TrimTabs CEO Charles Biderman continued his crusade against the government’s official stats and involvement in financial markets in an interview Friday with BNN. In it, he argues that the private demand — from companies, investors, hedge funds, and pensions — just isn’t there.
by ilene - January 11th, 2010 2:02 pm
Courtesy of Tim Iacono at The Mess That Greenspan Made
From last Friday on BNN, Charles Biderman of TrimTabs talks about the odd goings on in U.S. equity markets last year where low volume and the lack of identifiable buyers have caused more than a few people to suspect that things are not as they appear.
Biderman says that in after-hours S&P500 futures markets, as little as $5 to $10 billion a month in buying could be responsible for a large part of last year’s gains and, when you think about it, $5 to $10 billion a month for the U.S. government in 2009 was "chump change".
by ilene - January 3rd, 2010 3:52 am
Courtesy of Mike Whitney writing at Global Research
Is the Fed manipulating the stock market? TrimTabs CEO Charles Biderman seems to think so, and he makes a strong case for his theory in an article at zerohedge.com.
Biderman focuses his attention on the mystery surrounding the stock market’s 9-month rally and asks, "Where is the money coming from?" After all, the market cap has increased by more than $6 trillion since March 9. That amount of money should be fairly easy to trace; right?
Biderman: "The most positive economic development in 2009 was the stock market rally. (But) We cannot identify the source of the new money that pushed stock prices up so far so fast. For the most part, the money did not from the traditional players that provided money in the past."
Huh? So, this vast infusion of liquidity--which helped the banks to avoid painful deleveraging--did not come from the usual suspects?
That’s right. According to Biderman, the money did not come from (a) companies ("which were a huge net seller") (b) retail investor funds, (c) retail investors, (d) foreign investors, or (e) pension funds.
What about the hedge funds?
Biderman: "We have no way to track in real time what hedge funds do, and they may well have shifted some assets into U.S. equities. But we doubt their buying power was enormous because they posted an outflow of $12 billion from April through November."
Okay; so we’re back to Square One. Where did the money come from?
Biderman again: "As far as we know, it is not illegal for the Federal Reserve or the U.S. Treasury to buy S&P 500 futures. Moreover, several officials have suggested the government should support stock prices. For example, former Fed board member Robert Heller opined in the Wall Street Journal in 1989, “Instead of flooding the entire economy with liquidity, and thereby increasing the danger of inflation, the Fed could support the stock market directly by buying market averages in the futures market, thereby stabilizing the market as a whole.” In a Financial Times article in 2002, an unidentified Fed official was quoted as acknowledging that policymakers had considered buying U.S. equities directly, not just futures. The official mentioned that the Fed could “theoretically buy anything to pump money into the system.”