Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Is your gold really there?

It doesn't just seem to be GATA which nowadays is questioning whether the volume of gold held in ETFs and in official reserves is really there - or perhaps there is more than one title to what is actually in the world's gold vaults? Would a run on gold bullion thus create panic among the Bankers?

Banking has run for centuries with the banks themselves only keeping on hand a fraction of the money owed to depositors with the balances loaned out and not always immediately available, if indeed it is even there at all, so when there is a run - like that on Britain's Northern Rock last year - the bank concerned can find it tough to keep its head above water. Northern Rock, in the event, needed to be bailed out by the U.K. government. (more)

CME To Allow Gold As Margin Requirement Collateral

Is JPMorgan in urgent need of gold replenishment? If one reads between the lines of today's surprising announcement out of the CME, that the Chicago exchange will allow the use of gold as collateral for margin requirements (for up to $200 million), with the actual physical gold to be stored at JPM's bank in London, that is one possible explanation. From a Nasdaq press release: (more)

The “Dis-Savings” Glut

This morning the price of oil rose over $79. Gold is trading at $1,051…about one-tenth the price of the Dow.

The Dow fell 67 points on Friday. Investors began to wonder if the news coming from the banks was as good as the first reports indicated.

For example, the Bank of America reported losing a billion dollars on its consumer accounts. It is all very well for JPMorgan and Goldman to make money. They’re investment banks. And they’re making money thanks to the US government’s generous bailouts. They pay almost nothing for borrowed funds…in dollars, of course. And then they take the money and bet against the dollar. So far, those bets are doing pretty well.

Meanwhile, the Bank of America is a real bank. With real mom and pop customers. And the poor moms and the poor pops are going bust. They can’t pay their bills. Or, at least so many of them can’t pay their bills that it cost BoA $1 billion in loans write-offs. (more)

Gold at $2,000 Becomes Inflation-Adjusted Bullseye for ‘80 High

Gold’s rally to a record means prices are still 53 percent below the 1980 inflation-adjusted peak.

While gold rose 19 percent this year to $1,072 an ounce on Oct. 14, consumer prices almost tripled in the past three decades, eroding the metal’s value. Bullion hasn’t kept pace with the cost of bread, fuel or medical care. In 1980, gold hit a then-record $873 an ounce. In today’s dollars, that would be $2,287, according to the U.S. Labor Department’s inflation calculator.

Record government debt and interest rates close to zero percent are pushing gold higher for a ninth straight year, and options show investors expect the rally to continue. When prices reached all-time highs, the contract with the most open interest was the December call to buy the metal at $1,200. The contract to purchase at $1,500 an ounce was the third biggest. (more)

Armageddon in Alabama Proves Parable for Local U.S. Governments

In its 190-year history, Jefferson County, Alabama, has endured a cholera epidemic, a pounding in the Civil War, gunslingers, labor riots and terrorism by the Ku Klux Klan. Now this namesake of Thomas Jefferson, anchored by Birmingham, is staring at what one local politician calls financial “Armageddon.”

The spectacle -- a tax struck down, about 1,000 county employees furloughed, a politician indicted over $3 billion in sewer debt that may lead to the largest municipal bankruptcy in history -- has elbowed its way up the ladder of county lore.

“People want to kill somebody, but they don’t know who to shoot at,” says Russell Cunningham, past president of the Birmingham Regional Chamber of Commerce. (more)

Crude Oil - Picture Perfect Breakout

Every once and a while, there is a "Perfect Storm" formation of a breakout pattern across the various
time frames, as we showed in the previous article, Crude Oil - Major Breakout Potential, from the larger
Quarterly time frame down to the daily. The weekly chart, below, shows precisely how the rally through
the previous trading range triggered the up move, which has more to go.

Once crude bottomed, starting December 2008, it formed a broad trading range with 23 March as the high
and a very small range that caused price to retreat for the next five weeks. This chart is replete with so
many technical observations. The small weekly range just mentioned is typically a red flag. Buyers were
unable to keep control, and sellers were present to prevent price from extending higher. That is what set
the stage for the next five week decline. (more)

The Rich Have Stolen The Economy – Paul Craig Roberts

Bloomberg reports that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s closest aides earned millions of dollars a year working for Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and other Wall Street firms. Bloomberg reports that none of these aides faced Senate confirmation. Yet, they are overseeing the handout of hundreds of billions of dollars of taxpayer funds to their former employers.

The gifts of billions of dollars of taxpayers’ money provided the banks with an abundance of low cost capital that has boosted the banks’ profits, while the taxpayers who provided the capital are increasingly unemployed and homeless. (more)


The Dow is at 10,000, the Federal deficit is breaking records, unemployment is skyrocketing and money is cheap ~ so let's inflate the same debt bubble, continue Wall Street's derivative Ponzi scheme and let Main Street take the risk while Wall Street takes the profit: Allen L Roland (more)

Gerald Celente-Their is NO Economic Recovery-Its A COVERUP

Sticker shock at the supermarket: Food prices poised to rise

If there's any silver lining to a recession -- albeit a thin one -- it's that consumer prices typically go down. Make no mistake, deflation is a sign of a sick economy, but at least the net effect of cheaper prices for the basic necessities -- food, clothing and shelter -- helps folks get by when they are struggling to make ends meet.

But consumers should brace themselves for things to change, especially at the supermarket. As the global and U.S. economies emerge from the downturn, economists predict that there is going to be some sticker shock at the checkout line. Food prices, they say, are heading higher and when you combine that with an unemployment rate that's expected to linger near a three-decade high for at least another year, it's even more unwelcome news. (more)

Tilson: Housing Recovery a Costly Mirage

T2 Partners Whitney Tilson says the apparent housing recovery is only setting us up for worse things to come.

"The rebound has been stronger than we've anticipated," Tilson told Yahoo! News.

Yet he remains "confident this is the mother of all head fakes."

Tilson attributes the housing upturn of the past few months to low interest rates, first-time homebuyer tax credits, falling prices and seasonality — not improving market fundamentals.

He also believes there's still supply and demand issues that will hamper the recovery. (more)