Turning over new leaves and all that stuff is great if you believe that your true nature can be changed. But, leopards rarely change their spots and Iranian spots are just as indelible as any others in the world.
Hopefully Great Britain doesn't get the idea of finally reclaiming its rebellious colonies lost over two hundred years ago, because the US certainly is making it easy. As part of the numerous non-essential services shut down in the current government funding crisis, Foreign Policy reports that the Air Force's Air Combat Command (ACC) - home to the service's fighter jets, B-1 bombers and most of its drones and spyplanes -- has grounded squadrons that are not set to deploy abroad after January. "...Only fighters based at Mountain Home flying this fall are the F-15SGs of the Singaporean air force that are permanently stationed there. Interestingly, German and Canadian air force jets are also flying out of the Idaho base on training deployments of their own.
BitCoin Plunges Following US Government Seizure Of Silk Road Website, "Dread Pirate Roberts" In CustodySubmitted by Tyler Durden on 10/02/2013 13:38 -0400
Earlier today, one of the most popular websites that use and promote the use of BitCoin, Silk Road, was shut down by the US government. As Reuters reports, U.S. law enforcement authorities raided an Internet site that served as a marketplace for illegal drugs, including heroin and cocaine, and arrested its owner, the Federal Bureau of Investigation said on Wednesday. The FBI arrested Ross William Ulbricht, known as "Dread Pirate Roberts," in San Francisco on Tuesday, according to court filings. Federal prosecutors charged Ulbricht with one count each of narcotics trafficking conspiracy, computer hacking conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy, according to a court filing. Anyone visiting the site would be greeted with the following "game over" screen.
While over 800,000 furloughed government workers took the bulk of today's "shutdown" hit (even if that means record high traffic and ad revenues for the world's porn websites) in the form of compensation (that is merely delayed) one of the parties impacted by the first government shutdown in 17 years was none other than the Ku Klux Klan. Reuters reports that a KKK rally was one of the first casualties of the U.S. government shutdown on Tuesday when National Parks officials told the white supremacist group the event would have to be canceled. The KKK had been granted a permit for what it dubbed a First Amendment demonstration on Saturday at Gettysburg National Military Park, but park officials said it could not take place because all National Parks have been closed. "Because of the federal government shutdown, Gettysburg National Military Park has rescinded all permits for special events, including the October 5 First Amendment demonstration," the park said in a statement.
If there is one day the Fed's trading desk actually did want futures lower, if only for purely optical purposes and to at least suggest that the government, and not the Fed, is still in charge of the US, it is the day when the US government - for the first time in 17 years - has shut down. They certainly did not want the S&P to be up nearly 0.5% mere hours after Congress and the presidency confirmed to the world that in a world in which "the Chairman gets to work", a functioning government is completely irrelevant. Yet this is precisely what is going on. What is making matters worse is that on the other side of the world, Japan also finally announced the well-telegraphed sales tax increase to8%, offset by a JPY5 trillion yen "stimulus" which however Japan said, much to the Chagrin of Mrs. Watanabe and a 100 pip overnight plunge in the USDJPY, would be funded not with more new bond issuance (and thus without new "wealth effect" generating monetization). It is unclear just how it will be funded but since increasingly more global fiscal and monetary policy is based on science fiction we know better than to ask.
Even though there is no technical link between the two main fiscal issues – the continuing resolution (CR) and the debt ceiling bill - there is a link in the minds of market participants because prompt resolution of the CR could spell a favorable outcome for the debt limit. On the other hand, a government shutdown tonight could lead the market to be more pessimistic on the chances of a debt default. As BofAML notes, the link between the two issues is fairly complex but the shutdown battle is just the beginning - and, as the suspect "the fight could get ugly."
In the upcoming week markets will continue to focus on these fiscal issues in the US, now that a temporary Government shutdown past Tuesday is assured. Still on the fiscal side but outside the US, look forward to Prime Minister Abe announcing his final decision on the VAT hike as well as unveiling a widely anticipated economic stimulus package. Finally, fiscal policy also played a role in the Italian political instability with four ministers resigning from the coalition Government. The backdrop to these events is a rapid deterioration of the political climate after former PM Berlusconi was convicted of tax evasion by a High Court.
Back in August, just after the false flag chemical weapon attack in Syria, we showed that despite all the posturing by the Obama administration (and, of course, France's belligerent, socialist leader Francois Hollande), the nation behind the entire Syrian campaign was not one of the "democratic", Western nations but none other than close neighbor Saudi Arabia, and the brain orchestrating every move of the western puppets was one Bandar bin Sultan, the nation's influential intelligence chief. We also explained the plethora of geopolitical and mostly energy-related issues that Saudi and Qatar had at stake, which they were eager to launch a regional war over, just to promote their particular set of selfish interests. A month later, in clear confirmation that this was precisely the case, the WSJ reported that the recent overtures by Obama, brilliantly checkmated by Putin, to push for a peaceful resolution with not only Syria, but suddenly Iran as well, has managed to infuriate Saudi Arabia: traditionally one of the US' closest allies in the region and the key source of crude oil to the western world.
Italian bank holdings of Italian debt: €400 billion, an all time high. Oops.
I have never been fashionable enough to conjure up surely one of the silliest startup ideas with, bar none, the worst name of all time: Fashism. I only know of this site because I read about its demise yesterday. Evidently Ashton Kutcher (who, for reasons wholly alien to me, is heralded as some kind of tech-savant investing genius) put $1 million into this dog.
While it is not entirely accurate to blame the ignominious downfall of RIMM BlackBerry on current CEO Thorsten Heins, who only took over from Co-CEOs Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsille in early 2012 at a time when the company's decline into irrelevance was already in progress, it is safe to say that the amount of stockholder value destruction under Heins' watch has been unprecedented. As such, one would imagine that the compensation for Heins is "equitable" to his value created for the company and its shareholders, i.e. zero. One would be wrong: as it turns out, and as Reuters reports, in the case of an "exit" event, such as the (faux) $4.7 billion LBO by FairFax Holdings at a price that is just shy of it decade (and longer) lows Heins will profit handsomely, and certainly make far more money than anyone who was long BBRY under his watch. Because the golden parachute that awaits the German, is valued at a whopping $55 million: an amount he will pocket no matter how said exit is achieved, and at what price (or rather cost) to shareholders.
‘Tapering’ may be put off indefinitely due to the very fragile state of the massively indebted U.S. economy. This means that interest rates must be kept low for as long as possible, leading to money printing and electronic money creation on a scale never before seen in history.
This will inevitably lead to higher gold prices - the question is when rather than if.
The last time the State Department issued a comparable worldwide terror alert, the majority of US embassies in the Muslim world were promptly evacuated and a few weeks later the Syrian false flag affair was unleashed upon the world. One wonders just what provocation John Kerry has in mind this time.
STATE DEPT ISSUES NEW WORLWIDE CAUTION ON TERRORIST THREATS; STATE DEPT DETAILS POSSIBLE THREATS IN EUROPE, ASIA, AFRICA
At least the evil terrorizers have not infiltrated the Arctic circle yet. As for the always convenient scapegoat:
STATE DEPT SAYS AL-QAEDA PLOTTING IN MULTIPLE REGIONS
They sure are: mostly in Syria, but luckily they are now armed with US weapons.
- Derivatives Broker 1: Make 6m go lower! They r going up. [Senior yen trader] will buy you a ferrari next yr if you move 3m up and no change 6m (February 29, 2008, via text message to personal mobile phone)
- Yen Desk Head: Lord Baliff, I would suggest a lunch over golden week. Monday or Tuesday if you are around. *** As for kick backs etc we can discuss that at lunch and I will speak to [Senior Yen Trader] about it next time he comes up for a chat.
Various Greek leaders have proclaimed the worst over for the desperately troubled nation. The basis for that optimism - a primary surplus - however is being brought into doubt by none other than the Troika (the overseer of the bailouts). As ekatherimini reports, the troika has doubts about Greek projections for a primary surplus this year and next and has begun the process of discussing with Athens the contents of the 2014 budget. Skeptical of Greek projections of a 1.5% of GDP primary surplus this year, it is also ironic that the Greek leaders themselves are downplaying the size of the surplus for fear that handouts will sour. All-in-all, it seems, Greek data (in light of the extreme unemployment) is anything but trustworthy - especially in light of further doubts over the effectiveness of the unified property tax.