Two weeks ago we highlighted just how "screwed" Las Vegas is due to the catastrophic drought that is occurring (combined with almost total ignorance that this is a problem). As Bloomberg's James Nash reports, about 55% of Nevada, already the nation’s driest state, is under “extreme’’ or “exceptional’’ drought conditions, the worst grades on the U.S. Drought Monitor; but recently the situation has got even worse. Lake Mead, the man-made reservoir that supplies 90 percent of the water for 2 million people in the Las Vegas area, has been reduced by drought to the lowest level since it was filled in 1937, according to the federal government who explained "It concerns us all very much," as it is a resource used by 3 states. Simply put, The shortfall is endangering water supplies to the residents and 43 million annual visitors to the driest metropolitan area in the country.
The current repo fails problem “directly rebukes” the idea that the Fed has “all possible scenarios covered.” The FOMC wants, actually needs, to instill confidence that it can transform itself from its QE legacy (however much tarnished it has grown). This only heightens the idea that stability is a paperlike illusion that may be undone with only the slightest “shock” or disruption – the hidden asymmetry that is the hallmark of fragility. This severely, in my opinion, undermines the credibility of even the idea of the rate floor.
European markets were ugly going in: Portugal's largest bank on the ropes and macro data weak. US earnings calls confirmed no Q2 bounce back and macro data piled on (along with various GDP downgrades). Equity markets opened gap down with a big flush of "most shorted" longs and Russell 2000 dipped into the red for 2014. Then the rally-monkey turned up, slamming VIX and lifting USDJPY to squeeze shorts and drag stocks "off the lows." Once shorts reache dunch, stocks limped lower "off the highs." Away from the v-shaped recovery in stocks, Gold broke above $1340 (4-month highs) and silver gained. Oil turned around early losses closing up for 1st time in 9 sessions ($103). The USD rose (on EUR weakness) but remains lower on the week. VIX ened 0.8 vols higher at 12.5 (well off its intraday highs though). The day ended with Carl Icahn warning that "it's time be cautious about US markets." VIX pushed higher into the close as investors remember Europe opens in 8 hours.
The consensus estimate for US GDP growth in 2014 has collapsed. 4 months ago, the world of serial extrapolators and mean-reverters prognosticated that 2014 GDP would reach the lofty heights of 2.9%. Today - on the heels of numerous micro- and macro-fundamental realities, consensus US GDP growth for 2014 has been marked down to 1.7%. Is it any wonder US equity markets are within 1% of their all-time highs?
If the market's are not 'rigged' by HFT teasers front-running any 'real' flow that happens to take its chances on the public stock exchanges, then please - - someone explain this chart.
Those who own the resources and influence the political control of those resources are the New Nobility in a pernicious Neofeudalism enforced by the very government that claims to serve the debt-serfs and tax donkeys.
It appears the US open this morning was accompanied by a significant long-capitulation that slammed "most shorted" stocks down almost 3%. Since then, thanks to a USDJPY liftathon, "most shorted" stocks have levitated back to unchanged and dragged the broad equity markets back up too. The question is - now that the flush has been unwound... what happens to the market?
The dirty little secret that everyone (and we mean everyone) wants to act as if it no longer exists is: These prices are only representative of anything worth value if they can be sold. We are now at heights where even the so-called “Uber Bulls” are beginning to get a little nervous in the hoof. For just who is going to buy when the first major dip goes stampeding past? There’s no true true economic recovery picture to be bought.
In what was practically a carbon copy of yesterday's 10 Year auction, moments ago the Treasury sold $13 billion in 30 Year paper which priced at 3.369%, the lowest yield since June of 2013 when it hit 3.355, even if it meant a modest 0.9% bps bps tail to the 3.360% When Issued. The internals were both good and bad: bad in that the Bid To Cover came at 2.40, modestly lower than last month's 2.69 but better than the TTM average of 2.38. Good in that the Indirect takedown of 53.25 was the highest since we began keeping records in 2008, and continues the trend seen last month in which Indirects bought more than half of the auction. This strength, however, was offset by a drop in the Direct bid by nearly half from last month's 21.8% to 11.1%, leaving a modest 35.7% to the Dealers to promptly flip back to the monetizing Fed.
Earlier this summer, IMF bureaucrats went to Sofia, Bulgaria to study the country’s economic progress; and roughly a month ago, they released an official report which stated, among other things, that Bulgarian banks are “stable and liquid.” Then 2 weeks later, there was a run on two of the nation’s largest banks (as we discussed at length here). But it's not just the IMF...the EU Commission soothingly announced that "the Bulgarian banking system is well-capitalized and has high levels of liquidity compared to its peers in other member states." The lesson here is clear: The people in charge of regulating the system and making these proclamations about bank safety are totally clueless. Clearly, Bulgaria (and Portugal) shows that the entire system can really be a bunch of smoke and mirrors.
For the past several weeks it felt as if Bank of America's chief technician, MacNeill Curry (or at least his clients) had an infinite balance sheet to fund relentless P&L losses, resulting from his daily recommendation to short the 10 Year, which contrary to the best wishes of the Fed and the sellside penguins constantly refused to go lower and validate the "economy is getting better" thesis. Today, even his TBTF balance sheet finally ran out, and moments ago he finally capitulated, and was stopped out on his TYU4 short.
Pure Madness: Revenueless, Assetless CYNK Soars Over $5Bn; Bigger Than GameStop, Cablevision, Jabil CircuitSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/10/2014 - 12:10
Well that escalated quickly... CYNK Technologies - which we first exposed to the world here - has gone from dumb to dumber. "Traders" just bid CYNK at $18.50 $20.32 this morning (on less than 100,000 shares) meaning this asset-less, revenue-less shell of exuberance now has a market cap over $5.4 $5.9 billion. That leaves CYNK more "valuable" than all of the following companies...
- PORTUGAL'S BANKS MORE CAPITALIZED, MORE TRANSPARENT NOW: COSTA
- PORTUGAL TO OUTPERFORM ITALIAN BONDS ON MACRO OUTLOOK, MS SAYS
- BARROSO SAYS FOREIGN INVESTOR CONFIDENCE IN PORTUGAL INCREASING
- PORTUGAL OUTLOOK REVISED TO STABLE AT S&P
Broad European stocks are down over 4% in the last few days but that hides the carnage among the most exuberantly excited names on the way up. Portugal, Spain, and Italy have been battered in the last few days (despite everyone explaining how Portugal is so small, contained etc..). Portuguese bond spreads spiked 25bps today as the central-bank-inspired coupling of sovereign-health and banking-system stability drag each other down (Spain and Italy jumped 9bps higher in risk). European bank stocks have cratered and are now negative year-to-date.
On the heels of Wal-Mart's dismissal of the "great" jobs report, The Container Store CEO yesterday explained how Q1 weakness was "not just the weather" but an overall 'funk' in consumer spending. Last night we had a second firm - the much more integrated into the housing recovery, Lumber Liquidators - come out with some heresy about Q2 bounce backs and the weather..."demand strengthened for 30 days beginning in mid-March. But in May demand slowed and further weakened in June. We were somewhat surprised by the magnitude of the continued weakness in the stores designated as impacted by weather in the first quarter." There goes Q2 GDP...