China’s central bank is running out of ways to stem capital flight and faces a near impossible task trying to manage the fall-out from extreme credit growth, two of Asia’s most influential banks have warned.
“Defense of the currency by the People’s Bank (PBOC) is no longer a viable option,” says Eric Robertson, the head of global macro strategy for Standard Chartered.
Standard Chartered has been in the China since the 1850s and has over 6,000 staff in the country. Its warnings should not be taken lightly.
The Asia-focused lender says powerful forces are driving capital out of the country and the picture is fundamentally more disturbing than it was during last year’s devaluation panic. This is putting the PBOC in an invidious position as it attempts to deal with festering troubles in the banking system.
While the PBOC still has $3 trillion of foreign exchange reserves, they are not as large as they look given the scale of the financial pressures and the structure of the Chinese economy. The ratio of the M2 money supply to reserves has collapsed to a 15-year low and this may prove to be the crucial ratio in a confidence crisis.
One basic function of money is to serve as a store of value. Because the dollar and all of the other government fiat currencies (those without backing of real assets like gold and silver) have proven to be unreliable as a store of value, the dollar as a global currency is less useful and efficient than it should be.
The United States and most of the other developed countries have also been engaged in a global war on financial privacy, which in practice, means that governments are demanding access to everyone’s accounts and transactions.
Those who value their financial privacy as a way of protecting themselves from corrupt governments, institutions and individuals (and the criminal class) have a strong incentive to use private money-like products, such as bitcoin, which may provide them with more privacy.
On January 24, 1995, President Bill Clinton delivered his State of the Union address to a Joint Session of Congress. These remarks during the address received a standing ovation from all Democrats and Republicans alike:
You may have to watch that more than once to believe your eyes and ears. Meanwhile, what right-wing extremist xenophobic racist Islamophobe said this in response to Trump’s 90-day travel ban on citizens from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen?
“Kudos to President Trump for his brave decision. Trump banned the citizens of countries in the embrace of Iran and prevented the Iranians from entering. They can only be dealt with through preventive measures. It is not necessary for America to host backward people, it has received enough before. What would a Yemini, Iraqi, Iranian, Somali or a Syrian do in America? They have destroyed their countries, they should not destroy America.”
The answer is this man, Lieutenant General Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Police Chief of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
And so we launch into Week Two of Trump. The most fabulous news of the week? Just two words: Neil Gorsuch. He’s being touted as Scalia’s successor. Okay, but the truth is, he’s better than Scalia. Much better. Why? Just one word: Chevron.
There’s lots more… here we go.
Ereyesterday (01/31), I spoke at a meeting on Capitol Hill on Terrorism in the Balkans. Representatives from 13 European countries were present, together with several US Congressmen and Senators.
The presentations were focused on the threat of various Islamofascist groups such as ISIS and Iqwan (Moslem Brotherhood), plus lone wolf Salafis.
I decided to focus on something else. Here’s what I said:
‘Terrorism’ takes many forms. There is the horrific form of ISIS with publicized beheadings, the senseless slaughter of random ‘infidels,’ the infiltration of Moslem ‘refugees’ who proceed to demand Sharia law in non-Islamic lands.
There is another form of terrorism that I would like to address – and that is the purposeful undermining of democratic institutions within targeted countries, the destruction of a country’s culture and moral values, accomplished through bribery and corruption of a targeted country’s politicians, academia, and media.
This form of terrorism is more dangerously insidious than its Islamic counterpart – for it subverts a country’s own people to become traitors to themselves, to their own land, to their own culture, to their own values.
It is a form of terrorism that has no other motivation than nihilistic hate, no other goal but annihilation for the sake of annihilation, no other purpose but fascist totalitarianism for the sake of controlling other people’s lives.
The world’s number on perpetrator of this form of terrorism – which I call Fascist Subversion – is the world’s most evil billionaire, George Soros.
[This is the text of the President’s address delivered this morning – 02/02 – in Washington DC]
Thank you very much. It’s a great honor to be here this morning. And so many faith leaders -- very, very important people to me -- from across our magnificent nation, and so many leaders from all across the globe.
Today we continue a tradition begun by President Eisenhower some 64 years ago. This gathering is a testament to the power of faith, and is one of the great customs of our nation, and I hope to be here seven more times with you. (Laughter and applause.)
I want very much to thank our co-chairs, Senator Bowzman and Senator Coons, and all of the congressional leadership here.
I also want to thank my dear friend, Vice President Mike Pence, who has been incredible. (Applause.) And incredible wife, Karen.
But most importantly today, I want to thank the American people. Your faith and prayers have sustained me and inspired me through some very, very tough times.
All around America, I have met amazing people whose words of worship and encouragement have been a constant source of strength. What I hear most often as I travel the country are five words that never, ever fail to touch my heart. That’s: “I am praying for you.” I hear it so often -- “I am praying for you, Mr. President.” (Applause.)
“I have little interest in streamlining government or in making it more efficient, for I mean to reduce its size. I do not undertake to promote welfare, for I propose to extend freedom. My aim is not to pass laws, but to repeal them. It is not to inaugurate new programs, but to cancel old ones that do violence to the Constitution.”
What you are about to read explains the legal mechanism already in place by which this can be easily done. What Kim Strassel has written will blow you away with what is possible under a Trump Presidency guiding a GOP Congress. Barry Goldwater was the original American conservative hero. Somewhere, he is smiling right now.]
Last week (01/25), Todd Gaziano stepped into a meeting on Capitol Hill of free-market attorneys, think tankers and Republican congressional staff to unveil a big idea. By the time he stepped out, he had reset Washington’s regulatory battle lines.
Actually, more than reset. This is a true game-changer.
As a matter of strict objective fact, Donald Trump’s trade guru Peter Navarro is correct. Germany is the planet’s ultimate currency manipulator, not China.
The Euro – really a de facto Deutsche Mark – is indeed “grossly undervalued.” The warped mechanism of monetary union allows Germany to lock in a permanent ‘beggar-thy-neighbor’ trade advantage over Southern Europe, inflicting mass unemployment on the victim countries and blighting their futures.
Whatever you think of Peter Navarro’s trade philosophy regarding China, he is right that Germany’s chronic, huge, and illegal current account surplus - 8.8% of GDP - saps global demand and seriously distorts the world economy.
And now, President Trump is going to do something about it.
Lone wolf terrorism is the biggest trend in Islamic terrorism. Unlike classic Islamic terrorism, it requires no cells stretching across countries the way that 9/11 did. The perpetrators don’t even need to enter the country under false pretenses the way that the World Trade Center bombers did.
Classic counterterrorism is directed at organizations. It’s inadequate for stopping individual Muslim terrorists like Omar Mateen who was able to murder 49 people at a nightclub in Orlando or closely related duos like the Tsarnaev brothers in Boston or the Farook-Malik husband and wife team who carried out the San Bernardino terrorist attack which took the lives of 14 people.
The reason is simple. Unlike classic Islamic terrorism which required organization and infrastructure, the new brand of Islamic terror only needs one thing… Muslims.
Muslim immigration makes Muslim terrorism worse. Once we understand this inconvenient truth, then everything else naturally flows from it.
Long-simmering social tensions in Mexico are threatening to boil over as failing neoliberal reforms to the country’s formerly nationalized gas sector are compounded by open corruption, stagnant standards of living, and rampant inflation.
The U.S. media has remained mostly mute on the situation in Mexico, even as the unfolding civil unrest has closed the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego, California, for the last four weekends in a row.
Ongoing “gasolinazo” protests in Mexico over a 20 percent rise in gas prices have led to over 400 arrests, 250 looted stores, and six deaths. Roads are being blockaded, borders closed, and government buildings are being sacked. Protests have remained relatively peaceful overall, except for several isolated violent acts, which activists have blamed on government infiltrators.
The few mainstream news reports that have covered the situation blame rising gas prices but fail to examine several other factors that are pushing Mexico to the brink of revolution.