Crude

Who Makes What?

From Bahamian crawfish to Mexican shoes, and from Argentine soybeans to Ethiopian coffee, the world makes (and trades) in far more than just crude oil and petroleum products. However, given the current deflationary world, it is very notable how many countries in the world are dependent on commodities as the primary source of foreign income.

Crude Chaos As Cushing Inventories Rise For 6th Straight Week

Following Genscape's projection that Cushing inventories rose less than expected, various sources on Twitter report that API sees a 4.4mm build (in line with expectations of a 3.9mm build) after EIA's massive build of over 10.3mm barrels last week. Cushing saw a 692k build - the 6th week in a row but gasoline and distillates saw a draw. Crude sold off all day as the short-covering squeeze ended but as the data hit, WTI dipped, ripped, and dipped again... only to rally once more...

Trumpomania & Trumpopanic

The country’s social mood is apparently ripe and it finally seems actually possible for a perceived outsider to win by challenging the established order. Our main regret is that it wasn’t yet ripe at the time Ron Paul tried his hand at winning the nomination. Everything Trump is saying and doing should probably be seen in the context of his strategy. It’s quite Machiavellian actually. The alleged lack of discernible policy stances, the occasional contradictions and often hair-raising statements are all in pursuit of the same goal: to win the nomination. Other than that, we mainly enjoy the growing discomfort of assorted cronies and professional politicians.

"I'll Go Full Power If There's No Agreement" - Kuwait Breaks OPEC Production Freeze

Kuwait's oil minister said on Tuesday that his country's participation in an output freeze would require all major oil producers, including Iran, to be on board. "I'll go full power if there's no agreement. Every barrel I produce I'll sell," Anas al-Saleh told reporters in Kuwait City. And since Iran has made it very, very clear it will not join the production freeze at its current mothballed output, and will need at least 9-12 months before it regains its pre-embargo capacity levels, one can forget about a production freeze well into 2017 if not for ever since by then at least one if not more OPEC members will be bankrupt.

Frontrunning: March 8

  • Global Stocks Drop on Renewed Concerns About China (WSJ)
  • Iron Ore's Rally Stalls as Goldman to Citigroup Forecast Retreat (BBG)
  • EU and Turkey close to groundbreaking migrant deal (FT)
  • Carney's `Brexit' Stance Under Fire as BOE Accused of Bias (BBG)
  • Oil edges lower after Kuwait dents hopes for output freeze (Reuters)

Bears Exit Hibernation As Rally Fizzles On Dismal Chinese Trade Data; Commodities Slide; Gold Higher

Those algos who scrambled to paint yesterday's closing tape with that last second VIX slam sending the S&P back over 2,000, forgot one thing - the same thing that China also ignored - central bankers can not print trade, something we have repeated since 2011. The world got a harsh reminder of this last night when China reported the third largest drop in exports in history, which crashed by over 25%, the third biggest drop on record, and no, it was not just the base effect from last February's spike, as otherwise the combined January-February data would offset each other, instead it was a joint disaster, meaning one can't blame the Lunar New Year either.  In short, one can't really blame anything aside from the real culprit: despite all the lipstick that has been put on it, global trade is grinding to a halt.

China Trade Balance Plunges To 11-Month Lows As Exports Crash Over 25%

Worse than expected is an understatement. Things are not getting better in China as Exports crashed 25.4% YoY (the 3rd largest drop in history), almost double the 14.5% expectation and Imports tumbled 13.8%, the 16th month of YoY decline - the longest ever. Altogether this sent the trade surplus down to $32.6bn (missing expectations of $51bn) to 11-month lows. Stocks are mounting a modest rebound on this terrible data (moar stimulus hopes) but after $1 trillion of new credit in 2 months, is there seriously anyone left who thinks moar will help?

Iran Billionaire Who Pioneered "PetroGold" Sentenced To Death

Two months back, in a series of lengthy exposes we profiled the ins and outs of the “petrogold” trade that allowed Iran to skirt international sanctions that froze Tehran out of the banking system by way of conduits and shady go-betweens in Turkey and Dubai. Now, the man behind the Iranian side of the sanctions end-around has been sentenced to death in his own country. Did he really embezzle nearly $3 billion? Or was his demise preordained?

Did Fed's Fischer Stop The Squeeze?

With the S&P 500 trading back above 2,000, it appears The Fed needed to do something to tamp down the enthusiasm exhibited by this manic short squeeze. As Fed vice-chair unleashed the following: "We may be seeing the first stirrings of higher inflastion," the short-squeeze ended and everything reversed...