US authorities have recently called for comment on a rule change that may impact the gold market.
The US Treasury, Federal Reserve and the FDIC have jointly sought comment on changing some capital adequacy rules for when an institution holds gold in its own vaults or in another’s vaults.
According to the draft documents released, when gold is currently held as an asset, it is risk weighted at 15% – that is, a 15% haircut is taken on its current value for capital adequacy calculations. (See page 86 of the attached Federal Reserve document.)
However, in this same document, they are proposing that there be no (zero) discount.
That would then put gold on the same basis as cash.
217.131 Mechanics for Calculating Total Wholesale and Retail Risk-Weighted Assets.This seems an adventurous move. Over the past five years, the US$ value of gold has moved more than +/-50% from its average over that time, and is currently sitting -20% below its high in that same period. In cash terms, there certainly has been market price risk.
(i) A bank holding company or savings and loan holding company may assign a riskweighted asset amount of zero to cash owned and held in all offices of subsidiary depository institutions or in transit; and for gold bullion held in a subsidiary depository institution’s own vaults, or held in another depository institution’s vaults on an allocated basis, to the extent the gold bullion assets are offset by gold bullion liabilities.
Read More @ StratRisks.com
Waiting on the sidelines still, despite agreements forged at the EU summit , are Austrian and Swiss banking clients, who have moved away from stocks and bonds, etc. in favor of cash-heavy positions, most likely in anticipation of either stock selloffs or, even, a collapse of the Euro altogether. According to the LGT group, Swiss banking clients have moved almost a third of their portfolio into cash, and one in five believe the euro will collapse. The Austrian banking company found that wealthy Swiss and Austrian private-banking clients remain averse to risk in the face of infation, sovereign debt defaults and a failing financial system.
In Switzerland, 58 percent of private banking clients do not believe the financial system is unsustainable. Forty-four percent are worried about inflation. 22 percent believe the euro zone will collapse – the same as in Austria. Just 15 percent of Swiss and 16 percent of Austrians say the lessons have been learned from the euro crisis. The report also found that clients are reassessing diversification strategies in favor of gold, cash and home markets. The number of clients out to make more gains than the broader market has diminished.
“Private banking clients are still being influenced in their behavior by the turmoil in the financial markets and it appears increasingly likely that this will remain the case for this generation of clients for a long time yet,” according to the report.
Read More @ Silver Vigilante
In early December 2009, Haim Bodek finally solved the riddle of the stock-trading problem that was killing Trading Machines, the high-frequency firm he’d help launch in 2007. The former Goldman Sachs and UBS trader was attending a party in New York City sponsored by a computer-driven trading venue. He’d been complaining for months to the venue about all the bad trades—the runaway prices, the fees—that were bleeding his firm dry. But he’d gotten little help.
Brad DeLong makes an odd claim:
So the big lesson is simple: trust those who work in the tradition of Walter Bagehot, Hyman Minsky, and Charles Kindleberger. That means trusting economists like Paul Krugman, Paul Romer, Gary Gorton, Carmen Reinhart, Ken Rogoff, Raghuram Rajan, Larry Summers, Barry Eichengreen, Olivier Blanchard, and their peers. Just as they got the recent past right, so they are the ones most likely to get the distribution of possible futures right.Larry Summers? If we’re going to base our economic policy on trusting in Larry Summers, should we not reappoint Greenspan as Fed Chairman? Or — better yet — appoint Charles Ponzi as head of the SEC? Or a fox to guard the henhouse? Or a tax cheat as Treasury Secretary? Or a war criminal as a peace ambassador? (Yes — reality is more surreal than anything I could imagine).
Names like that, on a New Zealand company, have no official meaning, but they might appeal to any Americans out there whose due diligence on an overseas bank stops at checking whether the bank has a vaguely familiar-looking name. That level of nonchalance identifies ideal scam victims. The company name functions as a filter: only dopes sign up.
Should the Reserve Bank be warning judiciously about these foreign-accented phrases, and others, too, no doubt; whether or not the words are in their Reserve Bank of New Zealand Act 1989?
Let’s see whether I can form any strong but purely personal opinions about that, which I will express in capital letters, bold.
Read More and LISTEN Now @ NakedCapitalism.com
Initially, all of the big banks have engaged in Mafia-style “bid-rigging” of municipal bonds, to bilk money from every city in the nation … to the collective tune of tens billions of dollars.
And Barclays and other large banks – including Citigroup, HSBC, J.P. Morgan Chase, Lloyds, Bank of America, UBS, Royal Bank of Scotland – manipulated the world’s primary interest rate (Libor) which virtually every adjustable-rate investment globally is pegged to.
And see this. That means they manipulated a good chunk of the world economy.
Other recent stories also show criminal fraud as well. For example, the big banks have been cheating homeowners … especially veterans.
And as Max Keiser explains here, banking giants Mellon and State Street shaved money off of virtually every pension transaction they handled over the course of decades, stealing collectively billions of dollars from pensions worldwide.
Read More @ WashingtonsBlog.com
Despite voting to hold Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt of Congress, there’s little House Republicans can do in the short term to compel him to turn over documents — unless it wanted to revisit a long-dormant power and arrest him.
The thought is shocking, and conjures up a Hollywood-ready standoff scene between House police and the FBI agents who protect the attorney general. It’s a dramatic and unlikely possibility not least because Congress doesn’t even have a jail any longer. But in theory it could happen.
Republicans say it’s not even under consideration, with House Speaker John A. Boehner’s spokesman flatly ruling it out.
But the process, known as inherent contempt, is well-established by precedent, has been confirmed by multiple Supreme Court rulings, and is available to any Congress willing to force such a confrontation.
“The House is scared to death to use the inherent contempt power,” said Mort Rosenberg, a fellow at the Constitution Project and author of “When Congress Comes Calling.” “They’re scared to death because the courts have said … the way the contempt power is used is unseemly. It’s not that it’s unconstitutional, because it’s been upheld by four Supreme Court decisions, but unseemly to have somebody go arrest the attorney general.”
Read More @ WashingtonTimes.com
‘Armageddon’ to Happen Despite EU Deal … Jim Rogers, Chairman of Rogers Holdings says the latest euro zone deal does nothing to help solve the region’s biggest problem, which is its high debt levels. Even as markets cheered the agreement by European leaders to allow the direct use of the bloc’s bailout funds to recapitalize struggling banks, well-known investor Jim Rogers told CNBC the move does nothing to help solve the region’s biggest problem, which is its high debt levels. – YahooFinance
Dominant Social Theme: Everything will be okay with this deal in place.
Free-Market Analysis: Jim Rogers’s analysis of the “deal” that has been reached by top EU “policymakers” (excerpted above) is probably accurate. Apparently, EU leaders will now be able to lend to banks without further degrading their various countries’ credit status.
But why filling up bank coffers with paper money is seen as a triumph of some sort is difficult to ascertain, as Rogers astutely notes. The real problem faced by the EU is that member states spend too much money and that they cannot devalue their currencies to pay off debts and “spread the pain.” Here’s more from the article:
Read More @ TheDailyBell.com
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The deal, sealed by leaders in the early hours of Friday morning in Brussels, will allow stricken banks to directly access the region’s rescue fund. The hope is it will enable Ireland to return to international bond markets.
Eamon Gilmore, Ireland’s deputy prime minister, said: “This is a massive breakthrough for Ireland and it changes the game in terms of our bank debt. This deal will allow the country to recover much faster.”
Under previous rules, rescue funds first had to be handed to governments before being passed on to troubled banks. That way countries like Spain ,which has been forced to intervene to help its banks, had to take on additional debt, pushing up borrowing costs.
Dublin has lobbied hard for the changes, along with Spain and Italy. Germany had previously been resistant to the idea.
Read More @ Telegraph.co.uk
Who else but Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders would have the courage to blow the whistle on the $4 trillion Fed scam involving near zero-interest Federal Reserve loans and other financial assistance that went to banks and businesses of at least 18 current and former Federal Reserve regional bank directors in the aftermath of the 2008 financial collapse, all documented in the Government Accountability Office records?
It was on the eve of Senate testimony by JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, on June 13, that Sanders released the detailed findings on Dimon and other Fed board members whose banks and businesses benefited from Fed actions. The GAO data also appeared at ReadersSupporedNews.org (RSN).
RSN reports, “A Sanders’ provision in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act required the Government Accountability Office to investigate potential conflicts of interest. The Oct. 19, 2011 report by the non-partisan investigative arm of Congress laid out the findings, but did not name names. Sanders today released the names.
Read More @ IntrepidReport.com
by Conal Urquhart, The Guardian:
Egypt‘s first democratically elected president promised to build a “new Egypt” as he was formally sworn in on Saturday.
Mohamed Morsi, the candidate for the Muslim Brotherhood, made his vows in front of the constitutional court rather than parliament, which has been partially dissolved by the army. He succeeds Hosni Mubarak, who was deposed more than a year ago as part of the Arab spring revolution.
Morsi is Egypt’s fifth head of state since the overthrow of the monarchy some 60 years ago.
“We aspire to a better tomorrow, a new Egypt and a second republic,” Morsi told the judges of the court during a solemn ceremony shown live on state television.
“Today, the Egyptian people laid the foundation of a new life of absolute freedom, a genuine democracy and stability,” said Morsi, a 60-year-old US-trained engineer.
Read More @ Guardian.co.uk
When most people think of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s education programs, they remember the gentle Mr. Rogers welcoming children to his home, or documentaries offering exciting encounters with whales and other exotic creatures.
These shows still exist. But CPB today produces lessons that glorify the Black Panthers and riots and protests of the 1960s, present rocker Patti Smith as a “patriot” for singing songs that condemn President George W. Bush, vilify Wal-Mart, and sanctify environmentalist Rachel Carson. Although their educational materials claim to be objective, the truth is that their unrelenting ideological slant that promotes the politics of protest and civil disobedience is aimed at re-educating children into becoming far-left activists.
But whenever there are attempts to cut federal funding to CPB, the corporation points to its “educational programming” as proof that the approximately $450 million it receives annually from federal taxpayers is being put to good use. Big Bird and other members of the cast of Sesame Street show up in Congress to tell members of the educational value of CPB-funded programs.
Read More @ NoisyRoom.net
Homo sapiens is a creature of habit. Most people have a strong desire to do what they can to create a life (and lifestyle) that is comfortable for them. Once this is done, we curl up and settle in. We then may add the occasional improvement to this situation, but, otherwise, we prefer then to be left alone to maintain what we have created.
It should not, therefore, be surprising if, when that comfy situation is threatened, we wish the threat would simply go away. Similarly, it is understandable if, when that threat begins to grow, we may simply pull the covers over our heads and pretend the threat either does not exist, or is far more benign than it appears.
Hence, it is a perennial condition of human nature to behave as described by Lamar Keene, when we discover that the government that we have been brought up to believe exists for our protection, has become no less than the greatest threat to our well-being.
Consider the following events, with regard to the USA:
- The Patriot Act (Passed in 2001 and extended in in 2011 with additional controls) expands law enforcement powers and removes civil liberties and constitutionally guaranteed rights. www.renewamerica.com/columns/webster/090419Read More @ LewRockwell.com
- The National Defense Authorization Act, passed on 31st December, 2011, allows the indefinite imprisonment by the military of any “suspects” (including American citizens on American soil) without allowing due process of law. www.en.wikipedia.org/nationaldefenseauthorisationact
- The MAP-21 Bill, which allows the Internal Revenue Service to suspend the passport rights of Americans, based on the premise that their tax obligations may be unfulfilled. www.losangeles.cbslocal.com/2012/IRSbill
- The National Defense Resources Preparedness order, created in March, 2012, allows the President to take over control of all food, water, labour and industry in the US, “to promote national defense.” www.naturalnews.com/035301/Obamaexecutiveorders
by Marshall Swing, Silver Doctors:
Commercials picked up 1,144 longs but covered a massive -3,799 shorts to end the week with 43.27% of all open interest, a mammoth change since last week, and now stand as a group at -60,055,000 ounces net short, almost 25,000,000 less net short ounces from the previous week.
Technically, this is one for the history books.
Very few weeks have ever seen these huge percentage point changes!
Last week, these same commercials had 45.65% of all open interest. That is almost a 2.5% change in just one week.
Large speculators picked up 595 longs but stocked up for Armageddon by purchasing 4,475 shorts for a net long position of 31,110,000 ounces, a 40% decrease in their net long position of almost 20,000,000 ounces from the prior week. Are these large specs intending to become the next silver short tandem of Jamie Dimon and Blythe Masters? Just do the comparison from last week’s COT report
Read More @ SilverDoctors.com