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Why China’s Insatiable Appetite For Coal Has Likely Peaked

A recent report from Greenpeace found that China's coal consumption declined in the first half of this year and new Chinese government data suggests that the country's coal imports have dropped. … [Read More...]

Property Taxes

Property Rights and Property Taxes—and Countries That Don’t Have Them

This reminds me of the story of an an old sharecropper who was given the deed to a house free and clear with no mortgage.  He said he didn't want it. Instead he wanted a mortgage. When asked why he … [Read More...]

Freedom of the Press

U.S. Press Freedom Declines According to Report

For the fourth year in a row, Finland ranked No.1 in press freedom, as ranked in the 2014 World Press Freedom Index compiled by Reporters Without Borders. While Finland set the gold-standard for press … [Read More...]

Latest Financial Trends

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You’d Better Hope The U.S. Government Likes What You Do For A Living

It seems like almost daily we are hearing of more and more government encroachment on our freedom and liberty, whether it is the IRS targeting certain groups or NSA evesdropping on private conversations or even passing around "captured" pictures but today we are going … [Read More...]

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Why The Debate Over Energy Storage Utterly Misses The Point

The debate over which energy storage technology will prove to be the best in the long-term is woefully misguided. Many technologies have been tested in the field or been fully installed, but their real-world applications have created constant questions around a … [Read More...]

Question

QE Ending Or Just Getting Started?

ECB To Step Up As Fed Steps Back? While the Federal Reserve has laid out specific plans to end their quantitative easing (QE) program, a new season of QE may be getting ready to kick-off across the pond. From Reuters: The euro fell broadly on Wednesday, hitting a … [Read More...]

Kirchner-Obama

Argentina Coming Apart at the Seams… Again

As you've probably heard Argentina has defaulted on it's Sovereign debt. This is the second time in 12 years that Argentina is defaulting. Of course the Kirchner Government is trying to blame the U.S. for their troubles by saying that it is our fault... after all, those … [Read More...]

GNP vs. GDP

GNP vs. GDP

I have often wondered what happened to the old GNP calculations. Even if you search Google you will have difficulty finding a logical explanation about the changing definition. Once upon a time, when I was growing up, Gross National Product (GNP) meant the goods and … [Read More...]

The Rock Johnson

Central Bank Smackdown

By John Mauldin Smackdown: smack•down, ?smak?doun/, noun, US informal 1.  a bitter contest or confrontation. "the age-old man versus Nature smackdown" 2.  a decisive or humiliating defeat or setback. The term “smackdown” was first used by professional … [Read More...]

Mexico Oil Production

Could Gang Violence End Mexico’s Shale Dream?

Violence in Mexico could thwart hopes of a budding shale boom, as oil and gas companies operating in Texas may think twice about moving south of the border. Mexico holds an estimated 545 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable shale gas and 13 billion barrels … [Read More...]

Ghawar Oil Field

The World’s Five Most Important Oil Fields

The world currently consumes roughly 82 million barrels of oil a day. These five oil fields produce roughly 9.5 million barrels a day with West Qurna hoping to increase production by another 2 million per day. So together they currently produce about 11% of the total … [Read More...]

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Exxon and BP Defy White House

Several of the largest oil companies in the world are doubling down in Russia despite moves by the West to isolate Russia and its economy. ExxonMobil and BP separately signed agreements with Rosneft – Russia's state-owned oil company – to extend and deepen their … [Read More...]

No Oil California

Bursting the California Shale Bubble

The great hype surrounding the advent of a shale gas bonanza in California may turn out to be just that: hype. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) – the statistical arm of the Department of Energy – has downgraded its estimate of the total amount of … [Read More...]

gazprom pipeline

Russia’s Weakened Hand Could Pay Off For Beijing In Major Gas Deal

A major gas deal between Russia and China could finally be sealed this week when Russian President Vladimir Putin visits China on May 20-21 and meets with President Xi Jinping. In the lead up to Putin's arrival, the two sides have been working on putting the finishing … [Read More...]

Panther Gunboat

How a Big Cat Started Europe’s Addiction to Oil

By Marin Katusa, Chief Energy Investment Strategist On July 1, 1911, a German gunboat named Panther sailed into the port of Agadir, Morocco, and changed history. For the previous two decades, a faction within the British Admiralty had called for the navy to switch … [Read More...]

FED Magic

Yellen’s Wand Is Running Low on Magic

The FED Thinks it has a "Magic Wand" that can boost the economy and solve all of our country's problems. But as interest rates near zero... By Doug French, Contributing Editor How important is housing to the American economy? If a 2011 SMU paper entitled … [Read More...]

Junk Bonds 101

How to Find Junk Bonds That Don’t Stink

By Andrey Dashkov, Research Analyst Riddle me this: Why would anyone ever buy junk bonds or a junk bond fund? Before we get to the answer, I would like to point something out that seems to be a given, but that astonishingly few investors think about: bonds are debt … [Read More...]

Ukraine Pipeline

Will Putin Lose His Eastern European Energy Gamble?

Russian President Vladimir Putin said he doesn't think the European community can do without the natural gas it gets from energy monopoly Gazprom. With a Russian economy starting to decline, however, it may be Gazprom that's too strongly interconnected to the European … [Read More...]

Bubble

Investors: Do You Know How We Got Here…

And Where We are Going? Policy Makers- Blowing Bubbles Again Many hard-working Americans are scratching their collective heads about the following questions: Why have stocks performed in a manner that seems to be out of step with the relatively slow pace of … [Read More...]

Interest Rates

How’s the Wealth Effect Really Doing?

Outside the Box: Hoisington Investment Management Quarterly Review and Outlook, First Quarter 2014 By John Mauldin  In today’s Outside the Box, Lacy Hunt and Van Hoisington of Hoisington Investment have the temerity to point out that since the Great Recession … [Read More...]

How's the Middle Class Doing

How is the Middle Class in the U.S. Doing? (Infographic)

Middle Class Household Income- Currently, in the United States we consider a family that has a household income of less than $100,000 to be "Middle Class". But how well are families really doing? According to the 2010 census, the median household income was $51,371. … [Read More...]

Scotland Independence

Separatist Forces Growing in Europe

Throughout Europe people are yearning to downsize their governments and bring control back to the grass-roots level. The leader in this area (with the most possibility of success) is Scotland with a referendum in September on whether to secede from the U.K or … [Read More...]

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Golden Oldies

There is an old saying, "Those who do not study the past are condemned to repeat it" and another that goes along with it which says, "History may not repeat itself but it does rhyme." Recently I came across some articles that we published quite a few years ago but I … [Read More...]