• Monetary Metals
    08/03/2015 - 04:03
    You cannot understand gold if you think it goes up and down, that the dollar is the measure of gold. Gold does not necessarily go up with interest, inflation, or commodities. Indeed, it does not...
  • Tim Knight from...
    08/03/2015 - 00:54
    Could you imagine making a sweeping prediction about the world's construct in the year 2120 and being more or less correct?

Volatility

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Frontrunning: August 3





  • Deadline Draws Near for Puerto Rico (WSJ)
  • U.S. to defend Syrian rebels with airpower, including from Assad (Reuters)
  • Alpha Natural Resources to Seek Chapter 11 (WSJ)
  • Iran’s Rouhani Says Nuclear Deal ‘More Than What Was Imagined’ (BBG)
  • Cables Show Hillary Clinton's State Department Deeply Involved in Trans-Pacific Partnership (IBTimes)
  • Win or Lose, U.S. Stocks Get Biggest Earnings Bang Since ’12 (BBG)
  • Weaker China factories argue for more policy support as stocks swoon (Reuters)
 
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Is This The Most Successful Trade Of The Last Decade?





If the longs use VIX products as hedging instruments, then why would anyone take the other side? Because, being short volatility can be very profitable, according to Goldman. Year-to-date this short vol index is up 56%, and selling the front-month VIX has earned a massive 114 vol points... The introduction of weekly VIX futures (and the exponential decay implied by these volatility-inducing instruments) offers, according to Goldman Sachs, even more opportunity for active risk takers to sell vol, scrape premium, and face unlimited downside risk... playing the contango collapse game until there are no more musical chairs left.

 
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If Price Insensitive Buyers Become Sellers, Will The Entire Market Collapse?





"If circumstances cause these price-insensitive buyers to turn around and become price-insensitive sellers, there are not a lot of candidates to take the other side. Be prepared for the possibility that some of the same assets that have again and again risen to prices that many investors said were impossible show more downside volatility than investors have bargained for."

 
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The Fed's Circular Logic Exposed In 1 Simple Chart





Hope, quite simply, just isn’t close to enough for a real recovery. There is an undeniable element of troubling prevarication in the whole attempt to coax unearned optimism, as taken to the extreme it means that policymakers will never quite be honest about especially realistic downsides. That may even mean, in their zeal to “fool” consumers, they fool themselves on the circular logic.

 
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Gold Surges Back Above $1100 As Dollar Dumps After Wage Data





Paper gold prices continue their extreme volatility ride, spiking $20 as the dismal ECI data hit this morning (as we pre-suppose weak data means moar money printing inevitably coming down the pike)...

 
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Chinese Stocks Drop, End Worst Month Since August 2009; US Equity Futures Flat





In a repeat of Thursday's action, Chinese stocks which had opened about 1% lower, remained underwater for most of the session before attempting a feeble bounce which took the Shanghai Composite fractionally into the green, before the now traditional last hour action which this time failed to maintain the upward momentum and the last day of the month saw a surge in volume which dragged the market to its lows before closing roughly where it opened, -1.13% lower.  This caps the worst month for Chinese stocks since since August 2009, as the government struggles to rekindle investor interest amid a $3.5 trillion rout, one which has sent the Shanghai market lower by 15% - the biggest loss among 93 global benchmark gauges tracked by Bloomberg.

 
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Why Do So Many Working Age Americans Choose Not To Enter The Workforce?





You could call it the "Mystery of the Missing Worker" – why do so many people of working age chose not to enter the workforce? Here are the numbers, as of the most recent Employment Situation report: 250 million: the total number of people of working age in the United States; 149 million: the total number of people in that population that have a job; 8 million: the number of people who want a job but do not have one; leaving 93 million: the number of people who don’t work, and don’t want work. To put some context around that last number, it is 30% of the entire U.S. population. Why?

 
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Chinese Stocks Tumble In Close Of Trading "Causing Panic", US GDP To Be Revised Higher On Seasonal Adjustments





We start off the overnight wrap up with the usual place, China, where in a mirror image of Wednesday's action, stocks once again started off uneventful, then gradually rose in the afternoon session and meandered near unchanged territory until the last half hour, when out of the blue they tumbled to close near the day's low, some 2.2% below yesterday's closing level.  What caused it?  One possible catalyst came from Reuters which reported that that Chinese banks were investigating their exposure to the stock market via wealth management products and loans backed by stock as collateral. 

 
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Top Factors Undermining Any Oil Price Recovery





Global oil prices have returned to a state of flux. This is hardly news to any who follow the oil markets closely and yet prices continue to drive international headlines. While oil prices are notoriously difficult to predict, it has failed to deter the speculators. There are those warning that the latest dip is a precursor for $40 a barrel, a catastrophe for oil markets in some minds. On the other end of the spectrum are the optimists betting on a return to $100 by 2020. The World Bank has taken a typically middle-of-the-road approach, with forecasts of $57 a barrel in 2015. That said, given Iran’s potential revitalization, Russia’s murky outlook, and U.S. shale supply limits uncertain, prices will be responsive to supply and demand trends; at least in the short to medium term.

 
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China Demonstrates "Sea Combat Ability" With Live Fire Drill Video





Unlike largely pacifist Japan, in China increasing militarism merely leads to a boost in "rally around the flag" morale, and greater patriotic support for the government. Which is probably also why China was eager to release at least one clip showcasing its latest naval "live fire" military capabilities, as shown on the recording below.

 
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Violent Government Buying Spree Sends Chinese Stocks Soaring At Close Of Trading; Yellen On Deck





On a day when market participants will care about only one thing - how hawkish (or dovish) the FOMC sounds at 2:00 pm (no Yellen press conference today) - Chinese stocks provided the usual dramatic sideshow and traded unchanged or modestly negative for most of the day despite the latest $100 billion injection, the close of trading on Wednesday was a mirror image of what happened in the last hour on Monday, as various Chinese "plunge-protection" mechanism went into a furious buying frenzy and government-backed funds rushed to buy anything that trades in the last 60 minutes of trading in what may be the most glaring example of banging the close yet.

 
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Futures Soar On Hope Central Planners Are Back In Control, China Rollercoaster Ends In The Red





For the first half an hour after China opened, things looked bleak: after opening down 5%, the Shanghai Composite staged a quick relief rally, then tumbled again. And then, just around 10pm Eastern, we saw a coordinated central bank intervention stepping in to give the flailing PBOC a helping hand, driven by the BOJ but also involving NY Fed members, that sent the USDJPY soaring which in turn dragged ES and most risk assets up with it. And while Shanghai did end up closing down -1.7%, with Shenzhen 2.2% lower at the close, the final outcome was far better than what could have been, with the result being that S&P futures have gone back to doing their thing, and have wiped out all of yesterday's losses in the levitating, zero volume, overnight session which has long become a favorite setting for central banks buying E-Minis.

 
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The Irony Of Market Manipulation





Having gazed ominously at the extreme monetary policy smoke-and-mirrors intervention in bond markets, and previously explained that "the stock market is to important to leave to the vagaries of an actual market." While the rest of the world's central banks' direct (BoJ) and indirect (Fed, ECB) manipulation of equity markets, nobody bats an eyelid; but when PBOC steps on market volatility's throat (like a bull in a China bear store), people start complaining... finally. There is no difference - none! And no lesser Asian expert than Stephen Roach warns that we should be afraid, very afraid as he states, the great irony of manipulation, he explains, is that "the more we depend on markets, the less we trust them."

 
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UBS Exposes The "Scary Reality" Of High Yield Energy





"Central bank quantitative easing drove traditional investors seeking mid-to-high single digit yields out of investment grade/ crossover credit into high yield, loan and emerging market debt to satisfy yield bogeys. The problem, however, is some of the tourists underappreciate the exponential loss and mark-to-market functions for low quality high yield assets."

 
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