So goes the theme to the sitcom The Golden Girls.
We’re throwing a big party here in Port Douglas. We would have invited everyone we knew. But there were only so many tickets.
‘The Great Repression: The Battle for Your Wealth in an Age of Financial Tyranny’ is a sold-out show. Even if you could get your hands on a spare ticket, we’re already off-and-running. Our MC, Kerry Stevenson, kicked things off this morning. (You can still ‘be here’ in the virtual sense, though. Find out about 20% discounted recordings package here.)
We’re at the Sheraton Mirage Resort. Resplendent after a just-completed renovation. Although, as Dear Leader Kris Sayce pointed out last night over a seafood dinner, it has a slight ‘80s Florida Golden Girls-tinge to the décor.
It’s a slightly odd place for us to converge, in a way, given the reason we’re here.
The goal is to throw some of the brainiest contrarian thinkers in the world into one room for two days. And to nut out strategies ordinary folks can use to fight back against the financial elites who are making such a pigs-ear of things.
The irony is that this place looks very much like the elite’s stomping ground. I’m positive a couple of cackling central bankers just whizzed past me in a golf cart.
We — the repressed savers and investors — are gathering because we are sick of being held to ransom by insane governments and central banks drunk on debt…and growing ever more desperate.
They — the governments and their cronies, the institutions, the fund managers, financial planners, the stockbrokers, the real estate agents, and most investment journalists — will do everything in their power to keep things going the way they are.
There’s too much invested in the ever-upward trend of asset prices.
Vern Gowdie, who is speaking in the lovely Glade Pavilion as I type this, has a new book coming out. I’ve seen an advance copy, and it’s dynamite. In the introduction, he asks:
‘What if the industry’s belief that things can remain as they are is misplaced? What if a new trend is being established? What if markets are in the early years of a long-term downward trend?
‘That’s what they said about the prospect of a nationwide slump in US property values.
‘Even if the brighter sparks in the investment industry happen to secretly entertain doubts about the market’s power of recovery, do you believe they’d share these thoughts with you? Their livelihood depends on projecting an air of optimism and promoting the redemptive powers of the share market.
‘The investment industry willingly became hostage to the fortunes of the share market. It was easy money. The stellar performance of the share market, compared to boring cash and term deposits (with falling rates of return), made managed funds and direct share investing a fairly easy sell. The industry grew fat and complacent on the coat tails of the share market.
‘The time when the investment industry finally admits the market’s best days are behind us is still to come. In the interim you have to apply your own critical judgement on the market’s future fortunes.’
That’s exactly what we’re up to over the next two days.
Returning All-Star Dan Denning follows Vern this morning. Dan launched Port Phillip Publishing here in Australia 11 years ago. And today, he’s the publisher of MoneyWeek magazine in the UK.
Dan’s presentations are always mind-benders. ‘Dystopian’ was all I could get out of him when I asked what it would be about.
Then, before lunch, Satyajit Das hits the stage. Das, author of Traders, Guns & Money: Knowns and Unknowns in the Dazzling World of Derivatives and Extreme Money: The Masters of the Universe and the Cult of Risk is a show-stopper. He was rated by attendees as one of the top speakers at both of our previous two conferences. This morning, he’s going to reveal what he believes could be the single-greatest threat to the Australian economy in 2017.
Then, after lunch, a bona-fide investment megastar takes the podium. We’ve flown in none other than legendary investor and co-founder of the Quantum Fund, Jim Rogers.
On his way up to join us in North Queensland, Jim stopped to talk to the AFR.
He reckons Donald Trump still has a shot of getting over the line on 8 November. And that a shock win from him could make global markets go ballistic, sending investors fleeing into agriculture and US dollars for safety.
Rogers reckons he wouldn’t buy bonds anywhere in the world right now, even with a gun to his head. And that global debt levels are dangerously high, even in Australia.
‘“I suspect [the winner] will be Mr Trump but whoever it will be it’s not going to be good,” Mr Rogers told the AFR. “I hope you are all prepared because there is going to be some very serious problems in the world. Trade wars always lead to bankruptcies.”
‘“I still own a lot of US dollars because there is a lot of turmoil coming, but then I think even the dollar will get overpriced and possibly turn into a bubble.”’
A lot of turmoil coming…
Rogers is not going to get specific on timing.
But his ideas later today on how to prepare for ‘serious market turmoil ahead’ are going to be riveting. So, too, will be his take on Australia’s place in it all.
‘“Every time the resources boom stops for a while the Australian politicians think it’s going to come back any day and so they borrow huge amounts of money.
‘“It’s astounding how you guys keep running up debt here. You have to do something about the debt.”’
One thing YOU can do about the debt is prepare in advance for when it causes the next big blow-up. That’s what we’re up to here in Port Douglas.
Remember, you can view all the presentations over the next two days in the comfort of your La-Z-Boy. To find out how to get the 20% early bird discount on the recordings package, click here.
Contributing Editor, Markets and Money
PS: As part of Port Phillip Publishing’s Great Repression conference taking place this week, we’re giving three lucky people the chance to win a genuine three 1oz Silver Coin. To find out more, click here.