Hong Kong

"If You Can't Touch It, You Don't Own It"

The pending Brexit has, not surprisingly, caused a shakeup in the investment world, particularly in the UK. Of particular note is that, recently, asset management firms in Britain began refusing their clients the right to cash out of their mutual funds. Of the £35 billion invested in such funds, just under £20 billion has been affected. The lesson to take away here is that, if you can’t touch it, you don’t own it. Banks and fund management firms can freeze your wealth, so that you can’t access it. Governments and banks can confiscate your wealth. If you don’t have the power to put your hands on your wealth on demand, you don’t own it.

US Futures Rebound Despite Global Stock Weakness As USDJPY Ramps HIgher

After breaking a multi-year stretch of 9 daily record highs in the Dow Jones, overnight global markets saw some early weakness with Asian stocks retreating after BOJ chief Kuroda dashed hopes for so-called helicopter money, triggering yen’s steepest rally in a month and pulling the Nikkei lower by 1.1%. This however did not last long, and around the European open the traditional ramp in the USDJPY helped European equities shrug off early downside, while US equity futures have already recovered half of yesterday's losses.

Yen Soars, Stocks Slide After Kuroda Says "No Need Or Possibility For Helicopter Money"

In a surprising rejection of Ben Bernanke, BOJ governor Haruhiko Kuroda said that there will be no helicopter money in Japan, amid increasing speculation over monetary and fiscal policy in the world’s third-largest economy. Given the current institutional setting, there is "no need and no possibility for helicopter money," Kuroda said in a BBC Radio 4 program that was broadcast Thursday. “At this moment, the Bank of Japan has three options with quantitative and qualitative easing with negative interest rates."

Art Sales Tumble: Christie's Reports 38% Plunge In First Half Sales

There is yet another confirmation that the slowdown in luxury spending continues, nowhere more so than in the world of "luxury" art. As the WSJ reports, Christie said it sold $3 billion in art during the first half of the year, down a third from the same period last year. Contemporary art, long the engine of Christie’s market dominance, was hardest hit, its $788 million in auction sales down 45% from a year earlier. Sotheby's didn't fare better: the New York-based auction house said first half sales dropped a quarter from the year before

US Futures Rise To Session Highs, Set For Another Record Open; Global Stocks Jump

After yesterday's positive close in the Dow Jones, which hasn't had a losing day since July 7 and which took the series of consecutive green closes to 8 in a row - the longest stretch since 2013 - the index will look to lock in its 9th green day in a row with futures currently trading well in the green. It's not just the US - equities edged higher in Asia and Europe as positive earnings results from some of the world’s biggest companies countered concern the global economy is losing steam. The dollar strengthened while gold retreated.

US Futures Dip, European Stocks Slide After EU Court Slams Italian Bank Bailout Plans

After a head-scratching S&P500 rally - which not even Goldman has been able to justify - pushed stocks to new all time highs with seemingly daily record highs regardless of fundamentals or geopolitical troubles, overnight US equity futures dipped modestly, tracking weak European stocks as demand for safe haven assets including U.S. Treasuries and gold rises. Asian stocks outside Japan fall. Crude oil trades near $45 a barrel. 

US Futures Rebound Sharply From Friday's Coup Fears, Focus Shifts To M&A

Having panciked briefly on Friday night on news of a Turkish coup, which has since not only failed but been cast away as speculation rises that it was staged and designed to give Erdogan even more authoritarian power, markets have moved on and are now focusing on the main overnight event which was the surprising $32 billion bid by Japan's SoftBank for U.K.’s semiconductor giant ARM which has sent comparable semis higher in European trading and pushing the Stoxx Europe 600 Index up by 0.6%, after surging 3.2% last week. After sliding sharply on Friday, US equity futures are up 0.1% in early trading.

How Did China's GDP Beat? By "Shoveling A Stunning Amount Of Cash Into The Economy"

China's modest GDP stabilization has come at a cost, a big one. Instead of tackling a debt pile estimated by Rabobank at a gargantuan 3.5x of the economy’s size, policy makers are only making it worse with a renewed credit binge. "The amount of cash Beijing is shoveling into the economy is stunning," said Andrew Collier.

Global Stocks, Futures Rise On Disappointing Chinese Trade Data, Hopes For More Central Bank Intervention

In an otherwise quiet overnight session, which among other things saw Germany sell 10Y Bunds with a zero coupon and a negative yield (-0.05%) for the first time ever (despite being uncovered with just €4.038BN sold below the €5.00BN target) anyone hoping for a confirmation that China will be able to prop up the world economy once more, was left disappointed when earlier this morning China reported June exports and imports that once again dropped substantially in dollar terms as soft demand at home and abroad continued to weigh on the world’s largest trading nation.

China To Use Pension Funds As $300 Billion "Plunge Protection Team"

The country’s local retirement savings managers, which manage about $300 billion, are handing over some of their cash to the National Council for Social Security Fund, which will oversee their investments in securities including equities. Why the shift? Simple: to help stabilize markets during the next rout. During last year’s tumble, policy makers armed state-run investing company China Securities Finance Corp. with more than $480 billion to try and limit declines. Now it's the pensions' turn.

WalMart Tries Subtle Cost Cutting Measures In China And It Backfires Spectacularly

WalMart is tinkering with employee work hours in order to try and figure out a way to reduce costs but make it appear as though that isn't the case. This time, however, the company is testing it out in China, which unlike the US is unionized and will be much more disruptive to operations as the unions begin to protest the change in hours.

European Stocks Storm Higher As Bank Fears Subside; US Futures Flat

After yesterday's afternoon surge in US stocks, facilitated by the "uncertain" Fed's FOMC Minutes, today the rest of global market are playing catch up with European stocks rebounding from one week lows, snapping the longest losing streak in three weeks, as well as Asia where most stock markets climbed, led by gains among energy producers as crude prices advanced, while a stronger yen weighed on Japanese shares.

Goldman Reveals How China Is Covering Up Hundreds Of Billions In Capital Outflows

Far from being fixed, China's capital outflow and FX intervention (and resultant reserve depletion) problems are only getting worse by the month. Only now, the PBOC is actively covering them up. Conveniently Goldman has disclosed precisely how the PBOC has covered up as much as $170 billion in FX outflows in the first quarter, more than 100% of the officially reported $123 billion. In other words, instead of $330 billion in Chinese FX outflows since October, the real number is 50% greater, or half a trillion. Here's the math.