Massive capital outflows from China in an effort to preserve capital is something that we've covered extensively in the past (here and here for example). Last month, China's Ministry of Commerce (MOC) came out to do some damage control, and downplayed the extent of the activity. It also hinted that the government would "help" Chinese companies with overseas M&A in the future...
In a surprising development, the U.S. monthly international trade deficit decreased substantially in March 2016 from $47.0 billion in February (revised) to $40.4 billion in March, below the $41.2 billion expected, as exports declined by a modest $1.5 billion, a 0.9% drop to $176.62BN from $178.16BN in Feb. At the same time imports outright plunged by $8.1 billion, down 3.6% in March to $217.06BN from $225.13BN in Feb. Curiously this happened just as Canada announced a trade deficit of C$3.4 billion, the widest on record. In March, the US trade deficit excluding petroleum was $37.48 billion.
Who could have seen that coming? It appears President Obama's ill-advised Op-Ed and visit to The United Kingdom, exhorting his "friends" to 'just say no' to Brexit and vote democratically to stay part of an undemocratic superstate, has backfired for the establishment. A poll by YouGov suggests that Obama's high profile intervention in the UK's EU Referendum failed with 65% of Brits seeing his comments were not "appropriate."
One of the more egregious examples in recent history of "nickel and diming" one's clients was revealed today when Massachusetts' top securities regulator alleged a unit of custody bank State Street routinely overbilled customers for items such as messaging services, even as an executive worried one client might "discover that we are taking them to the cleaners."
Europe looks like a dying civilization. European political leaders know that every decision they make may provoke reactions among the Muslims living in Europe. Muslim votes matter. Riots occur easily. In France, Belgium, other European countries, Islamists are present in the army and police forces. In the meantime, Islamist organizations recruit and Islamic lobbies gain ground. European governments are now hostages. The European media are also hostages. Political movements expressing anger and concerns are rising. All are demonized by political power holders and the media. They have almost no chance of gaining more influence. Populations are gnawed by fear, frustration and impotence.
Hungary priced the three-year bond at a yield of 6.25%, raising 1 billion yuan ($154 million), a small size for a sovereign deal. Bankers not involved in the transaction estimate that if Hungary issued debt in U.S. dollars and swapped the proceeds into yuan, it would have paid almost 1% less in annual interest costs. The dim-sum market isn’t an appealing market right now. Issuance of offshore yuan bonds has been falling consistently since Beijing’s decision to devalue its currency by 2% in August last year—the prospect of another yuan devaluation has sapped much of the appeal of such bonds for offshore investors.
On Sunday Ukrainian prime minister Yatsenyuk resigned, just four days after the Dutch voted against Ukraine joining the European Union. Taken together, these two events are clear signals that the US-backed coup in Ukraine has not given that country freedom and democracy. They also suggest a deeper dissatisfaction among Europeans over Washington’s addiction to interventionism.
"I have spent years discoursing on the defects of the Capitalist system. I do not withdraw those criticisms. But we have seen the two systems side by side. And the man who would still argue for socialism as the means of ridding our society of the defects of capitalism is blind indeed. Socialism just does not work."
The outcome of a non-binding Dutch referendum on broader European Union ties with Ukraine was too close to call on Wednesday, with a vital turnout threshold hanging in the balance, exit polls showed. The vote, launched by anti-EU forces, is seen as test of the strength of eurosceptics on the continent just three months before Britain votes on whether to stay in the European Union.
The era of top-down political operations is ending. Mass membership, open, accessible political movements are the future. Membership structures that are low-cost but allow involvement for those wishing to participate from the comfort of their own homes is where politics is headed, engaging an entirely new section of the population who have been left behind by the distant, remote current political structures.
An unprecedented leak of more than 11 million documents has revealed the hidden financial dealings of some of the world's wealthiest people, as well as 12 current and former world leaders and 128 more politicians and public officials around the world. The data allows a never-before-seen view inside the offshore world — providing a day-to-day, decade-by-decade look at how dark money flows through the global financial system, breeding crime and stripping national treasuries of tax revenues.