Gold at (1:30 am est) $1224.50 down $1.00
silver was : $17.72: UP 2 CENTS (unchanged)
Access market prices:
Gold: $1226.30
Silver: $17.78
For comex gold:
For silver:
For silver: MARCH
Total number of notices filed so far this month: 1763 for 8,815,000
Late FRIDAY night after receiving the preliminary data for Monday, I wanted to think about the data overnight as well as to see if this fits with Ted Butler’s assertion of basically collusion with some of the Hedge Funds (managed money)
If you have not read Ted Butler yet, I urge you to read it (in last night’s commentary) and then study today’s OI data.
One could see that the original plan of the bankers was to raid gold and silver with the object to get the gold down to an OI level of 390,000 contracts and silver down to the 165,000 area. They have done this quite a few occasions starting in 2011 and continuing to this year.
I now believe Butler’s assertion is correct in that the hedge funds are no longer playing the game especially in silver. He correctly portrays the hedge funds as as the Washington Generals losing every time with the Harlem Globetrotters the victors all the time.
Now everything makes sense:
the ‘salary’ for each ‘Washington General’ hedge fund was paid in cash settlements. That is how these hedge funds would continually lose for 5 years and still play in the game.
It also explains, a huge obliteration of open interest on an active contract as we head into first day notice.
the boys were being paid for their work and they then reload with fiat bonus and play again.
It also explains how the amount standing of each month lowers as the month proceeds. Each of the collusive players are waiting to be paid.
However, somehow, the hedge funds (Washington Generals) did not want to play anymore with the bankers (Harlem Globetrotters). The hedge funds decided not to sell on any huge whack. This is why Thursday’s OI reading on silver hardly moved despite a 74 cent drop in price. The huge follow through yesterday orchestrated by the bankers (Harlem) also ended in failure. That is why at 1:00 o’clock they could see that the OI hardly budged so they raced as fast as they could to cover. The price of silver instead of being down by 8 cents, it rallied to unchanged at comex closing time and then up 19 cents upon access closing time.
We are not seeing the same game yet in gold but it may be in its infancy. However in silver, something is scaring our Washington Generals to not play the silver fraud any more.(lack of silver maybe?)
Let us have a look at the data for today

This post was published at Harvey Organ Blog on March 6, 2017.

Pepsi Lays Off 20% Of Its Philadelphia Workers, Blames Soda Tax

Two weeks ago, we pointed out that when Philadelphia became the first US city to pass a soda tax last summer, city officials were eagerly looking forward to the surplus-tax funded windfall to plug gaping budget deficits (and, since this is Philadelphia, the occasional embezzlement scheme). Then, one month ago, after the tax went into effect on January 1st we showed the tax applied in practice: a receipt for a 10 pack of flavored water carried a 51% beverage tax. And since PA has a sales tax of 6% and Philly already charges another 2%, the total sales tax was 8%. In other words, a purchase which until last year came to $6.47 had overnight become $9.75.
What happened next? Precisely what most expected would happen: full blown sticker shock, and a collapse in purchases. Just two months into the city’s sweetened-beverage tax, supermarkets and distributors are reporting a 30% to 50% drop in beverage sales and – adding insult to injury – had started planning for layoffs.
Fast forward just a few days later, when these warnings are becoming reality. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, with sales slumping as much as 40% because of the new Philadelphia sweetened beverage tax, Pepsi said last week that it will lay off 80 to 100 workers at three distribution plants that serve the city. And since Pepsi employs 423 people in the city, it means that as much as 20% of its employees will be out of job due to a disastrous ordnance that was meant to provide additional municipal funding and instead will now lead to an increase in unemployment, coupled with a general decline in consumption, not to mention tax revenues for the city of Philadelphia.
The bottling giant sent out notices last Wednesday and said the layoffs would be spread over the next few months. “The layoffs come in response to the beverage tax, which has cut sales by 40 percent in the city, PepsiCo Inc.” spokesman Dave DeCecco said. ‘Unfortunately, after careful consideration of the economic realities created by the recently enacted beverage tax, we have been forced to give notice that we intend to eliminate 80 to 100 positions, including frontline and supervisory roles,’ DeCecco said.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.

Snap plunges 12% as Investor Group Attacks its No-Vote Shares

Top indices might refuse to include Snap’s shares.
The third day was not the charm. Not for Snap, the company that owns the Snapchat app. An investor revolt, spearheaded by the Council of Institutional Investors, against Snap’s non-voting class A shares is now deflating a big part of the hype around its IPO.
The hype worked like this: The market capitalization of Snap would be pushed so high that major indices, including the S&P 500 index and the MSCI USA Index, would include the stock, and that index and pension funds that track these indices would all have to buy the shares, and thus drive up the share price even further.
That was the bet. And now news of the revolt is spreading.
Snap’s class A Shares plunged 12.3% to $23.77 at the close on Monday. Down 16% from their high in the morning. Shares now trade below the price at which they opened on March 2 during their first moments in the public market.

This post was published at Wolf Street by Wolf Richter ‘ Mar 6, 2017.

A Third Of All U.S. Shopping Malls Are Projected To Close As ‘Space Available’ Signs Go Up All Over America

If you didn’t know better, you might be tempted to think that ‘Space Available’ was the hottest new retail chain in the entire country. As you will see below, it is being projected that about a third of all shopping malls in the United States will soon close, and we just recently learned that the number of ‘distressed retailers’ is the highest that it has been since the last recession. Honestly, I don’t know how anyone can possibly believe that the U. S. economy is in ‘good shape’ after looking at the retail industry. In my recent article about the ongoing ‘retail apocalypse’, I discussed the fact that Sears, J. C. Penney and Macy’s have all announced that they are closing dozens of stores in 2017, and you can find a pretty comprehensive list of 19 U. S. retailers that are ‘on the brink of bankruptcy’ right here. Needless to say, quite a bloodbath is going on out there right now.
But I didn’t realize how truly horrific things were for the retail industry until I came across an article about mall closings on Time Magazine’s website…

This post was published at The Economic Collapse Blog on March 6th, 2017.

“The Reality Is, Half Of Americans Can’t Afford To Write A $500 Check”

The CEO of Assurant appeared on Bloomberg TV to explain why demand for his services is likely to increase: the chief executive of the mobile phone insurer said he expects a surge in demand as carriers charge customers more to replace their devices. ‘If you think back five years ago, you as a consumer didn’t know how much that phone cost, you thought it was free or close to free,’ Assurant’s Alan Colberg said Monday. ‘Now you’re paying $600, that’s a lot. So we’ve actually seen the attachment rate, or the number of people buying the product, going up a little bit in the last couple of years.’
He then proceeded to give Bloomberg his traditional sales pitch: Assurant is counting on growth at its business covering phones and appliances to help counter a decline in the segment that insures foreclosed homes for lenders. While improvement in the real estate market has limited the number of vacant homes, Colberg said there are still many cash-strapped consumers.
It is what he said next that caught our attention: ‘The reality is, half of Americans can’t afford to write a $500 check,’ Colberg said. He spun that stunning statistic by saying that when US customers sign up for a cellular plan, they’re willing to buy protection in case ‘they lose that phone or something happens to it.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.

TSXV: From a PDAC Hangover to Sell in May and Go Away

A Monday Morning Musing from Mickey the Mercenary Geologist
In two previous missives, I documented the record and seasonality of the Toronto Venture Exchange (TSXV) since its inception in late 2001 (Mercenary Musing, June 13, 2016; Mercenary Musing, November 7, 2016). In the first musing, we demonstrated that there is strong seasonality to the TSXV Index throughout the year. In the second musing, we showed that tax-loss season offers a profitable short-term trading opportunity from mid-December to early January.
I now complete the trilogy with analysis of the TSXV Index over the five month period from January 1 to May 31.
We employ the same analytical methodology as in previous musings on the Toronto Venture Exchange Index. Our technique involves normalizing the Index value at zero on the first trading day of January for each of the 15 years and then plotting the percent change on a daily basis over the period in question.
Previously, we tabulated annual opening and closing values of the Toronto Venture Exchange Index and classified its yearly performances. Bull years (green) are defined as those in which the price closed the year > 10% higher than it opened; bear market years (red) as those in which the price closed the year >10% lower than it opened; and neutral years (black) as those in which the percent change was less than 10%:

This post was published at GoldSeek on March 06, 2017.

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts – The Wind in the Wires Made a Tattle-tale Sound

“The wind in the wires made a tattle-tale sound
And a wave broke over the railing,
And every man knew, as the captain did too,
T’was the witch of November come stealin.’
The dawn came late and the breakfast had to wait
When the gales of November came slashin.’
When afternoon came it was freezin’ rain
In the face of a hurricane west wind.
When suppertime came, the old cook came on deck sayin’
‘Fellas, it’s too rough to feed you.’
At seven pm a main hatchway caved in, he said
‘Fellas, it’s been good to know you.’
The captain wired in he had water comin’ in
And the good ship and crew was in peril.
And later that night when his lights went outta sight
Came the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.”
Gordon Lightfoot, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
Stocks were off a bit for most of the day as traders continued to ‘digest’ the recent run up in equity prices that culminated in the SNAP IPO.
As a reminder, there will be a Non-Farm Payrolls report this Friday for the month of February. The next week the markets fully expect the FOMC to raise interest rates 25 bp.
All things considered, we are now in the eighth year of this very labored ‘market recovery.’

This post was published at Jesses Crossroads Cafe on 06 MARCH 2017.

Wikileaks Releases Encrypted “Vault 7” Torrent, Will Unveil Password Tuesday 9am

Use a 'torrent' downloader on: '7z' to decrypt.
Passphrase will be made public at Tue 9am ET.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) March 7, 2017

Last month, following a series of seemingly random tweets by Wikileaks, we reported that starting on February 4th, each day Wikileaks began sending out a series of cryptic question Tweets teasing the world about ‘Vault 7′. The questions were framed in Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How format (but not in that order). Each came with an image ‘clue’.
Here they are in chronological order starting with the earliest.
What: The first tweet shows a picture of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. Where: The second tweet shows a picture of a vault in a former salt mine in Merkers, Germany where Nazis stored money, gold, paintings, and other valuables during World War II. This mine vault was captured by the United States in April 1945. When: The third tweet shows a picture of a Pratt & Whitney F119 airplane engine, which is the engine for the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor. The picture in the tweet was taken on April 9th, 2010 at Langley Air Force Base as part of a story published on April 12th about the soundproof “hush houses” used for jet engine testing.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.

Speculative Blow-Offs in Stock Markets – Part 2

Blow-Off Pattern Recognition
As noted in Part 1, historically, blow-patterns in stock markets share many characteristics. One of them is a shifting monetary backdrop, which becomes more hostile just as prices begin to rise at an accelerated pace, the other is the psychological backdrop to the move, which entails growing pressure on the remaining skeptics and helps investors to rationalize their exposure to overvalued markets. In addition to this, the chart patterns of stock indexes before and after blow-off moves are displaying noteworthy similarities as well.
‘On Margin’ – a late 1929 cartoon illustrating the widespread obsession with the stock market at the time. There was just a 10% margin requirement, i.e., investors could leverage their capital at a ratio of 10:1. The demand for margin credit was so strong, that it pushed call money lending rates in New York up quite noticeably. This in turn made it increasingly difficult to maintain extremely leveraged positions.
Why do we assume the current move is a speculative blow-off and not just another ‘normal’ up-leg? The main reasons are the speed and size of the move, the fact that it happens at the tail end of a very sizable advance that has already lasted a full eight years, the chart pattern, and above all, valuations.

This post was published at Acting-Man on March 6, 2017.

Hollande: “It Is My Ultimate Duty To Prevent A Le Pen Victory”

While French presidential polls remain volatile, and according to some, rather useless in light of the polling industry’s striking failure to forecast either Brexit or Trump’s victory, one person is looking beyond the daily headlines and gyrations, which have suggested a surge for Macron in recent weeks at the expense of FIllon …

… and warning that Marine Le Pen could win the forthcoming presidential election in France. That is the opinion of outgoing President Francois Hollande, who vowed on Monday to “do everything” in his power to stop it happening, adding it was his “ultimate duty” to prevent a Le Pen victory.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.

Do You Want to Restore Manufacturing Employment? Smash the Robots!

There has been much public discussion about the demise of US manufacturing jobs and policies to restore manufacturing employment. Indeed, as shown in Chart 1, in absolute as well as relative terms, US manufacturing employment has declined in the post-WWII era. In absolute terms, US manufacturing employment started falling precipitously in the 2000s and has been especially hard hit since the Great Recession. (Shaded areas in this and subsequent charts represent periods of economic recession.) US manufacturing employment relative to total US nonfarm employment has been trending lower throughout almost the entire post-WWII era. While relative manufacturing employment has been trending lower for almost 70 years, manufacturing’s relative contribution to total real GDP (see Chart 2), after ebbing during the 1980s and early 1990s, staged a resurgence in late 1990s until the Great Recession. Although foreign trade is being advanced by some as the reason for the secular decline in US manufacturing, I will argue that technology is the principal factor accounting for this phenomenon.

This post was published at FinancialSense on 03/06/2017.

They’re Worried You Might Buy Bitcoin or Gold – Precious Metals Supply and Demand

Bitcoin Mania
The price of gold has been rising, but perhaps not enough to suit the hot money. Meanwhile, the price of Bitcoin has shot up even faster. From $412, one year ago, to $1290 on Friday, it has gained over 200% (and, unlike gold, we can say that Bitcoin went up – it’s a speculative asset that goes up and down with no particular limit).
Compared to the price action in Bitcoin, gold seems boring. While this is a virtue for gold to be used as money (and a vice for Bitcoin), it does tend to attract those who just want to get into the hottest casino du jour.
Perhaps predictably, we saw an ad from a gold bullion dealer. This well-known dealer is comparing gold to Bitcoin, and urging customers to stick with gold because of gold’s potential for price appreciation. We would not recommend relying on this argument. Whatever the merits of gold may be, going up faster than Bitcoin is not among them.
We spotted another ad today from a mainstream financial adviser. The ad urged clients not to buy gold. This firm should have little need to worry. Stocks have been in a long, long, endless, forever, never-to-end bull market. Gold is not doing anything exciting now. $1234? ‘WhatEVAH (roll eyes)!’ Stocks, well, the prices just keep on going up. Like we said, nothing whatsoever to worry about. Other than declining dividend yields. There’s more than enough irony to go around.

This post was published at Acting-Man on March 6, 2017.

The Puzzle Pieces Are Coming Together & The Last Piece Is The Collapse Of The Economy- Episode 1221a

The following video was published by X22Report on Mar 6, 2017
Brexit reality, the EU wants a fee paid first. Pepsi lays off 20% because of a soda tax. The retail apocalypse is here, stores going bankrupt and sales for February are down. Core factory growth is down. The dumb money is now coming into the market as the insider leave the market. First it was UBS, then BofA now Citi and JP Morgan all saying the same thing, the second half of this year is going to be horrific. Get prepared for the collapse before its to late.

China’s Banking System Hits $33 Trillion, Overtaking The Eurozone As World’s Largest

Something historic, if largely unnoticed, took place at the end of 2016: China’s banking system surpassed that of the eurozone, becoming the world’s largest by assets, which according to the FT is a sign of both of the country’s increased influence in world finance and its reliance on debt to drive growth since the global financial crisis. It is also a confirmation that when it comes to interwoven, “Too Big To Fail” financial systems, nothing compares to China and that the onus is on Beijing to keep its banks viable and solvent at all costs.
Chinese bank assets, frequently discussed here and which are also the basis for Kyle Bass’ bearish stance on China, hit $33 trillion at the end of 2016, versus $31 trillion for the eurozone, $16 trillion for the US and $7 trillion for Japan. The value of China’s banking system is now more than 310% the size of its GDP, compared to “only” 280% for the eurozone and its banks.
Putting China’s banking dominance in context, 4 of the 5 largest global banks are now Chinese:

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.

Spain Needs Bigger Banks, Apparently

Not having learned a thing from merged banks that then collapsed.
Spain’s banking sector is about to be hit by a new wave of mergers and acquisitions, according to US rating agency Standard & Poor’s. The new phase of industry consolidation will begin with the stealth merger of largely state-owned Bankia with wholly state-owned Banco Mare Nostrum (BMN).
The two banks, each the product of two madcap mergers of Spain’s most insolvent savings banks, will be merged into one entity that is expected to become Spain’s fourth biggest bank by assets. The merger is more or less a done deal, for the simple reason that besides Bankia, BMN has no other suitors and its IPO last year was a complete dud. No private sector player seems willing to even touch its assets with a barge pole, let alone buy them at a ‘discount’.
‘Zero Synergies’
Two renowned Spanish economists, Daniel Lacalle and Javier Santacruz Cano, have already expressed serious reservations about the proposed operation. Most importantly, there are no synergies to be had, they argue, since Bankia already enjoys a strong presence in virtually all the regions where BMN is present.

This post was published at Wolf Street on Mar 6, 2017.

Deutsche Bank’s $8.5B Public Offering Sinks Like The German Battleship Tirpitz

Sink the Deutsche Bank by Johnny Horton:
The Germans had the biggest ship bank that had the biggest guns market share
On her deck were guns loans as big as steers and shells loan losses as big as trees
Deutsche Bank, Germany’s largest bank, announced a $8.5 billion public offering with another $2 billion expected to be raised from asset sales.

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on March 6, 2017.

Equity Markets at an Inflection Point

Around the turn of the century, a bandit rode in from Mexico, robbed a small Texas bank, and fled back across the border. A Texas Ranger picked up his trail and nabbed him in a Mexican village. The bandit spoke no English and the ranger no Spanish, so another villager was asked to interpret.
‘Ask him his name,’ said the ranger.
‘He says his name is Jose,’ said the interpreter.
‘Ask him if he admits robbing the bank.’
‘Yes, he admits it.’
‘Ask him where he hid the money.’
‘He won’t tell me.’
Leveling his pistol at Jose’s head the ranger said, ‘Now ask him again where he hid the money.’
Jose quickly blurted out in Spanish, ‘The money is hidden in the well in the village square.’
‘What did he say?’ demanded the ranger.
The interpreter replied, ‘Jose says he’s not afraid to die!’
The translation and interpretation of the news can play a crucial role on Wall Street.

This post was published at FinancialSense on 03/06/2017.

NYT’s Nick Kristof Urges IRS Employees To Illegally Leak Trump’s Tax Return

But if you're in IRS and have a certain president's tax return that you'd like to leak, my address is: NYT, 620 Eighth Ave, NY NY 10018. — Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) March 6, 2017

On Sunday evening, the New York Times’ columnist Nicholas Kristoff urged IRS employees Sunday to break the law, and leak Donald Trump’s tax returns to his publication: ‘If you’re in IRS and have a certain president’s tax return that you’d like to leak, my address is: NYT, 620 Eighth Ave, NY NY 10018,’ Nicholas Kristof wrote on Twitter.
As the Hill reminds us, the release of an individual’s unauthorized tax returns is a felony. While reporters who publish illegally obtained information that they did not solicit are traditionally not prosecuted – recall that in September 2016 the NYT released an old Trump tax return without legal consequences- the legal picture becomes less clear if the reporters are involved in the leaking of the information.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.

The State of US State Exports

A domestic political battle is brewing in the United States between President Donald Trump’s administration and the Republican Party over the president’s economic plans. Trump’s key economic positions during his campaign included his opposition to free trade deals, his promise not to cut Social Security and Medicare, and his support of large-scale infrastructure spending. These are all positions that have clashed with general Republican orthodoxy. They were also the reason that some Bernie Sanders supporters found themselves nodding in unexpected agreement with Trump’s proposed policies.
We can bring one key insight to this conversation as the battle lines are being drawn. It is extremely difficult to speak of the US economy as an undifferentiated whole. The US has varied economic interests at both the regional and state levels. This makes it extremely difficult to find a one-size-fits-all policy that can fix every problem.
This is not only true for the US – almost all large countries (and even some small ones) are highly regionalized. It is also not to say that national economic statistics are useless – they can be used to make important observations about the overall performance of a national economy, especially in terms of the economic power of a given country. But too often, discussion of the US economy focuses disproportionately on the national level and not enough on the regional.

This post was published at Mauldin Economics on MARCH 6, 2017.

BIS Admits TARGET2 Is A Stealth Bailout Of Europe’s Periphery

While debates over the significance of the Eurosystem’s TARGET2 imbalances may have faded into the background now that sovereign yields in the Eurozone remains broadly backstopped by the ECB’s debt monetization generosity, and fears about an imminent European breakdown fall along the lines of populist votes more than concerns about lack of funding, the BIS has finally chimed in with the truth about what the TARGET2 number really showed.
As a reminder, in mid 2012, financial pundits “discovered” the gaping imbalances building up within the Eurozone, as a result of a huge increase in TARGET2 claims at the Bundesbank, offset by a matched surge in liabilities across the European periphery, most notably Italy and Spain.
At the time, most conventional economists and analysts, especially those based in Europe, and certainly the ECB, said to ignore the divergence as it was irrelevant. Others, such as Hans Werner Sinn, and this site, warned that TARGET2 is a “less than thinly veiled bailout for Europe’s periphery” as the stealth fund flow amounted to a financing of peripheral obligations, illegal under European rules.
Then, at the end of January, it was none other than Mario Draghi who, almost 5 years later, made the first tacit admission that the skeptics were right when he explained to Italian lawmakers that a country could leave the euro zone but only first it would need to settle its debts with the bloc’s TARGET2 (T2) payments system.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 6, 2017.