Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest news items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. Most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor, JWR. Today, I speculate on how more PV-equipped vans will soon hit the market, for use as Bug-Out Vehicles. (See the Tangibles Investing section.)

Precious Metals:

This is some now slightly dated but still incisive analysis: Violent Price Divergences Between Real Physical Precious Metal and Futures Prices

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Currency Is Being Created ‘On Scale Never Seen Before In The History of Mankind’

Economy & Finance:

PMI Inches Down to 49.1%, But Storm Clouds Brewing

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H.L. sent us this: Japan using BILLIONS in stimulus money to lure its firms OUT of China as fallout over coronavirus continues

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At Wolf Street: QE-4 Cut in Half this Week. Fed’s Helicopter Money for Wall Street & the Wealthy Hits $1.8 Trillion in 4 Weeks


H.L. also sent this: “We Can’t Give Our Product Away” – Farmers Toss Thousands Of Acres Of Fruits, Veggies As Sales Plummet. JWR’s Comments: There is truth to the old saying:  “There Ain’t Such as Thing as a Free Lunch.”  But there is such a thing as a Taxpayer-Funded lunch. That is a public school lunch. And when they stop serving those millions of lunches, then it sends shockwaves through food commodities markets.

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Nick Cunningham at OilPrice News reports: Oil Could Fall Back To $20

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Trump Backs Moon Mining Initiative With Executive Order


A “must-read” article, over at Zero Hedge: The Biggest Risk in the Global Financial System that No One is Discussing

Here is a key quote from the lengthy article:

“Of the $523.96 trillion notional amount of OTC interest rate derivatives, 38% and 25.8% respectfully were denominated in US dollars and Euros, comprising the lion’s share of nearly two-thirds of all global OTC interest rate derivative contracts. Of the latest figures of $99 trillion of OTC ForEx derivative contracts that exist, an overwhelming 88% were underwritten for the US dollar. In addition, Central Banker interest rate decisions in 2020 that contradicted the narratives they publicly presented in 2019, and the reason I postulated in August 2019 that it was near impossible for US Central Bankers to commit to any interest rate policy other than to cut interest rates, was based upon my research of the OTC interest rate and ForEx derivative markets. I believe it is reasonable to conclude that US Central Bankers’ interest rate decisions since then have confirmed my assumptions about the global OTC interest rate derivative market. For the same reason that US Central Bankers could not raise overnight interbank lending rates in America much above 2.5% as the maximum rate, European Central Bankers also could not raise their marginal facility interest rate from its paltry 2019 0.25% level to even rates in the low single digits.”


Crypto Market Cycle: Data Shows Bitcoin On Pace For Post-Halving Bull Run

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Ar Jameson Lopp’s site:  Announcing Casa Titanium

Tangibles Investing:

Coronavirus travel restrictions have profoundly disrupted van life for the ‘yoga, surfing, van dogs, drone cameras, and Man Buns” crowd. YouTube is now replete with “we’re stranded” videos from van dwellers. Ditto for full-time RV-dwellers. And even from some expedition vehicle owners. Some of the videos are downright pitiful. To quote Mal: “Seriously, there could be tears.” Thousands of these folks are now hunkering down in Mom and Dad’s basement. I predict that many of them may decide to take advantage of this self-isolation time to buy and equip new vehicles and sell off their old ones. Others may give up the lifestyle entirely. This will probably mean that  a large number of photovoltaic power-equipped vans will soon hit the market. Many of these are quite stealthy–designed to outwardly look like a tradesman’s utility vehicle. Needless to say, such roomy vehicles are ideal for use as Bug Out Vehicles (BOVs), by preppers. My advice: Start watching Craigslist, Hemmings Auto News, and various used conversion van sales web sites. You may find a lot of very nicely-outfitted low mileage vans (like this one) that are likely being sold at a loss.


SurvivalBlog and its Editors are not paid investment counselors or advisers. Please see our Provisos page for our detailed disclaimers.

News Tips:

Please send your economics and investing news tips to JWR. (Either via e-mail of via our Contact form.) These are often especially relevant, because they come from folks who closely watch specific markets. If you spot any news that would be of interest to SurvivalBlog readers, then please send it in. News from local news outlets that is missed by the news wire services is especially appreciated. And it need not be only about commodities and precious metals. Thanks!


  1. It does make me wonder if perhaps we will be heading back towards a time when people needed to do “real work” to earn a living and all of those who were social media personalities, earned their “living” by hosting a You-tube channel that followed their life in a van driving all over, “retired” at age 40 etc might be having to rethink their lives. I know I was engaged in a nomadic existence for the past few years and managed some of this by pet/housesitting for travelers all over the place. It was fun but so glad I stopped in time and am settled down now in my “Siberian outpost”. A person I have pet-sat for has been in touch and she told me that one of her other petsitters is stuck in NYC watching pets and a home for people who are stuck in India! What fun! I suspect that trying to live in an RV or van right now is tough and getting people to fund your little “project” who are all laid off from work themselves even tougher.

  2. I agree with your first statement Ani – I too think life will migrate back towards useful skills and productive labor.
    My children are teens and would occasionally mention their observance of some of these new-media celebrity types… curious how to replicate their experience (of touring the world on someone elses dime and retiring early). They understood fundamentally it was nigh impossible, but still desired for the luxury. THAT is what needs to change to affect our society. So long as celebutards and athletes are held up and real hard working folks like Mike Rowe and the My Pillow guy are ridiculed, hard working realists will always be 2nd fiddle.
    The media is responsible for this. That is the problem, they are the enemy poisoning our minds and distorting our views. Disconnect from the beast and save yourself and your family. The future will be exceedingly cold and cruel – the pendulum will swing just as far to the one side as it did the other. Newtons Laws say so.

  3. People don’t realize it, but the bond market is several times larger than the stock market. And when the bond market breaks for some reason, unknown to the average investor or person, we’ll all find out about it in a very public way shortly thereafter. A few Zero Hedge articles have talked about it.

  4. So the schools shut down, and suddenly things like milk, fruits, and veggies have an oversupply and are being “dumped” by the farmers. But have the children magically disappeared? Aren’t they eating at home? So theoretically, shouldn’t the same amount of food be required to feed them? Or were the schools just purchasing and preparing food that they later just dumped, uneaten, into the garbage? Such waste!

    Dear farmers, would you please “dump” some of your overabundance into the hands of folks who have lost their jobs and have no income due to the present situation? Can we go to the farms with our bottles and baskets and receive some of the food that the farmers have been ordered to dump, rather than it just being wasted?

    Something about this story just doesn’t make sense.

    1. @Ma G

      Part of the problem is that the farms that are dumping milk and plowing in veggies for the most part are only set up to wholesale their products. They lack any mechanism by which to do direct sales to consumers or even to donate this food to the needy. And as far as dairy farms go, not only do they lack a way to do direct sales but it’s generally illegal as well.

      1. Exactly Ani. The “set in place” supply chains will take a while to redirect, re-do contracts, etc.
        whole businesses with all their parts and pieces were set up just to deliver to say, one school district. Now what do they do now? They may not have huge warehouses filled with perishable and non perishable foods, maybe their contract only allows same day pickup/delivery from warehouse “A”. Now warehouse “A” is stuck with their supply.
        Lather, rinse, repeat.

        It will take time to redirect food and other items needed daily by us consumers.
        I liken it to a slinky, or being the 5th car at a red light that turns green. You can’t go until the guy ahead of you does, but his car just died and it’s a one lane road.

        1. @ Tom in Oregon

          Yes, and it’s not just food of course. It’s been theorized that part of the great “toilet paper shortage” isn’t just people panicking and buying out the stores of TP. Prior to the lockdowns most people would have been spending time in offices, schools, restaurants, gyms etc where they would have been using commercial style TP as generally found in public bathrooms. Now the demand for this style of TP has dropped precipitously but the supply of the consumer style TP hasn’t ramped up to fill the need. And one can’t just substitute large cases of the sorts of TP found in a public restroom for your basic packs of 4 or 12 Charmin found at the grocery store. (Well you could, but that would take some work-arounds in the supply chain.) Thus, a shortage of consumer -style TP but I’m sure the warehouses are full of cases of public restroom style TP.

      2. There are two parallel food supply chains, one that supplies restaurants and one that supplies grocery stores. Foods that are packaged and labeled for restaurants aren’t suitable for retail sale.

        But you can imagine that business managers are scrambling to adjust.

    2. The reason that this story doesn’t make sense to you, is because you’ve left out a large portion of it. Farmers and Ranchers don’t drop off their products at the back door of the grocery store or at the door to the school kitchen. There are processors involved in almost every aspect of food production. Working with the processors involves contracts which must be abided by, or you’re in violation and will promptly lose your contract. And as Ani has correctly pointed out, the farmer and rancher is not set up with the mechanical means to suddenly cut out the middle man and just put their product in your “bottles and baskets”. It isn’t anywhere near that simple. Furthermore, there are laws that prohibit a lot of sales like that, especially dairy products. The dairy farmer would promptly lose his Grade A dairy license if he tried that.

      We raise dairy cows, beef cows, and crops, so I am speaking from personal experience and from the position of being directly impacted by what’s going on in our markets currently. Believe me when I tell you, farmers and ranchers get no pleasure whatsoever from having to “dump” our products! When that happens, that’s our own paychecks being “dumped”! We all take great pride in what we raise and feeding the citizens of our country, and the very last thing we want to do is throw our products away!

      The dairy farmer sells his milk to a milk processor who then pasteurizes and bottles it, and then sells it to stores and schools. The beef rancher sells his beef at a livestock auction, where it then goes to a slaughter house and the packer then sells it to stores and schools. The vegetable and crop farmer sells his product to a processing plant, who then packages and distributes it to stores and schools. All of these involve contracts, and it is virtually impossible to cut out the middle man.

      Please don’t point fingers at the farmers here, until you understand the whole picture. The farmer is NOT choosing or deciding to dump his product! They are being forced to dump it, because the processor involved is making them! The processors are unable to move the product through the supply chain for various reasons …. schools are closed, restaurants are closed, and the workers in many plants are now sick. There are many reasons for the supply chain disruption. But it’s the very last thing that we farmers and ranchers ever want to see happen! And when you see it happening, that’s our own paycheck and income for the year being dumped! If you think it bothers you to see food going to waste, how do you think WE feel about it?!

      1. @ Farmers’ Wife

        Exactly. Which of course is pretty sad. There’s milk being dumped here in VT. I’d love to be able to just show up with jars and buy it straight out of the bulk tank but unless they are set up to sell raw milk(and these are NOT the dairy farms having to dump milk now) it’s totally illegal for them to sell it to me. If things get bad enough and this goes on long enough I expect this will change and farmers and would-be customers will just take matters into their own hands. We haven’t reached that point(yet).

        1. Ani,

          Yes, it is sad indeed. Most of the dumping is happening in the East and the Midwest (so far). And every dairy farmer I know would much rather sell it to you, or give it to a food bank, before dumping it. I agree, if things deteriorate further and it goes on a long time, both farmers and customers absolutely will take matters into their own hands. It will have to get worse than it is right now. But I can tell you, conversations about that very issue are already happening in the farm and ranch circles that we are a part of out here in the West.

          1. @ Farmers’ Wife

            Yes, I’m here in VT and milk is already being dumped which is just insanity. I’ve ordered a thermometer for stove-top pasteurization- used to do this with my goat milk for cheese. I figure if things stay like this or get worse I’ll be all set to buy some milk locally from a farm ready to take the law into their own hands along with me! I didn’t pasteurize our own goat milk for drinking(just for cheese) but would pasteurize milk from a large farm I’m not 100% sure of so that’s another reassurance for the farmer. All of this makes me think of Joel Salatin and his wonderful book “Everything I Want to Do is Illegal” which always points out to me the insanity of our laws regarding farming, sale of farm products etc. When I used to make goat cheese I had people begging me to sell it(kept it for household use and gave it to friends and neighbors). I couldn’t though as the costs to set up a dairy processing facility that would meet the state standards was beyond my means. Plus, being off-the-grid, I already knew the battle I was going to have to deal with that piece of it. So I didn’t- but my feta cheese was the best! 😉

      2. Continuing this conversation about the supply chain and processors not operating for various reasons. Most Americans do not know how to use whole foods. The American food system was developed over time into a well oiled machine where this piece of the food chain comes from here and another piece comes from over there. So this XYZ food that Americans love so much is suddenly unavailable because 2 or 3 pieces of it aren’t getting to their destination in a timely manner. It isn’t just a matter of dumping 200 tons of zucchini at the food pantry. How many Americans even know how to can? And if they did, would they know what to do with that many jars of zucchini? Milk is an ingredient in many, many foods, and with the breakdown in the supply chain at any and every level, the demand isn’t there.

        1. Anon,

          You are absolutely correct regarding this “well oiled machine” that the average American consumer has become accustomed to. And this machine was started over 60 years with the advent of supermarkets, followed by packaged convenience foods, and on to the abundance of fast food drive-thrus. Fast forward a few decades, and it has become much easier for people to whistle through a Super WalMart and grab convenience foods or whip through the drive-thru on their way home from work. Sadly, many people no longer cook on a regular basis for their families. And no, they have absolutely no clue how to can. As Ma G stated below, they should be using this “spare time” to learn some of these skills, but unfortunately, that would require common sense, something that is sadly lacking.

          The milk supply chain has evolved over the same period of time, partially due to trying to keep up and adapt to the changing habits of the consumers, and also due to government intrusion and control of the industry. Go back 40 or 50 years, and many, many farms milked cows. There were many small creameries in the towns to process the milk, cream, etc. But along came the government, who took over the control of the pricing of all dairy commodities, and profits flew right out the window. Many farmers quit milking cows, and as a result, many small creameries closed their doors. This was replaced by just a few large processing plants, and the farmer now had no choices on where to sell his product. Fast forward even further, and these large plants became “specialty” plants. For example, one plant is equipped to only process school milk into little cartons. That’s all they do. Another is set up to only do yogurt or cheese. And on and on. That all works just rosy, until there’s a hiccup. And now we’ve just had much more than a hiccup. So if you’re the farmer that sends his milk to the plant that only does school milk, and schools are suddenly closed, they can’t process your milk because their equipment is designed to do only that. There may be a processing plant a few hundred miles away, but the farmer doesn’t have any marketing contract with them, and they are probably already running at capacity and so have no incentive to send a semi over that far to pick up additional milk. So the farmer is told he has no options but to dump his milk. And so goes the breakdown of the supply chain.

          And that’s just the dairy industry. The same kinds of problems are rampant in every aspect of agriculture’s supply chain in this country. It’s a very sad situation, and one that won’t be easily remedied.

      3. Farmer’s Wife, I’m not blaming the farmers at all. I’m frustrated with the complicated processes that have been set up over the years to get in the way of free enterprise. It shouldn’t be illegal to say, “I just harvested my carrots. Would you like to buy some?” or “I just finished milking the cows. Bring your clean jug and I’ll pour you a gallon.”

        I’m on your side. I know it’s your income that’s being poured down the drain. I’m just saying it shouldn’t be “wrong” for me and others to try to help you by offering to purchase directly from you what would otherwise be wasted. And it shouldn’t be “wrong” for farmers to donate to food banks what would otherwise be wasted.

        And Anon, if people don’t know how to preserve food, there are plenty of places for them to learn. YouTube is a great resource for this. One would think that if people are out of work they would have time to invest in learning important skills such as this.

        1. Ma G,

          Thank you so much for your comments. I also want to apologize to you if I came across seeming too harsh. That was not my intent. I have read so many comments lately (in the newspapers and on other sites) blasting the farmers for dumping their products, and it is very frustrating to read, since no farmer that I know of would ever willingly choose to throw both their product and their income away. Regardless, if anything I said, or the way I said it, offended you, I would ask you to please forgive me.

          I agree with you 110 percent that things have gotten far, far too complicated, and free enterprise has gone by the wayside. You are absolutely correct that it shouldn’t be wrong or illegal for the farmer to sell some or all of his product as he chooses to. In fact, both consumers and farmers would benefit greatly from that scenario. We have lobbied hard for exactly that for many years, but always run into a brick wall.

          Yes, the waste is horrible, and if we could legally and logistically put wheels under our bulk milk tank and pull it to the food bank and give it away, we would do that in a heartbeat. Sadly, the entire agriculture industry has become very complicated, as I tried to explain in my reply comment above to Anon. Things will have to get much, much worse than they currently are in order for the entire system to have radical change. It is just as frustrating to the farmer as it is to the consumer.

          1. I suggest people read a fantastic book by Joel Salatin that really looks at how all sorts of direct marketing from farms to customers has been deemed illegal. He is one of my personal heroes in the ag world.

            “Everything I Want To Do Is Illegal”- Joel Salatin

            And then if you haven’t read his other books, dive in.

        2. Ma G, you are so right. We are fortunate in some parts of the country to have local dairy, vegetable, and meat farmers who sell to us directly.

          My heart goes out to farmers who are welded into the “industrial food model system”. The cows don’t stop producing milk when the demand disappears.

          Even as I pray for all the visible workers in this situation, I now add you struggling farmers to my prayers. I hope you are able to find ways to meet your debts until the system once again accepts the bounty you produce.

          Carry on, in grace

  5. Am I the only one who finds it puzzling and disturbing that parents expect the government to feed their children?? It seems that when you have given birth to your children you would assume the responsibility to feed them. How did parents ever get the idea that it wasn’t their basic duty to do so ?

      1. Gatto — multiple winner of Teacher Of The Year for the entire state — and his UNDERGROUND HISTORY OF AMERICAN EDUCATION is required reading.
        The government library in Springfield Oregon has a copy.

        After reading it:
        If you participated, you quickly realize the reasons for some of your failures.

        If you contemplate giving your favorite rifle to the government agents to keep for eight hours every day, then expect the government agents to return your favorite rifle in better condition… oh, wait… you are keeping your favorite rifle at home, but you are only sending your kids, well, OK, that’s acceptable.

          1. As a former teacher who remembers when things began to go downhill in education, I can promise you that it all began with state testing requirements which use criterion referenced tests, not standardized ability tests. These criterion referenced tests must be taught or else… A teacher’s class scores are kept and used for teacher evaluations. Assignment of students is highly political and teachers who are political favorites get the most capable students. In our state, administrators whose test scores for “certain segments” of the school population, not the top students by any means, get upwards of $10,000 personally. This money is not given to the teachers for supplies, but it goes to the administrator as a bonus, compliments of our state legislature. So top scoring students are not supported, just the “certain segments”, and everything in the school revolves around the “certain segment” student’s scores on the state test. And the state test questions are established by some teachers who are given the opportunity to work on those. So your child’s progress is determined not by a recognized standardized ability test, but by a set of questions determined by a group of teachers who go in the summer to decide which questions are important. Also, time in instruction of Social Studies, government, civics, etc and science were cut down from 5 days week instruction to 2 lessons a week so more time could be given for students to read library books and take computerized tests on them. No instruction in the reading of the books, no vocabulary instructions, no guided reading, just do it yourself reading and testing. Small town schools are highly political as to family and friends getting jobs, getting the students with the fewer behavioral problems, getting the extra pay for summer work, etc. Teachers who were old enough to remember what students were ” then you will be written up and graded down on yearly evaluations.
            Those students who were capable and motivated were “dumbed down” and quickly saw that to achieve they only have to learn the questions on the test and will quickly tell you that they do not need to know anything not on the test, perhaps 15-20 questions in each subject for the year. I did not home school my children years ago, but if I had to do it today, then it would be well worth it for instilling religious values, character building, and learning more than the answers to a very few questions. Teaching students to learn for the sake of learning died years ago. That’s what happened in our schools.

    1. In NYC they waited to close the schools as so many kids get 2 or even 3 meals a day at school and some even get their laundry done there. I don’t want to have any children harmed but am puzzled that so many parents give birth to children they expect others to support on a regular basis, not just in a crisis like this one.

      1. Unfortunately, Ani, the alternative for many of these parents is abortion. Many don’t want to have a baby. They usually don’t start intending to have the state look after their kids. Some others have romantic notions of being able to “do it all”. Reality bites.

        One of my sisters is raising her daughter’s child. That one is not going to be provided for by the state as long as my sis ter is on the case.

        A friend raised her four grandkids as her mentally ill daughter would not submit to birth control.

        This situation offers us no easy answers.

        Carry on, in grace

    2. One of our friends is a school bus driver. The school district is presently loading her bus with meals that she is then delivering to the homes of the school children each day. This is helping the families and also the food vendors and farmers in the area. So I guess the school district expenses will stay about the same for this year. The teachers are employed leading “online” school. The kitchen staff is still making meals. The bus drivers are delivering food instead of transporting the students to and from school. I wonder what the health department thinks of this system.

    3. I’ve been saying for over 10 years now (tongue in cheek), “We don’t have (m)any freedoms left, except Freedom From Responsibility.” There are a lot of parents who do not want the responsibility of caring for their children; their life is “all about ME”.

      I finally figured out that the only way to understand really crazy stuff is to look at it upside down. If you think, Why would someone do that? then, just think why you would NOT do that, and realize a lot of people think the exact opposite way; in other words, they don’t think at all — they just do what they are told.

    4. I am a middle school secretary, and let me tell you, the food waste in my school is a crime! At least 40% of the 625 students in my building get free or reduced price breakfasts and lunches. (This in an area where decent jobs were plentiful before the virus hit.) Most of the 40% are “direct cert”, meaning that they automatically qualify for free meals because they are getting another form of assistance through the state (think ‘food stamps’ or free health insurance). The state food guidelines mandate that students must take each food component – fruit, vegetable, protein, etc. Fruit and vegetables are rarely eaten; whole pieces of fruit, dumped in the trash, is the norm. However, these same students dumping perfectly good food, have had cash loaded to their lunch accounts to buy ice cream, various snacks, and sugary drinks. They have money for what they WANT, not what they NEED. Not to mention, a good portion of these kids are fat – I’m not talking a few extra pounds, I’m talking FAT! A week after schools were closed a system was set in place for ANY student in the district to pick up food via a drive thru whether or not they qualify for the free or reduced program.

  6. Re: Ma G – Farmers dumping food, These farms are under contract, some don’t even own the livestock they care for. the middle men pay the farmer to raise their animals or they purchase the livestock or produce from the farmers, THEN they sell it to the processor companies. Both the middleman and the food processor can claim losses under the national emergency that are very lucrative because they have not paid the farmer for the product yet ( where the farmer HAS paid for the cost of raising that product ). Many processing plants use foreign or illegal workers . These workers have “gone to ground” so are not available to process the food.
    Google: illegal workers in the food processing industry USA
    We as a country NEED to return our manufacturing, medical drugs, and food processing back into the hands of American owned companies who hire American citizens ( and American citizens need to get off their “I’m too good to work in a “dirty job” attitudes). Just my opinion, thanks for the soapbox.

    1. ( and” American citizens need to get off their “I’m too good to work in a “dirty job” attitudes).”

      Agreed. When I was a high schooler and college kid, I mowed lawns (in addition to working at a day camp), and worked as a dishwasher at a local restaurant. I made a ton of money and enjoyed it. Nowadays those jobs are all taken by illegals so kids don’t even have an opportunity to get started in a “dirty” job and see it’s not that bad. Supposedly no Americans want those jobs but they aren’t even available.

  7. I recently saw two vehicles with “For Sale by Owner” in windshields and parked near grocery store. Had not seen this in years past.

    This article notes how cars — esp used rental cars — are piling up unsold as car dealers traffic drops to near zero.

    As recession hits, people may try to sell the second car in the household for money. Flea markets probably banned in urban areas but Craiglist / Ebay might be a way to monitor degree of financial difficulty as jobless unload personal property.

    We may see a drop in the market for houses as well — and a rise in mortgage defaults. Real estate is closed down in my suburban area — kinda hard to spray prospective buyers with bleach as they line up to tromp through the house. But there is a subgroup who really NEED to sell their home — and will be forced into price concessions. Plus house values have a direct link to local employment rate and high wages — if a local depression hits, the house values will drop like a rock.

    My big concern is that the stock market is undergoing a continual cycle of Pump and Dump funded by the US Treasury. Done —for a while– to let the Big Money move into safe harbors but without an underlying real basis.

    Big Money is like a big oil tanker — can NOT exit from one investment for another quickly lest it cause prices to crash and hence devalue its own assets. Takes times to rotate into safe harbors (cash, short term Treasuries, gold, real assets,etc,)

    But when it has moved as much as it can, then its political puppets in Washington are told to pull the pillars and let the roof fall.

  8. I am starting to see price drops on used vehicles in our local area and a bit more supply. Historically decent used cars sell at elevated prices around here but that is changing. Many owners will eventually have to go through the reposession cycle as they still owe money to their lender, and if that pace picks up in earnest is when we’ll see significant downward pressure on vehicle pricing. I expect manufacturers to offer very attractive deals on new cars and trucks including 0% down, 0% interest for qualified buyers. It’s tempting but I’ll be buying used.

    In fact, if I can find another older Honda CR-V AWD with low mileage I’d be a happy camper. They are reliable, easy to work on and hold their value.

    Regarding JWR’s comments on vehicles, yes we are seeing more RVs and adventure type vehicles and trailers for sale. The owners aren’t dumb. Many will try to offload non-producing assets before everyone else dumps their stuff on the market.

    I know this is off topic a little but if you’re in the market for a used utility trailer I’m suddenly seeing more than usual available. Manufacturers will need to compete against this supply as well.

  9. It could be that many are waking up to the fact that our society is fragile, and may suddenly see the need to become survivalists.
    Given the possible glut of RV’s that may come onto the market, these might make good solutions for housing for friends and relatives who may wish to bug out to your location. Trailers, motorhomes, and vans, can also serve as storage sheds for their stuff. BTW, it is entirely possible, and safe to install a smaller wood stove. The most important thing to check on an RV is it’s roof. Any sign of water stains on the ceiling would immediately disqualify it from my list. And even if it apparently has a good roof, cover it with a tarp to prevent any possibility that a leak might develop and go unnoticed while in storage. Of course a large storage shed can serve in the same way, but it cannot be used as apart of an ’emergency’ plan to flee the region.

  10. i would buy a sprinter camper if i hadn’t already owned one. just 6 years ago i was one of those people who owned a sprinter van and used it to camp and surf and travel around. it is amazing how now my wife and i are all into preparedness now. we don’t want to travel let alone go to the beach, we just want to garden and develop new skills. we will buy a remote place in northern nh in a couple years and talk about even moving to the redoubt. so i guess don’t over look all of those nomads with camper vans, some of them will turn out all right.

  11. I’ve spent some time straining to look into the future to identify the second and third order effects of the shutdown. I’m set, but I worry about my adult children and their families. Life is precarious unless you can, God willing, depend primarily upon yourself, your family, and your local community. I thought the supply chain issues were mostly transportation related, but now I understand, somewhat, how complex it is, as the Rancher above explained. I hope this crisis forces dramatic change in how we grow food and how it’s distributed.

    1. Me too, SaraSue.

      Even before this covid issue happened, I had recently mentioned to my husband that the next new business boom would be a totally new platform for farming. I envisioned a larger network of the “farmer’s market” approach where food is grown and sold to consumers in the immediate area only, with food becoming somewhat more seasonally available depending on the parameters of the farmers greenhouse. Being the daughter and granddaughter of farmers, I also think we will ultimately see monoculture give way to a more diverse approach.

      Regardless, our farmers and ranchers are the smartest, most determined, hard working, and adaptable among us. If there’s a way to turn things around and make a successful run of something, they will certainly be among the first to “get ‘er done”. I watched my own father work 18 hour days 9 months out of every year. The other 3 months of the year he “relaxed” by working 12 hour days. He was successful – but he also sure as heck earned it.

    2. SaraSue,

      In reality, transportion issues are actually the least of the problems in the supply chain. As I explained above in my reply comment to Anon, the “well oiled machine” of the food chain from farmer to dinner table is far, far more complicated than most consumers realize. It has evolved to this over several decades, and unfortunately, in order to make the dramatic changes that you are hoping for, I’m afraid that things would have to be much, much worse than they currently are. The farmers would love to see change as well, but unfortunately for most, their hands are tied.

      1. And even where local farmers are set up to deal directly with customers such as in a Farmers” Market and transportation is just a pick-up truck that’s problematic now. Here in VT they have shut down Farmers’ Markets as “non-essential”. So even with a direct chain of sales from grower to customer we have a problem. CSA’s are still operable and some growers are taking orders online and having people come to the farm to pick-up or meeting people in parking lots. I hope people wake up soon!

  12. I had noticed recently that our local grocery stores have trouble keeping meat on the shelves so i bought an extra beef to go with some i had in the barn for my customers. Had the butcher keep out the choicest cuts and keep a sign by the road and done a brisk buisness. Fit in well with some firewood i had to sell too. Keep your options open out there!

  13. The family is God’s plan for our world. Unfortunately, modern life has split apart the family. … The collective knowledge of an extended family is greater than the knowledge learned by one person.

    For example:
    The billionaire Michael Bloomberg is extremely smart and knowledgeable about what the New York Stock-Exchange needs, and how to run a business. … BUT, when it comes to farming, Michael Bloomberg is an >idiot. He said, “I could teach anybody … to be a farmer. … You dig a hole, you put a seed in, you put dirt on top, add water, up comes the corn.”
    ……. Michael Bloomberg needed an Uncle Guido to grab little Mike by his shirt collar and teach him, “Don’t pretend you know everything. When you talk about things you don’t know about, people will think you’re an >idiot.”

    We seem to be coming out of the Wuhan >Flu crisis. Is it a test from God? Will we learn? Will a crisis happen again, and will it be the same or worse?
    Survivalblog has excellent recommendations for storage food and water filters. Unfortunately, most people wait and panic buy only when a crisis occurs. Plan now to buy what is needed. +Read the survival articles once again; they’re obviously a good source of ~survival information.

    We’ve all seen on the news, people fighting over Toilet Paper at Walmart. In some places, they’re letting large numbers of criminals out of jail, because of the Wuhan >Flu. [They seem to be in the same areas, where the politicians want to confiscate guns too.] … Survivalblog has excellent information about protecting the home area.
    The USA is fortunate in having a President that has actually worked at a >real job. The current President understands supply chains. To build a project, everything has to come together at the same time. … To operate a resort, similar events have to occur at the right time. Many of our current politicians ~just know how to take a bribe. Who will be in charge the next time a crisis occurs?

    Michael Bloomberg seems to be a very honest man. However, he’s still an idiot about some things. Joe Biden is senile; +Sleepy Joe, Hillary and Cuomo apparently make side deals for themselves and family, when supposedly working for the >public interests.

    There are a number of people that can manage the USA during a crisis. Unfortunately, one political party denigrates the US Military. A General has to make everything arrives at the right time. The supply chain is crucial; +the ‘Army travels on its stomach.’
    George ‘blood and guts’ Patton understood basic needs along with military tactics. [From a Military Document about logistics (supply)] =

    “The most important lesson for today’s joint logistician is to make every effort to properly equip and support each individual soldier, sailor, airman, or marine. Patton led from both the front and rear.
    He strongly demanded additional gasoline and ammunition for his forces; however, requests for dry socks, hot chow, or replacement clothing would be worded in similarly strenuous terms.
    His logisticians understood the importance of personal items in maintaining morale and overall fighting ability.”

    (All over the world, military dictatorships arise to ‘get things done’ for the populace. God Bless America, and our avoidance of a dictator.)

    The mothers in large families should be a good >source of what’s needed in a crisis, especially when things are no longer available. … +No husband should ask his wife to go to Walmart, and >fight over toilet paper. A man is bigger and stronger. Fighting in the aisles of Walmart should be a man’s job (actually). (Please don’t mention your mother-in-laws’ ability to fight)

    Stay safe; plan ahead. Use Survivalblog for a list of needed preps. The articles and >comments have useful information. ……. The USA might have a >future politician in charge, that only knows how to take a >bribe. There are many >talented Civil Servants that actually run the USA. But also, many Civil Servants only have a skill to sleep on the job. [Prep today; the future is always problematic.]

    1. There’s an oft-quoted military maxim that’s been attributed to everyone from Washington to Patton: “Amateurs talk tactics…professionals talk logistics”. A solid understanding of logistics is crucial whether running a household or an Army, and a lot of prepping is based on just that. We need to use this opportunity to not only identify problems in our nation’s logistical operations, but in our own household plans as well, so that we can improve them as we move forward.

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