• GoldCore
    12/18/2014 - 13:54
    Russia supplies China with hi-tech military hardware. Russia has negotiated two major natural gas deals with China in the last year. China expects to double its gas usage by 2030. From a Chinese...

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The Terrorist Hackers Win: Sony Pulls Release Of "The Interview" Due To Fears Of "9/11-Style Retaliation"

One of the biggest conspiracy theories in recent weeks has nothing to do with the stock market and the Fed, or with HFT manipulation, or with Ukraine's gold, or with who brought down the two Malaysian airliners, but whether the now beyond ridiculous drama surrounding Seth Rogen and James Franco's latest movie, The Interview, which has its very own cast of C-grade characters, including an alleged furious North Korean dictator and his hacker disciples, a mega corporation whose servers were hacked releasing the content of thousands of emails into the open, and of course, delighted marketing stuiod execs, has been staged and planned from the beginning. Because the latest development in this soap opera is almost as surreal as today's shocking detente with Cuba: as the Hill reports, America's top five movie theater chains have decided to pull the Sony Picture's comedy "after cyberattackers on Tuesday threatened Sept. 11-style attacks against any theater showing the movie."



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The End Of Exuberance?

"Back in the halcyon days of summer, it seemed nothing could go wrong; but now, ...the uncertainties presently being generated have the potential to undermine two crucial kinds of trust – that one must have in the merits of one’s own exposure and that equally critical faith in the reliability of one’s counterparties. If it does, the third great bull run of the 20-year age of Irrational Exuberance could well reach its culmination, after a rally of almost exactly the same magnitude as and of similar duration to the one which ushered it in, all those years ago."



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"A Couple Means Two" - Why This Is Important

Moments ago, after Yellen earlier explained that the Fed may hike rates at any moment, and certainly not only during press-briefing days, she also explicitly, and very unexpectedly, said that the Fed will likely not hike for a "couple" of meetings. And when she was subsequently asked to explain what "a couple" means, she further explained that it means "two." As a reminder, this comes from a Fed chairwoman who had a trial by fire when, fresh after replacing Bernanke, she locked herself in the "6 month" calendar interval. In other words, she knows not to give the market a timing bogey. And still she did so. Which, quite explicitly, means that anything starting with the 3rd meeting, currently scheduled for April 28-29, 2015, and onward is very fair game and the market will be foolish to expect the Fed not to follow through with this warning, a Fed which is already dangerously close to losing all credibility it has.



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Algos Spooked After Yellen Says "Almost All Participants" See 2015 Rate Hike

It was all going well for Janet - stocks were up, crude was down - and then she said...

YELLEN SAYS ALMOST ALL PARTICIPANTS SEE RATE INCREASE IN 2015

Sending stocks back below pre-FOMC levels and sparking a tumble in Gold, a surge in The Dollar, and slip higher in yields.



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Fed Confusion Sparks Crude Chaos; Stocks, Bonds, Bullion Whiplash

Stocks are up and crude oil is down following The Fed's confusing statement. Treasury yields whiplashed lower then higher and are holding slightly lower. Gold did the same - holding slightly above pre-FOMC levels.



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Janet Yellen's Last (Considerably Confused) FOMC Press Conference Of 2014 - Live Webcast

Having added further confusion to the markets by keeping "considerable" and adding "patient", suffered 3 dissents (1 dove, 2 hawks), and explaining that the energy price drop is "transitory", we suspect Fed Chair Janet Yellen will have some 'splainin' to do during today's press conference. Is "patient" longer than "considerable time" and just what (Dow Jones Industrial Average) data is the Fed dependent on now?



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The December "Dots"... Drop

Presenting the quarterly change of the Fed's "dot plot", showing where the Fed thinks the Fed Funds rate will be at the end of 2016. The Fed is so hawkish about the upcoming rate hikes, that since September, when the median dot was at at 2.875%, the dots, "surprisingly", have declined across the board and now have a median of 2.50%.



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Complexity Of Fed Message Resumes Rising: FOMC Words Increase From 707 To 734

Just when you thought it was safe to assume The Fed had any kind of handle on things, they ramp up the confusion level and generate more words than last month to explain their machinations. Though well below the peak confusion levels of September, we hope the trend is not rising again...

 



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No More "Considerable Time" - Meet The New, "Patient" Fed

With expectations that the FOMC would drop "considerable time," ignore foreign market instability, and shrug off HY credit's demise (as they had previously said it was a bubble), the members did not let anyone down...

  • *FOMC SAYS IT CAN BE 'PATIENT' IN APPROACH TO RAISING RATES
  • *FOMC DECLINES TO MENTION RECENT GLOBAL MARKET INSTABILITY
  • *FOMC SAYS PATIENT APPROACH 'CONSISTENT WITH OCT. STATEMENT'
  • *FISHER, PLOSSER, KOCHERLAKOTA DISSENT IN FOMC DECISION

For the 3rd FOMC meeting in a row, equity markets have surged (and decoupled from bonds); we will soon see if history repeats a third time.

Pre-FOMC: S&P Futs: 1988.00, 10Y 2010%, Gold $1195, WTI $57.50



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Surprise... Everyone Was Wrong About The End Of QE

Since the beginning of this year, Wall Street economists and analysts have been consistently prognosticating that following the Federal Reserve's latest bond buying campaign, economic growth would gather steam and interest rates would begin to rise. This has consistently been the wrong call. The recent decline in interest rates should really not be a surprise as there is little evidence that current rates of economic growth are set to increase markedly anytime soon. Consumers are still heavily levered; wage growth remains anemic, and business owners are still operating on an "as needed basis." This "economic reality" continues to constrain the ability of the economy to grow organically at strong enough rates to sustain higher interest rates. This is a point that seems to be lost on most economists who forget that the Federal Reserve has been pumping in trillions of dollars of liquidity into the economy to pull forward future consumption.



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New York Governor Cuomo Does Saudi Bidding, Bans Fracking In NY State

Having missed the entire shale boom, and with heavily-indebted shale companies now scrambling to boost liquidity or else face bankruptcy if crude prices remain at current levels, moments ago - in the latest example of blatant populist pandering -  New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday his administration would prohibit hydraulic fracturing statewide, citing health concerns and calling the economic benefits to drilling there limited.  “I cannot support high-volume hydraulic fracturing in the great state of New York,” acting health commissioner Howard Zucker said, adding that he wouldn’t allow his own children to live near a fracking site. He said the “cumulative concerns” about fracking “give me reason to pause.”



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Why It's So Hard Being A Fed Decision-Maker

"consistency"



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Greek Prime Minister Fails To Get Enough Votes To Elect President, Has Less Support Than Expected

As previewed earlier today, in a vote whose outcome was widely anticipated, Greece's Samaras failed to get enough votes (200) to push through his choice for president, Stavros Dimas.

  • GREECE'S SAMARAS FAILS TO GET VOTES TO ELECT PRESIDENT: TALLY
  • GREECE'S SAMARAS LOSES FIRST OF THREE DEC. VOTES ON PRESIDENT

As a reminder, this is the first of three votes, in which the candidate needs 200 votes. ND and PASOK have together 155 seats in the Parliament, and they expected to win some votes from independent MPs and possibly also some votes from Independent Greeks and Democratic Left MPs. According to Greek media, the government expects to win a total of 162-165 votes for Dimas in the first round. The final vote: 160 For, 135 Against, and 5 Abstain. In other words, Samaras is a crucial 20 votes short of getting his candidate pushed through in 2 weeks, after which follow a messy election that according to recent polls may well be won by left-wing Syriza and its anti-bailout leader, Samaras.



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59% Of Americans Support Post-9/11 Torture – Propaganda, Cultural Sickness, Or Both?

"By an almost 2-1 margin, or 59-to-31 percent, those interviewed support the CIA’s brutal methods, with the vast majority of supporters saying they produced valuable intelligence." Does this confirm the total degeneration of American culture into a collective of chicken-hawk, unthinking, statist war-mongering automatons? Alternatively, does it merely reflect the effectiveness of corporate-government propaganda? Is it a combination of both?



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WTI Crude Spikes Over $59, Up 9% From Lows: Biggest Intraday Swing Since April 2009

No obvious catalyst yet, aside from pure triple-witching anticipatory stop runs, but:

WTI CLIMBS AS MUCH AS 5.5%; BRENT GAINS AS MUCH AS 5.8%

Lifting WTI over $59 and Brent over $63. In fact, the $9 surge from the lows is the biggest move in crude since April 2009!



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