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Administration Updates Congress On "Obamacare Fixed By End Of November" Promise - Live Webcast

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa leads yet another hearing on the Obamacare implementation and the rollout of The Committee will examine the operational challenges in the development of and the extent to which recognized Information Technology (IT) best practices were followed. This one should be fun since its the techies answering the questions - US CTO Todd Park and Deputy CIO Henry Chao answering the questions...

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Euro Tumbles After ECB Hints At QE

Despite the ECB's recent "stunning" rate cut, which sent the EUR modestly lower by a few hundred pips, the resultant resurge in the European currency has left the European Central Bank even more stunned: just what does it have to do to force its currency lower and boost Europe's peripheral economies, especially in a world in which every other major central banks is printing boatloads of money each and every month. We hinted at precisely what the next steps will be two days ago when in "Next From The ECB: Here Comes QE, According To BNP" we said "BNP is ultimately correct as the European experiment will require every weapon in the ECB's arsenal, and sooner or later the ECB, too, will succumb to the same monetary lunacy that has gripped the rest of the developed world in the ongoing "all in" bet to reflate or bust. All logical arguments that outright monetization of bonds are prohibited by various European charters will be ignored: after all, there is "political capital" at stake, and as Mario Draghi has made it clear there is no "Plan B." Which means the only question is when will Europe join the lunaprint asylum: for the sake of the systemic reset we hope the answer is sooner rather than later." Two days later, the answer just appeared when moments ago the WSJ reported that the ECB hinted more QE is, as we predicted, on the table.

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"Frustrated" Liquidity Addicts Demand Moar From BOJ As Nikkei Rally Stalls, Abenomics Founders And "Hope Fades"

While the only topic of discussion for "sophisticated" investors everywhere is when (and if) the Fed will ever dare to reduce its monthly flow injection into US markets from $85 billion to a paltry $75 billion, everyone has forgotten that across the Pacific, for the past seven months the BOJ has been calmly injecting another $75 billion each and every month into the market, with no risk of this liquidity boost ever being tapered (since the broad 2% inflation target relies on ever broader wage increases that will never come). However, much to Japan's chagrin, in the current insta-globally fungible capital markets, over the past five months the bulk of this liquidity has found its way to the US stock bubble, leaving the Nikkei in the dust. As a result, the local Japanese liquidity junkies have started to loudly complain once again, and now the FT reports that "as excitement over the world’s second-biggest stock market has faded, some are now crying out for another jump-start." In other words: the BOJ must do "moar" to push the Nikkei bubble even higher following its rangebound trade since May which, worst of all, is now the primary reason why "hope is fading."

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Europe Follows US In Demanding Germany Explain Its Exporting Ways

As we discussed two weeks ago, it would appear Germany's lack of willingness to throw itself on the pyre of self-sacrifice and not adopt a global Fairness Doctrine - as engendered by the US Treasury's (and IMF's) bashing of the core European nation's for maintaining its export strength and daring to keep Europe in tact and thus a periphery-damaging strong Euro - is gathering steam. None other than Europe itself is now 'probing' Germany's trade surplus, using enhanced powers over how euro nations manage their economies with the IMF urging German Chancellor Angela Merkel to curtail the trade surplus to an “appropriate rate” to help euro  partners cut deficits.

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Markets In Turmoil - Stocks Sliding As Bitcoin Tops $400

With a shiny red ballon dog selling for $58 million, perhaps it was time to take a little profit in the equity exuberance. S&P futures are down 9 points from last night's close - which in the new normal is considerable (sadly) - with no macro data headlines this morning to spark a move, we will be watching JPY (which for now is rallying awkwardly) for signs of ignition. Meanwhile, as the USD flatlines (despite dispersion in FX), Bitcoin just toppped $400 for the first time ever - doubling in the last two weeks. Precious metals are up modestly; treasury yields are limping lower; and European equities (and sovereign bonds) are having another tough day.

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Vietnam Shows How To Clean Up The Banking System: Ex-Banker Faces Death Penalty For Fraud

The lack of prosecution of bankers responsible for the great financial collapse has been a hotly debated topic over the years, leading to the coinage of such terms as "Too Big To Prosecute", the termination of at least one corrupt DOJ official, the revelation that Eric Holder is the most useless Attorney General in history, and even members of the judicial bashing other members of the judicial such as in last night's essay by district judge Jed Rakoff. And naturally, the lack of incentives that punish cheating and fraud, is one of the main reasons why such fraud will not only continue but get bigger and bigger, until once again, the entire system crashes under the weight of all the corruption and all the Fed-driven malinvestment. But what can be done? In this case, Vietnam may have just shown America the way - use the death penalty on convicted embezzling bankers. Because if one wants to promptly stop an end to financial crime, there is nothing quite like the fear of death to halt it.

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Frontrunning: November 13

  • Desperate Philippine typhoon survivors loot, dig up water pipes (Reuters)
  • Fading Japanese market momentum frustrates investors (FT)
  • China's meager aid to the Philippines could dent its image (Reuters)
  • Headline du jour: Granted 'decisive' role, Chinese markets decide to slide (Reuters)
  • Central Banks Risk Asset Bubbles in Battle With Deflation Danger (BBG)
  • Navy Ship Plan Faces Pentagon Budget Cutters (WSJ)
  • Investors pitch to take over much of Fannie and Freddie (FT)
  • To expand Khamenei’s grip on the economy, Iran stretched its laws (Reuters)
  • Short sellers bet that gunmaker shares are no long shot (FT)
  • Deflation threat in Europe may prompt investment rethink (Reuters)
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Equities Act Weak, Confused Following Oscar-Worthy Good Cop, Bad Cop Performance By The Fed

As DB notes, it appears that markets continue to steadily price in a greater probability of a December taper judging by the 2bp increase in 10yr UST yields, 1.2% drop in the gold price and an edging up in the USD crosses yesterday. Indeed, the Atlanta Fed’s Lockhart, who is considered a bellwether within the Fed, kept the possibility of a December tapering open in public comments yesterday. But his other comments were quite dovish, particularly when he said that he wants to see inflation accelerate toward 2% before reducing asset purchases to give him confidence that the US economy was not dealing with a “downside scenario”. Lockhart stressed that any decision by the Fed on QE would be data dependent - so his comments that the government shutdown will make coming data "less reliable" than might otherwise have been, until at least December, were also quite telling. The dovish sentiments were echoed by Kocherlakota, a FOMC voter next year. In other words, an Oscar-worthy good-cop/bad-cop performance by the Fed's henchmen, confusing algotrons for the second day in a row.

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PREVIEW: BoE Quarterly Inflation Report- 13th November 2013

What to look out for on November 13th's BoE quarterly inflation rate due at 1030GMT/0430CST

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7 More Years Of Low Rates.. And Then War?

While chart analogs provide optically pleasing (and often far too shockingly correct) indications of the human herd tendencies towards fear and greed, a glance through the headlines and reporting of prior periods can provide just as much of a concerning 'analog' as any chart. In this case, while these 3 pictures can paint a thousand words; a thousand words may also paint the biggest picture of all. It seems, socially and empirically, it is never different this time as these 1936 Wall Street Journal archives read only too well... from devaluations lifting stocks to inflationary side-effects of money flow and from short-covering, money-on-the-sidelines, Jobs, Europe, low-volume ramps, BTFD, and profit-taking, to brokers advising stocks for the long-run before a 40% decline.

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Obama Translated

Sadly, only in our new normal world is this funny...

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Peak Insanity: Retail Investors Are Making Direct Subprime Loans In A Reach For Yield

Being somewhat conscious human beings in a world in which our “leaders” have completely lost their minds can be challenging at times. One side effect of this condition is a certain emotional numbness when it comes to reacting to new events occurring in the world around you. It’s simply hard to shock us these days, but every now and then it does happen. The following article had us literally shaking our heads the entire time. If this isn’t peak insanity, we do not want to know what is.

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From The Geniuses Who Brought You Brosurance, Here Comes Obamacare... For Sluts?

Obamacare - it's not just for college-age kegstanders... now available to sluts easy women across the United States...

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Why Has Nobody Gone To Jail For The Financial Crisis? Judge Rakoff Says: "Blame The Government"

Five years have passed since the onset of what is sometimes called the Great Recession. While the economy has slowly improved, there are still millions of Americans  leading lives of quiet desperation: without jobs, without resources, without hope. Who was to blame?

"The government, writ large, had a hand in creating the conditions that encouraged the approval of dubious mortgages. It was the government, in the form of Congress, that repealed Glass-Steagall, thus allowing certain banks that had previously viewed mortgages as a source of interest income to become instead deeply involved in securitizing pools of mortgages in order to obtain the much greater profits available from trading. It was the government, in the form of both the executive and the legislature, that encouraged deregulation..."

- Judge Jed Rakoff

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Jim Rogers: "This Is Absolute Insanity"

"It's not just the Fed, it's central banking," Jim Rogers exclaims to Reuters in this brief clip, "this is absolute insanity." As the world's central banks, for the first time in history "try to debase their currencies," simultaneously, Rogers cautions, "the world's floating around on a huge artificial sea of liquidity." Rogers goes on to explain that he doesn't expect Bernanke to taper and fears that Yellen won't either but hopes that she "knows that this is going to cause problems when they stop producing so much money." His ominous warning, eventually "it's going to dry up.. and when it dries up, we're all going to pay the price for this madness."

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