ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Oct 17 01:30

BNZ lets customers open account with selfie-video

In a New Zealand first for banking, BNZ customers will be able to sign up for a personal account by way of a selfie video.

The new sign-up process, announced today by BNZ, will eliminate the need for customers to visit a branch at all.

Howard Silby, BNZ's chief operating officer for customer, products and services, said customers have been asking for a faster and simpler process.

"We're bringing this process completely into the digital age, giving more people more options, and making it faster and simpler, which is what customers tell us they're after," Silby said.

"All you need is your New Zealand passport and a smartphone, tablet or PC with a camera.

Oct 16 18:26

Is A Year-End Rally Still Possible?

Oct 16 17:24

NZ heading for gas supply gap, warns industry executive

New Zealand is heading into a gas supply gap and will need a new discovery to arrest the production decline it is on now, MPs heard yesterday.

The country has just seven years' firm supply, and production is forecast to start falling away from 2021, according to Patrick Teagle, a New Zealand-based executive for Austrian oil and gas company OMV. Teagle was talking to Parliament's environment select committee.

Government MPs didn't appreciate being told the ban would increase emissions rather than reduce them, that the ban had already halted some investment, and that reduced domestic gas supplies would increase electricity costs for all consumers and sacrifice opportunities to reduce coal use and replace higher-emitting imports – like fertiliser – with lower-emission local production.

Oct 16 17:17

Owner of $24m Waiheke vineyard estate receives pre-auction offer, but holds out

*Greed has NOTHING to do with it...*

The owner of a Waiheke Island vineyard and home valued at $24 million has received an offer before Friday's on-site midday auction - but he remains determined to test the market by still holding the event.

David Parkinson of Te Rere Cove said this morning: "We have an offer subject to funds coming into New Zealand. However, we obviously will not be signing that until proof that the funds are cleared."

One of New Zealand's most expensive properties will still go to auction in two days' time, he said.

Oct 16 15:42

Trump: My Biggest Threat Is The Fed

“My biggest threat is the Fed,” Trump said on Tuesday during an interview with FOX Business’ Trish Regan. “Because the Fed is raising rates too fast, and it’s too independent," he complained.

Oct 16 15:37

Visualizing Minimum Wage in the United States

Oct 16 14:33

US Issues Sanctions Targeting 20 Iranian Entities, Including 4 Banks

Earlier reports stated that on November 4 a new wave of US sanctions will directly hit Iran's oil exports and banking operations and is expected to disconnect the Middle East state from international financial channels.

The US Treasury announced Tuesday that twenty entities, including four banks, will be targeted by new Iran's sanctions.

"This Iran-based network is known as Bonyad Taavon Basij, which is translated as Basij Cooperative Foundation, and is comprised of at least 20 corporations and financial institutions," the release said.

Oct 16 14:29

World Finance Leaders Scramble For A Solution To Escalating Trade War, Rising Rates

The main takeaway from the IMF and World Bank Group annual meeting in Bali, which hosted financial ministers and central bank governors from around the world this weekend, was that global trade tensions were having a profound effect on global growth and need to be solved.

Most of the participants - save for China and Mexico - seemed united and in agreement that trade talks have to continue. Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda stated that it was essential to have dialogue on trade while at the same time, the president of Brazil's central bank, Ilan Goldfajn, noted that the trade wars were one of the biggest threats to emerging markets. Indonesia's president Jokowi Widodo said starkly that "winter is coming" for the global economy if there is no solution on trade.

Oct 16 12:56

US weapons sales surge by one-third under Trump’s policies

The United States has sold over $55 billion of weapons during the 2018 fiscal year, a sharp year-on-year increase in the wake of President Donald Trump’s push to encourage more US arms sales.

That’s 33 percent more than fiscal year 2017, Trump’s first year in office, when the Pentagon contractors managed to sell almost $42 billion in weapons and military services around the globe, according to the latest report by the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency.

According ding to the report, the Pentagon funded $4.42 billion of the 2018 foreign purchases while an additional $3.52 billion in arms sales was funded by the State Department. The buyers paid for the rest of the sales themselves.

The deals included the sales of a significant number of aircraft and equipment, including Boeing deals to sell surveillance aircraft in Asia and Europe.

Oct 16 11:44

Interesting Data On Buybacks

Oct 16 11:23

Welcome to the G-20 from Hell

The G-20 in Buenos Aires on November 30 could set the world on fire – perhaps literally. Let’s start with the US-China trade war. Washington won’t even start discussing trade with China at the G-20 unless Beijing comes up with a quite detailed list of potential concessions.

The word from Chinese negotiators is not at all bleak. Some sort of agreement could be reached on about a third of US demands. Debate on another third could ensue. But the last third is absolutely off-limits – due to Chinese national security imperatives, such as refusing to allow the opening of the domestic cloud computing market to foreign competition.

Oct 16 10:48

Poland Raises Gold Holdings to Record High in September – IMF

Poland raised its gold holdings to the highest in at least 35 years, data from the International Monetary Fund showed on Monday.

The country increased its holdings by 4.4 tonnes from August to about 117 tonnes in September, a record, according to data going back to January 1983.

Oct 16 10:43

Anatomy Of A Global Rescue

Oct 16 09:19

Bezos says Amazon will work with DoD; says US in ‘big trouble’ without ‘big tech’ companies

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has distinguished his company from other big tech firms in declaring its willingness to work with the United States Department of Defense.

“If big tech companies are going to turn their back on the US Department of Defense, this country is going to be in trouble,” Bezos cautioned in San Francisco Monday at an event celebrating the 25th anniversary of the tech magazine Wired.

Amazon is bidding for a 10-year contract with the Defense Department known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure project, JEDI, to offer cloud computing services worth up to $10 billion.

“We are going to continue to support the DoD, and I think we should,” Bezos said.

Oct 16 09:11

Natural gas futures SOAR: Supplies BELOW average levels as COLD SNAP to SWEEP across US

NATURAL gas futures soared on Monday as a bitter snap of below-average cold weather was forecast to sweep the United States. Fears are now growing that the US is “starting off the winter with a big hole in our supply” as soaring demand comes at a time when supplies are below the five-year average levels.

Oct 16 08:57

Hungary raises gold reserves tenfold on safety concerns

Hungary’s central bank has announced the country has boosted its gold reserves tenfold to 31.5 tons. The regulator says it wants to improve the security of the nation’s wealth and to reduce risks.

Oct 16 08:07

""Makets"" Recover...In Overnight Session

Oct 16 07:44

How many households qualify as middle class?

Oct 16 04:24

Overview of markets, looks interesting

Oct 15 16:38

Dow 40,000 After “Large Panic Event?”

Oct 15 15:57

How Many Households Qualify as Middle Class?

Oct 15 12:17

On US Naval Blockades and a Hard Days War. Economic Warfare against Russia is not Working

The blockade’s objective was to force the USSR to withdraw nuclear weapons from Cuba that it had placed there in order to guarantee Cuba’s security from American attack. Fortunately the crisis ended a few days later with the missiles being withdrawn in exchange for the US withdrawing similar missiles from bases in Turkey that threatened the USSR, and a US pledge not to invade Cuba. The blockade proved to be not only a dangerous provocation but also a humiliating fiasco for the US. A year later President Kenned was assassinated.

But today the US leadership is threatening another blockade, this time of Russia, as well as threatening pre-emptive strikes to neutralise Russian cruise missiles, not located in Cuba, but in Russia itself. And the same fleet that conducted the Cuban blockade, that took part in the invasion of Grenada in 1983, the 2nd Fleet, has once again been reactivated with all the ships necessary to attempt just such a blockade.

Oct 15 11:11

THE PENTAGON’S PUSH TO PROGRAM SOLDIERS’ BRAINS

The Biological Technologies Office, created in 2014, is the newest of DARPA’s six main divisions. This is the office headed by Justin Sanchez. One purpose of the office is to “restore and maintain warfighter abilities” by various means, including many that emphasize neurotechnology—applying engineering principles to the biology of the nervous system. For instance, the Restoring Active Memory program develops neuroprosthetics—tiny electronic components implanted in brain tissue—that aim to alter memory formation so as to counteract traumatic brain injury. Does DARPA also run secret biological programs? In the past, the Department of Defense has done such things. It has conducted tests on human subjects that were questionable, unethical, or, many have argued, illegal. The Big Boy protocol, for example, compared radiation exposure of sailors who worked above and below deck on a battleship, never informing the sailors that they were part of an experiment.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF DARPA actually achieves these goals, how will it not be sought to "pacify" an angry public, sick and tired of wars, manipulated events and information, and the offshoring/outsourcing of American jobs, all created in order that the monied become even more wealthy?!?

We cannot forget that there is a very dark, ethical "underbelly" of this kind of research, and the implications may well lead to a very dystopian future for all citizens of this country.

Oct 15 10:49

Yemen on brink of 'world's worst famine in 100 years' if war continues

UN warns that famine could overwhelm country in next three months, with 13 million people at risk of starvation.

If war continues, famine could engulf the country in the next three months, with 12 to 13 million civilians at risk of starvation, according to Lise Grande, the agency’s humanitarian coordinator for Yemen.

She told the BBC: “I think many of us felt as we went into the 21st century that it was unthinkable that we could see a famine like we saw in Ethiopia, that we saw in Bengal, that we saw in parts of the Soviet Union – that was just unacceptable.

“Many of us had the confidence that would never happen again and yet the reality is that in Yemen that is precisely what we are looking at.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Ms. Grande is obviously naive enough to believe that the war will stop, just upon the wails and screams of various human rights organisations and NGOs around the world.

What she refuses to understand, is that this is precisely the outcome the Butcher of Yemen (aka, Prince Mohammed bin Salman) wishes to see happen.

I think of another way of putting it is "Victory by Attrition", which means the Butcher doesn't care HOW the people of Yemen die, he just wants them to die, either by starvation; direct bombing runs; destroying the water infrastructure; and poisoning Yemeni people with potentially weaponized cholera.

And the Unhinged, Surveilled State of Amerika, lead by its Merchant of Death in Chief, is doing everything it can do, particularly selling him arms with which to massacre as many children, women, and medically fragile elderly as possible.

THIS, friends, is why the "Khasshogi Incident" will be forgotten; anything which gets in the way of selling American weapons will be obliviated, as I believe you will see in the coming days, possibly as soon as the end of the week.

That's why Pompeo is headed Riyadh this week, President Trump says Mike Pompeo going to Saudi Arabia this Week to "stategize conformities" as to how this assassination will be spun, and to not let one scintilla of logic, or real evidence, dare to rear its ugly head, to combat the soon to be well-crafted spinning of this story.

Oct 15 10:24

Violence, Public Anger Erupts In China As Home Prices Slide

Naturally, as long as the housing bubble keeps inflating and prices keep rising, there is nothing to worry about as the population will keep spending money buoyed by illusory wealth appreciation. It is when housing starts to drop that Beijing begins to panic.

Fast forward to today, when Beijing may be starting to sweat because whereas Chinese property developers usually count on September and October to be their “gold and silver” months for sales, this year has turned out to be different. As the SCMP reports, not only were sales figures grim for September, but the seven-day national holiday last week also brought at least two "fangnao" incidents – when angry, and often violent, homeowners protest against price cuts offered by developers to new buyers.

Oct 15 10:24

Saudi Stocks Crash Most Since 2016 As Riyadh Threatens US With "Very Strong" Retaliation

Saudi Arabia warned on Sunday it would respond to any "threats" against it as its stock market crashed the most since 2016 after President Trump's warning of "severe punishment" over the disappearance of Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi.

On Saturday, Trump said the U.S. could take “very, very powerful, very strong, strong measures” against the country if its leaders are found responsible for the Saudi citizen’s fate. The kingdom, which denies its involvement in Khashoggi’s disappearance, announced it would retaliate against any punitive measures with an even “stronger” response, the Saudi Press Agency reported, citing an official it didn’t identify.

"The kingdom affirms its total rejection of any threats and attempts to undermine it, whether through economic sanctions, political pressure or repeating false accusations," the kingdom's statement said. "The kingdom also affirms that if it is (targeted by) any action, it will respond with greater action."

Oct 15 10:23

‘Shaking the Tree’: Trump Call to Quit WTO a Blessing in Disguise Says Bloc Head

US President Donald Trump claims the World Trade Organization (WTO) is biased toward China, resulting in soul searching by member states to remake the bloc’s mandate and methods.

Trump has long claimed that the World Trade Organization (WTO), the intergovernmental body that regulates international trade, favors China, since the country joined the organization in 2001.

"If they don't shape up, I would withdraw from the WTO," Trump said in an August 30 interview with Bloomberg. It's not clear what topic under discussion led Trump to make the remark.

Oct 15 10:22

Iran Found New Partners for Oil Exports Despite US Sanctions - Vice-President

Iran has explored multiple ways to sidestep US sanctions after Washington vowed to bring the country's oil exports down "to zero" and punish any country that continues to buy oil from the Islamic Republic.

Tehran has found new partners ready to buy Iranian crude oil in spite of the impending reinstatement of US energy sanctions next month, Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri said, according to the IRIB broadcaster.

"While some countries have stopped buying oil from Iran, we have found new partners. Furthermore, we have engaged in talks with our existing partners," Jahangiri said. According to the official, even those countries which have stopped imports are looking for workarounds which would allow them to continue to import energy indirectly.

Oct 15 09:58

Why Can't It Work "This Time?"

Oct 15 09:38

Oil Jumps After Saudi Official Floats "Trial Balloon" Op-Ed Envisioning "Oil Weapon" Devastation

WTI Crude prices are up around 2% in the early Sunday trading after Saudi Arabia appears to be now attempting to go on the offensive and is lashing out as it does damage control in the aftermath of journalist Jamal Khashoggi's alleged murder inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul nearly two weeks ago.

What likely sparked the risk premium was the fact that Turki Al Dakhil, who heads the Saudi state-owned Arabiya news network, wrote in an article that U.S. sanctions against Saudi Arabia could wreak havoc on the global economy by taking oil prices to $200 a barrel and more. Faisal bin Farhan, a senior adviser to the Saudi embassy in Washington, said on Twitter that these comments didn’t represent the Saudi leadership.

Oct 15 08:19

Why It’s Worth Holding Gold Bullion in Your Portfolio

“We have interest rates going up at a clip that’s much faster than certainly a lot of people, including myself, would have anticipated. I think the Fed is out of control.”

Central banks are independent, in theory. But that won’t stop the president of the US from giving his full and frank opinion on their performance.

Oct 15 07:53

Kenyans Say Chinese Investment Brings Racism and Discrimination

Before last year, Richard Ochieng’, 26, could not recall experiencing racism firsthand.

Not while growing up as an orphan in his village near Lake Victoria where everybody was, like him, black. Not while studying at a university in another part of Kenya. Not until his job search led him to Ruiru, a fast-growing settlement at the edge of the capital, Nairobi, where Mr. Ochieng’ found work at a Chinese motorcycle company that had just expanded to Kenya.

But then his new boss, a Chinese man his own age, started calling him a monkey.

It happened when the two were on a sales trip and spotted a troop of baboons on the roadside, he said.

“‘Your brothers,’” he said his boss exclaimed, urging Mr. Ochieng’ to share some bananas with the primates.

Oct 15 07:26

Britain's £406bn debt timebomb: FTSE big guns are sitting on DOUBLE their debt in the run-up to the financial crisis, sparking bond fears

Britain's biggest companies are sitting on a debt 'timebomb' of £406billion – almost double the amount held in the run-up to the financial crisis a decade ago.

Analysis by The Mail on Sunday found debt at companies in the FTSE 100 index of Britain's leading firms, which stood at £236.4 billion in 2008, has risen to extraordinary levels thanks to years of easy credit and low interest rates.

City experts warned that the debt binge could come back to haunt firms after stock markets around the world tumbled last week amid concerns that rising US interest rates will drive up the cost of borrowing and potentially trigger a wave of defaults.

Oct 14 19:02

Kiss Idaho Goodbye: Another Major Land Takeover

Oct 14 08:18

CONGRESS MEMBERS URGE TRUMP TO MEDDLE IN HUNGARY'S ELECTIONS

One of the loudest voices screaming "Russia is meddling in our democracy!" has been Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH). Last year she signed a letter to the Speaker of the House demanding that Homeland Security and the FBI brief Congress on "the Russian attack on 21 states' voting systems" (a charge since disproven). The letter complained that "when a sovereign nation attempts to meddle in our elections, it is an attack on our country."

To be fair, it is hard to disagree with Rep. Kaptur and her colleagues on that final point. No one wants a foreign country meddling in their elections, hacking their ballot machines, funding opposition parties, manipulating the media in favor of one side, etc.

But here's the rub: Rep. Kaptur has just sent a letter to the State Department demanding that the United States government commit all of the above violations against NATO partner country Hungary!

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Absoflippinglutely unbelievable, but perfectly predictable from Congressional Representatives.

What amazes me, is how do these people manage to get through life so absolutely logic-free?!?

Oct 14 08:07

Odd Correlation Betweeen JPY And SPY

Oct 14 07:52

IMF Warns Their Forecast Was Wrong

Oct 14 07:43

$21 Trillion in Unaccounted-for Government Spending from 1998 to 2015

Two federal government agencies, the Department of Defense and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), may have accumulated as much as $21 trillion in undocumented expenses between 1998 and 2015. Independent news sources, including RT and USAWatchdog, reported this finding based on an investigation conducted by Mark Skidmore, a professor of economics at Michigan State University. Skidmore began to research the alleged irregularities in DoD and HUD spending after hearing Catherine Austin Fitts, who was assistant secretary of HUD during the George H. W. Bush administration, say that the Department of Defense's Office of Inspector General (OIG) had found $6.5 trillion worth of military spending that the Department of Defense could not account for.

Oct 14 07:39

MSU SCHOLARS FIND $21 TRILLION IN UNAUTHORIZED GOVERNMENT SPENDING

A Michigan State University economist, working with graduate students and a former government official, found $21 trillion in unauthorized spending in the departments of Defense and Housing and Urban Development for the years 1998-2015. The work of Mark Skidmore and his team, which included digging into government websites and repeated queries to U.S. agencies that went unanswered, coincided with the Office of Inspector General, at one point, disabling the links to all key documents showing the unsupported spending. (Luckily, the researchers downloaded and stored the documents.) ... Skidmore got involved last spring when he heard Catherine Austin Fitts, former assistant secretary of Housing and Urban Development, refer to a report which indicated the Army had $6.5 trillion in unsupported adjustments, or spending, in fiscal 2015.

Oct 13 18:32

Inequality in Silicon Valley is getting worse: Wages are down for everyone but the top 10 percent

In America’s tech capital, the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.

Oct 13 16:44

Pastor Brunson Met With Trump At The White House After Spending Two Years Detained In Turkey

“He is a great Christian who has been through such a tough experience,” Trump tweeted Saturday.

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