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“This Is Our Last Resort”: 48,000 UAW Workers Set For First Nationwide Strike At GM In 12 Years

Setting the stage for what could be one of the biggest industrial disputes in the US in recent yeas, the UAW said on Sunday that its roughly 48,000 hourly workers at General Motors’ plants in the US will go on strike at midnight on Sunday after their contract talks reached an impasse, according to Reuters. This is the first time GM employees have launched a national strike in 12 years. “We do not take this lightly,” Terry Dittes, the UAW vice president in charge of the union’s relationship with GM, said at a press conference in downtown Detroit. “This is…

Goldman Goes “Lehman Weekend” On Oil: Expects Chaos When Trading Reopens

Exactly 11 years to the day since traders organized an emergency impromptu CDS unwind session on Sunday afternoon ahead of Lehman’s shocking September 15, 2008 bankruptcy filing, major banks are preparing for similar Sunday chaos, only this time in the crude oil market in the aftermath of Saturday’s shocking drone attack on the most important oil processing plant in Saudi Arabia (and the world) which may result in a production shortfall of millions of bpd that stretches for days if not weeks, and lead to an explosion in oil prices (for those who are reading this early on Sunday afternoon,…

De-Dollarization: Europe Joins the Party

The ongoing “World War of Currencies”, as the German journalist Daniel D. Eckert called it, the battle for the future of the world monetary system is not a shallow action film but more like Game of Thrones – a complex series with hundreds of actors and locations, stretching over decades and demanding full concentration from the viewer. The bottom line is that what has been true for decades still applies. The US dollar continues to enjoy the confidence of markets, governments, and central banks. But faith in the US dollar weakens a little every year. Europe, China, Russia and many…

A quarter of NYC’s post-2013 luxury condos are unsold

The real estate bubble is in trouble: London’s luxury housing market has been in freefall for years, and New York’s retail vacancy has been soaring, even as global super-luxe housing is also tanking. Now, analysis from Streeteasy finds that at least a quarter of the luxury condos built in NYC since 2013 are unsold and vacant, even as the city labors under a brutal, destabilizing chronic shortage of affordable housing. Worst hit are “ultraluxury” homes, especially those around “Billionaire’s Row” around 57th St in midtown. The numbers are probably much worse, as they don’t count the glut of luxury unites…

Majority of Americans want free college and student debt cancellation

A Hill-HarrisX survey found that 58% of Americans “support government-funded public college tuition and the cancellation of student debt for the more than 44 million Americans who currently hold it.” 72% of Democrats, 58% of independents, and 40% of Republicans support the proposition. Both Sanders and Warren have proposed making state-run tertiary education free, and Sanders has proposed universal debt cancellation, while Warren has proposed debt cancellation for people in households earning less than $250k/year. Klobuchar and Buttigieg oppose both propositions. Everything is impossible until it’s inevitable. At the Democratic debate on Thursday night, Sanders restated his support for wiping…

US Car Ownership Costs Surge To Record Highs, Delinquencies Soar, Trouble Ahead

A new report by the American Automobile Association (AAA) indicates new car ownership costs have reached its highest levels since the automobile travel firm began tracking costs in 1950.  A new car will have an annual average cost of about $9,282, or $773.50 per month, based on owners driving about 15,000 miles per year.  AAA suggests rising costs are mostly associated with increased borrowing costs as higher rates and longer term loans are overburdening consumers. The second highest costs are fuel then maintenance.  The Autoblog said, “the finance portion of the annual vehicle cost rose 24% this year compared to 2018.”  While the…

U.S. Debt Could Be 2,000% Of GDP: A $400 Trillion Nightmare

A new report has said that the real United States national debt could be well over what politicians tell us it is.  At a whopping $400 trillion, the U.S. debt would be 2,000% of GDP (gross domestic product) according to new calculations that include the federal government, state, local, financial, and so-called entitlement debt. AB Bernstein, a global asset management firm based on Wall Street, came up with these figures by including in its analysis not only traditional levels of public debt, such as bonds but also financial debt as well as future obligations for entitlement programs, according to a…

How Useful is the “Unemployment Rate”? Five Humans Who Don’t “Count”

The official “unemployment rate” in the US is nearing historic lows, according to a recent announcement. For young readers, especially, this may come as a surprise. You may see your friends and family struggling to find enough well-paying work to make ends meet, and you may have personally experienced the frustration of wanting a job but not finding one. Your experience may not be as out of the ordinary as the official numbers indicate. The “unemployment rate” is the result of assumptions and calculations by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and is cited in a range of claims by economists and…

In ‘Disgusting’ Move, Jeff Bezos Abruptly Cuts Health Benefits for Nearly 2,000 Part-Time Whole Foods Workers

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos on Thursday cut benefits for part-time workers at his grocery chain Whole Foods, drawing criticism from the left for a move that could leave thousands of people without health insurance. “Jeff Bezos is the richest man in the world,” Boston-based activist Jonathan Cohn said on Twitter. “This is disgusting.” Business Insider reporter Hayley Peterson broke the story.  The decision will affect 1,900 of the business’s 95,000 workers—the ones who work part-time, or around 20 hours a week. “We are providing team members with resources to find alternative healthcare coverage options, or to explore full-time, healthcare-eligible positions starting…

Medical Debt is Crushing Many Americans. Is the Health Care System on the Verge of Collapse?

Health care expenses are a massive burden for many Americans, and for some, they can be financially devastating. A new report from Kaiser Health News revealed some shocking examples of just how bad things can get for some people. ‘UVA Has Ruined Us’: Health System Sues Thousands Of Patients, Seizing Paychecks And Claiming Homes covers the cases of individuals who are dealing with serious financial hardship due to the University of Virginia Health System’s aggressive collection practices. The article begins with the story of Heather Waldron, who required emergency surgery in 2017. She believed she had insurance at the time –…

GameStop to close up to 200 stores by year’s end

GameStop is planning to close between 180 and 200 underperforming stores by the end of its fiscal year. The announcement Tuesday came after the company posted dismal fiscal second quarter earnings after the bell that missed analysts’ expectations and slashed its same-store sales forecast for the year. It said it now expects same-store sales to fall in the low teens, compared with previous expectations of a decrease between 5% and 10%. The company’s stock was down 11.1% to $4.52 midafternoon Wednesday. The shares have fallen more than 60% year to date. “Optimizing our store base for an increasingly digital world…

Faced With Soaring Costs of Private Insurance, Poll Shows 58% of Small Business Owners Support Medicare for All

A survey released this week by the Commonwealth Fund found that, faced with soaring costs under the for-profit status quo, 58 percent of U.S. small business owners support replacing America’s dysfunctional healthcare system with Medicare for All. Progressives celebrated the finding as evidence that a key argument in favor of Medicare for All—that the plan would reduce costs for small employers as well as millions of workers—is resonating. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), lead sponsor of Medicare for All legislation in the House, highlighted the poll on Twitter: As the Commonwealth Fund pointed out in an overview of its survey, small…

Trump Urges Federal Reserve to Lower US Interest Rates ‘to Zero or Less’

Donald Trump has repeatedly slammed the Federal Reserve for refusing to listen to his demands to make dramatic cuts to the interest rate. Furthermore, the US president has stated that he would not prevent Jerome Powell from leaving the post of the chairman of the Federal Reserve if the latter wanted to resign. The US president turned to Twitter on Wednesday with another call to the Federal Reserve to cut down the interest rate and substantially lengthen the term.  In late-July, Trump accused Federal Reserve’s chairman Jerome Powell of “letting the market down” amid the US’s economic battles with China, the EU and other…

Real US debt levels could be 2,000% of economy

Total potential debt for the U.S. by one all-encompassing measure is running close to 2,000% of GDP, according to an analysis that suggests danger but also cautions against reading too much into the level. AB Bernstein came up with the calculation — 1,832%, to be exact — by including not only traditional levels of public debt like bonds but also financial debt and all its complexities as well as future obligations for so-called entitlement programs like Social Security, Medicare and public pensions. Putting all that together paints a daunting picture but one that requires nuance to understand. Paramount is realizing…

Why Don’t You Sell Platinum and Palladium? Read This Before You Buy an Ounce of Those Metals

Platinum and palladium are both precious metals, just like gold and silver, because their occurrence in the earth’s crust is rare. In fact, platinum is actually more rare than gold. So why doesn’t GoldSilver sell them? It has to do with their uses, and their status as a safe haven. Here’s what you need to know before investing in these metals… Are Platinum and Palladium “Investment” Metals? Platinum (Pt) and palladium (Pd) are part of the Platinum Group Metals (PGMs). They’re both silvery in color; in fact, platinum’s name is derived from the Spanish term platina, which means “little silver.”…

Used-Car Market Profits from Carmageddon. For Many Americans, New Cars Cost Too Much

August wholesale auction price index hits record after longest series of year-over-year price gains since 2001. Used-vehicle prices at wholesale auctions around the US ticked up 1.1% in August compared to August last year, eking out a new record, according to the Used Vehicle Value Index by Manheim, the largest auto-auction house, running about 8 million vehicles through its auctions a year. The index is adjusted for mix, mileage, and seasonality, but not for hurricanes and the dynamics of the new-vehicle market. In the fall of 2017 and 2018, used-vehicle wholesale prices went through extraordinary spikes, ascribed to the effects…

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell Insists There Won’t Be A Recession When All The Evidence Suggests Otherwise

It’s happening again.  Just like last time around, the head of the Federal Reserve is telling us that there won’t be a recession even though all of the evidence suggests otherwise.  Just before the recession of 2008, Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke told the country that “the Federal Reserve is not currently forecasting a recession”, and shortly thereafter we plunged into the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s.  This time, it is Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell that is attempting to prop things up by making positive statements that are not backed up by reality.  Speaking…

Don’t Give Politicians Credit for a Growing Economy

“One of the amazing phenomena of the present election campaign is the way in which speakers and writers refer to the state of business and to the economic condition of the nation. They praise the administration for the prosperity and for the high standard of living of the average citizen ‘You never had it so good,’ they say, and, ‘Don’t let them take it away.’” The above statement sounds like something Republicans say in supporting Donald Trump for reelection. The White House proclaims the successes of the Trump economy while those who side with the Democrats say that Obama should…

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell Insists There Won’t Be A Recession When All The Evidence Suggests Otherwise

It’s happening again.  Just like last time around, the head of the Federal Reserve is telling us that there won’t be a recession even though all of the evidence suggests otherwise.  Just before the recession of 2008, Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke told the country that “the Federal Reserve is not currently forecasting a recession”, and shortly thereafter we plunged into the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s.  This time, it is Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell that is attempting to prop things up by making positive statements that are not backed up by reality.  Speaking…

The National Debt Is Now More than Ten Times Annual Tax Receipts

Politicians from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Dick Cheney are united in their agreement that deficits don’t matter. Of course, that’s exactly what a politician would say. Politicians score points by spending other people’s money, so naturally, they don’t want to hear anything about how prudence suggests it might be a good idea to not spend that extra 800 billion dollars they don’t have. But there is apparently little concern in Washington, DC as the annual deficit — for a single year, mind you — approaches one trillion dollars for the first time since the hit-the-panic-button days of the Great Recession. Except…

Mauldin: 2020 Will Be The Most Volatile Year In History

The last few weeks marked a turning point in the global economy. It’s more than the trade war. A sense of vulnerability is replacing the previous confidence – and with good reason. We are vulnerable, and we’ll be lucky to get through the 2020s without major damage. Let’s talk about the risks facing us in the next year or so and the economic environment in which we will face those risks. Supply Shocks Ahead In a recent Project Syndicate piece, NYU professor and economist Nouriel Roubini outlined three potential shocks, any one of which could trigger a recession: The US-China trade and currency war…

“Judging By Bond Markets, Economic Armageddon Is Just Around The Corner”

“Judging by bond markets around the world, economic Armageddon – or something awfully close to it – is just around the corner.” – SocGen, September 5, 2019 “It’s difficult to describe markets,” said the CIO, reflecting on his decades of trading. “For what seems like forever, markets behaved in ways that reflected shifting expectations about central bank activity, economic trends, and profit potential, but that’s changing,” he said. “Now markets shift direction on a tweet then reverse on some comment. And nearly all of it is political.” But even politics are different now. “Yet through it all, global interest rates…

Gold Prices Will Keep Rising Because Crash Conditions Are Becoming Obvious

The price movements of precious metals are difficult for some people to understand. In the world of equities, investors are mesmerized by tickers day in and day out, and market movements occur minute by minute. This realm of investment teaches people to shorten their memories, their attention spans and their patience. In the world of gold and silver, however, investors buy and sell according to cycles that last years – oftentimes decades. It is the complete antithesis to stocks. This is why gold catches a lot of ignorant criticism at times. The “barbaric relic” does not behave the way day…

A blow to Washington… China to invest $280 billion in Iranian sectors targeted by sanctions

China is planning to invest $280 billion in Iran’s oil, gas, and petrochemical sectors that are being affected by US sanctions, according to Petroleum Economist magazine. The energy affairs magazine quoted a senior source who was linked to the Iranian Oil Ministry, as stating that this enormous investment represents a key point in a new agreement between the two countries. This was confirmed during Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s visit to China in late August, to present a roadmap for the strategic comprehensive partnership agreement, which concluded in 2016. According to the magazine, Beijing also pledged to invest $120…

Uh Oh: U.S. Layoffs Rise 38 Percent – Highest Level For August Since 2009

We continue to get more numbers that indicate that U.S. economic activity is really starting to slow down.  According to Challenger, Gray & Christmas, the number of layoffs in the United States was 38 percent higher in August than it was in July.  A 38 percent increase in one month is more than just a little bit startling, and many believe that if this momentum continues we could soon be facing an avalanche of job losses similar to what we witnessed in 2008.  And without a doubt, all of the other economic numbers that have been rolling in lately also…

Gold & bitcoin to replace fiat money as consumers lose faith in ‘social contract’

As the debt-based monetary system gradually collapses the ideas of central banking and the social contract, an expert tells RT that other forms of money may take over the market soon. “We’ve landed at the point where we’re pretty much at the end of the road in terms of yields and interest rates. And central bankers now have the urge to reflate the system in a new kind of way. We are at the verge of this new paradigm where this reflation will hit the gear,” Mark Valek, the author of the annual ‘In Gold We Trust’ report, told Max…

28 Signs Of Economic Doom As The Pivotal Month Of September Begins

Since the end of the last recession, the outlook for the U.S. economy has never been as dire as it is right now.  Everywhere you look, economic red flags are popping up, and the mainstream media is suddenly full of stories about “the coming recession”.  After several years of relative economic stability, things appear to be changing dramatically for the U.S. economy and the global economy as a whole.  Over and over again, we are seeing things happen that we have not witnessed since the last recession, and many analysts expect our troubles to accelerate as we head into the…

Study Discovers That If The Debt Machine Was Turned Off, The U.S. Would Immediately Plunge Into A Horrifying Depression

A new study has discovered that we are far more dependent on America’s great debt creation machine than most of us would have ever dared to imagine.  Today, debt is involved in most of our major transactions.  In order to purchase a home, most of us go into debt.  The same thing is true when most of us buy a vehicle.  Total credit card debt is well over a trillion dollars, and total student loan debt is now over a trillion and a half dollars.  Corporate debt has more than doubled since the last financial crisis, state and local governments…

Major Supply Chain Disruptions Coming: Thank Trump

In yet another escalation of the trade was Trump Administration Goes Ahead With New Tariffs on Chinese Products. Tariffs on clothing and other imports from China went into effect on Sunday, escalating the trade war in a move expected to squarely hit consumers. The U.S. tariffs of 15% on tools, apparel items, some footwear and many electronics will be charged on imports valued at $111 billion last year, according to an analysis by The Wall Street Journal. Additional tariffs of 15% on $156 billion of smartphones, laptops, toys, videogames and other products have been postponed until Dec. 15, after the…

Pork Prices Explode To Record Levels…

One could see it coming from a mile away, but still the breakout in Chinese pork prices as a result of the country’s “pig ebola” outbreak and the ongoing trade war with the US, is a sight to behold. As the chart below shows, pork prices in China have soared to record highs in the past two weeks, adding pressure on a government trying to contain food-price inflation during the trade war with the U.S., even as the country’s Producer Price index posted its first negative print in 3 years, putting China in a bind: contain soaring food inflation, or…

Degussa Sees Gold Prices Pushing To $1,690; Silver To $23 By 2020

With gold trading closer to its fair value and embarking on a new bull market, one European precious metals firm is increasing is long-term forecast for the yellow metal. In their latest research report, published last week, Degussa analysts said that they are increasing their price target for the yellow metal, calling for a rally to $1,690 an ounce by the end of 2020. At the same time, they see silver prices rallying to $23 an ounce. The gold market is currently seeing some technical selling as investors continue to take profits following last week’s push to a fresh six-year…

Real estate frenzy hits Northern Virginia..

The first Amazon employees have barely arrived in Northern Virginia, but the housing market close to the company’s new headquarters in Arlington County is behaving as if all 25,000 workers are moving in next week, real estate agents and analysts say. The lightning speed of sales, the shortage of homes on the market and the elevated prices for available stock are all being driven by those who already call the Washington region home, real estate agents say. Nearly all of the buyers who are being locked out are current residents as well, they say. The latest evidence that the impending…

Preparing For A Financial Apocalypse: Insiders Are Selling “$600 Million Of Stock Per Day In August”

In the U.S., corporate insiders have been selling stocks at an average rate of 600 million dollars per day during the month of August.  This kind of wild selling indicates that there is a tremendous amount of fear among corporate insiders right now, and such selling would only make sense if a stock market crash is imminent.  And without a doubt, we have already seen volatility return to Wall Street in a major way as our trade war with China has dramatically escalated.  Many Americans are hoping that things will start to calm down and that our trade conflict with…

“Pet Rock” Indeed: Bank of America Says Buy Gold As Central Banks Lose Control

What a difference a few years makes. Back in the summer of 2015, a WSJ op-ed writer,  who somehow was unaware of the past 6,000 years of human history, infamously and embarrassingly said “Let’s Be Honest About Gold: It’s a Pet Rock.” Fast forward to today, when with every central bank once again rushing to debase its currency in what increasingly appears to be the final race to the debasement bottom, when even BOE head Mark Carney recommends that it is time to retire the dollar as the world’s reserve currency, pet rock gold has emerged as the second best…

Is the U.S. Becoming a Third World Nation?

Back in the day, nations that didn’t qualify as either developed (First World) or developing (Second World) were by default Third World, impoverished, corrupt and what we now refer to as failed states–governments that were incapable of improving the lives of their people and the machinery of governance, generally as a result of corruption and self-serving elites, i.e. kleptocracies. Is the U.S. slipping into Third World status? While many scoff at the very question, others citing the rise of homelessness, entrenched pockets of abject poverty and the decaying state of infrastructure might nod “yes.” These are not uniquely Third World problems, they’re symptoms of a status quo…

When It Comes To The U.S. Economy, Everyone Wants To Pin The Credit Or The Blame On Donald Trump

No matter what happens with the U.S. economy, most of the credit or the blame is going to go to President Trump.  And now that the U.S. economy appears to be headed for big trouble, the mainstream media is salivating over what this could mean for Trump’s chances of winning in 2020.  Within the past few days, the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC and Fox News have all run stories about Trump and the economy, and they are all perpetuating the false premise that presidents should be held accountable for how the economy performs.  As I have…

This Danish bank is offering mortgages with a negative interest rate

A bank in Denmark is offering borrowers mortgages at a negative interest rate, effectively paying its customers to borrow money for a house purchase. Jyske Bank, Denmark’s third-largest bank, said this week that customers would now be able to take out a 10-year fixed-rate mortgage with an interest rate of -0.5%, meaning customers will pay back less than the amount they borrowed. To put the -0.5% rate in simple terms: If you bought a house for $1 million and paid off your mortgage in full in 10 years, you would pay the bank back only $995,000. It should be noted…

Middle Class Death Spiral: Consumers Have Never Been In More Debt, And Bankruptcies Are Surging

This wasn’t supposed to happen.  During the relative economic stability of the past few years, the middle class was supposed to experience a resurgence, but instead it has just continued to be hollowed out.  The cost of living has risen much faster than wages have, and as a result hard working families all over America are being stretched financially like never before.  Even though most of us are working, 59 percent of all Americans are currently living paycheck to paycheck, and almost 50 million Americans are living in poverty.  In a desperate attempt to continue their middle class lifestyles, many…

Lowe’s spent billions on share buybacks, zero on severance for laid-off workers

Lowe’s roughly 300,000 employees are “without question” the home-improvement chain’s “greatest asset,” according to their boss, CEO Marvin Ellison. He offered the shout-out at the retailer’s annual shareholder meeting in May, crediting a 15% boost in the company’s quarterly dividends to his workers’ efforts. Yet when thousands of those workers recently got the boot, they received no notice and no severance. Instead, Lowe’s — a profitable company that spends billions buying back its own stock — offered the equivalent of two weeks “transition” pay to full-time workers, some with the company more than a decade. Laid-off workers were also invited…

Inflation Is Showing Up At The Worst Place Possible For Consumers: Walmart

When it comes to aimlessly bemoaning about how inflation is a giant mystery that nobody will ever figure out, the Federal Reserve are experts. When it comes to actually assessing real world inflation that is rearing its head in places that have a direct impact on consumers, the Fed is conspicuously absent from the conversation. And of all places inflation can rear its head, showing up at Walmart might be the worst possible outcome for consumers that can least afford it. According to Bloomberg, product manufacturers are boosting prices across the board, which means that “something has to give”, both for Walmart and for…

Farm Crisis Spreads As US Corn Exports Plunge To 19-Month Low

American farmers have just lost their fourth-largest customer as China pulls out of buying US agriculture products this week. It’s a devastating blow in an environment of poor weather conditions across the Central and Midwest US and collapsing commodity spot prices, could trigger farm crisis 2.0. “Sales have already been lower this crop year because of the existing tariffs. If we went all the way to no China exports whatsoever, that would, of course, result in an even larger market and price impacts,” Pat Westhoff, director of the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute at the University of Missouri, told…

The Cold, Hard Math Says Netflix Could Crash 70%

It’s official… it’s the beginning of the end for Netflix (NFLX). As you may have heard, the online video company made a troubling announcement… This quarter, for the first time ever, it lost American subscribers. Hundreds of thousands of them. The stock plunged more than 11% on the news. I’ve been “sounding the alarm” on Netflix’s troubled business since last July when its stock was trading above $400. It has fallen to $328 as I write this. If you own Netflix stock or you’re tempted to go “bargain buying” here, please don’t. There’s nothing but pain ahead for Netflix. Its stock is…

$1,400,000,000,000 Gone In Less Than A Week – Stock Market In Turmoil As The Trade War Dramatically Escalates

Our trade war with China has begun to spiral out of control, and as a result global financial markets have been thrown into a state of turmoil.  On Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 767 points, and that represented the sixth-largest single day stock market decline in all of U.S. history.  To put that into perspective, the biggest single day decline during the financial crisis of 2008 was just 777 points.  So what we witnessed on Monday was definitely very serious.  And the Nasdaq just got absolutely monkey-hammered as well.  On a percentage basis, it was down even more…

US Treasury Department Designates China As Currency Manipulator

United States Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin announced Monday that the US has designated China as a “currency manipulator.” Via a release from the Treasury Department, Mnuchin asserted that Beijing and the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) had violated “China’s G20 commitments to refrain from competitive devaluation.”  Citing an August 5 statement from the PBOC, the release quotes Chinese authorities as claiming to have “accumulated rich experience and policy tools, and will continue to innovate and enrich the control toolbox, and take necessary and targeted measures against the positive feedback behavior that may occur in the foreign exchange market.” …

The federal government sold your Social Security Number for FIVE dollars

Welcome to our Friday roll up, where we highlight the most absurd and concerning stories we are following this week. Equifax fined $700 million… for 147 million person data breach Do you remember back in 2017 when Equifax (the giant consumer credit agency) admitted that it had been breached? Hackers broke into Equifax’s databases and stole personal and financial records of 147 million people. And we’re talking EVERYTHING– names, addresses, Social Security Numbers… all the ingredients that an identity thief needs to destroy your life. Equifax was totally at fault; the company had sloppy, irresponsible controls in place to safeguard this…

Global markets are in panic mode — sparking a wave of investment into gold, bonds and currencies

Global growth worries and an intensifying trade war between the world’s two largest economies sparked a stampede into perceived ‘safe-haven’ assets on Monday. Gold prices jumped more than 1% to hit their highest level in over six years on Monday, while the Japanese yen and core government bonds also rallied. It comes at a time of heightened volatility in financial markets, with the pan-European Stoxx 600 falling almost 2%. That’s on top of the 2.5% it lost on Friday — its worst day so far in 2019. The panic is seen spreading across to Wall Street too, with the Dow Jones…

Perkins & Marie Callender’s files for bankruptcy again, to sell assets

Perkins & Marie Callender’s Holding LLC, operator of two family and casual dining chains, filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday and plans to sell most of its assets, after suffering from lower customer traffic and rising food and labor costs. The Chapter 11 filing is the second in eight years for the Memphis-based company, which has nearly 400 stores under the Perkins and Marie Callender’s brands in the United States, Canada and Mexico. Its 2011 reorganization left it under the control of the investment firm Wayzata Investment Partners, still its majority owner. Thirty-two underperforming restaurants are being closed, but the…

6 HUGE Social Security Mistakes

One of the biggest Social Security mistakes I see people make is claim their benefits too early. According to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, 60% of seniors are applying for social security benefits before full retirement age. If you turned 62 last year, your full retirement age will be 66 years and six months. Full retirement age will continue to increase in two-month increments each year until it reaches 67. Even though you’re eligible to start claiming benefits at 62, it’s ill-advised. Monthly payments are reduced by 25-30% if you claim at 62, depending on your birth…

Lowe’s slashes store-level jobs

CEO Marvin Ellison, who’s served as Lowe’s chief for just over a year, has wasted no time in making big changes at the home improvement retailer. Ellison has shaken up his team, shifting the responsibilities of the COO, chief customer officer, corporate administration executive and chief development officer to other senior executives. He has also moved to shutter underperforming stores in an attempt to reduce costs. Lowe’s in November announced it would close 51 stores in North America on top of ceasing its Mexico operations. This came just months after it announced it would shutter all of its Orchard Supply…

American seniors employed at record-high levels

As the record-long U.S. economic expansion continues, more seniors than ever appear to be putting off retirement. According to data from Deutsche Bank Securities chief economist Torsten Slok, the employment to population ratio for those aged 65 and over hit 20 percent in July – a record high. Employment among the demographic has been on an upward trajectory for about 20 years. As previously reported by FOX Business, 30 percent of baby boomers between the ages of 65 and 72 were either working or looking for work in 2018 – higher engagement rates than what was observed among previous generations at the…

Don’t Believe the Hype: Sales Tax Holidays Are Usually a Ripoff

When Florida started experimenting with sales tax holidays in the late 1990s and early 2000s, something interesting happened. According to a paper by four economists at the University of West Florida, some businesses actually increased their prices during the holidays, thus likely capturing a portion of the savings that the policy was supposed to create for consumers. That’s just one of the many potential downsides that these tax-free weekends have: They’re gimmicky ways for states to dodge the tough work of making their regular taxes less harmful, and they don’t deliver many benefits for consumers. It’s always nice to be able to…

TAX, TAX, TAX, TAX, TAX: DC Renews Push For Downtown Congestion Tax. Inspired by New York City, Washington, DC now wants to tax commuters who drive into the city with a congestion charge

The District of Columbia is moving to finally implement the tax on commuters it has sought for decades. The city’s recently adopted 2020 budget provided $500,000 for a study of congestion pricing due on July 1, 2020. City officials, bolstered by efforts to impose a toll on city streets in New York City, are hoping to raise millions with the new charge. As adopted by the city council, the study is to provide “an analysis of the potential to raise revenue” by putting up toll booths on the bridges across the Potomac River that lead to the city, as well…

More Fake Happy News About Jobs

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the US economy created 148,000 new private sector jobs during July.  The jobs number does not translate into employed people as increasingly Americans hold two or more jobs.  For example, the BLS reports that from June to July the number of multiple job holders rose by 233,000 which is 85,000 more than the 148,000 new private sector jobs.  What we are seeing is not more people employed, but more multiple job holders. Since May the number of multiple job holders has increased by 534,000.  https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t09.htm  The claim of a falling rate of unemployment…

It’s Over: The Democrats And The Republicans Are Both Conspiring To Bankrupt America And Destroy Our Future

Both major political parties are working together to destroy America’s financial future, and most Americans don’t seem to care. Once upon a time, the Republicans were considered to be “the party of fiscal responsibility”, but now they are just as bad as the “free spending” Democrats. As you will see below, a “compromise” budget deal was just reached which will dramatically increase federal spending and will suspend the federal debt limit until after the next election. In other words, both sides are conspiring to make our debt problem much, much worse over the next year and a half, and this…

Elizabeth Warren Warns Of ECONOMIC CRASH, Her Policies Will Make It Worse!

Democratic presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren says that some warning signs are flashing that we will have an upcoming economic crash. While the crash is imminent and the signs are obvious, Warren’s own policies will demolish the middle class and impoverish everyone in the United States. Warren has literally just given anyone with a few brain cells a reason to never vote for her and reject her socialist policies. “Warning lights are flashing. Whether it’s this year or next year, the odds of another economic downturn are high — and growing,” Warren said according to CNBC. And what, pray tell, does…

“I don’t know how I can maintain this face of joy and warmth when I have to go home and forage for food in other people’s garbage”

Despite all the bragging that the mainstream media is constantly doing about the U.S. economy, the truth is that most Americans are deeply struggling right now.  59 percent of us are living paycheck to paycheck, and nearly 50 million Americans are living in poverty.  Sadly, most of those that are living in poverty actually come from a home where at least one person is currently employed.  Millions upon millions of Americans are working as hard as they can, but it simply is not enough to pull them above the poverty line, and it is a very serious national crisis.  Even…

U.S. Manufacturing Is Officially In Recession

The manufacturing industry in the United States has officially sunk into a recession. The once-booming industry is struggling to stay alive amid the trade war as production slumped in the second quarter. Data from the Federal Reserve shows that production in June fell flat. In fact, the numbers were below the expectations of a meager 0.1% gain predicted by Wall Street economists. The U.S. factory sector declined in the three months ended in June, the second straight quarterly decline, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday. For the second quarter, production was down 1.2% after a 1.9% decline in the first three months…

Foreign purchases of American homes plunge 36% as Chinese buyers flee the market

Challenging conditions in the U.S. housing market, along with tighter currency controls by the Chinese government, caused a stunning drop in foreign demand for American homes. The dollar volume of homes purchased by foreign buyers from April 2018 through March 2019 dropped 36% from the previous year, according to the National Association of Realtors. The decline was due to a drop in the number and average price of purchases. Foreigners bought 183,100 properties with a total value of about $77.9 billion, down from 266,800 valued at $121 billion in the previous period. They paid a median price of $280,600, which…

New Multi-year Gold Rally Has Emerged

The dollar price of gold has been on a roller-coaster ride for the past six years. But the past six weeks have been a turbocharged version of that. Investors should expect more of the same for reasons explained below. The six-year story is the more important for investors and also the more frustrating. Gold staged an historic bull market rally from 1999 to 2011, going from about $250 per ounce to $1,900 per ounce, a 650% gain. Then, gold nose-dived into a bear market from 2011 to 2015, falling to $1,050 per ounce in December 2015, a 45% crash from…

Fed chairman warns of ‘unthinkable’ harm if debt ceiling isn’t raised

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Thursday that the global economy could suffer “unthinkable” damage if the White House and Congress fail to raise the federal debt limit. Testifying before the Senate Banking Committee, the Fed chairman said it was “essential” for Congress to raise the legal limit on the federal debt before the U.S. government defaults on its loans. “We’ve always paid our bills, and it simply must happen that Congress raises the debt ceiling in time to allow that to happen,” Powell said. The consequences of inaction “would be highly unpredictable,” Powell added, warning that “no one should…

Amazon Is Giving Workers A Chance To Learn To Code Before Robots Take Their Jobs

Amazon is grooming its vast workforce for the automation job apocalypse that the company itself is helping to bring about thanks to its robotics division. As the company introduces more robots and automated systems to sort goods and fill orders at its warehouses, making more of its increasingly better-paid workforce redundant, the company apparently wants to be seen as giving them a chance to learn new skills – like, for example, how to code – before shunting them aside. As WSJ reports, Amazon is planning to spend $700 million – a drop in the bucket compared with the company’s $240…

CBO Analysis Shows $15 Federal Minimum Wage Would Raise Pay for 27 Million Workers and Lift 1.3 Million Out of Poverty

A Congressional Budget Office analysis published Monday showed that raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 would significantly increase pay for over 27 million workers and lift 1.3 million people—including hundreds of thousands of children—out of poverty. The CBO also found that more than doubling the federal minimum wage would boost the income of families earning less than three times the poverty rate by nearly $22 billion. While corporate media headlines emphasized the CBO’s estimate that a $15 minimum wage could wipe out over a million jobs, economists disputed this finding as overly pessimistic and noted…

Milk Sales Plummeted By $1.1 Billion In 2018

Good news! Dairy sales dropped by $1.1 billion in 2018! You may not know why this is good news just yet, but we’ll get there! Dairy Farmers of America during released the new statistics during an annual meeting in 2018. Sales dropped 8% from $14.7 billion in 2017 to $13.6 billion in 2018. This was due to low milk prices and a massive consumer shift toward plant-based alternatives like cashew milk, almond milk and soy milk. In response to the losses, dairy lobbyists have been pushing to ban marketable terminology like ‘milk,’ ‘cheese’ and ‘dairy free’ from being used by…

US Warned About Risk of Default in September

The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC), a Washington-based think tank and advocacy group, in its latest report has warned that the United States may default on government debt in the first half of September. “The Bipartisan Policy Center now forecasts a risk that the debt limit ‘X Date’ — the date when the federal government can no longer pay all of its bills in full and on time — could occur in the first half of September”, the think tank said on Monday. The report’s authors stressed that in July and August, the US Treasury would continue to spend funds on…

Amazon staff will strike during Prime Day over working conditions

While Amazon is busy hyping up this year’s Prime Day extravaganza, its workers will be drawing attention to more serious issues than price cuts. Staff at a warehouse in Shakopee, Minnesota will hold six hours of strikes on July 15th (the start of Prime Day) to demand less stringent quotas and the conversion of more temporary workers into permanent employees. The quotas make the work dangerous and unreliable, according to the workers, and permanent work will help create a “livable future.” Workers in the US have protested before (including a December protest in Minnesota over support for East African workers),…