I think the bottom line is that the hot market is Trump Bashing stories. Pursuing a story that might vindicate him or show him to be the victim of an abusive Obama Administration would bring down the thunder of the entire Left and it would mean basically having to admit that they’ve been butt kissing enablers for the past 2 presidential terms, and that their defenses of Obama and Hillary were really just the soft bigotry of lowered expectations because they were so focused on ‘first woman’ and ‘first black man’ without bothering to listen to what either of them actually said. The cognitive dissonance would then cause the entire left side of the political spectrum of the US to collapse under it’s own weight. Think Inception.
I have tried to explain this concept many times before but never had a chart to do it with. Please note the start date of the chart is 1971, this is not by any coincidence as that was the year the U.S. dollar became fully fiat and backed by nothing but “faith”. Before getting started, it is important to understand what August 15, 1971 really meant and why Nixon took us off the gold standard. The obvious is because with France and other nations demanding conversion of dollars into our gold, it would have only been a few short years before our stockpile was completely depleted. Read More

First, market timing is difficult and often unreliable. But the anonymous author behind the brilliant Philosophical Economics blog (his Twitter handle is Jesse Livermore, the name of a legendary investor of the early twentieth century who made and lost millions and committed suicide in 1940) came up with a terrific method. It’s well worth your while reading his post In Search of the Perfect Recession Indicator.

In the 9th largest economy in the world, the financial markets are crashing, and in the 21st largest economy in the world the central bank just raised interest rates to 65 percent to support a currency that is completely imploding.  Whilethe mainstream media in the United States continues to be obsessed with all things Kavanaugh, an international financial crisis threatens to spiral out of control.  Stock prices are falling and currencies are collapsing all over the planet, but because the U.S. has been largely unaffected so far the mainstream media is mostly choosing to ignore what is happening.  But the truth is that this is serious.  The financial crisis in Italy threatens to literally tear the EU apart, and South America has become an economic horror show. Read More
Exactly one month ago, just as the S&P hit all time high, Bank of America caused a stir when it announced that one of its proprietary "guaranteed bear market" indicators created by the Bank of America quants was just triggered. As we said at the time, what was remarkable about this particular indicator is that it predicted not only the size of the upcoming drop (-12% on average) but also the timing (over the coming three months). Also notable: its uncanny accuracy: it was correct on 11 out of 11 previous occasions after it was triggered.
Although the U.S. Forest Service fought wildfires long before World War II, the war brought a new importance and urgency to the effort. At the time, most able-bodied men were already serving in the armed forces and none could be spared to fight forest fires. The Forest Service began using colorful posters to educate Americans about the dangers of forest fires in the hope that local communities, with the most accurate information, could prevent them from starting in the first place.[7][16]
In 2012, NASA, the U.S. Forest Service, the Texas Forest Service, and Smokey Bear teamed up to celebrate Smokey's 68th birthday at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. The popular mascot toured the center and recorded a promotional announcement for NASA Television. NASA astronaut Joe Acaba and the Expedition 31 crew chose a plush Smokey doll to be the team's launch mascot, celebrating their trip to the International Space Station. During his tour about 250 miles above Earth, Smokey turned 68 years old.[60]

JOIN PETER at the New Orleans Investment Conferencehttps://neworleansconference.com/conference-schedule/A Very Volatile and Technically Weak Trading Day for the DowHere I am for the third day in a row doing a podcast. It's market volatility that has brought me to the mic yet again. The Dow Jones down 525 points; a very volatile and technically ...…
I have had a request from Mrs Macleod to write down in simple terms what on earth is going on in the world, and why is it that I think gold is so important in this context. She-who-must-be-obeyed does not fully share my interest in the subject. An explanation of the big picture is also likely to be useful to many of my readers and their spouses, who do not share an enduring interest in geopolitics either. 
Municipal bonds are securities that are issued for the purpose of financing the infrastructure needs of the issuing municipality. The financed infrastructure needs vary greatly but can include schools, streets and highways, bridges, hospitals, public housing, sewer, water systems, power utilities, and various public projects. Traditionally, municipal bonds are issued and sold to bond holders through a complex network of financial and legal professionals.
There’s simply no single answer to the question: What causes a bear market? It might be monetary conditions, yield curve shifts, surpluses, a sector implosion, excess demand reverting or bad legislation impacting property rights. But it likely won’t be what it was last time. Two bear markets in a row rarely start with the same causes because most investors are always fighting the last war and are prepared for what took them down last time.
Whether it's stated or not, one source of the inchoate outrage triggered by Russian-sourced purchases of adverts on Facebook in 2016 (i.e. "meddling in our election") is the sense that the U.S. is sacrosanct due to our innate moral goodness and our Imperial Project: never mind that the intelligence agencies of all great powers (including the U.S.) meddle in the domestic affairs and elections of other nations, including those of allies as well as geopolitical rivals-- no other great power should ever meddle with U.S. domestic affairs and elections. Read More

The Trimtabs CEO said that, even accepting the argument about annual rebalancing and the fact that an aging demographic has greater need for income investments, investors could choose to go into cash or cash equivalents instead of bonds likely to go down in value. Some bank certificates of deposit are now yielding as much, in some cases more, than Treasurys. "There are other asset classes than stocks and bonds," Santschi said. "There's cash, real estate, commodities, precious metals."
In the US the thing most people think of as inflation is the consumer price index, or CPI, which is now running comfortably above the Fed’s target. But the Fed prefers the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index, which tends to paint a less inflationary picture. And within the PCE universe, core PCE, which strips out energy and food, is the data series that actually motivates Fed action. Read More
Globalization has been bad for these sections of society because it changed the relative value of capital and labor. When capital and goods could flow freely between the US and emerging market countries, the value of labor in the US fell dramatically. Today, we are at a point where labor share of income has fallen to an all-time low of 57%. That means a growing fraction of the gains have been going to capital, and those who have it.
The shares slumped -6.88% after dropping as much as -10% at the lows after the company’s CEO, in an interview with CNBC yesterday, failed to reassure market fears about a weakening financial position. The CEO suggested that the company will now urgently sell assets to address leverage and its precarious liquidity situation whereby it will have to rely on revolvers - and the generosity of its banks - now that it is locked out of the commercial paper market. Read More
RATE AND REVIEW this podcast on Facebook!https://www.facebook.com/PeterSchiff/reviews/Abolish the Capital Gains Tax?If we simply had no capital gains tax, but wen are still taxing the worker on the value of his labor without any deductions whatsoever, I just don't think that's a fair system. That's one of the reasons I would not want to just ab ...…

good article, Doc. It kind of reminds me of a point Mish made a while back about exponential functions and the dangers of apparently small imbalances over time. Basically, if wages are increase slightly slower than inflation (which is bound to happen when the CPI is as cooked as it has been for several decades), the effects will become massive over time. For instance, if real inflation was 4.5% while median wages increase, let’s say, 3.5% per year in the same time, most people will say it’s not a big deal. Just a penny on a dollar. But if this is consistently the case for 25 years running, that $25,000/year job would now be pulling in about $59,000 but the $75,000 house purchase back then would now be demanding about $225,000. The d-to-i ration to maintain the same household on the same job, then, moved from 2.4 to over 3.0. Another 5 years down the road and it’ll up to 3.2. But if those 5 years are between 2008 and 2013, the chances of maintaining any momentum in wages is slim. Adjusted for inflation, everyone I know working the private sector is actually losing ground versus inflation, even with the rare down year factored in. I won’t pronounce it dead just yet, but the American dream certainly is taking a pounding.

A related mainstream truth is rising rates will cause high stock market valuations to fall. In fact, recently, both Bill Gross and Jeffrey Gundlach have commented on the level of 10-year Treasury rates and why they are destined to go higher. Gundlach even went further, suggesting that if 10-year rates were to rise above 2.63% (currently 2.55%), stock prices would begin to fall. Read More
It’s important to remember that a bull market is characterized by a general sense of optimism and positive growth which tends to catalyze greed. A bear market is associated with a general sense of decline which tends to instill fear in the hearts of stockholders. As Rule #1 investors, we act opposite of the investing public – when it comes to bull vs bear markets – and capitalize on their emotions by finding quality stocks at low prices during bear markets and selling during bull markets when they’ve regained their value.

Beyond that, self-motivation is an issue even for people who are hard-working. Most of the people reading this have probably gone to the gym, tried to lose weight and/or gain muscle. How many have successes? How many of people reading this have remained constantly motivated day in day out, year in year out? That is tough, but being a rational investor, requires that kind of discllipine.
The public pension fund system is approaching apocalypse.  Earlier this week teachers who are part of the Colorado public pension system (PERA) staged a walk-out protest over proposed changes to the plan, including raising the percentage contribution to the fund by current payees and raising the retirement age.   PERA backed off but ignoring the obvious problem will not make it go away.
Why has real estate been such a drag on the overall Japanese economy?  First, Japan’s unemployment rate stabilized after these bubbles burst but it shifted to a large temporary or contract based employment economy.  One third of Japanese workers operate under this new world.  Relatively low security with employers and this has spiraled into lower income and money to finance home purchases.  The fact that the U.S. has such a large number of part-time workers and many of the new jobs being added are coming in lower paying sectors signifies that our economy is not supportive of the reasons that gave us solid home prices for many decades.  I think this is a key point many in the real estate industry fail to emphasize.  How can home prices remain inflated if incomes are moving lower?

I would contest a little bit, Erik, the idea that we have not been monetizing the debt. The Fed, of course, has been monetized. It’s buying federal securities with credit that did not exist before the Fed tapped the relevant numbers on its computer keypad. The Fed has come to own substantial portions both of mortgage-backed securities and of Treasuries securities outstandings.
Rebalancing back to 50-50 2x and cash daily will have provide the closest tracking, but the costs will kill. You can rebalance much less frequently, perhaps at 40% bands (when the weights have declined below 30%/risen above 70% for instance) and achieve similar general reward as the 1x with much less rebalance frequency (once every year or two perhaps), but likely with some tracking error – that has 50-50 probability of being better or worse.
You never know, at any point in time, if you are in a bear market. A bear market—commonly defined as a period in which a given stock index has dropped at least 20% from a peak—can only be identified after the fact. Until the market has dropped 20% from a peak, you are not yet in a bear market. Once it’s dropped 20%, you can say that you were in a bear market, but you still have no idea where the market’s going next of if you are in what will later be viewed as a bear market. Every uptick is potentially the end of a bear market and the beginning of a new bull market.
Inflation is directly responsible for the price increase of everything. That doesn’t mean that all commodities or financial instruments go up in unison, they don’t. But soybeans or silver are not inherently more valuable today than they were a hundred years ago. What has changed is the value of the dollar, not the commodity. Markets search constantly for the correct price. That is why prices go up and prices go down. The market never quite knows what is the right price for anything so it searches until buyers and sellers are satisfied with price and make a transaction. Read More
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.

I have tried to explain this concept many times before but never had a chart to do it with. Please note the start date of the chart is 1971, this is not by any coincidence as that was the year the U.S. dollar became fully fiat and backed by nothing but “faith”. Before getting started, it is important to understand what August 15, 1971 really meant and why Nixon took us off the gold standard. The obvious is because with France and other nations demanding conversion of dollars into our gold, it would have only been a few short years before our stockpile was completely depleted. Read More

I forget now exactly what the size of the interest expense of the public debt is, about $400 billion. The government is paying 2.2 or something on its debt. Doubling of yields to 4-something and doubling of gross interest expense to $800 billion or so would certainly be an inconvenience. It would require very painful political choices. But, no, it is not impossible.