In Japan, the European Union and Switzerland, where negative nominal interest rates have already been adopted, it was observed that demand for safes and cash increased. At the same time, we learn that negative rates have boosted demand for gold in Japan (sales of gold to Japanese consumers rose to 32.8 metric tonnes in 2015 from 17.9 tonnes a year earlier). According to Takahiro Ito, chief manager at Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo K.K.’s store in Tokyo’s Ginza shopping district, “Many customers are wagering that it’s better to turn their savings to gold as a safe asset rather than deposit money at banks that offer low interest rates."
For those who thought that the world's biggest company losing over $40 billion in market cap in an instant on disappointing Apple earnings, would have been sufficient to put a dent in US equity futures, we have some disappointing news: with just over 7 hours until the FOMC reveals its April statement, futures are practically unchanged, even though the Nasdaq appears set for an early bruising in the aftermath of what is becoming a disturbing quarter for tech companies. Instead of tech leading, however, the upside has once again come from the energy complex where moments ago WTI rose above $45 a barrel for the first time since November after yesterday's unexpected 1.07 million barrel API inventory drawdown.
what until now was merely a terrible start to the year has turned absolutely brutal for Odey's European fund, which is now down nearly a third, or 31%, in the first four months of the year, wiping out almost half a decade of trading profits in his flagship hedge fund in less than four months. Is he ready to throw in the towel? Not even close: the billionaire who delights in fighting the Fed, is convinced he will have the last laugh: "The disconnect between travelling and arriving may be coming home to roost. It will make the retreat from Moscow appear painless."
Sterling fell 20% on BREXIT concerns and the euro fell 11% against gold. Canadian dollar fell 10%, Aussie dollar fell 9% & Swiss franc fell 12% against gold
While Forex banks, traders, and other institutions are being blamed for market rigging, the Swiss National Bank can publish reports about its own market rigging, but instead of being a scandal, it's economic data. That's because the vast majority don't understand how the Forex markets work. It's not insulting - it's a fact. Currently there are hundreds of pending litigation cases against a plethora of Forex banks, traders, and other institutions - but none against a central bank.
Todays “Chart of the Day” from The Economist makes an attempt to show that gold isn’t doing any better when it comes to preserving buying power than currencies such as the Swiss Franc (CHF) or the Japanese Yen (JPY). Roy Sebag, co-founder of BitGold and CEO of GoldMoney, took the liberty to point out the obvious (and many) flaws in their chart (see his comments below):
There are times you try to connect the dots. There are others where those connections warrant adorning your trusted tin-foiled cap of choice; for you just can’t get there unless you do. This I believe is one of those times. And if correct? What at first might appear apocryphal, may in fact, be down right apocalyptic. And besides, what good is a tin-foil capped conspiracy theory anyhow if it doesn’t have the potential for doom, correct? The implications for everything we now take for granted such as: money, enterprise, global commerce, and a whole lot more may be far closer to a “Minsky moment” than any of us dared to imagine.
Brunner and Brandberg maintain that the tendency in the EU and in OECD member countries is to “weaken individual liberties” and to exercise greater control over citizens. In this context "cash is comparable to the service firearm kept by Swiss citizen soldiers," the pair argued in their motion, saying they both “guarantee freedom.” The move toward electronic payments allows governments "total surveillance" over individuals, the pair claim.
"The Chinese market didn’t react as bad as we feared and with the weak export data there is some big hope that he central banks will react quite fast," John Plassard, senior equity-sales trader at Mirabaud Securities LLP in Geneva, told Bloomberg. "It’s a mix of hope of intervention from the Asian central bank, short squeeze and also a relief in some energy and banking sectors, the most shorted sectors." And there are your catalysts for today's surge: hope of more central bank intervention and a global short squeeze.
In a year in which AAPL not only entered a bear market, but dropped to multi-year lows, the SNB almost doubled its total AAPL holdings, which as of December 31, 2015 amounted to 10.4 million shares, up from 5.6 million a year earlier
When people lose everything and they have nothing to lose, they “lose it.”
With the biggest drop in 3 months, EURCHF has broken above last September's highs, plunging below 1.06. Amid chatter of SNB intervention, this is the weakest Swissy has been since the removal of the ceiling a year ago.
What will bring down the Chinese and Saudi pegs, along with a long list of other pegs, is, how appropriately, the very same markets they’ve been relying on to NOT function. The bets against Hong Kong’s ability to maintain its USD peg have already started, and China is next, along with the House of Saud (the latter two just take more fire-power). Which of course is exactly why they speak their soothing ‘confident’ words. Words that are today interpreted as the very sign of weakness they’re meant to circumvent.
S&P's Downgrade (By A German Analyst) Is A "Politically-Motivated" Decision Aimed At Polish AuthoritiesSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 01/19/2016 13:50 -0400
The Standard and Poor’s rating agency, notorious for its controversial assessments, has this time bashed Poland in the wake of the anti-Polish frenzy whipped up by the European media. To be more precise, Poland was assailed by a German S&P analyst who lowered Poland’s rating from A- to BBB+, despite the economic data that by no means warrant such an evaluation.
Gold retains a key role of a major diversifier in well-structured retail investment and pension portfolios ... core defensive and hedging properties vis-à-vis global currencies and fixed income, as well as oil and a range of other commodities.