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Aeropostale Files Chapter 11: Latest Retail Bankruptcy After American Apparel, Cache, Wet Seal And Quiksilver

Aeropostale's decline was swift. The brand was established in 1987, went public in 2002, and by 2010 it had a market cap of nearly $3 billion. However, by January 2015 the company of 21,000 employees had posted losses in its last three fiscal years, and with 2015 being the fourth consecutive year of losses, its market cap imploded to just $2.9 million.


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Frontrunning: May 4

  • Donald Trump’s Win Just Latest Tremor Shaking GOP (WSJ)
  • Trump Becomes Presumptive Republican Nominee as Cruz Exits Race (BBG)
  • How 'Stop Trump' failed to halt the Republican front-runner (Reuters)
  • Islamic State seeks news blackout in Mosul as Iraqi army nears (Reuters)
  • U.S. gathers allies on next steps in Islamic State fight (Reuters)

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Three In A Row...

We've now seen three consecutive quarters of net tightening of C&I lending standards in the US (Figure 1, left) and previously whenever this has happened it has ultimately led to a full blown default cycle – albeit with only three cycles of data to examine. The series does tend to exhibit sweeping cyclical tendencies with momentum and is not prone to random fluctuations. So it's a worry that we've entered the net tighten stage and have stayed there for three quarters now.


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Global Stocks Slide As Dollar Continues Rising: Has The "Pricing In" Of Trump Begun

While there was no unexpected overnight central bank announcement unlike yesterday's surprise by the RBA which unleashed volatility havoc in the FX market, which promptly spilled over into all asset classes, overnight stocks around the world saw another leg lower without a tangible catalyst, while EM currencies fell to a one-month low after two Fed presidents raised concern investors had become too complacent in their belief that U.S. interest rate raises will stay on hold. Or perhaps all that is happening is that after ignoring Trump, the market is starting to finally price in the possible reality of the Donald in the White House (although as Jeff Gundlach pointed out, Trump would be a far better president for the economy and the market than Hillary or Bernie).


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License To Steal: Italy’s Highest Court Rules “Theft Not A Crime If Hungry”

Stealing small amounts of food to stave off hunger is not a crime, Italy’s highest court of appeal has ruled. Judges overturned a theft conviction against Roman Ostriakov after he stole cheese and sausages worth €4.07 (£3; $4.50) from a supermarket. Mr Ostriakov, a homeless man of Ukrainian background, had taken the food “in the face of the immediate and essential need for nourishment”, the court of cassation decided. Therefore it was not a crime, it said.


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US Futures Tumble After China Devalues Yuan By Most Since August Collapse

The 'odd' regime shift in the relationship between USDJPY and US equities continues overnight. Following some visible-handedness and follow-through momentum, Yen is weakening against the USD - normally a big flashing green sign for risk-on pajama traders but China's biggest Yuan devaluation in 9 months (since the August turmoil) seems to have stolen the jam out of the bull's donut as US equity futures extend losses, AsiaPac credit risk jumps, and USD strength is weighing on crude prices.


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A Whistleblower Manifesto By Edward Snowden

"Unrestrained power may be many things, but it’s not American. It is in this sense that the act of whistleblowing increasingly has become an act of political resistance. The whistleblower raises the alarm and lifts the lamp, inheriting the legacy of a line of Americans that begins with Paul Revere..."


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Mapping The Most Dangerous Places To Live In The World

Based on the world risk index, which takes into account not only the frequency of natural disasters in each country (known as exposure) but also how well equipped the country is to cope with and recover from the effects of a disaster, The Guardian reports Vanuatu is the riskiest country to live in, with natural disasters on average affecting more than a third of the population each year. If you want to be safe from natural disasters, move to Qatar (the lowest disaster risk country in the world)...


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Ron Paul: "Our Economic System Is Designed To Fail"

"I oppose today’s so-called capitalism. I don’t even like the world “capitalism,” I like “free markets.” But if you say “free markets” and “capitalism” together, we don’t have that. We have interventionism. We have a planned economy, we have a welfare state, we have inflationism, we have central economic planning  by a central bank, we have a belief in deficit financing. It is so far removed from free-market capitalism that it’s foolish for people to label it free market and capitalize on this and say: “We know it’s so bad. What we need is socialism.” That is a problem."


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The Hire That Could Be The Difference Between A Fed Rate Hike And BoJ Helicopter Money

Back in March, Japan's Global Pension Investment Fund appointed Norihiro Takahashi as its new president. Few paid much attention to it, but it may very well end up being one of the most significant events that occurred as we look back in twelve to eighteen months.


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"I Don't Know How To Explain It" - Confused Clinton Can't Explain Own Comments To Coal-Miner

Bo: "I just want to know how you can say you're going to put a lot of coal miners out of jobs, and then come in here and tell us how you're going to be our friend."

Hillary: "I don't know how to explain it.."


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It's About To Get Crazy Again - North Dakota Official Exalts Oil Boom "Is Coming Back With A Rush"

Great News!! As OilJobFinder.com reports, North Dakota's top oil regulator sent out a message the other day to the leaders of Williston: Get Ready. "This is going to come back pretty hard and pretty rapidly," Helms said told members of Williston’s Chamber of Commerce. "And we'll be back running to stay ahead of it." You can smell the desperate hope in his rhetoric...


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