Currency Wars... Are Not Working

While none of the current batch of currency-devaluing Central Bankers would admit that their policies are designed to weaken the currency, enhance competitiveness, and hail a new bright future of growth for their nation (by printing money), it is clear that is the chosen textbook-based path chosen. However, as the following charts show, it's not working...

This Is What A World Addicted To Debt Looks Like

As we spelled out explicitly and succinctly late last month, there is one overriding and extremely simple reason why seemingly every central bank in the developed world is bound and determined to move heaven and earth in the pursuit of generating a “healthy” level of inflation. With 9 countries sitting on debt-to-GDP ratios of 300%+, it’s either inflate the debt away or be crushed under the sheer weight of it. Here is a map showing where all the red ink is concentrated.

If You're An Oil Worker Who Lives Here, Move!

As crude prices drop back to cycle lows, breaking the back of the stability-meme, we thought a quick reminder of the world's major energy projects that are completely FUBAR given the current prices, record production, and record inventories...

The Militarization Of France Is Not Temporary: "10,000 Troops To Remain On The Streets"

Who could have seen this coming? The French government, having deployed military to its streets during the attacks by Islamic extremists last month, has  - just as every other government in the world in the new normal - decided that this temporary militarization of French streets is now permanent. As RT reports, President Hollande has decided to "maintain the level of the army on the national territory at 10,000 troops," with a total of 7,000 troops monitoring (and protecting) religious buildings.

Fed's Annual Stress Test Results: 28/31 Pass - Deutsche & Santander Fail, BofA To Re-Submit

After all 31 banks passed Dodd-Frank's "stress"-test with flying colors and awaited The Fed's CCAR blessing to spread the wealth to shareholders, we thought ironic that The Fed's Tarullo had previously commented that "we don't want banks to know the stress-test scenarios and tailor their portfolios to meet our goals," because that would never happen. The CCAR results are now out and 28 of 31 passed. Deutsche Bank, Santander failed for "qualitative" reasons (with significant and widespreasd deficiencies in risk management) and Bank of America will need to resubmit their proposal.

The 'Other' Biggest Greek Problem: Shipping

Simply put -  the Greek economy still consumes more than it earns. Despite a 25% contraction in its economy, a plunge in domestic consumption and a sharp decline in imports, as WSJ reports, Greece is still exporting less than it imports, i.e. its current account is still negative. The reason... Shipping.

Everyone Is Guessing When It Comes To Oil Prices

Predicting and diagnosing the trajectory of oil prices has become something of a cottage industry in the past year. But along with all of the excess crude flowing from the oil patch, there is also an abundance of market indicators that while important, tend to produce a lot of noise that makes any accurate estimate nearly impossible.

The Euro Is Crashing, DXY Almost 100

A sudden plunge in EURUSD - bashing it down towards the 1.04 handle (which would be the lowest since Jan 2003) has sparked a recoupling of equity fantasy down to everything else's reality. Given its weight in EUR, The USD Index has surged to 100.00 - highest since March 2003. EURUSD is now down 35 handles since Draghi started jawboning... when does this "good" collapse morph into "capital flight" concerns?

Zombie Banks Finance Buybacks, Dividends With Preferreds They May Never Redeem

"Much of the money for buybacks and higher dividends is coming from the banks issuing preferred shares. To investors they look a lot like bonds that pay interest. But for regulators, preferred shares serve as a cushion against any future losses, in part because they never have to be repaid," Reuters notes, suggesting TBTFs are effectively robbing Peter to pay Paul.

3 "Odd" Charts

Stocks are deja-vu-ing once again - just like they did on Monday...

So Much For "Tail" Predictions: Foreign Central Banks Carry Strong 10 Year Auction

Perhaps inspired by our article that the 10 Year was trading very special in repo this morning, touching -1.79% as shorts had piled into the auction on hopes of covering ahead of what many had expected would be a weak auction, some "experts" predicted an imminent tail in today's auction. Well, moments ago the 10 year closed about as solid as they come, with the High Yield of 2.139% pricing 0.4 bps through the When Issued of 2.143%, dampening any hopes to cover profitable shorts into the auction, and ending any speculation about a tail.

Wall Street Bonuses Rose 2% in 2014 To $172,860: 427% Increase In 20 Years

Finally some good news for brokers of ultra-luxury Manhattan real estate. Following the recent freeze in the most expensive housing segment in NYC in which "deals slowed to a trickle" as a result of the soaring US Dollar, and the crack down on offshore illegal wealth, it appeared that the final housing bubble left in the US that has yet to pop, that which focuses on properties $5 million and higher, was on the edge. Its day or reckoning may be delayed, however, following news that the most traditional buyer of high-end Manhattan real estate, Wall Street bankers themselves, may be finally coming back following a 2% increase in Wall Street bonuses in 2014, which pushed the average bonus to $172,860.