MARCH 3//FED CHAIRMAN FINISHES HIS TALK EARLY THIS AFTERNOON AND NOW GOLD AND SILVER WILL RISE: GOLD PRICE UP $13.95 TO $1935//SILVER UP 2 CENTS TO $25.14//GOLD STANDING FOR MARCH RISES BY A STRONG QUEUE JUMP OF 4900 OZ: NEW STANDING A VERY STRONG 17.409 TONNES//SILVER OZ STANDING DECLINES BY A WHOPPING 1.3MILLION OZ AS NO SILVER IS AROUND//NEW STANDING 40.715 MILLION OZ//RUSSIA’S INVASION OF UKRAINE: MAJOR UPDATES//TOM LUONGO IS A MUST READ ON THIS SUBJECT//UPDATES ON THE BATTLE GROUND COURTESY OF ROBERT H.//FITCH AND MOODY’S CUT RUSSIAN DEBT TO JUNK//TEMPORARY CEASEFIRE ANNOUNCED//COVID MANDATE UPDATES/VACCINE IMPACT//USA SERVICE SECTOR DATA FALTERS//TURKEY’S INFLATION RATE HITS 54%PER ANNUM/SWAMP STORIES FOR YOU TONIGHT//

GOLD;  $1935.00 UP $13.95

SILVER: $25.14 UP $0.02

ACCESS MARKET: GOLD $1936.60

SILVER: $25.19

 Bitcoin morning price:  $43,563 DOWN  $207

Bitcoin: afternoon price: $42,199 DOWN 1571

Platinum price: closing UP $5.25 to $1081.25

Palladium price; closing UP $114.00  at $2787.45

END

end

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comex notices/

March: JPMorgan stopped/total issued 0



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

total notices so far:  3681 contracts for 368,100 oz (11.449 tonnes)

SILVER NOTICES: 

268 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR  1,340,000   OZ/

total number of notices filed so far this month  4456  :  for 22,280,000  oz

END

Russia is a major supplier of silver to London while Mexico supplies the COMEX

With the sanctions, London has no way to obtain silver other than compete with NY.

END

GLD

WITH GOLD UP $13.95

WITH RESPECT TO GLD WITHDRAWALS:  (OVER THE PAST FEW MONTHS):

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

ALSO INVESTORS SWITCHING TO SPROTT PHYSICAL  (phys) INSTEAD OF THE FRAUDULENT GLD//

A HUGE CHANGE IN GLD INVENTORY//A DEPOSIT OF 7.84 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD//

INVENTORY RESTS AT 1050.22 TONNES

Silver//SLV

WITH NO SILVER AROUND AND SILVER UP $0.02

AT THE SLV//

INVESTORS ARE SWITCHING SLV TO SPROTT’S PSLV

NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV/

FROM THE SLV. 

CLOSING INVENTORY: 545.854 MILLION OZ

Let us have a look at the data for today

SILVER//OUTLINE


SILVER COMEX OI ROSE BY A STRONG  1402 CONTRACTS TO 159,321  AND CLOSER TO THE NEW RECORD OF 244,710, SET FEB 25/2020 AND WITH  THIS STRONG GAIN IN OI, IT WAS ACCOMPANIED WITH OUR  $0.32 LOSS  IN SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX ON WEDNESDAY.  OUR BANKERS WERE SUCCESSFUL IN KNOCKING THE PRICE OF SILVER DOWN (IT FELL BY $0.32) BUT WERE  UNSUCCESSFUL IN KNOCKING OUT ANY SILVER LONGS  AS WE HAD A HUGE  GAIN OF 4030 CONTRACTS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES 

WE  MUST HAVE HAD: 
I) HUGE BANKER SHORT COVERING AS THEY ARE VERY ANXIOUS TO GET OUT OF DODGE!!/. II)WE ALSO HAD  SOME  REDDIT RAPTOR BUYING//.   iii)  A STRONG ISSUANCE OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS iiii) A HUGE INITIAL SILVER STANDING FOR COMEX SILVER MEASURING AT 42.860 MILLION OZ FOLLOWED BY TODAY’S EFP OF 1,360,000 OZ //NEW STANDING 40.715 //         V)    huge SIZED COMEX OI GAIN/

 I AM NOW RECORDING THE DIFFERENTIAL IN OI FROM PRELIMINARY TO FINAL: 


THE DIFFERENTIAL FROM PRELIMINARY OI TO FINAL OI SILVER TODAY: CONTRACTS  +528  ???

HISTORICAL ACCUMULATION OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS  MAR. ACCUMULATION FOR EFP’S SILVER/JPMORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES/STARTING FROM FIRST DAY/MONTH OF MAR: 

TOTAL CONTACTS for 3 days, total  contracts: :  5824 contracts or 29.120 million oz  OR 9.706 MILLION OZ PER DAY. (1941 CONTRACTS PER DAY)

TOTAL NO OF OZ UNDERGOING EFP TO LONDON 5824 CONTRACTS X 5,000 PER CONTRACT:

EQUATES TO: 29.120 MILLION OZ

.

LAST 10 MONTHS TOTAL EFP CONTRACTS ISSUED  IN MILLIONS OF OZ:

MAY 137.83 MILLION

JUNE 149.91 MILLION OZ

JULY 129.445 MILLION OZ

AUGUST: MILLION OZ 140.120 

SEPT. 28.230 MILLION OZ//

OCT:  94.595 MILLION OZ

NOV: 131.925 MILLION OZ

DEC: 100.615 MILLION OZ 

JAN 2022//  90.460 MILLION OZ

FEB 2022:  72.39 MILLION OZ//

MARCH: 29.120 MILLION OZ//

RESULT: WE HAD A HUGE  SIZED INCREASE IN COMEX OI SILVER COMEX CONTRACTS OF 1930 DESPITE OUR STRONG  $0.32  LOSS SILVER PRICING AT THE COMEX// WEDNESDAY  THE CME NOTIFIED US THAT WE HAD A  STRONG  SIZED EFP ISSUANCE OF  2100 CONTRACTS( 2100 CONTRACTS ISSUED FOR MAR AND 0 CONTRACTS ISSUED FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS) WHICH  EXITED OUT OF THE SILVER COMEX  TO LONDON  AS FORWARDS    THE DOMINANT FEATURE TODAY: /HUGE BANKER SHORT COVERING AS THEY GET OUT OF DODGE//// WE HAVE A HUGE INITIAL SILVER OZ STANDING FOR MAR. OF 42.860 MILLION OZ  FOLLOWED BY TODAY’S 1,360,000 OZ EFP TO LONDON  ///  .. WE HAD A VERY STRONG SIZED GAIN OF 3502 OI CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES FOR 17.510MILLION OZ 

 WE HAD 268 NOTICES FILED TODAY FOR  1,340,000 OZ

GOLD//OUTLINE

IN GOLD, THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST FELL BY A FAIR SIZED 2,773 CONTRACTS  TO 612,827 AND FURTHER FORM  OUR NEW RECORD (SET JAN 24/2020) AT 799,541 AND  PREVIOUS TO THAT: (SET JAN 6/2020) AT 797,110.

THE DIFFERENTIAL FROM PRELIMINARY OI TO FINAL OI IN GOLD TODAY: +195  CONTRACTS.

THE BIS HAS ABANDONED THE GOLD COMEX TRADING!!!

.

THE  FAIR SIZED DECREASE IN COMEX OI CAME WITH OUR STRONG LOSS IN PRICE OF $20.80//COMEX GOLD TRADING/WEDNESDAY/.AS IN SILVER WE MUST  HAD  HUGE BANKER/ALGO SHORT COVERING ACCOMPANYING OUR STRONG SIZED EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL ISSUANCE. WE HAD ZERO LONG LIQUIDATION   AS THE TOTAL GAIN ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES TOTALED A TINY 31 CONTRACTS…

WE ALSO HAD A HUGE INITIAL STANDING IN GOLD TONNAGE FOR MARCH AT 14.818 TONNES FOLLOWED BY TODAY’S QUEUE JUMP OF 4900 OZ//NEW STANDING 17.409 TONNES 

YET ALL OF..THIS HAPPENED WITH OUR LOSS IN PRICE OF   $20.80 WITH RESPECT TO WEDNESDAY’S TRADING

WE HAD A TINY SIZED GAIN OF 226  OI CONTRACTS (0.7029 PAPER TONNES) ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES

E.F.P. ISSUANCE

THE CME RELEASED THE DATA FOR EFP ISSUANCE AND IT TOTALED A FAIR SIZED  42999 CONTRACTS:

The NEW COMEX OI FOR THE GOLD COMPLEX RESTS AT 612,827.

IN ESSENCE WE HAVE A TINY SIZED INCREASE IN TOTAL CONTRACTS ON THE TWO EXCHANGES OF 226, WITH 2773 CONTRACTS DECREASED AT THE COMEX AND 2999 EFP OI CONTRACTS WHICH NAVIGATED OVER TO LONDON. THUS  TOTAL OI GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES OF 226 CONTRACTS OR 0.7029TONNES.

CALCULATIONS ON GAIN/LOSS ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES

WE HAD A FAIR SIZED ISSUANCE IN EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS (2999) ACCOMPANYING THE FAIR SIZED LOSS IN COMEX OI (2773,): TOTAL GAIN IN THE TWO EXCHANGES 226 CONTRACTS. WE NO DOUBT HAD 1) HUGE BANKER SHORT COVERING ,2.) HUGE INITIAL STANDING AT THE GOLD COMEX FOR MARCH. AT 14.818 TONNES FOLLOWED BY TODAY’S QUEUE JUMP OF 4900 OZ//NEW STANDING 17.409 TONNES ///  3) ZERO LONG LIQUIDATION/. ,4)  FAIR SIZED COMEX OI. LOSS 5) FAIR ISSUANCE OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL/

HISTORICAL ACCUMULATION OF EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICALS IN 2022 INCLUDING TODAY

MARCH

ACCUMULATION OF EFP’S GOLD AT J.P. MORGAN’S HOUSE OF BRIBES: (EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL) FOR THE MONTH OF MAR :

14,223 CONTRACTS OR 1,422,300 OR 44.23  TONNES 3 TRADING DAY(S) AND THUS AVERAGING: 4743 EFP CONTRACTS PER TRADING DAY

TO GIVE YOU AN IDEA AS TO THE  SIZE OF THESE EFP TRANSFERS :  THIS MONTH IN 3 TRADING DAY(S) IN  TONNES: 44.23 TONNES

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

THUS EFP TRANSFERS REPRESENTS  44.23/3550 x 100% TONNES  1.23% OF GLOBAL ANNUAL PRODUCTION

ACCUMULATION OF GOLD EFP’S YEAR 2021 TO 2022 

JANUARY/2021: 265.26 TONNES (RAPIDLY INCREASING AGAIN)

 FEB  :  171.24 TONNES  ( DEFINITELY SLOWING DOWN AGAIN).. 

MARCH:.   276.50 TONNES (STRONG AGAIN/

APRIL:      189..44 TONNES  ( DRAMATICALLY SLOWING DOWN AGAIN//GOLD IN BACKWARDATION)

MAY:        250.15 TONNES  (NOW DRAMATICALLY INCREASING AGAIN)

JUNE:      247.54 TONNES (FINAL)

JULY:        188.73 TONNES FINAL

AUGUST:   217.89 TONNES FINAL ISSUANCE.

SEPT          142.12 TONNES FINAL ISSUANCE ( LOW ISSUANCE)_

OCT:           141.13 TONNES FINAL ISSUANCE (LOW ISSUANCE)

NOV:           312.46 TONNES FINAL ISSUANCE//NEW RECORD!! (INCREASING DRAMATICALLY)//SIGN OF REAL STRESS//SURPASSING THE MARCH 2021 RECORD OF 276.50 TONNES OF EFP

DEC.           145.12 TONNES//FINAL ISSUANCE// 

JAN:2022   247.25 TONNES //FINAL

FEB:           196.04 TONNES//FINAL

MARCH:  44.23 TONNES INITIAL

SPREADING OPERATIONS

(/NOW SWITCHING TO GOLD) FOR NEWCOMERS, HERE ARE THE DETAILS

SPREADING LIQUIDATION HAS NOW COMMENCED   AS WE HEAD TOWARDS THE  NEW ACTIVE FRONT MONTH OF APRIL.WE ARE NOW INTO THE SPREADING OPERATION OF GOLD

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:HERE IS HOW THE CROOKS USED SPREADING AS WE ARE NOW INTO THE  NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF MARCH HEADING TOWARDS THE  ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF APRIL, FOR GOLD:

YOU WILL ALSO NOTICE THAT THE COMEX OPEN INTEREST  STARTS TO RISE BUT SO IS THE OPEN INTEREST OF SPREADERS. THE OPEN INTEREST IN WILL CONTINUE TO RISE UNTIL ONE WEEK BEFORE FIRST DAY NOTICE OF AN UPCOMING  ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH (MAR), 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.”

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  1930 CONTRACTS TO 159,321  AND CLOSER TO 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  4 1/2 YEARS AGO.  

EFP ISSUANCE 2100 CONTRACTS

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

MAR 2100  ALL OTHER MONTHS: ZERO. TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE:  2100 CONTRACTS. EFP’S GIVE OUR COMEX LONGS A FIAT BONUS PLUS A DELIVERABLE PRODUCT OVER IN LONDON.  IF WE TAKE THE  COMEX OI GAIN OF 1402 CONTRACTS AND ADD TO THE 2100 OI TRANSFERRED TO LONDON THROUGH EFP’S,

WE OBTAIN A HUGE SIZED GAIN OF 4020 OPEN INTEREST CONTRACT FROM OUR TWO EXCHANGES. 

THUS IN OUNCES, THE GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES 20.150 MILLION  OZ, 

OCCURRED WITH OUR  $0.32 LOSS IN PRICE.

OUTLINE FOR TODAY’S COMMENTARY

1/COMEX GOLD AND SILVER REPORT

(report Harvey)

2 ) Gold/silver trading overnight Europe,

(Peter Schiff,

3. Egon von Greyerz///Matthew Piepenburg via GoldSwitzerland.com,

4. Chris Powell of GATA provides to us very important physical commentaries

5. Other gold commentaries

6. Commodity commentaries/cryptocurrencies

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)THURSDAY MORNING// WEDNESDAY  NIGHT

SHANGHAI CLOSED DOWN 3.03 PTS OR 0.09%       //Hang Sang CLOSED UP 123.42 PTS OR 0.55%  /The Nikkei closed UP 184.24 PTS or 0.70%       //Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP 0.55%  /Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN 6.3192    /Oil UP TO 113.40 dollars per barrel for WTI and UP TO 116.25 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED  ALL RED EXCEPT FRANCE       //  ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN AGAINST THE DOLLAR AT 6.3192. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.3241: /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN  TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFF SHORE WEAKER//

A)NORTH KOREA/

b) REPORT ON JAPAN

OUTLINE

3 C CHINA

OUTLINE

4/EUROPEAN AFFAIRS

OUTLINE

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

OUTLINE

6.Global Issues

OUTLINE

7. OIL ISSUES

OUTLINE

8 EMERGING MARKET ISSUES

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

GOLD

LET US BEGIN:

THE TOTAL COMEX GOLD OPEN INTEREST FELL BY A FAIR SIZED 2,773 CONTRACTS  AND 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  COMEX INCREASE OCCURRED WITH OUR HUGE LOSS OF $20.80 IN GOLD PRICING WEDNESDAY’S COMEX TRADING. WE ALSO HAD A FAIR SIZED EFP (2999 CONTRACTS). . THEY WERE PAID HANDSOMELY  NOT TO TAKE DELIVERY AT THE COMEX AND SETTLE FOR CASH. 

WE NORMALLY HAVE 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. IT SEEMS THAT ARE BANKERS FRIENDS ARE EXERCISING EFP’S FROM LONDON AND NOW THEY ARE LOATHE TO ISSUE NEW ONES.

EXCHANGE FOR PHYSICAL ISSUANCE

WE ARE NOW MOVING TO THE   NON ACTIVE DELIVERY MONTH OF MAR..  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 2999 EFP CONTRACTS WERE ISSUED:  ;: ,   & FEB. 0 APRIL:2999 & ZERO FOR ALL OTHER MONTHS:

TOTAL EFP ISSUANCE:  2999 CONTRACTS 

WHEN WE HAVE BACKWARDATION,  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. THE LOWER PRICES IN THE FUTURES MARKET IS A MAGNET FOR OUR LONDONERS SEEKING PHYSICAL METAL. BACKWARDATION ALWAYS EQUAL SCARCITY OF METAL!

ON A NET BASIS IN OPEN INTEREST WE GAINED THE FOLLOWING TODAY ON OUR TWO EXCHANGES: A  TINY SIZED  TOTAL OF 31 CONTRACTS IN THAT 2999 LONGS WERE TRANSFERRED AS FORWARDS TO LONDON AND WE HAD A FAIR SIZED  COMEX OI LOSS OF 2968  CONTRACTS..

// WE HAVE A STRONG AMOUNT OF GOLD TONNAGE STANDING FOR MAR   (17.409),

 HERE ARE THE AMOUNTS THAT STOOD FOR DELIVERY IN THE PRECEDING 12 MONTHS OF 2021:

DEC 2021: 112.217 TONNES

NOV.  8.074 TONNES

OCT.    57.707 TONNES

SEPT: 11.9160 TONNES

AUGUST: 80.489 TONNES

JULY: 7.2814 TONNES

JUNE:  72.289 TONNES

MAY 5.77 TONNES

APRIL  95.331 TONNES

MARCH 30.205 TONNES

FEB ’21. 113.424 TONNES

JAN ’21: 6.500 TONNES.

TOTAL SO FAR THIS YEAR (JAN- DEC): 601.213 TONNES

FEB 2022: 59.023 TONNES

MARCH: 17.409 TONNES

THE BANKERS WERE SUCCESSFUL IN LOWERING GOLD’S PRICE  //// (IT FELL $20.80) BUT  THEY WERE  UNSUCCESSFUL IN FLEECING ANY LONGS AS WE HAVE  REGISTERED A TINY SIZED GAIN  OF 0.7029 TONNES OF TOTAL OI, ACCOMPANYING OUR HUGE GOLD TONNAGE STANDING FOR MAR (17.409 TONNES)…

WE HAD  + 195 CONTRACTS REMOVED FROM COMEX TRADES. THESE WERE REMOVED AFTER TRADING ENDED LAST NIGHT

NET GAIN ON THE TWO EXCHANGES 226 CONTRACTS OR 2600 OZ OR 0.7029 TONNES

Estimated gold volume today: 225,091 ///FAIR

Confirmed volume yesterday: 236,486 contracts  fair  to good

INITIAL STANDINGS FOR MAR ’22 COMEX GOLD //

GoldOunces
Withdrawals from Dealers Inventory in oznil oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory in oz3973.377 oz
BRINKS
Deposit to the Dealer Inventory in oznil OZ 
Deposits to the Customer Inventory, in oznil
No of oz served (contracts) today0  notice(s)0 OZ
0 TONNES
No of oz to be served (notices)1916 contracts 191,600 oz
5.9595 TONNES
Total monthly oz gold served (contracts) so far this month3681 notices
3,68,100 OZ
11.449 TONNES
Total accumulative withdrawals of gold from the Dealers inventory this monthNIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of gold from the Customer inventory this monthxxx oz

 /

For today:

0 dealer deposit 

total dealer deposit nil oz

No dealer withdrawal 0

0 customer deposit

total deposit: NIL oz

1 customer withdrawal

i) Brinks: 3973.377 oz

total withdrawals:  3973.377     oz  

ADJUSTMENTS:  1//dealer to customer//JPMorgan

15,502.595 oz (dealer to customer/JPM)

CALCULATIONS FOR THE AMOUNT OF GOLD STANDING FOR MARCH.

For the front month of MARCH we have an oi of 1916 contracts having gained 19

We had 30 notices filed yesterday so strangely on day 4 we gained a STRONG 49 contracts or 4,900 oz will  stand for delivery and these guys refused again to be EFP’d over to London. They must

be after a huge amount of gold on this side of the pond.

April saw a LOSS of 7093 contracts up to 454,553.

May saw a gain of 507 contracts to stand at 545

June saw a GAIN of 2679 contracts up to 97,256 contracts

We had 0 notice(s) filed today for 0  oz FOR THE MAR 2022 CONTRACT MONTH. 


Today, 0 notice(s) were issued from J.P.Morgan dealer account and 0 notices were issued from their client or customer account. The total of all issuance by all participants equates to 0 contract(s) of which 0  notices were stopped (received) by j.P. Morgan dealer and 0 notice(s) was (were) stopped/ Received) by J.P.Morgan//customer account and 0  notice(s) received (stopped) by the squid  (Goldman Sachs)

To calculate the INITIAL total number of gold ounces standing for the FEB /2021. contract month, 

we take the total number of notices filed so far for the month (3681) x 100 oz , to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of  (MAR: 1916 CONTRACTS ) minus the number of notices served upon today  0 x 100 oz per contract equals 559,700 OZ  OR 17.409 TONNES the number of TONNES standing in this  active month of mar. 

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

No of notices filed so far (3681) x 100 oz+   (1916)  OI for the front month minus the number of notices served upon today (0} x 100 oz} which equals 559,700 oz standing OR 17.409 TONNES in this  NON active delivery month of MAR.

TOTAL COMEX GOLD STANDING:  17.409 TONNES  (A WHOPPER FOR A MAR (NON ACTIVE) DELIVERY MONTH)

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

COMEX GOLD INVENTORIES/CLASSIFICATION

NEW PLEDGED GOLD:

178,539.763, oz NOW PLEDGED /HSBC  5.55 TONNES

123,963.792 PLEDGED  MANFRA 3.86 TONNES

54,339.114oz PLEDGED JPMorgan no 1  1.690 tonnes

262,049.904, oz  JPM No 2  8.15 TONNES

898,821.330 oz pledged  Brinks/27,96 TONNES

12,249,333 oz International Delaware:  0..3810 tonnes

Loomis: 18,615.429 oz

total pledged gold:  1,548,578.620 oz                                     48.16 tonnes

TOTAL REGISTERED AND ELIG GOLD AT THE COMEX: 32,593,024.501  OZ (1013.77 TONNES)

TOTAL ELIGIBLE GOLD: 15,207,229.430 OZ (473.00 tonnes)

TOTAL OF ALL REGISTERED GOLD: 17,385,795.131 OZ  (540.77 tonnes)

REGISTERED GOLD THAT CAN BE SERVED UPON: 15,837,217.0 OZ (REG GOLD- PLEDGED GOLD)  492.60 tonnes

END

MAR 2022 CONTRACT MONTH//SILVER

SilverOunces
Withdrawals from Dealers InventoryNIL oz
Withdrawals from Customer Inventory565,268.800  oz HSBC
CNT
JPM
Deposits to the Dealer Inventorynil
OZ
Deposits to the Customer Inventory323,795.840 oz
Brinks
No of oz served today (contracts)268CONTRACT(S)1,340,000  OZ)
No of oz to be served (notices)3687 contracts (18,435,000 oz)
Total monthly oz silver served (contracts)4456 contracts 22,280,000 oz)
Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Dealers inventory this monthNIL oz
Total accumulative withdrawal of silver from the Customer inventory this month

And now for the wild silver comex results

we had 0 deposits into the dealer

total dealer deposits:  nil       oz

i) We had 0 dealer withdrawal

total dealer withdrawals: nil oz

We have 1 deposits into the customer account

I) Into Brinks:  323,795.840 oz

JPMorgan has a total silver weight: 182.455 million oz/345.121 million =52.85% of comex 

ii) Comex withdrawals: 3

a)Out of CNT 201,250.630 oz

b) Out of jpm:  349,065.670 oz

c) Out of HSBC: 14,952.500

total withdrawal 565,268.800 oz

we had 2 adjustments//

customer to dealer:

1. JPMorgan: 1,491,058.600oz

ii) HSBC:  5054.03 oz

the silver comex is in stress!

TOTAL REGISTERED SILVER: 83.905 MILLION OZ

TOTAL REG + ELIG. 345.121

 MILLION OZ

CALCULATION OF SILVER OZ STANDING FOR MARCH

silver open interest data:

FRONT MONTH OF MARCH OI:  3935, HAVING LOST 365 CONTRACTS FROM YESTERDAY.

WE HAD 93 NOTICES SERVED UPON YESTERDAY, SO WE LOST 272 CONTRACTS OR AN ADDITIONAL 1,360,000 OZ WILL NOT   STAND

 FOR DELIVERY OVER HERE AND THEY WERE EFP’D TO LONDON. THERE IS NO SILVER OVER HERE!!

APRIL HAD A  88 CONTRACT GAIN// CONTRACTS RISING TO 570

MAY HAD A  GAIN OF 1514 CONTRACTS UP TO 129,574 contracts

 .

TOTAL NUMBER OF NOTICES FILED FOR TODAY: 268 for 1,340,000 oz

Comex volumes: 67,549// est. volume today//fair/

Comex volume: confirmed yesterday: 74,135 contracts (fair to good)

To calculate the number of silver ounces that will stand for delivery in MAR. we take the total number of notices filed for the month so far at  4456 x 5,000 oz =. 22,280,000 oz 

to which we add the difference between the open interest for the front month of MAR (1916) and the number of notices served upon today 268 x (5000 oz) equals the number of ounces standing.

Thus the  standings for silver for the MAR./2021 contract month: 4456 (notices served so far) x 5000 oz + OI for front month of MAR (1916)  – number of notices served upon today (268) x 5000 oz of silver standing for the MAR contract month equates 40,715,000 oz. .

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

END

GLD AND SLV INVENTORY LEVELS:

MARCH 3/WITH GOLD UP $13.95: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 7.84 TONNES//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1050.22 TONNES

MARCH 2/WITH GOLD DOWN $20.80//A MONSTER CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 13.36 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1042.38 TONNES

MARCH 1/WITH GOLD UP $42.60: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: //INVENTORY RESTS AT 1029.32 TONNES

FEB 28/WITH GOLD UP $12.95: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1029.32 TONNES

FEB 25/WITH GOLD DOWN $38.95: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1029.32 TONNES

FEB 24/WITH GOLD UP $17.35//A HUGE  CHANGE AT THE GLD: 5.23 TONNES INTO THE GLD// IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD/INVENTORY REST AT 1029.32 TONNES

FEB 23/WITH GOLD UP $2.00 : NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1024.09 TONNES

FEB 22/WITH GOLD UP $6.20: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 4.65 TONNES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1024.09 TONNES

FEB 18/WITH GOLD DOWN $1.80: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1019.44 TONNES

FEB 17/WITH GOLD UP $29.50: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1019.44 TONNES

FEB 16/WITH GOLD UP 414.60 NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1019.44 TONNES

FEB 15/WITH GOLD DOWN $12.70 NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1019.44 TONNES

FEB 14/WITH GOLD UP $27.20 NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1019.44 TONNES

FEB 11/WITH GOLD UP $4.50 A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD IVNETORY AT THE GLD// A DEPOSIT OF 3.48 TONNES INTO THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1019.44 TONES

FEB 10/WITH GOLD UP $1.00: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD///INVENTORY RESTS AT 1015.96 TONNES

FEB 9/WITH GOLD UP $8.05//NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1015.96 TONNES

FEB 8/WITH GOLD UP $5.95 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 4.36 TONNES INTO THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1015.96 TONNES

FEB 7/WITH GOLD UP $14.00 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 3.24 TONNES FROM THE GLD/////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1011.60 TONNES//

FEB 4/WITH GOLD UP $3.40 TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.75 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1014.84 TONNES

FEB 3/WITH GOLD DOWN $5.55: HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A WITHDRAWAL OF 1.45 TONNES FROM THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1016.59 TONNES

FEB 2/WITH GOLD UP $7.95//A HUGE CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD: A DEPOSIT OF 3.78 TONES OF GOLD INTO THE GLD////INVENTORY RESTS AT 1018.04 TONNES

FEB 1/WITH GOLD UP $5.40: NO CHANGES IN GOLD INVENTORY AT THE GLD//INVENTORY RESTS AT 1014.26 TONNES

CLOSING INVENTORY FOR THE GLD//1050.22 TONNES

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

MARCH 3/WITH SILVER UP 2 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 545.854 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 2/WITH SILVER DOWN $.32 TODAY: A SMALL CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 198,000 OZ FROM THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 545.854 MILLION OZ//

MARCH 1/WITH SILVER UP $1.13 TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 546.052 MILLION OZ//

FEB 28/WITH SILVER UP 31 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY REST AT 546.052 MILLION OZ//

FEB 25/WITH SILVER DOWN 64 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A WITHDRAWAL OF 5.510 MILLION OZ FROM THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 546.052 MILLION OZ/

FEB 24/WITH SILVER UP 15 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 551.597 MILLION OZ

FEB 23/WITH SILVER UP 22 CENTS TODAY; NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 551.597 MILLION OZ//

FEB 22/WITH SILVER UP 30 CENTS TODAY: A SMALL CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 350,000 OZ INTO THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 551.597 MILLION OZ//

FEB 18/WITH SILVER UP 7 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 1.017 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 551.227 MILLION OZ

FEB 17/WITH SILVER UP 31 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 2.402 MILLION OZ//INVENTORY RESTS AT 550.210 MILLION OZ/

FEB 16/WITH SILVER UP 21 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 547.808 MILLIONOZ

FEB 15/WITH SILVER DOWN 46 CENTS TODAY : NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 547.808 MILLION OZ//

FEB 14/WITH SILVER UP 49 CENTS TODAY; A HUGE CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 3.235 MILLION OZ INTO THES LV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 547.808 MILLION OZ

FEB 11/WITH SILVER DOWN 18 CENTS TODAY:NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 544.573 MILLION OZ///

SLV/FEB 10/WITH SILVER UP 19 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 544.573 MILLION OZ//

FEB 9/WITH SILVER UP 14 CENTS TODAY; NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 544.573 MILLION OZ//

FEB 8/WITH SILVER UP 15 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 3.143 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV////INVENTORY RESTS AT 544.573 MILLION OZ//

FEB 7/WITH SILVER UP 52 CENTS TODAY: A BIG CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 2.218 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV///INVENTORY RESTS AT 541.430 MILLION OZ/

FEB 4/WITH SILVER UP 16 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 539.212 MILION OZ

FEB 3/WITH SILVER DOWN 35 CENTS: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT539.212 MILLION OZ//

FEB 2/WITH SILVER UP 15 CENTS TODAY: A HUGE CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV: A DEPOSIT OF 5.411 MILLION OZ INTO THE SLV.//INVENTORY RESTS AT 539.212 MILLION OZ/

FEB 1/WITH SILVER UP 18 CENTS TODAY: NO CHANGES IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV//INVENTORY RESTS AT 533.801 MILLION OZ

SLV FINAL INVENTORY FOR TODAY: 545.854 MILLION OZ//

PHYSICAL GOLD/SILVER STORIES

1.PETER SCHIFF

Inflation Continues To Chew Up Your Paycheck

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 02:00 PM

Via SchiffGold.com,

Inflation continues to chew up your paycheck.

While consumer prices rose 0.7% in January, income from all sources, including wages, salaries, interest dividends, rental income, unemployment, Social Security, etc. was essentially flat.

And when adjusted for inflation, real personal income fell by 0.5%.

In other words, you didn’t put any more money in your pocket in January. But you’re paying more — for everything.

Looking at the bigger picture, real incomes have fallen 7.5% from stimulus-inflated 2021. Going back to January 2020, real incomes are up a paltry 3.7%.

Keep in mind, this is aggregate data. There are more people in America than there were last year. Adjusted for population growth, the numbers become bleaker. Real personal income fell 10.1% from a year ago and was only up 1.8% from January 2020.

As you can see from the graph, Americans are losing ground fast.

While real income shrinks, Americans are spending more as inflation runs up the price of everything.

Consumer spending rose by 0.8% in January from December (seasonally adjusted), and by 11.6% year-over-year.

When you factor in 7.5% annual CPI, it becomes clear that Americans are spending a lot more, but they getting a whole lot less for it. Most of the increase in spending simply represents rising prices.

And the reality is even worse. These numbers are based on a government-rigged Consumer Price Index. Using an honest CPI of 15%, all of the spending increase is eaten up by inflation — and then some.

Simply put, you’re spending more and getting less. And try as you might, you can’t outrun the inflation dragon.

This obliterates a myth you’ll often hear in mainstream media – the notion that inflation isn’t really that bad for the average American. After all, wages rise too. But as this data shows, wages rarely rise at the same pace as prices. That means inflation puts a significant squeeze on the pocketbook, at least in the short term.

Of course, you don’t need us to tell you that. You’re living it.

Economists and pundits talk about inflation as an academic exercise. They rarely reflect on the fact that rising prices have real impacts on real people. And if you happen to be somebody living on a fixed income or savings, you’re really screwed as inflation is rapidly eating away your purchasing power and your income streams aren’t increasing at all. Inflation always causes the most pain for the poor and elderly.

The focus on rising prices obscures the real villain in all this.

Greedy corporations and mysterious supply chain problems aren’t causing inflation. It’s the Fed. As economist Milton Friedman once said, inflation is always and everywhere a monetary phenomenon. Properly defined, inflation is an increase in the money supply. Rising prices are a symptom.

And the Fed has increased the money supply in spades. Over the last two years, the central bank has printed trillions of dollars out of thin air and injected them into the economy.

The Fed is supposed to make the economy more stable. But it’s clear the real impact is the exact opposite. The Fed causes great harm. And as Ron Paul pointed out in a recent article, it hurts the average American worker the most.

The truth is workers are inflation’s main victims.”

All you have to do is look at the data to see the truth in his words.

end

2.LAWRIE WILLIAM//,//Egon von Greyerz///Matthew Piepenburg via GoldSwitzerland.com, James  RICKARDS

-END-

A terrific read!!

LAWRIE WILLIAMS: 

02 Mar 2022 |-END-

3.  Chris Powell of GATA provides to us very important physical commentaries

end

4.OTHER GOLD/SILVER COMMENTARIES

This is huge news and it is discussed in detail by Tom Luongo

The Ministry of Finance supported the abolition of VAT on gold bullion for individuals

(courtesy Prime Feed)

Brown

March 2, 2022

Gold must become an alternative to foreign currency investment, and to increase demand for the precious metal in Russia, it would make sense to cancel VAT on its purchase from banks. This was stated by Finance Minister Anton Siluanov.

He clarified that the department has already prepared a positive revision of the draft law of the deputies of the State Duma, which implies the abolition of VAT for natural persons in this type of operations.

“Against the background of an unstable geopolitical situation, investing in gold will be an ideal alternative to buying dollars. The US currency is more volatile, subject to various types of risks. Because of this, it cannot compete with precious metals. Siluanov said. in a message on the website of the Ministry of Finance.

The abolition of value added tax when buying gold from banks for investment purposes has been discussed in recent years. The 20% rate is valid at the time of purchase, while the reverse operation – the sale of an ingot to a bank – does not imply a refund of VAT, depreciation of the investment itself. Two years earlier, the Ministry of Finance assumed that they could cancel VAT on bullion after the precious metals marking system (GIIS DMDC) was fully operational.

END

5.OTHER COMMODITIES/COAL (THERMAL)

Aussie coal prices surge almost $100.00 as countries seek alternatives to Russian coal

(Zhu/EpochTimes)

Aussie Coal Prices Surge Almost $100 As Countries Seek Alternatives To Russian Energy

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 12:00 PM

Authored by Rebecca Zhu via The Epoch Times,

The price of Australian thermal coal has skyrocketed by US$99, or 33 percent, in one day as countries traditionally reliant on Russian coal scramble to secure alternative sources.

Newcastle coal, the benchmark for thermal coal in the Asia-Pacific region, ended at US$400 (A$549) per tonne on March 2 after peaking at US$446 per tonne during the day.

Resources Minister Keith Pitt confirmed the government was “facilitating access” between interested parties and Australian thermal coal producers.

“Australia’s coal producers have indicated they are willing to help our friends and allies if they can,” Pitt told The Australian.

Poland currently in talks with Australia for coal supply, as the country is pushing for the European Union to stop importing coal from Russia.

“I talked about it today with the prime minister of Australia … to transport coal to Poland from there,” Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Wednesday.

Morawiecki said Poland just needed assurance from the European Commission that it would not get penalised for introducing an embargo on Russian coal.

“A blockade on various types of hydrocarbons from Russia —oil, gas, and coal—should be part of the sanctions package,” he said.

“I am calling once again for the European Commission to decide on an embargo on Russian coal.”

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki addresses a press conference in Budapest on April 1, 2021. (Attila Kisbenedek/AFP via Getty Images)

Around 65 percent of Poland’s energy grid in 2021 relied on coal. In the first half of 2021, the country important 6.2 million tonnes of coal of which 4 million of tonnes was from Russia and another 1.2 million tonnes from Australia.

The rest of the European Union similarly relies on Russia for coal, the third biggest exporter of the resource, accounting for over 40 percent of the region’s total coal imports in 2021.

While Australian and Polish authorities are currently in trade talks, other European nations may soon follow.

Current flooding across the east coast of Australia is also causing challenges for ports, with the Port of Brisbane closed.

Coal futures jumped US$161 during the first seven days of the Russian invasion into Ukraine, from $239 on Feb. 24 to $400 on March 2.

It previously surged in late 2021 after the Chinese Communist Party placed a ban on Australian coal as part of its trade war with Australia, which led to rolling blackouts across the nation.

Europe was also facing large energy shortfalls as countries moved towards renewables without a reliable energy grid.

At the time, it reached a peak of US$269 before plummeting back down.

 end

6.CRYPTOCURRENCIES

Here’s How Much Bitcoin Russia Has Bought In The Past Week

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 08:00 PM

In the words of the Washington Post, the battle between Russia and Ukraine is “the world’s first crypto war” as both sides discover the advantages of a borderless, permissionless currency.

Whether it is for enabling donations to Ukrainians (for arms or humanitarian needs) or for Russians evading Putin’s FX transfer bans or escaping western sanctions, both sides appear to see the benefits.

Crypto interest in Russia on the rise; and Google searches do show an uptick in interest in Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, from Russia and, to a lesser extent, from Ukraine.

At this stage 11% of Russians already own crypto; so there is some familiarly with it.

The recent decoupling of bitcoin from tech stocks shows the regime change in demand from some external factor…

And this could get significantly higher as the potential for capital flight from Russia is large.

In a recent note. Citi details that, net capital outflows from Russia during the 2014 crisis were 151bn (a surge of 90bn from the previous year). In the 2008 crisis, it was 133bn. Of course, that is not the same as capital flight, as it includes debt payments etc. The worst errors and omissions (capital flight proxy) in more recent memory was an outflow of around 5bn USD.

Though this time around the capital flight could be significantly more than that as the crisis is more severe.

Of course, it is an open question just how much crypto would be used for this purpose.

Just for reference, daily bitcoin volume in spot is around 4.8bn according to bitcointradevolume.com, and including derivatives it is around 20-40bn, i.e. it will take meaningful capital flight to move the needle.

But it is not just Russia, as Kaiko reports that bitcoin traded at a 6% premium on Binance’s Ukrainian hryvnia (UAH) market as demand for cryptocurrencies soared immediately following Russia’s invasion.

Demand surged on Binance as local Ukrainian currency markets faced significant disruptions, with the Ukrainian central bank temporarily halting foreign currency withdrawals and the Ukrainian hryvnia falling to all time lows versus the U.S. Dollar.

Both ruble and hryvnia trade volumes surged to their highest levels in months almost immediately after the Russian invasion, highlighting the complexities of the cryptocurrency industry’s role in the conflict.

While the potential for capital flight is high, as Citi details above, Russian volumes (although impressive-looking on the chart) have been relatively small in absolute terms so far (around 210 bitcoin per day on average), suggesting that the price action is more due to investors positioning for an expected uptick in demand from Russia, rather than Russian demand itself.

This will be important to monitor, as Bitcoin could recouple with technology stocks if the expected Russian buying should not materialize.

Of course, the very fact that volumes of crypto activity have surged from both Russia and Ukraine since the invasion has prompted the establishment to cry ‘no fair!’ with ECB President Christine Lagarde urging regulation to prevent Russia escaping their sanction threats:

“It’s so critically important that MiCA is pushed through as quickly as possible so we have a regulatory framework within which crypto assets can actually be caught.”

And Jay Powell today, with a somewhat mixed message, by discussing the advantages of ‘digital currencies’ – clearly angling towards the use of CBDCs – but hedging his view by placating the regulatory-thirsting politicians by adding that “…to the extent that cryptocurrencies are a means to evade law enforcement and national security that’s not something we should tolerate.”

Finally, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, while describing the DoJ’s new “Kleptocapture” tak force, said they will freeze the assets of ‘Putin’s cronies” with a “focus on cryptocurrencies,” and Treasury Secretary Yellen warned later that “crypto is a channel to watch for sanctions leakage.”

For now, judging from the Citi data, crypto is not being used for sanctions avoidance on anything but a small scale.

All of which is somewhat humorous since, according to the data above, Russians are ‘laundering’ around $10 million in bitcoin a day, while Credit Suisse helped facilitate $100 billion in laundering over the years and it seemed nobody cared…

Your early  currency/gold and silver pricing/Asian and European bourse movements/ and interest rate settings THURSDAY morning 7:30 AM

ONSHORE YUAN: CLOSED DOWN 6.3194

OFFSHORE YUAN: 6.3241

HANG SANG CLOSED UP 123.42 PTS OR 0.55%

2. Nikkei closed UP 184.24 PTS 0.70%

3. Europe stocks  ALL RED EXCEPT FRANCE   

USA dollar INDEX  UP TO  97.54/Euro FALLS TO 1.1081-

3b Japan 10 YR bond yield: RISES TO. +.169/ !!!!(Japan buying 100% of bond issuance)/Japanese yen vs usa cross now at 115.72/ THIS IS TROUBLESOME AS BANK OF JAPAN IS RUNNING OUT OF BONDS TO BUY./JAPAN 10 YR YIELD IS NOW TARGETED AT .11%/JAPAN LOSING CONTROL OF THEIR BOND MARKET//

3c Nikkei now  ABOVE 17,000

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

3e WTI:: 113.40 and Brent: 116.25–

3f Gold UP /JAPANESE Yen UP 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 UP for WTI and UP FOR Brent this morning

3i European bond buying continues to push yields lower on all fronts in the EMU. German 10yr bund RISES TO +.0.063%/Italian 10 Yr bond yield riseS to 1.61% /SPAIN 10 YR BOND YIELD RISES TO 1.04%…ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD/GERMAN BUND: 1.55: DANGEROUS FOR THE ITALIAN BANKING SYSTEM

3j Greek 10 year bond yield RISES TO : 2.39

3k Gold at $1932.40 silver at: 25.40   7 am est) SILVER NEXT RESISTANCE LEVEL AT $30.00

3l USA vs Russian rouble;// Russian rouble DOWN 804/100 in roubles/dollar; ROUBLE AT 110.89

3m oil into the 113 dollar handle for WTI and 116 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 115.72 DESTROYING JAPANESE CITIZENS WITH HIGHER FOOD INFLATION

30 SNB (Swiss National Bank) still intervening again in the markets driving down the FRANC. It is not working: USA/SF this morning .9202– as the Swiss Franc is still rising against most currencies. Euro vs SF 1.0196 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.

USA 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.866 DOWN 1 BASIS PTS

USA 30 YR BOND YIELD: 2.247 DOWN 1 BASIS PTS

USA DOLLAR VS TURKISH LIRA: 14.14

Futures Take Cover As Commodities Go Apeshit

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 08:00 AM

US stock index futures were flat on Thursday as investors assessed the impact of a surge in commodity prices on inflation and economic growth while eyeing news that a Ukraine delegation was headed to talks with Russia offering some hope of a ceasefire as the war in Ukraine enters its second week. Contracts on the Nasdaq 100 were down 0.2% by 7:15 a.m. in New York, after the underlying technology-heavy index rallied Wednesday to its highest level in two weeks. S&P 500 futures were flat and Dow futures declined 0.1%.

We’ll bring the commodity section up because today that’s where all the action is again: Commodities markets have been upended by the Ukraine crisis as big companies withdraw from Russia, lenders pull back from financing deals and the threat of new sanctions deters buyers. WTI soared to its strongest level since 2008 as the knock-on effect of sanctions starve the world of Russian oil supply, a hole that is over 5mm/d and which can’t reasonably be filled on short notice; Brent neared $120 at one point Thursday before dropping back to $115, while European natural gas whipsawed after rising to a fresh record.

Wheat rocketed past $11 a bushel, zinc hit $4,000 a ton, the highest since 2007, and aluminum hit a new record. The meteoric rallies put the Bloomberg Commodity Spot Index on course for its best week since at least the 1960s. Spot gold rises roughly $3 to trade above $1,930/oz. Most base metals trade in the green; LME nickel outperforms peers. European gas futures pare gains. 

Overall, the Bloomberg commodity spot index is having its best week since… the 1973 oil crisis.

Back to stocks, looking at the premarket, Snowflake shares slumped 22% after projecting that product sales growth would slow from its previous triple-digit-percentage pace in the fiscal year, although analysts including at Morgan Stanley remained positive on the software firm. Other notable premarket movers:

  • Samsara (IOT US) jumps 15% in Wednesday’s postmarket session after the maker of GPS fleet-tracking devices and other technologies fourth quarter sales beat estimates and set guidance for fiscal 2023 ahead of consensus.
  • Several analysts covering Veeva (VEEV US) cut their price targets after the software company forecast adjusted earnings per share for 1Q that missed the average analyst estimate. Shares fell 11% in postmarket trading.
  • Anaplan (PLAN US) shares are up 6.6% in postmarket trading after forecasting revenue for the first quarter that topped the average analyst estimate.
  • Pure Storage (PSTG US) gains 8.7% in premarket trading after forecasting 2023 revenue, adjusted operating income and adjusted operating margin that beat expectations.
  • International Paper (IP US) shares rise 1.1% in premarket after the company tells investors during a presentation that it is “actively reassessing, with all of the stakeholders involved, our options for our investment in Ilim.”

Russia’s ostracism continues: MSCI Inc. and FTSE Russell are cutting Russian equities from widely-tracked indexes, while the London Stock Exchange suspends dozens of Russian depositary receipts from trading, isolating the stocks from a large segment of the investment-fund industry. Russia’s credit rating was cut to junk by Moody’s Investors Service and Fitch Ratings amid doubts about its capability and willingness to service debt. The big question now facing Russian debt owners is whether they ever get their money back. A Russian telecommunications company will be the first test of whether Russian companies continue servicing their foreign-currency bonds. Here is the latest overnight news from Ukraine:

  • Next round of Russia-Ukraine discussions could start at 12:00GMT today, according to Belta, citing a Russian Negotiator; with Foreign Minister Lavrov suggesting discussions are to start shortly while the Kremlin remarked that Ukraine is clearly not in a hurry for talks and President Putin’s aide Medinsky says they are still awaiting the arrival of the Ukrainian delegation.
  • Most recently, Russian negotiating delegation says “We are waiting for the arrival of the Ukrainian delegation”, according to Sky News Arabia.
  • Russian Deputy Foreign Minister believes that talks with Ukraine in Belarus can yield results, via Sky News Arabia.
  • Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov says that President Putin and French President Macron are holding phone discussions at the moment. Reported at 10:00GMT/05:00EST
  • US President Biden said Russia is responsible for the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and for devastating human rights abuses.
  • US State Department said Russia is engaged in a full assault on the truth regarding the war in Ukraine and that Russia is throttling Twitter, Facebook and Instagram platforms which Russians rely on for independent information.
  • Canada imposed sanctions on a total of 10 individuals from Russian energy firms Rosneft and Gazprom.
  • FTSE Russell said Russia will be deleted from all FTSE Russell equity indices effective from the open on March 7th, while as portfoliosJapan’s GPIF is looking into announcements by index companies on Russia will need to reflect index changes they track.
  • Fitch downgraded Russia’s sovereign rating from BBB to B; Rating Watch Negative and Moody’s also cut .Russia’s sovereign rating from Baa3 to B3; Outlook Negative which put its at junk status
  • Germany to deliver 2.7k additional anti-air missiles to Ukraine, via AFP citing gov’t sources.
  • Ukraine’s Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council Danilov says that their intelligence is that Russia is set to impose martial law across Russia from March 4th, according to Ukrinform citing the Ukrainian official. Note, this is a report in Ukrainian press and we are yet to see reports on the subject from Russian vendors, as such, proceed with caution. Russian Kremlin subsequently pushed back on such reports.
  • Ukraine has requested that the IAEA asks NATO to close the air above Ukrainian power plants to avoid acts of “nuclear terrorism”.
  • US President Biden is to hold a call with the Quad leaders Thursday morning re. Ukraine, at 14:00GMT/09:00EST

Besides the chaos unleashed by the Ukraine war, global equity markets have been whipsawed this year as worries around a slowdown in economic growth were compounded by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, fueling a surge across commodities from oil to grains.

Investors are now watching central banks to see if they are likely to stay the course on aggressively tightening monetary policy, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell managed to “appease risk-markets by ruling out a 50 basis-points hike in March, while simultaneously promising inflation vigilance at following meetings,” Citigroup Inc. strategists William O’Donnell and Edward Acton wrote in a note.

“It’s really time for investors to be prepared for more volatility, especially in the bond markets,” as the Fed has yet to commence balance-sheet reduction, Nancy Davis, chief investment officer at Quadratic Capital Management LLC, said on Bloomberg Television.

“It was quite unusual that Powell was so explicit,” said Stefan Koopman, an economist at Rabobank. “It remains to be seen if the FOMC will be less aggressive in its monetary policy tightening because of the war in Ukraine. It’s also worth emphasizing that this war won’t be settled anytime soon, even as markets derive some optimism on any news of new peace talks. This will continue to keep upwards pressure on (agri-)commodity prices, downward pressure on long-term safe haven yields and some continuously volatile equity markets.”

Bucking the trend in growing pessimism, Citigroup strategists upgraded U.S. stocks and the technology sector to overweight, saying growth trades should benefit from the recent sharp drop in real yields. Of course, this happens one day after Citi closed its oil short at a 11% loss in a month, so maybe this is just the right signal to pile on those shorts.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index fell 0.6% with utilities and travel and leisure stocks among the biggest decliners while shares in firms with exposure to Russia tumbled. Basic resources shares are the best performers in the Stoxx Europe 600 Thursday amid soaring supply concerns across commodities: Glencore, Anglo American and Rio Tinto lead surge for miners; OMV, Repsol and Neste are among the gainers in the energy sector. The Stoxx Europe 600 falls 0.6%; renewables stocks such as Vestas and Siemens Gamesa decline. While all other sectors have declined in Europe this year, the basic resources and energy subgroups have been the sole gainers in the region amid soaring prices. The basic resources sub-index rises as much as 3.9% and trades at the highest since 2008, while the energy segment hit a record high on Thursday before reversing its advance.

Earlier in the session, Asian stocks advanced as comments by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell gave investors some relief amid concerns over the Russia-Ukraine war. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose as much as 0.9%, lifted by financial and industrial shares. Japan and South Korea equities were among the best performers, getting boosts from electronics and auto makers. In his testimony to U.S. lawmakers, Powell backed a quarter-point rate increase later this month while vowing to combat inflation in light of global political risks. The modest increase helped ease investor fears of aggressive Fed policies to control the pace of price increases even as oil continued to surge due to the war. “Capital may be flowing back to risk assets for bargain-hunting opportunities after the severe selloff over the last few days,” said Margaret Yang, a strategist at DailyFX. “Still, geopolitical uncertainties may cap the extent of the rally until progress is made between Russia and Ukraine in negotiating a ceasefire agreement.” Asian equities were on track for their first weekly gain in three, as the region remained resilient given its relatively limited exposure to Russia. The Asian stock benchmark has declined less than 6% so far this year, compared with drops of about 8% in European and U.S. counterparts. Chinese stocks fluctuated after the Wall Street Journal reported that the nation is exploring an exit from its zero-tolerance approach to Covid-19. The Indonesia market was closed for a holiday.

Japanese equities climbed, following a rally in U.S. peers after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the economy is expanding enough to withstand rate hikes while pledging to be judicious in removing stimulus. Banks and trading houses were the biggest boosts to the Topix, which rose 1.2%. Daikin and M3 Inc. were the largest contributors to a 0.7% rise in the Nikkei 225. The yen slightly extended its 0.5% overnight loss the dollar. “There is still concern about how high rates will go in the medium term,” said Shogo Maekawa, global market strategist at JP Morgan Asset Management. “But for now Powell maintained his outlook of a 0.25 percentage point hike so now we’re past the first point of uncertainty.”

In rates, Treasuries were relatively calm with yields richer by 2bp-3bp across the curve. Curve spreads are broadly within a basis point of Wednesday’s closing levels following extreme volatility in yields and spreads over past two sessions; 10-year yields around 1.86%, ~2bp lower on the day while gilts, bunds are cheaper by 9bp and 6bp in the sector. Gilts lead broad fixed-income selloff, while dollar rallies and stocks fall. Gilts lead a broad selloff in fixed income, bear-flattening with short end about 9bps cheaper. Traders move forward wagers on 125bps of BOE tightening to November from December previously. Bunds also bear-steepen but are ~5bp richer to gilts. IG dollar issuance slate includes CBA 5-part, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust 3Y/5Y and Honda 3Y/5Y/10Y; sixteen issuers priced $18b Wednesday across 28 tranches in busiest day in six months. Focal points of U.S. session include Fed Chair Powell’s second day of congressional testimony and a busy economic data slate. Three-month dollar Libor jumps more than 6bp, biggest increase since Feb. 11.     

In FX, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index climbed 0.2% and the greenback was steady to higher against its Group-of-10 peers; Canadian and Australian dollars were the top performers as commodities powered higher. Treasuries inched up, led by the 2-year tenor. The euro slipped for a fourth day against the greenback, after falling to the lowest since May 2020 on Wednesday. Bunds fell as they caught up with Treasuries, and Italian bonds extended their slide and underperformance against euro-area peers after demand fell at a sale of Spanish debt. The pound weakened against the dollar but rose to its strongest level versus the euro since July 2016 as sterling proved relatively resilient to market shocks from the war in Ukraine. Gilts fell after money markets increased bets on Bank of England rate hikes after the most dovish member of the Monetary Policy Committee, Silvana Tenreyro, said she expects “upside surprises on inflation” on Wednesday. Aussie rose to the highest level since November against the greenback, and neared its 200-DMA, before paring gains. Aussie sovereign bonds extended losses made after Fed Chair Jerome Powell reaffirmed his support for a 25 basis- point rate hike this month. The yen weakened for a second day amid broad strength in the greenback. Japan’s 30-year bond pared an intraday loss after the sale of this tenor confirmed resilient demand. Ruble continues to underperform EMFX peers.

In commodities, the rally faded slightly after assets from gas to oil surged earlier as buyers rushed to stock up on materials due to fears of how the increasing economic isolation of Russia will impact trade. Oil pares some gains. Brent trades at $115 after rising as high as $119 a barrel. WTI falls back to $112 after soaring to the highest since 2008 as buyers shun Russian crude. Investors bet that oil will rise further. Spot gold rises roughly $3 to trade above $1,930/oz. Most base metals trade in the green; LME nickel outperforms peers. European gas futures pare gains. 

Bitcoin has been erring lower throughout the session after an initial move higher fizzled out, though, Bitcoin remains towards the top-end of recent levels capped by the USD 45k mark.

Looking at day ahead now, and we’ll hear from Fed Chair Powell again, this time before the Senate Banking Committee. Other central bank speakers include the Fed’s Barkin and Williams, Bank of Canada Governor Macklem and the ECB’s de Cos. On top of that, we’ll also get the minutes from the ECB’s February meeting. On the data side, releases include the global services and composite PMIs for February, as well as the ISM services index for February from the US. Other releases include the Euro Area unemployment rate and PPI for January, while in the US we’ll get the weekly initial jobless claims and January’s factory orders. Finally, earnings releases include Broadcom and Costco.

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures down 0.1% to 4,375.50
  • STOXX Europe 600 down 0.3% to 444.91
  • MXAP up 0.6% to 181.77
  • MXAPJ up 0.4% to 595.82
  • Nikkei up 0.7% to 26,577.27
  • Topix up 1.2% to 1,881.80
  • Hang Seng Index up 0.6% to 22,467.34
  • Shanghai Composite little changed at 3,481.11
  • Sensex down 0.8% to 55,035.74
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 0.5% to 7,151.40
  • Kospi up 1.6% to 2,747.08
  • German 10Y yield little changed at 0.05%
  • Euro down 0.4% to $1.1077
  • Brent Futures up 2.8% to $116.11/bbl
  • Brent Futures up 2.8% to $116.12/bbl
  • Gold spot down 0.1% to $1,926.29
  • U.S. Dollar Index up 0.27% to 97.65

Top Overnight News from Bloomberg

  • Russian forces pressed ahead with their offensive in Ukraine as the war entered its second week, firing missiles at Kyiv overnight and stepping up their campaign to take cities in the coastal south
  • The sanctions the U.S. and Europe are slapping on Russia’s economy and the billionaires around President Vladimir Putin are unprecedented in scope. Some experts wonder if these powers have made clear what actually needs to happen to get those restrictions lifted
  • Bank of Japan board member Junko Nakagawa says there is no need to make a significant change in monetary policy for now in response to events in Ukraine, though the situation warrants close attention
  • Commodities are on course for their most stunning weekly surge in records that go back to when Nikita Khrushchev was in the Kremlin
  • European natural gas rose to a fresh record near 200 euros a megawatt-hour. The European Commission wants at least 80% of gas storage facilities in the EU to be filled by Sept. 30, accelerating plans to reduce the bloc’s dependence on Russian gas, Der Spiegel reported, citing a draft paper on a new energy security strategy to be presented next week
  • As traders try to navigate a global crude market upended by the invasion of Ukraine, an offer of a Russian Far East cargo that drew no bids suggested that spot differentials on the nation’s oil may weaken sharply

A more detailed look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk

Asia-Pac stocks traded mostly positive after the gains in the US where stocks and yields climbed amid peace talk hopes and hawkish central bank rhetoric, but with upside capped as the region digested a slowdown in Chinese Caixin Services PMI data. ASX 200 was underpinned by a commodity surge, spearheaded by the energy sector as Brent rose to its highest level since 2013. Nikkei 225 benefitted from a weak JPY but with gains capped as Tokyo and neighbours seek an extension of COVID measures. Hang Seng and Shanghai Comp were mixed with the mainland clouded after PBoC’s liquidity drain and soft PMI data

Top Asian News

  • Asia Stocks Rise as Powell Comments Boost Investor Mood Amid War
  • Indian Agrochemical Firm UPL Said to Draw Takeover Interest
  • Developer Shares Gain on Regulator’s Remarks: Evergrande Update
  • Hong Kong Reports 56,827 Covid Cases, 144 Deaths Thursday

European bourses, Euro Stoxx 50 -0.5%, are moving in-line with the generally cautious mood as we await the commencement of the Russia-Ukrainian negotiations, which are set for around 12:00GMT/07:00EST; though, we are yet to see the Ukrainian delegation arrive. Within sectors, the picture is mixed after initial relative underperformance in cyclical names. US futures are modestly softer, ES -0.2%, but have been fairly contained amid the geopolitical developments awaiting US data and Chair Powell’s second day of testimony

Top European News

  • European Gas Hits Record Near 200 Euros With Sanctions in Focus
  • U.K. Feb. Composite PMI 59.9 vs Flash Reading 60.2
  • Traders Stockpiling Bonds Are Causing a Great Collateral Squeeze
  • Russia’s Gas Giant Shunned by European Traders and Landlord

In FX, high stakes and anxiety levels in the FX space as Russia and Ukraine head for ceasefire fire talks from around  12:00GMT/ 07:00EST. DXY firm either side of 97.500 as yields rise again and risk aversion resurfaces. Aussie underpinned near 0.7300 and the 200 DMA as industrial metals remain strong. Franc rebounds following above forecast Swiss CPI in stark contrast to Lira after latest acceleration in headline and pipeline Turkish inflation; USD/CHFf sub-0.9200, EUR/CHF circa 1.0200 and Usd/Try above 14.000. Euro still lagging on conflict contagion and Rouble back down towards all time lows; EUR/USD under 1.1100 and Usd/Rub eyeing 119.00

In commodities, WTI & are off best levels, at USD 116.50/bbl and USD 119.84/bbl for WTI April and Brent May respectively,Brent but remain at elevated levels ahead of negotiations. Japan plans to hold a ministerial meeting on Friday to compile measures to respond to higher oil prices. Gazprom is shipping gas to Europe via Ukraine, in-line with requests; separately, the Yamal-Europe pipeline westbound gas flows to Germany from Poland have stopped, via Reuters citing Gascade data. Iran’s Energy Minister Owji says domestic oil production can hit maximum capacity in one/two months following a nuclear agreement being reached, via Reuters citing a Telegram channel. Spot / are supported but around familiar parameters while base metals experienced noted overnightgold silver upside, particularly nickel and zinc.

US Event Calendar

  • 8:30am: U.S. Initial Jobless Claims, Feb. 26, est. 225k, prior 232k
    • Continuing Claims, Feb. 19, est. 1420k, prior 1476k
  • 9:45am: U.S. Markit US Services PMI, Feb. F, est. 56.7, prior 56.7
  • 10am: U.S. Durable Goods Orders, Jan. F, est. 1.6%, prior 1.6%; -Less Transportation, Jan. F, est. 0.7%, prior 0.7%
    • Cap Goods Orders Nondef Ex Air, Jan. F, no est., prior 0.9%
    • Cap Goods Ship Nondef Ex Air, Jan. F, no est., prior 1.9%
  • 10am: U.S. Factory Orders, Jan., est. 0.7%, prior -0.4%

Central bank speakers

  • 10am: Fed Chair Powell Testifies Before Senate Panel
  • 11:30am: Bank of Canada’s Macklem Gives Economic Progress Report
  • 12pm: Fed’s Barkin Speaks on Economy
  • 12:45pm: Bank of Canada’s Macklem to Hold Press Conference
  • 3:30pm: Bank of Canada Speaks to Lawmakers at Committee Hearing
  • 6pm: Fed’s Williams Takes Part in Discussion on the Economy

DB’s Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

We go to press this morning after another volatile 24 hours in markets, one that saw equities and sovereign bond markets retrace the prior day’s declines (completely so in the case of American assets), while energy prices and inflation breakevens have kept marching higher. Policymakers are facing an unenviable situation over the near-term; inflationary pressures are mounting while the broader outlook grows more uncertain by the day. The latest commodity price spike overnight has now taken Brent Crude oil above $118/bbl, and it’s only slightly retraced that since to $116.75/bbl. Bear in mind that before the US warning of an invasion in mid-February it was trading just above $90/bbl. That spike in oil prices has occured as data yesterday showed Euro Area inflation reached to its highest level since the formation of the single currency. And as our economists have already written, if this commodity shock persists then that’s going to have negative implications for European growth, raising the spectre of a significant slowdown ahead. Indeed yesterday we saw the 2s10s Treasury yield curve hit another low that hasn’t been matched since March 2020 despite the selloff in yields (more below), speaking to the worry that central banks will have to hike in to a deteriorating outlook. Likewise in Europe, after an historic rally the day before that saw 10yr bunds blow through z scores (see my CoTD from yesterday, link here) rates sold right back off yesterday. It’s thus timely that our European rates team will be hosting a call at noon London time today, which you can register for here.

This morning however, Asian markets have followed the rebound in the US and Europe, supported by the comments by Fed Chair Powell that have helped to reduce uncertainty about the Fed’s near-term intentions (more on which below). The Nikkei (+0.76%), Hang Seng (+0.63%) and the Kospi (+1.45%) are all trading higher this morning, with the latter’s advance coming as South Korea reported GDP grew by +1.2% in Q4 (vs. +1.1% expected). Mainland stocks in China have posted a more mixed performance however, with the Shanghai Composite (+0.10%) just about in positive territory whilst the CSI (-0.29%) has lost ground, which has occurred after China’s Caixin services PMI edged down to a 6-month low of 50.2 (vs. 50.7 expected), so just about in expansionary territory still. US equity futures are fairly steady this morning as well, with those on the S&P 500 up +0.11%.

In terms of the latest in Ukraine, there has been continued fighting in the country, although the prospect of talks today between Russia and Ukraine has offered a semblance of hope. Although the ruble strengthened slightly on news of the further peace talks, the broader financial situation hasn’t appeared to improve much for Russia, with Moody’s and Fitch downgrading their sovereign debt to junk status overnight, while MSCI reported it would remove Russia from its equity indices due to issues of market access. The Bank of Russia reported that equity indices would remain closed today, as they have all week so far.

For markets, one of the biggest ways the conflict has manifested itself is this massive spike in commodities, with yesterday bringing yet another round of broad-based increases that will only intensify the inflationary pressures already here. Brent crude ended the day up +7.58% at $112.93/bbl, which was its highest closing level since 2014 and took its YTD gains beyond +40%. Then overnight it surpassed that to reach its highest levels since 2013 and take its YTD gains above +50%. Meanwhile, WTI also saw a similar move higher, rising +6.95% to its highest level since 2013 at $110.60/bbl, and this morning it’s now above $114/bbl. Those increases follow President Biden’s indication that he’d be open to the imposition of sanctions on Russian oil and gas, saying that “nothing is off the table” when he was asked about the potential of the US banning Russian oil imports. Indeed, influential US Senators began drafting a bill that would ban US imports of Russian oil and gas products. When it came to natural gas, we saw some significant price increases there too, with futures in Europe up by a massive +36.05% to €165.54/MWh, which leaves them just shy of their pre-Christmas peak. This pressure could be seen across the board, with aluminium (+2.62%) at a record and wheat prices (+5.67%) reaching levels not seen since 2008, which just shows the extent to which the current conflict is affecting commodity markets right now.

Those commodity price rises came amidst further inflation records, with the Euro Area flash CPI print for February coming in at +5.8% (vs. +5.6% expected), which is its highest level since the formation of the single currency. Core CPI was also up to +2.7% (vs. +2.6% expected), another record since the Euro’s formation. The effects of all this were evident in market-based measures of inflation expectations, with the 10yr German breakeven up by a further +9.0bps to 2.28%, its highest level in a decade, and its Italian counterpart (+4.8bps) also hit a decade high of 2.08%. Interestingly, we heard from ECB Chief Economist Lane later in the European session, who said ahead of the ECB meeting next week, that “the schedule for the March staff projections exercise has been revised in order to take into account the implications of the Russian invasion of Ukraine”, which means that they’ll include the upside inflation release from yesterday as well. He struck a balanced note in his speech, acknowledging that an adverse supply shock means that “the horizon over which inflation returns to the target level could be lengthened in order to avoid pronounced falls in economic activity and employment”. But then he also said that “it is essential to avoid that a spell of temporarily-high inflation pressures – even if arising from a supply shock – becomes entrenched by permanently altering longer-term inflation expectations.”

Staying on that central bank theme, we had some significant headlines from Fed Chair Powell yesterday as he testified before the House Financial Services Committee. First, he said that “I am inclined to propose and support a 25 basis-point rate hike” at the March meeting, so steering away from the more hawkish possibility of a 50bp move that markets had already begun to price out. That said, he noted “we would be prepared to move more aggressively” if inflation remained high, so not ruling out moves larger than 25bps if justified. The Chair also remarked that policy may need to tighten above neutral, which he put as the policy rate between 2%-2.5%, as opposed to simply being less accommodative. Meanwhile on Ukraine, Powell said that the “implications for the US economy are highly uncertain, and we will be monitoring the situation closely.”

That confirmation of likely rate hikes ahead helped Treasury yields fully retrace the previous days’ decline, with the 10yr yield up +14.9bps to 1.88%. As mentioned at the top however, the more policy-sensitive 2yr yield (+17.1bps) saw a larger rise that saw +23.5bps of hikes priced back into money markets through 2022. The curve thus bear flattened, and the 2s10s curve fell to 35.9bps, after falling as low as 31.3bps intraday. The 2s10s curve has now flattened by more than 120bps since its peak at the end of Q1 last year. Those movements in Treasuries echoed what took place in Europe, where yields on 10yr bunds (+9.9bps) moved back into positive territory, and those on 10yr OATs (+11.9bps), gilts (+13.1bps) and BTPs (+15.3bps) all moved higher as well.

For equities, they managed to stage something of a recovery against this backdrop, with the S&P 500 (+1.86%) actually moving back into positive territory for the week. That was part of an incredibly broad-based advance that left 466 companies in the index in the green on the day, which is the second-highest so far this year. In Europe the advances weren’t quite as strong, with the STOXX 600 only up +0.90%, but indices across the continent moved higher including the DAX (+0.69%), the CAC 40 (+1.59%) and the FTSE 100 (+1.36%). When it came to Russian assets, stock trading was closed for a third consecutive day, although depositary receipts in London continued to decline yesterday, with those for Gazprom down -23.50%, whilst Sberbank fell another -78.43%.

Another central bank announcement yesterday came from the Bank of Canada, who became the latest to start hiking rates for the first time since the pandemic. They increased their target for the overnight rate by 25bps to 0.5%, and said in their statement that “the Governing Council expects interest rates will need to rise further.” In reference to the Ukrainian conflict, they said that the invasion was “putting further upward pressure on prices for both energy and food-related commodities”, which along with other factors meant that “inflation is now expected to be higher in the near term than projected in January.” This hawkish-leaning language meant that the Canadian dollar was the strongest performing G10 currency yesterday, gaining +0.88% against the US Dollar, and markets are fully pricing in another hike at their next meeting in April.

Aside from the Euro Area CPI release there wasn’t much in the way other data yesterday. However, we did get the ADP’s report of private payrolls from the US, which rose by +475k in February (vs. 375k expected). That comes ahead of tomorrow’s jobs report, where our US economists are anticipating growth of +300k in nonfarm payrolls.

To the day ahead now, and we’ll hear from Fed Chair Powell again before the Senate Banking Committee. Other central bank speakers include the Fed’s Barkin and Williams, Bank of Canada Governor Macklem and the ECB’s de Cos. On top of that, we’ll also get the minutes from the ECB’s February meeting. On the data side, releases include the global services and composite PMIs for February, as well as the ISM services index for February from the US. Other releases include the Euro Area unemployment rate and PPI for January, while in the US we’ll get the weekly initial jobless claims and January’s factory orders. Finally, earnings releases include Broadcom and Costco.

END

3. ASIAN AFFAIRS

i)THURSDAY MORNING// WEDNESDAY  NIGHT

SHANGHAI CLOSED DOWN 3.03 PTS OR 0.09%       //Hang Sang CLOSED UP 123.42 PTS OR 0.55%  /The Nikkei closed UP 184.24 PTS or 0.70%       //Australia’s all ordinaires CLOSED UP 0.55%  /Chinese yuan (ONSHORE) closed DOWN 6.3192    /Oil UP TO 113.40 dollars per barrel for WTI and UP TO 116.25 for Brent. Stocks in Europe OPENED  ALL RED EXCEPT FRANCE       //  ONSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN AGAINST THE DOLLAR AT 6.3192. OFFSHORE YUAN CLOSED DOWN ON THE DOLLAR AT 6.3241: /ONSHORE YUAN TRADING ABOVE LEVEL OF OFFSHORE YUAN/ONSHORE YUAN  TRADING WEAKER AGAINST USA DOLLAR/OFF SHORE WEAKER//

3 a./NORTH KOREA/ SOUTH KOREA

///NORTH KOREA

3B JAPAN

3c CHINA

CHINA

China considers the possibility of abandoning their zero covid policy with the introduction of Paxlovid.  They are developing their own Messenger RNA vaccines which may prove fatal.

A far better choice would be to give all citizens Ivermectin

(zerohedge)

China Considers Possibility Of Abandoning “Zero COVID” Policy

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 08:40 PM

After more than two years of imposing some of the world’s most restrictive lockdowns on its population, Beijing is finally preparing for a world without its strenuous “ZERO Covid” measures.

WSJ reports that Chinese officials are looking into the use of travel bubbles modeled on what was used during the Winter Olympics.

Collecting data on new antiviral drugs and scouting sites abroad for future production of homegrown Chinese mRNA vaccines, according to people familiar with the matter. However, on the other hand, images of patients in Hong Kong lying on open-air gurneys has intensified the sense of public panic.  They now see the former British colony as something of a cross between a science experiment and an actualy community.

Mainland experts now see the former British colony as a “stress test scenario,” as well as a source of data on the effectiveness of various treatments and insight into fighting severe infection surges without resorting to hard lockdowns, according to a person familiar with the discussions.;

While COVID likely won’t ease before next spring,  the two sources from within China’s government told WSJ that officials in departments covering transportation, customs and border control have been tasked since January with exploring adjustments to COVID control policies that can eventually be presented to China’s top leadership.

Additionally, officials China’s departments covering transportation, customs and border control have been tasked since January with exploring potential changes to China’s COVID control policies. The hope is that these potential changes –  or “adjustments” – will eventually be presented to China’s top leadership, according to a person with knowledge.

In another line of questioning, WSJ added that the approach and timeline for a relaxation of COVID controls isn’t fixed and could change depending damn whether a levee of corporate bankruptcies breaks.

Pfizer’s unleashing of its drug Paxlovid will play a major role in protecting the help of billions as members of the public and lawmakers see the drug as critical in keeping Americans alive in theater.

And on the positive side, the development and introduction of China’s homegrown mRNA vaccines could also give China another tool that would allow for a relaxation of controls.

However, one critical pitfall for China is the public’s attitude as cases surge in Hong Kong.

But word out of Hong Kong shows that residents are preferring to flee instead of risking being locked up in quarantine.

Presently, the Chinese protocol remains  sending every positive case regardless of severity, to a medical facility for treatment, which Powell warned would inundate hospitals in the event of a larger outbreak.

“Hospitals can treat patients,” said Liu. “But they cannot fight panic.”

But by far the biggest obstacle for China as it seeks to raise its vaccination rate (in order to push for a lower death rate).

News of a potential pullback out of Chinese yuan, trading both onshore and offshore, sliding to session lows. Meanwhile, shares of casino operators with exposure to Macau have climbed on the news. They include shares of Las Vegas Sands, Melco and Wynn Resorts.

end

CHINA/RUSSIA

4/EUROPEAN AFFAIRS//UK AFFFAIRS

UK/ GAZPROM//NATURAL GAS/OIL

Interesting:  Gazprom’s London affiliate has been kicked out over the Ukraine invasion

(zerohedge)

Gazprom’s London Landlord Kicks Out Russian Gas Traders Over Ukraine

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 05:45 AM

Gazprom, the Russian state-affiliated energy giant, is being thrown out of its central London offices following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

It’s only the latest decision whereby the British energy giant is being shunned for its ties to the Russian state.

The firm’s energy-trading arm is being kicked out of its central London offices in the wake of the Russian incursion into Ukraine, it’s only the latest blow for a firm that has long been viewed with suspicion. British Land Co., the firm’s landlord, said that the firm’s contract on the space near Regent’s Park had been previously scheduled to end n 2025, but instead the firm planned to end the contract “as soon as possible”.

“This is a fast-moving, complex situation, and we will continue to review all measures that are available to us, while remaining fully compliant with sanctions requirements,” British Land said in the statement.

The landlord added that it was “shocked and saddened” by events in Ukraine.

Losing Gazprom is a pretty serious blow for British Land: Gazprom is one of the firm’s top 10 clients in terms of rents paid for office properties. Its payments top those made by Microsoft, Vodafone and Deutsche Bank.

The trading arm currently occupies the top floors of the building at 20 Triton Street, a curving lattice across from the park bordered by rows of houses owned by wealthy Russians. The unit trades gas, power and emissions in the European market. It supplied more than one-fifth of the UK’s industrial and commercial gas in 2020.

This invasion of Ukraine has provoked a crisis in European energy markets; natural gas trading in Europe is trading at the equivalent of $340/barrel of oil.

Gazprom M&T has more than 450 employees in London, and the location of its offices had for a long time allowed it to form “excellent relationships” with other major firms. That’s according to the firm’s website. 

The firm, which is wholly owned by a German subsidiary of Gazprom, and it opened its first office in London in 1999 with only two traders.

END

EU/RUSSIA SECURITIES

More fallout from sanctions as Russian stocks are severed by LSE and MSCI

(zerohedge)

Russia’s “Toxic” Stocks Cut By LSE, MSCI As Western Sanctions Hit Hard

BY TYLER DURDEN

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 08:25 AM

Russia’s financial connections with the rest of the world are getting severed by western sanctions. Since Monday, Moscow has kept its stock market closed, the longest closure since the 1998 Russian financial crisis, as offshore markets for Russian Global Depositary Receipts (GDRs) have been hammered. 

On Thursday, the London Stock Exchange (LSE) announced that trading for 27 companies with strong ties to Russia had been suspended hours after MSCI Inc. deleted Russian stocks from its widely-followed indices, according to Financial Times

LSE suspended trading for En+, Sberbank, Gazprom, Lukoil, Polyus, among a couple of dozen others. It said the move was due to “events in Ukraine, in light of market conditions, and in order to maintain orderly markets.”

Another index provider, MSCI, said market participants view the Russian market as “uninvestable” and will remove Russian securities from emerging market indexes effective on March 9. 

LSE CEO David Schwimmer told Bloomberg TV it suspended trading of Russian GDRs, also noting that a little less than 1% of total income comes from Russia and Ukrainian operations. 

Readers may recall yesterday. We first highlighted how the Dow Jones Russia GDR Index, an index designed to track the top Russian GDRs that trade on the LSE, plunged a mind-numbing 97% in just a few days and wiped out $572 billion. 

Onshore trading in Russian stocks has been at a standstill for the fourth day; many offshore Russian assets are being marked to near zero. Traders report difficulty unwinding clients’ positions in Russian stocks as demand for these assets plunged on western sanctions.  

“We can’t sell our Russian stocks,” said Russel Chesler, head of investments and capital markets at fund manager VanEck Associates Corp. in Sydney. 

“Even last week our brokers wouldn’t sell them when the markets were open, and this will just deteriorate things further for investors,” Chesler said. 

Marek Drimal, a strategist covering Europe, the Middle East, and Africa at Societe Generale SA in London, called Russian assets “toxic.” 

“Onshore markets are barricaded and basically uninvestable, while offshore markets have been hammered. The speed of events as they are happening is just mind-boggling,” Drimal said.

Stateside, on Thursday, VanEck announced a problem for US investors who had Russian exposure via the VanEck Russia ETF (RSX), the world’s largest Russia-focused exchange-traded fund. It said, “although shares of the Fund are expected to continue trading on Cboe BZX Exchange, Inc., there can be no assurance that an active market will be maintained for the Fund’s shares.”

The bottom line for readers is many of these indexes tracking Russian GDRs are practically worthless, as we detailed yesterday in the collapse of Dow Jones Russia GDRs. When onshore markets finally reopen, Russia’s wealth funds (or the national plunge protection team) will have a lot of work to do as they may deploy billions of dollars to rescue stocks. 

end

5. RUSSIAN AND MIDDLE EASTERN AFFAIRS

This is a must read. Tom Luongo is bang on as to what is going on

(Tom Luongo)

Luongo: Opening Salvos Thrown, What Are Putin’s Next Steps In Ukraine?

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 03:30 AM

Authored by Tom Luongo via Gold, Goats, ‘n Guns blog,

Last week I wrote that Russian President Vladimir Putin rewrote the rules for the geopolitical game board. A week into his campaign to officially “demilitarize and de-Nazify Ukraine” it’s clear to me that Putin’s ambitions lie far beyond this stated goal.

He will, however, stick to that script until that part of the campaign is complete.

Today I want to start outlining where we go next and to do that we have to describe where we are.

Looking around the reports that are the most credible (and properly bracketing for any partisanship) we are staring at a complete, effective neutralization of the Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF) to hold any of the ethnically-dominant areas of Ukraine.

In a post for my patrons on February 25th, responding to an excellent article by Alistair MacLeod I wrote the following:

MacLeodBoth sides probably do not know how fragile the Eurozone banking system is, with both the ECB and its national central bank shareholders already having liabilities greater than their assets. In other words, rising interest rates have broken the euro system and an economic and financial catastrophe on its eastern flank will probably trigger its collapse.

I’ve been banging my shoe on this table for 3 years now.  If the US/NATO respond with some kind of guerilla war here to hang Ukraine like an albatross around Putin’s neck, as we should expect, then Europe is in big trouble financially.  

Because the financial war will keep escalating as Putin responds militarily.  Remember, he’s openly threatened the ‘decision makers’ here.  And no amount of mealy-mouthed CIA/MI6 disinformation will deter him from action anymore.  

This is always what I meant by “spooks start civil wars, militaries end them.”  There is no more War for Ukraine.  

I still believe that. This isn’t a war for Ukraine, it’s a war for the future of the entire world. Ukraine represents the hill both Davos and Russia have chosen to live or die on.

The Afghanistan Gambit

Davos has refused to let President Zelensky surrender because if he does then legally there is no more war to sanction Russia with. It’s not Putin’s War at that point, it is a settled conflict and terms negotiated.

At that point what’s left of Ukraine can be carved up into pieces. It’s way to early for that to occur, so you’ll see constant threats of peace talks, but that’s only to assuage the fears of the capital markets, which is where Davos has the most control over the situation.

The primary goal of the information war from the West is to push capital markets as far in its favor as possible, keeping things within the bounds of the ‘acceptable’ to avoid any short-term pain. Gold is still under it’s all-time high, which is just hilarious.

That said, in that same post I put up this map of a future Ukraine which I felt, conservatively, would be in effect by the end of this year. Events are moving far faster than that, however.

Chernihiv and Sumy are also in play, as is Lviv as a bargaining chip to Poland. As Fmr. Col. Douglas Macgregor pointed out on Fox News recently, everything east of the Dnieper River will become part of a new Novorussia, if not part of the Russian Federation.

Clearly this is Putin’s initial goal, the partitioning of Ukraine. He’s moved militarily, the EU and the rest of the West have responded financially. Their hope is to turn Ukraine into a quagmire, a la Afghanistan (per Hillary Clinton’s recent remarks), which they hope Russia will not be able to sustain after being choked off from the global economy.

The financial sanctions regime put in place so far are brutal but also full of holes wide enough for Putin to maneuver within and around because of the well understood facts of Russia’s dominance as a global supplier of life-sustaining commodities for the entire world.

This is an asymmetric war.

There isn’t much farther the West can go financially. They’ve seized Bank of Russia foreign assets, for pity’s sake. What other weapons do they really have in their arsenal which can threaten Russia with?

They have, in effect, executed their nuclear first strike against Russia. Once you’ve gone nuclear, where do you go next? Real nukes? Yes, that’s a possibility, sadly, given the people we’re talking about.

On the other hand, Russia has so far only committed the necessary troops to neutralize Ukraine. So, in this respect, big advantage Russia.

Facts on the ground are facts. Russia has taken territory it can maintain. By not targeting civilians or civilian infrastructure, Russia has put itself in a very good position to not face an insane insurgency which the West can finance in the way that it has in past conflicts.

Much of NATO’s in-country assets have been neutralized. And you know this because the propaganda and rhetoric have been so thoroughly crude, cartoonish and strident. Again, ask why the financial and informational war has been so intense?

Is it because the West thinks it’s winning or because it’s trying desperately to pivot domestic populations to solidarity after losing massive credibility during the last year with COVID-19 related lockdowns, vax passes, and the unpersoning of whole swaths of Western society?

The Real Russian Cauldron

Now let’s ask the next question that keeps coming up.

Why has Putin not shut off the gas to a Europe that is rapidly running out of it?

Because to do so would target civilian populations. If he’s not targeting civilians in Ukraine to minimize their anger at being invaded, then why would he use that weapon now against civilians in Germany who hold the key to getting overthrowing the insane politicians and oligarchs who provoked this war in the first place?

It doesn’t make any strategic sense. It also speaks to a kind of confidence in Russia’s military position in Ukraine, thereby lending credence to the reports that Russia is achieving her strategic goals on the ground in Ukraine.

Okay, that’s the lay of the land.

So, what are Putin’s real goals? Like I said at the outset, nothing less than breaking the back of Davos and their agents in the US/UK who have tormented Russia for more than a century.

How does he achieve that goal?

Putin is creating incontrovertible facts which his opponents must respond to. Again, he’s setting the operational tempo, like I said last week.

Their counter-moves are insipid and predictable. Ukraine has asked for admission into the EU. The EU is open to this. Georgia is now doing the same thing. Turkey is livid. Hungary is not getting involved.

No one is willing to actually send arms to Ukraine.

What does the EU achieve by adding Ukraine? Do they think because they signed a piece of paper with a person who is de facto not in charge of his country going to change the facts on the ground there?

Do they still think “stroke of the pen, law of the land, kinda cool” matters at this point?

Because if the EU accepts Ukraine into its ranks, then it will be responsible for the next stage of escalation, not Putin. It will then have to figure out how to oust the Russians from their territory.

Last night President Sundowner made the entire US State of the Union about Ukraine. Do they really think a president with an approval rating that is, at best 37%, capable of marshalling the US into fighting a war for Europe against Russia after bankrupting us with NATO for three generations?

If they are, they are more delusional than even I’ve contemplated at this point.

Is NATO prepared to expand now into Ukraine under the umbrella of EU membership?

What’s obvious to me is the neocons and neoliberals controlling the West think they can turn Ukraine into a quagmire for Putin, but what if Putin thinks he can turn Ukraine into a quagmire for them?

Russia is not capable of conquering Europe. But he doesn’t need to to defeat them. He just needs to create a version of the map I posted above.

The Limits of Money Wars

If Putin and Russia have achieved, or are about to achieve, all of their military goals in Ukraine, what do they do to secure those gains?

They have to neutralize the financial war waged against them and create an environment where Europe spends money it doesn’t have, with failing political capital domestically, and bankrupts them completely.

And the first move along those lines was just announced by the Russian Finance Ministry today (VPN and Deepl translator needed).

What does this mean? It means simply that Russia has now, in effect, begun the remonetization of gold for domestic purposes. By removing the VAT on gold purchases Russian citizens can now offset their currency risk with gold and stabilize the domestic monetary situation.

The first step in offsetting financial warfare from the West is allowing the domestic population to be immune to collapses in their currency from foreign actors pulling capital out of the country. Companies doing international business now have an alternative to hold time deposits which are far less volatile than the ruble without penalty. Gold becomes the coin of Russia’s international business.

It’s the beginning of the process of draining physical gold from the global market and control over its price by the ponzi schemes that are the COMEX and the LBMA.

This is a first step in rebuilding confidence in the Russian banking system rather than what we’re seeing in the West which is the ritualistic assault on privacy, wealth generation and the value of our labor, which is degrading rapidly thanks to inflation, which will rage from here as all energy and commodity markets are scared to death of Davos’ financial war on Russia.

As Luke Gromen pointed out on Twitter this is the big signal that the petrodollar system is headed for the ashbin of history.

With the global oil market in a complete state of shock as no one wants to run afoul of US and/or EU sanctions on Russian energy, the price of oil here potentially goes parabolic. At that point reality hits the money masters squarely in the face.

Those that brave the waters will get their oil at a steep discount, those that don’t will pay through the nose, further accelerating the decline of those economies as inflation spirals out of control and the people put the blame, not on Putin, but on the people in charge.

Moreover, Russia has kept the gas flows going to ensure that money keeps flowing into the country to finance further expansion of its gold reserves.

The current shock will abate. Russia is not Iran. It can insure its own tanker fleet. It can deliver the oil. If Iran could survive what Trump did to them, Russia can thrive under this new regime, changing the entire flow of capital around the world.

Now, I want to turn your attention to the other news of which further corroborates that Davos and Europe are trapped. FOMC Chair Jerome Powell testified today telling the world that the Fed will still hike 25 basis points in March. Bullard came out and said the Fed has to withdraw accommodation to maintain its credibility.

Further Powell blamed both the Fed and Congress for inflation. It’s a result of too much spending.

Powell even floated the idea that the world can have more than one reserve currency (!!). Meanwhile Biden is talking about bringing back Build Back Better and sending us down the road to financial ruin.

The fight between Davos and the Fed, which I identified last summer is real, folks. That leaves a belligerent yet impotent Europe caught between the Scylla of a Fed drying up the global supply of dollars and the Carbides of a Russian military capable of withstanding anything Europe throws at them if the US doesn’t get involved, i.e. this doesn’t go nuclear.

NATO isn’t getting involved in Ukraine even if Ukraine becomes an EU member. They can have the landlocked rump of what’s left over. If Putin is smart, which he is, he will offer the Poles Lviv and Hungary Transcarpathia. The EU gets the dregs.

It’s clear from the wailing and gnashing of the Neocon/Neolibs that they want Putin Milosevic’d for daring to put them in this position. They still dream of overthrowing him. It’s also clear that there are a lot of people who are not down with the willful destruction of the current global economy within the upper reaches of US policy makers and European corporate boards.

This is the real fight for the future and if Davos thinks extreme demand destruction will be tolerated for any length of time over a regional conflict like Ukraine because it’s their ox being gored, then this war, while still raging is, in effect, already over.

end

Where we stand on day 8.  Russian forces lay siege to Ukrainian seaports.  2nd round of ceasefire talks begin

(zerohedge)

Russian Forces Lay Siege To Ukrainian Seaports As 2nd Round Of Ceasefire Talks Begin

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 08:41 AM

“En route to talks with Russian Federation. Already in helicopters. We will start in couple of hours,” Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak tweeted Thursday. The second round of talks between Russian and Ukraine delegations are set to begin around 9am ET. Russian officials yesterday acknowledged that the question of a ceasefire is on the table – however unlikely given the continued fierceness of the fighting, particularly in the south where overnight Russia captured its first major, strategic city, Kherson. Thursday marks the start of the second week of war, and the talks are being held at a neutral location on the Poland-Belarus border.

“Our delegation was in place last night. It was expecting Ukrainian negotiators last night, all night, then in the morning. They are still waiting,”  Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said. “But as you know, the talks have not started. Ukrainian negotiators are clearly in no hurry. Let’s hope they arrive today,” he quipped.

Kherson not only woke up Thursday morning to being under full Russian occupation, but to widespread looting and lack of food and medicines. Head of the Kherson Regional State Administration Hennadii Lahuta in an early Thursday statement confirmed Russian forces have “completely occupied” government buildings. 

Though impossible to verify at this early stage, there are widespread reports that at least 300 were killed as Russia fought to take the city. This as Fox reports that multiple southern port regions of Ukraine are getting continually battered: “Russian forces laid siege on two Ukrainian seaports and continued bombarding the nation’s two largest cities, Kharkiv and Kyiv, as Russia and Ukraine battle for the eighth day,” the report said.

We have not given up our responsibilities. The regional operational headquarters, which I lead, continues its work and addresses issues to help residents of the region. We are waiting for humanitarian aid,” Lahuta said.  

A raging fire after strikes, in Bucha near Kiev:

Even while Russia’s huge many-miles long convoy outside of Kiev appears to still be stalled, amid reports of logistical supply, fuel, and food issues – Russia’s advance in the south is ongoing, with the Pentagon late last night saying warships have been dispatched from Crimea and are now en route to Ukraine’s Black Sea port city of Odessa, where its navy is based. 

Mariupol in southern Ukraine is also under siege, with the city’s mayor citing an emerging “humanitarian catastrophe” in the city. Mayor Vadym Boichenko posted this message on Telegram:

“They are blocking the supply and repair of electricity, water and heat. They have also damaged the railways. They have destroyed bridges and smashed trains so that we can’t evacuate women, children and the elderly out of Mariupol.”

He said“They have also damaged the railways. They have destroyed bridges and smashed trains so that we can’t evacuate women, children and the elderly out of Mariupol.”

The city reported doesn’t have heat or electricity. The statement further accused Russia’s military of “blocking us like in former Leningrad [in the Second World War], deliberately destroying the city’s critical life-support infrastructure for seven days.

“We are working with international institutions to create a ‘green corridor’ for the humanitarian mission. We are working to ensure ceasefire to restore electricity,” said Boichenko. The mayor alleged an “extermination” and “genocide” is underway targeting all Ukrainians as well as other ethnicities in the city.

In the West, the intensity of the debate over what’s being called Western “inaction” is growing more intense, particularly after Joe Biden’s Tuesday night State of the Union address where he vowed that no US troops would enter Ukraine to fight the Russians.

end 

Temporary ceasefire!

Stocks Pop On “Temporary Ceasefire” Reports, Russia Reportedly Sees “Substantial Progress”

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 12:40 PM

Reuters reports that Ukrainian negotiators have said the two sides have reached an understanding on a joint provision allowing humanitarian corridors for evacuating civilians.

The same negotiator reportedly said that the agreement involved a temporary ceasefire during evacuations.

Russian negotiator was quotes as saying this is “substantial progress,” and Tass reports that a 3rd round of talks will take place in coming days.

The reaction was immediate as we suspect the algos only read the first few words of the headline…

We further suspect the algos are making a little too much of this – especially given Putin’s remarks just minutes before about “de-nazifying the nation.”

Putin again said Russia was rooting out “neo-Nazis”, adding during the televised opening of a national security council meeting that he “will never give up on (his) conviction that Russians and Ukrainians are one people.”

He earlier told French President Emmanuel Macron that Moscow “intends to continue the uncompromising fight against militants of nationalist armed groups”, according to a Kremlin account of their call.

We also note that the reaction is actually quite muted given the optimism in the comments.

So what happens when the evacuees have left? Does Nike and Apple start selling to Russia again?

Two widely disparate narratives as to what is going on inside the battlefield of Ukraine

(zerohedge)

Two Widely Disparate Battlefield Narratives Emerge In Ukraine’s South, Where Odessa Is “Bracing”

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 10:00 PM

Since Monday a consensus narrative on Russia’s offensive in Ukraine seems to have emerged – that Putin’s war has stalled, commanders are frustrated at the slow grind of advance, and that Ukraine’s military has slowed Russia’s pace a lot quicker than expected

Much of this might be true, but only a week since last Thursday’s rapid invasion from Ukraine’s north, east and south – and with the ‘fog of war’ making it hard for external observers or media correspondents to verify much of the information coming out literally minute by minute, all early narratives should be treated with healthy skepticism warranted in war-time. Add to this the obvious truth that in war, all sides are flooding the information space with propaganda.

A battlefield situation report issued by Bloomberg suggests that precisely the above elements are at play, heavily affecting Western mainstream narratives of what’s at best murky and still in development. Starting on Wednesday, it became clear that the southern Ukrainian city of Kherson was under direct threat. Initial reports in Reuters, Bloomberg and others focused on video evidence suggesting that a major Russian assault had been repulsed

A video posted by an adviser to Ukraine’s interior minister on social media on Wednesday showed a person in civilian clothes approaching a tank and then lifting Ukrainian flags from it and waving them in the air shouting “Glory to Ukraine!”.

The advisor, Anton Gerashchenko, said the video showed civilians in the southern city of Kherson taking away flags from Russian invaders set up in the heart of the city. Moscow said on Wednesday it had seized Kherson, the biggest win yet in its week-long invasion if its neighbor.

Reuters noted that it wasn’t able to independently verify the video. But by day’s end Bloomberg began to come close to admitting the narrative was not quite what many major outlets were saying, further with an admission that Russia’s battlefield onslaught is progressing better than is being widely reported:

Russia’s claim to have captured the port city of Kherson in southern Ukraine makes increasingly clear that its invasion, while slowed in the north, is gaining traction in the country’s open and hard-to-defend coastal plains.

Along with Russia’s shift to more aggressive artillery and aerial attacks on urban centers, it is leading to a tempering of optimism over Ukraine’s ability to sustain its so far effective organized resistance against a vastly superior force. 

And now Ukraine’s strategic Black Sea port city of Odessa is said to be “bracing” amid the Russian advance in the south, which appears gaining in momentum.

Into the late night hours, Ukraine’s government was still denying that Kherson had fallen

“According to the info from our brigade the battles are going on now,” a spokesperson for the ministry said. “The city is not captured totally, some parts are under our control.”

Simultaneously, Russian state media is within the last hours reporting that its forces have taken “full control” of the city – which would make it the most important large city to have fallen thus far. But just after 4am Kiev time, the AFP reported that Ukrainian government officials are now conceding that Kherson has fallen under Russian control.

Further, in its prior report, Bloomberg cited a military analyst to add the following key observation:

“We are now in for the long haul and Russia is reorganizing itself to ensure that it wins this war,” according to Keir Giles, senior consulting fellow for the Russia and Eurasia program at Chatham House, who spoke on a webinar. “So the implications of the Russian way of war is that we need to prepare now for humanitarian catastrophe.”

For another example of a central fact that is currently in hot dispute – Ukraine said Wednesday that Russia has lost a whopping 5,000 troops after the first week of fighting.

This even contradicts the Pentagon’s own estimate which has been given at between 1,500 and 2,000.  As for Russia’s Defense Ministry itself (MoD), it said Wednesday that it lost 498 troops – and additionally 1,597 wounded. 

Between the Ukrainian and Russian government conflicting claims lies a gap of 4,500 KIA – which again underscores that in the fog and propaganda of war, truth is the first casualty – and it’ll take time before some of these contested facts are settled. 

As one online commenter underscored… “Repeating again: absolutely no claims of soldiers killed on either side can be believed at this stage. Claims of huge enemy losses and minimal losses of one’s own forces are a standard part of the propaganda of war. Likewise with civilian deaths.”

end

Rich Russians are scrambling to buy luxury goods as the rouble plunges. Burberry is the next company to pause all shipments

(zerohedge)

Rich Russians Scramble To Buy Luxury Goods As Ruble Plunges; Burberry ‘Pauses’ All Shipments

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 07:20 PM

Wealthy Russians are scrambling to buy luxury goods  to preserve their wealth, as worldwide sanctions in response to the invasion of Ukraine has sent the Ruble plunging in recent days.

According to Bulgari SpA CEO Jean-Christophe Babin, sales in Russian stores has risen in the last few days after international financial sanctions sharply restricted the movement of cash, Bloomberg reports.

“In the short term it has probably boosted the business,” he said in an interview with the outlet, describing the company’s jewelry as a “safe investment.”

“How long it will last it is difficult to say, because indeed with the SWIFT measures, fully implemented, it might make it difficult if not impossible to export to Russia,” Babin added, referring to Russia’s ouster from the SWIFT financial-messaging system.

And while many consumer brands ranging from Apple to Nike, and several energy giants such as BP, Shell and Exxon have announced a pullout from Russia, luxury brands have thus far attempted to continue operating in the country with the exception of Burberry – which has now ‘paused’ all shipments to Russia.

Bulgari, owned by LVMH SE, is far from alone. Richemont’s Cartier is still selling jewelery and watches, Swatch Group’s Omega timepieces are still available, as are Rolexes. All are continuing to make sales and trying to strike an apolitical stance. -Bloomberg

We are there for the Russian people and not for the political world,” said Babin. “We operate in many different countries that have periods of uncertainty and tensions.”

Burberry, on the other hand, will no longer ship to Russia ‘until further notice,’ according to Bloomberg, citing “operational challenges” amid the Ukraine situation.

“This is a fast-moving situation and we continue to monitor developments closely,” a spokesman told the outlet, adding that the company is focused on supporting “our people and partners” in Ukraine and Russia, and has donated to the British Red Cross Ukraine appeal. “These are incredibly difficult times for many people and our thoughts are with all those impacted by the crisis.”

Luxury watches and jewelry can hold and even appreciate in value amid economic turmoil – yet allowing wealthy Russians a financial life-raft has created a ‘potential public relations issue’ according to the report.

“It is true that luxury brands could decide not to serve the Russian market. Rationally, this would be a cost to them, possibly outweighed by the positive communication image they get in other markets,” said Bernstein analyst Luca Solca.

Sales in Russia and to Russians abroad account for less than 2% of overall revenue at LVMH and Swatch Group and less than 3% at Richemont, a “relatively immaterial” level, according to a report this week by Edouard Aubin and fellow analysts at Morgan Stanley.

That’s due, in part, to Russian income and wealth disparities, with a small number of billionaire oligarchs living way beyond the means of ordinary people. The average monthly wage in Moscow is about 113,000 rubles ($1,350 at pre-invasion exchange rates), and much lower in rural regions. -Bloomberg

Meanwhile, Europe’s financial war with wealthy Russians has escalated – as Switzerland has become the latest player to break with their historic neutrality and enforce EU sanctions in an attempt to pressure oligarchs to lean on President Vladimir Putin to end the invasion of Ukraine.

Switzerland, home to 8.6 million people, has long been a favorite destination for wealthy Russians thanks to its discretion and ‘light-touch’ regulation, according to Bloomberg.

The Basel-based Bank for International Settlements (BIS) shows Russian residents and companies held a combined $11 billion in Swiss banks – which is more than double the roughly $5 billion held in UK institutions. That figure does not include brokerage accounts, investments or assets held through offshore companies. Private bankers have estimated that rich Russians hold in excess of $100 billion across the country’s lenders. One person put the figure at $300 billion – equal to nearly 40% of the Swiss economy.

Over the last two years, deposits in Swiss institutions by Russians increased significantly after falling between 2013 and 2018.

Now, some of those assets will be subject to freezes if they’re linked to any of the hundreds of Russian officials and entities, including Putin, put under EU sanctions.

According to the report, the Swiss government will implement the EU sanctions with ‘immediate effect,’ after spending the weekend taking flack from opposition politicians and editorials in leading Swiss papers, as well as from other governments, to join the sanctions.

The EU sanctions include six of Russia’s wealthiest oligarchs; Alexey Mordashov, Mikhail Fridman, Petr Aven, Alisher Usmanov, Gennady Timchenko and Alexander Ponomarenko.

END

Both Fitch and Moody cut’s Russia’s sovereign rating to junk

(Ozimek/EpochTimes)

Fitch, Moody’s Cut Russia’s Sovereign Rating To “Junk”, Ruble Dives To Record Low

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 11:20 AM

Authored by Tom Ozimek via The Epoch Times,

Rating agencies Fitch and Moody’s have downgraded Russia’s sovereign rating to junk status as a consequence of tough Western sanctions over the Kremlin-ordered invasion of Ukraine, sending the rouble plunging to a record low.

Fitch downgraded Russia to “B” from “BBB” and put the country’s ratings on “rating watch negative.” Moody’s cut Russia’s rating by six notches, to B3 from Baa3. With the move, the two rating agencies followed in the footsteps of S&P, which last week similarly slashed Russia’s rating to junk.

Russian bonds were already trading at low recovery values…

Turbulence has roiled Russia’s financial markets as a result of harsh sanctions imposed over the attack on Ukraine, which on Thursday entered its eighth day as Ukrainian forces continued their resistance against the invading forces.

Russia’s advance on Kyiv appeared stalled on Thursday and, despite heavy Russian shelling, Ukrainian forces still held Kharkiv and several other cities under attack, according to British military intelligence.

More than a million people have fled Ukraine since Russia’s President Vladimir Putin ordered his forces to launch the multi-pronged assault.

A Polish border guard assists refugees from Ukraine as they arrive to Poland at the Korczowa border crossing, Poland, on Feb. 26, 2022. (Czarek Sokolowski/AP Photo)

The invasion of Ukraine was denounced by the United Nations in a historic vote, while global brands exited Russia and its currency sank.

The rouble was more than 10 percent weaker against the dollar at 117.5 on the Moscow Exchange at 8:30 a.m. GMT, marking the first time the Russian currency has traded above 110 to the dollar in Moscow.

A top executive at index provider MSCI earlier this week called Russia’s stock market “uninvestable,” with MSCI and FTSE Russell both announcing on Wednesday that they would cut Russian equities from all their indexes.

Echoing that view was Peter Harrison, chief executive of British money manager Schroders, who on Thursday told Reuters that Russian stocks and bonds are now “in the realms of utterly uninvestable.”

In announcing its downgrade, Fitch said it expects U.S. and EU sanctions to have a much larger impact on Russia’s credit fundamentals than any previous sanctions in history.

“The severity of international sanctions in response to Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine has heightened macro-financial stability risks, represents a huge shock to Russia’s credit fundamentals, and could undermine its willingness to service government debt,” Fitch said in a statement.

Moody’s said the scope and severity of the sanctions have exceeded their expectations and have material implications for credit.

“Severe and coordinated sanctions imposed on Russia together with its retaliatory response in recent days have materially impaired its ability to execute cross-border transactions, including for sovereign debt payments,” Moody’s said in a statement.

“Russia’s prohibition on transfers of foreign currency outside of the country in response to the sanctions, which appears at this stage not to apply to repayments of legacy debt, undermines Russia’s track record of willingness to service its debt and leaves debt servicing flows highly vulnerable to further intervention,” it added.

Russia has responded to the sanctions with a raft of measures, including more than doubling its key interest rate to 20 percent, prohibiting Russian brokers from selling securities held by foreigners, and ordering Russian exporters to sell a large portion of their hard-currency revenues to bolster the beleaguered rouble.

end

TURKEY/INFLATION

Turkey Reports 54% Inflation One Month After Erdogan Fired His Statistics Chief

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 12:20 PM

One month after Turkey’s president Erdogan fired his statistics chief for reporting that inflation hit 36%, his current replacement must be dreading every incoming phone call after earlier today Turkey reported that annual inflation again soared more than expected, hitting a two-decade high of 54.4% in February, above the 52.5% consensus, fuelled by a crash in the lira last year and soaring commodity prices that are expected to climb even higher in coming months due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Month-on-month, consumer prices rose 4.8% in February, the Turkish Statistical Institute said on Thursday, compared to the median consensus forecast of 3.8%.

Core inflation increased from 39.5%yoy in January to 44.1%yoy in February, also above consensus expectation of 42.2%yoy.

Meanwhile, for the first time since the mid-1990s, Turkey’s producer prices doubled in the past year, surging 105% Y/Y, and up 7.22% just in February, also reflecting the rise in commodity prices amid Russia-Ukraine tensions.

The rise in inflation was broad-based with all categories registering increases, though the rises in food and transport categories made the largest contributions. There was some moderation in sequential inflation compared with December and January, as the sharp Lira sell-off in 2021Q4 led to a more front-loaded and faster pass-through to prices in these two months. Nevertheless, the underlying pricing pressures remain elevated.

Last month’s inflation was driven by food and non-alcoholic drink prices, which rose 8.41% month-on-month, while furniture prices rose 7.00%, further eroding household savings (we somehow doubt that alcoholic drinks fell in price).  Annually, transportation prices surged 76%, while furniture prices rose 65%. 

Inflation has soared in Turkey as the central bank, under pressure from Erdogan, has cut interest rates by 500 basis points last year. It is expected to rise further, exacerbated by a surge in gas, oil and grains prices set off by the Ukraine conflict. The bizarro easing cycle prompted by “Erdoganomics” led to a currency crisis that saw the lira crash 44% against the dollar last year, raising inflation via imports priced in hard currencies. Meanwhile, economists say rate hikes are off the cards, despite deeply negative real yields, given Erdogan’s aversion of high rates. They expect authorities to respond through interventions in the forex market to keep the lira stable, and fiscal measures.

Inflation will stay close to February levels until the last months of the year, said Jason Tuvey, senior EM economist at Capital Economics, Reuters reported. “The spillover effects from the Russia-Ukraine crisis, including higher global commodity prices and potentially fresh supply chain disruptions, mean that the risks are skewed to the upside,” he said in a note.

After hiking prices across the board at the start of the year, the government has implemented tax cuts on basic goods and – like its European peers – is subsidizing a significant amount of electricity bills, in an effort to soften the impact on households. The central bank said in January it expects inflation to peak around May, when it is seen rising to around 55%, but it can now throw that particular forecast in the trash as Russia’s invasion has assured even higher inflation for a long time to come.

A Turkish official said upward risks on inflation were growing and energy prices would continue to put pressure on prices. “There is a picture before us that is straining the balance of the economy. Adding in the Fed’s future decision, it is clear that it will be a difficult period,” the official said.

The lira – which has been actively micromanaged by the government ever since its imploded to an all time low last December, forcing the central bank to spend billions defending the currency – weakened beyond 14.0 to the dollar and further depreciation risks adding more pressure on prices.

While the central bank expects inflation to fall to 23.2% by the end of the year, economists’ expectations are much higher, with the median estimate at 38% in a recent Reuters poll. In a note, Goldman strategist Murat Unur wrote that going forward he expects inflation to rise further, exceed 60% in April, peak around 65% in May-June and only fall to 45%yoy by the end of the year. Goldman also sees upside risks from commodity prices and the monetary policy stance which is not geared to fighting inflation.

RUSSIA//UKRAINE/USA/EU

a good accounting of what is happening inside Ukraine and parallel to what Luongo is stating

(courtesy Robert H)

what happened over the last 7 days

Inbox

Robert Hryniak6:39 PM (4 hours ago)
to
  • The Russian attack began, mostly by strikes with standoff weapons.  24 hour hours later the Ukie air force and navy ceased to exist.  In this initial phase, few Ukrainian units were directly engaged.
  • The bulk of the Nazi forces is in Donbass and it took the LDNR forces several days to break through the Nazi defenses, but eventually they did it in two directions.  At the same time, while the heavy fighting between the Nazi forces in the Donbass and the LDNR forces were taking place….. the Russians launched a two pronged offensive from the north and south to envelop the Nazi force concentrations.  Interestingly, in spite of the fact that the two Russian forces have not reached each other and in spite of the existing no man’s land between them, the Ukronazis are not making any serious efforts to break through since they must realize that the entire area between the two Russian forces is a big “free fire zone” for Russian artillery, aircraft and attack helicopters.  For all practical purposes the entire Nazi concentration in the Donbass is now locked into an operational cauldron.
  • The same is true for the Nazi forces in Mariupol.  For them, it’s show over.
  • There is a large Nazi force left in only one location: Odessa.  It appears that the Russians want to encircle it and then take a final decision on how to deal with this city. Given that Odessa is effectively cut off from the ground and sea, it is only a matter of time before the city is taken 
  • Kiev is a total mess, the Russians have not even try to enter the city yet, but the crazy rumors of armed former jailed prisoners on a raping, killing rampage  combined with terrified Ukronazis will make this city one awful mess thank you Zelensky….. the Russians will likely stay as they are, block the city on all sides, keep open a humanitarian corridor and wait until the time is right.
  • On the informational war, the West gave Russia a thorough thrashing: RT and Sputnik are banned everywhere,  I know for fact that some US colleges have banned their computers from accessing any .ru or .su websites –  yes entire domain names are being shut down – Russian diplomats get assaulted… Russian citizens even in America are denied flights as air space is closed leaving them stranded looking for alternative flight routes home. 
  • The western PSYOP onslaught is so powerful that even some people in Russia are fearful and sincerely worry “what will happen to us next?!”… kind of the same thing that occurred with Covid and attacks on the unvaccinated 
  • Western IT companies are disconnecting, throttling, while “private” western hackers are unleashing DDoS attack on pretty much all the main Russian websites, not only informational ones, but also those who are used to run the civilian infrastructure of Russia.  Here, again, the West so far is winning, but a huge margin.
  • The western society is displaying its hatred of all things Russian in every way it can: hundereds and maybe thousands of students are summarily expelled from western colleges (which used to be bastions of freedom).  In a Swiss city the child was beaten up in school for being an “evil Russian”.  Artists are expelled, others pressured to condemn their own country and president, western presstitutes and politicians unceasingly vomit at Russia, Russians and everything Russian! And i expect the dial tone will be turned up in coming weeks. As blame Russians for everything will be the banter .. gas prices tonight for Super will be $2/ liter or call $8 a gallon going higher. 
  • Food prices will soar as everyone takes advantage of Black Sea port stoppages and yes Blame Russians. Especially as interest rates do nothing. 
  • China is bidding its’ timing in Asia carefully studying everything that is occurring

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^Ukrainian military week 1 

  • Air Force: gone
  • Navy: gone
  • Long range, standoff capabilities: gone
  • Air defenses: gone
  • Regular ground forces: no less than 65% of the military is surrounded and condemned to surrender or die 
  • Assorted Nazi units: A LOT of them are now either in the Donbass cauldron or in Mariupol.  They will mostly not be taken prisoner, except for the leaders who will be tried and sentenced for their innumerable crimes.

Russian goals, after week 1  

  • Ukrainian disarmament: mostly already done, the Ukraine has nothing left to threaten Russia with
  • Ukrainian denazification: only at the early start, but conditions are such that most of the hardcore Nazis will soon be dead… Europeans do not want them and the US does not want them .. those remaining will fee and take in surrounding nations in those nations 
  • Erik Prince of Blackwater fame is trying to get US funding for a insurgency in Russia much like was done in Afghanistan, sadly people are listening 

The West gave Russia a bloody nose by forcing her intervention, thereby crushing any chance for the EU to find hegemony relief in the next decade or more, from American and British hegemony. While Germany  is a country headed for real disaster and will lose it’s economic power in Europe over the next 5 years to become one of many and not the Economic leader it was… 

The West gave Russia an even bloodier nose by very effectively controlling the narrative.

But what’s next? 

Please remember that this is NOT about the Ukraine, this is about the entire future security architecture of Europe seen through Russian eyes. And where there is less trust of the West than there was before.  When diplomats lose their diplomatic ability to travel, we have entered a new level of distrust resulting in less dialogue, not more. Doors will close to cooperation and even in Russia those Atlantists will reinvent themselves to distance from western orientation. 

Russia I believe some time ago made the decision to turn Eastward and will now effectively turn its’ back on Europe. Western dreams of Eurasian involvement likely have disappeared. Division lines of trade and commerce should start to be quite clear and nations will pick camps to the exclusion of others. Dollar hegemony will take a huge hit as will most western countries  in altered Capital Flows as countries and individuals reassess safe investment zones. Never before in modern history since WWII has  a people  of a  nation been vilified as intently as Russians are now. It maybe a lead up to war both economic and kinetic, some of which will develop at different paces over time. 

NO, Russia won’t invade the EU or even Poland, the Russian war to push back NATO has only begun, it will last MANY MONTHS so be prepared for this.  MONTHS! Russia is only starting to push back, like they did with closing their air space today and effectively raising air cargo pricing by at least 20%. We should expect to hear and learn much more in coming days. 

end

This morning….

Putin tells Macron Russia will achieve its goals in Ukraine | Reuters

Inbox

Robert Hryniak3:12 PM (7 minutes ago)
to

Putin was quite clear to Macron that Russia will finish what it started and will not be deterred. So yes, this will not be over in days or weeks but likely months. It is apparent that Russia is determined to accomplish its’ 3 objectives across the entire Ukraine before departing. Assuming they really do that. And that is more likely than not as the longer term impact to its’ sphere of influence will be affected by them not doing what they say.

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/putin-tells-macron-russia-will-achieve-its-goals-ukraine-2022-03-03/

The Cold War continues with the West and vice versa. While on the ground Azov troops are being heavily engaged in and around Mariupol and Odessa. Mariupol is experiencing power outages and the like. And like in all conflicts all sides experience casualties including civilian ones. Thank god their approach is not typical carpet bombing like we have seen in Iraq and elsewhere.

The danger as with all conflicts is that this goes HOT and becomes a kinetic exchange between NATO and Russia. Behind the curtain there are certain elements that are pushing harder by the day for this to occur. And it should be expected as of today, the drums for a HOT war will beat ever louder, since all foreign hegemony assets placed or under construction in the Ukraine have been destroyed. A NATO incursion into the Ukraine on whatever the justification will mean a complete severing of ties with Europe by Russia.  Think gas and oil and food! The most dangerous period will be March 14th to April 4th as an incursion window. And it is likely all things Russian will experience a further drop in value and creditability in the West as the noise is turned up to a war frenzy. Historically such action is a precursor to war by preparing the public to hate a given people. Think Korea, Vietnam, Iraq etc. as what is true and fact is lost in the sound of the drums of war.  Whether we appreciate it or not, between Ukraine and Russia they account for at least 30% of wheat supply to the world and there is no reason to think that previous supply chain flows will follow history. It is more likely than not, they will not. Even supplies for chip manufacturing will start to run dry come late  April assuming unrestricted cargo, which is impaired at this time and will be so for some time. One questions whether assets in Ukraine by the likes of Cargill etc. will not be sanctioned under current rules. There are many variables to smooth supply chain activity and right now they are all up in the air, including physical transport. Already insurance rates for shipping have gone enormously while some carriers like Maersk will not dock at Russian ports. While much of outbound shipments occur on Russian vessels the lack of 3rd party carriers will restrict cargo movements in a huge way. Chinese carriers will fill in some of the void but there will be disruptions. And Russia’s response the other day to denial of access to its’ airlines denied 36 airlines flights over Russia adding at least 20% to air cargo cost.

Perhaps one issue not well considered in global impact with all the sanctions is the reality of unrestricted shipping from the both Ukraine and Russia from the area of the Black  Sea. This will become apparent within several weeks and it will not be positive.

While having relatives in the Ukraine who simply wish to gain a better life which has been lacking for decades due to corruption, not every Ukrainian agrees with Zelensky and his growing daily madness or his brand of nationalism. Ukrainians and Russians living in the Ukraine have lived together for many decades without fighting and now are being instructed to hate and kill the other. Complete craziness on display by crooks and puppets acting for other masters. Whether through all this and what is still to come a more sane political and civil administration can be accomplished, remains to be seen. But, where there is hope and opportunity there is a chance. And Ukrainians deserve a future chance to be free to decide their own fate. So, if Russia means what it says, perhaps when they leave such a thing is possible. Perhaps, under new leadership, Ukraine can declare itself a neutral country and be a bridge between east and west, with no foreign mastery. This of course would piss everyone off but so be it, and more power to them if they pull it off. It would help to have registered boundaries, but that is another story. Because without that the Ukraine technically is still part of Russia. Why, they did not do this is a mystery. And it may never be possible, as it is doubtful that surrounding countries will all recognize this, as the world turns.

But the reality is Ukraine and its’ citizens are of fleeting concern and a distraction, despite all the outcry daily, as this is not a battle between Ukraine and Russia. The key to understanding this is that Europe, Britain and America are say 20% of global population and less than 50% of the GDP globally seeking to extend hegemony. A natural event that has happened throughout history. So it occurring now should not be a surprise to anyone. And no, contrary to Zelensky saying the world is with the Ukraine; this a another falsehood. Not all countries support the sanctions as has been said. Although sanctions on oligarchs who more than likely have ill gotten gains is not a bad idea to clean up some ledgers. All participant countries of the Eurasian economic union that are part of the CSTO did not support sanctions, instead they supported Russia. And even Moldova and Georgia did not support the Ukraine in sanctions against Russia. And one should know that Moldovia has a pro Europe government. Even in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia was against sanctions and stated they would strictly adhere to the policies of the OPEC – plus. Iran clearly is behind Russia as is China and even Egypt, and Turkey. Even Israel’s position looks very ambivalent. Finally a lack of support for sanctions is very visible in Latin and South America were Brazil, Argentina, and yesterday Mexico all stated in unison that they would not support sanctions. Often in such times, divisions of blocks of interest become apparent and it is so now. Who supports who, is very clear and no doubt will be clearer in coming weeks and months. One of the biggest dangers from all of this is that at least a decade of possible cohesive constructive dialogue and relationships will be lost between all parties. This is time where a such a lack of relationships will polarize societies and trade ties affecting not just capital flows but investment, with lasting impact. No doubt, whatever now happens, China will use this effectively to paint its’ way as the alternative to western hegemony.

Time will tell the tale, however it is clear the world is and has changed and will continue to be altered by events coming not long from now.

end

Real scope of what has been done this week

Inbox

Robert Hryniak6:49 PM (4 hours ago)
to

the area of operations is roughly the size of one third of Ukraine’s territory which is 603,000 sq. km / 3=201, 000 sq.km, which is very roughly the size of the United Kingdom.

It is impossible for a quick end with civilians being used as shields without a bloodbath. Russia will go slow and take the losses city by city, block by block. 

But is clear what the conclusion will be with the bulk of troops in Reserve if NATO tries to move in 

end

please view below:

Time to take a step back and assess what is true

Inbox

Robert Hryniak9:15 AM (14 minutes ago)
to

Truly amazing how the Covid narrative faded away in 48 hours. When hostilities break out the first thing to disappear is the truth.

6// GLOBAL COVID ISSUES/VACCINE MANDATE ISSUES/

GLOBAL VACCINE MANDATES

The march of insanity for control

Inbox

Robert Hryniak10:02 AM (1 minute ago)
to

Our daily distraction is the so called war in the  Ukraine and we are bombarded with all kind of narrative, some true and some not. Unless one searches it seems Covid stories have completely disappeared. However, underneath the noise, movements for control continue. The World Health Organization (WHO) has signed a deal with T-Systems (a Deutsche Telecom subsidiary) for the production of a global QR system to produce an international vaccine passport. The company noted has already implemented vaccine QR codes for over 60 countries, despite the intense resistance by the people. T-Systems is also responsible for implementing the European Federation Gateway Service (EFGS), and Germany’s COVID warning app, which has been downloaded over 43 million times.

This will provide governments with a tool to track and control your movements both domestically and internationally. Even if you have received the COVID shots and booster, you are only one new vaccine away from becoming part of “the unvaccinated” population; you will be banished into the shadows of society. France recently repealed four million vaccine passports.  Do you not think those folks just lost freedom ? Countries such as Israel and Australia are calling for four or five vaccines. If the people do not push back, the government will have us on a tight leash controlling every aspect of life. It’s called communism and it destroys lives and countries. One only needs to look to history to know. 

It is not hard to envision the control over life that is coming, and with it the meaning of being free will change. The other day just before the state of the Union speech Biden rescinded the mask mandate. And yet just hours before you would get Covid if you did not have a mask on, and be fined. The entire narrative was balderdash and never about health but about control. Do not think there is a reason why states like Florida and Texas are enjoying unprecedented population growth? Why did we see all manner of politicians from hard nosed covid rule states like New York go to Florida to vacation? When i speak to friends and associates there it is like they live in another world where people accept they may get Covid and get over it and live life, free of meaningless mandates. People are now resisting to the point where they will drive for hours as opposed to wearing masks, on planes. At least now for a time the need for masks is gone. 

We should be quite aware that the agenda of this globalist crowd continues and if not stopped we will all lose freedom, of be forced to move elsewhere. As it quite clear that mass media today has become a tool of propaganda for governments to attempt to convince the public of desired narrative belief. Even social media has become a tool of misinformation. Sadly, unchecked and not resisted this push will ultimately break the West and global power will shift east to ASIA. 

END

GLOBAL ISSUES//FREIGHT

Supply chains will be affected terribly because of the invasion.  Here is what to expect:

(Fuller/FreightWaves)

The Second Cold War Is Here, And Supply Chains Will Be The Front Lines

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 06:30 AM

By Craig Fuller, of FreightWaves

We are witnessing the remaking of the world order in front of our eyes — and this will impact global supply chains in unforeseen ways. 

We are about to experience the most dramatic and unpredictable supply chain map we’ve experienced since World War II.

If the Russia-Ukraine conflict’s international ramifications keep spreading, we face a real possibility of a bifurcating global economy, in which geopolitical alliances, energy and food flows, currency systems, and trade lanes could split.

During the first Cold War, the world was anything but flat. There were two worlds — the East and the West. That world is being recreated as we speak, and with it, Western companies will start to shift sourcing away from the East and more toward Western and neutral states. North American economic integration will become a new priority. Surface transportation across the Eurasian continent will become more complex, and possibly contested.

Entire supply chains will be rewritten, with new sources and partners — all in the interest of corporate and national security. This will create massive volatility and unpredictability.

Companies will prioritize vendors that can provide consistent and dependable supplies, likely paying a premium. In the end, those costs will be passed on to consumers in the form of higher prices.

While prices will become an important consideration for consumers, brands that offer a consistently and predictably available set of choices will enjoy pricing power. 

The future market winners will be the corporations that make the investments in supply chain infrastructure and reliable, Western-friendly production locations. 

Supply chain analyst roles will become the hottest jobs of the next decade, prized by corporations, consulting and even Wall Street for the ability to interpret, analyze and predict disruptions and risks in a new world order. Those same analysts will find themselves recruited heavily by national security, intelligence and defense organizations — as future conflicts will largely rise out of a desire to control materials and production. 

New investments in supply chain technologies and automation will be accelerated, as will preference for near-shoring and domestic sourcing.

Historical data models, based on following freight market trends, will become less relevant in the future. Companies with dynamic supply chains will require fresh data and forecasting that is constantly updated as new information and datasets become available.

The Ukraine crisis is perhaps the end of the preamble to a long history of geopolitical, economic and military conflict between the East and West in the second Cold War. Now the plot is thickening. State actors like Russia and China are choosing regional hegemony over global integration — we will see this play out further in the Baltics and the South China Sea, not to mention the Middle East and the greater Pacific.

World Trade Organization-led globalization took decades but accelerated when China entered in 2000. Global decoupling — if it comes to that —and tighter regional socioeconomic integration will also take decades, and the pace of change will vary, sometimes fast and sometimes imperceptibly

END

Ukrainians laid some mines off Odessa and an DEstonian Cargo vessel struck one and sank

Shipping will become quite dangerous around this neck of the woods

(zerohedge)

Estonian Cargo Vessel Sinks, Crew Missing, After Striking Sea Mine Off Odessa

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 09:40 AM

At a moment Russian forces are continuing to lay siege to Ukrainian port cities in the south, an Estonian cargo ship has reportedly hit a sea mine and sunk off the coast of Odessa, according to Reuters. 

“The Helt is believed to have hit a mine and four crew members are still missing,” The Daily Mailwrites of what’s known of the early details. “Two others are in a life raft at sea after the blast near Odessa according to Igor Ilves, managing director of Tallinn-based manager Vista Shipping Agency.”

Ives was cited in UK reports as saying, “The vessel has finally sunk.” He added that “Two of the crew are in a raft on the water and four others are missing. I don’t know where they are at the moment.”

The sinking was caused by explosion, again which is now being widely reported as due to the ship hitting a mine. Likely Ukraine’s navy has been deploying mines off its key defensive ports amid the Russian invasion which has come by air, land, and sea. 

Russia’s advance in the south is ongoing, with the Pentagon late last night saying warships have been dispatched from Crimea and are now en route to Ukraine’s Black Sea port city of Odessa, where its navy is based. 

Some regional sources are alleging Russian naval forces were using the civilian cargo ship as a “shield” before it sank – though this can’t be confirmed…

The waters off Ukraine’s coast have become increasingly dangerous, also coming days after Turkey shut the Bosporus and Dardanelles Straits to all warship traffic in line with the Montreux Convention.

Overnight, Ukrainian officials confirmed the city of Kherson is now under full Russian control. With a population of nearly 300,000 and occupying a strategic locations, it’s considered the gateway to the crucial Odessa port – home to most Ukrainian naval assets.

VACCINE INJURIES

SPECIAL THANKS TO MILAN S FOR PROVIDING THESE IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS TO US;

CDC Scientists Admit They Did Manipulate Study Data To Show the C0V-19 Vaxxines Are Safe for Pregnant Women As Researchers Discover 91% of Pregnancies Resulted in Miscarriage Following C0V-19 Vaxxination – USA Tomorrow

Inbox

Milan Sabioncello7:00 PM (3 hours ago)
to me

CDC Scientists Admit They Did Manipulate Study Data To Show the C0V-19 Vaxxines Are Safe for Pregnant Women As Researchers Discover 91% of Pregnancies Resulted in Miscarriage Following C0V-19 Vaxxination – USA Tomorrow

END

Pfizer document

Inbox

Milan Sabioncello7:44 AM (9 minutes ago)
to me

It starts listing adverse effects from page 30

Vaccine Impact/

Just Released Documents by Pfizer Show BioNTech Paid FDA $2,875,842.00 “Drug User Fee” for COVID-19 Vaccine ApprovalMarch 2, 2022 4:36 pmAs the news cycle continues to focus on the Ukraine situation, the FDA complied with a court order to begin releasing 55,000 pages of Pfizer data per month that was used to authorize their COVID-19 vaccine produced with BioNTech, with the first batch quietly released yesterday, March 1st. There are 150 documents that the public can now download. One of the documents released was the “Prescription Drug User Fee Payment” that BioNTech paid to the FDA on 4/20/2021 for the “COMIRNATY COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine” which the FDA subsequently approved in August of 2021. That “Prescription Drug User Fee Payment” was $2,875,842.00. The members of the “External Data Monitoring Committee” that apparently were chosen by Pfizer, monitored by Pfizer, and investigated by Pfizer to make sure they were doing their job and that there were no “conflicts of interest” were also revealed in these documents.Read More…


Michael Every

on the major topics of the day

Michael Every…

Rabobank: You Can’t Trade Geopolitics

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 10:40 AM

By Michael Every of Rabobank

*You* can’t trade geopolitics

We aren’t in WW3 yet – despite worries Russia, not bad weather, just took down a Romanian military helicopter and jet – but this crisis is answering a question I have long pondered: how would our 24/7 clickbait, read-no-history, central-bank-liquidity-addled, algo-driven markets have traded WW2? The answer: stupidly. Every other day for six years they would have wondered if it was over yet. While the Battle of Stalingrad raged, they would ponder waterfront condos in the city centre. On D-Day they would have turned the TVs off and gone back to their desks, exactly like the traders I worked with at another bank did in 2003’s Iraq War after the statue of Saddam Hussein fell. “No more to see here.” “What about insurgency, terrorism, Iran, and regional chaos?” “Shut up and buy assets.” Of course, in WW2 markets were largely closed and stockbrokers had to fight too, as in Ukraine now, which changes one’s view of how to trade life.

In a war where one side is led by a former comedian, our less reality-based traders and analysts are inadvertently the funny ones. How about Moody’s saying Russia’s refusal to allow payments on new FX debts was “a credit risk”(!) and that this decision suggested “a lack of checks and balances” in the Kremlin(!) And how about the attempt to rally on news Russia will talk to Ukraine? Because the Kremlin has never lied: it didn’t claim it would never invade Ukraine; it didn’t just claim it was *Ukraine* which bombed Kharkhiv’s Freedom Square yesterday.

Here’s a clue for analysts: don’t read what leaders or foreign ministers or ambassadors say abroad in English summarised in Bloomberg bulletsRead what they say at home in their own language. And *read who their leaders read* because that tells you what they are thinking. Last year I told people to read Marx vis-à-vis Common Prosperity; to predict this war one should have read Dugin or Ilyin, a fascist so favoured by Putin that he was personally involved in having his body reburied in Russia and his grave reconsecrated. If you can’t read in the original or are pressed for time, let others do it for you. @y_akopov summarised Russian nationalist intellectual thinking on Twitter yesterday thus:

The war is expected to be over in days, or weeks at most.  The main bulk of Ukrainian forces in the East is going to be encircled soon, and the main cities are already under siege. The losses are admitted to be “higher than expected”, but it changes nothing. The possibility of resistance after the active phase of war is dismissed, they are confident that after there is a change of power and Ukrainian activists are purged by military police, most people in Ukraine will come to their senses and accept the new reality.

The war is existential in a way that it is supposed to destroy the Ukrainian identity. The desired outcome seems to be not friendly Ukraine with a new government, but at least partial annexation with Ukrainian culture suppressed. There is no talk of a nuclear or further wars yet in these circles. This so far can only be found (albeit quite easily) in ‘normie’ accounts. Europe arming Ukraine is seen like a futile exercise (too little too late) rather than casus belli.

Sanctions. They are widely considered to be survivable thanks to preparations made since 2014, and the most severe ones are expected to be lifted soon after when Ukraine is defeated. Russian billionaires forced to move to Russia with their money is considered to be great. Autarky is believed to be good. The focus is mostly on tech with explanations how Yandex can provide everything Russia needs. Imports from China are expected to cover all reasonable needs in goods, and domestic manufacturing is expected to boom. Overall, complete dehumanisation of Ukraine, dismissal rather than aggressive challenging of the West (yesterday’s hegemon) and the start of a Russian golden era.

Does any of this sound like a regime about to enter into productive peace talks? Meanwhile, Russia just closed its last two semi-independent radio stations and made spreading “fake news” about the war illegal, with a prison sentence of up to 15 years. There are reports that departing airport passengers have to unlock their phones to show their social-media profiles and prove they have not made anti-war statements. Rumours are of mobilisation of men of fighting age and/or an exit ban for those aged 18-60, as in Ukraine: that is where you get an army large enough to occupy a large neighbor from; or more than one neighbor. Or we could see martial law imposed tomorrow. All this suggests a regime doubling down not backing off under pressure. Likewise, for those thinking this is a chance for China to emerge as a good global actor and rebuild bridges to the West by helping broker peace, the US are claiming Beijing knew the invasion was going to happen and asked Putin to delay until after the end of the Olympics.

Of course, Russia is under huge pressure. There are also widespread reports of the Russian military seeing rising troop discontent and self-sabotage: the 40-mile convoy to Kyiv is perhaps a traffic jam, because it isn’t moving into Kyiv proper. There is certainly much more artillery fire to grind out Russian victories across the south of Ukraine. Reportedly, entire residential districts of besieged Mariupol have been leveled; the town of Konotop was told to surrender or be flattened; the key city of Kherson just fell, opening up the roads to the grain port of Odessa; and we already saw the black comedy moment via Belarus’s Lukashenko inadvertently showing the world that Moldova may be next. But if there are to be negotiations, Russia wants to make them with a knee on Ukraine (and Moldova’s?) neck, making any Ukrainian and Western concessions harder to conceive.

As such, Russia and Belarus are being further excised from the international community, economy, and markets. Sanctioned or not, nobody wants to touch Russian goods or assets. As someone on Twitter claims, “I work in the aviation sector, and I can tell you that for all intents and purposes Russian aviation has -at best- about three weeks before it’s show over.” Likewise, no more Apple products; and no more Microsoft. Even MSCI are to remove “uninvestable” Russia from their benchmark market indices (but the big Western accounting firms and management consultancies are staying put). Meanwhile, Ukraine’s foreign minister has stated that coordinated efforts to prevent evasion of sanctions are needed. That says that we are not just in our Ukraine metacrisis Scenario B (war and biting sanctions), but the risks are we are edging towards Scenario C (war and biting sanctions and secondary sanctions – and a bifurcated global economy).

So now let’s pivot to a cliché getting lots of airing by The Street – “You can’t trade geopolitics“. But why not? Is geopolitics inherently different to a natural disaster; or elections with binary outcomes and opinion polls that can be wrong; or economic data which can be six sigma outliers; or central bank policy cycles? It’s either all a random walk or nothing is. The key point is not all “geopolitical” developments matter to markets. In fact, very few do. In order to qualify, one needs to involve either large economies and/or a critical mass of economies, and/or critical inputs/outputs. You shouldn’t try to day-trade a brief firefight in the Middle East. However, that’s not the same as using economic history, political science, sociology, psychology, ideology and theology, heterodox economics, defence studies, and the assumption of complex non-linear dynamics to look for triggers for huge market shifts. That’s just hard to do: it’s not that you can’t trade geopolitics, it’s that *you* can’t trade geopolitics.

As an example, and of more inadvertently funny analysis, see the notes from people who didn’t see this war coming arguing how markets trade during wars – using WW2, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the Gulf War as one example, and then averaging them; or the Suez Crisis, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia (but not Hungary for some reason), the Yom Kippur War, the Soviet-Afghan War, the Gulf War, the bombing of the World Trade Centre, 9/11, the Iraq War, and the 2014 Crimea Annexation as another set, and then averaging them. To put a median through these is like plotting median war deaths in every past conflict (WW2 was 85 million; the Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan was 2 million; the Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia was just *249*). It is geopolitically and statistically ridiculous in that it misunderstands the very fat tail risks involved in both. To put it another way, it makes as much sense as saying “This is the average hospital bill for every health event over your lifetime” when we all know that, except for some unlucky folk, the bills when we are young (e.g., a broken arm or a minor op, etc.) are usually a fraction of the ones of when we are older (e.g., for a serious/chronic disease, heart attack, or organ transplant, etc.)

Yes, ‘Gavrilo Princip’ moments don’t happen every day, and looking for them daily is ridiculous. But not looking for them when we know they can happen is a sillier strategy. Did we not flag back in January and again pre-war that if we were to see this war then:

  • Energy prices would soar: as nobody now wants to touch Russian oil, the US hints at Russian energy sanctions, Brent touches $115, and European gas leaped 55% and coal 30% on the day.
  • Agri commodity prices would soar: as wheat hits a 14-year high and other key benchmarks move higher with it.
  • Bond yields would fall: which they had before partially reversing, and even global bellwether US and UK 2s yo-yo like penny stocks. Despite Powell’s statement yesterday that “the near-term effects on the US economy of the invasion of Ukraine, the ongoing war, the sanctions, and of events to come, remain highly uncertain”, which Philip Marey covers in more detail here, January’s huge ADP job losses flipping to huge job gains on revision is more on the Fed’s radar than NATO. Indeed, while they may go slower now due the war, the war risk is they will have to do more later on, despite the yield curve already screaming policy error. And when that occurs, recall the Fed’s website shows during WW2 it “supported the war effort in several ways: it helped finance wartime spending, fund our allies, embargo our enemies, stabilize the economy, and plan the return to peacetime activities.”
  • Equities would fall: which they have when they remain focused on what matters (which is never for long of course).
  • The Russian ruble would collapse and perhaps see the FX market frozen entirely, which is the case, while the US dollar would outperform as traditional safe haven, especially vs. the Euro. Meanwhile, with Russia disappearing from the economic map, and so Russian petrodollars disappearing from the global rinse cycle just as rising US dollar commodity prices mean global importers need more greenbacks to feed and fuel themselves, ex-Fed Street guru Zoltan Pozsar argues US sanctions are likely to see demand for the dollar to *fall*(!) Yes: once we find an alternative currency with a massive import-based consumer economy, rule of law, liquid financial assets, an open capital account, and a hegemonic military machine. Until then, not so much. That’s a funny market call when trying to trade geopolitics.
  • As argued many times previously, this would be the kind of political excuse needed to crack down harder on crypto, which is what we also heard from the Fed yesterday.

How hard is that “geopolitics” to trade? If you want to ignore all of the above then ironically let one market drive your view of geopolitics, not vice versa: are US defense stocks dipping yesterday signal or noise? But then again, what is the off-ramp from here? How does one plot out the roll-back of current sanctions? Oh dear – we are back to difficult questions for The Street: time to say “You can’t trade geopolitics” again!

7. OIL ISSUES

TD expects oil to spike to $145.00

(zerohedge)

Citi Stopped Out Of Oil Short At Double Digit Loss As TD Sees Oil Spiking To $145

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 09:26 PM

While Wall Street was getting increasingly bulled up on oil prices, one bank was turning ever more bearish, and exactly one month ago when Brent traded at $82, Citigroup’s commodity head told Bloomberg he was advising clients to go short December Brent futures, predicting U.S. production would be “on the low side” at the end of the year while saying he doesn’t expect an LNG crunch in Europe if Russia invades Ukraine.

Boy was he wrong… but at least the pain didn’t last long and earlier today Citi announced that it was closing its oil short at a substantial, 11.5% loss:

We hit the $92/bbl stop loss on our short December 2022 (COZ2) ICE Brent futures trade established on Feb 3 for a loss of 11.5%. While our market outlook remains out-of-consensus and we continue to project significant downside for crude oil prices in a 6-9m context, the timing of this was negatively impacted from the escalating Russia/Ukraine conflict, widening supply risk premiums, and upward price momentum for the crude oil futures strip. With the potential for spot oil prices to clear $125/bbl in the short-term, we step aside. Over the next month, there will probably be a better opportunity to either tactically or thematically short the energy market again.

Meanwhile, in a far more realistic assessment, today TD Securities head of commodity strategy Bart Malek writes that any additional sanctions or unanticipated supply interruption – which are certainly coming now that buyers have balked at buying more oil from Russia  – could “easily see prices surge still higher in the near-term, as this would augment the already significant concern of a large deficit, and there are few alternatives.” Under these conditions, TD writes that it would not be surprising to see key benchmark crudes jump to around $145/b, which was last seen back in the summer of 2008.

While sanctions thus far are meant to leave energy trade largely untouched, the cutting off of some Russian banks from the SWIFT payment system has disrupted commodity trading activity. These shortfalls would be extremely hard to offset with product sourced elsewhere. For that reason, another $25/b move higher could easily happen if either sanctions or some sort of Russia-Ukraine war related event reduces shipments.

Perhaps having heard what’s coming, Brent spiked as high as $118 on Wednesday evening, up $10 since the start of Biden’s SOTU address just 24 hours ago.

The good news is that if oil indeed explodes to around $150 – a level last reached just days before Lehman filed for bankruptcy – it won’t stay there too long for the same reason it didn’t stay there long in the summer of 2008, a dynamic we described back in January in “Shades Of 2008 As Oil Decouples From Everything.” Here is Malek again:

Longer-term however, price at the current $110/b or higher may not be sustainable as there are some avenues that could reduce the risk of shortages, and reduce the impact of the sanctions, moderating scarcity…. At the same time, there will no doubt be demand destruction due to the sky-high prices too.

Translation: the lack of enough oil to keep the market imbalance will lead to demand destruction, lead the forced shuttering of economic output which eventually translates into a recession. And just to make sure of that, the Fed – which has zero control over the supply of global oil – is hiking to make sure that demand – along with the rest of the economy – is truly destroyed. Which brings us to another note from TD, the bank’s Global Markets recap published earlier today, in which it writes that “Perhaps the only certainty at the moment is that everyone’s forecasts are wrong. It is reasonable to ask whether the ECB and/or the Fed will be easing again this year, even if their next steps are toward tightening.

Yes it is: the Fed will be easing as soon as this fall when the stagflationary recession arrives, something BofA’s Michael Hartnett has spent the past few months correctly predicting.

end

Iran/USA/EU

Even though the IAEA are not happy with Iran, speculation is what the Iran deal will be signed in the next 3 days

(zerohedge)

Oil Slides On Speculation Iran Nuclear Deal Will Be Signed “In Next 72 Hours”, Even As IAEA Balks

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 08:48 AM

(Update 9:05am ET) – Not so fast with that rumor. Moments after oil tumbled as speculation of an imminent Iran deal spread, Reuters and Bloomberg blasted headlines suggesting that the IAEA remains unhappy with Iran, which continues to grow its stock of enriched uranium, and remains in breach of many key limits set by the 2015 nuclear deal.

  • IRAN RAISES STOCK OF HIGHLY-ENRICHED URANIUM BY 83%: IAEA
  • IRAN HAS CONTINUED RESTRICTING IAEA ACCESS TO DATA
  • IRAN CONTINUES TO BREACH MANY KEY LIMITS SET BY 2015 NUCLEAR DEAL, INCLUDING URANIUM ENRICHMENT LEVEL AND ENRICHED URANIUM STOCK -QUARTERLY U.N. ATOMIC WATCHDOG REPORT
  • IRAN’S STOCK OF ENRICHED URANIUM IS ESTIMATED TO HAVE GROWN BY 707.4 KG SINCE LAST QUARTERLY REPORT TO 3197.1 KG -IAEA REPORT SEEN BY REUTERS
  • IRAN’S STOCK OF ENRICHED URANIUM INCLUDES AN ESTIMATED 33.2 KG OF URANIUM IN URANIUM HEXAFLUORIDE (UF6) FORM ENRICHED TO UP TO 60% PURITY, NEAR WEAPONS-GRADE -IAEA REPORT
  • IRAN’S STOCKPILE INCLUDES AN ESTIMATED 182.1 KG OF URANIUM IN UF6 FORM ENRICHED TO UP TO 20% PURITY, PLUS 36.5 KG OF URANIUM ENRICHED TO UP TO 20% IN OTHER FORMS -IAEA REPORT

So don’t hold your breath for an immediate Nuclear deal, especially since Iran is already selling most of its product to China.

* * *

Having earlier hit the highest level since 2008, when WTI rose above $116, the highest level since the summer of 2008 when it rose as much as $140 just weeks before Lehman imploded and sent commodity prices across the globe crashing, moments ago oil slumped dropping to overnight session lows.

While there has been no specific news behind the move, traders are attributing it to speculation prompted by Iranian oil journalist Reza Zandi, who tweeted that he has received “definitive news that within the next 72hours the nuclear deal will be signed in Vienna.”

While it remains unclear if this is true -especially since a deal would require proactive support from Russia to effectively help out Joe Biden to push oil prices lower if only briefly – overnight TD Securities laid out an Iranian deal as a potential source of much needed supply at a time when as much as 6mmb/d in Russian supply could be coming off the market, to wit:

A potential Iranian nuclear deal could see roughly 200k b/d of additional crude from fields and more from inventory online fairly quickly and another 1 million b/d over a longer time period.

The news also comes just days after we learned that China is already importing as much Iranian crude as it did before the sanctions, which likely means that even with Iranian oil unlocked, the benefit will be modest and similar to the recent IEA emergency release of 60mm barrels which had no impact on the oil price surge.

However, in a market as jittery as that of oil, the rumor was enough to slam prices. Whether this drop sticks is a different matter.

8 EMERGING MARKET& AUSTRALIA ISSUES

Australia////  NEW ZEALAND/ SOUTH AFRICA/BRAZIL//COVID/VACCINES/LOCKDOWNS

NEW ZEALAND

END

Your early  currency/gold and silver pricing/Asian and European bourse movements/ and interest rate settings THURSDAY morning 7:30 AM

Euro/USA 1.1081 DOWN .0031 /EUROPE BOURSES //ALL RED EXCEPT FRANCE    

USA/ YEN 115.72  UP  0.202 /NOW TARGETS INTEREST RATE AT .11% AS IT WILL BUY UNLIMITED BONDS TO GETS TO THAT LEVEL…

GBP/USA 1.3381  DOWN   0.0016

 Last night Shanghai COMPOSITE CLOSED DOWN 3.08 PTS OR 0.09%

 Hang Sang CLOSED UP123.42 PTS OR 0.55%

AUSTRALIA CLOSED UP 0.55%   // EUROPEAN BOURSES OPENED ALL RED EXCEPT FRANCE  

Trading from Europe and ASIA

I) EUROPEAN BOURSES ALL RED EXCEPT FRANCE    

2/ CHINESE BOURSES / :Hang SANG CLOSED UP 123.42 PTS OR 0.55%

/SHANGHAI CLOSED DOWN 3.03 PTS OR 0.09%

Australia BOURSE CLOSED UP 0.55%

(Nikkei (Japan) CLOSED UP 194.24 PTS OR 0.70%

INDIA’S SENSEX  IN THE RED

Gold very early morning trading: 1930.50

silver:$25.35-

USA dollar index early THURSDAY morning: 97.54  UP 15  CENT(S) from WEDNESDAY’s close.

THIS ENDS THURSDAY MORNING NUMBERS

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And now your closing THURSDAY NUMBERS 1: 00 PM

Portuguese 10 year bond yield: 0.87%  UP 1  in basis point(s) yield from YESTERDAY/

JAPANESE BOND YIELD: +0.169%  up 2 AND 5/10   BASIS POINTS from YESTERDAY/JAPAN losing control of its yield curve/

SPANISH 10 YR BOND YIELD: 1.02%// UP 2   in basis points yield from yesterday.

ITALIAN 10 YR BOND YIELD 1.59 UP 5    points in basis points yield from yesterday./

the Italian 10 yr bond yield is trading 57 points higher than Spain.

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD: FALLS TO +0.020% IN BASIS POINTS ON THE DAY//

THE IMPORTANT SPREAD BETWEEN ITALIAN 10 YR BOND AND GERMAN 10 YEAR BOND IS 1.57% AND NOW ABOVE   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 /USA DOLLAR INDEX/USA 10 YR BOND YIELD/1:00 PM

Euro/USA 1.1049  DOWN .0063    or 63 basis points

USA/Japan: 115.63 UP 0.107 OR YEN DOWN 11  basis points/

Great Britain/USA 1.3339 DOWN 58  BASIS POINTS

Canadian dollar DOWN 33 BASIS pts to 1.2678

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The USA/Yuan,  CNY: closed    ON SHORE  (CLOSED )..DOWN 6.3202  

THE USA/YUAN OFFSHORE:    (YUAN CLOSED (DOWN)..6.3229

TURKISH LIRA:  14.13  EXTREMELY DANGEROUS LEVEL/DEATH WISH/HYPERINFLATION TO BEGIN.

the 10 yr Japanese bond yield  at +0.169

Your closing 10 yr US bond yield DOWN 4  IN basis points from MONDAY at  1.838% //trading well ABOVE the resistance level of 2.27-2.32%) very problematic

 USA 30 yr bond yield: 2.216 DOWN 4 in basis points 

Your closing USA dollar index, 97.87  UP 48   CENT(S) ON THE DAY/1.00 PM/

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

London: CLOSED DOWN 102.91 PTS OR 2.49%

German Dax :  CLOSED DOWN 103.84 points or 1.60%

Paris CAC CLOSED DOWN 263.88PTS OR 1.88% 

Spain IBEX CLOSED DOWN 295.30PTS OR 3.55%

Italian MIB: CLOSED DOWN 552.89 PTS OR 2.25%

WTI Oil price 90.84    12: EST

Brent Oil:  97.01  12:00 EST

USA /RUSSIAN /   RUBLE FALLS TO:   10727 DOWN  4.42 RUBLES/DOLLAR (RUBLE DOWN BY 442  BASIS PTS)

GERMAN 10 YR BOND YIELD; +.020

CLOSING NUMBERS: 4 PM

Euro vs USA: 1.1061 DOWN  .0052   OR DOWN 52 BASIS POINTS

British Pound: 1.3339 DOWN  .0058 or 58 basis pts

USA dollar vs Japanese Yen: 115.43 DOWN .087

USA dollar vs Canadian dollar: 1.2686 UP .0039 (CDN dollar DOWN 39 basis pts)

West Texas intermediate oil: 108.71

Brent: 111.08

USA 10 yr bond yield: 1.851 DOWN 3 points

USA 30 yr bond yield: 2.231  DOWN 2  pts

USA DOLLAR VS TURKISH LIRA: 14.12

USA DOLLAR VS RUSSIA ROUBLE:  110.17 UP 7.52ROUBLES (ROUBLE DOWN 7.52 ROUBLES)//

DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE: DOWN 96.69 PTS OR 0.29%

NASDAQ 100 DOWN 208.48 PTS OR 1.46%

VOLATILITY INDEX: 30.50 UP .30 PTS OR 0.98%

GLD: 180.80 UP 1.07 PTS OR 0.60%

SLV/ 23.37 DOWN .08 PTS OR 0.34%

end)

USA trading day in Graph Form

Bonds & Bullion Bid As Stocks, Crude, & Crypto Crumble

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 04:01 PM

It has been 13 years to the day since Barack Obama called the bottom in stocks. On March 3rd, 2009, President Obama said:

“What you’re now seeing is profit and earning ratios are starting to get to the point where buying stocks is a potentially good deal if you’ve got a long-term perspective on it,”

And since then the S&P is up 527%…

Source: Bloomberg

Today, however, saw stocks lower on the day… but not this much…

Earlier gains in stocks (and drops in oil) came after reports of an imminent Iran deal, but that was walked back quite fast reversing those moves early on. Then remarks from French President Macron regarding his downbeat call with Putin sent stocks reeling lower…

Additionally, Fed Chair Powell had a ‘whatever it takes’ moment when asked what he will to do to regain ‘stable prices’. However, as always, once Europe closed, the bid returned… until 1430ET – margin call time…

Today’s drop took all the majors red for the week, seemingly unable to hold the highs from that crazy meltup last Friday. Of course, with payrolls tomorrow, it’s anyone’s guess what we end up with in stocks…

Russian stocks were a bloodbath again today with RSX down over 20% more after suspending creations last night… with a 400% premium to NAV!!

Source: Bloomberg

Oil prices actually fell today – despite Russian tensions – as headlines reported the Iran deal is imminent which would add significant supply to the extremely tight market…

The issue is – with the supply lines to retail in America – the odds of $4 national average gas at the pump is extremely high already…

Source: Bloomberg

And as Jim Bianco noted, the die is cast on the next recession…

https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X2hvcml6b25fdHdlZXRfZW1iZWRfOTU1NSI6eyJidWNrZXQiOiJodGUiLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X3NwYWNlX2NhcmQiOnsiYnVja2V0Ijoib2ZmIiwidmVyc2lvbiI6bnVsbH19&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1499385705591709698&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.zerohedge.com%2Fmarkets%2Fbonds-bullion-bid-stocks-crude-crypto-crumble&sessionId=9ce55bfb8481c1064dc21c63486a441020d15aeb&siteScreenName=zerohedge&theme=light&widgetsVersion=2582c61%3A1645036219416&width=550px

Bitcoin slipped lower today as headline after headline hit discussing crypto as a way to evade sanctions and the need for sanctions, control etc…

Source: Bloomberg

But while stocks (geopolitical risk and Fed), oil (Iran nuke deal imminent), and crypto (lots of regulation/evasion headline chatter) were all lower on the day, bonds and gold and the dollar were bid.

Yields were mixed with the long-end outperforming and short-end yields slightly higher (10Y -4bps, 2Y +2bps). On the week, the belly is a notable outperformer (7Y -13bps) with both 2Y and 30Y down around 4bps

Source: Bloomberg

Which flattened the yield curve (2s10s) to new cycle lows…

Source: Bloomberg

Powell reaffirmed his view on a 25bps hike in March, but the market priced-in another hike for the whole year (now pricing in 6 full hikes by the end of 2022)…

Source: Bloomberg

The dollar rallied back to recent highs again today…

Source: Bloomberg

The Ruble closed at a new record low at around 109/USD (though off the lows of the day at around 118/USD)

Source: Bloomberg

Gold was also bid as a safe-haven today, rising back to $1940…

Source: Bloomberg

Just for fun, we noticed that Oil prices (in oz of silver) are heading back up to long-term resistance. A barrel of crude has cost between 2 Oz and 5 Oz of silver for most of the last 50 years…

Source: Bloomberg

Finally the FRA/OIS spread is surging higher, signaling stress in the banking sector is starting to rise…

Source: Bloomberg

We are not at anything like panic-levels yet, but it is a key variable to watch as this crisis continues.

I)LATE LAST NIGHT /MORNING TRADING/

END

AFTERNOON

END

II) USA DATA

Huge!  Services are 70% of GDP and its latest data slumped to 12 month lows. Seeing wage growth spiral and thus higher inflation coming.

(zerohedge)

ISM Services Slump To 12-Month Lows: Imminent Wage Growth Spiral Means Higher Inflation As “Great Resignation Is Real”

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 10:17 AM

As omicron restrictions faded, US Manufacturing surveys rebounded in February and today analysts expected the Services sector sentiment to also rebound, but  the reality was different with the usual complete divergence between the two surveys.

  • Markit’s US Services PMI did indeed rebound, rising from 51.2 to 56.5 (but we note that is a slight drop from the preliminary print of 56.7)
  • However, ISM Services tumbled to its lowest since Feb 2021 (dropping from 59.9 to 56.5, against expectations of a rise to 61.1).

Source: Bloomberg

Markit’s survey finds that output charges are rising at the fastest pace on record and the rate of job creation quickens to sharpest since May 2021.

ISM’ Survey shows a plunge in new orders and employment!

Prices are up in everything… except gloves and steel…

There appears to be a shortage of blood collection tubes…

And here is what respondents are saying..

Finally, one quote from the ISM Survey really caught our eye:

The Great Resignation is real:

Employees, contractors and consultants continue to quit their jobs and engagements for opportunities that pay more and have more flexible work options. Millions of light industrial jobs remain open in the U.S., with limited interest from job seekers. Severe labor shortages are expected well into 2022. Corporations need to increase wages and salaries to attract talent and get work done. Faster wage growth is expected to lead to increased inflation.

The IHS Markit US Composite PMI Output Index posted 55.9 in February, up from January’s Omicron-induced low of 51.1 (but was also down very modestly from the flash print). The latest data signalled a sharp expansion in private sector business activity, as output growth regained momentum at manufacturers and service providers.

Inflationary pressures remained elevated across the private sector, despite manufacturers recording a slight slowdown in hikes in supplier costs. The rate of charge inflation quickened to a four-month high amid the sharpest rise in service sector output prices on record.

February’s PMI surveys are broadly consistent with GDP rising at an annualised rate of 3.5%, representing a substantial improvement on the 0.9% rate signalled by the January surveys. First quarter GDP growth is therefore currently averaging just over 2%.

Commenting on the latest survey results, Chris Williamson, Chief Business Economist at IHS Markit, said:

“US service sector companies reported a strong rebound in business activity during February as virus containment measures were eased to the loosest since November. The data add to evidence from manufacturing surveys that the Omicron wave appears to have had only a modest and short-lived impact on the economy.

“Supply chain bottlenecks and poor labor availability remain widespread constraints on output , however, limiting economic growth in manufacturing and services, meaning demand continues to rise faster than output, resulting in unprecedented price pressures.

“The Ukraine conflict is leading to further upward movements in energy and broader commodity prices, which will add further to US inflationary pressures. More uncertain will be the extent to which business confidence is being affected by the war. Business optimism about the year ahead had surged across manufacturing and services in February to the highest for 15 months, as firms looked ahead to looser COVID-19 restrictions and saw signs of easing supply constraints. However, the resilience of this optimism will be tested by the conflict in Europe and will need to be monitored in the coming weeks as a barometer of risk appetite in terms of both spending and investment.”

So – take your pick – PMI strong rebound (Fed can’t hold); ISM plunge (Fed could hold)… and is bad news, good news?

END

US Factory Orders Rise More Than Expected In Jan, Up 9 Straight Months

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 10:12 AM

Following December’s surprising and disappointing decline in US Factory Orders, analysts expected a rebound (from -0.4% MoM to +0.7%) in January and they were right. Notably, December’s 0.4% MoM drop was revised dramatically higher to +0.7% MoM and January’s Factory orders rose 1.4% MoM – double the expected 0.7% MoM rise (which is even more impressive given the revision).

Source: Bloomberg

With the revision, this is the 9th straight month of gains in factory orders which remain up 13.6% YoY.

Ex-transports, factory orders rose 1.0% MoM in Jan (accelerating from the 0.5% MoM rise in December).

Realistically, this jump likely does not include the full effects of Omicron, but for now, it removes another excuse for The Fed to delay aggressive rate-hikes

end

.U.S. weekly jobless claims fall for second straight week; layoffs tumble in February

WASHINGTON, March 3 (Reuters) – The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week, while layoffs declined sharply in February, indicating that the labor market recovery was gaining steam.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 18,000 to a seasonally adjusted 215,000 for the week ended Feb. 26, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 225,000 applications for the latest week.

It was the second straight weekly decline in claims. With a near record 10.9 million job openings at the end of December, companies are holding on to their workers.

Claims could soon fall back below 200,000. They were last below this level in early December.

Claims have dropped from a record high of 6.149 million in early April 2020. Tight labor market conditions are fueling wage growth, which is adding to inflation pressures.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell told lawmakers on Wednesday that “the labor market is extremely tight.” Powell said he would support a 25-basis-point interest rate hike at the U.S. central bank’s March 15-16 policy meeting and would be “prepared to move more aggressively” if inflation does not abate as fast as expected.

Though Russia’s war against Ukraine poses a risk to the labor market through disruptions of supply chains, economists expect the labor market will recoup all the jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic this year. Prices of oil, wheat and other commodities have soared, which will further stoke inflation.

A separate report on Thursday from global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas showed U.S.-based employers announced 15,245 job cuts in February, down 20% from January. Layoffs dropped 56% compared to a year ago.

Companies also announced plans to hire 215,127 workers last month, the largest February total since Challenger began tracking monthly hiring figures in 2002. That compared to the 77,630 jobs announced in January.

“The latest numbers give more evidence that job creation is strong, and employers continue to hold fast to their workforces,” said Andrew Challenger, senior vice president at Challenger, Gray & Christmas. “The churn in the labor market is coming from resignations.”

The increase in planned hiring was led by retailers, with 114,118 jobs announced. Companies in the entertainment/leisure industry planned to add 22,369 jobs to payrolls. The government sector announced plans to hire 17,266 workers. Employers in the automotive industries planned to increase employment by 14,486.

END-

Fourth-quarter labor costs revised higher

March 3, 2022 at 8:46 a.m. ET

MarketWatch

Productivity up 6.6% in final three months of the year, unrevised from the initial estimate

The cost of labor rose sharply in the fourth quarter, according to revised data released by the Labor Department Thursday.

Unit labor costs rose a revised 0.9% in the final three months of the year, up from the initial estimate of a 0.3% gain.

Rising wages can fuel inflation as companies pass along their costs to consumers.

Unit labor costs are up 3.5% over the last four quarters.

Overall fourth-quarter productivity rose 6.6%, unrevised from the initial estimate released last month, the government said.

Output increased 9.1% in the fourth quarter while hours worked rose 2.4%.

Annual average productivity increased 1.9% in 2021.

Productivity data has been volatile during the pandemic. There is a sense that workers have become more productive, but so far the data is inconclusive.

IIb) USA COVID/VACCINE MANDATE STORIES

New York:

end

iii) USA inflation//SHIPPING commentaries//LOG JAMS//

Already shipping is not waiting for sanctions.  It is now already refusing to move Russian cargo not on sanctions

(Greg Miller/FreightWaves)

Shipping Isn’t Waiting For Sanctions. It’s Already Refusing To Move Russian Cargo

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 07:00 PM

By Greg Miller of FreightWaves,

In September 2019, the U.S. sanctioned tanker company Cosco Dalian, a division of Chinese shipping giant Cosco, for carrying Iranian crude. The sanctions only covered the 20 tankers owned by Cosco Dalian, but that didn’t matter. As a precaution, charterers shunned the entire 150-tanker fleet of the Cosco parent, causing tanker spot rates to spike.

Shipping execs don’t just refuse vessels or cargoes based on what’s definitely sanctionable. They do so based on what they believe might possibly be sanctioned now or later. Sanctions are written in precise language, but they’re messy in practice.

That precept is now on full display. Sanctions have yet to specifically target Russian energy exports or (non-dual-use, i.e., non-military) containerized goods, but that doesn’t matter. Many tanker owners and container liner operators are preemptively pulling out of Russia.

On Tuesday, MSC, Maersk and CMA CGM — the top three liner companies in the world — temporarily suspended Russian bookings. Yang Ming, the ninth largest, suspended Russian bookings on Wednesday; ONE, the sixth largest, on Sunday; and Hapag-Lloyd, fifth largest, on Thursday. These six carriers control 62% of global capacity, according to Alphaliner data.

The world’s largest container lines are dropping Russia “to manage sanctions risk but also perhaps manage reputational risk,” said Michelle Linderman, partner of law firm Crowell & Moring, during a panel presented by shipping association BIMCO on Tuesday. “Do they want to be seen as supporting Russia? Or are they going to say at this moment, while this is going on, we don’t want to go anywhere near there.”

The tanker sector is seeing the same pattern of behavior among shipowners and operators. Many are refusing to load Russian oil cargoes even though sanctions don’t bar them from doing so.

“Few owners are now willing to transport Russian oil, resulting in an undersupply of ships [at Russian export terminals],” said Clarksons Platou Securities.

Why shipping companies ‘say no to Russia’

“This is the most comprehensive and coordinated sanctions regime we have ever seen before, let alone one including a former G8 member … and it is rapidly evolving,” said Crowell & Moring partner Dj Wolff during the BIMCO event.

He explained: “Not only do you have to make sure [a shipment] is legally permissible, you’ve got to make sure every other party to the transaction thinks so: your banks, insurer, shipper, receiver, charterer, owner, etc. Otherwise, you won’t get paid, you won’t have a completed shipment or you’ll lose your insurance.”

Linderman added: “Even if you do all of those checks and you are comfortable at this precise moment in time that you can take a ship and go and load cargo or do a transaction with some Russian connection, and you get comfortable with all the parties — that’s just for now. Things are shifting so quickly. What happens if the counterparty that you just signed a charter party with or shipped cargo for gets sanctioned tomorrow, or in the next hour, or in the next 20 minutes?”

Practically speaking, this is convincing shipping companies to “say no to Russia” because it’s not worth the risk, said Wolff.  

“We have seen an enormous number of our clients ask: Should we pause or withdraw from Russia? They say: If you, the outside counsel, are telling me you haven’t been able to digest these 1,200 pages of regulations, then how the heck are we as a company supposed to ensure compliance with them? We should just press pause and wait for some sort of stable state to emerge.

“Some companies have also decided, maybe for legal reasons, maybe for a practical reason, maybe for a reputational reason, to say: I am withdrawing from Russia. You’ve seen some really big energy companies under pressure to do that, and there are a whole lot of companies that we’ve seen who are making this decision off the radar.”

How cargo refusals effect rates

Companies pulling out of the Russia will impact all shipping segments, from containers and tankers to dry bulk and gas transport. There will be market consequences. 

In container shipping, diversions of Russia-bound cargo and intensified inspections for dual-use cargo could exacerbate congestion and network inefficiencies in European trades.

In tanker shipping, there has already been a large upward move in freight rates. As more shipowners refuse to load Russian crude exports, and more importers abstain from buying them, Urals crude trades at a $20 per barrel discount and tanker owners that do agree to carry cargoes can charge dramatically higher rates.

Aframax tankers (with capacity of 750,000 barrels) have obtained rates of $130,000 per day on this route, up from $5,000 per day last week, said Clarksons.

Evercore ISI transportation analyst Jon Chappell told American Shipper: “Russian producers are still making money because the [crude] price is so high, and shipping costs are irrelevant because there’s a massive discount on [Russian] Urals crude right now, so for whoever’s buying it, who cares what you’re paying for shipping? You could pay $200,000 per day, $300,000 per day, and it wouldn’t matter.”

Six-figure-per-day rates are only being earned now by a small number of tankers loading in Northern Europe. Yet the upward rate momentum that began with shipowners’ reluctance to load Russian oil cargoes is spreading globally.

Clarksons estimated on Tuesday that rates for very large crude carriers (VLCCs; tankers that carry 2 million barrels) built in 2015 or later are $27,500 per day, up 591% week on week. It put rates for newer Suezmaxes (capacity: 1 million barrels) at $28,000 per day, up 285% week on week, and rates for newer Aframaxes at $41,800 per day, up 157% week on week. Product tanker rates are up double digits from last week.

According to Chappell: “The midsized crude carriers that operate in these regions — the Baltic, Black Sea, the Med — will see an outsized impact, but it will be a rising tide, as we’ve seen with V’s [VLCC tankers]. The TD3 [the Middle East-to-Japan index that tracks VLCC rates] jumped last week despite the fact that there’s no change in anything out of the Middle East to the Far East.”

Chappell believes broader pricing action shows that the tanker market “was a little bit tighter than people thought, in two regards. One, there’s probably not as much oversupply of tonnage as people thought, and two, the inventory situation we’ve been talking about for nine months is coming a bit more to the fore.

“You can’t really have [inventory] days of demand cover this low and have a geopolitical conflict involving one of the world’s biggest producers of oil and think that it’s not going to have a meaningful impact on commodity prices and the freight market.”

end

Multiple truck convoys converge in India for final push into Washington DC

(EpochTimes)

Multiple Truck Convoys Converge In Indiana For Large Rally En Route To DC

THURSDAY, MAR 03, 2022 – 02:46 PM

Authored by Enrico Trigoso and Mimi Nguyen Ly via The Epoch Times,

Several trucker convoys comprising thousands of vehicles converged in Monrovia, Indiana, and held a rally late on Wednesday before continuing their trip toward Washington to protest against COVID-19 restrictions and mandates.

The People’s Convoy set off from California on Feb. 23. It passed through multiple states including ArizonaTexas, Oklahoma, and Missouri, before arriving in Indiana. The convoy has two more stops to go—Ohio and Maryland—before Washington, where they hope to arrive around March 5.

The group was inspired by trucker convoys in Canada that made global news headlines protesting against COVID-19 restrictions.

It’s hard to quantify exactly how many people are directly participating in The People’s Convoy, not to mention the many thousands more who’ve gathered along the roads and on the overpasses across the country to cheer them on.

Trucks of The People’s Convoy entering a highway in Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

Crowds gather on and around an overpass in support of the trucker convoys passing through the area, in Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

Crowds gather in support of a trucker convoy in Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

A child holds a sign in support of The People’s Convoy, a group of trucks and vehicles, in Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

A dog looks out the window from a truck that joined The People’s Convoy on a trip toward Washington, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

Vehicles and trucks have also joined the convoy along the way. Some are headed toward Washington, while others join the journey for dozens to hundreds of miles before dropping away, one of the convoy’s organizers previously told The Epoch Times.

Meanwhile, hundreds to thousands of cars and trucks that come behind and in front of the convoy, and have honked in support, have often been mistaken as being direct participants of the group.

The convoy grew in size to about 80 trucks and more than 200 other vehicles when it passed through Cuba, Missouri, on Monday, Feb. 28.

Trucks gather in Cuba, Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

By Tuesday and Wednesday, in Monrovia, Indiana, where other U.S. truck convoys converged, there were over 2,000 vehicles with over a hundred trucks in the area. It’s unclear how many vehicles will ultimately be riding to the nation’s capital.

Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita and Mark McCloskey, who is running as a Republican in the Missouri U.S. Senate race, were in attendance at the rally, held at Ted Everett Farm center late Wednesday.

“I’m very proud to be here amongst fellow Hoosiers and Americans who care about their country,” Rokita told The Epoch Times. “I was humbled to offer them encouragement this evening but they gave me back much more inspiration and motivation.”

U.S. Senate candidate Mark McCloskey (L) and Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita (R) attend a rally in Monrovia, Ind., on March 2, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

McCloskey, a Missouri-based lawyer, made national headlines in 2020 for having wielded his gun in self-defense while facing a group of protesters that marched into his gated neighborhood. He told The Epoch Times on Wednesday, “The people of America have woken up, we’re going to stand up and we’re not going to permit it.”

“I can tell you one thing, you look at this crowd, you look at the highways coming here, you look at the overpasses, and [you can say that] the socialists will never complete their takeover of the United States,” he said.

The crowd exceeded the capacity of the indoor venue, which held several hundreds of people. Hundreds more were gathered outside.

“The American people are waking up and they’re marching east,” Brian Brase, one of the convoy organizers, told The Epoch Times late Wednesday.

Brian Brase, an organizer of The People’s Convoy, speaks on stage at a rally at Ted Everett Farm Center in Monrovia, Ind., on March 2, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

He told attendees, “You can stand up to a government that wants to violate your Constitutional rights … and you should. At this point, this is your civic duty to stand up, it is the civic duty of all Americans, of all citizens of the world, to stand up.”

“Freedom isn’t free … Freedom takes sacrifice,” he said, adding that people are sacrificing their incomes and are spending time away from their loved ones to participate in the convoy.

“I’m begging that every truck driver around the world, stand up now,” he said in closing, adding later, “Now is your time to stand up and send a message to your world leaders and your governments that they work for us.”

Dr. Ryan Cole, a pathologist who owns a medical lab in Idaho, speaking as part of the Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC), told the crowd, “It’s up to us to take care of our own health, not the government.”

Dr. Ryan Cole (C) sits with convoy organizers Brian Brase (L) and Maureen Steele (R) at an evening rally in support of The People’s Convoy in Monrovia, Ind., on March 2, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

“This is a government that has overstepped its bounds,” he said. “These are health care agencies that have overstepped their bounds. It is time to restore freedom to this great land. There is no medical emergency anymore. If they tell you that, they are lying.”

The federal government’s COVID-19 pandemic emergency powers have been in place since March 2020. President Joe Biden said on Feb. 18 he was extending the emergency powers beyond March 1.

Cole told the rally late Wednesday, “Today we’re all truckers … keep on trucking and let’s stand in freedom and unity with peace, firmness, and strong resolve. This is about our children … we will never let this happen to us again.”

Leigh Dundas, another organizer, told The Epoch Times that the recent Russian incursion into Ukraine has meant that U.S. convoys have received less coverage, if any, in the press.

“Everyone’s saying ‘oh it’s so unfortunate, the truckers can’t catch a break in the news cycle because of Ukraine and Russia.’ I’m sure Ukraine and Russia have issues but the timing is interesting,” she noted.

“If I were this administration and I’d watched what had happened in Canada … The last thing I would have wanted is to have my back against the wall down here south of the border. I think any distraction is the name of the game. But it’s not working. … the people have spoken, the people have had it.”

Leigh Dundas, an organizer of The People’s Convoy, speaks on stage at a rally at Ted Everett Farm Center in Monrovia, Ind., on March 2, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

She told the audience on the night that the convoy “will not be going in downtown D.C. for reasons that you all know.”

“I don’t need to spell them out, all I need to say is [the truckers] need to stay safe, and we have seen what was going on in the last year, and that is all we need to know about that.”

Authorities have reinstalled fencing around the U.S. Capitol and have called for “extra security” amongst law enforcement agencies in the area, in anticipation of truck convoys arriving in Washington. Fencing had been in place following the Jan. 6, 2021, breach of the U.S. Capitol and was removed in July 2021.

Dundas said that The People’s Convoy has been “a 100 percent peaceful, safe, awesome, transcontinental journey” and thanked The Unity Project and the American Foundation for Civil Liberties and Freedom for their help in launching the movement.

People gather at an overpass in St. Claire, Missouri, in support of The People’s Convoy headed to Washington, on March 1, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

Trucks proceed on the road as part of the People’s Convoy in St. Claire, Missouri, on March 1, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

People hold signs at an overpass in support of The People’s Convoy, in Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

“We have working dogs, we have security, we have huge logistics teams, we have former naval commanders—not because we don’t trust the truckers to be safe, but we want to ensure that they are safe, because they are leading the charge in restoring freedom to America,” she told the crowd, to loud cheers and applause.

Chance Heiner, an Army veteran and participant of The People’s Convoy, in Cuba, Missouri, on Feb. 28, 2022. (Enrico Trigoso/The Epoch Times)

Chance Heiner, an army veteran, told The Epoch Times on Feb. 28, when the convoy was in Cuba, Missouri, “We’ve got to exhaust our last peaceful means. This is what we gotta do. We’re peaceful and that’s how we gotta be.

“Right now we’re peaceful, and we’ve been hoping that the government will give us back our rights.

“And well, the Second Amendment’s there for a reason,” he added. “But we’re a peaceful movement and we’re hoping the government doesn’t push the people to that point.”

iii) USA economic stories

Are Russian Oligarchs Fleeing By Sea To Indian Ocean As Biden Aims To Seize Billions?

WEDNESDAY, MAR 02, 2022 – 10:40 PM

Russian oligarchs could be on the run as Russian President Vladimir Putin continues the seventh day of incursions in Ukraine. President Biden warned in his State of the Union address on Tuesday night that the U.S. and Europe would “seize” the assets of Russian billionaires. Thanks to the Twitterverse, finding some Russian billionaires, if by air or by sea, has become an easy task. 

Bloomberg data shows the four biggest Russian-owned luxury yachts are in the Maldives. The largest is Ocean Victory, a 140-meter superyacht owned by Viktor Filippovich Rashnikov, a Russian billionaire who made most of his wealth in the iron and steel industry. Aluminum tycoon Oleg Deripaska is sailing his 72-meter yacht, called Clio, in the same area. 

A 142-meter superyacht called Nord, owned by Alexei Mordashov, another steel billionaire, is currently transiting Seychelles. Russian banker, Andrey Kostin’s 66-meter Sea Rhapsody, is sailing between Somalia and Maldives. 

An estimated 7% to 10% of the global superyacht fleet is owned by Russians, according to industry watcher Superyacht Group. Overall yacht counts have dipped to 10 from 19 this time last year in the Maldives, while they’ve climbed from five to 12 in the Seychelles, a former British colony known for its palm- fringed islands and sandy beaches. – Bloomberg

By air, tracking Russian billionaires has never been easier. Jack Sweeney, 19, created a Twitter account called “Russian Oligarch Jets” that follows the flight movements of some of Russia’s wealthiest businessmen. The Twitter bot updates followers when and where the private jets take off and land. 

The movement of Russian oligarchs worldwide after the invasion comes as western sanctions are complicating things for Russia and the elite class. The Biden administration has made it very clear that they will “seize their yachts, their luxury apartments, their private jets,” which is probably why some are fleeing to the Indian Ocean. 

“Tonight, I say to the Russian oligarchs and the corrupt leaders who built billions off this violent regime — no more,” Biden said last night. “We’re coming for your ill-begotten gains.”

END

iv)swamp stories

KING REPORT/SWAMP STORIES

The King Report March 3, 2022 Issue 6710Independent View of the News
Powell Sees Fed Rate Liftoff in March While Ukraine Fogs OutlookEffects on U.S. of Ukraine war ‘highly uncertain’ he saysFed must be ‘nimble ‘in data response, evolving outlook“With inflation well above 2% and a strong labor market, we expect it will be appropriate to raise the target range for the federal funds rate at our meeting later this month.  The process of removing policy accommodation in current circumstances will involve both increases in the target range of the federal funds rate and reduction in the size of the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet.”…
    Powell said the labor market is “extremely tight”, essentially a message to lawmakers that the central bank has bet its maximum employment goal in current conditions, which opens the door to its inflation fight.  He said employers are having difficulties filling job openings…
 
Powell also said the Fed will shrink its balance sheet after it starts lifting rates.
 
ESHs traded moderately higher during Nikkei trading but sank during the final hour of Chinese trading.
Once again, ESHs soared after Europe opened, hitting a peak of 4341.75 at 5:15 ET, a 63.50 surge!  ESHs then retreated to 4306.50 at 8:45 ET, at least partially on the release of Powell’s prepared remarks.  ESHs then soared to a session high of 4350.75 at 9:45 ET. 
 
Was the rally hope that more Ukraine-Russia peace talks would be confirmed, or expectations that Powell would be dovish in his testimony at the House Financial Service Committee?  PS – WTI oil hit 112.51 at 8:14 ET; gasoline peaked at +6.8%!
 
After tumbling 32 handles in only 6 minutes, ESHs surged to new highs when Powell said: “I am inclined to propose and support a 25-basis point rate hike” [at the March FOMC meeting].  The rally stalled because Powell also stated, “We would be prepared to move more aggressively” (50bps hikes) “at a meeting or meetings” [if inflation remains] “persistently higher.”
 
Powell said the Fed believes inflation will peak this year and then abate.  Of course, these are the same ‘expert’ forecasters that for almost two years called inflation ‘transitory’.  Jerome firmly stated that Fed policy cannot address supply change problems.
 
WaPo’s @rachsieg: Powell on housing inflation: “Housing inflation really is more an indicator of the tightness of the economy rather than supply side problems. It’s something we watch carefully along with wages, frankly.”
 
After a 22-handle decline, ESHs and stocks surged on this: Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov Says Moscow Is Ready to Discuss Ukraine’s President Zelensky’s Desire to Receive Security Guarantees; Lavrov Says This Is a Positive Step – @FirstSquawk (Did Putin go long ESHs over night?)
 
Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov Says There Should Be a Set of Weapons Specified That Can Be Deployed in Ukraine – IFAX
 
Reuters’ @phildstewart: Russia’s FM Lavrov says Moscow’s aim is demilitarisation of Ukraine but Ukrainians must decide on their own leaders, Interfax reports.  US officials believe Russia aims to install a puppet government.
 
Ukrainian Officials Expected to Arrive in Belarus on Thursday for Next Round of Talks – TASS
 
The US equity rally persisted until the afternoon arrived.  ESHs and stocks then went inert.  Perhaps Lavrov’s admonition that the WWIII would be a nuclear war, chilled ‘peace in our time’ buying.  ESHs dropped 21 handles during the final 10 minutes of trading.
 
After Lavrov’s nuclear war remark, The Pentagon announced the US Def Sec ordered “Our Minuteman-III intercontinental ballistic missile test launch scheduled for this week to be postponed…to demonstrate that we are a responsible nuclear power.”  
 
NYT’s @mschwirtz: Kherson has fallen to the Russian military, becoming the first major Ukrainian city to come under Russian control since the invasion last week. The mayor, Igor Kolykhaev, told me he met today with the Russian commander who plans to set up a military administration.
 
@jonostrower: Boeing is “suspending parts, maintenance and technical support services for Russian airlines.” The company will be suspending “major operations” at its Moscow offices, which do a significant amount of fleet support and design work…The clock on the entire Russian airline industry has just been set back to 1991.
 
GOP Sen. @marcorubio: Putin sent 200k troops & is willing to commit war crimes, so eventually he’ll take some cities.  But that doesn’t mean he is winning. He didn’t invade to take Kherson Mariupol or Kharkiv. He invaded to turn Ukraine into a vassal state like Belarus. And that will NEVER happen
    Tonight (Tues) Putin has launched what appears to be the largest airborne assault of the invasion.  It is likely a final push to take control of the SE approach to Kharkiv, a city he expected to take quickly without resistance & be welcomed by grateful residents as a liberator
 
US Senator Marco Rubio, who is Vice Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, says Putin has launched what appears to be the ‘largest airborne assault of the invasion’ to take Kharkiv.
 
@LostWeapons: Russian battle plans captured, likely from one of the command vehicles captured. Battle plans were approved on January 18th and called for a 15-day war to take over Ukraine
https://twitter.com/LostWeapons/status/1499040883865391107
 
Ukraine has taken hundreds of Russian soldiers prisoner, including senior officers, Ukraine’s presidential adviser says – Reuters
 
The bond & gold tumbles imply equities rallied due to the announcement of Ukraine-Russia peace talks.
 
@nytimes: As the war in Ukraine pushes into its seventh day, Ukrainian resistance has continued to deny the Kremlin the easy victory it anticipated, and Russian forces have intensified the indiscriminate bombing of civilian targets
 
China requested Russia to postpone the Ukraine war until after the Beijing Olympics, U.S. Officials Say – New York Times (If true, it makes Team Biden look even more stupid for sharing intel with China!)
 
Germans Seize Russian Billionaire Alisher Usmanov’s Mega-Yacht (~$600 million value)
https://www.forbes.com/sites/giacomotognini/2022/03/02/germans-seize-russian-billionaire-alisher-usmanovs-mega-yacht/
 
Vladimir Putin tests even Wall Street’s values
Russia’s pariah status after President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine presents Goldman chief David Solomon and his Wall Street peers with a new dilemma. They’re not known for taking principled stands, but this could be the moment… Big Wall Street banks – Goldman plus JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, and Bank of America – have earned nearly $500 million in investment banking fees since 2014, the year when Russia annexed Crimea, based on data from Refinitiv…
https://www.reuters.com/markets/asia/vladimir-putin-tests-even-wall-streets-values-2022-03-02/
Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Goes into Liver Cells and Is Converted to DNA: Study
The messenger RNA (mRNA) from Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine is able to enter human liver cells and is converted into DNA, according to Swedish researchers at Lund University.  The researchers found that when the mRNA vaccine enters the human liver cells, it triggers the cell’s DNA, which is inside the nucleus, to increase the production of the LINE-1 gene expression to make mRNA…
     This is the first time that researchers have shown in vitro or inside a petri dish how an mRNA vaccine is converted into DNA on a human liver cell line, and is what health experts and fact-checkers said for over a year could not occur… (But it’s ‘The Science’!)
https://gospelnewsnetwork.org/2022/03/02/pfizers-covid-19-vaccine-goes-into-liver-cells-and-is-converted-to-dna-study/
 
@kylamb8: This morning at the cybersecurity event, @GovRonDeSantis points out Fauci is now in witness protection as Democrats scramble to pretend they always rebelled against destructive lockdown and obtrusive masking policies and are trying to disassociate themselves from those policies.
 
On Monday, Biden sported a mask while walking solo on the WH grounds.  On Tuesday, at the SOTU Joe was maskless and engaged in numerous close encounters with beaucoup Democrats.  Yesterday, The Mail Order President wore a mask.  The Science! https://twitter.com/KyleMartinsen_/status/1499121518244241412
https://twitter.com/greg_price11/status/1499125273874292740
 
Today –-Obviously headlines and rumors about today’s Ukraine-Russia peace talks in Belarus will impact trading.  There is no way to predict what will happen @charliekirk11: Preliminary Nielsen Ratings show only 14,000,000 Americans tuned in to Biden’s Speech last night, just 22% of the nation.  (But 81 million votes?!)
 
The Big Guy’s SOTU did not go well.
 
@jeremybhughes: CNN: Biden’s 41% Very Positive reaction from viewers is the lowest in 15 years.  Sample was 11% more Dem than the country.
 
@themarketswork: There’s one overarching takeaway from Biden’s SOTU speech last night. Democrats have seen the polling. And they are absolutely terrified
 
Civil war? Biden’s ‘unity agenda’ speech can’t mask the divided state of his own party
A News Analysis: In his first State of the Union, the president was dissed from both sides of his Democratic Party as moderate Manchin sat with GOP and progressives aired counter programming.
    Adding injury to insult, two progressives — firebrand Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Black Caucus member Colin Allred (D-Texas) — felt compelled to air counterprogramming to their own president’s prime time speech…. It was such a rebuke that Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) compared the Democrats’ counteraddresses “to keying your own car and slashing your own tires.”…
https://justthenews.com/government/white-house/civil-war-bidens-unity-agenda-speech-cant-mask-divided-state-his-own-party
 
@MarkBednar: President Biden: “Putin may circle Kyiv with tanks, but he’ll gain the hearts and souls of the Iranian people.”   https://twitter.com/MarkBednar/status/1498846941605675012
 
Biden slammed by both sides of the aisle for SOTU claim that defunding police ‘not the answer’
Biden’s comment drew the ire of the Black Lives Matter Twitter account
“Joe Biden just said the answer isn’t to defund the police, it’s to fund the police,” Outkick the Coverage founder Clay Travis tweeted. “But his party spent the past two years arguing to defund the police. Welcome to the party, pal.”…”Don’t retweet this clip of Biden saying he would ‘absolutely’ ‘redirect’ funding away from police departments after he just made an empty promise to do the opposite at his #SOTU,” Turning Point USA’s Benny Johnson tweeted…
    Progressive Congresswoman Cori Bush also slammed Biden’s support of police and criticized him for not using the phrase “Black Lives Matter” in his speech…
https://www.foxnews.com/politics/biden-slammed-by-both-sides-of-the-aisle-for-sotu-claim-that-defunding-police-not-the-answer
 
@RNCResearch: NBC News’ Andrea Mitchell on Biden’s SOTU: “there was a strange moment at the end when he said ‘go get ’em’ … we’re not quite sure what he means.”
https://twitter.com/RNCResearch/status/1499013714137260037
 
@alexbruesewitz: Since Biden didn’t acknowledge them, I would like to thank my friend (GOP Rep) @laurenboebert for raising awareness about the 13 heroes who were killed during the botched Afghanistan withdrawal.
 
@RNCResearch: Psaki says Biden didn’t “have the time” to mention certain topics last night.  Biden couldn’t make time to mention our 13 servicemembers killed in Afghanistan? (Clean up after Joe, again)
https://twitter.com/RNCResearch/status/1499043316343713796
(This appalling excuse is far worse than not mentioning the lost soldiers in the SOTU.)
 
TOP 5 MOMENTS: Biden draws cheers, jeers at State of the Union speech
Biden was cheered for his tough talk on Russia, jeered in other parts of the speech
Biden’s introduction… 2. United on Ukraine… 3. Domestic agenda acrimony… 4. Bashful Breyer… 5. 13 of them – Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., caused the most controversy of the State of the Union – and it was not because she was wearing an outfit that said “Drill Baby Drill.”  Biden was speaking of helping soldiers who came home sick from Iraq and Afghanistan because of toxic burn pits and the cancers that would one day put them in a “flag-draped coffin.”… Boebert yelled at Biden from the audience: “You put them in, 13 of them,” in reference to the 13 flag-draped coffins that came home from Afghanistan after the deadly and chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan over the summer….
    U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., chose to sit on the Republican side of the aisle during the State of the Union. U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, asked Manchin if they could sit together and Manchin agreed. Manchin said the reason for the move was, “showing the whole world we’re together in standing behind Ukraine.”…  https://www.foxnews.com/politics/biden-state-of-the-union-top-five-moments?test=aedaf50575f19da86e2e168307f2faa4
 
@FoxNews: ‘SO WEIRD’: A smiling Pelosi awkwardly stood up and rubbed her hands together as Biden was talking about the soldiers stationed in Afghanistan and elsewhere “breathing in toxic smoke from burn pits.” https://twitter.com/FoxNews/status/1499139690678657024  (She got a hot tip on a stock or it’s Stoli?)
 
Dem Sen. Schumer with a Top 3 most embarrassing moments at Biden’s SOTU:
https://twitter.com/millanpatterson/status/1498859360553869315
 
The Big Guy has a history of plagiarism.  Oops, he did it again in his SOTU!
 
@ChadGilmartinCA: BIDEN PLAGARIZED TRUMP – Trump, 2018: “The state of our Union is strong because our people are strong.”  Biden, 2022: “The state of the Union is strong because you the American people are strong.”
 
@OldManCormier: I caught Biden stealing Reagan’s lines again.
https://twitter.com/OldManCormier/status/1499043840455548929
 
@RNCResearch: Jen Psaki: Biden “was the vice president the last time Russia invaded Ukraine, this is a pattern” (How could she make this type of blunder?) https://twitter.com/RNCResearch/status/1499037873961639940
 
@charliekirk11: According to a Special Counsel Report, 91 nursing homes in 5 Wisconsin Counties had voter turnout rates between 95% and 100% during the 2020 election.  That’s 30 points higher than overall national turnout in 2020 and 40 points higher  than in 2016. What happened in Wisconsin?.

Let us conclude tonight with this offering from Greg Hunter

end

Well that is all for today. I will see you FRIDAY night

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18 comments

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

    Like

  2. The Seer · · Reply

    Russia can do plenty well trading with China and India.
    The west will fail. The clearing out of satanic elites
    And cabals is taking place.

    Like

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