Daily Digest 1/13 - 2011 Gold Lessons, The Year Of The Yo-Yo, Economic Collapse Sends Greeks Back To The Land
- Lawrence Lessig: On America's Lost Ability to Govern, Legalized Corruption, our Broken Republic, and How to Approach Fixing It
- Lessons Learned From Gold In 2011
- The Year Of The Yo-Yo
- MF Global May Not Be Able to Pay Clients Back: Trustee
- Foreigners Sell Record $85 Billion In Treasurys In 6 Consecutive Weeks - Time To Get Concerned?
- The U.S. Dollar Paper Tiger
- Leaked documents reveal US diplomats actually work for Monsanto
- Peak Oil's Effect on Gasoline Prices in 2012
- How the Sunflower can Revolutionise Solar Power Plants
- With Work Scarce in Athens, Greeks Go Back to the Land
- Corn Is Now Too Precious For Ethanol Subsidies
There is a feeling today among Americans that we might not make it. The feeling of inevitability of American greatness is gone... that we have become Britain or Rome or Greece. A generation ago, Reagan rallied the nation to deny a similar charge by Jimmy Carter. Reagan was right. But it is different today. Not that we as a people have lost anything of our potential. But we as a Republic have.
Lessons Learned From Gold In 2011 (David B.)
September watched gold plummet by nearly 9% and spooked investors from the once popular safe haven. Though the metal was able to slightly recover in October and November, the final month of 2011 watched prices fall as low as $1,530/oz. creating an interesting opportunity to buy in to the metal.
The Year Of The Yo-Yo (jdargis)
Traders and professional money managers don’t seem to have any real clue about what’s going to happen, either. You might think that volatility would allow people with superior information and market sense to get ahead. But last year money managers did a very poor job of playing the market. According to estimates made by Goldman Sachs, as of the last week in December seventy-two per cent of core large-cap mutual funds had underperformed their market indexes. The average stock-market mutual fund was down almost three per cent for the year. And hedge-fund managers, who are supposed to thrive on volatility, did even worse, with hedge funds that focus on stocks falling more than seven per cent. Strikingly, some of the biggest flops came from superstars: Bruce Berkowitz, whom Morningstar named one of the money managers of the past decade, saw his flagship fund fall more than thirty per cent; the hedge-fund manager John Paulson, whose bet against mortgage-backed securities a few years ago has been called “the greatest trade ever,” saw one of his funds drop nearly fifty per cent.
Giddens and his team of lawyers said they may not be able to make another mass transfer of funds above the roughly $3.8 billion they have already paid out. That figure represents about 72 percent of the total money held in customer accounts when the firm went under, leaving many customers still thousands or millions of dollars out of pocket.
Last week, when we pointed out what was then a record $77 billion in Treasury sales from the Fed's custody account, in addition to noting the patently obvious, namely that contrary to what one hears in the media, foreigners are offloading US paper hand over first, there was this little tidbit: "The question is what they are converting the USD into, and how much longer will the go on for: the last thing the US can afford is a wholesale dumping of its Treasurys. Because as the chart below vividly demonstrates, the traditional diagonal rise in foreign holdings of US paper has not only pleateaued, but it is in fact declining: a first in the history of the post-globalization world."
The U.S. Dollar Paper Tiger (pinecarr)
The U.S. Dollar is due for some extreme shocks. Some might not think so, given the Euro depression in sentiment and the rattling of big European banks. Word has come that in late February and late March, some important adjustment events are due to kick in, enough to knock over the tables in the temple. Conjecture is wide open and ripe for imagination. For the U.S. Dollar to continue its catbird post in global trade is inconceivable. The elite controllers will do their best to keep the U.S. Dollar in its dominant post. But the rest of the world, especially on its Eastern locales, is working in the other direction.
The undying support of key players within the U.S. towards Monsanto is undeniably made clear not only in this release, but in the legislative decisions taken by organizations such as the FDA and USDA. Legislative decisions such as allowing Monsanto's synthetic hormone Posilac (rBGH) to be injected into U.S. cows despite being banned in 27 countries. How did Monsanto pull this off?
The biotech juggernaut managed to infiltrate the FDA positions responsible for the approval of rBGH, going as far as instating the company's own Margaret Miller as Deputy Director of Human Safety and Consultative Services. After assuming this position, Miller reviewed her own report on the safety and effectiveness of rBGH.
Peak Oil's Effect on Gasoline Prices in 2012 (James S.)
Cognizant of the fact that retail gasoline is currently running nearly 30 cents per gallon higher than it was in January 2008 the year when prices topped out at a national average of $4.11 and that gasoline futures have risen by 30 cents a gallon in the last few weeks, there is reason for concern. Typical of the stories is one from the Los Angeles Times that quotes Tom Kloza, long-time chief analyst for the Oil Price Information Service and the go-to guy when one needs numbers and forecasts on gasoline prices.
The petals of a sunflower are arranged in a special spiral pattern commonly found in nature and known as a Fermat Spiral, a design that has fascinated mathematicians for centuries. Each petal is turned at a “magical” angle of 137 degrees with respects to its neighbour. This has allowed the “footprint” to be further reduced up to 20% of the original PS10; but even better, the spiral pattern reduces the actual number of heliostats needed and the shading they cast on one another, increasing the total efficiency of sunlight reflection. The researchers published their results in the journal Solar Energy, and have recently filed for patent protection.
“When I call my friends and relatives in Athens, they tell me there’s no hope, everything is going from bad to worse,” Ms. Tricha said on a recent afternoon, as she walked through her greenhouse, where thousands of snails lumbered along on rows of damp wooden boards. “So I think our choice was good.”
As for the price of corn in the future, Matt Hartwig, spokesperson for the Renewable Fuels Association, stated, “We don’t expect the price of corn to fall or rise just because the tax incentive goes away. We will produce the same amount of ethanol in 2012 as 2011, if not more.”
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