IEHI Feed: The Hedge Fund Implode-o-Meter http://implode-explode.com/ Tracking the many faces of the global credit implosion. en-us iehi-feed-65451 Mon, 03 Aug 2020 15:47:48 GMT Trump Housing Crisis: 40 Million Americans Face Being Homeless http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-08-03_TrumpHousingCrisis40MillionAmericansFaceBeingHomeless.html iehi-feed-65449 Fri, 31 Jul 2020 22:30:59 GMT Gold powers to new record on weak US dollar and GDP; Cornered Fed http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-31_GoldpowerstonewrecordonweakUSdollarandGDPCorneredFed.html Gold rose on Friday to hit a new all-time high, as a sliding dollar and dire economic numbers from far and wide sparked a rush to safety in bullion. It was gold's best month since February 2016, and its fifth straight positive month... Spot gold gained 0.58% to trade at $1,970.81 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures settled 1% higher at $1,985.9, after earlier breaking above $2,000 for the first time on record.

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The dollar was on track for its biggest monthly drop in almost a decade...Safe-haven bullion has gained nearly 30% so far this year, propelled by low interest rates globally and widespread stimulus from central banks adding to support for the metal considered a refuge from inflation and currency debasement.

"With policy rates already at or even below the zero bound, support to gold prices will increasingly have to come from higher inflation, in our view," said BofA Global Research, which expects gold to hit $3,000 per ounce in the coming 18 months.

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Silver climbed 4.2% to $24.34 per ounce, on course for a monthly rise of about 33%, its largest on records going back to 1982, supported by investment and industrial demand.

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iehi-feed-65448 Tue, 28 Jul 2020 16:57:25 GMT COVID-19 RELIEF FRAUD ALERT! Florida Man Busted In $3.9M Scam http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-28_COVID19RELIEFFRAUDALERTFloridaManBustedIn39MScam.html iehi-feed-65440 Wed, 22 Jul 2020 19:06:11 GMT Gold futures blast forward to their highest since 2011; silver soars to highest finish since 2013 http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-22_Goldfuturesblastforwardtotheirhighestsince2011silversoarstohighe.html iehi-feed-65439 Wed, 22 Jul 2020 15:42:35 GMT After CEO's Passing, Prodigy RE Crowdfunding Network, Assemblaged CoWorking Go Dark http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-22_AfterCEOsPassingProdigyRECrowdfundingNetworkAssemblagedCoWorking.html In the month before he died, Rodrigo Niño led a daily meditation series over Zoom. Dressed in a different striped caftan each morning, a grey-bearded Niño led the early-morning sessions for viewers confined at home at the height of the pandemic in late April.

SEE ALSO: CIT Group's Chris Niederpruem on Taking the Helm of What He Helped Kickstart

Working off the teachings of consciousness guru Richard Rudd, Niño spoke about mortality, self-reflection, and the expanded self. "We forgot that we forgot that we don't know who we really are," he said on Day 16.

Less than two weeks later, Niño--once a luxury real estate broker to rich Latin Americans, then a pioneer peddling the wonders of crowdfunding, and finally the enlightened founder of The Assemblage, a center for the consciousness community in New York--passed away from melanoma cancer.

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When he died, the empire he'd built over two decades was crumbling. The assets he had amassed with his crowdfunding company, Prodigy Network, were facing financial ruin, he was facing a string of lawsuits, and The Assemblage had been reduced to a skeleton crew, with its staff furloughed, and members scattered by the pandemic.

The implosion of Niño's identity and the apparent implosion of Prodigy has left those thousands of investors in the dark over the fate of their investments.

Multiple investors, lawyers and Assemblage members have reached out to the company in the last several weeks, but they have heard nothing back. Both phone numbers on Prodigy's website are no longer working, The Assemblage ceased operations in June, and two of Prodigy's assets sold several days later at a loss.

It's a steep fall from the early days of Prodigy, which made waves as a pioneering crowdfunding platform, raising hundreds of millions of dollars. Within the space of a few years, Prodigy launched three AKA-branded hotels, two coworking properties for The Assemblage and a live-work hotel in Manhattan's hottest markets, including Nomad, the Financial District and Tribeca.

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iehi-feed-65437 Mon, 20 Jul 2020 19:03:44 GMT Mark Cuban says 2020 stock-market rally 'very similar' to tech bubble--'everybody's a genius' http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-20_MarkCubansays2020stockmarketrallyverysimilartotechbubbleeverybod.html iehi-feed-65436 Mon, 20 Jul 2020 16:04:26 GMT Caliber Home Loans Management Favors Kiddie Porn Peddlers Over AIME http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-20_CaliberHomeLoansManagementFavorsKiddiePornPeddlersOverAIME.html iehi-feed-65435 Mon, 20 Jul 2020 13:53:27 GMT Global Real Estate Investment Plunges Amid Covid Pandemic http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-20_GlobalRealEstateInvestmentPlungesAmidCovidPandemic.html Global real estate investment fell by 33% in the first half as the coronavirus pandemic battered economies and disrupted deals.

The Asia-Pacific region took the biggest hit, with volumes down 45% from the year-earlier period, because it was the first struck by the outbreak, according to a report from broker Savills Plc. Investment dropped by 36% in the Americas and 19% in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Investment is "expected to remain well below pre-pandemic levels for the rest of 2020 as investors wait for market clarity," Simon Hope, Savills head of global capital markets, said in a statement on Monday. "However, certain sectors are expected to outperform as investors focus on secure assets, namely logistics, residential and life sciences."

The global economy has been hammered by the pandemic, with the International Monetary Fund forecasting a 4.9% contraction this year. IMF chief economist Gita Gopinath has said the cumulative loss for the world economy this year and next as a result of the recession is expected to reach $12.5 trillion.

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iehi-feed-65434 Sun, 19 Jul 2020 20:10:07 GMT Here's What Everyone, Including Mary Trump, Gets Wrong About Donald Trump's Failed Response to COVID-19 http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-19_HeresWhatEveryoneIncludingMaryTrumpGetsWrongAboutDonaldTrumpsFai.html iehi-feed-65432 Fri, 17 Jul 2020 18:44:47 GMT AIME CEO Anthony Casa Takes Leave Of Absence http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-17_AIMECEOAnthonyCasaTakesLeaveOfAbsence.html iehi-feed-65429 Mon, 13 Jul 2020 19:29:45 GMT Crybaby Quicken Loans Executive And Wife Sues AIME CEO http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-13_CrybabyQuickenLoansExecutiveAndWifeSuesAIMECEO.html iehi-feed-65427 Fri, 10 Jul 2020 18:40:44 GMT New York Court Approves Resumed Investigation Into $10 Billion Cryptocurrency Created By A Presidential Candidate http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-10_NewYorkCourtApprovesResumedInvestigationInto10BillionCryptocurre.html The news comes at an awkward time for Brock Pierce, 39, the creator of the [Tether] cryptocurrency [and the Bitfinex exchange], who this week announced he was running for President of the United States. A representative of the New York State Attorney General says he "cannot confirm or deny that the investigation" includes Pierce.

In 2014, Pierce, who is running as an independent on a pro-technology platform, created the tether currency as a way for cryptocurrency investors to quickly enter and exit a position. Unlike bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, tether was meant to have a stable price, backed one-to-one by real U.S. dollars. But unlike traditional dollars, it can be moved instantly, while actually cashing out a crypto-asset using banks can take days, and many banks won't support the service at all.

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Officially, the case involves, BFXNA Inc. and BFXWW Inc., wholly-owned subsidiaries of iFinex, which operates the Bitfinex cryptocurrency exchange, and Tether Holdings Limited the holding company for Tether Limited, Tether Operations Limited, and Tether International Limited. Though Pierce is not mentioned in the opinion, he not only founded Tether in 2014, but is the co-founder of Block.One, behind the 11th largest cryptocurrency, EOS, valued at $900 million, and Blockchain Capital, one of the most influential venture capital firms in crypto.

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Specifically, the attorney general previously alleged that Bitfinex had handed over $850 million to third-party payments processor Crypto Capital Corp., based in Panama, to handle customers-withdrawal requests. When the company failed to hold up its end of the bargain the respondents allegedly hid the losses through unspecified machinations, leading some to wonder if they'd simply started printing new tether cryptocurrency without any backing.

At around this time, Tether changed the wording on its site to show that instead of every tether being backed by a U.S. dollar, they were "backed by Tether Holding's "reserves," which include unspecified currency, "cash equivalents," and "other assets and receivables from loans made by Tether [Holdings] to third parties," according to the opinion. In turn, the respondents also successfully managed to get the investigation halted, temporarily though it may have been.

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Perhaps counter-intuitively, since the stay was issued in September 2019, tether's market cap exploded from $4.1 billion to $10 billion today, in spite of the doubts about whether the currency was actually backed by dollars, perhaps giving credibility to Tether's value proposition. Also over that time though, a newer stablecoin, USDC, co-created by cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase and crypto tech firm Circle, has risen to a market cap of $1 billion today and an even newer competitor, DAI, backed by a wide range of collateral has risen to $190 million. A loss to Tether would almost certainly be a win for the competition, and vice-versa.

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iehi-feed-65426 Fri, 10 Jul 2020 18:02:53 GMT Insane New York Attorneys Gone Wild! http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-10_InsaneNewYorkAttorneysGoneWild.html iehi-feed-65422 Thu, 09 Jul 2020 22:11:49 GMT Why ‘safe haven' gold and the stock market are now moving the same direction http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-09_Whysafehavengoldandthestockmarketarenowmovingthesamedirection.html Chalk it up, in part, to opportunity costs. Efforts by global central banks to push down interest rates, which have fallen into negative territory in real, or inflation-adjusted terms, in the U.S. and are outright negative in many parts of the world, mean that investors who hold gold aren't missing out on the yield they would earn from holding bonds in more usual circumstances.

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"Firstly, central bank policy is a strong driver behind higher gold prices. Not only are official rates close to zero in a large number of countries, they will unlikely go up in our forecast horizon," Boele wrote.

Most central banks have announced quantitative easing, with the Federal Reserve embarking on unlimited QE and the Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank also implementing large programs. "This sounds like music to the ears of gold bugs as money floods into the market and currencies begin to decline," she said.

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"Now the psychological resistance of $1,800 per ounce has been surpassed. It seems that investors will only be satisfied if the former (intraday) peak in gold prices at $1,921 per ounce is reached and taken out. Above that, the important psychological level of $2,000 per ounce is within reach," she said.

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iehi-feed-65421 Thu, 09 Jul 2020 16:45:51 GMT New Homeowners Find Charred Human Skull In Backyard Fire Pit http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-09_NewHomeownersFindCharredHumanSkullInBackyardFirePit.html iehi-feed-65420 Thu, 09 Jul 2020 14:41:42 GMT Deutsche Bank hit with $150 million penalty for dealings with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-09_DeutscheBankhitwith150millionpenaltyfordealingswithsexoffenderJe.html According to the department, the bank's failings included not scrutinizing payments to Epstein's publicly alleged co-conspirators in sexually abusing young women; payments to Russian models; payments for women's school tuition, hotel and rent expenses; direct payments to numerous women with Eastern European surnames (which were consistent with prior public allegations of wrongdoing); settlement payments totaling over $7 million, as well as dozens of payments to law firms totaling over $6 million for apparent legal expenses for Epstein and his co-conspirators.

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"It was a critical mistake, no question. Mr. Epstein should have never been our client," Deutsche Bank CEO Christian Sewing said on CNBC Tuesday afternoon, noting that the bank's escalation process did not work in 2013. "This cannot happen and must not happen. I think we are in a far better place these days."

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iehi-feed-65419 Thu, 09 Jul 2020 01:09:18 GMT Robinhood's Secret Business Model Revealed: Let Sophisticated Firms Fleece Its Unsophisticated Retail Customers http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-08_RobinhoodsSecretBusinessModelRevealedLetSophisticatedFirmsFleece.html At the core of Robinhood's business is an incentive to encourage more trading. It does not charge fees for trading, but it is still paid more if its customers trade more. That's because it makes money through a complex practice known as "payment for order flow." Each time a Robinhood customer trades, Wall Street firms actually buy or sell the shares and determine what price the customer gets. These firms pay Robinhood for the right to do this, because they then engage in a form of arbitrage by trying to buy or sell the stock for a profit over what they give the Robinhood customer.

This practice is not new, and retail brokers such as E-Trade and Schwab also do it. But Robinhood makes significantly more than they do for each stock share and options contract sent to the professional trading firms, the filings show.

For each share of stock traded, Robinhood made four to 15 times more than Schwab in the most recent quarter, according to the filings. In total, Robinhood got $18,955 from the trading firms for every dollar in the average customer account, while Schwab made $195, the Alphacution analysis shows. Industry experts said this was most likely because the trading firms believed they could score the easiest profits from Robinhood customers.

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... at least part of Robinhood's success appears to have been built on a Silicon Valley playbook of behavioral nudges and push notifications, which has drawn inexperienced investors into the riskiest trading, according to an analysis of industry data and legal filings, as well as interviews with nine current and former Robinhood employees and more than a dozen customers. And the more that customers engaged in such behavior, the better it was for the company, the data shows.

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More than at any other retail brokerage firm, Robinhood's users trade the riskiest products and at the fastest pace, according to an analysis of new filings from nine brokerage firms by the research firm Alphacution for The New York Times.

In the first three months of 2020, Robinhood users traded nine times as many shares as E-Trade customers, and 40 times as many shares as Charles Schwab customers, per dollar in the average customer account in the most recent quarter. They also bought and sold 88 times as many risky options contracts as Schwab customers, relative to the average account size, according to the analysis.

This seems significantly worse than a casino...

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iehi-feed-65416 Tue, 07 Jul 2020 16:20:52 GMT Mortgage Industry Says Foreclosures Will Skyrocket In August http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-07_MortgageIndustrySaysForeclosuresWillSkyrocketInAugust.html iehi-feed-65414 Tue, 07 Jul 2020 01:59:41 GMT PPP: Relief went to hair salons, restaurants, law firms -- and some members of Congress http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-06_PPPReliefwenttohairsalonsrestaurantslawfirmsandsomemembersofCong.html After withering pressure from lawmakers, the federal government on Monday released data on hundreds of thousands of borrowers from the $660 billion Paycheck Protection Program -- the main relief vehicle for small and mid-size companies suffering from the pandemic lockdowns.

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Multiple members of Congress or their families benefited from the Paycheck Protection Program, the data shows.

They include Rep. Mike Kelly, a Republican from Pennsylvania who owns namesake car dealerships, received three loans ranging up to $1 million, according to the data. His spokesman said in a statement that Kelly is not involved in day-to-day operations and "was not part of the discussions between the business and the PPP lender."

As it was designed, the program provides potentially forgivable loans to businesses with fewer than 500 employees in order to keep their workforce on payroll. The program was so critical at its inception that a first round of funding dried up in less than two weeks and had to be replenished. But interest in the program largely dried up in recent weeks, as shifting rules and the inability of borrowers to come back for a second loan limited the number of small businesses willing or able to go through the application process.

As mentioned elsewhere, a business invested in by Nancy Pelosi's husband (at about an 8% stake) also got money.

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iehi-feed-65410 Mon, 06 Jul 2020 15:11:11 GMT Caliber Home Loans Slapped By NY AG For $17 Million http://hf-implode.com/viewnews/2020-07-06_CaliberHomeLoansSlappedByNYAGFor17Million.html