Microsoft Fires 7,800: Second Biggest Mass Layoff In Its History

It has been almost exactly one year since Micorsoft announced it would fire a record 18,000 people (surpassing the previous all time high layoff round of 5,800 in 2009) form a company that one upon a time seen as infallible as AAPL. So perhaps in order to release more funds with which to buy back its struggling stock, moments ago Microsoft did what it had to do to make corporate executives richer, and reported it would lay off another 7,700 workers.

While We Were Offline - The Market Broke, Was Fixed (Stocks Slumped), & Broke Again

This morning we experienced an unprecedented surge in traffic which brought our servers to a grinding halt. We are happy to announce that we are now back up. In the meantime... a pre-emptive attempt at plunge protection (by breaking NYSE just like on Monday) failed as NYSE re-opens and stocks slumped. Seeing this, the NYSE decided to break again and stocks ripped...

Germany Crushes All Hope Of Greece Getting Debt Relief

"At the moment and in principle we see, as the chancellor said expressly in her press conference in Brussels, no occasion at all to discuss this issue - there is no leverage or basis for that," Martin Jaeger said at a news conference. "That refers to a haircut in the classic sense but I explicitly add we also take that to mean measures that aim to bring about a reduction in the cash value of debt - those are things that you hear in discussions under profiling, restructuring and similar things."

European Stocks, Bonds Surge On Blatant SNB Intervention

At around 645ET, EURCHF suddenly took off out of nowhere. This instantly lifted European stocks off new post-Greferendum lows, slammeds EU credit risk lower, lifted US equity markets, and drove Treasury yields higher. The SNB has declined to comment on whether it intervenened but we ask in all frankness, have we become so divorced from 'free markets' that China can blatantly enter markets to save them (and fail) and European markets can mysteriously go bid and no one bats an eyelid that this is all rigged.

Frontrunning: July 8

  • Greece and China expose limits of 'whatever it takes' (Reuters)
  • China no longer has a market: China Stock Sellers Frozen Out of 71% of Market (BBG)
  • China’s Market Rescue Makes Matters Worse as Prices Lose Meaning (BBG)
  • China Stocks Plunge as State Support Fails to Revive Confidence (BBG)
  • China Market Rout Spreads From Stocks to Price of Pig Food (BBG)
  • China’s State-Owned Firms Ordered Not to Cut Share Holdings (BBG)
  • Greece Requests Three-Year Bailout in First Step Toward Meeting Creditors’ Demand (WSJ)
  • Greece Faces Euro Exit Unless Demands Accepted by Sunday (BBG)

Greece Caves, Formally Requests ESM Bailout: Full Headline And Next Steps Summary

Greece formally requested a three-year bailout from the eurozone’s rescue fund Wednesday and pledged to start implementing some of the overhauls demanded by creditors by early next week. Crucially for Greece’s creditors, the letter says the government would start implementing some measures, including on taxation and pensions, by the beginning of next week, though it doesn’t go into details. The letter is a first step toward fulfilling a demand by international creditors, who have given Athens until Sunday to come up with tougher measures they would impose in return for desperately needed financing that could keep the country from bankruptcy and even worse economic turmoil. 

Will Greek "Hope" Offset "Limit Down" Contagion From The "Frozen" China Crash

Today's market battle will be between those (central banks) "hoping" that a Greek deal over the weekend is finally imminent (which on one hand looks possible after a major backpeddling by Tsipras - who may never have wanted to win the Greferendum in the first place - yesterday in Brussels and today during his speech in the Euro Parliament, but on the other will be a nearly impossible sell to Greece as any deal terms will be far harsher than the deal offered by the Troika 2 weeks ago and will have no debt reduction), and those who finally noticed that the Chinese central planners have effectively lost control.

Barclays Fires CEO In Latest Rate-Rigging Euro Bank Shakeup

It's shaping up to be a rough year for CEOs at Europe's most notorious rate rigging, scandal laden investment banks. Just three months after Brady Dougan left Credit Suisse and barely 30 days since Anshu Jain and Jürgen Fitschen tendered their resignations at Deutsche Bank, Barclays has shown CEO Antony Jenkins the door.

The Greferendum Shocker: Tsipras "Intended To Lose" And Is Now "Trapped By His Success"

Call it "game theory" gone horribly "chaos theory."

The Greek prime minister who decisively and unexpectedly pushed for a referendum on the last weekend of June, "never expected to win Sunday's referendum on EMU bail-out terms, let alone to preside over a blazing national revolt against foreign control." He got just that, and in a landslide vote at that even though "he called the snap vote with the expectation - and intention - of losing it."

Moron Madness

There is much to enjoy and savor, but it is overwhelmed by moron madness. We’ve come to believe that Aldous Huxley’s fears have been manifested on the boardwalk of Wildwood and across our entire nation. The masses don’t read books. We are inundated with so much useless information, we have been reduced to passivity and egotism. The truth is buried in a sea of irrelevance and our culture is based upon triviality. Our almost infinite desire for distractions and pleasure have produced a profoundly abnormal society. The ignorant masses are acting normally only in the context of living in a sick, demented, abnormal society.

China Now Risks "Financial Crisis"; Loses Could Be "In The Trillions" BofA Says

The impact of a full-blown financial crisis in China, if it materializes, on the economy would likely be severe. On corporate earnings, other than the drag from slower growth, many companies may have to book stock-market related losses over the next few quarters by our assessment. Stock lending related losses could run into Rmb trillions.

Cronyism Pays: Eric Holder Triumphantly Returns To Law Firm That Lobbies For Banks

After failing to criminally prosecute any of the financial firms responsible for the market collapse in 2008, former Attorney General Eric Holder is returning to Covington & Burling, a corporate law firm known for serving Wall Street clients. The move completes one of the more troubling trips through the revolving door for a cabinet secretary. Holder worked at Covington from 2001 right up to being sworn in as attorney general in Feburary 2009. And Covington literally kept an office empty for him, awaiting his return. When the firm moved to a new building last year, it kept an 11th-story corner office reserved for Holder.

Presenting China's Plunge Protection Playbook

Over the past two weeks, China has resorted to an eye-watering array of policy maneuvers and pronouncements in a desperate attempt to resurrect the country's margin-fueled equity bubble. Amid the chaos, Morgan Stanley — whose "don't buy this dip" call might well have been the straw that broke the dragon's back, so to speak — is out with a detailed history of Beijing's plunge protection playbook.