ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Jan 11 08:55

MERKEL RIOTS: German Chancellor Angela Merkel sparks violent clash in Athens

The riots were sparked by the German Chancellor’s arrival in Athens earlier today for talks with Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

Mr Tsipras said the visit marked “the end of a difficult cycle between our two countries”.

Germany has been blamed by some Greeks for tough austerity measures imposed after the country required a series of bailouts following the 2008 financial crash.

Jan 11 08:54

Merkel sparks Athens SHUTDOWN to stop furious protests against EU austerity

GERMAN Chancellor Angela Merkel is bracing for an awkward meeting with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras today, with demonstrations over her visit banned in Athens.

Jan 11 05:55

ER visits ruining US economy

Jan 10 19:33

America’s Most Hated Companies

Jan 10 18:57

The 3 Continents Driving Global Energy Demand

Jan 10 16:22

Lifeline or liquidation? Bankrupt Sears weighs chairman's $5 billion rescue bid.

Sears Chairman Edward Lampert has raised his bid to buy the bankrupt retailer’s assets, submitting a proposal that could top $5 billion.

The new proposal would see Lampert's hedge fund, ESL Investments, take on up to $663 million in additional liabilities in an effort to strengthen its offer before a Monday bankruptcy auction. At stake? Whether the more than 125-year-old retailer, with hundreds of stores and tens of thousands of employees, will land another lifeline from Lampert, its former CEO, or face liquidation.

At a U.S. Bankruptcy Court hearing Tuesday in New York, Hoffman Estates-based Sears Holdings Corp. agreed to consider Lampert’s revised bid to keep the retailer alive alongside other offers for its assets.

Jan 10 15:52

Crude Oil Leads Bond Yields

Jan 10 15:09

What Will Cause The Next Recession?

Jan 10 13:59

S&P 500 Testing Historical Kiss Of Resistance

Jan 10 13:47

Gee, Ya Think? Fed Chairman Powell says he is ‘very worried’ about growing amount of U.S. debt

The Fed chief’s comments came as the annual U.S. deficit reaches new sustained highs above $1 trillion, a fact many economists worry could spell trouble for future generations. Annual deficits have topped $1 trillion before, but never during a time of sustained economic growth like now, raising concern about what would happen if a recession hits.

Jan 10 13:39

Danielle Park – Is Real Estate Next?

Jan 10 12:34

‘Officials' worst nightmare’: Yellow Vests hope to trigger bank run with financial protest

Yellow Vest protesters are hoping to trigger a bank run with a nationwide coordinated cash withdrawal. By threatening the French financial system, protesters say, they want to peacefully force the government to pass their reforms.

“If the banks weaken, the state weakens immediately,” said Yellow Vest “sympathizer” Tahz San on Facebook. “It’s elected officials' worst nightmare.”

Jan 10 12:34

US threatens sanctions against Nord Stream 2 contractors as construction goes at full drive

The US may slap penalties on two European contractors laying the pipeline for the Russian-led Nord Stream 2. The political pressure is still extremely high over the project, which Moscow defines as purely economic.

Swiss-based Allseas Group and Italian Saipem may face US sanctions over firms participating in the highly debated project on behalf of its operating company, Gazprom-owned Nord Stream 2 AG, sources in the German federal government told Handelsblatt.

Allseas will reportedly lay over 90 percent of the controversial pipeline, while Saipem already completed its part of the work.

Jan 10 12:32

TSA agents are QUITTING over the government shutdown: Airport workers' union warns of 'massive security risks' for travelers as staff walk out because they've missed paychecks and won't work for free

U.S. airport security workers and air traffic controllers working without pay have been warning that security and safety could be compromised if the government shutdown continues.

Despite warnings by labor groups representing airport screeners, the Trump administration said on Wednesday that staffing is adequate and travelers have not faced unusual delays.

Union officials said some TSA officers have already quit because of the shutdown and many are considering quitting.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Have the passengers grope each other; that'll save money!

Remember, fly the friendly skies!!! :)

Jan 10 12:16

Bank Of England Boss: China's Renminbi Will Rival The Dollar As Global Reserve Currency

The past year was full of events that inevitably split the global geopolitical space into two camps: those who still support using US currency as a universal financial tool, and those who are turning their back on the greenback.

Jan 10 12:15

Chinese Money Flees Silicon Valley As Trump Clamps Down On Access To US Tech

Thanks to new policies from the Trump administration aimed at cracking down at Beijing's access to strategic US technologies, China has all but halted investments in US-based tech startups, according to Reuters.

Venture funding out of China peaked last year at a record $3 billion according to the Rhodium Group, a New York economic research firm. The spike in capital is thought to have been spurred by investors and tech companies rushing to complete deals before the new regulatory measures were approved in August.

Jan 10 11:49

Trump cancels Davos trip citing ‘Democrat intransigence’ on shutdown

US President Donald Trump has canceled his planned trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, citing the ongoing impasse with congressional Democrats that’s keeping parts of the US government closed for a third week.

Trump, who is visiting the US-Mexico border on Thursday, tweeted from Texas that he will be “respectfully canceling” the Davos trip because of the “Democrats intransigence on border security.”

Jan 10 10:14

Gold Outlook 2019: Uncertainty Makes Gold A “Valuable Strategic Asset” – WGC

As we look ahead, we expect that the interplay between market risk and economic growth in 2019 will drive gold demand. And we explore three key trends that we expect will influence its price performance:

Jan 10 10:11

Priorities? Only 14 MPs showed up to debate ‘extreme poverty’ in the UK

Ending poverty doesn’t seem to be a top priority for British MPs, as only 14 of them showed up to attend a parliamentary debate on the UN report urging the government to address the burning problem.

MPs were supposed to debate the findings of a United Nations report on ‘Extreme Poverty and Human Rights in Northern Ireland’ on Monday, but the House of Commons remained almost empty as the debate got underway.

Jan 10 09:48

15 QUOTES BY SILK ROAD’S DREAD PIRATE ROBERTS THAT SHOW WHY IDEAS ARE SO DANGEROUS TO THE STATE

The internet’s first successful global black market was Silk Road, a website founded by ‘Dread Pirate Roberts,’ the web pseudonym of Ross Ulbricht.

Currently 34 years-old, Ross is serving a double life sentence plus 40 years in federal prison as a political prisoner of the United States. At its root, his crime is that he created a place where people around the world could engage in trade with each other without the oversight of the state. It was an experiment in true privacy and voluntary association that worked so well the state shut it down and inhumanely punished Ross for thinking outside of the statist matrix.

Jan 10 09:46

Comparing Mutual Funds and ETFs

Jan 10 09:45

15 Quotes by Silk Road’s Dread Pirate Roberts that Show Why Ideas are So Dangerous to the State

Currently 34 years-old, Ross is serving a double life sentence plus 40 years in federal prison as a political prisoner of the United States. At its root, his crime is that he created a place where people around the world could engage in trade with each other without the oversight of the state.

Jan 10 09:11

M&S and Debenhams report falling Christmas sales

Debenhams has reported a sharp fall in sales during the crucial Christmas trading period.

Debenhams said customers had been seeking discounts and left their shopping late. It said sales fell 5.7% in the 18 weeks to 5 January.

Marks and Spencer also reported a fall in sales over Christmas, down 2.2%.

Tesco said sales were up, as did John Lewis. But John Lewis warned that staff might not receive bonuses for the first time since 1953.

Much of the focus is on Debenhams, which is closing 50 stores.

Jan 10 09:10

Worst Christmas for retailers in a decade, says BRC

Retail sales were flat in December, as UK businesses experienced their worst Christmas in a decade, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC).

Total retail sales showed 0% year-on-year growth during the month, the worst December performance since 2008.

The BRC said price cuts appeared not to have been enough to encourage shoppers.

A separate report from Barclaycard said consumer spending grew 1.8% year-on-year in December, the lowest rate of growth seen since March 2016.

Jan 10 09:05

‘Food insecurity scandal’: UK MPs urge Theresa May to appoint ‘minister for hunger’

PM Theresa May has been urged by MPs to appoint a ‘minister of hunger’ to address the current food insecurity “scandal” in the UK, accusing the Tory government of allowing efforts to combat malnutrition to slip through the cracks.

The damning report by the cross-party Environmental Audit Committee reveals that 2.2 million British citizens are living with food insecurity, defined as having “limited access to food… due to lack of money or other resources.”

They accused the government of having “failed to recognise and respond” to the problem, claiming there was a “doughnut-shaped hole” in their efforts to meet the UN’s goal of zero hunger and malnutrition by 2030.

Jan 10 06:59

The Recession Will Be Unevenly Distributed

Jan 09 16:43

Samsung warns of sharp sales and profit decline

Samsung Electronics recorded its highest ever profits last quarter, but three months on things aren’t looking so great. The company issued guidance today warning that revenue and profits for the three months ending December 31st 2018 will be sharply down year-on-year. Samsung expects sales of about 59 trillion won (about $52.5 billion), down 11 percent from 12 months prior, while operating profit is set to drop 29 percent to about 10.8 trillion won (about $9.6 billion).

Jan 09 15:57

WALL STREET FELON AND HIGH FREQUENCY TRADERS ANNOUNCE PLAN TO FORM STOCK EXCHANGE

A group of nine financial firms, including an admitted felon and two high-frequency trading powerhouses, announced this week that they plan to open a national stock exchange to compete head on with the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq. We’ll detail those players shortly but first some necessary background to explain why this plan must never come to fruition.

Jan 09 15:36

Bumpy Road Ahead - Prepare for Shocks

Jan 09 12:41

In shift, EU sanctions Iran over planned Europe attacks

The European Union on Tuesday froze the assets of an Iranian intelligence unit and two of its staff, as the Netherlands accused Iran of two killings on its soil and joined France and Denmark in alleging Tehran plotted other attacks in Europe.

Jan 09 12:26

Sanctions Lose Power: Russia’s Economy Continues To Expand, Sanctions Irrelevant

The United States is experiencing the problem of their sanctions no longer working as nations increasingly disobey what is declared by those in government. Despite sanctions, the Russian economy continues to grow at a steady pace and expand.

Inflation in Russia remained low while the expansion of the economy occurred last year according to a World Bank report. “Although economic sanctions tightened, Russia experienced relatively low and stable inflation and increased oil production. As a result of robust domestic activity, the Russian economy expanded at a 1.6 percent pace in the year just ended,” said the report.

Jan 09 12:24

S&P Downgrades PG&E To Junk, Launching Countdown To $800 Million Collateral Call

One of the biggest surprises involving the ongoing collapse of troubled California utility PG&E is how it was possible, that with the company reportedly contemplating a DIP loan ahead of a possible bankruptcy filing which sent PCG stock plunging and its bonds cratering to all time lows, that rating agencies still had the company rated as investment grade.

Jan 09 12:22

"This Is A Completely Horrific Situation": What "Bond King" Gundlach Expects Will Happen In 2019

It's the start of January, which means it's time for Jeff Gundlach's much anticipated "Just Markets" webcast, previewing what he and his DoubleLine fund expect from the capital markets. And if last year's January webcast is any indication, this one is not to be missed considering just how many predictions Gundlach made one year ago that eventually came true.

Courtesy of Bloomberg, here is a summary of what he predicted would happen last January, and the outcome as of Dec 31.

Jan 09 12:22

Fitch Threatens To Cut US Credit Rating As Debt-Ceiling Battle Looms

In what has become a perennial exercise before every debt-ceiling showdown since at least Obama's first term (when S&P did the unthinkable and cut the US's coveted AAA credit rating, exposing itself to extensive abuse by Tim Geithner), ratings agencies are starting to beat the credit-rating downgrade drum, with Fitch getting a jump on the competition Wednesday when its head of sovereign ratings warned that an enduring shutdown battle could negatively impact the negotiations over the debt ceiling, which could prompt Fitch to join S&P in eliminating its AAA rating for the US.

Jan 09 12:16

The Dollar Is Dumping

The US Dollar is plummeting this morning (despite a recent trend more hawkish in Fed rate shift expectations)...

Jan 09 12:15

"No Major Breakthroughs": US Issues Statement On Disappointing Trade Meeting In Beijing

As noted earlier, today's statement on the concluded 3 days of trade talks in Beijing confirmed that the event was a nothinburger, with the WSJ noting that the two sides made "progress toward an agreement but leaving the thorniest issues to be resolved in higher-level talks, according to people with knowledge of the discussions."

During three days of talks between midlevel trade officials from Washington and Beijing in the Chinese capital that ended Wednesday, the two sides made progress on issues such as additional Chinese purchases of U.S. goods and services, as well as opening China’s markets further to American capital, the people said. But they cautioned that the two teams hadn’t yet made a breakthrough and more discussions are needed to resolve a trade fight that has unnerved global markets.

Jan 09 12:13

Is The "Shanghai Accord" 2.0 Coming

Over the weekend, when commenting on the latest rather disappointing RRR cut out of China (which would release just enough liquidity to offset liquidity drains via the MLP and repo) we pointed out another, far more important event which took place in late December, when traders were generally away on vacation, and when the PBOC indicated a critical shift in the official monetary policy description at the December Central Economic Work Conference, from “prudent and neutral” to “prudent with appropriate looseness and tightness”.

Jan 09 11:57

Iran turns to traditional partners as EU tarries on bypassing US sanctions

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says Iran is working with its traditional partners such as China, Russia and India to circumvent the US sanctions.

Zarif told reporters in New Delhi Tuesday that the European Union is moving more slowly than expected to facilitate non-dollar trade with Tehran through a mechanism called the special purpose vehicle (SPV).

"We continue to work with the Europeans for the special purpose vehicle but we will not wait for them [to act]," said Zarif who arrived in the Indian capital late Monday for a three-day visit.

"We are working with our traditional partners like India, China and Russia so that we continue to serve the interests of our people," he added.

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