The Taxpayer Cost To Maintain Obama's Golf Handicap: Over $3 Million

As the nation shivered through February and March and saw it's gross domestic product collapse as humans hibernated, President Obama sought sunnier climes to ensure US supremacy on the world-leader's golf handicap rankings. As The Washington Times reports, however, Obama’s trips this year to the golfing playgrounds of Palm Springs and Key Largo cost taxpayers nearly $3 million for flight expenses alone on Air Force One.

New Jersey Mall Evacuated (Again): Reports Of Shots Fired And Vehicle Fire

For the second time in a few short months, the Paramus Mall at Garden State Plaza is being evacuated. There are no reports that an active shooter is present but shots were heard fired. There is also a car fire (which some are noting could have been responsible for the 'popping sounds'). Police are on scene and shoppers are being evacuated as the anxiety is (as one would imagine) high. There are currently no reports of injuries.

The All-Time-High In The Dow Jones Industrial Average Is A Hoax

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) Index is the only stock market index that covers both the second and the third industrial revolution. Calculating share indexes such as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and showing this index in a historical graph is a useful way to show which phase the industrial revolution is in. Changes in the DJIA shares basket, changes in the formula and stock splits during the take-off phase and acceleration phase of industrial revolutions are perfect transition-indicators. The similarities of these indicators during the last two revolutions are fascinating, but also a reason for concern. In fact the graph of the DJIA is a classic example of fictional truth, a hoax.

Will History Record The Ending Of QE As An Archduke Moment?

One can’t help but look at the situations transpiring around the globe and hope: things are different this time. The problem is being different puts it right back in line with that other caveat: history doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme. And so lies the most troubling aspect facing not only the U.S. economy, but quite possibly the world as whole. For if things rhyme anything inline with past events in history: We’re all in a dung heap of QE based minutia, with Geo-political ramifications the “intellectual” crowd never contemplated as possible – let alone probable.

Everything You Wanted To Know About Global Oil Fundamentals (But Were Afraid To Ask)

There's more than one oil price around the world and as the following comprehensive (but brief) overview from Morgan Stanley's Global Energy Teach In shows, crude oil pricing across the world is dynamic and multi-factorial - from fundamental factors (such as simple supply and demand and seasonality) to macro factors (such as USD strength, macro sentiment, and "burden") and risk premia (e.g. geopolitics), the following provides everything you wanted to know about global crude oil fundamentals, but were afraid to ask...

Anti-Sanctions? Putin Lifts "Limits" And China Agrees To Increase Investment In Russia

As Putin warned earlier in the week, they do not see the effectiveness of sanctions; but it seems he had something else in mind. By rolling back informal limits on Chinese investment, Putin has opened the door for significant capital inflows from his new best friend... and China has already agree to increase investment. While Putin is careful to note that the Chinese will not be allowed to invest in gold or diamond mining, or hi-tech projects, Russia hopes to lure cash from the world’s second-biggest economy into industries from housing and infrastructure construction to natural resources. Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet in Shanghai May 20/21 and Chinese officials have already confirmed bilateral cooperation in the areas of investment and finance has made major progress as local currency settlement in two-way trade increases. Forget sanctions, just remove the US from the world trade equation...

Which Are The Best Business Schools For The Buck (Spoiler Alert: Not Harvard Or Wharton)

As the San Fran Fed recently explained, when it looked at the upside of a college education, it found that the average college graduate earns over "$800,000 more than the average high school graduate by retirement age." What was ignored is the offsetting cost to this upside in terms of hundreds of thousands of college loans bearing compounding interest that are just as sticky and in increasingly more cases also remain with the graduate until retirement. But what about business schools? For those professionals who have already picked a career in finance or business, and who are willing to spending even more ridiculous amounts of money for a piece of paper and a rolodex, which business schools offer the best bank for the buck?

Ukraine Claims To Have Detained "Terrorists" With 100,000 Pre-Marked Referendum Ballots

While the following YouTube clip is - in the eyes of the West - irrefutable proof of potential vote-rigging ahead of tomorrow's referendum, we find it somewhat intriguing that a group of heavily-armed "rebels", carrying boxes with 100,000 pre-marked 'positive' referendum ballots would be detained by Ukraine's anti-terrorist operations without firing one shot... still men laying down with bags on their head proves it... right?

"The Gold Cartel" And The Giant Credit Bubble

The following outlines a solid statistical analysis of every aspect of the gold market, a thoroughly researched and well-presented account of the history of the modern monetary system and a highly original perspective of the growing bubble in debt and credit claims we have experienced since adopting today's system of credit-based money.

Donetsk Region May Shift To Rubles After 1.7 Million Vote In Referendum

Despite denouncements from the West (how did that work out in Crimea?) and diplomatic calls for postponement from Putin, tomorrow appears to be setting up for the next crucial catalyst in the ever-escalating civil (and not so civil) war in Ukraine. As RIA reports, Referendum organizers printed about 1.7 million ballots and on the day of voting in the region there will be more than 1,600 polling stations. The referendum will ask voters to answer the simple question: "Do you support the act of state independence of the People's Republic of Luhansk." and will take place from 8am to 8pm local time. Organizers claim that "the willingness to vote is almost total," which makes the decision of the People's Mayor that "after the referendum... gradually, we will move to the Russian ruble," even more economically significant for the IMF-supported nation.

FEC Chairman Warns Of Forthcoming Government Media Censorship

"Government officials, reacting to the growing voice of conservative news outlets, especially on the internet, are angling to curtail the media’s exemption from federal election laws governing political organizations, a potentially chilling intervention that the chairman of the Federal Election Commission is vowing to fight." While the claims made by Federal Elections Committee (FEC) Chairman Lee E. Goodman are extraordinarily frightening, sometimes people with strong partisan leanings can exaggerate threats and so we have to be careful but- crucially - media, in particular the internet, must be kept free and open. The internet is what allows an individual like us, armed with only a computer and an internet connection, to reach thousands of people per day on a shoestring budget. This is a revolution in humankind and must be preserved at all costs.

Gold Infographic: The Eclipsing Demand Of The East

Lifted by a continued surge in Asian gold sales, consumer demand for gold reached an all-time high in 2013 at 3,893 tonnes. Amazingly, 54% of this demand came from two places: India and China. However, it is only recently that the East has dominated global demand for the yellow metal. In this infographic, we look at India and China specifically to see why demand keeps expanding in the East.

 

10 Ways That Birth Order Affects Your Life

Where you exist in your family’s birth order can profoundly inform your path in life, whether because of genetics or simply the way that family members tend to treat firstborns vs. middle children vs. youngest children.  Psychologists have been debating the “Why?” since the 1800s, but, as ConvergEx's Nick Colas notes, the outcome is certain regardless of the cause – the effects of birth order last for a lifetime... If you had to size up a stranger and you could only ask them one question, what would it be?  For me, the answer is simple: "Where are you in the birth order of your siblings?" Are you a first/only child, or a later born? The answer is quite telling. By virtue of genetics or childrearing (the debate rages there), birth order matters a lot to the person you become.

The Death Of Hedge Funds?

With the very largest and most experienced of hedge fund managers vociferously commenting on the "Truman Show" mirage of the markets, the danger of currently policies (there is no way to tell exactly how it all will end. Badly, we guess), and the need for stock-picking prowess, we thought the following chart might highlight the dawning of the death of an entire substrata of so-called hedge-fund managers (and not just the $0 AUM newsletter publishers) who appear unable to "stockpick" their way out of a Fed-provided paper bag. Since Q4 2010, Long/Short funds are down 6% while the immutable low-cost levered wealth creation policy vehicle of choice for the Fed (the S&P 500) is up almost 50% (dividends aside).

Lessons From Wall Street’s First Crash... In 1792

The New York Fed's historical appreciation society has looked back at what was likely the US' first crash and foud that Alexander Hamilton's actions in 1792 which they claim "appears to have effectively managed the crisis with little or no long-term spillover to the economy," has now become the blueprint for manipulative intervention until this day by the central planners who know far better than 'us' collectively... but there are some lessons that Bagehot has that are worth remembering...

Just How Rigged Is The Casino: An Average Week On The Las Vegas Strip

The debate over just how rigged algos have made the market may be raging, but when it comes to riggedness, there is no debate that nothing beats Las Vegas where in the long (and not so long) run the house always wins. But how much does it win, and what games provide the house with the biggest profit? The following two charts answer these pertinent questions for anyone who may be planning a trip to the city of Lost Wages.