Total’s chief executive Patrick Pouyanne has warned that Saudi Arabia’s social and economic reforms might be a bit too ambitious, and might not go as smoothly, not to mention as quickly, as their proponents seem to believe. Speaking at an event in London, Pouyanne said “You don’t change into a secular regime just like that,” reminiscing about the situation in Russia after the toppling of its last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbatchev. Chaos, Pouyanne said, was the first stage of the transition. The Saudi Vision 2030 program,…
Just as Nigeria has started to pump more than 1.8 million bpd of crude oil for two consecutive months, the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA)—the militant group responsible for most of last year’s attacks on Nigeria’s oil infrastructure—returned to the scene with a gruesome message on its website, warning oil companies of a “brutish, brutal and bloody” end of the ceasefire in the oil-rich Delta. “Message to the Oil Companies; Our next line of operation will not be like the 2016 campaign which we operated successfully…
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Three weeks ago the Power of the Pattern shared what looked like a great opportunity in the chart below…See original post HERE
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At the time we shared that Premium and Sector members owned this position and if you wanted to know what this opportunity was, to send us an email and we would get you the answer. The response to the quiz was very large (Thanks for all your emails) and we wanted to update those people that requested the info, on how this opportunity was doing.
We shared with readers that Hawaiian Electric (HE) looked to be creating a sweet opportunity. Below updates the performance since the quiz.
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Some feel utilities can be boring. When a multi-year ascending triangle forms, great opportunities can be found, even in the utility sector!
Below updates the pattern on HE since the quiz-
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Ascending triangles break to the upside two-thirds of the time and remain one of our favorite bull market patterns to play. HE continues to push higher and the measured move on this pattern suggests that it has more room to run to the upside.
In the future when we publish a “What would you do with this opportunity” post, feel free to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get you the answer as soon as we can. If you would like to stay abreast of these patterns as they are taking place, we would be honored if you were a Premium or Sectors member.
Why you see chart pattern analysis with brief commentary: There is a ton of news and opinions about markets and stocks that make the decision-making process more difficult than it needs to be.
I believe the Power of the chart Pattern provides all you need to see what is taking place in an asset and determine the action to take.
This approach has worked well for me and our clients and I encourage you to test it for yourself.
Or, send an email if you would like to see sample research and take me up on a trial of my premium or weekly research where I provide actionable alerts on breakouts and reversals in broad market indices, sectors, commodities, the miners and select individual stocks
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Out of all the stories of harassment, abuse and victimization of women that have emerged since the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke last month, this one is possibly the most repugnant.
To wit, the New York Post reported Friday that a former portfolio manager at Soros Fund Management, a firm founded by Billionaire investor George Soros, sadistically abused and victimized women in a Manhattan penthouse sex dungeon – even beating one woman so brutally that one of her breast implants flipped.
Howie Rubin, 62, a former Bear Stearns trader who was featured in the best-selling Michael Lewis novels “Liar’s Poker” and “The Big Short,” was accused in a $27 million lawsuit filed in Brooklyn federal court of luring women to his sex dungeon, abusing them, then trying to silence them with settlements and NDAs.
Rubin reportedly rented a lavish Metropolitan Tower pad in Midtown to indulge in brutal sex with women whom he paid between $2000 and $5000 per session, according to the suit filed Thursday.
The three unidentified plaintiffs in the case – including two Playboy Playmates – claim the married father raped and beat them to the point that they needed extensive medical attention, court papers say.
After luring the women to the $8 million penthouse, they were shown to a side room with chains, and sex toys along with other BDSM equipment. There, they were gagged, tied up and viciously beaten by Rubin. One woman complained that he punched her in the head.
“I’m going to rape you like I rape my daughter,” Rubin allegedly barked during one of the purported beatings.
In one session, he beat one of the women’s “breasts so badly that her right implant flipped,” the papers state. The former Bear Stearns trader paid her $20,000 to repair the damage.
One plaintiff was tied up, gagged and shocked with a cattle prod in her groin before Rubin allegedly raped her, according to the filing.
Two unnamed female fixers and a lawyer abetted Rubin’s abusive sexual romps by coaxing women into signing NDAs.
The trio sought to “cover up Rubin’s sexual misconduct and criminal abuse of women and to serve as a cover for his wide-ranging human trafficking scheme,” wrote Balestriere.
A lawyer for one of the women blasted Rubin’s alleged conduct.
“While arrogance and self-import may convince certain men otherwise, neither money nor power gives any person the right to victimize a woman,” said Jeremy Saland.
Rubin declined to comment to the post. Of course, Soros recently made headlines for donating most of the assets held by Soros management – which had been converted into a family office for the Soros family – to his “Open Society” foundation. The gift was worth a reported $18 billion.
As we pointed out way back in 2009, Rubin is described in Michael Lewis in “Liar’s Poker” as the man who (in the days before Kerviel and other next gen “superstar” traders) had “lost more money on a single trade than anyone on the history of Wall Street.”
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In what was otherwise a mediocre jobs report, in which the establishment survey reported that a lower than expected 261K jobs were added to the post-Hurricane economy, the biggest surprise was not in the Establishment survey, but the household, where t…
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Oil Trading Analyst, Crude Oil (Physical), Commodities, Asia – Singapore Responsibilities • Collect and summarize market information relevant to …
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Investors must always be comfortable with the idea that the market bears risk.
Sometimes this risk flies under the radar and isn’t as pronounced as it probably should be. However, as Visual Capitalists’s Jeff Desjardins notes, in other cases, the topic of risk can catapult to the forefront of discussion. There can be specific events or signals unfolding that give investors the jitters – and during these times, investors will make adjustments to their portfolios to avoid getting caught off guard.
HOW BILLIONAIRES ARE HEDGING
In the following infographic from Sprott Physical Bullion Trusts, we explain the particular geopolitical risks that have the world’s most elite investors concerned today – and what moves they are making to protect themselves from black swans.
Courtesy of: Visual Capitalist
The world isn’t predictable at the best of times – but after unanticipated occurrences such as Brexit and the election of Trump in 2016, the geopolitical tea leaves are getting even more difficult to read.
The world is approaching a major inflection point and the intense amount of global angst we’re experiencing now stems from deep, structural forces that have been building over decades.
– Reva Goujon, VP Global Analysis of Stratfor
According to Reva Goujon, VP Global Analysis of Stratfor, we are experiencing the perfect storm of “-isms”: nationalism, nativism, protectionism, and isolationism.
As a result, the following potential geopolitical risks are at the top of the agenda for experts and top investors:
Unpredictability of the Trump administration, government inaction, a trade war with China, and NAFTA renegotiations
Economic nationalism, further “exits” from the EU, Russia and China seeking to assert authority, terrorism, escalation of Middle East conflicts, and North Korea’s nuclear ambitions
ELITE INVESTORS TAKING ACTION
With these risks perceived to be on the table, some of the world’s most elite investors like Ray Dalio and Warren Buffett are taking action. Here’s what they are up to:
Ray Dalio, the founder of the world’s largest hedge fund, Bridgewater Associates, had this to say:
When it comes to assessing political matters we are very humble.
-Ray Dalio, Aug 2017
Dalio’s advice: to stay liquid, stay diversified, and not be overly exposed to any particular economic outcomes. He also recommends a 5%-10% position in gold.
The Oracle of Omaha has a similar but very different perspective.
No one can tell you when these traumas will occur – not me, not Charlie, not economists, not the media.
– Warren Buffett, Feb 2017
With this in mind and with equities expensive, the seasoned value investor holds onto piles of cash to prepare for potential buying opportunities. Berkshire Hathaway now has $99.7 billion in undeployed cash, the most in the company’s history.
Billionaire hedge fund manager Bill Ackman took a position in “out of the money” call options on the VIX.
This will protect against stock market risk.
– Bill Ackman, Aug 2017
The billionaire founder of Greenlight Capital says he is keeping gold as a top position.
The (Trump) administration comes with a high degree of uncertainty.
– David Einhorn, Feb 2017
Lastly, the famous value investor Howard Marks warned his clients to move into lower-risk investments to protect against future losses.
The uncertainties are unusual in terms of number, scale and insolubility in areas including secular economic growth; the impact of central banks; interest rates and inflation; political dysfunction; geopolitical trouble spots; and the long-term impact of technology.
– Howard Marks, July 2017
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The U.S. mainstream media finally has its ‘smoking gun’ on Russia-gate – incriminating information from a junior Trump campaign adviser – but a closer look reveals serious problems with the ‘evidence’…
Russia-gate special prosecutor Robert Mueller has turned up the heat on President Trump with the indictment of Trump’s former campaign manager for unrelated financial crimes and the disclosure of a guilty plea from a low-level foreign policy adviser for lying to the FBI.
While longtime Republican fixer Paul Manafort, who helped guide Trump’s campaign to the GOP nomination in summer 2016, was the big name in the news on Monday, the mainstream media focused more on court documents related to George Papadopoulos, a 30-year-old campaign aide who claims to have heard about Russia possessing Hillary Clinton’s emails before they became public on the Internet, mostly via WikiLeaks.
While that would seem to bolster the Russia-gate narrative – that Russian intelligence “hacked” Democratic emails and President Vladimir Putin ordered the emails be made public to undermine Clinton’s campaign – the evidentiary thread that runs through Papadopoulos’s account remains tenuous.
That’s in part because his credibility has already been undermined by his guilty plea for lying to the FBI and by the fact that he now has a motive to provide something the prosecutors might want in exchange for leniency. Plus, there is the hearsay and contested quality of Papadopoulos’s supposed information, some of which already has turned out to be false.
According to the court documents, Papadopoulos got to know a professor of international relations who claimed to have “substantial connections with Russian government officials,” with the professor identified in press reports as Joseph Mifsud, a little-known academic associated with the University of Stirling in Scotland.
The first contact supposedly occurred in mid-March 2016 in Italy, with a second meeting in London on March 24 when the professor purportedly introduced Papadopoulos to a Russian woman whom the young campaign aide believed to be Putin’s niece, an assertion that Mueller’s investigators determined wasn’t true.
Trump, who then was under pressure for not having a foreign policy team, included Papadopoulos as part of a list drawn up to fill that gap, and Papadopoulos participated in a campaign meeting on March 31 in Washington at which he suggested a meeting between Trump and Putin, a prospect that other senior aides reportedly slapped down.
The ‘Email’ Breakfast
But Papadopoulos continued his outreach to Russia, according to the court documents, which depict the most explosive meeting as an April 26 breakfast in London with the professor (Mifsud) supposedly saying he had been in Moscow and “learned that the Russians had obtained ‘dirt’ on then-candidate Clinton” and possessed “thousands of emails.” Mainstream press accounts concluded that Mifsud must have been referring to the later-released emails.
However, Mifsud told The Washington Post in an email last August that he had “absolutely no contact with the Russian government” and described his ties to Russia as strictly in academic fields.
In an interview with the U.K. Daily Telegraph after Monday’s disclosures, Mifsud acknowledged meeting with Papadopoulos but disputed the contents of the conversations as cited in the court papers. Specifically, he denied knowing anything about emails containing “dirt” on Clinton and called the claim that he introduced Papadopoulos to a “female Russian national” as a “laughingstock.”
According to the Telegraph interview, Mifsud said he tried to put Papadopoulos in touch with experts on the European Union and introduced him to the director of a Russian think tank, the Russian International Affairs Council.
It was the latter contact that the court papers presumably referred to in saying that on May 4, the Russian contact with ties to the foreign ministry wrote to Papadopoulos and Mifsud, reporting that ministry officials were “open for cooperation,” a message that Papadopoulos forwarded to a senior campaign official, asking whether the contacts were “something we want to move forward with.”
However, even an article in The New York Times, which has aggressively pushed the Russia-gate “scandal” from the beginning, noted the evidentiary holes that followed from that point.
The Times’ Scott Shane wrote: “A crucial detail is still missing: Whether and when Mr. Papadopoulos told senior Trump campaign officials about Russia’s possession of hacked emails. And it appears that the young aide’s quest for a deeper connection with Russian officials, while he aggressively pursued it, led nowhere.”
Shane added, “the court documents describe in detail how Mr. Papadopoulos continued to report to senior campaign officials on his efforts to arrange meetings with Russian officials, … the documents do not say explicitly whether, and to whom, he passed on his most explosive discovery – that the Russians had what they considered compromising emails on Mr. Trump’s opponent.
“J.D. Gordon, a former Pentagon official who worked for the Trump campaign as a national security adviser and helped arrange the March 31 foreign policy meeting, said he had known nothing about Mr. Papadopoulos’ discovery that Russia had obtained Democratic emails or of his prolonged pursuit of meetings with Russians.”
Reasons to Doubt
If prosecutor Mueller had direct evidence that Papadopoulos had informed the Trump campaign about the Clinton emails, you would assume that the proof would have been included in Monday’s disclosures. Further, since Papadopoulos was flooding the campaign with news about his Russian outreach, you might have expected that he would say something about how helpful the Russians had been in publicizing the Democratic emails.
The absence of supporting evidence that Papadopoulos conveyed his hot news on the emails to campaign officials and Mifsud’s insistence that he knew nothing about the emails would normally raise serious questions about Papadopoulos’s credibility on this most crucial point.
At least for now, those gaps represent major holes in the storyline. But Official Washington has been so desperate for “proof” about the alleged Russian “election meddling” for so long, that professional skepticism has been unwelcome in most media outlets.
There is also another side of the story that rarely gets mentioned in the U.S. mainstream media: that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has repeatedly denied that he received the two batches of purloined Democratic emails – one about the Democratic National Committee and one about Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta – from the Russians. While it is surely possible that the Russians might have used cutouts to pass on the emails, Assange and associates have suggested that at least the DNC emails came from a disgruntled insider.
Also, former U.S. intelligence experts have questioned whether at least one batch of disclosed emails could have come from an overseas “hack” because the rapid download speed is more typical of copying files locally onto a memory stick or thumb drive.
What I was told by an intelligence source several months ago was that Russian intelligence did engage in hacking efforts to uncover sensitive information, much as U.S. and other nations’ intelligence services do, and that Democratic targets were included in the Russian effort.
But the source said the more perplexing question was whether the Kremlin then ordered release of the data, something that Russian intelligence is usually loath to do and something that in this case would have risked retaliation from the expected winner of the 2016 election, Hillary Clinton.
But such questions and doubts are clearly not welcome in the U.S. mainstream media, most of which has embraced Mueller’s acceptance of Papadopoulos’s story as the long-awaited “smoking gun” of Russia-gate.
Submitted by RanSquawk
The BLS will release the October Employment Report at 08:30am ET on Friday, November 3. The Street is looking for a veritable surge in hiring following the hurricane-related disruption last month sent monthly payrolls to the first negative print in 7 years. Analysts also expect wage growth to continue rising: Median forecasts looks for 310k nonfarm payroll jobs, with average hourly earnings rising rise to 2.7% Y/Y
- Non-farm Payrolls: 310k (120k to 420k, Prev. -33k)
- Unemployment Rate: 4.2% (4.1% to 4.4%, Prev. 4.2%)
- Average Earnings Y/Y: 2.7% (2.5% to 3.1% , Prev. 2.9%)
- Average Earnings M/M: 0.2% (-0.1% to 0.8% , Prev. 0.5%)
- Average Work Week Hours: 34.4hrs (33.4 to 34.6hrs, Prev. 34.4hrs)
- Private Payrolls: 303k (155k to 405k, Prev. -40k)
- Manufacturing Payrolls: 15k (5k to 34k, Prev. -1k)
- Government Payrolls: No forecasts (Prev. 7k)
- U6 Unemployment Rate: No forecasts (Prev. 8.3%)
- Labour Force Participation: No forecasts (Prev. 63.1%)
Headline nonfarm payrolls have averaged 148k in the first nine-months of 2017, lower than the 200k average in the first nine-months of 2016, and below the 187k 2016 average. The trend rate has been hit, in recent months, due to disruptions caused by hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. The three-month rolling averages has now slipped to 91k on the back of last month’s 33k decline in payroll growth.
POTENTIAL REVISIONS TO SEPTEMBER DATA:
While the consensus view expects the October data to show a bounce back, Societe Generale warns “historical experience after Hurricane Katrina showed that hard-hit industries struggled to spring back in the following month, and that phenomenon may have repeated this October,” adding that “given the extent of the damage and flooding from Irma and Harvey, there may have been some lingering weather effects that hindered job growth.”
Analysts will be keeping an eye on September’s data following the shock decline of 33k payrolls (consensus looked for 80k payrolls to be added). While most of the drop was due to the leisure and hospitality sectors, the professional and business services sector printed just 13k payroll additions, which SocGen says is 35k below the January to August average.
In its latest policy statement, the FOMC noted that “labor market has continued to strengthen,” and going forward “labor market conditions will strengthen somewhat further.” However, it once again reiterated that “market-based measures of inflation compensation remain low.”
The latest Employment Cost Index data for Q3 – which tends to correlate quite well with wage growth analysts say – bodes well. But although the ECI shows compensation is rising, it has failed to spark any meaningful inflation. “Lower unemployment has not yet fed through to a meaningful acceleration in wage growth,” Capital Economics writes. “Further ahead though, with labour market conditions exceptionally tight, payroll growth will trend lower, and earnings growth may begin to rise more markedly.”
CLAIMS: Initial jobless claims were rising going into the September report, on a four-week moving-average basis; but since then, they have been ticking down. The latest data puts the four-week moving-average at 232.5k, down from 267k going into the September report. “Increasingly, it appears that the trend in claims has declined to a new low, consistent with the strengthening in surveys of labor demand,” writes Pantheon Macroeconomics. “Falling claims boost consumers’ sentiment, and usually are associated with falling unemployment and a rising quits rate. The labor market continues to tighten.”
ADP: The ADP reported 235k payrolls were added to the US economy in October, greater than the consensus view which was looking for 200k. The September data, however, was revised lower slightly. “The ADP payroll private employment measure is not the best predictor of the official non-farm payroll employment at the best of times and is even less useful in the aftermath of the hurricane disruption. Accordingly, it’s probably best to ignore the data,” Capital Economics says. “The ADP measure never accounted for the full disruption of the hurricanes in September so, unsurprisingly, the bounce-back in October was minimal. But looking at September and October together, ADP employment increased by a cumulative 345,000,” which suggests that the official NFP number could come in around 378k.
CHALLENGER JOB CUTS: The survey saw US employers announcing just under 30k job cuts in October, 3% lower than October 2016, and employers have now signalled some 25% fewer job cuts than in the same period last year, Challenger said. The 2017 total YTD stands around 25% lower than the same time last year, the lowest 10-month total since 1997. “Companies are currently holding on to their workforces, but this may be the calm before the storm,” Challenger CEO said. “Another downturn could be on the horizon for early to mid-2018 and with it, the large-scale layoff announcements that typically follow. Adding to this is the possibility that global factors, including Brexit, could usher in a recession,” Challenger added.
BUSINESS SURVEYS: Markit’s flash composite PMI for October suggests that private sector job conditions saw “a solid increase supported by the steepest rise in payroll numbers at manufacturing companies since June 2015.” However, for the dominant services sector, job creation eased in the month. Nevertheless, Markit noted that “There were also positive developments in terms of staff hiring and business optimism during October, suggesting that private sector firms are gearing up for sustained growth in coming months.” It is slightly more difficult to use the ISM indices to gauge the health of the labour market this month, given the non-manufacturing release is scheduled for release on the day of the NFP release. However, the employment sub-index slipped by 0.5pts, though comfortably remains in growth territory.
WHAT BANKS DESKS ARE SAYING:
- Barclays: We expect the October employment report to show a strong rebound in hiring after September data were suppressed by hurricane-related effects. At a decline of 33k last month, we estimate that the storms reduced growth in payroll employment by about 200k. Looking ahead to the October report, we expect nonfarm payrolls to rise by 325k. Our forecast is consistent with a quick retracement of storm-related effects, which is consistent with the signal from initial jobless claims and, indirectly, from other activity data that showed a quicker-than-expected bounce back in activity. Nearly all of this improvement should come in private sector payrolls and we expect private payrolls to rise by 320k, with the remainder coming in government payrolls. Within private payrolls, we look for a significant rebound in services employment and, in particular, leisure and hospitality employment. Elsewhere in the report, we look for the unemployment rate to hold steady at 4.2% and for average hourly earnings to rise by 0.2% m/m (2.6% y/y). We view at least part of last month’s 0.5% m/m rise in hourly earnings as distorted by storm-related factors that either held back hours for salaried employees or reduced the numbers of hourly workers from the survey.
- BMO: We estimate Hurricanes Irma and Harvey chopped nonfarm payrolls by roughly 160,000 in September. This estimate (based on an equation that includes the number of workers absent due to bad weather) is just shy of the BLS’s tally of actual job losses in Florida and Texas last month (-135,000) relative to this year’s trend. Most workers likely returned to work in October, while other persons were hired for reconstruction efforts. Adding an assumed 160,000 rebound in payrolls to the average gain in the first eight months of the year (just over 170,000) yields a 330,000 increase in October following a 33,000 decline in September. The leisure and hospitality sector should recover most of the 111,000 jobs that were lost in September. Some payback for the astounding 906,000 increase in household survey jobs last month, coupled with a likely pullback in the participation rate, should hold the jobless rate at a 16-year low of 4.2%. Average hourly earnings will simmer down after September’s result (0.5%) was juiced by the loss of low-paying jobs in the hospitality sector. A 0.2% monthly advance would trim the yearly rate to 2.8%, while maintaining a slow upward trend.
- Capital Economics: We are forecasting a huge 350,000 rebound in payroll employment in October, as the impact of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma is reversed. State level data show that payroll employment fell by 130,000 in Florida and by almost 10,000 in Texas in September, compared to average monthly gains of close to 20,000 for both states. If that shortfall were fully reversed in October, that would add 200,000 to payroll employment. All the indications are that the underlying pace of payroll gains has remained fairly robust. The Markit employment PMIs point to private payrolls expanding by close to 200,000. All told, we are pencilling in a 350,000 rebound in payroll employment, following the 33,000 fall in September. Even so, the unemployment rate probably held steady at 4.2% since the household employment measure is unlikely to rise much following its surge last month. Finally, wage growth was boosted last month as the hurricanes hit low-paid employment hardest. That effect will be unwound in October.
- Deutsche Bank: With September’s soft CPI print providing a little more ammunition to the Fed’s doves, employment data is crucial to the Fed’s narrative for continued gradual rate hikes. We are expecting a sharp rebound in payroll growth (+250k forecast vs. -33k previous), supported by a dissipation of hurricane effects; low jobless claims during the survey week; and robust supporting evidence of solid job growth from the ISM employment subcomponents. However, there is considerable uncertainty around this expectation. Indeed, after Hurricane Katrina, which exhibited a similar plunge in job growth in the September 2005 print, it took until November 2005 for job growth to return to its earlier trend. Within the other details of the report, average hourly earnings growth should slow (0.1% m-o-m vs 0.5%), which could lower the year-over-year growth rate to 2.6%, down from the post-crisis high of 2.9% in September. This retracement is due both to hurricane effects, which we believe boosted September average hourly earnings growth by at least 4bp, as well as other statistical regularities that we have noticed (e.g., bias tied to when the 12th falls within the survey week and how many work days there are in the month) that also point to a softer average hourly earnings print. We expect the unemployment rate to be unchanged (4.2%) at its lowest level since early 2001. Ahead of Friday’s report, we may potentially sharpen our expectations for job growth depending on ADP employment (+240 thousand vs +136 thousand) on Wednesday.
- HSBC: Nonfarm payrolls fell 33,000 in September. State level figures show that payroll employment in Florida fell by 127,000. This largely reflected the effects of Hurricane Irma, as many people were unable to work because their workplaces were not open or because they had temporarily been evacuated from their regions. The majority of these workers will have returned to their jobs in October and should therefore add to overall national increase in payrolls for the month. State level figures for Texas suggest that there will be a similar, but much smaller, impact from persons returning to work following Hurricane Harvey. We expect that nonfarm payrolls rose 300,000 in October. This month’s release may shed some light on whether the sharp 0.5% rise in average hourly earnings in September was partly distorted by the hurricanes. The September report showed a sharp drop in food services employment which is likely to be reversed in October. Since average wages in the food service industry are lower than the national average, the temporary decline in jobs in this industry may have indirectly boosted the overall average for hourly wages. We expect that average hourly earnings were unchanged m-o-m in October. The y-o-y rate of increase could fall to 2.5%, down from 2.9% in September. In addition, we forecast the unemployment rate rose to 4.3% in October from 4.2% in September.
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Former interim DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile confirmed what many widely suspected in an essay published in Politico today where she called out former DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for unfairly rigging the 2016 primary against Bernie Sanders.
In her expose, Brazile described how the Clinton campaign siphoned money from state party chapters, and asserted her control over the DNC by making it financially reliant on her fundraising abilities, even describing the campaign’s actions as “essentially money laundering.”
The agreement—signed by Amy Dacey, the former CEO of the DNC, and Robby Mook with a copy to Marc Elias—specified that in exchange for raising money and investing in the DNC, Hillary would control the party’s finances, strategy, and all the money raised. Her campaign had the right of refusal of who would be the party communications director, and it would make final decisions on all the other staff. The DNC also was required to consult with the campaign about all other staffing, budgeting, data, analytics, and mailings.
Brazile’s revelations have revived conversations about whether the party has an obligation to ensure a fair primary (one judge who dismissed a lawsuit against the DNC suggested the organization is actually under no obligation to do so, even confirming that it showed a “palpable bias” toward Clinton).
Offering their two cents on the issue, a group of former Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign staffers chimed in on the debate, claiming that “corruption has plagued” the DNC for years and that the problem stretches far beyond the 2016 campaign, according to the Washington Free Beacon.
Saikat Chakrabarti, who was director of organizing strategy for the Sanders campaign and now runs a group aiming to change the Democratic Party, said he wasn’t surprised to hear the admission from Brazile.
“We all knew that the primary was rigged,” Chakrabarti said on behalf of Justice Democrats, a group he founded. “But the corruption that plagues the Democratic Party is bigger than one primary—it’s become a rot set at the very root of a party [that] claims to be for working people.”
Chakrabarti added that the Democratic Party is currently “devoid of message, devoid of money, and devoid of a winning strategy.”
“The people want a party that works for the people and wins,” he said. “We are sick and tired of wasting money on helping a party that wastes it through incompetence and corrupt negligence.”
Justice Democrats says it has seen an uptick in donations—$2,500 an hour—since Brazile’s admission broke on Thursday morning. The group currently has a slate of candidates running for office in 2018, many of them challenging Democratic incumbents.
Of course, despite Brazile’s sanctimonious posturing and her claims that she was ignorant of the control Clinton exerted over the party before taking over as interim chair last summer (Tom Perez has since been named permanent chair), leaked DNC emails revealed that she played a role in tilting the primary in Clinton’s favor by leaking debate questions and town hall topics to her one-time political ally.
Recent polling shows Bernie Sanders is presently the most popular politician in the country, and he’s an independent candidate. That’s hardly a coincidence. We didn’t need Brazile to tell us how Clinton effectively ran the DNC – the public has widely believed this for years.
The question now is: Will anything change?
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