The Israel Deception

Is the return of Israel in the 20th century truly a work of God, or is it a result of a cosmic chess move to deceive the elect by the adversary?

Saturday, October 21, 2017

The Daily Economist update for Oct. 21 2017 -Gold, Bitcoin, and cryptocurrency report


Gold's short and medium term future could rest on how becomes appointed as the new Fed Chief

One of the most non-secret secrets in the financial sphere is how the Federal Reserve, along with the majority of other central banks, having a trading desk that allows them to dabble in stocks, futures, derivatives, and commodities whenever they choose to do so.  And when you add in their purchases of Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS) from the banks immediately after the 2008 financial crisis, then you realize that the central banks have manifested Thomas Jefferson's nightmare of being able to buy and own a lion's share of the assets of a nation.

And with money simply printed out of thin air.
"I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies,"  Jefferson wrote. " If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around(these banks) will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered." - Thomas Jefferson
This is why the upcoming decision by President Donald Trump on who will likely replace Janet Yellen in the seat of Chairman of the Federal Reserve is one of the biggest factors for how bonds, equities, and especially gold and silver, will perform in the coming months because today's markets are not run by fundamentals and technicals, but by interventions from the central bank.

A five-way race for the new Federal Reserve Chair has recently narrowed to two, with reports circulating that Fed governor Jerome Powell and Stanford University economist John Taylor are vying for the top economic position in the country. 
According to reports from the White House, President Donald Trump could announce his nominee early next week. He said that he would release his pick before he goes on a tour in Asia in early November. 
There has been a wide range of speculation on who will lead the central bank for the next four years. The contenders included current chairwoman Janet Yellen; the president’s chief economic adviser, Gary Cohn; and, Kevin Warsh, a former Fed governor and Morgan Stanley banker. 
The question is who would be the best for gold and according to some analysts, it could be Powell, who is seen as a moderate central banker and would likely continue the central bank’s gradual pace of interest rate hikes. 
To some analysts, Taylor is seen as a monetary policy hawk and would be the worst for gold investors as he could support a faster pace of rate hikes. 
Higher interest rates would be bullish for the U.S. dollar and push bond yields higher, which would be negative for gold, which is a non-yielding asset. - Kitco
Until things change, the premise remains the same... Investors can't fight the Fed.

Bitcoin tops $6100 and over a $100 billion market cap

On Oct. 21 Bitcoin hit another new all-time as it soared through the $6000 to currently rest just under $6200 per coin.  And this move also achieved another milestone with this singular cryptocurrency now holding a market cap of over $100 billion.

Bitcoin's total market capitalization (market cap) has surpassed $100 billion, making it worth more than many U.S. companies. 
At this level, Bitcoin is worth more than investment bank Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and household names like eBay Inc.
The digital currency reached this milestone shortly after breaking through $6,000 earlier today.  
After rising past this level, the cryptocurrency has returned more than 500% year-to-date (YTD). - Forbes

Friday, October 20, 2017

New CNBC survey has Bitcoin reaching $10,000 USD... only it appears to have happened already in Zimbabwe

On Oct. 20, CNBC published a new survey in which nearly half of the respondents agreed that the price of Bitcoin will reach $10,000 USD.  However in a interesting quirk of fate, it appears that reaching that price would come much faster than they could have imagined as a frenzy of buying today in the country of Zimbabwe has caused the cryptocurrency to reach the five figure milestone.

According to TheNational.ae, bitcoin adoption in Zimbabwe is seemingly skyrocketing as the country’s economic situation looks bleak. So much so, that one bitcoin is trading at nearly $10,000 on the Golix.io exchange, while the global average is, at press time, of $5,642.00
According to a local trader, bitcoin isn’t just being bought by individuals, but by businesses with bills to pay. The country adopted the U.S. dollar back in 2009 as its fiat currency, as the Zimbabwean dollar had lost nearly all its value. 
At press time, LocalBitcoins Zimbabwe has people buying bitcoin at the global average, and some buying the cryptocurrency for cash for well over $10,000 in the country’s capital. Bitcoin, as every bitcoiner would expect, is helping people in the country survive times of economic uncertainty, as Zimbabwe has been embroiled in a crisis for years. – Crypto Coin News
Meanwhile, here were the results from the CNBC survey.


Thursday, October 19, 2017

As governments begin to create sovereign cryptocurrencies, is the Fedcoin going to be the U.S.'s answer to Bitcoin?

Over the past 10 days, two of the largest financial and industrial economies in the world rolled out plans for a sovereign cryptocurrency that could one day soon bring back gold backed money... albeit in digital form.

Yet in addition to both Russia and China publicly revealing their soon to be implementation of the Cryptoruble and Digital Yuan respectively, perhaps the most interesting thing is that both of these nations have either called for, or implemented heavy restrictions and even outright bans on de-centralized cryptocurrencies, ICO's, and rogue exchanges.

So what does that leave for the West who up until now has only bothered with punitive restrictions on cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin?

The answer may lie in a growing trend among Western central banks to create and implement their own digital currencies that would carry the same weight as say dollars and euros, particularly in regards to inter-bank settlement.  And one of these cryptocurrencies that is becoming more likely each day is that of Fedcoin.

The cryptocurrency hype train obviously has no brakes. But could it eventually replace cash in the US? According to the thinking of economists cited by the Bank for International Settlements, it just might. And to the chagrin of the anti-establishment types that fueled bitcoin's early rise, it will likely be run by the Federal Reserve. 
Alternatives, such as the US dollar and gold bullion, have faded in stature as prices have fallen all year while bitcoin has pushed near $6,000 over the past week. Both China and Russia are exploring the use of blockchain technology to create their own, state-backed cryptocurrencies. A recent Bank of America Merrill Lynch fund manager survey showed "long bitcoin" as one of the most popular trades on Wall Street right now. 
Economist Ed Yardeni of Yardeni Research asks the obvious question: Why would central banks—which derive their power as the centralized gatekeepers of fiat currency creation, check clearing and payment processing—embrace a movement that's primary motivation has been to usurp this power in a decentralized way? 
The BIS­—the central bank of central banks—in its latest quarterly review posited that a crypto backed by the Fed "has the potential to relieve the zero lower bound constraint on monetary policy." Any distinction between regular dollars and this new "Fedcoin" could be removed by establishing a fixed one-to-one valuation. Any competition from the likes of bitcoin could be squashed by regulation; not unlike how the private ownership of gold was outlawed in the 1930s when it threatened the Fed's ability to ease credit conditions. - Pitch Book
Just as gold was a check against irresponsible fiscal and monetary policies, and had to be eliminated from the monetary supply, so too does it appear that the dollar's days are nearing an end.  And since central banks will fight to the death in having to give up their power and authority to print and control a nation's money supply, their next solution is in bringing about a cashless and completely digital system that is backed by a digital token which can be used to totally control the users and mechanisms of the financial system.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Kazakhstan to get into the cryptocurrency game with their own sovereign currency

The latest country to suddenly jump on the sovereign cryptocurrency bandwagon is one that has ties to both the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), and to China's new Silk Road.

On Oct. 18, the Central Asian country of Kazakhstan announced they are in the works to create their own sovereign cryptocurrency, and work towards bringing their financial system onto the Blockchain.

Kazakhstan, a major Central Asian economy, announced its plans to launch its own cryptocurrency, backed by fiat currency. According to an official announcement, the government-supported Astana International Finance Center (AIFC) has signed a deal with the Malta-regulated financial services provider Exante. 
Under the agreement Exante will launch the Stasis platform, which will serve as the foundation for Kazakhstan’s digital asset. AIFC and the company also agreed to cooperate on the development of the country’s regulation on digital assets and markets. 
“Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are entering the mainstream of today’s economic reality. Astana’s leading financial regulators have already commenced their work and are laying the foundation for Kazakhstan’s fitech-ecosystem. We believe that the AIFC can become an international hub for blockchain operations and the development of the digital assets market is our key priority in the near future,” said the Governor of the AIFC, Kairat Kelimbetov. 
In August the Kazakhstan business channel Atameken, claimed Kazakhstan was actually planning the release of two cryptocoins: Altunkoin and Eurasiancoin. According to the publication, both were to be launched in the second half of 2018. The Altunkoin is to be backed by the gold reserve and would cost $50. It would serve as a loyalty program and be used as payment in some restaurants, hotels and airlines. The Eurasiancoin, according to the report, could be used in the Eurasian economic space. – SMN Weekly

Gold backed cryptocurrency Lionsgold hopes to provide alternative to bank accounts by end of the year

Over the past several months we have discussed the growing number of cryptocurrencies being formulated that are backed by a tangible assets such as physical gold.  And while it can often be hard to distinguish which business model in the gold backed cryptocurrency sphere may be better, the reality is that so far each seems to be focusing on a specific sector of finance they seek to replace.

One of these up and coming companies is called Lionsgold, and by the end of the year they hope to complete a new cryptocurrency that is backed by gold and which will use a new blockchain technology called GoldBloc to allow individuals to use their gold backed cryptocurrency the same way they would any regular currency held today in a bank account.

Lionsgold Ltd (LON:LION) roared into action on Wednesday afternoon after the fintech-cum-gold explorer updated investors on the development of its Goldbloc digital currency. 
The AIM-quoted firm has been working on a digital currency backed by real gold for some time now under its majority-owned subsidiary TRAC technology.
The aim of Goldbloc is to give customers the “convenience and utility” of a normal bank account albeit one that is backed by physical gold. 
Each Goldbloc unit will represent 1/1000 of a gram of physical gold – worth around 3p based on current spot prices – and will be divisible by two decimal places.
The ultimate goal is for Goldbloc to become a gold-backed digital currency and banking platform. – Proactive Investors
There is already a well established company called Goldmoney that facilitates many of the attributes and services that Lionsgold is seeking to employ.  But the major difference appears to be in the cryptocurrency model being created by Lionsgold, and how this may synthesize with the slew of other cryptocurrencies currently being traded in the global markets that will go along with their goal of replacing the antiquated model of banking for depositors, savers, and even small businesses.

Gold following normal bull market pullbacks as metal is primarily traded as a commodity through the paper markets

One of the more interesting things often missed when discussing gold and silver is that they are recognized and treated both as a commodity and as money dependent upon the perspective of the investor.  And as such, the ones who buy gold as wealth protection don't necessarily worry about price since a strong dollar protects their purchasing power the same as a strong gold price would, while those who look at gold as an investment tend to focus on prices through the lens of technicals and fundamentals.

So with this in mind, economist Jim Rickards on Oct. 18 pulled a piece of data discovered by billionaire investor Jim Rogers on how commodities trade in a bull market pattern, and came to the realization that even gold follows the same trend lines on their way to new all-time highs, which include a pullback at some point of upwards of 50%.

Gold could be in a long-term trend right now that spells dramatically higher prices in the years ahead. 
To understand why, let’s first look at the long decline in gold prices from 2011 to 2015.
The best explanation I’ve heard came from legendary commodities investor Jim Rogers. He personally believes that gold will end up in the $10,000 per ounce range, which I have also predicted. 
But Rogers makes the point that no commodity ever goes from a secular bottom to top without a 50% retracement along the way. 
Gold bottomed at $255 per ounce in August 1999. From there, it turned decisively higher and rose 650% until it peaked near $1,900 in September 2011. 
So gold rose $1,643 per ounce from August 1999 to September 2011. 
A 50% retracement of that rally would take $821 per ounce off the price, putting gold at $1,077 when the retracement finished. That’s almost exactly where gold ended up on Nov. 27, 2015 ($1,058 per ounce). 
This means the 50% retracement is behind us and gold is set for new all-time highs in the years ahead.Silver Doctors
10 Year Gold Chart

This is also why when investing in any commodity for the long-term, the concept of dollar cost averaging is vital since those who got stuck with buying gold prior to the 50% pullback will be able to re-coup their losses sooner over time by buying at prices well below what they did in 2011.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Russia's new CryptoRuble has likelihood of eventually being gold backed, and tied to China

Ironically there has been only a few countries that have been racing towards engineering a sovereign cryptocurrency as Blockchain technology becomes accepted as the future of finance.  And from one nation's perspective, being the first to do so might give them a huge advantage in the new financial system.

On Oct. 16, Russia's President Vladimir Putin greenlit the creation of a sovereign cryptocurrency that is expected to replace the Ruble, and according to some sources, it may even usher in a return to resource backed money, either in the form of gold or possibly oil.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the issue of a national cryptocurrency, according to Communications Minister Nikolay Nikiforov, after a closed-door meeting.
The minister said once the digital currency or CryptoRuble is issued other cryptocurrency mining will be banned and it will be entirely regulated by the government. 
“I am so confident to declare that we will run CryptoRuble just for one simple reason: if we don’t, our neighbors in the Eurasian Economic Community will do it in a couple of months,” said Nikiforov. 
All the financial operations involving the CryptoRuble will be taxed according to the minister. The tax will also be applied to any appreciation in value. 
“When buying and selling a CryptoRuble, the rate will be 13 percent from the earned difference. If the owner cannot explain the reason for the appearance of his CryptoRubles, when converting them into Russian rubles, the tax for him will be 13 percent of the total,” he said. 
The national digital currency will be moved to international markets, according to the Russia's Deputy Minister of Economic Development Oleg Fomichev, stressing that there is no point in the currency circulating only inside the country. – Russia Today
Russia's new cryptocurrency appears to also be strongly tied with monetary agendas being forged in China, with greater news on their upcoming Yuan denominated oil contract expected to come shortly after completion of the Communist Party conclave.
Most important to the big geopolitical and economic reset picture, as the Russia Analyst told RM's esteemed UK-based regular guest host London Paul via messages this morning, it is very unlikely if not inconceivable Moscow would forge ahead on what will ultimately be a gold backed cryptocurrency without very close consultations with China. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP)'s leadership happens to be convening this week for Beijing's 19th CCP congress. The Russian Analyst does not believe this is a coincidence. Moscow and Beijing hold the world's second largest and biggest stockpiles of gold, and the Chinese have already made the first move of the Eurasian giants working in tandem, via Beijing announcing a crypto-yuan which can be settled via cash renminbi or in physical delivery from the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE). – Rogue Money

Gold bull market still moving along according to data in new In Gold We Trust 2017 report

Despite the fact that stock markets, cryptocurrencies, and housing prices have all performed much better than gold over the past six years, the reality is that the precious metals have always been a contrary asset to the primary markets.  And after a four year pullback during the time the Fed pumped nearly $10 trillion to prop up equities, housing, and derivatives, according to data in the newest In Gold We Trust 2017 report, the gold bull market is still moving along at nearly the same pace as the one which brought new all-time highs back in 1980.

Gold movement:
The bear market since 2011 has been following largely the same structure and depth as the mid-cycle correction from 1974 to 1976.
The dominant currency is always issued by the economically dominant country of an era. Gold has always played a decisive role when the changeover from one global currency to another one took place. One can roughly speak of a revaluation of real assets against financial assets during these changeovers. Reserve currency status does not last forever. At some point, they all have to leave the stage. Will this hold for the almighty US dollar as well? 
Based on the premise that the bull market in gold has resumed, we expect the gold-silver ratio to decline over the medium term from its current elevated level. In such a scenario, particularly promising investment opportunities should emerge in the stocks of silver mining companies. – Silver Doctors

The Daily Economist update for Oct. 17 2017 - Geo-politics - Populism, globalism and Putin's crypto


Monday, October 16, 2017

China's offered stake in Aramco could force Saudi's into ditching petrodollar for yuan

Last Friday we published an article which indicated that Saudi Arabia has pulled its planned Aramco IPO for a private partnership that could occur with either Russia or China.  And now it appears that this is being confirmed with new rumors on Oct. 16 that the Far Eastern power is offering cash to buy a 5% stake in the oil conglomerate.

Amid confusion over whether the massive Saudi Aramco IPO is on hold until 2019, or permanently shelved in favor of a private placementReuters suggests the latter is now more likely as 'sources familiar with the matter' say China is offering to buy up to 5 percent of Aramco directly (offering the Saudis the lack of transparency they may have been nervous of with a public placing). 
The planned listing of a 5 per cent stake in Saudi Aramco is the centrepiece of an economic reform programme led by Saudi Arabia’s powerful crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is keen for a 2018 IPO. He has said the company could be worth $2tn although a Financial Times analysis put the valuation figure at around $1tn. 
An economic recession in the kingdom is piling pressure on the prince, the king’s son and next in line for the throne, amid calls for the government to increase investment and ease austerity. 
And now, as Reuters reports, perhaps the king has options... 
Chinese state-owned oil companies PetroChina and Sinopec have written to Saudi Aramco in recent weeks to express an interest in a direct deal, industry sources told Reuters. The companies are part of a state-run consortium including China’s sovereign wealth fund, the sources say. 
Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said last year the kingdom was considering listing about 5 percent of Aramco in 2018 in a deal that could raise $100 billion, if the company is valued at about $2 trillion as hoped. 
“The Chinese want to secure oil supplies,” one of the industry sources said. “They are willing to take the whole 5 percent, or even more, alone.” 
PetroChina and Sinopec declined to comment. - Zerohedge
Ever since Congress passed legislation allowing for victims of 9/11 to sue the Saudi Kingdom for its role in the terror attack, the OPEC nation has been quickly moving away from U.S. hegemony and has begun signing new energy and trade agreements with both Russia and China.  And should today's rumor become reality in the coming days or weeks, it would mean the Saudi's are fully intent on ditching the uni-polar petrodollar agreement they have used for decades, and it would also solidify the geo-political shift away from the dollar that started four to five years ago with agreements between Moscow and Beijing.

Bitcoin not allowed: Business leaders in Russia appeal to government for integration of domestic cryptocurrencies only

Last week, Russia announced they were well on the way towards creating a new sovereign cryptocurrency... the CryptoRuble, and included in this were comments made by the Russian central bank debasing the attributes of de-centralized cryptos such as bitcoin.
Speaking at a separate conference in Moscow, Sergei Shvetsov, the first deputy governor of Russia’s central bank, said investors needed to be protected from “dubious” currencies. “We cannot give direct and easy access to such dubious instruments for retail (investors),” Shvetsov said, according to Reuters
Shvetsov compared the high risk of bitcoin to a pyramid scheme. 
“We see bitcoin gradually turning into an asset acquired for the purpose of obtaining a high yield in a short period of time, meaning it has signs of a financial pyramid,” Shvetsov said, according to the Russian news agency Tass. - Marketwatch
However, President Putin and his administration recognize the inevitability of the Blockchain and the need to get his financial system onto this platform while at the same time getting ahead of the game as de-centralized cryptocurrencies threaten sovereign authority.  And on Oct. 16 it appears that business leaders in Russia recognize this as well and are calling for the government to ban all non-domestic cryptocurrencies.

Graphic courtesy of Bitcoin News
A Russian business group has asked parliament to legalize the circulation of domestic cryptocurrencies only, pointing to the risks of foreign virtual money. The warning came amid an increased number of proposals from Russian officials to introduce government control over cryptocurrencies. 
"In the current geopolitical situation, the issuance and circulation of foreign cryptocurrencies in Russia risks irreversible negative consequences for both Russia’s economic development and political stability," AVANTI, a patriotic entrepreneur association, said in a letter to the speakers of both chambers of the Russian parliament.In particular, the business group is urging the parliament to consider legal amendments concerning government regulation on the issuance and circulation of cryptocurrencies. 
What Are the Risks? 
The letter pointed out the key risks possibly stemming from cryptocurrencies. 
"In addition to a number of undisputable advantages, any cryptocurrency has its flaws from which serious risks emerge. Among these disadvantages are the lack of control over issuing and circulation, exchange rate unpredictability, insufficient security, anonymity and decentralization," Rakhman Yansukov, chairman of the business association, said. Sputnik News

The Daily Economist update for October 16 2017 - U.S. Finance - Tax cuts catch-22


Sunday, October 15, 2017

London losing its mojo as world's primary gold dealer as trading volumes have dropped 12% in past two months

For over 100 years London gold markets have been the primary arbiters of gold prices through their twice daily London Gold Fix.  But with a combination of new Basil III regulations and the choice of the voters for Britain to leave the European Union, nearly all financial markets within the British Isles are feeling the brunt of lost business.

And according to new reports out in London for OTC and derivative paper gold trading, the long-standing center of the gold universe has seen a drop off of more than 12% in just the past two months.

London is losing its Midas touch. 
New rules from regulators, on top of uncertainties over the U.K.’s future relationship with the European Union, are denting the city’s position as the biggest center for gold trading in the world. The changes threaten to push up costs, a key competitive advantage of London’s over-the-counter market. 
Even before the regulations come in, average net daily volume of gold settled by London Precious Metals Clearing Ltd. fell 12 percent in two months to 18.5 million ounces in August. In New York, the British capital’s biggest rival, trading in gold contracts jumped more than 25 percent in the third quarter from the previous three months, with activity during European hours surging 32 percent. – Bloomberg

Forget Ransomware, hackers targeting your pc to become part of their network of Bitcoin miners

Earlier this year, pc's with older operating systems around the world became inundated with a Ransomware virus that demanded anyone from individuals to hospitals being forced send a certain ransom of Bitcoins so that their systems could be unlocked, and their data recovered.  However with the meteoric rise in price of Bitcoin here in 2017, a new type of threat to computer systems is taking place and most people may not be noticing it.

Hacking devices with malware to become part of a global Bitcoin mining network.

screen-shot-2017-10-13-at-08-02-19.jpg
Graphic courtesy of ZD Net
According to a new report from Adguard, in a matter of weeks, 2.2 percent of the top 100,000 websites on the Alexa list are now mining through user PCs. 
In total, 220 sites that launch mining when a user opens their main page, with an aggregated audience of 500 million people. 
CoinHive and JSEcoin are currently the most popular scripts being employed to hunt down cryptocurrency, and Adguard estimates that these domains have earned roughly $43,000 in a three-week period at little or no cost. 
It has been estimated that The Pirate Bay may be able to make roughly $12,000 per month from mining cryptocurrency, due to the domain's heavy flow of traffic.
Until this issue is resolved, take note -- adblockers will generally block these scripts. It is up to domain operators and cryptocurrency mining script developers to work together to make this a viable alternative, and in the meantime, you can ensure your CPU is safe. - ZD Net
Unfortunately, the consequences of having your pc stealthily taken over to become a cryptocurrency miner include medium to severe slowdowns in your everyday processing power, and a potential increase to your electricity costs since it is now estimated that the amount of energy needed to mine a single Bitcoin today is enough to power a home for an entire month

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Just as the 2008 financial crisis took place overnight, so too will gold prices be repriced without warning

In October of 2008, the global financial system collapsed overnight, and has required a decade's worth of bailouts, quantitative easing, and market interventions to keep the dying man afloat.  And in addition, it has taken continuous manipulation of currencies and commodities to protect the dollar from losing what little confidence it had left at the end of 2009.


Which means that all technical analysis and trends forecasting cannot determine a specific time frame for an event to occur, but instead any predictions primarily fall along the lines of inevitability.  In fact you can see this now by how many fund managers are simply bailing out of the markets because they believe equities have reached levels of unsustainability, but at the same time they and other investors refuse to short these stocks because they know from half a decade's worth of experience that the Fed will intervene every time there is a slight pullback.

Thus nearly everyone, including the Fed behind closed doors, knows the system is insolvent and could crash at any time.  And it is this Damocles Sword that is held only by a thin string over the entire financial system that makes it both difficult and imperative to be prepared for the paradigm to shift in all facets in little more than a single night.

Over the past few months we have written articles showing that central banks are buying gold at record levels, nations and peoples who haven't owned gold in nearly 50 years are suddenly doing so, and the transitioning Petrodollar system is hailing a return of a gold standard through the energy markets.  And all that is required for gold to swiftly and suddenly be repriced higher is a singular event that changes everything overnight, just as everything changed in a single weekend back in 2008.

In a interview you can find in the link below, commodities fund manager and financial analyst Willem Middlekoop lays out the warning that everything is about to change, and it will occur in a single day when no least expects it.  And more importantly, that day is coming very, very soon.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Are the Saudi's dumping their Aramco IPO in order to sell stakes to the Russians and Chinese

On Oct. 13 an interesting piece of financial news was reported that could have significant consequences to the current geo-political order.  After two years of plans to go public with their sovereign oil conglomerate, Saudi Arabia announced that they are pulling back the IPO to instead sell off partial stakes to private interests.

We noted a month ago that the long-awaited Saudi Aramco IPO, scheduled for mid-2018, could be delayed to 2019, but now, according to The FT, Aramco is considering shelving plans for an IPO altogether in favor of a private share sale to the world’s biggest sovereign wealth funds. 
The FT notes that talks about a private sale to foreign governments - including China - and other investors have gathered pace in recent weeks, according to five people familiar with the IPO preparations, amid growing concerns about the feasibility of an international listing. 
The Saudi state oil company has struggled to select a suitable international venue for its shares, as New York and London have vied for what has been billed as the largest ever flotation. 
The company would still aim to list shares on the kingdom’s Tadawul exchange next year if they pursue the private sale, the people said. 
The latest proposal by the company’s financial advisers was described by one of the people as a “face-saving” option for Saudi Aramco, which has worked on plans to list its shares internationally for more than a year. 
Desk chatter included comments that the Saudis were anxious about the level of due diligence and transparency involved in a public offering. 
A Saudi Aramco spokesperson said: 
“A range of options, for the public listing of Saudi Aramco, continue to be held under active review. No decision has been made and the IPO process remains on track.” - Zerohedge
It is interesting to see that this sudden move by the Saudi's comes just a short time after King Salman visited Moscow for the first time in history, and also as the Arab Kingdom prepares to begin adding the Yuan to the basket of currencies they are willing to sell their oil in.

Additionally, by selling a large enough stake of Aramco to either the Russians or the Chinese, Saudi Arabia will have access to the largest energy consortium on the planet (Moscow), and the largest banking center (Beijing) which may ensure that they can play a part in further exploration and production that would occur outside their own borders.

Financier who made a fortune in gold mining is shifting his sights to cryptocurrency mining

One of the original investors in the world's largest gold mining company is now shifting his sights towards cryptocurrency mining as Canadian mogul Frank Giustra is reported to now be investing in an up and coming Blockchain developer known as Hive Blockchain Technologies Inc..

Giustra is very well known in the financial world as his exploits include the development of Goldcorp, and film producer Lions Gate Entertainment.  And he is also very close friends with Bill Clinton and George Soros making him a powerful insider to both Wall Street and the political sphere.

Frank Giustra, the Canadian mining maverick who amassed a fortune building what would become one of the world's largest gold companies, is digging for another kind of gold: cryptocurrencies. 
The company he's backed, Vancouver-based Hive Blockchain Technologies Inc., is among the first publicly traded stocks to provide exposure to cryptomining – the vast data crunching needed to verify the blockchain and the volatile currencies they produce, such as bitcoin and ether. 
Mr. Giustra helped build the company that would become Goldcorp Inc. then founded film studio Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. He counts Bill Clinton and George Soros among his close pals. Those connections may position him to grasp a nascent corner of finance and navigate bitcoin's uncertain regulatory waters. Mr. Giustra didn't respond to a request for an interview. 
Blockchain is the technology used to verify and record transactions on a public, online ledger. "Miners" use computers to solve complex math problems to verify transactions, earning a reward of a newly issued coin, such as bitcoin or ether. Hive paid Hong Kong-based Genesis Mining Ltd., builder of the world's largest ether mining facility, $9-million and gave it a 30-per-cent stake to acquire a new data centre in Reykjanes, Iceland. 
There, Hive plans to mine different cryptocurrencies, depending on which ones offer the best margins and build an inventory of coins on the expectation they'll appreciate. – Globe and Mail
Outside of simply buying a majority share of available Bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies, digital mining on the Blockchain is the next best thing to being able to corner a large portion of a given crypto market, and to be able to eventually financialize cryptocurrencies on Wall Street and other global markets.

One major reason behind yesterday's 20% Bitcoin price spike is that customers can now buy cryptos from their bank accounts

On Oct. 13, Bitcoin saw a huge 20% jump in price as a number of different scenarios played into investors running headlong into the cryptocurrency.  And while many analysts are attributing the move that nearly saw Bitcoin hit $6000 per coin to a rumor that China was preparing to re-open Bitcoin exchanges, another potential reason could be that Coinbase is now allowing people to buy Bitcoin straight from their bank accounts.

Bitcoin surged to a new high Friday, and a key announcement from digital currency exchange Coinbase could be a driving factor. 
Coinbase, a major U.S.-based digital currency exchange, said Thursdayit is enabling investors to make instant purchases of up to $25,000 worth of bitcoin, ethereum and litecoin from U.S. bank accounts. Previously, customers using their bank accounts to buy the digital currencies had to wait several days to receive them. 
"One of the biggest pieces of feedback we get on Coinbase is 'why does it take so long!'" Coinbase co-founder and CEO Brian Armstrong said in a tweet Thursday. "Rolling out instant buys." 
Before the rollout, bitcoin's price could fluctuate considerably during that waiting time, making it a drawback for the regular investor. - CNBC
This shift in payment options will not only speed up the process for investors and customers alike, but it will also provide individuals an easier path to acquiring cryptocurrencies without having to deal with wire transfers or credit cards. 

Bitcoin market cap now bigger than major banks such as Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley

With yesterday's 20% jump in price for Bitcoin, the cryptocurrency has overtaken several more Blue Chip companies like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley in market cap value.

On Oct. 12, a rumor emerged that China was preparing to re-open Bitcoin exchanges after it completes its 19th annual Communist Party conclave, and the news skyrocketed Bitcoin from under $5000 to nearly $6000 in a single day.

The value of the world’s largest cryptocurrency bitcoin has broken the $5,800 mark, hitting another all-time high before retreating to the $5,600-$5,700 level, still close to the maximum. 
Its market capitalization is approaching $97 billion. If bitcoin were a company, its market cap puts it in the same league as some of the world's biggest corporations.
The cryptocurrency would be in 77th in PwC's list of the top 100 corporations, bigger than Bayer, Goldman Sachs, UPS, Nike, and Mitsubishi. 
Bitcoin is up over 480 percent year-to-date. 
The reason behind the rally is talk China may reverse the ban it imposed on cryptocurrency exchanges last month. The Chinese central bank also declared initial coin offerings (ICOs) illegal and banned fundraising through ICOs. 
After the Chinese ban, the Japanese yen consolidated the global trade volume, with 57 percent of bitcoin’s fiat exchange volume. The US dollar and South Korean won follow.
Some investors say bitcoin bulls could test a new ceiling of $6,500. They are also buoyant that banking giant Goldman Sachs is likely to start trading bitcoin. – Russia Today

Gold price back over $1300 less than a week after Chinese markets back online

On Oct. 13, the gold price regained $1300 per ounce for the first time since the end of September, and less than a week following China's Golden Week where the majority of their markets were offline for the holiday.



Additionally, U.S. data and inflation fears began driving prices up on Thursday, leading to Friday's move over $1300 and setting the foundation for even higher prices going into the end of the year.
Gold futures pushed above the key $1,300 level Friday after a reading on U.S. inflation came in cooler than expected, raising uncertainty about the pace of U.S. interest-rate hikes by the Federal Reserve. 
December gold GCZ7, +0.44% tacked on $5, or 0.4%, to $1,301.50 an ounce, set to tally a gain of 2.1% for the week. The exchange-traded SPDR Gold SharesGLD, +0.50%  added 0.5% in Friday trading, poised for a weekly gain of around 2%. 
“There are many triggers for gold, including the mix of economic data showing uncertainty of future growth to inflation, which would push the [Federal Reserve] to raise rates in a slower sequence,” said Peter Spina, president and chief executive officer of GoldSeek.com. “The market is questioning the future rate increase amounts and thus the stage is being set up for a much larger gold rally in the months to year ahead.” - Marketwatch

Thursday, October 12, 2017

While Sweden continues on track to be the world's first cashless society, Canada instead currently reigns as number one

One of the primary reasons why the Nordic European countries are moving quickly towards becoming entirely cashless is primarily due to their citizens buying into the country's goal of eliminating physical currency.  And as such, the country of Sweden is well on its way towards becoming the world's first cashless society by 2023.

However even with this dedicated mission, Sweden currently doesn't reign on top of country's that use digital payments for settlement more than physical cash.  And interestingly that designation goes to Canada who in a new study ranks number one in digital payment infrastructure and assimilation.

When the world finally goes cash-free, there's a good chance Canadians will get there first. The country is moving towards a cashless society faster than anyone else, studies suggest. 
One study, from trading site Forex Bonuses, named Canada the most advanced country in the world when it comes to cashless payments, narrowly edging out Sweden and the U.K. (See infographic below.) 
The study looked at six elements of a cashless world: credit cards per person; debit cards per person; the share of cards that are contactless; the rate of growth of cashless payments; the share of payments made using non-cash methods; and the public's awareness of their non-cash options. - HuffPost

Moves out of local currencies and fear of market crash drives Bitcoin to new all-time high of over $5200

Even with the lockdown of cryptocurrency ICO's and exchanges in China, and suggestions from the Russian central bank that Bitcoin should be outlawed, moves by investors into the crypto sphere has seen little decline.  And on Oct. 12, an impressive surge in buying has now pushed the Bitcoin price above $5200 and into a new all-time high.

Having bounced back from China's exchange closures and Dimon's damning, Bitcoin just broke above its pre-China ICO ban highs and traded above $5000 for the first time in history (even as Russia decided to block local access). There was no looking back as the cryptocurrency is now trading $5240 - a new record high. 
As Coindesk notes, prices had dropped to a low of $2,980 in mid September after China banned token sales and local cryptocurrency exchanges. However, in the subsequent days, BTC quickly regained poised, reportedly due to a pick-up in trading volumes in Japan, South Korea and other markets. The rotation of money out of the ether and ethereum-based coins and into bitcoin also helped the cryptocurrency scale new heights. 
Increased institutional interest seems to have played a role in boosting bitcoin prices. For example, a 'bitcoin desk' at Goldman Sachs would certainly be a game changer. News had hit the wires earlier this month that Goldman Sachs is considering a brand new operation which would be dedicated to bitcoin trading. 
Still, while skeptics continue to call bitcoin rally a bubble, the price action analysis indicates no serious trouble ahead for the cryptocurrency. - Zerohedge
Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are offering an easy and mostly anonymous way for investors to move out of their local currencies and into a form of arbitrage that allows for the bypassing of sovereign capital controls,  And as this becomes more popular, the price will continue to rise in relation to devaluing currencies.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Mainstream media acknowledges China will likely compel Saudi's to sell oil in RMB, causing major hit to dollar and Petrodollar

In an interview on CNBC on Oct. 11, economist Carl Weinberg told the business network that China is going to compel Saudi Arabia to sell them their oil in the Yuan currency, which will have a serious consequence to the dollar and the Petrodollar system.

Beijing is likely to “compel” Saudi Arabia to sell crude oil in yuan, and others will follow, according to the chief economist and managing director at High Frequency Economics Carl Weinberg. This will hit the US dollar, he says. 
In an interview with CNBC Weinberg said China has become a key player in the oil market since overtaking the US to become the world's largest importer. 
Saudi Arabia has "to pay attention to this because even as much as one or two years from now, Chinese demand will dwarf US demand,"Weinberg told the media.
"I believe that yuan pricing of oil is coming and as soon as the Saudis move to accept it — as the Chinese will compel them to do — then the rest of the oil market will move along with them," he added. 
A 1974 agreement between US President Richard Nixon and Saudi King Faisal meant Riyadh has been accepting dollars for all its oil exports. 
However, recently, countries like China and Russia have been looking to exclude the greenback from bilateral oil trade. Russia and Saudi Arabia are the most significant exporters of oil to China, alternating in top spot. 
China has already said it wants to start a crude oil futures contract priced in yuan and convertible into gold. – Russia Today

Russia and China not the only central banks buying gold as emerging markets also preparing for financial event

Over the past decade both Russia and China have been the primary buyers of gold at the central bank level, but under the radar several more emerging markets have been doing the same thing.  And this trend will only continue according to new data out from the World Gold Council.

Central banks around the world are adding to their gold stashes, particularly in emerging markets, as they try to shore up their currencies amid rising geopolitical tensions and, in some cases, to stave off U.S. economic pressure. 
The total amount of central bank holdings of gold has risen by about 7% over the five years to 2016, according to the World Gold Council, a global trade group. Last year, central banks were net buyers of gold, for the seventh year in a row, according to Thomson Reuters GFMS. As of the end of July, they held some 33,400 tons of gold reserves in all. 
Monetary authorities have been increasing their reserves of the precious metal mainly to defend their currencies. Analysts predict the trend will continue for a while. – Asia Nikkei

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

CME puts on a brave face as its claims to 'welcome' competition from China's expected oil contract

As China prepares for the introduction of a new Yuan denominated oil contract to compete with London's Brent and the CME's West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures contracts, the President of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange is putting on a brave face and believes China's entry into the oil game won't be a threat to American markets.

In fact in an interview conducted with the Nikkei Asia publication, CME Chief Bryan Durkin thinks that as China opens up to compete with Western markets, his exchange will outdo them at their own game.

CME Group President Bryan Durkin hopes to tap new customers in Asia by highlighting the group's multi-asset class offerings. 
In an interview with The Nikkei on Sept. 29, Durkin said of Asia: "This market is right for growth and we have emphasized our focus and efforts in building multi-asset class offerings, deep liquid markets, [and an] industry-leading platform." 
Durkin sees opportunity in cross-sales of its various asset classes, utilizing the 300 people already on its regional payroll. "You may have users that have traditionally only focused on interest rates, and they haven't availed themselves maybe to foreign currency or to the metals. We use our capabilities both in education and performance of the overall contracts to draw clients into multi-asset classes," he said.
Durkin believes China's planned launch of crude oil futures trading in Shanghai will not undermine the global competitiveness of the group's mainstay crude oil futures, West Texas Intermediate, traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange. 
"We welcome competition. We have proven and shown that competition is healthy for the marketplace in terms of keeping us on our toes, in making sure that the products we offer and represent remain the benchmark," Durkin said. – Nikkei Asia

Russian central bank seeks to outlaw cryptocurrency exchanges and calls Bitcoin a pyramid scheme

Bitcoin owners saw a plethora of volatility over the past couple of days as the cryptocurrency experienced both a flash crash, and a recovery to near its all-time highs.  And the catalyst for one of these moves was news from Russia's central bank calling Bitcoin a pyramid scheme, and seeking guidance to have all online exchanges banned or outlawed.

The Central Bank of Russia has suggested banning access to bitcoin and other cryptocurrency exchange websites in the country. The officials say digital money is a financial pyramid which is prohibited in Russia. 
The BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) have agreed a cryptocurrency is a tool without a legal definition, which has an ambiguous economic nature and does not allow regulators to protect investors, according to First Deputy Governor of the Bank of Russia Sergey Shvetsov. 
“We have seen how bitcoin has transformed from a payment unit into an asset, which is bought in order to obtain a high yield in a short period of time. This is a definition of a pyramid,” he said. 
Even those who have significant investments in bitcoin admit that there is not much money in the system, it has low liquidity, and it is almost impossible to get out of the system. 
Shvetsov said that in Russia there is a procedure for blocking access to sites which encourage investment in financial pyramids. He admitted there are a lot of them, and the process is not easy. 
"There is a permanent job of blocking malicious sites that involve Russian citizens in financial pyramid schemes. Everything that contradicts or violates Russian law, or creates unfair competition, will be limited," he stressed. 
Russian authorities said earlier this year they would like to regulate the use of cryptocurrencies by Russians by limiting access by the general public. – Russia Today
Interestingly, Bitcoin has not made a great deal of headway into Russia as the majority of trades that take place on the exchanges occur in three primary markets (South Korea, China, Japan).  And since the Russian financial system has both stabilized the Ruble, as well as paid off nearly all of their debts, a replacement for their sovereign currency isn't as important as it is in places like Japan, the EU, and Venezuela.

Rejection of Petrodollar continues as Iran and Turkey agree to bypass dollar and use own local currencies

China and Russia's model of bi-lateral currency settlement is gaining more steam as two more nations have come to an agreement to bypass the dollar for primary settlement and begin using their own local currencies in its stead.

On Oct. 10, the central banks of Iran and Turkey signed an agreement to use their own sovereign currencies in trade settlement and are looking to cut their dependence on the global reserve currency.

An agreement on using local currencies in trade has been inked between the central banks of Iran and Turkey. The aim is to improve economic links and make bilateral trade easier. 
Under the deal, the Iranian rial and Turkish lira will be easily converted to help reduce the costs of currency conversion and transfer for traders. 
Banks in the two countries will also be able to use international payment tools to convert currencies into rials and liras. 
The preliminary agreement was signed during last week’s visit of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Tehran. 
“We have made very important decisions to strengthen and expand economic relations, including the use of our national currencies in trade,” said Iranian President Hasan Rohani after meeting his Turkish counterpart. 
The leaders of the two countries have agreed to boost bilateral trade which currently stands at around $10 billion. – Russia Today
Both Iran and Turkey have created a strong partnership when it comes to negotiating around the Petrodollar as they were intrinsically linked to the Oil for Gold trade during the time the U.S. imposed decade long sanctions on the Middle Eastern economy.  And with Turkey moving more and more into Russia's camp following the failed coup against Erdogan a few years ago, the trend is continuing more and more towards economies bypassing the dollar for their own local currencies.

The Daily Economist update for October 10 2017 - Listener Appreciation Q&A


Monday, October 9, 2017

Anarcho-capitalists can rejoice as they can now move to a tropical island that will provide them citizenship for their Bitcoins

Not all, but many anarcho-capitalists have left North America for different shores as they give up on nations bound by strong central banks and sovereign currencies.  And a few examples of ex-patriation can be found from alternative media pundits like Jeff Berwick, Doug Casey, and Angel Clark.

In addition to ex-patriation, a large number of anarcho-capitalists are huge advocates of Bitcoin and the entire cryptocurrency sphere.  And in an interesting piece of news out on the wires today, these individuals have much to cheer about as a Pacific island country is offering to grant anyone citizenship in exchange for a few Bitcoins.


The Pacific island nation of Vanuatu has become the world’s first county to accept the virtual currency bitcoin for its citizenship program. 
The Vanuatu Information Centre (VIC) announced that its Development Support Program (DSP) will allow foreigners to qualify for Vanuatuan citizenship through a one-time payment of $200,000 – or its cryptocurrency equivalent. 
At current market prices, this puts the price of citizenship for the so-called Paradise Islands at slightly more than 43 bitcoins. - Newsweek

Well respected gold trader warns even Swiss banks no longer trustworthy to store your gold with

On October 8, well respected gold trader and Managing Partner of Matterhorn Asset Management, Egon von Greyerz, spoke in an interview of some very disturbing occurrences taking place in Swiss banks when it comes to individuals and organizations keeping gold deposits held in their vaults.  And Greyerz went on to give a dire warning that banks are no longer a safe repository for your assets as they will securitize them, and in some cases not return your gold to you upon request.

Egon von Greyerz:  “Don’t hold gold in a Swiss Bank or in any bank in any country. We regularly see examples both in mid-tier and large Swiss banks that should make bank clients very concerned. Here are some examples: 
  • A client stores physical gold in a bank but when he wants us to organize a transfer to private vaults, the gold doesn’t exist and the bank must acquire it
  • 400 oz gold bars that were bought by the bank for the client in 2005, were cast in 2011, so the gold never existed.
  • The client is told he owns physical gold and silver but actually only has paper metals.
  • Swiss banks are also doing all they can to stop clients taking their gold out. One major bank refuses to transfer gold out if the client isn’t present. Another major bank recently told the client that they don’t transfer client gold out of the bank to anyone, even if the client demands it
Swiss banks tell their clients that physical gold and silver held in the bank vaults on behalf of clients is not on the bank’s balance sheet and based on Swiss law it belongs to the client.Yes, that is correct, but how many times have we not seen that banks under pressure use client assets as security for their trading, especially when they are under pressure.King World News
As with any physical asset, possession is nine-tenths of the law.  So if you don't hold it, you don't fully own it in today's financial system. 

Gold claws back nearly $10 as China returns to gold market following week long holiday

There are a few holidays in China that offer ripe opportunities for the manipulators of the gold markets to have free reign to drive down prices.  And the two most important ones are the Chinese New Year, and their most recent Golden Week observance.

Last week gold prices fell over $25 from $1290 to $1265 because of limited trading in Asia, comments by central bankers, as well as false interpretations of Friday's job report.  But ever since the beatdown in early trading on Oct. 6, the price has quickly risen from its Friday low to claw back more than $10 to its current level of $1280 here on Monday.

Gold (XAU/USD) prices clocked a 8-day high of $1283.50 in Asia on the back of weak China services PMI and renewed North Korea fears
The safe haven yellow metal took out the 4-hour 50-MA hurdle earlier today. The bid tone strengthened in response to comments from North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un that his nuclear weapons were a "powerful deterrent" that guaranteed its sovereignty. 
Reports had hit the wires on Friday that  Pyongyang is preparing to test a long-range missile, which it believes can reach the west coast of the United States. 
The uptick seen today in gold prices could be a delayed reaction to Friday's NKorea news as the yellow metal remained calm ahead of the weekend, while the Yen had rallied. The tables have turned today as the Japanese Yen has surrendered gains, while gold is on the rise. 
Also helping the yellow metal is the signs of slowdown in the economic activity in the world's second largest economy. China September Caixin PMI came-in at a 21-month low of 50.6. – FX Street

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Macron's ruling party of France to legislate new tax on gold and silver

On Oct. 8, the ruling party of French leader Emmanuel Macron decided to offer new legislation which would act as a 'tax on the rich' in the wake of Macron's earlier attempts to abolish France's 'wealth tax'.

And while the legislation primarily focuses on luxury items such as yachts and high priced sports cars, it also hits squarely with the common man since the new tax proposal would institute higher fees on the purchase of gold, silver, and other precious metals.

Lawmakers from Emmanuel Macron’s party will propose an amendment to France’s 2018 budget to tax luxury yachts, supercars and precious metals, a senior party official said, after opponents attacked the president’s move to scrap France’s wealth tax. 
Macron last week made good on a campaign pledge to abolish the wealth tax, a symbol of social justice for the left but blamed by others for driving thousands of millionaires abroad. 
Left-wing opponents said the move was proof Macron was a “president of the rich”, a label the former Rothschild banker has been struggling to shake off since taking office in May. 
A planned nationwide strike by public workers on Tuesday will put more pressure on Macron. 
The wealth tax, introduced by the Socialists in the 1980s, was levied on individuals with assets above 1.3 million euros ($1.5 million). - Reuters

Saturday, October 7, 2017

While the U.S. uses the dollar as an economics weapon, Russia may be stockpiling gold as a weapon against the U.S.

One of the primary reasons why the U.S. created the Commodities Futures Market (Comex) was to ensure they controlled the price of gold through paper contracts to protect the dollar once it was removed from the gold standard and backed by oil under the Petrodollar agreement.  And except for a few times over the past 45 years (1980, 2011), they have succeeded in keeping the value of gold disconnected from the machinations played with the dollar and within the bond markets.

In addition, America's use of the dollar has gone far beyond that of strictly being a method of trade payment as one of the primary purposes for the military is to ensure the world remains on dollar hegemony and in a singular reserve currency system.

But as the world, and particularly the Eastern World, finds itself ready to disconnect from the uni-polar dollar system, one of the most important things these nations must do is find a way to protect themselves from the U.S. implementing economic warfare upon them using the dollar as the catalyst.  And this is where gold comes in.  And according to economic strategist Jim Rickards, Russia and China's decade long stockpiling of gold may itself be used as a weapon against both the dollar and the United States on the economic landscape.

Russia’s desire to break away from the hegemony of the U.S. dollar and the dollar payment system is well-known. Over 60% of global reserves and 80% of global payments are in dollars. The U.S. is the only country with veto power at the International Monetary Fund, the global lender of last resort. 
Perhaps Russia’s most aggressive weapon in its war on dollars is gold. The first line of defense is to acquire physical gold, which cannot be frozen out of the international payments system or hacked. 
With gold, you can always pay another country just by putting the gold on an airplane and shipping it to the counterparty. This is the 21st-century equivalent of how J.P. Morgan settled payments in gold by ship or railroad in the early 20th century.
Russia has now tripled its gold reserves from around 600 tonnes to 1,800 tonnes over the past 10 years and shows no signs of slowing down. Even when oil prices and Russian reserves were collapsing in 2015, Russia continued to acquire gold. 
But Russia is pursuing other dollar alternatives besides gold. 
For one, it’s been building nondollar payments systems with regional trading partners and China. 
The U.S. uses its influence at SWIFT, the central nervous system of global money transfer message traffic, to cut off nations it considers to be threats.
From a financial perspective, this is like cutting off oxygen to a patient in the intensive care unit. Russia understands its vulnerability to U.S. domination and wants to reduce that vulnerability. 
Now Russia has created an alternative to SWIFT. 
The head of Russia’s central bank, Elvira Nabiullina, has reported to Vladimir Putin that “There was the threat of being shut out of SWIFT. We updated our transaction system, and if anything happens, all SWIFT-format operations will continue to work. We created an analogous system.” 
Russia is also part of a reported Chinese plan to install a new international monetary order that excludes U.S. dollars. Under that plan, China could buy Russian oil with yuan and Russia could then exchange that yuan for gold on the Shanghai exchange.
Now it appears Russia has another weapon in its anti-dollar arsenal. – Daily Reckoning
If gold is the one thing the U.S. desperately needs to suppress in order for the dollar system to remain solvent, then using that commodity against the reserve currency may in the end be the most powerful weapon nations have against Washington's economic gambits.

European Central Bank (ECB) looking seriously at restricting use of de-centralized cryptocurrencies

As we have mentioned many time before here at The Daily Economist, there has always been a Damocles Sword over Bitcoin and the myriad of de-centralized cryptocurrencies that have sprung up since the 2008 financial crisis.  And that hanging threat has been the inevitable reactions by sovereign entities to the intrinsic threat that comes from privately printed currencies.

Money and currencies are simply tools, but ones that represent both freedom or tyranny dependent upon who controls their issuance.  And with Western governments having for the most part morphed into 'Top-Down' form of controlled fascism, it was only a matter of time before one or more of these institutions decided to react.

And on Oct. 6, news is emerging that a major entity is getting ready to act against the cryptocurrency sphere, including the potential of of placing major restrictions on their use within the Eurozone.

Image courtesy of Coin Telegraph
The European Central Bank (ECB) is currently discussing the possibility of implementing legal restrictions relating to cryptocurrencies, according to Ewald Nowotny, a member of the ECB’s governing council and the governor of the National Bank of Austria.  
Nowotny, who has previously expressed reservations about the adoption of cryptocurrency, recently reiterated his stance that bitcoin “is not a currency,” citing its volatility and lack of oversight as well as the fact that its current valuation is largely the result of speculation.  
In China, he said, the virtual currency has been used both as an instrument of capital flight and as a means to circumvent legal regulations. These concerns, exacerbated by price fluctuations that would be considered drastic for fiat currencies, have caught the attention of the ECB and prompted discussions around the introduction of laws to restrict the use of cryptocurrencies.  
Nowotny’s statement comes about a week after ECB President Mario Draghi told the European Parliament that the bank lacks the authority to regulate or prohibit bitcoin and other digital currencies. 
Also in September 2017, the ECB issued a report advising that distributed ledger technology (DLT) should be interoperable with non-DLT systems in order to be viable for real-world use cases. This position suggests an openness to at least partially embracing blockchain technology, the cryptographic protocol on which bitcoin and other virtual currencies are built. – ETH News
When IMF Chief Christine Lagarde was talking about the inevitability of cryptocurrencies on the Blockchain, she was not focused on private de-centralized ones, but ones that would one day come from sovereign governments or central banks.  And make no mistake, the establishments are nearly 100% on board the Blockchain bandwagon, but their allowance of privately run currencies outside their control is something that remains murky and unclear in the future.