Economists figured the recovery would bring about increased confidence and a rise in the birth rate. Instead, the rate dropped into a tie with the lowest birth rate on record. This is yet another surprise for economists to ponder. Time for Janet to start printing babies?
What was most disturbing in BofA's latest debit and credit card spending report is what happened with spending in home improvement stores: spending which traditionally is directly correlated to new home purchases and construction. It crashed, leaving even Bank of America speechless: "We do not have an explanation for this divergence"
Following a shocking report from The Independent indicating a 55% Brexit to 45% Bremain poll, cable and US equities are tumbling to fresh lows as it appears - as Soros warned - Brexit fears are under-priced...
Millions of Americans and Canadians who are counting on pension benefits to fund their retirements risk being severely disappointed. Ironically, as experts worry about stock, bond and real estate market excesses; the biggest challenge facing government bureaucrats and private fund administrators has nothing to do with paying back pensioners. They have known for some time that would not be possible. Their key challenge, will be to ensure that shortfalls occur on someone else’s watch.
"I can't tell you how long it's going to take but I'm anticipating an 80% drop or 70% drop, something in that neighborhood. Tobin's Q got down to 0.54 in 2009...The reason it didn't go lower is because we had the biggest fucking bailout ever orchestrated in the history of the banking system..."
Americans' confidence in the U.S. economy averaged -14 in May according to Gallup, equaling the lowest in two years and considerably lower than the -7 print a year ago as the outlook plunges with 59% of Americans saying the economy "is getting worse." While Democrats are still the only party group to have net positive views of the economy, the latest score was their lowest since at least Jan 2014.
“Everyone has a plan until they are punched in the face.” This famous Mike Tyson quote spells out the outlook for investors in the years ahead according to SocGen's Albert Edwards, who warns that investors will not only be punched in the face, they will also get knocked to the floor and kicked repeatedly in the ribs.
No indications for what - if anything - will result from the secretary general’s acknowledgement that extortion played a key factor in the highly contentious removal of the Saudi-led, U.S.-backed coalition from the blacklist. Considering the enormity of the announcement and the heft of the financial weapon wielded, that question is imperative going forward.
Following last week'sunexpected rise in US oil rigs - and the biggest increase in US Crude production since the first week of January - the lagged price of oil suggested that rig counts would continue to rise this week, and it did - up 3 to 328. Oil prices had dropped from over $51.50 to almost $49 - erasing the post-payrolls gains- ahead of the rig count data and were relatively unimpressed by the print.
To soften the enforcement of obedience, institutions offer various blandishments of recognition: employee of the month, etc. Hierarchical organizations that must compete for workers, such as technology firms, will actively court their employees with Friday parties and various bonding events to generate a sense of purpose and community. But stripped of public-relations cheerleading, these ploys are deeply inauthentic. They aren’t designed to create a real community, but to simply soften the enforcement of obedience with superficial recognition of the human need for recognition and belonging. Their real purpose is to mask the employees’ powerlessness.
The New York bank regulator has asked Goldman Sachs to "swiftly report" on its internal review of more than $6 billion in bond sales for 1MDB, Malaysia's failed sovereign wealth fund. In a letter, the New York bank regulator also asked Goldman to provide an overview, by June 14, of every investigation in the U.S. and abroad into its work for the fund. This is bad new for Mr. Kimora Lee.
For the first time since February 3rd, USDCNH traded over 6.60 as trade data suggests both capital outflows are building (see Hong Kong) and the "China is fixed" narrative is breaking. Whether the Yuan turmoil is responsible - as it has been in the past - for Europe's weakness (and US) is unclear but the last two times the Chinese currency markets started to shudder, the ripples didn't stop until The Fed backed right off...
In what may be the mistake of the century, researchers who corrected a scientific paper claiming social conservatives are associated with psychoticism - when it was in fact liberals - are calling the correction “quite minor.” The correction came three years after the paper claimed social liberals were linked with “Social Desirability,” and conservatives with authoritarianism. In other words, the study actually found that liberals were more associated with being “more uncooperative, hostile, troublesome, socially withdrawn” and “manipulative.”
American warships entering the Black Sea will prompt “response measures” from Moscow, a top Russian diplomat has warned, adding that another US aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean is clearly an attempt to show force ahead of an upcoming NATO summit.
The ongoing criminal probe surrounding Hillary's email server has been marked by opacity and lack of virtually any disclosure, not to mention a major turf war between the FBI and the DOJ, which is why many were surprised when overnight the WSJ revealed that at the center of the probe over Hillary's handling of classified information are a series of emails between American diplomats in Islamabad and their superiors in Washington about whether to oppose specific drone strikes in Pakistan.
Mark Yusko pours cold water on whatever bullishly warm feelings the most optimistic folks may have clung to, warning "it's year 2000 all over again." Here are four major parallels he pointed out that make it clear we are heading for another ugly recession—or are already in one without realizing it.