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Jim Willie: The Collapse Is At Our Doorstep

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Jim Willie is not one for holding back and in his latest interview with Silverdoctors sums up where the global financial system currently stands. With each passing week the situation worsens. Willie see a global financial collapse now close at hand and the endgame will be triggered by a small-medium sized bank failure in Europe.

The European collapse will ignite a global Gold rush as the only remaining safe haven ultimately ending  USdollar as worlds reserve currency.

  The Doc began by asking the Golden Jackass what will most likely be the trigger event for a complete systemic collapse:

 I don’t think we’re going to see a default as a trigger event in gold or silver. I didn’t say we won’t see a gold and silver default, I said that it won’t be the trigger. There are just too many deep sources for gold that the central banks have access to. I refer to Basel Switzerland, the Roman catacombs, and the BOE, I think they’re pretty close to the bottom of their gold barrel, but they have big powerful friends in Rome and Basel Switzerland.

The trigger is not even going to come from within the US, because it’s just so controlled- the markets are being controlled from multiple different centers, in particular the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Dept, JPM, Goldman Sachs.

It’s just so corrupt to the core, and we’re seeing a blossoming of the fascist business model and the corruption that’s accepted.

Attention should be drawn to Europe. Look at some of the most recent events that are really quite staggering.

The Italian elections kicked out the GSax preppy Mario Monti. I’m surprised that he’s not being thrown off a palace balcony. It’s directly in response to hikes that Monti imposed on property tax to finance the bankers! The Italian people have a much more effective political system than the US!

Italy actually has elected a comedian! This is like electing John Belushi to form a coalition government! Mario Monti is on the way out. What does that mean?

The defense of their dead banks with liquidity lines and property tax hikes will end in the near future!

In Spain you have new high level financial corruption events that have paralyzed the nation at a time when they’ve already seen a string of big financial firm failures!

This at a time where they have 25% unemployment. I think that the likelihood of violence on the streets is greater in Spain than in any other country.

Spain’s bank insolvency and wretched unemployment is causing tremendous distress, and there will be a breaking point there.

Then in France you have Hollande, the leader of the socialist clowns has raised the highest tax brackets to 90%. The resulting capital flight to Scandinavia is astounding, leaving the nation extremely vulnerable.

Then you have the German economic slowdown which is really capturing some attention, which will remove ability and patience of bank rescues.

Then you have the London banks which are joined by French banks in broad deep exposure to Southern Europe. They’ve set themselves up to have their heads cut off.

Recall that the Draghi solutions like LTRO were recently insulted by debt downgrades, which was unprecedented.

Then you have the USFed, which is the only buyer of USTBonds, and the Euro Central Bank as the only buyer of PIIGS Govt Bonds.

Here is a note as to the stress in the system: the European banking system received $1.2 trillion in Dollar Swap funds from the NY Fed in January alone to prop up the ECB banking system.

European banks are collectively much larger than the US banks, but are in suspended animation while the US banks are being supported by narcotics money laundering.

A big European bust is coming. When the European bust events occur, the mad scramble for safety will be on, and they’re not going to be looking for Switzerland any longer because of their Euro peg. A massive rise in the European gold price is coming and it will be staggering, shocking and not reversible. It will ignite a global Gold rush, a massive short covering rally, and powerful 30% to 50% rise in the gold price will come in response to the European collapse.

Following that will come the arrival of the Gold Trade Finance platforms. Gold settlement for trade across the world- primarily though coming out of the East.

In other words, trade involving two parties not involving the US, one of them being an Eastern nation, and they will settle not in dollars anymore, they will settle in gold, and they will have some help from their friends in Turkey.

We’re going to see an end to the USDollar reserve status following these events, and the funeral will have a speech given by the Saudis to bring an end to the Petro-Dollar itself.

You have to look to Europe and not to the US, the US is a joke in regards to crisis, management, propaganda, the ESF, narcotics money laundering, sponsored fraud, it’s just unbelievable what’s going on in the US, it’s not going to be the trigger, the trigger will be Europe.

We have 15 to 20 potential sites to force the breakdown. It’s not just one or two. Every couple months there are a few more potential areas to cause the breakdown. That’s very, very dangerous, and new. We didn’t see that 3-5 years ago. Back in 07 it was really just sub-prime. We have about 12 different areas now which are just as dangerous as sub-prime, and both of them are in Europe.

 

With QE4 and the recent return of NINJA loans as the Fed attempts to re-inflate the housing bubble, The Doc asked Willie whether the Fed would be able to kick the can down the road one more time with one last bubble:

They have 15-20 fingers and toes, but there are just too many different areas that they need to plug.
This real estate bubble is a joke.  There’s no new bubble coming or even on the horizon.  What we’ve got is the US government has sponsored a whole new round of sub-prime mortgages.  Expect instead of the big banks underwriting them, it’s the Federal government.  We have not seen a rebound in demand for housing, even though the 30 year mortgage rate is under 4% and has been for quite a few months.

What’s not shown in the press is that there’s still 10 million homes that are sitting on the bank balance sheets.  They’re called REO’s, and they’re selling their REO’s or short sales, which ARE NOT INCLUDED IN THE CASE SHILLER INDEX! 

It’s a parallel of the discouraged workers no longer included in unemployment!  They’re bringing labor market calculations to the housing market.  They’re not going to revive the housing bubble for a simple reason- there’s not widespread finance available, it’s exclusively coming out of the FHA.  The other reason is that people have a great distrust for buying homes after they saw so many people foreclosed on.  Another reason is that the people don’t have brisk income.
The factors are not there, it’s kind of a lunatic claim to state that the housing market is going to be re-bubbalized.  Not even close, it’s stuck in a depression!

 

 

The Doc asked Jim whether we face a lost two decades like the Japanese, or what type of collapse we face in the US:

 

I said this back when Lehman Brothers fell in the autumn of 2008.  The US is on a path that cannot escape systemic failure and total dependence on the printing press to cover its debt and for a debt default of the US government debt, which will come in the form of a global conference to organize and co-ordinate the debt write down.  There will be US military outside the room to make sure everyone complies.

If the US goes ahead with sequester cuts, they’re talking about $4 trillion over 10 years.  I cannot emphasize how small that is.  But let’s go through some of the points why I believe the collapse is at our doorstep:

The collapse is happening now- it’s no longer ultra-slow motion like 2 years ago.   It’s a new event every few days or weeks.  The pace is quickening.   

The extreme nature of current events is alarming.  Just in the last few months:

The US Fed announces every month their extension of 0% forever (denigrating their own exit Strategy talk).

 $1.2 trillion was doled out by the USFed to European banks in January alone!

We have the Germans demanding repatriation of their official gold account (Allocated Accounts).

We have the Italians electing a comedian like John Belushi to halt the property tax hikes that bail out banks.  This is an insult to their entire political system which experienced that Mario Monti appointment without an election.

We have the London banks recently sponsoring a Chinese Yuan Swap Facility, cow-towing to Asia.  This is unprecedented!  New York will not do such a thing, but London did, which means that London and NY might be at odds!

We have an attack announced on Mali in North Africa to wrest gold & uranium timed when the  Germans asked for repayment of their gold reserves.  The quantities really fit.  There was a suspicious comment by the French and British saying it will be repaid in 7 years.  300 tons over 7 years is approximately what Mali produces in gold that will cover almost exactly the German repayment.  That was organized by France and the US. 

We have the shutdown of the gigantic Mongolian copper & gold mine by Rio Tinto which is an example of resource nationalism. 

We have raids larger and bolder of the GLD inventory that prevents a COMEX default and will produce a bigger price discount vs. the spot for GLD shares.  I think it will go down towards a 20% discount, which will cause alot of problems. 

We have the USFed preparing for QE5 (or rather QE187, as in QE to Infinity). 

We have events like the major central banks losing credibility while engaging in open currency war.  The franchise system of central banks is being questioned.  They’re in battle with each other. 

We have the US facing a fiscal cliff, which forces a quantum leap in job cuts (recession alert).

We have the Japanese ratcheting up the competitive currency devaluations (only USTBond buyer).

We have the Swiss managing their Euro-Franc peg, but suffering losses in Japanese & British bonds.

We have the Russians hosting a G-20 Meeting to coordinate the alternative to US$-based trade.
THEY ARE NOT GOING TO CONTINUE WITH DOLLAR BASED TRADE SETTLEMENTS!  NOT GOING TO HAPPEN!!

We have the emergence of Turkey and soon India as gold trade finance intermediaries.  They’re going to supply 1 of 2 parties engaged in trade with gold so they can make the settlement of the trade. 

We have the Iranian sanctions coming to a conclusion in US acquiescence.  The US is surrendering to the Iranians! 
All these events have occurred just since the new year began less than two months ago!  The pace of extreme events is quickening!

Extreme events have become the norm, putting tremendous additional stress on the system which the boys are trying to manage.  They don’t have enough people, enough resources, enough channels, and they don’t have enough brains to do it.

The managed system cannot succeed, it’s too complex.  They are attempting to work towards a system of total system management, and it’s just not going to work.

A series of climax events is coming very soon.  The changes will be rapid and breath-taking. 

Vast wealth has been moving East the past 3-4 years, and with it great power. 
Look for some seemingly minor bank failure to cause a ripple effect of deeper damage. 
It’s going to involve larger banks tied with commitments such as counter-party contracts or intermediary supply functions, and things are just going to start wrecking. 

I think vast wealth is going to be lost in the US and the West, except by gold and silver owners. 
Owning gold and silver will become harder to do because the rules are becoming stricter.
Those who have set themselves up in the last few years are going to be the big, big winners, and the ones who are bold enough and brave enough to do it now are going to be glad for their actions. 

I have a family member who refused my advice three years ago, and now that family member is facing the conversion of her very large privately managed IRA pension fund into these new special Treasury bonds.  That’s going to cause a real firestorm by the public, and they’re going to wish that they had converted their IRA’s into a gold account.

Source: SilverDoctors

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US and Europe’s Future

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If Japan can’t get out of it at a time when the rest of the world was booming, what hope is there for the US and Europe.

US Debt/GDP  100%.

France Debt/GDP 146%

Spain Debt/GDP 134%

Germanys Debt/GDP 140%

…..and the UK is off the chart when you look at all its debts.

Lets be realistic and finish with the normalcy bias.

 

Japan’s Debt/GDP

Marc Faber Sees 1987 Style Crash Ahead

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Marc Faber gave an excellent interview on Bloomberg regarding Europe, US, QE3, stock markets and state of global financial economy. Source of article is from ZeroHedge, but video of interview can be see on Bloomberg.

Faber reflects on the US (slowing of revenue growth and the real linkages to European stress) noting that unless we get a huge QE3, there will be “a crash, like in 1987 noting he believes we have seen the highs for the year; on the likelihood of QE3 (agreeing with us that the Fed won’t act unless asset markets plunge first); on Greece’s exit of the Euro and whether policy-makers can manage the exit properly “bureaucrats in Brussels and the media are brainwashing everybody that if Greece exited the euro, it would be a disaster. My view is the best would be to dissolve the whole euro zone“; on the difference between investment markets and economic reality (thanks to financial repression); and on the global race-to-debase “I do not have a high opinion of the U.S. government, but the bureaucrats in Brussels make the government in the U.S. look like an organization consisting of geniuses. The bureaucrats in Brussels are completely useless functionaries“.

On whether the Fed will issue QE3:

I think that QE3 will come, but it depends on asset markets. If the S&P dropped  here another 100-150 points, I think that QE3 will occur.  But if the S&P bounces back and we are above 1400, I think the Fed will essentially be waiting to see how the economy develops. The economy in the U.S. consists of different economies, some of it is very strong. I was in southern California and there the economy is doing fine. In other places, it is not doing fine. It is not universally bad. Compared to other countries, it is actually doing relatively well.”

On whether Greece will exit the euro:

 “There is a very good chance they will exit the euro and it would have been desirable if the euro countries had kicked out Greece three years ago. It would have saved a lot of agony. As a result of the bailout, the problem has become bigger and bigger and bigger”.

On whether policymakers can manage the exit properly:

“I think it would be much better for Greece and the entire euro area if Greece were kicked out. Spain kicked out. Italy out and even France should be out. At the end you just have Germany with the euro. The other countries can have their own currencies and still trade and use the euro as an international currency.”

 “The bureaucrats in Brussels and the media are brainwashing everybody that if Greece exited the euro, it would be a disaster. My view is the best would be to dissolve the whole euro zone and that the countries would go back to their own currencies and still use the euro as an international currency the way you travel through Latin America and with a dollar you can pay anywhere you with. In my view, that would be the best. These countries that have financial difficulties, you will have to write off their debts and make it difficult for them to access the capital market in the future. Just to keep bailing them out will increase the problem. It will not solve the problem.”

On how economic catastrophe can be avoided if the euro is dissolved:

“Explain to me why there would be an economic catastrophe. Many countries have pegged currencies have given up the peg to another currency and it was not a catastrophe. The public has been brainwashed that the breakup of the euro would be a complete disaster when in fact, it may be the solution.

On whether there will be a race to the bottom among various countries to devalue their own currencies if the euro is dissolved:

 “I do not have a high opinion of the U.S. government, but the bureaucrats in Brussels make the government in the U.S. look like an organization consisting of geniuses. The bureaucrats in Brussels are completely useless functionaries and they want to maintain their power. They always talk about austerity being bad but if you look at the government expenditures of the EU, in 2000, it was 44% of GDP. Since then, it has grown by 76% under the influence of the Keynesian clowns and now it is 49% of GDP. That is the problem of Europe — too much government spending and lack of fiscal discipline.”

On whether it’s a mistake to short the euro:

“I want to make this very clear — the investment markets may move in different directions than the economic reality because if you print money. That’s why in the Bloomberg poll, Mr. Bernanke is viewed so favorably because fund managers and analysts and strategists, they are only interested in having stocks up so their earnings increase and their bonus pool increases. But in reality, the economy can go downhill and stocks can go up just because of money printing and in Europe, the ECB has proven now that they are very good money printers.”

On where to invest in Europe:

“Actually, usually when socialists come in or there is a crisis such as we have in Greece, it occurs usually near market lows. If someone really wanted to take speculative positions, he should look at quality non- financial stocks in countries like Spain, Italy, France, and Greece. I think rebound is coming. The market on a short-term basis is oversold. But if you look at the market action — first of all, we made a low on the S&P last October at 1074. We went to 1422. The market is down from 1422 to less than 1360. The whole world is screaming we’re in a bear market. This is a minor correction. I think it may become a more serious correction as the technical picture of the market has deteriorated very badly and as the S&P made a new high this year on April 2nd, all the European markets are lower than they were a year ago.”

Faber on whether he still thinks that profit margins will shrink and record profits seen will be no more for U.S. corporations:

 “Yes, if you look at the statements by corporations, it is very clear. Earlier on, you had a commentator who said the exports to Europe from the U.S. are irrelevant. I agree with that. What is relevant are the businesses of American corporations in Europe and the earnings they derive from these businesses. That is definitely slowing down. The revenue growth is slowing down and, in my view, you will have more and more corporations that report earnings that are actually good but they do not exceed expectations…The bottom line is I think the market will have difficulty moving up strongly on less we have a massive QE3 and if it moves here and makes the high above 1422, the second half of the year could witness a crash.”

“A crash, like in 1987…because the market would become technically very weak. I would expect the market making a new high. If it happens, it would be a new high with very few stocks pushing up and the majority of stocks have already rolled over. The earnings outlook is not particularly good because most economies in the world are slowing down. People focus on Greece but Greece is completely irrelevant. What is relevant are two countries — China and India — 2.5 billion people combined. They are a huge market for goods and these economies are slowing down massively at the present time”

Video source: Bloomberg

Leeb – Gold Standard For Europe

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King World News interview with  Stephen Leeb, Chairman & Chief Investment Officer of Leeb Capital Management regarding the Gold Standard that will as he sees it eventually come. His comments come after a bad sell off this week following the fallout from the Greek and French elections.

Many independent analysts including James Rickard, Max Keiser, Peter Schiff and even Ron Paul have called for a Gold standard, but only time will tell if its inevitable as some claim. Certainly the arguments for are quite compelling.

“Gold is reacting to what’s going on in Europe.  It’s the last resort of liquidity for a lot of people.  It’s been the best performing major asset over the last 12 years.  You have a lot of chaos in Europe an no one knows what’s happening, so there has been a lot of reflex selling of gold.”

“Gold has been a bit stronger than I thought it would be considering the danger of a euro breakup is accelerating.  I don’t think there’s any chance the euro holds together under its current form.  Unemployment among the young in Greece is about 50%.  That can’t stand, it just can’t.

 These politicians can’t do this forever.  People are not going to tolerate starvation.  Sooner or later the politicians are going to have to respond.  This means less austerity and more growth, and the end of German hegemony in Europe.

This looks similar to the end of World War I.  Once the euro goes, it will be very much like the end of the war…. 

“You are going to have a lot of currency devaluation.  You are also going to see massive inflation.  Everybody knows what that means for gold.

So you are in the last hours of turbulence for the gold market (to the downside).  Once this correction ends, you are going to have a barnburner to the upside.  Gold will just vault.  I don’t think investors will even remember these frustrating days.  I had been warning we could see this drop in gold because of the problems in Europe, but investors should take advantage of it.

The key to all this appears to be China. Leeb backs up James Rickards opinion that China will move towards a gold back yuan.

Look at what China is doing.  China is buying gold hand over fist right now.  They are going to move the yuan forward as the world’s reserve currency and it’s going to be partially backed by gold.  The world can also expect to see a gold standard imposed on Europe in the next 12 to 18 months. 

As for Gold stocks, it depends on what they have left in the ground.

The junior gold stocks, the ones with honest to goodness reserves which have not been developed, they will see one of the greatest, if not the greatest bull market of all-time. 

But many of the big stocks have become like dinosaurs.  Stocks like Newmont and Barrick don’t have enough gold in the ground.  So what’s bad for Newmont and Barrick, is incredibly good for gold.  We are sitting on the cusp of what may be the greatest bull market we’ve ever seen in our lifetimes.”

Soon we will have QE3 which will lead to inflation.

Leeb also added:  “Prospects for QE3 are rising.  I think the stock market will make some sort of eventual top and just be range bound.  This is what happens when you have inflation taking hold.  We saw this in the 70s when stocks went nowhere for that entire decade, but gold and silver had massive gains. 

The only place to be is going to be hard assets and commodities.  Incidentally, both Glencore and Mitsubishi, two of the largest commodity companies in the world, have come out in the last day or so and stated that “commodity markets are tight.”  Once this is liquidation is over, commodities will go crazy.”

So why hasn’t Europe crashed already?

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On the theeconomiccollapseblog website is an article on 27 statistics about the European Economic crisis that are too crazy to believe but at the end is the part I find most interesting. It poses the question as to why Europe hasn’t crashed yet. For 3 or 4 years Europe has dodged the bullet and the crisis has gotten deeper but eventually the piper has to be paid. Below the question is answered.


So why hasn’t Europe crashed already?

Well, the powers that be are pulling out all their tricks.

For example, the European Central Bank decided to start loaning gigantic mountains of money to European banks.  That accomplished two things….

1) It kept those European banks from collapsing.

2) European banks used that money to buy up sovereign bonds and that kept interest rates down.

Unfortunately, all of this game playing has also put the European Central Bank in a very vulnerable position.

The balance sheet of the European Central Bank has expanded by more than 1 trillion dollars over the past nine months.  The balance sheet of the European Central Bank is now larger than the entire GDP of Germany and the ECB is now leveraged 36 to 1.

So just how far can you stretch the rubberband before it snaps?

Perhaps we are about to find out.

The European financial system is leveraged like crazy right now.  Even banking systems in countries that you think of as “stable” are leveraged to extremes.

For example, major German banks are leveraged 32 to 1, and those banks are holding a massive amount of European sovereign debt.

When Lehman Brothers finally collapsed, it was only leveraged 30 to 1.

You can’t solve a debt crisis with more debt.  But the European Central Bank has been able to use more debt to kick the can down the road a few more months.

At some point the sovereign debt bubble is going to burst.

All financial bubbles eventually burst.

What goes up must come down.

Right now, the major industrialized nations of the world are approximately 55 trillion dollars in debt.

It has been a fun ride, but this fraudulent pyramid of risk, debt and leverage is going to come crashing down at some point.

It is only a matter of time.

Already, there are a whole bunch of signs that some very serious economic trouble is on the horizon.

Hopefully we still have a few more months until it hits.

But in this day and age nothing is guaranteed.

What does seem abundantly clear is that the current global financial system is inevitably going to fail.

When it does, what “solutions” will our leaders try to impose upon us?

That is something to think about.

Debt Supercycle

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Chris Martenson submitted an excellent article of an interview with John Mauldin on ZeroHedge regarding the “Debt Supercycle” which was a concept originally introduced in the 1930s by Irving Fisher. In a nutshell it means

  that when there is a buildup of too much debt within an economy, there reaches a point where there simply is no other available solution but to let it rewind.

According the Martenson the US has now reached that point where the debt supercycle has ended and needs to be paid off.

You can’t look to monetary policy for help (which will try to stimulate businesses to get more debt) because debt is the problem. If you are drunk and you need to cure yourself; another fifth of the whiskey is not the answer. So when debt becomes the problem, when it gets to be too much, more debt is not the issue. You’ve just simply got to work it off. There’s no easy way out of it. And, it takes years to work through it. It takes a long time, generally — 60 to 70 years, in the US’s case — for these debt cycles to build up. It’s when you can no longer adequately service your debt and the market loses confidence in your ability to service the debt at a price that it finds adequate.

Normally to deal with debt you can try to grow your way out, but

The problem is, when you’re at the end of the debt supercycle, when you’re running up against your ability to borrow money, that liquidity no longer works.

 ……
So you can either repudiate the debt, you can default on it, you can monetize it, you can try to grow your way out of it; but you’re going have to deal with it. And there’s no easy way, when you’re at the end of the debt supercycle, when debt has become too much. Printing money doesn’t work.
So Europe is already has gone too far according to Mauldin, Japan is nearly there and will have disastrous consequences when it finally falls and the US will suffer 5-6 years of very low growth. Bottom line is if debt is not caught early in the cycle, then there is no easy solution but to let it unwind. 

As Fisher pointed out, the time to solve the debt bubble is before it becomes a bubble. He was wanting separation of commercial banks and lending. He wanted a much less fractional-reserve-based banking because he wanted the debt to keep from building up past levels that we saw in the 1920’s. He saw that as something that was so bad that it created the Depression.

Unfortunately every time the business cycle was about to break down in the US, printing presses kicked in and along with low-interest rates there was always somebody there to buy the debt. Finally we are reaching that point where money printing no longer works, hence debt supercycle is reached.

Europe is Warmup, US is Main Event.

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Peter Schiff CEO of Euro Pacific Capital, gave an interview on RT’s Capital Account. Below is the video clip but the main points are as follows:

  • We are in intensive care and zero interest rates prevent the cure.
  • We need higher interest rates, more savings, lower property prices, less government spending and to balance the books.
  • Europe is the warmup and America is the main event.
  • We are where the real sovereign debt crises is going to be and it will be enormous.
  • It was going to happen because of mistakes government made in the past, but it will be worse because of mistakes made in the present.
  • We haven’t had a free market for a long time and is getting less and less free.
  • The more government gets involved in the economy, the more they screw it up.
  • We are going to have an inflationary depression worse than the 1930s. Everything the government is likely to do will exacerbate it.
  • The more government stimulate, the worse it gets.
  • We are a lot sicker than we were in the 1930s. We know what the cure is but we can’t get the politicians to allow the economy to swallow it.
  • We are in a climate where real tyranny can flourish. Look at what happened in Weimar Republic, Germany. After hyper-inflation we got the Nazis.
  • We are going to have civil unrest and rioting.
  • Ultimately we will have price controls even though government currently are denying we have inflation, because prices will be so high.
  • Government may start to silence the voices of people. They can already classify anyone they want as a terrorist.
  • Young people are getting the message now. So there is hope.

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