SWIFT

Doug Casey Has "Never Seen Anything Like This"

"What's going on in the US now is a culture clash. They don't just dislike each other and disagree on politics; they can no longer even have a conversation. They hate each other on a visceral gut level. They have totally different world views. I've never seen anything like this in my lifetime. There hasn't been anything like this since the War Between the States, which shouldn't be called "The Civil War," because it wasn't a civil war. "

U.S. Prepping Case Linking North Korea To $81MM New York Fed Bank Heist

As tensions between the U.S and North Korea continue to escalate, with the most recent provacation coming from Kim Jong Un just last night, the Wall Street Journal has just reported that Federal prosecutors are building potential cases that would accuse North Korea of directing the theft of $81 million from Bangladesh’s account at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York last year.

Apple Launches Red iPhone 7, Introduces New iPad

As previewed last week, moments ago Apple has introduced a 9.7-inch iPad with Retina display, starting at $329. Today AAPL also announces red edition of iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus to mark more than 10 years of partnership between Apple and HIV/AIDS charity.

Abe School Scandal Set For Major Escalation After Donation Receipt Emerges

The Mainichi Shimbun has obtained a copy of a receipt for a deposit of 1 million yen that scandal-hit Moritomo Gakuen claims to have been donated by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's wife Akie Abe, jeopardizing Abe's official denial of involvement,  further eroding Abe's credibility and support, and potentially culminating with Abe's resignation.

China Unexpectedly Tightens Monetary Policy

Following The Fed's 3rd rate hike in 11 years, the PBOC decided, unexpectedly, to follow in the Fed's footsteps, and tighten conditions by raising the interest rates on its open-market operations, the 7-, 14-, and 28-day reverse-repos, by 10bps each, to 2.45%, 2.6% and 2.75% respectively.

"Anything Can Happen" - Is Now The Time To 'Fade The Fed'?

"...don’t misconstrue this statement as a forecast the Fed will not hike next week. A March hike is by far and away the most probable outcome. Yet, the risk reward from a long position in the April expiry still makes sense."

Frontrunning: March 8

  • GOP Disagrees on How—and Whether—to Pay for Tax Cuts (WSJ)
  • 'It's like kumbaya:' Trump's genial private meetings with CEOs jar with public attacks (Reuters)
  • New Health Plan Sparks Debate Over Obamacare Comparisons (WSJ)
  • China Grants Preliminary Approval to 38 New Trump Trademarks (BBG)
  • Questions About Loyalty to Trump Stall Treasury Picks (BBG)
  • Women in U.S. plan to stay off the job, rally in anti-Trump protests (Reuters)

US Begins Deployment Of Controversial THAAD Anti-Missile System To South Korea

Well that escalated quickly. Just a day after North Korea's test firing of 4 missiles towards US bases in Japan, and hours after North Korea warned the world was "on the brink of nuclear war" due to US-South Korea "maneuvers," CNN reports the first pieces of the controversial US-built missile defense system (designed to mitigate the threat of North Korean missiles) arrived at the Osan Air Base in South Korea Monday night, according to the US military.

Trump Proposes Cutting State Department Budget By 37%

The White House is proposing to cut spending by 37% for the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development budget, in order to free up some of the billions in funding Trump has promised the Defense department.