Capital Markets

"If It Looks Like A Duck" - The Man In The Moon: Part 2

During “normal times” – an economic growth phase accompanied or generated by rising systemic leverage – central banks have incentive to promote nominal growth and inflation, which make banking systems profitable and their free-spending political overseers happy. In such times, commercial banks have fiduciary responsibilities to shareholders to constantly increase their market values, which they do by expanding their balance sheets.  Now that economies are highly leveraged, extinguishing debt would require banks to reduce the sizes of their loan books, which would shrink their market values. Thus, it seems economic policy makers never have incentive to promote debt extinguishment in the banking system, regardless of economic conditions or prospects.

The Future Of India's Monetary Policy Is Now "Monsoon Dependent"

As it turns out it is not just a US "thing" to blame the weather. Enter the Bank of India, which overnight cut its benchmark rate from 7.5% to 7.25%, as had been largely expected, taking India's interest rate to the lowest since September 2013. The punchline, however, was when RBI's governor Raghuram Rajan gave his outlook for the possibility of future rate cuts, saying he would have to wait to assess monsoon rains before acting again

A 10% Correction Now Or A 20% (Or More) Bear Market Later On

If U.S. equities feel brittle, they should. Yes, central bank liquidity from Japan and Europe may well push global equity markets higher.  But what we really need is a pullback – that classic 10% correction that flushes out weak hands, reestablishes the discipline of “Risk” in the “Risk-Return” equation, and shows capital markets how to do more than just follow central bank liquidity.  So watch June’s price action in U.S. stocks very carefully, because this process needs to start now.  The bull market that began in March 2009 is now an ancient bovine indeed.  After all, better 10% now than 20% or more later in the year.  The first is inconvenient.  The second is unwelcomed.

It's Official: The "Helicopter Money" Calls Have Begun

In April we said that "sooner or later, in order to avoid liquidation and stave off severe disinflationary pressures, someone will have to call in "Helicopter Janet" and once the cash paradropping begins well, we'll see you in the Weimar Republic." Sure enough, the semi-official calls for helicopter drone cash drops have arrived.

Hysterical (Or Historical) Blindness

When money and investing is no longer rewarded by business acumen and prowess - rather it’s “Here’s a boatload of cheap money. Throw as much as you can, as fast as you can, at as many as you can, and see what, if any sticks” - that is when you should be looking for where the lifeboats are hanging. Rather, than hanging around on the poop-deck waiting to see if it’s all about to hit a fan. We guess we’re just back to the old turn a blind eye to anything historical. Remember “It’s different this time.” Nothing to see here, move along, don’t fret, no need for concern. Just remember and repeat three times every time there’s reason for concern when the market drops 200 or 300 points out of the blue only to recover all if not more the next day... “The Fed’s got your back, the Fed’s got your back, The……”

A Generation Of Rate-Hike Rookies Makes Jeff Gundlach Nervous

Rates have been so low for so long, that many of the traders who will be on the front lines if and when the Fed ever does decide to start down the long path to normalizing policy have never, in their professional careers, seen a rate hike. “The experience that many investment operations have with rising rates for most of us is very low for some it’s nonexistent," Jeff Gundlach warns.

Putin Slams US Over FIFA Arrests: "Another Blatant Attempt By The US To Meddle Outside Its Jurisdiction"

Following yesterday's surprise DOJ indictment in which 14 FIFA affiliates were perp-walked out of Zurich's swankiest hotel just days ahead of Sepp Blatter's re-election, one person was quite displeased with this latest US intervention on the international arena: Russian president Vladimir Putin who accused the United States of meddling outside its jurisdiction by arresting officials from FIFA, further hinting that it was part of an attempt to take the 2018 World Cup away from his country.

The Global Economy As Seen From "The Man In The Moon"

The Man in the Moon studies the pathology of Earth’s global economy and markets from a distance where there’s no gravitational pull towards empiricism or consensus. His findings: 1) the global economy is over-leveraged, fragile, stagnating, and increasingly centrally managed; 2) capital markets and asset performance have been captured by the perception of the ongoing value of money, and so; 3) unconventional investment analysis is prudent.

Bill Gross: "My 'Short Of A Lifetime' Bund Trade Was Well Timed But Not Necessarily Well Executed"

Bill Gross just revealed another aspect of trading in the new (or any) normal: one may get the direction and the timing with laser-like precision (as Gross did on his Bund trade), but if said trade is excecuted in a way where the inherent "coiled spring" volatility of the Gross-defined "new normal" blows up the trade structure, the losses will make one wish never to have had the correct idea in the first place.

Asia Scholar Lays Out "Three Ways China And The US Could Go To War"

"Beijing has not yet declared a formal air defense identification zone (ADIZ) over the South China Sea, unlike the one it established over part of the East China Sea in 2013, nor could it today enforce such a zone effectively with its current fighters. However, with its reclamation activities continuing, and the Obama Administration apparently having decided to challenge China’s claims, the US and China are now potentially closer to an armed encounter than at any time in the past 20 years. Here are three ways the US and China could go to war..."

Why China Is So Desperate To Blow The Most Epic Stock Bubble

The Shanghai Composite is on the verge of 5,000 and has more than doubled in the past year but this may just be the beginning. The reason: if the Chinese stock bubble bursts, that will be the beginning of the end of the greatest con game in history.