net interest margin
We will be the first to admit that yield curve inversion is not the only factor causing recessions, but through the credit channel it can be an important contributor. Depending on the importance of the credit channel, the Federal Reserve, by pegging the short term rate at zero, have essentially removed one recessionary market mechanism that used to efficiently clear excesses within the financial system. While stability obsessed Keynesians on a quest to the permanent boom regard this as a positive development, the rest of us obviously understand that false stability breeds instability.
Every day when you flip on the media, there is someone telling you that now is the time to "buy" into the market. Of course, if you are buying, then who is selling? The only "net buyers" of equities this year have been "individuals," while "professional" firms have been "net sellers." This is the epitome of the classic "smart money/dumb money" analysis where individuals are used by institutions to offload positions that are no longer optimal. The question is with corporate profits and earnings declining, weak economic data, and the threat of tighter monetary policy - will individuals once again be left "holding the bag" while institutions derisk portfolios in advance of the next decline?
To the extent the Federal Reserve decides to increase interest rates, it should be apparent that such a move would be inconsistent with their prior actions. In fact, it may likely be a desperate effort to re-load the monetary policy gun as opposed to a signal of domestic economic strength. Not only is this a departure from the past, this would lead many to question the Fed’s motives. It is worth keeping in mind that blind trust and confidence in the Fed has propelled many markets much higher than fundamentals justify. The bottom line is that NIM and the Taylor Rule-adjusted curve are both flashing warning signs of economic recession, while the traditional yield curve signal is waving the all clear flag.
If you thought we'd seen the depths of NIRP, think again because as Deutsche Bank notes, the ECB, Riksbank, SNB, and Nationalbank will likely dive further into the monetary Twilight Zone in the months ahead. Only when rates become negative enough to spark a depositor revolt will we have reached the "real" lower bound, but at that point, it will be far too late...
While yesterday's JPM results missed from the top to the bottom, coupled with a surprising and aggressive deleveraging of the bank's balance sheet which has shrunk by over $150 billion in 2015 mostly on the back of a decline in deposits, Bank of America reported numbers which were largely the opposite when it printed a modest beat on both the top line with $20.9 billion in revenues (adjusted sales of $20.6Bn vs Exp. $20.5Bn), down $500 million from a year ago, and the bottom line: generating $0.35 in adjusted earnings in the quarter, 2 cents better than the $0.33 consensus estimate.
Earlier today, Jefferies which is now a part of Leucadia, provided this much anticipated glimpse into how the rest of Wall Street is doing. The answer, if Jefferies is any indication, is "quote horribly" because just like two of the past four quarters, Q3 was also a disaster and indicative of nothing short of a trading bloodbath on Wall Street in the past three months of trading and especially August. In fact, it was so bad for Jefferies, it reported a massive 31% plunge in total revenues down to $579 million resulting in net income of a tiny $2.5 million as a result of what may be only its first negative fixed income revenue print since the financial crisis.
As the chart below shows, from oil to bunds, to US HG and Convertible debt, to USTs and even to Developed Market stocks, turnovers are virtually non-existant, while the only place where there has been a transitory surge in turnover has something to do with Chinese stocks, where volume however has been quite muted in recent months ever since the bubble died.
Unlike previous quarters when JPM's earnings release was a jumble of legal addbacks, MBS charge offs and loan-loss reserve releases, this time it was positively tame by comparison.
Bank of America Revenue Drops, Misses Due To Declining Trading Revenues, Loan Creation And Net Interest MarginSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 04/15/2015 07:02 -0500
One look at BofA's earnings report shows why contrary to popular opinion, the bank that bailed out insolvent Merrill Lynch is far better off to be pnealized with tens of billions in legal fees than running its business unbothered by the racketeering government. The reason: a year after BofA reported $6 billion in litigation charges, moments ago Bank of America announced only $0.4 billion in legal fees, which meant it barely had any credible addbacks. So when looking at its numbers on a realistic, GAAP basis, BofA once again missed EPS, with the bottom line printing at $0.27, or below the $0.29 estimate.
Stocks Gyrate Wildly Following Two Consecutive Stop Hunts, Close With A Whimper Despite More Fed DovishnessSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 04/08/2015 15:08 -0500
If there is one word to describe today's market, as well as the market of the past week, past month, and perhaps all of 2015, it is "stop hunts." Well, technically it's two words.
Following disappointing results from JPM and Wells Fargo yesterday, it was Bank of America's turn to "surprise" investors with its disclosure just how bad its quarter was. And with the bank reporting a 50% collapse in its sales and trading from Q3, down $600 million from a year ago to just $1.7 billion in Q4, it should come as no surprise that the bank just reported Net Income, before the usual spate of amusing addbacks, of $0.25 well below the $0.31 expected. And while one may argue whether ot not BofA's EPS deserve non-GAAP adbacks, it was the Revenue of $18.96 billion, which missed expectations of $21.03 billion by over $2 billion (!) and down $2.7 billion from a year ago, that was truly a showstropper and shows that without the Fed's visible hand manipulating markets every day, banks are a ticking time bomb just waiting to blow.
Earlier today, during the JPM conference call, when Jamie Dimon wasn't busy explaining why the Q4 earnings presentation was sorely missing the page showing JPM's latest Net Interest Margin, a staple placeholder page in the presentation appendix, he found time to lament something totally different. As Bloomberg reports, Dimon lashed out at U.S. regulators for putting his bank "under assault." We don't know how American, or how fair, or how complex, but we know why. The reason: JPMorgan and the rest of the world's banks have now become the world's biggest organized crime syndicate. The evidence? $178 billion in government kickbacks to keep their criminal scheme going for the past 5 years: something which none other than the BCG called a "cost of doing business" - criminal business that is.
Looks like the Jefferies earnings harbinger were right, because with another quarter down, and here is another painful report by JPM, which just launched the Q4 earnings season for financials with a miss on both the top and bottom line, reporting $1.19 in EPS, well below the $1.32 consensus, and just barely above the lower estimate of $1.16. This was a decline from both the previous quarter (by 17 cents) and from a year ago (by 11 cents). Revenues missed as well, with JPM reporting $23.552 billion in top line, a decline of $560 million from a year ago ($1.6 billion lower than Q3), and below the $24.0 billion consensus. And while JPM's latest recurring, non-one time "one-time, non-recurring" charge came as a surprise to most (although how over $30 billion in legal charges can be considered one-time is beyond us), at the same time JPM once again resorted to the oldest trick in the book, taking the benefit of some $704 million in loan loss reserve releases, nearly offsetting the entire negative impact of the legal charge.
Remember when banks said to ignore "one-time, non-recurring" legal fees because they are going away? Well, JPM yesterday showed they aren't. But it was Bank of America today which was slammed with the latest whopping $5.3 billion pretax litigation charge, which pushed its EPS once again into the red. But wait, there's great news: the loss of $0.01 is really a $0.42 non-GAAP adjusted profit if one "adds back" the $0.43 in litigation charges.
We have shown this chart before. We will show it again because, to nobody's surprise, nothing has changed.