"This is another firm that, while I wouldn’t say they were fine a week ago, they didn’t look like they were headed to collapse, and a week later they’re dead. It was messier than optimal. Is it systemic or not? Fingers crossed, we hope not."
The Lira - officially the world's most volatile currency - has lost 11% of its value since the start of 2017 (down 8 of the last 9 days against the USD). In fact, the lira headed for its biggest five-day loss since Lehman (Oct 2008) after a pledge by Turkey’s central bank to support the currency failed to convince investors.
It's official. As previewed earlier this morning, when we reported that according to media reports, Sullivan & Cromwell lawyer Jay Clayton, a long-time favorite of Wall Street and especially Goldman Sachs, has been nominated to lead the Securities and Exchange Commission.
While mortgage applications tumbled across the two-week holiday period - even seasonally-adjusted - it was the complete collapse in the refinancings that is most notable. Down over 60% since August, the refi index crashed over 22% over the xmas/new year period to its lowest since the post-Lehman collapse in Oct 2008.
Donald Trump is preparing to appoint another Wall Street proxy to the top Wall Street regulation, supervision and enforcement post. According to the WSJ, Wall Street M&A and IPO lawyer, Jay Clayton, is Trump's leading candidate to become chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission and could be announced as the nominee as soon as Wednesday.
"We’ve been in a decline for years. Our national debt has reached monstrous proportions. Even if Trump is able to pull off a miracle and turn things around, there will have to be drastic cuts for this to happen. Painful ones. People will suffer."
In spite of being exposed in what is either a self-exculpating lie (the claim that bubbles can only be seen after they burst) or a sign of gross incompetence (the failure to see two of the largest financial bubbles in history), no Fed official has ever been asked to explain or rationalize the Fed’s contradictory positions on bubbles.
"The level of disrespect I see for police now, I've never seen it like this in 28 years. The willingness of the bad guy to engage a police officer, I've never, it's just different...Before, they didn't engage the police like they do now."
Open societies are in crisis, and various forms of closed societies – from fascist dictatorships to mafia states – are on the rise. Because elected leaders failed to meet voters’ legitimate expectations and aspirations, electorates have become disenchanted with the prevailing versions of democracy and capitalism. Open society needs defending...
US home prices have never been higher according to October's Case-Shiller data - surpassing July 2006's peak. The 5.1% YoY rise was slightly better than expected, but, with mortgage applications at Lehman lows and mortgage rates spiking to near 3-year highs since this data, the question is - what happens next?
The fundamental reason why we have grown to love (or learned to live with) central banks is that we cannot remember a time when they did not exist. So the argument is better the devil you know! But consider their track record...
"Markets don’t have a purpose any more - they just reflect whatever central planners want them to. Why wouldn’t it lead to the biggest collapse? My strategy doesn’t require that I’m right about the likelihood of that scenario. Logic dictates to me that it’s inevitable..."