“The way to wealth in a bull market is debt. The way to oblivion in a bear market is also debt, and nobody rings a bell.” – James Grant
What does China's "surprise" move to devalue the yuan mean for "broken" EM currencies? Nothing good, Morgan Stanley says. In short, the path ahead is riddled with exported deflation and decreased trade competitiveness against a backdrop of declining global growth and trade.
When China went the "nuclear" devaluation route earlier this week, everyone knew things were about to get a whole lot worse for an EM currency basket that was already reeling from plunging commodity prices, slumping Chinese demand, and the threat of an imminent Fed hike. With some Asian currencies already falling to levels last seen 17 years ago, some analysts fear that an Asian Financial Crisis 2.0 may be just around the corner. That rather dire prediction may have been validated on Friday when Malaysia’s ringgit registered its largest one-day loss in almost two decades, as stocks plunged and bond yields rose.
The last three times Asian currencies collapsed against the US Dollar at this rate, the global financial system was shaken to the core. With China piling on this time, we wonder - what happens next, as a tsunami of deflation is exported towards the shores of the "we'll hike no matter what" Fed's American shores...
In some ways the question is not whether the renminbi is competitive or uncompetitive. The problem is that the renminbi is unambiguously less competitive than it was. This comes at a time when the Chinese economy is struggling and the stock market bubble is bursting. To all but the most PollyAnna’ish of observers that means this is the start of a major renminbi devaluation forcing the US to import even more of the world’s unwanted deflation.... Prepare for sub-1% 10y Treasury yields and another financial crisis as policy impotence is soon revealed to all.
China has officially gone the "nuclear" route, SocGen says, and the read through for the global economy is not good. Here's how to profit going forward...
As we first warned in March, and as became abundantly clear over the weekend Beijing had no choice but to join the global currency wars, as the yuan's dollar peg will ultimately prove to be too painful going forward. And sure enough this evening the PBOC weakens the Yuan fix by the most on record.
It appears - according to the narrative assigned by the mainstream media - that any weakness in asset prices should be bought because China will inevitably have to unleash pure QE (as opposed to the modestly watered down version currently underway) or some combination of RRR cuts. This is 'western' thinking as the go to policy of the rest of the world's central banks has been - put on pants, print money, paper over cracks, proclaim victory. However, in China there is one big problem with this... stoking inflation... and most crucially the social unrest concerns when suddenly a nation of newly minted equity losers can no longer afford their pork (which is facing record shortages)...
Wondering why stocks are surging this morning - aside from Fischer's comments, OPEC rumors, Greek bank recaps, and JPY ignition? Perhaps it is the veritable swarm of professional technical analysts out with notes warning of significant problems ahead. From John Hussman's refined Hindenberg Omen and Carter Worth's "sell stocks, breadth is a problem," to Oppenheimer's warning of "seasonals and weak internals," and Louise Yamada's "stocks are vulnerable, keep cash on sidelines" warning - it appears today's early bounce is as much about contrarian oversold bounce as it is about any macro news. But with 73% of the largest 1000 stocks at least 5% off their highs, stocks remain fragile as they push back towards highs.
Futures Rebound On Ongoing Dollar Strength; Commodities Rise, China Slides, Greek Banks Continue PlungingSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 08/05/2015 06:51 -0400
In many ways the overnight session has been a mirror image of yesterday, with the dollar accelerating its Lockhart-commentary driven rise, which curiously has pushed ES higher perhaps as a result of more USDJPY correlation algos being active and various other FX tracking pairs. Indeed, the weak yen is all that mattered in Japan, where the Nikkei 225 (+0.5%) rose amid JPY weakness, despite opening initially lower as index heavyweight Fast Retailing (-4.5%) reported a 2nd consecutive monthly decline in Uniqlo sales. Elsewhere in mirror images, China slid 1.7%, undoing about half of yesterday's 3.7% jump, and is now down for 4 of the past 5 days.
"The Virtuous Emerging Market Cycle Is Turning Vicious" Albert Edwards Remembers The 1997 Asian CrisisSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/30/2015 13:52 -0400
Given that some two-thirds of Wall Street traders have never experienced a Fed tightening cycle, SocGen's Albert Edwards is not surprised he gets blank looks when he tries to explain how recent events in commodity and EM markets are in many key (worying) ways similar to the 1997 Asian crisis.
"Hillary Clinton will propose a revamp of capital-gains taxes that would hit some short-term investors with higher rates, part of a package of measures designed to prod companies to put more emphasis on long-term growth," WSJ reports. Interested to know who might be pulling the strings behind the scenes? Read on...
"If in the short run, to paraphrase Benjamin Graham, equities are a voting machine, then it seems many of these votes are being coerced by interventionists.Central bankers the world over have become obsessed with asset prices, to the extent that the notion of central banks making outright purchases of equities is no longer confined to the lunatic fringe."
Is China (or the US) the next Greece?
Earlier today we commented that while stock markets across the globe, heavily influenced by central bank intervention from the PBOC to the SNB, are doing everything in the central planners' power to telegraph just how irrelevant Greece is, other indicators are far less sanguine. One example was copper, which plunged to a level not seen since February, and was in danger of breaching its 15 year support level. The commodity weakness today has persisted and is now crushing both WTI crude and Brent, both of which are in freefall, and WTI is now down over $3 on the session, or 6%, to a $53 handle, the biggest one day plunge since February to a level last seen in early April when there was much hope that the dramatic plunge in December and January was finally over. Turns out it wasn't.