“The greatest transfer of wealth in the history of the world”… Boone Pickens

Exerpts from Zero Hedge, 10-24-12 –  Simon Black of SovereignMan blog

“Legendary oilman T. Boone Pickens famously calls America’s oil imports ‘the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of the world.’

Pickens is referring to the money that is paid each year to oil exporting nations, particularly those in the Persian Gulf which raked in around $100 billion last year.  No doubt, this is an enormous transfer of wealth.

But it’s a drop in the bucket compared to the TRILLIONS that Ben Bernanke gives the world’s elite.

Over the past few years, central banks have created trillions of dollars, most of which they loaned to commercial banks at 0%. The commercial banks then loaned this money to their best customers (and governments) at a slightly higher rate.

The end result is that a huge chunk of those trillions ended up in the pockets of a small handful of people. The banks and their best customers get sweetheart deals to make even more money, while the vast majority of people get screwed with inflation.

…I call this ‘philanthropy of the wealthy.’ And it starts with Mr. Bernanke.

Naturally, the average guy on the street doesn’t get these deals. Instead, he gets hit with inflation and watches his savings erode. Just this morning…

This issue isn’t about rich vs. poor….The issue lies within the system itself– that our ‘free society’ has awarded a tiny elite the supreme power to control the price of money.  And in doing so, central bankers steal purchasing power from the many and benefiting the few.

The scale of this theft is in the trillions of dollars. It constitutes, by far, the greatest transfer of wealth in history, vastly exceeding America’s energy imports.

It’s an unconscionable, immoral, ridiculous game….”

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Simon Black goes on to strongly urge the purchase of precious metals to hedge against the coming paper-based deterioration of wealth.

First and foremost, however, U.S. citizens should demand ‘equal treatment’ from the Federal Reserve – in regard to credit extensions.

American families should demand nothing less than the same opportunity for direct, zero-interest (or near ‘zero-interest) credit extensions that are routinely provided to major domestic and foreign financial institutions.

This plan would free millions of Americans from large debt burdens as they paid off mortgages and installment debt obligations.  It would jump-start economic growth, generate new tax revenues (without raising taxes).  It would breathe in new efficiencies in the purchase of health care, and reduce the ‘cost’ of government.

The Leviticus 25 Plan.

Continuing economic ‘global cooling’….

World shipping indexes are all slumping.  The Baltic Dry, Panamex, and Supramax Indices –  are all dragging along near 3 year lows.

David Rosenburg of Gluskin Sheff (excerpts):  “Global central banks have certainly been able to manipulate equity prices but they simply can’t do much to disguise the weak state of the global economy. Usually after these QEs, commodity prices would surge, but this time, what really stands out is the sharp decline in oil — down almost 10% since mid-September as a vivid sign of decelerating global demand growth.

The hallmark of Friday’s employment data was the unwillingness of companies to take on full-time staff and the low diffusion measures showing low dispersion in terms of job growth. Goods-producing employment is contracting. Monster’s employment index sank to 153 in September from 156 in August. The NFIB (National Federation of Independent Business) jobs index softened as well (-0.23 in September from -0.05 in August). According to Bloomberg, job postings in the financial sector are down 17% year-on-year. The ECRI leading economic index fell for the first time in nine weeks. And on the international front. German industrial orders slumped 1.3% in August, worse than the 0.5% decline penned in by the consensus. The German data, as bad as they were, at least looked good relative to the horrible 5.2% slide in U.S. factory orders.

And let’s face it, if the U.S. consumer was alive and well, we wouldn’t be seeing only 1.46 million square feet of strip mall net leasing activity in Q3, down sharply from 2.2 million square feet in Q2 (Reis data). Only 569,000 square feet of new space was open — according to the Investor’s Business Daily, and this was the second lowest figure since the data first began to be collected in 1999. With vacancy rates stubbornly stuck at 10.8%, rent increases have all but stagnated.”

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Small businesses employ 80% of America’s workforce.

America needs a plan that would support small businesses – and overall economic growth.  That means ‘people walking in the front door of America’s small businesses with not only a need for specific products or services, but also with discretionary funds (money) in their pockets.’

America needs a plan that will provide direct access to liquidity – targeting massive debt relief at the family level – and economic liberty.

The Leviticus 25 Plan.

2012 FDIC Reports: 43 U.S. Bank failures through October 1. The Leviticus 25 Plan would stabilize.

Despite the trillions of dollars funneled into the U.S. banking system since the fall of 2008, the banking system continues to sputter. 43 U.S. banks have failed over the first 9 months of 2012. Overall, 417 banks have failed from 2008-2011.

The two best things that could happen to the U.S. banking industry would be 1) a true, robust economic recovery – one that is re-ignited at the ground level. And  2) improved loan quality.

Leviticus 25 Plan would ignite just such a recovery: Massive debt reductions at the family level, significant new discretionary funds at the family level to support local businesses, legitimate job growth, and improving tax revenues at all levels (local, state, federal).

The Leviticus 25 Plan would also provide the means for individual citizens and business to resolve distressed loans and payment delinquencies – thereby improving the return a large sector of non-performing assets.

The combination of a revitalized economy and creditworthy customers would strengthen the overall banking system.

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More on the banks…

Yahoo Finance – Oct 1, 2012  (excerpts):  “After a week’s respite from bank failures, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation – Division of Banking – shuttered Crete, Illinois-based First United Bank last Friday. This takes the number of failed U.S. banks thus far in 2012 to 43, following 92 in 2011, 157 in 2010, 140 in 2009 and 25 in 2008.”

“While the financials of a few large banks are stabilizing on the back of an economic recovery and increasing dependence on noninterest revenue sources, the industry is still on uncertain ground. The picture that emerges from the sector is not unlike 2011, with nagging issues like depressed home prices, still-high loan defaults and unemployment levels troubling these institutions.”

“The lingering economic uncertainty and its ill effects weigh on many a bank. The need to absorb bad loans offered during the credit explosion has made these banks susceptible to myriad problems.”

“The FDIC insures deposits in 7,246 banks and savings associations in the country as well as promotes their safety and soundness. When a bank fails, the agency reimburses customer deposits of up to $250,000 per account. Though the FDIC has managed to shore up its deposit insurance fund over the last few quarters, the long spate of bank failures have kept it under pressure. However, as of June 30, 2012, the fund rose for the fifth straight quarter…. [increasing to] $22.7 billion as of June 30, 2012 from $15.3 billion” six months earlier.

“The number of banks on FDIC’s list of problem institutions saw a sharp decline for the fifth straight quarter to 732 in the April-June period from 772 in the sequentially preceding period. Increasing loan losses on commercial real estate could trigger many more bank failures in the upcoming years. However, considering the moderate pace of bank failures, the 2012 number is not expected to exceed the 2011 tally [of 92].”

October 2012 – Progress Report

The Leviticus 25 Plan has been sent to all 50 governors in the U.S. three times.  And it has been sent to all 50 state organizations of the Chamber of Commerce – along with numerous individual Chamber organizations in various cities across the U.S..

Information on the plan has been sent to numerous financial sites and commentators.

Website traffic hit a ‘heavy’ use period in June.  The hit level has moderated from June, but remains steady.

At least a dozen major multinational financial entities visit the site periodically.

There are several political connections in the Washington area.

Rosenberg: “…we saw real disposable personal income decline 0.3% in August…”

Excerpts from:   “Wealth Effect, R.I.P.”   by David Rosenberg of Gluskin-Sheff

1.  Rosenberg:  “…we saw real disposable personal income decline 0.3% in August for the largest setback of the year…. the personal savings rate is too low to kick-start spending, even if the Fed is successful in generating significant asset price inflation. The savings rate now is at a mere 3.7%, whereas it was 6% at the time of QE1 back in 2009 and over 5% at the time of QE2 2010 — in other words, there is less pent-up demand right now and a much greater need to rebuild rather than draw down the personal savings rate. This is a key obstacle even in the face of higher net worth.

2.  [On the effects of QE3] Rosenberg: “This is the first time after any major central bank incursion — QE1, QE2, Operation Twist and LTRO — that 13 (trading) days after the announcement, the stock market is lower. The S&P 500 has dropped 1% since the day of the Fed meeting whereas it was up an average of 4% at this juncture following the other four announcements.”

3.  [On ‘net worth’ ] Rosenberg:  “What is fascinating is that the rise in net worth looks fairly tenuous. Yes, home prices have risen on the back of tighter supplies but the builders have ramped up production by nearly 30% over the past year. And the first-time buyer is dormant, which means that the key source of demand in the food chain is still missing, and investor-based buying will only go so far in terms of sustaining any further home price appreciation.”

4.  [On the U.S. economy] Rosenberg:  “The pace of economic activity is weakening, with all deference to ISM. With profits faltering and wage earnings slowing down, we have a situation where Gross Domestic Income softened to a mere 1.7% annual rate in Q2 from 6.1% in Q1 and 4.6% in Q4 of last year. This was the weakest performance since the third quarter of 2009 just as the worst recession in seven decades was ebbing. In real terms, GDI actually stagnated — up a mere 0.16% annual rate, a buzz-cut from the 3.8% pace in Q1 and 4.5% in Q4, again the weakest tally since Q3 last year and the second weakest since Q2 2009. This puts the GDP slowdown in Q2 into perspective. GDP is all about spending. GDI is all about income. And it is income that drives confidence, spending, and ultimately prosperity — not the other way around.”

Note:

1.  Disposable income (net of debt service) would experience a strong and sustainable improvement with The Leviticus 25 Plan.

2.  ‘QE’ impacts on equities may be starting a slow fade.  A new form of liquidity injection is needed.  One that provides for ‘opportunity’ and ‘debt relief’ at the ground level.

3.  The Leviticus 25 Plan’s direct credit extensions to American families expand individual ‘net worth.’  And it would improve the employment picture and stabilize the housing market.

4.  The Leviticus 25 Plan would re-ignite economic growth – strengthening a positive trend in both GDP and GDI.

The Leviticus 25 Plan recapture provisions would allow for the plan to virtually pay for itself over a 10 year period.  There is no other credible economic plan that will do that.