Jim Sinclair’s Commentary
Where gold is concerned as it travels it path to the physical market, China and Russia will set the price.
China wants to set prices for the world’s commodities
China has put the world’s traditional financial centers on notice that it wants to develop its raw material markets as hubs for setting prices, seeking to marry the country’s commercial heft with a much greater say in determining how much commodities cost.
“We’re facing a chance of a lifetime to become a global pricing center for commodities,” Fang Xinghai, vice chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, said at the Shanghai Futures Exchange’s annual conference in the city on Wednesday. “On the way to realize this goal, we’ll see very intense competition. We have the advantage of trading size and economic growth, but our legislation is still not sound and we lack enough talent.”
China is the world’s largest user of metals and energy, but its traders and companies rely on financial centers outside the country — typically London and New York — to set benchmark prices for most of the commodities they handle and consume. While raw materials trading in the nation remains largely off-limits to overseas investors — who also face currency restrictions — China has long pledged to open up. Fang vowed to press on with that process, while also seeing tough challenges from rival centers as it does so.
“We plan to use crude oil, iron ore and natural rubber futures as the starting point in our efforts to open the domestic market to more foreign investors,” Fang told the audience. China shouldn’t underestimate “the determination of current pricing centers to maintain their status,” he said.
Jim Sinclair’s Commentary
The Fed and talking heads see a solid economic recovery demanding higher interest rates. What planet are they referring to?
Goodbye, empty nest: Millennials staying longer with parents
For millennials, living with parents is now most common arrangement for first time on record
By Christopher s. Rugaber
WASHINGTON (AP) — Many of America’s young adults appear to be in no hurry to move out of their old bedrooms.
For the first time on record, living with parents is now the most common arrangement for people ages 18 to 34, an analysis of census data by the Pew Research Center has found.
And the proportion of older millennials — those ages 25 to 34 — who are living at home has reached its highest point (19 percent) on record, Pew analysts said.
Nearly one-third of all millennials live with their parents, slightly more than the proportion who live with a spouse or partner. It’s the first time that living at home has outpaced living with a spouse for this age group since such record-keeping began in 1880.
The remaining young adults are living alone, with other relatives, in college dorms, as roommates or under other circumstances.
The sharp shift reflects a long-running decline in marriage, amplified by the economic upheavals of the Great Recession. The trend has been particularly evident among Americans who lack a college degree.
The pattern may be a contributing factor in the sluggish growth of the U.S. economy, which depends heavily on consumer spending. With more young people living with their parents rather than on their own, fewer people need to buy appliances, furniture or cable subscriptions. The recovery from the 2008-09 recession has been hobbled by historically low levels of home construction and home ownership.
Jennifer Post, 26, has been living with her parents in Villas, New Jersey, since dropping out of law school two years ago.
A law career wasn’t a good fit for her, Post decided, and now she’s seeking a job in digital media or marketing. There aren’t many opportunities in Villas, a beach town.
Even living at home, she said it’s been hard to save for a move to a bigger city after she was laid off from a baking job in March.
Bill Holter’s Commentary
…and people give me a hard time for using a brontosaurus age flip phone?
US military uses 8-inch floppy disks to coordinate nuclear force operations
Maybe they use the ’80s flick “War Games” as a training film, too.
The U.S. Defense Department is still using — after several decades — 8-inch floppy disks in a computer system that coordinates the operational functions of the nation’s nuclear forces, a jaw-dropping new report reveals.
The Defense Department’s 1970s-era IBM Series/1 Computer and long-outdated floppy disks handle functions related to intercontinental ballistic missiles, nuclear bombers and tanker support aircraft, according to the new Government Accountability Office report.
The department’s outdated “Strategic Automated Command and Control System” is one of the 10 oldest information technology investments or systems detailed in the sobering GAO report, which calls for a number of federal agencies “to address aging legacy systems.”
The report shows that creaky IT systems are being used to handle important functions related to the nation’s taxpayers, federal prisoners and military veterans, as well as to the U.S. nuclear umbrella.