Swiss Franc

S&P Enters The Latest European Scandal: Downgrades Poland From A- To BBB+

As so often happens, whenever there is a political spat in Europe, the rating agencies are quickly involved (thing S&P and Moody's downgrades and upgrades of Greece depending on how well the vassal nation is "behaving"), and moments ago S&P downgraded Poland from A- to BBB+ outlook negative, precisely due to Poland's new media law which has been the topic of so much consternation over the past week. In other words, S&P is now nothing more than a lackey for Brussels, threatening to send Polish yields higher if Poland does not fall in line.

You Know Negative Interest Rates Are Bad When...

...the Swiss canton of Zug is asking its citizens to delay paying their taxes for as long as possible, because the cantonal government doesn’t want to take in a pile of cash, only to end up paying the bank interest on all the tax revenue.

The Hedge Fund Known As The Swiss National Bank Posts A Record $23 Billion Loss, Down 4%, On EUR, AAPL, VRX

In a year in which the smartest money around the world failed to generate any profit, the hedge fund known as the SNB was likewise slammed, and earlier today, it announced in a preliminary report (the full results will be out on March 4) that it had suffered a CHF23 billion ($23.05 billion) loss in the past year, or about 4% of its assets under management. In retrospect, considering some of the double-digit losses recorded by the marquee hedge fund names, a 4% loss looks downright respectable by funds who "hedge" only in name.

It's Official: Bitcoin Was The Top Performing Currency Of 2015

For most investors, the major story of 2015 was the expectation and eventual fulfillment of a rate hike, signalling the start of tightening monetary policy in the United States. This policy is divergent to those of other major central banks, and this has translated into considerable strength and momentum for the U.S. dollar. Despite this strength, the best performing currency in 2015 was not the dollar. In fact, the top currency of 2015 is likely to be considered the furthest thing from the greenback.

In The "Year When Nothing Worked", This Handful Of Traders Made Billions

While most hedge funds will be glad to close the books on a year in which they once again dramatically underperformed a market which hugged the flatline courtesy of just a few stocks (even as most stocks posted substantial declines) and where "hedge fund hotels" such as Valeant suffered dramatic implosions, a handful of traders generated impressive returns for their investors and made billions by going against the herd.

"Hollow Markets"

...and a trader who doesn’t pay attention to the modern realities of market structure and liquidity provision is not long for this world.