Closing Thought–04Nov19

Back in the days, about 30 years ago, I was a stock trader and I made some cash and I also lost some cash…..but I wish I had a way of knowing some things in advance and I would have made a lots more cash……

Instead of gold futures I would have traded in another metal……Palladium…..

Gold may be the best known precious metal, and it’s currently selling for about $1,490 an ounce. But it’s now in the rearview mirror of a different, lesser-known precious metal: palladium. About a year ago, palladium was selling at about $900 an ounce, notes Bloomberg. Today? More than $1,800, a threshold it recently cracked for the first time, reports CNBC. As the Wall Street Journal explains, the soaring price can largely be chalked up to tighter emissions rules for gas-powered vehicles in China and Europe. Palladium is used mainly to build catalytic converters, which make exhaust systems burn cleaner. And what’s happening appears to be a straightforward case of supply not keeping up with demand.

In its primer on the metal, Bloomberg notes that palladium is not mined directly. Instead, it emerges as a byproduct in the mining of platinum and nickel, mostly in South Africa and Russia. For years, the auto industry has been talking about finding a cheaper alternative, but so far none has emerged. Don’t expect that to change: At this point, automakers seem more likely to put their R&D money into electrification—which would make palladium exhaust systems obsolete—than into a palladium alternative. In the meantime, investors are enjoying the run: Demand outpaced supply in 2018 for the sixth consecutive year, and the Journal notes that palladium is one of the best-performing market assets in 2019.

Where is that damn “way back machine” when you need it?

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Where Oh Where Has The Economy Gone?

If you get the Tweets from the GOP then you will be thumping your chest because Trump has made us mere mortal Americans richer with his lame ass economic policies.

The problem with that LIE is that reality pisses all over it.

Like the BS about how much us mere mortals would benefit from Trump tax cuts……well it is total crap….https://lobotero.com/2019/10/30/closing-thought-30oct19/

I recall when he was in the WH early in his rein he precdicted with his policies the American economy would grow 3. 4 5 % and possibly as much as 6%…..so far that was Bullshit as well….

The summer temps may have been record-setting hot, but the economy experienced some chills. Data out Wednesday via the Commerce Department shows GDP grew at a 1.9% rate from July through September, down from a growth rate of 2% in the second quarter. Why, what it means, and President Trump’s morning thoughts on the economy:

  • The Washington Post frames the slowdown as expected, as business investment was curtailed following the president’s decision to ratchet up the trade war with China at the start of August. Many expected much worse, reports the Hill, with some forecasts as low as a growth rate of 1.3%.
  • The Post notes the 3% drop in business investment in the third quarter is the largest since late 2015: “Still, the sustained pace suggests it is unlikely to dive into a recession anytime soon, unless there is a major shock or the trade war worsens significantly.”
  • Consumer spending makes up 70% of economic activity. It grew at a healthy 2.9% in the third quarter, down from 4.6% the quarter prior.
  • The AP points out Trump has set “3%-plus increases … as a benchmark to demonstrate that his policies are succeeding in lifting the economy above the modest 2.2% growth of the Obama years.” Growth for 2019 is expected to end up around 2.3%. NPR notes we’d need “an economic miracle” to end up at the 3.2% growth rate that appears in Trump’s 2019 budget.
  • Though the GDP report was better than expected, most investors doubt it will do anything to change the mind of the Federal Reserve, which is expected to announce a quarter-point rate cut at 2pm Wednesday, reports CNN. (Update: It did.)
  • About an hour prior to the report’s release, Trump tweeted, “The Greatest Economy in American History!” The Week contrasts that with a tweet Trump wrote in 2012 during Obama’s presidency: “Q1 GDP has just been revised down to 1.9% … The economy is in deep trouble.”
  • So is he right about the greatest part? The Post reports that if the annual pace of roughly 2.9% seen thus far is sustained for the remainder of his term, it would be the fastest term of growth since the Clinton years. But that still wouldn’t make it the greatest, as Clinton and Reagan both experienced growth in excess of 3% a year during their terms.

Yes Irene….the economy is NOT preforming well under the leadership of Trump…..

The ‘Trump economy’ isn’t living up to his promises

AS the election approaches….now is the time to start looking at all the promises that Trump made in 2016……if his leadership has been a sham then maybe it is time to remove this person and install a new liar  to lead the economy.

In a closing note…where have all the fiscal conservs gone?

The Federal deficit has reached $23 trillion……and NO ONE cares!

The federal government’s outstanding public debt has surpassed $23 trillion for the first time in history, according to data from the Treasury Department released on Friday.

Growing budget deficits have added to the nation’s debt at a speedy rate since President Trump took office. The debt has grown some 16 percent since Trump’s inauguration, when it stood at $19.9 trillion. It passed $22 trillion for the first time just 10 months ago.

https://thehill.com/policy/finance/468600-us-debt-surpasses-23-trillion-for-first-time

Where oh where did the deficit hawks go?

Gone to knee pads everyone.

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Sunday Medical News (FYI)

Did everyone “Fall Back” this Sunday?  (Time change)

As a retired old fart I am constantly worrying about my health as well as my wife’s…..one really bad problem and we could be ruined just like most of the American retired.

So yeah it is pretty damn important!

I read an article about the disparity of the American health care system…….

A research study on a commercial computer program used to allocate health care resources on predicted future health care costs provided a window on the ongoing pervasive impact of structural racism in our nation’s health care system.

Moreover, the research published in Science magazine reinforced how structural racism persists throughout society, including disparities in income, housing and other social and economic factors, and the impact that has on disparities in health.  

The study focuses on an algorithm used by health systems, insurers, and practitioners to predict which patients with complex medical needs should receive extra medical care. The ostensible goal is to slash costs by suggesting those patients receive “high risk management” at less expensive primary care levels.

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/10/29/what-algorithms-tell-us-about-structural-racism-health-care

By now just about everybody has heard of the Dems proposal known as Medicare For All…..lots of pros and just as many cons……but those that have the most to lose, the health industry, the drug industry and those that have prostituted themselves to these industries, are the loudest opponents…..

But what does the economics say about the proposal?

Medicare for All would give most U.S. workers “the biggest take-home pay raise in a generation,” two economists from the University of California, Berkeley said Friday, countering one of the main insurance industry talking points against single-payer.

In an op-ed for The Guardian, Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman directly challenged the claim that Medicare for All would “involve massive tax increases for the middle class,” an attack line centrist Democratic presidential candidates like former Vice President Joe Biden and South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg have recently deployed against the popular proposal.

“Supporters of Medicare for All are right,” said Saez and Zucman, leading experts on income and wealth inequality. “Funding universal health insurance through taxes would lead to a large tax cut for the vast majority of workers.”

The two economists argued that health insurance premiums are effectively taxes taken out of workers’ paychecks and paid to for-profit insurance companies instead of the government.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/10/25/two-leading-economists-say-medicare-all-would-give-workers-biggest-take-home-pay

Last bit for this Sunday…..an update on the medical procedure known as a “fecal transplant”….I have informed my readers of this medical treatment in the past……https://lobotero.com/2019/06/16/all-those-transplants/

The rain has stopped and cooler temps and now the satsuma crop is in we need to start on the tangerine crop…..

Now there is more on this health issue….

What the New York Times calls “a frank and public act of self-examination” has emerged from a Boston medical center following the death of a fecal transplant patient after receiving contaminated stool. In an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital document the events leading up to the death of the 73-year-old blood cancer patient, which was first reported by the FDA in June. He and another patient, a 69-year-old with liver disease, had been given stool last spring that hosted drug-resistant E. coli bacteria, both samples from the same donor. The liver patient became seriously ill after his fecal microbiota transplant (aka FMT), which aims to restore a patient’s microbiome, or gut organisms. That man recovered, but the cancer patient was put on a breathing machine a week after his last FMT; he died two days later from a blood infection.

One big misstep: Although the hospital had tightened screening for stool donations starting in January based on new FDA guidelines (FMT isn’t FDA approved), older samples were kept, untested, in a freezer. “It wasn’t obvious to a lot of smart people here. We didn’t think to go back in time,” Dr. Elizabeth Hohmann, the article’s lead author, says, adding to STAT that “the prevalence of these organisms in healthy individuals is so low.” Hohmann adds that “20/20 hindsight” also made them realize that antibiotics given to the two patients before their fecal transplants may have helped the E. coli bacteria flourish. The Times notes that while the Boston hospital uses fecal transplant material produced in-house, most treatments in the US use material from the OpenBiome nonprofit stool bank, which has been screening for antibiotic-resistant E. coli since 2016, with no reported cases of “serious adverse events” from FMTs.

In closing….Eeeeewwwwwwww!

The rain has stopped and cooler temps and now the satsuma crop is in we need to start on the tangerine crop…..

Image

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I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Thanx for the visits this past week…I appreciate those people that participate….have a great Sunday…..

Closing Thought–30Oct19

Tax Cuts!

Every time we have a cut in taxes we are told that they will pay for themselves and that all the benefits for the wealthy will trickle down to the rest of us peasants….both are lies that the people believe every time and every time we , the average person, gets the shaft.

That said what about the tax cuts of two years ago the Speaker Ryan helped pass and screw us people….

After two years, President Trump’s tax cuts are not on track to pay for themselves, the latest Treasury data released Friday suggest.

Total federal government revenues ended up lower in 2019 than was projected before the passage of the GOP tax overhaul in 2017.

Then, in 2017, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected that fiscal 2019 revenues, without the tax cuts, would be $3.69 trillion. Instead, revenues with the tax cuts were only $3.46 trillion.

To be certain, the difference, $225 billion, cannot be attributed solely to the tax cuts. Other economic factors have influenced economic growth over the past two years. For example, the tariffs put in place as part of Trump’s trade wars likely counteracted the stimulative effect of the tax cuts.

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/two-years-in-trump-tax-cuts-not-on-course-to-pay-for-themselves

THat was a con job…..but what about all the bravado that Trump thumps his chest about….like” this is the best economy in our history”

More con….more lies…..look at the stats for yourself…..

It’s true the economy has been doing well – but there have been periods when it was even stronger.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-45827430

The truth is that the economy is the best in decades but only if you are already wealthy and are getting wealthier…..the rest of us continue to struggle….day to day……

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

29 October In History

The year is 539 BC……Persian king Cyrus the Great conquers Babylon and frees the Hebrew slaves and allows them to return to their homeland……but that is not important for we hate Iran (Persia)…..

But what happened here in the good old U.S. of A.?

Does anyone know what happen 90 years ago today?  (Of course you don’t for it does not concern you)……

……..I will wait while the Google machine gets a work out…….

It was called “Black Tuesday”….does that help?

The great Stock Market Crash of 1929 and the beginning of what would be called the “Great Depression”….a time that changed much here in the US.

On October 29, 1929, Black Tuesday hit Wall Street as investors traded some 16 million shares on the New York Stock Exchange in a single day. Billions of dollars were lost, wiping out thousands of investors. In the aftermath of Black Tuesday, America and the rest of the industrialized world spiraled downward into the Great Depression (1929-39), the deepest and longest-lasting economic downturn in the history of the Western industrialized world up to that time.

https://www.history.com/topics/great-depression/1929-stock-market-crash

Let us look closely at what happened that caused this “crash”?

The stock market crash of 1929 – considered the worst economic event in world history – began on Thursday, October 24, 1929, with skittish investors trading a record 12.9 million shares. On October 28, dubbed “Black Monday,” the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged nearly 13 percent. The market fell another 12 percent the next day, “Black Tuesday.” While the crisis send shock waves across the financial world, there were numerous signs that a stock market crash was coming. What exactly caused the crash – and could it have been prevented?

https://www.history.com/news/what-caused-the-stock-market-crash-of-1929

Now we know what happened so the question now is could it happen again?

Few people are alive anymore who remember living through the stock market crash of 1929. But plenty of people still view that fateful plunge as a worst-case scenario for what might befall investors.

The roughly 20% decline for large stocks in October 1929 actually wasn’t the market’s worst month ever, but the drop incited nearly three years of relentless selling and helped to usher in the Great Depression. Could a 1929-style market setback happen again?

Yes, it could.

https://www.azcentral.com/story/money/business/economy/2019/10/13/stock-market-crash-october-1929-great-depression-economic-downturn/3910471002/

More thoughts on the possibility of the Crash happening again…..https://www.washingtonpolicy.org/publications/detail/the-crash-of-1929-could-it-happen-again

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

Class Dismissed!

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Closing Thought–18Oct19

How do we fight economic injustice?

Appears AOC, one of Trump’s nemeses on the Hill, has a plan….a plan that she has put into motion as a bill/law…..

Representative Ocasio-Cortez believes that we must build a just society to protect our communities and uplift our neighbors. A Just Society legislation aims to combat one of the greatest threats to our country, our democracy, and our freedom: economic inequality

A Just Society aims to ensure that we are on a path towards shared prosperity for all. A just society provides a living wage, safe working conditions, and healthcare. A just society acknowledges the value of immigrants to our communities. A just society guarantees safe, comfortable, and affordable housing. By strengthening our social and economic foundations, we are preparing ourselves to embark on the journey to save our planet by rebuilding our economy and cultivate a just society. To learn more, follow the links below.

https://ocasio-cortez.house.gov/ajs

Check out her plan and then tell me your thoughts.  Please keep the lies of socialism to a minimum…..if you cannot be constructive and unbiased……. then move along.

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Wrote, You Know

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Mr. Trump, What About That Economy?

2020 will be a mandate on how the economy is doing and how the American people are doing economically.

You would think that if the economy is as good as Trump use to brag about then he would be beating his chest about how damn good it is and that his policies were the fire that started this good burn.

In case you are new and have not been keeping up I have a little reminder of how this economy is really doing…..not the bluster of bullsh*t from some deluded toad and his lackeys….but real facts.

Let me help…….https://lobotero.com/2019/08/15/the-economy-stupid/

What bout all those beautiful jobs and factory re-openings and good times had by all?

It seems the the manufacturing sector is having a bit of a slide……

A gauge of U.S. manufacturing showed the lowest reading in more than 10 years in September as exports dived amid the escalated trade war.

The U.S. manufacturing purchasing managers’ index from the Institute for Supply Management came in at 47.8% in September, the lowest since June 2009, marking the second consecutive month of contraction. Any figure below 50% signals a contraction.

The new export orders index was only 41%, the lowest level since March 2009, down from the August reading of 43.3%, ISM data showed.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/10/01/us-manufacturing-economy-contracts-to-worst-level-in-a-decade.html

How about all those steel mills that would be re-opening?  That was another economic promise. 

It seems that this sector is not as stable thanx to Trump….

Louisiana is the latest state to see a steel mill close due to President Donald Trump’s tariffs.

“Hundreds of Louisiana steelworkers are finding out they no longer have a job. This comes as Bayou Steel “unexpectedly” shut down its mill in LaPlace on Monday.

Now, 376 people are looking for new work.

Bayou Steel transports and makes steel beams and other similar products. They also collect industrial scrap for recycling. Company officials say the mill will be permanently closed on November 30, and sent out a WARN letter to parish and state officials Monday. That letter cited ‘…unforeseen business circumstances and the inability to secure necessary capital’ for the closure….

Steel Mill In State That Voted For Trump Closes Suddenly, Leaving Hundreds Jobless

Trump’s economic adviser stated that “Manufacturing is strong as a rock”….maybe they misspoke and meant that it is sinking like a rock.

Then there is all the talk about how well the sanctions Trump has imposed is doing for the country…..really?

The Trump administration has made sanctions a key part of its foreign policy arsenal, placing enormous economic pressure on nations like North Korea and Iran in a bid to force concessions in negotiations with the United States. But is there real evidence that this tactic works?

The U.S. government, it turns out, can’t be sure. A new report released by a government watchdog this week found that although the agencies that implement sanctions track their economic impact, they do not measure whether the sanctions achieve their aim in forcing a target to change its behavior.

https://outline.com/V5rVXb

Finally, what about the federal deficit under the Trump presidency?  Well thanks for the Trump tax cuts the deficit is approaching $1 trillion…that is trillion with a “T”…….

The federal budget deficit for 2019 is estimated at $984 billion, a hefty 4.7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and the highest since 2012, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said on Monday.

The difference between federal spending and revenue has only ever exceeded $1 trillion four times, in the period immediately following the global financial crisis.

The deficit, which has grown every year since 2015, is $205 billion higher than it was in 2018, a jump of 26 percent.

The CBO has warned that the nation’s debt is on an unsustainable path. Higher levels of debt increase borrowing costs, make it harder for the government to battle economic downturns and increase the share of future spending devoted to paying off interest costs.

https://thehill.com/policy/finance/464764-federal-deficit-estimated-at-984b-highest-in-seven-years#.XZvfoTG5TFN.twitter

If the 20320 election will truly be about the economy…then should not this stuff be making the news?

Just asking but I already know why….do you?

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“I Read, I Wrote and now You Know”

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