Worried about money-printing in China... don't! As China.org reports, an electricity generation plant in China's troubled Henan province is burning banknotes in what appears to be an effort to raise efficiency and reduce toxic emissions. One ton of scrapped banknotes can generate about 660 kWh of electricity, which means around 4,000 tonnes of coal can be saved in the province every year by using this process. Perhaps that is the solution to higher natural gas prices in winter for the US NorthEast... just transfer some banknotes up from The Eccles Building and heat the nation...
We are now far advanced into the third central bank generated bubble of the last two decades, but our monetary politburo has taken no notice whatsoever of its self-evident leading wave. Namely, the massive malinvestments and debt mania in the shale patch.
While there will be much debate over the economic pros and cons to tumbling oil prices (there is no debate if the plunge is confirmed to be the result of a global collapse in demand: that would scream global recession) with a definitive answer unlikely to be forthcoming for at least several quarters, when it comes to corporate profitability the outcome is already known, because between plunging oil prices and the soaring dollar, what is most likely next in store for the US economy may or may not be a full-blown economic recession, but a profit recession seems virtually inevitable.
Nothing screams economic recovery like 2 out of every 5 Americans living paycheck to paycheck. Especially when that number has reportedly increased by 33% since 2012. Perhaps someone should inform these destitute plebs that the stock market is up nearly 45% over the past two years, and after all, nothing says economic success like the 0.01% enriching themselves via fraud and financial engineering.
Having announced its intention to create an alternative to the SWIFT payment system (following calls from Western politicians for SWIFT to cut off Russia - which the 'independent' firm rapidly denied), Russia recently said it would be ready in May. However, it seems the rapid drop in the Ruble (and the Yuan in recent days) has escalated the need for this de-dollarized payment system and, as RT reports, Russia’s Rossiya and SMP banks, which fell under Western sanctions, are among the eight lenders that will start testing the country’s new national payment system on December 15.
Zimbabwe's 90-year-old President Robert Mugabe fired the country's vice president, Joice Mujuru, today. His reasoning for her dismissal after 10 years in office... she is a witch who is plotting to assassinate him. She immediately responded, by radio address, saying she is not a witch (well she would, right?) adding she has "always been a God fearing person and would not and has not resorted to witchcraft to advance [her] political career." Mujuru is the first vice president to be fired since Zimbabwe gained independence in 1980. Her four predecessors all 'died' in office.
Deutsche Bank Is Stumped: The Broad Market Is Ignoring The Bear Market In Energy, "Something Has To Give"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 12/09/2014 18:33 -0400
First the BIS came out with the following stunner when discussing markets: "The highly abnormal is becoming uncomfortably normal. Central banks and markets have been pushing benchmark sovereign yields to extraordinary lows - unimaginable just a few years back. There is something vaguely troubling when the unthinkable becomes routine." And now the routine of the unthinkable has forced Deutsche Bank to look at the unprecedented disconnect between the collapse in energy assets and the general market - which continues its hypnotized, low-volume levitation - and conclude that it makes absolutely no sense: "We find current dislocation between deep distress in Energy assets and marginal reaction in broad market indexes to be inconsistent with each other. Either energy has to rebound noticeably, or it could pull broader market indexes lower. Exceptions to this assessment are rare."
Meet Grgeor MacGregor, "New World" explorer, who in 1822 started the world's first emerging market frenzy selling a current equivalent $5 billion bond at 6% - twice the rate that British government bonds were going for at the time - for a nation that did not exist: Poyais. But there is a nation today that stands just as little chance of paying back its debt as the imaginary Poyais...
There can be only one bond king. And with Gross in cross-asset limbo, that means that the undisputed fixed income crown, for now, goes to the one true monrach Jeffrey Gundlach. And in a few moments, said fixed income royal will be discussing the economy, the markets and his outlook for what he believes may be the best investment strategies and sector allocations, in his latest webcast titled, to borrow Barron's latest headline, "This Time It's Different."
Many global macro factors are coming to a head. Downside in Treasury prices are at minimum limited this week. Treasuries are a safe haven, under-owned, under-loved, with pick up in yield to other sovereigns and denominated in a safer currency. Here is what is worrying the sell-side...
Here we go again! Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have now officially approved 3% down payment mortgages. Having government entities provide low down payment mortgages to people who can’t afford to buy a house is always a good move. Keynesians like Krugman approve wholeheartedly. The housing market will get a nice boost and the working taxpayers will fund the bad debt through Fannie and Freddie. You own Fannie and Freddie. Everyone wins. In case you forgot, the closing costs to sell a house are usually 8% of the home price. So these home buyers are immediately 5% underwater when they move in... "Sometimes I can’t believe I live in a world this f##ked up. And no one notices and no one cares."
Curious how over the past 6 years we got to a point where the market is now so irreparably broken, even the BIS couldn't take it anymore and threw up all over the the world's central bankers? Then look no further than the following chart summarizing 6 years of global central bank liquidity injections that have made it imperative to use quotation marks every time one writes the word "market"
Having already raised rates and devalued the Naira (and widened its trading bands), the Nigerian currency continues to collapse to new record lows as crude crashes lower and lower. Having tumbled 11.5% since oil prices peaked, the Naira is holdinga round 184/USD - over 9% above the new peg and dramatically outside of the new trading bands of +/-5% as it seems capital flight is out of control. That is probably why, as Bloomberg reports, Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has commented that Nigeria won’t resort to printing money or imprudent borrowing as it adjusts to lower prices of oil. “This is not the first time this country has gone through lower oil prices and it will not be the last,” she said - making it very clear that Nigeria is not Zimbabwe (yet).
If China just suffered its biggest market selloff in years, when the plug was pulled on just $200 billion in "shadow banking" assets, let's all hope that Bank of New York and State Street, who among just the two of them control some $55 trillion in custodial, repoable assets, never get any ideas from Beijing...
Two months ago, when the first tremors in the crude market appeared, we wondered, jokingly, if one of the biggest crude bulls, Phibro's (and formerly Citi's uber-well paid trader) Andy Hall was puking blood yet. "Any crude BWICs from Andy Hall yet?" But while we may have been joking, for Andy Hall things were only all too real. So real, in fact, he just lost his job according to Bloomberg.
OIL TRADER ANDREW HALL SAID TO LEAVE PHIBRO BY YR-END: SOURCES
So is Hall's unwind the source of what some say is a relentless, rolling liquidation within the commodity space?