The mainstream media mouthpieces for the establishment peddle false narratives, disingenuous storylines, and outright propaganda to keep the ignorant masses confused, oblivious to reality, misinformed, and passively submissive to the opinions of highly paid “experts” and captured fiscal authorities. We are living in hard times. The reason tens of millions of Americans are rejecting the establishment and voting for Trump and Sanders is because of economic hardship. Most Americans have been screwed over by the system and are finally getting fed up. They aren’t exactly sure who screwed them, how they were screwed, or how to stop getting screwed, but they are angry. And someone is going to pay. The status quo is beginning to get nervous. Their usual propaganda, scare tactics and misinformation campaigns don’t seem to be working.
Today we find an even more striking example of just how broken the global bond market has become thanks to the ECB because as Reuters writes, Bayer could receive financing from none other than the European Central Bank to help fund its takeover of the world's largest seed company, US-based Monsanto, according to the terms of the ECB's bond-buying program.
In early June the Swiss will be called upon to make a historic decision. Switzerland is the first country worldwide to put the idea of an Unconditional Basic Income (of $2,500 per month for every man, woman, and child for doing absolutely nothing) to a vote and the outcome of this referendum will set a strong precedent and establish a landmark in the evolution of this debate. The main argument of the supporters of this initiative is that it would support the people that will, or already do, lose their jobs to automation and technological progress; a defensive move against “the rise of the robots” as they put it. The promise of a free lunch is by no means a new thing in politics. Getting “something for nothing” is an age-old shiny trinket that has been dangled before the eyes of the public since time immemorial...but at the end of day, someone will have to pay for it.
Ludwig von Mises once wrote, "No one can escape the influence of a prevailing ideology.” The images coming from Venezuela should serve as a potent reminder of how dangerous the ideas of men like Joseph Stiglitz are. Statism and economic interventionism must be rejected, in order for humanity to thrive.
"As SOE restructuring progresses, it will also become more apparent that Chinese banks need to be rescued. We estimate that the total losses in the banking sector could reach CNY8 trillion, equivalent to more than 60% of commercial banks’ capital, 50% of fiscal revenues and 12% of GDP."
The last few weeks have seen 'Project Fear' taken to all new levels by the UK establishment as doom-mongering over a possible Brexit conjure images of post-apocalyptic movies. UK PM Cameron and Chanceller Osborne's latest op-ed tirade warns of 800,000 jobs lost and an "immediate year-long recession" if the Brits exercise their democratic right to vote for sovereignty over tyranny. Judging from the polls, which show Brexit odds tumbling, the fear-mongery is working, however, the markets disagree as forward volatility measures near 2016 highs.
Another week of volatility, but with no real resolution to the burning question of “where do we go next?”
For First Time Since World War II, "Right-Wing, Anti-Immigrant, Euroskeptic" Set To Become President Of AustriaSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 05/22/2016 11:49 -0400
One month ago, pro-European voices in Austria, and all of Europe, were suddenly muted when in the first round of the Austrian presidential election, Norbert Hofer head of Austria Freedom Party (FPO), described as a "Euroskeptic, right-wing, anti-immigrant party" crushed his opposition buoyed by a migration crisis that has heightened fears about employment and security across the continent, and gathered a whopping 35% of the vote leaving the other five legacy candidates far behind. Today, Austria holds the decisive, run-off round between Norbert Hofer and former Greens leader Alexander van der Bellen, which according to preliminary opinions polls was set to be a close vote... although probably not that close.
The Forgotten Depression tells of the slump of 1920-21: high unemployment, collapse in commodity prices, upsurge in bankruptcies and sharp break in stock prices. However, unlike the Great Depression, the 1920 affair was over in 18 months. What explains its brevity? James Grant, publisher of the prestigious Grant's Interest Rate Observer, tells the story of America's last governmentally-untreated depression; relatively brief and self-correcting which gave way to the Roaring Twenties...
The central bank already missed the “window of opportunity” for normalizing rates in a manner that doesn’t hamper the recovery. While the big news for the market was the release of the April 27th FOMC minutes which once again suggested the Federal Reserve may be on a path to hike rates sooner rather than later. The reality is simple, with the markets hovering on critical support, a Presidential election just around the corner and no real evidence of economic recovery, the likelihood of a rate hike in June is approaching zero.
The underlying economic ugliness that triggered the August and January meltdowns emerges once again.
The surge in popularity of the once-fringe anti-establishment Pirate Party comes as little surprise - policies include internet freedom, drug decriminalisation, and open democracy - and recent polls suggest almost half the nation supports them.
After yesterday's algo-driven mad dash to close the S&P green both for the day and for the year following Fed minutes that came in shocking hawkish, the selling has continued overnight, led by the commodity complex as rate hike fears have pushed oil back down some 2% from yesterday's 7 month highs, which in turn has dragged global stocks lower to a six-week low, while pushing bond yields higher across developed nations as the market suddenly reprices the probability of a June/July rate hike.
On 23 June 2016, this British citizen will be voting to leave the European Union. To me it’s clear: the EU has not only become too big for its own good, it’s too big to do hardly anything good. Back in 1975 when the UK first confirmed membership in the EU (when it was called the European Economic Community), it made sense. But the EU didn’t turn into a peaceful, efficient, multi-national trading bloc that enables commerce and prosperity. Rather it has become an ever-expanding, unaccountable bureaucracy ruling over vastly disparate nations who are increasingly at odds with one another.
There is a great deal that is wrong with mainstream economic commentary, starting with its unwavering devotion to orthodox economics and unshakable faith in their “stimulus.” No matter how little is actually stimulated there is never any doubt that the media will simultaneously forget the last one while lavishing praise on the next one. It is, however, the actual economic commentary itself that may be the most damaging. Because nothing works, every news story is printed from the shallowest, narrowest perspective. It is a grave disservice to the public and journalism.