Speaking of the need for citizen participation in our national politics in his final State of the Union address, President Obama said, “Our brand of democracy is hard.” A more accurate characterization might have been: “Our brand of democracy is cold hard cash.” Cash, mountains of it, is increasingly the necessary tool for presidential candidates. Several Powerball jackpots could already be fueled from the billions of dollars in contributions in play in election 2016. When considering the present donation season, however, the devil lies in the details, which is why the details follow.
Following the yellow brick road leads us deep, very deep inside the rabbit hole...
“The SAC study includes chilling details. According to its authors, their target priorities and nuclear bombing tactics would expose nearby civilians and 'friendly forces and people' to high levels of deadly radioactive fallout. Moreover, the authors developed a plan for the 'systematic destruction' of Soviet bloc urban-industrial targets that specifically and explicitly targeted “population” in all cities, including Beijing, Moscow, Leningrad, East Berlin, and Warsaw.”
- Battered oil wins respite, lifts stocks (Reuters)
- Oil Halts Decline as Emerging Market Stocks Climb on China (BBG)
- Bonds Set to Beat Stocks Globally in 2015 After China Falters (BBG)
- SpaceX Falcon rocket nails safe landing in pivotal space feat (Reuters)
- China Leaders Flag More Stimulus After Top Economic Meeting (BBG)
- SEC to Retrench Case Against SAC’s Steven A. Cohen (WSJ)
El-Erian Says "The Market Believes Central Banks Are Our Best Friends Forever", Just Don't Show It "Figure 4"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 11/21/2015 16:38 -0500
Liquidity in the junk (and all other markets) is evaporating, and according to Citi the spread between an illiquid and liquid junk bond portfolio just hit 100 bps, the most in the history of the series. Meanwhile according to Mohamed El-Erian "The market is comfortable that whenever we hit a hiccup, the Fed is going to come back in," he said. "It's very deeply embedded that central banks are our best friends forever."
As FT reports, "some of the European Central Bank’s top decision-makers met banks and asset managers days before major policy decisions, and on one occasion just hours before, copies of their diaries reveal."
US Ground Troops In Syria Is "Illegal, Big Mistake", Russia Warns Obama Of "Unpredictable Consequences"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 10/28/2015 21:30 -0500
Confirming once again that the U.S. has full devolved into banana republic, moments ago CNN reported that the US Department of "Justice" is closing its two-year investigation into whether the IRS improperly targeted tea party and other conservative groups. There will be no charges against former IRS official Lois Lerner or anyone else at the agency, the Justice Department said in a letter.
- China's central bank cuts rates for sixth time since November (Reuters)
- Global stocks hit two-month high on dovish Draghi message (Reuters)
- $6.5 Billion in Energy Writedowns and We're Just Getting Started (BBG)
- Alphabet, formerly Google, sets share buyback, shares jump (Reuters)
- Hurricane Patricia, Stronger Than Katrina, Nears Mexico (BBG)
- TVA Cleared to Start First New U.S. Nuclear Power Plant in Nearly 20 Years (WSJ)
Perhaps it is because the world has grown habituated to its unique set of "liquidity" problems, but California's record, and ongoing, drought has not been receiving much media coverage in the rest of the country in recent weeks. Perhaps it should be, because according to a report by CBS Sacramento, the Mountain Meadows reservoir also known as Walker Lake, a popular fishing hole just west of Susanville, ran dry literally overnight, killing thousands of fish and leaving residents looking for answers.
"The market closed above last Monday's high, which was a gap downside. And it also closed above the prior Friday's close. And that led to exhaustion. We should see the market drift lower for the next month or so. And we could probably make a new low, the low of last week's low, before the market finally bottoms."
With China's equity bubble now squarely in the rearview and the stock market crash making headlines the world over, Beijing is out for blood in a desperate attempt to find a scapegoat for a market rout that has rattled the country to the core. In what is perhaps a worrying sign of things to come, overnight China arrested a journalist and a top investment banker for "spreading fake trading information" and "illegal trading", respectively.
Once upon a time, Ron Insana tried running a fund of funds. He failed. Then he tried working at SAC. That didn't work out either. Then, he decided to write scathing opeds in the Huffpo bashing "doomsayers." Four years later, the Fed is terrified to hike rates by 25 bps from zero while in the meantime all other central banks have joined the Fed in a global, liquidity-injecting tsunami, confirming the doomsayers were right all along. So what is ole Ron, who once upon a time used to work at CNBC up to these days? Why "managing a virtual portfolio" it would appear... which he "took to cash last Thursday."
Today, with just one day to go until Bharara deadline runs out to plead the SCOTUS to opine on redefining what "insider trading" means , we found out why Bharara had requested the extension: as Reuters reports, the U.S. Justice Department asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to reverse a federal appellate court's ruling that authorities said limited their ability to pursue insider trading cases.
For the first time in 4 years, Appaloosa Management's David Tepper is not the highest-earning hedge fund manager in the world. Plunging from No.1 to tied-for-11th (with a mere $400 million earned last year) Tepper appears to have suddenly found investing difficult now that The Fed has stopped printing money (up just 2.2%). What is more ironic, perhaps, is that the other alleged beneficiary of Fed largesse (and recent hirer or blogger Ben Bernanke) - Citadel tops the list with Ken Griffin making $1.3 billion last year.