The latest mega data leak which hit the Qatar NationL Bank last week contains hundreds of thousands of records including customer transaction logs, personal identification numbers and credit card data. Additionally, dozens of separate folders consist of information on everything from Al Jazeera journalists to what appears to be the Al-Thani Qatar Royal Family and even contains a slew of records listed as Ministry of Defence, MI6 (the UK foreign intelligence service) and Qatar's State Security Bureau, also known as "Mukhabarat".
For those who thought that the world's biggest company losing over $40 billion in market cap in an instant on disappointing Apple earnings, would have been sufficient to put a dent in US equity futures, we have some disappointing news: with just over 7 hours until the FOMC reveals its April statement, futures are practically unchanged, even though the Nasdaq appears set for an early bruising in the aftermath of what is becoming a disturbing quarter for tech companies. Instead of tech leading, however, the upside has once again come from the energy complex where moments ago WTI rose above $45 a barrel for the first time since November after yesterday's unexpected 1.07 million barrel API inventory drawdown.
Saudi Arabia single-handedly scuttled the Doha meeting, knowing all along that Iran would not participate, with a valid reason. The Russians and others agreed to proceed without Iran, planning to include them at a later date. So if everything was known beforehand, why did the Saudi’s pour cold water on the aspirations of the remaining members, risking its alienation from Russia and the OPEC community? Was it simply Saudi enmity toward Iran? Not exactly. Upon closer scrutiny, we can find the Saudi masterstroke behind Doha.
- Crude's Losses Drag Ruble, Loonie Lower; Stocks Pare Their Drop (BBG)
- Grand Oil Bargain Is Victim of Saudi Arabia's Iran Fixation (BBG)
- Both Parties’ Presidential Front-Runners Increasingly Unpopular (WSJ)
- It's up to you, New York: state takes center stage in election campaign (Reuters)
- Rousseff Hangs by a Thread After Losing Impeachment Vote (BBG)
- China March home prices rise at fastest rate in two years, top cities boom (Reuters)
Good news is still bad news after all. After last night's China 6.7% GDP print which while the lowest since Q1 2009, was in line with expectations, coupled with beats in IP, Fixed Asset Investment and Retail Sales (on the back of $1 trillion in total financing in Q1) the sentiment this morning is that China has turned the corner (if only for the time being). And that's the problem, because while China was a good excuse for the Fed to interrupt its rate hike cycle as the biggest "global" threat, that is no longer the case if China has indeed resumed growing. As such Yellen no longer has a ready excuse to delay. This is precisely why futures are lower as of this moment, because suddenly the "scapegoat" narrative has evaporated.
What in the World is Going on with Banks this Week? Emergency meetings, banker summits, crashing European banks.......Submitted by Bruno de Landevoisin on 04/12/2016 17:29 -0400
Moments ago the IMF did what it does better than anyone (with the exception of the Fed): it once again admitted its forecast of world growth had been too optimistic, and as a result in its just released quarterly World Economic Outlook report, it cut its forecast for 2016 global GDP growth from 3.4% to 3.2%, and from 3.6% to 3.5% for 2017. Indicatively, back in July 2014 the IMF was forecasting 4.0% GDP growth in 2016. It is now 20% lower.
If the IMF is engineering a financial crisis in Europe in order to gain more power and influence, why wouldn’t the Fed be doing the same for the IMF in America? Just as the international bankers use stimulus and rate policy as tools, so, to, do they use chaos.
What's a Couple Hundred Trillion Benjamins Between Friends?
In what he assures will be "an easy decision," Donald Trump has released details of his plan to "compel Mexico to pay for the wall." In a 600 word statement, Trump proposes, in a potentially devastating move for Mexico’s economy, to block billions of dollars in payments immigrants send back home until the nation made "a one-time payment of $5-10 billion" to the U.S.
Under the auspices of "protecting clients from criminal activity," JPMorgan Chase has decided to impose capital controls on . As WSJ reports, following the bank's ATM modification to enable $100-bills to be dispensed with no limit, some customers started pulling out tens of thousands of dollars at a time. This apparent bank run has prompted Jamie Dimon to cap ATM withdrawals at $1,000 per card daily for non-customers. Of course, we are sure this is just another 'storm in a teacup' as why would anyone complain about a bank withholding people's money when they are assuredly tax evaders, terrorists, drug dealers and human traffickers.
"Jurgen Mossack’s family landed here in the 1960s. During World War II, his father had served in the Nazi Party’s Waffen-SS, according to U.S. Army intelligence files obtained by the ICIJ. Once in Panama, the elder Mossack offered to spy on communists in Cuba for the CIA." And yes, Mossack Fonseca may now be history, and its countless uberwealthy clients exposed, but none other than Rothschild is now delighted to be able to fill its rather large shoes.
- 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)
Whatever Trump is, his popularity does indicate a rising tide of discontent within the U.S. The damage to America has for the most part already been done, and there will be no avoiding the consequences. That said, how we rebuild can still be determined. No political leader including Trump will ever be able to heal the American system or the American psyche, but the efforts of millions of independent and liberty minded Americans can. We have a long and terrible struggle ahead of us, but to look at it from an “optimistic” perspective, at least Americans are becoming sick of the status quo. That is a start.
John Perkins, author of The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, tells a dark story of an elite cabal working in the shadows to subjugate governments as it pursues ever-greater control of the planet's resources. What's most frightening about this story is how credible it is. Anybody paying attention to world developments will have a hard time dismissing Perkins' claims out-of-hand; and a harder time not being sickened at how on the mark his claims may likely prove to be...