Posts Categorized: In The News

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

How does record global debt get serviced with dwindling cash flow generated by contracting trade?

Latest Freight Data Confirms Alarming Slowdown In Global Trade
August 25, 2018

While the US stock market and economy continue to remain stubbornly immune to the ongoing trade war, the same can not be said for global trade as observed and measured by world freight shipping and volumes. According to the latest Goldman freight data, there has been a gradual slowing in global trade since 4Q17, and the July readings suggest an alarming continuation, and in some cases acceleration, of this trend.

The deceleration has closely tracked a tightening in global financial conditions, particularly evident in EM data, which in turn has largely been a manifestation of the ongoing escalation in trade tensions between the US and China.

Indeed, the implementation of the first round of US-China tariffs in early July may also have had an impact: US West Coast inbound port volumes were -1% in July (5% in 1H), while Chinese ports’ throughput growth slowed to 2% (6% in 1H), worse than implied by the close historical correlation with Chinese export orders. At the same time, air cargo growth at Europe’s key hubs turned negative (-2%) in July, with weakness cited on Asia-Europe. Looking forward, global manufacturing export orders in June/July were consistent with slightly positive, albeit slowing growth.

Breaking down freight by segment, here are some observations from a recent Goldman report:

Sea & air freight (volume growth positive, momentum negative): Freight datapoints have indicated a deceleration in growth since 4Q17. July data appears to have stabilised in Sea, with volumes growing c.3% in line with June, while Air freight growth has decelerated further; e.g. EU airport cargo -2% yoy from 1% in 1H, 7% in 2017.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

Do you understand what this means? If not, you need to immediately!

Italy Threatens To Stop EU Funding Unless Other States Accept Refugees
August 23, 2018

Europe’s refugee mess is back with a bang.

On Thursday, out of the blue, Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio threatened to stop financial contributions to the European Union next year unless other states agreed to take in migrants being held on a coastguard ship in Sicily. The Italian’s ultimatum comes less two months after Europe triumphantly announced a “vaguely worded” deal on how to resolve the continent’s migrant influx.

“If tomorrow at the meeting of the European Commission nothing is decided on the redistribution of migrants and the Diciotti ship, I and the entire Five Star Movement are not willing to give 20 billion to the European Union,” Di Maio said in a video posted on his Facebook page.

He echoed statements by Interior Minister and Deputy Premier Matteo Salvini, who has refused to allow 177 migrants to leave the Italian coastguard ship Ubaldo Diciotti, which is docked in the Sicilian port of Catania. While Italian prosecutors opened an investigation into the detention of the migrants and 29 children were allowed to disembark, Salvini still won’t allow the rest of the people to come ashore and has attacked the EU for its “cowardly silence.”

Salvini described those aboard as “illegal immigrants,” and said they won’t be allowed to step foot on Italian soil. Instead, he insisted fellow European Union nations take in some of the asylum-seekers.

“Italy’s no longer Europe’s refugee camp,” he tweeted. “Upon my authorization, no one is disembarking from the Diciotti.”

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

You do see the mathematical impossibility of this long term, don’t you?

52.1% of Kids Live in Households Getting Means-Tested Government Assistance
August 22, 2018

Will they be called The Welfare Generation?

Today, they are Americans under 18 years of age growing up in a country where the majority of their peers live in households that take “means-tested assistance” from the government.

In 2016, according to the most recent data from the Census Bureau, there were approximately 73,586,000 people under 18 in the United States, and 38,365,000 of them — or 52.1 percent — resided in households in which one or more persons received benefits from a means-tested government program.

These included the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps), Medicaid, public housing, Supplemental Security Income, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and the National School Lunch Program.

The Census Bureau published its data on the number and percentage of persons living in households that received means-tested government assistance in its Current Population Survey Detailed Tables for Poverty.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

A shitty job but someone has to do it…for $185k per year!

San Francisco “Poop Patrollers” Make $185,000
August 23, 2018

We wish we could say this was a satire piece, but a new story in the San Francisco Chronicle reveals just how lucrative collecting shit actually is.

It’s but the latest in a string of shocking revelations to hit headlines throughout the summer exposing how deep San Francisco’s crisis of vast amounts of vagrant-generated feces covering its public streets actually runs (no pun intended).

We detailed last week how city authorities have finally decided to do something after thousands of feces complaints (during only one week in July, over 16,000 were recorded), the cancellation of a major medical convention and an outraged new Mayor, London Breed, who was absolutely shocked after walking through her city: they established a professional “poop patrol”.

As described when the city initially unveiled the plan, the patrol will consist of a team of five staffers and a supervisor donning protective gear and patrolling the alleys around Polk Street and other “brown zones” in search of everything from hepatitis-laden Hershey squirts to worm-infested-logs. At the Poop Patrol’s disposal will be a special vehicle equipped with a steam cleaner and disinfectant.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

Keep thinking “it could never happen here”…mathematically it will happen in current dollar terms!

10 Pictures Reveal The Huge Amounts Of Cash Venezuelans Need To Buy Everyday Things
August 20, 2018

In a plan designed to tackle hyperinflation, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Friday announced plans to raise his country’s minimum wage and create a single exchange rate pegged to his government’s petro-backed cryptocurrency, effectively devaluing the country’s currency by 96%, Reuters reported.

Venezuelans rushed to shops Friday to stock up on goods before the monetary overhaul – which will remove five zeros from prices – took effect.

Hyperinflation has meant piles of cash are needed to buy basic products. Images by Reuters show the daily realities of the crisis.

A kilogram of tomatoes costs about 5 million bolívars, or $0.76.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

What do you suppose this will mean?

Gold Output In Key Countries To Slump To ‘Generational’ Lows — Report
August 23, 2018

Gold output in key producing countries, such as Australia and Peru, is set to slump to generational lows in the mid-term even though bullion production grew for nine consecutive years, reaching an all-time high in 2017, a new report shows.

While S&P Global Market Intelligence does expect output to rise reach new highs this year, to 108 million ounces, as well as in 2019 and 2020, it doesn’t see growth across the board.

“In the case of Australia, despite production being on track to hit a 26-year high of 10.2 Moz in 2019, we estimate that Australian gold production will start to decline thereafter,” says S&P analyst Chris Galbraith.

In its the Gold Pipeline report, S&P forecasts a 9% fall in gold production for Australia in 2020 and expects the country’s production to reach a generational low of 6.8 million ounces by 2022. That is a 33% drop in only three years.

Peruvian production is also expected to decline the most by 2022 — by 1.9 million ounces to be exact. This, as no new gold mines have begun production in the country since the start of 2017, and only one project seems likely to go online in the next five years: Southern Copper’s Los Chancas, slated to begin operations in 2022

Canada, however, is highlighted as one of the few countries where gold output will continue to increase by potentially 62% above 2017 production.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

Think this one through folks, this is GERMANY calling for a switch from the dollar system! Do not wait until the switch is complete to protect yourselves, it will be too late at that point!

Germany Calls For Global Payment System Independent Of The US
August 22, 2018

In a stunning vote of “no confidence” in the US monopoly over global payment infrastructure, Germany’s foreign minister Heiko Maas called for the creation of a new payments system independent of the US that would allow Brussels to be independent in its financial operations from Washington and as a means of rescuing the nuclear deal between Iran and the west.

Writing in the German daily Handelsblatt, Maas said “Europe should not allow the US to act over our heads and at our expense. For that reason it’s essential that we strengthen European autonomy by establishing payment channels that are independent of the US, creating a European Monetary Fund and building up an independent Swift system,” he wrote, cited by the FT.

Maas said it was vital for Europe to stick with the Iran deal. “Every day the agreement continues to exist is better than the highly explosive crisis that otherwise threatens the Middle East,” he said, with the unspoken message was even clearer: Europe no longer wants to be a vassal state to US monopoly over global payments, and will now aggressively pursue its own “Swift” network that is not subservient to Washington’s every whim.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

If true, this is VERY interesting!

Fusion GPS Spy Natalia Veselnitskaya Worked Out Of Obama Official’s Office
August 20, 2018

(Big League Politics) – The Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya who set up Don Trump Jr. for a meeting in Trump Tower as part of a Fusion GPS plot was operating out of the Washington offices of Cozen O’Connor, a law firm run by an anti-Trump former Obama administration official whose super PAC donated to Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush in the 2016 presidential election.

Veselnitskaya’s work from the Cozen O’Connor office provides more evidence of a Democrat and establishment Republican effort to set up the Trump campaign for a future Russian collusion case. Veselnitskaya was allowed into the United States by the Obama Department of Justice while the former Obama official who runs Cozen O’Connor publicly warned then-candidate Trump that if he became president he would be investigated by the DOJ for contacts with foreign leaders. Veselnitskaya reportedly had dinner meetings with Fusion GPS chief Glenn Simpson the day before she met in Trump Tower and also the day after she went inside Trump Tower.

Big League Politics has confirmed that a Cozen O’Connor partner who lives in the same apartment building as James Comey’s friend Daniel Richman — who leaked classified information to the press on Comey’s behalf — spoke with Richman during the period that Comey and the Fusion GPS team were trying to obtain FISA warrants on Trump Tower.

Let’s break down the facts of an Obama administration official’s involvement in the Trump Tower plot:

Russian and U.S. citizen Rinat Akhmetshin, a Soviet military veteran, was present at Veselnitskaya’s meeting with Don Jr. in Trump Tower after leading a lobbying push supposedly to repeal the Magnitsky Act. Akhmestshin is believed by insiders to be linked to Russian government intelligence, a fact that the Washington Post seized on when reporting that he met with Don Jr. and Jared Kushner in Trump Tower. A nonprofit group focused on promoting Akhmetshin and Veselnitskaya’s cause to lawmakers actually hired Cozen O’Connor, which the law firm confirms.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

It is always volume that goes first, followed by price…

Luxury Apartment Sales Plummet in New York City
August 20, 2018

Sales of the most expensive New York apartments fell sharply in the first half of the year, but many sellers have adjusted by cutting asking prices to make deals, brokers said.

“This is simply a market that is adjusting itself to chronic overpricing relative to buyers’ perception of value,” said Kirk Henckels, a broker and vice chairman of Stribling & Associates, a New York-based brokerage.

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Bill Holter’s Commentary

Please show this to your snowflake socialist friends (and family?). This is mathematically how socialism ends…and fiat currencies for that matter!

Venezuela Slashes 5 Zeros From Currency In “One Of Greatest Devaluations Ever”
August 20, 2018

As previewed yesterday, on Monday Venezuela officially slashed five zeros from prices and its currency as part of what has been dubbed one of the greatest currency devaluations in history which slashed the value of the official bolivar by 95%, an overhaul that President Nicolas Maduro said would tame hyperinflation, and which everyone else called the latest desperate failed socialist policy that will push the chaotic country deeper into crisis and unleash even higher hyperinflation (impossible as that may sound: as a reminder the collapse of Venezuela’s currency recently surpassed the Weimar republic).

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Jim Sinclair’s Commentary

The latest from John Williams’’ www.shadowstats.com

– Recent Sizzle Has Fizzled
– Financial-Market and Economic Prospects Remain Far Shy of the Hype and Headlines, Amidst Tanking Consumer Optimism and Negative Revisions to Recent Reporting
– July 2018 Real Retail Sales Unchanged Net of Downside Revisions to May and June
– July Housing Starts and Components Revised Lower, with Deepening Downtrends and Quarterly Contractions
– New Residential Construction Activity Held Shy of Recovering Pre-Recession Highs: July Housing Starts by 49.1% (-49.1%), Single-Unit Starts by 53.2% (-53.2%), Multiple-Unit Starts by 32.4% (-32.4%), Building Permits by 42.1% (-42.1%)
– July Manufacturing Showed a Modest Increase on Top of Upside Revisions, Still Holding Shy by 5.0% (-5.0%) of Recovering Its Pre-Recession Peak, Setting a Record 127-Consecutive Months of Economic Non-Expansion
– Common Experience and Realistic Estimates Show the Economy Is Not Exploding, Holding Well Shy of Recovering Its 2007 Peak
– Nonetheless, Real Aggregate Activity Remains Off Its 2009 Bottom, Growing Both Quarter-to-Quarter and Year-to-Year, Since Second-Quarter 2017
– Deteriorating Consumer and Systemic Liquidity, Intensify Economic Risks; Federal Reserve Tightening Policies and Oil-Driven Inflation Threaten a Fragile, Nascent Recovery

“No. 966: July 2018 Retail Sales, Industrial Production, Housing Starts, Building Permits, Freight

www.shadowstats.com