Less than a month after the "shocking" election of Donald Trump as US president, the world prepares for another day of political shockwaves, this time out of Europe, when on Sunday all eyes will be on Italy and, to a slightly lesser extent, Austria.
"It's crazy. This is the explosion of an era. It's the apocalypse of the media, TV, the big newspapers, the intellectuals, the journalists… This is a wide-ranging F*** off." Italy is the next flashpoint. A “No” vote in Italy is virtually assured at this point. But it won’t be the end of the anti-elite surge. Voters in Europe’s biggest countries could soon throw out their “mainstream” parties in favor of populist and Eurosceptic alternatives...
Did Jeff Gundlach do it again? Shortly after the DoubleLine manager told Reuters yesterday afternoon that the Trump rally is ending, that "stocks have peaked" and that it is "too late to buy the Trump trade", US stocks tumbled to session lows, and have continued to drop overnight, with S&P futures down 0.3%, alongside sliding Asian and European markets.
Italians are angrier now than they’ve been since they hung Il Duce up by his heels in 1945. Italy has had no productive growth since 1999. Real GDP per person is smaller than it was at the turn of the century. That’s almost two decades of economic stagnation. By any measure, the Italian economy is in a deep depression. And things will probably get much worse. It’s no surprise Italians are in a revolutionary mood...
Some of the weirdest and most disturbing advertisements ever created are done so for military campaigns. They come in the form of propaganda leaflets, which are dropped by air or otherwise disseminated into a country or territory that is being invaded. The intention is to use psychology and symbolism to influence members of the general population, inciting fear and, ultimately, compliance.
"Geopolitical developments should be gauged from... non-traditional data sources (such as big data sentiment indicators, independent media outlets, etc.) given the failure of many traditional data sources to anticipate geopolitical developments this year."
Following a November to remember, which saw tremendous market gains following the election of Donald Trump, December has started off on the back foot, with US equity futures lower, European stocks halting a two day advance ahead of the Italian referendum, US Treasury yields higher and the US dollar backing away from a 9 month high.
European, Asian stocks rise as do S&P futures as OPEC ministers gathering in Vienna appeared to be set to announce a deal to cut oil production and prop up global prices. Oil has surged over 7% as a result, also pushing US TSY yields and the dollar higher.
European stocks were little changed and oil fell as investors assessed declining prospects for an OPEC deal and risks from Italy’s referendum. Asian stocks declined, while S&P futures pointed to a fractionally higher open, erasing 3 points from yesterday's drop.
It’s hard to overstate the threat posed by these two votes to the EU - the world’s largest economic entity - and by implication to the rest of the global financial system. Italy is the third biggest country in the EU, and France is the second. Let either pull out and the result might be dissolution and the end of the euro. So what does a fiat currency/fractional reserve banking Establishment do when confronted with such a looming catastrophe? What it always does of course: Cut interest rates and ramp up money creation in order to devalue the currency.