In The News Today

Posted at 8:18 PM (CST) by & filed under In The News.

Dear Friends,

Please watch the following video of the Pakistani Taliban threatening a massive attack on the White House in Washington, DC.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/story/2009/03/31/ST2009033101628.html

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

More help for the dollar from one of its Friends

Chavez to seek Arab backing for `petro-currency’
By BRIAN MURPHY, Associated Press Writer 

DOHA, Qatar – Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez sought Arab support Tuesday for a proposed oil-backed currency to challenge the U.S. dollar in his latest swipe at Washington’s dominance in global financial affairs.

It’s highly unlikely Chavez will gain any serious momentum for his "petro-currency" proposal at a summit of South American and Arab League leaders, but it represented another attempt to undercut the dollar’s standing as the world’s leading commercial currency.

China has struck deals — most recently this week with Argentina — to conduct trade in currencies other than the dollar. Iran has proposed replacing the dollar with the euro or other currencies to set worldwide oil prices.

Chavez plans to visit both Iran and China following the one-day Qatar gathering, whose agenda focuses on trade issues but also touches on Arab worries about rival Iran’s growing influence in Latin America.

Key oil-producing members of the Arab League, such as Saudi Arabia and Gulf states, have close ties to Washington and will almost certainly reject any plan to shun the dollar. But the summit kicks off another high-profile foreign trip for Chavez in his efforts to build economic and diplomatic links to confront the United States.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

It can get lonely when holding onto your gold lifeline as the propaganda, lies and misinterpretations are thrown at you from every corner.

Remember, all of us at JSMineset stand with you. You are not alone.

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=2539741

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Guess Who Did It?

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Tell these people that the economy has bottomed.

ADP Says U.S. Companies Reduced Payrolls by 742,000 (Update2)
By Bob Willis

April 1 (Bloomberg) — Companies in the U.S. cut an estimated 742,000 workers in March, pointing to no relief in sight for the labor market amid the longest recession in seven decades, a private report based on payroll data showed today.

The drop in the ADP Employer Services gauge was larger than economists forecast and the most since records began in 2001. February’s reading was revised to show cut of 706,000 workers, up from a previous estimate of 697,000.

Companies are slashing staff as tight credit conditions and shrinking household wealth cause sales to shrink. The Labor Department may report in two days that employers cut payrolls in March for a 15th consecutive month, putting jobs losses in the current downturn at more than 5 million, according to a Bloomberg survey.

“The weakness is distributed across all components of the economy,” Joel Prakken, chairman of Macroeconomic Advisers LLC in St. Louis, said in a conference call. “We are going to see several more months of serious bleeding before we see lesser job losses.”

The ADP report was forecast to show a decline of 663,000 jobs, according to the median estimate of 30 economists in a Bloomberg News survey. Projections were for decreases ranging from 525,000 to 750,000.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

So very few have given consideration to the geopolitical domino effect Pakistan’s transmission to Taliban control infers:

Insurgents threaten Pakistan’s ‘existence’: US general

WASHINGTON (AFP) — Islamist insurgents pose a growing threat not only to Afghanistan but to Pakistan’s "very existence," the commander of US forces in the region, General David Petraeus, said on Wednesday.

"The Pakistani military has stepped up operations" against the militants but more action was needed, Petraeus told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked groups based near the Afghan border represent "an ever more serious threat to Pakistan’s very existence," he said.

The chief of US Central Command said "the situation in Pakistan is closely linked to that of Afghanistan" and praised a new strategy unveiled last week by President Barack Obama for the Afghan war as a "comprehensive" approach.

Describing the challenges of the US mission in Afghanistan, Petraeus said there would be no quick victory and that it would require "a sustained substantial commitment" after more than seven years of war.

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

My answer is absolutely no. No, because there is no recovery to blot out in the first place. This recovery is a statistical construct at this point.

Will the Dark Cloud of Commercial Real Estate Blot Out the U.S. Recovery?
[Editor’s Note: This is the first of a two-part look at how the U.S. real estate market will affect the nation’s economic recovery. Today’s focus: Commercial real estate. Next week: The residential rebound.]
By William Patalon III
Executive Editor
Money Morning/The Money Map Report

Stock prices have rallied for much of last month. The housing market has shown some early signs of life. And some of the latest economic reports haven’t been the disasters that many experts feared.

While this is hardly a portrait of an economy on a roll, there are enough bright spots to nurture a feeling that the U.S. economy is finally on a path to recovery – especially given the upbeat response the latest elements of the Obama administration’s fix-it plans have received.

But there’s a dark cloud in this picture. And it’s big – big enough, in fact, to potentially finish off the U.S. banking sector, blotting out the U.S. economy’s new dawn.

That dark cloud is the commercial real estate sector. With rent prices falling and vacancies rising due to the recession-weakened economy, delinquencies on commercial mortgages are already escalating steeply.  And the credit crunch bred from the recession is often making it impossible for property owners to avoid deeper trouble by refinancing.

"It’s a one-two punch combination: First, soaring vacancies take the wind out of positive cash flow; then the credit crisis hits like a rabbit punch, snapping off the main arteries to refinancing," says Money Morning Contributing Editor Shah Gilani, a retired hedge-fund manager and expert on the U.S. credit crisis who predicted the implosion of the commercial real estate sector several years ago. "This is like Samson hitting the ground. The giant asset class we call commercial real estate is not going to get up any time soon."

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

Home sales:

Keep in mind that when a home is foreclosed on it shows as a sale of that home due to the deed transfer. A foreclosure of a partially or fully completed building project will book as the sale of a new home as the product of a deed transfer of a home not resided in. Bank liquidations at auction of either will show as a sale of that home again due to the deed transfer according to definition of the deed.

Don’t expect this definition when homes sales are released.

 

Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

There was a time I wrote off the Russian professor’s prediction that the US would break down into separate independent groups of states. I still do, but with less intensity because I have to admit that there are currents right now of Rebellion against Washington.

The pushback against federal power began under Bush, but may now be accelerating.
By Patrik Jonsson | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
from the March 27, 2009 edition

Atlanta – There’s an old joke in South Carolina: Confederate President Jefferson Davis may have surrendered at the Burt-Stark mansion in Abbeville, S.C., in 1865, but the people of state Rep. Michael Pitts’s district never did.

With revolutionary die-hards behind him, Mr. Pitts has fired a warning shot across the bow of the Washington establishment. As the writer of one of 28 state "sovereignty bills" – one even calls for outright dissolution of the Union if Washington doesn’t rein itself in – Pitts is at the forefront of a states’ rights revival, reasserting their say on everything from stem cell research to the Second Amendment.

"Washington can be a bully, but there’s evidence right now that there are people willing to resist our bully," said Pitts, by phone from the state capitol of Columbia.

Just as California under President Bush asserted itself on issues ranging from gun control to medical marijuana, a motley cohort of states – from South Carolina to New Hampshire, from Washington State to Oklahoma – are presenting a foil for President Obama’s national ambitions. And they’re laying the groundwork for a political standoff over the 10th Amendment, which cedes all power not granted to Washington to the people.

The movement’s success will largely depend on whether Washington sees these legislative insurgents as serious – or, as Pitts puts it, as just "a bunch of rednecks."

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

I like the slogan of the demonstrators. April 1st is Financial Fools Day. Seems appropriate…

The G20 protests in central London turned violent today ahead of tomorrow’s summit, with a band of demonstrators close to the Bank of England storming a Royal Bank of Scotland branch, and baton-wielding police charging a sit-down protest by students.

G20 protests: riot police clash with demonstrators

Much of the protesting, from an estimated 4,000 people in the financial centre of the capital, was peaceful, but some bloody skirmishes broke out as police tried to keep thousands of people in containment pens surrounding the Bank of England on Threadneedle Street.

A minority of demonstrators seemed determined to cause damage, seeking confrontation as they surged towards police lines. Late tonight, much of the City remained cordoned off.

By about 8pm, running battles between riot police and demonstrators were taking place across London Bridge. Bottles, sticks and bricks were thrown.

Nearer the heart of the City, police moved in to break up a ‘climate camp’ on Bishopsgate, with baton-wielding officers said to be pushing through a line of tents and bicycles. At least five armoured police vehicles were also at the scene.

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