New York Stock Exchange
The head of one of the biggest high-frequency trading companies has warned that there are several faultlines in the structure of increasingly electronic, automated financial markets that could lead to a “catastrophe” in the long run. "We’re creeping in the right direction, but unless we proactively address these issues, sometime in the next several decades we are going to experience a catastrophe due to runaway computerised trading,” Tower Research's Mark Gorton said.
Since granting IEX exchange status would lead to an immediate market structure disruption, one which would impair such embedded HFT players as Citadel which, as we have explained previously is the NY Fed's preferred "arms length" intermediator in the market to ingite momentum at critical downward junctions, we are very skeptical that when all is said and done, the SEC will grant IEX what it wants: after all there are too many status quo revenue models at stake, not to mention a potential threat to the Fed's preferred market "intervention" pipeline.
As we said two days ago when looking at the paltry recoveries on their total debt that bankrupt energy debtors are generating in liquidation and bankruptcy asset sales, "the energy bankruptcy party is only just starting." And sure enough, overnight we learned that another company is preparing to throw in the towel following a Reuters report that SandRidge Energy - a shale oil and gas producer in the Mid-Continent region of the U.S. - is exploring debt restructuring options, "as the heavily indebted U.S. oil and gas exploration and production company struggles with the fallout from plunging energy prices."
Warren Buffett has been consistently wrong on oil, but many experts are calling a bottom on oil prices now that the investor extraordinaire has upped his ante in Phillips 66, betting that he can’t be wrong three times in a row.
"The Fed has painted itself into a corner... [the current situation's severity] is very similar to what you get before you slip into a crisis....The bumpy ride is probably not over yet... stay on guard."
Derivatives like credit default swaps turned a mere bubble in the US housing market into a global financial catastrophe...
My overriding theme and the central drama for the coming year is that unexpected events can take on greater importance as the Federal Reserve ends its near-decade-long Zero Interest Rate Policy. Consensus premises and forecasts will likely fall flat, in a rather spectacular manner. The low-conviction and directionless market that we saw in 2015 could become a no-conviction and very-much-directed market (i.e. one that's directed lower) in 2016. There will be no peace on earth in 2016, and our markets could lose a cushion of protection as valuations contract. (Just as "malinvestment" represented a key theme this year, we expect a compression of price-to-earnings ratios to serve as a big market driver in 2016.) In other words, we don't think 2016 will be fun.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is what "trading" has become.
America's equity markets are broken. Individuals and institutions make transactions in rigged markets favoring short-term players. The root cause of the problem is that stocks trade on numerous venues, including 11 traditional exchanges and dozens of so-called dark pools that allow buyers and sellers to work out of the public eye. This market fragmentation allows high-frequency traders and exchanges to profit at the expense of long-term investors. Mr. Lewis was right.
There’s only one investment we can think of that many people either love or hate reflexively, almost without regard to market performance: gold. And, to a lesser degree, silver. It’s strange that these two metals provoke such powerful psychological reactions - especially among people who dislike them. Nobody has an instinctive hatred of iron, copper, aluminum, or cobalt. The reason, of course, is that the main use of gold has always been as money. And people have strong feelings about money. From an economic viewpoint, however, money is just a medium of exchange and a store of value. Efforts to turn it into a political football invariably are signs of a hidden agenda, or perhaps a psychological aberration. So, let’s take some recent statements, assertions, and opinions that have been promulgated in the media and analyze them.
When the word 'bloodbath' just doesn't quite sum it up, distressed debt investors's bonuses have been obliterated in 2015. Despite seeking safety away from oil and coal companies, one trader exclaimed, the pain is "like cancer, it's spreading throughout the body," as every industry from materials to retail and industrials has collapsed... though, as Bloomberg reports, some investments stood out in their awfulness.
“To the intelligent man or woman, life appears infinitely mysterious, but the stupid have an answer for everything.” ~Edward Abbey
Ben Bernanke's Employer Citadel Alleges That "Leveling The Playing Field" Will Actually Hurt Stock MarketsSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 12/05/2015 14:53 -0500
The market is now officially so broken, that the biggest HFT-player no longer even makes any sense.
As was extensively reported over the weekend, the Pfizer-Allergan tax-inverting, reverse-merger (in which the far smaller Allergan would end up "buying" Pfizer, courtesy of fungible debt which doesn't care where it ends up as long as there are cash flows) would be announced this morning, and sure enough, moments ago the long-awaited press release finally hit.
- Security jitters drive European investors back to safe havens (Reuters)
- Global Anti-ISIS Alliance Begins to Emerge (WSJ)
- Merkel says cancelling soccer match was 'responsible' decision (Reuters)
- Paris attacker may have had accomplice on journey through Balkans (Reuters)
- Drop Assad demands if you want to unite against Islamic State: Russia to West (Reuters)
- Putin sets up commission to combat terrorism financing (Reuters)