State Street

Futures Continue Surge On Global Draghi Euphoria, Tech Earnings

Yesterday morning, when previewing the day's tumultuous events, we said that "Futures Are Firm On Hope Draghi Will Give Green Light To BTFD." And boy did Draghi give a green light, that and then some, when his press conference unleashed one of the biggest one-day US equity rallies in 2015. This morning it has been more of the same, with global market momentum on the heels of Draghi's confirmation that Europe's economy is again backsliding (it's a good thing, if only for stocks), leading to momentum for US equity futures, which together with soaring tech/cloud, earnings if no other, are on their way to take out recent all time highs.

 

Banks Turn Down Deposits As Stealth NIRP Takes Hold

Back in February, we noted that NIRP had officially arrived in the US as JP Morgan announced it was preparing to charge some large institutional customers for deposits. This represented a kind of de facto (if not yet de jure) NIRP. Now, a combination of pinched margins and new regulations has led some of the largest financial institutions in the US to penalize corporate and institutional deposits on the way to instituting what amounts to a stealth version of negative interest rates.

BlackRock, The Stock Market, & The Alleged Evils Of "Volatility"

We would argue the main reason for Blackrock’s attempt to persuade the exchanges to adopt its recommendations on trading halts is that Blackrock itself is inconvenienced by downside volatility. Presumably the company is no stranger to leverage (how else can it squeeze out large returns with a portfolio this large in a ZIRP world?) and is therefore forced to exercise stop loss orders itself when the market declines fast. Such attempts to “regulate” everything, even the price swings markets are allowed to make, are attempts to stem oneself against nature.

Faith In Central Banks Dwindles

There is little that is of greater importance to systemic confidence than faith in the abilities of central banks. Thus, when even the mainstream financial press begins to publish articles about a potential “loss of credibility” faced by these august institutions, one must begin to pay close attention.

Why Stocks Are Sliding: For The First Time Since 2009 Spending On Buybacks Surpasses Free Cash Flow

The aggregate Buybacks to Free Cash Flow ratio for the S&P 500 exceeded 100% for the first time since October 2009. The ratio hit 108% on a TTM basis at the end of Q2, which represented a 12.9% increase quarter-over-quarter and a 42% increase year-over-year. The 10-year median ratio was 72.2%. And that, in a nutshell, is why the market is tumbling today - the biggest buyers of stock in the past 2 years, the corporations themselves, just priced themselves out of the market and no longer generate the cash needed to push their own stock to new all time highs.

Are Central Bankers Poised To Break The World Again?

In his Pulitzer-Prize-winning book, Lords of Finance, the economist Liaquat Ahamad tells the story of how four central bankers, driven by staunch adherence to the gold standard, “broke the world” and triggered the Great Depression. Today’s central bankers largely share a new conventional wisdom – about the benefits of loose monetary policy. Are monetary policymakers poised to break the world again?

Direct Evidence For The Supercycle

Nothing is ever permanent with the QE’s because they were doomed from the start. The “dollar” system can never be refined and remade to its prior station because it was irrevocably broken on August 9, 2007. All that QE’s have done is to create reverberation within the downward channel which may, in the end, only exacerbate the degree of imbalance that weighs on the inevitable shift.

The Exodus Begins: Oil ETFs See Biggest Outflows In 15 Months

Just as we warned previously (here, here, and here), the knife-catching, contango-crushed, BTFDers that piled over $6bn into Oil ETFs have severely underperformed this year. The USO ETF has fallen by more than 9% since the start of the year, whereas front-month U.S. oil futures have dipped by less than 3% on account of roll costs, and as of last week, investors have started to exit this massive position en masse. As Reuters reports, outflows from four of the largest oil-specific exchange traded funds reached $338 million in two weeks to April 8 - the first since September and largest since Jan 2014. It seems Goldman was right about "misguided retail investors."