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The End of the American Dream

The middle class in America is in crisis, with incomes falling and life expectancy worsening. Why? And what can be done about it? Simon Wilson reports.

by Simon Wilson
Money Week

What’s it like to be a middle-class American?

Increasingly precarious, it seems. In an article entitled “The Secret Shame of Middle Class Americans” in this month’s issue of The Atlantic, the writer Neal Gabler – an author, film critic and academic – came out as one of the many millions of apparently middle-class Americans who are in fact living in a “more or less continual state of financial peril” – scrabbling around to make ends meet, and mostly failing.

Gabler draws attention to a regular survey by the Federal Reserve, which asks consumers a set of questions, including how they would pay for a $400 emergency. “The answer: 47% of respondents said that either they would cover the expense by borrowing or selling something, or they would not be able to come up with the $400 at all”, writes Gabler. “Four hundred dollars! Who knew? Well, I knew. I knew because I am in that 47%.”

Continue Reading at MoneyWeek.com…

The $6 Trillion Corporate Debt Implosion Begins in T-Minus 3… 2…

by Graham Summers
Gold Seek

The corporate bond market is a $6 trillion time bomb waiting to go off.

It took the US half a century to grow its corporate bond market to $3 trillion.

Thanks to the Fed implementing ZIRP and holding rates there for seven years, we’ve doubled the corporate bond market, adding another $3 trillion in corporate debt… since 2009.

Continue Reading at GoldSeek.com…

Now Japanese Prime Minister Abe Predicts Global Economic Catastrophe is Imminent

by Jeff Berwick
Dollar Vigilante

We continue to report on important mainstream investors, professional and private, who have warned about an impending, global financial catastrophe. Now, add Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to that list.

George Soros, Stanley Druckenmiller, and Carl Icahn among others have all made dire statements. They’ve also reconfigured their portfolios and taken positions in gold and silver and shorted the market.

The latest to join this list of doomsayers is Japanese Prime Minister Abe. This past Thursday at the G7 meeting he warned about the upcoming global crisis.

Abe was trying to generate support for global fiscal stimulus, according to reports. He told G7 members that the present times reminded him of the “post-Lehman era” in 2008. Lehman went bankrupt in September of that year and by the end of 2009, stock markets lost as much as half their value.

Continue Reading at DollarVigilante.com…

Why the Next Black Swan Will Turn Into a Flock

by Mark St.Cyr
Mark St.Cyr

I was on the phone the other day with a friend, who is also my accountant. We’ve been friends going on 30 years. Once in a while our discussions will veer off into what is commonly known as “shop talk” where we find we’ve suddenly gone from “just gabbing” to a multi-hour intense conversation about markets, the economy, and more. This past one was a little more of “the exception” rather than just the average swing into the generic.

What I discerned from many of his responses was just how inadequately prepared, justifiably frightened, as well as, an overwhelming sense of foreboding was lying right below the surface of those many might deem from the outside looking in as people of wealth, industry leaders, or people who are just assumed to be “well off.”

Continue Reading at MarkStCyr.com…

Meh (‘Fit and Fat’)

by Karl Denninger

Define “fit” please.

Despite the conflicting research, most medical professionals agree that it’s better to be normal weight than obese, and even the 2012 study spoke of a “subset” of obese people who were metabolically healthy.

Define “metabolically healthy” please.

If you didn’t run an insulin assay with your OGTT, you don’t know. You can appear to be metabolically healthy but whether you actually are requires a lot of testing and it’s expensive. Nobody does it for this reason, since there’s no clinical presentation of disease or disorder, and yet those people may in fact be metabolically compromised.

Continue Reading at Market-Ticker.org…

Will There Always Be an England?

by Patrick J. Buchanan

In his op-ed in The Washington Post, Chris Grayling, leader of the House of Commons, made the case for British withdrawal from the European Union — in terms Americans can understand.

Would you accept, Grayling asks, an American Union of North and South America, its parliament sitting in Panama, with power to impose laws on the United States, and a high court whose decisions overruled those of the U.S. Supreme Court?

Would you accept an American Union that granted all the peoples of Central and South America and Mexico the right to move to, work in, and live in any U.S. state or city, and receive all the taxpayer-provided benefits that U.S. citizens receive?

Continue Reading at LewRockwell.com…

Stunning Satellite Images of the Global Tanker Oil Glut

from Zero Hedge

One week ago, we showed the latest MarineTraffic update of the unprecedented congestion of crude oil tankers located off the coast of Singapore, together with an extended analysis of what is causing this and what are the implications.

[…] Today, we’ll spare readers the ongoing analysis – which hasn’t changed – and instead present the following dramatic satellite images just released from Reuters, showing “huge traffic jams of tankers which have formed around the world with some 200 million barrels of oil either waiting to be loaded or delivered as ports struggle to cope with record volumes in perhaps the most visible sign of the global oil glut.”

Continue Reading at ZeroHedge.com…

This Could Soon Lead to the Collapse of the U.S. Dollar

by Nick Giambruno, Senior Editor
International Man

“I did not have sexual relations with that woman.”

“Read my lips: no new taxes.”

“We were not trading arms for hostages.”

Politicians are professional liars. They do it every day. And they usually do it without any consequences.

I’d bet that Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan, who told the three lies quoted above, didn’t think twice about them.

Continue Reading at InternationalMan.com…

Brussels Extends “Juncker Plan” Outside EU, to Immigration Projects: UK the Biggest Contributor

by Mike ‘Mish’ Shedlock
Mish Talk

British citizens seeking yet another reason to vote Brexit, have one in spades.

The roots of this reason go back to last year when European Commission president Jean Claude Juncker hatched a 3-year plan to leverage €20 billion in seed capital to produce a €300 billion gain in Eurozone investment.

As one might expected, the results are nonexistent even though Juncker has already used up the €20 billion in seed capital.

Juncker now wants to up the seed capital, make the plan permanent, and extend the plan outside the EU to immigration zones such as Syria and Africa!

Continue Reading at MishTalk.com…

Currency Manipulation by the United States is Alive and Well

by Tommy Behnke

Last month, central bankers and finance leaders from the Group of 7 (G-7) advanced economies met in Sendai to discuss the global economy at large. As expected, the United States cautioned Japan, a US currency watchlist country, to refrain from taking further steps to manipulate its currency. This warning came as a result of finance minister Taro Aso hinting that his country was “prepared to undertake intervention” in the foreign exchange market in order to weaken the yen.

The hypocrisy of US Treasury Secretary Lew’s injunction is laughable. He might as well have told Japan, “We’re America, we’re powerful, and we’re allowed to make rules that we’re allowed to break,” because that was certainly the implication of his words.

Continue Reading at Mises.org…

Mortgage Rates Fall to Record Low as Bank of England Mulls Rate Cut

Home buyers can take advantage of the lowest mortgage rates on record, according to Bank of England figures which go back to 2004

by Tim Wallace

Home buyers in April paid the lowest interest rates ever on their mortgages, according to the Bank of England.

Earlier in the year banks and building societies scrapped some of the best deals on offer because they expected the Bank of England to start raising interest rates.

Since then, however, forecasts for a rate rise have been pushed back, and some Bank of England officials have even discussed the possibility of a cut to the base rate to below its current 0.5pc level.

Continue Reading at Telegraph.co.uk…

Why the Fed Would Be Absolutely Insane (As if They Aren’t Already) to Raise Rates on June 15th

by Andrew Hoffman
Miles Franklin

After a month of unadulterated, unabashed, brazen, blatant, shameless, market manipulation; of everything from stocks, to bonds, currencies – and of course, crude oil – I had a “Popeye moment” last night. As in, “that’s all I can stands, I can’t stands no more.” Have no fear, I’m not going anywhere – as given my desire to “beat” a Cartel that has done everything in its power to ruin my life for the past 14 years, no force – plant, animal, or mineral – will stop me from following my life’s work through. So despite my moment of weakness, rest assured I’ll do “whatever it takes” to get my message of truth across.

To that end, my desire to help others through what will unquestionably be the most catastrophic currency crisis in history is equally powerful – starting with my own family, and including everyone reached by the Miles Franklin Blog. Frankly, given the charmed life I’ve been blessed with, it’s borderline pathetic for me to complain so much.

Continue Reading at MilesFranklin.com…

Silver Price To Surge To Over $100/oz on Global Technological “Gadget” Demand

by Mark O’Byrne

The silver price is set to surge 800% or “ninefold” in the coming years due to global industrial and technological demand, the “gadget boom” and tight supplies according to a leading mining executive, of First Majestic Silver Corporation.

[…] Silver “supply concerns” could “boost the metal’s price ninefold”, according to the CEO of the best-performing producer of the metal as reported by Bloomberg.

Neumeyer, the E&Y Mining Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 said that a major Japanese electronics maker had approached First Majestic Silver Corp. for the first time last month seeking to lock in future silver stock:

Continue Reading at GoldGore.com…

It’s Not Just Brexit — Greece, Spain, France Are Also on the Brink

It could be a wild weekend in late June if all the crises come to a head

by Matthew Lynn
Market Watch

LONDON (MarketWatch) — The hedge funds will have prepped their positions. The investment banks will have ordered in pizza and extra coffee ready for a long night of dealing. Exit polls will have been commissioned, and currency traders will be ready to buy or sell sterling GBPEUR, -0.9223% as soon as they start getting a clear idea of whether Britain has voted to stay in or get out of the European Union on June 23.

But hold on. In fact, it is not just the risk of Brexit that the markets need to be worrying about. In truth, the real drama is going to come over a long and difficult weekend, leading up to potentially wild day in European assets on Monday, June 27.

Continue Reading at MarketWatch.com…

Why Is This Correction Different From All Other Corrections?

by Avi Gilburt
Gold Seek

After reading the title, you may expect me to say something like “let my metals go.” And, you are likely quite right. So rather than afflicting you with the plague of darkness, allow me to illuminate how I view the market as it currently resides.

How Do Corrections Develop and Why May This One Be Different?

Those that have experience trading the market have figured out that there are usually 3 movements within a corrective decline phase. The first drops the market from the high, the second provides a counter-trend bounce, which fools most into believing that the primary trend has returned, and the 3rd dashes those hopes, and brings back the fears of the prior bear market, as the market moves down to lower levels, but makes a higher low before continuing in its trend higher.

Continue Reading at GoldSeek.com…

New U.S. Business Formation Falling Off a Cliff

by Quartz
David Stockman’s Contra Corner

We’re supposedly living in the age of startups when people can create new businesses, enrich themselves, and employ their fellow Americans. That narrative, like much economic optimism these days, is now mostly a tale for coastal cities, and a tenuous one at best.
Fewer new businesses were created in the last five years in the US than any period since at least 1980, according to a new analysis (pdf) by the Economic Innovation Group (EIG), a bipartisan advocacy group founded by the Silicon Valley entrepreneur Sean Parker and others. Businesses that did form are also far more concentrated than ever before: just 20 counties accounted for half of the country’s total new businesses. All of them were in large metro areas.

Continue Reading at DavidStockmansContraCorner.com…

Here’s What You Trade When Stocks Pull a “Switcheroo”

by Greg Guenthner
Daily Reckoning

Sell in May and go away is the oldest investing trick in the book.

It rhymes—so it must work, right?

But what the heck are we supposed to sell?

Not stocks. The major averages looked ready to roll over until a late rally pushed them back into the green. Not oil. Crude continued its climb toward $50. Even the Almighty Dollar enjoyed a powerful May rally, pushing the red-hot precious metals lower for the month.

Just when you think you have something figured out, this ornery market pulls the ol’ switcheroo and stomps your trade into the ground.

Continue Reading at DailyReckoning.com…

How the Fed Stopped the “Corporate Profit Recession” (And the Media Fell for It)

by Wolf Richter
Wolf Street

This about sums up the US economy in more than one way.

The end of the corporate “profit recession” has been declared last week. It was based on data by Bureau of Economic Analysis, released on May 27. Corporate profits, after declining with some zigs and zags since their peak in the third quarter 2014, suddenly ticked up in the first quarter 2016. And everyone was ecstatic.

Corporate profits are in the eye of the beholder. For example, “adjusted earnings” – the ex-bad items earnings proffered by companies and analysts – of the S&P 500 companies have dropped four quarters in a row, since their peak in Q2 2015, on a year-over-year basis.

Continue Reading at WolfStreet.com…

Consumer Spending Rebounds

by Chuck Butler
Daily Pfennig

Good Day… And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! And Welcome to June! Pfennig Tradition says that we start the month of June with this: June is bustin’ out all over, all over the meadow and the hill. Buds are bustin’ outa bushes and the rompin’ river pushes Every little wheel that wheels beside the mill! June, June, June, Just because it’s June! The Moody Blues greet me this morning with their song: New Horizons, which is a beautiful song from the Seventh Sojourn album, which is as I’ve stated many times before, is one of the 10 albums I would take to the island with me…

Continue Reading at DailyPfennig.com…

Elitist Arrogance

by Walter E. Williams

White teenage unemployment is about 14 percent. That for black teenagers is about 30 percent. The labor force participation rate for white teens is 37 percent, and that for black teens is 25 percent. Many years ago, in 1948, the figures were exactly the opposite. The unemployment rate of black 16-year-old and 17-year-old males was 9.4 percent, while that of whites was 10.2 percent. Up until the late 1950s, black teens, as well as black adults, were more active in the labor market than their white counterparts. I will return to these facts after I point out some elitist arrogance and moral bankruptcy.

Supporters of a $15 minimum wage are now admitting that there will be job losses. “Why shouldn’t we in fact accept job loss?” asks New School economics and urban policy professor David Howell, adding, “What’s so bad about getting rid of crappy jobs, forcing employers to upgrade, and having a serious program to compensate anyone who is in the slightest way harmed by that?” Economic Policy Institute economist David Cooper says:

Continue Reading at LewRockwell.com…

Parag Khanna – Connectography, Mapping the Future of Civilization (Episode #678)

from The Creating Wealth Show

Today’s guest, Parag Khanna is a best-selling author in addition to being a CNN Global contributor and Senior Research Fellow at the Centre on Asia & Globalisation at the National University of Singapore. He shares with us many of the facts and figures behind his new book, Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization. His book highlights what he believes to be the two major irreversible, mega-trends of humanity, urbanization and infrastructural connectivity. When discussing the U.S., Mr. Khanna says the U.S. should be re-mapped physically and better internet connectivity and better transport systems should be put into place in the next 5-10 years.

Just go to JasonHartman.com and get started now!

Click Here to Listen to the Audio

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Congress’ Treachery, the FBI’s Double-Crossing and the American Citizenry’s Cluelessness: With Friends Like These, Who Needs Enemies?

by John W. Whitehead
The Rutherford Institute

“The evil was not in bread and circuses, per se, but in the willingness of the people to sell their rights as free men for full bellies and the excitement of the games which would serve to distract them from the other human hungers which bread and circuses can never appease.” – Admiral Ben Moreell (1892 – 1978), chief of the U.S. Navy’s Bureau of Yards and Docks and of the Civil Engineer Corps

As the grandfather of three young ones, ages 5 to 9, I get to see my fair share of kid movies: plenty of hijinks, lots of bathroom humor, and an endless stream of slapstick gags. Yet even among the worst of the lot, there’s something to be learned, some message being conveyed, or some aspect of our reality being reflected in celluloid.

So it was that I found myself sitting through The Angry Birds Movie on a recent Sunday afternoon, doling out popcorn, candy and drinks and trying to make sense of a 90-minute movie based on a cell phone video game that has been downloaded more than 3 billion times.

Continue Reading at Rutherford.org…

Law Firm Behind Trump University Lawsuit Gave Big Money to the Clintons

by Rachel Stockman
Law Newz

Donald Trump has undoubtedly made the class action lawsuit against Trump University a campaign issue. For the last several days, he has been on a tear against federal Judge Gonzolo Curiel who is overseeing one of the class action lawsuits against Trump University. In the lawsuit, former students claim that the University and Trump violated federal law by luring them to sign up with false promises and then defrauded them once they handed over their checks.

LawNewz.com discovered that when it comes to politics, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, the law firm behind the class action lawsuit, is not exactly neutral either. Our analysis, using data first compiled by The Washington Post, found that Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd paid the Clintons a total of $675,000 in fees for speeches since 2009. Hillary Clinton gave a $225,000 speech at the law firm as recently as September 4, 2014. Bill Clinton also gave a speech for the same fee back in 2013, and another one in 2009 before the firm had been renamed (they used to be called Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins LLP). In fact, of the five law firms that paid for the Clintons to speak over the last few years, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd paid out the most money.

Continue Reading at LawNewz.com…