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Showing posts with label currency. Show all posts
Showing posts with label currency. Show all posts

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Mainstream business analysts finally get on board with Bitcoin as they start to advocate ownership of cryptocurrencies in clients portfolios

It is ironic that as mainstream business shows such as CNBC, Bloomberg, and Fox Business News vilified Bitcoin and all cryptocurrencies for years, they are all of a sudden now getting on board once the digital currencies showed themselves to be the best performing assets of 2017.

Yet this acknowledgement of Bitcoin, Ether, Ripple, and many other crypto's being a viable investment appears to be only the beginning as more and more investment managers are advocating to their clients that cryptocurrencies need to be a vital part of their investment portfolios.

Boris Schlossberg of BK Asset Management has joined the cadre of investment advisors who see bitcoin as a way for investors to hedge their bets against market uncertainty. Schlossberg, according to CNBC, sees bitcoin as an addition to an investment portfolio in the wake of political uncertainty. 
Schlossberg sees parallels between bitcoin and gold, and he noted that bitcoin is being called the “new gold,” due to its ability to retain value over time. 
He noted that bitcoin is holding steady following its 92% rally this year. Speaking Wednesday on “Trading Nation,” Schlossberg said the cryptocurrency is holding at steady highs, and that when there is a big move for any type of instrument, there is usually some continuation. 
Bitcoin is clearly signaling more demand, Schlossberg observed. He favors it as a hedge play moving forward. - Crypto Coins News
Additionally, a contributor to CNBC on May 28 analyzed Bitcoin the same way he would an investment and highlighted the risk - reward potential that it and other cryptocurrencies offer.
"I wish I’d invested in Bitcoin," is a response I usually hear when I tell people how much they could have made off the cryptocurrency if they had bought it at the start. Just to be clear, if you bought US$100 worth of Bitcoin in 2010 when it was worth 0.003 cents each, you’d be sitting on more than $88 million. 
It all sounds so easy. But for regular investors in Bitcoin - those not heavily involved in the cryptocurrency world - Bitcoin has a confusing reputation. It’s known to be highly volatile with wild price swings, but at the same time some, such as Bobby Lee, the co-founder and chief executive of Bitcoin exchange BTCC, have called it a safe-haven asset. 
"When the existing money system has problems, people turn to Bitcoin, sort of like people used to go to gold in the old days," Mr Lee told CNBC in a recent interview. - The National AE
While most in the crypto world believes Bitcoin is a currency, most of Wall Street and the rest of the mainstream financial world believes it to be a security.  And with more and more brokers and institutions starting to advocate its purchase and ownership of cryptos in personal and joint portfolios, the volatility will continue to be high, and everyone who owns a cryptocurrency must respect this and trade accordingly.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

At $1700 per coin and climbing, is Bitcoin this year's best performing currency, or best performing investment?

It took barely 48 hours for Bitcoin to jump from $1600 per coin to over $1700, but that is exactly what took place as of this morning on May 9.  But at the same time there was an interesting caveat that also took place that begs the question of whether Bitcoin should be considered the best performing currency to date in 2017, or instead the best performing security (investment).

If Bitcoin is supposed to be a currency that runs in competition to the dollar, yen, euro, etc..., then by all monetary logic it should be moving in opposition to each individual currency that it is priced in.  However when Bitcoin jumped to over $1700 earlier today, it did so when the dollar had strengthened by over 100 bps on the dollar index, meaning that it was moving in tandem, rather than in opposition to the dollar.

Those are the actions of a security rather than than a currency.

Bitcoin Chart:


Dollar Chart:


Another interesting thing to ponder is who exactly is buying Bitcoin right now?  We know from public reports that investors/entrepreneurs like the Winklevoss Twins own between $10 - 25 million worth of Bitcoin as they bid to put the crypto-currency into a financialized ETF, and Billionaire Michael Novogratz has stated that he has put 10% of more of his wealth into both Bitcoin and Ether coin.

So perhaps the question that has to be asked is not if Bitcoin is a currency versus an investment, but what is the market itself saying Bitcoin is based on its price movement, and how it is relating to all the world's currencies it is denominated against.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Money psychology: Is Bitcoin price already too high for desirability as a currency?

The advent of Bitcoin, as well as rise of the blockchain and its growing number of different crypto-currencies, is bringing forth a great debate on whether these constructs of digital money are the wave of the future for consumers, savers, and investors.

But there are a few very interesting things that are bing missed by most individuals in the Bitcoin eco-sphere, and these are the psychology of money, and the fact that as Bitcoin has now crossed over $1600 per coin, and is being forecast to possibly go as high as $4000 by the end of the year, has the crypto-currency priced itself out of the general market?  And perhaps even more, has it already destroyed its psychological value to individuals as a viable form of money?

A layman's definition of what money is can be determined as this:  An idea backed by confidence.  And for something to be considered a medium of exchange (money) it must have the intrinsic properties that all monies have (store of value, divisible, fungible, portable, etc...), but it also must have the confidence, be it forced (by government), or voluntarily accepted (by critical mass of consumers and retailers), to act as a recognized medium of exchange.

Thus as the price of Bitcoin in dollars as well as other currencies skyrockets due to speculation and investor sentiment, the question that has to be asked is whether or not Bitcoin has priced itself out of the ability to become an accepted currency, simply by the fact that the majority of individuals today can only afford to purchase fractions of the currency, rather than whole Bitcoin's themselves.

Picture this.  A person has $20 they can afford to use to purchase Bitcoin, so they create a digital wallet and go through an exchange to buy some of the crypto-currency.  Now this individual understands the basics of monetary division when it comes to dollars as they have used quarters, dimes, nickles, and pennies for nearly all of their lives.

But at today's price, $20 will buy that individual only .0125 of a Bitcoin, which in physical terms would equate to a penny and a quarter of a penny.  So psychologically, that individual has exchanged $20 for a penny.


Now of course in the crypto-currency realm .0125% of a Bitcoin is not valued at one cent, but you can see the psychology of this as people used to dealing in round numbers and limited fractions in their money now have to go outside the box to try to come to the understanding that it will be unlikely they will ever own a single full Bitcoin since more than half of Americans alone cannot even afford to pay $500 if a sudden emergency required them to come up with those funds in addition to their normal budget.

Then of course there is the reality that the amount of retailers who deal in Bitcoin is still quite limited, and the marketing of Bitcoin as a viable medium of exchange in the mainstream is almost negligible.  And also the fact remains that if people don't see Bitcoin promoted in the mainstream media, or shown in some viable application from the commercial advertising they are programmed to trust, then Bitcoin, as well as other crypto-currencies, will remain as fringe ideas and concepts, or as simply a construct traded in financial markets under the guise of a speculative investment.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Japanese firms rushing in to try to stake claim to Bitcoin exchange license following crypto-currencies legalization

Like a stock IPO, there is nothing greater to corporations, banks, and financiers than the advent of a new industry they can seek to dominate and monetize.  And with Japan recently legalizing Bitcoin as a viable currency within their economy, the number of entities rushing in to stake a claim to the limited number of Bitcoin exchange licenses is growing.

So far at least 18 companies have filed an application for a Bitcoin exchange license, and this will only grow as the crypto-currency's value escalates, and the number of individuals wanting to own some increases.

Image result for japan bitcoin
Eighteen companies are applying for the new license required to operate a cryptocurrency exchange in Japan. 
The licensing scheme, which Japan introduced in April, aims to ensure exchanges operate in full compliance with financial regulation and anti-fraud procedures.
As a result of the applications, some of which come from extant Japanese exchanges such as bitFlyer, ten new players are slated to debut on the market to meet a forecast surge in demand. 
These include SBI Holdings’ SBI Virtual Currencies, GMO Internet, Kabu.com Securities and Money Partners Group, Nikkei reports on Tuesday. 
Japan is witnessing something of a Bitcoin renaissance in 2017. A giant uptick in trading quickly combined with a cementing of regulatory perspective see business deals come thick and fast. - Coin Telegraph
Perhaps one of the few questions remaining regarding Bitcoin is whether the crypto-currency will eventually function primarily as an alternative form of money, or whether it will become dominated through financialization and speculation as most currencies and commodities are today through derivatives and rigged Forex trading.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Bitcoin finally to function as a currency as Japanese retailers rush to allow the digital money as payment

In the opinion of the staff here at The Daily Economist, a large number of Bitcoin advocates over the past few years have sold out the original mission of the crypto-currency as being primarily a form of decentralized money that individuals and entities could use as a medium of exchange for goods and services and instead have welcomed its financialization by both Wall Street type markets, and third party conduits.  By this we mean that Bitcoin has been seen and purchased more as a speculative investment versus used as a form of money.

But with the Japanese government suddenly buying into the crypto-currency last week, and setting forth a regulatory framework to allow it to function as a medium of exchange within their nation's borders, Japanese retailers on April 5 are now rushing in to get on board to accept Bitcoin in their online and brick and mortar stores.

Image result for bitcoin is money
A few days after Japan recognized bitcoin as a legal method of payment, two of the country’s biggest retailers have sealed cooperation agreements with bitcoin exchanges to begin accepting the digital currency. 
The two leading retail groups, Bic Camera and Recruit Lifestyle, have announced trials of a bitcoin payment option, according to Japanese daily Nikkei. 
Bic Camera, a consumer chain selling electronics, has partnered with the Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange bitFlyer. The retailer will test the digital currency in two outlets. 
Consumers will be able to pay up to 100,000 yen ($900) using bitcoin, getting reward points at the same rate as for cash payments. 
Recruit Lifestyle, the retail branch of human resources conglomerate Recruit Holdings, is cooperating with another Tokyo bitcoin exchange operator Coincheck to include bitcoin payment option into its AirRegi application. 
The step will enable over 260,000 outlets across the country to start accepting bitcoin. Coincheck will process payments made by consumers using the app, converting bitcoins into yen and transferring the funds to the store. 
Japan is poised to become one of the leading cryptocurrency markets. Nearly 4,500 Japanese stores are currently accepting bitcoin while over 700,000 outlets actively use other modes of digital payments. - Russia Today

Monday, March 20, 2017

The empire strikes back as IRS expands hunt for Bitcoin users who don't report capital gains taxes

Sovereign governments around the world have instituted a number of different programs and processes to deal with the rise of crypto-currencies, and the use of ones like Bitcoin to function outside their controlled monetary systems.  In China for example, new guidelines were put in place for Bitcoin exchanges that now require identity checks and monitoring of all transactions.

But the U.S. has chosen a different path, and it stems from a ruling in 2014 by the U.S. district court of jurisdiction in Southern New York where judges determined that Bitcoin was an security rather than a currency, and as such was to be treated like an investment requiring the filing of capital gains taxes on the holder's tax returns.

And while little actual investigation or pursuit of individuals failing to file their Bitcoin profits with the IRS has taken place over the past two to three years, that appears to be changing now with the government's monitoring of exchanges like Coinbase and their ramping up of their intention to go after individuals who do not report their Bitcoin capital gains profits on their annual tax returns.

Image result for bitcoin government
The Internal Revenue Service revealed new details about its investigation into tax evasion related to bitcoin, filing court documents that suggest only a tiny percentage of virtual currency owners are reporting profits or losses in their annual returns. 
The new documents, filed Thursday in San Francisco federal court, come in the midst of a closely-watched legal fight between the IRS and Coinbase, a popular service for buying and selling bitcoins that hosts over a million customer accounts. 
The dispute began last year when the IRS issued a sweeping summons for Coinbase to turn over a vast amount of customer data, including every customer account as well as detailed transaction records. 
Coinbase claimed the IRS demands are illegally broad and refused to comply, which in turn led the IRS to file a federal lawsuit last week to enforce the summons. - Fortune

Friday, March 17, 2017

Russia and Japan show that the future of bilateral trade may involve ditching sovereign currencies in favor of digital ones

With banks working feverishly to creating blockchain based currencies for use in interbank settlements, a new idea on March 17 may spell an even greater future for sovereign use of digital money.

This is because both Russia and Japan may soon be planning to experiment with the creation of a digital currency in their joint bi-lateral economic agreements over the contested Kuril Islands.

Russia, or rather the former Soviet Union, had co-opted the islands from Japan at the tail end of World War II.  And ever since that time Japan's desire for their repatriation had been a major stumbling block in relations between the two countries.

But late last year Russia offered to allow Japan the opportunity to play a significant role in the economic expansion of the Kuril Islands, similar in ways to how Turkey and Greece politically deal with the ownership of Cyprus.  And at the center of this agreement is the foundation to make the islands into a jointly run economic enterprise.

Yet one of the biggest road blocks in this agreement was in determining which currency would dominate the economy... ie... the ruble or the yen.  And it is here that Japan is now suggesting the creation of an entirely new digital currency that would be unique to the islands and the trade agreement, and through which it could be easily transferable into whichever currency customers and retailers desired.

Japanese Prime Minister's Shinzo Abe  and Russian President Vladimir Putin

Image Courtesy of Sputnik/ Alexei Druzhinin
Tokyo has prepared a range of offers to Moscow for joint economic projects on Russia's Kuril Islands, according to Japan's national broadcaster NHK. 
The package of proposals, including tourism and fisheries, as well as a common electronic currency, will be presented during the Russia-Japan consultations on March 18 in Tokyo. 
According to NHK, the new regional currency could be used instead of the Russian ruble and the Japanese yen and is expected to contribute to the development of the southern Kurils and the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido. 
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday that Moscow is ready to review Tokyo’s proposals, adding that all the projects must comply with Russian law. 
"Of course, we believe such projects can only be implemented if they are not inconsistent with Russian law. We are ready to assess Japan’s proposals," she said. 
Agreement on joint Russian-Japanese economic activities in the South Kuril Islands was reached in December during President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Tokyo. In February, Japan established a special Council to consider cooperative projects in fisheries, seafood, tourism, environmental protection, and health in the economic zone. - Russia Today

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Bitcoin use surging in countries who have bad monetary systems, or large outdoor market environments

The tale of Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies has become two-fold.  First, it is a potent medium of exchange for high net worth individuals who want to transfer wealth from one currency to another. And secondly, it has functioned as originally intended in places like Venezuela and Morocco, where governments have either destroyed their own sovereign currencies through bad monetary policies, or where large outdoor markets facilitate the use of cash in the majority of their transactions.
On February 2, Venezuela's leading bitcoin exchange, SurBitcoin, was forced to suspend operations when its bank account was revoked. According to Rodrigo Souza, who runs SurBitcoin's trading platform, the bank closed the account in anticipation of a nationwide crackdown on bitcoin use in Venezuela after the police raided a warehouse with 11,000 mining computers. SurBitcoin is in talks with other banks, and hopefully it will be operating again soon. 
As he predicted, SurBitcoin's closure has led to a surge in peer-to-peer trading. LocalBitcoins, a site where users connect to buy and sell bitcoins, makes its trade volume public through an API. (See the chart below.) Last week, 464 bitcoins were exchanged in Venezuela on LocalBitcoins, the equivalent of nearly $470,000 dollars based on today's price. That's close to a 50 percent increase in volume since SurBitcoin stopped operating. (LocalBitcoins' previous trading volume peak was 377 bitcoins the week of October 15, 2016, but, at the time, bitcoin was worth almost 40 percent less than it is today.) - Reason
LocalBitcoins Venezuelan volume (BTC) |||

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies use are spreading rapidly in the Kingdom of Morocco on the blind side of the global Satoshi community. Professional crypto trader and developer, Aziz Elmi estimates that more than $200,000 of Bitcoin trading is done daily under the radar in his native Morocco. 
Elmi is a leading member of the crypto community in his country with a huge following and the main developer of AtlasCoin, one of Africa's only two cryptocurrencies. He is positive Morocco has a lot to offer to the digital currency world.
Morocco's unwillingness to open up enough to the rest of the world may account for the silent revolution that is going on there. Some pundits think Morocco might be ahead of some of the countries in Africa. Morocco is perceived as leaders in Bitcoin adoption, like Kenya, Ghana and even Nigeria. 
There is the general confidence in the Moroccan cryptocurrency community that there is great potential in their IT arena, especially in cryptocurrency coding and trading. This combined with the huge investments they are making will advance the Kingdom to be at the forefront of adoption in Africa, if the government will regulate the sector fairly. 
“More people and merchants are gradually integrating Bitcoin and other altcoins in their daily lives by accepting payments via Bitcoin. We believe the government should, therefore, intervene accordingly so as to regulate the circulation of Bitcoin reasonably," Elmi proposed. - Coin Telegraph
Bitcoin was created as a way for individuals to function in the global financial system without having to deal with devaluing sovereign currencies, or centralized control over money by governments and central banks.  And in the end crypto-currencies like Bitcoin and others will flourish more in most non-G20 economies, and most likely could have aided individuals in places like Cyprus and Greece when their own banking systems and economies collapsed over the past seven years.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Gold price should be well over $20,000 per ounce today if held to historical relation of gold to global GDP

Analysts have looked at several different measures as to why the current gold price is only around $1200 per ounce, especially as global money supplies have skyrocketed since the 1980's.  And even here at The Daily Economist we have published numerous articles pointing out the willful manipulation of gold by governments, central banks, and the markets that act as the platform for this manipulation.

But looking at gold from both a fundamental and technical perspective, its significance in supporting economic growth through the backstopping of currencies cannot be denied... and why the move in 1971 by President Richard Nixon to remove that gold backstop from the dollar reserve currency was a mistake that was paralleled by the previous controller of the global reserve (Britain) back in the 1931.


Graphic courtesy of SRS Rocco Report

The most powerful banker in the early part of the 20th century stated that "Gold is money, everything else is credit."  And it is this difference that determines whether economic growth is real, or simply an artificial creation that lasts until the fuel of debt (credit) runs out.

When stock markets crashed at the end of the 1920's, their boom had been fueled by cheap money, and borrowing on margin.  And it is interesting to note that these same markets did not return to their 1929 all-time highs until the 1950's, which was about 6-7 years after the world returned to a proxy form of a gold standard following the conference at Bretton Woods.  And the markets then went on to steadily rise until the late 1960's, when the U.S. decided to artificially expand the money supply to fund the war in Vietnam.

So why are these relations important?  Because there is still one relation we have not mentioned here that involves gold when it was historically part of the world's money system.  And that relation is Gold Supply/Value to GDP.

As we can see, the value of world monetary gold stocks of $11 billion was a third (33%) of the $32 billion of global GDP.  So, for each dollar of monetary gold, the world economies produced three times the GDP. 
Now, let’s look at the situation today.  According to the World Bank, global GDP fell to $73,892 billion ($73.9 trillion) in 2015.  As I mentioned in a previous article, this was down 5.7% from $78.4 trillion in 2014:
What a difference in 86 years… aye?  Today, the value of world monetary gold stocks is only 1.7% ($1.28 trillion) compared to global GDP of $73.9 trillion.  I calculated the value of present monetary gold stocks by multiplying the current 33,250 metric tons of official gold holdings by $1,200 an ounce.  Of course, we don’t know the TRUE official gold holdings figure, but this at least provides us a guideline. - SRS Rocco Report
In 1929 the dollar price of gold was $20.42, and the total value of above ground gold was approximately $11 billion.  This meant that the gold supply supported global GDP at a rate of 3:1.

However 86 years later, with the gold price being approximately $1200 and where there is a much greater supply of the metal having been mined and owned by governments and central banks, the ratio of GDP to the gold value is now a whopping 57.59 (close to 60) :1... or nearly 20 times what it was in 1931 when gold was removed from the reserve currency by the British.

Thus taking this historic relation to today, it would mean the price of gold to support a $73 trillion global GDP should be nearly 20 times what it is, or at least $20,000 per ounce.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Newly disclosed documents show CIA involved in gold manipulation and pushing IMF's SDR as a 'gold replacement'

Earlier this week, the CIA released millions of formerly classified documents that involved many of their plans and operations over the past 50 years.  And one interesting disclosure involves how the CIA was focused on controlling the gold markets through the London Fix, and how pushing the IMF's SDR could potentially be a replacement for the world's reliance on gold as money.

CIA Concerns of Gold Market Manipulation (link) -  Document: Intelligence Memorandum - The World Gold Market- Semi Annual Review January - June 1970. 
The 1970 CIA memorandum reviewed in the video below shows a CIA concerned about gold market manipulation by the Swiss whom they characterize as "in an excellent position to influence the London free market fixing." The memorandum points to "strong circumstantial evidence that Zurich bullion dealers, under the leadership of the Union Bank of Switzerland are again manipulating the gold markets
This manipulation in turn was interfering with an IMF agreement with South Africa to sell its gold to the IMF under certain conditions when it could not sell its newly mined out put on the free market:.  
“While the [IMF] agreement essentially provides a floor of $35 an ounce for South African gold, it guarantees a free market supply large enough to keep the free market price at or near the floor at least through 1970.” 
The CIA memorandum bemoans Swiss manipulation of the gold market: “There is  strong circumstantial evidence that Zurich bullion dealers, under the leadership of the Union Bank of Switzerland are again manipulating the gold markets” “London bullion dealers had hoped that the 1969 agreement between the IMF and South Africa would restore London as the focal point of the world gold market. It has not.” 
Ironically, as page 5 of the memorandum notes, much of the recent gold fix rigging exposed in recent year, was correctly anticipated by the CIA some 47 years ago:"Manipulation of the free market price is suggested by the extremely narrow price range that prevailed for eleven consecutive weeks -- from later January through mid-March. During this period, more than 85% of all morning and afternoon fixings fell within the $34.97 to $35.01 range, with nearly 40% of all quotations set at exactly $35.00.   
Moreover, Swiss bullion dealers are in an excellent position to influence the London free market fixing. At each of some 255 morning fixing a year, the manager of Rothschild's bullion and foreign exchange department suggests an opening price based on a previous half hour of intensive telephone conversations with people at the Bank of England and a host of others, mainly dealers in Switzerland. 
Representatives of the four other houses are in constant telephone contact with their trading rooms and these in turn are in direct communication with as many as a dozen key clients scattered across Europe. The result is that supply and demand conditions in Zurich are strongly reflected at the London fixings." - Zerohedge
And this is what they had to say about pushing the SDR:
CIA Talks up the IMF's  Strategic Drawing Rights (link) - Document: Intelligence Memorandum - Special Drawing Rights: Paper Gold In Action - September 1970 
The gold standard under Bretton Woods Agreement was showing cracks in 1970. The CIA memorandum notes: “the only available means of increasing reserves abroad was through continued deficits in the US balance of payments, But the US no longer had excess gold reserves and other countries had become reluctant to accept large additions to their dollar holdings.” 
The CIA memorandum reflects the tenuous position of the gold market and the inclusion of gold in the international monetary system just prior to the break up of the Bretton Woods Agreement in 1971. The CIA viewed the newly created SDR as a potential replacement for gold calling it:  “a new type of liquidity as permanent as gold it self - to insure increases in liquidity”... “The SDR is a form of money and credit”
“SDRs can not be extinguished by being exchanged by gold -they can only be traded among central banks. And unlike gold, there are no private uses for SDRs that compete with their use as an international currency.” 
CIA however concludes that “Nevertheless, SDRs are not soon likely to supplant the dollar in the international monetary system. Foreign central banks need working balances which are presently denominated largely in dollars.” 
The primary foundation of the American empire was its ability to control the global reserve currency through the issuance of the U.S. dollar.  And when physical gold started to show to the world how fragile that currency actually was, even the CIA became involved in the manipulation of the gold price, pushing disinformation on its utility, and ensuring that peoples in the West remained under the dominion of a devaluing currency that would sustain the empire into the 21st century.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Bitcoin price could surpass gold in dollars by the end of the week

As the price of Bitcoin crushed through the $1100 resistance level with great gusto last evening, it appears to only be a matter of time before the crypto-currency reaches and surpasses its all-time high of $1165.

But perhaps what is even more astonishing is that Bitcoin is now only $20 from equaling the dollar price for gold, which currently stands at the same all-time high price that Bitcoin achieved back in 2013.
graph
Bitcoin prices are up $100 on the day, having already shot past the $1,100 mark. 
Markets have risen nearly 10% over the course of the day’s trading, according to data from the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (BPI), which hit a high of $1,141 at time of writing before falling back. 
With the move, global exchange averages have inched closer to the BPI's all-time high of $1,165.89, set on 30th November, 2013, leaving them roughly $25 below that level. 
The digital currency's price appreciated sharply after crossing the $1,100 line, quickly spiking to a high of $1,129.28, before meeting some resistance. - Coindesk
This anomaly in price between gold and Bitcoin is centered around a two-fold dichotomy, where manipulation of one is much easier for the banks to accomplish since they can do so simply by dumping thousands of bogus paper contracts.  And at the other end of the spectrum is the ongoing global currency crisis that is occurring from Venezuela to China, making it much easier for individuals and investors to move their money around using Bitcoin rather than through purchasing gold or silver and trying to utilize them as a medium of exchange.

While there may some short-term resistance for Bitcoin to reach and surpass its all-time high price of $1165, the chances are very good we could see this happen before the market close on Friday in Asia.  But either way, with Bitcoin, gold, or silver, all three have quickly become the money of choice for people seeking to protect themselves from the cash bans, capital controls, and overall destruction of the sovereign money they primarily use.

Monday, January 2, 2017

China progressing into 2017 to dominate the Bitcoin and gold markets

On Jan. 2, Bitcoin crossed over $1000 as the Chinese continue to rush into the crypto-currency as a means of bypassing capital controls on currency leaving the country.  And in an interesting and growing trend emerging from the second largest economy in the world, a new web bot forecast has the Chinese government actually capitulating to the power of Bitcoin and promoting its use within their borders, and along the newly emerging Silk Road.

Cliff High (Web bots): The new prediction sets we have are showing us swapping over to RMB as China takes over the emotional control if you will of the Bitcoin world, and alot of their rushing into that is fear of the currencies. 
Greg Hunter (USA Watchdog): They are fearful of the U.S. dollar? 
CH: Nope, the Chinese people... the China Pop (population)... and the China Pop is going to get really freaked out about the value of their own currency, and there is going to be more of a tendency and a rush into Bitcoin. 
Now at some point this year, China's official authorities are going to just give into that, and there's going to be a change to their official approach to this whole thing. 
GH: And they're going to say go ahead and use Bitcoin. 
CH: Boy if you read out report you are going to be staggerd... it's going to be more than that.  China is going to rush out, because of the way they do things... the Chinese authorities know their existence, their very lives depend on the health, wealth, and happiness of the people below them, and so someone is going to come up with an idea to extend digital currency... Bitcoin, and we have the language there, even to people who trade goats now. 
And the idea is, China, along with their Silk Road train from Beijing to Berlin, is going to extend out fiber optics and bring in over a billion people into the internet in the shortest possible time.  And at the same time they're going to spread out the Bitcoin ethos through there. - USA Watchdog
In addition to Bitcoin expansion within their borders and all along the Silk Road, China is progressing rapidly towards becoming the world's largest gold market, that will now include jewelry in their platform.

Status as one of the world’s biggest bullion importers, participation in the gold fix at the London exchange and a plan to establish a jewelry gold investment center in Shanghai has turned China into one of the leading players in the global gold market in 2016. - Sputnik News
As currencies and bonds around the world teeter on the precipice of another crash or outright collapse, the future of finance is rushing away from these fiat forms of currency and returning to an era of sound money.  And with supplies of gold and silver being quickly gobbled up by consumers all throughout the Far East, the trends are signalling very strongly that right now is beyond the time in which individuals can get their metals and Bitcoin to be prepared for the coming paradigm shift.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Venezuela's Maduro halts cash ban as desperate people left with no choice but to give up their children

On Dec. 18, Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro halted his policy from earlier in the week of banning the 100 bolivar currency as the economic situation in the country became even more desperate.  And in addition to the growing starvation, riots, and looting that has emerged from the nation's mass inflation, some Venezuelans are having to give away their children as they can no longer afford to feed them amid the economic chaos.


Struggling to feed herself and her seven children, Venezuelan mother Zulay Pulgar asked a neighbor in October to take over care of her six-year-old daughter, a victim of a pummeling economic crisis. 
The family lives on Pulgar's father's pension, worth $6 a month at the black market rate, in a country where prices for many basic goods are surpassing those in the United States.
"It's better that she has another family than go into prostitution, drugs or die of hunger," the 43-year-old unemployed mother said, sitting outside her dilapidated home with her five-year-old son, father and unemployed husband. 
With average wages less than the equivalent of $50 a month at black market rates, three local councils and four national welfare groups all confirmed an increase in parents handing children over to the state, charities or friends and family. 
The government does not release data on the number of parents giving away their children and welfare groups struggle to compile statistics given the ad hoc manner in which parents give away children and local councils collate figures. 
Still, the trend highlights Venezuela's fraying social fabric and the heavy toll that a deep recession and soaring inflation are taking on the country with the world's largest oil reserves. - Reuters


Sadly, the people's trust in their socialist government, along with in their fiat currency, is partially to blame why few Venezuelan's were prepared for the quick, and in some cases deadly, effects that escalating high inflation has caused for their nation and economy.  And because of the growing loss of confidence in the Bolivar, as well as in access to hard currencies such as the dollar, stories have broken out of those who owned a little gold and silver being able to not only survive this ongoing economic collapse, but actually thrive in it.
Tom Cloud: We got an incredible email this morning from one of our clients who's brother in law is a missionary down in Venezuela.  And he was telling us that in Venezuela, once ounce of silver will buy you food for three or four months... one ounce of silver.  And an ounce of gold will buy you a house. - The Daily Economist
While many Americans believe that what is taking place right now in Venezuela, India, and in Greece over the past six years could ever come to America, then all one needs to do is look back 80 years ago in our history to see what the Great Depression did for a large portion of our citizens following a financial crash that involved stock markets, debt, derivatives, the collapse of a housing bubble, and the overall banking system.
From one perspective, the story emerging from the Great Depression can be described as one of family "disorganization" and deprivation. Marriage rates declined, although they started to rise in 1934, and the trend toward decreasing birthrates, already underway, accelerated during the 1930s. Although divorce rates also declined, this seems to have been largely the consequence of the inability to pay lawyers' fees; desertion rates increased during the decade. In some cases, two or more families crowded together in apartments or homes designed as single-family residences. Some 250,000 youths were on the road, travelling by freight train or hitchhiking in order to find work or more favorable circumstances. From 1929 to 1931, the number of children entering custodial institutions increased by 50 percent. In many economically deprived families, children suffered from malnutrition and inadequate clothing. - IC.Galegroup

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

India takes war on cash to next level as they begin direct raids and confiscation of gold, jewelry, and cash from the people

Make no mistake, the government of India has declared war on its people, and only time will tell if their actions lead to a full scale revolution.

Back in November Prime Minister Modi declared the top two denominations of currency to no longer be valid as legal tender, and the populace had until Dec. 15 to turn in their monetary notes to their local bank.  However, this was met with a combination of trepidation and anger as the Indian economy runs primary on cash for transactions, with an estimated 98% of all commerce occurring using physical currency.

In response Modi suddenly cut short the time frame in which the people could trade in their now outdated bills and as a result, the people have rushed to jewelers to trade their stash of currency for gold and gold products.

And now we are finding out that the initial war on cash has suddenly shifted to a total war on wealth, or at the very least, a war on gold as news of armed raids on people, their homes, and their gold by the government is coming out from on the ground reports.

Global financial repression picks up steam, led by India. After declaring large denomination notes illegal, India now targets gold. 
It’s not just gold bars or bullion. The government has raided houses, no questions asked, confiscating jewelry. 
For background to this article, please see my November 27 article Cash Chaos in India, 86% of Money in Circulation Withdrawn; Cash Still King in Japan. 
Large denomination means 500-rupee ($7.30) and 1,000-rupee notes ($14.60), which account for more than 85 percent of the money supply. They are no longer legal tender, effective immediately. 
As one might imagine, chaos ensued. And it continues. - Mish Talk

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Price of gold in dollars well over $3600 in India as currency crisis threatens to bring their economy to a halt

As news continues to come in from the nation of India following the government's order to eliminate certain currency notes from their monetary system, the rush to both trade in, and move money out of banks has been the singular thought for hundreds of millions of people.

And as part of this monetary transfer has been the massive demand for gold, especially since Modi pushed for a suspension of imports of the yellow metal last week.  And according to many sources, the price of gold in dollars has now reached over $3600 per ounce as the people move to get rid of their rupees and into the one tangible asset that weathers all crises.

Measure planned to prevent people from hoarding cash and generating income that could evade taxes, according to government officials with direct knowledge of the matter. 
Planned measures include limit on large cash withdrawals from bank, the officials said, asking not to be identified citing rules on speaking to media. 
Budget, due in February, may have steps to encourage use of checks, credit and debit cards. 
Purchase of gold jewelry said to be made more stringent to prevent switching of asset from cash. 
Finance Ministry spokesman D. S. Malik couldn’t be reached for comment. - Zerohedge
Perhaps the most interesting and destructive thing to come from Prime Minister Modi's move against the Indian currency is the fact that productivity has virtually stopped as people are spending several hours per day swapping over $60 worth of rupees due to the capital control laws limiting withdrawals.

When Venezuela collapsed into hyper-inflation a few months ago, it was reported on the ground that an ounce of silver would buy you 3-4 months worth of groceries, and a single ounce of gold could buy you a house.  And now in India the price of gold is skyrocketing upwards and outside the control of the paper gold markets which determine the global spot prices, and should be a warning to all on why owning physical metals is vital in a world where confidence in fiat money is crashing.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Forget nuclear weapons, the new Cold War is about gold and currencies

It is perhaps ironic that the American century was built upon having the most gold reserves in the world following the destruction of two World Wars, and is ending because they gave up reliance on a gold standard for trust in credit and fiat currencies.  And with the rise of Russia and China both economically and geo-politically, the new global financial powers have risen themselves on the back of the one true money.

Gold.

With all eyes on Russia’s unveiling their latest nuclear intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), which NATO has dubbed the “SATAN” missile, as tensions with the U.S. increase, Moscow’s most potent “weapon” may be something drastically different. 
The rapidly evolving geopolitical “weapon” brandished by Russia is an ever increasing stockpile of gold, as well as Russia’s native currency, the ruble. 
Recently, financial guru Jim Rickards, author of the book “Currency Wars,” wrote that “Russia is poised for a major comeback in its economy. Russian bonds and stocks and the Russian currency, the ruble, will all benefit.” Rickards believes a “strong turnaround” is coming within Russia, and that this comeback will benefit the ruble. 
Rickards, in his 2011 book “Currency Wars,” theorized that Russia and China could combine their gold reserves to form a global gold-backed currency to compete against the U.S. dollar. Currently, Russian reserves stand at roughly 1,500 tonnes, with Chinese reserves totaling over 1,800 tonnes (according to China — it’s likely more), which would amount to a combined total of roughly 3,300 tonnes of gold. 
The U.S. is about to lose overarching control of policymaking within the International Monetary Fund (IMF), thus the U.S. lockup on global gold is about to vanish, according to Business Insider. 
Imagine for a moment the distinctly real possibility that Russian-Chinese alliance could exercise indirect (or even direct) control over the IMF’s gold reserve of over 2,800 tonnes. Russian, Chinese and IMF gold combined would equal roughly 6,100 tonnes, and would allow for direct competition with the U.S. gold reserves, estimated at 8,100 tonnes. 
Russia and China have realized that the petrodollar is wielded by Washington as it’s weapon of choice when opposing a well-armed state, and clearly see the writing on the wall - thus working together to create a new global financial paradigm. - The Free Thought Project
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New Symbol of the Russian (Gold backed?) Ruble

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Kentucky Senator proposes bill for early 2017 which would remove sales tax from purchase of gold and silver

A state Senator from Kentucky has filed a new bill that would seek to remove sales tax on the purchase of gold and silver within the state.

Scheduled for early 2017, bill BR156 is being used as an initial stage for gold and silver to become currency again within the state of Kentucky, and to promote its purchase and use by its citizens.

A Kentucky bill prefiled for the 2017 session would remove sales taxes from the purchase of gold and silver, encouraging its use and taking the first step toward breaking the Federal Reserve’s monopoly on money. 
Sen. John Schickel (R-Union) prefiled BR156 on Oct. 11. The legislation would exempt bullion or currency purchases from state sales tax. This would include gold, silver, platinum, or palladium bars, ingots or commemorative medallions for which the value depends on its metal content, not its form. It would also exempt coins or currency made of gold silver or other metals paper currency used as legal tender. 
Under the proposed legislation, the exemption would remain in place for five years. 
Imagine if you asked a grocery clerk to break a $5 bill and he charged you a 35 cent tax. Silly, right? After all, you were only exchanging one form of money for another. But that’s essentially what Kentucky’s sales tax on gold and silver does. By removing the sales tax on the exchange of gold and silver, Kentucky would treat specie as money instead of a commodity. This represents a small step toward reestablishing gold and silver as legal tender and breaking down the Fed’s monopoly on money. - Activist Post

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Economists are looking at the potential of adding gold as the 6th currency to the IMF SDR

As the Chinese get ready to not only become the 5th member of the SDR basket of currencies in September, they are also being given the authority to issue M SDR bonds for the first time in decades.  But among these new changes to the IMF's international currency there is another element being discussed by certain economists, and it involves placing a 6th currency into the basket.

And that currency is gold.

“So there you goto include a commodity like gold into the SDR as a six currency component could help to make the SDR, more neutral to global cycles and more representative of the shift in economic power witnessed over the last two decades. 
The idea of adding gold to the SDR was also studied by professor Catherine Schenk in 2011. According to her study to, ‘re-introduce a role for gold in the international monetary system’ would,  ‘provide a counterweight to the impact of the depreciation/appreciation of the US$’, and could, ‘reduce vulnerability to the USD exchange rate’
Professor Robert Mundell, a special advisor to the Chinese government, is also in favor of bringing gold back to the monetary system: ‘There could be a kind of Bretton Woods type of gold standard where the price of gold was fixed for central banks and they could use gold as an asset to trade within central banks. The great advantage of that was that gold is nobody’s liability and it can’t be printed. So it has a strength and confidence that people trust. So if you had not just the U.S. but the U.S. and the EU (area) tied together to each other and to gold, gold might be the intermediary and then with the other important currencies like the yen and Chinese Yuan and British pound all tied together as a kind of new SDR, that could be one way the world could move forward on a better monetary system.’  -  CD Fund

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

This could be the greatest time in history to own or invest in gold

For the most part, gold has not been seen as a pure investment over time because in the annals of history, it had been primarily owned and controlled by governments who used the metal as money in most societies.  In fact, people easily had access to gold, or through their gold backed paper currencies, and used it for purchasing things rather than as a wealth protector, or as an investment.

But when the world went completely off the gold standard in 1971, the monetary properties of gold changed.  And 45 years later, one analyst believes that right now could be the greatest time in history to own and invest in gold because the financial system has never been in a worse place than it is today, and the world is about to enter what will be known as the era of perpetual bonds.

I’ll dare to suggest this is the greatest time in history to own gold, and not because it is going “vastly higher”. It’s because gold now has more institutional respect than it has in decades. 
“Perpetual Bond Thunder” is the new gold price driver in play, and it has the potential to influence major markets for many years into the future. 
Japan may lead the world with a sizable launch of perpetual bonds that feature no interest rate and no maturity date. 
Ben Bernanke is probably the biggest money printer in the history of America. He is now working hard to convince Japan to lead the world with a huge launch of perpetual bonds. 
It’s a scheme to monetize the huge Japanese government deficit. 
Perpetual bonds are known as “perps” amongst institutional money managers. If they are used in the manner suggested by Ben Bernanke and other top bank economists, they have the potential to allow Western governments to continue to operate huge fiscal deficits, with the only cost of running those deficits being the “minor inconvenience” of destroying the purchasing power of most fiat currencies. - Stewart Thompson of Graceland via Silver Doctors

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Gold has unlimited potential as central banks confused about which way to go with monetary policy

It is a given that gold is the counter-weight to fiat currencies as its price and value nearly always goes up when a nation's paper money goes down in value and purchasing power.  But what is now different, and what is suddenly being revealed is how gold is also a counter balance to central banks and monetary policy, and according to one Wall Street trader, the potential for higher gold prices is unlimited due the fact that the Fed, ECB, and BOJ are at an impasse on what to do to stave off financial calamity.

Starting in 2015, the Federal Reserve board of governors announced that there would be several rate hikes to the Fed funds rate over the next few years.  But each time they met to look over the data and seek to implement a hike, all they reported were excuses as to why they couldn't raise the cost of borrowing money.  And ever since June of this year when the Fed elected once again not to raise rates despite the fact that market sentiment was over 70% in the rate hike camp, the central bank has lost a great deal of credibility and this has been seen by the continuing rise of the gold price.

On CNBC's "Futures Now" this week, Tom Colvin said that gold will remain in a bull market that will only come to an end "when central banks take their hands out of the cookie jar." The Federal Reserve is unlikely to hike rates in the foreseeable future, despite a blockbuster June employment report on Friday. 
"The year-to-date rally in gold has been nothing short of spectacular, benefiting from what we have seen as a 'confused Fed' or a Fed lacking action," the senior vice president of global institutional sales at Ambrosino Brothers explained. 
Gold prices have rallied 28 percent in 2016, hitting a two year high earlier this week. Even as the yellow metal has pulled back from those highs in the last two sessions, Colvin expects these dips to arise as buying opportunities for investors. 
"The market can take good news and bad news," Colvin told CNBC. However, "a confused Fed, saying one thing but doing another over and over invites buyers of gold to jump into the pool with both feet and they have." - CNBC
Validation of this price action was also be seen on Friday, when the BLS announcement a monster rise in job creation that knocked down the gold price at the start of the trading day, only to see that price not only recover its initial losses, but close out the day in the green.

Live New York Gold Chart [Kitco Inc.]