Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Now Is The Time For All Good Men…

Baltic Dry Index. 870 +15   Brent Crude 46.26

LIR Gold Target in 2019: $30,000.  Revised due to QE programs.

Eurasian Snow cover. (How bad will winter be?)

I remember when I first came to Washington. For the first six months you wonder how the hell you ever got here. For the next six months you wonder how the hell the rest of them ever got here.

Harry S. Truman

We open today with what else, the fight for the spoils of office in America. Happy days are here again. American’s get to vote and bring the never ending circus to a close. This election year in America, the land between the shining seas turned very muddy. Neither candidate for POTUS emerges smelling of roses, though some other more basic farmyard smell comes to mind. As for the FBI, it seems lately to have suffered a nervous breakdown. We can only wonder what they make of it all in Beijing and Moscow. Whoever wins, will Moscow claim it was them what won it?

Below, Reuters covers Tuesday’s stakes in America. But can electronic voting machines be trusted?

The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything.

Joseph Stalin

Clinton has 90 percent chance of winning: Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation

Tue Nov 8, 2016 | 12:01am EST
With hours to go before Americans vote, Democrat Hillary Clinton has about a 90 percent chance of defeating Republican Donald Trump in the race for the White House, according to the final Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation project.

Her chances are roughly similar to last week's odds, and any upset by Trump on Tuesday depends on an unlikely combination of turnouts of white, black and Hispanic voters in six or seven states, according to the survey released on Monday.

The former secretary of state was leading Trump by about 45 percent to 42 percent in the popular vote, and was on track to win 303 votes in the Electoral College to Trump’s 235, clearing the 270 needed for victory, the survey found.

Trump's chances rest with his performance in Florida, Michigan, North Carolina and Ohio, which were too close to call on Sunday, when polling ended, and Pennsylvania, where Clinton enjoyed a slim lead of three percentage points. For Trump to win, he will have to take most of those states.

Any combination of two losses in the three states of Florida, Michigan and Pennsylvania would almost assuredly result in a Clinton victory. At the same time, Trump must hold onto the traditionally Republican state of Arizona, where the race has drawn close, and hope that independent candidate Evan McMullin does not claim another Republican bastion, Utah.

Republicans, Democrats vie for control of Congress on Tuesday

Mon Nov 7, 2016 | 6:08am EST
A furious fight for control of the U.S. Congress being waged alongside the White House race between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump ends on Tuesday with elections that will help shape the country's policy decisions for the next two years.
At stake is Republicans' current grip on the Senate and House of Representatives. If voters hand power to Democrats in either chamber, 2017 will likely bring a more moderate bent to bills that lawmakers send to the new president for signing into law.
In order to win control of the Senate outright, Democrats would have to score a net gain of five seats. Republicans currently hold 54 Senate seats to 44 Democratic seats and two independents who align themselves with Democrats.
For much of the autumn campaign, political analysts were projecting Democrats would pick up anywhere from four to seven Senate seats.
But Democrats worried that the FBI's disclosure in late October it was reviewing newly discovered emails to see if they pertained to Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of state might tip some competitive races toward Republicans.
The FBI said on Sunday the agency had completed its review of the newly found emails and found no reason to change its July finding that no criminal charges were warranted against Clinton.
Democrats face a steeper challenge in the House, having to gain 30 seats to win back the majority they last held in 2010. Some analysts have been projecting Democrats could pick up anywhere from five to 20 seats.

Here's Your Cheat Sheet for How Markets Will React to the Election

November 7, 2016 — 12:56 PM GMT
The events of the past ten days — which have seen stocks, currencies, and commodities fluctuate in response to changes in the U.S. presidential race — drive this message home: elections can matter for financial markets, even if in some cases the effects are only temporary.

With the U.S. election just one day away, Bloomberg compiled a cross-asset guide to how Wall Street strategists predict the markets will react in the event that Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton wins the presidency. We've also included a separate scenario on how they might move if the Democrats recaptured the Senate and the House of Representatives along with the presidency; a Trump victory likely entails that Republicans would keep control of both houses of Congress.

Elsewhere, intentionally or not, China’s using the election distraction as an opportunity to devalue the Yuan. Back in the insane asylum known as the EUSSR,  the EC’s Juncker bombed Renzi’s strategy for winning Italy’s reform referendum. It’s almost as if the EUSSR wants Renzi to fail.

Yuan Heads Toward Six-Year Low as Capital Outflows Fuel Weakness

November 8, 2016 — 3:14 AM GMT Updated on November 8, 2016 — 5:04 AM GMT
The yuan weakened toward its lowest level in six years as the greenback strengthened and the government struggled to plug loopholes in capital controls.

The exchange rate fell 0.03 percent to 6.7788 per dollar at 12:04 p.m. local time, extending a 0.3 percent slump on Monday that was the biggest in a month. The latest data show China’s foreign-exchange reserves dropped last month by the most since January while exports plunged 7.3 percent, adding pressure for further currency weakness. The yuan slid for a sixth day against a basket of peers.

Officials have stepped up measures to curb outflows as investors seek to hedge against a weakening currency and traders ascribed a higher likelihood that Hillary Clinton will become the next U.S. president, boosting the dollar. In recent weeks China limited the use of UnionPay Co.’s cards to buy insurance products in Hong Kong, while Bloomberg News reported authorities are planning to curb transactions that use bitcoins to shift funds out of the country.

"The larger-than-expected drop in reserves underscores capital outflows in October, and as we know central banks also intervene in the forward markets, the reserves data are hardly likely to give a full picture of fund exits," said Fiona Lim, a senior currency strategist at Malayan Banking Bhd. in Singapore. "And there is wide expectation for the yuan to weaken against the dollar beyond the U.S. presidential election result. So all in all, risks to the yuan really are to the downside."

Stop attacking EU Commission on fiscal policy, Juncker tells Renzi

Mon Nov 7, 2016 | 2:40pm EST
Italy should stop attacking the European Commission over its fiscal policy, the EU executive's president said on Monday, as Rome and Brussels quarrel over an expansionary budget proposed by Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

Renzi has criticised the Commission on several occasions, saying it applies rules too strictly.

"Italy is constantly attacking the Commission, wrongly so, and this does not produce the results they want," Jean-Claude Juncker told a conference, adding that changes to fiscal rules had allowed Italy to spend 19 billion euros more this year.

"It should no longer be said that this Commission continues the austerity measures applied in the past," Juncker said.

"If one wants to say it, one can ... but, in fact, I don't care."

Renzi has proposed a budget for 2017 that would not cut Italy's structural deficit as European Union rules require and that includes a headline budget deficit figure that is higher than previously agreed with the EU.
Replying to Juncker in a public speech later on Monday, Renzi said: "We are not making trouble, we are not intimidated by anyone."

"We can talk about investments but on securing school buildings no one can block us: we will keep that money outside of the Stability Pact," he added.

Italy's 2017 budget earmarks more than 6 billion euros, or 0.4 percent of its gross domestic product, in additional spending on migrants and to cover reconstruction costs after major earthquakes that have rocked the country this year.

But Juncker said that migrants and earthquakes would have an additional cost equivalent only to 0.1 percent of GDP.

---- Separately, commissioner in charge of economic affairs, Pierre Moscovici, told a news conference the Commission would state its position when it publishes opinions on the draft budget plans of Italy and other EU states on Nov. 16.

The EU executive will release its economic forecasts for member countries over the next two years on Wednesday.

We close for the day, with GB and India getting ready for the day Brexit’s a hard fact reality.

All government without the consent of the governed is the very definition of slavery.

Jonathan Swift

India, UK set up trade working group: Modi

Mon Nov 7, 2016 | 5:41am EST
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday that he had agreed with British counterpart Theresa May to set up a joint working group on trade, adding that its focus should not only be on goods but also services.
As part of that, it would be important to allow for greater mobility of skilled professionals, Modi said after bilateral talks with May in New Delhi.

UK PM May signals flexibility on visas for Indians

Mon Nov 7, 2016 | 5:41am EST
British prime minister Theresa May said on Monday that Britain could show more flexibility in offering visas to Indian visitors if it is possible to step up the pace of returning those who have outstayed their welcome.
She made the pledge after talks with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at which the two agreed to set up a working group to explore deeper trade and investment between the two countries as Britain prepares to leave the European Union.
"The UK will consider further improvements to our visa offer if at the same time we can step up the speed and volume of returns of Indians with no right to remain," May told reporters in New Delhi, referring to the launch of a separate strategic dialogue on home affairs.

No one party can fool all of the people all of the time; that's why we have two parties.

Bob Hope

At the Comex silver depositories Monday final figures were: Registered 29.84 Moz, Eligible 143.70 Moz, Total 173.54 Moz. 

Crooks and Scoundrels Corner

The bent, the seriously bent, and the totally doubled over.
Today it’s those unlovable crooks of the EUSSR again. While Americans get to vote for a new POTUS, European votes don’t generally tend to change anything. But did that all come to an end with Brexit? Will Brexit finally force some  reform on to the Continental Insane Asylum?

Italy's 5-Star tours Europe in bid to sink Renzi's referendum

Sun Nov 6, 2016 | 3:15pm EST
A month away from a referendum on constitutional reform that could sink the government, Italy's largest opposition party wants to make sure Prime Minister Matteo Renzi is not saved by the votes of Italians abroad.
Luigi Di Maio, one of the most prominent faces of the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, heads to London on Tuesday to kick off a 10-day campaign against the referendum that will also take him to Madrid, Brussels, Paris and Berlin.
5-Star, whose appeal is based on a drive against the corruption that has tainted Italy's politics for decades, has good reason to be wary of the army of 3 million expatriates who have the right to vote.
The maverick group was the most voted party in Italy at the last national election in 2013, but after the ballots were counted from Italians living abroad it was overtaken by the Democratic Party (PD), allowing it to lead a new government.
Di Maio, a 30-year-old parliamentarian widely expected to be 5-Star's candidate for prime minister at the next election due in 2018, aims to avoid a repeat performance with the referendum.
"We want to explain the risks of this reform to Italians abroad because if 'Yes' wins we will never get rid of the political class that forced them to emigrate," he told Reuters in an interview.
Italians faced with a chronically stagnant economy and a lack of work have been emigrating in growing numbers in recent years. Some 107,000 moved abroad in 2015, according to official data, but the actual figure is believed to be much higher.
Renzi says his plan to reduce drastically the role of the Senate and curb the powers of regional governments will simplify decision-making and ensure stable government.
Opponents say it will actually make the legislative process more complicated and reduce checks and balances.
"This reform will give more power to the people who have brought our country to the state it is in," said Di Maio, whose party is roughly level with the PD according to recent polls.
Earlier this year Renzi repeatedly said he would resign if he lost the Dec. 4 referendum. In the last two months he has declined to confirm that, saying discussion of his own future deflected attention from the merits of the reform.
---- With all the opposition parties lined up against the reform, Renzi faces an uphill struggle. Of 33 opinion polls published in the last month, all but one has put 'No' ahead.
However, with around a quarter of voters still undecided, pollsters say the result remains highly uncertain.
Moreover, the polls do not include Italians living abroad. Pollsters expect less than a third of these to cast a ballot, but they say of those that do, most will probably vote 'Yes'. In a very tight race this could be crucial.

EU's Juncker shocked by 'liberal' German commissioner's remarks

Sat Nov 5, 2016 | 7:36am EDT
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he was shocked by remarks by Germany's European commissioner that offended China, gay people and French-speaking Belgians this week, but was convinced they do not represent his true views.
Juncker was commenting in his first interview on the matter since Guenther Oettinger last week called Chinese people "slit-eyes", joked about "compulsory gay marriage" and railed at a Belgian region's efforts to block an EU-Canada trade deal.
"A Commissioner cannot hold such views. I told him he had to apologize to those who could have felt targeted," Juncker said in an interview with the Belgian newspaper Le Soir on Saturday.
Oettinger apologized on Thursday, saying he realized his remarks had "hurt" people. But the long delay before he issued an apology sparked an outcry that threatened to jeopardize trade ties with China.
His U-turn came a day after the Chinese foreign ministry condemned his remarks and said they reflected a "baffling sense of superiority" among Western politicians.
Oettinger, 63, had previously accepted only that his comments on Oct. 25 had been "somewhat sloppy".
Juncker said he only learned of the comments on Wednesday night after a long holiday weekend: "I couldn't immediately turn my attention to this Oettinger's clumsiness."
But he said a conversation with the Commissioner convinced him that the comments did not represent his true opinion and that they "shared the same views".
"I sincerely think these comments did not convey his thoughts. He is a liberal man on social issues, and so I was surprised," Juncker told Le Soir.
Last Friday, before his comments had been widely reported, Juncker announced a promotion for Oettinger, who has a reputation for plain talk, from digital affairs to vice president for the budget.
The Commission is battling for public support for the European Union in the face of rising nationalist opposition exemplified by Britain's vote to leave the bloc in June.
Public outcry over Oettinger's comments comes after a scandal over whether former European Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso broke ethics rules by taking a job at Goldman Sachs.

A politician needs the ability to foretell what is going to happen tomorrow, next week, next month, and next year. And to have the ability afterwards to explain why it didn’t happen.

Winston Churchill

Solar  & Related Update.

With events happening fast in the development of solar power and graphene, I’ve added this section. Updates as they get reported. Is converting sunlight to usable cheap AC or DC energy mankind’s future from the 21st century onwards? DC? A quantum computer next?

Vast Moroccan solar power plant is hard act for Africa to follow

Sat Nov 5, 2016 | 11:04am EDT
On the edge of the Sahara desert, Morocco is building one of the world's biggest solar power plants in a project largely funded by the European Union.
It is a hard success for other African nations to match as they seek to implement a new global deal to combat climate change.
The huge 160-megawatt first phase of the Noor plant near the town of Ouarzazate contrasts with efforts by some other nations focused on tiny roof-top solar panels to bring power to remote rural homes.
At Noor, curved mirrors totaling 1.5 million square meters (16 million square feet) - the size of about 200 soccer pitches - capture the sun's heat in the reddish desert.
Morocco is showcasing Noor before talks among almost 200 nations in Marrakesh about implementing a global deal to combat climate change that entered into force on Nov. 4 - a day when the Saharan sky was unusually overcast with spots of rain.
"We hope we can be an inspiration," Mustapha Bakkoury, head of the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy (Masen), told Reuters. Many African nations are pushing to boost economic growth to end poverty, while seeking greener energies.
The gleaming concentrated solar power plant is not economically competitive with cheaper fossil fuels, but is a step to develop new technologies as prices for solar power fall sharply.
"Unfortunately for many, it's thought that renewables are to have a light bulb or light a school ... This is to get away from the caricature of renewables," Bakkoury said.
Morocco aims to get 52 percent of its electricity from clean energy such as wind and solar by 2030, up from 28 percent now.
Once completed, Noor will cost 2.2 billion euros ($2.45 billion) and generate 580 MW, enough power for a city of almost 2 million people. Morocco aims to expand at other desert regions to 2 gigawatts of solar capacity by 2020 at a cost of $9 billion.
On the sprawling site, south of the snow-capped Atlas Mountains, workers clear ground with diggers, build concrete pillars or clean off Saharan dust that dims sunshine. In Arabic, Noor means light.
By contrast in East Africa, M-KOPA Solar has installed 400,000 tiny rooftop solar panel systems costing $200 each on homes in the past five years to provide power for light bulbs and a radio. That completely by-passes the grid.
M-KOPA Chief Executive Jesse Moore, whose company focuses most on Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, said rooftop solar systems were a breakthrough for Africa, where half the 1.2 billion people lack electricity.

Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies.

Groucho Marx

The monthly Coppock Indicators finished October

DJIA: 18142  +32 Up NASDAQ:  5189 +31 Up. SP500: 2126 +46 Up.

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