2 Reasons to be Bullish on Gold
By Cullen Roche - PragCap.com
Just some random gold thoughts here via David Rosenberg's 2013 outlook:
"Gold is also a hedge against financial instability and when the world is awash with over $200 trillion of household, corporate and government liabilities, deflation works against debt servicing capabilities and calls into question the integrity of the global financial system. This is why gold has so much allure today. It is a reflection of investor concern over the monetary stability, and Ben Bernanke and other central bankers only have to step on the printing presses whereas gold miners have to drill over two miles into the ground (gold production is lower today than it was a decade ago – hardly the same can be said for fiat currency).
Recent gold price take down is like what happened before the big take-off in the late 70s recalls Jim Sinclair
By: Peter Cooper - GoldSeek.com
The recent falls in the gold price are absolutely nothing to worry about for long-term investors who have a gold price target way off the present scale, and this is a repeat of the take down in gold that happened in the late 1970s just before the big price take-off, says the 70's gold king who made it all happen then.
Jim Sinclair offers a unique perspective on gold from the position of an old-timer who made a fortune from great timing. Past success does not guarantee future success but choosing your market guides on this basis is surely better than not doing so.
Your 2013 Guide to Investing in Gold
BY WILLIAM PATALON III, Executive Editor, Money Morning
….Insights on Investing in Gold
His answer: Physical bullion remains a top play; the physical metal is a vehicle for profit, and will serve as an excellent hedge against inflation and the many problems that remain in both the global and domestic U.S. economies.
Precious Metals "Under Pressure" Ahead of Year-End, US "Due to Hit Debt Ceiling This Monday" says Geithner
By: Ben Traynor - GoldSeek.com
London Gold Market Report
U.S. DOLLAR gold prices traded above $1650 an ounce Thursday morning, in line with where they started the week, as the London market reopened following Christmas.
Silver meantime hovered either side of $30 an ounce, while stock markets edged higher and the Dollar fell, following news that the US Treasury is to take extraordinary measures to avoid hitting the federal debt ceiling next Monday.
The Coming Isolation of the USDollar
BY JIM WILLIE - FinancialSense.com
The typical human reaction to any infection, vermin, danger, or toxicity is to stand back, to isolate the agent, to trap it, to prevent its further spread or release, then to remove it in a safe secure way if possible using trained professionals. Eventually decisions must be made on the level of acceptable risk on the removal, like what is willing to be lost or damaged or killed in the process. Risk analysis, cost trade-offs, and minimization decisions must be evaluated and executed. The toxic agent in global trade, global banking, and globalbond market is the USDollar.
Fiscal Cliff Diving
Republicans will get a better deal if they stop negotiating behind closed White House doors and force the Senate to vote on a plan. In other words, if they follow the Constitution.
By PETER FERRARA - Spectator.org
Remember your high school civics, when your teacher explained the process for passing federal legislation in Washington?
First the Speaker of the House goes to ask permission to pass proposed legislation from the Emperor in the White House. If the Speaker does not get the Emperor's approval before trying to pass a bill, then he is just wasting everyone's time. Further, if the Senate does not agree with what the House has passed, the Senate Majority Leader can just say the magic incantation, "Dead on Arrival," and the Speaker of the House skips town.
Ten Economic Questions For 2013
Here are some questions I'm thinking about ...
By Bill McBride - CalculatedRiskBlog.com
1) US Policy: This is probably the biggest downside risk for the US economy in 2013. I assume some sort of fiscal agreement will be reached soon, but how much austerity will be included? What will happen with the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)? What about emergency unemployment benefits? What about extending the mortgage relief for debt forgiveness (important for short sales)?
16 Things About 2013 That Are Really Going To Stink
By Michael Snyder - TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com
The beginning of the year has traditionally been a time of optimism when we all look forward to the exciting things that are going to happen over the next 12 months. Unfortunately, there are a whole bunch of things about 2013 that we already know are going to stink. Taxes are going to go up, good paying jobs will continue to leave the country, small businesses will continue to be destroyed, the number of Americans living in poverty will continue to soar, our infrastructure will continue to decay, global food supplies will likely continue to dwindle and the U.S. national debt will continue to explode. Our politicians continue to pursue the same policies that got us into this mess, and yet they continue to expect things to magically turn around. But that is not the way that things work in the real world. Bad decisions lead to bad outcomes. Instead of realizing that what we are doing is not working, our "leaders" continue to give us more of the same. As a result, there are going to be a lot of things about 2013 that will not be great. Sticking our heads in the sand and pretending that everything will be "okay" somehow is not going to help anyone. We've got to make people understand exactly what is happening and why it is happening if we ever hope to see real changes.
Prospects for Cliff Deal Dim
With Time Running Out, Any Agreement
Is Expected to Be Limited in Scope
By JANET HOOK and CAROL E. LEE - WSJ.com
Congress and the White House took small steps toward breaking the budget impasse Thursday, but Democrats and Republicans grew increasingly fearful they won't be able to avert the tax increases and spending cuts known as the fiscal cliff, a prospect that is unnerving consumers and investors.
President Barack Obama invited congressional leaders to the White House Friday afternoon for a last-ditch effort to broker a deal, as the Senate returned to Washington Thursday. House GOP leaders said in a Thursday conference call with Republicans, who are growing nervous about their party being blamed for the deadlock, that the House will reconvene Sunday evening.
Reid: 'Fiscal cliff' deal unlikely
By Ramsey Cox - TheHill.com
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Thursday said it is likely too late for Congress to pull the nation back from the "fiscal cliff."
Speaking on the Senate floor, Reid castigated Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) for sending members of the House back to their districts last week after he was forced to scrap his "Plan B" tax plan for lack of support.
Higher Taxes for All:
The Dems' Terrible Fallback Plan for the Fiscal Cliff
By Matthew O'Brien - TheAtlantic.com
So, the fiscal cliff. Barring a semi-miraculous breakthrough, it looks like it will be around until at least January. In other words, a deal is not close. That's left both sides scrambling for a backup plan, which could leave all of us scrambling for more cash in the new year. Indeed, as Greg Ip of The Economist points out, the fallback option Democrats are talking about now, a bill the Senate passed last summer, wouldn't undo nearly enough of the austerity set to kick in.
Obama's GOP Tax Collectors
Bob Dole in 1982: "We're just trying to avoid going over the cliff": Reagan, Kemp, and "tax the rich."
By JEFFREY LORD - Spectator.org
"I didn't come to Washington to raise taxes." — Congressman Jack Kemp to President Ronald Reagan
Jack Kemp was furious.
Summoned to the White House in 1982 for a one-on-one with President Ronald Reagan — Reagan not only his longtime ideological and political ally but his old boss (as an off-season football quarterback for the Buffalo Bills Kemp had served an internship as a special assistant to the fledgling California Governor Reagan in 1967), now-Congressman Kemp was adamant.
Reagan was being told by all manner of GOP Establishment leadership types like Kansas Senator Bob Dole, the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, that taxes had to be raised as Democrats insisted. The Reagan economic policy was a failure, Reagan was being told. And the Democrats had a deal — a spending reduction of $3 for every $1 in tax cuts. After trying mightily to get Reagan to give up on the third-year of his tax cuts — which Reagan flatly refused — Dole made his pitch for an increase in business and excise taxes. Based on the idea of those corresponding budget cuts, Reagan reluctantly went along.
Obama calls Hill leaders for Friday cliff talks
House to reconvene for unusual Sunday evening session
By Robert Schroeder and Greg Robb, MarketWatch
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — President Barack Obama has called congressional leaders to come to the White House on Friday in a last ditch effort to avert the fiscal cliff.
Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, House Speaker John Boehner, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi are expected to attend the meeting.
White House officials, McConnell and Boehner all confirmed plans for the meeting.
Bankers with Borders
Howard Davies - Project-Syndicate.org
LONDON – When Mark Carney replaces Mervyn King as Governor of the Bank of England in July 2013, the world will be deprived of King's witty public utterances. My personal favorite came when, commenting on strong retail-sales figures during one Christmas period, he cast doubt on their significance for assessing the state of the economy. "The true meaning of the story of Christmas" he solemnly intoned, "will not be revealed until Easter, or possibly much later." A new career on the stage, or in the pulpit, surely beckons.
Major borrowers to reduce bank deposits: Fed survey
(Reuters) - Wall Street dealers expect hedge funds, insurance companies and other borrowers to pull some cash from commercial banks when a financial crisis-era deposit insurance program expires at the end of the year, the Federal Reserve said on Thursday.
The U.S. central bank's quarterly survey of senior credit officers found that most expect their clients to get rid of at least some commercial bank deposits and instead park their cash in securities such as repurchase agreements, money market funds or Treasury bills.
U.S. Treasury, Trying to Duck Borrowing Limit,
Will Stop Investing in Gov't Retirement Funds
BY CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER, AP - CNSNews.com
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Treasury Department will begin taking steps on Friday to delay hitting the government's $16.4 trillion borrowing limit on Dec. 31.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said in a letter Wednesday to congressional leaders that the department will use accounting measures to save approximately $200 billion. That could keep the government from reaching the limit for about two months.
Consumer confidence slides from 'cliff'
By Peter Schroeder - TheHill.com
Consumer confidence is continuing to slide as the threat of the "fiscal cliff" draws near with little sign of progress from policymakers.
The benchmark Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index posted its second straight month of decline in December, and consumer expectations have fallen "sharply."
Consumer confidence now stands at 65.1, down from 71.5 in November; a score of 100 represents the optimistic economic outlook of 1985. And the expectations index now pegs consumer outlook at 66.5, down from 80.9 just one month ago.
Spain's house prices to fall another 30pc as glut keeps growing
Spain's property slump will deepen for much of the next decade, and tracts of buildings along the Mediterannean coast will have to be demolished, the country's top consultants have warned.
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard - Telegraph.co.uk
RR de Acuña & Asociados expects home prices in Madrid, Barcelona and other major cities to fall a further 30pc in a relentless slide until 2018, but it may be even worse in sunbelt regions where 400,000 Britons either live or own homes.
Fresh losses could reach 50pc and drag on for 10 to 15 years in those places where construction ran wild during the bubble, bringing the total decline from peak to trough towards 75pc.
Household debt burden hits 29-year low
By Lucia Mutikani
(Reuters) - A measure of the burden of household debt tumbled in the third quarter to its lowest level in 29 years, which should help free up money for consumer spending and support the economy.
The household debt service ratio -- an estimate of the share of debt payments to disposable personal income -- fell to 10.61 percent from 10.72 percent in the second quarter, the Federal Reserve said on Thursday.
It was the lowest level since the fourth quarter of 1983.
Obama's Phony Fannie, Freddie 'Reform'
The White House is taking Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the wrong direction. Instead of reforming the toxic mortgage twins as promised, it's broadening their role.
Even as taxpayer losses from the failed mortgage giants have hit $187 billion, the administration has done nothing to address the problem except sending Congress a report that pays lip service to reforms.
New Home Sales and Distressing Gap
by Bill McBride - CalculatedRiskBlog.com
New home sales have averaged 363,000 on an annual rate basis through November. That means sales are on pace to increase 18%+ from last year. Most sectors would be pretty happy with an 18% increase in sales.
But even with the significant increase this year, 2012 will be the 3rd lowest year for New Home sales since the Census Bureau started tracking new home sales in 1963. This year will be above 2010 and 2011, but below the 375,000 sales in 2009. I expect new home sales to double from here within the next several years as distressed sales continue to decline.
White House Wants to Expand Refis
for Underwater Borrowers: Report
The Obama administration may be looking to expand the number of borrowers who can refinance their mortgages.
The White House is considering a proposal that would authorize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to guarantee repayment by borrowers whose homes are underwater and whose mortgages aren't backed by the government, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.
The move would require Congress to authorize a change to the companies' charters that would allow Fannie and Freddie to back billions of dollars in loans and to charge higher rates to borrowers to offset the risk.
For Four Retailers, Do or Die
The New Year Has New Urgency for Best Buy, RadioShack, J.C. Penney and Sears
By ANN ZIMMERMAN And DANA MATTIOLI - WSJ.com
While 2013 will be a tough year for retailers due to the tepid economic recovery, a few in particular face a critical 12 months. Their experiences highlight the challenges facing store chains, from increasingly cautious consumers to fierce online competition.
These unlucky retailers are going into the New Year with extra woes: slipping sales, questionable strategies and tight finances—which is why they are the ones to watch, and not in a good way.
Possible strike at docks
would cripple key U.S. ports, hurt economy
By Brad Plumer and Michael A. Fletcher - WashingtonPost.com
Thousands of dockworkers from Baltimore to Houston are threatening to go on strike this Sunday over their pay, a move that could throttle an array of key ports and disrupt commerce at a critical juncture for the economy.
Nearly half of the nation's ocean-bound container traffic runs through the 14 threatened ports on the East Coast and Gulf Coast, and a work stoppage would crimp imports of household goods, clothing and frozen foods, among others. The biggest hub, in the New York area, handled $208 billion worth of goods last year.
Senate vote begins on reauthorizing surveillance programs
By Ramsey Cox and Jennifer Martinez - TheHill.com
Senate began voting Thursday on a bill reauthorizing the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
Senators debated the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act for seven hours before starting to vote on amendments to the legislation. The bill would extend for five years the ability of U.S. intelligence authorities to surveil terrorists overseas without first getting permission from a court.
Government Dependents Outnumber
Those With Private Sector Jobs In 11 U.S. States
By Michael Snyder - TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com
America is rapidly becoming a nation of takers. An increasing number of Americans expect the government to take care of them from the cradle to the grave, and they expect the government to dig into the pockets of others in order to pay for it all. This philosophy can be very seductive, but what happens when the number of takers eventually outnumbers the number of producers? In 11 different U.S. states, the number of government dependents exceeds the number of private sector workers. This list of states includes some of the biggest states in the country: California, New York, Illinois, Ohio, Maine, Kentucky, South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, New Mexico and Hawaii. It is interesting to note that seven of those states were won by Barack Obama on election night. InCalifornia, there are 139 "takers" for every 100 private sector workers. That is crazy! The American people have become absolutely addicted to government money, and it gets worse with each passing year. If you can believe it, entitlements accounted for 62 percent of all federal spending in fiscal year 2012. It would be one thing if we could afford all of this spending, but unfortunately we simply cannot. We aredrowning in debt, and we are stealing more than a hundred million more dollars from future generations with each passing hour. No bank robber in history can match that kind of theft.
Is Obama About to Betray Those Who Re-Elected Him
Less Than Two Months Ago?
by SCOTT HARRIS - CounterPunch.org
One of the most contentious issues in the current "fiscal cliff" negotiations that's angering progressive activists is President Obama's offer to the GOP to change the way cost of living adjustments are made to Social Security benefits. According to economists working with the group Social Security Works, moving to what is called a "chained" consumer price index will reduce benefits for the average 65-year-old by about $6,000 in the first 15 years of retirement, and $16,000 over 25 years.
I'm not surprised, but still angry. Obama has always been a failure as a negotiator with Republicans. He reliably makes major concessions before negotiations even begin – and in exchange for little or nothing from the other side.
A Conservative Case For The Welfare State
By Bruce Bartlett, Economix
At the root of much of the dispute between Democrats and Republicans over the so-called fiscal cliff is a deep disagreement over the welfare state. Republicans continue to fight a long-running war against Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and many other social-welfare programs that most Americans support overwhelmingly and oppose cutting.
Republicans in Congress opposed the New Deal and the Great Society, but Republican presidents from Dwight D. Eisenhower through George H.W. Bush accepted the legitimacy of the welfare state and sought to manage it properly and fund it adequately. When Republicans regained control of Congress in 1994 they nevertheless sought to repeal the New Deal and Great Society programs they had always opposed.
Tea Party Turmoil: FreedomWorks' Dick Armey
Takes $8 Million Exit Buyout After Failed Coup
Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey attempted a coup within his own tea party-linked nonprofit FreedomWorks earlier this year. When that failed, he took an $8 million payout from a millionaire Republican donor to leave. The incident highlighted what is believed to be growing turmoil inside the tea party movement after it rose to prominence ahead of the 2010 election. We're joined by Politico reporter Kenneth Vogel."
Piers Morgan: 'It's Time For an Amendment to the Bible'
By Elizabeth Harrington - CNSNews.com
(CNSNews.com) – After his gun-control views landed him on a petition to be deported from the United States, CNN host Piers Morgan is now contending "it's time for an amendment to the Bible" because, like the Constitution, it is "inherently flawed."
In an interview that was broadcast on Christmas Eve, Morgan told evangelical Pastor Rick Warren that due to changing cultural views on gay marriage the Bible, too, must be changed.
BARNEY FRANK NOT RULING OUT KERRY'S SENATE SEAT
by BREITBART NEWS
With Ted Kennedy Jr. ruling out a run for John Kerry's senate seat, eyes turned to Barney Frank as a potential replacement. In an interview last week, Frank demurred but added he would not necessarily say "no" should he be offered an interim appointment.
Governor Deval Patrick is tasked with the job of replacing Kerry until a special election is held in 2014. Barney Frank is retiring from the House of Representatives at the end of the year after a 30+ year tenure.
Gallup Poll: 54% Have Favorable Opinion of the NRA
By Daniel Doherty - Townhall.com
While some on the Left have demonized the National Rifle Association on Twitter and other social media platforms (indeed, one "educator" even called for the execution of NRA spokesman Wayne LaPierre) in the days since the unspeakable tragedy at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, a majority of Americans (albeit a slim majority) continue to view the NRA favorably:
Liberals Who Cling to Their Guns
Next thing we'll learn is that they're big on designer guns.
By AARON GOLDSTEIN - Spectator.org
Few things animate the ire of liberals more than the right to bear arms. Liberals loathe the Second Amendment and when horrific tragedies like the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut rear their ugly head, they are quick on the draw to call for more gun control. But just don't ask liberals to practice what they preach.
Senator Dianne Feinstein of California is readying legislation to re-introduce a ban on assault weapons. Yet, as Mark Levin pointed out, Feinstein owned a concealed firearm. She said, "If somebody tries to take me out I'm going to take them with me."
Facebook Purges Pro-Gun Accounts
Massive act of censorship
sees alternative media pages disappeared
By Paul Joseph Watson - Infowars.com
Facebook is purging accounts that carry pro-second amendment and pro-liberty information in a censorship purge that has accelerated over the past few hours, with innumerable pages being disappeared merely for posting legitimate political content.
NaturalNews.com's Mike Adams contacted us to alert us to the fact that "Facebook banned our account for posting this," with an attached image of a Gandhi quote about how the British disarmed the citizenry during their rule in India.
After the Disaster: American Rebirth or Interment?
By Terence P. Jeffrey - CNSNews.com
America is now in a time that in some ways resembles the 1850s, when freedom-loving people, attentive to political and cultural trends, saw a great crisis coming.
After the Mexican-American War, as Southern slaveholders and their political allies sought to extend the realm of slavery into the West and tip the nation's political and cultural balance to the advantage of slaveholders, many believed liberty was at risk.
S. Korean media: DPRK deploys missiles
South Korean media says the DPRK has deployed more than 900 ballistic missiles at 3 separate sites across the country.
KBS news agency reports that the 3 zones are for the use of the launch of short, middle and long-range missiles. DPRK leader Kim Jong-un is said to have paid a visit to the headquarters in charge of missile launches, which is seen as key to the DPRK's missile deployment.
China opposes US defense act
A spokesman for the Chinese Defense Ministry on Thursday voiced strong opposition to the content concerning China in a U.S. defense authorization act.
"The content is a rude interference in China's internal affairs and harmful to our strategic mutual trust. We are strongly opposed to it," said spokesman Yang Yujun, referring to the U.S. National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013, which contains controversial sections related to the Diaoyu Islands and arms sales to Taiwan.
Syrian rebels sidetracked by scramble for spoils of war
Looting, feuds and divided loyalties threaten to destroy unity of fighters as war enters new phase
By Ghaith Abdul-Ahad in Aleppo - The Guardian
It wasn't the government that killed the Syrian rebel commander Abu Jameel. It was the fight for his loot. The motive for his murder lay in a great warehouse in Aleppo which his unit had captured a week before. The building had been full of rolled steel, which was seized by the fighters as spoils of war.
But squabbling developed over who would take the greater share of the loot and a feud developed between commanders. Threats and counter-threats ensued over the following days.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Archived Page Link
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -