"It’s like a pig on LSD. You don’t know which way it’s going to run"...
In the aftermath of Yellen's "hung hold" decision, which left the world confused if the economy is getting better or worse, global equity markets proceeded to take both Europe and Japan to task, trying to push one of the last two remaining central banks to boost their QE. And until this morning it was unclear who was going to take the lead. Then, following comments over the past several hours from ECB governing council members Ewald Nowotny and Bostjan Jazbec, as well as a well-directed leak via Market News, we got confirmation that anyone hoping for Mario Draghi to blink first may be disappointed this time around.
US Futures Surge Nearly 30 Points To Overnight Highs After Tumbling On Worst Chinese Data In 6 YearsSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/23/2015 06:55 -0400
In many ways, the overnight market has so far been a reversal of yesterday, when a stable Asia session (with China stocks rising) gave way to a European tumble which in turn dragged the US lower.
Yellen's Last Hurrah: at this point, Janet "the antichrist" Yellen will have license to do Whatever The Hell She Wants to "fix" things. This will be her last free pass to do so.
Futures Plunge On Renewed Growth, Central Bank Fears; Volkswagen Shares Crash As Default Risk SurgesSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/22/2015 06:49 -0400
While Asian trading overnight started off on the right foot, chasing US momentum higher, things rapidly shifted once Europe opened as attention moved back to global growth fears, global central banks losing credibility, as well as miners and the ongoing Volkswagen fiasco.
The "Economissed" Track Record Revisited: Last Month, 82% Of "Experts" Expected A September Fed HikeSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/21/2015 15:55 -0400
Because the only people worse at their jobs than weathermen are economists...
After sliding early in Sunday pre-market trade, overnight US equity futures managed to rebound on the now traditional low-volume levitation from a low of 1938 to just over 1950 at last check, ignoring the biggest single-name blowup story this morning which is the 23% collapse in Volkswagen shares, and instead have piggybacked on what we said was the last Hail Mary for the market: the hope of more QE from either the ECB or the BOJ. Tonight, it was the latter and while Japan's market are closed until Thursday for public holidays, its currency which is the world's preferred carry trade and the primary driver alongside VIX manipulation of the S&P500, has jumped from a low of just over 119 on Friday morning to a high of 120.4, pushing the entire US stock market with it.
Ever since Simon Potter's 2012 arrival as head of The NYFed's trading desk, the manipulation of VIX (and thus its reflexive levered tail wagging the algo-driven dog of the indices) has been front-and-center day-after-day in the so-called US equity 'market'. While only fringe-blogs have noticed this in the past, now The FT admits that not only was recent volatility in markets exacerbated by VIX ETFs (thus confirming the tail-wagging-dog analogy), and further, the nature of the link between VIX ETFs and VIX Futures (rebalancing) enables frontrunning which serves to reinforce any trend into the close and thus manipulate the markets.
On Thursday, the Fed made it clear that its reaction function has changed. "Data dependency" is gone (or at least relegated to the backburner in times of global turmoil), and international and financial market developments are now officially guiding the FOMC's (tentative) hand. This epochal shift has left market participants asking one very simple question: "Ok, now what?"
After so many years of the “new normal,” we have to be reminded just how extraordinary — and unprecedented — the Fed’s actions since 2008 have been. But does it not occur to bankers, much less the media breathlessly covering stock and bond markets, that these actions have set America on a hopelessly dangerous and unsustainable path? Or that placing so much economic power in the hands of a select few might not end well?
What was one "one and done", just became "none and done" as the Fed will no longer hike in 2015 and will certainly think twice before hiking ahead of the presidential election in 2016. By then the inventory liquidation-driven recession will be upon the US and the Fed will be looking at either NIRP or QE4. Worse, the Fed just admitted it is as, if not more concerned, with the market than with the economy. Worst, suddenly the market no longer wants a... dovish Fed?
Despite the approval of various Asian nation officials (e.g. Japan's Amari: "Fed decision appropriate"), it appears non-hawkishness is not enough to keep the dream alive. Japan's Nikkei 225 is down over 600 points from its post-FOMC spike highs, and USDJPY has tumbled over 1 handle - back below 120.00. Chinese stocks are extending losses after last night's late tumble, as ironically, China's securities regulator has uncovered a number of market manipulators who boosted prices of some stocks to sky-high levels during the peak of the bull market, attracting numerous followers who have suffered heavy losses in the recent market crash. The PBOC strengthened the Yuan fix for the 2nd day in a row (by the most in 2 weeks).
The long awaited day is finally here by which we, of course, mean the day when nobody has any idea what the Fed will do, the Fed included. Putting today in perspective, there have been just about 700 rate cuts globally in the 3,367 days since the last Fed rate hike on June 29, 2006, while central banks have bought $15 trillion in assets, and vast portions of the world are now in negative interest rate territory.
For those wondering about the extent to which falling discount rates have served to create a giant, multi-hundred billion dollar underfunded liability for S&P companies, look no further...
"If only The Fed would get out of the way... Monetary policy designed to spare us from pain has instead made the system more vulnerable to a crash."