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No, It Is Not Just The Chinese New Year

Tyler Durden's picture


The one indicator which the Chinese Politburo can not fudge: power production and hence: demand, speaks volumes about the true state of China's economy.


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Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:38 | 2302184 YesWeKahn
YesWeKahn's picture

After the "earth quake" around year end, things are collapsing.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:46 | 2302695 ACP
ACP's picture

Hey, where's the seasonal adjustment?

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 05:45 | 2302889 trebuchet
trebuchet's picture

Who needs seasonal adjustment when that power production = + 7% per year... 


that graph excludes growing cleantech, so its bullish. 

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 08:42 | 2303097 Badabing
Badabing's picture

did we forget the Olympics? could this be the reason for the ripple.

2008:The government is planning drastic measures.

This does not mean that the air will not get cleaner this month. Large numbers of personal vehicles, as well as cargo trucks that do not have Beijing license plates, will be taken off the roads in efforts to reduce car pollution. Additionally, the hyperactive construction with huge numbers of buildings scheduled for completion or undergoing rushed renovation before the Games will stop completely late this month when a citywide construction freeze goes into effect

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 06:19 | 2302913 monkeyboy
monkeyboy's picture

I would have thought everything is "fudge-able" in this day and age...unfortunately.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:38 | 2302185 Unprepared
Unprepared's picture

Not necessary. Maybe slave work is a la mode these days.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 01:06 | 2302767 AldousHuxley
AldousHuxley's picture

China's problem is that they have too many slaves.

Even the most brutal dictator cannot fully control billion slaves.


Ever work for fortune 50 and got lost amongst 100,000 employees? China is like working for a company with 1,000,000 employees and 10,000 Vice Presidents.

Most Chinese are so detached from C-suite that they will be just doing life as with just under different management.


But US is going to make sure Chinese hard labor work is going to become worthless as dollar loses value. Same shit with Japan. MAke them think they got rich Shanghai condos worth more than Manhattan condos, but as soon as they challenge the #1 spot, here comes great Chinese depression and Jews will buy Shanghai on the cheap again.


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:39 | 2302187 DormRoom
DormRoom's picture

uhmm.. the x-axis spacing seems off.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:40 | 2302193 Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden's picture

It isn't.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:55 | 2302242 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

according to andyWei, this last downturn is due to unseasonably warm weather

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:01 | 2302437 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

Don't worry, it's transitory.

Like a Gamma Ray burst....

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:30 | 2302670 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

OMG...a Yooper opining on the markets and global finance.  I am in awe.

Are you the first?

Normally, the rest of us think of Yoopers as being only concerned with deer camp, drinking, snow shoeing, and listening to Gordon Lightfoot albums. 

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:39 | 2302679 CrazyCooter
Fri, 03/30/2012 - 00:39 | 2302746 RichardP
RichardP's picture

Thank you for that, Cooter.  A song I never get tired of listening to.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 02:19 | 2302810 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

There's not a lot, but growing quicker.

And not everyone is dumb enough to go onto Lake Superior loaded down with iron ore in October.

I prefer going out there with shiny stuff, what little I can afford!

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 02:21 | 2302815 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

Plus, I ain't too dumb.  I went Tech, No Logical University!

Dat dere gotta be wirt sumpin....

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:57 | 2302243 whatsinaname
whatsinaname's picture

Whats up with the shipping indices BDI & BSI lately ? Anybody here understand the notable rebound in the last month ? Are those also impacted by LTRO liquidity ? 

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:59 | 2302255 Sam Clemons
Sam Clemons's picture

Dead cats bounce.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:01 | 2302261 whatsinaname
whatsinaname's picture

Not related directly to the topic but the Fed's liquidity has not helped Nat Gas prices and wondering how these Nat Gas suppliers are able to sustain themselves at these ultra low prices ? Lately coal companies getting hammered too !! Anybody hear of bankruptcies / cash flow crises in that arena ??

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:07 | 2302276 walküre
walküre's picture

Ben can't fudge demand for resources. Speculating on NG or Coal made sense when the economies were humming. But now demand is falling off a cliff and speculators aren't touching either NG or Coal with a ten foot pole. There's no shortage in either of these two commodities.

In a sense, the collapse in NG prices is reflective of real demand and the real economy. Same for coal.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:33 | 2302490 Maos Dog
Maos Dog's picture

Nat gas and coal are not rising. This means that printed money is not bidding for these resources, and labor cost to produce and supply electricty (linemen, etc) should be going down in theory.

Why are my electric rates rising? Is this local to my area? Anyone point me to some electric usage charts?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:31 | 2302655 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

RE:"Why are my electric rates rising? Is this local to my area? Anyone point me to some electric usage charts?"

too much regulation? Opacities in monopoly industries are always cheaper/best kept as a private matter, or so I've been told; over and over and over and over and over... if the upcoming quarter's numbers don't keep rising, anyway

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:47 | 2302698 CrazyCooter
CrazyCooter's picture

If you mean the US, this will get you started ...



Fri, 03/30/2012 - 00:08 | 2302715 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture there anywhere else, really?

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 01:37 | 2302787 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

oh yes GoinFawr, there are. Only,we get the crap after it's been well and thoroughly masticated and perfected upon y'all. No way to resist it here!

obfuscation is the norm in India. As are Kleptocratic thuggocracies at every level.


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:40 | 2302683 Nels
Nels's picture


Why are my electric rates rising? Is this local to my area? Anyone point me to some electric usage charts?

Yes, it's local.  Tonights local news out of NYC told about rate reductions due to low nat gas prices for several of the local utilities.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:53 | 2302702 CrazyCooter
CrazyCooter's picture

The lady you might want to start to follow isLeslie Glustrom.



Fri, 03/30/2012 - 09:22 | 2303214 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

My power supplier made a big bet on solar energy. That didn't work out so well. Someone's got to pay for that bad bet: consumers.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:43 | 2302507 Desert Irish
Desert Irish's picture

Not reflective of real demand at all. Coals getting hammered because it's cheaper to use NG and power production is switching over. NG is in freefall essentially due to mild weather and the increase in fracking. Natural gas consumption has remained pretty much static since the 70's at around 21 million cubic feet with a slight increase in 2011 to 24 million despite having one of the mildest winters on record. We are producing a lot more of it that's all.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:00 | 2302542 Maos Dog
Maos Dog's picture

But yet Electric rates are rising 20% per year here:

And demand is flat for several years now from the above chart in the thead.

makes no sense.


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:15 | 2302563 LongSoupLine
LongSoupLine's picture

Look, it's real simple.  I'll lay it out:


1) coal and gas fuel electrical power plants.

2) Chevy Volts charge from said power plants' output.

3) Chevy Volts have since all burned to the ground.

4) No more Chevy Volts to plug in.

5) Demand from power plants now down huge.

6) duh!

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:59 | 2302659 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

uS version:

'TOo much regulations, running through my brain. T0o much regulations, driving me insane. I screw the whole world six times over; now you want natural gas, just bend over. (Cha)...I screw the whole world six times over; now you want natural gas well bend over(hoo!)... Over you, over me, over busybodies, over him, over her, over everybody. TOo much regulations, running through my brain. TOo much regulations, driving me insane."-Sting(ed.)


'TOo much regulations, runnings through my brain. T0o much regulations, drivings me insane. I sccrew the whole world six times oval; now you want natural gas, just bends oval. (Cha)...I sccrew the whole world six times oval; now you want natural gas well bends oval(hoo!)... Oval you, oval me, oval busybodies, oval him, oval her, oval everybody. TOo much regulations, runnings through my brain. TOo much regulations, drivings me insane."-Sting(ed.)

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 06:31 | 2302918 LongSoupLine
LongSoupLine's picture

It was sarc for you a-holes that junked me...

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:43 | 2302688 CrazyCooter
CrazyCooter's picture

I link to an excellent comment on this subject over on another thread ...



Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:41 | 2302503 palmereldritch
palmereldritch's picture

Same bounce in the BDI

Looking like the iceberg that sank the Chitanic

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 05:32 | 2302879 maxcody
maxcody's picture

The ones I have shot did not bounce but now I just shoot grakles and starlings.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:22 | 2302468 CrashisOptimistic
CrashisOptimistic's picture

An important general point in an environment of scarcity.

Production of electricity will equal consumption.

It does not have to equal demand.  Demand does not equal consumption.

In a scarcity environment, demand will exceed consumption.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:42 | 2302656 palmereldritch
palmereldritch's picture

As history has proven time and again, authoritarian theft and resource control by communist gangsters ensures scarcity will be the driving economic collector for the elite's largesse.

If it works in China why wouldn't the Marxists try it here?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:35 | 2302599 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture

That's one ugly chart for the biggest BRIC in the wall.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:39 | 2302190 malikai
malikai's picture

Prepare the printing presses.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:23 | 2302469 BudFox2012
BudFox2012's picture

Do they print Yuan on rice paper?  Is it time to go long on rice?

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 09:25 | 2303225 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

Is rice paper edible? My wife is Chinese (born in Shanghai) and once got some 'candy' that was wrapped in a transparent film that melted in one's mouth. I consumed two altogether, but didn't like the taste. I returned to my normal, balanced diet: milk chocolate, dark chocolate and white chocolate.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:43 | 2302197 Bunga Bunga
Bunga Bunga's picture

Those 60 million empty homes need no electricity?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:00 | 2302259 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

It means they aren't building another 60 million empty homes.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:43 | 2302199 Stax Edwards
Stax Edwards's picture

Can we at least get a nice correction in the indexes on China demand then? I am afraid many of my fellow countrymen are undernvested due to the fact they are just starting to get back to work. Maybe bernank can set a new target of 1250 followed by the moonshot.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:43 | 2302200 davey
davey's picture

Who's going to buy the 6 trillion in US treasuries coming due over the next 4 years

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:47 | 2302213 walküre
walküre's picture

You're not really asking that question, are you? The Fed of course! China has been selling USTs and buying German infrastructure and companies left, right and center. The Chinese are not just label queens, they're buying the label, factory, workers and all!

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:53 | 2302222 Frozen IcQb
Frozen IcQb's picture

Uncle Ben for 70% and muppets for 30%.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:57 | 2302244 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

You are. I hope you have some gold now because by the time uncle Ben gets done printing the green back won't buy anything.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:16 | 2302462 Everybodys All ...
Everybodys All American's picture

You realize Ben will want the gold back at some point.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:23 | 2302470 CrashisOptimistic
CrashisOptimistic's picture


Why would you want to own the next tax revenue source of governments?  They will tax transactions at 70%.  That will be that for gold.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:59 | 2302708 Alpha Monkey
Alpha Monkey's picture

maybe, but then the gold either goes underground or flees the country.  Either way, the government will be forced to change it's policies so people WILL spend their gold, allowing "money" to flow into the economy.  That will be that for price controls on gold.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:45 | 2302692 TruthInSunshine
TruthInSunshine's picture


I just posted an outstanding Bloomberg Article by Caroline Baum on that very subject in another thread:

Here's a teaser excerpt:

Four Numbers Add Up to an American Debt Disaster

Consider the following numbers: 2.2, 62.8, 454, 5.9. Drawing a blank? Not to worry. They don’t mean much on their own.

Now consider them in context:

1) 2.2 percent is the average interest rate on the U.S. Treasury’s marketable and non-marketable debt (February data).

2) 62.8 months is the average maturity of the Treasury’s marketable debt (fourth quarter 2011).

3) $454 billion is the interest expense on publicly held debt in fiscal 2011, which ended Sept. 30.

4) $5.9 trillion is the amount of debt coming due in the next five years.

---And here's the link to the full article:

Four Numbers Add Up to an American Debt Disaster

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:44 | 2302202 asteroids
asteroids's picture

Alas, any number generated by any government must be considered suspect and taken with a grain of salt. The power consumption number might be better or possibly/probably much worse.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 03:03 | 2302834 Jack Sheet
Jack Sheet's picture

Seconded. Absolutely. The interpretation of the data should be accompanied by a critical assessement of its reliability, which I do not see here.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:45 | 2302204 walküre
walküre's picture

Hello? The drop and subsequent spike in '08 and '09 are crazy! Did the Politburo turn off all the lights across the country in '08 and then turned them back on with double wattage?

Looks like an EKG with cardiac arrest and then being shocked back to life!

Is this correct?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:46 | 2302205 Saul Sage
Saul Sage's picture

couple years back my chinese vendors were squeezing the shit out of me. Now they're all begging for work and when I order the shit gets here on time. Made a trip a couple weeks ago and definately not as many workers in the factories as before. 


Fri, 03/30/2012 - 03:56 | 2302852 meatbag
meatbag's picture

I agree that there are not as many workers in the factory as before, but I am seeing the exact opposite for the demand and production.   My factories are all at full capacity and are therefore squeezing the shit out of me now.  It was a few year's back, when demand was not so high, that it seemed I had some leverage.   Now, if I don't like thier price or terms, they are able to find someone else who is willing.   May I ask, where are your suppliers?  On the coast?  

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 18:02 | 2305060 Saul Sage
Saul Sage's picture

All over really: Guangzhou, Shanghai, Wenzou, Yantai, Ningbo. I have a pretty diversified product line which requires an equally diversified assortment of factories. I guess by a couple years back I meant right before the 2008 crash and a little after. From about mid-2010 I started to notice the difference. Don't get me wrong, prices arent going down - its just that theyre not squeezing me for more once I place an order like they used to claiming "inflation" or "the loss in buying power of the USD." When they come at me with shit like that I feel more prepared to respond thanks to Zerohedge :)

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:50 | 2302229 KandiRaverHipster
KandiRaverHipster's picture

all those empty condos

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:52 | 2302233 Angel Face
Angel Face's picture

Looks like those Chinese do green tech very well!

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:56 | 2302430 Missiondweller
Missiondweller's picture

Oh sure, they sell solar panels to dumb greenie Americans.



They don't use them themselves. The energy is too expensive!

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:53 | 2302237 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Bullish for firewood, and cabbage.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:57 | 2302249 Will To Live
Will To Live's picture

Blame it on climate change.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:58 | 2302250 chump666
chump666's picture

Nasty.  Now we short Australia.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 19:57 | 2302251 schatzi
schatzi's picture

umm.. I love a decent doom & gloom trajectory just like anybody else here, but all I see is a short post GFC contraction of demand and then a massive spike followed by a humming 5-10% growth rate which is approx. in line with their GDP growth. OK, so energy demand growth isn't at 15% as pre GFC, but still strong and maybe they're implementing more energy efficient production porcesses e.g. like Germany? What am I missing?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:04 | 2302272 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture

it isn't balls

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:05 | 2302274 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

You're witnessing the death if an expansion boom fueled by credit ( U.S and European credit ). You can only build so many empty cities before it catches up with you.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:28 | 2302586 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

ZH had a post last year, cant find, so paraphrase,

China had 64 million electric meters that have been installed for six months and have registered no electrical usage in that time frame.

found it, or something like it.

Haunted by China's ghost cities

John Lee

Published 6:32 AM, 29 Mar 2011 Last update 10:40 AM, 29 Mar 2011

For example, in the first half of 2010, a Chinese report revealed that 64.6 million urban electricity meters registered no electricity usage. This amounts to unused housing that could accommodate 200 million people. Andy Xie, the former chief economist for Asia at Morgan Stanley, crunched his own numbers and estimated that residential vacancies for commercial housing is around 30 per cent. Speak to Chinese middle class property investors and they will tell you that they buy property not to rent but to hoard as assets – in the same way one buys gold. In other words, the rise in property prices has little to do with demand and therefore yield.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 05:47 | 2302891 trebuchet
trebuchet's picture

was that a fat finger corrupt purchasing manager who placed the 0s in the wrong place?



Fri, 03/30/2012 - 06:09 | 2302905 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

They are very small people, many can fit it one house.

Chinese proverb,

Virginity like bubble, one prick all gone.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:55 | 2302428 Stoploss
Stoploss's picture

A decade of growth. If you hold your Byrini ruler up to the screen you will notice that it aligns with the power consumption of 2002.

Not exactly a booming engine of growth all of a sudden huh?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:15 | 2302459 Imminent Crucible
Imminent Crucible's picture

No, the chart plots annual rate of change, not annual power consumption.

The difficulty is that growth of power consumption has been falling steeply since 2009, and while Congress would kill for a 6% growth rate here, 6% implies a GDP growth rate that is far too weak to keep China's game rolling. Despite what you may think, China still has a serious unemployment problem, on top of all the pollution, corruption and generalized misery.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:57 | 2302638 Stoploss
Stoploss's picture


It's a production chart. it is obvious the "growth" of power consumption (demand) has been falling, as indicated by the decline in production as shown in the CHART.. Im not blind.

Nor did i see the word congress mentioned either. Despite what you may think, i might know a little more of the China syndrome, then again, i might not.

I do know that snapshot doesn't go far enough back to put into proper perspective where the production, yoy % change chart is going to end up for damn sure..

They still have a property bubble, and bank crisis coming up.

Here is a clue:

"No, It Is Not Just The Chinese New Year"

Look at the chart again, then think of something shiny..

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:30 | 2302478 Schmuck Raker
Schmuck Raker's picture


You ask a reasonable question. What I think you need is some additional perspective.

I suggest skimming some posts @

("Mish-tested, Tyler-approved")


Dr. E & Crucible answered best so far.

Basically I'd just say "China ain't Germany"

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 03:41 | 2302846 schatzi
schatzi's picture

Great blog, thank you. What a treasure trove of information and thought.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 05:35 | 2302882 maxcody
maxcody's picture

Depends on who wins the November election.  Doug Kass is a bear if Obama wins

as he belives he will.  I hope he is wrong.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:16 | 2302300 Poofter Priest
Poofter Priest's picture




Ya's really hard to know what to trust on these numbers.

A couple of years ago I saw a chart that showed power consumption as matched to 'growth of productivity'.

It was interesting in that the power consumption line dropped just like the one posted here.

But their productivity showed their 'standard' 8% ytoy.

I had to laugh and ask did they get really really good at production over there or did they just start turning off the lights at night. LOL

Sat, 03/31/2012 - 08:27 | 2306063 meatbag
meatbag's picture

The productivity increases in manfacturing over here are very real.  THey need to be with labor cost inflation at 20%+ per year.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:18 | 2302310 Catullus
Catullus's picture

It's still positive.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:38 | 2302607 Jake88
Jake88's picture


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:21 | 2302317 Jason T
Jason T's picture

At least it's still positive unlike the US

Either way, when global economy falters, oh shit, there goes the planet.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:24 | 2302333 miker
miker's picture

Who sez these power numbers are truthful?  I really don't know what to believe anymore except what I see with my own eyes in Charlotte, NC.  Things are slow.  Some days, daytime traffic is non-existent.  Other times, the trendy restuarants are pretty busy.  But today, I get a "coaching" call from Lowes Commercial askiing if there is anything they can do for me.  Yea, cut your prices another 25%!!

Rental is slow.  House sales slow.  City Manager want to raise taxes (jest a little he sez) so they can borrow more money and build sidewalks, neighborhood improvement and all the other bullshit cities do now.  I just want my trash picked up without the truck dumping a quart of hydraulic fluid on the road. 

Overall, people with "good" corporate/government  jobs seem to be holding the shit together.  Everyone else is either sucking on the govment teet or retired and trying to make ends meet on fixed income.  Not much in the middle. 

Overall though, it seems we're in deep shit.  Fed's continue to "stimulate" economy with 1.3-1.6? Trillion deficit.  I don't think this is going away until we cut spending/increase revenue and balance.  Then the shit really hits the fan.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:07 | 2302647 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

Mike r

Dappers proven economic indicator,

Check tire tread wear on cars parked at walmart. Bald and balder

Check construction/equipment rental parking lots. little room left for customers to park for all the equipment there.

Check R/V camper and boat stores, look at the manufacture dates of inventory/overstock. (if it's 3 years old can we still call it new?)

Big citys= I don't go by permits pulled data, go to local city code enforcement parking lot, look at all the city public work vehicles with 6 months of dust and grime on them.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:57 | 2302705 palmereldritch
palmereldritch's picture

I don't think this is going away until we cut spending/increase revenue and balance.  Then the shit really hits the fan.

If the fraudulent FED is not held accountable legally and politically and removed from the equation then given the scenario you've described above it's just a matter of time until those 30 pound ticks sucking blood on everyone's neck cocoon and transform into vampiric wraiths laying waste to what's left of the Republic.

No amount of cutting or revenue increases will escape their ponzi debt fraud.  Ask Iceland.  They did the math and the due diligence on the legitimacy of their corrupt banking system.  

They kicked the banksters out and are Euro debt note free to decide their own destiny.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 09:37 | 2303262 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

I'd like to see the Congress and president held accountable. Recent stories pointed out that the Senate, under the leadership of the insufferable Harry Reid, hasn't passed a budget in nearly three years. I call that dereliction of duty. The Senate should have it's pay suspended until a balanced budget is passed by both houses.

I wonder when it will be time to go long on tar and feathers.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:25 | 2302335 bugs_
bugs_'s picture

hard landing.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:33 | 2302370 non_anon
non_anon's picture




Thu, 03/29/2012 - 20:49 | 2302418 Apostate2
Apostate2's picture

Mr. Wu no longer has a laundry. Sad to say the business was flop.

He shouted 'what a hope' as he chewed a bar of soap

And then put up the shutters of the shop.


Said Mr. Wu, "What shall I do?" and Mr. Wu's a window cleaner now.

The laundry, it didn't pay.

Now there's no clean collars down Limehouse Way.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:17 | 2302463 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Gee cant they just print more magical money and shove it up the unicorns ass?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:36 | 2302494 Schmuck Raker
Schmuck Raker's picture

We're talking about China, SD-1.

Dragons, not unicorns.

You gotta be a smoother talker than Bill, with bigger balls than Hillary, to try shoving anything up a dragon's ass.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 21:21 | 2302467 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

Trusting western data is dodgy let alone Chinese data. The reality is that the Chinese govenment has its foot on the break of the economy as it is trying to kill inflation, in particular property prices.  It can remove its foot from the break anytime it wants.


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:30 | 2302592 laomei
laomei's picture

Finally, at least one person here actually gets it!

The government is in firm control of the whole situation and in the end anything that needs to be done both can and will be done, even if it completely defies western "logic" about how markets work.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:59 | 2302640 Non Passaran
Non Passaran's picture

Yeah right.
They're as screwed as the West. You could say everything that needs to be done is getting done in the EU as well.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:16 | 2302653 chump666
chump666's picture

F*ck me dead.  It's like saying the Fed controls interest rates.  

Look, China is a runaway train heading towards a full scale blowup.  Net importers of oil, inflation breaking out everywhere, massive Yuan outflows, FX reserves taken a beating, property bubble to end all bubbles, gray/black money flows going in all directions.  It's a mess. The market is finally catching a whiff of it hence AUD sales/longs being chopped to f*ck.

Now, once the HFTs collapse the MA supports going into April. US markets are going to wake up to the fact China is going to crash hard.  So these pathetic 3.00pm meltups are toast and Obama can kiss his deficit insanity goodbye as UST yields will blow out.  The Fed prints, oil goes to 110+ = Total war.  That's it.  Your leaders are a bunch of dangerous, clueless f*cking a-holes. 


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:18 | 2302658 chump666
chump666's picture

I repeat. "Your leaders are a bunch of dangerous, clueless f*cking a-holes."


Fri, 03/30/2012 - 02:32 | 2302819 Colonial Intent
Colonial Intent's picture

Or they're just plain evil.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:25 | 2302580 sherryw
sherryw's picture

A friend returned from teaching English at a chinese university. She said most people she came across were sharing jobs in the community, ie, all part time because full time jobs were scarce. She also said there was a huge turnover of start up shops and small businesses going broke because Mum and Dad had put all their life savings from running the laundry and the noodle shop into an IT shop for their little prince,or fashion shop for their little princess. These start ups were going broke in six months  with Mum and Dad then losing the noodle shop and the laundry, wash, rinse, repeat.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:45 | 2302615 non_anon
non_anon's picture

one Chinese I always admired, Bruce Lee, though he was born in America

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:46 | 2302624 jonjon831983
jonjon831983's picture

This metric was touted back in the 08/09.


I looked it up for the USA as well.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 22:47 | 2302626 CvlDobd
CvlDobd's picture

I bet most readers didn't notice that the dashed horizontal line isn't at 0. Most are seeing zig zag line under dashed line equals bad.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:28 | 2302651 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

"The one indicator which the Chinese Politburo can not fudge"


 weather, no?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 23:20 | 2302661 Subliminal messenger
Subliminal messenger's picture

I'm currently traveling in China and they're still building at a 100 mph. It reminds me of Spanish coastal areas in the 80s, but there's more to the Chinese economy than real estate.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 01:25 | 2302778 jack stephan
jack stephan's picture


Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius - Meditations

Some may wonder how a Roman Emperor belongs here?  Many people feel uncomfortable with the Faith that is the foundation of NonViolent Action.  Many people consider themselves "spiritual, but not religious."   Marcus Aurelius certainly had a sense of 'order' in the universe.  Perhaps this brief excerpt will explain why and some of us will find a kindred spirit and some good common sense from this ancient Roman::

"Concentrate every minute like a Roman -- like a man -- on doing what's in front of you with precise and genuine seriousness, tenderly, willingly, with justice... The spot where a person decides to station himself, or wherever his commanding officer stations him -- well, I think that's where he ought to take his stand and face the enemy, and not worry about being killed, or about anything but doing his duty."

If we wish to make change happen, personal action and sacrifice is essential.  We will hopefully be ready to act when we have a strong sense of duty. We have quoted liberally below from the books in the following bibliography.

Marcus Aurelius Antoninus who lived from 121 AD to 180 AD was the last of the "good emperors" who governed Rome at its height.   He was Emperor from 161 AD to his natural death. The "Meditations" were personal notes to himself, not meant for general instructions, and the 'you' he refers to is himself.   As you read some of his personal thoughts below; he is attempting to answer many questions we also may be asking.  As the editor of the Meditations explains:

Why are we here?  How should we live our lives? How can we ensure we do what is right? How can we protect ourselves against the stresses and pressures of daily life.  How should we deal with pain and misfortune?

Long identified as a follower of stoicism, in his "Meditations", Marcus Aurelius shows a great mixture of common sense, especially in dealing with those we find 'annoying' -- and great confidence in the "Logos". 

The term Logos has a symantic range so broad as to be almost untranslatable.  At a basic level it designates rational, connected thought -- whether envisioned as a characteristic (rationality, the abillity to reason) or as the product of that characteristic (an intelligible utterance or a connected discourse).  Logos operates both in individuals and in the universe as a whole.  In individuals it is the faculty of reason.  On a cosmic level it is the rational principle that governs the organization of the universe.  In this sense it is synonmous with nature, "Providence", or "God." (When the author of John's Gospel tells us that "the Word" -- Logos -- was with God and is to be identified with God, he is borrowing from Stoic terminology).

All events are determined by the Logos, and follow in an unbreakable chain of cause and effect.  Stoicism is thus from the outset a deterministic system that appears to leave no room for human free will or moral responsibility.  In reality the Stoics were reluctant to accept such an arrangement, and attempted to get around the difficulty by defining free will as a voluntary accommodation to what is in any case inevitable....

But the Logos is not simply an impersonal power that governs and directs the world.  It is an actual substance that pervades that world, not in a metaphorical sense but in a form as concrete as oxygen or carbon.

Marcus develops and mixes Stoicism with other philosophies  and does not identify himself as a Stoic.  But we may all identify well with his 'three disciplines':

ONE - Perception: This requires that we maintain absolute objectivity of thought that we see things dispassionately for what they are.  We must learn to separate the mental impression we have of external events (phantasia), from the mental perception we then develop (hypolepsis).   For example, my impression that my house has just burned down is simply that -- a report of an external event conveyed to me by my senses.  By contrast, my perception that my house has burned down and I am ruined and have suffered a terrible tragedy is by no means the only possible interpretation, and I am not obliged to except it.  I may be a good deal better off if I refuse to do so. (Witness the many anecdotes of the wealthy, business leaders, sports heroes, who started from tragedy.)

TWO - Action: Governs our approach to things that are in our control, those things that we do.  If we act wrongly, then we have done serious harm to ourselves. 

It concerns our relationship with other people. All human beings possess not only a share of the Logos but also the ability to use it (which distinguishes us from animals).  To Marcus the Logos is a city and humans are its inhabitants and we have duties because of our citizenship.  We must make proper use of the Logos we have been allotted.  We are made, not for ourselves, but for others, and our nature is fundamentally unselfish.  In our relationships with others we must work for the collective good, while treating them justly and fairly as individuals.

THREE - Will: A counterpart to the discipline of action.  Governs our approach to things that are not within our control, those that we have done to us (by others or nature). Things outside our control have no ability to harm us.  Acts of wrongdoing by a human agent (robbery, torture...) harm the agent, not us.  These acts can only harm us if we choose to see them as harmful.

Excerpts from the Mediations of Marcus Aurelius:

Book Two, 1, 5: When you wake up in the morning, tell yourself: The people I deal with today will be meddling, ungrateful, arrogant, dishonest, jealous, and surly. They are like this because they can't tell good from evil.  But I have seen the beauty or good and the ugliness of evil, and have recognized that the wrongdoer has a nature related to my own... and possessing a share of the divine.  And so none of them can hurt me. No one can implicate me in ugliness.  Nor can I feel angry at my relative, or hate him.  We were born to work together like feet, hands, and eyes... To obstruct each other is unnatural.  To feel anger at someone, to turn your back on him: these are obstructions.

Concentrate every minute like a Roman -- like a man -- on doing what's in front of you with precise and genuine seriousness, tenderly, willingly, with justice...

Book Three, 7,10:  Never regard something as doing you good if it makes you betray a trust, or lose your sense of shame, or makes you show hatred, suspicion, ill will, or hypocrisy....

Forget everything else.  Keep hold of this alone and remember it.  Each of us lives only now, this brief instant.  The rest has been lived already, or is impossible to see [the future]....

Book Four, 3: ...What's there to complain about?  People's misbehavior?  But take into consideration:

  • that rational beings exist for one another;

  • that doing what's right sometimes requires patience;

  • that no one does the wrong thing deliberately;

  • and the number of people who have feuded and envied and hated and found and died and been buries.

.... and keep your mouth shut.

Book Five, 3, 19, 22, 25: If an action or utterance is appropriate, then it's appropriate for you.  Don't be put off by other people's comments and criticism.  If it's right to say or do it, then it's the right thing for you to do or say.... Don't be distracted.  Keep walking. Follow your own nature, and follow Nature -- along the road they share.

Things have no hold on the soul.  They have no access to it, cannot move or direct it.  It is moved and directed by itself alone.  It takes the things before it and interprets them as it sees fit.

Ok, Marcus Ilike your style but what happens if they dont let up...............

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 06:09 | 2302902 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

Hey Jack, great post.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 01:28 | 2302780 Paul Bogdanich
Paul Bogdanich's picture

And so what?  Oh the horror their energy production is only growing at 6% a year.  6 % a year.  That's like 5% higher than our growth rate so I guess we should be really concerned.   

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 01:31 | 2302782 ptolemy_newit
ptolemy_newit's picture

1. Yes I am in Guangxi and it was a very mild winter!


2. From my office I can see that the finished goods inventory is excessive? (scary)


3. Most (every) aluminum producer gets free (off the grid) electricity now. Sorry about your future Alcoa!


4. So many ipads and iphones 4S in use at every income level


5. The 40 construction crane has stopped and the high rise construction curtains are old and tattered.




Fri, 03/30/2012 - 01:46 | 2302794 nah
nah's picture

china is old school

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 02:50 | 2302825 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

All my China based companies are screaming for staff as are all my friends companies as are all other companies that we all come in contact with in China.  There are so few people out there willing to work, that we employers are happy just for a warm body with a good attitude that can be trained.  As soon as staff become competent at something they run off and set up their own company.

If real estate was important to the Chinese economy they wouldn't require 30% down payments for first property and require people to pay off the first property before buying the second.  Foreigner must put 50% deposit down for second hand property etc

Beijing requires harmony so is allowing all those who missed out on the property boom to get on board by flatlining property.

The reality is that China is still booming and we can't get access to debt so all growth is funded by cash. Credit cards are only used for overseas travel, debt for cars requires your property as collateral and 40% deposit, there is fuck all debt on most China property as most was purchased when the prices were 1/4, 1/3 or 1/2 of what they are now.

There is way to much nonesense written about China by those that are really just regurgitating tabloid headlines.

Sat, 03/31/2012 - 08:36 | 2306072 meatbag
meatbag's picture

"As soon as staff become competent at something they run off and set up their own company."- Plus 1 million!  Finding and keeping competent staff is the single biggest challenge now.  As I have said in other posts, its not even about the money any longer because a talented kid can start-up their own company and be a millionaire in a few years... how you design an employee retention program against that?

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 02:56 | 2302827 macroanalyst
macroanalyst's picture

No doubt, China is slowing down. Further, growth after the crisis has been fueled by gigantic amount of new loans. There might be problems for the banking and real estate sector in the foreseeable future. Having said that, one can remain bullish on long-term...:)

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 03:21 | 2302840 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

A rich Chinese friend who just build a RMB100,000,000 pharmaceutical plant when looking for bank funding could only get a loan of RMB3,000,000 the rest of the investment was funded by cash.  The banks aren't giving out loans to anyone unless you are a very large state owned entity.

Please tell me which bank is lending money and preferably which branch. Growth is all being funded by profits and cash that was tucked away. Even tiny loans of a couple of million Renminbi require the Legal Representative of the company to put personal property up as collateral. Then you get drowned in paperwork for a couple of months.  The process is so painful that the message is load and clear, if funds are needed for expansion it is easier to recapitalize by getting current or additional shareholders to cough up cash. And for the record I do not know any foreigners or Chinese that has a company in China that has anything other than token debt.

Sat, 03/31/2012 - 08:32 | 2306068 meatbag
meatbag's picture

Totally agree.  Trying to get a loan from a bank is impossible unless you have property as collateral.   However, most Chinese businesses few a loan as shame.  They feel they are not successful until they are running the company entirely on the foreigners dollar.  What is scary is that they are taking loans on property and using those loans to invest in more property.  I just don't have a feel for how leveraged the average property owner is.   However, in this sense, if the bubble were to ever burst, its easy to see that many people and or companies who are taking advantage of this easy credit on property will be in big trouble.

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 04:23 | 2302859 cnhedge
cnhedge's picture


copper price is ready for a correction.


Fri, 03/30/2012 - 05:11 | 2302874 Equites
Equites's picture

Is everyone underestimating the tremendous impact of sustainability measures the Chinese politbureau has undertaken in recent years? Isolation, hot/cold power storage & re-usage - you wouldn't believe how much companies like J&J are doing in energy savings escrow accounts... (yeah, I don't believe all of it either)

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 05:26 | 2302877 toadold
toadold's picture

Ah centrally planned econonmies. Once they mess things up the damage lingers like a cabbage fart in a Russian space station.....That's for the US, China's communist elite had longer to poop on things. 

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 06:51 | 2302930 Dollar Bill Hiccup
Dollar Bill Hiccup's picture

Nee how ma, guai lo !

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 07:26 | 2302957 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

Ni Hao

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 07:57 | 2302999 TSA gropee
TSA gropee's picture

On my 10th trip to China in 2 years and yes the incessant building is still going on as is the power transmission and distribution to support it. I'm currently working at a huge new 800kV station at Tongli, Jiangsu province and it's a state of the art, all digital (relays, optical current sensors) station. They build the equivalent of the American grid about every 5 years and I have noticed they are now requiring more of it to be from local vendors. ABB and others are still have a presence but it is of a much less percentage than previous substations I've been on.  

I'm assuming once the locals figure out our sensors and copy it my trips here will be fewer and farther between...

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 08:21 | 2303045 JaylP6
JaylP6's picture

Stock market bottom April 2012 -

Fri, 03/30/2012 - 08:30 | 2303066 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

Yeah, the economy is still going gang busters.

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