Archive for 2010

Emerging Markets At A Glance

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

With the US economy expected to drop to third place, behind China and India, with almost virtual certainty, by 2050, emerging markets, especially those that have a positive trade balance with the US, not just BRICs, will play an increasingly important role, especially now that the US trade deficit has become extremely politicized. Attached is a useful snapshot of the key emerging market trends, particularly in the context of waning economic powerhouses such as the US and Japan. As the authors observe: “The overriding common interest of China, India, Russia and the developed world is to find  technological and political solutions to the challenges of energy security, climate change and the rebalancing of global demand. But free trade and free capital flows did not in fact survive the replacement of the UK by the USA as the world’s leading economic power, and this directly contributed to the Great Depression and huge undershoot in global equity returns of the 1930s. History warns that this could happen again, despite a strong common interest in “mutually assured prosperity.” However, this is just another way of saying that it is macro factors rather than micro ones that are most germane to the valuation debate. When people assert that the market is overvalued, they are really expressing their skepticism about the future of US productivity growth and/or the future of globalization. Logically enough, the reverse is also true: if you believe in the potential benefits of accelerating technological change and the dramatic rise of the emerging world, then the next decade for US equities is likely to be a bright one.”

Full report:

 

Attachment Size
Global-Investment-Returns-Yearbook-CSFB.pdf 1.52 MB




Reich Levels Broadside at Greenspan, Rubin, and Summers, and Phony Financial Reform

I posted this article earlier, but now Jesse writes a great intro. – Ilene

Reich Levels Broadside at Greenspan, Rubin, and Summers, and Phony Financial Reform

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

Robert Reich is exactly correct. Back in 1999 I started questioning what Robert Rubin might have said to Alan Greenspan in a private meeting in 1997 to reverse his policy bias after his famous "irrational exuberance" speech and embrace the monetary easing that led to the tech bubble, and to join the fight against regulation, resulting in the repeal of Glass-Steagall in which the Fed was absolutely instrumental.

PBS Frontline – The Warning: The Roots of the Financial Crisis

This was no accident, in my opinion. This was no misplaced belief in ‘the efficient market hypothesis.’ This was not the culmination of the neo-liberal fascination with a mythology of human nature that would make Rousseau blush in its unthinking naiveté. And for Greenspan to say now, I am sorry, I guess I was mistaken, is more prevarication from the master dissembler.

There were plenty of enablers to this financial fraud. There always are many more people who do not act out of principle, or inside involvement and knowledge, but out of their own selfish bias and greed or craven fear that compels them to ‘go with the flow.’

And there is little better example of this than the many people who are even now turning a willful eye away from the blatant government manipulation of the stock and commodity markets, in particular the silver market. They do not wish to believe it, so they ignore it, and even ridicule it depending on how deeply it affects their personal interests. But the overall body of evidence is compelling enough to provoke further investigation, and the refusal to allow audits and independent investigation starts to become an overwhelming sign of a coverup. I am not saying that it is correct, or that I know something, but I am saying to not investigate it thoroughly and to air all the details, is highly suspicious and not in the interests of the truth. I did not know, for example, that Madoff was conducting a Ponzi scheme, but the indications were all there and a simple investigation and disclosure would have revealed the truth, one way or the other.

"Fiat justitia ruat caelum." Let justice be done though the heaven’s fall. This is the principle…
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Betting on the Blind Side

Betting on the Blind Side

By Michael Lewis, appearing in Vanity Fair

Michael Burry always saw the world differently—due, he believed, to the childhood loss of one eye. So when the 32-year-old investor spotted the huge bubble in the subprime-mortgage bond market, in 2004, then created a way to bet against it, he wasn’t surprised that no one understood what he was doing. In an excerpt from his new book, The Big Short, the author charts Burry’s oddball maneuvers, his almost comical dealings with Goldman Sachs and other banks as the market collapsed, and the true reason for his visionary obsession.

Excerpted from The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, by Michael Lewis, to be published this month by W. W. Norton; © 2010 by the author.

In early 2004 a 32-year-old stock-market investor and hedge-fund manager, Michael Burry, immersed himself for the first time in the bond market. He learned all he could about how money got borrowed and lent in America. He didn’t talk to anyone about what became his new obsession; he just sat alone in his office, in San Jose, California, and read books and articles and financial filings. He wanted to know, especially, how subprime-mortgage bonds worked. A giant number of individual loans got piled up into a tower. The top floors got their money back first and so got the highest ratings from Moody’s and S&P, and the lowest interest rate. The low floors got their money back last, suffered the first losses, and got the lowest ratings from Moody’s and S&P. Because they were taking on more risk, the investors in the bottom floors received a higher rate of interest than investors in the top floors. Investors who bought mortgage bonds had to decide in which floor of the tower they wanted to invest, but Michael Burry wasn’t thinking about buying mortgage bonds. He was wondering how he might short, or bet against, subprime-mortgage bonds.  

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Your Cost of Doing Business Is Up 25%…Now Go Hire People

Your Cost of Doing Business Is Up 25%…Now Go Hire People

Courtesy of Joshua M Brown, The Reformed Broker

Twilight Zone territory. Ignored during virtually every phase of the stimulus and bailout episodes, they are now being stomped on as big-ticket government programs flail about for more stones to squeeze blood from.

New York Post:

By one estimate, the effective tax rate on the 26 million small businesses across the country — which in the past have accounted for more than half of the job growth in the US — has jumped to 50 percent from 40 percent, sucking valuable cash from the businesses.

Everything about this is stupid for both parties, as small business is responsible for 40% of the job creation in America.

A quick idea of what these new costs are below:

* An increase of 4.6% in federal taxes from 35% to 39.6% (expiration of Bush tax cuts)

* An increase in capital gains taxes from 15% to 20% (expiration of Bush tax cuts)

* A new tax of 3.85% on investment income, dividends, rents, royalties mandated in the new health care bill

* An increase in the Medicare payroll tax to 2.35% as mandated in the new health care bill

* In states like New Jersey and others, state and municipal taxes have been raised by the average of almost 2%

If you were planning a double dip in the economy deliberately, your plans might look something like the atrocity of new taxes listed above.

Source:

Huge 25% Hike For Small Business Kills Jobs in New York (NYP)  





WILL EMERGING MARKETS LEAD THE MARKET LOWER?

WILL EMERGING MARKETS LEAD THE MARKET LOWER?

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist 

MIT professor Simon Johnson says the next big down leg in the bear market will come from emerging markets:


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Sunday Funnies 2010-04-04: Seasonal Adjustments

Sunday Funnies 2010-04-04: Seasonal Adjustments

Courtesy of Mish

Department Of Labor Spends $40 Billion To Create One Amazing New Job

Inquiring minds are reading Department Of Labor Spends $40 Billion To Create One Amazing New Job.

In an effort to stimulate economic growth and boost the confidence of the American workforce, the federal government has allocated $40 billion to create one unbelievably mind-blowing new job, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis announced Monday.

The position, which will require the selected applicant to relocate to a sprawling, white-sand-beach facility on St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands, will begin immediately after the employee is hired. In addition to a $500,000 annual salary, Solis said that the job also includes 12 weeks of paid vacation, a generous pension, bimonthly bonuses for adequate attendance totaling more than $2 million a year, a company rocket pack, and full health benefits.

"After carefully surveying the current employment landscape, it has become evident that generating a single, incredible new job is the most effective course of action," Solis said. "Rather than place 2 million Americans in unfulfilling, dead-end careers, we feel that giving one citizen the opportunity to contribute to the study of multiple orgasms in a controlled hot-tub environment will ultimately yield the most lasting change."

Solis stressed that the new job will "not be a handout," and that the chosen worker will be expected to put in long hours riding a Jet Ski while taste-testing a variety of new microbrewed craft beers. Though the new employee will not report to an immediate superior, he or she will be required to submit monthly progress reports pertaining to an ongoing trampoline-and-bottle-rockets public works project.

Happy Easter!

Mike "Mish" Shedlock


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Congress Pressures Geithner To Label China A “Currency Manipulator”, Geithner Postpones Action

Congress Pressures Geithner To Label China A "Currency Manipulator," Geithner Postpones Action

Courtesy of Mish

China is back in the forefront of US policy concerns. Here are a number of articles to consider on whether or not China is a currency manipulator, and if so what to do about it.

Geithner Sidesteps Congress

Geithner Delays Currency Report, Urges Flexible Yuan

U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner delayed a scheduled April 15 report to Congress on exchange-rate policies, sidestepping a decision on whether to accuse China of manipulating the value of the yuan.

Geithner in a statement urged China to move toward a more flexible currency and said a series of meetings over the next three months will be “critical” to bringing about policy changes that lead to a stronger and “more balanced” global economy. The delay comes as Chinese President Hu Jintao is scheduled to visit Washington for a nuclear summit April 12-13.

The Treasury chief has faced demands from Congress to label China a currency manipulator for keeping the value of the yuan little changed from about 6.83 to the dollar for almost two years. Geithner is instead betting that China will take steps on its own in the next several months to strengthen its currency, analysts said.

“We are disappointed, but not surprised, by the administration’s decision,” Senator Charles E. Schumer, a New York Democrat, said in an e-mailed statement. “After five years of stonewalling, punctuated by occasional, but halting action by the Chinese, we have lost faith in bilateral negotiations on this issue.”

Schumer, along with four other senators including South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham, last month introduced legislation to require the Treasury to determine if a nation had a currency misaligned with the dollar and make it easier to respond by imposing import duties.

Today’s delay “underscores the urgent need” for Congress to pass such legislation, said Alan Tonelson, research fellow with the U.S. Business and Industry Council, a Washington-based organization representing about 2,000 manufacturing companies.

“There can be no question that attempts to negotiate an end to China’s currency manipulation have failed for eight years and it is long past time for unilateral U.S. responses,” Tonelson said.

“The past few years have proven that denying the problem doesn’t solve anything,” Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa, the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, said in an e- mailed statement. “The Treasury Department


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Greenspan, Summers, and Why the Economy Is So Out of Whack

Greenspan, Summers, and Why the Economy Is So Out of Whack

Courtesy of Robert Reich 

I’m in the “green room” at ABC News, waiting to join a roundtable panel discussion on ABC’s weekly Sunday news program, This Week.

Alan Greenspan is now being interviewed. He says he bore no responsibility for the housing bubble that catapulted the nation into a financial crisis in 2008 because no one could have known about the bubble when he chaired the Fed in the years before it burst. Larry Summers was interviewed just before Greenspan. He said the economy is expanding, that the Administration is doing everything it can to bring jobs back, and that the regulatory reform bills moving on the Hill will prevent another financial crisis.

What?

If any single person is most responsible for the financial crisis, it’s Alan Greenspan. He presided over a Fed that lowered interest rates to zero (adjusted for inflation) but failed to prevent banks from using essentially free money to speculate wildly. You do not have to be a brain surgeon to understand that if money is free, banks will take it and lend it out. And if oversight is inadequate, the banks will lend the money to anyone who can stand up straight and to many who cannot. The result will be a giant subprime lending bubble that will burst. 

If any three people are most responsible for the failure of financial regulation, they are Greenspan, Larry Summers, and my former colleague, Bob Rubin. In 1999 they advised Congress to repeal the Glass-Steagall Act, which since 1933 had separated commercial from investment banking. By 1999, Wall Street was salivating over such a repeal because it wanted to create financial supermarkets that could use commercial deposits to place bets in the financial casino. That would yield the Street trillions. 

At the same time, Greenspan, Summers, and Rubin also quashed the efforts of the Commodity Futures Trading Corporation to regulate derivatives, when its director began to worry that derivative trading already was getting out of control.

Yet Greenspan continues to take no responsibility for what occurred. In the interview he just completed he avoiding saying anything about the failure of the Fed under his watch to adequately oversee the banks, and the absence of sufficient financial regulation to begin with.

I dislike singling out individuals for blame or praise in a political system as…
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William Black: “If The Obama Administration Continues This Way, It’s Going To Have A Record Disaster At The Mid-term Elections”

William Black: "If The Obama Administration Continues This Way, It’s Going To Have A Record Disaster At The Mid-term Elections"

Courtesy of Tyler Durden at Zero Hedge 

In this must watch Real News Network interview with William Black, the outspoken critic of all that is wrong and broken with the current system spares no words to once again denounce the (purposeful) ineffectiveness of the administration, and rightfully predicts that with Obama’s current track record of inactivity in dealing with the corruption and criminality at the nexus of finance and politics, there will be a massive loss for Democrats at the upcoming mid-term elections. In Black’s words: "We knew as soon as we saw Summers and Geithner that the finance side of the administration would be a disaster, but we hoped that political side would be preeminent and say a) this is substantively wrong to continue get in bed with finance and b) it’s terrible politics. The democratic party will be crushed if it does this. The political side has failed to get involved. This is one of those rare things where doing the right thing is really good politics, so support candidates that will actually do the right thing. And if the Obama administration continues this way, it’s going to have a record disaster at the mid-term elections. There’s going to be a massive loss of democratic seats."

Everyone should ask themselves the same rhetorical question that forms the basis of Black’s conclusion: "What would it take if the greatest economic catastrophe in 80 years, if an epidemic of fraud by your top elites, if the corruption of your most senior professionals, in accounting, law, appraisal, rating agencies, isn’t enough to make you fundamentally reconsider and say we are headed along a disastrous path. What will it take, because the next big one will be even worse."

Full five part interview below:

Part 1

Part 2 

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5 

h/t Ian


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William Black: "If The Obama Administration Continues This Way, It's Going To Have A Record Disaster At The Mid-term Elections"

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

In this must watch Real News Network interview with William Black, the outspoken critic of all that is wrong and broken with the current system spares no words to once again denounce the (purposeful) ineffectiveness of the administration, and rightfully predicts that with Obama’s current track record of inactivity in dealing with the corruption and criminality at the nexus of finance and politics, there will be a massive loss for Democrats at the upcoming mid-term elections. In Black’s words: “We knew as soon as we saw Summers and Geithner that the finance side of the administration would be a disaster, but we hoped that political side would be preeminent and say a) this is substantively wrong to continue get in bed with finance and b) it’s terrible politics. The democratic party will be crushed if it does this. The political side has failed to get involved. This is one of those rare things where doing the right thing is really good politics, so support candidates that will actually do the right thing. And if the Obama administration continues this way, it’s going to have a record disaster at the mid-term elections. There’s going to be a massive loss of democratic seats.”

Everyone should ask themselves the same rhetorical question that forms the basis of Black’s conclusion: “What would it take if the greatest economic catastrophe in 80 years, if an epidemic of fraud by your top elites, if the corruption of your most senior professionals, in accounting, law, appraisal, rating agencies, isn’t enough to make you fundamentally reconsider and say we are headed along a disastrous path. What will it take, because the next big one will be even worse.”

Full five part interview below:

Part 1:

 

Part 2:

 

Part 3:



 

Part 4:

 

Part 5:

 

h/t Ian





 
 
 

Zero Hedge

Johns Hopkins, Bristol-Myers Face $1 Billion Suit For Infecting Guatemalan Hookers With Syphilis 

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

A federal judge in Maryland said Johns Hopkins University, pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a top-secret program in the 1940s ran by the US government that injected hundreds of Guatemalans with syphilis, reported Reuters.

Several doctors from Hopkins an...



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Phil's Favorites

This Is The One Chart Every Trader Should Have "Taped To Their Screen"

Courtesy of Zero Hedge

After a year of tapering, the Fed’s balance sheet finally captured the market’s attention during the last three months of 2018.

By the start of the fourth quarter, the Fed had finished raising the caps on monthly roll-off of its balance sheet to the full $50bn per month (peaking at $30bn USTs, $20bn MBS, although on many months the (balance sheet) B/S does not actually shrink by this full amount which depends on the redemption schedule) and by end-Q4 markets also experienced some of the largest volatility and drawdowns in nearly a decade.

As Nomura&...



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ValueWalk

The Competition For Capital Has Made Stocks Cheap

By Michelle Jones. Originally published at ValueWalk.

The new year is upon us, and now is the time many investors look at what 2018 was and prepare for what 2019 might be. Recession jitters are starting to pick back up again, especially now that the full picture of 2018 is in the books. But what if you could pick only one theme for 2018? Jefferies strategist Sean Darby and team have a suggestion which is especially timely given that it appears to mark the end of an era.

StockSnap / PixabayVolatility carries into the new year

This past year was one of extremes, and the markets ended i...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Stock declines did not break 9-year support, says Joe Friday

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

We often hear “Stocks take an escalator up and an elevator down!” No doubt stocks did experience a swift decline from the September highs to the Christmas eve lows. Looks like the “elevator” part of the phrase came true as 2018 was coming to an end.

The first part of the “stocks take an escalator up” seems to still be in play as well despite the swift decline of late.

Joe Friday Just The Facts Ma’am- All of these indices hit long-term rising support on Christmas Eve at each (1), where support held and rallies have followed.

If you find long-term perspectives helpf...



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Digital Currencies

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

 

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

Blockchain technologies can empower people by allowing them more control over their user data. Shutterstock

Courtesy of Ajay Kumar Shrestha, University of Saskatchewan

Blockchain has already proven its huge influence on the financial world with its first application in the form of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. It might not be long before its impact is felt everywhere.

Blockchain is a secure chain of digital records that exist on multiple computers simultaneously so no record can be erased or falsified. The...



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Insider Scoop

Cars.com Explores Strategic Alternatives, Analyst Sees Possible Sale Price Around $30 Per Share

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related 44 Biggest Movers From Yesterday 38 Stocks Moving In Wednesday's Mid-Day Session ...

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Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Jan 13, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

In last week’s recap we asked:  “Has the Fed solved all the market’s problems in 1 speech?”

Thus far the market says yes!  As Guns n Roses preached – all we need is a little “patience”.  Four up days followed by a nominal down day Friday had the market following it’s normal pattern the past nearly 30 years – jumping whenever the Federal Reserve hints (or essentially says outright) it is here for the markets.   And in case you missed it the prior Friday, Chairman Powell came back out Thursday to reiterate the news – so…so… so… patient!

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell reinforced that message Thursday during a discussion at the Economic Club of Washington where he said that the central bank will be “fle...



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Members' Corner

Why Trump Can't Learn

 

Bill Eddy (lawyer, therapist, author) predicted Trump's chaotic presidency based on his high-conflict personality, which was evident years ago. This post, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump even became president, 5 Reasons Trump Can’t Learn. ~ Ilene 

Why Trump Can’t Learn

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore (...



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Biotech

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

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

 

Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Bacteriophage viruses infecting bacterial cells , Bacterial viruses. from www.shutterstock.com

Courtesy of John Bergeron, McGill University

Today, the scientific community is aghast at the prospect of gene editing to create “designer” humans. Gene editing may be of greater consequence than climate change, or even the consequences of unleashing the energy of the atom.

...

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Mapping The Market

Trump: "I Won't Be Here" When It Blows Up

By Jean-Luc

Maybe we should simply try him for treason right now:

Trump on Coming Debt Crisis: ‘I Won’t Be Here’ When It Blows Up

The president thinks the balancing of the nation’s books is going to, ultimately, be a future president’s problem.

By Asawin Suebsaeng and Lachlan Markay, Daily Beast

The friction came to a head in early 2017 when senior officials offered Trump charts and graphics laying out the numbers and showing a “hockey stick” spike in the nationa...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

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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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

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Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

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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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