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Archive for 2011

Everything You Wanted To Know About EFSF (But Should Be Afraid To Ask)

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

With the weekend full of on-again-off-again comments from various European, Asian, and US politicians and central bankers with regard the chances of various incarnations of the EFSF solving all of our ills (or not), Nomura’s Fixed Income Research team has what we feel is one of the most definitive analyses of the various options. We have discussed the self-exciting strange attractor nature of the endgame that will be a leveraged EFSF many times recently. The Nomura team, however, does a great job of breaking down various scenarios, such as Structural Weaknesses of EFSF 2.0, Proposals for an EFSF 3.0 (and their variants), Leverage-based options, and EFSF 2.0 as TARP and how these will result in one of three final outcomes: fiscal union, monetization, or major restructurings risking the end of the euro, as everyone searches for a steady state solution to the ‘problem’ of the eurozone.

While the most elegant solutions have no official sanction, we think the necessary political resolve is yet to be forthcoming, and the technical issues are challenging if not insurmountable for many of the legal workarounds, resulting in the need for yet another round of parliamentary approvals. Consequently, we see a significant risk that the market, looking for large headlines and enhanced flexibility, will be disappointed at least in the short run.

The search for a steady state solution

In analyzing the eurozone debt crisis, the key challenge is to assess the likely path towards a steady state solution, defined as the market no longer being concerned about future default risks on government debt – at least over a time-frame that is meaningful to immediate asset allocation decisions. We have highlighted three broad alternative steady state solutions:

1. Full fiscal union and the issuance of Eurobonds with a joint and several liability structure or at least unconditional credit risk transfers to stronger countries for a extensive period of time (for sustainability to be reestablished).

2. Aggressive policy reflation, whereby the ECB significantly expands its balance sheet and its SMP program. (Given the requirement of EU governments to recapitalize the ECB, this option ultimately begins to blend into option 1.

3. Default and debt restructuring in selected non-core countries and possible end of the euro area.

Option 1 is not under consideration at this juncture since all forms


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Secular Bull and Bear Markets

Courtesy of Doug Short.

Was the March 2009 low the end of a secular bear market and the beginning of a secular bull? Without crystal ball, we simply don’t know.

One thing we can do is examine the past to broaden our understanding of the range of possibilities. An obvious feature of this inflation-adjusted is the pattern of long-term alternations between up-and down-trends. Market historians call these “secular” bull and bear markets from the Latin word saeculum “long period of time” (in contrast to aeternus “eternal” — the type of bull market we fantasize about).

 

Click to View
Click for a larger image

 

If we study the data underlying the chart, we can extract a number of interesting facts about these secular patterns:

 

 

The annualized rate of growth from 1871 through the end of August is 1.93%. If that seems incredibly low, remember that the chart shows “real” price growth, excluding inflation and dividends. If we factor in the dividend yield, we get an annualized return of 6.58%. Yes, dividends make a difference. Unfortunately that has been less true during the past three decades than in earlier times. When we let Excel draw a regression through the data, the slope is an even lower annualized rate of 1.71% (see the regression section below for further explanation).

If we added in the value lost from inflation, the “nominal” annualized return comes to 8.80% — the number commonly reported in the popular press. But for an accurate view of the purchasing power of the dollar, we’ll stick to “real” numbers.

Since that first trough in 1877 to the March 2009 low:

  • Secular bull gains totaled 2075% for an average of 415%.
  • Secular bear losses totaled -329% for an average of -65%.
  • Secular bull years total 80 versus 52 for the bears, a 60:40 ratio.

This last bullet probably comes as a surprise to many people. The finance industry and media have conditioned us to view every dip as a buying opportunity. If we realize that bear markets have accounted for about 40% of the past 122 years, we can better…
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Bernanke Getting Cold Feet On European Bank Bail Out?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Two weeks after Bernanke agreed to invest unlimited taxpayer funds in the form of global FX swap lines to prevent a worldwide dollar funding squeeze arising from the Europen financial collapse, the Chairman appears to be getting cold feet. BusinessWeek reports: “The Federal Reserve Bank of New York may ask foreign lenders for more detailed daily reports on liquidity as the U.S. steps up monitoring of risks from Europe’s sovereign debt crisis, according to two people with knowledge of the matter. Regulators held informal talks with some of the largest European lenders about producing a “fourth-generation daily liquidity” or 4G report, according to the people, who asked for anonymity because communications with central bankers are confidential. The reports may cover potential liabilities such as foreign-exchange swaps and credit-default swaps, said one person. The U.S. has already increased the number of examiners embedded in these banks, the person said.” In other words, not only after Bernanke’s pledge to fund as much money as is needed to prevent bank defaults around the world, is he actually going to have enough information to determine if there is any danger of this money not getting repaid. Well, better late than never. But at least we can permanently set aside any latent questions over whether European banks have liquidity problems. When even the Fed no longer believes you, you have far bigger problems than just liquidity (except for Dexia: liquidity there may well be the largest problem, but at least it won’t be for long).

From Business Week:

Concern is growing that European lenders may falter as Greece teeters on the brink of default. U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner has warned that failure to bolster European backstops would threaten “cascading default, bank runs and catastrophic risk” for the global economy.

 

“The Fed is trying to understand what the pressure points are in terms of liquidity and potential risks that are imposed by foreign banks to domestic institutions in our financial system,” said Kevin Petrasic, an attorney at the Washington- based law firm of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLC. “There is a little bit more sense of urgency as a result of what’s going on in Europe.”

 

“The report requires rapid


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Koch Brothers Flout Law Getting Richer With Secret Iran Sales

Intro by Zeke Miller at Business Insider

 

Koch Brothers Flout Law Getting Richer With Secret Iran Sales

By Asjylyn Loder and David Evans  

In May 2008, a unit of Koch Industries Inc., one of the world’s largest privately held companies, sent Ludmila Egorova-Farines, its newly hired compliance officer and ethics manager, to investigate the management of a subsidiary in Arles in southern France. In less than a week, she discovered that the company had paid bribes to win contracts.

“I uncovered the practices within a few days,” Egorova- Farines says. “They were not hidden at all.”

She immediately notified her supervisors in the U.S. A week later, Wichita, Kansas-based Koch Industries dispatched an investigative team to look into her findings, Bloomberg Markets magazine reports in its November issue.

By September of that year, the researchers had found evidence of improper payments to secure contracts in six countries dating back to 2002, authorized by the business director of the company’s Koch-Glitsch affiliate in France.

“Those activities constitute violations of criminal law,” Koch Industries wrote in a Dec. 8, 2008, letter giving details of its findings. The letter was made public in a civil court ruling in France in September 2010; the document has never before been reported by the media.

Egorova-Farines wasn’t rewarded for bringing the illicit payments to the company’s attention. Her superiors removed her from the inquiry in August 2008 and fired her in June 2009, calling her incompetent, even after Koch’s investigators substantiated her findings. She sued Koch-Glitsch in France for wrongful termination.

Obsessed with Secrecy

Koch-Glitsch is part of a global empire run by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, who have taken a small oil company they inherited from their father, Fred, after his death in 1967, and built it into a chemical, textile, trading and refining conglomerate spanning more than 50 countries.

Koch Industries is obsessed with secrecy, to the point that it discloses only an approximation of its annual revenue — $100 billion a year — and says nothing about its profits.

The most visible part of Koch Industries is its consumer brands, including Lycra fiber and Stainmaster carpet. Georgia- Pacific LLC, which Koch owns, makes Dixie cups, Brawny paper towels and Quilted Northern bath tissue.

Charles, 75, and David,


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From A Lexington, KY Gas Station Bathroom

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Presented without comment.





Weekly Market Commentary: Weekly Consolidation Break

Courtesy of Declan Fallon

The troubles on the daily timeframe extend into the weekly. The consolidation (‘bear flag’) breaks on the weekly charts have handed impetus back to the bears and created a whole new source of overhead supply to consume any emerging demand. For many of these ‘bear flags’ the most likely outcome is a measured move lower.

Leading down are Small Caps. Friday saw a clear break of the consolidation. The Russell 2000 looks destined to test 593 support. For bulls to have a shot there needs to be a smooth rally-and-break of 760 – anything less will only lead to indecision.

The Nasdaq, like the Russell 2000, is looking for a measured move lower. The immediate target is 2,160 with last ditch support down at 2,100. The weekly chart shows a new ‘sell’ trigger in on-balance-volume.

The Dow was another index to crack. It had already generated a ‘sell’ trigger in its on-balance-volume although stochastics have not confirmed an oversold condition.

The S&P was the only index to perhaps hang on to consolidation support. Like the Dow it has a ‘sell’ trigger in on-balance-volume, but stochastics are no longer oversold.

As for next week. if bulls can prevent the consolidation breakdowns from expanding it will be a job well done. European fundamentals will play a heavy role in next weeks action; Greece hogging 99.9% of news is an all-too obvious “victim” but it’s hard to see where the good news is going to come from. Bulls have their work cut out.

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Dr. Declan Fallon is the Senior Market Technician and Community Director for Zignals.com. I offer a range of stock trading strategies for global markets which can be Previewed for Free with delayed trade signals. You can also view the top-10


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Dexia Nationalization Imminent?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Back on Friday, when we closed out the Dexia long sub CDS trade, we said “We expect a partial or complete nationalization to be announced imminently, which in addition to all other side effects, would lead in a Bear Stearnsing of all accrued profit.” Sure enough, here is the Sunday Times on the very topic… And while a nationalization of Dexia, which now appears a matter of hours if not days, will be bad for anyone still long the bank’s CDS (it should trade down to pari with Belgium tomorrow, just as Bear CDS trades in line with JPM), it is pretty horrifying for SovX and Eurocore CDS in general, now that a bank which holds assets amounting to 180% of Belgium’s GDP, is about to be nationalized by the very same country. Anyone who is still not long Belgium CDS, this is probably your last chance to get on that particular train. Of course, if one is waiting patiently in line at a Dexia ATM machine, one is forgiven.

Source: Sunday Times.






Meltdown – The Conclusion: “After The Fall”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Previously, we brought you parts one, two and three of the Canadian must see documentary “Meltdown.” In this final episode “After the Fall”, we hear about the sheikh who says the crash never happened; a Wall Street king charged with fraud; a congresswoman who wants to jail the bankers; and the world leaders who want a re-think of capitalism. As one world leader handles the crisis through denial, other leaders try to re-think capitalism. Even though the causes of the 2008 meltdown are now clear, there is no magic formula to stop it from happening again. The world has to start planning for the next crisis, even as we recognise that this one is not over yet.

Courtesy of Al Jazeera





Hokey Pokey Plan

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by ilene.

(Taken from the Week Ahead Section of Stock World Weekly)

America for Sale The Fed announced its upcoming schedule for “Operation Twist.” The Fed plans to buy approximately $44 billion long-term treasuries funded by its sale of approximately $44 billion short-term bonds in October. While this program was named after the dance craze of the early 60’s, a more appropriate name might be “Operation Hokey Pokey,” since it is a simple program of exchanging short bonds for long bonds, or in other words “you put your short bonds in, you pull your long bonds out, you put your short bonds in and you shake them all about.” 

One of the purported beneficiaries of the Fed’s policy is the housing market because “Operation Twist” is expected to push interest rates down for home mortgages, which will (hopefully) put more money in homeowners’ pockets, and ultimately the economy at large. 

The housing market can use the help. A recent survey of economists, analysts and real estate professionals concluded that the “housing market remains shaky and is unlikely to deliver significant growth in prices over the next five years.” On the other hand, many question the wisdom of the Fed’s intervention. Robert Shiller, cofounder of MacroMarkets, opined “markets and government institutions are visibly struggling to respond consistently to an unprecedented rash of crises and conflicts. These struggles diminish confidence, which compounds the underlying economic stresses and lowers expectations.” (Five more years of housing problems, with some stability in local markets)

Paul Craig Roberts questioned the potential efficacy of the Fed’s Hokey Pokey program. In Saving the Rich, Losing the Economy, he wrote, “The Federal Reserve announced that the bank would purchase $400 billion of long-term Treasury bonds over the next nine months in an effort to drive long-term US interest rates even further below the rate of inflation, thus maximizing the negative rate of return on the purchase of long-term Treasury bonds. The Federal Reserve officials say that this will lower mortgage rates by a few basis points and renew the housing market.

“The officials say that QE 3, unlike its predecessors, will not result in the Federal Reserve printing more dollars in order to monetize US debt. Instead, the central bank will raise money for the bond purchases by selling holdings of short-term debt. Apparently,
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Zero Hedge

Pentagon "Loses Track" Of Equipment From $750mm Bomb-Spotting Program, Finds On eBay & Craigslist

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tyler Durden.

Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

The Pentagon lost track of sensitive equipment from a $750 million program to help U.S. soldiers spot roadside bombs — and some of it wound up for sale on eBay, Craigslist and other websites, according to a Navy intelligence document obtained by The Intercept.

The report went on to state that “more than 32,000 pieces of equipment were issued” under the program, and the items “are NOT for civili...



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Phil's Favorites

5 Things To Ponder: Random Musings

Courtesy of Lance Roberts via STA Wealth Management

This weekend's reading list is a bit of a hodge-podge of reads on a variety of different topics. However, before we get into it I wanted to address an interesting statement by the Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart who Thursday:

"Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank president Dennis Lockhart said on Thursday there was little risk of a misstep that would force the Fed to lower rates once it begins raising them.

The economy is in solid shape to weather the upcoming turn to tightening monetary policy Lockhart, said at an investment education conference in Detroit.

"'Conditions are pretty solid,' said Lockhart, who regards an initial rate hike at the June, July or September Fed meetings as a high probability. 'I take th...



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All About Trends

Mid-Day Update

Reminder: David is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

Click here for the full report.




To learn more, sign up for David's free newsletter and receive the free report from All About Trends - "How To Outperform 90% Of Wall Street With Just $500 A Week." Tell David PSW sent you. - Ilene...

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Insider Scoop

Raymond James Downgrades Power Integrations To Market Perform

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related POWI Benzinga's Top Downgrades Benzinga's Volume Movers

Analysts at Raymond James downgraded Power Integrations Inc. (NASDAQ: POWI) from Outperform to Market Perform and removed the price target of $57.00.

Power Integrations shares have dropped 18.42% over the past 52 weeks, while the S&P 500 index has surged 10.69% in the same period.

Power Integrations' shares fell 1.51% to $51.65 in pre-market trading.

Latest Ratings for POWI DateFirmActionFrom...

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Chart School

Michigan Consumer Sentiment at 93.0, An Improvement from the March Preliminary

Courtesy of Doug Short.

The University of Michigan final Consumer Sentiment for March came in at 93.0, up from the 91.2 March preliminary reading but down from the final reading of 95.4 in February and the 98.1 level in January. Investing.com had forecast 92.0 for the March final.

See the chart below for a long-term perspective on this widely watched indicator. I've highlighted recessions and included real GDP to help evaluate the correlation between the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index and the broader economy.


...



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Promotions

Watch Phil on Money Talk on BNN Now!

Kim Parlee interviews Phil on Money Talk. Be sure to watch the replays if you missed the show last night. As usual, Phil provides an excellent program packed with macro analysis, important lessons and trading ideas. (And get this, Obama - the President - is following Phil on Twitter.) ~ Ilene

 

The replay is now available on BNN's website. For the three part series, click on the links below. 

Part 1 is here. Part 2 is here. Part 3 is here.   ...

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Sabrient

Sector Detector: Bulls retake the wheel, with a little help from their friends at the Fed

Reminder: Sabrient is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

Courtesy of Scott Martindale at Sabrient Systems

Well, it didn’t take long for the bulls to jump on their buying opportunity, with a little help from the bulls’ friend in the Fed. In fact, despite huge daily swings in the market averages driven by daily news regarding timing of interest rate hikes, the strength in the dollar, and oil prices, trading actually has been quite rational, honoring technical formations and support levels and dutifully selling overbought conditions and buying when oversold. Yes, the tried and true investing clichés continue to work -- “Don’t fight the Fed,” and “The trend is your friend.”

In this weekly update, I give my view of the cur...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of March, 23rd, 2015

Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...



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Digital Currencies

Bitcoin vs. Uber: Bitcoin Lovers Respond to Mish

Courtesy of Mish.

I recently commented that it would not surprise me if bitcoin plunged to $1.00. That was not a prediction, it was a comment.

Still, I still feel a collapse in bitcoin is likely.

For discussion, please see Cash Dinosaur: France Limits Cash Transactions to €1,000, Puts Restrictions on Gold; Bitcoin End Coming?

In response, reader Creighton writes ...

Hello Mish

While I'm not going to argue the point about the possibility that Bitcoin drops to $1, or less, (that could happen yet, but not for the reasons you propose) I felt it necessary to point out something you seem to have overlooked.

While it's likely that the US government watching Bitco...



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Market Shadows

Kimble Charts: South Korea's EWY

Kimble Charts: South Korea's EWY

By Ilene 

Chris Kimble likes the iShares MSCI South Korea Capped (EWY), but only if it breaks out of a pennant pattern. This South Korean equities ETF has underperformed the S&P 500 by 60% since 2011.

You're probably familiar with its largest holding, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, and at least several other represented companies such as Hyundai Motor Co and Kia Motors Corp.

...



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Option Review

Cypress Semi Draws Bullish Option Plays

Bullish trades abound in Cypress Semiconductor options today, most notably a massive bull call spread initiated in the July expiry contracts. One strategist appears to have purchased 30,000 of the Jul 16.0 strike calls at a premium of $0.89 each and sold the same number of Jul 19.0 strike calls at a premium of $0.22 apiece. Net premium paid to put on the spread amounts to $0.67 per contract, thus establishing a breakeven share price of $16.67 on the trade. Cypress shares reached a 52-week high of $16.25 back on Friday, March 13th, and would need to rally 4.6% over the current level to exceed the breakeven point of $16.25. The spread generates maximum potential profits of $2.33 per contract in the event that CY shares surge more than 20% in the next four months to reach $19.00 by July expiration. Shar...



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Pharmboy

2015 - Biotech Fever

Reminder: Pharmboy is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

PSW Members - well, what a year for biotechs!   The Biotech Index (IBB) is up a whopping 40%, beating the S&P hands down!  The healthcare sector has had a number of high flying IPOs, and beat the Tech Sector in total nubmer of IPOs in the past 12 months.  What could go wrong?

Phil has given his Secret Santa Inflation Hedges for 2015, and since I have been trying to keep my head above water between work, PSW, and baseball with my boys...it is time that something is put together for PSW on biotechs in 2015.

Cancer and fibrosis remain two of the hottest areas for VC backed biotechs to invest their monies.  A number of companies have gone IPO which have drugs/technologies that fight cancer, includin...



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Stock World Weekly

Stock World Weekly

Newsletter writers are available to chat with Members regarding topics presented in SWW, comments are found below each post.

Here's this week's Stock World Weekly.

Click here and sign in with your user name and password. 

 

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Help One Of Our Own PSW Members

"Hello PSW Members –

This is a non-trading topic, but I wanted to post it during trading hours so as many eyes can see it as possible.  Feel free to contact me directly at jennifersurovy@yahoo.com with any questions.

Last fall there was some discussion on the PSW board regarding setting up a YouCaring donation page for a PSW member, Shadowfax. Since then, we have been looking into ways to help get him additional medical services and to pay down his medical debts.  After following those leads, we are ready to move ahead with the YouCaring site. (Link is posted below.)  Any help you can give will be greatly appreciated; not only to help aid in his medical bill debt, but to also show what a great community this group is.

http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/help-get-shadowfax-out-from-the-darkness-of-medical-bills-/126743

Thank you for you time!




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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

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