Australia

"This Is Total Chaos" - Venezuela Shuts Colombia Border To Stop "Mafia" Currency Smuggling

As if things were not already chaotic enough in the socialist utopia of Venezuela, following President Nicolas Maduro's decision to follow Indian PM Modi's playbook and announce that the nation's largest denomination bill (100-Bolivars - worth around 3c) will be pulled from circulation in 72 hours, he has tonight closed the border to Colombia to crackdown on currency smuggling by so-called "mafias".

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The people who are likely to win the next election want to take Italy out of the euro and replace the euro with their own currency, the lira. Unfortunately for the EU, if Greece was a tricky issue to deal with, Italy is — in economic terms — a massive Greece …

Presenting SocGen's "Most Frightening Credit Chart"

"I sometimes feel like ‘The Grim Reaper’, scouring the research savannah in a ghoulish quest to harvest bad news with a forceful sweep of my scythe. Imagine then my perverse delight when our credit team produced what is one of the scariest charts I have seen for a very long time." = Albert Edwards

Global Equity Euphoria Prepares To Meet Mario Draghi

There’s seemingly no stopping the equity side of the “Trumpflation” trade in what may be developing into an epic year end blow-off top. The euphoria which took the S&P 500, Russell 2000 and the Transports to all-time highs yesterday, and the Dow to less than 500 points away from 20,000 carried over into Asian stocks (+0.8%) as they followed bullish trend, while European stocks rose for a fourth day.

Yuan Strengthens After Rebound In China Exports, Trade Balance Disappoints

It appears that devaluing your currency against by over 10% in a year against your major trading partners does have some affect (albeit delayed). China Exports (in Yuan terms) grew at 5.9% in November (the fastest growth since March) (well ahead of the expected 1% decline). Imports, however, also soared (by 13%) in Yuan terms. However, in USD terms, Imports rose by the most since Sept 2014 (and exports managed a small rise) as China's trade surplus slipped and missed expectations. Offshore Yuan is strengthening modestly on the print.