Gold prices are lower in early U.S. trading Tuesday as a higher U.S. dollar index and lower crude oil prices combined with almost 1 billion in gold being dumped early this morning forced precious metals down. Gold last reported a.m. is $1165.50 and silver is $15.63.
According to NORAD, four long range Russian bombers were intercepted by U.S. fighter planes as the bombers flew near Alaska and the west coast of California.
The first incident occurred at approximately 10:30 a.m. EDT on July 4, when Alaskan-based NORAD F-22 fighters intercepted and visually identified two Russian TU-95 “Bear” long-range bomber aircraft flying off the coast of the Aleutian Islands within the Air Defense Identification Zone (an area of international waters that stretches 200 miles from US coastline), officials at NORAD said in a statement to ABC News.
Then at approximately 11 a.m. EDT, NORAD F-15 fighters from the Continental NORAD Region intercepted and visually identified two additional Bear bombers flying off the central California coast, well away from U.S. sovereign airspace.
While Northcom is not saying precisely how far out the California intercept occurred, one official said it was on the outer lines of the ADIZ, meaning it could have been as far out as 200 miles. US airspace begins 12 miles from the coasts. The US asks military aircraft from other countries operating in that space to identify themselves and will make sure they’ve changed course away from US shores before backing away.
While intercepts of Russian aircraft off Alaska occur frequently, intercepts off California are less common. In June last year a two long-range Russian bombers flew within 50 miles of northern California.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel is holding firm that there is no basis for re-opening negotiations with Greece. Merkel said, “It’s not a matter of weeks but of days, to save Greece from collapse.”
Greek banks are down to their last few days of cash as the ECB refuses to lend emergency funding claiming Athens was not serious about implementing real reforms. Merkel, under pressure in Germany to cut Greece loose, made clear it was up to Tsipras to present convincing proposals after Athens spurned tax rises, spending cuts and pension and labor reforms that were on the table before its 240 billion euro ($262.7 billion) bailout expired last week.
Euro zone finance ministers argued that their new Greek colleague Euclid Tsakalotos, while more courteous than his abrasive predecessor Yanis Varoufakis, had brought no new proposals to a preparatory meeting before the summit.
“I have the strong impression there were 18 … ministers of finance who felt the urgency of the situation and there is one … who doesn’t feel the urgency of the situation,” Belgian Finance Minister Johan Van Overtveldt said.
Greek officials said the leftist government openly repeated a reform plan Tsipras sent to the euro zone last week before Greek voters, in a referendum on Sunday, overwhelmingly rejected the austerity terms previously on offer for a bailout.
Market turmoil coming.
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