Inflation Hits – Coconut And Lime Prices Surge

Considering that I buy 10-12 limes and at least 5 or 6 coconuts per week, not to mention 6-8 avocados and copious amounts of Habanero chili’s, you can imagine that over time, I’ve grown quite accustom to the general price of these items – that being pretty close to zero.

Seriously…if I’d ever imagined “checking and then re checking my receipt” concerned about getting ripped off purchasing any of these standard items well….the thought had never crossed my mind.

Until now.

Limes are through the roof!  The coconuts have tacked on an additional 20% since just last week, and don’t even get me started on the avocados! Outrageous!

Ok….a little humour here as…’s really not “outrageous” ( as everything still pretty much costs nothing ) but it does bring about an interesting point / issue.

Inflation is being seen in everything – everywhere.

I am completely dumfounded as to how a single “locally grown” coconut  could possibly cost more than a single can of beer, packaged in its aluminum can with its fancy logo, cold storage, transportation and manufacturing all factored in. Amazing.

The people of Mexico are feeling it too, as recent tax hikes have put pressure on retailers who’ve really had no choice but to raise prices – in turn passing the expense on to the customer.

Have you got an example of inflation in your local area? Something that you’ve noticed as of late that might be “putting the pinch” on spending?

Please do tell as I find it absolutely fascinating to see/hear/ understand how others are seeing this phenomenon manifest in “their” daily lives.

As an aside…..I’m strongly considering buying more beer in the future……..and perhaps saving the coconuts for weekends and special occasions only.

U.S Interests In Ukraine – A Brilliant Synopsis

Cut and past from a fellow named Mike Whitney ( thank you very much Mike ) who can be reached at: [email protected] as I could not have possibly explained it better myself.

In Ukraine, the US is using a divide and conquer strategy to pit the EU against trading partner Moscow.

The State Department and CIA helped to topple Ukraine’s elected President Viktor Yanukovych and install a US stooge in Kiev who was ordered to cut off the flow of Russian gas to the EU and lure Putin into a protracted guerilla war in Ukraine.

The bigwigs in Washington figured that, with some provocation, Putin would react the same way he did when Georgia invaded South Ossetia in 2006. But, so far, Putin has resisted the temptation to get involved which is why new puppet president Petro Poroshenko has gone all “Jackie Chan” and stepped up the provocations by pummeling east Ukraine mercilessly. It’s just a way of goading Putin into sending in the tanks.

But here’s the odd part: Washington doesn’t have a back-up plan. It’s obvious by the way Poroshenko keeps doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result. That demonstrates that there’s no Plan B. Either Poroshenko lures Putin across the border and into the conflict, or the neocon plan falls apart, which it will if they can’t demonize Putin as a “dangerous aggressor” who can’t be trusted as a business partner.

So all Putin has to do is sit-tight and he wins, mainly because the EU needs Moscow’s gas. If energy supplies are terminated or drastically reduced, prices will rise, the EU will slide back into recession, and Washington will take the blame. So Washington has a very small window to draw Putin into the fray, which is why we should expect another false flag incident on a much larger scale than the fire in Odessa. Washington is going to have to do something really big and make it look like it was Moscow’s doing. Otherwise, their pivot plan is going to hit a brick wall.

“Ukraine’s Parliament adopted .. a bill under which up to 49% of the country’s gas pipeline network could be sold to foreign investors. This could pave the way for US or EU companies, which have eyed Ukrainian gas transportation system over the last months.

Boy, you got to hand it to the Obama throng. They really know how to pick their coup-leaders, don’t they? These puppets have only been in office for a couple months and they’re already giving away the farm.

And, such a deal! US corporations will be able to buy up nearly half of a pipeline that moves 60 percent of the gas that flows from Russia to Europe. That’s what you call a tollbooth, my friend; and US companies will be in just the right spot to gouge Moscow for every drop of natural gas that transits those pipelines. And gouge they will too, you can bet on it.

Is that why the State Department cooked up this loony putsch, so their fatcat, freeloading friends could rake in more dough?

This also explains why the Obama crowd is trying to torpedo Russia’s other big pipeline project called Southstream. Southstream is a good deal for Europe and Russia.

On the one hand, it would greatly enhance the EU’s energy security, and on the other, it will provide needed revenues for Russia so they can continue to modernize, upgrade their dilapidated infrastructure, and improve standards of living. But “the proposed pipeline (which) would snake about 2,400 kilometers, or roughly 1,500 miles, from southern Russia via the Black Sea to Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary and ultimately Austria. (and) could handle about 60 billion cubic meters of natural gas a year, enough to allow Russian exports to Europe to largely bypass Ukraine” (New York Times) The proposed pipeline further undermines Washington’s pivot strategy, so Obama, the State Department and powerful US senators (Ron Johnson, John McCain, and Chris Murphy) are doing everything in their power to torpedo the project.

“What gives Vladimir Putin his power and control is his oil and gas reserves and West and Eastern Europe’s dependence on them,” Senator Johnson said in an interview. “We need to break up his stranglehold on energy supplies. We need to bust up that monopoly.” (New York Times)

What a bunch of baloney. Putin doesn’t have a monopoly on gas. Russia only provides 30 percent of the gas the EU uses every year. And Putin isn’t blackmailing anyone either. Countries in the EU can either buy Russian gas or not buy it. It’s up to them. No one has a gun to their heads. And Gazprom’s prices are competitive too, sometimes well-below market rates which has been the case for Ukraine for years, until crackpot politicians started sticking their thumb in Putin’s eye at every opportunity; until they decided that that they didn’t have to pay their bills anymore because, well, because Washington told them not to pay their bills. That’s why.

Ukraine is in the mess it’s in today for one reason, because they decided to follow Washington’s advice and shoot themselves in both feet. Their leaders thought that was a good idea. So now the country is broken, penniless and riven by social unrest. Regrettably, there’s no cure for stupidity.

The neocon geniuses apparently believe that if they sabotage Southstream and nail down 49 percent ownership of Ukraine’s pipeline infrastructure, then the vast majority of Russian gas will have to flow through Ukrainian pipelines. They think that this will give them greater control over Moscow. But there’s a glitch to this plan which analyst Jeffrey Mankoff pointed out in an article titled “Can Ukraine Use Its Gas Pipelines to Threaten Russia?”. Here’s what he said:

“The biggest problem with this approach is a cut in gas supplies creates real risks for the European economy… In fact, Kyiv’s efforts to siphon off Russian gas destined to Europe to offset the impact of a Russian cutoff in January 2009 provide a window onto why manipulating gas supplies is a risky strategy for Ukraine. Moscow responded to the siphoning by halting all gas sales through Ukraine for a couple of weeks, leaving much of eastern and southern Europe literally out in the cold. European leaders reacted angrily, blaming both Moscow and Kyiv for the disruption and demanding that they sort out their problems. While the EU response would likely be somewhat more sympathetic to Ukraine today, Kyiv’s very vulnerability and need for outside financial support makes incurring European anger by manipulating gas supplies very risky.

The funny thing about gas is that, when you stop paying the bills, they turn the heat off. Is that hard to understand?

So, yes, the State Department crystal-gazers and their corporate-racketeer friends might think they have Putin by the shorthairs by buying up Ukraine’s pipelines, but the guy who owns the gas (Gazprom) is still in the drivers seat. And he’s going to do what’s in the best interests of himself and his shareholders. Someone should explain to John Kerry that that’s just how capitalism works.

Washington’s policy in Ukraine is such a mess, it really makes one wonder about the competence of the people who come up with these wacko ideas. Did the brainiacs who concocted this plan really think they’d be able to set up camp between two major trading partners, turn off the gas, reduce a vital transit country into an Iraq-type basketcase, and start calling the shots for everyone in the region?

It’s crazy.

Europe and Russia are a perfect fit. Europe needs gas to heat its homes and run its machinery. Russia has gas to sell and needs the money to strengthen its economy. It’s a win-win situation. What Europe and Russia don’t need is the United States. In fact, the US is the problem. As long as US meddling persists, there’s going to be social unrest, division, and war. It’s that simple. So the goal should be to undermine Washington’s ability to conduct these destabilizing operations and force US policymakers to mind their own freaking business. That means there should be a concerted effort to abandon the dollar, ditch US Treasuries, jettison the petrodollar system, and force the US to become a responsible citizen that complies with International law.

This in an absolutely “perfect synopsis” of events currently unfolding in Ukraine….and you’ll have to appreciate the irony with respect to the “false flag” and the mysterious “Malaysian Jetliner now “downed” in Eastern Ukraine”…….a coincidence? A chance event?

I hardly think so.

Go Obama go – you moron!

Microsoft To Cut 18,000 Jobs – Recovery On!

Good morning everyone.

A little frustrated yet? ( Seriously……you can’t make this stuff up. ) Yet another “overnight session” with The Nikkei turned away at the top of this “every lasting range”, SP 500 “breaking its upward trendline” and EU stocks still weak – but hanging on.

Absolutely “agonizing price action” here during these low volume summer days.

Under any “normal circumstances” I’d be pushing the pedal to the metal here considering we are literally “on the cusp” of risk rolling over, and our correction taking place but…..these are certainly not “normal circumstances”. Volatility has been squashed as The Fed and our friendly Central Banks have literally “killed speculation”.

If in general I wasn’t so aggressive / willing to slug it out….some of the best advice I’d give ( at least for new comers ) would be to just keep positions small, and find a way to deal with this “psychologically” as……’s really come down to that.

This thing will have you question every single strategy, every single technical indicator and every single you “thought you knew” about trading. Don’t let it get to you. It’s a market condition “rarely seen” and it’s this way by design.

You’d have to imagine that “there really are no people” in the market right now.

With summer holidays in full swing, the general lack of volume, the “overly involved” Central Banks and of course the HFT machines….we’ve really just got “a bunch of computers trading small lots to one another” keepin the dream alive.

We threw fundamentals out the window some time ago.

It looks like Obama is gonna keep poking that stick into the “Russian bee hive” still looking to get some kind of reaction out of the cool , calm and collective Putin who continues to exercise patience. Careful there Obama……keep poking and you might just get stung.

Of course…..that’s what Obama is hoping for, as now it appears he will go  to the absolute lowest levels to provoke Russia, get his “war underway” and keep that reserve currency ponzi going as long as he possibly can. Careful there Obama.

Oh…..and Microsoft announcing they will cut 18,000 jobs this year.

Now if that’s not a sign of economic recovery I don’t know what is??

Kong Buys – Gold And Silver Miners Galore

I’ve started a small portfolio ( actually via Kong Senior up North with his “Canadian loonies” – Hey pop!) including the following names, and harken back to a post from the “grand productive days” before all this blogging and investing got so “serious”.


Mining – Could It Be In Our Genes?

Could the ancient astronaut theory hold true?

That thousands of years ago celestial visitors came to our planet in search of materials needed for their very survival – and in realizing the difficulties in extracting these materials from the ground, developed modern man to essentially do the hard work for them? When you really think about it…’s really not that far off.

As a young boy I remember a hoax that played out at my elementary school. A group of the older kids had painted a bunch of small rocks with gold model paint and hid them out in the sand of the school’s playground. Once the word got out….I recall the excitement and anticipation sitting there in my tiny desk, staring at the clock, squirming in my chair, waiting for the bell to ring. “Gold! Gold! – they’ve found gold in the playground!”.

We’d trip over ourselves racing out the door – eager to be the first to lay our hands on even the smallest spec of the glorious stuff. We spent hours on our hands and knees sifting, searching for our fortunes.

In the end…….I never found a single piece.

A silly young boy indeed –  but is it really any different now as adults?

Maybe mining is in our genes.

We’ll see how these little nuggets pay off here in a couple of months.


U.S Debt – A Ton Of Debt, A Pound Of Growth

The following article and series of charts / graphs should scare the living day lights out of you, if you don’t already have a general idea how artifically low interest rates and the “U.S debt situation” fit together.

Shocking when you consider that net interest costs will double in five years, and triple in eight.

So…….The Fed is gonna hold rates at zero forever then?


USD/JPY – A Pair You Can Learn From

We’ve discussed how important this pair is with respect to it’s “drive in equity markets” ( with JPY being sold/borrowed then converted to USD in order to purchase equities ) and it’s interesting to note that:

Regardless of whatever fluctuations we’ve now seen around Yellen’s “slightly more hawkish” comments….USD/JPY refuses to break higher thru the downward sloping trend line that has contained it for so long.

What would appear as “USD strength across the board” really only manifests as a couple pips rise in USD/JPY.

This is because strength in JPY is even GREATER. With both currencies taking inflows only JPY taking MORE creating a net result of USD/JPY falling “lower”.

This may appear counter intuitive as one might imagine “well USD is going higher….this pair should also be going higher right?” WRONG.

Understanding the fundamentals behind this pairs movement can tell you a lot about market’s appetite for risk as “USD will be converted BACK to YEN as U.S equities are sold.

A stronger Yen correlates to “weaker U.S Equities” near 95%.

Something to add to your toolbox if  it’s not already in there.

I’m adding short USD/JPY here at 101.63

Yellen Must Get Hawkish – Doves Will Cry

To garner even the tiniest amount of respect over the next few days….Janey Yellen “must” do something to forewarn markets / prepare investors for the inevitable “unwinding” – coming soon to a theatre near you.

It would be completely irresponsible for Yellen ( at this point ) to continue looking into the camera with those “beady little eyes”, suggesting that interest rates aren’t going up ( much sooner than markets are currently pricing in ) with the continued stance that “no bubbles are seen” and that all is going according to plan.

I believe it’s come to the point now…..where even the “just shut up and buy the dip / The Fed’s got your back crowd” would just as well get the signal here soon…….as they’ve pushed this about as far as “even they” think is possible.

Interest rates are on the rise much faster The Fed cares to make mention of, and this “playing dumb” act has about run it’s course.

I encourage everyone to take “extra special notice” over the next few days as to “what Yellen says” and more importantly “how markets interpret / react” as…..

If The U.S Fed had even the smallest shred of human decency ( which we already know it doesn’t ) now would be the time to “give the market a little heads up”.

The massive positions / time it takes to unwind has this so  ridiculously”one-sided” that without an appropraite amount of time… may just see everyone run for the exits all at once.

It’s 100% up to Yellen.

She can make this “somewhat orderly” or she can roll the dice another turn, and have this thing tank later.

That’s what I call a free market baby. That what I call – America!




Gold Bugs! – Here's Our Pullback!

Just fantastic.

The recent surge in gold now wiping out the “bottom pickers” and providing excellent long term opportunity across the board. This is the dip to be bought.

The price of Gold is now the exact same as it was back on May 14th! We’ve timed it perfectly, and haven’t missed a thing.

I’m still waiting for lower in both Gold, Silver as well the related mining stocks but as of today one can “offically” get it on their screens, and start creating those short lists.

EXK has always been a favorite of mine, but “it’s all gonna go” in the same upward direction once this pullback runs its course.

A blast from the past: Gold Going Down

You’d have to imagine that “letting gold out the basement” has some pretty braod sweeping implications…one being… that The Fed has losened the grip one can imagine that USD will also be allowed to move higher – as the “massive dilusion” will once again be masked with both Gold and USD moving higher medium term.





Second Quarter GDP – Reality Check Anyone?

The “advanced estimates” for U.S GDP ( gross domestic product ) are to be released on July 30th, and promise to bring with them a “flurry of market activity”, with traders, economists, analysts and speculators alike clambering to find an edge, and get positioned for the news.

I pose a simple question.

With first quarter GDP coming in with  a devastating contraction of  – 2.9% growth ( consider for a moment that is the worst quarterly GDP report in 5 years….those last 5 years with the Fed printing billions per month ) what on Earth could possibly have occurred in the past 3 months ( the second quarter of 2014 ) to not only make up for the massive loss, but to suggest anything close to “positive growth”?

You’d need to see a headline like ” Second Quarter Growth Sky Rockets! ” a whopping 4% to even consider the United States is “not” heading straight back into recession ( never left actually ).


What “magical changes” could possibly have taken place in the past 90 days to produce a second quarter GDP number that “doesn’t signify recession”?

Answer: None.

With “consumer spending” accounting for more than two-thirds of economic output, how can people making $7.25 per hour ( minimum wage ) or just under 1200.00 per month pre tax  be expected to buy anything other than beans / rice and “hopefully” keep a roof over their heads?

The false sense of wealth created by The Fed and its ponzi / racket in U.S Equities has done absolutely nothing to bolster further growth of the American economy, and soon…..yes soon……..chickens will be coming home to roost.

2nd Quarter GDP disappoints, and “maybe” it’s reality check time.




Central Banks To Pop Bubble – IBS Says Do It

With The Fed minutes being released this afternoon, it’s pretty fair to say we’ll be going “nowhere fast” here this morning. That’s fine – we’re used to that.

But I will be particularly interested in today’s “Fed minutes release” as something “very, very interesting” has developed here just recently.

The Bank of International Settlements ( also considered the “Central Bank of Central Banks” ) has “sounded the alarm” and has now more or less stated to its members to “pop this bubble now” to save yourselves even worse fallout later.

A few quotes from the recent report / statement:

Few are ready to curb financial booms that make everyone feel illusively richer. Or to hold back on quick fixes for output slowdowns, even if such measures threaten to add fuel to unsustainable financial booms,” …

“The road ahead may be a long one. All the more reason, then, to start the journey sooner rather than later.”

Apparently a few “intelligent people” at the IBS who see the clear disconnect in current market valuations and “reality” are now flat our suggesting that the World’s Central Banking Community “just get’s on with it” – and bring forward the downward leg of the cycle.

So…..that being said, I think it warrants “lending an ear” here this afternoon as to even the “smallest hints coming out of Washington” that perhaps The Fed may drop, in order to keep itself on the right side of public opinion, whilst planning the next phase of the inevitable “boom and bust cycle”.

As I’ve suggested to you “countless number’s of times” this cycle being stretched to 5.6 years of upward movement now, with no real evidence of economic recovery – 2 years moving lower is really just standard fair.

Here’s more: