• Sprott Money
    03/27/2015 - 04:54
    At first glance, the title to this commentary seems facile, especially to those readers in higher income brackets. The reality, however, is that “investing in food” is a risk-free means of generating...

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Greek Finance Minister Praised By FT In 2010 As Europe's "Top Politician" Is Now A Convicted Criminal

Back in 2010, a panel of Financial Times "experts" was asked to rank Europe's finance ministers. Nineteen European finance ministers were judged. Greece's then finance minister George Papaconstantinou was found to have the best political skills among the 19 EU ministers and got an over 8th rank overall. Specifically, as Keep Talking Greece reported then, the FT said Papaconstantinou  had "the best political skills after displaying “panache” in his handling of the country’s economic crisis." That was then, this is now: Yesterday a special court found him guilty of fabricating a Swiss bank account document and  handed him a one-year suspended prison sentence.



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Fed Now Sees Only 0.2% GDP Growth In Q1

From almost 2.5% GDP growth expectations in February, The Atlanta Fed's GDPNow model has now collapsed its estimates of Q1 GDP growth to just 0.2% - plunging from +1.4% just 2 weeks ago. The reality of plunging capex and no decoupling is starting to rear its ugly head in the hard data and as the sun warms things up, weather will start to lose its ability to sway sentiment. While sell-side consensus has dropped (Goldman, Morgan Stanley, and Barclays all cut today following Durable goods), it remains unable to quite accept the reality of massively weaker than expected macro data evident everywhere (except in the soft-survey PMI data).



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Banks Reclassify Quarter Trillion In Securities Ahead Of Rate Hike

Banks have reclassified a quarter trillion in assets in order to avoid the negative effects of an impending rate hike cycle. In the end, investors would be wise to remember that something is only worth what someone is willing to pay you for it. 



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WTI Ignores Large EIA Crude Build, Gains on Dollar

Dollar dumpage is trumping fun-durr-mentals once again as WTI crude surges back to the highs of the day after its post-inventories plunge... The Algo correlation trades are all breaking down as carry comes undone...



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Nasdaq Gives Up Post-FOMC Gains, Trannies Tanking

Across the board stocks are getting slammed as NASDAQ just joined Trannies in the red post-FOMC... we're gonna need another FOMC meeting...



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European Bond Market May See Nasdaq 2000 Style Collapse, AXA's Haley Says

According to AXA’s Nick Hayes, the EGB bubble may end in a 2000 Nasdaq-style collapse. "The comfort with which investors are embracing negative yields is similar to behavior of those who had been underweight technology stocks in 1999 before rushing in."



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What Greece Owes, And More Importantly - When!



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WTI Tumbles After Crude Inventories Rise For 11th Straight Week - Longest Streak On Record

Crude prices rallied this morning - on the back of absolutely nothing - ahead of this morning's DOE inventory/production data. Following last night's bigger than expected 4.8 mm barrel API inventory build, DOE reports a huge 8.17mm barrel build (against expectations of a 4.91mm build) - the 11th consecutive week and longest streak on record. Cushing inventories rose for the 16th consecutive week, up 1.91mm barrels (against a 2.1mm barrel build expectation). Crude production hit a new record high. Oil prices are giving back this morning's gains...



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President Obama Explains Why Life's "Better With Obamacare" -Live Feed

Some folks were propagandizing... Life's #BetterWithObamacare... because what else would you do with your low gas price savings...



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Tunisian Terror Attack Suspects Trained In U.S. "Liberated" Libya

Libya has turned into a complete and total disaster zone/terrorist training camp ever since America and its allies decided to liberate it. While certainly not perfect under Qaddafi, it was an infinitely better place before NATO intervention than after. Not only that, but the entire justification for the “freedom” delivered to it by Western powers was, naturally, based on lies and propaganda.



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The Tried-And-True Blueprint For Raising Taxes

As the global economy slides into recession and the U.S. economy catches a cold, the blueprint for raising taxes will be dusted off in every state.



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"Damaged" Black Box Holds Only Hope For Explanation Of Germanwings Mystery Crash

"Seeing the site of the accident was harrowing," said Lufthansa's CEO yesterday after the mysterious crash of the Germanwings Airbus A320 with 150 people aboard as local reporters said of the scene, we "can't even identify anything that looks like a plane.". But today, investigators are no further forward in understanding the reason for the unexplained accident. As NBC News reports, some Germanwings crew members have refused to fly until an explanation is found and the discovery of the "slightly damaged" black boxes is hoped to hold the key to explain the lack of communication from the crew, rapid descent, and apparent cessation of the un-override-able fly-by-wire auto pilot.



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Durable Goods Orders Drop And Miss In Worst Run Since Lehman

For the 3rd of the last 4 months, Durable Goods Orders fell and missed expectations (the worst run since Lehman). A 1.4% drop (against expectations of a 0.2% rise) is made worse by downward revisions of the last month's modest bounce. Across the board the numbers are a disaster - Ex-Trans fell 0.4%, Ex-defense fell 1%, Capital Goods Shipments fell 1.4% with capital goods ex-air dropping a stunning 7.6% YoY. Paging negative Q1 GDP print expectations...



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Frontrunning: March 25

  • ECB Tells Greek Banks Not to Boost Exposure to Athens Government’s Debt (WSJ)
  • Search teams probe wreckage of jet in French Alps (Reuters)
  • Flight Recorders Offer Best Hope of Explaining Jet’s Fatal Drop (BBG)
  • Yemen Houthi militia sweeps toward Aden in threat to president (Reuters)
  • In Nigeria, Oil Price’s Slide Deters Theft (WSJ)
  • Saudi Arabia building up military near Yemen border (Reuters)
  • Quant Who Shook the Financial World Tries More Humble Approach (BBG)
  • Executive Pensions Are Swelling at Top Companies (WSJ)


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Without Buyback Back Up, Futures Fail To Find Fizzle

After three days of unexpected market weakness without an apparent cause, especially since after 7 years of conditioning, the algos have been habituated to buy on both good and bad news, overnight futures are getting weary, and futures are barely up, at least before this morning's transitory FX-driven stop hunt higher. Whether this is due to the previously noted "blackout period" for stock buybacks which started a few days ago and continues until the first week of May is unclear, but should the recent "dramatic" stock weakness persist, expect Bullard to once again flip flop and suggesting it is clearly time to hike rates, as long as the S&P does not drop more than 5%. In that case, QE4 is clearly warranted.



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