Posts Tagged ‘ZIRP’

2011 – What’s Coming

Courtesy of Bruce Krasting

Oh boy is 2011 going to be an exciting year! Some things that I think might happen:

  • -Volatility is going up across the board. If you have the stomach for the swings that are coming across all markets there is a ton of money to be made; balls and timing are all that are necessary. The markets will create dozens of opportunities to make and lose.
  • -There will be 50 days with a swing in the S&P greater than 1%. There will be 10 days where gold swings $50. There will be two days with a drop greater than 100 bucks. Most of the big moves will be down moves. Bonds will not be spared the volatility.
  • -Gold will be higher a year from now but off its peak. At some time in the fall, gold will be near 1,800 and the New York Times will do a front-page story that gold is on its way to 2,000. That will be the high point of the year.
  • -Copper will continue to rise. This metal will benefit as the poor man’s gold. Why buy an ounce of something for $1,600 when you can have a whole pound of something else for only $5? The logic is compelling only because there is no logic. Increasingly, it will become understood that money does not hold value. Copper will do a better job of storing value then a Treasury Bond.
  • -The US bond market is in for a heck of a year. The 30-year will trade at BOTH 3% and 5%. Higher rates will come early in the year, then the deflation trade will come back into vogue.
  • -Spain will be the next sovereign debtor that falls prey to the market. This will happen before the end of the 1st Q. The package to bail them out will exceed $500b. This will exhaust the EU resources. There will be very high expectations that contagion will then move to Italy. That will not happen in 2011 (2012?) The European Central Bank will step up to the table (finally) and support the market for Italy. Sometime between March and June Italian bonds will be a great buy.
  • -The IMF will contribute $125b to the Spanish bailout. The US portion


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Where We Are Today: Interest Rates ‘Too High,’ Double Dip on Deck, the Failure of Economics

Key point: "Reform is the only solution that is sustainable. Austerity or stimulus without reform are worse than useless." I post many articles discussing virtues and vices of more stimulus vs. the benefits and evils of austerity measures.  But I think Jesse has it precisely correct. – Ilene 

Where We Are Today: Interest Rates ‘Too High,’ Double Dip on Deck, the Failure of Economics

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

David Rosenberg of Gluskin Sheff is a daily read of mine. His most recent breakfast message does a remarkably concise job of summarizing the US financial markets.

The reason for the gold market rally is obvious; declining production in the face of record monetization and increasing demand. The same financial engineers in the central banks that ruined the economy had been suppressing the price of gold through managed sales for almost thirty years in a desperate reaction to the Nixon assault on Bretton Woods in 1971. And now we see the fruits of their long contrivance, and its inevitable failure. The world will have to develop a replacement to this incredible farce we call globalization and world trade based on arbitrary and easily manipulated values.

At the same time, Dave points out that according to the Taylor Rule the Fed is overly tight, even with ZIRP! We have spoken about this in the past, in making a distinction between quantitative and qualitative easing. This also speaks to the massive deformity which the US economy had become under first Greenspan and then Bernanke, and a financial sector turned outsized predator, with little connection to real market discipline of supply and demand thanks in large part to the proliferation of derivatives.

Ben could adjust somewhat this with the interest payments on reserves which the Fed is now paying. I suspect at some point he will, even taking them negative if necessary. But the Fed’s first priority is the insolvent Wall Street firms, and the continued charade that allows them to still pay outrageous bonuses while the nations suffers between the hammer of unemployment and the anvil of a toxic disaster in the Gulf and the collapse of its local economies. The first policy failure was in not nationalizing the insolvent US banks like Goldman and liquidating them. The second policy error is the failure to engage in serious financial reform, severely curtailing the derivatives market to something more resembling a well…
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The NY Fed's Trading Desk Head Laments The End Of Stupid Leverage And Wants His Derivatives Back (Or Why We Are Stuck With ZIRP For A Long, Long Time)

The NY Fed’s Trading Desk Head Laments The End Of Stupid Leverage And Wants His Derivatives Back (Or Why We Are Stuck With ZIRP For A Long, Long Time)

http://media.photobucket.com/image/leverage%20elaine%20supkis/ElaineSupkis/WTF.jpgCourtesy of Tyler Durden

In a video conference before the ACI 2010 World Congress in Sydney, Australia, the head of the FRBNY’s trading desk, aka, the busiest daytrader over the past year, Brian Sack, demonstrated once again that Fed members are either completely clueless about ongoing market dynamics or are so good at octuple re-reverse psychology, that they make the squid pale in shame and squirt ink in envy.

Before we get into the meat of Sacks’ lament, it bears refreshing on Paul McCulley’s letter from yesterday. While Paul may have been merely pushing his book in an attempt to convince readers that rates will (or should) stay mega low for years and years (and Greenspan will be more than happy to admit that low rates have nothing, nothing, to do with asset bubbles), he did have one great observation, namely that the explosion in various forms of shadow credit: derivatives, securitizations, etc., were all dictated by the need to leverage a relatively flat yield curve.

When the 2s10s is in the 40-50bps range, financial institutions needed to find a way to leverage the long-dated end of the curve: if the Fed would not cooperate in bringing the near-end lower, well, demand for, and application of financial innovation, resulted in the multi-trillion shadow banking system. This extremely simple observartion is of remarkable consequence: securitization was not predicated on extra supply of cheap credit but arose out of bank demand for synthetic steepness: instead of capitalizing on the unlevered curve steepness, banks decided to go the volume route, making credit a way of life for everyone, thus allowing them to go all in on a massively-leveraged curve trade. The key implication is that in the current Fed-dominated environment, where the 2s10s is at record levels of almost 300 bps, banks have no need for shadow banking! Another way of saying this is that what financial institutions needed a multi trillion shadow system for, when the curve was flat, they can achieve now with the curve being as steep as it is and without shadow banking. The big banks simply do not have a need for shadow banking: ergo the demand pull side. And no…
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GOLD REPRESENTS THE MASSIVE RISKS IN THIS MARKET

Is gold risky?  At least Pragcap thinks so, in contrast to many other’s predicting much higher prices.  Here’s why. – Ilene

GOLD REPRESENTS THE MASSIVE RISKS IN THIS MARKET

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist

Goldbeater producing

There is no doubt a bubble forming in gold prices. In my opinion, the price of gold perfectly reflects the irrationality across many major markets, most notably, the equity markets. Despite no signs of inflation gold is up over 70% in the last year.  As we’ve long opined, this is nothing more than the irrational money chasing that the Federal Reserve has once again created via their magically destructive printing press

The Fed is effectively forcing investors into risky assets as they give investors no other choice to support their retirement/income needs via their ZIRP.  The price of gold has gone nearly parabolic in recent weeks and I would now classify gold as the riskiest of risky assets to own.  This move down in the dollar and up in gold has come to epitomize the failure of Fed policy to reflate markets back to normality.   As we’ve said before, there are only two outcomes from the Fed printing policy: more bubbles or utter failure.  For now, it looks like we’re in store for the former and that means there are more busts in our future.   I think monetary and fiscal policy are currently making our macro problems even worse, but how bad these problems become has yet to be seen.

 GOLD REPRESENTS THE MASSIVE RISKS IN THIS MARKET

 


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Strong Dollar Lies & More On Lies – Strong Dollar

More On Lies – Strong Dollar

Courtesy of Karl Denninger at The Market Ticker 

South Korean Economy Boosted As Won Jumps To New High

10 handles came off the S&P 500 in less than 30 minutes (a 1% move) when the dollar strengthened by about two tenths of 1%.

What would be the impact of the dollar moving higher by 10%?

This is the problem with the carry trade.  The leverage that gets deployed, once it gets going, is typically in the range of 5:1, 10:1 or even more compared to the equity markets. (Absolute leverage in the FX markets is frequently 100:1 – in fact, even retail traders can run 100:1 leverage at most FX brokers!)

Just remember folks, ZIRP and it’s pals are always exploited by the politicians to issue debt "free" into the markets.  But once issued that debt has to be rolled over (since governments almost never run an actual surplus allowing them to pay down that debt), which means that the issue is not whether you can make the interest payments today, it is whether you can make them tomorrow given the possible changes in interest rates.

If interest expense ever exceeds income, you’re finished, just as was the "buyer" who took out an OptionARM and then had his payment reset to more than his income.  Instant Boom.

The same thing happens to nations.

The problem is that nobody knows exactly where the line is, because that debt must be rolled, and it is the future cost of that rollover, not today’s interest rates, that determine where the wall is.

Have we reached the wall?  Probably not yet.  But if we keep issuing debt into artificially-suppressed interest rates, we will hit it with certainty, and the carry traders are betting (successfully so far) that government will not stop issuing debt (spending more than they make) and Bernanke will not pull enough liquidity to cause short rates to rise by even 1 or 2%.

dollar Better hope all those "ands" and "buts" hold up folks.

(PS, if you think they will: Sold to you.)

Strong Dollar Lies

"His lips are moving."

Geither said:

"I believe deeply that it’s very important for the U.S. and the economic health of the U.S. that we maintain a strong dollar," he said at a roundtable discussion with Japanese reporters. "We bear special responsibility for trying to make sure that we


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Zero Hedge

California Troubled Utility Proposed $2 Billion Rate Hike To Fund "Wildfire Safety"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

One month after the stock and bonds of troubled California Utility Pacific Gas & Electric cratered after the company hinted of a liquidity crisis as a result of mounting legal obligations following California's destructive Camp Fire, shocking and infuriating its investors...

...



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Phil's Favorites

May defiant, Macron contrite amid crises that threaten the EU's stability

 

Visit to hell by Mexican artist Mauricio García Vega.

May defiant, Macron contrite amid crises that threaten the EU's stability

Courtesy of Helen DrakeLoughborough University

By some freakish alignment of political firmaments, both Theresa May and Emmanuel Macron have lived the week from political hell. Both the British prime minister and French president face challenges to their very survival as national leader.

On the face of it, their winter woes are surprisingly similar. The political authority of both Macron and May is under ...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Dow Theory Concerns? Transportation Stocks Make New Lows

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

The bull market is experiencing its first real test since the 2014/2015 stock market correction. Volatility is high and key sectors are heading lower.

One such sector is the Transportation Sector(NYSEARCA: IYT) and select stocks.

The age-old Dow Theory call for the Industrials and Transports to lead the market (and confirm each others moves). Currently, both are struggling. But the Dow Transports are on the precipice of a major breakdown. Looking at the chart below, you can see that the Transportation Sector ETF (IYT) is attempting to break down below its 12-month trading range and 9-year rising support line.

If the market doesn’t reverse higher soon, this break down will send a negative message to investors about the economy… and the broader stock market.

A move lower wou...



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Digital Currencies

Crypto Bull Tom Lee: Bitcoin's 'Fair Value' Closer To $15,000, But He's Sick Of People Asking About It

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Listening to the crypto bulls of yesteryear continue to defend their case for new new all-time highs, despite a growing mountain of evidence to suggest that last year's rally was spurred by the blind greed of gullible marginal buyers (not to mention outright manipulation), one can't help but feel a twinge of pity for Mike Novogratz and Wall Street's original crypto uber-bull, Fundstrat's Tom Lee.

Lee achieved rock star status thanks to ...



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Insider Scoop

Economic Data Scheduled For Friday

Courtesy of Benzinga.

  • Data on retail sales for November will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • Data on industrial production for November will be released at 9:15 a.m. ET.
  • The flash Composite Purchasing Managers' Index for December is schedule for release at 9:45 a.m. ET.
  • Data on business inventories for October will be released at 10:00 a.m. ET.
  • The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the recent week is schedule for release at 1:00 p.m. ET.

Posted-In: Economic DataNews Economics ...



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Biotech

Those designer babies everyone is freaking out about - it's not likely to happen

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

 

Those designer babies everyone is freaking out about – it's not likely to happen

Babies to order. Andrew crotty/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy A Cecile JW Janssens, Emory University

When Adam Nash was still an embryo, living in a dish in the lab, scientists tested his DNA to make sure it was free of ...



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Members' Corner

Blue Wave with Cheri Jacobus (Q&A II, Updated)

By Ilene at Phil's Stock World

Cheri Jacobus is a widely known political consultant, pundit, writer and outspoken former Republican and frequent guest on CNN, MSNBC, FOX News, CBS.com, CNBC and C-Span. Cheri shares her thoughts on the political landscape with us in a follow up to our August interview.

Updated 12-10-18

Ilene: What do you think about Michael Cohen's claim that the Trump Organization's discussions with high-level Russian officials about a deal for Trump Tower Moscow continued into June 2016?

...

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Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Dec 09, 2018

Courtesy of Blain.

Bears are certainly showing the type of strength we haven’t seen in a long time.   A week ago at this time futures were surging on news of a “truce” for 90 days between China and the U.S. in their trade spat.  But the charts were still not saying lovely things despite a major rally the week prior.   And by Tuesday, darkness had descended back on the indexes, with another gut punch Friday.    A lot of emphasis was put on a long term Treasury yield dropping below a shorter term Treasury.

On Monday, the yield on five year government debt slid below the yield on three year debt, a phenomenon which has p...



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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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ValueWalk

Vilas Fund Up 55% In Q3; 3Q18 Letter: A Bull Market In Bearish Forecasts

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

The Vilas Fund, LP letter for the third quarter ended September 30, 2018; titled, “A Bull Market in Bearish Forecasts.”

Ever since the financial crisis, there has been a huge fascination with predictions of the next “big crash” right around the next corner. Whether it is Greece, Italy, Chinese debt, the “overvalued” stock market, the Shiller Ratio, Puerto Rico, underfunded pensions in Illinois and New Jersey, the Fed (both for QE a few years ago and now for removing QE), rising interest rates, Federal budget deficits, peaking profit margins, etc...



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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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