During the last week we have highlighted the frightening similarity between the speculative spike in China commodity trading (which has sent industrial metals prices soaring in yet another 'error' signal for real supply and demand) and the pump-n-dump in Chinese stocks. Specifically, as Goldman warns the factor that "concerns us the most is the increased speculation in the Chinese iron ore futures market," and now, as Bloomberg reports, it appears that bubble is bursting as Steel and Iron Ore prices tumble most in 21 months after Chinese exchanges raise margins in an attempt to curb speculation.
A market entirely supported by rumors and hearsay can rally quickly, but also lose all gains at the drop of a hat. What the Doha debacle represents is a signal that the establishment is incrementally abandoning support for market systems. This is translating to a loss of faith in central banks and major financial institutions. On top of this, look at the incredible amount of misinformation and misdirection that went into Doha, now completely exposed. The truth is crystal; the MSM lied and obfuscated helping the establishment to drive up oil prices and stocks, all for a mere six to eight weeks of market security. As soon as these lies were revealed, volatility began to return. If the oil market bubble can implode (as it already has) in such a way due to the striking of fundamentals, then stocks can also be destabilized as well.
A funny thing happened when US slapped a major tariff on China's steel exports... prices exploded higher. But the almost 50% surge in steel prices since mid-December back to 15-month highs have left traders equally split on what happens next. Will record production levels exaggerate a global glut amid tumbling exports and rising tariffs, or will China's trillion-dollar surge in credit fuel yet more so-called "iron rooster" projects driving domestic demand even higher. For now, it appears the former is more likely as US Trade reps suggested further protectionism looms.
Some 'entertainers' among the mainstream media have proclaimed the recent dead-cat-bounce in The Baltic Dry Freight Index as representative of some renaissance in China and thus the world's trade.. and thus why one should "buy buy buy" stocks. However, three quick points of note suggest this is nothing but noise as the index flounders around record lows.
If the IMF is engineering a financial crisis in Europe in order to gain more power and influence, why wouldn’t the Fed be doing the same for the IMF in America? Just as the international bankers use stimulus and rate policy as tools, so, to, do they use chaos.
"There is a concern that this competitive devaluations channel (the first link) may have broken down (to a large extent) because of the collapse in global trade. Global growth today is generating much less trade growth than in the past (chart below). As a result, currency adjustment is not enough to spur growth significantly because global trade is increasingly less important to the overall makeup of GDP. This raises the possibility that the currency war is largely futile."
Despite its 98% crash from 2008 highs, and its plunge to record (35 year-plus) lows, the recent rally (off sub-300 lows) sparked a wave of exuberance with such luminaries as Jim Cramer proclaiming this a sign that everything is fixed again in China. Having risen non-stop since Feb 10th, coincidentally the same time that the entire world suddenly and unexplainedly went full risk-on short-squeeze buy-buy-buy, The Baltic Dry Index dropped today - which should not surprise many as China's Containerized Freight Index crashes to record lows...
The Baltic Dry Index has risen for the last few weeks, buoyed by hopes (a la Iron Ore) of a National People's Congress stimulus surge from China. While the scale of the 'bounce' is negligible in real terms compared to the total collapse, it has caused such momentum-muppets as Jim Cramer to proclaim China 'fixed' and investible. So we have one quick question - if everything is awesome, why did the China Containerized Freight Index just crash to new record lows?
Everything from iron ore to copper to the Baltic Dry Index to stocks to bat guano is rallying. The problem is not a single rally passes "the sniff test:" is the rally the result of changing fundamentals, or is it merely short-covering and/or speculative hot money leaping from one rally to the next? Every one of these rallies is bogus, a travesty of a mockery of a sham of price discovery, supposedly the core function of markets. What shift in fundamentals drove this rally? Higher profits? No, profits are declining, especially once the phony adjustments are stripped away. Is the global economy strengthening? Don't make us laugh!
"It Hasn't Been This Bad Since The Viking Age": Dry Bulk CEO Warns Of Bankruptcy Tsunami, Counterparty RiskSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 03/03/2016 22:10 -0400
"In the coming months there will be a lot of bankruptcies, counterparty risk will be on everybody's lips. The market has never been this bad before in modern history. We haven't seen a market this bad since the Viking age. This is not sustainable for anybody and will lead to dramatic changes.
One question now dominates the global macro discussion: has subdued global growth and trade become the norm in the post-crisis world? That is, have lackluster growth and trade become structural and endemic rather than transient and cyclical? Spoiler alert: Yes.
The bear will soon be arriving in earnest, marauding through the canyons of Wall Street while red in tooth and claw. Our monetary central planners, of course, will once again - for the third time this century - be utterly shocked and unprepared. That’s because they have spent the better part of two decades deforming, distorting, denuding and destroying what were once serviceably free financial markets. Yet they remain as clueless as ever about the financial time bombs this inexorably fosters.
According to DB, with the vast majority of orders placed w/Chinese ship yards, the current market provides incentive (and maybe even increased scope) for owners to more aggressively pursue cancellations ahead of keel laying. The problem is that the latest order book data shows a whopping 360 dry bulk vessels over 60k tons on order at Chinese ship yards (net of typical non-deliveries). This equates to 37M tons of new capacity or 5% of the fleet!
No society wants to admit economic failure or economic sabotage, and this is why the con-game is able to continue in the face of so much concrete truth. Ultimately, the market trends and economic trends will flow into the negative. In the meantime, expect massive market rallies, rallies which will then disintegrate in a matter of days. And, whatever happens, never take what mainstream economists say very seriously. They have failed the public for long enough.