Neoliberal economics is blind to reality and serves to justify the destruction of the economic prospects of the Western World. It remains to be seen if Russia and China can develop a different economics or whether these rising superpowers will fall victim to the “junk economics” that has destroyed the West. With so many Chinese and Russian economists educated in the US tradition, the prospects of Russia and China might not be any better than ours. The entire world could go down the tubes together.
Oe of the most surprising developments in recent months has been the relative scarcity of any high-profile commodity blow-ups or trader snafus, despite the tumbling commodity prices. That changed today when Dutch grain-trading firm, Nidera BV (whose name is an acronym consisting of the countries in which it operates: Netherlands, India, Deutschland, England, Russia, Argentina) has suffered a crushing blow as a result of a "rogue trader" whose actions led to "significant losses" in the company's biofuels business. Nidera CEO Ton van der Laan said the grain-trading house has since exited the biofuels business and closed all the deals linked to the losses. "There is a significant loss."
Europe's refugee crisis is getting worse by the day. Less than 24 hours after Germany announced it would impose border controls with Austria, followed promptly by the Czech Republic, Slovenia and now the Netherlands, German vice chancellor Sigmar Gabriel predicted that as many as 1 million refugees may arrive by the end of the year as other nations moved to fortify their frontiers. In the meantime, however, Europe is dramatically escalating measures to halt the influx and as AFP reported earlier today, the European Union has now approved military action against human traffickers in the Mediterranean Sea.
Europe's refugee crisis just took a dramatic turn for the worse, and strikes at the very hear of Europe's Shengen customs union which has allowed borderless travel within Europe for decades. As Bloomberg reports, the Italian Province of Bolzano in Northern Italy said in a statement that it agreed with the Italian government on request by German Federal State of Bavaria by "communicating a willingness to restore border controls at Brenner and temporarily suspend the Schengen agreement."
During the last crisis period, starting in March 2007 and lasting through November 2008, foreign central banks withdrew gold for a total of 20 out of 21 consecutive months, repatriating a grand total of 409 tons of gold. The last period of peak redemption culminated with the failure of Lehman in September 2008, the near failure of AIG in October and November 2008, coupled with the Fed's bailout of the western financial system. If past is prologue, one should ask: what current or future event is driving the ongoing redemption of 246 tons of gold (and rising) from the NY Fed this time?
UN Privacy Chief Joseph Cannataci says we are dealing with a world even worse that anything Orwell could have foreseen..."there are many parts of the English countryside where there are more cameras than George Orwell could ever have imagined. So the situation in some cases is far worse already"
July Was Warmest Month On Record NOAA Reports, Lists All "Signifiicant Climate Anomalies And Events"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 08/20/2015 19:58 -0400
While some, perhaps not California farmers, will disagree with NOAA's assessment of the world's atmospheric conditions, earlier today the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration declared that July was the warmest month ever recorded for the globe and was also the record warmest for global oceans, putting a full stop to a year that has been characterized by numerous perplexing atmospheric outliers around the globe but perhaps none other more so than NOAA's earlier assessment that the winter of 2015 was also the warmest on record despite the much discussed US winter, where for the second year in a row the economic slowdown was blamed on a colder than usual winter. Go figure: perhaps here too we need double seasonal adjustments.
Dazed And Confused: Futures Tumble Below 200 DMA, Oil Near $40, Soaring Treasurys Signal Deflationary DelugeSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 08/20/2015 07:00 -0400
It is unclear what precipitated it (some blamed China concerns, fears of rate hikes, commodity weakness, technical picture deterioration although it's all just goalseeking guesswork) but overnight S&P futures followed yesterday's unexpected slide following what were explicitly dovish Fed minutes, and took another sharp leg lower down by almost 20 points, set to open below the 200 DMA again, as the dazed and confused investing world reacts to what both the Treasury and Oil market signal is a deflationary deluge. Indeed, oil is about to trade under $40 while the 10Y Treasury was last seen trading at 2.07%. Incidentally, the last time oil was here in March of 2009, the Fed was about to unleash QE 1. This time, so called experts are debating if the Fed will hike rates in one month or three.
Define irony: in a quarter in which Greece was supposed to have been near death (at least according to the worst PMI print in history and of course, judging by the bank lines in front of the capital controlled institutions), yesterday we learned that Greek GDP surged relative to expectations rising by 0.8%, which was what analysts had expected but with a minus sign in front of it. Then overnight, we got the rest of European GDP, including the big three: Germany, France and Italy. The results were nothing short of a big disappointment. At the Euroarea level, the result was also a big negative surprise with Q3 GDP rising 0.3%, down from 0.4%, and below expectations. This was the worst GDP print since Q3 2014.
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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.
Chinese Stocks Slide Again, Copper Tumbles To 6 Year Low; Greek Market Crashes After One Month Trading HaltSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 08/03/2015 06:57 -0400
If China had hoped it would root out intervention by eliminating Citadel's rigging algos, and unleash a buying spree it was wrong: the Shanghai Composite opened negative, and never managed to cross into the green, despite the usual last hour push higher, ending down -1.1% and down for 6 of the past 7 days. The real action, however, was not in Asia but in Europe, and specifically Greece, where the stock market finally reopened after a 1+ month "capital control" hiatus. Despite the attempt to micro manage the reopening, the result was not pretty, with stocks crashing 23% at the open and staging barely a rebound trading -17% as of this moment, even as banks promptly traded down to the -30% limit as the realization that an equity-eviscerating recapitalization (or bail-in) is now inevitable.
A third Greek bailout involving loans from the European Stability Mechanism (ESM), the eurozone’s bailout scheme, is now being negotiated. The start was quite rocky, with haggling over the precise location in Athens where negotiations need to take place and Greek officials once again withholding information to creditors. Therefore, few still believe that it will be possible to conclude a deal in time for Greece to repay 3.2 billion euro to the ECB on 20 August. Several national Parliaments in the Eurozone would need to approve a final deal, which would necessitate calling their members back from recess around two weeks before the 20th, so it’s weird that French EU Commissioner Pierre Moscovici still seems so confident that the deadline can be met.
If Greece does find it has a legal basis to criminally charge Varoufakis with treason merely for preparing for a Plan B, then it brings up an interesting question: if Varoufakis was a criminal merely for preparing for existing the Euro, then comparable treason charges should also be lobbed against none other than Varoufakis' nemesis - Eurogroup president and Dutch finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem.