After surging over 5% last week, gold and silver continue to move higher as concerns about the U.S. and global economy saw more sharp stock market falls and reduced expectations of the Fed increasing interest rates.
It would be hard to find better proof that the canary in the coalmine is singing and that his song is landing on ears deafened by 6 years of BTFD behavior than this.
The psychology dominating the minds of most institutional investors over the past few years has been that things were slowly getting back to normal. This has weighed on institutional demand for gold in a big way, and been a meaningful factor in the bear market (manipulation aside). The problem now is that this assumption is quickly being called into question, and if this psychological shift gathers pace, the shift back into gold could be very meaningful.
Don’t look now, but the infamous "Alt-As" are making a comeback thanks to “big money managers including Neuberger Berman, Pacific Investment Management Co. and an affiliate of Blackstone Group LP [who] are lobbying lenders to make more of these “liar’ loans—or even buying loan-origination companies to control more of the supply themselves,” WSJ reports.
"There is some truth to the phrase that the stock market has predicted nine of the last five recessions... but that is a much better track record than the consensus of economists. Every time the financial markets get volatile and messy like this it deserves attention because the markets are trying to tell us that there is a severe issue out there."
As we said two days ago when looking at the paltry recoveries on their total debt that bankrupt energy debtors are generating in liquidation and bankruptcy asset sales, "the energy bankruptcy party is only just starting." And sure enough, overnight we learned that another company is preparing to throw in the towel following a Reuters report that SandRidge Energy - a shale oil and gas producer in the Mid-Continent region of the U.S. - is exploring debt restructuring options, "as the heavily indebted U.S. oil and gas exploration and production company struggles with the fallout from plunging energy prices."
- Oil Drops as Saudis to Maintain Spending, China Diesel Use Falls (BBG)
- Saudi Arabia is able to withstand low prices says Saudi Aramco Chairman (WSJ)
- Recession Warnings May Not Come to Pass (WSJ)... or they May
- Stocks moving in tandem are squeezing short sellers (FT)... as first noted here in 2013
- Problems Found at Theranos Lab (WSJ)
- New York rebounds after blizzard, Washington shuts down government (Reuters)
- China business confidence, recruitment hit record lows in January - SMI survey (Reuters)
After the biggest two-day surge in oil in seven years, early in the overnight session both Brent and WTI continued their run for a third day, entering a bull market, 20% up from recent lows hit just last week (still 15% down on the year) when Saudi Arabia spoiled the momentum party after the world’s biggest crude exporter said it’s keeping up investments in energy projects while diesel consumption in China dropped for a fourth consecutive month, signaling an industrial slowdown. And thanks to the near record correlation between equities and oil, global stocks and US equity index futures initially rose only to slide following the Saudi comments.
It's been a roller coaster year for China's legions of semi-literate day traders who have seen the heights of feast and the depths of famine with Chinese equities over the past 12 months. Now, in the wake of more volatility, many Chinese retail investors are throwing in the towel.
Derivatives like credit default swaps turned a mere bubble in the US housing market into a global financial catastrophe...
If you are an institutional investor and you bought Novo Banco bonds, you just had a bad morning...
“If you’re pushing for lower management fees to save minimal basis points on a fund where you are unhappy with performance, as a fiduciary, you have to decide whether you want to keep that fund at all.”
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"While funding continued to be available, such a large negative basis indicates potential market dislocations. And this may call into question how smoothly US dollar funding conditions will adjust in the event of an increase in US onshore interest rates. Similar pricing anomalies have also emerged in interest rate swap markets recently, raising related concerns."
"Deteriorating market breadth and herding into an ever-narrower number of stocks is classic market top behavior. Currently, there are many other warning signs that are also being ignored. The merger mania, the stock buyback frenzy, the year-over-year declines in corporate sales and falling earnings for the entire S&P 500 index, the plunges this year in the high-yield and leveraged loan markets, the topping and rolling over of the massive (record) level of stock margin debt... and I could go on."