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10.23.19 - Gold is 'God's Money’ -Robert Kiyosaki

Gold last traded at $1,495 an ounce. Silver at $17.58 an ounce.

NEWS SUMMARY: Precious metal prices rose Wednesday on bargain-hunting and Brexit uncertainty. U.S. stocks rose as investors focused on earnings reports from Caterpillar and Boeing.

Kiyosaki on the looming market crash, why gold is 'God’s money' -Marketwatch
"Count Robert Kiyosaki, the best-selling author of 'Rich Dad, Poor Dad,' among those basking in the yellow glow of gold’s resurgence....'I've been on the gold standard since 1972,' he said. 'So I've gone through heaven and hell with gold and silver, and now I look like a genius.' Kiyosaki, with a net worth reported to be around $80 million, has been calling for the stock market to crash for a while now....'Gold is God’s money... The Fed has destroyed the monetary system of the world along with its central banks. It has manipulated the market. In my opinion they went criminal... So when I watch Wall Street, I watch the price of stocks and I watch what the Fed is doing - I just get nauseous. I just buy more gold.'"

gold reserves The End Of Fiat In One Chart? -Zero Hedge
"For the first time in 21 years, Germany has openly bought gold into its reserve holdings...With ECB mutiny and Deutsche Bank's rapid demise, fears are rising of a looming financial crisis, and with that, Germany has shown a renewed interest in gold. As a reminder, September's outright purchase of the precious metal comes after Germany’s central bank, the Bundesbank, repatriated 583 tons, or $31 billion worth, of gold in 2017, years ahead of schedule....Of course, while Germany is now the latest to turn to gold as a safe haven store of value in its reserves, it is not the first as the de-dollarization shift has been accelerating in recent months...Germany's shift comes after China's acceleration in gold-buying as Peter Schiff recently noted this a 'global gold rush on the part of central banks' in preparation for a dollar crash. 'The days that the dollar is a reserve currency are numbered and the smart central banks are trying to buy as much gold as they can before the number is up,' Schiff said. Now that the always conservative Germans are back in the market buying gold, one wonders if the end of fiat is drawing closer."

Why confiscatory taxing of the wealthy is a hate crime -Ponte/WND
"Imagine socialist Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in a political debate saying: 'Black people should not exist. I propose that we impose a confiscatory 97.5 percent tax rate on them to make their survival impossible.' We would be outraged at any politician who made such a racist and hate-filled statement. Sen. Sanders has never said any such bigoted thing about African Americans. But earlier this year, newly minted millionaire Sanders declared that 'billionaires should not exist,' and proposed imposing a discriminatory tax of 97.5 percent on them so that such rich people would quickly cease to exist. You might think that people choose to become wealthy, but that you and I do not pick our race. What we call race is vaguely defined by a set of factors such as skin color imposed on us by genetics, our inborn DNA over which we have no choice or control. It is unjust and racist to hate and punish us for what our genes created. But recent research at Kings College London and Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, finds that 37 to 48 percent of the tendency to be an entrepreneur is genetic. 'The tendency to identify new business opportunities,' reported Inc. Magazine about this scientific research, 'is in your genes.'....If becoming rich has a genetic component, then Richism - hatred and envy of the rich - is just as immoral and should be just as illegal as racism. Too bad for the Democrats, socialists and Marxists that their ideology and hence their political power has been built on preaching that we need to 'soak,' hate and assault the wealthy....'American exceptionalism' exists because for centuries those with a craving for freedom and opportunity have brought their DNA here. As Craig R. Smith and I documented in The Inflation Deception, those self-selected pioneers came here with an exceptional proportion of what UCLA Psychiatrist Peter C. Whybrow surmises is what geneticists call D4-7 dopamine receptor alleles in our DNA."

The path to carbon free flows through hydropower -The Hill
"Decarbonizing our national electricity grid is a worthy aspiration, and getting there is attainable. But, while solar, wind and battery storage may grab the headlines, a simple truth is often overlooked - we can't achieve deep decarbonization of our electricity system without hydropower. Why? Because hydropower is the nation's first renewable resource, providing clean, carbon-free energy to roughly 30 million Americans, and 40 percent of the United States' overall renewable electricity. In addition, hydropower is flexible enough to integrate increasing amounts of wind and solar onto the grid...Representing 95 percent of the nation's energy storage, pumped storage hydropower facilities are like sponges; they absorb excess energy from the grid and store it for later. All of which is to say, hydropower is the renewable resource that integrates the other renewables....Reaching a 100 percent clean energy target is a moonshot that states throughout the country are increasingly attempting. Some states understand the value of hydropower's contribution. Washington state, for example, passed legislation requiring 100 percent clean electricity by 2045. The bill allows all existing hydropower generation to be used for compliance, and for hydropower to generate renewable energy credits."

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10.22.19 - Capitalism Helps Protect the Environment

Gold last traded at $1,487 an ounce. Silver at $17.50 an ounce.

NEWS SUMMARY: Precious metal prices paused Tuesday as investors digested market outlook. U.S. stocks traded mixed as investors pored through a slew of key earnings from companies such as United Technologies, Procter & Gamble and McDonald's.

U.S. Companies Preparing for Long-Term 'Confrontational Relationship' With China -Wall Street Journal
"U.S. companies are preparing for tensions with China to extend far beyond the status of the continuing trade discussions, an executive for the U.S.-China Business Council said Monday. 'When we talk to companies, there's a realization that no matter what happens with this trade deal, we're going down a trajectory of a much more confrontational relationship with China that's very unlikely to shift in the opposite direction in the future,' Jacob Parker, vice president of China operations for the council, said. The council represents about 220 U.S. companies that conduct business in China. Businesses are making arrangements to diversify their supply-chain investments away from the China market and enacting other structural changes to account for that, Mr. Parker said. It could take about three to five years to build up the supply chain elsewhere, he added....The long-term effects of the tariff dispute could affect some companies' financial positions and credit ratings as well as the loss of long-term supply contracts, said Ted Pokorski, the director of treasury at Regal Beloit Corp., a Beloit, Wis.-based maker of electric motors, who also spoke on the panel. A survey of U.S.-China Business Council members in August said that optimism about China is at a historic low, adding that more businesses are halting their investment in the country and only a slight majority of companies expect their revenue in China to rise next year."

central bankers The Feds Add Liquidity to Sustain Economic Expansion -Bonner/Bonner And Partners
"When you know what cards the biggest, dumbest, richest, drunkest player will lay on the table… you ought to be able to profit from it....Neither markets nor economies will be allowed to exhale or retreat - not if the authorities at the Fed can prevent it. And they believe - against all evidence, logic, and reason - that they can stop it with 'liquidity.' When the going gets tough, they say, they'll add more juice. Heck, they won't even wait for the going to get tough. Now, they're adding some 'insurance liquidity,' like a glass of sherry in the afternoon to keep their spirits up. The Wall Street Journal reports: 'The Federal Reserve Bank of New York injected $104.15 billion in temporary liquidity into financial markets Thursday. The intervention came in two parts. One was via a term-repurchase-agreement operation that will last for 15 days that added $30.65 billion. The other was via a one-day repo operation that totaled $73.5 billion.' But it won't be long before the authorities bring out the hard stuff - even more liquidity. And this noxious brew comes in only one form - new money. It is the money launched in 1971, which has since lost 97% of its value, compared to the pre-1971 model. How to front-run the feds' cheap new money? Simple: Just hold on to the old money - gold....As our old friend Richard Russell put it, coming up is the most vicious, dangerous, devastating melee in U.S. financial history. But when the dust settles, gold will be the last man standing."

How an emergency fund can help your retirement savings -USA Today
"When it comes to preparing for retirement, saving is only half the battle....Unexpected expenses are a part of life. Your old car finally gave out and you need to buy a new one. Your basement flooded and requires costly repairs. Or a sudden injury led to a trip to the hospital. These types of costs are bound to pop up, but they can be detrimental in retirement. Because you're living on a fixed income in retirement, you likely don't have much wiggle room in your budget....That's where the emergency fund comes in. When you have a solid emergency fund in retirement, you have a designated place to pull cash from when an unexpected expense inevitably crops up. That helps protect your retirement savings, guaranteeing that your money lasts for as long as possible....Exactly how much you should save depends on multiple factors, such as how long you expect to spend in retirement and what your current savings look like. If you plan to retire early or have reason to believe you'll be spending several decades in retirement, you'll need a larger emergency fund."

Breathe free: Capitalism helps protect the environment -Washington Times
"A recent Rasmussen poll found 20% of voters feel we should eliminate capitalism to protect the environment. That's like saying we should eliminate teachers to improve education. Truth be told, capitalism has helped cleanse our planet - improving living standards while protecting the environment. Rather than eliminate capitalism, policymakers need to unleash it. Markets incentivize efficiency by rewarding people for coming up with ways to do more or do better with less. People choose - and businesses make - more efficient products because it saves them money while delivering what customers want. Over the past decade, market forces have driven a massive transition within the energy industry. In 2008, coal provided roughly half of the country's electricity generation. Now, coal's share is about a quarter. Increased production of natural gas has driven energy bills and emissions downward. The Nuclear Energy Institute organized nuclear power plants nationally to find operating efficiencies that have reduced costs by 19%, saving consumers $1.6 billion and keeping emissions-free electricity in the marketplace....Investments in cement, steel, plastic and other building materials will make our houses and highways sturdier and our products more durable - with a smaller environmental footprint....When America and the rest of the world embrace policies rooted in economic freedom, both prosperity and the environment flourish. In this instance, you really can have your cake and eat it, too."

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10.21.19 - Russia & China Buy Gold, Not Bitcoin

Gold last traded at $1,488 an ounce. Silver at $17.60 an ounce.

NEWS SUMMARY: Precious metal prices traded mixed Monday as investors digested market risks. U.S. stocks traded moderately higher, boosted by optimism around U.S.-China trade talks as well as the corporate earnings season.

Russia and China Are Buying Gold, Not Bitcoin -Analyst/UToday
"Chris Mancini, the analyst of Gabelli Gold Funds, hasn't changed his stance on Bitcoin. In his latest interview with Kitco, he claims that gold, not its digital competitor, will be used as a hedge currency in case of a potential economic crisis. 'The Russian government, the Chinese government are buying gold. They are not buying Bitcoin. That's the ultimate play. That the ultimate currency. That's what the governments are going to tie their currencies to if and when something really bad happens.' During his previous appearance on Kitco in June, Mancini called the top cryptocurrency 'corrupted.' He particularly lambasted BTC's controversial forks (Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin SV) that are allegedly the source of this corruption). Meanwhile, he called gold 'the creation of God,' which drew the ire of many cryptocurrency proponents on social media....The Bitcoin vs. gold debate has reignited in 2019 in the light of Grayscale's 'Drop Gold' campaign...While gold is outdated, its digital version is too volatile to become a viable replacement. Peter Schiff of Euro Pacific Capital recently predicted that the price of Bitcoin could soon drop below the $2,000 level due to a bearish chart formation."

growth Ray Dalio says the world is in a 'great sag,' echoes the 1930s -CNBC
"Speaking a CNBC-moderated panel at the IMF and World Bank annual meetings in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, Ray Dalio said it was now too late for central banks to make much difference as economies enter a natural downturn. 'This cycle is fading, we are now in the world in what I would call a 'great sag',' said Dalio, adding that monetary policy, and especially interest rate reductions, were unlikely to offer much stimulus...Dalio said the world was also experiencing the biggest wealth gap since the 1930s and that was creating political stress....Dalio told the CNBC panel that China's new swagger was further evidence that the world now echoes the depression era of the last century. 'Also like the 1930s, we have a rising power challenging an existing world power in the form of China-U.S. challenges.' The hedge fund titan claimed there were four types of war to watch for - trade, technology, currency and geopolitical."

Financial Markets Face Fresh Wave of Political Uncertainty: 'There's Literally Nowhere to Hide' -Wall Street Journal
"The U.S.-China trade war, Britain leaving the EU and impeachment proceedings in the U.S. are just some of the major political obstacles facing investors. Adding to the uncertainty are the Turkish military operation in Syria, attacks on Saudi oil production and social unrest spanning from Hong Kong to Barcelona. In response, some investors are boosting holdings of cash and other assets that tend to hold their value when markets turn rocky....One index, which captures a range of political and economic uncertainties, rose in August to its highest level on record in data that go back to 1997. It was even more extreme than after previous events such as the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the SARS outbreak in Hong Kong, the European debt crisis and the 2016 U.S. presidential election....'In some ways, there's literally nowhere to hide today,' said Michael Parker, director of research and head of strategy for Asia-Pacific at Bernstein Research in Hong Kong....Many investors have turned to haven investments and hedges involving futures and options in case volatility returns. Esty Dwek, head of global market strategy at Natixis Investment Managers, said she favors gold...given the ever-changing geopolitical backdrop."

Bank heads warn of looming liquidity crisis -Axios
"A growing number of market analysts are voicing concerns that the repo market shock in September may have been the first signal of a wide-ranging liquidity shortage, and now those warnings are being echoed by the heads of major banks...Even with the Fed's commitment to pump $60 billion a month into financial markets, there still may not be enough funding because of regulations, changes to market structure, and banks' desire to keep their reserve levels high. Strategist from JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America sent recent notes also warning of the funding issues. Additionally, the increase of passive investments and major flows from pension funds and large asset managers into private equity funds is drying out typical sources of liquidity to the stock market and could mean major outflows in the face of bad news....The shadow banking sector is largely private and little is known about how much money the insurance companies, hedge funds, private equity funds and payday lenders that make up the industry actually have. IIF president and CEO Tim Adams likened it to the market for mortgage-backed securities before the housing bubble burst in 2007, triggering the global financial crisis."

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10.18.19 - Darkening Outlook for U.S.-China Trade Deal

Gold last traded at $1,494 an ounce. Silver at $17.57 an ounce.

NEWS SUMMARY: Precious metal prices traded steady Friday on a weaker dollar. U.S. stocks fell amid weak overseas data while Netflix led Big Tech shares lower.

A darkening outlook for phase 1 of the U.S.-China trade deal -Axios
"The outlook for a meaningful U.S.-China trade deal continues to deteriorate, as the House passed a bill supporting protesters in Hong Kong and China reportedly backtracked on part of the deal it agreed to last week. The House bill would require an annual review of whether Hong Kong is truly separate from Beijing to the point that it justifies the special trading status it receives under U.S. law and would implement sanctions against officials 'responsible for undermining fundamental freedoms and autonomy in Hong Kong.' Chinese officials unsurprisingly did not take the news well, accusing the U.S. of a 'political plot' to thwart China'’s development. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that it would take strong measures against the U.S. if the bill passed. Bloomberg reported that Chinese officials are seeking a rollback of $50 billion in tariffs before agreeing to raise purchases of U.S. agriculture to the $40-$50 billion range President Trump said was agreed to in the so-called phase 1 trade deal."

gold Why Global Investors Want Access to China's Gold Market -The Street
"Much of the rise of China's gold market comes from the development and growth of the Shanghai Gold Exchange, founded in 2002 by the People's Bank of China, the nation's central bank. In its almost 20 years of existence, the SGE has become the world's largest physical gold exchange. China's government and policy makers created the SGE to be the only official platform for gold in the country, says Samson Li, senior metals analyst, GFMS Refinitiv. All gold imports, domestically mined gold and recycled gold trade through the exchange. 'In order to push the dominance of the SGE further, the Chinese government has also implemented several other policies, including no VAT (value-added tax) on gold purchases, unless a profit is made....According to Metal Focus, China mines 11.5 percent of the global gold output, making it the world's largest gold producer, with 404.1 metric tons produced in 2018...Investors in the Asian nation bought 308 metric tons of physical gold, representing 28.6 percent of worldwide physical gold buying in 2018. Central bank gold buying also contributes to China's gold appetite....Gold's price in non-U.S. dollar terms are already at historical highs. 'The strength of the dollar has hindered the upside in the dollar gold price, which has not been telling the whole story on the global demand for gold,' Li says....Gold often acts as a safe-haven investment for Chinese nationals, too... 'Gold has become one of the most logical investments for the Chinese community,' he says."

Trump's Inner Circle Pushed Him To Cave To China And Cut Trade Deal -Zero Hedge
"As Larry Kudlow transitioned into the role of parroting the administration's economic message on cable news shows, he told his interviewers about the concept of 'fair trade'. Kudlow explained that while he's a believer in free trade, the Chinese have been taking advantage of the US for decades, and that he supports President Trump's efforts to put a stop to it. With that, Kudlow became the White House's preeminent 'fair trade' warrior. As WSJ reported Friday morning, Kudlow last week organized a meeting in the Oval Office with 'outside experts' on trade who reportedly warned Trump that further escalation of the US-China trade war might threaten the stability of the American economy, and hurt Trump's election chances. It's the first sign yet that even Trump's top economic advisors are pushing him to cave to Beijing and strike a deal on trade that would, in all likelihood, involve raising most, if not all, of the tariffs that Washington has imposed on Chinese goods....Since agreeing with Vice Premier Liu He last Friday on a 'handshake' deal for 'Phase One' of a US-China trade pact, reports this week have suggested that the two sides aren't so solid....Trump is 'under immense pressure from Wall Street and those members of the Senate that are aligned with the big donors to get rid of tariffs,' said Stephen Bannon, former White House chief strategist and an ally of Mr. Navarro on China. 'If they have to roll out 'free market' economists that have served as Wall Street's biggest cheerleaders to go down to the Oval and try to convince him to do it, they will.'"

Religion Is on the Decline as More Adults Check 'None' -Wall Street Journal
"Religiosity in the U.S. is in sharp decline, according to a study released by the Pew Research Center on Thursday, with the ranks of people who don’t adhere to any faith growing fast while church attendance has fallen steeply. Christians make up 65% of the U.S. adult population, according the 2018-2019 study, down from 77% in 2009. At the same time, those who don't identify with any religion - often known as 'nones' - now make up more than a quarter of the population, compared with 17% a decade ago....The data reflect a seismic social reordering that has seen the population shift away from Christianity and toward religious disaffiliation. Some 'nones' are atheists or agnostics, while others consider themselves to be spiritual but don't adhere to a particular religious tradition. Every age group, racial group and region of the country is less Christian than a decade ago, according to the study. Less than half of millennials, the youngest demographic group in the study, identify as Christian; 40% of them are unaffiliated....Those who identify as 'nothing in particular' rose to 17% from 12%. Non-Christian religions largely held steady. Jews remain at 2% of the population and Muslims are at 1%."

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