Biderman Blasts Barack Obama’s Biggest Of The Big Lies

“Inherent in the nature of government itself is the fact that it is incapable of effectively providing services,” Biderman blasts, noting that “by ‘effective’, he means dollars and hours.” The TrimTabs CEO is breathless in his beration of “the biggest of the big lies,” that continues to be believed by most of America (“given their re-election of Barack Obama” he adds), that government can effectively provide services. The reality is “governments are not capable of getting anything done cost-effectively,” and Biderman, focused on Obamacare as a recent example, concludes “its all FUBAR.”

 

Some uncomfortable truths…


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/ICKh39otGUs/story01.htm Tyler Durden

Guest Post: Is RV Nation at Risk?

Submitted by Charles Hugh-Smith of OfTwoMinds blog,

A reduction in retirees' disposable income coupled with a global rise in the price of oil could crimp the assumptions underpinning RV Nation.

RV stands for "recreational vehicle," but it might also represent much of America's rural economy, which is heavily dependent on recreation and large low-mileage vehicles.

On a recent 10-day, 2,700 mile camping trip through a major chunk of the West (Northern California, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and Utah), I noticed a great many empty buildings in the small towns of the West. (This does not include the favored recreational haunts of the top 5%, of course, such as Sun Valley and Jackson Hole, which are booming.)

I also observed that much of the local economy in many areas was based on recreation: fishing, housing and feeding visitors to state and national parks, boating, etc.

Nowadays, a mainstay of these recreation-dependent sectors is the large cohort of retirees with the time and disposable income to travel. While some travel in sedans and stay at motels and inns, a significant percentage travel in large RVs and stay in RV parks or campgrounds.

In less prosperous times, for example the 1960s, most families camped in tents, as this was the most affordable way to see the Great American West. Relatively few could afford a trailer (RVs were largely unknown at the time), and most trailers were of modest size and appointment.

Nowadays, RVs are often large and luxuriously appointed–at least when compared to the modest trailers of the old days (not to mention tent camping). Pickup trucks have also grown in size and power, and an entire new class of large vehicles–SUVs–are now more common than conventional sedans in many areas.

In the conventional view, this reliance on large, low-mileage vehicles and recreational pursuits of the retired class is welcomed. After all, America's new surge of energy production means energy for low-mileage vehicles will be both abundant and cheap for decades to come, and the burgeoning class of retiring Baby Boomers will fuel an expansion of recreational travel.

I am circumspect about these rosy assumptions for a number of reasons. One is that I recall smaller, less lavish vehicles of an earlier era that consumed less fuel per passenger than today's SUVs and oversized pickups, many of which generally have one occupant, and outsized RVs, many with only two occupants.

In other words, neither recreation nor travel require high energy consumption vehicles, yet we have collectively chosen costly, high energy consumption vehicles as the default setting for all but the poor or thrifty (a vanishing breed, by the look of it). One looks in vain for small pickups of the sort that were common in the 1970s in vehicle manufacturers' offerings.

Given that much of the new-found energy is natural gas and not oil, and given the dependence of the U.S. vehicle fleet on gasoline, it seems a bit premature to assume that the current surge in domestic energy production will guarantee an abundance of cheap gasoline for decades to come.

Domestic natural gas (natty) is priced much lower than natty on the global market, but oil is priced (with some variation) globally, which means that domestic oil production will be priced on the global market, not the domestic market.

That means that any global shortage or supply disruption of oil will push prices higher in the U.S., regardless of any relative abundance of oil domestically.

Lastly, as recent entries have shown, the notion that the number of full-time workers can continue stagnating while tens of millions of additional retirees draw benefits from pay-as-you-go Social Security and Medicare is financially impossible.

A reduction in retirees' disposable income coupled with a global rise in the price of oil could crimp the assumptions underpinning RV Nation.


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/3GdHPyyYdQk/story01.htm Tyler Durden

French Unemployment Surges As Another "Technical Glitch" Crushes Hopes Of Recovery

When France released its August Jobseekers data in August, and it beat expectations dramatically reversing the trend of ongoing malaise with little to no supporting evidence of ‘why’, we were skeptical. Fast forward one month and we are almost speechless in that not only are European PMIs rolling over just as we warned but the French jobs data is totally screwed up as yet another technical glitch meant 20,000 ‘text’ messages that went unreplied were responsible for the entire improvement. French Labor Minister Michel Sapin is back tracking fast, admitting pre-emptively that “September’s data won’t be good… due to the ‘statistical incident’.” The 50k drop last month has been was bettered by a 60k rise to a new record high for French unemployment.

 

France reported a big “improvement” on unemployment in August. Now the labor minister Michel Sapin had to backtrack. Apparently a significant part of the improvement (20,000) was due to the fact that network provider SFR “forgot” to send 20 000 SMS messages. As these folks didn’t reply to the SMS, they assumed they were employed again

 

The minister is quoted :

 

“the numbers won´t be good for a very simple reason : as you know we had a statistical incident with SFR. This incident INCREASED THE DECREASE IN AUGUST BUT WILL INCREASE THE INCREASE in September”

Before…

 

August jobseekers dropped 50k to 3.2357 million… but

September entirely reverses that HOPE +60k to a new record high 3.2957 million

 

Source: Bloomberg and HuffPo

 

(h/t Nico)


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/dFgODSmpdZM/story01.htm Tyler Durden

French Unemployment Surges As Another “Technical Glitch” Crushes Hopes Of Recovery

When France released its August Jobseekers data in August, and it beat expectations dramatically reversing the trend of ongoing malaise with little to no supporting evidence of ‘why’, we were skeptical. Fast forward one month and we are almost speechless in that not only are European PMIs rolling over just as we warned but the French jobs data is totally screwed up as yet another technical glitch meant 20,000 ‘text’ messages that went unreplied were responsible for the entire improvement. French Labor Minister Michel Sapin is back tracking fast, admitting pre-emptively that “September’s data won’t be good… due to the ‘statistical incident’.” The 50k drop last month has been was bettered by a 60k rise to a new record high for French unemployment.

 

France reported a big “improvement” on unemployment in August. Now the labor minister Michel Sapin had to backtrack. Apparently a significant part of the improvement (20,000) was due to the fact that network provider SFR “forgot” to send 20 000 SMS messages. As these folks didn’t reply to the SMS, they assumed they were employed again

 

The minister is quoted :

 

“the numbers won´t be good for a very simple reason : as you know we had a statistical incident with SFR. This incident INCREASED THE DECREASE IN AUGUST BUT WILL INCREASE THE INCREASE in September”

Before…

 

August jobseekers dropped 50k to 3.2357 million… but

September entirely reverses that HOPE +60k to a new record high 3.2957 million

 

Source: Bloomberg and HuffPo

 

(h/t Nico)


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/dFgODSmpdZM/story01.htm Tyler Durden

Meanwhile, In Bitcoin…

Just last week we noted that the cryptocurrency was quietly surging towards record highs once again as the debacle in Washington, China’s comments on the USD, and Baidu’s acceptance of Bitcoins all interplayed to disrupt what many called he end of Bitcoin following the shuttering of Silk Road. Just yesterday, Bitcoin rose to almost USD235, within touching distance of April’s record high… but then this morning, it collapsed to under $175 (as its liquidity reflected NFLX not global FX). The last couple of hours have seen the price bounce back to $210, but if you like high-beta vol, then Bitcoin is the new TSLA…

The blip from Silk Road is almost invisible… as BTC rose to near record highs…

 

and then collapsed today…

 

 

Source: Bitcoin charts


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/1ksWqsd_UGI/story01.htm Tyler Durden

The REAL Reason for Saudi Arabia’s Shift Away from U.S.

Saudi Arabia has warned of a shift away from the U.S.

Here’s the real reason: China just dethroned the U.S. as the world’s largest importer of oil.

As Oil Price notes:

Last month the world witnessed a paradigm shift: China surpassed the United States as the world’s largest consumer of foreign oil, importing 6.3 million barrels per day compared to the United States’ 6.24 million. This trend is likely to continue and this gap is likely to grow, according to the EIA’s October short-term energy outlook. Wood Mackenzie, a leading global energy consultancy, echoed this prediction, estimating Chinese oil imports will rise to 9.2 million barrels per day (70% of total demand) by 2020.

World Liquid Fuels Consumption

Forget Syria, Iran and Bahrain … the stated reasons for the Saudi shift.

Those are all real … but the much bigger driver is oil. Indeed, most geopolitical policy is based upon oil (and here) and gas.

BONUS:


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/_rg-rhmcjUE/story01.htm George Washington

The Obamacare Debacle: It's Everyone Else's Fault

As the Congressional hearing, to apportion blame for the farce that Obamacare has already become, gathers steam the overwhelming theme from the four witnesses is "it's not our fault," and as much as the Congressmen dive deeply into the process, the more it is clear that the left hand had no idea what the right hand was doing in yet another government-funded SNAFU. The entire discussion can be summed up by CGI's comments that "our portion of the application worked as designed." Indeed, all of the contractors point the finger back at the government's Centers for Medicare and Medicaid as responsible for "end to end testing," and ultimately the #fail.

 

Live Coverage via C-SPAN (click image for link)

 

Written statements from the 4 contractors:

 

Via WSJ,

According to prepared testimony, CGI Federal, the lead contractor for HealthCare.gov, will say the federal agency in charge of the project was "the ultimate responsible party for the end-to-end performance of the overall" health exchange.

 

 

CGI also said its system passed eight technical reviews before going live and that problems came instead from a system designed by another contractor, UnitedHealth Group Inc 's Optum unit, which verifies users' identities. That "created a bottleneck that prevented the vast majority of users from accessing" the exchange, according to testimony of Cheryl Campbell, a senior vice president at CGI Federal.

 

 

Committee Chairman Fred Upton of Michigan  asks the contractors if they knew the site would have “crippling problems.” CGI’s Campbell says that “our portion of the application worked as designed” and repeated that “end-to-end testing was the responsibility of the (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid).”

 

“We anticipate that people will be able to enroll in the time that is allotted,” said CGI’s Campbell (which is Dec. 15 if you want insurance on Jan. 1). “As painful as it sounds, I know it’s a difficult system, but the system is working.”

 

In summation, it seems that the following sums it up all too poerfectly…

“If there was a silver bullet to answer that question, I would give it to you,” says CGI’s Campbell. “It’s the end-to-end aspect that is a challenge.”

In other words, whoever was running the overall project was asleep at the wheel…


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/bTfGiUFKDME/story01.htm Tyler Durden

The Obamacare Debacle: It’s Everyone Else’s Fault

As the Congressional hearing, to apportion blame for the farce that Obamacare has already become, gathers steam the overwhelming theme from the four witnesses is "it's not our fault," and as much as the Congressmen dive deeply into the process, the more it is clear that the left hand had no idea what the right hand was doing in yet another government-funded SNAFU. The entire discussion can be summed up by CGI's comments that "our portion of the application worked as designed." Indeed, all of the contractors point the finger back at the government's Centers for Medicare and Medicaid as responsible for "end to end testing," and ultimately the #fail.

 

Live Coverage via C-SPAN (click image for link)

 

Written statements from the 4 contractors:

 

Via WSJ,

According to prepared testimony, CGI Federal, the lead contractor for HealthCare.gov, will say the federal agency in charge of the project was "the ultimate responsible party for the end-to-end performance of the overall" health exchange.

 

 

CGI also said its system passed eight technical reviews before going live and that problems came instead from a system designed by another contractor, UnitedHealth Group Inc 's Optum unit, which verifies users' identities. That "created a bottleneck that prevented the vast majority of users from accessing" the exchange, according to testimony of Cheryl Campbell, a senior vice president at CGI Federal.

 

 

Committee Chairman Fred Upton of Michigan  asks the contractors if they knew the site would have “crippling problems.” CGI’s Campbell says that “our portion of the application worked as designed” and repeated that “end-to-end testing was the responsibility of the (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid).”

 

“We anticipate that people will be able to enroll in the time that is allotted,” said CGI’s Campbell (which is Dec. 15 if you want insurance on Jan. 1). “As painful as it sounds, I know it’s a difficult system, but the system is working.”

 

In summation, it seems that the following sums it up all too poerfectly…

“If there was a silver bullet to answer that question, I would give it to you,” says CGI’s Campbell. “It’s the end-to-end aspect that is a challenge.”

In other words, whoever was running the overall project was asleep at the wheel…


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/bTfGiUFKDME/story01.htm Tyler Durden

The Metrics That Cannot Be "Fudged" Predict 2.6% Real Annual Returns Going Forward

 

Investors need to be aware of a significant dynamic emerging in the markets.

 

That dynamic is one of corporations missing revenues estimates while beating earnings estimates.

 

The majority of investors focus on earnings when it comes to valuing the stock market or an individual stock. Indeed, Price to Earnings or P/E ratios might be the single most popular stock valuation metric in the world.

 

However, there is a danger to pricing the market based on earnings alone. Earnings can be massaged in countless ways to beat estimates. You can release loan loss reserves, massage depreciation numbers, implement one time charges or writedowns, reprice bonds, etc.

 

Indeed, a study performed by Duke University found that roughly 20% of publicly traded firms manipulate their earnings to make them appear better than they really are. The folks who were surveyed for this study about this practice were the actual CFOs at the firms themselves.

 

For this reason, when you look at the markets, you need to look at how many companies are beating sales estimates as opposed to simply earnings estimates.

 

Unfortunately the news is not particularly good for this today. As Bloomberg notes, of those companies who have reported results so far in 3Q13, only 38% of S&P 500 companies are beating revenues estimates. This follows just 46% who beat in 2Q13 and only 37% who beat in 1Q13.

 

Bloomberg notes that this is the first time there have been three consecutive quarters of less than 50% of corporations beating revenues estimates going back to 2009.

 

Moreover, taken as a whole, the market is trading at a Price to Sales ration of 1.6. Historically, before we entered the period of Fed-induced serial bubbles, the market has traded at an average of 0.8.

 

So the market is expensive. And the most sensitive economic indicator (sales) are falling and failing to beat estimates.

 

For a FREE Special Report outlining how to protect your portfolio a market collapse, swing by: http://phoenixcapitalmarketing.com/special-reports.html

 

Best

Phoenix Capital Research

 

 


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/dP0hCiX-x-o/story01.htm Phoenix Capital Research

The Metrics That Cannot Be “Fudged” Predict 2.6% Real Annual Returns Going Forward

 

Investors need to be aware of a significant dynamic emerging in the markets.

 

That dynamic is one of corporations missing revenues estimates while beating earnings estimates.

 

The majority of investors focus on earnings when it comes to valuing the stock market or an individual stock. Indeed, Price to Earnings or P/E ratios might be the single most popular stock valuation metric in the world.

 

However, there is a danger to pricing the market based on earnings alone. Earnings can be massaged in countless ways to beat estimates. You can release loan loss reserves, massage depreciation numbers, implement one time charges or writedowns, reprice bonds, etc.

 

Indeed, a study performed by Duke University found that roughly 20% of publicly traded firms manipulate their earnings to make them appear better than they really are. The folks who were surveyed for this study about this practice were the actual CFOs at the firms themselves.

 

For this reason, when you look at the markets, you need to look at how many companies are beating sales estimates as opposed to simply earnings estimates.

 

Unfortunately the news is not particularly good for this today. As Bloomberg notes, of those companies who have reported results so far in 3Q13, only 38% of S&P 500 companies are beating revenues estimates. This follows just 46% who beat in 2Q13 and only 37% who beat in 1Q13.

 

Bloomberg notes that this is the first time there have been three consecutive quarters of less than 50% of corporations beating revenues estimates going back to 2009.

 

Moreover, taken as a whole, the market is trading at a Price to Sales ration of 1.6. Historically, before we entered the period of Fed-induced serial bubbles, the market has traded at an average of 0.8.

 

So the market is expensive. And the most sensitive economic indicator (sales) are falling and failing to beat estimates.

 

For a FREE Special Report outlining how to protect your portfolio a market collapse, swing by: http://phoenixcapitalmarketing.com/special-reports.html

 

Best

Phoenix Capital Research

 

 


    



via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/dP0hCiX-x-o/story01.htm Phoenix Capital Research