What Keeps Wall Street Up At Night (Quarterly Edition)

Tyler Durden's picture

Two quarters ago it was the muni implosion, last quarter it was sovereigns blowing up (again). Now, it's oil, and the stench of out of control inflation sending precious metals to daily all time record highs, that is keeping Wall Street up at night (yet doing nothing than seemingly providing one after another "buy the dip" opportunity). Every quarter the prevailing investing and spec opinion focuses on one key bogeyman in the wall of worry and refuses to let go, even as, or particularly because of, the Fed, in conjunction with the HFT-controlled market, sells vol to the point where everyone pretends risk is under control. Of course, it isn't, and neither the muni crisis has gone away, nor the threat of sovereign insolvency, nor pervasive inflationary threats (just buy gas in Europe). However, the fact that the Fed systematically takes on one conventional wisdom risk factor after another, and sells into every vol rally, almost certainly via curve exposure, but arguably via equity volatility indices as well (see thought by Artemis Capital on the subject), masks the symptom of an underlying systemic collapse until the market focuses on the next hotspot, which the Fed may or may not be able to resolve. And since we have finally moved on the biggest Fed artifact of all: inflation (and rampant one at that), the Fed's ability to extend and pretend the inevitable correction that needs to happen to push oil down to sub-$100 may be now coming to an end.

Here is how Bank of America's clients determine what the key concerns were for the past two quarters:

Below is Jeffrey Rosenberg's commentary on how and why Wall Street has now made it into a habit of selling into any fear drop.

Our quarterly survey of largest risk to the outlook has been a good source of contrarian trading strategies. From last autumns’ deflation concern (contrarian viewpoint: interest rates should rise), to December’s US municipal risks (contrarian viewpoint: credit risk overstated) to today’s concern over rising oil prices (contrarian viewpoint: oil market uncertainty overstated), each of these concerns have failed to deliver a significant asset price correction. The last one – oil market concerns – still lies ahead of us in terms of the lagged impact of rising gasoline prices on consumers, but the market’s fears (as judged by implied volatility in options) indicates improvement in confidence that a “super spike” can be avoided eroding one of our original motivations for a tactical underweight recommendation.

In other words, BTFD until BTFD as a strategy fails spectacularly and the trade of aligning with the Fed always and forever no longer works.

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stormsailor's picture

what is keeping wall street up at night is all the blow and hookers from bonuses and qeii

augie's picture

pitty them, its all they have.

Ahmeexnal's picture

GLOBEX just opened and silver drops from 48 to 42 USD/ozt.

Time to get rid of worthless fiat crappola.


Urban Roman's picture

Wonder how long 42 will last. Minutes?

Will they cancel trades below 45?

Ahmeexnal's picture

JPM smells like a rotting corpse.

And in other news -while we are on the zombie subject- Mayor Bloomberg calls for illegal mexicans to jumpstart Motor City:



He should know that Detroit is not the only zombie town in the US.

How long before he calls upon illegal mexicans to "jumpstart Wall Street"?

stuman's picture

Then we'd have to build a wall around Detroit and patrol it with helicopters and eventually send in Snake Plissken to "chew bubblegum & kick ass!" Errr...I mean Roddy Piper ;)

JR's picture

“And if I were the federal government, assuming you could wave a magic wand and pull everybody together, you pass a law letting immigrants come in as long as they agreed to go to Detroit and live there for five or 10 years. Start businesses, take jobs, whatever.” – New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg

 Whatever? Instant welfare.

LMAO's picture

This shit moves so fast, I'm starting to get a feeling that the intermediate bottom is in at 42,65  BTFD



EscapeKey's picture

CFTC approved market manipulation at its finest.

Jay_Son's picture

No, the COMEX margin increase was an attempt to reverse the manipulation that caused silver to go parabolic.  Even if silver was undervalued, 200% in 9 months, and 70% over the last 3 months doesn't raise red flags?  Come on.  Unless the dollar turns to confetti in the next few months, this bubble is over.

Ahmeexnal's picture

I have news for you. The dollar turned to confetti 40 years ago.


Bicycle Repairman's picture

Utter BS manipulation.  BTFD.

Captain Benny's picture

People probably think you're joking.  Being truth I find it quite funny.

jbc77's picture

Whats going on with silver boys? That is one hell of a drop at the open.

ursus.peracto's picture

Go ahead and hold your breath.

Popo's picture

One should mention all the thousands of Wall Street funds that are long oil and metals. They are hardly losing sleep.

....Although, they are definitely the boys with the hot Latvian talent and the mirror on the table.

Highrev's picture

Maybe they'll start selling vol on inflation as well.

ursus.peracto's picture

Nice call...one that I'd buy.

Captain Benny's picture

Here is what keeps the Fed up at night... fear of an all out media campaign blitz encouraged by Ron Paul to AUDIT THE FED.



They're soliciting contributions to help pay for it right now, I'm sending 3 ounces worth of silver their way.  I hope others care enough to help spread an education about the Fed's crimes to the proles...  I personally write "END THE FED" on every reserve note I spend.

Interestingly, I just wrote it on a dollar bill stamped with "Ron Paul For President" ... probably from the last campaign.  Awesome to see others contributing to the defacing of the criminal bank's debt notes....

FunkyMonkeyBoy's picture

Ron Paul is a wet lettuce. If he was going to do something, he would have done it by now, after all he is "chairman of the House Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy".

Ron Paul offers the same 'hope and change' that obumma did...

... hope is all they offer, because there is zero chance of change for good. All bought and paid for scum.

Captain Benny's picture

I don't think the Fed will ever be audited.  But I think its "hope" that the proles can latch onto and then start asking questions "What is the Fed?"  "What do they do?"  "Can we do without them?"  and the list goes on.  I have zero faith that the Fed will ever be audited, but I do have faith that this "campaign" to audit the Fed will help to awaken a few sleepers inside the Matrix...  Three ounces for the chance to awaken three sleepers is worth it for me.  In reality, probably far more will be impacted by my small donation.

Libertarian777's picture

he may be the chairman but he doesn't have unlimited power.

He's already submitted bills to audit the fed, which was subsequently watered down by other congressman.

He has proposed numerous bills that have not even made it to the floor to be voted on.

Clearly you don't understand how the republic works.

Although Obama is terrible as a leader, except for veto'ing bills and executive orders, he also doesn't have as much power as you'd like to think. It's the 535 senators and congressmen who propose, debate and vote on the bills.

Ron Paul is one man against 534 other representatives.

Who passed Obamacare? Obama? actually no, it was voted on by a majority of congressmen. Although Obama didn't veto it, he couldn't pass it by himself.

whstlblwr's picture

It's right, but as chairman, Paul can schedule hearings. Bring light to issue. Why no hearings?

Manthong's picture

They will get to the bottom of the Fed alright, but it won't be an audit.

It will be an autopsy.


ZFiNX's picture


By the same will we will not have our silver taken but from our cold dead hands,

the plutocrats will not have their power taken.

Saxxon's picture

Funky, close but more like Paul is 'maintained' like a pressure escape valve or a toothless lion in the circus.

Lndmvr's picture

RP said he wouldn't end the Fed on Fox. He's either scared or pandering.

CrockettAlmanac.com's picture

Why haven't you ended the Fed?

Lndmvr's picture

Cause I'm just the quiet guy you pass on the street, opening doors for women, talking to the men who want to talk about whatever. Quiet survivalist that will step up when necessary. Cutting grass for old folks for free. You'd never notice me. Till you do.

Captain Benny's picture

I think Ron Paul is a bright enough guy that he knows what it means to "end the fed"... it means political suicide and also somehow commit suicide with not one, but two bullets through the back of his skull.  The "end the fed" campaign will not originate from inside the legislative branch.

No, I think Ron Paul knows that the only way to end the fed is to let the collapse happen.  He's pretty adament about having the laws changed to ensure that we can escape from the Fed when it does happen.  ie: His tax policy... or should I say ZERO-tax on silver and gold.

Moe Howard's picture

Strange, I have a $20 right here in my wad stamped BACKED BY NOTHING in red right under In God We Trust and a $100 stamped END THE FED! in greenback green. Must be a trend. Thanks for the link, I just got an email from Campaign 4 Liberty to contrib $17.76 but they forgot to put a link in it. All righty then....

smlbizman's picture

i stop at the liquor store today...give the guy a twenty..he test it with his magic pen...it passed..the guy gave me back a 5...than i told him the 5 he was giving me was counterfiet money....

ursus.peracto's picture

Audit what? Piles of fucking paper?

The U.S. economy is based on fucking paper backed with bullets and bombs.

whstlblwr's picture

I don't understand why post is here. I'll delete again because makes no sense.

FIAT_FixItAgainTony's picture

hey captain, i'll join you on that good idea.

we can get the word out to the sheeple and piss off the fed at the same time when the "defaced" inflated notes come back at half buying power.

like monty python said:

Arthur: "good idea o lord"

God: "of course it's a good idea"


Id fight Gandhi's picture

Hard not to notice the constant gold and silver bash articles every day. Whole presentations Bout the commodity angle but miss the fiat failing reality.

equity_momo's picture

I'll be betting on a trade war then that collapses global demand/gdp and ushers in the great wave of deflation we are inevitably going to get.  Looking at that poll i cant be wrong.

css1971's picture

Does this help?


Just look how big those deflations are... Um... Wait, the chart says something else.

equity_momo's picture

It is possible for the value of the dollar AND asset prices to fall. And that is just what is going to happen. So far youve only be lucky enough to deal with the deflationary dollar. The end of this system will deal with both. Soon you will marvel at how you can buy brand new Ford Shitbangs for 5 grand. It will be a shame your job only pays 5 grand a year though and the Dows at 3k.

Saxxon's picture

There will be no audit and no default, as such; also no PM confiscation. Never, ever.

I am all-in short and simply fixing to grit my teeth to the close tomorrow because I am again pessimistic of yet another gap open and low-volume run. Why?  Why not. And had Khadaffy been whacked, we would gap +200 on the DOW. Why not.

Short, the last two years, has been nothing but folly. Like hoping a dictator whom we have no reason to be gunning for, doesn't get killed. I am near capitulation on short positions for the duration.


topcallingtroll's picture

Silver seems to be the only possible short term short position right now. I agree you cant possibly short anything else from here except possibly oil.

It is a shitty market when everything is a speculation, even guaranteed accounts or cash under the mattress.

css1971's picture

Every quarter the prevailing investing and spec opinion focuses on one key bogeyman

It's all the same bogeyman.


scratch_and_sniff's picture

Buy gas in Europe? I got a letter through the door 2 days ago and couldnt beleive what i was seeing; a 40% increase in one price jump. I am not kidding, 40% !! , and the consumer body let them get away with it...i feel sorry for the elderly, because they got pay-as-you-go gas meters, and now they cant change supplier. Sick.