Renaissance

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Stunning Images Of The World's Planned Cities, As Seen From Space





Most planned cities probably aren't designed with the view from space in mind, but, as Wired.com's Betsy Mason notes, some of them create incredible patterns on the landscape that can only be truly appreciated from above.

 
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"Game Over For Aussie Coal" As China Levies Tariffs After 10-Year Hiatus





Just months after unofficially entering the currency wars, China has torn another page from the 'causes of the great depression' playbook. As Reuters reports, for the first time in almost a decade, China - the world's top coal importer - will levy import tariffs on the commodity crushing Australian (the biggest shipper of coal to China) dreams of a commodity-based renaissance. "China is clearly moving to protect its local miners," explained one analyst, which is key since so much of the credit market is predicated on these mal-invested entities - as the China National Coal Association, urged Beijing to act swiftly to support the besieged sector, where 70% of the miners were making losses and more than half owed wages. Crucially, Indonesia - the second-biggest shipper of the fuel to China - will be exempt from the tariffs, which one trader exclaimed, means "It is game over for Australian coal."

 
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Crude Rises On News ISIS Has Entered One Of Baghdad's Suburbs





While the western world couldn't care less about the fate of some backwater town on the border between Syria and Turkey, it certainly cares about what happens to the Iraqi oilfields located south of Baghdad (which serve to determine the marginal price of oil around the world). Well, the world may not care, but crude traders certainly do, and the reason why oil appears to be rising in recent trade is due to news that ISIS militants have infiltrated one of Baghdad's outer suburbs, Abu Ghraib which is only eight miles from the runway perimeter of Baghdad's international airport.

 
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Russia Central Banks Scrambles To Halt Plunging Ruble, Spends Over $2 Billion In Last Three Days As Inflation Soars





After stoically ignoring the impact of its tumbling currency on the domestic economy (and as a reminder, Japan would kill for a currency collapse of this magnitude: just think of the "economic renaissance" that would result if only Abenomics was right about killing your currency leading to growth... which it isn't), the Kremlin is finally starting to feel the pinch leading to the biggest central bank intervention in FX markets since the start of the Ukraine campaign, buying Rubles for a third consecutive day at an amount of over $2 billion, with $1.75 billion purchased in the first two days of the current intervention attempt, and another $420 million in foreign currencies sold overnight according to Bank of Russia data.

 
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ISM Biggest Miss Since January: Orders Tumble, Employment Slides, Backlogs Contract, Construction Spending Negative





So much for the string of near record ISM prints. Oh... and the recovery too.

 
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Final Q2 GDP Surges 4.6% Thanks To Profit Definition Change; Personal Consumption Weaker Than Expected





The good news in the just released final Q2 GDP estimate soared by 4.6%, just as Wall Street expected, which was the biggest quarterly jump since 2011 Q4 2011, driven by gains in business spending, where mandatory forced Obamacare outlays led to a $17.5 billion chained-dollars increase in Healthcare spending to $1815.9 billion. Also helping were corporate profits which rose 8.4% in Q2, the most since Q3 2010, once again courtesy of adjustment in definitions (recall the IVA vs CCAdj change we discussed previously). 

 
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Frontrunning: September 23





  • U.S., backed by Arabs, launches first strikes on fighters in Syria (Reuters, BBG)
  • But not all all back: Turkey Bars Kurds From Entering Syria to Fight Islamic State (BBG)
  • Dollar Weakens on Airstrikes; Europe Stocks Drop (BBG)
  • Ready for Rate Riot? Emerging Markets Set to Follow Fed (BBG)
  • White House fence jumper had ammunition, machete in car, prosecutors say (WaPo)
  • El-Erian "would have done things differently" (Reuters)
  • Eurozone business growth slows in September, PMI survey finds (BBC)
  • Shrinking Bond Desks Taken by Journeymen as Masters Fade (BBG)
  • Manufacturing Rebound Relieves Growth Concerns in China (BBG)
  • Former Trader Quits Playboy Club to Open Own Restaurant (BBG)
 
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Hilsenrath Backs Away From His "Considerable Time" Prediction





Yesterday's exuberant equity market reaction has been largely defined by the mainstream media as driven by WSJ Hilsenrath's 'confirmation' that Yellen will keep the uber-dovish phrase "considerable time" in the FOMC statement today. So, we wonder, why did the Fed-whisperer, after markets had closed last night, issue a quasi-retraction of his prediction explaining that instead of some prohetical "I just know" statement, it was a "best guess," as he concluded, "will the Fed take these steps? Only the people in the room know that. The rest of us will see Wednesday afternoon." It appears the sell-side disagrees with him on the language...

 
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Hilsenrath Front-Runs Fed: Hints "Considerable Time" Language Will Remain





The last week has been dominated by sell-side strategists raising hawkish concerns about this week's FOMC with a focus on the drop of the "considerable time" language describing the period from the end of QE to the start of rate hikes. The Wall Street Journal's Fed-whisperer Jon Hilsenrath just dropped a rather large hint that that the "considerable period" language will remain... Given the economic backdrop, they don’t want to send a signal right now that rate increases are imminent." Here's what the street thinks...

 
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What It Looks Like When The Second Auto Subprime Bubble Pops





One can kiss the US subprime-driven "manufacturing renaissance" goodbye. The reason, as we reported moments ago, Industrial Production dropped 0.1%, driven by a -0.4% contraction in manufacturing, the worst print since the "harsh winter collapse" of January 2014. The answer to the key question, what drove the tumble, is simple: what goes up has come down, in this case production of Motor Vehciles and Part, after posting its best number in 5 years, just posted... it worst monthly drop in five years, or since May 2009 to be precise. As the chart below shows, following July's month's 9.3% surge in production of motor vehicles and parts, August has come and wiped out all the gains, with a 7.6% plunge, the bigest collapse since May 2009.

 
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Quality Of Jobs Created In August Deteriorates Again





Back in 2011 we noted that while the market, and at the time, the Fed, have been focused exclusively on the quantity of jobs created each month, a far more important aspect of the US economic recovery is the quality of newly created jobs. It took the Fed about three years to catch up but it finally did, and Yellen no longer cares so much about the headline NFP print or the unemployment number but rather how good the newly created jobs are, manifesting in the quality of wages and earnings. So what was the quality of seasonally-adjusted job gains in August? In a word: disturbing. Of the 142K jobs created, just under half came from the lowest paying jobs possible: education and health; leisure and hospitality; and temp-help. The best paying jobs, finance and information, added a whopping 4K jobs between them. Finally, about that much delayed US manufacturing renaissance: stick a fork in it - in August the number of manufacturing jobs created was exactly 0.

 
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"God of Crude Oil Trading" Goes All In On Crude At $150 Bet





Andy Hall - known as the God of Crude Oil Trading to some of his peers - has, according to Bloomberg, built his success on a simple creed: Everyone who disagrees with him is wrong. He was one of the few traders who anticipated both the run-up in and the eventual crash of oil prices in 2008. Hall has made billions for the companies for which he’s traded by placing one aggressive bet after another; and now, he is all-in again. Hall is going all in on a bet that the shale-oil boom will play out far sooner than many analysts expect, resulting in a steady increase in prices to as much as $150 a barrel in five years or less. As one industry CEO warned, "anybody who bets against Andy Hall might be making a poor bet."

 
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China Has Lost 55% Of Its Most Valuable Resource





Roughly 60% of California right now is suffering “extreme drought” conditions. 30% of the state is in “severe drought”. And 10% of the state is only under “drought”. In other words, roughly the entire state - the 8th largest economy in the world – is facing a severe shortage of water. But if you think that’s bad, China is about to take over the spotlight yet again. A study by China’s Ministry of Water Resources found that approximately 55% of China’s 50,000 rivers that existed in the 1990s have disappeared.

 
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