Read this First 6/12/2019

The Protests in Hong Kong over "the prisoner extradition to Mainland China" Bill turned violent after Legislators postponed the vote on the Bill until later this month.  Authorities trying to get crowds to disburse fired rubber bullets, tear gas, and water cannons at the crowds. Some videos show protesters hurling rocks and bottles at police.  If this much of the population of Hong Kong is against the Bill, how can the Legislature "Vote" it in?  Are the Legislators Puppets of the Chinese regime?  I guess we'll see later this month.. The House Democrats voted to try to go to court to enforce a subpoena for Attorney General Barr to testify in front of Congress even though Barr already agreed to give them access to much of Mueller’s evidence from his investigation. Do you know where House Democrats were NOT??  At the House hearing concerning first responders to the 9/11 Attacks. Comedian/TV Host and genuinely good guy, Jon Stewart was in Washington DC supporting the First Responders and spoke at the hearing to mostly EMPTY chairs where Congressmen should have been sitting. The issue is that the Victims Compensation Fund is going to close soon and many of the first responders have developed cancers due to the toxic fumes at Ground Zero.  Initially, Christie Todd Whitman, (Then head of the EPA) told the workers the air was safe.  Now, I do not blame her. She relied on the tests that scientists did and the information they told her.  She didn’t purposely put them in harm’s way. But, the fact remains the air was NOT safe.  Fireman, police, paramedics, construction crews and volunteers all were there to help and now some of them are sick because of it.. We piss money away as a country ALL THE TIME.  You just read here in the Rant that California is spending over $100 million on Illegal Immigrant healthcare. It is a DISGRACE that the 9/11 First Responders have to chose between cancer treatment and food for their families.  It’s a DISGRACE that Jon had to speak to empty chairs. It’s a DISGRACE that our Congressmen went to a meaningless vote instead of addressing the 9/11 Responders.  Never Forget? FCK YOU GUYS.  ALL you remember is campaign donors and political “Spin” opportunities. ..and good on you, Jon Stewart.  (Fair Disclosure: Jon and Tracy Stewart are my neighbors and are sensational people. They have two (going on three) farms for unwanted or neglected animals. They “Walk the Walk” . They have “rescue” goats and dogs with three legs running around their yard and farms in the next town over ...with cows that got loose on highways and horses that can’t see. ..oh..and Jon is shorter than he looks on TV) ... Out in Iowa, Trump and Biden are in the State at the same time campaigning.  Early reports of Biden’s stops say he looks “tired”. (Those are from MSNBC so they are from “HIS team”).  Geez.. He is 76.  Why the heck is he running for President?  When I am 76 I am going to be traveling, partying, and getting slapped by my girlfriend for saying inappropriate things to the waitress.  (I’m taking applications for the “Girlfriend” position.  For qualifications ...see the bottom section of EVERY RANT FOR THE PAST 17 YEARS!!!) .. Anyways, I expected Biden to crap on Trump and say he is ruining America..and expected Trump to call Biden a dummy with a low IQ...annddd guess what?  That is EXACTLY what happened. Trump threw in a few "Crooked Hilary" comparisons, too.  I am not sure why Trump is crapping on Biden.  Biden is a weak candidate with a long record in politics (that you can poke holes in).  Trump should be saying GOOD things about Biden.  Then, when Biden wins the nomination, he can point out Biden's record... and what's up with voters in Virginia??  Lt Governor Justin Fairfax is dealing with allegations of sexual assault from TWO different women..and .. Virginia voters just voted Joe Morrissey in as the Democratic Candidate for State Senate, District 16.  A few years back, Morrissey spent six months in jail for rape. (Apparently, he eventually married the girl. But, she was 17 and he was 52.  She worked in his law office.)  Voters interviewed by local papers said, "Ain't none of us perfect. Things get blown outta proportion" hmmm.. Statutory Rape is "blowing things out of proportion?"  Geez, they couldn't find a better candidate?...and Whooooa Brother could this one become a big story.  If you do not know who John McAfee is he is considered the "Godfather" of Internet Security. (In addition to being batsh*t crazy)  McAfee anti-virus software was in almost EVERY PC at one point and McAfee sold his company for billions to Intel in 2011. McAfee is an odd dude to say the least.  He is wanted in Belize in connection with the death of his former neighbor.  McAfee claims authorities in Belize are corrupt and that he had nothing to do with the crime.  McAfee's current firm is a collection of the best cybersecurity people in the world. He can protect (and Hack) just about anything.  Well, McAfee is fed up with the US Government and their attempts to collect taxes he owes. He is threatening a "31 Terabyte Dump" of information about corrupt Government officials. He says, "I am not claiming ALL of our Government is corrupt.  But, I have information on 20 Congressmen and 5 Senators that are running for re-election that I am ready to release if the IRS does not stop harassing me".  WOW .. IF ANYONE has the ability to get your private information it's THIS guy.  If this happens it will make "The Russians Hacking" and "Wikileaks" look like finger paints from first graders.  You think he is serious?  I wouldn't want to call his bluff ..  ...SPORTS:  NHL:  GAME 7 TONIGHT in BAAAHHHSTAAHHNN.  Bruins are favored because its at home.  Who Ya Got??  ... Canada gets made fun of for always being “Polite”  They say “Sorry” so much that they had it written into their laws that “Sorry is a common Canadian comment and cannot be construed as an admission of guilt” (Not kidding..look it up) .. But, after Monday night, many are wondering if that part of their culture has changed.  When Kevin Durant went down with an Achilles heel tear the crowd in Toronto started CHEERING.  Geez.. That’s what happens in PHILADELPHIA..not CANADA!!  The Toronto players yelled at the crowd to stop.  You just don’t do that.. Durant is a class player that agreed to play hurt to help his team. So, is that it Canada? Are you “Philly North” now?  OR are you “Sorry”??  .. I would like to write a glowing review of the US Women’s Soccer team but I cannot because they allow Megan Rapinoe to play on their team. They beat Thailand 13-0. But, Megan refuses to acknowledge our National Anthem.  Megan, if you do not feel like honoring the men and women that literally DIED for your rights, then GET OUT!!!  Go Play for whoever you think is better. I don’t give a crap if you’re better than FCKING PELE.  Protest whenever you feel like it.. spout off your political views whenever you want.. this is America.. the home of Freedom of expression.. But, for those 90 seconds. SHOW SOME RESPECT.  US Women’s Soccer.  Sorry, this is your last Rant Mention until Rapinoe is off the team.. ...CELEBRIDIOTS: You remember a few months ago when Madonna announced her new “World Tour” and I told you that the tired old hag had better book small venues because she is irrelevant and only her hardcore fans are coming? .. Well, she took my advice and booked small venues...and can’t even sell THEM out.  Go away HAG.  The “foul mouthed, average performance” time is over.  Not that I am going to their concerts, But Lady Gaga writes and plays her music.  She is a stellar musician.. and PINK is one of the most talented performers ALIVE.  You got NO SHOT against the Real Deal in 2019.. So, Louise. Take a seat.. and.. have you ever heard of "Reverse Photoshopping" ?? .. Britney Spears is accusing paparazzi of altering pictures to make her look fat.  What do you think?  HERE

.. I mean, I guess she looks a little chubby around the neck and face... Look, Brit. You're not 18 anymore and you're in good shape but you're not "skinny".  I think you need to get over here immediately and Ill do a thorough examination ...and.. Congrats to one of my stalkers named, Olivia Culpo...Olivia was named winner of Maxims Top 100. HERE ..  Ill make you a deal, Olivia.  Ill ask the judge to drop the restraining order and let you in the Raj Tub.  But, you have to jam with my band at our next gig.  (If you didn’t know.. she WAILS on the Cello HERE  That's her playing with the Boston Pops).   Whatttya Say, Olivia?? DEAL or NO DEAL???

From SeekingAlpha.com

The benchmark Hang Seng Index slid nearly 2% overnight as protests against Hong Kong’s controversial extradition law shut down key parts of the city, with police firing tear gas and rubber bullets to drive away thousands of demonstrators. Financial institutions also scrambled for liquid assets, triggering interbank interest rates in the territory to shoot up across the curve, with the one-month and two-month HIBOR reaching their highest level since late 2008. Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam argues the legislation is necessary to close a legal loophole that makes the city a refuge to criminals, but opponents say its approval would tear down the legal wall intended to keep Hong Kong's justice system separate from China's.

Winning streak snapped

Market focus is turning back to trade developments after President Trump said he was holding up a trade agreement with China and reiterated his stance that there might be no deal at all. The tough line on trade talks caused U.S. markets yesterday to close back at the starting line, while DJIA futures are now pointing to a 62-point decline at the open. Analysts are also starting to reassess the June market comeback, with some saying it doesn't quite make sense. "This rally is not fundamentally backed. Instead what we are seeing is a bunch of people getting swung around and now they are chasing stocks higher," said Tom Essaye, founder of The Sevens Report.

Adapting to tariffs

Nintendo (OTCPK:NTDOY) is shifting some production of its Switch videogame console to Southeast Asia from China to limit the impact of possible U.S. tariffs on Chinese-made electronics, people who work on Nintendo's supply chain told WSJ. It's not alone. Taiwan's Foxconn (OTC:FXCOF) Technology Group said yesterday that it was ready to move assembly of Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhones out of China if necessary, and Japan's Sharp (OTCPK:SHCAY), which is controlled by Foxconn, said last week that it planned to move production of personal computers to Taiwan or Vietnam.

Highlights from Tesla meeting

"It won't be long before we have a 400-mile range car," Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk said at the company's annual shareholder meeting, outlining plans to unveil a pickup truck this summer and get into semi production toward the end of 2020. Tesla is also on target to grow its entire "fleet" by 60% to 80% in 2019, he added, saying "it's hard to be profitable with that level of growth" but the company would still be cash-flow positive while growing at that rate. Auto insurance? Tesla will be able to offer policies after completion of an unspecified acquisition, as well as development of additional software.

Brexit leadership

Breaking his relative silence in the race thus far, British ex-foreign minister Boris Johnson will launch his campaign today for the Conservative Party leadership, with investors trying to gauge just how much appetite he has for a no-deal Brexit. His insistence on leaving the EU on Oct. 31, plus a threat to withhold payment of the U.K.'s divorce bill have all raised concerns among party moderates and in business, but they resonate with grass roots Tories who are firmly right-wing and anti-EU. Sterling +0.2% to $1.2743.

Qualcomm antitrust trouble

The FTC has asked District Judge Lucy Koh to deny Qualcomm's (NASDAQ:QCOM) request to delay enforcement of an antitrust ruling handed down in May, announcing that it was in the public interest because an appeal could take years. LG Electronics (OTC:LGEAF) reiterated the view of the FTC, saying it could be forced into signing another unfair deal unless Koh's protections remain in place. On May 28, Qualcomm asked to put the sweeping antitrust decision on hold as it would "radically restructure its business relationships" in ways that would be impossible to reverse if it wins an appeal. QCOM -3.3% premarket.

Mainstream adoption

Crypto exchange Coinbase's (COINB) new Visa (NYSE:V) debit card is launching in six more European countries after debuting in the U.K. in April. Coinbase U.K. CEO Zeeshan Feroz told CNBC in an interview the goal of the card is to make payments with digital currencies as seamless as paying with cash. "You can buy groceries on bitcoin and then coffee on litecoin right after," he added. The card works in stores and online at any merchant that accepts Visa.

Future of Vaca Muerta

Executives from major oil companies are expected to descend today on the southern province of Neuquen, Argentina, for a conference that will discuss the future of Vaca Muerta, a formation that could house one of the biggest reserves of shale gas and oil in the world. Businessmen want to confirm that the next government, which takes office in December, will respect current contracts and keep Vaca Muerta as a strategic resource to help the country become a net energy exporter. ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) yesterday proceeded with its Vaca Muerta expansion, detailing a project that's expected to produce as much as 55,000 boe/d within 5 years.

Busy IPO market

Shares in the international unit of China National Tobacco - a state monopoly that accounts for 40% of global cigarette production - jumped as much as 10% in their trading debut in Hong Kong, on a limp day for Asian stocks. Cybersecurity group CrowdStrike (CRWD), which will begin trading today on the Nasdaq, priced its IPO above its expected price range at $34 per share, raising $612M and valuing the company at $6.8B. A Bloomberg report also suggested that Slack Technologies (WORK) will be valued by investors at $16B-$17B when it lists its shares publicly next week.

No new orders for Boeing

Boeing (NYSE:BA) reported no new commercial aircraft orders in May, marking the second straight month that the planemaker's orders were at a standstill in the face of its 737 Max crisis. May deliveries meanwhile fell 56% Y/Y to 30 planes, as transfers of new 737 MAX jets remained halted. Investors' next focus is the coming week's Paris Air Show, which will determine if the trends will continue. Rival Airbus (OTCPK:EADSY) delivered 81 aircraft in May, up 59% Y/Y.

What else is happening...

Contributor Kirk Spano says oil stocks are priced for Armageddon.

3M (NYSE:MMM) to take $160M charge as it suspends Venezuelan operations.

Uber (NYSE:UBER) taps Melbourne for international launch of flying taxis.

GrubHub (NYSE:GRUB) investors cheer closure of Amazon Restaurants (NASDAQ:AMZN).

Veggie burger maker Beyond Meat (NASDAQ:BYND) tumbles 25% after JPMorgan cut.

CBD products hitting shelves in nearly 1,000 Kroger (NYSE:KR) stores.

Again? Mattel (NASDAQ:MAT) rejects another merger bid from MGA Entertainment

KKR seeks piece of German publishing giant Axel Springer (OTC:AXELF).

Not a fan... Ackman opposes United Technologies (NYSE:UTX)-Raytheon (NYSE:RTN) merger.

Citing consumer harm, ten U.S. states sue to stop Sprint (NYSE:S)-T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS) deal.

Today's Markets 

In Asia, Japan -0.3%. Hong Kong -1.9%. China -0.6%. India -0.5%.  In Europe, at midday, London -0.6%. Paris -0.6%. Frankfurt -0.4%.  Futures at 6:20, Dow -0.2%. S&P -0.2%. Nasdaq -0.4%. Crude -2.6% to $51.91. Gold +0.6% to $1338.80. Bitcoin +2.2% to $7986.  Ten-year Treasury Yield -2 bps to 2.12%

Today's Economic Calendar

7:00 MBA Mortgage Applications 8:30 Consumer Price Index 10:00 Atlanta Fed's Business Inflation Expectations 10:30 EIA Petroleum Inventories 1:00 PM Results of $24B, 10-Year Note Auction 2:00 PM Treasury Budget

Regards,

Roger “Raj”  Searing rajsearing@gmail.com

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