Last Thursday's comments from NATO's Rasmussen on Russian incursions into Ukraine sent stocks reeling... and then the pre-announced end of Russia's military drill sent stocks soaring. All the while Treasuries oscillated in a relatively tight range, unmoved by equity's manic moves. Today, as Russian convoys sit 'aggressively' at the border, Israel plans new fight with Gaza as truce ends, and Iraq is escalating, stocks are fading back to last week's NATO levels (as the dollar, long-end bonds, and gold are all sliding).
- Gunshots, tear gas in riots over shooting of black Missouri teen (Reuters)
- Russia sends big aid convoy to Ukraine, West sounds warnings (Reuters)
- Maliki Bid to Block Successor Escalates Crisis in Iraq (BBG)
- Poor German data pushes euro toward 9-month lows against dollar (Reuters)
- Derivatives Reincarnate Boosting Debt Wagers in New Era (BBG)
- Israel Says No Gaza Talks Progress as Hamas Warns on Truce (BBG)
- Traders brace for research crackdown as easy money dries up (Reuters)
- U.S. Bank Profits Near Record Levels (WSJ)
- Unproven Ebola Drugs Are Ethical to Use in Outbreak: WHO (BBG)
- Caesars’ CEO Loveman Says No Qualified Bidders for Revel (BBG)
If the global equity "markets" were in need of a sharp "horrible news is great news" boost overnight, it came courtesy of Germany's ZEW investor confidence survey, which printed at a stunning 8.6, a plunge from the 27.1 in July and far below the 17.0 expected - the lowest print since December 2012 -largely suggesting that a European triple-dip is all but assured. And if that wasn't enough, strong language from John Kerry, assured to fan the flames of geopolitical instability, came hours ago when the US SecState said even more Russian sanctions may be coming. And just to make sure the NY Fed trading desk has to come up with a new narrative is the latest development in the Russian "humanitarian convoy" saga, which as we reported last night, has departed Russia but which Ukraine is now refusing to allow into its country. All in all, it's is setting up to be another super bullish day in the rigged markets for which all that matters is... Tuesday.
"You give me this office, and in turn, my fears, doubts, insecurities, foibles, need for sleep, family life, vacations, leisure is gone. I am giving myself to you. The American people should have no patience for whatever is going through your head because you have a job to do. You don't make that decision unless you are prepared to make that sacrifice, that tradeoff. Those who make mistakes in the president's office make them because they haven't fully thought through the dimensions of that choice."
- Barack Hussein Obama
Despite the early volumeless lift, helped by USDJPY, it appears stock investors began to get the hint that the US economy (Stan Fischer), Iraq (coup), Ukraine (Russian will do it anyway), and Israel are not all fixed. Bonds rallied modestly early on ignoring the equity bounce and then as Europe closed (and a few Ukraine and Iraq headlines of reality hit), stocks leaked back off their highs. Treasuries end the day unchanged (5Y -1bps), Silver popped 0.75% back above $20, copper and oil modestly higher and gold down small to $1310. FX markets appeared quiet (USD ended practically unchanged) but EUR weakness was offset by CAD and SEK strength. S&P futures volume was 40% below average.
... Who America and Her Close Allies SUPPORT (the Terrorists, That Is) ...
He also warned that all countries would have to face up to mounting debt levels and said that central bank’s ultra loose monetary policies were not the answer. King echoed the IMF’s Lagarde recent declaration that the world needs a “global economic reset”.
- Maliki digs in as U.S. pushes for new Iraq government (Reuters)
- Ukraine's forces say close to taking rebel-held Donetsk (Reuters)
- Anger Over Michael Brown Shooting Leads to Looting (WSJ)
- German Economy Backbone Bending From Lost Russia Sales (BBG)
- Kinder Morgan to Consolidate Empire (WSJ)
- Early Failure to Detect Gaza Tunnel Network Triggers Recriminations in Israel (WSJ)
- You’ll never guess how much BuzzFeed raised from Horowitz (FT)
- The dumb money is now chasing Chinese oligarchs: Norway’s Wealth Fund Buys $576 Million of Mayfair Area (BBG)
- Clinical trial to start soon on GSK Ebola vaccine (Reuters)
- No drone skeet shooting any time soon (WSJ)
Since there is nothing on today's data docket, it will be all about, you guessed it, geopolitical risks, where "consensus" is best summarized by these two Bloomberg headlines:
- Stay USD Long as Geopolitical Risks Loom
- USD is mixed and world stock markets rise as concerns over geopolitical risks ease
That pretty much covers it, although in addition to the Ukraine civil war one can now add an Iraq coup to the list of geopolitical fiascoes instigated by US foreign policy.
A month ago we explained that 11.7% of the world's population was at war and mapped out the key global geopolitical hotspots. However, while Israel, Palestine, Ukraine, and Iraq monopolize the headlines nowadays, they are not the only groups currently at war. Serious armed conflicts are happening all over the world - we just don't hear about them. Here's our complete list of the wars happening right now...
One can’t help when looking at all the geopolitical as well as threats of non-containment of the deadly Ebola virus and wonder: Who’s in control here? Here’s a hint – it’s not the people lining up to give the message via oratory salvos. One thing has now been shown in vivid detail: The more messaging put out along these same lines will only make it abundantly clear to any and all opposition that those in charge haven’t a clue.
"The U.S. Administration in particular has passionately thrown off the mantle of leadership and replaced it with a combination of naïve denial and incoherent mumbling... if the world perceives a superpower as strong, reliable and willing to take action to back its promises, that perception can and does preserve stability, and the opposite can encourage mischief and danger. The world is currently experiencing a surfeit of the latter. There is no way to tell how deep and consequential the danger, or the surprising ways and places in which this interconnected problem will be resolved. The range of potential outcomes, however, is negative to very bad."
Gold Breaks Out As Tensions In Middle East, With Russia Intensify - Technicals and Fundamentals PositiveSubmitted by GoldCore on 08/08/2014 16:06 -0500
Gold is nearly 2% higher this week and its technical position has further improved (see key charts). On Wednesday, gold broke out of bullish descending wedge chart pattern that has formed in recent months. Another buy signal for gold came when gold rose above the 20 EMA and 50 EMA (exponential moving averages). Also positive is the fact that the price momentum oscillator (PMO) has turned up, indicating that a positive momentum shift has occurred.
In Which We Read That The "Proper Role Of A Central Bank Is To Counteract Market Turbulence Before It Happens"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 08/08/2014 13:03 -0500
Want to read a really terrifying article? Take a look at this August 6th Op-Ed piece in the FT by Draghi’s former colleague, Lorenzo Bini Smaghi: “The ECB Must Move to Counteract Market Turbulence”. Are you kidding me? This is what we have come to … that the proper role of a central bank is to counteract “market turbulence” before it happens? I’d laugh, but then I remember that Yellen means exactly the same thing when she refers to “macroprudential policy”, and I want to cry.