The system can certainly be given some sort of name, but a functioning democracy it’s not. If anything, a democracy is “A system of government in which power is vested in the people”. Makes us wonder how many clients of the 421 foodbanks and counting have voted Conservative and figured they were proudly doing their democratic duty.
Just a day after German President Joachim Gauck shocked his government by remarking in an interview that Germany should at least "consider" demands by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras that the nation pay billions of euros in reparations for the Nazi occupation of Greece, ekathimerini reports that none other than 'helpful' Russians are willing to provide assistance in the World War II claims investigation.
The good news is that there will be no 25-year recession. Nor will there be a depression that will last the rest of our lifetimes.
The bad news: It will be much worse than that.
After the Saudis allegedly halted their air campaign against Yemen's Houthi rebels on April 21 (allegedly because it promptly resumed the very next day to almost no public announcement), the Yemen civil war and the "skirmishes" by Houthi rebels along the border with the world's biggest oil exporter were quickly forgotten. Until this morning, when the Saudi press and social media has been overrun with reports that the Saudi city of Najran was shelled by Houthi mortars, an attack which Saudi advisor to the armed forces Ahmed Asiri said "will not pass without a response".
Facing a pensioner rebellion and a looming payment due to the IMF, Greece’s back is now truly against the wall. As Handelsblatt reports, even if a deal were reached with creditors this weekend, it may now be logistically impossible for Greece to make a €780 million payment scheduled for May 12. Oh well, there's always war reparations...
Despite claiming that its “people’s Uber” service in China, involving private drivers, is simply a type of car-pooling service; the bubblicious company continues to burn its series ZZ financings on legal briefs around the world. That appears to be a total waste when it comes to China as IBTimes reports, police, transport and commercial officials in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou have raided the local offices of online car service company Uber, amid continuing tension in China over the legality of ride-booking apps using private vehicles, which officials say have disrupted the country’s heavily regulated taxi market.
Following yesterday's early MNI rumor that a Chinese QE is being "considered" and which sent the Shanghai Composite surging 3% and led to an initial boost in US stock futures, overnight the PBOC scrambled to once again deny such speculation. Of course, going full "cold Turkey" on Chinese stimulus would be too much for the market to handle, so in a piece by the WSJ also released overnight, the author said the PBOC would pivot from outright QE to mere LTRO, which is also not new and was reported over a week ago here in "China Floats QE Trial Balloon, PBoC May Launch LTROs." In any event, for now at least, Asian stocks are not happy despite Apple's latest blockbuster results, and neither is Europe, with the Stoxx 600 down 1%, and even the E-mini is hugging 2100 unable to levitate on any imminent central bank intervention.
While sentiment towards gold in the West is abysmal - even as gold languishes at record lows when adjusted for inflation - Asian demand remains insatiable. It would be wise for investors to inform themselves as to why this should be so. Demand for gold in Asia is often written off by Westerners as an irrational impulse of uneducated Asian peasant farmers and workers.
Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Abraham Martinez doesn't take kindly to motorcyclists who run stop signs, which is why when Steven Gaydos ignored a red octagon and led Martinez on a high speed chase, he ended up getting shot in the thigh before suffering the wrath of the trooper's flying jumpkick.
"I've said it before, and I'll say it again: In a situation with the police, it's not immediately about who is right or wrong, it's about staying alive,” a former Alabama state trooper says, in an open letter to African Americans across the country.
- Clinton charities will refile tax returns, audit for other errors (Reuters)
- China Warns North Korean Nuclear Threat Is Rising (WSJ), or another country realizes war is the only "exit"
- Shares, euro sag after euro zone PMIs disappoint (Reuters)
- China Manufacturing Gauge Drops to Lowest Level in 12 Months (BBG)
- Deutsche Bank Said to Pay $2.14 Billion in Libor Case (BBG), or roughly a €20,000 per banker "get out of jail" fee
- Brazil’s Petrobras Reports Nearly $17 Billion in Asset and Corruption Charges (WSJ)
- Can This Oil Baron’s Company Withstand Another Quake? (BBG)
- Bad for Q1 GDP: Raytheon sales fall amid weak U.S. defense spending (Reuters)
While the reality is that nobody has a clue what China's actual gold holdings are, the good news is that the answer is coming. As noted above, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has asked the head of the International Monetary Fund to include China's yuan currency in its special drawing rights (SDR) basket. If indeed China is serious about CNY inclusion in the SDR, it will finally have to reveal its cards, which would mean it finally will provide an update, with a 6 year delay, of just what its latest gold holdings are. As such, don't be surprised to wake up one morning to headlines blasting that Chinese gold holdings have gone up by 2x, 3x, 5x or (more x) since 2009, a long-overdue update which will catalyze the next major leg higher in the precious metal.
Noam Chomsky: "The Idea Of A Media Which Does Not Repeat US Propaganda Is Intolerable To American Leaders"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 04/20/2015 21:32 -0400
"Take the New York Times -- the greatest newspaper in the world. Take one example, at the first article that appeared today, that the tentative [nuclear] agreement with Iran was reached. It’s a thinkpiece, by Peter Baker, one of their main analysts. He discusses in it the main reasons to distrust Iran, the crimes of Iran. It’s very interesting to look at. The most interesting one is the charge that Iran is destabilizing the Middle East because it’s supporting militias which have killed American soldiers in Iraq. That’s kind of as if, in 1943, the Nazi press had criticized England because it was destabilizing Europe for supporting partisans who were killing German soldiers."
Either join the disruptors or prepare to be disrupted.
Despite Urges And Threats, Greece Remains Defiant, Won't "Budge On Red Lines" Even As Russia Denies Gas DealSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 04/19/2015 12:06 -0400
Hopes ran high among Europe's unelected bureaucratic oligarchy and the Troika of official creditors that the Greek government, after the ECB openly dropped hints of a Greek IOU currency in the immediate future, would finally relent over the weekend and admit that all of its promises to its voters were a lie and that the Tsipras government would finally pick up where the Samaras government left (and was booted) off. There was even a perfect venue: Washington D.C., where Varoufakis and Obama met for the first time just hours before. The hopes were promptly dashed after Greece, once again, said it would not "renege on election pledges to end austerity measures as creditors pressed for a compromise."