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Sheelah Kolhatkar: Hedge Funds Are The Robber Barons Of Our Time

And have enjoyed unfair advantage for far too long
Sunday, April 2, 2017, 10:14 AM

Sheelah Kolhatkar, former hedge fund analyst and staff writer at the New Yorker, thinks hedge funds have enjoyed enormous unfair advantages for far too long.

In her recent book Black Edge: Inside Information, Dirty Money, and the Quest to Bring Down the Most Wanted Man on Wall Street, she details out how many hedge funds use financial engineering and accounting tricks -- legal and illegal -- to fill their coffers at investor expense. And then they use those ill-gotten gains to influence politics. » Read more

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Off The Cuff: Eggshell Markets

Why the market can't sustain any losses
Wednesday, March 29, 2017, 7:20 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and John Rubino discuss:

  • Vexing Volatility
    • How the VIX is being used to drive the markets
  • We Can't Handle Losses Anymore
    • Why the market is now incredibly vulnerable to downturns
  • Our Captive System
    • Until it breaks, the system is run to serve the banks, not us
  • The Death Of The Living Wage
    • The hollowing out of the middle class continues

Lots of sobering material packed into this week's Off The Cuff discussion between Chris and John. While there are signs of growing instability to be found nearly everywhere, both are very concerned about the extreme fragility of today's financial ""markets"". At the slightest sign of weakness, tremendous interventions now happen on a daily basis to keep prices from falling, even by a single percent.

The reason why is that the system is too vulnerable for ANY degree of loss to be sustained without fear of collapsing it.

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today. » Read more

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Off The Cuff: Weariness Everywhere In The Markets

The support underlying today's sky-high prices is faltering
Thursday, March 23, 2017, 4:43 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and Charles Hugh Smith discuss:

  • Weariness Everywhere In The Markets
    • The post-election price support is evaporating
  • Confused Leaders
    • Chris recaps his latest meetings at the U.N.
  • Boomer Guilt
    • Divisions between the older haves & younger have-nots are growing
  • Banks & Government
    • A partnership of evil

Charles returns to Off The Cuff this week to note the recent lack of vigor in today's financial markets. Does it portend a turning point?

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today. » Read more

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Shaun Chamberlin: Surviving The Aftermath Of The Market Economy

What we'll need to persevere through collapse
Sunday, January 8, 2017, 1:23 PM

Historian and economist David Fleming undertook the writing of Lean Logic a grand vision that projected out the likely path of collapse for our currently unsustainable way of life, as well as the key success factors society will need to cultivate to come out the other side.

Following his death, his writing partner Shaun Chamberlin distilled the book's prime conclusions into the more accessible Surviving The Future: Culture, carnival, and capital in the aftermath of the market economy. Shaun, who has also been deeply involved with Rob Hopkins in the Transition Movement since its inception, stresses that localized communities that pursue developing as much independence from the central economy as possible will be the foundations for entering a sustainable, enjoyable future. » Read more

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2016 Year In Review

A Clockwork Orange
Thursday, December 22, 2016, 9:03 PM

Every year, friend-of-the-site David Collum writes a detailed "Year in Review" synopsis full of keen perspective and plenty of wit. This year's is no exception. As with past years, he has graciously selected PeakProsperity.com as the site where it will be published in full. It's quite longer than our usual posts, but worth the time to read in full. » Read more

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Off The Cuff: The Sell-Off In Bonds

Is the world's biggest bubble now bursting?
Friday, November 11, 2016, 4:35 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and John Rubino discuss:

  • Deconstructing The Election Results
    • Why the upset happened
  • Insurmountable Odds?
    • Trump inherits a country in tremendous debt
  • The Sell-off In Bonds
    • Is the world's biggest bubble bursting?
  • The Age Of The Iconoclast
    • Brexit + Trump is just the start of this age of upsets

So much to talk about this week....  Chris and John deconstruct Trump's upset win as well as the tremendous challenges he faces, inheriting a grossly overleveraged economy that is grossly overdue for a market correction. They're also are extremely concerned by the sharp acceleration we've seen this week in the sell-off in the bond market. As a reminder, the size of the bond market dwarfs other financial assets (except derivatives). It is "for all the marbles", as they say.

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today. » Read more

Podcast

Janet Tavakoli: Life And Death On Wall Street

History shows systemic corruption can be overcome
Sunday, October 30, 2016, 5:06 PM

Financial markets and derivatives authority Janet Tavakoli returns to the podcast to discuss a number of the themes contained in her new book Decisions: Life And Death On Wall Street.

She paints a particularly informative timeline of the greed and rot that has come to dominate the modern financial system, and how its tentacles have fully penetrated and subjugated the halls of power in Washington DC. » Read more

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Hoping For A Market Crash

If we inflate much higher, the fall is likely to kill us
Thursday, July 28, 2016, 1:32 AM

We desperately need to have new national and global conversations about everything from how we’ll feed everyone in 2050, to developing a coherent sustainable energy policy, to the fact that each year is hotter than the year before, to the idea that we’re living with a soul crushing sense of scarcity in a world of abundance.

There’s lots that needs addressing, and the process should begin with letting go of the old narrative so that we can make space for assembling the new one. » Read more

Podcast

Grant Williams: The Rising Danger Of A Bidless Market

We risk a future of flash crashes as liquidity dries up
Sunday, July 17, 2016, 12:18 PM

Grant Williams, veteran portfolio and strategy advisor, as well as proprietor of the economic blog Things That Make You Go Hmmm returns to the podcast this week to discuss his great concern about the liquidity risk underlying financial markets long-addicted to central bank rescue stimulus. » Read more

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The Great Market Tide Has Now Shifted To Risk-Off Assets

A global sea-change in risk appetite & sentiment
Friday, July 8, 2016, 3:03 PM

In the conventional investment perspective, risk-on assets (i.e. investments with higher risks and higher potential returns) such as stocks are on a see-saw with risk-off assets (investments with lower returns and lower risk, such as Treasury bonds). When risk appetites are high, institutional managers and speculators move money into stocks and high-yield junk bonds, and move money out of safe-haven assets such as gold and U.S. Treasuries.

But recently, markets are no longer following this convention. Safe haven assets such as precious metals and Treasuries are soaring at the same time that stock markets bounced strongly off the post-Brexit lows.

Risk-on assets (stocks) rising at the same time as safe-haven assets is akin to dogs marrying cats and living happily ever after. 

What the heck is going on? » Read more