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Everything posted by bostonangler

  1. U.S. stocks rose after the Trump administration announced it would be removing some goods from its proposed tariff list and delaying tariffs on others beyond the previous September 1 deadline. The news sent bond yields higher, after the curve flattened the most in more than a decade earlier in the session. Here were the main moves in the market, as of 9:51 a.m. ET: S&P 500 (^GSPC😞 +1.51%, or 43.49 points Dow (^DJI😞 +1.35%, or 348.53 points Nasdaq (^IXIC😞 +1.73%, or 135.18 points 10-year Treasury yield (^TNX😞 +4.3 bps to 1.68% U.S. dollar to onshore Chinese yuan rate (CNY=X😞 +0.0992% to 7.0647 The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative announced Tuesday that products including “cell phones, laptop computers, video game consoles, certain toys, computer monitors, and certain items of footwear and clothing” would not be hit with a 10% tariff until December 15. Originally, President Donald Trump announced at the start of August that he would be imposing a 10% tariff on $300 billion worth of Chinese imports starting September 1, which would have included many of these products. The USTR also announced some goods would not be added to the tariff list, as previously expected. “Certain products are being removed from the tariff list based on health, safety, national security and other factors and will not face additional tariffs of 10 percent,” the USTR said in a statement. The announcement came after China’s vice premier Liu He spoke with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin over the phone Tuesday night, according to China’s state-run media agency Xinhua. Both sides agreed to conduct another call in two weeks following the discussions, which reportedly focused on the 10% tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese goods, Earlier in the session, falling bond yields and a narrowing spread between the closely watched 10-year and 2-year yields sent contracts on the three major stock indices lower before the USTR’s announcement sent shares higher. Uncertainty about the global outlook had also added to investor jitters, with geopolitical unrest mounting everywhere from Latin America to Asia. Argentina’s peso plummeted to a record low of about 60 per dollar Monday and remained weaker than 50-per-dollar into Tuesday’s session, after center-right President Mauricio Macri performed worse-than-expected in primary elections over the weekend. The weak performance by the more market-friendly leader sent Argentine equities tumbling, with the Global X MSCI Argentina ETF (ARGT) down more than 24% Monday before paring some losses Tuesday morning. Meanwhile, the People’s Bank of China fixed its yuan at 7.0326 per dollar Tuesday, marking the fourth straight session with the currency weaker than the psychological 7-per-dollar level. However, this was still stronger than expected by consensus analysts, according to Reuters-compiled estimates. The yuan against the U.S. dollar remains a closely monitored currency pair after the Treasury Department officially designated China a currency manipulator last week, amid an ongoing trade war with the U.S. In Hong Kong, flights were canceled out of Hong Kong International Airport for a second consecutive day as pro-democracy protesters overtook the global transportation hub. This marked the fifth straight day that activists flooded the airport, with sit-ins starting in one of the busiest commuter centers in the world starting Friday. Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., August 12, 2019. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz More Shares of Cathay Pacific (0293.HK), a Hong Kong-based airline, fell 2.5% Tuesday on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, extending Monday’s declines. The airline said over the weekend that it would cooperate with China’s aviation authority prohibiting staff members who supported the Hong Kong protests from flying to and over mainland China. Thousands of Hong Kongers have been galvanized to demonstrate against certain Hong Kong policies and police activities. Protests have now stretched into an eleventh week, after initial demonstrations were sparked over a government proposal for an extradition bill that would have allowed criminal suspects to mainland China for trials. While Beijing has condemned the demonstrations and thrown support to Hong Kong’s government to contain protesters, the Chinese government has not initiated military action into Hong Kong, which many observers said would be regarded as a move further undercutting Hong Kong’s semiautonomy. Consumer prices rose in-line with expectations in July Meanwhile, new economic data released Tuesday underscored still-muted inflationary pressures in the U.S., with consumer prices edging up at a near-expected pace in July. The Bureau of Labor Statistics’s headline consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.3% month-over-month in July, as anticipated. Over the last 12 months, consumer prices rose 1.8%, slightly above the 1.7% increase expected and June’s 1.6% increase, driven by a rise in gas and housing prices. Excluding more volatile food and energy prices, CPI rose 0.3% month-over-month and 2.2% year-over-year in July, slightly ahead of the unchanged 2.1% pace from June expected. While CPI is not the Federal Reserve’s mostly closely watched measure of inflation, it provides another gauge of consumer price fluctuations. July’s results reinforced the latest personal consumptions expenditures (PCE) price index – the Fed’s preferred inflation measure – which showed tepid inflation for June Good new? B/A
  2. I agree with most of that.. How about Koch and the ICE raids... I read no one has been charged... There is the true problem.. B/A
  3. The world was here billions of years before us and will be here billions of years after we are gone. B/A
  4. But why does he want a citizen question? To collect taxes? To gerrymander districts? To effects states? I'm asking, because I really don't know. B/A
  5. So we do agree on something. Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump The electoral college is a disaster for a democracy. 11:45 PM · Nov 6, 2012
  6. That's exactly what our president has been doing.... Shredding the constitution. Take the census for example. According to the constitution the census which is to count people not just citizens is to be used for many things including taxes... But he doesn't like it so he wants to shred it. Here is a great resource to search the constitution and it's meanings.!/ B/A
  7. I never missed that show when I was a kid... Thanks Umbertino B/A
  8. You support Trump... The man with policies taking down America faster than any president in history... That's 100% foolish. U.S. Budget Deficit Already Exceeds Last Year’s Total Figure The U.S. fiscal deficit has already exceeded the full-year figure for last year, as spending growth outpaces revenue. The gap grew to $866.8 billion in the first 10 months of the fiscal year, up 27% from the same period a year earlier, the Treasury Department said in its monthly budget report on Monday. That’s wider than last fiscal year’s shortfall of $779 billion -- which was the largest federal deficit since 2012. So far in the fiscal year that began Oct. 1, a revenue increase of 3% hasn’t kept pace with a 8% rise in spending. While still a modest source of income, tariffs imposed by the Trump administration helped almost double customs duties to $57 billion in the period. Trump Signs Budget and Debt-Limit Legislation, White House Says Republican tax cuts, increased federal spending and an aging population have contributed to the fiscal strains, though the GOP says tax reform enacted last year will spur economic growth and lift government revenue. Corporate income-tax receipts rose 3% between October and July, while individual income taxes gained 1%, according to Treasury data. Wider Than 2018 After just 10 months, the U.S. budget deficit has grown to $866.8 billion Source: Treasury Department, data compiled by Bloomberg The annual budget deficit is expected to exceed $1 trillion starting in 2022, the Congressional Budget Office has said. The non-partisan agency is scheduled to update its latest 10-year budget and economic forecasts on Aug. 21. For the month of July, the budget deficit was $119.7 billion, compared with $76.9 billion a year earlier, according to Treasury. Still, “July 2019 was a record receipts month, and the month is generally a deficit month -- 63 of the last 65 times,” a senior Treasury official said in an accompanying statement. B/A
  9. What does this really mean? Is this a way to move from the dollar? B/A
  10. I don't get the argument that the world is changing. I do get the argument that it is natural and not man-made. With that said, live it up and waste the earth as much as you can. Who cares about your grandkid's future? Don't go out and try to improve things or reduce your impact, hell just go out and burn down a forest... Because as Ronny James Dio once wrote.... "We are the last in line" B/A
  11. Trump’s victory another example of how Electoral College wins are bigger than popular vote ones For the fifth time in U.S. history, and the second time this century, a presidential candidate has won the White House while losing the popular vote. In this week’s Electoral College balloting, Donald Trump won 304 electoral votes to Hillarious Clinton’s 227, with five Democratic and two Republican “faithless electors” voting for other people. That result was despite the fact that Clinton received nearly 2.9 million more popular votes than Trump in November’s election, according to Pew Research Center’s tabulation of state election results. Our tally shows Clinton won 65.8 million votes (48.25%) to almost 63 million (46.15%) for Trump, with minor-party and independent candidates taking the rest. This mismatch between the electoral and popular votes came about because Trump won several large states (such as Florida, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin) by very narrow margins, gaining all their electoral votes in the process, even as Clinton claimed other large states (such as California, Illinois and New York) by much wider margins. Trump’s share of the popular vote, in fact, was the seventh-smallest winning percentage since 1828, when presidential campaigns began to resemble those of today. In fact, the very nature of the way the U.S. picks its presidents tends to create a disconnect between the outcome in the Electoral College and the popular vote. The last time a popular-vote loser won the presidency in the Electoral College was, of course, in 2000, when George W. Bush edged out Al Gore 271-266 despite Gore winning some 537,000 more popular votes nationwide. The other electoral-popular vote mismatches came in 1876 and 1888; in all four instances the Democratic nominee ended up the loser. (In the 1824 election, which was contested between rival factions of the old Democratic-Republican Party, Andrew Jackson won a plurality of the popular and electoral vote, but because he was short of an Electoral College majority the election was thrown to the House of Representatives, which chose runner-up John Quincy Adams.) Even in the vast majority of U.S. elections, in which the same candidate won both the popular and the electoral vote, the system usually makes the winner’s victory margin in the former a lot wider than in the latter. In 2012, for example, Barack Obama won 51% of the nationwide popular vote but nearly 62% of the electoral votes, or 332 out of 538. Looking back at all presidential elections since 1828, the winner’s electoral vote share has, on average, been 1.36 times his popular vote share – what we’ll call the electoral vote (EV) inflation factor. Trump’s EV inflation factor, based on his winning 56.5% of the electoral votes (304 out of 538) is 1.22, similar to Obama’s in 2012 (1.21). A quick Electoral College refresher: The 538 electors allocated (mainly by population) among the 50 states and the District of Columbia actually choose the president and vice president, with a majority of electoral votes (i.e., 270) needed for an outright win. All but two states use a plurality winner-take-all system to pick their presidential electors – whoever receives the most votes in a state wins all of its electoral votes, even if he or she got less than a majority of the popular vote. (Maine and Nebraska award some of their electoral votes by congressional district rather than statewide; that enabled Trump to win one of Maine’s four electoral votes, for the state’s 2nd District, even though Clinton won the state overall.) The biggest disparity between the winning electoral and popular votes, with an EV inflation factor of 1.96, came in 1912 in the four-way slugfest between Democrat Woodrow Wilson, Republican incumbent William Howard Taft, Progressive Theodore Roosevelt (who had bolted from the Republicans) and Socialist Eugene V. Debs. Wilson won a whopping 82% of the electoral votes – 435 out of 531 – with less than 42% of the overall popular vote. (In fact, Wilson won popular vote majorities in only 11 of the 40 states he carried – all in what was then the solidly Democratic South.) The next biggest gap was the 1980 “Reagan landslide.” In that three-way contest, Ronald Reagan took just under 51% of the popular vote, to Jimmy Carter’s 41% and independent John Anderson’s 6.6%. But Reagan soared past Carter in the Electoral College: 489 electoral votes (91% of the total) to 49, for an EV inflation factor of 1.79. Many of the elections with the most-inflated electoral votes featured prominent third-party candidates, who served to hold down the winners’ popular vote share without being significant Electoral College players themselves. On the other hand, when the two major-party nominees ran fairly evenly and there were no notable independents or third parties, the Electoral College vote has tended to be much closer to the popular tally. In 2004, for instance, incumbent Bush won a second term with just under 51% of the popular vote and 53% of the electoral votes (286 out of 538). A notable feature of the 2016 Electoral College vote was the record number of so-called “faithless electors” – electors who cast their ballots for someone other than the official nominee of the party they’re pledged to represent. The five Democratic electors who voted for people other than Clinton included three from Washington State who chose Colin Powell and another who chose Yankton Sioux tribal elder Faith Spotted Eagle, and one from Hawaii who voted for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Clinton’s rival in the primaries. In addition, the two Texas electors who spurned Trump voted instead for Ohio Gov. John Kasich (whom Trump had defeated in the primaries) and former U.S. Rep. Ron Paul. B/A
  12. The United States of Amnesia.... How soon we forget or choose to ignore truth. When did Electoral College override popular vote? The "national popular vote" is the sum of all the votes cast in the general election, nationwide. The presidential elections of 1876, 1888, 2000, and 2016 produced an Electoral College winner who did not receive the most votes in the general election.
  13. I see someone is confused... Let me explain. The electoral college, (the system that put Trump in the white house over the popular vote), is made up of appointed people. The parties in your state get to pick who has a vote in the electoral college. So when republicans have more people controlling your state they pick?.... You guessed it republicans. Who vote?.... Yup you guessed it again, republican. Now the democrats are picking up control and soon they will choose who votes for the electoral college. And yes sir you guessed it again, they will pick democrats who will vote for their party... So you see. It doesn't matter who you vote for. It matters who the electoral college votes for and what really matters is who picks the electorals for your state... GL B/A
  14. Well if I did, I would give them their money's worth. Not some made up fantasy and then go bankrupt and keep their money... I have a conscience and that's why I'm poor... I just can't make myself lie, cheat and steal. Now before you jump on me, I'm not saying he is the only one. I know there are liars and cheats on all sides. I'm just saying he is good at it and I just can't bring myself to such low points just for money... I like money, but it's not the most important thing to me. B/A
  15. I don't disagree it was a good system when it took people days if not weeks to get to town to vote. Perhaps they couldn't leave their farms to vote at all. The system was designed for a time when people couldn't jump in their car and drive 5 minutes to vote. But it is antiquated. That doesn't mean it can't be updated. But let's be honest. When the impact of the left winning the house goes into effect and they start appointing their side to the electoral college, I bet you will see my point. There will be a shift in the paradigm and we will see what people think then. B/A
  16. I can't believe those who deny this is real. If anyone believes this is a hoax is someone I don't need to be around. They live in a fantasy world. B/A
  17. I hope you are paying attention... While the evil left tries to destroy America, the evil right is well on their way... Increased debt... True? Reduced revenue... True? Corruption running rampart.... True? Bond markets crashing.... True? Mass Murder on the rise.... True? Politicians on both sides dividing... True? 2- 10 yield inverting.... True? I hope you are paying attention. B/A
  18. As the polls correctly showed (although I know some can not admit it) she won the popular vote and he won the electoral vote. My only problem with the electoral college is those who represent it are appointed. So due to the fact one party or the other has an advantage in a state they control the entire process. The system is like many things outdated and needs revisiting. B/A
  19. Michael J. Casey is the chairman of CoinDesk’s advisory board and a senior advisor for blockchain research at MIT’s Digital Currency Initiative. The following article originally appeared in CoinDesk Weekly, a custom-curated newsletter delivered every Sunday exclusively to our subscribers. The global economy faces its biggest crisis in 11 years. Related: China’s Central Bank ‘Close’ to Launching Official Digital Currency In theory, this should be bitcoin’s moment to shine, a chance to prove itself as an uncorrelated asset immune from political risks. Eventually, that result may bear out. But a rocky road lies ahead – for bitcoiners and nocoiners alike. Before we do the bitcoin up or down game, let’s dive into why the current situation in global finance is so disturbing. The Backdrop It all begun last Monday, when Beijing let the renminbi fall below RMB7.0 to the dollar. Almost immediately, the U.S. Treasury Department said it would take the rare step of labeling China a “currency manipulator,” a move that, in theory, would give the Trump Administration legal cover to impose punitive sanctions against Chinese. Markets freaked out at the specter of a currency war, a ***-for-tat feedback loop of exchange rate depreciations fueling a destructive downward spiral in trade and growth. Related: Coinbase UK Dropping Support for Cryptocurrency Zcash Now, that fear may never play out. On Thursday, the People’s Bank of China helped assuage investors’ fears. In buying more renminbi to stabilize its value, it signaled that it isn’t, for now, intending to aggressively use its currency as a trade weapon. Also, the U.S. pronouncement made no sense. By the Treasury Department’s own definition, manipulation entails persistent, one-sided intervention in markets to weaken the domestic currency. But the renminbi’s fall came because the PBOC briefly had pared back its prior interventions supporting it. If anything, China has persistently done the opposite of market manipulation over the past five years, propping up its currency against a market that wanted to take it lower, all in order to refocus the country’s economic growth model away from a dependence on foreign exports. On that basis, there’s no way the International Monetary Fund or World Trade Organization would support the Trump Administration’s case that China is a currency manipulator, leaving the U.S. vulnerable to very harmful international sanctions if it were to unilaterally hit China with retribution on that basis. The Ripple Effect The problem is the global political economic environment doesn’t build confidence that politicians will act rationally. Facts and multilateral institutions’ views carry less weight in an era when major Western nations are retreating from the neo-liberal norms of the nineties and aughts. So, don’t be surprised if we see even more extreme market turmoil over currency war risk in the near future. Any escalation would play out in a global spiral. A weaker renminbi means all other countries that trade with China are also disadvantaged. So, they’ll also feel compelled to weaken their currencies, which means their trading partners will in turn feel pressured to do so. Any countries with nominally free-floating currencies won’t do this via intervention or outright devaluation; instead they’ll use interest rate cuts, which soften demand for their currencies and so have a similar effect. Central banks don’t even need to justify such cuts in currency terms; they’ll just note that a global trade war is undermining the domestic economic outlook. Already, New Zealand, India and Thailand have announced interest rate cuts in response to the renminbi’s decline. Meanwhile, bond markets are expressing investors’ worst fears: the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note is now almost below that of the three-month T-bill, ominously close to an “inverted yield curve,” which has traditionally signaled impending recession and much weaker monetary policy from the Federal Reserve. This low interest environment is eating into banks costs. This is why Swiss bank UBS is now charging large depositors a fee to hold money at the bank – a negative interest rates play that angers savers. The scariest image here is not one of rebellion by angry rich savers, or even of a repeat of the heavy market turmoil of the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis or the even more extreme losses of 2008-2009. It’s that a currency war in which the U.S. is a deliberate belligerent would look more like the 1930s. That’s when the end of the gold standard and the U.S. Smoot-Hawley tariff law combined to spur a global cycle of devaluations that extended and widened the Great Depression. The ensuing international tensions fanned the flames of the Second World War. Of course, this is not the 1930s. We have a far more globalized economy, and we have the Internet. This greater interconnectivity, economists and political scientists often argue, will compel people, businesses and their politicians to resist conflict, economic or otherwise. But we also now know that interconnectivity, at least in its current “Web 2.0” format, has been highly disruptive to a political establishment that used to champion pro-globalization, pro-free trade policies. Google’s and Facebook’s centralized, data-mining algorithms have created echo chambers of dopamine-addicted group-thinkers, which, along with disinformation bots and “fake news,” have weakened the mainstream media outlets around which that establishment once revolved. The ‘Buy Bitcoin’ Argument Whether you’re cheering for its demise or not, the liberal vision of the nation-state is under threat, and that’s sowing chaos. On one side, the Internet has enabled new, transnational groups with loyalties that transcend their countries’ interests. On the other, this dislocation has fostered a backlash from defenders of the pre-liberal order of hardline state power. This same past week’s images of China’s violent crackdown in Hong Kong, where protesters desperately attempted to neutralize Beijing’s frightening digital surveillance, is a prime example. Another is Trump’s militaristic rhetoric. But here’s what also wasn’t around 80 years ago: cryptocurrency. People who worried in the 1930s about currency debasements, ethnic conflict or war destroying their wellbeing often turned to gold as a safe haven. Gold represented an ancient, widely recognized store of value whose properties, including its supply, were outside of the influence of turmoil-stoking governments. But now a citizen seeking a hedge against such threats has a digital alternative, one that’s far more appropriate for the Internet age, a vital bulwark against the centralized control of both banks and large Internet companies and against wayward governments. That alternative is bitcoin, whose digital properties are similar to those of “hard currencies” like gold: it’s hard to mine, provably scarce, fungible and transferable. Even better, as bitcoin bulls like to point out, the upcoming halving in bitcoin’s supply will put its stock-to-flow ratio above that of gold. (I’d say that should be priced in, however; I don’t see it as a reason, in and of itself, to buy now.) Why bitcoin and not some more recent, technically superior altcoin? Because, as with gold’s preeminence over silver as a safe haven, bitcoin has by far the biggest community of believers in its capacity to protect a holder’s wealth from political incursions. It’s this shared belief that gives bitcoin its power, a point poorly understood by those who erroneously argue that software forks undermine its digital scarcity. (Exhibit A: Bitcoin Cash’s market cap compared with bitcoin’s.) Herein lies the “buy bitcoin” argument for this current moment: that, regardless of your own beliefs, a sufficiently large number of other people now believe bitcoin to be the best way to hedge against political-economic turmoil in the global financial system. It’s tempting to say this mindset helped drive bitcoin’s price higher after Monday’s currency market news. But it’s always been difficult to correlate bitcoin’s day-to-day movements to real-world move. More important is the fact that bitcoin has not sold off in recent months as other real-world assets have come under pressure – a result that possibly counteracts an argument I made a year ago that global financial market jitters would first spark a selloff, as bitcoin would be lumped into widespread risk aversion, with a recovery only once it had established its credentials as hedge against politics. Perhaps the departure of many newbie speculators who bought in during the crypto mania of 2017 has left the market in the hands of a more die-hard core of true-believing HODLers. Still, it would be foolish to assume the path from here is straight upwards. One major risk to that view is that of a profound, sweeping regulatory backlash, a jump into what Nic Carter of has labeled the phase of “full criminalization.” The idea is that governments, seeing investment outflows accompanying the financial turmoil, will worry about bitcoin enabling capital flight and so seek to ban it or at least introduce restrictions on exchanges that make the on- and off-ramps very difficult to use. For sure, a global regulatory backlash can’t kill the censorship-resistant “Honeybadger of money,” which is these kinds of situations do make a strong case for owning it in the long run. But for now the best prediction is that market volatility will continue.
  20. How can you learn? Even if it is to strengthen your own message if you stick your head in the sand? B/A
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