Rating Agency

Moody's Says Failure To Raise Debt Limit Does Not Mean Default As Jack Lew Pleads To "Honor Our Obligations"

In an op-ed released today in the USA Today, the US Treasury Secretary takes his appeal to raise the U.S. debt target once again, this time to the $19.6 trillion number disclosed here previously, by pointing fingers at "some in Congress" who "are endangering this progress by once again manufacturing a crisis for our country. By waiting to the last minute to act on the debt limit, Congress could cause a terrible accident. This is not an abstraction; failure to raise the debt limit would mean devastating impacts for taxpayers, consumers and businesses." Only this is not really true...

Fitch Downgrades Brazil From BBB To BBB-, Outlook Negative - Full Text

Brazil's economic recession is likely to be deeper and longer than Fitch's earlier expectations and its performance has diverged materially from those of its rating peers. Medium-term prospects also look weak compared to peers and most other large emerging markets. Fitch forecasts that Brazil's economy will contract by 3% and 1%, respectively in 2015 and 2016 before recording modest growth in 2017, with risks skewed largely to the downside.

"Liar Loans" Are Back! 2008 Here We Come

Liar loans are back from the dead which means that if you look under the hood, you might just have a shoddy credit or two hiding in the collateral pool of your triple-A mortgage-backed paper. Meanwhile, in a further sign that we've learned nothing since the crisis, non-Agency RMBS is set to stage a comeback.

Policy Confusion Reigns As China Caps Muni Debt, Uncaps Bank Debt, And Bad Loans Soar

In the latest example of Beijing attempting to deleverage and re-leverage all at once, China has lifted a cap on loan-to-deposit ratios for banks while simultaneously capping local government debt issuance for 2015. Meanwhile, bad loans are still on the rise at China's "big four" banks, underscoring the extent to which China's economy is rapidly deteriorating and drawing a line under the risk the PBoC is running by forcing banks to lend into an extraordinarily uncertain environment.

Just As Brazil Hits Rock Bottom, Things Are About To Get Even Worse

For anyone who might have missed it, Brazil is in trouble. "Macro imbalances in Brazil are large, the worst in almost a decade. The fiscal deficit at -8.1% of GDP is also at its widest in more than 20 years, with the combined twin deficits now tracking at a disquieting 12.5% of GDP. Brazil stands at a crossroads – both roads involve currency depreciation."

"Debt Is A Fickle Witch"

Debt is a fickle witch. When left to its own devices, which it has been for nearly seven years with interest rates at the zero bound, it tends to get into trouble. Unchecked credit initially seeps, and eventually finds itself fracked, into the dark, dank nooks and crannies of the fixed income markets whose infrastructures and borrowers are ill-suited to handle the capacity. Consider the two flashiest badges of wealth in America - cars and homes...

Violent Government Buying Spree Sends Chinese Stocks Soaring At Close Of Trading; Yellen On Deck

On a day when market participants will care about only one thing - how hawkish (or dovish) the FOMC sounds at 2:00 pm (no Yellen press conference today) - Chinese stocks provided the usual dramatic sideshow and traded unchanged or modestly negative for most of the day despite the latest $100 billion injection, the close of trading on Wednesday was a mirror image of what happened in the last hour on Monday, as various Chinese "plunge-protection" mechanism went into a furious buying frenzy and government-backed funds rushed to buy anything that trades in the last 60 minutes of trading in what may be the most glaring example of banging the close yet.