Exchange Traded Fund
As readers will recall, just after the abbreviated Thanksgiving session, there were some pretty dramatic afterhours fireworks, both in stocks, and in a variety of volatility indices, that of gold (^GVZ)most notably. As the charts below capture, the drop in the futures had offset basically the entire day's upside in the span of milliseconds, leaving many wondering just what had caused this. Luckily, courtesy of the Tabb Group's Paul Rowady we now know that this was yet another glitch borne out of the hyper-technological sophistication of the current marketplace, in which the smallest error can and will propagate through the system uncontrolled resulting in major losses for those who are aligned on the same side as the ponzi. In other words: it was yet another flash crash which luckily did not have a major impact as virtually no volume was being transacted in the market. All this merely means that Ben Bernanke, who is doing everything in his power to boost asset values, has increasingly more variables working against him as the system continues being pushed ever further away from its natural equilibrium, until one day it all just burns down.
Not content with holding the biggest paper short position in silver, JP Morgan is now intent on cornering the copper market, as the monopolist firm stretches its FRBNY-facilitated muscles in an attempt to stem the massive losses incurred via its silver short. As the Telegraph reports, following up on a story of a "rogue" purchaser who bought up $1.5 billion in copper on the LME, "the American investment bank JP Morgan is the mystery trader that grabbed more than half the copper on the London Metal Exchange." This is a huge copper purchase, and represents between 50% and 80% of the 350,000 tonnes in reserves, confirming that JPM is now the dominant manipulator in yet another commodity market. The purchase also pushed the price for immediate delivery to $8,700, the highest since October 2008. It is unclear how China, which is the biggest non-speculative end user, will react to this development, nor whether the CFTC will (ever) take any action against such blatant market manipulation. One thing is certain: the LME will do absolutely nothing: "Diarmuid O'Hegarty, head of compliance, said: "The LME has noted recent
comments about the current circumstances in the copper market. Such
circumstances are not unusual and the exchange is exercising its well
established procedures for maintaining an orderly market." He added that large trades were not a cause for concern because the market's
rules dictate that holders have to lend out a proportion of their stock to
ensure a smooth supply of the metal." And who would possibly assume that JPM may not follow the rules...
All who thought that China was merely posturing when it announced a few days back it was creating a fund to allow its domestic investor base to allocated capital to foreign gold ETF, may wish to reconsider after it was disclosed late last night that China gold imports jumped by 500% in the first 10 months compared to all of 2009 on concerns of rising inflation according to the Shanghai Gold Exchange.Other concerns probably include what is happening to the FX and stock market which have now moved on from cash flow to Keynesian failure discounting mechanisms: ironically the higher the S&P is pushed by the Brian Sack cabal, the more sovereign bonds are bought by the ECB, and the more bankrupt European countries are said to be doing perfectly ok by their new dictator Olli Rehn, the more gold will be bought across the world. China does not disappoint: from Bloomberg: "Imports gained to 209 metric tons compared with 45 tons for all of 2009, Shen Xiangrong, chairman of the bourse, told a conference in Shanghai today. China, the world’s largest producer and second-biggest user, doesn’t regularly publish gold-trade figures and rarely comments on its reserves." And that would be in the form of JPM's bogeyman: physical.
Following yesterday's completely non-arbitrary release by Jan Hatzius of his about face economic upgrade at precisely 4 minutes ahead of the Fed data dump, Goldman has released the first 5 trades of its top 2011 trades. Hopefully these trades will perform far better than the basket of 2010 trades which left Goldman clients flat at best (especially the FX component which was a total disaster and which Thomas Stolper apologized for yesterday). On the basis of its suddenly rosy outlook for the economy (as always, Goldman by definition is buying whetever a client is selling and vice verse) here are the first five trades that Goldman believes will be the best money makets for the next year.
1. Short $/CNY via 2yr NDFs, currently at about 6.4060, target of 5.9, expected potential return 6%
2. Long US large-cap Commercial Banks (BKX), at 44.76, target of 57, expected potential return +25%
3. Long US High Yield (Selling protection on the CDX HY index), at a current spread of 528, target of 450, expected potential return of 8%-9%
4. Long Nikkei 225 (NKY), at 9,988, target 12,000, expected potential return +20%
5. Long a Basket of Crude, Copper, Cotton/Soybeans and Platinum (‘CCCP’), indexed at 100, expected potential return 28%
China Approves Fund That Will Invest In Foreign Gold ETFs, Opening Avenue For Millions Of Mainland InvestorsSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 11/30/2010 15:26 -0500
And here is the catalyst: China has approved a fund that will invest in gold exchange-traded funds outside the country, opening the door to mainland China investors who face negative real interest rates on their bank deposits and want to hedge against inflation. Beijing-based Lion Fund Management Co. said they received approval from the China Securities Regulatory Commission on Monday to proceed with the fund. Next stop: gold much higher as the bubble mania is really unleased in such ETFs as GLD, UGL and PHYS.
The Renaissance woman of the international investment newsletter scene gives a wide ranging interview on Hedge Fund Radio. Bullish on the US dollar, despite the vast majority of traders happily positioning for the decline and fall of Uncle Buck. It’s simply a matter of betting on the simultaneous strengthening of the US economy and a slowdown in Europe. Cautious on Brazil, but Chile, Poland, Thailand, and India look hot. The Yuan can only go up. Searching for value in Greece. (EWZ) (UUP), (EUO), (PT), (EWZ), (TF), (PLND), (ECH), (PIN), (FXI), (GIFD), (PCY),
As long as the Chinese government hates foreign hedge funds and speculators, no one will make a killing buying the yuan. (CYB).
The next play in this soap opera will see “uncertainty” emigrate from the US to Europe, sending the dollar off to the races and the Euro in for rehab. Lindsay Lohan, eat your heart out. (FXE), (EUO).
While Bernanke was putting the finishing touches on QE2 in DC, 50 global financial regulators met at the New York Fed to discuss regulation of world's largest market. Instead of financial reform measures, what is being created is simply a massive new power center headed by the CFTC from which those at the top will vainly attempt to manipulate market prices and entrench favored institutions within the new framework.
Is A Dropping VIX Masking Rising "Fear" In Most Other Asset Classes... And Does Hedge Fund SPY Pair-Hedging Explain The Market Melt Up?Submitted by Tyler Durden on 11/22/2010 22:59 -0500
As the trading year draws to a close, and as the QE2 driven melt up shows little sign of relenting (or breaching the 1,200 S&P level), the ever popular VIX, or "fear index" continues to plumb new depths. For many this is a superficial sign of complacency and lack of risk of any major moves within stocks. However, as BNY's Nicholas Colas demonstrates, this is far from the truth as to what is happening below the surface. While highlighting the grind lower in the VIX, Colas observes that "the options market has been busy pricing in higher levels of perceived risk across a variety of asset classes, most notably investment grade bonds, silver, and emerging markets. In fact, of the 20 asset classes and industrial sectors for which we track risk pricing in the options market, 15 show heightened levels of investor concern for the upcoming 30 day period." How does Colas explain this remarkable divergence? "I am tempted to say that the sector IVs are actually better representatives of the market’s take on future volatility, and the lower expected volatility of the market as a whole comes from macro investors who think the next month will be smooth sailing. Conversely, those traders who use sector ETFs and their options to hedge specific single stock positions see a different and potentially more volatile story developing." We tend to agree with the second explanation, which also leads to another surprising conclusion...
Ever feel like this market just does not provide enough unique and suicidal ways for you to lose your hard stolen money within nanoseconds of trade execution? Never fear - here comes the TVIX, a levered third derivative bet on volatility: simply said, the TVIX will be the world's first double leveraged VIX ETF. According to the ETF creator, VelocityShares, "the TVIX and TVIZ ETNs allow traders to manage daily trading risks using a 2x leveraged view on the S&P VIX Short-Term Futures™ Index and S&P 500 VIX Mid-Term Futures™ Index, respectively, while the XIV and ZIV ETNs enable traders to manage daily trading risks using an inverse position on the direction of the volatility indices. The indices were created by Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC, a division of the McGraw Hill-Companies, Inc." Then again, why not just call these what they are: a novel way (brought to you via the synthetic CDO legacy product known as ETFs) to lose money with a 99.999% guarantee. As always, we wonder why anyone would trade this product, when, with much better odds, one would at least get comped in Vegas...
After a weeklong smackdown in muni securities of all kinds, both cash and synthetic (read CDO-like ETF time bombs), today for the first time we have seen confirmation that investors are starting to say enough. Reuters reports that for the first time since April 14, mutual fund investors withdrew a net $115 million from tax-exempt funds last week. "Funds are the largest players in the municipal market so to the extent there are outflows, that will put more upward pressure on rates[downward pressure on prices]? said Jack Bauer, managing director of fixed income at Manning & Napier, a money manager in Fairport, New York, who oversees $25 billion in assets. "It's been kind of ugly this week." See Jack Bauer is all confused - one would have though that 28 consecutive outflows from domestic stock funds may have put in just a little "downward pressure" on stocks. Wrong and wrong - in fact stocks have proven that they levitate best on fraud, mark-to-krazy klowns, and scammery precisely when redemptions and Fed-Citadel involvement is highest. Which is why we expect that once there is no money left in stock funds (a few weeks at this rate) and in muni funds soon, muni will actually surge to never before seen highs as the bizarro effect appears in full force, and whatever muni ETFs are out there will do an SRS circa November 2008.
“Uncertainty” is emigrating from the US to Europe, sending the dollar off to the races and the Euro in for rehab. Lindsay Lohan, eat your heart out. A reemergence of the “PIIGS” disease, concerns about the deteriorating quality of the lesser sovereign credits in Europe, is now unfolding as the triggering event.
The WGC has released its complete Third Quarter gold market outlook. To summarize: major demand is seen out of China and India, whose surging populations will buy ever more PM due to "rising income levels, high savings rates and strong economic growth." Demand is seen coming from the jewelry sector, as well as from institutions, including central banks, and a jump in industrial demand "on the back of renewed growth in the electronics industry, due to the majority of semi-conductors being wired by gold." Nonetheless, even as demand continues growing, supply is rising as well: "On the supply side, we reiterate our projection that total mine supply is likely to trend higher. This is due to mine project expansions, a ramping up of production to meet the recovery in gold demand and the diminishing scope for producer de-hedging in 2010. Higher supply is also expected to come from China, Australia and US, although this may be partially offset by lower output from countries such as South Africa and Peru due to declining ore grades and rising costs." Ultimately, the only important question is whether QE will ever end. Anything less than a Yes answer, means there is virtually no upside limit to gold, absent an occasional correction.
The country which has languished in 6th position in the world, with combined gold holdings of 1,054 tonnes (just behind the GLD ETF), may have finally awoken that it needs to buy about 7,000 tonnes of gold to catch up with the US, and its 8,133 tonnes (or even France with 2,435). China daily 21st Century Business Herald has just reported that: "China is considering raising its gold reserves, a move which would push
up gold prices in the future, a person providing consulting services to
the Chinese government said." Conveniently, China can now buy gold notably cheaper courtesy of a $100 dip in gold price as recorded over the past week, precipitated by... China inflation concerns. When next month the politburo reports below consensus inflation (as the number is imaginary to begin with), look for gold to surge, but not before China manages to load up at depressed prices.