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The GLD Trust Is Being Drained / By David Kranzler / October 21, 2014

It’s a matter of “trust.” How much do you trust GLD’s vault custodian, HSBC? Has HSBC given us any reason to place trust in both its financial reporting and the way it operates?  HSBC has been already been nailed for rigging LIBOR and the LBMA gold fix.

I wonder how many of those bars shown in the picture do not belong in the GLD segregated area but were moved there to give the illusion that the GLD account was filled with gold bars?

Another 9 tonnes of gold was removed from the GLD trust yesterday. This takes the “reported” amount down to 751 tonnes. The last time the reported amount of gold in the trust was at this level was November 18, 2008. The price of gold was $738.

Individual share selling of “odd lots” of GLD – where and “odd lot” is defined at as anything less than the 100,000 shares required to redeem gold from the Trust – does not trigger the removal of gold from GLD.  Poor investor sentiment does not trigger the removal.  The only way gold is removed is if one of the Approved Participant bullion banks collects 100,000 share baskets and turns them in exchange for the delivery of gold bars.   Once that gold is removed, it disappears.


Rate Hikes & Gold / BY Stewart Thomson / October 21, 2014

While all “systems are go” for the precious metals sector, or at least appear that way, things are substantially more questionable for the world’s stock, bond, and real estate markets.

India’s top central banker, Raghuram Rajan, is highly educated, in both engineering and economics.  He’s one of the smartest practical economists in the world, and the only central banker to have predicted the 2008 super-crisis.

Ominously, he’s the only central banker now, issuing dire warnings about a new super-crisis, one that could become a 1930s-style depression.  My suggestion to the Western gold community is to take this man seriously.  Here’s why:

The Fed often uses a rough eight year business cycle in its calculations.  The last two cycles peaked in the year 2000 and 2007.  The current cycle has been anemic, and it is likely to peak in 2015, using that eight year gauge as a rule of thumb.

If Western gold community investors did not buy the US stock market into the 2002 and 2009 lows (I did), they should not be “chasing price” now, as this business cycle peaks.  Bank economists keep saying this recovery cycle can continue far beyond eight years, but that’s what they said in 1999 and 2007, right before the last two crashes.

Wealth in the stock market that is “here to stay”, is generated by buying business cycle troughs, not peaks.   While most bank economists and gold community analysts predicted a Fed taper would crush the price of gold, I suggested it would cause gold to rally, and turn the Dow into a wet noodle, and that’s exactly what has transpired.

Here’s what I see next:  I think bank economists and gold community analysts are seriously underestimating the Fed’s concerns about inflation, and risk-on market froth.  For 2015, I’m predicting substantial increases in interest rates, as the Fed works to support higher wages for low and middle income Americans.

Janet Yellen has categorically stated that she has serious concerns about the wage differential between the rich and the rest of America.  Higher wages are inflationary.  Higher wages are almost certainly coming in 2015, and that means the Fed must raise interest rates decisively, to halt the inflation generated by those higher wages.


Dummies Guide To President Obama’s Early Warning System / by Tyler Durden on 10/21/2014 10:43

Presented with no comment…


According To Goldman, This Is Why China’s GDP Was Better Than Expected (Spoiler Alert: Weather) / by Tyler Durden / 10/21/2014 10:26

It is now beyond ridiculous.

Recall yesterday we reported that according to Japan’s Economy Minister, Akira Amari, who over the weekend went full economic retard – rather than face reality that Abenomics currency devaluation printfest has crushed the consumer beyond all expectations, he blamed the weather for economic weakness: “including the effects of large typhoons and heavy rains in July and August, Japan’s 3Q economic situation is probably not a strong recovery.”

Of course, it is not his fault: he is merely piggybacking on what the US did in early 2014 when it blamed the collapse in China’s credit expansion which reverberated across the globe, crushing US GDP on “snow in the winter.”

And since everyone had been wrong about Q1 GDP (not to mention Treasury yields) and was thus willing to look the other way and “accept” a grossly ridiculous explanation (because only idiots would believe that $100 billion in potential GDP was wiped out as a result of several winter storms) over fears that they too be exposed as grossly incompetent pattern-chasing penguins, blaming the weather stuck as the excuse for everything that happened since January which was somewhat unexpected, and for which the true explanation, namely that there is no global recovery, was just too unpalatable.


Oil Deflation, the Saudi’s Muslim Frankenstein, and the Colder War / Marin Katusa / Oct 21, 2014

Deflation [dih-fley-shuhn]

  1. Economics. a fall in the general price level or a contraction of credit and available money (opposed to inflation). Source:

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) published a very compelling chart last week; it shows that the net energy imports of the US as a share of consumption are at their lowest level in 29 years.

How can this be?

The reason is shale oil. The success of the shale oil sector—specifically horizontal drilling and fracking shale—has caused a significant increase in domestic US production. This is nothing new, and certainly isn’t a surprise to our subscribers.

But what is interesting was Saudi Arabia’s reaction to the increase in domestic US production. The United States had been Saudi Arabia’s largest oil customer… until the US Fed’s quantitative easing policy created cheap money, which fueled the shale revolution in the US.

Today, China is Saudi Arabia’s new best friend. The Saudis cut the spot price of oil to China and caused a significant whiplash in oil prices, which sent international oil markets from US$95 a barrel to below USD$85 a barrel.

According to the EIA, China is expected to surpass the US as the world’s largest oil importer by the end of 2014.


The Fed “IS” the Problem! / Bill Holter / October 21st, 2014

As I wrote yesterday, markets have become schizophrenic and volatility has exploded.  It is obvious the uncertainty regarding “QE” (monetization) is at the heart of this renewed volatility.  I do want to mention and remind you of past crashes and vicious bear markets, they ALL have seen big volatility (in both directions) prior to the collapse.  1929, 1987, 2000, 2008 …they all experienced big swings in the market prior to the big declines, this is what I believe we are experiencing now.

Before getting to my topic “the Fed IS the problem,” I want to remind you how we have gotten here.  Back in 2008, we had both fiscal and monetary stimulus as the policy response to dysfunctional markets and a shrinking economy.  You might remember Hank Paulson talking about his “bazooka” TARP plan while the Fed was lowering rates furiously and even lending $16 trillion secretly.  They threw the proverbial kitchen sink at the problems.  The problems did not go away nor were they fixed, they were only postponed.  The postponement date now seems to be upon us as the end of another QE nears …or another round must begin.  Can the U.S. Treasury pump more fiscal stimulus without spooking the bond market and exposing insolvency?  Who will buy another “1 off” stimulus plan?  If the answer is “no one” then it will fall solely on the shoulders of the Fed.  Do you see where this goes?

The Fed is literally backed into a corner.  They have to reflate the system yet they themselves are stretched more than any monetary entity in history.  They are levered at nearly 80 to 1.  This means the Fed can only withstand a 1.25% loss on total assets before their capital is wiped out.  I have a question for you, do you really believe the Fed has not ALREADY lost 1.25% on total assets?  Please remember, they “absorbed” the “crappy” assets after the 2008 debacle.  They were buying bonds from banks in order to get the assets off of the books of the banking system …so that the system itself could pretend to still be solvent.  Do you remember when some of these assets were offered for sale and the auctions immediately pulled because the bids were coming in UNDER .20 cents on the dollar?  Do you suppose on their entire book of business there actually is any equity left?


Too Big to Fail = Too Big to Exist / by Martin Armstrong / October 21, 2014

Several banks who are friendly and not the wild trading types, reported to us before that the Federal Reserve officials were visiting them warning that they needed to change their models. Now the Fed is warning banks that they MUST do more to curb excessive risk-taking. They have also been warned about the bogus claims of “rogue” traders who amazingly lose billions and somehow management never knew. That claim is BOGUS, for anyone claiming that means that the bank should be shut down for it is incapable of risk management and should be barred from trading. So the Fed has again informed the banks that they have to now improve employee behavior at their firms or face stiff repercussions, including being broken into smaller pieces.


Is Gold as Dead as Florida Hurricanes? / By Dennis Miller / 21 October 2014

It’s been over 3,280 days since a hurricane hit Florida. As hurricane season comes to a close next month, only Mother Nature knows how long the streak will last.

Like many Floridians, my wife and I stayed home and rode out a hurricane—once! We’d built a home on Perdido Key, a barrier island west of Pensacola. It was engineered to withstand 150-plus mph winds, and it was a beautiful home with a master bedroom spanning the entire third floor, looking out across the Gulf of Mexico.

Hurricane Danny hit the Gulf shortly after we moved in. It was a fast-moving Category I with winds gusting in the 75-80 mph range. Full of confidence and a bit curious, we decided to hunker down and ride it out. At the speed it was traveling, it should have been over in a matter of hours. Then, Danny caught everyone by surprise and stalled in Mobile Bay, pounding us for three days.

The waves on the Gulf were terrifying. We watched the rising tide bang boats against the rocks and sink others. Our front door had a double deadbolt with a keyhole on each side. Water shot through three feet into the room for 24 hours straight. Newly planted palm trees strained against support wires and toppled onto their sides.

We tried to get some sleep in our bedroom, but we could feel the house move with each gust of wind. We watched bits and pieces of our neighbor’s tile roof fly off and smash a few feet from our house. We were trapped and terrified for three days.

The no-hurricane record has been all over the Florida news, highlighting concern that people are becoming complacent. They don’t understand what adequate preparation entails. The storm itself can be horrific, but the aftermath can be equally disastrous, leaving people without food, water, power, and access to basic services for several days. Homes that survive a storm often have to be gutted because of mold and mildew. Without power, sewage immediately becomes a problem.

Plus, if your flood, wind, and homeowners insurance is not up to date, say hello to serious financial hardship. Many Floridians discovered too late that their policy limits had not increased with inflation and wouldn’t cover the cost of rebuilding.


Existing Home Sales Jump To Highest Since Sept 2013. Midwest Tumbles 5.3% / by Tyler Durden / 10/21/2014 10:12

Existing Home Sales bounced back from the worst miss in 2014 in August to print 5.17mm SAAR – thehighest since September 2013. Of course the surge is driven by Condos/Co-Ops (up 5.2%) rather than single-family homes (up 2.0%) and median home prices are the highest ever for a September at $209,700. It was not all ponies and unicorns though as Midwest saw sales plunge 5.6%. NAR’s Larry Yun has some crucial insight for why home sales are rising…”Economic instability overseas is leading to volatility in the stock market and is causing investors to seek safer bets [in housing],” so we assume he is disappointe dby the 1000s of Dow points we have surged off last week’s lows?

Lawrence Yun , NAR chief economist, says the improved demand for buying seen since the spring has carried into the fall. “Low interest rates and price gains holding steady led to September’s healthy increase, even with investor activity remaining on par with last month’s marked decline,” he said.

“Traditional buyers are entering a less competitive market with fewer investors searching for available homes, but may also face a slight decline in choices due to the fact that inventory generally falls heading into the winter.”



corbettreportPublished on Oct 21, 2014

Goodbye War On Drugs, Hello Libertarian Utopia. Dominic Frisby’s Bitcoin: The Future of Money? / by John RubinoOctober 21, 2014

Now that bitcoin has subsided from speculative bubble to functioning currency (see the price chart below), it’s safe for non-speculators to explore the whole “cryptocurrency” thing. So…is bitcoin or one of its growing list of competitors a useful addition to the average person’s array of bank accounts and credit cards — or is it a replacement for most of those things? And how does one make this transition?

With his usual excellent timing, London-based financial writer/actor/stand-up comic Dominic Frisby has just released Bitcoin: The Future of Money? in which he explains all this in terms most readers will have no trouble following. As you’d expect from someone who uses words to amuse as well as educate, Frisby’s prose is informal and fluid and occasionally very funny, with lots of first-person anecdotes.

The message, however, is fairly serious: Bitcon is, just maybe, a new and better form of money, an emerging homo sapiens to the dollar’s Neanderthal. As such it’s potentially transformational.

So let’s start with a little background: Bitcoins are created (or mined) when computers solve certain kinds of mathematical puzzles. The number of bitcoins outstanding is designed to grow at a predetermined rate for a predetermined period, making its supply both limited and predictable (in contrast to fiat currencies that multiply at the whim of central bankers and politicians). And the currency can be transferred online quickly and cheaply, bypassing the traditional banking/credit card nexus.

Frisby spends the first half of his book telling the story of how bitcoin came to be, featuring the author’s attempts to track down the currency’s enigmatic creator, Satoshi Nakamoto (generally believed to be either an individual super-genius polymath or some sort of libertarian programmer collective). Frisby concludes that it’s the former and claims to have found him. You’ll have to read the book for that revelation.


Wildest day in four years on bond markets last Wednesday and a ‘flash crash’ so what next? / 21 October 2014

Bond markets are supposed to be safe havens as equities sell-off but not so last week. On Wednesday there was a ‘flash crash’ in yields with 10-year treasury yields falling 34bps to 1.84 per cent, before rallying to 2.15 per cent in the same session.

Then on Thursday core bond yields plunged and peripheral European yields spiked before reversing course. This is as wild as it gets in bonds. Markets are unhinged. Falling oil prices are leading to a liquidation of risk assets across the board and another major concern is the end of QE3 money printing later this month.

Structural change

What seems to be happening is something structural. The risk premium traditionally attached to bond markets where there is a possibility of default is rising – like Greece – and investors are moving into the ultra safe core bonds of Germany and the US. Credit costs are going up in many emerging markets and that enhances the risk of default somewhere.


Great Graphic: Where is the Secular Stagnation? / by Marc Chandler / October 20, 2014

This Great Graphic shows the GDP of several major economies measured in US dollars.    It was posted in the Wilson Quarterly, and draws from World Bank data.  The US economy is on a parallel but somewhat lower path than it was on through the 90s and noughts.  The US economy is creating more goods and services than ever.

China’s nominal growth has accelerated over the past decade. It reflects not just China’s real growth, but incorporates inflation, which has run consistently higher in China than the other countries here, and the yuan’s appreciation.  The appreciation of the yuan coincides with the acceleration of China’s nominal growth in US dollar terms starting in 2005. Although it is difficult to tell it from the chart, the economy has grown 24-fold since 1989.    In the same time, the US economy has grown three-fold.

USDA Harvest Progress Reports / Dan Norcini / October 20, 2014

Here are the latest numbers on the harvest from USDA.

Corn –

93% of the crop is mature compared to 87% last week and 93% last year at this time. The five year average is 94%.

31% of the crop is in the bin compared to 24% last week and 38% last year at this time. The five-year average is 53%.

Soybeans –

95% of the crop is dropping leaves compared to 91% last week and 93% last year at this time. The five-year average is 97%.

53% of the harvest is done compared to 40% last week and 61% last year at this time. The five-year average is 66%.

The weather looks very conducive to rapid harvest progress this week so expect to see some pretty strong progress by the time next Monday rolls around and we get more of these numbers from the USDA. As of now, skies should be clear with lots of sunshine through Sunday at least.

There is some fund buying in these grains for some reason that I cannot seem to put a finger on. Might be some more of that supposed rotation out of stocks and into what is viewed as “cheap” ags but that still seems a rather irrational reason for professional funds to throw money into a market. That big down day we had in the Dollar last week threw the macro trades into some convulsions and I suspect we are still encountering some residual fallout from that move in the currencies for mere technical reasons.

There is apparently a contingent of large speculators who seem to enjoy buying the grains nearly ever evening in the Asian session as they go stop hunting after shorts in the market. Whomever it is that has been doing this, has been at it for some time now. We are seeing more of it this evening as I type these comments.

I should note that guys like me who trade the livestock markets heavily have been complaining to the CME for several years about the antics occurring in that sector during the thinly traded Asian hours. After getting an earful from the industry participants as well, many who got sick and tired of watching their hedges get blown all to kingdom come for no apparent reason other than specs moving the markets around because they can do so, CME finally has moved to end the Asian trading of livestock. As of next week, FREEDOM is the new word for we long-suffering livestock traders.


Daily Pfennig: China’s 3rd QTR GDP Shrinks / Chuck Butler / October 21, 2014

In This Issue.

*  Currencies except the euro post gains.
*  RBI advisors chooses the wrong words.
*  Russia makes largest one-month Gold purchase for them.
*  Fisher sticks to his guns.

And Now. Today’s A Pfennig For Your Thoughts.

China’s 3rd QTR GDP Shrinks.

Good Day!.. And a Tom Terrific Tuesday to you! I’m feeling much better today, so here I am back in the saddle at the office. The Eagles are playing: My Old ’55 on the IPod, and like the Eagles, I too am riding with Lady Luck. The Happy Song is playing now, and I’ve said this before, but if you’re in a bad mood when that song comes on, you’ll soon change moods! Not that I’m in a bad mood or anything. Just kind of strange this morning.

Well, the BIG NEWS overnight was the Chinese 3rd QTR GDP report that printed at +7.3%, down from the 7.5% in the 2nd QTR. But, and this is a Big BUT so I’ll treat it as such. BUT, the 7.3% 3rd QTR print, was better than the forecasts.. And if there’s something we’ve all learned over the years together, is that sometimes / most times, beating the expectations is the most important thing. And so it was with the Chinese renminbi/ yuan overnight, as it was allowed to appreciate again.

Remember, that China’s target for 2014 GDP is 7.5%…  And the thing I want to point out here is that the Chinese Gov’t has said that the 7.5% figure was a “soft target”. So, any downside miss that’s near 7.5% would be tolerated by the Chinese Gov’t. And I think that with them allowing an appreciation of the renminbi / yuan overnight, that they are saying just that!

So. That’s the Big News overnight. Elsewhere, the currencies and metals seem to have some control over the dollar. The Aussie dollar (A$) has moved back over 88-cents , and kiwi is within spittin’ distance of 80-cents again. These moves higher won’t make the Central Bank Governors of the Reserves Bank of Australia (RBA) and New Zealand (RBNZ), very happy, for it was just two weeks ago, that each respective Central Bank Gov. deep sixed their currencies, in hopes of promoting growth.

The RBA will get to view what a cheaper currency does to their CPI (consumer inflation) numbers today. Recall that in August, Aussie CPI was +2.3%, which is over the 2% target of the RBA, and since then the A$ has been deep sixed. So, this report should be quite interesting, eh?

On a sidebar this morning. The Bloomberg says that the Total Oil CEO, you know the one that called for an end to the petrodollar dominance, died overnight in a freak airplane crash in Moscow. This is the stuff of conspiracy crazies, like me, but I have to leave it at that, for I could type out my whole message and have it nixed, so I won’t go there. But if you’re ever on the Butler Patio.


Who benefits from inflation? / By Manish Thatte / 21 October 2014

A good government and healthy society is one which encourages courage, honesty, values and thrift. Borrowing and living beyond your means is not a sign of a healthy society. It also indicates that something is wrong in the way in which the state is being governed.

What is inflation:

Inflation quite simply is an increase in prices across the board for many goods and services in an economy. This is called price inflation.

Alternately, inflation may also be thought of as the erosion in value of an economy’s currency caused due to money printing by the economy’s central bank. This is called monetary inflation.

Monetary inflation may or may not cause price inflation.

What constitutes inflation?

Suppose we are having an inflation of 10% per annum (as we commonly have in India). What is the cause of this inflation?

A small Part of it originates in the increase in prices across the CPI basket (oil, energy, food), but most of it is due to unbacked expenses by the government (budget deficits) and fresh issue of credit without any real financial asset or income source backing that credit.

Increase in the CPI basket goes to the energy producers, commodity producers and food producers (farmers), which is benign, even desirable.

But most of the increase (inflation) is just coming out of thin air, in the sense, that the government is issuing fresh credit, issuing doles of money and subsidies to sections of society it favours, by way of the unbalanced budget (budget deficit).

This is what is dangerous for the economy and more importantly, morality of the society. The Government needs to balance its budget to reduce this component of inflation and needs to get its priorities right.


How The Federal Reserve Is Purposely Attacking Savers / by Chris Martenson / October 20, 2014, 12:36 PM

There’s something we ‘regular’ citizens wrestle with that the elites never seem to: a sense of moral duty.

For example, following the collapse of the housing bubble, many people struggled with mortgages they could no longer afford to pay, fearing the shame of default. Many believed defaulting was wrong somehow; that it was their moral obligation to pay their mortgages, no matter how dire their personal situation. And of course, the mortgages lenders did their utmost to reinforce this perception.

In a perfect world, we would honor our debts and obligations, every one of us. But the world is an imperfect place ,and moral obligation is something that almost never enters into the decision matrix of our society’s richest. Or the banking industry.

For them, the number one (and two, and three…) rule is that whatever is expedient and makes the most money is the right thing to do.

For the bottom 99%, it’s like playing with a stricter set of rules than your opponent: you’re not allowed to hit below the belt, and they’ve brought a baseball bat into the ring.

Note how this guy had to fight through his middle class conditioning before coming to a sense of peace over his decision to enter into a short sale on his house:

How a short sale taught me rich people’s ethics

Sep 29, 2014

The closest I ever came to acting like a rich person was two years ago when I short-sold my primary residence. I might have been able to keep it but strategic default made life easier. I owed about $400,000 on a house that short-sold for $150K. The bank lost more than a quarter of a million dollars, and I lost at least $80K in down payment and property improvements.

I was taught growing up to “keep my word” and that your handshake “meant something.”Yet businessmen and individual wealthy people make decisions that are far less moral than a short sale. People “incorporate” so they can avoid legal responsibility for individual actions.

It works great. You can stiff creditors, declare bankruptcy, pollute daily and raid pensions to enrich individual executives. If it all goes wrong, like it has so often for Donald Trump, you can keep your mansions and individual fortunes.

I entered the shark-infested waters of high finance with a short sale. It was the worst ethical decision, but the finest, most profitable business moment, of my adult life. It was an informative, even transformative, experience.



Hong Kong Chief: Can’t Have Democracy Or The Poor Will Have A Say / by Tyler Durden / 10/21/2014 09:43

Clearly, Leung Chung-Ying, Hong Kong’s embattled leader, did not get the Jean-Claude Juncker memo that“when things are bad, you have to lie.” As The NY Times reports, Leung – rather stunningly – said overnight that it was unacceptable to allow his successors to be chosen in open elections, in part because doing so would risk giving poorer residents a dominant voice in politics. Instead, rather unsurprisingly, he backed Beijing’s position that all candidates to succeed him as chief executive, the top post in the city, must be screened by a “broadly representative” nominating committee appointed by Beijing, and offered several thinly veiled warnings on Monday that it was risky for the protesters to try the patience of the national authorities.


What NCR just Said about the American Retail Quagmire / by Wolf Richter / 

When NCR announced its preliminary and disappointing third quarter results today, it lowered its guidance for the rest of 2014. Its stock got knocked into a breathtaking 21% plunge. While at it, NCR revealed to just what extent brick-and-mortar retailers were sinking into a quagmire.

The maker of, among other things, point-of-sale devices for the retail industry should know: It is, as it says, “the global leader in consumer transaction technologies.”

It blamed “global macroeconomic conditions” such as “foreign currency headwinds.” The dollar had surged recently to regain some of the value it had lost before – very unwelcome news for Corporate America. And NCR blamed particularly the “challenging retail market” for its debacle. CEO Bill Nuti explained it this way:

Market conditions within the retail industry worsened in the third quarter, as evidenced by weak same store sales comparisons and financial results. This resulted in our retail customers spending more cautiously than anticipated and further delaying solution rollouts. Contributing further are ongoing data security concerns, which were heightened in the third quarter. This is causing retailers to shift IT priorities, resources, and capital spending. Additionally, ongoing retail consolidation continues to be a factor impacting our performance.

So, while NCR will “continue to be faced with challenging and uncertain market dynamics,” it remains, obviously, “confident in the actions we are taking to address these challenges, including strengthening our Retail Solutions team and talent….”


California on the Brink: 14 Rural Communities are Now Facing Total Water Depletion / Joshua Krause / October 20th, 2014

Nestled in the mountains of California, is the infamous tourist destination of Bodie. Once a thriving gold mining town, it is now an empty shell of its former self. As soon as the gold depleted in the early 20th century, the town faced decades of decline that it would never recover from.

By the early 1960′s, the last handful of residents left the town. They leaving behind an eerie scene, filled with crumbling homes and businesses amidst a desolate landscape. However, gold isn’t essential to living. If the Western drought continues on its current course, then we have dozens of ghost towns to look forward to in the near future.

So far the drought in California has been relentless. Where I live in the Bay Area, we’ve had our first rain of the year today, if you could call it that. More like a fine mist. Normally we’ve gotten at least one rainy day by this time of year, but it’s looking like this winter is going to be just as bad as last year.

The people living in the rural parts of the central valley are getting hit the hardest. A total of 14 communities throughout the state are on the edge of water depletion. For now they’ve been able to keep the situation under control by allocating water from neighboring communities, but how much longer can they continue to do so?

Last week it was reported that certain regions of California have about 2 months before they run out of water. If we don’t get rain soon, it’s possible that some people may have to leave their homes. Furthermore, the timing of this rain is going to be crucial.