Following yesterday's dramatic geopolitical shock, U.S. equity index futures rise as Russia has not escalated the confrontation with Turkey as some had feared, while Asian shares fall, reversing earlier gains. European stocks are rallying and the euro is falling on the back of a Reuters report that the ECB is mulling new measures to prop up lending, although it’s not clear at this point what the real impact from these measures would be.
Amid all the singing and dancing over Spain's miraculous recovery and Europe's renaissance on the back of Draghi's money-printing machine, it appears - just like in America - that below the glossy veneer of engineered equity and bond prices, all is not well. As Xinhua reports, the average wage in Spain has fallen to its lowest level since 2007, according to figures released by the Spanish Ministry of Finance, and after peaking at 19.3 million in 2009, the number of workers is also collapsing. It appears Catalan is righty to want out...
Spot rates for transporting containers from Asia to Northern Europe have crashed a stunning 70% in the last 3 weeks alone. This almost unprecedented divergence from seasonality has only occurred at this scale once before 2008!
In what amounts to evidence that the subprime auto problem is indeed growing, The New York Fed's Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit (out today) shows that lenders extended more than $110 billion in auto loans to borrowers with credit scores below 660 over the past six months alone.
Having fallen for 20 straight days, crushing the hopes and dreams of the mid-year bounce - and thoroughly breaking down from seasonally positive tendencies - The Baltic Dry Freight Index has collapsed to all-time (back to 1984) record lows. As on shipping broker exclaimed, “This market is looking like a disaster and the rates are a reflection of that. It is looking scary for the market and it doesn’t look like there is going to be any life in the market in the near term.”
China's exports fell for the fourth consecutive month in October as evidence of collapsing global demand and trade continues to pile up. “A lot of Westerners think this helped us out a lot. But the 2% depreciation actually hurt us. It was in every newspaper and customers called us within hours pushing for 6% discount, so we had to give them 4%."
...more Venzuelans than Americans believe their children's financial futures will be more secure than their own...
- China economic growth seen slowing despite policy easing (Reuters)
- FBI, Justice Department Investigating Daily Fantasy Sports Business Model (WSJ)
- Obama to slow pace of withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan (Reuters)
- Corporate America's Epic Debt Binge Leaves $119 Billion Hangover (BBG)
- Islamic State battles insurgents as Syria army prepares assault (Reuters)
- Why Hillary Clinton Can’t Win by Going After the NRA (BBG)
Given the fact that for the first time since the recession, manufacturing has added zero jobs this year, that ADP just saw a drop in manufacturing jobs, Markit reports September US Manufacturing PMI has stagnated for the last 2 months at 2 year lows (printing 53.1 final vs 53.0 prelim). Worst still, and confirming even further the demise of the US manufacturing "renaissance", the Employment sub-index dropped to 50.8 - the lowest since June 2013. As Markit sums up, "The Fed is therefore likely to keep an open mind as to whether tighter policy is appropriate given current economic conditions and await a clearer idea of the health of the economy in the fourth quarter."
The data, according to many analysts, have been broadly supportive, with stronger growth and a tightening in the labor market that should allow the Fed to be "reasonably confident" that inflation will gradually return to target. That said, heightened global risks could lead to a tactical delay. Economisseds remain evenly split on the prospect of the first rate increase in 9 years.
Ironic, because it is precisely CNBC's constant cheerleading of what little viewers it had left that pushed the market to such nosebleed levels that on August 24 it suffered its second flash crash in just five years. It is even more ironic, because instead of a rational, objective coverage of the newsflow, the constant stream of cherry-picked, double seasonally adjusted good news is precisely why viewers had left the Comcast cable station in droves realizing the disconnect between the economy and stocks is simply too gargantuan to stomach, and that they are being lied to. As a result, it wasn't until the much dreaded market crash that viewers finally came back. At least some of them.
The American dream has become perverted into the equivalent of hoping to pick a winning economic lottery ticket: hoping that you somehow will become one of the lucky 0.00001% who strike it big and make millions upon millions of Dollars.
Hope, quite simply, just isn’t close to enough for a real recovery. There is an undeniable element of troubling prevarication in the whole attempt to coax unearned optimism, as taken to the extreme it means that policymakers will never quite be honest about especially realistic downsides. That may even mean, in their zeal to “fool” consumers, they fool themselves on the circular logic.
With all eyes currently transfixed on Iran’s nuclear future, there is seemingly little attention being paid to another landmark Middle Eastern nuclear trend, spearheaded by Russia.