Recent posts

Emerging Markets: What has Changed

Moody's raised India's sovereign debt rating for the first time since 2004 by a notch to Baa2. Nigerian officials are on a global roadshow to support plans to issue its longest-dated Eurobonds ever. The head of South Africa’s budget office resigned.

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Deepening Crisis In Hyper-inflationary Venezuela and Zimbabwe Show Why Physical Gold Is Ultimate Protection

Deepening Crisis In Hyper-inflationary Venezuela and Zimbabwe. Real inflation in Zimbabwe is 313 percent annually and 112 percent on a monthly basis. Venezuela's new 100,000-bolivar note is worth less oday thehan USD 2.50. Maduro announces plans to eliminate all physical cash. Gold rises in response to ongoing crises.

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Swiss HSBC settles French tax fraud dispute

With a payment of €300 million (CHF350 million), the Swiss subsidiary of British bank HSBC has settled its tax fraud dispute with the French authorities. Investigations by the French government revealed that many French taxpayers had hidden their assets with help from HSBC’s private bank.

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What Central Banks Have Done Is What They’re Actually Good At

As a natural progression from the analysis of one historical bond “bubble” to the latest, it’s statements like the one below that ironically help it continue. One primary manifestation of low Treasury rates is the deepening mistrust constantly fomented in markets by the media equivalent of the boy who cries recovery.

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Business Cycles and Inflation – Part I

Incrementum Advisory Board Meeting Q4 2017 – Special Guest Ben Hunt, Author and Editor of Epsilon Theory. The quarterly meeting of the Incrementum Fund’s Advisory Board took place on October 10 and we had the great pleasure to be joined by special guest Ben Hunt this time, who is probably known to many of our readers as the main author and editor of Epsilon Theory.

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Switzerland asked to aid Mauritian inquiry into Basel-based Dufry

Switzerland’s federal prosecutor’s office is handling a request for mutual assistance in an investigation involving the Basel-based duty-free group Dufry. The request was sent by the government of Mauritius, which according to reports in two Swiss newspapers is looking into the details of an exclusive agreement reached between Dufry and two Mauritian airports.

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Swiss Top Global Wealth Ranking

The average fortune of a Swiss adult is $537,600 (CHF528,000), according to the 2017 Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report. Switzerland continues to top the Credit Suisse global list for wealth per adult, followed by Australia ($402,600), the United States ($388,600) and New Zealand ($337,400).

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UK Debt Crisis Is Here – Consumer Spending, Employment and Sterling Fall While Inflation Takes Off

UK debt crisis is here – consumer spending, employment and sterling fall while inflation takes off. Personal debt crisis coming to fore – litigation cases go beyond 2008 levels. October consumer spending fell by 2% in October, the fastest year-on-year decline in four years. Britons ‘face expensive Christmas dinner’ as food price inflation soars. Gold investors buying physical gold due to precarious UK and US outlook

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Is This Why Productivity Has Tanked and Wealth Inequality Has Soared?

Needless but highly profitable forced-upgrades are the bread and butter of the tech industry. One of the enduring mysteries in conventional economics (along with why wages for the bottom 95% have stagnated) is the recent decline in productivity gains (see chart).

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Globally Synchronized Downside Risks

Oil prices were riding high after several weeks of steady, significant gains. It’s never really clear what it is that might actually move markets in the short run, whether for crude it was Saudi Arabia’s escalating activities or other geopolitical concerns. Behind those, the idea of “globally synchronized growth” that is supposedly occurring for the first time since before the Great “Recession” while it may not have pushed oil investors to buy...

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Swiss Labour Force Survey in 3rd quarter 2017: labour supply: 1.0% increase in number of employed persons; unemployment rate based on ILO definition at 5.0%

The number of employed persons in Switzerland rose by 1.0% between the 3rd quarters of 2016 and 2017. During the same period, the unemployment rate as defined by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) declined from 5.1% to 5.0%. The EU's unemployment rate decreased from 8.2% to 7.3%. These are some of the results of the Swiss Labour Force Survey (SLFS) conducted by the Federal Statistical Office (FSO).

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FX Daily, November 16: Euro Extends Pullback

After rising to its best level since October 20, the euro reversed direction yesterday and has extended its pullback today. The unexpected tick up in US core CPI and better than expected retail sales may have helped spur the euro losses after three cent run-up over the past several sessions. There bearish candlestick (shooting star) leaves the late euro longs in weak hands.

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Saudi Billionaires Scramble To Move Cash Offshore, Escape Asset Freeze

Over the weekend, Saudi King Salman shocked the world by abruptly announcing the arrests of 11 senior princes and some 38 ministers, including Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, the world’s sixty-first richest man and the largest shareholder in Citi, News Corp. and Twitter.

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Protect Your Savings With Gold: ECB Propose End To Deposit Protection

Protect Your Savings With Gold: ECB Propose End To Deposit Protection. New ECB paper proposes ‘covered deposits’ should be replaced to allow for more flexibility. Fear covered deposits may lead to a run on the banks. Savers should be reminded that a bank’s word is never its bond and to reduce counterparty exposure. Physical gold enable savers to stay out of banking system and reduce exposure to bail-ins

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Forget the Bogus Republican “Reform”: Here’s What Real Tax Reform Would Look Like

The point is to end the current system in which billionaires get all the privileges and financial benefits of owning assets in the U.S. but don't pay taxes that are proportional to the benefits they extract. As has been widely noted, the Republicans' proposed "tax reform" is not only just more BAU (business as usual, i.e. cut taxes for the wealthy), it's also not real reform. At best, it's just another iteration of D.C. policy tweaks packaged for...

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What President Trump and the West Can Learn from China

Expensive Politics. Instead of a demonstration of its overwhelming military might intended to intimidate tiny North Korea and pressure China to lean on its defiant communist neighbor, President Trump and the West should try to learn a few things from China.

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FX Daily, November 15: Dollar Slides

The euro and yen are extending their gains, casting a pall over the US dollar. The euro is extending its advance into a sixth consecutive session, which is the longest streak since May. It is approaching last month's highs in the $1.1860-$1.1880 area. As was the case yesterday, a consolidative tone in Asia was followed by strong buying in the European morning. There does not appear to be a fresh fundamental driver.

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Weekly Technical Analysis: 13/11/2017 – USDCHF, USDJPY, EURUSD, GBPUSD, EURGBP

USDJPY, EURUSD, GBPUSD, EURGBP

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Precious Metals Supply and Demand

Keith Weiner’s weekly look on Gold. Gold and silver prices, Gold-Silver Price Ratio, Gold basis and co-basis and the dollar price, Silver basis and co-basis and the dollar price.

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Credit Suisse Fined $135 million for Malpractices

Credit Suisse bank has been ordered to pay a fine of $135 million (CHF134.5 million) to the US authorities after an enquiry into the Swiss bank’s practices in setting foreign exchange rates. The figure was reached in a consultation between both parties.

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Swiss justice minister calls for commodities crackdown

Following revelations in the so-called “Paradise Papers” of questionable deals done by Swiss-based commodities companies in Africa, Switzerland’s justice minister has said that the country – historically hands-off in regulating the sector – needs new legislation to force those companies to play by the rules.

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The Fetid Swamp of Tax Reform

The likelihood that either party will ever drain the fetid swamp of corruption that is our tax code is zero, because it's far too profitable for politicos to operate their auction for tax favors. To understand the U.S. tax code and the endless charade of tax reform, we have to start with four distasteful realities: 1. Ours is not a representational democracy, it's a political auction in which wealth casts the votes that count.

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Swiss Producer and Import Price Index in October 2017: +1.2 YoY, +0.5 MoM

The Producer and Import Price Index rose in October 2017 by 0.5% compared with the previous month, reaching 101.0 points (base December 2015 = 100). The rise is due in particular to higher prices for machinery, electrical equipment and metal products. Compared with October 2016, the price level of the whole range of domestic and imported products rose by 1.2%.

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FX Daily, November 14: Euro Rides High After German GDP

Sterling is trading in the lower end of yesterday's range and has been confined to about a quarter a cent on either side of $1.31. On the other hand, the euro has pushed a bit through GBP0.8950 to reach its best level since October 26. Sweden also reported softer than expected October inflation.

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Switzerland Less Attractive to European Migrants

Fewer people are moving to Switzerland from elsewhere in Europe. Between January and September this year, immigration from European Union states was down by 26%, compared to the same period last year. (RTS/swissinfo.chexternal link)

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China Gold Import Jan-Sep 777t. Who’s Supplying?

While the gold price is slowly crawling upward in the shadow of the current cryptocurrency boom, China continues to import huge tonnages of yellow metal. As usual, Chinese investors bought on the price dips in the past quarters, steadfastly accumulating for a rainy day.

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Where are Europe’s Fault Lines?

Beneath the surface of modern maps, numerous old fault lines still exist. A political earthquake or two might reveal the fractures for all to see. Correspondent Mark G. and I have long discussed the potential relevancy of old boundaries, alliances and structures in Europe's future alignments.Examples include the Holy Roman Empire and the Hanseatic League, among others.

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Consumer Credit Both Accelerating and Decelerating Toward The Same Thing

Federal Reserve revisions to the Consumer Credit series have created some discontinuities in the data. Changes were applied cumulatively to December 2015 alone, rather than revising downward the whole data series prior to that month. The Fed therefore estimates $3.531 trillion in outstanding consumer credit (seasonally-adjusted) in November 2015, and then just $3.417 trillion the following month.

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FX Daily, November 13: Sterling Trounced by Growing Political Challenges

The US dollar has begun the new week on firm footing, without the help of either higher interest rates or increased confidence that Congress will agree on a tax plan. Indeed, over the weekend the Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee was explicit that the Senate plan to repeal the federal tax break for state and local taxes will not find support in the House of Representative.

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