Wayne State University Drops Math As General Requirement, Will Replace It With “Diversity”

A faculty committee has proposed adding a three credit hours requirement in diversity to the general education curriculum at Wayne State University. It also recommended that WSU drop its university-wide requirement in mathematics, an idea that was carried out on June 13.
‘We are proposing the creation of specific ‘Diversity’ courses, with students required to take one course in this designation,’ said a document from the General Education Reform Committee, which is recalibrating what the university will expect from all students who earn a degree from the state university. It released the proposal in May.
The committee report said, ‘These courses will provide opportunities for students to explore diversity at the domestic level and consider the ways in which it intersects with real world challenges at the local, national and/or global level.’
In announcing the change in mathematics, the university said, “This decision was made largely because the current (math) requirement is at a level already required by most high school mathematics curriculum.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 19, 2016.

An Update From Keith Neumeyer

Late last week, I had the opportunity to speak once again with Keith Neumeyer, CEO of First Majestic Silver and Chairman of First Mining Finance. If you’re an owner or prospective owner of these shares, you should be sure to listen to this update.
Among the topics Keith and I discuss:
The decision on Wednesday by The Fed to keep the Fed Funds rate at the current level The trends in global silver demand that have been exacerbated in 2016 The astonishing level of asset acquisition by First Mining Finance The all-in sustaining cost for First Majestic as well as the amount of earnings that flow to the company’s bottom line with each one dollar rise in the silver price This was a very valuable 20 minutes of my time and I’m sure it will be the same for you. Therefore, please be sure to listen.

This post was published at TF Metals Report on June 19, 2016.

Mrs.Watanabe Defies The BOJ Once Again While Betting On Robots

As the BOJ continues to load up on Nikkei ETFs in hopes that the rest of the market will be faked out and buy Japanese equities, Mrs. Watanabe continues to be a nemesis.
In addition to being in the market for DM government bonds, Japanese investors are also piling into Nikko Asset Management’s Global Robotics Equity Fund, which would be fine with the BOJ, except that only a third of the fund is allocated to Japanese equitites. As the FT reports, the fund’s assets are divided up roughly in thirds among the US, Japan and Europe, holding a portfolio of 41 stocks relating to robotics and automation. The fund’s top holdings are Japanese factory automation group Keyence, and US-based Rockwell Automation.

This post was published at Zero Hedge by Tyler Durden – Jun 19, 2016.

Meanwhile In Missouri…

A personalized license plate that reads ‘JIHAD 1′ has been allowed in the state of Missouri…. (because ‘DEATH TO THE INFIDEL” was too long?)
After examining the policies for granting or denying personalized license plates, a Department of Revenue representative told local News4 that they had no legal authority to deny the word. However, as CreepingSharia.com reports, a similar personalized license plate that read ‘J1HAD’ was rejected by the state in 2009.
The state did not provide an explanation for why that particular license was rejected while this one was allowed, according to News 4.

This post was published at Zero Hedge by Tyler Durden – Jun 19, 2016.

Are You Listening, Canada: Australia Slaps Chinese Home Buyers With New Taxes

In a move that we strongly urge Canada (and every other nation which is the end-target of Chinese hot money laundering) to evaluate, Sydney announced it would impose new taxes on foreigners buying homes as concerns grow that a flood of mostly Chinese investors is crowding out locals and killing the ‘Great Australian Dream’ of owning property. As Sydney prices rise to record levels – the Australian city is ranked only second to Hong Kong as major cities with the world’s least-affordable housing – new potential homeowners have been increasingly forced out of the market with foreigners blamed as a key factor the AFP reports.
We can only assume that China’s infamous offshore money laundering nexus of Vancouver did not make the list because some Chinese oligarch paid enough money to make that particular city name disappear.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on JUN 19, 2016.

What the Heck’s Going on in Global Stocks?

The NIRP Rout
In Japan, the Eurozone, Denmark, Sweden, and Switzerland, where central banks, in their infinite wisdom, have imposed negative interest rates supplemented with harebrained bond-buying schemes, bond prices have soared to where many government bonds and even some corporate bonds are trading with negative yields. Given this amount of liquidity and the free-for-all in corporate borrowing, stock markets in those countries should be booming, which had been part of the plan.
Alas, they’ve gotten hammered: almost all NIRP countries’ major stock market indices have gotten shoved, some deeply, into a bear market.
US stock indices, in this unsavory crowd, are the cleanest dirty shirts, with the S&P down 3.0% and the Dow down 3.7% from their peaks in May 2015, and the Nasdaq down 8.3% from its peak in July 2015.
The small-cap Russell 2000 is down 11.6% since its peak in June 2016. Small caps are powered by rocket fuel on the way up. When that fuel is burned up, they come down hard. They tend to lead larger cap stocks on the way up and on the way down.

This post was published at Wolf Street by Wolf Richter ‘ June 19, 2016.

Why Janet Ain’t Yellin’ ‘Higher Interest’ Anymore: Jobs Worse than Expected and Far Worse than Reported

In the fall of 2015, I said the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates once in December then would not be able to fly any higher thereafter. The stock market would crash shortly after the Fed pulled up on the interest stick (which it did in what became the worst January in stock-market history), and then the Fed’s hopes of recovery would fade away.
I also said that, in spite of a continually degrading economic situation around the world, the Fed would badly want to lift its interest target again in order to prove its recovery had recovered from the first lift. The fact that it would not be able to without stalling the economy completely wouldn’t mean it wouldn’t try. If it did try, however, it would find out in hindsight that any additional pull back on the stick would crash the economy into the dust of the earth.
Here we are half a year later. The collapse did not continue down as quickly as I thought it would. The stock market and oil market stabilized and recovered after January, but the US and global economy remain on a downward flight path, evidenced by falling GDP stats and rapidly declining job numbers.
The Fed certainly appears to be trapped. Fed officials have pounded the pavement to talk about their intention to raise interest rates, but every month faces additional reasons that the Fed is unable to do so.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 19 June 2016.

Brexit Rules The Week

The Brexit vote is this Thursday, so nothing else matters until then. And polls, just to make it even more stressful, have it neck and neck. See Brexit poll tracker back to even at 44-44.
While we’re waiting, let’s consider some related questions:
Would leaving the EU be good or bad for Britain in the short run? A lot of definite-sounding opinion is being tossed around on this count – see ‘Negative and substantial’ impact on UK if it leaves EU: IMF – but it’s important to take such things with a grain of salt. No one has the slightest idea how such a divorce would go and if its immediate impact would be positive or negative.
Government agencies in particular view official statements as a tool for herding the masses in the proper direction. But they demonstrably suck at actual prediction. Go back through the history of Fed or IMF or ECB or Congressional Budget Office reports – here’s classicBernanke on the previous decade’s housing bubble – and you’ll see that their predictions aren’t even random: Because their purpose is to shape public opinion rather than express truth, they’re right even less than half the time. So question number one can only be answered with a shrug and a ‘who knows?’
Would Brexit be a big deal in the long run? Here it’s easier to speculate, because market forces come into play. If one country leaves the EU then several more might do so in short order, and that might unravel the whole organization. This would produce ongoing chaos as each new election risks installing an anti-EU government and the Brexit drama is repeated continuously – though with new names like Frexit and Sprexit. The resulting uncertainty would be bad for the value of financial assets that depend on faith in governments and central banks. All those negative interest rate bonds would behave like junk, dropping to 70 cents on the dollar as buyers demand some return to go with their risk. Equities, which trade in part with reference to bond yields, would probably also behave like junk, falling in response to uncertainty instead of rising on the expectation of central bank salvation. So bad in the long run for the current irredeemably corrupt financial system – which is to say probably good for most regular people.

This post was published at DollarCollapse on JUNE 19, 2016.

Thanks to the Fed, $1300 Gold Is Just the Start

Markets continued to worry about the upcoming Brexit vote while witnessing another version of the Federal Reserve’s ongoing revival of Hamlet.
Something is indeed rotten in ‘Denmark,’ aka the Fed’s headquarters in D. C.’ Marriner Eccles Building – namely that the central bank has no clue what it is doing and appears hell-bent on driving the U. S. economy (and the rest of the world) over a cliff.
Janet Yellen said it herself…
Making Sense of Yellen’s Gibberish
In fact, she admitted as much last week (at least the first part, that she has no idea what she is doing) in her press conference when she was asked by CNBC reported Steve Liesman if the Fed has lost credibility since it never does what it says it will do.

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner by Michael E. Lewitt ‘ June 19, 2016.

“Black Wednesday” Memories Haunt Traders Ahead Of Thursday’s Referendum

Ahead of Thursday’s historic Brexit referendum vote, market jitters are bringing back memories of September 16, 1992, when the UK was forced out of the EU’s exchange-rate mechanism, or ERM, as speculators’ borrowing exhausted the central bank’s resources to keep the pound above its floor.
This is better known as the day George Soros “broke the Bank of England”, making over $1.5 bilion profit in the process. On that day, the U. K. decided to let the pound float freely rather than to suffer the high interest rates needed keep the currency within its limits. As a result the central bank raised its key rate to 12% from 10%, then announced a second increase to 15%. By the evening of that same day, which became known as ‘Black Wednesday,’ the government withdrew from the ERM, a pre-euro system of European exchange-rate integration.
24 years later, traders recall one of the longest days in the history of the currency.
Here, courtesy of Bloomberg and for the benefit of traders who were still in school (or may not have been born), is a recap of how veteran FX traders saw, and reacted to, events on “Black Wednesday” two and a half decades later in what has been dubbed “one of the longest days in the history of sterling.” Will Thursday be an even more historic day for FX trading? We will know the answer in just four days…
John Glover, now a Toronto-based managing director at risk- advisory firm Validus Risk Management:

This post was published at Zero Hedge by Tyler Durden – Jun 19, 2016.

“We Have Reached The Point That Keynes Warned Of In His General Theory”

Now that new warnings about failing central bank policy are emerging every single day, from Deutsche Bank, Citigroup and Bank of America, among others, here courtesy of Bloomberg’s Christopher Maloney is a brand new one, one which take a different angle, and suggests that none other than Keynes predicted just the “dead end” outcome that the world finds itself in right now.
Here is the full warning from Bloomberg’s Chris Maloney
We have arguably reached the point that Keynes warned of in his General Theory where demand for money and credit to satisfy what he labeled ‘non-speculative’ motives has been more than satisfied; which brings us to this week’s money supply report. The main beneficiary of growth in available money and credit since the Fed combined ZIRP and QE in the end of 2008 has been financial markets. An example is the outsized aggregate percentage growth in U. S. equity markets compared to the tepid pace for GDP.

This post was published at Zero Hedge by Tyler Durden – Jun 19, 2016.

The Federal Reserve has brought back ‘taxation without representation’

In February 1768, a revolutionary article entitled ‘No taxation without representation’ was published London Magazine.
The article was a re-print of an impassioned speech made by Lord Camden arguing in parliament against Britain’s oppressive tax policies in the American colonies.
Britain had been milking the colonists like medieval serfs. And the idea of ‘no taxation without representation’ was revolutionary, of course, because it became a rallying cry for the American Revolution.
The idea was simple: colonists had no elected officials representing their interests in the British government, therefore they were being taxed without their consent.
To the colonists, this was tantamount to robbery.
Thomas Jefferson even included ‘imposing taxes without our consent’ on the long list of grievances claimed against Great Britain in the Declaration of Independence.

This post was published at Sovereign Man on June 16, 2016.

Deutsche Bank: “This Chart Is Even More Appropriate To Show A Broken Financial System”

Yesterday, DB’s credit strategist Jim Reid (whose bank just hit a new record low stock price earlier this morning), said that “If One Wanted A Simple Indicator Of A Broken Financial System, Then This Is It”, and proceeded to show the chart of the 10 Year Bund yield, which is now well in the negative territory. Today Reid, in his quest to show how broken the global “market” has become as a result of relentless central bank tinkering, and has come up with what he believes is an even better example.
This is what he said:
… how can i get virtually guarantee to get 100 back on an investment in the middle of this century? Well one way would be to spend 231 CHF today and buy the Swiss 2049 maturity Government bond. You have the luxury of an annual 4% coupon to ease the pain of the ginormous capital loss but over the last couple of days, this 32.5 year bond joined the negative yield club (on the ask side). Yesterday we said that the chart we published on 10 year bund yields back to 1807 was an excellent way of showing a broken financial system well maybe the chart in today’s PDF showing this Swiss 2049 bond yield is even more appropriate. You now have to pay the Swiss government for the privilege of lending to them for nearly 33 years. I wonder what the real return on that investment will be over its lifetime? All guesses welcome.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 16, 2016.

First Treasuries, Now China Is Also Liquidating US Stocks

One year ago, this website was the first to observe that when combined with its offshore Belgium-held holdings, China was first slowly then fast liquidating its Treasury holdings, an observation which led us to correctly predict that China would proceed to devalue its currency, which it did shortly after. Sure enough, shortly thereafter it became common knowledge that the PBOC, owner of the world’s biggest foreign-exchange reserves and largest offshore holder of US Treasuries, had burnt through 20% of its inventory since 2014, dumping about $250 billion of U. S. government debt and using the funds to support the yuan and stem capital outflows.
As it turns out, China wasn’t selling only Treasuries. According to a Bloomberg analysis when peeking deeper at the TIC data, while China’s sales of Treasuries have slowed, its holdings of U. S. equities are now showing steep declines as Beijing proceeds to liquidate a substantial portion of its US equities.
This means that in addition to oil exporting nations such as Saudi Arabia, whose liquidation of US stocks we also predicted back in 2014 when we commented on the death of the Petrodollar, the “other” big seller of US equities has been found: China’s stash of American stocks sank about $126 billion, or 38%, from the end of July through March, to $201 billion. “That far outpaces selling by investors globally in that span – total foreign ownership fell just 9 percent. Meanwhile, China’s U. S. government-bond stockpile was relatively stable, dropping roughly $26 billion, or just 2%.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 16, 2016.

These Are The Banks That Would Be Hardest Hit In The Event Of A Brexit

With the referendum scheduled for next Thursday to decide whether or not the UK will leave the European Union, many have speculated on the potential impacts of a vote to leave.
There has been plenty of scaremongering (which has been subsequently dismantled by a JPM CIO), and even the obligatory Barack Obama op-ed telling the British how to behave (which has also backfired). To be sure, there will be consequences to either decision that gets made and no doubt the truth of the impact is somewhere in the middle of what has been said in the verbal tug of war back and forth between proponents of both sides.
However, as Brexit odds hit an all-time high, the WSJ gives a succinct overview of the banks that would be the most affected should the UK vote to leave.
To start, the problems that UK banks will encounter would be twofold. The banks would potentially lose access to European markets, and the next wave of concern would be presumably a weaker pound accompanied by higher interest rates – the latter hurting those who are already highly indebted.
Before getting into the negative impacts for the UK banks, there is one bank who may high five voters if a leave vote is pushed through. The Royal Bank of Scotland, who is mostly state-owned, is struggling with the cost and complexity of splitting off a chunk of itself to satisfy European rules – this would potentially go away if the UK were no longer a part of the EU.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 16, 2016.