Chicago PMI Bounces Back But Remains Below January Highs (Thanks To Warm Weather)

Following its demise into contraction in February, Chicago PMI jumped back to 53.6 (expansion) in March which is better than expected but remains below January's 55.5 highs. The last 12 months have seen quite unprecedented noise in this economic barometer and MNI reports respondents saying the recovery is "slow and steady... fuelled by warmer weather."

Jobless Claims Surge Most In 2 Years As Challenger Warns Of "Significant" Jump In Retail, Computer Layoffs

With both ISM Manufacturing and Services employment indices collapsing, endless headlines of layoffs, Challenger-Grey noting Q1 as the worst since 2009, and NFIB small business hiring weak, it is no surprise that initial jobless claims is finally waking up. For the 3rd week in a row - the longest streak since July 2015. The lasty 3 weeks have seen a 9.1% surge in jobless claims - the biggest such rise since April 2014.

Europe Remains Stuck In Deflation For Second Month

The last time Europe had at least two consecutive months of deflation was in late 2014/early 2015 when the ECB launched its sovereign QE, and when prices staged a modest rebound into the rest of the year. One year later, it's more of the same, and as Eurostat revealed earlier today, after a headline price drop of -0.2% in February, March prices declined once more, this time by -0.1% in line with expectations, driven by a -8.7% plunge in energy prices.

Frontrunning: March 31

  • Roller-coaster first quarter ends with shares, dollar under pressure (Reuters)
  • Oil prices slide as U.S. crude stocks hit record (Reuters)
  • GE Files to End Fed Oversight After Shrinking GE Capital (WSJ)
  • FDA Eases Rules for Abortion Pill, Making Access Simpler (BBG)
  • Kremlin denies report of Russia-U.S. deal on Assad's future (Reuters)
  • Thirst for Gasoline Fuels Oil Rally (WSJ)
  • Landlords in last-minute rush to beat stamp duty rises (BBG)

China Sees First Offshore Default By State-Owned Firm In Two Decades

A Hong Kong unit of Guosen Securities is in technical default on a dim sum bond issued in 2014, marking the first offshore default by a Chinese SOE since the collapse of Guangdong International Trust and Investment in 1999. The subsidiary says reports that it has violated a keepweel with its parent are "exaggerated."

On Final Day Of Extremely Volatile Quarter, Futures Trade Modestly Lower

On the last day of an extremely volatile first quarter, following the latest torrid push higher in risk assets over the past two days following Yellen's dovish Tuesday comments, today has seen a modest pull back in risk, whether because the market is massively overbought, because someone finally looked at what record multiple expansion that has taken place in Q1 as earnings are set to collapse by nearly 10%, or simply due to fears that tomorrow's payrolls number will show an abnormal amount of minimum wage waiters and bartenders added.

S&P Revises China's Credit Outlook To Negative On Growth, Debt Concerns - Full Text

Ripley's believe it or not world continues. Earlier today, Hong Kong's Hang Seng market entered a bull market, rising 20% from its February lows, just as Hong Kong retail sales plunged 20.6%, the bigest drop since 1999 and then moments ago, in a move that pushed the Chinese Yuan stronger at least initially, S&P revised its Chinese outlook to negative, saying the economic rebalancing is likely to proceed more slowly than had expected over next 5 years and warning about China's debt load.

From Democracy To Pathocracy: The Rise Of The Political Psychopath

The Founders understood that our freedoms do not flow from the government. They were not given to us only to be taken away by the will of the State. Until we can get back to this way of thinking, until we can remind our fellow Americans what it really means to be a free American, and until we can learn to stand our ground in the face of threats to those freedoms and encourage our fellow citizens to stop being cogs in the machine, we will continue to be treated like slaves in thrall to a bureaucratic police state run by political psychopaths.

PBOC Slams Yuan Shorts Again - Strengthens Currency Most Since 2005

It appears the messaging from The People's Bank Of China to The Fed was heard loud and understood. Having exercised its will to weaken the Yuan (implying turmoil is possible), Janet Yellen delivered the dovish goods and so China 'allowed' the Yuan to rally back. In a double-whammy for everyone involved the biggest 3-day strengthening of the Yuan fix since 2005 also pushed Yuan forwards back to their richest relative to spot since Aug 2014 - once again showing their might against the dastardly speculative shorts.

Yellen-Driven Short-Squeeze Sends Bonds To Best Quarter In 4 Years

After The Fed jawboned the world into the largest aggregate net short position in Treasuries in Q4 since 2010, its rapid realization that all is not well in the real world - and subsequent talking (and walking) back of rate-hike expectations - has sparked the biggest short-squeeze in 6 years and sent Treasuries up by the most since 2012. With odds collapsing for any more rate-hikes in 2016, as Yellen admits their forecasts are worthless, it seems - just as in 2010 - the bonds shorts have a way to go.

"It's A Big, Scary World Out There," BofA Warns, And Only Janet Can Save Us

On Tuesday, Janet Yellen delivered what some observers called her finest “performance” since ascending to the monetary throne in February of 2014. The message the vaunted Fed chair sought to drive home was simple: it wouldn’t matter if the unemployment rate dropped to 1% and inflation expectations spiked above the FOMC’s target overnight - it’s simply too dangerous out there for the Fed to lean hawkish.

We're Not Going To Make It... (Without Real Sacrifice)

Anybody paying into a pension or trying to manage an endowment that needs to be there in 30 or 40 years (or forever, as is the case for university endowments) needs to understand that projections based on prior rates of economic growth are fantasies, hatched when we had the luxury of pretending there were no energy limits. The restructuring of our energy economy, if taken under our own terms and on our own timelines, will utterly crush traditional economic growth as we’ve come to know and love it.

Brazil Posts Largest Budget Deficit Ever As Rousseff Cries "Coup," Olympic Ad Sales Top $1 Billion

Less than 24 hours after VP Michel Temer's PMDB split with President Dilma Rousseff's coalition government, Brazil posted its largest primary deficit on record, underscoring how dire the fiscal situation has become amid the political and economic turmoil. Meanwhile, NBC is still selling ads for this summer's Olympic games in Rio. Who's interested in some expensive air time?