Just when one thinks news can't get any more... what's the right word here... here it comes. Per Reuters, Japan has decided to justify the credibility of its nukes, by, get this, performing stress tests. "Japan's trade minister Banri Kaieda said the government would conduct stress tests on all nuclear power reactors in Japan, Jiji news agency reported on Wednesday. The minister also said he would ensure there were no problems with power supplies, Jiji reported." Where does one start here: that the ECB is not the one conducting the tests - after all who has more expertise with stress tests... Or that the tests come after the biggest nuclear catastrophe since Chernobyl: after all what's the downside - one more Fukushima and Japan would convert into the Prypiat level from Call of Duty... Or that the tests will just accidentally forget to test for such 60 sigma events as earthquakes or tsunamis... Or that the announcement comes a day after the Japanese reconstruction minister quit after a week on the job... Or that the ECB will announce it will accept Japan's nukes as collateral until at least 10 major networks show footage of a mushroom cloud.... Or that ISDA will shortly determine that another nuclear explosion is not really a nuclear explosion and that all CDS against nuclear explosions will be null and void as soon as there is an actual explosion... Or that Tim Geithner is currently in Tokyo explaining there is nothing more credible than a stress tested nuke... Or that Basel VIIIXLC will find a NPP safe if its ratio of gamma to alpha radiation is more than 1 megaroentgen, promptly followed by Jamie Dimon bitching to BOJ president Shirakawa that 1 megaroentgen is too much to demand from Fukushima Street.... And it continues. Etc. Etc. Etc.
"I think that the prices will continue higher. I mean the amount of money printing is unbelievable. I just think you have to take that initial stand in terms of buying it. I use the James Turk analogy: just keep dollar averaging. We have gone up eleven years in a row, this year it looks like it will be no exception; I would certainly think next year will be no exception. If we ever have QE3 announced, I think gold and silver will just go absolutely bonkers here. And so I just think you have got to step in there and own it; we’ve had these fears all the way along. You know, $400, and $500 and $700 and $800 dollar gold, everyone was afraid it was a one-time thing. I don’t think it is a one-time thing, I think it is a secular thing. It’s going to carry on for quite a while here until we find some resolution of these problems. And the resolution probably will be some form of default where people just have to expunge debts that cannot be repaid. So, you have got to be in some asset which will not be affected by that." So predicts Eric Sprott, founder of Sprott Asset Management and famed investor. In this wide-ranging interview, he shares his insights on the precious metals markets - specifically what investors need to be aware of in terms of the way the markets are currently managed (manipulated), the macro outlook for the economy (grim) and the true value of gold and silver (very underpriced; particularly silver).
"General Motors Co. stocked Jim Ellis Chevrolet in Atlanta with plenty of Silverado full-size pickups in early 2011, part of a wager on a strong economic recovery. The strategy is backfiring. “We thought that this year would bring back the kind of economic activity that would translate into us selling more trucks,” Mark Frost, the dealership’s general manager, said in a phone interview. “It’s not happening.” Supply of Silverado has ballooned to 6 1/2 months worth at the dealership, a figure Frost, 52, calls “a little scary.” The Detroit-based automaker, 33 percent owned by the U.S. after its 2009 bankruptcy, has 280,000 Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups on dealers’ lots around the country. If sales continue at June’s rate, that would be enough to last until November." Thus begins a story just published by Business Week covering a topic that Zero Hedge has been pounding the table on since last December, and which just hit an all time record for fresh start Government Motors a few days ago - namely the firm's propensity to dump as much inventory as possible on dealer floors. Granted, many have been quick to mock, ridicule and ignore our glaringly obvious findings (especially since these come at a time when the light vehicle sales SAAR is back to a 10 month low, and likely to plunge once the long overdue inventory liquidation finally takes place), although now that the topic of General Motors' "strategy" of overfilling dealer inventory is front page news, it finally may get the overdue respect it deserves, especially since as Jefferies' Peter Nesvold cautions, this is nothing more than new GM reverting to the habits of the old one (the one that filed and needed taxpayer bailouts for a few hundred thousand union workers).
Certainly, if we compare the fiscal trajectory of the Eurozone as a whole with the US, the US is not really on a better path.
Here is the real danger with the debt ceiling deal...
Markets witnessed risk-averse sentiment in early European trade partly on the back of comments from Moody's that China's local government debt may be USD 540bln larger than auditors estimated, which could endanger Chinese banks' credit ratings. Lower than expected services PMI data from China, and core Eurozone countries dented risk-appetite further, which in turn resulted in weakness in EUR and equities. However, as the session progressed equities gradually came off their earlier lows, and the oil & gas sector received some support after the UK Treasury announced tax support for North Sea oil companies. Elsewhere, GBP/USD gained strength following better than expected services PMI data from the UK. Moving forward, the economic calendar remains thin, however markets look ahead to economic data from the US in the form of durable goods revision and factory orders figures.
The best thing to ever come out of RBS is back in its original format, now that Bob Janjuah has decided to begin releasing Bob's World again, if not with the unique trademarked grammatical style. That alone must be worth 95% of the intangible, and thus all, assets on RBS' balance sheet. To those who read just the first few paragraphs and are left scratching their heads if Bob was lobotomized in recent weeks and now sees nothing but upside, so contrary to his usual cheery disposition, we suggest reading on - that is merely his outlook for the short-term. The long one: "my view beyond July/August is bearish and very much risk-off. In late Q3/Q4 2011 I expect to see the beginnings of a meaningful sell-off in global risk which should take the S&P below 1220 and on its way possibly to the low 1000s. In this risk-off move I would expect – initially at least – USD to rally sharply, with the DXY index closer to 80 than 75, and major DM government yield curves to bull flatten, with 10-year UST yields falling to around 2.5%. Credit spreads should widen, but I expect non-financial corporate credit to outperform in relative terms. Having said that, in this major risk-off phase I still expect the iTraxx Crossover index to rise well above 500. And commodity weakness should be a major part of this late-2011 serious risk-off phase." Ah yes. Good old Bob.
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"Look for a huge shock when they announce just how much more debt the gummit will need to sell compared to what was originally estimated"
Goodbye Rare Earth Minerals, Hello Not So Rare Underwater Minerals: Vast ___ Oxide Deposit Discovered In Pacific SeabedSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/03/2011 20:49 -0500
Two weeks ago we demonstrated what happens to prices of so-called "rare" earth minerals, which are almost exclusively controlled by China, and whose exports China recently decided to cut to a mere trickle, resulting in a 10+ fold increase in some of the most rare minerals in under a month. It also has allowed the third R bubble to persist as long as it has. It appears that the bubble is about to pop big time. According to Nikkei, "Vast deposits of rare earth minerals have been discovered on the seabed of the Pacific Ocean amounting to 1,000 times those on land, media reported on Monday citing a study by Japanese researchers." Of course, this could merely be one of those not quite definitive discoveries, which end up being disproven eventually, but which serve to merely pop a temporary speculative bubble. Just like the IEA. In the meantime, it may be time to temporarily erase the Rare from Rare Earth Minerals, and change Earth to Underwater.
The CPC (Communist Party of China) was founded on July 1, 1921 in Shanghai with a large working class support base. Throughout the past 60 years or so, China has never deviate much from socialism. With rapid growth, cracks are starting to surface.
Goldman's David Kostin, who last week was warning about the combustible effects of a hedge and mutual fund space underperforming the general market, has again found his bearings after a week which saw the biggest move in the market in two years, primarily courtesy of an unprecedented and very much delayed shift out of bonds and into any other asset, marking the end of QE2 and substantial uncertainty as to who will buy government issuance in the future. However, the future is a topic for another day. Here is a brief recap of the past: "S&P 500 ended 2Q almost unchanged from the start of April, but has returned 6% YTD. Looking back, Health Care was the major surprise, surging 14% YTD followed by Energy at 11%. Financials was the only sector to post a negative return, falling 3%. Largecaps lagged with S&P 100 returning 5% and Russell 2000 advancing 6%. Looking ahead, macro uncertainty abounds in Europe (sovereign debt), Japan (earthquake recovery), China (inflation pressures), and US (debt ceiling and budget negotiations). However, at the micro level we expect S&P 500 EPS will establish a new high of $96 and lift the index to 1450, a return of 10% in 2H."
The week's most concise summary of key bullish and bearish events.
ISM Manufacturing Report Jumps To 55.3, Beats Expectations OF 53.5 As Reverse Decoupling Thesis Is Now In PlaySubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/01/2011 09:03 -0500
Just like earlier in the year, the global recovery is once again on the shoulders of the US. Manufacturing ISM just printed at 55.3, a major beat to expectations of 51.3, and up from 53.5 before. How this meshes with PMI data that is contracting across the globe is irrelevant: just BTFD as America is once again expected to push the world out of the "soft spot" although this time with no QE or fiscal stimulus. Among the various indices, employment mysteriously increased from 58.2 to 59.9 despite consistently weak initial claims and NFP numbers missing expectations, New Orders increased from 51.0 to 51.6 despite a collapse in comparable metrics in recent regional Fed surveys, and prices paid dropped from 76.5 to 68.0, despite ongoing inflationary pressures.
- Strauss-Kahn Case Seen as in Jeopardy (NYT)... yes, the soap opera is back.... although don't expect Lagarde to hand the keys back to DSK - after all the mission has been accomplished. Though president DSK would be a shoo in if cleared of all charges.
- China Salutes 90 Years of Communism (WSJ)... US salutes nearly 100 year of Federal Reserve central planning
- Obama Pushes for a Deficit Deal by July 22 (FT)
- China manufacturing at lowest in 2 years (FT)
- German Banks Agree to Greek Aid Deal (WSJ)
- Ex-Goldman director Gupta SEC Case Postponed Indefinitely (Fin Alternatives)
- Greek, Italian Bonds Lead Peripheral Rebound as Default Concern Ebbs (Bloomberg)
- Republicans boycott trade vote (FT)
- Obama Pushes for a Deficit Deal by July 22 (FT)