Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 5/21 - Greece Nears Debt Deal, OPEC Struggles To Keep Up

Thursday, May 21, 2015, 9:32 AM


Venezuela's Inflation Rate Is 200% and Credit Card Companies Are Cashing In (Jason B.)

The Purchase, New York-based company does, of course, still face the problem of getting profits out of a country that tightly controls its dwindling supply of dollars through a maze of foreign-exchange restrictions. Those controls have driven out other multinationals: Air Canada has stopped flying to the South American nation; consumer-products giant Clorox Co. pulled out too; and Ford Motor Co. wrote down the value of its local business to zero.

The Improbable in Service to the Insatiable (thc0655)

At the height of the British Empire, it is not clear that even the dowager Queen Victoria held that sort of whimsical power. This sort of individual discretion is more reminiscent of the barbarity of former ages, of pharaonic Egypt, of the Mongol hordes, or of the cults of the dark gods that fed on beating hearts torn from human sacrifices.

Such is the power of the modern religion of the markets, and with those who would displace any power greater than themselves to make way for the overheated imaginings of their restless wills and fancies.

Greece nears debt deal in May as money runs low (Jason B.)

While the leftist-led government hopes to be in a position to meet debt repayments and pay government workers and pensioners in June, it will opt for the latter if it faces a dilemma, its finance minister said.

Athens wants a deal to include a debt restructuring, a lower target for the primary surplus to take in more than it spends apart from debt interest payments, and a pledge to make no further cuts to pensions or wages.

An Insane Financial World (GE Christenson)

What if bail-ins occur, and the banks take your deposited funds to pay off creditors, such as other banks who bought or sold derivative contracts? (If the bail-in is announced late on a Friday and the banks are closed the next week for “restructuring” you will have no opportunity to remove your currency from the bank. In Cyprus the insiders and politically connected escaped with their funds while many other individuals and businesses discovered their accounts had been “bailed-in.”)

Global banks admit guilt in forex probe, fined nearly $6 billion (Dana T., Jason B.)

"The penalty all these banks will now pay is fitting, considering the long-running and egregious nature of their anticompetitive conduct," said U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch at a news conference in Washington.

Los Angeles' minimum wage on track to go up to $15 by 2020 (jdargis)

The vote was the latest show of organized labor’s clout at City Hall. During nearly a year of often emotional debate, labor leaders never gave ground on their central demand that the minimum wage rise to at least $15. The City Council ultimately favored that approach over Garcetti’s proposal to raise the minimum wage to $13.25 by 2017.

Workers Race to Clean Up Oil Spill on California Coast (jdargis)

A combination of soiled beaches and pungent stench of petroleum caused state parks officials to close Refugio State Beach and El Capitan State Beach, both popular campgrounds west of Santa Barbara, for the Memorial Day weekend.

OPEC Struggling To Keep Up The Pace In Oil Price War (Tom K.)

I will be first to admit that I thought oil prices short term would peak in $60s and $70s, but I never thought they would retest the lows. Why should they, if all the trends point to markets slowly rebalancing? In fact, there is growing evidence that not only are we slowly rebalancing but the world may actually be running short of oil. According to Reuters, Saudi Arabia has turned down requests from China for more oil, as they are using it for their own domestic refining needs. It goes on to quote: “[a]nother source with a Chinese refinery that takes Saudi oil said Saudi heavy crude was ‘a bit tight’ in May and June.” China was forced to turn to Russia, Oman, and other non-OPEC nations for their needed supply. Why would Saudi Arabia refuse to supply China unless oil was, in fact, tight?

Vortex Bladeless aims for lower-cost wind energy approach (Arthur Robey)

The structure, said Yanez, was caught up in aeroelastic coupling. Yanez and team worked on recreating similar conditions to lead to their development of a bladeless wind turbine. Instead of turning, the turbine oscillates, producing movement and displacement, said Yanez. "The system is based on the same principles as an alternator—electromagnetic induction." They multiply that movement and speed magnetically—without any gear assemblies or ball bearings. They turn the mechanical energy of the structure into electricity.

To fight bee decline, Obama proposes more land to feed bees (Jason B.)

Scientists say bees — crucial to pollinate many crops — have been hurt by a combination of declining nutrition, mites, disease, and pesticides. The federal plan is an "all hands on deck" strategy that calls on everyone from federal bureaucrats to citizens to do what they can to save bees, which provide more than $15 billion in value to the U.S. economy, according to White House science adviser John Holdren.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 5/20/15

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."


saxplayer00o1's picture
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Oil reclaims $60 level on prospects for stimulus boost

Oil reclaims $60 level on prospects for stimulus boost

rjs's picture
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Venezuela's Inflation Rate

the article on Venezuela's Inflation Rate makes this claim:

shopping with cash would require carrying around a brick-sized wad of 100-bolivar bills

you can look up their inflation rate anywhere (ie, http://www.tradingeconomics.com/venezuela/core-inflation-rate ) and find that it was around 30% pa from 2008 to 2012, dipped to 20% for a year, and has been running around 60% since...that means that a 100 bolivar bill that was worth roughly $150 in 2008 is worth about $15 now...so needing a brick sized wad to go shopping is a bit hyberbolic...

cmartenson's picture
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Another useless "explanation"

OMG, I am about to blow a gasket here.

The US stock ""market"" is hitting all time new highs, on ultra low volume, yet again, for which reason do we think?

  1. Is it the "relief" rally celebrating the fact that no bankers will go to jail, again, after committing serious felonies?
  2. Or is it the fact that yet another major oil spill is ruining a relatively pristine area, you know like the rallies we had after the illegal Iraqi war bombing started?

Either way, the US stock market only celebrates things that destroy something.  Perhaps its our faith in equal justice, or perhaps it's a vital ecosystem.  

Alternatively, somebody, somewhere, has their hand on the switch and they know that 'Americans' deserve a boost after a soul-crushing day reading the news and so they goose the markets to make everyone feel better.

Well, some more than others, obviously:

Mmmmmmm...the highest inequality SINCE RECORDS BEGAN.

Perhaps the stock ""market"" is celebrating that?

At any rate, oil prices, like everything else, are utterly and completely separated from anything fundamental.  Any accurate headline should read, "Oil breaches $60 on intense speculative hot money flows hitting the bid."

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Our idiotic government is going to "feed" the bees rather than do what Europe has started doing, banning neonicotinoids. It's pretty well settled that the major problem with bees is neonicotinoids and we're going to "feed" bees. Studies have shown that bees get addicted to neonicotinoids just like we get addicted to nicotine, they keep going back for more neonicotinoids until they die. Our politicians aren't going to do anything that might jeopardize their campaign donations from farmers and chemical companies. We definitely have the best government that money can buy.

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Arthur Robey
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Controling the Narritive


There is a dearth in music options over the airwaves, so when vacuous lyrics are foisted on listeners, they become captives under duress. It is scientifically proven that flexing the intellect can slow cognitive decline, but there has been a cultural shift away from stimulating thought in favor of homogenization and living for the moment, and empty radio content is both symptom and reinforcement of that trend. 


From a political standpoint, all this ‘dumbing down’ makes sense: indoctrination creates obedience. If music and culture focus on mindless diversion, and education lacks, well, education, then people lack the acuity necessary to question the absurdity of the system. Those who manage to liberate themselves from this mold and have the gumption to question official authority will find a cozy spot on the government’s watch list. 

Nope. Not funny at all.

Arthur Robey's picture
Arthur Robey
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And the Answer is


Here is your Friday night viewing.

And yes, there does seem to be yet another limit to our understanding. Make the easy assumption boys and girls - it is all a flickering light show . And all of it is put on for you. Just you.

Because you are the great prize.


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You hooked me, Arthur!

-Watching that was a fun ride! 

ian.k's picture
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Here is a really good article on America's inflation rate .http://www.financeandeconomics.org It seems to be a popular sport making fun of the socialists running Venezuela  ,not rjs,  but at least their government is concerned about the welfare of the people and does not have government departments whose whole reason for being is to manipulate statistics in order that the government can pretend it is performing well. As I am a New Zealander and  our currency has dropped relative to the $US lately what are the ramifications of 40% inflation over the last four years in USA,  for our inflation rate? Anybody. 

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Bankers Slave
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Poignant obsevation Arthur.

There is no getting away from it that the popular music scene is about delivering the message that "all is well, carry on with mindless consumption, self gratification and believe all that we tell you to believe"


Radio Bubblegum



Oliveoilguy's picture
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Best to write your own Music, Here is one.
Arthur Robey wrote:


There is a dearth in music options over the airwaves, so when vacuous lyrics are foisted on listeners, they become captives under duress. 

I agree that popular music is mindless. So I wrote One. "The Good Lord Gives and The Government Takes it Away". (Original Version by Web Pierce in 1975) This song is climbing the charts.  It has gone from 1 view on You tube to 27 views in 1 week. At that rate....who knows the future?

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