Implode-Explode Heavy Industries news feed http://implode-explode.com/ Tracking the many faces of the global credit implosion. en-us iehi-feed-60305 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 18:52:41 GMT New legislation proposes to "bail in" Social Security http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-26_NewlegislationproposestobailinSocialSecurity.html Even Social Security knows that they're bankrupt and unable to keep their promises to taxpayers.... Well, the government has figured out a solution. And it's genius. Two weeks ago a new bill was introduced on the floor of Congress...

It's called the SAVE UP Accounts Act, which stands for... . . . "Secure, Accessible, Valuable, Efficient Universal Pension Accounts Act"... the bill is slapping a 2% wage tax on employers. Funny thing, employers are already paying 6.2% to Social Security. So an additional 2% tax effectively constitutes a 32% proportional increase.

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And yet the best solution these people can come up with is to raise your taxes, steal more money, and establish a brand new government-run retirement fund. Their logic is unbelievable: "If at first you don't succeed, keep trying the same loser tactics.''

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iehi-feed-60304 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 17:44:29 GMT Miami Judge Throws Out Bitcoin Money Laundering Case http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-26_MiamiJudgeThrowsOutBitcoinMoneyLaunderingCase.html iehi-feed-60303 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 16:57:34 GMT Home Prices in 20 U.S. Cities Rose Less Than Forecast in May http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-26_HomePricesin20USCitiesRoseLessThanForecastinMay.html iehi-feed-60302 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 16:55:09 GMT Consumer Confidence in U.S. Little Changed Near Five-Month High; Down For The Future http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-26_ConsumerConfidenceinUSLittleChangedNearFiveMonthHighDownForTheFu.html iehi-feed-60301 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 04:05:42 GMT Grant Williams on Peak Credit, Oil (Demand), and Gold (Supply); Trump and The Money Printing Endgame (Matterhorn Interview) http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-26_GrantWilliamsonPeakCreditOilDemandandGoldSupplyTrumpandTheMoneyP.html Donald Trump is the self-professed king of debt, which is very apropos for the United States right now... He's come out and said, "No, no, no. We'll never have to default because we'll just print the money". This, to me, is something I've been waiting for, for quite some time now, and this is the fact that central banks have been able to print an extraordinary amount of money over the last eight years with optically no bad side effects. The inflation hasn't shown up that people were warning about price in the money printing game going. And my fear was always that that would embolden politicians who didn't really understand any of the nuance of this; they heard there was money printing going on, they were waiting for the bad effects to happen, they haven't seen them, so they think that this money printing thing works.

... Politicians don't understand these things for the most part. They're complicated ideas and they don't have demonstrable outcomes, the wheels that get set in motion when you do things like go to negative interest rates and print money start spinning very slowly and you don't really see what comes out of the machine for an indeterminate amount of time. We haven't seen it yet, but we will. There are no free lunches, but the very fact that the political class has seen this happen without any obvious ill effects has emboldened them and Trump... He thinks he understands debt and he will have no qualms about going deeper into debt.

At some point, however, the question of faith in the finances of the US Government, faith in the quality of the dollar are going to be raised again by the market in general, and when that time comes, it's very hard to see how there is a solution to calm any nervousness that people have around the dollar without some significant pain being felt. There is a storm coming. There is no two ways about it, and I think if people pay attention, you will have heard recently some really significant names starting to express the fears they have. Guys like Carl Icahn, guys like Stan Druckenmiller have been very outspoken about how concerned they are for what's happening. And if you listen to those things carefully and you understand that these guys are some of the smartest investors in the world, if guys like that are getting out of equities, getting into gold, getting into cash, there are very good reasons for that, and the average investor in the street should be listening to that and trying to understand why the smartest investors in the world are thinking that way because it's extremely important to try and understand.

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iehi-feed-60300 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 03:45:21 GMT Hillary Clinton Is In Deep Trouble: "Hordes Of Wall Street Executives" Descend Upon Philly http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_HillaryClintonIsInDeepTroubleHordesOfWallStreetExecutivesDescend.html iehi-feed-60299 Tue, 26 Jul 2016 03:35:31 GMT Miami judge: "Bitcoin not money", Overturns laundering conviction http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_MiamijudgeBitcoinnotmoneyOverturnslaunderingconviction.html Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Teresa Mary Pooler ruled that Bitcoin was not backed by any government or bank, and was not "tangible wealth" and "cannot be hidden under a mattress like cash and gold bars."

"The court is not an expert in economics; however, it is very clear, even to someone with limited knowledge in the area, the Bitcoin has a long way to go before it the equivalent of money," Pooler wrote in an eight-page order. The judge also wrote that Florida law -- which says someone can be charged with money laundering if they engage in a financial transaction that will "promote" illegal activity -- is way too vague to apply to Bitcoin.

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In Espinoza's case, Miami Beach detectives found him through a Bitcoin exchange site, LocalBitcoins.com, and told him they were going to use the currency to purchase stolen credit-card numbers.

The detectives met with Espinoza, 32, three times in person: on Lincoln Road, at an ice cream shop and in a hotel room.

Espinoza was arrested along with another man, Pascal Reid, who pleaded guilty to acting as an unlicensed money broker and was sentenced to probation. Under his unusual plea deal, he agreed to teach law enforcement about Bitcoin.

At a hearing in May, a defense expert, Barry University economics professor Charles Evans, testified that Bitcoin was not actually money... At a hearing in May, a defense expert, Barry University economics professor Charles Evans, testified that Bitcoin was not actually money.

It's not necessarily a good thing for bitcoin not to be considered money. It seems like the court had to rely on some pretty questionable logic to come to the conclusion that bitcoin wasn't "money" (given that it is a store of value, medium of exchange, and unit of account). On the other hand, states have been moving for a while to a de facto position where anything other than fiat currency isn't considered by them to be "money" (having abandoned gold/silver money and gold-backed money a while ago), and there's a kind of "fairness" to that (i.e., think "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's"...) At any rate, anti-money laundering laws are insanely vague and over-broad, so this is probably a good result on that point alone. That is particularly evident here where this was a case of entrapment for a fictitious transaction that would actually not have led to any illegal activities -- the cops had to make a big show of divulging that they planned to do something illegal to get the requisite intent to launder money for an illegal activity. But in the wild, real criminals aren't announcing their intentions in marquee letters to third parties who have no need to know them -- revealing this case as in fact an "intimidation op" against those who would dare to use virtual currencies in a direct, more private manner.

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iehi-feed-60297 Mon, 25 Jul 2016 19:17:30 GMT Risks to U.S. Financial Stability Increase After Brexit: FSOC Report http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_RiskstoUSFinancialStabilityIncreaseAfterBrexitFSOCReport.html The U.K. decision to split from the 28-member bloc "surprised financial markets and was a negative shock to investor confidence," said Richard Berner, director of the Office of Financial Research, the research arm of the Financial Stability Oversight Council. He said the vote ushers in "months or years of uncertainty" over rules tied to the U.K.'s investment, financing and trade relations with Europe and the rest of the world.

Despite the ability of U.S. markets to recover from the initial shock of a market selloff, persistent concerns remain as the U.K. decides "if, how and when" to leave the EU, Mr. Berner said in a briefing with reporters. Possible spillover effects, he said, could jolt the broader financial system, including U.S. banks and nonbanks such as life insurers and broker-dealers.

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iehi-feed-60295 Mon, 25 Jul 2016 17:21:38 GMT IceCap Asks What Happens When The Bond Bubble Finally Pops http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_IceCapAsksWhatHappensWhenTheBondBubbleFinallyPops.html iehi-feed-60294 Mon, 25 Jul 2016 17:18:13 GMT Leaked DNC emails reveal the inner workings of the party's finance operation http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_LeakedDNCemailsrevealtheinnerworkingsofthepartysfinanceoperation.html iehi-feed-60293 Mon, 25 Jul 2016 15:25:01 GMT "Putin's Useful Idiots" = Anyone Who Disagrees With The Establishment http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_PutinsUsefulIdiotsAnyoneWhoDisagreesWithTheEstablishment.html iehi-feed-60289 Mon, 25 Jul 2016 14:18:14 GMT Inequality: the nexus of wealth and debt | Coppola http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-25_InequalitythenexusofwealthanddebtCoppola.html Debt jubilee seems an attractive idea. Why not just write off all the debts, wipe the slate clean and start again?... even if the very rich could be soaked, there is a bigger problem. The rise of the middle class means that a majority now own some wealth. And they will not easily give it up. Middle class wealth owners fear loss far more than the very rich. And with reason. For them, a fall of -- say -- 30% in the value of their house is a considerable hit to their net worth, as argued by Atif Mian & Amir Sufi in their book House of Debt. It can completely wreck their plans

If we are serious about reducing wealth inequality, we could think about very high taxes on top incomes, and perhaps wealth taxes. And if we are serious about reducing income inequality -- from which wealth inequality ultimately stems -- we could think about a universal basic income coupled with a land value tax and a progressive income tax system. If we want to break the cycle of wealth inequality down the generations, we could impose very high inheritance taxes, perhaps as much as 100%, on unproductive assets such as residential property. And if we really want to end the dominance of debt in our monetary system, perhaps we should be looking at forms of money that are not backed by debt.

Coppola ends up focusing on the reform of the monetary system mentioned at the end. We agree... and its funny how no one seems to take note of the fact that, during the best exemplar period of Western civilization -- the post-WWII period in the US -- incomes were much more equal. This is irrespective of total wealth (of course, the Gini coefficient was much lower), it's that pre-tax income was more equal. In other words, progressive taxation was never responsible for income equality -- it must have been something else. And that "something else" was a less biased monetary system: hard asset backing, and lack of Federal reserve craziness in intervening to tilt access to capital to the rich...

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iehi-feed-60288 Sat, 23 Jul 2016 17:09:36 GMT Munich, Turkey, Baton Rouge, Nice, Brexit, Trump: It's all connected http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-23_MunichTurkeyBatonRougeNiceBrexitTrumpItsallconnected.html Those cheering Brexit in the U.K., and welcoming a state of emergency in Turkey, were the ships that were supposed to be lifted by the rising tide of globalization, a promise that proved cruelly incorrect. They are now finding satisfaction in defeating their ruling classes, the people who believed those countries, and the world, were theirs to rule.

It's the same live wire that connects an Islamic State-inspired attack in Europe to a racially motivated shooting rampage in the U.S. The perpetrators are -- almost always -- those who felt they have very little left to lose in their lives. The cause they choose is almost a footnote to their act of anarchy.

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iehi-feed-60284 Sat, 23 Jul 2016 14:46:52 GMT Once-expanding EU prepares to contract for the first time in its history http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-23_OnceexpandingEUpreparestocontractforthefirsttimeinitshistory.html iehi-feed-60283 Sat, 23 Jul 2016 00:49:14 GMT Pension Funds Are Underwater And Taxpayers Along http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-22_PensionFundsAreUnderwaterAndTaxpayersAlong.html iehi-feed-60280 Sat, 23 Jul 2016 00:37:35 GMT Japan joins China in opening a physical gold exchange, Amidst Japan Retail "Gold Rush" http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-22_JapanjoinsChinainopeningaphysicalgoldexchangeAmidstJapanRetailGo.html The Tokyo Commodities Exchange (TOCOM) is joining with the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) to become the second major physical gold market in Asia.  Beginning on July 25, the TOCOM will begin deliveries for spot contracts, and is the only gold exchange accepted for futures contracts in Japan.

Since Japanese bonds fell into negative yields, investors and consumers have been buying physical gold at incredible rates.  And now that their market will have an official gold exchange like the one that opened in Shanghai last year, the precious metal will become even more liquid and draw more customers into gold.

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iehi-feed-60279 Sat, 23 Jul 2016 00:32:15 GMT Denmark Faces ‘Out of Control' Housing Market http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-22_DenmarkFacesOutofControlHousingMarket.html Denmark's biggest mortgage bank is warning there's a risk the housing market may get "out of control," especially around cities, as long-term negative interest rates make borrowers complacent.

"To be concrete, there is a danger that Danes go blind to the risk of rates ever rising again," Tore Stramer, chief analyst at Nykredit in Copenhagen, said in an e-mail. "That raises the risk of a major housing price decline, when rates at some point or other start to rise again."

...

With no other country on the planet having experienced negative rates longer than Denmark, the distortions the policy is wreaking may provide a preview of what other economies face should they go down a similar path. Danes can get short-term mortgages at negative interest rates, and pay less to borrow for 30 years than the U.S. government.

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iehi-feed-60277 Fri, 22 Jul 2016 17:27:48 GMT What Is Straw Buyer Fraud And Occupancy Fraud? http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-22_WhatIsStrawBuyerFraudAndOccupancyFraud.html iehi-feed-60276 Fri, 22 Jul 2016 00:08:17 GMT Toga! Toga! Toga! - Jared Dillon http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-21_TogaTogaTogaJaredDillon.html Both candidates for [U.S.] president have increasingly grandiose visions for the sorts of things government should do, and I don't see any scenario in 2017 where the deficit doesn't widen sharply.

... the debt problem is most acute in Japan, obviously, where debt to GDP is now about 240%. Japan was insolvent at a debt-to-GDP ratio of 120%, so the rest is just gravy... What if the Ministry of Finance simply defaults to the BOJ?... This is in fact being seriously considered... Think about it: back when we started doing QE, people were freaking out about what would happen when the Fed sold bonds back into the market. That was never going to happen--that was never the intent at all.

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So if debt doesn't matter and we're going to build roads and trains and bridges to nowhere, it means that shorting this market is a huge waste of time. It will end badly someday, but keep in mind that people have been predicting disaster for the last 45 years, when Nixon took us off gold. We could have 15 more years of this crap... The obvious trade here is gold...''

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iehi-feed-60274 Thu, 21 Jul 2016 23:05:45 GMT PulteGroup soars on activist deal, buybacks http://implode-explode.com/viewnews/2016-07-21_PulteGroupsoarsonactivistdealbuybacks.html PulteGroup got a big boost from a strong quarterly report and saw shareholders drive the stock up after news that it struck a deal with activist investor Paul Singer's Elliott Management.

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As the housing sector was battered in the global financial crisis, Pulte stock suffered and never regained losses. The company's shares are down more than 30 percent from the beginning of 2007, after hitting an all time high of more than $40 a share in 2005 and after paring gains in 2008, never touched those highs again.

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