Reuters

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Frontrunning: August 14





  • Police fire tear gas, stun grenades at Missouri protesters (Reuters)
  • Putin’s Pipeline Bypassing Ukraine at Risk Amid Conflict (BBG)
  • Russia's Largest Oil Company Seeks $42 billion to Weather Sanctions (WSJ)
  • Shells hit central Donetsk, Russian aid convoy heads towards border (Reuters)
  • U.S. Tightens Sanctions, Putting More Russian Companies at Risk (BBG)
  • How to Blindly Score 43% Profit Overnight in China Stocks (BBG)
  • Tears guaranteed: San Diego Pension Dials Up the Risk to Combat a Shortfall (WSJ)
  • Euro Recovery Halts as Germany Shrinks, France Stagnates (BBG)
  • Billionaire Found in Middle of Bribery Case Avoids U.S. Probe (BBG)
  • Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama 'Hug It Out' on Martha's Vineyard (WSJ)
 
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Ebola Control Goes 'Medieval': From Patient Zero To Pandemic In 7 Months





A report in The New England Journal of Medicine traces the spread of the recent Ebola outbreak from Gueckedou, Guinea, to nations worldwide. As The NY Times reports, West African governments have gone 'medieval' as they have revived a disease-fighting tactic not used in nearly a century: the “cordon sanitaire,” in which a line is drawn around the infected area and no one is allowed out. And most worryingly, Reuters reports that a nurse who had close contact with a Liberian Ebola patient skipped quarantine in Lagos and went to her home in the eastern city of Enugu, where she made contact with 20 other people.

 
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Obama Plans "Non-Boots-On-The-Ground Humanitarian-Adviser-Marines-Led" Yezidi Rescue Mission In Iraq





Last night we nearly exploded when the adminstration tried to explain how the 130 Marines (military advisers) were non-combat troop 'boots-on-the-ground' in Iraq. Today, the State Department, Pentagon, and White House are all out with mind-numbing propaganda to reassure an anxious America that a planned rescue mission of 'thousands' of Yezidi will be entirely supported by non-combat troops.

 
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Brazilian Presidential Candidate Dies In Jet Crash





UPDATE: *BRAZIL PRES. CANDIDATE CAMPOS DIES IN PLANE CRASH: GLOBONEWS

Brazil's stock market is reeling this morning as rumors and now news hit that Brazilian Presidential candidate Eduardo Campos was on board a private jet that crashed in the city of Santos. Polls had put Mr. Campos head-to-head with Ms. Rousseff (but behind Ms. Silva). A police official in Santos said there were "certainly" fatalities in the crash, but could not say how many or provide any additional information. Campos had run on a platform of less government intervention and proposed a bill to ensure central bank indpendence.

 
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ISIS Now A Commodity "Trading" Powerhouse: Islamic States Steals Iraq's Grain Then Sells It Back To Iraq Government





A strategy so brilliant Goldman is wondering how it didn't think of it first...

 
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New “London Silver Price” Launching In Just Two Days - Confusion Reigns





Interestingly, the FT also reports that there may be significant buying of silver in the coming days: Indeed, there are already rumours in the market place that some big silver producers and consumers are preparing to pepper the market with orders.” This creates the possibility of the short squeeze that many market participants and silver analysts have been expecting for some time.

 
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Ukraine Slams "Provocation By A Cynical Aggressor", Refuses Russian Convoy Entry





With the Russian humanitarian convoy approaching the Ukraine border, there was much confusion yesterday whether Kiev would or wouldn't allow the roughly 280 trucks carrying "stuff" to enter its territory. The confusion rose yesterday afternoon when Russia's Lavrov told reporters in Sochi that Russia, after it asked for Germany's aid in getting Kiev to agree, received Ukraine’s permission for the convoy to enter after agreeing to Ukraine’s proposed route, agreeing that the convoy trucks will carry Ukrainian license plates, and complying with Ukraine’s demand for Ukrainian govt representatives to be on trucks. Turns out Ukraine was just kidding, and as Reuters reports this morning, the Kiev government once again denounced the dispatch of a Russian humanitarian aid convoy to eastern Ukraine as an act of Russian cynicism on Wednesday and said it would not be allowed in.

 
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Frontrunning: August 13





  • Obama says Missouri shooting death tragic, reflection needed (Reuters)
  • U.S. Weighs Iraq Rescue Mission to Save Yazidis (WSJ)
  • Maliki says Abadi's appointment as Iraqi PM 'has no value' (Reuters)
  • Iran Joins U.S. in Backing Replacement for Iraq’s Maliki (BBG)
  • Kurds Push Attack in North Iraq as Maliki Clings to Power (BBG)
  • Obama Donors Embrace Corporate Inversions He Criticizes (BBG)
  • Syrian Forces Advance on Aleppo, Rebels Fear Another Siege (WSJ)
  • Israel, Palestinians pursue Gaza deal with ceasefire clock ticking (Reuters)
  • Ebola Drug’s Success Bolsters Approach for Other Diseases (BBG)
  • With Natural Gas Byproduct, Iran Sidesteps Sanctions (NYT)
  • Kazakhs to Hoard Food as Putin Sanctions Rattle Alliance (BBG)
 
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Just The Right Amount Of Bad Overnight News To Ramp Global Equities





If it was crashing German business confidence yesterday setting the somber mood for European economic "growth" in the second half, with a European GDP decline if not outright contraction now almost practically inevitable, then overnight it was disappointing data from virtually every other spot in the globe (and Europe again) to hammer the message in, starting with a historic 6.8% drop in Japanese GDP driven by a record plunge in consumption, quickly followed by total social financing out of China which in aggregate rose by only RMB273.1bn in July, or just 18% of what was expected, with missing industrial production and retail sales just the cherry on top. Then it was Europe's turn again, where June Industrial Production contracted -0.3% on expectations of a 0.4% increase, to set the stage for tomorrow's Eurozone GDP print which, following Italy's triple-drip recession shocker last week, probably means it will be not only Japan but also Europe which are about to have taken a sharp move for the worse. All of which of course, explains why just as Europe opened, the USDJPY blasted off and took both EuroSTOXX and US equity futures higher with it, and at last check ES was some 10 higher.

 
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ISIS And The Coming Escalation In Iraq





ISIS has attracted an entire generation of radicalized Sunni militants to the region. If one watches interviews with their enemies such as e.g. Peshmerga fighters, one topic that is occasionally mentioned is that they don't seem to fear death much. Combined with their well-known brutality, this undoubteldy makes them a formidable fighting force. However, there is evidently far more to ISIS than that. All of the above suggests that it will be exceedingly difficult to effectively destroy ISIS. It seems to us that if the goals the president has announced in recent days are to be achieved, nothing short of a full-scale invasion of Iraq (as well as of Syria for good measure) is likely to suffice – and even then, success is by no means guaranteed.

 
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Fed Vice Chair Fischer On U.S. Bailin "Proposals"





Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer delivered his first speech on the global economy in Stockholm, Sweden yesterday. Fischer headed Israel’s central bank from 2005 through 2013 and is now number two at the Federal Reserve in the U.S. after Janet Yellen. Fischer’s comments that the U.S. is “preparing a proposal” for bail-ins is at odds with FDIC and Bank of England officials who have said that bail-in legislation could be used today and "I mean today ... "

 
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Frontrunning: August 12





  • Gunshots, tear gas in riots over shooting of black Missouri teen (Reuters)
  • Russia sends big aid convoy to Ukraine, West sounds warnings (Reuters)
  • Maliki Bid to Block Successor Escalates Crisis in Iraq (BBG)
  • Poor German data pushes euro toward 9-month lows against dollar (Reuters)
  • Derivatives Reincarnate Boosting Debt Wagers in New Era  (BBG)
  • Israel Says No Gaza Talks Progress as Hamas Warns on Truce (BBG)
  • Traders brace for research crackdown as easy money dries up (Reuters)
  • U.S. Bank Profits Near Record Levels (WSJ)
  • Unproven Ebola Drugs Are Ethical to Use in Outbreak: WHO (BBG)
  • Caesars’ CEO Loveman Says No Qualified Bidders for Revel (BBG)
 
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Obama On The "Sacrifice" Of "No Vacations" In His Own Words





"You give me this office, and in turn, my fears, doubts, insecurities, foibles, need for sleep, family life, vacations, leisure is gone. I am giving myself to you. The American people should have no patience for whatever is going through your head because you have a job to do. You don't make that decision unless you are prepared to make that sacrifice, that tradeoff. Those who make mistakes in the president's office make them because they haven't fully thought through the dimensions of that choice."

- Barack Hussein Obama

 
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Putin Defies Western Warning, Will Send "Aid Convoy" To East Ukraine





This may get messy. Following days of loud warnings by the West that Putin should not take any moves to send "humanitarian" aid into East Ukraine, due to western fears that this would be merely a pretext for invasion, Putin said on Monday that Russia will go ahead and send an aid convoy to eastern Ukraine anyway.

 
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Is Anyone In Control? The Iraq "Post Coup" Confusion Deepens





While the US is alternating between bombing the north of Iraq, and occasionally paradropping MREs and jugs of water to keep up the "noble" facade of intervention, it is very much unclear if Iraq currently has a government and in fact, who is in charge. As reported yesterday, current PM al-Maliki, seemingly unhappy with relinquishing power when a new Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi was chosen, decided to conduct what many described as a military coup and encircled the residence of the president. Since then things have gotten quite confusing.

 
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