http://www.zerohedge.com/fullrss2.xml/PhoneBook en Meet Danny Moses: The Head Trader Who Actually Put "The Big Short" Trade On http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/danny-moses-big-short-and-beyond <p><a href="http://investorfieldguide.com/danny/"><em>Authored by Patrick O&#39;Shaughnessy via InvestorsFieldGuide.com,</em></a></p> <p>My guest this week is<strong> Danny Moses, who was directly in the middle of the biggest trades in market history,</strong> chronicled by Michael Lewis in his book the Big Short.</p> <p><em><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_moses.jpg"><img height="357" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_moses_0.jpg" width="600" /></a></em></p> <p><strong>Danny was the head trader on the Frontpoint team led by Steve Eisman,</strong> which was one of a small group of firms that figured out, in real time, the dire situation with mortgage-backed securities during the financial crisis, and how to build a portfolio to bet against the U.S. housing market.</p> <p>We cover his part in the Big Short story, but also lots of other interesting ground, including the state of sell-side research and financial markets. I love conversations with traders because they live and breathe market risk. You&rsquo;ll be able to see why quickly in this great conversation with Danny Moses.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" height="90" mozallowfullscreen="" msallowfullscreen="" oallowfullscreen="" scrolling="no" src="//html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/5294890/height/90/width/640/theme/custom/autonext/no/thumbnail/yes/autoplay/no/preload/no/no_addthis/no/direction/backward/render-playlist/no/custom-color/38b6cd/" style="border: none" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="640"></iframe></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Show Notes</strong></span></p> <p>2:57 &ndash; (first question) &ndash; &nbsp;The four traits that would give someone the best odds to succeed as an analyst</p> <p>7:40 &ndash; Danny&rsquo;s take on his role during the financial crises, which was highlighted in &lsquo;The Big Short.&rsquo;</p> <p>14:47 &ndash; Looking at the first moment that there was something wrong but that there was a way to trade against it during the crisis</p> <p>17:13 &ndash; <strong>Exploring the moment when Danny had to reconcile an amazing trade against a dangerous scenario for the US economy</strong></p> <p>20:17 &ndash; What was the relationship with the other people that discovered parts of this unraveling</p> <p>22:19 &ndash; <strong>Danny recounts working with Michael Lewis</strong></p> <p>24:16 &ndash;&nbsp;<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Flash-Boys-Wall-Street-Revolt/dp/0393351599/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1493002067&amp;sr=1-1&amp;keywords=flash+boys">Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt</a></p> <p>24:40 &ndash; Going back to the auto lending crisis in the 1990&rsquo;s</p> <p>28:22 &ndash; The evolution of the sell side, what&rsquo;s good about it today and what was bad about in the early 2000&rsquo;s.</p> <p>34:55 &ndash; <u><strong>Why the markets appear to be broken right now</strong></u></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><em><strong>&quot;It&#39;s all about how you get paid... this is the worst, in aggregate, that Wall Street research has ever been, because I believe it is compromised... fundamental investing has gone by the wayside, you&#39;re better off knowing which ETFs hold this stock than what this company even does.. that&#39;s scary to me.&quot;</strong></em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>&quot;In order for us to get back to fundamentals mattering, the market needs to have a major crash or unwind.&quot;</strong></em></p> </blockquote> <p>37:20 &ndash; How markets were much different back in the 1990&rsquo;s and what made them more interesting.</p> <p>40:16 &ndash; Has the information provided by the sell-side to the buy side gone down since the financial crisis because the quality of research is lower</p> <p>43:24 &ndash; What was about financial services that Danny found attractive for an active strategy?</p> <p>47:14 &ndash; <strong>What was the first idea where Danny was applying his filter and realized the market had it wrong.</strong></p> <p>48:11 &ndash;&nbsp;<a href="https://www.amazon.com/When-Genius-Failed-Long-Term-Management/dp/0375758259">When Genius Failed: The Rise and Fall of Long-Term Capital Management</a></p> <p>49:01&nbsp; &ndash; How did Danny think about valuation as part of the bottom up framework?</p> <p>55:30 &ndash; <strong>Danny tells the story of how his friend Ira had to run and help bail out Dominque Strauss Kahn, the head of the IMF at the time.</strong></p> <p>58:30 &ndash; The Fixer</p> <p>58:40 &ndash; How do you become the bail bondsmen to the stars</p> <p>1:01:02 &ndash;&nbsp;<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Open-Autobiography-Andre-Agassi/dp/0307388409">Open: An Autobiography</a></p> <p>1:01:25 &ndash; What is next for Danny Moses?</p> <p>1:02:33 &ndash;The root of Danny&rsquo;s interest in doing media.</p> <p>1:04:52 &ndash; Kindest thing anyone has ever done for Danny</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="921" height="548" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170429_moses.jpg?1493493196" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/danny-moses-big-short-and-beyond#comments Economic bubbles Economics Economy English-language films Finance Financial crisis flash Great Recession in the United States Housing Market International Monetary Fund Michael Lewis Short Steve Eisman Systemic risk The Big Short Sat, 29 Apr 2017 23:25:32 +0000 Tyler Durden 594860 at http://www.zerohedge.com "I Kept My Promise To Americans": Trump Explains What He Did In His First 100 Days http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/i-kept-my-promise-americans-trump-explains-what-he-did-his-first-100-days <p>In an article just <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/president-trump-in-my-first-100-days-i-kept-my-promise-to-americans/2017/04/29/ad1c9574-2cfd-11e7-a616-d7c8a68c1a66_story.html?utm_term=.647c004976eb">published in the Washington Post</a>, Donald Trump looks back at his first 100 days in office and explains, in his own words, how he &quot;kept his promise to Americans.&quot; As we <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/100-days-trump-nation-divided">showed earlier</a>, it is likely the case that those who origianlly voted for Trump will agree, while those who voted for Hillary, will not.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/chartoftheday_9167_100_days_of_trump_a_nation_divided_n.jpg"><img height="356" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/chartoftheday_9167_100_days_of_trump_a_nation_divided_n_0.jpg" width="500" /></a></p> <p><em>Here is Donald Trump, <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/president-trump-in-my-first-100-days-i-kept-my-promise-to-americans/2017/04/29/ad1c9574-2cfd-11e7-a616-d7c8a68c1a66_story.html?utm_term=.647c004976eb">as posted in the WaPo.</a></em></p> <p><u><strong>&quot;In my first 100 days, I kept my promise to Americans&quot;</strong></u></p> <p>One hundred days ago, I took the oath of office and made a pledge: We are not merely going to transfer political power from one party to another, but instead are going to transfer that power from Washington, D.C., and give it back to the people.</p> <p>In the past 100 days, I have kept that promise &mdash; and more.</p> <p>Issue by issue, department by department, we are giving the people their country back. After decades of a shrinking middle class, open borders and the mass offshoring of American jobs and wealth, this government is working for the citizens of our country and no one else.</p> <p>The same establishment media that concealed these problems &mdash; and profited from them &mdash; is obviously not going to tell this story. That is why we are taking our message directly to America.</p> <p>We have opened the White House doors to listen, engage and act. We&rsquo;ve invited in labor leaders, factory owners, police officers, farmers, veterans and Democrats, Republicans and independents.</p> <p>The change began with the <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2017/01/23/president-trump-signs-order-to-withdraw-from-transpacific-partnership/?utm_term=.848f81740824" shape="rect">termination of the Trans-Pacific Partnership</a> &mdash; a 12-nation pact that would have shipped millions more jobs to other countries.</p> <p>But leaving the TPP was only the beginning. We have also launched an investigation into foreign trading abuses and taken steps to protect the production of American steel and aluminum. After years of federal contracts going to foreign bidders, we are ensuring that government agencies enforce &ldquo;Buy American&rdquo; rules and give preference to American companies &mdash; and that American companies hire American workers.</p> <p>Crucially, to bring back our jobs, we are going to pursue a complete renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement: We&rsquo;ve lost nearly a third of our manufacturing jobs in the 23 years since that terrible deal was approved.</p> <p>At the center of our economic agenda, we&rsquo;ve undertaken the most far-reaching effort in history to remove job-killing regulations. <a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/01/30/presidential-executive-order-reducing-regulation-and-controlling" shape="rect">I&rsquo;ve ordered</a> that for every one new regulation, two old regulations must be eliminated. We&rsquo;ve signed a record <a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/04/25/president-trumps-100-days-historic-accomplishments" shape="rect">13 Congressional Review Act resolutions</a> to scrap job-crushing regulations, and I&rsquo;ve signed 29&thinsp;pieces of legislation in total &mdash; a mark not surpassed in the first 100 days since Harry S. Truman.</p> <p>Those newly enacted laws include <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-extends-private-sector-health-care-program-for-vets/2017/04/19/75f350da-2517-11e7-928e-3624539060e8_story.html?utm_term=.3ea24e5e2272" shape="rect">Veterans&rsquo; Choice</a> legislation &mdash; which became law while at the same time we&rsquo;ve increased by <a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/04/27/remarks-president-trump-signing-executive-order-improving-accountability" shape="rect">42 percent</a> the number of veterans approved to see the doctor of their choosing. And we&rsquo;ve provided transparency by publishing all wait times at the Veterans Affairs health system online, backed up by a new Veterans Affairs Office of Accountability.</p> <p>On energy, the change has been profound. We&rsquo;ve canceled restrictions on the production of oil, natural gas and clean coal.</p> <p>What we&rsquo;ve accomplished on immigration and criminal enforcement is nothing short of historic. After decades of unending illegal immigration and mass uncontrolled entry, we&rsquo;ve turned the tide as never before &mdash; illegal border-crossings are down 73 percent. Visa processes are being reformed to substantially improve vetting and screening, and we&rsquo;ve launched prototypes and bidding for the border wall to stop the scourge of drugs, human trafficking and illegal immigrants from coming into our country.</p> <p>Federal law enforcement has begun a crackdown on sanctuary cities that harbor criminal aliens &mdash; because we know the first duty of government is to protect American citizens.</p> <p>The Departments of Homeland Security, Justice and State, and the director of national intelligence, have formed an inter-agency group for the express purpose of dismantling transnational criminal cartels. The handcuffs have been removed from our prosecutors, and they&rsquo;re targeting the drug dealers and gang members who prey on our citizens &mdash; and they&rsquo;re working to eradicate the violent cartel MS-13.</p> <p>The change on defense has been profound as well. The Defense Department has begun to rebuild and restore our military readiness. We&rsquo;ve reasserted American leadership by holding the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria accountable for its monstrous use of banned chemical weapons against helpless, innocent civilians. Our successful missile strike enforced the red line that the previous administration drew but ignored, thus restoring our credibility with our friends and our deterrence with our foes. Finally, NATO countries are starting to pay billions of dollars more since I have made clear that the United States expects all of its allies to pay their fair share.</p> <p>I delivered on one of my biggest promises, appointing and confirming a new justice to the Supreme Court who will be faithful to the U.S. Constitution. This is the first time a new justice has been confirmed in the first 100 days in 136 years.</p> <p>As we&rsquo;ve made these changes &mdash; on the border, on our economy, on our security &mdash; confidence has soared. And a survey of manufacturing reveals record-breaking optimism in the future. Consumer confidence hit a 16-year high . Thousands of new jobs are being re-shored back to America &mdash; <a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/02/28/president-trump-delivers-jobs-american-people" shape="rect">including jobs</a> at Ford, General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Sprint, Intel and so many more.</p> <p>We are proving that Buy and Hire American isn&rsquo;t just a slogan &mdash; it&rsquo;s now the policy of the U.S. government. It, along with the many other things we are doing, will Make America Great Again.</p> <p>No longer will we listen to the same failed voices of the past who brought us nothing but war overseas, poverty at home and the loss of companies, jobs and our wealth to countries that have taken total advantage of the United States.</p> <p>The White House is once again the People&rsquo;s House. And I will do everything in my power to be the People&rsquo;s President &mdash; to faithfully, loyally and proudly champion the incredible citizens who love this nation and who call this God-blessed land their home.</p> <p>* * *</p> <p>Separately, Trump is holding a rally in Harrisburg, PA which is expected to start at 7:30pm ET.</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/y9viYq9Z3U4" width="560"></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="980" height="490" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/trump%20face%20dark_3.jpg?1493506370" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/i-kept-my-promise-americans-trump-explains-what-he-did-his-first-100-days#comments American people of German descent Business Chrysler Climate change skepticism and denial Consumer Confidence Department of Defense Donald Trump Donald Trump Ford General Motors national intelligence Natural Gas North Atlantic Treaty Organization Political positions of Donald Trump Politics Politics of the United States Supreme Court The Apprentice Transparency United States US government Veterans Affairs office of Accountability Washington D.C. White House White House WWE Hall of Fame Sat, 29 Apr 2017 22:52:58 +0000 Tyler Durden 594879 at http://www.zerohedge.com EU Deletes UK from Official Map... Two Years Before Brexit http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/eu-deletes-uk-official-map-two-years-brexit <p>This could be the first official map produced by the European Union to <strong>exclude the UK</strong>. But it is also an inaccurate one: <strong><em>the UK is still a member state of the EU</em></strong>.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_brexit.png"><img height="868" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_brexit.png" width="558" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://bigthink.com/strange-maps/eu-deletes-uk-from-official-map-nil-two-years-before-brexit"><em>As BigThink.com&#39;s Frank Jacobs writes, </em></a>the map <strong>shows the unemployment rates of the member states</strong> &ndash; and the stark differences for those rates between member states in the north and south of the Union. But the eye is immediately drawn to the land mass of the United Kingdom: <strong><em>coloured not in the blues or oranges that indicate unemployment rates in the EU, but the grey of the non-member states that dot the map.&nbsp;</em></strong></p> <p>Those non-members include the usual suspects: Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, Andorra, Albania and five of the seven post-Yugoslav states (Bosnia, Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo and Macedonia; Slovenia and Croatia have acceded to the EU). Squeezed between Poland and Lithuania is the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad. Russia proper and other countries in eastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa are whited out.</p> <p><strong>The UK now joins the grey countries on the map.</strong> But this is not a map produced to satisfy the wishful thinking of those hardline Brexiteers who can&#39;t wait for 2019. This is an<strong> official publication of the European Commission, one of the highest institutions of the European Union</strong>. Despite the fact that,<u><strong> for almost two more years, the EU still includes Britain.</strong></u></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="736" height="456" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170429_brex.jpg?1493492296" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/eu-deletes-uk-official-map-two-years-brexit#comments Currency East Africa Eastern Europe Eastern Europe Economy Economy of the European Union Euro European Commission European Union European Union Eurozone Iceland Labor Lithuania Member state of the European Union Middle East Middle East North Africa Norway Poland Switzerland Trade blocs Unemployment Unemployment United Kingdom World Sat, 29 Apr 2017 22:30:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594854 at http://www.zerohedge.com MISOC: The U.S. Military's Secret Brand Of Fake News http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/misoc-us-militarys-secret-brand-fake-news <p><a href="http://theantimedia.org/misoc-military-fake-news/"><em>Via TheAntiMedia.org,</em></a></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_MISOC.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_MISOC.jpg" style="width: 561px; height: 288px;" /></a></p> <p>PSYOP/MISOC targets foreign governments, groups, and individuals. The government program is <strong>similar to journalism</strong>, a mode of communication that spreads information, but <strong>often spins the narrative,</strong> <a href="http://www.iwp.edu/news_publications/detail/psyop-expert-discusses-military-information-support-operations">according to</a> Colonel Curtis D. Boyd, Chief of Staff of the JFK Special Warfare Center and School at Fort Bragg, who gave a lecture on &ldquo;<a href="http://www.iwp.edu/events/detail/the-mistry-of-psyop-putting-miso-in-perspective">The MISTRY* of PSYOP: Putting MISO in Perspective</a>&rdquo; in 2011.</p> <p>The mission of the <a href="http://www.soc.mil/MISOC/MISO%20fact%20sheet.pdf">Military Information Support Operations Command</a> (MISOC) is to influence enemy, neutral, and friendly nations and forces into holding favorable opinions and/or taking complementary actions regarding ongoing operations by the United States and its allies.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;<strong><em>Senior ranking U.S. military leaders have so distorted the truth when communicating with the U.S. Congress and American people in regards to conditions on the ground in Afghanistan that the truth has become unrecognizable</em></strong>, &rdquo; Lt. Col. Daniel Davis <a href="https://www.democracynow.org/2012/4/11/active_duty_army_whistleblower_lt_col">told</a> <em>Democracy Now!</em> in 2012.</p> </blockquote> <p>Before his death, Michael Hastings was one of the first to obtain Lt. Col. Davis&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/06/world/asia/army-colonel-challenges-pentagons-afghanistan-claims.html?hp&amp;utm_source=huffingtonpost.com&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_campaign=pubexchange_article">84-page report</a> and published it in<em> Rolling Stone</em> magazine.</p> <p>In February 2012, Hastings was <a href="https://www.democracynow.org/2012/2/15/army_whistleblower_lt_col_daniel_davis">quoted</a> in regard to the report:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;<em>I think it&rsquo;s one of the most significant documents that we&rsquo;ve seen from an active-duty Army officer in terms of how they view the war in Afghanistan, even the war in Iraq. You can look at this as a significant document about the last 10 years of conflict in America. And it&rsquo;s not so much as what Colonel Davis is saying, though that&rsquo;s very important, too. It&rsquo;s the fact that you have a 17-year Army veteran, who&rsquo;s done four tours&mdash;two in Afghanistan and two in Iraq&mdash;who has decided to risk his entire career&mdash;because he has two-and-a-half more years left before he gets a pension&mdash;because he feels that he has a moral obligation to do so</em>.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>MISO manipulates their targets into distributing information using logic, fear, desire, and other mental factors to trigger desired emotions, attitudes, or behaviors. It is vital for MISO communicators to fully comprehend how the target population acts, thinks, and communicates.</p> <p>In 2010, the unpopular Psychological Operations field was <a href="https://www.wired.com/2010/06/military-mulls-new-name-of-psychological-ops-miso/">rebranded</a> as Military Information Support and Operations. <strong>PSYOP = MISO.</strong> The unit, which currently operates under U.S. Army Special Operations Command (<a href="https://www.army.mil/usasoc/">USASOC</a>), is comprised of less than 3,000 members. MISO activities are built upon the idea that human will is shaped by information, beliefs, and perceptions.</p> <p>While speaking to <em>Business Insider </em>about the enactment of the Smith-Mundt Modernization Act of 2012, Lt. Col. Daniel Davis <a href="http://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/US-Government-Funded-Domestic-Propaganda-Has-4668001.php">described</a> MISOC&rsquo;s overall objective of influencing target audiences to hold favorable opinions of the U.S. and its allies by using modes of communication similar to journalism:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;<em>In context, Colonel Leap is implying we ought to change the law to enable Public Affairs officers </em><strong><em>to influence American public opinion</em></strong><em> when they deem it necessary to &lsquo;protect a key friendly center of gravity, to wit US national will.</em>&rsquo;&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>In the <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Defense_Authorization_Act_for_Fiscal_Year_2013">2013 National Defense Authorization Act</a>, the use of psychological operations through propaganda on U.S. civilian populations was <a href="http://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/US-Government-Funded-Domestic-Propaganda-Has-4668001.php">legalized</a>. This type of <a href="https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-112hr5736ih/pdf/BILLS-112hr5736ih.pdf">information warfare</a> comes in the form of propaganda approved by the Broadcasting Board of Governors.</p> <p>Per the <a href="http://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/US-Government-Funded-Domestic-Propaganda-Has-4668001.php"><em>SF Gate</em></a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><em>&ldquo;The </em><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smith%E2%80%93Mundt_Act"><em>Smith-Mundt Modernization Act of 2012</em></a><em> appears to serve this purpose by allowing for the American public to be a target audience of U.S. government-funded information campaigns.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>&ldquo;Lt. Col. Davis also quotes Brigadier General Ralph O. Baker &mdash; the Pentagon officer responsible for the Department of Defense&rsquo;s Joint Force Development &mdash; who defines Information Operations (IO) as activities undertaken to &lsquo;shape the essential narrative of a conflict or situation and thus affect the attitudes and behaviors of the targeted audience.&rsquo;</em>&ldquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Last month, a pair of Military Information Support Operations (MISO) instructors from Special Operations Command Forward Northwest Africa provided training to a small group of Moroccans in Tifnit, Morocco. This opportunity was only possible because of <a href="https://www.defense.gov/News/Article/Article/1106521/flintlock-2017-exercise-enhances-interoperability-in-africa/">Exercise Flintlock 2017</a>, which involved more than 2,000 military personnel from 24 African and western nations.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><em>&ldquo;To conduct good [information operations], good MISO, you need an overall end state for what you&rsquo;re trying to accomplish,&rdquo; </em><a href="https://toinformistoinfluence.com/2017/03/14/psyop-operators-develop-information-support-skills/">said</a> the MISO element leader to Joel Harding.<em> &ldquo;Engaging the people &mdash; getting them the proper amount of information, the right information, through whatever means they receive the information from&mdash;showing them we&rsquo;ll back up what we say with what we&rsquo;ll do, they&rsquo;ll, in turn, trust us or the host nation government.&rdquo;</em></p> </blockquote> <p>A MISO communicator must understand exactly what they are trying to communicate before engaging with a target they seek a connection to, in addition to where and how that information exchange should take place. An <a href="http://docplayer.net/28334576-Reaching-the-target-audience.html">optimized audience analysis</a> is critical for successful MISO actions. In order to be effective, <a href="http://www.marines.mil/Portals/59/MCO%203110.5.pdf">MISO-trained personnel</a> must be experts when it comes to current events, history, culture, linguistics, and socio-political characteristics of their intended audience.</p> <p>MISOC Capabilities:</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZelF95xZK-k" width="560"></iframe></p> <p><u><strong>The EC-130J Commando Solo: Inside The Air Force&rsquo;s Secret Psyops Plane</strong></u></p> <p>Consider any modern U.S. military operation, and chances are that the Air Force&rsquo;s EC-130J Commando Solo MISOC plane was nearby attempting to influence the minds of the civilians below.</p> <p>What exactly does the EC-130J Commando Solo do? The U.S. Air Force uses the Lockheed aircraft <a href="https://www.wired.com/2010/05/inside-the-air-forces-secret-psyops-plane/">in support of psychological operations for MISOC</a>. The specially-modified four-engine Hercules transport is tasked with conducting Military Information Support Operations (MISO) and civil affairs broadcasts in radio, television, and military communications bands.</p> <p>How has the Lockheed EC-130J Commando Solo been modified? The aircraft has received enhanced navigation systems, self-protection equipment, air refueling capabilities, and the ability to broadcast their own signal over AM and FM radio, UHF and VHF television bands, or override broadcast stations on the ground on all worldwide standards. The 193rd Special Operations Wing operates a fleet of three of these EC-130J aircraft.</p> <p>They have quite literally been <strong>converted into flying radio and television stations.</strong></p> <p><strong>Trump April 26th AM Radio Broadcasts From September 2016</strong></p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="true" allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="315" scrolling="no" src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FAnonymousLegionWorldwide%2Fvideos%2F780928438750618%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=560" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" width="560"></iframe></p> <p>A recent internet conspiracy involving two AM radio broadcasts recorded on video in New Jersey and one in Iowa from September 2016 warned of what appeared to be an imminent attack on Washington D.C.<strong><em> Is this how a MISO operation might look to an ordinary civilian? </em></strong>Could conspiracy theories and numerous strange &lsquo;coincidences&rsquo; be manipulated to trigger desired emotions, attitudes, or behaviors in a target audience? Are we suggesting this is what actually occurred? Certainly not. It is impossible to verify without behind-the-scenes access. However, such a tactic seems to match MISOC capabilities and strategy.</p> <p><em>Could this AM radio broadcast have been a trap set in the battlefield of modern media information operations orchestrated by MISOC? Who knows.</em></p> <p>Now here&rsquo;s where things get weird&hellip;</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-66281 size-large" src="http://theantimedia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/18209608_1967228720174698_2096153248_o-1024x514.jpg" style="width: 560px; height: 281px;" /></p> <p><strong>On April 26th, we <a href="https://global.adsbexchange.com/VirtualRadar/desktop.html">tracked</a> an EC-130J Commando Solo plane on radar taking off from an airfield just north of Harrisburg, PA. The Air Force&rsquo;s <a href="https://www.wired.com/2010/05/inside-the-air-forces-secret-psyops-plane/">secret psyops plane</a> then flew to Niagara Falls, lowered altitude, and circled the area multiple times. This occurred during a massive <a href="https://www.aol.com/article/news/2017/04/27/nuclear-attack-drill-underway-outside-new-york-city-nuclear-threat-north-korea/22058019/">nuclear attack drill</a> (<a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-21/operation-gotham-shield-us-govt-simulate-nuke-blast-over-manhattan-actual-war-looms">Operation Gotham Shield</a>) surrounding New York City, in addition to a massive Washington D.C. <a href="https://patch.com/district-columbia/washingtondc/massive-terror-attack-drill-spans-dc-fairfax-arlington-pg-counties">terrorism drill</a>.</strong></p> <p>Throughout the day, we also tracked the following military aircraft:</p> <p><a href="http://www.boeing.com/defense/air-force-one/index.page">Boeing 747-200B</a> (Air Force One)<br /><a href="http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/up-to-2b-to-maintain-upgrade-usas-e4b-naoc-fleet-01671/">Boeing E-4B Nightwatch</a> (Doomsday Plane)<br /><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Saom_nbR5bE">Boeing C-32A</a> (Air Force Two, VP and First Lady)<br /><a href="https://www.defensetech.org/2016/11/18/navy-doomsday-plane-spotted-colorado/">Boeing E-6B Mercury</a> (New Doomsday Plane)<br /><a href="http://www.americanspecialops.com/usaf-special-operations/aircraft/boeing-c-32b/">Boeing C-32B AFSOC</a> (Terror Response, CIA Activities)</p> <p><a href="http://www.af.mil/About-Us/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/104550/ec-130h-compass-call/">Lockheed EC-130H Compass Call</a> (MISOC)</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-66283 size-large" src="http://theantimedia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/18209893_1967228683508035_804487453_o-1024x532.jpg" style="width: 560px; height: 291px;" /></p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-66282 size-large" src="http://theantimedia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/18209633_1967228786841358_567847214_o-1024x367.jpg" style="width: 561px; height: 201px;" /></p> <p>What was the EC-130J Commando Solo doing circling Niagara Falls at a low altitude? Before we get too far ahead of our ourselves, yes, what we witnessed on radar was also observed by civilians on the ground.</p> <p><img class="aligncenter wp-image-66280 size-full" src="http://theantimedia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/18190941_1967228780174692_1244198844_n.jpg" style="width: 561px; height: 146px;" /></p> <p><strong><em>Could the U.S. government be running drills to someday broadcast their own signal over AM and FM radio &mdash; or UHF and VHF television bands &mdash; by <a href="https://www.wired.com/2010/05/inside-the-air-forces-secret-psyops-plane/">overriding</a> broadcast stations on the ground using the EC-130J Commando Solo when the next major terrorist attack, or perhaps an EMP, takes place? Or are they already doing so?</em></strong></p> <p>Could it be that these military aircraft were rehearsing U.S. plans for a doomsday situation? Ironically, or perhaps not, the United States <a href="http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-test-missile-launched-vandenberg-california-20170426-story.html">launched</a> an unarmed intercontinental ballistic missile off the coast California on the very same day &mdash; during escalated tensions with North Korea.</p> <p>MISO carries out missions for the United States Army Special Operations Command (USASOC), and USASOC&rsquo;s job is to synchronize planning of global operations against terrorist networks.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;<em>Military Information Support Operations (MISO), previously known as Psychological Operations (PSYOP), uses themes and messages to reach target audiences in order to influence their emotions, motives, reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.</em>&rdquo; &ndash; Reaching The Target Audience, a <a href="http://docplayer.net/28334576-Reaching-the-target-audience.html">thesis</a> presented to the Faculty of the U.S. Army Command.</p> </blockquote> <p>If MISOC is manipulating targets into spreading information about ongoing operations <strong>using only logic, fear, desire, or other mental factors to trigger specific emotions, attitudes, or behaviors of U.S. civilian populations</strong>, this is exactly how it could be done. This is how it has <strong><a href="http://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-asia-17183739/us-army-does-not-tell-truth">already</a> been done in foreign countries.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;<em>Just as important to understanding NS propaganda is the importance of conducting a thorough Target Audience Analysis(TAA). The process of understanding a target audience is critical to determining if your Target Audience is susceptible and capable of being influenced. If a MISO operator does not understand the depth of an individual&rsquo;s condition, concerns, fears, ambitions, and vulnerabilities, then MISO will not be effective. It is hoped that this document will assist in a more analytical formulation of Target Audience Analysis concepts, plans, programs, themes, and messages that can be synchronized effectively with national policy and commander&rsquo;s mission. MISO can have an incredible impact on a populace if it is planned, synchronized, and conducted properly</em>.&rdquo; &ndash; Reaching The Target Audience, a thesis presented to the Faculty of the U.S. Army Command.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong><em>Have Americans fallen victim to themselves, being psychologically manipulated by their own government into an unknown end goal?</em></strong> A massive campaign USASOC has tasked MISOC with carrying out by using the current events, culture, history, news websites, conspiracy theories, and socio-political characteristics of their intended target audience?</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="699" height="359" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170429_MISOC.jpg?1493491728" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/misoc-us-militarys-secret-brand-fake-news#comments Afghanistan Air Force Boeing Broadcasting Board of Governors Central Intelligence Agency Department of Defense Fort Bragg Information Operations Information warfare Iraq Media manipulation Military Information Support Operations Command New York City North Korea Northwest Africa Pentagon Politics Propaganda Propaganda in the United States Psychological Operations Psychological warfare Special Warfare Center U.S. Army Command U.S. Army Special Operations Command U.S. Congress United States Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command United States Army Special Operations Command United States Army Special Operations Command United States Strategic Communication US Air Force US government War Washington D.C. Sat, 29 Apr 2017 22:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594853 at http://www.zerohedge.com Portland Rose Parade Cancelled Amid Violent Threats From Anti-Fa: "You've Seen How Much Power We Have... Police Can't Stop Us" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/portland-rose-parade-cancelled-amid-violent-threats-anti-fa-youve-seen-how-much-powe <p><a href="http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/portland-rose-parade-cancelled-amid-threats-of-violence-from-anti-fascists-you-have-seen-how-much-power-we-have-police-cant-stop-us_04282017"><em>Authored by Mac Slavo via SHTFplan.com,</em></a></p> <p><strong>For a bunch of peace loving, tolerance spewing social justice warriors, it sure does appear that the new &ldquo;progressive&rdquo; movement in America is&nbsp;rapidly turning to Bolshevik tactics to force their will upon a free and non-violent people.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_antifa.jpg"><strong><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_antifa.jpg" style="width: 544px; height: 303px;" /></strong></a></p> <p><strong>The latest example of a <a href="http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/the-simple-reason-why-a-second-american-civil-war-may-be-inevitable_04212017" target="_blank">society on the brink of civil war</a> comes to us from Portland, Oregon,</strong> where every year the&nbsp;<em>82nd Avenue of Roses Business Association</em> kicks of the city&rsquo;s annual Rose Festival with a family-friendly parade.</p> <p>Except this year, there will be no parade. Organizers have cancelled the event amid threats of violence from groups referring to themselves as&nbsp;&ldquo;Anti-Fascist.&rdquo; According to <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/04/27/portland-rose-parade-canceled-after-antifascists-threaten-gop-marchers/?utm_term=.fb4dc24a7de3" target="_blank">The Washington Post</a>, the reasoning behind the threats is reportedly&nbsp;outrage over the fact that the county&rsquo;s Republican Party was given&nbsp;one of the nearly 100 spots in the parade.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Then came an anonymous and ominous email, according to parade organizers, that instructed them to cancel the GOP group&rsquo;s registration &mdash; or else.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;You have seen how much power we have downtown and that the police cannot stop us from shutting down roads so please consider your decision wisely,&rdquo; the anonymous email said, referring to the violent riots that hit Portland after the 2016 presidential election,&nbsp;reported the Oregonian. &ldquo;This is nonnegotiable.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The email said that 200 people would <strong>&ldquo;rush into the parade&rdquo; and &ldquo;drag and push&rdquo; those marching with the Republican Party</strong>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;We will not give one inch to groups who espouse hatred toward LGBT, immigrants, people of color or others,&rdquo; it said.</p> </blockquote> <p>Earlier this month we reported that members of the so-called anti-fascist, left leaning <a href="http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/there-will-be-blood-left-prepares-for-next-phase-of-resistance-after-berkeley-beat-down-combat-training-better-equipment-guns2_04182017" target="_blank">progressive movements are preparing for war</a> by organizing combat fighting classes and even going so far as to suggest it&rsquo;s time to start bringing guns to such protests as a show of force:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>In short, as predicted, they are <a href="http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/civil-war-is-unavoidable-divided-americans-will-inevitably-turn-toward-militancy-and-mob-action_11302016" target="_blank">turning to militancy and mob action</a> by mobilizing individuals and groups to attend combat training seminars, acquiring better equipment like baseball bats and helmets, and of course, if things really go bad&hellip; guns.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><div><strong>Yes, we seemed to have lost today. The alt-right held their ground. If we wanna take action against them, we need to be better organized and better trained. It doesn&rsquo;t help that it&rsquo;s only the far left opposing them, any trump supporter can be radicalized far easier than any liberal.</strong></div> <div><strong>I hope we learn from today</strong></div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><strong>&hellip;</strong></div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><strong>A shocking number of our <span style="text-decoration: underline;">comrades</span> went in there with absolute no combat training. We need to set up seminars or something of the sort.</strong></div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&hellip;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>We also need better equipment</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><em>Full report: <a href="http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/there-will-be-blood-left-prepares-for-next-phase-of-resistance-after-berkeley-beat-down-combat-training-better-equipment-guns2_04182017" target="_blank">There Will Be Blood: Left Prepares For War After Berkeley Beat Down: &ldquo;Combat Training, Better Equipment, Guns&hellip;&rdquo;</a></em></p> </blockquote> <p>While these folks may think silencing the free speech of political ideologies contrary to theirs through violence is a means to a worthy end, it was&nbsp;the Bolshevik ideology, similar to what we&rsquo;re seeing from &ldquo;comrades&rdquo; &nbsp;in the anti-fascist movement, that eventually gave way to one of the world&rsquo;s most brutal dictators and was responsible for the deaths of, quite literally, over 100 million people in the 20th century.</p> <p>On another and perhaps equally interesting note, we&rsquo;ll mention the fact that for years the Department of Homeland Security and domestic law enforcement agencies had warned Americans that it was lone wolves with conservative values who stockpiled guns, food, bibles and peacefully protested government overreach who were, by officials and congressional members, deemed terrorists.</p> <p><strong>In fact, there were a variety of identifiers used to <a href="http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/do-you-qualify-as-a-domestic-terrorist_04062011" target="_blank">qualify an American citizen as a potential domestic terrorist</a>:</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>So how does a person qualify as a potential domestic terrorist? &nbsp;Based on the training I have attended, here are characteristics that qualify:</p> <ul> <li>Expressions of libertarian philosophies (statements, bumper stickers)</li> <li>Second Amendment-oriented views (NRA or gun club membership, holding a CCW permit)</li> <li>Survivalist literature (fictional books such as &ldquo;Patriots&rdquo; and &ldquo;One Second After&rdquo; are mentioned by name)</li> <li>Self-sufficiency (stockpiling food, ammo, hand tools, medical supplies)</li> <li>Fear of economic collapse (buying gold and barter items)</li> <li>Religious views concerning the book of Revelation (apocalypse, anti-Christ)</li> <li>Expressed fears of Big Brother or big government</li> <li>Homeschooling</li> <li>Declarations of Constitutional rights and civil liberties</li> <li>Belief in a New World Order conspiracy</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p><strong><em>We wonder if similar classifications will be assigned to those who threaten families and children at parades?</em></strong></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="544" height="303" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170429_antifa.jpg?1493481608" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/portland-rose-parade-cancelled-amid-violent-threats-anti-fa-youve-seen-how-much-powe#comments Anti-fascism BATS Behavior Crime Department of Homeland Security Dispute resolution Ethics Human behavior NRA Politics Psychology Republican Party Roses Business Association Social conflict Terrorism Violence Sat, 29 Apr 2017 21:50:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594836 at http://www.zerohedge.com Erdogan Blocks Wikipedia, Bans TV Dating Shows, Purges Another 4,000 Public Officials http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/erdogan-blocks-wikipedia-bans-tv-dating-shows-purges-another-4000-public-officials <p>Two weeks after winning the Turkish constitutional referendum by a modest but decisive margin, president - or perhaps it is now despot - Erdogan decided to take his newly decreed powers for a spin and overnight in rapid succession surprised foreign observers when Turkey decreed that it would ban TV dating shows, fire an additional 4,000 public officials and also ban Wikipedia. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">TURKEY BANS DATING PROGRAMS ON TV AND RADIO: OFFICIAL GAZETTE</p> <p>— zerohedge (@zerohedge) <a href="https://twitter.com/zerohedge/status/858368597600743424">April 29, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>The country's Official Gazette published the decrees on Saturday evening. The first named thousands of civil servants to be dismissed, including nearly 500 academics and more than 1,000 Turkish military personnel. The decree also reinstated 236 people to their jobs. The second decree, among other things, bans radio and television programs for "finding friends and spouses" according to AP.</p> <p>The latest purge follows more than 47,000 people have been arrested and 100,000 have been terminated for alleged connections to terror organizations, and takes place with Turkey under a state of emergency resulting from last summer's failed "coup" attempt which Erdogan blamed on the "shadow state" directed by the cleric Fethullah Gulen, who currently resides in rural Pennsylvania. </p> <p>Erdogan's decree also banned several popular TV dating shows, a move that reportedly had been in the worls for months.&nbsp; </p> <p><strong>"In radio and television broadcasting services, such programmes in which people are introduced to find a friend.... cannot be permitted," </strong>said the text of the decree.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said in March that the ban was in the pipeline, arguing the shows do not fit in with Turkish traditions and customs. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"There are some strange programmes that would scrap the institution of family, take away its nobility and sanctity," Kurtulmus said at the time.</p> </blockquote> <p>Some see in this decree the first traces of Turkey sliding back away from the secular state, established less than a century ago by the creator of modern Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and toward conservative Islam under Erdogan. However, AKP supporters have responded that dating shows receive thousands of complaints every year and the ban is in the public interest.</p> <p>Separately, Turkey also said it had blocked all access to Wikipedia; the country's Information and Communication Technologies Authority implemented the ban against the online encyclopedia because Wikipedia "had failed to remove content promoting terror and accusing Turkey of cooperation with various terror groups" <a href="https://www.afp.com/en/news/205/turkey-blocks-wikipedia-access-bans-tv-dating-shows">according to AFP</a>. "There was no indication when the ban might be removed, with a formal court order expected to follow in the coming days."</p> <p>In response to the news, Wikipedia's founder Jimmy Wales tweeted that "access to information is a fundamental human right. Turkish people, I will always stand with you to fight for this right." </p> <p>In an ironic twist, <a href="https://www.afp.com/en/news/205/turkey-blocks-wikipedia-access-bans-tv-dating-shows">AFP notes </a>that the incident quickly spawned its own separate Wikipedia entry, "Wikipedia blocked in Turkey." <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_block_of_Wikipedia_in_Turkey">This is what it says</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>On the morning of 29 April 2017, following news from Turkey Blocks that all language versions of Wikipedia had been blocked in Turkey, several reports were published of the event. The BBC reported that the Turkish authorities had blocked all access to Wikipedia in the country from 8.00 GMT. No reason was given by Turkey's Information and Communication Technologies Authority which simply stated: ""After technical analysis and legal consideration based on the Law Nr. 5651 [governing the internet], an administrative measure has been taken for this website." Voice of America reported that Turkish media had explained the blockage was a result of "terror-related content". NDTV said that the move had caused strong reactions on the social media against the decision to deny access to "one of the world's most popular websites".</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Law No. 5651, known as the Internet Act (IA), was enacted on 4 May 2007. The purpose of this law has been described by the PTC as follows: "There are 2 reasons for the law to be brought out. The first reason; determining the liability and the responsibility of collective use providers, access providers, location providers and content providers which are the main actors of the Internet. The other reason is to determine the procedures and fundamentals related to the specific crimes committed over the Internet and fighting these through content, location and access providers." More recently, the law has been used to censor individuals, journalists and the media. The European Council's Venice Commission has found the law to be particularly controversial.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Now Wikipedia is readable but not editable with FreeWiki by Crypt.space in Turkey</p> </blockquote> <p>Over the past several years, Turkey has repeatedly blocked - so far on a temporary basis - popular websites such as Facebook and Twitter, usually shortly after major events such as mass protests or terror attacks take place.</p> <p>With Erdogan now having what is effectively absolute power, it is likely that many more shutdowns, this time permament, of popular social networks and media outlets are in Turkey's immediate future, especially as Erdogan is likely poised to coalesce even more power. As the following AFP chart shows, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has been virtually unopposed in 12 successive elections, as well as referendums, since president Erdogan he came to power in 2002.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/erdogan%2012%20vortes%20in%20a%20row.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/erdogan%2012%20vortes%20in%20a%20row_0.jpg" width="500" height="223" /></a></p> <p>Which is to be expected with Europe constantly turning a blind eye to Erdogan's transgressions due to his strategic location at the nexus between Asia and Europe. In the past two years, Erdogan's leverage has only grown as there are now over 2 million Syrian refugees held inside Turkey's borders, which could be deployed in direction Europe, any time Brussels, or Berlin, engages in any activity that Erdogan disproves of. Which also explains how Erdogan managed to accumulate virtually supreme power while all of Turkey's "democratic" peers and neighbors looked the other way. </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="614" height="307" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/erdogan%20angry%20teaser_2.jpg?1493501465" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/erdogan-blocks-wikipedia-bans-tv-dating-shows-purges-another-4000-public-officials#comments Technical Analysis Turkey Twitter Twitter Sat, 29 Apr 2017 21:33:06 +0000 Tyler Durden 594873 at http://www.zerohedge.com NYT's 'Impossible To Verify' North Korea Nuke Claim Spreads Unchecked By Media http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/nyts-impossible-verify-north-korea-nuke-claim-spreads-unchecked-media <p><a href="http://fair.org/home/nyts-impossible-to-verify-north-korea-nuke-claim-spreads-unchecked-by-media/?utm_campaign=shareaholic&amp;utm_medium=twitter&amp;utm_source=socialnetwork"><em>Authored by Adam Johnson via FAIR.org,</em></a></p> <p><strong>Buoyed by a total of 18 speculative verb forms</strong> - five &ldquo;mays,&rdquo; eight &ldquo;woulds&rdquo; and five &ldquo;coulds&rdquo; - New York Times reporters David E. Sanger and William J. Broad (<a href="https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/04/24/world/asia/north-korea-nuclear-missile-program.html?_r=0">4/24/17</a>) <strong><em>painted a dire picture of a Trump administration forced to react to the growing and impending doom of North Korea nuclear weapons</em></strong>.</p> <p><em>&ldquo;As North Korea Speeds Its Nuclear Program, US Fears Time Will Run Out&rdquo; </em>opens by <strong>breathlessly establishing the stakes and the limited time for the US to &ldquo;deal with&rdquo; the North Korean nuclear &ldquo;crisis&rdquo;:</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Behind the Trump administration&rsquo;s sudden urgency in dealing with the North Korean nuclear crisis lies a stark calculus: A growing body of expert studies and classified intelligence reports that conclude the country is capable of producing a nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>That acceleration in pace&mdash;impossible to verify until experts get beyond the limited access to North Korean facilities that ended years ago&mdash;explains why President Trump and his aides fear they are running out of time.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>The front-page summary was even more harrowing, </strong>with the editors asserting there&rsquo;s &ldquo;dwindling time&rdquo; for &ldquo;US action&rdquo; to stop North Korea from assembling hundreds of nukes:</p> <p><a href="http://fair.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/NYTNorthKoreaScreengrab.png"><img alt="NYT: Dwindling Time for US Action as North Korea Hoards Bombs" class="aligncenter wp-image-5588181" src="http://fair.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/NYTNorthKoreaScreengrab.png" style="width: 500px; height: 558px;" /></a></p> <p>From the beginning, the<strong> Times</strong> frames any potential bombing by Trump as the product of a &ldquo;stark calculus&rdquo; coldly and objectively arrived at by a &ldquo;growing body of expert[s].&rdquo; The idea that elements within the US intelligence community may actually desire a war&mdash;or at least limited airstrikes&mdash;and thus may have an interest in presenting conflict as inevitable, is never addressed, much less accounted for.</p> <p>The most spectacular claim&mdash;that North Korea is, <em>at present, &ldquo;</em>capable of producing a nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks&rdquo;&mdash;is backed up entirely by an anonymous blob of &ldquo;expert studies and classified intelligence reports.&rdquo; To add another red flag, Sanger and Broad qualify it in the very next sentence as a figure that is &ldquo;impossible to verify.&rdquo; Which is another way of saying it&rsquo;s an unverified claim.</p> <p>When <a href="https://twitter.com/adamjohnsonNYC/status/856935277302099970">asked on <strong>Twitter</strong></a> if he could say who, specifically, in the US government is providing this figure, Broad did not immediately respond.</p> <p>Other key claims are either not attributed or attributed to anonymous &ldquo;officials&rdquo; (emphasis added):</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Unless something changes, <strong>North Korea&rsquo;s arsenal may well hit 50 weapons by the end of Mr. Trump&rsquo;s term,</strong> about half the size of Pakistan&rsquo;s. <strong>American officials</strong> say the North already knows how to shrink those weapons so they can fit atop one of its short- to medium-range missiles &mdash; putting South Korea and Japan, and the thousands of American troops deployed in those two nations, within range.</p> </blockquote> <p>To offer a bit of outside perspective, Sanger and Broad interview Siegfried S. Hecker, a Stanford professor who directed the Los Alamos weapons laboratory in New Mexico in the late &rsquo;80s and early &rsquo;90s. The only time he speaks directly to the threat, he does so in the context of a nuclear accident:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>At any moment, Dr. Hecker said on a call to reporters organized by the Union of Concerned Scientists, a live weapon could turn into an accidental nuclear detonation or some other catastrophe.</p> <p>&ldquo;I happen to believe,&rdquo; he said, &ldquo;the crisis is here now.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Hecker and other semi-neutral observers (Hecker worked for the Department of Defense for several years) are understandably worried about more nuclear weapons in the aggregate, especially in the hands of a relatively poor country with a <a href="http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2017/04/15/North-Korea-launches-failed-missile-test/9841492300945/">long history</a> of botched missile attempts. But who, exactly, is making the article&rsquo;s most alarmist predictions? It&rsquo;s unclear.</p> <p>Naturally, the specter of North Korea creating an assembly line of nuclear weapons&mdash;by far the sexiest part of the story&mdash;was the lead in subsequent write-ups. Within hours, this meme spread to a half-dozen other outlets:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;North Korea&rsquo;s Growing Nuclear Threat, in One Statistic&rdquo;</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">Here is the most frightening thing you&rsquo;ll read all day: Growing numbers of US intelligence officials believe North Korea can produce a new nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks.</p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&mdash;<strong>Vox</strong> (<a href="http://www.vox.com/world/2017/4/25/15420608/north-korea-nuclear-weapon-trump-kim-jong-un-war">4/25/17</a>)</p> </blockquote> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;North Korea Will &lsquo;Cross The Point of No Return&rsquo; With Sixth Nuclear Test&rdquo;</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">Defense experts estimate that the North is capable of producing a nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks, reports the <strong>New York Times</strong>.</p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&mdash;<strong>Daily Caller</strong>, <a href="http://dailycaller.com/2017/04/25/north-korea-will-cross-the-point-of-no-return-with-sixth-nuclear-test/#ixzz4fILX2A56">4/25/17</a>)</p> </blockquote> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;North Korea Could Produce a Nuclear Weapon Every Six Weeks, Experts Are Warning&rdquo;</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&mdash;<strong>Yahoo News</strong> (<a href="https://uk.news.yahoo.com/north-korea-produce-nuclear-weapon-every-six-weeks-experts-warning-145330313.html">4/25/17</a>)</p> </blockquote> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;Residents of China Fear Radiation From North Korea Nuclear Tests&rdquo; </strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">Experts say the country is capable of producing a nuclear bomb every six or seven weeks, the <strong>New York Times</strong> reported Monday.</p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&mdash;<strong>UPI</strong> (<a href="http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2017/04/25/Residents-of-China-fear-radiation-from-North-Korea-nuclear-tests/3041493133748/">4/25/17</a>)</p> </blockquote> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;China Warns North Korea Will &lsquo;Cross the Point of No Return&rsquo; if It Carries out a Sixth Nuclear Test, as Secretive Country Stages Its &lsquo;Largest Ever Firing Drill&#39;&rdquo; </strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&hellip;amid fears the secretive state can create a nuke every six weeks.<em> </em></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&mdash;<strong>Daily Mail</strong> (4/25/17)</p> </blockquote> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;North Korea Is Capable of Producing a Nuclear Bomb Every Six or Seven Weeks&rdquo;</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">&mdash;<strong>News.com.au</strong> (<a href="http://www.news.com.au/finance/work/leaders/donald-trump-takes-swipe-at-kim-jongun-as-north-korea-conducts-drill/news-story/ec9dd413b0456a7523b1e978a912685d" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">4/26/17</a>)</p> </blockquote> <p>Even <strong>New York Times</strong> columnist Nick Kristof jumped on the meme, magically turning &ldquo;capable of producing&rdquo; into &ldquo;will soon be churning out&rdquo;:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Excellent on the North Korea challenge, as Kim Jong-un will soon be churning out 1 nuke every 7 weeks <a href="https://t.co/jIlZBe2lc6">https://t.co/jIlZBe2lc6</a> by <a href="https://twitter.com/SangerNYT">@SangerNYT</a></p> <p>&mdash; Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) <a href="https://twitter.com/NickKristof/status/856895906003779586">April 25, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p><em>But from whence did this meme come? Who, exactly, made this claim? Is there any dissent within the community of &ldquo;experts&rdquo; on this prediction? Is there an official document somewhere with people&rsquo;s names on it who can later be held accountable if it turns out to be bogus?</em></p> <p><strong>Once again, the essential antecedents of war are being established based on anonymous &ldquo;experts&rdquo; and &ldquo;officials,&rdquo; and hardly anyone notices, much less pushes back.</strong></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="370" height="218" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170429_NYT.jpg?1493488933" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/nyts-impossible-verify-north-korea-nuke-claim-spreads-unchecked-media#comments Business China Department of Defense Donald Trump Foreign relations of North Korea Government of North Korea Japan KIM Mexico Military of North Korea New York Times North Korea North Korea North Korea and weapons of mass destruction Politics Politics of the United States Presidency of Donald Trump radiation Stanford Trump Administration Twitter Twitter U.S. intelligence Union of Concerned Scientists United States US government Sat, 29 Apr 2017 21:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594852 at http://www.zerohedge.com Building the "Perfect" Digital Investment Portfolio & How to Value "Hard to Value" tokens, Pt 1 http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/using-veritas-construct-perfect-digital-investment-portfolio-how-value-hard-value-to <div class="itemIntroText" style="color: #444444; font-size: 18px; font-weight: bold; line-height: 24px; padding-top: 4px; padding-bottom: 12px; font-family: &quot;PT Sans&quot;;"> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">The golden grail of investing is to find that investable asset that provides the greatest reward with the least risk. Alas, despite how commonsensical that precept seems to be, many "professional" investors and analysts seem to miss the point. You often hear, those who only see rewards (or lack thereof, ie. "Hey, Ether went up 150% last year!") or those who only see risks (or lack thereof, ie. "Bitcoin is too volatile to make a good investment"). This last point has been espoused not only be novice retail investors, but by global investment banks, the Financial Times, CNN/Money and even the London Business School. I'm actually quite serious about this (<a href="http://boombustblog.com/blog/item/9232-is-bitcoin-too-risky-whenever-the-bitcoin-is-mentioned-in-financial-pop-media,-ignorance-ensues" style="color: #3498db; outline: none; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: 1.2;">Financial Times, London Business School</a><span style="color: #101010;">&nbsp;and&nbsp;</span><a href="http://boombustblog.com/blog/item/9276-it-s-time-to-beat-up-on-credit-suisse-and-their-woefully-misinformed-bitcoin-advice" style="color: #3498db; outline: none; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; line-height: 1.2;">Credit Suisse</a><span style="color: #101010;">)&nbsp;</span>- all entities that really should know better.</p> </div> <div class="itemFullText" style="color: #101010; font-family: &quot;PT Sans&quot;; font-size: 16px;"> <h2 style="margin-top: 12px; margin-bottom: 12px; line-height: 1.25; color: inherit; text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; font-size: 32px;">The Veritaseum Digital Asset Valuation Framework</h2> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">We've given a lot of thought to the topic of valuation with regards to investment. We have an<a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_sJ0p8u1tsQ" style="color: #3498db;">&nbsp;excellent public track record</a>&nbsp;over the last 10 years, and even more of a record in private performance. We have decided to focus our expertise and experience on the burgeoning digital token ecosystem by creating a Digital Asset Valuation Framework and&nbsp;<a href="https://drive.google.com/open?id=0By5WJsM3KjltOGJHYS1HT3Uyczg" style="color: #3498db;">issuing tokens to support it</a>. The framework encapsulates two aspects:</p> <ol style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px; margin-left: 25px;"> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">The economic performance of the entity's underlying token (risk-adjusted historical reward), and;</li> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">The forensic valuation of the token's issuing entity and its potential and prospects</li> </ol> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">The balance of this article will focus on number one. The next missive will focus on number two and will be deliveed live and in person at my office at 350 Park Avenue, NY, NY. Holders of&nbsp;<a href="https://drive.google.com/open?id=0By5WJsM3KjltOGJHYS1HT3Uyczg" style="color: #3498db;">Veritas (our own token)</a>&nbsp;can purchase custom and bespoke analysis focusing on either. Before we discuss risk-adjusted return, we must first agree on terms. Reward is the total return on the investment. Risk is&nbsp;the actual downside movement of the underlying. This is quite different from the typical academic definition of risk which is generally volatility or deviation from average pricing. The problem with this is long-only holders of assets are actually quite happy to receive upside movement, hnace risk defined as bliteral movement of the asset makes very little practical sense.&nbsp;</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Now, taking that into consideration, a truly realistic risk-adjusted reward analysis shows three out of four of the most popular digital assets handily outperforming most of the global asset classes. If you take the top two risk-adjust reward performers, they handily outrun all popular asset classes and investments from around the world.</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;"><img src="http://boombustblog.com/images/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/portfolio_economic_contribution.png" alt="portfolio economic contribution" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; vertical-align: middle;" /></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Now, many of you may be wondering, "How can assets that are as volatile as Bitcoin and Dash have a better risk-adjusted return then the stock markets?" It's because there are two sides to the risk/reward equation (as stated above) and just focusing on one side can be DANGEROUS! Now matter how risky bitcoin may be, it could still be the investment champion of the world if it throws off enough return to justify the risk. The relationship is actually very simple - Risk is the price one pays for reward. As long as the ratio of risk paid for reward is less than 1:1, your good. In other words, you want to pay $1 of risk for every $2 of reward. You don't want to pay $2 of risk for every $1 of reward, through.&nbsp;</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">On that note, look at the amount of excess (above your benchmark rate, the minimum required for you to be in the market) returns that bitcoin has thrown off relative to the S&amp;P. It's not even close!</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;"><img src="http://boombustblog.com/images/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/Bitcoin_vs_SP_excess_returns.png" alt="Bitcoin vs SP excess returns" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; vertical-align: middle;" /></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Now, when you put your investment portfolio together, you don't only have to worry about the risk of your individual investments, but the risk of the entire portfolio. For instance, you can have a portfolio of only euros. You say to yourself, euros are the default currency of the EMU, and it can't be but so risky since it's volatility is limited (at least historically, and even that can be called into question). So, you sit with a $500,000 portfolio of euro (with the requisite EUR/USD exchange rate risk) and Mario Draghi does his QE/Currency Debasement/NIRP thingy. You're entire portfolio tanks! Why? Because you not only put all of your eggs in one basket, but you got those eggs from the same bird!</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;"><img src="http://boombustblog.com/images/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/EURUSD_fall.png" alt="EURUSD fall" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; vertical-align: middle;" /></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">So, as has been made painfully obvious, economic diversification in your portfolio is key. But don't most of real strong performing assets tend to move in unison, like equity markets? Nope! At least if you are dealing in digital assets...</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;"><img src="http://boombustblog.com/images/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/Digital_assets_-_high_returns_low_correlation.png" alt="Digital assets high returns low correlation" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; vertical-align: middle;" /></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Not only has Bitocin, Ether and Dash totally trounced the reward (not adjusted for risk, see the first chart) of the S&amp;P 500. They not only mostly non-correlated, some actually have a negative correlation. The portfiolo that you see above, not only trounces holding currencies and/or stocks in terms of raw performance and excess returns, it also blows out a forex portfolio, stocks, bonds, and oil in terms of risk-adjusted return as well. As a matter of fact, if I were actively managing this, it would have had a higher return, for we would have known to stay away from Litecoin - alas a topic for a different (and upcoming) discussion.</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Now, how about companies and entities that are launching thier own tokens??? News item:&nbsp;<a href="https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1887061.new#new" style="color: #3498db;">Fastest-Ever ICO: Ethereum-Based Gnosis Creates $300 Mln in Minutes, Raising $12 Mln</a>. Well, no... Note Really!</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;"><img src="http://boombustblog.com/images/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/GNO_token_sales_price.png" alt="GNO token sales price" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; vertical-align: middle;" /></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">&nbsp;Here's what the Gnosis futures are saying about that $29.85 token price.<img src="http://boombustblog.com/images/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/thumbnails/GNO_Futures_on_Bitmex.png" alt="GNO Futures on Bitmex" style="max-width: 100%; height: auto; vertical-align: middle;" /></p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Much has been said about the Gnosis offering, particularly the prices and apparent fervor. There is one thing that I can say about the chatter that I've heard and seen from around the web - It appears that very few have any clue as to how to properly value or financially evaluate an entity such as Gnosis or its token offering. Here's a clue, taking what the tokens sold for and multiplying that by the total Tokens available is nonsense and simply just wrong - and unrealistic.</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">So, what gives? I'll be doing part two of this series live at my office space at 350 Park Avenue in NYC on May 11th at 6pm. Email me at Reggie AT Veritaseum DOT com to RSVP if you are an investor or represent an entity in the buy side industry. We'll discuss token performance analysis and how it fits in the buy side portfolio (the stuff above) as well as token issuing entity valuation - the real interesting stuff. In attendance will be:</p> <ul style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px; margin-left: 25px;"> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">a billion dollar family office;</li> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">several hedge funds;</li> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">one of the world's largest fund administrators;</li> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">finance partner at Sullivan &amp; Worcester;</li> <li style="line-height: 1.5;">partners in one of the most prolific derivative liquidity providers to hedge funds</li> </ul> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">and your buyside firm or institution if you RSVP fast enough.</p> <p style="margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 12px;">Our token offering is actually ongoing now, and our tokens can be redeemed directly back to us for custom and bespoke analysis and valuations, like&nbsp;<a href="https://drive.google.com/file/d/0By5WJsM3KjlteG9TLUZrS1lHMHc/view?usp=sharing" style="color: #3498db;">this 63 page report we did on Google</a>. Our tokens are also the only method of accessing our selective Diigital Asset Exposure DAOs - basically a robot hedge fund that lives totally on the blockchain - with no asset manager or aset management fees. This makes it up to 90% cheaper than a traditional hedge fund. For more information, see&nbsp;<span style="color: #333333; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-weight: bold;">2.&nbsp;</span><a href="https://blog.veritaseum.com/current-analysis/1-blog/220-reggie-middleton-shows-what-happens-when-the-fund-fee-fight-hits-the-blockchain" style="color: #c61017; outline: none; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-weight: bold;">Look What Happens When the Hedge Fund Fee Fight Hits the Blockchain - Redisruption</a>. To purchase our Veritas tokens and learn more about Veritaseum, download our&nbsp;<a href="https://drive.google.com/open?id=0By5WJsM3KjltOGJHYS1HT3Uyczg" style="color: #c61017; background-color: #fff9eb; outline: none; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, sans-serif; font-size: 14px;">Veritas Informational Tear Sheet</a><span style="color: #333333; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; background-color: #fff9eb;">&nbsp;with live links to a plethora of information. or proceed directly to t<span style="font-size: 1em;">he&nbsp;</span><a href="https://docs.google.com/document/d/1n94NIDg_QIxWW4LcDC46VMNqt-h_c4VPMcOCn9BCsUE/pub" style="color: #ed1c24; outline: none; font-size: 1em;">Veritas 2017 Token Purchase: Step-by-Step Tutorial</a><span style="font-size: 1em;">.&nbsp;</span></span>.</p> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/using-veritas-construct-perfect-digital-investment-portfolio-how-value-hard-value-to#comments Actuarial science Bitcoin Bitcoin Business Credit Suisse Cryptocurrencies default Economy Equity Markets European monetary union Finance Financial ratios Financial risk Google Hedge fund Investment Investment management London Business School Money S&P 500 Sharpe ratio Volatility Sat, 29 Apr 2017 20:35:07 +0000 Reggie Middleton 594870 at http://www.zerohedge.com Panic Bank Run Leaves Canada's Largest Alternative Mortgage Lender On Edge Of Collapse http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/furious-bank-run-leaves-canadas-largest-alternative-mortgage-lender-verge-collapse <p>After two years of recurring warnings (<a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-07-30/liar-loans-pop-canada%E2%80%99s-magnificent-housing-bubble">both on this website </a>and <a href="https://twitter.com/AlderLaneeggs">elsewhere</a>) that Canada's largest alternative (i.e., non-bank) mortgage lender is fundamentally insolvent, kept alive only courtesy of the Canadian housing bubble which until last week had managed to lift all boats, Home Capital Group <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/canadas-housing-bubble-explodes-its-biggest-mortgage-lender-crashes-most-history">suffered a spectacular spectacular implosion </a>last week when its stock price crashed by the most on record after HCG revealed that it had taken out an emergency $2 billion line of credit from an unnamed counterparty with an effective rate as high as 22.5%, indicative of a business model on the verge of collapse .</p> <p>Or, <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/canadas-housing-bubble-explodes-its-biggest-mortgage-lender-crashes-most-history">as we put it</a>, Canada just experienced its very own "New Century" moment. </p> <p><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/HCG%20teaser_0.jpg" width="500" height="281" /></p> <p>One day later, it <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-27/crashing-canadian-mortgage-lender-bailed-out-321000-retired-ontario-healthcare-worke">emerged </a>that the lender behind HCG's (pre-petition) rescue loan was none other than the Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP). As Bloomberg reported, the Toronto-based pension plan - which represented more than 321,000 healthcare workers in Ontario - gave the struggling Canadian mortgage lender the loan to shore up liquidity as it faces a run on deposits amid a probe by the provincial securities regulator. Home Capital had also retained RBC Capital Markets and BMO Capital Markets to advise on “strategic options” after it secured the loan. </p> <p>Why did HOOPP put itself, or rather its constituents in the precarious position of funding what is a very rapidly melting ice cube? The answer to that emerged when we learned that HOOPP President and CEO Jim Keohane also sits on Home Capital’s board and is also a shareholder. But how did regulators allow such a glaring conflict of interest? According to the Canadian press, Keohane had been a director of Home Capital until Thursday, but said he stepped away from the boardroom on Tuesday to remove the conflict of interest when it became clear HOOPP might step in as a lender.</p> <p>Keohane further clarified on Friday that he doesn’t view the Home Capital investment as risky because <em><strong>the pension plan will be provided with $2 worth of mortgages as collateral for every $1 it lends to Home Capital.</strong></em></p> <p>“We take comfort from the underlying asset portfolio, so we are not looking at Home Capital as a credit,” said Mr. Keohane in an interview with Business News Network television. He added that a correction in the housing market is not of great concern, since the values of homes would need to plummet by more than 65 per cent for the fund to make no return beyond the value of its principal commitment.</p> <p>Furthermore, it appears that Canada's pensioners are priming all other company lenders: Keohane also said that the funding syndicate would rank above Home Capital’s other lenders.</p> <p>“We have security interest in the collateral we’ve received, so we have the right to sell that collateral if we don’t get paid. And then the balance that’s left over would go to recovery for other creditors.”</p> <p>The implication is that as long as HCG's mortgages dont suffer greater than 50% losses, HOOPP's pensioners should be money good. Of course, if this is indeed Canada's "subprime moment", any outcome is possible. As for other lenders, or the prepetition (because there will be a petition here, the only question is when and in what form) equity, that's some $4 billion in assets that was just stripped from existing collateral.</p> <p><strong>"The Best Price May Come From Breaking Up The Company"</strong></p> <p>In any case, the company's frenzied, emergency measures to stabilize the near-insolvent mortgage lender were not nearly enough, and despite HCG stock posting a modest rebound on Friday between hopes of a rumored sale and a short squeeze, those hopes may be dashed soon because <a href="http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/home-capital-bleeds-another-290-million-of-withdrawals/article34841709/">as the Globe and Mail reports</a>, the depositor bank run that gripped Home Capital Group in the past week, only got worse after the company revealed just how precarious its funding situation had become. </p> <p>First, any hope the company, or rather its investors may have held of a sale, appear dashed. Investment banking sources cited by the G&amp;M said "the best possible price may come from breaking up the company and selling portions of its mortgage portfolio to regional financial institutions." Which also implies that aside from a few select assets, there is no equity value left, or in other words, any potential buyer is now motivated to wait until HCG liquidates, and then picks off the various assets in bankruptcy court.</p> <p>There are structural limitations as well: Home Capital currently holds $18-billion in home loans outstanding, "a portfolio that would be difficult to swallow for rivals in the alternative mortgage sector, such as credit unions, small mortgage lenders, Montreal-based Laurentian Bank and Edmonton-based Canadian Western Bank." These institutions, along with private equity firms, could still bid for pieces of Home Capital, the G&amp;M admits. The only question is why they would do so before a bankruptcy filing.</p> <p>While one prominent name features on the list of potential buyers, that of PE giant J.C. Flowers whose CEO J. Christopher Flowers earlier this year said he expected to expand the company’s Canadian real estate lending business, Canada’s six big banks are notable for their absence on a list of bidders. The reason is that Home Capital lends money to home buyers who have been turned down by the major banks and none of these institutions is expected to enter the alternative mortgage sector by acquiring the company. </p> <p>National Bank of Canada proactively called the equity analysts who follow the company this week to say it would not bid on Home Capital after being asked if it was a potential buyer. Needless to say, the big banks would be quite delighted if one of their "bottom picking" competitors would suddenly go bankrupt.</p> <p><strong>"When you have a bank run people get spooked"</strong></p> <p>Which brings us to the most imminent risk facing Home Capital Group, and its subsidiary, Home Trust.</p> <p>Recall, that on Thursday we observed that as concerns about HCG's viability mounted, depositors were quietly pulling their funding from from savings accounts at subsidiary Home Trust. By Wednesday, when Home Capital revealed it was seeking a $2-billion loan to backstop its sinking savings deposits, shareholders ran for the exits, driving down the company’s share price by 65 per cent on Wednesday alone, and heightening the sense of panic.</p> <p>On Friday, the company revealed that <strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">high-interest savings account balances fell another 36% to $521-million by Friday morning, down by a whopping $293 million from $814-million Thursday and more than $2-billion a month ago</span>.</strong></p> <p>In other words, had it not been for the emergency HOOPP loan, the company would likely be insolvent as of this moment following what may be the biggest bank run in recent Canadian history; which also explains why the interest rate on the loan is above 20%.</p> <p>“When you have a run on the bank, people get spooked and they sell and ask questions later,” said a Bay Street investment banker. “It’s investor psychology that takes over.”</p> <p>As is usually the case, regulator appeared on the scene.... just one day too late.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Canada’s banking industry regulator, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI), has gathered data from other financial institutions this week, both to monitor for signs of a broader depositor panic and to track where funds are moving as they leave Home Trust. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>OSFI sent an urgent request Wednesday to several smaller and mid-sized financial institutions and credit unions to provide the regulator with up-to-date information about their savings accounts, according to a source. Specifically, OSFI wanted to know the institutions’ most recent account totals for high-interest savings accounts, as well as data on recent redemptions and current levels of high-quality liquid assets.</p> </blockquote> <p>The request, which the OFSI said had to be fulfilled "as soon as institutions are able", is seen as an attempt to take the pulse of the market by tracking where deposits flowing out of Home Capital may be going, and to gauge whether there is any contagion among other institutions. In recent days, some smaller and mid-sized institutions have also struck up early-stage discussions about whether multiple institutions could join together to explore a deal to buy some of Home Capital’s assets.</p> <p>As for Canada's big banks, they have already decided that HCG won't survive. Several months ago, Canaccord Genuity Group Inc. told its financial advisers they could no longer steer investors to high-interest savings accounts at Home Capital or rival alternative mortgage lender Equitable Bank. Client money already placed with either bank had to be moved within 60 days.</p> <p>Then, after Home Capital revealed in March it was under investigation by the Ontario Securities Commission over its disclosure practices, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce introduced a cap of $100,000 per client for purchases of Home Capital guaranteed investment certificates (GICs), which is the maximum level covered by Canada’s deposit insurer.</p> <p>A spokesperson from Royal Bank of Canada said that, “several weeks ago” the bank introduced a $100,000 cap on Home Capital GICs bought through a full-service broker, although there were no limits for purchases through the firm’s discount brokerage. On Thursday, RBC also released the following entertaining price target scenario: it still has a price target of $8 but fear not, even if RBC is wrong, it promises at least $4/share in residual value. We are not quite as optimistic.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/rbc%20target.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/rbc%20target_0.jpg" width="500" height="434" /></a></p> <p>Additionally, late last week, Bank of Nova Scotia said it would stop selling all GICs sold by Home Trust, but said Monday that policy was amended to a limit of $100,000. Bank of Montreal’s brokerage unit also confirmed it has a $100,000 limit on Home Trust GICs but would not say when it went into force.</p> <p>As G&amp;M adds, the OSC news shook investors, but the panic was heightened as news of the banks' moves to cap investor deposits slowly seeped through Bay Street in subsequent days, raising concerns that major financial institutions were pulling away from Home Capital.</p> <p><strong>"We Are Out Of The Position"</strong></p> <p>When asked if Home Capital could survive this run on its deposits, Keohane - formerly at HOOPP, and the company's last remaining source of funding - said it was possible. “I think it’s a viable business,” he said. “Their cost of funding is going to go up, which may impact earnings… it’s always a possibility that some other institution may have an interest in taking the entity over. If you can have access to a lower funding cost, I mean, it’s quite an attractive purchase.”</p> <p>Most disagree, and it is safe to assume that the depositor run won't stop until every last dollar held at HCG has been withdrawn. </p> <p>Meanwhile, late on Friday, Home Capital’s second biggest shareholder, Calgary-based QV Investors disclosed that it liquidated its position, selling 8.4 million shares. QV Investors previously held a 12.8% stake in Home Capital. Toronto-based Turtle Creek Asset Management is Home Capital’s biggest shareholder with 13.6% stake. </p> <p>On Saturday another prominent investor bailed, when Calgary-based Mawer Investment Management sold 2.75 million shares of the alternative lender, CIO Jim Hall said told Bloomberg in a phone interview. “We are out of the position,” Hall said.&nbsp; Mawer also has reduced holdings in Canadian alternative- lender Equitable Group.</p> <p>All these investors will now be forced to explain to their LPs how they missed a ticking timebomb which so many, this website included, had warned about for year. </p> <p><strong>Home Without The Capital Group</strong></p> <p>As for Home Capital Group, or more aptly <em>Home Without The Capital Group,</em> the future is bleak, and a bankruptcy liquidation appears the most likely outcome. What impact such an event will have on the broader Canadian housing market remains to be seen. Last week, shortly after HCG's rescue loan announcement stunned the otherwise sleep Toronto tape, the Canadian housing regulator <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/canada-housing-regulator-warns-strong-evidence-housing-market-problems">warned of "strong evidence of housing-market problems</a>." Looking back in a few months, that may prove to be a vast understatement. </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="620" height="349" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/HCG%20teaser.jpg?1493497690" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/furious-bank-run-leaves-canadas-largest-alternative-mortgage-lender-verge-collapse#comments Asset-based lending Bank Bank of America Home Loans Bank of Canada Bank Run Banking Business Capital Markets Creditors Economy Finance Financial institutions Financial services Great Recession Home Capital Group Housing Bubble Housing Market Loans Money Mortgage broker Mortgage loan New Century Non-bank financial institution None Ontario Securities Commission Private Equity RBC Capital Markets Real estate recovery Sat, 29 Apr 2017 20:33:34 +0000 Tyler Durden 594869 at http://www.zerohedge.com Goldman Warns The Gap Between Stock Investors' Hopes & Reality Is Close To An All-Time High http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/goldman-warns-gap-between-stock-investors-hopes-reality-close-all-time-high <p><strong>If US GDP growth were tracking sentiment data alone, Goldman estimates the US economy would be growing at its fastest rate of the post-crisis period... </strong>But as many saw yesterday - crushing the hopes and dreams of a multitude of over-confident asset-gatherers and commission-takers.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170428_gdp11.jpg"><img height="315" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170428_gdp11_0.jpg" width="600" /></a></p> <p>As Goldman Sachs&#39; Himmelberg notes, <strong>the music has yet to stop for market sentiment. </strong>Sentiment indicators are running extremely high among both households and small businessmen. While there are <strong>some signs of a peak in the sentiment surveys,</strong> the soft data are still near the highest levels of this expansion.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman1.jpg"><img height="315" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman1_0.jpg" width="600" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Exhibit 1 drills deeper into the soft data to see precisely where the improvements have been coming from.</strong> The cell values in this table (illustrated by the heatmap) show the levels of GDP growth implied by the univariate regressions of our broad CAI on each indicator (plus 12 lags). Both activity-oriented surveys (like ISM) and pure sentiment surveys (like NFIB Small Business Optimism) are running &ldquo;hot&rdquo;, while &ldquo;hard&rdquo; data indicators, like industrial production, are running cooler (although still quite strong). And the implied magnitudes of GDP growth are unrealistically high, with the <u><strong>Conference Board&rsquo;s index of consumer expectations implying GDP growth of nearly 5%, and the NFIB&rsquo;s small business optimism index implying growth of 6.8%.</strong></u></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman3.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman3_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 450px;" /></a></p> <p><strong>Sentiment is running high in surveys of investor sentiment as well.</strong> The International Center for Finance at Yale School of Management surveys retail and institutional investors for their views on current valuations and one-year-ahead expected returns. In previous reports we have commented on the degree to which expectation measures have been running ahead of measures that survey current conditions. We can similarly use the Yale data to compare &ldquo;expected one-year returns&rdquo; to the assessment of &ldquo;current market valuations&rdquo;.</p> <p>The patterns are remarkably similar. Just as in surveys of consumers and businesses, for investors (both retail and institutional), the post-election rise in expectations for year-ahead returns has materially outpaced their relatively sober assessments of valuation. As a result, the difference between the two survey questions &ndash; &ldquo;expected returns&rdquo; minus &ldquo;current valuation&rdquo; &ndash; is close to an all-time high.</p> <p><strong>Exhibit 2 plots this difference for both institutional and retail investors. </strong>In October, 83% of institutional investors expected the market to rise in the coming year, while 50% thought the market was too rich. By March, 99% expected the market to be higher in a year&rsquo;s time, while the percentage who thought valuations were stretched was roughly flat at 49%.<strong> In short, optimism appears to be no less pervasive among investors than it is among households and small business.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman4.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman4_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 499px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><u><strong>Goldman concludes, we continue to worry that sentiment has moved ahead of the (hard) data, that this divergence will close from the top down.</strong></u></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman2.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/27/20170429_goldman2_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 312px;" /></a></p> <p>And that is a long way down.</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="824" height="429" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170429_goldman5.jpg?1493487458" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-29/goldman-warns-gap-between-stock-investors-hopes-reality-close-all-time-high#comments Business Commodity markets Conference Board Conference Board Consumer Consumer confidence index Economic indicators Economy Finance Foreign exchange market Fundamental analysis goldman sachs Goldman Sachs Goldman Sachs Institutional Investors International Center for Finance Investor Sentiment Market Sentiment Market sentiment Money NFIB Reality Stock market Yale Yale School of Management Sat, 29 Apr 2017 20:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594845 at http://www.zerohedge.com