Starwood

Big Names Are Bailing

The list of heavy hitters who are saying bad things about this world and its financial markets - while acting aggressively on their pessimism - is growing to alarming proportions.

"We Are Unsure Whether To Wear A Helmet Or A Diaper" - Merger Arb Funds Crushed

While company officers - who have given up on major stock upside as a result of busted M&A - and investment bankers are lamenting the bursting of the M&A bubble, some of the biggest losers are on the buyside, where merger arbs have seen billions in paper profits turn into billions in paper losses in moments upon the announcement of deal termination. Indeed, broken deals have whipsawed hedge funds that focus on merger arbitrage. As the NYT poetically puts it, according to one "arb" the current mood of the industry: "Every day is like showing up unsure of whether to wear a helmet or a diaper."

Is Beijing About To Put An Abrupt End To Cross-Border M&A?

Massive capital outflows from China in an effort to preserve capital is something that we've covered extensively in the past (here and here for example). Last month, China's Ministry of Commerce (MOC) came out to do some damage control, and downplayed the extent of the activity. It also hinted that the government would "help" Chinese companies with overseas M&A in the future...

Global Stocks Plunge After Bank Of Japan "Shock"

Less than one week after the BOJ floated a trial balloon using Bloomberg, that it would reduce the rate it charged some banks which set off the biggest USDJPY rally since October 2014, we are back where we started following last night's "completely unexpected" (for everyone else: we wrote "What If The BOJ Disappoints Tonight: How To Trade It" hours before said "shock") shocking announcement out of the BOJ which did absolutely... nothing. "It’s a total shock,” Nader Naeimi, Sydney- based head of dynamic markets at AMP Capital Investors told Bloomberg. "From currencies to equities to everything -- you can see the reaction in the markets. I can’t believe this. It’s very disappointing."

Frontrunning: April 4

  • Ties between Germany and Russia enter new chill (Reuters)
  • Tax authorities begin probes into some people named in Panama Papers leak (Reuters)
  • SEC investigates ex-JPMorgan debt traders (FT)
  • Who Will Win Wisconsin? Here Are Six Credible Predictions (BBG)
  • Victim in Wall St. Scheme Was a Classmate of Its Accused Architect (NYT)

Frontrunning: April 1

  • Saudi Arabia Will Only Freeze Oil Production If Iran Joins (BBG)
  • Japanese gloom ensures slow start to quarter for world stocks (Reuters)
  • Saudi Arabia Plans $2 Trillion Megafund for Post-Oil Era (BBG)
  • Prices Sag in Warning to ECB Even as Manufacturing Picks Up (BBG)
  • China factories scent hint of spring, Europe still chilly (Reuters)
  • Theranos Devices Often Failed Accuracy Requirements (WSJ)

Japan Stocks Plunge; Europe, U.S. Futures, Oil Lower Ahead Of Payrolls

For Japan, the post "Shanghai Summit" world is turning ugly, fast, because as a result of the sliding dollar, a key demand of China which has been delighted by the recent dovish words and actions of Janet Yellen, both Japan's and Europe's stock markets have been sacrificed at the whims of their suddenly soaring currencies. Which is why when Japanese stocks tumbled the most in 7 weeks, sinking 3.5%, to a one month low of 16,164 (after the Yen continued strengthening and the Tankan confidence index plunged to a 3 year low) it was anything but an April fool's joke to both local traders.

Frontrunning: March 29

  • Headline of the day: Oil prices fall as investors' faith in rally wanes (Reuters)
  • Europe shares, dollar gain as investors look to Yellen (Reuters)
  • Chinese Bidder for Starwood Has Mysterious Ownership Structure (WSJ)
  • Germany wants refugees to integrate or lose residency rights (Reuters)
  • BlackRock Joins Pimco Warning Investors to Seek Inflation Hedge (BBG)
  • Goldman Sachs and Bear Stearns: A Financial-Crisis Mystery Is Solved (WSJ)

Futures, Oil Dip On Stronger Dollar Ahead Of "Hawkish" Yellen Speech

With Europe back from Easter break, we are seeing a modest continuation of the dollar strength witnessed every day last week, which in turn is pressuring oil and the commodity complex, and leading to some selling in US equity futures (down 0.2% to 2024) ahead of today's main event which is Janet Yellen's speech as the Economic Club of New York at 12:20pm, an event which judging by risk assets so far is expected to be far more hawkish than dovish: after all the S&P 500 is north of 2,000 for now.

Frontrunning: March 22

  • Brussels Rocked by Deadly Attacks With Blasts at Airport, Subway (BBG)
  • Death count climbs in Brussels blasts (Reuters)
  • Europe on High Alert After Blasts in Belgium (WSJ)
  • Brussels Phone Users Urged to Text Not Call as Networks Jammed (BBG)
  • U.S. Embassy Urges Citizens in Brussels to Shelter in Place (BBG)
  • Oil prices swept lower after Brussels blasts spook investors (Reuters)

Frontrunning: March 21

  • Oil Drops With Emerging-Market Currencies on Rig Recovery Signs (BBG)
  • A plea for help - How China asked the Fed for its stock crash play book (Reuters)
  • Obama to meet Raul Castro on historic Cuba trip (Reuters)
  • Wall Street's Pile of Unwanted Treasuries Exposes Market Cracks (BBG)
  • Dimon's Timing Looks Savvier by the Day as Equities Rebound (BBG)

Central Bankers' Embarrassment Of Stitches

Had central bankers simply taken to heart that well known idiom that cautions "a stitch in time saves nine" early on, they would not now be so frantically stitching such a gaping gash in the world economy. One thing is for certain. All of this quantitative pleasing has done little to lift the spirits of the world’s worker bees.

Bizarro M&A: China's Most Innovative Capital Outflow Yet

The scale of China's outbound investment wave is so great that the value of deals announced in the third quarter of 2015 exceeded China's current-account surplus for the same period, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That trick will be repeated in the current quarter, unless China puts in its best current-account performance since 2008. What is going on here? The answer is quite simple: following Beijing's ramp up in capital outflows, China has found a new and innovative way to export funds offshore.