- One month ago, we first presented several striking charts and observations from Credit Suisse’s retail analyst, Christian Buss, who showed the extent of the devastation sweeping through the US retail sector.
- To be sure, while the mass shuttering of retail stores – just today Michael Kors announced the company would close up to 125 full-price retail stores –
- .. and most recently discussed in the context of the next “big short” trade, namely the ongoing collapse in the mall REITs and associated Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities and CDS, one observation from Buss left us borderline speechless: “Barely a quarter into 2017, year-to-date retail store closings have already surpassed those of 2008.”
Read more at:One Bank’s Stunning Forecast: “A Quarter Of All Malls Will Close Over The Next Five Years”
- Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari was the latest Fed official to claim in an essay – thus following in the time-honored footsteps of former Fed Chair Ben Bernanke – that “spotting bubbles is hard,” that the Fed cannot see them, and that if it could see them, it shouldn’t do anything to stop them because it had only “limited policy tools,” and because “the costs of making policy mistakes can be very high.”
- But it’s OK to use these “limited policy tools” to inflate the greatest bubbles the world has ever seen and then preside over the damage they cause to the real economy before they even implode.
- Neither Kashkari nor anyone else working at the Treasury Department in 2006 – when they were tasked by Secretary of the Treasury Hank Paulson to look for signs of trouble because they were “due for some form of crisis,” as he writes – could see any bubbles, not even the housing bubble although it was already beginning to deflate.
Read more at:Dear Fed, It’s Not “Really Hard to Spot Bubbles”
- If everything is going to be “just fine”, why are so many big names in the financial community warning about an imminent meltdown? I don’t think that I have seen so many simultaneous warnings about a market crash since just before the great financial crisis of 2008. And at this point, you would have to be quite blind not to see that stocks are absurdly overvalued and that a correction is going to happen at some point. And when stocks do start crashing, lots of fingers are going to start pointing at President Trump, but it won’t be his fault.
- The Federal Reserve and other central banks are primarily responsible for creating this bubble, and they should definitely get the blame for what is about to happen to global financial markets.
- My regular readers are quite familiar with my thoughts on where the market is headed, so today let me share some thoughts from five highly respected financial experts…
Read more at:5 Highly Respected Financial Experts That Are Warning That A Market Crash Is Imminent
- What would America look like today if the dream of our Founding Fathers of a limited central government had actually been realized? We have become so accustomed to big government that many of us simply assume that this is the only way that things can be done. But the truth is that things don’t have to be this way. We can have the kind of very limited federal government that our forefathers originally intended, but it is going to take a great deal of education and an enormous amount of political engagement in order to get there.
- On this Memorial Day, we will remember those that have died for our country, but let it also be a call to action. In every generation, Americans have had to stand up to defend the cause of liberty and freedom, and it will be no different in our generation. Just like during the Revolutionary War, there is no guarantee that we will be able to save America from the forces that are trying to destroy it, but if we sit back and do nothing they will win by default.
Read more at:Less Government. More Freedom
- Is there gold price manipulation going on? Absolutely. There’s no question about it. That’s not just an opinion.
- There is statistical evidence piling up to make the case, in addition to anecdotal evidence and forensic evidence. The evidence is very clear, in fact.
- I’ve spoken to members of Congress. I’ve spoken to people in the intelligence community, in the defense community, very senior people at the IMF. I don’t believe in making strong claims without strong evidence, and the evidence is all there.
- I spoke to a PhD statistician who works for one of the biggest hedge funds in the world. I can’t mention the fund’s name but it’s a household name. You’ve probably heard of it. He looked at COMEX (the primary market for gold) opening prices and COMEX closing prices for a 10-year period. He was dumbfounded.
Read more at:The Golden Conspiracy
- From the Balkans to the US, walls are going up, not down, according to demographer and The Fourth Turning author Neil Howe.
- Speaking to a packed crowd at Mauldin Economics’ Strategic Investment Conference in Orlando, Howe said we are reliving many of the same trends and changes of the 1930s.
- Faith in Democracy Is Fading
- “Worldwide, people are losing trust in institutions,” he said. “Trust in the military, small business, and police is still there. But trust in democracies, media, and politicians is dropping.”
- When was the last time we saw these changes and the rise of right-wing populism?” he asked. “The 1930s.”
Read more at:The Fourth Turning’s Neil Howe Warns: We Are In The 1930s, “Winter Is Coming
- It’s no secret that Google already monitors its users’ online shopping activity, but now it will follow them out of their homes and keep a close eye on every interaction they make. The tech giant announced a new system to track users’ in-store credit card purchases Tuesday in a statement published on the company’s official blog.
- Google rolled out the new tool at Google Marketing Next, an annual event geared toward advertisers where the company unveils its newest innovations in marketing. “Store sales management” works by pulling data from Google’s third-party partnerships, which capture approximately 70% of credit card transactions in the United States. The system then streamlines user information in order to generate reports automatically sent to merchants who opt in. The reports will measure the effectiveness of online advertisements by matching in-store transactions back to Google ads.
Read more at:Google Is About To Start Tracking Your Offline Behavior, Too