Speaking at Mines & Money Conference in June 2014

I’m excited to announce that I’ve accepted an invitation to speak at the Mines and Money Access Africa conference to be held in Mauritius on June 24 and 25, 2014. It’s a conference aimed at miners and funds investing in mines in Africa. The speaker list is formidable and so is the delegate list. Anyone with mining interests in Africa, or looking to establish those, should find the event of interest. My profile for the event is here and more details of the event and what it offers can be found here.

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Must Watch Documentary: “Money for Nothing”

I got round to watching the documentary “Money for Nothing: Inside the Federal Reserve” on the weekend. It’s an excellent presentation of the policies that the Fed has undertaken in the last four decades, and the consequences thereof, that I’ve seen. I can highly recommend this documentary to anyone looking for a quality economics documentary to learn about the crisis the world is staring down right now, the fiat money-government debt bubble.

Trailer below. Buy your own digital or DVD copy here.

 

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Return of the Zim Dollar?

The Mail & Guardian  reports that the Zimbabwe government is in advanced stages of resurrecting the Zim dollar. I noted to clients yesterday that this shouldn’t be a major problem if the government continues to allow foreign currencies to circulate next to the Zim dollar, but that if the public don’t accept the Zim dollar as payment for goods and services, the government would have to resort to force to get people to use the currency again and ban foreign currencies. This would be very disruptive to the overall economy and could send the economy back into collapse.

Professor Steve Hanke sent two tweets about this yesterday that I thought were good and worth sharing, because I agreed with them. Prof Hanke was an advisor to the Zim government and advocated a complete dollarisation of the economy, which after implementation instantly stabilized the collapsing economy.

 

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FIX IVO APPEAL

My favourite South Africa columnist and writer, Ivo Vegter, has fallen severely ill and getting medical care from a hospital. On a low and volatile freelancer income writing articles with a liberty and freedom slant, he  had to give up medical aid and is now burning through his savings stash to continue to receive medical treatment and recover to health.

Take my word for it, Ivo is doing excellent work in winning the battle of ideas, of communicating to the public that we need less government (i.e. more freedom) in order to see South Africa become a peaceful and prosperous society. If you value this type of world for your and your children’s future, you should consider helping him out, because he’s fighting the most important battle – the battle of ideas and people’s minds – that the rest of us don’t always have the time (or ability) to engage in.

If you have the means to contribute even a little bit to his medical emergency fund, you can get details of how to do so by going to his website, HERE

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Grocery Price Increases in the Past Year

The data comes from the ETM Analytics household price index, where we’ve been tracking a basket of 20 items at four major retailers in the Fourways area of Johannesburg. The infographic was compiled by Grafika24 and published in a Beeld article here.

For foreign readers who don’t understand Afrikaans, following the link below you’ll find a list of translations of the items, in descending order from highest inflation to lowest.

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TV Debate About SA Credit Bubble

I had a mini-debate with Thabi Leoka, RenCap’s SA economist, on SABC Business Review last night. It was only 15 minutes long so I couldn’t get into the real meat of the debate, but I ended the conversation with a hint of where we need to focus: the central banking, fractional reserve monetary system that’s the biggest bubble in the history of the world – and this by its very nature is a credit bubble.

I’ll be writing an article about SA’s credit bubble in coming days where I will back up and strengthen Jesse Colombo’s credit bubble call further. I am busy with three separate research reports at the moment, and this article will take a back seat, but I hope to publish early next week.

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Excellent Book on Austrian Investing

Highly recommended reading, especially for the young investor who’s starting out, but equally useful and informative to the seasoned investor who can’t reconcile the fact of a surging stock market with such a poor real economy. The author, Mark Spitznagel, who himself is a risk-taking practitioner (and a successful one at that), lays it all out in this excellent book. It also comes recommended by the likes of Marc Faber, Paul Tudor Jones II, Nassim Taleb, and Ron Paul wrote the foreword. Read more about the book, here. Available on Kalahari.com for R319.83 (and on Loot.co.za for R352).

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Regarding a Western Cape Secession

With secession fever in the air in Crimea, Scotland, Catalonia, and Venice, Chris Gibbons wrote a blog post at his blog titled “Could the Western Cape Secede?” (Read it here). Chris argues there are too many constraints to the Western Cape being a success un-shackled from the regressing South Africa as a whole, and concludes that:

No, despite the fact that secession might be in the air elsewhere, it really does look as though we South Africans are stuck with each other.

I disagree with this assessment. I believe Chris should focus less on the constraints on the Western Cape as they stand, and more with how the constraints would be lifted under an independent Western Cape. It’s in imaginating a future that doesn’t yet exist, and the policies required to bring this into existence, which is where the Western Cape secession scenario becomes exciting.

I tried to post a comment on the blog but it’s somehow disappeared into the interwebs, so I’ll put my thoughts up below.

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