Unemployment

Case-Shiller Home Price Rise Beats Expectations By Most In 2 Years

Following February's disappointing slowdown in home price appreciation, March's S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City home price index stabilized, rising 5.43% YoY (beating 5.16% expectations by the most in 2 years). However, the national home price index slowed further from 5.32% YoY in Feb to 5.15% YoY in March with Seattle, San Francisco, and Denver seeing the greatest monthly increases.

Futures Flat, Gold Rises On Weaker Dollar As Traders Focus On OPEC, Payrolls

After yesterday's US and UK market holidays which resulted in a session of unchanged global stocks, US futures are largely where they left off Friday, up fractionally, and just under 2,100. Bonds fell as the Federal Reserve moves closer to raising interest rates amid signs inflation is picking up. Oil headed for its longest run of monthly gains in five years, while stocks declined in Europe.

Why This Friday's Payrolls Report Could See A Big Miss

When the main economic event this week hits this Friday at 8:30 am EDT, when the BLS releases the May payrolls report, Wall Street consensus wil be expecting a 160,000 print, a number which will have a big impact on market expectations for a Fed rate hike at the June or July FOMC meeting. However, consensus may be disappointed for one reason: the Verizon strike could chop off as much as 35,000 workers from the headline payrolls print.

The Source of Failure: We Optimize What We Measure

The problems we face cannot be fixed with policy tweaks and minor reforms. Yet policy tweaks and minor reforms are all we can manage when the pie is shrinking and every vested interest is fighting to maintain their share of the pie. Our failure stems from a much deeper problem: we optimize what we measure. If we measure the wrong things, and focus on measuring process rather than outcome, we end up with precisely what we have now: a set of perverse incentives that encourage self-destructive behaviors and policies.

Sweden: Is Islam Compatible With Democracy?

It is not a secret that democracy can be used to abolish democracy. It may have finally begun to dawn on the people that Swedish Sweden will soon be lost forever, and in many areas replaced by a Middle Eastern state of affairs, where different immigrant groups (mainly Muslims) make war on each other as well as on the Swedes. There is no country where Islam is dominant that can be considered a democracy with freedom of speech and equal justice under law.

The Task Confronting Libertarians

If libertarians lose on the inflation issue, they are threatened with the loss of every other issue. If libertarians could win the inflation issue, they could come close to winning everything else. If they could succeed in halting the increase in the quantity of money, it would be because they could halt the chronic deficits that force this increase. If they could halt these chronic deficits, it would be because they had halted the rapid increase in welfare spending and all the socialistic schemes that are dependent on welfare spending. If they could halt the constant increase in spending, they could halt the constant increase in government power.

In Stunning Reversal, IMF Blames Globalization For Spreading Inequality, Causing Market Crashes

In a stunning reversal for an organization that rests at the bedrock of the modern "neoliberal" (a term the IMF itself uses generously), aka capitalist system, overnight IMF authors Jonathan D. Ostry, Prakash Loungani, and Davide Furceri issued a research paper titled "Neoliberalism: Oversold?" whose theme is a stunning one: it accuses neoliberalism, and its immediate offshoot, globalization and "financial openness", for causing not only inequality, but also making capital markets unstable.

BTFVIX?

With Goldman suggesting VIX should be in the upper teens based on 'fundamentals' and event risks galore on the horizon (FOMC, Brexit, Spain elections, US elections, etc.) Geneva Swiss Bank suggests it is time to BTFVIX...

Gundlach Predicts Yellen Will Be Dovish Today; Is "Quite Sure" Oil Prices Are Going Down Again

With verious Fed presidents having whipping up the market into a hawkish frenzy in the past two weeks, leading to a dramatic repricing in summer rate hike odds with expectations for a July rate hike now over 50%, many can be "disappointed" by Yellen's speech today, at least according to Jeff Gundlach who said Yellen appears to be more cautious on raising interest rates and he expects her comments to be dovish again on Friday, when she is scheduled to speak at an event in Harvard-Radcliffe.

Peak Petro-State - The Oil World In Chaos

Pity the poor petro-states. Once so wealthy from oil sales that they could finance wars, mega-projects, and domestic social peace simultaneously, some of them are now beset by internal strife or are on the brink of collapse as oil prices remain at ruinously low levels. At the peak of their glory, the petro-states played an outsized role in world affairs.  That, of course, was then, and this is now. While these countries still matter, what worries these presidents and prime ministers now is the growing likelihood of civil violence or even state collapse.

A Spirit Of Violence And Civil Unrest Is Rising In America

It was only a matter of time before our deeply divided nation was going to start coming apart at the seams.  Waves of anger, frustration, violence and civil unrest are starting to sweep across the United States, and political rallies for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump have become a focal point for releasing some of that energy.  The angry mob that threw rocks, bottles and burning T-shirts at police and Donald Trump supporters on Tuesday night wanted to get the attention of the national media, and they got it in droves.  Now that the election is less than five months away, this kind of scene is going to be repeated over and over, and this is something that we warned about back in MarchMillions upon millions of our young people have fully embraced the radical left, and they have already made it exceedingly clear that they are not afraid to use violence to advance their cause.

Hard Times And False Narratives

The mainstream media mouthpieces for the establishment peddle false narratives, disingenuous storylines, and outright propaganda to keep the ignorant masses confused, oblivious to reality, misinformed, and passively submissive to the opinions of highly paid “experts” and captured fiscal authorities. We are living in hard times. The reason tens of millions of Americans are rejecting the establishment and voting for Trump and Sanders is because of economic hardship. Most Americans have been screwed over by the system and are finally getting fed up. They aren’t exactly sure who screwed them, how they were screwed, or how to stop getting screwed, but they are angry. And someone is going to pay. The status quo is beginning to get nervous. Their usual propaganda, scare tactics and misinformation campaigns don’t seem to be working.

Monetary Lunacy: The ECB Could End Up Funding Bayer's Purchase Of Monsanto

Today we find an even more striking example of just how broken the global bond market has become thanks to the ECB because as Reuters writes, Bayer could receive financing from none other than the European Central Bank to help fund its takeover of the world's largest seed company, US-based Monsanto, according to the terms of the ECB's bond-buying program.

Switzerland Prepares To Vote On "Free Lunch" For Everyone

In early June the Swiss will be called upon to make a historic decision. Switzerland is the first country worldwide to put the idea of an Unconditional Basic Income (of $2,500 per month for every man, woman, and child for doing absolutely nothing) to a vote and the outcome of this referendum will set a strong precedent and establish a landmark in the evolution of this debate. The main argument of the supporters of this initiative is that it would support the people that will, or already do, lose their jobs to automation and technological progress; a defensive move against “the rise of the robots” as they put it. The promise of a free lunch is by no means a new thing in politics. Getting “something for nothing” is an age-old shiny trinket that has been dangled before the eyes of the public since time immemorial...but at the end of day, someone will have to pay for it.