In what may be the biggest story of the year, if confirmed, Greek newspaper To Vima reports that Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin for 10 billion dollars in order to print drachmas. But the real shocker: on the night of the referendum, word came from Russia that Putin did not want to support Greece’s return to the drachma. After that, Tsipras had no choice left but to “surrender” to German Chancellor.
Earlier today one of Icahn's favorite energy names (you won't find him tweeting about this one much thought) Chesapeake Energy, the second-largest US natural gas producer, announced it too is now scrambling to conserve cash (in this case $240 million per year) by suspending its dividend payment.
- Gold claws back ground, European assets lose Greek tarnish (Reuters)
- Greece's Euro Exit Back on the Agenda Next Year, Economists Say (BBG)
- Greece submits bill needed to start rescue talks (Reuters)
- Wall Street Lenders Growing Impatient With U.S. Shale Revolution (BBG)
- Overtime Rules Send Bosses Scrambling (WSJ)
- As Markets Swing, Beijing Steadies Yuan (WSJ)
- Tennessee rampage suspect went to Qatar in 2014 (Reuters)
- Kathryn Dominguez to Be Nominated for Fed Governor (WSJ)
The nuclear industry in the United States has been at a standstill for several decades. After an extraordinary wave of construction in the 1960s and 1970s, the nuclear industry ground to a halt. Operating nuclear reactors for 80 years may be feasible, but wear and tear cannot only raise safety questions, but constant maintenance can make them economically unviable. Cracks can form in plants as they age, forcing the plant offline. The cost of repairs have already forced some power plants offline for good. The San Onofre plant in California, for example, was shut down by Southern California Edison after the bill to repair leaks ballooned. Duke Energy closed a reactor at its Crystal River power plant in Florida as repair costs got out of hand. Such incidents could be more frequent in the years ahead. But if the industry gets its way, some plants could operate well beyond their current 60-year licenses.
Today's action is so far an exact replica of Friday's zero-volume ES overnight levitation higher (even if Europe's derivatives market, the EUREX exchange, did break at the open for good measure leading to a delayed market open just to make sure nobody sells) with the "catalyst" today being the official Greek repayment to both the ECB and the IMF which will use up €6.8 billion of the €7.2 billion bridge loan the EU just handed over Athens so it can immediately repay its creditors. In other words, Greek creditors including the ECB, just repaid themselves once again. One thing which is not "one-time" or "non-recurring" is the total collapse in commodities, which after last night's precious metals flash crash has sent the Bloomberg commodity complex to a 13 year low.
Andy Brown, a top Shell official, said the Anglo-Dutch oil giant forecasts no quick rebound in the average global price of oil, but only a gradual recovery lasting five years. He attributed this sluggishness to a slowdown in China’s economy, leading a drop in demand for fuel, and the continuing oversupply of oil. “It will take several years [for oil prices to recover fully], but we do believe fundamentals will return,” Brown said. “Until such time, we, like other companies, will have to make sure we stay robust.”
If low oil pries are great for America "unequivocally," then the continued surge in Energy costs (+2.4% MoM in June) must be [fill in the blank]? PPI Final Demand rose 0.4% MoM - near the fatest pace in 3 years (beating expectations of a 0.2% rise) but fell 0.7% YoY. The huge gap between core and headline PPI continues to grow with PPI Ex Food and Energy rising 0.8% YoY, its first acceleration in 2015.
The dollar has been a stalwart of international trade over the majority of the last century. Around the time of the formation of the Eurozone, it reached its recent peak at 71.0% of official foreign exchange reserves. Since then, its composition of global reserves has more recently dropped to a more modest 62.9% in 2014. However, the dollar is slowly losing its status as the world’s undisputed reserve currency.
U.S. oil production has peaked... at least for now. That is the conclusion from a new government report that concludes that U.S. oil production is on the decline.
"Russia intends to support the revival of Greece's economy by broadening cooperation in the energy sector. Accordingly we are studying the possibility of organising direct deliveries of energy resources to Greece, starting shortly."
- Fed Chair Yellen To Speak As Global Tensions Rise (WSJ)
- Greek PM Tsipras seeks party backing after abrupt concessions (Reuters)
- France Hails Greek Aid Proposals as Germany Reserves Judgment (BBG)
- Greek PM says does not have mandate to exit eurozone (Reuters)
- France Intercedes on Greece’s Behalf to Try to Hold Eurozone Together (WSJ)
- Frozen Funds, Fleeing Tourists: Greek Startups Feel the Pinch (BBG)
- Doubts Simmer Despite China’s Gain (WSJ)
We previously questioned whether western sanctions imposed on Russia were being regularly breached by E.U. and Asian companies, noting that sanctions only work if all countries unite behind them. Now, only one year after being imposed, the sanctions are eroding as it seems that government and business policies are pulling in opposite directions. A U.S. State Dept. representative may have let the truth slip out recently when he noted, "if you tell us you’re going [to break a sanction], we’ll probably order you not to, but if you go and don’t tell us, we’ll probably do nothing."
Greece's outspoken Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis laid out the details for the country's pipeline project with Russia on Thursday and went out of his way to let PM Alexis Tsipras know that the referendum "no" vote is "not going to become a humiliating 'yes'".
In an odd escalation over the Grexit fiasco, where Greece is now expected to provide yet another detailed reform proposal today by midnight at the very latest, it was the one man whose decision will make or break the Eurozone when (if) he decides to impose even more ELA collateral haircuts (or yank ELA entirely) forcing Greece to Grexit by imposing its own currency (since there is no legal mechanism to kick a nation out of the new Berlin Wall) that made some surprisingly candid comments on the fate of the Greek negotiations. According to Reuters, ECB president Mario Draghi voiced "unprecedented doubts about the chances of rescuing Greece from bankruptcy as Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras was due to put forward last-ditch reform proposals on Thursday."
We all know one thing that Greece, Cyprus, and Puerto Rico have in common – severe financial problems. There is something else that they have in common – a high proportion of their energy use is from oil. Most people don’t understand that our world economy runs on cheap energy.