ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Nov 05 15:28

Goldman Sachs on Housing Slowdown

Nov 05 14:51

Iran president warns of ‘war situation’ as sanctions resume

The U.S. re-imposed all sanctions Monday on Iran that once were lifted under its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, grinding further down on the Islamic Republic’s already-ailing economy in what President Hassan Rouhani described as a “war situation” now facing Tehran.

Iran ran televised air defense drills showing soldiers cheering the downing of a drone, but otherwise held back from any military response over U.S. efforts to curtail what Washington calls its “malign activities” across the Middle East. While previously warning it could ramp up its nuclear program, Iran still honors the atomic accord now limiting its enrichment of uranium, according to the United Nations.

Nov 05 14:34

State of the U.S. economy in November 2018

Nov 05 14:21

Russia's Alternative to SWIFT Already Has Market Majority in Russia

During the ruble crisis of 2014/15 Russia announced in the wake of U.S. and European sanctions over reunifying with Crimea that it would begin building a domestic electronic financial transfer system, an alternative to SWIFT.

That system, System for Transfer of Financial Messages (SPFS), is not only now functioning in Russia, according to a report from RT it now handles the financial transfer data for more than half of Russia’s institutions.

Nov 05 12:17

Five galleries cut ties with Arts Commons after Jordan Peterson lecture concerns

cancellation of trans artist installation

@jordanbpeterson
If it's about ideology -- and this is clearly about ideology -- then it's not about art:

Nov 05 12:03

New Iran Sanctions Risk Long-Term US Isolation

The U.S. is going for the jugular with new Iran sanctions intended to punish those who trade with Teheran. But the U.S. may have a fight on its hands in a possible post- WWII turning-point...

The next step in the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran has begun, with the most severe sanctions being re-imposed on the Islamic Republic. Crucially, they apply not only to Iran but to anyone who continues to do business with it.

It’s not yet clear how disruptive this move will be. While the U.S. intention is to isolate Iran, it is the U.S. that could wind up being more isolated. It depends on the rest of the world’s reaction, and especially Europe’s.

Nov 05 12:00

Watch Live: Pompeo Announces Iran Sanctions 'Waivers'

Update (8:40 am ET): The following countries will receive 'temporary' waivers excusing them from US sanctions on Iranian oil exports.

South Korea
Taiwan
Turkey
Greece
Japan
China
India
Italy

Nov 05 11:18

The Fed Crying Has Begun

Nov 05 09:55

DOJ Investigates 'Mystery' Goldman Executive Involved In $4.5 Billion 1MDB Fraud

Last week, the DOJ filed the first round of criminal charges related to the massive international fraud that was the 1MDB scandal. US prosecutors allege that more than $4.5 billion was embezzled from the sovereign wealth fund, which was set up by the government of disgraced former Prime Minister Najib Razak, eventually leading the ransacked government fund to a default on nearly $2 billion of local currency bonds, briefly denting the value of the Malaysian ringgit. Holders of those bonds are still working on a restructuring deal with the fund. Meanwhile, former Goldman Sachs Southeast Asia Chief Tim Leissner has pleaded guilty to fraud charges and is expected to cooperate with authorities against other more-senior officials at the bank. One of his fellow bankers, Roger Ng, was arrested by Malaysian police and is expected to be extradited to the US.

Nov 05 09:51

XI TELLS CHINA'S CRITICS TO "MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS" IN TRADE EXPO SPEECH; PLEDGES $30 TRILLION IN IMPORTS

"Worry about your own damn self (Mr. Trump)."

That was the overriding message delivered by Chinese President Xi Jingping during his address at the International Import Expo Opening Ceremony in Shanghai on Monday, which featured more than 3,600 companies from 172 countries, regions and organizations, and where Xi urged critics of China's policies to worry about their own problems before opining on China's, according to the FT.

"Each country should work hard to improve its own business environment. One cannot always beautify oneself while criticising others, and one can’t shine a flashlight on other people without looking at oneself," said Mr Xi.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

President Xi seems to be drawing his line in the sand, against the US's actions, including punishing tariffs against Chinese goods.

The problem, however, is that everyone in this country who needs to buy goods from China, is also getting punished by these tariffs.

And the question I hope President Trump and his advisors are asking, is what would China really want to buy from the US?!? It's certainly not our chemical-laden agriculture; it won't be our weapons, as China has, in many instances, surprised and surpassed the US recently, with its drive toward superior weaponry.

I would suggest that President Trump think about focusing in advances in licensed, high-tech research, with generous start-up money, in public/private partnerships. This could make the US the envy of the world, with numerous tech "incubators", and might be a solid avenue of exploration for trade with China.

And in my world, trade trumps war any day.

I am hoping that in a meeting in the sidelines with President Trump, at the G 20 in Buenos Aires, Argentina at the end of this month, that Trump will have something to offer Xi other than more tariffs; if not, I will very concerned about how the possibility of a trade war morphing into an actual shooting war,and quickly, if these issues remain unresolved.

Nov 05 09:15

The Big Short - Credit Swaps

Nov 05 08:57

NORTH KOREA WARNS THEY’LL RETURN TO NUKE DEVELOPMENT IF SANCTIONS AREN’T LIFTED

Over the weekend, North Korea issued a statement warning that they will “seriously consider” returning to the development on nuclear weapons if the US continues to refuse to ease economic sanctions against them.

Since North Korea halted nuclear testing and has made substantial diplomatic progress, many nations have advocated for some early sanctions relief, but so far every such effort has been blocked by the US. North Korea is growing increasingly impatient with that, and with the Trump Administration refusing to reach a peace treaty with them.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo dismissed the threats, and reiterated that the US has no intention of allowing any sanctions relief until America achieves its “ultimate objective.” Though this is meant to be understood as nuclear disarmament, some in North Korea have been increasingly vocal in fearing that the US will never deliver on anything once they’ve already gotten what they want.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF, in fact, President Trump is the negotiator he claims to be, then this arbitrary one-sidedness must be softened.

Otherwise, he risks losing every possible future accommodation North Korea may be willing to give.

IF he slips back into a war footing with North Korea, he will have wasted a very precious opportunity to get North Korea back into the community of nations which have shunned it, at all levels, for so many years, at the US's edict.

Nov 05 07:20

Bad News: Cost of Money Going Higher

Nov 05 07:08

Robots are replacing holiday workers at Amazon with the online retailer hiring 20,000 fewer staff to tackle this year's Christmas rush, says analyst

Amazon is only recruiting an additional 100,000 people for this year, down 20,000 from the two previous Christmases.

Citi analyst Mark May told CNBC that this is likely a early sign of the increased automation at Amazon as it lessens its reliance on human employees.

Nov 05 05:16

55 Ways To Save Money on Your Utility and Water Bills

As the price of just about everything goes up here in the United States, it's going to get a lot harder to pay for basic expenses. We can't do much about tariffs and inflation, so it's time to focus on the things we CAN control.

Here are 55 ways to reduce your monthly utility and water bills.

Nov 04 17:52

High Street crisis 'will cost 120,000 their jobs in 2018'

THE MASSACRE of Britain's high streets is worsening, experts warn today as it emerges that 120,000 retail jobs could be lost this year alone. Alarming new figures reveal job losses among retail workers are at their worst level since the recession a decade ago.

Nov 04 14:53

Turn Off, Tune Out, Drop Out

Nov 04 10:09

Tim Cook loses $11m as Apple's shares plunge more than 6% after firm announces it will STOP reporting how many iPhones it sells

Apple shares plummeted more than 6 percent today after Apple announced it will stop breaking out exactly how many iPhones it sells in its financial results.

The 'jaw dropping' decision caused frustration and fear among investors, with one analyst seeing the move as evidence that the tech giant has 'something to hide.'

The stock's plunge caused Apple to briefly dip below its $1 trillion valuation - a historic milestone it reached in August before closing at $207.48 a share, a drop of 6.63% in a day.

The losses hit CEO Tim Cook's wallet to the tune of more than $11 million through the 878,425 Apple shares he owns, according to the firm's latest SEC filing.

Nov 04 09:34

For Russia Change Comes Swift

Nov 04 09:02

Turkey Seeks to Trade in National Currencies With Russia, China, Iran

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu’s recent remarks echoed President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s earlier call to put an end to the dollar’s domination and begin trading in national currencies.

Delivering an opening speech at the 18th session of the D-8 Council of Foreign Ministers in Antalya, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu announced that Ankara was looking to engage in trade with Russia, China and Iran using national currencies.

“We are experiencing a period of trade wars. The best response against this would be using our local currencies in trade. Turkey is preparing to do trade in local currencies with countries such as China, Russia, Iran and Ukraine. We also continue such negotiations with other countries,” he said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, what happens when no one wants to use the US dollar anymore with which to buy goods and services?!? What happens when to the American economy when that happens?!?

If I have ever seen economic stupidity writ large, it is President Trump's sanctions against Russia, China, and Iran, which is forcing them to work even more closely together economically, and militarily.

Nov 04 08:56

US Military Reportedly Concerned It Won't Be Able to 'Repel Iran's Missiles'

Unnamed military sources, quoted by The Washington Post, have expressed alarm over Iran’s unpredictable reaction to US economic and diplomatic pressure.

The Washington Post has cited several military officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, as expressing concern that reducing the US military presence in the Middle East has dealt a blow to their ability to react to potential Iranian threats amid what they called an increased potential for confrontation due to the sanctions.

The military reportedly believes that it’s the current administration’s policy to deter Iran, including Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of the landmark nuclear deal and efforts to eliminate what National Security Adviser John Bolton branded as “the Iranian menace” in Syria and in the region as a whole that has increased the likelihood of military confrontation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The whole point of the US military and economic posture against Iran, is to insure that it does create a "justification" for war against it.

Nov 04 08:23

White House Says US "Remains Open" To New Iran Deal As Sanctions Loom

After horrifying the executives at HBO by tweeting a meme about the impending reinstatement of sanctions against Iran on Friday (the image was a play on HBO's "Winter is Coming" advertising campaign for its hit series "Game of Thrones"), President Trump clarified that the White House remained open to working out a "more comprehensive" agreement with Iran that would ideally help curb the regime's "malign activities" in the Middle East and "forever block" Iran from building nuclear weapons.

This isn't the first time that Trump has said he is open to a "new deal" with Iran. But the mildly less threatening rhetoric was, we imagine, designed to encourage the pullback in oil prices seen in recent weeks. Earlier in the day, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US would grant sanctions waivers to eight countries (but not the European Union as a whole). The US has also decided not to encourage SWIFT to disconnect Iranian banks from the global financial system.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I agree with the author of this blog about Trump's seemingly softening stance was for public consumption regarding rising oil prices.

But you have to understand; there is a deep reverence in President Trump's attitude toward two of the most bloodthirsty tyrants in the Middle East, and the best contenders for that title are the Butcher of Gaza (Israel's Netanyahu) and the Butcher of Yemen, (Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince bin Salman).

I am quite certain that Trump has given his word to his largest US backer, Sheldon Adelson, and to Netanyahu, that if Iran doesn't pull back from these
alleged "malign activities" (whatever the heck these are supposed to be), that there will be a time and a place for a US-led/Israeli backed, military challenge against it, including a proxy of Saudi Arabian fighters, and regime change in Tehran.

But I would very much like to add a cautionary note to President Trump and his advisors on this; through his sanctions against it, President Trump has drawn Iran, Russia, and China closer together than they have ever been, economically and militarily in the history of those countries.

IF US/ISIS attached fighters pick a fight with either Russia or Iran in Syria, there will be hell to pay, and that may be the way the US believes it can "legitimately" start the war with Iran; through its facilities in Syria, assisting the Syrians and Russians in getting the rebels out.

Right now, the US military doesn't have the weaponry; the troop strength, the manufacturing, or the money to insure a positive outcome to a war against China, Iran, or Russia, in Syria.

The US, through its Presidential Advisor, John Bolton, has stated flatly that
the US military will not leave Syria, as long as there are Iranian advisors there. Russia is still very much involved in Syria, and working with Turkey and other countries toward its reconstruction.

I am deeply concerned that the long fuse of American intervention in Syria, as a "doorway" to a war against Iran is about to get lit, either after the midterms, or the first of next year.

Nov 04 07:59

"The Real Economic Shock Is Yet To Come" - Trade War Deepens Across Asia 

The last chance to avoid a full-blown 2019 trade war may come later this month when President Trump is scheduled to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G-20 Buenos Aires summit in the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina. It will be the first-ever G-20 summit to be hosted in South America and could be one of the most significant meetings in quite some time -- as both leaders will try to resolve trade disputes.

Right now, the economic impact of the escalating trade war between Washington and Beijing seemed to deepen last month as factory activity and export orders dove across Asia, with some analyst warning Reuters that the worst has yet to come.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I really hope these differences can be resolved; trade wars have a nasty reputation for morphing into actual shooting wars.

Nov 04 07:56

Soros Partners With Mastercard To Hand Out Money To Migrants

Billionaire investor George Soros has repeatedly denied rumors that he is helping to finance the migrant caravans making their way up from Honduras and Guatemala through Mexico with the ultimate aim of reaching the US.

But that's about to change, as the "Open Society" founder - who famously financed much of the opposition to Trump SCOTUS pick Brett Kavanaugh - is now partnering with Mastercard to hand out money (in the form of 'investment capital') to migrants, refugees and "others struggling within their communities worldwide," according to Reuters. Through their partnership, Soros is effectively providing open financial support for migrants and refugees seeking to enter the US and Europe.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That last sentence should read, "Through their partnership, Soros is effectively providing open financial support for illegal migrants and refugees seeking to enter the US and Europe.

Nov 04 07:52

For Russia, Change Comes SWIFTly

During the ruble crisis of 2014/15 Russia announced in the wake of U.S. and European sanctions over reunifying with Crimea that it would begin building a domestic electronic financial transfer system, an alternative to SWIFT.

That system, System for Transfer of Financial Messages (SPFS), is not only now functioning in Russia, according to a report from RT it now handles the financial transfer data for more than half of Russia’s institutions.

According to Anatoly Aksakov, head of the Russian parliamentary committee on financial markets:

The number of users of our internal financial messages’ transfer system is now greater than that of those using SWIFT. We’re already holding talks with China, Iran and Turkey, along with several other countries, on linking our system with their systems,” Aksakov said.

“They need to be properly integrated with each other in order to avoid any problems with using the countries’ internal financial messaging systems.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Again, very terrifying that the White House and all the folks at the Fed never really saw this coming, and so quickly.

Nov 03 12:25

Moscow Initiates De-dollarization: India To Pay For S-400 Systems In Rubles

Since it became evident last summer that India was moving forward with purchase of at least five of Russia's S-400 air defense systems, the controversial initiative which is part of India's big ambitions for regional dominance immediately ruffled relations with Washington, resulting in the complete cancellation of at least one planned visit of Mike Pompeo and Jim Mattis to New Delhi.

The S-400s can detect, track and destroy supersonic bombers, drones, fifth-generation fighters, spy planes, and supersonic missiles at a range of up to 400km and altitude of 30km - in what many Indian officials have praised as a game-changing military acquisition which has further cemented the Russian-Indian defense relationship which includes Moscow now accounting for 62 percent of New Delhi’s arms imports.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That Trump and his people couldn't see this coming, in terms of the rapidity with which the US dollar is being shunned in favor of other currencies, is nearly terrifying.

Nov 03 10:48

US Govt Reimposes All Nuclear Sanctions Against Iran

The end of business on Friday marked the end of the six month period between the US withdrawing from the P5+1 nuclear deal and the withdrawal being finalized. As of Monday, the US will be reimposing all sanctions against Iran that they’d previously been required by treaty to ease.

The US intention is to put all international sanctions back exactly as they were before the nuclear deal was signed. Since Iran is still party to the deal, as is most of the rest of the world, many nations do not intend to comply with US demands.

Still, Iran’s economy has been struggling already, with the anticipation of sanctions gravely damaging the currency. This has many ordinary Iranians fearing that their economic struggles are about to get worse, while Iran’s government, as throughout the sanctions, is in a better position to weather the storm.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As I have observed many times in my posts at WRH, just because something is the most ham-fistedly, pig-headedly stupid thing the US government could do, is absolutely no guarantee that the US government won't do it.

Removal of the US from the P5+1 agreement is one of those stupid things, of course demanded by Sheldon Adelson, Trump's major US contributor, and his boss, Israel's Bibi Netanyahu; so Team Trump believes that they have delivered on that, along with designating Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, rather than Tel Aviv.

Everyone inspecting from the IAEA has said, right up to recent times, that Iran is still absolutely in compliance. And when someone as bright as one would have to be to earn a "seat at the table" in the IAEA, tells me Iran is complying, I would very much believe that person's credibility.

But what this completely idiotic move is going to accomplish, is to push Iran, Russia, and China even closer together economically than they already are, so I have to wonder; is a pathological incapability to see any scenario through to is logical conclusion now a mandate for US government work?!? Because folks, that is what it is looking like from here!!

And we have the following headlines, also from antiwar.com:

US Grants Iran Sanction Waivers to Some Countries, but Denies Others

And Germany, UK, France want to protect firms from Sanctions against Iran

So what does Team Trump think will be the ultimate outcome of this insanity?!? Will they go to war with all parts of the world ignoring the US's sanctions?!? I sincerely don't think so, but with this administration, one never can really be certain.

Nov 03 10:46

Schiff: Jobs Are Another Bubble About to Pop

Nov 03 10:40

If Voters Pass Marijuana Initiatives $2 Billion Could Be Generated In Just Four States

By Aaron Kesel

According to a report, the medical and recreational marijuana markets in four states could generate an estimated more than $2 billion in combined sales – provided voters pass legalization ballot initiatives on Nov. 6, Marijuana Business Daily reported...

Nov 03 09:49

The Film The Israel Lobby Doesn't Want You To See

Today The Electronic Intifada published the first two parts of "The Lobby – USA", a four-part undercover investigation by Al Jazeera into Israel’s covert influence campaigns in the United States.

The planned broadcast of the film was prevented by Qatar, which owns Al Jazeera, on behalf of Israel.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am asking all of Rivero's rangers please to see, and share, this documentary; it is possible that some eyes may well be opened by the viewing of this piece.

Nov 03 05:03

Why the World of Investing Often Seems Wacky

Nov 02 14:28

New Yorker Defends Federal Reserve As An "Institution of Government".

HUH? "established institutions of government"? Are they aware that it is a group of wealthy international bankers? A private company? Either they are very unlearned, refusing to learn, or in cahoots.

Take your pick.

Nov 02 14:27

Student Loan Debt Crisis Threatens America

Nov 02 11:35

Almost 1 in 5 Germans is ‘at risk of poverty’ despite record employment – study

Germany may be Europe’s biggest and strongest economy and is enjoying record employment, but one fifth of its citizens are struggling to make ends meet, a new study reveals.
Some 15.5 million people or 19 percent of the population in Germany were “at risk of poverty” or “social exclusion” in 2017, the Federal Statistics Office said.

Even though the unemployment rate in Germany has fallen to record lows, many people still do not earn enough to pay their bills and keep themselves above the poverty line. Some 13.1 million Germans, roughly 16.1 percent of the population, are threatened by poverty precisely because of their low monthly income, the federal statistics bureau says.

Nov 02 11:19

Swedish Central Bank Makes U-Turn on Cash as NIRP (Negative Interest Rate Policy) Is Ending

The Swedish government and its central bank, Riksbank, have been pushing for a “cashless society” for years, and many of Sweden’s bank branches have stopped handling cash altogether. However, Sweden’s central bankers now want to reverse their policy and have proposed making it mandatory for all banks and financial institutions to offer cash services so that it does not disappear as a form of payment.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE WITH YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA