Natural Gas

Frontrunning: July 10

  • 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)

Are The EU And Asia Turning A Blind Eye To Russian Sanctions?

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."

Draghi Voices "Unprecedented Doubt" Greek Solution Will Be Found: Complete Greek Overnight Summary

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."

What Greece, Cyprus, And Puerto Rico Have In Common

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.

Frontrunning: July 7

  • Greece faces last chance to stay in euro as cash runs out (Reuters)
  • Tsipras Begins Brussels Campaign to Keep Greece Inside the Euro (BBG)
  • Greek Crisis Shows How Germany’s Power Polarizes Europe (WSJ)
  • Eurogroup Head Dijsselbloem Calls for ‘Credible’ Greece Package (BBG)
  • Europe Not Playing ‘Domino Theory’ Leaves Markets Calm on Greece (BBG)
  • China stocks fall again despite support measures (Reuters)
  • Chinese Trading Suspensions Freeze $1.4 Trillion of Shares Amid Rout (BBG)
  • Crude Creeps Higher After Downturn (WSJ)

Russia Is Taking Full Advantage Of Greek Crisis

With Greece’s debt situation spiraling downwards, the European project is showing some cracks. The July 5 referendum could end up amounting to a mandate on whether or not Greece stays in the euro. In the meantime, the turmoil offers an opportunity for Russia to advance its interests... and with The Krlemlin reporting that Putin held discussions with Hollande today, it appears something is going on behind the scenes.

One Heretical, And Not-So-Simple, View On The Greek Referendum

... Greeks should be united in their fight for the rule of law and against the cleptocracy, and not divided over a referendum on an absurd question. That division, however, serves the cleptocrats well—they can go about their usual ways unnoticed. Whoever said “divide and rule” knew what they were talking about.

FDIC Sounds Alarm On Insolvent, "Zero Hedged" Oil & Gas Producers

"U.S. regulators are sounding the alarm about banks’ exposure to oil-and-gas producers, a move that could limit their ability to lend to companies battered by a yearlong slump in prices," WSJ reports, reinforcing the notion that North America's "zero hedged" O&G sector is in for a rough ride.

China Crash Accelerates, Drags Composite Under 4000; US Futures Flat Ahead Of Nonfarm Payrolls

If it was Greece's intention to crush the Chinese stock market instead of Europe's, well - it succeeded.  Because despite the PBOC and politburo throwing everything but QE at the stock market, China stocks closed down sharply on Thursday after another wild trading day as investors shrugged off regulators' intensified efforts to put a floor under the sliding market, by cutting trading fees and easing margin rules, which has now crashed 25% in about two weeks wiping out $2.5 trillion of the peak $10 trillion in Chinese stock market cap as of June 14. This ultimately resulted with the Shanghai Composite closing under 4000 for the first time since April.

Russia Or China - Washington's Conflict Over Who Is Public Enemy #1

America’s grand strategy, its long-term blueprint for advancing national interests and countering major adversaries, is in total disarray. Top officials lurch from crisis to crisis, improvising strategies as they go, but rarely pursuing a consistent set of policies. Some blame this indecisiveness on a lack of resolve at the White House, but the real reason lies deeper. It lurks in a disagreement among foreign policy elites over whether Russia or China constitutes America’s principal great-power adversary.

Could Armenia Be The Next Ukraine?

When Konstantin Kosachyov, the head of the Russian Federation Council's International Relations Committee, said the protests in Armenia against a 16.7 percent power price hike follow a color revolution scenario sponsored by Western powers, many commentators rushed to compare the crisis in Yerevan with the 2014 protests in Kyiv that toppled the pro-Russian president, Victor Yanukovych. However, the street protests in Armenia have more to do with the overall economic situation in the country than with proxy clashes between foreign countries.

Russia Promises "Economic And Military" Aid To Syria As US Refloats Assad "Chemcial Weapons" Trial Balloon

The Syrian "chemical weapons" narrative is back and with it is the confirmaton that Russia will not leave the US dictate middle eastern borders unilaterally. Syria's foreign minister said on a visit to Moscow on Monday that top ally Russia had promised to send political, economic and military aid to his country. "I got a promise of aid to Syria - politically, economically and militarily," Walid al-Moualem said at a televised news conference in Moscow after meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin.