The pirate ship Whydah (pronounced “WID-uh) first launched as a slave ship in 1715 in England as a square-rigged three-masted galley ship which means it was fitted with rowing stations on both sides of the ship. On its second voyage the ship was commandeered by the pirate “Black” Sam Bellamy so called for tying his black hair back in a ponytail. Black Sam was also known as the “Prince of Pirates” because of his mercy and generosity and today is … Read More »
Known as one of the “white whales” in coin collecting circles because it is so rare, a 1880 $4.00 Coiled Hair Stella sold at auction for $2.75 million in Los Angeles recently. Unlike the Morgan silver dollar, the $4.00 Coiled Hair Stella is one of the many “pattern” coins designed by George T. Morgan, which were never meant for circulation and contains six grams of pure gold alloyed with silver and copper into what is called “goloid.” The coin features … Read More »
There has been some major economic disappointment for at least two members of the Federal Reserve. It seems our economy has been stuck somewhere between low gear and reverse for far too long. So think New York Fed President William Dudley and Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart. In a foreboding question Mr. Lockhart asked at a leadership summit in New York, “Is America losing its economic mojo?” In response to his own question he stated, “There is some evidence to … Read More »
Reminiscent of an episode of “Lost In Space” the Congressional Budget Office has issued the alert “Warning, Will Robinson, Warning!” In this version, you and I are Will Robinson and collectively we make up a very large life form. The advisory on the long-term national budget came out Tuesday, September 17, 2013 and signaled that the national debt was an astounding 73% of the gross domestic product (GDP). This is twice as high as it was in 2007. Our budgetary … Read More »
Without trying to be ominous, a survey released on Friday the 13th (cue the thunder) indicated that consumer sentiment dropped to the lowest level since April of this year. It appears Americans are concerned about higher interest rates and the impact that will have on housing as well as growth in general. In the words of the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan’s survey director, Richard Curtin, the drop was due to “growing concerns that higher interest rates will diminish the pace … Read More »
This week – September 9-15 – USA Today is doing a multi-part series looking back at the banking crisis and stock market collapse of 2008. They ask several questions such as, “Could it happen again?”, and “What exactly happened?” The writers so far have done a keen job of tracing back to root causes of the domino-like collapse of America’s largest banks, International Insurance companies, and a Dow that dropped by more than 50%. As far as answering the … Read More »
This week – September 9-15 – USA Today is doing a multi-part series looking back at the banking crisis and stock market collapse of 2008. They ask several questions such as, “Could it happen again?”, and “What exactly happened?” The writers so far have done a keen job of tracing back to root causes of the domino-like collapse of America’s largest banks, International Insurance companies, and a Dow that dropped by more than 50%.
As far as answering the “Could it happen again?” question, Author Kevin McCoy points the reader in the direction of Alistair Barr’s article entitled “Beware: Wall St. debt re-packaging machine is back” which deftly points out that the out-of control practice of leveraging debt and packaging together securities that crippled Lehman Bros and reduced AIG to a colossal beggar is once again growing out of control, but his time “More intensely”.
McCoy brings facts to bear regarding the timeline of the collapse, and it’s far reaching effects on what turned out to be a rather incestuous problem: Lehman Bros had exposure to billions of Dollars of bad debt and crumbled into bankruptcy, Merrill Lynch was not immune to the infected instruments and securities and was forced upon Bank of America like an unwanted growth. AIG had written Billions of Dollars of insurance on these now failing but far reaching financial viruses and the only one big enough to spread the bail-out ointment on the emaciated insurer was Uncle Sam. Uncle Sam was also rubbing GM with the same financial salve (read: your tax dollars) to keep it from dying off. Meanwhile, everyday Americans were raiding their savings and 401K’s as costs and interest rates climbed. More banks failed, and the Money Market Mutual Funds had to be government guaranteed after so much was drawn out of the fund by nervous investors who didn’t want to end bearing the financial brunt of Lehman’s contagious collapse.
We recall these days and events at ITM Trading vividly. It was a tricky time in precious metals investing. Gold investing and investing in silver were hot topics. The precious metals prices were not immune to the sicknesses manufactured on Wall Street and in it’s minion banks. As the markets crashed, many who were holding long positions in gold had to sell in order to cover losses they were taking in other areas, the over-abundance of sellers pushed the metals’ prices down to near or even possibly below production prices. Inventory was tight. Silver was tough to come by, and the premium over spot silver pricing was growing by what seemed like leaps and bounds. Gold bullion was hard to come by, and even the rare coins were in short supply at times. Depending on what channel you had on at what time, investing in precious metals was either the smartest or dumbest thing you could do.
If hindsight is 20/20 the look back over the last 5 years casts some keen insights. Not only did gold and silver bounce of their lows and each respectively surpass their previous all time highs, they went on to outperform many analysts’ calls. Silver peaked at around $50 an ounce and today, at $24, has solidly rebounded from the $16 range that it fell from during the crash.
Gold performed similarly. Gold’s all time high pre-crash was about $1000 an ounce. Its bottom during the crash was about $750 an ounce. Gold then streaked to $1900 an ounce before pulling back to the current $1365 /oz. level.
There are plenty of people who lost it all in the market collapse of ’08. If you were holding Lehman shares, Citi stock, GM shares, or AIG certificates you can relate firsthand. Conversely, even if you bought in at the top of pre-crash precious metals pricing ($16 silver and $1000 gold) then you had a wild ride, but as long as you held onto your position, you ended up doing just fine. If you bought in at the lows of $8 silver and $750 gold you look like a financial genius.
If there is a lesson to be learned from these articles, may I suggest it be this: There will be another collapse. Those in power over the markets and banks haven’t changed. They are still greedy and not particularly brilliant. This time the Boom will be more catastrophic and further reaching. The losers will lose more and the winners will win big again. Take the opportunity to call ITM Trading at 1.888.OWN.GOLD and discuss your opportunity to come out on the right side of the coming 2nd round of a 2008 style stock market / banking instrument collapse.
“Stockholders will get nothing ….and unsecured creditors will be at risk.” – Paul Volker
In an area near the southern wall of Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, known as the Ophel area, Dr. Eilat Mazar has uncovered two caches of valuable gold coins, silver jewelry and a gold medallion containing a symbol of a Menorah. Characterizing the event as “a breathtaking, once-in-a-lifetime discovery,” Dr. Mazar declared: “We have been making significant finds from the First Temple Period in this area, a much earlier time in Jerusalem’s history, so discovering a golden seven-branched Menorah from the seventh … Read More »
Remember the old stories about a nickel candy bar and ten cent gasoline? My, how far we have come, and the trip has only cost us $17 Trillion. When referring to the chart below, ask yourself this question: “How can I maintain my purchasing power when these long-term trends show that the Dollar loses a substantial amount of purchasing power over time?” To discuss this in issue in-depth and develop a strategy that can work for you, call your ITM … Read More »
FROM THE DESK OF CRAIG GRIFFIN On Wednesday, September 18, 2013 the Federal Open Market Committee announced, as I thought they would, that they will not be cutting back on QE. Call it good news if you like, the markets did rally but what the Fed is really telling us is that after keeping interest rates near zero for almost five years that the economy is too weak to be taken off of life support! Make no … Read More »