Bond

Bank Of America: "It's Getting Frothy, Man"

When even Bank of America has a note titled "It's getting frothy, man", and joins such other bubble-warners as JPM, Bill Gross, Larry Fink, and David Einhorn, one can be absolutely positive that the Fed will do... absolutely nothing.

Hungover Markets Enter November With Quiet Overnight Session

After a blistering October for stocks, drunk on yet another month of record liquidity by the cental planners, November's first overnight trading session has been quiet so far, with the highlight being the release of both official and HSBC China PMI data. The official manufacturing PMI rose to 51.4 in October from 51.1 in September. It managed to beat expectations of 51.2 and was also the highest reading in 18 months - since April 2012. October’s PMIs are historically lower than those for September, so the MoM uptick is considered a bit more impressive. The uptrend in October was also confirmed by the final HSBC manufacturing PMI which printed at 50.9 which is higher than the preliminary reading of 50.7 and September’s reading of 50.9. The Chinese data has helped put a floor on Asian equities overnight and S&P 500 futures are nudging higher (+0.15%). The key laggard are Japanese equities where the TOPIX (-1.1%) is weaker pressured by a number of industrials, ahead of a three day weekend. Electronics-maker Sony is down 12% after surprising the market with a profit downgrade with this impacting sentiment in Japanese equities.

BNP Warns "You Can Never Leave" From The Fed's "Hotel California"

In the 1977 Eagles song, Hotel California, a luxury hotel appears inviting and offers a tired traveller comforting relief from his journey. It turns out to be something of a nightmare, however, and he finds that "you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave". BNP's Paul Mortimer-Lee asks "does that sound a little bit like QE and the Fed?" The FOMC signalled its intention to check out of QE at its June meeting, but by September, it found it could not leave. Is that not just like QE1 and QE2, the scheduled ends of which had to be reversed within relatively short periods? The question now is whether or not we should expect repeated market obstacles to a QE3 exit. Why? Because, as we have noted numerous times, flows matter.

Europe's Scariest Chart Goes From Bad To Worst On Record

The "wedge" between 'market-perception' and economic reality, that we discussed in detail last night, driven by Merkel's enabling of Draghi's excess, has never been more extreme. As Elliott's Paul Singer noted, things are indeed "wrong and dangerous" when politicians are proclaiming victories, stocks are at record highs, bonds risk is at multi-year lows and yet unemployment rates (most specifically among the under-25 youth of the region) soars back to record highs. A stunning 24.1% of young people across the entire euro-zone is unemployed; Spain (having 'exited' its nominal recession) stands at a record 56.5% youth unemployment, topped only by Greece's mind-numbing 57.3% youth unemployment record (as Greek bond yields hit 3 year lows). France and Italy also hit record highs and Cyprus' broad unemployment level has exploded from 28% a year ago to 43% now. Amid all of this, Germany's youth unemployment continues to improve to a 20 year low. Recipe for disaster?

Futures Unable To Ramp Higher Despite Cornucopia Of Disappointing Macro News

In addition to the bevy of ugly European unemployment and inflation news just reported, the overnight session had a dollop of more ugly macro data for the algos to kneejerkingly react to and ramp stocks to fresh time highs on. First it was China, where the PBOC did another reverse repo, however this time at a fixed 4.3% rate, 0.2% higher than the Monday iteration and well above the 3%-handle from early October, indicating that China is truly intent on tightening its monetary conditions. Then Japan confirmed that despite the soaring imported food and energy inflation, wages just refuse to rise, and have declined now for nearly 1.5 years. Then, adding core insult to peripheral injury, Germany reported retail sales that missed expectations of a +0.4% print wildly, declining -0.4% from a prior downward revised 0.5% to -0.2%. And so on: more below. However, as usual what does matter is how the market digests the FOMC news, and for now the sense is that the risk of a December taper has risen based on the FOMC statement language, whether warranted or not, which as a result is pushing futures modestly lower following an epic move higher in the month of October on nothing but pure balance sheet and multiple expansion.  The big data week in the US rolls on with the highlights being the Chicago PMI and initial jobless claims, which are expected to print their first accurate, non-impaired reading since August.

Where Is The US Labor Market Heading?

When will the U.S. labor market start to accelerate?  That is the single most critical question for global capital markets, for it speaks directly to both economic growth and Federal Reserve monetary policy.  But, as ConvergEx's Nick Colas notes, just as important, however, is the question "Where do people actually want to work?" Nick's key conclusions: there is no evidence of any faster pace of hiring, and the trend of hiring part time labor over full time is both strong (a 3:1 ratio) and accelerating.

Meanwhile In Japan... "The BoJ Is Swallowing Everything"

The Bank of Japan's governor Kuroda proudly told the world "long-term yields are bound to rise at some point, but we can curb it when it happens," and on a grand scale - that is what they have done (for now). But market participants are growing increasingly concerned. As we have warned numerous times, the suppression of 'normal' volatility in teh short-term can only lead to larger uncontrollable moves in the future. As The FT reports, some worry, too, that the BoJ has pushed up JGB prices to the point where interest rates no longer bear any relation to the government’s creditworthiness - "effectively we have removed the light from the lighthouse." Some say the transition has been unsettling as many analysts talk more openly of the risks inherent in what the BoJ is trying to pull off. For one thing, liquidity has evaporated... "volatility looks low now, but if some investors start selling, the impact on the market could be much bigger than expected. That is a big risk."

Post-FOMC Update: Stocks, Bonds, Bullion Tumble; USD Soars, & NASDAQ Breaks

The USD surged and Treasury bond prices and precious metals tumbled instantly on the FOMC's statement but stocks decide it was time to ramp to VWAP (and VIX was hammered lower). After the initial knee-jerk, stocks caught back down to the reality of the other markets as it appears the investing public chooses to "sell the news" on the basis that the Fed removed the 'tightening conditions' language. The only question now is just how much of November, December, and January's seasonal hope has been pulled forward into the last few days.

It's Official: The US Is The 'Dirtiest' Dirty Shirt In Global Macro

Despite what the talking heads continue to spew to justify all-time high stock market valuations, the 'fact' is that year-to-date, US Macro data has now performed the worst of all global macro indices. Furthermore, the pace of collapse in the last 4-weeks is the fastest in 8 months. What is perhaps most ironic is that US Macro peaked at the last FOMC meeting (when the Fed decided that data was not supportive enough to Taper) so any surprise today simply supports the fact that the Fed's decision is anything but fundamentally driven (and instead perhaps driven by the four 'bad' reasons for a tapering.)

Pulling The Plug On QE – Will The Fed Ever Taper?

Saxo Capital Markets’ latest infographic explores the long-term value of quantitative easing (QE) and, surveying the effect on the US economy, asks whether the US Federal Reserve will ever taper QE.

BNP: "The Bigger The Rally, The Worse The Sell-Off Will Be" And "When The Fed Tightens, Bad Stuff Happens"

  • History tells us that when the Fed tightens, bad stuff happens. The bond sell-off this summer on the mere announcement of QE ‘tapering’ is a case in point.
  • Bonds will suffer when actual ‘tapering’ is announced. When it starts, we are likely to trade through the previous high for yields.
  • Equities may look fairly immune at first, but as QE buying fades and eventually stops, take care. Any equity sell-off will have a knock-on effect on bonds and the economy.
  • How large the effect on the markets will be will depend on how much the markets rally while QE is ‘on’. The bigger the rally, the worse the sell-off will be.

European Stocks Slump On German Double-Whammy ; US Markets "Crossed"

US and European stock markets (and European sovereign bond markets) have been sliding since early in the European morning overnight. The blame for the weakness appears to be coming from a double-whammy in Germany. First the German government resolved to push for the financial transaction tax (despite banks rejection of the proposal - well they would wouldn't they) and then later in the day when Germany's emerging coalition rejected the last-best-hope for shared sacrifice (or using more of Germany's balance sheet) - The Debt-Redemption Fund - leaving more pressure back on Draghi to save the day. Anxiety in the US is clear with VIX (and credit spreads) rising as hedgers are active - and of course, markets are broken with NASDAQ options prices 'crossed' acording to some sources.