by phil - July 5th, 2012 8:16 am
Before we begin – let's catch up on the Libor scandal:
"The Global Banking Industry relies on London having virtually no regulatory oversight. The bulk of the Global financial crimes occur in London. David Cameron, of course, is keen to protect the franchise of the city of London – it's the big profit center for his country and his Government – essentially peddling in fraud."
That is the key point made by Max Keiser (7:20) in the above video. As Keiser points out, fraud and manipulation are rampant in the Global Financial Markets and have been for years. I've been saying so and we have great systems to profit from the manipulation of fraudulent markets but they wouldn't work so well if the markets were not a sham, would they?
While I'd love to go back to picking value stocks in clean market environment – I'm certainly not holding my breath. Fining BCS $450M for making Billions of Dollars in a conspiracy to defraud Trillions of Dollars of Global investors over periods of years means you shouldn't hold yours either. I'm pretty sure we can expect more of the same for a long, long time.
This morning the Euro and the Dollar have been flying up and down along with our index futures on rumors that China will or won't be easing (100-point swings in the Dow pre-market) or that the ECB will or won't ease and that other countries will or won't kick in stimulus. You know, the same old crap we've been hearing since early June – giving us roughly 10% gains across the International board – even as the Global Economic Data continues to decay:
We are still "constructively bullish" which is what led us to stay cashy and cautious short-term, while holding bullish on our long-term bets. We haven't got any strong downside bets as we have clear lines at those 50 dmas (red) with the 20 dmas (blue) curving up sharply to give us support before we feel compelled to go bearish again. Of course, this "rally" has been a lot of low-volume BS – hence the "cashy and cautious" stance. We have had no reason yet to actually go bearish and, since we added most of our long-term longs in early June – we have quite a while before we do become…
by ilene - May 31st, 2010 12:30 pm
Courtesy of John Nyaradi’s Wall Street Sector Selector
As I look across the global landscape today, I see extraordinary danger and extraordinary opportunity.
Danger comes from the deteriorating economic environment at home and abroad and extraordinary opportunity comes from the enormous volatility and opportunities to “short” the market followed by a once in a generation opportunity to “buy dollars for dimes” once a bottom to this market has been reached.
Over the next five years I believe we will see more bankruptcies, both individual and sovereign, than we’ve seen in our history and we’ll also see more millionaires and billionaires created than ever before.
As individuals we will each make one of two choices. We can assume the “deer in the headlights” posture and stash our money under the mattress, or we can educate ourselves, take prudently managed risk and work to take advantage of the enormous opportunities that will present themselves.
Looking at My Screens
This week we saw enormous volatility in every asset class as global forces washed over the markets of the world and investors/traders tried to position themselves on the only side of the market that counts, “the right side.”
The downtrend that started in April is still firmly in place, notwithstanding Thursday’s rally from oversold levels and we remain in the “Red Flag Flying” mode expecting lower prices ahead.
Taking a look at the chart of the S&P 500 we see:
chart courtesy of StockCharts.com
In the chart above, we can see that the S&P remains just below its 200 Day Moving Average which will provide significant resistance while the MACD remains on a sell signal but momentum is turning up. Above the blue 50 Day Moving Average is rolling over and the 200 Day red line is flattening which is also a bearish indicator.
So for the time being, at least, we remain in a bearish configuration, expecting lower prices ahead.
By the way, if you share our view and expectations of lower prices, this week’s mega rally on Thursday presented some extraordinary buying opportunities on the “short” side with relatively low risk at the moment. I’ll be describing these in detail to my subscribers in our Position/Stop Loss Update this weekend.
by ilene - May 29th, 2010 1:20 pm
Credit market turmoil in the Eurozone has ignited frenzied trading on global markets. On Tuesday, shares tumbled nearly 300 points on the Dow Jones before launching an unconvincing 257-point late-day comeback. Wednesday the mayhem continued; all the major indexes seesawed wildly as positive news on durable goods was nixed by reports on wobbly EU banks. Erratic selling pushed the S&P down to 1,067 while the Dow slipped below 10,000 for the first time since February 7. The rise in Libor (the London Interbank Offered Rate) is increasing volatility, a red flag indicating trouble in interbank lending. Banks are wary of each other’s collateral as Greece and other underwater Club Med members appear to be headed for debt-restructuring. Libor is not yet at pre-Lehman levels, but the rate that banks charge each other for short-term loans has rocketed to a 10-month high. Improving economic data have not eased fears of another meltdown or removed the rot at the heart of the system. The banks are still loaded with loans and assets that are losing value. The credit system is breaking down.
When banks post collateral overnight for short-term loans, the collateral is effectively downgraded, limiting the banks’ access to capital. This is what triggered the financial crisis two years ago, a run on repo. Regulated "depository" institutions now rely on a funding system that operates beyond government oversight, a shadow banking system. The banks exchange collateral, in the form of bundled securities and bonds with institutional investors (aka—"shadow banks"; investment banks, hedge funds, insurers) via repurchase agreements (repo) for short-term loans. The repo market now rivals the traditional banking system in terms of size but lacks the guard rails and stop signs that make the regulated system safe. The system is inherently unstable and crisis-prone as a recently released paper by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY) admits. Moody’s rating agency summarized the paper’s findings like this: the tri-party repo market “will remain a major source of systemic risk, especially given the current market volatility and the fact that the Federal Reserve’s primary dealer emergency lending facilities are no longer in place…… the market remains structurally vulnerable to a repo run…… If cash investors pulled away in a stressed environment, the clearing banks would be faced with a choice (as they were several times in 2008)…
by Chart School - May 22nd, 2010 1:41 pm
Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN
There is some alarm being expressed about the recent increase in the TED spread from some quarters this week.
Here is a short term chart of the TED. It is definitely elevated expressing the accelerated demand for dollars in Europe. Although the BIS reports will not catch up with this action for quite a while, I suspect we are seeing a replay of a flight away from dodgy assets such as dollar denominated CDO’s that European customers had deposited with their banks that are now being liquidated again. Also, and undeniably, there is a flight to gold, Swiss francs, and US dollars from the Euro as the ECB and the EMU sort out their serious issues brought about by a single currency and monetary policy working across a wide diversity of localized fiscal conditions.
However, here is the longer term picture of the TED spread. As you can see, it is a bit too early to hit the warning sirens. But it does bear watching.
The long view is not very dramatic, and also not as useful for promoting short euro hedge fund trades, or for generating viewer clicks.
For some additional perspective, here is a chart of the one year LIBOR rate.
Here is a short term view of LIBOR in US Dollars. It is definitely elevated.
But here is a similar short term view of LIBOR expressed in ECU’s. By comparing the two LIBOR charts one might think that there is an elevated demand for dollars, probably attributable to a flight to safety. The DX chart indicates that it seems to be peaking. But it can always take a turn for the worse.
And while we are at it, here is a reprise of a prior discussion of the Fed’s swap lines with Europe, designed to relieve imbalanced demand for dollars.
The US is indeed contributing to the bailout of Greece, via its membership in the IMF. But not through the currency swap lines, unless there is something else going on there behind the scenes. Since the US owns the biggest printing press in the world, at least for now, that would not be a shock.