As BOJ Holdings Surpass ¥100 Trillion, It Gets An Ultimatum: "Stop Being Independent Or Lose Your Independence"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 12/23/2012 12:22 -0500
2013, which is still a week away, is already off to a 'crazy pills' bang. Because while the bulk of the politipunditry is shocked, shocked, that it was dead wrong about the Cliff outcome which is now set to ram the country front and center on January 1, the most amusement appears to be emanating from the land of the rising sun, where the brand new PM just issued an ultimatum to the central bank, which can be summarized as follows: stop being independent, or we will change the laws and take away your independence.
Presenting Dave Collum's now ubiquitous and all-encompassing annual review of markets and much, much more. From Baptists, Bankers, and Bootleggers to Capitalism, Corporate Debt, Government Corruption, and the Constitution, Dave provides a one-stop-shop summary of everything relevant this year (and how it will affect next year and beyond).
Maybe the Mayans had it right all along…..
The Leuthold Group constructs their Risk Aversion Index (RAI) with a combination of market based indicators, including credit and swap spreads, implied vol, currency moves, and commodity prices. No doubt quantitative easing is repressing market fear. They also note that periods of low risk aversion tend to run longer than streaks of elevated risk aversion. How long this time? We don’t know but we’re going to think long and hard over the holiday about the potential macro swans in 2013. Here are eight starting thoughts we will be contemplating...
It may not be apparent immediately, but in the aftermath of last night's epic collapse in fiscal cliff negotiations, which incidentally was perfectly obvious to anyone with half a brain and who experienced last summer's debt ceiling fiasco, which sadly excludes all paid political and financial - including sellside - commentators, all of whom expected a prompt resolution to this polarized issue as recently as a week ago, there is major behind the scenes panic. Because while banks would write profuse, long-winded essays to explain the logic and rationality of the "deal", now that they are all faced with adjusting their narrative the best they can come up with are two sentence fragments such as this one from Citi's Steven Englander "Problem is that it is the right wing of the Republican Party that wouldn’t give Boehner their support, making it less likely that he could win broad support among Republicans for a compromise with the White House. Also he will have to spend next couple of days negotiating with both his own party and the Democrats without knowing how much he can deliver." The answer: nothing at all. In fact as Scott Rigell said “I’m not sure the people who have been up here 20 or 30 years really understand what the next iteration of this process is”. He is speaking for pretty much everyone else who has now been made a total fool by the Black Swan that is Congress. As a reminder a 3 month delay resolution assures a US recession, and a ~20% or so minimum correction in the stock market, which has been priced for absolute perfection for months, and which will once again have to be used by Wall Street as a means to get a consensus out of DC. Just as we predicted over a month ago. Finally while we may have avoided the Mayan apocalypse, we do have a quad witching and a NASDAQ rebalance to look forward to. Enjoy!
It had seemed that many participants were looking past the US fiscal cliff and were to be content taking on more risk. However, yesterday's late developments have provided a cold slap of reality. Our base scenario, under which the US does in fact go over the cliff appears more likely now that Speak Boehner's "Plan B" failed to draw sufficient Republican support to allow a vote. Indeed, there is some speculation that the failure of Boehner's gambit may see a leadership challenge right after the New Year.
The lack of a coherent Republican strategy has prompted a large unwind of risk-on and thin holiday market conditions may be exacerbating the price action. In the risk-off mode, the US dollar and yen have performed best. The dollar-bloc, which has generally lagged in recent days, remains under pressure.
Manufacturing industries have helped drive economic growth and rising living standards for nearly three centuries, and for some developing economies (as McKinsey notes in a recent report) continues to do so. Things are changing, however, as manufacturing output (as measured by gross value added) grew by 2.7% annually in advanced economies and 7.4% in large developing economies (from 2000 up until 2007); the leaders are changing rapidly China, India and Russia rise and Germany, Japan, UK, and Canada are sliding. The following chart simplifies the evolution of global manufacturing economies over the last four decades.
Gold’s recent move down is tracking our forecast.We saw an initial shock to gold as the pressure of higher rates moved through the system. What is perhaps lost on most market observers is the slowing pace of global liquidity flowing into the system. You could call the current situation a problem of velocity synchronicity.
Confirming what we all know, here is Bloomberg's "most improved for 2012" (in our humble opinion) commentator, Michael McDonough, on China: "Fiscal stimulus has bought China’s new leadership time to pass critical reforms to spur domestic consumption and rebalance the economy, though there is little room for error. Central banks from U.S. to Japan, through unprecedented levels of quantitative easing, are influencing global markets more than ever. Concerns have arisen over China’s manufacturing sector losing competitiveness; companies including Apple and General Electric have moved some manufacturing lines back to the U.S." The Bloomberg Brief note continues: "Growth in China, which is currently being supported by government fiscal stimulus targeting infrastructure investment, will probably remain between 7.5 and 8 percent. This will buy time for the new leadership to continue with reforms, including interest-rate liberalization, designed to help stoke final demand in China and properly rebalance the nation’s economy."
We believe that because the Rockefellers and Rothschilds created our “modern” banking system with the express diabolical intent of transferring the wealth of nations to themselves with zero work and of preventing the people of these nations from revolting through the imposition of debt enslavement achieved through the administration of the fractional reserve banking system, it is impossible to be a moral person and work for a bank.
An abysmal indicator for Europe
Last year's AmeriCatalyst interview with Kyle Bass provided much more color than the normal 30-second soundbites that we are subjected to when serious hedge fund managers are exposed to mainstream media. This year, Bass was the keynote speaker and in the following speech (followed by Q&A), the fund manager provides 60 minutes of eloquence on the end of the grand experiment and its consequences. From Money Printing and Central Bank Balance sheets to Japan and the psychology of the current situation - which in many cases trumps the quantitative data - the question remains, "when will this unravel" as opposed to "if?"; Bass provides his fact-based heresy against the orthodoxy of economic thought "On The Financial Nature Of Things" extending well beyond his recent note. Must watch (there's no football or X-Factor on tonight).Make sure to stay tuned to the last 2 minutes when Kyle succinctly sums up our society...
Worldwide, more than eight-in-ten people identify with a religious group. A comprehensive demographic study of more than 230 countries and territories conducted by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life estimates that there are 5.8 billion religiously affiliated adults and children around the globe, representing 84% of the 2010 world population of 6.9 billion. These five charts sum up the age, size, geography, and power of the world's major religions.
The markets, as most people reading this should now well know, no longer reflect in any way the true economic health of our country. If one was to measure the financial “recovery” of this nation by the strength of global stocks alone, he would probably come to the conclusion that the collapse of 2008 was a mere hiccup in the overall success of the worldwide economic system. However, electronically traded equities with little more to back their value than scraps of receipt paper and numbers on a screen have no bearing on what is going to happen to you, and to me, over the course of the coming year. The stock market is a sideshow, a popcorn movie, a façade. The real drama is going on behind the scenes and revealed in fundamentals that mainstream analysts no longer discuss...
Would be easy to call this boring, given the state of the market and volumes, but undercover Risk On definitively there. Greek 10s over the moon and far away (up 500 ticks)… Strong EUR. Seems a little easy, but who wants to fight? It’s Yule Time – at least until Friday, then we’ll see what the Mayans really meant.
"Oh Come All Ye Faithful" (Bunds 1,42% +0; Spain 5,25% -4; Stoxx 2658 +0,4%; EUR 1,326 +40)