Baseline Scenario

What Could Possibly Go Wrong? - Why This Time Is Not Different

In the 1990s, stocks continued to rise relentlessly for years, even after then Fed Chair Greenspan warned of irrational exuberance in late 1996.  Last decade, the rally in home prices continued as ever more people appeared convinced that home prices never fall.  This time around, we are eight years into a bull market. As in those times, investors have all but given up betting against conventional wisdom...but this time is not different...

People Are Suddenly Worried About China (Again)

While Trump seemingly remains the only topic worthy of discussion blanketing the airwaves, as the following chart from Goldman demonstrates, it has been China where policy uncertainty has stealthily exploded in the past three months.

Another Greek WTF Showdown Moment Explained

The IMF has once again threatened to pull out of the Troika following a warning that Eurogroup loan measures are not enough for Greek debt. This is one of those WTF moments where statements from Greece, from the IMF, and also the Eurozone make no apparent sense.

Inflation Is About To Spike Due To The "Base Effect"

In June, oil was still down 20% relative to a year prior. Last month, that year-over-year change had already risen to 0%. And if prices hold at current levels, oil will be up 45% at year-end. To repeat for emphasis, that’s -20% YoY to +45% YoY in the space of six months."

Deutsche Bank "Shocked" At "Disorderly, Dramatic" Pound Flash Crash

According to Deutsche Bank, the GBP move has been "shocking", and it will only get worse. The German bank's FX analyst George Saravelos writes in a note to clients that Deutsche Bank expects the pound to revisit lows seen during the Asia session and forecasts GBP/USD to trade at 1.15 by next year.

"All Eyes On Central Banks" In September, But "No Reason To Smile"

September will be quite a busy month for investors since there are around 30 major central banks meetings scheduled. Since the Bank of England’s last policy announcement, the total monthly amount in global official quantitative easing has reached almost $200 billion, which corresponds, for the purpose of comparison, to Portugal’s annual GDP in 2015. Long-rumoured and oft-discussed, QE infinity is now a reality.

S&P Downgrades European Union From AA+ To AA - Full Text

On June 30, 2016, S&P Global Ratings lowered its long-term issuer credit rating on supranational institution, the European Union (EU), to 'AA' from  'AA+'. The 'A-1+' short-term rating was affirmed. The outlook is stable.

With 'Recovery' Disproved, There Is Every Need To Examine The Worst Case

There is a great deal that is wrong with mainstream economic commentary, starting with its unwavering devotion to orthodox economics and unshakable faith in their “stimulus.” No matter how little is actually stimulated there is never any doubt that the media will simultaneously forget the last one while lavishing praise on the next one. It is, however, the actual economic commentary itself that may be the most damaging. Because nothing works, every news story is printed from the shallowest, narrowest perspective. It is a grave disservice to the public and journalism.

The Enabler & The Lifeline: Diamond Resorts & Quorum FCU

Diamond has a good thing going with Quorum: they get access to ample credit, especially for those applicants with weaker credit profiles. From a Diamond investor's perspective, it would be a shame if anything changed. The post credit-crisis strategy of focusing on esoteric lending opportunities like VOI (as well as taxi medallions, hearing aids and fertility treatments) to generate revenues and membership has run into both a broader slowdown in the consumer credit cycle as well as more specific problems, like an increasingly worried regulator.