Market Wrap: Stocks Drift, Dollar Stronger, Oil Snaps Rally, Treasurys Slide On Microsoft Deal

So far it has been largely a repeat of the previous overnight session, where absent significant macro drivers, the attention again remains focused both on China, which reported some truly ugly inflation (with 0.8% Y/Y CPI the lowest since Lehman, just call it deflation net of the "goalseeking") data (which as usually is "good for stocks" pushing the SHCOMP 1.5% higher as it means even more easing), and on Greece, which has not made any major headlines in the past 24 hours as patience on both sides is growing thin ahead of the final "bluff" showdown between Greece and the Eurozone is imminent. The question as usual is who will have just a fraction more leverage in the final assessment - Greece has made its ask known, and it comes in the form of 10 billion euros in short-term "bridge" financing consisting of €8 billion increase in Bills issuance and €1.9 billion in ECB profits, as it tries to stave off a funding crunch, a proposal which will be presented on the Wednesday meeting of euro area finance ministers in Brussels. The question remains what Europe's countrbid, if any, will be. For the answer: stay tuned in 24 hours.

Private Property: The Only Solution To The Vaccine Controversy

A measles outbreak in the U.S. has prompted a national debate over vaccinations, a debate that quickly turned ugly baby vaccinebecause both sides think they are protecting their children from harm. Some parents say that they should have the right to refuse vaccines if they think it is in their children’s best interest, while others argue that ill-informed parental views can be overridden by the State if the public health is at stake. When argued on the traditional battleground, the problem has no solution. As with school prayer, immigration policies, parade permits for controversial groups, or allowing the homeless in “public” libraries, here too there is no way to solve the problem except by letting private property owners set the rules on their land.

China's Solution To "Tyrannical" Billionaires Who Harm The Economy: Execution

In some countries, the 'solution' the state chooses for its ignominous billionaire class of inequality-garnering, economy-wrecking individuals is to either a) turn one's back for a brief enough moment as to allow the tyrant to leave the country in search of a golden beach upon which to lament how great a trade being long European bonds would have been' or b) enhance their wealth further on a quid pro quo basis. In China, the 'treatment' for corrupt billionaires who love casinos, cigars, and luxury cars is much simpler... execution.

US Senator Demands A Federal Reserve Bailout Of Greece

And yet, perhaps in asking for a Federal Reserve bailout of Greece, everyone's favorite Vermont socialist does make some sense: after all if the Fed is bailing out European banks, and just European banks, on an ad hoc basis, and usually quite well hidden (see for example: "How The Fed's Latest QE Is Just Another European Bailout"), does it really matter if the Fed spends what amounts to one daily POMO amount to save some 11 million Greeks?

A Bull In A China Shop

China’s stock market is on fire but its economy is cooling off.  Can the divergence last? And what’s next for China? Stay tuned to find out.

Dan Loeb Is Scared Of "The Haunted House Market"

2015 has been marked by increasing volatility, prompting Third Point's Dan Loeb to characterize this as a “haunted house market” where a new scary event lurks around each corner. Out of this year’s 25 trading days, 22 have had intra-day moves in the market of more than 1%..."Avoiding dramatic downside in individual names and sizeable losses during inevitable sell-offs will be key to succeeding in this market and navigating successfully through the haunted hallways of 2015."

Chinese Producer Prices Tumble For 34th Month In A Row, Worst 'Deflation' Since Oct 2009

For the 34th month in a row, Chinese Producer Prices (PPI) fell YoY (dropping 4.3%, missing expectations of a 3.8% deflation). This is the biggest YoY drop in prices since October 2009 led by a 9.9% plunge in fuel costs. Chinese Consumer Prices are also showing continued deceleration with a 0.8% rise YoY (missing expectations of a 1.0% rise YoY) - the weakest CPI low-flation since November 2009. Great news for the average Chinese person is that food prices rose at the slowest pace in years (and even better the cost of alcohol & tobacco fell YoY again).

A Very Slippery Slope: Yes, Your Samsung Smart TV Can Listen To Your Private Conversations

The biggest story in the tech world today is the revelation that Samsung’s Smart TV can and will listen to your conversations, and will share the details with a third party. Yes, you read that right. Here’s the actual language from the privacy policy itself: “Please be aware that if your spoken words include personal or other sensitive information, that information will be among the data captured and transmitted to a third party.” Naturally, this has freaked people out and led to multiple comparisons to 1984 and the ubiquitous Big Brother.

Mapping The Next Nation To Join The Currency War

With China devaluation looming as the great unspoken Black Swan trade, and on the heels of the Swiss National Bank folding on its 'peg', we thought a quick glance at the world's "pegged" currencies would be useful as a guide to where the next shoe (and pant legs) will drop. With global FX implied volatility at EU crisis highs, the markets clearly expect more to come...

Should I Trust The Government?

Only the people of Japan and Spain trust their government less than the people of the U.S. trust our government. The confluence of government and business has created a corporate fascist surveillance state. Trust in government, politicians, bankers, and the media is plummeting.

How Wall Street, In Broad Daylight, Took Over The US Government

... And all of this takes place in broad daylight, in front of the entire American population, which is too bored, too lazy, and far too distracted by collecting the government handout equivalent of plastic beads, spending on 99 cent apps and watching the Grammys to care.

Yellen, We Have A Problem

Just three things to consider: "The Fed doesn't matter?" - so just ignore the correlation between Federal Reserve balance sheet expansion (flow) and S&P 500 performance tumbling lower. "Earnings don't matter?" - because for now, stocks are entirely ignoring the three-month plunge in consensus EPS expectations. "Macro fundamentals don't matter?" - because if they did, US equity prices would be collapsing. Trade accordingly...

Behind The Global Game Of Thrones

We have put the sociopaths in charge, in an international and largely anonymous dictatorship. Who really pulls the levers in the IMF, or NATO etc? We have no way of knowing. And that’s the problem. And that is what Syriza, and precious few besides them, are set to fight. And why they deserve – and need – our support. Because if they don’t win, we don’t.