First over the last 38 years, long-term interest rates have steadily declined from nearly 20% all the way to 0%. This is important, because as long-term interest rates decline steadily – bond market returns increase steadily. This trend has reversed, and so too will the investment experience for everyone investing in the global bond market.
Second, the debt super cycle borrowing binge was all enabled by unchallenged, free wheeling governments fueled by low interest rates on borrowed money.
If Blackwater returns, it would be the return of a private security contractor that was banned from Iraq, but re-branded and never really went away. By 2016 Blackwater had been re-named and restructured several times, and was known at the time as Constellis Group, when it was purchased by the Apollo Holdings Group. Reuters reported earlier this year that Apollo had put Constellis up for sale, but in June the sale was put on hold.
Current and former Sears and Kmart employees are befuddled, frustrated, and furious as the company sets out to provide tens of millions of dollars in financial incentives for higher-ups to stay on board amid bankruptcy. If the company hits certain financial goals, 19 executives will split $8.4 million in bonuses over the next six months, and 315 senior-level employees will split the remaining $16.9 million, according to the Chicago Tribune.
The Economic Road Ahead (GE Christenson)
Inflate or die! Richard Russell understood the need for monetary inflation long ago. Deflation in an economy addicted to and overwhelmed by debt creates disaster! Central banks will do almost everything to avoid widespread deflation. They will continually inflate the currency supply.
Free markets have not existed within the global economy on a large scale for at least the past 100 years. The rise of central banking has eroded all vestiges of freedom in production and trade. Crony capitalism with its focus on corporate power and monopoly has nothing to do with free markets, despite the arguments of rather naive socialists who blame “free markets” for the problems of the world. If you ever hear anyone making this claim, I suggest you remind them that corporations and their advantages are a creation of governments.
Currently, able-bodied adults ages 18-49 without children are required to work 20 hours a week to maintain their SNAP benefits. The House bill would have raised the age of recipients subject to work requirements from 49 to 59 and required parents with children older than 6 to work or participate in job training. The House measure also sought to limit circumstances under which families that qualify for other poverty programs can automatically be eligible for SNAP.
US adults wider, not taller (LesPhelps)
CDC records date to the early 1960s, when the average man was a little over 5 feet, 8 inches tall and weighed 166 pounds. Now, men are almost 1 inch taller and more than 30 pounds heavier. But today’s average height of 5-foot-9 is about a tenth of an inch shorter than a decade ago.
The average woman in the early 1960s was 5-foot-3 and 140 pounds. Now, women are a half-inch taller and about 30 pounds heavier, on average. The average height is about the same as it was a decade earlier: 5-foot-4.
At stake is a fast-growing market for gadgets with virtual assistants. An estimated two-thirds of U.S. smart-speaker customers, about 43 million people, use Amazon’s Echo devices, according to research firm eMarketer. It is a lead the company wants to maintain over the Google Home from Alphabet Inc and the HomePod from Apple Inc.
The new study focused on the “epigenome,” or chemical modifications to DNA that turn genes “on” or “off.” These modifications do not change the DNA sequence, but instead affect how cells “read” genes. One example of an epigenetic change is DNA methylation, the addition of a methyl group, or a “chemical cap,” to part of the DNA molecule. This modification prevents certain genes from being expressed.
At Tinker, landlord Balfour Beatty had to replace water lines in each house and fix the systemic plumbing failures just six years after the houses were built. The company and the Air Force also inspected the rooms that housed heating, ventilation and air-conditioning equipment, and found that half of the homes had mold or water damage, Reuters reported.
My retirement was mostly voluntary. Premature, but there is some solace in having a choice. Unlike many dairy farmers, I didn’t retire bankrupt. But for my wife and me, having to sell our herd was a sign — of the economic death not just of rural America but also of a way of life. It is nothing short of heartbreaking to walk through our barn and know that those stalls will remain empty; knowing that our losses reflect the greater damage inflicted on entire regions is worse.
“Australia is already experiencing climate change now and there are impacts being experienced or felt across many communities and across many sectors,” said Helen Cleugh, the director of the CSIRO’s climate science centre.
An Upheaval at the Ends of the World (John J.)
Emily Osborne, a scientist who leads Arctic research at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, repeated this warning while speaking at a major geoscience conference on Tuesday. “The Arctic is experiencing the most unprecedented transition in human history,” she said.
Gold & Silver
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