France: The Religious War Few Wish To Face

Until a few years ago, the unique recipe for secularism adopted by the French seemed able to guarantee the assimilation of the country's burgeoning number of Muslims, something now, by criminal and terrorist activity in the country, proven a resolute failure. Next year's election results might signal the beginning of the end for laïcité, the long-held French principle of strict prohibition against religious influence in the determination of state policies.

Crude Slammed After Inventory Builds Across Entire Oil/Product Complex

Following API's reported biggest crude build in 4 months overnight, which weighed on oil prices, DOE exasperated the pain by signaling builds across the entire complex. Crude's build of 2.5m barrels (biggest in 3 months) was less than API but more than the expectd 850k draw but Cushing saw a big build and gasoline and distillates both saw builds despite expectations of big draws. As a reminder, US Crude production surged by the most since May 2015 the prior week but fell modestly in the last week. Crude tumbled back to $47 on the print.

Existing Home Sales Crush Recovery Narrative, Plunge Most Since Nov 2015

Following yesterday's 7 standard deviation beat in New Home Sales, Existing Home Sales for July missed expectations by 2 standard deviations dropping 1.64% YoY - the first annual decline since Nov 2015. The blame for this collapse - according to NAR's Larry Yun - is "frustratingly low inventory levels."

French 'Extremist' Screams "Allahu Akbar", Stabs British Woman To Death In Australia

Australian police are investigating a possible "extremist" attack involving a French national who stabbed a British woman to death and injured two others while reportedly yelling "Allahu Akbar." As Reuters reports, the police are looking into possible "mental health or drug misuse" issues and any "indication of an extremist slant or he was radicalized," an officer said, noting the man was in Australia on a valid tourist visa and had no known links to radical groups such as Islamic State.

Trump Slams Clinton Foundation As "Most Corrupt Enterprise In Political History" After Latest Donor Revelations

"It is now clear that the Clinton Foundation is the most corrupt enterprise in political history," Trump said in a statement, slamming Hillary Clinton. "We've now learned that a majority of the non-government people she met with as secretary of state gave money to the corrupt Clinton Foundation. ... It was wrong then, and it is wrong now -- and the foundation must be shut down immediately."

Oil Erases 'Iran Rumor' Rally Following Inventory Data As Angola Supply Soars

Despite denials, yesterday's oil price rally sustained on the back of rumors that Iran was willing to support a production freeze. However, an unexpected crude build overnight from API combined with news that Angola has overtaken Saudi Arabia as the number 1 seller of oil to China (more supply at the margin) has sunk WTI Cride back to $47 - erasing all of yesterday's gains...

Frontrunning: August 24

  • 'Voices under the rubble' after quake hits Italy; at least 38 dead (Reuters)
  • Turkish tanks, special forces launch first major push into Syria to battle IS (Reuters)
  • A Year After Stocks Armageddon, It’s Smooth Sailing for Markets (BBG)
  • Global stocks ease, dollar holds ground as U.S. rate bets abound (Reuters)
  • Merkel Tells Renzi He Can’t Bend Euro Rules to Boost Growth (BBG)

Turkish Tanks Enter Syria As Part Of "Anti-ISIS" Operation

Turkish tanks crossed the border into northern Syria Wednesday as part of "operations to clear ISIS terrorists "from the city of Jarabulus and to protect Turkey from the Islamic State and Kurds, Anadolu News Agency reported.