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?

Friday, April 20, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 20 2018 - Financial Markets and Economic Wrapup

Shanghai Gold Exchange expands reach over gold markets with new partnership with Moscow Exchange

In just a few short years the Shanghai Gold Exchange has become the world's largest physical gold market, with connections to Hong Kong, Dubai, and perhaps even soon with Malaysia.

But before the latter one happens, possibly as soon as later this year, China just announced a new and even bigger partnership on April 19 when the SGE signed an MOU agreement with the Moscow Exchange to facilitate direct trading in their respective gold markets.

On 19 April 2018, Moscow Exchange signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE). The agreement aims to promote cooperation between China and Russia in the sphere of gold exchange trading. 
The signing ceremony with Igor Marich, Managing Director of Money and Derivatives Markets, member of MOEX Executive Board, and Song Yuqin, Vice President of Shanghai Gold Exchange, took place as part of the third annual "Global Gold Market Summit 2018" in Xiamen (China) organized by SGE. 
MOU provides for Russian and Chinese precious metals markets and exchange products information sharing, organization of joint conferences concerning topics of gold market, training and staff exchange as well as seeking opportunities for business cooperation. 
Pursuing the provisions of the agreement on Cooperation in the sphere of gold exchange trading between the Central Bank of the Russian and the People’s Bank of China signed in September 2017 this MOU sets forth the next chapter in enhancing of cross-border gold exchange trading on Chinese and Russian financial markets and development of organized precious metals market. – Mondo Visione

European Union puts down the hammer on cryptocurrency traders by introducing identity requirements on exchanges

On April 19. the European Parliament voted overwhelmingly to introduce new rules for cryptocurrency trading on exchanges that will remove all facets of anonymity for investors.

Passing with the vote count of 574-13, the EU is now ready to begin implementation of tighter regulations over cryptocurrency exchanges which will include due diligence procedures, identity verification, and exchange registration.

Graphic courtesy of Coin Telegraph
Members of the European Parliament supported on Thursday an agreement reached with the European Council in December to bring cryptocurrencies under “closer regulation”. The decision was passed with 574 votes, 13 nays and 60 abstentions, the parliament’s press service announced. The agreement represents the fifth and latest update of the EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive. 
The amendments are intended to address “risks linked to virtual currencies”. To end the anonymity associated with them, cryptocurrency trading platforms and custodian wallet providers will be obliged to introduce customer due diligence controls, including identity verification procedures. In the future, these businesses will apply for registration in order to offer regulated exchange and payment services. - Bitcoin

Turkey becomes the next country to demand their gold back from the Fed as they continue to work towards ditching the dollar

Ever since 2008, a number of countries have called for repatriating their gold from central banks in France, Britain, and the U.S..  And now on April 20 we can Turkey to this list as officials in Ankara reported that they are calling for the remaining gold reserves they hold with the Fed to be returned.

Ankara has decided to bring back all its gold stored in the US Federal Reserve, according to Turkish media. In recent years, Turkey repatriated 220 tons of gold from abroad, and 28.7 tons was brought back from the US last year. 
Turkey’s gold reserves are estimated at 564 tons and are worth about $20 billion, Turkish newspaper Yeni Safak reported. This makes Ankara the 11th largest gold holder, behind the Netherlands and ahead of India. The reports come at a time when Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has taken a tough stance against the US currency. – Russia Today
Turkey has also joined in with Iran and a handful of other countries looking to divest themselves from dollar hegemony, and may soon join with Russia in the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) where direct bi-lateral trade is the standard for this trade group.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Cryptocurrency exchange Kraken gives middle finger to NY Attorney General on their demands for operational and IP data

The newest battle between cryptocurrencies and the hacks who function at the whims of Wall Street appears to be taking shape as the CEO of the cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has denied the state of New York's Attorney General access to their operations and IP data in the wake of the AG's office demanding access to this information.

The head of a major cryptocurrency exchange will not comply with the New York attorney general's request for information. 
"The resource diversion for this production is massive. This is going to completely blow up our roadmap!" Kraken co-founder and CEO Jesse Powell said Wednesday on Twitter. 
"Then I realized we made the wise decision to get the hell out of New York three years ago and that we can dodge this bullet," Powell said. "Ordinarily, we're happy to help government understand our business, however, this is not the way to go about it." 
Schneiderman's office asked 13 cryptocurrency exchanges on Tuesday to complete a questionnaire by May 1 to share details on areas such as ownership, fees, trading suspensions and money laundering. 
Powell said the last time exchanges complied with New York's request for information, they were encumbered with the BitLicense. "Kraken left New York because New York is hostile to crypto and this 'questionnaire' we received today proves that New York is not only hostile to crypto, it is hostile to business," he said. - CNBC

Next generation of cryptocurrencies want to use algorithms to mimic central banks

How quickly the cryptocurrency sphere is evolving.

Nine years ago, a mysterious individual or group using the name Satoshi Nakamoto created the first cryptocurrency on the blockchain which was meant to offer people a chance for decentralized money that was outside the control and purview of governments and central banks.  And over the next near decade over a thousand of these types of digital tokens have sprang up.

Then a new type of cryptocurrency came onto the scene which offered individuals tokens that were backed by physical resources such as gold, diamonds, coffee, and even donuts.  These cryptos would incur their own label known as Stablecoins because they promised less volatility than their unbacked cousins.

And now we can add a third category or evolution to this sector as a new form of crypto is being engineered which will offer a flexibility in supply, and would use an algorithm to mimic the functions of a central bank.

Stablecoins are their own category of cryptocurrency. They're designed to maintain a set peg, and avoid the volatility inherent to cryptocurrencies. Unsurprisingly, the most common peg is US$1. 
There have been three distinct generations of stablecoin so far, with new developments in distributed ledger technology and economic theory spurring new coins. 
The third generation is getting increasingly crowded and complex. This genre of coins is focused strongly on economic theory, to create stablecoin systems without any outside collateral. Basis is one of these coins, along with others like Havven and USDX. These cryptocurrencies are essentially designed to be self-sustaining economic systems, which can expand and contract as needed just like a central bank issued currency. Except in the case of these coins, the expansion and contraction is controlled by an algorithm, rather than by a central authority. - Finder

Gold mining output continues to decline as number one producer China reports 3% drop in first quarter 2018

We have written a few times that the potential for Peak Gold production may have occurred sometime back in 2016, and subsequently over the next two years the overall global output has been in a steady decline.  And here in the first quarter of 2018 this trend appears to be continuing as China, the world's largest gold producer, reported a 3% QoQ drop in gold output during this period.

GOLD MINING output in China fell almost 3% in the first 3 months of 2018 compared with the same period last year, according to new data. 
That extends the 6% annual drop recorded in 2017 according to the latest statistics from government-backed body the China Gold Association. 
The world's No.1 gold-mining nation produced 98.2 tonnes in the first quarter, the CGA said down from over 101 tonnes a year earlier.- Bullion Vault

Yield curve now virtually flat as difference between 10 year and 30 year below 20 bps

While the financial pundits continue to jawbone about the ongoing trade war, how great earnings are, and even that stocks have remained 'undervalued', very little is being said about the dwindling difference between the 10 and 30 year bond yields.  And perhaps it is because what this flattening forecasts is something the talking heads don't want to discuss in their narratives, and especially what they don't want their viewers to know.

As of April 19 the Yield Curve (difference between the 10 and 30 year bond yields) has fallen to less than 20 bps difference.  And in every instance in the economic cycle that the curve flattens completely or subsequently becomes inverted (10 year yields go higher than the 30 year yields), it has automatically meant a recession.

10 year U.S. Treasury:

30 year U.S. Treasury:

Difference:  19.4 bps
Peter Cecchini, chief market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald, calls it “the most important thing to have a clear idea about now.” Billionaire fund manager Bill Gross says we’re rapidly approaching a point at which the trend will induce an economic slowdown. Others claim it’s only natural, with the Federal Reserve raising short-term interest rates in the face of stubbornly low inflation. 
No matter which theory of flattening you subscribe to, the world’s biggest bond market is sending a signal that traders can’t ignore. The longer the trend continues, the more likely its effects could spread to bank earnings and the real economy, while at the same time it would limit the Fed’s ability to respond when these risks emerge. - Bloomberg

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 18 2018 - Financial markets and economics wrapup

Gold's consolidation above $1340 setting up for strong second quarter as weaker dollar and rising inflation bode well for metal

Gold rose sharply higher this morning to move above the $1350 level and validate its recent consolidation in the $1340's.  And now some analysts are forecasting that this consolidation will bode well for the yellow metal's prospects in the second quarter as dollar weakness continues and bond markets point towards rising inflation.

The second quarter expects to see another gold rally pushed by strong physical demand and the weaker US dollar, according to Boris Mikanikrezai, precious and base metals strategist at Metal Bulletin. 
“The resilience of gold prices in spite of the substantial wave of speculative selling since mid-March (~71 tones, corresponding to a 17 percent drop in net long spec positions) is encouraging insofar as it suggests the presence of buying pressure elsewhere in the market, e.g. physical demand,” the analyst wrote in his weekly report for Seeking Alpha. 
According to Mikanikrezai, exchange-traded fund (ETF) buying interest for gold is at its strongest since September 2017. “Once bullish speculative sentiment toward gold resumes, I expect a strong price reaction. I have a long position in IAU (iShares Gold Trust), expecting a fresh 2018 high in Q2,” the strategist said. 
The industry expert sees a weaker dollar and lower US real rates in the coming months on the back of three main drivers, with the US Federal Reserve the primary driver. Mikanikrezai expects “a dovish hiking cycle” in the next few months based on “[the] Federal Open Market Committee’s patience to see inflation moving back first toward its target of two percent.” 
Inflation is seen as the second driver pushing gold higher, with an expansionary path projected to move further, boosted by strong oil and a tight labor market. The third boosting element for the yellow metal is the US deficit rising due to this year’s fiscal stimulus. – Russia Today

Retail apocalypse continues as 2018 has seen almost more store closures in the first quarter than in all of last year

2017 was a horrific year for retailers as an estimated 105 million sq ft. of shopping space went vacant, and thousands of stores shuttered their doors.  But this may have been just the beginning as in just the first four months of 2018, another 77 million sq ft. of space has gone empty and the prospect of a retail apocalypse has been confirmed.

Retail real estate carnage is going to continue this year with no signs of slowing up, as Bloomberg reported this morning that over 77 million square feet of retail real estate has closed this year and that 2018 will easily pass 2017's record of 105 million square feet closed. The latest example was the fall of the once massive Toys 'R' Us name: 
The fall of the Toys “R” Us chain, with more than 700 U.S. stores, shows how much retail real estate has changed in just the last decade. When KKR & Co.Bain Capital, and Vornado Realty Trust took over the company in 2005, the buyers justified the $7.5 billion price, in part, because of the supposedly valuable properties that came with the deal. 
This pace of closings puts 2018 on pace to pass 2017's record of 105 million square feet of retail space closed: 
At last count, U.S. store closures announced this year reached a staggering 77 million square feet, according to data on national and regional chains compiled by CoStar Group Inc. That means retailers are well on their way to surpassing the record 105 million square feet announced for closure in all of 2017. - Zerohedge
It was perhaps inevitable that U.S. retail would eventually feel the consequences of the overproduction it engineered during the first decade of this century when the housing bubble was fueling growth at any cost.  And now that consumers are once again tapped out, and with historically high debt accumulation, the end for store closures appears nowhere in sight, and it will take many more years before the dust settles in the retail sector.

Facebook data miner had planned on turning your personal information into a cryptocurrency

In a shocking new report out this week, it appears that one of Facebook's primary data miners, Cambridge Analytica, was planning on take the personal information they had gleaned from the social media site and turn it into a cryptocurrency operation.

YOU are the cryptocurrency
Cambridge Analytica (CA) has become a huge name in the data analytics space for all the wrong reasons in recent times, most notably for scraping profile information on some 87 million Facebook users for targeting them with content to influence their voting decisions. 
Now, The New York Times reports that the company also had a cryptocurrency in the works. Its plans to launch an ICO and promote a virtual token to enable people to sell their personal data and profit from doing so have apparently been derailed by the recent Facebook scandal in which its data collection activities were exposed. 
The revelation comes from former CA employee Brittany Kaiser, who left the company in February. She also recently claimed that CA used more than one Facebook quiz to gather data on users, and that the number of people that the company profiled is higher than the previously claimed figure of 87 million. 
Kaiser was in charge of the coin offerings business at CA; the firm, which specializes in profiling people so their views can be influenced for political campaigns, is said to have offered its services to numerous companies building virtual currencies.  – The Next Web
The tokenization of everything is quickly evolving, even now into the esoteric.  And perhaps the biggest irony in this report is that CA's cryptocurrency platform would have been the antithesis of security and anonymity for an individual's private information. 

Silver price explodes upward 2.5% and over $17 per ounce as fears of inflation and flattening yield curve draw cash into safe haven

As a convergence of rising inflation, a flattening yield curve, and no end in sight for the global trade/currency wars continue, the precious metals are emerging as the beneficiaries of investors seeking safe haven assets.  And one in particular ripped much higher on April 18 as the silver price finally rose back up above $17 per ounce for the first time in two and a half months, and is already up over 2.5% for the day.

Now, if we can get above $17 and stay above $17 and close out the week above $17.50, this would be very bullish. On Monday I said I think that the sweet spot for the rally to begin in earnest is $18.50, and recall that in past updates, I have said that once we finally get back into the $17s and especially above $17.50, that we could be above $18 in a matter of days. – Silver Doctors

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

While the IRS wants to take money out of your pocket here on Tax Day, businesses have free stuff to put back in

With so many Americans waiting until April 17 (Tax Day) to file and pay their taxes... so much so that the IRS website has even crashed, it is good to know that there is a segment of the economy that wants to put something back into your pocket as Uncle Sam takes things out.

Here is a list of just a few of the businesses that are offering deals or outright free stuff here on Tax Day 2018.

Great American Cookies 
As it does every year, Great American Cookies is offering a free Cookies & Cream Cookie, which combines a vanilla cookie with premium chocolate sandwich cookie pieces and white chocolate chips, to all customers on Tuesday, April 17. No purchase is necessary for the Tax Day 2018 freebie. 
Kona Ice 
The weather might be a bit chilly in some areas, but Kona Ice will offer a free shaved iceto anyone who wants one on April 17. Just tweet your zip code to @konaice and the company will let you know where to find the closest truck to you, along with and where and when they will be serving the shaved ice up. 
Hot Dog on a Stick 
Pick up a free original turkey or veggie dog at Hot Dog on a Stick on Tax Day 2018. No purchase necessary and you don’t even have to prove you filed your taxes. 
If the tax bill was painful this year, Chili’s is offering a $5 Cuervo Blue Margarita to help wash away the pain on Tuesday, April 17. 
If the tax bill was especially painful this year, Applebee’s is in the midst of a month-long promotion where its house margarita is just $1. 
Chuck E. Cheese’s 
Buy one large cheese pizza, get one large cheese pizza free. Offer is good Tuesday through Thursday. 
Cici’s Pizza 
The price of the all-you-can-eat buffett drops to $4.17 today only. You’ll need this coupon to get the deal. 
Firehouse Subs 
Buy one full-priced combination of a sub, chips, and drink and get a second medium sub for free with this coupon on Tax Day 2018. 
Boston Market 
Participating Boston Market restaurants nationwide will offer a $10.40 Tax Day Special on April 17, which includes a half chicken individual meal with two sides, cornbread, and a regular fountain drink. 
After you file your 1040 tax form, head to Quiznos for a 10.40% deduction off any purchase on April 17. You’ll need to be a Toasty Points loyalty app member, but if you join specifically to take advantage of this Tax Day deal, you’ll also get a free 4-inch sub once you download the app. 
Buy a bag of chips and a medium drink and Schlotzsky’s will throw in the sandwich for free. Tax Day just got that much more appetizing because Schlotzsky’s is offering a free small original sandwich with the purchase of chips and a medium drink. This offer is only available on Tuesday, April 17 and is sure to delight the taste buds of many. 
Grimaldi’s Pizzeria 
Another pun on the most famous tax form works in your favor as Grimaldi’s Pizzerias is offering a traditional cheese pizza for only $10.40. 
Blue Point Brewing Co. 
Beyond launching their Tax Day IPA (8.0% ABV) today, Blue Point is offering free pints of the new beer to any CPA who visits the brewery’s tasting room between April 18 through April 20. And if you can prove you paid taxes this year, Blue Point will give you a free four-pack of Tax Day IPA when you buy a four-pack. 
Bruegger’s Bagels 
Grab a Bruegger’s famous Big Bagel Bundle — 13 bagels and 2 tubs of cream cheese — for just $10.40 from the chain through on April 17 (a $3.50 savings). You’ll need to first download this coupon
Sonny’s BBQ 
Every Tax Day, Sonny’s offers its “IRS” – Irresistible Rib Special. You’ll get half-price Sweet & Smokey or House Dry-Rubbed Rib Dinners (with two sidekicks and homemade bread). Sorry, no baby-backs. 
Planet Fitness 
Filing taxes take too much out of you? Planet Fitness is letting both members and non-members use its HydroMassage chairs for free on April 17 to relieve their Tax Day 2018 stress. (You’ll need this coupon to take advantage of the deal.) 
Office Depot/Office Max 
It’s not just for tax day, but if you’ve got documents you need to ensure are destroyed, whether it’s old tax forms or something more recent, the office supply stores are offering up to 5 pounds of free document shredding with this coupon. And the good news is the Office Depot coupon isn’t just good on Tax Day — you can use it through Apr. 28 to take advantage of the offer. 
The WayfarerOn the road for Tax Day 2018? Manhattan’s The Wayfarer is offering half off of all alcoholic beverages today from 7:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. 
W New York 
If it’s more convenient to drown your sorrows at the W New York Downtown, you can select from a special Tax Week cocktail menu. Among the offerings are Uncle Sam Took All My $$ ($4 beers); Wait, It’s Tax Day – I Need an Extension ($10 cocktails); and Uncle Sam Owes Me – Let it Rain (discounted bottle service). 
Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort 
On April 17, the first 17 people who call to book requesting the “Tax Day rate” will get a one-night stay for just $4.17. You’ll have to visit in September (not Labor Day weekend). And you’ll have to call 954.414.5131 after 4:17 p.m. E.T.
At Sonic, the annual tradition is half off cheeseburgers all day on Tax Day. Limit five per customer at participating locations.  
P.F. Chang's has a promo code (TAXDAY) that you can use to get 5 percent off takeout orders made online or by phone on Monday and Tuesday. 
Captain D's has a "1040 Deal" Monday and Tuesday that includes six pieces of fish, a family side and six hush puppies for $10.40.   
White Castle is offering a 15 percent discount on any "in-Castle" purchases on Tuesday.  
Firehouse Subs has a coupon on Facebook, which you can use Tuesday through Thursday to get a free medium sub when you buy a full-priced medium or large sub, chips and a drink.

The Daily Economist update for April 17 2018 - Tax Day for Gold, Bitcoin, and Cryptocurrencies

IMF flip-flop: Bank chief now says Bitcoin could be beneficial to the global financial system

Less than a month ago, IMF Chief Christine Lagarde had publicly called for a crackdown on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, and even suggested that both governments and the banking cartel use the Blockchain against decentralized cryptos.

Now on April 17 it appears that Lagarde has flip-flopped when she wrote in a blog post that Bitcoin could actually be beneficial to the global financial system.

Bitcoin has received an unexpected boost from Christine Lagarde, after the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) detailed the global benefits of cryptocurrency. 
Ms Lagarde wrote in a blogpost that cryptocurrencies like bitcoin could enable fast and inexpensive transactions, while the underlying blockchain technology could make financial markets safer. 
The price of the world’s most valuable cryptocurrency returned above $8,000 following the publication of Ms Lagarde’s comments, though it is unclear if the gains are directly attributable to the news. 
“Just as a few technologies that emerged from the dot-com era have transformed our lives, the crypto assets that survive could have a significant impact on how we save, invest and pay our bills,” Ms Lagarde wrote in the blogpost. – UK Independent
As we at The Daily Economist have always advocated, when The Powers that Be cannot destroy something, their next step is always to try to co-opt it. 

Gold price has remained above $1300 for the longest stretch in five years

In opposition to many analysts who have predicted that gold would fall down to extreme levels of $1000, $600, and even $400 per ounce, and interesting trend has instead emerged which hasn't occurred since June of 2013.  And that is that the gold price has remained above the $1300 level for at least 105 days straight.

Since crossing over $1,300 an ounce on Dec. 29, 2017, gold hasn't looked back. It has been 105 days (and counting) since gold actively traded below $1,300 per ounce, which is the longest such streak since prior to June 2013. Make no mistake about it, gold has crossed over $1,300 an ounce on quite a few occasions since June 2013, but at no time had it stayed above this watermark for longer than 101 days (Jun. 24, 2016 – Oct, 3, 2016) -- until this past week. – Motley Fool
In addition to this trend, it also appears that the floor for gold has moved above $1310 to consolidate around the $1320's.  And this consolidation is making it much more difficult for the manipulators to be able to keep it from breaking through the $1355 resistance level in the near future.

Billionaire commodity trader Jim Rogers sees gold going through the roof as next market correction will be worst in our lifetime

On April 16, Kitco spoke with billionaire commodity trader Jim Rogers on what he sees for the markets in the coming months, and what asset classes one should move towards to protect themselves from the next inevitable correction.  And like what many central banks are doing right now in accumulating gold, Rogers sees this as the primary asset to buy as he expects the price to 'go through the roof' at a time when the next market correction will be the worst in our lifetimes.

Kitco: What kind of correction are you anticipating Jim? 
Jim Rogers: Well, it's been over 10 years since we've had a bear market, which is very, very unusual, so the next bear market is going to be the worst in your lifetime.  In MY lifetime, and I'm older than you. 
Kitco: So in quantifiable terms, are we talking over 50% correction? 
Jim Rogers: Absolutely. 
Also when people lose confidence in governments, and paper money, gold is going to go through the roof.

Showdown may be looming as less than one tenth of one percent appear to be filing taxes on Bitcoin profits

It's officially Tax Day this April 17, and an interesting dichotomy appears to be occurring that could potentially lead to a showdown between the IRS and cryptocurrency traders.

According to survey out from Credit Karma, less than one tenth of one percent of individuals claiming profit from the sale of Bitcoin are reporting the windfalls on their taxes.

With the US tax deadline just one day away, crypto investors who traded actively during the market's run-up and inevitable meltdown should have a lot of activity to report to the IRS. 
But according to a survey conducted by Credit Karma, only a handful of people who have filed their taxes using Credit Karma's tools have reported bitcoin holdings or holdings of some other cryptocurrency - fewer than 100 out of a total of 250,000 filers, or a whopping 0.04% in total. 
In all likelihood, this means that (tens of) thousands of bitcoin traders are refusing to pay the IRS, either betting on the anonymity of the blockchain to conceal their identities, or perhaps in some cases they simply don't have the money to pay, having lost most of their profits during the market's spectacular meltdown, as was the case for one anonymous trader who complained on Reddit that he owed the IRS $50,000 that he didn't have, according to CNBC
"If I had to guess, there's probably a lot of underreporting," said Elizabeth Crouse, a Seattle-based partner at law firm K&L Gates. "Most of the people in the cryptocurrency world tend to have a pretty high risk tolerance." - Zerohedge
There are two schools of thought when it comes to the question of needing to pay taxes on the buying and selling of cryptocurrencies.  The first of course is the reality that even the sector itself calls their tokens a currency, which means capital gains taxes are appropriate for any winning Forex transaction. On the other hand is the argument by anarcho-capitalists that as a decentralized and unregulated asset class, it should be exempted from taxation since owners trade it more along the lines of barter than they do an investment.

Either way, a showdown may be on the horizon between the IRS and crypto holders, and we know who usually wins those battles.

Monday, April 16, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 16 2018 - Financial markets and economic Wrapup

Bitcoin price falls back below $8000 handle but the real test will be to cross and hold $8500

Who would have thought that a decentralized security like Bitcoin would have become manageable through technical analysis?  But alas, this is exactly what is happening now that Wall Street has gotten their hooks into the cryptocurrency.

Because of its low supply nature, Bitcoin and most cryptocurrencies should have exhibited a more random trading flow since it was supposed to be outside the purview of sovereign governments and regulated markets.  But all this changed back around Dec. 17 when the CME initiated its first futures contract on Bitcoin, and since then its trading action has followed very much a controlled flight path.

So with this being said, nearly all prognostications for Bitcoin 'going to the moon' have this far been incorrect, and instead those few traders who have cracked the crypto's technical movements have done quite well in using short-term ranges to buy on the dips and sell on the resistances.

On Friday a new investor came in and bought a decently sized position into Bitcoin which caused the price to spike $1000 in less than an hour.  But following this, the amount of trading volume was rather tepid, and makes the $8500 level a difficult resistance to crack.

A move above resistance at $8,500 would provide confirmation bitcoin's bear market has ended, the technical charts indicate. 
Over the weekend, the cryptocurrency clocked a three-week high of $8,458 on Bitfinex, adding credence to the short-term bull reversal confirmed last Thursday. Further, the 30 percent rally from $6,425 (April 1 low) proved that the much-feared "death cross" indicator was in fact a bear trap. 
Still, the job is only part done, as bitcoin (BTC) has yet to violate the descending trendline established since Dec. 17. - Coindesk
With its low supply, it doesn't take alot of volume to rapidly move the price higher or lower.  However over the past few months, trading volumes have fallen precipitously as the euphoria of the Bitcoin bubble waned, and this has led to thousands of speculators fleeing the market as prices fell by over 70%.  And what remains are primarily day traders who use the loss in volatility to skim profits from the short-term ranges that have appeared in the crypto's analysis.

Diamonds in the crypto rough: Dubai getting into the cryptocurrency market with a diamond backed token

Stablecoins, or cryptocurrencies backed by a physical commodity, are exploding across the crypto sector.  In fact commodity backed cryptos are even enticing sovereign governments to enter into this arena as seen with Venezuela through their Petro oil backed token.

And now on April 16 we can possibly add the Ruling family of Dubai as a joint venture is forming to create a diamond backed cryptocurrency.

A joint venture claimed to be supported by a member of Dubai’s ruling family has launched three cryptocurrency assets backed by diamonds. 
Al Kasir Group, which says it is part of a joint venture under the private office of HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Obaid Al Maktoum, said its new diamond trading model uses the digital ledger technology behind bitcoin, blockchain. 
The firm’s director Amit Lakhanpal said its offering was different to other cryptocurrencies seen as “objects of radical speculation and high volatility” with “potentially huge price corrections”. 
“Most cryptocurrencies are practically a poor store of value and means of barter-like exchange. This gives rise to a need for a more secure alternative,” he said. 
The three assets it is offering – Al Mas, Al Haqeek and Al Falah – are claimed to be backed by Indian Gemological Institute (IGI) certified real diamonds and therefore “better capable to store and translate value”. 
Al Kasir, which has a jewellery trading division and online portal, said as a pre initial crypto asset offering (ICAO) announced it would be selling the three products on its online store with pricing packages from $250 to $250,000. 
Against these products the company said customers would be given IGI certified diamonds of the same value after the completion of the ICAO. – Gulf Business
Diamonds are one of the world's most liquid and stable assets, and act very much as a store of wealth for individuals who don't want to have to deal with government intrusion into their financial dealings.  And when you add in the potential of cryptocurrencies to this mix, you accomplish the duo protections of both price stability and anonymity. 

2017 saw a turning point for silver as supplies continue to decline and where demand rose for first time in five years

One of the biggest reasons why silver has lagged behind gold (80:1 ratio), and has been one of the easiest commodities for the paper markets to manipulate has been the fact that demand for the white metal had been in decline.  However a new report out from the Silver Institute shows that as of 2017, this trend may be ending.

Graphic and chart courtesy of SRSRocco
The Silver Institute published its report on 2017 global demand and supply of silver.
Sustained by a record in the growth of the photovoltaic industry, the industrial demand for the grey metal increased in 2017. That was the first time in five years. 
With an aggregate volume of 599 million ounces, the global industrial demand for silver increased by 4% on a year-over-year basis in 2017. That growth was the result of a 19% increase in the photovoltaic demand, which was supported by a strong global growth of installations of solar panels. 
Supported by a sturdy growth from China and Japan, the employment of silver in solders and fabrication of hard alloys rose 4% to 57.5 million ounces. 
Also, the growth in the demand from the semi-conductor market, helped by a healthier global economy, increased the employment of the precious metal in electrical and electronics applications. 
The electrical and electronics segment delivered a volume of 242.9 million ounces of silver consumed in 2017. – Guru Focus
Additionally, silver production and supply fell for the fifth straight year as depressed prices have caused numerous mining operations to close up shop since 2011.
Silver production declined in 2017 by 4.1% marking the fifth year in a row that the silver market overall posted a deficit. 
The results are part of the World Silver Report released Thursday by the Silver Institute which includes the GFMS team at Thomson Reuters. Silver prices, however, are still trading range-bound, below $20 an ounce, seemingly ignoring the shortage of supply, but one analyst says that prices are driven by more than what’s simply underground. - Kitco
Will these factors lead to higher silver prices in 2018?  The answer to this question is uncertain, however there is a reason why paper shorting on the Comex has reached all-time historic levels, and it is only a matter of time before the physical markets breakaway from the longstanding paper manipulations that are doing their best to hold the price down. 

Sunday, April 15, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 15 2018 - Gold, Bitcoin, and Cryptocurrency Report

Friday, April 13, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 13 2018 - Financial markets and economic wrapup

Trump overrides Attorney General's views on pot as sources say the President is planning to move Cannabis authority to the states

In what could be both a beneficial and massively popular move, President Trump appears to be overriding his Attorney General's earlier views on pot regulation.

According to sources which include a Republican Senator from the state of Colorado, Trump is making promises legislators to protect state authority over the legalization of Cannabis.

The Washington Post reports that President Trump has defused the standoff and promised the top Senate Republican that he will support congressional efforts to protect states that have legalized marijuana
WaPo reports that in a phone call late Wednesday, Trump told Gardner that despite the DOJ memo, the marijuana industry in Colorado won’t be targeted, the senator said in a statement Friday. Satisfied, the first-term senator is now backing down from his nominee blockade. 
“Since the campaign, President Trump has consistently supported states’ rights to decide for themselves how best to approach marijuana,” Gardner said Friday. 
“Late Wednesday, I received a commitment from the President that the Department of Justice’s rescission of the Cole memo will not impact Colorado’s legal marijuana industry.”He added: 
“Furthermore, President Trump has assured me that he will support a federalism-based legislative solution to fix this states’ rights issue once and for all. Because of these commitments, I have informed the Administration that I will be lifting my remaining holds on Department of Justice nominees.” - Zerohedge
Support for state's rights over cannabis will also not interfere with the President's battle with opiods, which have become a serious epidemic in America.  Additionally, the cultivation and increased legalization of cannabis could help cut costs for one of the President's major agenda items (VA and veterans), as well as provide economic benefits such as in the agricultural, medical, and recreational industries.

Bitcoin's price spike yesterday could only have come from an institutional investor... Soros, Rockefeller, Rothschild?

Was it a coincidence that just a couple of days after billionaire investor George Soros announced he had changed his mind on investing in cryptocurrencies that the entire sector saw a sudden spike yesterday at the beginning of U.S. trading?

Now this is just a simple chart of Bitcoin, so let's see what happened to the top 10-20 cryptos at that same time.

Yesterday's movements weren't simply someone with alot of cash buying some Bitcoin, but rather it appears more likely an institutional investor bought cryptos across the board, validated by the same volume and price spikes in a short amount of time that were seen in Bitcoin.

So were these purchases made by a Soros, Rockefeller, or Rothschild proxy?  Honestly, who knows, but it is almost assured that some entity with alot of cash wanted a basket of cryptos while prices were down 70% from their all-time highs, and this could very much bode well for the sector as other markets begin to see selloffs and moves into safe havens.

Major Islamic ruling could change the cryptocurrency markets as Sharia scholar declares Bitcoin halal

An interesting ruling made recently by an Islamic scholar could soon have profound effects on the cryptocurrency markets.  That is because Bitcoin and other cryptos were found to be considered halal under Sharia finance law, and it means that the community of over 1.6 billion Muslims may soon be able to invest in these currencies.

A recent declaration by an Islamic scholar that Bitcoin is compliant with Sharia law could be the cause behind today’s $1000 price surge, opening the market to Muslim investors who were previously unsure if the cryptocurrency qualified as money under the strict definitions outlined by scholars. 
Muslims account for 23% of the world’s population, with 1.6 billion Muslims throughout the world, mostly in Asia Pacific nations like India and Indonesia. Sharia Law, or Islamic Canonical Law, prohibits the practice of lending money at high-interest rates, known as usury. Debate has raged since the popularity of Bitcoin in the Islamic Scholar community as to whether Bitcoin trading was a form of usury due to the volatility and huge profit and loss margins. - CCN
Of course to fully become legal under Sharia Finance Law, the council on Sharia Finance will need to conduct a study and make a determination on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies just as they did a little more than a year ago regarding gold and gold ownership.  And this has already been seen in the gold backed cryptocurrency markets with the establishment of OneGram being fully compliant under Sharia Law.

Gold prices appear ready move up even further as technicals showing higher highs and higher lows

One of the most bullish signals on technical charts for a given asset, security, or commodity is when price movements result in both higher highs, and higher lows.

And for gold this signal is right occurring as its price floor has moved up from $1310 to $1320 in just a few weeks, and on three occasions so far this year it has nearly broken through the strong resistance level of $1355.

As both economic and geo-political events, and central bank tightening policies continue to put pressure on global currencies as well as market liquidity, all these factors bode strongly for gold to move higher in the coming weeks and month.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 12 2018 - Gold, Bitcoin, and Cryptocurrency Report

The tiny nation of Malta is striving to become a cryptocurrency and blockchain hub in Europe

Outside of being a great tourist spot and a long-standing strategic naval port, the island of Malta has little to offer the global economy despite being a full member of the European Union.  However this may soon be changing as the nation of less than 500,000 residents is vying hard to become a major cryptocurrency and blockchain technology hub in Europe.

Another major cryptocurrency exchange is about to set up shop in Malta, cementing the small Mediterranean island nation’s status as a burgeoning hub for cryptocurrency startups. 
OKEx, the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency exchange as measured by daily trading volume, on Thursday announced that it will open an office in Malta and make it a “foundation for further OKEx growth.” 
“Malta’s Virtual Financial Asset Act is a solid foundation for the industry and the government to work together in fostering the nascent blockchain/digital asset industry. More specifically, Malta’s sound risk-based approach will help cultivate a responsible, compliant, and healthy ecosystem,” explained Tim Byun, chief risk officer and head of government relations at OKEx. 
Malta, on the other hand, has begun actively courting cryptocurrency firms. Government officials have said that they want to transform the EU member state into a “Blockchain Island” through the passage of blockchain-friendly legislation. 
Last month, it saw the first major fruits of those efforts, as fellow Hong Kong-based exchange Binance — currently the largest in the world — revealed that it would relocate its headquarters to Malta, rather than Japan as it had once planned. - CCN 

Trade wars and hot wars continue to be great catalysts for equity driven gold buying

Over the past few days one of the more interesting trends that has taken place has been the rush into buying equities at a time when the threat of both trade wars and hot wars (supposedly) have the markets rattled.  But even with these potentially disastrous events looming on the horizon, investors are not ignoring safe haven assets, they are simply buying different ones than in the past.

April 11 saw an incredibly weak auction for 10 year bonds, but gold on the other hand had one of its best single days of the year.  And this trend has not been limited to just yesterday as investment into the precious metal has been growing not primarily in the physical metals market, but in the equity driven ETF paper one.

As the anticipation for a US and China trade war continues, market participants are beginning to plan accordingly. As initially reported by Bloomberg, investors are starting to flock to gold as holdings in all bullion-backed exchange traded funds is at its highest level since 2013. 
The bullion-backed exchange traded funds have risen for four straight days which is the longest run since January. As a side note, the third largest commodity-linked ETF (Xetra-Gold) now has 177 million shares outstanding, which is the most since the fund started trading in 2007. 
Other notable gains from gold ETF’s include: 
China’s Bosera Gold ETF which is on track to see its most significant returns since being listed in 2014. The ETF has added $610.8 million this year. Also, iShares Gold Trust ETF has seen the addition of $1.49 billion in 2018. 
Clearly, the market is beginning to price in a trade war between two of the world ’s largest economies, and many fear the aftermath could be rampant inflation. – Gold Telegraph
Over the past few weeks, the gold price has consolidated a new floor of between $1320 and $1330, but still has been unable to break through and close above the strong resistance level of $1355.  But this may be coming fairly soon as the sector is on a trend of higher highs and higher lows, which forecasts an eventual bursting of that price ceiling.

Universities beginning to set up Masters Degree programs in cryptocurrency finance

The MBA (Masters in Business Administration) is one of the most lucrative degree programs a student can achieve.  And with the global financial system rushing headlong towards a completely digital platform which includes the Blockchain, it was only a matter of time before universities began to engineer programs dedicated towards this technology.

And now on April 12, a major university in Sao Paulo, Brazil has become one of the first colleges worldwide to accredit a Masters program dedicated to cryptocurrencies and cryptofinance.

Graphic courtesy of BTC Manager
Sao Paulo-based Fundacao Getulio Vargas {FGV} has announced what it claims is the country’s first Master’s degree in cryptofinance. 
Program coordinator at FGV, Ricardo Rochman, emphasized the need for greater educational resources to be made available on the subject of cryptocurrency, stating “It is a market with a profound lack of people with expertise. Cryptofinance has economic and financial fundamentals that are worth discussing, researching, and [being] taught.” 
Twenty-six-year-old economics student at FGV, Michele Araujo, attested to the benefits to studying the markets from a non-speculative perspective, stating “There is a conceptual gain of knowing both the practical applications of the technology and cryptocurrency as an alternative investment.” – Bitcoin News

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

CEO of New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) says that more Americans trust in cryptocurrencies more than they do the Fed

In a very interesting and perhaps frank revelation on April 9, the head of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) admitted during an interview with Bloomberg that more Americans trust in cryptocurrencies than they do the Federal Reserve.

Speaking to Bloomberg on the NYSE's strong push to make cryptos a main player in U.S. markets, CEO Jeffrey Sprecher should no longer be viewed simply as an 'alternative investment', and that co-opting them into the mainstream of paper trading is of high priority for his institution.

Graphic courtesy of Coin Telegraph
So popular is cryptocurrency as an investment option that even the chief executive of the International Exchange Inc. (ICE), owner of NYSE, admits that crypto is trusted more than the Federal Reserve. 
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, ICE CEO Jeffrey Sprecher said that cryptocurrencies shouldn’t be viewed as an alternative investment, and that ICE was considering a futures contract option in the future. Sprecher went on to add, “There is a trend here we can’t ignore in my mind, so I don’t discount it. People put more faith in a guy named Satoshi Nakamoto that no one has ever met than they do in the U.S. (Federal Reserve).” – Coin Geek

Russia may be soon joining in the global trade war by simply banning all U.S. products and imports

As the primary trade war between the U.S. and China suddenly shifts over into a proxy war between the Trump Administration and Russia over Syria, an interesting policy change may be coming out of Moscow that previously wasn't invoked during the past five years of sanctions directed against them.  And that is the complete banning of U.S. goods into Russia.

When the U.S. funded the Maidan coup back in 2013 to overthrow the Russian friendly government in Ukraine and bring the border nation closer to NATO, they instituted a number of economic sanctions against Moscow after Putin aided Eastern Ukraine from being taken over by the new puppet government.  However Moscow's response wasn't necessarily to go after the U.S. through the use of their own retaliatory sanctions, but instead strike at their allies in Europe which has proven fruitful in harming EU economies.

Now the game plan could be changing as on April 11, Russia's Prime Minister let it be known that the banning of all U.S. products into their economy could be the next step in retaliation to more U.S. imposed sanctions.

Moscow may ban US goods as part of a response to the latest sanctions imposed by Washington, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has suggested. 
“These can be not only the American securities… but also a whole range of other goods that are delivered to the Russian market or produced by American businesses on the territory of our country,”Medvedev said, answering questions from the Russian State Duma on Wednesday. 
The prime minister stated that Moscow's possible response to new Washington sanctions should be adequate and measured. "Response measures should be well-calculated, should not harm ourselves, they must be adequate," he said. 
Russia and the US do not have trade agreements, but both countries are members of the World Trade Organization. Trade between the two countries amounted to $24 billion by the end of 2017, of which $17 billion was Russian exports to America. – Russia Today

Gold price breaks through hard resistance level of $1355 as dollar falls and war drums escalate

In early morning trading on April 11, gold finally caught a bid and has gained over $16.00 to break through a longstanding resistance level of $1355.

The catalyst for this surge appears to be the growing escalation of a war in Syria that could potentially put the U.S. in conflict with Russia's support of the Assad government.

Meanwhile the dollar is also under some pressure as it has declined by 25 bps to sit at 89.38 on the index.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Individual, national, and global debt is now so high it is virtually impossible for any of it to be paid off

With central banks having destroyed savings for individuals across the Western world, there is hardly a single country out there that runs a capitalist system.  Instead thanks to economic growth being run solely on credit expansion, the new norm in the financial realm is a model known as Creditism.

Yet unlike capitalism, which has mechanisms (bankruptcies, debt dissolution) to deal with overheated expansions, creditism does not, and instead a credit based economy and monetary system requires ever increasing amount of debt/credit to be created to sustain itself.

This means in a nutshell that once a nation goes down the path of creditism, they will never be able to pay off their debts, thus ending in a complete collapse.

On April 10 the IFF came out with their latest quarterly report on global debt in which the world saw an increase of $4 trillion in Q4 2017 alone, bringing the amount of new debt created in 2017 to $20 trillion.  And as it stands now the amount of global debt rests at $237 trillion, which is 3.82 times (382%) of annual global GDP.

The IIF report, which also sources data from the IMF and BIS, found that the share of global debt remains well above 300% of global GDP, with mature market, i.e., DM, debt/GDP now at 382%. The silver lining: that number was slightly below recent levels, as increasing GDP growth in DMs helped reduce the debt-to-GDP ratio. However, this was more than offset by a surge in debt in emerging markets, where total debt/GDP is now well above 200%. 
The good news, if only temporarily, is that on a consolidated basis, global debt/GDP fell for the fifth consecutive quarter as global growth accelerated: the ratio is now around 317.8%, or 4% points below the all time high hit in Q43 2016. To be sure, even a modest slowdown in GDP growth, let alone a contraction, will promptly send the ratio surging to new all time highs. - Zerohedge
Now this number for global debt to gdp takes into consideration China's massive debt expansion as well as Europe and the U.S.'s.  But let's take a look at just America's national debt to gdp ratio which stands well above 100%.

Earlier this month the national debt crossed over the $21 trillion mark, and this does not include debt which will be created to fund the $1.3 trillion Omnibus spending bill.  And when you realize that America's GDP is between $17.5 and $18.3 trillion annually, then the nation's debt is much greater than its productivity, meaning that without the ability to create credit at will, the country is insolvent.

But of course with world governments being so fiscally irresponsible, and central banks wanting credit expansion to reach impossible heights, this has also led the American consumer to expand their debt use to record levels, which now stands even above the height of the Housing Bubble, and the period which led to the Financial Crisis of 2008.

Collapse of either the debt bubble or global currencies isn't a possibility in the future, it is an inevitability.  And with this in mind people must now be formulating plans for when this will occur, because the longer they wait, the worse off the consequences of a debt crisis will be for them and their livelihoods.

New cryptocurrency payment platform will allow crypto owners to move between exchanges and pay for goods and services with multiple currencies

When Bitcoin was first created, and later duplicated by over 1500 competitors, the original mission of cryptocurrencies was to provide an alternative means of payment for goods and services outside the realm of sovereign currencies and financial systems.  However since both consumers and retailers have failed to achieve a critical mass for this mission in the decade since Bitcoin has been active, cryptocurrencies in general have dissolved into simply becoming speculative asset trading vehicles.

Yet the goal for developers and exchanges has remained the same since 2009... and that is in working to create a universal payment platform by which crypto owners could use their tokens as money.  And finally there may be a company who has cracked this problem.

In Nov. 2017, Fidelium, a US-based project with South Korean roots, signed a contract with a major debit card provider to allow cryptocurrency owners to make payments practically anywhere, as well as to withdraw cash at affiliated ATMs. As the project team reported to Cointelegraph, the debit card will be integrated with the Fidelium’s Multiwallet app, which provides users with access to various exchanges from around the globe. 
Issuing debit cards for traders is not a regular procedure for online cryptocurrency exchanges. Although Fidelium is not a cryptocurrency exchange, the project includes a cross-exchange trading platform called Fortress that works more like an aggregator. Users can access any supported cryptocurrency exchange via the platform by undergoing a one-time Know Your Customer (KYC) procedure. 
In addition, Fidelium is developing the Multiwallet app to allow users to manage Fidelium tokens (FID tokens), Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other supported cryptocurrencies as well. 
A user with the app installed on their phone will be able to apply for Fidelium prepaid debit cards, giving them the option of withdrawing cash at affiliated ATMs and use the debit card to make purchases at stores. A card holder will be able to select any of the supported coins for payments. 
“By partnering up with a payment processor, we aim to enable quick and convenient cryptocurrency spending, anywhere in the world, without any special restrictions or waiting time” claims the project website. – Coin Telegraph
While this idea and platform has incredible potential to expand the use of cryptocurrencies in commerce around the world, one problem still remains which could hinder a critical mass of individuals from being willing to transfer over from their current fiat monetary system, to one in which cryptocurrencies become their primary means of payment.  And that issue is the volatility that remains constant within the cryptocurrency sector.  And until this problem is addressed by regulators or the industry itself,  the chances of cryptocurrencies replacing the use of standard fiat currencies in commerce remains quite limited.

As many cryptocurrencies have collapsed over 70% so far in 2018, these ones have thrived despite the volatility

One of the more interesting anecdotes for the cryptocurrency sector in 2018 is that none of the top 20 cryptos by market cap have had a positive year so far, and in fact, many have actually declined by as much as 70% since the middle of December.

However there are a number of standouts that have thrived so far here in 2018, and below is a list of these profitable cryptos.

Bitcoin is down 58% in three months and down 66% from its all-time high. Most cryptocurrencies have shed even more since January, but a few have outperformed bitcoin. The handful that are in the green, such as ontology (up 110%) are only up because they weren’t introduced until 2018 was well under way. Had ontology, which was airdropped to NEO holders, been launched last year, there’s every likelihood it too would be in the red. 
Of the cryptocurrencies that were trading at the start of this year, just two assets are in the green. Digixdao, a gold-backed token, is up 12% in three months, and bytom, a Chinese altcoin is up 2%. Neither of these two coins has produced the sort of return that the hodl strategy was conceived for. In fact, hodling through 2018 is one of the worst strategies a trader could have plumped for. That’s easy to say in hindsight of course. Short of sitting in tether for months, the most effective buy-and-sell strategy would have involved one of the following altcoins. – Bitcoin News
Perhaps the biggest irony to be garnered from this list is that the majority of them were created recently (as in 2018), and most are expected to eventually have their own collapse in the near future as crypto traders move from token to token like locusts migrating away from ravaged fields.

Monday, April 9, 2018

The Daily Economist update for April 9 2018 -Financial Market and Economic Wrapup

The first rule of Prepper Club is you don't post on Facebook about Prepper Club

Besides California being a place where the protecting of individual liberties has never been a high priority for the state's government, it is also not the most optimum place for someone to establish a residence that is secure in the advent of a financial or societal breakdown.  So with this in mind if one is a prepper living in this state, the first rule of course is to never let anyone know that you are a prepper, especially on social media.

And unfortunately for one couple who published their prepping routines and libertarian ideologies on Facebook, they ended up paying the price.
It is no longer a conspiracy theory, but a fact that people are being specifically targeted for their participation in what some call “prepping” and others dub survivalism. A couple from California had their home raided and were held without charges for making non-violent posts on Facebook about survival techniques and thought-provoking discussions. 
Leach was also able to get her story out to The Free Thought Project. The Leaches are the owners of a tactical supply company. Leach and her husband were violently arrested and then detained for hours with no explanation while their home was raided by a SWAT Team and their assets were seized. But it gets worse. 
The couple was detained for over 13 hours without charges before they were told the reason for their arrest. The subject that surfaced immediately were some high capacity pistol magazines the state patrol had seized then returned the year before, but that didn’t seem to be the crux of the incident. 
More disturbing were the stacks of printed pages from my social media accounts, particularly those things which criticize police and government overreach, police violence, my personal ideologies regarding self-governance and the inalienable rights we are afforded as human beings, and even memes and jokes they found, as parts of evidence to request a search warrant, including posts of a very subjective and ironic nature. – SHTF Plan