• Sprott Money
    01/30/2015 - 08:31
    The quick-and-easy way to categorize the retail sector of the U.S. economy would be to use the metaphor of “falling off a cliff”. However, such a characterization would be overly simplistic. A...

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The Biggest "Hamilton Oil Shock" In History

The most cautionary episode to today was the 62% drop in oil prices from November 1985 to July 1986, although the Hamilton measure is much smaller. Similar to today, most believed this would prove to be a boost to GDP growth. Indeed, the consensus was forecasting average 2.3% GDP growth to increase 0.3pp, but it actually fell 0.9pp (based on the as reported GDP data, third release). This downward surprise continued for three quarters.



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"They're Out Of Their Minds" Gorbachev Slams US 'Triumphalism' For "Turning Cold War 'Hot'"

In November of last year, Mikhail Gorbachev first warned "the world is on the brink of a new Cold War." Then around the turn of the year he escalated his warning, fearing "a war of this kind could lead to a nuclear war," hoping that no one "loses their nerve in this overheated situation." Today, in an interview with Russian news agency Interfax, the 83-year-old former Soviet leader, asks "have they lost their minds?" raging that "the U.S. has already dragged us into a new Cold War, trying to openly implement its idea of triumphalism," warning that "the 'cold' war will "lead to a 'hot' war," concluding "The U.S. has been totally 'lost in the jungle' and is dragging us there as well."



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Syriza's Original 40 Point Manifesto

The daily bulletin of Italy’s Communist Refoundation Party published today the apparently official program of the Greek coalition of the left, Syriza. Here the 40 points of the Syriza program...



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According To Citi, Small Hedge Funds May Have No Choice But To Become Paper Traders On Twitter

“Poor performance will be most acutely felt by small hedge fund firms,” Sandy Kaul, global head of business advisory services at Citi. “These funds simply did not generate enough performance-fee revenues in 2014 to cover their gap.” In other words, "small" hedge funds, those who tried valiantly for 1, 2 or more years to generate alpha, and failed, well they can continue to manage "small" amounts of money, however it will be of the paper variety. Which they are welcome to do on the one venue which has taken over for Yahoo Finance as the sole place where everyone pretends to not only trade but certainly never have even a single losing day: Twitter.



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Alexis Tsipras Most Outrageous Outburst Yet?

"We should not accept or recognize the government of neo-Nazis in Ukraine"



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Oil Hasn't Been This 'Cheap' Since 1988

The last time an ounce of gold could buy 29 barrels of oil was 1988... "cheap" is relative.



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Thursday Humor: The Pros & Cons Of Fracking

Gas prices are plummeting across America thanks in part to the country doubling its daily oil exports, which is made possible by chemical fracturing technology that scientists have said wreaks havoc on the environment. Here are some pros and cons of fracking:



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3 Things - Fed Mistake, ECB QE, Housing

It is my expectation, unless these deflationary trends reverse course in very short order, that if the Fed raises rates it will invoke a fairly negative response from both the markets and economy.  However, I also believe that the Fed understands that we are closer to the next economic recession than not.  For the Federal Reserve, the worst case scenario is being caught with rates at the "zero bound" when that occurs. For this reason, while raising rates will likely spark a potential recession and market correction, from the Fed’s perspective this might be the “lesser of two evils.”



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WTF Chart Of The Day: Baltic Dry Index Crashes To Lowest In 29 Years

Quietly behind the scenes - and not at all reflective of a collapsing global economy (because that would break the narrative of over-supply and pent-up demand) - The Baltic Dry Index plunged over 5% today to 632... That is the lowest absolute level for the global shipping rates indicator since August 1986...



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After VISA's Stock Split, The Most Important Company In The Dow Jones "Industrial" Average Is...

As if they did not already have their tentacles in everything else already, TBTF, and depositor-insured hedge fund Goldman Sachs is about to become the most heavily-weighted component of the Dow Jones "Industrial" Average. Following Visa's moments ago announced 4:1 stock split, Goldman will now represent just shy of 7.00% of the DJIA.



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CME Hikes Silver Margins By 11%

In a day in which silver was pounded the most since September 2013 without any fundamental reason to explain this weakness (aside for the extensively discussed Precious Metals-USDJPY funding pair trade, so favored by the central banks to punish gold/silver while pushing risk higher), many are wondering: what was the reason for this crash? Well, in a day in which Yellen now openly advised Democrats in a non-public setting about Fed policy, is it that ludicrous to assume that someone leaked the following announcement made after the close by the CME, namely that silver margins were just hiked by 11%?



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Unleash The Veto: Senate Passes Keystone XL Pipeline Bill

Following Congress, The Republican-led Senate just passed The Keystone XL Pipeline Bill - as expected:

*SENATE PASSES BY 62-36 BILL TO APPROVE KEYSTONE, DEFYING OBAMA

Nine Democrats joined all of the Republicans who were present in supporting the legislationNow, it is time for President Obama to unleash The Veto Pen...



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Janet Yellen Now Advises Democrats What The Fed's Monetary Policy Plans Are

The WTF moment has arrived: the moment when the Chair of the "independent" Fed tells an audience of Democrats, away from the public, just what her plans for monetary policy are in private:

YELLEN TOLD DEMOCRATS NO RATE INCREASE `IMMEDIATELY': SCHUMER

We knew some Fed member would speak today to boost stocks but had no idea it would be Yellen herself.



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Cramer Does It Again: Box Is "Home-Run" In "Remarkably Healthy Market"

On Monday - after the close - after a big dead-cat-bounce off the post-Greek-election overnight lows, none other than CNBC's Jim Cramer announced to his dwindling audience that "he's calculated that it's actually a remarkably healthy" market... The Dow is now over 300 points lower, despite his showing investors the "eight signs of a healthy market." However, it is his energetic pitch for the looming Shake Shack IPO on the heels of the "home-run" Box IPO (which is now below its release price and down well over 20% from the highs in 3 days) that, we suspect, confirms the utter collapse of his listening or viewing audience (no matter how 'wrong' the surveys are).



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