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Fukushima Deteriorates Again As Steam Now Rising From Reactor 1 For First Time, Including All Other Reactors; Reactor 5 Cooling FailsSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 03/23/2011 - 22:25
Not an hour passes without something material developing in Fukushima. Just out from NHK: all four broken reactors are now smoking. While 2, 3 and 4 have all issued smoke or steam at some point in the past, it is now Reactor 1's turn. From NHK: "An NHK helicopter crew has confirmed what appears to be steam rising from No. 1, 2, 3 and 4 reactor buildings at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. This is the first time that steam has been seen coming out of the No.1 reactor. The helicopter crew was filming from a location more than 30 kilometers from the plant shortly before 7:00 AM on Thursday." It was not all bad news: "The Tokyo Electric Power Company says that black smoke seen rising from the No.3 reactor building on Wednesday was no longer visible as of 6:00 AM Thursday." It is unclear if the radiation level had dropped enough to where workers could resume their attempt to reactive the cooling stations at Fukushima.
Goldman's Dominic Wilson has just released his magnum opus analysis on the situation in Japan and its aftermath. Unlike the lunatic drivel disseminated each and every week by GSAM's Jim O'Neill, which would interpret the imminent collapse of the Earth into a neutron star as the most bullish event in the (soon to be over) history of mankind, this report is actually one of more biased we have read from the Goldman strategists. That said, the natural bias to spin everything in a positive light still dominates the report (to which we retort: why not just blow up unpopulated pieces of America and rebuild them over and over: it does miracles for the Chinese "GDP" - it should work just as well in the US - plus Krugman would be in a constant state of Keynesian extasy). We obviously disagree: never before has there been the added precedent of nuclear fallout, or a pyschological intangible, to the mostly superficial infrastructural repairs that have to be undertaken. Goldman does acknowledge this as follows: "The ongoing nuclear risk at Fukushima has the potential to magnify the impact in other ways, although at the time of writing these risks seem to be fading." Based on what? Manipulated data reporting out of Japan, TEPCO and everyone else who is either guilty of strategic mismanagement, or is desperate to avoid a worldwide panic. It is this type of rushing to conclusions based on a complete lack of facts, that drives objective market observers furious with blind rage at the idiocy of the authors (and yes, idiots is what Sean Corrigan called all those who only see the upside in the Japanese catastrophe and ignore the massive human, economic and financial downside). Yet for all those who can bottle their rage for 15 minutes, we recommend reading the enclosed report as it is the very best that the Kool Aid crowd can serve at this point. Which, when applying some common sense, is not very much.
I've got a funny feeling that all the ramp-and-camp, extend-and-pretend POMO games propping up stocks are about to stop working. That would of course trigger a long, deep slide in equities, because as we all know, it's the Federal Reserve's games which have goosed the market to its current lofty heights. The market's confidence in the Bernanke Put--that is, the belief that the Fed will never let stocks decline-- remains supremely undimmed...I've got a funny feeling that it's lose-lose time for the Fed's games. here's the basic game plan: inject tens of billions of free money into the "risk trade," i.e. equities and commodities, ramp the futures markets when volume and liquidity are low, and crush the U.S. dollar. It's practically a perfect inverse correlation: when the dollar tanks, stocks move higher, and when stocks hit bottom then the dollar peaks. Think see-saw: when one tops out, the other hits bottom, and vice versa.
Whatever one thinks about the near-criminal strategy taking place behind the scenes as to how Japan is handling the bailout, one thing is certain: the 50 Tepco workers who are currently laboring at Fukushima, doing all they can to restore the plant back to life, even at the cost of their own lives, are doing a tremendous service to their fellow citizens (futile or otherwise), and deserve to be called heroes. The Mail has compiled what little information is available about these impromptu martyrs, of whom five are believed to have already died and 15 are injured while others have said they know the radiation will kill them, in a piece that everyone should read, especially those who are wondering just who it is that is doing everything in their power to offset Hitachi's criminal conduct in the construction of the power plant as disclosed earlier. "The darkness is broken only by the flashing torchlight of the heroes who stayed behind. These first images of inside the stricken Fukushima Dai-Ichi power plant reveal the terrifying conditions under which the brave men work to save their nation from full nuclear meltdown. The Fukushima Fifty - an anonymous band of lower and mid-level managers - have battled around the clock to cool overheating reactors and spent fuel rods since the disaster on March 11."
As predicted when we outlined the imminent surge in TEPCO CDS nearly two weeks ago, when the utility was trading still in the double digits, we speculated that the Japanese government will have no choice but to step in and rescue the pre-collapse utility. Indeed, that is now reality, with Reuters reporting that "the Japanese government is looking at paying off a portion of the compensation Tokyo Electric Power Co will owe to evacuated residents, local farmers and others directly hit by the emergency at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant." The question we have is how much did Japan bulls such as Buffett purchase in TEPCO stock in advance of this latest pseudo-socialization in which taxpayers once again bail out private shareholders, and just how much of his decision to acquire said stock would have been predicated on the knowledge another taxpayer-to-right pocket transfer was imminent.
PORTUGUESE PARLIAMENT REJECTS GOVERNMENT'S DEFICIT-CUTTING PLAN
PORTUGAL'S PARLIAMENT BACKS RESOLUTION AGAINST GOVERNMENT PLAN
Next up: government resignation, crisis, bail out, etc. You know the drill.
What will happen to the U.S. economy and the dollar in the near term? Will inflation increase dramatically? What is the outlook for gold, and where should you put your money? BIG GOLD asked a world-class panel of economists, authors, and investment advisors what they expect for the future. Caution: strong opinions ahead...
From Market News: "Portugal's President Anibal Cavaco Silva is prepared to accept the resignation of Prime Minister Jose Socrates and is getting ready to call an election to choose a new government, Portuguese daily Jornal Publico reported on its website Wednesday evening....The political instability that would ensue from a collapse of the government, combined with market tensions that have pushed Portuguese ten-year bond yields to a euro-era high above 8%, seem likely to increase the pressure on Lisbon to seek a financial aid package from the European Financial Stability Facility and the International Monetary fund." Look for Portuguese, Irish and all out toxic fallout (pardon the pun) to be bought with impunity by JC Trichet as the entire market goes bidless.
Even as the spin continues by both the media and nuclear energy advocates that the dangers from Fukushima are overblown, calculations done behind the scenes indicate that Fukushima and Chernobyl are actually very comparable in terms of radioactive particulate release, and in some cases, such as Cesium 137, Fukushima is already runrating as a worse catastrophe than Chernobyl. From Reuters: "The release of two types of radioactive
particles in the first 3-4 days of Japan's nuclear crisis is estimated
to have reached 20-50 percent of the amounts from Chernobyl in 10 days,
an Austrian expert said on Wednesday. Based on measurements made at monitoring
stations in Japan and the United States, Wotawa said the iodine released
from Fukushima in the first three-four days was about 20 percent of
that released from Chernobyl during a ten-day period. For Caesium-137, the figure could amount to some 50 percent." In other words, run rating the release of Cesium for a 10 day period, leaked radioactive Cesium is now about 120-150% of what it was during the full blow reactor explosion experiencing during Chernobyl. But yes, aside from the facts, watering the reactor that are certainly melting down (if haven't done so already) should surely have great benefits.
Zero Hedge has been updating our readers periodically with Fukushima radiation dispersion maps as they become available. Below we present the latest one out of the French meteorological office, which presents the global nature of the radioactive fallout, which at last check hit a record 500 millisieverts by Reactor 2 and was climbing, which unfortunately means the subsequent dispersion cloud will be even more potent, and so forth, and so forth, until an actual practical resolution, instead of just propaganda, is implemented.
Judging by the incomprehensible action in both WTI and gold, both of which are surging, it appears the stock market may not have priced in the full impact of Bernanke's Put on the Armageddon. And after all, what disaster, man made or otherwise, can not be circumvented through the printing of a few [...]illion in new linen-cotton forms of monetary exchange.
- INTERIOR MINISTER ELI ISHAI SAYS SITUATION DETERIORATING
- ISHAI SAYS ISRAEL MAY HAVE TO ACT IF DETERIORATION CONTINUES
- ISHAI LINKS JERUSALEM BOMBING TO ITAMAR STABBING, GAZA VIOLENCE
- ISHAI SPEAKS ON ISRAEL ARMY RADIO
Several days ago there were a few rather amusing anecdotes in the blogosphere that just because Sprott filed a selling shareholder shelf in PSLV, the ETF was about to crash and burn. What was not disclosed is that in 2011 there have been about 200 comparable shelves filed for public companies, yet nobody called for the imminent anihilation of 40% of the S&P. Stunningly, just because someone requests the right to sell an asset they own when said asset is trading at all time highs, apparently does not mean they intent to exercise said right. To wit: the premium to NAV for the Eric Sprott physical silver ETF just hit an all time record of 23%. We are confident that this is due to JPMorgan being massively long the metal, and also because anywhere one walks these days, physical silver lying on the ground is more prevalent than dog excrement. Also, those who decided to play the premium-NAV compression trade, are advised to promptly close it unless, of course, they are a TBTF bank.