• EconMatters
    11/24/2015 - 14:25
    Focus on policies promoting economic growth, lower taxes, and spending tax receipts more efficiently and not on one`s sexual orientation in the bedroom.

Budget Deficit

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Budget Deficit Explodes Higher In Portugal After Government Throws In Towel On Bad Bank Sale

Newly-upgraded Portugal unleashed a budget bombsell on Wednesday when it revised its 2014 deficit higher by some 60% after a failure to liquidate the predecessor to bailed out Banco Espirito Santo left taxpayers holding a €5 billion bag. 

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Can The Saudi Economy Resist "Much Lower For Much Longer"?

The Saudis must alter course, seek a consensus on prices and volumes with their fellow OPEC members, coordinate with Russia, and reduce output from 2015’s average (approx. 10.5 mmbbl/d) to signal their commitment. Why? Crude prices staying lower for longer will rapidly devastate the Saudi economy.

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Rousseff Coup Could Sink Brazil, Emerging Markets

Rousseff - hand-picked by Lula da Silva to succeed him - appears to be caught up in da Silva's backdraft. Opposition parties also claim she violated Brazil's fiscal responsibility law when she doctored government accounts to allow more public spending prior to the October election last year. Rousseff in turn described the attempt to use Brazil's economic crisis as an opportunity to seize power a modern day coup.

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Moody's Downgrades France, Blames "Political Constraints", Sees No Material Reduction In Debt Burden

Citing "continuing weakness in the medium-term growth outlook," Moody's has downgraded France:


Apearing to blame The EU's "institutional and political constraints," Moody's expects French growth to be at most 1.5% and does not expect the debt burden to be materially reduced this decade.

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Petrostate Cash Crunch Continues Amid Oil Collapse, Proxy Wars

The fallout from the demise of the petrodollar is becoming impossible to sweep under the rug even as Gulf states are keen to downplay the severity of the budget crunch. For the Saudis, who need crude at $100 to plug a budget deficit that’s projected at a whopping 20% of GDP, the situation is becoming particularly acute. For Qatar, the situation isn't quite as dire but that doesn't mean the country's officials aren't acutely aware that the world is now scrutinizing the budgets of petrostates in the wake of collapsing crude and indeed on Monday, Qatari Finance Minister Ali Sherif al-Emadi was at pains to reassure the market.

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Three Reasons Why Saudi Arabia Flip-Flopped On Iran. And Now Supports The US "Nuclear Deal"

To summarize: in order to get the Saudis to "agree" to the Iran deal, all the US had to do is remind King Salman, that as long as oil is where it is to a big extent as a result of Saudi's own record oil production, crushing countless US oil corporations and leading to the biggest layoffs in Texas since the financial crisis, the country will urgently need access to yield-starved US debt investors. If in the process, US corporations can invest in Saudi Arabia (and use the resulting assets as further collateral against which to take out even more debt), while US military corporations sell billions in weapons and ammo to the Saudi army, so much the better.

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Bull Or Bear?

The can is no longer rolling along. Instead, it has come to a near halt, with central bankers and government policymakers desperate to give it another boot. Watch out!

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Suddenly The Bank Of Japan Has An Unexpected Problem On Its Hands

By monetizing more than the entire Japanese budget deficit, the BOJ is running of out willing sellers. Without those, Japan's QE, just like that of the ECB, will grind to a halt. Better yet, this creates a vicious loop, because with every passing month, the inevitable D-Day when the BOJ has no more TSYs on the offer gets closer, which in turn will force those who bought stocks to sell in anticipation of the end of QE, and to seek the safety of bonds themsleves, in effect precipitating the next inevitable Japanese stock market crash.

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Here's How High Oil Prices Must Climb To Stop Saudi Arabia's Budget Bleed

Saudi Arabia is staring down a current account-fiscal account outcome that makes Brazil look favorable by comparison. With the fiscal budget deficit projected at some 20% of GDP and two proxy wars combined with the necessity of maintaining the status quo for ordinary Saudis serving to make fiscal retrenchment next to impossible, you might be wondering how high oil prices need to climb in order for the Saudis to plug the gap. Deutsche Bank has the answer.

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Saudi Arabia's Stock Market Just Logged Its Worst Month Since Lehman

"A cloudy fiscal policy along with unattractive economic data and oil prices continuing to decline fueled negative sentiment about the market which exaggerated fears among investors."

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Forget China - Oil Price Is Main Driver Of Market Turmoil

World oil production is about 90 million barrels a day, representing a cash flow of about nine billion dollars a day which comes down to three trillion dollars a year. With the oil price 40 to 50% lower, this flow is also cut by 40 to 50%. This amounts to 10% US GDP. Compare it with the 0.5% growth we are now missing in China, we prefer to keep our eyes on the oil price. These extreme moves can not be without consequence.

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Fischer Speaks At Jackson Hole: "Fed Should Not Wait Until 2% Inflation To Begin Tightening"

Today's most anticipated event at tthis year's Jackson Hole event was the panel on "Global Inflation Dynamics", not because there is any core inflation in the world (at least not in the way the CPI measures it), especially not now that China is finally in the deflation exporting business, but because the most important speaker at this year's Jackson Hole, Fed vice chairman Stanley Fischer, alongside BOE's Mark Carney, the ECB's Constancio and the RBI's Raguram Rajan, would comment. Moments ago he just did, and courtesy of Market News, here are the highlights.

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Here's How Long Saudi Arabia's US Treasury Stash Will Last Under $30, $40, And $50 Crude

Late last year, Saudi Arabia "Plaxico'd" itself and the petrodollar when, in an effort to "preserve market share" and bankrupt US shale producers, the kingdom endeavored to purposefully suppress crude prices. Nine months and billions in liquidated FX reserves later, Saudi Arabia is facing a budget crisis of epic proportions. 

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