Senior forward Taylor Kuehl (6) fights for the puck during a game against Mercyhurst on Nov. 11 at the OSU Ice Rink. OSU lost, 3-0.Credit: Jon McAllister / Asst. photo editorRiding a three-game winning streak, the Ohio State women’s hockey team fell to No. 8 Mercyhurst, 3-0, Tuesday night.The Buckeyes have faced the Lakers three times in program history, going 1-2 over that trio of matchups. Despite failing to even the series record, OSU coach Nate Handrahan said he felt OSU matched up well with its opponent at the OSU Ice Rink.“Mercyhurst is No. 8 in the country and I think we played them pretty evenly scoring aside,” Handrahan said.Even though the team wasn’t pleased with the outcome, Handrahan said the loss gave the Buckeyes insight into where they stand.When the two teams met on Oct. 5, 2013, the game went into overtime to decide the winner. OSU won the game, 4-3, thanks to now-senior forward Taylor Kuehl, who netted the game-winning goal.The first period went by with no score, as freshman goalie Kassidy Sauve posted five saves.Senior defenseman Sara Schmitt said the first period was the highlight of the game for the Buckeyes and was where they played with the most energy.“First period went well but we kind of only played half the game, and you can’t win if you don’t play the whole game,” Schmitt said.In the second frame, the Lakers totaled eight penalty minutes while the Buckeyes added six. Mercyhurst capitalized on one of the Lakers power-plays to take the lead.Mercyhurst freshman forward Sarah Robello put a shot past Sauve’s stick side with 11:08 left in the second. Even though the Buckeyes outshot the Lakers, 8-6, the period ended with OSU down one.“Our low point was the middle of the second period we took some shifts off mentally and they capitalized on that,” senior forward Danielle Gagne said. “We stopped playing smart.”Skating onto the ice for the third period, the Lakers were playing with high energy. With 15:12 left in the period, the Buckeyes were on a two-minute power-play. Despite the man-up opportunity, OSU failed to put a goal on the board.Power-play effort is something Handrahan said he wasn’t pleased with.“Special teams, we’ve got to solve that issue, because right now it’s a major factor. If we get one on the five-on-three in the second period might be a different ball game,” Handrahan said. “We have to do some things to create opportunity.”After a penalty on both teams for roughing, the game picked up in physicality.A few minutes later, Luczak was taken out of the game. Referees called a five minute major penalty on the Mercyhurst player for game misconduct, for head contact to an OSU playerMercyhurst junior forward Jenna Dingeldein scored an empty net goal 19:30 into the third period, completing the scoring in the 3-0 shutout.The Buckeyes are scheduled to keep home ice this weekend for a series against Minnesota. The first game is scheduled for Friday at 6:07 p.m. The second tilt is scheduled for Saturday at 2:07 p.m at the OSU Ice Rink.
State Rep. Kim LaSata is reminding Berrien County residents about her scheduled consumer education seminar tomorrow, Aug. 3. The seminar will be hosted in partnership with the Michigan Attorney General’s office to educate residents on identity theft.The forum will feature information on protection against identity theft and what steps to take in the event you become a victim of this crime.The event starts at 1 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 3 at the North Berrien Senior Center, 6648 Ryno Road in Coloma. There is no charge to attend. For more information, contact Rep. LaSata’s office at 517-373-1403 or by email at [email protected]### 02Aug Rep. LaSata to host consumer education seminar Categories: LaSata News,LaSata Photos
So…where do we go from here? A good question for which I have no answer.With the gold and silver markets closed in London and New York, there was no activity worthy of the name. There were some squiggles on the gold chart during the Far East trading day…but that was it.Kitco’s silver chart was a straight line.Strangely enough, the dollar index showed activity all day, with the 30 basis point drop at 8:20 a.m. in New York being the most prominent feature on the chart. If this activity is to be believed, the index finished down about 16 basis points.With no markets, there was no HUI or Silver Sentiment Index.There was no Daily Delivery Report…nothing from either GLD, SLV…or the U.S Mint…and nothing from the Comex-approved depositories.But, as Ted Butler pointed out to me on Thursday, the CFTC did post the Commitment of Traders Report and the Bank Participation Report…and their worth spending some time on.Both of these reports are derived from the same data set…and are for positions held at the close of Comex trading at 1:30 p.m. Eastern time…which was thirty minutes before JPMorgan et al bombed the precious metals market, so none of that trading activity is in these reports.In silver, there was an increase in the Commercial net short position during the reporting week, as the bullion banks and other Commercial traders increased their short position by 1,658 contracts, or 8.3 million ounces. The Commercial net short position now sits at 156.68 million ounces.The ‘1 through 4’ Commercial traders are short 174.65 million ounces…and once you remove the 25,257 market-neutral spread trades from the Non-commercial category, these four traders are short 39.1% of the entire Comex silver futures market. The lion’s share of that amount is held by JPMorgan. The ‘5 through 8’ Commercial traders are short an additional 44.83 million ounces of silver. Of the 45 short-side traders in the Commercial category, the ‘big 8’ traders combined are short 48.9% of the entire Comex silver market. That’s concentration…and this is what the CFTC and the CME Group refuse to deal with.The Commercial net short position in gold declined by 761,000 ounces…and now sits at 17.75 million ounces. The ‘1 through 4’ Commercial traders [read bullion banks] are short 11.7 million ounces of gold…and the ‘5 through 8’ commercial traders are short an additional 5.5 million ounces.Of the 45 short-side traders in the Commercial category, the ‘big 8’ Commercial traders are short 44.4% of the entire Comex futures market in gold…once the 20,401 market-neutral spread trades are subtracted from the Non-Commercial category.Of course, thirty minutes after the 1:30 p.m. cut-off for this COT report, everything began to change. Once ‘da boyz’ were through bombing the precious metal market 24-hours later, it was a given that the internal structure of both the silver and gold markets had become far stronger…and this already bullish COT report is vastly more so at this point. But we won’t know how much of an improvement there was until next Friday’s COT report.In silver, the April Bank Participation Report showed the 4 U.S. banks were net short 19,896 Comex silver contracts…which is 21.8% of the entire Comex futures market in silver. I would guess that close to 90% of that position is held by only one U.S. bank…and that would be JPMorgan. The March BPR showed that these same four U.S. banks were net short 23,665 Comex silver contracts, so it’s declined quite a bit over the month. This should be no surprise since the drive-by shooting that began on February 29th. There are 14 non-U.S. banks that hold positions in the Comex futures market in silver. In the April report these banks were net short 2,275 Comex contracts…which is a decline of 300 contracts since the March report. That works out to about 163 contracts for each bank…and it’s my bet that the vast majority of this net short position is only held by two or three of the 14 reporting banks. But regardless of that, their positions are immaterial in the grand scheme of things.In gold, the same 4 U.S. banks are now net short 69,473 Comex contracts…down from 92,052 Comex contracts in March. These 4 U.S banks are net short 17.9% of the Comex futures market in gold.The 19 non-U.S. banks are net short 37,802 Comex gold contracts…a smallish increase from March’s BPR report where they held 36,257 contracts net short. This is less than 2,000 Comex gold contracts held short by each bank but, just like silver, I’d guess that three or four banks of the 19 that report holding Comex contracts, hold the lion’s share of this non-U.S. bank short position in gold as well.As you can tell from these numbers for both silver and gold, the biggest changes from the March to April Bank Participation Reports were in the size of the positions held by the 4 U.S. banks. This engineered price decline that began on February 29th was “Made in the U.S.A.” The changes in the non-U.S. banks in both metals was immaterial, as it almost always is.And, just like silver, the Bank Participation Report, if it included the price decline of Tuesday and Wednesday, would be a vastly different animal from what it showed as of the Tuesday 1:30 p.m. cut-off. That applies to all the precious metals…and copper as well.Here’s Nick Laird’s Days of World Production to Cover Short Positions that the four and eight largest traders hold short for each Comex-traded commodity. This is a visual representation of the data in the above COT report. Note that the four precious metals have the largest total short positions…and that the 4 largest traders/bullion banks hold the bulk of them.(Click on image to enlarge)Before I move on to today’s list of stories, I’d like to draw your attention to a new 80-page book that reader Randall Reinwasser has published. It’s headlined “The Ultimate Guide to Storing Gold and Silver Overseas: An Inside Look at 10 Offshore Gold & Silver Storage Facilities“. If this is a topic that you would find of interest, the link to the book at the amazon.com website is here.I’ve been saving quite a few stories for today’s column…and I don’t have that many in total, so I hope you have the time to read them all.If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a small chance of survival. There may even be a worse case: you may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves. – Winston ChurchillToday’s musical selection is not a ‘blast from the past’ at all. It’s another one of those sublime moments that has come to us courtesy of the hit television show “Britain’s Got Talent”. I still continue to watch the Paul Potts, Susan Boyle and Andrew Johnston videos for their inspirational values even now.Well, I have another name to add to that list…and it will soon be a household name worldwide. That name is Jonathan Antoine…and he’s all of 17 years young. He appears here on stage with singer Charlotte Jaconelli. I hate to say it, but Charlotte was totally outclassed…and she knew it. Nobody had to tell the judges or the studio audience that he was gifted, as they all knew it instinctively. Saying that he’s the reincarnation of Luciano Pavarotti would not be a stretch.The audition is only spoiled by some of Simon Cowell’s comments, which I thought were totally out of line. If I were the network, I’d make sure that he gave a very profuse and very public apology for what followed after the couple was through singing. It was inexcusable at best…and unconscionable at worst.I’ve listened to it countless times already…and I urge you to listen to it as well. It’s already had over 9 million hits…and I thank Roy Stephens for sending me this youtube.com video clip about ten days ago…and the link is here.So…where do we go from here? A good question for which I have no answer. It’s obvious from looking at the 6-month silver and gold charts below, that the flush out from the February 29th drive-by shooting was still ongoing…and the price action on Tuesday and Wednesday was obviously an extension of that trend.(Click on image to enlarge)(Click on image to enlarge)Are we done to the downside now? And as I said in Friday’s column…is it worth the while of JPMorgan et al to go after any more leveraged long positions, as the vast majority have already been flushed out?We’ll just have to wait it out and see what happens.Enjoy what’s left of your Easter weekend…and I’ll see you in this space on Tuesday. North American Nickel’s latest news from our 100% owned Post Creek property in the Sudbury mining camp is what geologists always hope for….a large, clearly defined, un-tested target close to surface in a known camp with excellent infrastructure advantages for mining. Drilling is scheduled to begin in September. In this case it’s an EM anomaly 200 m long, that has been interpreted as the electromagnetic signature of ‘near-massive to massive sulphide.’ It’s located approximately 55 m below surface and the trend of the anomaly corresponds, in part, to both the CJ#1 dyke and the Whistle Offset Structure to the south. Please visit our website to read the full news release and learn more about North American Nickel. Sponsor Advertisement
In This Issue. * Dollar bears have emerged from hibernation. * Fed Presidents fill the airwaves. * Euro moves higher on positive PMI data. * Disappointing China PMI worries commodity investors. And Now. Today’s A Pfennig For Your Thoughts. Dollar bears have emerged from hibernation. We will again start today’s Pfennig off with some thoughts from the big boss Frank Trotter: Saint Louis, Missouri – “Welcome home.” I don’t think anyone loves immigration or customs at any border. True some are easy and some are, well impossible. The operations management person inside me screams “I could make this more efficient,” then I try to practice my version of stoicism – focus on what you can change and let the rest alone. As a Global Entry participant I have to say that returning home is getting pretty slick. At immigration entering the USA I have really developed an affection for the phrase most officers utter after clearing your passport – “welcome home.” Global Entry in Dallas this morning couldn’t have been more helpful and efficient but the words weren’t there – maybe it should be programmed into the machine just for me!! Oh yah – focus on what I can change . . . . Even with instant access to the globe through the Internet – Google StreetView® alone can take you more places than we could imagine even 35 years ago – there is no substitute for being there. Speaking with people who live there. Seeing the streets and shops and sights in person have no substitute. Even then it may take some explanation. Our hotel was in Palermo Viejo, something we would call in the US an up and coming gentrified neighborhood. It’s a lively place, trending younger, full of Argentina’s middle class. We had all noticed the massive amount of graffiti on everything – beautiful buildings created at the turn of the 19th century when Argentina was wealthy – covered at the ground level with slogans, declarations of love, and when lucky an impressive mural by a true artist. We commented and our local guide said – oh that’s the result of the military years. At that time speech was so heavily regulated that the only expression was in graffiti. Today it’s illegal but tolerated as a remembrance of that dark period. She also told of military bursting into her university classroom to remove friends who were never seen again. We see the white scarves and pause a moment in respect. Corporate Socialism – the foundation of Peronism – is a derivative of pre-World War II Italian economic fascism. Like communism and purist socialism and a lot of other planned economy methodologies there hasn’t been a case that has been shown to work. It was an experiment that took Argentina from amongst the wealthiest on earth to a perpetual struggle to survive. Other countries too. The great experiments in the US, Japan, and Europe continue with QE of one form or another the only headline we find consistently across the past few months. As observers we feel a little unhinged as the markets rocket back and forth with each minor news item’s release. The engine of the world grinds on, but I worry that without the invisible hand of the market on the helm we face unintended consequences of well-meaning actions across the globe. Politicians and Central Bankers worldwide state emphatically that this company or that bank is too large to manage – then turn to the microphone to announce a new plan to stimulate the entire global economy that is sure to work. Really? Oh yah – focus on what I can change . . . . Welcome home Frank, and thanks again for your great introduction to today’s Pfennig. The dollar continued on its steepest weekly slide over the past 3.5 years, helped by more jawboning by members of the Federal Reserve. Earlier this month Chuck wrote about how everyone seemed to be jumping on the ‘long dollar’ bandwagon, and that it can get dangerous when you have that many investors all agreeing on a ‘sure thing’. Well the Fed statement last week now seems to be turning out to be an inflection point in the dollar’s latest rally as we appear to be seeing some unwinding of these long dollar positions. The euro has been one of the largest benefactors of the recent dollar weakness, moving up a full cent each of the past 3 days. The euro continued its march higher in spite of fresh worries concerning Greek debt negotiations. The Greek PM and Germany’s Chancellor held a meeting in Berlin yesterday, but neither party expected to emerge from the meetings with a solution to the Greek debt problem. Instead, Germany’s leader stated that she wanted to discuss Greece’s plan in person with the new Prime Minister to hopefully find some common ground. The euro was helped out this morning by the European PMI report which showed the European manufacturing sector is healthier than expected. As I wrote yesterday, several Fed Presidents spoke on Monday and their tone was generally seen as dovish. The St. Louis Fed President spent the morning on CNBC where he stated his feelings that the dollar was not far from fair value and questioned just how much more strength the dollar will show vs. the euro. He pointed to the ECB’s launch of QE and the end of bond buying here in the US as the obvious driver of the recent strength of the US dollar. But he added “That has all been priced into markets so I think it’s unclear at this point where the dollar euro exchange rates are going to go.” Sticking to the ‘script’ laid out by Fed Chair Janet Yellen, Bullard said that policy moves here in the US continue to be ‘data dependent’. Fed Vice Chair Stanley Fischer confirmed that the FOMC will likely begin to raise interest rates sometime this year, but also said the path of interest rate policy remains uncertain. Fisher, who is seen as more dovish than Bullard actually brought up the possibility of decreasing rates when pushed about the timing of the next move. He pointed out that the Fed would tighten or even loosen rates on a meeting by meeting basis based on how the economic data comes in. But as I pointed out yesterday, even after an initial move higher in interest rates, Fed policy will continue to be accommodative. Fisher confirmed that “We will be moving from an ultra-expansionary monetary policy to an extremely expansionary monetary policy.” The big news this morning was the CPI data which are expected to show a slight increase from last month. Oil continues to keep inflation under control, and the markets will be watching for any indication that inflation is starting to creep back into the US economy as that is one of the criteria or ‘data points’ which the Fed leaders have been pointing to in order to start the tightening cycle. The pound sterling was one currency which had trouble appreciating vs. the US dollar overnight as investors questioned the timing and even the direction the next move by the BOE. Traders were nervous going into this morning’s CPI report, selling the pound sterling on thoughts that inflation data would show prices increases remain subdued. Oil has been pushing higher over the past several days as the dollar has continued to slide. But brent crude fell a bit in early morning trading after the China flash PMI dipped below 50 to 49.2 in March. A reading of 50 or better indicates expansion, while a drop below that shows contraction. The report supports calls for more monetary easing from China’s leaders in Beijing. The poor PMI data may also weigh on the commodity currencies of AUD and NZD which have been experiencing a nice rally since last week. The Aussie dollar was making a run at .80 cents up until the news out of China halted its progress. And we will let Chuck put the cherry on top of today’s Pfennig with some thoughts from down in Florida: Well, I read what Chris had to say yesterday, about the currency rally while Chuck’s on vacation, and thought, shoot, if enough currency holders thought that might work, they might look to take up a collection to keep me on vacation! I sure wouldn’t have a problem with that! I guess the Big Boss, Frank Trotter might see some problems with that idea, so to keep him happy, and to keep my job, I guess I had better step away from the vehicle here, slowly, and just walk away. But oh what a relief it has been, eh? You know, late last year, when the Fed had made their decision to bring their 5 years of bond buying to an end, I said then that we would experience a liquidity crisis in the coming months, and by the time summer ends in 2015, the Fed would be looking to return to the bond buying table. Well, looky what I found yesterday in the Daily Reckoning www.dailyreckoning.com : “Wall Street hasn’t struggled to place so many corporate loans at once since credit seized up in 2007.” Uh-Oh, looks like it’s getting legs under it. the liquidity crisis that would come from a credit squeeze that is. So, that’s my view from the cheap seats. Thank you and have a great day! Currencies today 3/24/15. American Style: A$ .7915, kiwi .7678, C$ .8029, euro 1.1013, sterling 1.4962, Swiss $ 1.0483. European Style: rand 11.8127, krone 7.8064, SEK 8.4445, forint 275.31, zloty 3.7392, koruna 24.89, RUB 57.74, yen 119.27, sing 1.3614, HKD 7.7543, INR 62.238, China 6.1398, pesos 14.8655, BRL 3.10, Dollar Index 96.871, Oil $47.92, 10-year 1.89%, Silver $16.99, Platinum $1,144.50, Palladium $769.98, and Gold. $1,193.10Cold and rainy start to the morning and the rain is supposed to remain for a couple of days. I’m finally getting back into ‘work mode’ after spending quite a few days away from the office on separate business/pleasure trips. Spent spring break down in Cabo San Lucas with my wife and daughter and a couple of her friends – was a great trip! We actually got to see some grey whales surfacing right from the beach which was VERY cool. But enough of my travel stories, going to be another busy day on the desk and the markets are already starting to move on the CPI data. I’ll hit the send button and get this out the door. I hope everyone has a Terrific Tuesday, and thanks for reading the Pfennig.Chris Gaffney, CFA President EverBank World Markets
— J.S.: Where do you see the best opportunities to make money? L.J.: That depends on what you mean by “best.” In the resource space, the safest bets are the profitable producers with leverage to the trends unfolding. The biggest gains are in exploration companies that may deliver major discoveries. These are potential 10-baggers and well beyond. (A 10-bagger is a stock that rises 1,000%.) The sweet spot in between are the developers building high-margin mines; they’ve gotten beyond the risky business of exploration, but are not yet recognized as profitable producers. That makes this sub-sector a relatively low-risk hunting ground for five-baggers. J.S.: What about a great contrarian investing opportunity? L.J.: If you want the best contrarian resource play today, it’s hands down uranium. It’s absolutely hated. And it just ticked up from a multi-year low. Trump is sounding pro-nuke, and share prices have rallied, despite the uranium market remaining in surplus. We have one uranium play in International Speculator that’s up almost 40% over the last month. It’s super high-grade, in a mine-friendly jurisdiction, and highly responsive to higher uranium prices. I can’t say when we’ll see those higher prices, but there are mines shutting down and about 60 new plants under construction around the world, so it’s very much a “when, not if” question. J.S.: Thanks, Louis, for taking the time to chat with me today. We’ll touch base in the new year to see how your theses are evolving. Editor’s note: This year, Louis and his team have handed subscribers several huge wins… In fact, they’ve taken profits on 21 stocks that doubled or better. Louis is able to hit these kinds of home runs because he learned from the best. You see, Louis is a protégé of Casey Research founder Doug Casey. And one of the most important things Doug’s shared with Louis is his secret method for finding the world’s best small resource stocks. For years, Doug didn’t share this method with many other people. But he recently pulled back the curtain on his proprietary moneymaking approach in an eye-opening presentation. You can watch that video for FREE right now by clicking here. As you’ll see, Doug used this same method to bag incredible gains. We’re talking returns north of 5,000% and more. Click here to see how you can put the “Casey Method” to work today. By The Time Obama Hands Over The Keys, It Will Be TOO Late… We’ve got evidence — from an ex-advisor to the CIA — that 19 days before Donald Trump takes the Oath of Office, it will already be too late to “fix” America. How so? For the last year, one domino after another has fallen… but this last one to hit is the final straw. And the “trigger event” that will make it happen hits at exactly 12:01 a.m. on January 1st. Once it does, there’s nothing anyone can do to stop it. Find out why – and what this “trigger event” is – by clicking this link… Recommended Links In every single stock chart posted here… …you’ll see the same pattern repeat over and over. IF… trade volume spikes in one of the 81 “dark markets” only Wall Street can trade on… THEN… in the days following, the stock price rises on the Nasdaq, Dow or New York Stock Exchange. We identified this pattern in several extraordinary stock gains going back at least as far as seven years. Here’s how YOU can profit from it… Editor’s note: Today, we have something special for you. Instead of our usual market commentary, we have a brand-new interview with Louis James, editor of International Speculator and Casey Resource Investor. Below, Louis discusses what he says will be the biggest themes of 2017…a serious threat most investors are overlooking…and today’s “hands down” best contrarian resource play. We hope you find this interview as insightful as we did. Justin Spittler: Louis, what big themes do you see playing out next year? Louis James: The Trump Honeymoon period will turn into the Trump Presidential Reality Show, and that will shake things up substantially. The talking heads on TV are all aflutter with Trump’s latest tweets and gaffs, but the nominations and appointments show that he’s serious about changing things in Washington. We’ve got a school voucher advocate tapped for Education, a global warming skeptic tapped for the EPA, a minimum wage critic for Labor, and so on. This is all generally seen as pro-business, and the mainstream U.S. markets are responding positively, the USD is rallying, and safe-haven assets like gold are retreating. This will not last. It’s hard to say how many of these people will survive the nomination process, and it’s safe to say that anything they do will be compromised and watered down by the political process. Rather than draining the swamp, history tells us that it’s far more likely that Trump will wander into the swamp and get lost, even as he continues dividing the country. But even if he does push change through, and those changes are for the better, it will cause major systemic shocks, prompting huge market volatility. The Trump Honeymoon period may last well into Q1 2017, but it won’t last long once he’s been in office for a while and either starts making changes or fails to do so. Today’s market optimism is naive. Anytime a market hits record highs on naive optimism, there’s a correction ahead. And anytime a market is oversold on misplaced pessimism (gold), it’s a buying opportunity. On the other hand, the easiest thing to get Congress to do is to spend money, and Trump is heading for office with a mandate to spend trillions on infrastructure and defense. This is extremely bullish for industrial metals and other minerals. We are diversifying accordingly. The fall of Matteo Renzi is more important than markets seem to realize. The rise of populism around the world, but especially in the artificially cobbled-together EU, is destabilizing. There is a very real possibility that the December 4 vote in Italy may result in Italy leaving the EU. After the Brexit vote, that could lead to further disintegration, with major economic shocks to follow. This will play out over the year ahead, and it’s very bullish for precious metals. There’s more, especially in Asia, where the Chinese have just seized a U.S. drone, but these two are the main drivers I see for 2017. J.S.: Very interesting. What do you think will be the biggest threats to people’s wealth next year? L.J.: Betting on blue chips is extremely risky at this point. The Honeymoon period has unleashed a flood of “irrational exuberance” on Wall Street, with major indices hitting new record highs. When the honeymoon is over, I expect a sharp reversal. It may not be a major crash, like 1929, but a substantial retreat that will hurt today’s momentum chasers badly. Now more than ever, I think it’s vital to be a contrarian investor. –