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Old 16-02-2018, 10:50 PM   #101
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China's Rapid Military Modernization Is "Remarkable," Set To Challenge West On Several Fronts
by Tyler Durden
Thu, 02/15/2018 - 21:45

China's rapid military modernization is "remarkable," and is no longer merely "catching up" with the West, reports the International Institute for Strategic Studies in their annual report on global military capabilities.

“China’s emerging weapons developments and broader defence-technological progress mean that it has become a global defence innovator” says Dr. John Chipman, Director-General and Chief Executive of the London-based think tank.

Of note, Chipman points out that China's Chengdu J-20 low-observable combat aircraft is set to challenge America's "monopoly on operational stealthy combat aircraft." As we reported yesterday, the J-20 is rumored to have already been deployed to the South China Sea along with several of China's Su-35s, to take part in a joint combat patrol over the region, according to the Chinese Ministry of Defense whose release did not mention the J-20.
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...several-fronts
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Old 16-02-2018, 10:53 PM   #102
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The End Of The Petrodollar? China Unveils Oil-Futures Launch Date
by Tyler Durden
Thu, 02/15/2018 - 19:05

After decades of dollar-hegemonic control, the world’s biggest oil buyer is finally getting its own crude-futures contract - the so-called 'petro-yuan' is born.

The start of trading, open to foreigners, will mark the end of years of delays and setbacks since China’s first attempt at a domestic contract in 1993.

Following December's final successful test, in a challenge to the world’s dollar-denominated oil benchmarks Brent and West Texas Intermediate, China will list local-currency crude futures in Shanghai on March 26, according to the nation’s securities regulator.

While some details of the contract such as the size (1,000 barrels per lot) and grades have been released, other information like the delivery depots for the crude are yet to be announced.

“The intention is to release more details as the launch date approaches,” Meidan said on Friday. “If the date has been settled, then it is pretty close to a finalized contract, because at this point, both Beijing and the Shanghai Futures Exchange can’t afford for the start-up to go wrong.”

As Bloomberg reports, China surpassed the U.S. as the world’s biggest oil importer last year, buying about 8.43 million barrels a day to feed demand from government-run as well as independent refiners.

The nation has also been hoarding millions of barrels for its Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Rather than buying how much ever crude they want, private companies have to adhere to government-issued quotas for their purchases. And this year such allocations expanded.
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...es-launch-date
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Old 21-02-2018, 10:01 PM   #103
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Old 21-02-2018, 10:29 PM   #104
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London's Property Crash Has Begun
by Tyler Durden
Tue, 02/20/2018 - 05:00

Authored by Damian Reilly via Medium.com,

The average age of a first time mum at London’s Chelsea and Westminster hospital is 37, a statistic that tells you everything you need to know about the choices supposedly affluent city dwellers are being forced to make in the capital. For the middle classes, the cost of living in London?—?the cost of getting by?—?long ago went past insane (£17,040: the cost per year of educating a four year-old child at Thomas’s school in Fulham, not including uniform). It’s the incredible price of property, of course, that’s been the engine driving this madness, ratcheting the pressure ever higher on Londoners who don’t own a home while making very wealthy, on paper at least, those who do.

For the last two decades and more, the capital’s property market to all intents and purposes has behaved like a giant Ponzi scheme played on a global scale. Money from all over the world has poured into London bricks, inflating values unrealistically in relation to wages, while the lavish bonuses paid to European bankers working in the City have also stoked momentum responsible for pushing up, for example, the average price of a London semi-detached house by 553 per cent between January 1995 and November 2017, from £133,820 to £873,603.

Over the same period, the average cost of a detached house in the capital went from £257,748 to £1,453,271.
At last, however, the party is over. London property prices, now still flailing cartoonishly in mid-air despite being well over the edge of a cliff, are at the start of what we can call, for want of a better term, a death plunge. Although the carnage is only just beginning in earnest, desperate homeowners looking to sell are already dropping asking prices by tens of thousands of pounds and more. They know the tide is going out quickly.

The reasons you would have to be clinically insane to buy property in London today are blessedly easy to understand. Describing a modern financial disaster normally requires some pretence of understanding, say, derivatives markets or the myriad immensely complex ways international banks package and trade debt. Not this time.
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...rash-has-begun
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