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Caption Contest: America's Independent, Unbiased Media

Because every banana republic democracy deserves its fair, impartial, independent and objective media.



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Inconceivable

A correction of significant magnitude is currently “inconceivable” as the U.S. is now “clearly” on a trajectory towards stronger economic growth. This is the “frame of belief” that pervades in the financial markets currently. However, there are many risks investors should not ignore. Making up losses is much harder than reinvesting stored capital once a clearer picture emerges. While the current belief that a correction of significant magnitude in the markets is "inconceivable," We are not sure that word means what they think it means.



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HFT Firm Athena Engaged In Massive Closing Price Manipulation, Called It "Gravy"

Another day, another HFT firm busted for manipulating the market. Today's participant: Athena Capital, which did what every other algorithmic, HFT firm does - rig the market of course, but at least it had a sense of humor about it: Athena called the market-rigging algorithm that "manipulated the closing prices of tens of thousands of stocks during the final seconds of almost every trading day during the Relevant Period" by the very amusing name "Gravy." But remember: HFTs are really your friend - they just provide liquidity and stuff.



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Falling Oil Prices Could Push Venezuela Over The Edge

"There is nothing good to say about the state of Venezuela’s economy, and this isn’t helping," warns Danske's Lars Christensen as tumbling prices for Venezuela’s oil are threatening to choke off funds (oil is 95% of exports) needed to pay debt.. and that is clear from the collapse of bond prices. The Maduro government desperately needs a rise in oil prices, but Saudi Arabia has so far rebuffed calls for an emergency meeting as it pursues a strategy of waiting out higher cost competitors. OPEC does not plan on meeting until Nov. 27. That is an eternity for a country that is beginning to unravel.



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Did The Saudis Just Get A Tap On The Shoulder?

The US-Saudi "secret" plan that was supposed to crush Putin quickly turned sour when as we reported several days ago, one after another America's own shale plays, which recently entered a very sharp bear market, started appearing on various death watches (case in point today's MHR Second Lien refi which repriced from L+500 to L+750 in minutes). As a result, one wonders: did Obama realize that Russian "costs" which as everyone knows by now include a Eurpoean triple-dip recession, could also very soon include an insolvent US shale industry, and thus may be just a little too much, and, one further wonders, if he is the one who just tapped Saudi Arabia on the shoulder?



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Why The State Has Failed to Reform Our Broken Financial System

Expecting the state to truly reform the nation's engines of financialization is like asking the cocaine addict married to the wealthy dealer to divorce the dealer.



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Peek Inside The Ebola Transport Jet

For a virus that is not airborne, the authorities sure take a lot of precautions to make sure it doesn't enter the common airspace. Well, maybe not when infected nurses fly commercial, but certainly when doctors transport Ebola patients from point A to point B on the world as can be seen in the following documentary of the Ebola transport jet that is used for such purposes. Pay particular attention to the description of the Hepa air filtration system which is "similar to what the Centers for Disease Control and other research places use in their Level Four laboratories. So that air from the aircraft cabin will enter these filters and go through a filtration process that goes down to even smaller than viruses." Because Ebola is not airborne?



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Bob Janjuah's "Interim Capitulation" Line In The Sand

"We all hear nonsense in the course of our lives. Sometimes we talk it. Over the past 48 hours I have heard that this apparently unforeseeable re-pricing of global markets is down to Greece, down to Ebola, and/or down to the fact that the street is not offering much liquidity. However, I think the re-pricing was foreseeable and has – so far – barely anything to do with these first two items. At some point I’m sure the market will accept that the re-pricing is much more about reassessing global growth and deflation expectations and collapsing policymaker credibility. And as for the liquidity argument – which HAS been a factor, in my view – how can this be a surprise? After all, as I see it, one of the cornerstones of regulation over the past five or six years has been to ensure that banks are unable to provide liquidity when clients really need it en masse."



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CDC Grilled By Congress Over Ebola Snafus: Live Feed

The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations will probe into mistakes made in diagnosing Ebola and protecting healthcare workers in Dallas, then discuss how to prevent them from happening at other medical centers across the country. Failures in the response to Ebola are at the center of a Congressional hearing.



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Suddenly, We Have Problems

A rising stock market, like a rising tide, can cover a multitude of interesting and/or scary things. If the finance guys who really know what’s going on are buying, then the disturbing stories that lead each evening’s news must be manageable. And we, in general, must be okay. But let the market fall a bit and those headlines suddenly begin to seem both oppressive and really, really numerous. And maybe we’re not okay after all.



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S&P Turns Green And Market Unbreaks

Curious why DirectEdge "broke" about an hour ago? Simple: to prevent what's left of retail from dumping into the latest momentum plunge.  Sure enough, it succeeded in locking out the weak hands from further dumping, because while it is still legal to sell, why make it illegal if you can just "break" the market itself. So what happened next? Well, the S&P, after dropping 1.5%, just turned green.  And the punchline:

  • EDGX: ALL SYSTEMS NOW OPERATING NORMALLY

The most hilarious, ridiculous, rigged market in the world: priceless. For all other E-mini buying needs, there's PPTcard.



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"Some Falling Knives Are Not Meant To Be Caught"

Yesterday afternoon saw the world and his asset-gathering mum surging to business media TV to calm their commission-paying customers that all-is-well, the worst is over, BTFD, and "see, stocks have made a bottom" as equities surged marginal-call-squeeze-driven into the close. However, they forgot that Europe would open again... As Bloomberg's Richard Breslow notes, "not all falling knives are meant to be caught" noting that the drip, drip of troubling news overcame the desire to pick an extreme and wait for verbal intervention. There is lots of commentary about overbought bonds and oversold stocks but with five different Fed speakers set to jawbone today, we suspect confusion will be the order of the day.



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"Cavalry Won't Be Coming From The East" - China New Loans Jump But Not Nearly Enough, FX Reserves Drop Most On Record

"Higher credit aggregates can temporarily plug the monetary gaps, but ultimately this can only mean slower growth, less rapid price rises, ever more illiquid balance sheets (more 'revenues' tied up in receivables and a bigger gap between 'profits' and actual cash), and more recourse to financial trickery to stay afloat. Looks like lots more 'gold' exports to HK will be needed unless today's announcement that SAFE is to conduct an audit of 'trade finance' in Shenzhen manages to bung up that particular loophole!  One other salient feature to note in China: QIII-14 non-household power consumption was only 2.5% ahead of QIII-13, just more than half of  QII's relatively tardy 4.9% YOY rate. Just like the money numbers, not exactly consistent with  7.x% GDP and 8.x% IP Growth, one might think. If markets are awaiting the Cavalry, they won't be coming from the east - whatever the official data release tries to pretend."



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And The Market Breaks For The First Time Today



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Data Dependent Fed Ignores 'Data' - Bullard Joins Williams In Call For QE4

As yet another fed speaker takes the jawboning lectern today, it is becomingly increasingly clear that The Fed truly has only one mandate - to keep stocks up. While claiming to be "data-dependent", which judging by the general trend of government-supplied data (and President Obama), things are going great; Jim Bullard joins his intervention-prone colleague Williams: BULLARD SAYS BOND PURCHASES SHOULD BE DATA DEPENDENT and SAYS 'U.S. FUNDAMENTALS REMAIN STRONG' but BULLARD SAYS FED SHOULD CONSIDER DELAY IN ENDING QE. So much for data-dependence...



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