Bankers and speculation.

When the money (Gold) runs out…

Posted on Updated on

As governments have used their ammunition in fighting to retain power for their Fiat currencies, the price of Gold and the Exchange Traded Product (ETP) or Exchange Traded Fund as it is more commonly called for Gold – the GLD has fallen.

But there comes a time in every charlatan’s performance when those watching no longer believe in the power of the magician pulling the strings behind the scenes.

In this case the arm of power behind the throne – the Central Banks – have sold or leased much of their Gold to Bullion Banks, who have sold this gold on the markets as their futures contracts came to an end, and the buyers took delivery, rather than as might have happened previously – settled in cash – it is increasingly obvious that as the number of contracts increase and more and more gold heads east to China and India, and north to Russia, and to numerous other central banks worried about their gold held in U.S. vaults, and have begun to increase their holdings, and repatriate their gold from overseas vaults, that it couldn’t go on forever.

And then this piece caught my eye…

http://www.kitco.com/commentaries/2015-09-29/Not-Enough-Gold-To-Pay-All-Holders-Of-Gold-Obligations.html

So what will happen when the gold does really run out?

Initially, I suspect Bankers will settle for cash, but probably have to pay a premium to do so, as those who own the metals contracts extract their pound of flesh. This will probably be under the radar, at first, but it will eventually leak out, and as more and more people have to settle for cash, the premiums will rise. This will feed through into the published prices, as the disconnect between the paper price and the settle price increasingly becomes obvious.

According to figures I’ve seen there are between 100 and 200 contracted ounces, for every real ounce in existence. This is how the Bankers came to dominate the world and its economies. The left hand not letting the right hand know the truth or what it was upto.

Fractional Reserve Lending meant lending out upto 10times the amount held on deposit. Of course this assumes they hold ten per-cent in reserve. BUT in the last ten years, those same bankers have had as little as 3 per-cent and that means they were lending out in excess of 30x their reserves. And that is the reason for the boom, and the bust when we had our Bear Sterns and Lehman moments.

If the Bankers persist in this lending and futures contracts binge, then it will end in disaster for the banks (and us) but at that point, the price of gold – both official and unofficial, will explode to the upside.

Of course in the meantime, as Harry Dent has stated on several occasions, the price may fall in the meantime, as first deflation due to demographics, and his convergence waves take hold, but as has been mooted on Bloomberg today, perhaps QE4 is but a printing press away?

And if it happens, when all that money leaks into the economy?

Can you say Boom?

Click on the like buttons, or follow us on Facebook.

And if you have thoughts on the above? Let us know below.

Advertisements

Transition Vamp? Or “How the Crash will be won!”

Posted on Updated on

Earthrise-4

Imagine for a moment, you are sitting on the moon, watching the world as it moves silently across your moon-scape sky.

Down beneath you on Earth, the Japanese are building cars and electronic equipment, Chinese are building new blocks of flats for people who can’t afford them. Building Railroads to cities that are inhabited by ghosts; building roads that cars don’t yet need, buying up iron ore, steel mills, and factory machinery; building ever larger vessels to trade across oceans. Buying American Hotels, Tower blocks, and Bank buildings. And quietly accumulating Gold and Silver, like there is no tomorrow, and a nascent motor industry is taking root.

Americans in their laboratories, are busily inventing new bio-tech remedies to prevent and treat new diseases. Hi-tech entrepreneurs, are designing new software to create new mega-corporations, and software already written, but which we haven’t learned about yet, is being improved upon, and new uses for old energy sources (more of which later) is being developed.

Meanwhile, British businesses, funded by capital from around the world, are building class leading vehicles in Crewe, home of Rolls Royce, and Coventry home of Jaguar Land-Rover, is busy building world-class Jaguars, and Range Rovers as well as numerous other towns and cities too, with increasingly successful manufacturing, all funded from capital raised on world markets, by the financial wizards inhabiting the square mile, where property values there, have been rising in line with the wealth created the world over, but which for its own reasons, seems hell-bent on buying a little piece of this over-crowded country.

Germans are building VWs, Mercedes, Porsches and Audis… Italians their Ferraris, Fiats, Alfas, Lamborghinis and Maseratis, and the French, their Peugeots, Renaults and Citroens – to say nothing of the Russian, Czech, Chinese, Brazilian, Indian, Mexican, U.S. or any other vehicle manufacturer. In 2011, there were 77 million cars, light goods and SUVs, sold worldwide. 2012 saw sales of 81 million, and last year that reached 85 million. By 2018, the world is expected to reach 104 million. Most of that growth will come from China, South America, and South-East Asia.

The world is a-buzz, a hive of activity, as trade and commerce travels around the globe as the world turns, and the sun appears over the Earth’s eastern horizon, only to disappear some hours later, depending on where in the world the worker lives and their latitude.

But unless, you are mistaken, no truck, ship, train, plane, or rocket takes off to trade with another planet.

It is a closed commercial system. Value accumulated on one side of the planet comes from increasing the stock of goods and services, and from extracting value from others. It does not come from outside the planet. What affects one side of the planet, affects the others.

As one side of the planet accumulates, Dollars, Yen, Pounds, and Euros, and all manner of metals, both rare and widely available, precious and semi-precious, and quietly putting them into vaults, or in warehouses.
On that side they are also accumulating holdings in suppliers that give them control, or serious stakes in smaller mining and refining businesses.

On the other side of the world, Americans are accumulating debts and losing their wealth to their Bankers who hold their government in debt to the respective owners of this central Bank – The Fed – $17 Trillion and counting.

Who has the right idea? The world is transitioning. We are moving from the computer age, the PC age, to the information age, where “Big Data”, and “Cloud Storage” is being touted as the way that governments and corporations can grow their revenues.

And, as old industries are dying, new ones are just beginning to emerge and grow. Research and development is going on in labs in Bio-Tech, Energy, Rare-Earths and special metallic elements, and alloys – Beryllium and Thorium, and the 17 Light and Heavy Rare earths.

Where will it all take us?

We can make a guess…

End of the Banking Industry as we know it?

On November 30th, Switzerland goes to the polls. Not to elect a government, or President or any other official. No, the people of Switzerland, concerned at their Central Bank’s abuse of its monetary powers, are voting to return to a partial gold Standard, which would require the Central Bank to carry at least 20% of its reserves in Gold; would not be able to sell any, and would have to return to Swiss soil, any bullion held overseas.

Germany too recently asked to repatriate its Gold holdings at the Fed, all 674 tons of it. To-date, the Fed has been able to send back just 5 tons, and initially stated it would take 7 years, though at current rates it would take over 150.

And nobody really knows exactly how much of the 1,040 tons of Swiss gold is actually stored at the Fed.

And we can only guess how soon the Central Bank would start to accumulate, and at what rate if the vote goes against them (the earliest opinion poll gave the ‘Yes’ camp a small lead). But if or when they do, the dollar is toast, as physical bullion begins being bought, and the market cannot deliver.

When this happens, the premium (the physical price over the paper price) begins to rise. Back in 2011, the premium reached over $50, as India, and China, Russia and the other BRICS nations began their stealth abandonment of the dollar.

India has recanted somewhat on its deal with the devil, as the Indian public began buying Gold and Silver to protect themselves from what is to come, before they (the Indian government) slapped a 10% sales tax on Gold, and instigated legislation requiring that 20% of precious metals be re-exported in value-added form. The so-called 80:20 rule. But Indian manufacturers have been getting creative. Some industry insiders say that manufacturers are turning the gold bars into chains at a mere 1.5% premium, for export, and then re-buying it back as a bar.

Following the legislation, precious metals dealers harangued the government, and the people of India began buying silver with both hands. And a new trend emerged as young Indians began buying 18 carat gold, rather than the 24 carat of historical norms.

However, the Indian Commerce Ministry figures also showed gold imports trebled at $2.04 billion in August 2014, compared with the same period a year ago. In August last year, imports totalled $739 million after the RBI imposed the 80:20 rule.

According to the Gems and Jewellery Promotion Council’s provisional data, gold jewellery exports have doubled during April-August this fiscal year compared with the same period last year. Data also shows exports rising to $2.12 billion against $1.04 billion a year-ago.

The Commerce Ministry data showed gold and other precious metals jewellery rising nearly 25 per cent during April-July compared with a year-ago but Gold imports, on the other hand, were down nearly by half during the period. I’ll leave you to decide whose figures are most accurate… And in the run up to the Indian celebration of Diwali, gold imports soared five-fold over 2013. And are expected to run at 70-75tonnes per month for the rest of the year.

On the one hand, the trade is complaining that gold smuggling is affecting their business badly, but on the other… “When asked how they are managing to get gold, jewellers say that 70 per cent of their demand is met through smuggling,” said Satish Bansal, Managing Director of MD Overseas Ltd, at a gold convention in Pune recently.

China too has been quietly accumulating. And we know (or strongly suspect) from document FT900 (see previous article) that some of the Gold has been secretly coming from the Fed’s vaults at the rate of circa 200+tons a year.

During the last financial crisis, the Fed, added almost $3 trillion to its own balance sheet. But we also know from Lord James of Blackheath that he uncovered that the Fed, sent $15 Trillion in 3 tranches of $5 Trillion each, just weeks apart through the Royal Bank of Scotland, which were passed onto other MTN Banks in Europe. (MTN means Medium Term Note, and is the name given to Banks who handle these in terms of Government and Large Corporation Finance. Monies can be deposited at overnight rates as high as 2.5%)

He released the information live on air, in the chamber of the House of Lords, and those interested can still find the piece on YouTube.

But also via the Fed’s FX liquidity swap lines the Fed also bailed out foreign Central Banks, which in turn took the money and funded their own banks.

It turns out that is only half the story: we now know the Fed also acted in a secondary bail out capacity, providing over $350 billion in short term funding exclusively to 35 foreign banks, of which the biggest beneficiaries were UBS, Dexia and BNP.

Since the funding provided was in the form of ultra-short maturity commercial paper it was essentially equivalent to cash funding. In other words, between October 27, 2008 and August 6, 2009, the Fed spent $350 billion in taxpayer funds to save 35 foreign banks.

And here people are wondering if the Fed will ever allow stocks to drop: it is now more than obvious that with all banks leveraging the equity exposure to the point where a market decline would likely start a Lehman-type domino, there is no way that the Fed will allow stocks to drop ever…

Until such time as nature reasserts itself, we will have market gyrations. The Fed is manipulating the market, and the oscillations of the last two weeks as various commentators have mentioned is because of this, the alternative, is that the Fed is finally wiped out – one way or another.

The Fed in the 08 crisis, also bailed out Barclays and RBS, to the tune of $640 Billion to help these two banks to buy the assets of Lehman Brothers, presumably in the UK).

The $350billion in short-dated paper, was the equivalent of re-capitalizing these banks.

The 35 Banks bailed out were:

UBS (Union Bank of Switzerland)
Dexia SA
BNP Paribas (Banque Nationale de Paris)
Barclays PLC
Royal Bank of Scotland Group
Commerzbank AG
Danske Bank A/S
ING Groep NV
WestLB
Handelsbanken
Deutsche Post AG
Erste Group Bank AG
NordLB
Free State of Bavaria
KBC
HSH Nordbank AG
Unicredit
HSBC Holdings PLC
DZ Bank AG
Republic of Korea
Rabobank
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation
Banco Espirito de Santo SA
Bank of Nova Scotia
Mizuho Corporate Bank, Ltd.
Syngenta AG
Mitsui & Co Ltd
Bank of Montreal
Caixa Geral de Depósitos
Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group
Shinhan Financial Group Co Ltd
Mitsubishi Corp
Aegon NV
Royal Bank of Canada
Sumitomo Corp

And four days ago, 25 European Banks failed stress tests, forcing them to raise extra capital to reinforce their balance sheets.

When the inevitable happens, the solution to this might just be… to get a whole lot wealthier, and there are two companies I feel, could help in that regard.

One is a Corporation I’ve been researching from North Virginia… Lightbridge Corporation (US:LTBR), and is one of these companies hinted at earlier.

Lightbridge holds U.S. Patent number – 8,654,917 and this provides for a method to develop and use nuclear fuel-rods, that contain Thorium, in such a manner, that this enables existing Nuclear Reactors, including PWRs (Pressurised Water Reactors) which are commonly used in American Nuclear facilities to get better power output, while lowering costs, reducing the risk of meltdown, as the vessel operates at reduced temperature (1,000 degrees less) and the waste material is only one tenth as dangerous when the spent fuel is stored, allowing greater storage density thus saving capital costs going forward, and almost completely eliminating the production of enriched plutonium, thus limiting scope for the further proliferation of nuclear weapons.

The benefits on the face of it, will give energy producers scope to compete on favourable terms with other more unreliable energy sources, and even compete favourably with Liquid Natural Gas and Compressed Natural Gas.

And the number of new reactors proposed or being built, despite the political reticence since Fukushima in 2011, is rising rapidly, even in places like the middle-east – such as Syria, Egypt, Iran and Saudi-Arabia.

Lightbridge’s web-site has this to say about itself:

“Lightbridge is a US nuclear energy company based in McLean, Virginia with operations in Abu Dhabi, Moscow and London. The Company develops proprietary, proliferation resistant, next generation nuclear fuel technologies for current and future nuclear reactor systems. The Company also provides comprehensive advisory services for established and emerging nuclear programs based on a philosophy of transparency, non-proliferation, safety and operational excellence.

Lightbridge’s breakthrough fuel technology is establishing new global standards for safe and clean nuclear power and leading the way to a sustainable energy future. Lightbridge consultants provide integrated strategic advice and expertise across a range of disciplines including regulatory affairs, nuclear reactor procurement and deployment, reactor and fuel technology and international relations.

The Company leverages those broad and integrated capabilities by offering its services to commercial entities and governments with a need to establish or expand nuclear industry capabilities and infrastructure.

Lightbridge is well positioned to serve the growing market for next generation nuclear fuel. Global nuclear power generation which is projected to nearly double by 2030, due to expansion in Asia. Worldwide, there are 435 reactors are in operation today. Another 70 reactors are under construction, with 29 in China and six in India. An additional 473 reactors are on order, planned or proposed around the world. For the first time in more than 30 years, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 2012 approved construction and operating licenses for four U.S. reactors. License applications are pending for 27 reactors in 14 states. Nuclear power generation is less expensive per megawatt and more reliable with longer lasting plants, compared with wind and solar generation.”

And the UK., too recently announced the Hinckley ‘B’ power station would be built by French Nuclear Energy Giant – EdF.

Lightbridge also has a $52 million order backlog it’s plugging through right now… and orders keep on pouring in, for consultancy services.

Now any company where the senior management doesn’t have substantial shareholdings, concerns me, but thankfully the Company’s largest shareholder is the CEO, and co-founder – Seth Grae, currently holding 1,255,008 shares representing 8.33% of the total stock. Access to a large Thorium mineral reserve will be important too, and fortunately for Lightbridge, a new vein system has been discovered in Nevada.

Quite frankly, if their material is widely adopted – and why wouldn’t it? – then LTBR’s stock price can only go skyward. Given that they are currently less than $2, and with just 15 million shares in issue where the market capitalisation ends up is considerably higher.

Over the longer term, I suspect this will be at least 10x higher.

The other Corporation is a mining and refining company based in South Africa. The company owns a huge tract of land containing large platinum and palladium reserves (PGMs) on a 5,000-hectare site located south of the Merensky and UG2 reefs being mined by Anglo Platinum and Impala Platinum, two of the biggest players in the industry and is the largest undeveloped platinum project in the world…

In the past, mining these ores was not the problem, but refining them was, as these ores are Chromium rich, which frequently caused problems with the arc furnaces. The company bought the site and the technology in an exclusive licence agreement to use an alternative roasting and smelting process called ConRoast, which was developed originally by Mintek. Mintek, is South Africa’s national mineral research organisation, and reports to the Minister of Minerals and Energy.

Mintek, licenced the new technology to a small miner called Braemore Resources, who ran out of cash during the last financial crisis, and who merged with the company in question. Its prime development asset is the Tjate Platinum project, where it has a 63% interest, and which covers 5,140 hectares adjacent to Anglo Platinum’s Twickenham and Impala Platinum’s Marula operations.

According to independent estimates, the project’s exploration area could contain some 65 million ounces of platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold. At the moment the total is 20.4 million ounces in the inferred category, and 1.97 million ounces indicated, but there is clearly more to come. Tjate can already be described as the world’s largest undeveloped block of defined platinum ore.

Given the above projections for vehicles, and given that most of those vehicles will require catalytic converters, that use PGMs to reduce noxious gases from exhausts, the demand for platinum, and palladium are going to rise, and therefore, shortages are inevitable. China’s smog problems will only get worse, unless each oil-based energy source uses catlysts to remove toxic emissions from exhaust gases.

The company’s technological lead, and patented technology until 2018, should see a rise over the longer term.
And stocks of both of these precious metals are at lows…  Jubilee Platinum (JLP:AIM) the company in question which has fallen to interim lows, might just be the turnaround target of larger more cash-rich majors.

My rating for both corporations is a medium to longer term – BUY.

W.

================================END===================================

Note:
No shares are currently held by anyone connected with this story, and will not be for a minimum of 72 hours from the posting of this story. The story is meant purely for educational purposes, and any rating is for personal use. The reader is strongly advised to seek professional guidance as to any share purchases. Share prices can go down as well as up, and you may lose considerable sums by choosing to invest in them. The author accepts no liability for actions taken by, or on behalf of readers.

Money for nothing, and their clicks for FREE.

Posted on Updated on

Stagnation, Inflation, Deflation, Dis-Inflation – and more – Hyper-inflation?

Back in 2010, in October, William H. Bonner of Agora Financial, a Baltimore based Financial Publishing house and regular commentator on the Financial Markets, released the following piece. Since then, the markets have boomed in some areas, and bust in others. But the real value of many of life’s essentials: Food, Clothing, Shelter and the basic necessities of life, and many of life’s “nice to haves” – Copper, Tin, Zinc, Nickel, Iron, Gold, Silver and of course Oil and Gas, have all experienced significant price changes. But are the prices accurate? Do they reflect the effort and cost of capital needed to extract them, or of their true value, if we run out of them? We may live to find out…

That’s the trouble when you start printing money for nothing, the people who get it first make the most profit, and the further it spreads out from the central bank, the less profit it appears to make. But the good Central Bankers, will do everything they think they can to make things better. The only question is: “For whom?”
Read on to find out.

===========================
Plaza II Accord

Bill Bonner – Friday, October 15, 2010

Keynes was right about one thing…

Peace talks broke down last weekend. Observers had expected the IMF meeting on the weekend to result in the equivalent of the Peace of Amiens or the Surrender at Appomattox. But Treasury secretaries and central bankers went home, unpacked their bags, and resumed their premeditated mischief.

The dollar went down. Why would anyone pay 100 cents for an old, worn out greenback when the Fed promises to create trillions more of them, brand spanking new? Europe and Japan resumed firing with their new QE guns. Asian nations sent out snipers to intervene in the currency markets directly. And China and the US resorted to “trench warfare,” reported The Financial Times, neither apparently ready to give up an inch; that is, neither was prepared to allow its currency to buy more today than it did yesterday. In America, China has become an election-year bogeyman. The electorate seems convinced that any nation that stockpiles $2 trillion worth of America’s I.O.U. greenbacks must be up to no good.

So, the war goes on. But it is an ersatz war. All the combatants really want the same thing – to debauch their currencies at the expense of savers and creditors. Sooner or later, they’ll conspire to get the job done. A full 93% of US financial professionals believe the Federal Reserve Bank is on the case. It is expected to launch major debauch in November. Investors have run up almost all asset classes in anticipation. The Dow passed 11,000 on Friday. Soft and hard commodities hit new highs. And if, on a given day, gold does not set a new record, it is probably because the markets are closed.

What a remarkable period in financial history! We can hardly believe our luck. Absurd things are happening. John Maynard Keynes was wrong about practically everything. But he was right about this:

There is no subtler, surer means of overturning society than to debauch the currency. The process engages all the hidden forces of economic law on the side of destruction and does it in a way that not one man in a million is able to diagnose.

And we get to see it live. And probably dead. The US dollar fell under the control of the debauchers, partially, in 1913…when America’s central bank was formed…then fully, in 1971, when gold backing for the dollar was completely eliminated. In the 100 years before the Fed was formed, the dollar lost not a penny of its value. In the almost 100 years since, it has lost almost all of them. If the greenback were to lose another 5% of its 1914 value, there would be nothing left at all.

Such slow larceny bothered no one. As long as the dollar slid gradually, and peacefully towards worthlessness it seemed almost natural, even healthy. Central bankers could mix with polite company and hold their heads up. None was arrested, as far as we know. None was so tormented by his crime that he had to be restrained or sedated. But now central banks are committing their felonies in broad daylight. Economists argue for more. But investors are confused and worried. Today, they buy gold. Tomorrow they may buy shotguns.

But what else can the managers do? After increasing for 61 years, the volume of credit in the US – and hence, the volume of sales – is no longer expanding. This leaves householders with debt to pay down and exporters with no alternative but to fight for market share. What to do about it? Lower the value of the currency! But in a correction, the natural thing is for prices to go down with a decline in demand. So, money tends to become more upright just when the managers would most like to see it slouch.

The poor central bankers. They are victims of their own delusions of competence. They have never actually managed anything successfully. When the economy is expanding, they exacerbate the boom. When it is contracting, they slow down the correction. And now, they fight a currency war not of their own choosing, but of their own making. The war is their response to the correction, which results from the bubble, which was caused largely by the managers themselves.

And now they’re looking for a hotel where they can do it again. It was at the Plaza Hotel in New York in 1985 that they managed their Treaty of Versailles. It ended the currency war of the early ’80s…and prepared the way for an even bigger war later on. Back then, Japan was the go-go economy. Like China today, Japan was the world’s leading exporter. It wanted to keep the yen low. The US meanwhile, was losing market share. James Baker and the other US managers threatened sanctions. Japan gave in. By early the following year, the yen was 40% higher against the dollar and Japan’s GDP growth rate had been cut in half. But the managers fixed that problem as they fix them all. In Japan, they cut rates 4 times in 1986, creating a flood of hot money. Four years later, Japan was the envy of the entire world. In January of 1990, the Nikkei Dow hit a new record – 4 times higher than it was when the Plaza Accords were signed. Then, the bubble popped. You don’t need to be reminded of what happened next. The Nikkei crashed. Real estate crashed. Everything crashed. The economy went into a 20-year tailspin, failing to create a single new job in two decades. Neither stocks, nor real estate, nor the economy ever recovered.

No one wants to follow the Japanese down that road. Ben Bernanke manages the dollar, desperately trying to avoid it. And Premier Wen of China said it would be “a disaster for the world” if Western nations tried to force China in that direction. He’s right. But he needn’t worry about it. Disaster is coming anyway. The managers will make sure of it.

Regards,

Bill Bonner,
for The Daily Reckoning
============================

And once more, the Banks are mired in controversy. Late on 12th June 2014, we heard that the UK., Chancellor of the Exchequer, will outline new laws to regulate the largely unregulated Foreign Exchange markets (For-Ex).
Every day, over $4 TRILLION changes hands globally in these markets, but several Big Banks – those closest to the Central Bankers, have been allegedly manipulating these markets for their own ends.
The Chancellor will make manipulating these markets a criminal offence.

I welcome the attempt to rein in the worst effects of the bankers actions, but it is a brave policeman, or Financial Conduct Authority, who will apply the new legislation, as Bankers have historically threatened governments of all political persuasions with dire effects if they apply regulations too rigidly.

If you don’t believe me, after the scandals that have come to light in the last five years, including LIBOR, Silver, Gold and other events such as the London Whale, then perhaps you need to read my free E-book, all 633 pages of it – “The Coming Battle”, which documents the worst excesses of these “Wizards of Oz” who pull the political strings from behind the curtain. These bankers who threaten governments, who manipulate stock-markets, Foreign exchange markets, Precious metals markets, and use their financial muscle, to wreak havoc when they fail to get the outcomes they feel they deserve.

But who can take them on?

The latest news from Iraq is ISIS appears to have taken control of parts of Western and Northern Iraq, and Eastern Syria.

Their goal it appears, is to create an Islamic Fundamentalist State. Part of me feels they deserve everything they get. BUT I should point out to all, and any who think that we ought to intervene again in the Middle-East, that our last attempts probably created this hotch-potch of anti-western sentiment – rapidly becoming a “Holy War”.

Besides just by ignoring the problem, these radicals will burn themselves out. Apart from the oil-fields in Northern Iraq, what do they have to sell? Oranges? Lemons? Mangoes? I am at a loss to call to memory anything that is exported from the middle-east apart from oil and/or gas. And therein lies the crux of their problem.

A modern economy has to pay for things that others have to sweat to build. German Engineering comes at great expense, and organisational and engineering expertise. British know-how in Financial Markets comes from a few centuries of having travelled the globe, and of having access to a large capital base, and expertise in how to make use of that. (And maybe that’s another topic of discussion for the future). Jamaica has the right climate for sugar cane, and so uses it to make Jamaican Rum. Mexico, has Silver mines, America has its software and computer hardware. Kenya has its tea and coffee plantations, and Japan, its electronics businesses. Each taking advantage of that country’s strengths.

Adam Smith the father of all economists, called it “comparative advantage”. What he meant was that each country should learn to make the best of its natural resources, and use its natural advantages to their fullest.

But as the world becomes more intertwined, the fruits and bounty of this planet will have to be paid for with real money, not money you can just print up at will. Money (Gold and Silver) has to be dug from the earth, smelted, refined into bars and coins, and thus the labour stored up in them – the knowledge, skills, ore, blood, sweat and tears, becomes a tradeable and valuable commodity. Pieces of paper with pretty pictures on, printed in their billions will not.

Education, research, and expertise gained over long periods gives countries an advantage in particular spheres. And asking the Lord Almighty, in whatever guise you see him, will not cut it anymore.

The Lord helps those who help themselves is a phrase I was brought up on. It is time for the middle-east to wake from its 1500 year slumber, and broaden its economic base through acceptance of certain verifiable truths.

Men are the captains of their own destiny not an all seeing prophet, or god from on-high. Such thinking should be reserved for the home and hearth.

Science, and the application of science – truths in physics, if you will, will improve the lot of the many. A country of fundamentalists, however ruled, who do not realise that they can only pay their way in the world by exchanging things of value, will, if ignored, like grapes of wrath, wither on the vine.

Forcing people to live a particular theocratic life in poverty, will mean they will take the first opportunity to leave. And the oil and gas will stay in the ground if others refuse to buy from these tyrants.

In the meantime, those oil and gas producers outside the middle-east, will be reaping the rewards as the oil price rises once more. Two small producers, I have had a smallholding with for over a year, for just such reasons are: Lenigas and Oil (AIM:LGO) and Sound Oil (AIM:SOU). Both have had good news of late and I believe are multi-baggers from here.

LGO operates in Spain and Trinidad and Tobago, and SOU operates in Italy.
As the world price of oil and gas rises due to the increasing political risks, these small businesses will find their product adds increasing amounts to the bottom line, and thus their prospects will rise alongside it.

Eventually, the public will wake up to the fact that the notes and coins in their wallets, and their bank accounts don’t represent real wealth, and demand alternatives to the currency dictated by governments. Alternatives that have stood the test of time, such as Gold and Silver, and newer alternatives such as the crypto-currencies, I’ve mentioned many times will stand out as value and wealth preservers – Bitcoin et-al, and Gold and Silver, will achieve their true place in the realm of matters economic just as they have always done when governments do stupid things like debauch the currency.

If you liked this post, please like it or even just copy and paste saying where from.

W.

99 Years and counting down…

Posted on

So, tomorrow is a VERY special birthday. The Fed set up by a cartel of banking families, in total secrecy is 100 years old tomorrow.

The Fed grew out of a crisis that occurred in 1908. The whole story would take far too long to describe fully here, but suffice to say, the financial crisis we’ve just experienced, is widely accepted to have been as a direct result of excessive lending on property which in a market that was growing due largely due to demographics, but also because spurts in population growth occur at regular intervals.

If you have access to that data, you can time your entry to the market with precision, or even take advantage of the panic when it occurs.

Of course when you are a Bank, and you have personal data on birth-dates on hundreds of millions of accounts, that data can prove invaluable. You can agree to lend, driving up house prices, then when they begin to rise, you can relax your lending, giving 4, 6, 8 or 10 times current incomes, driving prices up even more. Then as house price inflation rears its head (as it inevitably must) you can raise interest rates driving hundreds of thousands into negative equity, as property prices become depressed.  Of course only a conspiracy theorist, would think they would do that… Wouldn’t they?

The 1908 Banking Crisis

The crisis of 2008 had several outcomes. Property prices would crash, many would lose their jobs, and politicians would agree to more spending. All (they say) to overcome the further progression into recession – depression even. 

Exactly a hundred years ago, a similar crisis occurred. Are we to believe we have learned nothing? Are we to believe that our leaders have not read anything on Political economy, have not read any Economic History, have no advisers who have? Or are they only concerned with their own political futures?

To see, we need to go back a hundred years, perhaps even a little further. to find the cause of the crisis.

The turn of the century ushered in the era of the Oil revolution. A second wave of the industrial revolution, that was originally brought about by the use of coal in steam engines. OIl would enable greater productivity, and usher in the era of the motor-car. Yes, oil had been found before, and was in widespread use since 1859, oil had been used in oil lamps for lighting, given away by Standard Oil – the baby of the Rockefellers.

But in 1901, a new well in Texas spudded. On January 10th, 1901, Spindletop oil well in Texas gushed forth, reaching peak production of over 100,000 barrels of oil per day. It took over a week to bring it under control. Over the next few years over a hundred oil companies would be formed, and thousands of new wells drilled. The wealth created spread out into the wider economy, and the Bankers who had loaned these new corporations the capital made hundreds of millions in new profits. Then, just as now, people speculated on these corporations, and bankers pay became the stuff of legend.

F. Scott Fitzgerald, who would later write the great novel – “The Great Gatsby” would bring this world to a wider audience, but in 1906, a crack in the world – along the San Andreas fault would usher in a period of tumult. 

An earthquake at just after 5:10 am on April 18th, measured by various estimates as between 7.7 and 8.25 on the Richter scale shook San-Francisco and the state. The Newspapers all wrote a collective piece the following day headlined: “The City that was”, as almost 300,000 of the 400,000 inhabitants were left homeless. Barely a building was left untouched.

The epicenter of the quake was reportedly two miles off-shore, but it radiated up to almost 300 miles away, as its effects were felt as far north as Oregon, and as far east as Nevada. The loss of output from San-Francisco, and the disbursements laid out by insurance companies, who had to collect on their own insurance through the re-insurance markets led ultimately to a shortage of capital which helped precipitate the shortage of funds in the markets for speculative purposes.

And that caused the crisis. but its what happened next that matters.

To be continued…