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Uncertain Market Digests Splintering Of Syria Pro-War Alliance





Overnight, the market continued to digest news out of the UK that the formerly solid pro-war alliance has splintered following a historic vote by the House of Commons, leaving Obama to "go it alone." The result was a rather sizable slamdown in both crude and gold, accelerating as Europe opened for trading, and pushing gold back under $1400. This happened even as data out of Europe showed that European unemployment remained at a record high 12.1%, while inflation missed expectations and printed at 1.3%, or below 2% for the seventh month. Earlier in the session, headline data out of Japan showed that inflation had risen at the fastest pace since 2008. However, before the deflation monster is proclaimed dead, the core-core figure (excluding foods and energy) of the Tokyo CPI was down 0.4% yoy, unchanged since June for three months, suggesting that prices are still largely driven by energy-related costs. In other words cost-push inflation is rampant, which is the worst possible scenario and means the BOJ's QE is going to all the wrong place.

 
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Frontrunning: August 29





  • UN Insecptors to leave Syria early, by Saturday morning (Reuters)
  • Yellen Plays Down Chances of Getting Fed Job (WSJ)
  • JPMorgan Bribe Probe Said to Expand in Asia as Spreadsheet Is Found (BBG)
  • No Section 8 for you: Wall Street’s Rental Bet Brings Quandary Housing Poor (BBG)
  • Euro zone, IMF to press Greece for foreign agency to sell assets (Reuters)
  • Brothels in Nevada Suffer as Web Disrupts Oldest Trade (BBG)
  • U.S., U.K. Face Delays in Push to Strike Syria (WSJ); U.S., U.K. Pressure for Action on Syria Hits UN Hurdle (BBG)
  • Renault Operating Chief Carlos Tavares Steps Down (WSJ)
  • Vodafone in talks with Verizon to sell out of U.S. venture (Reuters)
  • Dollar Seen Casting Off Euro Shackles as Fed Tapers (BBG)
 
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Frontrunning: August 26





  • Bankers Brace for Fed Wind-Down (WSJ)
  • A Veteran Saudi Power Player Works To Build Support to Topple Assad (WSJ)
  • Gunmen shoot at weapons experts' vehicle in Damascus: U.N (Reuters) - as long as it's not drones
  • ECB Council Members Split in Jackson Hole Over Rate Cuts (BBG)
  • Fed Officials Rebuff Coordination Calls as QE Taper Looms (BBG)
  • As Egyptians Ignore Curfew, Talk of a U.S.-Brotherhood Conspiracy (NYT)
  • Pipeline-Capacity Squeeze Reroutes Crude Oil (WSJ)
  • Lawmakers Probe Willful Abuses of Power by NSA Analysts (BBG)
  • Indictments Expected in Alleged Trading Code Theft (WSJ)
  • India’s ONGC takes Africa gasfield stake (FT)
  • Capital Flight Drains Reserves as Rupee, Rupiah Fall (BBG)
  • Banks scale back rates business (FT)
 
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Frontrunning: August 23





  • Lew warns Congress to strike debt ceiling deal (FT)
  • Central-Bank Moves Blur the View (WSJ)
  • Brazil, Indonesia launch measures to shore up their currencies (FT)
  • More mainstream media reminded about Fukushima - Radioactive ground water under Fukushima nears sea (AP)
  • Fukushima inspectors 'careless', Japan agency says, as nuclear crisis grows (Reuters)
  • New York Banker Arrested on Rape Charges in East Hampton (NYT)
  • This time they mean business, for real: CFTC Moves to Rein In High-Speed Traders (WSJ)
  • Britain operates secret monitoring station in Middle East (Reuters)
  • Moody’s considers downgrading top US banks (FT)
  • China's Bo calls wife mad after she testifies against him (Reuters)
  • JPMorgan Sub-New Normal Growth Seen Vexing Next Fed Chief (BBG)
  • SEC calls for cooling-off period for more staff (Reuters)
 
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Frontrunning: August 21





  • Obamacare, tepid U.S. growth fuel part-time hiring (Reuters)
  • Cameron was behind UK attempt to halt Snowden reports (Reuters), Britain defends detention of journalist's partner (Reuters)
  • Goldman Options Error Shows Peril Persists One Year After Knight (BBG)
  • China expresses 'shock' as Japan's nuclear crisis deepens  (Reuters)
  • Inquiry into China insurance firm rattles industry (Caixin)
  • Cheaper rivals eat into Apple’s China tablet share (FT)
  • Exporting fast food: Subway Targets Europe With as Many as 1,000 New Outlets in 2014 (BBG)
  • Reserve Bank of India boosts liquidity to ease pressure on banks (FT)
  • Justice Department Plans New Crisis-Related Cases (WSJ) - Holder doing his cutest attempt to pretend the TBTProsecute aren't
  • Syrian Opposition Alleges Gas Attack, Which Government Denies (WSJ)
 
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FOMC Minutes Jitters Push Risk Lower





More of the same downward drift this overnight trading session, with early Asian outflows coupled with a fresh record low in the Indian currency, driven in part by reports the Fukushima leak severity had been raised from Level 1 to Level 3, which however subsequently reversed following a weakening in the JPY and pushed the Nikkei from a steep early drop to a modest green close. China was unchanged even as Fan Jianping, chief economist at the State Information Center, said that a new reasonable range for China’s growth is 7%-9%, Xinhua said and ongoing liquidity additions by the PBOC. In Europe, newsflow was dominated early on by a Suddeutsche report that the third Greek bailout would be likely financed in part by EU budget as the reality that nothing is fixed in Europe slowly returns and fears that the latent and non-existent OMT will eventually have to be used. US futures have seen a modest risk off bias in part driven by concerns what today's key event, the FOMC minutes due out at 2 pm, would reveal (if anything new). Also on deck are Existing home sales at 10:00 am which expect a slight pick up to 5.15 million from a 5.08 million prior print.  Moments ago the latest weekly MBA Mortgage Applications number came out and, to nobody surprise, it posted the last weekly decline, dropping another 4.6% with conventional refis dropping for the 10th consecutive week.

 
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18 Signs That Global Financial Markets Are Entering A Vicious Circle





The yield on 10 year U.S. Treasuries is skyrocketing, the Dow has been down for 5 days in a row and troubling economic news is pouring in from all over the planet.  The much anticipated "financial correction" is rapidly approaching, and investors are starting to race for the exits.  We have not seen so many financial trouble signs all come together at one time like this since just prior to the last major financial crisis.  It is almost as if a "perfect storm" is brewing, and a lot of the "smart money" has already gotten out of stocks and bonds. Of course a lot of people believe that we will never see another major financial crisis like we experienced in 2008 ever again.  A lot of people think that this type of "doom and gloom" talk is foolish.  It is those kinds of people that did not see the last financial crash coming and that are choosing not to prepare for the next one even though the warning signs are exceedingly clear.  The following are 18 signs that global financial markets are heading for a vicious circle...

 
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Merkel Has Some Words Of Encouragement... Or Is That Warning?





Germany's Angela Merkel visited the German concentration camp in Dachau - the first such visit by a sitting German Chancellor-  where one may say, she could have picked her words a tad more wisely:

  • MERKEL SAYS NATIONS SHARING A CURRENCY WILL NEVER GO TO WAR
  • MERKEL SAYS 'WORTH IT' TO FIGHT FOR UNITED EUROPE

US civil war counterfactual aside, the stunned European population was confused by the implication of her words: is it that Germany will keep ploughing German funds to keep a pacifist, socialist dream alive (which is really just a front to keep Deutsche Bank and its $50+ trillion in derivatives solvent) even as hours ago her own Finance Minister admitted that a third (and certainly not last) bailout of Greece is now just a matter of time...  or was it simply a warning to Greece, Cyprus and anyone else contemplating a true recovery, one which begins with their own currency, and maybe with a few Panzers crossing the border?

 
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Frontrunning: August 20





  • So no great rotation into EM? Capital Flows Back to U.S. as Markets Slump Across Asia (BBG)
  • Muslim Brotherhood leader arrested in Egypt (Reuters)
  • Allies Thwart America in Egypt: Israel, Saudis and U.A.E. Support Military Moves (WSJ)
  • Dear Bloomberg: when you buy the loans of a distressed retailer, you are not betting on a rebound, you are betting on being the fulcrum security in a bankruptcy: Kyle Bass Said to Bet on J.C. Penney Comeback With Loan Purchase (BBG)
  • Bubbles Bloom Anew in Desert as Buyers Wager on Las Vegas (BBG)
  • Britain rejects Spanish request for Gibraltar talks (Reuters)
  • U.K. Mortgage Lending Rises to Highest Since Lehman Collapse (BBG)
  • Pension Funds Dispute Math in Detroit Bankruptcy (WSJ)
  • Christie Says Gayness Inborn as He Signs Therapy Measure (BBG)
 
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Overnight Safety Bid For 10 Year TSYs Offsets USD Weakness, Keeps Futures Rangebound





Following yet another rout in Asia overnight, which since shifted over to Europe, US equity futures have stabilized as a result of a modest buying/short-covering spree in the 10 Year which after threatening to blow out in the 2.90% range and above, instead fell back to 2.81%. Yet algos appear confused by the seeming USD weakness in the past few hours (EURUSD just briefly rose over 1.34) and instead of ploughing head first into stock futures have only modestly bid them up and are keeping the DJIA futs just above the sacred to the vacuum tube world 15,000 mark. A lower USDJPY (heavily correlated to the ES) did not help, after it was pushed south by more comments out of Japan that a sales tax hike is inevitable which then also means a lower budget deficit, less monetization, less Japanese QE and all the other waterfall effect the US Fed is slogging through. Keep an eye on the 10 Year and on the USD: which signal wins out will determine whether equities rise or fall, and with speculation about what tomorrow's minutes bring rife, it is anybody's bet whether we get the 10th red close out of 12 in the S&P500.

 
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Deutsche: "Either The Central Banks Lose Credibility Soon Or The Markets Have Overstretched Themselves"





Some unpleasant observations from Deutsche Bank below for fans of either central planning and/or risk assets, as having one's cake and eating it too is no longer an option, and one or the other is finally set to snap. To wit: "Yield curves are very steep suggesting a challenge to central bank guidance credibility is at a tipping point. Either the data really are strong and the central banks lose credibility soon or the markets have overstretched themselves, allowing for a partial recovery in lower rates." A "tweeted out" Bill Gross is praying to the Newport gods it's the latter.

 
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Frontrunning: August 19





  • Egypt, U.S. on Collision Course (WSJ), Gunmen kill 24 Egyptian police in Sinai ambush (Reuters)
  • India’s efforts fail to prevent new rupee low (FT)
  • More bad news for AAPL: Steve Jobs Biopic Crashes on Opening Weekend (WSJ)
  • "Sustainable" - U.S. Stocks Beat BRICs by Most Ever Amid Market Flight (BBG)
  • Merkel cancels election rally after hostage taking (Reuters)
  • Some day, Abenomics might work... Not today though: Japan Exports Rise Most Since ’10 as Deficit Swells (BBG)
  • China July Home Prices Rise as Nation Seeks Long-Term Policy (BBG)
  • Spanish Bank’s Bad Loan Ratio Rises to Record in June (Reuters)
  • Recovery... for some - Ferrari NART Spyder Sets $27.5 Million Auction Record (BBG)
  • Bund yields hit 17-month high, rupee slumps (Reuters)
  • Regulatory Headaches Worsen for J.P. Morgan (WSJ)
 
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Deutsche Bank Hopes "Not All Margin Calls Come At Once In Case Of A Sell-Off"





A recent survey of asset managers globally, managing USD 27.4 trillion between them, found that 78% of defined-benefit plans would need annual returns of at least 5% per year to meet their commitments, while 19% required more than 8%, "a target of 5% per year can be reached but only by using leverage, shorting, and derivavtives." And sure enough, as Deutsche Bank (DB) reports, in short, investors have rarely been more levered than today! According to DB, a MoM change in NYSE margin debt >10% has to be taken as a critical warning signal as there are astonishing similarities in the sequence of events among all crises. As the S&P 500 just hit a new all-time high, investors might want to ask themselves when it is a good time to become more cautious – yesterday, in our view. Simply put, the higher margin debt levels rise, the more fragile the underlying basis on which prices trade; with even a less severe sell-off in equities capable of triggering a collapse.

 
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Guest Post: British PM Calls On Communities To Support Fracking





British Prime Minister David Cameron has written an article in the Daily Telegraph in which he has called for all UK communities to show support for the fracking industry, and welcome the coming shale gas boom, stating that such a boom will lower energy bills and create jobs. Despite his demand for Brits to do the patriotic thing, "experts from Ofgem to Deutsche Bank to drilling company Cuadrilla itself argue that UK shale will not bring down bills, because, unlike the US, the UK is part of a huge European gas market.”

 
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