Non-performing assets

China Has Quietly Bailed Out Over $220 Billion In Bad Debt In The Past 2 Months

Today we learned that not only was China going through with its unprecedented debt-for-equity swap, but it has already equitized over $220 billion in non-performing loans. Note: these are not traditional, Chapter 11 prepacks where the debt is converted into equity and the debt holder gets the keys to the company. In this case, it is the Chinese government itself which indirectly via state-owned banks, has become the de facto owner of countless companies.

China May Have Found A "Solution" To Its Massive Bad Debt Problem

Last April, China had an idea about how to boost the country’s dying credit impulse. One idea was to supercharge the country’s nascent ABS market which was barely producing $50 billion in supply per year. That effort failed in large part due to banks' unwillingness to offload their good assets in a time when NPLs are rising. So you can probably guess what Beijing's "solution" is.

S&P Downgrades Banks With Highest Energy Exposure; Expects "Sharp Increase" In Non-Performing Assets

Moments ago S&P continued its downgrade cycle, this time taking the axe to the regional banks with the highest energy exposure due to "expectations for higher loan losses." Specifically, its lowered its long-term issuer credit ratings on four U.S. regional banks by one notch: BOK Financial Corp., Comerica Inc., Cullen/Frost  Bankers Inc., and Texas Capital Bancshares. The  outlooks on these banks are negative.

Rally Hobbled As Ugly China Reality Replaces Japan NIRP Euphoria; Oil Rebound Fizzles

It didn't take much to fizzle Friday's Japan NIRP-driven euphoria, when first ugly Chinese manufacturing (and service) PMI data reminded the world just what the bull in the China shop is leading to a 1.8% Shanghai drop on the first day of February. Then it was about oil once more when Goldman itself said not to expect any crude production cuts in the near future. Finally throw in some very cautious words by the sellside what Japan's act of NIRP desperation means, and it becomes clear why stocks on both sides of the pond are down, why crude is not far behind, and why gold continues to rise.

Puerto Rico's 3rd Largest Bank Fails

Based on Bloomberg data, Doral Bank is the 3rd largest (by assets) bank in Puerto Rico...or rather was. After a 58% collapse in the share price today, news broke after the close:

*PUERTO RICO'S DORAL BANK PLACED UNDER FDIC RECEIVERSHIP, BANCO POPULAR AGREES TO BUY DORAL BANK OPERATIONS

It appears Non-Performing Loans were over 40%. Popular will take the deposits (and 8 of Doral's 26 branches) and the FDIC eats the bad debt (estimates to cost the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $748.9 million).

China's "Minsky Moment" Is Here, Morgan Stanley Finds

"It is clear to us that speculative and Ponzi finance dominate China’s economy at this stage. The question is when and how the system’s current instability resolves itself. The Minsky Moment refers to the moment at which a credit boom driven by speculative and Ponzi borrowers begins to unwind. It is the point at which Ponzi and speculative borrowers are no longer able to roll over their debts or borrow additional capital to make interest payments....  We believe that China finds itself today at exactly this juncture."

Frontrunning: October 25

  • Contractors describe scant pre-launch testing of U.S. healthcare site (Reuters)
  • Carney Says BOE Revamp Offers Wider Access to Cheaper Funds (BBG)
  • Help wanted in Fukushima: Low pay, high risks and gangsters (Reuters)
  • Merkel and Hollande to change intelligence ties with US (FT)
  • Twitter IPO pegs valuation at modest $11 billion (Reuters)
  • NSA monitored calls of 35 world leaders after US official handed over contacts (Guardian)
  • Officials alert foreign services that Snowden has documents on their cooperation with U.S. (WaPo)
  • Scottish Nationalists Lose Vote After Plant Threatened With Axe (BBG)
  • Fernández contemplates a train wreck in Argentine elections (FT)
  • Irish Government will consider ‘best options’ for bailout exit (Irish Times)