APRIL 17/DESPITE CONTINUAL BANKER WHACKING OF OUR PRECIOUS METALS, SILVER RISES BY 10 CENTS AND GOLD DOWN ONLY $1.00/GOLD COMEX ANOTHER STRONG 9700 CONTRACT ISSUANCE/SILVER COMEX WITNESSES BANKER SHORT COVERING/CHINA’S ECONOMIC SCENE IS NOT GOOD AS THE LATEST DATA WAS NOT GOOD/GERMAN ZEW CONFIDENCE LEVELS ALSO ON THE WAIN/FAMED UK REPORTER ROBERT FISK STATES THAT THERE WAS NO CHEMICAL ATTACK WHEN HE VISITED THE SITE!!/.MORE SWAMP STORIES FOR YOU TONIGHT/

 

 

GOLD: $1346.90  DOWN $ 1.00  (COMEX TO COMEX CLOSINGS)

Silver: $16.78 UP 10 CENTS (COMEX TO COMEX CLOSINGS)

Closing access prices:

Gold $1347.50

silver: $16.78

For comex gold:

APRIL/

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR APRIL CONTRACT:0 NOTICE(S) FOR nil OZ.

TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR 663 FOR 66300 OZ (2.062 tonnes)

THE COMEX IS OUT OF GOLD

For silver:

APRIL

115 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR

575,000 OZ/

Total number of notices filed so far this month: 379 for 1,895,000 oz

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Bitcoin: BID $8039/OFFER $8139: up $32(morning)

Bitcoin: BID/ $7862/offer 7962: DOWN $146  (CLOSING/5 PM)

 

end

I will be reporting on the Shanghai gold fix as I can now attest to it’s accuracy:

First Shanghai gold fix comes at 10 pm est

The second Shanghai gold fix:  2:15 pm

TOMORROW I WILL PROVIDE BOTH FIXES.

Second gold fix early this morning:1353.83

USA gold at the exact same time:  1346.60

PREMIUM TO NY SPOT:  $7.23

AGAIN, SHANGHAI REJECTS NEW YORK PRICING.

WE WILL NOT PROVIDE LONDON FIXES AS THEY ARE NOT ACCURATE AS TO WHAT IS GOING ON AT THE SAME TIME FRAME.

Let us have a look at the data for today

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

In silver, the total OPEN INTEREST SURPRISINGLY FELL AGAIN  BY A CONSIDERABLE  3817 CONTRACTS FROM  217,817  FALLING TO 214,000  DESPITE YESTERDAY’S 7 CENT RISE IN SILVER PRICING.  WE AGAIN HAD CONSIDERABLE COMEX LIQUIDATION  AND FOR SURE BANK SHORTCOVERING AT THE COMEX. WE WERE AGAIN NOTIFIED THAT WE HAD A SMALL SIZED  NUMBER OF COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP :  555 EFP’S FOR MAY AND 207 FOR JULY AND ZERO FOR ALL  OTHER MONTHS  AND THEREFORE TOTAL ISSUANCE OF 762 CONTRACTS.   WITH THE TRANSFER OF 762 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 24-48 HRS IN THE ISSUING OF EFP’S. THE 768 EFP CONTRACTS TRANSLATES INTO 3.810 MILLION OZ  ACCOMPANYING THE RISE IN  SILVER PRICE AT THE COMEX AND THE STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR APRIL COMEX DELIVERY.

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

33,744 CONTRACTS (FOR 12 TRADING DAYS TOTAL 33,744 CONTRACTS) OR 168.720 MILLION OZ: AVERAGE PER DAY: 2,812 CONTRACTS OR 14.060 MILLION OZ/DAY

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH:  168.720 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON. THIS REPRESENTS AROUND 24.10% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION (EX CHINA EX RUSSIA)

ACCUMULATION IN YEAR 2018 TO DATE SILVER EFP’S887.205 MILLION OZ.

ACCUMULATION FOR JAN 2018:                        236.879 MILLION OZ

ACCUMULATION FOR FEB 2018:                        244.95 MILLION OZ

ACCUMULATION FOR MARCH 2018:                236.67 MILLION OZ

RESULT: WE HAD A CONSIDERABLE SIZED LOSS IN COMEX OI SILVER COMEX OF 3817  DESPITE THE 7 CENT GAIN IN SILVER PRICE. WE MUST HAVE HAD SOME SHORTCOVERING BY THE BANKERS AS A SMALL AMOUNT OF THE LOST COMEX OPEN INTEREST LANDED IN LONDON AS FORWARDS.  THE CME NOTIFIED US THAT WE HAD A SMALL SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 762 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 (SEE COMEX DATA) . FROM THE CME DATA 535  EFP’S  FOR THE  MONTH OF MAY AND 207 EFP CONTRACTS FOR JULY,  WERE ISSUED FOR  A DELIVERABLE FORWARD CONTRACT OVER IN LONDON WITH A FIAT BONUS.    WE LOST  3055 OI CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: i.e. 762 open interest contracts headed for London (EFP’s) TOGETHER WITH AN DECREASE OF 3817  OI COMEX CONTRACTS. AND ALL OF THIS HAPPENED WITH THE RISE IN PRICE OF SILVER OF 7 CENTS AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $16.68 WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING. YET WE STILL HAVE A GOOD AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX FOR DELIVERY IN THIS NON ACTIVE APRIL DELIVERY  MONTH.

In ounces AT THE COMEX, the OI is still represented by WELL OVER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 1.070 BILLION TO BE EXACT or 152% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).

FOR THE NEW FRONT APRIL MONTH/ THEY FILED: 115 NOTICE(S) FOR 575,000 OZ OF SILVER

IN SILVER, WE HAVE NOW SET THE NEW RECORD OF OPEN INTEREST AT 243,411 AND AGAIN THIS HAS BEEN SET WITH A LOW PRICE OF $16.51  ON APRIL 9.2018.

ON THE DEMAND SIDE WE HAVE THE FOLLOWING:

  1. HUGE AMOUNTS OF SILVER STANDING FOR DELIVERY  (MARCH 27 MILLION OZ AND APRIL 1.8 MILLION OZ)
  2. HUGE RECORD OPEN INTEREST IN SILVER  243,411 CONTRACTS (OR 1.217 BILLION OZ/ SET APRIL 9/2018
  3. HUGE ANNUAL EFP’S ISSUANCE EQUAL TO 2.9 BILLION OZ OR 400% OF SILVER ANNUAL PRODUCTION

AND YET WE HAVE A CONTINUAL LOW PRICE OF SILVER DESPITE THE ABOVE HUGE DEMAND.  TO ME THE ONLY ANSWER IS THAT WE HAVE SOVEREIGN  (CHINA) WHO IS ENDEAVOURING TO GOBBLE UP ALL AVAILABLE PHYSICAL SILVER NO MATTER WHERE, EXACTLY WHAT J.P.MORGAN IS DOING. AND IT IS MY BELIEF THAT J.P.MORGAN IS HOLDING ITS SILVER FOR ITS BENEFICIAL OWNER..THE USA GOVERNMENT WHO IN TURN IS HOLDING THAT SILVER FOR CHINA.(FOR A SILVER LOAN REPAYMENT). IT ALSO LOOKS LIKE BANKER CAPITULATION IN SILVER AS THEY STRUGGLE TO REMOVE SOME OF THEIR HUGE OBLIGATIONS.

In gold, the open interest  ROSE BY AN FAIR SIZED 2699 CONTRACTS UP TO 509,128 WITH THE SMALL GAIN IN PRICE/YESTERDAY’S TRADING ( RISE OF $2.80) WE ARE NOW IN THE ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF APRIL. THE CME RELEASED THE DATA FOR EFP ISSUANCE AND IT TOTALED A STRONG SIZED 9736 CONTRACTS :   JUNE SAW THE ISSUANCE OF 9736 CONTRACTS , MAY SAW THE ISSUANCE OF 0 CONTRACTS  AND ALL OTHER MONTHS ZERO.  The new OI for the gold complex rests at 509,823. 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  AND WE ARE WITNESSING DELAYS IN ACTUAL DELIVERIES.

IN ESSENCE WE HAVE A GOOD SIZED  OI GAIN IN CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES 2699 OI CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX AND AN STRONG  SIZED 9736 EFP OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON.THUS  TOTAL OI GAIN: 12,435 CONTRACTS OR 1,243,500 OZ38.678 TONNES.

YESTERDAY, WE HAD 10,403  EFP’S ISSUED.

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S GOLD AT J.P. MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES: (EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF APRIL : 130,927 CONTRACTS OR 13,092,700  OZ OR 407.23 TONNES (12 TRADING DAYS AND THUS AVERAGING: 10,910 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY OR 1,091,000 OZ/ TRADING DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :   SO FAR THIS MONTH IN 12 TRADING DAYS IN  TONNES: 407.23 TONNES

TOTAL ANNUAL GOLD PRODUCTION, 2017, THROUGHOUT THE WORLD EX CHINA EX RUSSIA: 2555 TONNES

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS 407.23/2550 x 100% TONNES =  15.96% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION SO FAR IN MARCH ALONE.*** THE ACCUMULATION OF EFP CONTRACTS IS RISING PER MONTH.

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S YEAR 2018 TO DATE 2,451.17 TONNES

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

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S FOR FEBRUARY 2018:         649.45 TONNES

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S FOR MARCH 2018:                741.89 TONNES

WHAT IS ALARMING TO ME, ACCORDING TO OUR LONDON EXPERT ANDREW MAGUIRE IS THAT THESE EFP’S ARE BEING TRANSFERRED TO WHAT ARE CALLED SERIAL FORWARD CONTRACT OBLIGATIONS AND THESE CONTRACTS ARE LESS THAN 14 DAYS.  ANYTHING GREATER THAN 14 DAYS, THESE MUST BE RECORDED AND SENT TO THE COMPTROLLER, GREAT BRITAIN TO MONITOR RISK TO THE BANKING SYSTEM.  IF THIS IS INDEED TRUE, THEN THIS IS A MASSIVE CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD AS WE NOW WITNESS A MONSTROUS TOTAL EFP’S ISSUANCE AS IT HEADS INTO THE STRATOSPHERE

Result: A FAIR SIZED INCREASE IN OI AT THE COMEX OF 2699 WITH THE RISE IN PRICE // GOLD TRADING YESTERDAY ($2.80 GAIN). HOWEVER, WE HAD A STRONG SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONG TRANSFERRING TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 9736 CONTRACTS AS THESE HAVE ALREADY BEEN NEGOTIATED AND CONFIRMED.   THERE OBVIOUSLY DOES NOT SEEM TO BE MUCH PHYSICAL GOLD AT THE COMEX.  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 9736 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED, WE HAD A GOOD SIZED NET GAIN OF 12,435 CONTRACTS IN TOTAL OPEN INTEREST  ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 

9736 CONTRACTS MOVE TO LONDON AND 2699 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX. (in tonnes, the GAIN in total oi equates to 40.83 TONNES).

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

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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

GLD

WITH GOLD DOWN  $1.00 :  WE HAD NO  CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/

Inventory rests tonight: 865.89 tonnes.

SLV/

WITH SILVER UP 10 CENTS TODAY: NO  CHANGES/ 

/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ/

end

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

1. Today, we had the open interest in SILVER FELL BY A CONSIDERABLE 3817 CONTRACTS from 217,817 DOWN TO 214,000 (AND AWAY FROM THE  NEW COMEX RECORD SET YESTERDAY/APRIL 9/2017). THE PREVIOUS RECORD OTHER THAN WAS ESTABLISHED AT: 234,787, SET ON APRIL 21.2017 ALMOST ONE YEAR AGO.  THE PRICE OF SILVER ON THAT DAY: $17.89.

 THE RATHER LARGE COMEX LOSS OF 3817 CONTRACTS, OCCURRED DESPITE THE RISE IN PRICE OF SILVER (7 CENTS//). THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST HAS FALLEN FOR 6 CONSECUTIVE DAYS.  HOWEVER  OUR BANKERS ALSO USED THEIR EMERGENCY PROCEDURE TO ISSUE ANOTHER 555 EFP CONTRACTS FOR MAY  (WE DO NOT GET A LOOK AT THESE CONTRACTS AS IT IS PRIVATE BUT THE CFTC DOES AUDIT THEM) AND 207 EFP’S FOR JULY AND ALL OTHER MONTHS ZERO. TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE:  762 CONTRACTS. EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON.  IF WE TAKE THE  OI LOSS AT THE COMEX OF 3817 CONTRACTS TO THE 762 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S, WE OBTAIN A SMALL NET LOSS 3055 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS.  THUS IN OUNCES, THE LOSS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:  15.275 MILLION OZ!!! AND THIS OCCURRED WITH A RISE IN PRICE OF 7 CENTS.  THE BANKERS ARE CAPITULATING AS THEY DESPERATELY TRY AND PARE THEIR GIGANTIC OPEN INTEREST SHORT.

RESULT: A LARGE SIZED DECREASE IN SILVER OI AT THE COMEX DESPITE THE RISE IN SILVER PRICING / YESTERDAY (7 CENTS/) . BUT WE ALSO HAD ANOTHER SMALL SIZED 762 EFP’S ISSUED TRANSFERRING COMEX LONGS OVER TO LONDON. TOGETHER WITH THE STRONG  SIZED AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR APRIL, DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL SILVER INTENSIFIES AS WE WITNESS SEVERE BACKWARDATION IN SILVER IN LONDON.

(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)TUESDAY MORNING/MONDAY NIGHT: Shanghai closed DOWN 43.85 POINTS OR 1.41%  /Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 252.84 POINTS OR 0.83%   / The Nikkei closed UP 12.06 POINTS OR 0.06%/Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP .02% /Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed UP at 6.2834/Oil DOWN to 66.69 dollars per barrel for WTI and 71.81 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED IN THE RED    .   ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AT 6.2834 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.2773 /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING  A LITTLE STRONGER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /CHINA RETALIATES WITH TARIFFS/ TRUMP RESPONDS TO NEW TARIFFS AND IT NOW LOOKS LIKE A FULL TRADE WAR IS BEGINNING/

SOUTH KOREA/NORTH KOREA

 

i)North Korea/South Korea

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

3 c CHINA

i)USA is now planning a 3rd front into its attack on China.  China does not allow USA firms to compete in China unless they find a joint venture partner of Chinese origin. Basically Chinese high technology is off limits to the USA and Trump is planning to remedy this:

(courtesy zerohedge)

ii)Two major points this morning:

  1. Chinese Macro data huge disappoints which sends their stocks markets into a tailspin
  2. China is now threatening retaliation for the ban of high tech equipment from the uSA to China’s big telecom company ZTE.  It seems that these guys were selling their chips to Iran.

(courtesy zerohedge)

iii)Trump not going to like this as China is doing exactly what it has been accused of: manipulating its currency as China reduces its RRR by i% and thus providing more liquidity to their banking system

( zerohedge)

iv)China, true to form and carrying on its trade war with the USA announces a huge 179% tariff on USA Sorghum used in animal feed.

( zerohedge)

4. EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

i)ISRAEL/IRAN/SYRIA

Now we know what happened last week when we were informed of a massive explosion last Monday inside the T4 air base.  At the time nobody claimed responsibility.  Once the Americans categorically stated that they had nothing to do with the hit, all eyes turned on Israel..and sure enough they admitted the attack today.

The question was why they targeted an Iranian drone base.   Israel now state that Iran sent over a drone into Israeli soil carrying explosives and this drone was shot down. This is the very first confrontation between Iran and Israel directly and no through proxies.

thus the reason for the attack on live Iranian targets inside Syria..this will escalate!

( zerohedge)

ii)This is big:  Robert Fisk, famed war reporter for the UK Independent now reached his conclusion after visiting the Syrian chemical gas attack that  the Syrians inside East Ghouta were not gassed.

(courtesy zerohedge)

iii)This is interesting:  The Russians find a chemical weapons lab right inside the rebel held section of Douma.  The USA side states that the Russians have somehow hid this…do not make this up

(courtesy zerohedge)

6 .GLOBAL ISSUES

The IMF warns of huge risks to the system:

( zerohedge)

7. OIL ISSUES

8. EMERGING MARKET

9. PHYSICAL MARKETS

i)Surprising China increases its USA treasuries despite trade tensions due to the tariff war

(Wigglesworth/London’s Financial times)

ii)We knew that this would happen:  Venezuela’s oil workers are now requesting payment in dollars for their wages

(courtesy Bloomberg)

iii)Mac Slavo reports why Eastern Central banks and one major bullion bank (JPMorgan) is stockpiling physical gold and silver

( Mac Slavo SHTFPlan.com)

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

i)USA MORNING DATA

Although housing starts and permits rebound in March the general 2018 housing scene is not very promising;

( zerohedge)

ii)Industrial production rises better than expected at .5% MONTH/MONTH but that was due to a huge rise in utility usage because of the cold weather.  Everything else was down
( zerohedge)
iii)Amazing: 24 hours later Kudlow denies the Washington Post story of no new additional Russian sanctions. Kudlow states that here are more Russian sanctions under consideration
(courtesy zerohedge)

iv)David Stockman talks about the failed Empire first American policy:

(courtesy David Stockman/ContraCorner)

b)Trump is very worried about what is seized in the Cohen raid

( zerohedge)

Let us head over to the comex:

The total gold comex open interest ROSE BY AN SMALL SIZED 2699 CONTRACTS UP to an OI level 509,128 WITH THE RISE IN THE PRICE OF GOLD ($2.80 GAIN/ YESTERDAY’S TRADING).   FOR TWO YEARS STRAIGHT WE HAVE NOTICED THAT ONE WEEK PRIOR TO FIRST DAY NOTICE OF AN ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS AND EFP’S NOTICES EXPONENTIALLY INCREASE.   THE CME REPORTS THAT  THE BANKERS ISSUED A HUGE SIZED  COMEX TRANSFER THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE AS THESE LONGS RECEIVED A DELIVERABLE LONDON FORWARD TOGETHER WITH A FIAT BONUS. WE HAD 9736 FOR  JUNE, 0 CONTRACTS ISSUED FOR MAY AND ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS:  TOTAL  9736 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 BASED FORWARD.

ON A NET BASIS IN OPEN INTEREST WE GAINED THE FOLLOWING TODAY ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES: 12,435 OI CONTRACTS IN THAT 9736 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE GAINED 2699 COMEX CONTRACTS.

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 12,435 contracts OR 1,243,500  OZ OR 38.678 TONNES.

Result: A LARGE SIZED INCREASE IN COMEX OPEN INTEREST WITH THE RISE IN PRICE YESTERDAY  (ENDING UP WITH A GAIN OF $2.80)THE  TOTAL OPEN INTEREST GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 12,435 OI CONTRACTS..

We have now entered the  active contract month of APRIL where we LOST 16 contracts LOWERING TO  1288 contracts.  We had 3 notices served  yesterday, so we lost 13  contracts or an additional 1300 oz will not stand for delivery in this active delivery month of April and these lost contracts JOIN THEIR BROTHERS AS THEY MORPH INTO EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL CONTRACTS (EFP’S) ONCE THEY HAVE BEEN NEGOTIATED, WRITTEN UP AND SEALED. (i.e. London based forwards)

May saw A GAIN of 2 contracts to stand at 1226. The really big June contract month saw a GAIN of 3039 contracts DOWN to 382,743 contracts.   The next big delivery month after June is August and here the OI ROSE BY 118 contracts UP to 48,865.

We had 0 notice(s) filed upon today for  NIL oz at the comex

THERE IS NO QUESTION THAT THE COMEX DOES NOT HAVE ANY  GOLD TO SATISFY UPON OUR LONGS.

Trading Volumes on the COMEX

PRELIMINARY COMEX VOLUME FOR TODAY:265,609  contracts

CONFIRMED COMEX VOL. FOR YESTERDAY: 277,452 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:

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

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
And now for the wild silver comex results.

Total silver OI FELL AGAIN BY 3817 CONTRACTS FROM 217,817 DOWN TO 214,000 (AND AWAY FROM THE NEW RECORD OI FOR SILVER SET APRIL 9.2018)  DESPITE THE 7 CENT RISE IN SILVER PRICING.  HOWEVER, WE  ALSO WERE ALSO INFORMED THAT WE HAD A SMALL 693 EMERGENCY EFP’S FOR MAY ISSUED BY OUR BANKERS: 75 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED FOR JULY 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: 762.  WE SURPRISINGLY AND SHOCKINGLY AGAIN HAD CONTINUAL LONG COMEX SILVER LIQUIDATION.   ON A NET BASIS WE LOST 3055 SILVER OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS AS WE OBTAINED A 3817 CONTRACT LOSS AT THE COMEX COMBINING WITH THE ADDITION OF 762 OI CONTRACTS NAVIGATING OVER TO LONDON.

NET LOSS  ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:3055 CONTRACTS 

AMOUNT STANDING FOR SILVER AT THE COMEX

We are now in the non active delivery month of April and here the front month LOST 5 contracts FALLING TO  211 contracts.  We had 120 notices filed upon  so in essence we GAINED 115 contracts or 575,000 additional ounces of silver will  stand for delivery in this non active delivery month of April AS SOMEBODY WAS IN URGENT NEED OF SILVER.

The next big active delivery month for silver will be May and here the OI LOST 6690 contracts DOWN to 98,037. June saw a LOSS of 4 contracts to stand at 95.  The next big delivery month for silver is July and here the OI ROSE by 3057 contracts UP to 78,855.

We had 115 notice(s) filed for 575,000 OZ for the APRIL 2018 contract for silver

INITIAL standings for APRIL/GOLD

APRIL 17/2018.

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 OZ
No of oz served (contracts) today
0 notice(s)
 NIL OZ
No of oz to be served (notices)
1288 contracts
(128,800 oz)
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
663 notices
66,300 OZ
2.062 TONNES
Total accumulative withdrawals of gold from the Dealers inventory this month NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of gold from the Customer inventory this month xxx oz
 from the last week of March til today, we have had only 4 small entries for gold and they were all of the “kilobars” variety
From my vantage point, the comex is void of gold.  This rarely happens in a delivery month as gold is called upon to deliver.
***
we had 0 kilobar transaction/
We had 0 inventory movement at the dealer accounts
total inventory deposit into the dealer accounts:  NIL  oz
total inventory withdrawals out of dealer accounts; nil oz
we had 0 withdrawals out of the customer account:
we had 0 customer deposit
total customer deposits: nil oz
we had 0 adjustment(s)

For APRIL:
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.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To calculate the INITIAL total number of gold ounces standing for the APRIL. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (663) x 100 oz or 66300 oz, to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of APRIL. (1288 contracts) minus the number of notices served upon today (0 x 100 oz per contract) equals 195,100 oz, the number of ounces standing in this active month of APRIL (6.068 tonnes)

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

No of notices served (660 x 100 oz or ounces + {(1288)OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (0 x 100 oz )which equals 195,100 oz standing in this  active delivery month of APRIL . THERE IS 12.003 TONNES OF REGISTERED GOLD AVAILABLE FOR DELIVERY SO FAR.

WE LOST 13 COMEX OI CONTRACTS OR 1300 OZ OF GOLD WILL NOT STAND BUT  THESE GUYS  MORPHED INTO LONDON BASED FORWARDS.

total registered or dealer gold:  385,923.014 oz or 12.003 tonnes
total registered and eligible (customer) gold;   9,051,749.97 oz 281.547 tones
THE COMEX IS AGAIN IN STRESS AS ONLY 12.003 TONNES OF GOLD ARE LEFT TO SERVICE DELIVERIES. THERE IS HARDLY ANY GOLD AT THE COMEX TO SERVE UPON LONGS AND THUS THE REASON FOR THE EFP TRANSFER OVER TO LONDON.

IN THE LAST 18 MONTHS 72 NET TONNES HAS LEFT THE COMEX.

end

And now for silver

AND NOW THE APRIL DELIVERY MONTH

APRIL INITIAL standings/SILVER

APRIL 17/ 2018
Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
 605,295.100
JPMORGAN
  oz
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
NIL
oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory
  NIL oz
No of oz served today (contracts)
115
CONTRACT(S
575,000 OZ)
No of oz to be served (notices)
96 contracts
(480,000 oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts) 379 contracts

(1,895,000 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 0 inventory movement at the dealer side of things

total dealer deposits:  nil oz

we had 0 deposits into the customer account

i) Into JPMorgan: nil oz

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

JPMorgan now has 140 million oz of  total silver inventory or 53.4% of all official comex silver. (140 million/263 million)

JPMorgan did not  deposit  into its warehouses (official) today.

ii) INTO EVERYBODY ELSE:  ZERO OZ

total deposits today: ZERO  oz

we had 1 withdrawals from the customer account;

i) out of JPMorgan; 605,295.100 oz

total withdrawals;  605,295.100   oz

we had 0 adjustment

total dealer silver:  61.363 million

total dealer + customer silver:  263.191 million oz

The total number of notices filed today for the APRIL. contract month is represented by 115 contract(s) FOR 575,000 oz. To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in APRIL., we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at 379 x 5,000 oz = 1,895,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of April. (211) and the number of notices served upon today (115 x 5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

.

Thus the INITIAL standings for silver for the APRIL contract month: 379(notices served so far)x 5000 oz + OI for front month of April(211) -number of notices served upon today (115)x 5000 oz equals 2,275,000 oz of silver standing for the April contract month 

WE GAINED 115  SILVER CONTRACT OR 575,000 ADDITIONAL OUNCES WILL STAND IN THIS NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF APRIL AS SOMEBODY WAS IN URGENT NEED OF PHYSICAL SILVER.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

ESTIMATED VOLUME FOR TODAY: 96,979 CONTRACTS

CONFIRMED VOLUME FOR YESTERDAY: 92,910 CONTRACTS

YESTERDAY’S CONFIRMED VOLUME OF 92,910 CONTRACTS EQUATES TO  464 MILLION OZ OR 66.3% 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 -1.92% (APRIL 17/2018)
2. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV RISES TO -0.51% to NAV (APRIL 17/2018 )
Note: Sprott silver trust back into NEGATIVE territory at -1.92%-/Sprott physical gold trust is back into NEGATIVE/ territory at -0.51%/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 -2.40%: NAV 13.90/TRADING 13.58//DISCOUNT 2.42.

END

And now the Gold inventory at the GLD/

APRIL 17/WITH GOLD DOWN $1.00 NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 865.89 TONNES/

April 16/WITH GOLD UP$2.80/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 865.89 TONNES/

April 13/WITH GOLD UP $6.15, A HUGE DEPOSIT OF 5.90 TONNES INTO THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 865.89 TONNES

April 12/WITH GOLD DOWN $17.40/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 859.99 TONNES

April 11/WITH GOLD UP $13.85/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 859,99 TONNES

APRIL 10/WITH GOLD UP $5.25/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 859.99 TONNES

APRIL 9/WITH GOLD UP$4.50/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 859.99 TONNES

APRIL 6/WITH GOLD UP $7.50 ,A HUGE CHANGE IN INVENTORY AT THE GLD/ A DEPOSIT OF 5.90 TONNES/INVENTORY RESTS AT 859.99 TONNES

APRIL 5/WITH GOLD DOWN $8.20 WE HAD TWO ENTRIES: 1) TINY WITHDRAWAL OF .28 TONNES TO PAY FOR FEES AND 2) A DEPOSIT OF 2.06 TONNES//INVENTORY RESTS AT 854.09 TONNES

April 4/WITH GOLD UP $2.90 WE HAD NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 852.31 TONNES

APRIL 3./WITH GOLD DOWN $9.30 WE HAD NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 852.31 TONNES

APRIL 2/WITH GOLD UP $19.50, WE HAD A BIG  CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD A DEPOSIT OF 6.19 TONNES/INVENTORY RESTS AT 852.31 TONNES

MARCH 29/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.20 AND OPTIONS EXPIRY FINISHED, WE HAD NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS A 846.12 TONNES

March 28/WITH GOLD DOWN $16.70, ANOTHER RAID ORCHESTRATED, AGAIN NO SURPRISES AS WE WITNESS ANOTHER 1.18 TONNES OF GOLD REMOVED/INVENTORY RESTS AT 846.12 TONNES

MARCH 27/WITH GOLD DOWN $11.70 AND A RAID INITIATED, IT WAS NO SURPRISE TO SEE THAT A MASSIVE WITHDRAWAL OF 3.24 TONNES WAS USED IN THE ABOVE RAID/INVENTORY RESTS AT 847.30 TONNES

MARCH 26./WITH GOLD UP $4.60/NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 850.54 TONNES

MARCH 23/WITH GOLD UP $23.30/NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 850.54 TONNES

MARCH 22.WITH GOLD UP $5.90, NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 850.54 TONNES/

MARCH 21/WITH GOLD UP $9.65 NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 850.54 TONNES

March 20/WITH GOLD DOWN $5.75, A SURPRISING HUMONGOUS DEPOSIT OF 10.32 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 850.64 TONNES/

SO FAR, FOR THE MONTH OF MARCH, THE GLD HAS ADDED 19.61 TONNES WITH A NET LOSS OF $17.45

March 19/WITH GOLD UP $5.25: ANOTHER HUGE DEPOSIT OF GOLD TO THE TUNE OF 2.07 TONNES/GOLD INVENTORY RESTS TONIGHT AT 840.22 TONNES

MARCH 16/WITH GOLD DOWN $5.65/OUR CROOKS DEPOSITED ANOTHER 4.42 TONNES INTO GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 838.15 TONNES

FOR THE WEEK: GOLD LOST  $11.80, BUT GOLD INVENTORY ADVANCED:4.42 TONNES

MARCH 15/WITH GOLD DOWN $7.85, NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 833.73 TONNES

MARCH 14/WITH GOLD DOWN $1.55/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 833.73 TONNES

MARCH 13/WITH GOLD UP $6.25/NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 833.73 TONNES

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

APRIL 17/2018/ Inventory rests tonight at 865.89 tonnes

*IN LAST 363 TRADING DAYS: 75.15 NET TONNES HAVE BEEN REMOVED FROM THE GLD
*LAST 313 TRADING DAYS: A NET 81.15 TONNES HAVE NOW BEEN ADDED INTO GLD INVENTORY.

end

Now the SLV Inventory/

APRIL 17/WITH SILVER UP 10 CENTS TODAY/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS  AT 320.196 MILLION OZ

April 16/WITH SILVER UP 7 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ/

April 13/WITH SILVER UP 17 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ.

April 12/WITH SILVER DOWN 27 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ/

April 11/2018/WITH SILVER UP 16 CENTS:  NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ/

APRIL 10/WITH GOLD UP 8 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ/

APRIL 9/WITH SILVER UP 12 CENTS/WE HAD NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ/

APRIL 6/WITH SILVER UP 4 CENTS, WE HAD A HUGE DEPOSIT OF 1.319 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 320.196 MILLION OZ

APRIL 5/WITH SILVER UP 6 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.877 MILLION OZ/

April 4/WITH SILVER DOWN 11 CENTS/A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/ A WITHRAWAL OF 135,000 OZ AND THIS IS PROBABLY TO PAY FOR FEES/INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.877 MILLION OZ/

APRIL 3./WITH SILVER DOWN 16 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ/

APRIL 2/WITH SILVER UP 34 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 29/WITH SILVER UP 6 CENTS, THE CROOKS DECIDED THAT THEY HAD BETTER ADD SOME 943,000 PAPER OZ TO THEIR INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ

March 28/WITH SILVER DOWN 27 CENTS/AGAIN NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.069 MILLION OZ

MARCH 27/WITH SILVER DOWN 14 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.069 MILLION OZ/

WITH SILVER UP 11 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.069 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 23/WITH SILVER UP 19 CENTS, A HAD A BIG WITHDRAWAL OF 1.602 MILLION OZ.INVENTORY RESTS AT 318.069 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 22/WITH SILVER DOWN ONE CENT, NO CHANGE IN SLV INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.671 MILLION OZ/

March 21/WITH SILVER UP 21 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SLV INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.671 MILLION OZ/

March 20/WITH SILVER DOWN 13 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SLV INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.671 MILLION OZ/

March 19/WITH SILVER UP 5 CENTS, THE SLV ADDS A SMALL 659,000 OZ TO ITS INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.671 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 16/WITH SILVER DOWN 15 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ.

FOR THE WEEK;  SILVER IS DOWN 42 CENTS YET ADDS 943,000 OZ OF SILVER INTO THE SLV/

MARCH 15/WITH SILVER DOWN 11 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 14/WITH SILVER DOWN 8 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 13/WITH SILVER UP 10 CENTS/NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.012 MILLION OZ/

HAD ANOTHER HUGE ADDITION OF 1.315 MILLION OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 316.590 MILLION OZ/

APRIL 17/2018:  A NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY:  

Inventory 320.196 million oz

end

6 Month MM GOFO 2.04/ and libor 6 month duration 2.51

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

G0FO+ 2.04%

libor 2.51 FOR 6 MONTHS/

GOLD LENDING RATE: .46%

XXXXXXXX

12 Month MM GOFO
+ 2.75%

LIBOR FOR 12 MONTH DURATION: 2.51

GOFO = LIBOR – GOLD LENDING RATE

GOLD LENDING RATE  = +.24

end

Major gold/silver trading /commentaries for TUESDAY

GOLDCORE/BLOG/MARK O’BYRNE.

GOLD/SILVER

London House Prices See Fastest Quarterly Fall Since 2009 Crisis

– London house prices fell by 3.2% in the first quarter – Halifax
– Brexit, financial and geo-political uncertainty lead to falls
– Excluding sale of seven £10m-plus houses in London, prices were down 3.4% in the year
– UK house prices climb by just 0.4% in April, the slowest increase since 2008 for same period
– Sales transactions fall by 19% and asking versus selling prices show turning into buyers’ market
– Homeowner or not, buy physical gold to hedge falls in physical property

Editor: Mark O’Byrne

London house prices declined at the sharpest pace in nine years during the first quarter of 2018, the latest data from  Halifax shows.

London house prices fell by 3.2% in the first three months of the year according to the Halifax House Price Index. This was the fastest rate of decline since the UK and global financial crisis in 2009.

The average London house price fell to £430,759, its lowest since the end of 2015.

Average prices of London property continued to drop this month with house prices in the capital down by 0.6%, contributing to an overall fall of 2% for the year.

The UK property market has remained more resilient so far. The national average asking price for properties appearing for the first time was up by 0.4%. Six of the eleven major UK regions reached individual property price highs.

In London sellers are no longer achieving the asking price. The days of buyers outbidding one another seem long gone.

Anecdotally, a friend selling a 2-bed flat in West London’s Putney has had to lower the price from £595,000 to £545,000. A couple of years ago there would have been a queue around the block filled with potential buyers, armed with mortgage offers and desperation to pay ‘whatever it takes’.

My friend’s experience is worse than the data suggests. Research from Rightmove finds that sellers are achieving 95.6% of the asking price, with an average loss of £27,442 based on the average London asking price of £628,039. The difference reflects the ‘cloud 9’ approach of sellers who are yet to come to terms with the fact that buyers can no longer afford to pay any asking price.

By way of comparison the national average loss is £10,000, or 96.7 per cent of the final asking price. A difference of 1.1% between the two groups (London versus national) is not that dramatic and perhaps suggests than London is the siren call for the rest of the UK.

The fall in the London boroughs appears to be concentrated in the central areas of the city and outer boroughs are yet to feel the tightening. This is most likely due to the ripple effect.

The worries surrounding Brexit, stamp duty and interest rates will eventually be felt everywhere. This is regardless of how and when inflation really begins to bite.

Ongoing house price climbs are unsustainable

The strong performance by the rest of the UK may be seen as something to celebrate by those angry about the north-south divide. In reality history and data suggests this is not a sustainable situation for the long-term.

As we have already seen in London, home buyers will becoming increasingly stretched as prices climb. Wages are certainly not increasing but interest rates are.

The 0.4% increase in house prices was down significantly from the 1.5% climb seen in the previous period, perhaps a reflection of a changing and pushed market.

The property correction, and potentially crash, has started closest to the centre of the capital first. Soon a ripple effect will likely play out.

Many of the factors felt by central Londoners will also be experienced by the rest of the UK. Brexit, interest rate climbs or stamp duty rises make this likely. Brexit may be felt more keenly in the capital but this will set the tone for the rest of the country.

Banks are feeling financial pressures and the jobs market is certainly not suggesting to anyone that wages are on their way up. None of these are London-exclusive problems.

Throw in Brexit and you’ve just served up uncertainty on a platter for the entire UK.

Listen on SoundCloud , Blubrry & iTunesWatch on YouTube below

Pressured first-time buyers support the market

In the short-term it may well remain a sellers’ market. There are still some property shortages across the country. Brits remain instilled with the psyche that it is better to own a home than to rent one. Earlier this year first-time buyers reached 10-year highs, ‘thanks’ to help-to-buy and shared ownership schemes. With interest rates set to climb further and stamp duty here to stay we may see a surge from first time buyers keen to jump on the housing ladder before it becomes even more unaffordable.

Rightmove and propertywire, explain the key differences between the property prices, lead by first-tme buyers:

The index also shows that typical first time buyer properties with two bedrooms or fewer are up by 2.2% average year on year, while the sector favoured by second steppers, mainly comprising three bedroom properties, rose by 2.7% rise.

In contrast, the more expensive top of the ladder category, typically detached with four bedrooms or more, has a more muted annual rate of increase of 0.9% and is still behind its peak set in October 2017 of £542,347.

‘In the more popular locations and for the property with the right specifications, buyer demand is helping to push prices higher. A lack of choice is nudging prices up to test the ceiling of what the market will pay,’ Shipside pointed out.

An abundance of houses or not, if they are unaffordable then there won’t be much demand for them.

Whilst the government is apparently working to increase the number of new homes, it may be too little too late. A housing shortage was not the driver of the housing boom. It was easy money and easy lending and those days are rapidly coming to an end and there are consequences to the age of frivolity by mortgage lenders and over-stretched buyers.

No property? You’re still vulnerable

London should not be seen as the outlier when it comes to property prices. It just feels change more acutely than the rest of the UK. Investors and analysts should see it as an only partially effective shock-absorber or airbag.

A crash appears likely. As ever, those who are diversified and own gold will weather the storm better than those who do not.

It’s easy to think that you are immune from a housing market crash if you are not a property owner. Sadly there are few who will be unaffected by a fall in property prices. So ingrained is the debt-fuelled housing market in our economy that all investors, savers and consumers are exposed.

Whilst the crash in house prices looks inevitable, it may not be imminent. The slow collapse in the London housing market has been ongoing since before the Brexit referendum, as buyers face the reality of reduced real wages and increased interest rates.

Investors and savers should hedge themselves by allocating a sensible proportion of their portfolio to the only real counter-party free asset – gold and silver bullion coins and bars.

Listen on SoundCloud , Blubrry & iTunesWatch on YouTube below

Recommended reading

London Property Sees Brave Bet By Norway As Foxtons Profits Plunge

Brexit Risks Increase – London Property Market and Pound Vulnerable

London Property Market Tumbles As Glut of Luxury Apartments Grows To 3,000

News and Commentary

Gold ends higher as Trump comments put pressure on the dollar (MarketWatch.com)

Gold inches up as dollar slides, but risk premium fades (Reuters.com)

U.S. Homebuilder Sentiment Declined in April for a Fourth Month (Bloomberg.com)

US retail sales beat expectaiton, but Empire State survey showed outlook waned sharply (ActionForex.com)

U.S. retail sales spring back 0.6% in March after three straight declines (MarketWatch.com)


Source: Bloomberg

Barclays: Geopolitical Risk Is Back To Cold War Highs (ZeroHedge.com)

Does The “Normalization” of the Fed’s Balance Sheet Signal the Next Asset Collapse Has Begun? (Econimica)

Greece Back in the Spotlight (Bloomberg.com)

U.S. Libor Replacement, Two Weeks After Debut, Has Some Issues (Bloomberg.com)

Silver’s Bullet (Bloomberg.com)

Listen on SoundCloud , Blubrry & iTunesWatch on YouTube below

Gold Prices (LBMA AM)

16 Apr: USD 1,344.40, GBP 941.21 & EUR 1,087.62 per ounce
13 Apr: USD 1,340.75, GBP 938.93 & EUR 1,087.35 per ounce
12 Apr: USD 1,345.90, GBP 951.01 & EUR 1,090.99 per ounce
11 Apr: USD 1,345.20, GBP 947.96 & EUR 1,087.86 per ounce
10 Apr: USD 1,335.95, GBP 942.25 & EUR 1,083.46 per ounce
09 Apr: USD 1,328.50, GBP 941.91 & EUR 1,082.33 per ounce

Silver Prices (LBMA)

16 Apr: USD 16.60, GBP 11.61 & EUR 13.42 per ounce
13 Apr: USD 16.51, GBP 11.57 & EUR 13.40 per ounce
12 Apr: USD 16.66, GBP 11.74 & EUR 13.50 per ounce
11 Apr: USD 16.57, GBP 11.67 & EUR 13.39 per ounce
10 Apr: USD 16.49, GBP 11.65 & EUR 13.38 per ounce
09 Apr: USD 16.34, GBP 11.59 & EUR 13.32 per ounce


Recent Market Updates

– Global Debt Bubble Hits New All Time High – One Quadrillion Reasons To Buy Gold
– Oil Surges Over 8%, Gold and Silver Marginally Higher, Stocks Gain In Volatile Week
– EU and Euro Exposed To Risks Including Trade Wars and War With Russia In Middle East
– Trump Tweets Russia “Get Ready” For Missiles In Syria – Gold, Oil Rise and Stocks Fall
– Private: EU and Euro Exposed To Trade Wars, Energy Dependence, Anti-EU and Anti-Euro Movements
– Trump Making ‘Major Decisions’ on Syria, Iran and Russia Response ‘Very Quickly’
– Gold Out Performs Stocks In 2018 and This Century By Ratio Of Two To One
– Jamie Dimon Warns Of Potential ‘Market Panic’
– Silver Bullion: Should We Be Worried About Silver?
– Martin Luther King Jr. Anniversary: Reminds Us Of Costs Of War To Society and Financial System
– Gold Outperforms Stocks In Q1, 2018
– Brexit, Stagflation Pressures UK High Street
– Gold Is Money While Currencies Today Are “IOU Nothings”

janskoyles

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

_________________
___________________________________________________________________

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

 

i) Chinese yuan vs USA dollar/CLOSED UP 6.2834  /shanghai bourse CLOSED DOWN 43.85 POINTS OR 1.41%   / HANG SANG CLOSED DOWN 252.84 POINTS OR 0.83%
2. Nikkei closed UP 12.06 POINTS OR 0.06%/  /USA: YEN RISES TO 107.07/  

3. Europe stocks OPENED IN THE GREEN     /USA dollar index RISES TO 89.45/Euro FALLS TO 1.2374

3b Japan 10 year bond yield: FALLS TO . +.045/ !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 107.07/ THIS IS TROUBLESOME AS BANK OF JAPAN IS RUNNING OUT OF BONDS TO BUY./JAPAN 10 YR YIELD FINALLY IN THE POSITIVE/BANK OF JAPAN LOSING CONTROL OF THEIR YIELD CURVE AS THEY PURCHASE ALL BONDS TO GET TO ZERO RATE!!

3c Nikkei now JUST BELOW 17,000

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

3e WTI:: 66.25  and Brent: 71.39

3f Gold DOWN/Yen DOWN

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

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

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

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund FALLS TO +.525%/Italian 10 yr bond yield DOWN to 1.771% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD DOWN TO 1.231%

3j Greek 10 year bond yield RISES TO : 4.027?????????????????

3k Gold at $1342.40 silver at:16.65     7 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $18.50

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble DOWN 43/100 in roubles/dollar) 61.56

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

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

JAPAN ON JAN 29.2016 INITIATES NIRP. THIS MORNING THEY SIGNAL THEY MAY END NIRP. TODAY THE USA/YEN TRADES TO 107.07 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 0.9619 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.1906 well above the floor set by the Swiss Finance Minister. Thomas Jordan, chief of the Swiss National Bank continues to purchase euros trying to lower value of the Swiss Franc.

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

3r the 10 Year German bund now POSITIVE territory with the 10 year RISING to +0.541%

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 2.8359% early this morning (THIS IS DEADLY TO ALL MARKETS). Thirty year rate at 3.0350% /

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

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

US Futures Surge; Confused Dollar Stumbles Then Spikes Higher

US equity futures continued their Monday ramp, rising 0.5% alongside advancing stocks in Europe after investor focus shifted to earnings and the economic outlook, and away from fading geopolitical and trade war risks. The result is another sea of green in our futures screen this morning.

US Futures shrugged off weakness in Asia to point to a higher U.S. open as traders awaited results from companies including Goldman Sachs, while Europe’s Stoxx 600 Index rebounded from Monday’s drop.

The dollar initially flirted with the lowest level in two months in the wake of President Donald Trump’s latest verbal foray into exchange rates, before U.K. wage growth including bonuses missed estimates and a survey showed German investor confidence tumbling. The pound and euro edged lower (after another notable ZEW miss, see below) as the dollar rebounded sharply.

Stocks were encouraged by the limited fallout from a U.S.-led strike on Syria over the weekend – except for the occasional daily Israeli airstrike on Syria – while the U.S. government’s announcement it has not decided on additional sanctions on Russia suggested tensions between Moscow and DC are easing.

Meanwhile, investors are counting on Q1 earnings, expected to post the biggest Y/Y earnings increase since 2011 thanks to Trump’s tax reform – to fuel a recovery in equities and are looking for hints on the monetary-policy outlook from Federal Reserve officials due to speak this week, including incoming New York Fed President John Williams.

As Bloomberg adds, corporate earnings should offer some distraction for investors after a torrid period for stocks, but there remain no shortage of other catalysts waiting in the wings to roil markets. Trump’s latest intervention in currencies comes at a time of already elevated geopolitical tension, and ongoing fears of a lurch toward global protectionism.

Meanwhile, the macroeconomic backdrop leave quite a bit to desired as overnight China’s Q1 GDP print just met estimates (on a Y/Y basis and missed Q/Q) while industrial production in March came in below forecasts.

  • China Q1 GDP YoY MEET at 6.8%, versus +6.8% exp. and +6.8% prior.
  • China Retail Sales YoY BEAT at 10.1%, versus +9.7% exp. and +9.4% prior.
  • China Industrial Production YoY MISS at 6.0%, versus +6.3% exp. and +6.2% prior.
  • China Fixed Asset Investment YoY MISS at 7.5%, versus +7.7% exp. and +7.9% prior.

However, Q1 GDP QoQ disappointed, rising only 1.4% QoQ (versus expectations of a 1.5% QoQ jump

To be sure, trade war rumbling remain: earlier in the session tech shares slumped on the MSCI Asia Pacific Index after China’s ZTE Corp. was blocked from buying crucial American technology and its suppliers fell.

The dollar fell in U.S. trading after President Donald Trump took to Twitter to accuse China and Russia of “playing the Currency Devaluation game” as the U.S. raises interest rates. GBP/USD rises to 1.4354 in Asian trading, highest since Brexit, as purchases from leveraged accounts takes out sell orders from ex- Asia funds above 1.4340. Aussie dollar declines on macro selling after mixed China data while kiwi falls as it tries to consolidate under resistance around 0.7400.

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index came under intense pressure during Asia hours, touching its lowest level since Feb. 16; however it rapidly pared its drop after London stepped in, before erasing its entire move lower as German ZEW data missed estimates.

This also sent the euro to session lows at 1.2365 as of 6:30am ET, versus a three-week high of 1.2414 reached earlier.  While the days German ZEW data moved the currency market seem long gone, investors took notice this time around as investor confidence tumbled to its lowest level since late 2012 due to mounting risks to global trade.

Until the European open, the yen advanced to session high against the dollar on concern currency issues will surface at a meeting between U.S. President Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Abe that starts Tuesday. However, as the dollar rebound picked up steam, the Yen slumped and was trading largely unchanged at last check.  The pound erased early gains as U.K. labor data failed to provide fresh stimulus to bulls who opted to take profit on part of their exposure.

In other overnight geopol and trade news:

  • China is prepared and ready to start trade countermeasures; according to China Foreign Ministry spokeswoman.
  • US is said to be considering ways to retaliate against Chinese restrictions on US tech firms
  • Mexico Economy Minister Guajardo says 10 NAFTA chapters are already concluded or close to conclusion adds they are exploring a possible meeting with USTR Lighthizer on Thursday but is not expecting a major announcement regarding NAFTA on Thursday.
  • China diplomat warns that UK trade discussions with China would face significant uncertainties if UK fails to strike a Brexit deal with the EU.
  • Syrian TV reports that air defenses are responding to missiles over Syria’s Homs and that there is an unidentified aircraft over Damascus.
  • North Korea and South Korea are reported to discuss announcing a permanent end to military conflict, according to press reports.

In rates, the U.S. yield curve slightly steepens in Asia with 10-yr yields edging up 1bp to 2.83% while 2-yr yield is little changed at 2.37%. The 5s30s curve broke below 35bps in U.S. session to touch its flattest level since August 2007.

Oil steadied at $66.57 a barrel for U.S. crude and $71.66 a barrel for Brent having tumbled nearly 1.8 percent overnight as concerns over Middle East tensions eased. Gold (-0.4%) prices have dipped lower, closer to the bottom of the range but losses are modest at best. Chinese iron ore futures extended losses and hit a 10-month low on concerns of a supply glut. On the flip side, London aluminium futures extend their rally to the highest level in almost seven years, buoyed by growing concerns that the aftermath of the US sanctions on major Russian producer Rusal will result in tighter supply conditions.

Bulletin Headline Summary from RanSquawk

  • EU equities firmer on an improved risk sentiment
  • Cable falls on weaker than expected wage data
  • Looking ahead, highlights include, US Building Permits, Housing Starts, Industrial Production, APIs, Fed’s Williams, Bostic,Quarles, Harker and Evans

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures up 0.4% to 2,692.25
  • STOXX Europe 600 up 0.2% to 378.66
  • MSCI Asia Pacific down 0.3% to 173.11
  • MSCI Asia Pacific ex Japan down 0.5% to 564.81
  • Nikkei up 0.06% to 21,847.59
  • Topix down 0.4% to 1,729.98
  • Hang Seng Index down 0.8% to 30,062.75
  • Shanghai Composite down 1.4% to 3,066.80
  • Sensex up 0.2% to 34,380.72
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 unchanged at 5,841.55
  • Kospi down 0.2% to 2,453.77
  • German 10Y yield rose 0.4 bps to 0.529%
  • Euro up 0.2% to $1.2400
  • Italian 10Y yield rose 0.5 bps to 1.547%
  • Spanish 10Y yield unchanged at 1.244%
  • Brent futures up 0.2% to $71.56/bbl
  • Gold spot down 0.2% to $1,343.10
  • U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 89.41

Top Overnight News from BBG

  • China’s economic expansion held up amid robust consumer spending, underpinning global growth and giving authorities more room to purge excessive borrowing, while the industrial sector showed signs of modest slowdown.
  • U.S. Libor replacement runs into issues just two weeks after debut. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York said Monday it had mistakenly included certain repo transactions in the settings for April 2 to April 12 for the new benchmark, SOFR
  • Trump suffered a setback as a federal judge rejected his initial request to keep prosecutors from immediately reviewing evidence seized by the FBI from his longtime personal lawyer, Michael Cohen
  • U.K. wages are rising at their fastest pace in almost three years, raising the prospect of an end to the squeeze on living standards, according to Office for National Statistics data. The unemployment rate fell but headline earnings growth figure missed estimates and weighed on sterling
  • German investor confidence tumbled to its lowest level since late 2012 on mounting risks to global trade and signs of a domestic economic slowdown
  • Bank of England staff are close to finding out who will help the next governor settle in after Mark Carney steps down
  • Trump announced his intention to nominate Richard Clarida, a respected monetary economist and Pacific Investment Management Co. global strategic adviser, as vice chairman of the Federal Reserve
  • Russia is using compromised computer-network equipment to attack U.S. and British companies and government agencies, the two countries warned in an unprecedented joint alert
  • China plans to remove foreign ownership limits for auto ventures within the next four years, giving a boost to global companies seeking better access to the world’s biggest vehicle market
  • U.K. PM Theresa May will face a second debate in as many days on Britain’s role in bombing Syria on Tuesday after she stayed late the night before listening to lawmakers’ views in the House of Commons
  • Aluminum surged to a six-year high as the impact of U.S. sanctions against United Co. Rusal continued to reverberate through the global market. Some forecast the price may hit $3,000 a metric ton

Asia equity markets traded with a somewhat indecisive tone after the positive momentum from Wall St waned as the region digested mixed tier-1 data releases from China including GDP. ASX 200 (+0.2%) saw mild gains amid a slew of corporate updates, while Nikkei 225 (Unch) was flat with price action contained by a firm JPY. Hang Seng (-0.83%) and Shanghai Comp. (-1.4%) were choppy in reaction to the mixed data figures in which GDP Y/Y printed inline with estimates at 6.8% which surpasses the official target for 2018, while Q/Q printed slightly below estimates at 1.4% vs. Exp. 1.5%. Furthermore, Industrial Production also disappointed but was counterbalanced by solid growth in Retail Sales. Finally, 10yr JGBs were relatively flat amid a similar picture seen in riskier assets in Japan, while a 5yr JGB auction also failed to spur price action despite slightly firmer demand and higher prices, as this was in tandem with a lower amount sold.

Top Asia News

  • China Slaps Anti-Dumping Duties on $957 Million U.S. Grain Trade
  • Kaisa Group Is Said to Discuss Dollar-Bond Sale With Banks
  • Chinese Stocks Sink Below Key Level as Investor Concerns Mount
  • Asia IPO Bankers Continue Game of Musical Chairs With BofA Moves
  • Commonwealth Bank to Spin Off Global Asset Management Arm in IPO

European equities have shown strength (Eurostoxx +0.3%) on the back of improved risk sentiment with Syrian tensions continuing to abate. This is most noted in the materials and IT sectors, with both leading their peers. Negativity is noted in consumer discretionary, led by Reckitt Benckiser (-2.6%) on a broker downgrade by Credit Suisse. Elsewhere, Chinese permission for foreign auto companies to set up more than two ventures has led to auto names strengthening with Daimler rising from EUR 65.24 to EUR 65.44 and BMW up from EUR 90.47 to EUR 91.10. GKN (2.2%) have been supported with Melrose expecting an offer to become unconditional by April 19th, AB food (+2.6%) are higher amid an earnings beat and Bayer (2.0%) have been lifted by the news that the co. has agreed to sell 3.6% of new shares to Singaporean state investment company Temasek for EUR 3bln; this comes as the company plans for a USD 62.5bln takeover of Monsanto.

Top European News

  • Airlines Have to Pay EU Passengers for Some Strikes
  • U.K. Wages Rise Most Since 2015 as End to Consumer Squeeze Nears
  • Russia Looks to Dodge Crossfire of Sanctions as Eurobond Beckons
  • Sabadell Is Said to Focus on U.K. as Probable Target for M&A
  • Telefonica Is Said to Hire Banks for Argentine Share Sale

In currencies, the USD remains under pressure, and the index slipped through chart support in the 89.355-325 area that houses a recent April low and rising channel, to expose 89.250 ahead of 89.000 and another major downside technical level around 88.942 (end of March base), before regaining a foothold on disappointing EU data.  EUR/GBP: Still vying for top spot within the G10, as the cross remains in a broad 0.8650-00 range amidst decent buying interest between 0.8625-30, but both making further headway against the Greenback. Eur/Usd finally absorbed offers ahead of 1.2400 to trade above on stops (briefly), while Eur/Chf climbed to a fresh post-SNB floor removal peak just over 1.1900 as Usd/Chf hovers around 0.9600. Cable has also notched up a landmark after setting a new post-Brexit vote best around 1.4375 and now eyeing 1.4400 barrier resistance assuming no major set-back in wake of broadly softer than expected UK labour and earnings data – 1.4300 is holding in thus far. JPY: Retreating from recent 107.00+ highs and pivoting around the big figure with daily chart support around 106.89 underpinning the pair vs hefty 1.5 bn option expiry interest at 107.20 that appears to be capping the upside

In commodities, taking a look at the commodities complex, oil prices consolidated from the overnight gains with WTI (-0.1%) and Brent Crude (- 0.1%) modestly lower on the day as concerns of supply disruptions in the Middle East temporarily fade, whilst rising US shale outputs is on traders’ minds ahead of the API weekly inventories later  today. Moving onto the metals bloc, gold (-0.4%) prices have  dipped lower, closer to the bottom of the range but losses are modest at best. Overnight, Chinese GDP printed in line at 6.8%, above the government’s target of around 6.5%. However, industrial output came short of the expected 6.3%, whilst daily steel output in March climbed to the highest level since September. In turn, Chinese iron ore futures extended losses and hit a 10-month low on concerns of a supply glut. On the flip side, London aluminium futures extend their rally to the highest level in almost seven years, buoyed by growing concerns that the aftermath of the US sanctions on major Russian producer Rusal will result in tighter supply conditions.

Looking at the day ahead, in Europe the most significant releases are UK employment stats for February and March, and Germany’s April ZEW survey which as noted above tumbled to the lowest since 2012. In the US we’ll get March housing starts and building permits as well as March industrial and manufacturing production. Today is a busy day for Fedspeak with Williams, Quarles, Harker, Evans and Bostic all slated to speak. Meanwhile, President Trump is due to welcome Japan PM Abe, while the IMF and World Bank Annual Spring Meetings will commence, concluding April 22nd. Goldman Sachs is the earnings highlight along with IBM and Johnson & Johnson.

US Event Calendar

  • 8:30am: Housing Starts, est. 1.27m, prior 1.24m; MoM, est. 2.51%, prior -7.0%
  • 8:30am: Building Permits, est. 1.32m, prior 1.3m; MoM, est. 0.0%, prior -5.7%
  • 9:15am: Industrial Production MoM, est. 0.3%, prior 1.1%; Manufacturing (SIC) Production, est. 0.1%, prior 1.2%

DB’s Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

Markets were generally passported back to better times yesterday as they breathed a collective sigh of relief after there was no ramp up in rhetoric or escalation to the Syrian missile strikes over the weekend. Indeed, even another fairly controversial Trump tweet (more on that below) did little to dampen the generally upbeat start for risk as the S&P 500 (+0.81%) moved back into positive territory for 2018 for the first time since mid-March. The ViX (16.56)  also hit its lowest since mid-March and is down 33.4% from its recent high. The Dow (+0.87%) and Nasdaq (+0.70%) also finished higher although prior to this European markets did actually fade at the close to finish slightly  lower. The Stoxx 600 in particular ended -0.39%. Treasuries on the other hand were a bit weaker but the reality is that they continue to just ebb and flow in this fairly tight range at present. 10y Treasuries ended last night unchanged at 2.828% (a high of 2.86% and threatening to break out though) which means that they’ve stayed in a slightly greater than 20bp range since the start of February even though they climbed 30bps during January. Bunds continue to bump along the bottom of their recent yield range and it is worth noting that the 2y Treasury-Bund spread closed at 296bps, marking a fresh high since the reunification of Germany. Elsewhere, WTI oil fell for the first time in six days to $66.22/bbl (-1.74%) while LME aluminium jumped 4.99% yesterday to the highest since  September 2011.

Overnight the main focus has been on China where we’ve received the Q1 GDP print which was in line at 6.8% yoy and steady since last September. In addition to that we’ve also had the March activity data, with retail sales above market (10.1% yoy vs. 9.7% expected) while the March IP eased 0.2ppt mom to 6.0% yoy (vs. 6.3% expected). After the bell in the US, Netflix’s share price jumped c5% after reporting better than expected growth in subscribers. This morning in Asia, markets are mixed and little changed with the Hang Seng and Nikkei broadly flat, the ASX 200 is up +0.25% while the Shanghai Comp. is down -0.35%. Back to yesterday, the tweet that we referred to at the top from President Trump which attracted the usual attention was: “Russia and China are playing the currency devaluation game as the US keeps raising interest rates. Not acceptable!”. The USD was weaker in response but in reality was already declining before the President tweeted. Still, this was the first reference to FX policy by the President in some time however it perhaps says something that the Predata Trump Presidential Volatility Index – which measures fluctuations in online discussions about the multiple political controversies surrounding the administration of Trump (similar to PVIX) – is still below the highest levels in January, February and March this year, and indeed most of last year, suggesting a bit of fatigue perhaps in Trump’s social media comments.

In other news, US banks actually lagged a bit yesterday despite the move higher for bond yields and also slightly better than expected results for BofA. On the latter, the Bank reported EPS of 62c for Q1 which was ahead of the 59c consensus following cost cuts, while revenues also marginally beat expectations. That continues what has been a generally solid set of results for US banks so far with all 4 banks having beaten earnings expectations and 3 of 4 beating on revenues (1 in line). As a reminder, today we’ll get Goldman Sachs’ results.

Now moving onto the four Fed speakers on rates and inflation. The Fed’s Dudley noted that “as long as inflation is relatively low, the Fed is going to be gradual (on rate hikes)”, but “if inflation were to go above 2% by an  appreciable margin, then I think the gradual path might have to be altered”. Following on, Mr Kaplan expects the Fed to hike rates two more times this year and more next year. He added that “I don’t have a problem with being restrictive” on rates, provided rates do not rise above the 2.5%-2.75% range that he estimates as their “neutral” level. Further, rate hikes should not move up so fast or far which leads to an inverted yield curve. Conversely, Mr Kashkari noted “there are now indications that inflation is gradually starting to move toward our 2% target”, but “I don’t see signs of any sudden acceleration in inflation or overheating”. Hence, “its’ hard to say when the Fed should raise rates again”, in part as he “prefers not to make such predictions because (he) wants the data to guide us rather than some promise that we’ve made”. Finally, Mr Bostic noted the Fed has not seen much movement in wage growth while “we’re having a conversation why we have struggled to reach” the Fed’s 2% inflation target.

Back in Europe, the ECB’s Praet noted “the growth outlook confirms our confidence that inflation will converge toward our aim of close to 2% over the medium term” but reiterated that inflation developments “remain subdued” and ample degree of stimulus remains necessary. He also played down the recent softening in Euro area economic data, as it followed “several quarters of very strong growth”. Elsewhere, the ECB’s Visco noted Italian banks have improved but there are ‘still some weakness” and banks overall must take advantage of the current favourable conditions to improve their balance sheets and profitability. Turning to the some of the other headlines in the US, the White House has confirmed that President Trump intends to nominate Richard Clarida as the next Fed Vice-Chair and Kanas State Bank Commissioner Michelle Bowman to fill one of the vacant Fed Governor positions. Mr Clarida is a Columbia University professor and an MD at Pimco. On the nominations, the Fed’s Kaplan said he has known “Rich for many years” and “thinks extremely highly of him”. Overall, he “don’t know (if the new nominees) will change the dynamic around the table”.

Elsewhere, the White House has noted the new sanctions on Russian firms as flagged by the US ambassador to the UN are not imminent, in part as the Washington Post noted President Trump is not comfortable with the additional measures yet. Moving on, the US Treasury noted China’s holding of US debt increased $8.5bn mom to $1.18trn in February, marking the largest monthly increase in six months. Finally, the US Commerce Department has imposed a 7  year ban on the Chinese telco. company ZTE Corp. from buying sensitive technology from US suppliers, as it alleged that the company engaged in illegal conduct and making false statements to US authorities. As we type, the ZTE shares are in trading halt in HK.

Away from the micro, there was a bit of US data to also digest yesterday with the March retail sales report. There were no great surprises in the data however with both ex auto sales (+0.2% mom) and control group sales (+0.4%  mom) printing in line with expectations. Headline sales (+0.6% mom vs. +0.4% expected) did surprise to the upside. It’s also worth noting the April empire manufacturing print which came in at a much softer than expected 15.8 (vs. 18.4 expected) and down nearly 7pts from March. Of most significance was the fall in the outlook component with the index for future business conditions falling 26pts to 18.3 and to the lowest in a bit over 2 years. It was also the biggest monthly decline since September 2001. So signs that the heightened protectionist measures in recent weeks are weighing on the outlook for businesses in the sector. Elsewhere, the February business inventories was in line at 0.2% mom. Factoring in the above, the latest Atlanta Fed’s estimate of real PCE and GDP growth are 0.9% saar and 1.9% saar respectively.

Looking at the day ahead, in Europe the most significant releases are UK employment stats for February and March, and Germany’s April ZEW survey. In the afternoon in the US we’ll get March housing starts and building permits as well as March industrial and manufacturing production. Today is a busy day for Fedspeak with Williams, Quarles, Harker, Evans and Bostic all slated to speak. Meanwhile, President Trump is due to welcome Japan PM Abe, while the IMF and World Bank Annual Spring Meetings will commence, concluding April 22nd. Goldman Sachs is the earnings highlight along with IBM and Johnson & Johnson.

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)TUESDAY MORNING/MONDAY NIGHT: Shanghai closed DOWN 43.85 POINTS OR 1.41%  /Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 252.84 POINTS OR 0.83%   / The Nikkei closed UP 12.06 POINTS OR 0.06%/Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP .02% /Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed UP at 6.2834/Oil DOWN to 66.69 dollars per barrel for WTI and 71.81 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED IN THE RED    .   ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP AT 6.2834 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.2773 /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING  A LITTLE STRONGER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /CHINA RETALIATES WITH TARIFFS/ TRUMP RESPONDS TO NEW TARIFFS AND IT NOW LOOKS LIKE A FULL TRADE WAR IS BEGINNING/

3 a NORTH KOREA/USA

North Korea/South Korea

 

3 b JAPAN AFFAIRS

end

c) REPORT ON CHINA/HONG KONG

USA is now planning a 3rd front into its attack on China.  China does not allow USA firms to compete in China unless they find a joint venture partner of Chinese origin. Basically Chinese high technology is off limits to the USA and Trump is planning to remedy this:

(courtesy zerohedge)

US Planning To Open “Third Front” In China Trade Spat

In news that broke (conveniently, we should add) shortly after the market closed on Monday, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that the White House is gearing up for what would be the third front in its nascent trade spat with China.

As the paper points out, Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer is preparing a fresh trade complaint – again under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 – the same section of the trade act under which the US filed its complaint about China’s intellectual property abuses, aka the first salvo in the US’s trade war.

This time, Lighthizer is aiming at China’s unfair restrictions on US companies trying to establish a foothold in China in high-tech industries like cloud computing. As a general rule, China requires foreign firms to partner with a domestic firm in a “revenue-sharing agreement” before they can gain entry to the Chinese market. By comparison, the US allows Chinese firms like Alibaba to function almost totally unfettered.

China

To be sure, Lighthizer has yet to decide whether to go ahead with the complaint, leaving the tariffs on steel and aluminum and the investigation into IP abuses as the only concrete actions that the White House has taken to hold China accountable for what Trump has described as decades of abuses on trade (threatening to impose tariffs on $150 billion in goods doesn’t count).

The trade representative has yet to decide whether to go ahead with the complaint, the individuals said, which would be in addition to recent moves to ratchet up pressure on China, including the imposition of tariffs on a total of $150 billion in Chinese imports. But USTR, which has taken the lead in the China trade fight, views China’s restrictions on cloud computing as providing a clear-cut example that might garner public support.

Beijing requires U.S. cloud-computing firms, such as  Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp. to form joint operations with Chinese companies and license their technology to the Chinese partners. The USTR has said in reports on Chinese trade practices that Beijing withholds licenses that would allow U.S. firms to operate independently in China.

As a result, U.S. companies can’t market their cloud-computing services in China or sign up customers directly. Chinese firms, such as Alibaba Group Holding , by comparison, are allowed to operate in the U.S. without restriction.

“Some non-Chinese companies are reluctant to participate in China’s cloud market due to the number of restrictions,” said K.C. Swanson, director of global policy for the Telecommunications Industry Association. “Meanwhile the U.S. has no restrictions on foreign participation in our markets, it’s a clear-cut reciprocity issue.”

Cloud-computing firms deliver computer services, including storage, software and analytics, over the internet, a service that is considered one of the most promising, high growth parts of the tech industry.

A spokeswoman for USTR declined to comment.

Should USTR go ahead with the complaint, it would become the third major action the U.S. has taken to further open the Chinese market—and would increase the risk of retaliation from Beijing. The U.S. has levied tariffs on imports of Chinese steel and aluminum, which has resulted in China hitting about $3 billion in U.S. imports to China with tariffs.

After reaffirming that China is on a “watch list” of possible currency manipulators (an issue that President Trump has suddenly taken up, ignoring a number of factors), WSJ says the Treasury is putting together restrictions on Chinese investment that could also be employed to prohibit Alibaba from offering cloud-computing services in the US or block the company’s expansion in another way.

Of course, Beijing has another edge in the burgeoning US-China trade war: US business groups, which have vehemently opposed the White House’s measures as counterproductive and akin to a tax on US businesses and consumers.

Last week, Trump applauded Chinese President Xi Jinping for touting several planned market liberalizations, including allowing automotive companies to operate in China without a domestic partner – a measure that had previously been touted by China’s top finance minister, Liu He.

While China has said this wasn’t intended as a “concession” to Trump, it’s possible that China could expand these liberalizations to include tech firms without losing face. Though that remains a big “if”.

If the recent past is any guide, expect to hear a response from China in the not-too-distant future (read tonight).

END

Two major points this morning:

  1. Chinese Macro data huge disappoints which sends their stocks markets into a tailspin
  2. China is now threatening retaliation for the ban of high tech equipment from the uSA to China’s big telecom company ZTE.  It seems that these guys were selling their chips to Iran.

(courtesy zerohedge)

China Macro Data Disappoints As MOFCOM Threatens Retaliation For ZTE Ban

With the yuan at its strongest since devaluing in 2015…

and lunar new year distortions starting to wash out of the macro-surprise data… (Monthly data for January and February are often plagued by shifts in the lunar new year holidays in China. For today’s March numbers, we should really be past that — although last week’s trade numbers still had a surprise impact.)

Tonight’s smorgasbord of Chinese economic data is the first glimpse of the state of the economy as the credit impulse slipped negative and the crackdown on shadow banking (and implicitly leverage) began.

Commodities are leading the China bubble for now, with bonds and stocks having been bubbled-through…

And China stocks (red) are notably underperforming their Asia-Pac peers (green)…

So, the markets need some hope to cling to and so we strongly doubt GDP will be allowed to miss. Bloomberg notes that the backdrop to today’s data is that China is broadly expected to slow somewhat this year, after last year it saw the first acceleration in growth since 2010, when China — and the rest of the world — was bouncing back from the global recession.

  • China Q1 GDP YoY MEET at 6.8%, versus +6.8% exp. and +6.8% prior.
  • China Retail Sales YoY BEAT at 10.1%, versus +9.7% exp. and +9.4% prior.
  • China Industrial Production YoY MISS at 6.0%, versus +6.3% exp. and +6.2% prior.
  • China Fixed Asset Investment YoY MISS at 7.5%, versus +7.7% exp. and +7.9% prior.

Notably, China Q1 GDP QoQ disappointed however, rising only 1.4% QoQ (versus expectations of a 1.5% QoQ jump…

So the initial sign is some softening in the industrial part of the economy, and strong growth in the consumer side.

This one will disappoint President Trump: Steel production still growing...

  • First Quarter Crude Steel Output Rises 5.4% to 212.15M Tons
  • March Crude Steel Output Rises 4.5% Y/Y to 73.98M Mt
  • March Steel Product Output Rises 4.2% to 89.77M Tons

Bloomberg’s Chris Anstey notes that on the softening in industrial-output growth, Goldman Sachs economists had warned that weather conditions in March weren’t favorable for reducing pollution — so authorities probably put more restrictions on production, construction, and transportation.

Additionally, a new indicator – the monthly survey-based urban unemployment rate will be introduced today, providing a reading on China’s labor market.

The NBS may start publishing China’s monthly surveyed unemployment rate (SUR) very soon. The government has long been in a dilemma: cares much about employment but lacked an effective gauge. SUR, we believe, is necessary for guiding the economic transition toward high-quality growth. Compiled according to international standards, the SUR defines the unemployed (the numerator) as people of working age (above 16) who are out of work, want a job, have actively sought work in the previous three months and are available to start work within the next two weeks.

Meanwhile, the Hong Kong Dollar remains glued to its peg band’s lower limit with HKMA intervention not helping for now…

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has bought a total of HK$19.02b ($2.4b) worth of Hong Kong dollars since the currency fell to the weak end of its trading band last week, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. This includes HK$9.36b of purchases in the past 24 hours. No need to proactively adjust the local dollar’s interest rates, as that would easily lead to doubts over the city’s determination in defending the linked exchange rate, HKMA says in an emailed statement.

But, despite this statement (raising rates would counter the USD Libor carry trade flows), when  former Hong Kong Monetary Authority Chief Executive Joseph Yam said there IS room for Hong Kong to adjust interest rates and additional exchange fund bill sales can be an option, the dollar strengthened

Finally, it appears the trade wars are anything but fading as China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a statement on its website that China has noticed U.S. Commerce Department’s export restriction on ZTE, and will take necessary measures to protect Chinese companies’ interests.

Trading of ZTE shares in Hong Kong suspended from 9am pending release of inside information announcement on the activation of denial order by U.S., it says in filing to Hong Kong stock exchange.

The statement went on to note that ZTE has cooperated with hundreds of U.S. companies and has contributed tens of thousands of jobs in the U.S.; and China hopes U.S. to fairly deal with the matter based on rules and regulations, and ensure fair, stable environment for company.

END

Trump not going to like this as China is doing exactly what it has been accused of: manipulating its currency as China reduces its RRR by i% and thus providing more liquidity to their banking system

(courtesy zerohedge)

 

China Cuts RRR By 1% To Release Liquidity

It’s only logical that one day after Trump accused China (and Russia) of playing the “currency devaluation game” in a time of rising Fed rates, that Beijing would respond by doing precisely what it was accused of, and moments ago the PBOC announced that effective April 25, China’s central bank will cut the reserve requirement ratio (RRR) for qualified banks by one percentage point.  The new targeted RRR will be effective April 25.

The PBoC said that that the cut is for banks to repay MLF loans and will release about 400BN yuan of liquidity net (excluding the MLF repayment). According to preliminary calculations, this targeted easing move is similar to what the PBOC did back in September 2017, when China cut the RRR by at least 50 bps; it marked the first RRR cut since February 2016.

So far, there has been no reaction in the USDCNH which trades at 6.2750. And while overnight Q1 YoY GDP was reported as coming in at 6.8%, various analysts have echoed what we said here recently, raising concerns that Chinese growth may have peaked at this juncture.

Here are some additional observations on China’s latest econ data from Bloomberg Economics’ Tom Orlik who writes that stead expansion in China’s 1Q GDP shows the economy shaking off threats from deleveraging and protectionism, however adding that a lower reading for nominal growth is a warning sign that the industrial reflation cycle that drove profits higher and made debt repayment more manageable in 2017 is turning down:

  • Growth of 6.8% year on year was unchanged from 4Q 2017 and in line with the consensus estimate. Relative to expectations of a continued slide in China’s growth, the stability in 2017 and that’s now stretching into 2018 tells a positive story.
  • Even so, a slowdown in nominal growth, which we calculate at 10.2% year on year in 1Q, down from 11.1% in 4Q 2017 and a peak of 11.7% a year earlier, is a reminder that China will not stay in its sweet spot forever. Indeed, when it comes to the all-important deleveraging challenge, it’s nominal growth that is the more important gauge.
  • The monthly numbers suggest a mixed end to the quarter. Industrial output and fixed asset investment both slowed. Retail sales accelerated.
  • Looking forward, we continue to expect a modest deceleration in growth stretching over the course of the year, as slower credit expansion and — potentially — protectionist trade policies take a toll. Our credit impulse — which measures the change in new credit as a share of GDP — is now pointing firmly down. Still, from 6.8% in 1Q our 6.3% call for the year as a whole is looking too pessimistic and we will revisit it.
  • As ever, the remarkable stability of China’s headline growth numbers raises questions about their value as a guide to the state of the economy. Since the start of 2015, GDP has moved in a range between 6.7% and 7%. A plausible story about current strength is that it reflects a rebound from a larger-than-reported slowdown in 2015.

end

China, true to form and carrying on its trade war with the USA announces a huge 179% tariff on USA Sorghum used in animal feed.

(courtesy zerohedge)

China Slaps 179% Tariff On US Sorghum Hours After US Bans Exports To China’s ZTE

In response to reports that the US is ramping up the “third front” in its trade spat with China by authorizing another investigation under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 – this time, aimed at obstacles that prevent US tech firms from competing in cloud computing and other high-tech industries – China has, as we anticipated, retaliated by slapping tariffs on US sorghum imports.

Yesterday, the US also revealed that it would stop US tech firms from selling components to Chinese telecom giant ZTE after accusing the company of lying during settlement negotiations – eliciting an angry response from Chinese officials, who urged US lawmakers to create a “fair, just and stable legal and policy environment” for Chinese companies, according to Xinhua.

Like Chinese tariffs on US pork products that were imposed earlier this month, the sorghum tariffs aren’t merely a threat: Rather, China says they will take effect on Wednesday, per Bloomberg.

US sorghum imports will incur a 178.6% tariff, China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a preliminary ruling on Tuesday. Wang Hejun, chief of the trade remedy and investigation bureau at the Ministry of Commerce, said the tariffs comply with domestic law and World Trade Organization standards.

The ruling follows a probe into Sorghum imports that began in February after Trump slapped tariffs on imported solar panels and washing machines – a decision that was viewed as an indirect slight at China.\

Trade

The tariffs come as a shortage of domestic grain has forced domestic feed mills to increase shipments of US grain. Yet, despite the shortage, analysts say the tariffs will force some shipment cancellations.

“The rate is quite high and some buyers may have to cancel shipments,” said Li Qiang, chief analyst with Shanghai JC Intelligence Co.

China imported about 4.8 million metric tons of sorghum from the US in 2017, worth about $957 million (this number isn’t a coincidence, we imagine). Purchases in the first two months of 2018 were 11% lower than a year earlier.

According to Bloomberg, after the tariffs were announced, soybean meal for September delivery on the Dalian Commodity Exchange climbed 2% to close at 3,265 yuan ($520) a ton. The most-active contract climbed more than 2.5 percent in the final 20 minutes of trading.

“Market participants might translate the temporary deposit of sorghum as the start of a new round of trade disputes between China and the U.S.,triggering concerns over soybeans,” said Monica Tu, an analyst at Shanghai JC Intelligence.

China said earlier this month that it planned to levy an additional 25 percent tariff on about $50 billion of U.S. imports including soybeans. The move matched the scale of proposed U.S. tariffs announced a day earlier. The U.S. is allowing 60 days for public feedback and hasn’t specified when the tariffs would take effect, leaving a window open for talks.

Hua Chunying, a spokeswoman for China’s Foreign Ministry, which has been one of the vocal mouthpieces for trade-related issues, said during the regular press briefing in Beijing that China is ready to impose trade countermeasures, and that, despite the US sending “confusing” signals about currency manipulation, the country is continuing to move ahead with its reforms.

The news hasn’t impacted US equity markets so far. But that could change as more US equity traders arrive at their desks.

end

4. EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

8. EMERGING MARKET

end

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

Euro/USA 1.2374 DOWN .0009/ 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 GREEN    

USA/JAPAN YEN 107.07 UP  0.025 (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 1.4332 DOWN .0008  (Brexit March 29/ 2017/ARTICLE 50 SIGNED/BREXIT FEES WILL BE CAPPED

USA/CAN 1.2555 DOWN .0012 (CANADA WORRIED ABOUT TRADE WITH THE USA WITH TRUMP ELECTION/ITALIAN EXIT AND GREXIT FROM EU/(TRUMP INITIATES LUMBER TARIFFS ON CANADA/CANADA HAS A HUGE HOUSEHOLD DEBT/GDP PROBLEM)

Early THIS TUESDAY morning in Europe, the Euro FELL by 9 basis points, trading now ABOVE the important 1.08 level RISING to 1.2365; / Last night Shanghai composite CLOSED DOWN 43.85 POINTS OR 1.41% /   Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 252.84 POINTS OR 0.83% /AUSTRALIA CLOSED UP .02% / EUROPEAN BOURSES  OPENED IN THE GREEN

The NIKKEI: this TUESDAY morning CLOSED UP 12.06 POINTS OR 0.06%

Trading from Europe and Asia

1/EUROPE OPENED  IN THE GREEN

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / : Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 252.84 POINTS OR 0.83%  / SHANGHAI CLOSED DOWN 43.85 POINTS OR 1.41%   /

Australia BOURSE CLOSED UP .02% 

Nikkei (Japan) CLOSED UP 12.06 POINTS OR 0.06%

INDIA’S SENSEX  IN THE GREEN 

Gold very early morning trading: 1343.10

silver:$16.64

Early TUESDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield: 2.8359% !!! UP 1  IN POINTS from MONDAY night in basis points and it is trading WELL ABOVE resistance at 2.27-2.32%. (POLICY FED ERROR)/ 

The 30 yr bond yield 3.0350 UP 1  IN BASIS POINTS from MONDAY night. (POLICY FED ERROR)/

USA dollar index early  TUESDAY morning: 89.45 UP 3  CENT(S) from MONDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers TUESDAY MORNING

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

And now your closing TUESDAY NUMBERS \1: 00 PM

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 1.617% DOWN 3  in basis point(s) yield from MONDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: +.0.045% DOWN 1/5    in basis points yield from MONDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.221% DOWN 2  IN basis point yield from MONDAY/

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.759  DOWN 5  POINTS in basis point yield from MONDAY/

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 54 points HIGHER than Spain.

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD:FALLS TO +.507%   IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY

END

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

IMPORTANT CURRENCY CLOSES FOR TUESDAY

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

Euro/USA 1.2342 DOWN .0041 (Euro DOWN 41 Basis points/ represents to DRAGHI A COMPLETE POLICY FAILURE/

USA/Japan: 107.08 UP 0.035 Yen DOWN 4 basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.4289 DOWN .0050( POUND DOWN 50 BASIS POINTS)

USA/Canada 1.2549 DOWN  .0017 Canadian dollar UP 17 Basis points AS OIL FELL TO $66.25

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

This afternoon, the Euro was DOWN 41 to trade at 1.2342

The Yen FELL to 107.08 for a LOSS of 4 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 50 basis points, trading at 1.4289/

The Canadian dollar ROSE by 17 basis points to 1.2549/ WITH WTI OIL FALLING TO : $66.25

The USA/Yuan closed AT 6.2782
the 10 yr Japanese bond yield closed at +.045%  DOWN 1/5   IN BASIS POINTS / yield/
Your closing 10 yr USA bond yield DOWN  1 IN basis points from MONDAY at 2.8304% //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic USA 30 yr bond yield: 3.0214  DOWN 1     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,89.64  UP 21 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 TUESDAY: 1:00 PM EST

London: CLOSED UP 27.85 POINTS OR 0.39%
German Dax :CLOSED UP 194,16 POINTS OR 1.57%
Paris Cac CLOSED UP 40.58  POINTS OR 0.71%
Spain IBEX CLOSED UP 37.80 POINTS OR 0.39%

Italian MIB: CLOSED UP 319.73 POINTS OR 1.37%

The Dow closed UP  213.99 POINTS OR 0.87%

NASDAQ UP  124.81 Points OR 1.74% 4.00 PM EST

WTI Oil price; 66.25 1:00 pm;

Brent Oil: 71.39 1:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN ROUBLE CROSS: 61.549 UP 41/100 ROUBLES/DOLLAR (ROUBLE LOWER BY 41 BASIS PTS)

TODAY THE GERMAN YIELD FALLS TO +.507% 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:$66.47

BRENT: $71.50

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: 2.8212%   THIS RAPID DECENT IN YIELD IS ALSO VERY DANGEROUS/RECESSION COMING

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 3.0086%/

EURO/USA DOLLAR CROSS: 1.2375 DOWN .0009  (DOWN 9 BASIS POINTS)

USA/JAPANESE YEN:107.00 DOWN 0.046/ YEN UP 5 BASIS POINTS/ very dangerous as yen carry traders are getting killed/yen continues to rise despite the NYSE rising. however gold is now breaking away from yen influence.

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 89.49 UP 6 cent(s)/dangerous as the lower the dollar the higher the inflation.

The British pound at 5 pm: Great Britain Pound/USA: 1.4292: DOWN 0.0047  (FROM LAST NIGHT DOWN 47 POINTS)

Canadian dollar: 1.2549 UP 17 BASIS pts

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: +0.507%


VOLATILITY INDEX:  15.28  CLOSED  DOWN  1.28

LIBOR 3 MONTH DURATION: 2.3551%  ..LIBOR HAS INCREASED FOR 48 CONSECUTIVE DAYS. 

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

TRADING IN GRAPH FORM FOR THE DAY

Investors Panic-Buy Tech, Dump Banks As VIX & Yield Curve Collapse

The Treasury yield curve is collapsing…

But because stocks are up…

This is the message from the mainstream media…

Nasdaq led the way today, decoupling from everything as US cash markets opened…

But for now – Lobbing bombs at another country is a buying-panic-inspiring moment once again…

On the day Nasdaq was en fuego, Trannies were down on the day as airlines fell)

Bob Pisani explains today’s rally: “The important thing is if you take Syria and China trade wars out of the headlines, you get back to the real market based on earnings” – hmm, Robert, banks are down on good earnings, and are we supposed to believe that Syria and trade wars are over?

All major US equity indices are now back in the green for 2018…

Netflix sparked a buying panic in tech stocks broadly…

Head and Shoulders anyone?

We do note that NFLX slipped back to close below its all-time intraday high…

And even more notable, despite blockbuster Goldman earnings – banks underperformed – sending the tech/financials ratio to its highest since June 2000…

Bank stocks are not lovin’ the yield curve collapse (or the plunge in vol!)…

Southwest was whacked after the awful events in Philly…

VIX tumbled to a 14 handle once again…

With the term structure normalized…

And if the historical relationship between VIX and the yield curve holds, then this dip in vol is for buying…

And bonds are not lovin’ the exuberant tech buying-panic…

For the second day in a row, Treasuries were sold overnight and bid through the US session…

With 30Y Yields back below 3.00% once again…

And the yield curve is in freefall…

The Dollar Index spiked in early trading as German economic ‘hope’ collapsed (and EUR tumbled)… and extended gains on Mnuchin’s walk back of Trump FX tweet…

Meanwhile The Hong Kong Dollar just won’t budge from its lower peg band limit…

Despite headlines about NY AG probes, Cryptos held on to the week’s gains as Tax Day passes…

Commodities dropped overnight, but rallied back to end around unchanged on the day…

But one commodity is on fire (thanks to Washington’s Russia sanctions)…

Bonus Chart: German Stocks soared today – to the highest since early Fed – as Economic ‘hope’ crashed to the lowest since 2012!!

Thank You Mr.Draghi! ECB’s CSPP program was launched in June 2006.

Bonus Clip…

Rudolf E. Havenstein@RudyHavenstein

Live stream of the Fed’s balance sheet unwind pic.twitter.com/5xIh1f8dYn

Rudolf E. Havenstein@RudyHavenstein

BREAKING: FOMC, SEEN HERE IN WHITE SEDAN, EXECUTES FED ‘EXIT STRATEGY’ pic.twitter.com/M0xgRrJbX1

END

USA MORNING DATA

Although housing starts and permits rebound in March the general 2018 housing scene is not very promising;

(courtesy zerohedge)

Housing Starts/Permits Rebound In March Led By Rental Renaissance

After plunging in February, Housing Starts and Permits were expected to recover in March and while both showed increases MoM (and upward revisions to Feb data), Starts disappointed expectations, extending the Housing market’s disappointing streak. The gains for both were driven by a rental nation renaissance (multi-family units up, single-family units down).

The flip-flopping nature of the Starts/Permits data continues with Starts +1.9% MoM in March (below expectations of a 2.5% rise) and Permits up 1.9% MoM (beating expectations of unchanged)…

As a reminder Starts were down 7.0% in March (before being dramatically upwardly revised to a 3.3% drop) and Permits tumbled 5.7% in Feb (before being revised up to a 4.1% drop).

Single family starts (SAAR) dropped 3.7% from  900k to 867K, multifamily starts rose 16.1% from 378K to 439K

Single family permits (SAAR) dropped -5.5% from  889k to 840K, multifamily permits rose 22.9% from 385K to 473K

Overall the housing sector’s data in 2018 has been notably disappointing…

end
Industrial production rises better than expected at .5% MONTH/MONTH but that was due to a huge rise in utility usage because of the cold weather.  Everything else was down
(courtesy zerohedge)

Industrial Production Jumps Most In 6 Years Thanks To Cold Weather

Industrial Production rose a better than expected 0.5% MoM in March. However, the rise in IP was driven by a huge 3.1% MoM spike in Utilities after being suppressed in February by warmer-than-normal temperatures.

On a year-over-year basis, that is a 4.26% rise – the biggest annual gain since Feb 2012.

But a closer inspection of the chart above shows that US Industrial Production has only just managed to top its 2014 peak – “recovery”?

We also note that, as @GreekFire23 points out, it is amazing how much of our economy is driven by the auto industry:70% of the entire retail sales gain yesterday and 20% of the entire annual manufacturing growth today.

The big driver of March’s gain was a 3.1% spike in Utilities (after a 5.1% plunge in Feb due to warmer-than-expected weather) with the biggest spike of all in NatGas Utes (up 15.6% MoM in March)…

Manufacturing Production growth slowed notably from an upwardly revised +1.5% MoM in Feb to just +0.1% MoM in March (and Mining also slowed dramatically)…

US Economic output still has work to do to catch up with the market’s lofty hopes…

end
Amazing: 24 hours later Kudlow denies the Washington Post story of no new additional Russian sanctions. Kudlow states that here are more Russian sanctions under consideration
(courtesy zerohedge)

Kudlow Denies WaPo: “Additional Russia Sanctions Being Considered”; Russian ETFs Slump

Russian ETFs are sliding after National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow denied WaPo’s report  that President Trump was halting Russian sanctions, instead confirming that there is “no confusion” about Russian sanctions in The White House – more Russian sanctions are under consideration…

The opening ramp in Russian stocks (from the WaPo story) have now been erased…

As a reminder, administration officials said Monday that it was unlikely Trump would approve more punitive measures against Russia without another triggering event.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement that “We are considering additional sanctions on Russia and a decision will be made in the near future.”

SWAMP STORIES
My goodness: how on earth did Rod Rosenstein not recuse himself.
(courtesyhttp://www.infiltratednation.com/2018/03/meet-hillary-clintons-other-much-more.html).
and special thanks to Robert H for sending this to us.

Lisa Barsoomian, wife of Rod Rosenstein and protege of James Comey and Robert Mueller

With her boss R. Craig Lawrence, Lisa Barsoomian represented Bill Clinton in 1998.  Lawrence also represented: Robert Mueller three times; James Comey five times; Barack Obama 45 times; Kathleen Sebelius 56 times; Bill Clinton 40 times; and Hillary Clinton 17 times between 1998 and 2017.  Barsoomian herself represented the FBI at least five times.  See: https://www.fbcoverup.com/ docs/library/2017-05-22-Lisa- Barsoomian-represented- William-J-Clinton-98-cv-01459- TPJ-06-11-1998-PACER-accessed- May-22-2017.pdf.

Someone purged Barsoomian court documents for her Clinton representation in Hamburg vs. Clinton in 1998 and its appeal in 1999 from the DC District and Appeals court dockets.  See  https://www.fbcoverup.com/ docs/library/2017-05-20-R- Craig-Lawrence-DC-Appeals- Court-Docket-PACER-accessed- May-20-2017.pdf .  Someone also purged internet info pertaining to Barsoomian.  Historically, this indicates that the individual is a protected CIA operative.

Additionally, Barsoomian has specialized in opposing Freedom of Information Act requests on behalf of the intelligence community.  And, although Barsoomian has been involved in hundreds of cases representing the DC Office of the US Attorney, her email address is atNIH.gov.  This is a tactic routinely used by the CIA to protect an operative by using another government organization to shield their activities.

This all matters because Barsoomian is the wife of incumbent Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein.  How could all of this background and conflict of interest not have influenced Rosenstein?  Both Barsoomian and Rosenstein owe their careers as US attorneys to Mueller, Obama, Bush, and the Clintons.

Thus, for all of these reasons and many more, Rosenstein’s impartiality is impossible.  He has no business involving himself in the Hillary Clinton-DNC funded Steel dossier and/or the ongoing Russia investigation by Special Counsel Mueller.  Rosenstein is even more conflicted than his boss, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who recused himself.  See: https://americans4innovation. blogspotcom/2017/05/proof- robert-mueller-cannot-be.html# rosenstein-conflict.

Alexander Downer, Australian High Commissioner to UK, who reported to FBI about drunken boasting of George Papodopoulous in a London pub re alleged peddling by Russian operatives of Hillary’s hacked emails

Very insightful about London-based Hakluyt & Co. (founded in 1995 by three former British intelligence operatives), but especially about its affiliation with Alexander Downer, Australian High Commissioner to the UK and a long-time Clinton crony, who informed the FBI about the drunken boasting of George Papodopoulous in a London pub concerning Russian intel operatives allegedly peddling Hillary’s hacked emails.  See:
http://www.infiltratednation.com/2018/03/meet-hillary-clintons-other-much-more.html.

END

Trump is very worried about what is seized in the Cohen raid

(courtesy zerohedge)

Trump’s Biggest Headache: “What’s In Those Seized Records?”

Much ink has been spilled about why an indictment of Trump attorney Michael Cohen could be a serious problem for the first family. As the only non-Trump dealmaker employed at the Trump Organization – and with a broad portfolio of responsibilities that has won him recognition as “Trump’s Roy Donovan” – Trump is reportedly worried that Cohen knows where “the bodies” (aka how much the Trumps knew about the activities of some of their less-savory partners from the former Soviet Union) are buried.

Trump

Since the raid, we imagine that several reports about evidence seized by the Feds have only served to heighten anxieties at the White House. Perhaps the most concerning was a report by CNN that Cohen had surreptitiously recorded conversations of private negotiations with attorneys for President Trump’s adversaries – which has raised questions about whether Cohen ever recorded his conversations with Trump. ABC later reported that audio recordings made by Cohen had been seized by the FBI.

The federal raid, carried out a week ago in New York City, sought bank records, information on Cohen’s dealing in the taxi industry, Cohen’s communications with the Trump campaign and information on payments he made in 2016 to former Playboy model Karen McDougal and to Daniels, both of whom allege relationships with Trump, people familiar with the raid told the Associated Press. The court proceedings Monday dealt with who gets to look at Cohen’s seized documents and devices before they are turned over to prosecutors.

Of course, as NBC News points out, Cohen could’ve made these recordings 100% legally – that is, if the conversations being recorded took place in New York State, which has a “one-party” consent recording law (of course, stealthily recording conversations with another lawyer could get Cohen disbarred – but even that is unclear).

But in a story apparently filed from Air Force One during President Trump’s trip to Mar-a-Lago, where he is meeting today with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the Associated Press reports that West Wing staffers are now more worried about the potential aftershocks of the Cohen raid – including a likely criminal prosecution of Cohen by the Southern District of New York – than the outcome of Robert Mueller’s Russia probe.

Many in the White House view the aftershocks of the Cohen raid as potentially more threatening than Mueller’s Russia probe, fearful of what skeletons may be in the lawyer’s closets, according to five officials and outside allies who all spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.

“I agree with the consensus forming that it’s very dangerous for the president, probably the most serious thing yet,” said Sol Wisenberg, a defense attorney who was a deputy independent counsel during the Starr special counsel investigation into Clinton. “Even if you shut Mueller down some way, how do you shut down the Southern District (federal court)?”

While Cohen was a marginal figure during the Trump campaign, he has long been a power center in the Trump Organization. And it’s not only Trump’s aides who recognize the threat that a cooperative Cohen could pose: Trump is reportedly growing increasingly angry.

Trump’s anger at the probe has intensified, with him musing publicly about firing Mueller and the man who authorized the probe, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Those around Trump have hoped that this week’s visit to Mar-a-Lago, where he is generally happier, along with the tightly scheduled summit with Abe, would somewhat distract him from Cohen and from Comey’s ongoing publicity tour.

But White House aides have also expressed worry that they can control Trump less at his palatial Florida estate, where he is known to seek out counsel from club members and get revved up by their at-times provocative advice. One recent presidential dinner guest was Hannity, a longtime Trump ally whose connection to Cohen shed more light on the attorney who was more than just a lawyer for Trump.

Regardless of the outcome, the Cohen raid has already metastasized into a legal circus, as Cohen’s legal team is pushing to either secure a preliminary review of the documents seized by the bureau – or a review by a trusted third party – before they are handed over to federal prosecutors.

Yesterday’s hearing before Kimba “the Love Judge” Wood, a contender for attorney general under President Bill Clinton and a friend of billionaire investor George Soros, has ruled out Cohen’s lawyers push for a preliminary review, though it appears Wood is leaning toward appointing a “Master Partner” who would review the documents for privileged content.

And that’s only the beginning: Expect more leaks to follow, especially if Trump’s attorneys manage to remove a sizable portion of the “evidence” by successfully declaring it privileged.

end
David Stockman talks about the failed Empire first American policy:
(courtesy David Stockman/ContraCorner)

David Stockman: R.I.P. America First

Authored by David Stockman via Contra Corner blog,

When the Cold War officially ended in 1991, Washington could have pivoted back to the pre-1914 status quo ante. That is, to a national security policy of America First because there was literally no significant military threat left on the planet.

Post-Soviet Russia was an economic basket case that couldn’t even meet its military payroll and was melting down and selling the Red Army’s tanks and artillery for scrap. China was just emerging from the Great Helmsman’s economic, political and cultural depredations and had embraced Deng Xiaoping proclamation that “to get rich is glorious”.

The implications of the Red Army’s fiscal demise and China’s electing the path of export mercantilism and Red Capitalism were profound.

Russia couldn’t invade the American homeland in a million years and China chose the route of flooding America with shoes, sheets, shirts, toys and electronics. So doing, it made the rule of the communist elites in Beijing dependent upon keeping the custom of 4,000 Wal-Marts in America, not bombing them out of existence.

In a word, god’s original gift to America – the great moats of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans – had again become the essence of its national security.

After 1991, therefore, there was no nation on the planet that had the remotest capability to mount a conventional military assault on the U.S. homeland; or that would not have bankrupted itself attempting to create the requisite air and sea-based power projection capabilities—a resource drain that would be vastly larger than even the $700 billion the US currently spends on its global armada.

Indeed, in the post-cold war world the only thing the US needed was a modest conventional capacity to defend the shorelines and airspace against any possible rogue assault and a reliable nuclear deterrent against any state foolish enough to attempt nuclear blackmail.

Needless to say, those capacities had already been bought and paid for during the cold war. The triad of  minutemen ICBMs, Trident SLBMs (submarines launched nuclear missiles) and long-range stealth bombers cost only a few ten billions annually for operations and maintenance and were more than adequate for the task of deterrence.

Likewise, conventional defense of the U.S. shoreline and airspace against rogues would not require a fraction of today’s 1.3 million active uniformed force—to say nothing of the 800,000 additional reserves and national guard forces and  the 765,000 DOD civilians on top of that. Rather than funding 2.9 million personnel, the whole job of national security under a homeland-based America First concept could be done with less than 500,000 military and civilian payrollers.

In fact, much of the 475,000 US army could be eliminated and most of the Navy’s carrier strike groups and power projection capabilities could be mothballed. So, too, the air force’s homeland defense missions could be accomplished for well less than $50 billion per annum compared to the current $145 billion.

Overall, the constant dollar defense budget (2017$) was $610 billion in 1989 when the cold war ended and the Soviet Union disappeared from the face of the earth. Had Washington pivoted to an America First national security policy at the time, defense spending could have been downsized to perhaps $250 billion per year.

Instead, the Imperial City went in an opposite direction and ended up embracing a de facto policy of Empire First. The latter will cost $700 billion during the current year and is heading for $900 billion annually a few years down the road.

In a word, Empire First easily consumes one-half trillion dollars more in annual budgetary resources than would America First. And that giant barrel of weapons contracts, consulting and support jobs, lobbying booty and Congressional pork explains everything you need to know about why the Swamp is so deep and intractable.

Obviously, it’s also why Imperial Washington has appointed itself global policeman. Functioning as the gendarme of the planet is the only possible justification for the extra $500 billion per year cost of Empire First.

For example, why does the US still deploy 90,000 US forces and their dependents in Japan and Okinawa and 30,000 in South Korea?

These two counties have a combined GDP of $7 trillion—or 235X more than North Korea and they are light-years ahead of the latter in technology and military capability. Also, they don’t go around the world engaging in regime change, thereby spooking fear on the north side of the DMZ.

Accordingly, Japan and South Korea could more than provide for their own national security in a manner they see fit without any help whatsoever from Imperial Washington. That’s especially the case because North Korea would seek a rapprochement and economic help, and their relationship with China is based on business, not military confrontation.

Indeed, sixty-five years after the unnecessary war in Korea ended, there is only one reason why the Kim family is still in power in Pyongyang and why the Fat Boy now noisily brandishes his incipient nuclear weapons and missiles. To wit, it’s because the Empire still occupies the Korean peninsula and surrounds its waters with more lethal firepower than was brought to bear against the industrial might of Nazi Germany during the whole of WWII.

And speaking of Germany, why is it that its modest $60 billion defense budget amounts to only 1.5%of GDP if Russia—-with a defense budget of $46 billion—is some kind of expansionist military threat?

The Germans clearly don’t believe it and see Russia as a vital market for exports and as a source of supply for natural gas, other natural resources and food stuffs. Besides, with a GDP of $4 trillion or nearly 3X Russia’s $1.6 trillion GDP, Germany could more than handle its own defenses if Russia should ever become foolish enough to threaten it.

From there you get to the even more preposterous case for the Empire’s NATO outposts in eastern Europe. The history books are absolutely clear that in 1989 George H. W. Bush promised Gorbachev that NATO would not be expanded by a “single inch” in return for his acquiescence to German unification.

At the time, NATO had 16 member nations bound by the Article 5 obligation of mutual defense, but when the Soviet Union and the Red Army perished, there was nothing left to defend against. NATO should have declared “mission accomplished” and dissolved itself.

Instead, it has become a political jackhammer for Empire First policies by expanding to 29 nations—many of them on Russia’s doorstep.

Yet if your perception is not distorted by Washington’s self-justifying imperial beer-goggles, the question is obvious. Exactly what is gained for the safety and security of the citizens of Lincoln NE or Springfield MA by obtaining the defense services of the pint-sized militaries of Latvia (6,000), Croatia (14,500), Estonia (6,400), Slovenia (7,300) or Montenegro (1,950)?

Indeed, the whole post-1991 NATO expansion is so preposterous as a matter of national security that its true function as a fig-leaf for Empire First fairly screams outloud. Not one of these pint-sized nations would matter for US security if they decided to have a cozier relationship with Russia—voluntarily or not so voluntarily.

But the point is, there is no threat in eastern Europe unless such as Montenegro, Slovenia, or Latvia became the invasion route to Russian occupation of Germany, France, the Benelux and England. And that’s just plain crazy.

Yet aside from that utterly far-fetched and economically and militarily impossible scenario, there is no reason whatsoever for the US to be in a mutual defense pact with any of the new, and, for that matter, old NATO members.

And that gets us to most ridiculous NATO fig leaf of all. The patently bogus claim that Russia’s self-evidently defensive actions in Crimea and the Donbas (eastern Ukraine) prove that it is an aggressive expansionist. But on that score, Washington’s imperial beer goggles are utterly blind to history and geopolitical logic.

Sevastopol in Crimea has been the homeport of the Russian Naval Fleet under czars and commissars alike and was purchased from the Ottoman’s for good money by Catherine the Great in 1783. It is the site of one of Russia greatest patriotic events—-the defeat of the English invaders in 1854 made famous by Tennyson’s Charge of the Light Brigade—-and is 80% Russian speaking.

It only technically became part of Ukraine during a Kruschev inspired shuffle in 1954 driven by his maneuvers to consolidate power in post-Stalin Soviet Union. To wit:

On April 26, 1954. The decree of the Presidium of the USSR Supreme Soviet transferring the Crimea Oblast from the Russian SFSR to the Ukrainian SSR…..Taking into account the integral character of the economy, the territorial proximity and the close economic and cultural ties between the Crimea Province and the Ukrainian SSR, the Presidium of the USSR Supreme Soviet decrees:

To approve the joint presentation of the Presidium of the Russian SFSR Supreme Soviet and the Presidium of the Ukrainian SSR Supreme Soviet on the transfer of the Crimea Province from the Russian SFSR to the Ukrainian SSR.

That’s right. The dead-hand of the Soviet presidium most be defended at all costs by Washington because the security of North Dakota depends upon it!

The fact is, only 10% of the Crimean population is Ukrainian speaking, and it was the coup on the streets of Kiev in February 2014 by extremist anti-Russian Ukrainian nationalists and proto-fascists that caused the Russian speakers in Crimea to panic and Moscow to become alarmed about the status of its historic naval base.

In a word, 83% of eligible Crimeans turned out to vote and 97% of those approved cancelling the 1954 edict of the Soviet Presidium and rejoining mother Russia during the March 2014 referendum. There is absolutely no evidence that the 80% of Crimeans who thus voted to sever their historically short-lived affiliation with Ukraine were threatened or coerced by Moscow.

Indeed, what they actually feared were the anti-Russian edicts coming out of Kiev in the aftermath of the Washington funded, supported and instantly recognized overthrow of the legally elected government. And exactly the same thing is true of the overwhelmingly Russian-speaking populations of the Donbas.

After all, the good folks of that industrial heartland of the former Soviet Union had always been an integral part of its iron, steel, chemical and munitions industries, and, indeed, their grandparents had been put there by Stalin because most native Ukrainians had not cottoned to his bloody rule.

By the same token, Uncle Joe’s 1930s Russian transplants forever hated the Ukrainian nationalists who rampaged though their towns and homes in the Donbas with Hitler’s Wehrmacht on the way to Stalingrad.

So it boils down to this: By Washington’s edict the grand-sons and grand-daughters of Stalin’s industrial army in the Donbas will be ruled by the grand-sons and grand-daughters of Hitler’s collaborators in Kiev, whether they like it or not.

Likewise, the 1954 edict of the Soviet Presidium is now apparently under the stewardship of Washington. So the Crimeans’ short-lived marriage to Ukraine will be enforced with sanctions, threats and demonizations of Moscow—notwithstanding an 80% referendum against it.

Here’s the thing. You simply can’t make up $500 billion worth of phony reasons for an Empire First national security policy without going off the deep-end. You have to invent missions, mandates and threats that are just plain stupid (like the purported Russian “occupation” of Crimea) or flat out lies (like Saddam’s alleged WMDs).

Indeed, you must invent, nourish and enforce an entire universal narrative based on completely implausible and invalid propositions, such as the “indispensable nation” meme and the claim that global peace and stability depend overwhelmingly on Washington’s leadership?

Is there not a more cruel joke than that?

Was the Washington inflicted carnage and genocide in Vietnam a case of “American leadership” and making the world more peaceful or stable?

Did the two wars against Iraq accomplish anything accept destroy the tenuous peace between the Sunni, Shiite and Kurds, thereby opening up the gates of hell and the bloody rampages of ISIS?

Did the billions Washington illegally channeled into the rebel and jihadist forces in Syria do anything except destroy the country, create millions of refugees and force the Assad regime to engage in tit-for-tat brutalities, as well as call-in aid from his Iranian, Russian and Hezbollah allies.

In a word, Imperial Washington’s over-arching narratives and the instances of its specific interventions alike rest on a threadbare and implausible foundation; and more often than not, they consist of arrogant fabrications and claims that are an insult to the intelligence of anyone paying even loose attention to the facts.

Then again, Imperial Washington no longer cares about facts, logic, history or truth. At the time of the Bush War on Saddam’s WMD’s, Karl Rove explained the Empire’s new Creed without pulling any punches.

“That’s not the way the world really works anymore. We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors … and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

There you have it. And Rove is no out-of-the-way academic scribbler inventing some high-flutin’ rationalization for American global hegemony. To the contrary, he’s a lifetime Swamp creature, leading beltway racketeer and the strategic brain trust of the GOP establishment.

Needless to say, Washington has yet again created its “own reality” with respect to its hideously unjustified bombing attack on Syria last Friday night. So doing, it literally took our dim-witted President captive by exploiting his macho delusions, thereby decreeing that no one—not even the Donald— may brook with the War Party narrative.

Yet the case for launching a spanking attack on Assad was so threadbare that it might as well have been derived from a Washington claim of full spectrum dominance over planet Earth. Or as one astute observer noted:

(Those who have) been properly following the situation in Syria for the last few years will know the truth, which is that the US and its allies have been arming, funding and supporting Islamist terrorists, and using them as proxies to topple the Syrian Government. Not “moderate rebels”, as the dutiful stenographers in the Mainstream Media have been telling you, but fanatical head-choppers who want to see Syria turned into a Wahhabi state replete with Sharia Law.

In Part 2, we will assemble the evidence that if the Douma chlorine attack actually occurred, it was likely a false flag attack staged by the rebels. After all, the evidence for it comes from unverified social media accounts, the White Helmets and the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS).

The latter is a tool of the Sunni Muslim Brotherhood, which for better or worse had been banned from Syria by Assad’s father way back in the early 1980’s owing to its opposition to the secularist rule of the Alawite-based coalition of nationalists, socialists, Christians and other non-Sunni minorities.

Not surprisingly, SAMS has only operated in jihadist and rebel occupied territories—just as has been the case with the vaunted White Helmets, which have been repeatedly caught in the act of staging and fabricating false flag attacks.

We posted a compilation of 20 such incidents from social media yesterday, but here are three which give the flavor. In the last one, for example, it is obvious that the mainstream media, which played this image over and over, was duped by chicken blood!

In the very best case for Washington, we have a case of dueling liars. Why would you believe the White Helmets, but not Halil Ajiji, a medical student who worked at the only functioning hospital in Douma?

He described the origin of the chemical victims being desperately sprayed in a hospital as follows:

On April 8, a bomb hit a building. The upper floors were damaged and a fire broke at the lower floors. Victims of that bombing were brought to us. People from the upper floors had smoke poisoning. We treated them, based on their suffocation.”

Ajij said that a man unknown to him came and said there was a chemical attack and panic ensued. “Relatives of the victims started dousing each other with water. Other people, who didn’t seem to have medical training, started administering anti-asthma medicine to children. We didn’t see any patient with symptoms of a chemical weapons poisoning,” he said.

The point is, before Washington turned loose the cruise missiles and bombers, it could have sent a delegation to Douma with the blessing of Putin and Assad, and interviewed Ajij and several thousand more to find out what actually happened.

Unlike all of the past “gas attack” incidents, this one happened in what is now safe government controlled territory, and any Washington delegation of investigators could have even been accompanied by CNN’s own Baghdad Bob—that is, Wolf Blitzer himself.

Perhaps the latter would have ascertained whether the chemical protection gear pictured below and found in an abandoned rebel site was just staged by the Assad government; and  also whether or not the rooms full of rockets and components also pictured below were used by the rebels strictly for killing people with good old fashioned shrapnel and percussion effects, rather than chlorine gas.

Likewise, maybe Washington could have demanded that the chief paint and plastics engineer at the Barzeh research center give international investigators who were arriving from the OPCW the next morning a tour of every room in that largely empty facility before they blew it to smithereens with 71 missiles.

After all, the man stood on the rubble within an hour or two of the attack and was not overcome with any kind of toxic agent chemical release. Thus said, Mr. Said Said,

The building had three storeys: a basement, ground floor, and second floor,” said Said Said, an engineer who identified himself as head of the centre’s paint and plastics department.

“If there were chemical weapons, we would not be able to stand here. I’ve been here since 5:30 am in full health — I’m not coughing,” he added.

Said said the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons had visited the site in Barzeh in recent years and had declared it free of any toxic weapons.

“The OPCW used to stay in the two upper rooms, and use the labs, and we would cooperate with them completely,” he said.

“The OPCW has proven in two reports that this building and the centre as a whole are empty and do not produce any chemical weapons.”

We leave it to the French, however, to spill the beans. Their proof was surmise, and social media pictures!

 On the basis of this overall assessment and on the intelligence collected by our services, and in the absence to date of chemical samples analysed by our own laboratories, France therefore considers (i) that, beyond possible doubt, a chemical attack was carried out against civilians at Douma on 7 April 2018; and (ii) that there is no plausible scenario other than that of an attack by Syrian armed forces as part of a wider offensive in the Eastern Ghouta enclave.

Non-governmental medical organizations active in Ghouta (the Syrian American Medical Society) and the Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations), whose information is generally reliable, publicly stated that strikes had targeted in particular local medical infrastructure on 6 and 7 April.

The French services analysed the testimonies, photos and videos that spontaneously appeared on specialized websites, in the press and on social media in the hours and days following the attack.

Testimonies obtained by theFrench services were also analysed. After examining the videos and images of victims published online, they were able to conclude with a high degree of confidence that the vast majority are recent and not fabricated. The spontaneous circulation of these images across all social networks confirms that they were not video montages or recycled images. Lastly, some of the entities that published this information are generally considered reliable.

“Some of the entities” that were the basis for attacking a country that has never harmed France, England or the US are “generally considered reliable”. Goodness gracious me!

Fortunately, General Mattis talked the Donald into attacking several nothing-burger sites as we will document in Part 2. Meanwhile, Cool Hand Vlad apparently took the weekend in stride, popcorn in hand.

Perhaps that was the cruelest insult of all to Imperial Washington. And perhaps the absolute bunkum of these repeated video-game bombing missions will finally alert America to the fraud that is Empire First.

end

I will  see you  WEDNESDAY night

HARVEY

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: