Of particular importance to note is the frequency of consolidation during the 2008 Financial Crisis, when the Big Four were able to gobble up weaker competitors that were overexposed to subprime mortgages. Washington Mutual, Bear Stearns, Countrywide Financial, Merrill Lynch, and Wachovia were all acquired during this time under great duress.
The Big Four is not likely to be challenged anytime soon. In fact, the Federal Reserve has noted in a 2014 paper that the number of new bank charters has basically dropped to zero.
The shift in mind-set, made possible by President Obama’s decision last fall to cancel withdrawal plans, reflects the Afghan government’s vulnerability to continued militant assault and concern that terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda continue to build training camps whose effect could be felt far beyond the region, said senior military officials.
Something Snapped At The Comex (Aaron M.)
Until today, when in the latest update from the Comex vault, we learn that a whopping 201,345 ounces of Registered gold had been de-warranted at the owner’s request, and shifted into the Eligible category, reducing the total mount of Comex Registered gold by 73%, from 275K to just 74K overnight.
A Short History Of Paper Money (GE Christenson)
I saw a man pay for groceries last week with cash – long green – with no ill effects. Visa and Master Charge did not collect their usual skim from the transaction and the buyer and seller were unaffected. Imagine a world where money was honest, backed by something real, not the promises from bankers and politicians, could not be created by politicians or bankers, and where money was a reliable store of value! It won’t happen next month, but it could happen.
China to Move to Electronic Currency (Aaron M.)
The People’s Bank of China held a seminar yesterday to discuss the issuance of a digital currency. The Chinese central bank said issuing a digital currency would have positive implications as it would reduce the high printing and circulation costs of traditional cash notes, make economic transactions more convenient and transparent, reduce money laundering and tax evasion, and strengthen the central bank’s control over money supply and circulation. The Chinese central bank pledged to issue China’s own digital currency as early as possible.
Stock prices then rebounded to near their previous levels and all was forgotten…until the beginning of this year. The continuing rout in oil prices began to underline not only the weakness in the global economy, but also the unclear situation at major banks holding large energy-related loan portfolios. The Dallas Federal Reserve Bank was reported to have encouraged banks in its jurisdiction to forebear on energy loans. Essentially, the Dallas Fed was telling banks to ignore losses in their energy portfolios until further notice so as not to cause a panic. The reserve bank quickly denied any such guidance to member banks.
In Aljazeera’s Inside Story, 10/1/2016, titled “How much support will Saudi Arabia win against Iran?” the delicate relationship between the US, Saudi Arabia and Iran is discussed with 3 panellists. The moderator wanted answers in the context of “the US is almost at a tipping point, is almost energy independent..”
In addition to a news event at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, the Doomsday Clock also was unveiled by a panel at Stanford University in California featuring: Jerry Brown, Governor of the State of California; George P. Shultz, Thomas W. and Susan B. Ford distinguished fellow, Hoover Institution, and former U.S. Secretary of State; and William J. Perry, senior fellow, Freeman Spogli Institute, and former U.S. Secretary of Defense.
Russia May Ban Corn And Soybeans (richcabot)
The Russian agency says it notified US authorities on Monday to halt exports of corn contaminated with dry rot to Russia. The agency cites health reasons for the measures “especially in conditions of import replacement of quarantined goods.”
The offer by DWSD raises serious questions about whether Gov. Rick Snyder was lying when he insisted the water switch was motivated by saving money for Flint, which was under the control of a state emergency manager.
Seriously, though, please take this superstorm seriously. As meteorologist Paul Douglas notes, “The Washington D.C. office of the National Weather Service issued a Blizzard Watch for the first time since 1986.” Besides upwards of two feet of snow and high winds over a 36-hour period, coastal regions can also expect some record storm surges.
Gold & Silver
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