For the 10th month in a row, Dallas Fed's Manufacturing Outlook printed a deteriorating negative signal. At -12.7 (against expectations of a modest rise from September's -9.5 to -6.5) it appears ex-Dallas Fed head Fisher was dead wrong as recession warnings loom large. Below the already ugly headline, the components were a disaster. While production and employment rose (somehow), New orders plunged, Prices Received continued to fall, and Average employee workweek fell for the 9thg time in the last 10 months. Perhaps worst was the drop in hope amid falling workweek and wage growth expectations.
Having soared 175 pips in two days, on the back of ECB and PBOC actions, USDJPY is rolling over this morning as a senior adviser to Japanese PM Shinzo Abe tells Reuters that The Bank of Japan "can wait a while" before easing more. This follows another adviser's comments on Friday that "further easing wasn't necessary." With a trail of broken markets (bonds first and now stocks), and broken promises (only 25% of Japanese now believe Abenomics will boost the economy), Abe faces an uphill battle in winning the fight against the "deflationary mindset" that officials have been so adamant they have already won.
- European shares slip as easing expectations fade (Reuters)
- Valeant and Pharmacy More Intertwined Than Thought (WSJ)
- The Pawn Isolated: Valeant, Philidor and the Annals of Fraud (WSJ)
- Strongest Afghan Quake Since 1949 Triggers Search for Survivors (BBG)
- EU Agrees To Tighten Border Controls And Slow Migrant Arrival (AP)
- Volkswagen Suspends More Employees (WSJ)
- Volkswagen Loses Global Sales Lead to Toyota Amid Diesel Scandal (BBG)
"It could simply be 1998/99 all over again. After all, a “speculative blow-off” in asset prices is one logical conclusion to a world dominated by central bank liquidity, technological disruption & wealth inequality. What worked back then? What rose from the rubble of 1998? How would one position for one final melt-up on Wall Street..."
Eurodollar curve captures the mechanics of Fed expectations in a simple way. Away from the very front end, the curve dynamics is displays a rather rigid structure where a single risk premium parameter explains bulk of the spreads movement in different sectors of the curve. Typically, in anticipation of Fed hikes or cuts, the market makes up its mind about the terminal Fed funds (Greens) and begins to price in the rates path around that. The more aggressive the initial hikes are, the less they will have to do later
Doing as Yellen and her counterparts demand is the biggest risk of all. The Yellen Doctrine requires that central banks be both correct and able, abilities that have been (and can only be) in utter short supply. Her view would show more proactive and effective central bank management where only reactive and impromptu, last minute white-knuckling has abounded. Central banks have been in the past year only holding on for dear life, which is where obscurity has been their benefit. In the end, however, it will bring about their own downfall as it only serves to make matters worse. Yellen wants the central bank to be viewed as almost godlike, but they continually reveal themselves weak, deceptive and ineffectual; eschewing all long run sustainability in order to just make it through one day at a time.
The powers that be have lost control. After almost a century of playing the Wizard of Oz, the curtain is disintegrating. Institutions to ensure control, stability and prosperity are failing. People and markets were not to be trusted and most of these institutions were established to protect against such freedom. Bureaucrats, central planners and big governments were to be the answers for a better world. The damage of nearly a century of this nonsense is suddenly becoming evident. Things fall apart is characterized by institutions that no longer are trusted or believed in.
The previous Bubble was of the Fed’s making, and our central bank lost control. It became a Hobson’s Choice issue in the eyes of the Fed, and they fully accommodated the Bubble. These days, the Fed and global central bankers face a similar but much more precarious Bubble Dynamic: The Fed specifically targeted higher securities market prices as its prevailing post-mortgage finance Bubble (“helicopter money”) reflationary mechanism. This ensured that the Fed would again be unwilling to impose any monetary restraint before it would then become too risky to remove accommodation (Einstein’s definition of insanity?). In concert, global central bankers now aggressively accommodate financial Bubbles.
Equity markets have not priced a meaningful slowdown in global corporate earnings. They are still pricing in central banker commentary... for now. History teaches us that equity turbulence accompanied by meaningful economic softness often marks the turn from a secular bull market in to a bear market.
This is also why the debt ceiling needs to be raised every year, and the US has doubled the national debt over the last 8 years.
“October is a particularly dangerous month to speculate in stocks. Followed by July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June, December, August, and February.” – Mark Twain
With crude prices still stuck in the doldrums, economists at Handelsbanken say the Norges Bank will soon be forced to cut rates to zero in order to stave off a looming recession. What we want to know is this: if the housing bubble that the Norges Bank has helped to inflate bursts, how does the central bank plan to deal with the fallout (which will be amplified by the economic drag from low oil prices) when it has exhausted its counter-cyclical capacity by cutting rates to zero?
To say that China, which a few days ago reported GDP of 6.9% which "beat" expectations and which a few hours ago reported Chinese home prices rose in more than half of tracked cities for the first time in 17 months, stunned everyone with its rate cut on Friday night, meant clearly for the benefit of US stocks, as well as the global commodity market, is an understatement: nobody expected this. As a result strategists have been scrambling to put China's 6th rate cut in the past year (one taking place just ahead of this weekend's Fifth plenum) in context. Here are the first responses we have seen this morning.
Yesterday morning, when previewing the day's tumultuous events, we said that "Futures Are Firm On Hope Draghi Will Give Green Light To BTFD." And boy did Draghi give a green light, that and then some, when his press conference unleashed one of the biggest one-day US equity rallies in 2015. This morning it has been more of the same, with global market momentum on the heels of Draghi's confirmation that Europe's economy is again backsliding (it's a good thing, if only for stocks), leading to momentum for US equity futures, which together with soaring tech/cloud, earnings if no other, are on their way to take out recent all time highs.
Given what the Japanese have been subjected to in the past two and a half years of QQE, it is nearly criminal to suggest they need only more of it. None of it has worked as promised and stated, so what might have changed? Absolutely nothing except the arrangement of qualifiers and excuses that litter the same shared central bank speech delivered over and over of late. Kuroda says “robust”, Yellen proclaims “strong”, and both only confirm they live not of this world’s economy.