MARCH 7/GOLD DOWN $1.40 TO $1285//SILVER DOWN 4 CENTS TO $15.04//FOR 5TH CONSECUTIVE DAY HUGE QUEUE JUMPING AT THE SILVER COMEX//AT THE GOLD COMEX GOLD CONTINUES TO VACATE THE PREMISES//SEM CONDUCTOR ORDERS FROM CHINA FALTERING//SEISMIC ACTIVITY DETECTED IN NORTH KOREA//DRAGHI GOES DOVISH BY ANNOUNCING ANOTHER tLTRO//ARGENTINIAN PESO HITS ALL TIME LOW AT 42.5 PESOS PER DOLLAR//

 

 

 

GOLD: $1285.60 DOWN $1.40 (COMEX TO COMEX CLOSING)

Silver:   $15.04 DOWN 4 CENTS (COMEX TO COMEX CLOSING)

Closing access prices:

Gold :  $1285.40

 

silver: $15.02

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For comex gold and silver:

MARCH

 

 

 

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR  MAR CONTRACT: 8 NOTICE(S) FOR 800 OZ (0.0240 tonnes)

TOTAL NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED SO FAR:  310 NOTICES FOR 31000 OZ  (.9642 TONNES)

 

 

SILVER

 

FOR MARCH

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

 

22 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR 110,000  OZ/

 

total number of notices filed so far this month: 4722 for 23,610,000

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Bitcoin: OPENING MORNING TRADE $3892:UP $2

 

Bitcoin: FINAL EVENING TRADE: $3887  UP 26

 

end

 

XXXX

JPMorgan or Goldman Sachs are taking a huge issuance (stopping) of gold at the comex.

today 4/8

EXCHANGE: COMEX
CONTRACT: MARCH 2019 COMEX 100 GOLD FUTURES
SETTLEMENT: 1,284.900000000 USD
INTENT DATE: 03/06/2019 DELIVERY DATE: 03/08/2019
FIRM ORG FIRM NAME ISSUED STOPPED
____________________________________________________________________________________________
657 C MORGAN STANLEY 1
661 C JP MORGAN 4
686 C INTL FCSTONE 3
737 C ADVANTAGE 1 3
905 C ADM 4
____________________________________________________________________________________________

TOTAL: 8 8
MONTH TO DATE: 310

Let us have a look at the data for today

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In silver, the total OPEN INTEREST ROSE BY A CONSIDERABLE SIZED 1114 CONTRACTS FROM 190,024 UP TO 191,329 WITH YESTERDAY’S 2 CENT LOSS IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX. TODAY WE ARRIVED FURTHER FROM  AUGUST’S 2018  RECORD SETTING OPEN INTEREST OF 244,196 CONTRACTS. WE ALWAYS WITNESS A CONTRACTION IN TOTAL OI AS WE APPROACH FIRST DAY NOTICE AND IT SEEMS THE CULPRIT IS THE FORCED LIQUIDATION OF SPREADERS.

WE HAVE ALSO WITNESSED A LARGE AMOUNT OF PHYSICAL METAL STAND FOR COMEX DELIVERY AS WELL WE ARE WITNESSING CONSIDERABLE LONGS PACKING THEIR BAGS AND MIGRATING OVER TO LONDON IN GREATER NUMBERS IN THE FORM OF EFP’S.  WE WERE  NOTIFIED  THAT WE HAD A GOOD SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP:

0 EFP’S FOR MARCH,  0 FOR APRIL,  1141 FOR MAY, 0 FOR DECEMBER AND ZERO FOR ALL  OTHER MONTHS  AND THEREFORE TOTAL ISSUANCE: OF 1141 CONTRACTS. WITH THE TRANSFER OF 1141 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 1141 EFP CONTRACTS TRANSLATES INTO 10.96 MILLION OZ  ACCOMPANYING:

1.THE 2 CENT LOSS IN SILVER PRICE AT THE COMEX AND

2. THE STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES WHICH STOOD FOR DELIVERY IN THE LAST NINE MONTHS:

JUNE/2018. (5.420 MILLION OZ);

FOR JULY: 30.370 MILLION OZ

FOR AUG., 6.065 MILLION OZ

FOR SEPT. 39.505 MILLION  OZ S

FOR OCT.2.525 MILLION OZ.

FOR NOV:  A HUGE 7.440 MILLION OZ STANDING  AND

21.925 MILLION OZ FINALLY STAND FOR DECEMBER.

5.845 MILLION OZ STAND IN JANUARY.

2.955 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR FEBRUARY.

AND NOW: 25.325 MILLION OZ STANDING IN MARCH.

 

 

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

13,939 CONTRACTS (FOR 5 TRADING DAYS TOTAL 13,939 CONTRACTS) OR 69.70 MILLION OZ: (AVERAGE PER DAY: 2787 CONTRACTS OR 13.939 MILLION OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH OF MAR:  69.70 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON. THIS REPRESENTS AROUND 9.96% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION (EX CHINA EX RUSSIA)*  JUNE’S 345.43 MILLION OZ IS THE SECOND HIGHEST RECORDED ISSUANCE OF EFP’S AND IT FOLLOWED THE RECORD SET IN APRIL 2018 OF 385.75 MILLION OZ.

ACCUMULATION IN YEAR 2019 TO DATE SILVER EFP’S:          434.58    MILLION OZ.

JANUARY 2019 EFP TOTALS:                                                      217.455. MILLION OZ

FEB 2019 TOTALS:                                                                       147.4       MILLION OZ/

 

 

RESULT: WE HAD A GOOD SIZED INCREASE IN COMEX OI SILVER COMEX CONTRACTS OF 1305 WITH THE 2 CENT LOSS IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX /YESTERDAY..THE CME NOTIFIED US THAT WE HAD   GOOD SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 1466 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) .

TODAY WE GAINED A CONSIDERABLE SIZED: 2446 TOTAL OI CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:

i.e 1141 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS HEADED FOR LONDON  (EFP’s) TOGETHER WITH INCREASE OF 1305 OI COMEX CONTRACTS. AND ALL OF THIS  DEMAND HAPPENED WITH A 2 CENT LOSS IN PRICE OF SILVER  AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $15.08 WITH RESPECT TO YESTERDAY’S TRADING. YET WE HAD A GIGANTIC AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX FOR DELIVERY 

 

 

In ounces AT THE COMEX, the OI is still represented by JUST UNDER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 0.975 BILLION OZ TO BE EXACT or 139% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).

FOR THE NEW FRONT FEBRUARY MONTH/ THEY FILED AT THE COMEX: 22 NOTICE(S) FOR 110,000 OZ OF SILVER

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

AND NOW WE RECORD FOR POSTERITY ANOTHER ALL TIME RECORD OPEN INTEREST AT THE COMEX OF 244,196 CONTRACTS ON AUGUST 22/2018 AND AGAIN WHEN THIS RECORD WAS SET, THE PRICE OF SILVER WAS $14.78 AND LOWER IN PRICE THAN PREVIOUS RECORDS.

ON THE DEMAND SIDE WE HAVE THE FOLLOWING:

  1. HUGE AMOUNTS OF SILVER STANDING FOR DELIVERY  (MARCH/2018: 27 MILLION OZ , APRIL/2018 : 2.485 MILLION OZ  MAY: 36.285 MILLION OZ ; JUNE/2018  (5.420 MILLION OZ) , JULY 2018 FINAL AMOUNT STANDING: 30.370 MILLION OZ   )  FOR AUGUST 6.065 MILLION OZ. , SEPT:  A HUGE 39.505 MILLION OZ./ OCTOBER: 2,520,000 oz  NOV AT 7.440 MILLION OZ./ DEC. AT 21.925 MILLION OZ   JANUARY AT  5.825 MILLION OZ.AND FEB 2019:  2.955 MILLION OZ/AND NOW MARCH: 25.325 MILLION OZ/
  2. HUGE RECORD OPEN INTEREST IN SILVER 243,411 CONTRACTS (OR 1.217 BILLION OZ/ SET APRIL 9/2018) AND NOW AUGUST 22/2018:  244,196 CONTRACTS,  WITH A SILVER PRICE OF $14.78.
  3. HUGE ANNUAL EFP’S ISSUANCE EQUAL TO 2.9 BILLION OZ OR 400% OF SILVER ANNUAL PRODUCTION/2017
  4. RECORD SETTING EFP ISSUANCE FOR ANY MONTH IN SILVER; APRIL/2018/ 385.75 MILLION OZ/  AND THE SECOND HIGHEST RECORDED EFP ISSUANCE JUNE 2018 345.43 MILLION OZ

AND YET, WITH THE EXTREMELY HIGH EFP ISSUANCE, 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).

 

IN GOLD, THE OPEN INTEREST ROSE BY A HUGE SIZED 6825 CONTRACTS UP TO 478,136 DESPITE THE FALL IN THE COMEX GOLD PRICE/(A GAIN IN PRICE OF $3.30//YESTERDAY’S TRADING). HOWEVER…….

 

 

THE CME RELEASED THE DATA FOR EFP ISSUANCAND IT TOTALED A  STRONG SIZED 4012 CONTRACTS:

 

MARCH HAD AN ISSUANCE OF 0 CONTACTS  APRIL 4012 CONTRACTS,JUNE: 0 CONTRACTS DECEMBER: 0 CONTRACTS AND ALL OTHER MONTHS ZERO.  The NEW COMEX OI for the gold complex rests at 478,136. 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. . 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 GIGANTIC SIZED GAIN IN TOTAL CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES OF 10,837 CONTRACTS: 6825 OI CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX AND 4012 EFP OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON. THUS  TOTAL OI GAIN OF 10,837 CONTRACTS OR 1,08,700= 33.70 TONNES.

YESTERDAY WE HAD A GAIN IN THE PRICE OF GOLD TO THE TUNE OF $3.30.AND WITH THAT WE HAD A HUGE GAIN IN TONNAGE OF 33.70 TONNES.

 

 

 

 

YESTERDAY, WE HAD 7293 EFP’S ISSUED.

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S GOLD AT J.P. MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES: (EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF MARCH : 44,564 CONTRACTS OR 4,456,400 OZ OR 138.612 TONNES (5 TRADING DAYS AND THUS AVERAGING: 8913 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE STRONG SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :  THIS MONTH IN 5 TRADING DAYS IN  TONNES: 138.612 TONNES

TOTAL ANNUAL GOLD PRODUCTION, 2018, THROUGHOUT THE WORLD EX CHINA EX RUSSIA: 2555 TONNES

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS 138.612/2550 x 100% TONNES = 5.43% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION SO FAR IN DECEMBER ALONE.***

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S YEAR 2019 TO DATE:     1014.15  TONNES

JANUARY 2019 TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE;   531.20 TONNES

FEB 2019 TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE:             344.36 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 HUGE SIZED INCREASE IN OI AT THE COMEX OF 6825 WITH THE GAIN IN PRICING ($3.30) THAT GOLD UNDERTOOK YESTERDAY) //.WE ALSO HAD A GOOD SIZED NUMBER OF COMEX LONG TRANSFERRING TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 4012 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 4012 EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED, WE  HAD A GIGANTIC GAIN OF 12,776 CONTRACTS IN TOTAL OPEN INTEREST  ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:

4012 CONTRACTS MOVE TO LONDON AND 6825 CONTRACTS INCREASED AT THE COMEX. (IN TONNES, THE STRONG GAIN IN TOTAL OI EQUATES TO 33.70 TONNES). ..AND ALL OF THIS  DEMAND OCCURRED WITH THE GAIN OF $3.30 IN YESTERDAY’S TRADING AT THE COMEX

 

 

 

we had:  8 notice(s) filed upon for 800 oz of gold at the comex.

 

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

GLD...

 

WITH GOLD DOWN $1.40 TODAY 

 

NO ADDITIONS OR SUBTRACTIONS TODAY

 

 

INVENTORY RESTS AT 766.59 TONNES

 

 

TO ALL INVESTORS THINKING OF BUYING GOLD THROUGH THE GLD ROUTE: YOU ARE MAKING A TERRIBLE MISTAKE AS THE CROOKS ARE USING WHATEVER GOLD COMES IN TO ATTACK BY SELLING THAT GOLD.  IT SURE SEEMS TO ME THAT THE GOLD OBLIGATIONS AT THE GLD EXCEED THEIR INVENTORY

 

SLV/

WITH SILVER DOWN 4 CENTS  IN PRICE  TODAY:

 

NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV..///

 

 

 

 

 

/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308,503 MILLION OZ.

 

 

end

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

1. Today, we had the open interest in SILVER ROSE BY A GOOD SIZED 1305 CONTRACTS from 190,024 UP TO 191,490 AND FURTHER FROM THE NEW COMEX RECORD SET LAST IN AUG.2018 AT 244,196 WITH A SILVER PRICE OF $14.78/(AUGUST 22/2018)..THE PREVIOUS RECORD WAS SET ON APRIL 9/2018 AT 243,411 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS WITH THE SILVER PRICE AT THAT DAY: $16.53). AND PREVIOUS TO THAT, THE RECORD  WAS ESTABLISHED AT: 234,787 CONTRACTS, SET ON APRIL 21.2017 OVER  1 1/3 YEARS AGO.  THE PRICE OF SILVER ON THAT DAY: $17.89.  AS YOU CAN SEE, WE HAVE RECORD HIGH OPEN INTERESTS IN SILVER  ACCOMPANIED BY A CONTINUAL LOWER PRICE WHEN THAT RECORD WAS SET…..

 

.

OUR CUSTOMARY MIGRATION OF COMEX LONGS CONTINUE TO MORPH INTO LONDON FORWARDS  AS OUR BANKERS USED THEIR EMERGENCY PROCEDURE TO ISSUE:

 

0 CONTRACTS FOR MARCH. 0 CONTRACTS FOR APRIL., 1141 FOR MAY AND  AND ALL OTHER MONTHS: ZERO. TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE: 1141 CONTRACTS. EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON.  IF WE TAKE THE  OI GAIN AT THE COMEX OF 1305 CONTRACTS TO THE 1141 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S,  WE  OBTAIN  A STRONG GAIN  OF 2426  OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS.  THUS IN OUNCES, THE GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES: 12.23 MILLION OZ!!! AND YET WE ALSO HAVE A STRONG DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL AS WE WITNESSED A FINAL STANDING OF GREATER THAN 30 MILLION OZ FOR JULY, A STRONG 6.065 MILLION OZ FOR AUGUST..  A HUGE 39.505  MILLION OZ  STANDING FOR SILVER IN SEPTEMBER… OVER 2 million  OZ STANDING FOR THE NON ACTIVE MONTH OF OCTOBER.,  7.440 MILLION OZ FINALLY STANDING IN NOVEMBER.  21.925 MILLION OZ STANDING IN DECEMBER , 5.845 MILLION OZ STANDING IN JANUARY. 2.955 MILLION OZ STANDING IN FEBRUARY AND NOW 25.325 MILLION OZ FOR MARCH.

 

 

RESULT: A GOOD SIZED INCREASE IN SILVER OI AT THE COMEX WITH THE 2 CENT LOSS IN PRICING THAT SILVER UNDERTOOK IN PRICING// YESTERDAY.BUT WE ALSO HAD A STRONG SIZED 1141 EFP’S ISSUED TRANSFERRING COMEX LONGS OVER TO LONDON. TOGETHER WITH THE STRONG  SIZED AMOUNT OF SILVER OUNCES STANDING FOR SEPTEMBER, DEMAND FOR PHYSICAL SILVER CONTINUES TO INTENSIFY AS WE WITNESS SEVERE BACKWARDATION IN SILVER IN LONDON.

BOTH THE SILVER COMEX AND THE GOLD COMEX ARE IN STRESS AS THE BANKERS SCOUR THE BOWELS OF THE EXCHANGE FOR METAL

 

 

(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)THURSDAY MORNING/ WEDNESDAY NIGHT: 

SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 4.32 POINTS OR 0.14% //Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 258.15 POINTS OR 0.89%  /The Nikkei closed DOWN  140.80 POINTS OR 0.65%/ Australia’s all ordinaries CLOSED UP .28%

/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed UP  at 6.7072 AS TRUCE DECLARED FOR 3 MONTHS /Oil UP to 56.84 dollars per barrel for WTI and 65.78 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED RED 

ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP // LAST AT 6.7072 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.7170: / TRADE TALKS NOW ON/MAJOR PROBLEMS AT HUAWEI /CFO ARRESTED  : /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /CHINA RETALIATES WITH TARIFFS/ TRUMP RESPONDS TO NEW TARIFFS AND IT NOW A FULL TRADE WAR COMMENCED

 

 

 

3A/NORTH KOREA/SOUTH KOREA

 

 

 

i)North Korea/

This does not look good at all: an artificial 2.1 earthquake detected in North Korea and it was due to artificial seismic activity as a result of an explosion inside a mine

( zerohedge)

 

 

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

 

 

 

3 C/  CHINA

 

 

 

 

i)China/the globe

A good indicator of the deterioration in the global economy: semiconductor orders from China plunges the greatest since 2008

( zerohedge)

ii)China  responds after using the USA for playing judge, jury and executioner
( zerohedge)
iii)China is now growing quite uneasy about the trade talks according to the NewYork Times
(courtesy zerohedge)

4/EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

i)ECB

Draghi surprisingly very dovish as he guides rates.  The big news is that he is re introducing his key QE vehicle the LTRO or TLTRO.  This will no doubt save Italy for the time being..this is great for gold.

( zerohedge)-

ii)Mario explains that he never saw this coming..sure!!!
( zerohedge)
iii)Draghi admits a substantial downward revision to EU growth and inflation outlook.  Europe is in trouble

( zerohedge)

 

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

 

 

 

6. GLOBAL ISSUES

Canada:

Vancouver home sales crashed by 33% last month as fewer and fewer can afford a home in this very pricing city

( zerohedge)

 

7. OIL ISSUES

this should cripple PDVSA and venezuela

( Irina Slav//OilPrice.com//)

 

 

 

 

8 EMERGING MARKET ISSUES

 

 

i)VENEZUELA/

Venezuela expels the German ambassador over his support for Guaido

(courtesy zerohedge)

ii)Argentina
The Argentine Peso plummets to a record low of 42.5 pesos per dollar.  In 2001 it was 1:1 and in 2003:  3:1
as inflation rips through this nation
(courtesy zerohedge)

 

 

9. PHYSICAL MARKETS

i)The author correctly states that we have a USA carry trade:  the higher yielding USA dollar is causing funds to flow into the USA
(McCormick/Bloomberg/GATA)

ii)far left article admonishes German gold bugs and the repatriation of gold to Mother Germany( GATA/)

iii)Van Eck International, the largest shareholder of Barrick is urging a joint venture and not a merger.

( Reuters/GATA)

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

 

 

MARKET TRADING

 

 

 

ii)Market data

 

iii)USA ECONOMIC/GENERAL STORIES

a)My goodness: thousands of Medical professionals are losing their licenses because of failure to pay off their student debt

( zerohedge)

b)trump gives car makers an ultimatum on emissions

( zerohedge)

c)this may turn out to be extremely problematic for our foreign banks operating here: new Fed plans to tighten liquidity rules and this would limit their reliance at the discount window once a crisis begins

( zerohedge)

d)This North Dakota company has offered to build the 234 miles of Trump border wall for 1.4 billion dollars and not 8$ billion
( zerohedge)

e)This is a must read as Brandon Smith explains to us what is going on with respect to USA politics etc.  If believes that Trump will not win in 2020 and the far left will gain in their new policies.  If implemented a green new deal will create civil war in the uSA( Brandon Smith)

f)Quite a story: Florida Man steals a rare coin collection and uses values exceeding 33,000 dollars in a supermarket vending machine

( zerohedge)

g)Well that did not last long: Amazon subsidiary slashes worker hours just 4 months after proceeding to the 15 dollar minimum wage level

( zerohedge)

h)this is interesting:  the Fed released in its latest flow of funds report that households net worth has dropped by a huge 3.7 trillion dollars, its first drop in 4 years

( zerohedge)

iv)SWAMP STORIES

House democrats erupt into turmoil as they cannot even get a resolution on an  antisemitism rebuke from the far left

(courtesy zerohedge)

 

E)SWAMP STORIES/MAJOR STORIES//THE KING REPORT

 

end

 

 

 

Let us head over to the comex:

 

THE TOTAL COMEX GOLD OPEN ROSE BY A CONSIDERABLE SIZED 6825 CONTRACTS UP TO A LEVEL OF 478,136 WITH THE GAIN IN THE PRICE OF GOLD ($3.30) IN YESTERDAY’S RAID// COMEX TRADING).

WE ARE NOW IN THE  NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF MARCH..  THE CME REPORTS THAT THE BANKERS ISSUED A CONSIDERABLE SIZED COMEX TRANSFER THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE AS THESE LONGS RECEIVED A DELIVERABLE LONDON FORWARD TOGETHER WITH A FIAT BONUS., THAT IS 4012 EFP CONTRACTS WERE ISSUED:

FOR MARCH:  0. FOR APRIL 4012, FOR JUNE: 0 CONTRACTS AND FINALLY DECEMBER: 0 AND  ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS:

TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE:  4012 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: 10,837 TOTAL CONTRACTS IN THAT 4012 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE GAINED A STRONG SIZED 6825 COMEX CONTRACTS.

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES ONLY::10,837 contracts OR 1,083,700 OZ OR 33.70 TONNES.

 

We are now in the NON active contract month of MARCH and here the open interest stands at 56 contracts  for a loss of 31 contracts.We had 39 notices served upon yesterday so we AGAIN GAINED  8 contracts or AN ADDITIONAL 800 oz will stand at the comex as these guys refused to morph into London based forwards as well as negating a fiat bonus for their effort.

 

 

 

The next non active delivery month after  March is the  active delivery month is April and here the OI fell by 1257 contracts down to 295,365 contracts. The non active month of May picked up 5 contracts for a total of 1450 open interest.  After May, the next active delivery month is June and here the OI stands at 110,434 having gained 6853 contracts.

 

 

 

 

TODAY’S NOTICES FILED:

WE HAD 8 NOTICES FILED TODAY AT THE COMEX FOR 800 OZ. (0.0590 tonnes)

 

 

 

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And now for the wild silver comex results.

Total COMEX silver OI ROSE BY A GOOD SIZED 1305 CONTRACTS FROM 190,024 UP TO 191,329(AND CLOSER TO THE NEW RECORD OI FOR SILVER SET ON AUGUST 22.2018.  (THE PREVIOUS RECORD WAS SET APRIL 9.2018/ 243,411 CONTRACTS) AND TODAY’S CONSIDERABLE OI COMEX LOSS  OCCURRED WITH A 2 CENT LOSS IN PRICING.//YESTERDAY 

 

 

WE ARE NOW INTO THE ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF MARCH AND THE  OPEN INTEREST IN THIS FRONT MONTH RESTS AT 554 HAVING LOST 352 CONTRACTS.

WE HAD 372 NOTICES FILED YESTERDAY SO WE GAINED 20 CONTRACTS OR 100,000 ADDITIONAL OZ WILL STAND AT THE SILVER COMEX AS THESE GUYS REFUSED TO MORPH INTO LONDON BASED FORWARDS AS WELL AS NEGATING A FIAT BONUS. WE HAVE BEEN WITNESSING QUEUE JUMPING IN SILVER FOR OVER 3 YEARS IN THAT THE TOTAL OZ STANDING INCREASES FROM FIRST DAY NOTICE STANDING.

TODAY THE  SILVER COMEX IS IN STRESS.!! WE HAVE HAD FOR THE 5TH CONSECUTIVE DAY A HUGE QUEUE JUMPING AND THUS A HUGE INCREASE IN THE AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX.

 

 

 

 

AFTER MARCH, WE HAVE THE NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF APRIL.  HERE: APRIL RISES TO 815 CONTRACTS FOR A GAIN OF 17 CONTRACTS.  AFTER APRIL, THE NEXT BIG ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH IS MAY AND HERE THE OI ROSE BY 842 CONTRACTS UP TO 139,939 CONTRACTS.

 

 

 

ON A NET BASIS WE GAINED A STRONG 2446 SILVER OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS AS WE OBTAINED A 1305 CONTRACT GAIN AT THE COMEX COMBINING WITH THE ADDITION OF 1141 OI CONTRACTS NAVIGATING OVER TO LONDON.

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES:  2446 CONTRACTS...AND ALL OF THIS LOSS OF DEMAND OCCURRED WITH A 2 CENT LOSS IN PRICING// YESTERDAY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TODAY’S NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED:

 

We, today, had 22 notice(s) filed for 110,000 OZ for the MARCH, 2019 COMEX contract for silver

 

 

Trading Volumes on the COMEX TODAY:  308,295  CONTRACTS

 

 

CONFIRMED COMEX VOL. FOR YESTERDAY:  213,556  contracts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Initial standings for  MAR/GOLD

MAR 7 /2019.

Gold Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oz nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz
119,159.834
oz
Brinks
HSBC
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory in oz nil

oz

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deposits to the Customer Inventory, in oz  

 

 

 

 

55,955.375

 

oz

JPMorgan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No of oz served (contracts) today
8 notice(s)
 800 OZ
(0.0240 TONNES)
No of oz to be served (notices)
48 contracts
(4800 oz)
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
310 notices
31,000 OZ
.9642 TONNES
Total accumulative withdrawals of gold from the Dealers inventory this month NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of gold from the Customer inventory this month xxx oz

 

we had 0 dealer entries:

 

 

total dealer deposits: nil oz

total dealer withdrawals: 0 oz

We had 0 kilobar entries

 

we had 1 deposit into the customer account

i) Into JPMorgan:  55,955.375 oz

total gold deposits: nil oz

we had 2 gold withdrawals from the customer account:

i) out of Brinks: 55,955.375 oz..and this landed into JPMorgan

ii) out of HSBC: 63,202.737 oz

 

 

 

total gold withdrawing from the customer; 119,159.834   oz

thus a net: 63,202.737 oz leaves the comex.

we had 0  adjustments…

FOR THE MAR 2019 CONTRACT MONTH)

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 8 contract(s) of which 0 notices were stopped (received) by j.P. Morgan dealer and 4 notice(s) was (were) stopped/ Received) by j.P.Morgan customer account and 0 notices by the squid  (Goldman Sachs)

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To calculate the INITIAL total number of gold ounces standing for the MARCH/2019. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (310) x 100 oz , to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of MAR. (56 contract) minus the number of notices served upon today (8 x 100 oz per contract) equals 35,800 OZ OR 1.113 TONNES) the number of ounces standing in this active month of MARCH

Thus the INITIAL standings for gold for the MAR/2019 contract month:

No of notices served (310 x 100 oz)  + {56)OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (8 x 100 oz )which equals 35,00000 oz standing OR 1.113 TONNES in this active delivery month of MARCH.

We GAINED 8 contracts or an additional 800 oz WILL  STAND AT THE COMEX AS THEY REFUSED TO MORPH INTO LONDON BASED FORWARDS AS WELL AS NEGATING TO ACCEPT A FIAT BONUS.

 

HOWEVER, THE GOLD COMEX (AND SILVER COMEX) ARE NOW IN STRESS AS THE CROOKS ARE DESPERATE TO FIND PHYSICAL METAL.

SURPRISINGLY NO GOLD HAS BEEN ENTERING THE COMEX VAULTS AND WE HAVE WITNESSED THIS FOR THE PAST YEAR!!  WE HAVE ONLY 11.388 TONNES OF REGISTERED (  GOLD OFFERED FOR SALE)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

total registered or dealer gold:  366,127.915 oz or  11.388 tonnes
total registered and eligible (customer) gold;   8,036,244.026 oz 249.96 tonnes

FOR COMPARISON

MARCH 2018 VS MARCH 2019 CONTRACTS

 

 

 

 

ON FEB 27.2018 WE HAD 995 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS STANDING (2 DAYS BEFORE FIRST DAY NOTICE)  VS FEB 26.2019:  539 CONTRACTS.(2 DAYS BEFORE FDN)

ON FIRST DAY NOTICE MARCH 1/2018: TOTAL GOLD TONNAGE STANDING FOR DELIVERY: 2.1524 TONNES

THE FINAL AMOUNT OF GOLD TONNAGE: MARCH 31/2018:  1.6114 TONNES AS THE REST MORPHED INTO LONDON BASED FORWARDS.

IN THE LAST 29 MONTHS 105 NET TONNES HAS LEFT THE COMEX.

 

THE GOLD COMEX IS NOW IN STRESS AS
1. GOLD IS LEAVING THE COMEX
2. GOLD IS LEAVING THE REGISTERED CATEGORY OF THE COMEX.

end

And now for silver

AND NOW THE  DELIVERY MONTH

MAR INITIAL standings/SILVER

MAR 7 2019
Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory NIL oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
46,839.300  oz
Brinks
Delaware

 

 

Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
nil oz
Deposits to the Customer Inventory
45,839.300
oz
JPMorgan
No of oz served today (contracts)
22
CONTRACT(S)
110,000 OZ)
No of oz to be served (notices)
532 contracts
2,660,000 oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts) 4722 contracts

(23,610,000 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

total dealer withdrawals: 0 oz

we had  1 deposits into the customer account

 

i) Into JPMorgan: 45,839.300  oz

 

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

JPMorgan now has 147 million oz of  total silver inventory or 49.32% of all official comex silver. (147 million/298 million)

 

i) Into everybody else: 0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

total customer deposits today: 45,839.300   oz

 

we had 2 withdrawals out of the customer account:

i) Out of Brinks:  45,839.300 oz..landed in JPMorgan’s vaults.

ii) Out of Delaware:  1,000.000 oz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

total withdrawals: 46,839.300    oz

 

we had 2 adjustment

i) Out of CNT

19,7433.500 oz was adjusted out of the customer account and this landed into the dealer account of CNT

ii) Out of Delaware:  1015.785 oz was removed from the customer account as an accounting error.

 

 

total dealer silver:  94.078 million

total dealer + customer silver:  299.568 million oz

 

 

 

 

The total number of notices filed today for the MARCH 2019. contract month is represented by 22 contract(s) FOR  110,000  oz

To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in MAR, we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at 4722 x 5,000 oz = 23,610,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of MAR. (554) and the number of notices served upon today (22 x 5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

.

Thus the INITIAL standings for silver for the MAR/2019 contract month: 4722(notices served so far)x 5000 oz + OI for front month of MAR( 554) -number of notices served upon today (22)x 5000 oz equals 26,270,000 oz of silver standing for the MAR contract month.  This is a strong number of oz standing for an off delivery month.

We gained a considerable 20 contracts or an additional 100,000 oz will stand as bankers queue jumped in order to receive badly needed physical metal. The silver comex is in deep stress as this is the 5TH day in a row of a huge gain in silver oz standing.

 

 

 

 

 

ON MARCH 1.2018 WE HAD 24.670 MILLION OZ OF SILVER STAND FOR DELIVERY. BY THE CONCLUSION OF THE DELIVERY MONTH, 27.190 MILLION OZ STOOD AS QUEUE JUMPING IN THE SILVER COMEX ARENA HAD BEEN THE NORM FOR QUITE A WHILE.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

TODAY’S SILVER VOLUME:  62,171 CONTRACTS

 

 

CONFIRMED VOLUME FOR YESTERDAY: 60,787 CONTRACTS… 

 

 

 

 

YESTERDAY’S CONFIRMED VOLUME OF 60,787 CONTRACTS EQUATES to 303 million OZ  43.1% 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 FALLS TO -2.93% (MAR 7/2019)
2. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV RISES TO -0.88% to NAV (MAR 7/2019 )
Note: Sprott silver trust back into NEGATIVE territory at -2.93%-/Sprott physical gold trust is back into NEGATIVE/

(courtesy Sprott/GATA)

3.SPROTT CEF.A FUND (FORMERLY CENTRAL FUND OF CANADA):

NAV 12.92/TRADING 12.55/DISCOUNT 2.85

END

And now the Gold inventory at the GLD/

MARCH 7/WITH GOLD DOWN $1.40 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 766.59 TONNES

MARCH 6/WITH GOLD UP $3.30 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 766.59 TONNES

MARCH 5/WITH GOLD DOWN ONLY $1.70: A HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 5.87 TONNES FROM THE GLD INVENTORY AND THIS GOLD HAS BEEN USED IN THE WHACKING PROCESS YESTERDAY AND TODAY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 766.59 TONNES

MARCH 4/WITH GOLD ANOTHER $12.50 TODAY: A HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 11.76 TONNES FROM THE GLD INVENTORY//INVENTORY RESTS AT 772.46 TONNES

MAR 1/WITH GOLD DOWN $16.90 TODAY; A HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 4.11 TONNES FROM THE GLD INVENTORY//INVENTORY RESTS AT 784.22 TONNES

FEB 28/WITH GOLD DOWN $4.80: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 788.33

FEB 27/WITH GOLD DOWN $6.80: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY//INVENTORY RESTS AT 788.33 TONNES

FEB 26  WITH GOLD DOWN $1.10: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.18 TONNES FROM THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 788.33

FEB 25/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.10: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 789.51 TONNES

 

FEB 22/WITH GOLD UP $5.15 A HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 4.99 TONNES OF GOLD FROM THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 789.51 TONNES

FEB 21/WITH GOLD DOWN $19.50/ A SURPRISE GAIN (DEPOSIT) OF 2.05 TONNES INTO THE GLD INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 794.50 TONNES

FEB 20/WITH GOLD UP $3.10 TODAY: SURPRISINGLY NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY/GLD INVENTORY RESTS AT 792.45 TONNES

FEB 19/WITH GOLD UP $22.95/ TWO TRANSACTIONS: A HUGE 3.82 TONNES OF GOLD WITHDRAWAL FROM THE GLD THIS MORNING AND THEN  0.58 TONNES THIS AFTERNOON///INVENTORY RESTS AT 792,45 TONNES. FROM FEB 1/2019 UNTIL TODAY, GOLD IS UP $24.25 AND YET GOLD WITHDRAWALS ARE A HUGE 31.42 TONNES/THIS IS CRIMINAL!!

FEB 15/WITH GOLD UP $8.00 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 796.85 TONNES

FEB 14//WITH GOLD DOWN $1.10: WE HAD ANOTHER PAPER RAID (WITHDRAWAL) OF 2.04 TONNES/INVENTORY RESTS AT 796.85 TONNES/

FEB 13:/WITH GOLD UP $1.40 TODAY: ANOTHER PAPER RAID BY OUR CROOKED BANKERS AS THEY WITHDREW ANOTHER 2.23 TONNES OF GOLD FROM THE GLD. INVENTORY RESTS AT 798.89 TONNES

FEB 12: WITH GOLD UP $2.20 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 802.12 TONNES

FEB 11/WITH GOLD DOWN $6.25 TODAY: ANOTHER PAPER WITHDRAWAL OF 1.17 TONNES OF GOLD AND THIS GOLD WAS USED TO WHACK OUR PRECIOUS METAL TODAY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 802.12 TONNES

FEB 8/WITH GOLD UP $4.00/THE CROOKS WITHDREW ANOTHER HUGE 6.59 TONNES OF PAPER GOLD AND THIS GOLD WAS USED TO CONTAIN THE PRICE OF GOLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 803.29 TONNES

FEB 7/WITH GOLD UP 35 CENTS/ANOTHER PAPER GOLD WITHDRAWAL OF 2.06 TONNES OF GOLD FROM THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 809.76 TONNES

FEB 6/WITH GOLD DOWN $4.85 TODAY: A STRONG PAPER WITHDRAWAL OF 1.37 TONNES FROM THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 811.82 TONNES

FEB 5/WITH GOLD UP $.30 TODAY: A HUGE PAPER WITHDRAWAL OF 4.11 TONNES/INVENTORY RESTS AT 813.29 TONNES

FEB 4/WITH GOLD DOWN $2.65: TWO TRANSACTIONS: i)A MASSIVE WITHDRAWAL OF 8.37 TONNES OF PAPER GOLD WAS REMOVED FROM THE GLD AND THEN ii) a A STRONG DEPOSIT OF 2.00 TONNES/INVENTORY RESTS AT 817.40 TONNES

FEB 1/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.00 TODAY: NO CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 823.87 TONNES

 

 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

MAR 7/2019/ Inventory rests tonight at 766.59 tonnes

*IN LAST 555 TRADING DAYS: 168.46 NET TONNES HAVE BEEN REMOVED FROM THE GLD
*LAST 455 TRADING DAYS: A NET 1.64 TONNES HAVE NOW BEEN REMOVED INTO THE GLD INVENTORY.

 

end

 

Now the SLV Inventory/

MARCH 7/WITH SILVER DOWN 4 CENTS: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.503 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 6/WITH SILVER DOWN 2 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.503 MILLION OZ

MARCH 5/WITH SILVER UP ONE CENT: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.503 MILLION OZ///

MARCH 4/WITH SILVER DOWN 14 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV; A WITHDRAWAL OF 871,000 OZ OF SILVER FROM THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.503 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 1/ WITH SILVER DOWN 38 CENTS/NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY

FEB 28/WITH SILVER DOWN 12 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.374

FEB 27/WITH SILVER DOWN 14 CENTS//A  SMALL CHANGE IN INVENTORY: A WITHDRAWAL OF 610,000 OZ//SLV INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.374 MILLION OZ/

FEB 26/WITH SILVER DOWN ONE CENT; NO CHANGE IN INVENTORY/RESTS AT 309.984

FEB 25./WITH SILVER DOWN 7 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.984 MILLION OZ/

FEB 22/WITH SILVER UP 7 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.984 MILLION OZ///

FEB 21/WITH SILVER DOWN 37 CENTS: SURPRISINGLY A DEPOSIT OF 1.688 MILLION OZ OF SILVER INVENTORY/ INTO THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.984 MILLION OZ///

FEB 20/WITH SILVER UP 19 CENTS AND ON A TEAR: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.296 MILLION OZ/

FEB 19/WITH SILVER UIP 25 CENTS TODAY: A BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 938,000 OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.296 MILLION OZ/

FEB 15/WITH SILVER UP 19 CENTS: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 307.358 MILLION OZ/

FEB 14/WITH SILVER DOWN 11 CENTS: A DEPOSIT OF 423,000 OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 307.358 MILLION OZ

FEB 13/WITH SILVER DOWN 4 CENTS TODAY: ANOTHER BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 938,000 OZ FROM THE SLV./INVENTORY RESTS AT 306.935 MILLION OZ/

FEB 12 WITH SILVER UP 3 CENTS TODAY:  NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT TH SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 307.873 MILLION OZ/

FEB 11/WITH SILVER DOWN 13 CENTS TODAY:A BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY; A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.126 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV INVENTORY/INVENTORY RESTS AT 307.873 MILLION OZ/

FEB 8/WITH SILVER UP 11 CENTS: ANOTHER WITHDRAWAL OF 657,000 OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 308.999  MILLION OZ/

FEB 7/WITH SILVER DOWN 1 CENT TODAY: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.656 MILLION OZ/

FEB 6/WITH SILVER DOWN 13 CENTS TODAY; A BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 938,000  OZ/INVENTORY RESTS AT 309.656 MILLION OZ/

FEB 5/WITH SILVER DOWN 3 CENTS; NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 310.594 MILLION OZ.

FEB 4/WITH SILVER DOWN 4 CENTS: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 129,000 OZ TO PAY FOR FEES/.INVENTORY RESTS AT 310.594 MILLION OZ/

FEB 1/WITH SILVER DOWN 14 CENTS: NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY  RESTS AT 310.723 MILLION OZ/

 

MAR 7/2019:

 

Inventory 308.503 MILLION OZ

LIBOR SCHEDULE AND GOFO RATES:

 

 

THE RISE IN LIBOR IS CREATING A SCARCITY OF DOLLARS BECAUSE FOREIGN EXCHANGE SWAPS (COSTS) ARE SIMPLY PROHIBITIVE

YOUR DATA…..

6 Month MM GOFO 2.21/ and libor 6 month duration 2.69

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

G0LD LENDING RATE: + .48

 

 

XXXXXXXX

12 Month MM GOFO
+ 2.51%

LIBOR FOR 12 MONTH DURATION: 2.88

GOFO = LIBOR – GOLD LENDING RATE

GOLD LENDING RATE  = +.37

end

 

PHYSICAL GOLD/SILVER STORIES

end
i) GOLDCORE BLOG/Mark O’Byrne
China raises official reserves by 320,000 oz or  9.95 tonnes

China Gold Reserves Rise To 60.26 Million Ounces Worth Just $79.5 Billion

China increased its gold reserves for a third straight month in February, data from the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) showed this morning.

The value of China’s gold reserves rose slightly to $79.498 billion in February from $79.319 billion at the end of January, as the central bank increased the total amount of gold reserves to 60.260 million fine troy ounces from 59.940 million troy ounces. (Harvey; 9.95 tonnes)

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) did not explain why it bought more gold. It is almost certainly in large part due to concerns about the Chinese, U.S. and global economic outlook and the outlook for the dollar in the coming months and years.

China’s foreign exchange (fx) reserves rose to their highest in six months in February. There are growing concerns over U.S.-China trade talks and the potential for trade wars and the impact of this on their respective economies.

Chinese foreign exchange (fx) reserves, the world’s largest, rose by $2.26 billion in February to $3.090 trillion, central bank data showed on Thursday, marking the highest level since August 2018. The U.S. trade deficit hit its highest in a decade in 2018, in a resounding failure for President Donald Trump’s global trade offensive, U.S. government data showed yesterday.

It is important to realise that the PBoC still have a very meager 2.4% of its foreign exchange reserves in gold, so their gold diversification is likely in it’s infancy. John Reade of the World Gold Council notes on Twitter that the last time the PBoC reported regular monthly increases in gold holdings, it continued for 24 months.

We have long pointed out two other entities, besides the PBOC, have also been buying gold – the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) and the China Investment Corporation (CIC).

These potentially sizeable sources of demand are not included in the PBOC figures.

It is important to note this lack of transparency regarding total aggregate Chinese central bank and sovereign fund demand. Therefore, it is likely that we are underestimating Chinese and thus global gold demand.

China may be adopting the Russian strategy of being very public in announcing their increasing gold reserves as they attempt to position the yuan as an alternative reserve currency to the world’s current reserve currency the dollar.

 

 

News and Commentary

Gold steady on firmer dollar ahead of ECB policy meeting (Reuters.com)

ECB Readies Response Amid Euro-Area Slowdown (Bloomberg.com)

Asia shares sluggish as global growth concerns return; ECB meeting eyed (Reuters.com)

U.S. senators say Saudi crown prince has gone ‘full gangster’ (Reuters.com)

Sweden’s central bank trims forex reserve after Nordea moves to Finland (Reuters.com)

U.S. Trade Gap Surged to $621 Billion in 2018, 10-Year High (Bloomberg.com)

Trump’s Big Tax Cuts Did Little to Boost Economic Growth (Bloomberg.com)

Global Economy Is Sinking Fast, And It Will Take The US With It (ZeroHedge.com)

Chinese Hackers Stole Maritime Military Secrets From Group Of Universities (ZeroHedge.com)

Gold advocates support free and fair trade with stable, international gold-backed money (Gata.org)

U.S. Trade Gap Surged to $621 Billion in 2018, 10-Year High (Bloomberg.com)

Gold Prices (LBMA PM)

06 Mar: USD 1,285.55, GBP 978.82 & EUR 1,136.82 per ounce
05 Mar: USD 1,285.00, GBP 975.19 & EUR 1,134.78 per ounce
04 Mar: USD 1,287.45, GBP 972.93 & EUR 1,135.14 per ounce
01 Mar: USD 1,309.95, GBP 989.27 & EUR 1,152.23 per ounce
28 Feb: USD 1,325.45, GBP 996.21 & EUR 1,162.82 per ounce
27 Feb: USD 1,326.45, GBP 998.02 & EUR 1,164.09 per ounce

Silver Prices (LBMA)

06 Mar: USD 15.09, GBP 11.49 & EUR 13.36 per ounce
05 Mar: USD 15.11, GBP 11.47 & EUR 13.33 per ounce
04 Mar: USD 15.16, GBP 11.50 & EUR 13.38 per ounce
01 Mar: USD 15.56, GBP 11.75 & EUR 13.67 per ounce
28 Feb: USD 15.81, GBP 11.89 & EUR 13.85 per ounce
27 Feb: USD 15.86, GBP 11.91 & EUR 13.92 per ounce

Recent Market Updates

–  JPMorgan Is Bullish on Gold as a Hedge Against Rising Inflation
– Gold – It Might Be Different This Time
– Euromillions Winners To Invest In Gold In 2019?
– Gold Still on a Long Term Track to Reach $2,000 An Ounce
– “Gold Is A Global Thermometer Of Risk” – CEO Q+A: Stephen Flood, GoldCore
– U.S. Mint Suspends Silver Bullion Coin Sales After Sales Double In February
– MMT: Modern Monetary Madness Will Lead To Higher Taxes and Inflation
– Gold Broker Has Good Sense and Prefers Gold To All That Glitters (The Times)

Mark O’Byrne
Executive Director

 

 

GATA STORIES AS IT RELATES TO PHYSICAL GOLD/SILVER
The author correctly states that we have a USA carry trade:  the higher yielding USA dollar is causing funds to flow into the USA
(McCormick/Bloomberg/GATA)

Higher U.S. rates creating carry trade supporting dollar

 Section: 

Watching Global Flows Explains Why the Dollar Won’t Be Kept Down

By Liz McCormick
Bloomberg News
Wednesday, March 6, 2019

The dollar’s resilience after what some have categorized as the most dovish Federal Reserve turnaround in history comes as little surprise to Exante Data’s Jens Nordvig.

U.S. President Donald Trump may be looking to jawbone the greenback. But for Exante, it’s still all about the grab for yield, with rates on dollar-denominated assets remaining more attractive relative to the painfully low or negative ones found in Europe and Asia. The firm’s analysis of the holdings of global asset managers suggests that isn’t going to change any time soon.

… 

Exante’s flagship global flow analytics product aggregates fund managers positioning in fixed income and currencies to pinpoint extremes. It’s readings — which have helped snag Exante clients willing to pay $60,000 a year for its insights — include gauges of activity tied to carry trades.

Inflows into this strategy, a bet in which an investor borrows in a lower-yielding currency and invests in one with higher rates, using purchases of dollar-denominated assets surged this quarter to multiyear highs. That’s come even as Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and his colleagues have indicated a resolve to stand pat on policy normalization for now. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-03-06/watching-the-global-f…

END

far left article admonishes German gold bugs and the repatriation of gold to Mother Germany

(courtesy GATA/)

Leftist New Statesman attacks gold advocates and Germany’s gold repatriation leader

 Section: 

11:30a ET Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

The venerable British left-wing magazine The New Statesman today published an article disparaging “gold bugs” as “far right” and nationalist and particularly disparaging GATA’s friend Peter Boehringer, the founder of the movement in Germany to repatriate the country’s gold reserves who is now a member of the country’s parliament, chairman of its budget committee, and a leader of the Alternative for Germany party.

Predictably enough the New Statesman’s article failed to acknowledge surreptitious suppression of the gold price and indeed the rigging of nearly all markets by central banks, since, after all, leftists generally oppose free markets.

Your secretary/treasurer forwarded the article to Boehringer, whose quick reply made the article worth calling to your attention. That reply is appended, on top of the article itself.

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

* * *

Interesting read. Thank you.

That professor did quite some research on me, Alternative for Germany, and gold in general. Some parts of the article are correct — especially the thesis that gold is globally functioning, real money, as we have been writing for 20 years now. It is therefore absurd that the author accuses us goldbugs of being nationalist, anti-liberal, closed-border lunatics.

We are exactly the opposite. We support free and fair trade with stable, international money, potentially partly gold-backed as was the case for centuries.

I guess the author knows that his article is purely leftist propaganda. The money socialists cry “wolf” to distract from their own socialist and supranationalist plans against humanity. They fear the power of uncontrollable and unbribable gold.

I will continue to uphold the flags of sound money, monetary truth, and gold in the Deutsche Bundestag. We will see what will prevail in the end: monetary truth, soundness, and gold or lies, inflation, and paper deception. History gives us many hints as to the answer.

Peter Boehringer, Chairman
Budget Committee
Deutsche Bundestag
Berlin, Germany

* * *

Why Is the Far Right Obsessed with Gold?

By Quinn Slobodian
The New Statesman, London
Wednesday, March 6, 2019

https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/economy/2019/03/why-far-right-obse…

In 2010 a precious metals blogger called Peter Boehringer posted an image of Karl Marx’s head floating over Frankfurt, the home of the European Central Bank. Like many online “gold bugs,” his message reflected the belief that currencies without the backing of gold amount to “monetary socialism” and pave the way to government overreach and eventual economic collapse. Boehringer now sits in the German Bundestag for the Alternative for Germany Party (AfD), and chairs the parliament’s budget committee.

A few years later, the far-right leader Marine Le Pen launched a campaign to return French gold deposits kept in New York. The gold bars “do not belong to the state, nor the Bank of France, but to the French people,” she announced. Last month, Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini called gold the “property of the Italian people” and threatened to plug a gap in the budget by selling off Italy’s gold deposits. Gold has also caught the attention of far-right politicians further eastwards. In 2018 Poland began stockpiling gold; Hungary, under the leadership of Viktor Orban, has multiplied its gold reserves tenfold.

Why is the far right fixated on gold? Politicians like Le Pen and Orban are typically cast as advocates of a “closed society” pitted against globalisation and free movement. Gold doesn’t fit this mold; historically, it has been a symbol of connection, not isolation. The gold standard was the bedrock of the first age of globalisation that enabled exchange across continents and lasted from the 1870s to the outbreak of the First World War. To classical liberals, gold was the metal that bound the world economy together.

But the far right has long understood the power of symbols. Gold is the natural vessel of value that harks back to an era where finance and commerce were unburdened by supranational institutions like the European Central Bank and the U.S. Fed. It evokes morality grounded in traditional ideas of economic value — to stand for gold is to stand against states printing “fiat money” that isn’t backed by precious metal. Think of it as the opposite of left-leaning economists’ recent interest in Modern Monetary Theory, which sees currency as a creation of the state. To understand the right’s political vision, follow the money.

Gold has had a wild ride in the new millennium. Its value more than sextupled from 2000 to a high point in 2011, driven mainly by the Global Financial Crisis of 2007-8 and the subsequent Eurozone crisis. German savers, in particular, fled to gold as a safe haven in times of uncertainty and zero interest rates.

The far right saw the rising price of gold as an index of anti-establishment anxiety. In the United States, Tea Party cheerleaders Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh pitched gold on their respective shows, with Beck’s favored company eventually charged with fraud. Gold played an especially visible role in the rise of the far-right AfD, currently the official opposition in Germany’s parliament.

The AfD was formed by a clutch of economists in 2013 to tackle the German government’s perceived mismanagement of the European financial crisis. Germany’s electoral system matches individual political donations with state funds. After garnering little support in 2014 elections, the AfD opened an online gold shop selling the defunct Deutsche Mark alongside four denominations of the South African Krugerrand. It was a canny move: by counting the purchases as donations, the AfD could increase their share of state funding.

In 2014, an AfD spokesperson proudly told a reporter “we are the only party whose headquarters is also a profit centre.” The AfD’s gold shop was a significant boon for a party with a small donor base — it made 2 million euros across 2014 and 2015, before the law was changed.

But the AfD wasn’t just growing its funding base: It was prophesying the downfall of the Euro. By selling gold, the party promoted suspicion of the German state’s ability to manage its own currency, and sold an exit from the state-managed monetary system. At the same time, the AfD profited from the state’s electoral funding law, designed to encourage party competition within Germany’s democracy.

For AfD thinkers, gold was more than just a reliable store of value. It was a filament of cultural and social order. Long-time member of the AfD federal board Dirk Driesang wrote in 2014 that “the fatal effects of fundamentally fake money (“falschgeld”) on our society and politics, our family and our values, are destructive and undermine the fundamentals of our civilisation as well as our western culture.”

To hazard a coinage, we could call the AfD’s approach to gold a type of “auripatriotism” — a national feeling whose reference point is not a territory, ethnicity or language, but whichever monetary system backs its currency with the precious metal that is perceived the natural currency of modern humanity. Although the AfD rejects the slogan of “open borders,” they imagine open borders for gold. Far from eschewing globalisation, the AfD’s vision subjects the actions of the state to the continual audit of those who have the gold.

It was Peter Boehringer himself that launched the “bring our gold home” campaign that was later imitated by Le Pen in France and among copycat organisations in Switzerland, Austria, and Holland, all led by far-right parties. With monetary policy, as with other political matters, the far right isn’t a throwback to a supposedly autarkic past, but a creature of our contemporary moment. Even their demands for sovereignty and autonomy are uttered with one eye on the global picture. The far right is not blind to how the world works. Rather, they are turning its weaknesses into their strengths.

—–

Quinn Slobodian is an associate professor of history at Wellesley College and the author of “Globalists: The End of Empire and the Birth of Neoliberalism.”

* * *

END

Van Eck International, the largest shareholder of Barrick is urging a joint venture and not a merger.

(courtesy Reuters/GATA)

Top Barrick shareholder urges joint venture in Nevada with Newmont, not full merger

 Section: 

By Ernest Scheyder and Liana B. Baker
Reuters
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Barrick Gold Corp.’s top shareholder said Tuesday the miner should focus on striking a joint venture deal in Nevada with rival Newmont Mining Corp. before considering a full-blown merger.

“My preference is a joint venture,” Joe Foster of the Van Eck International Investors Gold Fund said in a phone interview. “I don’t flat-out oppose a merger. If a merger is the only way to unify Nevada, then maybe, just maybe, that’s something we might consider. But as it stands the best path right now is to form a joint venture in Nevada.”

… 

 

.Last month Barrick launched an $18 billion takeover offer for Newmont, which Newmont rejected. Both sides have said they agree that their neighboring Nevada assets should be combined to cut costs, but they disagree on how this should be done. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-newmont-mining-m-a-barrick-gold/top-b…

* * *

Join GATA here:

Mining Investment Asia
Marina Bay Sands Conference and Exhibition Center
Singapore
Tuesday-Thursday, March 26-28

https://www.mininginvestmentasia.com/

Mines and Money Asia
Hong Kong Conference and Exhibition Center
Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Tuesday-Thursday, April 2-4

https://asia.minesandmoney.com/

* * *

Help keep GATA going

GATA is a civil rights and educational organization based in the United States and tax-exempt under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Its e-mail dispatches are free, and you can subscribe at:

http://www.gata.org

To contribute to GATA, please visit:

http://www.gata.org/node/16

END

Our good friend and GATA Sec is speaking at conferences in Singapore and Hong kong

(courtesy GATA)

GATA secretary to speak at conferences in Singapore and Hong Kong

 Section: 

2:24p ET Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Your secretary/treasurer will speak at the annual Mining Investment Asia conference in Singapore from March 26-28and the annual Mines and Money Asia conference in Hong Kong from April 2-4.

The Mining Investment Asia conference will be held at the Marina Bay Sands Conference and Exhibition center. The conference’s internet site is here:

https://www.mininginvestmentasia.com/

The Mines and Money Asia conference will be held at the Hong Kong Conference and Exhibition Center. The conference’s internet site is here:

https://asia.minesandmoney.com/

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

end

Gold swaps continue at the BIS and this is what is underpinning gold

(courtesy Robert Lambourne)

(GATA) Gold swaps by BIS rose by 56 tonnes in February

Submitted by cpowell on 02:55PM ET Thursday, March 7, 2019. Section: Daily Dispatches

By Robert Lambourne
Thursday, March 7, 2019

The recent monthly statements of account published by the Bank for International Settlements indicate that the bank is still actively trading gold swaps, which the bank uses to gain access to gold held by commercial banks.

There is not enough information in the monthly reports to calculate the exact amount of swaps, but based on the information in the BIS’ just-published statement of account for February 2019 —

https://www.bis.org/banking/balsheet/statofacc190228.pd f

— the bank’s gold swaps are estimated to be 303 tonnes compared to 247 tonnes at January 31, 2019, an increase of 56 tonnes. This compares to an estimated holding of 275 tonnes at December 31, 2018, and estimates of 308 tonnes in November, 372 tonnes in October, 238 tonnes in September and 370 tonnes in August 2018.

More background on the bank’s medium-term history of using gold swaps is available here:

http://www.gata.org/node/18825

On February 3 GATA published comments from a former gold industry executive describing the activities of the BIS in gold swaps in earlier decades:

http://www.gata.org/node/18828

The former executive wrote: “Effectively this process created a supply of ‘paper gold’ — sometimes but not always marked to market — that had a depressing effect on the gold price.”

It is interesting that there were swaps that did not mark to market. This appears to have happened at least once in more recent times. At March 31, 2017, the BIS annual report confirmed 438 tonnes of gold swaps, valued at 14,086.9 million in the Special Drawing Rights of the International Monetary Fund. Converting the SDRs into U.S. dollars, this is equivalent to a gold price per troy ounce of approximately $1,355. But the published market price of gold as of that date was approximately $1,245, so the swaps did not mark to market.

Indeed, a perusal of the gold price in the 12 months to March 31, 2017, indicates that the effective price of the gold swaps is equal to the highest market gold price during that 12 months, reached in the summer of 2016.

On the face of it this seems an odd coincidence. But if the gold swaps were undertaken with the intent of trying to suppress the price of gold, then perhaps this coincidence is not so strange. Perhaps the BIS’ counterparty to the swap was willing to undertake it if it was not only entitled to the return of its gold swapped with the BIS but also protected from a fall in the price of gold for the duration of the swaps.

In itself this unusual transaction does not prove gold price suppression but it would be consistent with price suppression as the reason for the swap.

—–

Robert Lambourne is a retired business executive in the United Kingdom who consults with GATA about the involvement of the Bank for International Settlements in the gold market.

* * *



iii) Other Physical stories
Due to the criminal conviction of trader Edmonds, the USA prosecution is seeking to halt the civil lawsuit. I was misinformed: all discoveries in a civil suit are public and because of that, the prosecution gives the defendants the right to plead the 5th if their testimony incriminates them
(courtesy zerohedge/Chris Powell)

US seeks halt in civil lawsuit accusing JP Morgan of manipulating metals market, citing criminal case

  • The U.S. wants a federal judge to halt a civil lawsuit accusing J. P. Morgan of manipulating precious metals markets. The Justice Department cited an ongoing criminal case as its reason for the request.
  • A former J. P. Morgan trader pleaded guilty in Connecticut last month to manipulation charges.
  • In the guilty plea, the trader said he had learned to make bogus trade orders from senior traders at the bank and that he used the strategy hundreds of times with the knowledge and consent of his immediate supervisors.

A sign of JP Morgan Chase Bank is seen in front of their headquarters tower in New York.

Amr Alfiky | Reuters
A sign of JP Morgan Chase Bank is seen in front of their headquarters tower in New York.

The Justice Department is asking a judge to put the brakes on a civil lawsuit against J. P. Morgan Chase, citing an ongoing probe into a “related criminal case” that involves alleged manipulation of precious metals markets.

The department wants a six-month postponement in the proceedings of the civil lawsuit, which was filed in 2015 by hedge fund manager Daniel Shak and two commodity traders. The government also says it could ask for a longer delay in the case, according to a court filing on Monday.

The move comes days after Shak’s lawyer, David Kovel, sought permission to reopen questioning of two former J. P. Morgan traders and the bank’s current global head of base and precious metals trading.

Kovel, in making the request with the Manhattan federal judge in the civil case, cited last month’s guilty plea by one of those former traders, John Edmonds, in federal court in Connecticut.

Edmonds admitted making bogus bids on precious metals contracts while working at the bank from 2009 to 2015.

Neither J. P. Morgan Chase nor Kovel’s clients have opposed the Justice Department’s request.

In arguing for a delay, the Justice Department said Shak’s lawsuit is “related” to Edmonds’ criminal case and that Edmonds has “pleaded guilty and acknowledged his own participation in such conduct, as well as that of other traders.”

“Edmonds awaits sentencing, but the broader investigation is ongoing,” the Justice Department said. The U.S. wants to delay the civil case “to protect the integrity of its ongoing criminal investigation,” it said.

J. P. Morgan did not respond to a request for comment by CNBC. Kovel declined to comment.

Tuesday night, after this story first was published, Judge Paul Engelmayer ordered the federal prosecutors to explain in detail by Monday why postponing proceedings in the civil lawsuit would not harm those involved, and why reopening questioning “would be detrimental to the Government’s ongoing criminal investigation.”

Englemayer also wrote that he regards Edmonds’ guilty plea “as potentially highly consequential” to the civil case.

In his guilty plea, the 36-year-old Edmonds said he had learned to make bogus trade orders from senior traders at the bank and that he used the strategy hundreds of times with the knowledge and consent of his immediate supervisors. He admitted to working with “unnamed co-conspirators” at J. P. Morgan, according to the Justice Department.

Kovel wants to question Edmonds again as well as Michael Nowak, the bank’s global head of base and precious metal trading, and former J. P. Morgan Chase Managing Director Robert Gottlieb. The three had previously answered questions under oath in the civil case.

Kovel said in court filings that Nowak was the immediate supervisor of Edmonds, while Gottlieb was Edmonds’ mentor.

In his prior deposition, Edmonds said that Gottlieb sat only a “couple feet” away from him for about five years, and that he was “somebody [he] looked up to in the business,” who helped guide and train him.

Nowak is described by Edmonds as his direct supervisor, with whom he would sometimes discuss trading strategies. Nowak was also the person responsible for overseeing the performance and risk of Edmonds’ portfolio, according to the deposition.

Edmonds also stated in his prior deposition that he would enter precious metals trades for both Nowak and Gottlieb, among others.

The civil lawsuit claims Shak and his fellow plaintiffs lost tens of millions of dollars as a result of actions by J. P. Morgan’s traders.

A federal judge tells traders that they can combine cases (with the other 6 banks) as they accused JPMorgan of rigging the precious metals market
(courtesy CNBC)

Federal judge tells traders they can combine cases accusing JP Morgan of rigging metals market

  • Litigation in a separate civil case has been put on hold until at least May at the behest of the Justice Department, which is investigating a “related criminal case” that involves alleged market manipulation by precious metals traders at J. P. Morgan.
  • Judge John Koeltl of the Southern District of New York appointed the White Plains, N.Y., law firm Lowey Dannenberg as interim lead counsel for the proposed class action.

71671201

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

A group of traders from across the U.S. who allege that J. P. Morgan Chase manipulated precious metals markets for years are one step closer to bringing a class action suit against the nation’s largest bank.

Earlier this month, a federal judge said five separate lawsuits making similar allegations against the bank could be combined, potentially including thousands of people who traded in the precious metals market from Jan. 2009 through Dec. 2015.

Litigation in a separate civil case has been put on hold until at least May at the behest of the Justice Department, which is investigating a “related criminal case” that involves alleged market manipulation by precious metals traders at J. P. Morgan.

J. P. Morgan declined to comment on this story.

Judge John Koeltl of the Southern District of New York appointed the White Plains, N.Y., law firm Lowey Dannenberg as interim lead counsel for the proposed class action.

Vincent Briganti, a partner at the firm, filed the first suit seeking class action status in November on behalf of Dominick Cognata, a trader who alleges he suffered losses due to J.P. Morgan’s illegal trading conduct in the silver and gold futures and options markets.

That was after the federal court in Connecticut unsealed a criminal plea agreement by John Edmonds, a former J.P. Morgan metals trader. In his guilty plea, Edmonds, who is 36-years old, admitted that he and other “unnamed co-conspirators” fraudulently manipulated the precious metals markets while they were employed at J. P. Morgan from 2009 to 2015.

Edmonds said he had learned the illegal trading tactics from senior traders, and then used them hundreds of times with the knowledge of and consent of his immediate supervisors.

Briganti’s lawsuit also names John Edmonds and a group of yet-to-be-identified precious metals traders and the bank as defendants.

On Wednesday, the lawyers sent a letter to Judge Koeltl saying they were having difficulty locating Edmonds to serve him legal papers and requested a 30-day extension to do so, which the judge granted on Thursday. Briganti noted that they have been in contact with Edmonds’ attorney in the criminal case. Edmonds’ attorney and Briganti could not be reached for comment.

“We are hopeful that this extension will result in completing service on Mr. Edmonds without formal motion practice and a request for alternative means of service,” Briganti said in the letter.

The next step in the civil case is for the plaintiffs to file an amended class action complaint and set a schedule for defendants to respond.

In addition to the proposed class action, J. P. Morgan also faces a separate civil suit which also accuses the bank of rigging precious metals markets.

end

March 4.2019

Parker City News

JP Morgan faces potential class action lawsuit after guilty pleas by a former metals trader

Traders from across the U.S. are banding together to accuse J. P. Morgan Chase of manipulating precious metals markets for years.

At least six lawsuits, all making similar allegations against the nation‘s largest bank, have been filed in New York federal court in the past month, since federal prosecutors in Connecticut with a former J. P. Morgan Chase metals trader.

The cases could potentially include thousands of people who traded in the precious metals market. The White Plains, N.Y., law firm Lowey Dannenberg is asking the court to combine the cases and name it as the lead.

The law firm‘s commodities group is led by Vincent Briganti, the attorney who filed the first lawsuit on behalf of Dominick Cognata, a New York resident who alleges he suffered losses due to J. P. Morgan‘s trading conduct in the silver and gold futures and options markets.

A combined case, seeking class action status, would include anyone who purchased or sold futures contracts or an option on NYMEX platinum or palladium or COMEX silver or gold between at least Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2015. The lawyers believe that “at least hundreds, if not thousands” of traders would be eligible to join the case.

Named as defendants in all of the lawsuits are John Edmonds, a 36-year old former metals trader at J. P. Morgan, a group of yet-to-be-identified precious metals traders and the bank.

Edmonds, a New York resident, pleaded guilty in October to one count of conspiracy to defraud the market and manipulate prices of precious metals futures contracts and one count of commodities fraud. In the criminal plea, Edmonds admitted that he and other “unnamed co- conspirators” at J. P. Morgan, fraudulently manipulated precious metals markets from 2009 to 2015, the same time frame covered in the class action suits.

Briganti filed the initial class action on Nov. 7, just one day after the Justice Department unsealed Edmonds‘ plea in the U.S. District Court of Connecticut.

Edmonds admitted in his guilty plea that he deployed the illegal trading scheme hundreds of times with the direct knowledge and consent of his immediate supervisors. Plaintiffs say they have suffered economic injury, including monetary losses, as a direct result of actions by Edmonds and the other unnamed J. P. Morgan metals traders in the futures and options contracts.

One of the suits alleges that “the number of unlawful trades that JP Morgan traders executed in precious metals futures markets is at least in the thousands.”

J. P. Morgan declined to comment. Lowey Dannenberg did not respond to a request for comment by CNBC.

The Justice Department‘s criminal investigation is still ongoing and recently caused a separate related civil case to be put on hold for at least six months while the government continues its investigation. That civil lawsuit, which also accuses J. P. Morgan of rigging the precious metals market, was filed in 2015 by hedge fund manager Daniel Shak and two commodity traders.

After reviewing the details of the plea agreement, David Kovel, the attorney for Shak‘s suit, sought to re- interview Edmonds, along with two other current and former senior traders at the bank. However, the government argued that reopening questioning would be detrimental to the ongoing criminal investigation. The federal judge overseeing the proceedings ordered a six-month stay in the civil case.

Kovel declined to comment.

Edmonds was originally scheduled to be sentenced in Hartford, Conn., on Wednesday, Dec. 19, but a court filing on Nov. 27 shows the sentencing has been postponed until June. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney for Connecticut could not elaborate on why the sentencing was postponed since the court filing is under seal.

-END-

Justice Department stalls another class action in gold market rigging, this one against JPM

 Section: 

9:47a ET Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Proceedings in the federal class-action anti-trust lawsuit against JPMorganChase charging the investment bank with manipulating the gold and silver futures markets —

http://www.gata.org/node/18844

— have been suspended for three months at the request of the U.S. Justice Department, just as the department has arranged suspension of proceedings in the class-action anti-trust lawsuit against Deutsche Bank charging similar market manipulation.

… 

In both cases the Justice Department has told U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York that proceedings would jeopardize its criminal investigation into market rigging, which has been admitted by a former JPMorganChase trader, John Edmonds, who awaits sentencing.

According to court filings, the White Plains, New York, law firm representing the plaintiffs against JPMorganChase, Lowey Dannenberg, concurred in the government’s request to suspend proceedings. The stay is to continue for three months and may be extended.

The Justice Department’s motion, granted by the court on February 26 —

http://www.gata.org/files/JPMorganChaseClassActionStay.pdf

— said “the government is not seeking an open-ended stay that could indefinitely postpone this matter and thus jeopardize the parties’ interests in a timely resolution.” The motion added, “Any developments in the criminal case during the period the consolidated action is stayed may reduce or completely resolve the need to litigate certain issues in the consolidated action.”

Much of the Justice Department’s motion is redacted to conceal from the public evidence still under investigation. Edmonds has said he and other traders manipulated the gold and silver markets for years with the knowledge of their supervisors at JPMorganChase. In its motion to conceal that evidence, also granted by the court on February 26, the Justice Department said disclosure “could lead to destruction of evidence, flight from prosecution, and otherwise interfere with the government’s ability to conduct its investigation”:

http://www.gata.org/files/JPMorganChaseClassActionStaySeal.pdf

Monetary metals investors may be skeptical of the Justice Department’s stalling the Deutsche Bank and JPMorganChase cases, since the department and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission do not seem ever to have responded conscientiously to complaints of gold and silver market rigging until the class actions commenced.

How much time will the court give the Justice Department to delay getting to the bottom of the issue? The court might hasten matters if enough monetary metals mining companies protested the harm done to them and their shareholders by market rigging, but of course most monetary metals mining companies don’t mind at all.

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

* * *

Help keep GATA going:

GATA is a civil rights and educational organization based in the United States and tax-exempt under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Its e-mail dispatches are free, and you can subscribe at:

http://www.gata.org

To contribute to GATA, please visit:

http://www.gata.org/node/16

-END-

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

i) Chinese yuan vs USA dollar/CLOSED/ LAST AT: 6.7072/

 

//OFFSHORE YUAN:  6.7170   /shanghai bourse CLOSED UP 4.32 POINTS OR 0.14% /

 

HANG SANG CLOSED DOWN 258.15 POINTS OR 0.89%

 

 

2. Nikkei closed DOWN 140.80 POINTS OR 0.65%

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Europe stocks OPENED RED

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

/USA dollar index RISES TO 96.72/Euro FALLS TO 1.1303

3b Japan 10 year bond yield: FALLS TO. +.01/ !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 111.72/ THIS IS TROUBLESOME AS BANK OF JAPAN IS RUNNING OUT OF BONDS TO BUY./JAPAN 10 YR YIELD IS NOW TARGETED AT .11%/JAPAN LOSING CONTROL OF THEIR BOND MARKET

 

3c Nikkei now JUST BELOW 17,000

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

3e WTI:: 56.84 and Brent: 66.88

3f Gold DOWN/JAPANESE Yen DOWN CHINESE YUAN:   ON -SHORE  UP  /OFF- SHORE: UP

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

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

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

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund FALLS TO +.13%/Italian 10 yr bond yield UP to 2.62% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD UP TO 1.13%…ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD/GERMAN BUND: 2.49: DANGEROUS FOR THE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM

3j Greek 10 year bond yield RISES TO : 3.77

3k Gold at $1286.00 silver at:15.07   7 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $18.50

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble DOWN 5/100 in roubles/dollar) 65.97

3m oil into the 56 dollar handle for WTI and 66 handle for Brent/

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

JAPAN ON JAN 29.2016 INITIATES NIRP. THIS MORNING THEY SIGNAL THEY MAY END NIRP. TODAY THE USA/YEN TRADES TO 111.72 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 1.0049 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.1365 well above the floor set by the Swiss Finance Minister. Thomas Jordan, chief of the Swiss National Bank continues to purchase euros trying to lower value of the Swiss Franc.

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

3r the 10 Year German bund now POSITIVE territory with the 10 year FALLING to +0.13%

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 2.68% early this morning. Thirty year rate at 3.06%

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

6.  TURKISH LIRA:  UP  TO 5.4365

 

Markets Slide On Worsening Global Growth Outlook, All Eyes On Draghi

World stocks were stuck in their worst run of 2019, declining for a fourth straight day their longest losing streak since December’s rout, as global markets dropped and US equity futures slumped with the EMini pulling further away from the “quad resistance” at 2,800 amid renewed concerns about global growth after the OECD downgraded almost every growth outlook for G-20 nations, as investors waited for confirmation that, as Reuters diplomatically put it, “the ECB will start shoveling cheap cash at the euro zone again” when it cuts its growth and inflation forecasts again.

“We’re seeing a slowdown in the economy, we’re seeing a slowdown in corporate earnings,” Oliver Pursche, chief market strategist at Bruderman Asset Management, told Bloomberg TV in New York. “The market is waiting to see if things are going to turn out better or worse than they expect, and we just don’t know.”

European shares retreated further from five-month highs after the Stoxx Europe 600 Index slid ahead of what is widely expected to be a rather dour ECB meeting where the highlight may be the announcement of further stimulus to the economy through a new round of bank funding, the so-called TLTRO program. The Stoxx 600 was dragged lower by the trade-proxy mining and auto sectors, although the move was exaggerated by several stocks trading ex-dividend, such as Rio Tinto, BHP Group and Roche Holding. The defensive telecoms, utilities and food sectors once again outperformed.

A return to what was once its flagship crisis-fighting tool would be a wrenching change of direction for the ECB just months after it wound down its 2.6 trillion euro QE program, but Head of investments at UK fund manager Hermes, Eoin Murray, said he wondered how much impact such measures, or even more U.S. Fed stimulus, would have, considering the potency has tended to wane with every new round in recent years.

“I just don’t think it will have the power to get the economy to the point of takeoff,” Murray said.

Italy’s government bonds rallied to a 7-month high while its banks, which used the biggest share of the previous round of cheap central bank loans, rose 0.1% but remained below the highs hit in the previous session.

Earlier in Asia, shares fell in Japan and Hong Kong, with China again bucking the trend. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged 0.3% lower on Thursday, yet hovering not far from its five-month high marked last week, and was up 10% year-to-date. Japan’s Nikkei average fell 0.7 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 0.7 percent and Chinese blue-chips snapped a four-day winning streak as the boost from new stimulus plans there ran into the sand.

Contracts on the S&P 500 hit a three-week low failing to break out decisively above the 2,800 “quadruple top” and may extend a three-day drop stocks after the US trade deficit widened to a 10-year high and private companies added fewer employees than expected.

Earlier this week, the S&P 500 posted its biggest one-day decline in a month, as investors sought reasons to buy after a near 20 percent rally since the start the year: “For some time, markets had been pricing in good news, namely that the talks between the U.S. and China will likely go well,” said Tatsushi Maeno, senior strategist at Okasan Asset Management. “Now markets are having a pause.”

Adding to concerns about the talks was data that showed the U.S. goods trade deficit surged to a record high in 2018 as strong domestic demand pulled in imports, despite the Trump administration’s “America First” policies aimed at shrinking the gap. Ahead of tomorrow’s payrolls report, ADP showed private payrolls increased by 183,000 in February after surging 300,000 in January, also missing expectations.

In Rates, treasuries ticked higher while European bonds were mixed.

In FX, the euro traded at $1.1304, hovering near a two-week low ahead of the ECB and its expected news on its cheap long-term loans for banks, known as Targeted Long-Term Refinancing Operations (TLTROs). Volumes were low during the London session across the major currencies as the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index headed for a seventh day of gains, its longest winning streak in more than three weeks, and Treasuries edged higher. The DXY dollar index barely moved at 96.887.

The Canadian and Australian dollar sank to two-month lows on Wednesday as traders scaled back holdings on expectations policy-makers would leave interest rates alone in the foreseeable future or even lower them to counter their softening economies. Adding to the Aussie’s woes on Thursday was data showing local retailers suffered another bleak month in January, in a sign overall economic momentum was slowing.

Brexit uncertainty kept the pound below an eight-month high hit last week as investors waited for some clarity to emerge out of negotiations between Britain and the European Union. Diplomats said talks in Brussels on Tuesday led by British Prime Minister Theresa May’s chief lawyer, Geoffrey Cox, failed to find common ground, with three weeks to go before Britain’s scheduled departure on March 29.

“Markets are getting conflicting signals from lawmakers in Britain and the negative news flow from Brussels on the negotiation process, and that is keeping the pound in a tight range,” said Nikolay Markov, a senior economist at Pictet Asset Management.

In the latest brexit news, EU officials are reportedly pessimistic about reaching a Brexit breakthrough. Negotiators suspect that whatever they offer will not be enough to get Parliament to back PM May’s Brexit deal; according to sources. Furthermore, Brussels believes that unrealistic expectations have build up in London. EU officials have urged the UK to table fresh proposals within the next 48 hours and said they will work non-stop over the weekend if “acceptable” ideas are received to break the Irish backstop impasse.

In central bank news, Riksbank’s Ingves said the need for a highly expansionary monetary policy has decreased slightly; as inflation has become established close to the target and confidence in the target has increase. Adding that the rate path is a forecast not a guarantee. Separately, BoE’s Tenreyro says a disorderly Brexit is more likely to require loosening of monetary policy than tightening, adding that it is easy to envisage other scenarios which would require a opposing response. Sterling is likely to appreciate after a smooth Brexit, which would limit inflation pressure. Going on to say that a small amount of tightening will be needed over the next 3 years assuming a smooth Brexit.

Elsewhere, oil edged up amid ongoing OPEC-led supply cuts and U.S. sanctions against exporters Venezuela and Iran, although prices were prevented from rising further by record U.S. crude output and rising commercial fuel inventories. U.S. crude futures rose 0.1 percent to $56.29 per barrel, moving closer to its 3-1/2-month high of $57.88 touched Friday, while international benchmark Brent futures gained 0.3 percent to $66.20 per barrel.

Expected data include jobless claims. Costco and Kroger are among companies reporting earnings

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures down 0.2% to 2,765.25
  • STOXX Europe 600 down 0.3% to 374.30
  • MXAP down 0.6% to 158.66
  • MXAPJ down 0.4% to 524.53
  • Nikkei down 0.7% to 21,456.01
  • Topix down 0.8% to 1,601.66
  • Hang Seng Index down 0.9% to 28,779.45
  • Shanghai Composite up 0.1% to 3,106.42
  • Sensex up 0.3% to 36,747.39
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 0.3% to 6,263.89
  • Kospi down 0.5% to 2,165.79
  • German 10Y yield unchanged at 0.128%
  • Euro up 0.02% to $1.1309
  • Italian 10Y yield fell 11.4 bps to 2.235%
  • Spanish 10Y yield rose 1.5 bps to 1.128%
  • Brent futures up 0.9% to $66.55/bbl
  • Gold spot little changed at $1,286.50
  • U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 96.88

Top Overnight News from Bloomberg

  • European Central Bank officials are poised to cut their economic forecasts by enough to justify another round of loans for banks, according to people with knowledge of the matter
  • European officials are pessimistic about the chances of a breakthrough in Brexit talks this week, as negotiators suspect that whatever they offer won’t be enough to get Parliament to back Theresa May’s deal
  • U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May’s government outlined steps to develop technology to keep the Irish border open after Brexit even if Britain is unable to negotiate a trade deal with the European Union
  • The Bank of England doesn’t need to rush to raise interest rates until the uncertainty of Brexit lifts, according to policy maker Michael Saunders. In a speech in London Wednesday, Saunders, considered one of the most hawkish members of the Monetary Policy Committee, said that tame inflation and a slowdown in growth meant officials could adopt a wait-and-see approach as Brexit plays out
  • President Donald Trump is pushing for U.S. negotiators to close a trade deal with China soon, as he is concerned that he needs a big win on the international stage — and the stock market bump that would come with it — in advance of his re-election campaign
  • Trump said he’d be very disappointed in Kim Jong Un if reports are accurate that North Korea has begun rebuilding a missile test site it dismantled last year
  • China has drafted tougher rules for its 12.7 trillion yuan ($1.9 trillion) private fund industry, tightening scrutiny as the government reins in financial risks, according to people familiar with the matter
  • Bill Browder has filed a criminal complaint alleging that Swedbank AB handled $176 million connected to the death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. The allegations follow separate claims that tie Swedbank to almost $6 billion in suspicious transactions
  • A smooth Brexit outcome won’t be enough by itself to justify higher interest rates, according to Bank of England policy maker Silvana Tenreyro, who said she’d wait to see stronger domestic price pressure

Asian stocks were mostly lower following a three-day losing streak on Wall Street where the Dow and S&P fell to a three-week low. ASX 200 (+0.3%) was kept afloat by its telecom and utilities sectors, although upside was capped by the underperformance of its heavyweight metal and mining names. Meanwhile, Nikkei 225 (-0.6%) gave up the 21,500 level as the domestic currency gains weighed on the Japanese index. Semi-conductor name Renesas fell over 15% after Nikkei reported the company is to temporarily halt operations at 13 of its 14 production facilities amid uncertainty in China, thus Japanese chipmakers were hit in sympathy. Elsewhere Hang Seng (-0.9%) and Shanghai Comp. (+0.1%) conformed to the overall risk tone with the former pressured by Geely shares after the company fell over 3.5% amid dismal February sales, moreover the Chinese stocks wobbled after Huawei filed a law suit against the US government, but the indices ultimately came off worst levels.

Top Asian News

  • MSCI Urges China to Ease Ownership Limits After Dropping Stock
  • China’s Record Tax Cuts Spell ‘Tightest Year’ for Local Regions
  • China Said to Mull Tougher Rules on Private Equity, Hedge Funds
  • Emerging-Debt Rally Raises Concern as Frontier Borrowers Rush In
  • Thai Court Disbands Thaksin-Linked Party That Chose Princess

Major European indices are in the red [Euro Stoxx 50 -0.4%] little changed from opening losses, with no standout under/out-performing index as markets take the lead from a subdued overnight session ahead of upcoming key risk events. Sectors are mixed, with some underperformance seen in material names, with the sector likely weighed on by growth concerns; interestingly, there was a report from a Washington think tank which stated that China’s economy is around 12% smaller than the official figure. Notable movers this morning include, Rio Tinto (-7.3%) who are at the bottom of the Stoxx 600 after being downgraded to sell at Societe Generale. Dialog Semiconductor (-0.8%) are also in the red weighed on by the poor performance of Japanese listed Renesas who fell by 15% following Nikkei reports that the Co. are temporarily halting 13/14 of their production facilities amidst uncertainty in China. Elsewhere, and towards the top of the Stoxx 600 are Melrose (+3.4%) after their FY revenue came in significantly above the prior at GBP 8.605bln vs. Prev. GBP 2.092bln.

Top European News

  • BAE Production Surge for $8 Billion in Howitzers Delayed by Army
  • Merck KGaA Sees First Growth in Annual Profit Since 2016
  • Aviva Drops Most in Three Months; Shore Sees Tough Task for CEO
  • U.K. House Prices Rebound With Near 6% Surge in February

In FX, NZD/AUD are marginal G10 outperformers, but largely due to a degree of consolidation, profit taking and short covering following heavy losses. Moreover, extremely rangebound trade overall/elsewhere somewhat flatter the actual extent of the recoveries that only equate to between 0.15-0.2% vs the Usd. Nevertheless, the Kiwi and Aussie have clambered off recent lows to sit a bit more comfortably above 0.6750 and 0.7000 respectively as the Aud/Nzd cross rebounds towards 1.0400.

  • CAD – The other main non-US Dollar has also gleaned some much needed traction after yesterday’s post-BoC slide, but remains precarious within a 1.3425-50 range vs the Greenback as attention turns to the upcoming EPR presented by Deputy Governor Patterson that could underscore the more dovish or uncertain outlook in terms of the timing of policy normalisation.
  • CHF/EUR/JPY/GBP – All narrowly mixed vs the Greenback, and as noted above all broadly stuck in tight confines with the Franc meandering between 1.0040-55 and single currency rooted to 1.1300, albeit hovering just above the big figure following recent breaches below that threatened a steeper decline. Of course, a dovish ECB later may yet see the Euro buckle completely, but technically it remains resilient vs the Dollar having held above Fib support around 1.1305. Note also, big option expiries could limit moves post-ECB, at least into the NY cut, as 2 bn sits at 1.1250 and a mega 3.7 bn from 1.1360-80, if the ECB disappoints – for a full preview of the March policy meeting check out the Research Suite. Meanwhile, Usd/Jpy looks increasingly capped around 112.00 after several attempted breakouts, but again hefty expiries may keep the headline pair contained given a series of 1 bn options stacked all the way down to 111.25-35 (just above the 200 DMA at 111.39) and 1.5 bn from 112.00-05. Turning to Cable, 1.3200-1.3100 essentially covers the recent range with moves towards the top or bottom correlating closely with the tone regarding ongoing Brexit negotiations.
  • SEK/NOK – The Swedish Krona has retreated from circa 10.5000 vs the Eur to a low just shy of 10.5600 in wake of comments from Riksbank Governor Ingves that could arguably be perceived as more ambiguous with regard to guidance for another 25 bp repo rate hike in H1 this year. Conversely, the Nok has not been unduly upset by a significant miss in Norwegian manufacturing output and remains around 9.8000 vs the Eur, perhaps with some support from firmer oil prices.

In commodities, Brent (+0.9%) and WTI (+0.9%) prices are firmer, with the complex likely retracing some of the recent losses from the API and EIA crude builds this week coming in above expectations at 7.4mln and 7.1mln respectively; although both Brent and WTI prices are trading within a tight range of around USD 1/bbl on the lack of fundamentals. In terms of recent news flow Saudi Energy Minister Al Falih has reported crude exports of around 7-8mln BPD. Separately, US State Department official has stated that talks are ongoing with the 8 countries who received a waiver in November, as Washington seeks to lower Iranian oil purchases to zero; alongside, India wanting to continue Iranian oil purchases at around 300k BPD in any waiver extension. Elsewhere, China’s customs union have confirmed that it has suspended canola imports from Canada’s Richardson International. Gold (U/C) is unchanged in a similar vain to the dollar, ahead of key events this week including the ECB rate decision later today. Elsewhere, China’s Hebei province is to reduce steel capacity by 14mln tonnes annually this year and next, in an attempt to improve air quality.

Looking at the day ahead, the data this morning includes February Halifax house price index stats for the UK and the final Q4 GDP revisions for the Euro Area (no change from the +0.2% qoq advanced reading expected). The ECB meeting follows that while in the US we’ve got the latest weekly initial jobless claims reading, final Q4 nonfarm productivity and unit labour costs data and the January consumer credit print. Away from that we’re due to hear from the BoE’s Tenreyro this morning and the Fed’s Brainard this afternoon.

US Event Calendar

  • 7:30am: Challenger Job Cuts YoY, prior 18.7%
  • 8:30am: Initial Jobless Claims, est. 225,000, prior 225,000; Continuing Claims, est. 1.77m, prior 1.81m
  • 8:30am: Nonfarm Productivity, est. 1.5%, prior 2.3%; Unit Labor Costs, est. 1.7%, prior 0.9%
  • 9:45am: Bloomberg Consumer Comfort, prior 61
  • 12pm: Household Change in Net Worth, prior $2.07t
  • 3pm: Consumer Credit, est. $17.0b, prior $16.6b

DB’s Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

How time flies. As of 8.22pm GMT last night it was officially ten years to the minute that the S&P 500 had hit its famous 2009 intraday low of 666.79. I remember being transfixed by the CNBC stream of unfolding events at home. I remember less as to whether I rung my broker and screamed “buy” at him. The fact that I’m currently worrying about carpets breaking my house renovation budget to a terminal degree suggests I didn’t. Anyway, at that point it was the lowest the index had been since the mid-90s. On a closing basis the low actually came on March 9th 2009 when it hit 676.53. Since that all-time low the S&P is up ‘a mere’ 401% in total return terms although it doesn’t lead the way with the NASDAQ up an even more impressive 557%. Compare that to Europe where the STOXX 600 is up ‘just’ 233%. For credit guys US HY has returned 171% while Treasuries and Bunds have returned just 27% and 40% respectively. There is one market which is negative over the last 10 years and that goes to the Greek Equity market, which is down 41%.

This week hasn’t been quite so interesting, but it should step up a gear into the weekend when we can all enjoy the rest before the upcoming Brexit storm. So we have an ECB meeting to look forward to today, which although will likely be short of any policy changes, should be made all the more interesting by what is or isn’t said on TLTRO. That was certainly given an added focus post Bloomberg headlines yesterday and we’ll touch on those shortly, but just in terms of what our economists expect today, Mark Wall feels like any policy announcement would be a positive surprise. He notes that the latest comments from Council members imply that even the hawks have turned less optimistic. The “patience” mantra is consistent with extending the time commitment to unchanged policy rates for six months. However, the uncertain duration of the economic weakness has the centre of the committee signalling a wait and see approach, in particular with the TLTRO decision. Mark believes that one option for the Council would be to extend forward guidance as a down-payment to buy market goodwill while the ECB examines what it can do and needs to do on TLTROs. More in Mark’s preview here .

Back to the ECB story that hit the wires just after European lunch yesterday on Bloomberg. The main crux of it was that the Council is likely to cut economic forecasts by enough “to justify another bout of loans for banks” but that “a full announcement on new loans may not come” today. Instead, the article suggests that officials are preparing the ground for a new TLTRO but are not yet ready to announce on it. So, similar to Mark’s view.

The talk amongst the floor was that there wasn’t much in the way of new information in the story, both with regards to likely downgraded forecasts and the lack of a TLTRO announcement (it certainly fits with the view of our economists). Indeed, the reaction for equity markets suggested that there is already a reasonable element of this priced in with indices quickly spiking but then reversing just as quickly to end the day broadly lower. That was the case for the STOXX 600, which finished -0.04% and -0.36% off the highs. The DAX (-0.28%) and CAC (-0.16%) also closed in the red although the FTSE MIB (+0.65%) and European Banks (+0.24%) – despite adopting a similar course of travel – did manage to stay onside by the close as markets welcomed a bit more clarity for the two areas that would most directly benefit from further long-term lending.

US markets were on the soft side as Europe closed but got progressively weaker with the S&P 500, DOW and NASDAQ down -0.65%, -0.52% and -0.93% respectively. That’s now 6 down days out of the last 7 for the S&P. That’s the first such stretch of the year, and through three sessions, the S&P 500 is also on track for its worst week of the year. Energy and healthcare did much of the damage in the US, with the former not helped by WTI falling -0.60%. Official US data showed a 7.1 million barrel build in inventories last week, smashing estimates and sparking some worries about fuel demand.

There were positive headlines on the trade front, but they failed to support equities. Bloomberg reported that President Trump is pressuring his trade team to reach a final deal with China soon, in order to support equities. Separately, the South China Morning Post suggested that China will institute new rules to protect foreign investors from forced technology transfers to their Chinese partners, a key area of contention between the US and China in the past. Such a move could help President Trump sell a negotiated deal as a “win.” The same news outlet also reported Trump as saying yesterday that trade talks with China are going well and that either there would be a good deal or it’s not going to be a deal, but I think they’re moving along very nicely.

As equities slid, rates rallied which included some second guessing as to what sort of tone the ECB will deliver today. Bunds rallied -4.2bps, although in fairness, were already a couple of basis points lower prior to the ECB headlines hitting, while yields in Italy, Spain and Portugal were -11.7bps, -4.2bps and -3.6bps lower respectively, positively benefiting from TLTRO hopes. At 2.586%, BTPs are back to testing the January yield lows again, which were then the lowest since July last year. The BTP-Bund spread is also now down to 246bps and within 6bps of the January low. Those moves in Europe, in addition to the oil move and some of the data, also appeared to drag down Treasuries with yields ending -2.4bps lower.

Markets in Asia this morning are following Wall Street’s lead with the Nikkei (-0.88%), Hang Seng (-0.60%), Shanghai Comp (-0.21%) and Kospi (-0.52%) all in the red. Futures on the S&P 500 are also down -0.18%. There hasn’t been much in the way of new newsflow overnight, however, China’s Finance Minister Liu Kun has said that the tax cuts announced this week for 2019 could exceed the proposed plan of CNY 2tn ($298 billion) as the ministry will put tax reduction at the top of its agenda this year. He further added that the government will work to ensure reduction across all the sectors, with a focus on manufactures and small firms.

Back to yesterday, where Brexit talks appear to be heading nowhere very fast again, with officials describing the talks as “difficult.” Prime Minister May has committed to bringing her deal to a parliamentary vote next Tuesday, meaning the UK negotiators have a deadline of Sunday night or Monday morning to seal new details on the deal. Bloomberg reported that if the vote fails next week, May will not re-engage with Brussels for new concessions, meaning the vote on Tuesday is likely the last chance before policymakers turn to an extension of Article 50 request and a scratching of heads as to what comes next. These timelines always seem to shift, but it certainly looks like by this time next week, we’ll know if the March 21-22 EU Summit will be used to finalise the withdrawal agreement or to approve an extension to article 50.

In other news, the highlight of the US data releases yesterday was the ADP employment change reading for February, which came in at a moderately below market 183k (vs. 190k expected), albeit one that is unlikely to move the payrolls expectations dial tomorrow. Also out yesterday was the December trade balance in the US, which confirmed a wider-than-expected deficit of $59.3bn during the month – and notably the widest of the current economic expansion. The widening reflects strong US economic growth and associated demand for imports, as well as more tepid demand abroad, limiting scope for US export growth.

New York Fed President Williams spoke publicly yesterday and provided further confirmation that the Fed is on hold for now. He suggested that the current fed funds rate is right at its neutral level, though he also said that he expects economic growth to be around 2% this year. That suggests that if we get full-year growth of around 2.3% – as DB economists and the FOMC median forecast project – it would likely be enough for him to go back to supporting a rate hike later this year.

Also generating a few headlines yesterday but ultimately not really impacting markets was the OECD’s latest economic forecasts. The biggest downgrades were unsurprisingly made in Europe where 2019 growth for Germany is now expected to be 0.7% compared to previous expectations for 1.6%, and Italy to -0.2% from 1.3%. The latter clearly therefore predicting a recession, which to be fair, it’s already in on a technical definition. World growth this year is expected to be 3.3% compared to the 3.5% forecast made in November.

To the day ahead now, where the data this morning includes February Halifax house price index stats for the UK and the final Q4 GDP revisions for the Euro Area (no change from the +0.2% qoq advanced reading expected). The ECB meeting follows that while in the US we’ve got the latest weekly initial jobless claims reading, final Q4 nonfarm productivity and unit labour costs data and the January consumer credit print. Away from that we’re due to hear from the BoE’s Tenreyro this morning and the Fed’s Brainard this afternoon.

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)THURSDAY MORNING/ WEDNESDAY NIGHT: 

SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 4.32 POINTS OR 0.14% //Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 258.15 POINTS OR 0.89%  /The Nikkei closed DOWN  140.80 POINTS OR 0.65%/ Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP .28%

/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed UP  at 6.7072 AS TRUCE DECLARED FOR 3 MONTHS /Oil UP to 56.84 dollars per barrel for WTI and 65.78 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED RED 

ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED UP // LAST AT 6.7072 AGAINST THE DOLLAR. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.7170: / TRADE TALKS NOW ON/MAJOR PROBLEMS AT HUAWEI /CFO ARRESTED  : /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING STRONGER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /CHINA RETALIATES WITH TARIFFS/ TRUMP RESPONDS TO NEW TARIFFS AND IT NOW A FULL TRADE WAR COMMENCED

 

3 a NORTH KOREA/USA

 

 

 

i)North Korea/

This does not look good at all: an artificial 2.1 earthquake detected in North Korea and it was due to artificial seismic activity as a result of an explosion inside a mine

(courtesy zerohedge)

“Artificial” Magnitude 2.1 Earthquake Detected In North Korea

This doesn’t look good…

Two days after reports about North Korea rebuilding a long-range missile test site surfaced in Western media, the Korea Times reported Thursday that a 2.1-magnitude earthquake has been detected in North Korea.

Most alarmingly, the Korean Meteorological Administration said the quake was the result of “artificial” seismic activity, presumably the result of an explosion inside a mine.

“The epicenter is measured to be near the land surface,” one official reportedly said.

China

While it’s too early to say whether this was the result of what would be the country’s seventh nuclear test, it’s worth noting that two of the North’s previous launches generated earthquakes with magnitudes 2.1 and 3.4, respectively. Though experts have also warned that previous tests may have created instability created by past test launches (or maybe even the country’s underground nuclear testing facility has finally completely collapsed).

Asked about reports that North Korea had started rebuilding the long-range missile facility, President Trump said he’d be “very, very disappointed” if they proved true. Those reports were followed up on Thursday by analyst speculation that the launch site might already be operational.

But imagine what Trump would say if Kim jumped straight to another nuclear test, despite promising that he would continue to observe the moratorium on missile launches and nuclear tests that has persisted since November 2017?

3 b JAPAN AFFAIRS

3 C CHINA

China/the globe

A good indicator of the deterioration in the global economy: semiconductor orders from China plunges the greatest since 2008

(courtesy zerohedge)

Beige Book Shocker: “Semiconductor Orders From China Plunged The Most Since The Collapse Of Lehman”

While the latest Beige Book released earlier today carried the usual boring mix of self-serving observations by Fed officials (“slight to moderate” growth in a quarter in which the Atlanta Fed sees GDP plunging to 0.5%) and a handful of enlightening anecdotes, all of which confirmed that the US economy was rapidly slowing as expected with the word “strong” appearing 37 times, compared to 58x in the January and 83x in October while the word “weak-” rose to 34x, up from 13x seven weeks ago and 19x in October, there was one stunner contained in today’s release which may spell serious pain for stocks.

But first we bring your attention to chip and semiconductor bellwether Micron which tumbled as much as 6.2%, its biggest decline in a month, as Wall Street grows increasingly bearish on memory-chip pricing. According to analysis by DRAMeXchange, PC DRAM contract prices will be down a whopping 30% in the first quarter, and since inventory levels are still high, there is little hope of a reversal anytime soon. The Q1 price drop would be the worst since 2011, while a shortage of low-end CPUs is exacerbating the problem, eliminating an avenue for demand growth. “The overall market has thus entered freefall, meaning that large reductions in prices aren’t going to be effective in driving sales,” according to DRAMeXchange.

As a result, Cleveland Research cut its 2019 revenue estimate to $24 billion from $25.5 billion, citing those same DRAM price headwinds.

And, as shown below, even though Micron tumbled in the past week after surging nearly 50% from its December lows, retracing nearly half of the gain, the broader semiconductor space – as represented by the SMH VanEck Semiconductor ETF – has yet to follow in Micron’s footsteps; in fact it appears to be immune from the renewed concerns surrounding the global economy and the US-China trade negotiations in particular.

Which brings us back to today’s beige book, and one specific disclosure which suggests that the broader semiconductor space – by many seen as a leading indicator for China’s economy – is about to implode.

As the Boston Fed section of the Beige Book noted, there were two key references to the semiconductor industry. The first one, while not critical was more of an amusing anecdote why the US labor market has been persistently “strong” as most high frequency indicators have been rolling over. This is what the Beige Book said about the labor market in the context of the semi sector:

A semiconductor manufacturer facing big declines in demand from China put a hiring freeze in place, but they were reluctant to institute layoffs since it takes three to six months to train new workers.

It was the second Boston Fed reference to the semi sector that was far more critical: this is what the Boston Fed said regarding anecdotal reference to manufacturing and related services.

Two [firms] reported substantial drops in sales and two reported significant weakness. The two firms that reported serious issues were a semiconductor manufacturer and a furniture builder…. The semiconductor firm sells mostly to the auto industry and said that a 40 percent drop in new orders from China was the biggest fall in sales since the collapse of Lehman in 2008. Two other firms, both with heavy exposure to semiconductors, said that the market had slowed significantly since earlier in 2018 – Link.

So let’s see: Micron is tumbling, and is down over 30% from where it was a year ago as DRAM pricing plummets confirming demand has imploded, even as the broader semiconductor ETF is basically where it was a year ago this time. And yet, according to the most real-time, and some would say honest representation of the industry (as anonymous Beige Book respondents don’t have to worry about their shareholders dumping their stock so they tend to be far more honest than more publicly reporting companies), a semi firm just reported a 40 percent drop in new orders from China” which was “the biggest fall in sales since the collapse of Lehman in 2008.

As for what this observation means for China’s economy, for which the semiconductor  space has long been seen as the best proxy, we leave it up to readers to make up their minds just how bullish this news is and whether it merits the S&P trading just a few percent below its September all time highs.

end
China  responds after using the USA for playing judge, jury and executioner
(courtesy zerohedge)

“Totally Reasonable” For Huawei To Sue US For Playing “Judge, Jury And Executioner”, Beijing Says

As we previewed earlier this week, Huawei filed a lawsuit late Wednesday evening against the US over a law banning government agencies and contractors from buying equipment made by Huawei and fellow Chinese telecoms firm ZTE Corp. The suit accused Congress of unconstitutionally punishing Huawei with Section 889 of the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, which Huawei said had deprived it of business because the law not only restricted Huawei from serving US customers, but also some of its international customers as well (the law bars US government agencies from contracting with or awarding grants or loans to third parties who buy Huawei equipment and services).

Huawei

Huawei Chairman Guo Ping – who last week mocked perceived US hypocrisy by reminding the crowd of some of the more scandalous claims from the Snowden leaks – said Thursday in a statement circulated to US and Chinese media that, by passing the NDAA, Congress had opted to play “judge, jury and executioner” without giving Huawei the opportunity to defend itself, per the Wall Street Journal.

“In enacting the NDAA, Congress acted unconstitutionally as judge, jury and executioner,” said Guo Ping, one of Huawei’s chairmen, in Shenzhen on Thursday. “Regrettably, the NDAA was enacted to restrict Huawei without giving us the opportunity to defend ourselves.”

The suit, filed in the Eastern District of Texas, the district court where Huawei’s Plano, Texas, US headquarters is based, accused the government of passing an unconstitutional “bill of attainder”, a term for when an individual or corporation finds somebody guilty of a crime via legislation. The lawsuit seeks an injunction on the law until a ruling can be reached. In addition to the harm done to Huawei’s business (though the suit acknowledges that only a tiny fraction of Huawei’s revenue is generated in the US), Huawei accused the US of causing unnecessary reputational damage.

Authorities in Beijing said the lawsuit was “totally reasonable,” according to the Global Times, a newspaper with ties to the Chinese government.

It’s “totally reasonable” for companies to protect their legitimate rights and interests through legal means, Global Times cites China Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang as saying at briefing Thursday.

However, fortunately for lawmakers hoping to put Huawei at a disadvantage in the global competition to dominate int he 5G space,  Bloomberg reported on Thursday that Huawei’s lawsuit probably won’t succeed in getting the law thrown out.

“I don’t see the U.S. backing away from these cases,” said Peter Henning, a former federal prosecutor who is now a professor at Wayne State University Law School in Detroit.

Offering a point of comparison, experts cited a similar “bill of attainder” lawsuit brought by Russian software firm Kaspersky Labs last year after the federal government banned Huawei software from being used in government offices. The court found that the order wasn’t sufficiently punitive against Kaspersky.

However, it’s possible that Huawei isn’t seeking a legal victory so much as a win in the court of public opinion. As WSJaffirmed, the US’s campaign to encourage its allies to exclude Huawei equipment from their domestic 5G networks has caused significant reputational damage. The two DOJ indictments against the firm, as well as the arrest of its CFO in Canada, certainly haven’t helped.

But by suing the US government, Huawei could be trying to publicize information that might help undo some of this damage.

END

China is now growing quite uneasy about the trade talks according to the NewYork Times
(courtesy zerohedge)

China Growing Uneasy About Trade Talks: NYT

When Beijing wants to send a message to its people, it has a number of state-controlled media outlets to choose from. If it wants that message to penetrate in the West, it can always leak it to a semi-connected English-language outlet like the South China Morning Post, which could add a dash of credibility.

But when it’s hoping to send a shot across President Trump’s bow, there’s no better venue than an anonymous leak to a “credible” US news organization like, say, the New York Times.

On Thursday, the Chinese appeared to choose option No. 3. After days of vague-yet-sunny trade headlines sourced to Chinese and US officials, the New York Times on Thursday published a story that the market had apparently already anticipated: After more than three months of talks, Chinese officials are beginning to get cold feet.

NYT

While the broad-strokes agreement sketched out last month largely spares China from uncomfortable structural changes to its economy, Chinese officials are reportedly worried that President Trump’s propensity for last-minute changes, as well as US demands that China is unwilling to meet – like demands on enforcement and a schedule for US tariff removal – might make a final deal untenable. And without a clear understanding of the final agreement, Beijing will likely remain wary of sending its president all the way to Florida just for a piece of chocolate cake.

The two sides in recent weeks agreed to the broad outlines of an agreement that would roll back tariffs in both countries, with China buying more American goods and opening up some markets to foreign goods. The trade deal looks like a good one for Beijing, since it largely spares the government from making substantive changes to its economy.

But some of the biggest details — like the enforcement mechanism to ensure China complies and the timing for the removal of tariffs — still haven’t been hammered out. Beijing officials are wary that the final terms may be less favorable, especially given Mr. Trump’s propensity for last-minute changes, according to two people familiar with China’s position.

“The work team is still continuing to negotiate because we still have a lot to do,” said Commerce Minister Zhong Shan, speaking on the sidelines of the 11-day annual session of the National People’s Congress, which began on Tuesday. At the legislative meeting, senior Chinese officials have been taking turns warning that challenges remain.

If Xi is going to travel to Mar-a-Lago, a deal needs to be effectively finished.

“If they’re going to send their president all the way to Florida, they have to know there’s an agreement in the end,” said James Green, who until last August was the top trade official at the United States Embassy in Beijing and is now a fellow at Georgetown University.

The Chinese have good reason to be concerned. After all, they’ve been burned before.

Over the past two years, Chinese negotiators have also repeatedly believed they had a deal, only for it to come apart at the last minute. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in the summer of 2017 presented a plan, which Mr. Trump quickly disavowed. They thought they had an understanding with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin last year, focused on cars and financial services, and then President Trump imposed tariffs.

It’s a difficult position for the Chinese, who want to avoid an embarrassment. Mr. Trump is unpredictable, and China can’t be assured he won’t change his mind when the two presidents meet face to face.

But before investors panic and send stocks even lower, it’s possible that China and the US may be able to work out a compromise: Another round of senior level talks in Beijing later this month, after the National People’s Congress has wrapped up. Still, the the issue of enforcement is fast emerging as the main obstacle to a final deal, and it’s unclear whether a compromise would be attainable. Beijing is pushing the US to rapidly roll back the punitive tariffs it imposed last year, but the issue of how tariffs are rolled back is still in play.

Precisely how tariffs would be rolled back is still in play, too. If its conditions are met, the American negotiating team has signaled that it would lift 10 percent tariffs on roughly $200 billion of Chinese goods that Mr. Trump imposed last autumn, people familiar with the discussions say. But the fate of 25 percent tariffs imposed last summer on another $50 billion of goods is less clear.

Chines officials are leery of continued talks, since they don’t have to give up much under the current, albeit tenuous, agreement. And they do not want to commit China to structural changes in its economy, according to three people familiar with the negotiations.

The emerging deal would allow China to sign long-term contracts for the purchase of oil, gas, soybeans and other natural resources that its economy needs and cannot easily produce at home. It doesn’t require Beijing to buy large volumes of American manufactured goods, which could threaten jobs in China’s vast but slowing manufacturing sector.

Ultimately, Chinese officials are wary of further talks because the deal that’s currently taking shape is – as US media reports have suggested – favorable to Beijing. But if the administration’s China hawk faction manages to persuade the president, that could all change.

4.EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

ECB

Draghi surprisingly very dovish as he guides rates.  The big news is that he is re introducing his key QE vehicle the LTRO or TLTRO.  This will no doubt save Italy for the time being..this is great for gold.

(courtesy zerohedge)-

 

 

ECB Surprises Dovishly: Announces New TLTRO, Changes Rate Guidance

As we noted earlier, the bar was high for the ECB to surprise dovishly, yet it did just that moments ago when it announced (amid unchanged rates) that not only is it announcing a new series of TLTRO “starting in September 2019 and ending in March 2021, each with a maturity of two years”, but also changed its rate guidance, extending its rate guidance beyond “at least the summer of 2019” and now sees rates on hold “at least through the end of 2019.

The full statement below:

At today’s meeting the Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB) took the following monetary policy decisions:

(1) The interest rate on the main refinancing operations and the interest rates on the marginal lending facility and the deposit facility will remain unchanged at 0.00%, 0.25% and -0.40% respectively. The Governing Council now expects the key ECB interest rates to remain at their present levels at least through the end of 2019, and in any case for as long as necessary to ensure the continued sustained convergence of inflation to levels that are below, but close to, 2% over the medium term.

(2) The Governing Council intends to continue reinvesting, in full, the principal payments from maturing securities purchased under the asset purchase programme for an extended period of time past the date when it starts raising the key ECB interest rates, and in any case for as long as necessary to maintain favourable liquidity conditions and an ample degree of monetary accommodation.

(3) A new series of quarterly targeted longer-term refinancing operations (TLTRO-III) will be launched, starting in September 2019 and ending in March 2021, each with a maturity of two years. These new operations will help to preserve favourable bank lending conditions and the smooth transmission of monetary policy. Under TLTRO-III, counterparties will be entitled to borrow up to 30% of the stock of eligible loans as at 28 February 2019 at a rate indexed to the interest rate on the main refinancing operations over the life of each operation. Like the outstanding TLTRO programme, TLTRO-III will feature built-in incentives for credit conditions to remain favourable. Further details on the precise terms of TLTRO-III will be communicated in due course.

(4) The Eurosystem’s lending operations will continue to be conducted as fixed rate tender procedures with full allotment for as long as necessary, and at least until the end of the reserve maintenance period starting in March 2021.

Here is a redline comparison from the last ECB announcement:

View image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Anthony Barton@ABartonMacro

How the ECB statement changed

And now we await Mario Draghi how the announcement of the TLTRO is not indicative of a “serious economic shock” as it was framed back in November, and that Europe is not in fact sliding into a new recession.

The market responded immediately by sending the EURUSD sharply lower in kneejerk reaction, although much of the losses have been recouped, even as money markets pushed out the first ECB rate hike to September 2020.

end
Mario explains that he never saw this coming..sure!!!
(courtesy zerohedge)

Mario Draghi Explain How He Never Saw An EU Economic Collapse Coming (Again)

A few short months ago – just like Jay Powell at The Fed – everything was awesome: economy was about to reach escape velocity, inflation was picking up, QE was to be phased out and normalization could begin.

And then – the best and the brightest that Europe’s economic schools had to offer were horrified to see that their forecasts were completely wrong and the EU economy (core and periphery) began to collapse as fears of a less-than-100%-dovish-ECb would expose the zombified European banking and economic system.

…but, have no fear, Draghi is on it this time, keep rates lower for longer (crushing bank profitability even more), extend more credit to banks who are already seeing borrowing demand collapse (and encumbering more of their assets), and promise that the economy and inflation will pick up any quarter now…

Watch Live: see zerohedge)

end

Draghi admits a substantial downward revision to EU growth and inflation outlook.  Europe is in trouble

(courtesy zerohedge)

Euro, Bund Yields Tumble As Draghi Admits “Substantial” Downward Revision To EU Growth, Inflation Outlook

Echoing the OECD’s warnings, ECB Chief Mario Draghi just admitted that its forecasts were way off and revised 2019 growth expectations “substantially” lower (from 1.7% to +1.1%) and slashed all inflation forecasts.

Headlines so far include:

  • *DRAGHI: INCOMING DATA REMAINS WEAK, PARTICULARLY MANUFACTURING
  • *DRAGHI SAYS RISKS TO ECONOMIC OUTLOOK STILL TILTED TO DOWNSIDE
  • *DRAGHI SAYS 2019 GDP FORECAST REVISION IS ‘SUBSTANTIAL’

Growth:

  • *ECB SEES 2019 GDP GROWTH AT 1.1 VS. 1.7%
  • *ECB SEES 2020 GDP GROWTH AT 1.6 VS. 1.7%
  • *ECB SEES 2021 GDP GROWTH AT 1.5 VS. 1.5%

Inflation:

  • *ECB SEES 2019 INFLATION AT 1.2 VS. 1.6%
  • *ECB SEES 2020 INFLATION AT 1.5 VS. 1.7%
  • *ECB SEES 2021 INFLATION AT 1.6 VS. 1.8%

Not pretty…

And Draghi’s key dovish responses:

” While there are signs that some of the idiosyncratic domestic factors dampening growth are starting to fade, the weakening in economic data points to a sizable moderation in the pace of the economic expansion that will extend into the current year.

The persistence of uncertainties related to geopolitical factors, the threat of protectionism and vulnerabilities in emerging markets appears to be leaving marks on economic sentiment

Underlying inflation continues to be muted. The weaker economic momentum is slowing the adjustment of inflation towards our aim.

Today’s decisions will support the further build-up of domestic price pressures and headline inflation developments over the medium term

In any event, the Governing Council stands ready to adjust all of its instruments, as appropriate, to ensure that inflation continues to move towards the Governing Council’s inflation aim in a sustained manner

Euro area expansion will continue to be supported by favourable financing conditions, further employment gains and rising wages, and the ongoing – albeit somewhat slower – expansion in global activity

The risks surrounding the euro area growth outlook are still tilted to the downside, on account of the persistence of uncertainties related to geopolitical factors, the threat of protectionism and vulnerabilities in emerging markets.”

EURUSD tumbled…

And Bund yields are testing 2019 lows…

end

And the delayed reaction: the markets tank instead of rising

(courtesy  zerohedge)

 

“This Is Bad” – European Banks Tumble As ECB Unveils Massive Easing: Here’s Why It’s Not Working

Something odd is taking place in the market today: the world’s biggest central bank – whose balance sheet is 40.5% of Europe’s GDP – unveiled massive monetary easing in the form of new carry-trade facilitating bank loans and an extended NIRP period and… stocks tumbled, a reaction which the market has rarely even seen before in the context of a central bank unveiling a surprisingly dovish move. And no stocks are hit harder than the Stoxx 600 Bank Index, which is extending its intraday losses, tumbling to sessions lows down over 2%.

Why the unexpected reaction, one which suggests central banks may now be losing control over markets having pushed on a string just one attempt to push stocks too far, a reaction which a trader at a major trading desk laid out simply as “this is bad.”

According to Berenberg analyst Philipp Jaeger the problem is that the details of the TLTRO revealed by Mario Draghi have disappointed the market, which was expecting even more generosity by the ECB.

Here are the key complaints:

  • Start date leaves a gap when current TLTRO funds become non-eligible for net stable funding ratio in June.
  • Lenders will only be entitled to borrow up to 30% of the stock of eligible loans as of the end of February.
  • Given worse rate conditions of the new program, “carry trades are less attractive” and solid names might be able to refinance more cheaply via covered bonds; as a result Berenberg expects utilization of the new tenders to be noticeably lower overall

Meanwhile, the broader picture is even more bank adverse due to the extension of Europe’s NIRP period, which as Deutsche Bank made very clear in the past 5 years, has crushed bank earnings:  “The interpretation of today’s measures is negative as low rates for longer hurts a lot banks’ margins and the new TLTRO doesn’t look as attractive as the previous ones,” said Nuria Alvarez, bank analyst at Renta 4.

The good news – for now at least – is that even as stocks tumble, bond yields are plunging,with the German bund yield crashing to the lowest level in 3 years and on the verge of going negative. If central banks were about to lose all control, yields would be exploding higher, i.e., the “end of days” scenario.

But specific justifications for the market slide aside, the far bigger risk is that algos, which simply correlate one event with another, no longer associate central bank easing with instant market ramps. Should that “alternative” explanation become accepted by the binary crowd, then all bets may soon be off as central banks find themselves unable to boost stocks even if they promise – or do – “whatever it takes.”

 

5.RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

 

end

6. GLOBAL ISSUES

Canada:

Vancouver home sales crashed by 33% last month as fewer and fewer can afford a home in this very pricing city

(courtesy zerohedge)

“Ghastly” Vancouver Home Sales Crash By 33%, Lowest Since 1985

Grant’s “Almost Daily”, submitted by Grant’s Interest Rate Observer

On Monday, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver reported February results that could be classified as ghastly, with residential home sales plummeting 32.8% year-over-year to 1,484 units. That’s the lowest February sales total since 1985 and 42.5% below the 10-year average.

Prices have also broken lower, with the composite index sinking by 6.1% year-over-year.  In addition, inventories have jumped, with total listings in metro Vancouver up to 11,590 homes at month end. That’s up 48.2% from February 2018.

Toronto, Canada’s largest city, has held up better, with February prices rising 1.6% year-over-year, while new listings dropped 6.2% to outpace the 2.4% decline in sales. Nevertheless, TREB president Gurcharan Bhaura asked for regulatory relief from the mortgage stress test mandated by the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions. These subject borrowers to the greater of the five-year benchmark rate or the contracted mortgage rate plus 200 basis points (Almost Daily Grant’s, May 31):

The OSFI mandated mortgage stress test has left some buyers on the sidelines who have struggled to qualify for the type of home they want to buy. The stress test should be reviewed and consideration should be given to bringing back 30 year amortizations for federally insured mortgages. There is a federal budget and election on the horizon. It will be interesting to see what policy measures are announced to help with home ownership affordability.

On the score of home affordability, there is certainly room for improvement. According to Demographia’s International Affordability Survey for 2019, Toronto ranked 294th out of 309 metropolitan housing markets, with a median house price of 8.3 times median annual gross pre-tax household income, up from 7.9 times year-over-year.  For context, the United States national median multiple registers at 3.5 times, while the organization designates anything beyond 5.1 times to be “severely unaffordable.” Vancouver puts Toronto in the shade, ranked second to last by Demographia (only Hong Kong is more expensive) with a median multiple of 12.6 times.

As Canada’s long-running housing bull market teeters, economic data continue to disappoint.  Friday’s release of fourth quarter GDP showed annualized growth of just 0.4%, well below the 2% third quarter reading and the 1% consensus expectation, while December retail sales fell by 0.5% ex-automobiles, also worse than the expected 0.3% decline. M2 money supply growth registered 4.99% in December, down from 5.83% year-over-year and 8.65% in the final month of 2016.

Perhaps most importantly, total residential mortgage growth fell to just 3.1% year-over-year in December, the worst monthly reading since May 2001. That last data point may be especially concerning for Canada’s banks: Craig Fehr, investment strategist at Edward Jones & Co., told Bloomberg that the mortgages are, “in many cases, the largest and most profitable and steady of the businesses that these banks operate.” Fehr concludes: “The bread and butter of profitability for Canadian banks – is going to have a little less butter on the bread.”

Early indications bear that out, as a trio (the Bank of Nova Scotia, Toronto-Dominion Bank and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, or CIBC) of Canada’s five largest banks reported earnings shortfalls in the quarter ended Jan. 31. Increased credit losses figured in two of those reports, with Toronto-Dominion raising its loan loss provision to C$850 million ($645 million), up 23% year-over-year.  CIBC’s provision for credit losses jumped to C$338 million, more than double last year’s C$153 million and well above the expected C$258.5 million.

CIBC CFO Kevin Glass told Bloomberg that “three big” non-performing loans across different sectors hurt the bank’s credit portfolio, while asserting that the jump “is certainly not representative of any sign of underlying problem.”

Glass may not be worried, but an extended housing downturn may cause CIBC particular discomfort.  For more, see the Feb. 9, 2018 edition of Grant’s.

In other news from formerly-booming housing markets, yesterday The Australian reported that Queensland-based bank Suncorp Group Ltd. warned that some investors in an A$120 million ($85 million) residential mortgage bond may not be repaid. The problem: An increase in borrowers at least 60 days past due on their mortgages to above 3% of the loan pool has triggered a clause prioritizing senior claims holders, potentially diverting principal repayment from those farther down the creditor food chain.

Meanwhile, Australian new auto sales fell by 9.3% year-over-year in February, the eleventh straight decline. On Feb. 21, Fitch Ratings reported that Australian prime auto loan asset-backed securities in arrears rose to a record high in the fourth quarter, with loans past due more than 30 and 60 days rising to 2.05% and 1.03%, respectively.  That compares to a five year net loss rate of 0.51%.

7  OIL ISSUES

this should cripple PDVSA and venezuela

(courtesy Irina Slav//OilPrice.com//)

special thanks to Robert H for sending this to us

PDVSA Declares Emergency On Tanker Fleet

Tanker PDVSA

Venezuela’s struggling oil company PDVSA declared a maritime emergency after a German company operating a portion of its tanker fleet said it planned to return ten vessels because of unpaid fees, Reuters reports, citing a PDVSA document and anonymous sources.

The news is the latest in a string of bad tidings for PDVSA, which has found itself juggling falling crude oil production due to mismanagement and U.S. sanctions, and an outflow of qualified personnel, including in the tanker department.

According to Reuters, the company needs as many as 160 people, including tanker captains, machinists, and operators, to bring back the ships that Germany Bernhard Schulte Ship Management (BSM) is returning because of unpaid fees. However, PDVSA does not have these crews.

The pile of unpaid PDVSA bills is getting higher: last month, the German company said it would abandon two of the Venezuelan company’s vessels in Portugal because of unpaid bills to a number of third-party companies.

Another tanker operated by BSM on behalf of PDVSA was seized by a group of shipping firms in Curacao, again because they were owed money by the Venezuelan company and were not getting any.

In total, Reuters reports, there are more than a dozen tankers loaded with Venezuelan crude around the world that are being held in arrest because of unpaid bills.

The struggle for PDVSA has been tough, but the latest round of U.S. sanctions made it even tougher as they specifically targeted the state oil company, effectively cutting its access to U.S. refiners, with Washington urging other buyers of Venezuelan oil to steer clear of it.

The pressure is aimed at removing President Nicolas Maduro from office and replacing him with opposition leader Juan Guaido who declared himself interim president and called for new elections in January. For now, however, the Maduro government is holding on to power as several million Venezuelans have left the country amid hyperinflation and shortages of basic goods.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:

8. EMERGING MARKETS

 

Venezuela

Venezuela expels the German ambassador over hs support for Guaido

(courtesy zerohedge)

Venezuela Expels German Ambassador Over Support For Guaido

Socialist leader Nicolas Maduro has already backed down from demands that US diplomats leave Venezuela (backing off after the US threatened a military intervention to protect their diplomatic corps.), but it looks like he will have better luck with Germany.

Germany

To wit, on Tuesday, the Venezuelan strongman declared German ambassador to Venezuela Daniel Martin Kriener persona non grata and gave him 48 hours to leave the country, according to Reuters. The expulsion order was confirmed by the German government, which said it would obey the order and recall Kriener.

“Venezuela considers it unacceptable that a foreign diplomat carries out in its territory a public role closer to that of a political leader aligned with the conspiratorial agenda of extremist sectors of the Venezuelan opposition,” the government said in a statement.

A German foreign ministry spokeswoman confirmed Venezuela had expelled the ambassador and that the ministry was consulting with its allies on how to respond.

Kriener was expelled after he joined a group of other diplomats at the Caracas airport to welcome opposition leader Juan Guaido, who is recognized by Germany and roughly 50 other countries as the legitimate democratically-elected ruler of Venezuela. Guaido risked arrest to return to Venezuela last week.

Most Western countries, including Germany, recognize Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate head of state and back his plan to install a transition government ahead of free elections. Guaido denounces Maduro as an usurper whose re-election last year resulted from a sham vote. Maduro says he is victim of a coup.

Kriener, along with ambassadors and diplomats from other European embassies, had gone to the airport on Monday to support Guaido, who had risked arrest on his return to Venezuela for flouting a court-imposed travel ban to visit other Latin American countries.

On Monday, the embassy said on its Twitter account that Kriener hoped Guaido’s return “was a step towards a peaceful and political process to overcome the Venezuelan crisis.”

The German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas blasted Maduro for the “incomprehensible decision” and said he had decided to recall Kriener to avoid any conflict.

GermanForeignOffice

@GermanyDiplo

FM @HeikoMaas on Ambassador Kriener being declared persona non grata in 🇻🇪: Incomprehensible decision which will further escalate the situation. I have decided to call our Ambassador back to Berlin for consultations.

end

Argentina
The Argentine Peso plummets to a record low of 42.5 pesos per dollar.  In 2001 it was 1:1 and in 2003:  3:1
as inflation rips through this nation
(courtesy zerohedge)

Argentine Peso Plummets To Record Low As Inflation Soars

With inflation soaring (and forecast to accelerate further), the Argentine Peso has plummeted the last few days even as the central bank raised 7-day Leliq rate to 51.862%, according to two people with direct knowledge.

The weakness accelerated into the close…

 

Taking the peso down top a new record low…

Peso has dropped 11% this year, making it the worst performer against USD.

As Bloomberg notes, Argentina’s famous grass-fed beef likely emerged as a top inflation driver in February, analysts at JPMorgan wrote in a note on Wednesday. The bank raised its consumer price forecast for that month to 3.9 percent from 3.2 percent.

“The main culprit,” JPMorgan analysts Lucila Barbeito and Diego Pereira wrote “is red meat, with prices that surprised to the upside in the past month.”

Specifically, economists polled by Argentina’s central bank increased their end-2019 inflation expectations to 31.9% from 29%, according to the institution’s February survey.

Paging Christine Lagarde!!!

end

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

Euro/USA 1.1309 DOWN .0038 REACTING TO MERKEL’S FAILED COALITION/ REACTING TO +GERMAN ELECTION WHERE ALT RIGHT PARTY ENTERS THE BUNDESTAG/ huge Deutsche bank problems + USA election:///ITALIAN CHAOS /AND NOW ECB TAPERING BOND PURCHASES/JAPAN TAPERING BOND PURCHASES /USA RISING INTEREST RATES /FLOODING/EUROPE BOURSES RED 

 

 

 

 

 

 

USA/JAPAN YEN 111.72  UP .091 (Abe’s new negative interest rate (NIRP), a total DISASTER/NOW TARGETS INTEREST RATE AT .11% AS IT WILL BUY UNLIMITED BONDS TO GETS TO THAT LEVEL…

GBP/USA 1.3138    DOWN   0.0042  (Brexit March 29/ 2017/ARTICLE 50 SIGNED/BREXIT FEES WILL BE CAPPED

USA/CAN 1.3422 DOWN .0022 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 MONDAY morning in Europe, the Euro FELL by 38 basis points, trading now ABOVE the important 1.08 level FALLING to 1.1309 Last night Shanghai composite closed UP 4.32 POINTS OR 0.14%/

 

 

 

//Hang Sang CLOSED UP 76.00   POINTS OR 0.26% 

 

/AUSTRALIA CLOSED UP 0.28%/EUROPEAN BOURSES RED 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The NIKKEI: this TUESDAY morning CLOSED DOWN 140.80 POINTS OR 0.65% 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trading from Europe and Asia

1/EUROPE OPENED RED 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / :Hang Sang CLOSED DOWN 258.15 POINTS OR 0.89%

 

 

 

/SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 4.32 POINTS OR 0.14% 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australia BOURSE CLOSED UP 0.34%

 

Nikkei (Japan) CLOSED DOWN 140.80 POINTS OR 0.65%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

INDIA’S SENSEX  IN THE GREEN

Gold very early morning trading: 1285.90

silver:$15.08

Early THURSDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield: 2.68% !!! DOWN 0 IN POINTS from WEDNESDAY’S night in basis points and it is trading WELL ABOVE resistance at 2.27-2.32%. (POLICY FED ERROR)/

 

The 30 yr bond yield 3.06 DOWN 0  IN BASIS POINTS from WEDNESDAY night. (POLICY FED ERROR)/

USA dollar index early THURSDAY morning: 96.90 UP 3 CENT(S) from  WEDNESDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers THURSDAY MORNING

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

And now your closing  THURSDAY NUMBERS \12: 00 PM

 

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 1.34% DOWN 9  in basis point(s) yield from WEDNESDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: -.01%  DOWN 1   BASIS POINTS from WEDNESDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/

 

 

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.04% DOWN 8   IN basis point yield from WEDNESDAY

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: 2.64 UP 3    POINTS in basis point yield from WEDNESDAY/

 

 

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 160 points HIGHER than Spain.

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: FALLS  TO +.07%   IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY//

THE IMPORTANT SPREAD BETWEEN ITALIAN 10 YR BOND AND GERMAN 10 YEAR BOND IS 2.57% AND NOW ABOVE THE  THE 3.00% LEVEL WHICH WILL IMPLODE THE ENTIRE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM. AT 4% SPREAD THERE WILL BE A MASSIVE BANK RUN…

 

END

IMPORTANT CURRENCY CLOSES FOR THURSDAY

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

Euro/USA 1.1214 DOWN   .0099 or 99 basis points

 

 

USA/Japan: 111.62 down .020 OR YEN UP 2 basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.3096 DOWN.0083( POUND DOWN 83  BASIS POINTS)

Canadian dollar UP 20 basis points to 1.3423

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

The USA/Yuan,CNY closed AT 6.7149    0N SHORE  (DOWN)

 

THE USA/YUAN OFFSHORE:  6.7283(  YUAN DOWN)

TURKISH LIRA:  5.4493

the 10 yr Japanese bond yield closed at -.01%

 

 

 

Your closing 10 yr USA bond yield DOWN 4 IN basis points from WEDNESDAY at 2.65 % //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic USA 30 yr bond yield: 3.04 DOWN 3  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, 97.43 UP 56 CENT(S) ON THE DAY/1.00 PM/

 

Your closing bourses for Europe and the Dow along with the USA dollar index closing and interest rates for THURSDAY: 12:00 PM 

London: CLOSED DOWN  38.45 OR 0.53%

German Dax : DOWN 69.83 POINTS OR .60%

Paris Cac CLOSED DOWN 20.89 POINTS OR  0.39%

Spain IBEX CLOSED DOWN 46.80 POINTS OR  0.50%

Italian MIB: CLOSED DOWN 154.85 POINTS OR 0.74%

 

 

 

 

WTI Oil price; 56.65 1:00 pm;

Brent Oil: 66.26 12:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN /   ROUBLE CROSS:    66.21  THE CROSS HIGHER BY 0.29 ROUBLES/DOLLAR (ROUBLE LOWER BY 29 BASIS PTS)

 

TODAY THE GERMAN YIELD FALLS  TO +.07 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, 4:00 pm/and 10 year USA interest rate:

WTI CRUDE OIL PRICE 4:30 PM :  56.54

 

 

BRENT :  66.50

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: … 2.64.

 

 

 

 

 

 

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 3.04..

 

 

 

EURO/USA DOLLAR CROSS:  1.11181 ( DOWN 132   BASIS POINTS)

USA/JAPANESE YEN:111.66 up .033 (YEN DOWN 3  BASIS POINTS/..

 

.

 

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 97.69 UP  81 cent(s)/

The British pound at 4 pm: Great Britain Pound/USA:1.3071  DOWN 109 POINTS FROM YESTERDAY

the Turkish lira close: 5.4493

the Russian rouble 66.24   DOWN .33 Roubles against the uSA dollar.( DOWN 33 BASIS POINTS)

 

Canadian dollar:  1.3459 DOWN 16 BASIS pts

USA/CHINESE YUAN (CNY) :  6.7149  (ONSHORE)/

 

USA/CHINESE YUAN(CNH): 6.7345  (OFFSHORE)

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: ,0.07%

 

The Dow closed DOWN 200.23 POINTS OR 0.78%

 

NASDAQ closed DOWN 84.45POINTS OR 1.13%

 


VOLATILITY INDEX:  16.88 CLOSED UP 1.14 

 

LIBOR 3 MONTH DURATION: 2.594%//

 

 

 

FROM 2.606

 

 

 

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

TRADING IN GRAPH FORM FOR THE DAY/WEEKLY SUMMARY/FOLLOWED BY TODAY

Dollar Jumps, Stocks & Bond Yields Dump As Not-Dovish-Enough Draghi Disappoints

Can you remember the last time the stock market dropped on the day a central bank went full dovetard?

k

 

China is unstoppable – an early dip was bid, but some v

China is unstoppable – an early dip was bid, but some very last minute weakness was evident leaving all but SHCOMP red on the day…

European markets were a big focus today as Draghi reversed back into full dove mode…but as is clear the kneejerk gains were quickly dismissed as EU banks tumbled…

Germany’s yield curve flattened notably (as 10Y yields tumbled to its flattest since Oct 2016)…

And the Euro tumbled, eventually running stops thru 1.12…

…to its lowest since June 2017…

 

US markets were not mixed at all – they were down… again… with Small Caps the big laggards…

 

The S&P 500 broke below, bounced, then retested its 200DMA…

 

Dow Transports are now down 10 days in a row – that is the equal longest losing streak since 1972

 

Notably, breadth is starting to roll over, with the number of overbought stocks tumbling…

 

Kroger was krushed after big misses and slashing its outlook (and not helped by AMZN)…

 

The big banks had another ugly session…

 

Credit markets continued the week’s carnage (to one-month wides) and VIX also bounced up towards 18 (one-month highs)…

 

Treasury yields tumbled once again today – erasing most of last week’s weakness – with the belly of the curve down over 6bps

 

5Y Yields plunged to their lowest in a month after tagging the pre-FOMC levels…

 

ECB and Fed rate expectations remain notably negative for 2019, both legging down today after Draghi signaled lower for longer…

 

The Euro weakness sparked a confirmed break above 97.00 for the DXY…

Today was the biggest jump in the DXY since Aug 2018…

To the highest since June 2017…

Emerging Market FX was hammered once again today… (biggest two-day drop since Nov 2018)

 

The Argentine Peso plunged to a new record low…

Yuan also tumbled…

 

And before we leave FX land – HKD touched the lower band of its peg…

 

Litecoin extended the week’s gains in cryptos…

 

WTI managed gains – thanks to a European session rally – as PMs and copper slipped lower as the dollar surged…

 

WTI continues to trade in a range…

Notably, amid all the turmoil in currencies – Yuan in gold terms (or vice versa) was extremely stable…

 

Finally, it can’t be this easy, right?

END

MARKET TRADING

 

US Stocks Spike, European Banks Slump As Draghi Flip-Flops

Bunds are bid, the euro is modestly lower, European banks have pumped-and-dumped, but US equity futures love Draghi’s newfound dovishness…EURUSD is down around 30 pips only…Bund yields tumbled but bounced back to almost unch from before Draghi…

 

European bank stocks are back in the red, erasing most of the initial spike…

 

But US equity algos love it…

 

end

Dow Dumps As Draghi-Driven Dead-Cat-Bounce Dies

When was the last time stocks tumbled after a central bank unleashed dramatic easing?

Dow futures are down 250 points from its post-Draghi highs…

Treasury yields are also tumbling…

 

ii)Market data/

iii)USA ECONOMIC/GENERAL STORIES

My goodness: thousands of Medical professionals are losing their licenses because of failure to pay off their student debt

(courtesy zerohedge)

Thousands Of Medical Professionals Are Losing Their Licenses For Not Paying Their Student Debt

Some 1,000 healthcare workers have lost their licenses to practice in Florida due to their inability to pay off their student debt, a new report claims.The “crackdown”, as described, could potentially put hundreds of people out of work, and comes as a result of student loan companies lobbying states to enact laws that punish those who default on their loans by taking away their professional licenses. However, so far Florida is the only state actually enforcing the law.

Adam Walser, an investigative reporter for ABC, found that the state Board of Health had suspended more than 900 healthcare licenses, including those belonging to registered nurses, nurses assistants and pharmacists, over the last two years. There are additionally 12 other states that still have the power to take away healthcare licenses for unpaid student loans. However, officials in those states said that they haven’t suspended any licenses over the last two years.

States like Montana, Oklahoma, North Dakota and New Jersey have already repealed laws that have allowed for license suspensions over unpaid student loans.

Attorney Christie Arkovich, based out of Tampa, says that the laws go too far. “We’re not saying that people shouldn’t repay their loan. We’re just saying that getting them fired probably isn’t the best way to go about that,” she commented, although she did not provide a suitable enforcement alternative.

Following suit, Dr. Gabriel Picone, an economics professor at University of South Florida, said that suspending licenses for nonpayment of student loans puts a strain on both employers and patients“it’s trying to take too much away. This person may end up on Medicaid, receive food stamps. All this is more money that we will have to pay.”

The state has the ability to garnish up to 100% of wages before a license can be reinstated, according to the report. And for those that have had their license suspended? The only way to reinstate it is by paying the state’s investigative costs and an additional 10% penalty on the balance owed.

Of course, the poetic irony is that this is the government “solution” that was created by the government, or rather the Fed, in the first place.

END

trump gives carmakers an ultimatum on emissions

(courtesy zerohedge)

 

Trump Gives Carmakers An Ultimatum: It’s My Way Or The I-5 Freeway

The White House has sent a message to automakers on emissions: side with us, or face Donald Trump’s wrath by siding with California, i.e. “it’s my way or Interstate 5″. That was the message delivered during a “tense” conference call between the Trump administration and executives in the auto industry, according to Bloomberg, which also included senior officials from the EPA and the NHTSA.

The call, which took place in late February, came after Trump’s administration had repeatedly terminated talks between federal regulators and California officials in an attempt to maintain a common emission standard across the industry. Executives in the industry have been urging the two sides to reach an agreement to avoid a legal battle with California, which is in the unique position of being able to establish its own standards.

The call to automakers came after the White House admitted that months of talks with the California Air Resources Board had failed. The White House said in late February: “Despite the administration’s best efforts to reach a common-sense solution, it is time to acknowledge that CARB has failed to put forward a productive alternative.”

CARB spokesman Stanley Young disputed this, saying the administration had broken off talks “and never responded to our suggested areas of compromise – or offered any compromise proposal at all.”

In August, the Trump administration had recommended capping tailpipe carbon emissions standards and fuel economy requirements at 37 mpg after 2020, instead of the 47 mpg mandated under rules put in place by the Obama administration. The proposal also called for revoking California’s authority to set its own greenhouse standards for vehicles.

Meanwhile US automakers, caught in the middle, have been urging compromise, and a solution that will avoid a messy legal battle and negative effects on operations across the industry.

Industry officials on the call were told that automakers should publicly state their support for the Trump administration’s direction or back California’s tougher standards. This has put automakers in a worrisome position of getting caught between the wrath of the President and the nation’s largest auto market.

“A coordinated program with every stakeholder is in the best interest of Ford’s customers, and is the best path forward to achieve reductions in carbon dioxide emissions and support critical investments in new technologies,” Ford spokeswoman Rachel McCleery said.

Additionally, the President was said to be reviewing the findings of a Commerce Department report on whether imported cars posed a national security risk. Automakers worry that these findings could result in further tariffs – and a further decline in demand – for the industry.

end

this may turn out to be extremely problematic for our foreign banks operating here: new Fed plans to tighten liquidity rules and this would limit their reliance at the discount window once a crisis begins

(courtesy zerohedge)

 

Fed Plans Tighter Liquidity Rules For Foreign Banks To Limit Reliance On Discount Window During Crisis

Back in July 2017, when we observed that a shocking 40% of the Fed’s interest on excess reserves had been paid, inexplicably, to foreign banks and implicitly represent a subsidy to foreign banks to the tune of tens of billions each year, we said that “we wonder if this is the main reason why the Fed is so desperate to trim its balance sheet as it hikes rates, as sooner or later, someone in Congress will figure this out.”

As a tangent we said that “considering that cash at US banks, most of which is parked at the Fed as reserves, amounts to just under $1.5 trillion, we wonder why the Fed does not simply cut off foreign banks’ eligibility for its generous IOER subsidy, and make its balance sheet eligible only to US banks. It would slash its bloated balance sheet by over $800 billion overnight. Oh yes, that may actually test the widely accepted theory that banks outside the US are “safe.”

Almost two years later, while the Fed has yet to move on curbing foreign bank subsidies courtesy of IOER, the US central bank is finally considering stricter rules on foreign bank branches to tighten what critics say is a loophole that has allowed overseas lenders to shield assets from the toughest U.S. bank rules, while collecting billions in annual hand outs courtesy of reserves parked with the Fed.

The proposed changes would be a blow for such banks as Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse and UBS and which have for years held billions of dollars in assets, such as corporate loans, at their New York branches. Additionally, as Reuters notes the rule changes, which have yet to be passed, could also inflame tensions with European regulators who have long-complained that their lenders are held to higher standards in the United States than domestic rivals.

The Fed proposal would seek to impose tougher liquidity requirements on foreign bank branches, which could involve holding higher-quality liquid assets to ensure the branch could meet its short-term obligations, almost as if the Fed is proactively concerned what would happen to foreign bank deposits in case there were a bank run in either the lender’s host country, or the US. Indicatively, foreign branches held more than $1.6 trillion in assets as of June last year.

The specific treatment of foreign branches, which typically focus on corporate business and are just one part of a foreign bank’s overall U.S. operations, has long been a dilemma for the Fed.

The paradox is that legally foreign branches are part of the overseas parent which would be on the hook to shore-up the branch if it were to fail. But, because foreign bank branches do large amounts of dollar-denominated business, they can also access the Fed’s discount lending window which they used heavily during the 2008 financial crisis.

After the crisis, the Fed tightened rules on foreign banks, requiring them to put their non-branch assets into a new holding company which would be subject to the same heightened post-crisis rules as domestic U.S. banks, including tough stress tests, leverage and capital standards. Following the transition, many banks were allowed to continue using branches, subject to some additional but less onerous requirements, fearing a crackdown would lead overseas regulators to retaliate against U.S. bank branches in their markets.

This critics claim, allows foreign banks to continue using their branches to shield assets from the tougher holding company rules, and point to the fact a larger percentage of overall foreign bank assets are being held in branches.

The Fed data shows that of foreign banks with combined assets of more than $50 billion, around 40% of all their U.S. assets were held in branches as of June. That is compared to around 37 percent in Dec. 2014 when the new regulatory regime was finalized.

While the Fed can decree how much cash should be held at a branch versus the holdco, what is more important is that the proposed additional liquidity requirements would aim to reduce the reliance foreign branches would have on the Fed’s discount window during a future crisis, even as current costs for those firms would increase… which is only fair considering the tens of billions in US taxpayer subsidies that foreign banks have received courtesy of the interest the Fed pays on excess reserves.

As one would expect, foreign banks and regulators claim that additional requirements are unnecessary, since foreign branches are limited in their activities, rarely hold federally insured deposits, and are subject to their home country rules.

And now, we wait for AOC, Elizabeth Warren and an entire generation of wealth redistributing democrats to realize that whereas the Fed has paid hundreds of billions in “interest” to banks merely for the “privilege” of creating reserves out of thin air and handing them out to the banks, approximately half of this amount has been paid to foreign banks most of which are one rumor of a bank run away from insolvency anyway.

END
This North Dakota company has offered to build the 234 miles of Trump border wall for 1.4 billion dollars and not 8$ billion
(courtesy zerohedge)

Forget $8 Billion: Company Will Build 234 Miles Of Trump’s Border Wall For $1.4B

A North Dakota company is offering to build 234 miles of President Trump’s border wall for a fraction of the $8 billion President Trump wants for the same stretch.

Telling the Washington Examiner that President Trump is overpaying, Fisher Sand and Gravel Company CEO Tommy Fisher says his company can do the job for just $1.4 billion, or $4.31 billion if the US government wants to incorporate paved roads and border technology – plus a warranty!

“Our whole point is to break through the government bureaucracy,” Fisher told the Examiner. “If they do the small procurements as they are now … that’s not going to cut it.”

Of the $8 billion Trump is hoping to spend, he already has $1.375 billion of that amount from Congress, which can only be used to build fencing in the Rio Grande Valley. Trump is seeking to repurpose another $3.1 billion in defense funding for more border wall and $3.6 billion more through his emergency declaration that Congress and the courts will challenge. –Washington Examiner

According to Fisher, the $1.4 billion would cover 20 miles of levee wall in the Rio Grande Valley, along with an additional 214 miles in the surrounding area. According to the bill Congress passed to approve said funds, the construction is restricted to the Rio Grande region, and was originally slated to cover around 55 miles of steel slat fencing.

According to a representative of the Army Corps of Engineers, the Trump administration has yet to decide how the $8 billion Trump wants to spend will be allocated.

The corps is considering how to spend money Congress gave DHS last fiscal year and has not requested bids from the private sector because it’s still in the procurement process.

Replacement and new wall projects have struggled to get underway in Trump’s first two years in office. Just 35 miles of wall have gone up in that time. The Army Corps of Engineers has procured around 75 miles but has not awarded $900 million for the project of the $1.35 billion that was in the 2018 omnibus. –Washington Examiner

Lawmakers along with DHS officials are expected to travel to the Arizona border this week to survey current work being performed on the border.

end

This is a must read as Brandon Smith explains to us what is going on with respect to USA politics etc.  If believes that Trump will not win in 2020 and the far left will gain in their new policies.  If implemented a green new deal will create civil war in the uSA

(courtesy Brandon Smith)

Civil War Would Erupt If “Green New Deal” Socialists Actually Get What They Want

Authored by Brandon Smith via Alt-Market.com,

In the months preceding the 2016 presidential election, I predicted a Trump election win but tried to temper expectations with the reality that there were multiple scenarios exploitable by globalists which could turn the conservative elation into confusion and chaos. Just after the election, I published an article titled ‘Order Out Of Chaos: The Defeat Of The Left Comes With A Cost’In that article I warned that the political Left, when confronted with failure, has displayed a habit of doubling or tripling down and becoming even more extreme in their rhetoric and policies. I also warned that this might influence the political Right to become more extreme in response.

This is the problem when attempting to explain the False Left/Right Paradigm to people who are new to the concept. Yes, at the top of the political pyramid, all the players support essentially the same policies of centralization and more power to the elites. But, at the bottom of the pyramid, there are numerous and legitimate divides among common citizens. The divides are real, not false, and it is these divides that the elites seek to exploit.

One divide that we are likely to hear much more about in the next two years is the divide between “old school” democrats and the new “green deal” socialists/communists. Another more vitriolic divide is the one between common sense conservatives and the “double down” socialist cult.

The narrative being constructed here is a fascinated but disturbing one. Consider the pattern on display:

Sovereignty activists unseat the old Republican guard and take control of the party through Trump during the 2016 election while pushing “populism” to the forefront of the mainstream. They supplant the social justice left who thought they had the world in the palm of their hand. In response, the left goes even more insane; searching for meaning in a world that obviously does not want them, they come to the realization that not only did they run the worst possible candidate in 2016 (Clinton), but their platform was not “extreme enough”. They now plan to not only take down Trump by any means necessary, but they also plan to break down their own “old guard” and rebuild the Democratic party into something openly communist (rather than closet communist).

Of course, this narrative is not reality. Trump didn’t push out the old guard neo-con Republicans. In fact, the elites run his administration today through globalist agents like Bolton, Pompeo, Ross, and Mnuchin. The Trump Administration, while perhaps rebellious in its rhetoric, has done nothing to “drain the swamp” in Washington DC. The left is rebelling against a fantasy. There was no populist takeover of the US government; there are no champions for liberty, free markets and individual sovereignty in the White House. Is was all a con game.

But who benefits from the con?  The globalists, of course, but how does the “green deal” left play into the scheme?

I suspect that the leftists will find themselves in a similar position as liberty conservatives down the road as the “green new deal” is forced into the mainstream consciousness. With “socialists” like Bernie Sanders or Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez receiving more public and media attention than ever, it is clear that there is an agenda by the establishment to generate manufactured excitement over socialist/communist policies. To be clear, the way our system operates today is ALREADY quite socialist, with big government interference in almost every aspect of business and life. However, the green new deal represents a full blown Marxist approach to government control. It is essentially soviet level communism, repackaged as environmental socialism.

The Democrats are about to have their own fake internal revolution, which the elites plan to control just as they have controlled Trump’s “takeover” of the Republican Party.

The political Left is more vulnerable than ever to this kind of transition. As noted above, they feel they lost the 2016 election because they ran an establishment candidate on policies that were not extreme enough, and some of them also still believe the debunked notion that the election was stolen by Russian hackers. But, if they do campaign in 2020 on a socialist/communist platform, it will be the same old elitist establishment that benefits. The old guard will become the new guard, just as the old guard became the “new guard” when Trump entered office.

I will try to break the situation down as clearly as I can…

Globalists patterns tend to repeat. They use the same strategies over and over again because these strategies have worked for them in the past. As I noted in my article ‘Trump Trade Wars A Perfect Smokescreen For A Market Crash’, Trump’s presidency strangely echoes that of Herbert Hoover’s. Almost every Trump policy from large corporate tax cuts to infrastructure spending programs to aggressive trade tariffs is reminiscent of Hoover’s presidency just before the onset of the Great Depression (also, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates into economic weakness during Hoover’s presidency, just as they are doing during Trump’s presidency).

Hoover was a one term president unseated by economic collapse. He was then replaced by perhaps the most openly communistic leader the US has ever had; Franklin D. Roosevelt. Roosevelt’s “New Deal” was the catalyst for most big government socialist programs for decades to come.

I do not think it is a coincidence that Trump’s presidency closely matches Hoover’s.

I do not think it is a coincidence that the Federal Reserve is tightening policy into weakness today (cutting $65 billion in assets from their balance sheet in February alone) just as they did during Hoover’s term.

I do not think it is a coincidence that the US is currently suffering a vast economic downturn in fundamental data in housing markets, auto markets, credit markets, manufacturing, and retail.

And, I do not think it is a coincidence that as we enter the third year of Trump’s first (and perhaps last) term, the extreme left suddenly proposed a highly socialist “new deal” program from left field. This pattern is rather familiar.

Some people might argue that the green new deal is a sideshow, and that the American people would never support such measures or any presidential candidates that would implement them. And I would agree IF we were to hold an election today. After all, front-muppet Cortez comes off like an angry teenager who just discovered Marx and Alinsky and decided to base her entire identity around the cliff notes of their manifestos.

But, by 2020 the story may be much different.

If the globalist scheme is as I have been predicting, and they plan to bring down the US economy into recession/depression territory under Trump’s watch, then the ensuing public fear could develop into support for measures citizens might have originally thought absurd. Trump would likely be voted out even if the Democratic candidate is a full blown socialist, or the election could be rigged by the elites in favor of the Democrat candidate.

During the recent testimony of Michael Cohen, Trump’s former lawyer suggested in a rather odd exchange with Congress that if Trump were to lose the election in 2020 that the transition “would never be peaceful…”. The leftist media has already pounced on this comment and asserted that conservatives would support Trump in a kind of violent retroactive coup should the Dems win in the next election.

Generally I find the expositions of leftists in the media so delusional it is painful. Their vision is so clouded by bias and fantasy that many of them could be mistaken for institutionalized schizophrenics. They see racists and fascists under every rock and behind every tree, and they justify their insanity by creating enemies that simply do not exist. That said, in this case, I actually agree with their assessment.

If the left runs on a new green deal platform and wins in 2020, conservatives would likely revolt violently, and even though I know that the elitist establishment would seek to ultimately benefit from a civil war in the US, and even though I know that Trump is a pied piper for the globalists, I could not admonish such a rebellion.

The green new deal would be so devastating to the US economy that it could only result in complete destabilization and eventually mass extermination. The consequences of its policies need to be examined more thoroughly not just by conservatives but people on the left that have not yet fallen off the fence into extremism. The agenda is frightening.

Government Support Of Non-Profits To Manage Local Economies: Green deal proponents pretend as if they will fight for more localized economies, but their brand of “support” is aimed at cooperation between non-profits and government. Non-profits are some of the most corrupt organizations active in the US. Also, while giving government incentives to promote localism does not sound like a bad idea, government should not be involved in economic management at all. How far will government go to ensure that local economies are given priority? What if incentives are not enough and regulation follows as it usually does? Enforcing localism is like enforcing charity. If localism is enforced, it is not localism. It must be voluntary.

100% Clean Energy By 2030: It’s interesting that this policy matches exactly with the UN’s sustainability agenda for 2030. First and foremost, there is no concrete evidence whatsoever that carbon causes global warming or “climate change”, and certainly no evidence that man-made carbon affects the environment. But, the UN’s sustainability plans hinge on the idea of carbon “pollution” and taxation, and so does the new green deal. With a stated cost of $13.4 Trillion to convert to 100% renewable energy (an extremely low estimate), the money to pay for everything has to come from somewhere.

The funds will come from the average consumer and fuel taxation; taxes high enough to make driving a gas vehicle prohibitive over time. And of course carbon taxation of what is left of US manufacturing and industry, leaving the US completely non-competitive in global trade. This portion of the green new deal would essentially sink the US into third world status.

Full Employment Program: We’ve seen the results of “full employment” policies in communist countries in the past, and they generally do not work out too well for the average person. The only way to implement such standards is through forced wealth redistribution and much lower wages. Meaning, once again, American living standards would have to be sharply decreased.

There is a longer list of green deal directives which you can read about here.  The devil is in the details, and how such measures would actually be enforced.  The level of state control and involvement in business and our lives would have to be far more extensive that it is today, and that is saying a lot.  So, how could this possibly come about without massive resistance?

The only way that a majority of average Americans would support these vast changes to our culture and our economic system is if we are already in the midst of a financial disaster and we feel as though we have nothing left to lose. The economic decay currently initiated by the Fed through their deliberate implosion of the “everything bubble” they created over the past decade indicates that this may very well be the case by 2020.  What I’m saying is, just as I predicted Trump would win in 2016, I am now predicting Trump will lose in 2020 if economic conditions continue to decline.

The establishment could develop this scenario one of two ways:

First, a Trump attempt to keep the White House, backed by conservative support and unconstitutional martial law.

Second, Trump steps down willingly to be replaced by a Democrat energized by green deal fanaticism.

The first option would depend on how many conservatives realize Trump is controlled opposition and refuse to go along with the theatrics.

In either case, a peaceful transition is not going to happen.  Millions of conservatives would not accept the institution of green deal measures.  They would revolt against them, along with the host of other predictable policies socialists would pursue, from gun control to increased taxation in every area of life.  Domestic warfare would be inevitable.  Perhaps even preferable.  The problem is, would a conservative rebellion against green deal socialists be a grass roots affair, or would it be manipulated in a top-down farce?

The ultimate solution to the problem would be for conservatives to focus their efforts not on leftists, but on the globalists that are attempting to pull strings on both sides of the political divide.  The globalists are the root of the cancer infecting our civilization, and they must by cut out.

If this is not done, then the only outcome I see in this situation would be mindless civil war. The globalists would work to control both sides through puppet leadership while we are hyperfocused only on the political left.  Which means, they could control who wins, and who loses.

*  *  *

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end

Well that did not last long: Amazon subsidiary slashes worker hours just 4 months after proceeding to the 15 dollar minimum wage level

(courtesy zerohedge)

Whole Foods Slashes Worker Hours Four Months After $15 Minimum Wage Increase: Report

Just four months after Amazon enacted a $15 minimum wage for all its employees on November 1, subsidiary Whole Foods is slashing worker hours, according to The Guardian.

Whole Foods employees told The Guardian that the hourly raises are often negated by the reduced schedule.

“My hours went from 30 to 20 a week,” said one Illinois Whole Foods employee, who spoke on condition of anonymity out of fear of retaliation. “We just have to work faster to meet the same goals in less time.

The Illinois-based worker explained that once the $15 minimum wage was enacted, part-time employee hours at their store were cut from an average of 30 to 21 hours a week, and full-time employees saw average hours reduced from 37.5 hours to 34.5 hours. The worker provided schedules from 1 November to the end of January 2019, showing hours for workers in their department significantly decreased as the department’s percentage of the entire store labor budget stayed relatively the same. –The Guardian

The shift cuts are “the direct result of guidance from our regional team,” according to an internal email shared by one employee.

A Maryland Whole Foods worker added that their regional management team has forced stores to reduce full-time employee schedules by 4 hours, to 36 hours per week. “This hours cut makes that raise pointless as people are losing more than they gained and we rely on working full shifts,” said the employee.

An Oregon employee added “At my store all full-time team members are 36 to 38 hours per week now. So what workers do if they want a full 40 hours is take a little bit of their paid time off each week to fill their hours to 40. Doing the same thing myself.”

The cuts have also resulted in staffing shortfalls, according to some employees. “Things that have made it more noticeable are the long lines, the need to call for cashier and bagging assistance, and customers not being able to find help in certain departments because not enough are scheduled, and we are a big store,” said one California Whole Foods employee.

Just about every person on our team has complained about their hours being cut. Some have had to look for other jobs as they can’t make ends meet,” they added.

“There are many team members working at Whole Foods today whose total compensation is actually less than what it was before the wage increase due to these labor reductions,” said a spokesperson from Whole Foods employee advocacy group, Whole Worker. The group formed following the Amazon acquisition with the goal of forming a union and providing workers with the means to organize. Shortly after the formation of Whole Worker, Whole Foods began training management to resist union organization with a series of training videos

In a statement to Fast Company, Whole Foods denied the workers’ claims, saying: “Our full-time store Team Members averaged the same number of hours in January and February 2019 as they did during the same time last year. We are proud to have increased the hourly wage for all store Team Members, and we will continue to schedule labor hours based on individual store needs to create the best experience for our Team Members and customers.” The company did not address the effect on part-time workers.

Also noted is that several parts of the country have passed legislation protecting workers from the type of shift slashing contained in the Guardian report.

This move could cast a shadow on broader minimum wage initiatives, becoming another data point for the argument that raising the minimum wage will actually lower worker pay. But that’s a choice on the company’s part, and one anticipated by the cities that have passed minimum wage increases. Several jurisdictions that have enacted a $15 minimum wage, including Seattle and San Francisco, have passed “fair workweek” legislation that protects hourly employees against the kind of shift slashing that’s happening at Whole Foods. And a study last year on the minimum wage in Seattle found that it has improved take-home pay for most hourly workers. –Fast Company

In February of last year, we reported that miserable Whole Foods employees reported being in constant fear of losing their jobs as the company rolled out “Order-To-Shelf” (OTS) scorecards which contianed “a strict set of procedures for purchasing, displaying, and storing products on store shelves and in back rooms. To make sure stores comply, Whole Foods relies on “scorecards” that evaluate everything from the accuracy of signage to the proper recording of theft, or “shrink.”

I wake up in the middle of the night from nightmares about maps and inventory, and when regional leadership is going to come in and see one thing wrong, and fail the team,” a supervisor at a West Coast Whole Foods told Business Insider. “The stress has created such a tense working environment. Seeing someone cry at work is becoming normal.”

News of Whole Foods slashing hours comes as grocery giant Kroger missed earnings and slashed their outlook, sending shares plummeting over 13% on Thursday. 

END

 

In this report revenue into Hertz has been falling since 2015.  They are just one recession away form bankruptcy

 

(courtesy zerohedge/BlindersOffResearch)

Hertz Is One Recession Away From Bankruptcy

Via BlindersOffResearch.com,

  • Operating income hasn’t covered interest expense since 2015 and the total debt continues to soar.
  • The competition has been pressuring revenue since 2013 and is only getting stronger.
  • 2018 used-vehicle values were as good as it’s going to get.
  • Airline passenger volume falls during recessions and 68% of Hertz’s revenue comes from airport locations.

In a recent interview with Real Vision, I identified Hertz as a good short target. Since the interview, Hertz reported Q4 and full-year earnings (or lack thereof) that were above analyst estimates causing the stock to rally. Most of the improvement that took analysts by surprise was due to the abnormally strong performance in used-vehicle values during 2018 which dropped Hertz’s used-vehicle depreciation per unit by 16% on a year-over-year basis. So is all of the pessimism surrounding Hertz overdone and should the 2018 results be the all-clear signal to buy? Let’s let’s take a closer look.

Used-Vehicle Values

Used-vehicle values play a very important role in the profitability of rental car companies. Put simply, the vehicle expense that rental car companies report is mostly based on the purchase price less the recovery value at disposition. As used-vehicle values increase, the gap between the purchase price and recovery value shrinks which translates into a smaller depreciation amount per vehicle and, under normal conditions, better margins. The opposite happens when used-vehicle values fall. As you can see in the chart below, used-vehicle values and Hertz’s operating income have a strong correlation.

The correlation between operating income and used-vehicle values remained very tight until 2013 (more on this later). As shown by the Black Book Retention Index, used vehicle values have been falling since 2014 and have undoubtedly contributed to the decline in operating income. As I mentioned in my opening statement, used-vehicle values were abnormally high in 2018, and the benefit can be observed by the improvement in operating income.

The big question now is, did 2018 mark a trend change in used-vehicle values or was it a one-time head fake before the downtrend continues? Please click here for a thorough explanation of what drove the strong used-vehicle value performance in 2018 and the likely scenario going forward.

Competition

What I’ve shared with you about used-vehicle values belongs in the expense category, but what about revenue? It’s a well-documented fact that Uber and Lyft have put significant pressure on Hertz’s ability to generate revenue. However, one could argue that rental cars are still more convenient for longer-term use (e.g., multi-day business trips, family vacations, etc). Well, now we a have competitor entering that space as well. Remember, when I said we’d talk later about the tight correlation between used-vehicle values and operating income until 2013? Now is the time. Look at the chart below which compares Hertz’s operating income to Turo’s rental days.

While we can argue that Lyft and Uber might not be direct competitors, it is absolutely undeniable that every Turo transaction represents a transaction lost by traditional rental car companies. Turo is not the only competitor in this space either, GM made it clear that they want a piece of the rental car business when they announced their Maven car sharing service and since then FCA has followed suit.

Crushing Debt

Perhaps one of the best and simplest ways to measure the safety of an investment in a company with debt is by measuring the company’s ability to cover its interest expense with its operating income. The more times over the interest expense is covered by the operating income, the larger the margin of safety should profit fall for unforeseen circumstances.

Hertz’s interest expense has been greater than their operating income for three years in a row, and their total debt continues to soar. Consider what I’ve shared with you so far and ask yourself if this trend is likely to change. What could Hertz possibly do substantially increase revenue and lower expenses in order to pay back their ever-increasing debt over time? If the answer is nothing or not enough, then Hertz is clearly on an unsustainable path.

Revenue Sources

I think I’ve made a strong argument for why even a slight/moderate drop in used-vehicle values combined with the continued pressure from competitors and the ever-increasing interest expense is enough to close the doors at Hertz over time. However, to fully understand the title of this article, it’s important to consider whether Hertz can survive even a mild recession. In 2018, 68% of Hertz’s U.S. revenue came from their airport locations.

Offsetting some of the pressure from recent competition has been a strong and consistent increase in passenger volume of U.S. flights.

As you can see in the chart above, airline passenger volume falls during a recession. Due to the large percentage of revenue that Hertz generates at airports (strong correlation between revenue and passenger volume on U.S. flights before the current onslaught of competition), we can assume that where airline passenger volume goes, Hertz’s revenue will follow. The decline in revenue from 2013 was due to competition, but it was partially offset by strong and steady growth in airline passenger volume. That thought leads us to the next question, can Hertz avoid bankruptcy in a recession where airline passenger volume is likely to drop and used-vehicle values are likely to fall? My guess is no.

Folks, if I’ve failed to explain my view on why Hertz is a good short, I hope that I’ve at least succeeded in showing you why it’s a terrible investment. The stock is very volatile so it’s not impossible to play a game of hot potato profitably from the long side (I don’t recommend it). Hertz can certainly rally as some metrics improve due to market conditions that are completely beyond the company’s control, just don’t be the last one holding the potato when the music stops.

end

this is interesting:  the Fed released in its latest flow of funds report that households net worth has dropped by a huge 3.7 trillion dollars, its first drop in 4 years

(courtesy zerohedge)

Household Net Worth Tumbles By $3.7 Trillion, First Drop In 4 Years

In the Fed’s latest Flow of Funds report released at noon today, the Fed published the latest snapshot of the US “household” sector as of Dec 31, 2018. What it revealed is that with $120.4 trillion in assets and a modest $16.1 trillion in liabilities, the net worth of US households dipped to $104.3 trillion, its first drop after 12 consecutive quarters of increases, and down $3.7 trillion as a result of the near-bear market in the fourth quarter, which wiped out estimated $4 trillion in various financial assets like corporate equities, mutual and pension funds, and deposits after the market tumbled in Q4, offset by a $345 billion increase in tangible assets, of which $280 billion was in real estate values.

Total household assets in Q4 dropped 3.7 trillion to $120.4 trillion, the first drop since Q3 2015, while at the same time total liabilities, i.e., household borrowings, rose by $133 billion from $15.9 trillion to $16.1 trillion, the bulk of which was $10.3 trillion in home mortgages. Homeowners’ real estate holdings minus the change in mortgage debt rose by $223 billion (a positive number means that the value of real estate is growing at a faster pace than household mortgage debt).

The breakdown of the total household balance sheet as of Q4 is shown below.

And here is the historical change of the US household balance sheet: it shows the first drop in household net worth in nearly four years.

And since the bulk of net worth is held by a tiny fraction of US households, just like on the way up it was roughly 1% of Americans who benefited from the near doubling in net worth from $58.9 trillion after the financial crisis to $108.1 trillion as of Q3 2018 when the S&P hit an all time high, so the drop in the last quarter only truly affected a sliver of the population, since most of America’s assets are held in financial market derivatives.

Which once again brings up the age old problem of the US wealth divide: as the following chart from Deutsche Bank shows, the wealth inequality in the US is now as bad as it just during the Great Depression, with the top 0.1% of the US population owning as many assets as the bottom 90%.

In the CBO’s latest, if somewhat dated, Trends in Family Wealth analysis published in 2016, the budget office showed a breakdown of the net worth chart by wealth group, which sadly shows how the “average” American wealth is anything but, and in reality most of that $100 trillion belongs to just 10% of the US population.

While the breakdown has not caught up with the latest data, it provides an indicative snapshot of who benefits. Here is how the CBO recently explained the wealth is distributed:

  • In 2013, families in the top 10 percent of the wealth distribution held 76 percent of all family wealth, families in the 51st to the 90th percentiles held 23 percent, and those in the bottom half of the distribution held 1 percent.
  • Average wealth was about $4 million for families in the top 10 percent of the wealth distribution, $316,000 for families in the 51st to 90th percentiles, and $36,000 for families in the 26th to 50th percentiles. On average, families at or below the 25th percentile were $13,000 in debt.

In other words, roughly 75% of the $2.2 trillion increase in assets went to benefit just 10% of the population, who also account for roughly 76% of America’s financial net worth.

It also means that just 10% of the US population owns roughly $93 trillion of all US assets, while half of the US population has virtually no wealth, and if anything it is deeply in debt.

Even worse, when looking at how wealth distribution changed from 1989 to 2013, a clear picture emerges. Over the period from 1989 through 2013, family wealth grew at significantly different rates for different segments of the U.S. population. In 2013, for example:The wealth of families at the 90th percentile of the distribution was 54% greater than the wealth at the 90th percentile in 1989, after adjusting for changes in prices.

  • The wealth of those at the median was 4 percent greater than the wealth of their counterparts in 1989.
  • The wealth of families at the 25th percentile was 6 percent less than that of their counterparts in 1989.
  • As the chart below shows, nobody has experienced the same cumulative growth in after-tax income as the “Top 1%”

The above is particularly topical at a time when either party is trying to take credit for the US recovery. Here, while previously Democrats, and now Republicans tout the US “income recovery” they may have forgotten about half of America, but one entity remembers well: loan collectors. As the chart below shows, America’s poor families have never been more in debt.

The share of families in debt (those whose total debt exceeded their total assets) remained almost unchanged between 1989 and 2007 and then increased by 50 percent between 2007 and 2013. In 2013, those families were more in debt than their counterparts had been either in 1989 or in 2007. For instance, 8 percent of families were in debt in 2007 and, on average, their debt exceeded their assets by $20,000. By 2013, in the aftermath of the recession of 2007 to 2009, 12 percent of families were in debt and, on average, their debt exceeded their assets by $32,000.

The increase in average indebtedness between 2007 and 2013 for families in debt was mainly the result of falling home equity and rising student loan balances. In 2007, 3 percent of families in debt had negative home equity: They owed, on average, $16,000 more than their homes were worth. In 2013, that share was 19 percent of families in debt, and they owed, on average, $45,000 more than their homes were worth. The share of families in debt that had outstanding student debt rose from 56 percent in 2007 to 64 percent in 2013, and the average amount of their loan balances increased from $29,000 to $41,000.

Finally, while Q4 household net worth suffered its biggest drop – in absolute dollar terms – since the financial crisis, when it plunged by $3.8 trillion dollars, in percentage terms the decline was far smaller. Furthermore, thanks to the sharp rebound in markets in the first quarter, it is likely safe to say that households have recouped most of their losses and absent a major drop in stocks in the next 3 weeks, US household net worth will likely hit a new all time high some time in the next month or two, a reversal that will not be lost on the socialist wing of the democratic party whose core political campaign is to take as much of this wealth away from America’s “top 1%” and redistribute it as they see fit.

end

The biggy consumer credit reports were released:  total credit rises above 4 Trillion dollars.

Still drowning in debt

(courtesy zerohedge)

Consumer Credit Storms Above $4 Trillion, As Credit Card Debt Hits Record High

After a few months of wild swings, in January US consumer credit normalized rising by $17 billion, in line with expectations, following December’s $15.4 billion increase. The continued increase in borrowings saw total credit storm above $4 trillion, and hitting a new all time high of $4.034 trillion on the back of a America’s ongoing love affair with auto and student loans, and of course credit cards.

Revolving credit increased by $2.6 billion, a rebound from December’s downward revised $939 million, and rising to $1.058 trillion, a new all time high in total credit card debt outstanding.

There was barely a change in the monthly increase in non-revolving credit, i.e. student and auto loans, which jumped by $14.5 billion, up from the $14.4 increase in December, and bringing the nonrevolving total also to a new all time high of $2.977 trillion.

And while January’s rebound in credit card use may assuage some concerns about the sharp slowdown in spending in the end of 2018 and start of 2019, and the subsequent plunge in retail sales, as the household savings rate surged by the most in years, one place where there were no surprises, was in the total amount of student and auto loans: here as expected, both numbers hit fresh all time highs, with a record $1.569 trillion in student loans outstanding, an impressive increase of $10.3 billion in the quarter, while auto debt also hit a new all time high of $1.155 trillion, an increase of $9.5 billion in the quarter.

In short, whether they want to or not, Americans continue to drown even deeper in debt, and enjoying every minute of it.

end
Quite a story: Florida Man steals a rare coin collection and uses values exceeding 33,000 dollars in a supermarket vending machine(courtesy zerohedge)

Florida Man Redeems Rare Stolen Coins Worth $33,000 In Supermarket ‘Coin Star’ Machine

“Florida Man” has really outdone himself this time.

After stealing a rare coin collection from an elderly and disabled retiree, Shane Anthony Mele dumped what their owner said was at least $33,000 worth of collectible coins down a Coin Star star machine at a Florida supermarket and collected their face value, receiving about $30 – enough for a couple of 12 packs.

Florida

Shane Anthony Mele

At least that’s what Michael Johnson, the victim of the theft, told the Palm Beach Post. Johnson said He had befriended Mele after being introduced by a mutual friend a few years ago. And earning his trust, Mele stole the coins – robbing Johnson of his entire retirement.

With most of his retirement savings gone, Johnson has been left to figure out how he will manage to survive.

Michael Johnson envisioned Shane Anthony Mele sending those commemorative presidential dollarsspiraling down a slot, to be converted from $33,000 worth of collectibles to just enough store credit to buy a couple of 12-packs of beer.

“He easily had $33,000 worth, and he dumped it in a Coin Star machine,” Johnson said.

Authorities said Mele, 40, of Riviera Beach confessed he stole rare coins and other items, valued at $350,000, from Johnson’s North Palm Beach office in December.

Mele reportedly said he sold some, then ran many through change machines, where he got just face value.

Johnson, who said he’s disabled and mostly not working, said Mele wiped him out of his life savings.

“I was using those coins to help stay alive,” he said.

“There’s no insurance that covers this kind of thing, really. Not at the losses we’re talking about,” he said. “It’s put me in a world of hurt.”

North Palm Beach Police swiftly arrested Mele – who still had some of the coins in his possession – and booked him on charges of grand theft with a value of more than $100,000. In a sign that drug addiction may have motivated the theft, he was also booked on a 10-count drug charge that police said was unrel;ated to the theft. In addition to the spare change he received from the Coin Star machine, Mele said he took some of the coins to a local coin & jewelry shop, where he sold them for roughly $4,000.

Mele was booked the evening of Feb. 1 at the Palm Beach County Jail, charged with grand theft of more than $100,000, along with a unrelated 10-count drug charge. He left Feb. 4 after posting bond, jail and court records show.

Mele could not be located for comment. A North Palm Beach Police report shows no address, and the telephone number shown for Mele was disconnected.

Johnson, who’s in the finance industry, said he inherited a large coin collection, as well as a love of collecting, from his father, who died about six years ago. He said he started collecting at age 16 and estimated he had more than 100,000 coins in 80 boxes, some worth just a little and some extremely valuable.

Now, he said, they’re mostly gone.

Whether Johnson might have the chance to recover the coins remains unclear.

end

SWAMP STORIES

House democrats erupt into turmoil as they cannot even get a resolution on an anti semitism rebuke from the far left

(courtesy zerohedge)

 

House Democrats Erupt In Closed-Door Chaos As Party Fractures Over Anti-Semitism Rebuke

House Democrats erupted in protest over plans to vote this week on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism – an indirect sanction on freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) in response to the suggestion that supporters of Israel have “allegiance to a foreign country.”

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said on Wednesday that there may not be a vote this week on the measure, saying “We’re discussing what is the best way to address it,” according to the Washington Post

Walking into them meeting, a confident Pelosi told the media that the Omar situation “would be resolved,” adding “I think you make more of it than there is . . . to be very honest with you — the press loves to foment unease in the Democratic Party but we are very united” regarding the Democratic House agenda.

Moments later, all hell broke loose:

Inside the meeting, according to multiple people present, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) tried to keep her caucus focused on a planned Friday vote on a sweeping campaign and elections reform bill. She acknowledged “internal issues,” according to notes taken by a Democratic aide present, and urged members not to “question the motivations of our colleagues.”

But moments later, multiple House members stood up to challenge the decision — endorsed by Pelosi and the rest of the House Democratic leadership — to move forward with a resolution condemning religious hatred. Initially the measure targeted only anti-Semitism, with some Democrats pushing for a direct rebuke of Omar, but by Tuesday night — facing backlash from members not on board with the plan — leaders decided to expand it to include anti-Muslim bias. –Washington Post

Several Democrats those who took issue with the measure were members of the Congressional Black Caucus, who opposed even an indirect rebuke of Rep. Omar when they should be focusing on how to attack President Trump.

“I think there’s a big rise in anti-Semitism and racism, and that’s a bigger conversation we need to be having.” said Rep. Cedric L. Richmond (D-LA). “But it starts at 1600 Pennsylvania. It doesn’t start with one member out of 435 members of Congress.

Why are we doing this?” asked Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), who said that a resolution would be “redundant and unnecessary,” likely referring to the January 11 rebuke of Omar after she accused the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) of contributing to pro-Israel politicians.

“We’ve individually and collectively already responded to the fact that we oppose all ‘-isms’ that do not treat people in this country fairly and justly,” said Coleman. “To continue to engage in this discussion is simply an opportunity to give both the media and Republicans distractions from our agenda. We’ve got important work to do.”

Other members, including Richmond, said it was unfair that the caucus would take action against one of its own members while other GOP lawmakers have uttered offensive remarks with no retribution. This week, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) accused Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) of anti-Semitism for a tweet referring to Tom Steyer, a Democratic donor of Jewish descent as “Tom $teyer,” and Richmond and several other members mentioned Trump. –Washington Post

“We need to have equity in our outrage,” said Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) who said after the meeting that she was focused on “the occupant of this White House who is seeding every form of hate, emboldening it with racist rhetoric and policies. That is who we all need to be focused on, and this is a distraction.”

According to those present, Omar attended the meeting but did not speak.

Jewish lawmakers, meanwhile, insist that the House needs to pass the resolution condemning anti-Semitism in response to Omar’s remarks.

Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.), who is among the Jewish members involved in crafting the initial resolution, rose to defend the resolution and, according to one member present, grew emotional. He said his colleagues needed to understand that these sort of words were hurtful to people like himself who had dealt with them all their lives. –Washington Post

President Trump, meanwhile, capitalized on the splinter among House Democrats, tweeting Wednesday afternoon: “It is shameful that House Democrats won’t take a stronger stand against Anti-Semitism in their conference. Anti-Semitism has fueled atrocities throughout history and it’s inconceivable they will not act to condemn it!”

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

It is shameful that House Democrats won’t take a stronger stand against Anti-Semitism in their conference. Anti-Semitism has fueled atrocities throughout history and it’s inconceivable they will not act to condemn it!

Other GOP leaders piled on as well – accusing Democrats on Wednesday of tolerating anti-Semitism by refusing to remove Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee – which as the Post notes, has jurisdiction of the relationship between the United States and Israel.

“They should stop empowering her disgusting hatred before it turns into horror,” said Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) – House Republican Conference chairwoman.

“It should not be tough to stand up against this type of talk,” said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who compared the Democrats’ decision to that faced by Republicans in the case of Rep. Steve King (R-IA) after he publicly questioned why the phrase “white supremacy” is offensive. King was immediately stripped of his committee assignments – something the Democrats refuse to do with Omar.

“I’m just wondering, within their conference, if they’re willing to lead,” added McCarthy.

For Democrats, the internal divide over how to handle Omar’s statements has been exacerbated by members targeting each other on Twitter, where much of the public debate has played out — both among Democrats and between members of the two parties.

At one point during the meeting, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), a close Pelosi ally, pleaded with Democrats: “Everyone stop tweeting!” –Washington Post

Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) said afterward that by fighting publicly, Democrats were playing into GOP hands.

“We are now in the majority, and Republicans have an intent to divide us whenever they can,” said Rep. Jayapal, adding that her colleagues should find “a process where these things can play out in private and not in front of everybody.”

On Tuesday, Rep. Juan Vargas (D-CA) was publicly targeted by Democratic Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who knocked him for saying that questioning the US-Israel relationship should be out of bounds.

Vargas shot back on Wednesday, saying “She could have come down the hall and asked me what my opinion is. That would have been fine,” adding “We have a very different opinion here, I believe. To question someone’s loyalty because they’re Jewish, I think, is terrible. It’s something that we shouldn’t question at all.”

end

Michael Cohen lies again:  He did ask is lawyer to seek a Trump pardon

(courtesy zerohedge)

 

Michael Cohen Asked Lawyer To Seek Trump Pardon

Remember when Michael Cohen told the House Oversight Committee last week the he “never asked” for a presidential pardon? As it turns out, that wasn’t true.

Earlier this week, WSJ reported that, shortly after the FBI had raided Cohen’s home, office and hotel room, Cohen’s lawyer, Stephen Ryan, met with several Trump administration attorneys, including Jay Sekulow, Rudy Giuliani and Joanna Hendon, who insinuated that a presidential pardon wouldn’t be forthcoming should Cohen face conviction.

Cohen

Now, the Murdoch-owned paper has followed up its original report with something even more damning: While Cohen could have easily claimed that he didn’t instruct his lawyer to ask about a pardon, the paper  said Thursday that Cohen had in fact asked about a pardon, citing comments from his attorney, Lanny Davis. According to Davis, Cohen explicitly told Ryan to “explore possibilities of a pardon.”

Lanny Davis, a lawyer for Mr. Cohen, said Wednesday that in the months after the FBI raid, Mr. Cohen was open to a pardon from the president.

“During that time period, he directed his attorney to explore possibilities of a pardon at one point with Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani as well as other lawyers advising President Trump,” Mr. Davis said. He referred to the discussions with the president’s lawyers as the “ongoing ‘dangling’ of a possible pardon by Trump representatives privately and in the media.”

Ostensibly, Ryan met with the Trump attorneys to review documents and files that had been seized from Cohen’s office after Cohen entered into a joint defense agreement with the Trump legal team. However, Cohen later broke with that agreement and started cooperating with Manhattan prosecutors. Around that time, he hired Davis, a Clinton-linked Democratic super attorney.

Still, Davis argued that Cohen’s statement to the House Committee had been truthful because he had instructed Davis to “never accept a pardon” from Trump.

“After July 2, 2018, Mr. Cohen authorized me as a new lawyer to say publicly Mr. Cohen would never accept a pardon from President Trump even if offered. That continues to be the case,” Mr. Davis said Wednesday. “His statement at the Oversight Hearing was true—and consistent with his post-joint defense agreement commitment to tell the truth.”

Congressional investigators have been probing conversations between lawyers for Mr. Cohen and the president about possible pardons, according to document requests issued Monday by the House Judiciary Committee to dozens of Trump associates, including Mr. Sekulow and Mr. Cohen.

Davis’s revelation about Cohen’s seeking a pardon came after the House Judiciary (led by Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler) subpoenaed dozens of Trump administration and campaign officials and associates as it seeks to revive the Russia collusion narrative. Both Cohen and Sekulow were among the individuals who received subpoenas.

So, will Cohen face any repercussions for lying to Congress again last week? We somehow doubt the Democrat-controlled House will make this a high priority, particularly as Cohen prepares to report to jail in May.

SWAMP STORIES/MAJOR STORIES//THE KING REPORT
and special thanks to Chris Powell of GATA for sending this down for us:

 

-END-

I WILL SEE YOU FRIDAY NIGHT

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