Art Sales Tumble: Christie's Reports 38% Plunge In First Half Sales

There is yet another confirmation that the slowdown in luxury spending continues, nowhere more so than in the world of "luxury" art. As the WSJ reports, Christie said it sold $3 billion in art during the first half of the year, down a third from the same period last year. Contemporary art, long the engine of Christie’s market dominance, was hardest hit, its $788 million in auction sales down 45% from a year earlier. Sotheby's didn't fare better: the New York-based auction house said first half sales dropped a quarter from the year before

Oil Surges After Gartman Exits Crude Long

"this aggressive “bidding” is sufficient to cause us to abandon our modest, one unit long positions in crude immediately upon receipt of this commentary. Being wrong is part of the business we are in; remaining wrong is anathema and the market is about to tell us that we are very, very wrong."

Unexpected Gasoline Inventory Build, Production Rise Spark Crude Chaos

Following last week's surprise Distillates build (and bounce in production) and API's overnight surprise Gasoline build, DOE data this morning was mixed confirming the 2.3mm draw in overall crude inventories (9th weekin a row) but surpringly large builds in both Cushing and Gasoline inventories (expectations were for draws). Oil prices were chaotic - running stops high and low - as algos noted crude production also rose (for the 2nd week in a row).

"The Market's In Conflict" - 11 Red Flags In A Sea Of Green

Having tagged last Thursday's intraday highs, S&P futures are fading this morning (for now), as Bloomberg notes, U.S. stock-market internals are exhibiting conflicting signs as the rally in the S&P 500 Index approaches 10% from the low reached after Brexit.

Massive Fire Breaks Out In 75 Floor Dubai Skyscraper

In what is the latest outbreak in Dubai's recent incendiary "epidemic", shortly before 3pm local time a fire broke out at a 75-floor residential tower in Dubai, the fifth blaze in a skyscraper in the oil-rich United Arab Emirates in recent years.

As Erdogan's Historic Purge Claims 50,000, Turkey Set To Unveil "Emergency Measures"

Erdogan's historic purge of dissidents and adversaries - many of which curiously are to be found in the country's educational system - continues, and according to the latest count a total of around 50,000 soldiers, police, judges, civil servants and teachers have been suspended or detained since the coup attempt. Also today, Turkey said it would announce emergency measures on Wednesday to try "to shore up stability and prevent damage to the economy

IMF Called "Clowns" After Admitting They Fabricated Brexit Doom And Gloom

"The IMF has serious credibility problems. It has been seriously wrong for years. I hope that one of the things that the new government does is push to have some credible people running this institution... rather than the clowns currently running it," exclaimed UKIP MP Douglas Carswell, pointing out Lagarde's legion of fools flip-flop that the British economy will grow faster than Germany and France in the next two years - only weeks after its doom-laden warnings about Brexit.

Morgan Stanley Beats Despite 9% Drop In Revenue, Helped By Cost-Cutting, Strong FICC; Shares Jump

Following the example set by the other banks, earlier today Morgan Stanley, the last big bank to report earnings,  said its profit fell 12% in Q2 on a 9% drop in revenue even as the company weathered volatile markets that affected its investing and corporate clients. The EPS of $0.75, however, beat sharply lowered expectations of $0.60 on the back of sharp cost-cutting measures, pushing its shares up 3% in the premarket.

Frontrunning: July 20

  • Trump Goes on Offense as Republicans Try to Move Past Missteps (BBG)
  • Trump could seek new law to purge government of Obama appointees (Reuters)
  • Behind the scenes, Ryan touts his agenda in Cleveland, not Trump's (Reuters)
  • U.S. Set to Seize $1 Billion in Assets Tied to Malaysian Fund 1MDB (WSJ)
  • 21st Century Fox Negotiating Exit of Fox News Chief Roger Ailes (WSJ)

In Surprising Move, Twitter Permanently Bans Conservative Commentator Milo Yiannopoulos

On Tuesday night, in a surprising move, Twitter permanently banned conservative commentator Milo Yiannopoulos from using its service. Yiannopoulos, an editor for prominent conservative website Breitbart.com, has been known for making provocative statements on Twitter and elsewhere. Twitter said the suspension was part of a wider move to block a number of user accounts for abuse and harassment after Ghostbusters actor Leslie Jones on Monday drew renewed attention to the issue and announced she would quit the social media site.

US Futures Rise To Session Highs, Set For Another Record Open; Global Stocks Jump

After yesterday's positive close in the Dow Jones, which hasn't had a losing day since July 7 and which took the series of consecutive green closes to 8 in a row - the longest stretch since 2013 - the index will look to lock in its 9th green day in a row with futures currently trading well in the green. It's not just the US - equities edged higher in Asia and Europe as positive earnings results from some of the world’s biggest companies countered concern the global economy is losing steam. The dollar strengthened while gold retreated.

Trump 'Close Friend' Unleashes Economic Reality Check: America Is "Lost In The Black Hole Of Entitlement"

"Citizens everywhere are unhappy with their governments and angry with their leaders. They are no longer interested in a political rhetoric that they do not understand and that has no value in their lives. Monetary policy, trade policy technological disruption and the array of issues that make up globalization are simply a parade of unintelligible horribles to the average working class citizen."

If Trump Tries To Remove ISIS, Will He Be Removed?

If Trump really does try to wipe ISIS out – or drastically reduce the power of NATO – will he be risking his own health and well-being? The US is run by corporatist and military entities. Will they hesitate to intimidate or remove Trump if he tries to end ISIS? Western war-interests always need an enemy after all.