http://www.zerohedge.com/fullrss2.xml/news/%20kharty%40globalfinancialdata.com en President Trump Speaks At Memorial Day Ceremony - Live Feed http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/president-trump-speaks-memorial-day-ceremony-live-feed <p>In his first public event since returning to Washington, D.C. from an overseas trip,<br /> President Trump is scheduled to <strong>give remarks during a Memorial Day wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery</strong> on Monday morning.</p> <p>Trump has been tweeting his support of the nation's bravest already...</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Honoring the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to America. Home of the free, because of the brave. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MemorialDay?src=hash">#MemorialDay</a>????????</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/869164414662049793">May 29, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Today we remember the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in serving. Thank you, God bless your families &amp; God bless the USA!</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/869170351049240576">May 29, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">I look forward to paying my respects to our brave men and women on this Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery later this morning.</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/869170615881793536">May 29, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>Live Feed - scheduled to begin at 10:55 ET</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/dyxXEfNcys0" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1084" height="707" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170527_hero_0.jpg?1496065540" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/president-trump-speaks-memorial-day-ceremony-live-feed#comments American people of German descent Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Human Interest Politics of the United States The Apprentice Trump United States Washington D.C. WWE Hall of Fame Mon, 29 May 2017 14:45:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596876 at http://www.zerohedge.com How To Buy And Sell Gold And Silver Using Bitcoin http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/how-buy-and-sell-gold-and-silver-using-bitcoin <p><strong><em>Submitted by Ronan Manly, <a href="http://www.bullionstar.com">BullionStar.com</a></em></strong></p> <p><span style="font-size:14px;"><span style="color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif;">Given the very strong price appreciation of Bitcoin recently, Bitcoin holders who are thinking of diversifying or taking some profits on their Bitcoin positions may be interested to know that in addition to transacting in US Dollars, Singapore Dollars, and Euros, BullionStar also accepts Bitcoin as a payment option for its precious metals products, and has done so since May&nbsp;2014.</span></span></p> <p><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user227218/imageroot/2017/05/29/Bitcoin%20May%202017.png" style="width: 641px; height: 522px;" /></p> <p><strong>Bitcoin Price in US Dollars, May 2017</strong></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Using the BullionStar website, customers can quickly and efficiently purchase gold bars and gold coins, as well as silver bars and silver coins using Bitcoin. Customers can also sell gold and sell silver to BullionStar and receive settlement proceeds in Bitcoin.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">The maximum transaction size for a purchase order using Bitcoin is currently set by BullionStar at BTC 200 per transaction. There is no minimum transaction size for a purchase order using Bitcoin. For sell orders that settle in Bitcoin, the standard maximum transaction size is currently 30 BTC per transaction, but this can be higher upon discussion with BullionStar.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Bitcoin as a currency is also fully integrated into the BullionStar website. Once you select Bitcoin as the default currency from the Currency drop-down menu at the top right hand side of the BullionStar website homepage, Bitcoin becomes the default transactional currency within the website, and furthermore, all spot prices and associated charts and all product prices on the website will be displayed in terms of BTC.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">If logged into your Account, your &lsquo;My Vault Balance&rsquo; and &lsquo;Cash Balance&rsquo; will also be displayed in BTC. Account history and &ldquo;My Vault Portfolio&rdquo; are also displayed in BTC once Bitcoin is selected as the default currency option.</span></p> <h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; clear: both; font-family: Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 1.3; font-size: 18px; margin-top: 22px; margin-bottom: 22px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48);"><span style="font-size:18px;">Buying Gold and Silver using Bitcoin</span></h3> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">To purchase precious metals on the BullionStar website using Bitcoin:</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">1, Select Bitcoin in the currency drop-down menu at the upper right hand side of the BullionStar homepage. This will display all product prices in Bitcoin, and will also automatically populate Bitcoin as the default payment method in the online Checkout tool.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user227218/imageroot/2017/05/29/Bitcoin%20currency.png" style="width: 400px; height: 588px;" /></span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(34, 14, 16); font-size: 12px; font-style: italic;">Select Bitcoin&nbsp;in the Currency Dropdown menu</strong></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">2. From the &lsquo;<a href="https://www.bullionstar.com/buy/" style="font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;"><em style="box-sizing: border-box;">Buy Gold and Silver</em></a>&rsquo; menu option, select the precious metal products you wish to buy. Product prices will be displayed in Bitcoin (BTC).</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">For example, if you are interested in purchasing a PAMP minted 1 ounce gold bar, select &lsquo;Gold Bars&rsquo; from the drop-down menu and the price in Bitcoin of a 1 ounce PAMP gold bar will be displayed in BTC, which, at the time of writing was BTC 0.675530.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user227218/imageroot/2017/05/29/PAMP%20Bitcoin.png" style="width: 650px; height: 341px;" /></span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(34, 14, 16); font-size: 12px; font-style: italic;">BullionStar Product Prices displayed in BTC</strong></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">3. Fill in the quantity of the product you wish to buy. Then click the green &ldquo;Add to Cart&rdquo; button to add the selected product to your Shopping Cart.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">4. Repeat Step 3 to add other products to your Shopping Cart, or if finished shopping, select the green &lsquo;Checkout&rsquo; button towards the top&nbsp;right hand side&nbsp;of the screen.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">5. In the subsequent Checkout screen, Bitcoin will appear as the default payment method. Select your preferred &lsquo;Delivery Method&rsquo; of either &lsquo;Vault Storage&rsquo;, &lsquo;Shipping by Courier&rsquo;, or &lsquo;Personal Collection (Pick-up)&rsquo;</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user227218/imageroot/2017/05/29/Checkout%20Bitcoin.png" style="width: 650px; height: 414px;" /></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(34, 14, 16); font-size: 12px; font-style: italic;">Checkout Screen with BTC as the default payment option</strong></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Ensure that the order total is less than or equal the maximum transaction size for a purchase order of&nbsp;<strong style="font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box;">BTC 200</strong>&nbsp;per transaction.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Fill in your customer information, click the check boxes to indicate that you agree with the&nbsp;Terms and Conditions, and that you agree that the order is binding, then click the &ldquo;Confirm&rdquo; button to place your order.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">6. After clicking &ldquo;Confirm&rdquo;, an order confirmation will appear on the screen. This order confirmation details your order number, the products ordered, the order date, your customer information, and the Bitcoin payment information, i.e. the payment amount in BTC and the unique Bitcoin address to which to send your payment to. An&nbsp;<em style="box-sizing: border-box;">example</em>&nbsp;of a Bitcoin payment amount and a Bitcoin address is shown in the screen below.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user227218/imageroot/2017/05/29/Bitcoin%20payment.png" style="width: 465px; height: 279px;" /></span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(34, 14, 16); font-size: 12px; font-style: italic;"><span style="box-sizing: border-box; text-decoration-line: underline;">Example</span>&nbsp;of Bitcoin payment information on an order Confirmation</strong></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Your order confirmation is also sent to your email address.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Upon placing an order and hitting &lsquo;Confirm&rsquo;, you have&nbsp;<span style="box-sizing: border-box; text-decoration-line: underline;">20 minutes</span>&nbsp;in which to send your Bitcoin payment to the unique Bitcoin address that specified on your order confirmation.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">7. As soon as BullionStar has received 6 block confirmations of your Bitcoin payment, which can take anywhere from 20 minutes to a few hours, you will automatically receive a payment confirmation update to your email address. BullionStar will thereafter process your order.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">For those unfamiliar with the Bitcoin transfer confirmation process,&nbsp;<a href="https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Confirmation" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;">block confirmation</a>&nbsp;is Bitcoin&rsquo;s way of verifying transactions.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">When a Bitcoin transaction is made, it is then verified by&nbsp;<a href="https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Mining" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;">Bitcoin miners</a>&nbsp;and is grouped with other transactions into a new block on the&nbsp;<a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin#Blockchain" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;">blockchain</a>, upon which it is confirmed. Then when subsequent blocks are added to the block chain, all previous blocks are reconfirmed, a process which generates additional block confirmations.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Generally, merchants and retailers who accept Bitcoin require&nbsp;<span style="box-sizing: border-box; text-decoration-line: underline;">6 confirmations</span>&nbsp;to ensure that a transaction has been fully validated.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Upon receipt for 6 confirmations, BullionStar will proceed to process your order.</span></p> <h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; clear: both; font-family: Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 1.3; font-size: 18px; margin-top: 22px; margin-bottom: 22px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48);"><span style="font-size:18px;">Selling Gold and Silver using Bitcoin</span></h3> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">To sell gold or sell silver on the&nbsp;BullionStar website and receive the proceeds in the form of Bitcoin:</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">1. Select Bitcoin in the currency drop-down menu at the upper right hand side of the BullionStar homepage.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">2. Select the &ldquo;<a href="https://www.bullionstar.com/sell/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;"><em style="box-sizing: border-box;">Sell Gold &amp; Silver to us</em></a>&rdquo; option from the main menu.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Select the product(s) and quantity you wish to sell.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Ensure that the total value of the sell order in BTC is less than or equal to BullionStar&#39;s&nbsp;current online maximum transaction size for a sell order of BTC 30 per transaction.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">(Note: If you would like to place a sell order for an amount larger than BTC 30, please send an e-mail to&nbsp;<a href="mailto:support@bullionstar.com" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;">support@bullionstar.com</a>&nbsp;or call +65 6284 4653&nbsp; to enquire whether we can settle your sell order in Bitcoins.)</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Enter your customer information. The Payment Instructions box will be defaulted to Bitcoin. In the Bitcoin Address box, enter the Bitcoin address where you want to receive your Bitcoin payment to. Then submit your order by clicking &ldquo;Confirm&rdquo;.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user227218/imageroot/2017/05/29/Bitcoin%20sell.png" style="width: 650px; height: 339px;" /></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(34, 14, 16); font-size: 12px; font-style: italic;">Bitcoin Sell screen. Payment Instructions defaults to Bitcoin and&nbsp;Bitcoin Address box</strong></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">For more information, see BullionStar&#39;s help page &quot;<a href="https://www.bullionstar.com/help/bitcoin" style="font-size: 12px; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(170, 99, 39); text-decoration-line: underline;">Bitcoin as Payment Option and Currency</a>&quot;.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">To convert Bitcoins to traditional fiat currency, one straightforward option is to use a Bitcoin exchange such as Bitstamp in the USA or FYB-SG in Singapore. The steps to follow would be to open an account with a Bitcoin exchange, transfer your Bitcoins to your account wallet on the Exchange, sell the Bitcoins on the exchange, and then withdraw the proceeds of the sale in a currency such as US Dollars.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Those who currently do not hold Bitcoin but who might want to can also open and fund a Bitcoin account with one of the Bitcoin Exchanges, and then buy Bitcoin to hold in their Exchange account. This Bitcoin could then be subsequently used in a transaction on the BullionStar website to buy gold or buy silver.</span></p> <h3 style="box-sizing: border-box; clear: both; font-family: Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 1.3; font-size: 18px; margin-top: 22px; margin-bottom: 22px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48);"><span style="font-size:18px;">BullionStar Charts: View and Create Bitcoin Charts</span></h3> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">Note that historic Bitcoin prices are also available on the BullionStar Charts page, where Bitcoin is listed under the Currencies category along with 18 major currencies. The BullionStar charting tool allows you to chart the price of Bitcoin in terms of other currencies and in terms of precious metals, commodities, major stocks, popular stock indices, and in terms of the prices of BullionStar&rsquo;s product range.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size:14px;">With a Bitcoin price history going back to January 2011, you can use BullionStar charting tools to check and view the price action of Bitcoin over the last 6 and a half years.</span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 24px; color: rgb(48, 48, 48); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;"><span style="font-size: 14px;">This article first appeared on the BullionStar website <a href="https://www.bullionstar.com/blogs/bullionstar/buy-sell-gold-silver-bitcoin/">here</a>.</span></p> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/how-buy-and-sell-gold-and-silver-using-bitcoin#comments Alternative currencies Bitcoin Bitcoin Bitcoin ATM BitPay Business Cryptocurrencies Currency default Digital currency exchange Finance Money Precious Metals Price Action Mon, 29 May 2017 14:22:12 +0000 BullionStar 596879 at http://www.zerohedge.com A 'Progressive' Speaks Out: We Demand 3.5 More Years Of Russophobia!! http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/american-progressive-speaks-out-we-demand-35-more-years-russophobia <p><a href="http://thesaker.is/us-progressives-must-demand-3-5-more-years-of-russophobia/">Satirically submitted by Ramin Mazaheri via The Saker,</a></p> <p>There I was again, flying first class on my shareholders&rsquo; dime from New York to San Francisco, when I was deeply saddened to read about the death of Zbigniew Brzezinski, National Security Adviser to Jimmy Carter.</p> <p>For a moment I thought: &ldquo;Surely I can find some anti-Putin articles to read rather than this one?&rdquo; Those always make me so happy!</p> <p>But then I remembered that Zbig was a man after my own heart, because he was <a href="https://theduran.com/zbigniew-brzezinski-death-anti-russian-terrorists/">one of the West&rsquo;s greatest Russophobes</a>. Even the New York Times talked of his &ldquo;<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/26/us/zbigniew-brzezinski-dead-national-security-adviser-to-carter.html?hp&amp;action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;clickSource=story-heading&amp;module=second-column-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news">rigid hatred of the Soviet Union</a>&rdquo;.</p> <p>Zbig ended the détente led by Nixon as Carter, not Reagan, restarted good, old-fashioned, American Russophobia: Selling the Soviets computers with bugs for industrial sabotage, the propaganda effort of the 1980 Olympic Boycott, the US grain embargo to try and starve the Russian people, the arming of the Taliban&rsquo;s forerunners to destabilize a left-wing government in Afghanistan and thus unleashing Islamic terrorism on the world, etc.</p> <p>Just as American Democrats know for an undeniable fact that Jimmy Carter is our nation&rsquo;s greatest living man of peace, I contend that Zbig&rsquo;s anti-Russian stance makes him nearly as great a humanitarian, and certainly a model Democrat in 2017.</p> <p>And Zbig knew, as I and all good Democrats know, that the greatest fight of our generation is the fight against Vladimir Putin.</p> <p>Poverty, starvation, refugees, terrorism, climate change &ndash; everyone in America is realizing that if we can just get rid of Putin, everything else will surely fall into line. Surely!</p> <p>So I was pretty sad to read of Zbig&rsquo;s passing, but that&rsquo;s when it hit me: Just because he&rsquo;s gone, it doesn&rsquo;t mean we have to give up hating Russia!</p> <p>We&rsquo;ve been hating Russia since November &ndash; more than 6 months now &ndash; and, frankly&hellip;it feels awesome!</p> <p>I don&rsquo;t how long it takes to make a habit permanent, so let&rsquo;s all agree to lock this in this Russophobia for at least 3.5 more years, possibly 7.5!</p> <p>It would be a fitting testament to a man whose prophetic Russophobia was misunderstood as &ldquo;anti-communism&rdquo;.</p> <p>Say it loud: It&rsquo;s time for progressive Americans to unite behind hating Russians! Again!</p> <p>Let&rsquo;s party like it&rsquo;s 1979!</p> <h3>Russophobia isn&rsquo;t actually racism &ndash; it proves your patriotism</h3> <p>Now, I&rsquo;m as politically-correct a CEO as was ever made -my allegiance to Hillary proves that &ndash; but I can tell that some people think that I should equivocate by writing &ldquo;hating the Russian government&rdquo; instead of the &ldquo;Russians&rdquo;.</p> <p>Well, it&rsquo;s bold, but being bold is why we CEOs deserve the big bucks and you deserve our crumbs. Not our table crumbs &ndash; those are too good for you &ndash; I mean the crumbs that fall around our fine, Italian shoes.</p> <p>Here&rsquo;s the problem with the Russians: Putin&rsquo;s<a href="https://www.rbth.com/news/2017/03/02/poll-shows-putins-approval-skyrockets-to-record-high-for-2017_711993"> approval rating is over 85%</a>.</p> <p>It is a testament to the master of evil that he has duped nearly all 144 million Russian citizens. They said that <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/50,000,000_Elvis_Fans_Can%27t_Be_Wrong">50 million Elvis fans can&rsquo;t be wrong</a>, but 124 million Putin fans clearly are. I don&rsquo;t know anything about Russian domestic politics, but I don&rsquo;t have to &ndash; that&rsquo;s my right as an American.</p> <p>So I think that if we are going to keep the pressure on Putin we&rsquo;re going to have to widen our net a bit. I&rsquo;m not sure even Rachel Maddow can focus solely on Putin until possibly 2024?</p> <p>Lord knows Saint Rachel has tried! She <a href="http://thehill.com/homenews/media/328771-msnbcs-maddow-covers-russia-than-all-other-news-topics-combined-analysis">devoted 53% of her program to anti-Russian topics</a> over a 6 week period.</p> <p>I would estimate the Facebook pages of those who watch MSNBC are 90% dedicated to sharing her anti-Russian views. I certainly approve of that&hellip;but never during work hours!</p> <p>Here&rsquo;s the thing, and we can take advantage of this: Nobody in the US even knows if it&rsquo;s actually &ldquo;racist&rdquo; to be racist towards Russians.</p> <p>Are the Russians a race? They&rsquo;re pretty numerous, after all. But maybe they&rsquo;re Slavs? Does anyone here know what a Slav is? Aren&rsquo;t they Orthodox Christian? Is that like the Greeks? Is being against Greeks racist? They sure look pretty indistinguishable from Turks, but whoever heard of anti-Greek racism &ndash; they&rsquo;re the fount of Western civilization despite <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Greece">half of ancient Greece being in Turkey</a>?</p> <p>Here&rsquo;s another point in our favor: We have no racial slur against Russians, because it&rsquo;s ok to insult practically anyone from Central or Eastern Europe. We can call Czechs &ldquo;Bohunks&rdquo; and Hungarians &ldquo;Honkys&rdquo; without anyone batting an eye.</p> <p>Are Russians offended at &ldquo;Rooskie&rdquo;? &ldquo;Rooskie&rdquo; just seems to just mean a &ldquo;Russian&rdquo;?</p> <p>We can&rsquo;t call the Japanese &ldquo;Japs&rdquo;, of course, but it&rsquo;s ok to call those from Scotland &ldquo;Scots&rdquo;, which is odd. The British can&rsquo;t call Pakistanis &ldquo;Pakis&rdquo;, even though Pakistan means &ldquo;land of the pure&rdquo;, hardly an insult but certainly factually incorrect. The British call Indians &ldquo;Asians&rdquo;, but in the US &ldquo;Asians&rdquo; are the Chinese and the lesser Chineses.</p> <p>Clearly, we need to devise a better slur immediately to help sustain our Russophobia.</p> <p>But my larger point is: Let&rsquo;s just call Russians &ldquo;White&rdquo; &ndash; this way we can be racist against them with no problem at all!</p> <p>They certainly look Whiter than the Greeks, now that I think about it&hellip;.But this is all distracting us from advancing the Russophobe agenda!</p> <p>I&rsquo;m here to proclaim: Russophobia is not racist! It&rsquo;s like being racist against the French &ndash; it&rsquo;s just good sense!</p> <p>Russophobe progressives of the US unite ! You have nothing to lose but your chains!</p> <p>I spoke to a Russian passenger on the plane about all this.</p> <p>Well, that&rsquo;s not actually true. You see, as an American progressive I&rsquo;d never talk to anybody who could even possibly give me the hint of nearly being able to say something which could remotely be perceived as being maybe not 100% condemnatory of Putin.</p> <p>So not only do I refuse to even have dinner with anyone who I suspect of voting for Trump, but I&rsquo;m certainly not going to come within 3 feet of someone who might explain Putin&rsquo;s popularity.</p> <p>It is better that 124 million Putin-supporters be condemned than to allow one Putin-supporter to go free!</p> <h3>If there&rsquo;s one thing American&rsquo;s don&rsquo;t do, it&rsquo;s play chess</h3> <p>Another thing Americans do: have an exit strategy. And what&rsquo;s the exit strategy towards our 6 month love affair of hating Russians?</p> <p>There is none. So let&rsquo;s just keep going despite all the problems, like Americans do.</p> <p>Please note: I will immediately notify my friends in the Deep State if anyone posts a comment belwo which discusses any possible exit strategy.</p> <p>Because how could we let Putin off the hook for meddling in US democracy? We have no proof after 6 months, despite having the best spy network and computer hackers in the world, but&hellip; all we need is more time! I&rsquo;m sure of it! Rachel Maddow, my darling, I believe you!</p> <p>And Zbig&rsquo;s daughter, poor Mika Brzezinski, I truly am sorry for her loss. There is nothing funny about losing your father.</p> <p>But I&rsquo;m sure Mika <a href="http://legalinsurrection.com/2017/05/mika-we-wont-be-distracted-by-trump-trip-will-focus-on-russia-investigations/">will carry the torch and continue her father&rsquo;s anti-Russian crusade</a>, as she has done at MSNBC, where she is another impeccably credible journalist who got to where she is with no help at all from Daddy, who was a regular analyst on her show.</p> <p>And, like Rachel, Mika should be a role model for not just female journalists but serious thinkers everywhere: just look at this <a href="http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2012/09/12/vanity_fair_profiles_mika_brzezinski_and_joe_scarborough_guess_who_poses_on_top_of_a_table_.html">sexy photo shoot with Vanity Fair</a>. What? I heard Marie Curie made similar photos in her lab involving Erlenmeyer flasks.</p> <p>The whole world knows that America can always rely on our impeccable mainstream media, which is so free from bias.</p> <p>Why, if we had a Russophobia problem The New York Times would have covered it by now, right? <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/14/world/europe/michael-flynn-russia.html">But they have written just 1 article</a> which raised American &ldquo;Russophobia&rdquo; in the last 6 months, so we&rsquo;re clearly fine!</p> <h3>Doesn&rsquo;t hating Russians just &lsquo;feel&rsquo; right?</h3> <p>To be honest, I was worried about my aged father, with whom &ndash; of course &ndash; I have basically no contact. He lives in a nursing home. I can never forgive him for that time as a child when we were in a grocery store and he refused to buy me sugary cereal.</p> <p>He was really anti-Russian &ndash; to honor our forefathers we need his hate to not be in vain!</p> <p>I&rsquo;m also worried about my kids: I grew up being taught to hate Russians &ndash; there&rsquo;s no questioning the values with which I was raised &ndash; but this recent Russophobia is all new to them.</p> <p>Our propaganda efforts are way behind! Remember this <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wc87X9wYe9k">video game from the 80s</a> &ndash; &ldquo;Rush&rsquo;n Attack&rdquo; (say it fast). Knifing guys wearing fur-lined coats amid a snowy backdrop &ndash; but that was totally not Cold War propaganda because Americans don&rsquo;t do propaganda, of course.</p> <p>Part of this is my fault, I&rsquo;ll admit. Among the many boards I sit on is a video game company, and we patriotically tried to do a reboot of this game during Obama&rsquo;s &ldquo;pivot to Asia&rdquo;: We called it &ldquo;Chin Kick&rdquo;. The cover had a boot in someone&rsquo;s face &ndash; all you could see was a bamboo hat and two big front teeth flying off in either direction.</p> <p>But we didn&rsquo;t get it finished before the 2016 election, and here we are pivoting back to Russia (thankfully). By the way, this failure made our stock dip. I fired 700 workers, so problem solved.</p> <h3>I shouldn&rsquo;t have asked him, but&hellip;.</h3> <p>Remember my coworker whom I can&rsquo;t stand, Fazlollah? I should know better than to bring up politics with him, but I had just printed out a new photo of Putin for my dartboard so I had to pass by his cubicle. All Fazlollahs must be familiar with Afghanistan, I figured, so I asked him for a high-five about Brzezinski&rsquo;s successful plan to bankrupt the USSR by supporting the Mujahedeen there. All Americans know that this is how we brought down the Soviets.</p> <p>Fazlollah made a long pause and said, &ldquo;I thought it was applying American economic ideas which bankrupted the Soviets?&rdquo;</p> <p>As usual, I have no idea what planet he&rsquo;s from, so I changed the subject. I tried to talk to him about Putin.</p> <p>Fazlollah said, &ldquo;My friend, have you considered seeing someone about your OCD?&rdquo;</p> <p>He&rsquo;s totally un-American, so he doesn&rsquo;t realize how being obsessed with Russia is the new patriotism.</p> <p>In fact, I&rsquo;m not sure where he&rsquo;s from&hellip;.Human Resources says we&rsquo;re not allowed to ask each other&rsquo;s religion, but he&rsquo;s not Christian because he&rsquo;s doing Ramadan, which apparently just started.</p> <p>Frankly, his increased niceness despite what must be a sub-zero blood sugar level is annoying. I told Fazlollah about how one of my family members does something similar: They gave up putting milk in their coffee for Lent. Think of it &ndash; a whole month with black coffee!</p> <p>Fazlollah perceived that, due to my OCD, I was physically unable to leave his cubicle until we had talked about Putin.</p> <p>He sighed and said in his accented English, &ldquo;The US has interfered in the democratic affairs of dozens of nations just since World War II. So what if Russia exposed corruption in the Democratic Party? What&rsquo;s good for the goose is good for the duck, right?&rdquo;</p> <p>That was hilarious! I made sure everybody heard his mistake!</p> <p>&ldquo;Hey Fazlollah, can you take a gander at some papers,&rdquo; I shouted! Everybody laughed&hellip;another intellectual victory for me!</p> <h3>Russophobia must be the progressive cause of our generation!</h3> <p>We progressive Americans fought against Russian socialism and now we need to fight against Russian non-socialism!</p> <p>Get the flags up! &ldquo;More Prussia, less Russia!&rdquo; &ldquo;Are You Putin Me On, Trump?&rdquo; &ldquo;No dogs or Russians allowed!&rdquo;</p> <p>I can&rsquo;t wait to see the hagiographies of Zbig on MSNBC &ndash; we must keep his progressive legacy alive to fight the not-completely Russophobic Trump administration!</p> <p>The New York Times admiringly wrote about Zbig: &ldquo;But his strict adherence to ideas in which virtually every issue circled back to the threat of Soviet domination was remarkable&hellip;.&rdquo;</p> <p>You see? Russophobia is &ldquo;remarkable&rdquo; and admirable.</p> <p>But&hellip;it made me a bit worried: I just don&rsquo;t see anything similar to that in 2017. America has changed so much&hellip;even the names are all different. I mean, where are we going to find a &ldquo;Zbigniew&rdquo; to cheerlead our Russophobia?</p> <p>And my psychiatrist says I&rsquo;m in a dangerous state &ndash; he says that, after 6 months, any let-up in my Russophobia addiction could be catastrophic.</p> <p>Because&hellip;what else would we talk about? Hillary&rsquo;s failed policies? Obama&rsquo;s failed policies? Fixing those policies?</p> <p>Clearly, that&rsquo;s something only Putin would want!</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="245" height="154" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170529_russ.jpg?1496061989" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/american-progressive-speaks-out-we-demand-35-more-years-russophobia#comments Afghanistan Anti-Russian sentiment Corruption Democratic Party Eastern Europe Eastern Europe ETC Government Greece Let’s party MSNBC national security New York Times None Politics of Russia Russian government Russophobic Trump administration SPY Taliban Turkey Vladimir Putin Vladimir Putin Mon, 29 May 2017 14:20:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 596872 at http://www.zerohedge.com Three Leakers Of Classified White House Information Said To Be Identified, Expected To Be Fired http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/three-leakers-classified-white-house-information-said-be-identified-expected-be-fire <p>As reported <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-26/amid-russia-crisis-trump-prepares-war-room-big-white-house-changes">over the weekend</a>, having returned from his first foreign trip president Trump is preparing a "<em>war room" </em>in response to the barrage of Russian news blanketing the media, and plans to restructure the White House communications strategy and possibly staffing. </p> <p>There have been rumors around Washington that press secretary Sean Spicer's job is in danger (and that <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-28/bannon-back-senior-trump-advisers-push-kushner-take-step-back">Jared Kushner, the focus of much of the latest newsflow, may be forced to take a "step back</a>") but the White House has denied these rumors. In an interview with Fox News' Jeanine Pirro earlier this month, Trump said Spicer has been "doing a good job but he gets beat up."</p> <p>But the biggest issue plaguing the White House at this moment is the seemingly relentless leakage of confidential information surrounding Trump's activities, with Trump administration officials saying last week the recent high-profile leaks of classified information are "coordinated and timed." </p> <p>And in a new development, <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/news/white-house-considers-restructuring-communications-staff/">CBS News </a>has confirmed that <strong>three leakers of classified information at the White House have been identified and are expected to be fired</strong>.&nbsp; </p> <p>According <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/news/white-house-considers-restructuring-communications-staff/">to CBS</a>, "officials within the Trump White House <strong>believe leaks of Mr. Trump's conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov are a "deliberate attempt" by officials who are holdovers from President Obama's administration and are trying to damage the Trump presidency.</strong>"</p> <p>Last week, the Trump campaign released an email to supporters entitled "SABOTAGE," in which the campaign said, "There are people within our own unelected bureaucracy that want to sabotage President Trump and our entire America First movement." </p> <p>The White House has yet to announce any terminations or staff reallignment. Instead, overnight Trump took another swipe at reports that his Twitter privileges may be removed, saying that "the Fake News Media works hard at disparaging &amp; demeaning my use of social media because they don't want America to hear the real story!"</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">The Fake News Media works hard at disparaging &amp; demeaning my use of social media because they don't want America to hear the real story!</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/868985285207629825">May 29, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1600" height="898" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/deep%20throat%20garage.jpg?1496066176" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/three-leakers-classified-white-house-information-said-be-identified-expected-be-fire#comments Alt-right American people of German descent Business Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Donald Trump presidential campaign Fake news Obama's administration Politics Politics of the United States The Apprentice Trump Administration Trump: The Art of the Deal Twitter Twitter United States White House White House WWE Hall of Fame Mon, 29 May 2017 13:57:20 +0000 Tyler Durden 596877 at http://www.zerohedge.com Will The Crazy Global Debt Bubble Ever End? http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/will-crazy-global-debt-bubble-ever-end <p><a href="http://charleshughsmith.blogspot.com/2017/05/will-crazy-global-debt-bubble-ever-end.html"><em>Authored by Charles Hugh Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,</em></a></p> <p><em>There are multiple sources of friction in the Perpetual Motion Money Machine. </em></p> <p><strong>We&#39;ve been playing two games to mask insolvency:</strong> one is to pay the costs of rampant debt today by borrowing even more from future earnings, and the second is to create wealth out of thin air via asset bubbles.</p> <p><strong>The two games are connected:</strong> asset bubbles require leverage and credit. Prices for homes, stocks, bonds, bat guano futures, etc. can only be pushed to the stratosphere if buyers have access to credit and can borrow to buy more of the bubbling assets.</p> <p><strong>If credit dries up, asset bubbles pop:</strong> no expansion of debt, no asset bubble.</p> <p><strong>The problem with these games is the debt-asset bubbles don&#39;t actually expand the collateral (real-world productive value) supporting all the debt.</strong> Collateral can be a physical asset like a house, but it can also be the ability to earn money to service debt.</p> <p>Credit card debt, student loan debt, corporate debt, sovereign debt--all these loans are backed not by physical assets but by the ability to service the debt: earnings or tax revenues.</p> <p>If a company earns $1 million annually, what&#39;s its stock worth? Whether the market values the company at $1 million or $1 billion, the company&#39;s earnings remain the same.</p> <p>If a government collects $1 trillion in tax revenues, whether it borrows $1 trillion or $100 trillion, the tax revenues remain the same.</p> <p><strong>If the collateral supporting the debt doesn&#39;t expand with the debt, the borrower&#39;s ability to service debt becomes increasingly fragile.</strong> Consider a household that earns $100,000 annually. If it has $100,000 in debt to service, that is a 1-to-1 ratio of earnings and debt. What happens to the risk of default if the household borrows $1 million? If earnings remain the same, the risk of default rises, as the household has to devote an enormous percentage of its income to debt service. Any reduction in income will trigger default of the $1 million in debt.</p> <p><strong>If a household earns $100,000 annually, how much can it borrow?</strong> The answer depends on the terms of the debt: the rate of interest and the percentage of principal that must be repaid monthly.</p> <p><strong>If the interest rate is 0% and the monthly payment is fixed at $1, the household can borrow billions of dollars.</strong> This is how the game is played: there is no upper limit on debt if the interest rate is effectively zero, or adjusted for inflation, less than zero.</p> <p><strong>Would you lend the household your savings, knowing you&#39;ll never get any interest and the principal will never be repaid? Of course not.</strong> Nobody in a functioning market for capital would throw their hard-earned savings away on a debtor who can&#39;t pay any interest or principal.</p> <p><strong>The only institutions that can play this game are central banks, which create money out of thin air at zero cost.</strong> As for risk--the way to manage defaults is to <em>print more money.</em></p> <p><strong>But once again--printing money doesn&#39;t create collateral or income needed to service debt.</strong> As I have explained, printing money is akin to adding a zero to currency. Every $1 bill is now a $10 bill. Are you ten times wealthier once the central bank adds a zero to every bill? No, because the $5 loaf of bread is re-set to $50.</p> <p><strong>The other problem with this game is interest keeps ticking higher while earnings remain flat.</strong> Even at very low rates of interest, interest payments keep rising. This is not an issue if income rises along with interest payments, but if income is flat, paying higher interest costs eventually pushes the borrower into default.</p> <p>The household that borrowed $1 billion at 0% paid no interest. But let&#39;s say the lender now demands 1/10th of 1% interest--nearly zero interest. The household now owes $1 million in annual interest. Oops! Even near-zero interest can generate crushing interest payments once the debt reaches the stratosphere.</p> <p><strong>The whole game is a bet that future income will rise faster than debt service.</strong> Unfortunately, we&#39;ve already lost that bet: household income has been stagnant or declining for years (or for the bottom 90%, for decades), and tax revenues have a nasty habit of falling sharply in recessions and stagnating along with private-sector earnings.</p> <p><strong>Which leads to the second game: blowing asset bubbles.</strong> If the household&#39;s earnings are flat or declining, one magical fix is to inflate the household home&#39;s value from $100,000 to $300,000 in a few years.</p> <p><strong>Now the household has $200,000 in new wealth it can tap.</strong> Wow, was that easy or what? That&#39;s the easiest $200,000 we ever made!</p> <p>Of course the house didn&#39;t actually gain any additional functional or utility value; it still has the same number of rooms, etc. It still only provides shelter for the same number of residents. The $200,000 in &quot;wealth&quot; that can now be borrowed or accessed via selling the house does not reflect an increase in the collateral&#39;s utility value--it&#39;s all financial magic leveraged off an unchanging utility value and household income.</p> <p><strong>These games look like a Perpetual Motion Money Machine.</strong> There is no cost, it seems, to expanding debt and assets bubbles; if future income doesn&#39;t rise enough to service the growing mountain of debt, we either print more money, lower the interest rate or create &quot;wealth&quot; with even grander asset bubbles.</p> <p><strong>But there is eventually a problem.</strong> At some point, even 0.1% interest becomes unaffordable, and adding zeroes to the currency devalues the currency faster than incomes rise. Asset bubbles run out of <em>greater fools</em> to buy at elevated prices.</p> <p>Borrowers default, asset prices crash and everyone holding the currency is impoverished.</p> <p><strong>There are multiple sources of friction in the Perpetual Motion Money Machine.</strong> State-cartel inflation eats away at stagnating incomes, rising interest payments eat away at stagnant incomes and tax revenues, and printing money eats away at the purchasing power of the currency. Eventually these sources of friction cause the Perpetual Motion Money Machine to grind to a halt and then shatter.</p> <p><strong>Put another way, the debt-asset bubble supernova consumes all the available fuel and implodes. </strong> I&#39;ve employed the supernova analogy for many years, as it captures the expansion of debt and asset valuations and the resulting collapse once all the fuel in the system (i.e. earnings and real collateral) has been consumed.</p> <p><a href="http://www.oftwominds.com/blognov12/escape-impossible11-12.html" target="resource"> When Escape from a Previously Successful Model Is Impossible</a> (November 29, 2012)</p> <p><strong>State-protected cartels jack up prices with abandon, slashing disposable incomes.</strong> Get rid of competition and enforce a monopoly, and this is what you get:</p> <p><img align="middle" border="0" class="wide" src="http://www.oftwominds.com/photos2017/inflation10-16.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>Real earnings for the bottom 90% have gone nowhere but down for decades:</strong> borrowing from the future doesn&#39;t work if future earnings are lower.</p> <p><img align="middle" border="0" class="wide" src="http://www.oftwominds.com/photos2017/income-disparity8-12.png" /></p> <p><strong>While incomes stagnated, housing has ballooned into Real Estate Bubble #2.</strong></p> <p><img align="middle" border="0" class="wide" src="http://www.oftwominds.com/photos2017/home-prices4-17.png" /></p> <p><strong>Central banks have printed currency with abandon.</strong> Everybody loves free money--especially bankers and financiers.</p> <p><img align="middle" border="0" class="wide" src="http://www.oftwominds.com/photos2017/central-bank-balance-sheet.jpg" /></p> <p><strong>Federal debt has tripled--no problem, let&#39;s triple it again, and then triple that.</strong> There is no upper limit on how much the Empire can borrow, right? &quot;We are the ultimate power in the Universe now,&quot; etc.</p> <p><img align="middle" border="0" class="wide" src="http://www.oftwominds.com/photos2017/US-debt1-17a.png" /></p> <p><strong>All the games end badly.</strong> Tomorrow we&#39;ll examine the paths to impoverishment we can choose from.<br />&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="222" height="131" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170529_chs.jpg?1496061810" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/will-crazy-global-debt-bubble-ever-end#comments Business Central Banks Credit Debt default Economic bubble Economy ETC Finance Financial crises fixed Free Money Government debt Leverage Money National debt of the United States Purchasing Power Real estate Real estate bubble Sovereign Debt Subprime crisis background information Mon, 29 May 2017 13:33:05 +0000 Tyler Durden 596866 at http://www.zerohedge.com Watch Live: Draghi Speaks At Euro Parliament, Makes Case For More Easing http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/watch-live-draghi-speaks-euro-parliament-makes-case-more-easing <p>In today's only major risk event, at 3pm CET (9am ET) Mario Draghi will hold his quarterly hearing before the European Parliament, and his final scheduled appearance before next week’s monetary-policy decision, in which the ECB president will be pressed about his plans for stimulus withdrawal. And, as has been the case in recent months, Draghi will respond that while euro-area data has been improving (this week may show the strongest economic confidence in a decade and the lowest unemployment since 2009) Draghi can still point to consumer prices that are struggling to lift off.<br /><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/europe%20prospects.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/europe%20prospects_0.jpg" width="500" height="281" /></a></p> <p>“Draghi will explain that the improvement in the economy is not sufficient at this point to make sure that the improvement in the inflation outlook is self-sustained,” said Philippe Gudin, chief European economist at Barclays <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-05-28/draghi-s-riddle-of-missing-inflation-makes-case-for-ecb-patience">quoted by Bloomberg</a>. “We are still far from the point at which we could see inflationary pressures materializing.”</p> <p>At the same time, Draghi’s hearing at the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee is another opportunity to tout the euro area’s recovery, and the "favorable impect" of the ECB’s €2.3 trillion bond-buying program, which has ballooned the ECB's balance sheet to the biggest in the world.</p> <p>On the other hand, Draghi’s four-year inflationary campaign has so far failed to put price growth on a self-sustaining path toward the ECB’s goal of just under 2% and if anything, there are hints that the target is receding further into the future. Economists predict that data due Wednesday will show the inflation rate fell to 1.5 percent in May from 1.9 percent. More worryingly for the central bank, core inflation is slated to slow to 1 percent. Additionally, <strong>a key missing element in the ECB’s inflation mix is wages, </strong>which have been rising very slowly despite falling unemployment, even in countries like Germany where joblessness is at a record low.</p> <p>“We have discussed quite extensively why wage increases are relatively subdued, but in my view this is a matter of some time lag,” Governing Council member Ewald Nowotny said on Monday. “If the upswing gets more consolidated, we can expect higher wage dynamics, which means that also core inflation might get stronger.”</p> <p>And just like in the US, as many of the jobs created since the crisis are short-term or part-time, the labor market may have greater spare capacity than official measures suggest, leading workers to opt for more hours before higher salaries. A pick-up in real wages may have to wait until the beginning of next year, when many collective contracts will come up for re-negotiation.</p> <p>According to <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-05-28/draghi-s-riddle-of-missing-inflation-makes-case-for-ecb-patience">Bloomberg</a>, that’s all reason for Draghi to stick to his rhetoric of patience and caution. </p> <p>“He’s not yet sufficiently confident on the durability of the inflation recovery, and there are few signs of an improving core-inflation outlook,” said Anatoli Annenkov, senior economist at Societe Generale in London. “I doubt his message will change much compared to recent appearances.”</p> <p>“I think he has to be quite dovish,” Peter Rosenstreich, head of market strategy at Swissquote, said on Bloomberg Television on Monday. “There’s growing expectation that inflation is building and that the time for unorthodox extreme monetary policy is now coming to an end.”</p> <p>Draghi's prepared remarks can be found <a href="https://www.ecb.europa.eu/press/key/date/2017/html/ecb.sp170529.en.html">at the following link</a>, and the key highlights are below. As expected, despite the so-called recovery, Draghi is convinced that much more easing is necessary:</p> <ul> <li>DRAGHI SAYS AN EXTRAORDINARY AMOUNT OF MONETARY POLICY SUPPORT, INCLUDING THROUGH OUR FORWARD GUIDANCE, IS STILL NECESSARY </li> <li>DRAGHI SAYS EURO-AREA UPSWING IS INCREASINGLY SOLID</li> <li>DRAGHI SAYS DOWNSIDE RISKS TO GROWTH ARE FURTHER DIMINISHING</li> <li>DRAGHI SAYS SOME OF THE TAIL RISKS HAVE RECEDED 'MEASURABLY'</li> <li>DRAGHI SAYS EURO AREA STILL NEEDS VERY ACCOMODATIVE CONDITIONS</li> <li>DRAGHI SAYS ECB FIRMLY CONVINCED<strong> EURO AREA STILL NEEDS SUPPORT</strong></li> </ul> <p>Because recovery?</p> <p><em>Watch Draghi's speech live below</em></p> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://web.ep.streamovations.be/index.php/event/stream/170529-1500-committee-econ/embed" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1280" height="853" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/draghi%20smiling%202_1.jpg?1496062969" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/watch-live-draghi-speaks-euro-parliament-makes-case-more-easing#comments Barclays Business Central bank Consumer Prices Economy Economy of the European Union Euro Eurogroup European Central Bank European Parliament European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee Eurozone Ewald Nowotny Germany Governing Council Group of Thirty Inflation Inflationism Macroeconomic policy Macroeconomics Mario Draghi Monetary Policy Monetary policy Money recovery Unemployment Mon, 29 May 2017 13:04:49 +0000 Tyler Durden 596873 at http://www.zerohedge.com Italian Stocks Tumble, Yields Jump On Sudden Fears Of Early Elections http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/italian-stocks-tumble-yields-jump-sudden-fears-early-elections <p>Despite a promise <a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-politics-idUSKBN18K191">last week </a>by Italian Industry Minister, Carlo Calenda, that Italy would not have early elections this autumn, Italian stocks have tumbled to one month lows and the Italian bank sector is down 3% in Monday trading, its biggest one-day loss in nearly 4 months, with traders citing rising risks that the euro zone's third largest economy could head to early elections in the autumn. </p> <p>The reason for the sudden concern is that in an <a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-election-renzi-idUSKBN18O0G6">interview on Sunday </a>former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi suggested that Italy's next election should be held at the same time as Germany's, adding this made sense "from a European perspective." Germany will vote on Sept. 24, while Italian elections are scheduled for May 2018, but speculation is mounting that Italians could head to the polls in the autumn. Renzi, leader of the ruling center-left Democratic Party, told Italy's newspaper Il Messaggero that his party "would not ask for early elections, but is not afraid of them either".</p> <p><strong>After regaining the leadership of his PD party in late April, Renzi has favored early elections. </strong>He told Il Messaggero that it may be possible to reach an accord on a voting system modeled alongside Germany's proportional model, as suggested by former center-right prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. </p> <p>"In theory yes, but we must be cautious," Renzi said. "The German system would be a step forward in overcoming the current stalemate, but it's not a solution to all problems. Having a coalition in power is very risky."</p> <p>The possibility of a victory for the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, which recent polls put neck and neck with PD at around 30 percent, has made Italy the biggest risk for the euro zone in the eyes of some investors.</p> <p>Commenting on the market's reaction to Renzi's statement, LC Macro Advisers' founder Lorenzo Codogno said that "the latest news out of Italy seems to suggest that a new electoral law is indeed in the making. <strong>The four major parties appear to converge towards the so-called German system, i.e. a purely proportional system with a 5 percent entry threshold</strong>." Quoted by Reuters, Codogno also added that "<strong>the risk of early elections has suddenly increased to 60 percent, in my view. </strong>A hung parliament is thus the most likely outcome (95 percent probability)."</p> <p>Adding to the stakes, Italy's 5-Star Movement voted over the weekend in favour of a proportional electoral system, raising the chances of an unprecedented autumn parliamentary election <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-politics-idUSKBN18P14O">according to Reuters</a>. </p> <p><strong>On Sunday, 5-Star's supporters overwhelmingly backed a proportional law modelled on that of Germany, in which parties must win at least 5 percent of the national vote to get into parliament. </strong>It called for a national election on Sept. 10. That means Italy's four most popular parties, including the ruling Democratic Party (PD), have now signaled a willingness to support a voting law based on proportional representation (PR). </p> <p>Italy must hold an election by May of next year; it has never had a parliamentary election later than the month of June. In addition it must present a budget with an estimated €17 billion in spending cuts or extra revenue in October, and pass it by the end of the year.</p> <p>To be sure, president Sergio Mattarella, the only figure with the power to dissolve parliament, has said elections should only be held after parliament has passed a new electoral law to harmonize voting systems for the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate. For an autumn vote, he may also demand a budget agreement among the main parties, a Reuters source said.&nbsp; However, recent developments may force the president to revise the schedule: "<strong>There's a budget to pass, but if the (electoral law) agreement holds, I believe there will be an election in the autumn," </strong>a source close to the president said on Monday. The willingness of all the major parties to vote on a new electoral law "makes an autumn vote more probable," a government source also told Reuters, "but things will be more clear in 10 days' time".</p> <p>An early vote would allow the ruling Democratic Party (PD) to avoid taking full responsibility for the 2018 budget, and could hand a new government a mandate to tackle the country's chronic growth problems, shore up its struggling banking sector, and push for more help to manage the ongoing migrant crisis. </p> <p>It would, however, also mean a more unstable government, with polls showing a PR system would not produce a clear winner, and post-vote alliances look unwieldy. As a result Italian stocks fell more than those in other European markets on Monday due to worries over an early vote, with the FTSE MIB sliding to nearly&nbsp; one month lows.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/20170529_FTSEMIB.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/20170529_FTSEMIB_0.jpg" width="500" height="263" /></a></p> <p>Spooked by the Renzi comments, Italian bonds were also sold with BTP futures extending their slide in thin liquidity, and the 10y yield now higher by 8bps to 2.18% the biggest spike in 2 months.</p> <p><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/20170529_BTP_0.jpg" width="500" height="262" /></p> <p>The biggest loser, however, was the Italian bank stock sector, which slid by 3%, its biggest drop in 4 months.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/20170529_ITABANKS.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/20170529_ITABANKS_0.jpg" width="500" height="263" /></a></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="963" height="506" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/20170529_FTSEMIB.jpg?1496061321" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/italian-stocks-tumble-yields-jump-sudden-fears-early-elections#comments 5-Star Movement Democratic Party Democratic Party Electoral systems Germany Government Italy Italy Maria Elena Boschi Matteo Renzi Newspaper Next Italian general election PD party Politics Politics of Italy Proportional representation Renzi Cabinet Reuters Senate Silvio Berlusconi Mon, 29 May 2017 12:43:16 +0000 Tyler Durden 596865 at http://www.zerohedge.com MeMoRiaL Day 2017: ORDiNaRY PeoPLe IN EXTRaORDINaRY TiMeS [REPOST} http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/memorial-day-2017-ordinary-people-extraordinary-times-repost <p style="text-align: center;">WB7</p> <p style="text-align: center;"> I originally posted this piece on Memorial Day 2017. Some of you old timers may remember Fringe ZH Lowbrow @aristarchan. Ari as I called him was a good guy. He made inteliigent posts, particularly in the Fukushima related threads. He had a good sense of humor he was always happy to share information. Sadly, the last time I communicated with Ari was about 4 years ago and he was srtruggling with a terminal medical condition, I never heard from him again.</p> <p style="text-align: center;">Since my original post both my parents have been put to final rest in a peaceful US military cemetary. If I were back home I would be sticking flags into the ground this weekend.</p> <p style="text-align: center;">Last night Tyler suggested I report these pictures taken by Ari during his tour of duty in Vietnam.</p> <p style="text-align: center;">To Ari, Mom, Dad and any other final rested brothers and/or sisters of the ZH Community who served their country in good faith with the best of intentions, I take my hat off and give you a Banzai7 salute.&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;">MEMORIAL DAY 2011: ORDINARY PEOPLE IN EXTRAORDINARY TIMES</p> <p style="text-align: center;">"How do you fucking pussies do it?"</p> <p>When I was I kid (and many say I still am), Memorial Day was the day that I put on my Boy Scout uniform, joined the rest of the troop and went to march in the local parade together with all of the veterans wearing their dusty uniforms and medals, local reservists wearing their crispy uniforms, various high school bands and charity organizations. We would all March down our local "Main Street" to an American legion outpost and lay a wreath in honor of all the brave souls lost in foreign wars. </p> <p>Later we would all go home to have our tasty barbecues.</p> <p>I was never enlisted in the military and the sophistication of my views of war has evolved over the years. But one thing remains constant for me. I was one of the many lucky ones who did not have to go to Vietnam.</p> <p>Consequently, my concept of what it was like for those who did have to go consists primarily of Life Magazine and TV images, books and movie scenes. I have also been to Hanoi and looked at what is in the war museums there.</p> <p>I have known many Vietnam vets over the years. Some were clearly scarred and struggling to reacquire "normality." Others you would never guess until they would mention it in passing. </p> <p>In every instance it was impossible to try to grasp what it was like.</p> <p>Now I have no intention of turning out a political statement here and I would appreciate it if everyone reading this would recognize as much.</p> <p> What I am presenting is a very unique opportunity for everyone to literally see what a member of our community saw when he lived through the experience. I am speaking of Aristarchan.</p> <p>I few weeks back Ari tweet/published a batch of scanned photos that he took during his service in the US Army and deployment to Vietnam.</p> <p>As many of you know, street photography is one of my avid pursuits. In street photography, you spend hours hoping you will stumble &nbsp;across what the great photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson called: the "decisive moment."&nbsp;</p> <p>My way of gauging the "decisive" nature of a photograph is the innate ability to put the viewer in a trance. A state of wonderment and captive attention.</p> <p>I looked at Ari's photos and was immediately entranced. These were not just war snap shots. These were a slew of "decisive moments" captured by the eye of an ordinary enlisted man on the streets of war. They were also not taken with any kind of agenda or profit motive.</p> <p>You look at the photos and contemplate, what the experience was like for one of many "average Joes" put in the uncommon situation that is war.</p> <p>Enough said by me.</p> <p> I asked Ari to pick a few images I could post on Memorial Day and scribble a few words to go with them. I told him that I did not want to publish a political statement on Memorial Day and preferred to avoid any graphic content. With regard to the latter, I just feel there is plenty already out there and it has a voyeuristic tendency to visually hijack the viewers attention from the subtler human dimension I am referring to. &nbsp;</p> <p>Here they are...</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2097/5773951601_244416c241_o.jpg" alt="Bassack" title="Bassack" width="425" height="412" /></p> <p>BASSACK: </p> <p>The one true line I remember from Apocalypse Now was: never get off the Goddamn boat. But, it was our job. At first, one took things in graded degrees of exposure. One, leaving base....that is a little risky, since you are going into Indian country. Two, heading down a river...very risky, since you are essentially a sitting duck. Three, getting off the Goddamn boat. There, you are on your own. Calling in an air strike on a position in heavy jungle was almost as risky as engaging the enemy, since accuracy was not something you could count on. A lot of guys (me included), leaving that little slice of home - the ramp, would sit down in the water and relieve their boiling bowels. In that position, war is not heroic. This is 1968, in a Bassack River tributary. [@Aristarchan]</p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3196/5774489744_1055203f58_o.jpg" alt="Two Tour" title="Two Tour" width="608" height="640" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">TWO TOUR: </p> <p style="text-align: left;">Willie, you have seen this pic before. This is the eyes of a man who has learned to enjoy killing. He was an ear taker. This pic was taken in the U-Minh Forest. I guess some people can get so into what they are doing, they lose control of what makes them human. The eyes never lie. I avoided people like this like the plague unless in a firefight. In base, they were crazy, looking for fights and abusive and violent. In the field - in a firefight - they were good. Even insanity has it's uses.</p> <p style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2473/5773950935_c8e4126027_b.jpg" alt="VN" title="VN" width="950" height="629" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">HIDE SKINNER: </p> <p style="text-align: left;">Ok Bill, here is the first ( the messed up one). It was taken on December 4th, 1969 in Dinh Tuong Province. We were on S&amp;D, and came up against the 502 battalion of the NVA. This pic was taken as we assaulted a bunker complex at the apex of a series of canals making up the Rach Ruong. This guy we called "hide skinner." He was under heavy machine gun fire from a bunker. I had just rolled off the boat and crawled through the mud toward the main canal, and I was lying in an intersecting canal with my head just above water trying to avoid the snap and whine of bullets overhead, and snapped this pic as he looked at me. Later, another battalion of Army, and one from the Marines joined us, along with helicopter gunships. It was one hell of a fray. I have never been so fucking scared in my life.</p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5143/5774490316_b5d3fb8655_b.jpg" alt="Snakes" title="Snakes" width="662" height="665" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">SNAKES:</p> <p style="text-align: left;">Yeah, snakes were a part of things, but not that much. Some guys were scared to death of them - feared them more that the VC. And, a lot of guys got bit. Most snakes would move on if you let them, but crawling under a low canopy in a muddy canal at night...it did cross your mind. I hated the tree vipers that would hang down from the limbs at night. This is Roy McDow, who found this Python curled up in his bunk. It is still alive.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3584/5773951831_53170b4229_o.jpg" alt="Chris" title="Chris" width="434" height="640" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">CHRIS NOEL:&nbsp;</p> <p>Chris Noel entertaining the troops. This was in Dong Tam in 1969. She was one of the most prevalent entertainers of the era, spending a lot - too much - time in Vietnam. Later, she was hospitalized for what is now called, PTSD. She was one brave lady, and I always admired her for going to places a lot of other folks would not. And, she stuck with us when it seemed everyone else had abandoned us as baby-killing monsters.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5101/5773951245_5ebaf79315_o.jpg" alt="TT" title="TT" width="600" height="480" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">TIGER TRAP:</p> <p style="text-align: left;">Thanks, Bill. An FYI, "Hide Skinner" got killed two months later in the U-Minh Forest. He walked through a gate with a wired grenade on it ( he fucking should have known better), and it blew his mid-section out. He bled to death while medics tried to grab hold of the artery in his abdomen and shut off the blood flow. The whole time he screamed for his mother. A tough killer reduced to a dying child. I was reduced to lying down inside the treeline crying. </p> <p style="text-align: left;"> This pic was taken - I think, in late 1968 in the Delta. The point man, Waverly Grearson, had fallen into a Tiger Trap - a boobytrap. In the bottom of it was bamboo sticks sharpened to points. When we pulled him out, he had one ft. stakes driven through his boots and into his feet and legs. He died three weeks later from tetanus. The VC would dip these things in cow piss and dung. I snapped this pic running back to where it happened. I was on trail, so missed what happened.</p> <p style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://mail.google.com/mail/?ui=2&amp;ik=64adbddc55&amp;view=att&amp;th=13034c6f839b0ac0&amp;attid=0.1&amp;disp=inline&amp;zw" alt="GH" title="GH" width="1024" height="768" /></p> <p style="text-align: left;">GOING HOME:</p> <p style="text-align: left;">This pic tells a lot about the war in Vietnam. Helicopters, red clay, dust, bush, scared men, weapons and constant movement. The sound of a helicopter today - in a movie or in reality, puts my head on a swivel. What a lot of war movies miss, even the ones who try to portray war in a frail-human light, is the constant, low-level, subconscious terror when one one is not in battle....but sitting back at camp, or on leave, knowing you have to go back. It gnaws on you like going back to the dentist every day and having the same tooth drilled on...day after day. A Navy SEAL once told me, on a boat in the Bassack: "I have a lot of respect for you Army guys, you have no training or inclination for this war, you walk through the bush talking, smoking, farting, coughing and thinking about home. You are constantly terrified. We, on the other hand, consider this our life. It is normal. How do you fucking pussies do it?"</p> <p style="text-align: left;">[WB7: I want to mention that Ari sent me two other photos that I decided not to post for the reasons I state above. One is a picture of a Vietnamese soldier with his head blown off and the other is a "body count" score board with Ari's reflections on the official rules of engagement.</p> <p style="text-align: left;">With regard to the "pussy" observation, I have one minor anecdote to add. When I was at the National War Museum in Hanoi, which is really a celebration of Vietnamese victory over the American imperialists, I was struck by two things. First, how much the Vietnamese like Americans. Second, I had a brief conversation with one of the curators who was also a war veteran. One of the things he said was he bears no grudge against the enlisted men he fought. It was their country and so they knew very well what kind of hell it is to live and fight in their jungles and swamps. He said they were ceaselessly amazed at how much of that shit the "pampered" Americans could handle. &nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: left;">Thank you Ari for sharing these images and thoughts.</p> <p style="text-align: left;">Let us all remember the personal sacrifices and struggles made by all ordinary men and women in the extraordinary experience that is war.</p> <p style="text-align: left;">Happy Memorial Day 2011</p> <p style="text-align: left;">WB7]</p> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/memorial-day-2017-ordinary-people-extraordinary-times-repost#comments Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe Awake Main Street Music industry Reality United States Army US Army Mon, 29 May 2017 12:14:04 +0000 williambanzai7 596864 at http://www.zerohedge.com Key Events In The Coming Busy Week: US Payrolls; Eurozone Inflation And Fed Speakers http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/key-events-coming-busy-week-us-payrolls-eurozone-inflation-and-fed-speakers <p>Focus in this holiday-shortened week will turn to US data, especially NFP, Fed speakers and Eurozone inflation. UK PMIs will also draw attention as elections approach. We also get GDP data from Canada, Sweden and Switzerland. In EM, there are MP meetings in Brazil &amp; Israel. On Monday, with US, UK and Chinese markets closed, Euro FX and bond markets will be on Mario Draghi alert on Monday as the ECB president speaks to the European parliament.</p> <p><strong>NFP, Fedspeak, Eurozone inflation</strong></p> <p>After the FOMC Minutes and a mixed finish to US data last week (Q1 GDP revised higher though durables weighed on 2Q GDP), attention turns squarely to upcoming US data this week, particularly Friday's payrolls report. The U.S. jobs report Friday should bolster the case for a rate hike, with a gain of 180,000 jobs expected.</p> <p>With a June hike 80% priced, any Fed commentary will also be carefully parsed for clues that the Fed is comfortable with this pricing. With the blackout period looming, the Fed only has next week to push back against - or indeed affirm - market expectations if they so choose. After the FOMC minutes, most banks have brought forward their base case for June &amp; September Fed hikes this year.</p> <p>The June ECB meeting is also fast approaching, and expectations are that we will see a change in language, signaling a hawkish shift. This week's Eurozone inflation data will therefore draw increased attention. BofA economists expect inflation to drop to 1.4% in May, from 1.9% in April, with core also expected to move 20bp lower, to 1.0% in May. Also in Europe, Euro-area data this week may show the strongest economic confidence in a decade on Tuesday. The preliminary headline inflation rate for the region will come on Wednesday.</p> <p>The EIA is due to release its monthly supply reports Wednesday.</p> <p><strong>The week ahead in Emerging Markets</strong></p> <p>There are monetary policy meetings in Brazil and Israel. Brazil’s central-bank decision on Wednesday will probably see a cut of 75 to 100 basis points from the current 11.25 percent, according to economists. China’s May manufacturing PMIs on Wednesday could indicate that the nation’s 2017 growth has already peaked. </p> <p><strong>Daily calendar, via DB<br /></strong></p> <p>As noted before, with markets closed in both the UK (Bank Holiday) and US (Memorial Day) today it’s an unsurprisingly quiet start to the week with M3 money supply growth for the Euro area in April the only data due. </p> <p>We kick off Tuesday in Japan where the April retail sales and employment data is due. In Europe tomorrow we get Q1 GDP in France, CPI in Germany in May and confidence indicators for the Euro area in May. Over in the US tomorrow we’ll get personal income and spending for April along with the PCE core and deflator readings, followed by the March S&amp;P/Case-Shiller house price index reading, May consumer confidence reading and May Dallas Fed manufacturing activity index print. </p> <p>Turning to Wednesday, the overnight data in Asia comes from China where the official May PMIs are due. In Japan we’ll get industrial production and housing starts. In Europe on Wednesday we get May CPI in France, Germany unemployment in May, April money and credit aggregates in the UK and the May CPI report for the Euro area. In the US on Wednesday we’ll get the Chicago PMI for May and April pending home sales print. </p> <p>Thursday kicks off in Japan again where Q1 capex data will be released along with the final manufacturing PMI revision. Manufacturing PMIs dominate the European session on Thursday with final readings due in the Euro area, Germany and France along with a first look at the periphery and UK. In the US we’ll also get the manufacturing PMI along with Q1 unit labour costs and nonfarm productivity, May ADP report, initial jobless claims, May ISM manufacturing and April construction spending. </p> <p>It’s a quiet end to the week in Europe on Friday with PPI for the Euro area in April the only data due. In the US it’s all eyes on the May employment report, while we’ll also get the April trade balance print.</p> <p>Away from the data we’re light on Fedspeak this week with Williams (today), Brainard (Tuesday), Kaplan (Wednesday) and Williams and Powell (Thursday) the only scheduled speakers. Over at the ECB we’ll hear from Nowotny and Draghi (today), Liikanen (Tuesday) and Villeroy (Thursday). The BoJ’s Harada also speaks on Thursday. Other things to note this week are UK PM May’s televised Q&amp;A tonight with opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn and the China-EU summit beginning on Tuesday in Brussels.</p> <p><em>Below is a visual summary of the week's key events:</em></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/known%20unkonwns%205.29.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/known%20unkonwns%205.29_0.jpg" width="500" height="961" /></a></p> <p>* * * </p> <p><strong>Finally, looking only as the US, </strong>the key economic releases this week are the ISM manufacturing report on Thursday, the employment report on Friday and PCE inflation and consumer confidence on Tuesday and trade on Friday. In addition, there are several scheduled speaking engagements by Fed officials this week. The Beige Book for the June FOMC period will be released on Wednesday.&nbsp; </p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/US%20eventa%20chart.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/US%20eventa%20chart_0.jpg" width="500" height="542" /></a></p> <p><em>More from Goldman </em></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Monday, May 29 </strong></span></p> <ul> <li>Memorial Day. There are no data releases and equity and bond markets are closed. </li> </ul> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Tuesday, May 30 </strong></span></p> <ul> <li><strong>8:30 AM Personal income, April (GS +0.5%, consensus +0.4%, last +0.2%): Personal spending, April (GS +0.6%, consensus +0.2%, last flat); PCE price index, April (GS +0.16%, consensus +0.2%, last -0.2%); Core PCE price index, April (GS +0.12%, consensus +0.1%, last -0.1%); PCE price index (yoy), April (GS +1.65%, consensus +1.7%, last +1.8%); Core PCE price index (yoy), April (GS +1.49%, consensus +1.5%, last +1.6%):</strong> Based on the Q1 GDP revision and inputs from various price indices, we estimate that the core PCE price index rose 0.12% month-over-month in April and rose 1.65% from a year ago. Additionally, we expect that the headline PCE price index rose 0.16% and rose 1.65% from a year earlier, and we note the possibility that the headline measure rounds down to 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. We estimate a 0.5% increase in April personal income and a 0.6% drop in April personal spending (nominal, mom sa), and we note scope for upward revisions to March personal spending growth.</li> <li><strong>09:00 AM S&amp;P/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index, March (GS +1.3%, consensus +0.9%, last +0.7%):</strong> We expect the S&amp;P/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index to rise 1.3% in the March report following a 0.7% increase in the prior month. The measure still appears to be influenced by seasonal adjustment challenges, and we place more weight on the year-over-year increase, which rose to 5.8% from 5.6% in February.</li> <li><strong>10:00 AM Conference Board consumer confidence, May (GS 119.8, consensus 119.8, last 120.3):</strong> We forecast that the Conference Board consumer confidence index declined 0.5pt to 119.8 in May after retrenching in April from the cycle high in March. Our forecast reflects mixed consumer surveys in the month, as well as a sharp drop in the stock market that has now more than reversed.</li> <li><strong>10:30 AM Dallas Fed manufacturing index, May (consensus +15.0, last +16.8)</strong></li> <li><strong>01:00 PM Fed Governor Brainard (FOMC voter) speaks:</strong> Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard will give a speech on the economy and monetary policy at a New York Association for Business Economics luncheon at the Cornell Club in New York. Audience Q&amp;A is expected.</li> </ul> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Wednesday, May 31 </strong></span></p> <ul> <li><strong>08:00 AM Dallas Fed President Kaplan (FOMC voter) speaks:</strong> Dallas Federal Reserve President Robert Kaplan will participate in a moderated Q&amp;A as a part of the C. Peter McColough Program on International Economics at the Council of Foreign Relations in New York City. Both audience and media Q&amp;A is expected.</li> <li><strong>09:45 AM Chicago PMI, May (GS 58.0, consensus 57.0, last 58.3):</strong> We expect the Chicago PMI to edge down to 58.0 in May, following a 0.6pt increase to 58.3 in the month prior. However, the index is likely to remain at a level consistent with growth in the manufacturing sector.</li> <li><strong>10:00 AM Pending home sales, April (GS +1.2%, consensus +0.4%, last -0.8%):</strong> We expect pending home sales to rebound 1.2% in April. Regional housing data released so far suggest a bit of slowing year-to-date, but this is likely to be offset by calendar effects due to the timing of the Easter holiday. In the March report, pending home sales pulled back 0.8%, partially due to unseasonably cold weather in March. We have found pending home sales to be a useful leading indicator of existing home sales with a one- to two-month lag.</li> <li><strong>02:00 PM Beige Book, June FOMC meeting period:</strong> The Fed’s Beige book is a summary of regional economic anecdotes from the 12 Federal Reserve districts. The last Beige Book reported that activity continued to expand across more districts. Labor markets continued to tighten, and wage pressures broadened; while consumer spending was more mixed, manufacturing activity expanded and the energy sector improved further. In the June Beige Book, we look for additional anecdotes related to the state of consumption, price inflation, and wage growth.</li> <li><strong>08:10 PM San Francisco Fed President Williams (FOMC non-voter) speaks:</strong> San Francisco Fed President John Williams will give a speech at the Bank of Korea Conference on Global Economic and Financial Challenges. Audience and media Q&amp;A is expected.</li> </ul> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Thursday, June 1 </strong></span></p> <ul> <li><strong>08:00 AM Fed Governor Powell (FOMC voter) speaks:</strong> Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell will give a speech titled “Thoughts on the Normalization of Monetary Policy” at the Economic Club of New York’s breakfast meeting. Audience Q&amp;A is expected.</li> <li><strong>08:15 AM ADP employment report, April (GS +185k, consensus +180k, last +177k)</strong>: We expect a 185k increase in ADP payroll employment in May, reflecting a boost from the stronger headline payrolls growth in April utilized in the ADP model. We expect an additional modest boost from net strength in the financial and economic indicators also used in the model. The ADP report introduced methodological changes last fall and now offers more details by sector. While we believe the ADP employment report holds limited value for forecasting the BLS’s nonfarm payrolls report, we find that large ADP surprises vs. consensus forecasts are directionally correlated with nonfarm payroll surprises.</li> <li><strong>08:30 AM Nonfarm productivity (qoq saar), Q1 final (GS -0.4%, consensus -0.5%, last -0.6%); Unit labor costs, Q1 final (GS +2.8%, consensus +2.9%, last +3.0%):</strong> We estimate Q1 non-farm productivity will be revised up 0.2pp to -0.4% in the second vintage, well below the 0.75% trend achieved on average during this expansion. We expect unit labor costs – compensation per hour divided by output per hour – for Q1 to be revised down by 0.2pp to 2.8% (qoq saar).</li> <li><strong>08:30 AM Initial jobless claims, week ended May 27 (GS 240k, consensus 238k, last 234k): Continuing jobless claims, week ended May 20 (consensus 1,920k, last 1,923k):</strong> We estimate initial jobless claims rose 6k to 240k in the week ended May 27. We see few notable outliers in the state-level data from last week. Continuing claims – the number of persons receiving benefits through standard programs – have trended down further in recent weeks, suggestive of additional labor market improvement that we expect to continue.</li> <li><strong>09:45 AM Markit flash US manufacturing PMI, May final (consensus 52.5, last 52.5)</strong></li> <li><strong>10:00 AM ISM manufacturing, May (GS 55.2, consensus 54.6, last 54.8)</strong>: Regional manufacturing surveys were mixed in May, and we expect ISM manufacturing to rebound 0.4pt to 55.2 following a sizeable 2.4pt decline in the prior month. The Philly Fed (+16.8pt to +38.8) and Kansas City Fed (+1pt to +8) manufacturing sector surveys both strengthened, while the Richmond Fed (-19pt to +1) and Empire State (-6.2pt to -1.0) surveys both declined notably. Our manufacturing survey tracker—which is scaled to the ISM index—stands at 55.2 in May, down from 56.3 in April.</li> <li><strong>10:00 AM Construction spending, April (GS +0.6%, consensus +0.5%, last -0.2%):</strong> We expect construction spending to bounce back 0.6% in April, following a 0.2% decline in March that was driven primarily by weaker nonresidential building. We expect the fading effects of unfavorable weather earlier this year to boost construction spending in April.</li> <li><strong>05:00 PM Total vehicle sales, May (GS 16.8mn, consensus 17.0mn, last 16.8mn):</strong> Domestic vehicle sales, May (GS 13.3mn, consensus 13.2mn, last 13.1mn)</li> </ul> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Friday, June 2 </strong></span></p> <ul> <li><strong>8:30 AM Nonfarm payroll employment, May (GS +160k, consensus +180k, last +211k); Private payroll employment, May (GS +150k, consensus +180k, last +194k); Average hourly earnings (mom), May (GS +0.2%, consensus +0.2%, last +0.3%); Average hourly earnings (yoy), May (GS +2.5%, consensus +2.6%, last +2.5%); Unemployment rate, May (GS 4.4%, consensus 4.4%, last 4.4%):</strong> We estimate nonfarm payrolls increased 160k in May, a moderate slowdown from April’s +211k pace and somewhat below the three-month moving average of +175k. Our forecast reflects some softening in service sector employment surveys, a return to normal weather, and potential labor market constraints.</li> <li>While labor market fundamentals remained broadly stable – featuring a further decline in continuing jobless claims – recent weakness in the ISM- and regional service sector employment components suggest hiring demand may be slowing at the margin. Additionally, May is also an important hiring month, and labor supply constraints in some geographies and industries may pose additional downside risk. Offsetting these concerns, the end of the federal hiring freeze in Mid-April suggests a possible above-trend reading in federal government employment.</li> <li>We estimate the unemployment rate remained stable at 4.4%, based on our expectation that household employment will hold on to its sharp year-to-date gains. Finally, we expect average hourly earnings to increase 0.2% month over month and 2.5% year-over-year, reflecting the interaction of firming wage growth with unfavorable calendar effects.</li> <li><strong>08:30 AM Trade balance, April (GS -$46.2bn, consensus -$45.5bn, last -$43.7bn): </strong>We estimate the trade deficit widened by $2.5bn in April. The Advance Economic Indicators report last week showed a sharp widening in the goods trade deficit, and we forecast a similar widening in the broader trade balance in this week’s report.</li> <li><strong>12: 45 PM Philadelphia Fed President Harker (FOMC voter) speaks:</strong> Philadelphia Federal Reserve President Patrick Harker will give a speech on the economic outlook and the Philly Fed’s Economic Growth and Mobility Project at the Pennsylvania Economic Association’s 2017 conference. Audience Q&amp;A is expected.</li> </ul> <p><em>Source: Goldman, BofA, DB</em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="722" height="339" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/key%20events%205.29.jpg?1496059324" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/key-events-coming-busy-week-us-payrolls-eurozone-inflation-and-fed-speakers#comments Bank of Japan Bank of Korea Beige Book Bond Brazil Business Case-Shiller Chicago PMI China Conference Board Conference Board Consumer Confidence Consumer confidence Consumer confidence index Continuing Claims Cornell Club in New York Council of Foreign Relations CPI Dallas Fed Dallas Fed Dallas Federal Reserve Economic Club of New York Economic indicator Economy European Central Bank European Parliament European Union Eurozone Federal Open Market Committee Federal Reserve Federal Reserve System flash France Germany Headline inflation Housing Starts Inflation Initial Jobless Claims ISM Israel Japan John Williams Kansas City Fed M3 Macroeconomics Markit Monetary Policy Money Supply New York Association New York City Nonfarm payrolls Pennsylvania Economic Association Personal consumption expenditures price index Personal Income Philadelphia Fed Philadelphia Federal Reserve Philly Fed Richmond Fed S&P/Case San Francisco Fed San Francisco Fed Structure Switzerland Trade Balance Trade Deficit Unemployment US Federal Reserve Mon, 29 May 2017 12:02:13 +0000 Tyler Durden 596863 at http://www.zerohedge.com What's going on with bitcoin? http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/whats-going-bitcoin <p><strong><span style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/bitcoin-volatility-good-gold/">What's going on with bitcoin?</a></span></strong></p> <p><span style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif;"><span style="font-size: 16px;"><br /></span></span></p> <ul style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"> <li>Bitcoin hits $2,700, a 500 fold increase in five years and doubling in price since May 1st.</li> <li>Previous surges - in 2011 and 2013 - have been followed by dramatic crashes</li> <li>Significant premiums seen in Asia, over USD price</li> <li>Total cryptocurrency market cap reached over $90bn, last week</li> <li>Market remains small and volatile</li> <li>Comparisons between bitcoin and gold are old, invalid and misleading</li> <li>Both bitcoin and gold offer opportunities to diversify away from corrupt financial system</li> </ul> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><img src="http://www.goldcore.com/ie/wp-content/uploads/sites/19/2017/05/header-image.jpg" width="1280" height="720" style="height: auto; max-width: 100%; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-10194" /></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">What’s going on with bitcoin?</span></strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>Introduction</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">Last week the bitcoin price hit $2,700. A 500-fold increase in five years and a doubling in price since the start of the month.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">Most people are aware of bitcoin tangentially, few are really conscious of it day-to-day and even fewer people are actually&nbsp;<em>in&nbsp;</em>bitcoin. Other significant cryptocurrencies, such as Ether and Ripple have also been going great guns and these are even less prominent in the public domain.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">If something such as bitcoin with such a small market cap and very little public awareness is doubling in price in less than a month, what does it mean? Why is it behaving like this? Is it in a bubble? Is it a scam? Does it means that you should be getting in on the act? And what does it mean for its contemporaries, such as gold?</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">We take a brief look at why the price has been climbing, what this means for the future of cryptocurrencies and, most importantly, what this says about gold.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><img src="http://www.goldcore.com/ie/wp-content/uploads/sites/19/2017/05/Bitcoin-price-graph.png" width="1738" height="728" style="height: auto; max-width: 100%; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-10192" /></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>Why the spike in the bitcoin price?</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">I was asked this question recently on question-and-answer site&nbsp;<a href="https://www.quora.com/Why-is-the-price-of-bitcoin-increasing-rapidly/answer/Jan-Skoyles">Quora</a>. I include the answer below, with some edits and further information. It does not focus on specific events but instead on both the short and long-term drivers of the bitcoin price. It should be noted that whilst the price of bitcoin has fallen back from it’s highs of last week, it has not taken the same tumble it has done previously following price-spikes.</p> <ol style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"> <li><strong>FOMO</strong>&nbsp;(aka Fear of Missing Out) and&nbsp;<strong>hype</strong>&nbsp;- there are some who are worried that they missed getting in on bitcoin every time it has climbed like this and they want in, in order to profit from what could be a bubble or to profit from further climbs. Like most investment opportunities or just trends elsewhere, people are always searching for the next big thing. Inevitably this leads to speculation and a feedback loop…</li> <li>This leads to the increased&nbsp;<strong>number of trades</strong>, which economics tells us will drive up the price. In early 2013 the number of bitcoin trades was around 40k, today it is closer to 330k. According to the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance, speculation is the biggest driver for the recent price climb.</li> <li><strong>Acceptance&nbsp;</strong>- as the currency is accepted in more places, this is further sign of validation. This is not good for the price just because there will be more transactions, but it is good for the price as it means more key stakeholders in the financial, banking, legal and regulatory industries will be paying attention.</li> <li>Policy changes - with each policy change that is in favour of bitcoin this brings&nbsp;<strong>validation</strong>&nbsp;to the currency and the overall blockchain network. One of the biggest examples of policy change recently has been in Japan, where the government formally recognised the currency.</li> <li>Following on from above,&nbsp;<strong>future expectations:&nbsp;</strong>The more the currency is accepted, the harder it is to control and for governments to ignore. This gives more faith in the future of the currency, which drives demand based on future expectations not just the current environment.</li> <li><strong>Economies of scale&nbsp;</strong>- as we see more policy changes, more payment processors accepting bitcoin, more news stories etc covering the rising price then the overall market for bitcoin becomes more stable. Each time we have a price climb like this (I can think of two earlier ones) the marketplace is increasingly stable (n.b. I say marketplace and not price) this gives consumers more confidence that bitcoin isn’t going to just disappear</li> <li><strong>First mover advantage -&nbsp;</strong>this isn’t news, in the same way 21 million bitcoins isn’t news, but the fact that bitcoin was the first currency does give it an increasing advantage as early adopters have sought to ensure and protect the strong community, ecosystem and industry that supports bitcoin activity. Again, this is gives new adopters confidence.</li> <li><strong>Hackers -&nbsp;</strong>We’re all aware now of the horrendous attacks that have happened around the world. The most recent of which demanded payment in bitcoins. Many may see this as bad press for the cryptocurrency but in response to this (there are rumours that) large organisations are buying up bitcoin in preparation for future attacks.</li> <li><strong>Obstacles for arbitrage&nbsp;</strong>- usually when there is a big spread between currency markets traders capitalise on the arbitrage opportunity. In bitcoin where there are major premiums on the bitcoin price in both Japan and South Korea, over the US Dollar price, regulatory and legal barriers are preventing traders who buy USD priced bitcoins from selling them in Asian markets, quickly enough to meet surging demand. This drives the price further.</li> </ol> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">Before I go on to the other reasons why the bitcoin price is rising, gold investors should note that the following reasons for bitcoin’s price climb are exactly the same reasons why gold has value and climbs in price.</p> <ol style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"> <li><strong>It’s being treated like an actual currency -&nbsp;</strong>this where all the usual stuff applies that we normally refer to when we talk about fiat currencies, gold and silver. Bitcoin is another currency that gets traded according to demand for other currencies and perceptions surrounding them, this is affected by:</li> </ol> <ul style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"> <li>Geopolitical risks - in the UK alone consider terrorist attacks, Brexit uncertainty, UK elections. Then consider North Korea etc</li> <li>Demand for the dollar - investigations and rumours surrounding Trump are not helping.</li> <li>Global debt concerns - Greek debt concern is now a thing again (it has always been a thing but it gets pushed to the sidelines occasionally).</li> <li>China - for many people this is the big reason why the price is climbing. China has been struggling for a while now, with the Shanghai Composite down by 10% and bitcoin demand climbing as a flight of safety away from the yuan. However, Chinese bitcoin trade volume is only 10%, compared to around 90% back in January.</li> </ul> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>But what about gold?</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">I have written and tweeted extensively about the gold versus bitcoin issue. In short, I believe that it is a non issue in terms of the fact that I do not believe they are competing assets. I’m in the minority, as the mainstream continue to compare the two assets. This is inevitable given the reasons for both bitcoin’s creation and for some investors are to mimic gold’s unique combination of characteristics.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><img src="http://www.goldcore.com/ie/wp-content/uploads/sites/19/2017/05/Beating-gold.png" width="1400" height="787" style="height: auto; max-width: 100%; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-10193" /></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">Many on Twitter have accused those of us who believe that they are not competing assets, as trying to prop up gold and that we’re in denial about bitcoin usurping gold as the ultimate reserve currency. This isn’t the case at all, both gold and bitcoin are alternative assets. Despite this, physical gold is the clear safe haven on account of it’s history, physicality, proven value and reduced-exposure to modern technologies.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">As explained above, some of bitcoin’s price performance can be attributed to geopolitical events, however a CoinDesk survey at the beginning of the year shows that only a small percentage of those surveyed pointed to macroeconomic factors as the reason for the price climb, many in the crypto world still consider technological improvements within the ecosystem to be the greater support for higher prices.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">This suggests that for now, gold remains the ultimate safe haven when it comes to great geopolitical and financial issues. Bitcoin’s volatility makes it difficult to for investors to place their faith in the currency due to the uncertainty of whether or not it will still ave value (let alone where it’s price will be) in a year from now. With physical gold there is far more certainty both in terms of its value and its security, when stored in a segregated, allocated manner.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">As we wrote back in&nbsp;<a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/bitcoin-gold-outlook-safe-haven/">January</a>:</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><em>Currently bitcoin plays a different role to gold. For want of an analogy, bitcoin is more the cash, whilst gold is more the savings. It is likely that we will see those looking at securing their wealth across both assets. This is likely to be done in a similar way that we see gold investors also buy silver, and divide holdings between stored bars and coins kept at home.</em></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><em>It is possible for us to take any asset and demonstrate staggering returns over a perfectly chosen period. The fact is that for now, the bitcoin investment market is too new and under reported to know what role the currency may play.</em></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><em>…owning bitcoin directly can bring its own security risks and this is something there is little education and understanding about.</em></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><em>In contrast, holding gold as part of a balanced portfolio and as a safe haven asset has been part of the public consciousness for centuries and remains understood by many today – especially in Asia.</em></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>Conclusion - Nothing to see here</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">Speculation and volatility is bitcoin’s weakness at present, or so believe the mainstream. It is worth remembering that speculation in and of itself is not a bad thing. Cryptocurrency markets should not be criticised for the fact that this is going on. Speculation is the product of a free market, it is also evidence of organic growth and a growing user base. Spikes such as these do a great job of drawing in awareness of the space in the early years.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">Unsurprisingly supporters of cryptocurrencies remain un-phased by this latest fall in price. As with those who invest in gold, it is the wider outlook, the ecosystem and the real value which gives supporters confidence that there is little to worry about here.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">All markets have a dynamic where by seasoned traders and speculators use price spurts to lock in profits, as new demand enters the market (generally thanks to a small price increase, announcement or geopolitical event) the price is bid up and profits are taken. The difference with bitcoin and the like is that they are much, much smaller and newer markets and so we see far greater volatility.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">We shouldn’t be surprised by the mainstream’s distaste or uncertainty surrounding the currency, in fact we should be hardened and assured by it. This is the same treatment we see for gold, something which humanity has held faith in for thousands of years.</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">The attention towards bitcoin and its recent price performance is not only validation for itself but also for gold and silver. Whilst bitcoin’s price rise might mainly be down to speculation it is also thanks to a growing desire to hold investments outside of the financial system. This, validates the role of precious metals. In time, we will see speculators become investors and investors become diversifiers. This is good for those holding gold and silver, as explained in&nbsp;<a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/bitcoin-gold-outlook-safe-haven/">January</a>:</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><em>Increasingly, gold and bitcoin may be&nbsp;seen as very much complementary assets, but bitcoin buyers should be aware of the volatility of bitcoin and of how speculative it remains today. Those considering buying should only own a very very small percentage of their wealth in bitcoin. While gold and silver can constitute as much as 20% of a diversified portfolio – bitcoin should be less than 3% or 4% of one’s wealth.</em></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><em>Also, if buying bitcoin, it is prudent&nbsp;to apply the same logic to owning&nbsp;bitcoin as they do for gold – diversify, own the currency in the safest ways possible – including some offline in secure ‘cold’ storage and monitor the wider political, financial and monetary environment.</em></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>News and&nbsp;Commentary</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>Here's What It Would Take for Gold to Hit $2,000 (Fool.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>Hedging Against Political Volatility With Gold (Bloomberg.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>Government Silver Sales Have Totally Dried Up… WHY? (SilverSeek.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>Gold's Days of Glory Beginning As Dollar's Are Ending (GoldSwitzerland.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>RBC's Louney Says Gold Exposure Is Key Amid Risky Markets (Bloomberg.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>Gold steady near 4-week highs as geopolitical worries support (Reuters.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://news.goldcore.com/gold-silver-bullion-news-prices-203/"><strong>Gold books highest settlement in a month, 3rd straight weekly rise (MarketWatch.com)</strong></a></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><a href="http://info.goldcore.com/7-real-risks-to-your-gold-ownership" rel="attachment wp-att-5047"><img src="http://www.goldcore.com/news/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2016/03/7RealRisksBlogBanner.jpg" alt="7RealRisksBlogBanner" width="822" height="430" style="height: auto; max-width: 100%;" class="alignnone wp-image-5047" /></a></p> <table class="mce-item-table" style="border-style: dashed; border-color: #bbbbbb; color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;" width="431"> <tbody> <tr> <td style="font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; border-top: 1px dashed #bbbbbb; border-bottom: 1px dashed #bbbbbb; border-left: 1px dashed #bbbbbb; border-right-style: dashed; border-right-color: #bbbbbb;" width="431"><strong><a href="http://t.hsms10.com/e1t/c/*W3c1h-f2yFG_PW19WP1M5kdPLx0/*W65XS2h17yWxXW4TYMFp2mTHmw0/5/f18dQhb0S66-6tQRn0L_FxRSwVK2W4_p94n4-GjnKW6tYdCn3lfV8kV-jQ-X7vDSgnW8YxPwn7K2zJxW8Fb0YM3fFKSNW2lBjs771l7nxW7CK3561s_ppDW4kKkP65Sbs-0VFwDd45MBppHW1G4SZm3s8YyNN2GDPd8J0L9tW7h1cRM6twFYbW131lrg77jyTtW3DBscq8g1RyzW6x0kZn8cq2qJW19g83v6Gm9MDN7Wbvss4bKDhW25Z4C049bLP6Vjyltj93rsVhW6JkBXr2b3QB4V_K63j2jLZBRW2G4Pwd86v5fXVCDgNw2dG0lDW2vdDGL8516WdW34jPTW1xkD3GN6sZRP5-vxg9W6m1yf41BvRC6W5vzwyC2KqQ24W8vCXCM5qnvfrVJ4fHj6k-whXW76-C7y31lN42W2RMd147p1dzKW8WcfY65vWccxW5jrXx75FCP0GW3MNR2Y4q2BwXW19R8rX8Dwk0fVY7v4b2DH0HMVMS0ks57VdNWW4VCMVK5HKDclW89fpZl56QxBkW78w6SD7B5H6ZW8NhMCV2GZ9hpW4tJ4wj6YTPhbW6VXYn-82s59gW8WBB9760kp7zf4FL4KJ02">Avoid&nbsp;Digital&nbsp;&amp; ETF&nbsp;Gold&nbsp;– Key&nbsp;Gold&nbsp;Storage Must Haves</a></strong></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>Gold Prices (LBMA AM)</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">29 May: USD 1,265.00, GBP 983.41 &amp; EUR 1,127.87 per ounce<br />26 May: USD 1,265.00, GBP 983.41 &amp; EUR 1,127.87 per ounce<br />25 May: USD 1,257.10, GBP 969.48 &amp; EUR 1,119.57 per ounce<br />24 May: USD 1,251.35, GBP 963.29 &amp; EUR 1,119.58 per ounce<br />23 May: USD 1,259.90, GBP 969.62 &amp; EUR 1,119.17 per ounce<br />22 May: USD 1,255.25, GBP 967.17 &amp; EUR 1,123.07 per ounce<br />19 May: USD 1,251.85, GBP 962.17 &amp; EUR 1,122.03 per ounce</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong>Silver Prices (LBMA)</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;">29 May: USD 17.29, GBP 13.45 &amp; EUR 15.41 per ounce<br />26 May: USD 17.29, GBP 13.45 &amp; EUR 15.41 per ounce<br />25 May: USD 17.15, GBP 13.23 &amp; EUR 15.29 per ounce<br />24 May: USD 17.03, GBP 13.14 &amp; EUR 15.22 per ounce<br />23 May: USD 17.14, GBP 13.22 &amp; EUR 15.25 per ounce<br />22 May: USD 16.95, GBP 13.04 &amp; EUR 15.10 per ounce<br />19 May: USD 16.77, GBP 12.90 &amp; EUR 15.02 per ounce</p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong><br />Recent Market Updates</strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/silver-bullion-secret-bull-market/">-&nbsp;Silver Bullion In Secret Bull Market</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/invest-fortune-gold-inaugural-lecture-dr-brian-lucey/">-&nbsp;Should I Invest My Fortune in Gold? Inaugural Lecture by Dr Brian Lucey</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/gold-silver-bullion-now-treated-money-arizona/">-&nbsp;Gold and Silver Bullion Now Treated As Money In Arizona</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/manchester-attack-sees-asian-stocks-fall-gold-firm/">-&nbsp;Manchester Attack Sees Asian Stocks Fall, Gold Firm</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/james-rickards-gold-decisive-turn-around-next-stop-1300-higher/">-&nbsp;James Rickards: Gold’s “Decisive Turn Around” – “Next Stop Is $1,300 Or Higher”</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/gold-silver-bullion-coins-see-sales-explosion-uk-wave-political-turmoil/">-&nbsp;Gold and Silver Bullion Coins See Sales “Explosion” In UK On “Wave Of Political Turmoil”</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/gold-investment-ultimate-guide-tech-investors-500-words/">-&nbsp;Gold Investment Is the Ultimate Guide for Tech Investors In 500 Words</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/gold-spikes-heavy-volume-trump-u-s-political-mess/">-&nbsp;Gold Spikes On Heavy Volume On Trump, U.S. Political “Mess”</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/cyber-wars-crash-markets-threat-humanity-rickards-buffett/">-&nbsp;Cyber Wars Could Crash Markets and Threat To Humanity – Rickards and Buffett</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/cyber-attacks-show-vulnerability-digital-systems-digital-currencies/">-&nbsp;Cyber Attacks Show Vulnerability of Digital Systems and Digital Currencies</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/history-gold-facts/">-&nbsp;History of Gold – Interesting Facts and Changes Over 50 Years</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/u-s-gold-exports-china-india-surge-2017/">-&nbsp;U.S. Gold Exports To China and India Surge In 2017</a></strong><br /><strong><a href="http://www.goldcore.com/us/gold-blog/dream-central-banker/">-&nbsp;The Dream of the Central Banker</a></strong></p> <p style="color: #333333; font-family: Georgia, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, &quot;Bitstream Charter&quot;, Times, serif; font-size: 16px;"><strong><a href="http://info.goldcore.com/goldcore_email_subscription_preferences" target="_blank">Access Award Winning Daily and Weekly Updates Here</a></strong></p> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-29/whats-going-bitcoin#comments Alternative currencies B+ Bitcoin Bitcoin Business Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance China CoinDesk Cryptocurrencies Currency Digital currency ETC Finance India Japan Legality of bitcoin by country or territory Money North Korea payment processors Precious Metals Reserve Currency Reuters SSE 50 Twitter Twitter Virtual currency law in the United States Volatility Yuan Mon, 29 May 2017 11:46:11 +0000 GoldCore 596862 at http://www.zerohedge.com