In the latest tragic news from the world of finance, earlier today Zurich Insurance, the largest Swiss insurer which employs 55,000 people and provides general insurance and life insurance products in more than 170 countries, reported that Martin Senn, the company's former chief executive officer who stepped down in a December reshuffle, has committed suicide. He was 59.
With the US closed for Memorial Day and UK markets also offline, overnight volumes have been weaker than normal on little newsflow. The main story remains the stronger USD which not only led to the lowest Yuan fixing since February 2011 but pushed the USDJPY as high as 111.50 overnight before paring gains. Europe’s Stoxx 600 is unchanged on poor volume, after earlier rising above the 200 DMA for the first time in 2016. US equity futures were 0.2%, or 4 points higher, currently resting just above 2,101 with the last trading day of May tomorrow expected to push the cash market over 2,100 as well.
As if on cue, NATO made it even more explicit that its primary prerogative remains to provoke Russia into an offensive move, when over the weekend the Times reported that the British military may soon start stockpiling tanks and other heavy equipment in Eastern Europe as part of NATO's military beef up close to Russia's border. The decision may come at the upcoming NATO summit in Warsaw in July.
Who is to blame for Trump and Sanders?
It is not a secret that democracy can be used to abolish democracy. It may have finally begun to dawn on the people that Swedish Sweden will soon be lost forever, and in many areas replaced by a Middle Eastern state of affairs, where different immigrant groups (mainly Muslims) make war on each other as well as on the Swedes. There is no country where Islam is dominant that can be considered a democracy with freedom of speech and equal justice under law.
"Greed and fear are teachers... Do not read the newspapers, or follow the news in any way or form...It doesn’t mean ignore the news; it means that you go from the events to the news, not the other way around... If something is nonsense, you say it and say it loud...One should never do anything without skin in the game."
Greece is being destroyed by the EU that it so foolishly joined and trusted. The newspaper headlines are nothing but fluff that provide cover for the IMF to succumb to presssure and violate its own rules. The cover lets the IMF say that a (future unspecified) debt writedown will enable Greece to service the remainder of its debt and, therefore, the IMF can lend Greece the money to pay the private banks. To call the looting of a country and its people a “bailout” is Orwellian. The brainwashing is so successful that even the media and politicians of looted Greece call the financial imperialism that Greece is suffering a “bailout.”
The single biggest event overnight was the PBOC's devaluation of the Yuan to the lowest since March 2011, setting the fixing at 6.5693, the highest in over 5 years and in direct response to a stronger dollar, which however if one looks at the DXY remains well below the recent highs in the 100 range, suggesting for China this is only just beggining. However, the fact that there was not more volatility in onshore and offshore overnight FX also comforted the market that at the same time as its was devaluing the PBOC was also intervening in the FX market, thus providing some assurance it would not allow runaway "risk off" sentiment prevail, nor would it promote another blitz round of capital outflows, leading to another gradual levitation in overnight risk.
Yesterday's weak dollar headfake has ended and overnight the USD rallied, while Asian stocks dropped to the lowest level in 7 weeks and crude oil fell as speculation returned that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates as early as next month. The pound jumped and European stocks gained thanks to a weaker EUR.
Today we got confirmation how much of an uphill climb the Temer administration will have when Brazil's Folha de S. Paulo newspaper reported that it has had access to recordings of conversations that took place in March between then-senator Romero Juca and current minister, and a former executive linked to state-run oil company Petrobras. In the conversations, the minister allegedly says a change in federal government leadership would lead to an agreement to prevent the wide corruption probe dubbed Carwash from proceeding.
Government bonds rose and the yen strengthened as investors weighed the timing of the Federal Reserve’s next increase in interest rates and the outlook for inflation. Commodities slid, led by metals, while stocks in Europe declined. Treasury 30-year yields fell for a third day. The yen rose from near this month’s low. Futures on the S&P 500 also declined after initially jumping higher in thinly traded, illiquid tape.
For First Time Since World War II, "Right-Wing, Anti-Immigrant, Euroskeptic" Set To Become President Of AustriaSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 05/22/2016 11:49 -0400
One month ago, pro-European voices in Austria, and all of Europe, were suddenly muted when in the first round of the Austrian presidential election, Norbert Hofer head of Austria Freedom Party (FPO), described as a "Euroskeptic, right-wing, anti-immigrant party" crushed his opposition buoyed by a migration crisis that has heightened fears about employment and security across the continent, and gathered a whopping 35% of the vote leaving the other five legacy candidates far behind. Today, Austria holds the decisive, run-off round between Norbert Hofer and former Greens leader Alexander van der Bellen, which according to preliminary opinions polls was set to be a close vote... although probably not that close.
Love it or hate it, cash is playing an increasingly less important role in society. In some ways this is great news for consumers. The rise of mobile and electronic payments means faster, convenient, and more efficient purchases in most instances. However, there is also a darker side in the shift to a cashless society. Governments and central banks have a different rationale behind the elimination of cash transactions, and as a result, the so-called “war on cash” is on.
The EU-Turkey migrant deal, designed to halt the flow of migrants from Turkey to Greece, is falling apart just two months after it was reached. European officials are now looking for a back-up plan - a confidential plan to house all migrants arriving from Turkey on Greek islands in the Aegean Sea. Migrants would remain on the islands permanently while their asylum applications are being processed. The plan, which Bild reports is being discussed at the highest echelons of European power, would effectively turn parts of Greece into massive refugee camps for many years to come.