Friday, August 2, 2013

Just Pathetic: Non-Farm Payroll Report

What I find completely ridiculous is that the elitists now have the investment world completely trained  to sit on the edge of their seat and wait with unbridled anticipation for a completely fraudulent economic number to be released that's been promoted by CNBC as "the most important economic report of the year" - week after week.  It's like hungry, obedient baby seals waiting for the trainer to toss them some fish.  -  me in an email to T. Ferguson, TF Metals Report
 And yet another Non-Farm Payroll report farcical Friday.  I was chatting with a long-time gold/silver accumulator earlier today who made the comment that "as rule of thumb it's safe to assume everything the Government reports is a complete lie."

Like baby seals trained to wait for their master to toss them some fish, the market waited anxiously for the employment report.  The Wall Street brain trust consensus was expecting 185,000 new jobs but the number reported missed at 162k.  Every single big Too Big To Fail bank had estimates that were significantly higher than what was reported.  It's down-right embarrassing for the economists at these banks because they missed so badly.

June's farce of a number, made up entirely of part-time jobs, was revised lower.  Another 37k completely disappeared from the labor force, as they decided it was easier to receive Social Security disability benefits than to suffer through a part time job a Taco Bell.  Of the jobs supposedly created, 65% were part-time.  And the average weekly earnings dropped.

If you're interested, you can wade through the report yourself here:  LINK   Zerohedge has done a nice job breaking out the jobs in terms of the quality of jobs created - i.e. bartenders vs. manufacturing, with 10 times more "bartender" type jobs than jobs that contribute to economic prosperity:  LINK

If Obama feels good about that accomplishment as the President, more power to him.  As far as I'm concerned, Obama and his agenda been a complete failure.  Speaking of his Holy Grail, Obamacare, I just saw a news headline scroll by that reported that more than 50% of the States have refused to implement those nefarious "insurance exchanges."   And I know several people who are already braced to pay premiums in excess of 50-75% of what they pay now for reduced coverage.  But, of course, Obamacare has had a self-serving purpose for El Hefe:  Obamacare has created over 900k jobs this year for the Government, of which 731k are, of course, part time LINK

Circling back the gentleman who made the observation about Government-reported economic data, he and I both think that the U.S. is in the final stages of collapse.  As I state in the by-line to my blog title, "I'm not worried how high in price gold is going, I'm worried about what the world around us will look like when it gets there."  I have a bad feeling we are going to find just what that will look sooner than most people realize or are willing to believe.



    Published on Aug 1, 2013
    This is my interview with Karen Hudes the Whistleblower from the World Bank. This is a wide ranging discussion covering her time at the World Bank and what led her to blow the whistle on the corruption she found there. In the process her view of the worldwide corruption widened to include governments and the overall monetary system.

  2. Dave,
    I lost my small business lending job 6 years ago. I worked for a Private Canadian lender who ran a pretty tight ship. One problem they were being funded by insurance companies, then...they went with a Bear Stearns funding platform. Well you know the rest. I was able then to work for a client whom I had funded many equipment transactions..until the Virginia Dept of Environment tested his Legal expense fund, needless to say his hedge fund ended up selling his business assets. Then I worked for a friend whom I had worked for in College. He owned a high end café in Annapolis. Well, lets just say his time had come too. Well, I got back in the equipment lending business, but lasted only one year.
    I just landed two part time jobs!!!! Food taster for Jamie Dimon and Blythe Masters. Not sure about the longevity, but wow, their wines, champagnes and Kobe steaks are great!! Second job is walking Ben Bernanke to his car when he leaves work. I really could not understand how come I had to put on the Flack jacket. He seems like such a nice guy!!!

  3. Dave, your post reminded me of something I've been pondering for a while. We know (through deduction) that the US and other Western Countries are leasing/losing gold quickly. We also know that China is preparing to back their yuan with gold as other currencies near a point of collapse.

    What I haven't seen anyone address, is that given the nefarious nature of governments, what is stopping the government from then creating a campaign against gold owners (as speculators and part of the problem), make gold illegal, and then track down everyone who as purchased or even spoken about it, for confiscation?

    I understand the argument that they don't "need" to do this anymore to print money, but when the jig is up and they are out of gold, and facing the reality of China becoming the next financial super power, why would they not simply resort to more draconian measures to fight back against China being the only gold backed currency? After all, most of the sheeple will be in dire straights, and we already know that they believe any message on gold that the government puts out without question.

  4. Dave,

    I think I may have written this same thought many times or at least I have thought it in my head.

    Up to 2008 I was a stalwart buy and hold guy, had some trading going on but the majority of my 401k/IRA/brokerage went into DODGX, a decades old fund which almost always beat the S&P. Until 2008 when, because of overweight in financials, it got hammered.

    I got out, not at the lows, but pretty darn close. At the same time, a colleague turned my onto gold and miners. Since 2008 I have accumulated gold, silver and some miners, mainly GDXJ. Was going well until late 2011 as I assume it did for everyone.

    So that's the history. The question is, I am dead even in my physical gold avg price over the past 5 years, about $1.50 per ounce don on silver and pretty much destroyed in GDXJ. In the meantime, DODGX has recovered nearly all it lost since 2008, and had I just stayed the course, I would currently, on paper, be much better off financially.

    I truly am more comfortable holding physical. Between gold and sliver, it is 61% of my investable worth.

    But I am just wondering, what is the end game here? By all accounts, and I am saying this tongue in cheek a little, the govt and Fed have complete, utter control. Why can't they continue to have control for the next 20 years as they have for the past 20? Sure, will be a bubble here and there and a market crash here and there, but in 19 years, when I am 65, will I be able to say I will be better off because I was in metals?

    Some people try to put timelines on things, virtually everyone has been wrong. There are days where I believe the control is so absolute that gold will be $1300 in 2025 while the dow will be at 60,000.

    It's a question I struggle with constantly, getting pummeled daily with new record S&P highs and such.

    I appreciate your column.


    1. Mike,
      Suffered similar smash down. The fox news story last nite should contain your answer. 10 year yield just destroyed every penny the FED made since 2008. Could wipe out their entire BS if rates continue upwards. Think all retirements including public that hold these bonds.

  5. Hey Dave, Relax everything is going to be OK. There is no inflation, your receipts are wrong. Employment will be increasing by October/November this year. Then Xmas will bring increased spending by consumers and then by spring economic green shoots will blossom. I swear I heard it on CNBC. /sarc

  6. Company with ties to Terry McAuliffe is under SEC investigation
    By Tom Hamburger and Ben Pershing, Updated: Friday, August 2,

    An electric-car company co-founded by Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe is under investigation by the SEC over its conduct in soliciting foreign investors. The SEC subpoenaed documents from GreenTech Automotive and a sister company, Gulf Coast Funds Management. The investigation is focused, at least in part, on alleged claims that the company “guarantees returns” to the investors, according to government documents.

    GreenTech has sought overseas investors through a federal program that allows foreigners to gain special visas if they contribute at least $500,000 to create U.S. jobs. Gulf Coast, which is run by Anthony Rodham, the brother of former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton, seeks investors for GreenTech and arranges the visas.

    McAuliffe’s close ties to the Clintons have fueled his political career — during the Clinton presidency he was often referred to as “first friend.” McAuliffe said last year he thought GreenTech could build 10,000 cars in 2013. Only a fraction of that number has been built, and McAuliffe rarely mentions the company on the campaign trail.

    In recent months, the SEC has stepped up its scrutiny of companies that use the visa program, largely over concerns that investors may have been misled or defrauded by the companies seeking their money. The visa program has also raised national security concerns from some lawmakers, who are worried that suspect individuals are using it to gain entry into the country.

    WaPo link:

  7. Gold and silver? They are pretty silly investments. I have been accumulating weapons for some time. I have 2 AK-47, 1 M-16, 2 RPG-26 and 1 FIM-92 Stinger. I can get anybody's gold and silver for free including the authors'.

  8. USPS takes photos of all mail

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Postal Service takes pictures of every piece of mail processed in the United States — 160 billion last year — and keeps them on hand for up to a month.

    In an interview with The Associated Press, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said the photos of the exterior of mail pieces are used primarily for the sorting process, but they are available for law enforcement, if requested.

    The photos have been used "a couple of times" by to trace letters in criminal cases, Donahoe told the AP on Thursday, most recently involving ricin-laced letters sent to President Barack Obama and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

    "We don't snoop on customers," said Donahoe, adding that there's no big database of the images because they are kept on nearly 200 machines at processing facilities across the country. Each machine retains only the images of the mail it processes.

    "It's done by machine, so there's no central area where any of this information would be," he said. "It's extremely expensive to keep pictures of billions of pieces of mail. So there's no need for us to do that."

    Also, any modern copier used in the last two decades saves all copies onto an internal hard drive that is rarely formatted. Eventually these copiers are sold off for new models with every piece of paper copied on it intact on that hard drive.

  9. It is amazing with how so much can be held from the mass population of Americana. The media has done an outstanding job in this area. In fact it is actually a service for many an American to be able to have had the abundant amount of time allotted in order to figure out how royally that they are getting screwed by the banking world , their own government and all most all of the areas of big business.
    As a gesture of good will one should sincerely thank the elite for making sure that the economy has had ample time to continue sputtering along while every attentive human being is able to accumulate the only worthwhile asset needed for the future ; physical gold and silver !

  10. Friday, August 2, 2013
    Dodd-Frank at Three: More Lawless Capitalism


    More surprising, Rep. Frank issued a challenge regarding Too-Big-to-Fail (TBTF) (8:13). He claims Dodd-Frank makes every bailout of 2008 “impossible.” That is simply nonsense, as I posted on the day after the Dodd-Frank Act was signed. Specifically, the Dodd-Frank Act amends section 13(3) of the Federal Reserve Act in a way that paves the way for the Fed to bailout large banks so long as it does so pursuant to a program or facility that features “broad-based eligibility.” Indeed, the Act directs the Fed and the Treasury to create emergency lending programs and facilities “as soon as practicable.” The only limitations the Act imposes on this emergency lending power is that borrowers cannot already be in bankruptcy or receivership and the loan cannot be made with the “purpose of” assisting a “single and specific company.”

    New section 13(3) of the Federal Reserve Act empowers the Fed to provide for loan programs with “broad-based eligibility” for “the purpose of providing liquidity to the financial system.” It is hard to see how the new section would stop bailouts like the AIG Bailout or the Bear Stearns Bailout–both of which explicitly occurred under section 13(3).

    That is why both Treasury Secretary Lew and Fed Chair Bernanke now admit that TBTF has not been solved yet.


  11. J.P. Morgan's Commodities Chief at a Crossroads
    Blythe Masters Was Among First to Suggest Selling Unit; Her Next Move Isn't Clear

    It upset Ms. Masters that outside pressure contributed to J.P. Morgan's determination to move more aggressively, but she still made the argument internally that the risks of staying in the business outweighed the rewards, said a person briefed on the conversations. She and other top executives came to realize that most commodities clients didn't rely on J.P. Morgan to store metals or provide electricity and that it would be increasingly difficult to keep physical assets as government officials warned of pitfalls from allowing banks to play so many different roles in a market.

    The reversal raises new questions about the future of one of the best-known women on Wall Street. Ms. Masters, 44 years old, rose quickly in part because of a blunt, aggressive approach, a sharp knowledge of complex Wall Street trading tools and early exposure to Chief Executive James Dimon.

    Ms. Masters also came under the spotlight as enforcement staff from a federal electricity regulator in March accused her and three traders of making false representations under oath as part of an investigation that concluded that the bank engaged in manipulative electricity-bidding behavior. J.P. Morgan said in a statement at the time that it disputed the allegations and that no one lied under oath.

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission probe became a major frustration for Ms. Masters, who initially resisted a settlement and penalties for the traders involved because it was her view the firm and employees did nothing wrong, according to people close to her. She hired an attorney to defend herself against the allegations.

  12. Michael Lewis on Goldman Sachs: The Company Would Flourish Under Totalitarian Rule

    Would you say that Serge’s story is the logical outcome of the financial crisis, or are those two things in contradiction to each other?

    The judicial response to the financial crisis, especially the criminal and legal response, has been bizarre. But it’s always bizarre. The Justice Department in Manhattan, the D.A., they’re very good at certain kinds of cases. Insider trading, theft of property from a corporation, these are easier for them to take on and wrap their minds around than what was actually the center of the financial crisis.

    In a funny way, the authorities, in response to not being able to prosecute the actual bad behavior that was actually really important, became more interested than they maybe should have been in peripheral cases that just happened to have Wall Street in the headline. He’s such a case. He has nothing to do with the financial crisis, except that he happened to work in the institution that is at the heart of it.

    The Justice Department, more or less, mistakenly thought that on the surface, what he did was cut-and-dried, and that it was easy to prosecute.

    They were right. You can put this guy in jail, especially with Goldman Sachs’s help. To me, the astonishing thing is that even after the financial crisis, Goldman Sachs can call the F.B.I., and on their word alone—about the value of what was taken, about the purpose of what was taken—get someone arrested two days later.

    It seems that whatever makes large firms better at manipulating markets also makes them good at manipulation elsewhere.

    [Laughs] I couldn’t get to the bottom of this, and Goldman’s people aren’t allowed to talk on the subject, but one day it’s going to be riveting to learn how Goldman Sachs, in 48 hours, managed to gin up this case and present it to the F.B.I. Who decided to do what and why? I’m not sure if it was all so malicious. I think it’s quite possible that Goldman itself didn’t know what he had taken, the value of it, the purpose of it, or anything else. As Serge says, there was no one at Goldman who actually understood the whole computer system. He said to me, “When I got there, there was a guy who seemed pretty well versed in everything. He left.” And there was such turnover at Goldman, and the system was such a hairball, that I think people knew pieces but they didn’t know the whole. Serge might have been as close as there was to an expert on the how the whole system worked. I think the valuable thing that Serge took when he walked out the door was himself.

  13. In the second half, Max talks to journalist, author and filmmaker, Greg Palast of, about Goldman Sachs and John Paulson and about Obama intervening in the case of vulture capitalist Paul Singer versus Argentina only in order to help out Jamie Dimon and JP Morgan.

  14. Ignorance

    Choosing a topic to write about in today’s world is usually no problem. I usually sit down for 5 minutes watching CNBC, hear something really stupid and point at the TV and say “I call B.S.” Today I got an e-mail from one of the largest gold/miner money managers in the world in response to my last piece. He told me that one of his salesmen just went to a presentation by the CEO of one of the largest miners in the world. The salesman asked him, why do they keep selling more to bullion banks? Why don’t they sell directly to the marketplace? Why not sell directly to a mint or a refiner and cut out the supply that the bullion banks use to fractional reserve or hypothecate …more gold than exists?

    OK, here is the punch line. The CEO replied “I never thought of that.” Are you serious? Are you an idiot or just plain ignorant? Think about it, if some guy with a mask broke into your house and held a gun pointed at you…and then said “It’s not loaded, can I borrow some ammo?” …would you scrounge around and give him some? Don’t get me wrong, the mining companies do (will) have huge leverage to the price of gold but they are being run by complete fools!

  15. Kyle Bass Warns "There Is No Real Way Out"

    Quantitative easing is nothing but "competitive devaluation," Kyle Bass begins this brief but wide-ranging interview; and while no central bank can explicitly expose the 'beggar thy neighbor' policy, they are well aware (and 'banking on') the fact that secondary or tertiary effects will lead to devaluing their currency. The bottom line, Bass warns, is "when the globe is at 360% credit market debt-to-GDP, there is no real way out." Furthermore, the winds of austerity have already blown (simply put no nation engaged in austerity prospectively - for the nation's betterment - they were forced by the bond markets) and with central bankers now dominant - the Krugman-esque mentality of "let's just keep going," is very much in the driver's seat since politicians now see "no consequence for fiscal profligacy." The average investor, Bass adds, "is at the mercy of the central bank puppeteers," as the Fed's policies are forcing mom-and-pop to "put their money in the wrong place at the wrong time." There will be consequences for that... there is only one way this will end... "and investors should be really careful doing what the central bankers want them to do."

  16. Feds are Suspects in New Malware That Attacks Tor Anonymity

    Security researchers tonight are poring over a piece of malicious software that takes advantage of a Firefox security vulnerability to identify some users of the privacy-protecting Tor anonymity network.

    The malware showed up Sunday morning on multiple websites hosted by the anonymous hosting company Freedom Hosting. That would normally be considered a blatantly criminal “drive-by” hack attack, but nobody’s calling in the FBI this time. The FBI is the prime suspect.

    “It just sends identifying information to some IP in Reston, Virginia,” says reverse-engineer Vlad Tsrklevich. “It’s pretty clear that it’s FBI or it’s some other law enforcement agency that’s U.S.-based.”

    If Tsrklevich and other researchers are right, the code is likely the first sample captured in the wild of the FBI’s “computer and internet protocol address verifier,” or CIPAV, the law enforcement spyware first reported by WIRED in 2007.

    Court documents and FBI files released under the FOIA have described the CIPAV as software the FBI can deliver through a browser exploit to gathers information from the target’s machine and send it to an FBI server in Virginia. The FBI has been using the CIPAV since 2002 against hackers, online sexual predator, extortionists and others, primarily to identify suspects who are disguising their location using proxy servers or anonymity services, like Tor.

    The code has been used sparingly in the past, which kept it from leaking out and being analyzed or added to anti-virus databases.

  17. Exclusive: U.S. directs agents to cover up program used to investigate Americans

    (Reuters) - A secretive U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration unit is funneling information from intelligence intercepts, wiretaps, informants and a massive database of telephone records to authorities across the nation to help them launch criminal investigations of Americans.

    Although these cases rarely involve national security issues, documents reviewed by Reuters show that law enforcement agents have been directed to conceal how such investigations truly begin - not only from defense lawyers but also sometimes from prosecutors and judges.

    The undated documents show that federal agents are trained to "recreate" the investigative trail to effectively cover up where the information originated, a practice that some experts say violates a defendant's Constitutional right to a fair trial. If defendants don't know how an investigation began, they cannot know to ask to review potential sources of exculpatory evidence - information that could reveal entrapment, mistakes or biased witnesses.

    "I have never heard of anything like this at all," said Nancy Gertner, a Harvard Law School professor who served as a federal judge from 1994 to 2011. Gertner and other legal experts said the program sounds more troubling than recent disclosures that the National Security Agency has been collecting domestic phone records. The NSA effort is geared toward stopping terrorists; the DEA program targets common criminals, primarily drug dealers.

    "It is one thing to create special rules for national security," Gertner said. "Ordinary crime is entirely different. It sounds like they are phonying up investigations."


  18. Millions of notes not printed in mints land in RBI vaults

    "These are not accounts of some fledgling start-up we are referring to. How can the country's apex bank be indifferent towards this? The facts are startling and I feel that more than one note with the same unique number is being printed," said RTI activist Manoranjan Roy, who sourced the information through the RBI.

    Roy had applied to the RBI for all relevant data; the bank forwarded his application to the presses for the total count of notes printed. He has now asked President Pranab Mukherjee to intervene and order an inquiry.

    The apex bank, however, claims there is nothing improper or illicit in this mismatch. Its spokesperson said: "One reason for the difference between the number of notes supplied by printing presses and the numbers provided (to you) by printing presses could be that the printing of notes is a continuous process over years. It is not necessary that all notes printed in any particular year are supplied to RBI in that year itself."

    The RBI's contention that printing and transporting notes is a non-stop process and that some of the money may be in transit is at odds with its own rules, which specify that mints cannot keep any stock. In fact, they don't even have any vaults to hold the money.

    Between 2000 and 2003, the mints delivered all the 1,000-rupee notes they printed to the RBI. In the next year, only 209 million of the 213 million notes printed were delivered, and in 2004-05, 257 million notes were delivered while 0.3 million notes were shown as being in transit.

    The puzzle then is: How did the RBI receive a total of 598 million notes when only 591.342m were printed, and 0.3 million were in transit. In value terms, the discrepancy amounts to Rs 668.8 crore. Figures show a similar trend in 2010-11. If notes in transit are taken into account, 3.342 million more notes reached the RBI than were actually produced.

    The RBI's response to this: "It may be a big number, but in terms of currency notes, when you are printing hundreds of millions of notes, a difference of a few million will not matter," its spokesperson said.

    and you want to stop the poor Indians from running to gold/silver....what would you do?

  19. Why the Right Should Support the Return of Glass-Steagall


    In Part 1 of this article I detailed the insane solutions proposed and executed since 2008 by our owners as they attempt to retain and further expand their ill-gotten wealth, acquired through fraud, deceit, swindles, and the brilliant manipulation and exploitation of the masses through Bernaysian propaganda techniques. Madness has engulfed the entire world, with a concentration of power in the hands of a few psychopathic financial elite wielding an inordinate and dangerous expanse of power over the lives of the common man. They are a modern day version of Al Capone, except their weapons of choice aren’t machine guns, but a printing press, peddling debt, creating derivatives of mass destruction, and peddling heaping doses of disinformation. The contemporary criminal class wears Hermes suits, Rolex watches and diamond studded pinky rings, drops $500 to dine at Masa in NYC, travels by chauffeured limo, lives in $10 million NYC penthouse suites, occupies luxurious corner offices in hundred story glass towers, and spends weekends hobnobbing with the other financial elite at their villas in the Hamptons. They have nothing but utter contempt for the lowly peasants who depend upon a weekly paycheck to make ends meet. Why work when you can steal $1 or $2 billion from farmers with no consequences?

  21. The “New Economy” Is The No Jobs Economy — Paul Craig Roberts

    I take a simpler approach. I look at where the reported jobs are alleged to be. In the 21st century, the jobs created by “the world’s largest economy” have been lowly-paid, non-tradable, domestic service third world jobs. Manufacturing and tradable professional service jobs such as software engineering have been moved offshore to low-wage, low-salary locations. The savings in labor costs have enriched corporate executives, Wall Street, and shareholders.

    I have made this point monthly for many years, and it has had no effect on economists, policymakers, money managers, or financial markets, all of which continue in their make-believe world of make-believe reality.

    Here we go, one more time. Of the 161,000 reported private sector jobs gained in July, 157,000 or 97.5 percent, are in non-tradable domestic services. A non-tradable service is a job that produces services that cannot be exported, such as waitresses, bartenders, hospital orderlies, retail clerks, warehousemen. Thus, no matter how large the number might be, it cannot reduce the huge US trade deficit. Most of these jobs are part-time jobs without health or pension benefits. People in these jobs tend to live hand-to-mouth. These jobs do not produce sufficient income to drive a consumer economy.

    Of these 157,000 reported jobs, 63,000 or 40 percent are reported to be in trade, transportation, and utilities. Of these 63,000 jobs, 60,500 of them or 96 percent are in wholesale and retail trade.

    Before we go to the next category, ask yourself if you believe that in an economy that has had no recovery, in which there are no new manufacturing or construction jobs, in which the labor force participation rate is down, in which shopping center parking lots are far from full, stores with such a poor sales outlook would hire so many people in July?

    As former executives of the “banks too big to fail” and their proteges run the US Treasury, the financial regulatory agencies, and the Federal Reserve, US economic policy has been focused on bailing out the excessively large banks created by mindless deregulation. The purpose of US economic policy is to save the large banks from their bad bets on poorly understood new financial instruments in the gambling casino created by deregulation.

    The architects of financial deregulation, such as former Senator Phil Graham and President Bill Clinton were rewarded for their service with fortunes of their own. The free market dupes, who aided and abetted Bill and Phil and misrepresented the repeal of financial stability as a new beginning for laissez faire capitalism, still pretend that the crisis resulted from Congress requiring banks to make mortgage loans to poor black people who could not pay.

  22. Private-Equity Payout Debt Surges
    Private-equity firms are adding debt to companies they own to fund payouts to themselves at a record pace, as fears mount that the window for these deals will close if interest rates rise. So far this year, $47.4 billion of new loans and bonds have been sold by companies to pay dividends to the private-equity firms that own them, according to data provider S&P Capital IQ LCD. That is 62% more than the same period last year, which wound up being the biggest year on record, with $64.2 billion sold to fund private-equity payouts.

    The added debt, known as a recapitalization, can increase companies’ risk of default, according to a recent study by Moody’s Investors Service.

    Dividend deals are like “taking out a home-equity loan and then using the money to go on vacation,” said Ray Kennedy, a high-yield bond fund manager at Hotchkis & Wiley Capital Management LLC in Los Angeles, which he said generally tries to avoid dividend deals. “You didn’t use the money to do anything productive in the house like redo a room; you just went out and spent the money.”

    here's the recovery in motion soon to be followed by the bankrupt decline...

  23. France warns of money laundering in vineyard sales to Chinese

    France's money laundering investigators have called for "increased vigilance" in sales of vineyards to Chinese buyers, as more of the country's finest wineries are sold to investors from the world’s second-largest economy.

    The annual report of the anti-money laundering unit of the French Ministry for the Economy and Finance, Tracfin, released last month has also singled out Russian and Ukrainian buyers, but has noticed a "growing presence of investors with ties to China".

    Some of these buyers would use "complex judicial arrangements with holding companies located in fiscally privileged countries" to obtain these vineyards, making it difficult to establish the origin and the legality of the funds brought into France.

    The report comes as China has raised the issue of money laundering to the “national strategic level” in an attempt to reign in the massive outflow of funds from the country, according to remarks by the People’s Bank of China’s deputy governor Li Dongrong in May.

    The Chinese economy lost US$3.79 trillion in illicit financial outflows betweem 2000 and 2011, the Washington, DC-based research and advocacy group Global Financial Integrity said in a study last year.

    can't be the only market for laundering...............

  24. Derivatives…Can Never Settle

    I have been asked the question why, if money supply, debt ratios and all the rest have gone more pear shaped and on a far larger scale than the 1970′s. Then why have gold and silver not performed as they did back then? The gentleman who asked the question also made the statement “Well I can’t buy the argument that it’s all manipulated and controlled”… to which I would ask why not? I have gone over this so many times but briefly…there is motive for sure. There is ability with sovereign holdings of physical metal and … we have something (several things) now that did not exist back in the 1970′s. We also know that past Fed Chairman Volcker said, “It was a mistake” to have “let” gold get out of a box and out of control back in the 1970′s.

    First off, ETF’s did not exist back then. You can say whatever you’d like but my opinion on ETF’s is simple. With gold and silver they were created in the first place as a “pressure valve” to divert demand AWAY from the physical markets. I don’t for a moment believe that they purchased all of the metal that they say they did. In silver particularly, the amounts of metal supposedly purchased was not even known to exist. We also have evidence all over the place that “unallocated” or “pooled” accounts do not have the metal that they represent. This was not the case back in the 1970′s as there was still “adherence to the law.” The law was followed and feared, now it is laughed at openly by those running the show as “laws only apply to us serfs” now.

  25. The New York Times Endorses Plutocracy!

    If you happened to have read The New York Times’ opinion section this weekend, you may have noticed you were told that the U.S. Senate – the body comprised primarily of millionaires – apparently needs more lawmakers who are very close to the wealthy.
    Yes, despite every member of the upper house raising huge amounts of campaign money primarily from the American aristocracy, and despite the fact that legalized bribery results in votes that consistently defend the aristocracy’s economic interests at the expense of everyone else — the grey lady’s editorial board implored voters to see Senate candidates’ all-too-close relationship with America’s uber-rich not as something suspicious or repugnant, but as something commendable and worthy of reward.

    Some of Mr. Booker’s opponents are trying to denigrate those assets — his fame, his ability to work with Republicans, his coziness with the moneyed class.

    You read that correctly: According to the Times, being “cozy with the moneyed class” should be seen by voters as an “asset” for an aspiring senator – one the Times insinuates shouldn’t dare be “denigrated” by other candidates.

    Of course, the Times is fairly accurate in declaring Booker as “cozy with the moneyed class.” If anything, in fact, it’s an understatement – Booker is one of Corporate America’s most loyal and obedient Democratic politicians.

    As the Republic Report and ThinkProgress both document, Booker’s entire political career has been bankrolled by Wall Street. According to The Record newspaper, that includes his current U.S. Senate race, in which Booker “is tapping high-tech billionaires (and) Wall Street hedge-fund managers” to finance his campaign.
    That’s what makes the Times’ house editorial so important and such a critical historical marker in this new Gilded Age: beyond its endorsement of a particular corporatist candidate, it provides a rare example of the establishment press admitting to its plutocratic worldview.

    In that worldview, voters are not supposed to see politicians’ loyalty to corporations and the wealthy as the root of so many of the nation’s problems. Instead, we are supposed to see a politician’s unity with the “moneyed class” as an altogether desirable “asset” — no matter how much that so-called “asset” harms the country.

  26. I don't know which way to go with Moyers. Of late he seems to be on the common mans side.
    As for Booker, he grew up in a rich little neighborhood surrounded by the hood of Newark.
    He certainly has been shown the ropes from lad hood and knows how to play the game.

    Quite frankly the whole of Washington has become a giant cesspool and the lot of them should be flushed down the toilet.

    The longer we wait - the more assured that they will try and destroy us out of their own pathetic desperation ~ or not ...but rest assured they don't give a rat's ass about you or me.

    Be active in addressing the problem. Change your paper dollars into physical silver. It directly affects these bastards !

  27. The Pariah Shortage

    As far as the two costliest fiascoes of the last decade go—the Iraq war and the subprime-mortgage crisis—it’s difficult for many of us to move on in the absence of any sort of rational resolution. The Obama administration has shown scant interest in getting to the bottom of how we let these two disasters bring the country almost to its knees. Which is something of a mystery.
    In the absence of a cathartic resolution to the past five years of financial misery brought about by the banking industry, the savings-and-loan crisis of the 80s and 90s may be instructive.

    The deregulation-fueled subprime-mortgage explosion and crisis of the past decade wiped out nearly 500 banks and, according to the nonprofit group Better Markets, will end up costing taxpayers at least $12.8 trillion. That’s more than 100 times the cost of the S&L crisis.

    Furthermore, not only did the architects of the subprime-mortgage crisis get no comeuppance, many of those in charge of failed financial institutions left their posts having pretty much won the lottery.
    To say that Eric Holder has been ineffective as the nation’s chief law enforcer would be an understatement, especially when it comes to financial institutions.Before he went into government, Holder worked at the esteemed Washington, D.C., law firm of Covington & Burling, where he was one of the top attorneys in its white-collar criminal-defense division.

    Earlier this year, Lanny Breuer, who had headed the criminal division of the Department of Justice under Holder—and was therefore the point man on the department’s ineffectual subprime investigations—went back to work for Covington & Burling, where he had been a partner prior to his brief spell in public service. He’ll be getting a reported $4 million a year.

    With the cost of the Iraq war totaling $1.7 trillion, and U.S. military fatalities approaching 4,500 and the number of wounded nearing 35,000, the American cheerleaders of the invasion, President George W. Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, continue to spout their mantra “Even knowing what I know now, I would do the same thing over again.” It’s meant to be an all-purpose waiver of responsibility for what happened. In truth, it’s as infuriating as it is nonsensical.

  28. The Dreadful Summer Wind
    The USA cannot come to terms with the salient facts staring us in the face: that we can’t run things as we’ve set them up to run. We refuse to take the obvious actions to set things up differently. Instead, we’ve tried to offset the accelerating losses of running our unrunable stuff with accounting fraud, aimed at pretending that everything still works. But the accounting fraud has only accelerated the gathering disorder in the banking system. That disorder has infected our currency and the infection is spreading to all currencies. What a surprise that the first pandemic to strike an overstressed global immune system was not bird flu after all, but a sickness of money.

    Near the center of that money sickness was the blitzkrieg against gold and silver in the spring, when arrant serial selling dumps were executed against the money metals to un-money them. The net result was only that a lot of that ancient money flowed from the places pretending it was valueless to the places that never adopted that pretense. At stake in that rather massive movement was the supposed value of the other stuff that pretended to hold value, namely sovereign bonds, and especially the treasury paper issued by the USA. After all, US Treasury bonds and notes were, in the eyes of bankers, the functional equivalent of cash-in-hand. Alas, the world was starting to choke on it — not least the US central bank itself, which had been gorging at the monthly auction buffet for years and was now stuffed to the gills. In fact, it had grown too fat to even leave the room where the buffet had been set up.

  29. FBI arrests 2 South Florida mayors
    FBI arrests mayors of Miami Lakes, Sweetwater on bribery-related charges; both suspended

    MIAMI (AP) -- The FBI arrested two South Florida mayors Tuesday morning on bribery-related charges.

    Miami Lakes Mayor Michael Pizzi and Sweetwater Mayor Manuel "Manny" Marono were taken into custody at their offices, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Miami reported. Both made their first appearances in federal court Tuesday afternoon.

    Pizzi, elected in 2008 and in his second term, is an attorney who once worked for a high-profile criminal defense firm in Miami. According to federal prosecutors, Pizzi — who is also Medley's town attorney — and Richard F. Candia, an attorney and lobbyist, were involved in a kickback and bribery scheme in connection with federal grants for both Miami Lakes and Medley.

    Marono, a member of the Sweetwater City Commission since 1995, became mayor in 2003. He serves as president of the Florida League of Cities and played a role in Gov. Rick Scott's transition team in 2011. An indictment claims that Marono and lobbyist Jorge L. Forte — the former manager of North Bay Village — were involved in a separate kickback and bribery scheme in connection with federal grants for Sweetwater.

    Both complaints charge the defendants with conspiracy to commit extortion.

    Note to many cities are there?...keep going.....

  30. FINRA Is Investigating E*Trade's Trading Practices

    Griffin, the founder of hedge fund Citadel LLC, which runs a competing trade execution business, earlier this year resigned from the E*Trade board and sold Citadel's 9.6 percent stake in the discount broker.

    E*Trade also said in the filing that banking regulators and federal securities regulators "may initiate investigations" into its historical order-routing practices. Those could lead to monetary penalties, cease-and-desist orders and private lawsuits from customers that could each "materially and adversely affect" its broker-dealer business, the company said.

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