04/27/17

Is Today Different?

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

A major difference in the headlines about the current advance and those that occurred in the past is the near unanimity the advance is focused in just a handful of names. Yesterday’s front page of the WSJ stated five companies contributed to 41.4% of the annual advance in the NASDAQ, an extremely narrow rally stating that such a vast concentration of wealth can create a major imbalance.

The WSJ then compared today’s technology fueled advance to the one that ended in 2000, an era where approximately 50 companies dominated. As widely known, the NASDAQ topped out in March 2000, fell about 70% and according to the WSJ, took 3,766 trading days to retrace its decline.

Returning back to the here and now, the fund flows into ETFs has been intense. As noted many times, ETFs are capitalization driven investment strategies where the big tend to get bigger and the small get smaller. In many regards ETFs indicate that past performance is indicative of future performance, a statement that is riddled with massive compliance risk.

I ask is today’s massive over performance of only five companies the result of the massive proliferation ETFs (and the total domination of the markets by technology based trading)? I think yes.

As noted the other day, many of the hedge fund and private equity luminaries are bearish, partially the result of this massive concentration of wealth into one industry and several names. Historically, and as indicated in 2000, such myopicy does not end well.

Change is the only constant. I reiterate, if Trump’s proposals become legislated, growth can exceed 3% for the first time in over a decade permitting Main Street — aka the value and small capitalized companies —to outperform Wall Street — aka the mega-capitalized growth companies — also for the first time in over a decade.

I think if Trump’s agenda is not enacted, the odds are over 50% there will be a significant decline in the averages, a decline that I believe will be primarily focused in a handful of names given massive ownership levels.

What will happen today following a relatively quiet day?

Last night the foreign markets were down. London was down 0.46%, Paris was down 0.24% and Frankfurt was down 0.17%. China was up 0.36%, Japan was down 0.19% and Hang Sang was up 0.49%.

The Dow should open flat. The 10-year is unchanged at 2.31%.

04/26/17

Why No Questions about Transgender Army Traitor?

By: Cliff Kincaid | Accuracy in Media

The most glaring omission in Tucker Carlson’s interview of the human oddity known as Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner was the failure to seek comment on the transgender traitor by the name of Bradley/Chelsea Manning. This is the former U.S. Army analyst scheduled for release from prison next month because former President Barack Obama commuted his/her sentence for Russian-style espionage.

Jenner, a former male Olympic champion, is now a spokesman for the “trans community” that includes espionage agent Bradley/Chelsea Manning. So what about Manning? What did Manning’s gender confusion and mental problems have to do with his/her espionage against the United States?

Will Manning get a “courage” award in the same way that Jenner was honored by ESPN for a biological transformation through chemicals and surgery from masculine to feminine?

We understand that the Jenner appearance on Fox News was a cheap publicity stunt, designed by Jenner to sell her new book, and for the cable channel to herald Tucker Carlson’s new show, a replacement for the “O’Reilly Factor” and its fired host, Bill O’Reilly. Still, there was an opportunity for Tucker to ask about one of the major espionage cases of our time. He blew it.

In his recent remarks at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, CIA Director Mike Pompeo described Manning essentially as an agent of Russia through his association with WikiLeaks, which functions on behalf of Russian and other anti-American interests. Pompeo said, “WikiLeaks walks like a hostile intelligence service and talks like a hostile intelligence service. It has encouraged its followers to find jobs at CIA in order to obtain intelligence. It directed Chelsea Manning in her theft of specific secret information. And it overwhelmingly focuses on the United States, while seeking support from anti-democratic countries and organizations.”

Pompeo raises more questions than he answers. How many more insider spies like Manning are there? Are the WikiLeaks followers at the CIA among the agency’s transgender work force? What, if anything, will Pompeo do to purge the questionable hires at the CIA that were made under the reign of Obama CIA director John Brennan, an advocate of “diversity” who laid out a multi-year plan to hire gays and transgenders?

Pompeo’s comments about Manning and the insider spy threat were unusual because he had been asked during his confirmation hearings by Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) about the agency’s gay and transgender employees. “You have my assurance that every employee will be treated in a way that is appropriate and equal,” Pompeo responded.

Of course, the word “appropriate” leaves the door open for dealing with traitors in the CIA in a special manner.

WikiLeaks declared “Victory” after Manning’s sentence was commuted, while former CIA/NSA analyst Edward Snowden said, “Thanks, Obama.” Snowden is a traitor who fled to Russia after disclosing classified information.

So does this mean that Obama is an agent of Russia? In this case, he is clearly serving Russian interests.

At the time of Manning’s commutation, CNN reported that WikiLeaks “is at the center of the storm over alleged Russian hacking of Democratic servers during the election, and Assange is being accused of directly subverting American democracy.”

Here was a case of Obama openly assisting a de facto Russia agent and his pro-Russian handlers. Of course, that’s not the way CNN put it. Instead, Obama had come “under intense pressure from LGBT groups that have been stalwart supporters throughout his political career to show eleventh hour compassion towards Manning,” CNN reported.

So the fact that Obama pleased the LGBT community with his “compassionate” decision makes everything all right and eliminates the need for informed speculation about Obama serving Russian interests.

Carlson should have asked Jenner about Manning’s role as a transgender hero.

Jenner, a rich reality TV star who lives in Malibu, can pay for her fancy clothes, which were on display in the Diane Sawyer special on ABC. She can pay for chemicals and surgeries to complete the “transition” to female.

It’s been different for Manning. Taxpayers have picked up the bill.

During his/her time in prison, according to The New York Times, Manning wears female prison undergarments, including a sports bra, and “subdued cosmetics.” In early 2015, the paper reported, he/she was allowed “to get speech therapy to feminize the tone and pitch of her voice and began cross-sex hormone therapy.”

These perks came about because Manning’s legal team at the ACLU sued for the benefits.

Subsequently, Obama’s Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter announced unilaterally, without Congressional input or approval, that the Pentagon would start paying for transgender surgeries for Armed Services personnel.

The situation is so extreme that West Point hosted a Transgender Day of Remembrance, organized by the Army’s Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Equal Opportunity. Judicial Watch disclosed that Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Amanda Simpson, a former test pilot named Mitchell, spoke at the event, at a cost of $1,099.92.

The Fox News publicity stunt with Caitlyn Jenner could have produced some real news, if only Carlson had asked about the Manning case and others like it. Instead, he permitted Jenner to say that she wished President Donald Trump would go further in his support for LGBT rights.

Carlson called Jenner “the world’s most famous transgender person.” This designation may not last for long.

When Manning gets out of prison in May, can we expect an appearance on “Tucker Carlson Tonight?” If Carlson is struggling to get O’Reilly-type ratings, you can bet on it.


Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected] View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.

04/26/17

An Earnings And Potential Tax Reform Fueled Advance

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

Equities advanced as corporate results and housing data bolstered optimism in the economy. There is also confidence the Trump administration will propose meaningful tax reform and continued relief over the French election. I will also write the markets are dictated by momentum traders, strategies not based on economic and security analysis, but rather by moving average lines.

I believe all markets can decline 3% to 5% in quick order if any mega-capitalized international growth company posts a disappointing profit report, the inevitable delay of the President’s legislative agenda, or a significant increase in geopolitical tensions. Additionally, I believe valuations are stretched.

On the other hand, if there is a transfer of wealth into the real economy, I believe the advance can be maintained, but with a transition from Wall Street companies to Main Street firms. Main Street will be a direct beneficiary of any regulatory and tax reform thus permitting faster job creation.

As noted many times, approximately 90% of jobs created from 1996-2007 were from small business, defined as companies with fewer than 400 employees. If Main Street again receives funding, the job creation machine will return.

Yes, there are some labor shortages in the STEM industries, however there is a vast pool of potential workers based upon the anemically low labor participation rate (LPR).

Small business creation is often funded by homes. The housing data is robust, thus suggesting a funding source is available. If monies do gravitate into the real economy and if job creation accelerates, the result of greater small business creation, perhaps a 3% to 4% growth rate is achievable.

Speaking of which, tomorrow initial estimates of first quarter GDP is released. Trump induced confidence levels have not yet translated into greater economic activity, but few of Trump’s pro-growth proposals have been enacted.

What will happen today?

Last night the foreign markets were mixed. London was down 0.10%, Paris was down 0.02% and Frankfurt was down 0.11%. China was up 0.20%, Japan was up 1.10% and Hang Sang was up 0.50%.

The Dow should open quietly lower. The 10-year is unchanged at 2.33%.

04/26/17

Oath Keepers’ Alert for Ann Coulter’s Thr. 4-27 Berkeley Speech: Come; Follow Their Lead

By: Arlen Williams | Gulag Bound

From Oath Keepers’ site, taken April 15, 2017

An Oath Keepers’ Call to Action was released on Tuesday night, April 25. It concerns the appearance of Ann Coulter at Berkeley University on the evening of this Thursday the 27th. Concerned they are, very, and they are making detailed requests of any fellow patriots planning to attend or demonstrate there.

Without a strong show of support and actual defensive potential, lives will be in danger, I concur. You know Berkeley, right? — the seedbed of the collectivists’ allegedly free speech movement, now the locus of neo-Marxist Antifa thuggery in America’s west.

Word has now gotten around that Antifa (including the San Fernando Valley’s Oak Roots Collective) is self-indicated as America’s contemporary branch of the Trotskyite movement of the same name. It was intended to be globalist from the beginning and cut its teeth in Germany’s 1930’s. There, they engaged actual fascists in violent street skirmishes and weren’t very kind to freedom lovers either. Here and now, Antifa’s fellow travelers incite them to violence with the old Bolshevik’s own charge, “Acquaint them with the pavement.”

Grab every fascist or every isolated group of fascists by their collars, acquaint them with the pavement a few times, strip them of their fascist insignia and documents, and without carrying things any further, leave them with their fright and a few good black and blue marks.

It has also been made clear in patriot media that the mayor of the City of Berkeley, Jesse Arreguin, is a member of a subversive group interoperational with this Antifa branch (BAMN, initials for By Any Means Necessary). It is run by Yvette Felarca. She teaches middle school. Good morning, Ms. Felarca. At a very recent protest, one reporter observed that while Berkeley cops did not step in to separate Antifa from pro-Trump demonstrators, they became very engaged when the latter came near Felarca.

This apparently answers the question of why, time after time, the Berkley Police have been ordered to stand away, instead of keeping Antifa and the pro-American demonstrators separated (video, example). They have allowed numerous people be injured, some requiring medical treatment. In a normal state, the governor would assign its National Guard, if the local government and its police department were not protecting the innocent. But this governor is Jerry Brown (D). At least one video researcher suspects police actually fired a concussion grenade into a mixed and argumentative crowd at the April 15 skirmish. The explosion in question apparently raised emotions further, immediately provoking a violent outburst (video). Such is the kind of suspicion that arises when subversion is observed.

Coming to the rescue, Oath Keepers and the Three Percenters are patriotic organizations consisting of former law enforcement officers and members of our United States Armed Services. They make it clear they are preparing for engagement, should it become necessary to protect the peaceful from harm. It is essential that pro-free speech demonstrators at Thursday’s event submit to their leadership, do what they say, just how they say, without exception. Violence of this kind tends to escalate with repeated events, especially when the promise of mass media spectacle also escalates. With Ms. Coulter setting foot on the grounds, that is assured.

Are you a local and will you be there to show your support? Remember, the whole world will be watching.

Without excerpting Oath Keeper’s bulletin, you may find it here:

CALL TO ACTION: ALERT! You are Needed to Protect Ann Coulter Speech this Thurs, April 27 in Berkeley! – Oath Keepers

Time to Stand Again in Defense of Free Speech [NOTE: This is for those within driving range. See detailed note below] Oath Keepers and patriots, NEW MISSION. ANN COULTER SPEECH, APRIL 27, BERKELEY, CA It is now confirmed that Ann Coulter will indeed speak in Berkeley California on Thursday afternoon, April 27.

Gulag Bound and our daily, The Globe and Malevolence will keep you apprised. Personally, I suggest a word of prayer.

In Twitter: @ArlenWms, @GulagBound

04/25/17

New York Times Misses the Mark on Hillary’s Defeat

By: Roger Aronoff | Accuracy in Media

The New York Times recently published a lengthy postmortem on the effects that the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails and the bureau’s investigation into Donald Trump’s alleged ties to Russia had on the 2016 election. The paper casts blame because FBI Director James Comey went public with the Clinton investigation, but didn’t expose the Trump inquiry during the election.

“For all the attention on Mrs. Clinton’s emails, history is likely to see Russian influence as the more significant story of the 2016 election,” concludes the Times. “Questions about Russian meddling and possible collusion have marred Mr. Trump’s first 100 days in the White House…Despite Mr. Trump’s assertions that ‘Russia is fake news,’ the White House has been unable to escape its shadow.”

The media, and many Democrats, continue to speak of collusion between Trump associates and Russia that may have influenced the outcome of last year’s presidential election. Yet we have reported at length about how thin the evidence is for this theory.

New polling, however, shows that Trump would win the election even now, despite a low approval rating. The Washington Post, describing its ABC/Post poll, reports, “Asked how they would vote if the election were held today, 43 [percent] say they would support Trump and 40 percent say Clinton.” Of course, the Post buried this deep into an article which discusses Trump’s disapproval rating, titled, “Nearing 100 days, Trump’s approval at record lows but his base is holding.”

ABC’s Jonathan Karl was more honest, tweeting out, “According to the ABC/WP poll, among 2016 voters,[email protected] beat Hillary Clinton in a rematch—in the popular vote, no less.” This is really quite remarkable, given the round-the-clock, unremitting hostility toward Trump, not just in nearly every news story and from journalists on nearly every network, but also from The Washington Post and New York Times. Every late-night talk and comedy show is beyond brutal to Trump and his family, as are many of the scripted primetime shows.

The only TV network where Trump is not the object of such hostility is Fox News, where several journalists support Trump, others are neutral, and some are hostile, like Shepard Smith. Talk radio and some of the conservative newspapers, e.g. The Washington Times and Washington Examiner, are at least balanced in their coverage of Trump, and in some cases very supportive.

That the Russians somehow skewed the election outcome is nonsense. Despite endless reporting about baseless allegations of collusion, voters would, if the polls can be believed, vote for, and elect, Trump again. The real interference was run by White House lackeys like Attorney General Loretta Lynch and the mainstream media.

What the Times reporters are missing is that their reporting reveals how Lynch was playing politics, passionately trying to downplay the Clinton investigation. “At the meeting, everyone agreed that Mr. Comey should not reveal details about the Clinton investigation,” reports the Times. “But Ms. Lynch told him to be even more circumspect: Do not even call it an investigation, she said, according to three people who attended the meeting. Call it a ‘matter.’”

“It was a by-the-book decision,” reports the Times. “But Mr. Comey and other F.B.I. officials regarded it as disingenuous in an investigation that was so widely known.”

Some have also argued that Lynch openly played favorites when Bill Clinton boarded her plane at the Phoenix airport in what the Times matter-of-factly calls a “chance encounter.” It was just days before Comey’s scheduled interview with Mrs. Clinton over the Fourth of July weekend, and added to the appearance that the fix was in. Bill Clinton had appointed Lynch to her position as U.S. Attorney when he was president, and it was reported that a message from the Clinton camp was sent to Ms. Lynch via The New York Times that she would be getting strong consideration to stay on as attorney general in a Hillary Clinton administration.

As for when Comey signaled to Congress that the investigation into Clinton’s emails had been reopened, less than two weeks before the election, the Times reports that “In a series of phone calls, her [Lynch’s] aides told Mr. Comey’s deputies that there was no need to tell Congress anything until agents knew what the emails contained.”

The Times also contends that Russian hackers stole a document which cast doubt on Lynch’s impartiality. “The Times’ investigative report suggests that a U.S. intelligence agency managed to intercept some of what Russian hackers were stealing,” reports Breitbart, continuing “and that one document, ‘described as both a memo and an email, was written by a Democratic operative who expressed confidence that Ms. Lynch would keep the Clinton investigation from going too far.’”

But it was Obama administration officials, specifically the White House, who told Comey not to publish an op-ed about Russian interference in the election because they were waiting for the intelligence agencies to produce a “formal intelligence assessment,” the Times reports.

For all the accusations that Comey was too aggressive in his investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s reckless handling of classified material, often referred to as her “email scandal,” he made the case for her prosecution, and then recommended against it, saying that “no reasonable prosecutor” would pursue this case. And the Department of Justice granted immunity to key persons in the case such as Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson, who received that deal in exchange for access to their private laptops.

Mrs. Clinton blamed her electoral loss on Comey’s interference: “Just as we were back up on the upward trajectory, the second letter from Comey essentially doing what we knew it would—saying there was no there there—was a real motivator for Trump’s voters,” she said last November.

But the new Post/ABC News poll demonstrates that Trump, despite low favorability ratings, would be elected again today—by a greater margin. “When asked if they would vote for him again, 96 percent say they would, which is higher than the 85 percent of Hillary Clinton voters who say they would support her again,” reports the Post.

The media have done everything they can to damage the Trump presidency, and they did everything they could to ensure—and predict—a Clinton win. Yet the voters conclude that they would vote for Trump. There is no way to spin this. The media, and Democrats, lost in November for any number of reasons, including their own incompetence and misunderstanding of the American people—not Comey’s actions or a Russian influence operation.


Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi. He can be contacted at [email protected]. View the complete archives from Roger Aronoff.

04/25/17

Will The Unthinkable Occur?

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

In the early 1980s, during an “Introduction to Political Science Class,” I was introduced to the concept that there are generational geopolitical/sociological changes every 35-40 years. I vividly recall discussing LBJ’s “Great Society” programs, the social angst of the Vietnam War, the nascent rise of globalism and the beginning of the close collusion between big government and big business and how such commenced a new era of activist and redistributionist government.

The professor stated these trends stay in place until there is some finale equivalent to the conclusion of a Fourth of July fireworks display where the current trend goes on steroids believing the status quo is all knowing and powerful. Radical change then occurs.

I believe I live in the congressional district that commenced the battle against the Establishment. David Brat defeated House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in a primary, a primary that Cantor all but dismissed as meaningless and unthreatening.

This was first time that a major leader was defeated in a primary since the late 1800s. Brat won because Cantor’s constituents — one of which is me — believed that Cantor lost contact with the electorate. That Cantor was all about himself and the perpetuation of the Establishment.

The professor dogmatically stated these changes will occur, not questioning as to if, but rather as to when.

Fast forward to today. Brexit. Trump. Italy. And now France.

For the first time in many generations, a candidate from a major political party is not in contention for France’s presidency. This would be equivalent to neither a Republican or a Democratic candidate being a candidate for the US Presidency.

On May 7th, France’s citizenry is faced with a dichotomy. The choice is a far right populist, who espouses economic nationalism and “Frexit,” or a moderate who supports closer ties to the EU. Neither candidate is from a national party and the moderate is a political neophyte who most thought had little chance of succeeding to the “finals” as little as 60 days ago.

In other words, a strong argument can be made the survival of “The Federation” is at hand. There is a clear battle between a commitment to dramatically changing the current economic system or one to maintain the existing structure.

To write the obvious, the entire Establishment is supporting the moderate and at this juncture is projected to win by a considerable margin.

Will Le Penn do the unthinkable and win?

Why the attention on this election? Today’s financial system is predicated upon globalism. The top performing equity issues are mega capitalized global growth issues, a term that I find oxymoronic. According to Bespoke Investment Corporation, the concentration of wealth into a handful of mega sized global growth companies is unprecedented. What happens if globalism dies an inglorious death in 2 weeks?

Perhaps the only certainty to write is that regardless who is France’s next president, today is radically different than yesterday. The electorate is speaking very loudly and it is very anti-Establishment.

Equities advanced on the French election with many declaring that Le Penn will lose by a wide margin. I think I wrote these same words in late June 2016 referencing Brexit.

Last night the foreign markets were up. London was up 0.26%, Paris was up 0.38% and Frankfurt was up 0.03%. China was up 0.16%, Japan was up 1.08% and Hang Sang was up 1.31%.

The Dow should open nominally higher, perhaps the result of tax reform optimism. The 10-year is off 8/32 to yield 2.31%.

04/25/17

WATCH TRAILER: COMING APRIL 28: #AmericaUnderSiege: Soviet Islam (video)

By: Renee Nal | New Zeal

The next episode in Capital Research Center’s five-part “America Under Siege” webseries, “Soviet Islam,” releases April 28th on its YouTube channel and DangerousDocumentaries.com.

The film uncovers the secret history of how the Soviet Union used Islamists and dictators in the Middle East to further its objectives and how Vladimir Putin’s Russia continues this strategy today, endangering Americans and all freedom-loving peoples.

After World War II, the Soviet Union used Muslim intelligence assets to subvert neighboring Muslim-majority nations. Putin’s Russia continues to infiltrate Islamic communities around the world, including Chechnya, Iran, Syria and Palestine, and also at home in the United States, where Islamists and communists have joined in an unlikely alliance.

The film is narrated and written by conservative author Trevor Loudon, directed by Judd Saul and produced by Cohesion Films in partnership with Dangerous Documentaries (a project of the Capital Research Center). (Bombthrowers, too, is a project of Capital Research Center.)

The first film in our “America Under Siege” webseries, “Civil War 2017,” is available to view here.

Cross-posted from Bombthrowers.

04/24/17

The Denise Simon Experience – 04/20/17

The Denise Simon Experience

Hosted by DENISE SIMON, the Senior Research / Intelligence Analyst for Foreign and Domestic Policy for numerous flag officers and intelligence organizations.

THIS WEEK’S GUESTS:  KEN BUCK  /  RACHEL REED  /  TONY FRANCOIS

BROADCAST WORLDWIDE:

THURSDAYS:  9:00PM (eastern) on:

WJHC – Talk 107.5FM
WDDQ – Talk 92.1FM
WLBB – News Talk 1330AM

And on her Digital Flagship Station:   RED NATION RISING RADIO  –  The NEW Dominant Force in Conservative Talk Radio

#RedNationRising #Radio

04/24/17

The March to War? Entire US Senate Called to White House for North Korea Briefing [VIDEO]

By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton | I Have The Truth

Just when you thought the whole North Korea debacle was stagnating, things unfortunately got interesting this weekend. The first thing that happened is we found out that the US is sending 1,250 Marines to Australia. The North Koreans are claiming that we are staging our troops there for an invasion of the Hermit Kingdom. They are threatening to hit Sydney with nukes. I kind of doubt that they can, but who knows? As regional tensions escalate and a US carrier strike group approaches the Korean peninsula, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said the secretive regime “must be stopped” as it represented a threat to the region and, potentially, globally. The NoKos have also threatened the USS Carl Vinson, vowing to strike and sink it.

But wait… there is much more afoot. China ostensibly cut off North Korea’s oil and gas supplies this weekend. Gas prices rose by 85% there and all gas stations were shuttered. Then China froze and disabled all Chinese ATMs in the country. How do you spell panic? There’s more you aren’t hearing out there. President Trump called both China and Japan last night. No reason or transcript has been released. Chinese president Xi Jinping released a statement afterwards that said China opposed any actions that went against UN security council resolutions, as Japan confirmed it was joining drills with the strike group led by the USS Carl Vinson that is headed to Korean waters.

Rodong Sinmun, the official paper of the Worker’s Party of North Korea, highlighted the US Marines arrival in northern Australia on April 18th. The Marines will be joined by 12 military helicopters including five Cobra helicopters and four Osprey carriers. “This is the largest scale US military presence in Australia after World War 2,” the newspaper reported on Monday. Tomorrow is a another holiday for North Korea and America is watching to see if missiles are launched or a nuke is tested. Either will be seen as a provocation to war. U.S. commercial satellite images indicated increased activity around North Korea’s nuclear test site, while Kim has said that the country’s preparation for an ICBM launch is in its “final stage.” South Korea has said that something could now happen at any time.

From Fox News:

The entire U.S. Senate has been invited to the White House for a briefing Wednesday on the North Korea situation, amid escalating tensions over the country’s missile tests and bellicose rhetoric.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer confirmed the upcoming briefing, for all 100 senators, on Monday.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats plan to provide the update to lawmakers.

It is rare for the entire Senate to be invited to such a briefing.

Spicer clarified that while the event will take place on the White House campus, it is technically a Senate briefing and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is the one who convened it.

The briefing, first reported by Reuters, was confirmed after President Trump earlier spoke to the leaders of both China and Japan.

A rare briefing will be held Wednesday to brief all 100 Senators at the White House. Mitch McConnell will chair the briefing as Majority Leader. The President himself has called this meeting along with his military leaders. Some say it is for sanctions against the NoKos, but that would be overkill. These types of briefings are called when a President is seeking permission to go to war. Whether that is what this is or not is yet to be seen. A similar briefing of all House members is also being arranged.

All 100 senators have been asked to the White House for the briefing by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and General Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the aides said. I don’t know about you, but the war drums just got deafening over here. The briefing will be at 3 pm EST. Tensions over North Korea have been escalating higher and higher over the last couple of weeks. It looks like we may be getting ready to dance after all.


04/24/17

Possible Reasons For Hedge Fund Bearishness

By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

More and more high profile hedge fund managers are warning about stock valuations. The reason for the concern is the breakdown of globalism, the concentration of wealth in a handful of companies, rising interest rates that will impact valuations, especially those issues trading at huge multiples, rising input prices that may not be able to be passed onto the end user and rising wages.

There is also rising concern about “portfolio insurance,” the domination of moving average lines to make instantaneous trading decisions and the total capitalization of the S & P 500 as compared to the size of the economy.

Those who are cynical are perhaps thinking current hedge fund bearishness could be the result of the lack of performance as compared to the benchmarks. The last major era of hedge fund out performance ended in 2007.

Passive portfolio management via ETFs has dominated since the financial crisis, a style that focuses more on size rather macroeconomic and geopolitical analysis.

I ask however if the change in today’s environment is indeed tectonic via the collapse of globalism, should this not create a more bullish environment for hedge funds that utilize an overriding thesis and research, thus becoming significant?

Several weeks ago, I noted the collapse of the security research industry, the result of the proliferation and domination of passive ETFs. Some believe such a collapse has created an opportunity for those firms that still follow trends and companies. This group believes the ETF/mega capitalization trade has become very crowded. When anything becomes this crowded, the next path is typically down.

The question at hand is if this trade collapses, what happens to all other issues?

I will argue it depends upon tax and regulatory reform. If reform occurs, such reform will directly benefit “The Main Street Issues” versus “The Wall Street Issues” for a myriad of reasons.

What will happen this week? Earnings season accelerates. The economic calendar is comprised of several regional manufacturing indices, consumer confidence, trade and more housing data, inventories and initial estimates of first quarter GDP.

Last night the foreign markets were up. London was up 1.72%, Paris was up 4.51% and Frankfurt was up 3.0%. China was down 1.37%, Japan was up 1.37% and Hang Sang was up 0.41%.

The Dow should open sharply higher on the results of the French election. The populist Le Penn is thought not to have a chance against the centralist Macron, a person she is casting as an oligarch. The election is on May 7th. The 10-year is off 15/32 to yield 2.31%.