Wednesday, December 21, 2016

U.S. Economic Confidence Inches Up to New High

December 21, 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Americans' confidence in the economy continues to gradually strengthen after last month's post-election surge. Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index averaged +10 for the week ending Dec. 18, marking another new high in its nine-year trend.
Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index -- Weekly Averages
The latest figure is up slightly from the index's previous high of +8recorded in both of the prior two weeks. The first positive double-digit index score since the inception of Gallup Daily tracking in 2008 reflects a stark change in Americans' confidence in the U.S. economy from the negative views they expressed in most weeks over the past nine years.
Last month's election of Donald Trump not only marked a change in the country's political power structure but also significantly improved Republicans' economic confidence -- pushing the index into positive territory for the first time since March 2015.
Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index is the average of two components: how Americans rate current economic conditions and whether they feel the economy is improving or getting worse. The index has a theoretical maximum of +100 if all Americans were to say the economy is doing well and improving, and a theoretical minimum of -100 if all Americans were to say the economy is doing poorly and getting worse.
Americans' assessments of current conditions and their outlook for the economy are the most positive they have been in nine years. Thirty-one percent of Americans rated the economy as "excellent" or "good" last week, while 22% said it was "poor," resulting in a current conditions score of +9.
Read the entire article

Friday, December 16, 2016

Human Trials Envisioned After Scientists Reverse Aging In Mammals

Technocracy News
December 16, 2016

Photo: Octogenarian Olympian Johanna Quass (86) of Saxony, Germany (April 2012). Courtesy of Common Constitutionalist

Gene modification in humans is a huge field that is set to explode within a few years, giving hope to Transhumans that immortality is just one step away. Technocrat scientists are racing for the gate to be first to hit the next big breakthrough.  TN Editor
An end to grey hair and crows-feet could be just 10 years away after scientists showed it is possible to reverse ageing in animals.
Using a new technique which takes adult cells back to their embryonic form, US researchers at the Salk Institute in California, showed it was possible to reverse ageing in mice, allowing the animals to not only look younger, but live for 30 per cent longer.
The technique involves stimulating four genes which are particularly active during development in the womb. It was also found to work to turn the clock back on human skin cells in the lab, making them look and behave younger.
Scientists hope to eventually create a drug which can mimic the effect of the found genes which could be taken to slow down, and even reverse the ageing process. They say it will take around 10 years to get to human trials.
Our study shows that ageing may not have to proceed in one single direction,” said Dr Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte, a professor in Salk’s Gene Expression Laboratory. “With careful modulation, aging might be reversed.
“Obviously, mice are not humans and we know it will be much more complex to rejuvenate a person. But this study shows that ageing is a very dynamic and plastic process, and therefore will be more amenable to therapeutic interventions than what we previously thought.”
Scientists have known for some time that the four genes, which are known collectively as the Yamanaka factors, could turn adult cells back to their stem cell state, where they can grow into any part of the body.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Obama in Interview: America “By No Means” Has Overcome “Legacies of Slavery” and “Racism”

The New American
December 13, 2016

    Obama in Interview: America “By No Means” Has Overcome “Legacies of Slavery” and “Racism”
    In a recent interview, Barack Obama expressed the shopworn belief that America has not “overcome” the legacy of “slavery.” The president was not, apparently, talking about how Americans are essentially enslaved to the government until April 24, which in 2015 was the day we had to work until to pay the nation’s tax burden. (Note: According to the Tax Foundation, Americans spent “more on taxes in 2015 than … on food, clothing, and housing combined.”) Rather, he was referring to the slavery that ended 151 years ago.
    Obama made his comments Monday night while being interviewed at the White House by Trevor Noah, host of Comedy Central’s Daily Show (video below). After Noah asked him how he skirts “that line between speaking your mind and sharing your true opinions on race whilst, at the same time, not being seen to alienate some of the people you are talking to,” Obama replied that while race isn’t the only factor in our lives, “we have, by no means, overcome the legacies of slavery and Jim Crow and colonialism and racism, but that the progress we've made has been real and extraordinary; if I'm communicating my genuine belief that those who are not subject to racism can sometimes have blind spots or lack of appreciation of what it feels to be on the receiving end of that, but that doesn't mean that they're not open to learning and caring about equality and justice.”

    It’s apparent that when Obama was speaking of “those who are not subject to racism [and] can sometimes have blind spots,” he wasn’t referring to himself, even though he’s not targeted with white-privilege theory or “safe spaces” from which whites are excluded. (In fact, Obama enjoyed a somewhat privileged upbringing, attending the elite Punahou School in Hawaii — tuition: $20,000 a year.)
    Obama’s excessive focus on the slavery that once occurred in America is lamentable but not surprising, and indicates a lack of perspective. For instance, a striking fact is universally ignored: Europeans and Americans might not have been the first to practice slavery.
    But they were the first to end it.
    Slavery is one of the world’s oldest institutions, once present in most places and in every time — including places such as Africa in our time. The Egyptians, Spartans, and Romans practiced slavery, as did many African tribes, the latter of which would then also sell slaves to European traders. Of course, primitive civilizations might actually consider slavery merciful, as the other option often was death (for captured foes), sometimes as a human sacrifice in a pagan ceremony (à la the Aztecs). Note also that the term “slave” at least partially derives from “Slav” precisely because so many Slavs — white people — were once sold into bondage.
    Of course, a critic will point out that these facts do nothing to change the reality of American slavery’s “legacy.” But what is that reality? As Dr. Walter Williams wrote in his 2001 piece “The Legacy of Slavery Hustle”:
    Illegitimacy among blacks today is 70 percent. Only 41 percent of black males 15 years and older are married, and only 36 percent of black children live in two-parent families. These and other indicators of family instability and its accompanying socioeconomic factors such as high crime, welfare dependency and poor educational achievement is claimed to be the legacy and vestiges of slavery, for which black Americans are due reparations. Let’s look at it.
    In 1940, illegitimacy among blacks was … [14 percent]. From 1890 to 1940, blacks had a marriage rate slightly higher than whites. As of 1950, 64 percent [of] black males 15 years and older were married, compared to today’s 41 percent.
    In Philadelphia, in 1880, two-parent family structure was: black (75.2 percent), Irish (82.2 percent), German (84.5 percent) and native white Americans (73.1 percent). In other large cities such as Detroit, New York and Cleveland, we find roughly the same numbers.
    According to one study of black families (Herbert G. Gutman, “The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom, 1750-1925”), “Five out of six children under the age of 6 lived with both parents.”
    That study also found that, in Harlem between 1905 and 1925, only 3 percent of all families were headed by a woman under 30 and 85 percent of black children lived in two-parent families.
    The question raised by these historical facts is: If what we see today in many black neighborhoods, as claimed by reparation advocates, are the vestiges and legacies of slavery, how come that social pathology wasn’t much worse when blacks were just two or three generations out of slavery? Might it be that slavery’s legacy and vestiges have a way, like diabetes, of skipping generations?
    In fact, the “slave-plainers” are like a skipping record, indulging the insanity of saying the same thing over and over again even though the results are in. Dr. Williams reports that today the statistics are even worse than when he penned his 2001 article, with, for example, the black illegitimacy rate now being almost 75 percent. He also tells us, “Black youth unemployment in some cities is over 50 percent. But high black youth unemployment is also new. In 1948, the unemployment rate for black teens was slightly less than that of their white counterparts — 9.4 percent compared with 10.2.” Note that this figure, too, is worse now than in 2001.
    Moreover, whites and other groups have exhibited similar trends. The white illegitimacy rate in 1960 was 2.3 percent. Now it’s almost 30 percent.
    Is this also due to the “legacy of slavery”?
    And given that all groups are following these patterns, paralleling one another, is it logical to blame such a legacy in the case of one particular group? Or does it make more sense to identify a factor they all have in common?
    Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson, head of the group Brotherhood Organization for a New Destiny, identified this factor when stating, “The lack of moral character is the number one problem in the black community today.” In fact, our civilization is in a state of moral crisis, one affecting all within it. We see this in the rampant moral relativism; decline in faith; corruptive philosophy in academia; and the sexual messages peddled and license encouraged by entertainment, the media, and schools.
    This is why the “legacy” excuse is actually evil. You cannot address a problem until you first acknowledge it; you cannot prescribe the correct cure without first making the correct diagnosis. Of course, it’s understandable why it’s not made. It’s man’s nature to seek excuses, to blame outside forces for one’s woes as opposed to taking personal responsibility. As for the statist powers-that-be, not only are they more than happy to serve up the excuses to win votes and gain and maintain power, but it’s hard to grow government by stressing personal responsibility. So they’d rather blame “society” and always be able to claim we need more affirmative action, quotas, big-government programs, and bureaucratic oversight to stamp out “systemic racism” — with no end in sight.
    What we really need to overcome is the legacy, and continuing reality, of leftist thought.
    Mark Matheny
    December 13, 2016

    Congress woman Tulsi Gabbard  calls for Congress to stop funding terrorism...

    IBM unveils plan to hire 25,000 in US on eve of Trump meeting

    Daily Mail
    December 13, 2016

    US technology giant IBM said Tuesday it would hire 25,000 people in the country over the next four years, a day before President-elect Donald Trump meets with tech industry leaders.
    About 6,000 of those hirings will occur in 2017, IBM chief executive Ginni Rometty said in an opinion article published in the newspaper USA Today.
    IBM, which has undertaken in recent years a restructuring of its activities, will invest $1 billion on employee training and development in the next four years, said the IBM president, chairman and CEO.

    IBM, which has undertaken in recent years a restructuring of its activities, will invest $1 billion on employee training and development in the next four years ©Ethan Miller (Getty/AFP/File)
    "We are hiring because the nature of work is evolving -- and that is also why so many of these jobs remain hard to fill," Rometty said, noting that many industries were being reshaped by data science and cloud computing.
    "Jobs are being created that demand new skills -- which in turn requires new approaches to education, training and recruiting," she said.
    "This is not about white collar vs. blue collar jobs, but about the 'new collar' jobs that employers in many industries demand, but which remain largely unfilled."
    Rometty is a member of Trump's Strategic and Policy Forum, a group of US business leaders focused on boosting economic growth and jobs.
    The IBM jobs investment news came before the highly anticipated meeting Wednesday of the Republican property tycoon-turned-next US president and the leaders of several major technology companies.
    Among those expected to attend are Amazon's Jeff Bezos, Apple's Tim Cook, Satya Nadella of Microsoft, Larry Page of Alphabet (Google) and Elon Musk of Tesla and SpaceX, according to US media.
    Trump is expected to push them to create jobs after saying last week that he would like Apple -- whose coveted iPhones are made in China -- to open a large factory in the United States.
    Read the entire article

    Sunday, December 11, 2016

    1943 Gov’t Film Offers Sharp Contrast with Current US Elite Attitude toward Russia

    Washington's Blog
    December 11, 2016

    The film The Battle of Russia, produced in 1943 by the US War Department (which was renamed the Defense Department in 1949), illustrates a respectful and favorable US elite view of Russian history, the Soviet/Russian people, and Stalin for defeating Hitler in World War II and proving that the German reich(empire) was not invincible.
    The film was originally intended for viewing by military personnel, but went on to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, indicating wider elite enthusiasm for its contents.
    It opens with the following quotes:
    History knows no greater display of courage than that shown by the people of Soviet Russia…
    – Henry L. Stimson, Secretary of War
    We and our allies owe and acknowledge an everlasting debt of gratitude to the armies and people of the Soviet Union.
    – Frank Knox, Secretary of the Navy
    The gallantry and aggressive fighting spirit of the Russian soldiers command the American army’s admiration.
     – George C. Marshall, Chief of Staff, US Army
    I join … in admiration for the Soviet Union’s heroic and historic defense.
     – Ernest J. King, Commander in Chief, US Fleet
    …the SCALE AND GRANDEUR of the (Russian) effort mark it as the GREATEST MILITARY ACHIEVEMENT IN ALL HISTORY.
    – General Douglass MacArthur, Commander in Chief, Southwest Pacific Area [emphases original]

    The Battle of Russia begins by depicting the many times Russia has been invaded over the centuries, and how it has has always defeated and driven out the invaders.  It then delves into the reasons for why this “imperialism”, as the film calls it, occurs: Russia’s many raw materials and natural and human resources, which, the film says, imperial countries seek to control and benefit from.
    Here is the film:
    In contrast to the elite views illustrated in this film, why are we today witnessing what Russia expert Stephen Cohen, and many other analysts, refer to as a storm of dangerous anti-Russian propaganda?  It can’t be that US elites regard Putin as worse than Stalin, as that would make no sense, and since such concerns do not appear to animate their decision-making in the first place, as evidenced by their own behavior (ie Iraq invasion) and support for numerous other countries with oligarchic regimes, like Saudi Arabia.
    So, could part of the reason be that it is now the “imperialist” US elite pushing military forces against Russia and carrying out coups on Russia’s borders?
    Here is an animated map of the expansion of the US military installation, NATO, towards Russia since 1949, including in violation of a US agreement made after the collapse of the USSR:
    An animation showing the year and location of counties as they joined the alliance.
    This map further illustrates how the US has Russia surrounded by militants:
    After the Soviet Union collapsed, US oligarchs were able to succeed where the Nazis failed: they penetrated Russia and enriched themselves on its resources (listed in the film), including the Russian people, contributing towards a massive decline in happiness and prosperity in the Russian population, as well as millions of years in lost life.  But as Russia regained strength, Putin was brought to power, and he kicked out or curtailed some of these Western oligarchs.
    Thus, a more likely reason for the current US elite hostility towards Putin and Russia than their thinking he is worse than Stalin would seem to be that they are bitter about losing imperial control over the country, and would like to regain it.  Another likely reason is that Russia is again also able to exert some influence in international affairs, further balancing the US’s ability to invade and conquer countries like Syria.
    So, while in the film the US praises Russia for helping to end German imperialism, not just in Russia but internationally, it appears that now US elites are angry that Russia is curtailing their ability to carry out imperialism in Russia and internationally.
    While Trump has indicated that he would like to ‘get along’ with Russia and has already made moves in that direction, US oligarchs, who were expecting a Clinton presidency, are pushing him to adopt her hard-line attitude toward that country, which, experts like Cohen point out, would increase the potential for nuclear war, as well as continue to fill the coffers of arms dealers.  (Clinton received more money from oligarchs in the weapons industry than any other candidate, and the US is, by large margin, the world’s most prolific nation in terms of arms-trafficking.)
    Robert J. Barsocchini is an independent researcher and reporter who focuses on global force dynamics and has served as a cross-cultural intermediary for the film and Television industry. His work has been cited, published, or followed by numerous professors, economists, lawyers, military and intelligence veterans, and journalists. Updates on Twitter.

    Tuesday, December 6, 2016


    Infowars News
    December 6, 2016

    Day five of the recount is underway in Wisconsin and it’s not looking good for Hillary.
    According to current totals, Trump appears to be up by about 69,899 recount votes.
    The City of Milwaukee’s absentee ballots still have yet to be recounted.
    “Milwaukee counts its absentee ballots centrally (not at the polling place) on Election Night,” the state’s election commission website says. “When those absentee ballots have been counted the numbers will be updated.”
    Check out the Wisconsin Recount Results Update page for the latest on the recount, and see for yourself why it’s backfiring spectacularly on Hillary.
    When you visit the link, the first set of columns are the original vote tally. The second column of numbers are the official recount results, and the third is the difference between the recount and the original tally. (If a county has not been recounted, it appears as “-100%.”)
    In Michigan, where Trump won by about 10,700 votes, another recount is underway of the state’s 4.8 million votes.
    Watch: Jill Stein’s Recount FAIL!

    McDonald’s Response to $15 Minimum Wage: Automation in Every Store

    The New American
    December 6, 2016
    McDonald’s Response to $15 Minimum Wage: Automation in Every Store
    It’s official: McDonald’s says that every one of its 14,000 stores nationwide will be replacing cashiers with automated touch-screen kiosks. They’re starting with stores where minimum-wage laws mandate the highest rates, such as Florida, New York, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Seattle.
    According to CNNMoney:
    So the fast food giant is rolling out self-order kiosks, mobile pay options, an updated interior design, even table service. The changes are already starting to show up at locations in Florida, New York and Southern California, where 500 restaurants have been updated. Restaurants in San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, D.C. and Seattle will get upgrades in early 2017. Now, McDonald's loyalists will be able to place their customized order on a touch screen, take a seat and have their meal brought right over. Next year, they'll even have the option of mobile ordering.
    That means that, eventually, more than 20 million customers every day will place their own orders at a kiosk or on a mobile device and then have them delivered by a human to their table. And it’s just a matter of time before those humans will be replaced by machines as well.

    Read the entire article

    Monday, December 5, 2016

    EXCLUSIVE: ISIS declares WAR on Trump's inauguration day calling it 'BLOODY FRIDAY'

    The Express
    December 5, 2016

    ISLAMIC STATE is planning a 'Bloody Friday' assault on the SAME DAY as Donald Trump is inaugurated as US president, it can be revealed.

    And the Islamic terror organisation is reported to have recruited a number of new English speaking operatives in recent months in a major bid to communicate messages ahead of the event.
    US special forces will be on high alert when Mr Trump takes over as 45th President of the United States on Friday, January 20, 2017, in Washington, DC.
    But security analysts have been following communications between members of the group who are planning large scale attacks on that day, it has been claimed.
    According to reports ISIS has expanded production of special editions of official videos with English subtitles in recent weeks and with a view to reinforcing targets on US soil.
    And their ISIS-linked Amaq Agency Telegram channels have resumed posting on social networks after they were went temporarily offline following a terror attack in the US last Monday.

    Social media groups join forces to counter online terror content

    Financial Times
    December 5, 2016

    Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Twitter on Monday announced they had joined forces in an attempt to curb explicit terrorist imagery online.

    The move follows criticism from Brussels that big US social media groups have made insufficient effort to clamp down on hate speech.
    In a statement, the technology groups said they were building new technology that would identify extremist content, including terrorist recruitment videos and images of executions, via a digital fingerprint known as a “hash”, which would then be compiled into a shared global database. Once created, the hash would be attached like a watermark to content, which would then be easy to identify and take down.
    “Our companies will begin sharing hashes of the most extreme and egregious terrorist images and videos we have removed from our services,” the companies said. “By sharing this information with each other, we may use the shared hashes to help identify potential terrorist content on our respective hosted consumer platforms.”
    The project will be presented at the EU Internet Forum on Thursday, with the database launching in early 2017.
    The companies said the collaboration was not a knee-jerk response to European demands but had been under development for several months.

    Thursday, December 1, 2016


    Infowars News
    December 1, 2016

    The Obama administration will hold military exercises in Norway, and Turkey has raised tensions in Syria, as the establishment continues trying to provoke war with Russia before Donald Trump is sworn-in.
    The week of military exercises above the Arctic Circle is significant given that the drills mark the northernmost deployment of the American M1 Abrams tank, a critical piece of military hardware in the event of conflict with Russia.
    Norwegian police are reportedly investigating more than 10 reports of unidentified drones flying in the vicinity of the military exercise.
    Ole Johan Skogmo,  a spokesman for the Norwegian Army, said they were investigating whether the drones belonged “to interested locals or other nations.”
    Norway has also indicated its intent to purchase five Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, with Defense Minister Ine Eriksen Soereide claiming “the new security situation increases our demand for situational awareness in our own vicinity.”

    Tuesday, November 29, 2016

    The Corporate Media’s Gulag of the Mind

    Washington's Blog
    November 29, 2016

    One of the most remarkable ironies of The Washington Post’s recent evidence-free fabrication of purported “Russian propaganda” websites (including this site) is how closely it mimics the worst excesses of the USSR’s Stalinist era.
    Those unfamiliar with the Stalinist era’s excesses will benefit from reading Solzhenitsyn’s three-volume masterpiece The Gulag Archipelago: 1918-1956The Gulag Archipelago 2 and Gulag Archipelago 3.
    One episode is especially relevant to the totalitarian tactics of The Washington Post’sevidence-free accusation. Solzhenitsyn tells the story of one poor fellow who made the mistake of recounting a dream he’d had the previous night to his co-workers.
    In his dream, Stalin had come to some harm. In Solzhenitsyn’s account, the fellow was remorseful about the dream.
    Alas, mere remorse couldn’t possibly save him. He was promptly arrested for “anti-Soviet thoughts” and given a tenner in the Gulag–a tenner being a ten-year sentence in a Siberian labor camp.
    The Washington Post’s accusation is based on a “behavioral analysis”–in other words, publicly sharing “anti-Soviet thoughts”–in our era, the equivalent is sharing anti-Establishment thoughts.
    Your crime, as it were, need not be substantiated with evidence; the mere fact you publicly revealed your anti-Establishment thought convicted you.
    This is the Corporate Media’s Gulag of the Mind. We’ll tell you what’s “true” and what is correct to think and believe. Any deviation from the party line is a threat and must be discredited, marginalized or suppressed.
    Where is the Post’s hard evidence of Russian ties or Russian influence? There isn’t any–but like Stalin’s henchmen, the Post has no need for evidence: merely going public with an anti-Establishment thought “proves” one’s guilt in the kangaroo court of America’s corporate media (a.k.a. mainstream media or MSM).
    While The Washington Post is owned by billionaire Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, the vast majority of what we read, watch and hear is controlled by a handful of corporations loaded with cash and connections to the ruling elite.
    This concentration of media control creates the illusion of choice— the same elite-propaganda spin is everywhere you look; our “choice” of “approved” (i.e. corporate) media is roughly the same as that offered the Soviet citizenry in the old USSR.
    This is why the billionaire/corporate media is so desperate to discredit the non-corporate media: if an alternative to the corporate media’s elite-propaganda catches on, the corporate media will lose its audience, its advert revenues and a substantial measure of its influence.
    The cornered elite-propaganda beast is lashing out, undermining its waning credibility with every attack on an independent free press. As I noted in a recent conversation with Max Keiser, democracy requires the citizenry to sort out who benefits from whatever narrative is being pushed.
    That’s what terrifies the elite-propaganda mainstream media: the status quo narrative they’ve spewed for years doesn’t benefit the bottom 95%– rather, it actively impoverishes and disempowers the bottom 95%–and the citizenry is slowly awakening to this reality.
    So for goodness sakes, if you have an anti-elitist dream, keep it to yourself or you’ll end up on the ruling elite’s “enemies list.”
    The final irony in all this: the real enemy of democracy and freedom of the press is The Washington Post and the rest of the billionaire/corporate media. The only way to escape the Corporate Media’s Gulag of the Mind is to stop watching their TV channels, turn off their radio stations and stop reading their print/digital propaganda–except of course if you have a taste for dark humor.

    US Islamist group arming up in anticipation of Trump, report claims

    FOX News
    November 29, 2016
    Gilani issued a statement right after Trump was elected, according to the report. (Christian Action Network)

    An Islamist group with secretive compounds around the U.S. is arming up in anticipation of raids by the incoming Trump administration, according to a new report from a nonprofit think tank.
    Muslims of America, which is headquartered in Hancock, N.Y., and run from Pakistan by leader Sheikh Gilani, operates 22 “Islamic villages” around the nation. The compounds are legal, but Gilani has recently ordered all unarmed members to gather firearms, licenses and hunting permits, according to Clarion Project. Gilani believes his group will be targeted by Trump.
    “I foretold disastrous results should this man be elected as the American President,” Gilani said in a statement shortly after Trump was elected president on Nov. 8. “He has come as a test and trial for the faithful adherents of the holy books.”
    Supporters say the compounds are simply Islamic communes for mainly African-American Muslims who seek to follow Gilani’s teachings in a rural setting. While they have been the subject of numerous accusations and undercover reporting, the group is not known to have supported or conducted terrorist activity, and its critics are widely dismissed as conspiracy theorists.
    A confidential source allegedly inside the organization told Martin Mawyer of the Christian Action Network and Ryan Mauro of the Clarion Project that the group expects the FBI to reopen its cases against them as a “homegrown terrorist organization,” according to the report.
    According to the report, the sources stated that members across the country were given instructions by Gilani to “be prepared to fight,” against President-Elect Trump, who the group believes is part of a satanic-Zionist conspiracy to destroy Islam.
    Muslims of America’s headquarters in rural New York is known as “Islamberg.” According to a 2007 FBI report obtained by the Clarion Project, MOA “possesses an infrastructure capable of planning and mounting terrorist campaigns within the U.S. and overseas.”

    Dollar Heads for Biggest Monthly Advance Against Yen Since 2009

    Bloomberg Markets
    November 29, 2016

    The dollar was on pace for its best month against the yen since 2009 as signs of U.S. economic strength spurred bets that monetary tightening will accelerate.
    The greenback has risen more than 7 percent in November amid speculation U.S. President-elect Donald Trump will pursue reflationary policies, as futures signal growing bets that the Federal Reserve will follow an interest-rate increase in December with additional hikes next year.
    The three-week rally since Nov. 4 was the dollar’s biggest versus the yen in more than two decades. Hedge funds and other large speculators have boosted bullish dollar wagers to the most since February, according to Commodity Futures Trading Commission data. A report Tuesday showing the U.S. economy expanded more than previously reported last quarter added to the bullish backdrop.
    “The dollar’s going to appreciate and we think the biggest move is actually going to come against the yen,” Steven Saywell, global head of foreign-exchange strategy at BNP Paribas SA, said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. “The greatest policy divergence, or difference between central-bank policies, is going to be between that of the U.S. and the Japanese.”
    The bank expects the dollar to move toward 115 yen at the end of the first quarter and to 128 by the end of 2017.
    The dollar appreciated 0.4 percent to 112.38 yen as of about 4:30 p.m. in New York, after reaching an eight-month high of 113.90 last week. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index, which measures the greenback against 10 major peers, is up 3.4 percent in November.
    “Dollar-yen is particularly sensitive to the Trump-reflation trade -- that’s clearly what we’ve witnessed over the last three to four weeks since the election,” said Ned Rumpeltin, European head of currency strategy at Toronto-Dominion Bank in London. Still, “we’re past the point where markets are willing to embrace the policy shift with blind optimism.”

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