Who Said It? "Deficit Spending Is A Scheme To Confiscate Wealth. Gold Stands In The Way Of This Insidious Process"

"This is the shabby secret of the welfare statists’ tirades against gold. Deficit spending is simply a scheme for the confiscation of wealth. Gold stands in the way of this insidious process. It stands as a protector of property rights. If one grasps this, one has no difficulty in understanding the statists’ antagonism toward the gold standard." - Who Said It?

Catalanstrophe - 81% Of 2.25 Million Voters Choose Independence; Government Responds: "Useless Sham"

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has a problem. Despite his best legal and propoganda defenses (and harsh weather conditions) today's symbolioc vote for Catalonia independence proceeded... and the initial results (with 88% of the vote counted) are in:

*TURNOUT IN CATALAN BALLOT WAS ABT 2.25 MLN, GOVT SAYS; 81% BACK INDEPENDENCE

The Spanish government is saying the "data is not valid" and is investigating the illegal ballot calling it a "useless sham." Catalan President Mas says pro-independence parties will meet this week to put pressure on Madrid.

And The Biggest "Source Of Equity Demand In Recent Years", According To Goldman Sachs, Is...

Spoiler alert: it's not the Fed, even though the portfolio rebalancing channel courtesy of a $4.5 trillion Fed balance sheet certainly assured that the artificially inflated bubble in stocks, as a result of the Fed's own purchases of bonds, is unlike anything seen before (and to all those debating whether the bubble is in bonds or stocks, here is the answer: it is in both). The answer, according to Goldman's David Kostin is the following: "From a strategic perspective, buybacks have been the largest source of overall US equity demand in recent years."

Oil Price Slide – No Good Way Out

We often hear that if there is not enough oil at a given price, the situation will lead to substitution or to demand destruction. Because of the networked nature of the economy, this demand destruction comes about in a different way than most economists expect–it comes from fewer people having jobs with good wages. With lower wages, it also comes from less debt being available. We end up with a disparity between what consumers can afford to pay for oil, and the amount that it costs to extract the oil. This is the problem we are facing today, and it is a very difficult issue.

What The Swiss Gold Referendum Means For Gold Demand

The referendum for the Swiss Gold Initiative is scheduled for November 30th and the propaganda war - between the Swiss National Bank (SNB) and the Swiss Parliament on one side and the Swiss People's Party (SVP) on the other - has begun and we expect it to escalate as the day draws ever nearer. Having already questioned the 'location, location, location' of Switzerland's current gold stash, and examined the initiative in great depth here, JPMorgan notes that not only might the forthcoming Swiss gold referendum stabilize gold prices at a time when Gold ETF demand continues to decline, but warns, it also appears that markets under-appreciate this event.

A "Magical Fairyland" – How Global Multi-National Corporations Avoid Taxes In Luxembourg

“A Luxembourg structure is a way of stripping income from whatever country it comes from,’’ said Stephen E. Shay, a professor of international taxation at Harvard Law School and a former tax official in the U.S. Treasury Department. The Grand Duchy, he said, “combines enormous flexibility to set up tax reduction schemes, along with binding tax rulings that are unique. It’s like a magical fairyland.”

Peak Cheap Oil

Energy is the lifeblood of any economy.  But when an economy is based on an exponential debt-based money system and that is based on exponentially increasing energy supplies, the supply of that energy therefore deserves our very highest attention. If we are already at peak, as the data suggest is possible, then we are all in trouble.

Russia, China Sign Second Mega-Gas Deal: Beijing Becomes Largest Buyer Of Russian Gas

As we previewed on Friday, when we reported that "Russia Nears Completion Of Second "Holy Grail" Gas Deal With China", moments ago during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum taking place this weekend in Beijing, Russia and China signed 17 documents Sunday, grenlighting a second "mega" Russian natural gas to China via the so-called "western" or "Altay" route, which as previously reported, would supply another 30 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas a year to China. Gazprom CEO Miller noted that with the increase of deliveries via the western route, the total volume of Russian gas deliveries to China may exceed the current levels of export to Europe in the medium-term perspective. In other words, China has now eclipsed Europe as Russia's biggest, and most strategic natural gas client.

Republicans "Extremely Concerned" At Mel Watt's Taxpayer-Backed Risky-Home-Loan Reforms

When we commented on Mel Watt's Einsteinianly-insane plans to reform FHFA, allowing bad creditors to buy houses (again) with only 3% down-payments (again), we expected nothing but echoes as the "it's everyone's 'right' to own a home"-meme gets played out for all to see in this goldfish-like societal memory that has entirely lobotomized the actions (and impact) of when this idiocy was trued before. However, a funny thing happened this week... called an 'election'. And The Republicans have been quick to take note of Obama-appointee Mel Watt's (replacing acting director Ed Demarco - who had some less-politik plans for real reform) plans with House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling exclaiming he was "extremely concerned," about Watt's "efforts to force taxpayers to back high-risk mortgages with ultra-low down payments," concluding this plan "must be rejected."

Another "Conspiracy Theory" Bites The Dust: UBS Settles Over Gold Rigging, Many More Banks To Follow

And then there was the precious metals market: a market which all the Keynesian fanatic paper bugs said was immune from manipulation, be it of the central or commercial bank kind, even with every other market clearly exposed for perpetual rigging either by hedge funds, by prop desks, by HFTs, or central banks themselves. Sadly this too conspiracy theory just was crushed into the reality of conspiracy fact, when moments ago the FT reported that alongside admissions of rigging every other market, UBS - always the proverbial first rat in the coalmine, to mix and match metaphors- is about to "settle" allegations of gold and silver rigging. In other words: it admits it had rigged the gold and silver markets, without of course "admitting or denying" it did so.

Government Has "Trampled On Us Too Much"; Over 2 Million Catalans Vote In Symbolic Referendum For Independence

UPDATE: *TURNOUT IN CATALAN BALLOT 2 MILLION AS OF 6PM, GOVT SAYS; RAJOY SAYS MAS'S ATTITUDE NOT HELPFUL FOR TALKS

With well over 1 million Catalonians already voted by the middle of the day, Catalonia's 'illegal-in-the-eyes-of-the-Spanish-government' vote for secession appears to have garnered more relative public support than Americans who voted for real this week. As threats from Rajoy and the Spanish government grow louder, the Catalan president Artur Mas rather sarcastically noted "we're running a high-quality democracy here," adding that "it has been difficult to get to this point... which is incredible in a democracy." The government has decried the use of public buildings for the vote, but Mas exclaims, "if they want to know who’s responsible for opening up the schools, they should look at me. I’m responsible. My government and me." Results are not due until Monday morning but opinion polls show at least 80% support an official vote and 50% in favor of full independence for the region that represents over 20% of Spain's GDP. As yet no signs of any military presence, other than vehicles moved into the region last week.

The Broken Model Of The Eurozone

The fatal flaw in the eurozone model is that there’s no way, no escape clause, to rectify the inherited differences between north and south. Moreover, because there isn’t, the differences must and will get bigger. There’s nothing any kind of stimulus by the ECB or EU can do about that. The EU was founded on ideals of peace. But unless someone does something, fast, it will be the source of bitter and bloody fighting. Better wisen up now, guys (and I don’t mean the leadership, they’ll go on till the end). In math, there are things that just don’t add up. This is one of them.

Over At CNN, Even America's Seals Have Had It With "Obama"

After last week's midterm elections, the revulsion against 6 years of failed Obama policies, if only for the economy not so much for the S&P500, was plain for all to see (and no, Friday's seasonally adjusted jobs report "proving" just how well the economy is doing isn't grounds for a recount). However, little did we know how far anger at Obama has spread, because just when we thought CNN couldn't get any better... it did.

The Detailed US Shale Oil Cost Curve: Where Is The Line In The Sand?

On an almost daily basis, investors are reassured that a falling oil price is "unequivocally good" for the US economy. The "It's like a tax cut for the consumer"-meme dominates financial media while the impact on the Shale (or tight) oil industry is shrugged off blindly with "well breakevens are low, right?" As Barclays shows in the chart below, the breakeven price for oil to shut-in tight-oil supply varies by region (and corporation) adding that at $80/b WTI, most producers will sweat it out. But, they warn, if prices remain at these levels through 2015, it could compromise the significant potential new volumes that are needed to offset declines from existing wells. This new, higher-breakeven volume is small in 2015, but becomes much larger in 2016 (with a 17-25% plunge in earnings which would drastically reduce capex... and thus The US Economy).