Author Archive for Zero Hedge

TikTok Files New Injunction Against White House Amid Reports Deal Is “Falling Apart”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

As Fox Business publishes rumors that the TikTok-Oracle deal is falling apart, TikTok-owner ByteDance has filed a petition for an injunction Wednesday afternoon, asking a federal court in Washington DC to intervene and quash President Trump's threatened ban of TikTok on national security grounds.

The injunction, filed Wednesday afternoon, comes after a California court shut down Trump's attempt to ban Tencent's WeChat just a few days ago. It follows another lawsuit filed by TikTok and its parent back in August targeting the administration and its leaders, including Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

The Trump Administration set a final deadline of Nov. 12 for the deal between ByteDance, Oracle and Wal-Mart to spin off TikTok into a standalone company. It also set an earlier deadline of Sept. 28, whereby a 'partial' shutdown was promised if the deal isn't well on its way. With that first intermediate deadline coming up on Sunday, BD has apparently decided to move ahead

In the complaint, TikTok lawyers from Covington & Burling argued that Trump's executive order is unconstitutional, citing violations of First Amendment Rights and due process.

TikTok Requests Injunction on Trump Ban by Zerohedge on Scribd

Meanwhile, Fox Business reports that opposition to the deal is growing in the US, as AG Barr has reportedly expressed skepticism about approving the deal over "national security" concerns.

To be sure, even if the Trump Administration were to completely roll over and accept a deal with ByteDance owning 80% of the newly independent TikTok (with 40% of that stake presumably owned indirectly by the American investors who own ByteDance), Beijing has by now spilled too much ink in its state-run press. The hard-core nationalists would never accept President Xi kowtowing to Washington like this.





Airlines Beg To Relax Quarantine Rules, Support Mandatory Testing Instead, In Push To Spur Demand

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Airlines desperate to jumpstart business are pleading for universal coronavirus testing for departing passengers, according to the International Air Transport Association. 

They believe that the 100% adoption of rapid antigen tests could be the key to removing quarantines and getting more passengers flying again, according to Bloomberg. Currently, quarantine restrictions are what is "killing" the travel market, according to IATA chief Alexandre de Juniac.

Heading into the fall, names like Lufthansa and Air France have warned of continued layoffs, removal of planes from their fleets and abbreviated flight schedules. 

The industry continues to seek a unified global solution to air travel that it believes will get people in the skies again, but make complying with regulations easier for airlines. The IATA will make its case to the United Nations-mandated International Civil Aviation Organization. 

de Juniac says all of its members unanimously support the changes and that the industry's travel regulations are what is stifling travel numbers moreso than the virus. 

The tests proposed would cost as little as $10 and can be performed by any staff. They would deliver results in 15 minutes with a 97% sensitivity rate. de Juniac suggests governments should fund the testing.

The call comes as airline traffic showed "little improvement" heading out of the summer and into the fall. The airline industry is widely expected to see consolidation as a result of its contraction.

Willie Walsh, the former CEO of British Airways concluded: “It’s going to be a smaller industry five years from now. There will be fewer players.”





Dollarnado Slams Stocks, Gold, & Silver As Election Angst Spreads

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Anxiety over the election (and any thoughts of fiscal stimulus) continues to rise…

Source: Bloomberg

Quite a serious shift in risk perceptions around the election over the last month and week…

Source: Bloomberg

Which matched with very heavy FedSpeak today with most bearish on growth without more fiscal stimulus (messaging was clear!):

  • Chair Powell continued to wave the fiscal flag carefully at another hearing today, saying that more support was likely to be necessary.

  • Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester saying fiscal stimulus was very much needed given the “deep hole” the economy is climbing out of.

  • Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren suggested it'll take another wave of infections to prompt action, and likely not until next year: "The most difficult part of the recovery is still ahead of us."

  • Chicago Fed President Evans desperately tried to walk back his more hawkish comments (on hiking rates below 2% inflation) but was ignored.

  • And finally, Fed Vice Chair Richard Clarida, in an interview on Bloomberg Television, emphasized the recovery has so far been stronger than officials predicted a few months ago. He also made clear the road ahead will be difficult and repeated the theme that fiscal support would help.

And tomorrow is another shitshow of FedSpeak…

Is the stock market's drop a message to Washington? "Get back to work?"

Things could have been a lot uglier as NKE's surge added 60pts to The Dow.

The Dow dumped 800 points from intraday highs…

The timing of the plunge this afternoon syncs up almost too well with margin-calls. Today's selling accelerated right around 1430ET…

Source: Bloomberg

That is the biggest flush since June…

Source: Bloomberg

The S&P 500 is almost back to


continue reading





The Big Short’s Michael Burry Targets Tesla In Series Of Tweets

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Could Tesla be The Big Short 2.0?

In a series of Tweets that started early Monday morning, Michael Burry, M.D. – of “The Big Short” fame – appears to have a healthy and growing skepticism of Tesla brewing.

Burry started Tweeting about Tesla in the hours leading up to the company’s “Battery Day”, which we now know was nothing short of a farce and was responsible for driving Tesla stock lower by 12% in Tuesday’s after hours session. 

On Monday, Burry pointed out how absurd Tesla’s valuation was when compared to the rest of the industry. He posted a screenshot of the company’s valuation versus its peers and pointed out that it trades for 18x sales when the rest of the global auto industry trades for about 0.35x sales. 

He followed that up Monday afternoon by posting several charts from an FT piece that show the company’s sale of regulatory credits was necessary for profitability.

He also pointed out the company’s flat revenues and Tesla’s “inferior lithium iron phosphate tech” while appending the Tweet with the hashtag #bubbles.

Since those Tweets, “Battery Day” largely failed to impress and Tesla stock is about 25% off of its recent highs. Tesla has mangled short sellers that have gotten in its way over the last 18 months and the stock has had some of the highest – albeit mysterious – returns on Wall Street. But, to quote Burry in The Big Short:

“Well, based on prevailing sentiment, the market, the banks and popular culture, yes, it’s a foolish investment. But, everyone’s wrong.”





Trump Unveils New Cuba Sanctions (On Alcohol & Tobacco) In “Fight Against Communist Oppression”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

The trade restrictions against Cuba have been prolonged for another year, with President Trump citing "the national interest of the United States" on Wednesday. Specifically the ban on Cuban imports of tobacco and alcohol have been extended, and the tourism industry has been targeted.

Trump said at a mid-morning White House event:

"Today, as part of our continuing fight against communist oppression, I am announcing that the Treasury Department will prohibit US travellers from staying at properties owned by the Cuban government. We're also further restricting the importation of alcohol and Cuban tobacco."

This comes after Trump's reversing Obama-era relaxation of historic Cold War era sanctions on the communist-run island.

The president unveiled the sanctions during a speech recognizing Bay of Pigs Veterans hosted at the White House. “These actions will ensure that U.S. dollars do not fund the Cuban regime and go directly to the Cuban people,” he said.

Trump framed the measures as part of the “continuing fight against communist oppression.”

Since coming to office Trump has ramped up economic pressures on Havana, including sanctioning specific officials, related also to 'illicit' sanctions-busting cooperation with Maduro's Venezuela. 

Cuban cigars file image via Pretend Magazine


 

Many people might be thinking, however… why always target the good stuff like Cuban cigars? 

Of course, tobacco remains Cuba's number one export, accounting for just over 20% of the country's global exports in 2019, at an estimated $332.9 million.





Collapse Is A Process, Not An Event

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by Chris Martenson via PeakProsperity.com,

How does one ‘get ahead’ during hard times?

Look, I’m a systems guy.  I think in systems terms.  You should as well.

Why?

Because we’re entering a period of time when the major systems that have supported humanity are going to fail.

Or, put more accurately: they are already failing.

As just one example, our monetary system delivers outsized gains to the already stupendously-wealthy while piling up massive debts on the backs of we citizens, both born and yet-to-be-born.  The US Federal Reserve is the unelected and unaccountable body that is most responsible for have made America’s billionaires nearly $1 trillion ‘richer’ since the pandemic hit.

These next three Fed-related data points are, in a word, obscene.

The first shows that the US Federal Reserve now “owns” more US federal debt than all foreign central banks. The second shows how billionaires are getting grotesquely wealthier from the Fed’s “rescue'” efforts. And the last shows how the Fed’s record-low interest policy has resulted in an explosion in federal debt:

(Source)

(Source)

This is obscene (and infuriating!) to anyone who cares about the future.  Leaving aside the morality issues for a moment, we can at least conclude that the behaviors and values on display are thoroughly unsustainable.

Eventually spending more money than you have ends in ruin.

Speaking of spending what you don’t have, a similar story can be told about ecological overshoot and humanity’s extractive practices —  it’s akin to spending both the entirety of the interest income as well as some principal each year from our environmental trust fund.

There aren’t many resources that one can point to which aren’t in some serious form of either concerning decline or depletion, or both.  Already thousands, if not millions, of people in the American West are considering relocating because of the ever-present danger of disruptive if not life-threatening fires:

The climate refugees are here. They’re Americans.


continue reading





UBS CEO Joins JPMorgan In Push For ‘A Return To The Office’ For Staff

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

It was just a couple of days ago that we reported that J.P. Morgan was one of the first investment banks on Wall Street to consider bringing its employees back to work. JPM had said that employees lose "creative energy" when working from home.

Now, UBS could be joining the chorus of bank executives that appear to be ready to re-open. Chief Executive Officer Sergio Ermotti said at a Bank of America conference on Tuesday that it's difficult for banks to "create and sustain cohesiveness and a culture when employees are working from home," according to BNN.

He said that for UBS, 20% to 30% of employees will be working from home and that an 85% rate is "non sustainable" for banks.

UBS employs a total of nearly 70,000 employees over 50 countries and has had about 80% of its staff working from home since the coronavirus pandemic began. The bank's Chief Operating Officer, Sabine Keller-Busse, had said earlier this year that up to 33% of the bank's employees might wind up working remotely on a permanent basis.

There was no confirmation that the bank had yet recalled additional workers back to their respective offices. 

Recall, just days after J.P. Morgan suggested its employees come back to work, the firm was hit with a Covid outbreak and was forced to upend its plans. This left this CEO Jamie Dimon with some egg on his face after he personally signed off on the bank's opposition to work from home.





Market Turmoil Leads To First Pulled Junk Bond Deal Since July

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Two weeks ago, when we noticed that for the entire month of August the Fed had not bought a single bond ETF, we asked if Powell was sending the markets a message. Now, with the S&P500 on the verge of a correction, the Nasdaq down 12% from its recent all time high, and traders realizing that the shift in risk sentiment is getting worse by the Fed, the answer appears to be yes.

And while stocks today suffered their worst drop since June, the turmoil in equities is starting to spread culminating in Aethon United BR, a Texas-based natural gas company, postponing a $700 million high-yield bond sale that would have refinanced existing debt. The deal – which comes at a time when junk-rated companies have been binging on debt like never before thanks to the Fed's pledge to backstop corporate bond markets – was the first to be yanked from the U.S. high-yield bond market since July, when Diamond Resorts pulled a $525 million offering, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Yet while buying sentiment across the corporate bond market has certainly eased back in recent days, issuance of junk-rated securities is on track to break an all-time record on Wednesday. According to Bank of America, through last Friday, HY gross issuance was $321 billion and about to break its all-time full-year issuance record of $322 billion set in 2012 (BofA's forecast remains at $375bn for the FY 2020, which would leave us at 1.2x of previous record, with a risk of further upside).

The picture is even more dramatic in net issuance terms, which we define as the difference between gross issuance and calls/tenders/maturities. So far in 2020, the net issuance has reached $119bn, already breaching the previous all-time full-year record of $94bn set in the same year 2012. For the FY 2020 we are projecting net issuance at $145bn, which would represent 1.5x of the previous record, if materialized.

A recent credit market survey from Bank of America found that net overweight positioning in Investment Grade remains elevated at 63% in the September survey, while high yield net positioning increased to a net 44% overweight in September from a net 27% underweight in July and the highest


continue reading





39 States Don’t Have Enough Money To Pay Their Bills

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Via SchiffGold.com,

It’s not just the federal government running massive deficits and piling up enormous levels of debt. Thirty-nine US states don’t have enough money to pay all of their bills.

That was the grim conclusion of Truth in Accounting’s annual Financial State of the States report.

The report summarizes a comprehensive analysis surveying the fiscal health of the 50 states prior to the coronavirus pandemic.

Total debt for all states combined totaled $1.4 trillion at the end of fiscal 2019. This does not include debt related to capital assets.

"Most of the states were ill-prepared for any crisis, much less one as serious as what we are currently facing.”

Ironically, 49 states require balanced budgets by law. As the report explains, “This means that to balance the budget … elected officials have not included the true costs of the government in their budget calculations and have pushed costs onto future taxpayers.”

The vast majority of state debt comes from unfunded retirement benefit obligations. This includes pension plans and retiree healthcare liabilities. Pension debt accounts for $855 billion and other post-employment benefits (OPEB) totaled $617 billion at the end of FY 2019.

The coronavirus pandemic and the accompanying government-imposed economic shutdowns have only exacerbated financial problems at the state level. The report estimates the 50 states could lose $397 billion in revenue.

These numbers pale compared to the debt being piled up by the federal government. But Uncle Sam has access to the Federal Reserve’s printing press and can create money out of thin air to backstop its borrowing and spending. States don’t have that option. They have to rely on accounting tricks and ultimately federal bailouts to fill their gaping budget holes. The surging levels of state debt will probably end up piled on top of the national debt.

The Financial State of the States report ranks the states by their fiscal health based on taxpayer burden. This is the amount of money each taxpayer in the state would have to pay if the state were to pay off all of its accumulated debt. (Conversely, how much


continue reading





Goldman Expects Treasury Yields To Surge If Democrats Sweep In November

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Over the weekend we reported that in its latest "hot take" on possible election outcomes, Goldman's FX team concluded that a Biden win and Democratic sweep on Nov 3 would "accelerate" dollar weakness, for three reasons:

  • First, Biden’s proposals to raise the US corporate tax rate would make domestic stocks less attractive compared to international markets, all else equal, which could result in Dollar selling if US equities underperform. Regulatory changes, especially anything targeting the technology sector, could have similar effects.

  • Second, a large fiscal stimulus would also likely weaken the Dollar, due to the Fed’s commitment to keep rates low. Normally currencies appreciate after fiscal stimulus, because it lifts rates, and higher rates in turn attract portfolio inflows from abroad. But academic research finds that currencies depreciate after fiscal expansions when unemployment is high and/or central bank policy rates are stuck at their effective lower bound.

  • Third, a more multilateral approach to foreign affairs should reduce risk premium in certain currencies, especially the Chinese Yuan. Goldman recently lowered its 12m target for USD/CNH to 6.50 for this reason: a Biden Administration would likely imply lower trade war risks, and therefore should allow the Chinese currency to gain alongside broad Dollar weakness.

Furthermore, having initially warned that a Biden win would likely be negative for stocks due to the prospect of higher corporate taxes from a Democratic sweep, only to caveat this forecast by saying that a "larger fiscal stimulus and of more predictability in trade policy" could actually push higher, it meant that Goldman still had to opine what Treasurys would do under a Biden administration, and alternatively, what would happen if the "worst-case scenario" for markets, a lengthy contested election struck.

It did so this morning when the bank's rates strategist Praveen Korapaty wrote that "upcoming US elections will likely be a catalyst for interest rate repricing." He first looks at an outcome where the results are contested or delayed for an extended period, in which case Goldman "could see yields decline from current levels, potentially towards previous lows (50bp for10y USTs) in the event that risk sentiment turns substantially negative." Some more details on this scenario:

Delayed results or


continue reading





 
 
 

Zero Hedge

TikTok Files New Injunction Against White House Amid Reports Deal Is "Falling Apart"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

As Fox Business publishes rumors that the TikTok-Oracle deal is falling apart, TikTok-owner ByteDance has filed a petition for an injunction Wednesday afternoon, asking a federal court in Washington DC to intervene and quash President Trump's threatened ban of TikTok on national security grounds.

The injunction, filed Wednesday afternoon, comes after a California court shut down Trump's attempt to ban Tencent's...



more from Tyler

Phil's Favorites

SPACs are still bulls***

 

SPACs are still bulls***

Courtesy of 

I almost slipped and bought into the SPAC Renaissance. Almost.

Draftkings looks legit. But Draftkings could have been a true IPO. The SPAC wrapper was beside the point. Chamath and Ackman will probably do something legit, those guys usually find a way to win. Maybe a few others. The rest are / will be garbage. My first impression was right.

Nikola’s stock has now fallen from near 100 down into the 20’s as the guy’s whole story has unraveled. Then the guy stepped down and ran away. None of this had to happen. But Nikola arrived on the markets as the quarry of a Special Purpose Acquisit...



more from Ilene

ValueWalk

Real Estate Crash Ahead or Inflation Hedge

By Sven Carlin. Originally published at ValueWalk.

2021 might bring a real estate crash, but analyzing the last crash of 2009 and what the FED is doing, it is more likely we see inflation increasing real estate prices rather than collapsing them.

[reit]

Q2 2020 hedge fund letters, conferences and more

The real estate market is in the following situation:

  • undersupply in more than 50% of places all over the words
  • be there!
  • a differentiation in demand for various real estate properties
  • Extremely low interest rates that make it cheap to buy and take a mortga...


more from ValueWalk

Kimble Charting Solutions

Is Gold/US Dollar Ratio Sending Bearish Signal To Precious Metals?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Last month, I featured this Gold / US Dollar ratio chart in an article warning of the potential for a trend reversal.

While the broader bullish trend is still intact (higher lows since 2015), it could be time for Gold to take a breather.

Looking at today’s “updated” chart, we can see that the ratio formed a “doji star” candle last month with momentum running at peak levels (concerning). And this month we are seeing follow through to the downside (in the form of a red candle).

As well, this bearish reversal pa...



more from Kimble C.S.

Politics

'Colossal Backdoor Bailout': Outrage as Pentagon Funnels Hundreds of Millions Meant for Covid Supplies to Private Defense Contractors

 

'Colossal Backdoor Bailout': Outrage as Pentagon Funnels Hundreds of Millions Meant for Covid Supplies to Private Defense Contractors

"If you can't get a Covid test or find an N95, it’s because these contractors stole from the American people to make faster jets and fancy uniforms."

By Jake Johnson

Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley hold an end of year press conference at the Pentagon on December 20, 2019 in Arlington, Virginia. (Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Instead of adhering to congressional inten...



more from Politics

Biotech/COVID-19

How and when will we know that a COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective?

 

How and when will we know that a COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective?

How much longer must society wait for a vaccine? ANDRZEJ WOJCICKI/Getty Images

By William Petri, University of Virginia

With COVID-19 vaccines currently in the final phase of study, you’ve probably been wondering how the FDA will decide if a vaccine is safe and effective.

Based on the status of the Phase 3 trials currently underway, it i...



more from Biotech/COVID-19

Chart School

Stocks are not done yet - Update

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

There are a few times in history when a third party said this US paper (stocks, funds or bonds) is worthless.

Here is two.

1) 1965 Nixon Shock - The French said to US we do not want your paper dollars please pay us in gold. This of course led to the US going off the gold standard.

2) 2007 Bear Stern Fund Collapse - Investors said their funds collateral was worth much less than stated. This of course was the beginning of the great america housing bust of 2008.


In both cases it was stated .."look the Emperor is naked!"... (The Empe...

more from Chart School

Digital Currencies

Cryptocurrencies Rarely Used To Launder Money, Fiat Preferred

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by Shaurya Malwa via Decrypt.io,

Traditional channels continue to dominate the estimated $2 trillion global money laundering racket instead of cryptocurrencies, a report says.

In brief
  • Money laundering via cryptocurrencies is not a preferred tool for criminals, a report said...



more from Bitcoin

The Technical Traders

Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling System Suggests Market Peak May Be Near

Courtesy of Technical Traders

Our Adaptive Fibonacci Price Modeling system is suggesting a moderate price peak may be already setting up in the NASDAQ while the Dow Jones, S&P500, and Transportation Index continue to rally beyond the projected Fibonacci Price Expansion Levels.  This indicates that capital may be shifting away from the already lofty Technology sector and into Basic Materials, Financials, Energy, Consumer Staples, Utilities, as well as other sectors.

This type of a structural market shift indicates a move away from speculation and towards Blue Chip returns. It suggests traders and investors are expecting the US consumer to come back strong (or at least hold up the market at...



more from Tech. Traders

Lee's Free Thinking

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia - The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

 

Texas, Florida, Arizona, Georgia – The Branch COVIDIANS Are Still Burning Down the House

Courtesy of Lee Adler, WallStreetExaminer 

The numbers of new cases in some of the hardest hit COVID19 states have started to plateau, or even decline, over the past few days. A few pundits have noted it and concluded that it was a hopeful sign. 

Is it real or is something else going on? Like a restriction in the numbers of tests, or simply the inability to test enough, or are some people simply giving up on getting tested? Because as we all know from our dear leader, the less testing, the less...



more from Lee

Insider Scoop

Economic Data Scheduled For Friday

Courtesy of Benzinga

  • Data on nonfarm payrolls and unemployment rate for March will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • US Services Purchasing Managers' Index for March is scheduled for release at 9:45 a.m. ET.
  • The ISM's non-manufacturing index for March will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the latest week is scheduled for release at 1:00 p.m. ET.
...

http://www.insidercow.com/ more from Insider

Promotions

Free, Live Webinar on Stocks, Options and Trading Strategies

TODAY's LIVE webinar on stocks, options and trading strategy is open to all!

Feb. 26, 1pm EST

Click HERE to join the PSW weekly webinar at 1 pm EST.

Phil will discuss positions, COVID-19, market volatility -- the selloff -- and more! 

This week, we also have a special presentation from Mike Anton of TradeExchange.com. It's a new service that we're excited to be a part of! 

Mike will show off the TradeExchange's new platform which you can try for free.  

...

more from Promotions

Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:

...

more from M.T.M.





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...

Learn more About Phil >>


As Seen On:




About Ilene:

Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.