June 7th, 2011
Look out below...
Too little, too late?
Greece is not in court. But there is talk of a “higher law,” much as was discussed in the United States before the Civil War regarding slavery. At issue today is the financial analogue, debt peonage.
In a double whammy of bad news from the mainstream media blackouted Fukushima (or perhaps the general population just doesn't care any more) today we learn that not only did The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) double its estimate of the radiation leak in the early days of the Fukushima catastrophe, something we had predicted would happen eventually courtesy of the secretive Japanese government, but that Plutonium from Fukushima has now been found in the town of Okuma, over 1 mile away from the stricken Nuclear Power Plant.
Top-down equities underperformed credit once again as day after day we see the QE2 froth being blown off the weak recovery beer. HY credit is at its widest in six months, financials CDS are starting to crack finally, and sector relative richness in stocks is beginning to sync back to credit.
The media has been replete lately with a variety of different government officials saying that there will not be a third round of Quantitative Easing. Even the great Ben Bernanke himself on April 27th spoke against the possibility of QE 3. This isn't surprising, of course, because in order for something like QE to have the most effect it needs to be, well, a surprise. However, I am throwing down the gauntlet and making the call - there will be Quantitative Easing, and a big one most likely, by the end of summer. There I said it; of course, I have actually been saying this for the last couple of months and it doesn't take much of a real genius to figure it out considering that we are heading into a presidential election year. However, it most likely won't be called QE 3 since the term QE is now politically and socially almost taboo.
Comex Physical Silver Drops To Fresh All Time Low Of 28.8 Million Ounces, 3% Drop Overnight, 30% Drop In Six WeeksSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 06/06/2011 18:40 -0400
When we first started paying attention to the physical ("Registered") silver held in COMEX warehouses on April 20 following the explosion in the silver price, the total amounted to just over 41 million ounces. As of today, a short 6 weeks later, the total physical silver held throughout the entire Comex complex, has dropped by 30% over that period. As of close today, the total amount of Registered silver is now 28,773,375 ounces, a decline of 2.9% overnight from 29,636,513. This is due to a withdrawal of physical from both Brinks and Scotia Mocatta, as well as the ongoing reclassification of 438,708 ounces of Registered into Eligible silver over at HSBC (but wait, it will revert back to Registered any moment... we promise). At this rate of withdrawal and "adjustment", there will be no physical silver left in the entire Comex in about 5 months. At that point, even one delivery intention will send the price of silver to previously unseen levels.
Ladies, don't say we never treat you...
First we had the bread (or some other Oscar Meyer product)...Now comes the circus. Politico reports that Pelosi has just called for a "Weiner Ethics Inquiry." Um... What is there to inquire: the guy sent out pictures of his wiener in clear abuse of his political position (leaving his family drama aside) from a Twitter account that was obviously that of an elected official. It's unethical - period (to spare various other adjectives that come to mind). He should resign immediately. Then again, New Yorkers once again get precisely the representatives that they deserve. A far better inquiry (and thus use of taxpayer capital) would be to discover who else among the political elite does just the same on a daily basis (Weiner is certainly not alone), and has merely not been caught yet.
Quantifying The Treasury's Plunder Of Retirement Accounts: $80 Billion Between The G- And CSRD Funds Since Debt Ceiling BreachSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 06/06/2011 17:48 -0400
Last Thursday we attempted a rough estimation of how much the Treasury has been dipping, or as it is also known "disinvesting", into the G-fund and the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund (CSRDF). Courtesy of Stone Mountain, we now have a definitive number. Even we did not realize how bad it is: in a nutshell, since the debt ceiling breach in mid May, Tim Geithner has replaced one IOU (that of the Fed) with another (that of the Treasury) in the G Fund to the tune of $57 billion, and in the CSRDF of about $22 billion. In other words, retirement funds have seen a "disinvestment" of nearly $80 billion in the past 3 weeks just to make space for further funding of bloated government, defense spending, and healthcare benefits. But don't worry: Tim promises it shall all be well.
Panama is an example of how I see governments moving in the future– like Singapore, Chile, Hong Kong, and may others, Panama is the kind of place that seeks to attract foreigners, to compete for them by providing a number of incentives. Panama does this most pointedly with its retirement ‘pensionado’ program, but there are a number of other such programs. In fact, the country’s immigration law has so many different categories, it’s possible for just about everyone to find a way to move here. In other places, immigration is unfortunately a four letter word. The borderless Schengen area in Europe is on the verge of disintegration as a number of countries in the region begin to put up border checkpoints to restrict the free movement of people (and capital). In the United States, the government has been eager to show that it’s not slacking on the illegal immigration issue. The result has been an increase in the size and scope of its persecution against “undocumented workers” as well as the businesses which hire them. I can just imagine the conversations within the hallowed halls of government: “those who break the law must be punished accordingly…”
RANsquawk Market Wrap Up - Stocks, Bonds, FX etc. – 06/06/11
Watch the pathetic confession from the congressman live here. Nonetheless, a very "regretful" Wiener refuses to step down.
It seems that Europe once again shot its last bullet a few days too early (to use a more polite phrasing than the alternative) with the announcement from last week that the Greek bailout was a done deal. As we speculated, various complications will soon emerge for anyone who cares to read the fine print in the bond indentures which preclude the imposition of Collective Action Clauses, thereby making an enforcement of a "voluntary" maturity extension problematic if anything. Below we present an article that appeared in Handelsblatt in the last hour, which indicates that opposition to the rescue has emerged not only from Slovakia, but from the UK as well. The English is about as garbled as possible thanks to Google translate, but oddly enough far more understandable than the periodic soundbites of outright lies from the pathological troica of Rehn-Junker-Trichet.
"Isn't it pretty obvious that Groupon is a massive Ponzi scheme?--Jose Ferreira (Knewton Blog)