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Gordon T Long

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Sultans of Swap: Smoking Guns!

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Sultans of Swap: The Sting!

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Sultans of Swap: The Get Away!

 

 

ALSO

SULTANS OF SWAP: Explaining $605 Trillion in Derivatives!

 

SULTANS OF SWAP: Fearing the Gearing!

 

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SULTANS OF SWAP: Gold Swaps Signal the Roadmap Ahead

 

SLIDE REFERENCE PAGE: Shadow Banking

 

The news rocked the global gold market when an almost obscure line item in the back of a 216 page document released by an equally obscure organization was recently unearthed. Thrust into the unwanted glare of the spotlight, the little publicized Bank of International Settlements (BIS) is discovered to have accepted 349 metric tons of gold in a $14B swap. Why? With whom? For what duration? How long has this been going on? This raises many questions and as usual with all $617T of murky unregulated swaps, we are given zero answers. It is none of our business!

Considering the US taxpayer is bearing the burden of $13T in lending, spending and guarantees for the financial crisis, and an additional $600B of swaps from the US Federal Reserve to stem the European Sovereign Debt crisis, some feel that more transparency is merited. It is particularly disconcerting, since the crisis was a direct result of unsound banking practices and possibly even felonious behavior. The arrogance and lack of public accountability of the entire banking industry blatantly demonstrates why gold manipulation, which came to the fore in recent CFTC hearings, has been able to operate so effectively for so long. It operates above the law or more specifically above sovereign law in the un-policed off-shore, off-balance sheet zone of international waters.

Since President Richard Nixon took the US off the Gold standard in 1971, transparency regarding anything to do with gold sales, leasing, storage or swaps is as tightly guarded by governments as the unaudited gold holdings of Fort Knox. Before we delve into answering what this swap may be all about and what it possibly means to gold investors, we need to start with the most obvious question and one that few seem to ask. Who is this Bank of International Settlements and who controls it?

READ MORE

 

 

EXTEND & PRETEND: Stage I Comes

to an End!


The Dog Ate my Report Card

 

Both came to an end at the same time: the administration’s policy to Extend & Pretend has run out of time as has the patience of the US electorate with the government’s Keynesian economic policy responses. Desperate last gasp attempts are to be fully expected, but any chance of success is rapidly diminishing.

Before we can identify what needs to be done, what the administration is likely to do and how we can preserve and protect our wealth through it, we need to first determine where we are going wrong. Surprisingly, no one has assessed the results of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act 2009 (ARRA) which was this administration’s cornerstone program to place the US back on the post financial crisis road to recovery.

We can safely conclude either:

1-    The administration completely under estimated the extent of the economic crisis, even though we were well into it when the ARRA was introduced.

2-    The administration was unable to secure the actually required stimulus amount which was likely four to five times that approved.

3-    The administration failed to implement the program in a timely manner.

4-    The administration failed to diagnose the problem correctly and that in fact it is a structural problem versus a cyclical and liquidity problem, as they still insist it to be.

I personally believe it is all four of the above.

READ MORE

 

POPULAR ARTICLES:

SULTANS OF SWAP: BP Potentially More Devastating then Lehman!

 

EXTEND & PRETEND - Manufacturing a Minsky Melt-Up

 

EXTEND & PRETEND: A Guide to the Road Ahead


READER ROADMAP -  2010 TIPPING POINTS aid to positioning COMMENTARY

 

 

 

1

         

SOVEREIGN DEBT PIIGS

EU BANKING CRISIS
BOND BUBBLE

STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT

CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE
BANKING CRISIS II
RISK REVERSAL

COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

CREDIT CONTRACTION II

RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE - PHASE II
EXPIRATION FINANCIAL CRISIS PROGRAM
US FISCAL IMBALANCES
PENSION CRISIS
CHINA BUBBLE

TODAY'S TIPPING POINTS UPDATE

Last Update: 07/29/2010 08:00 PM

RED ALERT

AMBER ALERT

ACTIVITY

MONITOR

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POSTS:   THURSDAY 07-29-10

 

 

GEO-POLITICAL TENSIONS - ISRAEL / KOREA / IRAN

 

IRAN

Zero Hedge writes: if this is another Cheonan in the making, why pick a Japanese false flag scenario? With two US aircraft carriers in the vicinity, one would imagine we should have a pretty good picture of what really happened. Something tells us the official explanation of an "earthquake" as responsible for the boat damage just won't fly.

From Reuters:

A Japanese oil tanker damaged in an explosion in the Strait of Hormuz, one of the world's most important shipping lanes, was being diverted to a port in the UAE on Wednesday.  One of the 31 crew aboard was injured but no oil leaked from the M Star very large crude carrier (VLCC), according to the Japanese transport ministry.

It said an explosion occurred onboard at around 00:30 a.m. local time (2030 GMT Tuesday), but the cause was unclear.

"A crew member saw light on the horizon just before the explosion, so (ship owner Mitsui O.S.K.) believes there is a possibility it was caused by an outside attack," Japan's ministry said in a statement.

Oman's coastguard said there was no evidence of any attack on the tanker and instead cited an earthquake.  "The boat was hit by a tremor ...we have no information of an attack," an Omani coastguard official told Reuters.

The Strait of Hormuz remained open and it was "business as usual," an official from the Omani ministry of transport said.  Al Qaeda has threatened to attack shipping in the Strait of Hormuz, a route used by some 40 percent of the world's seaborne oil.

The ship was sailing under its own power toward Fujairah port in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to check the damage, a Mitsui O.S.K. Lines spokesman said.  The tanker bound for Chiba, near Tokyo, was carrying around 2.3 million barrels of Qatar Land and Abu Dhabi Lower Zakum crudes, industry sources said.  It carried 16 Filipino and 15 Indian crew members.

Any impact on the Asian spot crude market would be negligible and the tanker would have taken three weeks to arrive in Japan, traders said.
"This (event) won't stop the flow of crude, so there will be no impact on what is able to be bought," a Tokyo-based crude trader said.

Around 17 million barrels per day of oil flow via the Strait of Hormuz, and Middle East crude accounts for 90 percent of Japan's total imports

ISRAEL

 

KOREA 

N.Korea 'Sold Missiles to Taliban' Chosun

 

SOVEREIGN DEBT & CREDIT CRISIS

 

 

GREECE

Greek Villas Marked Down 45% as Crisis Hits Island Homes BL
Property declines have been smaller in Spain, Portugal and Italy.
Greece Just Threatened Striking Truck Drivers With Prison  BI

Greek Government Resorts To Wartime Emergency Act- Threatens Economy-Paralyzing Strikers With Prison Time ZH 

The Greek government has just issued a war-time emergency decree which forces striking truck drivers of fuel-tankers to get back to work or face criminal charges and up to five years of jail time (such an order issued to striking US unions would likely lead to civil war almost overnight). In other words, the Greek austerity plan is working so well, the country now finds itself resorting to wartime measures.

 

SPAIN / PORTUGAL

 

FRANCE

 

GERMANY

 

ITALY

How Italy's Permanent Crisis Saved It from the Downturn Spiegel

 

UK

King cautious on hope of speedy recovery  FT

  Nationwide says house prices down 0.5% in July FT

Tighter terms fail to crimp credit demand  FT

Stark warning of second recession in UK next year Independent
House prices to fall over next five years Telegraph

 

JAPAN

All ministries face 10% budget cut Japan Times

CHINA

 

USA

Now The Selloff Is Gathering Steam, As Beige Book Confirms Softening Economy  BI

June durable-goods orders fall sharply MW PDF File

Durable Goods Are Latest Economic Disappointment- June -1.0% Reading Is Largest Decline Since August 2009 (And Misses Consensus Of Course)  ZH

The June US durable goods order is the latest disappointment in a streak of poor macroeconomic data that started well over a month ago, and which will soon enough begin to impact not only GDP but also corporate earnings, as the macro double dip which is now firmly in place, makes it all too clear why companies have been miserly conserving cash. Durable Goods came at -1.0%, a major disappointment to consensus which had been hoping to a nice boost from the previous -1.1% number (now revised to -0.8%), and looking for a +1.0% reading. Better luck next time. Durables ex transportation came at -0.6% on expectations of 0.4. New orders of non-defense aircraft plunged by -25.6%, while the ever critical to the global economy Computers and Electronic products, dropped across both shipments (-4.1%) and New Orders (-1.9%). Overall, this was the largest Durable Orders decline since August 2009.

 

Federal Debt and the Risk of a Financial Crisis CBO 

"Federal Debt and the Risk of a Financial Crisis"  ZH

 

The dark blue dotted line is how bad things will be even if we let the Bush tax cuts sunset. But the light blue line is the disaster that will befall us if we don’t let them expire. We will be over 200% debt to GDP in twenty years. This terrible chart still does not tell us how bad things are. This information excludes the intergovernmental debt which is every bit as “Due and Payable” as the debt held by the Chinese. When you add in the extra 4.5T of IG debt we will be north of 150% Debt/GDP before 2020.

We will never make it to 150%. We will blow up in a spectacular fashion before we even get close to that mark. Some snippets from the CBO report: (full report here)

- Further increases in federal debt relative to the nation’s GDP almost certainly lie ahead if current policies remain in place.
- Unless policymakers restrain the growth of spending/increase revenues as a share of GDP, budget deficits will cause debt to rise to unsupportable levels.
- A growing level of federal debt would increase the probability of a sudden fiscal crisis, during which investors would lose confidence and the government would lose its ability to borrow at affordable rates.
- Having a small amount of debt outstanding gives policymakers the ability to borrow to address significant unexpected events such as recessions, financial crises, and wars.
- The government would need to undertake some combination of three actions:
   -restructuring its debt;
   -pursuing inflationary monetary policy;
   -adopting an austerity program of spending cuts and tax increases.
- Governments can attempt to change the terms of their existing debt—investors would demand a large interest premium on subsequent loans for many years.
- Foreign investors would face substantial losses.
- Higher inflation might appear to benefit the U.S. government. However, higher inflation would also increase the size of future budget deficits.

I am sure that Bernanke reads these reports. I wonder if he was struck by the comment, “higher inflation might appear to benefit the U.S. government”. He should be, that is his only policy at this point. Will he consider the CBO warning? I doubt it. Will Congress? It depends on the November elections.

 

EU BANKING CRISIS

 

 

BOND BUBBLE

Drip after drip of deflation data Pritchard

Is Austerity the Road to Ruin? GMO
GMO Montier 26Jul

 

Drip By Drip We're Being Chinese Water-Tortured By U.S. Deflation Data Ambrose Evan-Prichard

 

STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT

 

Los Angeles Investigates Voter Fraud In Suburb With Incredibly Well-Paid Officials  BI

 

Governor Schwarzenegger- All State Employees Must Take 3 Days Off Without Pay  BI

California institutes emergency employee furloughs  BI

 

More job and service cuts coming from strapped counties and cities 


CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE

 

 

HUNGARY

 

BANKING CRISIS II

 

 

Basel rules must recognise performance of covered bonds  FT

DODD FRANK ACT

 

RATING AGENCIES

Moody's Puts Too Big To Fail Banks On Outlook Negative Over Laughable Concerns Barney Frank May Just Let Them Fail  ZH

Ironically, Moody's whose own business model is now kaput courtesy of Donk (but managed to get a 6 month rolling SEC reprieve for the time being), has an unfavorable opinion on banks as a result of the just passed worst, and most corrupt legislature known to humankind. : "Moody's Investors Service today affirmed the long-term and short-term ratings of Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (Citi), and Wells Fargo (WFC) while at the same time changing the outlook to negative from stable on their ratings that currently receive ratings uplift as a result of Moody's assumption of systemic support (including their senior debt and deposit ratings). The outlook change is prompted by the recent passage of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank) -- a law that, over time, is expected to result in lower levels of government support for U.S. banks. "Since early 2009, Bank of America, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo's ratings have benefited from an unusual amount of support," said Sean Jones, Moody's Team Leader for North American Bank Ratings. This support has resulted in debt and deposit ratings that range from three to five notches higher than that indicated by the banks' unsupported, intrinsic financial strength. "The intent of Dodd-Frank is clearly to eliminate government -- i.e. taxpayer -- support to creditors," said Mr. Jones. To achieve this, the law attempts to strengthen the ability of regulators to resolve complex financial institutions, while at the same time strengthening the supervision and regulation of such institutions to reduce the likelihood that they will need to be resolved in the future."

 

 

RISK REVERSAL

 

 

COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

 

False Recovery in Commercial Real Estate ZH 

 

RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE - PHASE II

 

This Is Real- The White House Wants To Stimulate The Economy By Building More Cheap Housing  BI

 

Further U.S. house price fall may set banks back Hutchinson
Nevada's Economic Misery May Be America's Future HP
So many homes in Las Vegas have been foreclosed upon that banks rarely bother to hang a "For Sale" sign on the front lawn anymore...
Under Fire, Obama Admin Revises Housing Report HP
Mortgage Demand Dips on Rising Rates Reuters Apartment Rentals Surge

 

EXPIRATION FINANCIAL CRISIS PROGRAM

 

 

PENSION & ENTITLEMENTS CRISIS



CHRONIC UNEMPLOYMENT

 

Why The Public Hates Corporate America Right Now  BI

As the number of jobs in the U.S. have continued to decline, profits have soared above pre-recession levels.

From The Atlantic:

chart of the day, corporate profits vs jobs, 2007-2010


GOVERNMENT BACKSTOP INSURANCE

 

Fannie, Freddie overhaul moving ahead gingerly WP

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Still Too Big to Nail- Commentary by Jonathan Weil BL

 

 

 

CORPORATE BANKRUPTCIES

 

BP - British Petroleum

SULTANS OF SWAP: BP Potentially More Devastating then Lehman!

------------

 

This Is The Final Lesson Of BP  Robert Reich

 

BP May Sell Venezuela Oil Stakes to Russian TNK-BP Venture

BP Plc has told Venezuela’s state oil company it’s interested in selling stakes in three projects to its Russian venture, TNK-BP Holding, Petroleos de Venezuela SA Vice President Eulogio del Pino said



 

OTHER TIPPING POINT CATEGORIES NOT LISTED ABOVE

Hedge Funds Start-Ups Are Surging In Singapore Again Thanks To New Easy Regulations BI
Singapore continues to make itself more hedge fund-friendly. They've just clarified rules for small funds, whereby firms with less than $183 million under management and 30 qualified clients or less can operate with a license. In response, seven new hedge funds started up in May and June, according to Eurekahedge. This is a lot for two months given that only 26 hedge funds started up in Singapore during 2009.

Bloomberg:

Singapore’s hedge-fund industry grew to $43 billion at the end of 2009, from about $10 billion in 2005, according to the central bank. There were 320 hedge-fund managers in the city- state last year, compared with fewer than 20 before 2001, according to the MAS.

The number of hedge funds overseen by managers licensed by the Securities and Futures Commission in Hong Kong grew to 542, nearly five times the 2004 number, according to a September report from the regulator. Total assets managed by the industry stood at $55.3 billion as of March 31, 2009, representing six times the level in 2004, according to the SFC.

That's right, assets under management quadrupled in Singapore across a span of just four years, inclusive of a global financial crisis. London and New York are taking their dominance far too much for granted, even if they still have substantially larger hedge fund industries.

 

FLASH CRASH - HFT - DARK POOLS

 

MARKET WARNINGS

Albert Edwards Sees Stocks Under March Lows As Bond Yield Go Below 2%  ZH
Just in case there was any confusion which way SocGen's Albert Edwards may be leaning after the recent however many percent rally in the AUDJPY, sometimes known affectionately as stocks, it is hereby resolved: "My views on the outlook could not be clearer. They may be wrong, but at least they are clear. We still call for sub-2% 10y bond yields and equities below March 2009 lows." In other words, according to AE the market is well over 50% overvalued.

Jim Rogers Calls CNBC A Market PR Agency Whose Sole Purpose Is To Make Stocks Go Higher  ZH

 

I Thought Quantitative Easing Ended  ZH

Well, it’s options expiration week again and as usual Wall Street is gunning the market for all it’s worth. The bulls are falling for this shenanigan yet again, just as they did in June.  How’d that work out?

Tracking options week manipulations isn’t easy because there are no strict rules: the action all depends on where the market is and the number of outstanding contracts at given price points.

For instance, back in April investor bullishness was at extremes. Consequently, Wall Street ramped stocks first upwards (the usual predilection) to shank the puts… only to swiftly reverse the action in the middle of the week to shake out the calls.

 This whole system occurs courtesy of the Federal Reserve which openly and blatantly pumps the market on options expiration week. I’ve shown the below chart before. It’s staggering that no one in Congress or any of the regulators actually bother following up on this. How much more obvious does Bernanke need to get?

Options expiration weeks in bold

Week

Fed Action

July 8 2010

+$1 billion

July 1 2010

-$13 billion

June 24 2010

+$175 million

June 17 2010

+$12 billion

June 10 2010

-$4 billion

June 3 2010

+$2 billion

May 27 2010

-$16 billion

May 20 2010

+$14 billion

May 13 2010

+$10 billion

May 6 2010

-$4 billion

April 29 2010

-$1 billion

April 15 2010

+$31 billion

April 8 2010

+$420 million

April 1 2010

-$6 billion

March 25 2010

+$5 billion

March 17 2010

+$25 billion

March 11 2010

+$2 billion

March 4 2010

-$5 billion

February 25 2010

+$8 billion

February 18 2010

+$21 billion

February 11 2010

+$7 billion

February 4 2010

+2 billion

January 28 2010

-$4 billion

January 21 2010

-$39 billion

January 14 2010

+$56 billion

January 7 2010

+$1 billion

December 31 2009

-$1 billion

December 28 2009

+$35 million

December 17 2009

+$49 billion

December 10 2009

-$17 billion

December 3 2009

-$2 billion

November 27 2009

-$2 billion

November 19 2009

+$73 billion

November 12 2009

-$30 billion

November 5 2009

+$3 billion

October 29 2009

-$39 billion

October 22 2009

+$8 billion

October 15 2009

+$54 billion

October 8 2009

-$3 billion

October 1 2009

-$17 billion

September 24 2009

+$18 billion

September 17 2009

+$51 billion

September 10 2009

+$4 billion

September 3 2009

+$8 billion

August 27 2009

+$14 billion

August 20 2009

+$46 billion

August 13 2009

+$25 billion

August 6 2009

-$11 billion

July 30 2009

-$38 billion

July 23 2009

-$33 billion

July 16 2009

+$80 billion

 Notice that on non-expiration weeks the Fed either pumps the system slightly or, more commonly, removes money.

 However, once options expiration week hits, it’s PUMP time. To whit, the Fed has NOT had a single options expiration week in which it HASN’T pumped the market in nearly one year.

Moreover, note that despite the Fed’s Quantitative Easing Program ending in March, the Fed continues to pump $10+ billion into the system EVERY month when options expiration week rolls around.

Didn’t Bernanke say he wouldn’t continue buying assets from Wall Street after QE ended? More importantly, didn’t QE end? Why is the Fed still pumping money into this system?

And finally… how many times does this have to happen before someone in power actually notices it? Seriously, we’re talking about the Fed going 12 for 12 in the last year. And it’s not like the pump jobs are even subtle: they’re DRAMATICALLY larger that any other capital infusions the Fed makes during non-options expiration weeks.

David Rosenberg: Investors' renewed complacency could get shattered pretty quickly TTicker

 

GOLD MANIPULATION

 

 

VIDEO TO WATCH

 

 

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK
In a Financial Times op-ed dated July 25, 
Laurence Kotlikoff, economics professor at Boston University

"Due to the “labeling problem”--governments can describe receipts and payments in any way they like--we are essentially “in a fiscal wonderland of measurement without meaning.”


 


ZH - Zero Hedge - Business Insider, WSJ - Wall Street Journal, BL - Bloomberg, FT - Financial Times

 

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Gordon T Long is not a registered advisor and does not give investment advice. His comments are an expression of opinion only and should not be construed in any manner whatsoever as recommendations to buy or sell a stock, option, future, bond, commodity or any other financial instrument at any time. While he believes his statements to be true, they always depend on the reliability of his own credible sources. Of course, he recommends that you consult with a qualified investment advisor, one licensed by appropriate regulatory agencies in your legal jurisdiction, before making any investment decisions, and barring that, we encourage you confirm the facts on your own before making important investment commitments.

 

© Copyright 2010 Gordon T Long. The information herein was obtained from sources which Mr. Long believes reliable, but he does not guarantee its accuracy. None of the information, advertisements, website links, or any opinions expressed constitutes a solicitation of the purchase or sale of any securities or commodities. Please note that Mr. Long may already have invested or may from time to time invest in securities that are recommended or otherwise covered on this website. Mr. Long does not intend to disclose the extent of any current holdings or future transactions with respect to any particular security. You should consider this possibility before investing in any security based upon statements and information contained in any report, post, comment or recommendation you receive from him.

 

         

TODAY'S NEWS

THURSDAY

07-29-10

JULY
S M T W T F S
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

ARCHIVAL

SOVEREIGN DEBT PIIGS

EU BANKING CRISIS
BOND BUBBLE

STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT

CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE
BANKING CRISIS II
RISK REVERSAL

COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

CREDIT CONTRACTION II

RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE - PHASE II
EXPIRATION FINANCIAL CRISIS PROGRAM
US FISCAL IMBALANCES
PENSION CRISIS
CHINA BUBBLE
CHRONIC UNEMPLOYMENT
INTEREST PAYMENTS
US PUBLIC POLICY MISCUES
JAPAN DEBT DEFLATION SPIRAL
US RESERVE CURRENCY.
GOVERNMENT BACKSTOP INSURANCE
SHRINKING REVENUE GROWTH RATE
FINANCE & INSURANCE WRITE-DOWNS
RETAIL SALES
CORPORATE BANKRUPTCIES
US DOLLAR WEAKNESS
GLOBAL OUTPUT GAP
CONFIDENCE - SOCIAL UNREST
ENTITLEMENT CRISIS
IRAN NUCLEAR THREAT
OIL PRICE PRESSURES
FOOD PRICE PRESSURES
US STOCK MARKET VALUATIONS
PANDEMIC
US$ RESERVE CURRENCY
TERRORIST EVENT
NATURAL DISASTER

 

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Gordon T Long is not a registered advisor and does not give investment advice. His comments are an expression of opinion only and should not be construed in any manner whatsoever as recommendations to buy or sell a stock, option, future, bond, commodity or any other financial instrument at any time. While he believes his statements to be true, they always depend on the reliability of his own credible sources. Of course, we recommend that you consult with a qualified investment advisor, one licensed by appropriate regulatory agencies in your legal jurisdiction, before making any investment decisions, and barring that, we encourage you confirm the facts on your own before making important investment commitments.

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© Copyright 2010, Gordon T Long. The information herein was obtained from sources which the Gordon T Long. believes reliable, but we do not guarantee its accuracy. None of the information, advertisements, website links, or any opinions expressed constitutes a solicitation of the purchase or sale of any securities or commodities. Please note that the Gordon T Long. or its principals may already have invested or may from time to time invest in securities that are recommended or otherwise covered on this website. Gordon T Long does not intend to disclose the extent of any current holdings or future transactions with respect to any particular security. You should consider this possibility before investing in any security based upon statements and information contained in any report, post, comment or recommendation you receive from us.