- The Bild is now a source for EURUSD stop hunts: Germany eyes 'bundled' loan payment to Greece-paper (Reuters, Bloomberg)
- Congress comes back Tuesday to confront “fiscal cliff.” (Reuters)
- Gen. John Allen ensnared in Petraeus scandal (Politico)
- FBI Agent in Petraeus Case Under Scrutiny (WSJ)
- Comcast's NBCUniversal unit lays off 500 employees (Reuters)
- University Fees Stoke U.K. Inflation (WSJ)
- Consumers Closing Wallets in Japan Add to Noda’s Woes (Bloomberg)
- John McAfee Wanted for Murder... and explaining bathsalt anal suppositories (Gizmodo)
- Europe Gives Greece 2 More Years to Reach Deficit Targets (Bloomberg)
- Where Spain Is Worse Than Greece (WSJ)
- Microsoft's Windows unit head, once a possible CEO, exits (Reuters)
- Glitch stops NYSE trading in 216 companies (FT)
- Large European Banks Stash Cash (WSJ)
- The death of San Bernardino: How a vicious circle of self-interest sank California city (Reuters)
- Apple stores most productive US shops (FT)
- Treasuries See U.S. Falling Over Cliff as Yields Converge (Bloomberg)
- Bra-Bodysuits Make H&M One Hit Wonder as Zara Prospers (Bloomberg)
Two months ago, when we commented on Apple's pyrrhic courtroom victory in which it managed to halt sales of older generation Samsung smartphones - a "victory" which would backfire with Samsung phone sales soaring, while AAPL results missed, forcing the company to accelerate its product launch cadence to a ridiculous 3 months with news that the iPhone 5s is already in the works a month after the launch of the iphone 5 - we said "The paradox here is that AAPL's victory is quite pyrrhic: if and when Samsung feels sufficiently threatened, it can just pull a Gazprom and halt the supply of mission critical components to the world's biggest publicly traded company." Naturally, the hyperbolic all out response would mean an immediate nuclear war of attrition between the two electronics giants. Instead Samsung would be even better served to show Apple who is boss in quantized increments. Today, it has done just that, forcing Apple to swallow a 20% price increase on hundreds of millions of Samsung application processors used in iPads and iPhones. "Apple first disapproved it, but finding no replacement supplier, it accepted the (increase.)" Game, set, match Samsung.
With AAPL's share price 'off the lows', hope is re-emerging that the company-that-can-do-no-wrong is back (23% decline aside). However, a funny thing happened on the way to the AAPL store. Digitimes is reporting speculating (via China Times) that the tech giant is preparing for trial production of the iPhone 5S in December with an iPad update shortly after. It would seem to us that Apple is scrambling - how does a three-month upgrade-cycle sync with a two-year non-free upgrade contract from the telecoms providers? It appears clear that few will participate and upgrade-cycle take-up estimates will have to be reduced. Furthermore, following in the footsteps of Bernanke's some-is-good so more-is-better strategem, we wonder whether the public will begin to adjust their behavior and delay purchase in an ever-decreasing sales loop since the iPhone 'n+1' is only a few months away... especially as the marginal improvement approaches its zero-limit.
- Jefferies to be bought by Ian Cumming's Leucadia in an all-stock deal for $3.59 billion or about $17/share (WSJ)
- FBI Scrutinized on Petraeus (WSJ)
- Identity of second woman emerges in Petraeus' downfall (Reuters)
- SEC staffers used government computers for personal use (Reuters)
- Japan edges towards fifth recession in 15 years (FT)
- Europe Finance Chiefs Seek Greek Pact as Economy Gloom Grows (BBG)
- Americans Say Europe Lesson Means Act Now as Austerity Will Fail (BBG) - of course it would be great if Europe had ever implemented austerity...
- Greece battles to avert €5bn default (FT)
- You don't bail out the US government for nothing: No Individual Charges In Probe of J.P. Morgan (WSJ)
- Israel Warns of Painful Response to Fire From Gaza, Syria (BBG)
- Greece's far-right party goes on the offensive (Reuters)
- Don’t fear fiscal cliff, says Democrat (FT)
- Apple Settles HTC Patent Suits Shifting From Jobs’ War (BBG)
- Man Set on Fire in Argentina Over Debt (EFE)
- Iraq cancels $4.2-billion weapons deal with Russia over corruption concerns (Globe and Mail)
- An Honest Guy on Wall Street (Bloomberg)
Economists the world over can take comfort that the laws of supply and demand still largely rule the marketplace. However, we believe there is a noted exception for a yellow, largely useless metal. A metal that just happens to have shaped the world’s monetary systems for the last several thousand years. Gold’s “supply” traditionally defined as global mining production is virtually meaningless in determining its’ price. How can this be? Gold, even when viewed as a commodity, is unique in that it is not consumed. Rather than supply in the traditional sense, what drives the gold price is the percentage of the existing stock (170,000 tons) that is available for sale on any given day. Gold, in our opinion is what is often referred to as a Giffen good. We believe that a massive revaluation of gold denominated in dollars can happen quite suddenly, almost overnight. But not because of any sustained long term demand for gold, but simply because owners of metal simply withdraw it from sale, sending the stock to flow ratio to infinity. This is why understanding gold’s stock to flow ratio is so vital. What happens to the “price” of gold when it ceases bidding for dollars? Zero. Or infinity. Take your pick.
Now that I've released my early Apple research and the collapsing stock cat's out the bag, I hear very, very few Margin Compression theory bashers. Crickets anyone? Let's dissect the near 25% drop and how I made the call.
Back in the late 1980s, the entire business world was obsessed with Japan. It's no wonder that this was the case: here was a country which had emerged from the ashes of World War 2 and had become the world's second-largest economy. They made high-quality cars, consumer electronics, semiconductors, plus they seemed to have a management style and work ethic that put the "good old USA" to shame.
Do we have what it takes to get from here to there? This apparently simple question offers profound insights into the dynamics of individuals, households, enterprises and nation-states. If we answer this question honestly, it establishes a "road map" of what must be in place before a progression from here to a more sustainable future ("there") can take place. For most of the world's economies and societies, the answer is a resounding "no." The U.S. Status Quo is as intellectually bankrupt as it is financially bankrupt. Our "leadership" cluelessly clings to the only model they know: incentivize "consumers" into borrowing more money to buy more "stuff" from China, in the magical-thinking belief this churn will somehow lead to sustainable "growth." This is akin to handing a parched alcoholic a fresh bottle of whiskey to wean him of his addiction. There are more than a few lessons to be learned from Japan...
Hmmm… Initial rebound after yesterday’s bashing was rather modest, settling on a bit better and awaiting US input. Spain overdid its auction, which looked just good in the sense of being able to say it sold a new bond for size – to its dealers. ECB, happy to have provided the idea of OMT to save the world from simple panic, now going pessimistic (in non-panicky way). It’s just soft out there… It’s the economy, Stupid! And it is weak.
"Bop 'Til You Drop " (Bunds 1,36% -2; Spain 5,84% +16; Stoxx 2479% +0,1%; EUR 1,275)
Look up the phrase "inflection point" - it will be the most hated phrase by all those who day after day repeat that there is now way AAPL can ever drop because its "forward multiple is low" (hint: forward multiples are simply functions of forward earnings, and once the fadness and coolness of a memo, no matter how infectious in the past, is gone, so are "forward earnings', especially once the sellside behavioral finance lemmings crew takes the machete to their Price Targets and has to justify why it has been massively wrong... and also for those who have a calculator, calculate how many years of dividends $100 billion in cash funds before the cash hoard also runs out).
AAPL had crawled it way into the green in the pre-open, bumping around yesterday's closing VWAP. In the early minutes of the US day session open, we saw very heavy selling volume in AAPL (and surprisingly S&P 500 futures ramped vertically). This smells a lot like someone getting a tap on the shoulder on their 'hedged' Long AAPL, Short ES position. AAPL bounced off yesterday's lows to get back to VWAP and then the real selling began... At $542 now, AAPL is over $160 off the highs and reverting back to the market cap of the entire European banking system. With 230 hedge funds holding this angel of death... small doors and large crowds do not mix... paging Topeka? Widows, orphans, and value investors first...
UPDATE: Within the first 90 minutes of the open, AAPL has traded down to under $564 - officially entering bear-market territory (down 3.4% today)... These are 5-month lows for AAPL
From the $705.07 jubilant highs on 9/21, the most widely held stock among hedge funds is sliding in the pre-market very close to its bear-market barrier. A 20% slide from those 'peak AAPL' levels is around $564, less than $10 away. For some this is the buying opportunity of a lifetime as those $1111 price targets and Apple TVs are far from 'priced in'; for others, every VWAP rip is now faded and orderly lines are being formed at the 'get me out of this' window... What was the alpha-generating master-of-the-universe-making stock in the last few years, is now the overweight, over-crowded, waiting-for-the-straw-on-the-camel's-back holding that managers love to hate as their bogeys drift and portfolios plunge. So much for buying high-beta to chase performance eh?
FINRA Arrives After The Fact To Put Out The Fire Caused By Burning Apples At Dick Boves Employer, More Jokes To Ensue!Submitted by Reggie Middleton on 11/06/2012 11:29 -0400
Rochdale Securities executes a trade levered at 294x its capital base, in direct contradiction to BoomBustBlog research & FINRA arrives with a fire hose to wet the smoldering ashes.
Today it is all about the elections. It is not about last night's relatively surprising RBA decision to not cut rates (on an attempt to create a reflexive feedback loop when it said that China has bottomed; it hasn't, and the RBA will be forced into another "surprising" rate cut as it did previously). It is also not about Europe missing its Service PMI estimate (just like the US), with the composite printing at 45.7 on expectations of a 45.8 print (with both core countries - Germany and France - missing badly, at 48.4 and 44.6 on expectations of 49.3 and 46.2, respectively). It is not about reports that the EU believes Spain's GDP will again contract more than expected (it will, and certainly without any reports or beliefs). It is not about Greece selling €1.3 billion in 26-week bills even as, according to ANA, its striking power workers have taken 5 power plants online just as winter approaches. It is not about Jean-Claude Juncker telling the truth for once, and saying that Europe is still in crisis, and is facing the viability of the Euro (after saying weeks ago that the Euro is unshakable) and that some countries aren't facing up to their responsibilities. It most certainly isn't about German factory orders finally collapsing as the country is no longer able to delay its slide into full-blown recession, with a September decline of 3.3% on expectations of a modest drop of -0.5%, from the previous decline of 0.8% (the German ministry said that a weak Eurozone and lack of global growth are taking its toll; they will continue taking its toll for years and decades longer). No. It is all about the US elections, with the peak frenzy starting as soon as polls officially close at 8 pm. Everything else is noise.
More of my contrarian, yet highly accurate Apple research released free to the public, unfortunately not in time to save Rochdale's ass...