Posted at 11:54 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

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New York, New Jersey Set Up Mandatory Quarantine Requirement Amid Ebola Threat
Christie: New Policy Has Already Been Used At Newark Liberty International Airport
October 24, 2014 5:00 PM

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — In the wake of the first confirmed Ebola virus case in New York City, the states of New York and New Jersey have set up a new screening system that goes above and beyond the guidelines already set up by federal officials.

As CBS 2’s Alice Gainer reported, no other states have yet set up increased screening procedures for Ebola.

“We believe it’s appropriate to increase the current screening procedures from people coming from affected countries from the current (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention screening procedures),” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday afternoon. “We believe it within the State of New York and the State of New Jersey’s legal rights.”

Under the new rules, state officials will establish a risk level by considering the countries that people have visited and their level of possible exposure to Ebola.

The patients with the highest level of possible exposure will be automatically quarantined for 21 days at a government-regulated facility. Those with a lower risk will be monitored for temperature and symptoms, Cuomo explained.

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50 Percent Of American Workers Make Less Than 28,031 Dollars A Year
By Michael Snyder, on October 23rd, 2014

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The Social Security Administration has just released wage statistics for 2013, and the numbers are startling.  Last year, 50 percent of all American workers made less than $28,031, and 39 percent of all American workers made less than $20,000.  If you worked a full-time job at $10 an hour all year long with two weeks off, you would make $20,000.  So the fact that 39 percent of all workers made less than that amount is rather telling.  This is more evidence of the declining quality of the jobs in this country.  In many homes in America today, both parents are working multiple jobs in a desperate attempt to make ends meet. Our paychecks are stagnant while the cost of living just continues to soar.  And the jobs that are being added to the economy pay a lot less than the jobs lost in the last recession. In fact, it has been estimated that the jobs that have been created since the last recession pay an average of 23 percent less than the jobs that were lost.  We are witnessing the slow-motion destruction of the middle class, and very few of our leaders seem to care.

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New York and New Jersey Tighten Ebola Screenings at Airports
By MARC SANTORAOCT. 24, 2014

The governors of New York and New Jersey announced Friday afternoon that they were ordering all people entering the country through two area airports who had direct contact with Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea to be quarantined.

The announcement comes one day after an American doctor, who had worked in Guinea and returned to New York City earlier in October, tested positive for Ebola and became the first New York patient of the deadly virus.

“A voluntary Ebola quarantine is not enough,” said Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York. “This is too serious a public health situation.”

Outlined in a late afternoon news conference, the new protocols raised a host of questions about how, exactly, the screening process would work and who, exactly, it would target. The two airports in question are Kennedy International Airport and Newark Liberty International Airport.

The rapid escalation of screening measures came as a surprise after a day in which public officials had gone to great lengths to ease public anxiety.

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First Majestic CEO wants silver miners to form counter-cartel against futures shorters
Submitted by cpowell on 10:14PM ET Thursday, October 23, 2014. Section: Daily Dispatches
12:10a CT Friday, October 24, 2014

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

First Majestic Silver CEO Keith Neumeyer, interviewed by Future Money Trends, argues that silver miners should form a counter-cartel to combat the investment houses selling silver short on futures markets. The interview is 16 minutes long and can be heard at Future Money Trends here:

http://www.futuremoneytrends.com/trend-videos/interviews/mining-ceo-seek…

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

China thinks ahead and acts. The West does not think and reacts.

China Scores Cheap Oil 14,000 Miles Away as Glut Deepens
By Bloomberg News Oct 24, 2014 6:43 AM ET

China is finding oil supplies 14,000 miles away, aided by the global rout in prices that’s left producers vying for new markets.

PetroChina Co. said it bought Colombian crude for a northern refinery for the first time because it was good value. The transaction underscores how the world’s second-biggest oil consumer is benefiting as producers from the Middle East to Latin America vie for customers in Asia.

Brent oil futures tumbled to the lowest level since 2010 as the highest U.S. output in almost 30 years cuts its consumption of foreign crude. OPEC’s biggest producers are reducing prices to defend their market share. China consumed the second-biggest amount of crude on record in September and imported the largest volume ever for that time of year, customs data show.

“China will just look to get the cheapest crude possible from whatever source it can,” Virendra Chauhan, a London-based analyst at Energy Aspects Ltd., said by phone Oct. 21. “I expect a lot more volumes flowing to China in particular.”

The country’s crude imports rose 7.8 percent to 27.6 million tons, or 6.74 million barrels a day, in September from last year, the data show. The number of supertankers sailing toward China’s ports surged to a nine-month high last week, according to IHS Fairplay vessel-tracking signals compiled by Bloomberg as of Oct. 17.

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New York doctor becomes fourth to be diagnosed with Ebola in US
Doctor who returned to US from West Africa with a fever tests positive for Ebola at a New York City hospital
By Josie Ensor, US Correspondent
1:51AM BST 24 Oct 2014

A doctor who recently returned to the US from treating Ebola patients in West Africa has become the fourth person in the country to be diagnosed with the disease.

Craig Spencer, 33, who returned from Guinea nine days ago, was admitted to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan with a temperature of 39.4-degrees Celsius, presenting a fever and diarrhea.

Initial tests for the disease returned positive, according to city officials.

Dr Spencer had been working for a month with Doctors without Borders in Guinea – one of three West African nations hardest hit by Ebola.

He arrived back in the US on Oct. 14 on a flight that stopped in Brussels.

He began to feel ill on Tuesday but did not develop a fever until Thursday morning, when he informed the authorities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises those returning from Ebola-hit countries to monitor their health for a 21-day incubation period, remoting any symptoms to authorities.

Bill de Blasio, the city’s mayor, confirmed Dr Spencer’s positive test at a late-night press conference, but urged residents not to panic, insisting the city was fully prepared to stop the disease in its tracks.

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NYPD Stunner: Cops Exit Ebola Victim Apartment, Dump Gloves, Masks In Sidewalk Trash Can
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 10/24/2014 – 09:11

If there was one theme from last night’s Cuomo/De Blasio Ebola press conference it was ‘how everyone has been preparing for months’ for Ebola. We can all be reassured, right? Wrong! As The Daily Mail reports(and these stunning photos show), the police officers involved in securing Dr. Spencer tossed their gloves, masks and the caution tape used to block off access to his apartment in a public trash can.

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Ottawa nears deal to become trading hub for yuan
Nathan VanderKlippe and Adrian Morrow
Published Thursday, Oct. 23 2014, 6:44 PM EDT
Last updated Thursday, Oct. 23 2014, 7:39 PM EDT

The Canadian business establishment expects Ottawa to soon consummate a deal with Beijing that would foster far easier trade between the loonie and China’s currency.

“There’s a high likelihood” an agreement toward building a settlement hub for the yuan, also called the renminbi, will be struck in early November, said Neil Tait, a former long-time banking executive in China who is now vice-chair of the Canada-China Business Council.

“If it doesn’t happen, there will be many of us disappointed,” said Mr. Tait, who has been among those most committed to the idea.

Official talks toward creation of a Canadian settlement hub for the yuan have been ongoing for months, and have involved multiple meetings between the department of finance and the People’s Bank of China, Mr. Tait said. The basic structure of a deal, which would likely include initial establishment of a $30-billion swap line, appears to have been worked out, he said.

It’s not clear whether a deal has been formally concluded, and political issues may yet block its completion. But a Bay Street source said Sino-Canadian talks on the matter are going well and there has been no word of anything that would stop a deal being reached.

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Ebola patient doctor tracked to New York trains, taxis and the High Line
Epidemiologists use Craig Spencer’s Metrocard and credit card to trace his movements around the city
Nicky Woolf in New York
theguardian.com, Friday 24 October 2014 02.55 EDT

Craig Spencer was halfway through the recommended 21-day self-monitoring period for those at risk from the Ebola virus when he went bowling in Brooklyn.

The 33-year-old physician had been working with Doctors Without Borders on the Ebola outbreak in Guinea, one of the three west African countries worst affected by the virus. He finished his work there on 12 October and left the country on 14 October, flying home to John F Kennedy airport in New York via Europe. He arrived in New York on 17 October.

In the days since returning to his apartment in Harlem, he was careful to check his temperature twice a day as part of his monitoring process.

But at some point between returning home from Guinea and experiencing symptoms, officials said, Spencer took a three-mile jog, despite being on a self-imposed limited-contact regime.

Certainly, it seems likely that he thought he was in the clear by Wednesday evening, when he decided to go with friends to Gutter, a bowling alley in Williamsburg.

He did, authorities confirmed at a press conference on Thursday, bowl.

During the day on Wednesday, he may have walked on the High Line – a popular tourist attraction on the west side of Manhattan built on a former elevated railway – and may have also eaten at a restaurant near there, according to officials.

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Foreign central banks cut U.S. bond stakes to lowest since May

NEW YORK, Oct 23 (Reuters) – Foreign central banks slashed their holdings of U.S. Treasuries at the Federal Reserve to their lowest level since May, Fed data released on Thursday showed.

Analysts said the decline in U.S. government bond holdings likely stemmed from a combination of factors including booking profits on the recent rally in Treasuries, and the dollar which hit a four-plus year peak earlier this month.

"Some central banks might be selling dollar to arrest its rise against their currencies. While export-oriented countries typically like a stronger dollar, they don’t want it go up too fast because they could make some imports very expensive," said Christopher Low, chief economist at FTN Financial.

Foreign central banks’ holdings of Treasuries at the Fed fell $20.269 billion, which was the biggest weekly decline in seven months, to $2.961 trillion in the week ended Oct. 22.

Overseas official holdings of Treasuries declined for a fifth straight week, totaling $69 billion.

Their stakes in U.S. agency debt declined $1.442 billion in the latest week to $288.081 billion.

Their combined holdings of U.S. debt at the central bank contracted by $21.908 billion to $3.291 trillion.

The decline in Treasuries holdings in recent weeks suggested a reversal of what happened in August when there was a $11.4 billion in net foreign official inflows in U.S. assets.

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Posted at 11:41 AM (CST) by & filed under Jim's Mailbox.

Jim,

This has to be making the banksters and central planners very, very nervous! We might just find out how far they (meaning the banksters) are willing to go in order to suppress a gold positive event from happening like the Gold initiative vote in Switzerland. We will find out how far they will go.

CIGA Larry

Rick Santelli Predicts Stunning Victory For Swiss Gold Initiative

Today CNBC’s Business News On-Air Editor Rick Santelli surprised King World News when he predicted a stunning victory for the Swiss Gold Initiative.  Santelli also brought up Germany’s struggle to get their gold back from the United States in his powerful interview below.

Eric King:  “Rick, the polling came out (for the Swiss Gold Initiative) and shocked a lot of people, didn’t it?”

Santelli:  “It really did.  This vote will happen on November 30th, and the Swiss National Bank, if this happens, will have to hold 20 percent of their assets in gold.  They will (also) be restricted from liquidating any more gold, and they will be instructed to try to repatriate all the gold they own that is stored in other countries like Britain.  And on a bit of a comical note here, Eric, over the last 5 years Germany has been trying to get some of their gold back from the U.S. and they haven’t had much success. (Laughter)….

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Jim,

Trying to justify QE is good for Main Street when it is NOT.

CIGA Craig

Fed’s $4 Trillion Holdings to Boost Growth Beyond End of QE
By Jeff Kearns Oct 24, 2014 7:42 AM MT

Quantitative easing may turn out to be a gift that keeps on giving for the U.S. economy.

As the Federal Reserve prepares to end its third round of bond buying next week, the central bank plans to hang on to the record $4.48 trillion balance sheet it has accumulated since announcing the first round of purchases in November 2008.

That will continue to keep a lid on borrowing costs, helping the Fed lift inflation closer to its target and providing support to a five-year expansion facing headwinds abroad, from war in the Mideast to slowing growth in Europe and China.

Holding bonds on the Fed’s balance sheet limits the supply of securities trading on the public markets, which helps keep prices up and yields lower than they otherwise would be. That provides stimulus to the economy just as a cut in the Fed’s benchmark interest rate would, according to Michael Gapen, a senior U.S. economist for Barclays Plc in New York and former Fed Board section chief in charge of monetary and financial markets analysis.

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Jim,

I don’t know whether you saw this.

I ask you questions, not because I am a non believer or "basher" but you are the only one I trust to give me a straight answer.

Seems all the other "pro gold" people have an agenda as they either operate PM funds or write PM newsletters.

What concerns me are the myriad of economists and others who are saying the dollar is going to remain strong for quite some time.

I miss your views that you have written on a regular basis, in the past, as you are the only one who I can trust.

Sorry to be a PITA but I wouldn’t feel comfortable going to anyone else.

Have a nice weekend,
CIGA Ron

Ron,

The dollar’s strength comes from Europe committing economic suicide by adopting US approved sanctions against Russia that kill Europe’s economy and helps ours. That is not a long term deal.

Jim

Posted at 9:06 PM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

John Williams shares the following with us.

- U.S. Government Prepares to Use Reduced-Inflation Index for Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA) 
- 2015 Social Security COLA at 1.7% Would Have Been 9.4% without Existing Gimmicks for Understating Inflation 
- September Annual Inflation: 1.7% (CPI-U), 1.6% (CPI-W), 9.4% (ShadowStats) 
- September Real Retail Sales Fell by 0.4% 
- September Real Earnings Fell by 0.4% 
- Existing-Home Sales Headline Gain Dominated by Surge in Distressed Properties; Year-to-Year Sales Contracted for Eleventh Straight Month 
- Real-World Indication of Faltering Third-Quarter Economic Activity

"No. 668: September CPI, Real Retail Sales and Earnings, New-Home Sales, Prospective GDP " 
Web-page: http://www.shadowstats.com

 

New York’s First Ebola Case? Doctor Treating Ebola Patients In Guinea Rushed To Bellevue Hosptial
Tyler Durden on 10/23/2014 14:59 -0400

Just when you thought it was safe to assume that Ebola-in-America was fixed (one day into Ron Klain’s tenure as Ebola Czar), NYPost reports some rather disquieting news. A New York City doctor – who returned from treating Ebola patients in Guinea 10 days ago – has been rushed under police escort to Bellevue Hospital… He is being tested for Ebola. Market liquidity has dried up instantly!

*PATIENT BEING TESTED AT BELLEVUE FOR POSSIBLE EBOLA, NYC SAYS

*NYC HEALTH DEPARTMENT TO ISSUE STATEMENT SOON, SPOKESMAN SAYS

*NYC: PATIENT WITH FEVER, GASTROINTESTINAL SYMPTOMS AT BELLEVUE

*NYC SAYS PATIENT EBOLA TEST RESULTS EXPECTED WITHIN 12 HOURS

*NYC TRACING ALL OF PATIENT’S CONTACTS

*NYC HEALTH DEPARTMENT ALSO WORKING CLOSELY WITH HHC

Update #2:

POSSIBLE NYC EBOLA PATIENT DID NOT SELF-QUARANTINE: CNN

POSSIBLE NYC EBOLA PATIENT TOOK UBER TO BOWLING ALLEY YDAY: CNN

Full Statement on Patient at Bellevue Hospital

Today, EMS HAZ TAC Units transferred to Bellevue Hospital a patient who presented a fever and gastrointestinal symptoms.

The patient is a health care worker who returned to the U.S. within the past 21 days from one of the three countries currently facing the outbreak of this virus.

The patient was transported by a specially trained HAZ TAC unit wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).  After consulting with the hospital and the CDC, DOHMH has decided to conduct a test for the Ebola virus because of this patient’s recent travel history, pattern of symptoms, and past work. DOHMH and HHC are also evaluating the patient for other causes of illness, as these symptoms can also be consistent with salmonella, malaria, or the stomach flu.

More…

Last GEAB excerpt – The world afterwards: towards a BRICS gold backed multi-currency system

Our team thus anticipates that, before anyone actually realizes it, an alternative BRICS monetary system will be operational from 2017. Not a common currency, but a lightweight system, multi-currency, mainly based on the Yuan, the Ruble, the other BRICS currencies and perhaps even the yen, all backed by gold and easily exchanged thanks to modern digital tools; a system also upgradable with the ability and ambition to host other currencies one day.

Sears Closing 100 Stores, Laying Off Over 5,000 Workers
Oct 23rd 2014 9:34AM
By Sruthi Ramakrishnan

Struggling retailer Sears Holdings (SHLD) will lay off at least 5,457 employees and close over 100 stores, many before Christmas, according to a Seeking Alpha report citing liquidation notices and employees.

Sears shares rose 4.6 percent to $36 in premarket trading.

At least 46 Kmart stores, 30 Sears department stores and 31 Sears Auto Centers are scheduled to close before the end of January, the report said.

Sears officials weren’t immediately available for comment.

The company, which is struggling to reduce costs as its sales dwindle, closed 75 Kmart stores and 21 Sears stores in the first half of 2014.

It said last week that it would lease out seven stores, including the one at Pennsylvania’s King of Prussia Mall, to discount fashion chain Primark for an undisclosed amount.

Sears had 1,077 Kmart stores and 793 Sears stores in the United States as of Aug. 2. The company had 226,000 U.S. employees as of Feb. 1.

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Breaking: European Central Banks repatriate gold from USA
October 23, 2014

What is this secret repatriation of Gold about?

We have heard from one very reliable source that repatriation of gold is secretly taking place at this moment from the USA to Europe. This is October 2014!

The information contains details about transported quantities by one of the global security firms being much higher than usual, as well as country of destination.

This leads us to believe that some central banks in Europe may be feeling tension and their boards see that the ‘whatever it takes’ QE, LTRO or OMT policy, or whatever they call this monetary financing, can and probably will have serious repercussions.

The Swiss National Bank (SNB) started selling gold in 2000 near the lows of the market. At that same time, many years ago, the movement to stop this selling started in Switzerland which, on November 30, will lead to a definitive choice by Swiss voters whether to a) Stop selling gold, b)repatriate all foreign held gold, and c) maintain 20% gold backing of SNB assets, or alternatively risk being dictated to by the European Union and the ECB.

More…

Saudi Arabia Surprises Market With Supply Cut Announcement, Oil Jumps
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 10/23/2014 08:19 -0400

Saudi Arabia, it appears, had enough of shooting itself in the foot for its American ‘partners’, and has admitted for the first time that it slashed supply in September. As Bloomberg reports, OPEC’s biggest producer cut supply to mkt by 328k b/d in September to 9.36m b/d, from 9.688m b/d in August, according to a person with knowledge of Saudi Arabia’s oil policy. Prices in September were flat admit this supply cut which suggests along with the build in EIA inventories seen yesterday that Saudi Arabia may have also been forced by global demand weakness to cut supply through October also.

It appears the Saudi supply cut in September offset any demand weakness as prices remained flat… which makes one wonder what the plunge in October represents (global demand weakness or a flip-flopping Saudi Arabia?)

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The intrday reaction to the first public admission of supply cuts

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Big nations snub Beijing bank launch after US lobbying
Jamil Anderlini
Financial Times, London
Tuesday, October 22, 2014

BEIJING — China will officially launch a new $50 billion Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank on Friday as it steps up its challenge to global financial institutions like the World Bank that it feels are dominated by America and its allies.

But only 20 mostly small economies, many of them effectively client states of China, will become founding members of the bank at Friday’s ceremony in Beijing after Washington lobbied furiously to stop other countries from signing up.

When it first unveiled its plan to establish the bank last year, Beijing extended a broad invitation and several European states, as well as Australia, Indonesia, and South Korea initially showed interest.

But thanks to pressure from the US — conveyed by US diplomats in Beijing, Washington, and other capitals — none of these countries will join the bank at this stage, although some are hoping to be involved later.
India will be the only large economy to sign up to the Chinese initiative at the ceremony in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Friday morning, according to people familiar with the matter.

It will be joined by Mongolia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, and all of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations except Indonesia.

Indonesia excused itself from being involved at this stage, saying the newly installed government had not yet had time to consider Beijing’s proposal.

More…

Ebola Chicago O’Hare 2014: Two Passengers On Flights From Liberia Being Evaluated For Symptoms Of Virus
By Philip Ross on October 22 2014 8:50 AM

Two people who arrived at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Tuesday are being evaluated at hospitals in Chicago for signs of Ebola after the passengers, who traveled from Liberia but were on different planes, became ill during their flights. One of the passengers, a child, vomited one time aboard the aircraft, according to Sun-Times Media. The other passenger, an adult traveling alone from Liberia, reported having nausea and diarrhea, but had a normal temperature during a screening.

The child was taken to University of Chicago Medical Center for isolation and evaluation. Members of the child’s family were not symptomatic, but were placed in quarantine until the child’s evaluation could be completed. The second passenger was taken to Rush University Medical Center. Both medical centers are among the four Chicago hospitals that have agreed to accept Ebola patients from other hospitals and health centers should any cases appear in the city, according to the Chicago Tribune.

"The patient has been assigned a dedicated and highly trained team of health care providers, who will deploy strict isolation and infection control procedures,” the University of Chicago Medical Center said in a statement, according to Sun-Times. “We have absolute confidence in this team’s ability to safely care for this patient.”

Despite showing some symptoms consistent with Ebola, health officials have decided not to test the passengers for the disease after determining that both travelers had no known risk of exposure to the virus. “To be clear, at this time there have been no confirmed cases of Ebola, and there is no threat to the general public,” officials from the Chicago Ebola Resource Network said in a statement.

Travelers entering the U.S. whose trips originated in Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea, where the Ebola outbreak has claimed over 4,500 lives and infected thousands more, must fly into one of five airports that have enhanced screening procedures in place, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday. The airports are Washington Dulles International, Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson, Newark’s Liberty International, Chicago’s O’Hare and New York’s John F. Kennedy International.

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9 in Connecticut Being Watched for Symptoms of Ebola
By ANEMONA HARTOCOLLISOCT. 22, 2014

Nine people in Connecticut who may have been exposed to the Ebola virus have been told to stay at home and are being monitored by local health authorities for symptoms, a spokesman for the State Public Health Department said on Wednesday.

The people in question were not sick, the spokesman, William Gerrish, said, but were being watched under an order signed by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Oct. 7, declaring a public health emergency in the state.

They were not publicly identified because of privacy concerns, but officials said three were Yale University students and the others were from one family. At least some had traveled to West Africa.

Mr. Malloy’s order enabled him to give the public health commissioner, Dr. Jewel Mullen, the power, “under conditions prescribed” by her, to order the isolation or quarantine of anyone she reasonably believed to have been exposed to Ebola, infected with it or at risk of transmitting it. Officials said that the quarantining of the nine people was voluntary, and that none had objected to it.

On Wednesday, federal health officials said that starting next week, travelers arriving in six states from Guinea, Liberia or Sierra Leone must have their temperatures taken and stay in touch with health officials daily for 21 days, the incubation period for Ebola. Connecticut is not one of those states.

“The governor has asked the department to act out of an abundance of caution, and that’s exactly what they are doing,” a spokesman for Mr. Malloy said.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Think you have control of your retirement account? Be careful!

Savers who cash in pensions ‘clobbered’ with 45 per cent tax
Many people using new freedoms to withdraw pension savings will be taxed at 45 per cent – even if they are withdrawing as little as £20,000
By Dan Hyde, Consumer Affairs Editor
10:30PM BST 22 Oct 2014

Savers who cash in pensions next year face "emergency" tax charges worth up to a third of their funds, which they will need to claim back, The Telegraph can disclose.

Withdrawals of anything above £4,500 are likely to cause a tax charge of 40 per cent on part of the fund, analysis of official documents showed.

Many people using new freedoms to withdraw pension savings will be taxed at 45 per cent – even if they are withdrawing as little as £20,000.

The charges will leave pensioners thousands of pounds short of their anticipated windfalls, and forced to claim refunds from the taxman.

HMRC has insisted the impact would not be widespread and would only apply if savers could not supply their tax code.

But industry experts said a tax "chaos" awaited hundreds of thousands of people who planned to take advantage of the Government’s reforms, which take effect in April 2015.

Sean McCann, a financial planner at insurer NFU mutual, said: “This will cause many people a nasty shock.

More…

New York hospital evaluating doctor who reported Ebola-like symptoms
Physician, believed to be a 33-year-old man who was working in west Africa, treated for fever and ‘gastrointestinal symptoms’
Jessica Glenza in New York
theguardian.com, Thursday 23 October 2014 18.01 EDT

A physician who recently returned from west Africa was taken to hospital in New York City on Thursday after displaying symptoms consistent with those caused by Ebola.

A New York city councilman, Mark Levine, identified the man as Craig Spencer, 33, a doctor who lives in the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan. A preliminary test confirming whether he has Ebola is expected by early Friday morning.

Health officials said they were beginning to trace the doctor’s contacts, which New York City mayor Bill de Blasio said were not numerous.

“It is our understanding very few people were in direct contact with him,” de Blasio told a news conference. “Every protocol has been followed. We’re hoping for a good outcome for this individual,” he said.

City health officials said the patient worked in one of the three west African countries affected by Ebola, which has killed more than 4,500 people since the current outbreak began. It said he returned to the United States within the last 21 days, which is the maximum incubation period for the virus.

The physician was transported by a team wearing protective gear to Bellevue hospital with a fever and “gastrointestinal symptoms”. Though the city’s statement did not specify, severe diarrhoea is a common Ebola symptom.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

The Patriot Act comes to Canada.

Canada considers ‘preventative detention’ in wake of Ottawa attack
Prime minister Stephen Harper says he plans to strengthen counter-terrorism efforts as parliament returns day after shooting
Justin Ling in Ottawa
The Guardian, Thursday 23 October 2014 15.56 EDT

The Canadian government indicated on Thursday that it intends to speed up proposals to toughen the country’s anti-terror laws in the wake of the attack on parliament in Ottawa, including a measure that would allow “preventative detention”.

As the House of Commons opened to rapturous applause for the sergeant-at-arms, the ceremonial security chief who prevented further tragedy by apparently killing the perpetrator of Wednesday’s brazen assault, prime minister Stephen Harper indicated that his government was resolved to toughen the country’s security legislation.

The governing Conservatives have made no secret of their plan to install new anti-terror powers, giving the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) more powers to track, investigative and detain would-be homegrown terrorists. Harper promised the proposals would be brought forward.

“They need to be much strengthened, and I assure you, Mr Speaker, that work which is already under way will be expedited,” Mr Harper said.

Details of those new powers have yet to be released, but justice minister Peter MacKay indicated to reporters that they will include measures to allow the preventive detention of suspected would-be terrorists.

“We’re examining all those sections of the criminal code, and all measures under the law that will allow us, in some instances, to take pre-emptive measures,” he said.

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Posted at 11:50 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

The events of today brings the War of Terror to Canada.

Ottawa shooting: A day of chaos leaves soldier, gunman dead
Downtown Ottawa remains in lockdown as police conduct searches around parliamentary precinct
Posted: Oct 22, 2014 10:02 AM ET Last Updated: Oct 22, 2014 8:39 PM ET

Parliament Hill came under attack today after a man with a rifle shot and fatally wounded a soldier standing guard at the National War Memorial in downtown Ottawa, before seizing a car and driving to the doors of Parliament Hill’s Centre Block nearby.

The slain soldier is Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, 24, a reservist from Hamilton.

Moments later, MPs and other witnesses reported 30 to 50 shots fired inside the main Parliament building.

It was confirmed later the gunman was shot dead inside the building, felled by the House of Commons sergeant-at-arms and RCMP, according to MPs’ accounts.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper offered condolences for Cirillo’s family, and for the family of Patrice Vincent, another soldier who was killed in an attack earlier this week, in his brief statement.

"For the second time this week, there has been a brutal and violent attack on our soil," he said, adding an attack on Canada’s institutions are an attack "on our country, on our values, on our society, on us Canadians as a free and democratic people who embrace human dignity for all."

"But let there be no misunderstanding — we will not be intimidated, Canada will never be intimidated."

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Swiss gold referendum: Early opinion poll strikes fear
The first opinion poll regarding the Swiss gold referendum suggests the ‘Yes’ campaign has started in the lead.
Author: Lawrence Williams
Posted: Wednesday , 22 Oct 2014

LONDON (MINEWEB) – The first Swiss opinion poll regarding the country’s gold referendum, which takes place at the end of November, will have struck fear into the country’s establishment, giving those in favour of the changes a lead. The poll was taken before the Yes campaign has even presented its case to the people in any detail, which it will do in a press conference tomorrow. The establishment, on the other hand, is totally against the proposal, saying that the passing of the referendum would stifle the future financial management options of the country’s economic policy makers.

The poll proposal was started by Swiss People’s Party MP Luzi Stamm and two other MPs, with the 100,000 signatures required for a referendum obtained by early 2013. The Swiss People’s party is described as a national conservative and right-wing populist political party and is the largest party in the Federal Assembly, with 54 members of the National Council and 5 of the Council of States.

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Referendum results – chart from King World News

The key points to be put forward in the referendum proposals include repatriation of foreign held Swiss gold, a moratorium on selling future gold holdings and perhaps most significantly to purchase sufficient gold to bring the precious metal held up to 20% of the country’s gold and currency reserves from the current 7.7%. This latter aim would involve, according to the writer’s calculations, the purchase of nearly 1,650 tonnes of gold to bring the nation’s holdings to around 2,700 tonnes, which would put it in third place amongst the world’s gold holding nations. It is suggested that such a purchase programme could put a rocket under the gold price, even if phased in over several years.

There is obviously plenty of time left for the Swiss elite to try and put their case across but, as was seen in the runup to the Scottish independence referendum, if they don’t play the media right they could help the anti-establishment cause, rather than turn things around in their favour. In Scotland, the Yes vote for independence gained momentum according to the polls throughout the campaign, and the more that the establishment spelt out what they saw as the disadvantages of independence (the ‘No’ campaign) the stronger the ‘Yes’ campaign performed.  In the event the Yes campaign failed but the difference here is that it was coming from a long way behind, while in Switzerland it seems that its ‘Yes’ campaign may be starting as the front runner.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Hopefully this will lighten up a very dark day at least a bit.

Dog’s reaction to a walk.
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Cat’s reaction to a walk.
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Ottawa Shooter Identified As Canadian National Michael Zehaf Bibeau, Recently Designated A "High-Risk Traveller"
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 10/22/2014 17:27 -0400

Moments ago CBS News reported, citing Law enforcement and U.S. Government sources, that the shooter in today’s tragic Ottawa incident was Michael Abdul Zehaf Bibeau, born in Canada in 1982. One source says he sometime dropped the name Michael and went by Abdul Zehaf Bibeau. At other times he apparently dropped the Abdul. In a report from the Muslim Issue, Zehaf-Bibeau is said to be reportedly of Algerian descent.

Zehaf-Bibeau is the alleged shooter who killed soldier at the national War Memorial before entering the Centre Block and firing off more shots. Epoch Times reporter Matthew Little says that the shooter got as far as the library before Sergeant-At-Arms shot him dead.

Earlier, a Canadian parliament official described the gunman to BBC as looking “Arabian” with “long hair and a small beard.”

According to Montreal reporter Domenic Fazioli, Bibeau was arrested five times in the city. He has three possession charges dating back to 2004 (marijuana and PCP). His two other arrests were for parole violations.

Witnesses said they saw Bibeau wearing a black coat with blue jeans, reports CBC. The same report says gun used in the attack was a double-barrel shotgun. Alberta Labor Minister Ric McIver told the Ottawa Sun that Bibeau was driving a “brown Toyota Corolla with no license plate.” He added that the car “roared up the street and screeched to a halt.”

The Globe and Mail adds that he was recently designated a “high-risk traveller” by the Canadian government and that his passport had been seized – the same circumstances surrounding the case of Martin Rouleau-Couture, the Quebecker who was shot Monday after running down two Canadian Forces soldiers with his car.

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Terror grips Canada: Soldier shot, gunman reportedly storms Parliament
By Phillip Swarts – The Washington Times – Updated: 11:27 a.m. on Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A Canadian soldier was shot at the Ottawa National War Memorial Wednesday, and a gunman reportedly fled into the nation’s Parliament building, raising fears the attacks could be part of “lone wolf” campaigns being carried out by Islamic extremists.

A member of the Canadian parliament, Bernard Trottier, tweeted that a gunman had been shot and killed. Witnesses reported hearing gunfire inside Parliament Hill, which is under lockdown.

Witnesses said people fled the Parliament building by climbing down scaffolding that had been set up for renovations.

Paramedics took the wounded soldier away in an ambulance, and the soldier’s current condition is unknown.

The incident comes just two days after two Canadian soldiers were hit by a car in Quebec driven by a man with jihadist sympathies. One of them was killed.

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Saxobank CIO Warns "Another Shock Drop Is Coming.. And It’s Coming Soon"
Tyler Durden on 10/22/2014 11:35 -0400

Saxo Bank’s Chief Economist Steen Jakobsen is predicting another ‘shock drop’ in the markets within a few weeks. With debt and low inflation continuing to create a nervous atmosphere behind most markets, Steen argues that we will hit fresh lows in mid-November. Steen takes the view that central bank policy is creating a ‘fantasy land’ for investors and he points out that the recent ‘day dive’ in markets was a closer reflection of reality. Steen outlines his suggestions for trading ahead of another dip in mid November with targets for the S&P 500 around 1810 and the Dax at 8000 – 7800.Be long fixed income as it is "a free put on the equity market.. and the economic cycle is not yet ready to adapt to a rising interest rate."

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

An excellent article that speaks of why lower gold is not in the Federal Reserves best interest.

Richard Russell – Expect An Avalanche Of Fiat Money Creation

Today the Godfather of newsletter writers, 90-year old Richard Russell, warned that the world should now brace itself for the creation of a veritable avalanche of fiat currencies.  The 60-year market veteran also covered gold, silver, stocks, China, the U.S. dollar and more.

Russell: “In the early days of the US, the dollar was trusted. The reason it was trusted was that the dollar was backed by physical gold. Those were the days when the dollar was considered “good as gold.” The obvious reason was that a person could take his dollars into any bank, and exchange his dollars for gold.

This changed in 1933 when Americans were forbidden by law to own gold. As far as Americans were concerned, they were now dealing with paper and could no longer exchange their paper for gold.

So in 1933, Americans were no longer on the gold standard. But foreigners who were creditors of the US would settle their accounts in gold. If the US had a debt with a creditor, the creditor could settle his debt by calling in a quantity of gold.

This changed in 1971 when, in the face of an outpouring of US gold, President Nixon slammed the gold window shut. This took the US, both domestically and internationally, off the gold standard. The dollar was simply a piece of paper, comparable to Monopoly money. Following the US’ example, the rest of the world abandoned the gold standard.

Recently every nation has wanted a cheaper currency to aid in its exports. With almost all world currencies depreciating, money has flowed to the US dollar. This is because the US, alone, appears to have a thriving economy. Of course the strong dollar will retard US exports and make foreign goods appear to be bargains.

The strong dollar puts pressure on gold. So far gold has held up remarkably well in the face of world deflationary pressures and the collapsing price of oil. In the face of these global deflationary pressures, the question is – Will the Federal Reserve fight deflation by calling off its tapering and opening its money spigots wide?

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Posted at 11:16 AM (CST) by & filed under Jim's Mailbox.

Jim,

Governor of the Central Bank of China, Zhou Xiaochuan, speaks positive about Gold.

Excerpt:

…Gold market is an important and integral part of China’s financial market. We are now the largest gold producer, as well as the biggest gold importer and consumer in the world.

Click here to read the full article…

Wouldn’t catch Yellen doing that!
Thanks,
CIGA Perry

Posted at 1:46 PM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Good market comment based on the balance sheet of the Fed.

The Fed “IS” the Problem!
Bill Holter for Miles Franklyn

As I wrote yesterday, markets have become schizophrenic and volatility has exploded.  It is obvious the uncertainty regarding “QE” (monetization) is at the heart of this renewed volatility.  I do want to mention and remind you of past crashes and vicious bear markets, they ALL have seen big volatility (in both directions) prior to the collapse.  1929, 1987, 2000, 2008 …they all experienced big swings in the market prior to the big declines, this is what I believe we are experiencing now.

Before getting to my topic “the Fed IS the problem,” I want to remind you how we have gotten here.  Back in 2008, we had both fiscal and monetary stimulus as the policy response to dysfunctional markets and a shrinking economy.  You might remember Hank Paulson talking about his “bazooka” TARP plan while the Fed was lowering rates furiously and even lending $16 trillion secretly.  They threw the proverbial kitchen sink at the problems.  The problems did not go away nor were they fixed, they were only postponed.  The postponement date now seems to be upon us as the end of another QE nears …or another round must begin.  Can the U.S. Treasury pump more fiscal stimulus without spooking the bond market and exposing insolvency?  Who will buy another “1 off” stimulus plan?  If the answer is “no one” then it will fall solely on the shoulders of the Fed.  Do you see where this goes?

The Fed is literally backed into a corner.  They have to reflate the system yet they themselves are stretched more than any monetary entity in history.  They are levered at nearly 80 to 1.  This means the Fed can only withstand a 1.25% loss on total assets before their capital is wiped out.  I have a question for you, do you really believe the Fed has not ALREADY lost 1.25% on total assets?  Please remember, they “absorbed” the “crappy” assets after the 2008 debacle.  They were buying bonds from banks in order to get the assets off of the books of the banking system …so that the system itself could pretend to still be solvent.  Do you remember when some of these assets were offered for sale and the auctions immediately pulled because the bids were coming in UNDER .20 cents on the dollar?  Do you suppose on their entire book of business there actually is any equity left?

The answer of course is no, the Fed is most probably already insolvent and has been since their last white knight, “lender of last resort” exercise.  What I am trying to point at here is there cannot be another crisis like 2008 because there is no longer anything left big enough to reflate the system.  The Treasury doesn’t have the might and neither does the Fed.  Herein lies the problem, everyone has looked to the Fed since 2008 to save the system.  Everyone has relied on the Fed to create “the bid” so to speak, the saying “the Fed’s got your back” comes to mind.  But here they are with a severely crippled balance sheet, a history of 4 rounds of QE (plus the secretive $16 trillion) and …the markets are beginning to test them again.

Understand what I mean by “testing.”  The markets are throwing a temper tantrum and want “more” liquidity, can the Fed really do it?  Yes, technically yes they can but only by wrecking an already wrecked balance sheet.  The next question is what happens if it doesn’t work?  What happens if the selling does not abate?  What happens if the markets actually realize that QE has done very little to reflate the real economy and all of the accounting tricks have been used up?  What happens if speculators go on the attack and call the Fed’s bluff?  Who will step up and save the Fed?

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Russia Is Going On A Gold Reserve Buying Spree To Counteract Sanctions
Nigel Wilson, International Business Times
Oct. 21, 2014, 11:04 AM

Russia has increased its gold holdings in recent months as its economy feels the heat from the unresolved crisis in eastern Ukraine.

Amid declining relations with the European Union and the United States that could hurt its substantial dollar and euro reserves, Russia has instead focused on expanding purchases of gold bullion and the Chinese yuan currency.

Since Russia annexed the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Ukraine in March, drawing international condemnation and a raft of economic sanctions from Western powers, Russia’s gold reserves have soared beyond those of Switzerland and China. Its gold holdings stand at the highest level for more than two decades and are currently the fifth largest reserves in the world.

Its holdings increased to 35.769 million ounces at in August, according to International Monetary Fund data. By the same data, that would mean reserves have almost tripled since 2005.

The latest surge has coincided with a period of economic volatility, with Western powers restricting Russia’s access to global financial markets in response to Russia’s behaviour in eastern Ukraine. Sanctions have also targeted specific Russian companies and even entire sectors of the economy. A shaky ceasefire between pro-Russian rebels and government forces has held for weeks.

Yet, Moscow’s increased spending on gold in 2014 fits in with the country’s long-term investment strategy, according to Eugen Weinberg, head of commodities research at Commerzbank AG.

"Russia has been the largest official buyer for years," Weinberg told Bloomberg. "It’s part of a long-term strategy of amassing gold reserves and diversifying its foreign-exchange reserves."

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Posted at 4:14 PM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

With friends like these who needs enemies.

Saudi Arabia steps up beheadings; some see political message
By Angus McDowall

RIYADH (Reuters) – Immediately after his sword falls, the Saudi Arabian executioner steps backwards to avoid soiling his clothes with the blood of the condemned man, whose headless body can be seen slumping over backwards in the shaky online film.

After perfunctorily checking the white folds of his robe for flecks of red, the executioner wipes his blade with a tissue, which he drops onto the corpse and walks away.

A sudden surge in public executions in Saudi Arabia in the last two months has coincided with a U.S.-led bombing campaign against Islamic State. This has led to inevitable comparisons in Western media between Islamic State’s beheadings and those practiced in Saudi Arabia.

Defenders of the Saudi death penalty say beheadings, usually with a single sword stroke, are at least as humane as lethal injections in the United States. They deplore any comparison between the kingdom’s execution of convicted criminals and Islamic State’s extra-judicial killing of innocent hostages.

But rights activists say they are more concerned by the justice system behind the death penalty in the kingdom than by its particular method of execution. And critics of the Al Saud ruling family say the latest wave of executions may have a political message, with Riyadh determined to demonstrate its toughness at a moment of regional turmoil.

Saudi Arabia beheaded 26 people in August, more than in the first seven months of the year combined. The total for the year now stands at 59, compared to 69 for all of last year, according to Human Rights Watch.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

I am sure that a revelation of the mayhem in metals and currency would at least equal what is known now.

Forex-Rigging Fines Could Hit $41 Billion Globally: Citi
By Richard Partington Oct 20, 2014 12:48 PM ET

Banks could have to pay as much as $41 billion globally to settle probes into allegations traders rigged benchmarks in the currency markets, Citigroup Inc. (C) said today.

Deutsche Bank AG (DBK) is seen as probably the “most impacted” with a fine of as much as 5.1 billion euros ($6.5 billion), Citigroup analysts led by Kinner Lakhani calculated, estimating the Frankfurt-based bank’s settlements could reach 10 percent of its tangible book value, or its assets’ worth.

Using similar calculations, Barclays Plc (BARC) could face as much as 3 billion pounds ($4.8 billion) in fines and UBS AG (UBSN) penalties of 4.3 billion Swiss francs ($4.6 billion), they wrote in a note first sent to clients on Oct. 3.

Authorities around the world are scrutinizing allegations that dealers traded ahead of their clients and colluded to rig currency benchmarks. Regulators in the U.K. and U.S. could reach settlements with some banks as soon as next month, and prosecutors at the U.S. Department of Justice plans to charge one by the end of the year, people with knowledge of the matter have said.

Spokesmen for Deutsche Bank, Barclays and UBS declined to comment on the Citigroup estimates.

The Citigroup analysts made their calculations using a Sept. 26 Reuters report that the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority settlements could include fines totaling about 1.8 billion pounds. They derived their estimates for how high fines could go in other investigations from that baseline, using banks’ settlements in the London interbank offered rate manipulation cases as a guide.

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One-third of working Americans support two-thirds of the population: The hidden figures of those not in the labor force and transfer payments.
Posted by mybudget360 in banks, debt, economy, government

There still seems to be little acknowledgement of the massive army of people now falling into the category labeled as not in the labor force. Some of this growth is predictable like many older Americans hitting retirement age. But this only explains a small portion of the change since many older Americans are needing to work much longer since they have paltry retirement savings. The unemployment rate dropping dramatically has largely been driven by this category expanding and labor force participation is at generational lows. You also have spending growing in the form of military, Medicare, and Social Security that are now eating up a larger portion of the budget. Deficit spending continues to occur in the face of a booming economy. Why? The math shows that one-third of private sector workers are supporting two-thirds of the population. We have over 92 million Americans that are now part of the not in the labor force category. Let us dig into the numbers even further since some tend to think this is only happening because of older baby boomers.

Not in the labor force demographics – not just old people

People tend to think that those in the not in the labor force category are largely older people. That is true but we’ve seen a large growth of those in their prime working years landing in this category. That is not a good thing. We’re also seeing more students go to college which is positive as long as you are not going into massive debt and are pursuing a quality education. Sadly, many are going into deep debt for a mediocre education.

Let us look at the not in the labor force category carefully:

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Source: BLS, Jobenomics Blog

This is a very high number of people not in the labor force. Nearly one-third of the country falls in this category. And what we find is more older people are making up a larger portion of the labor force.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

It is about time that the bond market got a good taste of the "New Normal" algos have forced us to live with for years.

Seeking a Cause After 10-Year Treasury Bond’s Unnerving Move
By Peter Eavis
October 19, 2014 1:00 pm

During the turmoil in global markets on Wednesday, something happened that bond traders will not soon forget.

Soon after 9 a.m., the yield on one of the world’s most-traded bonds, the 10-year Treasury, went into a bizarre free fall. This particular Treasury note is tracked obsessively by Wall Street and is a reference for other interest rates across the wider economy. Investors see it as a haven in times of stress.

On Wednesday morning, stock markets in Europe were sliding, and fears about the strength of the global economy were building. After the Treasury market opened, the yield on the 10-year Treasury, which moves in the opposite direction of its price, plunged far below the 2.2 percent that it had closed at the day before. By 9:36 a.m. on Wednesday, it hit 1.9 percent. Then it snapped right back, and within 15 minutes, was again trading above 2 percent.

Such changes may seem small compared with other securities, but for the Treasury market, which usually moves incrementally, they were huge. The drop in the yield was similar to the move that occurred when Lehman Brothers collapsed.

The white-knuckle move by the 10-year Treasury continues to stun traders and investors. “If you are steeped in bond market lore, you will be telling your grandchildren about this move,” James A. Bianco, president of Bianco Research, said.

In some ways, the wild ride could be shrugged off as one of those inexplicable things that occasionally happen in markets. But the plunge in the Treasury yield could be a sign of structural weakness in the market. And this volatility caught the eye of Wall Street’s main regulator, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. At an already-scheduled meeting on Thursday with representatives of Wall Street bond-trading firms, Wednesday’s movements in the Treasury market were discussed, according to two people who were briefed on the proceedings but spoke on the condition that they not be identified because they were not authorized to speak about the meeting.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

An insightful comment on IBM’s miss on earnings.

The Canary In Big Blue’s Mainframe: Why IBM’s Q3 Bust Marks A Turning Point
by David Stockman • October 20, 2014

IBM has long been a poster boy for the untoward effects of central bank financial repression. For most of this century the once and faded king of tech has been in a modality of slow liquidation, leveraging up its balance sheet with cheap debt to fund stock buybacks, dividends and accounting-driven two-bit M&A deals. This morning that destructive strategy-pursued by two incompetent CEOs in a row-came to a thundering crash.  IBM is now down by 7% and deserves to go far lower.

Perhaps even the robo-traders have had enough-given that IBM reported its 10th straight quarter of negative revenue growth, a $4.7 billion write-down of its chips business and a huge 12% miss on even the street’s phony “ex-items” earnings number. But the canary in Big Blue’s mainframe was undoubtedly one simple thing, as Zero Hedge cogently noted:

“…..the buyback “strategy” finally hit a brick wall.”

After repurchasing an average of $6 billion shares during each of the past three quarters, buybacks dropped to only $1.7 billion in Q3. And the latter marked the lowest anualized repurchase rate since 2009. Likewise, for the first time in 10 quarters IBM’s net debt also stopped growing.

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But the dismal charts above are only the most recent manifestation of IBM’s self-liquidation. During the 31 quarters since the end of 2006, IBM has spent $111 billion on share buybacks and another $23 billion on dividends. And it goes without saying that this staggering total of $134 billion, which was pumped into the coffers of the fast money traders who rent Big Blues shares and the mutual fund and institutional investors who index them, did accomplish wonders for its stock price. The latter vaulted in nearly a perfect chart climb from $100 to $200 per share before it recent slide.

Here’s the fly in the ointment, however. During this same nearly eight year period, IBM reported net income of only $107 billion. So its paid out 125% of its earnings to shareholders—-and not just for a brief interval when it was deciding on a new business model after its historic hardware business went flat.

In fact, it’s new business model amounted to eating its tail. During the period when it was spending $134 billion on buybacks and dividends it invested just $33 billion in CapEx compared to about $40 billion in DD&A.  In other words, to fund its shareholder distributions and petty M&A deals it was stealing from its depreciation accounts, as well.

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Posted at 2:17 PM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

A step at a time on a path that will not be diverted from.

Russians and Chinese are ditching the dollar as Europeans start using renminbi in their reserves
by Simon Black on October 17, 2014
New York, USA

At present, US dollar accounts for roughly 61% of the world’s foreign exchange reserves.

It’s still a safe bet for most, not because the currency is actually strong, but because so many others are already so reliant on it.

Between those with reserves in and pegs to the US dollar, many countries have given their allegiance, and now have a vested interest in the health of the currency.

Due to this common interest, a sort of unofficial, involuntary alliance has been formed between them all.

Together, they’re all playing along, pretending that everything is fine. If the dollar collapses, they’re all screwed, so they’ve got to get each other’s backs.

From the throne of the world’s reserve currency, the Federal Reserve, with the power to print the US dollar, feels dangerously omnipotent.

They can get away with just about anything. For now.

The central bankers get to print dollars and spend them at current prices, before the stuff hits the wider market and diminishes its overall value.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

The IMF war is costly?

Pavel Klimkin: assistance of promised $30 billion insufficient for Ukraine
October 18, 13:48 UTC+4

BERLIN, October 18. /TASS/. Ukraine requires bigger financial support than the $30 billion, which the West promised to Kiev in loans, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Pavel Klimkin said in an interview with Germany’s Wirtshaftsvohe, published on Saturday.

“Our position is the reduction of GDP will make between seven and eight percent. I believe we shall require much bigger financing,” he said.

The Ukrainian foreign minister explained, enterprises in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions were not working, and consequences from a situation like this could not have been forecasted in spring, where the international support to Kiev was discussed.

In late April, the IMF adopted a two-year credit programme of $17.01 billion to finance Ukraine’s economy. The first tranche of $3.19 billion was transferred in early May. The total financing by IMF, the World Bank, other financial institutions and countries is expected to make $30 billion.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Part of the dollar value equation

Russia, Ukraine reach agreement on Ukraine’s debts repayment – Gazprom CEO
October 17, 22:10 UTC+4

“Progress has been reached on all key issues to resume gas supplies to Ukraine", Alexei Miller, said on Friday

MILAN, October 17. /TASS/. Russia and Ukraine have reached progress on key issues of gas supplies to Ukraine, including repayment of debts, CEO of Russia’s gas giant Gazprom, Alexei Miller, said on Friday.

“Progress has been reached on all key issues to resume gas supplies to Ukraine: repayment of the current debt of 1.450 billion U.S. dollars, repayment of an overall debt of 3.1 billion U.S. dollars by the yearend, advance payment for monthly gas supplies, and a price of 385 U.S. dollars,” he said.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

And with flights still coming, perhaps we are too.

‘We’re a floating petri dish’: Panic onboard the ‘Ebola cruise’
When a woman who had worked in an Ebola laboratory was found to be travelling on a Caribbean cruise ship, panic ensued, writes Nick Allen and Rob Crilly
By Nick Allen, Dallas and Rob Crilly
5:32PM BST 18 Oct 2014

It was supposed to be an escape to the Caribbean sunshine for a week of partying, relaxation, and sipping champagne while watching gorgeous sunsets from the decks of a luxury cruise ship.

But four days after the Carnival Magic set sail from Galveston, Texas rumours began swirling that all was not well on board.

The ship, complete with a swimming pool, an array of water slides, and a giant cinema screen, inexplicably stopped off the coast of Belize and the whispers began.

"The rumours were going round – we were stuck in the mud. Someone’s been kidnapped," said one passenger.

As the theories got wilder over the clink of cocktail glasses at the bar, no-one imagined they were actually about to be at the centre of an international Ebola scare.

Finally, the captain confirmed on the loudspeaker that, among their number, was a woman who worked as a lab supervisor at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Fear of Ebola could be worse than Ebola itself.

Nassim Taleb: Here’s What People Don’t Understand About Ebola
Shane Ferro
Oct. 17, 2014, 4:43 PM

Multiplication — that’s what people don’t understand about Ebola, according to Nassim Taleb, the author of "Fooled by Randomness" and "The Black Swan."

More specifically, Taleb explained to Business Insider that many people talking about the disease don’t "have a grasp of the severity of the multiplicative process."

The argument that the US should be more worried about a disease like cancer — which has more stable rates of infection than Ebola does currently — is a logic that Taleb calls "the empiricism of the idiots."

The basic idea: The growth rate of Ebola infection is nonlinear, so the number of people catching it doubles every 20 days. Because of this, you have to act quickly at the source of infections, he says. "The closer you are to the source, the more effective you are at slowing it down … it is much more rational to prevent it now than later."

The problem Taleb sees is that if there is not more urgent action in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea — to the point of restricting travel and other measures that may now seem like an overreaction — then there will be consequences here.

"If you have to overreact about something, this is the place to overreact," he said.

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