Mnuchin’s PR Visit to Fort Knox proves nothing about the US Gold Reserves

On the afternoon of Monday, August 21, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin, and Kentucky Congressman Brett Guthrie took a visit to the vault of the US Mint’s gold depository in Fort Knox, Kentucky, a vault which, according to the US Treasury, holds gold bars containing 147,341,858 fine troy ounces of gold (4583 tonnes of gold).
The trip was notable in that it is one of the rare occasions in history that a US political/congressional delegation has ever visited the Fort Knox depository, and Mnuchin is now only the 3rd treasury secretary ever to make this visit.
The trip was also notable in that unlike previous political excursions to the vault, the Mnuchin-led visit was very low-key, it was announced to the media and public at extremely short notice, and there is no evidence that any media representatives participated, or at least if they did, they have kept very quiet about it.

This post was published at Bullion Star on 23 Aug 2017.

McConnell Responds To NYT “Trump Feud” Article: “We Are Working To Prevent A U.S. Default”

In addition to Trump’s bombastic Phoenix rally promise that he would shut the government, if needed, to build his “Great Wall”, among the catalysts for today’s risk off sentiment in the market was a bombshell NYT report according to which the relationship between Trump and Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell had “disintegrated”, and the feud between the two esclated to a point where after a recent screaming fest on the phone, the two Republican leaders had not spoken in weeks, and that McConnell voiced doubts that “Trump can save the presidency”, suggesting the animosity between the president and the most important person in Congress had never been worse.
Moments ago, McConnell responded to the NYT article, and without explicitly denying any of its findings, said that he continues to work with Trump on a “share agenda together and anyone who suggests otherwise is clearly not part of the conversation”, and that his and Trump’s teams remain in “regular contact” to prevent a US debt default.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.


GOLD: $1289.00 UP $3.35
Silver: $17.07 UP 9 CENTS
Closing access prices:
Gold $1290.40
silver: $17.08
Premium of Shanghai 2nd fix/NY:$6.99
LONDON FIRST GOLD FIX: 5:30 am est $1285.10
For comex gold:
TOTAL NOTICES SO FAR: 4584 FOR 458,400 OZ (14.258 TONNES)
For silver:
75,000 OZ/
Total number of notices filed so far this month: 1104 for 5,520,000 oz

This post was published at Harvey Organ Blog on August 23, 2017.

Mike Rowe Eviscerates “Smug” Snowflake Who Calls Him A “White Nationalist”

If you ever plan to attack Mike Rowe over Facebook then you better bring more than just a few “smug and snarky” comments to the table because anything less than a well-sourced, reasoned, fact-based argument might just earn you the same public humiliation that Rowe just dropped on Chuck Atkins. Oh, and your grammar better be spot on too.
Unfortunately, Chuck didn’t follow any of the guidelines above when he decided to write on Mike Rowe’s Facebook thread accusing him of being at “white nationalist” for having the audacity to suggest that a $200,000 college education may not be the ‘best’ option for all American high school graduates. Apparently Chuck is convinced that helping people get high-paying, stable trade jobs is just racism at it’s worst…
In any event, here is what Chuck Atkins made the mistake of posting on Rowe’s Facebook page:

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.

Do Not Feed The Bears – Until 2018

Back on July 15th, the title to my weekend update to members of my market analysis service was ‘Market Will Likely Top Within The Next Three Weeks.’ My initial target region for this top was between 2487-2500SPX. One of the factors I considered in my timing for this potential top was Luke Miller’s Bayesian Timing model, which was looking for a top to our wave (3) on August 9th. And, as we know, the market topped on August 8th at 2491SPX, and we seem to have begun the multi-month pullback/consolidation we have been expecting.
For those old enough to remember, Ranger Smith of the ‘Yogi Bear’ cartoon used to constantly tell visitors at Jellystone Park not to feed bears. So, consider me your Ranger Smith.
You see, people can’t help themselves but be bearish. In fact, it seems we are genetically predisposed to being bearish, as the following article explains:

This post was published at GoldSeek on 23 August 2017.

Now You Can Be As Cool (& Short Credit) As Carl Icahn

I know all the cool kids like to quote Nassim Taleb and give dire warnings about the coming collapse of risk assets, but I must have too many years of playing Dungeons & Dragons because I just can’t seem to join their club. I don’t see the same black swans that everyone else does.
Central Banks have gone giant-golden-crowned-flying-fox batshit crazy, and instead of looking at the possibility that this unprecedented science experiment explodes in a fiery inflationary explosion to the upside, the ‘in-crowd’ are all convinced the collapse has to look exactly like 2008 (only worse).

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.

Autos Expose Economy’s Fragility As Credit-Compelled Car Sales Continue To Collapse

The revival of the auto industry drove the factory sector out of recession; the flipside doesn’t look promising.
Federal Reserve data released last week on July industrial production offered little more than more of the same. Despite post-election optimism for a rebound in activity on the nation’s factory floors, the data reveal a continued throttling down in the growth rate to just over 2 percent compared with this time last year.
The main drag on activity — the auto sector — should come as no surprise to investors. Rather than rising by 0.2 percent over June as projected, manufacturing production contracted by 0.1 percent, marking the third decline in five months. Motor vehicles and parts production fell by 3.6 percent on the month, taking the year-over-year slide to five percent.
Blue Line: IP Manufacturing, Growth Y-o-Y%… Red Line: IP Manufacturing Ex-Motor Vehicles and Parts, Growth Y-o-Y%

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.

The Old Economy Is Giving Way To A New Economic System – Episode 1362a

The following video was published by X22Report on Aug 23, 2017
Trump continually says he is going to kill the NAFTA agreement. It is time he does so. New home sales implode and the corporate media is now warning that the real estate market might not be as strong as originally thought. Service industry surges upward but manufacturing declines. The corporate media is now reporting that the economy is showing signs that it might enter a recession in the next 12 months. The old economy is dying and the new economy is gaining speed and the BRICS nations are behind it.

Former DNI Clapper Questions Trump’s “Fitness For Office”; Fearmongers “Access To Nuclear Codes”

CNN’s Don Lemon and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper linked up for an epic tag-team attack on President Trump last night in which Lemon masterfully teed up one leading question after another and Clapper knocked them all out of the park with provocative sound bites that will undoubtedly be played throughout the day.
Bravo, team! Beautiful performance and seamless transition from the fake ‘Russian collusion’ narrative to the new, yet equally fake, “Trump is a racist and unfit for office’ narrative.
Here is a small sample of last night’s master class on journalism:
Lemon: “What did you think of tonight’s performance by President Trump?”
Clapper:“I don’t know when I’ve listened and watched something like this from a President that I found more disturbing.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.

El-Erian Warns Vexed Central Bankers “The Lowflation Demon Is Real”

Persistently low inflation, or “lowflation,” is vexing lots of people. According to the recent minutes of policy meetings of the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank, central banks on both sides of the Atlantic have been trying to identify the causes — but with limited success so far. This complicates monetary policy decisions and undermines the range of institutional solutions that have been proposed by academics. Until this changes, central banks may need to think more holistically about the objectives of monetary policy, including the unintended consequences for future financial stability and growth of being too loose for too long.
Four facts stand out in reviewing recent inflation data:
Inflation rates have been unusually and persistently low. This is primarily an advanced-country phenomenon. Inflation has not responded to the prolonged pursuit of ultra-low interest rates and huge injections of liquidity by central banks through quantitative easing. This has coincided with a period of notable job creation, especially in the U. S., thereby flattening the “Phillips curve” that plots unemployment and inflation rates.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.

23/8/17: Ireland: A Haven for SPVs?

Ireland scored another ‘first’ in the league tables relating to tax optimisation and avoidance, staying at the top of the Euro area rankings as a Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) destination: my comment, amongst others).
As my comment in the article linked above alludes, there is a combination of factors that is driving Ireland’s ‘competitiveness’ in this area. Some are positive for the economy and non-zero-game in relation to our trading partners, e.g.- Ireland providing a functional access to the European markets via regulatory and markets infrastructure arrangements that facilitate trading from Dublin into the rest of the EEC;
– Ireland offering a strong platform for on-shoring human capital, a much more functional platform than any other EU nation, due to greater openness to skills-based migration, English language, common law and open culture;
– Ireland serves as a clustering centre for a range of financial services functions, making it more attractive than traditional tax havens for conducting real business.

This post was published at True Economics on August 23, 2017.

WTI Algos Uncertain After Gasoline Inventories Draw But Crude Production Surges

WTI crude prices managed to scramble back up to pre-API-tumble levels ahead of DOE’s data dump this morning with all eyes on gasoline inventories, which did not disappoint showing a small draw (in line with expectations) along with crude’s draw which was roughly in line with API and expectations. Production continues to rise to highest since July 2015.
Crude -3.595mm (-3.5mm exp) Cushing -462k (+300k exp) Gasoline +1.402mm (-1mm exp) Distillates +2.048mm DOE
Crude -3.33mm (-3.5mm exp) Cushing -503k (+300k exp) Gasoline -1.22mm (-1.25mm exp) Distillates +28k

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.

Fitch Threatens US with Downgrade

Did it forget how the US government hounded Standard & Poor’s?
Bitter irony! Just yesterday, I had a conversation with Bill Tilles, and we agreed on all three points. This morning, we’re already proven wrong on one of them:
A government shutdown as Congress fails to pass spending levels for fiscal 2018? Yes, it could happen. A failure to raise the debt ceiling, thus pushing the US government into default, or ‘selective default?’ Very unlikely. Lawmakers are political animals that use charades and posturing to accomplish their goals, but they’re not stupid (we hope). A threat by US ratings agencies to slash the US credit rating due to the debt-ceiling charade and the consequences of a ‘selective default?’ No way, we agreed. Ratings agencies learned their lesson from how the US government hounded Standard & Poor’s after its 2011 downgrade of the US. A new day, and we’re already wrong. Standard & Poor’s may have learned its lesson. But Fitch Ratings hasn’t – though its language this morning was a lot kinder and gentler (emphasis added).

This post was published at Wolf Street on Aug 23, 2017.

China’s Get the Gold Plan: Part II

Money Metals readers may remember my November 2014 report in which I discussed how gold flowed into China in “tributary fashion” like small streams flowing into a giant one. In this case, the gold has been streaming into China’s increasingly massive thousands-of-tons gold hoard.
In January, 2015, I penned an essay titled “China’s Global Gold Supply “Game of Stones,” outlining China’s long-range goal to dominate the world’s physical gold market.
Well, events have moved massively forward since then. I want to update you as to just how much things have changed – and how close we may be to experiencing a “defining moment” in the gold market.
I’m talking about a game-changing event that could, with little warning, propel the price of gold upward by hundreds – even thousands – of dollars per ounce in the space of a few weeks… conceivably overnight! (And since silver’s price movements are highly correlated with that of gold, we could expect an upside explosion in silver as well.)
China’s 4-pronged gold accumulation strategy:
First: Buy physical gold in world markets, re-fabricate it when necessary (into .9999 fine bars in Switzerland), and ship to the mainland.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 23 August 2017.

“Fear The Majoritarian Mob” – WSJ On The Left’s “Great Nazi Scare Of 2017”

As we noted previously, “normal Americans are bored by the fake drama” surrounding Charlottesville that has stoked what Kurt Schlichter called the media’s ‘Nazigasm’…
“The establishment’s tactic is to paint anyone they dislike as Nazis and any ideas its members oppose as hate speech…The media is running with it…Even after a week, CNN is still quivering and writhing in an earth-shattering Nazigasm.”
Taking a break from Twitter and the media for a week to go be with normal people gave me an interesting perspective that I don’t get when I’m surrounded by others invested in politics. None of them care.
The exact number of times I heard normal people mention Nazis was zero. No one normal was talking about it, except on the occasional big screen I passed in my travels. No one normal was paying attention to the Wolf Blitzers or the Rachel Maddows. Everyone normal was living their lives, and this fake moral meltdown had no part in them. The fact that the whole thing is so ridiculous doesn’t help it gain traction. Donald Trump is a lot of things, but a Nazi is not one of them.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.


President Donald Trump’s vow Tuesday to close down the government if he doesn’t get money for the border wall mirrors private comments he has made to advisers in recent days – and could cause significant rifts within his own party if he follows through.
The fight over the wall is likely to explode in September as the administration wrangles over a new budget, an increase in the debt ceiling, the beginning of a tax reform package and a possible resuscitation of health care legislation.

This post was published at The Daily Sheeple on AUGUST 23, 2017.

Compass Point: “Odds Of A Government Shutdown Are Now Dramatically Higher”

Over the weekend, Morgan Stanley reminded its clients that the biggest threat facing markets over the coming weeks is the ‘three-headed policy monster’ inside Washington: raising the debt ceiling, passing a budget and embarking on tax reform. As MS cross-asset strategist Andrew Sheets noted, “none are easy, but we see the debt ceiling as the most immediate test.”
He then cautioned that while the most likely outcome is that, after some tension, the debt ceiling gets raised “we don’t think it will be easy, or smooth, and it may require some form of market pressure to get different sides to fall in line. I’ve spoken to investors who are comforted by FOMC transcripts from 2011 that discussed prioritization of debt payments in order to avoid default. I am not. First, I worry that this reduces the urgency of what remains a serious issue. Second, this prioritization would require delaying payments to programmes like Social Security and Medicare, with real human and economic cost. And third, while the mechanics of this prioritisation may work, it is untested in a live environment.”
As reported earlier, the market’s concerns about a potential debt ceiling crisis, so far mostly contained, have once again started to bubble to the surface, with the Oct. 5 T-Bill rate rising to the highest level since August 1st, suggesting that bond traders see rising odds of a “worst case outcome” and partially answering our question from Monday whether “Markets Are Sleepwalking Into A Debt Ceiling Crisis: Mnuchin Issues Another Warning.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Aug 23, 2017.