- U.S. set to adopt Volcker rule to curb bank trading gambles (Reuters) After vote, lawsuits likely next hurdle for Volcker rule (Reuters)
- U.S. Congress budget talks could produce Tuesday deal, aides say (Reuters)
- Wealthy Go Frugal This Holiday Amid Uneven U.S. Recovery (BBG)
- Tearful Thai PM urges protesters to take part in election (Reuters)
- Fed’s Bullard Sees Higher QE Taper Odds as Labor Market Improves (BBG)
- Coeure Says ECB Would Offer More LTROs Only When Banks Can Lend (BBG)
- Inside China's Super-Sterile Chicken Farms (WSJ)
- Mandela Service Rivals JFK’s as Leaders Meet in South Africa (BBG)
- China data defy slowdown forecasts (FT), and of course the word is "data"
- Cold, ice grip U.S. as more snow to blanket East (Reuters)
- Record unemployment, low inflation underline Europe's pain (Reuters)
- The ponzi gets bigger and bigger: Spanish banks up sovereign bond holdings by more than 10% (FT)
- California Lawmakers Turn Down Moratorium on Fracking (BBG)
- China’s Growing Ranks of Elderly Beset by Depression, Study Says (BBG)
- Tokyo Prepares for a Once-in-200-Year Flood to Top Sandy (BBG)
- Morgan Stanley Cutting Correlation Unit Added $50 Billion (BBG)
- IMF warns over yen weakness (FT)
- Rising radioactive spills leave Fukushima fishermen floundering (Reuters)
- India records slowest growth in a decade (FT)
- JPMorgan Leads Job Cuts as Banks Seek to Bolster Profit (BBG)
- North Koreans don't show for work at Kaesong factory park (Reuters), as NK urges foreigners to leave South Korea (FT)
- Lisbon Struggles to Close New Budget Gap (WSJ)
- Portugal may face delay to bailout funds (FT)
- Putin Squeezing Out UBS to Deutsche Bank Using Oligarchs (BBG)
- China's Xi Says Fast Growth Over (WSJ)
- Spain’s PM wants more powers for ECB (FT)
- Bernanke Says Interest on Reserves Would Be Main Tightening Tool (BBG)
- Bird Flu Claims 7th Victim in China (WSJ)
- Texting While Flying Linked to Commercial Helicopter Crash (BBG)... No, Bernanke wasn't the pilot
If we lacked Direction last week, this week was a strong case for “The Only Way is Up!” with Risk assets soaring. Quite a cleansing process over the last weeks: weak longs stopped out, weak shorts stopped out. Volatility crushed nevertheless.
"The Only Way Is Up" (Bunds 1,44% +12; Spain 5,60% -26; Stoxx 2552 +4,8%; EUR 1,296 +260)
Forget Chuck Schumer's cat-out-of-the-bag 'get back to work' comments to Bernanke, now it is union-leaders who are advising the world's central bankers. "There is a not a single reason not to lower rates" exclaims Sweden's trade union confederation to the central bank as he begins negotiations with employers on wage deals for next year. His demands (for lower rates) are "far from excessive" and he adds "should not cause inflation" as Swedish organized labor have "never called for levels that ... could not be supported economically." It seems that everyone, from NYTimes bloggers & NY politicians to Swedish Hoffas know best what the central planners must do - and furthermore, it is becoming clear to an increasing mob who is really in charge (sadly).
European equities ripping and squeezed after Friday’s dismal close. Credit the same and, as more often than not lately, overdoing the equity move. EGBs rather muted with the Core pretty much where it stood throughout last week – with exception of Friday afternoon. Spain back on the radar. Europe still under US influence. Huge relief. From what and why exactly still needs to be seen. In the meantime: Rip & Tear!
"Rip And Tear" (Bunds 1,35% +3; Spain 5,88% +2; Stoxx 2495 +2,7%; EUR 1,281 +110)
Some correction of Friday’s Bull trap: European Risk Off, EGB credit torsion and weaker equities.
Doubtful whether any fireworks will come out of the ECOFIN meeting.
Seems to be more about maintaining the relative market quietness and status-quo.
- Draghi Says Next Move Not His as Spain Resists Bailout (Bloomberg)
- EU Doubts on Deficit Cutting May Hinder Spain’s Path to Bailout (Bloomberg)
- Merkel to Visit Greece for First Time Since Crisis Outbreak (Bloomberg)
- Fed's Bullard warns inflation won't ease U.S. debt burden (Reuters)
- Walmart Workers Stage a Walkout in California (NYT)
- Natural Gas Glut Pushes Exports (WSJ)
- BOJ Refrains From More Stimulus as Political Pressure Mounts (Bloomberg)
- Big funds seek to rein in pay at Wall Street banks (Reuters)
- Hong Kong Luxury Sales Fall as Chinese Curb Spending (Bloomberg)
- Dave and Busters Pulls IPO due to "Market Conditions" (Reuters) - so market at anything but all time highs now is market conditions?
- Weak U.S. labor market looms ahead of elections (Reuters)
- Glut of Solar Panels Poses a New Threat to China (NYT)
- No Joy on Wall Street as Biggest Banks Earn $63 Billion (Bloomberg)
- And more good news: IMF’s Blanchard Says Crisis Will Last a Decade (Reuters)
- Hobbit Returns to Find Middle Earth Has Become Expensive (Bloomberg)
- Freddie's Foreclosure Plan Hits Roadblock (WSJ)
- Who will buy the FT? Pearson CEO Scardino Will Step Down as Fallon Takes Over (BBG)
- Jeremy Lin Said to Be in Talks With Harvard on Licensing Deal (Bloomberg)
- Jon Weil tears apart the NYAG "prosecution" - Eric Schneiderman Will Have to Do Better Than This (BBG)
- Portugal Offers to Exchange Bonds as It Seeks Debt Market Access (Bloomberg)
- Is unlimited growth a thing of the past? (FT-Martin Wolf)
- European Bank Capital Results Overtaken by Tougher Global Rules (Bloomberg)
- China’s Slowdown Reverberates as ADB Cuts Forecasts (Bloomberg)
- Tokyo has no plan to extend currency swap deal with Seoul (Reuters)
The markets mood is shifting from certainty to uncertainty. The unpalatable truth about a stable Europe is it takes all its many and diverse participants to be singing off the same hymn sheet. Unfortunately they aren't. The different objectives and aims of each group are becoming increasingly apparent. The Bottom line remains if the Euro can be held together, then Italy and Spain bond yields will tighten. Simple. Unfortunately, the tensions inherent in the system threaten to pull it apart. A brief study of history will show conflict and naked self-interest are the only permanent features inherent to any human system. Name me an alliance, an empire, a union, a nation or any large political unit that has, at some point, not tried to pull itself apart? Meanwhile... the global recession gets deeper. Yesterday the slowing European economy caused Volvo to acknowledge slowing truck demand... Who could have predicted that? And its going to get worse.
It looks like someone took a page from the Bernanke open-ended playbook, who when tasked by Chuck Schumer to "get to work, Mr. Chairman", and realizing his job is on the line, literally bet the Fed's political ranch on the biggest liquidity tsunami ever conceived in Keynesian history with consequences which as Gary Kaminsky explained earlier, will be akin to a Kamikaze pilot, if one who has over 310 million passengers. That someone was one or more German safecrackers in the town of Nottuln-Darup, who were eagerly pursuing their New Normal patriotic duty to release some bank reserves into broad circulation by blasting through a safe on Sunday night, when they used some extra laced C-4, in the process blew up the entire bank, shattering windows across the street, and causing hundreds of thousands of euros worth of damage. Perhaps this, more than anything, is the best visual of just what Bernanke's attempt to unclog the "bank plumbing" will look like in the end, even better than Zimbabwe coordinated 1 million man flush. The silver lining: at least they added to German GDP: if today's Ifo number is any indication, Germany desperately needs it.
- World on track for record food prices 'within a year' due to US drought (Telegraph)
- Foxconn halts production at plant after mass brawl (BBC)
- Germany Losing Patience With Spain as EU Warns on Crisis Effort (Bloomberg)
- Fed Recovery Doubts Spur Investor Bid for Treasuries (Bloomberg)
- Japan protests as Chinese ships enter disputed waters (Reuters)
- In Shark-Infested Waters, Resolve of Two Giants Is Tested (NYT)
- China jails Wang Lijun for 15 years (FT)
- China closes in on Bo Xilai after jailing ex-police chief (Reuters)
- European Leaders Struggle to Overcome Crisis Stalemate (Bloomberg)
- Politicians 1: Austerity 0 - Portugal Gives Ground on Worker Contributions (WSJ)
- Obama Controls Most of His Money as Republicans Have More (Bloomberg)
- Coeure Says Not Clear That Further ECB Interest-Rate Cut Needed (Bloomberg)
- France Seeks Labour Overhaul (WSJ)
Once upon a time we thought that literally throwing cash out of rapidly moving objects was a privilege strictly reserved for Fed chairmen. Not any more. Moments ago, a car chase in South Los Angeles went horribly right, when two bank thieves who managed to find a Bank of America branch which actually had cash in it, and robbed it, proceeded to throw cash out of the moving car as it was being chased by a cohort of cops. Since the getaway car happened to be a Volvo, they naturally failed to get away, but not before they became local Robin Hood-type heroes to the massive gathering of gawkers all of whom would appear gainfully employed if only they were not just standing there, doing nothing, and hoping to steal the already stolen money in a major LA intersection at 11:30 am local time on a Wednesday. At least we now have the first two joint candidates to take over the BOE's soon to be vacant governorship.