The swell of anti-Russian propaganda, confrontation and attempted intimidation by NATO has increased, and if it continues to do so it is likely that Moscow will take action, thereby upping the stakes and the danger even more. It is time that NATO’s nations came to terms with the reality that Russia is a major international power with legitimate interests in its own region. Moscow is not going to bow the knee in the face of immature threats by sabre-rattling US generals and their swaggering acolytes. It is time for NATO to forge ties rather than destroy them — and to build bridges rather than glitzy office blocks.
The higher financial markets rise, the harder they fall. It would be one thing if stocks were soaring because the U.S. economy as a whole was doing extremely well. But we all know that isn’t true. The warning signs are there – if you are willing to look at them.
A dispassionate look at the drivers of the investment climate in the week ahead.
From little black dresses to big white pussies; Fashion designer and photographer Karl Lagerfeld claims his chic cat, named Choupette made $3.22 million last year from just two modeling gigs. Unbelievable, perhaps; but as the insanely wealthy Lagerfeld explains, "she is the center of the world. If you saw her, you would understand."
Germany has been kind enough to provide an idea where the foundering Greek "radical leftist" government can find some additional funds: by freezing and raiding the bank accounts of wealthy Greeks. Of course, the legal loophole provision is that only those suspected (not convicted) of tax fraud would be eligible for such an asset freeze, however since in Greece virtually nobody pays the amount of tax they should, this is essentially a carte blanche to freeze and raid the funds of the wealthiest Greeks who have bank accounts in Germany (and soon in all other European nations) no questions asked.
When discussing the Iran "deal" which isn't a deal, but merely a " Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action", there are two key things one must keep in mind: the location of Iran's nuclear facilities and its oil infrastructure. Here is a quick take on both.
At its core, currency manipulation is any intentional intervention that results in an undervalued currency and a substantial current-account surplus – exactly what the ECB is doing. If the ECB maintains this policy for an extended period, tension with the US is all but inevitable – tension that may obstruct the TTIP’s approval by the US Congress or hinder the treaty’s actual operation, resulting in its deterioration or termination. This runs counter to the popular view, which drove the eurozone’s creation, that Europe needs a single currency to compete with large economies like the US, China, and India.
In a move presaged by objections from politicians and some smaller EU financial institutions, the German lender L-Bank is suing the ECB in a bid to avoid falling under the central bank’s direct supervision. WSJ calls this "the most radical step by a European bank against ECB supervision [and] highlights the headwinds the ECB is facing from some politicians and smaller lenders in Germany, Europe’s biggest economy."
- Iranians celebrate, Obama hails 'historic' nuclear framework (Reuters)
- Iran Nuclear Accord Hailed as Landmark After Marathon Talks (BBG)
- Two New York City women accused of planning 'terrorist attack' (Reuters)
- Cyprus Lifts Capital Controls Two Years After Deposits Bail-In (BBG)
- Jury Hits Chrysler With $150 Million Penalty in Boy’s Death (WSJ)
- Greece says ready to make IMF payment on April 9 (Reuters)
- Germanwings Co-Pilot Set Plane to Go Faster Before Crash (BBG)
- IBM hire advisers to deal with restless investors - sources (Reuters)
Russia possesses tremendous opportunity for growth and with no lack of suitors – east or west – Putin is in no hurry to pander to the US or EU hardliners.
It appears Beijing isn’t opposed to throwing billions behind serving as a lender of last resort and we can’t help but wonder if the new round of Petrobras financing is indicative of where China will steer initial AIIB funding — that is, into oil and into Washington's backyard.
Unlike yesterday's vertigo-inducing overnight session, today has been a smooth sea by comparison even if one which has flowed from the top left to the bottom right for now, with futures erasing all of the last minute surge which was HFT programmed to sticksave the S&P just green for the year and then some. It is difficult to pinpoint the catalyst that will be today's market narrative although with NFP in just over 24 hours, falling on a holiday which will allow S&P futures just 45 minutes of trading after the BLS report hits before closing for the day, and with the weak ADP not to mention the 0.0% GDP, the "whisper" expectation is for a NFP print that will be well below consensus, somewhere in the mid-100,000s if not worse now that the bartender hiring spree is over. The fact that March payrolls have missed on 6 of the last 7 reports probably adds to the dollar weakness, even if a huge miss tomorrow may just be the catalyst Yellen needs to launch the QE4 trial balloon.
He must have accidently veered off script during the press conference.
It has been another whiplash, rollercoaster, illiquid session which saw US equity futures tumble early overnight driven by a bout of USDJPY and Nikkei selling, only to regain all losses as European, and BIS, traders walked in, and promptly BTFD. In fact at last check, it was as if all the fireworks that took place just a few short hours ago and sent the ES as low as 2037, and below what has become the key support level, the 50-DMA never happened.