The Fed announced this morning that they will be extending U.S. dollar liquidity swaps through summer of 2011. This is basically their way of saying that they’re worried about the risk of a dollar funding crisis still. That’s not unreasonable given the elevated risks in Europe (it’s nice to see a more proactive Fed), however, it does expose the USA to a risk that it should never have – foreign denominated debt risk. They issued this useful primer on swaps along with the announcement:
Why has the Federal Reserve re-established temporary U.S. dollar liquidity swap facilities with foreign central banks?
The swap facilities announced in May 2010 respond to the re-emergence of strains in short term funding markets in Europe. They are designed to improve liquidity conditions in global money markets and to minimize the risk that strains abroad could spread to U.S. markets, by providing foreign central banks with the capacity to deliver U.S. dollar funding to institutions in their jurisdictions.
With which central banks has the Federal Reserve entered into swap facilities?
The Federal Reserve has established swap arrangements with the Bank of Canada (BOC), the Bank of England (BOE), the European Central Bank (ECB), the Swiss National Bank (SNB), and the Bank of Japan (BOJ).
How will the swap facilities function?
The swap lines with the ECB, BOE, SNB and BOJ will provide these central banks with the capacity to conduct tenders of U.S. dollars in their local markets at fixed local rates for full allotment, similar to arrangements that had been in place previously. The swap line with the Bank of Canada allows for drawings of up to $30 billion. The terms, structure, and operational mechanics of these swap agreements closely parallel the arrangements that expired on February 1, 2010. For reference please see the attached link.
For how long are the swap facilities expected to be operational?
These swap arrangements have been authorized through August 1, 2011. Central banks may request drawings on their swap lines up to the date of expiration.
Is the Federal Reserve exposed to foreign exchange or private bank risk in extending these lines?
No. Dollars provided through the reciprocal currency swaps are provided by the Federal Reserve to foreign central banks, not to the institutions obtaining the funding in these operations. The foreign central bank receiving dollars determines the terms on which it will lend dollars onward to
Hopefully this portends a shake-up of the Administration’s economic policy but that will very much depend on who is appointed to replace him. It is, once again, the economy stupid and Larry’s stint as Director of the National Economics Council has given us far too much of the same at a time where we really needed — change. As Barry Rhitholtz points out:
He was one of the chief architects of the crisis. In addition to believing all of the usual foolishness about efficient markets, he bought into the radical deregulation arguments pushed by the free market absolutists.
Summers was Treasury Secretary when Glass Steagall was repealed. Instead of speaking out against the irresponsible Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act (Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999), he actively supported it. Instead of explaining to the public how Glass Steagall prevented Wall Street crises from spilling over into Main Street for 65 years, he rolled over for Citibank. The repeal of Glass Steagall was not a cause of the crisis, but it allowed the net damage to be far, far worse than it would have otherwise been. And it was emblematic of the corporate takeover of the legislative process. For a fee (campaign donation) you could write your own regulations. How could that ever go wrong?
Even more ruinously, Summers oversaw the passage of Commodities Futures Modernization Act of 2000 that exempted financial derivatives from all regulatory oversight. The CFMA made the AIG collapse not only possible, but likely. It helped to set up both Lehman and Bear Stearns. CFMA allowed AIG FP to write over $3 trillion in derivatives, reserving precisely zero dollars in case an underwritten derivative needed to be paid.
Larry has to get out of town before the Administration goes after his meal-ticket and begins asking Big Business to pay their fair share, an issue that is very likely to shape the next election cycle. The chart on the left is a measure of taxes paid in relation to GDP and you’ll notice that corporations…
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U.S. car sales are up. It's easy to explain why: car buyers borrow more as standards loosen The average loan on a new car climbed to $26,719 in the third quarter, up by $756 from a year earlier, and the most in at least five years, according to data collected by Experian Plc.
Despite borrowing so much more, average monthly payments on new car loans rose only $6 to $458. That is because banks and finance companies were willing to lend at lower rates and grant borrowers more time to repay.
Lenders made 26.04 percent of their loans on new cars to buyers with subprime credit scores, up from 24.84 percent a year earlier, said Experian, which collects car title and financing information to compile its reports. For loans on used cars, the...
As the charts last week indicated might happen, the S&P 500 has fallen four straight days and failed to hold its breakout above 1800 while the Dow Jones Industrials lost 16,000. Only the NASDAQ is still holding on to its breakout above 4000. Although the Basic Materials sector was the leader on Wednesday, the Technology sector was strong, as well, and in fact Tech stocks have been the strongest over the past week and the past month.
As markets finally show a willingness to pullback somewhat from their torrid pace, the bears are trotting out every naysayer they can lay their hands on to scare investors away, including smart folks like Carl Icahn, who is “very cautious,” and Nobel Prize winner Robert Shiller and his stock market “bubble” assertions. Sure, valuations are high on a historic...
Oculus Innovative Sciences (Nasdaq: OCLS) announced Wednesday an offering to sell securities to select accredited investors for aggregate gross proceeds of $2.2 million. Oculus intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for working capital and general corporate purposes.
The securities in the offering include 550,000 shares of Oculus common stock at a price of $4.00 per share with no warrant coverage. The offering is expected to close on or about December 9, 2013, subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions.
Dawson James Securities, Inc. acted as the exclusive placement agent for the offering.
The securities described above are being offered pursuant to a shelf registration statement (File No. 333-17...
The absurd “War on Gold” that India has launched this year has been covered many times on this site. From the moment I read about it, it was obvious that if Indians want their gold, the Indians will have their gold. You can’t break thousands of years of tradition and culture because of the ignorant whims of a few bureaucrats.
Earlier today, Reuters published an article detailing the exten...
One of my favorite long-term economic indicators has been the historical pattern of vehicle miles driven. I post a monthly update on the topic shortly after the Department of Transportation's Office of Highway Information publishes its latest data on Traffic Volume Trends.
My preferred way to analyze the data is on a per-capita basis, so I was particularly interested in a study release earlier today by U.S. PRIG on the decline of driving in major cities.
Here is an excerpt from the press release:
The report, "Transportation in Transition: A Look at Changing Travel Patterns in America's Biggest Cities," is ba...
GES – Guess? Inc. – Shares in apparel and accessories retailer Guess are trading lower on Wednesday ahead of the company’s third-quarter earnings report after the closing bell. Options changing hands on the stock during morning trading indicates some traders are bracing for shares to potentially drop to the lowest level since early-October by December expiration. The stock currently trades down 2.0% on the day at $33.24 just before 11:30 a.m. EST.
Around 1,700 of the Dec $29 strike put options have changed hands on GES so far today, more than two time...
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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.
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These rallies are becoming familiar. In early July we saw a streak of 12 of 13 sessions in a row up, early September 11 of 12, and mid October 11 of 13 (current streak). It is a bit uncanny the similarities and how the escalator goes straight up in vertical ascent as we see indexes come out of mini corrections during QE. So we are about at the same stage where the last two began to tire, so it will be interesting if this is similar or if the current consensus of the market that there is nothing to worry about until next year as the Fed and D.C. are both off the table and this 3% annual growth rate in earnings we are now seeing in the S...
Welcome to the fouth update of the IRA Virtual Portfolio. First I am going to summarize the current state of the Portfolio then I will get into all the activity we had during September expiration.
Profit and Loss – Net of closed positions the portfolio is up a total of $769
Market Commentary – Last expiration I said, "I would like to put a total of $20,000 to work by the end of SEP expiration. If the VIX pops up to around 20 I plan to put about $50,000 total to work." The market didn't quite reach the goal but I did manage to deploy $15,000 of buying power. I still feel the market is too high and expect a correction during October. If the vix pops up to around 20 I still plan to put about $50,000 to work. If a correction doesn't happen I still plan to have a total of $25,000 in buying power put to work by October expiration. Now on to the act...
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Come and get it! Read all about it! Biotechs, biotechs and more biotechs to buy buy buy for your portfolio! To date, almost 30 biotech companies have hit the market. Most of the time, there are fewer than 10-12!
For the last five years, biotechs have had issues obtaining offer prices above expectations. In 2013, that trend looks to be broken. According to BiotechNow, the offer prices are 4% above expectations! In addition, biotechs are going public with little more than a wing and a prayer (pre-clinical or Phase 1 data only). Really? What this means is that the drug or technology looks good in mice, rats, or dogs, etc, but there is no smidgen of evidence that it will work in humans. That's what is called an appitite for RISK!
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