… but global retail sales just posted a massive -16% drop in the past month, after dropping 9% a year ago and another 12% in 2013, this was the biggest annual drop since early 2010. As the chart below shows, CAT has now suffered a record 35 months, or nearly 3 years, of consecutive declining annual retail sales – something unprecedented in company history, and set to surpass the “only” 19 months of decling during the great financial crisis by a factor of two!
This Company’s Stockpiling Gold — And You Should Too (Tiffany B.)
And to be clear, Overstock owns physical metal, stored in a secure, offsite location. Management is wise enough to avoid the toxic junk known as gold exchange-traded funds (ETF). Paper gold will prove that it’s worth about as much as paper in a true crisis. When gold prices move unexpectedly higher, the market for all the gold IOUs and swaps and various financially engineered gold transactions face their own potential crisis that will cause havoc among ETF owners.
Baltic Dry Shipping Index Drops to All-Time Low (sand_puppy)
The Baltic Dry Index, a measure of shipping rates for everything from coal to ore to grains, fell to 504 points on Thursday, the lowest data from the London-based Baltic Exchange going back to 1985. Among the causes of shipowners’ pain is slowing economic growth in China, which is translating into weakening demand for imported iron ore that’s used to make the steel.
Even after the Paris attacks, an elaborate false flag operation that saw well over a hundred innocent civilians brutally murdered by the hands of ISIS-linked NATO patsies (and apparently unwilling patsies), the French government is holding to the nonsensical line that Bashar al-Assad, the number one enemy of ISIS, must step down and relinquish power.
Rand Paul: “Look where ISIS gets its weapons from” (goldrunner1)
Right now ISIS has a billion dollars’ worth of U.S. Humvees, they have a billion dollars in cash they stole from us and they pay their soldiers with but they have anti-tank weapons and missiles they fire from the shoulder that were basically given to people in the Syrian civil war and taken by ISIS.
The Koch intelligence agency (richcabot)
The competitive intelligence team has gathered on-the-ground intelligence from liberal groups’ canvassing events in an effort to assess the technology and techniques of field efforts to boost Democrats, according to the sources. And they say the team utilizes high-tech tactics to track the movements of liberal organizers, including culling geo-data embedded in their social media posts.
Terrible TPP Clauses Explained in Plain English (richcabot)
Without mass education on this subject, it is unlikely that such massive protests can derail this TPP deal. Given the amount of time, money and energy the multinationals have sunk into the negotiation of this agreement, it’s not going down without a fight.
UnitedHealth suggests Obamacare is being gamed (richcabot)
But there was another factor behind the lowered outlook from the nation’s biggest health insurer: people signing up after the open-enrollment period that have higher claims. Or, less charitably—people are gaming Obamacare.
Instead, its sole effect will be to put the taxpayers in the business of highly leveraged Wall Street deal making. That is, it will fund what amounts to apartment company LBOs being undertaken by the largest players in the private equity world including Barry Sternlicht’s Starwood Capital Group, Steve Schwarzman’s Blackstone Group and John Grayken’s Lone Star Fund.
As more nations seek to upgrade their transportation networks, China expects that the Belt and Road Initiative will increase its exports of high-speed rail technologies and related products.
Globally, the rail transit market is likely to grow 3.3% annually in the next five years, reported Economic Information Daily. Demand for vehicle equipment is projected to reach 53 billion to 61 billion euros.
Gresham’s law is an economic principle that states ‘when a government overvalues one type of money and undervalues another, the undervalued money will leave the country or disappear from circulation into hoards, while the overvalued money will flood into circulation.’
Gold & Silver
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