• Gold Standard I...
    07/07/2015 - 02:32
    In hyperinflation, the currency's purchasing power collapses. Many Fed critics have predicted this will come soon, though it hasn't happened yet. However all is not well with the dollar.

Kraft

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The Last Rebels: 25 Things We Did As Kids That Would Get Someone Arrested Today





All of this babying creates incompetent, fearful adults. Our children have been enveloped in this softly padded culture of fear, and it’s creating a society of people who are fearful, out of shape, overly cautious, and painfully politically correct. They are incredibly incompetent when they go out on their own because they’ve never actually done anything on their own. Raise your hand if you survived a childhood in the 60s, 70s, and 80s that included one or more of the following, frowned-upon activities...

 
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Futures Flat On Minutes Day; Chinese Bubble Spills Into Hong Kong; Biggest Energy M&A Deal In Over A Decade





While US equity futures are largely unchanged, if only ahead of the now daily pre-open market-wide ramp, things in Asia have continued on their bubbly flurry, where China's Shanghai Composite briefly rose above 4000 for the first time since 2008, but it was the surge in the Hong Kong stock market that showed the Chinese bubble is finally spilling over, in the form of a blistering rally on the Hang Seng which rose nearly 4% on immense volume which at 250 billion Hong Kong dollars ($32 billion) was three times the average daily volume over the past year and nearly 20% more than the previous record volume day in October 2007, at the height of the pre-financial crisis bubble.

 
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Warren Buffett Is Everything That's Wrong With America





Warren Buffett is revered all over the place, but in reality, he’s the schoolbook example of everything that’s wrong with America. That whole money before and over anything else (including people’s health and well-being) mentality. It makes people stupid, and it makes for stupid people. And sick ones, too. This Tragedy of the Commons abuse is so ingrained in the economy that it’s hard to see how it can be changed. And that does not bode well for anyone except the Warren Buffetts profiteering from it.

 
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Frontrunning: April 2





  • Samaras Says He’d Join Alliance to Keep Greece in Euro (BBG)
  • Tensions with Warren camp could loom over Clinton campaign (Reuters)
  • Ackman Report on Herbalife in China Figures in Probe (WSJ)
  • Al Shabaab storms Kenyan university, 14 reported killed (Reuters)
  • Iraq’s Four-Mile Line of Supertankers Fuels Shipping-Rates Surge (BBG)
  • Menendez's fate could sharpen Republicans' edge in Senate (Reuters)
  • IRS Chief Chides Ted Cruz Over 'Abolish the IRS' Mantra (BBG)
  • Yemen Houthi fighters backed by tanks reach central Aden (Reuters)
 
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Frontrunning: March 31





  • Iran, powers push for nuclear deal as clock ticks toward deadline (Reuters)
  • How DIY Bond Traders Displaced Wall Street’s Hot Shots (BBG)
  • MillerCoors Caught in a Downdraft (WSJ)
  • Saudi-led strikes again hit Yemen overnight (Reuters)
  • Even With Free Money, Merkel Still Reluctant to Spend (BBG)
  • Britain Uses Tax Breaks to Lure Digital-Game Developers (WSJ)
  • China to Insure Deposits in Move Toward Scrapping Rate Curbs (BBG)
  • As China Expands Its Navy, the U.S. Grows Wary (WSJ)
 
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Thank You, Fed - Warren And Jorge Are Thrilled By Another Play Day In The Casino





So what has transpired is another day and another play in the casino. This ketchup and mac merger could not be more emblematic of how the Fed’s destruction of honest financial markets has fatally deformed American capitalism. Warren and Jorge are understandably singing Janet’s praise. Everyone else should be getting out the torches and pitchforks.

 
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Frontrunning: March 26





  • Saudi Arabia, allies launch air strikes in Yemen against Houthi fighters (Reuters)
  • Pilot on Crashed Jet Was Locked Out of Cockpit, NY Times Says (BBG)
  • Why Bombing This Tiny Oil Producer Is Roiling the Energy Market (BBG)
  • U.S.-led coalition, Iraqis pound Islamic State in Tikrit (Reuters)
  • Munger Says Prepare for Harder World as Buying Power Slides (BBG),Mocks Greek ‘Idiotic Idea’ You Can Vote Yourself Rich (BBG)
  • The Central Banker Who Saved the Russian Economy From the Abyss (BBG)
  • Bank of Canada says foreign buyers complicate housing market (Reuters)
  • Investors Scoop Up Companies’ Bonds (WSJ)
  • Espirito Santo Probe Turns Mariana Mortagua Into Portuguese Star (BBG)
 
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Frontrunning: March 25





  • ECB Tells Greek Banks Not to Boost Exposure to Athens Government’s Debt (WSJ)
  • Search teams probe wreckage of jet in French Alps (Reuters)
  • Flight Recorders Offer Best Hope of Explaining Jet’s Fatal Drop (BBG)
  • Yemen Houthi militia sweeps toward Aden in threat to president (Reuters)
  • In Nigeria, Oil Price’s Slide Deters Theft (WSJ)
  • Saudi Arabia building up military near Yemen border (Reuters)
  • Quant Who Shook the Financial World Tries More Humble Approach (BBG)
  • Executive Pensions Are Swelling at Top Companies (WSJ)
 
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Without Buyback Back Up, Futures Fail To Find Fizzle





After three days of unexpected market weakness without an apparent cause, especially since after 7 years of conditioning, the algos have been habituated to buy on both good and bad news, overnight futures are getting weary, and futures are barely up, at least before this morning's transitory FX-driven stop hunt higher. Whether this is due to the previously noted "blackout period" for stock buybacks which started a few days ago and continues until the first week of May is unclear, but should the recent "dramatic" stock weakness persist, expect Bullard to once again flip flop and suggesting it is clearly time to hike rates, as long as the S&P does not drop more than 5%. In that case, QE4 is clearly warranted.

 
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Thousands Of Layoffs Coming After Buffett Merges Heinz With Kraft, Creating 5th Largest Food Company In The World





Another day, another mega-M&A deal taking advantage of abnormally low bond rates, this time however not involving biotechs or a specialty pharma seeking to purchase a debt-free balance sheet, but one involving the Oracle of Omaha himself, and his Heinz investment, which will merge with Kraft Foods whose market cap was over $40 billion this morning on the news of the merger, and create the third largest food and beverage company in the US, and 5th largest in  the world.  And while the resulting company will certainly be a food giant, here is the rationale behind the deal and the punchline for American workers: "significant synergy opportunities." Translation: thousands of layoffs imminent.

 
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Frontrunning: March 20





  • Clinton Charity Tapped Foreign Friends (WSJ)
  • Dollar Set for Worst Week Since ’13; S&P Futures Rise (BBG)
  • Shale Producers Have Found Another Lifeline: Shareholders (BBG)
  • BOJ Kuroda says no sign of 'currency war' brewing in world (Reuters)
  • Fed Is Pushing and Pulling on Rates Riddle (WSJ
  • Brent oil falls towards $54 on OPEC output, Iran (Reuters)
  • Iran Talks Stall Over Ending of Sanctions (WSJ)
 
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Frontrunning: March 18





  • Hilsenrath: Fed to Markets: No More Promises (WSJ)
  • Fed set to ditch 'patient' rate vow as it eyes U.S., world growth (Reuters)
  • Fannie, Freddie could need another bailout (Reuters)
  • Alibaba Stock-Sale Lockup Is Ending (WSJ)
  • Netanyahu Sweeps Aside Herzog’s Challenge to Win Israel Vote (BBG)
  • Oil Bonds Lose Investors $7 Billion in 10 Days (BBG)
  • There’s a mysterious $1.1 trillion in spending cuts in the House GOP’s budget (WaPo)
  • ECB's Celebration of Its New $1.4 Billion Tower Is Spoiled by Protesters (BBG)
 
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Frontrunning: February 13





  • Greece will do 'whatever it can' to reach deal with EU (Reuters)
  • ECB Urges Greek Political Deal as Emergency Cash Is Tight (BBG)
  • Fighting rages in run-up to Ukraine ceasefire (Reuters)
  • Eurozone GDP Picks Up, Thanks to Germany (WSJ)
  • Two J. P. Morgan Executives Connected to Asia Hiring Probe Pushed Out (WSJ)
  • Putin's High Tolerance for Pain and Europe's Reluctance to Inflict It (BBG)
  • Indigestion Hits Top U.S. Food Firms (WSJ)
  • Alibaba's Jack Ma seeks to reassure employees over U.S. lawsuits (Reuters)
 
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Frontrunning: January 12





  • Earnings Pessimism Jumps as Oil Threatens S&P 500 Growth (BBG)
  • It’s Amateur Hour in the Booming Chinese Stock Market (BBG)
  • France mobilizes 10,000 troops at home after Paris shootings (Reuters)
  • European Stocks Gain With S&P 500 Futures While Oil Drops (BBG)
  • Nasdaq Looks to Operate Dark Pools for Banks (WSJ)
  • This Guy Called Bonds in ’14. You Listening This Time? (BBG)
  • Paris attacks boost support for Dutch anti-Islam populist Wilders (Reuters)
  • OPEC price war in Asia intensifies as oil falls below $50 (Reuters)
 
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The Yellow Cab Bubble Pops: Taxi Medallion Prices Tumble 17% From Last Year's Record Highs





A little over a year ago, we presented a "Yellow" asset, which was "the best performer of the past year." It wasn't gold: it was yellow cab medallions.  As we wrote then, "the best returning asset class traded in the NY Metro area is yellow but doesn't change hands on Wall Street.... over the last 12 months New York City taxi medallions have risen 49% in price, besting the relatively humdrum returns of the S&P 500 (up 21%), the NASDAQ (22%) and the Dow (18%).  Medallions – essentially the right to operate a for-hail taxi in New York City – now trade for as much as $1.3 million, an all-time record."  In retrospect it was also the perfect time to cash out on the "yellow" euphoria. According to the NYT, "the average price of an individual New York City taxi medallion fell to $872,000 in October, down 17 percent from a peak reached in the spring of 2013, according to an analysis of sales data. Previous figures published by the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission — showing flat prices — appear to have been incorrect, and the commission removed them from its website after an inquiry from The New York Times."

 
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