Feds Hold Hearing On Whether They Should ‘Regulate’ Sites Like Zero Hedge

As America continues to drift toward totalitarianism, it is only a matter of time before political speech on the Internet is regulated.  It is already happening in other countries all around the globe, and control freak politicians in the US have begun a renewed push to regulate independent news websites. People are hungry for the truth, and an increasing number of Americans are waking up to the fact that they are not getting the truth from the corporate-controlled media.  But as the alternative media has grown, it was only going to be a matter of time before the establishment started cracking down on it.

Greek Gambit Succeeds As Germany Said To Ease Bailout Terms

With tax receipts tumbling and ELA funding hitting its limit, the Greeks are up against it. On the other side, the Greek strength in the face of EU's demands (and Eurogroup's realization of the uncertainty this could lead to) has apparently led to the start of compromise. As Bloomberg reports,

*GERMAN, GREEK OFFICIALS SIGNAL COMMON GROUND ON AID DEAL
*GERMANY SAID NOT TO INSIST ALL PARTS OF CURRENT BAILOUT STAY, GREECE SAID TO BE OPEN TO SURPLUS, PRIVATIZATION DEBATE

As Merkel noted earlier, "Europe is always about finding a compromise," and it appears they are getting closer  - as long as a 'program' continues. Bundesbank's Weidmann has noted that Grexit would not solve either side's longer-term problems.

The Terms Of The Ukraine Cease-Fire: Presenting "East Ukraine"

The new cease-fire agreement is based largely on the original one that went into effect Sept. 5. It focuses on the withdrawal of heavy artillery systems, which have been prominent throughout the conflict, within 14 days of the cease-fire's implementation. The new cease-fire requires these artillery systems to be withdrawn far beyond their maximum effective ranges, a move that will create a buffer to prevent escalation and heavy artillery fire on the demarcation line.

The Greek Issue Just Got Personal

The usual bag of tricks no longer works. And the subject Varoufakis brings to the table, that the EU and ECB economical policies have been an abject failure is no longer an extreme notion. The contagion from Syriza success can be considerable, and though it pretends otherwise, the EU has no idea what it would mean down the line. Every single option they look at that is NOT Varoufakis surrendering, must scare them out of their socks. Anything they give up will be seen as a sign of weakness, and it will encourage parties for which Syriza ‘carries the torch’, and likely raise their support and votes.

Strong Foreign Demand For 30 Year Bonds Concludes Weekly Treasury Issuance

Hot on the heels of the previously discussed surge in Indirect, aka mostly foreign central bank and other official, demand for 3 and 10 Year Treasurys discussed in the past 2 days, the week's issuance was set to end with today's $13 billion in 30 Years bonds. And, as expected, Indirects could barely contain their excitement, taking down just shy of half, or 49.4%, in line with the recent prints of 48.9% and 49.8% in Janury and December, if a little shy of the record high of 53.2% hit in July, after the auction priced 0.4 bps just wide of the When Issued, at 2.56%, a fraction wider than January's 2.43% even if today's session had seen some aggressive buying into the 1pm hour.

Want To Know Where The Next Bear Market Is? Look Around!

If you want to know where the next bear market is, look around at the people who are enjoying unimaginable wealth. Mr. Market has a habit of correcting things over time. My guess is that you won’t be paid $200K/year to drive trucks in North Dakota for much longer. The best thing about capitalism is that everything is temporary. The last time around, people had the stock, could have sold it, and didn’t. Nothing lasts forever.

US Blinks: Kerry Says Prepared To Roll Back Sanctions On Russia

Did Did The US just blink? Perhaps under pressure from Merkel having enough of Obama's "costs", Secretary of State John Kerry just released the following statement... " the United States is prepared to consider rolling back sanctions on Russia when the Minsk agreements of September 2014, and now this agreement, are fully implemented."

ECB'S Noyer Admits Grexit Would Be "Very Painful", Demands Greece "Negotiate Seriously"

Despite media claims that the German-Greek relationship did not "look tense" at today's EU leaders' meeting; and in spite of the European market's seeming exuberance at no deal but a possible deal but no deal, ECB's Noyer has come out swinging:

*NOYER SAYS GREECE NEEDS TO NEGOTIATE SERIOUSLY, SAYS GREEK EXIT FROM EURO WOULD BE `VERY PAINFUL'

This is odd in that markets have been managed to prove Grexit is 'contained'.. Noyer added that the Emergency lending agreement (ELA) is adapted to the needs of the economy, and ironically explained Greece needed to focus on growth (ironic because Greece is expected to grow notably faster that eurozone this year) and debt reduction won't help.

Dollar & Bond Yields Are Plunging

US equity markets are quietly doing what they do - go up and stay up. But in the biggest markets in the world - US Treasury, Japanese bonds, and foreign exchange - something turmoily is happening. Yields are cratering today.. The USDollar is getting hammered on the back of JPY gapping dramatically stronger and EUR surging.

Audit The Fed - And Shackle It, Too

The monetary politburo has every reason to fear Rand Paul’s demand for a “policy audit” of the Fed. An honest one would show that its so-called “independence” has been monumentally abused in a manner which is deeply threatening to both political democracy and capitalist prosperity. Needless to say, we can’t have that audit soon enough. In short, what the nation really needs is not an “independent” Fed, but one that is shackled to a narrow and market-driven liquidity function. The rest of its current remit is nothing more than the self-serving aggrandizement of the apparatchiks who run it; and who have now managed to turn the nation’s vital money and capital markets into dangerous, unstable casinos, and the nations savers into indentured servants of a bloated and wasteful banking system.

"Do Nothing!"

What's an equity investor to do these days?

Stealth Greek Bank Run Continues: ECB Hikes Emergency Lending To EUR 65 Billion

It would appear the un-sourced rumors of Greek banks having used up their Emergency line of credit with the ECB are true. Following a hastily put together conference calls this morning:

  • *ECB RAISES GREECE ELA ALLOWANCE TO EU65BN: FAZ

Up from the previous EUR59.5 Billion. It appears the stealth bank run in Greece is showing no signs of slowing.