The US Federal Reserve has been universally lauded for the apparent success of its extreme monetary policy of recent years. With key world stock markets near record highs, traders universally love the Fed’s zero-interest-rate and quantitative-easing campaigns. But this celebration is terribly premature. The full impact of these wildly-unprecedented policies won’t become apparent until they are fully normalized. The most-extreme monetary experiment by far in US history is just at half-time now, the fat lady hasn’t even taken the stage. The full normalization of ZIRP and QE is likely to be as negative for stock and bond prices as its ramping up proved positive for them.
While we showed what the all important Goldman jobs preview looks like, here is a quick snapshot of what consensus expects will be reported in 15 minutes:
- US Change in Nonfarm Payrolls (Jun) M/M Exp. 233K (Low 160K, High 290K), Prev. 280K, Apr. 221K
- US Unemployment Rate (Jun) M/M Exp. 5.4% (Low 5.3%, High 5.5%), Prev. 5.5%, Apr. 5.4%
- US Average Hourly Earnings (Jun) M/M Exp. 0.2% (Low 0.1%, High 0.3%), Prev. 0.3%, Apr. 0.1%
Greece, Europe and the world are being crucified on a cross of Keynesian central banking. The latter’s two-decade long deluge of money printing and ZIRP has generated a fantastic worldwide financial bubble, and one which has accrued to just a tiny slice of mankind. That much is blindingly evident, but there’s more and it’s worse. The present replay of high noon on Greece’s impossible mountain of debt clarifies an even greater evil. Namely, that the central bank printing presses have also utterly destroyed the fundamental requisite of fiscal democracy. To wit, in the modern world of massive, interventionist welfare states, fiscal governance desperately needs an honest bond market.
today is Friday taken to the nth degree, with the markets having already declared if not victory then the death of all Greek "contagion" leverage, following news that a new Greek proposal was sent yesterday (which as we summarized does not include any of the demanded by the Troika pension cuts), ignoring news that Greece had again sent Belgium the wrong proposal which the market has taken as a sign of capitulation by Tsipras, and as a result futures are surging higher by nearly 1%, the German DAX is up a whopping 3.1%, on track for the biggest one day gain in three years, Greek stocks up over 8%, German and US Treasurys sliding while Greek and peripheral bonds are surging.
Today’s style of heavy-handed monetary central planning destroys capitalist prosperity. Real capitalism cannot thrive unless inventive and enterprenurial genius is rewarded with outsized fortunes. Warren Buffett’s $73 billion net worth, and numerous like and similar financial gambling fortunes that have arisen since 1987, are not due to genius; they are owing to adept surfing on the $50 trillion bubble that has been generated by the central bank Keynesianism of Alan Greenspan and his successors.
It is fair to say, Bloomberg’s Richard Breslow dares to say - without being trite, that this really is a very interesting pivotal week we are heading into. The FOMC trying to thread the needle of moving on, keeping everyone calm and keeping a wary eye on a geopolitical landscape that isn’t getting better. Greek negotiations that layer existential questions of problem resolution paralysis on top of default and Grexit. And let’s not forget MERS, Turkey coalition issues, Hong Kong bomb makers, Ukraine and meaningful MPCs given Kuroda’s comments, CHF wariness and NOK economic projections. Feels to me like Act 4 of Macbeth, “Double, double toil and trouble.” Lots of predictions, forecasts and pronouncements, but what will it all really mean and should we beware what we ask for?
The Fed’s balance sheet grew eight times more rapidly than the economy during the last fourteen years. That’s just the inverse of the relationship that occurred back in the Golden Era. if you need any proof at all of this massive intrusion into the financial system isn’t working; the huge amount of money printing and balance sheet expansion; the unremitting financial repression and pegging of interest rates; look at that fundamental comparison. The only thing it’s really doing is simply inflating the serial bubble that ultimately reach unsustainable peaks and collapse. Hopefully on the third strike, the people who gave us these bubbles will be out.
During the last 27 years the financial system has ballooned dramatically while the US economy has slowed to a crawl - a divergent trend that has intensified with the passage of time. While the rationale for monetary central planning is bogus, the model on which state intervention is based is even more invalid.
For a sense of what is driving sentiment this morning look no further than the Athens stock market which exploded higher yesterday on a Bloomberg story based on "two sources" that Germany was willing to compromise, only to close just as the IMF pulled a classis bad cop and announced it was halting work on Greece, and before further news from Bild that Germany was preparing for a Greek default while Europe had given Greece 24 hours to submit a final, workable proposal. As a result, it tumbled promptly at the open even as optimism persists and since the opening plunge, Greek stocks have continued to climb and are now back to yesterday's euphoric opening levels.
Are we QE'd out??? It was supposed to be about the quality of growth,not helping the oligarchy protect their collective arses
This central bank fueled boom will ultimately be paid for in the form of a prolonged deflationary contraction. Then, trillions of uneconomic assets will be written off, industrial sector profits will collapse and the great inflation of financial assets over the last 27 years will meet its day of reckoning. On the morning after, of course, it will be asked why the central banks were permitted to engineer this fantastic financial and economic bubble. The short answer is that it was done so that monetary central planners could smooth and optimize the business cycle and save world capitalism from its purported tendency toward instability, underperformance and depressionary collapse.
The most important not yet double seasonally-adjusted economic datapoint is upon us: in 90 minutes the BLS will report the May payrolls number which consensus expects to rise by 225K, (range of 140K to 305K), barely unchanged from April's 223K. The meaningless unemployment rate is expected to remain unchanged at 5.4%, even as the number of people not in the labor force likely will rise to a new record high. The most important variable, however, will be the hourly earnings with consensus expecting a 0.2% increase for all workers (the non-supervisory workers category is a different story entirely), up from the 0.1% increase in April.
The carnage in Europe and US bonds is echoing on around the world as Aussie 10Y yields jump 15bps at the open (to 3.04% - the highest in 6 months) and the biggest 2-day spike in 2 years. JGBs are also jumping, breaking to new 6-month highs above 50bps once again raising the spectre of VAR-Shock-driven vicious cycles...
Central banks took over everything and thus changed everything; they cannot simply declare themselves successful and just give it all back. That might (stress might) have been possible had it actually worked, a true and robust economic recovery to smooth the shift, but the majority part of that November 2013 recoil was the growing acceptance, throughout 2014 and into 2015, that it was never coming in the first place.