US Credit Card Debt Rises Above $1 Trillion As Student, Auto Loans Hit All Time High

Earlier in 2017, using the latest Fed data newspapers and financial media reported that US consumer credit card debt had risen above $1 trillion for the first time since the financial crisis. Ironically, just a few months later the Fed revised its data series sending the revolving credit total back under this “psychological number.” At least until today, when the latest consumer credit update from the Fed disclosed that in September, consumer credit rose by $20.8 billion, more than the $17.5 billion expected, of which $14.4 billion was non-revolving, auto and student loans, and $6.4 billion was credit card debt. Total consumer credit rose by 6.6% Y/Y, rising to $3.788 trillion as of Sept. 30. This was the single biggest monthly increase since November 2016.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

Is There A Housing Bubble In Your City?

My analysis below highlights how out of scope house prices are from end-user, shelter-buyer, employment & income fundamentals in the most economically important cities.
This massive divergence has been driven largely from the things present in all bubbles; unorthodox capital, credit & liquidity driving speculation.
Like Bubble 1.0, house prices in the most lofty regions have been driven for years by ‘non-end-users’ SPECULATING on rentals, second/vaca homes, and flipping – riding a wave of cheap & easy credit, liquidity & leverage – believing prices always go up.
While speculative cycles come & go, end-user, shelter-buyer demand is omnipresent. And end-user employment, income & credit fundamentals are what house prices will ultimately gravitate to.
With between 40% & 50% of buyers putting less than 10% down for years – and because it takes at least 10% equity to sell & rebuy – it doesn’t take much downside to swamp the nation in ‘effective negative equity’ once again.
ITEM 1) INCOME INCREASE NEEDED TO BUY THE MEDIAN PRICED HOUSE IN KEY CITIES.
Bottom Line: On a ‘national’ basis, it doesn’t look too badly. But, most of the most economically important US cities are experiencing ‘BUBBLE-LIKE’ conditions again.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

NOV 7/THE HIGH SILVER OPEN INTEREST FORCES THE BANKERS TO INITIATE ANOTHER RAID TODAY/GOLD DOWN $4.75 AND SILVER DOWN 27 CENTS/ITALY’S TARGET 2 IMBALANCE AT A RECORD 433 BILLION EUROS WHICH CAN N…

GOLD: $1275.40 DOWN $4.75
Silver: $16.95 DOWN 27 cents
Closing access prices:
Gold $1275.40
silver: $16.95
SHANGHAI GOLD FIX: FIRST FIX 10 15 PM EST (2:15 SHANGHAI LOCAL TIME)
SECOND FIX: 2:15 AM EST (6:15 SHANGHAI LOCAL TIME)
SHANGHAI FIRST GOLD FIX: $1293.86 DOLLARS PER OZ
NY PRICE OF GOLD AT EXACT SAME TIME: $1279.85
PREMIUM FIRST FIX: $14.01(premiums getting smaller)
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SECOND SHANGHAI GOLD FIX: $1285.00
NY GOLD PRICE AT THE EXACT SAME TIME: $1279.00
Premium of Shanghai 2nd fix/NY:$6.00 PREMIUMS GETTING smaller)
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LONDON FIRST GOLD FIX: 5:30 am est $1276.35
NY PRICING AT THE EXACT SAME TIME: $1276.30
LONDON SECOND GOLD FIX 10 AM: $1275.60
NY PRICING AT THE EXACT SAME TIME. 1276.95 ??
For comex gold:
NOVEMBER/
NOTICES FILINGS TODAY FOR OCT CONTRACT MONTH: 110 NOTICE(S) FOR 11000 OZ.
TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR: 966 FOR 96,600 OZ (3.004TONNES)
For silver:
NOVEMBER
7 NOTICE(S) FILED TODAY FOR
35,000 OZ/
Total number of notices filed so far this month: 863 for 4,315,000 oz
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Bitcoin: $7174 bid /$7199 offer up $244.00 (MORNING)
BITCOIN CLOSING;$7099 BID:7124. OFFER down $124.00
end
Let us have a look at the data for today
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In silver, the total open interest ROSE BY A HUGE 3562 contracts from 204 ,938 DOWN TO 208,500 WITH YESTERDAY’S TRADING IN WHICH SILVER ROSE BY A CONSIDERABLE 37 CENTS. THE CROOKS NO DOUBT ARE PULLING THEIR HAIR AS THEY ARE STILL HAVING AN AWFUL TIME TRYING TO COVER THEIR MASSIVE SILVER SHORTS. THEY TRY TO CONTINUE WITH THEIR TORMENT WITH NO APPRECIABLE FALL IN SILVER OI. YESTERDAY HUGE NUMBERS OF NEWBIE SPEC LONGS ENTERED THE SILVER ARENA TO WHICH OUR BANKERS DUTIFULLY SUPPLIED.
RESULT: A HUGE SIZED RISE IN OI COMEX WITH THE CONSIDERABLE 37 CENT PRICE GAIN. NEWBIE SPEC LONGS ENTERED THE ARENA AND THESE GUYS WERE DUTIFULLY SUPPLIED BY OUR CROOKED BANKERS. THERE WAS NO SHORTCOVERING YESTERDAY.
In ounces, the OI is still represented by just OVER 1 BILLION oz i.e. 1.042 BILLION TO BE EXACT or 149% of annual global silver production (ex Russia & ex China).
FOR THE NEW FRONT OCT MONTH/ THEY FILED: 7 NOTICE(S) FOR 35,000 OZ OF SILVER
In gold, the open interest ROSE BY A LARGER THAN EXPECTED 8303 CONTRACTS WITH THE GOOD SIZED RISE IN PRICE OF GOLD ($11.25) WITH YESTERDAY’S TRADING . The new OI for the gold complex rests at 537,727. NEWBIE LONGS RE-ENTERED THE ARENA TO WHICH THE BANKERS DUTIFULLY SUPPLIED THE NECESSARY SHORT PAPER..
NO EFP’S WERE ISSUED FOR THE NOVEMBER CONTRACT MONTH.
Result: A GOOD SIZED INCREASE IN OI WITH THE RISE IN PRICE IN GOLD ($11.25). WE HAD ZERO BANK SHORT COVERING AS ANY OF OUR NEWBIE LONGS RE-ENTERED THE GOLD COMEX AREA TO WHICH OUR BANKERS DUTIFULLY SUPPLIED THE NECESSARY SHORT PAPER.
we had: 110 notice(s) filed upon for 11,000 oz of gold.
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With respect to our two criminal funds, the GLD and the SLV:
GLD:
A huge change in gold inventory at the GLD/ a withdrawal of 1.48 tonnes
Inventory rests tonight: 844.27 tonnes.
SLV
TODAY WE HAD NO CHANGE IN SILVER INVENTORY AT THE SLV
INVENTORY RESTS AT 319.018 MILLION OZ

This post was published at Harvey Organ Blog on November 8, 2017.

How Many Mass Shooters Have Been Members Of The NRA?

The left is using the tragedy in Sutherland Springs to demonize the NRA. Personally, I am so sick and tired of these relentless attacks, and I am proud to stand with the NRA, the Gun Owners Of America and every other organization that is working hard to defend our 2nd Amendment rights. As you will see below, it was actually the intervention of an NRA instructor named Stephen Willeford that saved countless lives in Sutherland Springs. And would you like to know how many mass shooters have been members of the NRA? The answer is zero…
Based on the arbitrary definition of a shooting involving at least four deaths, there had been 130 mass shootings in the United States as of June 6, 2017, going back over the last 51 years. (This does not include gang killings, killings that began as other crimes such as robberies, and killings that involved only the shooter’s family.)
Information about how the guns were obtained is incomplete, but 248 different guns were used, at least 141 of which were obtained legally and at least 39 of which were obtained illegally; handguns were the most common weapons used, usually more than one, each of which takes about two seconds to reload, making limited magazines (commonly incorrectly referred to as ‘clips’) a minor inconvenience. None of the shooters were known to be members of the NRA.

This post was published at The Economic Collapse Blog on November 7th, 2017.

Gold And The Big Four: Slam Dunk

The synergistic relationship between gold and economic growth is quite healthy, and poised to become even more healthy in 2018 – 2019. Please click here now. Double-click to enlarge this fabulous South Korean stock market ETF chart. Big name Western money managers are finally racing to move money into Asian markets, and this is great news for both gold and global stock markets. For several years I’ve recommended that the gold community slightly reduce (but not drop) their focus on gold’s Western world fear trade and increase their focus on the Eastern stock markets and the love trade for gold. South Korea’s stock market sports 50% earnings growth and a P/E ratio of just 10! Japan’s market is also red hot, and so are the markets of China and India. US markets have risen strongly, but with anemic economic growth and nosebleed valuations. Growth is vastly stronger in Asia, but without European and US money manager participation, Asian stock markets have previously languished. This situation has changed dramatically in 2017, and 2018 should see an acceleration of this new trend. The bottom line: American markets are hot but overvalued. Asian markets are red hot but not overvalued. I own ETFs (and some individual stocks) in the ‘Big Four’ Asian markets; India, China, Japan, and Korea. I urge all Western gold bugs to ‘get with the (good) times’. The fear trade for gold will never disappear, but it’s a new era, and this new era is dominated by Asia. Investors should be very comfortable owning Asian stock markets and gold…at the same time. The bottom line: America isn’t out, but Asia is in! When times are good (and they are now very good in Asia), Asians buy more gold. Exponentially more. Chinese demand reflects this fact. It’s rising again; demand is up almost 20% over 2016, and poised to rise even more strongly in 2018.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 7 November 2017.

Ron Paul: Republican Tax Plan Increases the Most Insidious Tax

Ron Paul has identified an increase in what he calls the ‘most insidious tax’ buried in the GOP tax reform bill.
A lot of Americans have put a lot of hope in tax reform. As Peter Schiff said in a recent Fox Business interview, the prospect of economic growth spurred by tax reform and other Trump policies have generated a great deal of optimism. But the question remains: can the GOP Congress deliver? And even if Congress does get a reform package passed, some question whether it will actually lead to the economic growth promised. Absent spending cuts, the tax plan will increase the federal debt even further. Evidence indicates high debt levels retard growth.
In a recent article published on the Mises Wire, Ron Paul identified another problem with the Republican tax plan. It actually increases the most insidious of all taxes – the ‘inflation tax.’
Paul acknowledged the tax plan has some positive elements such as increasing the standard deduction, creating a new family tax credit, eliminating the death tax, reducing the corporate tax rate, and lowering taxes on small businesses.

This post was published at Schiffgold on NOVEMBER 7, 2017.

Tariffs on Your Roof

The US is about to fire another salvo in the international trade war, and this one may actually make sense.
That’s because the US government will, if President Trump approves, help an industry it almost destroyed a few years ago.
Is it ‘protectionism’ to restore the balance that existed before government intervened?
Maybe not. But stranger yet, this one puts the Trump administration and environmentalist groups on the same side.
They say politics makes strange bedfellows. Trade policy does too… and it points to an investment trend you should follow.
Subsidizing Your Own Competitors
In Connecting the Dots, I try to find stories that fit together in unexpected ways. Sometimes I don’t even have to look.
Two weeks ago, I wrote about free trade and manufacturing jobs. Last week’s topic was renewable energy. Today, we have all three.

This post was published at Mauldin Economics on NOVEMBER 7, 2017.

“One Simple Reason The Yield Curve Is Collapsing”

The divergence between the ‘hope’ melt-up in stock markets and the ‘nope’ collapse of the US Treasury yield curve has never been so wide… and has never engendered so many excuses by commission-takers and asset-gatherers for why the latter is wrong and the former correct.
One thing is clear, as The Fed tightens rates, the market is increaingly insensitive to the next tightening as financial conditions have eased dramatically as the Fed tightens. Former fund manager Richard Breslow suspects ‘you ain’t seen nothing yet’ as the linkage between FOMC raising rates and a flattening yield curve suggests this tradable trend is far from over.
Via Bloomberg,
The yield curve in the Treasury market has continued on its flattening way. Look at a one-year chart and it shows a relentless, if at times choppy, move from its widest at the beginning of the period to today’s new tight. Everyone seems to have their theories why and what it means, giving clear proof that great minds can differ. And even the bond market isn’t simply well-established science. One thing that they do agree upon is the obvious: it’s been a clear, tradable trend. But before we start waxing eloquent on the historic magnitude of the move, keep in mind, this tightening absolutely pales in comparison to several others of the last 25 years.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

A Different Powelling – Precious Metals Supply and Demand Report

New Chief Monetary Bureaucrat Goes from Good to Bad for Silver
The prices of the metals ended all but unchanged last week, though they hit spike highs on Thursday. Particularly silver his $17.24 before falling back 43 cents, to close at $16.82.
It was not a gentle fall back. In about an hour and fifteen minutes on Friday morning (as we Arizonans reckon the time), the price of silver dropped from $17.16 to $16.76. Was this a case of the infamous manipulation we’ve all read about? We can’t tell you who did it, but we can show you a clear picture of what happened.
In any case, it seems that either Fed chairman appointee Powell is not good for silver, or else that the price of silver has little to do with continuation of current Fed (central) planning.
Fundamental Developments
We will look at intraday gold and silver supply and demand fundamentals. But first, here are the charts of the prices of gold and silver, and the gold-silver ratio.

This post was published at Acting-Man on November 7, 2017.

Stock and Awe, Bears in Bondage

The Trump Rally pushed ahead relentlessly through a summer full of high omens and great disasters, all which it swatted off like flies. Even so, all was not perfect in the market as nerves began to jitter midsummer beneath the surface even among the most longtime bulls. Wall Street’s fear gauge (the CBOE Volatility Index) lifted its needle off its lower post to a nine-month high after President Trump’s comments about ‘fire and fury’ if North Korea didn’t toe the line. (Mind you, the high wasn’t very far off the post because of how placid the previous nine months had been.)
As volatility stirred languidly over the threat of nuclear war, stock prices took a little spill with all major stock indices seeing their biggest one-day drop since May. The SPX fall amounted to a 1.4% drop in a day – nothing damaging. The Dow dropped about 1% in a day. But beneath the surface, the market is looking different and shakier.
For example, trading narrowed to fewer players as more stocks in the Nasdaq 100 finally moved below their fifty-two week lows than moved above them. Likewise in the S&P. This phenomenon is known as the ‘Hindenburg omen,’ and tends to precede major crashes.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 7 November 2017.

Interview with Felix Zulauf on China and Late-Stage Market Melt-Up

FS Insider recently interviewed Felix Zulauf, a longtime member of Barron’s Roundtable and the head of Zulauf Consulting, to get an update on his market outlook. Here’s what he had to say…
For audio, see
Felix Zulauf on Market Melt-Up, China, and More
Late-Cycle Sentiment Emerging, Melt-Up Likely
‘I really think that we are seeing the beginning signs of a melt-up in parts of the stock market,’ he said. ‘Because it’s late-stage, I do not know how long the market will run. I think sometime in the first half [of 2018] we will see the peak.’
This cycle peak is difficult to judge, however, because conditions are so abnormal, Zulauf stated. In a normal cycle, the peak usually comes when inflation rates go up, central banks begin to tighten, the economy is running on all cylinders, and corporate profits are strong.
We see some of these signs now, but not all of them. Fed tightening is an exception among other central banks, Zulauf noted. And other risks appear to be rising, he added.
‘Markets are not always a one-to-one reflection of economic reality,’ he said. ‘There are many other factors. The cycle is very old, and there are a lot of geopolitical issues that are very fragile and could go in the wrong direction.’
Near-Term Conditions Deteriorating
The US consumer isn’t in great shape, Zulauf noted. We do see rising real income, but the savings rate has dropped to a multi-year low recently, he noted.

This post was published at FinancialSense on 11/07/2017.

“He Loves Things Splendid And Magnificent”: Beloved Trump Set For Hero’s Welcome By Chinese Super Fans

Despite his constant threats to label China a currency manipulator last summer and endless complaints about the U. S. trade deficit with the manufacturing giant, President Trump is apparently a legend in China. As Reuters notes this morning, Trump is expected to receive a hero’s welcome tomorrow when he arrives in Beijing from adoring Chinese fans who admire that “he loves things splendid and magnificent” and that he “loves to show off.”
On platforms such as the Twitter-like Sina Weibo, Trump’s Chinese supporters, who admire his business success and a free-wheeling style unconstrained by political correctness, are far more prominent than detractors.
While no comprehensive survey has been done to assess the size and intensity of Trump’s popularity in China, several pundits suggest he has broad and vocal support.
‘Chinese people are impressed that he is extremely rich, he loves things splendid and magnificent, and he loves to show off. Not every billionaire is like that.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

Class Warfare: people are out for blood

Roughly two thousand years ago, the government of ancient Rome was facing a serious problem.
The tributium capitus, or poll tax, they had imposed across their provinces was becoming unpopular.
And there was a growing minority of Roman subjects who felt they were being forced to pay an overly burdensome and disproportionately high tax bill.
Things got so bad that there were small revolts, especially in one of Rome’s critical eastern provinces where many simply refused to pay.
Eventually the authorities were able to round up the leader of the movement – a youthful, charismatic local artisan who was brought before the provincial prefecture.
After reviewing the evidence, though, the prefecture found that the leader had actually done nothing illegal… and according to ancient texts, announced to the public:
‘I have examined him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against him. . .’

This post was published at Sovereign Man on November 7, 2017.

JOLTS: Hiring Slides To Lowest In 6 Months As Job Openings Remain Near All Time High

After a burst of record high job openings which started in June and eased modestly in August, today’s September JOLTS report – Janet Yellen’s favorite labor market indicator – showed another modest increase in job openings across most categories in the hurricane-affected month, with the total number rising fractionally 6.090MM to 6.093MM, above the 6.091MM estimate, resulting in an unchanged Sept. job opening rate of 4%. Still, after nearly two years of being rangebound between 5.5 and 6 million, the latest job openings number confirms that there may be a “breakout” about what was the previous resistance level, as increasingly more jobs remain unfilled in a labor market where skill shortages and labor imbalances are becoming structural.
The number of job openings was little changed for total private and for government. Job openings increased in professional and business services (+156,000), other services (+52,000), state and local government education (+36,000), and federal government (+15,000). Job openings decreased in accommodation and food services (-111,000) and information (-28,000). The number of job openings was little changed in all four regions. Now if only employers could find potential employees that can pass their drug test…
Comment on the impact from the hurricanes, the BLS said that “Hurricane Irma made landfall in Florida during September, the reference month for the preliminary estimates in this release. All possible efforts were made to contact and collect data from survey respondents in the hurricane-affected areas. A review of the data indicated that Hurricane Irma had no discernible effect on the JOLTS estimates for September.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts – The King In Yellow

“Love is not easy; it is not our natural state. It seems weak and foolish, and is despicable to the fallen of this world and the next, who by the declaration of their hearts and minds say non serviam, I will not serve.”
Jesse, Love Is the Refuge of the Way
Stocks bubbled sideways today, digesting the recent gains, and treading water as additional earnings and economic news comes out.
I have made no secret of it, that the US equity markets seem very fully valued at this point, and are overdue for a stiff correction in the neighborhood of ten percent. That they have not even had a 3 percent correction in quite some time is a testimony to the amount of hot money and speculative froth underpinning them.
Peak hubris. We’re there on a number of fronts, socially, financially, and politically. I have not seen anything like this since the tech stock bubble. The housing bubble was much broader and deeper, and much more profound in the levels of its corruption. This one seems more like an ‘echo bubble.’ In all three instances the primary actors were the Wall Street financiers, the Banks, and the Fed.
The amount of potentially destabilizing situations geopolitically are daunting, almost breath-taking. I won’t bother to list them here, but things in Asia, the Middle East, and Europe are showing signs of heaving the landscape out of place. Domestically things in the US are much more tense under the surface than anything I can remember in many years. The elite are doubling down on their winnings with a kind of race to the oncoming wall of bad karma.

This post was published at Jesses Crossroads Cafe on 07 NOVEMBER 2017.

The Great Deficit Ruse

If your profligate friend blew his budget on liquor, you might feel bad for him. But it’s unlikely that you would be willing to fork over money to cover his mistake. He needs to figure it out. And maybe, then, he will learn a lesson for the future.
This is exactly how I feel about all this whining about the federal deficit. I didn’t cause it. It’s not my problem. I should not be forced to pay for it. I don’t work every day in order to earn money to pay for other people’s problems.
Admit that you agree. You don’t really care about the deficit. Not really. It’s an abstraction to you. More crucially, the deficit is not your fault. You are not responsible for paying for one dime of the federal debt. No portion of your justly made income should be taken to cover the fiscal irresponsibility of anyone except perhaps your children.
Actually, it’s very bad parenting always to be ready to pay the kids’ debts. It’s similarly bad citizenship always to be willing to pay the government’s debts.
All this media talk – and it is incessant and ubiquitous – about how the deficit is way more important than your property rights completely disregards the realities of politics. Namely: politicians and bureaucrats desperately need an excuse to take your money. Making you pay for their past mistakes is as good an excuse as any.

This post was published at Mises Canada on NOVEMBER 7, 2017.

RenTech Founder Jim Simons “Urged” CEO Mercer To Resign Over His Support For Breitbart

Last week, the financial world was shaken when billionaire Robert Mercer, co-CEO of RenTec which is arguably the world’s most profitable and secretive hedge fund, announced he was quitting on Jan 1, 2018. While the prominent Trump and Bannon supporter did not reveal the reason behind his departure, he did make it clear that he does not agree with everything Steve Bannon does and say, and made it very clear that he is especially disappointed with outspoken conservative media personality, Milo Yiannopoulos, whom he threw under the proverbial bus saying “actions by Yiannopoulos have caused pain and divisiveness undermining the open and productive discourse that I had hoped to facilitate.”
Now, in a follow up report from Bloomberg, it has emerged that Mercer did not quit RenTec out of his own volition, but was instead pushed out by Rentec’s retired founder, and prominent Democrat and Clinton supporter, Jim Simmons. According to Bloomberg, Simons urged Robert Mercer “to step down from his role as co-chief executive officer over concerns that his backing of Breitbart News was hurting morale at the world’s most profitable hedge fund.”
Which is another way of saying that Mercer’s support of Trump’s policies, Steve Bannon (not to mention monetary investment in Breitbart) cost him his job.
That, perhaps, is not surprising: after all, in recent months, Mercer’s personal political projects dragged what has otherwise been the world’s most secretive firm into the national spotlight. As a result, a backlash from RenTec’s founder, and ideological opposite of Mercer was to be expected. Simons, who is a major donor to Democratic causes, negotiated Mercer’s move from top executive to researcher at the computer-driven firm over the past three months, one of the people said. Mercer’s role will change on Jan.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Nov 7, 2017.

Tax Cuts will Balloon US Debt to 120% of GDP, but Boost to Economy will be ‘Short-Lived’

US is the ‘most indebted AAA-country’ and runs ‘the loosest fiscal stance,’ but the dollar as Reserve Currency still props it up: Fitch
It’s uncertain what if anything in the mix of tax cuts and tax increases being kicked around in Congress will become law. But Fitch Ratings believes that some combination will make it, and that it will sap US government revenues. ‘Under a realistic scenario of tax cuts and macro conditions,’ the US deficit would rise to 4% of GDP next year, and balloon the US debt to 120% of GDP by 2027.
And that might be the best-case scenario.
That debt-to-GDP ratio just shot up to 105% – based on annualized Q3 GDP of $19.5 trillion and the US gross national debt of $20.5 trillion that had spiked by $640 billion in eight Weeks, following the suspension of the debt ceiling in September. The debt-to-GDP ratio was 103% earlier this year.
Fitch said in the report that it expects some version of the package to pass the US Congress, and that it ‘will be revenue negative, even under generous assumptions about its growth impact.’
The tax package, which includes cutting the corporate tax rate from 35% to 20%, ‘would deliver a modest and temporary spur to growth,’ Fitch said. Even with these tax cuts, Fitch expects US economic growth to peak at 2.5% next year and then fall back to 2.2% in 2019 – the same kind of economic growth the US has seen since the Financial Crisis. So any boost to output from the tax cuts would be ‘short-lived.’

This post was published at Wolf Street on Nov 7, 2017.

Rising Gold Prices Lag Crude Oil as Saudis Accuse Iran of War, Equities Rise With Bitcoin

Gold prices held most of yesterday’s 1.0% jump against the Dollar and touched new 3-week highs for Euro investors on Tuesday, trading higher as crude oil rose and Saudi Arabia accused Iran of “direct military aggression” tantamount to a declaration of war.
Wall Street’s S&P500 index of US stocks ended Monday with its 11th new record closing high in a month.
Crypto-currency Bitcoin today rallied to regain half of Monday’s 6% drop, trading back above $7000 after hitting 5 new daily all-time highs in succession last week.
Listen to Tom McClellan on Stocks and Real Estate; Keith Barron on Peak Gold
Crude oil spiked Tuesday to new 2.5-year highs, while Arabian stock markets fell hard – down over 3% – as news broke of further detentions and sanctions against senior Saudi figures by new crown prince Mohammed Bin Salman.
“We expected to some interest in gold following the close above $1280,” says one Asian trading desk in a gold price note, “[but] Chinese selling appears to be capping the market.”
“Stocks are at record highs, so you don’t need gold,” says George Gero at the wealth management division of Canada’s RBC.

This post was published at FinancialSense on 11/07/2017.

Europe Is Booming, Except It’s Not

European GDP rose 0.6% quarter-over-quarter in Q3 2017, the eighteenth consecutive increase for the Continental (EA 19) economy. That latter result is being heralded as some sort of achievement, though the 0.6% is also to a lesser degree. The truth is that neither is meaningful, and that Europe’s economy continues toward instead the abyss.
At 0.6%, that doesn’t even equal the average growth rate exhibited from either the late 1990’s or middle 2000’s. Straight away one of the so-called better quarters is already below average by historical comparison. That would suggest Europe’s economy is still struggling.
Because even these positive quarters are never all that positive, there can never be enough momentum let alone growth to make up for when there was clear, linear contraction. The economy shrinks and though GDP turns positive afterward, even for eighteen straight quarters, the shrinking isn’t actually concluded.

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