Market Wrap: Futures Lower After BOJ Disappoints, ECB's Nowotny Warns "Not To Get Overexcited"; China Soars

Three days after Chinese stocks suffered their biggest plunge in 7 years, the bubble euphoria is back and laying ruin to the banks' best laid plans that this selloff will finally be the start of an RRR-cut, after China's habitual gamblers promptly forget the market crash that happened just 48 hours ago and once again went all-in, sending the Shanghai Composite soaring most since October 9, 2009.  It wasn't just China that appears confused: so is the BOJ whose minutes disappointed markets which had been expecting at least a little additional monetary goosing from the Japanese central bank involving at least a cut of the rate on overnight excess reserves, sending both the USDJPY and US equity futures lower. Finally, in the easter egg department, with the much-anticipated ECB announcement just 24 hours away, none other than the ECB's Ewald Nowotny threw a glass of cold water in the faces of algos everywhere when he said that tomorrow's meeting will be interesting but one "shouldn’t get overexcited about it."

The Road To The Welfare State: Why 50% Of "Exceptional" America Gets Checks From Uncle Sam

Despite tactical, rhetorical opposition to further expansion of the entitlement state by many voices in Washington, and firm resistance by an honorable and principled few, collusive bipartisan support for an ever-larger welfare state is the central fact of politics in our nation’s capital today, as it has been for decades. Until and unless America undergoes some sort of awakening that turns the public against its blandishments, or some sort of forcing financial crisis that suddenly restricts the resources available to it, continued growth of the entitlement state looks very likely in the years immediately ahead. And in at least that respect, America today does not look exceptional at all.

Saxo Bank Warns "This Is The Endgame For Central Banks"

Major central banks claim to be independent, but they are totally under the control of politicians. Many developed countries have tried to anchor an independent central bank to offset pressure from politicians and that’s all well and good in principle until the economy spins out of control – at zero-bound growth and rates central banks and politicians becomes one in a survival mode where rules are broken and bent to fit an agenda of buying more time. What comes now is a new reality...

Presenting The 2015 "Shadow Of Crisis Has Passed" State Of The Union - Live Webcast & Full Speech

UPDATE: Full SOTU Speech released - "THE SHADOW OF CRISIS HAS PASSED"

By now it is well known that The State of The Union tonight will be about President Obama's Robin-Hood Agenda. Furthermore, it is entirely clear that his proposals have no chance of becoming law. As WaPo's Marc Thiessen notes, Obama is not delusional, his move is completely and transparently political... And just as Eric Cantor suggests will merely serve to inflame the GOP. From taxes to cyber security and from community college to housing... in 50-65 minutes, all will be clear...

The Thinking & Drinking Man's Guide To The State Of The Union

In Zero Hedge tradition we provide the thinking man's (unfortunately The State of the Union has just got dumber and dumber over the years) and drinking man's (for those who need libation to persevere through the populism) guide to tonight's imperial leader's prognostications of wealth redistribution. Last year's SOTU saw the most uses of the word "folks" and we are betting (figuratively of course) that tonight's speech will top that for "Peak Folks". Obama has used "love" more than Clinton and "Energy" more than Bush...

Spot The (IMF) Difference

Expectations for global economic growth in 2015 have been falling for almost 2 years... and so the ever hockey-stickian IMF has finally started to catch down to that consensus trend - don't worry though, we are sure 2016 (or 2116) will be a great year...

11 Facts That Won't Be In Tonight's State Of The Union

When President Obama ascends to the podium this evening to deliver his State of the Union address, he’ll undoubtedly shine a spotlight on the many strengths of America. The real issue, however, isn’t where the United States is today. The problem is where it’s going. And quickly...

Investors Are Losing Faith And "Markets Will Riot" Warns Albert Edwards

Global markets face three risks, according to Edwards: bearishness in the U.S. government bond market, a flawed confidence that the U.S. is in a self-sustaining recovery and undue faith in the relationship between quantitative easing (QE) and the equity markets. “It doesn’t matter how much QE is spewing out of the US,” he said. “The markets will lose confidence that the policymakers are in control of events, just as they did in 90's Japan. They lost faith that the policymakers were in control. This is the biggest risk out there.”

"This Is A Race To The Bottom Where No Fiat Currency Wins"

Following another frustrating year in the previous metals markets, 2015 is showing signs that change is afoot. As Santiago Capital's Brent Johnson notes in this brief presentation, while being 'wrong' for the last 2 years on gold has been painful, is it any less crazy to believe that it will turnaround that to believe the hype that The Fed will raise rates once again (just like it promised in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and now 2015...) - who is really losing their credibility? With the world's fiat currencies waging war and dislocations mounting, gold is no longer the 'David' underdog fighting against the 'Goliath' central banks... but is - as Alan Greenspan opined - "the premier currency. No fiat currency, including the dollar, can match it."

Nisman Murdered? Suicide Story Crumbles After No Gunpowder Found On Argentine's Hands

When news broke of the death, by gunshot wound to the head, of Alberto Nisman - the prosecutor who was due within hours to deliver testimony implicating the Argentine President in covering up the investigation into a bombing in 1994 - it seemed oddly quick for police to rule it suicide within hours (especially after his earlier concerns that "I could end up dead because of this.") Today's news from The Buenos Aires Herald that the "unexpected result" of forensic analysis of Nisman’s body confirmed that there were no traces of gunpowder on his hands suggests (despite experts still proclaiming it does not rule out suicide) has prompted many questions over just how he died. Even the US has offered help... and protests are growing larger.