The man who has benefited more from governmental subsidies for financial companies (which also happen to comprise his core investments) than anyone else, Warren Buffett, has decided to cry foul and complain to the SEC over what is quickly becoming a war in the news wire world. Turns out, his Business Wire firm, which is one of the top two distributors of official news and information from public companies, has realized that subsidies are actually not all that cool, especially when one is not on the receiving end of wasteful capital spending. As a result Buffett has come to the brilliant conclusion: "Business Wire contends that subsidization would be anti-competitive." We wonder how long it will take before Mr. Buffet concludes the obvious - that government subsidization of his pet Wall Street firm Goldman Sachs has very much the same anti-competitive results? We are not holding our breath. Warren has once again proven that while the word hypocrite may be a tad strong in describing him, it does serve quite well.
"While much of the focus was on the overall number, the breakdown by category was less reassuring. Those areas of the economy that would naturally be associated with a sustainable rebound in activity, including manufacturing, trade, transportation and utilities, and construction, are still hemorrhaging jobs. Moreover, recent developments suggest that two categories which did see respectable gains, education and health care, face major headwinds in the period ahead. With municipal budgets under growing strain, school budgets -- and education-related hiring -- have nowhere to go but down. And with all eyes now focused on the rising cost of health care, the pressure to reign in spending will only increase." - Michael Panzner
Total Lunacy: Mary Schapiro Made $3.3 Million In 2008, Perks Also Include Car Service, Club Fees And Full Expense CompSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 12/04/2009 - 16:51
We will post this without much commentary as the probability we would otherwise be sued for grossly indecent language in a public venue as well as libel and slander is very, very high.
All the fabrications behind the BLS numbers in one easy to digest cartoon. And for those who wish to know what the December NFP number will be, we suggest FOIAinf Obama's TV tour schedule and juxtaposing it with January BLS releases. After all, someone has to take over Oprah's "feel good" show.
A 4% move in 4 hours. At least with the gold bubble out of the way, stocks are fully apprised of what to anticipate. Somewhere Tim Geithner is congratulating himself for a strong dollar job well done. Of course, this does little to resolve the several trillion of worthless crap on bank balance sheets whose "value" just went in the non-FDIC preferred direction. And thus the Sec Tres is reminded why he is scroomed: there is no way out now - either jobs have to revert to trendline (the BLS would need to, ironically, hire humans over Kool-aid infused monkeys to do the next data analysis), or banks will be soon knocking on Sheila Bair's door, reminding that they were just kidding about that TARP payment. In that sense Napoelon Iceman Dynamite, Fred Mishkin is correct that gold is merely a sideshow.
It doesn’t take a fancy European name like Jan or a PhD to take the guesswork out of the
monthly Non-Farm Payroll data. A simple 3-factor model can predict payrolls within spittin’ distance of the actual post-revision result. The monthly average of the 4-week moving average of initial unemployment claims (sa), the monthly average of the insured unemployment rate (sa), and the %Y/Y change in employee withholding taxes.
The economy is so hot, that democrats in Congress are now moving with yet another stimulus package, this one for $170 billion, targeting bankrupt states and formerly surging unemployment (Obama has some TV appearances today; the BLS will be back to its previously scheduled job collapse next month). In other news, Japan did approximately 10 such small scale bailouts even as its market proceeded to keep probing new lows over the last two decades, and as reinvested 3x its annual GDP in comparable such one-time boosts to the economy without doing anything to prevent its current deflationary collapse.
Ratigan Grills Propaganda Queen Christina Romer, Demands Windfall Profit Tax Clarity, Gets Blank Stare ResponseSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 12/04/2009 - 13:32
Ratigan cuts to the chase, bypassing the hollow rhetoric by Administration propaganda queen Christina Romer, who can't beat enough drums on today's pathologically ludicrous BLS numbers, yet is completely unwilling to discuss how the White House will proceed to recoup any of the taxpayer-subsidized windfalls at Wall Street firms. Any considerations of windfall tax, be they in the form of a Tobin tax, now openly supported by such people as Warren Buffett and John Bogle, or directly imposed, seems to not be on the White House's agenda currently or any time in the future. How is it so difficult for Obama to understand that Main Street is demanding some quid-pro-quo of firms like Goldman, whose employees are covertly purchasing Ferraris even as excess bank reserves hit another all time record yesterday, and instead of lending money out the banks continue to collect a risk-free 0.25% on these excess reserves, thereby once again picking taxpayers' pockets.
"We have been making a case for long USD positions against JPY, AUD, and EUR recently. A quick look at the DXY chart shows that a close through the 50-dma would trigger a collapse of a massive carry trade. We are no there yet, but there are reasons to believe it is a strong possibility." - Nic Lenoir
After opening at 58, Nakheel 3.1725%'s are now trading at an all time low of 54. Does someone know something ahead of the weekend, or has QVT decided to simply take its losses and move on? Or does Dubai's ghost simply refuse to go away.
Jan Hatzius' mea culpa, after the BLS decided to kick the the NFP consensus squarely in the shins, is lacking. Most notable the discussion about lagging wage increases: you can't have inflation when people are making less then (or the same as) they used to make in nominal terms.Where is the marginal difference coming from: why the JPMorgan Chase Gold-plated Tungsten credit card of course.
The man who brought down Galleon is not finished, and if the report by Reuters' Matt Goldstein is correct, FBI special agent B.J. Kang may well have his sights set on the top of the hedge fund pantheon: SAC Capital itself. This is not a surprise to Zero Hedge, and is something we have speculated on in the past, however the intricacies of such a spectacular take down would have to be refined beyond any reasonable doubt as any allegations against Mr. Cohen will likely see the involvement of every single $1,000/hour billing lawyer in the world, taking on any DOJ case.
Major move in Fed Fund futures today, with the implied probability of a rate hike to 1.25% by November 2010 nearly doubling to 14% from 8.1%. In fact major move to the right across the spectrum, as expected Fund rates at 1% or higher surging by over 50% and now coming it at 45.4% compared to 31% as recently as yesterday. The inflation hawks case just got stronger by about 50% as well. Yet with trillions more in bad real estate assets on bank balance sheets still needing Fed purchases, the Chairman is truly between a rock and a hard place.
With today's highly suspicious BLS job data (we are waiting to hear from TrimTabs' Charles Biderman for his take on this number) we would like to highlight some of the majorly broken correlations that are getting broken today and causing major pain for traders on the other side. And while any statistician will tell you correlation does not imply causation, in this market of low volume algo trading, correlation is likely the only thing that implies causation. The questions now: i) when does Bernanke succumb to the inflation hawks who will beat the drum on tightening even louder, and ii) will the fund flows out of bonds into futures be enough to offset the dollar surge, whose natural expression is to push stocks lower.