Archive for the ‘Australia’ Category

Notes From Underground: Are European Bonds Rallying Because Austerity Is Being Rolled Back?

April 29, 2013

It seems that the European debt markets are rallying in response to the end of ADVERSE FEEDBACK LOOPS. In a mind-numbing thought, it appears that the implementation of austerity budgets actually had the effect of increasing deficits as economies slowed as austerity began to bite. (The outcome of the adverse feedback.) The more austerity, the larger the deficit, which is compounding the debt problems of peripheral nations. Greece is the poster child of austerity gone awry. So as the threat of AUSTERITY diminishes, the more a nation’s bonds rally. The ITALIAN BTPs (10 years) saw its yields drop precipitously as a new government was formed over the weekend. But the rally in the BTP futures had begun well before the new government was actually crafted, as I noted last week. The BTP FUTURES had closed over the February 25 high–that was made before the failed election was a reality.


Notes From Underground: Elections Are Over; Time To Focus On …

November 7, 2012

Give the pollsters their due.  They were virtually perfect in the predictions of electoral outcomes. Can the electoral algos now reduce all that data and tell us the policies that will be produced to deal with the problems that plague the U.S.? The Obama victory was greeted by a market selloff as the investment world woke up to the possibility of tax increases and spending cuts leading to a recession and decreased profits. The elections were widely anticipated as the bookies in London and worldwide had predicted. I am left scratching my head, wondering what caused the steep decline in the U.S. equity and commodity markets? The EURO currency was not sold hard enough to think that the Greek situation was the catalyst. Besides, the Greek parliament passed the austerity budget tonight. There is no way that Europe will not provide the Greeks with the promised funds as the outcome would not be worth the 30 billion euros that are in question. If the Obama victory and coming government standoff should have led to a selloff in the BONDS for one would have to be insane to purchase U.S. bonds priced at FED manipulated risk levels.


Notes From Underground: At the End of Q1, Global Equity Markets Are Floating on a Sea of Liquidity

April 1, 2012

The tale of the first quarter tape is in and evidenced by the large gains of the equity markets, global investors have benefited from the sea of liquidity provided by the CENTRAL BANKS OF THE DEVELOPED WORLD. Global stock markets have been calmed by the massive liquidity injections provided by the BOJ, ECB, FED and BOE.The German DAX closed the quarter up more than 15%. The long dormant NIKKEI was up almost 20% powered, by the new inflation mandate of the BOJ/MOF; and, of course, the S&Ps were up almost 12%, while the tech-ladened NASDAQ climbed more than 20%.


Notes From Underground: Examining the Theoretical Premise of Notes From Underground

March 6, 2012

ABSTRACT: A theoretical view of NOTES FROM UNDERGROUND is that the initial action of a flattening yield curve is BULLISH, or, most importantly, not BEARISH for a developed market currency for it signifies that a CENTRAL BANK is ahead of the inflation curve and thus, is given confidence by BOND BUYERS. The corollary to this premise is that flattening curves and certainly inverted curves are a BEARISH INDICATOR FOR EQUITY MARKETS. In a RISK ON/RISK OFF algo environment, the market continually reflects this, especially as we saw today. However, day-to-day trading strategies are certainly not the major test of the theory. A reader of the BLOG commented on Sunday’s post that the opposite view was what he believed. Again, theories are to be tested for trading like good science “ADVANCES ONE FUNERAL AT A TIME.” (Max Planck).


Notes From Underground: It’s March and We Hear the Wind Blowing

March 4, 2012

Do you have to be a weatherman to hear the wind blow? There are many cross currents alive in the investment world as the LTRO is behind us, ISDA defaulted on its role as a referee on global financial issues in the face of political threats from the EUROCRATS, and the Bernanke FED looks to be waiting for a new crisis to erupt before undertaking another further easing. March is always a difficult month for trading YEN as the JAPANESE CALENDAR YEAR ENDS MARCH 31 so repatriation of corporate profits is always a wildcard for any short YEN positions.


Notes From Underground: SettingThe Record Straight … Fair is Only a Line in Baseball

August 2, 2011

The word out of Washington about the BUDGET RESOLUTION is that taxes ought to be raised out of fairness. The President of the U.S. is consistently talking about fair. Give up that specious argument. Is it fair that the savers of this country are being punished so as to bail out the WALL STREET TOO BIG TOO FAIL BANKS? Is it fair that an incompetent Treasury Secretary was allowed to obtain the Treasury position even though it appeared that he cleverly tried to avoid paying taxes? Is it fair that the Wall Street banks were bailed out while mortgage paying homeowners were granted no relief against the coming exploding ARMS mortgages that have worsened the foreclosure problems and continued being an albatross around the neck of the economy?


Notes From Underground: EUROPEAN BANK STRESS TESTS = AYSO Soccer

July 17, 2011

For all those who have ever been involved with American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO), it is easy to see the similarity between the EBA‘s “stress tests” and a youth soccer game. Like AYSO, the Euro STRESS TESTS meant that everyone who plays gets a trophy for showing up. The philosophy is that every participant is a WINNER. Also, there is no keeping score for that would be bad sportsmanship. So, the EURO STRESS TESTS are treated in the same light.


Notes From Underground: Canada’s government is a fallen angel while Merkel’s CDU suffers a severe setback

March 27, 2011

The weekend news was not economic but political as governments all over the globe suffered major setbacks. The Liberals secured a “NO CONFIDENCE” vote in the Canadian Parliament and bring down the Harper Government. I know that Michael Ignatieff will claim that he is perserving the democratic basis of Canada as the ruling party was brought down on an issue of CONTEMPT. The only thing that appears contemptuous is the ego of Ignatieff. He claims that the TORIES are out of touch and out of control. The election is called for May 2 and then the electors will have the final say on who is out of touch. This will be the fourth general election in seven years and let’s hope the citizens of Canada show their anger and elect an outright majority so Canada can get on governing itself.


Notes From Underground: January was the cruelest month for the DOLLAR bulls

January 31, 2011

The weather outside was frightful, but it was nothing compared to the frostbite that all the DOLLAR bulls were subjected to as analyst after analyst laid out their bullish DOLLAR scenario. U.S. assets are very attractive so the foreign buyers are going to be pouring money into the U.S equity markets and all sorts of other investment venues. Today was a perfect example as CNOOC announced it was taking a small stake in Chesapeake Energy projects in Colorado and Wyoming. Foreign companies are searching for U.S. assets as are the sovereign wealth funds, but the inflow of cash into what could be perceived to be strategic assets is much smaller than it ought to be because of the fear of CFIUS.

Money that would be coming to the U.S. economy is fearful that many possible deals will be blocked under the guise of national interest as we saw in 2005 with the CNOOC -UNOCAL deal and then again with Huawei-Palm. Dollar bulls have not gotten the burst that they have hoped for because of “regulatory” interference. It seems to have gone unnoticed but the President’s SOTU address made no mention of reining in the CFIUS group and its nefarious effect on the use of foreign capital to aid U.S. competitiveness. It will be interesting to see if the oversight committee that is under the authority of the TREASURY DEPARTMENT moves to block CNOOC‘s small stake in Chesapeake’s energy projects.

If Treasury continues to block certain foreign acquisitions,  lobal investments will find other opportunities in more welcoming environments. DOLLAR bulls need all the help they can get for it is hard to be bullish while the FED is actively maintaining QE2. Every fundamental bit of positive news in the U.S. still has to overcome a historically steep curve and its implications.

Tonight we will hear from the RESERVE BANK of AUSTRALIA on its interest rate decision. The consensus is for no change in rates, leaving it at 4.75 percent. As always, the Bank’s statement will be an interesting read as Governor Stevens provides the markets with his view on the global economy. Also, we will wait to see if the bank discusses the economic impact of the flooding in Australia and hopefully removes some of the present uncertainty that is overhanging the market.

One of the most interesting moves today was the strong rally in the BRITISH POUND. Readers of NOTES FROM UNDERGROUND know that I don’t believe in fighting market action. After reading Mervyn King’s speech again today, I find it difficult to see how the market thinks the BOE is going to raise rates. I’m struggling to ascertain if POUND strength is indicative of overall DOLLAR weakness as the market is searching for all alternatives. If the previous weakness in the POUND is correcting due to rising exports? Or, is the market providing us with a selling opportunity as it tests some level of resistance? I’m not a technician so I advise for all those as skeptical of the POUND to do your work and find the trade that provides the lowest level of risk. If the POUND is rallying on the back of expected rate increases, I must have read a different Mervyn King speech, for I fail to see the possibility of a rate rise in the near term. And, the fact that the 10-YEAR GILT is near its recent lows just does not provide a bullish backdrop for the POUND.

The U.S. 10-YEAR NOTE has added 70 basis points since Jackson Hole and yet the DOLLAR is 7 percent to 8 percent lower, the argument of a rise in long rates supporting a currency doesn’t hold. Again, let the market be your guide and be prepared in your work.

Notes From Underground: U.S. heaps crap on the Chinese and fertilizer stocks drop

January 19, 2011

As everybody tuned into some form of media knows, Hu Jintao, the President of China, is in Washington for high-level meetings with President Obama. After all the pageantry and display of hospitality, the U.S. President took the effort to admonish the Chinese leader on human rights within China, or rather, the lack of human rights. Mr.Obama also lectured the Chinese leadership on the importance of a world power acting responsibly on the world stage, hence the need for China to be a partner in opposing Iran’s development of nuclear weapons and, of course, in leashing the North Koreans.