Elon Musk Launches Company To Hook Up People To Computers

In case revolutionizing the transportation and energy industries while colonizing Mars wasn’t enough of a challenge for Elon Musk (or perhaps taxpayer subsidies for Musk’s ventures in those fields have dried up) in his latest venture the billionaire entrepreneur now “wants to merge computers with human brains to help people keep up with machines.” Specifically, the WSJ has uncovered that Musk has launched another company called Neuralink, which is pursuing what Musk calls ‘neural lace’ technology, which is shorthand for a brain-computer interface and consists of implanting tiny brain electrodes that will one day be able upload and download thoughts.
Think the 2014 Johnny Depp movie Transcendence.
Musk has taken an active role setting up the California-based company and may play a significant leadership role, according to people briefed on Neuralink’s plans, a bold step for a father of five who already runs two technologically complex businesses. While Musk did not comment on the story, Max Hodak, who said he is a ‘member of the founding team,’ confirmed not only the company’s existence but also Musk’s involvement. “He described the company as ‘embryonic’ and said plans are still in flux but declined to provide additional details. Mr. Hodak previously founded Transcriptic, a startup that provides robotic lab services accessible over the internet.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts – Psychopathia Kleptocratus

Stock futures were sharply lower overnight, as the first reaction to the failure of the Trump Healthcare Bill failed badly on Friday.
Gold and silver were rallying up to overhead resistance.
But as usual, the buyers came back in and brought stocks back up to nearly unchanged, or higher in the case of big cap tech.
Nevertheless, the Dow and SP 500 finished in the red, extending the longest streak of down days in the broader US stock markets since 2011.
Now the ball is back in The Donald’s court. Will he be able to cut taxes for large corporations and wealthy individuals without the ability to point to savings from the ‘reform’ of healthcare.
Stay tuned. This looks like an interesting year.

This post was published at Jesses Crossroads Cafe on 27 MARCH 2017.

The Chaos Continues As Banks Begin To Crash – Episode 1239a

The following video was published by X22Report on Mar 27, 2017
UK is entering meltdown mode, inflation surges. Italy is a on the edge of a major problem. Brussels slaps the UK with a 100 billion bill for an EU Army. Over half American cities are filled with renters. Dallas Fed misses, its declining once again. This is how you know we are in a bubble, Tony Robbins and Suze Orman are back selling how to make money. During the next financial crisis pensions are going to be at the center of it all. The entire market is in chaos and the banks are crashing at the same time, will this continue.

Bill Gross Awarded $81 Million In PIMCO Lawsuit Settlement

Bill Gross and his former employer PIMCO announced that they have reached an amicable settlement of the breach-of-contract lawsuit filed by Mr. Gross in October 2015, under which Gross would reportedly be awarded $81 million.
In a statement regarding the settlement, Gross repeated that his lawsuit had never been about money. Although the settlement’s terms are confidential, Gross and PIMCO confirmed that any proceeds from the suit will be donated to charity, as Gross had promised since the beginning of the suit. ‘I’ve always been amazed by my success, and grateful for the opportunity to make a difference in the world. I’m glad that can continue today,’ Mr. Gross noted.
As the WSJ adds, Gross intends to donate the proceeds to charity through his Bill and Sue Gross Family Foundation. Gross alleged that Pimco ‘wrongly and illegally’ denied him hundreds of millions of dollars in earned compensation and damaged his reputation.
As a reminder, Gross abruptly left Pimco in September 2014 amid tensions with his colleagues, most notably Mohamed El-Erian, and in 2015 sued the manager for at least $200 million in damages, alleging he was forced out. Gross alleged that Pimco ‘wrongly and illegally’ denied him hundreds of millions of dollars in earned compensation and damaged his reputation. ‘Driven by a lust for power, greed, and a desire to improve their own financial position and reputation at the expense of investors and decency,’ the suit says, ‘a cabal’ of Pimco ‘managing directors plotted to drive founder Bill Gross out of Pimco.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

Is a Stock Market Crash Coming Now That the Trump Agenda Stalled?

The ‘Trump Rally’ drove the Dow up 16% between Election Day and March 1, when it hit an all-time high of 21,115. But today the Dow opened down 172 points, or nearly 1%, from Friday’s close after Republicans failed to repeal and replace Obamacare.
As the Trump agenda stalls, investors are worried a stock market crash is coming…
And investors are right to consider the possibility of a stock market crash in 2017.
Today (March 27), the CBOE Volatility Index jumped 1.5% to hit its 2017 high of 14.86. The ‘VIX’ measures how much volatility traders are expecting on the stock market. The higher it goes, the more fearful traders are getting.
And that fear level is rising because the ‘Trump Rally’ sent stocks to perilous highs and the optimism that inflated stock prices is coming to an abrupt end…
Why the Healthcare Bill Has Investors Preparing for a Stock Market Crash
Since Donald Trump won the presidency on Nov. 8, the Dow smashed through the 20,000 and 21,000 levels in its fastest 1,000-point jump in history. And it ended February on a string of 12 straight record-high closes.

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on March 27, 2017.

How To Beat Warren Buffett Working Just 40 Days A Year

Want to beat Warren Buffett’s investment returns? Don’t want to spend a lot of time working at it? Bloomberg’s macro strategist Cameron Crise has just the investment process for you…
Last week I wrote about a simple model that is surprisingly effective at profiting from the rebalancing tendencies of passive investors. This in turn brought to mind another well-known instance of behavioral herding that has led to consistent profits — the so-called ‘pre-FOMC drift,’ wherein U. S. equities tend to rally just before and just after FOMC meetings.
What would happen if we combined the rebalancing model with a strategy designed to profit from the pre-FOMC drift? I assessed the performance of going long the S&P 500 on the close two days before each FOMC meeting and exiting the trade on the close of each FOMC day. In measuring the historical performance of such a model, it’s important that we don’t include any forward-looking information. Some of the best daily S&P 500 returns have come on days featuring intra-meeting easings. Alas, we have to exclude them from our study given our inability to pre-position for them.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.


Gold: $1255.40 UP $7.20
Silver: $18.08 UP 36 cents
Closing access prices:
Gold $1254.50
silver: $18.10!!!
Premium of Shanghai 2nd fix/NY:$11.80
LONDON FIRST GOLD FIX: 5:30 am est 1256.90
For comex gold:
For silver:
For silver: MARCH
Total number of notices filed so far this month: 3795 for 18,975,000 oz
We have now entered options expiry week so expect gold and silver to be subdued from today forward.
The comex options expiry is tomorrow, Tuesday March 28.
The OTC/LBMA options expiry is the morning of March 31.
Expect, extreme volatility. If China and Russia are ready, they will probably pick up much physical gold if the bankers whack hard.
Tomorrow I will report on the new OI figures which is the result of trading today. Expect the OI for gold to advance by about 20,000 contracts and silver by about 6,000 contracts.
Let us have a look at the data for today

This post was published at Harvey Organ Blog on March 27, 2017.

Paul Ryan “Begged On One Knee” For Obamacare Repeal Vote

In September 2008, Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson reportedly begged House speaker Nancy Pelosi on one knee to support his bailout plan.
The day began with an agreement that Washington hoped would end the financial crisis that has gripped the nation. It dissolved into a verbal brawl in the Cabinet Room of the White House, urgent warnings from the president and pleas from a Treasury secretary who knelt before the House speaker and appealed for her support…

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

Google’s DeepMind Wants to Enter the Grid

At the beginning of the year, we wrote about Alphabet’s [NASDAQ: GOOG] acquisition of a British artificial intelligence (AI) startup called DeepMind. DeepMind made headlines last year when its AlphaGo program defeated the champion go player Lee Sedol of South Korea, then the second-ranked go player in the world. It has since defeated the world’s top player, although only in informal online play.
AlphaGo showcases DeepMind’s transformative approach to AI: machine learning that emulates human learning. Traditional approaches to computer chess, for example, rely on brute force – working out all the permutations of possible future moves to identify the most promising next move to make. That approach is limited because the number of permutations gets so large as the program looks more and more moves ahead. It’s even more limited with the game of go because there are so much more possible moves than there are in chess. The ‘decision tree’ quickly gets far too large to exhaustively examine and evaluate. That’s why until last year, most experts thought it would be decades before a computer program could compete with world-class go masters. They were waiting for new hardware that could crunch the numbers faster. But DeepMind delivered with revolutionary software instead.

This post was published at FinancialSense on 03/27/2017.

‘Big Short’ 2017: When the Auto Industry Implodes

The first line of The Wall Street Journal’s March 21 story sums up the trend:
‘The auto finance sector has taken a bad turn.’
‘The auto finance sector just ran a red light and is about to T-bone a minivan’ would’ve been more accurate.
We first wrote about the coming carnage in U. S. auto finance in December.
Now the story’s catching on. There’s big trouble in the U. S. auto market.
That means there are also huge profit chances ahead, if you know what to do.
According to the WSJ, Ally Financial, one of the biggest auto finance companies, said defaults on auto loans for low-credit borrowers are still increasing.
As I wrote in December, Experian’s market tracking shows that up to 40% of all auto debt in America today is ‘nonprime’ or worse.
Let’s take a closer look at what that means.
The more nonprime auto debt out there floating around, the higher the likelihood of defaults.
That means more car repos.

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on March 27, 2017.

30Y Treasury Yield Back Below 3.00% As Shorts Squeezed To Lowest Since November

10Y yields are back below 2.40% and 30Y below 3.00% as the post-rate-hike curve collapse continues, aided by the biggest short-squeeze since Brexit sending speculative Treasury shorts to their lowest since November.
The lofty fiscal expectations surrounding President Donald Trump have begun to subside.
Bond bears are having major second thoughts.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

SWOT Analysis: Why Exploration Budgets Are On the Rise

The best performing precious metal for the week was palladium, up 4.22 percent on improving expectations for the automotive industry where palladium is principally used to clean gasoline emissions. According to ZeroHedge, a new trend is gaining popularity in China – digital gold ‘gifting.’ Tencent’s digital gold packets, known as microgold, are backed by the country’s biggest bank and allow users to send funds that track the real-time value of gold over the WeChat platform. An ICBC document shows that during the Lunar New Year, WeChat users sent 70,000 microgold packets across the platform worth $14.5 million. Gold ETFs recorded inflows over the past two days totaling nearly 9 tons, reports Commerzbank, reversing more than half of outflows previously seen this month. Noting a drop in net long positions to their lowest level since the beginning of the year during the run-up to the Fed meeting, one analyst wrote that this means there is ample upside potential for gold. As seen in the chart below, we are seeing the longest losing run for the dollar since November, reports Bloomberg, as gold advanced to its highest level in three weeks on haven demand amid a global selloff in stocks.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 27 March 2017.

SocGen Reveals The Best Trading Strategy Of The Year

Despite the recent modest drop in stocks, the S&P remains just shy of all time highs, and near valuations which according to Goldman are at nosebleed levels and which market participants recently admitted are the most overvalued since 2000. Furthermore, with the market seemingly finding itself painfully rangebound in a world where until recently volatility was non-existent, traders desperate for alpha, have been scrambling for a strategy that produces a steady stream of profits.
One such trade was proposed overnight by SocGen’s Andrew Lapthorne, who notes that “the only strategy to stand out this year is short-term (1 month) price reversal, which involves selling last month’s winner and buying the losers.”
Here is his overnight note, according to which “Outperformance of reversal strategies points to a market struggling for direction”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

Having Missed Friday’s Move, Gartman Is Looking To “Reestablish Net Short Positions”

On Friday morning, ahead of Congressional and market rollercoaster resulting from the Republicans’ failure to repeal Obamacare, we reported that Dennis Gartman had “moved to the sidelines” and covered his recent short:
Regarding positioning… and please do remember that the only money we manage is our own retirement fund and although it is only a few small millions it is still our money and we do indeed value it!… we came into yesterday’s session modestly net short of equities. However considering that the passage or non-passage of the health care legislation was a veritable coin toss circumstance we moved to cover those short derivatives positions early in the day and took to the sidelines. We remain there this morning. In our retirement account are long of several monthly dividend paying closed end short term bond funds; we are long of gold in EUR and Yen denominated terms and at the very close of trading yesterday we took small ‘punts’ on the long side of crude oil.
Fast forward to Monday morning, when Gartman had this to say about the overnight action:

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

The Panic Is On – First Effects Showing Up

New home sales totaled 49,000 units in February, according to an estimate released today by the Census Bureau. That number is the actual number of sales during the month as estimated by the Bureau. It was not seasonally adjusted (NSA). It was derived from housing starts and permits data, along with a tiny sample survey of US home builders. That estimate will be revised on each monthly release over the next 4 months. Those revisions can be quite large.
The 49,000 sales were 4,000 units, or 8.9%, greater than a year ago. The 8.9% increase shows the growth rate accelerating. It was at zero just 2 months before. That was the lowest growth rate of the past 12 months. The high was a 25.7% year over year gain in September. That was not an outlier. The year over year gain in July was 25.6%. The market was blowing off in the third quarter thanks to all time record low mortgage rates of 3.4%. That compares with 4.2% today.
February sales were 8,000 higher than January or a difference of 19.5%. That compares with a gain of 15.4% in February 2016, with that month having an extra day thanks to leap year. The average February gain from 2006 to 2016 was 4,300 units or 13%. This February’s increase was greater than 8 of the 10 preceding Februaries. However, we have to take this month’s number with a grain of salt, since it is subject to a large revision next month and a smaller one in ensuing months. It may not have been as ‘good’ as it currently looks.

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on March 27, 2017.

‘Soft’ Data Slump Continues – Dallas Fed Misses, Tumbles Most In 14 Months

Following disappointing Manufacturing and Services PMIs last week, this week has not started well for the hope embedded in ‘soft’ survey data. After six straight months higher, The Dallas Fed Manufacturing Outlook slumped in March (down 7.6pts to 16.9). This is the biggest drop since Jan 2016 and was lower than all estimates.
New Orders, Inventories, and number of employees all tumbled. Prices Paid and Received fell (but the latter consierably more than the former).

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Mar 27, 2017.

Health-Care Industry Debt Turns into ‘Systemic Recession Risk’

Debt binge hits its limit, with big impact on overall economy.
Sector booms and busts have historically been driven by speculation and over-borrowing, often triggering regional or even national recessions. Textbook examples include the 2014 Energy and 2008 Financial sector collapse. In both of these instances, fallacies such as perpetual $100 oil and ever rising home prices drove rampant speculation, overinvestment, and unsustainable debt buildup.
So warns John Burns Real Estate Consulting, in a new paper, ‘Industries at Risk and Implications for Housing.’
This time, three sectors stand out where ‘a similar pattern of unsustainable growth has driven rapid expansion’ since the end of the Great Recession: technology, automotive (whose current travails I keep dissecting), and health care.
But health care poses the biggest ‘systemic recession risk’ to the US economy, according to the report. After employment in the sector has soared 113% since 1990, it accounts for 16% of private sector jobs, up from 10% in 1990.
[T]thus a correction to the industry will likely cause a slowdown for the national economy. Several large housing markets have an even bigger concentration of jobs tied to the Health Care industry and will be disproportionately hit by a Health Care slowdown, including: Philadelphia, Boston, New York, and Nashville

This post was published at Wolf Street on Mar 27, 2017.