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China Sold Second-Largest Amount Ever Of US Treasurys In December: And Guess Who Comes To The Rescue

Tyler Durden's picture


While we will have more to say about the disastrous December TIC data shortly, which was released early today, and which showed a dramatic plunge in foreign purchases of US securities in December - the month when the S&P soared to all time highs and when everyone was panicking about the 3% barrier in the 10 Year being breached and resulting in a selloff in Tsy paper - one thing stands out. The chart below shows holdings of Chinese Treasurys (pending revision of course, as the Treasury department is quite fond of ajdusting this data series with annual regularity): in a nutshell, Chinese Treasury holdings plunged by the most in two years, after China offloaded some $48 billion in paper, bringing its total to only $1268.9 billion, down from $1316.7 billion, and back to a level last seen in March 2013! 


This was the second largest dump by China in history with the sole exception of December 2011.


That this happened at a time when Chinese FX reserves soared to all time highs, and when China had gobs of spare cash lying around and not investing in US paper should be quite troubling to anyone who follows the nuanced game theory between the US and its largest external creditor, and the signals China sends to the world when it comes to its confidence in the US.

Yet what was truly surprising is that despite the plunge in Chinese holdings, and Japanese holdings which also dropped by $4 billion in December, is that total foreign holdings of US Treasurys increased in December, from $5716.9 billion to 5794.9 billion.

Why? Because of this country. Guess which one it is without looking at legend.


That's right: at a time when America's two largest foreign creditors, China and Japan, went on a buyers strike, the entity that came to the US rescue was Belgium, which as most know is simply another name for... Europe: the continent that has just a modest amount of its own excess debt to worry about. One wonders what favors were (and are) being exchanged behind the scenes in order to preserve the semblance that "all is well"?


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Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:55 | 4448160 Bindar Dundat
Bindar Dundat's picture

They used to call this the kiting of cheques .  

Because of instant communications  the only ones who can do it now are central bankers:-(

This little game could be played out forever whilst our pockets get picked for 5.276% per year  of the total transactions kited.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:53 | 4448152 Variance Doc
Variance Doc's picture

Disagree with money will not the source.  The glue "holding" this shit sandwich together is confidence - the confidence in the dollar, which is weaking every day, backed by the weaking US MIC.  Once the confidence goes, so does the dollar.

One probable break in confidence will stem from the extreme divergence of the physical and paper gold markets (NOT on COMEX or LBMA, etc.) 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:01 | 4448513 NihilistZero
NihilistZero's picture

As long as Treasury notes are still backed by the MIC why would you expect a loss of confidence?  I mean people have been preaching the dollars ens since at least the 70's and it hasn't happened.  As for some grand default I doubt it will happen we've been defaulting for forever through inflation and all it seems to do is keep all the hamsters in the wheel running to keep up just like TPTB want them to.  Goldbugs view has always seemed nonsensical to me outside of a full on SHTF scenario.  And even then it is unlikely to be more than what it has been throughout most history, a medium of exchange market valued against the commodities people really need.

The only relevant issue to me is how TPTB can manage the consequences of foolishly pulling demand forward for almost 30 years.  The questions they seem to face is does pulling forward just a little more demand flaten the inevitable downward trajectory of not and how to preserve TPTB through the process.  I think tapering stays and the malaise truly sets in.  The FED nor any of the other banks weild absolute control so My guess is they quit while they're ahead after saving the largest financial institutions and let the inevitable process continue.  There will be bubblicious spikes in the economy here and there to keep the BIg Club folks enriched but most everyone will just slog along.  Not as exciting as the Mad Max apocalypse but I think it's probable.  A major breakthrough in energy will be the thing that eventualy pulls us out.  Who knows exactly how close we are to such a thing.  Nuclear Fusion would be a world wide game changer however...

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:42 | 4448722 Overfed
Overfed's picture

I can see the future as Mad Max, but probably not The Road Warrior.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 15:14 | 4449151 NihilistZero
NihilistZero's picture

Well said my cinephile friend.  Mad Max didn't see half bad to me.  Sure the sate funded police were impotent in the face of crime, but they were also impotent at policing everything else.  As long as you had the guts to protect yourself and "community organize" you had an arnarchist paradise :-)

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:00 | 4448766 SDShack
SDShack's picture

I see 2 options. The first is we slog along like you say, Pump & Dump, Rinse & Repeat. But with a very more militant security state keeping tabs on everyone (under the guise of "it's for their own protection" of course) in an effort to control them completely and keep them subserviant to the ever expanding crony capitalist state. Evidence of this is all around us. Rogue cops terrorizing citizens. NSA spying. 0zer0care, SNAP, amnesty, BATF gun running to Mexico. IRS targeting tea partry groups, DHS buying billions of rounds of ammo, Shadow Courts approving domestic security abuses in the name of the Patriot Act, and on and on and on. Eventually, the govt will over reach on this front in a spectacular fashion and the blowback will be cataclismic. The second option is the world will continue to disintegrate into haves and have nots as central banks continue in the race to devalue their own currency to keep the debt ponzi growing. This will place unsusteinable burdens on commodity prices, especially fuel and food. That will cause revolutions in unstable countries that will eventually drag "stable" countries into the mix in unforseen ways. Think Arab Spring 2.0 but on a global scale. Absent these 2 options, I don't see anything stopping TPTB in their quest for the New Feudal World Order. Scenario 2 is probably the more likely outcome because it is harder for TPTB to control.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 15:24 | 4449187 NihilistZero
NihilistZero's picture

You make a compelling argument, though I think option one is more likely because TPTBs ONLY concern is control.  This is what so many stock, gold and RE bulls and bears fail to grasp in my opinion.  They think "Oh the FED won't allow a stock crash so gold will go up" or "RE can't crash because wealth effect..."  TPTB have one goal, to retain their power by maintaining the system that provides it.  That systems requirements are fluid because it isn't a "market" but series of rigged games of differing components and players.  TPTB will fuck over any and all components and players in any way needed to ensure the system remains intact.  Both the most optimistic Bulls and doomsayer Bears miss this simple fact.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:12 | 4448838 Variance Doc
Variance Doc's picture

The loss of confidence is a PROCESS, not an event.  And the process does not follow human calendar time, so the fact that it has not happened in the past is irrelevant for the near future.  But, your argument is of no surprise because of the mathematical illiteracy of people.  Exponential functions govern the fiat system, not linear calendar time.  The room for the TPTB to move levers around to keep the system, as we know it, afloat is getting smaller and smaller at an exponential rate.  There is not enough growth (read cheap energy) to keep the system going.

The fact that you mention ”Goldbugs”, upon the talk of gold markets identifies you as a fool.  I never mentioned anything about buying gold.  I just mentioned the stress created between the physical and paper markets as a probable source of loss of confidence.

And while we're here.  There is a *big* difference between currency and money, which you lack the knowledge of.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 17:54 | 4449215 NihilistZero
NihilistZero's picture

So you've managed to call me illiterate, foolish and lacking in money knowledge while claiming I said you were a goldbug when I didn't.  You also fail to to give me credit for acknowledging energy problems for the world economy and labeling a breakthrough in that field as the only thing to bring us out of the malaise.

All in response to a post that did not attack you or your position as much as offered an alternative viewpoint.

Thanks for being my Dick Comment of the Week, and it's only Tuesday :-)

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:03 | 4448199 Dr. Engali
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For cripes sakes. We are not dealing with money. We are dealing with currency, and there is a major difference.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:15 | 4448248 CrashisOptimistic
CrashisOptimistic's picture


None whatsoever.  The value of money (or currency) is via only the agreement of parties.

The value of oil is joules, and no agreement or disagreement is relevant.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:38 | 4448701 Unprepared
Unprepared's picture

I think a whole economic "school" was built around that idea. And it failed.

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 02:44 | 4451608 Groin
Groin's picture

Its the difference between parties trading something for something, or something for nothing. Big difference IMO.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:09 | 4448555 Kirk2NCC1701
Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Correct.  Which is why "Don't fight the Fed" still holds true for all individuals and companies.

Only when a combination of crises puts the Fed into the IC unit or onto its deathbed, is it safe to "pile on" as an individual.  Until then... proceed at own risk/peril, lest you become the Useful Fool and a Statistic (roadkill).

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:03 | 4448808 silverserfer
silverserfer's picture

Bonds= bondage. CB are creating a huge tar baby and everything that gets thrown at it sticks to it and makes it bigger.

Monetary stimulus= desperation and fear of losing power by bankers.


Dead presidents should all have worried brows on the notes.  


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 18:15 | 4449974 JimS
JimS's picture

You are ablsolutely right, Doc.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:08 | 4448218 gorillaonyourback
gorillaonyourback's picture

Yes I agre oil will be. Gail tverberg crunched some numbers,  interesting graph she made

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:32 | 4448335 over45
over45's picture

oil and food.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:33 | 4448664 Jumbotron
Jumbotron's picture

Quite right, Crash......All currency is simply a proxy, a symbolic representation, of the value of labor and the value of whatever real, tangible natural commodity was used in the course of said labor along with the value (added) of the output of said labor using said commodity.


Oil is THE PRIMARY REASON for the magical world we live in today and it's peak ( in terms of the cheap stuff ) is THE PRIMARY REASON that the global Ponzi Scheme has been created and is marching towards full retard mode.....( some would say it's already there ).

Note....I said PRIMARY REASON.....not ONLY reason.  After the inevitable collapse to equilibrium....(which will involve the inevitable pendulum swing from greatest height to lowest depth until the waveform relaxes)....and the amount of labor's output is matched to the new energy reality.......(lot less magic.....lot more hard labor.....much less new stuff every six months.....much more prudence in how labor is used and for what purpose)....there will STILL BE MONEY......and it will still be exchanged for other types of money and the money changers will STILL be trying to scam their cut.  And MOST CERTAINLY the effects of the rate of flow in and out of countries and economies during this collapse will carve out certain economies worse than others.....much like the wave action ON TOP of a tsunami.  But's the TSUNAMI ( aka Peak Cheap Energy) that does the overall damage......the wave action on top ( money destruction) just makes matters worse for only certain areas.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:51 | 4448764 Jumbotron
Jumbotron's picture

And to follow up.....seeing as how money is defined as credit. and vice versa.....then it's not really money that is being destroy at all but credit......which as someone above rightly's all about "confidence".

Quite right.....the paper money in your wallet is an I.O.U......a symbolic representation of credit......that is no longer backed by something tangible like gold or silver....but the "Full Faith and Credit" of the United States of America.

Faith....and Credit ( ie....credibility) other's all a confidence game.  A sham and a scam. 

But one that can keep on going as long as the inputs to the global system are cheap enough to keep the wheels of the Ponzi machine cheaply energy.

That's is now coming to an end.  When you have to scrape the sides of the toilet bowl to get something that kinda looks and acts like oil (keragens from shale) or scrape off the top layers of what used to be the floor of a shallow pre-historic sea (Canadian tar sands) just to keep up with the real and demonstrable declines in light, sweet know that Peak Cheap Energy is here and here to stay.  Once the price of the PRIMARY SOURCE OF ALL GLOBAL INDUSTRIAL LABOR goes up thus forcing the costs of ALL GLOBAL VALUE ADDED OUTPUT to go up as well.....while the incomes of most of the world, particularly in America are stagnate or NOT increasing enough to match or exceed the increase in the costs of the end value added product.......then the ability to repay and extend credit further and at the rate we have been doing so....which FAR EXCEEDS the natural and real costs of the inputs.....starts to collapse......and naturally the entire, bubblelicious world we have brought forward through time.....(which is what credit does.....allows you to buy things now that would otherwise take you a long time to save up for).....starts to stagnate and collapse to equilibrium to match the real cost of labor which is tied to the real cost of the inputs needed for said labor......namely energy in the form of fossil fuels.....and more to the oil.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:08 | 4448818 Jumbotron
Jumbotron's picture

Yesteryear...........100 barrels of oil for every barrel of oil used in order to get said oil out of the ground.



Today....scraping the sides of the toilet bowl.........less than 20 barrels for every 1 used.....some estimates have it down below 10 to 1.



not to mention Canadian Tar Sands......



Yet we are told we are AWASHED in oil.....DROWNING IN OIL.......America is a NET EXPORTER of oil.


Really.........what are you paying for gas ?  Is it cheaper in either real terms or inflation adjusted terms as it was 10 or 20 years ago?     How about the cost of food ?  Lots of energy needed for Big Ag.   How's that working out for you ?


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 20:52 | 4450632 thestarl
thestarl's picture

Look at the uprisings over the last few years from Tunisia to Eygpt Turkey to Brazil the PIIGS Thailand the list goes on but at the core of it cost of living the divide between the haves and have nots.

There are alot of smart people on ZH who have there heads buried up there own arses on this issue Jumbotron 


Wed, 02/19/2014 - 14:40 | 4453473 Jumbotron
Jumbotron's picture

"There are alot of smart people on ZH who have there heads buried up there own arses on this issue Jumbotron "


No doubt looking for oil.

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 03:38 | 4451653 Groin
Groin's picture

A year or so ago I publicly coined the term "Peak EROI", I don't know if it has been used before though. My point was in reference to the fact that the exponential growth in human population turned in 1961 to negative growth, and inflection point when graphed. Keeping in mind the Seneca effect, 1961 was Peak EROI. Energy underwrites all economic activity.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:04 | 4448816 FreudianSlip
FreudianSlip's picture

water, food, energy


basics can become extremely simple very fast

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:42 | 4449002 Jack Burton
Jack Burton's picture

I don't understand the down votes "CrashhisOptimistic". You are pointing out the basic seperation between real wealth and money. This fact escapes some people, obviously. But money, fiat, that is printed by the trillions. What we can not escape is the limits on real wealth. Energy is at the core of real wealth, it is why we live in the modern world, it IS the wealth of nations. Any rising price of production for energy will impact the economy negatively. Any energy crisis would crash the world economy. And as we know, food is now a product of enery input.

I think your post is right on the money +100. No negatives votes needed for a fact like you pointed out!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 18:00 | 4449911 beaker
beaker's picture

I'm not sure a lot of readers on this thread realize the circle jerk nature of this.

The article stated Belguim was a net buyer of most of this.  Where did they get the dollars? From the Fed who just bought EU paper - what ever the fuck collateral quality of that was, who knows?

It's like a toilet bowl swishing around - until it doesn't any more.

Store you wealth in some real asset and hunker down. They'll be wiping their ass with that paper .... someone will be.  Probably the pension funds.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:46 | 4448107 falak pema
falak pema's picture

your Admin  didn't "bail them out", they helped spread the state DEBT disease around first world.

In France alone the Goverment debt SPIKED by 500 billion <Euro to support the banking sector OVERNIGHT in 2009.

All the FED did was to provide swap lines to allow convertibility of USD to Euros directly via CB, so that those Euro banks, which were dead in the water until the local country BAILED them out, had SWAP lines in place to do their USD trades which were IMPOSSIBLE, as their US PD counterparts (Citi, BOA, JPM) were ALL constrained by the Lehman collapse and had closed all foreign transaction thru  total internal gridlock.

You seem to forget this shit storm began in US PRIVATE banks + shadow banking, and spread to their Euro counterparts, dragging down EUro zone states to bail out the whole euro zone caboodle just like the FED  did with their US couterparts. 

We ALL got poorer as a result and its getting worse all the time.

US tax payers are not the only loosers 'cos as CONSUMERS they have won bigtime all the while the party lasted, and its still going on under the RESERVE currency umbrella. Not so much in Eurozone where the austerity hits those whose economy is not under German umbrella running the Euro. 


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:05 | 4448205 fuu
Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:25 | 4448301 falak pema
falak pema's picture

So the FED bought a lot of that toxic MBS issued by their own banks.

It only goes to show that the SYSTEMIC risk spread by the City-WS cabal was what led to Lehman et al collapse.

And the deal was that every COUNTRY's CB clean out the LIABILITES of its own banks to the extent these banks ISSUED the toxic stuff on to the market. 

I'm sure there was a lot of switching behind the scenes where ECB and FED imposed their own countries to reign in toxic MBS on the market issued by their PDs. 

Assuredly the US had the biggest amount to pull back, whence the FED roll of having the biggest vacuum cleaner.

Cause and effect of the global CB deal. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:35 | 4448358 fuu
fuu's picture

Works for me I guess, doesn't really matter. The FED bought junk for dollars from foreign banks through their PD's, it wasn't just CB swap deals.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:46 | 4448113 XAU XAG
XAU XAG's picture

after China offloaded some $48 billion in paper, 


$48 billion buys alot of Gold!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:49 | 4448130 SAT 800
SAT 800's picture

probably a factor in the recent upswing in PM prices; it's not a vote of confidence in the dollar. there's no reason at all to expect the dollar to change it's 100year old pattern of losing purchasing power; things like this cause significant players to go, hmmm. And then they divert more holdings into PM's.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:36 | 4448685 zeroheckler
zeroheckler's picture

about 1130 tons

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:27 | 4448172 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

OMT and unsterilized QE by the EU is the next shell under which the red ball is going to be hidden in this 3 card monti scam.


ECB has a lot of tentacles aka EU states to create the illusion of independence and choice to hide behind while propping up this dead horse a little longer.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:42 | 4448402 curbyourrisk
curbyourrisk's picture

Who wants to bet where the MONEY came from to support the European purchases?????

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:24 | 4448616 Joe A
Joe A's picture

The US finanical institutions fooled everybody else with the MBS. Europeans bought a lot of that stuff so Europe bailed the US financials institutions out in the first place. But yes, this is part of the cycle, rubbing eachothers backs. It proves the ties between the US and Europe versus the rest of the world.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 16:50 | 4449582 rubiconsolutions
rubiconsolutions's picture

But, won't Bitcoin solve the world's monetary crisis? At least according to "The World According To Garp, er, fonestar".


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 21:16 | 4450749 Buck Johnson
Buck Johnson's picture

Exactly, deals where struck and Belgium was used as the front man to buy debt in order to hide who is buying it (hell it could be the US buying it via a shell in Belgium).  When this whole system implodes, it will change the power structure of the West, trust me.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:33 | 4448051 jubber
jubber's picture

JPM Brussells ?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:40 | 4448088 Gringo Viejo
Gringo Viejo's picture

Dollar just broke beneath 80. Be interesting to see if the PPT has enough hair left to push it back up.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:34 | 4448054 Unknown Poster
Unknown Poster's picture

Iron ore must be preferable to US paper.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:12 | 4448565 LMAOLORI
LMAOLORI's picture



China has it own debt problems. Then there's the shadow banks where additional public debt is -  the Chinese Ministry of Finance owns the majority shares in them. Central Banks scratching each others backs it seems to me anyway.


Not a Run on China, But a Brisk Walk


Chinese bad loan manager Cinda sits on its own debt mountain


The $15 trillion shadow over Chinese banks


Presenting China's Largest Shadow Bank
Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:34 | 4448057 _ConanTheLibert...
_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

They can do much better than that. DUMP YOU LITTLE BITCHEZ!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:35 | 4448062 pods
pods's picture

That one was on the tip of my tongue.  Belgium.

Must be Sudden Debt sinking away his gains?

This whole shitshow is coordinated.  Next month the household sector will pick up the tab. After that, we will make a deal with some other CB.

Swaps, repos, and a dozen other complicated scams will keep this alive a lot longer than I have thought.

The weakest will fall first.  You can see the cracks already in SA.  The printing is overwhelming everyone, a bit at a time.

Fucking bankers are worse than kudzu.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:52 | 4448145 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

"This whole shitshow is coordinated."

that's all you need to know.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:00 | 4448186 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

My clothes are coordinated too. Some might call them a shitshow.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:04 | 4448202 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

Doc you are all I have left on here to talk to QE about. It was QE4eva Doc, but the fed is landing the fuckin plane. I am astonished.

This report (contrary to big headlines) illustrates that if the fed wants to cut back on purchases, they have have willing buyers.

Even if you cancel out Belgium it would have been the highest recorded UST holdings. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:11 | 4448228 derek_vineyard
derek_vineyard's picture

around and around and around it goes.....where (and when) it stops nobody knows

and O so desperately wanted larry summers at his helm

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:22 | 4448255 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Collateral Fonz. In a highly levered system everybody needs collateral, and as the reserve currency U.S. treasuries are collateral good. It doesn't matter how much they inflate away the buying power when everybody else is doing it too.


Edit. They all know that the first one to sell brings the whole shitshow down. Who wants to take the blame for that? Somebody will always pick up the printing slack.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:25 | 4448299 derek_vineyard
derek_vineyard's picture

best liquid collateral in the paper besed system......but as someone on here once said "when the shit storm hits, i believe that gold/silver/pms will be left standing.  what form or how we get to that shitstorm i dont know"....thats paraphrased  (shhhh,,i know fonz said it...its good advice)

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:27 | 4448310 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

I still believe that, if/when that storm hits, that will hopefully be the case. But I thought that storm was supposed to hit a long time ago, and it seems to be getting further away by the day.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:40 | 4448330 derek_vineyard
derek_vineyard's picture

sure does seem further.....but my son's onboard and if i dont need my silver....he will  (i like silver because it is lower denomination and makes you less of a target than the pretty yellow stuff)


many pounds of silver and a few of gold

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:39 | 4448380 pods
pods's picture

Fonz, if I might interject, I think that 2008 is still fresh in our minds.  Days of 500 point losses and bank stocks sinking into penny status.  

What might be the model is Japan, with a long slow grind down.  The long and slow grind doesn't get the heart pumping like seeing the DOW down 500, but that might be the case.

The FED has held up well over this time period. Maybe they are putting freshly minted FRNs in every Congress critters stocking for Xmas, idk. But public confidence in the FED has not dropped. Shit, most of the public has no clue about the FED. They have been taught to leave that up to the smart people. That is why Ben can lie about printing and there are no repercussions. But the FEDs survival depends on public acceptance of it.

The FED printing in reality also must mirror government deficits or it will drain the system of good collateral.  With deficits dropping (not promises but yearly operating costs), the FED has to taper.

I think that now we must at least entertain the thought of a long, generations long, slow grind down into 3rd world status, with some big hiccups along the way.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:53 | 4448437 derek_vineyard
derek_vineyard's picture

eating a few percent to inflation each year is the grind we are in.  global competition was inevitable.  too many people now share the less bountiful earth.  i have no solution except to live debt free and under consume the average joe.

the largest priority of our FED is too keep the wealth effect elevated.  and that rewards bad behavior.  we are a stupid people.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:59 | 4448501 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

I am basically posing a question here. Can the markets continue to operate on their own and possibly even climb higher while we witness the "economy" continue to sink. No one is doubting we are witnessing the death of the middle class really begin to pick up pace. However that reality does  ot necessarily have to bleed into the markets anytime soon. Especially when reports like this show the world is in on this together. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:09 | 4448546 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Personally I'm beginning to think that there are certain areas where the excess liquidity is allowed to go, but if you deviate too far from those areas the Fed brings a hammer down on you. Stocks, bonds, and real estate are good regardless of the economic reality, precious metals and other tangibles are bad.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:17 | 4448582 Tinky
Tinky's picture

While I continue to respect your point that there is a worldwide, coordinated effort to keep the economy afloat (if not somewhat stable), I still maintain that the system is breaking down already, and that there will be an event (or series of events) that greatly accelerate the process in the near future.

Those who argue that TPTB can continue this charade for many years are, in my view, deluded. The situation today is radically different than the '70's, or '80's Japan, etc. The world is far more unstable. The masses have been lied to for many years, and the papering over with false recovery memes through captured media is rapidly coming to an end. There is already serious unrest in a number of countries around the world, currency wars are heating up rapidly, and the gold suppression efforts appear to be increasingly ineffectual.

I'm not nearly smart enough to pinpoint a precise inflection point (see Martin Amstrong for that), but I can't imagine that things won't begin to unravel in a serious way sometime over the next couple of years.

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 04:00 | 4451680 Groin
Groin's picture

Fonz I have been reading you for quite some time and respect your thinking ability. What I am going to suggest to you, and I expect and answer when you do :-) is that there is a currently a divergence in place that will grow exponentially. That divergence is the difference between real assets, and claimns over those assets. Frame it like that and see where your imagination takes you.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:12 | 4448849 SDShack
SDShack's picture

Govt deficits will soon return with a vengence. They only dropped because of the sequester, and that is gone. Congress has caved and given 0zer0 the green light. Now 0zer0 can raise the debt ceiling at will, so no way there will be ANY deficit cuts of ANY kind.  Just look at the Farm Bill that was just passed. Full of pork for everyone. Next up will be 0zer0care, costing trillions more than expected, and generating nothing because no one is signing up because it's too expensive. That will lead to bailouts of the Insurance Companies, which will be more deficit spending. Finally, granting amnesty to 10+million illegals will push the govt dole percentage to 50%. No, the little blip in decreasing deficits is over.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:20 | 4448856 Raging Debate
Raging Debate's picture

PODS - I see it more like several years of stagflation until much of the Boomers retire and trade has rebalanced. In real terms we already have had 13 years of stagflation. Twenty years not rough enough for ya?

I'll never get my 20 years of labor that was siphoned off back. Worst? The criminals got away with. As in completely. Finding out how the world works differently then taught in Sunday school can be a rude awakening.

The middle class has been destroyed. While I am optimistic life will go on the damage from all this will make all of us work harder until we're dead. Maybe millennial's get there break in 2020's but by then it past the time for family formation. There is much to grieve over and be upset about but Bernanke landing the plane to me isn't one of them. This service is bery valuable because robbers still abound and while this may decrease eventually, they will always be some.

I encourage people here to get out into the local community, make friends and have fun, because it is at the local level the economy will rebuild. And if your looking for work it mainly still is on who you know for better chances at prosperity.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 17:41 | 4449824 RSloane
RSloane's picture

I hear you, Raging Debate. +1. For me it has always been the local community. Most of us shop local, grow some of our own food, barter and trade that, and shop at farms for meats and produce we don't grow. We may pay a little more for shopping locally but the stores we rely on are still there and so far we don't sport any of our own abandoned strip malls. We have a huge influx of tourists for the summer that support our restaurants and shops on the docks that were built mainly with them in mind. Our local fishermen work all year round as do our farmers. There are more and more contractors moving into the area and even they are turning their pristine perfect back yards into vegetable and fruit gardens.

I agree with you completely. Its at the local level that economies will be rebuilt or survive in the first place. I wish you well.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:58 | 4448493 RSloane
RSloane's picture

No storm. Tiny papercuts over the next thirty or so years.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:25 | 4448625 Oldwood
Oldwood's picture

I see small businesses bleeding to death every day.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 17:50 | 4449859 JimS
JimS's picture

Think in terms of an excellent juggler. You keep throwing him objects to toss into the mix. At some point it will fail, but it could go along for quite some time, then it won't. You'll wake up one morning and it'll have collapsed. I saw it happen in Vietnam on October, 21, 1968.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 18:11 | 4449953 JimS
JimS's picture

On October, 21, 1968, in Vietnam, Military Payment Certificate (MPC) series #641 was changed to series #661, overnight. That next morning the entire Vietnamese population's currency disappeared, and became worthless. Their whole livelihood had been depending on that old series 641, and that morning it was totally worthless. Outside my compound Vietnamese civilians were tossing bundles of the old series 641 over the fence crying/swearing in anger, wanting us to exchange the worthless currency for the new one. We couldn't, as, when we woke up that fateful morning, we were given one chance to exchange our own currency. Bingo, their fate was sealed. It could happen here in a heartbeat. That was the best kept secret that I saw during the war.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 16:07 | 4449363 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

*UST* paper used to be the best liquid collateral (before ZIRP) now excess reserves *FRB* paper are the best liquid collateral (outside of certain short term price shocks in certain markets for specific collateral).

I'm sure some enterprising central banker will use that logic to demand MOAR printing (or have a staffer convey the same message through their Meat Puppet Schumer at some hearing in proper CYA SOP).

But once TSHTF it really comes down to what TPTB and TBTF can accomplish in one weekend- if you feel lucky punk... (and are diversified across both institutions and jurisdictions) it could be the buying opportunity of a lifetime, or a complete wipe-out. But if you have physical gold or silver in your possession-- you don't have to worry about any of that.

I only sleep 4 hrs a night, so when I do sleep- I prefer to sleep well.

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 07:16 | 4451785 thestarl
thestarl's picture

Are you actually watching what is happening around the globe.

If this reaches critical mass here with the mob mentality you better be well armed and don't think your fucking gold or your pm's will make much difference it'll be pure and simply survival of the fittest.Everything brakes down and we revert to primeval savagery and all your learned intellect counts for fucking nothing as you beg for your miserable life as this repressed anger manifests itself in a bloodlust orgy.

There is no salvation for the hypocrite,never had to be this way but its the path we've chosen. 

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 04:11 | 4451686 Groin
Groin's picture

Collateral Doc, that is the bottom line so keep working on that train of thought. I know mine isn't available to them anymore :-) As that of a few others I have given advice to.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:05 | 4448204 RSloane
RSloane's picture

This "shitshow" is incredibly controlled on a global level. There maybe unforseen burps and whorls, but in the long run power will not be denied.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 16:12 | 4449403 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

It's not controlled-- it's a frankenfreak GMO creation that has certain engineered traits which facilitate the perception of control, but the end result will be no different that of Shelley's.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:28 | 4448316 Pheonyte
Pheonyte's picture

Swaps, repos, and a dozen other complicated scams will keep this alive a lot longer than I have thought.

Imagine a boot stamping on a human face forever.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:35 | 4448063 RaceToTheBottom
RaceToTheBottom's picture

Three card monty on an industrial scale

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:36 | 4448066 WarPony
WarPony's picture

NATO (headquartered in Brussels) is our "friend" - yeah right.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:46 | 4448120 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

sure we are...

we come in peace...


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:51 | 4448135 SAT 800
SAT 800's picture

It was astonishing to watch France Bomb Libya; in the interests of "human rights"; apparently, I lived too long.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 15:26 | 4449205 WarPony
WarPony's picture

with a central bank installed and oil being shipped half way through the campaign.  But, hey, now we can pay our fair share of NATO's expenses

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:36 | 4448067 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

So it's true then, we are becoming more like China every day.

This should end well.

Hedge accordingly.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:18 | 4448892 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Agenda 21. Planned self-destruction based on sustainability, aka neo-feudalism.


Read it and weep.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 15:27 | 4449208 Herd Redirectio...
Herd Redirection Committee's picture

The readvent of slavery.  This time in the form of debt slavery.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:38 | 4448070 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Worldwide bond circlejerk.  Purchased no doubt with FED money.  Essentially the FED buying their own debt.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:46 | 4448118 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Yes, just like the PBoC. (and every other central bank on the planet)


hedge accordingly.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:56 | 4448168 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Thanks LOP, I've been hedged accordingly for the past 4 years.  They've trimmed my hedges but they're growing back.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:59 | 4448177 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

That's odd, all my ounces/grams are still very much intact.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:32 | 4448332 Colonel Klink
Colonel Klink's picture

Well I was referring as being measured in FED fiat toilet paper, which is mainly what most of the world accepts.  But you already knew that.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:38 | 4448081 Calculus99
Calculus99's picture

Wonder how long it will be before the paper wrapping around Belgium chocolates will be worth more than an American IOU (or a French, British, Spanish, Italian Japanese IOU etc)

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:41 | 4448092 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

what word describes fiat printing and buying back debt?? I am sure Ben said it would never happen at the FED never seems to need clarification as in what the meaning of is, is?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:41 | 4448093 GVB
GVB's picture

I didn't vote for that level of insanity..

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:42 | 4448094 RaceToTheBottom
RaceToTheBottom's picture

Gold purchases appear to be increasing and US Treasuries purchases appear to be decreasing......

connect the ................

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:42 | 4448097 fuu
fuu's picture

That's a lot of waffles.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:52 | 4448142 SAT 800
SAT 800's picture

Yes, it is.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:42 | 4448098 Kaiser Sousa
Kaiser Sousa's picture

"bye, bye Miss America Pie......"

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:42 | 4448101 Skin666
Skin666's picture



I did not see that one coming!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:44 | 4448105 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture





Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:53 | 4448151 SAT 800
SAT 800's picture

I think you should try the DeCaf, for awhile; it tastes alright, and you avoid the sudden mental storms.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:00 | 4448185 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

nah... than the voices take over and they tell me to do bad stuff...

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:06 | 4448212 pods
pods's picture

You have to seek some help man.  

Hang on, the dog is sayin somethin.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:14 | 4448860 SDShack
SDShack's picture

Belgium, the Mouse that Roared.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 16:11 | 4449390 resurger
resurger's picture

I thought the Fed came to the rescue lol

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:42 | 4448102 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture




that was the plan right?....

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:44 | 4448106 Duc888
Duc888's picture





"I didn't vote for that level of insanity.."


Actually, if you vote at all you consent to the rape in progress.

Political party A : Anally raped

Political party B: Orally raped.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:52 | 4448144 GVB
GVB's picture

Agree. But I told you I didn't vote

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:52 | 4448146 laomei
laomei's picture

Voting conveys a claim to legitimacy.  Stop clapping and tinkerbell will fade away and die.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:46 | 4448111 FieldingMellish
FieldingMellish's picture

<-- Mayo with your freedom fries.

<-- I'll buy your worthless paper if you buy mine. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:47 | 4448121 Burticus
Burticus's picture

Ah so!  Sum ting wong.  Wei too lo.  Ho lee fuk.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:48 | 4448128 starman
starman's picture

90% of the bank's are insolvent! They've been extenting on bad loans , then repackaging them  for another grade D investment !  The world is in debt of megalithic proportion s!



Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:49 | 4448131 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Eat you peas. Just make sure you leave one, so the shell game to continue. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:55 | 4448162 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Round and round she goes.... where is the debt bomb?  Nobody knows.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:17 | 4448581 forwardho
forwardho's picture

While we were asleep at the swich, minding our own lives, the debt bomb was slipped like a noose around our necks.

Take heart, death will be nearly instantanious.

Rock on Doc.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 11:58 | 4448174 wagthetails
wagthetails's picture

so the Fed is buying $60bn but the Chinese are selling $48bn.  I believe China just dropped a check mate.  If the Chinese increse sales, then the fed will have to increase buying to offset interest rate increases.  But all this does is allow China to sell all their Treasuries at high prices.   Or, the Fed continues to Taper and interest rates start to singificantly rise.

keep low rates and bail out china, or let rate rise and harm the economy.  bang up job guys. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:00 | 4448182 fonzannoon
fonzannoon's picture

The fed is tapering because the rest of the world, in aggregate, can't get enough UST's for themselves. That's all that happened here.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:59 | 4448499 RSloane
RSloane's picture

Pretty much, yes.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:42 | 4448723 Unprepared
Unprepared's picture

.. and can I posit this has less to do with coordinating to shore up treasuries market and more to do with demand for high-quality* repo'able/collaterable assets... just ask Basel

*don't shoot the messenger

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 15:42 | 4449271 fuu
fuu's picture

Starting today the Reverse Repo facility will increase rate to 4 basis points from 3.

Who are those counterparties again?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:04 | 4448198 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Keep your eyes on Japan and the ECB. The game keeps up until the printing press of last resort aka the FED has no other presses to outsource the job to.

WWIII commences once the Federal Government can't service debt and will default unless they give up power and control.

Power and control doesn't relinquish itself without a violent outburst in it's last gasps for life.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:36 | 4448364 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Disolution of the Euro if not the whole EU is probably going to be the trigger of the real collapse when all is said and done. What black swan event causes it, I don't know but if I was a betting man I'd put my chips on one of the former Iron Curtain states now part of EU/Nato as being a likely culprit that starts the chain reaction.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:57 | 4448785 ghostzapper
ghostzapper's picture

Certainly a logical way to look at this which is why one might consider abandoning that viewpoint.  The Fed is SAYING that they are tapering.  We have absolutely no idea if this is true in a literal sense.  They jawbone taper and jerk each other off (Yellen goes first of course) with CNBChitchatters and talk about how "everything is fine" and they can draw down QE.  Yet, behind the scenes lord only knows how many new scams are put into motion each month or quarter.  Globally the printfest is increasing and not decreasing.


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 14:26 | 4448928 SDShack
SDShack's picture

The entire bond market is distorted with the Fed only controling 1/3 of it. Imagine what will happen when the Fed, controls 51%. Bond Vigilantes neutralized, ZIRP forever, no threat of debt service collapse - Game over. That's their plan. Actually, this China sells, Belgium buys article proves it. The Fed, through their CB proxies around the world, already controls the bond market. Wake up. It's all just a paper shuffle to keep the flow going. All ponzis are dependent on flow. But when the Fed controls the printing press AND the bond market, the ponzi is self perpetuating. This will only collapse by revolution from the people, and the people are sheeple. This isn't going anywhere for years.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:01 | 4448184 Iambic PentaMaster
Iambic PentaMaster's picture

Nothing to see here, low-information types.

Move on and continue to ignore at your own peril.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:02 | 4448194 shankster
shankster's picture

How do you say 'we own you USA' in Chinese?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:10 | 4448233 fuu
fuu's picture


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:56 | 4448481 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Sum Ting Wong

Ho Lee Fuk

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:09 | 4448223 q99x2
q99x2's picture

No favors needed. The US, London and EU banksters are one Except for the physical location all national budgets are one. My FAFSA comes from Belgium and our taxes are paid to the Europe.

Our elected officials have committed treason.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:15 | 4448251 csmith
csmith's picture

Don't forget Kansas City...greatest SNL skit ever...


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:25 | 4448304 Fix-ItSilly
Fix-ItSilly's picture

What's the big deal? If China wants to diversify from their USD$ holdings, and procure some Euro exposure, wouldn't this be a natural trade that does not expose the ECB to yuan?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:27 | 4448314 Volaille de Bresse
Volaille de Bresse's picture

"One wonders what favors were (and are) being exchanged behind the scenes in order to preserve the semblance that "all is well"?"


It's not favors it's sexual blackmail : the whole EU staff is held on a leash with some sex scandals involving minors. Google "Regina Louf" to unveil a part of the story.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 19:51 | 4448461 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Looks like two old whores giving each other oral relief.

US promises EU no oil shortages due to Ukraine destabilization.

EU purchase UST and seals the deal. Short-term thinking as usual.

XXX000! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 19:50 | 4448627 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Award for best blackmailer across all genres in media goes to the United States of America!!!!!

Accepting the award for the USA will be the new Israeli troll chairing the FED Kabbalah, Janet "the non-gentile" Yellen!


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 17:02 | 4449641 PhilofOz
PhilofOz's picture

I've often thought this must be the case with half the US Senators and Congressmen the way they grovel up to Israel. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:39 | 4448382 the not so migh...
the not so mighty maximiza's picture

It is good to know Belgium will buy all of it when China dumps all of it. 

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:50 | 4448451 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Is it a trend? January?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:45 | 4448424 elwind45
elwind45's picture

The fed is buying its own debt? The fed is buying treasury debt with income freely available from productive carbon based lifeforms. The idea that it is buying its own debt is simplistic. The income it generates by throwing good money after bad is the reason everything is good and not bad? In the future as EM currencies collapse and real rates collapse you will find comfort in treasuries at the expense of your way over valued stacks of ancient PM?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:48 | 4448433 Peter Pan
Peter Pan's picture

Termites eat what they can but when the structure is about to come down, they hold hands for dear life.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:47 | 4448435 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

US & NATO vs. Russia & China tag-team wrestling.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:51 | 4448454 Peter Pan
Peter Pan's picture

Tot for tat or perhaps a warning shot. Or perhaps a sign forthe rest of us that we are getting clser to the drain hole.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:30 | 4448652 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

The main event cannot hide behind the preliminary PROXY matches for much longer.

I hate opening acts! Burn the Christians already! I want the GLADIATORS!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:50 | 4448452 MFLTucson
MFLTucson's picture

The fraud never ends with this trash in the Federal Reserve and these auctions.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:55 | 4448459 Fred123
Fred123's picture

China needs the money to prop up their banking sector which is on the verge of collapse. So instead of the USD collapsing we may see the Chinese Yuan take a huge dump. This may be an event that is talked about for

You want to see a real panic? Wait until a Chinaman thinks his money is gonna be stolen by a bank......these people will go insane.....

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:00 | 4448504 Mark123
Mark123's picture

Bingo!  And guess who they will blame?

The west.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:49 | 4448757 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

JP Morgan is acting like a NGO in China. Hire the Chinese and hope their greed and laziness will keep them in check.


I wouldn't call that a very good strategy. Promise China the world and they may want to collect.


Sounds treasonous to offer China my won tons.



Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:55 | 4448465 aardvarkk
aardvarkk's picture

I wonder how much of Europe's sudden willingness to hold US paper is related to the new MyRA announcement, and to the suspicion (or knowledge) that it will be foisted on lots of people whether they want it or not?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:54 | 4448466 giorgioorwell
giorgioorwell's picture

Yawn, Selling 3% of their holding is hardly headline worthy ZH.  Wake me when it's 10% or more

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:55 | 4448473 BrigstockBoy
BrigstockBoy's picture

Fuck the EU, right?

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:56 | 4448477 Mitch Comestein
Mitch Comestein's picture

That probably marks the intermediate bottom!!!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:57 | 4448491 elwind45
elwind45's picture

Once governments decide that throwing money at a problem isn't working they soon run out of ideas except "let the free market decide"! Without intervening by applying more capital the free market is left to be free to market valuables? As the price of valuables collapse more are offered at lower prices and the past excess liquidity is absorbed. Money being free of the rock adds instant inflation which at this point is badly needed. Money liberated from the rock reinflates the world!

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:58 | 4448495 Mark123
Mark123's picture

There is only one central bank in the world....USA, Europe, Japan are just regional offices.  Big bankers have always had one goal...enslave the people so you can control the game.  I think they are doing a swell job for themselves.

My only interest is what will happen when they call the loans to China.  From what I see, the ruling class in China has been bought off and is merrily living the good life around the world buying the fanciest, most expensive trinkets available.  When the bankers pull the plug on that game it will get ever so interesting....


Tue, 02/18/2014 - 12:58 | 4448497 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

I guess we know why it got a bit quiet over those new territory demands by China.

The Golden Rule: Those with the gold make the rules. Those that need to beg are dead.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:39 | 4448706 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Obozo is too busy posing for a selfie in Michael's, I mean Michelle's $12,000 dress.

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 13:48 | 4448751 1835jackson
1835jackson's picture

Out there in the vast ignorance of the world it festers and spreads. A shadow that grows in the dark. A sleepless malice as black as the on coming wall of night. So it ever was, so will it always be. IN TIME ALL FOUL THINGS COME FORTH.

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