This Week in Barrons – 1-24-2016:
Cover of ‘The Economist’ in 1988 - Notice the Year on the Coin
Dear. Ms. Yellen:
The picture above is the January 1988 cover of the Economist magazine. The headline says: “Get Ready for a World Currency.” Beneath the bird (‘The Phoenix’) you see many nations currencies represented, but notice the DATE on that coin? It’s 2018.
To quote a passage from the article itself: ”THIRTY years from now, Americans, Japanese, Europeans, and people in many other rich countries, and some relatively poor ones will probably be paying for their shopping with the same currency. Prices will be quoted not in dollars, yen or D-marks but in, let's say, ‘The Phoenix’. Companies and shoppers will favor ‘The Phoenix’ because it will be more convenient than today's national currencies. The supply of Phoenix’s will be fixed by a new central bank, potentially descending from the IMF. Each country will use taxes and public spending to offset temporary falls in specific currency demand, but it would have to borrow rather than print money to finance each of their budget deficits. With no recourse to inflation, governments and their creditors would be forced to judge their borrowing and lending plans more carefully than they do today. The Phoenix would probably start as a cocktail of national currencies, just as the Special Drawing Right is today. In time, though, its value against national currencies would cease to matter, because people would choose it for its convenience, and the stability of its purchasing power.”
This Rothschild owned financial publication (The Economist), 28 years ago – laid out exactly what the central bankers were PLANNING. All we had to do was read it. Major things like this just don’t happen. Little by little you need to get (in this case) the world angry with the U.S., our policies, and our ever-abused currency. First Libya tried to get away from selling oil in U.S. dollars – their government was changed. Then Iraq tried it – and their government was toppled. Then the CEO of a large French energy company TOTAL suggested: “There is NO NEED to trade oil in U.S. dollars.” Weeks later, he was killed in an airplane – that was hit by a snowplow – driven by a drunk driver. No, I can’t make this stuff up.
Today, Russia and China are transacting billions of dollars in oil trades – all in their native currencies. It’s only a matter of time until the Saudi's publicly state that they'll accept anyone's currency for their oil. When that happens, the big global reset will be near because the days of the ‘petro-dollar’ will be over. Cries of currency manipulation will continue to rise; all the while currency exchange rates will drive people to demand change. Canadian currency (for example) has lost almost 50% of its purchasing power in a very short period of time. Food costs in Canada have gone up dramatically because 80% of their food is imported. A box of frosted flakes is now $15, and a cucumber is $3.
All of this was PLANNED. Market instability will increase, economies will continue to grind lower, and eventually the public will come (hat in hand) begging Governments to ‘do something’. And that ‘something’ will involve pseudo-white knights sweeping in from Brussels and the U.N. – presenting the world with a unified global reserve currency.
The world is in flux. Consider the unstoppable progress of technology and what it will do to the jobs situation. What do you think the one-time cashiers, machinists, office workers, bartenders, burger-makers, etc. are going to do when robots replace them? The common line of thinking is that they will be re-trained for different jobs. Unfortunately, the jobs they will be re-trained for – will be replaced by even more technology. Right now Uber is one of those ‘gig jobs’ that many are using for extra cash. To quote the CEO of Uber when talking about autonomous cars: “Our service would be a whole lot cheaper if you weren't paying for that other dude in the car.” So I’m wondering what the ‘Master Plan’ has in store for untold millions of idled workers?
Humans (for lack of a better word) are being phased out. While nothing ever goes strictly according to plan, you have to admire how much ‘the Powers that Be’ have accomplished:
- Our kids have become dumbed down.
- Our colleges have become expensive sandboxes for the easily insulted.
- Our government (for the first time in history) forces us to purchase medical insurance.
- We are blanketed by inflation, but are being told that it’s imaginary.
- Wages have stagnated for 30 years, and it’s being termed progress.
- And one well-paying job has been replaced by two lousier part-time ones that do not include pensions or benefits.
And all of this was NOT by accident – look at the date on the coin.
This week global markets were pronounced as ‘officially’ being in ‘bear’ territory as they were down over 20%. Soon, we will see country after country move into recession territory. The dynamics about this situation appear to be far more challenging than in 2008. This next global recession will be based upon the burden of debt. The larger picture is not based upon corporate indebtedness, but rather (to use a Warren Buffett phrase) our own derivatives – aka ‘financial time bombs’. You see U.S. Debt is now at $18.9 Trillion (growing at $0.1 Trillion per week) with the total derivative market estimated to be over $700 Trillion. In the Wall Street ‘derivative casino’, people are actively betting on events whose inaccuracy will not be exposed for many years. The true question will be whether this ‘bear market’ will finally expose the ‘derivatives casino’ as the ‘pyramid scheme’ that it really is?
This week our markets (after falling for over 2,000 points on the DOW since Dec. 30) set a short-term bottom around 1 pm on Wednesday. Oil then proceeded to gain 17% in just two sessions. Mario Draghi also reported that since $7.8 Trillion has been lost from global equities in 2016, all of the Central Banks are prepared to act in concert to prevent a global market meltdown. It seems that Central Banks around the world are getting ready to unleash holy hell in stimulus to SAVE the STOCK MARKETS. I guess that takes the ‘free’ out of our ‘free market’ system.
Okay, so what happens now? I don't for a minute think that we have seen the bottom in stocks for 2016. I do however think that IF oil doesn't collapse, AND China stabilizes a bit – this ‘snap-back’ rally has more to go. Those are two big ‘IFs’, but I could see this running all the way to 1950 on the S&P. We were way overdue for a ‘snap-back’, and now we have it. The only question is: does this last for another day, few days, a week or maybe two weeks. The answer to that question lies in how oil behaves. If there are any more problems in the Middle East between the Saudi's and the Iranians – then oil could remain elevated. But I do NOT think this is going to last all that long, because the true earnings just don't support it.
To date, of the companies that have reported earnings, only 47% of them have beaten their estimated revenue numbers. Certainly ‘more’ have engineered an Earnings Per Share beat – but that’s just accounting fiction at this point. You can’t fake sales, and sales are slowing across the board. Should this market run back to the old highs on falling revenues? I think not.
Enjoy this bounce for what it is, but it isn't time to toss the kitchen sink at it for the long term.
- Long various mining stocks: AG, AUY, EGO, GFI, IAG, and FFMGF,
- Long an oil supplier: REN @ $0.56,
- Long FB (Facebook) – heading into their earnings mid-next week,
- Long ATO (AutoZone), and
- Sold SPX – Mar – Call Credit Spread – 2025 / 2030.
To follow me on Twitter.com and on StockTwits.com to get my daily thoughts and trades – my handle is: taylorpamm.
Please be safe out there!
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Until next week – be safe.