Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said that his country will retaliate in the "harshest ways" to Dutch moves to bar the flight of the Turkish foreign minister and prevent the family minister from entering the Turkish consulate in Rotterdam, while Dutch PM Mark Rutte slammed Erdogan: "This is a man who yesterday made us out for fascists and a country of Nazis. I’m going to de-escalate, but not by offering apologies. Are you nuts?" he told a morning talk show.
The European Parliament has introduced a new procedural rule, which allows for the chair of a debate to interrupt the live broadcasting of a speaking MEP "in the case of defamatory, racist or xenophobic language or behavior by a Member". No one, however, has bothered to define what constitutes "defamatory, racist or xenophobic language or behavior". Where does this clearly totalitarian impulse stop and who will stop it?
Hundreds of demonstrators waving Turkish flags gathered outside the Turkish consulate in the Dutch city of Rotterdam on Saturday night, demanding to see the Turkish minister for family affairs as a diplomatic scandal between the two countries escalated.
"Listen Netherlands, you'll jump once, you'll jump twice, but my people will thwart your game. You can cancel our foreign minister's flight as much as you want, but let's see how your flights come to Turkey now. They don't know diplomacy or politics. They are Nazi remnants. They are fascists." - Tayyip Erdogan
"A civil war has broken out within the White House over trade, leading to what one official called "a fiery meeting" in the Oval Office pitting economic nationalists close to Donald Trump against pro-trade moderates from Wall Street."
In a second salvo against the strong dollar on the same day, Bloomberg reports that during his first appearance at next week's G-20 meeting in Baden-Baden, Germany, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin plans to drive home the message that the U.S. won’t tolerate countries that engage in currency devaluation to gain an edge in trade.
European and Asian shares rise along with a jump in S&P futures which are pointing to a solidly green open on US payrolls day. The dollar, trading somewhat weaker against the euro was stronger against the yen, and was on track for its firth week of gains, while the rout in global Treasuries continued following a Mario Draghi conference that was interpreted as more hawkish than expected.
"if China seeks to be a great power in a multipolar world... then China needs to seek a significantly reduced role of the United States in the region. If you accept these propositions, then China clearly needs the capability to counterbalance America’s military dominance in Asia today. After the 1995-1996 Taiwan Strait crises, they concluded that they needed certain capabilities to ensure that they are not humiliated again."
South Korea's constitutional court has voted unanimously, 8-0, to uphold the impeachment of President Park Guen-hye, removing her from office after a 92-day leadership crisis and triggering a presidential election in the weeks to come. A snap election my be held within 60 days.
While trader attention will soon be focused on the ECB and any potential tightening hints from the central bank, a more pressing development as US traders walk in today, will be ongoing collapse in WTI, which after crashing 5.5% yesterday, has tumbled more than 2% this morning, sliding not only below $50 for the first time since December 1, but also dropped under $49, as a near record number of net long spec positions suddenly rushes to unwind their exposure.
"If you thought 2016 was weird, I suggest you get comfortable with the surreal because it is not going away anytime soon. 2017 is a veritable treasure trove of falling elevators... it seems to me that many of these events, stacked so closely together in the next few weeks, are not coincidental in their timing."