• williambanzai7
    08/29/2014 - 01:05
    “I call upon all nations to do everything they can to stop these terrorist killers. Thank you. Now watch this drive.” – George W. Bush

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2nd American ISIS Fighter Killed In Syria, CNN Reports

The anti-ISIS operation, Naharawan al-Sham, who distributed images of the first American to be killed fighting for ISIS yesterday, has according to CNN announced a second American was killed in battle representing ISIS. So far, neither ISIS (which often comments on death of its "martyrs") or Naharawan al-Sham has released any images or evidence of the second death.



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No Bubble At All: Jessica Alba's Diaper-Delivery Startup Is Valued At $1 Billion, Prepares For IPO

While today even the pundits are aghast at the latest Snapchat valuation round, which according to the WSJ has Kleiner Perkins inject a laughable $20 million into the private-parts photography service, boosting its valuation to a whopping $10 billion in a clear windowdressing mark-up round, up from $800 million a year ago, even as the actual equity invested into the company is a paltry $160 million or under 2% of said valuation, the true indicator of just how bubbly the second coming of the dot com era has become comes courtesy of none other than Jessica Alba's, yes the actress, own startup: a company launched in 2012 and which makes "non-toxic" diapers (as opposed to toxic diapers?), called the Honest Co., has raised $70 million at a valuation just shy of $1 billion in preparation for an IPO.



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Get Back To Work Mr. Hollande; French Jobseekers Surge To Record High

Despite all the 'promises' French joblessness has risen every month since April 2011... July's jump is the 2nd biggest sinmce April 2013 and at 3.424 million is a fresh record high. One can only hope (though good luck with that) that the new cabinet - same as the old cabinet - will turn things around. With 80% of French people believing that Hollande cannot fix the economy, we suspect things get worse before better...



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Art Cashin Warns Bulls: "History" Not On Their Side

Yesterday, the venerable Art Cashin had 12 simple words of wisdom for 'traders'. Today he has a more direct warning for those watching the levitation and counting their 'wealth effect' gains...



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CBO "Revises" Its 2014 GDP Forecast, Hilarity Ensues (As Always)

The gross, in fact epic, incompetence of the Congressional Budget Office when it comes to doing its only job, forecasting the future state of the US economy, has previously been extensively documented here (and here and here and here). This incompetence is in the spotlight once again this morning with the CBO's release of its latest forecast revision of its original February 2014 projection. And while every aspect of the revised projection has changed, in an adverse direction of course, the punchline is the chart below: the CBO's revised projection for 2014 GDP. It's one of those "no comment necessary" visuals.



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The "European Close" Trade

Will today be 4 in a row?



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Ukraine Accuses Russia Of Imminent Gas Cut-Off, Russia Denies, Germans Anxious

So much for the Russia-Ukraine talks bringing the two sides together as even Germany's Steinmeier could only say it's "hard to say if breakthrough made." Shortly after talks ended, Ukrainian Premier Yatsenyuk stated unequivocally that "we know about the plans of Russia to cut off transit even in European Union member countries," followed by some notably heavy-on-the-war-rhetoric comments. The Russians were quick to respond, as the energy ministry was "surprised" by his statements on Ukraine gas transits and blasted that comments were an "attempt at EU disinformation."



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The Five Cities Most At Risk For The Next Big Earthquake

Damages from the earthquake that hit the San Francisco area this weekend are estimated to be as high as $4 billion. For many cities around the world, particularly coastal cities situated on the geologically active Ring of Fire, an earthquake could be catastrophically destructive. Bloomberg looks at the five cities that are most vulnerable to earthquakes. As Michael Snyder rather ominously warns, the quake last weekend is just the start of the shaking in California... Scientists assure us that it is only a matter of time before "the Big One" hits California.



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ECB Hires Blackrock For ABS-Buying Advice; Crushes Idea Of Upcoming QE

Just in case futures buying algos forgot what the regurgitated "catalyst" that activated the overnight ramp was, the ECB was kind enough to remind everyone that the main event over the past 12 hours was the Deutsche Bank leak that while the ECB will not announce outright QE any time soon, thus denying the rumor spread in the past weak by the likes of Citi and JPM, the formerly preannounced and thus already priced-in (by the EURUSD which was about to take out 1.40 a few months ago) ABS purchase program, or as DB called it "private QE" is about to be unleashed. The ECB confirmed this earlier this morning when it announced that it had appointed BlackRock, the world’s biggest money manager, to advise on developing a program to buy asset-backed securities.  In other words, Europe's largest public-sector hedge fund has just hired the world's largest private-sector hedge fund to "fix things."



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Why Artifice Rules The World: We Have No Choice

There's only one small problem with relying on artifice: we haven't actually fixed what's broken in the real world.



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Feeling Worthless? The 10 Majors Most Likely To Lead To Underemployment

When it comes to worthless majors, it is no secret that "liberal arts" are at the top of the heap. This is the conclusion of not just the real world: a recent survey of 68,000 workers by salary information firm PayScale confirmed as much when asking the humanities majors themselves, and where employees with degrees in fields like English, general studies, and graphic design were among the most likely to report feeling "underemployed" at their current jobs.



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WHO Worker Ebola Infections Mount: Sierra Leone Lab Shut, Senegal Doctor Flown To Hamburg

There is reason to be concerned "about whether the proposed resources would be adequate," warns a Harvard professor as the World Health Organization 'battle strategy' draft calls for more than $430 million to bring the worst Ebola outbreak on record under control. This morning we hear of yet another health worker infected - and being flown home to Hamburg for treatment from Sengal and the WHO has shut a lab in Sierra Leone after health workers became infected. A glimpse at the following 3 charts should have the entire world throwing money at at them...



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The Greatest Depression? German Yields Now Negative Through 2017

Another night, another sell-side bank suggests European QE must be getting closer and, along with more un-de-escalation in Russia-Ukraine, the bid for German bonds continues to surge as Europe's greater depression appears increasingly priced into bonds. Yields on all German bonds out to 3 years are now negative and 10Y Bunds have collapsed to 90.5bps - record lows. This in turn - as we explained here - is dragging Treasury yields lower (10Y 2.36%) but leaves the spread to Bunds at record highs.



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Caption Contest: "He Doesn't Bite" Edition

Wonder why last night's Russian-Ukraine talks were a complete flop (as the WSJ explains here)? The following photo of Belarus president Lukashenko promising to Poroshenko that Putin doesn't really bite, should help explain.



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The DSKing Of Christine Lagarde: IMF Head Formally Charged In Fraud Probe

Ah, the perils of European power politics. A day after France revealed its new government, the person who so eagerly stepped in after DSK's infamous and choreographed fall from grace and the IMF presidency (not to mention his derailed French presidential ambitions, greenlighting Hollande as what would become the worst French president ever), Christine Lagarde is about to be DSKed herself after "someone" clearly has set their sights on the former French finance minister. Several hours ago the news hit that a French court has put Christine Lagarde, head of the International Monetary Fund, under a formal probe for negligence in a corruption investigation dating back to her days as finance minister.



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