Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Five Charts That Show We Are on the Brink of an Unthinkable Financial Crisis- John_Mauldin
2.Bitcoin Parabolic Mania - Zeal_LLC
3.Bitcoin Doesn’t Exist – 2 - Raul_I_Meijer
4.Best Time / Month of Year to BUY a USED Car is DECEMBER, UK Analysis - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Labour Sheffield City Council Election Panic Could Prompt Suspension of Tree Felling's Private Security - N_Walayat
6.War on Gold Intensifies: It Betrays the Elitists’ Panic and Augurs Their Coming Defeat Part2 - Stewart_Dougherty
7.How High Will Gold Go? - Harry_Dent
8.Bitcoin Doesn’t Exist – Forks and Mad Max - Raul_I_Meijer
9.UK Stagflation Risk As Inflation Hits 3.1% and House Prices Fall - GoldCore
10.New EU Rules For Cross-Border Cash, Gold Bullion Movements - GoldCore
Last 7 days
Government Shutdown Ends – Markets Ignore Looming Debt and Bond Market Threat - 23rd Jan 18
Stock Risks to Watch: Choose Your Bear Market Dashboard - 23rd Jan 18
Worse than Watergate - Release the Memo - Investigate Uranium One - 23rd Jan 18
CAT Stock Bouncing after JPM Upgrade How High and How Long Can This CAT Jump? - 23rd Jan 18
Why Banks Will Be Slammed In The Next Crisis—And That May Be Good News - 23rd Jan 18
Medicare Premiums Are A Shared Pool - Coming Changes That Will Transform Retirement - 23rd Jan 18
Charged Atmosphere of Heavy Police and Security Presence at Sheffield Street Tree Felling Protests - 23rd Jan 18
Pension Crisis And Deficit of £2.6 Billion At Carillion To Impact UK - 22nd Jan 18
Two Factors for Gold That You Don’t Want to Miss - 22nd Jan 18
Why You Must Own Silver in 2018 - 22nd Jan 18
This Could Be The Hottest Mining Stock Of 2018 - 22nd Jan 18
Stock Index Trend Trade Setups for the SP500 & NASDAQ - 22nd Jan 18
Stock Market Deceleration / Distribution - 22nd Jan 18
US Markets vs Govt Shutdown: Stock Markets at all time highs - 22nd Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport - 1 Month Driving Test Review - 22nd Jan 18
Why should you use high-quality YouTube to mp3 converter? - 22nd Jan 18
Silver As Strategic Metal: Why Its Price Will Soar - 21st Jan 18
Stocks, Gold and Interest Rates Three Amigos Ride On - 21st Jan 18
Why Sometimes, "Beating the S&P 500" Isn't Good Enough - 21st Jan 18
Bunnies and Geckos of Sheffield Street Tree Fellings Protests Explained - 21st Jan 18
Jim Rickards: Next Financial Panic Will Be the Biggest of All, with Only One Place to Turn… - 20th Jan 18
Macro Trend Changes for Gold in 2018 and Beyond - Empire Club of Canada - 20th Jan 18
Top 5 Trader Information Sources for Timely, Successful Investing - 20th Jan 18
Bond Market Bear Creating Gold Bull Market - 19th Jan 18
Gold Stocks GDX $25 Breakout on Earnings - 19th Jan 18
SPX is Higher But No Breakout - 19th Jan 18
Game Changer for Bitcoin - 19th Jan 18
Upside Risk for Gold in 2018 - 19th Jan 18
Money Minute - A 60-second snapshot of the UK Economy - 19th Jan 18
Discovery Sport Real MPG Fuel Economy Vs Land Rover 53.3 MPG Sales Pitch - 19th Jan 18
For Americans Buying Gold and Silver: Still a Big U.S. Pricing Advantage - 19th Jan 18
5 Maps And Charts That Predict Geopolitical Trends In 2018 - 19th Jan 18
North Korean Quagmire: Part 2. Bombing, Nuclear Threats, and Resolution - 19th Jan 18
Complete Guide On Forex Trading Market - 19th Jan 18
Bitcoin Crash Sees Flight To Physical Gold Coins and Bars - 18th Jan 18
The Interest Rates Are What Matter In This Market - 18th Jan 18
Crude Oil Sweat, Blood and Tears - 18th Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport - Week 3 HSE Black Test Review - 18th Jan 18
The North Korea Quagmire: Part 1, A Contest of Colonialism and Communism - 18th Jan 18
Understand Currency Trade and Make Plenty of Money - 18th Jan 18
Bitcoin Price Crash Below $10,000. What's Next? We have answers… - 18th Jan 18
How to Trade Gold During Second Half of January, Daily Cycle Prediction - 18th Jan 18
More U.S. States Are Knocking Down Gold & Silver Barriers - 18th Jan 18
5 Economic Predictions for 2018 - 18th Jan 18
Land Rover Discovery Sport - What You Need to Know Before Buying - Owning Week 2 - 17th Jan 18
Bitcoin and Stock Prices, Both Symptoms of Speculative Extremes! - 17th Jan 18
So That’s What Stock Market Volatility Looks Like - 17th Jan 18
Tips On Choosing the Right Forex Dealer - 17th Jan 18
Crude Oil is Starting 2018 Strong but there's Undeniable Risk to the Downside - 16th Jan 18
SPX, NDX, INDU and RUT Stock Indices all at Resistance Levels - 16th Jan 18
Silver Prices To Surge – JP Morgan Has Acquired A “Massive Quantity of Physical Silver” - 16th Jan 18
Carillion Bankruptcy and the PFI Sector Spiraling Costs Crisis, Amey, G4S, Balfour Beatty, Serco.... - 16th Jan 18
Artificial Intelligence - Extermination of Humanity - 16th Jan 18
Carillion Goes Bust, as Government Refuses to Bailout PFI Contractors Debt and Pensions Liabilities - 15th Jan 18
What Really Happens in Iran?  - 15th Jan 18
Stock Market Near an Intermediate Top? - 15th Jan 18
The Key Economic Indicator You Should Watch in 2018 - 15th Jan 18
London Property Market Crash Looms As Prices Drop To 2 1/2 Year Low - 15th Jan 18
Some Fascinating Stock Market Fibonacci Relationships... - 15th Jan 18

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

6 Critical Money Making Rules

Could Volcker Rule Precipitate Next Financial Crisis?

Stock-Markets / Credit Crisis 2013 Dec 18, 2013 - 05:10 AM GMT

By: Pete_Grant

Stock-Markets

I am not certain how we should react out of the gate to the situation with Zions Bancorp. Utah’s largest banking group revealed that it will take a one-time $387 million post-tax charge, based on its interpretation of the Volcker rule. Essentially, Zions believes that the Volcker rule dictates that it can no longer hold CDOs of bank and insurer-issued trust preferred securities (TruPS).


Zions anticipates that in the fourth quarter of 2013 it will reclassify all covered CDOs that currently are classified as “Held to Maturity” into “Available for Sale,” and that all covered CDOs, regardless of the accounting classification, will be adjusted to Fair Value through an Other Than Temporary Impairment non-cash charge to earnings.

The size of the write down is “more than Zions has earned for any calendar year since 2007,” according to Bloomberg. If Zions is interpreting the rule correctly, the assets in question would have to be divested by July 21, 2015 (with the possibility of a 2-year extension), so the actual loss by the time the asset is disposed of could be far larger.

One can also be reasonably assured that the crack legal teams at all the other banks are closely examining the Volcker Rule to determine the possible implications. I have always felt that if the banks were forced to mark their derivatives to market rather than carrying them at cost, it could precipitate another financial crisis. As many of you already know, derivatives risks can quickly roll from one institution to the next as margin calls are made and securities dumped to meet them. That is why Warren Buffett once called derivatives ‘financial weapons of mass destruction.” The effect is like a nuclear chain reaction that could get out of control.

Zions movement of these questionable assets into the “Available for Sale” category is the first step toward dumping them, but one has to wonder who — if anyone — might be a buyer. This is not a situation where you want to be the last one out the door, and so there is the risk that this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy even before there is any kind of final interpretation of the Volcker rule as it relates to such assets.

Bloomberg’s Jonathan Weil summed it up thusly:

“In other words, the accounting rules had been letting Zions maintain a fiction. The bonds didn’t refrain from falling in value just because they were classified as held-to-maturity. A bond doesn’t care what its owner intends to do with it.”

There are trillions of dollars worth of assets sloshing around the U.S. and global financial systems that are marked-to-fiction. If there is a mad dash to dump these assets, the beating the balance sheet of Zions is taking will look like child’s play.

Could a rule designed to re-instill confidence in the U.S. financial system instead end up shaking it to its very foundation? We smell smoke, so there very well could be a fire here. We will be monitoring this story closely in the weeks ahead.

Many of you will remember that the financial crisis of 2008 began quietly and then quickly spun out of control. This is exactly why our clients prefer to hold some of their wealth in a physical asset with no counter-party risk. That asset is of course gold. When I first read of Zions Bancorp and began to think abut the possible repercussions, I was reminded of a quote from Dow Theory Letter’s venerable Richard Russell posted here recently:

“A few thoughts about gold. Never buy gold for a profit, gold is a measure of wealth. Count your gold holdings in the number of ounces, not the current worth in dollars. You don’t price the home you live in every day, or with each passing week. Nor should you price your gold holdings in dollars with each passing day. Gold is a timeless wealth asset; an asset that will have a value with the passing of time.

Remember this: Of the original issues that made up the Industrial Average, only one remains. And that stock is General Electric. And what happened to all the rest? In investing, nothing is permanent except gold. But remember, do not buy gold with the idea of making a profit. Buy gold because it is pure wealth, and may be the last man standing.”

It is the part about “the last man standing” that I think is worth passing along again today in light of breaking events.

To get you on track with this situation, here are several good takes on the story:

As First Volcker Rule Victim Emerges, Implications Could “Roil The Market” from ZeroHedge

Zions bank becomes early Volcker casualty from The FT

Volcker Rule Blame Game Begins from Bloomberg

For a free subscription to our newsletters, please click here.

By Pete Grant , Senior Metals Analyst, Account Executive
USAGOLD - Centennial Precious Metals, Denver

For more information on the role gold can play in your portfolio, please see The ABCs of Gold Investing : How to Protect and Build Your Wealth with Gold by Michael J. Kosares.

Pete Grant is the Senior Metals Analyst and an Account Executive with USAGOLD - Centennial Precious Metals. He has spent the majority of his career as a global markets analyst. He began trading IMM currency futures at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in the mid-1980's. In 1988 Mr. Grant joined MMS International as a foreign exchange market analyst. MMS was acquired by Standard & Poor's a short time later. Pete spent twelve years with S&P - MMS, where he became the Senior Managing FX Strategist. As a manager of the award-winning Currency Market Insight product, he was responsible for the daily real-time forecasting of the world's major and emerging currency pairs, along with gold and precious metals, to a global institutional audience. Pete was consistently recognized for providing invaluable services to his clients in the areas of custom trading strategies and risk assessment. The financial press frequently reported his expert market insights, risk evaluations and forecasts. Prior to joining USAGOLD, Mr. Grant served as VP of Operations and Chief Metals Trader for a Denver based investment management firm.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed in commentary e do not constitute an offer to buy or sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any precious metals product, nor should they be viewed in any way as investment advice or advice to buy, sell or hold. Centennial Precious Metals, Inc. recommends the purchase of physical precious metals for asset preservation purposes, not speculation. Utilization of these opinions for speculative purposes is neither suggested nor advised. Commentary is strictly for educational purposes, and as such USAGOLD - Centennial Precious Metals does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information found here.


© 2005-2018 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules