There’s more than a whiff of 2008 in the air. The sources of systemic financial sector risk are different this time (they always are), but China and the global industrial/commodity complex are even larger tectonic plates than the US housing market, and their shifts are no less destructive. There’s also more than a whiff of 1938 in the air, as we have a Fed that is apparently hell-bent on raising rates even as a Category 5 deflationary hurricane heads our way, even as the yield curve continues to flatten.
Following a comprehensive review of China's housing market, we now realize it's much worse than the consensus understands.
Most Americans will still welcome low prices at the pump. But in the oil boom towns of yesterday, the slowdown is very much being felt - "The jobs are leaving, and if an area gets depopulated, they can't take the houses with them and that's dangerous for the housing market."
“Deutsche Bank AG officials are reviewing whether some employees exaggerated demand as they marketed new securities backed by risky auto loans, potentially suppressing yields for investors,” Bloomberg reports. "The bank has looked at communications between the employees and investors to determine whether such marketing practices were normal salesmanship or if they crossed a line, said the person, who asked not to be named because the matter is private.”
The End Of The Luxury Housing Boom: US Treasury Launches Crack Down On Secret Buyers Of Luxury Real EstateSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 01/13/2016 13:49 -0400
“We are seeking to understand the risk that corrupt foreign officials, or transnational criminals, may be using premium U.S. real estate to secretly invest millions in dirty money,” said FinCEN Director Jennifer Shasky Calvery. “Cash purchases present a more complex gap that we seek to address. These GTOs will produce valuable data that will assist law enforcement and inform our broader efforts to combat money laundering in the real estate sector.”
As the towering forces that are prevailing against failing global economic architecture and the pit of debt beneath that structure, as laid out below, it is clear that the 'Epocalypse' - encompassing the roots "economic, epoch, collapse" and "apocalypse" - is here, and it is everywhere. The Great Collapse has already begun. What follows are the megatrends that will increasingly gang up in the first part of 2016 to stomp the deeply flawed global economy down into its own hole of debt.
While the President will do his best to put a positive spin on the current economic environment, and the success of his policies, when he gives his “State of the Union” address, it would be worth remembering whom he is actually addressing. It is also worth considering that much of this is likely the reason that Donald Trump is surging in Conservative polling. As with all things – it is the lens from which you view the world that defines what you see. For Wall Street, things could not be better. For Main Street, most everything could be better. The President has a lot of “convincing” to do if he expects to change voter’s attitudes between now and the 2016 Presidential election.
"It’s no secret that Alberta’s economy is closely linked to the peaks and craters of oil prices—nominal GDP (not adjusted for inflation) swings in tandem with crude prices. It’s why Fort McMurray is like a wounded beast these days. MacKay’s neighbour got laid off this fall. “I watched the bank come and take his truck,” he recalls—it was that or not feed the kids."
Look out Stefan Ingves, the 2 and 20 crowd smells blood: "The market seems eager to challenge the Riksbank and there are rumors that many foreign hedge funds are long kronor and see a weakening of the krona after a possible intervention as a good buying opportunity.”
Derivatives like credit default swaps turned a mere bubble in the US housing market into a global financial catastrophe...
- China stocks tank, triggers circuit breaker (Reuters)
- Stocks Slump Across Europe and Asia Following Shanghai's 7% Crash (BBG)
- China Halts Stock Trading After 7% Rout Triggers Circuit Breaker (BBG)
- Iran says Riyadh thrives on tension after relations cut (Reuters)
- Saudis and Bahrain Face Off With Iran in Worst Clash Since 1980s (BBG)
- Syrian rebel group backs Saudi move to cut ties with Iran (Reuters)
As we move into winter, darkness has fallen up on us. Oil, ca. 65% of the nation’s economy, will not see the required $70 barrel anytime soon. American innovation, once again, turns a scarce resource into an abundant commodity. Despite optimistic Norwegian media articles, the potential for $20 per barrel looms. Production overwhelms demand while inventories rise to record highs. Although, still considered the best place to live, the cracks, in the oil based economy, are forming.
The last two years rents have been rising primarily due to supply and demand issues.
My overriding theme and the central drama for the coming year is that unexpected events can take on greater importance as the Federal Reserve ends its near-decade-long Zero Interest Rate Policy. Consensus premises and forecasts will likely fall flat, in a rather spectacular manner. The low-conviction and directionless market that we saw in 2015 could become a no-conviction and very-much-directed market (i.e. one that's directed lower) in 2016. There will be no peace on earth in 2016, and our markets could lose a cushion of protection as valuations contract. (Just as "malinvestment" represented a key theme this year, we expect a compression of price-to-earnings ratios to serve as a big market driver in 2016.) In other words, we don't think 2016 will be fun.
The last trading week of 2015 begins on a historic precipice for stocks: as reported over the weekend, the U.S. stock market has not been lower for any year ending in a “5? since 1875. That streak is now in jeopardy, because following Thursday's shortened holiday session which ended with an abrupt selloff, the overnight session has seen continued weakness across global assets in everything from Chinese stocks which tumbled the most since November 27, to commodities (WTI is down 2.5%) to European stocks (Stoxx 600 -0.4%), to US equity futures down 0.4% on what appears to be an overdue dose of Santa Rally buyers' remorse.