en Trump Adviser Conway Gets Secret Service Protection After Death Threats <p>Kellyanne Conway - arguably Trump's most recognizable aide - has been <strong>assigned Secret Service protection after receiving threats against her life</strong>, presumably from tolerant anti-Trump protesters.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-video"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">.<a href="">@KellyannePolls</a> talks to <a href="">@HardballChris</a> about receiving death threats and the need to end incendiary rhetoric <a href=""></a></p> <p>— Hardball (@hardball) <a href="">December 9, 2016</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>Conway had previously blasted the president-elect's critics -- namely Hillary Clinton supporters -- for<strong> fueling a barrage of death threats against her</strong>...</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>"Anytime I respond, anytime I defend myself against these ... allegations that are now leading to death threats ... I'm seen as ungracious,"</strong> Conway said during an interview Thursday on MSNBC with Chris Matthews, referring, in part, to claims that the Trump campaign gave a platform to white nationalists.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Why are we sore winners? I'm not a sore winner. I'm a winner. My guy is a winner. He's the next president of the United States."</p> </blockquote> <p><a href=""><em>As The New York Post reports, </em></a>it is unclear what threats Conway, Trump’s<br /> final campaign manager, was facing, but during a recent interview with Sean Hannity on the Fox News Network, Conway said that <strong>multiple packages containing "white substances" have been delivered to her home causing panic.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>“We have packages delivered to my house with white substances. That is a shame,”</strong> she told the sympathetic Fox host. “Because of what the press is doing now to me, I have Secret Service protection.”</p> </blockquote> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="607" height="322" /></a></p> <p>But while her Secret Service<br /> detail is unusual, it is not without precedence.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>Barack Obama’s closest adviser, Valerie Jarrett, also was protected by the agency.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Asked about the relationship between Trump’s top advisers — herself, Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner and Reince Priebus, Conway said it was good.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>“We’re a cohesive unit,” </strong>she told<a href=""> The Washington Post.</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“The senior team exhibits many of the characteristics President Trump has always valued: cohesion, collaboration, high energy and high impact,” she added.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>According to the report, Conway will be focused on health care and issues related to veterans — and is expecting to spend less time on TV.</p> </blockquote> <p>Given the <strong>lack of consequence to Madonna's "bomb the White House"<br /> remarks</strong>, it is perhaps not entirely surprising that death threats are<br /> tossed about.</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="607" height="322" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Alt-right American people of German descent Business Conway Donald Trump Donald Trump presidential campaign Fox News Kellyanne Conway Mike Pence MSNBC New York Post Politics Politics of the United States Pundettes Reince Priebus Secret Service United States White House White House Tue, 24 Jan 2017 20:50:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 586409 at Transcanada Responds To Trump Executive Order: Says Keystone XL Will Add $3 Billion To US GDP <p>In a response filed moments ago by TransCanada, the company said it is currently preparing a follow up application, and will take up President Donald Trump’s invitation to again seek permit for the Keysteon XL pipeline. It further adds that Keystone XL will add more than $3 billion to U.S. GDP and create “thousands” of construction jobs.</p> <p><em>Full statement below:</em></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>We appreciate the President of the United States inviting us to re-apply for KXL. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>We are currently preparing the application and intend to do so. KXL creates thousands of well-paying construction jobs and would generate tens of millions of dollars in annual property taxes to counties along the route as well as more than $3 billion to the U.S. GDP</strong>. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>With best-in-class technology and construction techniques that protect waterways and other sensitive environmental resources, KXL represents the safest, most environmentally sound way to connect the American economy to an abundant energy resource.</p> </blockquote> <p>Ironically, as the back and forth was taking place, news emerged that a pipeline in the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan leaked 200,000 liters (52,834 gallons) of oil in an aboriginal community, the provincial government said on Monday according to <a href="">Reuters</a>. The government was notified late in the afternoon on Friday, and 170,000 liters have since been recovered, said Doug McKnight, assistant deputy minister in the Ministry of the Economy, which regulates pipelines in Saskatchewan. </p> <p>The spill came seven months after another major incident in Saskatchewan, in which a Husky Energy Inc pipeline leaked 225,000 liters into a major river and cut off the drinking water supply for two cities. It was not immediately clear how the current incident happened or which company owns the underground pipeline that leaked the oil. </p> <p>McKnight said Tundra Energy Marketing Inc, which has a line adjacent to the spill, is leading cleanup efforts. "There are a number of pipes in the area," he told reporters in Regina. "Until we excavate it, we won't know with 100-percent certainty which pipe."</p> <p>Tundra, a privately held unit of Canadian grain trading and energy conglomerate James Richardson and Sons Ltd, released a statement saying it is cooperating with all levels of government and will ensure "the affected land is restored appropriately." </p> <p>The incident happened in the lands of the Ocean Man First Nation 140 km (87 miles) southeast of the provincial capital of Regina, according to the province.</p> <p>It is still unclear how environmental groups will react to today's executive orders by 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="750" height="361" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Energy Environment Infrastructure Keystone Pipeline KXL Ministry of the Economy Petroleum industry provincial government Reuters Saskatchewan TransCanada Corporation Tue, 24 Jan 2017 20:48:22 +0000 Tyler Durden 586410 at Near Broke Company Tells Investors To Stop Buying Its Soaring Stock <p>An obscure Danish penny stock company called Victoria Properties has a lot of investors, and its own management team, dumbfounded after it <strong>surged nearly 1,000% in just a matter of days and for no apparent reason whatsoever</strong>.&nbsp; Per <a href="">Bloomberg</a>, the company invests in residential and retail real estate in Germany but a quick review of financials reveals minimal revenue, consistent cash flow burns for several years running, minimal assets and very little remaining cash.</p> <p>The sudden surge in the company's stock price even forced management to issue a statement confirming that Victoria's equity value is "<strong>still equal to about zero kroner"</strong>...which we assume is just a rough estimate.<strong><br /></strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“The management in Victoria Properties wants to make clear that there has been no change in Victoria Properties’ economic conditions and that no plans have been disclosed regarding the company’s future strategy,” Chief Executive Officer Rasmus Bundgaard said in the stock-exchange announcement.<strong> “The company’s equity is therefore still equal to about zero kroner.”</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><a href=""><img src="" alt="Victoria Properties" width="600" height="404" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>According to Bloomberg, no one could explain the sudden surge in Victoria's equity though most of the trading came from retail brokerage accounts held at NordNet AB.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Traders and analysts called by Bloomberg were unable to explain the company’s share move on Monday. <strong>Most of the trading was done by a brokerage that mainly serves retail clients, called NordNet AB. Its transactions accounted for about half of total trades.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Victoria’s shares had fallen for six straight calendar years before 2017</strong>, so even after January’s stunning gains, the company is still worth about 98 percent less than at its 2006 peak, just before Denmark’s property bubble burst.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The last time the company issued stock-exchange announcements was on Dec. 29, when majority owner sold its entire 64.95 percent stake to three different companies, including one controlled by Victoria’s CEO.</p> </blockquote> <p>Nefarious plot or trading algos gone wild?</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="1258" height="847" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bloomberg L.P. Business Economy Finance Germany Money Real estate Stock Tue, 24 Jan 2017 20:30:43 +0000 Tyler Durden 586380 at Goldman Warns Of Oil Price Shock As Border Tax Could Lead To Surge In US Oil Production <p>While <a href="">much has been said </a>about the impact on the dollar from the proposed Border Tax Adjustment, which may or may not be implemented depending on what Trump says/tweets on any given day (and as a reminder, there has already been a loud outcry against it by powerful lobby groups, including the Kochs, as a result of the expected decimation of US retailers should BTA be implemented) little has been said about how it could impact US commodity production in general, and oil in particular. </p> <p>This morning, in a note titled "Destination-based taxation and the oil market", Goldman's Damien Courvalin focused on this issue and found that the price gain from shift to destination-based border adjusted corporate tax would prompt US drillers to <strong>“</strong>sharply increase activity<strong>" </strong>as a result of lower US corporate tax rates, which would aggressively incentivize shale drilling, resulting in a global oil price shock, sending domestic prices spiking, as global prices slide. </p> <p>The border tax would have an inflationary impact on U.S. service costs and reduce U.S. dollar costs of foreign producers. A lower U.S. corporate tax rate “could force a deflationary tax policy response” elsewhere further reducing the marginal cost of oil. In short, "<strong>US oil prices would appreciate immediately and sharply vs. global oil prices</strong>"</p> <p>Some observations:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>If domestic oil prices remained at the same level as imported crude oil prices upon implementation of the BTA,&nbsp; US refiners would have an incentive to consume only domestically produced crude instead of importing crude as only the cost of domestic crude would be deducted for tax purposes, and (2) US producers would have an incentive only to export crude rather than to sell to domestic refiners as there&nbsp; would be no taxes on exports. <strong>This would lead to a sharp appreciation of the US domestic oil price relative to the global price oil. </strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="223" /></a> </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Because US oil demand of 19.6 mb/d currently vastly exceeds domestic crude production of 13.5 mb/d, the US market requires imports of crude. As a result, refiners would bid domestic crude up until domestic prices rise enough to leave them indifferent about importing crude for their incremental barrels. Put another way, pricing power would be in the hands of producers upon introduction of this policy and they could charge US refiners up until these prefer to import foreign crude instead. Financial markets would anticipate this new equilibrium, with domestic oil prices reacting immediately to offset the impact of the border adjustment and leave refiners with the same pre-policy incentives to consume domestic or imported crude oil. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="390" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The magnitude of this relative price move would be determined by the new US corporate tax rate and, at 20% (the rate currently being proposed by the Republican tax BluePrint), it would imply US prices trading at a 25% premium over global oil prices.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="271" /></a></p> </blockquote> <p>Goldman warns that rising U.S. production would create a “renewed large oil surplus into 2018” and that there would be an “immediate decline in global oil prices” as other producers offset ramp-up in U.S. output. OPEC would probably raise production, supplies would grow and forward curve would move into “steep contango."</p> <p>As an example, assuming a 15% dollar gain and 30% pass through to global production costs, <strong>Brent would decline to $50/bbl in 2019 from ~$57/bbl now. </strong></p> <p>In pricing terms, the higher U.S. crude price would pass through to consumers with modest impact on U.S. fuel demand growth. With $5/bbl rise in U.S. crude, demand to rise 70k b/d in 2018, 55k b/d below present forecast. Meanwhile, refiners would be left with excess returns as a result of the border tax. </p> <p>In the longer term, Goldman predicts that a “new market equilibrium would arise” with U.S. prices returning to pre-policy level. Border tax would reduce imports and boost exports “in theory” causing dollar to appreciate 25% to reverse initial distortion; the USD appreciation has been duly noted. However, the medium-term outcome would likely be <strong>“modestly higher U.S. oil prices and sustainably lower global oil prices, with a shift down by U.S. producers and refiners on the global cost curve.” </strong></p> <p>* * * </p> <p>Here is the big picture from Goldman:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>A switch to Border-Adjusted Tax (BTA) would immediately lead to a 25% appreciation of US crude and product prices vs. global prices (at a 20% corporate tax rate). This appreciation would provide excess returns to domestic producers and incentivize them to sharply increase activity. This improvement in shale’s competitiveness would be exacerbated by the introduction of a lower US corporate tax rate funded by the BTA. While the BTA’s inflationary impact on US service costs and the deflationary impact of USD appreciation on foreign costs should theoretically offset these shifts and push global prices down by 20%, the contracted nature of oil services implies that the BTA will initially leave US producers moving down on the global cost curve and capturing higher returns. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This significant incentive to ramp up US production in a market that is only starting to rebalance would create a renewed large oil surplus in 2018, likely exacerbated by a reversal of the OPEC cuts. This prospect should lead to an immediate sharp decline in global oil prices to try to offset such a potential US ramp-up, either by creating an offsetting foreign production decline or by normalizing US excess returns. Over the longer term, <strong>the decline in the US corporate tax rate and shale’s significant growth potential at higher returns could force a deflationary tax policy response abroad, sustainably reducing oil’s marginal cost of production.</strong> </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Importantly, there would initially be no changes in US crude differentials and crude or product trade flows, with all US refiners benefiting from higher margins because of the lower tax rate. Differentiation between US refiners would only materialize if the supply response of US producers creates logistical constraints and wider domestic crude differentials.</p> </blockquote> <p>And the executive summary:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Among the meaningful potential changes to the US corporate tax code, the most controversial appears to be the House Republicans’ proposal for a shift to a destination-based border-adjusted corporate tax (BTA) alongside a reduction of the federal statutory corporate tax rate. The practical effect of switching to destination-based taxation would be that US firms would exclude export revenues but would no longer deduct import costs when calculating their tax base. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>There remains high uncertainty on whether this proposal will go ahead given the disruption that such an abrupt change in corporate tax policy likely entails. As a result, our economists assign only a 20% subjective probability to this policy being implemented , with the potential exemption of certain industries lowering the chances that it would impact the oil market further. Current WTI and Brent oil futures imply a 9% probability for a shift to BTA with no oil exemption. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Despite this perceived low probability, we believe that a switch to BTA would have significant impacts on the oil market:</p> <ol> <li>Because the US oil market is short domestic crude production relative to domestic demand, the impact of such a tax shift would be an immediate appreciation by 25% of US oil prices relative to global oil prices (at a new 20% corporate tax rate). This appreciation would initially leave US crude and product trade flows unchanged but would provide excess returns to domestic crude producers and would incentivize them to sharply increase activity. This improvement in shale’s competitiveness would be exacerbated by the introduction of a lower US corporate tax rate funded by the BTA.</li> <li>This significant incentive to ramp up US production in a market that is only starting to rebalance with the help of OPEC producers would create a renewed large oil surplus into 2018. This reversal of oil fundamentals and the gain in competitiveness of US producers would further likely lead low-cost producers to reverse their decision to cut production and instead return to growing output to maintain market share and long-term revenues.</li> <li>Such a prospect should therefore lead to an immediate decline in global oil prices to try to offset this ramp-up in US production, either by creating an offsetting foreign production decline or by normalizing US excess returns. Because the velocity of shale’s supply growth exceeds the ability for the rest of the world’s supply to decline, and because OPEC would likely resume production growth, it is likely that inventory would nonetheless resume rising in 2018, driving the oil forward curve back into a steep contango.</li> <li>Beyond this bearish impact on 2018 spot prices, the extent of the decline in deferred global oil prices needed to rebalance the oil market over the medium term will be a function of the respective shifts in the US and global costs curves, driven by a combination of the BTA’s inflationary impact on US service costs and the deflationary impact of USD appreciation on foreign production costs. Because of the contracted nature of oil services, these shifts in costs would pass through gradually and would initially leave US producers moving down on the oil cost curve. A decline in the US corporate tax rate could further force a deflationary tax policy response abroad, sustainably reducing the oil’s market marginal cost of production and long- term oil prices.</li> <li>Assuming a 15% USD appreciation upon implementation of the BTA and a 30% immediate pass through to global production costs, we believe that 2019 Brent prices could decline to $50/bbl, from $57/bbl currently. In the short term, the prospect of rising inventories and the reversal of the OPEC cuts could drive prices meaningfully lower, while, longer term, a greater pass through of the USD appreciation onto global costs and our 2020 Brent base case forecast of $53/bbl would imply global prices falling to $40/bbl. Over both horizons, the decline in global oil prices would help offset the outright appreciation in US prices with a likely greater fall in global oil prices than rally in US oil prices.</li> <li>With refining a low-margin industry, the appreciation in US crude oil prices would be almost entirely passed through to the US consumer, with only modest offsets from compressing marketing margins. This appreciation in domestic prices would therefore negatively impact US domestic demand, although the effect’s magnitude would be offset by lower global oil prices. All else constant, a $5/bbl increase in US oil prices would, for example, lead US demand to grow 70 kb/d in 2018, only 55 kb/d less than our current base case forecast of 125 kb/d. </li> <li>The impact of BTA on US refiners would be similar to that on US producers: the appreciation in US crude and petroleum product prices would be immediate and exceed the inflationary impact of the BTA, leaving them with excess returns (outright and vs. foreign refiners), especially if the corporate tax rate is reduced as well. Higher returns would translate into higher US refinery utilization and would push global refining margins lower, negatively impacting marginal refiners in Europe and Asia. There would initially be no change in US domestic crude differentials and crude or product trade flows, with all US refiners benefiting from higher margins . Differentiation in returns between US regional refiners would only materialize if the supply response of US producers once again creates logistical constraints and wider domestic crude differentials.</li> <li>Over the long run, a new oil market equilibrium would arise and, conceptually, it should be one in which US oil prices return to their pre-policy level. Border adjustment would reduce demand for imports and increase demand for exports, in theory causing the USD to appreciate by 25% to reverse the initial distortion of competitiveness and trade flows. Over the long run, the deflationary passthrough effect of this stronger USD on foreign service costs should lead to a decline in global prices of 20%. At such a new equilibrium, US prices would therefore revert to their pre-policy levels, although still up 25% vs. global oil prices.</li> <li>This new equilibrium is unlikely to be reached as the USD is unlikely to appreciate by 25% given currency intervention in many trading partners. Further, potential barriers to entry and termed service contracts would lead the US and global cost adjustments to be only gradual, leaving the evolving macro-economic landscape to create a new equilibrium beforehand. <strong>The medium-term outcome of the introduction of the BTA would therefore be one of modestly higher US oil prices and sustainably lower global oil prices, with a shift down by US producers and refiners on the global cost curves.</strong></li> </ol> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>These shifts in local vs. global prices and returns would hold for other commodity markets, such as metals, as well as markets where the US is a larger producer than consumer, like agriculture. It will also hold for the global gas market, depressing global LNG prices, although the less-fungible nature of natural gas and the current US logistical bottlenecks may initially lead to mostly regional shifts in US gas prices.</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="793" height="354" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> B+ Brent Crude Business Commodity markets Contango Crude Crude Oil Economy Market Share Natural Gas OPEC OPEC Organization of Petroleum-Exporting Countries Peak oil Petroleum Petroleum industry Petroleum politics Price of oil Pricing Western Canadian Select Tue, 24 Jan 2017 20:17:41 +0000 Tyler Durden 586408 at Fight Club Author Slams 'Modern Left': "I Coined 'Snowflake' And I Stand By It" <p>Now part of common parlance when referring to the overly-sensitive, easily-outraged, excessively-entitled Left, we read with particular enjoyment - for obvious reasons - that when <a href="">London's Evening Standard</a> asked Fight Club author Chuck Palahniuk about the popularisation of the term, he responded "It does come from Fight Club. There is a line, ‘You are not special. You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake.’”</p> <p><iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p><a href=""><br />For those who are inexplicably unfamiliar, </a>in Fight Club Tyler Durden leads a generation of emasculated men to rediscover their inner strength by beating the hell out of each other. Two decades later, Palahniuk sees the modern generation as delicate flowers more than ever. “There is a kind of new Victorianism,” he said. </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>“Every generation gets offended by different things but my friends who teach in high school tell me that their students are very easily offended.”</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Now snowflakes have blown across the Atlantic and entered into British parlance. Last week, Boris Johnson warned François Hollande not to administer “punishment beatings” in the Brexit negotiations. His old friend Michael Gove piled in, saying those offended were “deliberately obtuse snowflakes”. And the term has already been re-appropriated by its targets: at the Women’s March in London on </strong>Saturday were signs with slogans such as “Damn right we’re snowflakes: Winter is coming”.</p> <p>Chuck says this is a problem with the Left, not the Right.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p> <strong>“The modern Left is always reacting to things,” </strong>he opined.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>“Once they get their show on the road culturally they will stop being so offended.” </strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>He added self-effacingly: “That’s just my bulls**t opinion.”</p> </blockquote> <p>And now you know.</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="648" height="336" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Cacophony Society Chuck Palahniuk Durden Fiction Fight Club Fight Club Literature Mental illness in fiction Michael Gove Palahniuk Snowflake The Narrator Tyler Durden Tue, 24 Jan 2017 19:59:35 +0000 Tyler Durden 586407 at Why The Keystone Pipeline Will Actually RAISE Gas Prices In the U.S. <div class="content"> <p>Bloomberg <a href="" target="_blank" title="notes">notes</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Completion of the entire [Keystone] pipeline would&nbsp;<strong>raise prices at the pump in the Midwest and Rocky Mountains 10 to 20 cents a gallon</strong>, Verleger, the Colorado consultant, said in an e-mail message.The higher crude prices also would <strong>erase the discount enjoyed by cities including Chicago, Cheyenne and Denver</strong>, Verleger said.</p> </blockquote> <p>CNN Money <a href="" target="_blank" title="reports">reports</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>Gas prices might go up, not down</strong>: Right now, a lot of oil being produced in Canada and North Dakota has trouble reaching the refineries and terminals on the Gulf. Since that supply can&rsquo;t be sold abroad, it reduces the competition for it to Midwest refineries that can pay lower prices to get it.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Giving the Canadian oil access to the Gulf means the glut in the Midwest goes away, <strong>making it more expensive for the region</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>Tyson Slocum &ndash; Director of Public Citizens&rsquo; Energy Program &ndash; <a href="" target="_blank" title="explains">explains</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>How does bringing in <em>more</em> oil supply result in higher gas prices, you ask? Let me walk you through the facts. A combination of record domestic oil production and anemic domestic demand has resulted in large stockpiles of crude oil in the U.S. In particular, supplies of crude in the critical area of Cushing, OK<a href="" target="_blank" title=" increased more than 150%"> increased more than 150%</a> from 2004 to early 2011 (compared to a 40% rise for the country as a whole). Segments of the oil industry want to import additional supplies of crude from Canada, bypass the surplus crude stockpiles in Oklahoma in an effort to refine this Canadian imported oil into gasoline in the Gulf Coast <strong>with the goal of increasing gasoline exports to Latin America and other foreign markets<em>.</em></strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Cushing typically is a busy place &ndash; I noted in<a href="" target="_blank" title=" my recent Senate testimony "> my recent Senate testimony </a>how Wall Street speculators were snapping up oil storage capacity at Cushing. And all of that surplus capacity is pushing WTI prices down &ndash; and for many in the oil business, downward pressure on prices is a terrible thing. As <a href="" target="_blank" title="MarketWatch">MarketWatch</a> reports, &ldquo;[B]y running south across six U.S. states from Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico, [the Keystone pipeline] would skirt the pipeline hub at landlocked Cushing, Okla., <strong>a bottleneck that has forced Canadian producers to sell their oil at a steep discount to other crude grades facing fewer obstacles to the market</strong>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>There are several global crude oil benchmarks, and the price differential between Brent and WTI now is around $10/barrel, which is a fairly significant spread, historically speaking. <strong>Moving more Canadian crude to bypass the&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; WTI-benchmarked Cushing stocks, the industry hopes, will align WTI&rsquo;s current price discount to be <span style="text-decoration: underline;">higher</span>, and more in line with Brent.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The Keystone pipeline isn&rsquo;t just about expanding the unsustainable mining of &hellip; Canadian crude, but also to<strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;"> raise</span> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">gasoline</span> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">prices</span> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">for</span> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">American</span> <span style="text-decoration: underline;">consumers</span> whose gasoline is currently priced under WTI crude benchmark prices.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Slocum <a href="" target="_blank" title="notes">notes</a> that oil is America&rsquo;s number 1 <em>import</em> at time same that fuel is America&rsquo;s number 1 <em>export</em>.</p> <p>Specifically, more oil is being produced now under Obama than under Bush. But gas consumption is flat.</p> <p>So producers are exporting refined products. By exporting, producers keep refined products off the U.S. market, creating <em><strong>artificial scarcity</strong></em> and keeping U.S. fuel prices high.</p> <p>Slocum said that the main goal of the Keystone Pipeline is to import Canadian crude so the big American oil companies can export more refined fuel, <strong>driving up prices for U.S. consumers.</strong></p> <p><center>&nbsp;</center><center> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p></p></center> </p><p>Tom Steyer <a href="" target="_blank" title="points out">points out</a>:</p> <p><center><iframe frameborder="0" height="505" src="" width="700"></iframe></center> </p><p>&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Statements from pipeline developers reveal that the intent of the Keystone XL is <strong>not to help Americans, but to use America as an export line to markets in Asia and Europe</strong>. As Alberta&rsquo;s energy minister Ken Hughes acknowledged, &ldquo;[I]t is a strategic imperative, it is in Alberta&rsquo;s interest, in Canada&rsquo;s interest, that we get access to tidewater&hellip; to diversify away from the single continental market and be part of the global market.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>And <a href="" target="_blank" title="see this">see this</a> NBC News report.</p> <p>As Fortune explains, the U.S. is now an exporter of refined petroleum products, but Americans aren&rsquo;t getting reduced prices because <a href="" target="_blank" title="the oil companies are now pricing the fuel according to European metrics:">the oil companies are now pricing the fuel according to <em>European </em>metrics:</a></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The U.S. is now selling more petroleum products than it is buying for the first time in more than six decades. Yet Americans are paying around $4 or more for a gallon of gas, even as demand slumps to historic lows. What gives?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Americans have been told for years that if only we drilled more oil, we would see a drop in gasoline prices.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>But more drilling is happening now, and prices are still going up. That&rsquo;s because Wall Street has <a href="" rel="external nofollow" target="new" title="changed the formula for pricing gasoline">changed the formula for pricing gasoline</a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Until this time last year, gas prices hinged on the price of U.S. crude oil, set daily in a small town in Cushing, Oklahoma &ndash; the largest oil-storage hub in the country. Today, gasoline prices instead track the price of a type of oil found in the North Sea called Brent crude. And Brent crude, it so happens, trades at a <a href="" rel="external nofollow" target="new" title="premium to U.S. oil by around $20 a barrel.">premium to U.S. oil by around $20 a barrel.</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>So, even as we drill for more oil in the U.S., the price benchmark has dodged the markdown bullet by taking cues from the more expensive oil. As always, we must compete with the rest of the world for petroleum &ndash; including our own.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This is an unprecedented shift. Since the dawn of the modern-day oil markets in downtown Manhattan in the 1980s, U.S. gasoline prices have followed the domestic oil price &hellip;.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In the past year, U.S. oil prices have repeatedly traded in the double-digits below the Brent price. That is money Wall Street cannot afford to walk away from.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>To put it more literally, if a Wall Street trader or a major oil company can get a higher price for oil from an overseas buyer, rather than an American one, the overseas buyer wins. Just because an oil company drills inside U.S. borders doesn&rsquo;t mean it has to sell to a U.S. buyer. There is patriotism and then there is profit motive. This is why Americans should carefully consider the sacrifice of wildlife preservation areas before designating them for oil drilling. The harsh reality is that we may never see a drop of oil that comes from some of our most precious lands.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>***</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>With the planned construction of <a href="" rel="external" target="_blank" title="more pipelines from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico">more pipelines from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico</a>, oil will be able to leave the U.S. in greater volumes.</p> </blockquote> <p>This isn&rsquo;t old news &hellip; or just a hypothetical worry.</p> <p>As Bloomberg <a href="" target="_blank" title="reported">reported</a> in December 2013:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>West Texas Intermediate crude gained the most since September after TransCanada Corp. (TRP) said it will begin operating the southern leg of its Keystone XL pipeline to the Gulf Coast in January.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>[West Texas Intermediate oil] prices jumped to a one-month high, narrowing WTI&rsquo;s discount to Brent. TransCanada plans to start deliveries Jan. 3 to Port Arthur, Texas, via the segment of the Keystone expansion project from Cushing, Oklahoma, according to a government filing yesterday. Cushing is the delivery point for WTI futures. Crude [oil pries] also rose as U.S. total inventories probably slid for the first time since September last week.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;With the pipeline up and running, you are going to see drops in Cushing inventories,&rdquo; said Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy &amp; Economic Research in Winchester, Massachusetts. &ldquo;It drives up WTI prices far more than Brent. You are going to see a narrowing of the Brent-WTI differential.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> </div> <p>&nbsp;</p> B+ Brent Crude Business Commodity markets Crude Crude Oil Cushing, Oklahoma Economy Economy of Canada Energy Gulf Coast Gulf of Mexico Latin America Mexico Midwest NBC Oklahoma Petroleum Petroleum geology Petroleum industry Price of oil Reality Senate Testimony Unconventional oil West Texas West Texas Intermediate Tue, 24 Jan 2017 19:43:44 +0000 George Washington 586406 at Why The World Economy Is Likely To Collapse (In 1 Simple Chart) <p><em><a href="">Submitted by Chris Hamilton via Econimica blog,</a></em></p> <p><u><strong>No difficult economic terms, no tough charts, just simple math.</strong></u></p> <p><strong>1 - The worlds population of under 40 year olds (excluding Africa) has essentially peaked</strong> (chart below...bars represent 0-40yr/old population, dashed lines UN future estimates).&nbsp; <strong><em>What is interesting about the under 40 year old population is that they are responsible for about 97% of all pregnancies / births.</em></strong>&nbsp; It&#39;s not impossible for 40+ year old women to have children, just statistically very rare (particularly outside the developed world).</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 332px;" /></a></p> <p>Ok, we&#39;ve established the global under 40 population (excluding Africa)&nbsp;has essentially we lay out&nbsp;the chart below that<strong> a shrinking population (above)&nbsp;isn&#39;t replacing themselves.</strong>&nbsp; Chart below shows world fertility rates, again breaking world fertility (ex-Africa) from the African fertility rate.&nbsp; The world (ex-Africa) has fallen below the 2.1 births per female replacement level...and even Africa is rapidly slowing.</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 301px;" /></a></p> <p>A flat to shrinking child bearing population that is not reproducing at a rate to replace themselves and the fertility rates continue to fall.&nbsp; This all points to&nbsp;the potential the low&nbsp;UN&nbsp;0-40yr/old population estimate could be fairly accurate (chart 1, lower bound).&nbsp;<u><em><strong> With either the medium or low estimate, the UN is telling us they expect a massive depopulation of&nbsp;under 40 year olds&nbsp;world-over.&nbsp; Somewhere&nbsp;between 1 billion&nbsp;to 2.5 billion fewer under 40yr/olds by&nbsp;the turn of the century&nbsp;&amp; perhaps well&nbsp;in excess of a 50% decline&nbsp;</strong></em></u>(except for Africa?!?).&nbsp; I lay out why the Ex-Africa approach to viewing global economics makes sense, <a href="" target="_blank">HERE.</a></p> <p><strong>The next three charts show annual global population growth, excluding Africa (the charts show average annual population growth per five year periods). </strong></p> <p>Chart below,&nbsp;(1) annual population growth clearly peaked in the &#39;85-&#39;90 timeframe at&nbsp;about +75 million year over&nbsp;year&nbsp;growth, and 2 - the makeup of that growth has entirely shifted from primarily among under 40yr/olds to primarily 65+yr/olds.&nbsp; <strong>These trends are about to get much worse, from an economic and consumption standpoint.</strong></p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 250px;" /></a></p> <p>The chart below is focusing on the changing nature of the annual global population growth.</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 501px; height: 263px;" /></a></p> <p>Finally, a quick look at select years to show the changing nature of the global population growth...shifting from nearly entirely growth among the young to declines among the young only somewhat offset by the elderly living far longer.</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 326px;" /></a></p> <p><strong>All the interest rate cuts and debt has been undertaken&nbsp;under the paradigm&nbsp;that it would be more easily repaid in the future...but now we&#39;ve come to &quot;the future&quot; where there are fewer of us to service the debt, buy homes, buy cars, consume our way to prosperity...or pay the taxes to keep the social systems solvent.&nbsp; </strong>Basically, we are doing our best Wile E. Coyote impression...<strong>we&#39;ve gone over the cliff but somehow haven&#39;t realized it quite yet.&nbsp; </strong>What this has looked like in the US and globally...<a href="" target="_blank">HERE.</a></p> <p>Of course, the flipside is the 40+ year old world (ex-Africa) population is set to continue soaring (chart below).&nbsp; Unfortunately, by age 65, the population consumes at about 70% of it&#39;s peak earning years...and by 75, consumption falls to somewhere around 50-60%.&nbsp; The elderly are credit averse, have made their major life purchases and spending (kids, homes, college) and turn to net sellers in retirement.&nbsp; Absent a growing population of young to buy their assets (IRA&#39;s, homes, etc.), we have a small problem (central bank asset purchases to the rescue).&nbsp; As for Africa, the population growth&nbsp;there&nbsp;generally consume at a&nbsp;rate of&nbsp;5-10% the consumption of the depopulating young&nbsp;they are replacing.&nbsp; <u><strong>Global economic activity and consumption are likely to fall off a steep, high precipice.</strong></u></p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 501px; height: 304px;" /></a></p> <p>The implications economically, financially,&nbsp;societally, etc. etc. of a collapsing population of young and soaring older population should be ringing alarm bells...but instead our politicians seem officially mindless (or intentionally misleading the populace)&nbsp;in the face of a cataclysmic shift.</p> <p><strong>Just to make the is what the shift looks like for the US.&nbsp;</strong> The breakdown in growth among&nbsp;25-54yr/old employees (blue line)&nbsp;coinciding with interest rate cuts&nbsp;(black line)&nbsp;and massive&nbsp;federal debt increases (red line).&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 229px;" /></a></p> <p>The chart below shows&nbsp;total&nbsp;federal debt apportioned&nbsp;per the nearly 100 million 25-54yr/old employees (red columns)&nbsp;vs. the non-growth in wages shown by the real median household income (green line).</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 333px;" /></a></p> <p>&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="502" height="333" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Demographic economics Demography Environmental social science ETC Fertility Human geography Human overpopulation Population Population decline Population growth Total fertility rate United Nations Wile E. Coyote World population Tue, 24 Jan 2017 19:37:06 +0000 Tyler Durden 586402 at Trump Signs Executive Orders Renegotiating Keystone XL, Dakota Access Pipelines <p><strong>Update</strong>: it's official, Trump has signed executives orders to advance the construction of the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, according to which the US will renegotiate terms on the two pipelines.</p> <p><img src="" width="500" height="276" /></p> <p>As part of the announcement Trump said "if the US build pipelines, the pipes shoudl be made in the US" and added that "order streamlines cumbersome manufacturing regulations." He called the regulatory process a "tangled up mess." </p> <p>Trump told reporters in the Oval Office that the moves on the pipelines will be subject to the terms and conditions being renegotiated by the U.S. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-video"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">President Trump signs executive actions to advance construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines <a href=""></a></p> <p>— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) <a href="">January 24, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>President Barack Obama killed the proposed Keystone XL pipeline in late 2015, saying it would hurt American efforts to reach a global climate change deal. The pipeline would run from Canada to U.S. refineries in the Gulf Coast. The U.S. government needs to approve the pipeline because it crossed the border. </p> <p>The Army decided last year to explore alternate routes for the Dakota pipeline after the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and its supporters said the pipeline threatened1 drinking water and Native American cultural sites.</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>According to Bloomberg's FX strategist, Vincent Cignarella, the announcement should be favorable for the USD/CAD in the short term.&nbsp; According to him, "the U.S. economy would get an immediate benefit from construction of the project, while Canada would not gain from oil exports for at least 5 years, FX traders in Toronto said."</p> <p>Keystone project could add as many as 42,000 jobs, according to a U.S. State Department estimates.&nbsp; Keystone could help support market share but would likely exacerbate oil pricing issues, according to TD’s Mark McCormick said. In the same view, producers are unlikely to make new investments, which is key for the revival in economic growth, until oil can hold a $70-80/bbl range for a few years. </p> <p><strong>Earlier:</strong></p> <p>It is just day two of his presidency, and already Trump is taking a sledgehammer to the Obama legacy: in his latest move reported moments ago by Bloomberg, president Trump intends to sign two executive actions today <strong>that would advance construction of the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines</strong>, putting a spoke, so to say, in the train wheels of Warren Buffett's train-based oil transportation quasi-monopoly.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="313" /></a></p> <p>The orders would fulfill campaign promises Trump made to approve both pipelines, which face strong opposition from Democrats and environmentalists, but ardent support from the oil industry and the GOP. <strong>The White House said Trump plans to sign executive orders at 11 a.m. Tuesday morning, but did not provide more details, nor did it respond to the Bloomberg report.</strong></p> <p>It’s unclear what exactly the orders would do and whether they would fully approve the pipelines or take some other steps in that direction.</p> <p>If fully built by developer TransCanada Corp., Keystone would run from Alberta, Canada’s oil sands to the Gulf Coast in Texas, bringing heavy oil sands petroleum to refineries. Last month, the Obama administration ordered a comprehensive environmental impact statement to be conducted on the Dakota Access Pipeline before any decision could be made on building its final section below Lake Oahe in North Dakota. </p> <p>Dakota Access has been the subject of internationally recognized protests that have fired up environmentalists and indigenous rights activists. They say that the pipeline threatens the water supply of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, and further development of oil infrastructure threatens the climate.</p> <p>More details from <a href="">Bloomberg</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Keystone was rejected under former President Barack Obama. Trump’s move on Energy Transfer Partners LP’s 1,172-mile Dakota Access project aims to end a standoff that has stalled the $3.8 billion project since September, when the Obama administration halted work on land near Lake Oahe in North Dakota. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The moves, taken on Trump’s fourth full day in office, mark a major departure from the Obama administration’s handling of the controversial oil pipelines. The steps vividly illustrate Trump’s plan to give the oil industry more freedom to expand infrastructure and ease transportation bottlenecks.</p> </blockquote> <p>The two projects require different approvals. Keystone needs a presidential permit to build across the Canadian border, while Dakota Access, developed by Energy Transfer Partners, needs an Army Corps of Engineers easement to build under Lake Oahe.</p> <p>Expect an angry reaction from Buffett, which will promptly flow through to funded environmental protest groups, who will double down in their defense of the two pipelines, of which the Dakota Access was the prominent center of media attention in the waning days of Trump's presidency.</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="422" height="245" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> army Army Corps Barack Obama Barack Obama Business Business CAD Dakota Access Pipeline Department of State Donald Trump Finance Geography of South Dakota Gulf Coast Keystone Keystone Pipeline Market Share Money Obama Administration Obama administration Oil sands Petroleum Petroleum geology Petroleum industry Politics Presidency of Barack Obama Republican Party S&P/TSX 60 Index S&P/TSX Composite Index Standing Rock Indian Reservation TransCanada Corporation United States US government Warren Buffett White House White House Tue, 24 Jan 2017 19:19:49 +0000 Tyler Durden 586376 at You're Buying, They're Selling: Big Bank Execs Dump $100 Million In Stock As Market Soared <p>Shortly after the melt-up in US bank stocks began following Trump&#39;s election victory, <a href="">we noted heavy insider-selling (and options expiration) among Goldman Sachs executives</a>. Well the selling never stopped, as <a href="">WSJ reports </a><strong>executives at the biggest Wall Street banks have sold nearly $100 million worth of stock</strong> since the presidential election, <strong>more than in that same period in any year over the past decade</strong>.</p> <p><a href=""><em>As we detailed in mid-November,</em></a> while the mainstream media proclaims the surge in bank stocks as heralding a new dawn in everything-is-awesome-ness for America, we note that <span><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>insiders at Goldman Sachs sold $205 million of stock since Nov. 8, company filings show. </strong></span></span></p> <p><span><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>That&rsquo;s three times more than the group has sold in any month for at least five years,</strong></span> data compiled by Bloomberg show.</span></p> <p><span>Not a bad week for Cohn, Blankfein, and Viniar...</span></p> <p><a href=""><img src="" style="width: 600px; height: 248px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And since then, as the bank&#39;s stock prices have soared, despite lackluster earnings expectations and a yield curve that did not steepen (pumping up NIM)...</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" style="width: 600px; height: 317px;" /></a></p> <p><a href="">The Wall Street Journal reports,</a> <strong>bankers sold nearly $100 million worth of stock since the presidential election, more than in that same period in any year over the past decade...</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The share sales occurred as financial stocks soared since Nov. 9 on expectations of lighter regulation, lower taxes and pro-growth economic policies. The KBW Nasdaq Bank index is up nearly 20% since Donald Trump&rsquo;s victory, about triple the gains notched by the broader market.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>In addition to the share sales, bank executives have sold another $350 million worth of stock to cover the cost of exercising options</strong>, filings show. That is twice the amount sold for that purpose at big banks in the year leading up to the election.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>An added bonus: <strong>The post-election run-up in share prices gave value to some options that were likely to expire worthless. </strong>At Goldman Sachs Group Inc., for instance, the postelection bounce turned half a billion dollars worth of stock options into winners&mdash;some just days before they were set to expire.</p> </blockquote> <p>They are all doing it...</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 249px;" /></a></p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 253px;" /></a></p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 252px;" /></a></p> <p><strong>Further selling may be in store,</strong> and not all big banks have filed reports on selling by all their top executives.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>What&rsquo;s more, bank employees typically can&rsquo;t sell shares or exercise options in the run-up to earnings reports. The big banks finished posting their latest round of earnings last week, meaning <strong>employees will now in most cases be free to sell.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Those sales won&rsquo;t be as apparent, though. <strong>Banks only have to disclose trades for a handful of top executives, although some rank-and-file employees are paid largely in stock and options.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><em><strong>So who is the sucker at this table?</strong></em></p> <p>Dick Bove gets it... &quot;<em>banks won&#39;t be able to hold on to the earnings boost they get from higher interest rates. The hole in the bottom of the piggy bank, as he described it, would be that higher rates would also hurt the value of financial assets held by the bank, thus leaking out any benefits from increasing borrowing costs.</em>&quot;</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="true" bgcolor="#131313" height="298" src=";byGuid=3000586989&amp;size=530_298" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="530"></iframe></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="957" height="403" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bank Index Borrowing Costs Business Dick Bove Donald Trump Economy of New York City Executive compensation in the United States Finance goldman sachs Goldman Sachs Goldman Sachs NASDAQ Nasdaq Bank New York City NIM Rockefeller Center Subprime mortgage crisis Troubled Asset Relief Program Wall Street Journal Yield Curve Tue, 24 Jan 2017 19:17:16 +0000 Tyler Durden 586401 at Trump Orders Media Blackout At EPA: Bans Use Of Social Media, Bars New Contracts <p>The Trump administration has instituted a media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency and barred staff from awarding any new contracts or grants according to the AP. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">BREAKING: Trump bans EPA employees from providing updates on social media or to reporters, bars awarding new contracts or grants.</p> <p>— The Associated Press (@AP) <a href="">January 24, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>Emails sent to EPA staff since President Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday and reviewed by The Associated Press, <strong>detailed the specific prohibitions banning press releases, blog updates or posts to the agency's social media accounts. </strong>On Monday, the <a href="">Huffington Post reported </a>that EPA grants had been frozen, with agency employees barred from speaking of the matter.&nbsp; The memo ordering the social media blackout is shown below.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="493" /></a></p> <p>Cited by The Hill, Myron Ebell, who leads the Trump EPA transition, confirmed the freeze to ProPublica.&nbsp; “They’re trying to freeze things to make sure nothing happens they don’t want to have happen, so any regulations going forward, contracts, grants, hires, they want to make sure to look at them first,” Ebell told ProPublica. </p> <p>Trump's pick for EPA director, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, has frequently challenged agency policy in court.&nbsp; </p> <p>The Trump administration reportedly told the Department of the Interior <strong>to stop tweeting from its accounts over the weekend after the National Park Service's Twitter account retweeted a post about the crowd sizes at Trump's inauguration Friday. </strong>The agency <a href="">brought back </a>its accounts on Saturday.</p> <p>As part of the Trump administration's "temporary suspension" of all new business activities at the department, the EPA has been told to halt all contracts, grants and interagency agreements pending a review, including issuing task orders or work assignments to EPA contractors. The orders are expected to have a significant and immediate impact on EPA activities nationwide. </p> <p>According to <a href="">Reuters</a>, the White House sent a letter to the EPA's Office of Administration and Resources Management ordering the freeze on Monday, an EPA staffer told Reuters. "Basically no money moving anywhere until they can take a look," the staffer said, asking not to be named. </p> <p>The EPA awards billions of dollars worth of grants and contracts every year to support programs around environmental testing, cleanups and research. It was unclear if the freeze would impact existing contracts, grants and agreements or just future ones. Myron Ebell said he believed the move was related to Trump's executive order on Monday temporarily halting all government hiring outside the military. </p> <p>Trump has promised to slash U.S. environmental regulation as a way to promote oil drilling and mining. An administration official told Reuters the president would sign two executive actions on Tuesday to advance construction of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, a sharp reversal from the Obama administration. Trump's nominee to run the EPA, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, is awaiting Senate confirmation. Pruitt sued the EPA repeatedly as Oklahoma's top prosecutor.</p> <p>Trump also has drawn heavily from the energy industry lobby and pro-drilling think tanks to build its landing team for the EPA, according to a list of the newly introduced 10-member team seen by Reuters on Monday.</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>It appears that the first intra-agency vendetta for the new president has broken out not surprisingly with the agency that is most at risk from Trump's upcoming policy changes, and which was catalyzed by the EPA's role in the bizarre media scandal over the "participation" in Trump's inaguruation rally. The EPA has yet to make an official statement. </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="640" height="360" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Business Climate change skepticism and denial Department of the Interior Donald Trump Economy Environmental Protection Agency National Park Service Obama Administration Obama administration Oklahoma Political positions of Donald Trump Reuters Scott Pruitt Senate The Apprentice Trump Administration Trump: The Art of the Deal Twitter Twitter United States United States Environmental Protection Agency White House White House WWE Hall of Fame Tue, 24 Jan 2017 18:54:05 +0000 Tyler Durden 586400 at