Friday, December 30, 2011

Petroplus, largest independent refiner and wholesaler in Europe suspending operations

Petroplus Holdings AG, is suspending operations at three plants as banks freeze a $1bn revolving loan facility.
Press copy from Petroplus about temporary shutdowns
Petroplus focuses on refining and currently owns and operates five refineries across Europe:
Coryton in the United Kingdom,
Antwerp in Belgium,
Petit Couronne in France,
Ingolstadt in Germany,
and Cressier in Switzerland.
refinery list above

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Somalia next to be attacked?

Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron has declared that Somalia is a so-called “failed state” and thus a threat to British interests, signaling what might be the next target in the global imperialistic crusade carried out under the guise of humanitarianism.

Iran Straight of Hormus update:

A senior Iranian lawmaker says the ongoing Velayat 90 naval drill aim to send a warning to the West that the Strait of Hormuz will be closed if Iran is threatened.
Iran's Navy ordered a helicopter from an unspecified foreign country to leave
the area of maneuvers it is conducting in the Persian Gulf, the semi-official Fars News Agency reported Monday. "The helicopter ignored the first two warnings but left the area after the third and severe warning," Fars quoted Rear Adm. Seyed Mahmoud Musavi, the deputy commander of operations for Iran's Navy, as saying. The incident occurred Sunday, according to Fars. Fars only described the helicopter as belonging to a foreign country outside the Middle East region.
Oil markets: Brent at $108.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

California pensions: there’s an 82% chance they will run out of money.

California’s pension system is living in a fantasy world where investment returns average 12.5% annually and there’s enough money for everyone. The largest union, CalPERS, has a 82% chance of a budget shortfall in the next 16 years.
Rhode Island: Cuts for the Already Retired
As cities, towns and counties struggle with fiscal pain, there has been speculation that they could shed their pension obligations in bankruptcy.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Portugal: Debt is our only weapon

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard at the Telegraph:
"We have an atomic bomb that we can use in the face of the Germans and the French: this atomic bomb is simply that we won't pay," said Pedro Nuno Santos, vice-president of the Socialist Party in the parliament.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Trustee Wants to Seize and Liquidate Even the Gold and Silver Bullion Stored Under Bailment for Customers From MF Global

Jesse's Cafe Americain
The bottom line is that apparently some warehouses and bullion dealers are not a safe place to store your gold and silver, even if you hold a specific warehouse receipt. In an oligarchy, private ownership is merely a concept, subject to interpretation and confiscation.
Here's Karl Denninger's take on the above story:
A warehouse receipt is not an unallocated, nebulous claim. It contains a serial number of one or more specific bars sitting in a warehouse. You are in fact charged a storage fee for the service of maintaining security over your property and you have had to tender payment in full as well. This is a bailment in any sense of the word and under any theory of law I've seen -- and yet now, suddenly, it is proposed that your property held under bailment by this institution can be seized and stolen to pay unallocated bankruptcy claims against the bankrupt company's estate! This sort of action turns the entire premises of private property and bailment on its ear! [blogger emphasis] NO -- and I repeat NO -- property held allegedly for your benefit by any third party anywhere is safe under this "theory" of the bankruptcy trustee. Yes, this includes something so simple as the money on deposit in your bank account.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Will silver regain its long-term value to gold?

priced in gold

Comment on a discussion about hacked drone in Iran

seek "Details of the hack have already appeared in the hacking circles. It was pretty simple (and simply brilliant.) It consisted of two jamming mechanisms. 1) Jammed primary communications link between drone and US controllers. This put the drone into a "go back home" mode. It's preprogrammed to fly back to a US controlled airport and automatically land on a long-term loss of communications. 2) (this is the fucking brilliant part) Using a known GPS vulnerability, a second set of jammers transmitted a replacement GPS signal that allowed Iran to skew the GPS-derived location at will (in essenence, transmitting their own localized GPS signal that results in incorrect, but controllable, positioning data.) The used #2 to make the drone think it was landing at its home base, when in reality it was landing in Iran. This is why the drone was in such good shape, it was executing a controlled landing in what it believed was friendly territory. Shame is the #2 vulnerability apparently was well known and documented years ago, and not corrected."

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Morgan Stanley to cut 1,600 jobs

(Reuters) - Morgan Stanley will cut 1,600 employees in the first quarter, the bank said on Thursday, as it trims costs in a difficult period for trading and banking revenue. The job cuts will come across all staff levels and geographic areas, spokesman Mark Lake said, including investment banking, trading and back-office functions. Morgan Stanley is one of the last big Wall Street banks to announce major job cuts as analysts have begun slashing fourth-quarter earnings estimates. Other banks, including Goldman Sachs Group Inc , JPMorgan Chase & Co , Bank of America Corp and Citigroup Inc have already outlined plans to cut thousands of jobs this year. Morgan Stanley had kept firings limited to several hundred underperforming financial advisers earlier in 2011, but is now extending the cuts to banking and trading.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Iran to practice closing Straight of Hormuz

From Reuters via Zerohedge:
A member of the Iranian parliament's National Security Committee said on Monday that the military was set to practise its ability to close the Gulf to shipping at the narrow Strait of Hormuz, the most important oil transit channel in the world, but there was no official confirmation. The legislator, Parviz Sarvari, told the student news agency ISNA: "Soon we will hold a military manoeuvre on how to close the Strait of Hormuz. If the world wants to make the region insecure, we will make the world insecure." Contacted by Reuters, a spokesman for the Iranian military declined to comment.

Sunday, December 11, 2011