Basic Reports

The Failure of a Gold Refinery, Report 12 Nov 2018

So this happened: Republic Metals, a gold refiner, filed bankruptcy on November 2. The company had found a discrepancy in its inventory of around $90 million, while preparing its financial statements. We are not going to point the Finger of Blame at Republic or its management, as we do not know if this was honest […]

Wizard’s First Rule, Report 4 Nov 2018

Terry Goodkind wrote an epic fantasy series. The first book in the series is entitled Wizard’s First Rule. We recommend the book highly, if you’re into that sort of thing. However, for purposes of this essay, the important part is the rule itself: “Wizard’s First Rule: people are stupid.” “People are stupid; given proper motivation, […]

What Can Kill a Useless Currency, Report 28 Oct 2018

We believe that our site was rolled back during maintenance. So this is a repost. There is a popular notion, at least among American libertarians and gold bugs. The idea is that people will one day “get woke”, and suddenly realize that the dollar is bad / unbacked / fiat / unsound / Ponzi / […]

Useless But Not Worthless, Report 21 Oct 2018

Let’s continue to look at the fiasco in the franc. We say “fiasco”, because anyone in Switzerland who is trying to save for retirement has been put on a treadmill, which is now running backwards at –¾ mph (yes, miles per hour in keeping with our treadmill analogy). Instead of being propelled forward towards their […]

You Can’t Eat Gold, Report 14 Oct 2018

“You can’t eat gold.” The enemies of gold often unleash this little zinger, as if it dismisses the idea of owning gold and indeed the whole gold standard. It is a fact, you cannot eat gold. However, it dismisses nothing. This gives us an idea. Let’s tie three facts together. One, you can’t eat gold. […]

The Toxic Stew, Report 7 Oct 2018

Last week, we shined a spotlight on a crack in the monetary system that few people outside of Switzerland (and not many inside either) were aware of. There is permanent gold backwardation measured in Swiss francs. Everyone knows that the Swiss franc has a negative interest rate, but so far as we know, Keith is […]

Permanent Gold Backwardation, Report 30 Sep 2018

Sometimes, one just needs to look in the right place. And often in those cases, it just takes a conversation to alert one where to look. We had a call with a Swiss company this week, to discuss gold financing for their business. They reminded us that there is a negative interest rate on Swiss […]

Why Are Wages So Low, Report 23 Sep 2018

Last week, we talked about the capital consumed by Netflix—$8 billion to produce 700 shows. They’re spending more than two thirds of their gross revenue generating content. And this content has so little value, that a quarter of their audience would stop watching if Netflix adds ads (sorry, we couldn’t resist a little fun with […]

Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Avocado Toast, Report 16 Sep 2018

For about ten bucks a month, Netflix will give you all the movies you can watch, plus tons of TV show series and other programs, such as one-off science documentaries. They don’t offer all movies, merely more than you can watch. Oh, and there are no commercials. They don’t just give you old BBC reruns, […]

Why the Fed Denied the Narrow Bank, Report 9 Sep 2018

It’s not every day that a clear example showing the horrors of central planning comes along—the doublethink, the distortions, and the perverse incentives. It’s not every year that such an example occurs for monetary central planning. One came to the national attention this week. A company called TNB applied for a Master Account with the […]