,033,983.420 oz

we had 2 deposits into the customer account

i) into BRINKS:  5251.160 oz

ii) into HSBC: 1,798,918.100 oz

*** JPMorgan for most of 2017 and in 2018 has adding to its inventory almost every single day.

JPMorgan now has 135 million oz of  total silver inventory or 54% of all official comex silver.

total deposits customer account: 1,804,169.260 oz

we had 0 withdrawals from the customer account;

total withdrawals;  nil  oz

we had 3 adjustments

i) Out of Scotia:  1,003,206.500 oz was adjusted out of the customer account and this landed into the dealer account of Scotia

ii) out of HSBC:  1,671,695.000  oz  was adjusted out of the customer is this landed into the dealer account of HSBC

iii) Out of CNT 1,389,124.360 oz

total amount of silver adjusted out of the dealer and landing into customer accounts: 4,064,025.860 oz

total dealer silver:  55.558 million

total dealer + customer silver:  251,320 million oz

the silver comex also seems to be under tremendous stress to bring in silver for some purpose.

The total number of notices filed today for the March. contract month is represented by 3507 contract(s) FOR 17,535,000 oz. To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in March., we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at 3507 x 5,000 oz = 17,535,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of Mar. (4934) and the number of notices served upon today (3507 x 5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

.

Thus the INITIAL standings for silver for the March contract month: 3507(notices served so far)x 5000 oz + OI for front month of March(4934) -number of notices served upon today (3507)x 5000 oz equals 24,670,000 oz of silver standing for the March contract month. 

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ESTIMATED VOLUME FOR TODAY: 60,402 CONTRACTS

CONFIRMED VOLUME FOR YESTERDAY: 131,433 CONTRACTS

YESTERDAY’S CONFIRMED VOLUME OF 131,433 CONTRACTS EQUATES TO  667 MILLION OZ OR 95.28% 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 -1.44% (FEB 27/2018)
2. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV FALLS TO -0.44% to NAV (FEB 27/2018 )
Note: Sprott silver trust back into NEGATIVE territory at -1.44%-/Sprott physical gold trust is back into NEGATIVE/ territory at -0.44%/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 RISES TO -3.61%: NAV 13.61/TRADING 13.15//DISCOUNT 3.61.

END

And now the Gold inventory at the GLD/

FEB 28/WITH GOLD DOWN ANOTHER 70 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 831.03 TONNES/.

feb 27/WITH GOLD DOWN $13.80 WE HAD NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 831.03 TONNES

FEB 26/WITH GOLD UP $2.40/WE HAD ANOTHER INVENTORY GAIN/THIS TIME 1.77 TONNE ADDITION TO THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 831.03 TONNES/WE HAVE HAD 5 INCREASES IN THE PAST 6 TRADING GOLD SESSIONS/

FEB 23/WITH GOLD DOWN $1.15, WE HAD A GOOD INVENTORY GAIN OF 1.47 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 829.26 TONNES

FEB 22/WITH GOLD UP 90 CENTS AGAIN TODAY, WE HAD NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 827.79 TONNES

FEB 21/ WITH THE 90 CENT GAIN WE HAD ANOTHER DEPOSIT OF 3.15 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS TONIGHT AT 827.79 TONNES

Feb 20/WITH GOLD DOWN BY $24.25, THE CROOKS DECIDED THAT THEY HAD BETTER RETURN (DEPOSIT) 3.34 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS TONIGHT AT 824,64 TONNES

Feb 16/WITH GOLD UP BY 25 CENTS, THE CROOKS DECIDED AGAIN TO RAID THE COOKIE JAR BY WITHDRAWING 2.36 TONNES OF GOLD FROM THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 821.30 TONNES

Feb 15/NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 823.66 TONNES

Feb 14/AN ADDITIONAL OF 2.95 TONNES OF GOLD INTO GLD WITH THE HUGE GAIN OF 27.40 IN PRICE/INVENTORY RESTS AT 823.66 TONNES

Feb 13/WITH GOLD UP $3.40 WE HAD NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY REMAINS AT 820.71 TONNES

Feb 12/STRANGE!!WITH GOLD RISING BY 12.00 DOLLARS, THE CROOKS DECIDED AGAIN TO WITHDRAW 5.6 TONNES OF GOLD FOR EMERGENCY USE ELSEWHERE/INVENTORY RESTS AT 820.71 TONNES

Feb 9/AGAIN WITH HUGE TURMOIL ON THE MARKETS, THE CROOKS WITHDREW 2 TONNES OF GOLD FROM THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 826.31 TONNES

Feb 8/DESPITE THE GOOD GAIN IN PRICE FOR GOLD TODAY/THE CROOKS REMOVED .96 TONNES FROM THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 828.31 TONNES

FEB 7/AN UNBELIEVABLE 12.08 TONNES WAS REMOVED BY THE CROOKED BANKERS AND THIS GOLD WAS USED IN THE ASSAULT THESE PAST FEW DAYS/INVENTORY RESTS AT 829.27 TONNES

Feb 6/AGAIN VERY STRANGE: WITH TODAY’S TURMOIL, THE CROOKS DID NOT ADD ANY GOLD INVENTORY INTO THE GLD/INVENTORY REMAINS AT 841.35 TONNES

Feb 5  Strange,with all of today’s turmoil, the crooks at the GLD decided to add zero ounces into GLD inventory/inventory rests at 841.35 tonnes

Feb 2/no change in gold inventory at the GLD/Inventory rests at 841.35 tonnes

Feb 1/with gold up by $8.00/the crooks decided not to add any new physical gold metal into the GLD./inventory rests at 841.35 tonnes

Jan 31/with gold up $3.15 today, GLD shed another 5.32 tonnes of gold from its inventory/inventory rests at 841.35 tonnes

jan 30/with gold down by $4.85/GLD shed another 1.47 tonnes of gold from its inventory/inventory rests at 846.67 tonnes

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Feb 28/2018/ Inventory rests tonight at 831.03 tonnes

*IN LAST 331 TRADING DAYS: 110.12 NET TONNES HAVE BEEN REMOVED FROM THE GLD
*LAST 261 TRADING DAYS: A NET 47.19 TONNES HAVE NOW BEEN ADDED INTO GLD INVENTORY.

end

Now the SLV Inventory

FEB 28/WITH SILVER DOWN 5 CENTS TODAY/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.590 MILLION OZ/

feb 27/WITH SILVER DOWN 17 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.590 MILLION OZ

FEB 26/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.590 MILLION OZ/

FEB 23/WITH SILVER DOWN 10 CENTS TODAY, WE HAD ANOTHER HUGE ADDITION OF 1.315 MILLION OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.590 MILLION OZ/

fEB 22.2018/WITH SILVER DOWN  1 CENT TODAY, WE HAD NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 315.271 MILLION OZ/

FEB 21/WITH SILVER UP 15 CENTS TODAY, WE HAD A GOOD SIZED INVENTORY ADDITION OF 1.226 MILLION OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 315.271 MILLION OZ/

Feb 20/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ

Feb 16/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

Feb 15/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

Feb 14./NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY DESPITE THE HUGE RISE IN PRICE/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ

Feb 13./NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY TODAY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

Feb 12/AGAIN, WITH TODAY’S HUGE RISE IN SILVER PRICE, IN TOTAL CONTRAST TO GOLD: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

Feb 9/AGAIN WITH TURMOIL ON THE MARKETS, STRANGELY IN TOTAL CONTRAST TO GOLD: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

Feb 8/DESPITE THE TURMOIL TODAY AND A PRICE RISE: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

FEB 7/no change in silver inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 314.045 million oz/

Feb 6/WITH ALL OF TODAY’S TURMOIL/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 314.045 MILLION OZ/

Feb 5/ we had HUGE change in silver inventory at the SLV/ A DEPOSIT OF 1.131 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV/Inventory rests at 314.045 million oz/

Feb 2/we lost 982,000 oz from the SLV inventory /inventory rests at 312.914 million oz/

Feb 1/no change in silver inventory at the SLV/Inventory rests at 313.896 million oz/

Jan 31/ no change in inventory at the slv in total contrast to gold/inventory rests at 313.896 million oz/

Jan 30/no change in inventory/SLV inventory rests at 313.896 million oz/

Feb 28/2017: NO CHANGES TO SILVER INVENTORY/

Inventory 316.590 million oz

end

6 Month MM GOFO 1.86/ and libor 6 month duration 2.181

Indicative gold forward offer rate for a 6 month duration/calculation:

G0FO+ 1.92%

libor 2.21 FOR 6 MONTHS/

GOLD LENDING RATE: .290%

12 Month MM GOFO
+ 2.34%

LIBOR FOR 12 MONTH DURATION: 2.480

GOFO = LIBOR – GOLD LENDING RATE

GOLD LENDING RATE  = .140

end

Major gold/silver trading /commentaries for WEDNESDAY

GOLDCORE/BLOG/MARK O’BYRNE.

GOLD/SILVER

 GoldCore

Is The Gold Price Going To $10,000? (Goldnomics Podcast 3)

Is The Gold Price Going To $10,000? (Goldnomics Podcast 3)

In the third Goldnomics podcast, we consider whether the gold price will reach $10,000 per ounce in the coming years and what factors will drive prices?

As the “Everything Bubble” continues to inflate, higher gold prices appear to be on the horizon. Stephen Flood, CEO of GoldCore and Mark O’Byrne, Research Director and world renowned precious metals analyst discuss the outlook for the gold price with Dave Russell.

What will drive the gold price to new record highs over the coming months and years? We look at the dangerous developments in monetary policies. macro-economics and geo-political tensions that make an allocation to physical gold prudent for both investors and those with pensions.

Cutting through the financial markets jargon and looking at the risks to your investment portfolio that aren’t spoken about by most financial experts.

Listen on SoundCloud , Blubrry & iTunesWatch on YouTube below

Listen to the full episode or skip directly to one of the following discussion points:

1:07 Is the gold price going to $10,000 and when?

3:58 The 5 major driving factors that will be the key to driving gold prices higher.

4:39 What impact and influence will monetary policy play?

5:50 Why the debt to GDP ratio is crippling economies.

6:22 The dangerous trend that began with LTCM being bailed out by Wall Street.

6:55 Why you are now the lender of last resort for the banking system!

7:18 The little known fact that we are now in an era of bail-ins rather than bail-outs and what this means for your savings.

8:28 How bail-ins will impact small businesses and everyone that they employ.

10:05 Why “money in the bank”, is no longer “as safe as houses”!

10:39 How the old wisdom of “Cash is King”, can quickly become; “Cash is Trash”!

12:08 How governments have snuck in the highly controversial bail-in laws under the radar.

14:01 Why SMEs need to start to manage their exposure to banks just like large corporations.

14:58 Why high-net-worth individuals and those that manage family money need to manage their exposure to the banking system, just like large corporations.

15:05 Why higher interest rates are good for gold!

16:25 The interest rate environment that is not good for gold.

18:18 The ongoing effect of quantitative easing and how it’s artificially inflating all asset prices.

19:50 Why gold is no longer being pushed higher by quantitative easing.

20:30 The compelling research from PWC that proves the wisdom of gold’s inclusion in your portfolio.

22:29 Inflation, deflation and stagflation, where we are now and what it means for the gold price.

24:44 The inflationary and deflationary elastic band pressures in the economy.

26:58 Geopolitical tensions are rising and sabre-rattling is getting louder. Life in the Trump era and the breaking down of old alliances.

31:10 How to deflect attention – The Goebbels strategy!

33:45 The fault with the media and how they have let us down.

34:37 James Steele of HSBC and the performance of gold during times of uncertainty and war.

35:58 A new multipolar world emerging.

37:13 Why the basic fundamentals of supply and demand are very strong for gold.

37:35 Elon Musk mining gold on mars!

39:18 Have the Germans copped on to this risk to the Euro that other countries are blindly ignoring.

40:35 What underlies jewellery demand in Asia and the Middle East. It’s not what you think.

42:05 The increase in demand for segregated allocated gold and viewing gold as money.

43:58 The continuing Central Bank demand for gold, is it set to increase further.

44:50 These governments are encouraging their citizens to buy gold now!

46:35 Why we shouldn’t believe what these people say but instead watch what they do.

47:10 The breaking down of trust between nations can be seen by this one move.

47:30 What will happen to keep the gold price from appreciating anytime soon.

51:30 All gold is not equal.


People mentioned in this episode:

James Steel – HSBC Precious Metals Analyst

@JamesGRickards – https://jimrickards.blogspot.com/

Contact us and ask questions on social media:

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/goldcore

YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/user/GoldCoreLimited

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/GoldCore/  

Linkedinhttps://ie.linkedin.com/company/goldcore


Make sure you don’t miss a single episode……

Subscribe to the Goldnomics Podcasts on iTunesSoundCloud  and YouTube

News and Commentary

Gold prices flat, Fed’s rate hike outlook weighs (Reuters.com)

Gold, Copper Decline After Powell’s Remarks on Rates Boost Dollar (Bloomberg.com)

Fed’s Powell nods to ‘gradual’ rate increases, close eye on inflation (Reuters.com)

Stocks, Treasuries Slide on Hawkish Powell Remarks (Bloomberg.com)


Source: ZeroHedge

Silver Hits Key Support Amid Hedge Fund Exodus (ZeroHedge.com)

Silver Deeply In Backwardation and On Verge of Breakout – Turk (Gata.org)

China’s Great Leap Backward is bad news for investors (MoneyWeek.com)

Gold and the Global Ticking Debt Bomb (USFunds.com)

$1 Trillion Norwegian Fund’s Brave Bet On London’s Post-Brexit Property (Bloomberg.com)

How Do You Go About Buying Gold? (TheSun.ie)

Gold Prices (LBMA AM)

28 Feb: USD 1,320.30, GBP 951.14 & EUR 1,080.53 per ounce
27 Feb: USD 1,332.75, GBP 954.78 & EUR 1,081.26 per ounce
26 Feb: USD 1,339.05, GBP 953.00 & EUR 1,085.30 per ounce
23 Feb: USD 1,328.90, GBP 951.09 & EUR 1,079.20 per ounce
22 Feb: USD 1,323.50, GBP 952.66 & EUR 1,076.40 per ounce
21 Feb: USD 1,328.60, GBP 952.87 & EUR 1,078.16 per ounce
20 Feb: USD 1,337.40, GBP 955.97 & EUR 1,083.83 per ounce

Silver Prices (LBMA)

28 Feb: USD 16.44, GBP 11.88 & EUR 13.45 per ounce
27 Feb: USD 16.61, GBP 11.91 & EUR 13.48 per ounce
26 Feb: USD 16.67, GBP 11.88 & EUR 13.52 per ounce
23 Feb: USD 16.61, GBP 11.88 & EUR 13.50 per ounce
22 Feb: USD 16.47, GBP 11.86 & EUR 13.40 per ounce
21 Feb: USD 16.44, GBP 11.80 & EUR 13.35 per ounce
20 Feb: USD 16.57, GBP 11.85 & EUR 13.42 per ounce


Recent Market Updates

– Digital Gold Provide the Benefits Of Physical Gold?
– Weekly Briefing: Currency Wars – ECB Warns Re Trump, Russia and Turkey Buy Gold and BOE Bitcoin Warning
– Russian Central Bank Buys Gold – 600,000 Ounces Or 18.7 Tons In January As Venezuela Launches ‘Petro Gold’
– Bitcoin or British Pound ‘Pretty Much Failed’ As Currency?
– Bank Bail-In Risk In European Countries Seen In 5 Key Charts
– US-China Trade War Escalates As Further Measures Are Taken
– Gold Up 3.8% In Week – If Closes Above $1,360/oz Will Be Biggest Weekly Gain In Nearly 2 Years
– Is The Gold Price Heading Higher? IG TV Interview GoldCore
– Global Debt Crisis II Cometh
– Sovereign Wealth Funds Investing In Gold For “Long Term Returns” – PwC
– Bitcoin and Crypto Prices Being Manipulated Like Precious Metals?
– “This Is Where They Completely Lost Their Minds” – Hussman
– Brexit Risks Increase – London Property Market and Pound Vulnerable

Mark O’Byrne

end

Stephen Leeb believes that the new petro yuan futures operation commencing March 26 will usher in a new gold-based monetary system

(courtesy Stephen Leeb/Kingworldnews)

Stephen Leeb: The gold-based monetary system is on its way

 Section: 

8:04p ET Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Fund manager Stephen Leeb, in commentary posted tonight at King World News, argues that the forthcoming “petro-yuan” will not turn the Chinese currency into the next world reserve currency but rather will hasten a new reserve currency that is a basket of currencies including gold. Leeb’s commentary is headlined “This Gold Takedown is B.S. Because the Gold-Based Monetary System Is on Its Way” and it’s posted at KWN here:

https://kingworldnews.com/this-gold-takedown-is-bs-the-gold-based-moneta…

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

end

Lawrie Williams points out that gold is under good demand from eastern nations but supply is starting to fall

(Lawrie Williams/Sharp’s Pixley)

LAWRIE WILLIAMS: Gold demand growing as supply starts to fall

Gold investors should be looking at gold for the long term. Demand growth fundamentals are looking positive to this writer, while there is, in parallel, the prospect of diminishing supply. It is the combination of these factors that makes gold so appealing in the medium and long term. Even in the short term the general consensus among many analysts is that the gold price will likely rise as well – perhaps not by much but many are predicting a $1,400 gold price, or higher, by the year end. The recent price drop is seen as a blip in an overall upwards path for the yellow metal.

The big factor to take into account is the sustained move into the middle class earnings category in the world’s biggest population nations – China and India – both of which currently have around 1.3 billion people. By contrast the USA only has a population of some 320 million and is currently experiencing very slow population growth.

By contrast, China, currently the world’s largest gold consumer, is seeing huge growth in numbers entering the middle class classification. Total population is estimated at over four times that of the USA. Major, and well respected, consultancy McKinsey recently went on record as predicting that by 2022, 76% of China’s urban population will have moved into the middle class bracket. That nation’s urban population numbers around 750 million, so 76% represents around 570 million people in what McKinsey describes as the middle class earnings bracket – more than one and three quarter times the total population of the USA. McKinsey, however, classifies the Chinese middle class as urban households earning between US$9,000 and US$34,000 annually – which may seem low by U.S. standards, but purchasing priorities tend to be hugely different with many Chinese middle class families, even at the lower end of this income bracket, buying small amounts of gold on a regular basis as their prime savings mechanism. The Chinese banks make this an easy process.

In the West gold is mostly seen as a tradable asset and is perhaps more readily sold as and when the price rises. There are some in the West, notably large investors, who may see gold as a safe haven form of wealth protection, but in China that tends to be the norm rather than the exception and gold holdings there tend to be, consequently, in firmer hands than in the West and only released back into the market in cases of dire need. Gold may also be held as jewellery and artefacts which, again in the East, tends to be a realistic option because price mark-ups are very low.

The gold purchase pattern in India, the world’s No. 2 gold consumer, somewhat mirrors that of China, although probably coming from a lower base. But the birth rate is higher and the total population is set to exceed that of China in the next year or so – it may already have – and continue to grow at a significant rate. Gold hoarding is an integral part of the Indian psyche, perhaps more so than anywhere else in the world, so it wouldn’t surprise us to see Indian gold demand move back above that of China in the next few years, despite the government’s attempts to thwart this because gold imports are a substantial component of the country’s current account deficit! This year we have already seen a recovery in Indian gold imports to over 900 tonnes after an exceptional low of just over 580 tonnes in 2016. The 2017 figure is still below those of 2010-2012 and 2015, but is indicative of a possible return to the old higher levels.

As a proxy for gold flows from West to East we only have to look at Swiss gold export figures with around 80% of these gold exports tending to be destined for Asia and the Middle East. The Swiss figures are particularly significant because the Swiss gold refineries provide the key conduit for converting doré (impure) bullion, received from mines around the world, and large gold bars (mostly imported from the UK) into the small bar and wafer sizes in demand in the East. Overall, Swiss refineries currently process a volume equivalent to around two-thirds of global new-mined global gold output annually. These huge gold flow percentages are indicative of the total gold flows leaving depositories in the West for stronger hands in the East. Sooner or later these will generate a shortage in the West which will ultimately positively impact prices beyond the capabilities of the powers-that- be to hold them down.

Asian and Middle Eastern demand alone would seem to be more than sufficient to keep the gold train rolling, but it is all in addition to some still decent gold demand throughout the rest of the world. When the gold price came down from its 2012 peak, supply was boosted by huge liquidations of gold out of the big gold ETFs, but this source of supply has dried up and, if anything, gold is beginning to flow back into the ETFs – perhaps not at a high rate but the overall flow has very definitely seen a reversal to the positivel.

At the same time, the volume of new mined gold supply at around 3,200 metric tons a year, may well be beginning to fall . Peak gold may well be with us. The drop in the gold price following its 2012 peak led to cutbacks in capital projects and gold exploration around the world. While any output decline may be very slow at the moment, with some countries like Russia, Australia and Canada still seeing growing new mined supplies, the overall global trend is definitely downwards. It will take the industry some time – and probably much higher prices – to recover from this downtrend in output, particularly given the long lead times in bringing a new mine into production from scratch.

So, the twin effects of continuing high demand (in the East in particular) driven by the growth in the middle classes in the high population countries like China and India, coupled with a decline in new mined gold production – seen as likely to accelerate – are likely to increasingly put a strain on the supply/demand balance. This may not initially lead to a big price boost for gold, but it should keep prices rising at least gradually over the years ahead. Should the equities markets and bitcoin collapse, as many experts are predicting, then this could drive more investment into perceived safe havens like gold.

Looking at these gold fundamentals, the prospects for gold over the next few years look good – and given gold’s propensity to react positively to disruptive global geopolitical and geo-economic events we could even see much bigger increases than the general picture, as noted above, might suggest.

https://www.sharpspixley.com/articles/lawrie-williams- gold-demand-growing-as-supply-starts-to- fall_277232.html

-END-

Andrew Maguire’s Kinesis money which is a “bitcoin” but backed 100% by allocated gold and silver is set to go.

it think it would be a great idea to look at this!

please read at:  https://kinesis.money/#/

(Andrew Maguire)

Andrew Maguire

2:57 PM (1 hour ago)
to me

Harvey

Here It is my friend!  https://kinesis.money/#/ Please let everyone know.

Let catch up on Monday if you have time. We have billions in the hopper ready to be allocated on the 1st day of trading. The paper market days are over.

Warm regards

Andy

end



Your early WEDNESDAY 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 DOWN 6.3225  /shanghai bourse CLOSED DOWN 32.66 POINTS OR 0.99%  / HANG SANG CLOSED DOWN 423,94 POINTS OR 1.36%
2. Nikkei closed DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36% /USA: YEN FALLS TO 106.96/ STILL DEADLY AS YEN CARRY TRADERS DISINTEGRATE

3. Europe stocks OPENED DEEPLY IN THE RED    /USA dollar index FALLS TO 89.59/Euro RISES TO 1.2335

3b Japan 10 year bond yield: RISES TO . +.053/ !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 106.79/ 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:: 62.85  and Brent: 66.45

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 FALLS TO +.664%/Italian 10 yr bond yield DOWN to 1.988% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD DOWN TO 1.545%

3j Greek 10 year bond yield RISES TO : 4.422?????????????????

3k Gold at $1319.25 silver at:16.44     7 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $18.50

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble DOWN 4/100 in roubles/dollar) 56.33

3m oil into the 62 dollar handle for WTI and 66 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 106.93 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 0.9430 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.1519 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 FALLING to +0.664%

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 2.880% early this morning (THIS IS DEADLY TO ALL MARKETS). Thirty year rate at 3.139% /BOTH VERY DEADLY

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

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

Futures Rebound As Global Stocks Slide After Powell “Hawk Shock”

Asian bourses and European shares fell after surprisingly bad Chinese PMI and Japanese econ data added to a perceived hawkish tilt in Fed policy emerging from Chair Powell’s testimony which weighed on global equities. Benchmark Treasury yields held near a four-year high and the dollar was steady after Tuesday’s jump.

As a reminder, in addition to the unexpectedly hawkish Powell testimony, China disappointed with a broadly weak set of Mfg and Service surveys, as the Chinese NBS Manufacturing PMI printed 50.3 vs. Exp. 51.1 (down from 51.3), and the lowest since September 2016, while the Chinese NBS Non-Manufacturing PMI dropped from 55.3 to 54.4 vs. Exp. 55.0.

The result has been a sea in most global stock markets…

… if not S&P futures, which after hitting session lows shortly before midnight ET have managed to stage another modest rebound and were on the green side of unchanged this morning.

As noted above, the watercooler topic this morning was Fed Chair Jay Powell’s upbeat assessment of the world’s biggest economy, whose inaugural testimony  provided a hawkish view on inflation and was also optimistic on economic growth, which raised the prospects of 4 hikes for this year and subsequently weighed on equity markets across the globe. The market noticed, and has pushed the number of priced-in Fed hikes for 2018 to precisely 3, the highest yet; a little more hawkishness from Powell and the market will start considering 4 hikes as a realistic option.

What the markets are telling you today and year-to-date is that interest rate hikes are expected and that’s getting priced in,” Medha Samant, Fidelity International investment director, told Bloomberg TV. “The question is, despite all the upbeat data that we see coming out of the U.S., what is going to be the pace of these rate hikes and how quickly is it going to happen.”

Still, not everyone is convinced: as SocGen’s Kit Juckes notes in the aftermath of the disappointing Chinese PMI data, “it would take a big surprise from US ISM data to avoid a second monthly decline in global PMI measures. That, along with falling economic surprise indices, and signs that at a global level inflationary pressures aren’t noticeably building, fuels the view that the growth spurt at the end of 2017 is now behind us. The case for fading the long-end Treasury sell-off would seem to be growing” (more on this note shortly).

Investors’ focus now shifts to U.S. GDP data due Wednesday after Powell opened the door to four Fed rate increases this year, saying his personal outlook for the economy had strengthened. U.S. and European bond yields have soared in recent months amid speculation that the Fed’s monetary policy will be tightened at a faster pace, but for equity investors, that’s testing nerves. As Bloomberg notes, global stocks are poised for their worst month since January 2016 after years of central-bank stimulus push up valuations.

* * *

Meanwhile, European equities slide in tandem with their U.S. and Asian counterparts as investors digested Powell’s testimony; miners lead declines after weaker-than-expected China manufacturing PMI data. However, losses have been pared throughout the morning (Eurostoxx 50 -0.4%). In terms of sector specific performance, movements have been relatively broad-based with support for IT names following strong earnings from Dialog Semiconductor (+10%) which has sent their shares to the top of the Stoxx 600, energy names also firmer as crude modestly recoups some of its post-API losses. Most euro-area and U.K. bonds rise, while Germany underperforms after a soft 10-year auction.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index also dropped across the board as the impact from Fed Chair Powell’s testimony reverberated in the region and as participants also digested disappointing Chinese PMI data. ASX 200 (-0.7%) and Nikkei 225 (-1.4%) were lower with the worst performers in Australia also dampened by poor earnings results, while Nikkei 225 suffered from a firmer JPY as well as weak Industrial Production and Retail Sales data. Elsewhere, Hang Seng (-1.4%) and Shanghai Comp. (-1.0%) were the early laggards.

Of note: Bloomberg highlights that Chinese offshore investors became sellers of mainland-listed equities in February for the first time since 2016, dumping net 564 million yuan ($89 million) of A shares via the exchange links with Shanghai and Shenzhen, Bloomberg calculations based on daily quota usage showed. That translates into average daily net selling of 37.6 million yuan.

Elsewhere, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index consolidated and stays near 2 1/2-week high seen yesterday; yen outperforms after the Bank of Japan cut purchases of ultra-long JGBs, although offsetting tapering fears, the BOJ left its planned bond purchase amounts for March unchanged from February. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index is set to halt a three-month decline, with the yield on Treasury 10-year notes holding around 2.9%, close to cycle highs.

On the topic of the dollar, Citi writes that “all anyone in markets can talk about Jerome Powell, but has the game really changed that much overnight? Any sustained USD strength from here faces evident headwinds, but in the short-term, today is month-end, which might mean just the opposite.”

Indeed, it has been another difficult day for euro bulls as a still-crowded trade becomes a pain one for leveraged names. The euro briefly slipped below 1.22 handle for the first time since Jan. 18 as leveraged names that have been supporting the common currency in the past week offload part of their longs, but euro-area inflation data which met estimates helped to keep the currency off its day low. Month-end flows do no favors as they lean toward the dollar-supportive side, keeping cable below 1.3900 ahead of the EU’s draft Brexit treaty.

Elsewhere, crude oil was little changed as the International Energy Agency warned about seemingly unstoppable U.S. shale production. Sterling added to yesterday’s decline as U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May squared off for a fight with the European Union over a Brexit deal. Brent crude recovered from day lows, though remains below $67/barrel, with WTI crude near $62.60.  Traders will also be mindful of yesterday’s source reports stating that OPEC are set to meet with US shale producers next Monday. In metals markets, spot gold is particularly flat today in the wake of  yesterday’s Powell-inspired sell-off whilst Chinese steel futures were seen higher overnight with the move to the upside capped by soft demand. Dalian iron ore weakens for second day.

Wednesday’s agenda includes the second revision of Q4 GDP, Chicago PMI, pending home sales and MBA Mortgage Applications. L Brands and Mylan are among companies set to report quarterly numbers.

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures up 0.2% to 2,753.00
  • STOXX Europe 600 down 0.2% to 381.52
  • MSCI Asia Pacific down 1% to 177.16
  • MSCI Asia Pacific ex Japan down 1% to 578.27
  • Nikkei down 1.4% to 22,068.24
  • Topix down 1.2% to 1,768.24
  • Hang Seng Index down 1.4% to 30,844.72
  • Shanghai Composite down 1% to 3,259.41
  • Sensex down 0.5% to 34,189.13
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.7% to 6,015.96
  • Kospi down 1.2% to 2,427.36
  • German 10Y yield fell 1.2 bps to 0.667%
  • Euro down 0.1% to $1.2216
  • Italian 10Y yield fell 1.3 bps to 1.736%
  • Spanish 10Y yield fell 2.8 bps to 1.537%
  • Brent Futures up 0.2% to $66.79/bbl
  • Gold spot up 0.2% to $1,320.50
  • U.S. Dollar Index up 0.1% to 90.44

Bulletin Headline Summary From RanSquawk

  • European bourses kicked the session off on the back-foot following similar performance in their Asia-Pac counterparts, post-Powell
  • The broad Dollar continues to benefit from month end positioning and a more hawkish tone emanating from Fed chair Powell during the live testimony and Q&A session
  • Looking ahead, highlights include US GDP, Chicago PMI, Pending Home Sales, DoE inventories, EU Brexit Draft Treaty

Top Overnight News from Bloomberg

  • Jerome Powell opened the door to the Federal Reserve raising U.S. interest rates four times this year as he acknowledged stronger economic growth may prompt policy makers to rethink their plan for three hikes
  • Jared Kushner can no longer attend some meetings of the National Security Council, see the highly classified President’s Daily Brief or war-related intelligence after losing his top-secret security clearance as part of a broader White House crackdown, according to a person familiar with the matter
  • Eight Conservative Party lawmakers have backed an amendment calling for the U.K. to keep close ties to the European Union after it leaves, an attempt to reverse Theresa May’s Brexit policy that could threaten her political survival
  • U.K. consumer and business confidence was muted in February as Brexit obscured prospects for economic growth.
  • The Bank of Japan cut purchases of bonds maturing in more than 25 years for the second time this year, after yields declined on the back of solid demand before the end of the fiscal year in March
  • China’s official manufacturing gauge fell the most in five years in February as Spring Festival holiday closures curbed output and export orders declined
  • China-based Geely Group structured the purchase of its 7.3 billion-euro ($9 billion) stake in Daimler AG through complex derivative transactions that allowed the buyer to build a large equity holding while limiting the risks, people with knowledge of the matter said
  • China is ‘strongly dissatisfied’ with U.S. duties on aluminum foil and the country will take necessary measures to safeguard its legitimate rights, Wang Hejun, chief of the trade remedy and investigation bureau at Ministry of Commerce, says in a statement on website
  • China plans to cap the amount that investors can redeem from money- market funds on a single day, according to people familiar with the matter
  • Governor Haruhiko Kuroda says the Bank of Japan won’t continue its current powerful monetary easing once inflation hits its 2% target in a stable manner, even if the government puts pressure on the central bank to keep interest rates low

Asian equity markets were negative across the board as the impact from Fed Chair Powell’s testimony reverberated in the region and as participants also digested disappointing Chinese PMI data. The inaugural testimony by Fed Chair Powell provided a hawkish view on inflation and was also optimistic on economic growth, which raised the prospects of 4 hikes for this year and subsequently weighed on equity markets across the globe. ASX 200 (-0.7%) and Nikkei 225 (-1.4%) were lower with the worst performers in Australia also dampened by poor earnings results, while Nikkei 225 suffered from a firmer JPY as well as weak Industrial Production and Retail Sales data. Elsewhere, Hang Seng (-1.4%) and Shanghai Comp. (-1.0%) were the early laggards with investor sentiment dragged following a miss on Chinese Official Manufacturing and Non-Manufacturing PMI data in which the former printed its weakest since September 2016, while aluminium names also felt the brunt after the US confirmed tariffs on aluminium foil imports from China. Finally, 10yr JGBs lacked demand despite the broad global risk-averse tone, as Japanese yields tracked the upside in their US counterparts and which also followed a reduction of the BoJ’s Rinban purchases in the  super-long end. The PBoC skipped open market operations for a 2nd consecutive day. PBoC set CNY mid-point at 6.3294 (Prev. 6.3146)

Top Asian News

  • BOJ Cuts Purchases of Super-Long Bonds After Curve Flattens
  • Chinese H Shares Sink, Wrapping Up World’s Biggest Monthly Drop
  • Noble Group Perpetual Holders Unite to Oppose Restructuring
  • Afghan President Offers Taliban Political Recognition, Talks

European bourses kicked the session off on the back-foot following similar performance in their Asia-Pac counterparts, post-Powell. However, losses have been pared throughout the morning (Eurostoxx 50 -0.4%). In terms of sector  specific performance, movements have been relatively broad-based with support for IT names following strong  earnings from Dialog Semiconductor (+10%) which has sent their shares to the top of the Stoxx 600, energy names also firmer as crude modestly recoups some of its post-API losses. Other notable movers this morning post-earnings include St James Place (+3.9%), Ahold (+2.8%), Travis Perkins (-6.2%), Taylor Wimpey (-2.4%), ITV (-6.2%) and Bayer (-3.4%).

Top European News

  • Swedish Economic Growth Accelerates Along With Global Revival
  • German Joblessness Falls as Companies Struggle to Find Workers
  • Johnson: Irish Border ‘Being Used’ to Keep U.K. in Customs Union
  • New ITV CEO Disappoints on Ad Revenue Outlook, Lack of Dividend

In FX, the broad Dollar continues to benefit from month end positioning and a more hawkish tone emanating from Fed chair Powell during the live testimony and Q&A session. The index is retesting near term chart resistance in the 90.500-600 area, and could establish a firmer recovery base if it manages to close above. EURUSD may be pivotal on this front as the pair only just held the 1.2200 level having breached 1.2206 support, with stops expected on a clear break below and exposing several tech supports (1.2181/1.2173 Fibs and 55DMA at 1.2176) ahead of the January 18 ytd low at 1.2165. Above forecasts German jobs data has subsequently seen the headline pair move back into the 1.2220 area. The Greenback is also extending gains vs the JPY, but struggling around 107.00 again amidst decent offers above the big figure and option expiries at the strike (today and more running off this week). Cable looks prone to a deeper pull-back from 1.4000 and while under 1.3900 further declines could see techs target double bottom support circa 1.3855 (especially if the EU’s draft Brexit paper is particularly hard-line). AUDUSD is also hovering above key downside levels and a hefty 0.7800 expiry (1.1 bn), including 200 and 100 DMAs from 0.7784-76 and the 2018 low at 0.7758, while NZDUSD is inching closer to 0.7200 after Tuesday’s trade data miss. Usd/Cad is holding just below strong resistance at 1.2796 ahead of Canadian PPI and raw material price data.

In the commodities complex, WTI and Brent crude futures have seen a mild uptick in recent trade following last night’s API-inspired losses. Whereby, prices suffered despite a smaller than expected build to headline crude stockpiles, as it was also accompanied by an unexpected build to gasoline inventories. Traders will also be mindful of yesterday’s source reports stating that OPEC are set to meet with US shale producers next Monday. In metals markets, spot gold is particularly flat today in the wake of yesterday’s Powell-inspired sell-off whilst Chinese steel futures were seen higher overnight with the move to the upside capped by soft demand.

US Event Calendar

  • 7am: MBA Mortgage Applications, prior -6.6%
  • 8:30am: GDP Annualized QoQ, est. 2.5%, prior 2.6%; Personal Consumption, est. 3.6%, prior 3.8%; Core PCE QoQ, est. 1.9%, prior 1.9%
  • 9:45am: Chicago Purchasing Manager, est. 64.1, prior 65.7
  • 10am: Pending Home Sales MoM, est. 0.5%, prior 0.5%; NSA YoY, prior -1.8%

DB’s Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

The big story yesterday was yields spiking after the inaugural testimony from new Fed Chair Powell to the House Financial Services Committee. The first impressions of Mr Powell are favourable from us here in the Thematic Research team at DB as he gave our “yields are rising … and why they’ll continue to….” theme week some fresh impetus yesterday as 10 year Treasuries climbed over 7bps from the lows of the day after his Q&A to the House yesterday. Staying with yields the big event today is core PCE in the US which is the Fed’s preferred inflation measure. Before we delve into Mr Powell’s testimony, a reminder of the theme week so far and to highlight today’s piece on what higher yields mean for global equity investors.

So Powell’s testimony at Capitol Hill was fairly hawkish yesterday but it took until the Q&A for the market to decide this. Most were expecting a more ‘steady as she goes’ approach so it took investors a bit by surprise. As soon as the initial headlines from the prepared testimony hit the wires the main takeaway was perhaps Powell’s comments that “some headwinds facing the US economy are now tailwinds” and also that the policy committee “will strike a balance between avoiding an overheated economy and moving inflation to the 2% target on a sustained basis” and that financial conditions “remain accommodative”. There were also the usual mentions of seeing “further gradual rate hikes” and also that the “outlook remains strong”.

For the market however, Treasuries really got moving once the Q&A kicked off. The Fed Chair confirmed that while he wouldn’t prejudge, his personal outlook for the US economy has strengthened since December and that “we’ve seen some data that will, in my case, add some confidence to my view that inflation is moving up to target”. He also noted that “we’ve seen continued strength around the globe, and we’ve seen fiscal policy become more accommodative”.  Powell also added that he does not want “regulations to inappropriately slow credit”. Overall there appeared to be no sign of Powell being concerned about the mini selloff in February as impacting the Fed’s outlook for the economy while all the risks appeared to be biased toward upside to growth rather than downside to inflation, as well as the benefits from fiscal policy going forward. Much of the interest now will be on whether or not this translates into a change in the March dot plot.

10y Treasuries quickly spiked through 2.90% as Powell spoke after trading as low as 2.846% after his prepared remarks were released. They topped out at 2.923% and eventually closed at 2.894% (+3.1bp). The move was led by the belly of the curve with 3, 5 and 7y yields 4-5bp higher while 2y and 30y yields ended 3.8bp and 0.6bp higher respectively indicating a notable bear flattener. In Europe, 10y Bunds ended +2.6bps higher having chopped around earlier in the day in response to a slightly softer Germany CPI print (more below). Meanwhile the USD index closed +0.58% and just off the highs while risk assets suffered with the yield move. The S&P 500 ended down -1.27% – with declines accelerating in the evening session – and brought to an end the three-day winning streak, while the Dow ended -1.16%. The early moves lower in risk were also enough to see European markets edge into the red by the close of play (Stoxx 600 -0.18%). The VIX was up for the first time in five days to 18.59 (+17.7%).

The Powell testimony straddled some mixed US data with the hard numbers weak but with confidence data and survey data strong (see below). However the hard data was enough to push the Atlanta Fed GDPnow Q1 tracker down to 2.58% versus 3.20% previously and as high as 5.4% early in the quarter!

This morning in Asia, markets are all lower with the Nikkei (-0.97%), Kospi (-0.95%), Hang Seng (-1.36%) and China’s CSI 300 (-0.48%) all down as we type. Datawise, China’s February manufacturing PMI (50.3 vs. 51.1 expected) and non-manufacturing PMI (54.4 vs. 55.0 expected) were both below market and declined mom, with the former at the lowest since July 2016. Elsewhere,Japan’s January IP (2.7% yoy vs. 5.3% expected) and retail trade (1.6% yoy vs. 2.4% expected) were also lower than expectations. We’re definitely seeing global data dipping from a strong peak in the last week.

Turning to other markets yesterday. The Euro and Sterling fell 0.68% and 0.42% respectively given the USD strength. In commodities, WTI oil fell 1.67% to $62.84/ bbl, in part as the IEA warned about “explosive growth” in US output. Elsewhere, precious metals weakened c1.3% (Gold -1.15%; Silver -1.39%) and other base metals retreated as the USD firmed (Copper -1.16%; Zinc -0.96%; Aluminium +0.04%).

Away from the markets and onto the ECB’s Weidmann where he broadly reiterated his prior comments. On the outlook for rates, he noted the market’s expectation for hikes to begin in mid-2019 was “not completely unrealistic” and that ECB’s current policy guidance of keeping rates unchanged “well past” the end of QE “is a rather vague time dimension” and should be strengthened. On QE, he would have preferred the ECB to have set a “clear end date” when it  extended the program back in October.

Turning to the US, the US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said President Trump “is willing to negotiate” on the Transpacific Partnership, “whether we do multilaterals or going back to TPP…that’s something that’s on the table”. Elsewhere, the US commerce department has proposed duties of 49%-106% on Chinese aluminium foil for selling the product in the US. The issue will go to a vote on 15 March at the US International trade commission.

Turning to some Brexit headlines. On the transition period, the UK had recently suggested “around two years” with suggestions of potentially leaving it open ended. Yesterday, the EU negotiator Barnier was quite firm, noting that the transition period “must be short…must be clearly specified and for the moment this is clearly the line that we’re pursuing – a period ending on Dec 2020”.

Elsewhere, the UK trade secretary Fox noted if the UK stayed in the customs union post Brexit, this would be a “complete sell out” and limit UK’s ability to negotiate other trade deals. Finally, the UK PM May “remains committed to avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK” with more details to be provided in her big speech on Friday.

Before we take a look at today’s calendar, we wrap up with other data releases from yesterday. In the US, the CB consumer confidence index was above market and rose to a 17 year high (130.8 vs. 126.5 expected) while the February Richmond Fed manufacturing index also beat at 28 (vs. 15 expected). However on the downside, the January advanced goods trade deficit was the widest since 2008 at -$74.4bln (vs. -$72.3bln expected) as growth in imports outpaced exports. Elsewhere, wholesale inventories grew 0.7% mom (vs. 0.4% expected) while both core durable goods orders (-0.3% mom vs. 0.4% expected) and core capital goods orders (-0.2% mom vs. 0.5% expected) were below market but still up 6.9% yoy and 6.3% yoy respectively. Finally, the December FHFA house price index (0.3% mom vs. 0.4% expected) and the S&P corelogic house price index (6.3% yoy vs. 6.35% expected) were both slightly below expectations.

Germany’s February CPI was 0.1ppt lower than expectations, at 0.5% mom and 1.2% yoy respectively, with the annual rate at a 16 month low. Spanish inflation beat expectations though (1.2% yoy vs. 0.9% expected). The Euro area’s January money supply was in line at 4.6% yoy and the final reading on February consumer confidence was unrevised at 0.1. Elsewhere, the February confidence indicators across Europe were slightly ahead of market, with the Euro area’s economic confidence at 114.1 (vs. 114 expected), Italy’s manufacturing confidence at 110.6 (vs. 109.2 expected) and consumer confidence at 115.6 (vs. 115 expected).

Conversely, France’s consumer confidence was below market at 100 (vs. 103). Looking at the day ahead, Germany’s March GfK consumer confidence index is due in early morning. Then the flash February CPI readings for the Euro area, France and Italy will be out. Elsewhere, France’s January PPI and 4Q GDP along with Germany’s February unemployment rate are also due. In the US, the February Chicago PMI, second reading on the 4Q GDP and Core PCE as well the January pending home sales data will be due. Onto other events, the EU negotiator Barnier will brief permanent EU representatives on Brexit and the withdrawal text is also expected to be published.

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)Late WEDNESDAY MORNING/TUESDAY NIGHT: Shanghai closed DOWN 32.66 POINTS OR 0.99% /Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36% / The Nikkei closed DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36%/Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED DOWN 0.68%/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN at 6.3225/Oil DOWN to 62.85 dollars per barrel for WTI and 66.45 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED DEEPLY IN THE RED  .   ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AT 6.225 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.3248 /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING MUCH WEAKER AGAINST THE DOLLAR AND ALL OTHER CURRENCIES. CHINA IS NOT  HAPPY TODAY (WEAK CURRENCY AND POOR MARKETS) 

3 a NORTH KOREA/USA

/NORTH KOREA

end
 

3 b JAPAN AFFAIRS

WOW  that escalated fast: In Japan, the authorities revealed two devastating economic numbers

  1. Retail sales plunged 1.8% month/month
  2.  Industrial production plunged 6.6% month/month

Then China reported a huge drop in their Manufacturing PMI and Service PMI.  On top of this was a poor reading on steel production

the world is taking note…

(courtesy zerohedge)

Japanese, Chinese Data Disaster Crushes ‘Global Synchronous Recovery’ Narrative

US data has been ugly in recent weeks, disappointing to its weakest in 4 months

European data has been gravely disappointing as Draghi tries to pull the region out of QE.

And tonight we get confirmation of Asia’s demise as first Japan and then China show signs of serious economic slowdowns.

First Japan, which saw retail sales plunge 1.8% – 3 times worse than expected, in January – the biggest plunge since Feb 2016

But then Japanese Industrial Production crashed 6.6% MoM – its biggest collapse since the 2011 tsunami!

And then China data hit…

Even allowing for the lunar new year’s distortions, Chinese PMI data is a disaster, piling on to the disaster that saw 1st Tier home prices sink most since 2015, and Anbang Insurance bailed out by regulators (due to liquidity concerns).

While some suggested pollution curbs (or regulatory efforts to control debt and leverage) could be blamed for the declines, consensus economists were likely fully aware of the calendar and the government policies and still drastically misplaced their optimism.

The Manufacturing PMI fell to 50.3, compared with a 51.1 forecast in Bloomberg’s economist survey and 51.3 the prior month.

Under the hood in manufacturing, both imports and new export orders contracted (readings below 50), and input and output price growth slumped, with small enterprises dominating the collapse.

The Non-Manufacturing PMI slipped to 54.4 from 55.3 the prior month, the statistics bureau said Wednesday.

Selling prices contracted, as did employment, new export orders, and work backlogs

The Composite index covering both services and manufacturing stood at 52.9, versus 54.6 in January. Numbers above 50 indicate improving conditions

The Steel Industry PMI sunk to 49.5, below 50, signaling a contraction as output collapsed.

*  *  *

All of which has crushed the hopes and dreams of the global synchronous recovery narrative – as global macro data surprises have collapsed into the negative and lowest since Sept 2016…

All of which was nothing but China’s massive credit impulse flooding through the global economy…

Coming later tonight is Indian PMI, Malaysian inflation, Thailand trade data and Hong Kong GDP figures… so there’s still hope?

end

c) REPORT ON CHINA

4. EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

8. EMERGING MARKET

INDIA

The biggest financial fraud in India’s history is creating quite a mess.  The fraud now exceeds 2 billion USA dollars and now banks are afraid to loan to one another.

(courtesy zero hedge)

Indian Banks Face Crippling Credit Crunch As PNB Scandal Worsens

The biggest financial fraud in India’s history just got bigger.

On Monday, Punjab National Bank disclosed that a fraud previously believed to be $1.7 billion had swollen to $2 billion as the true extent of the fraud is still coming into focus.

But the impact that this now-$2 billion fraud has had on the shares of PNB and other state-run Indian banks is having a wide-ranging impact across the country’s financial system, according to Bloomberg.

Foreign banks, worried about the systemic lapses that the scandal has exposed, have become unwilling to lend money to smaller Indian firms – causing massive disruptions in trade finance. All of this pressure has hammered the Indian rupee, which is on track for its first monthly drop since September. This is largely because India’s economy, like the US, runs a trade deficit, and depends on capital inflows to function.

PNB

Foreign capital comes through foreign funds’ purchases of Indian stocks and bonds, local exporters’ sale of foreign-currency earnings and dollar loans from foreign banks. India is one of the world’s biggest users of trade funding worldwide, according to the ICC Global Survey 2017.

The fraud was purportedly masterminded by Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi, both of whom are on the run.

The two men worked with a PNB employee named Gokulnath Shetty, who recently retired. Shetty would issue fraudulent letters of undertaking to help companies create by Choksi and Modi apply for loans through the foreign branches of other Indian banks. The fraud continued as, when it came time to repay the loans, Shetty would issue still more LoU’s to cover the balance.

Citigroup Inc., Deutsche Bank AG, Standard Chartered Plc and HSBC Holdings Plc are among banks reducing exposure to these transactions, used by smaller companies to access short-term dollar funding, said people with knowledge of the matter. As questions are raised about the creditworthiness of guarantees from Indian state-run banks, rates have risen by as much as 0.5 percentage point for some types of financing, the people said, asking not to be identified as the details are private.

Spokesmen in Mumbai for Deutsche Bank, HSBC and Citigroup declined to comment. “We continue to support our clients on transactions that meet our internal controls and standards,” a spokesman for Standard Chartered said by email.

If doubts about the safety of Indian firms continue to grow, some firms may soon be forced to pay a full percentage point above Libor, compared with 0.5 percentage point before the PNB fraud was disclosed. As Bloomberg points out, the interlinked nature of global trade means trust is a crucial component of these transactions.

BigBorrowers

The one silver lining is that at least larger Indian companies, which have direct access to funding from foreign lenders and don’t rely on interim guarantees, haven’t been affected by the credit crunch.

Possibly making matters worse, PNB has blamed other banks for negligence by failing to detect the fraud, though the fact that the bank’s internal controls weren’t connected to SWIFT – the international banking telecommunications system – making it much more difficult to detect the fraud.

So the real question is: Will India’s banking regulators finally act to install meaningful controls? Or will the fallout from this short-term finance crunch continue to worsen until it blossoms into an acute capital-flight crisis.

 end

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

Euro/USA 1.2314 DOWN .0012/ 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 IN THE RED 

USA/JAPAN YEN 106.93 DOWN  0.490 (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/DEADLY UNWINDING OF YEN CARRY TRADE

GBP/USA 1.3809 DOWN .0092(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 1.2775 UP .0003 (CANADA WORRIED ABOUT TRADE WITH THE USA WITH TRUMP ELECTION/ITALIAN EXIT AND GREXIT FROM EU/(TRUMP INITIATES LUMBER TARIFFS ON CANADA)

Early THIS WEDNESDAY morning in Europe, the Euro FELL by 12 basis points, trading now ABOVE the important 1.08 level RISING to 1.2214; / Last night Shanghai composite CLOSED DOWN 32.66  OR 0.99% /   Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36%  /AUSTRALIA CLOSED DOWN 0.68% / EUROPEAN BOURSES DEEPLY IN THE RED  

The NIKKEI: this WEDNESDAY morning CLOSED DOWN 321.62 POINTS OR 1.44%

Trading from Europe and Asia:
1. Europe stocks OPENED ALL IN THE RED

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / : Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 423.94 POINTS OR 1.36%  / SHANGHAI CLOSED DOWN 32.66 OR 0.99%   /

Australia BOURSE CLOSED DOWN 0.68% /

Nikkei (Japan)CLOSED DOWN 321.62 POINTS OR 1.44%

INDIA’S SENSEX  IN THE RED

Gold very early morning trading: 1320.35

silver:$16.44

Early WEDNESDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield: 2.881% !!! DOWN 1  IN POINTS from TUESDAY night in basis points and it is trading WELL ABOVE resistance at 2.27-2.32%. (POLICY FED ERROR)/ VERY DEADLY

The 30 yr bond yield 3.139 DOWN 2 IN BASIS POINTS from MONDAY night. (POLICY FED ERROR)/DEADLY

USA dollar index early WEDNESDAY morning: 90.51 UP 15  CENT(S) from TUESDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers WEDNESDAY MORNING

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And now your closing WEDNESDAY NUMBERS \1 PM

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 1.991% DOWN 2  in basis point(s) yield from TUESDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: +.0.053% UP 1/2    in basis points yield from TUESDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.539% DOWN 3  IN basis point yield from TUESDAY/

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.974 DOWN 4 POINTS in basis point yield from TUESDAY/

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 44 points HIGHER than Spain.

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: +.679%  UP 2  IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY

END

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IMPORTANT CURRENCY CLOSES FOR WEDNESDAY

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

Euro/USA 1.2219 DOWN.0006 (Euro DOWN 6 Basis points/ represents to DRAGHI A COMPLETE POLICY FAILURE/

USA/Japan: 106.63 UP 0.795 Yen UP 80 basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.3800 DOWN .01023( POUND DOWN 102 BASIS POINTS)

USA/Canada 1.2799 UP  .0028 Canadian dollar DOWN 28 Basis points AS OIL FELL TO $62.08

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This afternoon, the Euro was DOWN 6 to trade at 1.2219

The Yen FELL to 106.63 for a GAIN of 80 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 102 basis points, trading at 1.3800/

The Canadian dollar FELL by 28 basis points to 1.2799/ WITH WTI OIL FALLING TO : $62.08

The USA/Yuan closed AT 6.3300
the 10 yr Japanese bond yield closed at +.053%  UP 1/2  BASIS POINTS / yield/
Your closing 10 yr USA bond yield DOWN 2 IN basis points from TUESDAY at 2.875% //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic USA 30 yr bond yield: 3.137  DOWN 5  in basis points on the day /

THE RISE IN BOTH THE 10 YR AND THE 30 YR ARE VERY PROBLEMATIC FOR VALUATIONS

Your closing USA dollar index, 90.49 UP 14 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 WEDNESDAY: 1:00 PM EST

London: CLOSED DOWN 50.54 POINTS OR 0.69%
German Dax :CLOSED DOWN 54.88 POINTS OR 0.44%
Paris Cac CLOSED DOWN 23.44 POINTS OR 0.44%
Spain IBEX CLOSED DOWN 59.90 POINTS OR 0.61%

Italian MIB: CLOSED  DOWN 18.25 POINTS OR 0.08%

The Dow closed DOWN 380.83 POINTS OR 1.50%

NASDAQ WAS DOWN 57.35 Points OR 0.78% 4.00 PM EST

WTI Oil price; 62.08 1:00 pm;

Brent Oil: 65.64 1:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN ROUBLE CROSS: 56.24 DOWN 7/100 ROUBLES/DOLLAR (ROUBLE HIGHER BY 7 BASIS PTS)

TODAY THE GERMAN YIELD FALLS TO +.656% 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:$61.52

BRENT: $64.64

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: 2.8640%   THIS RAPID ASSENT IN YIELD IS VERY DANGEROUS/DERIVATIVES START TO BLOW UP/ dangerous/stays extremely high in yield/

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 3.128%/BROKE GUNDLACH’S KEY 3.00% AGAIN WHERE ALL VALUATIONS ON STOCKS BLOW UP/ VERY DEADLY

EURO/USA DOLLAR CROSS: 1.2197 down.0029  (down 29 BASIS POINTS)

USA/JAPANESE YEN:106.72 DOWN 0.705/ YEN UP 71 BASIS POINTS/ very dangerous as yen carry traders are getting killed/yen continues to rise despite the NYSE rising.

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 90.64 up 28 cent(s)/dangerous as the lower the dollar the higher the inflation.

The British pound at 5 pm: Great Britain Pound/USA: 1.3769 : DOWN 0.01344  (FROM LAST NIGHT DOWN 134 POINTS)

Canadian dollar: 1.2829 DOWN 58 BASIS pts

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: +0.656%


VOLATILITY INDEX:  19.85  CLOSED  up   1.26  

END

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

TRADING IN GRAPH FORM FOR THE DAY

WTFebruary: Stocks Worst In 9 Years As Record Win-Streak Abruptly Ends

This is the first down-February for The Dow since 2009, the worst February for the S&P 500 in 9 years, first down-month since Oct 2016, and biggest monthly drop since Jan 2016 (right before the Shanghai Accord)…

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Short volatility in January vs short volatility in February

Well it happened…

This is also the worst month since August 2015 for ‘balanced’ portfolios with an aggregate bond and stock mix down dramatically (both bonds and stocks down)…

All the major RP funds bounced back but had ugly months in the end…

Let’s look at February for US equity indices – first cash…

And futures (which show the more extreme swings)…

Stuff started to hit the fan into the close today…Dow is down 700 points from when Powell started speaking in hawkish tones (and VIX is up 5vols, back above 20)

So much for “rebalancing flows” into month-end.

Observing the rest of the February carnage…

  • Trannies worst month since Jan 2016
  • Small Caps worst month since Oct 2016
  • VIX biggest monthly jump since Aug 2015
  • 30Y TSY Yield biggest monthly jump since Nov 2016
  • 2Y TSY Yield up 6 straight months
  • HY Credit (HYG) worst month since Jan 2016
  • HY Spreads worst month since Sept 2015
  • USD Index up most since Feb 2017
  • WTI worst month since Aug 2017
  • Gold worst month since Sept 2017
  • Silver worst month since Nov 2016

Since The Fed last hiked rates, Gold is the winner and bonds the biggest loser…

The February equity carnage has been global…

  • European stocks had their worst month since June 2016 (Brexit) and worst Feb since 2009.
  • Japan’s worst month since June 2016.
  • China’s worst month since Jan 2016.

S&P saw its ‘VIX’ up most in Feb but the entire vol complex ended higher…

The S&P broke below its 50DMA…

Liquidity disappeared today – this was the lowest liquidity for any GDP data release day since at least 2008 (h/t Nanex)

Treasuries rallied today, erasing the Powell Pop in yields from yesterday…

Treasury yields were up dramatically in February (even more than January) – most since Nov 2016 (post-election spike)…

The yield curve has flattened dramatically in the last few days…

But February saw the biggest steepening in the curve since July 2017 (in fact the only steepening month since then).

10Y Breakevens are now up 6 months in a row (February barely scratched out a 1bps rise though)

On a side note, stocks were tick for tick with breakevens today…

The Dollar Index extended its recent gains today (best month for Dollar Index since Feb 2017) but continues to trade in a relatively narrow range…

Dollar strength sparked more weakness across commodities today and while WTI plunged , silver was February’s worst performer…

All the PMs ended lower on the month…

WTI Crude had its first down month since August, tumbling below $62 handle today…

Cryptos were mixed in Feb – Bitcoin and Litecoin managed gains while Ripple and Ether tumbled…

Finally, we note Bank of America’s comments on just how crazy the last two years have been…

The 2nd day of Yellen’s Humphrey-Hawkins testimony on Feb 11th 2016 marked the last great “entry point” into the credit & equity bull market. At the time the meltdown in China/EM/oil/HY induced extremely bearish Positioning (the BofAML Bull & Bear Indicator was 0), tumbling global Profit estimates (-7% YoY), and a big Policy stimulus (Chinese/ECB credit easing)…all of which swiftly followed Yellen’s defense of the Fed’s decision not to resort to a Negative Interest Rate Policy in the winter of 2016.

And what an entry point it was… little more than two years later on the 1st day of incoming Fed Chair Powell’s testimony, global stock markets are up 58% (a remarkable $30 trillion in market cap), CCC-rated US high yield bonds 69%, bank stocks 68%, Emerging Market equities 81%, tech stocks 92%, oil prices 139%. Only two asset classes have been in bear markets since Feb’2016: the US dollar (-8%), and volatility (both the MOVE & VIX indices recently hit 50-year lows).

But one wonders, is that fun over now that China’s credit impulse has disappeared and central bank balance sheets are set to compress?

Bonus Chart:  According to analysts at Bespoke Investment Group the high-flying technology sector hit a potentially ominous milestone on Tuesday: It now amounts to more than 25 percent of the S&P 500 Index.

“It’s the first time the sector has made up at least a quarter of the S&P since a one-year period that ran from Thanksgiving 1999 through Thanksgiving 2000…Notably, the weighting only got above 25 percent for the final four months of the dot-com bubble when share prices were going insane.”

 END
EARLY MORNING TRADING/USA

VIX Flash-Crashes On GDP Print

Seconds after the US government released its latest guess at what Q4 GDP growth looked like (in line with expectations), VIX suddenly flash-crashed from above 18 to 15.65, only to immediately scream back higher as if nothing happened…

Of course that flash-crash sparked instant momentum in stocks to ‘prove’ how great the economy is doing…

END
Revisions to the Q4 estimate has been lowered to 2.5 from 2.6% according to the BEA.  Trump needs 3% or higher.
(courtesy zerohedge)

Q4 GDP Revised Lower To 2.5% Despite Stronger Spending

In what may be the most unremarkable GDP revision in years, moments ago the BEA revised its initial Q4 2017 GDP estimate from 2.6% to 2.5%, lowering the number by fractions of a basis point, to 2.530% specifically, and in line with estimates.

According to the Dept of Commerce, the downward revision reflected a downward revision to consumer spending on goods, and a small downward revision to inventory investment. These downward revisions were partly offset by upward revisions to consumer spending on services and to housing investment.

The revision lower took place even though personal consumption, measured by PCE, rose at a 3.8% annualized rate, higher than the 3.6% estimate, and unchanged from last quarter despite reports that showed a sharp drop in retail sales to close the year. Core PCE was also in line with both expectations and the initial estimate at 1.9%.

Nonresidential fixed investment, or spending on equipment, structures and intellectual property rose 6.6% in 4Q after rising 4.7% prior quarter, if also barely changed from the initial estimate. .

Other revisions were similarly de minimis, with private inventories barely moving (from -0.67% to -0.70%), Net Trade also stayed the same as in the initial estimate, the same as government consumption.

The changes, or lack thereof, are shown in the chart below.

Overall, there were virtually no changes to talk about, and with the data clearly well in the rearview mirror, the question the market is focused on is what will Q1 GDP be when it is reported in 2 months time.

 end
The following is a national manufacturing index: the Chicago National Manufacturing PMI tumbles from 65.7 down to 61.9 and this index has serially disappointed in recent weeks
(courtesy Chicago PMI/zerohedge)

Chicago PMI Tumbles To 6-Month Lows

After a disappointing drop (and miss) in January, Chicago PMI tumbled further (from 65.7 to 61.9) as US macro data continues to serially disappointed in recent weeks.

Against expectations of a small drop to 64.1, Chicago PMI in February dropped to 61.9 – below even the lowest of economist estimates (forecast range 62 – 68.1 from 30 economists surveyed).

None of the subcomponents rose in February.

  • Prices paid rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion
  • New orders rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion
  • Employment rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion
  • Inventories rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion
  • Supplier deliveries rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion
  • Production rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion
  • Order backlogs rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion

This is the lowest print since August 2017.

As the chart above shows, US economic data has been disappointing so far in 2018 and this Chicago print merely piles on the narrative that the short-term exuberance of an apparently global synchronous recovery are fading fast…

end

end

Another economic indicator which is pointing to a huge slow down in the uSA economy: Pending home sales crash the most since 2010

(courtesy zerohedge)

January Pending Home Sales Crash Most Since 2010

After New- and Existing-Home-Sales have already disappointed, Pending Home-Sales just collapsed too (to the lowest since Oct 2014) to confirm January was a bloodbath for the real estate market.

Pending Home Sales plunged 4.7% in January (massively below the 0.5% expected rise in sales) – this is the biggest drop since May 2010.

Year-over-year Pending home sales are down 1.7%.

Purchases fell 9 percent in the Northeast, 6.6 percent in the Midwest, 3.9 percent in the South and 1.2 percent in the West.

NAR is desperate to convince home-buyers and sellers that this is nothing but an inventory issue, but it is affordability that is the real driver here.

“There’s little doubt last month’s retreat in contract signings occurred because of woefully low supply levels and the sudden increase in mortgage rates,”Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, said in a statement.

“With the cost of buying a home getting more expensive and not enough inventory, some prospective buyers are either waiting until listings increase come spring or now having to delay their search entirely to save up for a larger down payment.”

So, will higher rates break housing market momentum?

The following chart suggest ‘yes’ – that surge in rates will have a direct impact on home sales (or prices will be forced to adjust lower) as affordability collapses…

And Homebuilder stocks are starting to look a lot less invincible…

As Bloomberg notes, economists consider pending sales a leading indicator because they track contract signings; purchases of existing homes are tabulated when a deal closes, typically a month or two later.

end
Soc Gen reports that the Fed has go it all wrong.  The growth spurt is “already behind us”
(courtesy zerohedge)

SocGen: The Fed Is Wrong, “The Growth Spurt Is Now Behind Us”

Yesterday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell threw markets for a loop when he suggested that the US economy is on the verge of overheating, and that it was performing better than it did during the December FOMC meeting. This prompted a surge in the dollar, and a slump in both Treasurys and stocks.

The narrative immediately shifted: UBS’ chief economist Paul Donovan commented that “Former US Federal Reserve Chair Yellen suggested that there were few systemic risks in the US financial system, but that the current fiscal position was troubling. This is a rather consensus view, but the former Fed chair presumably had access to better information than the consensus. Current Federal Reserve Chair Powell indicated rates should go up” and added that “the broad picture is of a US economy performing at or above trend, justifying four rate hikes this year.

Others quickly chimed in (via Bloomberg):

  • Evercore ISI vice chairman (and former New York Fed official) Krishna Guha: “Had thought the message in March would be 3+3 (three in 2018, three in 2019) with the Committee moving to 4+3 in June once the inflation data had firmed further. Following Powell’s remarks there seems to be a good chance that many or even most FOMC participants will go to 4+3 in March”
  • JPMorgan Chief U.S. Economist Michael Feroli (who remains in the four-rate-hike camp for both 2018 and 2019): “We  now think the odds are tilted slightly in favor of the median participant revising up their outlook to look for four hikes this year and another three hikes next year”
  • Goldman Chief Economist Jan Hatzius: “We agree with the market’s hawkish assessment of Powell’s comments. At this point we see roughly even odds that the median dot will show 3 hikes (2.125%) or 4 hikes (2.375%) for 2018 in March, and we think the median dot for 2019 is likely to move up from 2.7% to 2.875%”

And yet, could Tuesday’s Powell “hawk shock” and the resultant market reaction simply be another instance of driving forward by looking in the rear view mirror. After all, is the economy really that much stronger than it was in December as Powell claimed? One look at the sharp drop in Q1 GDP nowcasts from the Atlanta Fed, which yesterday saw its initial euphoria Q1 GDP forecast slashed by more than half from 5.4% just a few weeks ago to 2.6%, suggests that the US economy is actually slowing.

Economic data confirms this: global economic surprise indices, and especially in the EU and US, have taken a clear turn lower.

And then there was SocGen’s FX strategist Kit Juckes who took the contrarian view to what is rapidly emerging as a “4 hike” consensus, and writes that “it would take a big surprise from US ISM data to avoid a second monthly decline in global PMI measures. That, along with falling economic surprise indices, and signs that at a global level inflationary pressures aren’t noticeably building, fuels the view that the growth spurt at the end of 2017 is now behind us.”

If so, it would have significant consequences for risk assets (higher) and for yields (lower). Here is the key excerpt from his morning note:

The new Fed Chairman sounded upbeat, pushing up expectations of four rate hikes this year. 2-year Note yields reached a new high for this cycle, the dollar is stronger and equity indices are lower across the board.

As Chinese PMI data disappoint, it would take a big surprise from US ISM data to avoid a second monthly decline in global PMI measures. That, along with falling economic surprise indices, and signs that at a global level inflationary pressures aren’t noticeably building, fuels the view that the growth spurt at the end of 2017 is now behind us. The case for fading the long-end Treasury sell-off would seem to be growing.

That would be more important from an FX perspective, of course, if we hadn’t just seen the collapse of yield/currency correlations. Still, there’s a reasonable chance that we now seen a peak in the T-Note/Bund yield spread, which hasn’t quite breached the late 2016 cyclical peaks. EUR/USD 1.21 is the key support level for EUR/USD at the moment and 1.23 is the barrier to further gains, so the range from which a break-out might come is getting narrow. Hopefully that promises more volatility once we do get a break. I think we break up, not down, but time will tell.

Looking at some key correlations, Juckes then notes that the yield differential correlation between the EURUSD and 10Y spreads may be broken but yield spread may turn now….

A few more disappointing data points and we will know if he is right, and if Powell will be regretting his bullish outlook in just a few weeks. With futures in the green, algos seems to already be “pricing in” that it is only a matter of time before bad news is good news (for the S&P at least) all over again.

end
Total student debt now exceeds 1.5 trillion USA dollars.
A great commentary on student debt..
(courtesy zerohedge)

Total Student Debt In America Now Exceeds The Cost Of Iraq War

We’ve all seen the headlines: the cost of university education in the United States has become completely debilitating. And student debt keeps rising to record high levels.

It’s almost commonplace now for a 22-year old to graduate from university with $50,000+ in student debt.

According to data from the Federal Reserve, the total amount of student debt in the United States is now $1.5 trillion.

As SovereignMan.com’s Simon Black notes, that’s more than the estimated $1.3 trillion in direct costs that the government spent fighting the War in Iraq.

What’s probably even more bizarre is that the US government actually owns about 70% of those student loans– a total of $1.06 trillion.

I discovered this over the weekend when I was reviewing the federal government’s recently published financial statements for fiscal year 2017.

Student loans actually constitute the #1 asset of the US federal government, comprising about 30% of its balance sheet.

In other words, young people of America owe more money to the federal government than the value of every tank, every bullet, every aircraft carrier, every acre of land in the national parks.

That’s a pretty sad statement to make.

And remember that student debt in America is a very special kind of debt: it chases you around forever.

Thanks to a piece of legislation signed into law by Bill Clinton in 1998, student debt is almost impossible to ‘discharge’.

So unlike just about every other type of debt like a home mortgage or medical debt, student debt is extremely difficult to wipe away through bankruptcy procedures.

It’s more a form of indentured servitude than it is debt. There’s no escape.

To me, this really calls into question the long-term value of a university education.

Now, there’s a lot of data on this topic, and it’s all over the board.

A 2016 study in the United Kingdom by the Institute of Fiscal Studies, for example, showed that median salaries for graduates at several dozen universities were lower than non-university graduates.

On the other hand, researchers from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York have argued that university graduates will earn, on average, $1 million more over their lifetimes than people who do not graduate from university.

This is what they call the ‘wage premium’ of a university degree.

But even their own data shows that this wage premium is falling.

Another study from the UK’s Warwick University in 2012 calculated that a university graduate’s wage premium had fallen 22% in a decade.

Factoring in the steep cost (and stress) of student loans, university is not an obvious choice anymore.

More importantly, student debt can really limit a young person’s options.

When you’re staring down the barrel of $50,000 owed to the federal government, you don’t have the luxury to take a year off, travel the world, and learn a foreign language.

Or to NOT take a job and start a business.

Or to take a lower paying job where you’ll learn more.

You’re relegated to the first available option that pays down the most debt.

And that certainly has a long-term impact.

And as Mauldin Economics’ Patrick Watson notes, this might be okay if the debt enhanced the student’s financial security, but for millions of Americans, that’s not what has happened.

Borrowers don’t achieve the desired results but remain stuck with the debt anyway.

An Explosion of Delinquent Student Loans

While delinquency rates for other forms of debt fell after the recession, student loans didn’t. As of year-end 2017, about 11% of nearly $1.4 trillion in student debt was at least 90 days delinquent.

It’s actually worse than that.

Roughly half of student debt is held by borrowers who aren’t required to make payments yet. That’s because they are still in school, unemployed, or otherwise excused. Much of that debt would likely be delinquent too.

Also important: The delinquent loans tend to be small (less than $10,000) and held by borrowers who never earned degrees.

These borrowers probably thought they were doing the right thing. They wanted decent jobs and saw that having a college degree was necessary to get one.

So why is college the key to gainful employment? It hasn’t always been so.

It’s because employers require a degree as a job qualification… and that’s partly the fault of IQ tests.

As SovereignMan’s Simon Back concludes, it’s not to say that a university education is a waste of time and money (though an electrical engineering degree is probably a better investment than majoring in ‘18th century lesbian studies’).

The point is that going to university and racking up $50,000 in debt solely for the sake of obtaining a piece of paper is bad idea.

Any investment– especially the one you make in yourself and your education– requires careful thought and planning, you can learn more at www.sovereignacademy.org.

So how did we get here?Patrick Watson explains it all began with so-called ‘unreasonable tests’…

In 1971, the US Supreme Court decided a case called Griggs vs. Duke Power Co. The subject was employment requirements.

Duke’s practice – and many other companies at the time – was to give job applicants an IQ test. Supposedly, this let them hire qualified people, but some companies also used tests to discriminate by race. The 1964 Civil Rights Act banned pre-employment tests that were not “a reasonable measure of job performance.”

The court ruled that Duke’s tests were too broad and not directly related to the jobs performed, which made them illegal.

That left a problem, though. How were employers supposed to evaluate job applicants without illegally discriminating?

Soft Skills

Employers really want to know two different things about prospective workers:

  • First, can this person perform the specific tasks that go with this job? That means operating a machine correctly, carrying boxes of a certain size and weight, writing computer code, etc. You might call these the “hard skills.”
  • Second, there are soft skills. Is this person willing to stick with unpleasant assignments to the end? Will he show up on time? Can she work with others?

Those soft skills are harder to judge but critically important. They’re also what the Supreme Court made hard to test.

College sort of requires those same soft skills. A degree may not give you much useful knowledge, but it shows you have some basic intelligence and literacy. It also shows you will jump through hoops if your organization tells you to. Employers value those qualities.

The Griggs case said nothing about educational requirements. Employers remained free to require high school diplomas or college degrees… and the ruling gave them a big incentive to.

College degrees are convenient, legal substitutes for the kind of testing employers haven’t been able to use since the 1970s. So apart from whatever you learn in college, merely having the credential became necessary to career success.

As a result, everyone in the equation made certain choices.

  • Employers: demand a college degree even for jobs that don’t require college-level skills.
  • Workers: get a college degree even if you must take on debt.
  • Colleges: Raise prices since so many students are begging for degrees.

This made college more expensive, forcing students to borrow more and more money.

Politicians jumped in to promote and guarantee those loans. And here we are. 

College Monopoly

In the Griggs case, the US Supreme Court effectively granted colleges a monopoly. They can discriminate based on a long series of tests that lead to a degree. Employers can’t.

Like most monopolies, this one is inefficient. It creates unpayable debt that burdens students. Some of it eventually falls on taxpayers. Not ideal.

Methods exist to evaluate prospective workers without requiring college degrees, and without racial or other illegal discrimination. But there’s no incentive to try them when you can just screen out the non-college graduates and accomplish the same thing.

Resolving this impasse would help our debt problem and probably our employment problem as well. But the losers would be colleges and educational lenders, so don’t expect them to cooperate, unless someone forces them to.

*  *  *

We live in an era of rapid change… and only those who see and understand the shifting market, economic, and political trends can make wise investment decisions. Macroeconomic forecaster Patrick Watson spots the trends and spells what they mean every week in the free e-letter, Connecting the Dots. Subscribe now for his seasoned insight into the surprising forces driving global markets.

END

The following is a must view video of CNBC interviewing David Stockman where he discusses the 3 skunks:
the big one is of course the 1.2 trillion dollars of new bonds which must be issued for a upcoming yearly deficit plus the 600 billion of bonds rolling off the fed’s balance sheet.
(courtesy CNBC.David Stockman)

Stockman on Jerome Powell Dismissing Recession Concerns: ‘He’s Missing Three Giant Skunks’ – CNBC (02/28/2018)

Posted on February 28, 2018 by wsw staff |

David Stockman appeared on CNBC and warned it’s viewers not to believe everything Jerome Powell says about the economy, but few will listen to his warning.

Video Link

http://www.wallstreetwindow.com/2018/02/stockman- jerome-powell-dismissing-recession-concerns-hes-missing- three-giant-skunks-cnbc-02-28-2018

-END-

SWAMP NEWS
Judge Curiel who handled the case with Trump and his University funding trial has ruled that the Wall can be built over the objections of the State of California
(courtesy  Hanisch/Duran.com)

Trump Border Wall Greenlit By Hispanic “Trump-Hating” California Judge

Authored by Seraphim Hanisch via TheDuran.com,

While media highlighted Trump’s alleged racism, Judge Curiel actually is on record for being pretty impartial and balanced, as Tuesday’s ruling shows…

Judge Gonzalo Curiel, US Federal judge of the Southern District of California, has greenlit the construction of part of President Donald Trump’s border wall with Mexico. This announcement is somewhat of a surprise for the mainstream press, who reported and criticized Trump for being racist in his comments about the judge.

Between the years of 2014 and 2016, Judge Curiel was trying a lawsuit against Trump University, which was being sued for alleged fraud on behalf of three students. At the time of the US Presidential Election, Mr. Trump accused Judge Curiel of being a “Trump hater” during the campaign, and this sort of rhetoric gained a lot of criticism for Candidate Trump as being a racist for saying things like “[Curiel] happens to be, we believe, Mexican, which is great. I think that’s fine…” but also expressing the thought that the judge’s ethnicity would lead him to oppose the matter of US-Mexico border security.

As it turned out, in matters not covered very widely by the press, Judge Curiel actually postponed some court proceedings to avoid a “media frenzy” just before the Presidential election. Further, this was to prevent damage to the impartiality of the jurors in the case. Later, after the election was over, President-elect Trump’s attorneys asked Judge Curiel to delay the case until after the presidential inauguration in 2017. The Judge denied this request, but at the same time, he also urged the suing parties to pursue a settlement, and for that purpose recruited District Judge Jeffrey Miller to facilitate the settlement talks. By November 18th, 2016, all three plaintiffs had agreed to settle, and Curiel certified this decision.

As it has turned out, Judge Curiel has actually been on record as ruling for things in favor or preferable to President Trump’s agenda more than not. Actually, too in June of 2016, Candidate Trump had issued a statement noting that his remarks about Mr. Curiel were misconstrued.

Judge Curiel’s ruling about the border wall was in response to a lawsuit brought by the State of California, arguing that the wall would violate environmental laws. However, the judge’s ruling did not go with the will of the State, and instead has fast-tracked several operations, including the waiver of some 30 building laws and environmental restrictions for the building of prototype walls outside San Diego, and also approval to replace 18 miles of existing barriers.

The US Justice Department hailed the Judge’s ruling on February 27th, emphasizing that border security is an issue of paramount importance.

And in typical fashion, President Trump himself weighed in:

Big legal win today. U.S. judge sided with the Trump Administration and rejected the attempt to stop the government from building a great Border Wall on the Southern Border. Now this important project can go forward!

So, this was probably a bit of a shock for the MSM press, but a welcome victory for the Trump agenda, which appears to be gaining steam as successes begin to build upon one another

end

Trump blasts his Attorney General Sessions for his “disgraceful” investigation into the FISA abuse. Sessions wants the Inspector General to look into the abuse rather than his own justice lawyers

(courtesy zero hedge)

Trump Blasts Sessions “Disgraceful” Investigation Into FISA Abuses

After a months-long detente between President Trump and his attorney general, former Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, it appears tensions between the two men are flaring up once again.

Trump supplied one of his harshest rebukes of Sessions in a mid-morning tweet, castigating him for asking the Inspector General – an “Obama guy”, according to Trump – to “investigate potentially massive FISA abuse”.

Trump said the investigation will “take forever, has no prosecutorial power and already late with reports on Comey etc. Isn’t the IG an Obama guy? Why not use Justice Department lawyers? DISGRACEFUL!”

Why is A.G. Jeff Sessions asking the Inspector General to investigate potentially massive FISA abuse. Will take forever, has no prosecutorial power and already late with reports on Comey etc. Isn’t the I.G. an Obama guy? Why not use Justice Department lawyers? DISGRACEFUL!

Sessions announced yesterday afternoon that the DOJ would investigate potential abuses of FISA. At time, it wasn’t clear whether Sessions had signed off on a formal investigation, but he did say that the DOJ’s inspector general would take it up, per the Hill.

Sessions similarly said on Fox News on Sunday that his department would look into the process for obtaining warrants under FISA.

Sessions reportedly offered to resign last Spring amid criticism from the president over Sessions’ decision to recuse himself from overseeing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. Sessions was famously the first Republican senator to embrace Trump’s then-long-shot campaign.

end

the war of words between Sessions and Trump escalate. It sure seems that Sessions is a me

(courtesy

AG Sessions Responds To Trump’s Twitter Taunt

It looks like all those Saturday Night Live sketches portraying Jeff Sessions as an obsequious diminutive imp have gotten to the attorney general.

In a stiffly-worded response to President Trump – who earlier today castigated the AG for ordering the Justice Department’s inspector general, an Obama-era holdover, to investigate FISA abuses – Sessions defended his handling of the FISA investigation by saying he followed the “appropriate process” by ordering the IG to investigate and that, as long as he remains attorney general, he will “continue to discharge my duties with integrity and honor.”

AG SESSIONS STATEMENT: “We have initiated the appropriate process that will ensure complaints against this Department will be fully and fairly acted upon if necessary….” (1/2) https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/968856971075051521 

AG SESSIONS STATEMENT CT’D: “As long as I am the Attorney General, I will continue to discharge my duties with integrity and honor, and this Department will continue to do its work in a fair and impartial manner according to the law and Constitution. “ (2/2) https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/968856971075051521 

Of course, as one twitter user reminds us, Senate Republicans have said they will not confirm another AG nominee if Sessions is forced out.

“Step Down Jeff Sessions”…Should Be Every Republicans Demand…Enough With This Traitor SOB…I Can Only Assume He’s A Gang Member “DS”

Senate Republicans have already stated they will not confirm another AG nominee if Sessions is fired or forced out.

The statement elicited a wave of incredulous responses from twitter users, who were surprised by Sessions’ strongly worded response.

The statement is a remarkable public response from Sessions to another critical comment from President Trump directed at him and the Justice Department

His response begs the question: Will their spat end here? Or will we soon hear from a (no doubt infuriated) Trump?

end

Another big joke:  Mueller probing what Trump knew about the hacked DNC emails. Another ‘nothingburger”

(courtesy zerohedge)

Mueller Probing What Trump Knew About Hacked DNC Emails

Robert Mueller’s investigation is now asking witnesses what Donald Trump may have known about whether Democratic emails had been stolen before it was publicly known, and whether he was involved in their release – according to the latest leak out of the Special Counsel, from “multiple people familiar with the probe.”

In one line of questioning, investigators have focused on Trump’s public comments in July 2016 asking Russia to find emails that were deleted by his then-opponent Hillary Clinton from a private server she maintained while secretary of state. The comments came at a news conference on July 27, 2016, just days after WikiLeaks began publishing the Democratic National Committee emails. “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” Trump said. –NBC

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer would later say that Trump had been “joking” when he called on Russia to hack Clinton’s emails.

Witnesses have apparently been asked whether Trump himself knew that Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, had been targeted – and whether or not Trump was advised to comment on Hillary’s emails from someone outside the campaign, and whether he was involved in their strategic release.

The line of questioning suggests the special counsel, who is tasked with examining whether there was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election, is looking into possible coordination between WikiLeaks and Trump associates in disseminating the emails, which U.S. intelligence officials say were stolen by Russia.

Trump has repeatedly denied any collusion.

Mueller’s investigators are also asking witnesses about Trump’s relationship between GOP operative Roger Stone and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Russian business ties

Previously, CNN reported that Mueller’s team has begun interviewing witnesses over President Trump’s business activities in Russia prior to the 2016 presidential campaign, according to three sources “familiar with the matter.”

Yes – after indicting Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort and Rick Gates over a money laundering scheme that had nothing to do with the Trump campaign, and 13 Russian nationals from a Russian troll farm which employed “90 people with a shaky grasp of English and a rudimentary understanding of U.S. politics shitposting on Facebook” – which also had nothing to do with the Trump campaign, it’s curious that Mueller’s team – whose mandate is to investigate Trump’s alleged ties to Russia, would just now start interviewing people over the President’s business activities in Russia.

Questions to some witnesses during wide-ranging interviews included the timing of Trump’s decision to seek the presidency, potentially compromising information the Russians may have had about him, and why efforts to brand a Trump Tower in Moscow fell through, two sources said.

The lines of inquiry indicate Mueller’s team is reaching beyond the campaign to explore how the Russians might have sought to influence Trump at a time when he was discussing deals in Moscow and contemplating a presidential run. –CNN

Buried per usual in the CNN report is the “nothingburger” part of the story. Namely: “Two of the sources said they do not know from the questions asked whether Mueller has concrete evidence to indicate wrongdoing,” and “You ask everything even if you don’t think it’s credible,” one of the sources said, adding, “the allegations are out there, and it was checking the box.”

Furthermore, This witness was also asked whether Russians had been seen in the office at Trump Tower New York prior to 2015. The answer was no.

Beauty pageant

AHA! But wait! Trump held the 2013 Miss Universe pageant in Moscow – where he discussed potentially “building a tower” with his partners in the pageant; Aras Agalarov and his son, Emin Agalarov. 

The plans for the tower fell through – however Emin Agalarov’s publicist Rob Goldstone – a Fusion GPS associate, arranged the infamous “Trump Tower” meeting between Donald Trump Jr., a Russian attorney (also a Fusion GPS associate – who hates Trump), and several other individuals. The meeting was pitched as a discussion on adoption, with the assertion made that Russia had opposition research on Hillary Clinton (when in fact Kremlin officials helped fabricate opposition research on Trump).

Rob Goldstone, Donald Trump Jr., Natalia Veselnitskaya

Fusion GPS is of course the opposition research firm paid by Hillary Clinton and the DNC to compile the anti-Trump “dossier” assembled by former UK spy Christopher Steele.

So to unwind all of that; the implication in the CNN article is that Trump’s affiliation with a Moscow businessman during the 2013 Miss Universe pageant is the “putin puppet” connection – despite discussions for a Moscow Trump Tower falling through. Then, the publicist for said Moscow businessman’s son – Rob Goldstone, screwed the Trump team over with the Trump tower meeting which would later be used to implicate the campaign in an intricate Russian collusion plot.

It should also be noted that Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson met with Natalia Veselnitskaya hours before the Trump Tower meeting, and also met with Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta the day after the 34-page dossier was published by BuzzFeed. Glenn gets around.

Perhaps this is why Mueller is just now getting around to Trump’s business dealings in Moscow, which any idiot can trace back to the Trump team being set up by Fusion GPS, the Clinton campaign and the U.S. intel community six ways from Sunday.

end

I will  see you THURSDAY night

HARVEY

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One comment

  1. manxeconomics · · Reply

    Excellent work Harvey, thank you. I have just started my own blog about gold and financial markets (manipulation).

    Best wishes, Edward

    Like

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