en Support For Anti-Muslim AfD Hits Record High As 60% Agree That "Islam Does Not Belong In Germany" <p>We recently pointed out that Germany's Alternative for Germany (AfD) party <a href="">was gaining significant popularity</a> as the anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim tide continued to rise in Germany. We then noted that everyone in the establishment will be shocked when the AfD's polling numbers started to climb higher.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>We expect much more such back and forth between the "left" and the "right", which just like in the US, will ultimately benefit the object the media has decided to target for ridicule, <strong>until - just like in Austria - Germany's establishment is shocked when the AfD's polling skyrockets in the coming months and leads to drastic changes in Germany's political landscape.</strong></em></p> </blockquote> <p>It turns out we didn't have to wait long for that to become a reality. In a recent <a href="">survey</a> for ARD<strong>&nbsp;</strong>, <strong><a href="">support</a> for Germany's right-wing populist party AfD is at a record 15% (+1)</strong>, closing in on the centre-left's SPD, which fell to 20% (-1), <strong>its lowest level of support since 1997</strong>. Angela Merkel's CDU/CSU bloc came in at 33% (-1). <em><strong><br /></strong></em></p> <p><em><strong><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="394" /></a></strong></em></p> <p>SPD experienced a loss of confidence across the board (family policy, property trust, social justice).</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="389" /></a></p> <p>In yet another <a href="">poll</a> for Bild newspaper by the Insa Institute, <strong>an astonishing 61% of Germans agreed that Islam does not belong in Germany. This result further explains AfD's surge in popularity, as the AfD <a href="">reportedly</a> has a section in its new party program called "Islam is not part of Germany"</strong>, which is a position that 92% of its supporters agree with.</p> <p>With the AfD only behind SPD by 5 points in the polls, it won't be long until the AfD is able to close the gap and become Germany's second most popular party. <strong>An increasingly powerful AfD who shares the same anti-Muslim, anti-Sentiment as a growing number of German voters means that the political landscape in Germany is changing rapidly, and significantly.</strong></p> <p>* * *</p> <p>As a bonus, the ARD poll indicates that it's becoming quite clear Obama's Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) proposal has found few supporters in Germany, which will put pressure on Angela Merkel not to support it.</p> <p><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">47% view the <a href="">TTIP</a> proposal as having no economic benefit</span> as opposed to 41% who believe the deal will yield benefits</strong>.</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="382" /></a></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="268" height="178" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Germany Newspaper Reality Thu, 05 May 2016 18:09:44 +0000 Tyler Durden 530587 at Stunning Dash Cam Footage From Inside Alberta's "Apocalyptic" Inferno <p>The fire burning in the middle of Canada's oil sands, which as reported earlier has led to the evacuation of over 80,000 local residents, has resulted in is set to <a href="">trim oil output by about 500kbp for about 10 days</a>, has been described as "<a href="">apocalyptic</a>." The following dash cam videos which have captured the reality for some 80,000 local residents demonstrate why.&nbsp; </p> <p> <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe> </p> <p> <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe> </p> <p> <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe> </p> <p> <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe> </p> <p> <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe> </p> <p> <iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> Reality Thu, 05 May 2016 17:47:59 +0000 Tyler Durden 530580 at One Chart Says It All <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Charles Hugh-Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,</em></a></p> <p><em>People sense the &#39;recovery&quot; is bogus, and their rational response is to save more money rather than squander it. </em></p> <p><strong>Sometimes one chart captures the fundamental reality of the economy:</strong> for example, this chart of money velocity and the civilian-population ratio. (thank you, Joseph Y. for posting it on my Facebook feed.)</p> <p><img align="middle" border="0" src="" /></p> <p><strong>When the blue line is up, more of the population has a job.</strong> (the blue line is the Employment-Population ratio.)</p> <p><strong>The red line is money velocity</strong>, the rate at which money changes hands. (Money buried in the coffee can in the back yard has a money velocity of zero.)</p> <p>As Joseph noted, the correlation between the percentage of people working and money velocity was strong until 2010. In the post-2009 recession &quot;recovery,&quot; the percentage of the populace with jobs rose modestly, but money velocity absolutely cratered to unprecedented lows.</p> <p>(The one other disconnect was triggered by the 1987 stock market crash, which caused money velocity to dip even as more people entered the workforce. This absence of correlation was relatively brief.)</p> <p><strong>The correlation between more people working and money velocity is commonsensical.</strong> More people working = more household income = more spending = higher money velocity.</p> <p><strong>But something changed in 2010.</strong> Did the quality and compensation of work change? Joseph observed: <em> People started going back to work after the official recession ended in Q4 2009 but they were working for lower pay. With lower pay comes less disposable income, hence the cliff-like drop off in velocity. </em></p> <p><strong>Another potential factor is higher inflation.</strong> Some recent estimates (<a href="" target="resource">Where&#39;s The Beef? &lsquo;Lies, Damned Lies, And Statistics&rsquo;</a>) suggest the gap between official inflation and actual inflation in rent, food, energy and medical care in the past 20 years has subtracted 20% from paychecks.</p> <p><em>The four &quot;biggies&quot; for the average American are rent, food, energy, and medical care, in approximately that order. These &quot;four horsemen&quot; have been galloping along at a faster rate than headline CPI. According to the BLS definition, they compose about 60% of the aggregate population&#39;s consumption basket, but for struggling middle-class Americans, it&#39;s closer to 80%. For the working poor, spending on these four categories can stretch to as much as 90% of total spending. </em></p> <p>(If we add exposure to higher education&#39;s soaring costs, the rate goes even higher.)</p> <p><strong>So even if wages held steady, once we factor in &quot;real&quot; inflation, real take-home pay has declined by 5% to 20%</strong>, depending on the household&#39;s exposure to rent, food, energy, medical care (love those co-pays and out-of-pocket expenses) and higher education.</p> <p><strong>Another potential factor is the figurative coffee can in the back yard:</strong> people sense the &#39;recovery&quot; is bogus, and their rational response is to save more money rather than squander it. Even though central banks have reduced the yield on savings to less than zero, people are still saving whatever they can.</p> <p><strong>Data suggests it&#39;s all three:</strong> lower incomes, higher inflation and a recognition that savings are more important in a &lsquo;Lies, Damned Lies, And Statistics&rsquo; economy than more spending.</p> <p><strong>This chart says it all: real income is declining and the bottom 95% are poorer.</strong> No wonder people are socking away what they can and tightening their spending: they have no other choice, even as the Federal Reserve strip-mines their savings.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="527" height="327" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> BLS Central Banks CPI Federal Reserve Market Crash Money Velocity Reality Recession recovery Thu, 05 May 2016 17:35:56 +0000 Tyler Durden 530585 at The World's Largest Shipping Company Is Already Preparing For The Next Oil Crash <p>It was almost a year ago, when having tumbled in early 2015, oil proceeded to rebound strongly into the summer, where it traded at about $60 for three months, before US production resumed resulting in the next big leg lower which culminated with this's February drop to 13 year lows. At that point a comparable rebound to last year materialized, and just like last year,&nbsp; the pundits have emerged claiming that there will be no further downside. Incidentally, we covered this comparison previously in "<a href="">For Oil 2016 Is Setting Up To Be A Rerun Of Last Year</a>."</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="456" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>However, unlike last year, not everyone is (wrongly) convinced that this time the rebound in oil will be sustainable. One very prominent company that is already preparing for the next oil crash is the world's largest shipping company, Danish conglomerate A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S (also known as Maersk).&nbsp; </p> <p>Maersk is perhaps best known for its pragmatic, even downright bearish outlook on the global economy. Recall that <a href="">three months ago</a>, the company admitted in its annual report that "demand for transportation of goods was significantly lower than expected, especially in the emerging markets as well as the Group’s key Europe trades, where the impact was further accelerated by de-stocking of the high inventory levels."</p> <p>The company's CEO, Nils Andersen, <a href="">told the FT in February that </a>"<strong>it is worse than in 2008. </strong>The oil price is as low as its lowest point in 2008-09 and has stayed there for a long time and doesn’t look like going up soon. Freight rates are lower. The external conditions are much worse but we are better prepared."</p> <p><strong>It is the risk that the current 60% rebound in oil prices from 2016 lows is just another temporary bounce, that has forced Maersk to start preparing for the next oil crash. </strong>The company's CEO is confident that since the world keeps producing more petroleum than it can consume, it is "adapting its cost base to prepare for the risk of lower crude prices" <a href="">according to Bloomberg</a>.</p> <p>As a result, Maersk's oil unit is already exploring bigger cost cuts than previously planned. "The price will obviously be driven by the balance between supply and demand and there will be oversupply for many months still,” he said by phone from Copenhagen. "<strong>It definitely can’t be ruled out that the oil price will fall again.</strong>"</p> <p>To be sure, Andersen is ultimately bullish on higher oil price... he is just not bullish on the path that oil prices will take to his higher price target: "I have previously said the oil price was too low, but it’s very plausible that the balance between supply and demand will continue to be unfavorable,” Andersen said.</p> <p>Recent cost-cuts by Maersk have drastically reduced its breakeven oil price: in its latest full year forecast, the company predicted it can now break even with oil at $40 to $45. It previously said oil needed to trade at about $45 to $55 in order to avoid a loss. "We’re happy we’ve reached the goal we set,” Andersen said. “We will definitely work on cutting costs even further."</p> <p>As it continues to cut costs, we expect that Maersk will soon be profitable with oil in the $30, if not lower. Which is precisely the contingency Maersk is actively preparing for.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="480" height="357" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Copenhagen Crude Global Economy Thu, 05 May 2016 17:17:37 +0000 Tyler Durden 530574 at Haunting Pictures Of A Transportation Recession As Freight Rail Traffic Plunges <p><em>Submitted by Wolf Richter of <a href="">Wolf Street</a></em></p> <p><strong>Freight Rail Traffic Plunges: Haunting Pictures of Transportation Recession</strong></p> <p><em><strong>292 Union Pacific engines idled in Arizona Desert</strong></em></p> <p>Total US rail traffic in April plunged 11.8% from a year ago, the Association of American Railroads reported today. Carloads of bulk commodities such as coal, oil, grains, and chemicals plummeted 16.1% to 944,339 units.</p> <p>The coal industry is in a <a href="" target="_blank">horrible condition</a> and cannot compete with US natural gas at current prices. Coal-fired power plants are being retired. Demand for steam coal is plunging. Major US coal miners – even the largest one – are now bankrupt. So in April, carloads of coal plummeted 40% from the already beaten-down levels a year ago. The <a href="">AAR report</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Rail coal traffic continues to suffer due to low natural gas prices and high coal stockpiles at power plants. Coal accounted for just 26% of non-intermodal rail traffic for US railroads in April 2016, down from 36% in April 2015 and 45% as recently as late 2011.</p> </blockquote> <p>Only five of the 20 commodity categories saw gains. Of the decliners, coal was the biggest. But petroleum products also plunged 25%, and grain mill products dropped 7%. Even without coal, carloads were down 3% year-over-year.</p> <p>But it’s not just coal. In April, loads of containers and trailers fell 7.5% year-over-year to 1,028,460 intermodal units. They transport goods for retailers and wholesalers. They haul parts, components, and assemblies for manufacturers. They haul imported goods from ports and borders to different destinations across the country, and they haul goods to be exported to the ports and borders. They’re a measure of the real economy.</p> <p>For the first 17 weeks of the year, total rail freight fell 7.8% from the same period a year ago, with carload traffic down 14.3% and intermodal down 0.8%.</p> <p>But there’s hope, because&nbsp;there’s always hope. AAR Senior VP of Policy and Economics John Gray:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“We expect non-coal carloads to strengthen when the economy gets stronger, and we think intermodal weakness in April is probably at least partly a function of high business inventories that need to be drawn down before new orders, and thus new shipments, are made.”</p> </blockquote> <p>Ah yes, inventories. We’ve long bemoaned their <a href="" target="_blank">ballooning to crisis levels</a>.</p> <p>It didn’t get any better at the end of April: for the week ending April 30, carloads plunged 14.1% and intermodal traffic dropped 8.6% from the same week a year ago.</p> <p>The impact on railroads is now very visible – and not just in the numbers on their income statements.</p> <p>Here’s how Union Pacific is dealing with this issue, via Google Earth, on May 3: 292 engines idled on a siding west of Benson, Arizona, along I-10, for a stretch of nearly 4 miles. Note how the line of locomotives&nbsp;curves and fades into the left edge of the photo – an once&nbsp;majestic and haunting&nbsp;sight, all these powerful machines idled on a track in the Arizona desert (click images to enlarge):</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="426" /></a></p> <p>These engines are expensive pieces of equipment.&nbsp;When they just sit there, not pulling trains, they become “overcapacity,” and they get very expensive. Then there are engineers and other personnel who&nbsp;suddenly become unproductive. What you see parked&nbsp;here is a drag on earnings. I added the red line for clarity:</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="183" /></a></p> <p>The person who sent me these&nbsp;pictures lives and works in that neck of the woods. He said:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>“I remember back in 2008-2009, hundreds if not thousands of rail cars stacked along I-10 in AZ-NM on side rails.&nbsp;I have not traveled east bound in a couple of years. I suspect rail cars may be piling up. They need to be parked somewhere. We may head over to Carlsbad Caverns in eastern NM soon, and I will keep an eye out…”</p> </blockquote> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="408" /></a></p> <p>This scenario is playing out across the country, railroad by railroad, perhaps thousands of engines and hundreds of thousands of rail cars – an enormous capital investment – parked mostly out of sight somewhere, “overcapacity” that is now waiting for better days, and the end of the US transportation recession.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="778" height="553" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Google Natural Gas Recession Thu, 05 May 2016 17:12:52 +0000 Tyler Durden 530549 at "Summer Of Shocks" Is Upon Us: BofA Warns "Own Volatility", Wait To Buy Stocks Until VIX > 20 <p><strong>&quot;Own volatility..&quot;</strong> is the subtle message from BofA&#39;s Michael Hartnett, who warns &quot;don&#39;t add risk before SPX 1950-2000 range and/or VIX&gt;20.&quot; Simply put, as he explains below,<strong> bullish &quot;positioning shocks&quot; &amp; &quot;policy shocks&quot; are largely behind us</strong>; and there is no bullish &quot;profits shock&quot; coming in a world that cannot cope with a higher US dollar &amp; higher rates.</p> <p><em>2016 YTD global total returns: commodities 7.6%, bonds 7.5%, equities 1.1%, the US dollar -5.8%. </em></p> <p>Our base case remains:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>End of excess liquidity + end of excess profits = end of excess returns = higher weightings in cash, volatility &amp; gold in 2016</strong></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Shift from &quot;raging bull&quot; (2009-13) to &lsquo;sitting bull&rdquo; (2014-15) to &ldquo;volatility bull&quot; (2016)</strong> reflects: a. low probability of Higher EPS &amp; Lower Rates, and, b. redemption, repression, regulation risks</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Positioning + policy correctly caused Feb-April risk-rally</strong>; post-March we have been sellers into strength; case for volatility once again rising driven by the &ldquo;3P&rsquo;s&rdquo; of Positioning, Policy &amp; Profits</p> </blockquote> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>The bullish &ldquo;positioning shock&rdquo; is largely behind us:</strong></span> our BofAML Bull &amp; Bear index has jumped from an uber-bullish 0.1 level in Feb to 5.1 today, an 11-month high (Chart 5); cash levels, which were at 15-year highs in Feb according to the BofAML FMS, are falling as investors rotate from cash to corporate bonds; BofAML private client equity allocation is back up to 59% (up from 56% in Feb&rsquo;16, albeit below all-time high of 63% in Mar&rsquo;15).</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 393px;" /></a></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>The bullish &ldquo;policy shock&rdquo; is largely behind us:</strong></span> the policy &ldquo;panic&rdquo; of Feb &amp; March was ended with the BoJ decision last week to disappoint market expectations of further easing; Quantitative Failure stalks Japan (see yen surge and unbelievably low level of JGB yields - 0.31% for the 40-year yields; debt deflation stalks China (watch CN0C Index); and while the ECB is limiting credit spreads, recent ECB actions have coincided with higher euro, not higher bond yields, bank stocks &amp; inflation expectations; meanwhile Fed willingness to raise rates likely will continue to create fear of &ldquo;events&rdquo; (Chart 6). The likelihood of a Trump-Clinton election match-up supports our Main Street versus Wall Street theme. Both candidates state support for the working class versus the rich.</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 332px;" /></a></p> <p><u><strong>There is no bullish &ldquo;profit shock&rdquo;:</strong></u> global EPS (Chart 7) &amp; global GDP forecasts continue to be revised lower; good, reliable, cyclical lead indicators, e.g. the SOX index, are rolling over/heading back toward floor of 18-month range; and the decline in US corporate profits has extremely ominous implications for US payroll numbers in coming months (consensus looks for 200k on Friday). Watch credit: the global high yield index (HW00 Index) is approaching all-time highs; a break above 330 would be risk-on, but we think credit fails to hit new highs.</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 434px;" /></a></p> <p>And finally, ahead of tomorrow, <strong>we note that profits portend weaker payrolls...</strong></p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 431px;" /></a><br />&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="792" height="573" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> B+ Bond China High Yield Japan Main Street Volatility Yen Thu, 05 May 2016 17:08:36 +0000 Tyler Durden 530584 at From 'Mad Dog' Mattis To New Mexico's Martinez - Donald Trump's Top 10 'Veep' Contenders <p>The race for The White House appears to have taken a backseat for a news cycle as the Republican &quot;<strong><em>veepstakes</em></strong>&quot; gets underway. Donald Trump said this morning that he would<strong> prefer a running mate with government experience to &quot;help with pushing legislation through,&quot;</strong> adding that he puts a <strong>40% chance that a former rival</strong> in the Republican race would get the nod.</p> <p><iframe height="298" src=";byGuid=3000515264&amp;size=530_298" width="530"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href=""> As The Hill reports,</a> picking a VP could be a difficult undertaking, as some potential candidates might be hesitant to hitch their political future to a polarizing figure like Trump, but there will be <strong>plenty willing to roll the dice and join his historic outsider campaign</strong>...</p> <p><object classid="clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" codebase=",0,47,0" height="270" id="flashObj" width="480"><param name="movie" value=";isUI=1" /><param name="bgcolor" value="#FFFFFF" /><param name="flashVars" value="videoId=4879536120001&amp;playerID=407451912001&amp;playerKey=AQ~~,AAAAAEA-5AE~,7pYsU79IKz1jyZLSY9Sb290m5ARebDo_&amp;domain=embed&amp;dynamicStreaming=true" /><param name="base" value="" /><param name="seamlesstabbing" value="false" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="swLiveConnect" value="true" /><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><embed allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" base="" bgcolor="#FFFFFF" flashvars="videoId=4879536120001&amp;playerID=407451912001&amp;playerKey=AQ~~,AAAAAEA-5AE~,7pYsU79IKz1jyZLSY9Sb290m5ARebDo_&amp;domain=embed&amp;dynamicStreaming=true" height="270" name="flashObj" pluginspage="" seamlesstabbing="false" src=";isUI=1" swliveconnect="true" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="480"></embed></object></p> <p>Based on discussions with strategists and political insiders, here are the top 10 early contenders to be Trump&rsquo;s running mate:</p> <p><u><strong>New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez</strong></u></p> <p>Landing the popular and telegenic governor of New Mexico would be a coup for Trump.</p> <p>Martinez is the first&nbsp;female&nbsp;governor of New Mexico&nbsp;and the first Hispanic to lead the Republican Governors Association.</p> <p>Those attributes could go a long way in helping Trump beat back criticism that he&rsquo;s a misogynist and that his hawkish rhetoric on immigration is xenophobic and racist.</p> <p>Furthermore, New Mexico was once a swing state. While the state has gone for Democrats in five of the last six elections, George W. Bush defeated <a href="">John Kerry</a> there in 2004.</p> <p>Martinez has maintained a high favorability rating in the state through her second term and won reelection there in a landslide. Having her on the ticket could put the state in play.</p> <p>But convincing Martinez to get on board could be a heavy lift for Trump. She backed Sen. <a href="">Marco Rubio</a> (R-Fla.) in the primary and has denounced Trump&rsquo;s remarks about illegal immigrants being rapists and other criminals.</p> <p><u><strong>Ohio Gov. John Kasich</strong></u></p> <p>Trump said&nbsp;on Wednesday&nbsp;he&rsquo;d consider vetting Kasich,&nbsp;even&nbsp;before the Ohio governor had officially ended his campaign.</p> <p>Trump and Kasich never battled the way other former candidates did, and many Republicans believe he stayed in the race for so long to burnish his vice presidential bona fides.</p> <p>Kasich is trail-tested and, as the popular governor of a critical swing state, must be included on any vice presidential short-list.</p> <p>Trump has said he&rsquo;s looking for someone with political experience. In addition to being governor, Kasich spent nearly 20 years as a member of the House. He was chairman of the Budget Committee and boasts of being the chief architect responsible for balancing the federal budget under former President <a href="">Bill Clinton</a>.</p> <p>He has cut a mostly moderate profile as governor. His liberal rhetoric on healthcare, education and social issues drives some conservatives crazy but could expand Trump&rsquo;s appeal to the middle in a general election.</p> <p>Kasich&rsquo;s hard line on abortion &mdash; he has signed anti-abortion laws that have led to the closure of many clinics in his state &mdash; could help Trump in an area where he has struggled to speak to the base.</p> <p><u><strong>Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson</strong></u></p> <p>Trump has said he&rsquo;s looking at an insider to help him bridge the gap to Capitol Hill, which would seem to eliminate Carson from consideration.</p> <p>But Carson is deep inside Trump&rsquo;s inner circle now.</p> <p>Trump told <a href="">The&nbsp;New York Times</a>&nbsp;on Wednesday&nbsp;that Carson will play an important role in the VP search. That would seem to take him off the board, although Dick Cheney had the same charge for President George W. Bush in 2000 and ended up finding himself.</p> <p>Trump and Carson&rsquo;s combined celebrity and penchant for headline-grabbing comments would be off-the-charts.</p> <p>As a candidate, Carson was an internet sensation. He&nbsp;was also a fundraising juggernaut &mdash; an area of campaigning where Trump could use some help.</p> <p>And as the only black man to run for president this year, Carson adds diversity to the ticket.</p> <p><u><strong>Florida Sen. Marco Rubio</strong></u></p> <p>It&rsquo;s hard to envision a Trump-Rubio ticket after the two spent weeks hurling personal insults at one another before Trump finally triumphed over &ldquo;Little Marco.&rdquo;</p> <p>Last week, Rubio appeared to be warming to the idea of Trump, saying the businessman&rsquo;s &ldquo;performance has improved significantly.&rdquo; But in a CNN interview&nbsp;on Tuesday, Rubio spokesman Alex Conant called reports of any détente between the two &ldquo;false.&rdquo;</p> <p>Still, if Rubio believes Clinton must be stopped and that Trump is the only one who can do it, he might reconsider. Rubio&rsquo;s decision not to run for reelection to the Senate has at least freed him up professionally to consider the possibility.</p> <p>Despite his failed presidential bid, Rubio still checks all the boxes as an ideal candidate: He&rsquo;s bright, young, Hispanic, one of the premier conservative communicators and hails from a critical swing state.</p> <p><u><strong>New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie</strong></u></p> <p>The New Jersey governor&rsquo;s decision to back Trump at an early stage shocked and baffled many Washington insiders.</p> <p>He was condemned as an opportunist and a sell-out and someone to be shunned by many mainstream Republicans.</p> <p>Now that gamble might pay off by landing him in the second highest office in the land.</p> <p>Christie doesn&rsquo;t bring a swing state with him, and as the primary showed, he has a large national profile but not much of a base.</p> <p>But Trump prizes loyalty and could reward Christie for being one of the first establishment figures to publicly back him.</p> <p>The New Jersey governor is sharp and charismatic and would be ferocious in his attacks against the Democrats.</p> <p><u><strong>Former Speaker Newt Gingrich</strong></u></p> <p>Trump said&nbsp;Wednesday&nbsp;he&rsquo;s looking for a candidate with &ldquo;great political experience&rdquo;&nbsp;who&nbsp;speaks the language of Washington and will help him with outreach to lawmakers.</p> <p>It would be hard to find a more experienced candidate than former Speaker Newt Gingrich, the architect of the Republican takeover of the House in the 1990s.</p> <p>The Georgia Republican has been advising Trump in private while praising and defending him in public.</p> <p>Gingrich was a surprise insurgent candidate in 2012, winning two states and reminding political watchers that he&rsquo;s a skilled debater and a natural on the campaign trail.</p> <p><u><strong>Florida Gov. Rick Scott</strong></u></p> <p>Trump has said he&rsquo;s considering Scott as a vice presidential candidate.</p> <p>The Florida governor has said he&rsquo;s not interested, but that&rsquo;s a common reponse at this point in the process.</p> <p>Scott, a former healthcare executive, is a business-minded Republican from a state that Trump must carry if he hopes to win the White House.</p> <p>However, Scott&rsquo;s favorability rating is underwater at home. That&rsquo;s led to some awkward public moments, like a viral video of a woman shouting at him in a Starbucks.</p> <p>And Scott didn&rsquo;t exactly stick his neck out for Trump during the&nbsp;Florida&nbsp;primary, sitting on his endorsement until the day after the&nbsp;vote.</p> <p><u><strong>Gen. James &ldquo;Mad Dog&rdquo; Mattis</strong></u></p> <p>Trump is passionate about historical military leaders, often lionizing Gens. George Patton and Douglas MacArthur at campaign rallies while bemoaning the lack of strong leadership in the military today.</p> <p>Mattis, a legendary, straight-talking four-star&nbsp;retired&nbsp;Marine Corps general whose nicknames include &ldquo;Warrior Monk&rdquo; and &ldquo;Mad Dog,&rdquo; might be right up Trump&rsquo;s alley.</p> <p>Mattis hasn&rsquo;t spoken publicly spoken about his thoughts on Trump.</p> <p>Anti-Trump conservatives spent months trying to recruit him to launch an independent bid. He officially removed himself from consideration for a third-party run last week.</p> <p><u><strong>Tennessee Rep. <a href="">Marsha Blackburn</a></strong></u></p> <p>The outspoken Tennessee Republican is a veteran legislator with more than a decade of experience on Capitol Hill.</p> <p>She&rsquo;s vice chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee, a member of the Budget Committee and leading the House investigation into Planned Parenthood.</p> <p>Trump has stumbled on abortion and failed in the eyes of some conservatives as a fierce enough critic of Planned Parenthood.</p> <p>And having a woman on the ticket could be critical for Trump, who will likely face a rival in <a href="">Hillary Clinton</a> eager to highlight his past disparaging remarks about women.</p> <p>Blackburn said she&rsquo;d be open to being Trump&rsquo;s vice president as far back as February, when most lawmakers were loathe to be associated with the businessman.</p> <p><u><strong>South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley</strong></u></p> <p>The South Carolina governor backed Marco Rubio in the open primary and has harshly criticized Trump, even signaling that she wouldn&rsquo;t support him as the nominee.</p> <p>But that was before Trump became the likely nominee.&nbsp;On Wednesday, Haley told Reuters she&rsquo;d support Trump as the nominee, although she sought to tamp down speculation she had any interest in being his vice president.</p> <p>Haley would be on any candidate&rsquo;s vice presidential wish list.</p> <p>The fast-rising GOP star is a young, telegenic, charismatic Indian-American and one of the most popular governors in the country.</p> <p><a href=""><em>Source: The Hill</em></a></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="547" height="262" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Donald Trump Florida Mexico New York Times Ohio Reuters South Carolina White House Thu, 05 May 2016 16:51:39 +0000 Tyler Durden 530582 at Party's Over - High Yield Bond ETF Crushed By Largest Outflows Ever <p><strong>It appears the credit market&#39;s dead-cat-bounce party is over. </strong>Following the almost unprecedented bounce off the February lows, the last few days have seen HYG (the largest high yield bond ETF) tumble back below its 200-day moving average as credit spreads (in IG and HY) start to widen significantly. The driver of this sudden weakness is now clear - <strong>a $2.3bn 4-day outflow which is the most sudden and largest redemption ever</strong>.</p> <p>HYG tumbles below its 20-day moving average after the panic buying off the lows...</p> <p><a href=""><img height="564" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Driven by the largest 4-day cumulative fund outflows ever...</p> <p><a href=""><img height="366" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Which has smashed HYG back to a &#39;zero&#39; premium to NAV as HY spreads push back to 2-month highs. We had argued previously that HYG (and the bond ETFs) had <strong>become cash storage facilities for credit funds unable to find enough cash bonds and new issuance to dump their flows into</strong> and so the massive outflows this last 4 days could be a sign of a preparation for a heavier HY calendar going forward (silver lining) or <strong>perhaps it is just time to get back to cash and reduce exposure after the biggest v-shaped recovery on record </strong>(amid tumbling earnings and macro).</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="1000" height="610" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bond High Yield recovery Thu, 05 May 2016 16:38:49 +0000 Tyler Durden 530581 at A Summary Of The Sheer Political Chaos In Brazil In Under 150 Words <p>By now it should be common knowledge that having suffered an embarrassing impeachment vote last month, the political career of Brazilian president Dilma Rouseff is for all intents and purposes over, even as she refuses to step down. However, what may not be as known is just how corrupt the entire political administration in Brazil currently is, and that includes both those who spearheaded the campaign against her, as well as those who stand to benefit from her ouster.</p> <p>Here, in under 150 words, is the best summary of the utter political chaos and corruption that is playing out behind the scenes in Brazil at this moment.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>A Brazilian Supreme Court justice ruled on Thursday that <strong>the powerful lawmaker who orchestrated the effort to impeach President Dilma Rousseff must step down as he faces graft charges</strong>, ratcheting up tensions in the country.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And in a further blow to Brazil’s scandal-plagued political establishment, Vice President Michel Temer, <strong>the man preparing to take control of the government from Ms. Rousseff, had his conviction on charges of violating limits on campaign financing upheld earlier this week, a ruling that makes him ineligible to run for elected office for eight years</strong>. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The rulings are not expected to save Ms. Rousseff’s presidency. Support for her ouster remains strong in the Senate, which is preparing to vote next week on whether to remove her from office and put her on trial over claims of budgetary manipulation. <strong>But the decisions reflect the potential for greater political turmoil in the country.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><img src="" width="501" height="300" /></p> <p><em>Source: <a href=";action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;clickSource=story-heading&amp;module=second-column-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news&amp;_r=1">NYT</a></em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="460" height="276" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Brazil Corruption Thu, 05 May 2016 16:22:51 +0000 Tyler Durden 530577 at Why Gazprom's 'Monopoly' In Europe Is Far From Over <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Irina Slav via,</em></a></p> <p><strong>The first U.S. shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) arrived in Portugal last week</strong> and Gazprom did not immediately cut its own gas prices for Europe. While European media has hailed the entry of U.S. gas into the market as a game-changer and a monopoly-breaker, <strong>in the short term, nothing has changed at all.</strong></p> <p>Let&rsquo;s first get things straight: <em><strong>Gazprom is not a monopolistic supplier for Europe, though it&rsquo;s often called that</strong></em>. The Russian state giant actually supplies about one-third of the gas that Europe consumes. Norway supplies another quarter; so together, the two countries satisfy less than 60 percent of European gas needs. That&rsquo;s not a monopoly, although the current supply mix means that Gazprom is the single biggest player on the European market.</p> <p><strong>The U.S., on the other hand, has quickly turned into the world&rsquo;s biggest natural gas producer thanks to the shale boom. </strong>With prices pressed down hard by oversupply, U.S. gas producers are looking for international markets&mdash;and Europe is one obvious choice, but not the most lucrative.</p> <p><strong><em>According to <a href="">calculations </a>from one energy industry expert, the price for U.S. LNG landed in Europe could come in at $3.59 per MMBtu. Gazprom&rsquo;s average price this quarter was $180 <a href="">per 1,000 cm3</a>, or about $5.14 per MMBtu.</em></strong></p> <p>Numbers can be misleading, however, as different calculations make different price assumptions as evidenced by an Oxford Institute for Energy Studies estimate for U.S. and Gazprom prices laid out in <a href="">an FT article</a> from February.</p> <p>Now, at first glance things look promising for Cheniere &ndash; the company that shipped LNG to the LNG terminal in Lisbon last week. Its gas is competitive. However, we should not forget that the above calculations are based on a price assumption, which, like all assumptions, allows for a wide margin of error. Still, let&rsquo;s accept the assumption that Cheniere gas is for the moment meaningfully cheaper than Gazprom gas for Europe.</p> <p><u><strong>The most logical move for Gazprom, and the scenario considered most likely by media, is to lower prices in order to preserve its market share, much like Saudi Arabia did with oil.</strong></u></p> <p>Gazprom is <a href="">profitable</a>, and it has long-term contracts with its European clients, as the company&rsquo;s deputy chairman Aleksandr Medvedev <a href="">told</a> RT. Outside these contracts, it could increase production, of course, but can it &ldquo;drown&rdquo; Europe in cheap gas? Perhaps, if it&rsquo;s cheap enough. But such a scenario is not at all certain. After all, the &ldquo;drowning strategy&rdquo; did not exactly do wonders for Saudi Arabia, and it&rsquo;s now taking steps to diversify away from oil. Russia is aware of this.</p> <p><u><strong>But there is something else besides gas prices and Gazprom&rsquo;s flexibility in this respect that could trip up hopeful U.S. gas suppliers looking for new markets in Europe.</strong></u> In three years, a new gas pipeline will come on stream that will supply Caspian gas to Europe. Initially planned to have a capacity of 10 billion cm3 annually, the <a href="">Trans Adriatic Pipeline</a> could eventually accommodate double that amount.</p> <p>Now, that&rsquo;s not a whole lot of gas, compared with the 172.6 billion cubic meters <a href="">supplied</a> by Gazprom to Europe in 2013.<strong> Still, it is a new source of gas for the continent; in other words, a new competitor.</strong></p> <p>Gazprom is being watchful of such developments, in the light of Europe&rsquo;s stated ambition to diversify its natural gas sources. It should also be food for thought for U.S. gas producers: <em><strong>Gazprom has three years to come up with new ways to remain the leader in a market in which it already has a very firm presence.</strong></em></p> <p>Without very strong political support from Europe, U.S. gas producers will be at a disadvantage in a market packed tightly with competitors. <strong>Since consistently low gas prices have left them with less cash for price maneuvering, conquering the European gas market might prove to be a bigger challenge than expected.</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="627" height="271" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Market Share Natural Gas Norway Portugal Saudi Arabia Thu, 05 May 2016 15:56:44 +0000 Tyler Durden 530578 at