Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 2/20 - Oil Industry Faces Existential Crisis, A Novel Plan for Health Care

Saturday, February 20, 2016, 8:42 AM


Xiao Gang, China’s Top Securities Regulator, Ousted Over Market Tumult (jdargis)

He attracted significant criticism for allowing a speculative bubble to form, in which share prices more than doubled in a year. When it burst last summer, those shares gave up all of their gains, hurting millions of families who had borrowed heavily to buy stocks.

John McAfee: I'll decrypt the San Bernardino phone free of charge so Apple doesn't need to place a back door on its product (Adam L.)

This is a black day and the beginning of the end of the US as a world power. The government has ordered a disarmament of our already ancient cybersecurity and cyberdefense systems, and it is asking us to take a walk into that near horizon where cyberwar is unquestionably waiting, with nothing more than harsh words as a weapon and the hope that our enemies will take pity at our unarmed condition and treat us fairly.

Blistering sales pace and prices in Vancouver and Toronto prompt new concerns housing bubble will burst (Uncletommy)

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) reported Tuesday that sales of existing homes rose by eight per cent in January compared to a year ago, while the national average home price soared 17 per cent.

But the sales figures for Vancouver and Toronto drew the most notice from economists.

A Novel Plan for Health Care: Cutting Costs, Not Raising Them (Adam L.)

Health systems and insurers are closely watching Intermountain’s rollout. It has established itself as a leading health system by tracking and analyzing costs and the quality of patient care, allowing it to improve treatments and reduce unnecessary expenses.

Marc Faber on Cashless Society Insanity and Why Wall Street Hates Gold (GSW)

Gold has been rallying in dollar terms lately but it has done much better in terms of many other major fiat currencies. The U.S. dollar has been remarkably strong in the past year, although it’s finally showing some signs of weakness. What are you expecting over the coming year in the currency markets? Is the dollar going to head higher still or do you see it rolling over?

Fascinating Gold Charts With Hidden Trendlines (Taki T.)

We are currently in area 1, which is gold’s last chance. In other words, this is the area which has a last support line which could provide support for gold’s tactical correction in its secular bull market. Gold is currently moving very fast from support to resistance within area 1. In other words, nothing meaningful has changed with gold’s recent rally.

Could more electric cars mean greater fleet emissions and fuel consumption? (jdargis)

At the same time, the EPA has another set of standards for the amount of greenhouse gas emissions across a manufacturer's range (this is separate from the EPA fuel efficiency rating that new cars get, which also differs quite a bit from the CAFE numbers). Failing to meet these targets comes with a set of different consequences. OEMs that don't meet their CAFE target have to pay a fine ($5.50 per 0.1mpg per vehicle sold), which several car makers have historically chosen to accept as cheaper than the alternative. The EPA's emissions standards aren't quite as lenient, however; it's within the agency's power to revoke one's license to sell vehicles inside the US.

The Stressed-Out Oil Industry Faces an Existential Crisis (jdargis)

After watching prices crash through floor after floor in the worst slump for a generation, the industry is eager for answers. Insiders say it’s not too hard to visualize what markets might look like after the storm -- say five years down the line, when today’s cost-cutting creates a supply vacuum that will push up prices. But it’s what happens in the meantime that’s got them scratching their heads.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 2/19/16

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."


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Risking Nuclear War for Al Qaeda?

Risking Nuclear War for Al Qaeda? (Robert Parry)

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Arthur Robey
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The Death of Oil

And of a few false scientific theories. 

The value of whaling ships collapsed with the extinction of whales.

Could the market be factoring in The Rossi Effect?  You might dismiss cold fusion with a flip of the wrist. Others may bail. That the collapse of the velocity of money is happening does not preclude the Rossi Effect. 

Does it not strike one as odd that they are happening simultaneously? 

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Here's Why (And How) The Gov't Will "Borrow" Your Retirement

From Simon Black, http://Here's Why (And How) The Government Will "Borrow" Your Retirement Savings.

According to financial research firm ICI, total retirement assets in the Land of the Free now exceed $23 trillion.

$7.3 trillion of that is held in Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs).

That’s an appetizing figure, especially for a government that just passed $19 trillion in debt and is in pressing need of new funding sources.

Even when you account for all federal assets (like national parks and aircraft carriers), the government’s “net financial position” according to its own accounting is negative $17.7 trillion.

And that number doesn’t include unfunded Social Security entitlements, which the government estimates is another $42 trillion.


...if you think it’s inconceivable for the government to borrow your retirement savings, just consider the following:

1) Borrowing retirement funds is becoming a popular tactic.

Forced loans have been a common tactic of bankrupt governments throughout history.

Plus there’s recent precedent all over the world; Hungary, France, Ireland, and Poland are among many governments that have resorted to ‘borrowing’ public and private pension funds.

2) The US government has already done this with federal pension funds.

During the multiple debt ceiling fiascos since 2011, the Treasury Department resorted to “extraordinary measures” at least twice in order to continue funding the government.

What exactly were these extraordinary measures?

They dipped into federal retirement funds and borrowed what they needed to tide them over.

In fact, the debt ceiling debacles were only resolved because the Treasury Department had fully depleted available retirement funds.

3) They’ve been paving the way to borrow your retirement savings for a long time.

Two years ago the government launched a new initiative to ‘help Americans save for retirement.’

It’s called MyRA. And the idea is for people to invest retirement savings ‘in the safety and security of US government bonds’.

Since then they’ve gone on a marketing offensive involving the President, Treasury Secretary, and other prominent politicians.

(Most recently Nancy Pelosi published an Op-Ed in the San Francisco Chronicle a few days ago promoting the program.)

They’ve also proposed a number of legislative reforms to ‘encourage’ American businesses to sign their employees up for MyRA.

Just last week, Congress introduced the “Making Your Retirement Accessible”, or MyRA Act, which would charge a penalty to employers whose workers don’t have a retirement account.

The proposed penalty is $100. Per worker. Per day.

Imagine a small business with, say, 10 employees who don’t have retirement accounts. The penalty to Uncle Sam would be a whopping $30,000 PER MONTH.

There’s a word for this. It’s called extortion.

Obviously when facing a $30,000 monthly penalty, an employer will pick the easiest option.

Given the absurd amount of government regulation on the rest of the financial industry, MyRA is the fastest choice.

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Zero rates wrecked your savings? Relax on a $17000 footstool

Zero rates wrecked your savings? Relax on a $17000 footstool

Reuters-6 hours ago
From the United States to the 19-country euro zone, central banks have lowered interest rates to zero since the financial crisis started in 2007 and still haven't ...


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More from Ken Okeefe

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