Archive for September, 2019

CIA Whistleblower’s Attorney: ’60 Minutes’ Federal Protection Story Is Fake News

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

An attorney for the CIA whistleblower at the heart of the Trump-Biden-Ukraine scandal said Sunday that CBS' "60 Minutes" had "completely misinterpreted" a letter to acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire, which the news outlet construed to mean the whistleblower was now under federal protection, according to Politico

On Sunday night, CBS wrote on Twitter: “‘60 Minutes’ has obtained a letter that indicates the government whistleblower who set off the impeachment inquiry of President Trump is under federal protection because they fear for their safety.

Contained within the misinterpreted letter is a statement that the attorneys "appreciate your office's support thus far to activate appropriate resources to ensure (the whistleblower's) safety," which '60 Minutes' construed as federal protection. 

The attorneys noted that President Trump had exacerbated concerns over the whistleblower's safety, after he said "I want to know who’s the person that gave the Whistleblower, who’s the person thatgave the Whistleblower the information, because that’s close to a spy. You know what we used to do in the old days when we were smart? Right? With spies and treason,right? We used to handle them a little differently than we do now."

On Friday, President Trump blasted the whistleblower over Twitter, saying "Sounding more and more like the so-called Whistleblower isn’t a Whistleblower at all," adding "In addition, all second hand information that proved to be so inaccurate that there may not have even been somebody else, a leaker or spy, feeding it to him

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Chicago PMI Re-Slumps Back Into Contraction

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Despite hope that August's bounce back into expansion would continue, September saw the key survey slump back into contraction (47.1 vs 50.0 exp) for the 3rd month in the last four…

Source: Bloomberg

This was at the very low end of the forecast range (47 – 52.2 from 27 economists surveyed).

Under the hood, things were not pretty:

  • Prices paid rose at a slower pace, signaling expansion

  • New orders fell and the direction reversed, signaling contraction

  • Employment fell at a slower pace, signaling contraction

  • Inventories fell at a faster pace, signaling contraction

  • Supplier deliveries rose at a faster pace, signaling expansion

  • Production fell at a faster pace, signaling contraction

  • Order backlogs fell and the direction reversed, signaling contraction

Getback to work Mr.Powell!


WeWork Bonds Plunge As Company Officially Pulls IPO Filing

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

From WeWork Co-CEOs:

"We have decided to postpone our IPO to focus on our core business, the fundamentals of which remain strong."

And the reaction was swift with bond prices tumbling to record lows (and the cost of funding for the real estate middle man to record highs)…

Source: Bloomberg

Full Press Release:

WeWork will file a request to withdraw the Registration Statement on Form S-1 that was initially filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on August 14.

Co-CEOs Artie Minson and Sebastian Gunningham said, “We have decided to postpone our IPO to focus on our core business, the fundamentals of which remain strong. We are as committed as ever to serving our members, enterprise customers, landlord partners, employees and shareholders. We have every intention to operate WeWork as a public company and look forward to revisiting the public equity markets in the future.”

We suggest something about the "core" is anything but "remaining strong"…

Focus indeed. As a reminder, we noted that WeWork only has a few months left

….getting new capital is critical: as shown in the chart above, the company lost $690 million in the first six months and is expected to generate a loss from operations approaching $3 billion as it burns through tens of millions in cash daily. Which means that according to analyst estimates, with its existing $2.5 billion in cash as of June 30, the company could run out of money by mid-2020.

Such numbers could spell the end to Neumann’s profit-less growth ethos. When Fitch Ratings downgraded the company’s debt in August, it said the company had made a choice to prioritize growth over profitability by planning for more than 1.25 million new desks — more than twice what’s currently available — and plans to open in 175 new cities globally.

Worse; for next year alone WeWork had planned to add 725,000 new desks at a cost of about $4.5 billion, S&P Global Ratings has estimated.

However, without the news cash it will simply

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Green Shoots: China’s Caixin Mfg PMI Expands Fastest In 19 Months, But Doubts Remain

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

What a coincidence: economic green shoots appeared in China just in time for the start of the country's National Day and Golden Week holidays, as both the official and Caixin manufacturing PMIs rose in September.

Specifically, the NBS manufacturing PMI increased to 49.8 in September and the Caixin manufacturing PMI rose to 51.4, with both readings coming in above expectations. Sub-indexes in the two surveys all pointed to stronger production, new orders and higher price pressures in the manufacturing sector. In contrast, the NBS non-manufacturing PMI edged down 0.1pp on the back of a weaker construction PMI.

China's Caixin manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index, published on Monday, and which unlike the official PMI is a measurement of economic activity at smaller, privately-owned companies, showed China's factory activity expanded at the fastest pace in 19 months in Sept., with a reading of 51.4, up from 50.4 in Aug., the highest level since early 2018.

And while China's official manufacturing PMI contracted for a fifth month in Sept, amid the ongoing threats of a China-US trade war, it printed slightly higher to 49.8, from 49.5 in Aug., if still below the 50-level that separates it from contraction and expansion.

While there are conflicting signals of an economic rebound in China, and goalseeked number meant for political consumption will hardly change the narrative, manufacturers continue to deal with slowing domestic growth and an escalating trade war that has slowed global trade volumes. Trade talks between Washington and Beijing are expected to resume next week despite President Trump consideration to delist Chinese firms from US markets.

Meanwhile, economists don't expect the slight manufacturing rebound in China to sustain into late year, but rather turn back down. 

"We believe the official manufacturing PMI may decline again, the growth slowdown could gather pace and (financial)markets could become more volatile in coming months," economists at Nomura said.

To be sure, Nomura revised its 3Q19 growth forecast for China to 5.9% and its 4Q19 view to 5.8%, decreasing from the 6.2% forecast in 2Q19. The note cited escalating trade war, slowing industrial production,

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The Real ‘Inconvenient Truth’ – Exposing The Wall Street “Beats” Con

Courtesy of Lance Roberts,

Earnings results for the third quarter is fast approaching, and investors are getting excited for the “beat the estimate” game where Wall Street continually lowers estimates so companies can beat them. As I noted previously:

One of the reasons given for the push to new highs was the ‘better than expected’ earnings reports coming in. As noted by FactSet: 

“78% have reported actual EPS above the mean EPS estimate…The percentage of companies reporting EPS above the mean EPS estimate is above the 1-year (76%) average and above the 5-year (72%) average.”

The problem is the “beat rate” was simply due to the consistent ‘lowering of the bar’ as shown in the chart below:

Beginning in mid-October last year, estimates for both 2019 and 2020 crashed. 

This is why I call it ‘Millennial Soccer.’ 

Earnings season is now a ‘game’ where scores aren’t kept, the media cheers, and everyone gets a ‘participation trophy’ just for showing up.

You also can’t turn on financial television, or read a financial website, without the continual droning from a Wall Street analyst about why the markets are destined to go higher, or why you should be buying XYZ stock.

The mainstream press, most financial advisers, and the average investor, unfortunately take this information as “fact,” and use it as a basis for portfolio investment decisions.

But why wouldn’t you? After all, Carl Gugasian of Dewey, Cheatham & Howe just rated Bianchi Corp. a “Strong Buy.” That rating is surely something that you can “take to the bank,” right?

Maybe not.

For many years, I have counseled individuals to disregard mainstream analysts, Wall Street recommendations, and even MorningStar ratings, due to the inherent conflict of interest between the firms and their particular clientèle. Here is the point:

  • YOU, are NOT Wall Street’s client.
  • YOU are the CONSUMER of the products sold FOR Wall Street’s clients.

Major brokerage firms are big business. I mean REALLY big business. As in $1.8 Trillion a year in revenue big. The table below shows the annual revenue of 40 of the largest financial

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There Goes The Second Tech Bubble: 2019 Set To Be The Worst Year For IPOs In History

Courtesy of ZeroHedge

Much has been said about the devastating impact that WeWork's catastrophic failed IPO has had on capital market sentiment, and one needs look no further than the performance of the latest dismal IPO attempt, that of glorified stationary bike with an iPad superglued to it, Peloton, also known as WeBike, to see how profound the investor carnage has been.

Yet while we discussed extensively the post-WeWork pain spreading across the IPO world – as markets are finally "emerging from a psychotic break with reality" in Scott Galloway's inimitable words – in "Buyer Beware: Peloton IPO Crash Tells Us The Global IPO Market Is Going Bust", Goldman has what may be the definitive verdict on just how bad for IPOs 2019 is shaping up to be.

As the following chart shows from Goldman's David Kostin, the median IPO in 2019 is now drastically underperforming the Russell 3000 relative to history; in fact, the roughly 3% underperformance is the worst on record, and surpasses the negative returns observed at the peak of the financial crisis in 2009 and in the aftermath of the bursting of the first dot com bubble.

Tangentially related to this, Saxo Bank's Peter Garnry writes that the second largest US industry group, Software & Services, is now valued in the 99% percentile on EV/EBITDA; "not a good recipe for future returns." As Garnry notes, "we often just talk about valuations as something abstract but one has to realize that EV/EBITDA just above 20x means an implied return expectation by investors of around 4.8%", which prompts him to ask "is that really a fair hurdle rate to expect for your capital given where we are in the business cycle? Our view is that valuations on software companies have reached unsustainable levels given the outlook and the risk-reward ratio is just terrible."

So is the party finally over, and did the messianic, and now former, WeWork CEO, Adam Neumann, burst the biggest asset bubble of all time? For now the answer is unclear, but as Morgan Stanley's Michael Wilson wrote on Sunday, the recent failure of We Company to go

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Platts: 4 Commodity Charts To Watch This Week

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Via S&P Global Platt's 'The Barrel' blog,

Asian demand for light crude oil grades and record US gas exports to Mexico are in the sights of S&P Global Platts editors this week. Plus, European gas price trends and the prospects for German power plant fuel switching.

1. Asian crude buying helps widen spread between light and heavy grades

What’s happening? Asia was quick to respond to the growing uncertainty over Arab Light and Arab Extra Light crude supplies following the September 14 attacks on core Saudi oil facilities, with Southeast Asian refiners among the first group of buyers to secure alternative light oil cargoes from the spot market. The apparent shortage in supply of light Saudi crude to Asian refiners has boosted demand for distillate-rich grades in the global spot market. As a result, the outright price spread between Murban crude and Iraq’s heavy sour Basrah Heavy staged a sharp rebound this week, settling at $4.60/b Friday, Platts data showed, having touched a record low of $2.35/b on August 19.

What’s next? The rise in Asian buying activity potentially sets the tone for light/heavy sour crude price spreads to widen in the short run – how long exactly depends on how fast Aramco can fully restore production from the damage. In addition, the spread between the official selling price of Arab Extra Light and Arab Heavy could widen in the coming months if Chinese end-users continue to face a shortage of lighter-end Saudi term crude supply, according to multiple refinery and trade sources surveyed by Platts.

2. US exports record gas volumes to Mexico as pipeline availability rises

What’s happening? US natural gas pipeline exports to Mexico climbed to a record high last week propelled by the recent addition of new transmission capacity on the 2.6 Bcf/d Sur de Texas-Tuxpan marine pipeline. However, the record 6 Bcf/d export figure came not from an increase in exports on Sur de Texas, but rather from a recovery in transmission volumes on other southbound pipelines. The recent growth in US export volumes to Mexico has bolstered South Texas gas prices and could be a contributing factor behind the recent

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Brexit “Surrender” Strategy: Winning Ugly

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by Michael Shedlock via MishTalk,

Boris Johnson and his political strategist Dominic Cummings have labeled the efforts by Parliament a "Surrender" act…

Surrender Act

Boris Johnson labels the acts of Parliament to stop No Deal a "Surrender Act".

This is correct, of course.

If you take away the EU's incentives to negotiate, they are less likely to do so.

It's not a complete white flag as Johnson has other, albeit undisclosed options, in which he proclaims two seemingly contradictory ideas.

  1. He will abide by the Benn legislation seeking an extension

  2. He will not ask for an extension

Incite Violence

As noted by the Guardian Live blog, Amber Rudd says Boris Johnson's language 'Does Incite Violence'

The claim is preposterous.

The Labour MP Jess Phillips says she has received more threats after an incident outside her constituency office on Thursday when a man allegedly tried to smash her windows. She showed Sky News a message that said: “Unless you change your attitude, be afraid, be very afraid.”

The Labour MP David Lammy has criticised the columnist Brendan O’Neill after he said on BBC Politics Live that the delay to Brexit should have sparked riots. It came after the Times quoted an unnamed senior cabinet minister today who warned the country risked a “violent, popular uprising” if a second referendum overturned the result of the first.

Why Violence Picked Up

Violence has picked up, but "surrender" has little to do with it.

Rather, it's the very nature of this heated campaign, fueled mostly by Remainers, commentators, and even official Labour Party policy that had led to violence.

Scrap Controls on Immigration

Please note Labour to Scrap Controls on Immigration and Hand Foreign Nationals the Right to Vote

Jeremy Corbyn will scrap controls on immigration and hand foreign nationals the right to vote in future elections and referendums if Labour wins power.

The Labour leader will head into the next election

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Frightening Videos Surface Of Tesla’s “Smart” Summon Feature

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

With Tesla releasing V10 of its vehicle software earlier this week, owners were chomping at the bit to get their hands on the long touted "Smart Summon" feature, which is supposed to allow drivers to summon their vehicles to them in parking lots using their cell phones. 

But, as things go with Tesla, the idea of the idea was worlds away from the actual implementation of it. In fact, early customer videos and reports of the "feature" are making Smart Summon look extremely dangerous and nothing short of a complete disaster. 

As soon as the software update pushed to drivers, videos began popping up on social media showing a litany of negative consequences of everyday users beta testing Smart Summon in real life. 

Tesla says that with Smart Summon "customers who have purchased Full Self-Driving Capability or Enhanced Autopilot can enable their car to navigate a parking lot and come to them or their destination of choice, as long as their car is within their line of sight. It’s the perfect feature to use if you have an overflowing shopping cart, are dealing with a fussy child, or simply don’t want to walk to your car through the rain."

Tesla claims that "customers who have had early access to Smart Summon have told us that it adds both convenience to their trips and provides them with a unique moment of delight when their car picks them up to begin their journey."

Let's compare Tesla's description of the feature with the real world results.

First, there's this video of another vehicle backing into a Model 3 while it was being summoned in a crowded parking lot. 

Then there is exceptionally alarming video where a driverless Tesla pulls across a lane of live traffic, forcing another driver

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MbS: War With Iran Would Send Oil To Highs “That We Haven’t Seen In Our Lifetimes”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

In an interview that aired just days before the one-year anniversary of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's disappearance and presumed murder, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman sat for an interview with 60 Minutes – reportedly the most extensive interview he has ever given to a Western media outlet.

During the nearly 15-minute discussion with '60 Minutes' correspondent Norah O'Donnell (in an interview that, fittingly, was aired during '60 Minutes' 52nd season premier), MbS addressed every controversy afflicting his regime: tensions with Iran and the recent attacks on Abqaiq, the murder of Khashoggi, MbS's hopes for peace in Yemen and the arrest of female activists despite MbS's landmark gender reforms like granting women the right to drive.

The two issues from the interview that garnered the most attention were MbS's insistence that he wasn't aware of the plot to kill Khashoggi (but that he 'accepts responsibility', as a leader should), and the disruption in global oil supplies – triggering a spike in global prices – that could result from a war with Iran (just look at how global benchmarks responded to the attack on Abqaiq, with the largest one-day spike since Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait).

Asked point-blank whether he ordered Khashoggi's murder, MbS replied "absolutely not" and described the attack as a "heinous crime" (all via a translator).

"Absolutely not. This was a heinous crime. But I take full responsibility as a leader in Saudi Arabia, especially since it was committed by individuals working for the Saudi government."

When pressed about how he could've been unaware of a mission in which some of his closest associates participated, MbS insisted that it would be 'impossible' for him to monitor what KSA's 3 million government employees do on a daily basis.

"Some think that I should know what three million people working for the Saudi government do daily? It's impossible that the three million would send their daily reports to the leader or the second highest person in the Saudi government."

Moving on, O'Donnell had a few questions about the attack on Abqaiq, which briefly took 5.5% of global oil production offline. She asked

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Zero Hedge

Why Is Maduro Still Pushing The Petro?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by William Luther via The American Institute for Economic Research,

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Mary Anastasia O’Grady writes that Venezuela’s “National Superintendency for the Defense of Socio-Economic Rights is reportedly pressuring stores to accept the government’s new digital fiat currency, the petro.” The Venezuelan government claims its digital...

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The Technical Traders

Is The Technology Sector Setting Up For A Crash? Part IV

Courtesy of Technical Traders

As we continue to get more and more information related to the Coronavirus spreading across Asia and Europe, the one thing we really must consider is the longer-term possibility that major global economies may contract in some manner as the Chinese economy is currently doing.  The news suggests over 700+ million people in China are quarantined.  This is a staggering number of people – nearly double the total population of the entire United States.

If the numbers presented by the Chinese are accurate, the Coronavirus has a very high infection rate, yet a moderately small mortality rate (2~3%).  Still, if this virus continues to spread throughout the world and infects m...

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Phil's Favorites

Why Trump's post-impeachment actions are about vengeance, not retribution


Why Trump's post-impeachment actions are about vengeance, not retribution

President Trump fired Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman for testifying in his impeachment trial. AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File

Courtesy of Austin Sarat, Amherst College

Since the end of his Senate impeachment trial, President Donald Trump has carried out a concerted campaign against ...

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Biotech & Health

Deep learning AI discovers surprising new antibiotics


Deep learning AI discovers surprising new antibiotics

A colored electron microscope image of MRSA. NIH - NIAID/flickr, CC BY

Courtesy of Sriram Chandrasekaran, University of Michigan

Imagine you’re a fossil hunter. You spend months in the heat of Arizona digging up bones only to find that what you’ve uncovered is from a previously discovered dinosaur.

That’s how the search for antibiotics has panned out recently. The relatively few antibiotic hunters out there ...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

King Dollar Going To Lose Strength Here? Gold & Silver Hope So!!!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Is King$ and the Euro facing important breakout/breakdown tests at the same time? It looks like it in this chart!

The US$ trend remains up, as it has created a series of higher lows since the start of 2018. The opposite can be said for the Euro, as it has created a series of lower highs since early 2018.

The US$ is currently testing the top of its 18-month rising channel, as the Euro is testing the bottom of its falling channel.

What King$ and...

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Insider Scoop

The Daily Biotech Pulse: Heron Pain Drug Review Extended, Disappointment For Teva In Tourette Syndrome Study

Courtesy of Benzinga

Here's a roundup of top developments in the biotech space over the last 24 hours.

Scaling The Peaks

(Biotech Stocks Hitting 52-week highs on Feb. 19)

  • Adverum Biotechnologies Inc (NASDAQ: ADVM)
  • Akebia Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: AKBA)
  • Ana... more from Insider

Digital Currencies

Altcoin season 2.0: why bitcoin has been outgunned by crypto rivals since new year


Altcoin season 2.0: why bitcoin has been outgunned by crypto rivals since new year

‘We have you surrounded!’ Wit Olszewski

Courtesy of Gavin Brown, Manchester Metropolitan University and Richard Whittle, Manchester Metropolitan University

When bitcoin was trading at the dizzying heights of almost US$2...

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What US companies are saying about coronavirus impact

By Aman Jain. Originally published at ValueWalk.

With the coronavirus outbreak coinciding with the U.S. earnings seasons, it is only normal to expect companies to talk about this deadly virus in their earnings conference calls. In fact, many major U.S. companies not only talked about coronavirus, but also warned about its potential impact on their financial numbers.

Q4 2019 hedge fund letters, conferences and more

Coronavirus impact: many US companies unclear

According to ...

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Chart School

RTT browsing latest..

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Please review a collection of WWW browsing results. The information here is delayed by a few months, members get the most recent content.

Date Found: Tuesday, 01 October 2019, 02:18:22 AM

Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.

Comment: Wall of worry, or cliff of despair!

Date Found: Tuesday, 01 October 2019, 06:54:30 AM

Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.

Comment: Interesting.. Hitler good for the German DAX when he was winning! They believed .. until th...

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Members' Corner

How to Stop Bill Barr


How to Stop Bill Barr

We must remove this cancer on our democracy.

Courtesy of Greg Olear, at PREVAIL, author of Dirty Rubles: An Introduction to Trump/Russia


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Lee's Free Thinking

Why Blaming the Repo Market is Like Blaming the Australian Bush Fires


Why Blaming the Repo Market is Like Blaming the Australian Bush Fires

Courtesy of  

The repo market problem isn’t the problem. It’s a sideshow, a diversion, and a joke. It’s a symptom of the problem.

Today, I got a note from Liquidity Trader subscriber David, a professional investor, and it got me to thinking. Here’s what David wrote:


The ‘experts’ I hear from keep saying that once 300B more in reserves have ...

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Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:


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Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"



Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

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.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:


·       How 2017 Will Affect Oil, the US Dollar and the European Union


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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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