US retail sales slip, layoffs rise; China debt growth slows; lithium prices surge; India industrial production slumps; Australia bans Chinese investment; UST 10yr at 1.16%; oil up and gold down; NZ$1 = 71.8 USc; TWI-5 = 73.2

US retail sales slip, layoffs rise; China debt growth slows; lithium prices surge; India industrial production slumps; Australia bans Chinese investment; UST 10yr at 1.16%; oil up and gold down; NZ$1 = 71.8 USc; TWI-5 = 73.2

Here's our summary of key economic events overnight that affect New Zealand, with news commodity prices are staying high, even rising still.

But first, last week's American retail sales were not positive with a -2.6% fall from the prior month, and the year-on-year gain being whittled down sharply to +2.1%

American data for job openings and labour market turnover rates were little changed although the "layoff and discharge rate" rose. And the number of help-wanted ads increased more slowly in December, evidence their labour market is losing momentum.

The NFIB Small Business Optimism index also fell sharply in their December survey to be its lowest since the start of the pandemic there.

China reported its debt growth moderated in December, with loans rising +13.3% from the same month a year ago, but they fell from November largely because of a sharp fall in lending by shadow banks. Corporate bond issuance slowed to the lowest level since September 2018.

Battery-grade lithium prices are surging after hitting a near record low in mid-2020. But they are up +50% from then, driven by tight supplies and strong growth in electric car sales in the local vehicle market, the world's largest. They had fallen steadily since 2018, but this latest rise has taken them to ¥50,000 yuan/tonne.

And it is not just an EV surge in China; German carmakers tripled their EV sales in 2020 in response to regulatory requirements and the three large car making firms now sell much more than Tesla, and pulling away.

Meanwhile, despite all their talk, and supposed prowess in using the power of Beijing's central Government, iron ore prices have not yet fallen in China, and coal prices are still rising too. Ditto for corn and rice. Commodity prices are being pushed up worldwide based on Chinese demand.

And China is gearing up for its annual Spring Festival holiday that starts on February 12 this year, the year of the Ox.

In India, industrial production slumped in November and by very much more than expected.

Europe seems to be heading for a double-dip recession as lockdowns spread as the pandemic waves spread faster after poor public health control policies over the past few months.

In Australia, they have effectively placed an informal ban on further Chinese 'investments' in local companies after their federal government used national security concerns to reject a AU$300 million purchase of a local builder. The bad blood between the two countries isn't hurting Australia yet, and isn't seeing Canberra backing down.

Wall Street was lower today by -0.4% in early afternoon trade but has recovered to 'flat'. Overnight European markets were lower by about -0.2% although London fell more than -0.7%. Yesterday, Shanghai rose a very strong +2.2% while Hong Kong rose +1.3%. Tokyo's rise was a more modest +0.1% however. The ASX200 ended its session down -0.3%, while the NZX50 Capital Index fell another -0.8% as the local correction extended.

The latest global compilation of COVID-19 data is here. The global tally is rising faster, now at 91,087,000 and up +651,000 in one day. We are heading for 100 mln within two weeks mainly because the UK variant is taking off worldwide now. It is still very grim everywhere except in our region. Global deaths reported now exceed 1,950,000 and +12,000 since this time yesterday as death rates rise everywhere.

But the largest number of reported cases globally are still in the US, which rose +235,000 for their tally to reach 23,172,000. The US remains the global epicenter of the virus. The number of active cases rose overnight and is now at 9,099,000 and that level is up +32,000 in just one day, so more new cases than recoveries again by a substantial margin. Their death total is up to 386,000 however (+3000), effectively a "9/11" every day there. The US now has a COVID death rate of 1163/mln, sadly comparing with the disastrous UK level (1222) which is rising even faster now.

In Australia, their Sydney-based community resurgence is back under control although officials are on high alert over the risks from the UK variant which is starting to show up in the community. That takes their all-time cases reported to 28,634, and +39 more cases yesterday with most in managed isolation. But 311 of these cases are 'active' (-1). Reported deaths are unchanged at 909.

The UST 10yr yield will start today up +2 bps at just under 1.16%. Their 2-10 rate curve is steeper at +102 bps, their 1-5 curve is also steeper at +43 bps, and their 3m-10 year curve is considerably steeper too at +110 bps. The Australian Govt 10 year yield is up +4 bps at 1.13%. The China Govt 10 year yield is lower however, down -1 bp at 3.17%, while the New Zealand Govt 10 year yield is up +2 bps at 1.09%.

The price of gold is down -US$8 in New York at US$1842/oz.

Oil prices are +US$1 higher today at just on US$53/bbl in the US, while the international price is at just over US$56.50/bbl.

And the Kiwi dollar is the same today as at this time yesterday at 71.8 USc. Against the Australian dollar we are softish at 93 AUc. Against the euro we are unchanged at 59 euro cents. That means our TWI-5 is still at 73.2.

The bitcoin price has recovered some today, bouncing back partly to US$34,979 today, and a 15% rise. But it continues to jump around sharply with volatility +/-7% in the past 24 hours. The bitcoin rate is charted in the exchange rate set below.

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Thoughtful piece from one of the best


Good trashing of neoclassical economics. Reminds me of the fellow who asserted that food production was only 5% of the economy - so we could lose it completely and still have 95%........ Don't laugh, we hang on the every word of such buffoons

I didn't realise only 5% of people needed food to survive. Groundbreaking stuff

Meanwhile, despite all their talk, and supposed prowess in using the power of Beijing's central Government, iron ore prices have not yet fallen in China, and coal prices are still rising too.

Largest Russian coal company Elgaugol creates joint venture with China’s GH-Shipping to to boost exports to China, replacing Australian supplies; 30-50 million tons exports expected; increase in bilateral trade by $5bn annually.Link

Runaway global warming isn't helping coal prices for China.
"(Reuters) - Exceptionally cold weather sweeping through China has caused a huge increase in power demand in the world’s largest energy consumer and hampered transportation.
China’s Central Meteorological Station released the first cold warning in 2021 earlier in the week to several regions. Cities such as the eastern port city of Qingdao recorded the lowest temperature in history and the capital city Beijing had coldest day since the 1960s on Jan 7."


This is why people tend to say climate change - the impact is an increase in variation rather than a blanket increase in temperatures in all places all the time.

But you're quite right, this is further evidence of our beautifully stable climate slowly degrading - if anyone still needs convincing.

More homework required? All of this occurred without Trump or SUV's. "Unlike the relatively stable climate Earth has experienced over the last 10,000 years, Earth's climate system underwent a series of abrupt oscillations and reorganizations during the last ice age between 18,000 and 80,000 years ago (Dansgaard 1984, Bond et al. 1997, 1999). ...One of the most surprising findings was that the shifts from cold stadials to the warm interstadial intervals occurred in a matter of decades, with air temperatures over Greenland rapidly warming 8 to 15°C (Huber et al. 2006)."

There's always more homework required, but not sure this is the correct direction to apply it. The stable 10,000 years where we evolved civilisation are the critical thing we should be trying to preserve - ignoring the clear impacts we are having is not an option that favours our long term survival.

The planet warmed at a rate of 8-15 degrees in a matter of decades - and is now going to bow down to climate change controlling politicians and useful idiots.
Perhaps the climate change industry trillions are better spent on resilience, sanitation, healthcare, vaccinations etc. - and then we can better cope with earthquakes, tsunami's, pandemics etc. when the do, inevitably, come along.

What's your reference for the planet warming 8-15 degrees? The link you posted previously only related to Greenland.

Any word on how an advanced agricultural society would have fared in Greenland over that time? It is likely no coincidence that our civilization kicked off during a period with a stable climate.

Note figure 1 chart esp. the vertical axis. Also "In comparison, climate during the last ice age (between about 18,000 and 80,000 years ago) was much more variable. The abrupt warming and gradual cooling oscillations during this period of Earth’s history are know as Dansgaard-Oeschger cycles, or D-O cycles (Dansgaard 1984).

Although the D-O climate cycles have now been found in many other climate proxy records around the globe (Voelker 2002), the reason why Earth's climate was so much more variable during the last ice age is still unknown."

The article you link to is about local temperature changes apparently caused by changes in air and ocean flows. I think you're dramatically overreaching by conflating this with global temperature rises of that magnitude over decades. Perhaps it was just a slip of the tongue?

Perhaps read it again? "...the reason why Earth's climate was so much more variable during the last ice age is still unknown." Your "beautifully stable climate" theory comes from where?

Either you are not listening or you're not looking to have an honest discussion. I have not argued against the article you linked to. I don't have evidence against Greenland's temperature changing over those time frames. Your own link accepts a stable climate during the time we developed advanced civilisation.

My point is our civilisation would not have survived that fluctuation. We should be careful not to induce similar events by reducing our impact on the atmosphere. Secondly, I picked you up on your false statement confusing Greenland with the whole world. You have presented no evidence to support the world's temperature changing by 8 degrees over a few decades. I charitably assumed it was a slip of the tongue.

Perhaps do more homework? I suggest google before you accuse people of falsehood. Below note the term "global signature" and "Antarctica." You're welcome.

"These Dansgaard-Oeschger (D-O) sequences are observed most prominently in Greenland ice cores, although they have a global signature, including an out of phase Antarctic signal. They consist of warming jumps of order 10°C, occurring in typically 40 years, followed generally by a slow cooling."

These appear to relate to the changes in ice sheet location and size during the ice age - I am not surprised that local temperatures fluctuated wildly in the ice age as local ice sheets came and went.

Again - the evidence you present is for a different time period and location to what I am talking about, so I'm not sure of the relevance to how we should respond to ongoing climate change. Civilisation arose well after this period, in a different part of the globe. Perhaps I should take it as further evidence that we need to try to preserve existing sea and land ice to prevent these kinds of massive disruptions?

..i see the flat earth attitude of profile continues into the new year. I bet the family are over joyed.

Yes the flat earth society are getting lots of papers published by Harvard and Nature lately.
Wouldn't dream of having a family - am told ad nauseum they're bad for the planet.

Iconoclast, having read yesterdays New Zealand's wealth of the nation report, i.e how much is our residential property 'worth', and your query about GDP/ housing wealth and other countries , I have reposted Ireland's Wealth of the Nation report of 2006, more remarkable given that it was also provided by a bank.
GDP in Ireland 2006 was 184Billion (E). Whether vacant land is included , or not included like New Zealand is unclear.

What query are you accusing me of? You are confused. Check again

My apologies Iconoclast , it should have read Westminster.
by Westminster | 12th Jan 21, 9:25pm
A question for you how does “$1.28 trillion - four times that of the country's annual GDP” do NZ numbers stand out with contemporary country’s ?

by Westminster | 12th Jan 21, 9:25pm
A question for you how does “$1.28 trillion - four times that of the country's annual GDP” do NZ numbers stand out with contemporary country’s ?

Thankyou Nzdan, .

NZ will consider heavily to just become OZ federal states soon, just unsure if OZ willing to accept very sick but costly to manage patient.

Never happen.

I, for one, welcome our new geek overlords. Angela must be confused. "Ms Merkel, German chancellor, has sharply criticised Twitter’s decision to ban US president Donald Trump, calling it a “problematic” breach of the “fundamental right to free speech”.
Ms Merkel’s said free speech was a “fundamental right of vital importance” that could be restricted, “but only in accordance with the laws and within a framework defined by the legislator — not by the decision of the management of social media platforms”.

Bank boss Andrew Bailey dismisses negative rates talk

My doctor mate told me there is a rash of cancer in Hawkes Bay at present, especially ENT who are diagnosing one new patient a day.

Research is happening, but it's odd, wonder if it's environmental, will it affect house prices? My wife has had numerous friends in the UK with Breast cancer, she has friends battling today while working around covid restrictions. She lost her sister, her best friend battled it, have things changed or are we diagnosing better and earlier?
I know its anecdotal, but does anyone else think cancers are on the rise? If you do do you think it's environmental?

Im asking as a farmer who watches the new high tech spray regimes of neighbours, who appear to be always spraying. I see it as a 50 year old experiment on mother nature, if it's wrong then it's going to get complicated.
Im not worried about meat except perhaps imported pork, but fruit and vegetables and processed foods are nothing like historic diets.

Covid is screwing up cancer treatment in the UK

"Research is happening, but it's odd, wonder if it's environmental, will it affect house prices?" - are concerned over cancer rates and house prices? What is up with you boomers ...beggers belief.


Im not a boomer missed by a few months. Tongue on cheek on the housing .

Glad to hear good mate in Sydney is battling a rare blood cancer (fit and strong 50 yr old)..but agree with you it seems to be increasing.

Anedotally cancer may appear to be increasing simply because treatments are improving. My own family has cancer survivors and we talk about it (eg this comment) but the same cancers in the past would have led to short painful illness and then death. There is another similar factor - treament for heart problems has improved too - blood thinners and anti-cholesterol tablets are keeping the elderly alive longer (eg myself survivor of a heart attack) so we now live long enough to increase our chance of getting cancer.
Some cancer causing agents of the past are disappearing (asbestos) but there are new ones everywhere. Even old ones can become more dangerous with more women drinking alcohol despite its known correleation with breast cancer.

And obesity.

Plastic nano-particles in everything

New Atlas article here identifies a study that indicates some commonly used cancer treatments simply put cancer into a form of dormancy or hibernation rather than killing them off as has been previously believed. As our understanding is improved, newer more effective treatments are required.

Andrew.. it could be argued that early Gen Xers have often benefitted more from NZ property than boomers. If they bought early and their parents have/ had property they have profited immensely from some serious double dipping.

Good point. Probably only 4-5 years of that demographic though

I haven't heard anything down here in Canterbury, although I'm not heavily involved in the stats. My understanding is our cases are growing in line with predictions based on an increasing and aging population.

There is potential for people to think cancer overall is increasing as their own cohort of friends and families ages - cancer incidence strongly increases with age. This doesn't really relate to your comment from a Dr, but might affect other people's impressions of trends.

I do share your concerns about excessive spraying, both for environmental and potential human health reasons, but I'm certainly not an expert on this.

I had a friend from the UK staying, he is in the farm support industry. He was surprised my neighbour was praying selective hormone spray for thistles (MCPA). by helicopter with animals still in the paddock( Even with 2-4D ie, agent orange), it's a common practice here but not legal in the EU apparently.
I don't think you need yo spray for thistles, they come after a drought when there is lots of bare soil and disappear again when you get a normal spring. Spray reps disagree with me.

Most sprays have carcinogenic potential. MCPA is formulated as a 750g/L dimethyl amine salt in water plus EDTA to chelate Mg & CA ions. I would be more concerned about the amines and impurities.

Oxidative damage and alkylation are the two big ones I watch out for. If you want the NZ EPA actual classification (rightly or wrongly) use their search on chemical classifications: NZ EPA CCID website.

Agent Orange (2,4,5 T plus 2,4D) had dioxin contaminants that were the worst part of the mixture. Some made at Ivan Watkins New Plymouth. They claimed not to know about dioxions but most boffins knew and were silenced by senior management.

In Hawkes Bay I would watch for Dicamba use as well as aryloxyphenoxy herbicides like Haloxyfop - which a known carcinogens and used in high volume in NZ. Northland regional council approve use of Haloxyfop in the Nthrn Wairoa river to control Manchurian Rice grass. Too bad for all the eel farmers and recreational fisherman in the Kaipara. If only they knew.

Big ones people don't tell you about - Organosilicone surfactants. Added to almost every mix.
Solvesso 100, 150, 200 - petrol like solvents added to almost every EC formulation - cancer causing through naphtha. Plenty of viable replacements that lazy companies can't be bothered with.
Hawkes Bay does have very high rates of spray use- what is the farming type? I may be able to elucidate further.

The surface tension altering properties of co-formulants is never addressed by our regulators who rely on 'supplying company' data. If you change surface tension in metabolic processes too strongly you will disrupt metabolic processes entirely and send them awry - this helps potentiate cancers.

Glyphosate needs a mentione re recent court cases. The common base is monoisopropylamine and the adjuvant still tallow amines ethoxylate (15mole) ! Despite aquatic toxicity issues raised decades ago. Nice one NZ EPA

Disclaimer: pesticide /vetmed designer

Hi Li quid
Always looking to reduce my Glyphosate.. I have a couple of Kms of gravel roading, any alternative sprays that are effective at keeping weeds down? and dont cost the earth... Thanks

I haven't found any better than glyphosate, other than just ignoring it which is what we used to do I guess.

Fatty acid herbicides (C9 acid) derived from coconut, palm or other triglycerides are 'organic' but still have drawbacks (can itch skin and smells but truly natural, also works as insecticide at lower doses). Use rate 10x higher than glyphosate. Typically industrial grade C8-10 acid emulsified with 20% nonionic, a polysorbate 20 or similar. These products are readily available NZ.

When running a food business and campground I used the old cooking oil from the fryers as a herbicide in areas of the campground where public or environmental exposure was a concern, works great, high use rate but lesser toxicological concerns. Add some dishwash liquid if you want to make a spray mix out of it.
Ammonium sulphate is a herbicide.

Main thing is to understand the setting.
Metsulfuron is highly effective and breakdown rather quick compared with other, classical herbicides. But I would recommend not using pesticides if a less damaging way can be found.
Sodium chlorate is used in some places but can be an issue depending how it's used and stored.
The devil is in the detail.

It is worth saying that it is the mis-use of pesticides which are a greater problem, re public exposure through air or food. From what I have seen there are a lot of cowboy sprayers and farmers out there with little regard for regulations or the public. There are exceptional ones too.

Best practice if you do have to spray roadside is have a good plant back system so you don't become trapped into cyclical use of these products.

Hot water..

On the roadsides here they are mixing Glyphosate with Metsulfuron, it certainly kills everything, including any of my trees within 25 meters. I am surprised the council gets away with it in what are basically drains into waterways.

It's the Potato growers down the road that used to spray something crazy like 27x a year after some new bugs turned up. Vineyards and orchards are getting sensitive about public reactions to spray.

The council gets away with it because they're the judge, jury and executioner. Do as I say, not as I do.

Couldn't agree more. Councils have become economically trapped into inadequate, unsustainable ways of managing their land. If they can't do it without constant application of these chemicals then we are never going to actually be a green country.
Glyphosate use in NZ is well in excess of 2 million litres a year, most by councils from what I have seen. They don't want to acknowledge they haven't found a better system.

Andrew, both glyphosate and metsulfuron are approved for aquatic use in NZ. I find it as mind blowing that it is allowed as you do. Diggers and spades do more damage to aquatic habitats though. Time for a better system.

Less known is the massive organophosphate and paraquat use still in NZ.
Antibiotics in livestock - phew. Don't get me started.

I effectively control weeds in my vineyard with sheep, they just love weeds.

Unfortunately you can't use sheep in a conventional commercial orchard. :-(

From the little I understand the wine growers association of NZ are leading the forefront of livestock solutions in problems such as weed control in viticulture. Very stringent chemical use because of their customers. Doing much better than our beauracrats who are far behind the play. Well done wine growers and their respective associations.

In addition to my comment below, excess spraying is probably bad for our gut biomes, which it turns out, are very, very important.

I learnt from reading a novel that the theory about glyphosate being safe for humans is that humans don't have the pathway it uses to kill weeks. However the bacteria that populate us do have that pathway.

I lesson there in disseminating information also.

Poor diets, sedentary lifestyles, synthetic materials, environmental pollutions - I wonder how much these modern problems affect cancer rates

ydb...processed food??

processed everything


Cancer has been increasing on an upward trajectory for decades.

It's not just about what we eat, but also when and how we eat. Almost all human cultures prior to about 100 or so years ago, only ate 1-2 meals a day and often went through sustained periods of lack of food or self imposed (usually religious) fasting. Now we eat between 3-6 times a day, every day, all year. And the food is all highly processed so it hits our digestive system very differently, which impacts our gut biome (which plays a major role in our immune system). Our gut biome is significantly less diverse than samples from non-modernised cultures/tribes.

The 2016 Nobel prize in Autophagy and future research is also shedding light on this. Our bodies recycle old and damaged cells in a different and radically more effective ways when we don't eat at all for a longer period of time. But the MTOR pathway is only activated in the absence of food. Sustained calorie reduction and/or fasting in all studies (human and animal) is shown to increase lifespan, reduce rates of cancer, dementia, diabetes, heart disease etc and increasing calories and regularity of eating is shown to increase cancer, diabetes, heart disease etc

And if you apply common sense, if for most of our evolutionary past, food availability was hit and miss and in it is only since the post WW2 era, with the technological revolution in farming, food science and food storage/transport that has enabled us to eat food from all over the world in and out of season, maximised for flavour and calorie density and addictiveness, we can probably agree that it is one of the biggest changes to our diet since the neolithic. And also tracks the increases in obesity, cancer and everything else. We are massively overfed.

Humanity experienced a massive deterioration in health after the neolithic, with the archeological record showing increased death in child birth, increased disease, poor bone strength, poor teeth, smaller brains etc. Until more recently, when via technology we have been able to max out the planet for food production. And now we have the opposite problem. Excess food. And of course, with epigenetics, particular genes are being turned on neonatally and during childhood. Their effects amplified every generation, so that each child born subsequent to the post WW2 farming revolution has a little higher basal insulin (and all the horrific eventual health problems that triggers).

Great read gingerninja. I do the 16/8 intermittent fasting. That's eating within an 8 hour window (I do 10am until 6pm), and fasting the remaining time. It's easy to achieve and I'm finding the health benefits numerous.

Does that window include hot drinks like coffee or are they safe?

Hot drinks are fine, and water of course. I have black coffee in the mornings and a green tea in the evening. It's up to you on how strict to be with counting milk though. Sugar is probably pushing it, I'd say.

ok mint thanks!

I'm a big keto fan, which is complimentary to intermittent fasting and makes it much easier. It's a real eye opener getting into keto - unpleasant as the body adjusts to burning fat as an energy source on demand. But once you're in the zone the energy burn you get throughout the day is even, and you completely avoid a post lunch crash with great energy levels all day.

You can dramatically scale your food intake up and down without being hungry too. Was in Keto while we visited Rio for the 2016 Olympics, and the venue food was terrible. Would load up on meat and cheese at 6am, then not eat until 10pm when we'd head down the the local churrascaria. Didn't feel hungry once. It was quite phenomenal.

Hot drinks over 75-80 Deg C increase chances of throat cancer developing over time

I usually let my tea cool a bit...

"Crucially, 60C is likely to be a lot hotter than most cups of tea."

Tea and coffee don’t have calories (unless you add sugar or a lot of milk) so metabolically speaking it doesn’t break a fast.

Thanks. Yea I havent had sugar in coffee for years now and only have a splash of milk

The good news is cancer mortality is on a downwards trajectory. "Overall cancer mortality in the United States decreased by 31% between 1991 and 2018, according to American Cancer Society’s 70th annual report on cancer statistics. The report, released today and published in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, showed a record 2.4% decline in cancer death rates between 2017 and 2018, following a 2.2% drop between 2016 and 2017. "

Good in terms of mortality, but we were talking about prevalence

And yet last time I went for a mammogram I was offered some fancy new technique that uncovers cancers missed by regular screening. How many of these cancers would have not harmed the person affected if we didn't go looking for them?

So just roll the dice and ignore them?

I'm involved in the treatment of Prostate cancer - for low risk disease, it is incredibly hard for any treatment to improve on leaving it alone and keeping a close eye on it. Prevalence is extremely high in elderly men if you go and look for it, and most of them won't have any serious ill effects from the disease.

High risk disease is a different story, of course - I'm not saying that treatment is never justified. And as you imply, once people know they have the disease many will want to take some kind of action regardless of the research.

Sure, but if we don't go looking, we don't find and therefore can't make any informed decision on the matter

It's hard to make an informed decision because once it's found they can't necessarily predict how it's going to behave in the future. And most people aren't going to be too happy with the idea of leaving a tumour to see if it starts behaving aggressively.

So back to the original comment, how many of those cancers would have no ill effect on the persons health - if there's no way of knowing if they'll behave aggressively or not, is it not the best option to remove all doubt completely?

All treatments have side effects, so it is not as clear-cut as you might think (purely in the case of low risk, low grade cancers - in other cases it is much more obvious).

The death rate in the United States is up for the first time in many years.The death rate is the number of deaths per 100,000 people, and it has generally improved in the U.S. for the past quarter of a century. A bad flu epidemic caused an increase in 2005 and AIDS bumped it up in 1993, but it’s unusual for the death rate for the whole country to increase. Usually, we can expect to live longer than people did in times past.

At this point, a child born in 2014 can expect to live one year longer than a child born in 2015.

Has immigration kept it artificially high?

We may see some interesting gains through MRNA research following the Covid19 vaccines - it's getting a lot of attention at the moment and drug companies are eyeing up how their existing portfolios could be bolstered by it. Personally I'd like to see all the extra resources currently taken up buy Covid19 go into bowel, breast and prostate screening programmes with younger cohorts captured as part of them - I wouldn't mind paying whatever nominal tax this would probably end up costing us considering how much it may well save is in the medium, perhaps even short-term.

Just to add, it's not just calories that switch off autophagy, a sweet flavour also spikes insulin and will negate the MTOR pathway. So any tea that tastes sweet is no good for autophagy efforts. Black coffee and bitter teas are fine but nothing sweetened or containing additives. I just have black coffee and sparkling water.

Northman46, I often fast around 20 hours. Once a year, I do a 2-3 days fasts just as an annual anti-cancer boost but I definitely also experience some kind of weird euphoric, blissed out state so I can absolutely understand why religious people have been fasting for millennia.

Totally anecdotal but in terms of rejuvenation and anti-ageing, I have been carded for buying red wine this week twice (in Hawkes Bay) in two different places. I'm 41 hahah. I've been well into biohacking for about a decade. Some of it is very silly or based on premature assumptions but there is some fascinating stuff there to.

I tend to keep very sweet stuff on the down low too (it's not good for the gut biome or the endocrine system) but Hawkes Bay farmers market has the most amazing icecream truck so i've been stuffing my face with no regrets. Hahah.

Cancer rates are increasing, but so is life expectancy (until 2020). There's also been good progress in preventing and treating heart disease, I remember as a child men in their 40's dropping like flies with heart attacks. That means more people are available to be diagnosed with cancer as they haven't died of something else. I also think if you go looking for cancers like breast and prostate you'll find some that would never have affected the person's health if left.

There's also a very interesting high-quality US study of 89,000 farmers (licensed pesticide applicators) and their spouses which has been running since 1993. They've found farmers have lower rates of many diseases compared to the rest of the population, but have a higher risk for developing some cancers, including prostate cancer (but no association between glyphosate and NHL).

Lived in Te Puke for a while. Lost a few friends in kiwifruit with cancer. Hicane is a personal hatred.

Cannot believe Hicane is legal, must be one of the most deadly sprays, just ask any dog that gets within 100mtrs

Spray applicators can't drink booze for 2 weeks after applying Hicane.
Hydrogen cyanamide - used in vernilisation.
Kiwifruit industry couldn't survive without it. Government has agreed to ban it as soon as there is a viable alternative. Some companies have tried to find alternatives but nothing compares now they are used to the (economic returns of the) practice.

I picture an image of a junky who can't get off..

What is it so good at, I think from memory it etches the canes and creates more buds bust in areas that are to warm to get decent winters.

Kiwifruit needs a decent winter chill to stimulate the following summers fruit production.
HiCane mimics a good winter chill, gives higher volume of fruit and better quality king fruit with less 'buds', although incidences of increased fan & flat (undesirable) kiwifruit too.

I would guess the recent few years with mild winters and hot summers have likely increased use rate to compensate.

Good post. If you find some of my ten year old posts on here you'll see that I've been advocating a healthy lifestyle for many years. I did it at the start of Covid, but I note the dearth of lifestyle advice as a way of dealing with disease. I'll bet my internal systems are in top notch order. Shouted myself a smart watch from a boxing day sale, sleeping rate 46, maximum so far on a hill climb on a bike is 178. Perhaps a 188 max, I've yet to back that up. Measures SP02 % also, and I am usually 99% but range a point either way.

One interesting phenomenon has returned for me in the past couple of years, the activation of brown fat. I've known about the effect for 30 years, but had forgotten about it. Over the last 5 years I've dropped my body fat from a peak of perhaps 28% to around the 10-12% now ( just using visual means to guess - photos work best). Once I dropped down from about 14% I could feel the calories being burned off when I ate excessively. It seems getting mildly overweight has poisoned the function, or perhaps I was just too sedentary. Either way I'll now wake up in a sweat if I eat too much at night.

You need carbs when very fit and active. But fasting, yeah.

RHR is such a useful measure of fitness; my RHR has worked its way up to 72, through gaining weight and a lack of fitness. About to begin a few months of HITT to try and get back to the mid 50s, which I will be happy with over my current situation. Initial work will focus on losing the first few kgs of weight to the point where my feet can support running and will go from there; it's amazing what a difference shrugging off as little as 5kgs makes to joints and recovery times. I'm probably carrying an extra 20kgs over my ideal weight, maybe 30 if I wanted to take up competitive intensity. I think the mistake most people make is literally trying to run before they can really walk; the irony being once I know I can run without massive joint damage, the easier it will get.

Good work there. I did a course through my sports club to support the club, it was Maori based. They talked about the different states people are in. In English you'd say fit and healthy, working towards fit and healthy, or thinking about it but not yet doing anything towards it. Interesting concept. You'd be the middle one, take the long term view and keep working at it no matter what, even through the odd setback.

Set point theory, don't lose more than a kilo a month.

Try Waka Ama, easier on the body as far as sport goes. Although I've taken up surfing also. Nats for Waka Ama next week (Covid depending), keep your eye out for me on Maori TV. I was 8th last year, this year I'm fitter and 4kg lighter. I've beaten the national champ 3x in the last couple of months.

I like HIIT training rather than pounding the pavement for hours, gets it done and out of the way. Although to be good at the sprints I did have to put a base down.

Was the drop in life span when we moved from meat eaters to farmers?

Some genetic variations between races turning up too.

'It is a known fact that those from South Asian backgrounds (2 billion of the world’s population) have a type 2 diabetes prevalence at least twice as high as Caucasians and develop the condition five to ten years earlier '

I'd expect some genetic variations. Humans have been farming long enough for *dogs* to evolve the ability to digest carbohydrates better than their wild counterparts, so it would be odd if humans in agricultural communities haven't. On the other hand, there are populations that have always subsisted primarily on meat. Keep in mind that while evolution of humans is a slow process, evolution of bacteria is not, and they do most of the digestive work for us...

(dp, whoops)

We definitely suffered from some nutrient deficiency related health problems after becoming farmers, not to mention the new zoonotic diseases living closely with animals but many of us have had time to genetically adapt to the neolithic diet. Many have the enzyme for metabolising diary for example, although, you can be become intolerant of dairy if you have had a tummy bug, or round of antibiotics that changed the balance of your guy biome too.

Go back farther still in our evolutionary tree and we were primarily fruitarians. And if memory serves we are one of a rare number of mammals, that can metabolise alcohol, so way back when, we were clearly eating a lot of fermented fruit on the forest floor. So at some point, we went from primarily eating fruit, to being highly omnivorous and then presumably in the ice age when fruit was scarce, we adapted to hunting big game and became almost carnivorous. Until climate changed again and we adapted to grain.

However, all these prior changes were slow. The recent change to our diet have been incredibly rapid and the poor health we are seeing, I would suggest, is proof of the adaption. Those of us who can't either be disciplined about their modern diets, or else are the 30% or so of humanity who have natural resilience against much of it, are doomed to die younger from the so called "diseases of civilisation" which are all related to chronic inflammation (cancer, diabetes, heart disease). 30 years ago, you rarely saw an overweight child, let alone an obese one and type 2 diabetes was called "adult onset". However now children as young as 18 months are developing hyperinsulinemia ( ie T2 diabetes). They will die younger and have decreased rates of fertility. Fertility is declining anyway.

I should say there are a few good news stories. Lung cancer is reducing as smoking has reduced - this will also impact head and neck cancer rates (although alcohol is still doing some heavy lifting there).

The HPV vaccine will lead to much lower rates of cervical cancer, and head and neck to some extent, over the next couple of decades. Assuming the anti-vaxxers don't get their way.

Thought HPV vaccine wasn't successful, the WHO put a report out a few years back. Wonder what the side effects of vaping will be.

This is a review of 10 years of use in Australia:
Conclusions: Vaccination using 4vHPV vaccine has had a large demonstrable impact on HPV-related disease in Australia. A switch to 9vHPV could further reduce the HPV-associated cancer burden. With continued high coverage among both males and females, elimination of vaccine-type HPV disease seems achievable in Australia.

40% of the world's Li comes outta two modest holes in WA: Talison Resources at Greenbushes and Galaxy (GXY) at Ravensthorpe. There's a heap of prospective tenements just waiting something like - a leap in the Li prices......

Shout out to all the commentators on this thread - can't remember seeing a more intelligent, friendly and open minded conversation like this for ages. Kudos.

Totally agree here Ezy, this thread had been filled with insightful discussion and really enjoying hearing people's personal experiences with keto and fasting (I do keto first 3 days of each month and love it). Also great to have a expert on chemicals like liquid on here too!

It amazes me that in a time of record life longevity that people will always worry about what may or may not kill them.

It is exactly people's concern with living longer that had lead us to live longer.
Knowing what kills you is also knowing what doesn't kill you.