As Crisis Brews in the Balkans, the West Looks On

By Cameron Munter – Re-Blogged From https://Worldview.Stratfor.com

In the first six months of U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration, five foreign policy challenges have dominated the national and international spotlight. China’s expanding economic and military role, Russia’s tenuous relations with Europe and the Middle East, ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Syria, threats stemming from North Korea and Venezuela, and Europe’s future amid rising populist movements in the United Kingdom and France have taken center stage among the world’s policymakers.

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Suddenly, “De-Dollarization” Is A Thing

By John Rubino – Re-Blogged From Dollar Collapse

For what seems like decades, other countries have been tiptoeing away from their dependence on the US dollar. China, Russia, and India have cut deals in which they agree to accept each others’ currencies for bi-lateral trade while Europe, obviously, designed the euro to be a reserve asset and international medium of exchange.

These were challenges to the dollar’s dominance, but they weren’t mortal threats.

What’s happening lately, however, is a lot more serious. It even has an ominous-sounding name: de-dollarization. Here’s an excerpt from a much longer article by “strategic risk consultant” F. William Engdahl:

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Is It Time to Escape to Your Personal Alamo?

By Nick Giambruno – Re-Blogged From International Man

Doug Casey, Jeff Thomas, and Nick Giambruno recently discussed a topic they all think about often—pulling the trigger and leaving your home country to sit out an economic or political crisis.

Nick Giambruno: It seems like each week there’s a new attack or mass shooting. Racial tensions are on the rise. Europe is experiencing a migrant crisis that’s tearing the continent apart.

There’s no doubt the world has become a crazier place in the past couple of years. Unfortunately, I think it’s only going to get worse.

At what point do you decide that conditions at home are likely to worsen and set up an escape route with the intention of moving to another country?

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Support for Hard Brexit in the UK Hardens

By Don Quijones – Re-Blogged From WOLF STREET.

“Significant economic damage” is a “price worth paying.” But businesses are not so sure.

Europhiles hoping that time might heal or at least narrow the rift separating the UK and the EU after last year’s Brexit vote are likely to be sorely disappointed by the findings of a new poll jointly conducted by Oxford University and London School of Economics.

The survey reveals that there is more support for harder Brexit options because Leavers and a substantial number of Remainers back them. The survey’s findings bolster the case for the hard-Brexit-or-nothing position favored (at least publicly) by British Prime Minister Theresa May. The alternative — a so-called “soft” Brexit — would imply having to accept full freedom of movement for all EU citizens in return for some form of privileged access to the single market. Given that regaining control of UK borders was one of the key issues that swung the referendum in Brexit’s favor, such a proposition was always unlikely to sway a majority of British voters.

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Irish Negotiations on Brexit

Re-Blogged From Stratfor

When Irish politicians from both sides of the border met on Aug. 4 to discuss the consequences of Brexit on Northern Ireland there were at least some areas of agreement. Both the Republic and the province would, ideally, like to preserve the free movement of people and goods across the border once the United Kingdom leaves the European Union. However, as is so often the case, views within the province are divided. While nationalists in Northern Ireland give high priority to the open border with the Republic, unionist politicians want to find a balance between minimizing the disruptions created by Brexit and making sure that Northern Ireland remains a part of the United Kingdom.

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Follow The Money

By Alasdair Macleod – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-Phoenix500.com

Since 2009, equities and other financial assets have climbed a wall of worry. Initially, it was recovery from the threat of a complete financial collapse, before the Fed saved the system once again. Systemic collapse continued to be on the cards, with European banks at risk of bankruptcy. We still talk about this today. More walls of worry to climb.

The global economy has not imploded, as the bears have consistently warned. Systemic and other dangers still exist. The bears now point to excessive valuations as the reason for staying out of the market. But this misses the point: the general level of asset valuations depends not on fundamentals, but on credit flows. It matters not whether there is cash sitting on the side-lines, or whether speculators borrow to invest, so long as the credit keeps flowing into financial assets. Just follow the money.

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