http://www.zerohedge.com/fullrss2.xml/component/option%2Ccom_docman/Itemid%2C200023/gid%2C397/BoomBustBlog/BoomBustBlog/BoomBustBlog/BoomBustBlog/%22http%3A/www.goldcore.com/ie/gold-blog/gold-sell-fed/%2526quot en Twitter Suspends WND For Seth Rich Story http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/twitter-suspends-wnd-seth-rich-story <p>A couple of days ago, WND ran a story entitled "<a href="http://www.wnd.com/2017/05/bombshell-donna-brazile-probing-seth-rich-murder-says-private-eye/">Bombshell: Donna Brazile Warned Off Private Eye On Seth Rich Murder</a>."&nbsp; The story was sourced back to on-the-record quotes provided by Detective Rod Wheeler who was hired by the Rich family shortly after their son's suspicious murder in July 2016.&nbsp; Among other things, Wheeler said that it was former Democratic National Committee interim chairwoman Donna Brazile who allegedly called police and the Rich family and demanded to know why a private investigator was “snooping” into Rich’s death.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>“The high-ranking DNC official that called the police after I inquired about Rich’s case was Donna Brazile,”</strong> veteran homicide detective Rod Wheeler told WND. “Why shouldn’t I reveal who it was?”</p> </blockquote> <p>To promote the story, WND sent the following tweet:</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/25/2017.05.25 - WND 3.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/25/2017.05.25%20-%20WND%203_0.JPG" style="width: 550px; height: 197px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Unfortunately, <strong>Twitter seemed to take issue with the story and sent a message to WND demanding that they "Delete Tweet."</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/25/2017.05.25 - WND 2.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/25/2017.05.25%20-%20WND%202_0.JPG" style="width: 550px; height: 367px;" /></a></p> <p>When they refused, <strong>a follow-up message from Twitter informed WND that their account had been effectively frozen.</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>"We have determined that you have violated the Twitter Rules, so we've temporarily limited some of your account features.&nbsp;</strong> While in this state, you can still browse Twitter, but you're limited to only sending Direct Messages to your followers -<strong> no Tweets, Retweets, or likes."</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/25/2017.05.25 - WND 1.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/05/25/2017.05.25%20-%20WND%201_0.JPG" style="width: 550px; height: 346px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Of course, Twitter refused to highlight which of their rules (which can be found <a href="https://support.twitter.com/articles/18311">here</a>) had been violated when asked by WND.&nbsp; After a quick review, we must admit that we would have a hard time identifying which rule was 'violated' as well.&nbsp; Here is a list of Twitter's "Abusive Behavior" rules...see if you can figure out which of them was violated.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <ul> <li><strong>Violent threats (direct or indirect):</strong> You may not make threats of violence or promote violence, including threatening or promoting terrorism.</li> <li><strong>Harassment:</strong> You may not incite or engage in the targeted abuse or harassment of others. Some of the factors that we may consider when evaluating abusive behavior include: <ul> <li>if a primary purpose of the reported account is to harass or send abusive messages to others;</li> <li>if the reported behavior is one-sided or includes threats;</li> <li>if the reported account is inciting others to harass another account; and</li> <li>if the reported account is sending harassing messages to an account from multiple accounts.</li> </ul> </li> <li><strong>Hateful conduct:</strong> You may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or disease. We also do not allow accounts whose primary purpose is inciting harm towards others on the basis of these categories. </li> <li><strong>Multiple account abuse:</strong> Creating multiple accounts with overlapping uses or in order to evade the temporary or permanent suspension of a separate account is not allowed.</li> <li><strong>Private information: </strong>You may not publish or post other people's private and confidential information, such as credit card numbers, street address, or Social Security/National Identity numbers, without their express authorization and permission. In addition, you may not post intimate photos or videos that were taken or distributed without the subject's consent. Read more about our private information policy here.</li> <li><strong>Impersonation: </strong>You may not impersonate others through the Twitter service in a manner that is intended to or does mislead, confuse, or deceive others. Read more about our impersonation policy here.</li> <li><strong>Self-harm: </strong>You may encounter someone considering suicide or self harm on Twitter. When we receive reports that a person is threatening suicide or self harm, we may take a number of steps to assist them, such as reaching out to that person expressing our concern and the concern of other users on Twitter or providing resources such as contact information for our mental health partners.</li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>But that's not really the point now is it?&nbsp; <strong>Perhaps the reason we can't find the 'rule' that was violated is because Twitter doesn't overtly publish their policy which demands the censoring all media which conflicts with their 'progressive' worldview.</strong></p> <p>Or maybe Twitter simply deemed the story to be 'fake news'?&nbsp; If so, perhaps Twitter could share their evidence that negates the on-the-record quotes reported by WND.&nbsp; Or, maybe Twitter just assumed that an upstanding citizen like Brazile, a woman who destroyed her own integrity by sharing debate questions with Hillary's campaign and subsequently lying about those actions on every media outlet in existence, would never do such a thing. </p> <p>Moreover, if Twitter is now in the business of censoring 'fake news' then perhaps they can explain why our friends at CNN, the New York Times and the Washington Post seem to be able to publish numerous 'fake news' stories, on a daily basis, without consequence?&nbsp; <strong>Remember that whole 'Golden Showers' dossier that CNN pumped relentlessly over Twitter that was subsequently debunked with very minimal efforts...</strong></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Spicer goes first, calls Buzzfeed story on unsubstantiated documents: "outrageous"</p> <p>— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) <a href="https://twitter.com/Acosta/status/819216093780869121">January 11, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">How an unverified but explosive dossier became a crisis for Donald Trump <a href="https://t.co/W1lO6nhni0">https://t.co/W1lO6nhni0</a></p> <p>— The New York Times (@nytimes) <a href="https://twitter.com/nytimes/status/820828260372254721">January 16, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Curiously, we don't remember CNN or Jim Acosta being temporarily suspended for pumping that story.&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="590" height="372" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/Seth%20Rich.JPG?1495713646" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/twitter-suspends-wnd-seth-rich-story#comments BuzzFeed Conservatism in the United States Democratic National Committee Donald Trump Donna Brazile Fake news Journalism Mass media New York Times Social Issues Software Twitter Twitter Twitter WorldNetDaily Thu, 25 May 2017 17:45:35 +0000 Tyler Durden 596623 at http://www.zerohedge.com Trader Terrified Of Moment "Everyone Heads For The Exits" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/trader-terrified-moment-everyone-heads-exits <p><strong><em>&quot;Markets are never wrong&quot;</em></strong> is indisputably correct from a day trader&rsquo;s perspective - the only thing that matters is getting it right about whatever the next price lurch is going to be.&nbsp; People want to know where the orders and stops are. Which way the market&rsquo;s leaning for the algorithms to attack. From this vantage point, Bloomberg&#39;s Richard Breslow notes, <strong>we get all sorts of trading rules that boil down to stressing technical and risk discipline over any notion that understanding the fundamentals is relevant</strong>.</p> <p>And, of course, this has fully ingrained into our psyches that <em><strong>&quot;it&#39;s better to be lucky than smart.&quot;</strong></em></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170524_FOMC1_1.jpg"><img height="318" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170524_FOMC1_1_0.jpg" width="600" /></a></p> <p>Looking at it this way, Breslow explains,<strong> the Fed was dovish in their minutes yesterday. After all, the dollar got hit, bonds jumped, equities leapt. </strong>How could you read it any other way?</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>The only problem is, they weren&rsquo;t.</strong></span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And while the market did a good job of torturing the marginal position holders,<strong> it&rsquo;s a big mistake to make investing decisions based on that mischaracterization.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Central bankers have moved away from a position of wanting investors to respond to their actions rather than their words.</strong> In the past, they tried to be upbeat and optimistic with the tacit understanding that policy would remain in full dovish mode. Icing for the masses and sustenance for the trickle downers.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>They are now trying desperately to get the message out that the world really is changing. To nudge investors toward accepting the coming regime change. <strong>But the people who matter, those that should and have a duty to care about and position for fundamentals, aren&rsquo;t paying attention.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><u><strong>It&rsquo;s going to take a much blunter communication approach than they&rsquo;ve showed the gumption to muster. </strong></u>From experience investors know only too well that hawkish talk has repeatedly turned into hapless bluff at the first sign of asset price distress, the real economy notwithstanding. This is all a potentially huge problem for when inflation, especially wage inflation, eventually makes an appearance.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>A lot of ink has been wasted with reminders of the 1994 market meltdown. <strong>Central bankers, we&rsquo;re told, are going to have to be hyper-careful to avoid a recurrence. </strong>That&rsquo;s an utter misunderstanding of what happened and taking away the worst possible lesson from the event.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>The errors weren&rsquo;t policy mistakes from the Fed or BOE, but from investment banks-turned-hedge funds that refused to listen to what they were being told and fought the tightening cycle every step of the way. </strong>The biggest losses didn&rsquo;t even occur when the policy reversal commenced. They were much later in the year when lessons were only learned as certain firms were looking into the abyss of insolvency.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Of course the one message that was internalized forthwith was <strong>this is a much better game to play with shareholder, rather than partnership, money at stake</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>As Breslow concludes, <strong>this is one of those rare times when the nuance they think they&rsquo;ve perfected should be shelved.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_comp.jpg"><img height="358" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_comp_0.jpg" width="600" /></a></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>The market needs a little preemptive blunt-force trauma. It&rsquo;s not only central bank balance sheets that will need to be normalized. </strong></span></p> <p>And it can&rsquo;t happen with everyone heading for the exits at the same time.</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="964" height="511" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170524_FOMC1_0.jpg?1495720896" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/trader-terrified-moment-everyone-heads-exits#comments Bank of England BOE Business Financial market Inflation Meltdown Trading Rules US Federal Reserve Thu, 25 May 2017 17:23:31 +0000 Tyler Durden 596631 at http://www.zerohedge.com Mediocre, Tailing 5Y Auction Prints At 7 Month Low Yield http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/mediocre-tailing-5y-auction-prints-7-month-low-yield <p>If yesterday's 5Y auction saw blistering buyside demand, and was the first 5Y auction to avoid tailing in 2017, today's 7Y left much to be desired.</p> <p> Printing with a high yield of 2.06%, the auction tailed modestly to the 2.058% When Issued, the first tail since September. This was the lowest yield on the 7Y tenor since October's 1.653%, and below the 6 auction average of 2.222%.&nbsp; </p> <p>The Bid to Cover of 2.54 disappointed, printing below last month's 2.733, and also below the 6-auction average of 2.58. </p> <p>Finally, the internals were also mixed, with Indirects taking down 61.2%, a steep drop from last month's record 81.7%, although the decline was offset by jump in Directs, which rose from 9.5% to 17.2%, 70% above the 6 month average of 10.7%, and leaving 21.6% to Dealers, just above the 18.3% 6MMA. </p> <p>Overall, a mediocre auction and certainly a disappointment from yesterday's stellar 5 Year auction, although hardly a disaster, and as a result the curve is little changed after the auction.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/7Y%20May%202017.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/7Y%20May%202017_0.jpg" width="500" height="283" /></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="1525" height="864" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/7Y%20May%202017.jpg?1495732410" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/mediocre-tailing-5y-auction-prints-7-month-low-yield#comments 5Y 7Y Auction Auction theory Auctions Bid-to-cover ratio Business Economy High Yield Human Interest Thu, 25 May 2017 17:13:40 +0000 Tyler Durden 596646 at http://www.zerohedge.com Bitcoin Is Crashing http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/bitcoin-crashing <p>What goes up exponentially, falls vertically... or something like that...</p> <p>Bitcoin has plunged 13% in the last few minutes... no catalyst evident for now...</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_btc_1.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_btc_1_0.jpg" width="600" height="420" /></a></p> <p>Bear in mind this plunge merely corrects to the highs of yesterday.</p> <p>And, in context, it's a fleshwound...</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_btc_2.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_btc_2_0.jpg" width="600" height="405" /></a></p> <p>BITCOIN EXCHANGE COINBASE SAYS <em><strong>"WE'RE CONTINUING TO EXPERIENCE DEGRADED PERFORMANCE ON OUR WEBSITE AND MOBILE APP"</strong></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="1206" height="844" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170525_btc_0.jpg?1495731377" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/bitcoin-crashing#comments Alternative currencies Bitcoin Bitcoin Coinbase Cryptocurrencies Currency Financial technology Numismatics Thu, 25 May 2017 16:57:16 +0000 Tyler Durden 596645 at http://www.zerohedge.com Travel To US Has Tumbled 16% Since Trump Took Office, Foursquare Says http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/foursquare-says-travel-us-down-16-trump-took-office <p>Social-media company Foursquare has crunched the data generated by its <strong>50 million active monthly users and determined that America’s share of the international tourism market has fallen sharply since October.</strong></p> <p>According to <a href="https://medium.com/foursquare-direct/coming-to-america-528312934221">data published on the company’s blog,</a> visits by foreigners to the U.S.&nbsp; started to decline in October, when they fell by 6% year-over-year. <strong>The decline has continued through March 2017, the latest month for which Foursquare has data, when visits declined by an astounding 16%.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/foursquare.JPG"><strong><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/foursquare_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 250px;" /></strong></a></p> <p>One quick point of clarification: <strong><em>These data don’t measure the absolute number of visitors to the U.S., but rather America’s “market share” – its popularity as a destination for travelers relative to the rest of the world.</em></strong></p> <p>Official data published by the National Travel and Tourism Office also suggest that the number of foreign visitors to the U.S. declined last year from the record highs reached in 2015, but the NTTO has only supplied data through August.</p> <p>Foursquare categorized each traveler as either “business” or “leisure” depending on the types of locations they visited. By breaking down the totals for each subgroup, Foursquare found that<strong> leisure travel has experienced the largest decline, having fallen nearly 20% in March on a year-over-year basis,</strong> while business travel during the same period was essentially flat.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/foursquaretwo.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/foursquaretwo_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 250px;" /></a></p> <p>The data also suggest that <strong>travelers from the Middle East and South America are avoiding the U.S. </strong>in larger numbers than are travelers from Europe and Asia, which brings us to the obvious implications of this study: <strong>Is the dip in tourism Trump’s fault?</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/fbviolencethree.JPG"><strong><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/2017/05/18/foursquarethree_0.JPG" style="width: 500px; height: 251px;" /></strong></a></p> <p>In the post, Foursquare contends that the dollar’s rise against the euro over the past two quarters was probably too small to have such an outsize impact on the tourism figures. <strong>Therefore, it’s more likely that Trump’s “heated campaign rhetoric” is the primary reason for the decline in tourism.</strong></p> <p>But it’s worth remembering that foreign visitors – especially leisure travelers - typically plan their trips several quarters – if not several years – in advance. Therefore, measuring the dollar’s performance over the past two quarters probably isn’t sufficient.</p> <p>Looking back to the second half of 2014, the ICE Dollar index, which measures the dollar’s strength against a basket of rivals like the euro, increased by nearly 25% after the Federal Reserve revealed that it would soon begin raising interest rates.</p> <p><strong>In the years that followed the financial crisis, the dollar was relatively cheap compared with its main rivals (i.e. the euro). Now it’s not. So, it should come as no surprise that international visits to the U.S. are falling.</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="1903" height="952" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user245717/imageroot/foursquare.JPG?1495720990" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/foursquare-says-travel-us-down-16-trump-took-office#comments Business East America Federal Reserve Foursquare Geosocial networking Hospitality ICE Dollar International tourism Middle East Middle East National Travel and Tourism Office Software South America Tourism US Federal Reserve Thu, 25 May 2017 16:46:09 +0000 Tyler Durden 596629 at http://www.zerohedge.com Another Rigged Market: Scientific Study Finds Systemic VIX Auction Manipulation http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/another-rigged-market-scientific-study-finds-systemic-vix-auction-manipulation <p><strong>To the list of &#39;rigged&#39; markets (e.g. Libor, FX, Silver, Treasuries...) we can now add VIX</strong> (which explains a lot) as <a href="https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2972979">two University of Texas at Austin finance professors</a> find<strong><em> &quot;large transient deviations in VIX prices&quot;</em></strong> around the morning auction,<strong><em> &quot;consistent with market manipulation.&quot;</em></strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_vix1.jpg"><strong><em><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_vix1_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 353px;" /></em></strong></a></p> <p><a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2017-05-24/vix-trading-hoaxes-and-blockchain">As Bloomberg reports</a>, in addition to being an index that is much quoted in articles about market complacency, the <strong>VIX is used as a reference price for derivatives</strong>: If you want to bet that stock-market volatility will go up, or down, you can buy or sell futures or options on the VIX. These products are cash settled: The VIX is not a thing you can own, so if your option ends up in the money you just get paid cash for the value of the VIX at settlement. <strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p><strong>CBOE gets an official settlement level of the VIX based on a special monthly settlement auction of S&amp;P 500 options</strong>. The auction runs from 7:30 a.m to 8:30 a.m., Chicago time. Traders submit bids and offers for S&amp;P 500 options, the auction matches buyers and sellers to find clearing prices, and the prices of those S&amp;P 500 options are used to compute the official settlement level of the VIX.</p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Guess what?</strong></span></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>At the settlement time of the VIX Volatility Index, volume spikes on S&amp;P 500 Index (SPX) options, but only in out-of-the-money options that are used to calculate the VIX, and more so for options with a higher and discontinuous influence on VIX.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>We investigate alternative explanations of hedging and coordinated liquidity trading. Tests including those utilizing differences in put and call options, open interest around the settlement, and a similar volatility contract with an entirely different settlement procedure in Europe are inconsistent with these explanations but <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>consistent with market manipulation.</strong></span></p> </blockquote> <p>That&#39;s from&nbsp;<a href="https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2972979" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank">this paper</a>&nbsp;by John Griffin and Amin Shams of the University of Texas, who find a lot of trading in the S&amp;P 500 options underlying the VIX during these settlement auctions, trading that pushes&nbsp;the settlement price of the VIX up or down. So for instance in months where the trading pushes the VIX up, <strong>the prevailing price of the VIX-influencing options will jump during the auction, peak at around 8:15 a.m. (the deadline for VIX-related bids in the auction), and then drop seconds after the auction ends&nbsp;when the options start trading normally:</strong></p> <p><img height="365" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_VIX_0.png" width="600" /></p> <p>The blue line there is a measure of the indicative prices of VIX-influencing options, spiking at 8:00 a.m. and peaking near 8:15. <em>(If you ignore the numbers on the axis, you can almost think of it as being a chart of the VIX price.)</em> The <strong>red dot is the trading price of those options about 25 seconds after the auction finishes.</strong></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>The average effect is something like 0.31 VIX points, sometimes up and sometimes down, depending on the month. </strong></span></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>&nbsp;</strong></span><strong>What is going on? </strong>Usually when you see patterns like this, the innocent explanation is hedging. But Griffin and Shams consider and reject that notion here, noting for instance that traders don&#39;t seem to be closing out existing hedge positions but instead adding new ones. They argue that it&#39;s more likely to be explained by attempts to move the VIX:<strong><em> If you are a dealer who is long (short) VIX futures, you can push up (down) the VIX at settlement by buying (selling) some deep-out-of-the-money S&amp;P 500 options.</em></strong></p> <p>That is generically true in any derivatives market: If you are long a derivative, you can buy the underlying and push up the derivative price. But Griffin and Shams give a list of reasons why you&#39;d almost expect the VIX to be manipulated:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>First, the upper-level VIX market is large and liquid, enabling a trader to invest a sizeable position in VIX derivatives.<strong> In contrast, many of the lower-level SPX options, where the VIX values are derived from, are illiquid.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Griffin and Shams calculate that<strong><em> &quot;the size of VIX futures with open interest at settlement is on average 5.7 times the size SPX options traded at settlement, and it is 7.3 times for VIX options that are in-the-money at settlement.&quot; </em></strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_vix2.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/05/23/20170525_vix2_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 368px;" /></a></p> <p>So if you are a trader who owns a lot of the market in VIX futures, you could push around a large dollar value of futures by trading a small dollar value in options. This is particularly true because the S&amp;P option volume is divided among many strikes, and the illiquid deep out-of-the-money S&amp;P 500 options have a big influence on the VIX: You can move the price of those options a lot with relatively small trades, and those price changes have a disproportionate effect on the VIX.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Second, the VIX derivatives are cash settled. Therefore,<strong> if the VIX settlement value deviates from its true value, the VIX position will automatically be cashed out at the deviated price.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>If cattle are trading at the wrong price when your cattle futures settle, that doesn&#39;t matter so much, because you just get the cattle. But you can&#39;t just get the VIX: You get cash, so if the VIX is at the wrong price at settlement, that&#39;s the price you get.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>Third, the settlement occurs within a short period of time based on the SPX options pre-open auction.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>You don&#39;t have to intervene over some long period to keep options prices up; you can just submit bids in the pre-opening auction once a month and move the settlement price for that month.</p> <p><u><strong>There is a sort of hierarchy of manipulability in markets. </strong></u>At the top is Libor manipulation: Trillions of dollars of derivatives settled based on Libor, but Libor was calculated by essentially asking banks &quot;what should Libor be?&quot; The banks didn&#39;t even have to do any trading in order to push the number around; manipulation was, in effect, costless. (Later, with the fines, it was costly.)</p> <p>At the bottom is, like, manipulating the price of a stock by trading that stock. There are cases of it! It&#39;s a thing. But it is a dumb thing; it really shouldn&#39;t work. If you buy a stock, you will push the price up, sure. But to make any money you then have to sell the stock, which should push the price right back down.</p> <p>But <strong>if you are going to manipulate a tradable market</strong> -- as opposed to a made-up one like Libor -- then <strong>VIX looks pretty tempting. </strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The product that you trade (S&amp;P 500 options) is different from the product where you make your money (VIX futures and options), and the trading market is in the relevant sense smaller than the derivative market: You can move a lot of value in VIX products by trading a small amount of value, in a confined period of time, in the underlying market. So you can cheerfully lose money executing the manipulation -- trading the S&amp;P options -- and make back more in the derivative.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>If Griffin and Shams are right that there&#39;s manipulation, there&#39;s no particular pattern to it: Sometimes VIX gets anomalously pushed up during the settlement, sometimes down. </strong>That&#39;s consistent with, for instance, a story of big dealers adding up their positions before each monthly settlement, realizing that they&#39;re net long (short), and trying to push VIX up (down) to help out their positions.<strong> It would be like the kind of Libor manipulation that banks did to help out their trading books (which was up or down depending on their positions) -- not the kind of Libor manipulation that banks also did to disguise their funding costs (which moved Libor systematically down).</strong></p> <p><a href="https://blogs.wsj.com/moneybeat/2017/05/25/are-traders-manipulating-the-vix/">Finally, The Wall Street Journal notes </a>that it is, of course, tough to rule out the possibility that something more benign is going on. For example, investors who had used the expiring derivatives to protect themselves could be seeking replacement protection when they participate in the auction, some say. <em><strong>Messrs. Griffin and Shams believe it&rsquo;s not hedging activity due to the trading patterns they observed.</strong></em></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Full Study below:</strong></span></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="600" scrolling="no" src="https://www.scribd.com/embeds/349404720/content?start_page=1&amp;view_mode=scroll&amp;access_key=key-rUczo8tJvvz0BAUfHtbC&amp;show_recommendations=true" width="100%"></iframe></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="842" height="517" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170525_vix2.jpg?1495717677" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/another-rigged-market-scientific-study-finds-systemic-vix-auction-manipulation#comments Business CBOE Chicago Board Options Exchange Economy Finance Futures contract LIBOR Libor Market Manipulation Mathematical finance Money Option S&P S&P 500 S&P 500 Index Technical analysis University of Texas University of Texas at Austin VIX VIX Volatility Volatility Volatility Wall Street Journal Thu, 25 May 2017 16:26:49 +0000 Tyler Durden 596622 at http://www.zerohedge.com Junk Bonds; Dual upside breakout taking place! http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/junk-bonds-dual-upside-breakout-taking-place <p><img src="https://www.kimblechartingsolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/junk-in-the-trunk-pic.jpg" style="user-select: none; background-position: 0px 0px, 10px 10px; background-size: 20px 20px; background-image: linear-gradient(45deg, #eeeeee 25%, transparent 25%, transparent 75%, #eeeeee 75%, #eeeeee 100%), linear-gradient(45deg, #eeeeee 25%, white 25%, white 75%, #eeeeee 75%, #eeeeee 100%); display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" /></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">So Goes Junk, So Goes Stocks? Most of the time this is true. Stocks historically want to see Junk moving higher, not diverging against them.</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">Below looks at Junk Bond ETF&nbsp;<a href="https://finance.yahoo.com/quote/JNK?p=JNK" style="box-sizing: border-box; background: transparent; color: #2ea3f2; outline: 0px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; outline: 0px; background: transparent;">JNK</strong></a>&nbsp;over the past few years.</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;"><a href="https://www.kimblechartingsolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/junk-breaking-out-of-dual-resistance-may-25-1.jpg" target="_blank" title="Junk Bonds; Dual upside breakout taking place! kimble charting solutions"><img src="https://www.kimblechartingsolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/junk-breaking-out-of-dual-resistance-may-25-1.jpg" alt="barclays high yield bond kimble charting solutions." title="junk bonds;dual upside breakout taking place" width="1000" style="background-position: 0px 0px, 10px 10px; background-size: 20px 20px; background-image: linear-gradient(45deg, #eeeeee 25%, transparent 25%, transparent 75%, #eeeeee 75%, #eeeeee 100%), linear-gradient(45deg, #eeeeee 25%, white 25%, white 75%, #eeeeee 75%, #eeeeee 100%); display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" /></a></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif; text-align: center;"><span style="box-sizing: border-box; outline: 0px; background: transparent; color: #0000ff;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; outline: 0px; background: transparent;">CLICK ON CHART TO ENLARGE</strong></span></p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">JNK started heading lower back in 2014, diverging against stocks, sending a concerning message to them. JNK hit a low in February of last year and has been heading higher ever since, sending a positive message to stocks.</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">JNK for the past&nbsp;few months has chopped sideways, just below 2-year falling resistance, which looks to be the top of a narrowing pennant pattern. At the same time it was dealing with pennant pattern resistance, it looks to have formed a bullish ascending triangle (flat top and rising bottoms).</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">At this time JNK is working on a dual breakout of the pennant and ascending triangle at (1). Even thought Junk Bonds yields are low at this time and a concern to some, historically this type of price action is NOT a concerning message for stocks!</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">To send a concerning message to stocks, Junk needs to break back below dual support and diverge against stocks, which at this time, is not happening.</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 0px; padding-bottom: 1em; outline: 0px; background-image: initial; background-position: initial; background-size: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; background-origin: initial; background-clip: initial; font-size: 14px; color: #303030; font-family: &quot;Open Sans&quot;, Arial, sans-serif;">If you would like to stay informed of the Power of the Patterns thoughts in the Junk bond market or what our “Shoe Box” indicator is suggesting for investors to do, we would be honored if you were a&nbsp;<a href="https://www.kimblechartingsolutions.com/premium-bundle/" style="box-sizing: border-box; background: transparent; color: #2ea3f2; outline: 0px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; outline: 0px; background: transparent;">Premium</strong></a>&nbsp;or&nbsp;<a href="https://www.kimblechartingsolutions.com/global-dashboard/" style="box-sizing: border-box; background: transparent; color: #2ea3f2; outline: 0px;"><strong style="box-sizing: border-box; outline: 0px; background: transparent;">Global Dashboards</strong></a>&nbsp;member. 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margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-variant-numeric: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.3; font-family: lucida_granderegular, Verdana, sans-serif;">&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-blog"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_blog" width="1293" height="674" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user182769/imageroot/junk-breaking-out-of-dual-resistance-may-25-1.jpg?1495728549" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/junk-bonds-dual-upside-breakout-taking-place#comments Bond Bond C-Jun N-terminal kinases Chart patterns Economy Finance High-yield debt Junk Money Naval history of China Price Action Technical analysis Triangle Thu, 25 May 2017 16:09:10 +0000 kimblecharting 596641 at http://www.zerohedge.com Bomb Detonates Inside Car Of Former Greek Prime Minister And Central Banker Papademos http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/bomb-detonates-inside-car-former-greek-prime-minister-and-central-banker-papademos <p>Greek <a href="http://www.naftemporiki.gr/story/1239514/bomb-blast-targets-former-greek-pm-papademos-car-one-injury-reported">media reports that </a>an explosion targeting the car of former Greek prime minister and central banker Lucas Papademos was reported on Thursday afternoon, at roughly 6.30 p.m. local time, in central Athens. <a href="http://www.naftemporiki.gr/story/1239514/bomb-blast-targets-former-greek-pm-papademos-car-one-injury-reported">According to Naftemporiki </a>Papademos <strong>was transferred to an Athens hospital after what appeared to<br /> be a letter bomb explosion inside the armored-plated car where he was a<br /> passenger.</strong></p> <p>Reuters confirms:</p> <ul> <li>EXPLOSIVE DEVICE DETONATES INSIDE CAR OF FORMER GREEK CENTRAL BANKER LUCAS PAPADEMOS, INJURING HIM AND HIS DRIVER- GREEK POLICE</li> </ul> <p>One injury was reported, with the first indications pointing to the vehicle's driver. The incident took place in central Athens, a few blocks from the Athens Polytechnic in a central part of the city.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BREAKING?src=hash">#BREAKING</a> - Blast in central <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Athens?src=hash">#Athens</a> reportedly involving a car carrying former Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AthensLive?src=hash">#AthensLive</a> <a href="https://t.co/08n4zWJdfc">pic.twitter.com/08n4zWJdfc</a></p> <p>— AthensLive GR (@AthensLiveGr) <a href="https://twitter.com/AthensLiveGr/status/867771794949902336">May 25, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>Accoridng to media reports, Papademos opened a letter bomb, injuring himself and his driver. Both were rushed to Greece's largest hospital Evangelismos<em>.</em><em></em></p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Police guard accompanying PAPADEMOS also injured.</p> <p>— George Gilson (@ggathens) <a href="https://twitter.com/ggathens/status/867772950459465729">May 25, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>The former central banker and ECB vice-president was reportedly injured in the abdomen, according to local media reports, and was currently undergoing surgery.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en"><a href="https://twitter.com/eucopresident">@eucopresident</a> You told the Greek leader "game over"? The fate of a nation is no game sir! Aren't you a bit rude for a relative EU newcomer?</p> <p>— George Gilson (@ggathens) <a href="https://twitter.com/ggathens/status/614259276039766016">June 26, 2015</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>The vehicle was driven by a police escort, while another unmarked police vehicle followed.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/greek%20explosion.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/greek%20explosion_0.jpg" width="500" height="266" /></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="638" height="340" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/greek%20explosion.jpg?1495729780" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/bomb-detonates-inside-car-former-greek-prime-minister-and-central-banker-papademos#comments Athens Athens hospital European Central Bank European Union Evangelismos Government of Greece Greece Greek government-debt crisis Lucas Lucas Papademos Reuters Twitter Twitter Thu, 25 May 2017 16:03:31 +0000 Tyler Durden 596639 at http://www.zerohedge.com Fed Trial Balloon: JPM Warns Fed May Start Shrinking Balance Sheet In September http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/fed-trial-balloon-jpm-warns-fed-may-start-shrinking-balance-sheet-september <p>It appears the Fed's balance sheet "trial balloons" using primary dealers as intermediaries have begun. </p> <p>After yesterday's unexpectedly explicit guidance on the future of the Fed's balance sheet, which prompted Goldman, Citi, and various other banks to suggest they may bring forward their estimates for when the Fed will announce the start of "renormalization", moments ago JPM's Michael Feroli, traditionally the analysts "closest" to the Fed, did just that when he issued a report stating that that there is now "<strong>chance of a September start" </strong>to renormalization, with the values for monthly roll-off caps and phase-in period to be "revealed at the June FOMC meeting."</p> <p>According to Feroli, JPM continues to look for normalization to commence at the December FOMC meeting but "<strong>there is some chance of a September start</strong>, though this would not have a material difference for our projections on a multi-year horizon. At the meeting at which normalization starts we expect the Committee to announce a set of monthly roll-off caps for the following year, which increase regularly every three months. </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>"<strong>Our best guess is that the initial caps are $4 billion a month for MBS and $8 billion a month for US Treasuries. </strong>In the preannounced schedule, these caps would be augmented each quarter by $4 billion and $8 billion, respectively, <strong>until at the end of the year they are $16 billion and $32 billion. </strong>Consistent with yesterday’s minutes, even after the normalization process is fully phased in the monthly caps will still be in place, though in most months after the full phase-in they would cease to bind."</p> </blockquote> <p>And here are the finer details which the Fed may or may not have leaked to select banks, in an attempt to prepare for what is coming, and talking down the equity bubble: </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>The Committee has yet to communicate values for the monthly caps or the length of the phase-in period. Presumably they will do this in the minutes to the June FOMC meeting. </strong>It is less clear that the Committee will have decided on a monetary policy implementation framework by the time roll-off begins (i.e. the current ratesetting system vs reverting to the pre-2008 system) and hence whether they will have decided on an ultimate amount of excess reserves available when the balance sheet is fully normalized. <strong>We have assumed a $500 billion target for excess reserves in our projections below. The other key assumption on the liability side of the Fed’s balance sheet is currency growth, which we have penciled in at 4% per year</strong>.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/jpm%20balance%20sheet%20rev.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/jpm%20balance%20sheet%20rev_0.jpg" width="500" height="502" /></a></p> <p>Under these assumptions the balance sheet is fully normalized in late 2021 at a level close to $3.0 trillion, down from about $4.5 trillion now. After normalization the Fed would turn to become a net buyer of&nbsp; Treasuries, at a pace of around $400 billion per year, partly to meet growing demand for currency and partly to replace MBS which will continue to roll off the balance sheet. During the normalization process we see the funds rate as the tool of first resort for adjusting policy to both economic strength and weakness, unless the funds rate returns to the effective lower bound around zero, at which point roll-offs would stop. This latter eventuality is a risk for normalization being completed later than we anticipate.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/jpm%20bs%202.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/jpm%20bs%202_0.jpg" width="500" height="593" /></a></p> </blockquote> <p>Mechanistic questions about the impact of this a Quantitative Tightening on asset prices aside (it will be very bearish as the market will realize soon), we remind reader what former Fed governor Kevin Warsh said about the Fed's normalization "policy" <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-05/former-fed-governor-warsh-asks-what-could-possibly-go-wrong-answers">several weeks ago</a>.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>I am confused by the Fed’s ‘normalization’ strategy in monetary policy. Its preferred sequencing of rate increases and balance sheet reductions differ markedly from what was agreed when we conceived QE in the ’war room’ amid the crisis. There might be good reason. But, the transmission mechanisms of rate changes and balance sheet adjustments are markedly different than projected. So too are the distributional effects. This merits a more robust public explanation.</p> </blockquote> <p>Alas, a public explanation will not be provided.</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="604" height="355" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/Fed%20balance%20sheet%20projections%20teaser.jpg?1495727212" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/fed-trial-balloon-jpm-warns-fed-may-start-shrinking-balance-sheet-september#comments Banking Business Database normalization Economy Excess Reserves Excess reserves Fed Governor Kevin Warsh Federal Open Market Committee Federal Reserve System Finance Financial services Monetary Policy Monetary policy Money Normalization US Federal Reserve Warsh Thu, 25 May 2017 15:56:37 +0000 Tyler Durden 596638 at http://www.zerohedge.com Sean Hannity Takes "Abrupt Vacation" Amid Advertiser Boycott http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/sean-hannity-takes-abrupt-vacation-amid-advertiser-boycott <p>Is Fox News about to lose its last remaining "old school" anchor holdout?&nbsp; </p> <p>According to <a href="http://www.philly.com/philly/news/politics/Sean-Hannity-Fox-News-Seth-Rich-advertiser-boycott-vacation.html">Philly.com</a>, Hannity is taking "<em>a couple days off amid a growing advertiser boycott</em>" over Hannity's pursuit of the Seth Rich story - an parallel to Bill O'Reilly's final days - and so far, seven advertisers are said to have pulled out of Hannity’s show.&nbsp; </p> <p>Cars.com was the first advertiser to announce it was pulling ads, telling Buzzfeed News on Wednesday afternoon that “we’ve been watching closely and have recently made the decision to pull our advertising from Hannity.” It was followed by exercise bike company Peloton (which just closed a $325M Series E round financing), Leesa Sleep; mattress retailer Casper, insurance company USAA; home security equipment maker Ring and Crowne Plaza Hotels, all of which announced they would be redirecting their ad buys from Hannity’s shows.</p> <p>Meanwhile, the Five host Kimberly Guilfoyle, who has confirmed speaking to the White House about potentially replacing press secretary Sean Spicer, <strong>will be filling in on Hannity on Thursday and Friday</strong>. </p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/kimberly%20guilfoyle.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/05/12/kimberly%20guilfoyle_0.jpg" width="500" height="333" /></a></p> <p><em>Kimberly Guilfoyle</em></p> <p>Preempting speculation about a possible permanent departure, Hannity announced on Twitter the vacation was his annual Memorial Day getaway, and said "Uh oh My ANNUAL Memorial Day long weekend starts NOW. Destroy Trump/Conservative media breathless coverage starts! Did Hannity do last show?"</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Uh oh My ANNUAL Memorial Day long weekend starts NOW. Destroy Trump/Conservative media breathless coverage starts! Did Hannity do last show?</p> <p>— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) <a href="https://twitter.com/seanhannity/status/867577957124108289">May 25, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js"></script><p>According to Philly.com, it is unclear if Hannity will still host his syndicated radio show on Thursday and Friday, which airs at 6 p.m. in Philadelphia on 1210 WPHT. </p> <p>In any case, as noted above, so far the timeline of events surrounding Hannity is strikingly similar to how events unfolded for former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly, who following a New York Times report that revealed O’Reilly paid five former Fox News personalities $13 million to settle claims of sexual and verbal harassment, took an abrupt vacation amid a growing exodus of advertisers from his show. Despite assurances from the network that the vacation was pre planed, Fox News fired O’Reilly eight days later.</p> <p>In interviews with Philly.com, Fox News contributor Julie Roginsky slammed the network, calling it “really egregious” to allow Hannity, Gingrich and others to discuss the death of Seth Rich.&nbsp; “We know the facts. Wikileaks was in collaboration with the Russians,” Roginsky said.“How do we know this? Because the entire intelligence community said that the Russians were the ones who hacked into these emails. This is not in dispute.” </p> <p>Well, actualy it is because 5 months later the so called entire intelligence community hasn't presented one schred of evidence yet as <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-11/ron-paul-no-evidence-russian-intrusion-us-political-system">Ron Paul has repeatedly, patiently, and lofically pointed out</a>.</p> <p>What is <strong>not </strong>in dispute, however, is that if Hannity were to also leave Fox - the last of the original anchor line-up that boosted Fox News to the top of the ratings charts - the Nielsen chart of Rupert Murdoch's organization, already in tailspin, will move from the upper left to the bottom right, to quote Gartman, as traditional viewers continue to bail for alternative outlets. </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="273" height="133" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170525_hannity.jpg?1495720659" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-05-25/sean-hannity-takes-abrupt-vacation-amid-advertiser-boycott#comments Conservatism in the United States Conservative talk radio Entertainment Environmental skepticism Fox News Fox News Hannity New York Times Nielsen Politics of the United States ratings Ron Paul Sean Hannity Television Television in the United States The Five Twitter Twitter White House White House Thu, 25 May 2017 15:49:59 +0000 Tyler Durden 596624 at http://www.zerohedge.com