ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

May 29 12:17

Huawei Asks US Court To Declare 'National Security' Ban Unconstitutional

It's a testament to the American legal system that even companies like Huawei, which built an empire on stolen technology and shady anti-competitive practices, have a right to seek redress of grievances in US courts.

The Chinese telecoms firm on Wednesday filed a motion in a Texas court seeking a summary judgment on the constitutionality of the Trump Administration's decision to prohibit US companies and government agencies from using Huawei equipment due to 'national security' concerns. The motion is the latest development in a lawsuit that Huawei first filed back in March challenging Section 889 of the National Defence Authorisation Act (NDAA) - signed into law back in August - which barred federal agencies and their contractors from buying Huawei equipment.

That prohibition has since been expanded by executive order to cover most American companies.

May 29 12:17

US Threatens Europe With "Loss Of Access To US Financial System" Over SWIFT-Evading Iran SPV

It's going from bad to worse for Europe, whose currency had just hit session lows after Brussels confirmed that Italy faces a massive fine over its debt, when the Euro was hit with a double whammy after Bloomberg reported that the Trump administration is escalating its battle with "European allies" over the fate of the Iran nuclear accord, and is "threatening penalties against the financial body created by Germany, the U.K. and France to shield trade with the Islamic Republic from U.S. sanctions."

According to Bloomberg, the Treasury Department’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, Sigal Mandelker, sent a letter on May 7 warning that Instex, the European SPV to sustain trade with Tehran, and anyone associated with it could be barred from the U.S. financial system if it goes into effect.

May 29 11:21

In Gold We Trust 2019 – Gold in the Age of Eroding Trust

In Gold We Trust 2019 –The Annual Gold Report from Incrementum is Here

We are happy to report that the new In Gold We Trust Report (2019) has been released today and the download link can be found at the end of this post.

Ronnie Stoeferle and Mark Valek of Incrementum and numerous guest authors once again bring you what has become the reference work for anyone interested in the gold market.

They are honoured that some of the thought leaders of the gold market read and support their our annual In Gold we Trust report! #IGWT19

May 29 10:57

After Destroying Brick and Mortars, Amazon Reportedly Planning to Cut Ties With Thousands of Small Vendors

Amazon has long touted its relationships with the small businesses who sell on its platform as helping them “reach hundreds of millions of customers around the world.” But Bloomberg reported on Tuesday that the e-commerce giant is about to cease bulk ordering for “thousands of mostly smaller suppliers,” which could have a devastating effect for those mom-and-pop operations. Amazon, however, disputes the report.

“We informed Bloomberg prior to publication of their article that their sources and story are wrong,” and Amazon spokesperson told Gizmodo in a statement by email. “We review our selling partner relationships on an individual basis as part of our normal course of business and any speculation of a large scale reduction of vendors is incorrect. Like any business, we make changes when we see an opportunity to provide customers with improved selection, value and convenience, and we do this thoughtfully and considerately on a case-by-case basis.”

May 29 10:53

Americans’ life savings disappear from Mexican Monex bank

Monex Casa del Bolsa, aka Holding Monex, is a Mexican financial institution founded in 1985 which is one of the world’s largest providers of commercial foreign exchange.

On its website, Monex says it engages in both corporate and private banking, and boasts that it is "an institution formed by leading companies in financial and payment businesses, that provide services and specialized products in the national and international market in an innovative manner and with the highest ethical and quality standards."

With $5.2 billion in assets and operations in the U.S., Monex Casa del Bolsaalso provides banking services to foreigners visiting or doing business in Mexico, as well as many American expatriots living in Mexico. Mostly retirees, they have to navigate a society with fewer legal and financial protections than they’d get in the U.S.

Those Americans, however, recently discovered that the money in their Monex bank accounts has disappeared.

May 29 09:31

Gold and Silver Could See Sparks This Summer

May 29 06:29

Nuclear Power Dying A Slow Death

May 28 16:52

RBNZ appoints three independent experts to review bank capital proposals

The Reserve Bank has appointed three external experts to independently review the analysis and advice underpinning its bank capital proposals.

The three experts are James Cummings, a senior lecturer in finance at Macquarie University, Professor Ross Levine, chair of banking and finance at the Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley, and David Miles, Professor of Financial Economics at Imperial College London.

Cummings previously worked for the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority between 2009 and 2013, Levine has previously worked at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the World Bank, and Miles was a member of the Bank of England's monetary policy committee from May 2009 through September 2015.

*The Banks here don't like the fact that they need to hold more capital in case of a collapse & it may eat into their margins as they will have to borrow at higher rates & then less people will borrow hurting their profits.*

May 28 16:44

NZ Reserve Bank worried about high household and dairy farm debt levels

Debt levels in the household and dairy sectors are high and are leaving borrowers and lenders exposed to unanticipated events, the Reserve Bank says.

The central bank released its six-monthly report on Financial Stability this morning and said while the New Zealand financial system remains resilient to economic risks it still had concerns.

"Financial system risks remain elevated, and ongoing effort is necessary to bolster system soundness and efficiency," Reserve Bank governor Adrian Orr said in a statement.

Orr pointed to concerns on the domestic front over household and dairy sector debt.

The report shows Orr is less concerned about housing loans but is still fretting about a third of dairy debt and is also flagging the rapid growth in lending to the horticulture sector.

May 28 11:01

Which U.S. States Have The Worst Roads?

May 28 10:37

EU election results show people are ‘fed up with fake democracy’

Anti-establishment forces had major gains in the EU elections because voters are tired of parties refusing to challenge Brussels, analysts told RT, saying the results also show that migration is still a top issue.
Euroskeptic parties made considerable gains in the European Parliament elections, leaving the bloc’s establishment parties badly battered and searching for answers. Ultimately, analysts told RT, it illustrates how Europeans have run out of patience for politics as usual.

In the past, whenever the EU found itself in trouble, Brussels would always remedy the crisis by calling for more European integration, Dr. Werner Patzelt, a political science professor at the Technical University of Dresden, noted. And until now, Brussels always got its way.

“This time it was different,” Patzelt told RT.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a turning point for the EU; I hope their leadership absorbs the true meaning of this vote.

May 28 10:27

"A Big Wake Up Call": Chinese Bond Market Roiled By First Ever Bank Failure

Late last Friday, we reported that several hours after the market close, China's financial regulator and central bank made a shocking announcement: for the first time in nearly 30 year, China would take control of a bank, in this case the troubled inner Mongolia-based Baoshang Bank, due to the serious credit risks it poses.

The news which highlights the potential for increased stress at regional lenders that piled into off-book financing in recent years, was strategically timed to hit ahead of the weekend, and with the market closed, it avoided an immediate panic selling waterfall. However, the fact that in China banks are now fair game for failure, and will soon join the record surge in Chinese corporate defaults...

May 28 10:05

The Best Way To Invest In Gold

Today we’re talking gold.

I’m not going to make projections about the price – whether it’s going to go up or down.

Instead we’re going to look at the cost of buying and selling gold.

How to buy gold on the cheap

What’s the easiest, cheapest way to buy gold?

Most would say via one of the gold exchange-traded funds (ETFs) such as the ETFS Physical Gold (LSE: PHAU), for more see a list of gold ETFs here. You buy the ETF through your broker, the same way you would buy a share. You pay a small premium to the spot price of gold, and a small annual percentage to cover storage and other related costs.

ETFs really are brilliantly simple. It is because they’re so convenient that ETFs have become the means by which most investors and – perhaps more importantly in the financial scale of things – most institutions buy gold.

May 28 10:03

Atlanta To Transform 7 Acres Of Vacant Land Into Country’s Largest Free Food Forest

Atlanta’s City Council just voted in favor of transforming over 7 acres of vacant property into the state of Georgia’s first food forest. The measure, which paves the way for the largest food forest in the country according to Councilwoman Carla Smith, was approved last Monday after a unanimous vote.

The Urban Food forest will be available free of charge and will include edible trees, shrubs, and vines in addition to traditional community garden beds as well as walking trails, public gathering spaces and other features.

“It’s just like going into a park and picking muscadines from a bush,” Smith said.

The land, currently own by environmental agency The Conservation Fund, will be sold to the city of Atlanta for $157,384.00. The agency was in possession of the land after it was abandoned due to a failed business venture.

May 28 09:47

Global smartphone sales slumped by 22 MILLION devices last year as people stuck with their old handsets rather than invest in expensive new gadgets

Experts say sales dropped by 6.6 per cent for the first quarter of 2019 compared to the start of 2018.

Comments from consumers suggest they are growing weary of handsets that look, feel and perform in a similar way.

One expert says users are fed up of 'marginal gains' between each generation of handset, which fail to live up to the price hikes each year.

May 28 09:37

Forty Years of Privatisation Has Left Most Britons Out of Pocket

Mrs Thatcher's great sell-off of publicly owned services and assets, continued by successive governments, started exactly forty years ago to a fanfare of positive publicity.

Small shareholders own only a tiny proportion of the billion of pounds worth of assets that were sold off. Many of these assets are now owned by hedge funds. A large number are in foreign ownership, including quite ironically the state ownership of other countries.

We can have subsidiaries of German and Dutch state railways running our trains, (and buses) and charging British passengers higher fares than passengers in their home countries, but not British Rail.

May 28 09:13

The winner in the war on Huawei is Samsung

The past week of off-again, on-again support from Google to Huawei concerning Android, combined with the potential killer blow of Arm joining the party to shun Huawei, should be regarded as a warning shot to what sort of impact a proper trade war between the United States and China could have on the tech sector.

Despite the bluster and rhetoric out of the Oval Office, the simple fact is that the supply chains between the nations are far too intertwined for either country to avoid high amounts of pain as they get untangled.

Whatever device you are reading this on, there's a fair chance it was assembled in the Middle Kingdom, using componentry and intellectual property from the US.

May 27 13:27

THE BEST WAY TO HONOR FALLEN SOLDIERS IS TO STOP SENDING TROOPS TO WAR

SOURCE: ACTIVIST POST

By Carey Wedler

Every Memorial Day, Americans pay their respects to soldiers who have died while fighting for the US military. Though the good intentions and courage of those who enlist in the armed forces are admirable, the best way to honor those individuals on this holiday—and every day—is to stop sending them to war.

This pro-peace sentiment is often conflated with disrespect for the troops: If you don’t support the government’s wars, you must not support the soldiers fighting in them. However, considering the great cost to human life inflicted by military conflicts—the immense suffering soldiers, their families, and civilians in battleground countries endure—scaling back the size and scope of military programs is not only the best way to respect the troops but also a necessary measure to preserve liberty and freedom.

MILITARISM

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is why it is so critically important to have independent media around, particularly right now, because the corporate presstitutes only regurgitate what the Government tells them to, in order to provoke specific responses from their viewers on specific geopolitical issues.

When Karl Marx made the observation that "all wars are economic in nature", he was stating the absolute,ugly truth.

We're told that wars are "to protect the homeland, and American way of life, for glory, and valor, and honor of one's country."

But if you break wars down to their most simple components, you can see that this is not really true at all.

In Iraq, it was about who sold Iraq's oil, and in what national currency it would be sold; and today, Iraqi oil is only sold in US dollars.

In Afghanistan, it was all about the pipelines, who controlled them, and in what currency for which the oil was sold, which are US dollars at this point. There are the other issues, most critically, those of developing rare earth elements Mining in Afghanistan ; and access by the US's alphabet-soup agencies to opium poppies, from which heroin is made: Images: US military guarding Afghani poppy fields

And no, these were not photoshopped.

In Libya, it was about controlling its oil and the currency in which it would be traded, and also Moamar Gadhafi's threat to sell Libya's oil in gold backed dinars, rather than US dollars. Gadhafi's gold money plan would have devastated the US dollar

Unfortunately, its current civil war, which began immediately after Gadhafi was assassinated is not helping: The War Economy, and Haftar's battle for Libyan oil wealth

In Yemen, the war we don't hear about much, the US is aiding and abetting the Saudi Government in war crimes. And why?!? Take a look at the following, and it will be very easy to understand.

The major resources of Yemen...are oil and natural gas. And do they accept US dollars for their oil?!? Not at the momentStudy: Sanaa
Center for Economic Policy
, which makes them our "enemy", as well as Saudi Arabia's.

Folks, it is time to wake up here, and understand that the reasons/excuses/justifications for these endless wars always go back to money, and in what currencies natural resources are traded.

All the rest that you will hear, are pretty lies, wrapped up in a cheaply made US flag.

May 27 13:13

TRADE WAR SPARKS FEARS OF CHINA WEAPONIZING U.S. TREASURIES

It was an unnerving piece of data for investors two weeks back, buried halfway down an esoteric spreadsheet released by the U.S. government that tracks how many Treasuries foreign investors buy and sell. China, the largest foreign creditor to the U.S. government with total Treasury holdings in excess of $1.2 trillion, sold $20 billion of securities with a maturity exceeding one year in March, according to U.S. government data. The sales amounted to China’s largest retreat from the market in more than two years.

The move came shortly before tensions over trade between Beijing and Washington heated up again, with the U.S. slapping additional tariffs on the country’s imports, and Chinese officials retaliating with measures of their own. What’s more, the sales could not be explained away by the typical ebb and flow of China’s Treasury holdings that result from managing its large reserves to keep the currency stable.

May 27 13:11

Rare Earth Metals: China’s ‘Nuclear Option’ In The Trade War

A simple visit to an obscure factory by Chinese President Xi on Monday is all it took to raise the specter that China could be contemplating cutting off supply of critical materials to the U.S. and potentially crippling large swathes of its industries. Also, fueled by political innuendo in Xi’s recent call for a new “Long March” in reference to a key founding tenet of the Chinese Communist Party, speculators are growing increasingly wary of Chinese export restrictions to the U.S., including rare earth minerals.

As the world’s largest producer, the Middle Kingdom has a vice-like grip on rare earths supply.

May 27 12:57

Latest China Tariffs Will Cost American Households $831 Per Year, Fed Says

It's tempting to believe President Trump's insistence that Chinese companies will bear the costs of US tariffs, but as a chorus of emergent trade experts have pointed out, this simply isn't true.

American consumers will bear at least some of the costs of the new tariffs, though the extent will depend on how companies react to the new taxes (that is, whether they will pass it on to consumers, tolerate the gross margin hit, or decide to rejigger their supply chains).

May 27 12:34

QUALCOMM RULED A MONOPOLY, FOUND IN VIOLATION OF US ANTITRUST LAW

Apple and Qualcomm may have dropped their worldwide lawsuit war against each other, but that wasn’t the only battle Qualcomm faced. The FTC also brought a case against Qualcomm, alleging antitrust abuses and illegal behavior. In a ruling May 21, US District Court Judge Lucy Koh found that Qualcomm had violated the Federal Trade Commission Act. Qualcomm has pledged to immediately appeal the ruling, which has significant implications for its business structure and earnings.

“We strongly disagree with the judge’s conclusions, her interpretation of the facts and her application of the law,” Don Rosenberg, executive vice president and general counsel of Qualcomm, said in a statement Wednesday.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I think the judge has come to this ruling correctly.

May 27 12:31

NIGEL FARAGE’S POPULIST BREXIT PARTY WINS BIG IN EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT ELECTIONS

SOURCE: RT
The Euroskeptic Brexit Party headed by former UKIP leader Nigel Farage is looking at a solid victory in the European elections, early exit polls show, placing it at about 30 percent, over 20 percent ahead of the Conservatives.
The Brexit Party appears to have scored big in the UK’s portion of the European Parliament elections, with early results and projections on Sunday night showing it ahead of the rest of the field.

Farage began celebrating as the first exit polls started coming in. “It looks like it’s going to be a big win for the Brexit Party,”he told reporters.

With about 99 percent of the vote in, Brexit has some 31.6 percent, followed by the pro-EU Liberal Democrats with 20.3, Labour with 14.1 and the Greens with 12.1. The Conservatives are taking a massive hit and are projected to win only 9.1 percent.

UK: 99% counted.

Remain parties: 40.4%
Hard Brexit parties: 34.9%

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Well done, Nigel, congrats! And here, we have a moment of political sanity for the UK!!!

May 27 10:56

RARE EARTH METALS: CHINA’S ‘NUCLEAR OPTION’ IN THE TRADE WAR

A simple visit to an obscure factory by Chinese President Xi on Monday is all it took to raise the specter that China could be contemplating cutting off supply of critical materials to the U.S. and potentially crippling large swathes of its industries. Also, fueled by political innuendo in Xi’s recent call for a new “Long March” in reference to a key founding tenet of the Chinese Communist Party, speculators are growing increasingly wary of Chinese export restrictions to the U.S., including rare earth minerals.

As the world’s largest producer, the Middle Kingdom has a vice-like grip on rare earths supply.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF, in fact, China chooses to do this, their leadership may well, and truly, have some very delicate portions of the American economy by the short and curlies, and they know it!!

May 27 03:59

You Know Things are Falling When…

May 26 16:07

CALIFORNIA SENATE PASSES REVOLUTIONARY BILL TO BYPASS FEDERAL RESERVE, CREATE CANNABIS BANKING INDUSTRY

On Tuesday, the California Senate passed a bill that would establish limited state-chartered banks to serve the cannabis industry. Final passage of this legislation would remove a major federal roadblock in front of the developing industry in the state and further nullify federal prohibition in practice.

May 26 10:28

BIPARTISAN THIRST FOR MORE WAR: 75% OF CONGRESS CALLS ON TRUMP TO BOOST INTERVENTION IN SYRIA, TO ‘PRESSURE’ IRAN AND RUSSIA

SOURCE: BEN NORTON, GRAYZONE PROJECT

WHILE TRUMP THREATENS IRAN AND VENEZUELA WITH NEW WARS, 400 CONGRESS MEMBERS, INCLUDING LEADERS FROM BOTH PARTIES, WANT TO INTENSIFY THE EIGHT-YEAR WAR ON SYRIA, TO WEAKEN IRAN, RUSSIA, AND HEZBOLLAH.
While the Donald Trump administration is threatening two new wars on Iran and Venezuela, a substantial majority of the US Congress is clamoring for more immediate action.

Nearly 400 Congress members from both chambers — roughly 75 percent of all federal US lawmakers — have signed an open letter calling on President Trump to escalate the war in Syria, in the name of countering Iran, Russia, and Lebanese Hezbollah.

Top Democratic Party leaders have joined hawkish Republicans in a bipartisan demand that the far-right president “address threats in Syria” and “demonstrate American leadership in resolving the prolonged conflict.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One has to remember; unlike the President, (who has to put his money into a blind trust, before he takes the Oath of Office), Senators and Congressional Representatives, can put their money, in terms of investment, anywhere they wish.

One has to wonder, just how many of them are invested in either companies which provide weaponry, or other military-supportive companies, like those who create medicines, or food, for our troops.

When wars come, companies like these, make incredible profits, as well do their stockholders. So, when our "alleged" representatives feel that they can "justify" wars (in which, I might add, their kids will most probably not be fighting), they will do so, at the drop of a hat; hell, they have nothing to loose, right?!?

Wars represent a terrible failure of imagination, for most logical folks.

And of course, Israel and AIPAC, are encouraging these was against their enemies, so the costs will only be borne, in American blood, and American money.

May 26 09:08

Trump arrives in Tokyo and digs Japan for 'substantial edge' on trade

Donald Trump kicked off his state visit to Japan on Saturday by urging Japanese business leaders to increase investment in the US – but he also complained about his own central bank and knocked his hosts for having a “substantial edge” on trade, which he said negotiators were trying to even out.

May 26 09:08

Without Gold The Wealthy Will Be Wiped Out

May 26 09:03

US-China Collaboration Summit Breaks Through The Insanity Of US-China Trade War

While the world watches America shoot itself in the foot yet again as President Trump targeted Huawei as an enemy of the state, a beacon of sanity shown through the darkness this week as 400 U.S. state leaders, business people, non-profits and Chinese delegates representing four provinces, converged on Lexington, Kentucky from May 22-24 for the 5th Annual US-China Governors Collaboration Summit. This summit which rotates between China and the USA every year, was especially important as it cut through the narrative that America is one homogeneous beast with one singular outlook aimed at world dominance.

May 26 09:01

CHINESE STATE REPORTERS CAUGHT "SNOOPING AROUND" NATO BASE, GERMANY INVESTIGATES

SOURCE: ZEROHEDGE

Journalists representing China's main state media outlet are in hot water after they were seen filming NATO military equipment and asking probing questions of German soldiers about their daily routines and military jobs.

The incident has threatened to alight fresh controversy related to European and US suspicious of aggressive global spying tactics by Beijing, not the least of which is Chinese firm Huawei's rollout of next-generation 5G products inside Germany, which Berlin has controversially been favorable to, resulting in the Trump administration notifying the German government in March that the US would limit the intelligence it shares with German security agencies should Berlin move forward in permitting Huawei to build the country's mobile-internet infrastructure.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The first question I would need to ask is, are why did the Chinese reporters do this so ham-fistedly, in order to draw attention to themselves?!?

The second question I would have to ask, is why did the NATO personnel at the site allow this to happen in the first place?!?

Folks, I need to suggest here, politely, that this may have been an exercise in entrapment on the part of NATO, and was engineered to focus, for Americans and Europeans, on the "China Bad Syndrome", which has been bandied about, in Europe, and the US, for quite some time.

May 26 08:53

The US returns to buy Venezuelan oil Zajárova says

From May 10 to 17, the United States imported 49,000 barrels of Venezuelan crude oil. This is the first time that the country imports its neighbor's oil in weeks and the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, María Zajárova, has commented on the figure, published in the weekly report of the US Energy Information Administration.

Zajárova recalled that in March the press reported that the special envoy of the United States Government for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, had said that the United States was seeking "the complete isolation of President Nicolás Maduro on the international stage and, above all, the cessation of any commercial transaction of banks, companies and companies with Venezuela that would be beneficial for Maduro ".

Zajárova countered Abrams' words that the US has resumed Venezuelan oil imports . 49,000 barrels a day.

"And so always, first they encourage everyone to do something and then they change their maneuver 180 degrees, leaving those who gave in," he said.

May 26 08:25

STOLEN NSA HACKING TOOL NOW VICTIMIZING US CITIES, REPORT SAYS

SOURCE: CNET.COM
A hacking tool developed by the US National Security Agency is now being used to shut down American cities and towns, says a Saturday report in The New York Times.

Code-named EternalBlue, the hacking exploit involves malicious software and was leaked in 2017 by a group called Shadow Brokers. Hackers used the tool that same year in the worldwide WannaCry ransomware attacks, which locked up computer systems at hospitals, banks and phone companies and required a ransom to set the networks free. It was also used in the 2017 NotPetya assault against Ukraine, which has been called one of the most destructive cyberattacks ever.

Now, though, EternalBlue has reportedly landed in the NSA's own backyard: Baltimore, site of the agency's headquarters. The city has been hobbled since a ransomware attack on May 7 ensnared the local government's computers, disrupting city services. Baltimore's IT department is only slowly getting systems up and running again.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Yikes! This is, officially, horrible!

Did NO ONE understand what might happen, if this code got into the wrong hands?!?

May 26 07:19

Let The Chips Fall Where They May

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