Gluskin Sheff

The Italian Job: "How Did Things Go So Bad?"

How on earth did things go so wrong? Could it be as simple as power-mongering and greed? To rob a line from the 2003 Italian Job, “There are two kinds of thieves in this world: The ones who steal to enrich their lives, and those who steal to define their lives.” Could it be that average working Italians, especially those who have been around for a good long while, feel as if they’ve been victims of both of the two kinds of theft, doubly wronged? “Basta!” their voices scream in defiance. Enough is enough!

Frontrunning: March 18

  • Dow's Freakish Bounce Makes Investors Whole, Can't Erase Doubts (BBG)
  • R.I.P. Dollar Rally as Dovish Fed Spurs Worst Slump Since 2011 (BBG)
  • Global Currencies Soar, Defying Central Bankers (WSJ)
  • Oil hits 2016 high above $42 on production and demand outlook (Reuters)
  • The U.S. Is Exporting Its Oil Everywhere (BBG)
  • Hillary Clinton’s Allies Launch Plan to Undercut Donald Trump Now (WSJ)

David Rosenberg Has A Question For His Clients

David Rosenberg, formerly of Merrill Lynch and currently of Gluskin Sheff, who famously flip-flopped from being a self-described permabear to uber-bull last summer for the one reason that has yet to manifest itself in any way, shape or form, namely declaring that wage inflation as imminent (it wasn't, but perhaps Mr. Rosenberg was merely forecasting the trajectory of his own wages) and generally an end to deflation, has a rhetorical question for his paying clients, as asked in his letter to investors from January 2. To wit: "THIS IS WHAT PASSES FOR ANALYSIS?" We too follow up with an identical question not only for Mr. Rosenberg's clients, but for our own readers.

With Statements Like "This Will Likely Not End Very Well", Is David Rosenberg A Bear Again?

While we fully understand that when selling institutionally-priced newsletters to institutions (not retail for one simple reason: lack of "other people's money" to spend) one will have a far more lucrative career as a bull than as a bear simply because insecure (that would be most of them) institutional "strategists" prefer to surround themselves in cognitive bias-reinforcing groupthink just to convince themselves they are right, as the rating-agency era confirmed, one thing we are very confused by is whether David Rosenberg, who famously flipped from bear to bull a little over a year ago (recall David Rosenberg: Here’s why I’m bullish on the US economy), preaching a "wage-inflation" driven bout of economic growth which has not only not materialized, but the 10 Year recently hit 2014 lows, is now back to being a bear.

David Rosenberg Turns Bullish, Earns $3.1 Million

In early 2013, many were mystified when one of the most vocal deflationists, and hence stock market bears, David Rosenberg, turned furiously bullish. Just what was the motive behind this transformation many wondered? Thanks to a just filed Gluskin Sheff compensation table, we can put all such lingering questions to rest: the reason, or rather reasons: 3,082,441... all-cash.

Frontrunning: September 26

  • The new normal name of a broken market: glitches - NYSE, Nasdaq Consider Cooperating to Address Glitches (WSJ)
  • Early Thursday Humor: Abe Tells Wall Street Japan’s Economy Is Exceptionally Good (BBG)
  • Rising Rates Seen Squeezing Swaps Income at Biggest Banks (BBG)
  • JPMorgan Mortgage Talks Said to Discuss $11 Billion Deal (BBG)
  • Can't make this up: HFT firm "finds" Fed did not leak data early to benefit HFT firms (FT)
  • Hertz Cuts Full-Year Forecast on Weak U.S. Airport Rentals (BBG)
  • Greece does not need third bailout, seeks debt 'reprofiling' - deputy PM (Reuters) - right, it needs a fourth and fifth
  • Hezbollah gambles all in Syria (Reuters)
  • Twitter Adds J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley as Bankers on IPO (WSJ)
  • Messi in Court Shows Tax Collectors Set to Pursue Star Athletes (BBG)

David Rosenberg - The Potemkin Rally

Gluskin Sheff's David Rosenberg exclaims we are currently are witnessing the Potemkin rally (the phrase Potemkin villages was originally used to describe a fake village, built only to impress). The term, however, is now used, typically in politics and economics, to describe any construction (literal or figurative) built solely to deceive others into thinking that some situation is better than it really is. Ben Bernanke, recently proclaimed “The Hero” by Atlantic Magazine, is the “Wizard of Potemkin.” Since 2009 Bernanke has engage in massive monetary experiments. These experiments lead to future dislocations. There is no doubt that the Fed wants inflation. The problem is they may get more than they ask for. We are currently witnessing the slowest economic recovery of any post-WWII period. However, It is important to challenge your thought process. Read material that challenges your views. Here are David's rules...

Just Two 'Recession' Indicators

Monday's income and spending (and implicitly 'saving') data provided plenty of fodder at the headline level for any and every opinion. We explained in great detail just how weak the data really was (here and here). But the following two charts suggest that any optimism of organic consumption-led exuberance is completely misplaced. Retail sales of clothing is growing at the slowest pace since 2010; but while major store sales are about to drop negative YoY for the first time in over 3 years, the utter collapse in general merchandise sales is worse that at the peak of the last recession at -5%. It seems tough to see how a nation with an economy built on 70% consumption is not in a recessionary environment. And while this alone is a dismal signal for the discretionary upside of the US economy/consumer; as Gluskin Sheff's David Rosenberg points out real personal income net of transfer receipts plunged at a stunning 5.8% annual rate in Q1. The other seven times we have seen such a collapse, the economy was either in recession of just coming out of one. But apart from that, everything is fine...

Spot The "Housing Recovery" Disconnect(s)

Confused about the latest disconnect between reality and propaganda, this time affecting the (foreclosure-stuffed) housing "recovery" which has become the only upside that the bulls can point to when demonstrating the effectiveness of QE now that the latest attempt at economic recovery has failed miserably both in the US and globally? Gluskin Sheff's David Rosenberg is here to clear any confusion.