Portugal

Which Countries Will Be Tomorrow's Winners & Losers?

If geography and demographics have already defined which nations will be attractive to capital and most likely to accumulate productive capital in their domestic economy, and those nations that will struggle due to high costs and low rates of capital investment, in effect Nature (geography) and Culture (demographics) have already picked tomorrow’s winners and losers. As individuals, we may harbor strong biases about which nations we want to see falter and which ones we want to see prosper. But as investors, we must strip away our political opinions and biases lest they interfere with our primary job, which is to preserve whatever capital we’ve accumulated.

France Discusses Ban Of Imported U.S. Shale Gas

After French media accuses government of hypocrisy, French Energy Minister Segolene Royal is discussing with French parliament a potential ban on the import of U.S. shale gas.

US Futures, European Stocks Drop As USDJPY Tumbles

One day after the biggest jump in stocks in two months on what has still been an undetermined catalyst, overnight global equities did a U-turn with European stocks falling toward a one-month low and U.S. stock index futures declining, as crude oil dropped toward $44 a barrel. A driver the move lower was a sharp reversal in the USDJPY which dropped 100 pips from yesterday's highs which took places just as Goldman predicted the USDJPY has finally bottomed, facilitated by a weaker dollar (also following a Goldman report yesterday forecasting the USD was about to surge).

Jim Grant Asks When The World Will Realize "That Central Bankers Have Lost Their Marbles"

Does the deployment of helicopter money not entail some meaningful risk of the loss of confidence in a currency that is, after all, undefined, uncollateralized and infinitely replicable at exactly zero cost? Might trust be shattered by the visible act of infusing the government with invisible monetary pixels and by the subsequent exchange of those images for real goods and services? To us, it is the great question. Pondering it, as we say, we are bearish on the money of overextended governments. We are bullish on the alternatives enumerated in the Periodic table. It would be nice to know when the rest of the world will come around to the gold-friendly view that central bankers have lost their marbles. We have no such timetable. The road to confetti is long and winding.

Why Gazprom's 'Monopoly' In Europe Is Far From Over

The first U.S. shipment of liquefied natural gas (LNG) arrived in Portugal last week and Gazprom did not immediately cut its own gas prices for Europe. While European media has hailed the entry of U.S. gas into the market as a game-changer and a monopoly-breaker, in the short term, nothing has changed at all.

Frontrunning: May 4

  • Donald Trump’s Win Just Latest Tremor Shaking GOP (WSJ)
  • Trump Becomes Presumptive Republican Nominee as Cruz Exits Race (BBG)
  • How 'Stop Trump' failed to halt the Republican front-runner (Reuters)
  • Islamic State seeks news blackout in Mosul as Iraqi army nears (Reuters)
  • U.S. gathers allies on next steps in Islamic State fight (Reuters)

Futures, Crude Unchanged Ahead Of Draghi As Parabolic Move In Steel, Iron Ore Continues

One day after stocks were this close from hitting new all time highs on what have been either ok earnings, if looking at non-GAAP data, or atrocious earnings, based on GAAP, and where any oil headline is now immediately translated as bullish by the oil algos, so far futures are relatively flat, while European stocks were at their moments ago in anticipation of the latest ECB announcement due out in just one hour.  However, unlike last month's "quad-bazooka", this time the market expects far less from Draghi. “Having pulled put the monetary bazooka in March, the market is sensibly expecting no further policy measures from the ECB,”

"Sleepy" ECB Preview: What Every Bank Thinks Draghi Will Do Tomorrow

Tomorrow's ECB meeting "looks set to be sleepy" according to Saxo Bank's Mads Koefed as Draghi is largely cornered into confirmation he will do "whatever it takes" and some additional details on the corporate bond purchase plan. Most of the sell-side's research suggests the same, as Bloomberg notes, ECB will probably leave the door open for further cuts if needed; but any downside risk for the euro is seen limited, as Draghi stays on hold by reinforcing its dovish stance after the mix of easing measures announced in March with some defense of the efficiency of his policies after recent criticism by Germany.

$530 Billion Over Ten Years - How The End Of Border-less Travel Threatens Europe's Economy

In an effort to slow Syrian, Afghan, and Iraqi migrants traveling to Europe, many countries are now implementing border controls, a decision that could prove to have significant negative consequences for Europe's economy. As Bloomberg notes, the open border economy supports more than 400 million people, with 24 million business trips, and 57 million cross-border freight transfers happening every single year. Research by the Bertelsmann Foundation asserts that a permanent return to border controls could cost $530 billion of GDP growth from the European economy over the next decade.

George Soros Warns Europe: Absorb 500k Refugees Costing $34Bn, Or Risk "Existential Threat"

The asylum policy that emerged from last month’s EU-Turkey negotiations has four fundamental flaws, according to Billionaire puppet-master George Soros, which combined pose an "existential threat to Europe." His solution is 'simple' - Accept 500,000 refugees per year costing $34 billion year (via "surge" funding through more borrowing, and a newly-created refugee crisis fund from increased VAT on member states) or else, in his words, "the European Union is in mortal danger?"

Austria Just Announced A 54% Haircut Of Senior Creditors In First "Bail In" Under New European Rules

Following a decision by the Austrian Banking Regulator, the Finanzmarktaufsicht or Financial Market Authority, Austria officially became the first European country to use a new law under the framework imposed by Bank the European Recovery and Resolution Directive to share losses of a failed bank with senior creditors as it slashed the value of debt owed by Heta Asset Resolution AG.

Stocks To Reopen In The Green For 2016 After Crude, USDJPY Rebound

In the final day of the week, it has again been a story of currencies and commodities setting stock prices, however instead of yesterday's Yen surge which slammed the USDJPY as low as 107.67 and led to a global tumble in equities, and crude slide, today has been a mirror imoage after a modest FX short squeeze, which sent the Yen pair as high as 109.1, before easing back to the 108.80 range. This, coupled with a 3.5% bounce in WTI, which is back up to $38.54 and up 4.9% on the week as speculation has returned that Russia and OPEC members can reach a production freeze deal on April 17, led to a global stock rebound which will see the S&P open back in the green for 2016.