Tunisian Terror Attack Suspects Trained in U.S. “Liberated” Libya

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Libya has turned into a complete and total disaster zone/terrorist training camp ever since America and its allies decided to liberate it. While certainly not perfect under Qaddafi, it was an infinitely better place before NATO intervention than after. Not only that, but the entire justification for the “freedom” delivered to it by Western powers was, naturally, based on lies and propaganda.

Now the abject failure of Libya intervention has creeped into its neighbors’ backyards…

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[KR735] Keiser Report: Capitalism Without Capital?!

We discuss the French being able to work 20 percent less to produce the same amount the average worker in Britain produces. Just as oil frackers must pump faster and faster, harder and harder to keep current on their debt repayments, so too must an overly burdened UK household in a speculative economy producing less and less value. In the second half, Max interviews Aleksandar Vidovic of Salviol about the size of the financial fraud market and what his company is doing to shrink it.


Orwell and Kafka Do America: How the Government Steals Your Money–“Legally,” Of Course

Due process and rule of law have been replaced with “legalized” looting by government in America.

Did you know that the government of Iran steals your cash if they find more than loose change in your car? They don’t arrest you for any crime, for the simple reason you didn’t commit any crime; but it isn’t about crime and punishment–it’s about“legalizing” theft by the state.

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HSBC Not Closing Gold Vaults – Safety Deposit Boxes‏ Being Closed

HSBC Not Closing Gold Vaults – Safety Deposit Boxes‏ Being Closed

- Incorrect rumors abound around blogosphere that HSBC is rapidly and quietly closing gold vaults
- HSBC are in fact closing down their safety deposit box facilities in vaults in branches- Banks internationally closing boxes as not profitable and move to “cashless society”
- Incorrect speculation that HSBC move forcing gold clients to sell bullion
- Speculation understandable given poor communications from HSBC and manipulation of precious metal markets
- Salutary lesson to all – media and blogosphere – to be more rigorous
- Underlines vital importance of owning gold in allocated manner outside financial system

An incorrect rumor that HSBC is rapidly and quietly closing gold vaults where clients gold bullion was stored and gold in the GLD ETF is stored has been swirling around the internet.

Safety Deposit Boxes in Sentinel Vaults in Dublin, Ireland

After conversations with key players in the industry including a bullion dealer who used the safety deposit boxes for storage and delivery to clients, we can now confidently say that the speculation was incorrect.

What HSBC is actually doing is closing its safety deposit box facilities some of which are in vaults and strong rooms in branches. The vaults are not specialist gold vaults rather standard vaults or strong rooms which contain safety deposit boxes. These safety deposit boxes hold all sorts of valuables – from legal documents, to family heirlooms, to art works, to jewellery and of course bullion coins and bars.

Availability of safety deposit boxes is in decline in Britain and much of the world. Costs of security, insurance and opportunity to use such facilities in a more profitable manner are driving the closures. Banks in Ireland including the Bank of Ireland claim that the safety deposit boxes are “causing an unacceptable health, safety and security risk in some branches.”

While the move is understandable from a purely profit motive point of view, it must be remembered that this is a greatly needed service by many people including entrepreneurs and professionals who need to safe keep important legal documents that they are not comfortable keeping in a home or office. It is also a greatly needed service for the elderly and other people who have valuable jewelry and heirlooms that they are uncomfortable keeping in the house.

It is another case of banks blindly pursuing profit ahead of the interests of their own clients.

Banks and insolvent governments desperate for cash likely also dislike safety deposit boxes as they are means for people to protect and grow wealth and protect themselves from inflation and indeed bail-in and deposit confiscation. A percentage of box holders so store cash and bullion.

In our brave new  world of the ‘cashless society’, the financial independence and freedom that a safety deposit box confers upon the citizen is frowned upon.

As a consequence citizens are being deprived of the opportunity of having their savings, valuables and wealth stored outside of the increasingly precarious financial system and digital banking system.

The implications of the rumours were significant. Analysts speculated that a precious metals market disruption might be imminent and with it delivery calls by clients who believe they own physical gold in GLD which HSBC most likely could not meet.

Such an event would likely have a dramatic upward effect on the price of gold not to mention a catastrophic effect on the finances of those who believe they actually own physical gold in ETFs. Irish Finance Minister, Michael Noonan, being one recent buyer of the gold ETF.

The misunderstanding regarding HSBC closing its deposit box facilities had led to speculation by people familiar with the underlying dynamics of precious metals markets. HSBC was implicated in a gold price manipulation scandal last year, and has been fined numerous times in the past decade for an array of corrupt practices.

As “the largest COMEX/NYMEX depository”, according to their website, they are viewed by sceptics as having both a capacity and a track record to manipulate precious metals prices.

This view was compounded back in 2012 when respected analyst, Ned Naylor-Leyland, tracked the serial number of a gold bar that was presented on CNBC as belonging to the GLD ETF, of which HSBC is custodian.

Naylor-Leyland discovered that the bar, in fact belonged to a different ETF – ETF Securities – fuelling speculation that GLD did not have the gold it claimed to be in possession of and that gold is rehypothecated.

The recent misunderstanding regarding HSBC’s gold vaults, when viewed from this perspective, is understandable. Long time observers of the precious metals markets are aware of the price suppression actions that occur.

These include the dumping of contracts for massive volumes of gold onto the market at quiet periods – often after the close of business on the COMEX or after Asian trading and before European markets commence trading. In the absence of demand, the huge supply of paper contracts for gold overwhelms the market forcing the price down and triggering stop losses which then accelerate the sell-offs.

The sellers of these contracts are clearly not looking for the best price for their asset. The aim is to force down the price in illiquid markets. The seller can then buy back contracts for the same volume of gold at a greatly reduced price for a large profit.

The incorrect information regarding the HSBC vaults thus sparked intense speculation that some major developments were afoot in the gold market and HSBC was using the closures to force clients to sell their gold.

However, it is the case that those owning gold in HSBC’s safety deposit boxes do not have to sell their gold and most won’t. They have 60 days to find new secure storage and we are already seeing flows in this regard.

The rapidity with which this information became received wisdom is a salutary lesson for the alternative media and the gold blogosphere. Bloggers need to be rigorous in establishing facts as they will be held to a much higher standard by the mainstream media – higher, even, than the latter sometimes hold for themselves.

It also again underlines the vital importance of owning allocated and segregated gold outside the global banking system, in the safest vaults in the world.

How To Store Gold Bullion – 7 Key Must Haves


MARKET UPDATE

Today’s AM fix was USD 1,193.25, EUR 1,085.56 and GBP 798.96 per ounce.
Yesterday’s AM fix was USD 1,181.40, EUR 1,086.15  and GBP 791.77 per ounce.

Gold climbed 0.625 percent or $7.40 and closed at $1,190.60 an ounce yesterday, while silver surged 1.97 percent or $0.33 at $17.06 an ounce.

Gold in US Dollars - 1 Week

Gold remained firm near its two week high reached yesterday in spite of disappointing Chinese PMI figures. In Singapore, bullion for immediate delivery initially fell prior to gains and was $1,187.46 an ounce near the end of day. These gains continued in European trading.

Dollar weakness in recent days, the chance of Greece leaving the euro and the continuing crisis in the Ukraine are all supporting gold.

John Williams,  San Francisco Fed chief said in Australia yesterday that policymakers should wait no more than a

few months before considering raising U.S. interest rates from their current near-zero level. A Reuters poll of analysts show that they are expecting a U.S. interest rate hike in September now rather than June.

An Airbus operated by Lufthansa’s Germanwings budget airline crashed in southern France on this morning and all 148 on board were feared dead. French President Francois Hollande said he believed none of those on board had survived.”There were 148 people on board,” Hollande said. “The conditions of the accident, which have not yet been clarified, lead us to think there are no survivors.”
In London spot gold in late morning trading is at $1,194.96 or up 0.47 percent. Silver is $17.11 or up 0.25 percent and platinum is $1,147.96 or up 0.06 percent.

Updates and Award Winning Research Here

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Who Left the Crash Window Open?

Can stocks keep hitting new highs even as sales and profits fall?

Given that we live in a world where a modest 3% decline in the stock market triggers panicky demands for more quantitative easing (QE 4), few observers expect much a correction, regardless of the souring fundamentals such as sales and profits.

A correspondent notified me of a Puetz “crash” window (based on the analysis of Stephen J. Puetz) opening in late March-early April. (Since I am not a subscriber to Puetz’s work, I can’t confirm this.) As I understand it, while these windows do not predict a crash/sharp correction, such moves tend to occur in these windows, which are based on cycles and events such as eclipses.

So I decided to look for any evidence that a sharp correction might be in the offing.

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Just Another Tale from the Oligarch Recovery – $100 Million Homes Being Built on Spec

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One of the key points made by Hanauer that I completely agree with is that once so much of society’s wealth becomes increasingly concentrated into fewer and fewer hands, it becomes an enormous drag on society as opposed to conferring any benefits. You get a feudalistic system of a few royals and then the peasant masses. This is happening to the U.S. as we speak.

One of the ways this happens is that corporations take their record profits and rather than invest in plant, equipment, technology or pay workers better wages, push all of the excess earnings into share buybacks. This primarily benefits the richest of the rich; the group that owns financial assets. Even worse, much of these buybacks are being funded by issuing debt at record low interest rates. So not only did oligarchs benefit directly from the Fed’s quantitative easing which has pumped up all financial assets, but they benefit indirectly via record buybacks also enabled by Fed policy. As I’ve said time and time again: The Federal Reserve is a criminal organization primarily designed to provide an endless stream of corporate welfare and bailouts for oligarchs. 

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TSIPRAS IN BERLIN

TSIPRAS IN BERLIN

 

Alexis and Angie are meeting
It should be an interesting greeting
A leaf from a fig?
Or a seat with a pig?
Content to continue the beating
The Limerick King


EU and Greece Running Out of Time – As Bank Runs Intensify, Bail-Ins Likely

EU and Greece Running Out of Time – As Bank Runs Intensify, Bail-Ins Likely

- EU and Greece running out of time as talks end “in disarray” – again
- Greece warns Merkel of ‘impossible’ debt
- Concerns Greece out of money by end of April
- Friday’s “agreement” in Brussels falls apart hours later as protagonists fail to agree on specifics
- Greece now insolvent – will run out of liquidity by end of April
- Greek banks on verge of collapse as runs continue – €1.5 billion emptied out of banks last week alone
- ‘Grexit’ could propel gold to over $2,000/oz
- Cyprus style bail-ins look increasingly possible

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Greece’s place in the Eurozone is as precarious as ever as talks between Prime Minister Tsipras and European leaders in Brussels broke down – hours after reaching general agreement – and Greece warned Germany that it will be “impossible” for Greece to service debt payments due in the coming weeks if the EU fails to provide short-term financial assistance. Read more ›

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Hurry up delivery man. You have £31,000 worth of StartCOIN scratch cards that we want to start giving away this week


On My Mind: Finance and Books

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Classic Financial Reportage

If you read Section C of the U.S. print edition of Thursday’s Wall Street Journal, you were treated to articles about banks trying to dump their souring energy loans, Citi squeezing a pass in this year’s stress test (it failed last year), the systemic ripple effects of the failure of Austria’s Hypo-Alpe-Adria bank (German lenders hold $5.5 billion of the bonds, but Deutsche Bank is “comfortable” with its exposure), and a Wall Street paid advocate claiming regulators are—contrary to what a lady in Chicago asserts–too tough on banks.

According to the people quoted in the WSJ articles, no one saw it coming: lower oil prices, lower housing prices, currency risk. Almost seven years after a global financial crisis, bankers educated at Ivy League schools still just don’t know that kind of stuff.

God’s Bankers

Yes, Chicago is cold in the winter, so what do I do besides work, play in the snow, and play at home? I investigate things that frighten the bankers, including some stuff that isn’t strictly business. If you want to read more non fiction about the history of money and power in the Vatican, I have good news! Gerald Posner has a new book, God’s Bankers, currently in the top 100 on Amazon. I can also recommend an older, in some ways darker book, God’s Banker, by Rupert Cornwell, written more than thirty years ago, when the press was still calling Roberto Calvi’s murder a suicide. There is no Kindle edition, but you can borrow it from your library or purchase it second hand via Amazon. While supplies last, it is a steal plus shipping.

Archangel high res Kindle March 2 210 x 315The Sequel

If all goes well, Vatican Gold, the sequel to my financial fiction (fi-fi) murder mystery, Archangels: Rise of the Jesuits will be ready by Christmas 2015. The Spanish edition, La rebelión de los Jesuitas, minus the sex scenes of the English edition and suitable for 13 and up, is due out before summer.

What Would You Be Willing to Do for Money and Power?

A memoir (in part, inspired by the suicide of my former boss), Decisions: Life and Death on Wall Street, is coming out right on schedule. My editor says the final files have been uploaded and approved by Amazon. The Amazon Kindle version will be released April 4, and the print edition will come out at the same time or shortly thereafter. (This book will not be eligible for discounts and Kindle Countdown deals to enable future wider distribution.)

Unveiled Threat ($0.99 USA, and 0.99 sterling UK through March 25 in honor of POTUS’s address to Iran)

It is a sign of how disconnected and increasing estranged POTUS is that he keeps saying ISIL (meaning the Levant, which includes Israel) , and he can’t make that meme catch on. Most journalists and almost all book authors (including Patrick Cockburn) say ISIS, (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria…yes, I know it spread beyond that, but it does not include Israel, for Pete’s sake).

To my surprise, the President of the United States addressed the people of Iran in a video. If he wants to persuade people to support his unpopular polices, then try persuading U.S. citizens. I am personally opposed to nuclear weapons for Iran. If you read my memoir, Unveiled Threat, you know that I believe he is horribly and dangerously wrong. By the way, “unveiled treat” refers to an unveiled woman.

In honor of truth (fundamentalist Islam teaches submission, not peace), I am offering a special Kindle Countdown deal on Unveiled Threat, through March 25. Another surprise, in the USA it is a popular biography with teens and young adults.

Next Geek Book?

I don’t have a deadline yet. I probably will not update Credit Derivatives or Structured Finance, (the books Michael Burry told the FCIC that he read before putting on his big short), since negotiating with Wiley is like negotiating with the Russians. But I will have books out on special topics: credit, swaps, tax trades. Meanwhile, you can read my free articles on basic definitions and concepts in structured finance.


Alasdair Macleod: Fed Throws in the Towel, “Something is About to Break”

With massive currency volatility & a big jump in gold & silver in the wake of the FOMC statement, Alasdair Macleod joins the show this week discussing:  

  • Massive moves in the dollar are justified, as The Federal Reserve has effectively thrown in the towel on any raise in interest rates! 
  • Is the dollar’s parabolic moon shot over?  Alasdair explains why he is a “Seller of the Dollar” here 
  • A BIG RESET is coming- “Something is about to break” 
  • UK, Germany, France, Italy, & Australia ditch the US, join Chinese/Russian-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank… as  founding members! Putin has played the most extraordinarily brilliant move I have ever seen!” 
  • Alasdair states that when the US tries to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank IT WILL BE REFUSED, and the days of the dollar are basically gone! 
  • SHORT SQUEEZE!  Gold & silver rip higher Friday
  • Macleod explains that “The dollar will begin to weaken when the market begins to realize what has occurred!

Click here for the SD Weekly Metals & Markets With The Doc, Eric Dubin, & Alasdair Macleod:

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Max Keiser reacts to latest UK Budget #budget2015