Reuters

Russia, Iran Rack Up Gains In "Fiercest Syrian Fighting Yet"

Last week, we said the following about the next stage of Syria’s civil war: “In case it wasn’t clear enough what was set to happen soon after the Russian air force had spent a few days softening up anti-regime positions on the ground, allow us to spell it out: with the opposition on the run thanks to days of aerial bombardment, Iran will now send in the Hezbollah/Shiite militia/Quds clean up crew, who will personally ensure that whoever is left in the wake of the Su-34 strikes is swiftly eliminated at close range." As Retuers reports, that is exactly what's unfolding.

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“Tis the part of the wise man to keep himself today for tomorrow, and not venture all his eggs in one basket” - Cervantes in Don Quixote in 1605

The key to successful long term investing is diversification and owning a range of different quality assets.

Gold has been shown to enhance returns and to reduce overall volatility over the long term. This was clearly seen during the financial crisis when gold was one of the very few assets to surge in value.

Frontrunning: October 12

  • Central Bankers Urge Fed to Get On With Interest-Rate Increase (WSJ)
  • Bond Market Casualties Leading Biggest S&P 500 Revival Since '11 (BBG)... on hopes of more easing
  • U.S. Patrols to Test China’s Pledge on South China Sea Islands (WSJ)
  • Merkel Under Fire: German Conservatives Deeply Split over Refugees (Spiegel)
  • Assault Weapons Ban Before U.S. Supreme Court (NBC)
  • Hedge Funds Are Playing 'Dangerous Game' With Copper (BBG)

Moscow Demands Britain Explain "Green Light To Shoot Down Russian Jets"

The chances of escalation from a proxy war to outright war just went to 11 on the Spinal Tap amplifier of sabre-rattling. A day after British and NATO pilots were reportedly given the green light to take drastic action against Russian fighter jets if they come under threat during missions over Iraq, Interfax reports that the Russian Defense Ministry has demanded clarification. Senior defence sources say it is just a matter of time before our fighters are involved in a deadly confrontation with Russian jets.

Japanese Firms Admit Abenomics Failed, Government Now "Left Trying To Redistribute Wealth"

Do not believe in official statistics, Japanese retailers seem to be saying, as they cut earnings forecasts and warn of lackluster consumer spending, a key growth engine for Japan at a time when exports and factory output are stalling. Despite government statistics claining a 2.9% rise in household spending, Reuters reports Japanese retailers exclaimed "Consumer spending has ground to a halt," as Japan heads for a quintuple dip recession. Amid falling wages and higher costs, on apparel maker warned "shoppers are tightening their purse strings." The government's initial growth strategy did not really expand the pie, "now the government is simply left trying to redistribute wealth."

The G-30 Group Of Central Bankers Warn They Can "No Longer Save The World"

"Central banks alone cannot be relied upon to deliver all the policies necessary to achieve macroeconomic goals. Governments must also act and use the policy-making space provided by conventional and unconventional monetary policy measures. Failure to do so would be a serious error and would risk setting the stage for further economic disturbances and imbalances in the future."

The Devil's Dictionary Of Post-Crisis Finance, Part 1

Austerity: Also known as “sado-fiscalism”. A forlorn attempt to stave off government bankruptcy.

...

Keynesians: Economists “who hear voices in the air (and) are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back” (John Maynard Keynes).

Trump's Success Exposes America's Winner-Loser Society

Everywhere you look, You feel a tension in America now between “us” and “them.” However much Americans espouse the mantra of 'whoc wants to succeed, can', that belief is shakier than we let on. Many Americans increasingly feel, deep down, that the game is rigged. That the people who run this country - the economic, political and intellectual elites - get all the advantages. Average Joe can’t win.

"The Biggest Protest This Country Has Seen In Years" - Quarter Million Germans Protest Obama "Free Trade" Deal

250,000 Germans marched in Berlin today in protest against the planned "free trade" deal between Europe and the United States which they say is anti-democratic and will lower food safety, labor and environmental standards.  "This is the biggest protest that this country has seen for many, many years," Christoph Bautz, director of citizens' movement Campact told protesters in a speech.

Obama Weighs "Syria Retreat" As White House Ends Training Of Moderate Rebels

Last weekend we called Obama's latest failed attempt to replace Syria's president for what it is: "this is shaping up to be the most spectacular US foreign policy debacle since Vietnam." Today, less than a week later, we have confirmation that this was correct after first Bloomberg reported that "some top White House advisers and National Security Council staffers are trying to persuade President Barack Obama to scale back U.S. engagement" in Syria, and then a report from the NYT that "the Obama administration has ended the Pentagon’s $500 million program to train and equip Syrian rebels." And just like that Obama folds, again.

China Threatens The U.S., Says Will "Not Tolerate Violations Of Its Territorial Waters"

"We will never allow any country to violate China's territorial waters and airspace in the Spratly Islands, in the name of protecting freedom of navigation and overflight," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular news briefing."We urge the related parties not to take any provocative actions, and genuinely take a responsible stance on regional peace and stability," Hua said in response to a question about possible U.S. patrols.