News Flash: Monday 8/21/17

Summer is almost over, and school is back in session.

 

Civil Rights

Race issues are heating up as protests in Charlottesville Virginia become violent.  There was a standoff between the Right Wing “Alt-Right” uber conservative group, and the Antifa (anti-fascist) group of people.  An alt-right member drove his car into the Antifa protestor crowd, injuring 19 and killing a young woman.  This was a true tragedy, and speaks to the racial/political divide forming in our country.  There is always someone that is benefiting from a divided/protesting America, and it is never the ones doing the protesting.   Americans need to work on joining forces, not separating.  I have talked to many people that were alive during protests of the late 60’s and early 70’s, and most agree when I ask if tensions in this country now are at a similar level that they were back then.  They say that the overall “feel” of the social system is the same, and that there is “just a bad feeling in their gut’s” about the future.  Racism/sexism is a learned phenomenon, which also means it can be unlearned, America.

 


 

Metals

Investors have been piling money into metals recently, attempting to find new assets as the equity markets reach inflated values.  The prices of copper and other industrial metals are reaching multi-year highs.  This is due to the fact that global growth is increasing as supply is falling, so exceptions for future metal prices are quickly increasing.  Even with recent booms in prices, metals could be a good long term buy as real-estate and equities are doomed for a correction.  There are other ways to play the sector other than buying a hunk of copper and hoping to resell it later for a higher price.  You can buy:

  • Copper index fund (CPER)
  • Copper mining company
  • Industrial metal miners etf
  • Industrial metals streaming company (basically finances the exploration and production of new mines)

Personally, I am an advocate of streaming companies, as you get much of the upside potential of mining companies, with less risk.  You achieve less risk due to the fact that if a mine closes or there is some sort of catastrophic accident, the mining company will most likely lose a large chunk of it’s production and therefore share price, while streaming companies only provide finance, and get paid in a percentage of final mined product.  It is a safer bet, and usually comes with a decent dividend and risk/reward.


Foreign Policy

President Donald Trump said he would expand the U.S. role in Afghanistan while taking a tougher approach on Pakistan.  Obviously not giving away too much about American military strategy would jeopardize plans.   However, he did acknowledged that his initial instinct as president had been to pull out of Afghanistan. But, being realistic, he outlined a new South Asia strategy predicated on the need to remain engaged in the region. “From now on, victory will have a clear definition,” he said from the Fort Myer military base in Arlington, Va., describing the defeat of terrorist groups and the protection of American interests.  It seems that we have always had this clear definition, and nothing new is coming from that.  We did not learn much about anything, except for the fact that we are definitely not leaving Afghanistan.  Actually, quite the opposite, we are expanding roles in the Middle East and running a tighter ship across the pond.   The address showed a sharp reversal for Mr. Trump on Afghanistan, where he has long opposed U.S. military involvement.  Nothing new is here.  Trump barely took a stance on anything during the campaign, and has been known to switch views over the years on many foreign and domestic issues, no matter what his denial tweets say on the matter.

Ah well… Fool me once Mr. Trump, shame on me.  Fool me twice, shame the rest of the American populace.

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