When Markets Disintegrate

I wrote this on December 15, ARSH 2011, and, sure enough, as the markets descend into undeniable farce and total government/bankster manipulation that not even the most ignorant “civilian” can fail to recognize, I saw THIS STORY on ZeroHedge today about how the premium for physical bullion is exploding, which is precisely what my article describes.

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Finally, a very simplistic explanation of how the cash commodity markets are soon going to decouple from the futures markets. This is a little complex, but stay with me. I think this is important to understand because none of us who have lived our whole lives in the U.S. have ever seen a market disintegrate.

The threat (or promise) of delivery upon expiration is what keeps the futures markets tethered to the cash markets. Up until now, if an unreasonably wide spread between the futures price and the underlying physical commodity market got too out of whack, a process called “arbitrage” would kick in. Arbitrage is when a party simultaneously buys and sells on two separate but related markets in order to capture an inefficient spread between those two markets.

I’m going to use precious metals as my example commodity because there are alot of metals guys reading this, and because the metals markets will be the big tell in term of when decoupling and thus total futures market disintegration is upon us. But these examples apply to all of the physical commodities.

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