• Steve H. Hanke
    02/11/2016 - 16:08
    The burgeoning literature contains a great deal of hype, which validates the 95% Rule: 95% of what is written about economics and finance is either wrong or irrelevant.

Bank of America

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Here Is The Real Reason Why Authorities Want To Ban High Denomination Bank Notes





Here is the real reason why suddenly high denomination bank notes are the target: it is not because "drug dealers" and tax-evaders use them, but because between banning Europe's €500 bill and the US $100 bill, over half of all physical currency currently in circulation would disappear.

 
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JPM: "Things Have Gotten Out Of Control: People Have More Confidence In Gold Than In Paper Money"





"...gold at $1,200 an ounce, what does that tell you? It tells you that in a flight to quality, in a safe haven, people have more confidence in gold than in bank deposits or paper money. I think things have gotten out of control."

- Bob Michele, Global CIO & Head, Global Fixed Income, Currency & Commodities Group"

 
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"People In The Market For Many, Many Years Have Been Replaced By An Algorithm"





“I don’t think there’s a whole lot from my generation that are still in the industry"..."The business has to be downsized,” said Keith Underwood, a foreign-exchange consultant who ended a 25-year trading career, including at Lloyds Banking Group Plc, in 2014. But it’s not easy “for people who have been in a market for many, many years to see that they’ve been replaced by an algorithm.”

 
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Either Banks Are Cheap... Or The Market's Gonna Crash





Simply put, either large cap Financials are cheap, or the entire U.S. equity market is still overpriced. Their precipitous decline year to date means markets fear they are both the transmission mechanism for a global slowdown/recession to come and a primary victim of that event.

 
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"Few Are Yet Willing To Admit The Harsh Reality..."





A multi-decade Credit Bubble is coming to an end. The past seven years has amounted to an incredible blow-off top and the ongoing worldwide collapse in financial stocks provides powerful support for the bursting global Bubble thesis. Few are yet willing to accept the harsh reality that the world has sunk back into crisis as mal-investment, over-investment and associated wealth destruction remain largely concealed so long as financial asset inflation persists. This is true as well for wealth redistribution. The unfolding adjustment process will deflate asset prices so as to converge more closely with deteriorating underlying economic fundamentals.

 
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2016 EPS Growth Estimates Slashed By 50% Just One Month Into The Year





We open it up to readers to determine in how many weeks will full year 2016 EPS be revised tom 4.3% as of the start of the year, to 2.2% currently, to negative, indicating at least 7 consecutive quarters of declining EPS, something not recorded even during the peak of the financial crisis. Incidentally, an earnings recession is two consecutive negative quarters of EPS: we don't know what the technical term is for seven...

 
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Bank Of America Admits The U.S. May Already Be In A Recession





"The US Treasury curve is still steep by historical standards. Taken at face value, this may suggest recession odds are small. However, we argue this logic is flawed because the curve is structurally steep when the Fed Funds rate is close to zero. When adjusted for the proximity of rates to zero, the curve may already be inverted and therefore may already be priced for a recession./// Implied recession odds are as high as 64% if the adjusted OIS curve is used"

 
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Mass Layoffs To Return With A Vengeance





Remember the mass layoffs of 2008-2009? The US economy shed millions of jobs quickly and relentlessly, as companies died and the rest fought for survival. Then the Fed and the US government flooded the banks and the corporate sector with bailouts and handouts. The nightmare of 2008 soon became a golden era of 'recovery'. Well, 2016 is showing us that that era is over. And as stock prices cease to rise, and in fact fall within many industries, layoffs are beginning to make a return as companies jettison costs in attempt to reduce losses.

 
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Explaining Today's Collapse In US Worker Productivity





Nonfarm Productivity collapsed by 3% QoQ, notably worse than expected as labor costs jump. Economists are gnashing their teeth to explain this "plunging productivity paradox" - we think it is rather simple...

 
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Frontrunning: February 4





  • EU Slashes 2016 Inflation Forecast to 0.5% as Growth Seen Slower (BBG)
  • Bank of England cuts UK growth forecasts (FT)
  • Investors Cast Wary Eye on Fed Rate Increases (WSJ)
  • U.N. halts Syria talks as government closes in on Aleppo (Reuters)
  • Credit Suisse Drops as Investment Bank Slump Deepens Losses (BBG)
  • Six OPEC states ready for emergency meeting with non-OPEC members — Venezuela's minister (TASS)
 
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An Escalator Of Optimism





Beware the "catastrophic gap between optimism and reality."

 
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Here Are The 3 Trades Hedgies Are Using To Bet On A Yuan Devaluation





With an ever-increasing horde of hedge fund "speculators" daring to confront The PBOC, here is how they are placing theirs bets on Yuan devaluation...

 
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How To Beat The Market: One Surprisingly Simple Trade





Today, none other than Bank of America's chief equity quant Savita Subramanian throws in the towel and admits that the best trade over the past several years has been precisely what we suggested several years ago: do the opposite of what the crowd does.

 
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Rally Hobbled As Ugly China Reality Replaces Japan NIRP Euphoria; Oil Rebound Fizzles





It didn't take much to fizzle Friday's Japan NIRP-driven euphoria, when first ugly Chinese manufacturing (and service) PMI data reminded the world just what the bull in the China shop is leading to a 1.8% Shanghai drop on the first day of February. Then it was about oil once more when Goldman itself said not to expect any crude production cuts in the near future. Finally throw in some very cautious words by the sellside what Japan's act of NIRP desperation means, and it becomes clear why stocks on both sides of the pond are down, why crude is not far behind, and why gold continues to rise.

 
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