By David Middleton – Re-Blogged From WUWT
USGS Estimates 214 trillion Cubic Feet of Natural Gas in Appalachian Basin Formations
Release Date: OCTOBER 3, 2019
The Marcellus Shale and Point Pleasant-Utica Shale formations of the Appalachian Basin contain an estimated mean of 214 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered, technically recoverable continuous resources of natural gas, according to new USGS assessments.
“Watching our estimates for the Marcellus rise from 2 trillion to 84 trillion to 97 trillion in under 20 years demonstrates the effects American ingenuity and new technology can have,” said USGS Director Jim Reilly. “Knowing where these resources are located and how much exists is crucial to ensuring our nation’s energy independence.”
1. It is led by institutions and funds, not private investors. Global quantitative easing created a huge and mobile pool of capital in constant need of a place to call home. As the need for a safe haven became apparent among the stewards of that capital, the demand for gold flourished. The consistent presence of funds and institutions as buyers in this rally, as represented by the growth in ETF stockpiles, is one of its hallmarks and represents one of the major differences between this gold rally and rallies of the past. Though private investors have been late to the game, the rapid development of the physical market for gold coins and bullion in the United Kingdom is testament to the fact that sentiment can change quickly.
2. Day-to-day price reversals often originate in Asia and Europe, not just the United States. For decades, the U.S. commodity markets set the tone for gold pricing and the rest of the world was content to follow. Even the old London price fix tended to follow along with trends established in the United States. That all changed when the Shanghai gold market began offering its own pricing mechanism and the effects of Brexit began to have a profound impact on both sides of the English Channel. Now, price reversals often begin in Asian or European markets overnight and carry over to the open in New York rather than the other way around. All of this is a reflection of ramped up global investor interest in gold and a leveling of the playing field in terms of who and what influences the price on a daily basis. As such, it comprises our second important difference between the current gold price rally and rallies in the past.
Washington- U.S. Representative Alex Mooney (R-WV) introduced legislation this week to provide for the first audit of United States gold reserves since the Eisenhower Administration.
The Gold Reserve Transparency Act (H.R. 2559) – backed by the Sound Money Defense League and government accountability advocates – directs the Comptroller of the United States to conduct a “full assay, inventory, and audit of all gold reserves, including any gold in ‘deep storage,’ of the United States at the place or places where such reserves are kept.”
HR 2559 requires more than just a physical assay, inventory, and audit, however. Even if all United States gold can be physically accounted for, it may nevertheless be encumbered with third-party obligations – or otherwise be impaired by bank financialization.
By David Middleton – Re-Blogged From WUWT
The plots of the Seinfeld TV show often revolved around trivializing important things and blowing trivial things out of proportion. While not a Seinfeld fanatic (I’m more of a Frasier fanatic), I thought the comedy routines were generally brilliant and quite effective.
Peak Oil, abiotic oil and EROEI (energy returned on energy invested) are largely academic concepts. They are the subject of books, academic publications and Internet “debates” The “debates” about Peak Oil, abiotic oil and EROEI are a lot like the Seinfeld show. They magnify the trivial and trivialize things that actually matter. The “debates” often divide into two camps:
- It’s the end of the world (Peak Oil, EROEI).
- It’s our salvation from the end of the world (Abiotic oil).
We had been observing the evolution of the total of Central Bank Monetary Reserves for several years, and noted a peak on August 2, 2014, when these Reserves reached a maximum of the equivalent of $12.032 Trillion dollars, according to Bloomberg.
As of April, 2019, a review of Central Bank Monetary Reserves, according to Bloomberg, yields some interesting information.
In August 2014, the dollar amount of CB Monetary Reserves was, as we just said, $12.032 Trillion dollars, and as of April 19, 2019, CB Monetary Reserves had fallen by $479 Billion dollars, to $11.553 Trillion dollars.
China increased its gold reserves for a third straight month in February, data from the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) showed this morning.
The value of China’s gold reserves rose slightly to $79.498 billion in February from $79.319 billion at the end of January, as the central bank increased the total amount of gold reserves to 60.260 million fine troy ounces from 59.940 million troy ounces.
By Jeff Clark – Re-Blogged From Gold Eagle
I read a mainstream report about a decline in gold imports into Hong Kong, with the journalist concluding that gold demand in China is therefore down.
The interesting thing about the article is that the figures stated were accurate; Hong Kong imports into China are down. But here’s the thing: the message is wrong. It’s incomplete, misleading, and as I show below, misses the forest for the trees on what’s really happening with gold inside China. If an investor makes a decision because of that article, they may not be basing it on false raw information, but on an entirely faulty conclusion.
By Bloomberg – Re-Blogged From Newsmax
Russia is rethinking what counts as a haven asset as it duels with the U.S.
Although investors usually seek safety in U.S. debt, Russia cut its holdings of Treasuries nearly in half in April as Washington slapped the harshest sanctions to date on a selection of Russian companies and individuals. In a shift Danske Bank A/S attributed to a deepening “geopolitical standoff,” Russia is instead keeping up its purchases of gold.
By Mark O’Byrne – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com
– Bundesbank has completed a transfer of gold worth €24B from France and U.S.
– Germany has completed domestic gold storage plan 3 years ahead of schedule
– In the €7.7 million plan, 54,000 gold bars were shipped and audited
– In 2012 German court called for inspection of Germany’s foreign gold holdings
– Decision to repatriate from Paris and New York was ‘to build trust and confidence domestically’
– 1,236t or 37% of German holdings remain in New York Fed facility
– Bundesbank wants to hold gold bullion
– U.S. government declines to audit gold reserves … doesn’t want world to realise gold’s importance in the global monetary system
[I just read an article on www.Silver-Phoenix500.com, by Ellen Brown, talking about the FED’s latest Rate Hike Cyle. I was going to add a comment to her post, but there is just so much wrong with what she says, that a simple comment won’t do. -Bob]
Ellen Brown discusses the FED’s current Rate Hike Cycle, giving reasons why it’s a bad idea. She says that higher rates will draw foreign money into the US and strengthen the Dollar, which will hurt US exports and increase imports. That indeed may be the case, but only because foreign Central Banks’ policies keep their interest rates near zero percent.
To the extent that stiffer competition and higher borrowing costs will hurt US businesses, then yes, US GDP will suffer. Considering that the FED has kept rates FAR under Free Market rates, creating bubbles in stocks and other areas of the US Economy, a market crash together with a Recession/Depression should not be unexpected outcomes.
Brown goes on to suggest that higher rates and a contracting Economy will cost the Republicans dearly in November 2018, and that also is a reasonable prediction.
Alas, after that, Brown’s logic and understanding get very cloudy. She wonders why the FED, seeing a slowing Economy ahead, would go ahead and raise rates, but she misses the obvious. The FED is a Keynesian organization, which makes them Democrats. A market and Economic crash while the Republicans are in charge will favor the Democrats at election time.
She says that interest paid by Uncle Sam and by corporations will triple in short order. But she just doesn’t get borrowing. When you borrow to buy a house using a fixed rate mortgage, if rates go up in the Economy, do you pay more? Of course not! The US and corporations’ borrowings mostly are long term using bonds of various durations.
Yes, rates will go up when you roll over your debt (or borrow more), but that very real problem doesn’t happen today – it creeps in over time. Now, to the extent that the borrowing was to fund spending that only made sense with zero interest rates, that rolled-over increase in debt due to bad decision making will clear away the incompetent leaders in business and will force government spending cuts. It could be very painful, but the pruning needs to be done occasionally.
Brown doesn’t want the adjustment process ever to be done, so she wants the FED to keep doing what it did (low interest rates). Even more, she wants the FED to monetize the entire federal debt (that the FED doesn’t already own).
She says that the new money, created out of thin air, will get into the banks and will be deposited by the banks as excess reserves – and that these excess reserves cannot be lent out by the banks. Her ignorance is staggering!
So, let’s review the concept of bank reserves. The FED says that banks MUST keep some of its deposits in ‘reserve,’ for use in regular day to day business and in case depositors (as a whole group) want to withdraw an unusually large amount from the bank. The ‘Required Reserves’ are not required on all bank deposits – far from it – but for the sake of this discussion, let’s assume that Brown at least has this right.
The Required Reserves are not available to lend out because… they are required. However, a bank may deposit more than the required reserve amount with the FED. The deposit amount over the required amount is called ‘Excess Reserves.’ While Excess Reserves indeed are available for the bank to lend out (contrary to what Brown thinks), the FED has been discouraging this extra lending by paying the banks about 1% to keep the Excess Reserves on deposit at the FED.
With the FED’s, and the government’s, policies keeping GDP in the toilet for a decade, banks have a limited demand for creditworthy, likely profitable loans, so banks have left a lot of Excess Reserves (in addition to their Required Reserves) on deposit with the FED, earning that 1% return. This is what the FED has referred to as sanitizing all the paper money it’s been creating to buy that ton of Treasuries.
If interest rates are raised by the FED, banks can be expected to start loaning out those Trillions of Excess Reserves. With the Fractional Reserve Banking system that the US has, those Trillions of Excess Reserves could turn into Tens of Trillions of new loans. That would cause much higher CPI increases than even the BLS statistics manipulators would be able to hide. Possibly to the point of Hyperinflation.
Brown wants the FED to create even more money out of thin air and to use it to buy up the rest of the National Debt – over $15 Trillion more! As it gets lent out (contrary to what Brown believes) that’s $150 Trillion in loans, and that definitely gets our country into Hyperinflation.
But, that’s unless the FED can prevent all that money from being lent out. While Brown’s way is nonsense, the FED does have the tool, and we’ve mentioned it already – the Required Reserve regulation. The FED could buy Treasuries and raise the percentage that banks are required to keep on hand. Instead of a 10%, it could become 10.1%, 10.2%, and growing with Treasury purchases to control lending.
A side benefit is that, the FED needn’t pay interest on Required Reserves. If the US pays an average 2% on all its debt to the FED, and then gets it all back, that’s $200 Billion savings on the current $20 Trillion National Debt.
I don’t recommend that we do this, but it is an interesting mental exercise.
By Andy May – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com
“Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future” (old Danish proverb, sometimes attributed to Niels Bohr or Yogi Berra)
In November, 2016 the USGS (United States Geological Survey) reported their assessment of the recent discovery of 20 billion barrels of oil equivalent (technically recoverable) in the Midland Basin of West Texas. About the same time IHS researcher Peter Blomquist published an estimate of 35 billion barrels. Compare these estimates with Ghawar Field in Saudi Arabia, the largest conventional oil field in the world, which contained 80 billion barrels when discovered. There is an old saying in the oil and gas exploration business “big discoveries get bigger and small discoveries get smaller.” As a retired petrophysicist who has been involved with many discoveries of all sizes, I can say this is what I’ve always seen, although I have no statistics to back the statement up. Twenty or thirty years from now when the field is mostly developed, it is very likely the estimated ultimate hydrocarbon recovery from the field will be larger than either of those estimates.
By Steve Saville – Re-Blogged From The Speculative Investor
The Fed meets to discuss its monetary policy this week. There is almost no chance that an outcome of this meeting will be another boost in the Fed Funds Rate (FFR), but there’s a decent chance that the next official rate hike will be announced in March. Regardless of when it happens and regardless of how it is portrayed in the press, the next Fed rate hike, like the two before it, will NOT imply a tightening of US monetary policy/conditions.
The two-part explanation for why hikes in the FFR no longer imply the tightening of monetary policy has been discussed many times in TSI commentaries over the past few years and was also addressed in a March-2015 post at the TSI Blog titled “Tightening without tightening“. The first part of the explanation is that with the US banking system inundated with excess reserves there is no longer an active overnight lending market for Federal Funds (banks never have to borrow Federal Funds anymore because they have far more than they require). In other words, when the Fed hikes the FFR it is hiking an interest rate that no one uses.
By Ronan Manly – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com
This article and a sequel article together chronicle a long-running investigation that has attempted, with limited success to date, to establish a number of basic details about Ireland’s official monetary gold reserves, basic details such as whether this gold is actually allocated, what type of storage contract the gold is stored under, and supporting documentation in the form of a gold bar weight list. Ireland’s gold reserves are held by the Central Bank of Ireland but are predominantly stored (supposedly) with the Bank of England in London.
At many points along the way, this investigation has been hindered and stymied by lack of cooperation from the Central Bank of Ireland and the Irish Government’s Department of Finance. Freedom of Information requests have been ignored, rejected and refused, and there has also been outright interference from the Bank of England. Many of these obstacles are featured below and in the sequel article.