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    Core PCE at 28-Year Highs & The Outcome They Wanted

    Weekly Market Update 27 August 2021
    by davefairtex

    Sunday, August 29, 2021, 10:33 AM

Weekly Market Commentary

The Fed’s favorite inflation gauge, “Core PCE”, rose 0.3375% m/m [3.62% y/y] this month – the highest increase since the early 90s.   Powell’s speech (released at 10 am on Friday) was seen by the market as dovish, however, and that drove PM prices higher in response.  Even so, my sense is that the Fed will start maybe-sort-of-thinking-about-tapering, either at this coming meeting, or the next one.

The buck retreated [-0.80%] this week, unwinding most of last week’s rally.  After breaking out last week, the buck’s trend is looking a little bit bearish this week.

The drop in the buck helped gold substantially [+37.98 +2.08%]; gold even managed to close back above the 200 MA.  Most of this week’s move came on Friday following the release of Powell’s speech at 10AM.  The trend for gold – call it a weak uptrend.

Silver performed even better [+1.07 +4.65%], with most of the moves happening on Monday and Friday.  Interestingly, commercial shorts continued to flee silver during this week’s rally, which I take to be a bullish sign.  Commercial shorts remain at two-year lows – and they are not far from a three-year low.  Last time we were here was back in 2019 when silver was trading around $15/oz.  It sure looks like the banksters do not want to be short silver at this time.  This sort of thing usually happens around the lows.  I know, I keep saying this – but then the commercial short levels drop some more!

Its almost as if the commercials really don’t want to be on the hook to deliver actual silver bars if price ends up rallying.

The miners recovered from last week’s plunge, erasing most of last weeks loss [+6.81%], printing a strong-looking bullish reversal pattern, and it seems as though the miners are back in an uptrend – after dropping for much of the last 11 weeks.

Crude retraced all of last week’s losses and then some [+6.75 +10.92%].  As with silver, the commercial shorts are hovering around multi-year lows – even though the price has fallen less than $10 over the past 8 weeks.  Last time we saw the commercial shorts at these levels, oil was around $40. This behavior suggests to me that the commercials do not want to be caught short crude right now – just like silver.  It seems like higher oil prices are probably ahead, since the well-connected banksters are usually right about these sorts of things.  Perhaps if President Grandpa just grovels a little bit more – Saudi Arabia will produce more oil, and that will fix everything?  Not likely.  The Oligarchy definitely wants higher oil prices.  Because – “climate change!”  Higher oil prices = “easy”.  Energy independence = “hard.”

Equities broke out to yet another new all time high this week, up +39.37 [+0.88%].  All news is good news for equities, it seems.  At  least right now.  Sector map was bullish, with energy & financials in the lead.

While crappy debt is doing well [+0.83%], the 10-year moved slightly lower [yield  rose +4.7 bp to 1.31%].  While the 10-year did seem to like Powell’s speech, it didn’t really move all that much.

If the Fed is going to stop printing, they don’t seem to be in a big hurry to do it.  At least not this week anyway. Even with core PCI near 30 year highs.  Perhaps inflation is the goal too?  Hmm.  No “perhaps” about it.  The country is getting the outcome they want.  Same as for what is happening in Afghanistan.

News That Caught My Eye This Week

Get Vaccinated or Families Lose Pensions, Local Chinese Authorities Say

In a bid to improve vaccination rates, local authorities in China are punishing entire families if one member refuses to receive jabs against the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.

Officials from several counties and cities governments said they will stop giving pensions and medical aid to the unvaccinated. Authorities will also bar unvaccinated individuals from visiting schools, workplaces, or other areas outside their homes, such as shops, banks, and libraries.

Source

In China, the shots are so good, and so widely accepted, that Chinese Plebe families will face collective punishment (an “unvaxxed lockdown?”) if any individual Plebe within the family decides they don’t want the shot.  This is interesting, because as we know, “COVID lockdowns” started first in China, and then migrated worldwide.  Now we’re seeing “unvaxxed lockdowns.”  Oligarchy is incredibly jealous of the CCP’s vice-grip over its own population.  The “China Model” does appear to be the global governance model they want to adopt.

I must confess I am curious how much someone has to pay in China to get their “compliance card.”  I’m just guessing that the Leadership won’t need to get the shot if they don’t want it.  That’s also how it always is.  Shots for thee, but not for me.

How many CCP governance model imports will we put up with, I wonder, before it all blows up?


Biden to campaign for California Gov. Newsom ahead of recall vote

The recall drive against Newsom went into overdrive after he was photographed last November attending a maskless dinner with 11 others at the exclusive French Laundry eatery in Napa County after telling Californians to avoid gatherings of more than three households. He has also been criticized for sending his children to a private school that adopted a hybrid learning model while most public school students remained stuck in remote learning last school year.

Source

So the increasingly unpopular President Grandpa is going to campaign on behalf of Governor French Laundry.  I’m not sure if this will end up helping.  However, it is an indicator that the Governor is in big trouble.  First Cuomo, and now French Laundry – leaders of the two largest Blue states, under extreme pressure.  Its not exactly a ringing endorsement of popular support for the Oligarchy’s pandemic policies.

Larry Elder, a black radio commentator, is leading the recall pack.  You know they are worried about him when they start calling him, “the black face of White Supremacy.”  I think the whole race-baiting thing is so 2020 – a sort of “fun-once” experiment that people are now tired of, after 18 months of “California Lockdowns”, where the elites do what they want, send their kids to private schools, while the Plebe children get Zoom “education” and are told not to leave their homes because, pandemic.  Source


CDC’s COVID-19 eviction moratorium blocked by Supreme Court

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Supreme Court’s conservative majority is allowing evictions to resume across the United States, blocking the Biden administration from enforcing a temporary ban that was put in place because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The court’s action late Thursday ends protections for roughly 3.5 million people in the United States who said they faced eviction in the next two months, according to Census Bureau data from early August.

Source

That’s hundreds of thousands of mom-and-pop landlords who will now be able to get paying tenants in their duplexes, allowing them to actually make their mortgage payments instead of having to default on them and lose their life’s savings.  Perhaps the “forever-eviction-moratorium”, which is another cog in the middle-class-to-Oligarchy wealth transfer machine, will finally end.

The ongoing destruction of the US middle class is not a figment of our imagination.  “Your middle-class biz is closed – our agent, Governor French Laundry, says it is non-essential, and whats more, the tenants in your duplex don’t need to pay – and you can’t kick them out because – pandemic – but you still need to make those mortgage payments!  Its a pity you can’t borrow at 2.5% in the bond market like Blackrock can.”

The Supremes have called a halt to this particular plan.  At least until Congress passes another one, and President Grandpa signs it.

“Build Back Better!  You’ll own nothing.  And you’ll be happy!”


A study confirms a small risk of blood clots after vaccines, but not as high as the risk Covid brings.

Source

Wow!  We finally have an acknowledgement that the shots really do cause clots!  Welcome to the world of science, New York Times!  Next step: risk/benefit calculations.  For instance, if you are 14 years old, and your “COVID mortality risk” is 1:1,000,000, perhaps that “small” clotting risk may not be all that great a trade-off for you.  Whadda ya say, paper of record?  And – after talking vax risk/benefit, could we maybe address that “one-size-fits-all-vax-mandates-using-leaky-failing-vaccines-with-a-35%-COVID-seroprevalance?”  Turns out, natural immunity really is a thing!  And a bunch of people have it already!  Maybe they don’t need the shot!  And what’s the incidence of “rare” adverse events for people who already have natural immunity?  More risk/benefit discussions!  Actual science!  Personal choice too!

Man will they look stupid – and not too long from now – to their own readership if they don’t get on board the “actual science” train.


Fed chair Powell says he supports starting to taper bond purchases this year

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell revealed on Friday that he was one of the majority of Fed officials who believe the central bank can “taper” or slow down the pace of its bond purchases this year.

Source

I’m going to call our Fed Chairman taper-hesitant, and an inflation-denier.  Well sure inflation is 4% annualized, even with the government’s grossly understated “Core CPI”, but – all this is “likely to prove temporary.”  No wage-price spiral.

Snark aside, Powell might be correct about “no wage-price spiral.” I see three possible reasons for this: 1) In September, Blue states will stop paying people not to work, 2) the millions of “new worker”/illegals that are swarming across the southern border (no mask, ID, passport, or COVID test required, unlike you and me if we arrive on an international flight) will definitely reduce wage pressures, and 3) we just got 100,000 new workers airlifted in from Afghanistan!   I suspect the current wage-price inflation (and all those “help-wanted”) signs will disappear by end of September – or, latest – end of October.


1.6m Moderna doses withdrawn in Japan over contamination

TOKYO/ NEW YORK — About 1.6 million doses of Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine have been taken out of use in Japan because of contamination reported in some vials, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare said early Thursday.

Several vaccination centers have reported that vaccine vials contained foreign matter, according to an announcement from the ministry, which added it will seek to minimize the impact of the withdrawal on the country’s inoculation program.

The ministry said later in the day that the substance that had been mixed in may have been metal. “It’s a substance that reacts to magnets,” a ministry official said. “It could be metal.”

Source

Interesting.  A “foreign matter” reacts-to-magnets compound in the vaccine, you say?

What’s even more interesting is that Japan’s ministry of health actually checked.  Can you imagine the NIH or the CDC conducting such a check?  FDA?  Not possible – they’ve staked what fragments remain of their vanishing credibility (Aduhelm: Doesn’t work, but – Approved!!  Ivermectin: saved hundreds of millions of humans from river blindness but – For Cows and Horses Only!!) on the shot being “safe and effective” with only very, very, super-duper-rare side effects (*).

(*) such as the 13,627 deaths reported as of Aug 20.


U.S. retaliates against ISIS with drone strike in Afghanistan

Source

There were a cascade of articles about the entirely predictable suicide bombing attack on our outnumbered and outgunned soldiers guarding the surrounded Kabul airport, including an all-of-media excitement over a new US drone attack – “we killed a planner! Woohoo!”

Step #1: first, shoot yourself several times in the foot.  Step #2: be puzzled and angry when your self-inflicted wound starts to hurt.  Step #3: to salve your wounded ego, blame someone else for your self-inflicted injury.  Step #4: shoot this other person.

Can the US military be this incompetent?  Maybe those in command who are pliable enough to actually execute the Oligarchy’s force-wide hunt for “extremists” just do not have the mental agility to organize any difficult real-world missions.

Or perhaps they’re all paid CCP agents.  After all, if Swalwell is able to remain on the House Intel committee after having a relationship with a CCP spy, what does “impossible” really look like?

Or maybe Defense/Industrial is working overtime to create a pretext to stay there – or perhaps start a new war – by sociopathically sacrificing the lives of American servicemen and women as the mechanism.  And the about-to-leave-via-the-revolving-door “Generals” are playing along because they know who will really butter their bread post “service to the country.”

Or maybe Oligarchy is getting ready to dump President Grandpa?  With the incredibly inauthentic – even for a politician! – Kamala Harris waiting excitedly in the wings.  And – who can say – maybe Pelosi has her eye on the about-to-become-vacant VP slot.  Then, six months later, they pull a Cuomo and “encourage” Kamala to resign (because – whatever) and we end up with President Pelosi.  Or – as Jim Kunstler suggests – President Obama!  It sure would be quite the operation to backdoor him into office for a third term.  And that sets Obama up for another $63 million “book deal” in 2025.  For sure he gets another mansion – or maybe two this time!

Is this a conspiracy?  Or incompetence?  Its hard to say from 100,000 feet.  But I liked Lara Logan’s take: the US is getting the outcome it wanted in Afghanistan.  It has the power to change the outcome, and it is not using this power at all.  Not even now.  Lots of levers they could pull.  They aren’t pulling any of them.

Same is true about inflation.  Fed has levers – but they are not pulling any of them – with Core PCE at 4%!  And oil prices – same thing.  And unlimited immigration – same thing.  And the destruction of middle-class small business, and middle-class mom-and-pop landlords.  And, of course, No Treatments For You, leading directly to an increase in fear and death.  These are – all of it – the outcome they wanted.

Its enough to make a guy a little bit skeptical of central authority.

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16 Comments

  • Sun, Aug 29, 2021 - 11:21am

    #1
    Dontknownothin

    Dontknownothin

    Status: Gold Member

    Joined: Mar 14 2020

    Posts: 663

    9

    Love it

    Dave,

    These are great. I love your sardonic cynicism and wit backed by charts and news. Keep it up.

    What is your take on the economic situation at the end of September given increasing trend in oil, supply of labor, eviction moratorium reversal, and weak leadership. I guess the real question is when do you expect the feds economic vaccination policy to lose efficacy?

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  • Sun, Aug 29, 2021 - 12:05pm

    #2
    davefairtex

    davefairtex

    Status: Member

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 2918

    11

    i don't know

    Yeah.  I don't know.  This is uncharted territory.  The 3.5 $trillion budget could pass.  And then the printing would be off the charts.  The buck would (probably) tank, and oil, gold, and silver would shoot higher.  Maybe.

    What if ADE happens?  That causes a market crash - similar to Feb/Mar 2020.  They'll try to blame the unvaxxed, of course.  Not sure it will work.  "LOCKDOWNS!"  Because of course they work so well.  And triple masks.  Because, common sense.

    Then again, Delta might just natural-vax most of the US by end of next month, bringing about that elusive herd immunity.  Saw numbers that Texas has a 35% seroprevalence - I think that was in July.

    And there's the spike in horse paste consumption.  That's probably a wildcard.  McCullough said the telemed guys are overwhelmed right now.  And the "corporate" pharmacies won't release IVM for COVID.  Because the pharmacists "know better."  Or something.  But there sure are a lot of horses out there.  And - say - 99% of them will do the right thing.  Sure beats the "No Treaments For You" => hospitalized => ventilator => death outcome.

    Maybe - a breakthrough infection on top of failing double-jab efficacy ends up accidentally working out all right for most people?  Wouldn't that be a funny, unexpected outcome?  "Hey I got natural immunity after all."

    My main concern is geopolitics.  China & Taiwan.  If the CCP uses our abject humiliation in Afghanistan to stage an invasion of Taiwan - apart from the humanitarian tragedy (I have friends there) - given our bumbling, incompetent, "race-focused" Pentagon leadership that seems to be incapable of strategic thought, we will humiliate ourselves further, maybe lose a few carrier battle groups, and at the end of the day - we won't have any more chips.  For anything.  For years.

    This is a problem.

    Reshoring our industry - out of China, back to the US - really was the right idea.

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  • Sun, Aug 29, 2021 - 1:08pm

    #3
    Nate

    Nate

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    8

    no way US military is this incompetent

    Spoke with a coworker this week and I told him there is no way the US military is this incompetent.  This was planned and my guess is that they are getting the outcome they want.

    This is my vote as to what is really happening:

    Or maybe Oligarchy is getting ready to dump President Grandpa?  With the incredibly inauthentic – even for a politician! – Kamala Harris waiting excitedly in the wings.  And – who can say – maybe Pelosi has her eye on the about-to-become-vacant VP slot.  Then, six months later, they pull a Cuomo and “encourage” Kamala to resign (because – whatever) and we end up with President Pelosi.

    President Pelosi?  Pass the barf bag.

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  • Sun, Aug 29, 2021 - 5:23pm

    #4
    FooBarr

    FooBarr

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    0

    Dave, Chart Question

    Dave, what does the small blue and red dots represent on you candlestick charts?

    thx

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  • Sun, Aug 29, 2021 - 6:02pm

    #5

    thc0655

    Status: Platinum Member

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    Posts: 2828

    3

    There is zero chance Gov. French Laundry will not win the recall. ZERO!

    https://www.businessinsider.com/passed-out-man-with-california-recall-ballots-arrested-2021-8?op=1

    On August 16, the Torrance Police Department arrested a man in a 7-Eleven parking lot who was passed out in a car containing Xanax pills, a loaded firearm, methamphetamine, a scale, drivers licenses and credit cards in other individuals' names, and more than 300 unopened mail-in ballots for the California gubernatorial recall election.

    Investigators, including TPD's Special Investigation Division, the US Postal Service, and the LA County District Attorney Public Integrity Unit, are looking into how the man, whose name has not been released, obtained the ballots and what he intended to do with them, TPD said in an August 23 post on Facebook.

    The suspect was arrested on numerous weapons, narcotics, and forgery violations, the Associated Press reported.…

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  • Sun, Aug 29, 2021 - 6:44pm

    #6
    hail

    hail

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    1

    Lara Logan

    Speaking of Lara Logan, she had a very interesting / emotional interview with Glenn Beck on Thursday (the day the bomb went off).  Both were in the Middle East trying to get people out of Afghanistan.

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 4:16am

    Grover

    Grover

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    4

    President Pelosi? Not This Term

    Nate wrote:

    Or maybe Oligarchy is getting ready to dump President Grandpa?  With the incredibly inauthentic – even for a politician! – Kamala Harris waiting excitedly in the wings.  And – who can say – maybe Pelosi has her eye on the about-to-become-vacant VP slot.  Then, six months later, they pull a Cuomo and “encourage” Kamala to resign (because – whatever) and we end up with President Pelosi.

    President Pelosi?  Pass the barf bag.

    Nate,

    I wouldn't worry about that. If the Oligarchy dumps Hair Sniffer, Kamala moves up the ladder and vacates the VP slot. In order for anyone to replace her, it has to be approved by the Senate. Since the Senate is split 50:50 ... and the tie-breaker no longer exists, do you really think the Red Team would approve anybody who could fill the position and then take their power away?

    The Oligarchy is stuck until the 2022 elections with Biden. By January 3, 2023, his usefulness has ended. His usefulness only matters if the Senate remains 50:50 tied after the next election. The chances of that happening with a third of the seats up for election is pretty slim. Either the electronic ballot boxes get stuffed with fraudulent votes and the result is overwhelmingly Blue ... or the majority of Blue Senators get associated with Biden's incompetence and get drummed out of office.

    Either way, the Oligarchy will do everything they can for the next 16+ months to keep Biden from appearing to be dead or incompetent enough to be ousted.

    Grover

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 6:58am

    #8
    VTGothic

    VTGothic

    Status: Gold Member

    Joined: Jan 05 2020

    Posts: 440

    5

    Supply chain problems, de-globalization, and less new oil supply are setting up a longer-run commodities bull run – Lyn Alden

    Macro analyst/investment advisor Lyn Alden just released her August Investment Newsletter. Here is my pick of her article's money quotes:

    Supply Chain Problems

    If the current inflation was purely based on supply chain issues, which are causing issues globally, then we should see similar rates of inflation across the developed world. But we don’t see that. The United States has noticeably higher inflation than our various developed peers.

    …Large fiscal stimulus in the United States, monetized by the Federal Reserve, helped boost demand for goods and services in the US but can’t fix supply shortages, and so … the US is a net exporter of services, but a huge importer of goods. When you combine services and goods together we have a net trade deficit, but it’s in the goods area that we are really weak.  This is important, because starting from the initial March 2020 lockdowns and fiscal stimulus, the US and many other places had an explosive difference in goods consumption vs services consumption.... Since the US has de-industrialized and exported our physical goods supply chains to the rest of the world more-so than most other advanced nations, that makes us particularly vulnerable to this type of supply chain disruption in goods.

    Globalization's Decline

    …With the United States and China entering a period of global competition, even a Cold War type of environment, the United States in particular as well as other countries have to think about their global supply chain exposure more than they used to. …In other words, after multiple decades of extreme globalization, we seem to be on a longer run towards re-shoring portions of our supply chains, which takes a very long time. This can improve resiliency, but can also increase prices, because the reshuffling of those interconnected supply chains isn’t cheap.

    In this sense, the 2010s and 2020s are shaping up to be directionally similar to the 1930s and 1940s in terms of de-globalization, which mirrors the fact that the fiscal and monetary policies are similar to that period as well.

    Tech (deflationary) vs. Oil (inflationary)

    Oil is the biggest commodity by far in terms of annual commodity revenue. … Decades with low inflation tend to be characterized by periods of commodity abundance, and decades of high inflation tend to be characterized by periods of commodity scarcity. For nearly a decade, commodities have been pretty cheap, and this has dis-incentivized companies from spending money to bring new supplies online.

    … Over the long run, we should indeed see tech companies outperform oil, because they are able to compound value. But it goes in massive cycles, with some long periods of oil outperformance as well. … Investors tend to overpay for tech stocks during times of commodity oversupply/cheapness.

    … My base case is that as we head deeper into the 2020s, with various supply chain problems, de-globalization, and less new oil supply coming online, that another longer-run commodity bull market is setting itself up. It won’t be a straight line, of course, and … this comes at a time when tech/growth stocks are very highly-valued by historical standards. Plus, the rate of margin growth may have peaked for the cycle…

    Conclusion and Strategy

    …This continues to be an environment where inflation is running higher than the prevailing interest rate that you can get on bank accounts or Treasuries. …This means that people’s cash money is gradually losing purchasing power. Inflation-adjusted interest rates haven’t been this negative since the 1970s. A consequence of this is that it pushes people further out on the risk spectrum…. People are historically quite overweight equity exposure at this time, for example.

    Basically, devaluing money encourages the formation of asset bubbles, but policymakers find themselves with little other choice due to the high debt levels that…have built up in the system.

    I continue to prefer good stocks and hard assets in this environment with a long-term view, but investors should be prepared for volatility along the way.

    https://www.lynalden.com/august-2021-newsletter/

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 7:58am

    Andy in the Sun

    Andy in the Sun

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    Andy in the Sun said:

    Great reference VT Gothic,

    this is a newsletter to keep for a while and to read fully.

    Everyone should pay attention to one chart  - almost at the end of the newsletter -> US Commodity Price Index, 10 Year rolling CAGR, 1815 - 2021.

    For all of my generation (the most here onboard) - that's where our pension/retirement insurance is!!!

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 9:08am

    Canuck21

    Canuck21

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    Joined: Aug 10 2020

    Posts: 1038

    1

    Chart

    Great chart, and it’s from Incrementum, a very solid source. Now we just have to hang on till 2045 to reap the benefits! Not sure what possible vax-caused mass depop would do to commodity demand though.

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 9:28am

    Nate

    Nate

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    3

    Lyn Alden

    For those who aren't familiar with Lyn Alden, Adam (at Wealthion) interviewed her.  She is super sharp.  Thanks for sharing VT.









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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 9:32am

    #12
    Andy in the Sun

    Andy in the Sun

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    0

    re: Chart

    @Canuck

    Well… I tend to believe that a potential vax-caused mass depop will even make the prognosis in this chart more likely. A depop will come along with a lot of chaos that will disrupt well established and fine-tuned supply chains.

    Transport chains in particular are labor intensive and in specific areas skill sensitive. Additionally, disruptions and hefty fluctuations in demand will disturb CAPEX flow. All that will reflect back into (safety) margins. That will make prices rise if not explode.

    And… look at the chart carefully – can you see that during all major wars/tension the curve went in to the upper band and even touched the upper limit. That should give us confidence.

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 9:47am

    Canuck21

    Canuck21

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    1

    Chart

    Thanks for the insights. And of course peak oil will be a huge factor too. I’ve been a big commodities fan since 2009 but as usual too early. It’ll be nice to finally say I told you so to a few people !

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 9:51am

    #14
    Andy in the Sun

    Andy in the Sun

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    Joined: May 28 2021

    Posts: 204

    9

    An add-on to commodities

    @Nate

    I like to add to Lyn’s portfolio something that Adam’s guests of the last week highlighted - a little farm/farmland assets/investments.

    A little farm not only gives you your own food, it can provide you with some little income. And even more!!! You have something to share with others in need that does not cost you an arm & a leg… but might help them.

    Everyone should remember, In times of chaos friends are most valuable – enemies you will get for free.

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 10:01am

    Canuck21

    Canuck21

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    6

    Friends

    My sister worked in Lebanon for a few years, which is the classic example of a barely functioning society. She said it functioned very largely on doing favours back and forth and the key was to build up a “bank” of favours owed.

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  • Mon, Aug 30, 2021 - 12:37pm

    davefairtex

    davefairtex

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    0

    red/blue dots

    The red/blue dots are where my code's projected trend change happens.  Red = down, blue = up.  Note: for entertainment purposes only.

     

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