en Turkey Releases Alleged Recording Of Warning To Russian Pilot <p>Earlier today, Russia announced that special forces were indeed able to rescue one of the two pilots that ejected from the Su-24 shot down by Turkish F-16s near the Syrian border on Tuesday.&nbsp;</p> <p>In the 36 or so hours since the incident, both Moscow and Ankara have been busy trying to “prove” their respective sides of the story. Turkey swears the Russian warplane was warned as many as 10 times on the approach and was only engaged once it entered Turkish airspace. Russia says the pilots knew the area “like the back of their hands” and that Ankara shot the plane down in the skies above Syria.&nbsp;</p> <p>Here’s what rescued co-pilot Konstantin Murahtin <a href="">had to say earlier today</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>"There were no warnings. Not via the radio, not visually. There was no contact whatsoever. That's why we were keeping our combat course as usual. You have to understand what the cruising speed of a bomber is compared to an F-16. If they wanted to warn us, they could have shown themselves by heading on a parallel course. But there was nothing. And the rocket hit our tail completely unexpectedly. We didn't even see it in time to take evasive maneuvres."</em></p> </blockquote> <p>Now, a recording of Turkey warning the Russian Su-24 has surfaced apparently courtesy of a civilian pilot from a Lebanese airline (who we imagine may get some questions from Hezbollah in the near future). Here’s <a href="">The Telegraph’s</a> summary:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>An audio recording has emerged purporting to be the recording of Turkey warning the Russian plane.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>The voice is heard saying in English: <strong>“Unknown air traffic position onto Humeymim 020, redirect to 26 miles. This is&nbsp;</strong></em><strong><em style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Turkish Air Force speaking - en guard. You are approaching Turkish airspace. Change your heading south immediately."</em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Earlier today, the surviving pilot claimed that he had not received any visual or radio warning from Turkey - contradicting Turkey's claim that they warned them numerous times.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong><em>The recording was passed on to TV news channel Al-Arabiya by a civilian pilot for Lebanese airline MEA in the sky at the time.</em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>He claimed that this event had happened multiple times in the last week, with each warning met with silence from Russia.</strong> This clam is not verified.</em></p> </blockquote> <p>And here's the audio:</p> <p><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>From&nbsp;<a href="">Al-Arabiya</a>&nbsp;(you can listen to their recording <a href="">here</a>):</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>A civilian pilot who was in the sky when the Turkish military issued a warning to, and ultimately shot down, a Russian fighter jet has provided Al Arabiya News with a recording that proves the Turkish authorities issued several warnings to the plane.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>The pilot, who was flying a Middle East Airlines (MEA) flight from Beirut’s Rafic Hariri International Airport to a Gulf country at approximately 9:00 a.m. (local Lebanese time) yesterday also verified the authenticity of a similar recording which was uploaded on the information sharing website LiveLeak which many international media outlets have carried.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>“I confirm the authenticity of their recording, I heard these exact same warnings over and over again and the part I recorded on my phone was actually towards the end when I felt the matter was getting serious,” </strong>the Lebanese aviator told Al Arabiya News on the condition of anonymity.</em></p> </blockquote> <p>Later on Wedensday, the Turkish army officially released similar recordings.</p> <p>So draw your own conclusions. Is this concrete proof that the Russian pilots were warned, or does this soundbite come courtesy of the audio/visual wizards at&nbsp;<a href="">Al Hayat Media Center</a>? We'll close with another quote from&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 20.8px; font-size: 1em;">Konstantin Murahtin:&nbsp;</span></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>"I'm going to ask our command to keep me on this base — I have a debt to repay, for my commander."</em></p> </blockquote> <p><em><br /></em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="571" height="294" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Middle East Turkey Wed, 25 Nov 2015 19:10:20 +0000 Tyler Durden 517069 at "We Reduced Our Short In The Euro" - Did Goldman Just Hint Draghi May Do Nothing Next Week <p>Over the past year, there has been no stauncher supporter of the short-EUR trade than Goldman: so staunch in fact that Goldman's top trade for 2015 was basically a short EUR trade (which however ended up being a total loss for anyone who put it on because the EUR did not drop as fast as Goldman had expected <a href=". On the day of the last ECB meeting (October 22), we published an FX Views where we argued that EUR/$ would go to 1.05 in the run-up to the December meeting. We are approaching that level, which makes it natural to ask what is now priced, and if there is scope for a dovish surprise on December 3. We address these questions in this FX Views, but also the big picture, which we think is important. The big picture is that ECB QE, since its announcement in January, has had a troubled history, with volatility in long-term Bund yields – the Euro zone safe-haven asset – far above that of JGB yields (Exhibit 1). That volatility has impaired a key transmission channel of QE, which is to push Euro zone investors into risk assets and thereby boost growth, and is in our minds the main reason why EUR/$ went back to 1.14 in May (Exhibit 2). Next week’s ECB meeting is therefore more than just the usual policy decision. It is about fixing some of the damage from the summer and “doing it like you mean it”. We think that dimension is underappreciated and means that, together with the low risk appetite typical for this time of year, the hurdle is low for a dovish surprise on December 3. We continue to expect EUR/$ to head into the ECB at 1.05, drop 2-3 big figures on the day, and then fall to parity by end-December, aided by a Fed lift-off. As risk-taking resumes in January, the divergence trade should pick up steam, with a possibility that our 12-month forecast of 0.95 for EUR/$ could be reached by end-Q1.">as we noted last week</a>). </p> <p>Which is why we were surprised that with the Euro plunging again today in the aftermath of the latest ECB trial balloon via Reuters, and sliding to a new 7 month low below 1.05, Goldman came out with a sales piece in which it is said that the firm has "<strong>reduced our short in the euro versus US dollar as central bank actions are increasingly priced in to both markets.</strong>" In other words, unlike a year ago, this time the EUR had fallen <em><strong>faster </strong></em>than Goldman expected.</p> <p>To some, this immediately meant that the ECB may get cold feet about engaging the full bazooka, Reuters' earlier trial balloon notwithstanding, and made traders far more focused on the word of ECB governing council member Ardo Hansson who this morning told MarketNews that he "<strong>Sees No Reason For Monetary Easing at Dec Meeting</strong>." Could Draghi have been engaging in nothing more than the latest mega bluff? The question was enough to prompt a rebound in the EURUSD back over 1.06.</p> <p><img src="" width="600" height="316" /></p> <p>But is Goldman turning bullish on the Euro (and bearish on the USD)? </p> <p>Not really. </p> <p>Here is the full reasoning provided by Goldman's Robin Brooks explaining the bind the ECB finds itself in currently, which it still thinks the EUR is heading to 0.95 by Q1 2016, and a whopping, <strong>and US multinationals crushing 0.80 by the end-2017.</strong></p> <p>* * * </p> <p><em>From Goldman's Robin Brooks</em></p> <p>On the day of the last ECB meeting (October 22), we published an FX Views where we argued that EUR/$ would go to 1.05 in the run-up to the December meeting. We are approaching that level, which makes it natural to ask what is now priced, and if there is scope for a dovish surprise on December 3. </p> <p>We address these questions in this FX Views, but also the big picture, which we think is important. The big picture is that ECB QE, since its announcement in January, has had a troubled history, with volatility in long-term Bund yields – the Euro zone safe-haven asset – far above that of JGB yields (Exhibit 1). </p> <p><img src="" width="603" height="264" /></p> <p><strong>That volatility has impaired a key transmission channel of QE, which is to push Euro zone investors into risk assets and thereby boost growth, and is in our minds the main reason why EUR/$ went back to 1.14 in May </strong>(Exhibit 2). </p> <p>Next week’s ECB meeting is therefore more than just the usual policy decision. It is about fixing some of the damage from the summer and “doing it like you mean it”. We think that dimension is underappreciated and means that, together with the low risk appetite typical for this time of year, <strong>the hurdle is low for a dovish surprise on December 3. </strong>We continue to expect EUR/$ to head into the ECB at 1.05, drop 2-3 big figures on the day, and then fall to parity by end-December, aided by a Fed lift-off. As risk-taking resumes in January, the divergence trade should pick up steam, with a possibility that our 12-month forecast of 0.95 for EUR/$ could be reached by end-Q1.</p> <p>As we wrote ahead of the October meeting, conflicting narratives have emerged about ECB QE. One view is that its main purpose is to anchor periphery sovereign spreads, while allowing the yield curve on Bunds to remain somewhat steep. That accomplishes the dual objective of safe-guarding the periphery and helping investors in Germany, who continue to benefit from some roll-down. </p> <p><strong>Another view, however, is that the Bund sell-off in May and subsequent volatility disrupted one of the main channels through which QE is supposed to work. </strong>That view says that the purpose of QE is to stabilize yields on the safe-haven asset at a relatively low level, where the emphasis is on “stability” rather than a specific level. This sets in train a portfolio rebalancing out of the safe-haven asset into risk assets and other currencies, with positive repercussions for growth. We think the Bund sell-off, so quickly after the start of the program, is a key reason why EUR/$ bounced from 1.05 to 1.14 by May and at times went above that. <strong>From our perspective, ECB QE has fallen short in signaling commitment to the portfolio rebalancing channel, in particular since the Bund sell-off in May came amid signs that the Bundesbank – the key stake holder in the Eurosystem – was reducing the maturity of its purchases. </strong>This matters for next week, where there is a larger agenda: repairing some of the damage to ECB QE from the summer.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="263" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>We think there is ample room for President Draghi to push a dovish agenda next week. After all, the debate over ECB policy suffers from what we think of as “Stockholm Syndrome”, where excessively tight policy for too long has conditioned markets to argue for more of the same. With real GDP still below its 2008 peak (Exhibit 3), it is likely that the output gap is bigger than the consensus 2-3 percent (IMF, OECD and European Commission all have estimates in this range). The degree of slack, even accounting for things like hysteresis, is likely to be large, which is also what shows up in our work on the Phillips curve, where inflation is running below what it should be given the unemployment gap. In fact, given the inflationary impulse from the Euro weakening trend since mid-2014, underlying inflation in the Euro zone is likely even lower. We see current consensus for EUR/$ – whereby the cross drops near parity in December but then moves higher again – as embodying this “Stockholm Syndrome” and ignoring the reality that the divergence between the US and the Euro zone is very real and large. This is why we continue to see EUR/$ in a big weakening cycle, reaching 0.80 at end-2017.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="263" /></a></p> <p><strong>With EUR/$ at current levels, markets are pricing around 15bp in an additional deposit cut and a modest amount of further balance sheet expansion. </strong>This is our view because the two big figure drop in EUR/$ on October 22 (the last ECB meeting) priced a 10bp deposit cut and the one big figure move lower on October 23 priced a modest amount of further balance sheet expansion, where we have in the past shown that a one big figure drop in EUR/$ maps roughly into EUR100bn in additional QE. We attribute the bulk of subsequent moves lower to the October 29 FOMC and better-than-expected payrolls (November 6), so that expectations into next week remain relatively low (Exhibit 5). In short, we think the seven big figure drop in EUR/$ since before the October 22 ECB meeting breaks down into three big figures due to the US and four from pricing additional QE easing, which we see as modest. We certainly do not think that surveys for expectations into next week, which are typically for a one year extension of the existing program (i.e. an expansion of the QE program north of EUR 500bn), are reflected in current levels of EUR/$. This is consistent with our read of positioning, where speculative shorts in the CFTC data are now two-thirds of the way to their Q1 peak (CFTC shorts tend to lead EUR/$, likely overstating Euro shorts in the broader market), while option skew (Exhibit 6) remains modest. All this suggests to us that the hurdle for a dovish surprise on December 3 is low. But, as we stress above, what really matters is the big picture. ECB QE so far has a troubled track record. This meeting is about fixing that.</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>So if Draghi pulls a "Draghi" on December 3, and stuns the market by admitting he merely jawboned the ECB's "assured" easing to death, with the EUR now pricing in both a 15 bps rate cut and more QE, and thus making any actual by the ECB meaningless (and why should the ECB actually launch a bazooka round when jawboning is enough) you have been warned. </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="135" height="90" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Germany Option Skew Output Gap Reality Reuters Unemployment Volatility Yield Curve Wed, 25 Nov 2015 18:51:43 +0000 Tyler Durden 517067 at Why We’re Sliding Towards World War <p>Paul Craig Roberts &ndash; former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury under President Reagan, former editor of the Wall Street Journal, listed by Who&rsquo;s Who in America as one of the 1,000 most influential political thinkers in the world, PhD economist &ndash; wrote an article about the build up of hostilities between the U.S. and Russia titled, simply: <a href="">&ldquo;War Is Coming&rdquo;</a>.</p> <p>Similarly, Ronald Reagan&rsquo;s head of the Office of Management and Budget &ndash; David Stockman &ndash; is posting pieces <a href="">warning of the dispute between the U.S. and Russia leading to World War 3</a>.</p> <p>Trend forecaster Gerald Celente &ndash; who has been making some accurate financial and geopolitical predictions for decades &ndash; says <a href="">WW3 will start soon</a>.</p> <p>Investment fund manager and adviser Martin Armstrong has charted the &ldquo;cycles of war&rdquo; back to 600 BC &hellip; and <a href="">says</a> that we&rsquo;ll have major wars between now and 2020. He has written pieces recently entitled, &ldquo;<a href="">Why We will Go to War with Russia</a>&ldquo;, and another one saying, &ldquo;<a href="">Prepare for World War III</a>&ldquo;.</p> <p>Investment adviser Larry Edelson &ndash; who has long studied the &ldquo;cycles of war&rdquo; &ndash; recently <a href="">wrote</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>This year &hellip; we will also be hit by another ramping up of the related war cycles.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>All part and parcel of the rising war cycles that I&rsquo;ve been warning you about, conditions that will not abate until at least the year 2020.</p> </blockquote> <p>Former Goldman Sachs technical analyst Charles Nenner &ndash; who has made some big accurate calls, and counts major <a href="" id="_GPLITA_2" title="Click to Continue &gt; by Text-Enhance">hedge funds</a>, banks, brokerage houses, and high net worth individuals as clients &ndash; <a href="" target="_blank" title="says">says</a> there will be &ldquo;a major war&rdquo;, which will drive the Dow to 5,000.</p> <p>Veteran investor adviser James Dines <a href="" title="forecast">forecast</a> a war as epochal as World Wars I and II, starting in the Middle East.</p> <p>What&rsquo;s causing the slide towards war? We discuss several causes below.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">Debt, Economic Collapse and Distraction</h3> <p>Martin Armstrong &ndash; who studies cycles, and managed multi-billion dollar sovereign investment funds &ndash; argues that war plans against Syria are really about <a href="" target="_blank" title="debt and spending">debt and spending</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The Syrian mess seems to have people lining up on Capital Hill when sources there say the phone calls coming in are overwhelmingly against any action. The politicians are ignoring the people entirely. This suggests there is indeed a secret agenda to achieve a goal outside the discussion box. That is most like <strong>the debt problem and a war is necessary to relief the pressure to curtail spending</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>Armstrong says the same thing caused <a href="">Turkey to shoot down a Russian fighter jet</a> over Syria:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>This mess lies squarely in the hands of the Obama Administration and then to have the audacity to pretend Turkey had a right to defend its airspace when not being attacked is just too much. These people <strong>NEED</strong> war to distract everyone from the Sovereign Debt Crisis that is causing the collapse of governments for a system of borrowing year after year with <strong>ABSOLUTELY</strong> no intention of ever paying any debt off.</p> </blockquote> <p>The same logic applies to Europe and other countries &hellip;</p> <p>Armstrong <a href="" target="_blank" title="wrote">writes</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Our greatest problem is <strong>the bureaucracy wants a war</strong>. This will distract everyone from the NSA and justify what they have been doing. <strong>They need a distraction for the economic decline that is coming</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>Billionaire hedge fund manager Kyle Bass <a href="" target="_blank" title="writes">notes</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Trillions of dollars of <a href="" id="_GPLITA_0" title="Click to Continue &gt; by Text-Enhance">debts</a> will be restructured and millions of financially prudent savers will lose large percentages of their real purchasing power at exactly the wrong time in their lives. Again, the world will not end, but the social fabric of the profligate nations will be stretched and in some cases torn. Sadly, looking back through economic history, <strong>all too often war is the manifestation of simple economic entropy played to its logical conclusion</strong>. <strong>We believe that war is an inevitable consequence of the current global economic situation.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Billionaire investor Jim Rogers <a href="" target="_blank" title="explains">notes</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>A continuation of bailouts in Europe could ultimately <a href="" id="_GPLITA_1" title="Click to Continue &gt; by Text-Enhance">spark</a> another world war, says international investor Jim Rogers.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;Add debt, the situation gets worse, and eventually it just collapses. <strong>Then everybody is looking for scapegoats. Politicians blame foreigners, and we&rsquo;re in World War II or World War whatever</strong>.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Economist and investment manager Marc Faber <a href="" title="says">says</a> that the American government will start new wars in response to the economic crisis:</p> <ul> <li><a href="" target="_blank" title="“The next thing the government will do to distract the attention of the people on bad economic conditions is they’ll start a war somewhere.”">&ldquo;The next thing the government will do to distract the attention of the people on bad economic conditions is they&rsquo;ll start a war somewhere.&rdquo;</a></li> </ul> <ul> <li><a href=";sid=aa4KTmib46Uw&amp;refer=asia" target="_blank" title="“If the global economy doesn’t recover, usually people go to war.”">&ldquo;If the global economy doesn&rsquo;t recover, usually people go to war.&rdquo;</a></li> </ul> <h3 style="color: #000099;">A Handful of People Make a Killing Off War</h3> <p>War is <em>very</em> good for a handful of <a href="" title="defense contractors">defense contractors</a> and <a href="" title="banksters">banksters</a> who make huge sums from backing unnecessary war.</p> <p>America is now <a href=""><em>officially</em> an oligarchy</a>.&nbsp; And a high-level Bush administration official &ndash; Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson &ndash; says that the oligarchy <a href="">controls American war-making decisions</a>.</p> <p>So the people who stand to make a killing from wars push the government into fighting them.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">Voodoo Economics</h3> <p>Many influential <a href="" target="_blank" title="economists">economists</a> and <a href="" target="_blank" title="talking heads ">talking heads</a> hold the <a href="">discredited belief</a> that war is good for the economy.</p> <p>Therefore, many are <a href="" target="_blank" title="overtly">overtly</a> or <a href=";_r=0">more</a> <a href="">subtly</a> pushing for war under the mistaken view that it will help the economy.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">Challengers Give Declining Empires &ldquo;Itchy Fingers&rdquo;</h3> <p>Historians say that declining empires tend to attack their rising rivals &hellip; so the risk of world war is rising <a href="">because the U.S. feels threatened by the rising empire of China</a>.</p> <p>The U.S. government considers <a href="" title="threatening war against any nation which becomes an economic rival"><em>economic rivalry</em> to be a basis for war</a>. Therefore, the U.S. is systematically <a href="" title="using the military to contain China’s growing economic influence">using the military to contain China&rsquo;s growing economic influence</a>.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">Competition for Resources Is Heating Up</h3> <p>In addition, it is well-established that competition for scarce resources often leads to war. For example, Oxford University&rsquo;s Quarterly Journal of Economics <a href="">notes</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>In his classic, A Study of War, Wright (1942) devotes a chapter to the relationship between war and resources. Another classic reference, Statistics of Deadly Quarrels by Richardson (1960),extensively discusses economic causes of war, including the control of &ldquo;sources of essential commodities.&rdquo;A large literature pioneered by Homer-Dixon (1991, 1999) argues that scarcity of various environmental resources is a major cause of conflict and resource wars (see Toset, Gleditsch, and Hegre 2000, for empirical evidence).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In the War of the Pacific (1879&ndash;1884), Chile fought against a defensive alliance of Bolivia and Peru for the control of guano [i.e. bird poop] mineral deposits. The war was precipitated by the rise in the value of the deposits due to their extensive use in agriculture.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Westing (1986) argues that many of the wars in the twentieth century had an important resource dimension. As examples he cites the Algerian War of Independence (1954&ndash;1962), the Six Day War (1967), and the Chaco War (1932&ndash;1935). More recently, Saddam Hussein&rsquo;s invasion of Kuwait in 1990 was a result of the dispute over the Rumaila oil field. In Resource Wars (2001), Klare argues that <strong>following the end of the Cold War, control of valuable natural resources has become increasingly important, and these resources will become a primary motivation for wars in the future</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>Former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan (and <a href="">many world leaders</a>) <em>admitted</em> that <a href="" target="_blank" title="the Iraq war was really about oil">the Iraq war was really about oil</a>, and former Treasury Secretary Paul O&rsquo;Neill <a href="" target="_blank" title="says">says</a> that Bush planned the Iraq war before 9/11. And see <a href="" target="_blank" title="this">this</a> and <a href="" title="this">this</a>. Libya, Syria, Iran and Russia are all oil-producing countries as well &hellip;</p> <p>Indeed, we&rsquo;ve extensively documented that the wars in the Middle East and North Africa are <a href="" title="largely about oil and gas">largely about oil and <em>gas</em></a>. The wars in <a href="">Syria and Iraq are about pipelines</a>.&nbsp; The <a href="">war in Gaza</a> may be no exception. And <a href="">see this</a>. And Ukraine may largely be <a href="">about</a> <a href="">gas</a> as well.</p> <p>And <a href="">James Quinn</a> and <a href="">Charles Hugh Smith</a> say we&rsquo;re running out of <em>all sorts</em> of resources &hellip; which will lead to war.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">Central Banking and Currency Wars</h3> <p>We&rsquo;re in the middle of a <a href=";ie=utf-8&amp;oe=utf-8&amp;aq=t&amp;rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&amp;client=firefox-a" target="_blank" title="global currency war">global currency war</a> &ndash; i.e. a situation where nations all compete to devalue their currencies the most in order to boost exports. Brazilian president Rousseff <a href="" target="_blank" title="said">said</a> in 2010:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The last time there was a series of competitive devaluations &hellip; it <strong>ended in world war</strong> two.</p> </blockquote> <p>Jim Rickards <a href="" target="_blank" title="agrees">agrees</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Currency wars lead to trade wars, which often lead to hot wars. In 2009, Rickards participated in the Pentagon&rsquo;s first-ever &ldquo;financial&rdquo; war games. While expressing confidence in America&rsquo;s ability to defeat any other nation-state in battle, Rickards says the U.S. could get dragged into &ldquo;asymmetric warfare,&rdquo; if currency wars lead to rising inflation and global economic uncertainty.</p> </blockquote> <p>As does billionaire investor <a href="" target="_blank" title="says">Jim Rogers</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Trade wars always lead to wars.</p> </blockquote> <p>Given that China, Russia, India, Brazil and South Africa have joined together to create a <a href="">$100 billion bank</a> based in China, and that more and more trades are being settled in Yuan or Rubles &ndash; instead of dollars &ndash; the currency war is quickly heating up.</p> <p>Indeed, many of <a href="">America&rsquo;s closest allies are joining</a> China&rsquo;s effort &hellip; which is challenging America and the Dollar&rsquo;s hegemony.</p> <p>Multi-billionaire investor Hugo Salinas Price <a href="" target="_blank" title="told">says</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>What happened to [Libya&rsquo;s] Mr. Gaddafi, many speculate the real reason he was ousted was that he was planning an all-African currency for conducting trade. The same thing happened to him that happened to Saddam because the US doesn&rsquo;t want any solid competing currency out there vs the dollar. You know Gaddafi was talking about a <a href="" id="_GPLITA_2" title="Click to Continue &gt; by Text-Enhance">gold</a> dinar.</p> </blockquote> <p>Senior CNBC editor John Carney <a href="" target="_blank" title="noted">noted</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Is this the first time a revolutionary group has created a central bank while it is still in the midst of fighting the entrenched political power? It certainly seems to indicate how extraordinarily powerful central bankers have become in our era.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Robert Wenzel of <a data-nodeid="4387582" href="" target="_blank" title="Economic Policy Journal thinks">Economic Policy Journal thinks</a> the central <a href="" id="_GPLITA_1" target="_blank" title="Click to Continue &gt; by Text-Enhance">banking</a> initiative reveals that foreign powers may have a strong influence over the rebels.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This suggests we have a bit more than a ragtag bunch of rebels running around and that there are some pretty sophisticated influences. &ldquo;I have never before heard of a central bank being created in just a matter of weeks out of a popular uprising,&rdquo; Wenzel writes.</p> </blockquote> <p>Indeed, <a href="" target="_blank" title="some say">some say</a> that recent wars have really been about bringing all countries <a href="" target="_blank" title="into the fold of Western central banking">into the fold of Western central banking</a>.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">Runaway Inequality</h3> <p>Paul Tudor Jones &ndash; founder of the Tudor Investment Corporation and the Tudor Group, which trade in the fixed-income, equity, currency and commodity markets &ndash; <a href="">said</a> recently:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>This gap between the 1 percent and the rest of America, and between the US and the rest of the world, cannot and will not persist.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Historically, these kinds of gaps get closed in one of three ways: by revolution, higher taxes or wars.</p> </blockquote> <p>And <a href="">see this</a>.</p> <h3 style="color: #000099;">War Is Destroying Our National Security, Our Democracy and Our Economy</h3> <p>We spent <em>trillions</em> in Iraq and Afghanistan.</p> <p>Yet we&rsquo;re now <em><a href="">less</a> <a href="">safe</a></em> after 13 years of war.</p> <p>Never-ending wars are also destroying our democratic republic. The Founding Fathers <a href="" title="warned against standing armies, saying that they destroy freedom">warned against standing armies, saying that they destroy freedom</a>. (<a href="">Update</a>). Perversely, our government treats <a href="" title="anti-war sentiment as terrorism">anti-war sentiment as terrorism</a>.</p> <p>The Founding Fathers &ndash; <em>and</em> the father of free market capitalism &ndash; also warned against <a href="" title="financing wars with debt">financing wars with debt</a>. But according to Nobel prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, the U.S. debt for the Iraq war could be as high as <a href=";sid=acXcm.yk56Ko" target="_blank" title="$5 trillion dollars">$<strong><em>5</em></strong> trillion dollars</a> (or <a href=",0,1591279.story" target="_blank" title="$6 trillion dollars"><em>$<strong>6</strong> </em>trillion dollars</a> according to a study by Brown University.)</p> <p>Indeed, top economists say that war is <a href="">destroying our economy</a>.</p> <p>But war is <a href="">great</a> for the <a href="">bankers</a> and the <a href="" title="military-industrial complex">defense contractors</a>. And &ndash; as discussed above &ndash; governments are desperate for war.</p> <p>So it&rsquo;s up to us &ndash; the <em>people</em> &ndash; to stop wider war.</p> Afghanistan Alan Greenspan Brazil Charles Nenner China Federal Reserve Global Economy goldman sachs Goldman Sachs India Iran Iraq Jim Rickards Jim Rogers Joseph Stiglitz Kuwait Kyle Bass Kyle Bass Marc Faber Martin Armstrong Middle East national security Obama Administration Paul Tudor Jones Purchasing Power Sovereign Debt Trade Wars Turkey Ukraine Wall Street Journal Yuan Wed, 25 Nov 2015 18:32:59 +0000 George Washington 517064 at U.S Drillers' Operating Losses Could Surge In 2016 <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Michael McDonald via,</em></a></p> <p><strong>What do you do when all of the low hanging fruit is gone?</strong> That question is one that oil producers are increasingly facing as they confront an oil price slump that is now more than a year old and shows no serious signs of abating. With oil prices having fallen by nearly half over the last sixteen months, it is little wonder that oil companies found their balance sheets under pressure. From Exxon to Continental all oil companies have faced problems in maintaining their capital spending and more importantly, their profitability.<strong> In light of that, it is little wonder that oil companies pulled every lever they could to survive.</strong></p> <p>The vast majority of oil companies have seen their profits <a href="">fall</a> markedly in the last year, and <strong>most companies have turned to the same <a href=";utm_source=yahoo&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=article">three tools</a> in order to cope with falling prices.</strong></p> <p>First of all, <strong>companies have been relying on production growth</strong>. Shale producers especially have done all they can to keep production as high as possible. The idea has been to offset the falling price per barrel with more barrels of output. Some firms, like <a href="">Devon Energy</a>, have been exceptionally successful with this strategy. The problem is that production growth is not sustainable for shale firms in the absence of large amounts of capital spending, which these firms cannot sustain at this point. The declining production curves are simply too great for oil companies to keep the oil flowing without significant new investment. Thus investors should be prepared to see production fall in 2016.</p> <p>Secondly, <strong>cost cuts are also playing a big role at oil companies in sustaining profits</strong>. Oil companies in general are &ldquo;<a href="">sharpening their pencils</a>&rdquo; on cost cuts according to analysts. The supply chain crimp on prices across the entire oil vertical has been severe. From Haliburton to Frank&rsquo;s International, every oilfield supplier has felt the pinch. This has motivated the supply chain to be more efficient in providing services and has let oil companies wring additional savings out of their businesses&rsquo;.</p> <p><strong>These double-digit savings have helped oil companies considerably in maintaining the bottom line, but it is starting to look like that trend <a href="">may be waning</a>. </strong> From Baker Hughes to mom &amp; pop operations, the supply chain simply cannot do much more to help producers. That bodes ill for 2016 profits at oil producers.</p> <p>Finally, and even more important than production growth, <strong>oil producers were as a group fortunate and wise enough to be significantly hedged against the fall in oil prices over the last year. </strong>For much of 2015, oil prices hedges have helped keep oil companies afloat and led to sizeable hedging gains.</p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>The problem is that very few companies hedge out for more than one or two years.</strong></span> As a result, these existing hedges are now starting to roll over which is leading some to predict <a href="">hard times</a> for the industry ahead. Oil companies now face a choice of hedging production at much lower levels per barrel, or of selling production at spot prices and hoping for a rebound.</p> <p><strong>Given hedges have arguably been the biggest source of economic strength for various oil companies, it is likely that many firms will be facing severe operating losses next year.</strong></p> <p>That in turn could finally motivate sellers of oil assets enough to narrow the spread between bids and asks <a href="">on assets</a> which are on the block. More importantly, as those wells continue to decline in output and less capex goes into maintaining them, national oil production could finally start to stagnate or even fall. And that would finally set the stage for a limited rebound in prices. <em><strong>In this case, oil companies do not need to be &ldquo;faster&rdquo; than the &ldquo;oil price bear&rdquo; they just need to be &ldquo;faster&rdquo; than the slower companies in the industry.</strong></em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="410" height="159" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Devon Energy Exxon Wed, 25 Nov 2015 18:30:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 517058 at Who Said It? "A Short-Term Border Violation Can Never Be A Pretext For An Attack" <p>Turkey has a right to defend itself and its airspace, President Obama said on Tuesday after Ankara’s F-16s shot down a Russian Su-24 which Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan claims ventured into Turkish airspace for a grand total of 17 seconds.&nbsp;</p> <p>Similarly, Erdogan said on Wednesday that Turkey was simply acting to defend its security.&nbsp;</p> <p>Of course you can take everything Erdogan says with a grain of salt because if we’re being honest, <strong>he’s an autocrat and largely thanks to his government, Turkey is a tyrannical frontier market masquerading as a largely developed democracy.&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>When it comes to NATO and the West you can always find a contradiction or two (or five) when it comes to foreign policy rhetoric which is why we weren’t at all surprised (although we were amused) with what we found when we <strong>decided to take a look back at what Erdogan said in 2012 after Assad’s air force shot down a Turkish F-4 phantom jet when it crossed into Syrian airspace. &nbsp;</strong></p> <p>Here's a map showing the flight path of the F-4 and where it disappeared (via BBC):</p> <p><img src="" width="554" height="350" /></p> <p>And now, prepare yourself for some of the most epic hypocrisy ever to spew from the mouths of NATO and its allies. From <a href="">BBC ca. 2012</a>:&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong><em>Syria insists the F-4 Phantom jet was shot down inside Syrian airspace.&nbsp;</em></strong><em style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">The plane crashed into the eastern Mediterranean and its two pilots are missing.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Mr Erdogan spoke of Turkey's "rage" at the decision to shoot down the F-4 Phantom on 22 June and described Syria as a "clear and present threat".&nbsp;</em><em style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;"><strong>"A short-term border violation can never be a pretext for an attack," </strong>he said.&nbsp;</em></p> </blockquote> <p>Well, apparently it can, because that's exactly what Turkey did on Tuesday - use a 17 second incursion as an excuse to shoot down a Russian warplane.</p> <p>But it doesn't stop there:&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>In a statement, NATO's 28 members said the shooting down of the plane was "unacceptable" and they stood together with Turkey "in the spirit of strong solidarity".</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Nato Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said: <strong>"It is another example of the Syrian authorities' disregard for international norms."</strong></em></p> </blockquote> <p>It's funny - NATO didn't say Turkey had "disregarded international norms" on Tuesday.&nbsp;</p> <p>And finally:&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em><strong>Turkey has also accused its neighbour of firing on a search and rescue plane looking for the F-4 Phantom jet</strong>, although it was not brought down.</em></p> </blockquote> <p>Oh, you mean kind of like the Turkish-supported and US-armed FSA First Coastal Division did yesterday when they used an American-made TOW to destroy a Russian search and rescue helicopter killing one Russian Marine in the process?</p> <p>Enough said.</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="584" height="353" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> President Obama Turkey Wed, 25 Nov 2015 18:10:37 +0000 Tyler Durden 517062 at Oil Bounce Extends After US Oil Rig Count Continues To Plunge <p>A modest production cut this morning may - or may not - be 'correlated' with the fact that once again the oil rig count declined 9 to 555 rigs, tracking oil's slide. This is the <strong>12th weekly drop in the last 13 weeks to the lowest since June 2010</strong>.</p> <p>Rig count is tracking the lagged crude price...</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="301" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>When does production slow?</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="313" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Charts: Bloomberg</em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="944" height="474" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Crude Wed, 25 Nov 2015 18:09:46 +0000 Tyler Durden 517061 at US Taxpayer Faces $230 Million Loss As Spain's 'Solyndra' Files For Creditor Protection <p><strong><em>&quot;The future of the company seems very black,&quot;</em></strong> notes on trader as the bonds and stocks of Spanish renewbles form Abengoa lives up to its name and files for creditor protection, <a href="">just as we warned was likely</a>. With the stock crashing 70% to 28c and <strong>4-month bonds trading at just 22c on the dollar,</strong> market participants face an almost total loss.. but, <a href="">as we detailed previously, </a>it is the <em><strong>American taxpayer - who thanks to Ex-Im Bank loans to keep this zombie alive - face losses of $230 million </strong></em>as Spain&#39;s Solyndra exposes another symptom of the Oligrachic ignorance of where the money comes from.</p> <p><em><strong>Restructring efforts of the past have failed,</strong></em> <a href="">as Bloomberg reports,</a> Abengoa SA&rsquo;s bonds and stock tumbled to records after the embattled renewable-energy company said it was seeking preliminary protection from creditors following the breakdown of talks with a new investor.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>Abengoa&rsquo;s 500 million euros ($530 million) of bonds maturing in March fell as much as 51 cents on the euro to 12 cents on Wednesday,</strong> while its 550 million euros of bonds due February 2018 dropped as much as 32 cents to 9.8 cents, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Its B shares plunged as much as 69 percent to 28 euro cents.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img height="319" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Abengoa, which employs more than 24,000 people worldwide, has been seeking to reassure investors that it can generate enough cash to service its debt pile of about 8.9 billion euros of consolidated gross debt. </strong>The Seville-based company said earlier this month that Gonvarri Corporacion Financiera, a unit of industrial group Corporacion Gestamp, would become its biggest shareholder after agreeing to acquire a 28 percent stake by injecting new funds.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;The future of the company seems very black,&rdquo;</strong> said Carlos Ortega, a trader at Beka Finance Sociedad de Valores SA. <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>&ldquo;It has a tremendous amount of debt which no bank wants to refinance and now even its partners are backing out.&rdquo;</strong></span></p> </blockquote> <p>Except that, thanks to crony capitalism, US Taxpayers did...</p> <p><u><strong>In 2014, <a href="">as FreeBeacon reports,</a> the Spanish renewable energy company under investigation by at least two federal agencies unveiled a new biofuel production facility that received hundreds of millions of dollars in federal subsidies.</strong></u></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Former employees of the company have alleged that it<strong> routinely engages in violations of U.S. immigration, environmental, and workplace safety laws and uses taxpayer funds to hire foreign workers in violation of federal regulations.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The company<strong> received a $132.4 million loan guarantee and a $97 million grant to build a new biofuel plant Hugoton, Kansas.</strong> Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback attended its ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The announcement of additional subsidies came even as U.S. Customs and Immigration Service and the Department of Labor conduct investigations into potential legal violations by the company.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Both agencies have policies against commenting on ongoing investigations.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>In addition to direct taxpayer support for the company, Abengoa benefitted tremendously from federal mandates for biofuels, according to CEO Manuel Sanchez Ortega.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;This would have been simply impossible without the establishment of the Renewable Fuel Standard,&rdquo; Ortega said, referring to a federal regulation that mandates the use of certain levels of bio energy in transportation fuels.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>And now, less than one year later</strong>, the company seeks creditor protection, which would normally be shrugged off by an American public - meh, what do we care about the bankruptcy of some Spanish energy firm?</p> <p><u><em><strong>Well... combine political influence... US taxpayer subisides... and corruption... and maybe Americans should care...</strong> </em></u><em><a href="">(as Free Beacon details)</a></em></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Mike Alhalabi, a former senior lead mechanical engineer at Abengoa subsidiary Abener who worked on the Mojave facility, said the company routinely skipped right to international hiring, preferring to bring in workers from its native Spain.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>It did so even for menial jobs, Alhalabi recalled.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;They [hired] people to move furniture around and they were all Spanish,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;I mean, this is work that you can hire Americans to do. Why would you bring people from Spain to move furniture around?&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Potentially illegal hiring practices caught the eye of another employee</strong>, who said the company was well aware that it was violating U.S. immigration laws.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;What I came to realize, and it took me a while because I didn&rsquo;t want to realize it, is that they understood. They knew the law. They didn&rsquo;t care,&rdquo; said Lydia Evanson, the former human resources director at an Abengoa subsidiary in Arizona.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;I really came to believe that they&rsquo;re so politically connected that it&rsquo;s just hubris and arrogance,&rdquo;</strong> Evanson said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Alhalabi also saw political connections at work. He noted the involvement of former vice president Al Gore, whose company, Generation Investment Management, bought a stake in Abengoa in 2007.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;Behind the scenes, what brought Abengoa to the United States, based on my research, [was] Al Gore,&rdquo; Alhalabi said in an interview. &ldquo;He promised to bring U.S. dollars to the company.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Alhalabi also singled out Sen. Diane Feinstein (D., Calif.), saying she was part of Gore&rsquo;s team working behind the scenes to support Abengoa&rsquo;s activities in her home state.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Feinstein in 2010 asked then-Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to expedite an environmental review of one of its stimulus-backed solar plants, despite concerns that it could impact endangered species in the area.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The month after she sent a letter to Salazar making the request, Interior&rsquo;s Fish and Wildlife Service signed off on the project.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Salazar attended Friday&rsquo;s ribbon-cutting ceremony for Abengoa&rsquo;s new biofuel facility.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>The company&rsquo;s political connections are emblematic of an industry that remains reliant on taxpayer subsidies, according to William Yeatman, a senior fellow specializing in energy policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>&ldquo;It could not be more clear that this company could not survive without access to government favors from political friends,&rdquo; </strong>Yeatman said, citing its reliance on the Renewable Fuels Standard and continued financial support from DOE.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;Alas, the same can be said for the green energy industry as a whole, which would fast wither and die absent a steady diet of taxpayer and ratepayer subsidies,&rdquo; </strong>Yeatman said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>In addition to its DOE subsidies, Abengoa received $185 million in financing in 2012 and 2013 through the U.S. Export-Import bank as former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson (D) sat on the boards of both the federal agency and the company it was subsidizing.</strong></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Despite extensive federal support for the company, Alhalabi described a culture of disregard for workplace safety and environmental contamination. Concern over high costs has led to lackluster engineering work at the company&rsquo;s Mojave facility that could result in an &ldquo;environmental disaster,&rdquo; he said.</p> </blockquote> <p>Solyndra 2.0? Another one off? <em><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Or another symptom of the Oligrachic ignorance of where the money comes from...It appears US taxpayers can kiss that money goodbye...</strong></span></em></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Abengoa reported a nine-month loss this month. Deloitte, the auditor, said Abengoa&rsquo;s losses, slumping shares and difficulty accessing financing could<u><em><strong> generate &ldquo;significant doubts&rdquo; over its ability to keep operating. </strong></em></u></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&ldquo;The reaction in the market is huge,&rdquo; said Felix Fischer, a credit analyst at independent research provider Lucror Analytics in Singapore. &ldquo;A financial restructuring would be a very messy and lengthy process. There are so many different layers of different liabilities.&rdquo;</strong></p> </blockquote> <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="953" height="506" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> B+ Competitive Enterprise Institute Corruption Creditors Mexico Wed, 25 Nov 2015 17:47:03 +0000 Tyler Durden 517057 at Gold Market Goes Quiet - Do We Hear The Echo Of The Bottom? <p><a href="">Gold Market Goes Quiet - Do We Hear The Echo Of The Bottom?</a></p> <p>Demand for gold is soaring according to the World Gold council’s latest report. The report shows that overall worldwide demand for gold rose by a very significant 33% with the US, Europe, China and Russia all stocking up and pushing demand. Central bankers, lead by Russia, are stocking up aggressively.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">With fundamentals like these, why are gold prices not soaring? Crowd psychology might be one reason. Sol Palha of Technical Investor explains.</span></p> <p><img src="" width="574" height="432" /></p> <p><em>Year-on-Year Changes in Gold Demand, By Category</em> (<a href="">Source: WGC</a>)</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“Fundamentals do not drive the market; they just provide you with a picture to somewhat justify your biased views. What drives the market is emotions, and some technical indicators have the ability to pick up on these emotional changes. Crowd psychology is probably one of the best and least utilized tools when it comes to spotting topping and bottoming action”.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">“From the Technical analysis perspective, gold has one more leg down, but the last leg might or might not be too steep. It will serve to bolster the foolish notion that the Gold bull is dead. Every bull market undergoes a back-breaking correction, and Gold is no exception. We believe the next leg up will yield even larger profits”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Technical Investor“To indicate that a bottom is in place, Gold cannot close below 1050 on a weekly basis; failure to hold above this level should lead to a test of the 1000 ranges, with a possible overshoot to $950”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">“From the mass psychology perspective, Gold is very close to putting in a bottom. Sentiment investors, contrarian investors and investors who are familiar with the concept of mass psychology should consider taking a closer look at the precious metal’s sector now”.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Read of Palha’s analysis: “<a href="">Is Gold on the verge of a breakout?</a>”</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Read more on the <a href=""> blog</a></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Other sources:</em></p> <p>- <a href="">Gold Bullion Demand Surges 27% In Q3 – New Chinese “Buying Spree"</a></p> <p>- <a href="">The Gold Bull is Dead</a> - Tactical Investor</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">DAILY PRICES</strong></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Today’s Gold Prices: USD 1072.20, EUR 1011.10 and GBP 711.23 per ounce.<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Yesterday’s Gold Prices: USD 1073.00, EUR 1008.32 and GBP 709.67 per ounce.<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">(LBMA AM)</span></p> <p><img src="" width="568" height="342" /></p> <p><em><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Gold in EUR - 1 Month</span></em></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Gold managed a gain yesterday rising $6.70 to close the day at $1075.40. Silver gained a marginal $0.06 to close at $14.17. Platinum lost $4 to $839.</span></p> <p><strong>IMPORTANT NEWS</strong></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Gold rises 1 percent on softer dollar, Turkey-Russia tensions – Reuters<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Gold Ends Higher As Middle East Tensions Spur Haven Demand – WSJ<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Gold extends gains on geopolitical tensions but US rate view drags – Reuters<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Asia Stocks Slip as Syria Angst Buoys Gold; Ringgit Jumps on Oil – Bloomberg<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Wall Street ends higher on energy lift – Reuters</span></p> <p><strong><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">IMPORTANT ANALYSIS</span></strong></p> <p><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">The case for why gold may finally be nearing a bottom – MarketWatch<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">How Roman Coins Found Buried in Swiss Orchard Reinforce Gold Ownership Today – Market Oracle<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Is Gold on the verge of a breakout? –<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">The Success of Irish Economic Austerity: The Joke is on Krugman – Market Oracle<br /></span><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">US Mint has no “sufficient to meet public demand” requirement –</span></p> <p>Read more <a href="">News &amp; Commentary</a> on</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Must-read guides to international bullion storage:</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="167" height="245" /></a></p> <p><a href="" style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">Download Essential Guide to Gold Storage in Switzerland</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="167" height="245" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="">Download Essential Guide to Gold Storage in Singapore</a></p> <p style="line-height: 20.8px;"><span style="line-height: 20.8px; font-size: 1em;">Breaking&nbsp;</span><a href="" style="line-height: 20.8px; font-size: 1em;">News and Research Here</a><span style="font-size: 1em; line-height: 1.3em;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p style="line-height: 20.8px;"><span style="line-height: 1.3em; font-size: 1em;">Follow GoldCore on&nbsp;</span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.3em; font-size: 1em;">Twitter</a><span style="line-height: 1.3em; font-size: 1em;">,&nbsp;</span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.3em; font-size: 1em;">Facebook</a><span style="line-height: 1.3em; font-size: 1em;">,&nbsp;</span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.3em; font-size: 1em;">LinkedIn</a></p> China Krugman Middle East Reuters Switzerland Technical Analysis Technical Indicators Twitter Twitter Wed, 25 Nov 2015 17:30:12 +0000 GoldCore 517034 at Drone Whistleblower: Pilots Often High on Drugs; Refer To Kids As "Fun Size Terrorists" <p class="p1"><a href=""><em>Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,</em></a></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p class="p1"><strong><em>The killings, part of the Obama administration&rsquo;s targeted assassination program, are aiding terrorist&nbsp;recruitment and thus undermining the program&rsquo;s goal of eliminating&nbsp;such fighters, the veterans added. Drone operators refer to children as &ldquo;fun-size terrorists&rdquo; and liken killing them to &ldquo;cutting the grass before it grows too long,&rdquo; said one of the operators, Michael Haas, a former senior airman in the Air Force. Haas also described widespread drug and alcohol abuse, further stating&nbsp;that&nbsp;some operators had flown missions while impaired.</em></strong></p> <p class="p1">&nbsp;</p> <p class="p1"><strong><em>Haas also described widespread alcohol and drug abuse among drone pilots. Drone operators, he said,&nbsp;would frequently get intoxicated using&nbsp;bath salts and synthetic marijuana to avoid possible drug testing and in an effort to &ldquo;bend that reality and try to picture yourself not being there.&rdquo; Haas said that he knew at least a half-dozen people in his unit&nbsp;who were using bath&nbsp;salts&nbsp;and&nbsp;that drug use had &ldquo;impaired&rdquo; them during missions.</em></strong></p> <p class="p1">&nbsp;</p> <p class="p1">&ndash; From the Intercept article:&nbsp;<a href="">Former Drone Operators&nbsp;Say They Were &ldquo;Horrified&rdquo; by Cruelty&nbsp;of Assassination Program</a></p> </blockquote> <p class="p1">I&rsquo;ve highlighted the plight of several brave drone whistleblowers over the years who came forth to decry the barbaric and likely illegal nature of the U.S. drone program. Recently, four of them came together to denounce it more forcefully and provide more disturbing information. They also wrote a letter to Obama.</p> <p class="p1"><a href=""><em>The</em> <em>Intercept</em> published</a> a powerful story on them the other day, here are a few excerpts:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p class="p1"><em><span class="s1">U.S. DRONE OPERATORS&nbsp;are inflicting heavy civilian casualties and have developed an institutional culture callous to the death of children and other innocents, four&nbsp;former operators said at a press briefing&nbsp;today in New York.</span></em></p> <p class="p1">&nbsp;</p> <p class="p1"><em><span class="s1">The killings, part of the Obama administration&rsquo;s targeted assassination program, are aiding terrorist&nbsp;recruitment and thus undermining the program&rsquo;s goal of eliminating&nbsp;such fighters, the veterans added. <strong>Drone operators refer to children as &ldquo;fun-size terrorists&rdquo; and liken killing them to &ldquo;cutting the grass before it grows too long,&rdquo; said one of the operators, Michael Haas, a former senior airman in the Air Force.</strong> Haas also described widespread drug and alcohol abuse, further stating&nbsp;that&nbsp;some operators had flown missions while impaired.</span></em></p> <p class="p1">&nbsp;</p> <p class="p1"><em>In addition to Haas, the operators are former&nbsp;Air Force&nbsp;Staff Sgt. Brandon Bryant along with&nbsp;former senior airmen Cian Westmoreland and Stephen Lewis. The men&nbsp;have conducted kill missions in many of the major theaters of the post-9/11 war on terror, including Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.</em></p> <p class="p1">&nbsp;</p> <p class="p1"><em>&ldquo;We have seen the abuse firsthand,&rdquo; said&nbsp;Bryant, &ldquo;and we are horrified.&rdquo;</em></p> </blockquote> <p class="p1">Recall Bryant was the guy who quit after a supervisor tried to tell him <strong><a href="">a little kid they killed was just a dog</a></strong>.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong><em>Haas also described widespread alcohol and drug abuse among drone pilots. Drone operators, he said,&nbsp;would frequently get intoxicated using&nbsp;bath salts and synthetic marijuana to avoid possible drug testing and in an effort to &ldquo;bend that reality and try to picture yourself not being there.&rdquo; Haas said that he knew at least a half-dozen people in his unit&nbsp;who were using bath&nbsp;salts&nbsp;and&nbsp;that drug use had &ldquo;impaired&rdquo; them during missions.</em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>The operators said that they felt increasing urgency to speak out in the wake of the deadly terrorist attacks in Paris last week; they believe drone assassinations have fed the rise of the extremist group the Islamic State, which has claimed responsibility for the attacks.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>In their open&nbsp;letter to Obama, the former drone pilots made a similar&nbsp;point, writing that during their service they &ldquo;came to the realization that the innocent civilians we were killing only fueled the feelings of hatred that ignited terrorism and groups like ISIS,&rdquo; going on to describe the program as &ldquo;one of the most devastating driving forces for terrorism and destabilization around the world.&rdquo;</em></p> </blockquote> <p>Read the full letter the drone whistleblowers sent to Obama <a href="">here</a>.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="239" height="162" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Afghanistan Iraq Obama Administration Reality Wed, 25 Nov 2015 17:21:05 +0000 Tyler Durden 517056 at CEO Of Brazil's "Goldman Sachs" Is Arrested <p>Several years ago, when Brazil's economy was roaring on the coattails of the Chinese commodity boom, the country's Grupo BTG Pactual was transformed into the largest independent investment bank in Latin America by the golden boy of Brazil's finance - billionaire Andre Esteves. </p> <p>Alas, over the past year as Brazil's economy imploded, BTG had been grappling with fallout from his firm’s loans and investments in companies linked to the nation’s biggest-ever corruption scandal.</p> <p>According to an <a href="">old Bloomberg profile </a>of Esteves, having disrupted an entrenched industry dominated by old-line banking dynasties, traditional banks and foreign lenders, Esteves became a billionaire before turning 40, then joked that his firm would become “<strong>better than Goldman</strong>”, a play on the company’s name.</p> <p>It was not meant to be, not because of rising concerns about the bank's financial health but because unlike executives linked to Goldman in every way imaginable, earlier today the CEO of "better than Goldman" was arrested in the corruption probe touching everyone from the country's petrol-producing giant Petrobras, to president Rouseff herself, one which has shaken the country’s political and economic leadership and left the economy reeling in the deepest depression it has suffered in 80 years.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="498" height="373" /></a></p> <p>Televised images showed Esteves being escorted by a police officer into the federal police office in Rio de Janeiro. He sported a white button-down shirt, no tie and light stubble on his face as he walked past reporters to an elevator.</p> <p>Sandra Goncalvez Pires, a partner at law firm Rao &amp; Pires Advogados, said the banker is accompanied by a lawyer at the police station in Rio. She said his defense team is researching the arrest order, which allows for Esteves to be held for as many as five days and can be extended. BTG Pactual said in an e-mailed statement that it is cooperating with the investigation and is willing to explain whatever is necessary to authorities. </p> <p><iframe src="" width="500" height="281" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Nope, sorry, that would never happen to Lloyd Blankfein.</p> <p>According to <a href="">Bloomberg</a>, the Supreme Court authorized the warrant to detain the financier on suspicion he and the leader of the government coalition in the Senate, Delcidio Amaral, allegedly tried to interfere in testimony related to a pay-to-play scheme at the state-run oil giant, Petroleo Brasileiro SA, according to a court document. BTG and Petrobras are partners in a troubled oil-rig supplier. Amaral was also arrested, making him the highest-ranking politician so far to be ensnared in the scandal.</p> <p>Esteves has been involved in various deals with Petrobras over the years, most notably Sete Brasil. BTG teamed up with Petrobras and other partners in 2010 to create the rig-supplier whose former operating chief admitted in plea bargains to crimes of corruption.</p> <p>The arrest came as a surprise for most Brazil watchers and ushers in a new phase of a massive graft scandal that has "crippled Brazil’s economy and left President Dilma Rousseff fighting for her political survival. The nation’s currency and stocks, which had stabilized in recent weeks after being in a freefall for much of the year, posted the worst drop among major markets Wednesday amid concern the scandal will prolong political gridlock and the longest recession since the Great Depression.</p> <p>The stock of BTG promptly plunged on the news to the lowest in years, losing a third of its value in seconds after the news, making a mockery of a March 30 analysis by Morgan Stanley which said that “we think the market is significantly underestimating BTG’s earnings recurrence,” with analysts Jorge Kuri and Felipe Salomao adding that “black-box” concerns "one of the key misconceptions that the market has had on the company." Turns our the "black box" concerns were quite warranted.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="499" height="261" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>But why would Brazil take such a draconian step as arresting like arresting one of its most prominent bankers? According to Leme Investimentos fixed income manager Paulo Petrassi, this took place because the "<strong>CEO believed he was too powerful to be arrested</strong>."</p> <p>Yet another way BTG never quite made it to "better than Goldman" status.</p> <p>He added that BTG is very active in swaps market, one of biggest players in the mkt, so volume will fall, even more. It will also impact the Brazilian economy even further as Brazil's velocity of money is set to slow down even more now that its largest banks is incapacitated indefinitely. </p> <p>More details <a href="">from Bloomberg</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>The sweeping investigation into Petrobras -- dubbed “Carwash” by prosecutors after a gas station used to launder money -- has helped make Brazil’s real the world’s worst-performing major currency this year. Brazil’s economy is forecast to shrink more than 3 percent this year, according to a central bank survey of economists. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Esteves has been involved in various deals with Petrobras over the years, most notably Sete Brasil. BTG teamed up with Petrobras and other partners in 2010 to create the rig-supplier whose former operating chief admitted in plea bargains to crimes of corruption. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>New arrests suggest the full impact of Carwash, or Lava Jato in Portuguese, “is still to come,” Joao Augusto de Castro Neves, director of Latin America for political consulting firm Eurasia Group, said in a note to clients Wednesday. “<strong>BTG Pactual has exposure to the oil and gas sector, and the arrest of its CEO is the first time the Lava Jato probe raises the earnest prospect of financial contagion.”</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Even so, many Brazilians were stunned by the unexpected arrest of the CEO: "<strong>The arrest of Mr. Esteves, the most high-profile figure in Brazilian finance, takes the Petrobras probe to a whole new level and shows the depth and breadth of a scandal that’s engulfing Brazil’s political and corporate establishment</strong>," said Nicholas Spiro, managing director at Spiro Sovereign Strategy, in London. "The scandal is becoming more debilitating by the day and is severely undermining the prospects for any kind of meaningful economic reform.” </p> <p>Amaral allegedly tried to convince former Petrobras director Nestor Cervero, who was arrested in January, to not mention him or Esteves in testimony to federal prosecutors, according to a document of the accusations read aloud in Brasilia Wednesday by Judge Teori Zavascki. Cervero’s family would have received 50,000 reais ($13,000) every month in the proposal, and Esteves “would bear the burden of financial aid,” according to the document. The offer also included a promised 4 million-real payment to Cervero’s lawyer.</p> <p>Eduardo Marzagao, a spokesman for Amaral, said he was “surprised” by the arrest. “It must be a big mistake," he said. </p> <p>Well, yes, when rich and powerful people are arrested for embezzling billions, it is usually a "big mistake" as it means that someone's palms were not greased enough. </p> <p>Now compare to the US, where any executives working for the "one and only" original Goldman will <strong>never </strong>be threatened with the perp walk shown above. Just in case there is any confusion which the banana republic truly is...</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="1200" height="900" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Brazil Corruption fixed goldman sachs Goldman Sachs Great Depression Lloyd Blankfein Morgan Stanley Recession Testimony Wed, 25 Nov 2015 17:11:26 +0000 Tyler Durden 517055 at