US Spent A Record $140 Billion On Debt Interest In June, 30% Of All Tax Revenues

Winter is coming!…

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US Spent A Record $140 Billion On Debt Interest In June, 30% Of All Tax Revenues:

And putting it in context, the $140 billion in gross interest spending was just over 30% of all US receipts (mostly taxes) in June..

… a staggering number fast approaching the threshold where everyone will be forced to admit the US has crossed into a Minsky moment.

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Costco Is Raising Membership Fees On 52 Million Members, Wall Street Views As ‘Positive Catalyst’

Costco Is Raising Membership Fees On 52 Million Members, Wall Street Views As ‘Positive Catalyst’ :

Shares of Costco Wholesale Corp. are higher in premarket trading in New York after the warehouse-club chain announced annual price hikes across its members for the first time in years.

Starting September 1, Costco Gold Star, Business, and Business add-on members across North America will see an increase of $5 to their annual membership costs, bumping up from $60 to $65. Executive members must pay $130, a $10 price hike. Membership price hikes will impact all 52 million members.

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Pepsi Warns US Snack Demand “Subdued” As Consumer Slowdown Worsens

Pepsi Warns US Snack Demand “Subdued” As Consumer Slowdown Worsens:

PepsiCo reported weaker-than-expected revenue growth in the second quarter on Thursday as consumers dialed back snack spending. The junk food giant tempered its full-year outlook on a more challenged consumer. This reflects a broader consumer slowdown trend, particularly impacting working-poor households amid elevated inflation and high interest rates.

CEO Ramon Laguarta wrote in a filing that the company’s North American snack demand was “subdued” during the second quarter and noted sales volumes declined.

On a call with investors, Laguarta said customers across all income brackets are reducing snack spend and trading down to store brands.

“In the US, there is clearly a consumer that is that is more challenged,” the CEO said. This suggests the cumulative impact of several years of price hike has pushed consumers over the edge.

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Homes In California’s Big Cities Cost 10 Times More Than Average Income

Homes In California’s Big Cities Cost 10 Times More Than Average Income:

Authored by Jill McLaughlin via The Epoch Times,

Buying a home in California slid further out of reach for many residents in 2023, especially in larger metropolitan areas, according to a recent Harvard University housing study.

The report found some of the highest disparity between wages and housing prices in Northern California.

According to the report released June 20, the Silicon Valley cities of San Jose, Sunnyvale, and Santa Clara had a median home sales price 11 times higher than the area’s average annual wage of nearly $113,000 in 2023.

Median home sales prices are determined by finding the midpoint of all sales, where half sold for more and half for less.

The same was found at the coast in Santa Cruz and Watsonville, where 2023 housing prices were also 11 times higher than the average yearly wage of almost $68,000.

In Los Angeles County and Anaheim—in Orange County—the median home sales price was about 10 times more than the average wage of $98,200.

Further south in San Diego and Carlsbad, housing reached nearly nine times more than the average wage of $76,000 last year.

“Both homeowners and renters are struggling with high housing costs,” the authors of the report, called “The State of the Nation’s Housing 2024” wrote in its summary.

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Senators Strike Deal To Ban Stock Trading By Members Of Congress

…and this will have ZERO effect on insider trading by the likes of Pelosi.

However, insider trading will get slightly more difficult.

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Senators Strike Deal To Ban Stock Trading By Members Of Congress:

A bipartisan group of senators including Josh Hawley (R-MO) on Wednesday came to an agreement on a renewed effort to ban members of Congress from trading stock.

Penalties for violating the ban would be the greater amount of either their monthly salary, or 10% of the value of each covered asset in violation.

In 2021, Ossoff introduced a ban and put his own stock portfolio in a blind trust to lead as an example. The effort gained traction following revelations that several senators made  very profitable trades in as the Covid-19 pandemic unfolded, when members of Congress were receiving classified briefings warning of how disastrous the virus could be for the US economy.

Several insider trading investigations were launched by the FBI – but, surprise! no criminal charges resulted.

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Robusta Caffee Rockets To 16-Year High After Major Grower Vietnam Records Export Plunge

Robusta Rockets To 16-Year High After Major Grower Vietnam Records Export Plunge:

The global robusta coffee shortage continues unabated, with prices reaching new highs in London trading on Tuesday. The surge, according to Bloomberg, is directly linked to concerns over sliding bean exports from Vietnam due to ongoing droughts.

Vietnam, the world’s second-largest producer of robusta beans, recorded a 50% plunge in June exports from one year ago to 70,202 tons, according to the country’s customs department. Bloomberg calculations show this is the lowest amount of beans exported since the 2010-11 crop season.

“Dry weather continues to have an impact on production in Vietnam,” said Michael McDougall, managing director at Paragon Global Markets.

Robusta bean contracts in London rose as much as 3.5% to $4,500 a ton on Tuesday, the highest in data going back to 2008. Arabica futures in New York jumped 4%.

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Newsom’s California: Delivery Drivers Now Being Accompanied By Armed Guards Due To “Crime Concerns”

Newsom’s California: Delivery Drivers Now Being Accompanied By Armed Guards Due To “Crime Concerns”:

Things have gotten so utopian in the state of California, delivery drivers are being accompanied by armed guards due to “crime concerns” while out making deliveries.

One company, Core Mart, has started hiring the guards to escort its drivers. Which means that somewhere, in a board room, it likely made more financial sense to pay for all new security staff than it did to continue to allow drivers to get robbed (and inventory lost) as was happening prior.

California: sounds like a wonderful place to do business.

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“What The Heck?!”: United Airlines Boeing 757 Loses Wheel After LAX Takeoff

“What The Heck?!”: United Airlines Boeing 757 Loses Wheel After LAX Takeoff:

“United Airlines @united @Boeing wheel fell off after take off from LAX this morning going to Longmont, Colorado! Is this another maintenance issue?! What the heck?! husband was on flight and texted me the pilot luckily landed the plane safely,” X user SusanRealtor wrote around noon.

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