APRIL 1/GOLD AND SILVER HAVE A SOLID DAY: GOLD UP $13.00/SILVER UP 42 CENTS//A VERY STRONG ADVANCE IN GOLD TONNAGE STANDING FOR APRIL: UP TO 78.4 TONNES//SILVER STANDING: 14.190 MILLION OZ//WE HAVE A HUGE OI FOR MAY AT 116,000 OI CONTRACTS//CORONAVIRUS UPDATES/VACCINE UPDATES//CHINA VS WORLD//ITALY EXPELS TWO RUSSIAN DIPLOMATS AS SPYS WERE CAUGHT RECEIVING NATO DOCUMENTS//NATO VS RUSSIA//RUSSIA VS UKRAINE AND EUROPE//18 MILLION USA CITIZENS STILL RECEIVING BENEFITS//SWAMP STORIES FOR YOU TONIGHT//

GOLD:$1729.50 UP  $13.00   The quote is London spot price

Silver:$24.90 UP  $0.42   London spot price ( cash market)

your data…

 

Closing access prices:  London spot

i)Gold : $1729.00 LONDON SPOT  4:30 pm

ii)SILVER:  $24.92//LONDON SPOT  4:30 pm

PLATINUM AND PALLADIUM PRICES BY KITCO

PLATINIUM  $1206.00 UP $26.00

PALLADIUM: 2581.00 UP $41. PER OZ

 

James McShirley on the pricing of gold eagles/and silver eagle33

Even the TV pundits are now asking, without bothering to investigate, “what’s wrong with gold?” Yes indeed, what’s wrong with gold, other than a relentless daily cartel assault on PAPER gold. The physical coin premiums are widening out to spot. Gold Eagles are showing $200+ to spot, Silver Eagles $10+ to spot, if you can even find them. Supply and demand- fuggettaboutit. The more dollars printed the more valuable they become, and the more scarce gold and silver are the lower their prices go, so sayeth the Working Group.

Jim McShirley

Editorial of The New York Sun | February 1, 2021

end

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COMEX DATA

 
 
 

COMEX DATA

JPMorgan has been receiving gold with reckless abandon and sometimes supplying (stopping)

receiving today  1919/3193

EXCHANGE: COMEX
CONTRACT: APRIL 2021 COMEX 100 GOLD FUTURES
SETTLEMENT: 1,713.800000000 USD
INTENT DATE: 03/31/2021 DELIVERY DATE: 04/05/2021
FIRM ORG FIRM NAME ISSUED STOPPED
____________________________________________________________________________________________
072 H GOLDMAN 754
118 H MACQUARIE FUT 1163
167 C MAREX 2
332 H STANDARD CHARTE 987
435 H SCOTIA CAPITAL 43
624 C BOFA SECURITIES 3
624 H BOFA SECURITIES 42
657 C MORGAN STANLEY 449 70
661 C JP MORGAN 1913
661 H JP MORGAN 6
685 C RJ OBRIEN 2
686 C STONEX FINANCIA 54 46
690 C ABN AMRO 6
709 C BARCLAYS 233
709 H BARCLAYS 425
732 C RBC CAP MARKETS 6
737 C ADVANTAGE 19
800 C MAREX SPEC 60 34
880 H CITIGROUP 31
905 C ADM 19 19
____________________________________________________________________________________________

TOTAL: 3,193 3,193
MONTH TO DATE: 20,061

ISSUED: 0

Goldman Sachs:  stopped:  754

 
 

NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR  APRIL. CONTRACT: 3,193 NOTICE(S) FOR 319,300 OZ  (9.931 tonnes)

TOTAL NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED SO FAR:  20,061 NOTICES FOR 2,006,100 OZ  (62.398 tonnes) 

SILVER//APRIL CONTRACT

 

657 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR 3,285,000  OZ/

total number of notices filed so far this month: 2350 for 11,750,000  oz

BITCOIN MORNING QUOTE  $58,482   DOWN 545

BITCOIN AFTERNOON QUOTE.:  $58,869 down 158 DOLLARS  

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

GLD AND SLV INVENTORIES:

GLD AND SLV INVENTORIES:

Gold

WITH GOLD UP $13.00  AND NO PHYSICAL TO BE FOUND ANYWHERE:

WITH ALL REFINER CLOSED//MEXICO ORDERING ALL MINES SHUT:   WHERE ARE THEY GETTING THE “PHYSICAL?STRANGE!

A  SMALL  CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//:  A PAPER  DEPOSIT OF 0.88 TONNES OF PAPER GOLD FROM GLD.

WITH RESPECT TO GLD WITHDRAWALS: 

GOLD IS “RETURNED” TO THE BANK OF ENGLAND WHO ARE CALLING IN THEIR LEASES: THE GOLD NEVER LEAVES THE B OF ENGLAND IN THE FIRST PLACE. THE BANK IS PROTECTING ITSELF IN CASE OF COMMERCIAL FAILURE

THIS IS A MASSIVE FRAUD!!

GLD: 1,037.50 TONNES OF GOLD//

Silver

AND WITH NO SILVER AROUND  TODAY: WITH SILVER UP 48 CENTS

A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV// A WITHDRAWAL  OF 3.898 MILLION OZ  FROM THE SLV/

WITH REGARD TO SILVER WITHDRAWALS FROM THE SLV:

THE SILVER WITHDRAWALS ARE ACTUALLY “RETURNED” TO JPM, AS JPMORGAN CALLS IN ITS LEASES WITH THE SLV FUND.  (THE STORY IS THE SAME AS THE BANK OF ENGLAND’S GOLD). THE SILVER NEVER LEAVES JPMORGAN’S VAULTS. THEY ARE CALLING IN THEIR LEASES FOR FEAR OF SOLVENCY ISSUES.

INVENTORY RESTS AT:

575.124  MILLION OZ./SLV

xxxxx

GLD closing price//NYSE 161.99 UP $2.03 OR  1.25%

XXXXXXXXXXXXX

SLV closing price NYSE 23.81 UP $0.41 OR 1.59%

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

 
 

 

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Let us have a look at the data for today

THE COMEX OI IN SILVER FELL BY A STRONG SIZED 3584 CONTRACTS FROM 154,987 DOWN TO 151,403, AND FURTHER FROM THE NEW RECORD OF 244,710, SET FEB 25/2020. THE LOSS IN OI OCCURRED DESPITE OUR  $0.37 RISE IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX  ON WEDNESDAY. IT SEEMS THAT THE LOSS IN COMEX OI IS  DUE TO A HUMONGOUS BANKER AND ALGO  SHORT COVERING !//HUGE REDDIT RAPTOR BUYING//.. COUPLED AGAINST SMALL EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL ISSUANCE. WE ALSO  HAD SOME LONG LIQUIDATION AS WE LOST A STRONG 3060 TOTAL CONTRACTS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES. 

 

WE WERE  NOTIFIED  THAT WE HAD A SMALL  NUMBER OF  COMEX LONGS TRANSFERRING THEIR CONTRACTS TO LONDON THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE: 525,, AS WE HAD THE FOLLOWING ISSUANCE:  MARCH  0 MAY:  525 AND ZERO ALL  OTHER MONTHS  AND THEREFORE TOTAL ISSUANCE 525 CONTRACTS. THE BANKERS ARE NOW BEING BITTEN BY THOSE SERIAL FORWARDS (EFP’S CIRCULATING IN LONDON)AS THEY ARE NOW BEING EXERCISED AND COMING BACK TO NEW YORK FOR REDEMPTION OF METAL.  THE COST TO SERVICE THESE SERIAL FORWARDS IS HIGH TO OUR BANKERS  BUT THEY HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO ISSUE A FEW OF THEM!

HISTORY OF SILVER OZ STANDING AT THE COMEX FOR THE PAST 33 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.:

27.120 MILLION OZ STANDING IN MARCH.

3.875 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR SILVER IN APRIL.

18.845 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR SILVER IN MAY.

2.660 MILLION OZ STANDING FOR SILVER IN JUNE//

22.605 MILLION OZ  STANDING FOR JULY

10.025   MILLION OZ INITIAL STANDING IN AUGUST.

43.030   MILLION OZ INITIALLY STANDING IN SEPT. (HUGE)

7.32     MILLION OZ INITIALLY STANDING IN OCT

2.630     MILLION OZ STANDING FOR NOV.

20.970   MILLION OZ  FINAL STANDING IN DEC

2020

5.075     MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN JAN

1.480    MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN FEB

23.005  MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING FOR MAR** 

4.660  MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING FOR APRIL****

45.220 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING FOR MAY***

2.205  MILLION OF FINAL STANDING FOR JUNE

86.470 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN JULY…RECORD HIGHEST EVER

6.475 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN AUGUST

55.400 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN SEPT

8.900 MILLION OZ INITIALLY STANDING IN OCT.

3.950 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING IN NOV.

46.685 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING FOR DEC.

2021

6.890 MILLION FINAL STANDING FOR JAN 2021

12.020  MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING FOR FEB 2021

58.425 MILLION OZ FINAL STANDING FOR MARCH 2021//2ND HIGHEST EVER RECORDED

14.190 MILLION OZ INITIAL STANDING FOR APRIL

 

WEDNESDAY, AGAIN OUR CROOKS USED COPIOUS PAPER TRYING TO LIQUIDATE SILVER’S PRICE …AND THEY WERE UNSUCCESSFUL IN KNOCKING THE PRICE OF SILVER DOWN ,(IT ROSE BY $0.37) OUR OFFICIAL SECTOR/BANKERS WERE  SOMEWHAT SUCCESSFUL IN THEIR ATTEMPT TO FLEECE SOME SILVER LONGS AS  WE HAD A NET LOSS OF 3059 CONTRACTS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES, THE MAJOR CAUSE WAS DUE TO i)HUMONGOUS BANKER/ALGO SHORT COVERING// WE ALSO HAD  ii)STRONG REDDIT RAPTOR BUYING//.    iii)  A SMALL ISSUANCE OF EXCHANG EFOR PHYSICALS 2) A STRONG DECREASE IN SILVER STANDING FOR COMEX SILVER  // APRIL: 14.190 MILLION OZ, iv) STRONG COMEX OI LOSS AND iv) SOME LONG LIQUIDATION (PROBABLY VERY MINOR) //.YOU CAN BET THE FARM THAT OUR BANKERS  ARE DESPERATE TO LIQUIDATE THEIR HUGE SHORT POSITIONS IN SILVER..

 
 

HISTORICAL ACCUMULATION OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS

APRIL

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

525 CONTRACTS (FOR 1 TRADING DAY(S) TOTAL 525 CONTRACTS) OR 2.625 MILLION OZ: (AVERAGE PER DAY: 525 CONTRACTS OR 2,625 MILLION OZ/DAY)

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH OF MAR: 2.625 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON.

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE HUGE SUPPLY THIS MONTH IN SILVER:  SO FAR THIS MONTH OF MAR:  2.625 MILLION PAPER OZ HAVE MORPHED OVER TO LONDON.

JAN EFP ACCUMULATION FINAL:  113.735 MILLION OZ

FEB EFP ACCUMULATION FINAL:   208.18 MILLION OZ (RAPIDLY INCREASING AGAIN)

MAR EFP ACCUMULATION SO FAR: A STRONG: 103.450 MILLION OZ  (DRAMATICALLY SLOWING DOWN AGAIN//FEARS OF EFP CONTRACTS BEING EXERCISED FOR METAL)

APRIL: 2.625 MILLION OZ

RESULT: WE HAD A STRONG SIZED DECREASE IN COMEX OI SILVER COMEX CONTRACTS OF 3584, DESPITE OUR  $0.37 GAIN IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX ///WEDNESDAY .…THE CME NOTIFIED US THAT WE HAD A SMALL SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF 525 CONTRACTS WHICH  EXITED OUT OF THE SILVER COMEX  TO LONDON  AS FORWARDS.

TODAY WE HAD A STRONG SIZED LOSS OF 3059 OI CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES (DESPITE OUR  $0.37 GAIN IN PRICE)//THE DOMINANT FEATURE TODAY WAS THE MASSIVE BANKER SHORTCOVERING.THEY SEE THE TEA LEAVES FORMING AND THEY ARE GETTING OUT OF DODGE IN A BIG WAY…TOO MANY WISH TO STAND FOR DELIVERY…

THE TALLY//EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS

i.e  525 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS HEADED FOR LONDON  (EFP’s)TOGETHER WITH A STRONG SIZED DECREASE OF 3584 OI COMEX CONTRACTS. AND ALL OF THIS DEMAND HAPPENED WITH OUR $0.37 GAIN IN PRICE OF SILVER/AND A CLOSING PRICE OF $24.48//WEDNESDAY’S TRADING. YET WE STILL HAVE A STRONG AMOUNT OF SILVER STANDING AT THE COMEX FOR DELIVERY. 

FOR THE NEW APRIL.  DELIVERY MONTH/ THEY FILED AT THE COMEX: 657 NOTICE(S) FOR 3,285,000, OZ OF SILVER.

IN SILVER,PRIOR TO TODAY, WE  SET THE NEW COMEX RECORD OF OPEN INTEREST AT 244,196 CONTRACTS ON AUG 22.2018. AND AGAIN THIS HAS BEEN SET WITH A LOW PRICE OF $14.70//TODAY’S RECORD OF 244,705 WAS SET WITH A PRICE OF: 18.91 (FEB 25/2020)

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)

 
 
 
 

GOLD

IN GOLD, THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST FELL BY A STRONG SIZED 10,006 CONTRACTS TO 457,315,AND FURTHER FROM OUR NEW RECORD (SET JAN 24/2020) AT 799,541 AND  PREVIOUS TO THAT: (SET JAN 6/2020) AT 797,110.

THE STRONG DECREASE IN COMEX OI OCCURRED DESPITE OUR STRONG RISE IN PRICE  OF $28.80///COMEX GOLD TRADING//WEDNESDAY.AS IN SILVER WE MUST HAVE HAD STRONG BANKER/ALGO SHORT COVERING ACCOMPANYING OUR FAIR SIZED EXCHANGE FOR  PHYSICAL ISSUANCE. WE ALSO HAD ZERO LONG LIQUIDATION AS ALMOST ALL OF THE LOSS IN OI WAS DUE TO FINAL SPREADER LIQUIDATION AND BANKER SHORT COVERING. WE HAD A GOOD LOSS OF 6187 TOTAL CONTRACTS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES.  WE ALSO HAD A VERY STRONG ADVANCE IN GOLD TONNAGE STANDING UP TO 78.332 TONNES.   THIS IS UNUSUAL FOR DAY 2, AND THUS WE WILL PROBABLY SEE THE AMOUNT OF GOLD STANDING EACH AND EVERY DAY THIS MONTH.

 

YET ALL OF..THIS HAPPENED WITH OUR GAIN IN PRICE OF $28.80 WITH RESPECT TO WEDNESDAY’S TRADING

WE HAD A VOLUME OF 0    4 -GC CONTRACTS//OPEN INTEREST  0//

WE HAD A FAIR SIZED LOSS OF 6187 OI CONTRACTS (19.244 TONNES) ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES 

 

E.F.P. ISSUANCE

THE CME RELEASED THE DATA FOR EFP ISSUANCE AND IT TOTALED A HUMONGOUS SIZED 3819 CONTRACTS:

CONTRACT . FEB:0,  APRIL:  0 AND JUNE:  3819  ALL OTHER MONTHS ZERO//TOTAL: 3819.  The NEW COMEX OI for the gold complex rests at 457,315. 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 EXCHANGE 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 STRONG SIZED DECREASE IN TOTAL CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES OF 6187 CONTRACTS: 10,006 CONTRACTS DECREASED AT THE COMEX AND 3819 EFP OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON. THUS  TOTAL OI LOSS OF 6187 CONTRACTS OR 19.244 TONNES.

CALCULATIONS ON GAIN/LOSS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES

WE HAD A FAIR SIZED ISSUANCE IN EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS (3819) ACCOMPANYING THE STRONG SIZED LOSS IN COMEX OI  (10,006 OI): TOTAL LOSS IN THE TWO EXCHANGES:  6187CONTRACTS. WE NO DOUBT HAD 1 ) HUGE BANKER SHORT COVERING AS OUR BANKERS ARE RUNNING FROM DODGE AND CONSIDERABLE ALGO SHORT COVERING ,2.) HUGE INITIAL STANDING AT THE GOLD COMEX FOR THE FRONT APRIL. MONTH AND ANOTHER ADVANCE ON DAY 2 TO   78.332 TONNES)  3) ZERO LONG LIQUIDATION,  /// ;4) STRONG COMEX OI LOSS AND 5) FAIR ISSUANCE OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL AND FINAL LIQUIDATION OF OUR SPREADERS  ...ALL OF THIS HAPPENED WITH OUR STRONG GAIN IN GOLD PRICE TRADING WEDNESDAY//$28.80!!. 

 

 
 

SPREADING OPERATIONS/NOW SWITCHING TO SILVER  (WE SWITCH OVER TO SILVER ON MAR  1)

FOR NEWCOMERS, HERE ARE THE DETAILS:

SPREADING LIQUIDATION HAS NOW COMMENCED IN SILVER  AS WE HEAD TOWARDS THE  NEW ACTIVE FRONT MONTH OF MAY.

HERE IS A BRIEF SYNOPSIS OF HOW THE CROOKS FLEECE UNSUSPECTING LONGS IN THE SPREADING ENDEAVOUR;

 
 

MODUS OPERANDI OF THE CORRUPT BANKERS AS TO HOW THEY HANDLE THEIR SPREAD OPEN INTERESTS:

.

AS I HAVE MENTIONED IN PREVIOUS COMMENTARIES:

“AS YOU WILL SEE, THE CROOKS WILL NOW SWITCH TO SILVER AS THEY INCREASE THE OPEN INTEREST FOR THE SPREADERS. THE TOTAL COMEX SILVER OPEN INTEREST WILL RISE FROM NOW ON UNTIL ONE WEEK PRIOR TO FIRST DAY NOTICE AND THAT IS WHEN THEY START THEIR CRIMINAL LIQUIDATION.

HERE IS HOW THE CROOKS USED SPREADING AS WE ARE NOW INTO THE NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF APRIL. HEADING TOWARDS THE ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF MAY FOR SILVER:

YOU WILL ALSO NOTICE THAT THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST  STARTS TO RISE IN THIS NON ACTIVE MONTH OF APRIL. BUT SO IS THE OPEN INTEREST OF SPREADERS. THE OPEN INTEREST IN SILVER WILL CONTINUE TO RISE UNTIL ONE WEEK BEFORE FIRST DAY NOTICE OF AN UPCOMING  ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH (MAY), AND THAT IS WHEN THE CROOKS SELL THEIR SPREAD POSITIONS BUT NOT AT THE SAME TIME OF THE DAY.  THEY WILL USE THE SELL SIDE OF THE EQUATION TO CREATE THE CASCADE (ALONG WITH THEIR COLLUSIVE FRIENDS) AND THEN COVER ON THE BUY SIDE OF THE SPREAD SITUATION AT THE END  OF THE DAY. THEY DO THIS TO AVOID POSITION LIMIT DETECTION. THE LIQUIDATION OF THE SPREADING FORMATION CONTINUES FOR EXACTLY ONE WEEK AND ENDS ON FIRST DAY NOTICE.”

 

HISTORICAL ACCUMULATION OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS IN 2021 INCLUDING TODAY

APRIL

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S GOLD AT J.P. MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES: (EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF APRIL : 3819, CONTRACTS OR 381,900 oz OR 11.878 TONNES (1 TRADING DAY(S) AND THUS AVERAGING: 3819 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE  SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :  THIS MONTH IN 1 TRADING DAY(S) IN  TONNES: 11.878 TONNES

TOTAL ANNUAL GOLD PRODUCTION, 2020, THROUGHOUT THE WORLD EX CHINA EX RUSSIA: 3555 TONNES

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS 11.878/3550 x 100% TONNES =0.334% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S YEAR 2021 TO DATE:
 
 
JANUARY: 265.26 TONNES (RAPIDLY INCREASING AGAIN)
 
FEB  :  171.24 TONNES  ( DEFINITELY SLOWING DOWN AGAIN)..
 
 
MARCH:.   276.50 TONNES (STRONG AGAIN///IT SURPASSED JANUARY!!)

 

APRIL:      11.878 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

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

1.Today, we had the open interest at the comex, in SILVER, ROSE BY A STRONG SIZED 3584 CONTRACTS FROM 154,402 DOWN TO 151,402 AND FURTHER FROM OUR COMEX RECORD //244,710(SET FEB 25/2020).  THE LAST RECORDS WERE SET  IN AUG.2018 AT 244,196 WITH A SILVER PRICE OF $14.78/(AUGUST 22/2018)..THE PREVIOUS RECORD TO THAT 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  2 3/4 YEARS AGO.  THE PRICE OF SILVER ON THAT DAY: $17.89.

THE STRONG SIZED LOSS IN OI SILVER COMEX WAS PRIMARILY DUE TO; 1) HUGE BANKER SHORT COVERING//ALGO SHORT COVERING//REDDIT RAPTOR BUYING , 2) A SMALL ISSUANCE OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS (SEE BELOW), 3) A STRONG DECREASE IN  STANDING FOR SILVER  AT THE COMEX FOR APRIL AT 14.190 MILLION OZ//., AND 4) SOME LONG LIQUIDATION, IF ANY

EFP ISSUANCE 525 CONTRACTS

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

 MARCH:  0 ; MAY: 2225 AND ALL OTHER MONTHS: ZERO. TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE: 525 CONTRACTS. EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON.  IF WE TAKE THE  COMEX OI LOSS OF 3584 CONTRACTS AND ADD TO THE 525 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S,  WE OBTAIN A STRONG SIZED LOSS OF 3059 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACTS FROM OUR TWO EXCHANGES. THUS IN OUNCES, THE LOSS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES 15.300 MILLION  OZ, OCCURRED DESPITE OUR $0.37 GAIN IN PRICE///

 

BOTH THE SILVER COMEX AND THE GOLD COMEX ARE IN STRESS AS THE BANKERS SCOUR THE BOWELS OF THE EXCHANGE FOR METAL..THE EVIDENCE IS CLEAR: HUGE AMOUNTS OF PHYSICAL STANDING FOR BOTH  SILVER AND GOLD .

 

(report Harvey)

 

2 ) 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 24.42 PTS OR .71%   //Hang Sang CLOSED UP 560.39 PTS OR 1.90%    /The Nikkei closed UP 210.07 POINTS OR 0.86%//Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP 0.67%

/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN AT 6.5735 /Oil DOWN TO 59.49 dollars per barrel for WTI and 62.95 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED ALL GREEN EXCEPT SPAIN//  ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN AGAINST THE DOLLAR AT 6.5735. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.5812   : /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /TRADE DEAL NOW DEAD..TRUMP  RAISED RATES TO 25%

 
 
 
 
 

COMEX DATA//AMOUNTS STANDING//VOLUME OF TRADING/INVENTORY MOVEMENTS

GOLD

LET US BEGIN:

 

THE TOTAL COMEX GOLD OPEN INTEREST FELL  BY HUGE SIZED 10,006 CONTRACTS TO 459,158 MOVING FURTHER FROM  THE RECORD THAT WAS SET IN JANUARY/2020: {799,541  OI(SET JAN 16/2020)} AND  PREVIOUS TO THAT: 797,110 (SET JAN 7/2020).  AND THIS HUGE COMEX DECREASE OCCURRED DESPITE OUR STRONG GAIN OF $28.80 IN GOLD PRICING WEDNESDAY’S COMEX TRADING…WE ALSO HAD A FAIR EFP ISSUANCE (3819 CONTRACTS). .AS THEY WERE PAID OFF NOT TO TAKE DELIVERY.  MOST OF THE COMEX LOSS WAS DUE TO THE FINAL LIQUIDATION OF OUR SPREADERS AS WELL AS SOME BANKER SHORT COVERING

WE HAVE ALSO  LATELY WITNESSED  EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS ISSUED BEING SMALL….. AS IT JUST TOO COSTLY FOR THEM TO CONTINUE SERVICING THE COSTS OF SERIAL FORWARDS CIRCULATING IN LONDON. HOWEVER, MUCH TO THE ANNOYANCE OF OUR BANKERS, THE COMEX IS THE SCENE OF AN ASSAULT ON GOLD AS LONDONERS, NOT BEING ABLE TO FIND ANY PHYSICAL ON THAT SIDE OF THE POND, EXERCISE THESE CIRCULATING EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS IN LONDON AND FORCING DELIVERY OF REAL METAL OVER HERE AS THE OBLIGATION STILL RESTS WITH NEW YORK BANKERS.

(SEE BELOW)

WE  HAD 0    4 -GC VOLUME//open interest REMAINS AT   0

EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL ISSUANCE

WE ARE NOW IN THE ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF APRIL..  THE CME REPORTS THAT THE BANKERS ISSUED A FAIR SIZED TRANSFER THROUGH THE EFP ROUTE AS THESE LONGS RECEIVED A DELIVERABLE LONDON FORWARD TOGETHER WITH A FIAT BONUS., THAT IS 3819 EFP CONTRACTS WERE ISSUED:  ;  AND APRIL:  0, JUNE:  3819 & ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS:

TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE: 3819  CONTRACTS.

YOU WILL FIND THAT WHEN WE HAVE A GOOD PREMIUM IN THE FUTURES/SPOT, THEN THE NUMBER OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS DECLINE IN NUMBERS.  THE COST IS JUST TOO MUCH FOR THEM TO ISSUE. TODAY THAT PREMIUM WAS SMALL AND THUS A LITTLE MORE THAN USUAL OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS WERE ISSUED.

HOWEVER, WHEN WE HAVE BACKWARDATION, THE OPPOSITE IS TRUE. EFP ISSUANCE IS VERY COSTLY BUT THE REAL PROBLEM IS THE SCARCITY OF METAL AND IT IS FAR BETTER FOR OUR BANKERS TO PAY OFF INDIVIDUALS THAN RISK INVESTORS ESPECIALLY FROM LONDON STANDING FOR DELIVERY. LONDON IS OUT OF METAL.

ON A NET BASIS IN OPEN INTEREST WE LOST THE FOLLOWING TODAY ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES: A GOOD SIZED 6187  TOTAL CONTRACTS IN THAT 3819 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE LOST A STRONG SIZED  COMEX OI  OF 10,006 CONTRACTS.WE HAVE A HUGE AMOUNT OF GOLD TONNAGE STANDING FOR APRIL  (78.416 TONNES) WHICH FOLLOWS MARCH:  (30.205 TONNES) WHICH FOLLOWED FEB (113.424 TONNES)  WHICH FOLLOWED OUR STRONG LEVEL OF JAN 2021 GOLD . ((6.500 TONNES).  

THE BANKERS WERE UNSUCCESSFUL IN LOWERING GOLD’S PRICE  //// (IT ROSE $28.80)., AND WERE UNSUCCESSFUL IN FLEECING ANY LONGS AS WE HAD A HUGE NET LOSS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES OF 4344 CONTRACTS WITH THE ENTIRE LOSS DUE TO FINAL SPREADER LIQUIDATION AND BANKER SHORT COVERING.  THE TOTAL LOSS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES REGISTERED  19.244 TONNES TONNES, ACCOMPANYING OUR STRONG GOLD TONNAGE STANDING FOR APRIL (78.416 TONNES)..I  STRONGLY BELIEVE THAT 0UR BANKER FRIENDS ARE GETTING QUITE NERVOUS.  THE SMALL GAIN IN COMEX OI IS DUE TO BANKER SHORT COVERING IN A BIG WAY.  THEY ARE LOOKING OVER THEIR SHOULDERS AND WITNESSING MASSIVE SILVER/GOLD SHORTAGES THAT CANNOT BE COVERED. THEY ARE TRYING TO FLEE IN HASTE “FROM DODGE”. 

NET LOSS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES :: 6187 CONTRACTS OR  618700 OZ OR  19.244  TONNES

COMMODITY LAW SUGGESTS THAT COMMODITY FUTURES OPEN INTEREST SHOULD APPROXIMATE 3% OF TOTAL PRODUCTION.  IN GOLD THE WORLD PRODUCES AROUND 3500 TONNES PER YEAR BUT ONLY 2200 TONNES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THE WEST (THUS EXCLUDING RUSSIA, CHINA ETC..WHO KEEP 100% OF THEIR PRODUCT.
 
THUS IN GOLD WE HAVE THE FOLLOWING:  457,315 TOTAL OI CONTRACTS X 100 OZ PER CONTRACT = 45.73 MILLION OZ/32,150 OZ PER TONNE =  1409 TONNES

 

THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST REPRESENTS 1409/2200 OR 64.04% OF ANNUAL GLOBAL PRODUCTION OF GOLD.

 
 

Trading Volumes on the COMEX GOLD TODAY:164,411 contracts// volume  poor/   //

CONFIRMED COMEX VOL. FOR YESTERDAY:  218,864 contracts//  volume:  poor// //most of our traders have left for London

 

APRIL 1 /2021

 
INITIAL STANDINGS FOR APRIL COMEX GOLD
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gold Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oz nil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz
 
 
2055.04 oz
 
Manfra
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Deposits to the Dealer Inventory in oz        oz//                                                                        

Brinks 195.03 oz

Deposit to the Customer Inventory, in oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
nil
oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
No of oz served (contracts) today
3,193  notice(s)
319,300 OZ
(9.931 TONNES
 
No of oz to be served (notices)
 5150contracts
512,300oz)
 
16.01 TONNES
 
 
 
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month
20,061 notices
2,006,100 OZ
62.398 TONNES
 
 
Total accumulative withdrawals of gold from the Dealers inventory this month NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of gold from the Customer inventory this month xxx oz
 

We had 1 deposit into the dealer

i) one deposit into the dealer Brinks
195.03 oz
 
 
 
total deposit:  195.03   oz
 
 
 

total dealer withdrawals: nil oz

we had 0 deposits into the customer account
 
 
 
TOTA CUSTOMER DEPOSITS: nil oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
We had 1 withdrawdrawal
 
 
i) out of Manfra:  2055.04 oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
total withdrawals:  2055.04 oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

We had 1  kilobar transactions (1 out of 3 transactions)

ADJUSTMENTS  1:  dealer to customer

Out of Brinks:64,719.963oz  (2013 kilobars)

 

 
 

The front month of APRIL registered a total of 8343 CONTRACTS for a loss of 16,720 contracts.  We had a huge 16,868 notices filed on first day notice, so right off the bat we gained 148 contracts or an additional 14800 oz will stand for gold in this very active delivery month of April./

 

 
 
 
 

MAY LOST 183 CONTRACTS TO STAND AT 1587

JUNE GAINED 5735 CONTRACTS UP TO 374,307

We had 3,193 notice(s) filed today for 319,300 oz

FOR THE APRIL 2021 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 3193  contract(s) of which 6  notices were stopped (received) by j.P. Morgan dealer and 1913 notice(s) was (were) stopped/ Received) by J.P.Morgan//customer account and 0 notices received (stopped) by the squid  (Goldman Sachs)

To calculate the INITIAL total number of gold ounces standing for the APRIL /2021. contract month, we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (20,061) x 100 oz , to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of  (APRIL:  8343 CONTRACTS ) minus the number of notices served upon today 3193 x 100 oz per contract) equals 2,521,100 OZ OR 78.411 TONNES) the number of ounces standing in this  active month of MAR

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

No of notices filed so far 20,061 x 100 oz  + (8343 OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (3,193} x 100 oz which equals 2,521,100 oz standing OR 78.411 TONNES in this  active delivery month of APRIL. This is a HUGE/ATMOSPHERIC amount standing for GOLD IN APRIL, A GENERALLY STRONG ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH. THE TONNAGE AT THE COMEX WOULD HAVE BEEN 20 TONNES HIGHER IF THEY DID NOT PAY OFF THE EFP’S NOT TO TAKE DELIVERY AT THE COMEX

 

WE GAINED A STRONG 148 CONTRACTS OR AN ADDITIONAL 14,800 OZ WILL STAND FOR GOLD ON THIS SIDE OF THE POND.

 WHAT IS CLEAR IS THIS: NOBODY LEFT THE GOLD ARENA AS THE LOSS IN OI WAS DUE THE FINAL SPREADER LIQUIDATION AND SHORT COVERING BY OUR BANKER FRIENDS..

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

NEW PLEDGED GOLD:

464,420.335, oz NOW PLEDGED  march 5/2021/HSBC  13.626 TONNES

351,292.365 PLEDGED  MANFRA 10.92 TONNES

312,798.505 oz  JPM  9.72 TONNES

1,083,680.877 oz pledged June 12/2020 Brinks/33.706 TONNES

94,500.934 oz Pledged August 21/regular account 2.93 tonnes JPMORGAN

6,308.08 oz International Delaware:  .196 tonnes

192.906 oz Malca

total pledged gold:  2,313,193.997 oz                                     71.95 tonnes

 

SURPRISINGLY WE HAVE BEEN WITNESSING NO REAL PHYSICAL GOLD ENTERING THE COMEX VAULTS FOR THE PAST YEAR!! ..ONLY PHONY KILOBAR ENTRIES…. WE HAVE 484.92 TONNES OF REGISTERED GOLD WHICH CAN SETTLE UPON LONGS i.e. 78.416 tonnes

CALCULATION OF REGISTERED THAT CAN BE SETTLED UPON:

total registered or dealer  17,903,537.230 oz or 556.87 tonnes
 
 
total weight of pledged:  2,313,193.997 oz or 71.95 tonnes
 
 
thus:
 
registered gold that can be used to settle upon: 15,590,344.0 (484,92 tonnes) 
 
 
 
 
true registered gold  (total registered – pledged tonnes  15,590,344.0 (484.92 tonnes)
 
total eligible gold: 19,133,725.906 oz   (595.139 tonnes)
 
 
total registered, pledged  and eligible (customer) gold 37,039,263.136 oz or 1,152.01 tonnes (INCLUDES 4 GC GOLD)
 
 

total 4 GC gold:   126.34 tonnes

total gold net of 4 GC:  1025.67 tonnes

A  net total of 2.36 tonnes of gold “enters” the COMEX today.

end

I have compiled  data with respect to registered (or dealer) gold taken on first day notice for each of the past 24 months

The data begins on first day notice for the May month taken on the last day of July 2018. and it continues to present day.

I then took, how many deliveries were recorded by the CME for each and every month.  I also included for reference the price of gold on first day notice.

The first graph is a logarithmic  graph and the second graph, linear.

You can see the huge explosion of registered gold at the comex along with deliveries.

 
 
THE DATA AND GRAPHS:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
END

 

 
 
APRIL 1/2021

And now for the wild silver comex results

 
 

And now for the wild silver comex results

INITIAL STANDING FOR SILVER/APRIL

APRIL. SILVER COMEX CONTRACT MONTH//INITIAL STANDING

Silver Ounces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory NIL oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory
1,241,432.240 oz
 
 
CNT
Delaware
Manfra
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Deposits to the Dealer Inventory
10,023.800
 
oz
 
Delaware
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Deposits to the Customer Inventory
383m963,88 oz
 
JPMorgan
 
 
 
whatever enters the comex faults
leaves
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
No of oz served today (contracts)
657
 
CONTRACT(S)
(3,285,000 OZ)
 
No of oz to be served (notices)
488 contracts
 2,440,000 oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts)  2350 contracts

 

11,750,000 oz)

Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Dealers inventory this month NIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Customer inventory this month
 
We had 1 deposit into the dealer
 
i) Into Brinks:  10,023.800 oz
 
 

total dealer deposits: 10,023.800        oz

i) We had 0 dealer withdrawal

total dealer withdrawals: nil oz

we had  1 deposit into the customer account (ELIGIBLE ACCOUNT)

i) Into JPmorgan:  583,963.880 oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

JPMorgan now has 189.173 million oz of  total silver inventory or 51.22% of all official comex silver. (189.173 million/369.509 million

total customer deposits today: 583,963.880   oz

we had 3 withdrawals:

 
 
i) out of CNT:  1,214,233.880
ii) Out of Delaware:  6947.160 oz
iii) Out of Manfra  20,251.200 oz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

total withdrawals 1,241,432.240   oz

We had 1 adjustments:

HSBC: 40,444.520 dealer to customer

 

 

Total dealer(registered) silver: 126.814-million oz

total registered and eligible silver:  369.509 million oz

a net 0.366 million oz leaves the comex silver vaults.

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

The month of April saw 1145 contracts standing for delivery for a loss of 1768 contracts.  We had 1693 contracts served upon yesterday, so we lost  75 contracts or 375,000 oz will not stand for delivery over here as they try their luck over in London.  They will receive a hearty fiat bonus for not taking delivery here.
 
 

May LOST A VERY SMALL 2806 contracts to stand at  116,902 contracts. May is the next active month and it seems the cavalry are showing up for physical silver as well. Thus we have April, a non active month having an initial 14.565 million oz stand and May with open interest refusing to buckle. 

 

To give you an idea of the strength of the May contract, let us compare the open interest remaining today vs last year. At this same time, we had 78,659 oi contracts still outstanding on the May 2020.  This year:  116,902  still outstanding!!.

 

IT LOOKS LIKE WE HAVE OUR WHALE STANDING FOR SILVER METAL.  ERIC SPROTT’S FUND HAS NOTIFIED THE SEC THAT THEY ARE DOING A SHELF OFFERING OF $2 BILLION FOR SPROTT SILVER PHYSICAL FUNDS  (PSLV). IS ERIC TAKING ON THE CROOKS BY STANDING FOR METAL IN APRIL AND MAY?

 

The total number of notices filed today for APRIL 2021. contract month represented by 657 contract(s) FOR  3,285,000 oz

To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in APRIL. we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at  2350 x 5,000 oz = 11,750,000 oz to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of APRIL (1145) and the number of notices served upon today 657 x (5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

Thus the April standings for silver for the APRIL/2021 contract month: 2350 (notices served so far) x 5000 oz + OI for front month of APRIL 1145- number of notices served upon today (657) x 5000 oz of silver standing for the Jan contract month .equals 14,190,000 oz. ..VERY STRONG FOR A NON ACTIVE APRIL MONTH. 

 

TODAY’S ESTIMATED SILVER VOLUME 65,371 CONTRACTS // volume extremely poor// volumes falling off a cliff// very 

 

FOR YESTERDAY  70,646  ,CONFIRMED VOLUME/poor

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

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

end

NPV for Sprott

1. Sprott silver fund (PSLV): NAV  RISES TO -0.11% (APRIL; 1/2021)

2. Sprott gold fund (PHYS): premium to NAV FALLS TO –2.02% to NAV:   (APRIL 1/2021 )

Note: /Sprott physical gold trust is back into NEGATIVE/0.11%(APRIL1/2021)

(courtesy Sprott/GATA

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

NAV 18.40 TRADING 17.69//NEGATIVE 3.87

END

And now the Gold inventory at the GLD/(this vehicle is a fraud as there is no gold behind them!)

APRIL 1/WITH GOLD UP $13.00 TODAY:  NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1037.50 TONNES

MARCH 31/WITH GOLD UP $28.80 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1037.50 TONNES

MARCH 30/WITH GOLD DOWN $28.20 TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD… A DEPOSIT OF .88 TONNES//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1037.50TONNES

MARCH 29/WITH GOLD DOWN $20.00 TODAY//A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 6.41 TONNES FROM THE GLD..//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1036.62 TONNES

MARCH 26/WITH GOLD UP $7.00 TODAY// NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 1043.03 TONNES

MARCH//25: WITH GOLD DOWN $7.75 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 2.33 TONNES//GOLD REST AT 1043.03 TONNES

MARCH 24//WITH GOLD UP $7.75 TODAY://A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 6.42 TONNES OF GOLD: THIS GOLD IS BEING RETURNED TO THE BANK OF ENGLAND ON A PHONY LEASE SCAM//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1045.36 TONNES.

MARCH 23/WITH GOLD DOWN $12.65 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1051.78 TONNES

MARCH 22/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.90 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 3.5 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1051.78 TONNES

MARCH 19/WITH GOLD UP $8.60 , NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 1048.28 TONNES

MARCH 18/WITH GOLD UP $5.40 TODAY, A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 2.04 TONNES FROM THE GLD.//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1048.28 TONNES

MARCH 17/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.65 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 1050.32 TONNES

MARCH 16/WITH GOLD UP $2.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.75 MILLION OZ FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1050.32 TONNES

MARCH 15/WITH GOLD UP $8.85 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.25 TONNES OF GOLD FORM THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1052.07 TONNES

MARCH 12/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.25 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A REMOVAL OF 4.96 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1055.27 TONNES

MARCH 11/WITH GOLD UP $1.25 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: ANOTHER WITHDRAWAL OF 1.75 TONNES FROM THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1060.23 TONNES

MARCH 10/WITH GOLD UP $4.70 TODAY: ANOTHER HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.46 TONNES FROM THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 1061.98 TONNES

MARCH 9/WITH GOLD UP $37.40 TODAY: ANOTHER HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: ANOTHER WITHDRAWAL OF 5.82 TONNES FORM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1063.44 TONNES

MARCH 8/WITH GOLD  DOWN $21.00  TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/: A WITHDRAWAL OF 9.04 TONNES FROM THE GLD/INVENTORY RESTS AT 1069.26 TONNES

MARCH 5/WITH GOLD DOWN $15.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A HUGE WITHDRAWAL OF 4.08 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1078.30 TONNES

MARCH 4/WITH GOLD DOWN $7.60 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 4.74 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1082.38 TONNES

MARCH 3/WITH GOLD DOWN $17.70 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/: A PAPER DEPOSIT OF 2.62 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1087.12 TONNES

MARCH 2/WITH GOLD UP $9.40 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WHOPPING WITHDRAWAL OF 9.04 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1084.50 TONNES

MARCH 1/WITH GOLD DOWN $5.65 DOLLARS; A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 6.7 TONNES FROM THE GLD//.INVENTORY RESTS AT 1093.54 TONNES.

FEB 26/WITH GOLD DOWN $46.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/: A WITHDRAWAL OF 6.08 TONNES FROM THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1100.24 TONNES//

FEB 25/ WITH GOLD DOWN $20.65 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 4.08 TONNES FROM THE GLD///INVENTORY REST AT 1106.36 TONNES

FEB 24/WITH GOLD DOWN $7.30 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY: A WITHDRAWAL OF 4.96 TONNES FROM THE GLD// RESTS AT 1110.44 TONNES

FEB 23/WITH GOLD DOWN $2.45 TODAY: A MONSTROUS CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 12.54 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1115.40 TONNES

FEB 22/WITH GOLD UP $30.00 TODAY: STRANGE!! A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 5.25 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1127.64 TONNES

FEB 19/WITH GOLD UP $2.00 TODAY; NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1132.89 TONNES

FEB 18//WITH GOLD UP $2.60 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.79 TONNES FROM THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1132.89 TONNES

FEB 17/WITH GOLD DOWN $27.35 TODAY; A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD A WITHDRAWAL OF 5.54 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1136.68 TONNES

FEB 16/WITH GOLD DOWN $23.40 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORYRESTS AT 1142.20 TONNES

FEB 12/WITH GOLD DOWN $3.40 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.38 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1142.20 TONNES

FEB 11/WITH GOLD DOWN $15.35 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/I: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.74 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1146.60 TONNES

FEB 10/WITH GOLD UP $5.30 TODAY: ANOTHER HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 4.09 TONNES FROM THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1148.34 TONNES

FEB 9/WITH GOLD UP $4.00 TODAY; A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//: A WITHDRAWAL OF 4.08 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1152.43 TONNES.

FEB 8/WITH GOLD UP $20.80 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.33 TONNES FROM THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1156.51 TONNES

 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Inventory rests tonight at:

 

APRIL 1 / GLD INVENTORY 1037.50 tonnes

LAST;  1031 TRADING DAYS:   +103.69 TONNES HAVE BEEN ADDED THE GLD

LAST 931 TRADING DAYS// +  288.17TONNES  HAVE NOW  BEEN ADDED INTO  THE GLD INVENTORY

end

Now the SLV Inventory/(this vehicle is a fraud as there is no physical metal behind them!)

APRIL 1.WITH SILVER UP 48 CENTS TODAY; A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.898 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 575.124 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 31/WITH SILVER UP 37 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 579.022 MILLION OZ

MARCH 30/WITH SILVER DOWN 62 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/: A DEPOSIT OF 417,000 OZ INTO THE SLV/INVENTORY REST AT 579.022 MILLION OZ..

MARCH 29/WITH SILVER DOWN 34 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 578.605 MILLION OZ.

MARCH 26/WITH SILVER UP 5 CENTS TODAY: TWO HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 2.042 MILLION OZ AT 3 PM AND ANOTHER AT 5.20 PM:  1.949 MILLION OZ /INVENTORY RESTS AT 578.605 MILLION OZ

MARCH 25/WITH SILVER DOWN 15 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV; A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.253 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 582.596 MILLION OZ

MARCH 24//WITH SILVER UP 1 CENT TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 585.846 MILLION OZ./

MARCH 23/WITH SILVER DOWN 55 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 585.846 MILLION OZ/

MARCH 22/WITH SILVER DOWN 50 CENTS TODAY,TWO HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.486 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLVAT 3 PM AND ANOTHER 2.599 MILLION OZ WITHRAWWAL AT 5:20 ////INVENTORY RESTS AT 585.846 MILLION OZ/ (TOTAL SILVER LEAVING 4.085 MILLION OZ)

MARCH 19/WITH SILVER DOWN 8 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY REST AT 589.931 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 18/WITH SILVER UP 28 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV; AT 3 PM: A WITHDRAWAL OF 2.507 MILLION OZ//INVENTORY RESTS AT 589.931 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 17/WITH SILVER UP 5 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 592.438 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 16/WITH SILVER DOWN 25 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 592.438 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 15/WITH SILVER UP 35 CENTS TODAY: NO  CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 592.438 MILLION OZ///

MARCH 12/WITH SILVER DOWN 23 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 592.438 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 11/WITH SILVER DOWN ONE CENT TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 592.438 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 10/WITH SILVER DOWN 3 CENTS TODAY; ANOTHER HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 928,000 OZ FROM THE SLV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 592.438 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 9/WITH SILVER UP 91 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 593.366  MILLION OZ///

MARCH 8/WITH SILVER DOWN ONE CENT TODAY; A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.25 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 593.366 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 5/WITH SILVER DOWN 31 CENTS TODAY: TWO HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 6.501 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV AT 3 PM AND ANOTHER 3.90 MILION OZ AT 5.20..: TOTAL LOSSS 10.4 MILLLLION OZ////INVENTORY RESTS AT 596.616 MILLION OZ

MARCH 4/WITH SILVER DOWN 76 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 1.486 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 609.017 MILLION OZ

MARCH 3/WITH SILVER DOWN 58 CENTS TODAY; A HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.774 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 605.531 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 2//WITH SILVER UP 19 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 609.305 MILLION OZ

MARCH 1.WITH SILVER UP 26 CENTS TODAY:A HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 6.593 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV..//INVENTORY RESTS AT 609.305 MILLION OZ.

FEB 26/WITH SILVER DOWN  $1.17 TODAY: TWO HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.857 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV AT 3 PM//AND ANOTHER 1.858 MILLION OZ AT 5.20 EST//INVENTORY RESTS AT 615.898 MILLION OZ//

FEB 25/WITH SILVER DOWN 21 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/INVENTORY RESTS AT 619.613 MILLION OZ//

FEB 24/WITH SILVER UP 19 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORIES AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 619.613 MILLION OZ

FEB 23/WITH SILVER DOWN 34 CENTS TODAY: TWO ENTRIES I) HUGE CHANGE ISN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 127,000 OZ INTO THE SLV AND THEN A HUGE DEPOSIT OF 7.801 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV//////INVENTORY RESTS AT 619.613 MILLION OZ

FEB 22/WITH SILVER UP 74 CENTS TODAY: 2 HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 2.322 MILLION OZ AT 3 PM AND 6.873 MILLION OF AT 5 20 PM EST/INVENTORY RESTS AT 611.685 MILLION OZ/

FEB 19//WITH SILVER UP 15 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 621.007 MILLION OZ//

FEB 18/WITH SILVER DOWN 22 CENTS TODAY : TWO HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV ANOTHER WITHDRAWAL OF 1.858 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV AN ANOTHER WITHDRAWAL 5.758 MILLION OZ// //INVENTORY RESTS AT 621.007 MILLION OZ//

FEB 17/WITH SILVER UP  1 CENT TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV// A DEPOSIT OF 83,000 OZ INTO THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 628.623 MILLION OZ//

FEB 16/WITH SILVER DOWN 3 CENTS TODAY: A BIG CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV:ANOTHER WITHDRAWAL OF 2.044 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 628.530 MILLION OZ//

FEB 12/WITH SILVER UP 31 CENTS//A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 4.312 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 630.574 MILLION OZ.

FEB 11/WITH SILVER DOWN 4 CENTS TODAY; A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.858 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 634.986 MILLION OZ//

FEB 10/WITH SILVER DOWN 44 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 636.844 MILLION OZ//

FEB 9/WITH SILVER DOWN $0.19 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/: MASSIVE WITHDRAWAL OF 17.882 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 636.844 MILLION OZ//

FEB 8/WITH SILVER UP $0.53 TODAY: A HUGE PAPER WITHDRAWAL OF 4.451 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV// //INVENTORY RESTS AT 654.726 MILLION OZ//

XXXXXXXXXXXXXX

SLV INVENTORY RESTS TONIGHT AT

APRIL 1/2021
575.124 MILLION OZ

 
 

PHYSICAL GOLD/SILVER STORIES
i)LAWRIE WILLIAMS:

 

 

OR

EGON VON GREYERZ// none today

OR

Peter Schiff..

end

ii) Important gold commentaries courtesy of GATA/Chris Powell

The following is extremely important: New figures released show that the dollar’s share of global reserves have fallen to around 59%, the lowest in 25 years.  The biggest gainers: the Chinese.

(BloombergNews)

Dollar’s share of global reserves sinks to lowest since 1995

 

 

 Section: Daily Dispatches

 

By Susanne Barton and Daniela Sirtori-Cortina
Bloomberg News
Wednesday, March 31, 2021

The dollar’s share of global currency reserves dropped in the fourth quarter to around 59%, the lowest in 25 years, according to International Monetary Fund data.

The slide came in a quarter when a gauge of the greenback fell the most since 2010, and amid questions about how long the dollar can maintain its status as the pre-eminent reserve currency. 

… 

The Chinese renminbi is transforming into a force to be reckoned with in currency markets, with more yuan changing hands than ever before in London, the world’s leading foreign-exchange center. …

… For the remainder of the report:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-03-31/dollar-s-share-of-glo…

end

iii) Other physical stories:

Dear Colleagues of the Silver Market,
 
The Perth Mint is sinking in a public relations disaster. I can confirm from direct feedback from the Australian market that the Perth Mint and Richard Hayes have done nothing to calm the concerns about their synthetic products.
 
Today, now is 2:08am on Good Friday in Australia and thus the bullion market will be closed until Tuesday next week. I can confirm from direct feedback I have received that Australian silver investors (and to a lesser extent gold) in droves are dumping synthetic products which are offered by the major Australian providers – i.e. the Perth Mint and ABC Bullion. Last week and this week (only 4 days of trading this week – Monday to Thursday) have been amazing.
 
Industry insiders have been stunned with the numbers of clients demanding physical silver (either allocated storage or taking direct receipt). What we are witnessing is unparalleled in the history of the Australian market.
 
By my latest accounting from feedback that I have received since starting my campaign against synthetic silver – more than 20 tonnes of physical silver have been snapped up in both Australia and in North America. I expect this to continue into next week.
 
 
Importantly, the interviews by Richard Hayes, the CEO of the Perth Mint have done nothing to reassure Australian investors. Rather, Hayes’ dismissal interview performances have caused Australians to intensify their efforts to dump Perth Mint unallocated and pool allocated positions.
 
In the past few hours, the Perth Mint have released a 63 second video about their silver production. The video is absolutely bizarre and does nothing to address the concerns of their customers and of the broader market. I would encourage everyone to look at the video which has been released on YouTube. I have issued a tweet about it.
 
 

yours faithfully,

 

John Adams

Principal Economic Analyst
Adams Economics
 

Your early THURSDAY morning currency, Asian stock market results,  important USA/Asian currency crosses, gold/silver pricing overnight along with the price of oil Major stories overnight/7 AM EST

i) Chinese yuan vs USA dollar/CLOSED DOWN at 6.5735 /

//OFFSHORE YUAN:  6.5812   /shanghai bourse CLOSED UP 24.42 pts or 0.71%

HANG SANG CLOSED UP 560.39 pts or 1.97%

2. Nikkei closed UP 210.07 pts or 0.72%

3. Europe stocks OPENED ALL GREEN EXCEPT SPAIN/

USA dollar index DOWN TO 93.19/Euro RISES TO 1.1737

3b Japan 10 year bond yield: RISES TO. +.12/ !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 110.78/ 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//CARRY TRADERS GETTING KILLED

3c Nikkei now JUST ABOVE 17,000

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

3e WTI:: 59.49 and Brent: 62.95

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

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

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

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

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund FALLS TO -.31%/Italian 10 yr bond yield DOWN to 0.64% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD DOWN TO 0.31%…ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD/GERMAN BUND: 0.95: DANGEROUS FOR THE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM

3j Greek 10 year bond yield FALLS TO : 0.84

3k Gold at $1717.00 silver at: 24.42   7 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $30.00

3l USA vs Russian rouble; (Russian rouble DOWN 48/100 in roubles/dollar) 76.13

3m oil into the 59 dollar handle for WTI and 62 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 110.78 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 .9452 as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF is 1.1098 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 NEGATIVE territory with the 10 year FALLING to 0.31%

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 1.721% early this morning. Thirty year rate at 2.377%

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

6.  TURKISH LIRA:  UP  TO 8.16..

S&P Futures Hit All Time High To Start The New Quarter

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 07:55 AM

Now that the quarter-end rebalance malarkey is behind us, it’s full steam ahead into the new quarter and S&P futures hit a new all time high overnight rising as high as 3,984 before stabilizing up 0.3%, breaching Wednesday’s best levels as signs of faster job creation in the US fueled optimism about the global recovery (although all that will change tomorrow if the NFP whisper of 1.8MM jobs is remotely accurate). Oil climbed above $60 per barrel before a meeting of OPEC+ on extending production cuts.

At 7:30 a.m. ET, Dow E-minis were up 12 points, or 0.04%, S&P 500 E-minis were up 12 points, or 0.30%. Nasdaq futures rose as much as 1.1%, as “high flying” FAAMG stocks added between 0.6% and 1.1% after underperforming last month on concerns over elevated valuations. Some notable premarket movers:

  • Micron rose 4.3% after the chipmaker forecast fiscal third-quarter revenue above Wall Street estimates due to higher demand for memory chips, thanks to 5G smartphones and artificial intelligence software.
  • Western Digital Corp. gained 1.1% after a report it and Micron were exploring a potential deal for Japan’s Kioxia Holdings Corp.
  • US-listed shares of rival Taiwan Semiconductor also added 2.3% on its plan to invest $100 billion over the next three years to meet the rising chip demand.
  • Uber Technologies Inc rose nearly 2% after Jefferies began coverage on the ride-hailing company’s shares with “buy” and said the company could be profitable soon.
  • Johnson & Johnson slipped 1.1% premarket after the drugmaker said it had found a problem with a batch of the drug substance for its COVID-19 vaccine being produced by Emergent Biosolutions.
  • Microsoft Corp. climbed 1.2% in premarket as the company’s multibillion-dollar deal to build customized versions of its HoloLens goggles for the U.S. Army moved forward.

On Wednesday, the S&P 500 hit a new intraday high, but stopped just shy of touching 4,000 points for the first time after President Joe Biden’s unveiled a $2.25 trillion plan to rebuild the world’s largest economy. Biden’s “American Jobs Plan” would put corporate America on the hook for the tab as the government creates millions of jobs building infrastructure, such as roads, tackles climate change and boosts human services like care for the elderly.

“There is still some room for recovery in stocks that will benefit from the economic recovery and the reopening trade,” Ania Aldrich, investment principal at Cambiar Investors LLC, said on Bloomberg TV. “There’s still a lot of growth that has to come and that’s not necessarily reflected in earnings yet.”

With the Archegos fiasco behind us, investors remain focused on inflation risk as central banks reassert their commitment to low interest rates. Traders for now are looking past worsening virus trends, such as lockdowns in France and Canada’s Ontario province.

European equities also traded near session highs, with the Euro Stoxx 600 rising 0.4%, and although it traded higher earlier in the session,  it was headed for the longest streak of weekly gains this year; the  FTSE outperformed at the margin. Real estate, tech and retailers lead gains; autos are the sole sector in the red.  European airline stocks rose (IAG +4.3%, TUI +3.5%, Ryanair +2.6%, Lufthansa +2.5%), lifting the Stoxx 600 travel and leisure subgroup higher, amid positive newsflow around prospects for a travel recovery this year. Goodbody analysts note an interview with Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary on Good Morning Britain on Wednesday, with O’Leary predicting restrictions being removed on flights to Spain, Portugal and Greece this year given the rising vaccination rates. Countries such as Malta, Turkey and Thailand are keen to welcome British tourists, analysts including Mark Simpson write in a note Thursday.

On the Stoxx 600, 447 members were up, 103 down and 50 unchanged. Here are some of the biggest European movers today:

  • Prosus shares jump as much as 5.8% after Tencent closed higher. Additionally, the Stoxx Europe 600 Technology Index gains as much as 1.7% after chip stocks rallied, boosted by Micron’s bullish forecast and by TSMC’s spending plans.
  • Quilter shares rise as much as 4.4% after the U.K. wealth manager sold its international unit to Utmost for GBP483m. RBC said the deal price is “fair,” yet also at a discount to the rest of the group.
  • Delivery Hero shares advance as much as 4.9% as stocks that benefited from the pandemic rose, with makers of home- office equipment, food-delivery firms and e-commerce stocks gaining as France and Italy prepare to extend curbs to contain the virus.
  • Vinci shares jump as much as 3.2% after signing agreement to buy ACS’s energy business for about EU4.9 billion in cash, according to statement. The acquisition will be financed through Vinci’s available cash and credit lines.
  • Atos shares plunge as much as 22%, the biggest one-day drop since Oct. 2018, after the IT services firm said

Earlier in the session, an index of Asia-Pacific shares rose for the first time in three days, with Hong Kong leading gains, after data signaled a pick-up in regional manufacturing. The emerging-market equity benchmark rebounded from Wednesday’s losses. Asian stocks climbed after Joe Biden announced a $2.25 trillion infrastructure plan and amid several big news items in the semiconductor industry. Tech stocks were the biggest boost to the MSCI Asia Pacific Index as chip giant TSMC announced plans to spend $100 billion over the next three years to expand capacity. Another lift came from a Dow Jones report that Micron and Western Digital are each exploring potential deals for Kioxia that could value the Japanese memory maker at around $30 billion. Japanese shares gained after the Tankan survey showed the nation’s large manufacturers have turned optimistic for the first time since the fall of 2019. South Korean stocks climbed following a report that the nation’s exports rose the most in more than two years on strong global demand. Hong Kong stocks advanced even as trading in more than 50 companies was halted as a number of firms failed to report earnings in time. Vietnam’s benchmark notched the region’s biggest advance Thursday, hitting a record high. The Philippine market was closed for a holiday, and a number of markets will be shut on Friday

The closely watching Chinese market – where fears of policy tightening has kept a lid on stock gains – advanced on Thursday, starting the month in the green after posting the first quarterly slump in a year. The CSI 300 Index closed 1.2% higher, the most this week, with consumer discretionary and health care firms leading gains. The gauge’s 10-day historical volatility fell to the lowest in six weeks, which coincides with the starting point for the recent selloff. Various benchmarks on the mainland also advanced, though moves remained largely range bound. Turnover in Shanghai and Shenzhen dropped to nearly 628 billion yuan, the lowest in five months. Meanwhile, trading in more than 50 Hong Kong-listed companies was suspended after a number of firms failed to report earnings ahead of the March 31 deadline. The Hang Seng Index was up 1.5% as of 3:09 p.m. local time. The Shanghai Composite advanced 0.7% while the tech-heavy ChiNext rose 2.1%

Back in the US and its holiday-shortened week, Bloomberg notes that traders were jockeying for position before the Easter weekend – US stock markets are closed on Good Friday – after ADP’s March data showed U.S. private employers hired the most workers in six months, leaving a risk that tomorrow’s NFP print will be a blowout number that could spike reflation fears again. Biden’s ambitious plan to rebuild U.S. infrastructure has added to the growth outlook, even though Republican opposition to the plan raises questions about how much can actually be delivered.

In rates, Treasuries were mixed with the curve flatter as long end holds most of its Asia-session gains, which were led by a broader advance in regional debt markets. 10Y bonds ground higher with longer-dated Treasury yields falling as investors weighed the prospects of President Joe Biden winning approval for his $2.25 trillion stimulus plan. Gilts led a modest bull flattening move, richening ~3.5bps at the long end. Peripheral spreads tighten to core slightly.

In FX, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index gave up an Asia-session gain and the dollar traded unchanged versus G10 peers, with most moves contained in tight ranges; the euro and Scandinavian currencies erased Asia-session losses in early European hours. AUD was the worst performer in G-10, extending Asia’s losses in early London trade before finding support near 0.7532. EUR/USD and cable fade a small pop higher to trade flat. The Turkish lira jumped for a second day, paring some of its world-leading losses since a shuffle in the central bank’s leadership. In China, the yuan slumped to a four-month low after a gauge of manufacturing activity in March fell.

In commodities, crude futures pared earlier gains in London and New York ahead of the OPEC+ meeting set to begin shortly. Brent was up just 0.1% having earlier climbed 2.4%, while WTI traded up 0.2% after earlier climbing as much as 2.5%. Spot gold drifted through Wednesday’s best levels trading near $1,715/oz. Most base metals are on the back foot: LME zinc and copper underperform, aluminum holds in the green

Official data is likely to show that the number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits slipped last week. It comes ahead of the closely-watched monthly jobs report on Friday that could show U.S. economy added 647,000 jobs last month after February’s 379,000 rise.

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures up 0.3% to 3,981.00
  • SXXP Index up 0.5% to 431.89
  • German 10Y yield little changed at -0.30%
  • Euro little changed at $1.1741
  • MXAP up 0.9% to 205.34
  • MXAPJ up 1.2% to 686.01
  • Nikkei up 0.7% to 29,388.87
  • Topix up 0.2% to 1,957.64
  • Hang Seng Index up 2.0% to 28,938.74
  • Shanghai Composite up 0.7% to 3,466.33
  • Sensex up 0.7% to 49,872.78
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 0.6% to 6,828.69
  • Kospi up 0.8% to 3,087.40
  • Brent futures up 1.7% to $63.84/bbl
  • Gold spot up 0.7% to $1,719.06
  • U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 93.15

Top Overnight News from Bloomberg

  • Chinese sovereign debt is due to face a number of challenges in the second quarter. On top of a longer phase-in period for FTSE Russell’s World Government Bond Index, a surge in supply of local government securities and the narrowing yield premium over U.S. Treasuries are also threatening to reduce China’s appeal
  • The Scottish government is exploring raising funds on capital markets for the first time, ahead of elections that could trigger a renewed standoff with the U.K. over independence
  • The U.K.’s efforts to disentangle itself from sterling Libor by year-end just went up a gear. Starting Thursday, firms should stop issuing new loans, bonds and securitizations tied to the discredited benchmark, according to the Bank of England. It’s ramped up the pressure in recent days, warning bankers that continued use is a risk for business and could cost them their bonuses
  • The ECB will still have more work to do to boost inflation after the pandemic as increased price pressures this year will not be sustained, chief economist Philip Lane wrote in a blog post
  • A bonanza of European debt sales so far this year may be as good as it gets for the market as recovery from the pandemic starts to put the brakes on issuance

A quick look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk

Asian equity markets traded positively as participants reflected on the busy slate of data releases and US President Biden’s announcement of his two-part spending proposal consisting of the American Jobs Plan and American Family Plan whereby he only provided details of the former which will modernize, repair and upgrade the transportation network, boost the US edge on chips and which will create millions of jobs. Furthermore, President Biden stated that they will make sure to buy American with contracts only to be awarded to US firms and that the capital investment is to be around USD 2tln with spending spread over 8 years, while he also suggested increasing the corporate tax rate to 28% and that they will dramatically raise IRS tax compliance. ASX 200 (+0.6%) was kept afloat with gold miners underpinned after the recent rebound in the precious metal and with tech inspired by outperformance of the sector stateside, although financials were indecisive with CBA and Macquarie pressured from disciplinary actions by regulatory agencies and AMP was boosted after it named ANZ Bank’s Deputy CEO as its next chief. Nikkei 225 (+0.7%) and KOSPI (+0.9%) benefitted from encouraging data including a strong BoJ Tankan report which showed large manufacturers sentiment index at its highest since September 2019 and large non-manufacturers sentiment at its best levels in a year, while South Korea cheered a continued surge in exports. Hang Seng (+2.0%) and Shanghai Comp. (+0.7%) conformed to the upbeat mood following reports that China’s cabinet is to further cut taxes for smaller companies and after China approved the long-planned mega-merger between state-owned SinoChem and ChemChina, although gains were capped following a miss on Chinese Caixin Manufacturing PMI data. Finally, 10yr JGBs were lower after the fluctuations in USTs and the BoJ announcement of its purchase intentions for April in which it upped the amount but lowered the frequency which would effectively result to a decline of total purchases from March, although improved results from the 10yr JGB auction helped pare some of the losses.

Top Asian News

  • Masayoshi Son’s ‘Money Guy’ Greensill Went From Hero to Zero
  • Vietnam Stocks Shoot Past Toughest Key Level to Hit Record High
  • Mizuho May Have $90 Million Exposure to Archegos, Nikkei Reports
  • Barclays Plans to Hire Several Private Bankers in Singapore

European equities (Eurostoxx 50 +0.2%) have seen a steady grind higher since the open as markets head towards the end of the holiday-shortened week. In terms of broader macro impulses, a bulk of the news cycle has centred around President Biden’s two-part spending proposal, consisting of the American Jobs Plan and American Family Plan. That said, little follow-through has been observed in Europe as many of the specifics of the release were announced during yesterday’s session. Closer to home, the narrative is somewhat less upbeat after French President Macron announced new measures, including a national lockdown, which will take place from Saturday and last for at least one month. Nonetheless, the CAC 40 (+0.3%) has still managed to eke out mild gains throughout trade, in-fitting with broader sentiment in the region. From a sectoral standpoint, they are broadly firmer with Technology names leading the charge higher. This can also be observed in the US with the e-mini Nasdaq outperforming US peers with gains of 0.9% as the US 10yr yield continues to retreat. Elsewhere, outperformers include Financial Services, Basic Resources and Retail with the latter aided by gains in Next (+2.3%) post-FY earnings. To the downside, Autos is the only sector in the red with Daimler (-2.1%) and Volkswagen (-1.3%) at the bottom of the DAX with market participants still bemused over the latter’s Voltswagen “April fools joke”. Atos (-14.2%) sit firmly at the foot of the Stoxx 600 after announcing that auditors found issues that prompted accounting errors at two of its US subsidiaries.

Top European News

  • U.K. Manufacturing Growth Reaches Decade High as Lockdown Eases
  • Atos Shares Drop the Most in Over Two Years on Accounting Errors
  • Commerzbank Loses Three More Board Members as Upheaval Deepens
  • Vinci Seals $5.8 Billion Deal to Bolster Renewable Construction

In FX, the Aussie is still underperforming, but some way off overnight lows vs the Greenback within a 0.7601-0.7532 range in wake of trade data revealing a 1% fall in exports due mainly to iron ore, though the partial recovery to 0.7550+ is mainly down to another pull-back in its US counterpart rather than anything else. However, retail sales were not quite as weak as forecast and some are touting a hawkish shift from the RBA next week given tangible evidence of a rapid recovery in the domestic economy via the labour market and booming building permits.

  • CHF/NZD/CAD – Also weaker vs their US adversary despite the DXY stalling ahead of yesterday’s high and recoiling into a tighter band between 93.338-122 compared to Wednesday’s 93.437-92.082 extremes. Moreover, the Franc is straddling 0.9450 even though the Swiss manufacturing PMI was considerably firmer than forecast in March to offset mixed CPI and weak retail sales for the prior month, while the Kiwi has not been able to take advantage of Aud/Nzd tailwinds to retest 0.7000. Elsewhere, the Loonie has lost post-Canadian GDP momentum ahead of building permits and the Markit PMI, albeit holding above 1.2600 with the aid of firmer oil prices, as BoC Governor Macklem expresses concern about an unsustainable house price bubble and resultant rising levels of household debt. Nevertheless, Usd/Cad may be capped by decent option expiry interest extending from 1.2600-10 (1.5 bn) through 1.2630-45 (1.2 bn) to 1.2600-75 (1.3 bn) in the event of a bullish reaction to any of the Canadian or US releases that also include Challenger layoffs, jobless claims, Markit’s final manufacturing PMI, construction spending and the ISM before Fed speakers in the form of Harker and Kaplan.
  • GBP/EUR/JPY – The Pound remains propped near 1.3800 vs the Dollar and 0.8500 against the Euro, but unable to breach either psychological barrier on the back of an upgrade in UK manufacturing PMI, and aside from the obvious swathe of bids in Eur/Gbp just under the current 2021 low, Eur/Usd resilience on the 1.1700 handle is also keeping Sterling at bay. Similarly, the Yen continues to repel offers into 111.00 and an upbeat Japanese Tankan survey may be helping alongside a strong 10 year JGB auction and some bull re-flattening across the US Treasury curve.
  • SCANDI/EM – Momentum and the pendulum is still swinging away from the Sek towards the Nok, as evident by Eur/Sek remaining elevated around 10.2500 following a considerably better than anticipated Swedish manufacturing PMI in contrast to Eur/Nok continuing to hover over 10.0000. Meanwhile, the Cnh has been ruffled by China’s Caixin manufacturing PMI falling short of expectations and slowing from the previous month, but the Try is paring more losses after a firmer Turkish manufacturing PMI and an extension of the reduction to withholding taxes for bank deposits through the end of May.

In commodities, WTI and Brent front month futures have opened the session on a firmer footing, but off initial highs, following on from Asia’s positive lead. Fundamental support for price action resides around the OPEC+ meeting, where expectations remain that OPEC+ will maintain its output cuts. Following the JMMC, alleged not to be very upbeat, Eurasia Group reported “the most likely outcome is no significant changes in production and any decisions on tapering will likely be delayed to the May meeting.” Moreover, this decision would come amid growing COVID infection rates, in some regions, hindering demand. As such, OPEC+ continuing the supply cuts has had less of an impact on the complexes’ price as usual, due to the growing concerns surrounding the economic outlook and the global recovery. The May WTI contract trades on a mid USD 60.00/bbl handle (vs low USD 59.26/bbl) whilst its Brent counterpart trades marginally north of USD 64.00/bbl (vs low USD 62.81/bbl). Spot gold and spot silver have both benefitted modestly from a pause in USD strength, with the former seeing more pronounced gains on the day and rebounding from its 3-week low while silver is more contained in comparison. At the time of writing, spot gold trades at USD 1,715/oz (vs low USD 1,706/oz) and silver trades just shy of USD 24.40/oz (vs low USD 24.26/oz). Onto base metals, LME copper is softer on the session and nearing 1-month lows after Caixin Manufacturing PMI fell short of expectations.

US Event Calendar

  • 7:30am: March Challenger Job Cuts YoY, prior -39.1%
  • 8:30am: March Initial Jobless Claims, est. 675,000, prior 684,000; Continuing Claims, est. 3.75m, prior 3.87m
  • 9:45am: March Markit US Manufacturing PMI, est. 59.2, prior 59.0
  • 10am: March ISM New Orders, prior 64.8;
  • ISM Employment, prior 54.4;
  • ISM Prices Paid, est. 83.5, prior 86.0;
  • ISM Manufacturing, est. 61.5, prior 60.8
  • 10am: Feb. Construction Spending MoM, est. -1.0%, prior 1.7%

DB’s Henry Allen concludes the overnight wrap

Yesterday marked a pretty eventful end to the first quarter, as not only did we get the announcement of Biden’s infrastructure package, but multiple European countries moved to toughen up restrictions as the continent has been forced to grapple with a rising 3rd wave of the virus. This led to a pretty divergent performance for equities on either side of the Atlantic, with the S&P 500 (+0.36%) climbing to just short of an all-time high and at one point hitting its highest ever intraday level of 3994, just shy of breaching the 4,000 mark for the first time. Over in Europe however, the STOXX 600 (-0.24%) fell back from its post-pandemic high the previous day, as the prospect of fresh restrictions risked dampening economic activity further. A large rally in technology shares drove much of the divergence as the NASDAQ rose +1.54% and the NYFANG index gained +1.65%, while US banks stocks (-1.00%) and their European counterparts (-1.22%) fell back even as rates rose.

Before we go into what happened yesterday, the start of the month means that we’ll shortly be releasing our latest performance review of financial assets for March and Q1. Risk assets were the winners in Q1, with equities, oil and HY credit mostly recording a positive performance. Conversely, safe havens had a less good time, with gold ending a run of 9 successive quarterly advances, and sovereign bonds also losing ground on the back of optimism over the economic recovery, as markets brought forward their expected timing for future rate hikes. See the full report out soon for more info.

Of course, one of the biggest stories of the quarter happened right at the beginning, as the Democrats won both of the Georgia Senate races that gave their party overall control of the chamber thanks to Vice President Harris’ casting vote. In turn, this paved the way for much bigger stimulus, and yesterday we heard the administration’s latest plans from President Biden, who outlined his “American Jobs Plan” that would see $2.25 trillion invested over the next eight years. The overall price tag breaks down into $620 billion for transportation and $650 billion for measures including clean water and high-speed broadband. The bill would earmark $580 billion for American manufacturing, including $180 billion in the biggest non-defence R&D program on record. Lastly there is an expected $400 billion toward care for the elderly and disabled. Unsurprisingly there was also emphasis on sustainability and the green economy, with money for modernising the electric grid, as well as building, preserving and retrofitting homes and commercial buildings.

In his speech, President Biden said the plan would “bring everybody along” and would “build our economy from the middle out.” And there was also a nod to foreign policy objectives, with the administration’s fact sheet noting how China was “investing aggressively in R&D” as it called for further investment by the United States, while President Biden said the “rest of the world is closing in and closing in fast.” This comes following reports that both Democratic and Republican Senators said they were discussing proposals to fund semiconductor research and better compete, though worries about overall costs remain. It is uncertain what parts would get tied into the “American Jobs Plan”, but Majority Leader Schumer plans to incorporate many China-related bills into one package that would go through a bipartisan committee later this month, according to Bloomberg reports. That would include $50 billion for semiconductor manufacturing and $50 billion for the National Science Foundation.

In terms of how it’s all being paid for, the plan included a number of changes to the corporate tax code, including an increase in the corporate tax rate to 28%, and a global minimum tax of 21%. The administration said that this would “be fully paid for within the next 15 years and reduce deficits in the years after.” President Biden said he would meet with Congressional Republicans on the proposal and would engage in “good faith negotiations” with lawmakers on a path forward. However, it’s still expected that there’ll be strong Republican opposition thanks to the tax increases, and Senate Minority Leader McConnell has already responded negatively, saying that “It’s called infrastructure, but inside the Trojan horse it’s going to be more borrowed money, and massive tax increases on all the productive parts of our economy.” In terms of timelines, multiple outlets said that House Speaker Pelosi told her caucus that her aim was to have the bill voted on in the House by July 4, which would allow it to be taken up by the Senate prior to the chamber’s month-long recess in August.

Overnight in Asia, markets have followed Wall Street’s lead with the Nikkei (+0.69%), Hang Seng (+1.13%), Shanghai Comp (+0.25%) and Kospi (+0.59%) all seeing gains, as a number of positive data releases were reported in the region this morning. Firstly, the BoJ’s Tankan survey showed that large Japanese manufacturers have turned optimistic for the first time in six quarters with businesses of all kinds saying that they plan to boost investment by the most in decades. Additionally, we have already seen the March manufacturing PMIs in Asia which mostly printed in expansionary territory. Japan’s final PMI came in at 52.7 (vs. 52.0 in flash) while the numbers from South Korea (at 55.3 vs. 55.3 last month) , Vietnam (53.6 vs. 51.6) and Indonesia (53.2 vs. 50.9) all remained in expansionary territory. China’s Caixin manufacturing PMI was relatively weaker however at 50.6 (vs. 50.9 last month and 51.4 expected). Outside of Asia, futures on the S&P 500 (+0.02%) are trading broadly flat but those on the Nasdaq (+0.26%) are pointing higher.

Back to yesterday now, and US Treasury yields rose against the backdrop of Biden’s announcement, with 10yr yields up +3.8bps at 1.740%, to their highest closing level in over a year, albeit still beneath the intraday high of 1.774% reached on Wednesday. Inflation expectations were responsible for the rise, and 10yr breakevens climbed +2.7bps to 2.37%, their highest level since 2013, whereas real yields saw a slight rise of +0.8bps. As with equities however, it was a different story for sovereign bonds in Europe, where yields on 10yr bunds (-0.5bps), OATs (-0.3bps) and BTPs (-1.2bps) all saw modest declines.

There were some pretty major developments regarding the pandemic yesterday, as governments across Europe moved to respond to a third wave of the virus. In France, President Macron announced a four-week nationwide lockdown of schools and businesses, while warning that “the virus is more contagious and deadlier” during the current wave. He called on residents to take extra effort, even as restrictions will be somewhat flexible over the holiday weekend. Meanwhile in Italy, the government extended their own national restrictions on movement and businesses, while also being one of the first countries to make the vaccine mandatory for healthcare workers. Finally it’s been reported by Canada’s CBC News that the Canadian province of Ontario would go into a 28-day lockdown from Saturday. On the topic of the vaccine, there was some bad news out of the US, where a manufacturing error affected 15 million doses of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. This is not expected to meaningfully affect US vaccination efforts according to reports, with the majority of the country still relying on Moderna’s and Pfizer’s jabs. Both of those companies met their first quarter targets of 100mn and 120mn shots respectively.

In more positive news though, a final-stage trial of the Pfizer vaccine in 12-15 year olds in the US found that it was 100% effective and saw robust antibody responses. The trial enrolled 2,260 children, and while there were 18 Covid cases among the placebo group, there were no cases in the vaccinated group. At the moment, the vaccine is only authorised among those 16 and older in the US and the EU, but Pfizer said they planned to submit the data to the FDA and EMA for authorisation as soon as possible.

Looking at yesterday’s data, the Euro Area flash CPI reading for March came in at +1.3% (vs. +1.4% expected), which is its highest rate in over a year. Core inflation unexpectedly fell back however, declining to +0.9% (vs. +1.1% expected). Meanwhile in the US ahead of tomorrow’s jobs report, the ADP’s report of private payrolls said that the US added +517k jobs in March (vs. +550k expected), which is the fastest pace since September. Other releases included German unemployment for March, which fell by -8k (vs. -3k expected), while data revisions in the UK showed the economy grew by +1.3% in Q4 (vs. +1.0% at previous estimate), and the overall 2020 contraction was revised to -9.8% (vs. -9.9% previously).

To the day ahead now, and the main highlight will be the manufacturing PMIs from around the world, as well as the ISM manufacturing reading from the US. Other data releases include German retail sales for February, and the US will be releasing their weekly initial jobless claims and February’s construction spending. From central banks, Philadelphia Fed President Harker will be speaking, while the OPEC+ group will be discussing oil production.

end

3A/ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)THURSDAY MORNING/ WEDNESDAY NIGHT: 

SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 24.42 PTS OR .71%   //Hang Sang CLOSED UP 560.39 PTS OR 1.90%    /The Nikkei closed UP 210.07 POINTS OR 0.86%//Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP 0.67%

/Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN AT 6.5735 /Oil DOWN TO 59.49 dollars per barrel for WTI and 62.95 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED ALL GREEN EXCEPT SPAIN//  ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN AGAINST THE DOLLAR AT 6.5735. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.5812   : /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFFSHORE YUAN TRADING WEAKER AGAINST THE DOLLAR /TRADE DEAL NOW DEAD..TRUMP  RAISED RATES TO 25%

 

 

3 a./NORTH KOREA/ SOUTH KOREA

NORTH KOREA//USA/

END

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

 

3 C CHINA

CHINA/EUROPE/

China’s threat to free speech is having quite an effect in Europe and no doubt the trade agreement signed in December with China will never see the light of day

A very important read..

(Kern/Gatestone)

China’s Threat To Free Speech In Europe

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 02:00 AM

Authored by Soeren Kern via The Gatestone Institute,

China has imposed sanctions on more than two dozen European and British lawmakers, academics and think tanks. The move comes after the European Union and the United Kingdom imposed sanctions on Chinese officials for human rights abuses in China’s Xinjiang region.

China contends that its sanctions are tit for tat — morally equivalent retaliation — in response to those imposed by Western countries. This is false. The European sanctions are for crimes against humanity, whereas the Chinese sanctions seek to silence European critics of the Chinese Communist Party.

The current standoff is, in essence, about the future of free speech in Europe. If notoriously feckless European officials fail to stand firm in the face of mounting Chinese pressure, Europeans who dare publicly to criticize the CCP in the future can expect to pay an increasingly high personal cost for doing so.

On March 22, the European Union and the United Kingdom announced (here and here) that they had imposed sanctions on four Chinese officials accused of responsibility for abuses against Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang, a remote autonomous region in northwestern China.

Human rights experts say at least one million Muslims are being detained in up to 380 internment camps, where they are subject to torturemass rapesforced labor and sterilizations. After first denying the existence of the camps, China now says that they provide vocational education and training.

Among those targeted by the EU are Chen Mingguo, director of the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau (XPSB). In its Official Journal, the EU stated:

“As Director of the XPSB, Chen Mingguo holds a key position in Xinjiang’s security apparatus and is directly involved in implementing a large-scale surveillance, detention and indoctrination program targeting Uyghurs and people from other Muslim ethnic minorities. In particular, the XPSB has deployed the ‘Integrated Joint Operations Platform’ (IJOP), a big data program used to track millions of Uyghurs in the Xinjiang region and flag those deemed ‘potentially threatening’ to be sent to detention camps. Chen Mingguo is therefore responsible for serious human rights violations in China, in particular arbitrary detentions and degrading treatment inflicted upon Uyghurs and people from other Muslim ethnic minorities, as well as systematic violations of their freedom of religion or belief.”

The EU sanctions, which involve travel bans and asset freezes, conspicuously exclude the top official in Xinjiang, Chen Quanguo, who has been targeted by U.S. sanctions since July 2020. The EU apparently was attempting to show restraint in an effort to forestall an escalation by China.

The Chinese government responded to the EU sanctions within minutes by announcing its own sanctions on 14 European individuals and entities. The individuals and their families are prohibited from entering mainland China, Hong Kong and Macao. They and companies and institutions associated with them are also restricted from doing business with China.

Those prohibited from entering China or doing business with it are German politician Reinhard Bütikofer, who chairs the European Parliament’s delegation to China, Michael Gahler, Raphaël Glucksmann, Ilhan Kyuchyuk and Miriam Lexmann, all Members of the European Parliament, Sjoerd Wiemer Sjoerdsma of the Dutch Parliament, Samuel Cogolati of the Belgian Parliament, Dovilė Šakalienė of the Seimas of Lithuania, German scholar Adrian Zenz, and Swedish scholar Björn Jerdén.

The ten individuals have publicly criticized the Chinese government for human rights abuses. Sjoerdsma, for instance, recently called for a boycott of the Winter Olympics in Beijing in 2022. Cogolati and Šakalienė have drafted genocide legislation, while Zenz has written extensively on the detention camps in Xinjiang.

China also sanctioned the EU’s main foreign policy decision-making body, known as the Political and Security Committee, as well as the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights, the Berlin-based Mercator Institute for China Studies, and the Alliance of Democracies Foundation, a Danish think tank founded by former NATO secretary-general Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

In a March 22 statement, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said:

“The Chinese side urges the EU side to reflect on itself, face squarely the severity of its mistake and redress it. It must stop lecturing others on human rights and interfering in their internal affairs. It must end the hypocritical practice of double standards and stop going further down the wrong path. Otherwise, China will resolutely make further reactions.”

A few days later, on March 26, China announced sanctions on nine British individuals and four entities. The individuals include Tom Tugendhat, Iain Duncan Smith, Neil O’Brien, David Alton, Tim Loughton, Nusrat Ghani, Helena Kennedy, Geoffrey Nice, Joanne Nicola Smith Finley. The entities include China Research Group, Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, Uyghur Tribunal and the Essex Court Chambers.

On March 27, China announced additional sanctions on Americans and Canadian individuals and entities. China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs warned Canada and the United States to “stop political manipulation” or “they will get their fingers burnt.”

EU-China Investment Deal

The EU sanctions, the first such punitive measure against China since an EU arms embargo was imposed in 1989 after the Tiananmen Square pro-democracy crackdown, appear to indicate that both the EU and the UK plan to follow the United States and pursue a harder line against human rights abuses by the Chinese government.

The bedrock of EU-China relations has always been economic, and European leaders have long been accused of downplaying human rights abuses in China to protect European business interests there.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel recently negotiated a controversial trade deal with China.

The so-called Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI), concluded on December 30, was negotiated in great haste. Merkel, facing pressure from both China and German industry, reportedly wanted an agreement at any cost before Germany’s six-month EU presidency ended on December 31, 2020.

The lopsided agreement, which ostensibly aims to level the economic and financial playing field by providing European companies with improved access to the Chinese market, actually allows China to continue to restrict investment opportunities for European companies in many strategic sectors.

One week after the deal was signed, China launched a massive crackdown on democracy activists in Hong Kong.

Now that China has imposed sanctions on European lawmakers, the investment agreement may never see the light of day. “It seems unthinkable that our Parliament would even entertain the idea of ratifying an agreement while its members and one of its committees are under sanctions,” said MEP Marie-Pierre Vedrenne, a parliamentary point-person for the EU-China deal.

European Responses

The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has been strangely silent regarding the Chinese sanctions. Others have been outspoken in their criticism:

“We sanction people who violate human rights, not parliamentarians, as has now been done by the Chinese side,” said German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas. “This is neither comprehensible nor acceptable for us.”

After being put on China’s sanctions list, Dutch lawmaker Sjoerd Sjoerdsma tweeted:

“As long as human rights are being violated, I cannot stay silent. These sanctions prove that China is sensitive to pressure. Let this be an encouragement to all my European colleagues: Speak out!”

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson invited several of the MPs hit by Chinese sanctions to Downing Street. He tweeted:

“This morning I spoke with some of those who have been shining a light on the gross human rights violations being perpetrated against Uyghur Muslims. I stand firmly with them and the other British citizens sanctioned by China.”

Johnson referred to the parliamentarians as “warriors in the fight for free speech” who have his “full-throated support” and expressed bafflement at Beijing’s “ridiculous” actions.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab added:

“It speaks volumes that, while the UK joins the international community in sanctioning those responsible for human rights abuses, the Chinese government sanctions its critics. If Beijing wants to credibly rebut claims of human rights abuses in Xinjiang, it should allow the UN high commissioner for human rights full access to verify the truth.”

Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith tweeted:

It is our duty to call out the Chinese government’s human rights abuses in Hong Kong and their genocide of the Uighur people. Those of us who live free lives under the rule of law must speak for those who have no voice. If that brings the anger of China down upon me the I shall wear that as a badge of honor.”

Labour MP Lisa Nandy, in an interview with the BBC, said:

“This is incredibly serious. It’s a direct attempt to silence and intimidate those who criticize the actions of the Chinese government. If China thinks that this will silence critics, they are completely mistaken….

“This will only strengthen our resolve to be more vocal and more resolute in calling out and challenging the grotesque human rights abuses that we’ve seen coming out of Xinjiang and the clampdown on democracy in Hong Kong. We are British Parliamentarians who will not be divided on this. Whatever political tradition we come from, we are first and foremost democrats and we will stand up for those values, especially when they are under attack.”

MP Tom Tugendhat, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, in an interview with the BBC, said:

“What we are seeing at the moment is a vulnerable and weak China that has failed in its democratic outreach to states around the region, it has failed to undermine the coalition of countries that are standing up for human rights and it has failed to undermine the connection between the UK, the US and indeed Europe, so what they are doing is lashing out.

“Sadly, this is a sign of weakness and not a sign of strength and a demonstration that President Xi is failing the Chinese people, the Chinese Community Party and, indeed, failing the whole world.”

British academic Jo Smith Finley tweeted:

“It seems I am to be sanctioned by the PRC (Chinese) government for speaking the truth about the #Uyghur tragedy in #Xinjiang, and for having a conscience. Well, so be it. I have no regrets for speaking out, and I will not be silenced.”

Adrian Zenz, a German scholar subject to Chinese sanctions, tweeted:

“Beijing’s strategy on Xinjiang is fundamentally shifting. Their goal is not mainly to erase the evidence, although they do that. It is now also less about denying said evidence, although they still do it. Rather, they now feel untouchable about it all.

“Beijing’s strategy is to simply crush and silence any global opposition to its atrocity by inflicting crushingly punitive measures on anyone who speaks out. A very concerning development.”

The China Research Group, which was established by a group of Conservative MPs in the UK to promote debate and fresh thinking about how Britain should respond to the rise of China, concluded:

“It is tempting to laugh off this measure as a diplomatic tantrum. But in reality it is profoundly sinister and just serves as a clear demonstration of many of the concerns we have been raising about the direction of China under Xi Jinping. Other mainstream European think tanks have also been sanctioned this week and it is telling that China now responds to even moderate criticism with sanctions, rather than attempting to defend its actions in Hong Kong and Xinjiang.”

The founder of the Alliance of Democracies Foundation, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, said:

“We will never give in to bullying by authoritarian states. Our work to promote freedom, democracy and human rights around the world will continue. China has once again highlighted the urgent need for democracies to unite in stemming the tide of autocracy in our world.”

Select Commentary

In an editorial, the Financial Times wrote that the EU’s sanctions on China are a sign of Western resolve on China.

“China retaliated against EU sanctions by punishing several parliamentarians, analysts, and Merics, a think-tank on China based in Berlin known for its judicious analysis. It also targeted the committee of 27 member-state ambassadors to the EU who oversee foreign and security policy. Beijing has in recent years used a divide-and-conquer approach with national capitals to undermine a common EU front. With its Xinjiang abuses and overreaction on sanctions, Beijing has managed the rare feat of uniting the EU on a foreign policy issue.

“By targeting critics of its actions and analysts who refuse to toe its line, Beijing has demonstrated its totalitarian mindset. By punishing European Parliament members, it has made it all but impossible for that legislature to ratify the investment agreement. MEPs were already clamoring for more concessions from Beijing, namely the adoption of international standards outlawing forced labor. China will need to make a double retreat to put the deal back on track, which seems unlikely. Having used the investment deal to drive a monetary wedge between Washington and Brussels, Beijing may feel it can dispense with it.”

The Guardian, in an editorial, wrote:

“The sanctions have drastically lowered the odds of the European parliament approving the investment deal which China and the EU agreed in December, to US annoyance. Beijing may think the agreement less useful to China than it is to the EU (though many in Europe disagree). But the measures have done more to push Europe towards alignment with the US than anything Joe Biden could have offered, at a time when China is also alienating other players, notably Australia….

“Beijing’s delayed response to the UK sanctions suggests it did not anticipate them, perhaps unsurprising when the integrated review suggested we should somehow court trade and investment while also taking a tougher line. But the prime minister and foreign secretary have, rightly, made their support for sanctioned individuals and their concerns about gross human rights violations in Xinjiang clear. Academics and politicians, universities and other institutions, should follow their lead in backing targeted colleagues and bodies. China has made its position plain. So should democratic societies.”

Lea Deuber, China correspondent for Süddeutsche Zeitungwrote:

“In response to European sanctions against those responsible for human rights crimes in Xinjiang, Beijing is sanctioning European politicians, academics and research institutes. The sanctions must not be understood as a threat against individuals. They are an attack on the entire European Union, on its fundamental values ​​and freedom.

“Beijing accuses the EU of questioning China’s sovereignty. In reality, the regime is trying to force the European Union to take sides in the dispute between the U.S. and China through violence and manipulation. The escalation must be a wake-up call.

For far too long the EU has believed in the illusion of a middle ground. With a view to the cruel conduct in Xinjiang, Brussels waited for years, only appealing again and again. Even with the sanctions, Brussels had sought a softened solution, disregarding important Chinese players in the region.

“That must come to an end. Berlin must draw conclusions. At the end of last year, contrary to all warnings, the German government pushed through the investment agreement with China. This still has to be ratified by the EU Parliament. That is now unthinkable.”

The Frankfurter Allgemeine, in an article titled, “Anyone Who Does Not Sing Beijing’s Song Will be Punished,” wrote: “In plain language: Beijing wants to decide who in Europe can talk or write about China.”

UK MP Nusrat Ghani, writing for the Spectatornoted:

“There is a positive side to all this. The reaction from the Chinese Communist Party shows that some of the work going on in Parliament is having an effect — and is reaching the ears of those who matter in Beijing. Twelve months ago, the abuse of the Uyghurs in Xinjiang was only whispered about in Parliament. There was no sense that the UK’s supply chains might be affected, or that we could bring about real change. Now the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, of which I am a member, has held an inquiry into forced labor in UK value chains, and we have found ‘compelling evidence’ of Chinese slave labor links to major brands.

“The Chinese authorities should realize that their actions today have laid down a challenge for Parliament. They have essentially told MPs to stop asking questions and to mind their own business. Throughout its history, our Parliament has never much liked that attitude. I can assure the Chinese Communist Party that I and my fellow MPs will continue to shine a light on their activities, and that Parliament — more than ever — stands behind us.”

Robin Brandt, Shanghai correspondent for the BBC, wrote:

“China has gone for the people exerting the most pressure on Boris Johnson to be tough on China. It’s gone for the people who say ‘genocide’ has happened in Xinjiang.

“The measures are essentially tokenistic — it’s unlikely these people or entities did any business with Chinese firms or people anyway.

“Targeting Neil O’Brien is personal for the UK prime minister. The MP is in charge of leading policy in Downing Street.

“Going after Essex Court Chambers — a group of self-employed barristers — for a legal opinion it reached also shows you how China views an independent judicial system. It doesn’t believe in them.”

Sophia Yan, China correspondent for the Telegraph, in an analysis, wrote:

“Beijing’s sanctions against the UK and EU — targeting MPs, academics, even legal groups — show the regime of Xi Jinping will not tolerate dissent from anyone, anywhere….

“China is flexing its muscles to challenge a rules-based world order set by the West in a campaign to be treated as an equal. It plays well at home.

“But there are genuine questions over whether the show of force is wise. Beijing’s behavior is certainly not winning hearts and minds, and instead appears to be doing damage to its international standing.

“Beijing has long bet that most countries would be wooed by lucrative opportunities with the world’s second-largest economy.

“How long that will continue to be the case remains to be seen. Britain, for its part, is unlikely to step back from its criticism of human rights abuses in Xinjiang, and it’s hard to see how China could cool tensions if it wanted to….

“A key test of whether Beijing can get away with throwing its weight around like this will be whether the EU moves to ratify an investment agreement with China. It has been in the works for seven years, but EU officials were expressing doubts even before they were hit with sanctions.

“Whether the deal is approved, renegotiated, or scrapped entirely will send a message to Beijing — either that it can indeed do what it wants, or that it’s crossed a line.”

Writing for the Wall Street Journal, Matt Pottinger, former deputy White House national security adviser, concluded:

“Beijing’s message is unmistakable: You must choose. If you want to do business in China, it must be at the expense of American values. You will meticulously ignore the genocide of ethnic and religious minorities inside China’s borders; you must disregard that Beijing has reneged on its major promises—including the international treaty guaranteeing a ‘high degree of autonomy’ for Hong Kong; and you must stop engaging with security-minded officials in your own capital unless it’s to lobby them on Beijing’s behalf.

“Another notable element of Beijing’s approach is its explicit goal of making the world permanently dependent on China, and exploiting that dependency for political ends. Mr. Xi has issued guidance, institutionalized this month by his rubber-stamp parliament, that he’s pursuing a grand strategy of making China independent of high-end imports from industrialized nations while making those nations heavily reliant on China for high-tech supplies and as a market for raw materials. In other words, decoupling is precisely Beijing’s strategy—so long as it’s on Beijing’s terms.

“Even more remarkable, the Communist Party is no longer hiding its reasons for pursuing such a strategy. In a speech Mr. Xi delivered early last year…he said China ‘must tighten international production chains’ dependence on China’ with the aim of ‘forming powerful countermeasures and deterrent capabilities.’

“This phrase — ‘powerful countermeasures and deterrent capabilities’ — is party jargon for offensive leverage. Beijing’s grand strategy is to accumulate and exert economic leverage to achieve its political objectives around the world.

“CEOs will find it increasingly difficult to please both Washington and Beijing…. Chinese leaders, as mentioned, are issuing high-decibel warnings that multinationals must abandon such values as the price of doing business in China. Like sailors straddling two boats, American companies are likely to get wet.

“Beijing is trying to engineer victory from the mind of a single leader; free societies like ours harness the human spirit. Therein lies our ultimate advantage. The Communist Party’s leaders are right about one thing: American CEOs, their boards and their investors have to decide which side they want to help win.”

4/EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

ITALY/RUSSIA

Not good:  Italy expels two Russian diplomats over a NATO spy case where on Tuesday an Italian navy captain was caught passing documents belonging to NATO to a Russian military official in exchange for money.

 

Italy Expels Russian Diplomats Over “Extremely Serious” NATO Spy Case

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 02:45 AM

What’s being described as an “extremely serious incident” and fast escalating spy case has resulted in the Italian government expelling two Russian diplomats from the country on Wednesday. Russian Ambassador Sergei Razov had been immediately summoned and informed of the drastic punitive action.

The case reportedly involves an Italian navy captain who was caught passing secret documents belonging to the NATO member state to a Russian military official on Tuesday night. The Italian navy officer is alleged to have received money in return.

Via AFP

It’s since escalated into a major diplomatic spat between Italy and Russian, with the Kremlin now vowing retaliation for the expelling of the two diplomats. Western allies are now weighing in on the dispute, fueling the controversy further, with British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab saying the UK “stands in solidarity with Italy and its actions today, exposing and taking action against Russia’s malign and destabilising activity that is designed to undermine our NATO ally.”

Here are the few details known related to the spy charges as laid out in Reuters:

The Italian, a captain of a frigate, and the Russian, who was accredited at the embassy, were accused of “serious crimes tied to spying and state security” after their meeting on Tuesday night,Italian Carabinieri police said.

The suspects were not officially identified. A police source said the captain was called Walter Biot, adding that he added accepted 5,000 euros ($5,865) in return for the information.

Italian news sources identified that NATO documents were among the files that the Italian had handed over” – which has led to inquiries over security vulnerability by other NATO members of the alliance. And further the AFP described “confidential documents” passed during a “clandestine meeting” – after which Russia’s ambassador on Wednesday morning was issued notification of “the immediate expulsion of the two Russian officials involved in this very serious affair”.

It appears the “clandestine meeting” was being monitored by Italian police and intelligence, given there’s widespread reports that the Italian captain was “caught red-handed”. The Russian officials involved avoided arrest due to diplomatic immunity.

 

The Russian Embassy in Italy, via Wiki Commons

Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio stated of the developing case Wednesday that “The accusation of espionage against Italian and Russian officers shows that we must continue to work closely with Europe and our allies to constantly improve our means of protecting the safety and well-being of our citizens.”

No further information has been publicly released as to the identities of the Russians expelled, but it’s being reported via the Russian embassy in Rome that the pair worked in the Russian military attaché’s office, according to Reuters.

The Italian captain Biot meanwhile has been arrested and is undergoing questioning and an investigation.

END
NATO,EU,RUSSIA
NATO jets intercepts Russian aircraft in European and Norwegian territory 10 times in a 6 hr time period across several areas.
(zerohedge)

NATO Says Its Jets Intercepted Russian Aircraft 10 Times In One Day 

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 04:15 AM

NATO officials announced that the day prior its jets were scrambled 10 times in a mere six-hour time period in response to a “rare peak” in Russian aircraft activity across “several areas”.

“NATO aircraft intercepted six different groups of Russian military aircraft near alliance airspace in less than six hours,” the Brussels-based military alliance said in a statement of the intense period of Monday, which appears to have been confirmed in at least one photograph.

 

NATO photograph of intercept in action.

A NATO official told several major media outlets that that the Russian flights posed a potential “risk” to civilian aviation as they failed to transmit transponder codes as is normative in such crowded airspace. 

As the BCC details NATO identified six groups of Russian planes in the following locations where NATO intercepts took place:

  • Norwegian F-16s scrambled as two Tu-95 Bears neared the Norwegian coast

  • The Russian planes then flew south over the North Sea prompting action from UK and Belgian air force planes

  • Two Tu-160 Blackjack bombers were later intercepted by the Norwegian air force

  • Allied planes also tracked three Russian planes over the Black Sea

  • A Russian maritime patrol plane was intercepted by Italian planes over the Baltic Sea near Kaliningrad.

The regions named constitute much of Russia’s Western flank, which becomes more interesting given this admission which is buried in the very last paragraph of the full official NATO statement posted to the military command’s website:

“The Russian aircraft intercepted on Monday never entered Alliance airspace…”

Moscow’s relations with NATO have lately hit a low-point from past years, with the two sides not communicating at all, prompting NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg issuing a call last week for the reestablishment of the ‘NATO-Russia Council’ – which hasn’t met since 2019. It acts as a military-to-military point of dialogue and ‘deconfliction’ hotline of sorts.

As CNN reviews, intercept incidents between the two rivals have grown immensely since that time“NATO aircraft scrambled more than 400 times in 2020 to intercept unknown aircraft according to the alliance.”

CNN reports of NATO’s accusations further that “About 90 percent were in response to flights by Russian aircraft. NATO says Russian flights often pose a risk to civilian air traffic over Europe because the Russians often fly without transmitting a transponder code indicating their position and altitude and do not file a flight plan or communicate with air traffic controllers.”

 

end

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

UKRAINE/RUSSIA

USA raises threat level to “imminent crisis” on the Ukraine-Russian border.

(zerohedge)

US Army Raises Europe Threat Level To ‘Potential Imminent Crisis’ On Ukraine-Russia Fears

 
WEDNESDAY, MAR 31, 2021 – 06:40 PM

The recent rise in tensions between the US and Russia over continued simmering conflict in Ukraine seemed to correspond with the Biden administration entering the White House. Many pundits have commented that on a foreign policy front things are eerily feeling like a throwback to the Obama years of 2014 or 2015, whether its the Ukraine and Crimea crises, or Syria returning to headlines again (including Biden’s ordered airstrikes on the country in February), or the growing Russia-NATO standoff. 

This past weekend we were among the very few to take notice of the Pentagon’s latest large military equipment delivery to Ukraine’s army via the port of Odessa, following Biden earlier pledging that “Crimea is Ukraine” and that he’d work to thwart Russian aims in the region. 

And now this week the US European Command (EUCOM) has issued a notification of a raised ‘threat level’ in Europe. The designation has been officially raised to one of “potential imminent crisis” this week. It comes just as The New York Times and others are reporting a serious escalation in fighting in Eastern Ukraine, which has signaled the collapse of yet another cease-fire.

 

Illustrative file: AFP/Getty Images

The raised threat level centers on Ukraine’s commander-in-chief of national armed forces alleging that Russia has amassed more troops on its border this week, and further that “pro-Moscow separatists were systematically violating a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine,” according to Reuters.

Kiev’s parliament followed by announcing a sharp “escalation” in the east – a contested region which has seen 14,000 deaths going back to 2014.

The NY Times had linked the raised alert status by EUCOM specifically to Ukraine, writing “the U.S. military’s European Command raised its watch level from possible crisis to potential imminent crisis — the highest level — in response to the deployment of the additional Russian troops.”

The report also described the infusion of new Russian military equipment to the Kremlin-backed rebels, something which the latest follow-up statement by Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov downplayedcharging that it is the Ukrainian side now taking “provocative actions that would lead to war”.

The Times report cited a US official who estimated that some 4,000 additional Russian troops remained behind along the Ukraine border region following the end of recent military drills, something which one retired Army general said could just be “posturing” designed to test the Biden administration

Meanwhile Washington has apparently put Moscow ‘on notice’ over a potential Ukraine escalation…

Despite long ago falling out of daily and weekly headlines, the war in the Donbass region has remained a ‘low-simmering conflict’ which has never stopped. Battle lines and disputed fronts, along with rival checkpoints, have been consistently manned.

The usual military exercises that take place this time of year, or larger than usual troop build-up?

However, as the NYT noted, “Four Ukrainian soldiers were killed and another seriously wounded in a battle against Russian-backed separatists in the Donetsk Region” on Tuesday, suggesting a severe flare-up on the horizon which could once again draw in external Western forces, especially as Biden has lately vowed to get “tough” on Putin’s Russia.

 

end

RUSSIA/UKRAINE/THE WEST

Kremlin Responds To Anger Over Ukraine Border Build-Up: ‘Our Internal Troop Movements Not Your Concern’

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 12:00 PM

Various reports strongly suggest that over the past week there’s been a significant uptick in shelling and fighting in the war-torn Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine. This has served to thrust the over 5-year long crisis back in the media spotlight in the past days, particularly after the US Army ( via US European Command, or EUCOM) raised its Europe threat level to its highest of “potential imminent crisis”.

At the same time The New York Times and others are detailing the escalation while alleging ‘Russian aggression’ is fueling the fresh flare-up, which has signaled the collapse of yet another cease-fire. And more alarmingly the reports allege a major build-up of Russian troops and tanks along Ukraine’s eastern border. But even as the NY Times report mused, it’s also likely that the estimated 4,000 regular Russian soldiers there were simply left over from recent scheduled military exercises common during this time of year. 

The Kremlin has responded to the slew of reports on Thursday, underscoring that given the troops remain entirely within Russia’s national boundaries, it’s essentially ‘nobody’s business’ where they go.

 

Via Reuters

“The Russian Federation transfers the Armed Forces on its soil as it wants to. This should not concern anyone and this is not posing any threat to anyone,” spokesman Dmitry Peskov emphasized.

Moscow is taking “all the necessary measures to ensure security of its frontiers,” he stressed according to TASS. Peskov added that:

“As for the participation of Russian troops in the armed conflict on Ukraine’s soil, the Russian troops have never taken part in it and are not participating now.”

He further said: “And we, the European countries and all world states would not like the civil war in Ukraine as a result of provocations and provocative steps by Ukraine’s military to flare up again.”

Moscow’s reaction further comes after Ukraine’s commander-in-chief of national armed forces alleged that Russia intentionally amassed more troops on the border, and further that “pro-Moscow separatists were systematically violating a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine,” according to Reuters.

Meanwhile the NYT report had noted that within the past days “Four Ukrainian soldiers were killed and another seriously wounded in a battle against Russian-backed separatists in the Donetsk Region” – strongly suggesting that a severe flare-up could be on the horizon.

But again, Russia is downplaying all of this. “The movement of Russian troops across the country should not concern other states since this does not pose any threat to them,” the Kremlin reiterated according to state sources.

 

end

UKRAINE/RUSSIA

War drums beating louder and louder

(Robert H)

War drums are getting louder by the day now

 
 
 
 
 
No one masses such equipment without expectation of use.

The real tragedy of this is that the public is unprepared for the fall out from this.

As Easter approaches one cannot help but wonder what it will take for common sense and good will towards one’s own people to prevail in the minds of so called politicians and leaders. 

 

Support from Biden’s CIA and the US Pentagon in Ukraine! 
(translated from Greek news source)

The United States recently poured “oil on the fire” as a statement from the State Department said “full US support for Ukraine in the face of Russian aggression.”

The same support was offered by the American Secretary of State, A. Blinken, to his Ukrainian counterpart.

The truce is over! 
At the same time, the most important development is the fact that for a few hours now the ceasefire in Eastern Ukraine between the forces of Kiev and the Russians has ended, the attempt to secure another truce has failed and Russia has rejected all proposals.

So from the moment there is no official truce, everyone understands what is coming…

US Secretary of State: We fully support Ukraine 
The US Secretary Anthony Blinken, during conversations with the Oykrano counterpart Dmytro Koulempa expressed Washington’s support for the territorial integrity of Ukraine “forward to the continued aggression of Russia”, said the State Department in a press statement released by .

 

“The US Secretary of State has reaffirmed his full support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty over Russian aggression in Donbas and Crimea.

He expressed concern over the security situation in eastern Ukraine and offered his condolences on the recent loss of four Ukrainian soldiers. “

Earlier in the day, the US Pentagon expressed concern about growing tensions on the Ukraine-Crimea border, following reports by the Ukrainian military that reinforcements of Russian forces along the way.

Pentagon: We are concerned but we support Ukraine 
“We are concerned about the recent escalation of Russian aggression in eastern Ukraine, including the violations of the June 20 ceasefire agreement that resulted in the deaths of four Ukrainian soldiers on March 26,” said U.S. State Department spokesman .

“Russia’s destabilizing actions undermine the escalation of tensions that has been achieved,” he said, thanks to a truce between the Ukrainian armed forces and pro-Russian separatists, and that hostilities have escalated since January.

Kiev and Moscow are blaming each other for the escalation while there is a large Russian military deployment along the Ukrainian border.

“This is one of the reasons why (…) we got in touch with the Russians to try to clarify what exactly is going on, ” Kerby said.

The head of the US General Staff, General Mark Milli, spoke Wednesday with Russian Chief of General Staff Valery Gerasimov and Chief of General Staff Ruslan Homschak of the United States.

General Homchak on Tuesday denounced the “threat” to Ukraine’s “security”, claiming that the Russians had 28,000 fighters and “more than 2,000 trainers and military advisers” in Ukraine.

US: European Administration Alarmed – What Biden’s Adviser Said 
Moscow denies having developed men or weapons in the field. John Kerby said US forces in Europe were on high alert for a “potential immediate crisis” and that the United States had referred to tensions in Ukraine in contacts with its NATO partners.

Yesterday Tuesday, the national security adviser to US President Joe Biden, Jake Sullivan, reaffirmed his “unshakeable US support for the sovereignty (and) territorial integrity (Ukraine) forward to the continued aggression” that accuse Moscow during conversations of with Andrei Germak, adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Source: 
https://warnews247.gr/dramatiki-klimakosi-ipa-stirizoume-pliros-tin-oukrania-apenanti-sti-rosia-oi-evropaikes-dynameis-tethikan-se-synagermo-i-ekecheiria-elixe-kai-episima/

 

RUSSIA

Navalny begins a prison hunger strike as his condition worsens.  Supporters are claiming that the Kremlin is slowly killing him

(zerohedge_

Navalny Begins Prison Hunger Strike As Supporters Claim Kremlin “Slowly Killing” Him

 
WEDNESDAY, MAR 31, 2021 – 07:20 PM

A day after The Washington Post featured an op-ed claiming that “the Kremlin may be slowly killing Alexei Navalny in prison,” the anti-Putin activist has announced on Wednesday that he’s begun a hunger strike to protest medical conditions at the prison facility, following his 2-and-a-half year sentence which was handed down last month.

He’s said to be protesting the refusal of prison medical staff at the notorious Penal Colony No. 2 east of Moscow to treat a suspected trapped nerve in his back. Navalny has also stated he’s lost sensation in one of his legs due to weeks of severe back pain, for which he recently went to so far as to voice fears his leg may have to be amputated.  

Prison authorities have shot back, saying Navalny is in “stable and satisfactory” condition, with top Kremlin officials recently chalking it up to his supporters still engaged in an anti-Russia propaganda war that has help from the West.

 

Via AP

In a letter posted by his legal team to social media Navalny said, “I demand that a doctor be allowed to see me, and until this happens, I am declaring a hunger strike.”

In a prior message last week Navalny first accused prison authorities of “deliberate denial of due medical assistance” in order to ensure his suffering. He essentially claimed “torture” – though he related it to prison-orchestrated sleep deprivation. 

“My condition has worsened. I feel acute pain in my right leg, and I feel numbness in its lower part,” Navalny wrote. “I have trouble walking.” His lawyer Olga Mikhailova had added to this in follow-up televised remarks, saying that his condition is “extremely unfavorable”. She said, “Everyone is afraid for his life and health.”

A number of international headlines then seized on the torture allegations, reporting that the 44-year old outspoken Putin critic who previously alleged the Russian president ordered his poisoning with nerve agent last August is now being literally “tortured” as part of his confinement.

He’s also said to have been threatened with solitary confinement over bad behavior and repeat violations for failing to conform to the strict prison regimen.

6.Global Issues

CANADA

This small house on Apollo drive sold for 612,000 over least or 2.6 million Cdn dollars  (2.08 million USA)

“Buyer Mayhem” – Canadian House Goes For $612,000 Over List After Bidding War

 
WEDNESDAY, MAR 31, 2021 – 09:20 PM

Toronto is the most overheated housing market among any metropolitan city in Canada. The latest example of this is the recent sale of a home that sparked a bidding war among buyers in Banbury Don Mills, a suburb in Toronto’s North York district. 

The Globe and Mail report the 3,500 sqft home located at 42 Apollo Dr., Toronto, was listed for $1,998,000 in January and immediately saw massive interest among prospective homebuyers. 

Real agent Belinda Lelli said she had 112 showings on the suburban home with more than 17 offers. 

“The strategy was to put it on the market before the spring,” said Lelli, because inventories were low in January.

“It was buyer mayhem from the onset,” she said. “I fielded 112 showings and 17 offers.”

She said the house quickly sold for $612,000 over list or a 30% premium versus the initial list price. 

Lelli said the suburban area is very sought after in a post-COVID world. “It’s on a very quiet, family-friendly street, and it has five bedrooms, plus one bedroom in the fully finished basement,” she added. 

In addition to being in the suburbs, the home can support two at-home offices, bedrooms for two kids, and even a finished basement for a housekeeper, nanny, or an in-law suite. 

Lelli correctly points out that the low inventory and cheap mortgage rates resulted in the home’s bidding war. Also, being in the suburbs, city-dwellers are finding the area attractive. 

Earlier this month, BMO Senior Economist Robert Kavcic pointed out the “boiling” Canadian housing in one chart, which shows housing prices across Canada have erupted in recent months. 

Kavcic said: “that is, the 1-month change is faster than 3-month; which is faster than the 6-month; which is faster than the 12-month. In all cases but the 12-month (and that won’t be long either), price growth had accelerated through the rates seen in 2017, when policymakers were working on multiple fronts to tame the market.”

Rapid home price increases have alarmed the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation in a recent Housing Market Assessment report. The agency singled out Toronto and called it the most overheated market in the country. 

Royal Bank of Canada economist Robert Hogue finds real estate prices are moving the fastest in suburbs and rural communities. 

“Surging prices are also pulling demand forward, with many buyers opting to act now for fear they’ll miss out,” said Hogue, outlining how people can work remotely and want more land in a post-lockdown environment. “The factors driving the current frenzy will eventually reverse or run their course.”

Hogue warns the frenzy won’t last forever as overheated conditions usually result in a correction. 

A similar frenzy is happening to Canada’s neighbor in the south, that being the US. The Federal Reserve sparked a housing boom with historically low mortgage rates as the remote-work phenomenon is pushing city dwellers to the suburbs. 

In one instance, a home in the Citrus Heights, a suburb of Sacramento, California, was recently listed for $399,900, and in just two days, received a mindboggling 122 offers. The home ended selling well above the list price. 

The bottom line is that the Canadian housing market is boiling, and once demand languishes, a correction will be seen. 

END
MEXICO
A popular destination for many tourists is this small town in the Yucatan Peninsula.  This paradise town is now descending into chaos with drugs and street gang shooting
(zerohedge)
 

“Crisis In Paradise” – Mexican Tourist Mecca Descends Into Chaos As Cartels Wage War During Spring Break 

 
WEDNESDAY, MAR 31, 2021 – 10:40 PM

While popular Instagram influencers and millennials flooded beaches, resorts, clubs, cenotes, and the Mayan ruins in Tulum, Mexico, during spring break, the up-and-coming paradise town on the Caribbean coastline of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula is descending into chaos.  

These days, Tulum to Cancún (Cancún is about a 73-mile drive north) is flooded with spring breakers, millennials, and anyone trying to escape the virus pandemic in the US and Europe. Tulum is a coastal town. Known for its beautiful beaches and party vibe, but it’s gaining a reputation for crime and violence. 

Homicides in Tulum jumped 109% in 2018, surging to 23 from 11, then increasing 47.8% in 2019 to 34. The upward trend continued last year, with homicides up 44.1% to 49. This year, homicides and other violent crimes are expected to hit record highs. 

Tulum is undergoing a dangerous turf war among drug cartels. Six cartels operate in the resort town, including the powerful Jalisco New Generation Cartel, the Zetas Vieja Escuela (Old School Zetas), and the Sinaloa Cartel. The main reason cartels operate in this area is because some tourists want party drugs. 

For a town of about 80,000 residents, there are only 150 police officers, said James Tobin, a Quintana Roo-based citizens’ representative on the federal government’s National Security Council, told the local newspaper Reforma. 

This week, a cartel shootout occurred in downtown Tulum. A Spanish tourist was “seriously injured” during a shootout, according to El Sol de Puebla

In the last 24 hours, three cartel shootings have occurred within city limits, killing two and wounding eight. 

Baltimore native Alastair Williamson captured the aftermath of one of the shootings in Tulum. 

Twitter user Joey Sutera responded to the chaos unfolding in Tulum. He said: 

To all my friends heading to Tulum this month for Zamna & beyond: There is a real problem in this moment that the media is not covering. The cartels are fighting for turf and control even at venues on the beach road and people are getting shot almost daily. 

As of now, most of them are gang shootings, but there is always a risk of getting in the middle of a crossfire. Tulum is beautiful, and hopefully it will pass. Just exercise more-than-usual caution.

But it’s not just drug cartels that are dangerous – so are the police.

While drug cartels waged war, demonstrators all week, mainly in the evenings, have flooded the streets in protest against police corruption. 

The demonstrations began when a woman in Tulum was killed George-Floyd style last weekend. The video is graphic but has ignited small pockets of social unrest of residents who are absolutely fed up with cartels, police, and the corrupt government. 

For days, mainly in the evenings and on the downtown strip, young locals protested the police killing of the unarmed women. 

While cartel wars and one protest must be strainful for police and local officials who need to keep the beach town in pristine condition to sucker Americans into paradise to blow their stimulus checks, another protest was seen this week with dozens of demonstrators holding signs such as this one, that read: “Tourist You Are Not Safe In Tulum.” The sign is hard to read, but it appears to say tourists are not safe from “corrupt police officers.” 

Last week, one American tourist, who was ruffed up by corrupt police, said: 

“I was absolutely scared when a Tulum police officer pulled me over. I was threatened with 36-hours in jail, but there was no way that I was speeding because other cars were going faster than me. Maybe it was the rental car that flagged the officer that I was a tourist. As soon as I grabbed my license from my purse, the officer noticed I only had American dollars and demanded money. If I didn’t pay the fine – he threatened me with jail,” said American tourist Melinda Lewis. 

One tourist reached out to us and said their Airbnb host in Tulum warned about a possible cartel war in the beach town. 

Other tourists are panicking as they’re being warned about an impending cartel war. 

With Instagram influencers flocking to the tiny beach town, there’s a dark secret they won’t share with you on their feed, that is, Tulum is a chaotic hellhole full of corrupt cops and daily shootings as cartels wage war against each other. 

end

Michael Every on today’s major stories

(Courtesy Michael Every)

Rabo: Is $2.25 Trillion Even Much Money Anymore?

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 10:13 AM

By Michael Every of Rabobank

Learn Your Lines

The Biden infrastructure plan has been rolled out, and it seems the Washington Post was kept in darkness by its source: the total was ‘only’ $2.25 trillion. Is $2.25 trillion even much money anymore? I ask that in all seriousness seeing the sums thrown around us daily.

The plan speaks about the lines associated with infrastructure. Yet US politicians are already repeating their own ones: “None shall pass,” from Republicans over a corporate tax hike from 21% to 28%, and making some firms pay some tax; “Double or quits,” from progressive Democrats, who may have been the ones leaking to the Washington Post about the USD4 trillion figure.

Markets also used their own lines on screens to try to guess where the largesse of the government might flow: Cement? Steel? Paint? Solar panels? Electric batteries? Belts, to prevent builders’ usual brand of décolletage? US 10-year yields are at 1.75% at time of writing and the DXY was slightly down on the day, as the market peruses what this all means. It still isn’t quite sure.

I have long flagged we would end up moving to a world where markets would have to listen to politicians, not central banks, to know where the goodies will flow in the economy. Yet in that regard, for me the most important part of the package is not in the details. Rather, it’s in the packaging of *why* it’s needed, which I think represents where far more money will ultimately have to flow. First of all, we see this from the text of the American Jobs Plan:

“Like great projects of the past, the President’s plan will unify and mobilize the country to meet the great challenges of our time: the climate crisis and the ambitions of an autocratic China.”

So American jobs and unity are immediately linked to the climate and Beijing. Which they are in many ways, but saying so has huge implications as neither are going away. Second, we see this:

“By ensuring that American taxpayers’ dollars benefit working families and their communities, and not multinational corporations or foreign governments, the plan will require that goods and materials are made in America and shipped on US-flag, US-crewed vessels. The plan also will ensure that Americans who have endured systemic discrimination and exclusion for generations finally have a fair shot at obtaining good paying jobs and being part of a union.”  

If the Trump White House had released this, would it have looked much different in key areas? Yes, there is a *huge* difference between word and deed. A large slice of the plan is for ‘social infrastructure’, for example, which is not the same as bridges and ports, etc. And could global supply chains really be shifted to the US? Even in the text above there lies a question: if new capital goods are to be made in America, why do they need to be shipped on US-flagged, US-crewed vessels?

Yet against the backdrop of the Republicans transforming into a working class party, this Biden plan sees *both* competing more for Blue Collar voters. That means being anti-free trade, or at least far more Hamiltonian; and competing on who is the more vociferously anti-China. Stimulus will ultimately come; and stimulus will ultimately mean more US decoupling – or at the very least, global realignment of shipping lines away from China and towards others the US prefers for national security reasons. It’s a trend already underway: politics simply shows it will accelerate.

How rapidly? While taking no normative stance, and knowing that tax hikes are political anathema – yet MMT is always available! – what I can say is that an infrastructure spend, especially if sold as national-security related, is probably going to be popular with voters.

Part of that view is admittedly personal: the last time I was State-side pre-Covid, a business trip from New York to DC involved a train that broke down in-between trundling along like those in southern Thailand (but without the charm of hordes of food vendors getting on and off at every stop to help you get diabetes – you had to do that at the New York station, and then wait four hours to do it again in DC); and then a much-delayed flight back through an over-crowded 1980’s-vintage airport with straining air-con, manned by sullen staff offering awful service (who can’t get the tips needed to boost their low wages, of course, so it was hard not to sympathize with them). My honest impression was that this was an alternative timeline where the USSR had won the Cold War. Logically, that makes it hard for the US to win a new one.

Against that backdrop, other lines remain in focus.

  • The BBC yesterday announced its China correspondent will be based in Taiwan from now on for his own safety, which makes a statement – yet US defence voices are wondering how long it will be before his next move might be required;

  • Note the BBC didn’t opt for Hong Kong. Because as Bloomberg says “Hong Kong Police Warn residents to Avoid Red Lines on Politics”, including the quote from a police officer “Do not tempt the law – it’s simple. A healthy attitude is to say ‘How can I be a responsible citizen and just make sure that I contribute to the overall harmony and peace and security of this place,’ rather than say ‘Hmm, let me see how far I can push this envelope, so that I can almost touch the red line, but you can’t touch me. This isn’t how we want to police Hong Kong.”;

  • There are reports of a Russian troop build-up on the border with Ukraine, which will see the EU respond with immediate mobilisation of a working group to decide on the voting system to be used in a committee that discusses the matter; and

  • The blockage of the Suez Canal has seen renewed interest in a building a Med-Red ‘Suez Canal 2’ along the Israel/Gaza/Egyptian borders – at least this time the plan isn’t to use nuclear weapons to do it. If the US now gets serious about its own Belt and Road Initiative, perhaps with US-sourced capital goods to build it, shipped on US-manned and flagged ships, then all this duplication of lines on maps will get even more interesting.

But back to (housing) markets to close. The RBNZ will be unhappy to see that Kiwi house prices rose 16.1% y/y in March, up from 14.5%. Why? Because now it’s openly their job to do something about it: what, exactly? Aussie house prices also went up 2.8% m/m in March, says CoreLogic, or 33% annualised, and investor home loans jumped 4.5% in the month vs. 9.4% the month prior. Yet we all know what the RBA are going to do about it: and it’s the total absence of any kind of plan at all.

7. OIL ISSUES

MORNING

Oil Gives Up Gains As OPEC+ Reportedly Agrees To Gradual Output Hikes

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 11:30 AM

Update (1130ET): The leaks are coming thick and fast now with reports that delegates have agreed to gradually raise output over the next few months.

Amena Bakr reports: “This is what the easing will look like for the group: May 350k, June 350k and July 450k”

And WTI just cannot make its mind up…

A reminder of the tensions the alliance faces: While Saudi Arabia is making deep cuts to its exports – 1 million barrels a day since December – Iraq is keeping its own sales up near a nine-month high. Meanwhile, Libya, not part of the supply-management pact, is exporting the most in at least seven years.

*  *  *

WTI has given up its overnight gains… again… after the now standard leak headlines “from an anonymous delegate” spooked the market.

Most members are reportedly giving support to a one-month extension, but the outcome isn’t decided and delegates say there are some countries that would prefer to increase production.

“The situation is not clear yet,” one delegate cautions.

OPEC+ nations are discussing not just what to do in May, but also about the next few months.

Oil demand is expected to grow significantly during the northern hemisphere summer. It will also grow in the Middle East, where countries like Saudi Arabia consume vast amounts of crude to run power plants harder and meet air-conditioning demand. So,as Bloomberg’s Javier Blas notes, we may have a two-pronged OPEC decision, with one message for May and another one for June and after.

And the delegates are now debating a proposal for gradual output hikes.

This sent WTI back below $60 and into the red for the day…

As Bloomberg’s Julian Lee notes, in theory, the group can make three more increases of 500,000 barrels a day before it has restored the full 2 million barrels that it originally planned to return in January. But Russia and Kazakhstan have already had most of their shares of that increase. Russia’s target can only increase by another 115,000 barrels a day and Kazakhstan’s by just 18,000 barrels until they’ve had their full shares of the original increase of 2 million barrels a day.

That’s going to mean they’ll soon have to watch others getting increases they don’t share in, or that the others will have to agree to lift Russia and Kazakhstan’s shares of the group’s collective output – something that’s always been difficult for OPEC in the past.

So what will OPEC+ finally do?

end
AFTERNOON

Oil Surges: Here’s Why Goldman Is Delighted By The OPEC+ Deal

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 03:54 PM

While oil initially fluctuated heading into today’s OPEC+ summit, and seemed unsure how to trade initially as leaks of the deal emerged, WTI and Brent have since jumped by $2/bbl, trading near session highs and unwinding yesterday’s sharp losses.

The reason for this, as Goldman’s commodity analyst Damien Courvalin explains, is that while OPEC+ agreed to ramp-up production gradually in coming months, and the increase coming a month sooner than Goldman had expected (May vs. June)…

… Courvalin writes that the June and July increases are smaller than the the strategist had assumed…

… for a net similar cumulative ramp-up through July.

Meanwhile, and as expected, Saudi Arabia will start reversing its unilateral cut in May by 250 kb/d, consistent with expectations.

Slower supply release aside, a key reason why Goldman is even more bullish now, is because the bank forecasts a larger rebound in oil demand this summer than OPEC and the IEA, requiring an additional 2 mb/d increase in OPEC+ production from July to October. Meanwhile, and even if nudged by the US administration, Courvalin writes that this is still a tall order for a group of producers that has cut drilling by 50% over the past year. Importantly, Goldman expects a normalization in excess inventories by this fall even with such a large ramp-up and, as a result, reiterate its view that the recent sell-off is a transient pullback in a larger oil price rally.

Taking a step back, today’s OPEC+ decision points to a “still cautious and orderly ramp-up from OPEC+, still allowing for a tight oil market this market.” This, Goldman claims, should reduce the wide distribution of future prices reflected in the current elevated levels of Brent implied volatility (especially puts).

As such, Goldman recommend entering a new trade, selling $55/bbl puts on Dec-22 Brent futures (struck to capture the elevated put skew), noting that “investors who sell puts risk loss of the strike price less the premium received for selling the put.”

* * *

Finally, from Bloomberg’s Javier Blas, here is his snapshot of three things the market likes and doesn’t like about today’s OPEC+ deal:

First, the positives:

  • Signals that Saudi Arabia sees better demand over the summer, despite worries about Europe
  • Provides certainty that any production hike will be limited
  • Prince Abdulaziz reassured the market he will turn the ship around if needed with monthly meetings (next meeting is scheduled for April 28)

And here’s what the market doesn’t like:

  • OPEC is trying to second-guess what demand will be in June, and with Covid-19 we know from experience that’s nearly impossible
  • Timespreads are selling off, and that means less backwardation, which in turn means fewer investors chasing yield
  • With everyone boosting production from May to July, I struggle to see better compliance, and actually we may see many countries cheating more

Judging by the jump in oil price, the positives outweigh the negatives.

END

8 EMERGING MARKET ISSUES

 
 
 
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 1.1737 UP .0010 REACTING TO MERKEL’S FAILED COALITION/ REACTING TO +GERMAN ELECTION WHERE ALT RIGHT PARTY ENTERS THE BUNDESTAG/ huge Deutsche bank problems ///ITALIAN CHAOS//CORONAVIRUS/PANDEMIC/TRUMP POSITIVE WITH VIRUS /AND NOW ECB TAPERING BOND PURCHASES/JAPAN TAPERING BOND PURCHASES /USA RISING INTEREST RATES /FLOODING/EUROPE BOURSES /ALL GREEN EXCEPT SPAIN

USA/JAPAN YEN 110.78 UP 0.024 (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 1.3783  DOWN   0.0003  (Brexit March 29/ 2019/ARTICLE 50 SIGNED/BREXIT FEES WILL BE CAPPED/

USA/CAN 1.2588 UP .0024 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  THURSDAY morning in Europe, the Euro ROSE BY 10 basis points, trading now ABOVE the important 1.08 level RISING to 1.1747 Last night Shanghai COMPOSITE UP 24,42 PTS OR 0.71% 

//Hang Sang CLOSED UP 560.39 PTS OR 1.97% 

/AUSTRALIA CLOSED UP 0.67%// EUROPEAN BOURSES ALL GREEN EXCEPT SPAIN

Trading from Europe and Asia

EUROPEAN BOURSES ALL GREEN EXCEPT SPAIN

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / :Hang Sang CLOSED UP 560.39 PTS OR 1.97% 

/SHANGHAI CLOSED UP 24.42 PTS OR 0.71% 

Australia BOURSE CLOSED UP 0.67% 

Nikkei (Japan) CLOSED UP 210.07  POINTS OR 0.72%

INDIA’S SENSEX  IN THE GREEN

Gold very early morning trading: 1684.00

silver:$24.02-

Early THURSDAY morning USA 10 year bond yield: 1.721% !!! DOWN 2 IN POINTS from WEDNESDAY’S night in basis points and it is trading WELL BELOW resistance at 2.27-2.32%.

The 30 yr bond yield 2.377 DOWN 4  IN BASIS POINTS from WEDNESDAY night.

USA dollar index early THURSDAY morning: 93.19 DOWN 4 CENT(S) from  WEDNESDAY’s close.

This ends early morning numbers THURSDAY MORNING

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And now your closing  THURSDAY NUMBERS 1: 00 PM

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 0.21% DOWN21 in basis point(s) yield from YESTERDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: +.12.%  UP 2   BASIS POINTS from YESTERDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/56

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 0.31%//DOWN 2 in basis point yield from yesterday.

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD:  0.64 DOWN 3 points in basis points yield from yesterday./

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 33 points higher than Spain.

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: FALLS TO –.32% IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY//

THE IMPORTANT SPREAD BETWEEN ITALIAN 10 YR BOND AND GERMAN 10 YEAR BOND IS 0.96% AND NOW ABOVE THE  THE 3.00% LEVEL WHICH WILL IMPLODE THE ENTIRE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM. AT 4% SPREAD THERE WILL BE A HUGE 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 1.1772 UP     .0045 or 45 basis points

USA/Japan: 110.568 UP .177 OR YEN DOWN 18  basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.3834 UP .0048 POUND UP 48  BASIS POINTS)

Canadian dollar UP 3 basis points to 1.2562

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The USA/Yuan,  CNY: closed    ON SHORE  (down).. 6.5653

THE USA/YUAN OFFSHORE:  6.750  (YUAN down)..6.5734

TURKISH LIRA:  8.13  EXTREMELY DANGEROUS LEVEL/DEATH WISH.

the 10 yr Japanese bond yield  at +0.12%

Your closing 10 yr US bond yield DOWN 7 IN basis points from WEDNESDAY at 1.678 % //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic USA 30 yr bond yield: 2.342 DOWN 7 in basis points on the day

Your closing USA dollar index, 92.93 DOWN 30  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 UP 23.67 OR  0.35%

German Dax :  CLOSED UP 98.83 POINTS OR 0.66%

Paris Cac CLOSED UP 35.73 POINTS 0.59%

Spain IBEX CLOSED DOWN 2.40 POINTS or 0.03%

Italian MIB: CLOSED UP  61.44 POINTS OR 0.25%

WTI Oil price; 60.92 12:00  PM  EST

Brent Oil: 64.18 12:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN /   RUBLE FALLS:    76.29  THE CROSS HIGHER BY 0.63 RUBLES/DOLLAR (RUBLE LOWER BY 63 BASIS PTS)

TODAY THE GERMAN YIELD FALLS  TO –.32 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 OILPRICE 4:30 PM : 61.19//

BRENT :  64.62

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: … 1.687..down 6 basis points…

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 2.341 down 7 basis points..

EURO/USA 1.1775 ( UP 48   BASIS POINTS)

USA/JAPANESE YEN:110.60 down .159 (YEN up 16 BASIS POINTS/..

USA DOLLAR INDEX: 92.90 down 33 cent(s)/

The British pound at 4 pm   Britain Pound/USA:1.3834 UP 38  POINTS

the Turkish lira close: 8.11

the Russian rouble 76.25   down 0.59 Roubles against the uSA dollar. (down 59 BASIS POINTS)

Canadian dollar:  1.2551  down  13 BASIS pts

German 10 yr bond yield at 5 pm: ,-0.32%

The Dow closed UP 171.66 POINTS OR 0.52%

NASDAQ closed UP 238.07 POINTS OR 1.82%


VOLATILITY INDEX:  17.38 CLOSED down 2.02

LIBOR 3 MONTH DURATION: 0.194%//libor dropping like a stone

USA trading today in Graph Form

Stocks, Bonds, Bullion, & Black Gold Bid As Q2 Starts With Dollar Dump

 

Another few trillion in spending malarkey…

…and the dollar dumps to start the quarter…

Source: Bloomberg

Which makes many wonder if this is the start of something bigger…

Source: Bloomberg

“You have meddled with the primary forces of nature, Mr Biden, and I won’t have it! Is that clear?

You are an old man who thinks in terms of nations and peoples. There are no nations. There are no peoples. There are no Russians. There are no Arabs. There are no Third Worlds. There is no West. There is only one holistic system of systems. One vast and immane, interwoven, interacting, multi-varied, multi-national dominion of dollars. Petro-dollars, electro-dollars, multi-dollars, reichmarks, rands, rubles, pounds and shekels.”

All major US equity indices rallied to start the 2nd quarter with S&P hitting a new record high, above 4,000 for the first time ever. Nasdaq and Small Caps outperformed, Dow lagged

Growth was aggressively bid to start the quarter (then went nowhere)…

Source: Bloomberg

VIX crashed to 14 month lows (below 18)…

Bonds were also bid to start the quarter but are very mixed on the week with 30Y -4bps and the belly +4bps

Source: Bloomberg

10Y yields have tumbled in the last three days, back below 1.70%…

Source: Bloomberg

If the equity market is right, bond yields are 30bps too high…

Source: Bloomberg

Bitcoin trod water today, back at pre-flash-crash levels…

Source: Bloomberg

Ethereum has significantly outperformed, now at new record highs…

Source: Bloomberg

Oil surged after the OPEC+ decision to increase output gradually – after chopping around all day – managing to run stops above $61…

Gold extended its gains as the dollar dumped…

Gold and Oil have recoupled with the upper end of their 40 year range…

Source: Bloomberg

Finally, we wonder what HY bonds know that stocks don’t?

Source: Bloomberg

a)Market trading/this morning/USA

b)MARKET TRADING/USA//THIS AFTERNOON

 
 

ii)Market data/USA

There Are Still Over 18 Million Americans Getting Government Jobless Benefits

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 08:36 AM

After mixed messages in last week’s claims data (low initial claims, record high pandemic continuing claims), analysts expected a further fall in first time jobless benefit seekers but were disappointed as claims rose from 684k the previous week to 719k last week.

Source: Bloomberg

Virginia and Kentucky saw the biggest rise in initial claims. Ohio saw the biggest drop in claims…

Continuing claims continue to slide towards pre-COVID levels, but in context, they remain dramatically higher. Pandemic emergency claims dipped but  remain near record highs…

Source: Bloomberg

The total number of Americans receiving some form of unemployment benefit from the US government remains above 18 million (18,213,575 – a decrease of 1,517,926 from the previous week)…

Source: Bloomberg

For context, there were 2,102,852 weekly claims filed for benefits in all programs in the comparable week in 2020.

Does this bode well for tomorrow’s payrolls (which some suggest could be a stunning 1.8 million job addition).

end

Soft data USA manufacturing surveys both Markit and ISM soar as supply chain disruptions spark surge in prices.

(zerohedge)

US Manufacturing Surveys Soar As Supply Chain Disruptions Spark Surge In Prices

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 10:04 AM

Despite tumbling ‘hard’ economic data, US Manufacturing survey data continues to suggest everything is awesome… almost as awesome as it has ever been.

  • Markit US Manufacturing PMI printed at 59.1 in final March data (meeting expectations) after dipping to 58.6 in February.

  • ISM Manufacturing crushed expectations with a 64.7 print (higher than the highest forecast, median forecast was 61.5)

Source: Bloomberg

This places the Markit survey near its record highs (and ISM at its highest since 1983)

Supply chain disruptions dominated narratives from survey respondents as manufacturers signalled the greatest deterioration in vendor performance since data collection began in May 2007.

Shortages of semiconductors have been particularly disruptive to the auto industry, where production in recent months has been restrained due to the lack of supply. On Wednesday, Ford Motor Co. announced it was idling plants that make its best-selling F-150 pickup truck because of chip shortages.

All of which has sent supplier delivery times significantly higher…

And that disruption – combined with stimulus-check-driven demand left prices paid at extreme highs…

“Widespread supply chain issues. Suppliers are struggling to manage demand and capacity in the face of chronic logistics and labor issues. No end in sight.” (Machinery)

Chris Williamson, Chief Business Economist at IHS Markit said:

March saw manufacturers struggle to cope with surging inflows of new orders. Although output continued to rise at a solid pace, capacity is being severely strained by the combination of soaring demand and supply chain disruptions: supply chain delays and backlogs of uncompleted orders are growing at rates unprecedented in the survey’s 14-year history, meaning inventories of finished goods are falling at a steep rate.

Pricing power has risen accordingly as demand outstrips supplyraw material prices are increasing at the sharpest rate for a decade and factory gate selling prices have risen to a degree not seen since at least 2007.

“The fastest rates of increase for both new orders and prices was reported among producers of consumer goods, as the arrival of stimulus cheques in the post added fuel to a marked upswing in demand as the economy continued to pull out of the malaise caused by the pandemic.

“With business expectations becoming even more optimistic in March, further strong production growth looks likely in the second quarter, but the big question will be whether rising price pressures also become more entrenched.”

But, hey, we shouldn’t worry – The Fed says it has everything under control and any inflationary impulse is transitory.

“Things are now out of control. Everything is a mess, and we are seeing wide-scale shortages.” (Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components)

Many readers may not recall, but one such instance of “transitory” inflation that proved to be anything but and led to the infamous Volcker Fed and its double digit rate hikes, was the price of oil which took off in the Arab oil embargo and then refused to come back for over a decade.

The Powell Fed, however, is eager to brush aside any analogues to previous episodes of runaway inflation which it sees as having a demand component, and merely ascribes what is taking place to unprecedented supply chain disruptions – i.e., collapse in supply – as a result of both the trade war with China and, more recently, the covid pandemic, which have unleashed chaos among traditional supply-chain intermediaries.

iii) Important USA Economic Stories

Now the fun begins as the Government draws down its cash to pay for the Biden 1.9 stimulus bill. The repo rate goes negative as does 30 day Treasury bills as their is basically no room to park these funds.  Let us see what happens on Monday

(zerohedge)

Fed’s “Most Important Rate” Falls For First Time Since February

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 11:20 AM

We previously pointed out that the ongoing flood of reserves and liquidity into the financial system, as the Treasury draws down its cash balance at the Fed to fund the latest Biden stimulus sending cash in the TGA account to just $1 trillion from $1.6 trillion a month ago…

… had hammered overnight and short-term rates, with G/C repo flipping between positive and negative for the past two weeks as the record reserve glut pushes short-term rates to zero and in some cases lower (of note, overnight G/C repo traded first traded at 0.02%, according to ICAP with a bid-ask spread 0.05%/0.03% in early morning trading).

One place where this pressure on short-term funding had been absent, was in what Bloomberg calls the Fed’s “most important rate”, the Effective Fed Funds rate. That changed today, when after more than a month at 0.07%, the Fed Funds rate dipped to 0.06%…

… the result of not only continued pressure on the short-end, but also due to quarter-end window dressing…

… which saw a jump in Fed Reverse Repo facility usage to $134.3BN. That said, usage of the Fed’s overnight reverse repo facility will tumble on Thursday as is customary once quarter-end window dressing is unwound.

As ICAP further notes, market participants had been waiting for a drop in fed funds because “it could signal that the central bank would have to adjust its interest on excess reserves or RRP rates to maintain control of short-term rates.”

Meanwhile, Treasury bills maturing the next three months are yielding between -0.013% and 0.015%.1

END

ARCHEGOS

The mess at ArchegoS explained through the eyes of Wolf Richter

(zerohedge)

Archegos Implosion is a Sign of Massive Stock Market Leverage that Stays Hidden until it Blows Up and Hits the Banks

by Wolf Richter • Mar 29, 2021 • 201 Comments

by Wolf Richter •  • 

Banks, as prime brokers and counterparties to the hedge fund, are eating multi-billion-dollar losses as they try to get out of these secretive stock derivative positions.

By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET:

The implosion of an undisclosed hedge fund, now widely reported to be Archegos Capital Management, is hitting the stocks of banks that served as prime brokers to the fund. The highly leveraged derivative positions, based on stocks, had blown up spectacularly. Banks get into these risky leveraged deals because they generate enormous amounts of profit – until they blow up and banks get hit as counterparties.

Credit Suisse [CS] is down 13% at the moment in US trading after it warned this morning that “a significant US-based hedge fund defaulted on margin calls made last week by Credit Suisse and certain other banks,” and that it and “a number of other banks are in the process of exiting these positions,” and that the loss resulting from this exit “could be highly significant and material to our first quarter results.” The bank deemed it “premature to quantify” the loss.

Nomura Holdings [NMR] is down 14% at the moment in US trading after it warned this morning that “an event occurred that could subject one of its US subsidiaries to a significant loss arising from transactions with a US client.” It estimated the loss from this one client at “approximately $2 billion, based on market prices as of March 26.”

As Credit Suisse pointed out, “a number of other banks” are also involved as counterparties to that one unnamed hedge fund, and have been trying to get out of these positions since last week.

Deutsche Bank got out of its positions unscathed, according to a spokesman, cited by the Wall Street Journal, perhaps because it was properly hedged: “We are managing down the immaterial remaining client positions, on which we do not expect to incur any loss,” he said.

Last week, Archegos – which manages the wealth of former Tiger Asia manager Bill Hwang and his family – received margin calls from these banks that forced it to liquidate its positions. Last week alone, not counting the liquidations today, sales approached $30 billion, according to sources of the Wall Street Journal.

In a margin call, the broker as lender demands that the client put up more collateral if the price of a leveraged position has dropped sharply. If the client fails to do that, the lender will sell the securities to recover the amount owed. But in this case, the sale of the collateral wasn’t nearly enough to cover what is owed, and the banks eat the losses.

Heavily involved in these liquidations were the American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) of Chinese companies, such as Baidu, GSX Techedu, Tencent Music, and shares of US media companies such as Discovery and ViacomCBS. And their shares, after skyrocketing since last March, collapsed.

ViacomCBS [VIAC] has collapsed by 54% in five trading days, including today. But after the ludicrous surge – quadrupling between early August and March 22, and multiplying by 10 since the March 2020 low, amid general market mania – shares are now back where they’d been only two months ago…

The forced liquidations became apparent last week with the sale of huge blocks of shares, including shares of Discovery and ViacomCBS, by Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley and other banks, amid swirling rumors that a hedge fund had collapsed.

The positions “may have topped $50 billion,” but those weren’t actual stocks, but derivatives based on stocks, called Contracts for Difference (CFD), and Archegos may have never owned any of the underlying stocks, according to Bloomberg this morning, citing people familiar with the matter. The size of the fund remains unclear, but before all this transpired, it was estimated to have grown to $5 billion to $10 billion, by riding these leveraged trades to the top.

It is also unclear what remains of the fund at this point, but one thing we already know: Some of the losses were eaten by the banks.

A CFD is a contract between the trader, such as Archegos, and the broker such as Credit Suisse, Nomura, Goldman Sachs, etc. It’s a type of equity swap. Leverage can be huge, and trading is opaque and does not involve an exchange, but takes place between the trader and the broker or a market maker or between parties. In the US, CFDs are illegal for retail traders, but not for hedge funds.

The fact that Archegos’ positions were derivatives, rather than actual stocks, allowed it to build large stakes – some of them giving it exposure to over 10% to these companies’ shares – without having to disclose those stakes to regulators, which it would have had to do with regular stock positions of that magnitude. This allowed Archegos’ exposure to those shares to remain anonymous until the trades blew up.

The secretive nature of these trades had the effect that the prime brokers to the fund, such as Credit Suisse, didn’t know about the large-scale involvement of other prime brokers, such as Nomura, Deutsche Bank, and Goldman Sachs. And when they figured it out, it was too late. And last week, when the forced selling started, each prime broker wasn’t alone in unwinding the positions but was doing so against the other prime brokers trying to do the same thing.

This blowup is one more sign of just how much leverage has been built up during this market mania, and how exposed investment banks are to this leverage. How many more hedge funds need to blow up before the banks, in their role as prime brokers to these hedge funds, are beginning to sing the blues, while trying to get out of a myriad of positions?

That the stock market leverage is huge – after a year of central-bank money printing that blew away all prior records – became clear with the only timely measure of stock market leverage that we have, margin debt. It only covers a small part of the overall stock market leverage, but it is reported monthly, unlike the other forms of stock market leverage that are not reported at all, or are reported piecemeal by brokers in their annual reports, or are only reported when they blow up.

And Margin debt, ladies and gentlemen, jumped in a historic manner, by 50% from a year ago, the most ever, to the most ever. Read… Stock Market Leverage Spikes in Historic Manner: Another WTF Chart of a Zoo that Has Gone Nuts

Enjoy reading WOLF STREET and want to support it? Using ad blockers – I totally get why – but want to support the site? You can donate. I appreciate it immensely. Click on the beer and iced-tea mug to find out how:

end

Ford Warns Of Continued Production Halts Through Mid-April As Chip Shortage Worsens

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 02:00 PM

Ford Motor Company has already begun another round of production halts for two major truck plants in North America as the global shortage of semiconductors worsens. 

WSJ reports the American carmaker said Wednesday it would suspend production for two weeks in April at its truck plant in Dearborn, Michigan. At its Kansas City, Missouri truck factory, the company announced production suspensions for up to a week. There are also preparations to reduce work shifts temporarily and eliminate additional overtime shifts at several other factories. 

The impact of the chip shortage is nothing new to Ford. In February, the company announced it would continue to produce its top-selling F-150 trucks and Edge SUVs without specific semiconductor components. Now it appears some of those production lines are extending production halts a month later. 

Ford has previously stated the chip shortage could lower its earnings by at least $1 billion $2.5 billion this year. Ford reaffirmed its guidance this week but is expected to provide a more in-depth report on the semiconductor shortage when it publishes quarterly results on April 28.

A Ford spokeswoman told WSJ the latest production halts at various plants will place affected factory workers on “layoff status during the downtime.” 

The continued disruption at Ford underlines the shortage of semiconductors has worsened, which may jeopardize specific industries’ recoveries. 

Readers may recall the shortage originated from a confluence of factors as carmakers shuttered plants during the virus pandemic last year. At the same time, lockdowns spurred remote working and increased demand for chips for consumer electronics. Sanctions against Chinese tech companies have also made the situation even worse. 

Ford is not the only automobile manufacturer in North America experiencing production woes tied to the shortage. Stellantis NV, the maker of Ram, Jeep, and Chrysler said last week that production halts at some of it plants will continue through mid-April due to lack of chips. Honda Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. are others that idled their plants in March due to shortages. General Motors expects lost production could crush its pretax profits by $2 billion this year. 

Meanwhile, some carmakers’ shares have more than doubled in the last year on economic recovery hopes and prospects for electric vehicles. However, the current chip shortage threatens the global recovery. 

“It is a serious issue for the entire industry so everybody is suffering at the same measure,” said Nesche Yazgan, senior corporate analyst at BlueBay Asset Management. “This is especially relevant for the automotive industry since they have had the ‘longest’ chain with parts being delivered from different geographies.”

Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities estimates the shortage would reduce global vehicle production by 1.5 million units this year.

iv) Swamp commentaries

They are trying to frame Matt Gaetz..

(Simonson/Washington Examiner)

Documents Detail Wild Alleged $25M Gaetz Extortion Scheme

 
WEDNESDAY, MAR 31, 2021 – 06:20 PM

Authored by Joseph Simonson and Emily Brooks via the Washington Examiner

Rep. Matt Gaetz possesses text message screenshots, an email, and a typed document that purportedly support his claims that a federal investigation into his relationship with a 17-year-old is related to an extortion scheme against him.

On Tuesday, the New York Times reported that the Justice Department is investigating whether Gaetz had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old and paid her to travel with him. Gaetz has called the report “totally false.” Gaetz told Axios that his lawyers told him that he “was not a target but a subject of an investigation regarding sexual conduct with women.”

The Florida Republican countered the report on Twitter and in statements to Axios and Fox News with a claim that his family is being extorted for $25 million and that the people pushing stories about an investigation into his relationships with women are the people extorting him and the subjects of an FBI extortion investigation over the last few weeks.

The documents in Gaetz’s possession detail an alleged scheme that revolves around attempts by former Air Force intelligence officer Bob Kent and Beggs & Lane attorney David McGee, a former federal prosecutor, to free ex-FBI agent-turned-private investigator Robert Levinson from imprisonment in Iran.

Levinson went missing in Iran in March 2007. McGee is the attorney for the Levinson family. Kent in December 2018 had planned a secret mission to try to rescue Levinson, but he was reportedly thwarted by the federal government.

Screenshots provided to the Washington Examiner show a message that his father, Don Gaetz, a former Florida state Senate president, said he received from Kent on March 16. The message proposes “a plan that can make [Matt Gaetz’s] future legal and political problems go away.” Gaetz has denied any relationship with a minor.

Despite the family members of Levinson saying in March 2020 that they presumed him to be dead based on information given by U.S. officials, the alleged message from Kent said he had located Levinson in Iran and has two “proof of life videos.” Kent also requested the Gaetz family’s help returning Levinson in exchange for giving Matt Gaetz credit for the operation and promising a presidential pardon for unnamed legal issues.

The next day, on March 17, Don Gaetz purportedly met with Kent, and Kent handed him a three-page document outlining “Project Homecoming.” That document detailed a plan to save Levinson at the cost of a $25 million loan.

In 1983, Don Gaetz co-founded VITAS Healthcare, and in 2004, he and his co-founders reportedly sold their stock in the company for $406 million.

In the Project Homecoming document, Kent then asked that the loan should be deposited in the trust account of Beggs & Land, naming David L. McGee, and deposited no later than March 19.

The Project Homecoming document states that Gaetz is “under investigation by the FBI for various public corruption and public integrity issues” and alleges that the FBI is aware of photos depicting Gaetz in a “sexual orgy with underage prostitutes.”

“In exchange for the funds being arranged, and upon the release of Mr. Levinson, the team that delivers Mr. Levinson to the President of The United States shall strongly advocate that President Biden issue a Presidential Pardon, or instruct the Department of Justice to terminate any and all investigations involving Congressman Gaetz,” the document reads.

 

Provided to the Washington Examiner

It also implied that the White House has some knowledge of the plan: “The team has been assured by the President that he will strongly consider such matters because he considers the release of Robert Levinson a matter of National Urgency.” The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Stephen M. Alford, who has previously faced fraud and extortion charges, was also allegedly at the March 17 meeting and gave Don Gaetz his business card showing Captum Consultants. The April 2020 articles of incorporation for the company indicate they came from Beggs & Land, McGee’s firm.

 

Provided to the Washington Examiner

Kent, McGee, and Alford did not respond to requests for comment.

McGee told the Daily Beast on Tuesday night, following Gaetz naming him on national television, that any claims that he or his law firm were involved in extortion are “completely, totally false,” adding, “This is a blatant attempt to distract from the fact that Matt Gaetz is apparently about to be indicted for sex trafficking underage girls.”

Another email chain appears to confirm the existence of the FBI investigating extortion claims.

“My client, Don Gaetz, was approached by two individuals to make a sizable payment in what I would call a scheme to defraud,” Jeffrey Neiman said in a March 25 email to the Department of Justice. “The FBI is not asking Don to voluntarily and proactively assist in their investigation, which Don is willing to do. Please confirm that your Office and the FBI would like Don’s assistance in this matter and that he will be working at the Government’s request.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney David Goldberg responded: “I can confirm that your client is working with my office as well as the FBI at the government’s request in order to determine if a federal crime has been committed. This has been discussed with, and approved by, the FBI as well as the leadership of my office and components of Main Justice.”

The Department of Justice and the FBI declined to comment on the email or the existence of an extortion investigation. Neiman also declined to comment.

 

Provided to the Washington Examiner

Gaetz on Fox News Tuesday night said his father wore a wire in order to assist with the case, and he demanded that the “Department of Justice and the FBI release the audio recordings that were made under their supervision and at their direction, which will prove my innocence.”

He suspects that a leak to the New York Timesstory about the investigation into whether he had a relationship with a 17-year-old was timed to thwart the FBI investigation into the extortion.

“This former Department of Justice official tomorrow was supposed to be contacted by my father so that specific instructions could be given regarding the wiring of $4.5 million as a down payment on this bribe,” Gaetz said. “I don’t think it’s a coincidence that tonight, somehow, the New York Times is leaking this information, smearing me, and ruining the investigation that would likely result in one of the former colleagues of the current DOJ being brought to justice for trying to extort me and my family.”

The 17-year-old in question “doesn’t exist,” Gaetz said, adding that he has “not had a relationship with a 17-year-old. That is totally false.”

READ: FULL DOCUMENTS MATT GAETZ SAYS BACKS UP EXTORTION CLAIM

Jerry Dunleavy contributed to this story.

end

Meet the FBI official in charge of verifying the Steele dossier:  He could not corroborate anything..not one piece of evidence on Trump. This has been revealed through new declassified documents

(Paul Sperry/RealClearInvestigations) 

Meet The Russiagate Prober Who Couldn’t Verify Anything In Steele Dossier, Yet Said Nothing For Years

 
WEDNESDAY, MAR 31, 2021 – 11:00 PM

Authored by Paul Sperry via RealClearInvestigations,

For the past four years, Democrats and the Washington media have suspended disbelief about the Steele dossier’s credibility by arguing that some Russia allegations against Donald Trump and his advisers have been corroborated and therefore the most explosive charges may also be true. But recently declassified secret testimony by the FBI official in charge of corroborating the dossier blows up that narrative.

The top analyst assigned to the FBI’s Russia “collusion” case, codenamed Crossfire Hurricane, admitted under oath that neither he nor his team of half a dozen intelligence analysts could confirm any of the allegations in the dossier — including ones the FBI nonetheless included in several warrant applications as evidence to establish legal grounds to electronically monitor a former Trump adviser for almost a year.

FBI Supervisory Intelligence Analyst Brian Auten made the admission under questioning by staff investigators for the Senate Judiciary Committee during closed-door testimony in October. The committee only this year declassified the transcript, albeit with a number of redactions including the name of Auten, who was identified by congressional sources who spoke on condition of anonymity.

“So with respect to the Steele reporting,” Auten told the committee, “the actual allegations and the actions described in those reports could not be corroborated.”

After years of digging, Auten conceded that the only material in the dossier that he could verify was information that was already publicly available, such as names, entities, and positions held by persons mentioned in the document.

His testimony, kept secret for several months, is eye-opening because it’s the first time anybody from the FBI has acknowledged headquarters failed to verify any of the dossier evidence supporting the wiretaps as true and correct.

As one of the FBI’s leading experts on Russia, Auten was highly familiar with the subject matter of the dossier and the Russian players it cited. He also had a team of intelligence analysts at his disposal to pore over the material and chase down leads. They even traveled overseas to interview the dossier’s author, former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, and other sources.

 

Rendezvous with Russians? The FBI early on debunked this claim about Trump’s attorney (below right).

Still, they could not corroborate any of the allegations of Trump-Russia “collusion” in the dossier, and actually debunked many of them — including the rumor, oft-repeated by the media, that Trump attorney Michael Cohen flew to Prague in the summer of 2016 to secretly huddle with Kremlin agents over an alleged Trump-Russia plot to hack the election. They determined that Cohen had never even been to the Czech Republic.

Yet Auten and his Crossfire teammates — who referred to the dossier as “Crown material,” as if it were valuable intelligence from America’s closest ally, Britain — never informed a secret surveillance court that the dossier was a bust. Instead, they used it as the basis for all four warrant applications to spy on Carter Page, a tangential 2016 Trump campaign adviser. Former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, who personally signed and approved the final application, has testified that without the dossier, the warrants could not have been obtained.

 

Micheal Cohen: The dubious Prague rumor lived on in the media for years.
AP/John Minchillo

Financed by the Hillary Clinton campaign in 2016 as opposition research against Trump, the dossier was used by the FBI to obtain Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court warrants to eavesdrop on Page from October 2016 to September 2017. A U.S. citizen, Page was accused of being a Russian agent, even though he previously assisted both the CIA and FBI in their efforts to hold Moscow in check. He was never charged with a crime and at least half the warrants have since been invalidated by the court. Page is now suing the FBI, as well as Auten, among other individual defendants, and is seeking a total of $75 million in damages.

The bureau’s handling of the warrants is part of Special Counsel John Durham’s ongoing investigation into the government’s targeting of Trump and his campaign during the election, and later, the Trump presidency. In January, Durham secured a criminal conviction against top Crossfire lawyer Kevin Clinesmith for falsifying evidence against Page to help justify the last warrant issued in June 2017.

It could not be ascertained whether Durham has interviewed Auten — a spokesman did not return messages — but Auten has hired one of the top white-collar criminal defense lawyers in Washington. And former federal law enforcement officials say Auten is certainly on Durham’s witness list.

 

Andrew McCabe: The former acting FBI boss has testified that without the dossier, spy warrants could not have been obtained. AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File

“That analyst needs to be investigated,” said former assistant FBI director and prosecutor Chris Swecker, noting that Auten is a central, if overlooked, figure in the FISA abuse scandal — and one who attended several meetings with McCabe in the Durham case. In fact, the 52-year-old analyst shows up at every major juncture in the Crossfire investigation.

Auten, who did not respond to requests for comment directly or through his lawyer, was assigned to the case from its opening in July 2016 and supervised its analytical efforts, including researching other members of the Trump campaign who might serve as possible targets in addition to Page. He played a key supportive role for the agents preparing the FISA applications, including reviewing the probable-cause section of the applications and providing the agents with information about the sub-sources noted in the applications, and even drafting some of the language that ended up in the affidavits to spy on Page. He also helped prepare and review the FISA renewal drafts.

A 15-year FBI veteran, Auten assisted the case agents in providing information on the reliability of FBI informant Steele and his sources and reviewing for accuracy their information cited in the body of the applications, as well as the footnotes. He also sifted through the emails, text messages and phone calls the FBI collected from the wiretaps on Page. He met with top Crossfire officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, briefed McCabe and then-FBI Director James Comey, and even ran meetings with case agents and analysts regarding the election-year investigation, which he testified “was done as a ‘headquarters special.’ “

 

Christopher Steele: Personally met with Auten. (Victoria Jones/PA via AP)

In addition, Auten personally met with Steele and his “primary sub-source,” a Russian emigre living in the U.S., as well as former British intelligence colleagues of Steele. Auten also met with former Justice Department official Bruce Ohr and processed the material Ohr fed the FBI from Glenn Simpson, the political opposition research contractor who hired Steele to compile the anti-Trump dossier on behalf of the Clinton campaign. He was involved in key source interviews where David Laufman and other top Justice officials were present, and shows up on critical email chains with these officials, who are also subjects of interest in the Durham probe.

Auten also attended meetings of a mysterious top-secret interagency entity, believed to have been overseen and budgeted by then-CIA Director John Brennan, known as the “Crossfire Hurricane Fusion Center,” or the Fusion Cell. Finally, it was Auten who provided analytical support to Special Counsel Robert Mueller when he took over the Crossfire case in May 2017. He brought his team of six analysts with him to Mueller’s office.

 

Instead of disqualifying the dossier as evidence, Auten let its fictions go into FISA applications.

As early as January 2017, Auten discovered that the dossier was larded with errors, misspellings, factual inaccuracies, conflicting accounts and wild rumors, according to a Justice Department inspector general report on the FISA abuses. Instead of disqualifying the dossier as evidence, the report found he let its unsubstantiated innuendo go into the FISA applications.

Auten gave Steele the benefit of the doubt when sources or developments called into question the reliability of his information or his own credibility, according to the same inspector general’s report. In many cases, he acted more as an advocate than a fact-checker, while turning a blind eye to the dossier’s red flags, the report documented.

For example, when a top Justice national security lawyer initially blocked the Crossfire team’s attempts to obtain a FISA warrant, Auten proactively turned to the dossier to try to push the case over the line. In a September 2016 email to FBI lawyers, he forwarded an unsubstantiated claim from the dossier that Page secretly met with Kremlin-tied official Igor Divyekin in July 2016 and asked, “Does this put us at least *that* much closer to a full FISA on [Carter Page]?” (Asterisks for emphasis in the original.)

 

Carter Page: In an FBI spreadsheet, Auten cited a Yahoo News article as possible corroboration of “Page’s alleged meeting with Divyekin” — even though the source of that article was Christopher Steele himself.
AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin

Senate investigators grilled Auten about his eager acceptance of the allegation, which Page had denied in secretly recorded conversations with an undercover FBI informant — exculpatory evidence that was withheld from the FISA court. Auten confessed he had no other information to independently verify the dossier’s charge, which was central to the FISA warrants.

In a declassified internal FBI spreadsheet he compiled in January 2017 to try to corroborate the dossier, Auten cited a September 2016 Yahoo News article as possible corroboration of “Page’s alleged meeting with Divyekin” — even though the source of that article was Steele himself.

“So you had no knowledge of a secret meeting between Divyekin and Page, but you thought this information ‘put us at least that much closer to a full FISA’ on Carter Page?” then-chief Senate Judiciary Committee investigative counsel Zach Somers asked Auten, incredulously. “Why does the mention of a meeting with Page and Divyekin move you ‘that much closer’ to a FISA application if you haven’t confirmed the information in the Steele dossier?” 

“There was something about Divyekin,” Auten said. “That’s all I can say.”

In the secret informant recordings, which were made before the Crossfire team submitted its first FISA warrant application in October 2016, Page stated he never met with Divyekin or even knew who he was.

“Were you aware of his statements denying knowing who Divyekin was?” Somers asked Auten. “I don’t recall exactly whether or not I knew those statements at the time or whether I learned about those statements subsequent to that time,” Auten replied.

“Do you think you learned about them prior to the first Page FISA application?” Somers persisted. “I’m not sure if I learned them before the first Page application,” Auten answered.

Former FBI Special Agent Michael Biasello, a 25-year veteran of the FBI who spent 10 years in counterintelligence working closely with intelligence analysts, said Auten should be “held accountable” for his role in what he described as FBI headquarters’ blatant disregard for the diligent process FISA warrants demand.

“A FISA warrant must be fully corroborated. Every statement, phrase, paragraph, must be verified in order for the affiant to attest before a judge that the contents are true and correct,” he said. “I remember agents and analysts scouring warrants and affidavits obsessively to make certain the document was meticulous and accurate.”

“To think the Crossfire team signed off on those FISA affidavits knowing the contents were uncorroborated is unconscionable, immoral and also illegal,” Biasello added. “All of them must be prosecuted for perjury, fraud and other federal crimes.”

The Spreadsheet  

Auten oversaw the early 2017 creation of a 94-page FBI spreadsheet that analyzed the credibility of the Steele dossier, excerpt by excerpt. 

At first blush, the spreadsheet appears to corroborate some of the rumors. But upon closer inspection, the analysis relies heavily on media reports as the chief pieces of confirmation. The press citations, which number in the hundreds, are used in lieu of official corroboration.

Listed under a section titled “Corroboration,” the spreadsheet repeatedly cites stories published in the Washington Post, the New York Times, and CNN, as well as more overtly anti-Trump outlets like the Huffington Post and Mother Jones. It twice used the same Yahoo News story to corroborate separate Steele allegations, despite the fact Steele was the main source for the article. (During the 2016 campaign, Steele had briefed Yahoo author Michael Isikoff on his opposition research for about an hour in a private room at the Tabard Inn in Washington.)

Auten and his FBI analysts used a magazine article written by the sister of Democratic National Committee contractor Alexandra “Ali” Chalupa — a key promoter of the Trump collusion narrative during the 2016 election — as possible support for Steele’s lurid claim (later debunked) that Trump was compromised by a Russian sex tape.

RealClearInvestigations has learned exclusively that the spreadsheet glosses over one of the most glaring factual errors in the dossier — that Moscow allegedly paid DNC hackers through a Russian consulate in Miami. For starters, there is no Russian consulate in Miami. But Auten and his analysts remained silent about the reference to a phantom Miami consulate. It was never addressed in the nearly 100-page spreadsheet. Highlighting that gaffe might have exposed the shoddiness of the entire case.

In the end, Auten never confirmed anything from Steele’s rumor sheet the FBI cited as probable-cause evidence in its requests to obtain warrants. To the contrary, he “ultimately determined that some of the allegations contained in Steele’s election reporting were inaccurate,” the IG report revealed, although he kept those discoveries from the court.

Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz singled out the lead analyst in his 2019 report for cutting a number of corners in the verification process and even allowing information he knew to be incorrect to slip into the FISA affidavits and mislead the court.

For instance, Auten learned as early as January 2017 that Steele’s primary source, Igor Danchenko, lived in the United States, not Russia; yet Auten and the Crossfire team led the FISA court to believe he was “Russian-based” – and therefore presumably more credible. As RCI first reported, Danchenko was a hard-drinking gossip who had worked for the Brookings Institution, a Democratic Party think tank. It turns out the anti-Trump rumors he fed Steele — in exchange for cash — was dubious hearsay passed along over drinks with his high school buddies and an old girlfriend.

“The FISA applications all say that he’s Russian-based,” Somers pressed Auten. “Do you think that should have been corrected with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court?”

Auten said he raised the issue with Clinesmith, the convicted FBI lawyer. “And what response did you get back?” Somers asked. “I did not get a response back,” Auten replied.

And so the “Russian-based” deception lived on through the FISA renewals. The FBI continued to use the Steele rumor sheet as a basis for renewing its FISA monitoring of Page — and by extension, potentially the Trump campaign and presidency — through incidental collections of emails, text messages and intercepted phone calls. (FISAs let the FBI snoop not only on the target of the warrant, but also anyone communicating with the target and the target’s associates.)

Perhaps most telling, Auten also withheld the fact Danchenko disavowed key allegations Steele put in the dossier.

No Regrets, No Remorse

Nonetheless, Auten appeared unbothered by the myriad problems with the dossier.

He told Horowitz that he did not have any “pains or heartburn” over the accuracy of the Steele reports. As for Steele’s reliability as an FBI informant, Horowitz said, the analyst merely “speculated” that his prior reporting was sound and did not see a need to “dig into” his handler’s case file, which showed that past tips from Steele had gone uncorroborated and were never used in court. In a September 2016 memo used in the FISA applications to describe Steele’s credibility as a source, Auten falsely claimed Steele’s prior material had been corroborated.

According to the IG report, Auten also wasn’t concerned about Steele’s animus for Trump or that he was paid by Trump’s political opponent, calling the fact he was paid by the Clinton’s campaign “immaterial.” Under Senate grilling, Auten confirmed the fact-checking lapses highlighted by Horowitz, but remained unrepentant.

He insisted, “It was justified to open these cases” — not only against Carter Page, but also Trump advisers Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, and George Papadopoulos — even while revealing that he and his analysts discussed taking out “professional liability insurance” policies because they worried the irregular Crossfire investigation “would likely result in extra scrutiny.”

FBI Director Christopher Wray has kept Auten in his job at the bureau, where he continues to work at headquarters as a supervisory intelligence analyst. The FBI provided him counsel at his private Senate hearing.

Wray has assured Horowitz he’s conducting a review of all FBI personnel who had responsibility for the preparation of the invalid FISA warrant applications and would take any appropriate action to deal with them for misconduct. It’s not immediately known if Auten has undergone such an internal review. The FBI declined comment.

end

Cuomo Ordered Aides To Conceal Nursing Home Death Numbers While He Negotiated $4M Book Deal: NYT

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 01:20 PM

Nearly a dozen women have accused Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexually inappropriate behavior, including his most recent accuser, Sherry Vill, who said became at least the second woman to accuse Cuomo of kissing her without consent – and she had the receipts.

And as Dems seize upon recent revelations about allegations against Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz to try and change the subject away from Cuomo, who appears likely to hang on at least until the end of his current (and third) term, more reports of nefarious behavior about Cuomo have emerged overnight.

Late yesterday, the NYT reported that the governor was busy trawling for a $4MM deal for a book about Cuomo’s “pandemic leadership lessons” while several of his aides were feeding deliberately false data to the DoJ and suppressing a Health Department report that threatened to disclose a far higher number of nursing home deaths. Unsurprisingly, Cuomo’s spokespeople denied the report. But there’s no denying that Cuomo published “America’s Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic” in October. Cuomo was working on the book as early as mid-June.

The implication, of course, is that Cuomo did everything he could to delay publication of the higher nursing-home death toll number until he had received the advance for his book.

The embarrassing number was initially supposed to be featured in the second sentence of the report, but top Cuomo aide Melissa DeRosa managed to get it removed from the final version.

An impending Health Department report threatened to disclose a far higher number of nursing home deaths related to the coronavirus than the Cuomo administration had previously made public. Ms. DeRosa and other top aides expressed concern about the higher death toll, and, after their intervention, the number – which had appeared in the second sentence of the report – was removed from the final version.

The revisions occurred as the governor was on the brink of a huge payoff: a book deal that ended with a high offer of more than $4 million, according to people with knowledge of the book’s bidding process.

The NYT even speculated that Cuomo violated laws prohibiting using state resources (including staffers paid by the state) for personal gain, but Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi insisted “every effort was made to ensure that no state resources were used in connection with this project.” Of course, that’s not an outright denial. And according to the NYT “a top aide to the governor, Stephanie Benton, twice asked assistants to print portions of the draft of the book, and deliver them to Mr. Cuomo at the Executive Mansion in Albany, where he lives.”

Emails and an early draft of Mr. Cuomo’s book obtained by The New York Times indicate that the governor was writing it as early as mid-June, relying on a cadre of trusted aides and junior staffers for everything from full-scale edits to minor clerical work, potentially running afoul of state laws prohibiting use of public resources for personal gain.

One aide to the governor, speaking on the condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation, said that she and others were also asked to assist in typing or transferring notes for Mr. Cuomo’s book, which he composed in part by dictating into a cellphone.

“Sorry lady can u print this too and put in a binder,” Ms. Benton wrote to another female staffer on July 5, a Sunday. “And drop at mansion.”

Cuomo aide Melissa DeRosa played a critical role in development of the book, and the July 6 Department of Health report that basically cleared Cuomo and his administration of wrongdoing regarding its handling of nursing homes. Of course, we now know that couldn’t be further from the truth, as the governor failed to stop hospitals from sending COVID-infected patients back to nursing homes, accelerating the spread and leading to more than 15K deaths. Earlier drafts of the DoH report seen by the NYT show the edits demanded by DeRosa very clearly omitted the fatality figures.

In two earlier drafts of the report, which were both reviewed by The Times, the second sentence said that “from March 1, 2020, through June 10, 2020, there were 9,844 fatalities among NYS nursing home residents with confirmed or suspected COVID-19.”

The earlier drafts were written by Eleanor Adams, a top state epidemiologist, and Jim Malatras, a former Cuomo aide who now serves as chancellor of the State University of New York system. The 9,844 death total was far higher than the 6,432 nursing home deaths used in the state’s final report, which continued the state’s practices of omitting the deaths of nursing home residents who died at the hospital.

Azzopardi said the July 6 report was supposed to examine whether the administration’s policies “contributed to increased deaths, and not be a full accounting” of all nursing home residents who died. Cuomo has said he would donate some of his book profits to charity, though he hasn’t said how much. Earlier this week, reports confirmed that top state public health officials paid several in-person visits to Cuomo’s brother, CNN anchor Chris Cuomo, while he suffered from COVID during the early weeks of the outbreak.

end

What has taken them so long: Grassley and Johnson seek intelligence records on Hunter biden’s business associates.

Isabel Van Brugen/EpochTimes

Grassley, Johnson Seek Intel Records On Hunter Biden’s Chinese Business Associates

 
THURSDAY, APR 01, 2021 – 02:59 PM

Authored by Isabel van Brugen via The Epoch Times,

Two Republican senators are asking the Department of Justice (DOJ) and intelligence community for any and all intelligence records tied to foreign nationals with links to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) who had business dealings with Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden.

In their letter (pdf) to the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) and DOJ Attorney General, Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), ranking member of the HSGAC Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, noted that they have been reviewing financial transactions and connections between and among members of the Biden family and foreign nationals connected to the CCP, including its military and intelligence services.

On Sept. 23, 2020, the senators released a report (pdf) that revealed millions of dollars in “questionable financial transactions” between Hunter Biden and his associates and foreign individuals, including the wife of the former mayor of Moscow and individuals with ties to the CCP.

Of particular concern, the GOP senators wrote in their letter, Hunter Biden had a “close and personal relationship” with Ye Jianming, a Chinese oil tycoon whose company, CEFC China Energy Co. (CEFC), sought oil drilling rights in Chad and Uganda. Ye reportedly had links to the communist regime’s People’s Liberation Army.

The president’s son also had a close association with Ye’s business associates, Gongwen Dong and Chi Ping “Patrick” Ho, the senators wrote.

It’s imperative that Congress better understand the relationship Ye Jianming, Gongwen Dong, and Patrick Ho had between and among themselves, with the communist Chinese government, CEFC China Energy, and their activities in the United States, including those relating to the Biden family. Accordingly, please produce all intelligence records, including but not limited to, all FISA-derived information relating to these three individuals no later than April 14, 2021.”

Former Vice President Joe Biden kisses his grandson held by son Hunter Biden after delivering remarks in Wilmington, Delaware, on Nov. 7, 2020. (Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images)

Hunter Biden attracted scrutiny during last year’s election season after a former business partner disclosed to media outlets a trove of text messages, some of which demonstrated his close ties to Ye. Other messages suggested the president was aware of his son’s business activity, although then-candidate Biden denied knowledge of his son’s dealings.

The revelations prompted concern about foreign influence on U.S. policy.

Federal investigators are currently probing Hunter Biden’s “tax affairs,” including reportedly his business dealings with China. While he also holds a stake in a Chinese private equity firm, the White House press secretary said earlier this month that the younger Biden “has been working to unwind his investment.”

When “Patrick” Ho was charged by the DOJ in 2017, he reportedly phoned Joe Biden’s brother, James, who has said that he believed the call was for Hunter Biden.

A three-judge panel of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, New York, found (pdf) that Ho was properly convicted by a federal jury in December 2018 of paying bribes to the presidents of Chad and Uganda in a United Nations-linked conspiracy.

Chi Ping Patrick Ho sentenced in a bribery trial by District Judge Loretta Preska in New York, on March 25, 2019. (Reuters/Jane Rosenberg)

Ye, meanwhile, hasn’t been seen since being taken into custody by Chinese authorities in early 2018.

Grassley and Johnson asked the DOJ and the Office of the DNI to send “all unclassified material directly to the Committees.”

“If any of the responsive documents do contain classified information, please segregate all unclassified material within the classified documents, provide all unclassified information directly to the Committees, and provide a classified addendum to the Office of Senate Security,” the senators added.

The president has said that he won’t interfere in any of the DOJ probes.

end

v) King report/Courtesy of Chris Powell of GATA which includes the major swamp stories./ of the day

Biden Unveils $2 Trillion Infrastructure and Jobs Plan
The investments would be paid for over 15 years by increasing the corporate tax rate to 28% from 21%, raising taxes on companies’ foreign income to 21% from 10.5%, and replacing much of the international tax structure signed into law by former President Donald Trump…
    Specifically, the plan would modernize 20,000 miles of roadway, fix 10,000 bridges, build 500,000 electric-vehicle charging stations, replace 50,000 diesel transit vehicles, electrify at least 20% of yellow school buses, replace 100% of the nation’s lead pipes, and build and update more than two million homes, schools, hospitals and office buildings…
https://www.barrons.com/articles/welbilt-a-small-cap-stock-for-the-restaurant-recovery-51616796000

Biden’s infrastructure plan met with skepticism from some lawmakers
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said earlier this week that he doesn’t want to see tax increases “across the board on America” to pay for an infrastructure bill…
    But some congressional Democrats have also criticized Mr. Biden’s infrastructure proposal… Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, one of the most prominent progressives in the House, said in a tweet on Tuesday that the bill was too limited…”This is not nearly enough. The important context here is that it’s $2.25T spread out over 10 years…some Democrats in New York and New Jersey have insisted that they will not support any changes to the tax code unless the state and local tax (SALT) reduction is restored…  https://www.cbsnews.com/news/biden-infrastructure-plan-congress-skeptical/

CNN mocked for fawning over Biden’s infrastructure plan with ‘analysis’ claiming it’s a window into his ‘soul’    https://www.foxnews.com/media/cnn-fawns-over-biden-window-soul

Because Biden’s infrastructure plan is smaller than prophesized, bonds rallied a tad; the DJTA sank; techs and Fangs rallied.  Biden’s ‘infrastructure’ scheme is lighter on infrastructure but heavy on green stuff. Wednesday’s market action was the opposite of the reflation trade, or the economic ebbing trade.  Large tax increases and the further implementation of a command economy are typically bad for the economy.  Biden’s latest trillions scheme resembles FDR’s New Deal or a Soviet Five-Year Plan.

After the early adjustment to Biden’s infrastructure scheme, traders and money managers got busy doing what they needed to do to embellish Q1 performance.  Hedgies and money managers fervidly pushed up the over-owned but recently underperforming Fangs and tech stocks. 

ESMs rallied gradually from the US repo market opening until they surged on the NYSE open.  ESMs and stocks soared until the afternoon arrived.  ESMs and stocks rolled over in the afternoon and then tumbled during the final hour of trading.  Traders trapped long and Q1 rebalancing thwarted the manipulators.  Much of the early manipulation to game Q1 performance went for naught. 

Bonds ended negative after rallying early on Biden’s lesser infrastructure scheme.

While lesser mortals were transfixed on the financial markets on Wednesday, commodities rallied sharply because grain prices went postal.  Corn went up the 25-cent limit; soybeans went limit up [70 cents]; wheat rallied 17 cents.  This is, of course, inflationary, despite what Powell and his ilk try to sell

The Fed continues to advocate and support Democrat initiatives.  Powell again invoked fear of climate change.  When will someone ask Powell: 1) What can the Fed do about climate change; and 2) if the Fed can wade into climate change politics on the sophistry that the Fed should be involved in anything that affects the US economy, what will the Fed do or advocate about urban crime because it negatively impacts cities, far more than climate change, and creates inequality of incomes and wealth for minorities?

Fed’s Kaplan Says Infrastructure Spending Will Boost U.S. Growth
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-03-31/fed-s-kaplan-says-infrastructure-spending-will-boost-u-s-growth

BBG’s @josh_wingrove: In his speech, Biden singles out Amazon Inc. for paying nothing in federal corporate taxes.  “I’m going to put an end to that,” he said.

@abigailmarone: $2.2 trillion infrastructure plan introduced and Biden takes no questions… typical

Bad News Bias – The U.S. media is offering a different picture of Covid-19 from science journals or the international media, a study finds.  [Now that DJT is gone, the NYT run this story!]
    Bruce Sacerdote, an economics professor at Dartmouth College, noticed something last year about the Covid-19 television coverage that he was watching on CNN and PBS. It almost always seemed negative, regardless of what was he seeing in the data or hearing from scientists he knew.
    When Covid cases were rising in the U.S., the news coverage emphasized the increase. When cases were falling, the coverage instead focused on those places where cases were rising. And when vaccine research began showing positive results, the coverage downplayed it, as far as Sacerdote could tell…
     The coverage by U.S. publications with a national audience has been much more negative than coverage by any other source that the researchers analyzed, including scientific journals, major international publications and regional U.S. media…
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/24/briefing/boulder-shooting-george-segal-astrazeneca.html

Jonathan Turley: Facebook has removed a video of an interview by Lara Trump of her father-in-law and former president. The company declared that it would censor any content “in the voice of Donald Trump.”… The move is an obvious attack on free speech, including political speech…Democrats have abandoned long-held free speech values in favor of corporate censorship… members like Sen. Mazie Hirono (D., HI) pressed witnesses like Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey for assurance that Trump would remain barred from speaking on their platforms…Senator Chris Coons pressed Dorsey to expand the categories of censored material to prevent people from sharing any views that he considers “climate denialism.”… [Incredibly, this is the USA today!]  https://jonathanturley.org/category/free-speech/

@AlexKokcharov: This was reportedly filmed on 29 March on Crimea bridge, linking occupied Crimea, and Krasnodar region in south Russia: 2S19 Msta-S self-propelled howitzers, various trucks, BMP-3 IFVs.   https://twitter.com/AlexKokcharov/status/1377356706842247168

The March Employment Report will be released on Friday.  650k NFP are expected; but the whisper number is 700k+.  The Unemployment Rate is expected to fall to 6.0% from 6.2%. 

To all our Jewish friends out there, I wish you a very Happy Passover week

 

I will see you MONDAY night.

2 comments

  1. […] by Harvey Organ, Harvey Organ Blog: […]

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  2. […] by Harvey Organ, Harvey Organ Blog: […]

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