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Financial news I consider important, with my opinion, which is worth as much as you paid for it.
Please click HERE to read a synopsis of my view of the financial situation.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Robotics, Demographics, and the changing landscape of employee skills

The bar will continue to be raised for all workers, as they will need to compete with higher skillset to add value.  I ran across a video that dives deeper into yet once again, how the baby boomer demographics will influence the rise of the robotics.  See my previous post on March of the Robots, Deflation for Decades on my view of the changing landscape.  The video below isn't from an economic perspective, but does a great job of capturing the technological landscape ahead.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Technology, driving the next economic reset

Most people don't know this, but economic structures like the one we live in resets every 100 years or so.  Resets can come in many different forms, the most extreme is currency is devalued or exchanged for a new system.  This is needed deal with the overhang of past people's financial obligations and the reality that the people who acted may no longer be living.  For example, the debt incurred during the Great Depression that was never fully paid off, what does debt from the 30's and 40's have to do with current 20 year olds feeling economic tension?

An economic reset allows the current generation to set a new set of rules, and move forward until that system no longer meets the needs of society.

In our current case, I have written how technology is applying pressures on a system constructed in 1913.  Technology further applies pressure by allowing much more to be accomplished with much less, raising the bar significantly of workers who can benefit from employment driven by innovation.

I have also written how we will see deflation for decades with an ever rising unemployment.   The bright spot I have written about is innovation in a future new currency system allowing more to participate, and an world revolution in manufacturing.

The current system places quite a bit of emphasis on real estate.  Partly because since 2001 the world banks have used real estate to grow paper wealth to drive more business activity and employment.  This drive I believe is reaching a peak in the next few years world wide.   What I believe will limit real estate valuation is yet again technology.  What if, a house could be built at higher quality, costing 1/10th the price of current house building?   What would happen to older house prices if a new houses could be built undercutting the old?

That is exactly what is in store for our future.  The same manufacturing revolution I noted above will drive to new technologies, yielding an economic bonanza for developing countries, but potentially a death blow to the west economic structure.

The ability to automate construction is getting a new twist with massive 3d house printing technology in it's infancy.  Such technology is not a threat in the next 3 years, but in 10? You an Guarantee it will come into play.

So we continue the race of the old system, rebirth into the new, whenever that comes.  For now, continue to sit back and watch the Great Degeneration as it unfolds.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Gold Miner bloodbath

The GDX ETF has really hit the skids.  The overall market is just slightly below all time highs, and gold miners are at lows not seen since the 2008 crash!

If that isn't a buy low, sell high setup, I don't know what is.

If you managed to stay out of this until now, this is really decent to START buying.
put bids in at 5% here, 5% at 21, 5% at 16.
Granted, it is possible that the miner go lower than the 2008 crash, worst crash since the great depression.
OR we are nearing a multi-year low.

I  put bids in for January 2015 calls strike 35, at 5 contracts at 1.50.  Risk 750, reward 'unlimited' ;)

Good luck.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Gold Miners

My original plan was to stay out of mining sector until it was depressed.
I made the call too soon and went into miners before they rose (good) and then fell further than bought (bad).

If you like the idea of this sector, I highly recommend Mish's analysis of some buys. (click)
I picked up some NEM today.

I REALLY like the ABX chart (click)

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Government monitoring is not a surprise

Back in 2009, I called in post called "Increasing control by central authorities" a proposed law at that time giving the government legal permission to monitor user data.  I called out that this legalizes using technology to monitor it's citizens without warrant.

I posted similar concerns over the years since then, culminating in post of June 2012, Giving opinion, is it worth it?   In that post I call out how everything is subject to collection and analysis.  I call out how that this data will be used to profile you for the rest of your life, no matter how your own disposition changes.

Then in Feb 2013 in post "Future Tech - The Double Edged Sword" I point out how big data married with tech, such as Google glass, will bring unprecedented power to centralized authorities.  That at a mere glance you can be instantly profiled and singled out based upon criteria.

There are posts from other bloggers, like Karl Denninger on such technologies that can mass process data years ago for monitoring.

Sure, a person (Edward Snowden) says he has 'inside knowledge' that he is breaking the law to give to us.  This knowledge is frankly known before he broke the information if you are paying attention.  I believe that this event is political is spun to use against Obama (I am not a fan of Obama), rather than a real concern over US privacy.  If that was such a concern, the media would have highlighted when LAWS are proposed to invade privacy.  Instead they do not report important news, only when news is sensational and sells.

Even with this 'revelation', so? People will grow tired of it, and it will become the accepted fabric of society.
Until the 'revelation' that a Google glass product marries with face recognition and big data can instantly profile and single you out on questionable criteria.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Euro Enslavement of Europe by Germany

I have been delaying quite a rant about Germany.  Mostly I needed the time, and the fire in my belly to take the time to do this topic justice.

If you have been paying attention, Greece, Spain, Portugal, and other countries in the Euro are hurting bad.
On a collision course to the potential epic explosion of the Euro is France vs Germany.
To learn more about the state of these countries, click on the links above.

At the heart of all these problems is the Euro.
The Euro is NOT a pure fiat currency.  It is a currency that has strings attached, set by the dominant members of the Euro, with Germany at the heart of this debate.

Lets examine Greece as a case example.  We'll bypass how Greece could never have entered the Euro without bogus off-the-book tricks to make their balance sheets look good enabled by large financial companies.    The Euro (Germany) sets the rules that to be a member of the Euro you must have your finances in order.  Countries cannot run deficits of 250% of GDP like Japan does.  Such recklessness is at the expense of saving nations, like Germany.

Germany looks like the victim, a saving nation bailing out its neighbors, and enforcing tough love.  This tough love of course is causing Greece to experience about 60% youth unemployment27% for general population,  and 10% of all children at risk for insufficient food.  A tough person would look at this and say "hey, Greece dug this hole, let them dig themselves out for the next 50 years".  That in itself has issues for anyone born since 1980, hardly fair price to pay.

So the question is, why did Germany enter into such a disastrous marriage with countries with less than stellar financial histories?  It is simple, it benefited Germany.  How  you may ask?  It is a slight of hand that must be followed carefully.

Lets assume there was NEVER a Euro.  Every country would have independent autonomy on their currency and finances.  Greece could continue to (over) spend  on their economy without having to cut back on their finances.  You may say, that's illogical, they couldn't do that forever.  True, there may be consequences but the likely net result is a currency that continually loses value compared to saving nations, like Germany.

So in 1990, 1 Drakma could buy 1 German Mark.  By 2013, 5 Drakma buy 1 German Mark.
This of course, looks bad for Greece, their currency slides lower while Germany acts responsible.

So say you live in Greece and buy a BMW car for 30K in 1990.  Car runs great and in 2013 time to buy another car.  Now that same car will cost you 150K in 2013 in Drakmas'.

All things being relative, this will likely result in LESS German goods being purchased by Greeks.  Now expand that thinking to every country 'not as fiscally' responsible as Germany.

The net result is for Germany to keep its exports healthy, it would REQUIRE to cut it's standard of living to it's citizens to bring down that car to say, 70K from 150K.  Sure its not 30K, but something that may strike a balance of economics vs standard of living.

Now, which sounds better to you, have a customer base that sees your BMW as a 30K car in 2013, or 150K?  The consequence of course is what Greece is experiencing today.

The only victim in Germany and Greeks citizens who believed their politicians.
Now the real victims is the youth of all countries, as they have near zero prospects for work. What we are building now is a European revolution, as the young get older, disgruntled and angry.  Once we have a majority that are angry, this farce will end in a spectacular event.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Market Crash closer than expected...or is it?

The Japanese bond market is breaking, with Japanese interest rates accelerating higher.
The Japanese stock market has had some nice sell offs last week.

The European union cannot fix their issues, and Greece just predicted 2007 employment level will be attained in 2076.

The US stock market has hit a nice parabolic blow-off rise last week, reaching extreme levels never seen.

All of this adds up to a market crash is quite possible around the corner.  But never fear, this will be followed by even MORE extreme responses by the central banks to save the economy by easing money creation.  Overall this isn't a bad thing per say, it just we don't know how this ends.  I do believe that gold miners after the extreme sell of of GDX down to 26 is approaching a bottom.  MAYBE another 20% lower? maybe?  I can't see it breaking 19 a share like it did in 2008.  In any case, we are closer to a bottom than 2 months ago.

I will caution all readers.  If this plays out badly for the world governments, we could see that this next leg will be one that has rising interest rates at it's heals.  The US bond market has seen rates drop for 25 years straight!  30 year bonds are near 3%, so this is also near a all time bottom.   For who would lock in at 1% for 30 years?

What doesn't go down, usually goes up.  If rates start to go up, all hell will break loose on our debt based society.  If you own bonds, it will be very hard to get out without taking a substantial loss.

Good luck, we all need it.