Posts Categorized: Jim’s Mailbox

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Jim/Bill,

Worth Remembering.

CIGA Wolfgang

“One simple rule to follow:

Determine what is best for the government and know that is what the powers are working to make happen.

Inflation is what is best for a government with enormous debt.” — Ayn Rand

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Jim/Bill

This MACD! When is it gonna be B/D level 0 = bear?

I still would like to study it for a wedge supercycle.

CIGA Huguette

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Jim/Bill,

“For a hamburger today, I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday”

Wimpy from Popeye

Which is real?

The hamburger? Or the payment Tuesday?

Un-Real Things

Cryptocurrency….untouchable by owner.

(exists in the cloud, like a figment of your imagination)

Equities….untouchable by owner.

(at one time you got physical certificates. Alas, no longer)

Bonds…….untouchable by owner.

(at one time you got physical certificates. Alas, no longer)

Commodities…..untouchable by owner.

(just try to get physical delivery of gold and silver. Good luck!)

(includes ALL commodities. Ever hear of “Force Majeure”?)

Real Estate…..untouchable by owner.

(to some extent).

(ever hear of “Eminent Domain”?)

Fiat currency….. untouchable by owner

(to some extent).

(it CAN be used to wipe your butt if necessary).

(truly a remarkable slight of hand. You’re led to believe that what you have in your hand is real. It is not! It’s simply an empty promise that deteriorates in value over time.)

This is why precious metals and gems have always stood the test of time. They are REAL!

Still not convinced?

E-commerce….untouchable by owner.

“But the one thing still not settled or answered from today’s misreporting: what happens to downloaded content when the buyer passes away? (Spoiler alert: just because you buy it doesn’t mean you own it, and certainly doesn’t mean you can do whatever you like with it.)

Only one in a million people actually read the terms and conditions of any Web site, service, or application. You immediately jump to the bottom of the screen and hit the “I Agree” button and sail off on your digital downloading way. It’s the terms and conditions which govern exactly who owns the music you buy even once you escape the mortal coil.”

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

Who Owns Your Downloaded Music After You Die?
September 3, 2012

Earlier today, a story emerged from the British tabloids that Bruce Willis was considering suing Apple in a bid to determine who gets his iTunes music collection after his death. Perhaps something more suited for April Fool’s Day? We reported it (and fell for it) and we’ve updated the piece to reflect that the original source was a work of fiction. (Willis’ wife tweeted this morning that the story was not true.)

But the one thing still not settled or answered from today’s misreporting: what happens to downloaded content when the buyer passes away? (Spoiler alert: just because you buy it doesn’t mean you own it, and certainly doesn’t mean you can do whatever you like with it.)

Only one in a million people actually read the terms and conditions of any Web site, service, or application. You immediately jump to the bottom of the screen and hit the “I Agree” button and sail off on your digital downloading way. It’s the terms and conditions which govern exactly who owns the music you buy even once you escape the mortal coil.

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Gentlemen,

Is it possible we are watching the final days of the US dollar? The Petro appears to be failing. The supply/demand story may be cover for a dying fiat. What do you guys think?

Gene

It is the dying days of the dollar but you are confusing “price” with “velocity”. Velocity is drying up, this is the evidence of a dying dollar as it’s global use is dropping. This symptom of low oil “prices” alone would be saying the opposite as it is taking fewer dollars per barrel…thus making the dollar more valuable in terms of oil. I believe what we are seeing rather is a weakness in global economic activity and trade at a time China (and the U.S.) have largely full storage facilities. “Where” to put the oil seems to be the problem so Mother Nature lowers the price to increase consumption and lower incentives to produce. I do believe there has been “cartel support” in price over the last year but that story has been torn apart by lower demand and full storage facilities. Debt saturation and slower (negative?) debt creation is taking it’s toll on economic activity, it may currently be viewed as deflationary winds blowing…until debt actually starts to blow up. Then, we will see currencies themselves rapidly fail as financial institutions fail…at that point central bank reactions will be considered hyperinflationary. You see, fiat currencies will not survive , whether you call it inflation or deflation is a moot point as “wealth” will end up accumulating in gold and silver. It is in terms of precious metals where everything will deflate, because at current “prices”…there is simply not enough gold and silver to go around. Think this one through thoroughly, the very last line is the key!

Bill

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Courtesy of our pal Dismal Dave Down Under.

Jim

‘Stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau. I do not feel there will be soon, if ever, a 50 or 60 point break from present levels, such as they have predicted. I expect to see the stock market a good deal higher within a few months.’ Dr. Irving Fisher, Economist at Yale University, 1929.

‘Zimbabwe’s stock market was the best performer this decade, but, your entire portfolio now buys you three eggs.’ Kyle Bass. (1963- ).

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Bill/Jim,

Raises real questions about his intentions behind pushing for sanctions on energy against Russia as to whose interest he is serving.

Robert

The [John] McCain Institute funded by George Soros and Saudi Arabia, EXPOSED
June 20, 2017

Neocon Arizona Republican Senator John McCain may have his own little Clinton Foundation pay-to-play scheme operating in the halls of the US Senate.

The Daily Caller investigative group has learned that in 2012 McCain turned over nearly $9 million in unspent funds from his failed 2008 presidential campaign to a new foundation bearing his name, the McCain Institute for International Leadership.

The McCain Institute for International Leadership’s mission is to serve as a “legacy” for John McCain and “is dedicated to advancing human rights, dignity, democracy and freedom”, but many readers certainly are well aware that human rights and dignity are the furthest things from the neocon warmonger’s mind.

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Regarding the recent collision between a Philippine cargo ship and US Destroyer Fitzgerald,

Our friend CIGA Dave sent us video of a high speed turn by one of these destroyers.

These destroyers are quite nimble which tells us someone fell asleep or Duterte ordered a ramming?  The real truth, if we ever get it will be quite interesting!

Bill

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Wolfgang, as they say…

Garbage in, garbage out!

Bill

Jim/Bill,

Let this Christensen character tell that to Soros and Rogers when they went head to head with the Pound Sterling while rates were rising 5% every few hours. With soaring rates, the Sterling still collapsed.

In theory, gold is about interest rates.

In theory, gold is about inflation.

In theory, gold is about global crisis.

In reality, gold is all about confidence in a currency.

Let him read JSMineset and receive and education in reality.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

Gold’s Luck Has Run Out, Prices To Fall To $1,100 By Year-End – Capital Economics
June 20, 2017

(Kitco News) – One firm sees gold falling 11% by the end of the year as further aggressive Federal Reserve interest rate hikes weigh on the market.

According to Simona Gambarini, commodity economist at Capital Economics, gold’s luck has run out as prices continue to fall in the wake of the Federal Reserve’s decision to raise interest rates by 25-basis points and signal further monetary policy tightening. In a recent report, she noted that because of the current interest rate environment, her firm is forecasting gold to end the year at around $1,100 an ounce, a drop of more than 11% from current future prices at $1,2450 an ounce

“There doesn’t seem to be any fundamental reason for gold to rally through the rest of the year,” she said in a telephone interview with Kitco News.

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Courtesy of GG.

Jim

Real World Food Prices Soar 14% In Just Two Months
June 19, 2017

With all the talk of food deflation that is supposed to result from the Whole Foods/Amazon merger, in the real world food prices have soared 14% in just the past two months.

June 19 (King World News) – Here is what Peter Boockvar noted as the world awaits the next round of monetary madness: On Friday after the Amazon-Whole Foods news we heard a lot of opinions on what this should mean for the Federal Reserve in terms of technology and disruption bringing us another round of price deflation in the important category of food. I just want to remind people though that the secular downward pressure on consumer goods prices really started in 1962 when Walmart was founded and brought us Every Day Low Prices…

I do hope though that the Amazon deal and the entire price impact of the internet brings some deeper discussion broadly and within the halls of the Fed on consumer inflation and what drives it because I still counter that the 2% central bank inflation goal should be challenged as to why it makes any sense. On the goods side, technological breakthroughs and efficiency will always be a natural suppressant on prices. The Compaq Portable II, cost $3,499 in 1986. If it rose by 2% per year since it would today be about $6,300. Instead something similar is about $1,000. I’ll throw out hedonic adjustments that pollute the CPI/PCE readings for now. Honestly speaking, it is where government and the Fed have been most influential that has seen the most amount of inflation. Examples being housing, whether to buy or rent, tuition, and medical care. I won’t now get into asset price inflation.

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Bill/Jim,

…I’m getting an increasing number of questions from blokes worried about certain headlines in the news.

I just send them this….

What to do with your ‘money’ when bad things happen…..

…bail-ins/deposit taxes/deposit insurance removed/negative yields/wars/pension cuts/currency wars/inflation/dog dies/real estate crashes/cash banned/banks fail/more wars/cat dies/constipation strikes/markets crash ….

Pray?… ‘Now, I know I’m not normally a praying man, but if you’re up there, please save me, Superman!‘ Homer Simpson. (1987-    ).

Or:…

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Then….

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     NB: Be aware that when The Great Unwashed come to the same conclusion, no one will be selling, and, you won’t be able to buy any!

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Jim,

This story is spot on and I am afraid Europe has already lost because they don’t have the weapons and DO mentality like the Americans have. Americans next to that have more an awareness and concept of property and of ownership, boundaries and nationalism (you see the american flag everywhere, Europe doesn’t have that). Europeans just don’t want to SEE it they don’t have the VISION till it will be too late.

Europeans want to be TOO social and TOO politically correct and they don’t see that they are undermining their own right of existence because these tribal people are still living in the Middle Ages and need to conquer and everybody that is being considered weak will be overrun. You can’t fight brutes with teddybear!!!

The US is an ocean away so just from a logistic point of view it will be more difficult though we always have to watch out for the trojan horse born outside or inside the US. It is about the motivation and beliefs that lone wolf crap of media doesn’t have any meaning look what motivates people.

Troubling times also with the increasing standoffishness between the rival parties in the US. It seems it is all converging the financial, social and geopolitical breakdowns, they always go together because tolerance evaporates.

Best

GG

Germany: Police Powerless Against Middle Eastern Crime Gangs
June 18, 2017

A court in Hanover has handed suspended sentences to six members of a Kurdish clan who seriously wounded two dozen police officers during a violent rampage in Hameln. The court’s ruling was greeted with anger and derision by police who said it is yet another example of the laxity of Germany’s politically correct judicial system.

The case goes back to January 2014, when a 26-year-old clan member, arrested for robbery, tried to escape from the magistrate’s office by jumping out of a seventh-floor courtroom window. The suspect was taken to the hospital, where he died. Members of his clan subsequently ransacked the hospital, as well as the court, and attacked police with rocks and other projectiles; 24 police officers and six paramedics were injured.

The judge said he was lenient because the defendants witnessed the death of the 26-year-old and were traumatized. The judge also revealed that he had reached a deal with the clan, which among other effects prevented police from testifying in court.

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Soft Sharia in Turkey
June 18, 2017

The good news about Turkish justice is that despite 15 years of not-so-creeping Islamization, court verdicts do not yet sentence wrongdoers to public lashing, stoning, amputations or public hangings in main city squares. The bad news about the Turkish justice system is that it is increasingly religiously ideological, reminiscent of the Ottoman justice system where non-Muslims were legally inferior to the Muslims and were, in principle, expected to be constantly reminded of their inferiority to the dominant community through restrictions and markers.

In 21st century Turkey, fortunately, there are not [yet] markers revealing non-Muslim citizens or laws discriminating against non-Muslims. Nevertheless, with or without markers, there is positive discrimination in favor of pious Muslims and against the others. Turkish law enforcement is embarrassingly pro-pious Sunni Muslim.

Turkey, nominally, is not a Sharia state. But it is becoming one on a de facto basis. In January, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government issued a decree stipulating that law enforcement officials, including security officials, police and coast guard officers, could lose their jobs if they marry a “known adulterer.” The legislation reads that law enforcement officials cannot “intentionally marry a person who is known to be impure, or to stay in a marriage, or continue to live with such a person.” The offense is punishable by up to 24 months’ suspension from work. In addition, the decree covers stricter rules against drinking, gambling, the vague and emphatic “going to places that would ruin your reputation,” as well as “excessive spending,” all while off duty.

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Jim/Bill,

One down……..49 to go.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

Illinois’ Economic Growth Is Worse Than During The Great Depression
June 14, 2017

Illinois’ total state economic activity has increased by only 4 percent since 2007, which is lower than the U.S.’ 10 percent GDP growth during the worst decade of the Great Depression

There are fewer Illinoisans working today than there were 10 years ago. Millions of Illinoisans are feeling the brunt of the state’s economic pain and financial meltdown in the form of joblessness and hopelessness. Too many families are dealing with unemployment and underemployment, and too few are able to find their dream jobs in the Land of Lincoln. That’s because Illinois has the Great Depression economy of the Midwest.

In fact, Illinois’ economic growth is worse than during the worst years of America’s Great Depression. Illinois’ gross state product, which measures total economic activity, has increased by barely more than 4 percent over the past decade. In comparison, the U.S. gross domestic product during America’s Great Depression increased by nearly 10 percent during the worst decade of the Great Depression, from 1930-1939.

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Unable To Pay Bills, Illinois Sends “Dear Contractor” Letter Telling Firms To Halt Road Work On July 1
June 15, 2017

The state of Illinois has not passed a budget for close to three years.

Arguably it’s just as well because Illinois budgets for decades have been nothing but a moth-eaten collection of lies, one time deficits repeated endlessly, and financial wizardry statements designed to disguise Illinois’ real problems: failure to rein in spending coupled with a very business unfriendly environment.

As Illinois’ bond rating careens towards junk, Illinois Unpaid Bills Jumped to $14.3 Billion. Today, the state told contractors to halt roadwork other than that required for safety.

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Jim/Bill,

The labor force participation rate declined by 0.2 percentage points to 62.7 percent in May, but has shown no clear trend over the past 12 months. The employment-population ratio edged down to 60.0 percent in May. (See table A-1).

Don’t forget that the figures are misleading because a lot of people that work part time are included in the employment rate. It is all optics!

CIGA GG

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I expect we will see a belated reaction when people finally wake up to what is happening or when we again see some weak economic figures. The US dollar is toast!

CIGA GG

Jim/Bill,

I have only one question………

Who will buy the “crap” (MBS)?

and the bigger “crap” (TRSY’s)?

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

Fed Reveals Balance Sheet “Normalization” Schedule: Will Reduce Reinvestments By $10BN/Month
June 14, 2017

Coming in earlier than many expected, the Fed for the first time laid out how it plans to “normalize” its balance sheet which it expects to reduce by trimming reinvestments in TSYs at a rate of $6Bn/month initially, and MBS at $4Bn/month, or a total of $10bn/month, and will increase the reinvestment caps in steps of 10bn at 3 month intervals over 12 months until it reaches a total 50bn per month.

Indicatively this is well below Goldman’s expectation of $10bn and $5bn initial caps for TSYs and MBS, as we showed over the weekend.

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As its said in the addendum to the materials, “the Committee currently expects to begin implementing a balance sheet normalization program this year, provided that the economy evolves broadly as anticipated” with directions to read a Policy Addendum.

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One noteworthy reality about Europe’s current political leadership is summarised here by Phil Lawler:

“• Macron, the newly elected French president, has no children.

• German chancellor Angela Merkel has no children.

• British prime minister Theresa May has no children.

• Italian prime minister Paolo Gentiloni has no children.

• Holland’s Mark Rutte,

• Sweden’s Stefan Löfven,

• Luxembourg’s Xavier Bettel,

• Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon—all have no children.

• Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, has no children.

“So a grossly disproportionate number of the people making decisions about Europe’s future have no direct personal stake in that future.”

If true, this is most interesting…

CIGA B

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Jim/Bill,

Yields on the 10 year bond crashed from 2.20 to 2.11 this morning, indicating worsening economic activity, continued loose monetary policy, and after today, possibly no more rate hikes…lest we dive into a depression.

The smart money (Bond Market) has voted.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

GM Extends Plant Shutdowns As Toxic Trifecta For Auto Loans Fuels Carmageddon
June 14, 2017

In yet another unsurprising headline, The Wall Street Journal reports that GM will extend the typical summer shutdown at certain U.S. factories to deal with slumping sales and bloated inventory, a sign the industry’s hot streak is grinding to a halt.

The No. 1 U.S. auto maker in terms of sales will idle its Chevrolet Malibu factory near Kansas City for five weeks starting in late June, Vicky Hale, president of the United Auto Workers Local 31, said. Job cuts will be needed if GM is forced to slow assembly-line speeds when those workers return.

Additional downtime is also slated in Lordstown, Ohio, a small-car factory already stung by deep layoffs related to a pullback in demand for passenger cars. A GM spokesman declined to comment on specific plans.

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Tanzania’s Acacia Spat Shows Deepening Battle With Business
June 14, 2017

Tanzanian President John Magufuli’s escalating battles with business risk alienating the very investors he needs to drive his multi-billion dollar industrialization policy.

On Monday, the 57-year-old leader ratcheted up his dispute with miners by accusing Acacia Mining Plc of operating illegally in Tanzania and insisting the government is owed billions of shillings of unpaid taxes. It’s the latest in a series of broadsides against private investors who are being unnerved by his administration’s stance and its lack of consultation on policy. Shares in Acacia, which denies any wrongdoing, slumped as much as 16 percent.

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Jim/Bill,

With all the…

fake political news,

fake global news,

fake markets,

fake politicians…

…I find your reaffirmation of gold and silver as the true safety net still refreshing.

Nothing is real anymore in our society, except gold and silver.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

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If this is true, the sellers of this “risk insurance” need to “lay it off” to someone else. Risk can only be transferred to someone else, never eliminated. It was this laying off of risk that took the market apart at the seams in 1987…

Bill

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Jim/Bill,

What does this mean in common English?

How does this effect me, even though I am NOT in the markets?

CIGA Norma

Traders Are Buying The Most Nasdaq Downside Protection Since Lehman
June 12, 2017

Friday was volumes of Nasdaq ETF put options explode higher as investors rushed to protect their downside as FANG stocks led the tech wreck.

This is the biggest spike in volume since Lehman in September 2008.

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Compliments of GG. All is well! Who are you kidding?

Jim

Is Another Spanish Bank about to Bite the Dust?
June 10, 2017

After its most tumultuous week since the bailout days of 2012, Spain’s banking system is gripped by a climate of fear, uncertainty and distrust. Rather than allaying investor nerves, the shotgun bail-in and sale of Banco Popular to Santander on Tuesday has merely intensified them. For the first time since the Global Financial Crisis, shareholders and subordinate bondholders of a failing Spanish bank were not bailed out by taxpayers; they took risks in order to make a buck, and they bore the consequences. That’s how it should be. But bank investors don’t like not getting bailed out.

Now they’re worrying it could happen again. As Popular’s final days showed, once confidence and trust in a bank vanishes, it’s almost impossible to restore them. The fear has now spread to Spain’s eighth largest lender, Liberbank, a mini-Bankia that was spawned in 2011 from the forced marriage of three failed cajas (savings banks), Cajastur, Caja de Extremadura and Caja Cantabria.

This creature’s shares were sold to the public in May 2013 at an IPO price of €0.40. By April 2014, they were trading above €2, a massive 400% gain. But by April 2015, shares started sinking. By May 2017, they were trading at around €1.20.

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CIGA GG says that now it is becoming fun!

Jim

Feinstein: “Congress Should Investigate If Lynch Pressured Comey To Cover For Hillary Clinton”
June 11, 2017

In a surprisingly non-partisan take by Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, the California senator said that Congress should investigate whether – as we discussed last Thursday – former Attorney General Loretta Lynch pressured former FBI Director James Comey to cover for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

“I think we need to more about that, and there’s only one way to know about it and that’s to have the Judiciary committee take a look at that.”

“I think we need to know more about that,” Feinstein told Briana Keilar on CNN’s State of the Union, adding that “there’s only way to know about it, and that’s to have the Judiciary Committee take a look at that.”

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Jim/Bill,

Nice way for ex-Presidents to talk!

He may well be correct, but nonetheless, you just don’t say this.

Nobody in our political system has “class” anymore. That could be the reason the world doesn’t respect us anymore.

Want class? Get gold!

Quiet, understated, rolls with punches, and ALWAYS wins in the end.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

Obama Reveals True Thoughts On Trump: “He’s Nothing But A Bullshitter”
May 18, 2017

People Magazine decided to dedicate their cover story this month to their beloved “cool, even-keeled, no-drama Barack Obama.” And even though it will come as surprise to precisely no one, the story apparently includes the “bombshell” revelation that….wait for it…Obama can’t stand Trump…shocking, we know.

According to two anonymous sources friendly with the Obamas, People Magazine revealed that Obama frequently describes Trump as “nothing but a bullshitter”…

“He’s nothing but a bullsh–ter,” Obama told two friends early last November, describing an election night phone call with Trump, in which the businessman suddenly professed his “respect” and “admiration” for Obama—after years of hectoring.

Speaking to PEOPLE for its new cover story on Obama and his wife Michelle adjusting to life outside the White House, the two friends quoted Obama’s blunt assessment of President-elect Trump. And how has Obama’s opinion changed since Trump been in office? “Well,” said one of the sources, “it hasn’t gotten any better.”

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Beginning to look scary, sliding into the abyss.

Jim

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Jim/Bill,

Markets are hitting new all time highs today. But let’s look under the hood. It’s eerie!

Apple -Down

Amazon -Down

Netflix -Down

Google -Down

Twitter -Down

Snapchat -Down

Microsoft -Down

AS of noon today, Dow up 100 points!

In 20 minutes, the price drops are: (with the Dow still up 98)

Now at 1:20 pm….

Now at 2:00 pm….

Now at 2:50 pm….

Apple -Down 1.22 – 2.21 -4.45 -5.29 -7.60

Amazon -Down 8.70 -14.22 -18.50 -29.00 -33.50

Netflix -Down 1.60 – 3.68 -5.75 -8.15 -10.15

Google -Down 5.67 -14.50 -21.00 -32.00 -37.00

Twitter -Down .24 – .39 -.51 -.72 -.93

Snapchat -Down .93 – .89 -.81 -78 -.83

Microsoft -Down .74 – 1.21 -1.78 -2.22 -3.02

Facebook -Down .80 – 1.94 -3.40 -4.86 -6.40

Tesla -Down 2.50 – 7.50 -8.50 -9.11 -13.00

Has the bloom fallen from the rose?

Oh well…..there’s still Tesla.

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

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Jim/Bill,

Most investors of the “Jive 5” (remember the Nifty Fifty in our day?) believe nothing can stop their stocks from going up forever (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Google).

Just remember, there’s always a Black Swan lurking in the shadows. It’s almost impossible to spot in advance. But once it slowly approaches the light of day, the nimble will spot it and begin reacting. Then, and only then, can you ride their coattails.

My feelings are simple……technology will never leave us. It’s here to stay. However, that can’t be said for the consumer!

I believe, as the article below insinuates, that the elimination of the Middle Class will leave Amazon without the consumers to keep its momentum going.

For Facebook, I believe its “eyeballs” will be leaving in droves as the populace becomes aware of their addiction and Facebook ‘s propagation of such a business plan.

As for Apple, its transformation from a software innovator to a hardware company will take its toll. Many respond that Apple is capitalizing on the services side of the equation, like I-music. But as seen in Amazon, it is highly dependent on the welfare of the consumer.

Nonetheless, it’s never the company itself that breeds success. It is management. And the era of Steve Jobs and his visions has long passed.

Netflix will succumb to competitive forces such as Disney, ESPN, carriers, cable companies, Apple and Google (the Jive 5 will begin feeding off each other).

Google will become a victim of legal entanglements and restrictions regarding its invasion of privacy. Advertisers still appear to be its lifeblood, if I’m not mistaken.

These are only the obvious pitfalls. The biggest pitfall will be the old standby……no more incremental buyers of their stock. In fact, as Amazon will be plagued by a lack of middle class consumers, so the same thing will prey on all the above.

I’m middle class and can tell you that $350 a month for Verizon phones family plan and $350 per month for cable, are eating away at my standard of living. I’m sure I’m not alone.

As far as social networking is concerned, I’ve opted out of Facebook as it has become too childish and too much of a distraction in daily life. And it’s not just me. I’ve seen employees in many companies sit in their cubicles texting and roaming the net. That will not last long.

Perhaps I’m just an old fart that’s being dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st Century. However I do have a long, deep, rich past that provides continual reminders and warnings of what was and what will be. Something Millennials have yet to acquire.

Sitting on my back porch with a good book and Johnnie Walker Black, I remain enthralled with my “Golden” years.

A loyal Comrade In Golden Arms…..

CIGA Wolfgang Rech

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Jim/Bill,

Italy faces borrowing shock when ECB removes support, warns Pimco — It is an absolute mystery to me how Italy has been able to survive so far with more NPL than Greece has debt — there is only one answer: Draghi!

CIGA GG

Italy Faces Borrowing Shock When ECB Removes Support, Warns Pimco
June 4, 2017

ITALY faces a “horror” scenario when the European Central Bank winds down its bond buying programme in a move that risks sparking a surge in the country’s borrowing costs, according to one of the world’s largest bond managers.

The Pacific Investment Management Company (Pimco) said the ECB’s €60bn (£53bn)-a-month quantitative easing (QE) programme was “very supportive” for countries such as Italy and Portugal and had helped to limit volatility in these countries.

Andrew Balls, chief investment officer for global fixed income, said removing that support was likely to push up bond yields in a country that has struggled to implement reforms and reduce its massive debt pile amid weak growth.

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Compliments of CIGA GG

Jim

The EMP threat put in context: It may not be the top threat we face, but it’s still a threat – Part 2
June 6, 2017

Recently we reported that the threat of an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) event, via nuclear attack or a massive solar storm, has long been considered a threat to the nation’s power grid and all of the infrastructure it supports. But, our report noted, because there still isn’t a consensus among experts about how best to protect the grid, or how to pay for that protective upgrade, the issue is not at the top of concerns for the federal government. There are, after all, only limited funds and resources to dole out each year, and while EMP testing and research has been ongoing since the 1950s, there is still no universal protective system in place, government analysts and experts say.

But as we also noted, the federal government’s and the power industry’s lack of action on technology to protect the grid should not imply that there is no threat at all posed by an EMP incident. And while some question the 90-percent casualty rate estimate from earlier this year regarding the number of Americans who are likely to perish following EMP incident, most reasonable people agree that there will be a large number of casualties.

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