Santa Cruz County Votes To Cease Doing Business With 5 TBTF Mega Banks

It appears that Ryan Coonerty, the Supervisor of the Third District of Santa Cruz County, wrote a letter back in June to the rest of the Board of Supervisors, in which he bravely pleaded the county cease business operations with five of the TBTF Wall Street Mega Banks. Why you ask? Well, because they are criminal felons. Considering Eric Holder refused to punish them, someone has to take a stand...“There seems to be no limit to the greed in some our nation’s largest banks. I believe it is critical that the County only work with the most trustworthy institutions as we invest and protect the public’s tax dollars. Santa Cruz County should not be involved with those who rigged the world’s biggest financial markets."

President Obama To Explain How Great The Iran Nuclear Deal - Live Press Conference

As everyone knows by now, a nuclear 'deal' between Iran and the P5+1 (US, France, China, Germany, UK, Russia) was announced earlier this week. Under this agreement, Iran promises to limit its nuclear program in return for various international sanctions to be lifted. Republicans are not happy with the deal (Boehner: "Obama's deal will only embolden Iran"); Israel's PM Netanyahu warned it was "a stunning historical mistake," but we are sure President Obama will put everyone straight as he heads into the next 60 days of Congressional wrangling...

Tsipras Says Will Be Difficult To Remain In Power As More Than Half Of Syriza Slam Deal

Update: TSIPRAS TELLS LAWMAKERS IT WILL BE DIFFICULT TO REMAIN PM WITHOUT THEIR SUPPORT

Today, the Greek parliament is being asked to legislate away its sovereignty in exchange for a bridge loan and a third bailout program that should allow the country to remain in the euro. Facing a rebellion from within Syriza, Tsipras will have to rely on opposition party support to secure approval for what is effectively a German coup.

Rep. Sean Duffy Crushes Yellen: "If Anyone Is Trying To Sweep This Leak Under The Rug - It's The Fed"

We said previously that today's "Humphrey-Hawkins" testimony Q&A would be punchy and sure enough while Chairman Hensarling took an early swing, Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy was the man to go toe-to-toe with Janet "I am the law" Yellen over the Fed's stunning ignorance of Congressional legal proceedings. "You did nothing," he begins, "you're so concerned about bringing the leaker to the forefront that what will you do? Nothing!" Yellen replies, reading from a seemingly prepared statement, The Fed has "clear rules" for leak investigations and Duffy cuts her off with a sharp upper cut, "That's true, you did not follow those rules.. if anyone is trying to sweep this under the rug, it is The Fed!" We suspect somewhere Pedro da Costa is smirking...

Yellen's Contradictory Message On Upcoming Rate Hikes

Yellen, in an important sequence in her semiannual testimony to Congress, according to WSJ's Jon Hilsenrath, tipped her hand to the benefit of raising short-term interest rates sooner rather than later...

Janet Yellen's "Humphrey-Hawkins" 'We're Not Above The Law' Testimony - Live Feed

While Janet Yellen's prepared remarks were her normal bland data-dependent-when-we-want-to-be, rate-hikes-maybe-sooner-or-later self, we suspect the Q&A of The Fed Chair's Humphey-Hawkins testimony will be worth the price of admission. Face to face with Jeb Hensarling - who dares to demand The Fed respond to Congressional probes - will be a highlight but it will be interesting to see if the politicians suck up to their debt-monetizer-in-chief or try to score politically populist points with elections not so very far away...

Italy – Non-Performing Loans Hit A New Record High

The real danger to the euro area probably doesn’t emanate from Greece, but from two of its heavyweights, namely France and Italy. If one thinks things properly through, Greece is really a side-show. The euro zone remains full of accidents waiting to happen and some of them have the potential to become truly gigantic accidents.

Greece's New German Overlords "Irritated" By Tsipras "I Don't Support What I'm Doing" Comment

Comments by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Tuesday evening undermined trust that Greek govt will take ownership of economic adjustments in new bailout program, German Deputy Finance Minister Jens Spahn says on ARD public television. Spahn is a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU party.  “What the Greek prime minister did on Greek television yesterday irritates me."

USDCAD Surges To 6 Year Highs As Bank Of Canada Slashes GDP Forecasts, Unexpectedly Cuts Rates

In what seems to have surprised FX trader, Bank of Canada has taken an ax to growth forecasts and rates...

*BOC CUTS CANADA 2015 GDP FORECAST TO 1.1% FROM 1.9%
*BANK OF CANADA CUTS 2Q GDP ESTIMATE TO -0.5% FROM 1.8%
*BANK OF CANADA CUTS BENCHMARK INTEREST RATE TO 0.5%

Furthermore, it warns that "consumer debt vulnerabilities are edging higher" and export weakness is "puzzling."

Recession Watch - Industrial Output Growth Plunges To 5 Year Lows

Industrial Production rose just 1.54% YoY, the weakest growth since Feb 2010 and flashing a major recessionary red light. Utilities were the biggest contributor, as Manufacturing output ended June unchanged (against expectations of a modest 0.1% rise), missing for the 2nd month in a row. Notably vehicle production tumbled 5.5% MoM. Not exactly the end to Q2 that GDP hockey-stick'rs will be wanting.

Producer Prices Rise Again Driven By Surge In Energy Costs

If low oil pries are great for America "unequivocally," then the continued surge in Energy costs (+2.4% MoM in June) must be [fill in the blank]? PPI Final Demand rose 0.4% MoM - near the fatest pace in 3 years (beating expectations of a 0.2% rise) but fell 0.7% YoY. The huge gap between core and headline PPI continues to grow with PPI Ex Food and Energy rising 0.8% YoY, its first acceleration in 2015.

"Rigged" - The Most Absurd Global Financial Situation Ever

This is the most absurd global financial situation we can remember. There may have been wilder outbreaks of mass fatuous behaviour – as Adam Smith could easily have said, there’s a great deal of absurdity in a market. But we have long held that if you don’t understand the rules of the game, best not to play the game. Doing anything in markets today involves making a macro market call that is fundamentally impossible. All markets have become speculative arenas courtesy of central bank activity.

Yellen Statement To Congress: Rate Hike "Appropriate At Some Point This Year" If Economy Evolves As Expected - Full Text

Key highlights from the first day of Janet Yellen's testimony before Congress: " If the economy evolves as we expect, economic conditions likely would make it appropriate at some point this year to raise the federal funds rate target, thereby beginning to normalize the stance of monetary policy. Indeed, most participants in June projected that an increase in the federal funds target range would likely become appropriate before year-end. But let me emphasize again that these are projections based on the anticipated path of the economy, not statements of intent to raise rates at any particular time."

Empire Manufacturing Beats Despite Slump In New Orders & Employment

After printing negative for the last 3 months and falling to the lowest since Jan 2013, Empire Manufacturing jumped to 3.86 (beating expectations of a 3.0 print for the first time since Jan). While some will celebrate (and others fear good news is bad news), both New Orders and Number of Employees fell in July, as inventories plunged. The main driver of the jump in the headline index was "hope" once again, rising for the first time since March.

Frontrunning: July 15

  • Tsipras Braves Parliament on Aid as Greek Outlook Worsens (BBG)
  • European markets rise before Yellen speech, Greek vote (Reuters)
  • China’s Growth Beats Economists’ Forecast as Stimulus Kicks In (BBG)
  • China stocks drop again, positive data shrugged off (Reuters)
  • Yellen intensifies Republican outreach amid Fed probe, Senate bill (Reuters)
  • Iran deal holds both promise and peril for Hillary Clinton (Reuters)
  • Iranians Party Into the Night as Khamenei Backs Accord (BBG)