Killer Cash!

  • Here we go: Studies show cash can be hazardous to your health
  • Celente says the drift toward the cashless society is unstoppable…
  • … but there’s a profitable and ethical investing angle
  • Gold rebounds as traders discover what we’ve been saying for months
  • The problem with China’s falling forex reserves (not what you think)
  • What if China let the yuan float?… “our archenemy Russia”… a handy link to cutting-edge alternative health info… and more!

The global elites’ latest volley in the “war on cash” is a weird one. They’re telling us cash is — drumroll, please — a public health issue.

If you’ve been reading us for any amount of time, you’re familiar with the war on cash — the increasing push to get us all to perform our transactions electronically, the better to be tracked and taxed. Former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers figures the least that could be done is abolish the $100 bill; Harvard economist Ken Rogoff would just as soon do away with cash altogether, making his case in a book called The Curse of Cash.

There’s a compelling investment angle to the war on cash… and we’re not talking about anything like keeping gold in a safe at home. We’ll get to that shortly.

As you might already know, most of the arguments against cash are a variant on the following proposition: If we don’t do away with cash, then the money launderers and drug runners and terrorists win. Which is what makes the health gambit, if nothing else, novel…

“Studies have piled up in recent years describing exactly how filthy — specifically how bacteria-laden — our dollars and cents can be,” says an article in Scientific American.

“Fecal bacteria and other pathogens may have hitched a ride from someone’s hands, nose or apron onto our cash. And yeast or mold might have taken hold, too. The result could be a durable risk to our health whenever our money changes hands.”

Oh noes, teh germs!

The article spotlights a number of studies on the subject down through the years. For instance, “a 2010 analysis by Australian researchers looked at the actual number of bacteria per square centimeter on various bank notes and found that a U.S. note contains 10 such microbes per square centimeter.”

Cash: It can kill you!

While paying lip service to issues like privacy, “if the question of a cashless society is approached purely from a public health standpoint, the answer seems clear.”

Yes! If we all just went around waving our smartphones to conduct commerce, we’d prevent X number of deaths every year and save Y billion dollars in health care costs. That’s what the research shows us, right?

Uh, no: “There is no definitive research that connects enough dots to prove dirty money actually makes people sick.”

Oh, well…

“For those few remaining who steadfastly refuse to ever give up cash, forget about it: A global cashless society is fast becoming a reality,” says the veteran trend forecaster Gerald Celente, who joined the Agora Financial team last summer.

Aside from the agenda of the global elites, consider this: “The massive millennial generation across the globe shows minimal resistance against the imminent demise of cash. Indeed, digital dollars already are the way of the world. There are no ‘Occupy Cash’ movements anywhere.

“The convenience millennials naturally cherish, and more boomers and seniors are forced to accept, is accelerating the transition to a cashless society.

“Big Brother will watch even more how you spend your money, conduct your daily life and engage the world around you. Your privacy will be lost. Your spending will be a matter of record.

“Without hard cash, every digital purchase logged is subject to taxes, fees and penalties. Owe back taxes? Overdrawn on your account? Had a lien filed against you? Forgot a mortgage payment? In a cashless society, government or big banks can more easily take your money without resistance or due process.”

But a question remains: How will the elites rope in the 7.7% of Americans who have no bank account? Therein lies a profitable tale…

A year ago, we related the story of a homeless man in Detroit who accepts credit cards. He has one of those little Square readers attached to his smartphone. It instantly dawned on us how the “unbanked” would be roped into the cashless society: Obamaphones and Square readers.

But Gerald and his team have tipped us off to something even more ingenious, and here’s where the investment angle comes in: Best of all, while you can’t stop the cashless-society train… Gerald says this solution can “disrupt governments’ plans to track individual spending habits.”

Hey, count us in.

We don’t want to give away much more than that, except to note that this solution has 200% profit potential during 2017… and in fact has already generated 62% gains in only two weeks for a small circle of Gerald’s readers.

This Thursday, Gerald takes the wraps off during a special live event he’s calling 2017 Road Map to Riches: My Top 5 Market Trends for the Year Ahead. In addition, you’ll learn about…

‣ The new, “off limits” market Washington wants to control — but that’s already minting millionaires out of regular folks nationwide

‣ An approaching financial crisis the likes of which you haven’t seen since the housing bubble burst in ’07 — and the easy, perfect way to make a mint from it

‣ The health catastrophe in your own backyard that political hacks keep sweeping under the rug — and the one thing you can do today to profit from their stupidity

‣ The biggest, least talked-about trend that could soon leave millions jobless — and make you a huge pile of cash in the months ahead.

Fair warning: If you want to watch something that reinforces your existing opinions, this event isn’t for you. But if you go in with an open mind, you can come out with the potential to make 2017 your portfolio’s best year ever. And it won’t cost you anything to watch; just sign up at this link and you’re guaranteed access.

Once again, it appears Dow 20,000 will have to wait: As we write this morning, the Big Board is down about 33 points at 19,930.

Energy shares are a drag; crude is down 3% at $52.34. That’s a lingering effect of news on Friday that the number of U.S. oil rigs rose for the tenth week in a row. With oil in the $30s a memory for now, U.S. operators appear more confident about ramping up production again.

Like the Dow, the S&P 500 is in the red, but the Nasdaq is pushing higher into record territory at 5,535.

Gold is up nearly 1%, regaining last week’s recent highs at $1,183. “Don’t look now, but gold prices are starting to turn higher,” says our income specialist Zach Scheidt.

“During the fourth quarter,” he reminds us, “gold prices moved lower, thanks to a strong U.S. dollar. Investors worried that higher interest rates would continue to push the dollar higher and gold prices lower. So they sold gold and gold mining stocks, sending shares lower.”

But here’s the thing: “The reason those rates will move higher is because the Fed is worried about inflation,” Zach goes on. “And inflation is exactly what causes investments like gold and silver to trade higher.”

Lo and behold, that’s what dawned on traders last week…

While the news is good for gold holders, it’s likewise good for Zach’s Income on Demand readers — who’ve regularly collected instant income on precious metals plays during 2016. “Our perpetual income strategy allows us to continually collect income from our positions month after month. That way, we can offset any pullback with cold, hard cash in our account.”

That’s a big claim — so big we put Zach on a polygraph to prove it. Really, we did. See for yourself right here.

Don’t look now, but China’s stockpile of foreign currency has sunk to its lowest level in close to six years.

Over the weekend, the People’s Bank of China disclosed its foreign exchange reserves fell $41 billion in December, to $3.011 trillion. “The drop,” says today’s Wall Street Journal, “underscored the central bank’s willingness to dip into reserves to buy up yuan and use capital controls and other tools to try to prop up the currency and restrain businesses and individuals rushing to send money offshore.”

Well, yes. But the situation is more dire than the paper lets on. “China’s overall reserves have fallen from about $4 trillion in 2014 to $3 trillion today,” says Jim Rickards.

“Of that $3 trillion,” Jim goes on, “about $1 trillion is illiquid and another $1 trillion will be needed to bail out China’s banks in the coming credit crisis. That only leaves $1 trillion as a precautionary reserve to defend the yuan. China’s capital flight continues at about $100 billion per month.

“This means China will be broke in one year.”

Jim made this point at a conference in China in recent days. Remarkably, the state-run TV network CGTN — formerly known as CCTV — aired his remarks. We snagged a screenshot during the channel’s business programming in the 8:00 a.m. EST hour…

And as we said last week, Donald Trump is about to step into this volatile mix with his threat to label China a “currency manipulator” as soon as he takes office, in 11 more days.

Jim’s headed back stateside today. Between now and Inauguration Day, he’ll reveal what his on-the-ground sources in China are telling him, along with a strategy to profit from any market turmoil this situation might trigger…

“So China is worried about being labeled as a currency manipulator?” begins today’s mailbag.

“The fix is easy — stop manipulating it. Let the yuan float free and trade freely on the world markets.

“Of course, this is one of those Alice in Wonderland moments when stopping manipulation would probably get them slapped with the manipulator label, and it is certain that such a move would cause massive dislocations in the world markets, but what a delicious example of ‘Be careful what you ask for.’”

“Cheap partisan demagoguery,” reads the subject line of an email we got after our Saturday edition. Oh, this oughta be good…

“There is nothing ‘cheap’ or ‘partisan’ in calling for a robust response to a direct attack on the U.S. electoral system of this country by Russia.

[As background, we cited a smart fellow who said if the “Treason!” crowd were serious about the charge of treason, they’d demand Barack Obama send U.S. marshals to Trump Tower and haul away the Donald in leg irons. Short of that, they’re merely trying to score cheap partisan points.]

“It’s tragic to imagine how shockingly and utterly opposite a reaction the right would have if Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton or, better still, Bernie Sanders were regularly and inanely serving up a Twitter defense of not only our archenemy Russia but specifically beyond all reason the former KGB authoritarian murderer Vladimir Putin.

“The congressional hearings would last for the entire four years of the president’s term. And yes, there would be endless talk of the need for imprisonment. And most certainly, the new president would be labeled #therealManchurianCandidate.”

The 5: Well, of course, that’s what would happen. That’s what we mean about cheap partisan points. Most of this nonsense has a shoe-on-the-other-foot quality.

As for Russia being an “archenemy”… are you sure you don’t want to contact Poison Control after the amount of Kool-Aid you’ve downed there?

Even if the Russian government did what the intel agencies say they did — and they’ve still furnished no evidence for that assertion — we’re not sure what’s so appalling about exposing the machinations of people who lust after political power.

For benefit of newer readers: We are a strictly anti-partisan outfit here. And while we agree with the president-elect that “having a good relationship with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing,” we don’t much care for his notion that Washington and Moscow would “work together to solve some of the many great and pressing problems and issues of the WORLD!”

We prefer Thomas Jefferson’s maxim of “peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none.” Alas, we are in a tiny minority…

“That was great dialogue between you and the 70-year-old man concerning diet and exercise,” a reader writes in reply to Friday’s mailbag.

“At 61, the only processed foods I eat are tortillas and roasted nuts. Have been off blood pressure (pre-hypertension) drugs and Prilosec for years now and lost about 30 pounds in process… love the articles on homeopathic remedies.”

Writes another: “I’m curious how to receive the e-letter Living Well Daily. You occasionally republish their essays on Saturdays?”

The 5: Yes. If you don’t want to miss an issue, here’s where to sign up.

Best regards,

Dave Gonigam
The 5 Min. Forecast

P.S. How would you like to reclaim $646… $1,388… $14,876 or more of YOUR MONEY… from the government?

(This has nothing to do with tax refunds… unemployment checks… or handouts of ANY kind.)

Simply postmark your FREE “U-Form” to a certain government address… and you could get back thousands… without spending a dime.

The catch? You’ll want to act ASAP. Full details here.

Dave Gonigam

Dave Gonigam

Dave Gonigam has been managing editor of The 5 Min. Forecast since September 2010. Before joining the research and writing team at Agora Financial in 2007, he worked for 20 years as an Emmy award-winning television news producer.

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