Shortly after we reported the latest market-rigging scandal, in which ITG was busted for frontrunning sellside clients in its dark pool in what has been since dubbed a "trading experiment" (because it sounds better than criminal conspiracy to defraud clients), and which will cost the company a record for a private Wall Street firm $22 million settlement, we had one question for AQR's Cliff Asness yesterday morning: "Hi @Cimmerian999, is Hitesh Mittal the AQR employee who was formerly at ITG and is part of the SEC settlement?" We got no answer from the AQR head, but luckily Bloomberg noticed, and as it turns out the answer to our question was a resounding yes.
The ruling does not outlaw “bail-ins” per se. It simply ensures that guarantees given to bondholders cannot be retrospectively revoked. EU nations who have not yet ratified the BRRD have until the end of July to adopt the new EU bail-ins rules
The bear market in bullion is an artificial creation. This artificial, indeed fraudulent, increase in the supply of paper bullion contracts drives down the price in the futures market despite high demand for bullion in the physical market and constrained supply.
Some downward risk to the gold price remains due to the momentum of the recent severe correction in price. He points out that GoldCore had suggested on Bloomberg three years ago that a 50% correction in price was not unlikely at that time as is normal in long term bull markets.
The unwinding of the US dollar carry trade will be particularly severely felt where leverage is highest!
There are times when a loud cry of “The emperor has no clothes!” can be most copacetic. And so, let me point out something quite simple, yet very important. The old world order, to which we became accustomed over the course of the 1990s and the 2000s, its crises and its problems detailed in numerous authoritative publications on both sides of the Atlantic - it is no more. It is not out sick and it is not on vacation. It is deceased. It has passed on, gone to meet its maker, bought the farm, kicked the bucket and joined the crowd invisible. It is an ex-world order.
Less than a decade after a housing/derivatives bubble nearly wiped out the global financial system, a new and much bigger commodities/derivatives bubble is threatening to finish the job. So... the central banks will panic. Again. Countries that retain some control over their monetary systems will see their interest rates fall to zero and beyond, while those that don’t will be thrown into some kind of new age hyperinflationary depression. Not 2008 all over again; this is something much stranger.
Tehran, Beijing, Moscow, Islamabad, and New Delhi have been actively establishing interlocking security guarantees. They have been simultaneously calling the Atlanticist bluff when it comes to the endless drumbeat of attention given to the flimsy meme of Iran’s "nuclear weapons program." And a few days before the Vienna nuclear negotiations finally culminated in an agreement, all of this came together at a twin BRICS/SCO summit in Ufa, Russia -- a place you’ve undoubtedly never heard of and a meeting that got next to no attention in the U.S. And yet sooner or later, these developments will ensure that the War Party in Washington and assorted neocons (as well as neoliberalcons) already breathing hard over the Iran deal will sweat bullets as their narratives about how the world works crumble.
The manipulative smash on the gold price on Sunday night has once again led to a surge of buying of gold coins and bars across the globe. Both the Wall Street Journal and Reuters report on how bullion dealers are seeing a spike in demand for gold coins and bars in India and China and indeed Europe, Australia and the U.S.
Why are commodity prices, including oil prices, lagging? Ultimately, it comes back to the question, “Why isn’t the world economy making very many of the end products that use these commodities?” If workers were getting rich enough to buy new homes and cars, demand for these products would be raising the prices of commodities used to build and operate cars, including the price of oil. If governments were rich enough to build an increasing number of roads and more public housing, there would be demand for the commodities used to build roads and public housing. It looks to me as though we are heading into a deflationary depression, because prices of commodities are falling below the cost of extraction. We need rapidly rising wages and debt if commodity prices are to rise back to 2011 levels or higher. This isn’t happening.
It’s not too interesting to say that Donald Trump is a nationalist and aspiring despot who is manipulating bourgeois resentment, nativism, and ignorance to feed his power lust. It’s uninteresting because it is obviously true. It’s so true that stating it sounds more like an observation than a criticism. However, 'Trumpism' is an ideology that is very much present in American life, though hardly acknowledged. It lives mostly hidden in dark corners, and we don’t even have a name for it. You bump into it at neighborhood barbecues, at Thanksgiving dinner when Uncle Harry has the floor, at the hardware store when two old friends in line to checkout mutter about the state of the country. The ideology is a 21st century version of right fascism - one of the most politically successful ideological strains of 20th century politics. Though hardly anyone talks about it today, we really should.
Fifteen years after Vladimir Putin first walked into the Kremlin, Russia’s army is bigger, stronger, and better equipped than at any time since the end of the Cold War. Able to call on three quarters of a million frontline troops, The Telegraph reports, with more tanks than any other country on the planet, and the world’s third largest air force, Russia retains much of the brute force associated with a former superpower. But it has also rapidly modernised, spending millions on rearmament and retraining programmes aimed at professionalising the lumbering, conscript-reliant force it inherited from the Soviet Union. The latest effort, as Reuters reports, Putin has ordered the creation of a new reserve armed force as part of steps to improve training and military readiness at a time of international tensions with the West over Ukraine.
The last time these criteria were met... stocks plunged over 90% over the next 24 months.
One of the reasons we write is rooted in our deep fear of what might emerge after the current paradigm collapses. We have no doubt something very different is coming, we just desperately want that thing to be freedom, free markets and prosperity as opposed to the disaster that a $2 despot like Trump would bring. His ascension in the polls is very troubling, and makes us wonder whether the public will ultimately choose to rally behind some statist-demagogue wrapped in an American flag when things get bad enough, as opposed to something far more difficult: Liberty. We fear they may eventually choose someone like Donald Trump.