Solutions Start With Innovation And Transparency

Just as everyone supports "solutions" until the solutions crush their share of the swag, everybody supports innovation and transparency until it disrupts their share of the swag. Then they scramble to hide the ugly truths and suppress the spread of threatening innovation. This parallel rejection of swag-crushing solutions and innovation/transparency by vested interests is not coincidental: innovation and transparency are the heart of real solutions.

Canary Meet Coal Mine: Miami Condo Sales Are "Cooling Down"

We have “early signs of new demand slowing” while “construction pricing is busting budgets beyond feasibility” in a market where “speculation abounds” in land pricing. When framed against a very unfavorable foreign exchange dynamic for the market’s most important buyers, the situation really couldn’t get much more precarious.

Who's Isolated Now? Kazakhstan Authorities Announce Plans To De-Dollarize Economy

Following the approval of the government, Kazakhstan's Central Bank has announced it plans to de-dollarize its economy by the end of 2016. The goal is to avoid the macroeconomic instability that the USD creates and to give priority to Tenge in trade agreements (banning price designations in foreign exchange). Coming just 2 weeks after the ratification of the $100 billion BRICS bank, and Russia's creation of a SWIFT-alternative, one wonders - as one by one foreign nations agree non-dollar trade and swap agreements - who is becoming 'isolated' now?

Markets Stumble After China Slashes Growth Target For 2015, Warns "Downward Pressure Growing"

You wouldn't know it if you looked at the price of oil, but arguably the world's largest economy just unloaded a kitchen sink of fears, warnings, and downgrades on its economy; the most notable being:

*CHINA SETS 2015 GDP GROWTH TARGET AT ABOUT 7% (from 7.5% in 2014)

In a report to be delivered to the government tonight, Premier Li Keqiang warned China may face more economic difficulties in 2015 vs 2014 and downward economic pressure is still growing (despite Western 'analysts' proclaiming China fixed). The currency is weakening on the news and AsiaPac stocks are lower and as Chinese stocks open lower (despite hints at more easing), millions of newly minted "can't lose" Chinese investors begin to worry.

"There’s Going To Be Chaos" - What Is The Worst-Case Outcome Of Today's Supreme Court Obamacare Hearing

Today, for the second time since 2012, the fate of Obamacare lies in the hands of the Supreme Court, and like last time, it will likely be all about Justice John Roberts ' decision. Later today, the US Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the case of King v. Burwell, the latest challenge to Obamacare, and one that could potentially leave it gutted from an unexpected direction. As a result, nearly eight million Americans could lose their health insurance depending on how the Supreme Court interprets four words in the "Affordable" Care Act.

US Ambassador To Cyprus Withdrawn After Diplomatic Blunder Involving Nemtsov Murder

US Ambassador to Cyprus, John Koenig, was forced to issue a clarifying statement on Monday, after a series of tweets on Sunday, about President Anastasiades’ recent Russia visit, sparked a hostile reaction from Anastasiades, the Archbishop, the political parties and journalists. As RedPillTimes reports, Koenig has been promptly "relieved of duty" after he posted on his Twitter account what was essentially a clever ploy to link Cyprus President Anastasiades (who recently visited Moscow) to the assassination of Boris Nemtsov. Anastasiades was furious, calling Koenig's tweet "exceedibly undiplomatic," adding that it "creates 'icy' bilateral relations."

 

Guest Post: Yesterday Was A Very Sad Day For America

The nation has been lulled by the media, which is our government’s main weapon against its own people, to believe the doublespeak.  Patriotism is terrorism and terrorism is patriotism.  And so we go, now faster and faster, down the septic drain into an underworld that has been described in great detail by those who have a sense for what the future will bring; Orwell, Rand, Hobbes and Plato. Where or how it ends nobody knows but we know it will be a ‘them’ and ‘us’ kind of world.  Where the haves, have everything and the have nots have nothing.  We are well on our way, just look around. 

Putin Condemns "Brazen Murder Of Boris Nemtsov" As "Politically Motivated"

Vladimir Putin has broken his public silence since Boris Nemtsov's murder and, perhaps unsurprisingly, stirred up further controversy. While condemning the "brazen murder of Boris Nemtsov right in the center of the capital," WSJ reports, he told senior Police officials to "finally rid Russia of shame and tragedy" of politically-motivated murders. As The Guardian notes, this seemingly contradicts theories the former deputy prime minister was shot over a domestic or business row.

The Global War On Pensioners

Pensioners are under attack. With yields depressed across asset classes, public pension funds in the U.S. are diving into risky investments in order to justify clinging to unrealistic investment rate assumptions. In Europe, low rates are causing corporations to adopt lower discount rates to determine the present value of their pension liabilities, dramatically increasing EU pension deficits. While in Greece, the government is robbing the public purse to make good on its commitments to the IMF.

IMF Director Admits: Greek Bailout Was "To Save German & French Banks"

For the first time in public, though practically the entire world assumed it, an official from The IMF has admitted that the various Greek bailouts were not for The Greeks at all... "They gave money to save German and French banks, not Greece,” Paolo Batista, one of the Executive Directors of International Monetary Fund told Greek private Alpha TV on Tuesday. As KeepTalkingGreece reports, Batista then went on to strongly criticized not only the euro zone and the European Central Bank but also the IMF and the Fund’s managing Director Christine Lagarde for defending Europe much too much...

NFIB Chief Economist Warns "Bubble In US Net Worth Has Reached Unsustainable Heights"

"The relationship of U.S. net worth to GDP appears to have reached unsustainable heights," warns NFIB Chief Economist William Dunkelberg, adding that a massive decline in the value of assets is "more likely" than a massive increase in GDP. Logically this seems unavoidable, unless you believe that we are truly wealthier now, even with an economy that is delivering a rather poor performance (historically weak output and sales growth) in real terms. It would seem not to be 'whether' we will adjust but when.

Hillary Clinton's "Personal" Emails To Be Subpoenaed

In the aftermath of the revelations that Hillary Clinton had exclusively used a personal email account to conduct state correspondence with diplomatic leaders around the globe and pretty much everyone else, it was only a matter of time before the subpoenas started flying. That time is now and as WaPo reports, the "House investigative committee is preparing to send out subpoenas later Wednesday to gather a deeper look into former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton’s nearly exclusive use of personal e-mails to do her official business as the government’s top diplomat, according to people familiar with the probe."

Nasdaq 5,000 Is Different This Time... But Not In A Good Way!

So today what is different is not the Wall Street spiel that Nasdaq is anchored by the likes of Apple rather than Webvan. Since the two days of March 9 and 10 in the year 2000 when the Nasdaq closed over the 5,000, the financial markets have been converted into central bank managed gambling halls and the global economy has bloated beyond recognition by 15 years of non-stop financial repression. Back then, a few hundred stocks were wildly over-valued based on monetizing eyeballs; now the entire market is drastically overvalued owing to the false financial market liquidity generated by $14 trillion of central bank asset monetization - mostly public debt - since the turn of the century. As a result, the global financial system and economy are orders of magnitude more fragile and vulnerable to collapse than they were 15 years ago.

On February 7, 2009 Bernanke Admitted What It Was All About

"I am somewhat concerned, at least given the way things stand now, about the market reaction. First, the lack of details will create some uncertainty and concern, particularly because there’s not a great deal said about the “problem children,” the BAC and Citi. Secondly, I think the markets will be disappointed in the following sense: As I will describe, this is a real truth-telling kind of plan. It’s fundamentalist. It’s not about giving the banks a break. It’s not about using accounting principles  to give them backdoor capital. It’s very much market-oriented and “tough love.” And I think we all will like that. I like that. But the banks’ shareholders aren’t going to be thrilled about it."

Some Of The Best Bearish Signals Are Failed Bullish Ones...

And, as NewEdge's Brad Wishak points out, that's exactly what we are seeing play out on the NYSE here. Being the world's largest exchange by market capitalization ($16 trillion), failures like this are typically worth paying attention to...