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Frontrunning: December 22





  • Battered oil wins respite, lifts stocks (Reuters)
  • Oil Halts Decline as Emerging Market Stocks Climb on China (BBG)
  • Bonds Set to Beat Stocks Globally in 2015 After China Falters (BBG)
  • SpaceX Falcon rocket nails safe landing in pivotal space feat (Reuters)
  • China Leaders Flag More Stimulus After Top Economic Meeting (BBG)
  • SEC to Retrench Case Against SAC’s Steven A. Cohen (WSJ)
 
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Futures Rise, Drop, Then Rise Again In Illiquid Session After China Promises More Stimulus





It has been a seesaw session with U.S. stock index futures following their dramatic buying burst in the last half hour of market trading yesterday by first rising, then falling, then rising again alongside European equities both driven almost tick for tick with even the smallest move in the carry trade of choice, the USDJPY, even as Asian shares trade near intraday highs after China’s leaders signaled they will take further steps to support growth.

 
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Apple Cuts Latest iPhone Prices By 16% In India As AAPL Stock Re-Enters Bear Market





Today we get another confirmation just how bad Apple end-demand has become, with news out of India that Apple has cut prices of its latest iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus by up to 16% just two months after their launch in India to boost flagging sales in what is historically its most crucial quarter as demand for the flagship devices nosedived from a Diwali high.

 
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2015 Year In Review - Scenic Vistas From Mount Stupid





“To the intelligent man or woman, life appears infinitely mysterious, but the stupid have an answer for everything.” ~Edward Abbey

 
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CISA Is Now The Law: How Congress Quietly Passed The Second Patriot Act





Update: CISA is now the law: OBAMA SIGNS SPENDING, TAX BILL THAT REPEALS OIL EXPORT BAN

"They’re kind of pulling a Patriot Act." When Obama signs the $1.1 trillion Spending Bill in a few hours, as he will, it will be official: the second Patriot Act will become the law, and with it what little online privacy US citizens may have had, will be gone.

 
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David Stockman Warns "Dread The Fed!" - Sell The Bonds, Sell The Stocks, Sell The House





Yellen and her cohort have no clue, however, that all of their massive money printing never really left the canyons of Wall Street, but instead inflated the mother of all financial bubbles. So they are fixing to blow-up the joint for the third time this century. That was plain as day when our Keynesian school marm insisted that the Third Avenue credit fund failure this past week was a one-off event - a lone rotten apple in the barrel. Now that is the ultimate in cluelessness.

 
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Frontrunning: December 18





  • Oil heads for third straight weekly loss as supply weighs (Reuters)
  • BOJ's $2.5 Billion ETF Boost Seen Having Little Impact on Stocks (BBG)
  • Japan core CPI seen flat in November, household spending down (Reuters)
  • Dollar gets altitude sickness as BOJ disappoints (Reuters)
  • Fed Hikes, but Some Rates Veer Lower (WSJ)
  • White House calls for 'common sense steps' to help Puerto Rico (Reuters)
 
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Frontrunning: December 15





  • Global stocks rise but oil, Fed keep investors nervous (Reuters)
  • Janet Yellen: An orthodox economist for unorthodox times (Reuters)
  • House Democrats Said to Be Open to Lifting Oil Export Ban (BBG)
  • Don't Count on an Oil Rally If U.S. Crude Export Ban Is Lifted (BBG)
  • Germany welcomes 34-state Islamic military alliance against terrorism (Reuters)
  • U.S. soldier Bergdahl may face life sentence in court-martial over desertion (Reuters)
 
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Futures Surge, Oil Rebounds As Fed Starts Historic Two-Day "Rate Hike" Meeting





The start of the Fed's most eagerly awaited two-day policy meeting in years has finally arrived with the market expecting Yellen to announce the first 25 bps rate hike in 9 years tomorrow with nearly 80% probability, and so far US equity futures are enjoying a last minute relief rally, while emerging market stocks rose for the first day in ten after the longest losing run since June. Europe's Stoxx 600 Index has also rebounded from a five-day losing streak, the worst in over four months.

 
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Frontrunning: December 14





  • Oil prices drop towards 11-year lows on worsening glut (Reuters)
  • Third Avenue Seen by Top Investors as Fueling More Carnage (BBG)
  • Lucidus Has Liquidated $900 Million Credit Funds, Plans to Shut (BBG)
  • Investor nerves tested with yuan, oil, Fed in play (Reuters)
  • Junk Bonds Stagger as Funds Flee (WSJ)
  • Seattle lawmakers set to vote on allowing Uber, other drivers to unionize (Reuters)
 
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JPM Takes The Axe To iPhone Sales Estimates, Says Consensus Is 10% Too High





"1Q16 bears potential downside risks, while 2Q16 Street estimates seem unrealistic: TSMC saw 10% order cuts in November, which we believe is from Apple business with the impact during the end of 1Q16 or early 2Q. We believe 45-50mn is a more reasonable target. We expect to see meaningful stock price corrections for Apple supply chain names in 1Q16 with lowered Street expectations and disappointing Apple sell-through numbers."

 
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The New Crypto Wars – FBI Director James Comey Threatens Silicon Valley





The U.S. establishment has been aggressively pushing against the American public’s right to private communications, i.e. encryption, ever since the terror attacks in Paris. This push continues unabated, with the latest shots fired earlier this week by FBI chief James Comey at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. I don’t want to tell them how to do their business... but there are costs to being an American business."

 
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Frontrunning: December 10





  • Win or Lose, Trump Has Already Left His Mark on Republican Primary (BBG)
  • S&P 500 Futures Rise With Miners; Oil Erases Gains, Euro Drops (BBG)
  • U.S. top court divided over affirmative action in college admissions (Reuters)
  • San Bernardino Shooter Said to Have Planned an Attack in 2012 (WSJ)
  • Gun buyer and gunman linked through marriage, previous plot (AP)
 
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After Vicious Rollercoaster Session, Global Stocks Flat, US Futures Stage Tepid Rebound In Illiquid Chaos





After yesterday's rollercoaster session in both the S&P and in oil, where initially stocks soared alongside oil, only to promptly tumble as stops were taken out and as the refiners' inventory strategy was exposed after the DOE's latest weekly numbers were released, it has been a quieter session so far, though maybe not for China where stocks jumped at the open only to fizzle and close at the lows in what appears to be ever less intervention by the market manipulating "National Team."

 
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Why Diversification Is For Losers





"Invest for the long-term," "buy-and-hold," "stay diversified," are the mantra of every asset-gathering commission-taking 'manager' out there... However, as JPMorgan notes, empirically that is a loser's bet. In fact, investors owning just the top 10 performers of the S&P 500 has never suffered a single rolling 12 month period loss (lowest was April 2009 +0.24%).

 
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