Jim’s Mailbox

Posted at 6:58 PM (CST) by & filed under Jim's Mailbox.

Compliments of JB.


Meet the $4 Trillion Market that Donald Trump Just Bitch-Slapped
October 5, 2017

According to Federal Reserve statistics, as of the end of the first quarter of this year, the U.S. municipal bond market consisted of $3.8 trillion of debt outstanding with retail investors owning 42 percent of the market. Life insurance companies, property and casualty insurers, banks, mutual funds and foreign buyers are also major holders of municipal bonds.

Municipal bonds have performed well as a class over a century of booms and busts. They came through the Great Depression with an extremely low default rate. General obligation municipal bonds (GOs) are backed by the full faith and credit and taxing power of a jurisdiction like a state or county or city and GOs with AAA ratings are typically viewed as second in safety to issues of the U.S. government. Municipal bonds issued to finance a project are classified as revenue bonds and are frequently backed just by the revenues of that project, such as a toll bridge.

U.S. states, counties, cities and school districts issue muni bonds to build schools, roads, bridges and other critical infrastructure needs. Municipal bonds are essential to a vibrant U.S. economy and maintaining modern infrastructure and schools across America.

Heretofore, it has been unthinkable that holders of general obligation municipal bonds could be “wiped out” by edict. But during his visit to Puerto Rico on Tuesday, President Donald Trump was interviewed by Geraldo Rivera of Fox News. The interview was broadcast during the Sean Hannity program Tuesday evening. The president stated the following: (See video clip below.)


Courtesy of JB.


Saudis Rock US Alliance, Say They’ll Buy Russia’s Top Plane Killer, S-400
October 05, 2017

WASHINGTON: That rumble under your feet you sensed this morning was the earthquake caused by the decision of one of America’s closest allies, Saudis Arabia, to join Turkey in buying Russia’s vaunted S-400 surface to air missile system.

The announcement carried extra diplomatic weight as Saudi King Salman was visiting Russia when the Saudis made the announcement.

Former NATO and European Command leader, retired Adm. James Stavridis, called the sale “a step backwards in US foreign and defense policy.” Since World War II, when President Roosevelt agreed with King Faisal that we would guarantee Saudi sovereignty in return for access to their oil, the kingdom has been one of our closest allies, notwithstanding the 911 attacks led by Saudi citizens.

“While the enormous global arms market is a free trade zone, it is disconcerting to see close US Allies like Turkey and Saudi Arabia buying significant systems like the S-400 air defense from Russia,” Stavridis, now the dean of the Fletcher School of law and Diplomacy, writes in an email. “It decreases interoperability, opens up cyber vulnerabilities, exposes additional real intelligence to Russia, and reduces the tendency of the US to truly open its technology transfer process to partners.”

While Stavridis, long known as a warrior-diplomat, does not say it explicitly, his comment about tech transfer is seminal. Should Saudi Arabia proceed with this sale, it may lead to the United States deciding not to sell advanced command and control systems or aircraft to them. Why? Fear that the Russians could get access to highly classified data about our systems’ vulnerabilities.


Just one more coincidence since the major sun explosion. Compliments of JB.


Nate To Threaten US Gulf Coast As A Hurricane This Weekend
October 05, 2017

Nate will threaten part of the southern United States as a hurricane this weekend with flooding, strong winds and isolated tornadoes.

Since Nate will be moving inland over the U.S. this weekend, people may have little time to react and prepare for a tropical storm or hurricane.

Where is Nate likely to come ashore?


“Nate will move northward over the central Gulf of Mexico on Saturday and make landfall along the U.S. upper Gulf coast on Sunday,” according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Rossio.

Nate is likely to make landfall somewhere from the Florida Panhandle to southeastern Louisiana. The exact point of landfall will be determined once the storm begins to move north of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.