Bitcoin Soars After CFTC Approves Futures Trading: First Trade To Take Place Dec.18

Bitcoin is back over $10,000 after the the CFTC confirmed what had been previously reported, namely that it would allow bitcoin futures to trade on two exchanges, the CME and CBOE Futures Exchange, also granting the Cantor Exchange permission to trade a contract for bitcoin binary options.
The CFTC announced that through a process known as “self-certification,” CME and Cboe stated that their contracts comply with U. S. law and CFTC regulations. The US commodity regulator also said that the it held ‘rigorous discussions’ with the exchanges that resulted in improvements to the contracts’ designs and settlement.
As to when the first bitcoin futures will cross the tape, the CME said it has self-certified the initial listing of its bitcoin futures to launch Monday, December 18, 2017.
‘Bitcoin, a virtual currency, is a commodity unlike any the Commission has dealt with in the past,’ said CFTC Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo. ‘As a result, we have had extensive discussions with the exchanges regarding the proposed contracts, and CME, CFE and Cantor have agreed to significant enhancements to protect customers and maintain orderly markets. In working with the Commission, CME, CFE and Cantor have set an appropriate standard for oversight over these bitcoin contracts given the CFTC’s limited statutory ability to oversee the cash market for bitcoin.’
‘Market participants should take note that the relatively nascent underlying cash markets and exchanges for bitcoin remain largely unregulated markets over which the CFTC has limited statutory authority. There are concerns about the price volatility and trading practices of participants in these markets. We expect that the futures exchanges, through information sharing agreements, will be monitoring the trading activity on the relevant cash platforms for potential impacts on the futures contracts’ price discovery process, including potential market manipulation and market dislocations due to flash rallies and crashes and trading outages. Nevertheless, investors should be aware of the potentially high level of volatility and risk in trading these contracts.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Dec 1, 2017.

A Look Inside The “Basket” Holding The “Market’s Big Puzzle”

In a front page article, the WSJ takes aim at the “biggest market puzzle” of our times: the bizarre disconnect between growth and inflation, where on one hand government reports of strong, coordinated, global economic growth and tumbling unemployment (at least in the US and Japan) are offset by the complete lack of concurrent reflation. Some examples:
The U. S. economy grew 3% in Q2, but in July CPI was up only 1.7% from the prior year; Eurozone inflation, similarly, remains stuck at 1.5% despite the bloc’s accelerated recovery. Japan’s economy grew 4% in the same quarter – its longest expansion streak since 2006 – yet inflation has failed to move above zero, where it has been stuck for the past two decades. Aside from the now widely accepted reality that the Phillips curve is now broken…
… and the all too real possibility that either growth or inflation is being measured – and reported – incorrectly, whether accidentally or for political or market manipulation purposes, this disconnect suggests that something is very wrong with conventional economic theory: after all “when growth is strong, people demand more products and companies need to offer better pay to hire more workers, and so prices go up.” And, as the WSJ points out, if this relationship is indeed broken, “the consequences are vast for economic policy-making and financial markets.”

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

Bankers Get Their Criminal Convictions Overturned

The Second Circuit Federal Court of Appeals overturned the convictions of two former Rabobank traders in the LIBOR London interbank market manipulation scandal saying the men’s Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination had been violated. Former Rabobank traders Anthony Conti and Anthony Allen, was sentenced to a year and a day in prison by Judge Rakoff who said that he was ‘mystified’ that prosecutors only went after institutions since punishing individuals has a deterrent effect on others in a profession.
Nevertheless, the three-judge panel of the Second Circuit U. S. Court of Appeals in New York dismissed the charges against the two former Rabobank traders who were convicted on conspiracy and wire-fraud charges in November 2015. In a unanimous 81-page ruling, the Second Circuit Judge Jose Cabranes wrote that the two men’s convictions were tainted because a witness against them had been aware of testimony authorities in the U. K. had forced them to provide.

This post was published at Armstrong Economics on Jul 21, 2017.

So what’s happening to gold – and silver? — Lawrie Williams

What a difference a week or two makes in gold sentiment – and in silver which has fared even worse with the gold:silver ratio running close to 80 again at one point – a level which usually is at the top end of the comparison and would seem to signify a great buying opportunity for silver bulls – but is it? Gold sank to $1204 before making a small recovery, and silver to $15.07 before making a slightly larger one (in percentage terms at least.) Prices do seem to be clawing their way back upwards at the time of writing, but is this just a blip in a continuing downtrend? As I write, gold is at $1214 and silver at $15.60.
No doubt the dastardly bullion banks with their huge short positions in both precious metals are being seen as the principal culprits. Certainly trading volumes have been far higher than one would expect, particularly at the tail end of last week, but as usual these are paper gold (and silver) transactions driving the markets, but this time aided by sales of physical metal out of the big ETFs. Gold and silver bulls feel that the end-game is nigh and the big bullion banks (of which JP Morgan comes in for particular stick) will switch tack and drive prices back up again making mega profits on metal they have bought on the cheap. But is this just wishful thinking – no-one really knows. Second guessing the big banks is a mug’s game. JP Morgan, for example, always seems to come out on top in its trades – far more so than normal balanced financial markets would suggest. No wonder there is ever-continuing talk of blatant market manipulation by the big guys.

This post was published at Sharps Pixley

Paper Gold And Silver – A Tragic Reflection Of The U.S. Financial System

Dave, just a moment for some feed back on your Short Seller’s Journal. I just placed an order for 1oz gold eagles thx to my profits off Tesla and BBBY, thx as always. – subscriber email received today – Short Seller’s Journal information
Wow. The hedge funds are almost net short silver contracts again, having had their algos steered into that predicament by the bullion bank market manipulation. The fraudulent paper short position in both gold and silver – but especially silver – is many multiples larger than the available supply of physical metal that is supposed to legally back commodity derivatives. This is evident from the Comex disclosures.

This post was published at Investment Research Dynamics on July 8, 2017.

Silver Prices Bounce Higher After Futures Manipulated 7% Lower In Minute

– Silver prices ‘flash crash’ before rebound
– Silver hammered 7% lower in less than minute in Asian trading
– Silver fell from $16 to $14.82, before recovering to $15.89
– Silver plunge blamed on another ‘trading error’
– Gold similar ‘flash crash’ last week and similar recovery
– Hallmarks of market manipulation as $450 million worth of silver futures sold in minute
– Trading ‘errors’ always push gold and silver lower. Why never higher?
– ‘Flash crashes’ increasingly frequent in precious metals, yet rarely happen in stocks and bonds
– Rapid recovery from frequent raids bodes well for precious metals
– Silver coins and bars accumulated on dips by ‘stackers’
***
Silver prices got a bit of a jolt this morning when spot silver had yet another so called ‘flash crash’ and fell by between 7% and 10% before recovering and bouncing sharply higher to not far below where the attack on the price began.

This post was published at Gold Core on July 7, 2017.

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts – Fat Fingers

The ‘fat finger’ of fairly raw and obvious market manipulation hit gold in the early hours.
No one dumps that many contracts against a much thinner bid side without intent. We have exposed that here many times before.
There are those who are greatly exercised by the consequences of a system gone corrupt when it affects them.

But they too often say nothing, or even nod approvingly according to some ideological formulation, when that same corrupt system preys on the weak and vulnerable.

This post was published at Jesses Crossroads Cafe on 26 JUNE 2017.

Anbang Just Became A “Systemic Risk”: Revenues Crash 90% As Its Chairman Is “Detained”

As reported earlier this week, overnight Bloomberg confirmed that Wu Xiaohui, the chairman of China’s insurance conglomerate which recently made headlines in the US for nearly reaching a deal with Jared Kushner over 666 Fifth Ave., was detained by a joint team of Central Commission for “Discipline Inspection” and police for questioning. It adds that that Chinese investigators who detained Wu are carrying out a wide probe that includes looking into the sources of funding for the firm’s acquisitions overseas, possible market manipulation by insurers, and ‘economic crimes.”
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier that investigators were seen checking whether Wu – whose fortune last year was calculated to be just over $1 billion – was involved in bribery and other economic crimes at Anbang and that Wu couldn’t be contacted for comment. As noted on Wednesday, Anbang said Wu couldn’t perform his duties for personal reasons, a story which has since been disproved.
The authorities are said to be examining Anbang transactions including acquisitions overseas and their funding. According to Bloomberg;s sources, the probe also fits into a broader investigation of possible market manipulation by insurers, although they didn’t specifically define the term ‘economic crimes.’ The action is the result of the government’s crackdown on a sector that is “supposed to help families and companies cut their financial risks, but has recently become a hub for rampant financial speculation.”
Yet while Wu’s fate now appears sealed, swallowed by China and unlikely to reemerge any time soon if ever, questions have emerged about the viability of Anbang Insurance Group itself, which as the NYT reported overnight, has seen its growth come to a “screeching halt” as Chinese investors who helped fund its meteoric rise no longer want to have anything to do with the politically connected company which is “no longer in Beijing’s good graces.”

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jun 15, 2017.

Hell Freezes Over: CFTC Finds Trader Guilty of Metals Price Rigging

It must have been painfully awkward for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
Last year, Deutsche Bank settled a civil suit involving blatant market rigging and turned over reams of information, including chat logs and voice recordings. The trove contained plenty of damning evidence which had gone overlooked by the CFTC.
CFTC investigators supposedly spent 5 years searching for illegal market manipulation, but somehow, managed to find nothing.
The cheating became hard to ignore after Deutsche Bank turned over voice recordings and 350,000 pages of documents which revealed bank trading desks being run like the back office of a crooked casino.

This post was published at GoldSeek on 13 June 2017.

Another Rigged Market: Scientific Study Finds Systemic VIX Auction Manipulation

To the list of ‘rigged’ markets (e.g. Libor, FX, Silver, Treasuries…) we can now add VIX (which explains a lot) as two University of Texas at Austin finance professors find “large transient deviations in VIX prices” around the morning auction, “consistent with market manipulation.”
***
As Bloomberg reports, in addition to being an index that is much quoted in articles about market complacency, the VIX is used as a reference price for derivatives: If you want to bet that stock-market volatility will go up, or down, you can buy or sell futures or options on the VIX. These products are cash settled: The VIX is not a thing you can own, so if your option ends up in the money you just get paid cash for the value of the VIX at settlement.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on May 25, 2017.

Deutsche Bank Woes Deepen in Monte Paschi Fraud Case

Deutsche Bank AG, on trial in Milan for allegedly helping Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA conceal losses, must face accusations that it was running an international criminal organization at the time.
Prosecutors used internal Deutsche Bank documents and emails to persuade a three-judge panel to consider whether there were additional, aggravating circumstances to the charges the German lender already faces related to derivatives transactions. The material included a London trader’s “well done!” message to a banker who is now on trial, evidence seen by Bloomberg shows.
Allowing prosecutors to argue that the alleged market manipulation crimes were committed by an organization operating in several countries could lead to higher penalties if they win a conviction. Giuseppe Iannaccone, a lawyer for Deutsche Bank and some of the defendants, sought to block the move at Tuesday’s hearing, saying there wasn’t a clear connection between the original charge of market manipulation and the alleged aggravating circumstances.
‘The trial for Deutsche Bank managers becomes more problematic after the judge’s decision,’ said Giampiero Biancolella, an attorney specializing in financial crime who isn’t involved in the case. ‘If proven, the aggravating circumstance may increase the eventual jail sentence for the market manipulation to a maximum of nine years.’
The German bank and Nomura Holdings Inc. went on trial in Milan in December, accused of colluding with Monte Paschi to cover up losses that almost toppled the Italian lender before its current battle for survival. Thirteen former managers of Deutsche Bank, Nomura and Monte Paschi were charged for alleged false accounting and market manipulation.

This post was published at bloomberg

Deutsche Bank Sued For Running An “International Criminal Organization” In Italian Court

Having been accused, and found guilty, of rigging and manipulating virtually every possible asset class, perhaps it was inevitable that Deutsche Bank, currently on trial in Milan for helping Banca Monte dei Paschi conceal losses (as first reported last October in “Deutsche Bank Charged By Italy For Market Manipulation, Creating False Accounts“) is now facing accusations that it was actually running an international criminal organization at the time.
In the closely watched lawsuit, prosecutors used internal Deutsche Bank documents and emails to persuade a three-judge panel to rule that there were additional, aggravating circumstances to the charges the German lender already faces related to various derivatives transactions. As Bloomberg reported overnight, the material included a London trader’s “well done!” message to a banker who is now on trial.
The reason why prosecutors are seeking expanded charges against the German banking giants is that by allowing prosecutors to argue that the bank’s market manipulation crimes were committed by an organization operating in several countries would lead to higher penalties if they win a conviction.
Predictably, Deutsche Bank’s lawyer, Giuseppe Iannaccone, sought to block the move at Tuesday’s hearing, saying there wasn’t a clear connection between the original charge of market manipulation and the alleged aggravating circumstances. ‘The trial for Deutsche Bank managers becomes more problematic after the judge’s decision,’ said Giampiero Biancolella, an attorney specializing in financial crime who isn’t involved in the case. ‘If proven, the aggravating circumstance may increase the eventual jail sentence for the market manipulation to a maximum of nine years.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on May 18, 2017.

At retirement dinner, Eric Sprott praises GATA’s work

Sprott Asset Management founder and philanthropist Eric Sprott, honored last night in Toronto at a retirement testimonial dinner sponsored by the company, praised GATA’s work and called on GATA Chairman Bill Murphy and your secretary/treasurer to stand and be recognized. Some people in the audience of about 200 actually applauded, through the audience consisted mainly of ordinarily respectable people from the Canadian financial industry. Of course they may have just been trying to be polite and to humor Sprott. But some later confessed to following GATA’s work and to have been persuaded by it.
Sprott went on mischievously to contrast what he called “the GATA table,” at which Murphy and your secretary/treasurer were seated with Sprott Asset Management’s John Embry and economist Ian Gordon of Longwave Group, with what he called “the World Gold Council table,” at which two former chairmen of the council were seated: Franco-Nevada founder Pierre Lassonde and Goldcorp Chairman Ian Telfer. Sprott noted that during the dinner no rolls had been thrown from the GATA table toward the World Gold Council table.
Civility and cordiality were maintained though Lassonde repeatedly has dismissed complaints of gold market manipulation and has insisted that central banks couldn’t care less about gold while GATA has dismissed the World Gold Council as an accomplice with central banks in gold price suppression, a facilitator of “paper gold” and the shorting of the monetary metal.

This post was published at GATA

Gold & Silver Manipulation Explained – How & Why Market Manipulations Occur

The following video was published by McAlvany Financial on May 11, 2017
This week we discuss Gold & Silver Manipulation, How & Why It Occurs. Learn how you can take advantage of when a big player intentionally triggers downward market movement. Insider Trading & Market Manipulations are becoming more common each day, learn about how these events occur and what to do in response. Thanks for listening

CENTRAL BANK MARKET RIGGING: Horrified About The Biggest Global Bank Run In History

The Fed and Central banks are manipulating the gold and silver price because they are horrified that the biggest global BANK RUN in history will take down the entire system. Unfortunately, a lot of investors are still being misled about the fundamentals of precious metals market manipulation. While the Fed and Central bank are indeed intervening in the gold and silver market, they are also propping up the majority of asset values across the board. This is especially true for most stocks, bonds and real estate.
Yes, it is also true that billions of Dollars worth of paper gold and silver are dumped into the market in nanoseconds during very light trading days. Thus, the impact is to cap the gold and silver price, making sure that 99% of investors stay fast asleep. These are the very same investors who the Central banks are working extremely hard to keep their funds placed firmly in stocks, bonds and real estate.
I continue to receive emails from individuals who believe the Central banks can push the price of gold or silver anywhere they please. This is total RUBBISH. However, there is some method to their madness. It is a crying shame that there are still analysts out there misleading their followers with that sort of superficial nonsense.
All the Fed and Central Banks can do is to keep the gold and silver price from exploding higher. They cannot push the value of gold or silver (too far) below its cost of production. Here is a chart from my previous article showing the gold price versus the top two gold miners (Barrick and Newmont) cost of production:
The gold market price was always HIGHER than Barrick and Newmont’s cost of production. So, as we can plainly see, the Fed and Central Banks NEVER pushed the annual gold price below Barrick and Newmont’s cost of production from 2000 to 2016.
NOT EVEN ONCE….
Which means, the notion that the Fed and Central banks can push the price of gold down to $500 or even zero, is total nonsense. They CAN’T do it, and they know it. Furthermore, I have older Homestake Mining Annual Reports from the 1970’s. Homestake Mining was the United States largest gold producer for more than 50 years. I plan on writing an article showing how Homestake’s cost of production increased substantially, along with the oil price, during the inflationary decade of the 1970’s.

This post was published at SRSrocco Report on MAY 8, 2017.

Ted Butler Quote of the Day 04-21-17

To advance its prime mission, the CFTC actively solicits tips from the public in its quest to uncover wrongdoing and has instituted a formal whistleblower program designed to reward those who step forward to report wrongdoing. Sounds like a fairly formidable effort against market manipulation and fraud – a quarter of a billion taxpayer dollars annually, 700 full time employees and programs designed to generate tips and complaints from the public. One might think with resources like that, market manipulation wouldn’t stand a chance. Think again.

Those raising the allegations of a silver manipulation, like myself and others, have, basically, zero funds and zero employees budgeted towards raising the allegations of a silver manipulation. The allegations are driven simply by observing price action and COMEX positioning changes, as reported in the COT reports. Despite the programs designed to encourage and generate tips from the public, the record indicates that the CFTC has become downright hostile and unwilling to openly discuss any allegations of a COMEX silver manipulation, even though the allegations are based upon Commission data. Talk about upside down.

I’m told from those who know of him personally, that the new director of the Enforcement Division, James McDonald, is as straight and honorable as a June day is long. Certainly his public service record attests to that. McDonald has a strong legal background and, get this, his last position at the U.S. Attorney’s office in New York involved successful prosecution against public corruption. Sounds like his experience might be put to good use should he not succumb to orders from above to forget about the silver manipulation. Someday, someone new at the agency will refuse to go along with orders from above to ignore what is a market crime in progress. Hopefully, McDonald will prove up to the task.

A small excerpt from Ted Butler’s subscription letter on 19 April 2017.

More precious metals news & information available at
Ed Steer’s Gold & Silver Digest.
 

A Secret and Illegal Agreement

There certainly doesn’t seem to be a shortage of outrageous behavior recently, when looking at reports of an older Asian-American doctor being dragged off a plane. But where visual images cap a sense of outrage that has crept into the flying experience, sometimes bad behavior is not always captured on phone cameras. Sometimes you have to step back and think about things by reading and considering all the facts.
Last week, I asked you to consider writing to the CFTC and your elected representatives yet again in regard to a letter I sent to the two key appointees who are primarily responsible for guarding against market manipulation. In the letter, I highlighted the case for a silver manipulation. Today, I would like to point out just how upside down this whole thing has become.
The CFTC’s main purpose or primary mission is to prevent manipulation and ensure market integrity. Neither you nor I chose this as the agency’s prime mission, it was assigned by congress and commodity law. While not large by government standards, the CFTC is allocated more than $250 million annually and employs around 700 full time employees to fulfill its mission against manipulation and fraud in the regulated commodity markets.
To advance its prime mission, the agency actively solicits tips from the public in its quest to uncover wrongdoing and has instituted a formal whistleblower program designed to reward those who step forward to report wrongdoing. Sounds like a fairly formidable effort against market manipulation and fraud – a quarter of a billion taxpayer dollars annually, 700 full time employees and programs designed to generate tips and complaints from the public. One might think with resources like that, market manipulation wouldn’t stand a chance. Think again.
Those raising the allegations of a silver manipulation, like myself and others, have, basically, zero funds and zero employees budgeted towards raising the allegations of a silver manipulation. The allegations are driven simply by observing price action and COMEX positioning changes, as reported in the COT reports. Despite the programs designed to encourage and generate tips from the public, the record indicates that the CFTC has become downright hostile and unwilling to openly discuss any allegations of a COMEX silver manipulation, even though the allegations are based upon Commission data. Talk about upside down.

This post was published at SilverSeek on April 20, 2017 –.