August 8th, 2011
Just in case anyone wonders what is eventually coming to our own shores, here is a live webcast.
Back on May 17, Zero Hedge proposed a simple trade idea, something what we called the "Great QE Unwind" trade. The trade consisted of two legs: "long Utilities and Consumer Staples while shorting Industrials and Consumer Discretionary, leaving Financials alone." We unwind this trade today, one day ahead of the announcement of QE3, as it has since returned an absolute +3.7%, and a whopping return 18.7% over the broader S&P index. Obviously this is for the less than three month period the trade was held, and not annualized. We now unwind the trade. To those who piggybacked on this trade that not only protected capital, but generated absolute return, congratulations! To everyone else, better luck next time.
COFFEE RESTRICTION'S IN FORCE...
Guest Post: So Why Is The Initial Reaction Of The S&P Downgrade Of Treasuries For Treasury Bond Prices To Go Up?Submitted by Tyler Durden on 08/08/2011 14:59 -0400
The S&P downgrade was not as much a comment on the numbers of credit service as a comment on the political process. The political process is about confronting the probability of a hyper-inflationary collapse of our currency if fiscal irresponsibility, entitlement spending and bank bailout mentality are not addressed. If the credit rating firms had continued the charade of AAA quality, it would merely enable the not sustainable march toward hyper-inflation. Ultimately, the S&P downgrade of Treasuries is a downgrade of all dollar denominated assets. If we can print dollars to pay Treasury debt, it is the currency that is at risk. A nominal default of Treasury obligations is not going to happen. Yet, a real default as a currency event is the risk. In order to save the currency, we must sacrifice the money center banks. A sacrifice of the international banking system is a deflationary event. For Treasuries to rally in a flight to quality as a market reaction to their own downgrade is a flight to the relative safety that remains. Anticipation of the deflationary political discipline of an S&P downgrade is the rational reaction of capital flight away from securities propped up by the reflationary status quo.
With QE3 to be announced tomorrow, is anyone really surprised that we just experienced Flash Crash part 2? After all Bernanke has to be thanked for rescuing the Russell 2000. Dow dropping as much as 600, BAC down 22%, Citi down 21%, and everything else bidless, Level two does not work... Total market shut down.
Ancient Greek mythology tells the tale of Odysseus, the heroic king of Ithaca whose 10-year journey home after the Trojan War became one of the world’s most famous epics. At one point in the journey, his ship was heading straight for two deadly hazards– on one side was Scylla, a six-headed monster disguised as a giant rock, and on the other side was Charybdis, a sinister whirlpool born from the sea god Poseidon. The perils were close enough to pose an inescapable threat to ships passing through, forcing the captain to choose between the two evils. A Latin proverb from this story, “incidit in scyllam cupiens vitare charybdim” (he runs on Scylla, wishing to avoid Charybdis), is now “between a rock and a hard place” in modern English. This is exactly where the entire world finds itself right now. With confidence vanishing, markets panicking, and entire nations going bankrupt, ultimately there are no good solutions… and thinking people need to understand some simple truths about the situation...
Update: the meeting scheduled for 1:00 pm has been delayed until 1:30 pm. Summary: "It's all the sandtrap at 18's fault"
The daily teleprompted appearance you have all been waiting for. Summary: "It's all S&P's fault"
A snapshot of the US Afternoon Briefing covering Stocks, Bonds, FX, etc.
We though we had seen it all... Then JPM's Colin Fenton came out with a prediction of gold hitting $2500 by year end. That's right: JP Morgan... $2500...."Gold and sugar have potential to run a lot higher. It has been clear for weeks that the prompt CMX gold price has been building in a rising probability of a reflaring of financial crisis, gaining by 9.7% since June 30 as the MSCI World Equity index dropped by 10.1%. The correlation in daily price changes between these two assets has dropped to –0.09 from +0.29 over the prior year. Gold’s correlation against TIPS has doubled to 0.35 from 0.18. Against Italian and Spanish 5-year sovereign CDS prices, the gold correlation has moved to 0.27 and 0.32, from 0.07 and 0.04, respectively. Before the downgrade, our view was that cash gold could average $1800 per oz by year end. This view will likely now prove to be too conservative: spot gold could drive to $2500 per oz or higher, albeit on very high volatility." Funny, when discussing yesterday's Goldman upgrade of gold we said: "Next up: everyone else." Little did we know... Also, it is unclear if Blythe precleared this client note. But at this point it probably does not matter.
More shortly. And yes, just as ZH predicted an hour ago.
With Bank of America getting taken to the woodshed, we can only hope that Paulson managed to sell all of his stock in the name, or otherwise just like Bruce Berkowitz is organizing a call to defend Bank of America on Wednesday, Bank of America would have to organize a call today to protect JP from his LPs. Alas, Bank of America is just the start of Paulson's problems. For a just as big problem we shift our attention to the next worst bank in America, Citigroup, which as the excerpt below demonstrates, was a bragging point in the firm's January 2011 letter. Alas, there is little to brag about these days. Which is why we wish to caution investors to be vary careful with liquidation-like selloffs in gold. Should D-Day strike at Paulson, the firm's multi-billion GLD "gold share class" will likely have to be sold very fast to preserve liquidity. When that happens we may see a 20-30% correction in gold in one day. This is just a theoretical warning, and we hope to have some sense of when, if at all, it would take place. But just something to keep in the backs of your heads...
A snapshot of the US Afternoon Briefing covering Stocks, Bonds, FX, etc.
Here Comes TARP 2: Bank Of America Implodes, At $6.87, BAC CDS Up 20% To 260 bps As Bankruptcy ContemplatedSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 08/08/2011 11:30 -0400
With Bank of America investors finally realizing it is game over for the company as a going concern, at this point there are just two options for Brian Moynihan: the spin off of CFC as a bad bank, backstopped by the Fed, or, well, Chapter 11, which for a bank is essentially liquidation (and with CDS trading up 50 bps to 260 a bankruptcy seems increasingly inevitable). It also means that another TARP is on the way. And once America realizes that another several trillion have to be put into its insolvent banking sector, it will get quite violent. The biggest irony: it is AIG which takes down the financial system for the second time after its lawsuit against BAC filed last night kills Bank of America.
Since the stock market is in the news (perhaps as a result of trillions of dollars/euros/yen/yuan/quatloos having suddenly vanished from millions of accounts), it seems timely to examine the key correlation between stocks and the U.S. dollar. As I have often noted here, this "big picture" correlation is a simple see-saw: when the dollar is scraping bottom, stocks are at their highs, and when the dollar is up then stocks are tanking. At the risk of alienating chart-averse readers, I've marked up the charts of the S&P 500 (SPX) and the U.S. dollar index (DXY). For those who aren't going to look at the charts, what they suggest is that there are really only three possibilities in play:
A. Stocks go up and the dollar drops to new lows
B. Stocks fall and the dollar rises significantly, a pattern that has repeated several times since 2007
C. The see-saw breaks and stocks and the USD rise or fall together.
And..... the idiots are back in charge.
- GREEK SECURITIES REGULATOR BANS SHORT SELLING FROM AUG 9
- GREEK SECURITIES REGULATOR BANS SHORT SELLING FOR 2 MONTHS
No seriously, it will work this time. We promise.
Goodbye Greek stock market. For a case study of what happens next, check out Vietnam.