Two days after the tragic terrorist attacks in Brussles, the situation remains extremely fluid, with the largest concern being that more sleeper cells may be activated especially since the third man who participated at the Zaventerm airport suicide bombing is still at large. Here, courtesy of the Guardian and Politico, are the most recent key developments out of Belgium.
Ian Taylor, CEO of oil trader Vitol said on Tuesday that "stocks of crude and products continue to build and these will weigh upon the market". Global distillate stocks in the developed world are close to a record high, in the thick of refinery maintenance season, and in the run-up to the time when gasoline use hits its summer high point, but interest in diesel typically fades. "Absent run cuts, the market faces another round of rapid stockbuilds once refineries return from maintenance>"
"Despite our warnings that this person was a foreign terrorist fighter, Belgium could not establish any links with terrorism."
"Returned Syria fighters are a huge threat... It is absolutely unbelievable that our governments allow them to return... Every government in the West, which refuses to do so [lock them up], is a moral accessory if one of these monsters commits an atrocity. ... Our citizens are in mortal danger if we do not restore control over our own national borders."
"This is amazing to me that these people can kill people abroad, come here, and then walk free in the centre of Brussels.... This is intolerable. Open borders are a huge safety risk. Our citizens are in mortal danger if we do not restore control over our own national borders. The cause of all this bloodshed is Islam. We need to de-Islamize the West. That is the only way to safeguard our lives and protect our freedom”.
"Now, the zeitgeist has changed. Ms. Merkel is out of style and out of step. In Britain, France, the Netherlands, Slovakia, Hungary, and the U.S., the candidates getting the most enthusiastic support are those who urge closing borders, restricting trade, and looking to protect themselves from all that is threatening, different, or new. Forget free trade! Forget freedom of travel! Stop immigration… especially of the Muslims and Mexicans! Build a wall! Torture your enemies! Stop trying to expand the empire!"
Dutch lawmakers have voted to ban weapons exports to Saudi Arabia over the kingdom’s violations of humanitarian law, making the Netherlands the first country in the European Union (EU) to follow through on a motion by the European Parliament in February. The landmark bill cites UN figures that Saudi-led troops has killed nearly 6,000 people in Yemen - half of them civilians.
If Europeans think they have a migrant problem now, just wait until they institute a basic income. It’s obvious what will happen...
What are the “top trumps” that could send bond, credit and equity markets substantially higher or lower than currently expected? Here are the six "positioning, policy and profits" indicators that will determine the next leg in the market.
While conventional wisdom suggests that US government bond yields have nowhere to go but up, we believe the economic fundamentals will continue to weigh on interest rates for the foreseeable future.
Any project attempting to fuse these disparate cultures into one monolithic state over the course of just 70 years was by its very nature doomed. It would inevitably encounter insurmountable levels of nationalistic resistance, and eventually the project would stall. That is the point at which we now find ourselves.
Everybody will be trapped...
The U.S. Census Bureau recently released its data on U.S. trade in goods by selected countries and world region for 2015. Based on the data, the U.S. exported over $1.5 trillion and imported over $2.2 trillion in goods throughout 2015. This leaves leaves the U.S. with a negative balance of $735 billion! So the next time someone comes on TV and proclaims that the collapse in world trade volumes is irrelevant to the US equity market and US economy... perhaps point them in this direction.
Around 40% or people who would respond to negative rates said that they would hoard cash. The risk is that this negative sentiment will infect the real economy, serving to depress spending. If so, the danger is that NIRP will have an impact on economic growth that is not merely non-linear, but perversely negative.