Hang The Bankers http://www.hangthebankers.com Wed, 19 Aug 2015 05:12:01 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 ‘Independent’ GMO researcher received $25K grant from Monsanto http://www.hangthebankers.com/gmo-researcher-received-grant-monsanto/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/gmo-researcher-received-grant-monsanto/#comments Wed, 19 Aug 2015 05:12:01 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25851
In January of 2015, a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by Oakland organization U.S. Right to Know requested email records between academics, scientists, and representatives of Big Agriculture.

The FOIA requests were sent to 14 scientists at four public universities, requesting information on communications and email records.

The FOIA findings included communications of well-known, staunch proponents of GM crops like Kevin Folta, a professor and chairman of the Horticultural Sciences Department at the University of Gainesville, who received a $25,000 grant from Monsanto. The emails reveal the funds could “be used at [his] discretion in support of [his] research and outreach projects”.

About 4,600 pages of emails, among other recordswere obtained from Folta.

Kevin Folta Monsanto GMO

Emails obtained through the FOIA revealed that Kevin Folta received a $25,000 grant from Monsanto.

According to the communications, the ties between allegedly objective scientists and Big Agriculture run deep. According to Nature Magazine,

“The documents show that Monsanto paid for Folta’s travel to speak to US students, farmers, politicians and the media. Other industry contacts occasionally sent him suggested responses to common questions about GM organisms.”

While it’s not uncommon for scientists to receive corporate funding through grants, these revelations are troublesome because Folta is regularly sold to the public as an “independent” authority on GMOs. In fact, the biotech industry-funded site, GMOanswers.com — which seeks to dispel myths about the dangers of GM foods and pesticides — has still not disclosed Folta’s financial ties to Monsanto.

According to an article from Nature MagazineU.S. Right to Know is“probing what it sees as collusion between the agricultural biotechnology industry and academics who study science, economics and communication.”

In layman’s terms, the organization is made up of ordinary people who seek to make corruption transparent and obliterate illusions of objectivity.

Executive director of U.S. Right to Know, Gary Ruskin, said one of the reasons the organization made the requests is that “The agri-chemical industry has spent $100 million dollars in a massive public relations campaign.The public has the right to know the dynamics.”

It looks like the FOIA targets are doing everything they can to avoid revealing information. According to Wired, “Legal teams at the universities—Nebraska, University of Florida, UC Davis, and the University of Illinois—are currently evaluating the situation, but some scientists have already spoken out against the FOIA request.”

FOIA requests might be one of the greatest threats to corruption and revolving door politics, which explains why those who oppose transparency are doing everything they can to prevent them.

Kevin Folta GMO Monsanto

“Open records requests are increasingly being used to harass and intimidate scientists and other academic researchers, or to disrupt and delay their work,” a report from The Union of Concerned Scientists claims.

“Academic institutions and other involved parties need to be prepared to respond to these requests in a way that protects the privacy and academic freedom of researchers while complying with the law and respecting the public’s right to information.”

Kevin Folta did what he could to avoid blame, saying, “I’m just a teacher, trying to distill a controversial literature for the general public.”

“I turned over everything [requested by the FOIAs] immediately,” he said.

There is no such thing as objective science when a researcher receives tens of thousands of dollars from the GM producers themselves, then goes on to promote their financiers’ products. Corporate collusion between government bureaucracies and educational institutions has become a serious issue in the U.S. that has corrupted objectivity in nearly every sector of American life.

If there is corruption in our society that you wish to make transparent, you can file your own Freedom of Information Act request, just like U.S. Right to Know did.

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Chinese stock market plunges more than 6% http://www.hangthebankers.com/chinese-stock-market-plunges/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/chinese-stock-market-plunges/#comments Tue, 18 Aug 2015 12:15:23 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25847
Chinese stocks plunged on Tuesday as the yuan weakened against the dollar, reigniting fears that Beijing may be intent on a deeper devaluation of the currency despite the central bank’s comments that it sees no reason for a further slide.

Concerns that companies may pull more money out of China as the economy slows and speculation that the government may begin to scale back its massive support for the country’s stock markets also prompted investors to take profits after a run-up in prices over the last few weeks, traders said.

The Shanghai Composite Index closed down 6.1 per cent at 3,749.12 points in its biggest daily decline since July 27, snapping a three-day winning streak.

The CSI300 index of the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen fell 6.2 per cent at 3,825.41.

Chinese stock market crash markets red yuan

Volatility in both indexes spiked in the afternoon in what is becoming a mysteriously recurring pattern in China’s stock markets since Beijing stepped in to avert a full-blown price crash in early summer.

The yuan fell against the dollar on Tuesday despite a slightly stronger midpoint set by the central bank, and traders expect the currency to remain under downward pressure as the economy struggles.

The People’s Bank of China devalued the currency last week by nearly 2 per cent, triggering an avalanche of selling by investors who feared Beijing wanted to engineer a much sharper decline to support weak exports. The PBOC was later forced to step into the market and tell state banks to support the currency.

Shares of importers and firms with high US dollar-denominated debt have been under pressure along with Chinese airlines which face higher fuel bills following the devaluation.

The central bank made its biggest injection of funds into money markets in more than six months early on Tuesday, adding to worries that liquidity was tightening as investors moved more capital out of the country.

Minsheng Securities estimated 800 billion yuan ($125 billion) had flowed out in July and August alone.

Chinese men stock market crash

Investors have also grown more concerned that Beijing may begin to withdraw its unprecedented support for share prices.

China’s securities regulator said last Friday that the government will allow market forces to play a bigger role in determining stock prices, the first official signal from Beijing that it could be moderating its efforts to prop up its equity markets via state-backed financial institutions.

“The CSRC made it clear last week that the state will withdraw from regular market intervention to support share prices,” said a senior trader at a major Chinese brokerage in Shanghai.

“Because sentiment has been weak since the sharp fall that began in June, people believe the market itself cannot support current share price levels without the state’s support.”

Selling was broad based. The CSI 300 infrastructure index fell 8.4 per cent, the energy index dropped 6.1 per cent, and the real estate index tumbled 7.3 per cent despite data which showed Chinese home prices rose for the third month in a row in July.

READ ALSO: 8 signs that a global economic crisis is coming soon

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8 signs that a global economic crisis is coming soon http://www.hangthebankers.com/8-signs-global-economic-crisis-coming/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/8-signs-global-economic-crisis-coming/#comments Tue, 18 Aug 2015 03:34:06 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25830
When the banking crisis crippled global markets seven years ago, central bankers stepped in as lenders of last resort.

Profligate private-sector loans were moved on to the public-sector balance sheet and vast money-printing gave the global economy room to heal.

Time is now rapidly running out. From China to Brazil, the central banks have lost control and at the same time the global economy is grinding to a halt.

It is only a matter of time before stock markets collapse under the weight of their lofty expectations and record valuations.

The FTSE 100 has now erased its gains for the year, but there are signs things could get a whole lot worse.

1 – China slowdown

China was the great saviour of the world economy in 2008. The launching of an unprecedented stimulus package sparked an infrastructure investment boom. The voracious demand for commodities to fuel its construction boom dragged along oil- and resource-rich emerging markets.

The Chinese economy has now hit a brick wall. Economic growth has dipped below 7pc for the first time in a quarter of a century, according to official data. That probably means the real economy is far weaker.

China economic growth GDP chart

The People’s Bank of China has pursued several measures to boost the flagging economy. The rate of borrowing has been slashed during the past 12 months from 6pc to 4.85pc. Opting to devalue the currency was a last resort and signalled the great era of Chinese growth is rapidly approaching its endgame.

Data for exports showed an 8.9pc slump in July from the same period a year before. Analysts expected exports to fall only 0.3pc, so this was a huge miss.

The Chinese housing market is also in a perilous state. House prices have fallen sharply after decades of steady growth. For the millions who stored their wealth in property, it makes for unsettling times.

2 – Commodity collapse

The China slowdown has sent shock waves through commodity markets. The Bloomberg Global Commodity index, which tracks the prices of 22 commodity prices, fell to levels last seen at the beginning of this century.

Bloomberg commodity index chart

The oil price is the purest barometer of world growth as it is the fuel that drives nearly all industry and production around the globe.

Brent crude, the global benchmark for oil, has begun falling once again after a brief rally earlier in the year. It is now hovering above multi-year lows at about $50 per barrel.

Oil price tumbles chart

Iron ore is an essential raw material needed to feed China’s steel mills, and as such is a good gauge of the construction boom.

The benchmark iron ore price has fallen to $56 per tonne, less than half its $140 per tonne level in January 2014.

3 – Resource sector credit crisis

Billions of dollars in loans were raised on global capital markets to fund new mines and oil exploration that was only ever profitable at previous elevated prices.

With oil and metals prices having collapsed, many of these projects are now loss-making. The loans raised to back the projects are now under water and investors may never see any returns.

Oil & Gas mining sector debt raised chart

Nowhere has this been felt more acutely than shale oil and gas drilling in the US. Tumbling oil prices have squeezed the finances of US drillers. Two of the biggest issuers of junk bonds in the past five years, Chesapeake and California Resources, have seen the value of their bonds tumble as panic grips capital markets.

Cheaspeake bond price chart

As more debt needs refinancing in future years, there is a risk the contagion will spread rapidly.

4 – Dominoes begin to fall

The great props to the world economy are now beginning to fall. China is going into reverse. And the emerging markets that consumed so many of our products are crippled by currency devaluation. The famed Brics of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, to whom the West was supposed to pass on the torch of economic growth, are in varying states of disarray.

The central banks are rapidly losing control. The Chinese stock market has already crashed and disaster was only averted by the government buying billions of shares. Stock markets in Greece are in turmoil as the economy grinds to a halt and the country flirts with ejection from the eurozone.

Earlier this year, investors flocked to the safe-haven currency of the Swiss franc but as a €1.1 trillion quantitative easing programme devalued the euro, the Swiss central bank was forced to abandon its four-year peg to the euro.

5 – Credit markets roll over

As central banks run out of silver bullets then, credit markets are desperately seeking to reprice risk. The London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor), a guide to how worried UK banks are about lending to each other, has been steadily rising during the past 12 months. Part of this process is a healthy return to normal pricing of risk after six years of extraordinary monetary stimulus. However, as the essential transmission systems of lending between banks begin to take the strain, it is quite possible that six years of reliance on central banks for funds has left the credit system unable to cope.

London Interbank Offered Rate LIBOR rate chart

Credit investors are often far better at pricing risk than optimistic equity investors. In the US while the S&P 500 (orange line) continues to soar, the high yield debt market has already begun to fall sharply (white line).

S&P 500 orange white lines chart

6 – Interest rate shock

Interest rates have been held at emergency lows in the UK and US for around six years. The US is expected to move first, with rates starting to rise from today’s 0pc-0.25pc around the end of the year. Investors have already starting buying dollars in anticipation of a strengthening US currency. UK rate rises are expected to follow shortly after.

UK interest rate history chart

7 – Bull market third longest on record

The UK stock market is in its 77th month of a bull market, which began in March 2009. On only two other occasions in history has the market risen for longer. One is in the lead-up to the Great Crash in 1929 and the other before the bursting of the dotcom bubble in the early 2000s.

FTSE 10 past 25 years

UK markets have been a beneficiary of the huge balance-sheet expansion in the US. US monetary base, a measure of notes and coins in circulation plus reserves held at the central bank, has more than quadrupled from around $800m to more than $4 trillion since 2008. The stock market has been a direct beneficiary of this money and will struggle now that QE3 has ended.

8 – Overvalued US market

In the US, Professor Robert Shiller’s cyclically adjusted price earnings ratio – or Shiller CAPE – for the S&P 500 stands at 27.2, some 64pc above its historic average of 16.6. On only three occasions since 1882 has it been higher – in 1929, 2000 and 2007.

Shiller PE Ratio chart CAPE

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Ditching the dollar: Russia, China to create new gold market http://www.hangthebankers.com/ditch-dollar-russia-china-new-gold-market/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/ditch-dollar-russia-china-new-gold-market/#comments Mon, 17 Aug 2015 09:10:54 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25827
While key Western banks are artificially restraining gold prices to breathe life into the diluted and devalued dollar system, Russia, China and other emerging economies are involved in “the genial move” to establish an entirely different gold market, F. William Engdahl underscores.

Key central banks, particularly the Federal Reserve and Bank of England, and Western market players have long been accused of clandestine gold price manipulating aimed at preserving the dollar’s role “as world reserve currency primus,” American-German economic researcher and historian F. William Engdahl writes.

“The COMEX gold futures market in New York and the Over-the-Counter (OTC) trades cleared through the London Bullion Market Association do set prices which are followed most widely in the world. They are also markets dominated by a handful of huge players, the six London Bullion Market Association gold clearing banks — the corrupt JP MorganChase bank; the scandal-ridden UBS bank of Zurich; The Bank of Nova Scotia — ScotiaMocatta, the world’s oldest bullion bank which began as banker to the British East India Company, the group that ran the China Opium Wars; the scandal-ridden Deutsche Bank; the scandal-ridden Barclays Bank of London; HSBC of London, the house bank of the Mexican drug cartels; and the scandal and fraud-ridden Societe Generale of Paris,” Engdahl narrated.

Furthermore, Western banks are issuing numerous paper “gold-futures” and other speculative contracts which are in fact disconnected from real physical gold.

Gold bars China Russia

In a word, operations with the precious metal in London and New York are in questionable hands, the economic researcher noted.

The West’s ultimate goal is to preserve the dollar’s monopoly in the market thus breathing life into the US-led global financial system. But no one likes monopolists.

Predictably, the current state of affairs cannot satisfy rising economies, such as China, Russia and other emerging powers.

However, “rather than scream and cry ‘fraud’ at the owners of the COMEX/CME or the London Bullion Market Association Big Six clearing banks, these countries are involved in the genial move to create an entirely different gold market, one that not JP MorganChase or HSBC or Deutsche Bank control, but one that China, Russia and others of a like mind control,” Engdahl stressed.

This new approach is connected closely with the China-led New Silk Road project and the Shanghai-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).In May 2015 Beijing announced it had established a state-run gold investment fund, aiming to bolster China’s role in global gold trade. The new initiative is a part of China’s ambitious One Belt and One Road plan. The “Silk Road Gold Fund” will invest in mining projects in the regions along the New Silk Road encouraging central banks of its members to increase their holdings in the precious metal.

“As China has expressed it, the aim is to enable the Eurasian countries along the Silk Road to increase the gold backing of their currencies. That sounds very much like some clear-thinking and far-sighted governments are thinking of creating a stable group of gold backed currencies that would facilitate orderly trade free from Washington currency wars,” the economic researcher elaborated.

And Russia is actively cooperating with China in this field, he underscored, adding that just before the creation of China’s new gold fund the countries inked a deal to explore the gold reserves in Russia’s Magadan region.Over the past several years Russia has been rapidly replenishing its vaults with golden bullions. In accordance with official data, Russian physical gold reserves currently amounted to 1250.9 tons in June 2015.

Today Russia is considered the world’s third largest gold producer with 245 metric tons produced in 2014, while China produces over 450 tons a year.

“South Africa, also a member of the BRICS along with China and Russia, stands to add to the new energy surrounding a renaissance in gold as a support of solid, well-based currencies to replace the diluted and devalued dollar system,” the researcher stressed.

According to Engdahl, the New Economic Silk Road, integrated with Russia’s new Eurasian Economic Union, are more than just energy and railroad infrastructure: they are the central nervous system of the future largest and fastest-growing economic space on Earth.Interestingly enough, according to the ANZ Research report “East to El Dorado: Asia and the Future of Gold” the gold price may soar as high as $2,000 a troy ounce by 2025. ANZ Research underscored that gold, despite its current slump, remains both an investment and a defensive asset. The rise of emerging economies, such as China and India will facilitate the demand for gold investments.

“While most eyes are fixed on COMEX or the London Bullion Market Association listed daily gold price fix, the real worth of gold as a currency reserve and a standard of monetary soundness is growing in worth by the day,” Engdahl concluded adding that this trend is a real pain in the neck of the US Treasury, Federal Reserve and Wall Street.

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Australian state bans children who refuse vaccination from attending kindergarten http://www.hangthebankers.com/australia-bans-children-who-refuse-vaccination-from-kindergarten/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/australia-bans-children-who-refuse-vaccination-from-kindergarten/#comments Sun, 16 Aug 2015 09:15:10 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25822
Victorian pre-schoolers will be banned from attending child care or kindergarten unless they are vaccinated, under new ‘no jab, no play’ laws to be introduced by the State Government.

The new laws will be introduced within weeks and will come into effect on January 1.

“Vaccinations save lives,” Health Minister Jill Hennessy said.

“We are getting tough on this issue because it’s important that we start addressing things like a significant increase in whooping cough.

“We know the spread of things like measles is becoming more virulent.”

Ms Hennessey said there had been 1,000 more cases of whooping cough this year compared to last year.

Vaccines child being vaccinated

She said the matter was a community safety issue.

“It’s not just in the interests of an individual child, but all of us,” she said.

“Our aim is not to exclude kids from early childhood services. Our aim is to get people immunised and we’re going to use this as an incentive and a prompt.”

Vaccination rates plateaued

It followed moves by the Federal Government to strip social security payments from parents who do not immunise their children.

Conscientious objections would not be allowed and only those with a doctor’s certificate would be exempt.

“The science on this issue is really clear. Vaccinations save lives,” Ms Hennessey said.

“I pay no heed to those [who] go around putting mistruths out about vaccinations

“We know that it is absolutely essential to get your children vaccinated if you can and only if there are medical reasons as to why a child can’t be vaccinated will that be acceptable.”

Vaccination rates in Victoria have hovered around 92 per cent for a number of years but that number has plateaued.

“So we know we need to do more to lift it, bringing in ‘no jab, no play’ laws which we are hopeful will help lift those vaccination rates,” she said.

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Crisis spreads to China, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Sweden http://www.hangthebankers.com/crisis-spreads-to-china-australia-brazil-canada-sweden/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/crisis-spreads-to-china-australia-brazil-canada-sweden/#comments Sun, 16 Aug 2015 08:19:35 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25818
Earlier today, we posted an excerpt from IceCap Asset Management’s latest letter to investors focusing on the farce that is the Greek bailout #3.

Which can be summarized simply by the following table…

Greece debt bailout

… and Keith Dicker’s assessment which was that “for Greece, it’s mathematically impossible to repay its debt” and that the Greek “economy continues to plummet to deeper depths and is now -33% less than where it was in 2008.”

But the truth is that for all the endless drama, Dicker continues, “the Greek debt crisis isn’t THE crisis. Rather it is simply a symptom of a much larger global debt crisis.”

The problem is that the “larger global debt crisis” is finally metastasizing and spreading to more places, all of which are large enough that they can not be simply swept under the rug, like Greece.

IceCap’s Keith Dicker continues:

We’ve written before that governments all around the world have borrowed too much money and the weight of these debts are choking economic growth.

And to make matters worse – these very same governments and their central banks have implemented various plans that have only made matters worse.

Our view has not changed – the global debt crisis has escalated to a point where the government bond bubble has inflated itself to become the mother of all bubbles. It’s going to burst, and when it does it wont be pretty.

Financial crisis

Further evidence to support our view is as follows:

Canada – the collapse in oil and commodity markets has pushed the country into recession and the Canadian Dollar to decline to levels lower than that reached during the 2008 crisis.

Oil dependent provinces Alberta and Newfoundland remain in deep denial. Since everyone in these provinces have only ever experienced a booming oil market, many naively believe things will bounce back – and quickly.

Meanwhile, both Toronto and Vancouver housing markets also remain in denial as they continue to go gangbusters. Buyers today are likely buying at all-time highs.

And as we predicted last year, the Bank of Canada has cut (not raised) interest rates twice in the last 6 months.

We fully expect the Bank of Canada to eventually cut interest rates to 0% and start a money printing program as well. And for the stunner – NEGATIVE interest rates will not be that far behind.

Australia – Over the last 20 years, China has been viewed as the growth engine of the world, and justifiably so. With annual growth rates between 8% to 15%, China’s economy was literally eating every rock, stalk and barrel of practically every commodity in the world.

And naturally, any country or company that produced these commodities made a tonne of money – including Australia.

Today, China’s growth rate has slowed to about 3% which is a dramatic slow down compared to what it achieved in the past. This slowdown and China’s effort to even maintain these rates, will have significant repercussions around the world.

And the first up to bear the brunt of this slowdown is its closest supplier of raw materials – Australia.

With dark clouds on the economic horizon, the Australian government and central bank is doing everything possible to prevent the unpreventable recession.

Interest rates have been reduced to all-time historical lows, meanwhile the Australian Dollar has plummeted -25% over the last year. Yet – the negative outlook has not improved.

Brazil – Like Australia, Brazil has benefitted immensely from China’s growth. And now, also like Australia, it too is feeling the affects of the dramatic Chinese slowdown.

The economy has now declined for 12 consecutive months making it both the longest and deepest recession in 25 years.

But wait – it gets worse. Despite declining growth, inflation continues to soar higher causing interest rates to rise as well.

And if that wasn’t bad, also know that the Brazilian currency has fell off the cliff at -53%.

Sweden – Unlike Australia and Brazil, Sweden relies very little on China as a buyer of last resort. Yet, the Swedish economy is also not very hot these days.

In fact, instead of spectacular and dramatic declines in anything, it is doing the exact opposite – it just isn’t moving.

While Sweden isn’t in the Eurozone, it is smack dab next to it and that in itself is reason enough for the lack of growth. We’ve written before how the debt crisis in the Eurozone is acting like a giant, slow moving tornado that is sucking the life out of the economy and everything near by. And unfortunately for Sweden, it is very near by.

While economic growth in the Nordic state hasn’t declined, it hasn’t accelerated either – and this is what has many worried.

So worried, that the central bank shocked everyone not once but twice, by first announcing that they would begin to print money, and then when they announced that interest rates would be NEGATIVE.

These actions are so severe, that we need to repeat them:

1) MONEY PRINTING
2) NEGATIVE INTEREST RATES

It is hoped that these actions will cause people and companies to loosen their wallets and start spending again. Yet, what the government and the central bank doesn’t understand is that these actions will actually make the problem worse.

As the global economy continues to move as we expect, there is nothing Sweden can do to change what is coming – a global recession and a significantly weaker Krona.

China, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Sweden – it is beyond us how anyone can declare the crisis isn’t spreading. Be prepared – there are going to be lots of opportunities to both make and lose money.

But first, you have to recognize what is happening.

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China devalues its currency for three days straight http://www.hangthebankers.com/china-devalues-currency-three-days-straight/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/china-devalues-currency-three-days-straight/#comments Sat, 15 Aug 2015 12:39:05 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25814
From Filip Karinja, for Birch Gold Group

Former President George Bush is famous for once saying, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me… you can’t get fooled again.”

Most of us know that it’s supposed to end, “Fool me twice, shame on me.”

But what’s said when you get fooled a third time?

For example, what about this week, when China devalued their currency on Tuesday, swore up and down that it would be a one-time thing, but then proceeded to devalue the yuan the following two days straight?

Chinese yuan notes China

It’s just yet another example of the increasing ruthlessness we are seeing around the world from governments and central banks, who say one thing, but then do another.

The relative rise in the dollar’s value versus other currencies crushes our economy at home, as exports become expensive and money made abroad from our corporations loses value through the conversion rate.

Conversely, the drop in the yuan will harm everyday Chinese savers but help the nation’s export market, which shrank by 8.3% in June.

That drop in the export market comes on the back of the Chinese stock market tumbling 30% in just under 3 weeks – and had it not been for government intervention, the market could have fallen even further.

It’s for these reasons that an increasing number of citizens in China are turning to gold. They see that while their government is growing increasingly desperate to keep the economy going, they’re beginning to run out of options to prop it up.

Citizens in that nation are also seeing that when it comes to easily manipulated assets like currencies or stocks, the central planners can come in at any stage and manipulate the market any way they please – or even restrict your access to your cash.

But central planners can’t just print more gold.

The price of gold measured in yuan jumped 5.6% last week during the currency devaluation period. (And isn’t it strange timing that just before this move, they purchased 19 tons of gold – when prices were at recent lows?)

In the last few years, this trend has held true for other currencies that have lost value. For example, gold has recently soared against the Russian ruble. In addition, gold has also held its worth, while currency crisis spread through to other nations.

In recent years, the U.S. dollar has been strong relative to other currencies, so gold has not performed as well when measured in terms of the greenback. But when that changes – what then? Even John Kerry remarked this week that the days of the dollar being the premier currency of the world could be numbered.

The dollar is increasingly losing influence around the world and everyone knows it – so why be one of the people who get caught out?

Starting in 2007, we were all “fooled once” when the Federal Reserve unleashed massive rounds of money printing on the economy and devalued the dollar.

The next time they do it, it will be shame on you… if you sit on your hands and do nothing.

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Sick society: Kim Kardashian paid to promote prescription drugs http://www.hangthebankers.com/sick-society-kim-kardashian-paid-to-promote-prescription-drugs/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/sick-society-kim-kardashian-paid-to-promote-prescription-drugs/#comments Fri, 14 Aug 2015 05:58:27 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25809
The FDA sent Kim Kardashian a warning letter last week, demanding that she remove an Instagram post in which she endorsed a bottle of Diclegis morning sickness pills but failed to mention any of the potential side effects associated with the product.

Kardashian is a paid promoter of the product, which is made by Duchesnay USA. Her post “misleadingly fails to provide material information about the consequences that may result from the use of the drug and suggests that it is safer than has been demonstrated,” according to the FDA.

While most of the effects that she failed to mention are relatively benign — such as drowsiness and interactions with alcohol or “excitement, irritability and sedation” in infants who breast feed from women taking the drug — one neglected fact is actually quite important: it’s never been tested for use with hyperemesis gravidarum, the most severe form of morning sickness.

Faced with “FDA regulatory action, including seizure or injunction, without further notice,” Kardashian has since deleted the post, though not before it gained 434,000 likes.

Kim Kardashian instagram diclegis FDA prescription drugs

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Rich list: 80 people with more money than 1/2 of humanity http://www.hangthebankers.com/rich-list-people-with-more-money-half-of-humanity/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/rich-list-people-with-more-money-half-of-humanity/#comments Fri, 14 Aug 2015 05:03:01 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25804
Since the “financial repression,” the most powerful people have only gotten more powerful.

A 2013 Oxfam report found that 80 people had as much wealth as 1/2 of humanity, and a few months later Forbes said the number had dropped to 67.

Many of us asked who exactly these people are, and now the list has been released.

RANK NAME 2014 WEALTH (BILLIONS) COUNTRY SELF-MADE? SECTOR
1 Bill Gates $76 USA Tech
2 Carlos Slim Helu $72 Mexico Telecom
3 Amancio Ortega $64 Spain Retail
4 Warren Buffett $58 USA Finance
5 Larry Ellison $48 USA Tech
6 Charles Koch $40 USA Diversified
7 David Koch $40 USA Diversified
8 Sheldon Adelson $38 USA Entertainment
9 Christy Walton $37 USA Retail
10 Jim Walton $35 USA Retail
11 Liliane Bettencourt $35 France Product
12 Stefan Persson $34 Sweden Retail
13 Alice Walton $34 USA Retail
14 S. Robson Walton $34 USA Retail
15 Bernard Arnault $34 France Luxury
16 Michael Bloomberg $33 USA Finance
17 Larry Page $32 USA Tech
18 Jeff Bezos $32 USA Retail
19 Sergey Brin $32 USA Tech
20 Li Ka-shing $31 Hong Kong Diversified
21 Mark Zuckerberg $29 USA Tech
22 Michele Ferrero $27 Italy Food
23 Aliko Dangote $25 Nigeria Commodities
24 Karl Albrecht $25 Germany Retail
25 Carl Icahn $25 USA Finance
26 George Soros $23 USA Finance
27 David Thomson $23 Canada Media
28 Lui Che Woo $22 Hong Kong Entertainment
29 Dieter Schwarz $21 Germany Retail
30 Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaud $20 Saudi Arabia Finance
31 Forrest Mars Jr. $20 USA Food
32 Jacqueline Mars $20 USA Food
33 John Mars $20 USA Food
34 Jorge Paulo Lemann $20 Brazil Drinks
35 Lee Shau Kee $20 Hong Kong Diversified
36 Steve Ballmer $19 USA Tech
37 Theo Albrecht Jr. $19 Germany Retail
38 Leonardo Del Vecchio $19 Italy Luxury
39 Len Blavatnik $19 USA Diversified
40 Alisher Usmanov $19 Russia Extractives
41 Mukesh Ambani $19 India Extractives
42 Masayoshi Son $18 Japan Telecom
43 Michael Otto $18 Germany Retail
44 Phil Knight $18 USA Retail
45 Tadashi Yanai $18 Japan Retail
46 Gina Rinehart $18 Australia Extractives
47 Mikhail Fridman $18 Russia Extractives
48 Michael Dell $18 USA Tech
49 Susanne Klatten $17 Germany Cars
50 Abigail Johnson $17 USA Finance
51 Viktor Vekselberg $17 Russia Metals
52 Lakshmi Mittal $17 India Metals
53 Vladimir Lisin $17 Russia Transport
54 Cheng Yu-tung $16 Hong Kong Diversified
55 Joseph Safra $16 Brazil Finance
56 Paul Allen $16 USA Tech
57 Leonid Mikhelson $16 Russia Extractives
58 Anne Cox Chambers $16 USA Media
59 Francois Pinault $16 France Retail
60 Iris Fontbona $16 Chile Extractives
61 Azim Premji $15 India Tech
62 Mohammed Al Amoudi $15 Saudi Arabia Extractives
63 Gennady Timchenko $15 Russia Extractives
64 Wang Jianlin $15 China Real Estate
65 Charles Ergen $15 USA Telecom
66 Stefan Quandt $15 Germany Cars
67 Germán Larrea Mota Velasco $15 Mexico Extractives
68 Harold Hamm $15 USA Extractives
69 Ray Dalio $14 USA Finance
70 Donald Bren $14 USA Real Estate
71 Georg Schaeffler $14 Germany Product
72 Luis Carlos Sarmiento $14 Colombia Finance
73 Ronald Perelman $14 USA Finance
74 Laurene Powell Jobs $14 USA Entertainment
75 Serge Dassault $14 France Aviation
76 John Fredriksen $14 Cyprus Transport
77 Vagit Alekperov $14 Russia Extractives
78 John Paulson $14 USA Finance
79 Rupert Murdoch $14 USA Media
80 Ma Huateng $13 China Tech

These are the same people, very likely, keeping the “filter” on our representative democracy. Do you feel uncomfortable about the fact that many of these people have seen their wealth increase drastically while at the same time the middle class shrinks and “austerity” is demanded almost globally outside of Sweden and Norway.

It makes me feel uncomfortable that the political influence of these people have served to increase their wealth and weaken regulations, and I suggest we seek meaningful changes on a systemic level.

SOURCE

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British petition calls for Netanyahu to be arrested for war crimes http://www.hangthebankers.com/petition-netanyahu-arrest-war-crimes/ http://www.hangthebankers.com/petition-netanyahu-arrest-war-crimes/#comments Thu, 13 Aug 2015 14:24:59 +0000 http://www.hangthebankers.com/?p=25798
Thousands of U.K. residents have signed a petition demanding the arrest of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his war crimes against Gaza during last summer’s brutal offensive.

Given the large scale of support and attention, the U.K. government may be forced to publicly respond in the near future.

The petition, filed on the U.K. parliament petition website, was apparently inspired by an upcoming visit to London for meetings with the government.

“Under international law he should be arrested for war crimes upon arrival in the UK for the massacre of over 2000 civilians in 2014,” wrote the petition’s author, Damian Moran.

Netanyahu war criminal

Much like petitions filed on the White House website, the government is required to respond once a certain number of people have signed. For parliament petitions, the government must respond when the petition reaches 10,000 signatures. As of Tuesday afternoon, the petition had achieved over 33,000 signatures and a note has been added to the petition’s page: “Waiting for 2 days for a government response.” If the petition garners 100,000 signatures, it will be “considered for debate in parliament.”

Last summer, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge, a bloody war against Gaza that killed about 2,300 Palestinians, the vast majority of whom were civilians, including over 500 children. The attack also devastated Gaza’s infrastructure, and left about 500,000 people displaced or homeless. These war crimes and others, like Israel’s recent attack on the Freedom Flotilla, which sought to bring medical aid and solar panels to the Port of Gaza, have given rise to increased calls for Israel to be tried before the International Criminal Court.

Regardless of the outcome of the petition, Netanyahu cannot be arrested in the United Kingdom because diplomatic immunity laws prevent diplomats and sitting politicians from being prosecuted for crimes in foreign countries. However, according to a report from the Jerusalem Post published on Tuesday, some former Israeli officials have been at risk of arrest thanks to pro-Palestinian activists in the U.K.:

“Earlier this year, Israeli diplomats scrambled to secure immunity for former IDF chief and defense minister Shaul Mofaz just prior to his trip to London for a defense conference.

Israeli television reported that Mofaz was at risk of being detained on possible war crimes charges since Israeli authorities had tried and failed to secure diplomatic immunity for him on his trip.”

This tactic has become more difficult since a change in British law made four years ago:

“The law previously allowed private complaints of war crimes to be lodged against military personnel even if they were not British citizens and the alleged crimes were committed elsewhere. High profile targets in recent years have included former foreign minister Tzipi Livni and former defense minister Ehud Barak.”

SOURCE

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