More basic suggestions for those who are seeking shelter from the coming storms of global financial crisis and recession (part 1 here).
While most news coming out of Ukraine regarding the ongoing civil war are merely propaganda designed to make Russia look bad, and hence irrelevant (and vice versa from Russia of course - the only news that matters re: Ukraine is i) what happens with gas deliveries to Europe via Ukraine and ii) the fate of the South Stream pipeline; the rest is mostly noise), it is perhaps a testament to how the global media will observe Russia's response to the latest US sanctions, and hardly improve risk appetite, that as Reuters reports a Russian jet shot down a Ukrainian SU-25 fighter plane that was on military operations over the east of Ukraine.
The sell off was greeted by Chinese buyers as Chinese premiums edged up to just over $1 an ounce on the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE).
Gold price drops this year have led to a marked increase in demand for gold as seen in very large increases in ETF holdings (See chart - Orange is Gold, Purple is absolute change in gold ETF holdings). The smart money in Asia, the West and globally continues to use price dips as an opportunity to allocate to gold.
One of today’s most common economic fallacies is that the soaring stock market is evidence of economic recovery. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Fed’s balance sheet has grown more than fourfold since 2008 — to $4.3 trillion — and was used to prop up the “too big to fails.” That money had to go somewhere. Paper money promotes the “quick buck” syndrome like narcotics peddling and hookers on the streets. In a paper money society, the social order visibly deteriorates. Fiat promotes an illusory reality where non-substance like financial speculation and gambling replaces the substance of industrial production and long-term value.
It has been a mixed overnight session, following data out of China first showing that any hopes of ongoing PBOC tapering are dead and buried, following the June report showing money and loan creation (1.08 trillion Yuan up from 871 billion in May and above the 980 billion expected) in China soared, slamming expectations and indicating that Beijing is once again set on masking slowing growth with a surge in money creation. Should the Chinese not so secret any more money laundering channel be plugged this means local inflation may be set to surge in the coming months. More worrying was the release of a big drop in the German ZEW Survey expectations print at 27.1, down from 29.8 and below the expected 28.2. The low print has prompted several banks to warn that Europe's growth spurt has finally ended and there may be substantial downside surprises ahead, and certainly even more cuts to the IMF "forecast" for European growth. Finally, the Portuguese situation may be out of sight, but it is certainly not out of mind as the stock of BES continues to tumble and now the contagion has finally moved over to Espirito Santo Financial Group whose shares dropped to the lowest since 1993. Keep a close eye on this "not so lonely" cockroach.
Russia Furious With UK Air Show Visa Refusal, Vows Reponse Before Ukraine Plane Allegedly Shot Down By RussiaSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/14/2014 10:26 -0400
Clashes between Ukraine’s government forces and pro-Russia rebels in the east of the country have intensified since President Petro Poroshenko called off a cease-fire July 1. Putin and Merkel met as Russia warned of “irreversible consequences” after the Foreign Ministry said a Ukrainian army shell killed one person in the southern region of Rostov. Ukraine said its military didn’t fire on Russian territory and is ready to help investigate the incident. “Both leaders agreed that, unfortunately, the situation in Ukraine is degrading,” Peskov told reporters after Putin and Merkel met. The Russian leader expressed his “extreme concern” about Ukraine’s continuing offensive operations and today’s “tragedy,” Peskov said. Market shrugs.
Now that the World Cup is over, and following last week's global macro reporting slumber (aside for the Portuguese risk flaring episode of course), things pick up quite a bit in the coming week. Here are the key events.
- Secret Path Revealed for Chinese Billions Overseas (BBG)
- Traders Flood U.S. With $3.4 Trillion of Bond-Auction Demand (BBG)
- Just in time to cover bad earnings in a massive $3.8 billion "one-time charge": Citi says to pay $7 billion to settle securities investigation (Reuters)
- Troubled Epirito Santo family loosens grip on Portugal's BES (Reuters)
- BES puts in place new executives after central bank push (Reuters)
- Bank of China-CCTV drama may reveal power struggle in Beijing (SCMP)
- Portugal speeds up Banco Espírito Santo management changes (FT)
- Dark pool probe builds pressure on Barclays boss (Reuters)
- Russia Vows to Respond After Shelling From Ukraine (BBG)
- Ukraine forces end rebel airport blockade (Reuters)
- Obama Contends With Arc of Instability Unseen Since '70s (WSJ)
Another round of overnight risk on exuberance helped Europe forget all about last week's Banco Espirito Santo worries, which earlier today announced a new CEO and executive team, concurrently with the announcement by the Espirito Santo family of a sale of 4.99% of the company to an unknown party, withe the proceeds used to repay a margin loan, issued during the bank's capital increase in May. This initially sent the stock of BES surging only to see it tumble promptly thereafter even despite the continuation of a short selling bank in BES shares this morning. Far more impotantly to macro risk, it was that 2013 staple, the European open surge in the USDJPY that has reset risk levels higher, while pushing gold lower by over 1% following the usual dump through the entire bid stack in overnight low volume trading. Clearly nothing has been fixed in Portugal, although at least for now, the investing community appears to have convinced itself that the slow motion wreck of Portugal's largest bank even after on Sunday, Portugal’s prime minister said taxpayers would not be called on to bail out failing banks, making clear there would be no state support for BES.
With the nation teetering on the brink of default amid major inflation pressures at home and growing poverty (and Kirchner facing pressure into next year's election), today's loss in the FIFA World Cup final appears to have lit the blue touch paper. As RT reports, police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse angry fans in Buenos Aires. Following the mass gathering around the Obelisk during the game, fans clashed with riot police as the loss sunk in. There are no reports of civilian injuries but 8 police were hurt. Rio has also seen violence between Argentina fans and others (and Brazil's Rousseff has issued a calming statement).
After Germany's thrashing of the host nation in the semi-final, today's final World Cup game was largely a formality and even Goldman predicted a German victory. Sure enough, following some preliminary planning Germany's Mario Götze's kicked the winning goal in overtime Leading to much happiness for the target of endless NSA and CIA spying.
A first class, all expenses paid weekend trip to Vienna with full diplomatic and press cover, to explain to Germany why every day a new CIA spy is uncovered, and to again reach no resolution on Iran's nuclear program: millions of dollars. Relaxing at the end of a long, hard day for a job well done with a cold central European beer: priceless. Some things money can't buy. For everything else there's TaxpayerCard.
1/2 BREAKING: IDF forces raided a site used to fire long-range rockets at Israel. The mission was accomplished
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) July 13, 2014
On the heels of John Kerry's accusation that Russia's behavior does not belong in the 21st century, Germany's Angela Merkel has come out swining against the escalating spying scandal with the US (which saw allegations that the US had recruited two Germans to sell secrets this week). During an interview with ZDF, the German leader blasted “that we have different perceptions on the work of intelligence services," adding that "we don’t live in the Cold War anymore." The White House's response, so far, a shrug of 'business-as-usual' from Josh Earnest; which fits with Merkel's conclusion: "I think it's not that easy to convince the Americans ... to completely change the way their intelligence services work."