Bank of America

Bank Of America's Latest Credit Trade Reco: "We Got Crushed"

It is one thing for Bank of America's chief credit strategist Hans Mikkelsen to be wrong on his long-term strategic call about a "Great Rotation" out of bonds and into stocks year... after year... after year (somewhat ironic that the credit guy gets the equity call right, and is dead wrong on the credit side). After all, it has gotten to the point where the buyside bets how long it takes until the latest vintage of said "great" call blows up in his face. These are, after all, "strategic" call, and as everyone knows, when the sellside says one thing strategically, it is time to do the other. However, not even the most jaded and cynical of market observers had any clue just how spectacular Mikkelsen's "tactical" call implosion would be.  Apparently, neither did he. And judging by his language, his clients - if there are any left of course - most certainly did not either.  "We wrote last Friday that this week would be crunch time for our challenged tactical (short term) short stance on the market, expressed by buying protection on the CDX.IG. We got crushed. Thus we remove our tactical view and cover the short."

This Is Why The $1.6 Billion MBIA Settlement Will Have Zero Impact On Bank Of America's Q2 Earnings

Moments ago, Bank of America and MBIA both formally announced the earlier leaked settlement that sees the bank pay the monoline a long-overdue $1.6 billion in cash plus the issuance of MBIA warrants to buy 9.94 million shares, or 4.9%, of MBI stock at an exercise prices of $9.59/share, which may be exercised at any time prior to May 2018. It is perhaps worth point out that the settlement took place with nearly half of the second quarter already in the books. In addition, BAC will also provide a $500MM credit facility to MBIA. End result: a $1.6 billion pretax charge for Bank of America. And yet, none of this settlement will impact any Bank of America Q2 numbers. Why? The press release explains.

MBI Saga Over: Bank Of America To Settle Long-Running Litigation, Take 5% Stake; MBIA Stock Soars 50%

The seemingly endless MBIA saga, in which the mortgage insurer sued Bank of America and where a settlement has been overdue for some two years (see here), is finally coming to an end. Moments ago Dow Jones reported what the final settlement may look like: $1.6 billion in cash as well as a $500 million line of credit. Just as notable, BAC will buy a 5% equity stake in the name. MBIA was briefly halted as a circuit breaker was triggered, and has continued to surge following the unhalt. As a reminder, a settlement in this case may push the company into the $20 handle realm. Finally, our report from September 2011 on MBIA's potential to be the next Volkswagen courtesy of its massive short interest as a percent of float can be found here.

Full NFP Preview

  • Bank of America 125K
  • UBS 130K
  • Deutsche Bank 140K
  • Citigroup 140K
  • JP Morgan 145K
  • Goldman Sachs 150K
  • Barclays 150K
  • HSBC 170K

Frontrunning: May 1

  • Physical demand up: U.S. Mint Sales of Gold Coins Jump to Highest in Three Years (BBG)
  • Paper demand down: Gold ETP Holdings Cap Record Drop as $17.9 Billion Wiped Out (BBG)
  • It's May 1 not April 1: Fed Seen Slowing Stimulus With QE Cut by End of This Year (BBG)
  • Another great step for Abenomics: Sony leadership to forgo bonuses after broken promise on profits (FT)
  • High-Speed Traders Exploit Loophole (WSJ)
  • It's peanut Breaburn jelly time: How Google UK clouds its tax liabilities (Reuters)
  • Frowny face day at the Mark Zandi household: Obama Said to Choose Watt to Lead Fannie Mae Regulator (BBG)
  • Russia’s 20 Biggest Billionaires Keep Riches From Putin (BBG)
  • China Affair With Cheap Diamonds Heats Mass Market (BBG)
  • China's emotional ties to North Korea run deep in border city (Reuters)
  • US companies must use cash piles for capex (FT) ... and yet they aren't. Tax anyone who doesn't spend for CapEx!
  • Chinese Way of Doing Business: In Cash We Trust (NYT)

Student Loan Bubble Cracks With Pulled Sallie Mae Bond Deal

In 2007 a small number of French hedge funds imploded over sudden losses stemming from highly leveraged bets made on the unstoppable subprime mortgage market. At the time, a few saw the writing on the wall; but many simply wrote it off as just another over-levered hedge fund and the subprime mortgage market was 'fine'. Fast forward six years and as we have discussed numerous times (most recently here and here) there is a bubble, potentially far bigger than subprime, in student loan debt. As one of the last remaining outlets for state-sanction credit creation, this is a big deal; but, of course, the popping of the bubble (or even a slight leak) is eschewed since there is so much 'reach for yield' and the Fed's got your back. That is until this week. As WSJ reports, Sallie Mae (SLM), the nation's largest non-government student lender just cancelled a $225 million debt offering as investors  decided they simply were not getting paid enough for risk - amid rising student loan defaults. Simply put, there's a limit to what investors will tolerate.

Chief Advisor To US Treasury Becomes JPMorgan's Second Most Important Man

The man who is the chief advisor to the US Treasury on its debt funding and issuance strategy was just promoted to the rank of second most important person at the biggest commercial bank in the US by assets (of which it was $2.5 trillion), and second biggest commercial bank in the world. And soon, Jamie willing, Matt is set for his final promotion, whereby he will run two very different enterprises: JPMorgan Chase and, by indirect implication, United States, Inc.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you take over the world.

"The Illuminati Were Amateurs" - Matt Taibbi Explains How "Everything Is Rigged"

The Illuminati were amateurs. The second huge financial scandal of the year reveals the real international conspiracy: There's no price the big banks can't fix. Conspiracy theorists of the world, believers in the hidden hands of the Rothschilds and the Masons and the Illuminati, we skeptics owe you an apology. You were right. The players may be a little different, but your basic premise is correct: The world is a rigged game. We found this out in recent months, when a series of related corruption stories spilled out of the financial sector, suggesting the world's largest banks may be fixing the prices of, well, just about everything.

"Panic" For Physical Gold Spreads To UK Where Royal Mint Sales Of Gold Coins Triple

Things in the US have gotten so bad, not only are most online dealers backlogged weeks and months in advance for most PMs (as the CEO of Texas Precious Metals explained in detail), but respected bullion vaults are also now on the verge of running out of inventory. As Reuters described, "Michael Kramer, president of Manfra, Tordella & Brookes (MTB), a major U.S. coin dealer in New York, has been inundated by orders from existing and new wholesale and retail customers. "It's panic. This is one of the busiest times in quite a while. People think gold's at the lows and they want to take advantage." It was only a matter of time before the last bastion of paper money, London, also succumbed to the soaring demand for physical, and sure enough moments ago Bloomberg reported that the "Britain’s Royal Mint, established in the 13th century, sold more than three times more gold coins this month than a year earlier as prices declined." Sales are more than 150 percent higher than last month, according to Shane Bissett, director of bullion and commemorative coin at the Royal Mint.

Frontrunning: April 23

  • China’s Recovery Falters as Manufacturing Growth Cools (BBG)
  • Gloomy eurozone output points to rate cut (FT)
  • Limit Austerity, EU appartchik Barroso Says (WSJ)
  • Regulators Get Banks to Rein In Bonus Pay (WSJ)
  • SEC looks to ease rules for launching ETFs (Reuters)
  • Easy come, easy go: U.S. Seizes $21 Million From Electric Car Maker Fisker (WSJ)
  • Japan nationalists near disputed isles (Reuters)
  • OECD in fresh warning on Japan debt (FT)
  • S&P says more than one-third chance of Japan downgrade, cites risks to Abenomics (Reuters)
smartknowledgeu's picture

Let's get down to the facts of the recent banker gold & silver paper price smash and the lies about the banker gold & silver paper price smash being propagated by the mass media and banking shills like Paul Krugman so everyone can understand why this smash will blow up in the face of the very bankers that executed it at some point down the road. Retail individuals AND global institutions all around the world are finally beginning to understand that physical ownership of gold and silver is how to counter banker fraud & intervention into the gold and silver markets and this realization is going to produce massive blowback.

Guest Post: From Shirakawa To Kuroda: The Regime Change Explained

The main take away from events in Japan is that the BOJ shifted from a tactic of interventions (under former Governor Masaaki Shirakawa) to one of monetary policy (under current Governor Haruhiko Kuroda) . What strikes us is that the monetary policy is precisely to... well, destroy their money and in the process any chance of having a monetary policy. In our view, it was exactly because the Fed’s (undisclosed) intention was to engage in never ending Quantitative Easing, that Japan was forced to implement the policy undertaken by Kuroda. Coordination with the Fed was impossible. With Mr. Kuroda’s policy, we now have the BOJ with a balance sheet objective, the Fed with a labour market objective (or so they want us to believe), the European Central Bank with a financial system stability objective (or a Target 2 balance objective) and the People’s Bank of China (and the Bank of Canada) with soft-landing objective. It is clear that any global coordination in monetary policy is completely unfeasible. The only thing central banks are left to coordinate is the suppression of gold.

Frontrunning: April 18

  • Apple reportedly stops placing Mac component orders (DigiTimes)
  • Apple Ordered to Remove Obscene Content From China Store (BBG)
  • Texas Ammonia-Plant Blast Kills as Many as 15 People (Reuters)
  • Boston Probe Said Focused on Person Dropping Bag at Site (BBG)
  • The Chinese cold trade war comes come to roost: US becomes Japan’s top export market (FT)
  • Berlusconi, Bersani back Marini in presidential vote (Ansa)
  • German parliament backs Cyprus bailout (Reuters)
  • China Vows Wider Yuan Movement (WSJ)
  • Morgan Stanley Sees Core Earnings Weaken (WSJ)
  • Gold Miners Lose $169 Billion as Price Slump Adds ETF Pain (BBG)
  • G-20 Draft Affirms Pledge to Avoid Competitive Devaluations (BBG)
  • IMF warns on risks of excessive easing (FT)
  • The battle for the Swiss soul (Reuters)

Overnight Sentiment: Attempting A Rebound

Following yesterday's most recent Europe-led rout, the market is attempting a modest rebound, driven by the usual carry funding currency pair (EURUSD and USDJPY) levitation, although so far succeeding only modestly with not nearly enough overnight ramp to offset the bulk of yesterday's losses. In a centrally-planned, currency war-waging world, it is sad that only two key FX pairs matter in setting risk levels. But it is beyond hypocritical and highly ironic that according to a draft, the G-20 will affirm a commitment to "avoid weakening their currencies to gain an advantage for their exports." So the G-20 issues a statement saying nobody is doing it, when everyone is, thus making it ok to cheapen your exports into "competitiveness"? In other words, if everyone lies, nobody lies. Of course, also when everyone eases, nobody eases, and the world is back to square one. But that will only become clear eventually.