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Obama Nominee, Antonio "Tax Inversion" Weiss Discloses Up To $203 Million In Assets

It appears Lazard's investment banker Antonio Weiss' "help" in tax inversions is not 'unpatriotic' enough to scare President Obama off - as we suspect Weiss' bundling and donating help more than offset any ethical challenges. However, in a somewhat eye-opening financial disclosure, Bloomberg reports that Obama's nominee for undersecretary of Treasury for domestic finance, has between $54 million and $203 million in assets spread across various family trusts and his anticipated compensation in 2014 is between $5 million and $25 million. It's good to know the 'people' are well-represented once again in Washington...



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Neo-Feudalism Has Officially Arrived – Congressman Suggests Building A Moat Around White House

"While the general population is aware something is seriously wrong, people remain extremely confused about the root of the problem. This is because what’s happening all around us isn’t socialism and it isn’t free market capitalism. It is actually a return to something much more ancient and much more oppressive. It is a return to serfdom, neo-fedualism and oligarchy."



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As The "Sanctions War" Heats Up, Will Putin Play His 'Gold Card'?

The topic of ‘currency war’ has been bantered about in financial circles since at least the term was first used by Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega in September 2010. Recently, the currency war has escalated, and a ‘sanctions war’ against Russia has broken out. History suggests that financial assets are highly unlikely to preserve investors’ real purchasing power in this inhospitable international environment, due in part to the associated currency crises, which will catalyse at least a partial international remonetisation of gold. Vladimir Putin, under pressure from economic sanctions, may calculate that now is the time to play his ‘gold card’.



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A Quick Look At Goldman's Takeover Of The US Judicial System: NY Fed Edition

One really just can't make this up. Perhaps the Fed inspector general, when he is done "fixing" the corruption at the NY Fed will be so kind to take a look at the Goldman takeover of the US judicial system next.



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Another Triple-Fat-Finger VIX Day Saves Stocks

Ugly data in Asia, Europe, and US PMI meant US equities opened gap-down... that was unacceptable to 'someone' and so the "most shorted" names were squeezed. However, after 10 minutes the ramp started to fade... and so the big boys 'fat-fingered' VIX and that rescued the dip. That would be fine... but it happened again at 958ET when stocks started to fade again and suddenly VIX was lit up and zoom... stock momentum was ignited and all was well in the world... Broken record? Yes! But clearly someone has to take note of this rigging...



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Stocks Up, Bonds Up, Gold Up, Oil Up, USD Up... Give Up?

For the 25th day in a row (one short of an all-time record), the S&P closed above its 5-day moving-average. Despite dismal Asian, European, and US PMIs, US equity markets sreaked higher at the US Open, tagging yesterday's highs, then stalling when Europe closed. Small Caps led the day as shorts were squeezed once again but Trannies and Russell 2000 remain negative on the week. US Treasury yields dropped notably after European and ended the day 2-3bps lower (with 30Y unch on the week). The USD rose very modestly close-to-cvlose but traded lower thru the EU and US sessions (AUDJPY was in charge of stocks today). Copper dropped on China growth fears but oil, silver, and gold rose on the day (leaving gold +0.5% on the week). HY credit slammed tighter with stocks early then decoupled after EU closed. Dow & S&P close at record highs.



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Brooklyn Resident With Ebola Symptoms Rushed To Bellevue

Joint statement by NYC Health Department and NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation

An individual who came to the United States from Mali, a country with limited Ebola transmission, was taken to HHC Bellevue Hospital Center today. Due to the individual's travel history and symptoms, the patient has been isolated, and an Ebola test will be performed. Results are expected later today.



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The NY Fed's Attempt To Explain That It Is Not A Subsidiary Of Goldman Sachs

The most shocking, if already completely buried, news of the day was that - in yet another confirmation that Goldman Sachs is in charge of the New York Fed - a NY Fed staffer was colluding and leaking confidential, material information to a 29-year-old Goldman vice president, himself a former Federal Reserve employee. This only happened because on the day Carmen Segarra disclosed her 47 hours of "secret Goldman tapes" on This American Life, Goldman executives asked the former Fed staffer where he had gotten what appeared to be confidential information from. To nobody's surprise the answer was: The New York Fed. So as the latter, also known as the biggest hedge fund of the western world with $2.7 trillion in AUM, is scrambling to once again prove it is shocked, shocked, that it has become merely the latest subsidiary of Goldman Sachs, Inc., it released the following statement explaining what "really" happened.



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"We Are Dissolving Into A World Of Planless Incoherence"

Disillusioned with the pillaging and predation of our supposed leaders who have circled away from all constraint, we in the center that cannot hold can only watch things fall apart as the orderly universe operated by the few at the expense of the many dissolves (in Aldous Huxley's phrase) into a world of planless incoherence.



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"Some Folks Lied" - How The Administration Fabricated Obamacare Enrollment Numbers

Two months ago, to much fanfare by the progressive community, HHS, if not Dr. Jonathan Gruber, were delighted to report that as of August 15, Obamacare enrollment had hit 7.3 million sign ups, well above the 7.0 million goal. Then a week ago we learned that "projection mistakes were made" after the "Obama administration revised its estimate for Obamacare enrollment, now saying - with the bruising midterms safely in the rearview mirror - that it expects some 9.9 million people to have coverage through the Affordable Care Act’s insurance exchanges in 2015, millions fewer than outside experts predicted." Fast forward to today when moments ago Bloomberg reported, that "the Obama administration included as many as 400,000 dental plans in a number it reported for enrollments under the Affordable Care Act, an unpublicized detail that helped surpass a goal for 7 million sign-ups."



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5 Reasons The Halliburton-Baker Hughes Deal Is Poisoned

Halliburton’s takeover of Baker Hughes is setting out to be the oil and gas merger of the year. One of the largest such deals in years, it has not, however, met with unanimous approval. From antitrust concerns to management frictions and negative market forces, this has not been a smooth ride. And with a $3.5 billion break-up fee promised to Baker Hughes by Halliburton should the merger fall through, failure would come at a hefty price. Here are five reasons why the deal might still capsize.



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Hugh Hendry Live 1: "It Felt Like The Sun Only Rose To Humiliate Me"

In the first of three interviews with Merryn Somerset Webb, Hugh Hendry, manager of the Eclectica Fund, talks about what it takes to be a good hedge fund manager – and how he learned to stop worrying and love central banks. As he notes, the world is "guilty of the misconstruing of a bull market in equities, for what is actually the ongoing degradation in the soundness of the fiat monetary system."



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Behold The Surge In Real October Earnings

Who says there is no wage growth in real (or nominal terms)? After real wages failed to rise in real terms on 6 of the past 7 months, here courtesy of the BLS is the unprecedented surge to real average hourly earnings that took place in October.



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6 Months Before The Fed Is Said To Hike Rates, It Still Has No Idea How It Will Do That

Tt has become quite clear that the Fed neither has the intention, nor the market mechanism to do any of that, and certainly not in a 3-6 month timeframe. Which may explain the Fed's hawkish words on any potential surge in market vol. After all, if the nearly $3 trillion in excess reserves remain on bank balance sheets for another year, then the only reason why vol could surge is if the Fed lose the faith of the markets terminally. At that point the last worry anyone will have is whether and how the Fed will tighten monetary policy.



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If You Are A US Investor Who Is Bullish Japan, Look Away

Day after day, well-dressed talking heads are paraded on business media and proclaim how cheap Japan is, how Abenomics will work (he promise... if it doesn't we'll have to question everything we believe in), how GDP is backward-looking (so ignore it... and every other economic indicator), and how being long Japanese stocks (of course, hedged back to dollars because you don't want to take the currency risk that Abe is creating) is a "no brainer." The problem with that strategy is... in 2014, the JPY-hedged Japanese stock market investor in the US has not had a daily close in the green year-to-date and is down over 5% for the year... but it gets worse.



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