Following yesterday's dramatic geopolitical shock, U.S. equity index futures rise as Russia has not escalated the confrontation with Turkey as some had feared, while Asian shares fall, reversing earlier gains. European stocks are rallying and the euro is falling on the back of a Reuters report that the ECB is mulling new measures to prop up lending, although it’s not clear at this point what the real impact from these measures would be.
It had been a relatively quiet session overnight when as reported previously, the geopolitical situation in the middle east changed dramatically in a moment, when NATO-member country Turkey downed a Russian fighter jet allegedly over Turkish territory even though the plane crashed in Syria, and whose pilots may have been captured by local rebel forces. The news promptly slammed Turkish assets and FX, sending the Lira tumbling, pushing lower European stocks and US equity futures while sending 2 Year German Bunds to record negative yields.
"The hardest questions we are trying to reconcile here are how is that possible to see all these signs of weakness under the surface being balanced by very strong equity markets and upbeat employment picture. One of these sides has to be wrong..."
If you think you're fighting the market, or the banks, or the Fed, you're dead wrong!
The hardest questions we are trying to reconcile here are how is that possible to see all these signs of weakness under the surface – including weak commodities, tightening credit, retrenching consumer spending – being balanced by very strong equity markets and upbeat employment picture. One of these sides has to be wrong in its assessment of the current macro environment, and seeing both of them extending well into the future appears unlikely to us.
After mounting a solid bounce off the September lows, European equity markets are now running into resistance.
Futures are modestly higher in early trading having tracked the USDJPY once again almost tick for tick, with the carry trade of choice rising to 123 shortly after Mario Draghi's latest speech pushed the dollar strong initially only to see most gains promptly evaporate against both the Yen and the Euro. European shares are likewise little changed, after gaining earlier, while Asian stocks rise; oil also advanced in early trading only to drop to its lowest overnight level moments ago, a few dimes over $40, with aluminum and copper both posting modest increases.
While it is still unclear just why the FOMC Minutes which are said to have made a December liftoff "more likely" unleashed a dramatic market rally, one which sent both stocks and TSYs higher, the sentiment continued overnight, with both Asian stocks surging on the US momentum, as well as Europe, where the DAX gapped solidly above the 200 DMA as most European shares advanced, led by resources, travel stocks. U.S. futures continue their ramp higher, and at last check were another 8 points, or 0.4%, in the green. But if the Fed Minutes were enough to unleash the latest leg in this rally, than the ECB's own minutes due also today, should send futures back over 2100 without much difficult, regardless of their actual content.
"The signals across asset classes are diverging incredibly," warns Macro Risk Advisors' Dean Curnutt, "and we should all be afraid." All of that commodity volatility is rolling back into corporate credit and that, inevitably will dramatically impact equity markets (explicitly through higher funding costs weighing on earnings or implicitly through lower buybacks and higher risk premia), "the illiquidity and implied defaults that we are seeing in credit markets are not at all priced into a 2060 S&P."
Global Stocks Tread Water After Two Consecutive Terrorist Scares; Oil Rises, Industrial Metals TumbleSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 11/18/2015 07:03 -0500
If this weekend's gruesome terrorist attack on Paris ended up being hugely bullish for stocks, then two subsequent events, a stadium-evacuation scare in Hannover (where Angela Merkel was supposed to be present) and a raid in north Paris which left several dead in the ongoing manhunt against the alleged ISIS mastermind, appear to have but some question into if not stocks then algos whether a rising wave of terrorist hatred across Europe is truly what central bankers need to unleash more QE. That said, we expect the current weakness to last only until the traditional USDJPY carry ramp pushes stocks traditionally higher.
I had never heard the term "safe space" until just a few days ago, but it's a zone in which free speech is completely forbidden, for fear of hurting the feelings of some special snowflake.
The Trade-Weighted US Dollar has risen almost 19% over the past 18 months - the fastest pace of increase on record - and is now at its highest level since 2003. As we noted previously, this is not unequivocally good for American corporate profits... and if you believe The Fed's Stan Fischer - the worst effects of this soaring exchange rate are yet to come... Most of the impact of exchange rate moves come after that first year. So we’re only just getting into the business end of the impact of the dollar’s strength on the US economy. And the Fed are about to hike?
While there are many that continue to dismiss individual "economic data points" in order to promote a "bullish bias" for the equity markets, it is more important to accumulate the "weight of evidence." The rising inventory levels, weak consumption, and plunging imports all suggest that the domestic consumer is much weaker than currently believed. The last time this combination of data points collided was just prior to the start of the last recession. But then again, this is where "economic theory" collides with "Main Street realities." Place your bets carefully.
· The tragic events in Paris are set to dictate price action at the beginning of the week in Europe
· The US sees an increase in tier 1 data this week as well as the release of the minutes from last month’s Fed meeting
Global policymakers have gone to incredible measures to stabilize market, financial and economic backdrops. Yet reflationary measures will continue to only further destabilize. When policy-induced “risk on” is overpowering global securities markets, fragilities remain well concealed. Fragilities, however, swiftly manifest with the reappearance of “risk off.” Rather quickly securities markets demonstrate their proclivity for illiquidity and so-called “flash crashes.” So after an unsettled week in global markets, the critical issue is whether “risk on” is giving way to “risk off” dynamics.