A few years ago, as the stock market experienced wild ups and downs, I watched 5 guest panelists on CNBC express their opinions on the reasons for the volatility. Actually, seven people interrupted and talked over one another in their zeal to get their points across. The two hosts, who were supposed to be interviewing the five panelists, spent most of the time expressing their own opinions. The one common denominator was that all seven continually referred to "The Fed," wondering how that institution might move to solve the problem. I had to laugh. These were supposedly sophisticated people, representatives of financial and educational institutions and think tanks. And yet they seemed to be as painfully ignorant of the truth concerning the "The Fed" (more formally known as 'The Federal Reserve System') as the average American on the street.
Officially, 8.3 million Americans are unemployed (5.5%). In reality, 22.81 million (13.3%) are out of work. The official number isn’t even in the right ballpark. It’s a national emergency. Here’s the proof...
2016 was the year of “never happened befores” and wrong bets. Brexit wasn’t supposed to happen, but it did. The EU was supposed to expand, but it contracted, as Switzerland, Sweden, Iceland and others withdrew their applications. The EU utopian idea of open borders and an end to the sovereign nations of Europe is gone, as borders are closed and many more referendums on exiting the EU are coming. Clinton was supposed to win, but Trump did. The US economy was supposed to have a growth rate of 2.8%, but it didn’t, and interest rates were supposed to be raised four times, but like the year before, they were only raised a quarter point in December. The Japanese economy was supposed to expand and the yen was supposed to devalue, but they didn’t, instead the yen rose and the BOJ dropped interest rates to negative.1%. Assad was supposed to be defeated and the rebels were supposed to create a democracy, but they didn’t, and now the Assad government is poised to retake control over Syria with the help of Russia.
I welcome the election of President-Elect Donald Trump with great excitement. This is the first time in history that we have had a president who was not shackled by having to please the political establishment. Not even Ronald Reagan had this freedom. He was forced to place people in key positions in his administration who compromised his conservative agenda. We may have the first true conservative government in history.
The economic significance of this cannot be overstated. Investment Grade Gold had its biggest bull market in history during the Reagan years. This historic election could not be more timely. The time to get out of paper and into Gold is now!
Since our government has embarked on its suicidal mission to massively increase the amount of worthless dollars it prints, I have embarked on a mission to protect my family from the government’s recklessness.
The politicians think they have pulled a real sly trick on the American public with buying into and propagating the Boskin Commission’s Core Index method of reporting inflation. By using this method they have avoided raising COLA payments to seniors on Social Security, veterans pensions, and federal employees pension. No one has been able to break this stance and many in the media simply take it as okay and meekly mumble that inflation is under control according to government reporting. This is blindness, self-inflicted.
The fast food industry is not the only industry that employs people at or near the minimum wage level. Janitors, for example, are often paid the minimum. Thanks to the sacrifice of today’s activists, the advances in robotics will lead to machinery cleaning office buildings and manufacturing plants. The increase in demand for this equipment will lead to more manufacturing jobs, which will lead, over time, to greater supply and more affordable machinery. Cheap robots will serve the unemployed former minimum wage earners. Ah, the irony of life.
My wife’s mother cried the first time she saw Ritz Crackers in a US store. Why? She had just emigrated to this nation, and eating Ritz Crackers was one of the many good memories she had of the time when Cuba was still Cuba. Once Castro took over the nation, most of the good things ended.
While they still lived under Castro’s oppression, and after they came here, her mother told her many things about the time “When Cuba was Cuba.” She told her about freedom, property rights and individual choice about such things as where one’s children would go to school.
In 2015 the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 398 points, after being up in 2013 & 2014. On January 4, 2016 the Dow opened at 17,425 and five days later, closed at 16,346, down 1079 points, wiping out all of 2014's gains and 230 points of 2013's gains. This means that most people who have been in the US stock markets for the last two years have virtually earned nothing.
Last Sunday, I was in the city of Manila speaking for one of the many Victory churches in the Philippines. The Victory church network there was addressing the subject of wealth in a series entitled The Fine Line. My speaking assignment was on what the Bible has to say about selfishness and generosity. Let me share a bit of what I shared with the Filipinos on this subject.
There are all kinds of gifts you can give this Christmas - but some are harder to wrap than others!
I know Christmas is several weeks away. But you need to act now if you want to give a really significant gift – one that can change lives, and even save lives. Compassion International (www.Compassion.com) is a wonderful organization that ministers to both the physical and the spiritual needs of impoverished people around the world. And they always make sure that people know the help they give comes from people who love Jesus.
When the United States was founded, extreme financial discipline was the rule, not the exception. If the nation did not have the money to acquire an asset or construct a project, it did not spend the money. How quant this concept would seem to our politicians today, who don’t seem to understand the meaning of the term “fiscal restraint.”
Before we put any money into the stock market, we need to define our trading personality. The first step in this process is to determine whether we are traders or investors. Investors usually hold positions for a longer period of time than traders.
Once upon a time the United States of America was the world’s wealthiest nation. The dollar was 100% backed by gold. In 1933 the US was on the Gold Standard under which our currency explicitly certified that the there was on deposit in the US treasury Gold payable upon demand to the holder. You could take a $20 bill to any bank and receive a one ounce gold coin in exchange.
The nation of Cyprus has beaten out Britney Spears, murder trials, and basketball for attention in the news cycle for the past week. The only problem is that most TV viewers have little or no idea of where Cyprus is and its significance.
Have you ever heard the media, insurance companies and government officials refer to "Acts of God"? Basically, they blame God for everything from earthquakes to hurricanes. We could debate the theology of this type of thinking, but we'll leave that for another time.
If George Washington were alive today, he would be angry to see his likeness being used on counterfeit currency. There are trillions of dollars of U.S. currency of all denominations in circulation today, bearing the portraits of various dead presidents. They are all counterfeit. And the U.S. coins you have in your pocket or purse? They’re counterfeit as well.
My wife’s mother once told her, “Your education is your inheritance.” Her family had escaped from Castro’s Cuba when my wife, Ana, was 11. They lost everything, including her father’s business, when they left. Although he worked hard in this country, he was almost 50 when they arrived in “Estados Unidos,” and was never able to build up much wealth.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 14,000 on Friday for the first time in five years. So what? One of the biggest lies in financial circles is that the stock markets reflect the American economy. The reason that many people believe the lie is that it used to be true. This falsehood was particularly helpful in Obama’s bid for re-election.