world news; increasing paper/plastic money destroys the economy

Mosul battle (8)

12-2-16     “In previous operations, either in Tikrit, Ramadi or Falluja, there were no civilians … (we had) freedom of action to use our weapons,” operations commander Lieutenant General Abdul Ameer Rasheed Yarallah said.

“The instructions from the commander-in-chief (Abadi) are for the civilians to stay in their homes,” he told Iraqi TV on Thursday night, adding that without that constraint CTS forces would have already recaptured the eastern half of the city….

Commanders hope that security forces still stationed a few miles south of Mosul will advance soon and open a new front inside the city, with the aim of stretching the militants’ defenses more thinly.

Hisham al-Hashemi, who advises the government on combating Islamist militancy, told Reuters there were probably 4,000 Islamic State fighters still in Mosul.

The jihadists remain well organized and divided into cells defending separate neighborhoods, he said.  But militants in the east had been cut off from the west by air strikes on bridges across the Tigris, boosting the army’s chance to make progress.

“It will be slow and cautious.  We’re betting that Daesh will have had enough, that their ammunition is being depleted and they cannot resupply because the river crossing is finished”.           http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-iraq-mosul-exclusive-idUSKBN13R1KJ

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

11-30-16USA-SHALE-OPEC.jpg

USA-SHALE-OPEC-B.jpg

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-opec-meeting-usa-shale-idUSKBN13P0C8

………………………………………………………………………………………….

12-2-16     The Shenzhen stock exchange is the world’s eighth largest and worth US$3 trillion. Hong Kong’s (US$3.25 trillion) is the sixth largest.  The new connect is the second stock-trading link between mainland China and Hong Kong and goes further than the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect, which launched two years ago: this time China has decided to unlock access to tech stocks under the Small or Mid Cap Innovation Index that have a market cap of 6 billion yuan or above. In all, 880 stocks listed in Shenzhen will become eligible for trading.

Simultaneously, 417 stocks listed in Hong Kong that were previously off limits to mainland investors – including small cap stocks with market cap of at least HK$5 billion – will suddenly be accessible to them.     http://www.atimes.com/article/stock-disconnect-hk-small-caps-outshine-china-tech-firms/

…………………………………………………………………………………………..

$100 billion/year illegal drugs, usa (2010)

A bar chart showing how frequent users account for the majority of expenditures.

Frequent users account for the vast majority of drug expenditures (2010 estimates)

From 2002 to 2010, our middle estimates for marijuana increased from roughly $30 billion to $40 billion.  These estimates, however, assumed that users continued to consume the same weight of marijuana per use day even though THC-levels were increasing.  If instead the amount of THC consumed stayed constant (meaning total weight consumed decreased), the 2010 spending figure would be closer to $25 billion.  http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB9770.html

 

……………………………………………………………………..

The Sinaloa cartel can buy a kilo of cocaine in the highlands of Colombia or Peru for around $2,000, then watch it accrue value as it makes its way to market.  In Mexico, that kilo fetches more than $10,000.  Jump the border to the United States, and it could sell wholesale for $30,000.  Break it down into grams to distribute retail, and that same kilo sells for upward of $100,000 — more than its weight in gold.  And that’s just cocaine. Alone among the Mexican cartels, Sinaloa is both diversified and vertically integrated, producing and exporting marijuana, heroin and methamphetamine as well.      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/17/magazine/how-a-mexican-drug-cartel-makes-its-billions.html

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

4-14-15     US prescription drugs (2014) spending:  $374 billion

US spending on prescription drugs soared last year, driven up primarily by costly breakthrough medicines, manufacturer price hikes and a surge from millions of people newly insured due to the Affordable Care Act.  Spending rose 13 percent, the biggest jump since 2001, to a total of $374 billion.

…………………………………………………………………………….

“The combined profits for the ten drug companies in the Fortune 500 ($35.9 billion) were more than the profits for all the other 490 businesses put together ($33.7 billion) [in 2002].  Over the past two decades the pharmaceutical industry has moved very far from its original high purpose of discovering and producing useful new drugs.  Now primarily a marketing machine to sell drugs of dubious benefit, this industry uses its wealth and power to co-opt every institution that might stand in its way, including the US Congress, the FDA, academic medical centers, and the medical profession itself.”   …Bayh-Dole Act gave a tremendous boost to the nascent biotechnology industry, as well as to big pharma. Small biotech companies, many of them founded by university researchers to exploit their discoveries, proliferated rapidly.  They now ring the major academic research institutions and often carry out the initial phases of drug development, hoping for lucrative deals with big drug companies that can market the new drugs.  Usually both academic researchers and their institutions own equity in the biotechnology companies they are involved with….

According to a report by the non-profit group Families USA, the former chairman and CEO of Bristol-Myers Squibb, Charles A. Heimbold Jr., made $74,890,918 in 2001, not counting his $76,095,611 worth of unexercised stock options. The chairman of Wyeth made $40,521,011, exclusive of his $40,629,459 in stock options.  And so on. [14]   http://www.wanttoknow.info/truthaboutdrugcompanies

………………………………………………………………………………..

June 2014      usa spends 50 times as much money buying foreign products as buying usa products   http://time.com/2901341/this-is-how-much-money-americans-are-spending-every-second/

…………………………………………………………………………….

USA spending/yr:  Auto parts and services–$164 billion in 2009; electronics–$99.5 billion; furnishings–$88.8 billion; apparel–$177 billion; health care–18% of Americans’ budgets (the highest percentage of all the nations on our list).     http://www.forbes.com/2010/12/06/how-the-world-spends-its-money-entrepreneurs-finance-ask-an-expert-10.html

………………………………………………………………………….

A new report by Common Sense Media, a San Francisco-based non-profit that tracks children and their technology use, finds that teens age 13 to 18 spend almost nine hours a day – that’s longer than they usually sleep – on “entertainment media,” which includes things like checking out social media, music, gaming or online videos.  http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/11/03/teens-spend-more-time-media-each-day-than-sleeping-survey-finds/75088256/

………………………………………………………………………….

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in 2009 said the international trade in counterfeit and pirated goods increased to more than U.S. $250 billion, almost 2% of world trade, up from US$200 billion in 2007….$30 billion illicit industry, according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime–cigarettes are the world’s most smuggled legal product….Interpol says human trafficking and illicit migration is a $28 billion enterprise….Cargo theft is as much as a $30 billion problem annually, according to the FBI…..Illicit drugs worldwide:  (estimate) US$ 300 billion according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.    http://www.forbes.com/2010/06/04/biggest-illegal-businesses-business-crime.html

………………………………………………………………………………..

12-3-16     Mr. Modi was wrong when he said that the rich now need sleeping pills, while the poor sleep peacefully.  In past seizures of illegal wealth, only between 3.75% and 7.3% was found to be kept in cash.  The sleepless are those who need cash to get by; the truly rich are laughing all the way to their flats in London.  The punitive taxes levied on black money that is deposited will feel like flea-bites.  As for the counterfeiters, most estimates of the value of fake rupees are in the tens of millions of dollars, out of $250bn in circulation.           http://www.economist.com/news/leaders/21711040-narendra-modi-needs-take-measures-mitigate-damage-his-rupee-reform-has-done-indias

………………………………………………………………………………

U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) estimates that China’s 2015 defense budget exceed $180 billion, and the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) estimates the overall figure at $214 billion.     http://chinapower.csis.org/military-spending/

But an argument could be made that the entire Chinese economy (as run by the Communists) is a military/political weapon to tyrannize populations.

………………………………………………………………………………………..

total_spending_pie,__2015_enacted.png

https://www.nationalpriorities.org/budget-basics/federal-budget-101/spending/

…………………………………………………………………………..

9-20-16     From 2005 to 2015, the U.S. Federal Reserve sent roughly $700 billion in profits to the U.S. government, more than any other central bank. That included $117.2 billion in 2015, far higher than the $21.5 billion in 2005, three years before the financial crisis struck. The Fed declined to comment.

On one level, central banks make their money like any other investor or bank:  they lend at a higher rate than the one at which they borrow.     http://www.wsj.com/articles/central-bank-rescues-prove-profitable-1474380387

…………………………………………………………………….

6-29-15     The deep reason for the Eurozone sovereign crisis is that the euro is a foreign currency for member countries.  It also provides an example of how deeply politicized the ECB has become.  No other central bank in the world tells its government what reforms it should conduct, nor how sharp should fiscal consolidating be.   http://voxeu.org/article/grexit-staggering-cost-central-bank-dependence

………………………………………………………………………………

10-29-14

Central banks are printing rules almost as fast as they’re printing money. The consequences of these fast-multiplying directives–complicated, long-winded and sometimes self-contradictory–is one topic at hand.  Manipulated interest rates is a second.  Distortion and mispricing of stocks, bonds and currencies is a third.  Skipping to the conclusion of this essay, Grant’s is worried.

“One would not think at first sight that government had much to do with the trade of banking,” Walter Bagehot, the famed Victorian writer on finance, mused a century and a half ago.  As time rolls on and regulation gives way to regimentation, the question presents itself:   do bankers have much to do with the trade of banking anymore?  ….It’s the way of radical monetary gimmicks that one begets another.  The more they’re tried, the less they succeed; the less they succeed, the more they’re tried.  There is no “exit.”          https://blogs.cfainstitute.org/investor/2014/10/29/complexity-the-hidden-cost-of-central-bank-actions/

…………………………………………………………………………………..

11-26-13     Inflation–increasing the supply of paper money– is the cause of malinvestment and the business cycle, and literally destroys the capital needed for economic growth and stability.  The formation of capital through savings is discouraged or eliminated by a paper money system.  Instead of paper money producing economic growth, it accomplished the opposite.   https://dailyreckoning.com/the-mythical-merits-of-paper-money/

IMG_4226.JPGShasta

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s