Monetary Policy

Emerging Market Mayhem: Gross Warns Of "Debacle" As Currencies, Bonds Collapse

Things are getting downright scary in emerging markets as a "triple unwind" in credit, Chinese leverage, and loose US monetary policy wreaks havoc across the space. Between a prolonged slump in commodity prices and a structural shift towards weaker global trade, the situation could worsen materially going forward.

Analysts Give Up On "Man-Made" China Data: It's "A Fantasy" That "No One Believes"

The veracity of China's economic data has long been the subject of debate and when FT called out the country’s National Bureau of Statistics for employing what we called "deficient deflator math" the NBS responded, saying the data reflected the "real situation." Now, virtually no one believes Beijing, with some analysts simply dismissing the "official" figures out of hand. 

Is This Country Latin America's Next "Argentina"

Today, following another spike in negative news, it appears that the credit markets have finally woken up, and a quick look at Brazil's CDS shows that following today's spike to 314bps, the country's implied default risk is back to levels last seen in April of 2009! We expect more credit market participants to notice the depressionary developments in brazil, and as the country's CDS continue to blow out, many will start asking themselves: is Brazil the next Argentina?

Futures Flat, China Slides Again, Oil Tumbles Near 2015 Lows

It has been more of the same in the latest quiet overnight session where many await tomorrow's NFP data for much needed guidance, and where Chinese markets opened weaker, rose during the day, then went through a mini rollercoaster, then sold off in the afternoon.  The Shanghai Composite and HS China Enterprises indices finished down .9% and .3%, respectively. Trading volume continued to be very subdued, running at half the thirty day average as some 20 million "investors" have pulled out of the market to be replaced with HFTs such as Virtu.  But while stock action has been muted, the story of the night so far is oil and the energy complex broke out of a tight overnight range early in the European session to continue yesterday's downward trend, seeing WTI Sep'15 futures fall below the USD 45.00 handle after yesterday's DoE crude oil inventories saw US crude output rise by 0.552%. As of this moment oil was trading at $44.72, just pennies above the low print of 2015.

Scotiabank Warns "The Fed Is Cornered And There Are Visible Market Stresses Everywhere"

The Fed’s zero interest rate policy has provided a subsidy to investors for the past 7 years.  The lure of easy profits from cheap money was wildly attractive and readily accepted by investors. The Fed “put” gave investors great confidence that they could outperform their exceptionally low cost of capital.  These implicit promises by central banks encouraged trillions of dollars into ‘carry trades’ and various forms of market speculation. Complacent investors maintain these trades, despite the Fed’s warning of a looming reduction in the subsidy, and despite a balance sheet expected to shrink in 2016.  It has been a risk-chasing ‘game of chicken’ that is coming to an end.  Changing conditions have skewed risk/reward to the downside.  This is particularly true because financial assets prices are exceptionally expensive...There are warning signs and visible market stresses beyond those mentioned yesterday.

Ransquawk BoE 'Super Thursday' preview


All surveyed analysts expect the Bank of England to keep monetary policy unchanged, with the bank rate at 0.5% and the Asset Purchase Facility at GBP 375bln

Focus expected to instead by on minutes and Quarterly Inflation Report (QIR) release with minutes expected to show a 7-2 vote split on keeping rates on hold

QIR will be analysed to see if it compares or contrasts to recent hawkish BoE rhetoric

Futures Rebound On Ongoing Dollar Strength; Commodities Rise, China Slides, Greek Banks Continue Plunging

In many ways the overnight session has been a mirror image of yesterday, with the dollar accelerating its Lockhart-commentary driven rise, which curiously has pushed ES higher perhaps as a result of more USDJPY correlation algos being active and various other FX tracking pairs. Indeed, the weak yen is all that mattered in Japan, where the Nikkei 225 (+0.5%) rose amid JPY weakness, despite opening initially lower as index heavyweight Fast Retailing (-4.5%) reported a 2nd consecutive monthly decline in Uniqlo sales. Elsewhere in mirror images, China slid 1.7%, undoing about half of yesterday's 3.7% jump, and is now down for 4 of the past 5 days.

"You're Gonna Need a Bigger Boat" - Does Size Matter When It Comes To The Debt Markets

The reality might just be that the collective "we," and quite possibly sooner than we think, really will need a bigger boat. That is, as it pertains to the global debt markets, which have swollen past the $200 trillion mark this year rendering the great white featured in Jaws which can be equated with past debt markets as defenseless and small as a small, striped Nemo by comparison. The question for the ages will be whether size really does matter when it comes to the debt markets...

Fed Admits Economy Can't Function Without Bubbles

The Fed would have needed to hike rates by 800 bps in the wake of the dot-com collapse in order to prevent the housing bubble. That would have purged the system and gradually, the FOMC could have eased by around 300 bps over the next four years. That policy course would have prevented the speculative bubble that brought capital markets the world over to their knees in 2008. And why didn’t the Fed do this? Because "such a large increase in interest rates would have depressed output more than the Great Recession did." In other words, thanks to Alan Greenspan, the US economy cannot function under a normalized monetary policy regime.

The Fed's Circular Logic Exposed In 1 Simple Chart

Hope, quite simply, just isn’t close to enough for a real recovery. There is an undeniable element of troubling prevarication in the whole attempt to coax unearned optimism, as taken to the extreme it means that policymakers will never quite be honest about especially realistic downsides. That may even mean, in their zeal to “fool” consumers, they fool themselves on the circular logic.

Bubble Finance And A Tale Of Two Spheres

We have argued that it is a perilous myth that central bankers these days control a general price level. They instead incentivize massive financial flows into securities markets and fashionable sectors. Over time, ramifications and consequences reach the profound. For one, excess liquidity promotes over/mal-investment. It’s only the scope and nature that remain in question. If major Bubble flows inundate new technology investment, the resulting surge in the supply of high-margin products engenders disinflationary pressures elsewhere. Policy responses to perceived heightened “deflation” risks then only work to exacerbate Bubbles, mounting imbalances and structural fragilities. This was a critical facet of “Roaring Twenties” analysis that was lost in time.

Gold And The Grave Dancers

Back in the 1960s, Alan Greenspan wrote a well-known essay that to this day is an essential read for anyone who wants to understand the present-day monetary and economic system (which is a kind of “fascism lite” type of statism, masquerading as capitalism) and especially the almost visceral hate etatistes harbor toward gold. Greenspan’s essay is entitled “Gold and Economic Freedom”, and as the title already suggests, the two are intimately connected.

"Asia Crisis, Tech Bubble Burst, Lehman"... And Today

Note that the classic sign of crisis and capital flight, higher interest rates, falling currency, and falling bank stocks are now visible in Brazil (and elsewhere). Indeed, the correlation between Brazilian bond yields and Brazilian financials/BRL turned sharply negative during each of the past 3 systemic crises (Asia ‘98, Tech ‘02 & Lehman ’08) and is doing so again today.