I gave a 45-minute presentation on Yield Purchasing Power at American Institute for Economic Research in Great Barrington, MA on October 14, 2016. I am grateful to the Institute for recording video of my presentation plus extended Q&A.
Following Obama's 9/11 bill veto defeat yesterday, and despite a surge in oil prices after a 'deal' was struck by OPEC, Saudi Arabia's markets are signaling panic in The Kingdom. Currency forwards are collapsing, default risk is jumping, and bank stocks are hitting record lows...
Last week, the Federal Reserve decided to keep US interest rates unchanged, marking its 96th month of life at the zero bound. Apparently, for all of its "data dependence", the Fed feels the economy could still benefit from *just* a little more of its ZIRP happy juice. But as anyone with a little common sense will tell you,More is not always better. It's quite possible to have too much of a good thing. And in its pursuit to kick the can for a little longer, the Fed has crossed a dangerous line.
Despite its peg, Spot Riyal is trading at its weakest in 8 months as turmoil mounts in The Kingdom as a failed 'deal' in Algiers, pay cuts for royalty, and now growing concerns that the US vote/veto on 9/11 Legislation will delay Saudi Arabia's first international bond sale. Forward bets on Saudi currency devaluation are surging and default risk is on the rise again as Bloomberg reports, a Senate vote to override President Barack Obama’s veto could cause some investors to balk at the issue.
"Sometimes history jumps. Think of the first world war, the Bolshevik revolution, the Great Depression, the election of Adolf Hitler, the second world war,... We may be on the brink of an event as transformative as many of these: the election of Donald Trump as US president. This would mark the end of a US-led west as the central force in global affairs. The result would not be a new order. It would be perilous disorder."
Investors have piled into global developed market sovereign bonds as fears of Deutsche Bank collapse ripple through global markets. Interestingly, despite rising default risk concerns in Germany CDS, Bunds have been aggressively bid with negative yields now out to 15 years (and Finland NIRP to 10 years).
For most of 2016, Deutsche Bank shares had been sliding fast. On Monday, they crashed, down more than 7%, after Angela Merkel refused to consider a bailout for the troubled lender. The bank's bonds have slumped, while it default risk spiked. As some have correctly put it "it all has a very 2008 feel to it."
Are you ready for the most anticipated presidential debate in decades? There will likely be quite a few questions about the economy, and without a doubt this is an area where Trump and Clinton have some very sharp differences. The mainstream media would have us believe that the U.S. economy is in pretty good shape, and if that was true that would seem to favor Clinton. But is it actually true?
Amid what some might call self-inflicted economic collapse, Saudi Arablia has announced a $5.3 billion bailout of its banking system as interbank borrowing rates near the highest since Lehman. In what the supposedly central bank calls "supportive monetary policy...on behalf of government entities," is easing liquidity constraints with 28-day repo agreements and is the second liquidty injection this year.
"I don’t buy at all what’s coming out of Germany in terms of Germany not wanting to step in ultimately if Deutsche Bank was really in trouble" said Andreas Utermann, Allianz Global Investors’ chief investment officer. "Deutsche Bank is “too important for the German economy.”
Turkish assets plummeted the most since an attempted coup in July and credit risk climbed after Moody’s Investors Service cut the country’s sovereign rating to junk. The immediate response by the Turkish administration was to lash out at Moody's calling the decision "politically-motivated", after a similar downgrade by S&P led Erdogan to acuse the agency of siding with coup plotters.
As reported over the weekend, in an unexpected announcement Angela Merkel announced that she has ruled out state aid for Deutsche Bank, and the market reaction has been swift and brutal, with the bank's shares tumbling to a new all time low, sliding more than 6% this morning to €10.70, as the company's default risk has soared higher and is now the widest name in the Markit iTraxx index.