Posted at 1:16 PM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

De-Dollarization Continues: China-Argentina Agree Currency Swap, Will Trade In Yuan
Tyler Durden on 09/07/2014 17:58 -0400

It appears there is another nation on planet Earth that is becoming isolated. One by one, Russia and China appear to be finding allies willing to ‘de-dollarize’; and the latest to join this trend is serial-defaulter Argentina. As Reuters reports, China and Argentina’s central banks have agreed a multi-billion dollar currency swap operation "to bolster Argentina’s foreign reserves" or "pay for Chinese imports with Yuan," as Argentina’s USD reserves dwindle. In addition, Argentina claims China supports the nation’s plans in the defaulted bondholder dispute.

Having met ‘on the sidelines’ in Basel, Switzerland in July, Argentine and Chinese central banks agreed to a currency swap equivalent to $11b that Cabinet Chief Jorge Capitanich said could be used to stabilize reserves.. (as Reuters reports)

Argentina, which defaulted on its debt in July, will receive the first tranche of a multi-billion dollar currency swap operation with China’s central bank before the end of this year, the South American country’s La Nacion newspaper reported on Sunday.

The swap will allow Argentina to bolster its foreign reserves or pay for Chinese imports with the yuan currency at a time weak export revenues and an ailing currency have put the Latin American nation’s foreign reserves under intense pressure.

More…

 

Obama Commits US to War against Russia in Defense of Baltic States
By Barry Grey
Global Research, September 08, 2014

In a series of speeches and press conferences in connection with last week’s NATO summit in Wales, President Barack Obama publicly declared that the United States military will maintain a permanent presence in the Baltic states of Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia, which border Russia. He vowed that US air and ground forces will remain poised forevermore to respond to claims of Russian aggression by the governments of these countries by attacking Moscow.

In appearances in the Estonian capital of Tallinn and later in Wales, Obama announced a series of military moves against Russia by the United States and NATO as well as expanded economic sanctions and pledges to bolster the military forces of the former Soviet republics of Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova. He made clear in addition that Washington will push for all three countries to join the US-dominated NATO military alliance.

These statements represent an immense escalation of US and NATO military threats against Russia. Without any public discussion, and entirely over the heads of the American people, the Obama administration has committed the country to go to war with the second largest nuclear power in the world over three small countries in Eastern Europe.

At a joint press conference September 3 with Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves, Obama declared, “So I’ve come here, first and foremost, to reaffirm the commitment of the United States to the security of Estonia. As NATO allies, we have Article 5 duties to our collective defense. That is a commitment that is unbreakable. It is unwavering. It is eternal.”

More…

Russian Strategic Bombers Near Canada Practice Cruise Missile Strikes on US
Nuclear launch rehearsal conducted in North Atlantic
Bill Gertz September 8, 2014 5:00 am

Two Russian strategic bombers conducted practice cruise missile attacks on the United States during a training mission last week that defense officials say appeared timed to the NATO summit in Wales.

The Russian Tu-95 Bear bombers were tracked flying a route across the northern Atlantic near Iceland, Greenland, and Canada’s northeast.

Analysis of the flight indicated the aircraft were conducting practice runs to a pre-determined “launch box”—an optimum point for firing nuclear-armed cruise missiles at U.S. targets, said defense officials familiar with intelligence reports.

Disclosure of the nuclear bombing practice comes as a Russian general last week called for Moscow to change its doctrine to include preemptive nuclear strikes on the United States and NATO.

Gen. Yuri Yakubov, a senior Defense Ministry official, was quoted by the state-run Interfax news agency as saying that Russia’s 2010 military doctrine should be revised to identify the United States and the NATO alliance as enemies, and clearly outline the conditions for a preemptive nuclear strike against them.

Yakubov said among other needed doctrinal changes, “it is necessary to hash out the conditions under which Russia could carry out a preemptive strike with the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces”—Moscow’s nuclear forces.

The practice bombing runs are the latest in a series of incidents involving threatening Russian bomber flights near the United States. Analysts say the bomber flights are nuclear saber-rattling by Moscow as a result of heightened tensions over the crisis in Ukraine.

More…

Posted at 1:14 PM (CST) by & filed under Jim's Mailbox.

Jim,

Do you think the message being given to the US is sinking in?

CIGA Larry

Russian Strategic Bombers Near Canada Practice Cruise Missile Strikes on US
Nuclear launch rehearsal conducted in North Atlantic
BY: Bill Gertz
September 8, 2014 5:00 am

Two Russian strategic bombers conducted practice cruise missile attacks on the United States during a training mission last week that defense officials say appeared timed to the NATO summit in Wales.

The Russian Tu-95 Bear bombers were tracked flying a route across the northern Atlantic near Iceland, Greenland, and Canada’s northeast.

Analysis of the flight indicated the aircraft were conducting practice runs to a pre-determined “launch box”—an optimum point for firing nuclear-armed cruise missiles at U.S. targets, said defense officials familiar with intelligence reports.

More…

Posted at 1:12 PM (CST) by & filed under USAWatchdog.com.

BY Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.  (Early Sunday Release)

Dear CIGAs,

Renowned economics professor Laurence Kotlikoff says SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corporation) is an insurance scam from Fraud Street.  Dr. Kotlikoff contends, “If you look at the history of their response as it’s been discovered, they (SIPC) have been fighting tooth and nail never to pay a dollar.  So, the situation is not that we don’t have any insurance for your brokerage account, it’s far worse. . . . There’s a Ponzi scheme discovered every four days, according to a recent New York Times article.  So, they can declare a fraud very easily.”  As an example, Dr. Kotlikoff gives someone who lost $2 million and is expecting to get back at least the SIPC insurance claim of $500,000, the maximum payout.  Instead of getting money back, SIPC expects money back from you!  Dr. Kotlikoff explains, “So, you are at double jeopardy here.  It’s not just that you can get totally screwed by a brokerage firm, which is happening every four days because a Ponzi scheme is being discovered, you can also be at great jeopardy by SIPC itself.”  Meaning, SIPC cannot only deny your claim, but it can sue you for any profits you made beyond your original investment if there are losses because of a fraudulent brokerage.  Dr. Kotlikoff adds, “So, they are running a complete insurance scam.  It’s a disgrace.  There is a bill in front of Congress that would correct this, but so far, members of Congress have not pushed it through.”

Dr. Kotlikoff goes on to say, “Earning a decent return on your investments is not being a winner; it’s just having a normal economic life.  That’s what you are supposed to do.  You are supposed to save and invest and enjoy the returns of your investments.  So, to be labeled a ‘winner’ and not be labeled a victim, and be told that your remaining balance is totally uninsured, and you have to pay back everything you took out over the last six years is disgraceful. . . . It’s also very, very dangerous.  Right now, nobody should have a brokerage account.  They should close them immediately and not spend your money for six years.  If you spend your money . . . they can sue you for every dollar of return, and that can be far beyond what you put in because of compound interest.  This is called a ‘net equity clawback,’and it’s a disgrace.”

Are any brokerages safe?  Dr. Kotlikoff says, “You are not safe in any of these companies. . . . You don’t know exactly what they are doing.  You don’t know if they are taking your securities and borrowing against them.  You may have signed something with fine print that allows them to hypothecate your securities, and then they could borrow money and put on a big bet . . . now, they lost all the money and the brokerage goes under.  That could be called a Ponzi scheme . . . anything can be called a Ponzi scheme.  Anybody who has a brokerage account should move their money out and contact their member of Congress and get them to pass this bill because it’s not going to be safe for anybody at any point in time to invest in a brokerage account unless this is changed. . . . The bill is called “Restoring Main Street Investor Protection and Confidence Act.”  SIPC has been engaged in such fraud that even the Securities and Exchange Commission has sued SIPC to get them to pay off the legitimate claims of the Stanford victims, the second largest Ponzi scheme after Madoff.”

More…

Posted at 6:06 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

John Williams shares the following with us.

- Payroll Jobs Growth Faltered in Context of Unusual Seasonal Factor Shifts
- August Unemployment Rate: 6.1% (U.3), 12.0% (U.6), 23.2% (ShadowStats)
- Downward Notch in Unemployment Rate Reflected Further Loss of Labor Force, Not the Unemployed Gaining Employment
- U.3 Rate Was Less than 979 Unemployed People Shy of Holding at 6.2%
- August 2014 Civilian Employment Still Shy of Pre-Recession Peak
- August Money Supply M3 at 4.7% Annual Growth

www.ShadowStats.com

Ukraine truce represents a triumph for Putin
Analysis: If the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk are left in rebel hands, then Vladimir Putin’s effort to freeze the conflict on his terms will be nearing success
By David Blair, Chief Foreign Correspondent
6:39PM BST 05 Sep 2014

The ceasefire agreement in eastern Ukraine represents not a retreat but a triumph for President Vladimir Putin.

Only a few weeks ago, his allies in the country seemed on the verge of defeat. The pro-Russian insurgents were losing town after town to a determined counter-offensive by Ukraine’s army.

After months of hesitation and setback, Ukrainian forces seemed close to recapturing the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk and crushing the rebellion. The insurgents faced the prospect of being surrounded and besieged in the two local capitals.

Then Mr Putin hit back, deploying at least 1,000 Russian combat troops in eastern Ukraine along with tanks, self-propelled artillery and other armoured vehicles. By striking over the border and advancing towards the port city of Mariupol, a Russian column opened a new front and drew Ukraine’s forces away from the last rebel strongholds.

At a stroke, Mr Putin’s intervention saved his friends from possible defeat. In the process, he forced Petro Poroshenko, the Ukrainian president, back to the negotiating table.

More…

Posted at 11:23 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim,

Regarding your posting today:

US to form ‘core coalition’ to fight Isis in Iraq
US secretary of state John Kerry rules out committing ‘boots on the ground’ at meeting of 10 nations on sidelines of Nato summit
Patrick Wintour
theguardian.com, Friday 5 September 2014 10.03 EDT

Offering military hardware and monetary support but no “boots on the ground” shows a lack of commitment.

Buying Democracy and Capitalism is no different than buying friendship – it doesn’t work.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

 

Jim,

Egon says the Gold Initiative to be voted on in Switzerland at the end of November would require the state to purchase upwards of 1,700 tons ($70billion) if it is voted into law.

That would decidedly have an upward effect on the price of gold.

CIGA Larry

Great Danger Looms As Investors Say Goodbye To Summer

Today a 42-year market veteran warned King World News that great danger now looms as investors say goodbye to summer and global trading enters the final few months of this year.  Below is what Egon von Greyerz, who is founder of Matterhorn Asset Management out of Switzerland, had to say in this fascinating interview.

Greyerz:  “Looking around the world it is astounding how investors are ignoring risk in their investment strategy. Global stock markets are in bubble territory, but the massive liquidity and the lemming mentality of investors have led to a total disregard of the risks that stocks represent today….

More…

Posted at 8:28 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

August Jobs Tumble To Only 142K, Lowest Monthly Print Of 2014 And Below Lowest Forecast; Unemployment Rate 6.1%
Tyler Durden on 09/05/2014 08:34 -0400

So much for the latest recovery: with not a single analyst expecting a NFP print below 190K, the BLS just reported that August payrolls tumbled from a revised 212K to only 142K, which was not only below the lowest Wall Street estimate of 190K, but it was also the the lowest monthly jobs print in all of 2014 and the biggest miss to expectations since the "polar vortex"! The Unemployment rate dripped modestly from 6.2% to 6.1% confirming yet again it has become a completely meaningless metric.

clip_image001

The visual data breakdown:

clip_image002

From the report:

In August, both the unemployment rate (6.1 percent) and the number of unemployed persons (9.6 million) changed little. Over the year, the unemployment rate and the number of unemployed persons were down by 1.1 percentage points and 1.7 million, respectively. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates in August showed little or no change for adult men (5.7 percent), adult women (5.7 percent), teenagers (19.6 percent), whites (5.3 percent), blacks (11.4 percent), and Hispanics (7.5 percent). The jobless rate for Asians was 4.5 percent (not seasonally adjusted), little changed from a year earlier. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) declined by 192,000 to 3.0 million in August. These individuals accounted for 31.2 percent of the unemployed. Over the past 12 months, the number of long-term unemployed has declined by 1.3 million. (See table A-12.)

More…

US to form ‘core coalition’ to fight Isis in Iraq
US secretary of state John Kerry rules out committing ‘boots on the ground’ at meeting of 10 nations on sidelines of Nato summit
Patrick Wintour
theguardian.com, Friday 5 September 2014 10.03 EDT

The US has announced it is forming a "core coalition" to battle Islamic State (Isis) in Iraq, and has given the new bloc two weeks to finalise plans to help the Baghdad authorities and the Kurds in the north intensify the fight against the militants.

Speaking at the Nato summit in Wales, the US secretary of state, John Kerry, said on Friday that the 10-nation coalition would concentrate on shoring up those in Iraq who were fighting against Isis, but said intervention would not extend to western powers sending in troops.

"We need to attack them in ways that prevent them from taking over territory, to bolster the Iraqi security forces and others in the region who are prepared to take them on, without committing troops of our own," Kerry told a meeting of the 10 nations that will form the coalition. "Obviously I think that’s a red line for everybody here: no boots on the ground."

He said the grouping should come up with firm plans by the time the UN general assembly meets for its annual session later this month.

More…

Cease-Fire Agreement for Eastern Ukraine Is Reached
By NEIL MacFARQUHAR
SEPT. 5, 2014

KIEV, Ukraine — Ukrainian government forces and the pro-Russan separatist rebels fighting them in eastern Ukraine will observe a cease-fire starting Friday, negotiators from all sides announced at a news conference in Minsk, Belarus.

However, the strength of the truce was immediately called into question by continued fighting around Mariupol, a port city in southeastern Ukraine.

Speaking from Minsk, negotiators representing the Ukrainian government, the separatists, Russia and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe said that the cease-fire was due to come into force at 6 p.m. local time.

President Petro O. Poroshenko of Ukraine confirmed in messages posted on Twitter that the there was agreement on a cease-fire protocol.

“The whole world is striving for peace, the whole of Ukraine is striving for peace, including millions of citizens in Donbass,” the posting said, referring to the region that includes the separatist strongholds.

“The highest value is human life, and we must do everything possible to stop the bloodshed and put an end to suffering,” the Twitter posting said.

More…

Posted at 11:55 AM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

The latest from John Williams.

- Neither Economic Boom nor Recovery Is Underway; Fundamentals Are Not in Place to Fuel or to Support Such a Circumstance 
- Latest Median Household Income Reading Confirmed Severely Impaired Consumer and Economy 
- Trade Deficit Continued to Widen Year-to-Year Despite Prior-Period Revisions and Unusual Seasonal Factors 
- Net of Inflation, Construction Spending Surge Was Stagnation

"No. 654: July Median Household Income, Trade Deficit, Construction Spending" 
Web-page: http://www.shadowstats.com?

 

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

What dramatic impact has interest rates had across the entire economy? None!

‘Worst Case’ BP Ruling on Gulf Spill Means Billions More in Penalties
By Margaret Cronin Fisk, Laurel Brubaker Calkins and Jef Feeley Sep 4, 2014 6:18 PM MT

BP Plc acted with gross negligence in setting off the biggest offshore oil spill in U.S. history, a federal judge ruled, handing down a long-awaited decision that may force the energy company to pay billions of dollars more for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico disaster.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier held a trial without a jury over who was at fault for the catastrophe, which killed 11 people and spewed oil for almost three months into waters that touch the shores of five states.

“BP has long maintained that it was merely negligent,” said David Uhlmann, former head of the Justice Department’s environmental crimes division. He said Barbier “soundly rejected” BP’s arguments that others were equally responsible, holding “that its employees took risks that led to the largest environmental disaster in U.S. history.”

The case also included Transocean Ltd. (RIG) and Halliburton Co. (HAL), though the judge didn’t find them as responsible for the spill as BP. Barbier wrote in his decision today in New Orleans federal court that BP was “reckless,” while Transocean and Halliburton were negligent. He apportioned fault at 67 percent for BP, 30 percent for Transocean and 3 percent for Halliburton.

More…

The Battle For Strategic Mariupol Begins As NATO Vows To Do "Whatever It Takes"
Tyler Durden on 09/04/2014 09:19 -0400

Shelling is reported to have started on the eastern outskirts of Mariupol, Ukraine, according to local reporters on social media. This crucial city, due to its standing as the last major city standing in the way of a land connection to Crimea (from Russia) across the Southern border. Furthermore, Mariupol’s strategic importance as a port and major industrial city is crucial to Kiev who are reinforcing the city after losing Novoazovsk last week, with the Ukrainian army on full alert. NATO has been actively sabre-rattling this morning, pulling a full Draghi by threatening to do "whatever it takes" to defend ourselves and our allies, and offering training and support for Ukraine (as they report over 3,000 Russian troops in Ukraine). Escalation?

Shelling on the outskirts of Mariupol #Ukraine

— Simon Ostrovsky (@SimonOstrovsky) September 4, 2014

UKRAINIAN ARMY ON TOP ALERT NEAR PORT CITY OF MARIUPOL, READY TO REPULSE POSSIBLE ATTACK BY REBELS – MILITARY SOURCE – RTRS

clip_image001

More…

Japan imposes sanctions against Russia under US pressure — Tokyo Governor
September 04, 18:58 UTC+4

TOMSK, September 04. /ITAR-TASS/. Japan has imposed sanctions against Russia under pressure from the United States, Tokyo Governor Yoichi Masuzoe told journalists in Tomsk, which is hosting the summit of the heads of Asian cities, on Thursday.

The governor said Japan was very dependent on the US in security issues.

“We have problems related to China, North and South Korea. That is why we need to rely on the US military potential,” Yoichi Masuzoe said, adding he wanted the Russians to understand what stood behind Japan’s decision to impose sanctions against Russia.

The governor also pledged to exert maximum efforts to improve bilateral relations between Russia and Japan.

On August 5, the Japanese Foreign Ministry published the names of 40 individuals and two organizations that fell under the Japan government-approved sanctions against Russia. The sanctions list includes Crimean officials, representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics; as well as two Crimean companies – Chernomorneftegaz and the Feodosiya oil base. Japan has also banned all imports of goods produced in Crimea.

Japan imposed the first round of sanctions against Russia on March 18, the day when Crimea officially reunited with Russia. It suspended consultations with Russia on possible facilitation of the visa regime and postponed the conclusion of three treaties with Russia – on investment cooperation, cooperation in space exploration and prevention of dangerous military activity.

More…

Western sanctions prompt Russia to turn east in search partners
September 04, 17:02 UTC+4

MOSCOW, September 04. /ITAR-TASS/. The US-led anti-Russian campaign over the crisis in Ukraine has prompted Moscow to turn east in search of new partners. In the Asia-Pacific Region, experts say, Russia is likely to find quite a few countries eager to establish or expand strategic cooperation.

Firstly, there is China, with whom Russia has concluded a 30-year multi-billion contract for laying the Power of Siberia oil pipeline. Within the framework of the same project Mongolia on Wednesday expressed the wish to compete with Kazakhstan for the right to transit Russian gas to China. On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin on the occasion of the 69th anniversary of Vietnam’s independence voiced the certainty about comprehensive strategic partnership for the sake of ensuring stability and security in the Asia-Pacific Region.

“In any case putting all eggs into one European basket is no longer possible. Alongside attempts to come to terms with the West Russia should build up its efforts tenfold to tap Siberia’s potential anew and to devise a new Asian economic and political strategy. Faster, large-scale development of Russia’s vast Asian expanses – Siberia and the Far East – should be the focus of a new national comprehensive strategy in Asia,” the dean of the world economy and world politics department at the Higher School of Economics, Sergey Karaganov, has told ITAR-TASS.

“Russia has realized the potential benefits of Asian markets. Many are getting aware the surest way to access there is through industrial production and supplies of energy and energy-intensive products, raw materials and high value added semi-finished products to the Asian markets,” said Karaganov, the honorary president of the Foreign and Defense Policy Council.

“Russia will be able to achieve a higher technological level and strengthen its sovereignty by teaming up with Asian manufacturers, first and foremost, those in China, and also in South Korea, and, possibly, Japan, Singapore for joint projects to manufacture high-tech products, such as civilian aircraft, nuclear power reactors, oil and gas production equipment, ships and armaments,” Karaganov believes.

More…

Russian General Demands Preemptive Nuclear Strike Doctrine Against NATO
Tyler Durden on 09/04/2014 15:07 -0400

While NATO is contemplating its existential purpose in a world where the Cold War has suddenly come back with a vengeance, and the military alliance has found itself woefully unprepared to deal with a Russia which no longer accepts the supremacy of the west (appropriately enough doing all of this on a golf course), Russia is also strategizing, only instead of issuing "sharply-worded catchphrases" and hashtags, a Russian general has called for Russia to revamp its military doctrine, last updated in 2010, to clearly identify the U.S. and its NATO allies as Moscow’s enemy number one. That in itself is not disturbing: we reported as much yesterday and is merely more rhetorical posturing. Where things, however, get very problematic is that the general demands that Russia spell out the conditions under which the country would launch a preemptive nuclear strike against the 28-member military alliance.

Moscow Times reports that Russia’s military doctrine, a strategy document through which the government interprets military threats and crafts possible responses, is being revised in light of threats connected to the Arab Spring, the Syrian civil war and the conflict in Ukraine, the deputy chief of the Kremlin’s security council told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.

That however is the soundbite for politically correct media purposes. Because within the Defense Ministry there are voices calling for different priorities.

More…

‘Promoting peace and stability’: NATO warships enter Black Sea
Published time: September 04, 2014 15:09

A US Navy destroyer and, reportedly, a French frigate have entered the Black Sea, as NATO builds up its presence in the region while tensions remain high in Ukraine. Another two warships are expected to arrive in the area by the end of the week.

The US Navy 6th Fleet official command has confirmed on its official Twitter account that the destroyer USS Ross, (DDG 71), an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, is now in the Black Sea.

“USS Ross enters Black Sea, promoting peace and stability while working with NATO allies and partners,” a statement said.

The US Navy has stressed that “the Ross’ presence in the Black Sea serves to demonstrate the United States’ commitment to strengthening the collective security of NATO allies and partners in the region.”

“The US Navy maintains an enduring commitment to forward-presence throughout the region in order to have ready-forces available if a crisis were to occur,” the statement said.

More…

Posted at 11:08 AM (CST) by & filed under Jim's Mailbox.

Jim,

The world’s Central Banks have made it perfectly clear. To stave off the ever downward spiraling economies, they will print money faster than Scott’s can print toilet paper.

They’ve tried printing gold (vis a vis the Comex) but the new Asian Gold Exchanges have put the kibosh on that!

clip_image001

"Venezuelans queue in Caracas to buy toilet paper. Last week the government announced an emergency shipment to boost supplies. Photograph: Jorge Silva/Reuters"

Soon this will be the currency of choice in the US.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

ECB Cuts 10 Basis Points Across The Board
By Kitco News
Thursday September 4, 2014 7:45 AM

(Kitco News) – After introducing negative interest rates in May, the ECB has cut interest rates again.

The central bank cut the rate on its main refinancing operation by 10 basis points to 0.05%; its marginal lending facility rate was cut 10 basis points to 0.30%, and its deposit facility was also dropped 10 basis points to negative 0.20%.

According to some analysts, markets were almost evenly split, expecting that the central bank would cut interest rates by 10 basis points. The ECB not only has to stimulate growth but stave off growing deflationary concerns. On Friday Eurostats, the European Union’s statistical agency, reported that August’s  inflation hit 0.3%, a five year low, down from 0.4% in July. Inflation remains well below the central bank’s target of 2.0%.

More…