A Japanese citizens’ judicial committee has overruled government prosecutors and forced them to bring three former executives of the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) to trial on charges of criminal negligence for their inability to prevent the 2011 nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
"It's all noise," squeaks Laszlo Birinyi, deflecting concerns about revenues, earnings, Europe, China, commodities, and rates as he unleashes his latest extrapolation. "If we continue to grow at 11bps per day, the S&P will be at 3,200 within 2 years," he warbles as he hopes his ruler - which missed its 2013 projection by 1100 points - is forecasting better this time.
The disconnect between economic underpinnings, market internals and "bullish" investor optimism leaves many investors/advisors "mentally conflicted." If they "sell" too soon, they might miss a further advance in the market. But if they wait too long, well, they have lived through that scenario previously. This week's reading list is a smattering of conflicting views about the markets and the economy.
Why are governments suddenly so keen to ban physical cash? The answer appears to be that the banks and government authorities are anticipating bail-ins, steeply negative interest rates and hefty fees on cash, and they want to close any opening regular depositors might have to escape these forms of officially sanctioned theft. The escape mechanism from bail-ins and fees on cash deposits is physical cash, and hence the sudden flurry of calls to eliminate cash as a relic of a bygone age — that is, an age when commoners had some way to safeguard their money from bail-ins and bankers’ control.
Everything... EVERYTHING... rests on one ephemeral thing – the market’s confidence in the power of Central Banks to ensure a good outcome no matter what. Anybody paying attention to the lesson should not just be thinking about what might happen when that fragile confidence evaporates, but taking steps to ensure they don’t get caught out when it does. The problem comes in leaving such precautions a day too long... Ask anybody who was considering selling their Chinese equities last Friday but didn’t...
If this is what is happening to a daisy now... good luck to the Olympic athletes in 5 years...
"They are going to be toast. It will be one of our first levels of shorting the moment we start to see cracks, because it’s ripe with retail, emotional investors."
What both Wall Street in general as well as the Federal Reserve has wrought is a market so adulterated, so anemic, and so mistrusted the euphemistic “money on the sidelines” has more in common with nursery rhymes than it does with anything reality based. There is no money on the sidelines. Nobody wants “in” to this market. Anyone with half a brain and a modicum of common sense wants out – and the outflow numbers show it still to be true.
How the intersection of Fed policy, the post-crisis regulatory regime, and illiquid markets turned ETFs into the new financial weapons of mass destruction.
"Moody’s, which in 2013 began using a lower rate than governments do to calculate future liabilities, has estimated that the 25 largest U.S. public pensions alone have $2 trillion less than they need", Bloomberg reports.
Just a little over a month after we learned that Jamie Dimon recently became a billionaire, Bloomberg reports that yet another TBTF CEO has joined the billionaire banker club and frankly, we’re surprised it took this long because after all, when you’re the CEO of the blood-sucking cephalopod that holds the political and financial fate of the world in its tentacles, it seems only right that you would have been a billionaire long before any other banker on the Street.
China’s central bank is officially in the business of financing leveraged stock buying and as Bloomberg reports, the country's state-run margin lender now has the capacity to pump the equivalent of five Greek bailouts into leveraged stock trades.
Hyperinflation in the U.S. is coming sometime in the next 20 years or so, and this isn't a cry from a Chicken Little, but a conclusion that the analysis strongly suggests. It is possible hyperinflation could happen during the next few years, but that seems unlikely since it would require a series of major crises and political blunders – events unprecedented in the history of the United States. If this led to a corruption of Constitutional rights in the midst of an exaltation of the Executive Branch that resulted in loss of the rule of law, hyperinflation might result. It is much more probable that hyperinflation will be preceded by a long slow decline that will include a protracted period of high inflation, and that the crash of the dollar and hyperinflation will be the final tumble off a looming, steep cliff.
On Wednesday, Carl Icahn and Larry Fink engaged in an epic debate about the role ETFs play in perpetuating systemic risk. Icahn, taking a page from the Tyler Durden playbook, talks phantom liquidity before calling BlackRock "a dangerous company", and opining that Fink and Janet Yellen are "pushing the damn thing off a cliff."