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Morning Gold Fixing: Bernanke: “Catastrophic” Implications for U.S. Economy If $14.3 Trillion Debt Ceiling Not Raised

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by GoldCore

Bernanke: “Catastrophic” Implications for U.S. Economy if $14.3 Trillion Debt Ceiling Not Raised

Gold and silver have given up a small bit of yesterday’s strong gains in all currencies (especially the euro – see chart below) but are up more than 1% and 3% respectively on the week. Asian equity indices were higher overnight and are higher for the week, except for India where there are growing concerns about surging inflation and interest rates. European indices are higher today and most are up by some 1.5% to 2% on the week – as are US indices.

US Government 10 Year Bond – 10 Year (Weekly) GoldCore

US Government 10 Year Bond – 10 Year (Weekly)

Government bond markets continue to creep higher with the benchmark 10 year yields in the UK, Germany and US rising 3.53%, 2.6% and a substantial 6.8% respectively just this week. The rise in the US 10 year is one of the biggest market movements this week and bears watching as it appears to be breaking out above resistance at 3.5% (see chart above). So too does the US 30 Year treasury which has risen to 4.66%, meaning the 30 year yield is 2.76% higher just this week.

Ben Bernanke warned yesterday that not hiking the debt ceiling could put the US “into a position of defaulting on its debt and the implications of that, for our financial system, for our fiscal policy, for our economy, would be catastrophic.” This would obviously have a negative impact on paper assets denominated in dollars and other fiat currencies.

While US bonds are weaker this week, German and UK bonds have fallen more sharply so far in 2011 with yields rising 9.3% and 11.5% respectively.

UK Government 10 Year Bond – 10 year (Weekly) GoldCore

UK Government 10 Year Bond – 10 year (Weekly)

The scale of commodity price increases and growing inflation internationally will likely see US government bonds continue to come under pressure and the US may take further steps to monetise their massive liabilities, thereby further debasing the US dollar. Other developed nations face similar fiscal and monetary challenges, and their bond markets and currencies similar risks.

Copper, wheat and rice are up 3.9%, 4.4% and 8% respectively this week alone and so far in 2011, they are up 2.3%, 8% and 13.3%.

Markets will watch Egypt today and the instability in Egypt and the Middle East is contributing to higher oil prices with NYMEX crude up 1.8% and Brent crude up 2.54% this week.

The National Inflation Association reported overnight that wheat prices are up 100% since June and warned that food and energy price inflation could lead to food riots spreading from Egypt across the world and even to the US by 2015. They believe that this is a further sign that massive inflation and potentially hyperinflation is coming in the coming months and years.

All eyes will be on the US Non Farm payrolls number today and whether the tentative economic recovery continues to be jobless. Given the scale of hedonic adjustments and manipulation of the methodologies of calculating the unemployment figures, the numbers are somewhat dubious and not wholly reliable.

Baltic Dry Index – 5 Year (Daily) GoldCore

Baltic Dry Index – 5 Year (Daily)

A far more important measure of the health of the global economy is the Baltic Dry Index which measures international dry-bulk commodity-shipping costs and is seen as an excellent proxy for global trade and thus the health of the global economy (see chart above). After a massive collapse, from nearly 12,000 to 666 in December 2008, it subsequently recovered somewhat in 2009. It then gradually fell in 2010 and it is down 8% this week alone and 41% so far this year.

The continuing fall in the Baltic Dry Index strongly suggests that the global economic recovery is not as robust as claimed and that we may be on the verge of a double-dip recession and a bout of stagflation – possibly a severe one.

Gold’s price surge yesterday was likely a combination of short covering, the very bullish demand figures out of China, accommodative monetary policy sounds from Trichet and Bernanke. The geopolitical situation in Egypt and the Middle East likely also led to buying.

Gold was particularly strong in euros and surged from EUR 962 to over EUR 994 in minutes. The ECB’s ultra-accommodative monetary policy continues and the EBC is losing credibility regarding inflation. Also, the very survival of the euro, as we know it today, in the coming years continues to be in doubt.

Gold in Euros – 10 Day (Tick) GoldCore

Gold in Euros – 10 Day (Tick)

Former United States ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton's comments that Israel should bomb Iran if Mubarak falls has not got much attention. While Bolton’s neo-conservative politics are out of favour in the current White House, his hawkish views would be shared by some in the Pentagon and intelligence agencies.


(Dow Jones)-- PRECIOUS METALS: Gold Eases In Asia; Egypt Situation In Focus
Gold fell a little while trading in a narrow range in Asia Friday, in a regional market thinned by Lunar New Year public holidays in many countries, but holding most of the gains put on overnight after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke effectively underscored a continued easy money policy.

At 0520 GMT, spot gold was bid $1,351.40 a troy ounce, down $4.20 from Thursday's New York close, towards the lower end of the day's trading range thus far of $1,350.30 to $1,355.55. Tocom December gold rose Y51 to Y3,560 a gram.

Technically, gold has bounced off a key target area around $1,320, said Jonathan Barratt, Managing Director of Sydney-based Commodity Broking Services; for the past two days the firm has been urging clients to take long positions.

But other issues are also supporting gold, he said, adding that the crisis in Egypt could be worsening, and is now a flight-to-quality story for gold.

(Bloomberg) -- Gold May Gain on Physical Buying, Political Unrest, Survey Shows
Gold may advance as this year’s drop boosts physical purchases and political tensions in the Middle East spur demand, a survey found.

Thirteen of 24 traders, investors and analysts surveyed by Bloomberg, or 54 percent, said the metal will rise next week. Eight predicted lower prices and three were neutral. Gold for April delivery was down 0.6 percent for this week at $1,334 an ounce at 11:15 a.m. yesterday on the Comex in New York.

Gold declined in January for the first month since July, and has dropped 6.9 percent since setting a record $1,432.50 in December. Protesters have clashed with supporters of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak this week as the political turmoil that has engulfed the Middle East the past month spread to Yemen.

(Bloomberg) -- CME Raises Margins for Silver, Copper, Platinum After Today
CME Group Inc. raised margins for silver, copper and platinum, effective after the close of business today, the exchange said in a statement on its website.

(Bloomberg) -- Investors Treat London Luxury Homes Like Gold: Chart of the Day
London luxury homes act more as a haven for wealth than other types of real estate and have more in common with gold, according to Savills Plc.

The CHART OF THE DAY shows how the number of sales of central London homes costing more than 5 million pounds ($8 million) follows a similar pattern as the three-month percentage change in gold prices.

“It’s as much about storing wealth as it is about real- estate investment -- the way that gold behaves,” said Yolande Barnes, head of residential research at the London-based property broker.

Overseas investors currently account for 60 percent of buyers of high-end homes in central London compared with about 40 percent in 2009, Savills estimates. Russians are the biggest group, with 20 percent of all purchases.

Prime residential properties in the city appreciated by about almost 5 percent last year, Savills estimates. Average values for homes across the U.K. dropped 3.4 percent, according to an index released on Jan. 10 by Halifax, the mortgage-lending arm of Lloyds Banking Group Plc.

(Bloomberg) -- Gold Futures Rise as Much as 1.8% on Signs of Mideast Tensions
Gold rose as much as 1.8 percent on signs of escalating tensions in the Middle East.

The Muslim Brotherhood movement denied calling to revoke Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel and said the country’s parliament has the right to review the pact if the people want. Mohamed Saad El-Katatni, a member of Muslim Brotherhood’s top executive body, spoke in a phone interview today.

Gold futures for March delivery reached $1,355.80 an ounce on the Comex in New York, the highest in two weeks.

(Wall Street Journal) -- Old Yeller! Gold Jumps on Egypt, Big Ben
Gold seems to have snapped out of its funk today.

On the Comex, gold rose for the second time in three days, adding a solid $20.80, or 1.6%, to $1352.30. Cousin Silver also added 1.5% to $28.7330, its fourth increase in five sessions.

The events in Egypt are certainly helping the dark-hearted goldbugs gather more adherents. Chaos is, umm, golden to them. But perhaps more important than the violence in Egypt, the big central bankers unexpectedly released a dole of doves today despite more signs of the recovery improving.

Jean-Claude Trichet, head of the European Central Bank, has recently associated himself with concerns about incipient inflation. Earlier today, however, after the ECB policy meeting he stressed that the ECB isn’t about to raise short-term rates anytime soon.


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Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:03 | 934203 BrianOFlanagan
BrianOFlanagan's picture

we should see some follow through buying today, assuming nothing spectacular comes out of the BS jobs report.  

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:34 | 934287 Twindrives
Twindrives's picture

Bernanke's pet fiat currency was D.O.A. from the beginning.  Just like Soetoros' faux presidency.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:09 | 934208 Azannoth
Azannoth's picture

"John Bolton's comments that Israel should bomb Iran if Mubarak" and I thought he said bomb Iran because it's Tuesday

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:11 | 934213 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

Here's a bit more info. Bolton's a crazy fuckwit.


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:34 | 934284 cosmictrainwreck
cosmictrainwreck's picture

a legend in his own mind, certainly

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:46 | 934359 snowball777
snowball777's picture

You'd think the neocons would have the sense to muzzle this fucktard by now, but still he speaks and people listen to his drivel. Why?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:13 | 934719 Watauga
Watauga's picture

National Review recently ran a piece that promotes him for the GOP nomination for President in 2012.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:10 | 934211 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture
You know, you'll probably be able to recycle that headline in a years time from now, just by removing the period;
Morning Gold Fixing: Bernanke: “Catastrophic” Implications for U.S. Economy If $143 Trillion Debt Ceiling Not Raised

It should really state "catastrophic implications regardless of debt ceiling being raised."

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:21 | 934242 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

That's the June 1, 2014 headline right there.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:22 | 934243 pgarner
pgarner's picture


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:37 | 934304 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

Or when Benny get's a succesor, he'll just shit the words and blame it all on Benny. Like Obama does with Bush:

"Raising the debt Ceiling had catastrophic implications that can only be adressed by raising it much more"

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:14 | 934220 eigenvalue
eigenvalue's picture

Gold is upping too slowly. Like a snail...

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:28 | 934258 TrihumpTheInsultDog
TrihumpTheInsultDog's picture

I wonder what that means?

Were we not promised that it would be on fire right now? $2500, screeching toward $5000 or $50,000 /oz?

Fire Bitchez! Gotta love the gold bugs.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:35 | 934292 tmosley
tmosley's picture

The paper price is fake.  The sooner it breaks down toward zero (among infinite volatility), the sooner the current system ends due to metal default, and "gold bugs" take over the financial system as physical premiums head toward infinite.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:59 | 934421 Snidley Whipsnae
Snidley Whipsnae's picture


Paper gold is an oxymoron... like military intelligence or jumbo shrimp...

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:03 | 934436 TrihumpTheInsultDog
TrihumpTheInsultDog's picture

Yea brilliant. Call me when they start trading energy in gold, until then, lock in profits.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 14:52 | 935651 BigJim
BigJim's picture

'They' almost certainly do trade energy in giold - check out FOFOA's blog.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:12 | 934478 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

Gold bugs aren't going to take over the financial system. The central banks have a lot more of it than we do.

We'll simply crash the system. Move into silver which banks don't control. Or go cash only society. You're wet dream of being super rich and powerful aint going to happen. But neither is your nightmare of being broke and starving.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:26 | 934537 Snidley Whipsnae
Snidley Whipsnae's picture

My efforts all along have been to avoid 'broke and starving'... The system is FUBAR when individual citizens must spend more time on preserving a little capital than being productive in their society, eh?


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:27 | 934545 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Nope.  Central banks hold about 25% of above ground gold.  The rest is held privately.

Gold bugs will be the next upper class.  Silver bugs will be the next oligarchy.  Nothing your empty words can do about it.  Sorry :(

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:42 | 934830 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

Well good luck with all that. You sit with all the banksters fondling your gold when the people dump your ass off in the ditch along with them.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 13:30 | 935289 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Haw-haw, you can't come up with a retort, so you just claim that I will be arbitrarily lumped in with banker scum.

Enjoy your poverty.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:17 | 934227 voltaic
voltaic's picture

Is that a similar threat to the catastrophic consequences of not giving the banksters trillions in free taxpayer money? The financial fear cards play well.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:18 | 934232 Shocker
Shocker's picture

The debt Ceiling is going to be raised, is there really any doubt?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:20 | 934234 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

The top calling troll may have to repent. Not for the trolling but for my call this was a long term intermediate top in pm's. I will put up a chart with breakout and resistance points if i can figure out how. I am old school. I only to use the internet for porn, copyright violations and trading. If i am to lazy to figure it out i will talk you through the.gdx.and.gdxj charts. Gdxj has clearly broken though its downtrend channel but is facing heavy resistance right now between 39 and 40.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:22 | 934241 Soup
Soup's picture

CME Raises Margins for Silver, Copper, Platinum After Today - is priced expected to move down as a result of this?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:25 | 934247 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

Fuck, you're right. I love the smell of desperation in the morning.

The last few times, it has taken AU+AG down, although with progressively smaller net results.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:29 | 934549 Snidley Whipsnae
Snidley Whipsnae's picture

Not when Asian buyers are taking delivery and paying in their faviorite fiat flavor.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:22 | 934244 Wynn
Wynn's picture

Sounds like Mubarak's, "there will be chaos if I resign". Dude, there is already chaos, just like our nation's debt is catasrophic now.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:32 | 934274 living on the edge
living on the edge's picture

I agree. Millions of people are demonstrating, rioting, looting and shooting, fire-bombs everywhere, utilities and internet outages, business and trade at a halt, and Mubarak claims chaos will break out if he leaves. Holy shit!!

This is the ruling elite's mentality.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:24 | 934248 jus_lite_reading
jus_lite_reading's picture

The Fed's Balance Sheet chart indicates a very interesting theory which is about to implode-  why didn't the Fed simply buy up all those Treasuries long ago and save tens of billions on interest payments? That's the $14 Trillion dollar question and the answer is worth my two cents- because they can't...

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:39 | 934317 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture


Actually that's exactly what they will have to do.

Clean currency.


Reset bitchez.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:25 | 934251 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

India is definitely in a bind. The story is starting to unravel because you cannot make food. It has to be produced.

And the man on the street is fuming. If it was not for all the pornography available on their new China-made large screen mobile phones, people would be rioting.

The mobile phone is proving to be the anti-onion. People would rather have talk-time than food.

And they are hocking their gold to gold loaners to buy Chinese crap.

And Foreign expats are spoiling the wage balance cause they have no value for money.

Strange world.



Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:34 | 934282 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

I didn't realize you guys had bought into our consumption based Western World lifestyles, padded with unnecessary crap. Always had some sort of idea that your society was a bit more spiritual?

Or perhaps we were just lied to in school. What would the odds on that be?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:46 | 934361 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

That was then Escape. Before TV, mainly. And before Hollywood forced the slow but steady loosening of censorship, so movies and TV went SEX.

And then the magazines started coming (all the mens health type and th eumpteen womens mags) and every issue frontlined.... you guessed it, SEX.

And of course we know, SEX sells.

Now, cheap visuals of SEX abound and India has slid into a hellish place. 

No tangible ties to the past, no foot in the present and no damn clue about it's future.

Just got to have me some SEX.



Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:05 | 934446 Snidley Whipsnae
Snidley Whipsnae's picture

You were definitely lied to in school if they taught that human nature varies widely from one society to another.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:47 | 934368 TrihumpTheInsultDog
TrihumpTheInsultDog's picture

Wow, I really like getting daily updates about the savages in 3rd world countries.

Do these Indian savages trade sun-dried feces for their prepaid wireless minutes?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:08 | 934462 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

Insult dog, welcome to hell. You've just invited a curse from a billion plus people (yup, I'm channeling them all).

From tomorrow, you will feel all these eruptions on your disgusting tongue, which will swell and blister. Even your mommy, whose basement you clearly live in, won't be able to do much for her brave little internet insulter. In three days, you will not be able to eat or drink anything.

Remember the "savages" selling their dried shit for pre-paid minutes while you suffer.

Oh, and clean your mind. It looks filthy from here.


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:19 | 934508 TrihumpTheInsultDog
TrihumpTheInsultDog's picture

Soon the savages will will be put to good use. Pakistan will do what we all have been hoping and wishing for. A Nuclear gift for the savages.

Ghawar needs to be replenished. Indians can be useful after all once transformed into hydrocarbons. Talk about liquidity.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:13 | 934711 downrodeo
downrodeo's picture

you are a sad, strange little man, and you have my pity...

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:27 | 934770 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

It's goldmiddlefinger. Don't even waste your time responding to this pathetic troll.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 12:34 | 935024 Sisyphus
Sisyphus's picture

Me thinks, it is actually MeTarzanUJane.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 13:31 | 935295 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Good call.

They are likely all sock puppets.  They all have approximately the same posting style.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:58 | 934896 MachoMan
MachoMan's picture

I'm thinking issuing a curse is a savage thing to do...

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:25 | 934254 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

call his tired of always folding to these frauds.....i want to see his cards (and what catastrophic really looks like !)

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:08 | 934459 Snidley Whipsnae
Snidley Whipsnae's picture

Catastrophy might be amusing for a few days or a couple of weeks at most... After that, it is a long, bitter grind, in an attempt to simply survive, that you will not want to participate in.

My parents lived through the great depression.


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:29 | 934262 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

one of the most distressing days of the early fall of 2008, was watching president Bush crawl out of the White House back door.He stopped standing next to H Paulson at that small microphone, his whole demeanor one of a scolded child, he quivered as he said "we must bail out the banks and wall st" questions taken-he literally ran back inside the White House like a beaten dog. Where was the ruff cowboy who could wage war so easily with such bravado??

At that point I knew we were all screwed and the sham of our government was so very plain to see. A president who was given his orders by the shadow government that runs the country.

Obuma, Bush..both puppets to our rulers. So now they will push the debt higher. I expect to see Obuma take a similar walk to tell us all that congress MUST raise the debt or else.

disgust at lack of leadership is the norm.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:10 | 934474 Snidley Whipsnae
Snidley Whipsnae's picture

The real tip off was the 'Patriot Act'... I knew we were definitely screwed when I saw that one.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:24 | 934530 the not so migh...
the not so mighty maximiza's picture

Thats sums it up nicely.   Bush would have been a hero if he said let the banks fail, the US will secure all depositors.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:31 | 934268 youngman
youngman's picture

only 36,000 and unemployment down to 9%.....WTF....government statistics are crap....this is a joke...they are losing the confidence of the world and the Joe on the and silver up today

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:35 | 934295 YHC-FTSE
YHC-FTSE's picture

OMG. The debt ceiling must be raised to prevent default on debt - that statement is so crazy it made my head spin for a bit.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:41 | 934332 living on the edge
living on the edge's picture

You must be a rational, intelligent person.  

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:39 | 934319 plocequ1
plocequ1's picture

Yes, But the futures are up. If loving Bernanke is wrong, Then i dont want to be right. Rally on

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:43 | 934342 the not so migh...
the not so mighty maximiza's picture

Increase my credit card limit or I will blow your f'in head off

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 09:44 | 934347 halelauncher1940
halelauncher1940's picture

I'm tired too of the Bernank crying wolf.  I don't think the fact that we did not raise the debt ceiling would have catatrophic effects on our system.  Might be that the world would say we're trying to get out house in order.  As Tyler says, if we keep raising the debt ceiling, shortly it will become a meaningless non-event.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:42 | 934617 TrihumpTheInsultDog
TrihumpTheInsultDog's picture

The people of Inner-Mongolia are selling their gold to buy iPads.

Strange world.

I just thought this would be of interest to the fine people of ZH. I'll keep you updated, don't worry.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 14:21 | 935519 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Your link said nothing of the sort, fucking liar.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:49 | 934650 Hedgetard55
Hedgetard55's picture

This ceiling must be made of tissue paper because it gets blown through so easily.


Shouldn't it be called a debt floor?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 10:57 | 934677 solgundy
Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:07 | 934702 Head for the Hills
Head for the Hills's picture

I am going to try that line when asking for a raise this year.

"Sir, not giving me an immediate 31.3% raise will

have“Catastrophic” implications for the company.


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:25 | 934762 AldoHux_IV
AldoHux_IV's picture

The best solution to all the debt?  End central banking and reform governments' treasuries as a result-- sort of a reset button.  It wouldn't be destructive to the economy, the only people it would hurt would be those in central banking and the financial cartels, but these cartels were TBTF anyways so it's about time we started dealing with the issue.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:36 | 934798 proLiberty
proLiberty's picture

"Catastrophic" implications if we cannot continue to create air-backed "liquidity" without restraint?  NOT!  ""Catastrophic" if we allow this insanity and theft by dilution to continue!


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 11:47 | 934850 Grand Supercycle
Grand Supercycle's picture

As mentioned numerous times, EURO downside and USD upside will keep recurring.

Please be careful as it should affect some commodity prices.

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 12:11 | 934936 lunaticfringe
lunaticfringe's picture

All your catastrophe belongs to us. Brrriiinggg the pain, boys. Let's have us some catastrophe!

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 14:07 | 935459 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

Bernanke: “Catastrophic” Implications for U.S. Government And Wall Street if $14.3 Trillion Debt Ceiling Not Raised, But Economy Would See Massive Improvement

There, fixed it.


Fri, 02/04/2011 - 15:34 | 935799 rumblefish
rumblefish's picture

is there a rice etf?

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 20:09 | 936485 Buck Johnson
Buck Johnson's picture

I still believe even today that most of the bonds being bought are by the US via offshore and onshore agents.  Because with all the problems that many countries have, why in gods name do they keep investing in our muni's and Treasuries when they could use that money to prop up their banks. 

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