The Israel Deception

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Showing posts with label japan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label japan. Show all posts

Monday, June 5, 2017

Bitcoin now affecting company stock prices as investors flock to businesses who claim a cryptocurrency presence

There is no way around ignoring the comparisons between today's cryptocurrency mania, and the Dot Com boom of 20 years ago.  In fact, with the number of cryptocurrencies expanding almost daily, and investors piling into them without even having the slightest idea of what these cryptos represent, Bitcoin mania is now even affecting equity markets and stock prices in countries such as Japan.

The speculative frenzy in bitcoin is spilling over into the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Remixpoint Co., Infoteria Corp. and Fisco Ltd., have all seen volatile swings in their share prices after announcing businesses related to digital currencies. 
Remixpoint has more than doubled since tying up with Peach Aviation Ltd. to let customers pay for tickets with bitcoin. Infoteria, up 58 percent in the past month, is testing ways to let shareholders vote by proxy using blockchain, bitcoin’s underlying technology. Fisco, a financial information services provider, began operating a bitcoin exchange last year and is up 26 percent since early May. 
All of these gains coincide with bitcoin’s rally, with the value of the virtual currency doubling against the U.S. dollar since early May. That has made the stocks of the these small-cap companies an attractive way for speculators to invest in cryptocurrency markets without buying them directly. That’s because investors can make bets via their brokerage accounts instead of taking risks with bitcoin exchanges, according to Naoki Murakami, a well-known day trader in Japan. 
“From about a month ago when all these virtual currencies started spiking like crazy, we began seeing the so-called ‘stocks of the virtual currency bubble,”’ said Murakami, a frequent speaker at investor conferences. “Not everyone is sure they can trust bitcoin exchanges. And some don’t have accounts there. That’s why they’re using the stock market to speculate.” - Bloomberg
Bottom of Form
With money being extremely cheap today for investing just as it was during the Dot Com boom of the middle to late 1990's, and the wealthy having little trust in the value and stability of their own sovereign currencies, then cryptocurrencies and the businesses which are tied to them will continue to see billions poured in to provide a means of wealth protection, and that ever elusive demand for something that provides a modicum of yield.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Japan to join China in weaning Asian economies off the dollar by facilitating direct yen currency swaps

Despite the fact that Japan is lacking a equivalent payments system to SWIFT like China now has, they will soon be joining the world's second largest economy in helping to wean the rest of Asia off the dollar by facilitating direct bi-lateral currency swaps.

Focusing primarily on the ASEAN economies, and jumping in as a competitor to the Yuan's growing dominance in the region, Japan is preparing to introduce a new program that will seek to establish currency swap agreements with most Asian countries that will include allowing them to use the Yen as a currency reserve, and even as a medium of exchange to buy or sell dollars.

Image result for japan currency swaps
Japan seeks to establish bilateral currency swap frameworks with members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations as a hedge against tight fund supplies in a financial crisis and also as a counter to the growing influence of the yuan. 
The Finance Ministry will propose the initiative soon. Japan's finance minister and central bank chief will meet with their ASEAN counterparts for the first time in four years, to coincide with the Asian Development Bank's annual meeting starting May 4 in Yokohama. 
Tokyo hopes the initiative will make Asian countries' financial systems and currencies more stable. Its first negotiations will involve Indonesia. 
The swap arrangements would let Japan supply foreign banks and other institutions with yen funds chiefly via the respective country's central bank. Financial institutions could unwind yen holdings under that framework, which may improve liquidity and stem the ripple effect during a financial crisis. 
ASEAN countries could even procure the dollar with the yen, then employ the greenback in propping up their own currencies. 
Japan's move comes as ASEAN members look to wean themselves off the dollar, a trend that could support wider adoption of the yen. In 2015, Vietnam set a zero interest rate on dollar deposits in a bid to encourage the use of other currencies. Indonesia mandates that settlements made inside its borders be in the rupiah. 
Japan also is taking aim at China, which is busy trying to internationalize the yuan. The International Monetary Fund says the yen accounts for 4.21% of foreign currency reserves held by countries, beating the yuan's 1.07%. However, Beijing has entered into bilateral currency swap agreements with Malaysia, Thailand and other Asian countries. Singapore and the Philippines decided to add the yuan to their foreign currency reserves last year. - Nikkei Asia

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.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Russia potentially changing stance on legality of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies

For the most part, Russia has been vehemently against Bitcoin and any other crypto-currencies, primarily because of their unregulated nature.  And even without the use of decentralized digital money within their borders, the Eurasian power constantly deals with other types of monetary problems that fall under the umbrella of 'money laundering' and other illicit activities.

But on April 11 this may slowly be changing as a Deputy Finance Minster for the government provided a ray of hope for the crypto-currency community as he announced that Bitcoin and other forms of digital money could actually become legalized as early as next year.

Cryptocurrencies may be recognized in Russia by 2018, according to Deputy Finance Minister Aleksey Moiseev. 
Moiseev says monitoring cryptocurrencies could be an instrumental tool against money laundering, and Bitcoin and other digital currencies could be recognized by next year as the central bank works with the government to develop rules against illegal transfers. 
The state needs to know who at every moment of time stands on both sides of the financial chain,” Moiseev said in an interview, as cited Bloomberg. “If there’s a transaction, the people who facilitate it should understand from whom they bought and to whom they were selling, just like with bank operations.” 
Last year the idea of a national cryptocurrency had been considered by the Ministry of Finance and the Central Bank, which would see the banning of all other virtual currencies in Russia. The idea had not been discussed by the Kremlin, however, according to Presidential Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov at the time. 
Russian officials had been opposing all virtual currencies, arguing their cross-border nature, transaction anonymity and lack of a supervisory body makes them the perfect vehicle for illegal transactions. - Russia Today
Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies have experienced a wild ride over the past year, with some nations such as India outright banning it completely as the government seeks to bring about their own version of a cashless society, while over in Japan the government has come to fully embrace its use by its citizens and businesses.

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

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Japan in process of setting framework to make use of Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies legal

In late March Japan's Accounting Standards Board began investigating and formulating the regulatory framework on how to integrate Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies into their monetary system.

Building upon legislation that legalized the use of crypto-currencies as far back as 2016, Japan is the largest economy to date to fully accept de-centralized digital currency, albeit with a demand for stringent regulatory oversight to ensure proper taxation, money laundering avoidance, and to protect against the potential of another Mt. Gox incident within Bitcoin exchanges.

Image result for bitcoin yen
New legislation authorizing digital currency as a legal payment method has come into force in Japan. 
The text of the law was released by Japan’s Financial Services Agency on March, 24.
Earlier this week, the Accounting Standards Board of Japan said that it would begin work on the creation of a framework to help understand how digital currency would be dealt with in the accounting sector. The process is expected to take six months, according to Nikkei.  
Big business is especially concerned; since the country has failed to provide guidelines regarding the accounting process when dealing with cryptocurrencies. 
“There is a risk that companies that hold virtual currency could turn out to have distorted valuations or that huge losses surface suddenly,” Chikako Suzuki, partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers Aarata, told Nikkei Asian Review.
Around $1.7 billion of cryptocurrency, including bitcoin, Ripple, Litecoin and others, was in circulation across Japan two years ago. The 2020 projection is set to be at $9 billion, according to a Fuji Chimera Research Institute study. 
The set of measures, that now has come into force, was drafted as far back as 2015 and passed in 2016 after a year of negotiations. Uncertainty over the legal status of virtual currency was stirred after a multi-million dollar embezzlement scandal and the collapse of the Tokyo-based Mt.Gox Bitcoin exchange. - Russia Today

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

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Russian bank follows Japan's lead in bypassing the dollar through connecting to China's CIPS system for interbank settlement

Last month, several Japanese banks took the unprecedented step in bypassing SWIFT and the dollar by connecting directly to China's CIPS platform for interbank settlement.  Now on March 9, Russia is following suit as one of their largest banks announced today that they are officially connecting to CIPS to conduct their own interback settlement with China that will no longer require intervention with the global reserve currency.

Image result for china and russia against the us
Russia's VTB Bank has been successfully connected to Chinese-based Cross-Border Inter-Bank Payments System (CIPS), the bank said on Wednesday. 
"VTB has been linked up to the system via correspondent banks and has successfully completed test operations in late 2015. We are monitoring the development of the introduction of the next phase of the CIPS, which is supposed to increase the operational efficiency of transactions," VTB's press office said in a statement. - Sputnik News
China officially opened their CIPS messaging platform last October as a way to both expand internationalization of the RMB, and to allow for much easier processing between nations in their bi-lateral trade agenda.  And over time the cost savings for both sides of the trade equation will be significant since trade partners will no longer be required to pay currency swaps to SWIFT in their having to buy dollars to act as a medium of exchange.

As more and more nations find direct bi-lateral trade a better and more equitable way of conducting commerce between economies, the less need there will be for countries to have to buy dollars to function in antiquated trade models.  And at the leading edge of this is China, who through coalitions such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and Silk Road projects are steadily expanding the idea of direct trade, and in the natural currencies held by each respective partner.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Bitcoin goes mainstream as Japan legalizes the crypto-currency and designates it as legal tender

As major world currencies such as the Yen, Yuan, and Euro struggle to remain viable in an eroding global monetary system, some governments are slowly coming to accept the advent of alternative mediums of exchange that their citizens can use to protect their purchasing power.

Since 2009, dozens of central banks have embarked on a currency war following the 2008 global financial crisis in order to protect their economies and especially their exports.  And ironically it was this same year that Bitcoin came onto the scene as the world's first crypto-currency.

And over the past eight years governments have struggled with how to deal with a form of currency that they could not control, tax, or regulate, and Bitcoin inevitably followed the path laid out by Mahatma Gandhi when he used a non-violent method of rebellion to eventually secure India's freedom from Britain.
"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."
And on Feb. 9 we may have just seen the first real victory for Bitcoin acceptance in the mainstream as the Japanese government has officially decreed Bitcoin to now be considered as legal tender, and welcomed it for use by individuals and businesses.
Embracing cryptocurrency, Japan has a new law that will make bitcoins usable as legal tender. Companies hoping to deal in the new currency, however, must submit to a long list of regulations to ensure that the ‘coins’ are not being used for criminal activity. 
Among the regulations, a company is required to have at least $100,000 in reserve currency, report their activities to the government regularly, and undergo routine external audits by the Japanese National Tax Agency. 
Japanese companies wishing to use bitcoins will be expected to pay the equivalent of some $300,000 to adopt bitcoin, and there is no guarantee that they will receive a license, even if they abide by government edicts. The steep price tag will likely discourage smaller Japanese companies from adopting the cryptocurrency. 
The measures have been put in place, according to reports, to protect the rights of consumers, as bitcoins have been involved in several notorious scams. The most famous of these was the Mt. Gox scandal, in which a bitcoin exchange company was found to be artificially inflating their holdings. At its 2013 peak, Mt. Gox handled about 70 percent of bitcoin transactions in Japan, but the scandal shuttered them. - Sputnik News
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There are of course many upsides and downsides to this new initiative by Japan embracing Bitcoin.  First, centralized regulation by a government is the antithesis of what the original creators of Bitcoin desired when they created the crypto-currency almost a decade ago, and it threatens to impart a growing loss of confidence in the digital currency as people begin to see Bitcoin simply as another fiat medium of exchange subject to the whims of government.  However, acceptance by that same government could be the catalyst necessary for reaching a point of critical mass, where retailers will rush into accepting the currency as it explodes in recognition locally, and elsewhere around the world.

Additionally, and like what we have seen recently over in China, the legalizing of Bitcoin as a viable form of currency could see a massive rush by the Japanese people into exchanging their Yen or Dollars for Bitcoin, causing the price to skyrocket even higher than it is today, while also removing supply out from the general marketplace.  Because according to the original programmers, only 21 million Bitcoin will ever be created (mined), and the Japanese population could easily co-opt the entire supply if just 20% purchased just one Bitcoin apiece.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Long time U.S. vassal state Japan to bypass dollar and SWIFT to transact using China's CIPS system in inter-bank settlement

Ever since China began to duplicate Western financial institutions starting in 2013, more and more nations have begun matriculating towards the East, and away from dollar hegemony.  And one of the most important of these new infrastructures is the Chinese CIPS platforms which functions for the RMB the same way SWIFT does for the dollar.

Yet unlike the way SWIFT charges for swaps when nations have to use the dollar as a middleman since it still reigns as the world's singular reserve currency, CIPS allows for much lower transaction fees and the convenience of bypassing the U.S. currency through direct bi-lateral currency settlement.

Hiroshima Bank and 13 other Japanese regional banks will connect to an interbank payment network that enables direct yuan wiring to mainland China -- a move that will lower transaction fees and boost convenience for customers. 
Joining the China International Payments System will reduce fees and processing days. Juroku Bank and Joyo Bank are also among the Japanese banks taking advantage of the system introduced by the People's Bank of China. They will be connected one by one after the end of the Chinese New Year holidays via the Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ, which connected to the system last year. 
Previously, payments to mainland China had to be processed by clearing banks such as those in Hong Kong. CIPS can cut costs by several dollars (10 yuan equals $1.45) per transaction. Payments can be completed on the same day if certain conditions are met. - Asia.Nikkei

As the world continues to reject the dollar and the old financial model of a singular reserve currency, more countries are seeing the benefits of transacting in a bi-lateral environment.  And once enough of these nations decides to follow this new economic model being laid out from Beijing, and create the critical mass needed to bypass the dollar completely, then the reserve currency will simply fade away via de facto consent, and force change onto the Western institutions that have run the global financial system for decades.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Negative interest rate blowback: businesses in Switzerland having to take out insurance on their money already stored in banks

When central banks implement monetary policies never tried before, there are always ramifications that take place that no one could have forecast.  For example, in both Germany and Japan there has been an incredible run on safes because individuals are flocking en masse to get money out of the banking system and store it within their domiciles to avoid negative interest rate (NIRP) fees or bail-ins.

But in Switzerland the consequences of NIRP have sparked a different reaction as businesses holding large amounts of deposits in their banks are taking out insurance on their money that they currently keep in a bank.

Why?  To mitigate the losses the banks will take from them due to negative rate fees.

Only unlike Japan and Germany, the Swiss are much more subtle about their cash hoarding than telling the neighborhood they have a stash of cash in their home by publicly buying a safe; instead, as Bloomberg reportsmore and more companies are taking out insurance policies to protect their cash hoards from theft or damage
"Because of the low interest rate level, we note increasing demand for insurance solutions for the storage of cash," said Philipp Surholt at Zurich Insurance Group AG, among underwriters reporting a surge in such requests. "We’re seeing demand for coverage for sums ranging from 100 million to 500 million francs.
Where the Swiss also differ from many other nations is that numerous local banks have already passed on negative rates to their wealthiest customers. The SNB imposed NIRP in early 2015, charging banks for excess deposits. Many lenders including UBS Group AG and Credit Suisse Group AG have passed on at least some of the burden, they don’t disclose how much, to cash-rich clients like asset managers and big companies. 
Meanwhile, a fascinating arbitrage has emerged between NIRP and insurance costs: Helvetia Holding said it charges about 1,000 francs ($1,020) a year to insure 1 million francs, a fraction of the 7,500 francs a company would pay to park the same amount in a bank for a year, assuming the lender passes on the full charge. While that amount doesn’t include the cost of logistics such as transport or security features like reinforced walls, guards and alarm systems, those may not be an issue for the wealthiest clients who already own their own safes and have their own means of transportation of the physical cash. - Zerohedge
Perhaps instead of paying out extra money each year to insure your money from confiscation, loss of purchasing power, and other consequences of NIRP, businesses and individuals should instead store their excess reserves in physical gold, which is much more easily stored in a safe, and is a silent rebellion to the policies of central banks who no longer have any idea what they are doing.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

As the world rushes to hoard cash, and gold supplies dwindle, what might a frenzy on gold buying look like?

Two interesting events are taking place right now in different parts of the world that threaten to create a frenzy not unlike the bank runs we saw in the 1930's and again following the bursting of the Housing Bubble in 2007.

Trust in banks have seriously eroded in places like Japan and Germany to the point where average people are making a run on home safes, and moving their cash out of financial institutions.  The root cause of course is the advent of negative interest rates and the growing fear that insolvent institutions will soon be forced to conduct bail-ins to stave off bankruptcy.

But it is not just a run on cash that is occurring in different pockets of the market.  Last week demands for delivery of physical gold were met with severe resistance, and this is a signal that most paper gold ETF's are not actually backstopped with physical gold, and which could soon bring about a run that would skyrocket the price to well over $5000 according to well respected metals analyst David Morgan.


Economist David Morgan of The Morgan Report is one of the world’s best known silver investors. In the following interview with Future Money Trends Morgan discusses his personal experiences during the last major run-up in gold, when it hit a price of $850 in early 1980. As Morgan describes it, there was significant panic buying during that time period, and should central banks and governments continue on their current course, we’ll see a similar endgame play out this time around: 
"What’s good for gold is the end of empire… And we’ve got governments that are failing… When these bond markets blow up further, that’s when you’re going to see a run to gold than we’ve already seen… 
Wait until the physical market freezes up, which could happen. I am not saying it would happen, but it could. With the worldwide demand and a failing currency across the world, where do you think people are going to go? They’re going to go to precious metals which have been trusted for thousands of years. 
If that were to occur, and I think it could happen… could you imagine the amount of money sitting on the sidelines in a panic mode that would go into the mining shares? It’s incredible. 
I saw it once… I saw what happened with gold and silver when it was a panic buy… My commodities broker was a woman. She worked for Dean Witter… She was very savvy… She would leave her office at lunchtime and go and buy gold at the local coin dealer… then after she closed her office she would stand outside her front door and sell gold coins to people who were lined up… believe it or not. 
That’s the kind of frenzy you get at the top of the gold market." - SHTFPlan

Friday, July 29, 2016

Gold rises and investors lose complete faith in central bankers following the Fed and BoJ's failed guidance

Gold prices have recovered from recent pullbacks following this week's less than insightful messages from both the Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan.  In fact, faith in the central banks has dropped to a near record low, and investors are becoming extremely wary that the monetary controllers will be unable to do the right things for interest rates and increased stimulus as the economy moves closer towards another crisis.

On Wednesday the Federal Reserve gave a lukewarm message and chose not to raise rates despite high job numbers from the May report.  And last night, the markets completely rejected Kuroda's promises of new stimulus, sending gold higher, and the Yen back towards 102 to the dollar.

Individual investors like Kudo drove a 60 percent jump in sales of the precious metal in June from May at Tanaka Holdings Co., the operator of Japan’s largest bullion retailer, as the yen’s rebound against the dollar made it more affordable. While Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling party scored a convincing victory in July 10 upper house elections, confidence in his economic policies is flagging. A July 2-3 Asahi newspaper poll showed 55 percent of those surveyed support a new direction versus 28 percent for maintaining course. 
Strong Yen 
The yen’s 17 percent gain this year is a reflection of Japanese investors fleeing from overseas markets due to pessimism about global growth rather than confidence in their own economy. Gold sales more than tripled at Tanaka’s shops on June 24, when the Japanese currency jumped to an almost three-year high against the dollar after the U.K. decided to exit the European Union. Japan’s Topix stock gauge dropped the most in five years the day after the Brexit referendum, while 10-year sovereign bond yields tumbled further below zero. - Bloomberg

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

Friday, July 15, 2016

Japan joins China in opening a physical gold exchange

The Tokyo Commodities Exchange (TOCOM) is joining with the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) to become the second major physical gold market in Asia.  Beginning on July 25, the TOCOM will begin deliveries for spot contracts, and is the only gold exchange accepted for futures contracts in Japan.

Since Japanese bonds fell into negative yields, investors and consumers have been buying physical gold at incredible rates.  And now that their market will have an official gold exchange like the one that opened in Shanghai last year, the precious metal will become even more liquid and draw more customers into gold.

The Tokyo Commodity Exchange Inc. (TOCOM) has announced today that July 25th will be the start date of new Gold Physical Transaction, pending regulatory approval. Gold is the most actively traded commodity at the Exchange with both futures and options contracts listed. 
Simultaneously, TOCOM will introduce a delivery at settlement option for the Gold Rolling Spot contract. Originally a cash-settled contract, the change is expected to better serve investor needs. 
Financial markets fell in reaction to the Brexit vote and the world economy is turning increasingly uncertain. Hence, Gold is in greater demand as a safe asset that removes credit risk. It is also seen as an effective inflation hedge and superior for long-term asset protection. Additionally, gold provides portfolio diversification, since price movement tends to uncorrelated with equity and bond prices. 
With the launch of this Gold Physical, TOCOM is providing a single platform where investors can conduct spot trading or hedge in gold with transparent pricing. TOCOM is the only regulated exchange that operates a gold market in Japan, and continues to improve investor convenience. - Leaprate

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Like Alibaba's domination over Amazon, Line's social media platform could soon dominate Facebook

There was an interesting statement made back in the 19th century during the industrial revolution that went, I would rather sell 100 shirts at $1 apiece to the Chinese than 10 shirts at $10 apiece.  This is because the potential for profit using the price elasticity of demand model, where by lowering the price you gain much more consumers, is a powerful tool when dealing with the massive populations residing in Asia.


And to date we have seen how this model works in the 21st century, as the e-commerce business known as Alibaba has emerged not only as one of the top 5 companies in the world, but it is also bigger than both Amazon and Ebay combined.

On July 14, the newest Asian powerhouse went public with their own IPO, and already it has the potential to soon dominate Western social media platforms like Facebook.  This is because the Japanese social media company called Line is based on appealing to customer demands and desires, and they have a population potential of several billion users to service.

It took Facebook five years to reach 200 million active users, but only three years for Line to achieve that same number.  And Facebook would have to wait another three years before launching itself as a public IPO, and at a value several dollars less than Line did today at $42 per share.
Line users per quarter

The bottom line is that so far in the second decade of the 21st century, the potential for growth is far greater in Asia than it is in the West, and especially within the United States economy.  And perhaps this is also why China now has the world's largest bank, and in reality the world's largest financial system, and where the future of economic growth no longer resides in companies coming out of the West.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

As Japan prepares to dump helicopter money, Japanese consumers rush to buy gold to protect their wealth

Over the weekend, former Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke took a trip to Japan to speak with Prime Minister Shnizo Abe and central bank head Haruhiko Kuroda about the next phase of monetary policy which appears to entail the printing and giving of money directly to the Japanese people.

Known in economics as 'helicopter money' after Ben Bernanke's speech where he promised to do anything possible to keep the economy going, the Bank of Japan has reached the point where they have little to lose than to expand their money supply to infinite levels and give people direct cash to try to stimulate a 30 year recession.


When we first heard this past Thursday that private blogger and Citadel employee Ben Bernanke was going to "secretly" meet with both the BOJ's Haruhiko Kuroda and Japan PM Abe, we warned readers that "something big was coming." 
As noted late last week, "Bernanke will be in Japan next week. It has been arranged for him to meet officials including Abe and Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda, according to a government official speaking on condition of anonymity. Bernanke is expected to discuss Brexit and the BOJ's negative interest rate policy with Abe and Kuroda, the official said." Reuters also added that "some market players speculate Kuroda might decide, in a surprise, to provide "helicopter money." 
We concluded as follows: 
So is it time? Is Bernanke about to unleash the next, and final, monetary policy evolutionary step, one which launches "helicopter money" in Japan, and if successful, brings it across the Pacific to the US? 
We don't know, but if anyone is still holding on to USDJPY shorts, now may be a good time to quietly close them out because if Reuters is right, and a "helicopter money" is about to be served for the first time in modern history, things are about to get very volatile, very fast. - Zerohedge
In response to this new insane monetary policy and the fact that saving in Japan is impossible under negative interest rates, the Japanese people are buying gold in droves, and realizing that the precious metal is the only way they will protect their wealth and save what little they have left before it becomes devalued into oblivion.
While in past decades, the natural instinct of Japanese savers when faced with financial uncertainty has been to rush into the "safety" of cash (after all why allocate funds to government bonds that yield almost, or less, than nothing) as we recently showed in Safes Sell Out In Japan and Demand For Big Bills Soars As Japan Stuffs Safes With 10,000-Yen Notes, now something has changed. That something is increasing loss of faith in Japan's currency. 
Take the case of Tetsushi Kudo, a 50-year-old office worker, who as Bloomberg writes, bought a one-ounce gold coin this month for the first time. With stocks slumping and zero percent interest on savings, he says it won’t be the last. 
"I want to buy gold every year as a birthday present for my daughter,” Kudo said at a store in Tokyo’s posh Ginza district where he made the 162,000 yen ($1,600) purchase. “She will thank me for the gift when she grows up because gold will have value wherever she goes.” 
Individual investors like Kudo drove a 60% jump in sales of the precious metal in June from May at Tanaka Holdings Co., the operator of Japan’s largest bullion retailer, as the yen’s rebound against the dollar made it more affordable. Why the surge into gold? Because far behind the glitzy facade of Abenomics, which is really just the BOJ intervening daily in the USDJPY via trust banks, and manipulating the Nikkei to give the impression that all is well, the people have checked out.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Global bonds at negative yield reach $13 trillion as the Dutch join in with the rest of the EU

We may have to rename the global bond market to ‘Fast and Furious -1.0’ because that is exactly what is happening to the expanding amount of sovereign bonds in both Europe and Japan.  Last week, bonds with a negative yield were estimated to be about $11.5 trillion, and just one week later, that amount has grown by 11.5% to now be around $13 trillion.
And the newest member to join the negative yield club are the Dutch, who’s Netherlands sovereign bonds for the first time fell to negative yields.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Japan investors fleeing from negative rate bonds and buying/storing gold in Switzerland out of fear of government confiscation

The Japanese people have gone through a great deal over the past 30 years, and trust in their government may have finally reached the low point.  That is because after years of zero and now negative interest rates, the transference of their retirement accounts to the U.S. in exchange for Treasury debt, and a money printing scheme that has completely destroyed their economy, those with money left are breaking away from the system and buying and offshoring physical gold in vast quantities.

There are three primary reasons why the Japanese populace and investors are fleeing out of Yen based assets and into physical gold.  First, because of asset deflation and negative interest rates the Japanese feel there is no investment left besides gold that will protect or grow their wealth within their economy.  Secondly, following a recent visit from former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to Japan, the people recognize that the only remaining option for the central bank is to expand the money supply to the point where all assets will become bubble inflated, and wealth will be evaporated from an insolvent currency.  And finally, the real threat of asset confiscation, particularly for gold, is now weighing on the minds of the Japanese and why they are choosing to store their gold offshore and in Swiss vault accounts.

Peter Boockvar – “Buy As Much Gold As You Can Now”
As Bloomberg reports, in the face of a clear lack of trust in Japanese leadership, local investors are buying gold to store in Switzerland. The reason: they are increasingly worried about confiscation which is why they are storing it half way around the globe.  The number of buyers jumped 62% in the first six months from the second half of 2015, Atsuko Sato Whitehouse, head of Japanese markets at the London-based BullionVault investment service, said this week.  
The clear action of gold buying comes only months after we reported on the increased demand for safes in Japan. This is what we said back in February: “Look no further than Japan’s hardware stores for a worrying new sign that consumers are hoarding cash--the opposite of what the Bank of Japan had hoped when it recently introduced negative interest rates,” WSJ wrote this morning. “Signs are emerging of higher demand for safes—a place where the interest rate on cash is always zero, no matter what the central bank does.” 
However, something has changed, and it is almost as if Japan is expected the ghost of FDR to arrive soon and confiscate their gold. 
“Many of our Japanese customers think it’s too risky to hold gold bars at home and they want to keep them in Switzerland because they are anxious about the future of Japan,” Whitehouse said in an interview. The country’s growth has stagnated for a decade, defying fiscal and monetary stimulus which has driven up public debt to more than double the value of annual economic output.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Japan jumps on the crypto-currency bandwagon as their largest bank tests digital money

Statistician and financial analyst Dr. Jim Willie has been saying for years that the future of sovereign currencies would be one where there are two separate forms of money… an international trade currency which is backed by gold, and a domestic currency that is both devalued and dedicated for internal use.
The methodology on how this would take place is as yet to be determined, but on June 15 the largest bank in Japan may be writing the blueprint of such a two-tier currency system as they are now experimenting with a crypto-currency they hope would compare one to one with the Yen.