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5.15.19 - Enforcing Ethics on Unethical Lawmakers

Gold last traded at $1,297 an ounce. Silver at $14.81 an ounce.

NEWS SUMMARY: Precious metal prices held near 1-week highs Wednesday on rising geopolitical uncertainty. U.S. stocks rose on news that President Donald Trump plans to delay the implementation of auto tariffs.

Everything Investors Need to Know About the War on Cash -Motley Fool
"Physical forms of currency - cash and personal checks - are losing favor among global consumers to alternative forms of payment, including debit and credit cards, digital wallets, mobile commerce platforms, and, in some circles, even cryptocurrencies. Online banking applications and automatic bill-pay options are making writing checks, using cash for high-cost transactions, and other traditional financial services less and less attractive....Why is cash use declining? Three catalysts are responsible for global commerce's gravitation toward cashless payments: 1. E-commerce, 2. Mobile payments, 3. International adoption of digital payments....The primary risk to investing in this trend is probably obvious: While we have named the loser in this 'war,' it is much harder to know who the ultimate winner will be. Will card payments spread from the United States and other developed economies to emerging economies, or will mobile payments displace the plastic rectangles residing in our wallets? Are cryptocurrencies the future of money or a fad that will mostly be used for illicit purposes and black-market transactions?....The war on cash isn't going away any time soon...Cash might never go extinct, but it will probably occupy decreasing market share in the world's economy for some time to come."

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China deal If the sell-off is just starting, here's where to hide out -CNBC
"With the stock market roiling over new barbs between Washington and Beijing, investors are scrambling to figure out where to put money in times of volatility. History shows gold and bonds outperform when fear spreads on Wall Street....The volatility index or 'VIX' is considered one of the market's best fear gauges...The index traded up to 21 on Monday, up from lows under 13 on May 3....'Volatility surged to multi-month highs last week as US-China trade war drama unexpectedly escalated,' Tom Essaye, founder of The Sevens Report, wrote in a note. 'The lack of trade agreement does put a headwind on global growth, so I would re-view portfolios and make sure they are insulated from volatility and that would mean rotating out of cyclical sectors and into more defensive sectors.'....A rise in gold often accompanies market pessimism as investors favor metals and the security of government debt for their reliable returns when turbulence rattles the fragile equity markets."

How to enforce ethics on unethical lawmakers -Ponte/WND
"The Democrats failed to destroy Donald Trump with smears...and endless unproven accusations from the leftist media. Instead of quitting, Democrats have turned to an endless Inquisition of Stalinist show trials to be held before not one, not two, but SIX committees...In the center ring of this circus at the moment is New York Congressman Jerrold Nadler, who for many years waged personal vendettas against Trump. Nadler is the new chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and has issued demands for endless documentation touching on President Trump from 81 different individuals and entities....Nadler's Judiciary Committee, however, reportedly has 22 Democrats to only 12 Republicans, giving Democrats a rigged 65 percent committee majority...Televising lawmaker interrogation before such a committee would therefore present a fake impression that Congress is overwhelmingly against the Trump Administration. Democrats have at least two reasons for this unethical tactic. One is that the Attorney General is vastly experienced, articulate, has a sterling reputation and is at least 20 IQ points smarter than any Democrat on the Committee...Honest Republicans should assign a Senate committee to do tit-for-tat to Democrats whatever is done in the House to Republicans. Subpoenas should demand that Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, and all Democratic chairmen surrender 20 years of tax and other records...Sauce for the populist goose is sauce for the leftist gander."

Gold steadies near 1-month peak as trade woes lift safe-haven demand -Reuters
"Gold prices held near one-month highs on Tuesday as an escalation in the Sino-U.S. trade dispute sent investors looking for safe-haven assets. Asian shares extended losses on Tuesday, following sharp overnight declines in Wall Street, after Beijing on Monday announced retaliatory tariff-hike to counter Washington. 'People are looking to find a safe harbor in the storm while they wait for the dust to settle,' said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst, Asia Pacific at OANDA....In addition to more tariffs, traders are concerned that China, the largest foreign U.S. creditor, may dump treasuries to counter the Trump administration's hardening trade stance. Besides trade worries, gold investors were also keeping a tab on escalating tensions between the United States and Iran after Saudi Arabia said on Monday that two of its oil tankers were among those attacked off the coast of the United Arab Emirates."

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