It is only a matter of time until Venezuela can no longer finance its imports and social and political chaos of unprecedented proportions will afflict the country. The fallout will also affect Venezuela’s neighboring countries.
One day after the biggest drop in US stocks in two months, global stocks struggled as they tried to close out 2016 on a positive note. The dollar dropped the most in two weeks, sliding alongside bond yields, while oil retreated from its highest close in 17 months. European stocks slid from a 2016 peak on renewed concerns about Italian banks.
European stocks were little changed and oil fell as investors assessed declining prospects for an OPEC deal and risks from Italy’s referendum. Asian stocks declined, while S&P futures pointed to a fractionally higher open, erasing 3 points from yesterday's drop.
The key economic releases this week are consumer confidence on Tuesday, ISM manufacturing on Thursday, and the employment report on Friday. There are a few scheduled speaking engagements from Fed officials this week. The Beige Book for the December FOMC period will be released on Wednesday.
European shares dipped and U.S. equity-index futures (-0.3%) pointed to a lower open as traders questioned the stability of the Italian banking sector ahead of next weekend's referendum as well as the longevity of the Trumpflation rally, pressuring the dollar. "It's a bit of a pull back in the dollar," said Societe Generale strategist Alvin Tan. "The fall in oil is pushing back U.S. bond yields and that is leading the consolidation in the dollar.. there is more scepticism about an (OPEC) output cut now."
European, Asian stocks fell while S&P futures rebounded as investors assessed a mixed batch of earnings reports while the dollar strengthened to 9 month highs versus most of peers on rising confidence that the Fed will raise rates this year, pushing global bond yields higher.
Looking at the week ahead, the US election enters the home stretch and politics will likely dominate the headlines, especially the closer races in Congress. Despite data being overshadowed by politics, there are some key US releases coming up, with the first estimate of Q3 GDP, the employment cost index and durable goods the main focus.
Global stocks jumped around the globe, with Europe's Stoxx 600 and US equity futures rising more than 0.5% on a surge in merger announcements over the weekend including the $85 billion mega takeout of AT&T for Time Warner, the $6.4 billion acquisition of B/E Aerospace by Rockwell Collins, the $2.7 billion deal targeting Genworth by China Oceanwide and the just announced $4 billion purchase of Scotttrade by Ameritrade.
With a flurry of political risk events over the coming months, and a new global focus on fiscal policy, Draghi needs to reassure market players that the ECB has more ammunition as well as laying to rest the taper talk that spooked bond markets this month.
After yesterday's "Hillary rally" in the US, the overnight's session has seen more risk-on sentiment as European stocks advanced, ignoring weakness in Asia as investors followed every twist of shares of beleaguered lender Deutsche Bank, whose CEO last night assured Bill readers that the bank is not seeking a bailout, which however was contradicted by a Zeit article this morning reporting that Germany may seek as much as s 25% "bailout" stake in a worst case scenario.
A rally in global risk that started during last night's first presidential debate on the market's take that Hillary came out on top fizzled, following news that the DOJ is assessing how big a criminal fine it can extract from Volkswagen (-3.8%) over emissions-cheating "without putting the German carmaker out of business", while Iran's oil minister Zanganeh told reporters Iran is ununwilling to freeze output at current levels. Deutsche Bank dropped to a new all time low while its default risk hit fresh record highs.
The week ahead is striking in the sheer number of central bank speakers, but with the Fed on hold until December and the BoJ’s new framework now revealed, focus turns squarely from central banks to US politics. The first US presidential debate at the start of the week will be a key focus.
While today's biggest event for both markets and politics will be tonight's highly anticipated first presidential debate between Trump and Hillary, markets are waking up to some early turmoil in both Asia and Europe, with declines in banks and energy producers dragging down stock-markets around the world, pushing investors to once again seek the safety of government bonds and the yen.
Alan Greenspan is shamelessly trying to get ahead of what he seems to be calling the mob, the crazies who at some point will start digging into what he actually did at the Fed rather than simply accepting the myths that he still manages to live by.