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The bear markets of the last 50 years have had many different causes. Sometimes it's an external shock, often caused by politics—the 1973-74 correction set off by the rise of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries is an example, as is a 1990 bear market set off by Iraq's invasion of Kuwait. So, too, was the 1982 bear instigated by the Federal Reserve, which raised interest rates to punishing levels in a successful bid to crush inflation.
Ironically it is not completely divided between East and West, as a few European governments have been hedging their bets by repatriating their gold from offshore over the past few years.  But the race to accumulate gold has been primarily relegated to a few countries such as Russia, China, India, and Turkey, where combined they hold very powerful 'Trump Cards' as their economies, and along with the rest of the BRICS nations, make up 40% of the world's population. Read More
ANSWER: The entire world has NEVER been on the gold standard simultaneously. Asia was on a silver standard while the West was on a gold standard. Above is the first coin struck in Hong Kong in 1866 which was the Hong Kong Dollar. The West struck Trade Dollars during the 19th century to pay for goods from Asia and they were silver – never gold. Here is an example of both the British and American trade dollars used in payments particularly with China. The Spanish 8 reals Americans called Pillar Dollars and slicing this up into pieces like a pie gave rise to the term for a Piece of Eight – 2 bits, 4 bits, 8 bits a dollar.  Read More
This is money borrowed by (usually individual or “retail”) investors against their existing stocks to buy more stocks. Investors tend to do this when markets are rising and using leverage seems like an effortless way turbocharge their gains. But eventually the market turns down, leaving stock portfolios insufficient to cover related margin debt and generating “margin calls” in which brokers demand more money and/or start liquidating customer portfolios. This sends the market down sharply and indiscriminately, as fairly-valued babies are dumped along with overvalued bathwater. The result: a quick, brutal bear market. Read More
My business is to constantly look for new stocks by running stock screens, endlessly reading (blogs, research, magazines, newspapers), looking at the holdings of respected investors, talking to a large network of investment professionals, attending conferences, scouring through ideas published on value investor networks, and finally, scouring a large (and growing) watch list of companies to buy at a significant margin of safety.
Winning Tip: Your financial aid appeal letter must present a precise narrative with numerical support, and include  properly identified appropriate documentation (i.e. no credit card receipts) motivating the Financial Aid Office to lower your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). A lower EFC increases your family’s financial need which usually provides more financial assistance.
Written by seasoned Wall Street prognosticator Peter Schiff–author of the bestselling book Crash Proof: How to Profit from the Coming Economic Collapse–The Little Book of Bull Moves in Bear Markets reveals how you should protect your assets and invest your money when the American economy is experiencing perilous economic downturns and wealth building is happening elsewhere. Filled with insightful commentary, inventive metaphors, and prescriptive advice, this book shows you how to make money under adverse market conditions by using a conservative, nontraditional investment strategy.
Bear markets cost investors money because security prices generally fall across the board. But bear markets don't last forever, and they don't always give advance notice of their arrival. The investor must know when to buy and when to sell to maximize his or her profits. As a result, many investors attempt to "time the market," or gauge when a bear market has begun and when it is likely to end.
More than the Bear, we should be concerned with the risk concentration, with the top 10% of S&P 500 holding the bulk of the high end; the ratios have to be compared with the moderately long period of almost zero Fed rates, which has no parallel with the earlier periods used in the comparison. The uptick of interest rates must make an impression, it cannot sing the same song that the Bulls make.
Is the U.S. Government hiding a massive gold deposit in the Chocolate Mountains in California?  Well, according to a few top-notch conspiracy theorists, the U.S. Congress passed the Desert Wilderness Protection Act that has cordoned off this vast gold discovery from the public.  Unfortunately, we may never know if this mammoth gold deposit exists due to the clandestine nature of our government… or will we? Read More

James Grant, financial journalist and historian, is the founder and editor of Grant’s Interest Rate Observer, a twice-monthly journal of the investment markets. His new book, The Forgotten Depression, 1921: the Crash that Cured Itself, a history of America’s last governmentally unmedicated business-cycle downturn, won the 2015 Hayek Prize of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.
At first he was called Hotfoot Teddy, but he was later renamed Smokey, after the icon. New Mexico Department of Game and Fish Ranger Ray Bell heard about the cub and took him to Santa Fe, where he, his wife Ruth, and their children Don and Judy cared for the little bear with the help of local veterinarian Dr Edwin J. Smith.[29] The story was picked up by the national news services and Smokey became a celebrity. Many people wrote and called asking about the cub's recovery. The state game warden wrote to the chief of the Forest Service, offering to present the cub to the agency as long as the cub would be dedicated to a conservation and wildfire prevention publicity program. According to the New York Times obituary for Homer C. Pickens, then assistant director of the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, he kept the cub on his property for a while, as Pickens would be flying with the bear to D.C.[30][11] Soon after, Smokey was flown in a Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser airplane to the National Zoo in Washington, D.C.[11] A special room was prepared for him at the St. Louis zoo for an overnight fuel stop during the trip, and when he arrived at the National Zoo, several hundred spectators, including members of the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, photographers, and media, were there to welcome him.[31]

I bought this book in early 2011. Finally read it all. This book, while obviously aimed at a way of investing the author has specialized in, is well written. And anyone who lives on a fixed income has been long aware of the actual inflation rate. Of course, it is too late to do anything about incompetent or ineffectual IRA managers, but this is one of the few books I have read that made sense to me and offered even a little hope. I don't swallow it whole, because I am out of my depth, but it is obvious he knows a lot and apparently is successful at it.

The “Title I” designation as a foreign agent applied retroactively to any action taken by Mr. Page, and auto-generates an exponential list of other people he came in contact with.  Each of those people, groups or organizations could now have their communication reviewed, unmasked and analyzed by the DOJ/FBI with the same surveillance authority granted upon the target, Mr. Page.
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As longtime readers know, my work aims to 1) explain why the status quo -- the socio-economic-political system we inhabit -- is unsustainable, divisive, and doomed to collapse under its own weight and 2) sketch out an alternative Mode of Production/way of living that is sustainable, consumes far less resources while providing for the needs of the human populace -- not just for our material daily bread but for positive social roles, purpose, hope, meaning and opportunity, needs that are by and large ignored or marginalized in the current system. Read More
Central banks may tweak a few rates here and there, announce some tapering due to “economic growth”, or deflect attention to fiscal policy, but the entire financial and capital markets system rests on the strategies, co-dependencies and cheap money policies of central banks.  The bond markets will feel the heat of any tightening shift or fears of one, while the stock market will continue to rush ahead on the reality of cheap money supply until debt problems tug at the equity markets and take them down.Read More

It could be the arrival of a “sudden stop”. As I explain in Escape from the Central Bank Trap (BEP, 2017), a sudden stop happens when the extraordinary and excessive flow of cheap US dollars into emerging markets suddenly reverses and funds return to the U.S. looking for safer assets. The central bank “carry trade” of low interest rates and abundant liquidity was used to buy “growth” and “inflation-linked” assets in emerging markets. Read More
Quite simply, I think stock investors looked at the surfacing of real problems in their favorite FAANG stocks and, so, failed this time to find any fun in the frivolous fiction of government factoids. GDP reportage has been fake for years, and it is no less fake under Trump than under any other president. Fake is where you find it. You can find it as much on Fox as on CNN.  Read More
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Falling consumer confidence. This is generally one of the last dominoes to drop leading up to a bear market, partly because people are too stubborn to think any economic party could possibly end, and partly because they don’t have the data or the skill to analyze what’s going on behind the scenes. In other words — consumers are usually “the last ones to see it coming.”
Suppose you have the opportunity and the means to create a gold mine, and decide to undertake the challenge; you invest in the building and installations of the gold mine, and in all the related salaries to carry out the building of the mine, by paying for all expenses in gold; finally the gold mine is selling the gold it produces, in exchange for dollars. So now you have an abundant income in dollars, because your mine has been a successful venture. Hurray!

Will we someday look back on October 2018 as the turning point?  As the month began, people were generally feeling pretty good about things, and the U.S. stock market quickly set a new all-time high.  But from that point on, the wheels fell off for Wall Street.  We just witnessed the worst October for U.S. stocks since the financial crisis of 2008, and at this point more than 8 trillion dollars of global wealth has been completely wiped out.  But it isn’t just the stock market that is being shaken.  The horrific violence in Pittsburgh is just the latest in a string of events that have rattled the entire nation.  Sometimes I feel like I am literally watching the fabric of our society come apart right in front of my eyes.  It is almost as if there is a tangible presence of evil in the air, and it seems to be getting stronger over time.  Read More


This is just the beginning of a long trip that will take us to South America (where we get to see a financial crisis underway in Argentina)… Germany (where we hope to find out more about how Germans are preparing to tighten up at the European Central Bank)… and Bermuda, where we are scheduled to give a speech to a group of readers at the Legacy Investment Summit. Read More
Sometimes bear markets happen because the market decides economic fundamentals simply can't support stock prices. An example is the post-2000 U.S. bear market, when the Internet and telecom bubbles burst. And sometimes it's because economic facts change in ways that make investors change their mind: the 2007-2009 bear market, as the housing market tanked, is the best recent example.
Upon his death on November 9, 1976,[27] Smokey's remains were returned by the government to Capitan, New Mexico, and buried at what is now the Smokey Bear Historical Park,[33] operated by New Mexico State Forestry. This facility is now a wildfire and Smokey interpretive center. In the garden adjacent to the interpretive center is the bear's grave.[11][34] The plaque at his grave reads, "This is the resting place of the first living Smokey Bear ... the living symbol of wildfire prevention and wildlife conservation."[35]

“If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys” is the perfect way to describe the current market. Investors are all playing the same game and reinforcing the passive investing trend by constantly plowing more money into passively managed funds. The management fee of the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (NYSE: IVV) is just 0.04% which is extremely low and positive for investors. However the low fees, mindless investment strategies, and extremely high valuations will lead to a catastrophe when the same mindless buying reverts to panicked, mindless selling.
There’s no dispute that at least some, if not a great deal, of information in the anti-Trump “Steele dossier” was unverified or false. Former FBI director James Comey testified as much himself before a Senate committee in June 2017. Comey repeatedly referred to “salacious” and “unverified” material in the dossier, which turned out to be paid political opposition research against Donald Trump funded first by Republicans, then by the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign.
Forester is the founder and chief investment officer of the firm that bears his name. He finds nearly every S&P industry sector to be overvalued, and points out that the last two market crashes were sparked by the bottom falling out of a single sector. In the year 2000 it was technology, and in 2008 it was financials. In 2008, he radically reduced his exposure to bank stocks to 5 percent of his portfolio ahead of the crash at a time when financial stocks made up 20% of the S&P 500 index. His prescient move allowed his fund to become "the sole long-only mutual fund in the U.S. to gain in 2008," per Institutional Investor as quoted by Money.

Forester is the founder and chief investment officer of the firm that bears his name. He finds nearly every S&P industry sector to be overvalued, and points out that the last two market crashes were sparked by the bottom falling out of a single sector. In the year 2000 it was technology, and in 2008 it was financials. In 2008, he radically reduced his exposure to bank stocks to 5 percent of his portfolio ahead of the crash at a time when financial stocks made up 20% of the S&P 500 index. His prescient move allowed his fund to become "the sole long-only mutual fund in the U.S. to gain in 2008," per Institutional Investor as quoted by Money.

The rhetoric in the United States is heating up and we’re sounding anything but…well…united. It seems to most media pundits like we are too far down the path to Civil War 2.0 to turn back now. Activists are laying siege to government offices. Threats toward people who disagree are growing in ferocity. It’s ugly and getting uglier. It’s a powder keg that is about to erupt. (Here are some thoughts on what a full-fledged Civil War might look like.) Read More
Still, bear market rallies may seem as if they are a rising bull market, but until the market shows gains of 20% from the bear market low, it can't be considered a bull market. And, while bear markets occur during the contraction phase of the business cycle, bull markets typically happen when the business cycle is expanding (shown by several indicators, like lower inflation and increased employment, among others). 
The mirage that we are still in a strong bull market, and not on the brink of a bear one, has more to do with this year’s fast-rising earnings than a sharply falling stock market, which is typically what leads investors to run for safety. The classic definition of a bear market is when a stock market average such as the Dow or the S&P 500 has dropped 20 percent from its highs. But that’s probably not the best one. The more important factor to consider when gauging whether investors are feeling upbeat about stocks, and, by extension, the economy, is what they are willing to pay for the earnings that those companies generate.
Wall Street owns the country. That was the opening line of a fiery speech that populist leader Mary Ellen Lease delivered around 1890. Franklin Roosevelt said it again in a letter to Colonel House in 1933, and Sen. Dick Durbin was still saying it in 2009. “The banks—hard to believe in a time when we’re facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created—are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill,” Durbin said in an interview. “And they frankly own the place.”

I bought this book in early 2011. Finally read it all. This book, while obviously aimed at a way of investing the author has specialized in, is well written. And anyone who lives on a fixed income has been long aware of the actual inflation rate. Of course, it is too late to do anything about incompetent or ineffectual IRA managers, but this is one of the few books I have read that made sense to me and offered even a little hope. I don't swallow it whole, because I am out of my depth, but it is obvious he knows a lot and apparently is successful at it.
“We’re not overly worried about this being the early legs of a large-scale market correction in conjunction with a recession,” Joe Mallen, chief investment officer at Helios Quantitative Research, said Wednesday. “I don’t see anything so dire from an economic data perspective that will create a 20% plus drawdown. I think this is very technical in nature.”
Same thing with the hiring of Bolton, a bellicose fire-brand who never met a war he did not want to enjoin, even though (or because) he himself never served in combat. He replaces a combat veteran, McMaster, who was expected to restrain Trump. Will Trump, who also never served in combat, might just want to start a quick little war some place to shore up his low approval ratings? This, too, worries Wall Street, which likes military preparedness a lot more than the uncertainties of actual war.
Phew. Ok. So everything above seems completely ridiculous and indicates basically everyone involved – with the exception of Trump, Nunes, and maybe Sessions – are completely and utterly stupid! If this was a Clancy novel, it would at least have a plausible conspiracy! This one is just dumb. Hillary and DNC funded Steele to collude with Russia to MAKE STUFF UP about POTUS Trump and uses a corrupt and clearly bias FBI and DOJ to facilitate the whole thing. You cannot ask for a more stupid plot to this story! It is just bad!

I’ll admit I was somewhat skeptical when you claimed it was the “best conference,” but after last year, I couldn’t praise the SIC enough to my colleagues. (I think they actually got tired of me talking about it.) As a principle, I try NOT to attend the same events but rather experience new and different forums. However, I couldn’t resist returning for the SIC and have once again talked the ears off my fellow traders on the desk.
Between tax legislation and cryptocurrencies, there’s been little interest in much else. As for tax cuts, it’s an inopportune juncture in the cycle for aggressive fiscal stimulus. And for major corporate tax reduction more specifically, with boom-time earnings and the loosest Credit conditions imaginable, it’s Epic Stimulus Overload. History will look back at this week - ebullient Republicans sharing the podium and cryptocurrency/blockchain trading madness - and ponder how things got so crazy. Read More

I have preached, in fact I have over-preached, on staying agile in tough markets. Remember, when the beat-down comes your way, I want you all to cover the P/L on your screen with a post-it. This one little trick is something I do myself. By doing this, the trader allows him or herself to make tough, reasoned decisions without the constant distraction that one's profit/loss number can be.
It was a "binary" stock market for 5 years, and as the monster rally went on, it became even more so as more and more equity sub-sectors and asset classes faded away, with "the market" powered by fewer and fewer large-cap growth stocks. Investors either won big investing in large-cap Tech and growth, or you went nowhere with value funds, emerging markets, and small and mid-cap investing styles.
Erik:     Now this massive, massive accumulation of debt in the United States – people like you and I can say this is crazy, the rate that it’s happening at – but, holy cow, look at China. I mean, they’re in a whole different category of rate of accumulation of national debt. It seems to me like they’re trying to almost race the United States to who can get more over-indebted faster.
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