Two biggest move overnight came from everyone's favorite carry pair, the USDJPY, which may have finally read what we said yesterday, namely that with the Fed and ECB both doing its job, there is little need for the Bank of Japan to repeat its Halloween massacre for the second year in a row, and as a result will keep its QQE program unchanged. It promptly tumbled from its 121 tractor level, to just above 120.25, where BOJ bids were said to be found. With the FOMC October meeting starting today, the other overnight catalyst was not surprisingly the latest Hilsenrath scribe in which he removed any uncertainty about a Wednesday hike, "leaving mid-December as the central bank’s last chance to raise rates this year."
Last week it was all about central banks, when both the ECB and the PBOC unleashed a massive market rally. This week it will be about even more central banks, this time the Fed, which won't hike, and the BOJ, which may but most likely won't as the Fed and the ECB already did its work for it, sending the Yen tumbling with their actions and/or jawboning.
In our Chinese stock market wrap following Friday's unexpected rate cut, which saw the Shanghai Composite storm out of the gate, we said that "we would not be surprised to see China's stocks sliding back into the red very shortly as "sell the news" concerns return, and as the increasingly more addicted "markets" demand even more liquidity from central banks just to stay unchanged, let alone rise to new all time highs." Sure enough, with just minutes to go before the close, the SHCOMP wiped out all its daily gains and was set for a red close had it not been for the "national team" miraculous last minute intervention which was inevitable after Friday's PBOC rate cut, and which lifted the composite 0.5% into the green as the euphoria was rapidly evaporating.
The William F. Buckley Jr. Program at Yale recently commissioned a survey from McLaughlin & Associates about attitudes towards free speech on campus. Some 800 students at a variety of colleges across the country were surveyed. The results, though not surprising, are nevertheless alarming. By a margin of 51 percent to 36 percent, students favor their school having speech codes to regulate speech for students and faculty.
"Some activity in auto loans reminds me of what happened in mortgage-backed securities in the run-up to the crisis. We will be looking at those institutions that have a significant auto-lending operation."
The second tech bubble, one which has seen nearly 200 tech "unicorns" rising out of the ZIRP ashes in the past few years and promptly attaining valuations of over $1 billion, is bursting. WSJ reports that investment bankers cautioned Dropbox that the San Francisco company might be unable to go public at its latest private round "valuation" of $10 billion.
After yesterday's closing ramp "prudently" just ahead of an abysmal IBM earnings report with the lowest revenues since 2002, and the latest rally in capital markets which sent European stocks to their highest level since August on the back of a barrage of global bad data which has unleashed the Pavlovian liquidity dogs screaming for moar central bank bailouts, this morning has seen a modest decline in the Stoxx 600 driven by energy names, while S&P500 futures are set to open lower on IBM's disappointment at least until the latest massive BOJ USDJPY buying spree sends the pair to 120 and the S&P solidly in the green. The biggest political event overnight was the Canadian election, where Trudeau's liberals swept PM Harper from power, capping the biggest political comeback in the country's history; the Canadian dollar is largely unchanged after initially weakening then rising.
In its attempt to evade the shackles of conventional fixed and variable costs, Rio Tinto has decided to begin eliminating humans from its "workforce" altogether. According to the Chinese state media, Rio Tinto has started using automated, driverless trucks to move iron ore in its Pilbara mines, controlled from an operations center 1,200 kilometers away in Perth.
Stephen Hawking has been outspoken in recent years about the catastrophic dangers humanity faces in the 21st century. He said we should be cautious in attempting to contact aliens, warning that advanced extraterrestrial life may not be friendly toward us and could destroy the human race. He also stated we should be cautious in creating strong artificial intelligence. But recently, Hawking addressed the threat he says may be more far more dangerous to the future of human civilization than robots, aliens, or quantum particles: capitalist greed.
Venezuela’s economy is in desperate trouble. The country is highly dependent on oil reserves and has no significant substitute for black gold in the near term. That reality makes Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s recent efforts to tout the country’s technology industry laughable.
This. Will. Not. End. Well. As WSJ reports, "retailers such as Kmart and Office Depot this week are starting to roll out cards that give the recipients small amounts of stock in some of the country’s best-known companies." "I have always wanted to get into the stock market business, but I honestly don’t have the time to explore what’s going on in the market trends of the day"...