27 August 2016

The Deep State and the Unspeakable - Mike Lofgren

"The state within a state is hiding mostly in plain sight.

The pressure to conform to an authority figure or peer group can cause people to behave in shocking ways.

It is not too much to say that Wall Street may be the ultimate owner of the Deep State and its strategies, if for no other reason than that it has the money to reward government operatives with a second career that is lucrative beyond the dreams of avarice— certainly beyond the dreams of a salaried government employee.

The corridor between Manhattan and Washington is a well-trodden highway for the personalities we have all gotten to know in the period since the massive deregulation of Wall Street."

Mike Lofgren

"The unspeakable. What is this?

It is the emptiness of 'the end.' Not necessarily the end of the world, but a theological point of no return, a climax of absolute finality in refusal, in equivocation, in disorder, in absurdity, which can be broken open again to truth only by miracle, by the coming of God.

Those who are at present so eager to be reconciled with the world at any price must take care not to be reconciled with it under this particular aspect: as the nest of The Unspeakable. This is what too few are willing to see.

You are not big enough to accuse the whole age effectively, but let us say you are in dissent. You are in no position to issue commands, but you can speak words of hope.

Shall this be the substance of your message? Be human in this most inhuman of ages; guard the image of man for it is the image of God. You agree? Good. Then go with my blessing."

Thomas Merton, Raids on the Unspeakable

26 August 2016

Just Charts On the Wall Street 'Wash and Rinse' Day - Non-Farm Payrolls Next Week

The markets moved sharply lower in the late morning sparked by Stanley Fischer, who came out after Janet Yellen's relatively meek message, and delivered a strongly hawkish message pointing to a rate hike in September.

That was theater of the absurd of course, since a one and done 25 basis point rate hike does not mean a whole heck of a lot.

Although it does send an odd signal about the Dollar with the rest of the world in lowering even into negative rates.   I am sure this concerns Yellen, if not some of the other bank-centric governors.

But it did give Wall St a great cue to do a 'wash and rinse' on an otherwise sleepy day, and take the equity markets up, and then down, and then back around again.  The precious metals and most everything else seemed to go along for the ride.

Their crassness and hypocrisy seems to know no bounds.

I hope you just sat this one out, and avoided the whipsaw.

At least we have this phase of the nonsense behind us for now. And we are moving towards the end of Summer.

Next week is going to be heavy on economic data, including a Non-Farm Payrolls report which the Fed will most likely wish to use to justify their much sought after 25 basis point rate increase.

I think we will see a lot of the adults taking their last vacations for the Summer next week.  I am not sure how that might influence trading.

And we continue slouching towards what appears to be one of the least satisfying presidential elections in modern US history.

Have a pleasant weekend.

25 August 2016

Just Charts Ahead of Jackalope Janet At Jackson Hole

The equity markets are bouncing along support on the lower bound as they wait to hear what Chairman Yellen has to say about the Fed's perspective tomorrow and what else is said over the next few days at Jackson Hole.

As for gold and silver, they went down in honor of the option expiration on the Comex for the most part this week, and today is just the anti-climax.

Traders claim to be 'confused' about what the Fed is up to.  So for their benefit and yours, here is a brief cheatsheet.

The Fed is very close to the zero bound on their key interest rates.  They have been here for a very long time, with most of it proving fruitless at best, and increasing asset price inflation and income inequality for the most part.   And that goes double for any of their QE programs which just inflate specific financial assets even more directly.

The 'theory' here is that if you cram enough money into the banks and the wealthy, that some of it will fall through to the lesser beings in the real, as opposed to the financialized, economy.   It is not a new idea, not at all.

As J.K. Galbraith put it, “trickle-down theory - the less than elegant metaphor that if one feeds the horse enough oats, some will pass through to the road for the sparrows.”

The Fed would very much like to raise rates off this lower bound. Their reasons have nothing to do with the real economy or inflation. And when they make the case that they want to head off 'wage inflation' in particular I really think someone should just tell them to shut up.

We have had median real wage stagnation in the US for more than twenty years now. To act as though 'wage inflation' would be the most serious problem we might encounter, while the top ten percent have been just rolling in the profits thanks to deregulation and the Fed's absurd monetary catering to the banks, is beneath contempt.

That is just a fig leaf to cover their real objective.  The denizens of the Fed, who for the most part are as personally involved in the ups and downs of the real economy as a hydrangea, are inwardly looking and speaking to their own in an echo chamber of policy errors and warped theories, living the cost plus sinecure of professional bureaucrats.

What the Fed wants is to raise rates now, if they can pass the blush test in doing it AND not roil the financial markets of their masters, so that they will have some room in order to cut rates when their latest asset bubble comes apart.

So why are their differences of opinion amongst the Fed heads now? Why in particular does Janet Yellen feel reluctant to raise rates when such luminaries as Stanley Fischer say that recovery is here and its time to go?  Besides the theory that Janet is the globalists' designated patsy.

Not everyone passes the blush test as brazenly as others.  Indeed, it is hard to think of anything that might make some of our ruling elite, particularly on the political side of things, blush except in the most artificial, histrionic manner.  With some very rare exceptions these are not people exactly tormented by ethical considerations and their conscience when it comes to their personal advancement and advantage.

And so here we are.

Have a pleasant evening.

24 August 2016

Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Charts - Comex Option Expiration Tomorrow

It was hard to miss the bear raid on precious metals this morning. ZeroHedge notes it in detail here.

Bear raid is a softer way of saying blatant price manipulation using the 'Dr. Evil' trading strategy of dumping large amounts of contracts into the market off hours, sending a signal to the other wise guys that the game is afoot.

As a reminder there will be an option expiration on the Comex tomorrow.

The warehouses were quiet, and only gold is seeing 'deliveries' in size for now as noted below.

Have a pleasant evening.

SP 500 and NDX Futures Daily Charts - Stocks Wobble But Don't Fall Down (Yet)

Stocks wobbled a bit today.

It was the biggest single day down move in a while, but that says more about the relative lack of movement of stocks during the sleepy summer trade.

If stocks continue moving lower from here it might get more interesting for the bears.

But for now, this is just more fluctuation within a trading range.  It is more clearly seen on the NDX chart than on the SP 500.

Have a pleasant evening.

23 August 2016

Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Markets - Winding Roads

"These lies meet the truth,
This waiting I'll do;
Desire so true
This waiting I'll do."

Árstíðir, You Just Have To Know of Me

The big story this week for the precious metals is the Comex option expiration on the 25th for the September silver contract.

As Bill Murphy has observed recently, 'silver is the kryptonite of the precious metals cartel.'

The financiers are playing a long, but deadly game.

And after many a Summer, dies the swan.

Have a pleasant evening.