Tag Archives: Spain

Cyprus – The Waterloo of Eurocratic management or the ultimate catalyst for Euro zone growth?

3/18/2013 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

While the management of the ongoing banking crises on this side of the Atlantic has been dishonest, the management on the other side of the pond, or in today’s case, sea, has been an unmitigated disaster.  Or so it would seem.

We are talking about Cyprus.  For those who have yet to hear about Cyprus, it is an island nation located in the far eastern Mediterranean Sea, just below Turkey.  It is currently inhabited by a fiery mix of Greeks and Turks, who have lived in an uneasy peace with each other for some 40 years after the events that took place during the summer of 1974.

Like many island nations, Cyprus has been able to find common ground with those who have been unable to find common ground on the mainland.  It has found that it can leverage its sovereignty and willingness to bend the rules to offer banking services without the nagging regulations which increasingly plague banks and their clients in the Western nations on the mainland.

Now that the government of Cyprus is bankrupt and in need of a bailout, showing that even a tax and banking paradise can be poisoned by a bad currency, they have gone hat in hand to Belgium, a strange country in the north with absolutely nothing in common with Cyprus, save the currency in question.

The Eurocratic apparatus in Belgium, either on its own or at the behest of the global banking giants in Cyprus, has decided that the terms of the bailout, or “bail in”, which is the Euro friendly way to say “Corralito,” {Editor’s Note:  Corralito is the Argentinean term for when the Government decides to unilaterally make use of the funds in its country’s banks to fund the government because there is literally no one willing to lend them currency on any terms}, would be the direct confiscation of funds from depositors bank accounts in the form of a tax, in this case between 3 and 9.9% (because 10% just looks bad in print) to ultimately pay back the countries who have been generous enough to provide the funds, which, despite the technicalities involved, for most Europeans means Germany.

Predictably, the people of Cyprus, who caught wind of the confirmation of the rumors on Friday and awoke Monday to find that their government had declared what is, at this writing, an indefinite banking holiday (meaning banks and ATMs are closed) to prevent anyone who did not want to participate in the bail in from withdrawing their funds from the country’s banks, are channeling their anger at the German Embassy, quite naturally:

Henry Blodget has written a decent analysis on the details of the Cyprus bail in over at the Daily Ticker.  Blodget does a good job of analyzing the events up until the point where He presumes:

“…the moment depositors think that there is risk to their savings, they rush to banks to yank their money out.

That’s called a run on the bank.

And since no bank anywhere has enough cash on hand to pay off all its depositors at once, runs on the bank cause banks to go bust.

That’s what happened to hundreds of banks in the Great Depression.

And it’s what happened to Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers, and other huge banks during the financial crisis (though, with Bear and Lehman, the folks who yanked their money out weren’t mom and pop depositors but other big financial institutions). It’s what threatened to bring the entire U.S. financial system to its knees. And it’s why the U.S. and European governments have been frantically bailing out banks ever since.

But now, thanks to the eurozone’s bizarre decision in Cyprus, the illusion that depositors don’t need to yank their money out of threatened banks because they’ll be protected has been shattered.”

What Blodget presumes is that a bank run is bad for the bank.  Here at The Mint, we postulate that this tax on depositors is taken precisely for the benefit of the Cypriot banks.  Further, it has been taken not only for the benefit of the banks in Cypriot, but to serve as the catalyst for the Euro zone to return to growth, or the activities which pass as economic growth circa 2013.

How can this be?  To understand this will take a basic understanding of the banking revenue model.

Ever since 2008, the Federal Reserve and the ECB have been underwriting the banking sector by providing cheap cash to banks and, indirectly, the governments and people’s of their respective countries.  This is where Blodget’s parallel of today’s bank runs and those that occurred during the Great Depression falls apart.  For all of the mistakes that Ben Bernanke has made, the unconditional guarantee of liquidity in the banking system is the one that he will never relinquish, despite appeals to reason, for he mysteriously sees it as his life’s calling.

However, in an effort to stem the fall in asset prices, which is largely a product of the insane “jack the rate 25 basis points every month or so” policy that the Greenspan and Bernanke Fed followed from June 2004 until June 2006, the policy that caused markets to seize up like a car engine losing oil as they accelerated to record speeds, the Feds and the ECB have largely ignited an increase not in economic growth, but in bank deposits.

Bank deposits, far from being a boon to the receiving bank, are a huge problem when market conditions force them to reinvest (read lend out) those funds for rates that are unconscionably low (3.75% to consumers for 30 years, in a fiat currency system, are you out of your mind?).  Making matters worse, the consumers have been slow to take the bait, resulting in a big time squeeze on the traditional banking revenue model.

Enter Cyprus, an island that holds a disproportionate amount of bank deposits.  As a thinking Eurocrat, of which we suspect there are few, save Nile Farage, who is hunting for a way to both ensure that the banking revenue model continues to function, the government of Cyprus retains legitimacy, and that economic activity in the Euro zone will increase, the pile of Euros in Cypriot banks looks like a great target not to loot, as most analysis of the situation will paint this move as, but to force billions of Euros out of the digital vaults of the banking system to wash from the shores of Cyprus outwards into the other Euro zone countries in search of real goods, not simply another cash warehouse.

One sees the Eurocratic genius in the move at the moment one (again, that is you and I, fellow taxpayer) understands that the mere threat of a unilateral tax on deposits as a condition for a Euro zone bailout is causing lines to form at ATMs from Andalu to Cataluña, across the border into Torino and down to the lonely parts of Sicily.

Cyprus Flag
Will the Cyprus Misadventure by the catalyst for elusive economic growth in the Euro zone?

Within a matter of days, billions of Euros which were locked up in the accounts of villainous savers and otherwise useless to the European economy will be running around the Spanish and Italian streets in a desperate attempt to purchase anything real in which to hold said savings.

With what appears to have been a typically boneheaded Eurocratic move, the Eurocrats may have managed to do what Ben Bernanke and all of the helicopters in the world could not have done to the club Med economies:  Shower them with foolishly spent cash while at the same time bailing out both the banks and the governments as a grotesque side effect.

To be sure, it is a short term fix and will leave the Euro zone further down the scorched earth economy path in a matter of years.  Even so, you have to give the Eurocrats some credit for pulling out all the stops, even if they did stumble upon their ultimate stimulus, which relies upon their own stupidity to function, completely by accident.

Meanwhile in Cyprus, the latest is that the government wants to “think over” the terms of the bailout.  The formal vote has been postponed until Friday, and we presume that the banking holiday will remain in effect until after the vote is taken and any taxes are skimmed.

It is a hard assignment, and we do not envy them nor blame them for thinking it over.  The decision before Cyprus’ government officials is simple.  Should they accept the bailout, they face being blamed by their countrymen for sacrificing their parched island on the Eurocratic altar as well as spending the rest of their lives dodging the hit men of any oligarch’s who did not have sufficient forewarning of the move.

Should they reject the bailout, their government may even find a few contributions from said oligarchs to keep operating, and the only cost will be a few less German tourists on their shores, which, given the alternative, seems a small price to pay.

In the end, if our hunch is correct, the mere threat of corallito should be enough to stimulate the Euro zone.

Were we in their shoes, and we are glad we are not, we would reject the bailout.  Either way, it is a strong argument for exiting the formal banking system or becoming a large net creditor.  It is much easier for “crats” of any stripe to confiscate assets with a few keystrokes than for them to lift a finger to grab something in the real world.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for March 18, 2013 (PM)

Copper Price per Lb: $3.43
Oil Price per Barrel:  $93.79
Corn Price per Bushel:  $7.20
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.96%
FED Target Rate:  0.15%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,606 THE GOLD RUSH IS STILL ON!
MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  7.7%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.7%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  14,452
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,466,100,000,000 LOTS OF DOUGH ON THE STREET!
M2 Monetary Base:  $10,499,300,000,000

Adios Pesetas: A look back at adoption of the Euro in Spain

3/18/2013 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

The following is an essay written by a dear friend of ours, Tom Baker, in February of 2002.  Tom and his wife have lived in the region of Catalunya for a number of years.  His observations regarding the currency transition which was about to take place in Spain from pesetas to the full adoption of the Euro may prove timely if and when a similar event takes place in your locale.  Enjoy!

Adios pesetas

A major milestone has come to Europe with the introduction of the common currency known as euros.  Actually the Economic Union of 12 countries (Trivia question–can you name the 12 countries? answer below) has been on the euro standard for the last 2 years, with exchange rates fixed permanently between the currencies of the member countries.  Everyone was really using euros, but they just looked different in each country.

Now in the last month, the last major hurdle has been addressed with the withdrawal of all local currencies from circulation, and their replacement with euro coins and bills.  Think of the problems involved in changing the currency of 12 countries (approximately the size of the US) with 12 different monetary systems simultaneously.

Prices for goods have been posted in both pesetas and euros in the larger stores for the last year to accustom people to thinking in euros.  It isn’t easy-we have gotten used to valuing items in pesetas, and even though the euro is close to a dollar in value, that hasn’t helped much.  So it must be worse for those that have lived with pesetas all their lives.

Spanish FlagThe schedule is for 2 months of dual circulation, with only euros after that.  Now for some details of the tactics used.  Most cash registers are electronic and have been reprogrammed to handle both currencies.  Banks had kits of euro coins available in December for their customers so people could start getting used to the feel and appearance, but they could not be used until Jan 1.

The big change-over day (Jan 1) was of course very quiet, the major change being that most cash machines only dispensed euro bills.  Then the tactic to force the change-over was that customers could pay in either currency, but always received their change in euros.  So all the stores were sucking pesetas out of circulation.

It was a bit chaotic in the first week, with small merchants having to do the conversions on calculators.  Lots of mistakes were made, lots of people were confused, but the pesetas were disappearing briskly.  A few operations had problems with machines that accept coins, especially the toll roads.  So they decided to shut down the automatic coin machines until the conversion period is over, giving them time to convert them to euros.  If you want to pay cash, you have to give it to a human operator, otherwise use a credit card for automatic payment.EU-flag

The use of credit cards in general was encouraged to reduce the demand for change initially.  There were some shortages of coins, especially when the big traditional sales kicked in on Jan 8.  Now after a month of usage, the euros are seeming more natural and the prices are starting to make sense.  Pesetas have disappeared-all transactions are in euros now.

[A cartoon that I saw showed a bank robber at the counter, and the cashier asked if the transaction would be in pesetas or euros].

In our house, and I’m sure in most others, there was a sweep to collect all the pesetas and get them spent.  Then you find another coat pocket with a handful of coins, plus an envelope with French francs, another with Italian lira, etc.  There are cans with slots in all the banks for those last few stray pesetas to help children around the world.  We’re going to haul our francs to France for one last meal there before the pumpkin-hour.  The lira we sent with friends that are visiting Italy.

If you are holding on to European currency, send it to me immediately :-).  No, just kidding, but you do need to change it.  Bills you should be able to change at major banks until March 1 when all local currencies will disappear; after that you will have to change the money at the state bank in the country of the currency.  They predict that at least a third of the currencies will never be turned in.  That is pure gravy for the governments.

A side effect of the change-over is its effect on black money.  Spain and other areas of Europe have a sizeable underground economy, with all transactions in cash, not reported to the government for tax purposes.  Now some people are stuck with bundles of currency that will soon be unusable.  So the sales of luxury items skyrocketed in December, especially expensive cars.

Also there seemed to be a lot of money being poured into new construction, and housing prices have risen dramatically in the last year.  We will see if they subside in the coming year.  The government has promised to look into suspicious purchases of luxury items.  There were reports of Germans hauling carloads of marks into Switzerland.

On your next trip to Europe, you will find things much easier, with only one currency to carry unless you visit England, Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden, or Norway.  I wonder how much this will affect tourism into these countries?

The last thought is the number of colloquial sayings that will disappear from the language.  “No vale ni un peseta” = “It’s not worth even a peseta”.  The common words used for money were duros (5 pesetas, or like a nickel), and pelas (1 peseta).  These will disappear.

Euro coins:

1, 2, 5 Cents, Centims, Centimos-Copper colored
10, 20, 50  Cents-Gold colored
1, 2 Euros-Gold outer band, silver inner section

The “front” side of each coin is unique to each country, while the “back” side is common to all.

Euro Bills: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500

Euro countries:  Spain, Portugal, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Holland, Luxemburg, Belgium, Finland

We wish to thank Tom for allowing us to share his essay with you, our fellow taxpayers.  It is both an interesting, first hand look at a significant event in the history of world currencies as well as an instructive guide as to how one may prepare and what to expect should the monetary authorities in your locale choose to swap their existing national currencies for some flavor of supranational currency, such as the Euro.

At the time the Euro was adopted, it appeared to have a number of benefits for the adherents despite the minor inconveniences and sometimes painful price adjustments (we are told that the typical café, which before the Euro went for 100 pelas (see above) was immediately repriced up to a round 1 Euro (roughly 162 pesetas), an instant 62% increase) that were experienced in its adoption.

Now, some eleven years later, five of the countries on the above list have experienced significant economic distress, while others teeter on the fine line between growth and solvency.

It is important to note, however, that the countries that are now in distress experienced substantial economic booms related to the Euro adoption.  Their governments were allowed to borrow at rates which were aided by the strength of their European neighbor’s finances and, as Tom pointed out, the Central Banks made a windfall profit on the quasi confiscation of nearly 1/3 of the currency in circulation.

Was it worth it?  In terms of currency history, 11 years is a bit too soon to make a call, but either way, we have a feeling that a similar sort of currency “consolidation” awaits many in the not too distant future.  It will not be some sort of conspiracy, as many believe, but simply an attempt by the desperate governments of the world to shore up their ailing finances.

It will ultimately fail, but that time may be farther off than it seems.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for March 18, 2013

Copper Price per Lb: $3.51
Oil Price per Barrel:  $93.21
Corn Price per Bushel:  $7.16
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.01%
FED Target Rate:  0.14%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,596 THE GOLD RUSH IS STILL ON!
MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  7.7%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.7%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  14,496
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,466,100,000,000 LOTS OF DOUGH ON THE STREET!
M2 Monetary Base:  $10,499,300,000,000

A Happy Ending to the Euro 2012 and the Futility of European Elections

For the few who missed it, Spain handily defeated Italy yesterday, proving Moody’s wrong once again and making us 1-0 on Euro cup calls here at The Mint.  The Spanish national team, which has won each Euro and World Cup since 2008, will now go down as one of the greatest national teams of all time.

Spain downs Italy as The Mint goes 1-0 on its Euro 2012 prediction

The continent will now turn its weary eyes to the Olympic games, while those who can afford it prepare for their constitutionally guaranteed summer vacation (no kidding, the EU high court has held it as such).

Unfortunately for footballers and vacationers alike, Europe is operating in a perpetual crisis mode, and it is possible that vacationers will return to a Europe that is quite different than the one they left just 30 days before.  One in which their options are limited and their ATM card doesn’t work.

Yes, what started as a minor Hellenic financial problem has predictibly mushroomed into a political crisis at the highest level of the EU.  Voters, fed up with the bailout/austerity approach to banker welfare, increasingly exercise what is left of their sovereign right to vote out relative conservatives and/or moderates and vote in technocrats and/or populists as their fearless leaders.

Here is another prediction, for what its worth, the populists take Germany in the fall of 2013, Europe’s version of Mega Maid will have turned all the way from suck to blow.   The path of austerity that they are currently on will be but a faint memory as the ECB and policy makers move from bailing out the bankers to bailing out any and every political ally.

{Editor’s note:  A populist, for our purposes, is a socialist who no longer masquerades as a conservative or moderate, they are out of the closet, as it were.}

Yet for all the drama and human suffering that is unfolding, we can’t help but think that this is all simply a high priced publicity stunt to get the doomed Euro currency some air time.

For many of the European peoples, the Euro currency has served as nothing more than an unwanted crash course in math and an agent of larceny on the grandest of scales.  The average Jacque, Giorgos, Jorge, or Giovanni would have been better off in the long run had the Euro never been dreamed up.

Rising Populism in Europe to test the ECB’s commitment to elasticity

However, the continued use of the Euro is an extremely high priority to for a select few with addreses on Wall Street, in The City, and anywhere in Germany.  As such, the current tack for the doomed Euroship is for it to be spoken of in the same context as climate change or terrorism, which invariably involves an increasingly illogical and alarmist rhetoric.

The question of whether or not something should be done is glossed over in favor of handing supreme power to a body who demands that something be done.  The only rhetoric that is allowed beyond fear mongering is a discussion of what the supreme power should do.

And so it is with the Euro.

There will be a number of elections over the coming months in the Eurozone, and not one of them will matter.  The tone in Europe is turning decidedly populist, as George Friedman eloquently describes in his recent Geopolitcal Weekly report via Stratfor:

The Futility of European Elections

The only question that remains is whether or not the ECB will accomodate the populist agenda with an accomodative monetary policy.

Our guess is that they will, for populism has never been bound by fiscal restraint.

 

The Mint’s Euro 2012 prediction – Germany loses on all fronts

6/25/2012 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

After defeating Greece in the quarterfinals, Germany will now face Italy in the Euro semifinals and, if they are victorious in there, either Spain or Portugal in the finals.  If the 2012 Euro plays out according to the most recent soveriegn credit ratings, according to Moody’s, we should expect the following outcomes from the aforementioned teams:

Germany (Aaa) defeats Greece (Ca), which already occurred on Friday.  Spain (A3) would defeat Portugal (Ba3) on Wednesday, and Germany (Aaa) would come out a hair ahead of Italy (A3).

The Germany would then come out victorious after handling Spain on July 1.

However, as Italy showed England yesterday, poor credit ratings can be overcome on the pitch.  Therefore, we are speculating that Spain will defy Moody’s and take the cup.

Spain to defy Moody’s on the pitch

Ironically, a similar scenario is set to play out at the latest emergency EU summit (we have lost track but believe that there have been at least 14 prior to this one) where the Germans are set to capitulate on not only austerity measures but also restraint on monetary policy.

As unemployment in Europe’s club med regions rises, Germans and Europe in general will be keen to avoid a repeat of the rise of the Third Reich in their neighbors to the south.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for June 25, 2012

Copper Price per Lb: $3.36
Oil Price per Barrel:  $79.31

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.31
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.61%
FED Target Rate:  0.16%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,585 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  8.2%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  -0.3%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,503

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,192,300,000,000
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,933,900,000,000

Spain, Debt and Sovereignty via Stratfor

The EU’s direct Spanish bank bailout, while ostensibly averting the latest in a string of events which threaten to blow the Euro to smithereens, has now raised the question of moral hazard for German politicians.

The path forward, as we have discussed in this space before, leads to the elimination of national sovereignty for the countries unfortunate enough to have adopted the Euro.

George Friedman discusses the scenarios which may unfold as the Eurozone inches closer to implementing their ultimate solution to the continent’s debt crisis: The Eurobond

Read the full essay here:

Spain, Debt and Sovereignty

Spain, Inc., the latest proof of Anarchy in action, an Impromptu Manifesto

6/11/2012 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

When we attended graduate school in Spain, we were the first North American student in our course.  It was late 2003 and the Eurozone was full of optimism.  This optimism lead some of the professors to use a portion of their class time taunt the US model as failed and the European model as the obvious way forward.

As proof of European supremacy, our Finance professor often made a point of mentioning to us that the yields on the Spanish 10yr bond were almost the equivalent to the yields on the US 10yr bond.

What a difference nine years and 500 basis points make.

Circa 2012, Spain dominates the financial headlines as the latest casualty of the European debt crisis.  Apparently Spain now is in need of a bailout.  The bailout strategy which will be employed by Spain, Inc. is a hybrid of the prior bailouts accepted by their counterparts, Greece, Inc. and Ireland, Inc.

Greece, Inc. required a bailout because its government was broke.  Ireland, Inc. was slightly more ingenious in that it made a good faith effort to backstop its banks, only to find that it was now the entity which required a backstop.  Spain, Inc, theoretically learning from both experiences, forced its banks to accept the backstop directly so that the Spanish government could save face and be spared the humiliation of the Irish scenario.

Unfortunately, the markets have seen through the charade and are now putting pressure on all bonds, bank or sovereign, which hail from the Iberian Peninsula.

What a difference nine years and 500 basis points make!

Spain’s strategy has failed before it was even implemented for lack of collateral and credibility, both of which are in desperately short supply amongst the EU leadership.

How did once proud Europe end up in this situation?  They decided to force a debt based currency integration by integrating only the currency part of the equation and leaving the debt and fiscal matters to chance.

As if choosing to use a debt based currency weren’t bad enough, choosing only to implement the currency is like handing the nations foolish enough to engage in such a gamble the revolver in a game of Russian roulette where the revolver is fully loaded.

Now, the revolver is being passed and it is Spain’s turn.  Once Spain slumps to the floor, it is Italy’s turn, the Belgium, France, etc. until the European Currency Union, doomed from its outset, breathes its last.

At some point in the process, possibly as Spain pulls the trigger, USA, Inc. will be forced to step in with the “ultimate” backstop, the final hope of the failed, insane “debt is money” currency regime.  As the US throws its sovereign credit rating in front of the runaway freight train of Europe’s soveriegns, it will quickly find itself in the very situation that it is trying to save the European Sovereigns from.

For in this debt crisis, the unwritten rule of quality holds.  When one adds wine to sewage, one gets sewage.  When one adds sewage to wine, one gets sewage.  The sovereign vats have long since been polluted.  It might make sense to check one’s portfolio and remove as much sewage as possible.

Beyond that, we will present two unsolicited yet practical bits of advice.  First, US Bonds will ultimately slide as USA, Inc. wades across the pond to aid Europe.  The Euro currency will rally as the run on European banks by the citizens and the wholesale dumping of any bond denominated in the currency begins.  Quite simply, demand for the Euro will exceed supply in the short term.

Plan accordingly.

We submit to you that the Spain, Inc. debacle is further evidence of one of The Mint’s central themes, that Anarchy is man’s reality, it is an ultimate given, it simply is, and all understanding of the current political and social structures is greatly facilitated by one’s acceptance of this fact.

In fact, one’s ability to act and react to the unfolding changes in the current political and social structures depends upon accepting and embracing Anarchy as the basis for reality and learning to operate in the Truly Capitalistic system which organically emerges as men learn anew that mutual trust and cooperation are in their rightly understood self interests, and that he who is to lead must truly become the servant of all.

To truly embrace this fact, we must understand the nature of mankind.  Man, left to his own devices, is completely devoid of the ability to do the right thing.  He doesn’t have it in him.  He is lazy, self-serving, and completely evil.  He needs God and his fellow man to be able to do anything productive, altruistic, or what may be considered remotely good.  A full defense of this statement is a subject for another day (although the evidence is all around us), we mention it here only to underscore the necessity of a framework which presupposes this fact within which mankind can use this weakness to avoid both self and mutual destruction.

The only reliable framework which has emerged out of natural Anarchy which not only addresses the problem of human nature, but also turn man’s weaknesses into strengths is what we call True Capitalism.  Ironically, by allowing market forces to work with as little hindrance as possible, mankind can insulate itself from descending into chaos and catastrophe.

In fact, to fight the workings of True Capitalism is, by default, to submit oneself to chaos and misery.  Yet every nation on the planet is devoted to some degree in the fight against True capitalism.  Why?  Because the nation state sells itself as the most perfect expression of man’s good intentions, which we presuppose do not exist.  In other words, the dream of the nation state is built on a false pretense that is usually attributed to socialism: That man is inherently good and wants to do good to others.

Given their presuppositions, is it clear that the nation state and a truly capitalistic society are, in fact, the antithesis of one another.  Where a nation state regulates by edict,  truly capitalistic society regulates by example.  Where a nation state is rigid, where  truly capitalistic society is pliable.  Hence, where  truly capitalistic society will bend but not break, the nation state is repeatedly smashed to pieces when faced with change.

For the more a nation state tries to force men to do good, the more mankind’s character flaws will overtake these good intentions until the nation state becomes an expression of mankind’s evil nature.

The truly capitalistic society allows each mans evil nature to be corrected by allowing him to experience the consequences of his inherently poor behavior, paradoxically and naturally improving the behavior and norms of all.

Moving to a less philosophical level, how can we be sure that Anarchy is the basis of man’s current existence?  The evidence can be found in that the institutions which supposedly offer the best option to Anarchy, the nation states if the world, are beginning to succumb to the punishments they have built up in their losing fight against natural law.

Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Italy, and now Spain, Inc. are now succumbing to the inevitable.  The member of club med which turns from the failure of the Euro currency to go it alone and embrace the much feared “Anarchy,” as it were, paradoxically stands to be richly rewarded by the flocks of tourists who can suddenly afford a European vacation without the Euro.

We conclude with a brief manifesto for your perusal and enjoyment.  What does the future hold?

Out of Anarchy, a Truly Capitalistic System will ORGANICALLY emerge, and with it a new dawn for humanity, built on mutual interest and almost endless capital formation which will engender a spontaneous and dynamic social order, a society without borders that would enjoy freedom and prosperity that we cannot even imagine under current conditions.

Believe.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

Key Indicators for June 11, 2012

Copper Price per Lb: $3.35
Oil Price per Barrel:  $81.49

Corn Price per Bushel:  $5.92
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.60%
FED Target Rate:  0.16%  ON AUTOPILOT, THE FED IS DEAD!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,596 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  8.2%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.0%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,411

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,306,000,000,000
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,790,100,000,000

They told me a year had passed

We invite you to enjoy a bit of poetry about our time in Barcelona and Spain this Friday afternoon.  Have a great weekend and stay fresh!

They told me a year had passed

By David Mint

 

I sat on the terrace in Les Planes,

Staring blankly at the wooded hills

Beyond the train station

Pondering all that had occurred

 

I’d arrived in the dead of winter,

Without expectations,

Without plans,

completely unprepared

 

I’d resisted the change,

Defiant,

Trapped in my ways,

Until the day that I was broken

 

At the point of death,

I sat waiting at Sant Pau,

And soiled myself,

Shortly after I’d been called

L'hospital de Sant Pau

As I lay in the dungeon,

Of the modernist gem,

Life dripped back into my veins,

Yet only to a point

 

I arose,

A changed man,

A blank page,

Humbled

 

I was free to travel,

Learn,

Serve,

And to love

 

Free to explore,

 Llançà, Huesca

Contra Corriente, El Lokal, L’Estudi,

Les Heures, Ligonde

 

Yet it is the people,

The love,

The Spirit which we share,

That remains

 

I met my true love,

Now this dream will never end,

We march forward and do not look back

Two becoming one,

 

I sat on the terrace in Les Planes,

Staring blankly at the wooded hills

They told me a year had passed,

And I did not believe them

Waiting on Armageddon in the Bond Markets, A Freaky Chart form the BIS

7/18/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

We are taking the week off here at The Mint.  As the world observes the pitched battle between default and inflation, we will be roaming the cornfields of Northeastern Nebraska waiting to attend a cousin’s wedding.

To default or not to default, that is the question.  The financial world is on the edge of its seats waiting for the answer.  What will congress do?

Regular Mint readers know that once QE started, the US essentially defaulted.  Everything that is happening now is a mere attempt to avoid openly admitting it.

There has been a startling graph from Bank of International Settlements that has been circling the internet and is worth a look.  You may want to ask the children to leave the room, it is downright scary.

"AAA" Government dominates the market and it is beginning to smell funny!

Do you now understand why what happens in Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Italy and the US in the coming weeks is of the utmost importance for the bond markets?  In a very short period of time, sovereign debt issues have become predominant.  The scary part of the chart is that any sane person can tell you that there simply ain’t that much AAA rated paper out there, no matter who issues it or who rates is.

With what is sure to be an action packed week as the financial world braces for the next of its many brushes with Armageddon.  Not matter what happens, the only clear winner promises to be the volatility index (which you can conveniently trade as VIX).  If there truly is the threat of a default, try TBT, the Ultrashort US Treasuries EFT.

Better yet, head down to your local coin shop, load up on physical Gold and Silver, and come roam the cornfields with us, worry free!

Stay Fresh,

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

P.S. If you enjoy or at least tolerate The Mint, please share us using the buttons at the top of this post. If you feel that you can’t go another day and risk missing The Mint, please register by clicking here. Thank you!

Key Indicators for July 18, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.39
Oil Price per Barrel: $97.12
Corn Price per Bushel: $7.01
10 Yr US Treasury Bond: 2.91%
FED Target Rate: 0.06% JAPAN HERE WE COME!
Gold Price Per Ounce: $1,594 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY
MINT Perceived Target Rate*: 2.00%
Unemployment Rate: 9.2%
Inflation Rate (CPI): 0.2%
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 12,479 TO THE MOON!!!
M1 Monetary Base: $2,027,500,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base: $9,265,600,000,000 YIKES!!!!!!!

*See the MINT Perceived target Rate Chart. This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy. This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

Italians to join Europe’s needy, the parable of the Chiropractor

7/11/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

Investors woke up today and wasted little time in marking down Italian sovereign debt, along with Spanish and Portuguese debt issues.  Why?  The story of the Italians is eerily similar to that of the Greeks, the Portuguese, and the Spanish.  Their government spends more than it takes in.

At this point, all readers of The Mint know that it is impossible for any Government to produce value.  Yet somehow, in our upside down, insane monetary system, it has become acceptable for the western governments to run a reasonable deficit to help pay for their role as the Robin Hood in the current welfare state model.  The European Union even went so far as to attempt to define what constitutes a reasonable deficit as 3% of a nation’s GDP per year.

Now if the government takes in 25% of national income in the form of taxes, which is not an unheard of (if anything it is a low estimate) and then borrows an additional 3% (which has proved an elusive target), then 28% of the welfare state’s economy is devoted to income “redistribution.”

While the term “income redistribution” does not fly well with most voters, the Government’s “investment” decisions are cleverly disguised as Social Security, Health Care, Defense, and Education.  Most will recognize that these are important investments, which leads us to the logical question:

Why leave these investment decisions up to the Government?

This question is rarely asked, and most seem content to let the Government continue in their collective role as Robin Hood.  It should come as no surprise, then, that a great deal of time and what would otherwise be productive energy goes into influencing Robin Hood’s decisions as to whom the poor are at the moment.  Bill Bonner at The Daily Reckoning calls this outsized effect of Government in the economy a “Zombie Takeover.

With the Zombies creatively destroying a minimum of 28% of GDP in a modern welfare state, perhaps it is a testament to the resilience and productivity of the citizenry that any real progress can be made under such circumstances.

Fortunately (or unfortunately for those in the zombie class) the insanity is coming to an end.  As the government’s destruction of wealth accelerates, even elected officials will have to admit that the bad decisions that all of this accumulated debt represents do not go away just because one denies that they exist.

In fact, attempts to solve the problem of too much debt by creating more currency are futile, as each unit of currency creates a unit of debt which must be dealt with at a later date.  This is the glory of modern monetary theory.  It binds the world together in slavery.  It is also its Achilles heel, which is now exposed, waiting to be stricken.

How and when will this finally occur?  It will be like the man with back pain who finally goes to visit the chiropractor.  The gradual spinal realignment that he had hoped to achieve by doing simple stretching exercises (austerity) is not taking place, in fact, his back problems have gotten worse.  Once in the exam room, he will be laid down swiftly on the chiropractor’s table.

Then chiropractor will move into place, interest rates will rise, and a series of pops will go off in the patient’s spine.  Naturally, the popping sounds are the troubled EU nations defaulting on their sovereign debt in unison, which is what is about to occur.

Will the patient then get up and go on his way, sore but better off for the treatment?  Or perhaps the better question is; do zombies even use chiropractors?

Meanwhile in the US, the political theater that is the debt ceiling negotiations may be the catalyst that sends the US Treasury market into a much deserved tailspin.  We have speculated about this almost incessantly and still cannot believe that it may happen.

But while the EU goes to the chiropractor, the US may prefer to rely on the prescription drugs of fiscal and monetary stimulus for as long as they appear to work in a futile attempt to reassure the zombies that all is well.

The US will simply destroy the value of the currency, completely and irreversibly.  Why else would they pick a fight with Iran at this point?

That makes each dollar that one holds like holding an M80 firecracker with a lit fuse.

How long will you hang on?

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email: davidminteconomics@gmail.com

P.S.  If you enjoy or at least tolerate The Mint, please share us using the buttons at the bottom of this post.  If you feel that you can’t go another day and risk missing The Mint, please register by clicking here.  Thank you!

Key Indicators for July 11, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.32
Oil Price per Barrel:  $94.99

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.81
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.92%

FED Target Rate:  0.07% JAPAN HERE WE COME!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,554 PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.00%
Unemployment Rate:  9.2%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.2%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,506 TO THE MOON!!!
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,020,000,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,112,300,000,000 YIKES!!!!!!!

*See the MINT Perceived target Rate Chart.  This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy.  This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

72 Hour Call for June 30, 2011

Today’s Call:  NO CALL, taking a break as we revert to the mean.

Rationale:  As you can see, our calls are reverting to the mean.  It has occurred to us that many of our bad calls end up panning out after the 72 hour time period.  We are going to start a new service based on our findings during this experiment which will give position entry and exit recommendations.  Thank you for watching this space and stay tuned!

Result of Call for June 27, 2011:  Spain 5yr Credit Default Swap to rise.  Was 315.20, Currently 269.70.  Bad Call.

Calls to Date:  Good Calls: 32, Bad Calls: 29, Batting .525

Key Indicators for Thursday, June 30, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.26
Oil Price per Barrel:  $94.98 A FAILURE TO INFLATE, WILL TREND LOWER

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.29   MONETARY POLICY IS NOT WORKING
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  3.16% WITH THE FED OUT, THE SKY’S THE LIMIT
FED Target Rate:  0.07%  JAPAN HERE WE COME!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,500 BENEFITING FROM PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.25%
Unemployment Rate:  9.1%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.2%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,414  WINDOW DRESSING FOR 401K PORTFOLIOS
M1 Monetary Base:  $1,954,300,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,098,400,000,000 YIKES!!!

*See the MINT Perceived target Rate Chart.  This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy.  This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

72 Hour Call for June 27, 2011

Today’s Call:  Spain 5yr Credit Default Swap to rise.  Currently 315.20.

Rationale:  Spain has been out of the news for some time as Greece’s debt problems have taken center stage.  However, the chance of increasing unrest along with the realization that banks will likely have to roll over existing sovereign debt in Europe will likely raise risk premiums on all sovereign debt, with Spanish debt being one of the more vulnerable.

Result of Call for June 22, 2011:  Yield on 10 US Treasury to fall, price to rise.  Was 2.99%, Currently 2.93%.  Bad Call.

Calls to Date:  Good Calls: 31, Bad Calls: 27, Batting .534

Daily Default:  Los Angeles Dodgers

Key Indicators for Monday, June 27, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.07
Oil Price per Barrel:  $91.30 A FAILURE TO INFLATE

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.60   MONETARY POLICY IS NOT WORKING
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.93%
FED Target Rate:  0.08%  UH OH!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,497 BENEFITING FROM PERMANENT UNCERTAINTY

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.25%
Unemployment Rate:  9.1%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.2%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,044
M1 Monetary Base:  $1,895,400,000,000 RED ALERT!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,086,900,000,000 YIKES!!!

 *See the MINT Perceived target Rate Chart.  This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy.  This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

The Bill for Club Med comes due (the concept of Central Bankruptcy eloquently explained), a Parable

5/31/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

Today the focus of the financial world is on events around the Mediterranean where the Greek and increasingly the Spanish people again find themselves at odds with their respective governments and their IMF / ECB / German debt collectors. 

How did they get there?  The Greeks and arguably the Spanish have been living in the social equivalent of a Club Med ever since they joined the Euro.  The initial sting of higher prices was offset for most by lower borrowing costs.  Life was good.  The advent of the Euro along with a boom in tourism began to feed a property boom in Spain and a government spending boom in Greece.

Alas, as an economy slows, the government is usually the last to know. 

Like the father whose family takes a vacation to Club Med, he is content to let the family splurge with little worry as to how he will cover the bill.  “Just throw it on the credit card, we’ll take care of it later” becomes the mantra.

Unfortunately for the father (who represents the Greek, Spanish, and arguably the US governments in our parable), his bank decides to cut his credit line just before the vacation is over.  The bill comes due and the man frantically negotiates with his bank (the ECB, IMF, and arguably the US FED) to extend his credit line enough to cover the bill. 

Club Med – Paradise Lost!

To make matters worse, upon his return the man finds that the income from his job (the government’s tax receipts in our parable) has been cut due to “the economy*.”  He now has no realistic prospect of repaying his extended credit line and instead must now consider a painful reduction in the family’s standard of living.

Naturally the family, who has developed some expensive habits while away at Club Med, rebels.  The father is now in a no win situation.  On the surface, he appears to have a choice between satisfying his family at the expense of his creditors or vice versa.

In reality, with his reduced income, he cannot satisfy either of them.  This is where the Greek and Spanish governments currently find themselves, and this is where the US Government will soon find itself.

There is, of course, an easy way out.  The man who is in this hopeless situation can declare bankruptcy.  Problem solved, right?  Not so fast.  You see, because of “the economy*,” the bank cannot release the man from his debts and have enough money to make good on its own obligations.

At this point, the Central Banks of the world (which are represented by the bank in our parable) lack not only the credibility but also the practical tools to perform their make believe function as protectors of the value of their respective currencies.

Today we read a piece by Michael Pento of Euro Pacific Capital (run by Peter Schiff) which seems to give logical credence to what we have long suspected to be the case:

“In the end, any meaningful attempt to withdraw liquidity will not only bankrupt the institution (The FED) but also zero out their remaining credibility. That’s why they’ll never even make an honest attempt.”

 The FED is helpless to remove the liquidity it has injected and will soon have to decide which of its member banks to sacrifice if the dollar is to continue as a functioning currency.  Our money is on the dollar and all who rely on it as a store of value to be the sacrificial lambs.

Back to our parable.  Both the man and the bank will continue to pretend to negotiate with each other, giving the illusion that what is now their mutual problem will supernaturally disappear.  The family will continue to pretend to debate which expenditures to cut back on as if it will make a difference.

Unfortunately, the likelihood of the problem disappearing is equivalent to the likelihood of the family being able to go back in time to cancel their trip to Club Med prior to departure.  Such is the nature of debt.

So the bank, the father, and the family find themselves clinging to a myth as they helplessly hurtle towards the unknown.

Where will they end up?

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email:  davidminteconomics@gmail.com

*Definition of “the economy”, circa 2011 – A term used to describe the large scale collapse of Central Banking and the Socialist / Communist economic model that it has created over the past 100 years.  Generally used by politicians and others in authority to “explain” why they cannot pay their obligations.  This explanation is presented to the masses as a failure of capitalism when quite the opposite is true.  Thus, this simple two word phrase is used as an excuse to further the Socialist / Communist agenda and that of the police state that is forming all around the world.

Key Indicators for Friday, May 31st, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.17
Oil Price per Barrel:  $102.83

10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  3.05%
FED Target Rate:  0.09% FED IN DESPERATION MODE!!!!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,534

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.25% INFLATION HERE WE COME!!!!
Unemployment Rate:  9.0%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.4%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,579
M1 Monetary Base:  $1,892,800,000,000 THE CRACK-UP BOOM BEGINS!!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,036,600,000,000 MORE FUEL FOR THE CRACK-UP BOOM!!!!

 *See FED Perceived Economic Effect Rate Chart at bottom of blog.  This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy.  This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

Grants for Democracy? It’s Getting Ugly in Spain, US Housing Capitulates, Greek Government to Default on Austerity and then Simply Default

5/27/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

We’ve said it before, things are beginning to happen at a rapid pace and the authorities are absolutely and completely helpless to do anything about it.  Not for lack of money, have you, for they are second in line behind the banks to pick at the money tree.  No, the authorities lack the one thing that is indispensable to getting things done.  Credibility.

Have things improved for you, fellow taxpayer?  Unless you are a banker, lobbyist, are a contractor who works for a banker or lobbyist, the answer is probably no.

And we haven’t even begun to talk “austerity” on US shores.

But first, we are obligated to take a peek at what the G-8 is doing.  We suspect we know but it is important to confirm ones suspicions.

From the Associated Press:

DEAUVILLE, France (AP) — Rich countries and international lenders are aiming to provide $40 billion in funding for Arab nations trying to establish true democracies, officials said at a Group of Eight summit Friday.

Officials didn’t fully detail the sources of the money, or how it would be used, but the thrust was clearly to underpin democracy in Egypt and Tunisia — where huge public uprisings ousted autocratic regimes this year — and put pressure on repressive rulers in Syria and Libya.

We suspected more aid to someone but this appears even more misguided than we thought.  The first line of the second paragraph is especially laughable but you can see where this is going.  We speculated Wednesday about the events in Palestine getting ready to take center stage, largely as a distraction to the “utter and complete collapse” of the world’s current financial system.

The G-8 is now throwing what is left of their credibility into extending their influence in the Middle East.  They have Iraq, Afghanistan, and now Egypt and Tunisia as footholds.  Will they be strong enough to hang on to this newfound influence?  Only time will tell if the new regimes can be bribed as easily as the old ones.

The credibility of the Western Governments and their worn out welfare state economic models is nearly spent.  In Greece, the IMF / Eurozone bailout participants are finding out that the Greek politicians don’t have the collective stomach to play the repo man on their countrymen’s future.

It appears that the government is refusing more austerity measures and is rethinking whether or not this whole Euro adventure is such a good idea.  Failure to agree now places the spotlight on the IMF / Eurozone plunge protection team.  Will they have the stomach to let Greece default?

The gauntlet has been thrown down, and what happens to Greece will set the tone for how the inevitable sovereign defaults of the Western Governments are likely to play out.  Are the Greeks the Lehman Brothers of Sovereigns?

On the other side of the world, Japan’s sovereign debt was officially downgraded as if to underscore the fact that the world monetary system is hurtling towards a catastrophic failure.

Back in Europe, a sequel to the Greek experience is now playing itself out across the Mediterranean Sea on the Iberian Peninsula.  The youth in Spain are finally arising as they clearly see that the politicians have shamelessly “handed their future” to the nation’s banks.

With protests in nearly every major city, their resolve grows with every passing day.  In Barcelona, one day before Barça plays for the Champions Cup against Manchester, the authorities attempted to clear Plaça Catalunya to clean it in anticipation of the celebrations that would surely take place there when Barça, led by the great Liionel Messi, wins the cup.

With over 100 persons injured between protestors and police officers, they will now have to clean up blood in the square.  The Spanish authorities, not unlike their western peers, just don’t get it.  The old way of doing things is over, fini.  The youth are taking matters into their own hands.  With 45% of the Spanish youth unemployed, their sheer numbers, if they stay at it, will simply overwhelm the authorities.

All the same, we are pulling for Barça tomorrow.

A final piece of news to share with you here at The Mint, the US Housing Market has finally capitulated. In other words, it is now safe to buy a house.  The hope that the US Government and Central Bank could somehow revive this market has left town on the same train as the US Government’s credibility.

The US Government lost its credibility most recently as it continues to bicker over meaningless spending cuts as the nation thunders towards an imminent default on its sovereign debt and by affirming the Unconstitutional Patriot Act, which essentially gave legislative authority for the US to become the wards of an international police state.

The brave souls who gave their lives to create and protect a free America must be rolling over in their graves this Memorial Day.

Will there be a generation brave enough to reclaim it?

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email:  davidminteconomics@gmail.com

P.S.  Please check out our latest 72 Hour Call at www.davidmint.com

Key Indicators for Friday, May 27th, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.16
Oil Price per Barrel:  $100.74

10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  3.06%
FED Target Rate:  0.09% FED IN DESPERATION MODE!!!!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,537

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  2.25% INFLATION HERE WE COME!!!!
Unemployment Rate:  9.0%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.4%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,441
M1 Monetary Base:  $1,892,800,000,000 THE CRACK-UP BOOM BEGINS!!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,036,600,000,000 MORE FUEL FOR THE CRACK-UP BOOM!!!!

 *See FED Perceived Economic Effect Rate Chart at bottom of blog.  This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy.  This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

Greece to exit Euro and Palestine to take Center Stage

5/25/2011 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

If the events of the past week have not convinced you that there has been a permanent, fundamental change in the financial markets, perhaps nothing will.  As much as the numbers seem to stay the same, one has the sense that something is very, irreparably, wrong.

Trust that sense.

If you are trying to put your finger on what is causing the uneasiness you are feeling, allow us to offer our humble opinion.  The world is coming to the realization that all of the financial rescue programs that have been floated as the “cure” to the financial crisis by various Central Banks and Governments have done nothing useful. 

To put it harshly, they have not only failed, they have made things worse.

What they have done is to buy time for the banks to sell out of their losing positions and be made whole at the taxpayers’ expense.  Now, the jig is up.

The taxpayers see that the fix is in and are calling for the heads of their elected officials.  For the most part, the heads have been handed over peacefully via democratic elections.  Those that still have their heads are quickly backpedaling and distancing themselves from any Government sponsored bailouts.

With the resolve of the Governments of the west to continue “bailing out” the financial sector clearly in doubt, the heavy lifting is left to the ultimate and most deserving scapegoats, the central banks.

But what can they do?  Their only solution involves further exposing themselves for the fraud they are.  “If the central bank can simply print the money to pay debts, why should I work?” is the cry from the Proletariat.

That cry is being heard steadily in Greece and now Spain.

Austerity Protests in Athens today courtesy of occupiedlondon.org

It has taken a different tone in the Arab world, where revolution has increasingly been the rule ever since the Gregorian calendar turned to 2011.  The media explains what is happening in the Middle East as a “cry for democracy,” as if all of these people would be appeased if they could simply have the pleasure of voting for their dictator, as we do in the west.

No, the Middle East is burning due to the confluence of 1,300 years of festering hatred which for the past 90 years has had the Israeli / Palestinian conflict as its flashpoint and rapidly rising prices for basic necessities, which have always been dear in the desert regions.

These rising prices, of course, are the direct result of the debauchery of the currencies by western central banks.

From our vantage point, it is clear that the central banks have no more room to maneuver and that they will soon throw in the towel as well.  Central banking as we know it is expiring.

So who will bail out the western governments and central banks?  The taxpayers who have grown to loathe them?  Don’t count on it.  The simple answer is that no one will.  What logically follows is that the world is about to embark upon an amazing journey called “price discovery.”  A journey that has been delayed for three long years by the meddling of the authorities will now begin without further delay.

One of the first discoveries will be to find out what are Greek Bonds are worth.  Nobody really knows, but unofficially the 10 year note is trading at 51 cents on the dollar.  And now the barbarians from the north are storming down demanding that the Greeks make good on their austerity measures or else lose their support which would mean an almost immediate default by the Greeks.

But with riots becoming a way of life, the Greeks are beginning to wonder aloud whether or not the pain is worth it.  Our guess is that the barbarians will relent in an attempt to save the Euro.  You see, the Greeks still hold the ultimate trump card, as do we all, of defaulting on their debt and doing business in another currency.  For the Greeks, it would mean a return to the drachma.

Will they play it?

With the utter and complete failure of the world financial system at hand, those who soberly decided not to heed Harold Camping’s rapture warning and are looking forward to a world that will exist post October 21.  We believe that the world will increasingly turn their collective attention to Palestine.

We recently read The Haj in an attempt to beef up our understanding of the conflict.  You can read our review of this book at https://davidmint.com/?p=361.

The summary is that Palestine needs a miracle for there to be peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians.  This conflict will move to center stage as a distraction to the aforementioned utter and complete failure of the world financial system.

What has become crystal clear to us over the past two months is that if there is not peace in Jerusalem, there cannot be peace in the world.  Those of us who believe in Jesus (if you do not, please accept this as an invitation to believe) will not be raptured until there is peace in Jerusalem.   We do not know exactly why, we simply know that this is true.

For if there is peace in Jerusalem, there will be peace in our hearts.

Once we are raptured, the tribulation will begin, which is why we urge you to accept Jesus now.  You have nothing to lose and eternity to gain.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint

Email:  davidminteconomics@gmail.com

P.S.  Please check out our Affiliates!

Key Indicators for Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Copper Price per Lb: $4.10
Oil Price per Barrel:  $101.47

10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  3.13%
FED Target Rate:  0.10% FED IN DESPERATION MODE!!!!

Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,526

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  3.25%
Unemployment Rate:  9.0%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.4%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  12,395
M1 Monetary Base:  $1,880,400,000,000 THE CRACK-UP BOOM BEGINS!!!!
M2 Monetary Base:  $9,011,900,000,000 DESPERATION!!!!

 *See FED Perceived Economic Effect Rate Chart at bottom of blog.  This rate is the FED Target rate with a 39 month lag, representing the time it takes for the FED Target rate changes to affect the real economy.  This is a 39 months head start that the FED member banks have on the rest of us on using the new money that is created.

Michael Deejay

Fuimos muy afortunados al estar en Barcelona, en el barrio Clot, mientras Dios empezó obrar en la iglesia que se llama El Lokal.  Uno de los integrantes era el Gran Michael Deejay.  Para mi, el definó tecno para su generación.  Su ministerio es su musica, la que toca en los discotecas de Barcelona y toda España y a nivel internacional.  Pueden disfrutar de su musica aquí:

[soundcloud url=”http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/8994045″ params=”show_comments=true&auto_play=false&color=ff7700″ width=”100%” height=”81″ ]

Para mas tracks pueden visitar su página de soundcloud por hacer clic aquí.