Amid expectations that The Kingdom will sell bonds as early as next month, investors are panic-buying protection against default on Saudi Arabia. The last few weeks have seen a surge in CDS notional outstanding to its highest on record even as Saudi risk has stabilized after quadrupling in the last year.
Things are so absurd in the Eurozone that the ECB is buying private placement debt with little regard for safety. In turn, private equity companies issue debt simply because they know in advance the ECB will buy it. It’s a startling example of how the market is adapting to extremes of monetary policy, and it’s a safe conclusion the experiment will not end well.
When it’s clear the game has become rigged, it’s easier and less risky to stop playing that game, and go play a different game somewhere else... There is a huge disincentive to step boldly in the direction of sanity... which serves as a dangerous feedback loop to reinforce a false narrative that everything is awesome and under control.
“Put simply, most apparent “opportunities” to obtain investment returns above zero in conventional assets over the coming decade are based on a misunderstanding of valuations, total returns, and historical yield relationships. At current valuations, virtually everything is priced for a decade of zero. The unwinding of these speculative extremes is likely to be chaotic, and will likely occur over a shorter horizon than investors imagine."
George Sokoloff, founder and CIO of Carmot Capital, explains why typical asset allocation strategies, including those employed by most "sophisticated" hedge fund managers, end up getting slaughtered during market shocks despite perceptions of being "well hedged".
"With macro this dominant, credit no longer seems bothered by defaults. S&P pointed out this week that YTD defaults have now equalled last year’s full-year total, and are running at their highest pace since 2009. Once upon a time, that would have been associated with spread widening. But not this year."
European, Asian stocks and S&P futures all fell in another quiet, low-volume early session. With oil entering a bull market yesterday, and set for its longest run of gains in 4 years after, overnight crude stumbled, and reversed early gains, falling for the first time in seven days driven by rebound in the dollar which gained versus all G-10 currencies with commodity currencies underperforming.
"I just got word from the Securities and Exchange Commission that I am to receive half of a $16.5m whistleblower award. But I refuse to take my share. Deutsche did not commit this wrongdoing. Deutsche was the victim. Meanwhile, top executives retired with multimillion-dollar bonuses."
The world’s leading governments have become decidedly fascist and are rapidly heading in a totalitarian direction. There are a number of facets to this development, all of them disturbing: The elimination of personal privacy, the creation of capital controls, confiscation of wealth, the conversion to electronic banking as the sole form of currency, international taxation standards and the creation of a police state.