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Five Times Is Not The Charm For ECB BTP Intervention Today

Tyler Durden's picture


As 10Y BTP spreads to Bunds hover around 25bps wider on the day, the ECB's bluff has not only been called but they have been the sucker at the table no less than five times already today. With the spread between 2Y and 10Y BTPs also having dropped (yield curve flattened) over 30bps, the Italian bond complex is sending some rather disturbing messages. And for all those who feel the need to blame speculators - CDS is actually outperforming bonds as real money leaves Berlusconi's Bonds in a hurry.

It seems the EUR88 line is an important level of defense - but then again so was EUR90 and EUR89 when we passed through them! More importantly, BTP spreads to Bunds are now 12bps off recent tights and 23bps wider on the day...


UPDATE: Since we posted BTPs have accelerated downwards - basically leaving all ECB purchases for the day now under water:

Chart: Bloomberg


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Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:13 | 1853329 agent default
agent default's picture

The end game is near.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:17 | 1853343 Hard1
Hard1's picture

If you think PIIGS was polictically incorrect, wait for the Fucking Pigs











Greece *again* and we hope this place is not Germany


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:37 | 1853430 Hard1
Hard1's picture

Some people junking my previous comment as an impulse reaction to their Minksy moment, presumably from the first two countries in the list, as the rest have mosty realized that they are in deep "trouble" by now.  That's why my favourite quote from American Beauty is "You'll be amazed by the power of denial"

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:38 | 1853447 Arius
Arius's picture

"we hope this place is not for Germany"

excuse my ignorance by WHY NOT? are they better than the rest of us???


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:43 | 1853474 nonclaim
nonclaim's picture

They are in a far better position than most. They still have a constitutional court, ffs.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:16 | 1853344 Bodhi
Bodhi's picture

The waiting is the hardest part...

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:26 | 1853393 FMR Bankster
FMR Bankster's picture

And can take a hell of a long time. The debt bomb created by World War one was kicked down the road for 10 years before it all collapsed in 1929-1933. Very similar situation. Too much debt, interlocking relationships of the debt, and an attempt to believe it can all work out in the long run.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:29 | 1853405 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

good way to see it - I would say half of the WWI US debt bomb blew up in 1929-1933, the rest petered down until 1941

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:24 | 1853671 Leopold B. Scotch
Leopold B. Scotch's picture

Intervention postponed and prolonged the purge that should have resolved all the inital (intervention made) problems, but for the Hoover intervention to short circuit the natural normalization. 

Hoover = FDR Lite.  Certainly no liquidationist, never mind the wisdom advised by Andrew Mellon.  And so began the first prolonged depression in the USA, courtesy of interventionista class finally having enough consolidated power to really mess things up badly.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:31 | 1853410 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Yea in the 1930's all trades were still placed over a teletype, stock quotes were listed in a newspaper page once a day, and news took 1-2 days to reach the things dont take as long.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:33 | 1853424 WonderDawg
WonderDawg's picture

And this debt bomb has already been ticking since 2000.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:41 | 1853459 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Yep, we're not just starting the countdown timer right now, its been ticking for a decade at least.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:47 | 1853811 agent default
agent default's picture

1929-1933: US largest employers: GM, Ford etc

2011: US largest employer: Wallmart

What me worry?

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:16 | 1853348 Fips_OnTheSpot
Fips_OnTheSpot's picture

we are in the middle of it - and the outcome is not "a perfect world for goldbugs" - I fear.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:14 | 1853333 qussl3
qussl3's picture

Cant hedge, sell the crap.

Unintended consequences.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:14 | 1853335 Dick Darlington
Dick Darlington's picture

Zee price stabeeletee!!!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:15 | 1853338 Eireann go Brach
Eireann go Brach's picture

Bunga CowaBunga!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:35 | 1853763 Leopold B. Scotch
Leopold B. Scotch's picture

Unga... Unga Galunga.  So i figure I got that going for me.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:15 | 1853340 GeneMarchbanks
GeneMarchbanks's picture

Sucks to be Draghi...

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:16 | 1853349 YesWeKahn
YesWeKahn's picture

I don't see any problem, the market is trying to rally off low. It's still 20% higher than the Oct low.People clearly filtered out all bad stuff and only focus on hope.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:18 | 1853359 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

LOL, ok thanks for droppin by ZH Steve Liesman.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:20 | 1853365 qussl3
qussl3's picture

The problem with hope is that you eventually have to face reality.

Hangovers are a bitch.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:25 | 1853388 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Yep, this 3 year long crack, meth, and screw top fortfied wine bender hangover is going to be a real skull splitter.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:29 | 1853406 qussl3
qussl3's picture

They could just snort more tho.

This bitch has legs yet.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:28 | 1853402 JimRogers
JimRogers's picture

Hope in one hand, shit in the other. Which hand fills up faster?


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:16 | 1853350 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

I dare you to cross THIS line! Oh yea? Well now I dare you to step across THIS line! Hmmm...OK well now I DOUBLE dare ya to step across THIS line!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:23 | 1853379 Global Hunter
Global Hunter's picture

Sounds like my mother in law trying to keep her dogs in line

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:26 | 1853351 DormRoom
DormRoom's picture

Once Italy falls it's pretty much over.  The ECB, like the Fed, has been preoccupied with propping up the speculative economy, and now its real economy is collapsing. 


shut it down.




Also, traders selling bonds can hedge (currency arbitrage).  ECB can only buy bonds, and can't hedge.  Thus it will always be in a losing position. shut it down.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:17 | 1853354 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Just like watching the previews at the theater "Coming soon to a debtor bond market near you".

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:17 | 1853355 pendragon
pendragon's picture

stupidity knows no bounds

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:19 | 1853357 Ethics Gradient
Ethics Gradient's picture

26bps and accelerating.

Make that 27.

Edit: sorry, that's just the increase in yield. Now 27 and a bit

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:21 | 1853373 qussl3
qussl3's picture

How soon before ECB capital is wiped?

Lucky for them gold is up.


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:31 | 1853411 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

duh, for a Central Bank capital is (sadly? regretfully?) irrelevant

only reserves matter for a CB and they are not needed often

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:40 | 1853450 qussl3
qussl3's picture

If all else fails.

Well you know the drill.

On a more serious note, you seem pretty in the know about the eur, does there even exist a trigger where the ECB would be forced to mark that PIIGS crap to reality?

If there isnt one, then well capital really doesnt matter i suppose.


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:13 | 1853673 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

well, yes, there is a "trigger" for all banks, and I call it "the regulator's patience"

Mr. King of the Bank of England, for example, is preparing the Commons on a new principle I call "the CB does not like your way of banking"

but guess who is the ECB's regulator? The European Central Bank. I'm not really sure they even really have to publish something, by the way

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:20 | 1853366 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Dollar cost averaging.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:20 | 1853369 transition
transition's picture

Typical boring ZH stuff : oh loooook the market moved down !!!!

Two days later, oh look the market moved up (this must be a conspiracy) !!!!!


rinse & repeat.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:24 | 1853383 Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden's picture

Or, if you were here two years ago, instead of confirming we really need to step up our admission screening process, you may have read this post from April 2010: "Italy is next" which confirms that if you get the big picture right (you are surely long gold?), intraday moves are completely irrelevant but they do add to the dramatic appeal.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:46 | 1853489 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

He didnt stand on the porch long enough.

In Project Mayhem, you do not ask questions. 

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:05 | 1853521 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

Tyler, I, for example, am "surely long gold"

I, on the other side, sometimes would wish you, as the publisher of my beloved ZH, would make a differentiation between

- rumors that are going to be relevant for today's markets (important but not for me)


- facts that are going to be relevant for the future (very important for me)


The ECB is going to support the BTP until... the bazooka-that-isn't is going to take over.

The ECB is going to use "the handbook" on this, and "the handbook" is one of the differences between the FED and the ECB.

It says that any CB intervention has to be as intransparent as possible and has to take the market by surprise, for maximum effect.

Following this, Draghi might or might not "test" how deep he needs to let the BTP fall until real appetite grows and then have a massive intervention. Which, translated in the current context, might even be a "floor" à la CHF. Should you shout "impossible" or "this would be a well without bottom" please note two facts:

- the SNB floor is working - i.e. other floors can work, too, if the CB uses it's strenghts and not it's weaknesses

- the Germans are the first and foremost of all EMU countries that enforce the "BundesBank Principle" on the ECB, i.e. they will endorse what you would call "Monetary Dictatorship". Even if they get sick just contemplating the bet.

How do you price in a Draghi Surprise? One that "slaps the speculators hands"? How robust is the CDS market? How leveraged are the CDS "à la baisse" players? How much pain can they endure?

Your knowledge of Central Banks seems to be quite extensive when it comes to the FED but you have very often misunderstood (well, you and me are both not the Almighty) how the other CBs work and talk.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:44 | 1853799 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

i think we're all trying to separate the wheat from the chaff, factually

the SNB peg appears to be working. for now.  to you.

but is that a fact?  or a rumor?



Mon, 11/07/2011 - 15:06 | 1854121 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

slewie, you rat! you are perfectly right

my god-daughter thinks yes, she has a pet theory I can't prove or disprove

her recipy: buy EUR with CHF, buy USD with EUR, buy CHF with USD

a perpetuum mobile of devaluation (to zero?) - but she thinks with the "Dollar Strenght" theme doable

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 15:34 | 1854293 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

5X is not the charm...

...she is!

hmmm...maybe she'd like the slewie perpetual fiat fade:

  • buy gold & silver w/ CHF
  • buy gold & silver w/ EUR
  • buy gold & silver w/ USD

where ounces = wealth + insurance



Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:58 | 1853580 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:26 | 1853392 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Pretty broad statement there, I hope that isn't how you trade.  Italian bonds are going bidless, that is what this is about.  Are you saying you are buying Italian debt?  If you are, then I have some Greek debt to sell you.


This is trading site and the song remains the same, buy low sell high.  If you don't have some real useful information to contribute, please fuck off.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:56 | 1853567 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

I have a few friends who made a pile on Greek Bonds!

Nothing for me, I'd be sick just even thinking about.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:58 | 1853589 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Timing is everything.  I'd say this site is ahead of the curve on realeasing a lot of information, how you trade it is your business.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:03 | 1853620 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

Well, yes, ok. But the site understandably focuses on the "rumor that shakes the market" more than on all the rest.

Nevertheless, I maintain that there is a lot of misinformation and misunderstandings here in ZH about the principles of Central Banking.

Hate them or love them - understanding them is fundamental in this age.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:28 | 1853729 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Understanding "them" is only useful for frontrunning the idiocy of the central planners/bankers.  Sorry, I run a real business in the Agriculture sector and know what my margins look like (China buying our pecans now- so that is good).  Central bankers are paper-pushing fucknuts that still believe in infinite growth on a planet with finite resources, ALL their models depend on growth.   Moreover, innovation in a healthy economy uses capital from savings not debt.  When people invest their savings they make damn sure to do the proper due diligence.

Look, either way you slice it the laws of physics and Nature win, period.  From my perspective, my business requires a fairly high input of energy, this is what is crushing my margins.  The fact is that worldwide energy production has been flat for several years now.  This is what the real papering over is all about and even ZH seems to avoid the topic altogether.  More and more energy and capital are being sacaficed to isolate, extract, refine, and deliver less energy.  All paper going to zero.

Trading is a hobby to extract more paper to trun into more physical assets, I am investing a lot more locally to keep my employees and neighbors secure, I suggest you do the same.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:29 | 1853741 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

I'm with you, I agree with you and I'm in a similar situation

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:30 | 1853409 hambone
hambone's picture

Transition - you took the time to write this and simply showcase what a dipshit you are?  Typically idiot savant is best kept to oneself...

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:34 | 1853431 Lets Eat Grandma
Lets Eat Grandma's picture


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:47 | 1853458 hambone
hambone's picture

His genius is his ability to read and be shown reality yet selectively not comprehend any of it...same skill Liesman and the like share

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:32 | 1853417 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Go to yahoo. They are always bullish over there. And I am sure that you will get great sell side analysis .  The fact is that Zero Hedge has been way ahead of the curve with information you will never get any place else..

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:35 | 1853437 Archimedes Leve...
Archimedes Lever Broke's picture

transition, really?


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:40 | 1853455 tuco13
tuco13's picture

You've had your fun, now back to your playstation while Mommy and Daddy work.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:41 | 1853460 homersimpson
homersimpson's picture

My name is Homer Simpson and I even think you're a dumbass for saying stupid stuff like that.

Maybe I should teach you where the "any" key is..

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:43 | 1853482 Miss Expectations
Miss Expectations's picture

Typical jet skiing asshole.  No brain or brakes.  Run into a bulkhead why don't you?

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:21 | 1853370 sabra1
sabra1's picture

before italy falls, iran would be invaded!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:23 | 1853377 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Yea no doubt theyre brewing up a BIG diversion this time....will make 9-11 look like childs play.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:23 | 1853381 lapedochild
lapedochild's picture

So basically ECB endoring Berlusconi by buying his bonds

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:24 | 1853384 monopoly
monopoly's picture

Yes, agree, the waiting is hard and this will take longer than any of us imagine. But, notice how gold, silver are ignoring the rise in the dollar so far this morning. Very impressive.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:25 | 1853387 SRVDisciple
SRVDisciple's picture


I'm new to this site as it was recommended to me by a long-time friend as a place to find some truth about all of the market manipulation. -BUT- I'm admittedly a noob at this. Despite my anticipation of flames, I would like to ask if someone here could point me to a place to get edjumacated on the terminology in these articles like BTPS, bps, bunds? (I'm starting to figure out CDSs).

Thanks in advance,

SRVDisciple (In case anyone gives a crap about my username - SRV stands for Stevie Ray Vaughan, not some obscure trading method)

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:27 | 1853398 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Dont worry, Stevie Ray Vaughan is really all you need to know.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:37 | 1853420 Global Hunter
Global Hunter's picture

As for the terms, I'm not being cheeky but google them as you see them, if somebody gives you a good link then great.  I was an institutional trader for ten years and still come across things I haven't heard of and I try to figure them out and get up to speed with the article.  I was a small cap equity guy so bonds for instance can still throw me.  I'll say this in my experience this stuff is a lot simpler than it first appears but it takes time to get use to lingo and to start thinking in terms of what the market is really saying.

Hope it helps, JEABDisciple

John Entwhistle Air Bass

edit I do not trade paper markets any longer but still enjoy following them just thought I should clarify

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:56 | 1853562 SRVDisciple
SRVDisciple's picture

I've been trying google and wiki, but terms like "10Y BTP spreads to Bunds" are eluding me. It seems like BTP is Italian Bonds and Bunds are German bonds so that quoted line makes no sense at all.  <sigh> Time spin SRV's Little Wing to help me relax.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:05 | 1853633 Global Hunter
Global Hunter's picture

Yes the spread refers the difference in current yield between a bond and a reference bond in this case the bund or the German bond.  (UK bonds are Gilts, US Treasuries bonds are treasuries, bund is german bonds).  The spread between the Italian bond and the german bond continue to increase.  What it means is that people are selling Italian bonds and buying German ones on the whole.  As they continue to flee the risk of Italy for the relative safe haven of Germany they will put more downward pressure on Italian bonds as they sell and the spread will increase further.  This what these articles are refering to, the spread between italian and german bonds continues to increase to historically high levels, this tells us all things being equal that capital is leaving italy putting further pressure on them (higher interest rates) and the Euro Zone as a whole and by extension all the big global banks.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:18 | 1853693 SRVDisciple
SRVDisciple's picture

Thank you so freakin' much!!!!

So would it now be appropriate to spin SRV's "Empty Arms"?



Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:37 | 1853446 TheLooza
TheLooza's picture
Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:32 | 1853415 qussl3
qussl3's picture

The goog and wiki are your friends.

Surprising the amount one can learn there.

The company line at least.


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:33 | 1853425 moriarty
moriarty's picture

Google - Highlight the word/acronym and look it up on Google. I have been pretty much a lurker for the last 15 mnths and I am now carrying more & more of them in my head.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:35 | 1853432 qmhedging
qmhedging's picture


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:38 | 1853451 WonderDawg
WonderDawg's picture

First, crank up The Sky Is Crying and listen to the mournful wail of SRV's axe to get you in the mood for this place.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:57 | 1853574 SRVDisciple
SRVDisciple's picture

Ain't that the truth. So should I stock up on gold or ammo or canned food?

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:03 | 1853618 WonderDawg
WonderDawg's picture


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:27 | 1853399 Global Hunter
Global Hunter's picture


signed, ECB

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:30 | 1853407 Poule Mouillee
Poule Mouillee's picture

Those numbers are changing pretty fast... Maybe they'll declare a glitch and cancel all the day's trades.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:31 | 1853413 Black Forest
Black Forest's picture

Looks like BUMPA BUMPA

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:31 | 1853414 NEOSERF
NEOSERF's picture

No worries, the EU has an ace up it's sleeve to forestall the Italy collapse which will be the "surprise" resignation of Berlusconi, signalling that all is alright and will send Italian yields back towards 6%...have no fear, it is all under control...amazing to think that forced resignation of leaders is done to save the stock/bond market and no one seems to care this is the level of the save now to kick the can for  another week..

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:32 | 1853419 Big_Al
Big_Al's picture

10am/4pm CET, "Ciao Mario, shall we say: let's call it a day...? Mama is making some nice pasta tonight..."

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:33 | 1853426 HD
HD's picture

Lets roll for a lucky seven...

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:34 | 1853428 Subprime JD
Subprime JD's picture

Fools and blind. Don't you see that higher yields on Italian paper is an indication of STRENGTH?? after all, higher yields show that the Italian government is willing to reward investors for taking risk. In the end, these higher yields will make more money for investors which in turn will use that money to buy more italian paper. All this racism against southern Europeans needs to come to an end. Occupy zerohedge!!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:37 | 1853443 john39
john39's picture

so why bother with italian bonds then, buy greek...

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:43 | 1853475 homersimpson
homersimpson's picture

We can tell you drank a can of "dumbass" this morning.. just like yesterday, the day before, etc.

Occupy that space in between your head before you ask others to occupy ZH..

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:50 | 1853527 Subprime JD
Subprime JD's picture

On last night's thread I got over 600 junks, with one comment recording over 90 junks. Tell momofader to beat that!!

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:35 | 1853436 kito
kito's picture

sooooo glad to see the ecb emascualted today. say what you want about berlusconi, but the guy is not going to let a female with a schnitzel and a french pastry dictate italian policy without a fight.....

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:38 | 1853448 Dick Darlington
Dick Darlington's picture

More and more of the eurofanatics are starting to see the light and throwing in the towel...

11-07 11:15: Some members of the ECB governing council feel "uneasy"...

11-07 11:15: Euro-zone officials sceptical about EFSF leverage plans according to...

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:44 | 1853470 sopel39
sopel39's picture

Is ECB capable of decreasing bond spread by at least 1% as it did the last time or they cannot do this because of possible huge cost? If not, doesn't that mean that Italy has now passed vortex event horizon?

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 12:46 | 1853504 SDRII
SDRII's picture

Maybe the bond market isn’t a  symptom but an instrument

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:04 | 1853625 adr
adr's picture

I just finished up two weeks of sales meetings with retail buyers. They are all scared shitless and can't give me any orders past January. They have all said they are going to wait and see how the spring goes and then revisit. Nobody is expecting a good holiday, most see real sales down 30% from last year. Mainly because they have bought almost 50% less than last year.

I get my numbers from buyers own books, not the bullshit that passes through the CFO's department on its way to a quarterly report. If anyone thinks reported comps or anything sent out by a publicly traded corporation has anything to do with what actually goes out the door, I've got some great martian property you might be interested in.

I've taken buyers out to ballgames and dinners and it is amazing what they tell you off the clock. I've been told things like, I don't know how the company does it, the reported sales of my department are over $25o million but we only boughtaroung $150 million last year and half that stuff is still sitting there. Whatever it's not my job to count sales, as long as my boss is happy I'm happy.

Retail only exists to pad the numbers of public corporations which in turn pads the pockets of the directors who invest in them. The fact that the doors open every day is just a mirage to make it look like consumers actually matter. A good moving product line sells 4% of its inventory per week, so for every $100 on the shelf $4 is sold every week. If you do the math you see big retail sitting on a whole bunch of stuff that never moves.

Mon, 11/07/2011 - 13:11 | 1853661 JW n FL
JW n FL's picture



Hi Hoe!

Hi Hoe!

It off to Print I go!


Mon, 11/07/2011 - 14:22 | 1853968 Grand Supercycle
Grand Supercycle's picture

Latest NASDAQ chart porn suggests fun times ahead:

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!