May 4th, 2016
One year ago, SunEdison was the darling of the hedge fund world. It is now bankrupt. Moments ago, Jim Chanos revealed that (in addition to Tesla) he is also short Elon Musk's SolarCity, sending the stock sliding. But what is the bear case? Courtesy of Axiom's Gordon Johnson, here are some very specific reasons why Chanos may once again have a home run on his "short" hands.
Following the denial in February that this action is in any way about reducing cash, Mario Draghi has made his decision: ECB ENDS PRODUCTION AND ISSUANCE OF €500 BANKNOTE. And just like that the second highest denominated European bank note in circulation is dead, driving everyone into the CHF1000 Bill, and implicitly weakening the euro.
Porkflation is a very delicate, and very concerning issue for China. The massive amounts of layoffs that China has experienced as a result of a slowing economy has already lead to some social unrest, and pork prices exploding higher for those unemployed will only add fuel to that simmering fire. As such, Beijing has announced that it will release 3.05m kilograms of frozen pork reserve into the capital's market between May 5 and July 4, in an attempt to lower prices. The impact on prices may be short lived however, as China may not have the sows to be able to continue the subsidy.
Like it or not, on some level the entire system is rigged to a degree and apparently the majority of American citizens now agree. According a new study conducted by Reuters News, “more than half of American voters believe the U.S. system is rigged.”
Update: as expected, Kasich's announcement will be that he is indeed suspending his campaign, and with that Trump is the official presidential candidate of the Republican party.
In recent weeks ISIS has been become far more brazen in its threats against US targets, and just last week released out a "hit list" which allegedly had the personal details of 3,600 New Yorkers whom it "wanted dead." And while it is unknown if there is a terrorist link, the threat may have hit closer to home for residents in Rosebud, Texas when the McLennan County Sheriff’s office and a bomb squad used a water cannon to breach a suspicious device found under a bridge Tuesday night.
"Pakistan Is At Best A Frenemy" - Washington Pulls The Plug On Subsidizing F-16s For India's NeighborSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 05/04/2016 11:15 -0400
"They take our money, take our arms and laugh in our face. Pakistan is at best a frenemy, part friend and a lot enemy."
The days of JP Morgan controlling the silver market may be numbered as a new player in the silver market has arrived. For the past several years, JP Morgan held the most silver on a public exchange in the world. While the LBMA may hold (or did hold) more silver, their stockpiles are not made public. Regardless, JP Morgan held the most silver at nearly 74 million oz (Moz) in its warehouse, up until recently...
Overnight exuberance sparked by lower than expected Cushing build reported by API is fading on the heels of June OPEC headlines of no production limits (and rising Saudi production) heading into DOE inventory data. Crude inventories printed a significantly higher than expected 2.78mm build but Cushing saw a smaller than expected build of 243k. Gaosline surprised with a 536k build (API 1.17m draw) and Distillates saw a smaller than API build of 1.26m barrels. The biggest news was the biggest plunge in US production since July 2015, and yet inventories still rose suggesting that fundamentally this is and has been as much a demand story as one of supply (even as OPEC countries are happy to offset declining US output).
Earlier this week we observed that in what may be Europe's latest mistake, the European Union is about to grant visa-gree travel to 80 million Turks: a key concession that Erdogan obtained as a result of the ongoing negotiations over Europe's refugee crisis which has pushed Turkey into the key player spotlight. And then, overnight, the European Commission officially granted its support to a visa-free travel deal with Turkey after Ankara threatened to back out of a landmark migration deal. It proposed to lift visa requirements by the end of June.
As the avalanche of data comes to an end for today, following factory orders, durable goods final data for March paints an ugly picture of the US manufacturing economy. Not only did Core Durable Goods Orders drop 1.4% YoY - the most since Dec 2015 - but the overall level fell to its lowest since Dec 2013. The 14th straight month of YoY declines has not occurred absent an overall US economic recession, and this is the first 27-month decline since Lehman...
The Manufacturing Recession That Won't Go Away: Factory Orders Rebound From 5 Year Lows, Decline For 17 MonthsSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 05/04/2016 10:14 -0400
In 60 years, the US economy has never suffered a 17-month continuous YoY drop in Factory orders without being in recession. Which begs the question: are we in one now. Moments ago the Department of Commerce confirmed that in March, US factory orders - despite rising 1.1% sequentially and above the 0.6% expected - declined for 17th consecutive month on an annual basis, dropping 4.2% from a year ago.
Despite a modest rise in April's headline Services PMI print to 52.8 (from 52.1) the details under the surface paint a different picture (remaining weaker than its post-crisis average of 55.6). The rate of employment growth was the weakest seen since December 2015 as backlogs of work declined for the ninth consecutive month, which is the longest continuous period of depletion since the survey began in late-2009. ISM Services data also beat expectations, rising to 55.7 despite a drop in business activity and backlogs. As Markit warns, "the fragility of growth is highlighted by inflows of new business rising at a rate only marginally above the post-recession low."
"Money for free! Well not exactly. The Piper that has to be paid will likely be paid for in the form of higher inflation, but that of course is what the central banks claim they want. What they don’t want is to be messed with and to become a government agency by proxy, but that may just be the price they will pay for a civilized society that is quickly becoming less civilized due to robotization. There is a rude end to flying helicopters, but the alternative is an immediate visit to austerity rehab and an extended recession. I suspect politicians and central bankers will choose to fly, instead of die."