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Stocks, Bonds, Commodities Tumble On Durable Goods "Good News", USD Soars

Good news or bad news - you decide? Just remember, Stan Fischer said rate hikes were no big deal...



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Durable Goods Orders Slide YoY 4th Month In A Row Despite Dramatic Upward Revisions

After dramatically upwardly revised data from last month (but following an even more dramatic downward revision to all historical data earlier in the month) - the highly noisy series of Durable Goods Orders printed -0.5% (from +5.1% in March, revised up from +4.0%). Capital Goods Orders (non-defense Ex-Air) beat expectations MoM (printing +1.0% vs 0.3%) and was revised remarkably up from the biggest drop since 2012 to a 1.5% rise in March. Core Capital Goods Orders, however, remains negative YoY for the 4th months in a row. The last time this happened was either a recession, or the Fed unleashed QE3.



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Oil Markets Can’t Ignore The Fundamentals Forever

Storage withdrawals and falling rig count have been the main sources of hope that U.S. tight oil production will fall and that oil prices will rebound. That hope is fading as it is now clear that recent withdrawals from U.S. crude oil storage are because of price, not falling supply, and that the drop in rig count has stalled. Present data, however, suggests that the global over-supply has gotten worse, not better, that overall demand for liquids remains weak, and the world economic outlook is discouraging. At the same time, market movements are not always based on fundamentals. In the long run, however, fundamentals rule suggesting the current price surge is at best premature.



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What's Wrong With This Picture

Before today's announcement, Charter had a market cap of $20 billion, less than half of Time Warner Cable's $48 billion. Or shown another way: a company with 6.3 million total subs is buying a company with 15.4 million subscribers.



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Frontrunning: May 26

  • Developed-Country Growth Slows, OECD Says (WSJ)
  • Charter Agrees to Buy Time Warner Cable for About $55 Billion (BBG)
  • Dollar hits one-month high as periphery woes weigh on Europe (Reuters)
  • IMF Says Yuan No Longer Undervalued Amid Reserve-Status Push (BBG)
  • Hanergy secured $200m loan ahead of solar group stock tumble (FT)
  • Congressional Inaction Threatens NSA Spy Program (WSJ)
  • Germany sees progress on Greece, EU officials to confer on Thursday (Reuters)
  • Hayes ‘motivated by greed’, prosecutor says in Libor case (FT)
  • Whistleblowers Find SEC Rewards Slow and Scarce (WSJ)


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Futures In The Red On Europe Jitters Ahead Of Obligatory Low-Volume Levitation

While yesterday most markets were closed and unable to express their concerns at the very strong showing of "anti-austerity" parties in Spain's municipal election from Sunday, then today they have free reign to do just that, and as a result European stocks are broadly lower, alongside the EURUSD which dripped under 1.09 earlier today, with Spanish banks among the worst performers: Shares of Banco Sabadell, Bankia, Caixabank and Popular were down 1.8 to 2.3% earlier this morning, and while the stronger dollar was a gift to both the Nikkei and Europe in early trading, after opening in the green, Spain's IBEX has since slid into the red on concerns of what happens if the Greek anti-status quo contagion finally shifts to the Pyrenees.



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Chinese Stocks Are Now Up Over 100% Year-To-Date

Another day, another dip to be bought aggressively in China. The only catalyst for moar - aside from "well it was up yesterday" - is the news that the Shanghai-HK Stock Exchange aggregate quota will be abolished, leaving room for more speculative excess to flood into 500%-gainers.  CSI-300 is now up almost 6% since Friday's close and Shenzhen and CHINEXT are soaring back from underperformance yesterday. To round things out on a superlative note, the Shenzhen Composite - which contains all the ponzi-based self-collateralized idiot-makers, is now up over 100% year-to-date. Simply put, you can't keep a bad market down...



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Greece Was 20 Votes Away From Defaulting This Weekend

Over the weekend, in a surprisingly close vote showing just how deeply the ruling Greek Syriza party has splintered, the hard line "Left Platform" a faction within Syriza, proposed that Greece stop paying its creditors if they continue with "blackmailing tactics" and instead seek "an alternative plan" for the debt-racked country. Its motion called for the government to default on the IMF loans rather than compromise to creditor demands, among which a change to value-added tax rates, further liberalization of the labor market and changes to the pension system, including further cuts to pensions and wages. According to the NYT, which reported the vote first, the proposal was narrowly rejected, with 95 people voting against and 75 in favor.



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Chinese State Paper Warns "War Will Be Inevitable" Unless U.S. Stops Meddling In Territorial Dispute

Just to confirm that if the US had hoped it could threaten Beijing into submission and force the Politburo into curbing its expanionist appetit, it was dead wrong, the nationalist Global Times, a paper owned by the ruling Communist Party’s official newspaper, the People’s Daily, said in a Monday editorial that war was “inevitable” between China and the United States unless Washington stopped demanding Beijing halt the building of artificial islands in the disputed waterway.



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How The Saudis Wag The Washington Dog

In real democracies, governments would do what the citizens who put them in office want them to do. The United States and other Western democracies make a mockery of that ideal. But, even so, there are limits; governments cannot defy public opinion on matters of great moment indefinitely. Enabling the Saudi ruling class, and the rulers of the other Gulf states, to direct American foreign policy to the extent that they do, and to get away with whatever they please, is hardly the least of it; but neither is it the only cause for concern.



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Now Hiring In China: Porn Identification Officers

Forget "you'll know it when you see it" - Chinese internet firms are hiring en masse...



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ISIS Planning US Nuclear Attack In Next 12 Months: Report

Three weeks after the first supposed attack by Islamic State supporters in the US, in which two ISIS "soldiers" wounded a security guard before they were killed in Garland, Texas, the time has come to raise the fear stakes. In an article posted in the terrorist group's English-language online magazine Dabiq (which as can be see below seems to have gotten its design cues straight from Madison Avenue and is just missing glossy pages filled with 'scratch and sniff' perfume ads ) ISIS claimed that it has enough money to buy a nuclear weapon from Pakistan and "carry out an attack inside the United States next year."



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Guest Post: Gray Skies And Memorial Day Reflections

True appreciation is measured by our depth of experience and understanding. Today, less than 1 percent of the population reaps the benefits resulting from the service and sacrifice of the less than 1 percent of the population who serve the politicians elected by the majority of people who separate, and have no direct involvement with, these two segments of society. And this disconnection and separation is no accident.



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Meet The Veteran Who’s Been Reduced To Peddling For Change Online To Buy A New Leg

It’s amazing when you think about it– a combat veteran who lost a leg supposedly fighting for ‘freedom’ can’t have the medical procedure he needs because a destructive government bureaucracy.  That’s what freedom means today in America. And nobody’s fighting for it. Soldiers are off risking life and limb for oil companies, banks, and defense contractors. And citizens are distracted with bread and circuses. All the while, government power continues to expand at the expense of the individual.



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Police Takedown 101: U.S. Vs UK

Compare and contrast...



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