US debt is rising very quickly, auto, student and credit card debt overtook mortgages. The Fed’s most watched indicator for inflation is starting to tick up. US retail companies are very worried about 2018, we are going to see a lot more stores close down because when the holiday season is a bust they will not be able to pay for the debt that is coming due. Global equities have been rising for 13 consecutive months in a row, even with the printing of currency, hmmm. Coinbase was ordered to hand over thousands of people who traded in cryptocurrency. NYT pushing fake news? NYT states that Tillerson is going to be fired but the White House says the opposite. Russia RT has lost it’s capitol credentials. NK releases photos of missile and Kim Jong Un. US wants other countries to severe ties with NK, China and Russia say no. Iraq wants US troops out of the country. 400 marines will be leaving Syria and Iraq. NATO says that Russia and NK are using cyber warfare.
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Current News – 11.30.2017
- In a report released today by DBRS titled “Consumer debt and debt burden”, the rating agency which is best known for keep Italian debt eligible for ECB monetization at the peak of the European banking crisis, looks at the latest Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit issued by the NY Fed (discussed here previously) which showed that consumer debt
- for the third quarter of 2017 was approximately $12.96 trillion, representing an increase of $116 billion over the second quarter of 2017. The debt level for the first three quarters of 2017 has continued to increase above the previous record debt level which was established in the third quarter of 2008 as shown in Exhibit 1 below.
DBRS also highlights that not only did total debt levels increase, but their composition changed
- total mortgage debt has decreased since 2008,
- : since 2008, the growth in total debt has been attributable to the auto loan and student loan sectors. Auto loan debt has increased by 50% since 2008, to slightly over $1.2 trillion from approximately $800 billion. The most dramatic growth rate, has been in student loan debt which has grown by 122% since 2008, to $1.357 trillion from $611 billion.
- But a bigger concern flagged by DBRS is that the growth in consumer debt is raising concerns when viewed in the context of the existing wage stagnation hampering the current economic environment. The rating agency cites a paper published in October 2017 by the Harvard Business Review which stated that the inflation-adjusted hourly wage has grown by only 0.2% per year since the mid-1970s and labor’s share of income has decreased to its current level of 57% from 65%.
- , the purchasing power of US households has been largely a function of rapidly rising debt, which over the past decade has risen 60% faster than wages.
- , October’s 1.4% rise (as expected) offers some hope to Janet, Jay, and their friends that an inflection point has been reached in the transitory disinflationary spiral.
- September’s monthly gain was revised upward to 0.2 percent from 0.1 percent, making for the fastest consecutive increases since January and February.
- Right now, retail stores are closing at a pace that we haven’t seen since the 2008-2009 financial crisis.
- Though many are likely aware of the above, what isn’t so well known is how much debt is coming due starting next year. That’s really the heart of the issue, which is why America’s ‘Retail Apocalypse’ Is Just Getting Started,
- Though online retailers are definitely a threat and many traditional retail businesses are overstored, what’s really going to drive the shakeout of legacy retailers is debt.
- And the fact is, a lot of this debt is starting to come due next year, Townsend stated, and many retailers may not be able to pay it off or refinance it.
- Unless the world comes to a very serious end overnight, global equity markets are about to do something they have never done before… rise for 13 consecutive months.
- Not one losing month so far in 2017…
- The global equity gauge was on course to finish November with its 13th straight monthly gain – the longest monthly winning streak in the index’s 30-year history. The total gain over the 13 months nears 23 percent.
- But then again.. the world has also never seen so many central banks, printing so much money, for so long a time…
- On Tuesday, a California federal court ordered the popular cryptocurrency exchange and wallet service Coinbase to turn over records on thousands of customers to the Internal Revenue Service.
- The requested records include the name, birthdate, address, and account activity for any user who bought, sold, sent, or received more than $20,000 worth of Bitcoin in their accounts between 2013 and 2015.
- The order marks the end of a year-long court battle between the IRS and Coinbase that began last November when the IRS sought user records for all Coinbase customers. After meeting resistance from Coinbase and Coinbase customers, who argued that the order was overly broad, the IRS narrowed the scope of its request to only cover Coinbase customers who had trafficked in more than $20,000 worth of cryptocurrency in the specified time period.
- US citizens are supposed to pay capital gains tax on cryptocurrency transactions and the IRS labels virtual currencies as property for federal tax purposes. As the court order shows, more than 10,000 people bought or sold more than $20,000 worth of cryptocurrency, but only “800 to 900 taxpayers a year have electronically filed returns with a property description related to bitcoin from 2013 through 2015.”
- a New York Times report published Thursday morning and citing an anonymous White House official, that Trump was considering ousting Tillerson and replacing him with CIA chief Mike Pompeo. Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) was mentioned as the possible replacement for Pompeo.
- President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson have areas of disagreement when it comes to US policy, but there are no plans to replace him, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said. She was later backed by the White House.
- the White House also confirmed that Tillerson remains the top US diplomat.
- “The secretary of state is here, and we’re working hard to get big things accomplished,”
- The US-Russian war regarding media rages on, with the US Congress withdrawing RT America’s Capitol credentials, and Russia planning to retaliate.
- Moscow has exempted Russian state-run companies and departments from the obligatory disclosure of contractor and subcontractor data. The decree was signed by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on Monday.
- The step is reportedly aimed at protecting the firms from another round of US sanctions, which might come into effect as early as February 2018. The measure is temporary with state purchases to be classified until July 1, 2018, according to the order.
- Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that it would be a mistake to sever ties with North Korea.
- Earlier this week, reports began to surface about the alleged deployment of the Chinese Special Forces to Syria.
- According to the reports, the Chinese Special Forces were going to be deployed to Syria to help defeat the estimated 2,500 Uyghur separatists currently fighting near the Turkish border.
- On Thursday, Al-Masdar reached out to a military source in Damascus to confirm whether or not these reports were accurate.
- The source in Damascus stated that the Syrian Army has not received any information about the alleged deployment of Chinese troops to Syria.
- He added that the Syrian Army has no reason to believe Chinese troops are deploying to Syria at this time.
- A senior commander of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), also known as Hashd al-Sha’abi, says American military forces must leave his country’s soil following the eradication of the Takfiri terror group.
- Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi had earlier said that US military forces would not stay on in the Arab country once Iraqi forces retake Daesh-held areas.
- The Iraqi commander further urged the international community, the US and Europe in particular, to stop the influx of terrorists into Iraq.
- The U.S. military operation in Syria and Iraq says it is sending home more the 400 Marines and their artillery from Syria, after they accomplished their mission against the Islamic State group.
- The U.S. is estimated to have more than 1,500 troops posted to Syria, including special forces, forward air controllers, and at least one Marine artillery unit. They have more than a dozen bases in north Syria.
- The battle against the Islamic State (IS) is nearly finished for the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), but the war in Syria is far from over.
- With major jihadist groups like Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham and Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham still operating in several areas across Syria, the Syrian Arab Army will have their hands full in 2018 as they shift their attention away from the eastern part of the country.
- The Syrian Arab Army is now planning to attack these heavily fortified areas like Idlib and northern Hama, which are firmly under the control of HTS and Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham.
- Major conflict is closer than four years ago, generals warn in a bombshell report
- THE world is being pushed to the brink of “hyper war” by the growing threat from China and Russia, constant cyber attacks and artificial intelligence, Nato has warned.
- And the chances of the West winning such a high-tech global conflict are shrinking, generals said in a bombshell report.
- North Korea’s nukes are also a potential trigger for World War Three, according to the latest edition of Nato’s four-yearly risk report.
- It says the allies cannot afford to fall behind in the AI arms race – both in terms of cyber warfare and future robot soldiers.