Hank Paulson's Guarantee, Big Time Politics
Easy Money Japanese Style, Fuzzy Math
Despots on Display
Anti Americanism, The Emperor Has No Clothes!
Tchnical Analysis of Stocks and Gold by: Garrett Jones
Fiat boom, Fiat theft
As regular readers know we have detailed the central bank fiat money phenomenon that has accelerated during the term of Alan Greenspan. His prescription for every financial and/or economic problem was the US treasuries printing press. He has destroyed the dollars purchasing power enormously since his first episode of irresponsibility, which was the 1987 stock market crash. As central bankers and politicians worldwide observed his actions they too began to emulate his irresponsibility. As it created the illusion of prosperity and short-lived soft recessions. Essential to reelection hopes of many a politician, therefore they are hearty endorsers of this course of action (rampant money and credit creation). The world's economies have just enjoyed the best three-year stretch of growth since the early 1970's. At the same time it has also seen the greatest explosion in debt issuance in recorded history. A debt bubble extraordinaire. Debt by its very nature is deflationary as it is a call on future income. Oh and what a call it is. The future liabilities of the governments of the industrialized western world (welfare states) are unimaginable, almost uncountable and unpayable in current dollars.
Greenspans money printing has now beget fiat money creation worldwide as governments compete to devalue their currencies in competition for trade advantages and to reduce the value of their emerging liabilities. A competitive devaluation raceway, a race to the bottom. Most monetary expansion is done through the issuance of debt, mortgage, consumer, government, etc. We can see this inflation in the in the value of assets of all kinds, financial, real estate, commodities as their prices have skyrocketed in terms of paper "FIAT" money. Historically, in Argentina and the Weimar republic this can be seen as every thing went up except the value of the money. The purchasing power of the dollar has declined at an 18% compounded annual rate since 2002. This can be seen in the price of gold in foreign currencies, as gold is breaking out against all major currencies around the world. Now lets look at the charts and do a little work using the rule of seventy-two. The rule of seventy-two is that you can take the number 72 and divide it by a annual growth rate and determine how long it takes to double the price asset on a compounded basis. For example, if something is growing in price at a 11% annual rate, using the rule of seventy two it is calculated; 72 divided by 11 = 6.54. the time it will take to double the underlying number is 6.54 years. Now lets do this to money and credit supply data from around the world.
We will start with the United Kingdom;
Using the rule of seventy 72, 72 divided by 14 = 5.14 years to double the money supply. This implies that asset prices will double in terms of British pounds every 5.14 years and that savings will purchase half of what they do now in 5.14 years. Since some of this plain old money printing from which the government pays its bills with and most of this new money is actually debt. Therefore, reducing the money supply growth rate implies some form of defaults as the debts become unserviceable as the rate of money supply growth does not support the additional new ponzi finance necessary to create a new fool to buy the inflated asset value. It is also problematic that an economy growing 4 to 5 percent per year is creating money at a 14% rate indicating 3.5 British pounds of new debt for every dollar of new GDP.
Of course this is through March 23, as the Federal Reserve quit printing this at that time. Using the rule of seventy-two; 72 divided by 8 the US is doubling the money supply every 9 years. I promise you this number has only grown as the IRAQ war has already cost 550 billion dollars. If you add the money that the government borrows from the Social security trust fund the US deficit soars to over 700 + billion on a yearly basis. The US government's unfunded liabilities have grown from 20 trillion in 2000 to over 47 trillion today according to the GAO, the government accounting office. Real household incomes increased about 100 billion dollars in 2005, while consumer debt was up over 1 trillion. Bush has increased government an astounding 60% since 2000 and with military spending skyrocketing and the US government trying to dominate the world do you think this money and debt creation is going to abate? No way. It is unsustainable and sets the stage for the coming debacle in the US.
Using the rule of 72; 72 divided by 7.9= 9.1 years to double the money supply. Growth in the Euro zone is good if it approaches 2% using the rule of 72 its economy doubles every 36 years!!! This will accelerate as the new Euro zone entrants are growing considerably faster. It is a disaster for the old EU.
Using the rule of 72; 72 divided by 10.3% the supply of money is doubling every 6.99 years. Australia has gotten its external debts in order and has budget surpluses.
Look at this explosive growth, wow. Using the rule of 72; 72 divided by 18.4% they are doubling the size of money and credit every 3.91 years!!! A blistering pace. Remember they sit on over 1 trillion dollars of reserves, and are turning away from more dollars. They are on a worldwide spending spree before the dollar really gets clobbered. Bond market debacle anyone? Think of the danger we face from modern day Smoot Hawley's; Senators Chuck Schumer and Lindsey Graham, and their idea for 27% tariffs on Chinese imports. This is their idea of protecting the poor, raising the costs of what they buy at Wal-Mart and other discounter by 27%. Can you here the trade Unions in the background?
India, just like China, sit on huge reserves of dollars, using the rule of 72; 72 divided by 19.1% = doubling of the money supply every 3.76 years. Phew. Gold anyone?
Russia's money supply growth is 45% year over year; 72 divided by 45 = doubling the money supply every 1.6 years. Once again huge reserves of dollars on their books.
I could keep on going but you get the idea, anyone holding cash is in danger. On the surface nothing bad can happen at this point, as there is lots of cash in the proverbial cookie jar. Pullback in markets will be only temporary as this flood of money has to find a home to try and preserve purchasing power against the powerful central bank money printing machines. Do you really think these governments state inflation accurately?
It is a booming economy courtesy of the illustrations above. It is the theft of savings by government as they destroy the values of those currencies held in bank accounts and fixed income instruments. It is the cheating of retirees "current and future" who get pensions that constantly lose value. It is the destruction of purchasing power of current workers as they only can buy less with each new paycheck. It is the destruction of lenders who lend money based upon government inflation measures. Remember several editions ago when I published the chart of pre Clinton era CPI overlaid with the current calculations showing 2+ percent of understated inflation.
You can expect inflation to accelerate as this dawns on people. The definition of inflation is spending your money now because you believe prices will be higher in the future, this is the definition of inflation!!! Economies will continue to grow on the headline number after stated inflation, not real inflation. There is lots of money around so any market set backs are temporary as money is seeking returns, no matter how much risk. Just look at the spread on treasuries versus junk bonds or emerging debt. This cash hoard is chasing RETURNS. If you buy a US T Bill that yields 5% it takes 14.4 years to double the money while the governments double their money supplies every 2 to 9 years, and of course M3 is a lie!!! What about holders of 10-year notes and longer dated treasuries of any government, these people are big LOSERS. What is supposed to be the safest investments in the world "government bonds" are actually government sponsored theft! The world is booming on the back of a wave of fiat money and debt creation. It will end in the tears of deflation when they try to withdraw the liquidity, or end just as the Weimar republic and Argentina of the late 1980's did, with wheelbarrows full of money.
Hank Paulson's guarantee, big time politics
At the G8 finance meetings in Asia, US treasury secretary made an eye-catching statement. He said the "US housing market would not be a problem to the world economy". Really? What does he know that we don't? Has the decision been made to "Paper it over" with a little balance sheet repair courtesy of the US treasury and the Federal Reserve? Bet on it!!! They have already hatched a plan to limit the damage to the poor fools that took the ARM's to buy inflated homes. The banking system and mortgage lenders will quietly have these failing mortgages taken off the books so as not to impair the lending ability of the institution to new qualified borrowers. Politicians are powerful people and who better than the Ex chairman of Goldman Sachs to devise a fix. The stock market is booming but every other market is pricing in an economic slowdown. Is the plunge protection team working overtime to paint the tape? Headlines talking about new stock market highs sooth the souls of citizens, as do lower gas prices. Are the Saudis overproducing to provide a helping hand to G. W.? Absolutely.
It sure would appear that Paulson is working his magic with his pals over at Goldman Sachs as the excerpt from the most recent FREE MARKET GOLD REPORT details. James Turk reports;
FIDDLING AT THE PUMP My contempt for the federal government seems to be growing daily. Here is their latest disgusting caper.
The King Report published by M. Ramsey Ling Securities, Inc. on September 22 made a very interesting observation about a report in the previous day's issue of The Wall Street Journal, entitled "Some Investors Lose Their Zest For Commodities." Here's what the King Report says:
"The article notes that over the past few months, commodity funds have been liquidating commodity holding. But here's the stunner: ‘...consider the Goldman Sachs commodity index, one of the most popular vehicles for betting on raw materials. In July, Gold man Sachs tweaked the index's content by cutting its exposure to gasoline. Investors tracking the index had to adjust their portfolios accordingly - which sent gasoline futures prices tumbling'."
The King Report goes on to say: "Ergo unleaded gasoline prices collapsed in August and September", which I note is very interesting timing. Here's what one astute market analyst had to say about it"
"Here we have Goldman, qua keeper of the commodities index, manipulating markets simply by adjusting index components. It is noteworthy in several respects. First, we are used to the notion of them from running market sensitive information announced by third parties, but here a glorified hedge fund - albeit on dominating central banks and finance ministries worldwide - maintains market-moving indices itself. (Wonder how hard it would be to get any data on shorts put on in the gas futures by GS traders prior to the announcement of the "tweak".) Second, it lends credence to the theory that the current well-publicized commodities decline is just a well-timed, well-orchestrated headfake to benefit the incumbents in the run-up to the midterm elections - someone noted recently that Bush's ratings vary inversely with gas prices. Third, it challenges our creativity in demonstrating that there are more ways to print the tape than are dreamed of in our philosophy. Surely the burden of proof now rests with those who proclaim the existence of coincidences in today's "markets", which routinely act in defiance of all logic and experience. Finally, it makes you wonder what other tricks we'll see from Hank's boys in the weeks ahead. Lord help us".
Gasoline prices here in New Hampshire are down to $2.39 from over $3. So I wonder what other gimmicks ex-Goldman CEO and now Treasury Secretary Paulson has up his sleeve to keep gasoline prices low until Nov 8? There has been a bounce in President Bush's poll ratings, and the drop in gasoline prices has no doubt helped.
I have read that the Bush administration is pulling out all of the stops to avoid losing the House in the November elections. Apparently some of the administration insiders are worried that a Democratic controlled House will initiate impeachment proceedings. So it seems reasonable to be prepared for more surprised from Mr. Paulson.
The Goldman Sachs Commodity index is the premier "long only" index for pension funds and institutional investors and holds represent billions of dollars of commodity investments. This is but the tip of the iceberg political manipulation of markets. It is destroying the markets pricing abilities and integrity. The politicians have lost their minds and now believe themselves GODS. I DON"T THINK SO !!!
Easy Money Japanese style, fuzzy math
Remember back in July when I illustrated the tortured CPI (Consumer price index) showing pre Clinton era CPI in comparison to today's inflation statistics, I am reprinting that chart below for reference, this comes to us courtesy of John Williams at shadowstats.com.
The chart above shows how inflation in the United States is understated for a variety of reasons, all to mislead the public and allow government malfeasance, such as lowering interest rates for easy money creation, underpayment of government liabilities such as social security, Medicare, containing peoples inflation expectations, to name a few. I also stated this is a worldwide phenomena. Well here is an excerpt from Gary Dorsch recent newsletter at sirchartsalot.com that illustrates it in Japan;
Japan's Fuzzy Math
How should one react to Tokyo's fuzzy math, after government apparatchniks added 34 items to the Japanese consumer price index, whose prices on balance were falling, and removed 48 goods and services that were becoming more expensive? The fuzzy math produced a stunning two-thirds decline in Japan's core consumer inflation rate to 0.2% in July, from the 0.6% inflation rate reported in June, jolting Japanese interest rates.
Year-on-Year % chg
July June May April March
Core CPI Old Base
0.6% 0.6% 0.6% 0.5% 0.5%
Core CPI New Base
0.2% 0.2% 0.0% -0.1% 0.1%
Tokyo's new methodology for computing the core rate of consumer inflation, included revisions for all the 2006 data, and the difference is dramatic. In the month of May for instance, the new core CPI base showed zero inflation, compared with a 0.6% annualized rate under the previous rules.
In an age when governments of every political stripe distort data to promote their self-interest, it's hardly surprising that the new formula for computing inflation suits the interests of Japans LDP party. By the same token, it is entirely natural for official inflation data to be wildly at odds with reality, and is often regarded with cynicism and disbelief.
Thanks Gary, for these insights. Well this is but a pattern being duplicated throughout the world as we speak. It allows the fiat printing presses to run wild as governments steal your money while it is sitting in the bank, reduce their current and future obligations and provide easy money and credit into the foreseeable future. Japan has the highest debt to GDP ratio of any western government at 150% (for comparison this number for the US is in the 60% range, the US government does not recognize future promises in their current accounts or this figure would be 250%), as they have propped their economy up with government spending for over 15 years since the 1989 crash of the stock, debt and real estate market bubble from the go go 1980's. A boom there followed by a bust. Japans story is now writ large as a worldwide boom followed by a worldwide bust like Japan's. When we go into deflation the US and its other G8 serial fiat money printers (As outlined above) stare Japans fate in their futures as well. Its called a Kondratieff winter!!!
Despots on display
Anybody notice the NON-Aligned nations conference that just finished in Havana. It was a virtual Rogues gallery of dictators, socialists and enemies of the west and freedom in general. Kofi Annan was there to lend the good name of the United Nations to this little Confab. In Attendance was; President Ahmadinejah of Iran, Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, Evo Morales of Bolivia, Hafez Assad of Syria, virtually every OPEC government in the middle east was in attendance as well as many Muslim Asian countries. Many of them big producers of energy supplies. And over 140 other countries from around the world. And what did they agree upon? Consuming hatred of the United States and vows to the demise of the US devils!!! Combine this with the increasing enmity coming out of China and Putin's Russia and G. W. Bush and the Citizens United States have a big and growing problem. It is not going to be resolved by the United States forcing its will on others through military and financial intimidation. And it's not going away anytime soon...
Anti Americanism, The emperor has no clothes
I travel a lot internationally and it does not matter where I go, the anti American sentiment is big and growing. In Switzerland the banks and financiers hate us. Want nothing to do with Americans, as the US government here has no respect for national sovereignty. In any area. US regulators bully their way with threats and intimidation. In the UK a law was just passed to preserve regulatory authority of the London Stock exchange in the event the NASDAQ exchange acquires it. Americans cannot invest in many things just because no one wants to deal with US regulators overreaching intimidation techniques. 28 of the 29 largest IPO's have taken place off shore as Sarbanes Oxley chase capital formation from US shores. The NYSE takeover of the EURONEXT exchange pits US regulators ambition of regulatory takeover versus the government regulators of the European Union. You can expect a similar law to the UK out of Brussels shortly.
Before this is over US capital markets can expect a huge exodus, and it is already occurring as many investors will not touch US based financial institutions and Banks. As the US government misuses the financial system to enforce its will on others. At the same time the US is the biggest debtor in the world. The only thing holding the United States up is the reserve currency status of the dollar, and the kindness of our creditors as they hold too many dollars. Which the government will not let them spend, except on US debt, witness the UNOCAL and Dubai ports world debacles. Bush addressed the UN in September and it was a chilly reception, even from our European and Asian "allies". Iran can do its thing with impunity as the Chinese and Russia will reject the US hegemon. When will Washington understand that opinions and the National Sovereignty of others matter? Especially the opinions and National Sovereignty of our major trading partners from around the world!!! Hopefully before it is too late!!!! Don't bet on it, as our politicians do not respect their own citizens in the United States, as they destroy our futures to cater to the special interests powering their next election campaign. The US Government and politicians think they are our rulers, not our representatives. To the detriment of good government, and practical solutions to complex problems.
Stock and Gold Market Technical Analysis by: Garrett
"Sex is one of the most wholesome, beautiful and natural experiences that money can buy." -Steve Martin
September 29, 2006
Two things to cover initially - the above Steve Martin quote relates to the current market because we are getting a market reaction created by an over abundance of money and credit. The second thing to be aware of is the shark on the front page i.e. is this really a great time to be jumping back into the market? Let us not forget that the market works the opposite of other vehicles with respect to attraction. If Sears wants to attract you to its store, it will have a SALE. It will advertise lower prices or "specials". If the stock market wants to attract you to purchase stocks, it will raise prices. Think about that for a moment. In one case you are getting a value or a bargain; in the other you are paying a premium.
So, what's the significance of a new all time high in the Dow Jones Industrial Averages? There isn't one. The reason is that it is not a new all time high (even if the price is higher). The only real meaningful new high is one that is a new REAL high. When you look at the US Dollar chart below, you'll understand.
The US Dollar has lost 1/3 of its value over the past five years. US Dollars are our medium of exchange. The dollar's value has "real" meaning. We are, and have been, consistently losing global purchasing power. It is not a new real all time high in the Dow Industrials; your home hasn't "really" doubled in value, etc. Try to "get" this picture. This is an illusion and the financial news networks aren't telling you what is really going on. Can the market go up in the face of a lot of negative things going on? Well, of course it can - that's what it has been doing and that is exactly what it did leading into the top in 2000 and the top in 1987. The current period is a lot like the period leading into the 1987 top. You have a two term Republican president in the middle of his second term; you have an overdue 4-year cycle low; and you have a solar eclipse that occurred on September 22nd (as was the case in 1987 just before that crash). What is the significance of a solar eclipse? There may not be any significance, but many of the major historical collapse have tended to fall in the vicinity of solar eclipses (it certainly doesn't mean that has to be the case this time). My point is that rather than this being a time for irrational exuberance, it probably should be a time for rational evaluation.
There is an old market adage "Buy Rosh Hashanah, Sell Yom Kippur". It is self-explanatory and may be something to keep in mind. The market is also affected by interest rates and earnings or at least the perception of interest rates and earnings. Currently, the interest rate atmosphere is positive with rates not being raised and a strong rally in the bond market showing anticipation of lower rates. Earnings, in general, are not disappointing. Therefore, the groundwork is in place for the market to be positive and supportive. It's current price action bears this out. Let's look at some charts: The chart below is my long term indicator chart.
As long as the Red line is above the Yellow line, things are bullish. The vertical dotted white lines show when 4-year cycle lows are due. Since a 4-year cycle low is due, we need to be cautious. Let's look at the big picture on the monthly chart: There are two things that one really needs to be aware of on this chart: The first is that the market has broken out above the upper Red channel line. In my work, a valid breakout is evidenced by two bars where the closing price is in breakout territory. This means that the month of October will also have to be above the breakout line in order for the breakout to be valid. So, this is interesting, as the market has exhibited a good deal of recent strength in a seasonal time period where most market veterans would anticipate weakness. The second observation is that the market has been in a very well defined bull market since the October 2002 low. Simple logic would say that we are very due for at least a correction; however, I do not have a sell signal yet. In fact, there is nothing on a weekly or daily chart that suggests a sell signal is due other than extended prices and exuberance.
If we rally for another week, it will be a total of 12 weeks for this rally. Three months is a long time for a rally at this stage of the market. There were down weeks during that time, but never back-to-back down weeks. Therefore, the uptrend was intact throughout. September is usually the weakest month of the year. This September was strong and strong Septembers are almost always followed by a correction in October. That is what I would expect this year, but it doesn't have to happen right away. I think we may have one more rally higher - and, very likely, to a new high in the Dow Industrials. This could cause a short covering rally and even bring in new buyers which could rally this market higher than most might expect. There is only one Fibonacci price retracement in the way and it is a 76.4% retracement that comes in at about 1368 on the S&P 500. That, in my view, is a best-case scenario. Look at the daily chart below:
The daily S&P 500 chart shows a potentially completed pattern, so a correction could begin immediately. This market is extended - there is no question about that. A good argument can be made for a correction and one more thrust higher into late this week or early next week. I have a few trend lines and cycle lines coming together at that time. The point is that we are extended now and it is important to be very cautious. This is all about reward vs. risk - currently, they are about equal in my view which means that the reward potential does not justify the risk for a long side trade unless one has a very well defined discipline.
My favorite gold chart is the weekly chart because it provides such an effective look at the big picture for gold. One of the obvious points on this chart is that you can see the price trend that gold remained in for over three years from its low in 2001. This price action is defined by the thick brown channel lines. In December of 2005, gold broke out of this channel and embarked on a new "price vector" at an elevated angle. This new price angle is in the process of being defined. It should define the range in gold prices during this next period of ascent for gold. Over the next six months, gold ran to a high of $732. It is currently in the process of retracing that advance. Once this action is completed, we should have the new price vector for gold fairly well defined. The price advance from the breakout took almost six months and it is likely that the price retracement from that high will take a similar period of time. On the weekly chart, the advance took 23 weeks. We are now about to begin the 21st week following the recent high in gold prices.
It would appear that gold may have a few more weeks of decline before this pattern is complete. It would appear that we are getting close to a point where gold should be once again considered for accumulation. Gold has been on a weekly sell signal for the past two months. The support levels this coming week are 584, 564 and 548.
Closing Comments: There is a great deal more "information" available in the Information Age than there was in the Industrial Age. Communication is much faster and far more effective than at any other point in our history. This works to the benefit of those looking to support the market - at least during bull markets. We are at a time in our history where we have mortgaged our future. We are comfortable exchanging the equity in our homes to add to our debt so that we can continue to feed our spending addiction. It also seems to make sense to spend hundreds of billions on a war(s) that will have absolutely no financial benefit to us or have a prayer of ever being paid back. Note: In the old days there were "spoils of war" i.e. if you won the war, you just took what you wanted (at least that was a payback for the expense of war). In other words, the war might make sense on some level if we were going to take over Iraq and access its oil fields. Obviously, it would be wrong, but at least there would be some misguided logic that we could grasp. We don't even have that.
We have created debt, money and credit at the fastest pace in the history of our country. It is a prescription for disaster, but we move relentlessly along this path as if it was preordained - that, by the way, is the only answer that makes sense to me. Please note that I am saying this completely without respect to any political affiliation. In my view, our politicians have completely lost track of just who it is they are supposed to serve. They are supposed to serve us - however, it is all too apparent that the ONLY thing they appear to be able to do with any effectiveness whatsoever is to serve themselves. They don't have to worry about social security because they are on a separate system. They don't have to worry about retirement or medical care because they have made sure that they are totally and completely covered for life. Did they somehow forget who they were supposed to serve?
With these wonderful "leaders" of ours, we are in debt up to our ears; at war; less safe than we have ever been; our educational ranking has dropped from #1 to #27 or so (and is falling rapidly); etc. The list of negatives is so long it doesn't even make sense to attempt to make a list. The one ray of light in this mess is the stock market. Why? Because it is the single best predictor of the economy ever devised. The stock market leads the economy - and the stock market has been going up. Therefore, the economy should follow. That is the one ray of good news and maybe the market knows something we don't. Rates are no longer going up and the earnings picture for some industries is decent. The trick is to make sure this continues.
The ultimate thing to keep in mind as we work our way through this process is the chart above. If a picture is worth a thousand words, this picture has to be a masterpiece. Keep in mind that the stock market is always in the process of moving from one extreme to the other. While the market was extremely overvalued in 2000, there will be a time in the future when the market will be extremely undervalued. The chart above is saying the same thing - in its own way. Somewhere down the road the debt bubble will implode and when it does all the air will be let out of this balloon we have been blowing up for decades. Prices will go to levels we can't even imagine. Is this currently happening in the real estate market? Maybe, but it is a good bet that the Fed will create as much money as is needed to keep the bubble alive - at least for a while longer.
Historically, this is why people have purchased gold at such times. As stated earlier, gold may be getting very attractive again.
All the best,
NOTE: THIS E-MAIL REPRESENTS THE VIEWS OF THE AUTHOR AND IS INTENDED FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. THERE IS RISK OF LOSS IN FUTURES TRADING. PAST PERFORMANCE IS NOT INDICATIVE OF FUTURE RESULTS.
In conclusion, things are growing tense. Don't expect any global slowdown, the world is awash in money. And it is desperately seeking returns regardless of risk. Any regional problem will be papered over i.e. "The US Housing market". Or hedgefund losses, Amaranth losses were double what Long Term capital managements were and the markets did not even whimper. They just moved the positions onto a big banks balance sheet and "presto chango" the losses disappear onto the Federal Reserves balance sheet. It will happen in the housing market as well, the only people destroyed will be those individual fools who grabbed the brass ring of ever-rising home prices, caused by below market rates, to buy fiat money inflated real estate. The rich and powerful will pin the tail on those donkeys!!! LOL. While covering their own Asses with their printing presses. The rest of the world wants to cut the US down to size and they will before it is over, to the regret of its citizens for electing the Mandarins of Washington DC.
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