en Biden Blasts Trump-Putin Plan "To Collapse The Liberal International Order" <p>In a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Joe Biden took aim at president-elect Trump and Russian president Putin in what is likely his final public appearance as US vice-president.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="364" /></a></p> <p><strong>The speech was long on scaremongery and war rhetoric and short on 'fact', </strong>as<a href=""> The Wall Street Journal reports,</a> Mr. Biden said cooperation between the U.S. and Europe formed <strong>“the bedrock of the success the world enjoyed in the second half of the 20th century."</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p> “Strengthening these values—values that served our community of nations so well for so long—is paramount to retaining the position of leadership that Western nations enjoy.”</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Mr. Biden also leveled sharp criticism at Mr. Putin, whom Mr. Trump has praised and said he would seek to cooperate with. Mr. Putin’s goal, Mr. Biden said, was <strong>“to return to a world where the strong impose its will through military might, corruption, and criminality, while weaker nations have to fall into line.”</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“With many countries in Europe slated to hold elections this year, we should expect further attempts by Russia to meddle in the democratic process,” Mr. Biden said. <em><strong>“It will occur again, I promise you, and again the purpose is clear: to collapse the liberal international order.”</strong></em></p> </blockquote> <p>So - bottom line - according to the vice-president of the only US president to have been at war every day of their 8-year-term, the American people have 'unwittingly' voted a man into office who puts the entire world order at risk of collapse.</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="815" height="494" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Biden family Corruption Davos Government Joe Biden Joe Biden Mid-Atlantic Political positions of Joe Biden Politics Switzerland United States Vladimir Putin Wall Street Journal World Economic Forum Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:42:50 +0000 Tyler Durden 585731 at Playing The Trump Effect On FX Markets <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Trump will soon assume his elected office, and potentially change FX markets forever. Well, it's already happened. But what we've seen happen now, has been mostly 'talk' - whereas in 4 days, it will be 'reality.' First let's look at the best example in FX of the Trump Effect, USD/JPY traded as (<a href="" style="color: #024999 !important;">FXY</a>), Guggenheim CurrencyShares Japanese:</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;"><em>(click to enlarge)</em><a href="" style="color: #024999 !important;" rel="lightbox"><img src="" hspace="6" vspace="6" style="max-width: 670px;" /></a></p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">This long slide was a no-brainer trade of a lifetime. A blind bat with no wings could have flown through this tunnel. Once it was clear that Trump was going to implement a pro-USD policy one way or another (after the election) the USD strengthened against all pairs but most notably against the Japanese Yen . Note that, this chart represents the JPY going down, not up, as you would see in a USD/JPY chart which is quoted in the reverse.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Stock traders can trade FX in their stock accounts through ETFs. The downside, is that you don't get leverage. The huge upside though - huge options! There are many deep out of the money options to play such an event. So what will happen to Guggenheim CurrencyShares Japanese now? Probably, a short reversal maybe back to 87 Max, and then a continued slide down to historic levels. That's because FX markets haven't priced in 'The Trump Effect' completely yet.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Take a look at any of Trump's policies which can impact FX, let's look at the potential scenario where Trump labels China a Currency Manipulator - for which they certainly are. But here's the catch - EVERY fiat currency manipulates their currency via central bank policy. Here's where the mainstream media is wrong.&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank" style="color: #024999 !important;" rel="nofollow">Fred Imbert of CNBC claims that Trump is wrong because China has allowed the Yuan to float against major currency pairs.</a>&nbsp;This is true. But China imposes capital controls, which has given rise to a massive black market not only FX but for cash transfers too. The Yuan is highly controlled by the PBOC, even if that means selling Yuan to support FX operations in foreign markets.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">It's clear where Fred is getting his misinformation from:</p> <blockquote class="quote" style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;"><p><em>"The notion of labeling</em>&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank" style="color: #024999 !important;" rel="nofollow"><em>China</em></a>&nbsp;<em>a currency manipulator in this day and age is just silly," said Edward Alden, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. "If Trump had said that China was a currency manipulator in 2006, I would have said, 'hoorah,' but in 2016, it's a laughable mistake. I wonder who is advising Trump on this."</em></p> </blockquote> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">So here we go. The CFR represents the 'globalists' that are behind the push to keep the global status quo, as is. They're in China, and making good profits from the fact that China manipulates their currency. The best example being Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (<a href="" style="color: #024999 !important;">WMT</a>) that directly benefits from the Chinese manipulation. Simply put, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. profits huge because their supply is in China and their customer base is mostly in the United States in US Dollars. Not everything sold at Wal Mart comes from China, but almost nothing sold at Wal Mart is manufactured in the United States, with the huge exception of Wal Mart brand products "Equate" which are manufactured in Bentonville, AR (but, they are really 'assembled there - they take huge advantages of their USD buyer base in foreign countries). Anyway, if the Yuan rapidly appreciated, Wal Mart would have a serious problem on their hands. It's a question of good for consumers, bad for billionaires. Has Wal Mart greatly helped the economy? Many detractors say not, such as Noam Chomsky, who say that in the last 30 years corporate America has relied on financial manipulations, more than producing value. Wal Mart is a perfect example, as well as being a huge benefactor of a cheap Yuan.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Practically, a company as successful as Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. will adapt, it isn't as if this is going to make Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. crumble - far from it. They'll manufacture in Arkansas, there will be millions of illegals desperate for less than minimum wage factory jobs after Trump builds the wall. Let's not forget that foreign companies such as Hyundai, Kia, and many others - manufacture their products in places like Alabama. BMW has a massive plant in South Carolina, in Spartanburg. So this trade situation is not a one way deal, nor is it as simple as fixing the Chinese Currency Manipulation problem. The point is that there are many factors at play here, corporate and political power, central bank policy, and of course real trade as seen in the Baltic dry index. And what Trump has accomplished, for better or worse, he's made all this depend on his latest Tweet.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Tomorrow, Trump can make a Tweet that can cause the CurrencyShares British Pound Sterling ETF (<a href="" style="color: #024999 !important;">FXB</a>) to crash or skyrocket, based on the markets interpretation of it. That's more powerful than his new job in the Oval Office. Such power maybe never existed before, because it's always been reserved to big billionaire hedge fund traders, and it's always been limited. Just because Kyle Bass makes a statement, it doesn't move markets.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">So whether you're knowledgeable about FX or not, you should be, because it can impact the stock market in ways that has never seen before. Previous presidents have been globalists, which tend to want a stable, non-existant FX market - which resembles a one world currency. Trump's policies are the opposite. By imposing sanctions on China, taxing imports from Mexico, and other pro-America policies, Trump is putting a force in the market that never existed before.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Bernanke had his 'Bernanke Put' - Trump has created something that we can only call the "Trump Call" because he's betting long on America- whatever the consequences will be on the markets. What that means? It means that this plan wasn't thought out too well. There can be collateral damage, there can be knee-jerk reactions, portfolio rebalancing, and a number of financial ramifications that can rock FX markets. It can potentially make Brexit look like a walk in the park.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">One good thing for stock investors generally, it will make companies more evolved, for example half of listed issues do not hedge FX, but the other half do. Corporations who are at the tail end of the "Trump Call" (in 2016, 2015 it was called "Currency Headwinds") will suffer greatly. Those ahead of the curve, will profit immensely. It can lead to a golden area of finance on Wall St. - but there certainly will be a huge number of firms that won't evolve, won't hedge the FX risk, and ultimately, will be bankrupt or bought out.</p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">Companies like&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank" style="color: #024999 !important;" rel="nofollow">Fortress Capital offer signals for FX based on FX specific algorithms, that can easily be traded as ETFs in your stock account</a>.&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank" style="color: #024999 !important;" rel="nofollow">There are many FX education providers that offer ways to learn this important market, and how to include it in your portfolio either directly (trading FX ETFs) or indirectly (assessing the FX impact on your favorite stocks).</a></p> <p style="font-family: Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 18px;">The "Trump Call" is not only pro-America it's pro-Wall St. and a great opportunity to make money, but you have to be in it to win it.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-blog"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_blog" width="2600" height="2155" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Baltic Dry British Pound Business Business China Corporate America Council on Foreign Relations Currency intervention Currency pair Donald Trump Economy Foreign exchange market Kyle Bass Kyle Bass Mexico People's Bank of China Political positions of Donald Trump Renminbi South Carolina Walmart Yen Yuan Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:41:29 +0000 globalintelhub 585730 at Border Tax "Back On The Table" After Trump Walks Back "Provocative" Statement <p>Just a day after Trump's WSJ comments on the dollar being overvalued, and criticism on the proposed Border-Tax Adjustment sent the dollar into a tailspin and hit global risk level, Trump appears to have walked back his statements in an interview granted to Axios in which he "walked back some of the more provocative statements he had made only days before." As Axios notes, "a top adviser told us the sober tone reflects a bumpy few days inside Trump Tower — and the realization that he's days away from truly running the nation."</p> <p>Here are the highlights from the <a href="">Axios interview conducted on Tuesday</a>:</p> <ul> <li>Trump said health care is his most urgent domestic topic, telling us he spoke with President Obama again on Monday about the topic. He back-tracked a bit from his promise of insurance for everybody, saying he wanted to find a mechanism — Medicaid block grants, perhaps — to help the poorest get insurance. "You know there are many people talking about many forms of health care where people with no money aren't covered. We can't have that," he said.</li> <li>On Friday, he told The Wall Street Journal that border-adjustment, a vital part of the House Republicans' corporate tax-reform plan, was "too complicated." <strong>Now, it's suddenly back on the table. "It's certainly something that's going to be discussed," he said. "I would say, over the next month-and-a-half, two months, we'll be having more concrete discussions. Right now, we're really focused on health care more than anything else."</strong></li> <li>Trump earlier this week unsettled allies overseas by calling NATO obsolete and seeming to put Germany's Angela Merkel and Russia's Vladimir Putin on par as possible US allies. Trump told us ALL WORLD LEADERS are on par, with a fresh chance to prove themselves. "So, I give everybody an even start; that right now, as far as I'm concerned, everybody's got an even start," he said.</li> <li>Trump's advisers tell us privately that many parts of the operation remain messy — in large part, they say, because New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie left them with virtually no preparation for a transition. Advisers told us horror stories of struggles to fill key roles — including getting handed files of candidates, most of whom were Democrats. This is only adding to the confusion and slowed policy-making discussions.</li> </ul> <p>Trump also opined on recent intelligence briefings:&nbsp; "I've had a lot of briefings that are very … I don't want to say 'scary,' because I'll solve the problems," he said. "But … we have some big enemies out there in this country and we have some very big enemies — very big and, in some cases, strong enemies."</p> <p>He offered a reminder many critics hope he never forgets: "You also realize that you've got to get it right because a mistake would be very, very costly in so many different ways."</p> <p>Trump also told Axios that <strong>he likes his briefings short, ideally one-page if it's in writing. "I like bullets or I like as little as possible. I don't need, you know, 200-page reports on something that can be handled on a page. That I can tell you.</strong>"</p> <p>Eventually Trump reverted to his familiar self:</p> <ul> <li>In the opening moment, asked why he hasn't been able to deliver on his promise to heal divisions in the U.S., Trump reiterated his promise "to be a president for all Americans," only to launch, unprovoked, into his fourth-consecutive day of attacks on Rep. John Lewis, the civil-rights icon. Think about that for a minute: He's less than 72 hours from taking office and he was still stewing about a member of the Democratic minority in the House.</li> <li>Trump told us his confrontational style is misunderstood. "You know, I'm not really a divisive figure," he said, before pinning the blame for bad press and bad blood almost entirely on the media: "In the history of politics, there's nobody that has been treated worse by the press than I have."</li> <li>Asked to name a decision he got wrong or a regret from the campaign, he didn't.</li> </ul> <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="1017" height="553" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Business Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Donald Trump presidential campaign North Atlantic Treaty Organization Political positions of Donald Trump Politics Politics of the United States President Obama The Apprentice Vladimir Putin Wall Street Journal WWE Hall of Fame Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:31:49 +0000 Tyler Durden 585727 at US Manufacturing Output Stagnates For 14th Straight Month (Despite Surging Surveys) <p>US Manufacturing output stagnated for the 14th month in a row in December with a <strong>mere 0.2% rise year-over-year (amid downward revisions), notably less than the expected 0.4% rise</strong>. While industrial production rose year-over-year for the first time since August 2015 (thanks to a surge in vehicle production). Natural gas utility output also soared 12.0% MoM providing some impetus to the headline print's 0.8% MoM gain.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="316" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>It appears the soft survey data is once again entirely decoupled from the hard reality data...</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="314" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And just in case that's too hard to read...</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="315" /></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="967" height="507" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Business Forms of government Natural Gas Political history Reality Republics United States World Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:28:08 +0000 Tyler Durden 585726 at Snowden's Lawyer Appeals To Trump After Russia Extends His Asylum For Three Years <p>Following an announcement that Edward Snowden's Russian asylum status was extended for another three years allowing him to stay in the country until 2020, his lawyer said that the former NSA is legally eligible to obtain Russian citizenship.</p> <p><img src="" width="500" height="334" /></p> <p>Russian authorities said earlier on Wednesday they had extended a residency permit for Snowden, who was given asylum in Russia after leaking classified information about U.S. spy operations. That permit is now valid until 2020, the lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, was quoted as saying by <a href="">Russia's RIA news agency</a>.</p> <p>"In effect, he now has all grounds to receive citizenship in the future, over the course of a certain period, since under the law we have a period of residence on Russia soil of not less than 5 years (to receive Russian citizenship),"&nbsp; Snowden’s lawyer Anatoly Kucherena told RIA Novosti news agency. "This means that if he decides [to apply for citizenship] in the near future, it will be legally possible. He has now lived in Russia for almost four years, has not violated any laws, and there are no [legal] claims against him – this is one of the reasons his residence permit was extended,” Kucherena explained.</p> <p>In a statement to Interfax <a href="">cited by RT</a>, Kucherena expressed hope that the incoming US administration headed by Donald Trump will change Washington’s attitude towards the former whistleblower.</p> <p><strong>“I hope that the administration of President-elect Donald Trump will be more sensitive and objective in its consideration of the Snowden issue and will change the attitude the official authorities [expressed] towards it,” </strong>Kucherena stated on Wednesday, noting that in order “to do this, they need only to work through Snowden’s story and realize that he did not commit any crime.”</p> <p>The news of Russia extending Snowden’s residence permit was first announced on Tuesday, when Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova confirmed in a Facebook post that his asylum renewal had been secured. </p> <p>Her post came in response to an op-ed by former CIA Director Michael Morell published Sunday in the The Cipher Brief, in which he suggested Edward Snowden be presented as the “perfect inauguration gift” from Vladimir Putin to Donald Trump. </p> <p>Zakharova responded sharply, saying that Russia does not betray its principles and does not hand out “gifts,” especially when these “gifts” may face prosecution. </p> <p>“You failed to understand Russia, Michael Morell,” Zakharova stated, implying that Russia does not surrender those who might be unfairly prosecuted in another country.</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="700" height="468" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Anatoly Kucherena Central Intelligence Agency Citizenship Donald Trump Edward Snowden Film Mass media Novosti REN TV RIA Novosti RIA Novosti RT Russian Foreign Ministry Snowden SPY Television US Administration Vladimir Putin Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:11:51 +0000 Tyler Durden 585725 at Highest Rent Inflation Since 2007 Sends Core CPI Above Fed's Target For 14th Consecutive Month <p>US headline inflation rose for a 5th consecutive month, and has not seen a negative print since February, following today's report that CPI in December rose 0.3%, and up 2.1% from a year ago, the highest since June 2014. Both measures came in line with expectations as energy and gas costs rise and rents and medical costs continued to rise.</p> <p><img src="" width="500" height="261" /></p> <p>Energy costs increased 1.5% from a month earlier, as gasoline rose 3%. Food prices were unchanged for a sixth month, however thiw as more than offset by shelter expenses which climbed 0.3%, reflecting a jump in rental costs.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="322" /></a></p> <p><strong>As shown below, rent inflation rose 4.0% in December, the highest annual increase since December 2007, pushing shelter inflation up 3.6% Y/Y. </strong></p> <p><img src="" width="500" height="297" /></p> <p>The core CPI measure increased 2.2 percent from December 2015, after rising 2.1 percent in the prior 12-month period.&nbsp; Core inflation has now printed above the Fed's target rate of 2.0% for 14 consecutive months. </p> <p><img src="" width="500" height="265" /></p> <p>Continued rising prices should further boost inflation and strengthening the case for the Fed to keep raising interest rates this year, although the Fed’s preferred gauge of inflation, the personal consumption expenditures price measure, which puts a lower emphasis on rents, rose only 1.4% in November from a year earlier; it hasn’t matched the central bank’s 2 percent goal since April</p> <p>“Consumer prices have trekked higher over the past few months on the back of higher energy prices,” Sam Bullard, senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities LLC in Charlotte, North Carolina, said in a note before the report. The Fed is “well-positioned for multiple rate hikes in 2017” with inflation near target and unemployment below 5 percent, he wrote.</p> <p>Some more details on core prices:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.2 percent in December. The shelter index rose 0.3 percent in December, the same increase as in November, with the indexes for rent and owners' equivalent rent both repeating their November increases of 0.3 percent. The index for motor vehicle insurance rose 0.8 percent in December following a 1.0 percent rise the prior month. The medical care index, which was unchanged in October and November, rose 0.2 percent in December. The hospital services index rose 0.3 percent, and the index for prescription drugs increased 0.2 percent. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The education index also increased in December, rising 0.5 percent. The index for airline fares increased 1.9 percent after declining in November. The index for used cars and trucks rose 0.5 percent, its largest increase since April 2015. The index for new vehicles increased slightly, rising 0.1 percent after falling 0.1 percent in November. Also increasing in December were the indexes for tobacco (0.4 percent), personal care (0.3 percent), household furnishings and operations (0.1 percent), and alcoholic beverages (0.1 percent). </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The recreation index was unchanged in December. The apparel index, which fell 0.5 percent in November, declined 0.7 percent in December. The communication index also fell in December, decreasing 0.1 percent. </p> </blockquote> <p>In short, prices continue to rise and will only accelerate should any of Trump's proposed fiscal measures be implemented.</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="946" height="561" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Business Consumer price index Core CPI Core inflation CPI Economy Great Recession in Europe Inflation Macroeconomics Personal Consumption Personal consumption expenditures price index Price indices Unemployment United States Consumer Price Index US Federal Reserve Wells Fargo Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:03:10 +0000 Tyler Durden 585724 at New ABC / WaPo Poll Uses "Oversamples" To Goal Seek Strong Obama Approval Rating <p>Just one day after the bitter mainstreamers at ABC/WaPo and CNN used their "oversamples" of Democrats to rig polls showing an unprecedented unfavorable rating of the incoming President-elect (see "<a href="">New ABC / WaPo Poll Shows Drop In Trump Favorability Courtesy Of Aggressive 'Oversamples'</a>"), those <strong>same outlets have used those same methodologies to engineer stellar approval ratings for Obama...shocking.&nbsp; </strong></p> <p>Just like yesterday's polls, both <a href="">ABC / Wapo</a> and <a href="">CNN</a> used an <strong>aggressive, 8-point "oversample" of Democrats to lavish praise on their chose party and candidate.&nbsp; </strong></p> <p>Apparently, <strong>ABC / WaPo believes that only 23% of registered voters are Republican</strong>...</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><img src="" alt="Wapo" width="550" height="202" /></p> </blockquote> <p>...while <strong>CNN stretched to 24% Republicans but still maintained their 8-point Democrat oversample</strong> by just adding more dems to the pool.&nbsp; </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>A total of 1,000 adults were interviewed by telephone nationwide by live interviewers calling both landline and cell phones. Among the entire sample, <strong>32% described themselves as Democrats, 24% described themselves as Republicans, and 44% described themselves as independents</strong> or members of another party</p> </blockquote> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And, of course, <strong>when you load up a poll with an "oversampling" of Democrats, you predictably get high approval ratings for Democratic candidates</strong>...surprise, surprise.&nbsp; Here are the ABC / WaPo results...</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" alt="Obama Poll" width="600" height="420" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>...and <strong>CNN</strong>.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" alt="Obama Poll" width="600" height="212" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, ABC / WaPo provided the following convenient chart which perfectly illustrates why "oversamples" are so important.&nbsp; By our math, using the <strong>actual split of registered voters based on actual data</strong> (i.e. 33% Dem, 29% Rep and 38% Independent/Other) and a normalized approval rating among Independents <strong>would result in an Obama approval rating of ~52%.&nbsp; </strong>But, with a 90% approval rating among his own party and a <strong>suspicious surge in approval among "Independents" (which is more likely attributable to samples more Independents in Democrat-leaning precincts)</strong>, it's very easy to see how even just small "oversamples" can result in massive swings in the overall results. &nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" alt="Obama Approval" width="600" height="465" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, despite having one of the highest approval ratings of any exiting President in modern history, ABC / WaPo found that, even with their oversamples, <strong>63% of Americans still see the country as being on the wrong track</strong>...figure that one out.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" alt="Obama Poll" width="600" height="487" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In any event, this tweet still sums up the continued mainstream media polling farce the best:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">The same people who did the phony election polls, and were so wrong, are now doing approval rating polls. They are rigged just like before.</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="">January 17, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="696" height="427" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Business cell phones Democratic Party Donald Trump Politics Politics of the United States ratings United States United States presidential approval rating Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:47:43 +0000 Tyler Durden 585723 at What Wage Inflation? Real Average Weekly Earnings Growth Plunges To Weakest In 30 Months <p>Despite all the excitement and media hype that wage growth is finally upon us and the green shoots of escape velocity recovery are here, thanks to Obama and Yellen, the facts are different. <strong>Real average weekly earnings rose just 0.2% year-over-year in December - the weakest growth since June 2014</strong> <em>(and November's gains were revised lower).</em></p> <p>When Obama took office, real average weekly earnings was growing at around 2.5% YoY. As he leaves office it is growing at just 0.2% YoY.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="317" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Does that look like a healthy economic trajectory to hand over to President Trump?</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="963" height="508" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Average weekly earnings Barack Obama Business Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Economy Green Shoots Office for National Statistics Politics of the United States Price indices recovery The Apprentice United States WWE Hall of Fame Yoy Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:36:19 +0000 Tyler Durden 585722 at Man Sets Himself On Fire Outside Trump D.C. Hotel In Protest Of Inauguration <p>A protester set himself on fire outside Trump International Hotel in Washington DC on Tuesday night around 9:30pm in what appears to be a failed attempt at self-immolation, NBC4DC reported. The unidentified man called Trump a "dictator" and said the act was in protest of Trump's upcoming inauguration. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en"><a href="">#BREAKING</a>: Man lights fire near <a href="">#TrumpInternationalHotel</a>. Employees call police. Man told me he's from CA &amp; protesting <a href="">#TrumpInauguration</a> <a href=""></a></p> <p>— Shomari Stone (@shomaristone) <a href="">January 18, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">NEW VIDEO <a href="">#BREAKING</a>:<br />Man says Trump is a dictator. He tried to light himself on fire at <a href="">#TrumpInternationalHotel</a> for <a href="">#TrumpInauguration</a> <a href=""></a></p> <p>— Shomari Stone (@shomaristone) <a href="">January 18, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>'(I'm protesting) the fact that we've elected somebody who is completely incapable of respecting the constitution of the United States.'&nbsp; </p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="285" /></a></p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="447" /></a></p> <p>Witnesses described how he yelled 'Trump' several times as 'flames ran up his back' before lying down in the street. He has suffered non-life-threatening burns and was taken to hospital shortly after the incident at around 9.30pm.&nbsp; </p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="283" /></a></p> <p>It is unclear if the man has been arrested. According to the Daily Mail, the man's wounds were not serious. A<br /> by-passer said it was not initially clear what the man was protesting<br /> when he set fire to items of clothing in the street outside the hotel. </p> <p>'He set himself on fire and as flames ran up his back he yelled Trump several times then lay down in the street. (He) then walked over to the police/security,' Michael Shoag, who arrived at the hotel after the man set himself on fire, said. </p> <p>While the man appeared to have suffered burns to his back, he was able to walk.&nbsp; </p> <p>Anti-Trump protesters have been flocking to Washington DC this week ahead of Friday's inauguration.&nbsp; They also inundated Ivanka Trump's Manhattan home on Tuesday, carrying moving boxes plastered with protest slogans to mock the businesswoman's move to Washington. </p> <p>New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Tuesday he would also join demonstrators at a protest outside the family's Manhattan hotel on the eve of the inauguration. 'I'm rallying at Trump Int’l Hotel at 6PM on Jan. 19 because our next president needs to hear from all NYers before he takes office. Join us,' the mayor tweeted.&nbsp; </p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="634" height="361" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Business Ivanka Trump Old Post Office Pavilion Protests against Donald Trump Twitter Twitter United States Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:25:36 +0000 Tyler Durden 585721 at Trump Was Right: Top NATO General Concedes Alliance Is "Obsolete" <p>The media remains focused on the apparently widening gap between the president-elect and his Defense Secretary-designate James Mattis over NATO after Trump <strong>reconfirmed charges from his campaign that NATO is &quot;obsolete,&quot;</strong> in a joint interview Sunday with The London Times and Germany&#39;s Bild publication, which are at odds with retired<strong> Marine Gen. Mattis, who said, &quot;If we didn&#39;t have NATO today, we&#39;d need to create it. NATO is vital to our interests,&quot; </strong>during his Senate confirmation hearing last week.</p> <p>In his remarks to The London Times and Bild, Trump said of NATO: <em><strong>&quot;It&#39;s obsolete, first because it was designed many, many years ago.&quot; He renewed his charges that most members of the 28-nation alliance are not living up to their responsibilities under the treaty.</strong></em></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The U.S. provides about 70 percent of the funding for NATO while other nations &quot;aren&#39;t paying their fair share, so we&#39;re supposed to protect countries,&quot; Trump said. <strong><em>&quot;There&#39;s five countries that are paying what they&#39;re supposed to -- five. It&#39;s not much.&quot;</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <p><a href=""><img height="359" src="" width="529" /></a></p> <p>And it appears some in NATO agree, <a href="">as AP reports,</a> <strong>a top NATO general is conceding that parts of the military alliance need to be brought up to date following U.S. President-elect Donald Trump&#39;s claim that NATO is &quot;obsolete.&quot;</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Reacting to Trump&#39;s criticism in an interview this week, NATO&#39;s Supreme Allied Commander Transformation General Denis Mercier said Tuesday, <strong>&quot;We see that there is a need for adaptation.&quot;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img height="381" src="" width="585" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Mercier acknowledged that NATO has &quot;some structures that are obsolete.&quot;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>He says the military alliance probably has <strong>focused too much on deploying troops abroad</strong>, so-called expeditionary warfare, particularly its operation in Afghanistan.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Mercier says the alliance wants to<strong> revamp its approach to counter-terrorism,</strong> in part by helping countries under threat to develop long-term plans to fight extremists.</p> </blockquote> <p>Germany was one of a number of European nations stunned by Trump&#39;s remarks.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>After meetings at NATO headquarters in Brussels on Monday, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said Trump&#39;s criticism of NATO is &quot;in contradiction&quot; of Mattis&#39; vision of a strengthened alliance and U.S. support of NATO&#39;s Article 5, which considers an attack on any member as an attack against all.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&quot;Obviously, the comments from President-elect Trump that he views NATO as obsolete were viewed with anxiety,&quot; Steinmeier said.</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="585" height="381" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Afghanistan American people of German descent Donald Trump Donald Trump Frank-Walter Steinmeier Germany International relations Military NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization Political positions of Donald Trump Politics Senate The Apprentice War WWE Hall of Fame Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:16:30 +0000 Tyler Durden 585720 at