On The Lookout

Sat, Jun 23, 2012 - 12:50pm

I have a little time this fine Saturday morning so I thought I would share some observations with you.

First of all, we have to talk about the open interest changes on Thursday. You remember Thursday, don't you? The day of the big beatdown? As an aside, how many times has this now happened in 2012 alone? Anytime The Bernank steps in front of a mic, the metals get crushed. What was last week...about the 7th time this has happened this year alone? At any rate, from the Comex close of Wednesday to the Comex close of Thursday, gold was down $50.30 and silver was down $1.55. As Ruprecht would say: "That's a lot". Let's keep in mind a couple of things here:

  1. Price declines when there are more sellers than buyers.
  2. There are two kinds of selling pressure. Long liquidation and naked short selling.
  3. When longs liquidate, they are closing an open position. This causes total open interest to decline.
  4. When naked shorts are added, this is opening a new position. This causes total open interest to rise.
  5. If you are to believe The Cartel Apologists and Disinformation Agents, then The Bullion Banks are simply benevolent market makers who add liquidity to the metals markets by taking the other side of these trades. They are the willing providers of paper metal when buyers initiate new longs AND they are the buyers on the other side of new, spec naked shorts.
  6. (This is, of course, true and the CoT and Bank Participation Reports bear this out. The problem with The Apologists is that they stop right there and fail to consider/comprehend that The Bullion Banking Cartel may have more nefarious aims as they serve their Fed/ECB/BoE/BoJ/SNB masters.)
  7. Since late February, The Cartels have been rapidly reducing their net short exposure in both gold and silver. For gold, The Cartel net short position has fallen from a ratio of 2.69:1 to a current (a/o last Tuesday) ratio of 2.08:1. That's a drop of 36%. In silver, the reduction is even more dramatic. On 2/24/12, The Cartel net short ratio was 2.32:1. As of last Tuesday, it now stands at 1.36:1. That's a drop of 73%.

So now, with these points in mind, let's assess the open interest changes from Thursday. For gold, while price was falling over $50, the total open interest change from Wednesday to Thursday was just 34 contracts. From this, what can we surmise? Clearly there were equal parts long liquidation and new shorting on Thursday. All of that selling pressure drove price down $50. The overall Cartel position was likely flat and the entire shift was within the "Large Spec" category where spec longs were dumped and spec shorts were added.

The $1.55 decline silver, on the other hand, was an entirely different event. While silver was falling, the total open interest grew by over 6,000 contracts and, at 127983, it stands at the highest level for all of 2012 and it's a level we haven't seen since last May! More on the implications of this in a minute but, first, what does this OI rise indicate?

Again, as pointed out above, a rising OI coupled with a falling price is an indicator of naked short selling. Having price fall 5% and OI rise 5% shows that the entire event was caused by new spec short selling, not long liquidation. How can I assume that it is the specs that are adding shorts and NOT The Silver Cartel? Re-read point #7 above. If this is the case, then Thursday put a significant dent in the remaining Cartel net short position.

As of last Tuesday, The Silver Cartel net short position was 16,954 contracts. They were short 64,401 and long 47,447. The difference is 16,954. (As an aside, per the latest Bank Participation Report, JPM was short 17,000 all by themselves. This means the rest of The Silver Cartel is already net flat.) So...IF Thursday's selloff was almost entirely caused by naked short selling and IF that short selling was coming almost entirely from the specs...the current net short position of The Silver Cartel may be as low as 11,000 contracts. Additionally, the balance MAY be JPM net short 16,000 and everyone else net long 5,000. Think about the implications of that for a moment.

Regardless, today the net short ratio of The Evil Empire in silver is at an historically low level. I have maintained for over a year now that the run-up in April of 2011 and the ensuing beatdown in the 14 months since has been a coordinated effort by The Silver Cartel to extricate themselves from their tenuous and extreme net short position. In late March of 2011, they were net short 55,000 contracts. Today, they are net short as few as 11,000 contracts. That's an 80% reduction and they are almost there, almost flat. The question of the day, and the ultimate subject of this post, becomes: WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

  • Can silver reverse and rally while JPM battles the rest of The Cartel?
  • Must silver decline further in order for The Cartel to move to net flat?
  • Can silver decline further in the face of tight supply and strong physical demand?
  • I wish I had the answers but, obviously, I don't. I'm left to speculate and guess just like you are. One thing I do know, however, is this: Silver will reverse and it will then head much, much higher. For traders, the timing of this reversal is extremely important. For stackers, not so much. Any further dips in price should be greeted with joy as the opportunity to buy silver at these fiat price levels will not last much longer.

    However, I recognize that even stackers watch the day-to-day price changes with great interest. With that in mind, take a good, long look at these charts of silver:

    Look, I can assure you that silver is in very tight supply and it is increasingly difficult for Buyers of Size to get timely, price-efficient delivery. This condition of the physical market will make it very difficult for silver to break down through $26. Difficult, yes, but not impossible. On a very short-term basis, it's certainly possible for silver to be run through $26. There has to be a considerable amount of buy-stops under that level. "Harvesting" them alone could drop price below $25 and, after that, selling momentum could take price all the way to $22. Heck, maybe even $20.

    I tell you this not because I expect this to happen. I tell you this so that you are mentally prepared. IF this happens, it will mark the end of silver manipulation, as we've known it. A brief drop into the lower 20s would allow The Cartel to finally move to a net flat or even net long position. From there, silver will rapidly recover and soar to new, all-time highs. Of this, I am 100% certain. Therefore, IF silver suddenly falls another 20%, do not freak out and panic sell your metal. This would be the biggest financial mistake you'll ever make.

    Again, silver could and SHOULD hold the $26 floor simply because of the tight, physical marketplace. IF it doesn't, though, be prepared for the opportunity of a lifetime to buy silver at what will be an historic bottom. Price will not stay down for long, though, so you must be prepared to move quickly. Besides The Silver Cartel moving net neutral/long, there are several fundamental changes coming over the horizon for silver. Be strong and do not waver.

    In this context, we should discuss gold, too. Any set of conditions that would allow for a raid in silver would likely cause a raid in gold, as well. Do the charts bear this out? Maybe. Take a look. Like $26 silver, you can rightly assume that there is an abundance of stops below $1525 gold. This has to have The Gold Cartel salivating. Can they pull it off in the face of extraordinarily strong, global demand for physical gold? Yes, they can but again, though, they won't be able to keep it down there long.

    At it's last peak in August of 2011, note that gold broke out of it's primary channel and moved about $250 higher. Having broken down now and residing outside the channel, the risk remains that gold could fall $250 below the channel. This would take it to roughly $1400. Looking at the weekly chart, this would be a logical spot for support to appear, too. Again, I AM NOT SAYING that gold is going to fall to $1425. I am saying that it's a possibility and, if it does, this type of move would present to you an extraordinary and historic opportunity to BUY not sell. Just be mentally prepared, that's all.

    Regardless of all this, it's going to be a great week around here. The new "podcast" site is finally set to open on Monday. Besides daily audio commentary from yours truly, the site will also include:

    • Member interaction with PM "gurus" (webinars, conference calls and chats)
    • In-depth interviews of industry leaders
    • Non-moderated (except in extreme circumstances), "blogspot-style" daily thread comments

    And remember, the ultimate purpose of this new, "sister" site is to allow TFMR to stay completely as-is and grow at the same time. No fees. Never so many ads that you can't tell the content from the advertisements. A community where we all freely share and prepare.

    I hope you have a great weekend. It's going to be a fun summer regardless of what the next few weeks may hold.


    About the Author

    turd [at] tfmetalsreport [dot] com ()


    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:25pm

    @Lady Gag

    What a joke. Based on your comments and stories so far you'll fit right in with some folks here. First, the son of the person who cleans your teeth is with the Bernank every step of the way and tells a ridiculous story. And as a syndicated columnist with over a million readers you come here to ask what to write about. And then someone tells you a story about a bank glitch, your questions are about muggings and home invasions by thugs. Yeah, you'll find plenty of conspiracy theorists here to play your game. This should be fun to watch.

    Lamenting Laverne
    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:29pm

    RBS Mess - Clarification and thanks

    @Number 47: Thank you very much for the precision of dates. That was interesting, because now we can add tampering with already posted/booked transactions to the list. That is very serious. If these changes of dates on already posted entries do not originate from a cyber attack, then we can add fraudulent attempt to "correct" embarrassing posted/booked data (as in evidence of late processing). That is illegal, where I come from.

    @ 57Goldtop: As I tried to say - I do not think this is a false flag on the part of RBS or their employees. I went back to my post to see, where that misunderstanding came from, and I am guessing you fell over this one: "It could be banking cannibalism, but that would not be a false flag, but a real attack from within the ranks.". I am sorry for being unclear. I meant "...within the ranks of the banks" as in another bank that may see an interest in downing a competitor.

    ​PS: Loved your "eat your ITIL books" joke - nerdy touch ;-)

    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:29pm


    Additional events to prepare for:

    1) Medical: Prescription medications: Three to six month supply of vital/necessary medications especially those with chronic life endangering conditions eg diabetics, high blood pressure etc.

    Dawg LifeIsPain
    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:36pm

    Deleted by Dawg


    SilverWealth bam
    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:37pm


    Longer term of course the dollar is under pressure and will ultimately become less and less dominant. Again, I am referring to a shorter term horizon over the last year. And the monthly chart you are referring to can easily break below the midline as it has done many times before and then break thru the bottom band as well. Trend lines are not God lines. All trendlines eventually break down, especially ones that have been going up and up for many years.

    And yes I have heard time and again on this site about the coming demise of the Dollar. Please wake me up when it happens. The Dollar is the world reserve currency backed by the full faith of histories' most vicious and imperialistic military. Speculating on when it collapses is just that: speculation. There has been wild speculation on this board and from every corner of the metals community about the coming dollar collapse for many years. But the dollar has been in recovery and rally mode since November of last year and its headed to 85. Does that mean collapse? How can that be? Could it be that we are in a deflationary phase? Pull up a chart of the CCI and you tell me.

    Waiting on a collapse scenario is Hoping. Haven't we had enough of that already with the Bozo Hope and Change Pres.?

    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:38pm



    HardAssets maravich44
    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:41pm

    RBS @maravich44

    @maravich44 -- Pete is that you

    Typically money coming in (paychecks,transfers) -- is sent to the bank in a data file. These data files are typically processed over night by automatically scheduled programs. It is these transactions that were supposed to be processed by the programs at night -- that have been affected.

    Now -- obviously I am a hard asset lover. I do believe that the derivative problems are out there and one way or the other -- will be addressed - and banks will have problems.

    I just think that this is not one of those problems. It is a problem of cascading incompetence.

    ClinkinKY Really-
    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:47pm

    @ Really-

    Yeah, because the multitude of stories about "home invasions" over the past couple years is obviously a "conspiracy" /s.

    Look it up.


    Disclaimer: Not vouching for Lady Gaugau, but your post is no more "relevant".

    Lady Gaugau
    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:47pm


    Ok ... really? Seriously? Sheesh ...

    Jun 24, 2012 - 2:57pm


    In 2008 I pre-ordered Corsi's book about Obama. Sat down and read it the day I received it. "Ha! Game over!", I thought. How could any person of African ancestry vote for a man descended from Arab slave-traders licensed by Queen Victoria? I waited for the news to hit the evening news, or the see the headlines at the top of the local newspaper. Still waiting. Our Fourth Estate is now our Fifth Column.

    European American
    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:01pm

    @ 47

    I want to thank you "47" for your updates and the sharing of your personal "banking cluster" status, with us here.

    Last century (boy does that sound like I'm an old timer) I started preparing for an economic, social, environmental meltdown. I had no idea how and when IT (one or all three) would manifest but all the external (and internal) indicators were telling me to "get ready". So, I worked on a number of fronts simultaneously, ranging from "containing the Fire within" (learning how to be invisible while living around others), understanding the mechanics of self reliance, to actually living totally off the grid and surviving off the basics. It was a mind expanding experience, quite liberating, in more ways than one, and it continues to open up new vistas as the amazing journey continues. But what really got me going "full speed ahead" was when 9/11 took place. That very afternoon I went to my bank and withdrew all but $100. I knew a couldn't live the life-style I wanted if I just deleted the banking system from my life, but I knew, that day, that at any moment in time, that corrupt system could pull the plug on me; in a second, without any remorse from their side, whatsoever. So I learned to do "The Dance" i.e. keep enough money in the system to have access and utilize their corrupt system to my advantage, by; keep out of the credit card world (been out of that since '89) except for a debit card; never go into debt to "ANYONE" (since '89); if necessary cash checks at "their" bank'; always use hand written checks to pay bills; AND don't get paid through direct monthly deposits (even if it means not working for someone who insists on paying their employees that way).

    On might say that its more work than it's worth. I say, ITs FREEDOM and I can't afford not to take the time to "do my dance to the tune that I choose". So when I read your updates I wondered how many more out there, at this forum, are as dependent on the same system as you "seem" to be. Again, I'm not criticizing your tactics and/or strategies. Only you know your situation in depth; I certainly don't. However, from what I gather, you are up to your eyeballs in "their" system. And now that you see this quagmire you find yourself in, how vulnerable you really are, I think the reality of your reality is the LESSON: how do you "REALLY" get yourself free from their system, from now on out?

    "They" are purposefully making it almost impossible to circumvent their system by going to electronic money, but that's the illusion, the story line, they pretend is real and the masses believe. I'm still apart of that but only on the edge. I've got cash and PM's, stored food, sufficient security assets, no debt, organic veggie gardens, wonderful paid for home, happy pets, and more, but I'm also a realist and know it can all be gone tomorrow. But at least I'm relatively happy knowing that it's possible to not be entirely in their clutches, at their mercy. Hopefully 47, you will do what you can to minimize their direct and indirect influence on your life. Good luck!

    For everyone else, I suggest looking at this picture of going "off their financial grid", not as a obstacle, a diversion, i.e. a time consuming, just one more hassle to deal with cluster, but as an opportunity to finally be "mostly" free of something we've wanted to be free of, all along. I mean, why are we here, what's our purpose, anyway? Got anything better to do?

    maravich44 HardAssets
    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:03pm

    @HardAssets...yes it's me..

    ..still alive and on the wander. Too harsh and critical sometimes is one of my many faults. Perspective much appreciated. I'll sure pay attention, please stay around....44..

    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:04pm


    : hint at warnings of 401k and ira money getting tied to treasury, approach your sheeple as a "what if" scenario based on melt down in Europe and remind them to be diversified a bit in PMs just in case... It doesn't have to be you saying it, rather, "I read the most astonishing article recently..."

    If you have a million readers, be a hero.

    I've been studying conspiracy for decades, besides being fun and exciting, most are truer than what's taught in high school history books and personal finance magazines. That's why were here, we don't buy into the MOPE (right-wind corporate media as I recently posted) and we are a very proactive, albeit diverse group of people.

    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:06pm

    You are all Hamas

    Sure sounds like a declaration of war to me.

    MB Cleric at Rally for Egypt's New President Morsi, Israel's New Neighbor - RabbiLIVE.com
    Lamenting Laverne
    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:09pm

    @ HardAssets

    I follow you. I would add one feature for "lower paid widgets". They are much more reluctant to say NO to the boss, when something stupid is being pushed through the pipeline. The higher paid widgets, are much more likely to put up a fight, in the same situation. I have worked with very talented Indian IT professionals, for whom I have great respect, but putting down the foot in crucial moments were not their greatest forte.

    Whether this story is rooted in cascading incompetence and communicational knots triggered by an implementation gone bad, or an outside impact, remains to be seen. And I would not be surprised to learn that some big boss from Europe has been going all puffed up and shouting his head of at his Indian liaisons expecting a positive outcome, only to find that this approach results in a total "going clam" on him. Something that would clearly worsen the situation.

    I still think that some of the incident reports/comments points to more than scheduling issues, though. We'll see.

    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:11pm

    @European American

    Great post! I agree - what is everyone waiting for? We became debt free over 5 years ago, and have never looked back. Don`t own a mobile `phone, don`t go to supermarkets, etc.

    Change your life, live up to your principles, change the world around you...

    bam SilverWealth
    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:15pm


    My point with the trendline is not that it is infallible, but that it is consistent. It can run up and down along the line and you are still fine. Sure, it'll breakdown when the bull is over, but are we really seeing signs of that fundamentally? You'd be hard pressed to make a case for that. You'll find that the regular currency markets whipsaw like crazy as well, not just gold.

    And yes I have heard time and again on this site about the coming demise of the Dollar. Please wake me up when it happens. The Dollar is the world reserve currency backed by the full faith of histories' most vicious and imperialistic military. Speculating on when it collapses is just that: speculation. There has been wild speculation on this board and from every corner of the metals community about the coming dollar collapse for many years. But the dollar has been in recovery and rally mode since November of last year and its headed to 85. Does that mean collapse? How can that be? Could it be that we are in a deflationary phase? Pull up a chart of the CCI and you tell me.

    Again, the strength of the dollar relies on its international trade use (essentially its reserve currency status). Up until recently (last year or two), this use had remained relatively consistent. We are now seeing a strong concerted move away from using the USD internationally, this year more than any other in history. This will likely bring downward pressure on the dollar, especially in conjunction with more QE (multiplication effect). But the dollar doesn't have to 'collapse' for gold to rise substantially, as the charts I provided show. When all currencies are being debased, gold will perform regardless. There is no need to wait on a collapse. I personally think the dollar will be around for the next few years, but gold will be far higher in relation to it.

    And gold generally performs very well in deflationary phases historically.

    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:15pm

    Bank IT Failure vs. Hackers vs. Insolvency

    Fantastic discussion! Thanks for all the amazing insight.

    Where else can one get such a detailed, timely discussion of the possibilities?

    Nothing on Drudge, nothing on the mainstream media, nothing in the WSJ; yet, the problems are REAL, and dynamic.

    We are witnessing the old model of news dissemination fail before our eyes. Our method of discovering news is the future. Yes, the news that we learn from this site does require some filtering, and yes, it is assured that ONE of the above reasons is to blame: incompetence, intent, or insolvency. But which one?

    I prefer to know the facts, that is, the failed atm transcations, the altered balances and transaction details, the failure to show deposits, etc., as well as the possible sources for the failures, so that I can draw my own conclusions. However, in this day and age, when the old media is losing power, marginally, every day in every way, do we really believe anything that the old media says anymore?

    I trust 47 and goldtop FAR MORE for realistic news than I do the local or national media.

    So, let's not jump to any conclusions, but also, realize that SOMETHING is happening, and either of the scenarios is a harbinger of things to come.

    Personally, I would love to see that this was a bank run, with a massive cover-up, lies and spin. I would love to see perp walks, and an awakening of the populace to the reality that our fiat system is taking its last gasps, in agonal breaths. However, the likely culprit will be found to be massive incompetence, coupled by an overload of the system from the initial failures which overwhelmed the servers/mainframe. Just my $0.02.

    Have a great rest of the weekend. I am off to run 15 miles in preparation for the Tough Mudder in a few weeks.

    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:47pm


    Additional prep ideas to write about:

    The threat of forcing all IRA/pension/401k money into US treasuries is apparently being seriously considered. There are Trillions of $ there for the US Treasury to loot. It may well be worth folks while to consider cashing in their IRA's/401k's, paying the taxes and 10% penalty and taking control of the funds, but I don't know how many are ready to hear this. Looking back a few years from now, this could well prove to be great advice. Many eg Warren Buffett have warned against investing in Treasuries. We all know why.

    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:51pm

    What's up with Zombie's nowadays?

    Is it possible that some 'normal' everyday situations in Corporate/Govt. structures are mimicking Hollywood/TV to some extent due to prolonged saturation of MSM content and conditioning and the decision/policy makers are having a difficult time in separating real situations or implied possibilities in real life and are using in some cases (to a very small extent) extreme or fantasy like scripts/idea's as the basis to provide solutions or comparisons to some problems that are real or perceived to be possible even though the possibility of Zombies is zero? (Yes, that was an extremely long run-on thought/sentence )

    When I see things like this Weird News story that are in fact happening elsewhere (zombie drills) and they're actually Govt sponsored I have to scratch my head a little. For the record, I do not believe in zombies or think the Govt is creating them or knows something we don't know. (Zombies as defined as the dead rising to take on another life and to feed on people. That's crazy imho.)

    So then why do things like this happen with a zombie even being thrown into the equation? To establish fear? To grab attention? That seems a bit extreme and that's the core of what I'm about to post about on a lazy Sunday afternoon and totally off topic.

    Check this out...

    Zombie Apocalypse: Bangor, Maine Prepares For Hordes Of Undead Minions



    It just strikes me as odd thinking or behavior that they'll actually follow through on some of this and how someone at some level thought this was a good idea. Same thing with Vampires these days

    A hugely advertised and 4th of July summer movie with Abe Lincoln as a dual President and vampire killer is about to come out and probably break box office records. Vampires and zombies being so popular to the extent of being totally ingrained upon our psyche's that it has some impact on the leadership or Govt to a certain degree.

    (And "Noooo... I do not believe in vampires" defined as undead people coming back to life and having to drink blood and be light avoidant although the aversion to silver and garlic has me thinking that some non-Italian JPM bankers could be in fact vampires )

    If you think I'm exaggerating a little bit, then why are things like this article below on a super serious Govt. website such as the CDC.gov site? I consider this article by them to be Weird News and really out of place yet someone thought it was a good idea on some level within Govt. for whatever reason to have a Zombie page. That's odd that it was even thought of.

    Does anyone think that the Hollywood/TV/MSM complex has had an effect on the populace as a whole due to decades long saturation of escalating and extremely dramatic or violent plots and scripts? I do. And I think it's had a profound impact on our culture over here in the States in many ways and not just these few examples I've given.

    Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse

    Categories: Zombies

    Walking Dead fans, check out our latest post: https://go.usa.gov/Q4J

    There are all kinds of emergencies out there that we can prepare for. Take a zombie apocalypse for example. That’s right, I said z-o-m-b-i-e a-p-o-c-a-l-y-p-s-e. You may laugh now, but when it happens you’ll be happy you read this, and hey, maybe you’ll even learn a thing or two about how to prepare for a real emergency.

    A Brief History of Zombies
    We’ve all seen at least one movie about flesh-eating zombies taking over (my personal favorite is Resident Evil), but where do zombies come from and why do they love eating brains so much? The word zombie comes from Haitian and New Orleans voodoo origins. Although its meaning has changed slightly over the years, it refers to a human corpse mysteriously reanimated to serve the undead. Through ancient voodoo and folk-lore traditions, shows like the Walking Dead were born.

    A couple dressed as zombies - Danny Zucco and Sandy Olsson from the movie Grease walking in the annual Toronto Zombie Walk.

    In movies, shows, and literature, zombies are often depicted as being created by an infectious virus, which is passed on via bites and contact with bodily fluids. Harvard psychiatrist Steven Schlozman wrote a (fictional) medical paper on the zombies presented in Night of the Living Dead and refers to the condition as Ataxic Neurodegenerative Satiety Deficiency Syndrome caused by an infectious agent. The Zombie Survival Guide identifies the cause of zombies as a virus called solanum. Other zombie origins shown in films include radiation from a destroyed NASA Venus probe (as in Night of the Living Dead), as well as mutations of existing conditions such as prions, mad-cow disease, measles and rabies.

    The rise of zombies in pop culture has given credence to the idea that a zombie apocalypse could happen. In such a scenario zombies would take over entire countries, roaming city streets eating anything living that got in their way. The proliferation of this idea has led many people to wonder “How do I prepare for a zombie apocalypse?”

    Well, we’re here to answer that question for you, and hopefully share a few tips about preparing for real emergencies too.....



    I think we've reached a point where a certain level of abstract reasoning and responses to problems that are seen as solutions by our leaders and policy makers have been compromised to some extent that some viable solutions and some policy decisions can't be made without some type of cultural (Hollywood/TV) reference attached to it or at the very least an extreme policy decision that's complicated and unrealistic.

    We're all products of our environment and the 24/7 decades long sub-culture that the Hollywood/TV/MSM complex represents has filled the minds of this and other recent generations with all kinds dramatic idea's and possibilities. Think "Clockwork Orange" except that it's not about forced rehabilitation for a violence problem.....it's an alternative reality that plays out on TV or on a big screen or in print/web media etc. that people voluntarily sit down to watch because they want to accept it on some level for whatever reason as an escape from everyday reality.

    Think about it the next time you see zombies being used in any govt drill or exercises and whenever you see an ex-president that kills vampires on the side while the civil war raged on and you'll see a culture that is bored and seeking some type of sensational angle to just about everything in an increasing way as solutions to simple problems seem unrealistic.

    We're all products of our environment and upbringing.

    Zombies in 2012? Doesn't seem real rational does it?

    ClinkinKY ¤
    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:51pm

    What's up with Zombie's nowadays?

    Thanks for the link IS7. I usually don't go to HuffPost but thought I'd "take a shot" as I love Zombie posts:)

    The abundance of comments from the HuffPost commenters equating Zombies with "Tea Baggers" just furthers my impression of "Obama Zombies" being the brain dead contingent. Yeah, those who want to see government spending brought under control are the ones "without brains". /s You can't make this shit up.

    Number 47
    Jun 24, 2012 - 3:54pm

    @european american

    Here in Ireland there are no jobs that pay outside the banking system. All payments go through BACS (bank automated credit system) right after they go through the PAYE (pay as you earn tax) system. Taxes are deducted at source. I pay my utility bills and car insurance etc by direct debit because it is cheaper, they penalise people who pay cash with higher rates. I don't like it, it is the way the world works here. (until it doesn't) You can't get a bank account without a utility bill here due to 'money laundering' laws, that utility bill requires a lease or mortgage agreement and so on. The paper trail is massive. Everything monetary is processed through my PPS (personal public service) number. Without it I can't see a doctor, can't get employment, can't get a driving licence etc.

    I am in no way reliant on the bank. I could raise plenty of money if the bank closed tomorrow and would lose a maximum of 2000 euro between the three accounts we use as a family. This is not much really and is only in there to maintain our monthly payments. I have a credit union savings account, as does my wife, they hold cash with the banks so are subject to the same problems but we have to save local currency somewhere. We have a Polish bank account that holds Polish Zloty, this is a buffer against a collapse in the euro as are our holdings of physical swiss francs, dollars and GB pounds. We put some of our money in Bullionvault and bought land with some more. I hold allocated gold and silver in Switzerland and also here in Ireland in a (non bank) safety deposit and I also keep a few odds and sods to hand.

    I don't see the point in being off grid. For one, if I was to cash in all those things above that are linked to me I would have a substantial amount of currency/gold and nowhere to keep it.

    I have no debt, only a debit card because it came with the account. I prefer to use cash. Being off grid for me is not possible, 3 children in school. Taxes, car insurance, voting etc all make it impossible.

    As for preps, I have skills that will see me through any bad times, I can fix things, cars, laptops etc. I also have a hydroponic growroom with metal halide lamps that I built in my loft, right next to a substantial foodstore. I think I'm going to be ok in any SHTF, I've done all i can. (even down to bicycles) My mobile phone is not registered in my name but apart from using internet cafes I have to provide bank details to get an internet connection. Going off grid is just not possible here, maybe when I'm older it will be easier but as a man in his mid thirties I'm pretty happy with the preparations I have in place.

    To be honest I'm pretty annoyed that I have had to do all the things I have. I wish there was a system I could trust and not have to wear a tin foil hat, it's not my first choice in fashion. I do try to make sure it doesn't get too tight though, although it does on occasion.

    silver foil hat
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:01pm

    I think there's an implied threat here

    get your communities in order, or we take away your Federal funds:


    This reminds me of the "You should have stopped me at the dinner roll" story.


    maravich44 HardAssets
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:05pm


    "typically processed over night" exactly! coming up on one week, have you been affected?, are your children hungry? gotta love the data file crap. Should have named this *Fook the unTitled.. are you a banker?

    bam HardAssets
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:08pm


    If it is only a problem with delayed payments, why would all the other issues (being presented on forums) be popping up? eg People having trouble accessing accounts, account balances changing, historical payment dates changing, overcharge issues, etc.

    Not trying to be snotty at all, just curious as to your interpretation. If it is indeed merely an IT issue with regards to a deposit payment scheduler, they would appear to be fixing an oil fire with water (making things worse).

    HardAssets bam
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:12pm

    @Lamenting_Laver and @Bam

    LL -- I'm with you there. I have met some very talented Indian IT professionals as well. But -- just like any talented IT professional from any society -- the good ones have the talent to do better things than get stuck in some repeatable environment - and they leave. We have had a lot of problems keeping the good ones. And yes, I can easily see some high level executive causing the situation you describe.

    @Bam -- I think something like the following is happening:

    • The un-processed transactions were piling up and not being processed. During this time -- there were probably some risk decisions being made by managers to determine whether to lock everyone -- or maybe just the ones with lower balances before the problem occurred -- out of their accounts. (the bank had no idea what kind of transactions were piled up waiting to be processed).
    • At some point - the software problem was fixed -- and several days worth of un-processed transactions (that typically get processed at night -- or when there are not many people using their banking system) started getting processed.
    • From what I have heard -- (and I haven't checked for more details this afternoon from IT sites) - the several days worth of unprocessed transactions were being processed as fast as possible. Which means that people were trying to access and use their accounts -- while these transactions were being processed.
    • It depends on how old their systems are -- but one of the reasons for normally processing these transactions at night -- is that processing them typically interferes with a customer trying to use the system. So -- the bank is trying to catch up with the un-processed transactions -- while customers are trying to use the system - which is flukey. Usually an older system will lock out a user of the system -- during this type of update.
    • There also could have been a problem with some of these un-processed transactions - getting processed out of order - once they got the system working again. For example -- on Thursday an individuals paycheck was supposed to be processed -- and on Saturday -- they were supposed to have their mortgage payment automatically deducted. It was probably very stressful -- for the system people trying to recover from this. They might have processed a data file from Saturday first -- which tried to process the mortgage payment -- before the Thursday file which contained the Paycheck money.
    Erewhon888 Number 47
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:17pm

    RBS technical analysis

    Since some posters are interested in the gory details of the RBS debacle, you might want to track the insider stories at https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/3/2012/06/22/rbs_natwest_outage_fourth_day/ where several of the staff made redundant are spilling the beans on ancient assembler programs now unsupportable since any experienced staff were made redundant at the time of the outsourcing to India.

    Typical post from someone who:

    for very obvious reasons having been one of the recent 1000+ to find their roles now being done from Chennai, however I have been speaking to a few ex-colleagues who are still there and can confirm that they say the same as the above poster as in a CA7 upgrade was done, went horribly wrong, and was then backed out (which will have been done in typical RBS style - 12 hours of conference calls before letting the techie do what they suggested at the very start). My understanding is that most if not all of the batch team were let go and replaced with people from India and I do remember them complaining that they were having to pass 10-20+ years worth of mainframe knowledge on to people who'd never heard of a mainframe outside of a museum.

    Here's another one. Note the optimistic final sentence.

    I worked for RBS during and after the merger with Natwest, I left their Global Financial Markets Department in 2004 after a 5 year stint. They had already moved some IT functions to India at that point and have continued to do so year on year since. The numbers some people are quoting 1600/800 are possibly the more recent figures, the total is way way beyond this.


    The chaps I trained out in India were nice enough, but they simply lacked the knowledge and experience of Finacial Markets trading, trade and settlement processing, Swift messaging blah blah and the risks involved.

    I'll be drinking with a bunch of ex RBS/Natwesties soon enough, where we'll all be saying.....

    "WE TOLD YOU SO!!!!!!!"

    I doubt any senior manager in RBS/NW is going to say the outsourcing was to blame and change anything significant.

    Over the next 10 years, I would expect this sort of failure to happen to virtually all the big UK banks
    Number 47
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:18pm

    These are some of the things that don't make sense.

    RE bank issue.

    1. Why update a system that is required to batch every night except weekends mid week? Why not at the weekend? This doesn't make sense to me.

    2. If this was a CA7 scheduler that was being updated I can understand balances being delayed if this was damaged/corrupted. I can't understand why ATMs would stop working and money already in accounts would disappear.

    3. Money transfered from other banks has shown up in account only to leave again, my understanding is once batched it is safely in your account. Here is one (of many) examples.

    I didn't receive my pay as expected,I am with Rbs. I transferred money from my hubby's bank of Scotland account and this went through fine. Done a bit shopping yesterday but later on in the day they took the money I had transferred back out leaving me with a negative balance. Today I had to get fuel so transferred the last of our money which was enough for school dinners,fuel and to take me back in to a positive balance. Today the transactions haven't come off the balance and I have still not had my pay. We go abroad on thurs and I'm terrified my money won't be in by then what a farce.

    (Note bank of scotland is a completely seperate entity from RBS)

    4. If they are aware of what the issue is, why don't they tell us? We just get this 'software issue' excuse without any specifics. Where are the 'industry experts' giving their opinion on the news channels? Why no customer interviews?

    If there is nothing to hide, why do I feel they are hiding something? Why can't they specify why it is taking so long to rectify? Why is it taking so long if it is an IT fault. 6 days seems a bit much. The lack of information is what is most annoying, we just get told it will be fixed soon, then the next day, then the next, now the end of next week! Do they expect us to keep believing them when they have been wrong so far every day?

    I am not worried about money going in, I'm worried I will be in default on many things we have to pay, as yet there has been no confirmation if payments are occurring and what will happen if they do not.

    This is what breeds conspiracy, not the people, it is a natural reaction to being kept in the dark by the people we least trust on the planet.

    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:21pm

    @CA Lawyer

    Government censorship has turned into a zombie, and is nibbling away at the body of the goddess Veritas with the help of Google.


    HardAssets maravich44
    Jun 24, 2012 - 4:27pm

    Pistol Pete

    "typically processed over night" exactly! coming up on one week, have you been affected?, are your children hungry? gotta love the data file crap. Should have named this *Fook the unTitled.. are you a banker?

    Now Pete, don't make me throw a no-look behind the back half-court swisher on you. Everyone needs to chill out a little. Incompetence in government or big-companies can often look like conspiracy.

    My customer is a large Insurance company. We have an Insurance Processing system that was designed and written in the 80's. 8:00 PM every night -- the system is brought down and we process a wide variety of things such as:

    1) Banks send us data files of transactions - for the people who want to buy their insurance through credit cards -- or auto transfer from checking accounts. We process those files -- and update the accounting in our system to show the current status of the clients account.

    2) There are some changes made in the system during the day -- that cause us to process something that night. For example -- if a customer moved and updated their address -- or got married and changed their marital status -- we might create a data file that we would send to some other system that needed to know the new information.

    Anyhow -- data updates from one system to another, typically happen at night. Especially with older systems in the Banking Industry.

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