Consumer Credit

Is A New Banking Crisis Imminent? Recent Rise In Delinquency Rates Is Shocking

In 2006 it was exactly twelve months after delinquency rates bottomed that the recession began. If the same period applies, we are due for a recession. In the first quarter of the Great Recession in 2008, delinquency rates were only 1.45%. We are already above that level. The fact that increasing loan delinquency coincides with mountains of debt maturing in 2016 and 2017 is a topic for next time.

This Is What The Coming "Bond Shock" Will Look Like

The only thing that can halt the tsunami of bond buying, would be a Bond Shock, an event that is certain to take place, the only question is when. As BofA points out, the relentless chasing after government paper will change "if Quantitative Failure spreads from Europe & Japan to the US."  Here's how to time it and what it would look like.

"The Fed Has Failed" - A Disturbing New Warning From Bank Of America

"Central banks have lost the “War against Deflation”. They have failed to stimulate animal spirits depressed by the 4D’s of excess Debt, financial Deleveraging, aging Demographics and technological Disruption. This changes if Quantitative Failure spreads from Europe & Japan to the US. A rise in US bank CDS and/or a dive in assets related to consumer & housing credit would be very negative for global asset prices in our view. Note the new whispers of a peak in the US consumer credit cycle which, if true, at a time of zero rates in an $18 trillion, consumer-led economy would be concerning."

"Loan Stacking" - The Blind Spot That Could Blow Up The P2P Model

Back in February we noted that there were cracks starting to show in the world of P2P lending, and more specifically, with LendingClub's inability to assess credit risk of its borrowers that were causing the company to experience higher write-off rates than forecast. And now courtesy of Reuters, we learn of a critical blind spot in the world of online lending.

FedSpeak - Lost In Translation

Federal Reserve speakers appear to be suffering from an inability to contain themselves to the detriment of their audiences. So damaging is FedSpeak, so to speak, that it’s become the Fed’s greatest liability, chipping away at what little credibility monetary policymakers have left in reserve. Perhaps what is most disturbing about today’s stretch of FedSpeak is how it parallels with the months preceding the Great Recession.

Consumer Credit Growth Slows Sharply In April

There was much excitement last month when the Fed reported that in March consumer credit soared by the highest in years, rising by $28 billion, and smashing expectations, on the back of a near record $10.4 billion surge in revolving, aka credit card, credit. It appears that this may have been a "one-time" event, because according to the latest report, in April, consumer credit rose by less than half of its March total notional, increasing by only $13.4 billion, well below the $18 billion expected.

S&P Nears All Time High, Global Stocks Rally As Dovish Yellen Unleashes Animal Spirits

Stock whisperer Yellen said all the right things yesterday, when she sounded more optimistic than pessimistic on the economy but while the economy is "strong" it is most likely not strong enough to weather a rate hike in the immediate future. As a result, the S&P 500 climbed toward a record on Monday (and continued rising overnight) after Yellen said she expects to raise interest rates only gradually and held off from specifying any timeframe, a shift from her May 27 stance that a move was probable “in the coming months.” This was interpreted that both a June and July rate hike are now off the table, with September odds rising modestly.

Key Events In The Coming Week

After last week's global data deluge which culminated with the worst US jobs reported in 6 years, looking at this week’s calendar we get the usual post-payrolls data lull, punctuated by Yellen's speech today which will be the last scheduled Fed statement before the June FOMC.

Futures Flat Following Friday's Jobs Fiasco: All Eyes On Yellen Again

Every ugly jobs report has a silver lining, and sure enough following Friday's disastrous jobs report, global mining and energy companies rallied alongside commodities after the jobs data crushed speculation the Fed would raise interest rates this month.  “The disappointing U.S. jobs report on Friday means that a summer Fed rate hike is off the table,” said Jens Pedersen, a commodities analyst at Danske Bank. “That has reversed the upwards trend in the dollar, supporting commodities on a broader basis. The market will look for confirmation in Yellen’s speech later today.”

Myopic Markets & The Looming Mall REITs Massacre

While markets are myopically co-moving to the siren songs of Fed hawks and doves, deteriorating fundamentals are becoming harder to ignore. Like wildfires, it’s hard to predict how quickly and where market panic will spread to next. However, the chain-reaction of peak consumer credit growth, softening retail sales, and tightening credit conditions does not bode well for REITs going forward.

Everything Changed In 1980 - Why The Fed Is Wrong

Unfortunately, for Mr. Rosengren, since the average American was never allowed to actually deleverage following the financial crisis, and still living well beyond their means, economic growth will remain mired at lower levels as savings continue to be diverted from productive investment into debt service.  The issue, of course, is not just a central theme to the U.S. but to the global economy as well.  After seven years of excessive monetary interventions, global debt levels have yet to be resolved. If the Fed does proceed in hiking rates in the current environment, it will likely be a “policy error” which will be regretted in the not too distant future as debt service costs rise thereby further reducing consumers ability to “consume.”

Even Bill Gross Misunderstands "Free-Market Capitalism"

We have deviated so far from free markets at this point that even the top financial minds no longer have any understanding of what is meant by capitalism. It must be true, for anyone who understands capitalism could never have published such a letter. The logic in Mr. Gross’s argument is beyond invalid, in fact, it is so ludicrous it borders on insane. We mean this quite literally...