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.
"As SOE restructuring progresses, it will also become more apparent that Chinese banks need to be rescued. We estimate that the total losses in the banking sector could reach CNY8 trillion, equivalent to more than 60% of commercial banks’ capital, 50% of fiscal revenues and 12% of GDP."
- Global stocks see-saw, yields slip as investors get week off to cautious start (Reuters)
- Bayer defies critics with $62 billion Monsanto offer (Reuters)
- Iran has no plans to freeze oil exports, official says ahead of OPEC meeting (Reuters)
- U.S. lifts arms ban on old foe Vietnam as regional tensions simmer (Reuters)
- Anthem, Cigna Privately Bicker as They Seek Merger Approval (WSJ)
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.
Financial and economic prospects for the Eurozone have many similarities to the 1972-75 period in the UK, which this writer remembers vividly. This time, the prospects facing the Eurozone potentially could be worse. The obvious difference is the far higher levels of debt, which will never allow the ECB to run interest rates up sufficiently to kill price inflation. More likely, positive rates of only one or two per cent would be enough to destabilise the Eurozone’s financial system. Let us hope that these dangers are exaggerated, and the final outcome will not be systemically destabilising, not just for Europe, but globally as well. A wise man, faced with the unknown, believes nothing, expects the worst, and takes precautions.
With Donald Trump going after Jeff Bezos' "capture" of The Washington Post this week, along with Facebook's alleged liberalization of the mainstream's news feeds, the topic of press independence is once again back out of conspiracy theory back-rooms and near top of mind for many average indoctrinated joes. Almost thirty years ago, Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky claimed that media are “effective and powerful ideological institutions that carry out a system-supportive propaganda function," but as ProMarket's Luigi Zingales exposes, for Italy, there is some circumstantial evidence that Italian newspapers are captured by banks.
The current financial market volatility increasingly reflects loss of faith in policy makers. Celebrity central bankers are learning that they must constantly produce new miracles for their followers. For the moment, the volatility is confined to financial markets and the effect on the real economy is limited. The ever present risk is of a doom loop where financial market problems lead to banking system weakness which, in turn, feeds a credit crunch and a contraction in economic activity. That familiar movie does not have a happy ending.
In reality, it will not be a single factor but an unexpected concatenation of events, that result in a financial crisis, driving global contagion and an economic slowdown.
Moments ago all of our warnings about P2P lending were validated (quite painfully for those still long the company) and the Peer2Peer bubble may have finally burst, when as part of its Q1 earnings release, the board of directors announced that on May 6, 2016 it had accepted the resignation of Renaud Laplanche as Chairman and CEO. His resignation followed an internal review of sales of $22 million in near-prime loans to a single investor.
China's Crashing - Stocks, Commodities Plunge After "Top Authority" Implies "Abandoning Loose Policy"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 05/09/2016 01:04 -0400
"After comprehensive judgment, our economic recovery cannot be U-shaped, cannot be V-shaped, but will be L-shaped," warns an 'authoritative' person according to a shocking report published by Government mouthpiece People's Daily. The report, explaining why investors should not expect growth to pick up soon or expect more stimulus to come soon further sets expectations for China to "face the issue of rising non-performing loans" and not continue to create zombie companies. The result - a bloodbath in stocks and commodities...
Is there anyone on the planet who's actually stupid enough to believe these New Normal charts are healthy and sustainable? We doubt it. Rather, the apologists, toadies, apparatchiks and flacks are being well-paid to cheerlead, and the "leadership" (using the term lightly) of the discredited institutions are terrified of what will happen when people finally catch on. The New Normal is not sustainable.
Italy's bad bank bailouts fund, "Atlas", is about to become the proud new owner of around 90% of Italy's Popolare di Vicenza after investors only bought a fraction of the mid-tier bank's €1.5 billion cash call, Reuters reports. Popolare di Vicenza, which was due to announce the outcome of the public share offer later on Friday, said earlier in the day that it had raised €4.25 billion, at the lower end of a 4-6 billion euro range it had initially targeted, from 67 mostly domestic financial institutions.
Low interest rates attempt to buy time. The idea is to bring consumption forward until the economy heals on its own as capital projects are completed. But those projects never began this time. The end result is ever-higher debt that borrows more and more from the future. Unfortunately, it borrows from the future without making the future any brighter through solutions to root causes of economic ailments. At some point, the “future” becomes “today”.
Are interest rates low because of the action of central banks or because of unresolved debt deflation?