Today, with just one day to go until Bharara deadline runs out to plead the SCOTUS to opine on redefining what "insider trading" means , we found out why Bharara had requested the extension: as Reuters reports, the U.S. Justice Department asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to reverse a federal appellate court's ruling that authorities said limited their ability to pursue insider trading cases.
"In the past 12 months investors traded $18.2 trillion worth of ETF shares. For perspective, that means the amount of dollars exchanging hands through ETFs is now more than the U.S. gross domestic product, which stands at $17.4 trillion," Bloomberg reports. Or, put differently, the financial apocalypse draws near.
This negative breadth signal has an ominous long-term track record. The 59 occurrences all took place in 4 distinct periods, though most of them happened within 2 clusters: August 1972 (13), November 1999-March 2000 (44), September 2007 (1), July 2015 (1)
Having exposed the reality that the world's capital markets are a manipulated shell game, Janus' Bill Gross has a message for the perpetual bulls in his latest letter to investors - "say a little prayer." Gross continues, "low interest rates are not the cure – they are part of the problem," warning that ZIRP has enabled, "a host of zombie and future zombie corporations now roam the real economy. Schumpeter’s 'creative destruction' – the supposed heart of capitalistic progress – has been neutered. The old remains in place, and new investment is stifled." As he previously warned, when the central bank manipulation is removed the likely trajectory of prices is downward...
With stocks just 1-2% from record highs, because China is fixed, oil is recovering, Europe is awesome, and gas prices are low? it appears the talking heads forgot to tell the 'people' how great things are. Bloomberg's Consumer Comfort index plunged (by the most since Sept 2014) to hover at 18 month lows as 70% of Americans see the state of the economy as negative. Rather amusingly an intriguing 1% of Americans see the state of the economy as 'excellent' - wonder which 1% that is...
"The International Monetary Fund’s board has been told Athens’ high debt levels and poor record of implementing reforms disqualify Greece from a third IMF bailout of the country, raising new questions over whether the institution will join the EU’s latest financial rescue."
A look at the internals reveals a major surprise - while many said that the Q1 economy does not expose the true strength of the US consumer (instead of shopping in stores, they shopped online which wasn't captured or comparable), what actually happened was that Personal Consumption Expenditures as a % of GDP actually declined from 1.4% to 1.2% when netting out the harsh winter impact. As in the real economic driver was even weaker and this time you can't blame it on the weather!
Is bad news, bad news again?
"Well, I think it will be jarring when we see an interest rate hike. People will get out the smelling salts."
"No question that low interest rates have exacerbated the wealth gap between the poor and the rich because the rich have assets."
The worst "economic expansion" in history was even worse than previously expected.
Initial jobless claims rose 12k last week to 267k but remains zero-interest-rate-dismissingly close to 42 year lows...
Yesterday it was US and Italian energy giants Chevron and Saipem which announced a total of over 10,000 new job cuts in the aftermath of oil sliding back under $50 and resuming its downward trend. Today, we got more confirmation of this when Royal Dutch Shell, still basking in the glow of its proposed $70 billion mega-acquisition of BG Group, announced it would axe 6,500 jobs this year and step up spending cuts, responding to an extended period of lower oil prices which contributed to a 37 percent drop in the oil and gas group's second-quarter profits.
Speaking to a gathering of some 200 Syriza lawmakers on Wednesday, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras drew a line in the sand, insisting that the divisions within the party cannot persist. In a dramatic move, Tsipras called for a party referendum on Sunday to decide once and for all whether Syriza lawmakers will support the bailout or push for its cancellation.