The launching of the European missile defense system (Aegis) by the United States in May has repeatedly been criticized by Russia as an attempt by the US to take away first mover advantage in the event that the US ever decided to attack. While Russia has already indicated that the deployment of of Iskander missile systems would be one certain response to neutralize the the anti-ballistic missile defense system, Russia has wasted no time in developing future responses.
50 were killed and at least 53 injured after a gunman opened fire and took hostages at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The shooter has been identified as Omar Mateen, a 29 year old US citizen of Afghan origin, a registered Democrat who had a firearms license. This is the worst attack since 9/11 and the worst mass shooting in US history. Authorities are investigating if the attack was ideologically motivated.
While initial reports are scarce and there is no credible confirmation, moments ago a ProPublica reporter wrote that according to LA law enforcement, a suspect dressed in a camouflage outfit and wearing a security badge, transporting explosives and assault weapons, was arrested in West Hollywood, a popular neighborhood among the Los Angeles gay community, just as the local gay pride Parade was set to begin.
What will likely attract attention, and potentially lead to inquiries into why nothing was done in response, is that only a few days ago a pro-ISIS group released a hit list with the names of more than 8,000 people on it, mostly Americans. One report said that more than 600 people from Florida were on the list, and many of those targeted live in Palm Beach County and on the Treasure Coast.
"This year’s money will be made when the cycle breaks." A stubbornly hawkish Fed could break the cycle, raising rates in a determined fashion, enduring a dollar rally, weaker equities. A persistently dovish Fed could interrupt the cycle, letting asset prices run, supported by a weaker dollar. Or an exogenous shock, like Brexit, could break the cycle too, reorienting the world.
The tragic attack at the Orlando nightclub, now classified as the worst mass shooting in US history, was not the only terrorist incident to take place overnight. Earlier on Sunday, a man set off a home-made explosive at a terminal in Shanghai's Pudong International Airport on Sunday, the city's government said, injuring five people, including himself. After the explosion, the man who threw the home-made bomb slashed his own thoat.
The Goldman Sachs Economics US Current Activity Indicator (CAI) is a proxy for real-time GDP growth and the metric has slowed to 1.3%. Our economics colleagues expect GDP growth will accelerate to a 3.2% pace in 2Q and average 2.3% during 2H 2016. This was the lowest print in over five years.
Once again, on a Saturday night (US time), Sunday morning (China) a sudden burst of buying pressure in Bitcoin, driven by Chinese buyers, has spiked the virtual currency higher on dramatic volume. With Bitcoin now trading at its highest level since May 2014 (in Yuan), and up 250% since we first suggested this an outlet for desperate-to-leave capital outflows in September, we note that the 'arbitrage' of over 150 Yuan points to massively more demand from Chinese buyers for now.
The ever-tightening noose around the neck of man shows no sign of slippage: all actions by all of the governments are anent control and dominion. The path to global governance is plainly marked, visible through all of the turmoil. It is that turmoil, those “incidents” that are created and fostered by the governments that enable them to further constrict the noose. The economy plummets in Cyprus and Greece? Time to limit the cash withdrawals. The European banks are having a “hard time” in places such as France or Spain? Time to pillage people’s savings and their IRA’s. Manufactured crises are the norm, not the exception, and all of them are designed to facilitate one purpose: global governance and the enslavement of mankind.
Hedge funds attracted a net $44 billion in assets globally last year, the smallest amount since 2012. As these increasingly desperate funds try to change that in 2016, one enormous target has been identified in Australia.
Rapper Demarcus Davis, aka Maine Musik, was arrested last week after he was seen on YouTube and in social media posts sending death threats to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, while brandishing stolen guns. The police tracked him down using a house number and street name visible in the video.
When an asset rises by almost 30% in a few weeks, it tends to attract attention. Recently, that asset was bitcoin (BTC). Are these cryptocurrencies mere fads? Or are they potentially game-changing alternatives to the conventional currencies such as the U.S. dollar, Chinese RMB, Japanese yen or European Union euro? There’s no lack of skeptics and critics of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies; yet despite concerns about security, criminal use and volatility, cryptocurrencies have proliferated at a dizzying pace.So what are those who can't follow the technical arguments supposed to make of all this?
We're now well into what I call The Greater Depression. A lot of people believe we're in a recovery now; I think, from a long-term point of view, that is total nonsense. We're just in the eye of the hurricane and will soon be moving into the other side of the storm. But it will be far more severe than what we saw in 2008 and 2009 and will last quite a while – perhaps for many years, depending on how stupidly the government acts.
Why wake up at 3am Eastern, or when the London session begins? Because that's when a clearly documented pattern of strength in the USD versus European crosses emerges, followed by a traditional subsequent reversal during the NY session, one which is worth between 2-3bp in each direction, if timed correctly. Do this a few hundred times per year with some leverage, and there's your 2 and 20 model right there.
According to Goldman, here is the unpleasant choice facing the world: continue slowly sinking into a deflationary singularity, coupled with ever greater systemic leverage which makes escape from the ZIRP/NIRP trap impossible as social unrest builds up and ultimately spills over into the streets, or unleash an inflationary impulse, one which crushes countless debt holders, leads to trillions in losses, and requires yet another consolidated bailout.... oh, and also more social unrest.
So we have a booming market in opaque, complicated financial instruments involving layers of risk, leverage and maturity mismatches. We have unsophisticated investors and issuers, both seeking to avoid government regulations and expecting to be bailed out in the worst case. We have cross-holdings and backdoor exposures to regular credit channels. We have all of this taking place in an environment of booming credit expansion, a deteriorating economy and financial repression. We hate to repeat ourselves, but really... WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG?