Week in Review

Quote of the week

“I have grown tired of all the fabricated and easily discredited numbers thrown out by officialdom. We are hopelessly bankrupt, and the size of the total debt and ongoing deficits is so large that the specific numbers are mostly irrelevant at this point.” – Bud Conrad

A Comeback for Gold-Backed Money?

by Andrey Dashkov

“Several legislative initiatives caught our attention recently. All of them are related to the monetary role of gold and range from proposals to return to the gold standard, to minting gold and silver as an alternative currency, to having all state transactions carried out in gold and silver coins, to permitting citizens to run their own mints.” more…

Pimco’s Gross Dumps Treasurys, and the Market Yawns

by Mark Gongloff And Min Zeng

“Mr. Gross, founder and co-chief investment officer of Newport Beach, Calif.-based Pacific Investment Management Co. has emptied Pimco’s Total Return Fund, the world’s biggest bond fund, of its U.S. government-related holdings, including Treasury debt, the company disclosed on Wednesday.” more…

The Defense Budget: Ignorance is Not Bliss

by Winslow T. Wheeler

“Polling from Pew and Gallup reveals major public misconceptions about the defense budget. Fifty-eight percent of Americans know that Pentagon spending is larger than any other nation, but almost none know it is up to seven times that of China. Most had no idea the defense budget is larger than federal spending for education, Medicare or interest on the debt.” more…

Regulars

  • The Bain Report
  • Failure Friday
  • Two failed banks this  week.
  • Amazon Best Sellers#1The 17 Day Diet: A Doctor’s Plan Designed for Rapid Results by Mike Moreno; #2Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything by Joshua Foer; #3Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back by Todd Burpo, Sonja Burpo, Colton Burpo, Lynn Vincent

And now the numbers…

DOW Jones Industrials – 12,044.40 (-125.48/-1.03%)
S&P 500 – 1,304.28 (-16.87/-1.28%)
VIX – 20.08 (+1.02/5.35%)
CSI 300 (China) – 3,247.376 (-23.29/-0.71%)
BSE 500 (India) – 6,997.96 (-92.40/-1.30%)
MICEX (Russia) – 1,719.95 (-60.67/-3.41%)
BOVESPA (Brazil) – 66,684.602 (-1,327.50/-1.95%)
Nikkei 225 (Japan) – 10,254.43 (-439.23/-4.11%)
RICI (Commodities) – 4,131.45 (-177.32/-4.12%)
Oil/bbl (Brent) – 113.84 (-2.13/-1.84%)
Corn/bu – 664.25 (-63.75/-8.76%)
Wheat/bu (CBT) – 718.75 (-113.50/-13.64%)
Rough Rice (CBOT) – 13.01 (-1.18/-8.32%)
Copper/lb – 420.75 (-27.80/-6.20%)
Gold/oz – 1,421.80 (-6.80/-0.48%)
Silver/oz – 35.935 (+0.608/1.72%)
EUR-USD – 1.3903 (-0.0084/-0.60%)
USD-JPY – 81.8445 (-0.4715/-0.57%)
USD-BRL – 1.6649 (+0.0103/0.62%)
USD-HKD – 7.7877 (-0.0013/-0.02%)
NZD-USD – 0.7427 (+0.0044/0.60%)
3 Month Treasury – 0.07 (-0.04/-36.36%)
2 Year Treasury – 0.64 (-0.04/-5.88%)
10 Year Treasury – 3.40 (-0.09/-2.58%)
30 Year Treasury – 4.55 (-0.05/-1.09%)
3 Month LIBOR – 0.31 (UNCHG)
U.S. Public Debt (official) – 14,163,433,071,135.30 (-18,653,127,921.70/-0.13%)
BPP Index – 102.7773 (+0.193/0.19%)
Baltic Dry Index (BDIY:IND) – 1,562.00 (+216.00/16.05%)

 

Well, we’re back from our travels safe and sound. We had gone out to Albuquerque last week. I spent the whole week working at the office, while Wonderful Wife and Baby Girl spent the week visiting friends. What time I had on the weekend was largely devoted to visiting with my family and my kung fu family. Sorry I was not able to get in touch with anyone else.

We took the train out and back and got to spend a little bit of time in Chicago along the way. That’s always nice, but the layover, which is just 3 hours, is never long enough to do anything super interesting. With just an hour longer layover, a trip to a museum would be very easily doable. The Institute of Art is pretty cool. We had the opportunity to tour it in January, and I would both recommend it and return for another visit. If you’re into that kind of thing…

So we got back Tuesday night light, and then it was back to work. Was back to school today. Happily, I only have classes on Friday. I’m starting up a project on named entity detection. To break that down, named entity detection is when the computer can parse through a bunch of text and extract all of the names of people, places, and organizations. Then a midterm next week, one more project, one final, one more tuition payment, and that’s it. Yay!

I’ve really taken a break from the news lately, and I suppose it has shown. I do apologize for that, but things should change this spring.

Last but not least I have added a new number to the list, the BPP Index, which is the Billions of Prices Project daily index. You can read about that here.

So that’s it for this week. Have a great weekend!

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