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Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg will endorse presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in a speech at the Democratic National Convention next week, The New York Times reports.

According to the Times, the endorsement “reflects Mr. Bloomberg’s increasing dismay about the rise of Donald J. Trump and a determination to see that the Republican nominee is defeated.”

The New York billionaire decided against an independent bid for president himself earlier this year due to fears he would “play a role in electing a candidate who would weaken our unity and darken our future.”

Bloomberg further stated that Trump “has run the most divisive and demagogic presidential campaign I can remember, preying on people’s prejudices and fears.”

Bloomberg was elected to New York’s mayoralty as a Republican in 2001 but then became an independent.

The Democratic National Convention takes place July 25-29 in Philadelphia.

 

ANALYSIS: Bloomberg's Issue: Guns

It is no surprise that Michael Bloomberg is doing this.  He's one of these politically single-issue obsessives whose agenda is the banning of the private ownership of firearms.  Apparently, Mr. Bloomberg cannot grasp the simple reality that the very people using firearms unlawfully, will not obey a ban!

Bloomberg's action in endorsing Hillary Clinton is just more proof:  Being rich does not mean being smart.

 

New York Waterway ferry struck a Hudson Street dock in Jersey City Saturday night, leaving more than a dozen passengers with minor injuries, officials said.

Jersey City spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill said the ferry made a hard landing and 17 people were injured. 

"Most of the injuries appeared minor, however, three individuals were removed on stretchers," Morrill said. 

Five of the 17 injured passengers were transported to Christ Hospital and the other 12 people were taken to Jersey City Medical Center, according to Morrill.

None of the injuries were serious, Coast Guard spokesman Petty Officer Steve Strohmaier said. The crash occurred around 7:20 p.m.

Jersey City Medical Center spokesman Mark Rabson said Saturday night there were no reports of any broken bones, and the facility's patients were all alert and talking. Some were already discharged while medical staff continued to triage other passengers.  

New York Waterway spokesman Patrick Smith said 57 passengers were on the ferry. No crew members were hurt, Smith added. 

The ferry was heading from the World Financial Center in Manhattan when it hit the Paulus Hook dock, the spokesman said.

"It was a hard landing," Smith said. 

The Coast Guard and New York Police Department were among agencies responding to the scene. Coast Guard officials were handling the investigation. 

 

A heat advisory has been issued for the five boroughs of NYC (Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island) and much of New Jersey will be under an excessive heat watch as temperatures are forecast to soar to dangerous highs this weekend, accompanied by high humidity.

From noon Friday until 7 p.m. Saturday, a heat advisory will apply to Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Brooklyn and Queens, according to the National Weather Service. The alert applies to the following New Jersey counties, as well: eastern Passaic, Hudson, Bergen, Essex and Union.

Hot temperatures and humid conditions are expected to push the heat index into the high 90s, or low 100's the agency said.

That combination will increase the risk for heat-related health issues, especially for the elderly, those with chronic health problems, those working outdoors and other sensitive groups.

New Yorkers are urged to use air conditioning or go to a place with air conditions, and to check on vulnerable friends, family members and neighbors. To find a cooling center in the five boroughs, call 311 or visit nyc.gov/oem.

In western and south portions of New Jersey, the mercury is expected to climb even higher, with highs well into the 90s on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, the National Weather Service said.

An excessive heat watch will be in effect from Saturday morning through Monday afternoon for the following counties:

Warren, Morris, Hudson, Hunterdon, Somerset, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Burlington, Berks, Lehigh, Northampton, western Chester, western Montgomery and upper Bucks.

 

The problem, warns 33-year St. Louis Fed veteran Daniel Thornton, is that "the financial cycle is way ahead of the economic cycle." As Bloomberg notes, that's a worry given that the past two downturns were driven by asset-price deflation.

 
 

Americans are about as wealthy as they've ever been - and that's a worry?

 

Yup, say veteran economists Daniel Thornton and Joe Carson. They're concerned that the swelling of wealth could prove unsustainable because it's far outstripped the growth of the economy since the recession's end in 2009.

 

Thornton, who spent 33 years at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis before retiring in 2014, says in effect that we've seen this picture before. Household net worth ballooned in the late 1990's and the early 2000's; in the first instance pumped up by rising stock prices, in the second by expanding home values.

Both cases ended badly, with the economy falling into recession after the bubbles burst.

 

Chart: Bloomberg

Just as occurred in the previous two episodes, the latest expansion of wealth  has been driven more by rising prices of assets -in this case both shares and homes - than by improved economic fundamentals...

 
 

Since 2009, households have seen their holdings of stock and mutual funds nearly double, to $20.6 trillion.

 

Only 6 percent of that gain can be ascribed to new flows of money into the funds or share purchases, according to calculations by Carson, director of global economic research at AllianceBernstein LP in New York. The rest is due to price appreciation.

As the veteran economists sum up...

 
 

The problem, he said, is that "the financial cycle is way ahead of the economic cycle.''That's a worry given that the past two downturns were driven by asset-price deflation.

 

"Nobody knows what's going to happen," Thornton said. "But there's plenty of reason to think that’s a scary graph."

Still, why worry, with stock valuations at 12 year highs (amid decling earnings) and median home prices well above the prior peak, what could go wrong?

 

Editor’s Comment: Few things are more reassuring than certainty. And one certainty you can bet on is that this house of cards won’t last. How much farther can things be stretched thin? How much more can the world take? The looming implosion of the global economy is a question of when, not if.

There is a great deal of anxiety about when and how things will go down, and how the world will react. But no one can really doubt whether or not the system is sound… in fact, it is entirely certain that it isn’t. Too many have taken on way more than they can handle, and the future looks simply disastrous. Beware and be forewarned.

It Looks Like the Global Debt Bomb Is Ready to Blow

by Joshua Krause

In recent years we’ve seen global debts soar to heights never before seen in human history. Before the financial crisis of 2007 and 2008, public and private debts were already out of control, but when the governments of the world tried to keep the global economy together with all their might, they did so by going into debt, to the tune of over $200 trillion. And that’s just what the numbers looked like the last time anyone checked back in 2014. Who knows how much debt the world is in now.

And that $200 trillion, by the way, amounts to around 300% of the world’s GDP, and it’s still growing. Obviously this isn’t sustainable. If you had a credit card debt worth three times as much as your yearly salary, and it continued to grow year after year, you’d be bankrupt in no time.

At some point, these debts are going implode the global economy. It’s a certainty. The only question that remains is when will this happen?

One of the signs that suggests this event is fast approaching, can be found in the way that governments are issuing their bonds, which are essentially debt contracts that can be bought by investors. Traditionally, a government or institution will sell bonds to an investor, with the promise that they will pay them a certain interest rate. After 10 or 20 years, the investor will get all of their money back in addition to the interest rate they’ve been accumulating. It’s basically a loan given to governments by investors.

But now governments are starting to issue bonds with negative interest rates. Imagine if a bank gave you a loan, but instead of having to pay an interest rate, the bank paid you. So after ten years a $100,000 loan may only cost you $99,000. Except in this case, you the bond buyer, are the bank.

Make sense? Of course not. You’d have to be crazy to make that deal. But that hasn’t stopped these negative interest yield bonds from becoming obscenely popular over the past couple of years.

Now it’s $13 trillion.

That’s the total amount of government bonds in the world that have negative yields, according to calculations published last week by Bank of America Merrill Lynch. 

Given that there were almost zero negative-yielding bonds just two years ago, the rise to $13 trillion is incredible.

In February 2015, the total amount of negative-yielding debt in the world was ‘only’ $3.6 trillion.

A year later in February 2016 it had nearly doubled to $7 trillion.

Now, just five months later, it has nearly doubled again to $13 trillion, up from $11.7 trillion just over two weeks ago.

Think about that: the total sum of negative-yielding debt in the world has increased in the last sixteen days alone by an amount that’s larger than the entire GDP of Russia.

Think about the implications of this. There are investors out there who are actually buying bonds that are guaranteed to lose money if they sit on them. They are basically donating money to governments, so they can continue to operate. Who in the hell would ever make that deal?

The truth is that for some investors, buying negative yield bonds makes sense, albeit for horrible reasons that do not bode well for the future of the global economy.

Joshua Krause is a writer for The Daily Sheeple, where this report was first published.

 

Now it’s $13 trillion.

That’s the total amount of government bonds in the world that have negative yields, according to calculations published last week by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Given that there were almost zero negative-yielding bonds just two years ago, the rise to $13 trillion is incredible.

In February 2015, the total amount of negative-yielding debt in the world was ‘only’ $3.6 trillion.

A year later in February 2016 it had nearly doubled to $7 trillion.

Now, just five months later, it has nearly doubled again to $13 trillion, up from $11.7 trillion just over two weeks ago.

Think about that: the total sum of negative-yielding debt in the world has increased in the last sixteen days alone by an amount that’s larger than the entire GDP of Russia.

Just like subprime mortgage bonds from ten years ago, these bonds are also toxic securities, since many of are issued by bankrupt governments (like Japan).

Instead of paying subprime home buyers to borrow money, investors are now paying subprime governments.

And just like the build-up to the 2008 subprime crisis, investors are snapping up today’s subprime bonds with frightening enthusiasm.

We’ll probably see $15 trillion, then $20 trillion, worth of negative-yielding subprime government debt within the next few months.

So this trend will continue to grow for now, until, just like in 2008, the bubble bursts in cataclysmic fashion.

It took several years for the first subprime bubble to pop. This one may take even longer. But even still, we can already see the consequences today.

A few months ago I told you about the remarkable $3.4 trillion funding gap in the US pension system.

Remember, we’re not talking about Social Security– that has its own $40+ trillion shortfall.

I’m talking about private companies’ retirement pensions, or public service worker pensions at the city and state level.

(By the way, this is NOT strictly a US phenomenon. Europe suffers its own $2 trillion pension shortfall.)

There’s zero mathematical probability that these pensions will be able to meet their obligations.

They’re already underfunded. And the problem is getting worse, thanks in part to this plague of low and negative interest rates.

You see, most pension funds must achieve a low-risk investment return of roughly 8% in order to stay solvent and pay their beneficiaries.

And making an 8% return used to be a reasonable assumption.

25-years ago, government bonds often yielded more than 8%.

So unsurprisingly, the average return for pension funds over the last 25-years has been around 8% according to the National Association of State Retirement Administrators.

But that’s no longer the case.

With such a huge portion of the bond market now with negative yields, it’s virtually impossible for pension funds to keep their promises.

Even Warren Buffett has written that “[pension] funding is woefully inadequate,” and, “In a world where people are living longer and inflation is certain, those promises will be anything but easy to keep.”

Bottom line: anyone who is ever considering retirement must heavily discount the future promises of unfunded pensions and Social Security.

The younger you are, the less likely you are to receive benefits they’ve promised.

But this also gives you time to prepare and take matters into your own hands...

BY: Simon Black via SovereignMan.com,

Page 9 of 27

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