Too Big To Fail

Why Negative Rates Are Positive For Gold

In the first 14 weeks of the New Year, gold rose 16%. The first quarter qualified as its best beginning year performance in 30 years (CNBC, E. Rosenbaum, 4/14/16). The reversal was prompted by stumbling stock markets and a series of sharply dovish turns from central banks around the world. Perhaps the main reason people buy gold is as a hedge against inflation. But uncertainty and fear contributed undoubtedly to gold’s stellar first quarter rise. But will it continue?

The Scourge Of Socialism

Human progress has been three steps forward, two steps back. That a non-fringe candidate of a major political party in the United States can call himself a socialist constitutes a leap backward. That it can happen after a century of socialistic horrors: impoverishment, ruination, tyranny, war, and tens of millions dead, bespeaks not just deadly ignorance and delusion, but depravity.

Federal Regulators Accuse Banks Of Not Having Credible Crisis Plans, Would Need Another Bailout

We were not surprised to read this morning that federal regulators announced that five out of eight of the biggest U.S. banks do not have credible plans for winding down operations during a crisis without the help of public money. Which is precisely the point: now that the precedent has been set and banks know they can rely on the generosity of taxpayers (with the blessing of legislators) why should they even bother planning; they know very well that if just one bank fails, all would face collapse, and the only recourse would be trillions more in taxpayer aid.

Italy Seeks "Last Resort" Bailout Fund To "Ringfence" Troubled Banks, Meeting Monday

Italy is the “too big to fail”, “elephant in the room”. Should Italy try Austria’s solution, it presumably would cause a “chain reaction with ripple effects that would be felt across the European banking system.” Instead, officials will attempt to “ringfence” the problem, hoping to “sweep it under the rug” where presumably a “€360bn pile of non-performing loans” will cure itself, eliminating the need for additional bail-ins

The Future of Money

The reason is that banks understand their core reason to exist is threatened by peer-to-peer, decentralized payment platforms and currencies. If payments no longer need to be routed through a centralized trusted institution, then one core function of banks disappears. If peer-to-peer lending and securitization becomes easier and cheaper due to the blockchain, then banks' function of allocating capital also vanishes.

Frontrunning: April 1

  • Saudi Arabia Will Only Freeze Oil Production If Iran Joins (BBG)
  • Japanese gloom ensures slow start to quarter for world stocks (Reuters)
  • Saudi Arabia Plans $2 Trillion Megafund for Post-Oil Era (BBG)
  • Prices Sag in Warning to ECB Even as Manufacturing Picks Up (BBG)
  • China factories scent hint of spring, Europe still chilly (Reuters)
  • Theranos Devices Often Failed Accuracy Requirements (WSJ)

Frontrunning: March 31

  • Roller-coaster first quarter ends with shares, dollar under pressure (Reuters)
  • Oil prices slide as U.S. crude stocks hit record (Reuters)
  • GE Files to End Fed Oversight After Shrinking GE Capital (WSJ)
  • FDA Eases Rules for Abortion Pill, Making Access Simpler (BBG)
  • Kremlin denies report of Russia-U.S. deal on Assad's future (Reuters)
  • Thirst for Gasoline Fuels Oil Rally (WSJ)
  • Landlords in last-minute rush to beat stamp duty rises (BBG)

"Voting For President Is Like Picking-Out Which Gun You Wanna Get Shot With"

“Nobody for President. That’s my campaign slogan. We got money for wars but can’t feed our homeless. The government is hopeless. It’s like a reality show. The Real lives of the House Liars... all this pageantry is just designed for fools. They gonna give you the one they choose. Too big to fail, too rich to lose. And I’m still too broke to vote."

What’s The Frequency Janet?

To now dismiss Fed policy causation as “correlation theory” is laughable. The markets are now so intertwined and Fed dependent the observation of whether correlation is causality has been rendered moot. Without the Fed – there is no market. That’s now a proven fact. Period.