Global Economy

Frontrunning: August 21

  • No End in Sight for Oil Glut (WSJ)
  • Dozens of Clinton emails were classified from the start, U.S. rules suggest (Reuters)
  • China August Manufacturing Activity Hits Lowest Level Since 2009 (WSJ)
  • German Manufacturing Strengthens as Economy Shifts Up a Gear (BBG)
  • Israel responds to rocket attack with protest and air strikes (FT)
  • ASX carnage: 2015 fast becoming a year to forget  (Canberra Times)
  • Hong Kong Stocks Enter Bear Market After Falling From April Peak (BBG)

Chinese Stocks Crash To "Red Line" Support, US Futures Rebound Then Sink Again

Perhaps the biggest surprise about the overnight Chinese stock rout is which followed the lowest manufacturing PMI since March 2009, is that it happened despite repeat sellside pleas for a PBOC RRR cut as soon as this weekend: usually that alone would have been sufficient to push the market back into the green, and it almost worked when in the afternoon session stocks rebounded after dropping as much as 4.7% below the "hard" floor of 3500, but then a second bout of selling just before the close took Chinese stocks right back to the lows with the Shanghai Composite closing at 3,507, down 4.3% on the day, having wiped out the entire 18% rebound from July 8 when the PBOC first threatened both sellers and shorters with arrest.

The Unlikely Rise Of Donald Trump And Bernie Sanders

The rise of populism is not just a U.S. issue. Globalization and deregulation, especially with regard to the open adoption of new technology and work structures, is increasingly being called into question. As we have discussed previously, there is increasing potential that major political and economic changes will emerge from this vote. The emergence of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders is a reflection that the populists want a change in the direction of American policy. We will be watching closely to see whether any serious changes result.

The S&P's 13th Trip Thru 2,100 Since Feb 13th: Call It Monetary Rigor Mortis - The Bull Is Dead

The robo machines pushed their snouts through 2100 on the S&P index again yesterday. This was the 13th time since, well, February 13th that this line has been re-penetrated from below. But don’t call it an omen of bad luck; its more like monetary rigor mortis. The bull market is dead, but the robo-machines and talking heads of bubble vision just don’t know it yet.

Hilsenrath Warns Fed Is Out Of Ammo, "Policy Makers Resorting To Backup, Backup Plans"

As the U.S. economic expansion ages and clouds gather overseas, policy makers worry about recession. But, as WSJ's Jon Hilsenrath warns, their concern isn’t that a downturn is imminent but whether they will have firepower to fight back when one does arrive. "The world economy is like an ocean liner without lifeboats,” economists at HSBC Bank explained, and as looming threats are a reminder that the slow-growing global economy is just a shock away from peril, with rates already at zero, Douglas Elmendorf, the recently departed director of the CBO, warned, "policy makers are thinking about their backup, backup plans."

Walmart Stock Slides After EPS Miss, Profits Tumble, Full Year Guidance Slashed

It may not rely on such tech bubble (ver 1.0 and 2.0) buzzwords as eyeballs, clicks, "story", "sharing", "hyperxxxx, "non-GAAP" and so on, in fact with 2.2 million worldwide employees Wal-Mart is as old-school as it gets, which is why the fact that what was once the world's most valuable retailer (until Amazon dethroned it a month ago) just reported not only a miss, on tumbling operating earnings, but slashed its guidance by 7%, should be very troubling to anyone who still looks as such trivial things as "fundamentals" and how these reflect the even more trivial "economy."

"Global Shock Absorber" China Holds Currency Stable, Margin Debt Rises For 7th Day

Offshore Yuan continues to trade at a discount to onshore against the USD (imply a modest further devaluation is due) but the spread is narrowing and today's practically unch Yuan fix is dragging USDCNH lower (stronger Yuan). Yesterday's afternoon session ramp in stocks managed to extend its gains as margin debt rises for the 7th straight day. The PBOC injects 120 bn Yuan liquidity via 7-day reverse-repo (notably more than the 50bn maturing), as HSBC's Stephen King concludes, the message from last week's surprise devaluation is clear - China no longer wants to play the "global shock absorber" role - instead is more focused on domestic instability... and there is no other nation yet willing (or able) to shoulder the responsibility.

The Fed Is Scared To Raise Rates, Ron Paul Warns "Everything Is Too Vulnerable"

The Fed is too scared to raise interest rates in the middle of an already weak recovery and risk sending the U.S. economy back into recession, or worse... The Fed chief "does not want to be responsible for the depression that I think we’ve been in the midst of all along," Paul added, "everything is vulnerable, so we’re living in very dangerous times."