As discussed in previous posts, the world keeps changing and pivoting AWAY from America, World Police to a more Eurasian-centric balance of power. I pound home the point that the BRICS nations are here to pluck power away from our economic system, via death by a thousand cuts. I'm not going to restate the obvious of where the wind is blowing, but when your economy is built on fraudulent derivatives, six years of 0% interest rates, and $3.4 trillion of monopoly money printed out of thin air, you are ripe for the pickens. And Vladimir Putin knows this. But lets do the appropriate 'what did you call vs what did you totally miss the boat on' for 2014. It helps gauge the accuracy of alternative media and whether or not my tinfoil hat is in need of tightening.
Here is last year's post:
"Dude, you're onto something"
- I wrote about how Russia would become Public Enemy #1. I said watch for escalation after the Sochi Olympics. Within days, the Crimea takeover occurred. MH17 got shot down in July, blamed on Putin before the final ashes were put out. Sanctions. Alternative forms of international settlement. Etc etc.
- Ramp-up in big-ticket cyberattacks. We saw it with 'The Interview' and blamed on North Korea (though ultimately a disgruntled employee, nothing to see here folks). Continued delays in market trading on large exchanges. Big retail companies being hacked into, personal information compromised. The big ISIS attack on CentComm Monday. Source of hacks continues to be Iran, North Korea, China, Russia, ISIS. Expect anything less in 2015? Look for these to even emanate from inside the DC beltway as a pretext to map out 'comprehensive internet security regulations'. CISPA under any other name. We can blame on whomever we want. As long as we get big internet regulations, mission accomplished.
- Amnesty in 2014. Hussein Obama announced in November that there would be comprehensive changes. 5 million are impacted at last count, expected to expand in 2015.
- BRICS Currency closer to launch. Russian sanctions forced them into the loving arms of China. They are now attached at the hip. I previously recapped the financial mechanisms to launch the currency (this will be the last step). Development bank alternative: check. SWIFT alternative: check (as of May 2015). BRICS bank: check (by early 2016). Revaluation of gold reserves in 2015: oh baby you gotta watch. China revalues every xxx years. Rumors abound that their stated 2 thousand tons will be updated to 15k PLUS this year. That more than backs a gold currency.
- Watch Pope Francis on the world stage. Yup, he's officially Catholic Rock Star. Critical in the recent Cuba reset of relations (neutral, just give me my cigars), multiple overtures to other branches to unite the Christian message (good), subtle overtures to other religions for united message (ummm....slight concern), lashing out against global banking system (good but what is your alternative, if its 'one world' in nature you are playing into the Revelation trap and I distrust you). Read his new papal encyclicals on proper doctrine. Pope Frank the man: awesome. Love him. Pope Frank the transformational figure, in light of Revelation's mention of a 'false prophet' and his fulfillment of St Malachy's prophecy of the Popes (112th and final Pope): Keep one eye open.
- Obamacare nightmare. Easiest call. The Jonathan Gruber fiasco. The 2-10x anecdotal increases to John Q. Public. The subsidy nightmare that means tax implications for anybody that took one on their 'affordable' healthcare. The corporate mandate starting in 2015 with increased fees. Can only go down from here folks.
"Boy who cried wolf too many times"
I love getting less than savory feedback. In my personal life, in my professional career, on my blog posts, whatever. Hashtag 'own it'. Here are some huge-ass misses:
- End of the gold/silver smackdown. Nope. Still hovering around $1200 GLD/$16 SLV. Central planners can keep the gig going as long as it takes for the public to notice. It'll end, yes, but never on the timeline expected. Watch the BRICS gold-backed currency announcement, its the game changer.
- Deposit confiscation. Nope. Well, kinda nope. It didn't HAPPEN per se, but the European Union and...wait for it....OUR DEMOCRATICALLY ELECTED CONGRESS this past December signed into law through the cromnibus $1.1 trillion budget resolution that the public (depositors) now become creditors which means when the derivatives crisis hits (or any banking crisis for that matter), guess who is on the hook to PAY for it via 'bail-ins'? [holds up mirror to face]. So no, nothing in 2014, but the legislation was set up for a future event.
- Treasury yield explosion. Nope. Last check is was sub-2%. I called for 3%, but that never happened, mainly due to the fact that the yen, ruble, euro, etc instability resulted in capital flight to old-reliable dollar, the cleanest dirty shirt, the best smelling homeless person.
- Stock market collapse. Never happened. Will happen, just not last year. They wound down the QE, are teasing rate increases in 2015. More on that later.
So those were the hits and misses. Now onto what I think will be happening in 2015.
- QE4 - the Federal Reserve officially wound down Quantitative Easing #3 back in November. The market has been experiencing larger swings ever since, and correspondingly the price of oil has cratered. Not to say the Dow can't climb above 18k again, but without the steroid, the athlete cannot obtain prior glory. The same can be said of an unsterilized monetary system that chases money into asset bubbles. As the oil plunge continues, and the high yield bond market of $500 billion implodes, look for the Federal Reserve to stem losses with fresh bond buying and other cash injections. Heavier than ever before. Probably third quarter 2015.
|Peter Schiff has it right, like he did in 2006|
- Greece gets kicked out of the Euro. This has been in the offing for three years, finally to come to fruition in 2015. Germany has already prepared its economy and its people for a 'Grexit'. It's technically the right thing to do for Greece, since it can revert back to the drachma, take large haircuts, and decouple from the Euro before other countries leave en masse and the whole thing falls apart.
- QE, Rest of World takes on a life of its own. Japan took the baton in November within HOURS of the Fed closing down QE3. As I've said before, they are the human shield for the US dollar. All currencies aligned with the United States are circling the wagons around the USD. Japan has debauched and pulverized their currency. Now the Euro is next to fall. With a Grexit on the horizon, ECB chief Mario Draghi will be initiating Euro QE within weeks. This will further drive a wedge between Germany and the EU, forcing them to pivot East (as discussed in prior posts).
- Interest Rate increase will take place in June 2015. The Fed carefully wordsmiths every announcement because it has such an impact on the markets. 'Taper' announcements caused tantrums, 'kicking the can' on rate increases causes 1000 point Dow increases. Based on three or four sentences. They've teased it for a year, now they will make good. This will make debt more expensive due to interest and will kill whatever real estate recovery we've had. If you are buying a house this year, do it sooner than later.
- Oil Crash before our very eyes. I think it bottoms out at $30-$35, and hovers there for six months before slowly climbing back up to around $100-$115 by end of 2017. As mentioned in a prior post, this is CURTAINS for the shale industry that we were so happy about. Cheaper for us to gas up = great. Weekly rig closings, 200k+ job losses domestically, global slowdown, $500b of high yield energy bond exposure. All to keep Russia in line. Solid work.
- Market Crash in September 2015. US GDP is really close to 0%, despite headlines of 5% annualized Q3 cheerleading (driven by strategically dumping all of 2014's Obamacare expenditures into one quarter). Oil crash weighing heavily on this as well as a built-up tolerance to stimulus. Contagion of energy company bankruptcies, bank exposure, derivative exposure, and lower earnings will all hit between August 28th-September 13th.
- The Syria attack was rekindled in 2014 under the guise of this ISIS war. We couldn't get congressional approval nor general public support for a full-scale invasion two years ago. Now we have the ISIS threat that will magically go deep into Syria and....shocker....will try to overthrow the Assad regime. We will bomb ISIS and, well lookie here - we might as well bomb Assad too! Q3 bombing campaign.
- Large false flag sometime in late winter/early spring in the Middle East to move things along against ISIS. We are constantly inching towards a global conflict and somehow keeping the balancing act going. Canada, Australia, France, soon country xxx will have a 'lone wolf' attack. These are small ball for the terrorists and a larger attack will solidify their power. Big happenings to go down in order to drive us deeper into Syria and 'validate' our mission.
- Sleeper cells awakening in the US. We've seen it in other countries and even saw several cases of radicalized jihadists domestically last year. The eternal scary muslim boogeyman must be kept alive, so expect a lot more 'lone wolf' attacks across the west. Apparently the 'violent white christian libertarian 2nd amendment activist' never materialized. The heavy rumor (as the Monday cyber attack by ISIS implied) is that US military and law enforcement are no longer safe. I pray this doesn't happen, but the suspicion is that they will be hunted down at their homes and slaughtered for 'crimes against xxxx'.
- Russia morphs into a hot shooting war with NATO. If you are paying attention, you would notice that since Crimea, Russia has refused to significantly escalate the battle for the heart of Ukraine. They've shown impressive discipline despite the fact that NATO has violated their own treaties from twenty years ago to not keep creeping up to Russia's borders (of which always noble NATO denies on their website through carefully selected verbiage). Patience is running thin, Russia wants payment for loans to Ukraine (financed by US taxpayer this past summer, thanks so much). I say towards the end of they year Russia has had enough and attacks back when the US is distracted with economic troubles. The world is waiting for Putin to go off the rails, but he continues to show remarkable restraint. As mentioned in a prior post, he is being punished by the West with crashing oil prices (premeditated action by the Saudis, contrary to public pronouncements). Call it the 'cut off nose to spite face' club. This is what energy independence looks like for the US - cratering oil prices, closure of rigs to engage in Russian/Saudi Arabia proxy wars. Russia can bear 18 months worth of sub-$60 oil. They are more disciplined than the West and more patient. Watch the Ukraine/Russia border later this year.
- Ebola returns to the US. We had a czar named (since moved on), hospitals designated as treatment centers, and under-reporting of the explosion of cases in Africa. No flight bans were initiated and while Senegal is now Ebola-free, this has been far from contained.
So that's the view for 2015. Exciting things right now, with all of the pussy-footing around the Paris terror attack last week and the ISIS cyberattack early this week (oh sorry, 'cyber trespassing', 'cyber graffiti', 'cyber vandalism'). Happy New Year!