Trump: “Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences”

“Companies are not going to leave the United States anymore without consequences. Not going to happen. It’s not going to happen, I’ll tell you right now,” Trump said on Thursday at a rally in Indiana as he boasted about the job’s he’d saved at Carrier, a company that purportedly planned to go to move 2,100 jobs to Mexico.


Spanish Government Limits Cash Withdrawals to €1,000

The Spanish Government acted today to cap cash payments at €1,000, down from the current cap of  €2,500. Anti-fraud measures enacted today include a VAT information and increased regulation of deferred payments.

The government is working on measures against fraud, including limiting the payment in cash to 1,000 euros instead of the current 2,500. The decree is set to be approved by the Council of Ministers next Friday. The Ministry of Finance admits  it could be delayed. (more…)

India, Venezuela & Zimbabwe All Have Tragic Cash Problems

The word “cash” means different things in some parts of the world than in the US, Europe Australia and many other of the more stable economies worldwide. The Venezuela crisis has been ongoing, but trials and tribulations in India have meant a population short on cash. Meanwhile, things are “bizarre” in Zimbabwe where dollars go for dollars..with a premium. (more…)

Man Who Set Self on Fire in Australia Bank Complained about “No money for food”

Two people were in critical condition and four others suffered serious burns when a man set himself on fire in a bank in Melbourne, Australia earlier this week.

The 21-year-old man, one of the critically injured patients, walked into Commonwealth Bank in the Melbourne bank carrying flammable accelerant and started a fire about 11:30 am AEDT.

The Fear Index is Predicting A Hillary Clinton Election Victory

This week the VIX index closed higher than 20 for the first time since June right before Brexit. The S&P 500 fell nine consecutive days in a row through last Friday, the first time that’s happened since gold and silver broke records in the late seventies and early eighties.

Monday and Tuesday saw generally positive momentum into the markets. Bitcoin, too, has increased in price, much like it did ahead of Brexit.


Over the most recent nine sessions, VIX has increased each time.  Early in the day, VIX continued its rise on Tuesday up 6%, but it fell throughout the afternoon leading many analysts to suggest a Ms. Clinton presidential victory. As Wall Street Journal suggests, a Clinton victory could mean a long way to fall for the VIX index.


“Once the election is over, a lot of the uncertainty and fear will go away,” Rocky Fishman, equity derivatives strategist for Deutsche Bank, told WSJ. “People will have a well-defined result by Wednesday.”


The VIX would seem to be suggesting that there will be no Donald Trump presidency, but, rather, Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton will be named the president-elect after a long and tough journey to the Presidency which saw the Democratic National Convention come under national scrutiny and Ms. Clinton’s use of internet servers drawing much scrutiny by U.S. law enforcement.

By noon Pacific Standard Time, the VIX had dropped more than 4% to 17.92. It dropped massively yesterday, ending the abovementioned nine day rally.

A Bitcoin volatility index, which most recently detected increased BTC volatility in July, in the wake of Brexit, has seen a steady climb in recent days, but the index is still far off its year-to-date highs.


The US Mint Won’t Even Buy Back Its Own Coins

Importers of scrap coins have waited for years as the US government tested coins, failing to return them without due process. Many coins appear to have been released by the government to go back to the proper owners. Yes, the U.S. Mint’s suspended buyback program remains suspended, meaning the US government won’t buy back its own currency. Coin recyclers are searching for other means to redeem their coin inventory.

The U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is due to release over $700,000 in coin shipments to three importers, and pay over  $300,000 in melted coins detained and withheld without due process since 2014 and 2015, sources say.

Portland, Ore.-based Portland Mint LLC learned of the release of a shipment detained by the CBP for 507 days, according AMM.

The Mint’s program means recyclers will have to get creative. They can’t melt the coins down themselves, as it’s illegal to destroy U.S. currency. Coin recyclers are waiting to hear from the U.S. government what they can do with the piles of coins they’re collecting at global facilities.  Recyclers bemoan that the US government won’t even buy back its own currency.

“The suspension of shipments to the Mint has caused a severe business hardship, as we have been held up from shipping to the Mint for nearly 18 months. This includes almost six months prior to the formal suspension of the program in which we were unable to get an appointment to deliver coins,” according to an anonymous heavy media plant operator.

“While we understand and can deal with the market risks associated with scrap metals, we could never have imagined the current scenario under which U.S. currency has essentially become worthless with no ability to monetize it. … We are currently looking at various methods to clean and recirculate these coins, as we need to be able to recoup some of the costs already expended. On a much broader level, if the program stays on hold what impact will the continued suspension have on the monetary value of the coins and U.S. currency?” the source rhetorically asked.

Luke Palen, president of Rosemount, Minn.-based Spectro Alloys Corp.

concurred: “We’re frustrated that the program is still offline due to the fact that we want to be able to capture the value of all these coins.”

More frustration by other industry insiders: “This is currency and its value is being lost,” said Steve Bossotti, senior vice president of Morristown, N.J.-based Covanta Holding Corp.’s metals management division. Covanta might sort through its inventory for unmutilated coins – roughly one-third of the company’s coins.

Bossotti noted: “We are evaluating cleaning and sorting the coins and returning them into the U.S. banking system. We’d spend more time to process (them) and get less value but if the status quo continues, we have to look at doing something different because it’s value being lost.”

Industry CEO’s are willing to work with the government. “…But the Mint and Treasury haven’t even replied or taken us up on our offer,” Johnson said.

He added: “I don’t know how they can make a valid choice to stop the program, but we also understand that they need to figure it out. … This is U.S. currency and recyclers have a legal duty to redeem it. We need the Mint to lift the suspension as soon as possible.” The Treasury isn’t set to make a change to the program until November 2.

“The coins aren’t going anywhere until the program is resumed. It’s encouraging to see that the U.S. government is releasing our coins, but until the program comes out of a suspension there will continue to be far-reaching impacts through the industry,” said John J. Coughlin, a Moorestown, N.J.-based attorney representing three importers who are now suing the government for failing to return inventory without due process.

How Broke And Stoned Are You?

Rodrigo studied law, but never became a lawyer. The Mexican-American lives in Tijuana and works as a cannabis activist in California. He bounces between jobs. Depending on income, he smokes as much cannabis as possible.

35, Rodrigo laments how hard liquor leads him to spend money on friends and cocaine. He spends the most money on dates with his girlfriend.

Thanks to Mexican marijuana prices, he’s able to smoke cheap. He prefers US medical, and would only smoke that if he had the funds.

Raised in San Diego, Rodrigo has saved money living in the same place in Tijuana for seven years. A rough stretch once meant an entire year passed in which he failed to pay rent. His landlord said nothing. Does it depress him to be broke?

“Yes, it depresses me,” he says, “but, Tijuana makes it easier. I can make the money last.”

Rodrigo got paid the day before we spoke. Before payday, $4 were in his checking account. Now he had just under $1,000 which would need to last him until his next paycheck in two weeks.

“I am going to spend $500 this month on a co-working space in the heart of Tijuana I am trying to start with a friend,” he said. The co-working space has no workers, he said.

Rodrigo once laundered currency across the Tijuana-San Diego San Ysidro border. He profited from different exchange rates.  He got caught crossing without declaring $30,000. He was making more money than ever. He’s now a convicted felon.

“Man, if I had to live in San Diego, I’d have to move to Tijuana,” the American citizen, and Tijuana resident, quipped.

47% of US based respondents to the Federal Reserve board’s recent tri-annual Survey of Consumer Finance revealed that, in the event of a small emergency, they would not have more than $400 set aside. They would borrow from friends, family or sell belongings. Fifty seven percent said they burned through most of their savings after the 2008 financial crisis.

In a 2015 survey, 62 percent of respondents claimed to have fewer than $1000 in savings. 21 percent (mostly 35 through 54 year olds) had no savings account.

Older generations – especially those without money – have a hard time discussing money. MERRY JANE easily found stone broke cannabis users willing to talk financial misfortunes. Though like their older impecunious counterparts, they prefer to use pseudonyms.

No one knows how much former Lance Corporal Lew, 31, spent on marijuana before or after the marine corps, but he did smoke on a nearly daily basis. While without disability cheques last year, he lived residentially with the Veterans Administration for free boarding and housing.

“Obviously, I didn’t smoke during that period,” he told MERRY JANE. At present, Lew lives disability cheque to disability cheque, and therefore was not comfortable answering questions about current cannabis use. He admitted bouts with alcohol abuse had hurt his wallet far more than marijuana.

“I’ve never had a savings account even though I started working very young – around the age of ten,” he revealed.

Lew would mow neighbors lawns, babysit, do odds and ends and later gave swim lessons, all under the table.  At the age of fourteen he started working in restaurants.

“On one side of town, I worked at the Chinese stir fry, and at the other side of town I flipped burgers,” the Fallujah combat veteran recalled. That has led to a longstanding restaurant “career,” one he since re-entered after his time in the marine corps.

“Somewhere in the 2007-08 collapse one needed to work twice as hard for half the money,” he said. “I live off of my service connected disability and am going back to school for retraining. It’s extremely difficult to get hired in the non-federal field as a combat veteran. A certain stigma goes with the history. After twenty years of work, I still don’t have a savings account.”

Long Beach City resident Edmond, who works in physical therapy, says he “had the luxury” of being disabled – he lost the use of his legs –  and receive $800-$900 in disability per month.

“In Southern California, that might not even pay rent,” Edmond, 29, said. “I really struggled in marginal apartments.”

Now he makes “maybe” $2,000: “That doesn’t go too far either.”

Edmond says he is lucky there is public transportation to take him throughout Los Angeles. If he had to pay for a car outfitted for his disability, he’d be “flat broke each month.”

Currently working towards a masters, Edmond is now going into debt to improve his financial prospects. “It’s what it takes,” he said. “Pay at entry level jobs is a joke. If you’re single, and you’re trying to make it in So Cal, you need to pull in six figures with the tax implications. I do well with my disability, but it’s still a matter of scraping by.”

He buys marijuana from friends who harvest the plant in Northern California. They’ve supplied him since college. Marijuana doesn’t arrest Edmond’s budget too much. The self-admitted social alcoholic spends most of his money drinking. Edmond can spend a quad of marijuana (one month’s supply for him) worth of money in one night of drinking.

“I’ve lowered my alcohol intake,” he said. “Granted, today is Wednesday and I am going out tonight. And I will prob go out tomorrow and Friday. So, yeah, definitely alcohol is a greater detriment to my wallet and bank account than marijuana.” He contends marijuana saves him money.

“It helps me chill and take it easy, enjoy free festivals around Long Beach, concerts and art galleries,” the San Diego County native said. “With marijuana, I don’t get stuck in a bar. It helps me to be a bit more adventurous. It keeps me in check.”

Edmond injured himself drinking. It’d never have happened stoned, he says. No chronic pain, smoking bud just gives him “more enjoyment of life.”

“I just like to get stoned every once in awhile, relax and not worry about money or fucking whatever it might be with how expensive So Cal is,” he says. “Marijuana brings me back to the old school Cali’ days of enjoying the beach and enjoying life.”

“I’m not gonna be poor i always have enough to do what i want to do. Maybe i dont have a lot of savings i always have enough to get all my things.”

Bitcoin Companies Have No Problem Complying

Many people have opined that Bitcoin is not illegal, such as Chris Kitze. Their argument centers on how the digital currency does not comply with know your customer and anti-money laundering regulations.

But, it’s likely Bitcoin is easily regulatable. In general, it’s business, not the financial instruments themselves, that do the regulating. Incorporated businesses virtually sign documents stating that, if they come across individuals breaking laws, they will report them. This is particularly the case when it comes to the financial industry. Bitcoin companies are generally considered financial companies.

Reports flood the internet about Bitcoin related companies instituting stringent know your customer and anti-money laundering policies – the policies which ensure that people are not profiting from illegal fund moving or terrorist financing.