“We’re already entering a crisis state, and it’s going to get worse.”
America’s retirement system has entered a danger zone and is breaking down, according to CBS News, which notes that roughly half of U.S. families don’t have a single dime set aside for retirement.
While millions of Americans put part of their income into an employer-sponsored 401(k), IRA or other retirement account, millions more find it hard or impossible to save because of their precarious situations unemployment, stagnant income, impossible health costs or other factors.
“Behind these currents, as always, are political choices we make as a nation, along with the deep-pocketed special interests that steer public policy in ways that may not align with the common good,” CBS noted.
The network predicted a growing segment of the U.S. population could see their living standards erode as their retirement savings if they have any run out. Continue reading →
Back in December one of my predictions for the year was inflation. This has occurred without fail so far with the foods. The only question I have now is trying to determine the extent of food inflation we will see this year.
If any doubts that food inflation is here, they don’t do the grocery shopping. I think we will see around 57% food inflation in 2014. If so, that is going to place a lot of folks into or close to hunger. From what I see of the prices so far and the coming shortages, I don’t doubt that this much food inflation can happen this year. In terms of USDs (United States Dollars) this means for a family that now spends $10,000 on food that same food is going to cost $15,700. $10,000 sounds like a lot for food. That comes to $192.30 a week. A lot of families spend this much each week total on food and drink.
There are some positive things that can be done to soften the food inflation of 2014. Continue reading →
If market follows the same script, trouble lies directly ahead
There are eerie parallels between the stock market’s recent behavior and how it behaved right before the 1929 crash.
That at least is the conclusion reached by a frightening chart that has been making the rounds on Wall Street. The chart superimposes the market’s recent performance on top of a plot of its gyrations in 1928 and 1929.
The picture isn’t pretty. And it’s not as easy as you might think to wriggle out from underneath the bearish significance of this chart. Continue reading →
When former South African President Nelson Mandela died on December 5, federal contracting officials prepared documents authorizing the State Department to spend up to $11,519,617 on hotels and ground transportation costs for President Obama and his entourage to attend the memorial service.
One contract letter budgeted more than $8.2 million for passenger vehicles, SUVs, vans, buses, pickup trucks, box trucks, and ‘larger capacity vehicles,’ according to documents first posted online by The Weekly Standard.
Two more authorized State to spend in excess of $3.2 million on hotels from December 6 to January 20, including costs for a whopping 5,730 ‘hotel room nights’ overall – a number that works out to represent more than 127 separate rooms.
It’s unclear how much the State Department actually spent. But the president, it turned out, spent less than 13 hours on the ground in South Africa on December 10 – arriving and departing on the same day. Continue reading →
The stock market continues to set new highs, which is exciting and fun for those of us who own stocks.
I own stocks, so I’m certainly enjoying it.
I hope stocks continue to charge higher, but I can’t find much data to suggest that they will. I only have a vague hope that the Fed will continue to pump air into the balloon and corporations will continue to find ways to cut more costs and grow their already record-high earnings.
Meanwhile, every valid valuation measure I look at suggests that stocks are at least 40% overvalued and, therefore, are likely to produce lousy returns over the next 10 years.
Here comes a messy budget battle Obama’s Illinois speech aimed at the high road, but fiscal fights make for a less lofty reality. (Read Full Story)
Trouble for Obama housing program
Mortgages modified through the government’s main foreclosure prevention program are re-defaulting at an alarming rate. (Read Full Story)
Federal judge blocks challenges to Detroit bankruptcy
Retirees and their pension funds quickly sued to block the bankruptcy filing, claiming it violated Michigan’s state constitution. A county judge ruled in favor of the retirees last week, though the Michigan Court of Appeals reversed that ruling. (Read Full Story)
Treasurys’ recent losses may be just the beginning The rising yields that have characterized the bond markets over the past few months are only the start of a “potentially difficult transition” to a rising rate environment, says Michael Temple, director of U.S. credit research at asset-manager Pioneer Investments. (Read Full Story)
1,646 days in, Obama says the economy remains his top concern – again It’s that time of the month week again – time to spread the manure… (Read Full Story)
Obama: Defense Veto Unless Vets Pay More For Health Care A veto of the defense authorization bill is threatened unless the president gets his way. He wants health care insurance premiums and co-pays increased for troops … (Read Full Story)
Eight More U.S. Cities on the Verge of Bankruptcy The city bankruptcy epidemic is likely to spread around the country, resulting from years of overspending on wages and pensions in order to keep public employee unions happy and city politicians re-elected. We take a look at eight U.S. cities on the verge of bankruptcy…(Read Full Story)
After 32 Years Bond Bull Market is Officially Dead Be prepared for the consequences from rising interest rates in 2014. They could be catastrophic for bond market investors. (Read Full Story)
Debt Levels Are Skyrocketing To Extremely Dangerous Levels – How Long Can This Possibly Keep Going? Never before has the world faced such a serious debt crisis. (Read Full Story)
99-Year-Old Man Works For Minimum Wage…For Over 30 Years
One thing he apparently for sure doesn’t talk about is retirement. (Read Full Story)
Who Controls The Global Economy? Do Not Underestimate The Power Of The Big Banks Are the big banks really as powerful as some people say that they are? Do they really control the global economy? If you asked most people, they would tell you that governments control the global economy. But the campaigns of our politicians are funded by the ultra-wealthy, the big banks and the large corporations that they control. (Read Full Story)
Best Days for Gold Still Ahead The prevailing mantra on Wall Street is that gold’s bull market is now over and it’s time to bury precious metals as an investment theme for the indefinite … (Read Full Story)
99% Pure Silver Coins Are Junk! For Hundreds of Years since the late 1400s, the standard in Silver Coinage was set by the THALER from Joachim’s Valley, in what was then Bohemia and now is the Czech Republic (which the Brits & British Colonists called “Dollars”). An excellent discussion of the renaissance of silver coin minting and sound money… (Read Full Story)
IRS Org Chart Puts Ingram, Lerner at Center of Power
UNDER THE BUS: An official Internal Revenue Service (IRS) organizational chart of the Tax Exempt & Government Entities division from February 2011 offers a more complete picture of the authority Lois Lerner–the now-removed IRS director of the tax-exempt unit–and Sarah Hall Ingram–presently tasked with overseeing the implementation of Obamacare–held as the IRS scheme to politically target conservative groups was hatched (Read Full Story)
Disgraced IRS Chiefs: IRS Needs More Money
In their attempts to shift blame and evade clear answers to questions about the Internal Revenue Services targeting of conservative groups, disgraced former IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman and disgraced former Acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller both said that what the IRS really needs are more people and money to function properly. Two nice Jewisher boys want more of your money, so that they can continue their investigation of YOU… Oy Vey! (Read Full Story)
Student Loan Problems: One Third Of Millennials Regret Going To College Heres an indication of how burdensome student loans have become: About one-third of millennials say they would have been better off working, instead of going to college and paying tuition… Where? Denney’s ain’t hiring dishwashers and KFC is closing stores all over the country, in order to not have to fund ObamaDoesn’t Care… (Read Full Story)
Now The Gibson Guitar Raids Make Sense IRS Scandal: The inexplicable raid nearly two years ago on a guitar maker for using allegedly illegal wood that its competitors also used was another targeting by this … Gibson’s chief executive, Henry Juszkiewicz, contributed to Republican politicians. (Read Full Story)
What is going to happen when the greatest economic bubble in the history of the world pops? The mainstream media never talks about that. They are much too busy covering the latest dogfights in Washington and what Justin Bieber has been up to. And most Americans seem to think that if the Dow keeps setting new all-time highs that everything must be okay. Sadly, that is not the case at all. Right now, the U.S. economy is exhibiting all of the classic symptoms of a bubble economy. You can see this when you step back and take a longer-term view of things. Over the past decade, we have added more than 10 trillion dollars to the national debt. But most Americans have shown very little concern as the balance on our national credit card has soared from 6 trillion dollars to nearly 17 trillion dollars.
Meanwhile, Wall Street has been transformed into the biggest casino on the planet, and much of the new money that the Federal Reserve has been recklessly printing up has gone into stocks. But the Dow does not keep setting new records because the underlying economic fundamentals are good. Rather, the reckless euphoria that we are seeing in the financial markets right now reminds me very much of 1929. Margin debt is absolutely soaring, and every time that happens a crash rapidly follows. But this time when a crash happens it could very well be unlike anything that we have ever seen before. The top 25 U.S. banks have more than 212 trillion dollars of exposure to derivatives combined, and when that house of cards comes crashing down there is no way that anyone will be able to prop it back up. After all, U.S. GDP for an entire year is only a bit more than 15 trillion dollars. Continue reading →
The foundation of the Soviet model of trade and investment was centralization under the guise of “universal public ownership”. The entire goal of communism in general was not to give more social and political power to the people, but to extinguish alternative options and focus power into the hands of a select few. The process used to reach this end result can vary, but the goal always remains the same. In most cases, such centralization begins with economic hegemony, and it is in our fiscal structure that we have the means to see the future. Sovietization in our financial life will inevitably lead to sovietization in our political life.
Does the U.S. economys path resemble the Soviet template exactly? No. And Im sure the very suggestion will make the average unaware free market evangelical froth at the mouth. However, as I plan to show, the parallels in our fundamentals are disturbing; the reality is that true free markets in America died a long time ago. Continue reading →
As one of todays predominant and passionate political debates, many Americans believe their right to bear arms is being threatened. Thats why Flying Eagle Gold carries Second Amendment Right to Bear Arms Copper Rounds.
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Near the outer rim of the reverse of each round is the inscription NO MAN SHALL EVER BE DEBARRED THE USE OF ARMS,” THOMAS JEFFERSON.
Along with its weight and purity, the center of each 1 oz. Copper Round is inscribed with the following excerpt from the Second Amendment:
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
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Why Gold And Apple Are Tanking At Exactly The Same Time It’s not an accident… (Read Full Story)
Barisheff: Global Hyperinflation Coming Gold expert Nick Barisheff says the plunge in the gold price is sparking demand. Barisheff contends, Usually when there is a big drop in price of paper, there is also a drop in demand on physical gold. This is the first time I can remember that it has gone the opposite way. People are perceiving the drop in price as a gigantic buying opportunity. Its on sale at a lower price. (Read Full Story)
Financial Privacy Under Fire: DHS Freezes Bitcoin Money Transfers We are prompted to wonder whether this is this the first of a series of governmental assaults on the exchanges (Read Full Story)
How the Fed Undermines the Econcomy – Stable Prices, Unstable Markets
According to European Central Bank Governing Council member Ewald Nowotny, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke sees no risk of inflation in the United States. According to Nowotny, Bernanke had given a very optimistic portrayal of the US outlook. (Read Full Story)
Life, Liberty & All That Jazz
DHS Shuts Down BitCoin Payments System A representative for Dwolla told Betabeat that the company is not party to this matter and encourages those with questions to reach out to Mt. Gox or the DHS. (Read Full Story)
Insurers predict 100% to 400% Obamacare rate explosion Internal cost estimates from 17 of the nation’s largest insurance companies indicate that health insurance premiums will grow an average of 100 percent under Obamacare, and that some will soar more than 400 percent, crushing the administration’s goal of affordability. (Read Full Story)
Greenspan: Role Of Central Bankers Is to Try to Replicate the Stability of the Gold Standard Greenspan said on any number of occasions that his model was that a ‘fiat currency’ works when it emulates the rigor of the gold standard. (Read Full Story)
Gangsters Manipulating Gold and Silver Prices There are many signs of gangster state America. One is the collusion between federal authorities and banksters in a criminal conspiracy to rig the markets for gold and silver. (Read Full Story)
South Africa Imports $1 Billion of Unwrought Gold to Meet Global Demand The global demand for coins and bars that followed the fall in golds price caught even the most astute industry observer by surprise and there is no sign of the demand abating. (Read Full Story)
Check this out IRS scandal is just the tip of the iceberg Some days one cant help but look at the headlines and think of Ayn Rand. With all the destructive measures by desperate governments from Cyprus to Argentina, it seems sometimes like were reading from the pages of her seminal work, Atlas Shrugged. But what were seeing now seems to have… (Read Full Story)
Sales Tax Bill Threatens Economy The impact of the Marketplace Fairness Act (the so-called Internet Sales Tax Bill) which passed the Senate on May 6 received limited coverage in a May 10 Numismaster column. However, it deserves a much more detailed discussion. The negative effect it will have on numismatic and precious metals transactions will be dwarfed by the potentially disastrous economic fallout throughout the U.S. economy. (Read Full Story)
Late at night on November 6, along with John Mauldin, Doug Casey and a group of partygoers in a café here in Cafayate, we watched on a small television as Obama’s contract was renewed by a majority of the mob. As was the case with many readers, I suspect, my initial reaction was disbelief.
While I try not to pay a lot of attention to the careers of individual politicians, but rather prefer to monitor the carnage they inflict on the world in the collective, I sincerely believed that Obama’s steady transgressions against commonsense economics, individual liberty and the rule of law would see him unceremoniously turned out.
So much did I believe this that I even put money on the outcome. Upon waking the next morning, I reflected on what had come to pass and felt doubly stupid in having expected a different outcome. It was, in hindsight, so obvious.
You see, if Mitt Romney had been elected, it would have been a pause in the continuum that we here at Casey Research have been warning dear readers about for years. Continue reading →
The federal government spent enough money on federal means-tested welfare programs to have sent each impoverished household a check for nearly $60,000, according to figures from the Census Bureau and the Congressional Research Service (CRS).
According to a report from the CRS produced for Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), $1 trillion was spent on federal welfare programs during fiscal year 2011 with $746 billion in federal funds and $254 in state matching funds. (Read More)
The United States’ every economic score has sunk under Obama. We can’t take another four years.
Strangely enough, with all the rhetoric directed at which presidential candidate is better qualified to “save the middle class,” few in the media have asked just what it actually takes to do so. The short answer is economic growth. Candidates Romney and Ryan get this, even if the president does not. But how exactly does one conjure up growth?
The short answer, again, is that one produces goods and services that consumers prefer over those of others. In a free market, the supply of goods increases, the quality improves, and the price goes down. All consumers are better off, assuming they are able to compete in the marketplace. Continue reading →
A devastating economic depression is rapidly spreading across the largest economy in the world. Unemployment is skyrocketing, money is being pulled out of the banks at an astounding rate, bad debts are everywhere and economic activity is slowing down month after month. So who am I talking about? Not the United States – the economy that I am talking about has a GDP that is more than two trillion dollars larger. It is not China either – the economy that I am talking about is more than twice the size of China. You have probably guessed it by now – the largest economy in the world is the EU economy.
Things in Europe continue to get even worse. Greece and Spain are already experiencing full-blown economic depressions that continue to deepen, and Italy and France are headed down the exact same path that Greece and Spain have gone. Headlines about violent protests and economic despair dominate European newspapers day after day after day. European leaders hold summit meeting after summit meeting, but all of the “solutions” that get announced never seem to fix anything. In fact, the largest economy on the planet continues to implode right in front of our eyes, and the economic shockwave from this implosion is going to be felt to the four corners of the earth. Continue reading →
Over the years the American people have grown accustomed to the fiat currency. Realizing that inflation would destroy savings over a long period of time, spending became much more acceptable. After all, why save a thousand dollars only to see its purchasing power diminish over the years? Better to buy what you want and enjoy it now. So, as the time passed, Americans became net spenders rather than net savers. (Read Full Story)
A Jobs Report Conspiracy?
Well, isn’t that convenient? The Obama campaign desperately needed the last employment report to be released before the election to show that the unemployment rate had fallen below 8 percent, and somehow it magically happened. Even the founder of the Golden Arches would say, “What a Krock…” (Read Full Story)
US Foodstamp Usage Rises To New Record High
While the 0.4% perfectly unmanipulated and totally coincidental swing in the unemployment rate in an Obama favorable direction one month before the election came at a prime time moment for the market, one hour ahead of the open, setting the market mood for the rest of the day (which despite all best efforts still closed red, valiant efforts by Simon Potter and the FRBNY’s direct pipe to Citadel notwithstanding), there was one other, far more important data point released by the government’s department of agriculture, sufficiently late after the market close to impact no risk assets. That data point of course was foodstamps (or the government’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, aka SNAP), and we are confident that no readers will be surprised to learn that foodstamp usage for both persons and households, has jumped to a new all time record. (Read Full Story)
WASHINGTON (AP) Nearly 6 million Americans significantly more than first estimated will face a tax penalty under President Barack Obama’s health overhaul for not getting insurance, congressional analysts said Wednesday. Most would be in the middle class.
The new estimate amounts to an inconvenient fact for the administration, a reminder of what critics see as broken promises.
The numbers from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office are 50 percent higher than a previous projection by the same office in 2010, shortly after the law passed. The earlier estimate found 4 million people would be affected in 2016, when the penalty is fully in effect.
That’s still only a sliver of the population, given that more than 150 million people currently are covered by employer plans. Nonetheless, in his first campaign for the White House, Obama pledged not to raise taxes on individuals making less than $200,000 a year and couples making less than $250,000.
And the budget office analysis found that nearly 80 percent of those who’ll face the penalty would be making up to or less than five times the federal poverty level. Currently that would work out to $55,850 or less for an individual and $115,250 or less for a family of four.
Fridays payroll jobs report says that 96,000 new jobs were created in August and that the unemployment rate (U.3) fell from 8.3% to 8.1%. As 96,000 new jobs are not enough to keep up with population growth, the decline in the U.3 unemployment rate was caused by 368,000 discouraged job seekers giving up on finding employment and dropping out of the work force as measured by U.3. Discouraged workers are not included in the U.3 measure of unemployment, which makes the measure useless. The only purpose of U.3 is to keep bad news out of the news. the U.3 unemployment rate only measures those who have not been discouraged by the inability to find a job and are still actively seeking employment.
The government produces another unemployment measure, U.6, which includes people who have been discouraged by the inability to find a job and have been out of the work force for less than a year. This measure of unemployment is 14.7%, a number that would get attention if reported.
When the long-term (more than one year) discouraged workers are included, the US unemployment rate is about 22%. In other words, the real US rate of unemployment is almost three times higher than the reportedheadline rateof 8.1%. Continue reading →