You put your left poll in, you take your left poll out, you put your right poll in and you shake it all about … and that is how you get the hokey POLLKEY. The markets are moved by the cacophony of polls, both private and public. Couple that with the ability to broadcast any and all results via social media in an immediate fashion, the markets get high frequency volatility. This is why I keep advising to trade with FERVOR, invest with FEAR. Brexit is keeping everyone on edge but the most confusing variable is the BETTING LINES at the London bookmakers. Always deemed the smart money, the odds are favoring a REMAIN vote while the markets are pricing in a higher probability of BREXIT. It’s a great arbitrage opportunity. Global equity markets are certainly fearful as investors are leery of being caught in the downdraft of a BREXIT vote.
Posts Tagged ‘Bund’
(Larry Summers had to run to his medicine cabinet to take Prozac (not Diazepam as in the Rolling Stones song) after he read the G-20 communique. The finance ministers and central bank heads meeting in Shanghai failed to come to terms with any of the issues concerning the global economy. There was no PLAZA ACCORD and no deep discussions about the need for massive fiscal stimulus. The tone of the Communique was TEPID at best and views the present state of the global economy as slow but steady. There was certainly NO URGENCY about a rise in the prospects of a global recession. The finance ministers downplayed the recent volatility and slide in global equity markets, suggesting by those domiciled in ivory towers and model-based rat holes that the MARKETS ARE MISTAKEN AND THE MODELS ARE CORRECT. The arguments among the participants was such that there were some issues that seem in direct contradiction of any policy response.
In the midst of a dramatic seven-day bond selloff, extending from Tokyo to Frankfurt, London, New York and all bond markets in between, Chair Yellen chose today to add verbal fire to stoke the bond rout. In the early hours GLOBAL BONDS had tried to stage a rally from the previous days of endless selling. (It seems that the ECB was in buying European peripheral bonds from Spain and Italy.) Once Yellen began her remarks the BOND onslaught began anew. The key paragraph in the Yellen interview: “We need to be attentive–and are–to the possibility that when the Fed decides it is time to begin raising rates these term premiums could move up and we could see a SHARP JUMP IN LONG-TERM RATES” (emphasis mine). Upon the utterance of those six words the markets took note and the selling of all bonds in Europe and the U.S. accelerated.
In a weekend of very little financial news the biggest story becomes the announcement by Deutsche Bank that its plans to raise 8 BILLION EUROS ($11 BILLION) in new capital to shore up its balance sheet. (Deutsche Bank closed near its 50-week on Friday at $42.17.) I have had many calls and e-mails about the impact from this news. My response to all has been to wait to see how Deutsche Bank trades tomorrow to see if this is a buy the fact opportunity. It is no secret that DB is the most highly leveraged of all the major global banks so a capital infusion is not a surprise event as Europe undergoes ECB-mandated stress tests. The bottom line is that the DB news will have little impact upon the EURO currency or the BUND market. If Deutsche Bank had failed the upcoming stress tests that would’ve been a major news event. Eight billion euros to shore up its balance sheet is a mere ounce of prevention.
In the realm of loving and promoting the irrational over the rational expectations of the MODEL BUILDERS, there is no better poster child than German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble. As I warned Mario Draghi to unpack his speedo, today BLOOMBERG NEWS ran an article, “SCHAEUBLE DECLARES MARKETS WRONG AS EUROPE COASTS INTO VACATION.” This is the German finance minister who has the audacity to proclaim that the markets are wrong and head off for vacation. It seems that the German hierarchy is convinced that all is well because the BUND market is healthy. Is Schaeuble so naive as to think that strong BUNDS reflect the health of Europe? Don’t German policymakers understand that the BUNDS and SCHATZ are at absurdly low levels because many other Europeans are “packing their suitcases” with EUROS so as to transfer their wealth to the perceived safety of the German financial system and thus for its haven status? It is astounding that the EUROCRATS believe that the markets will wait for the decision makers to return before any further market action will take place.
It is startling to think that the S&P downgrades could have any sort of effect on the markets. The sovereign debt markets have been telling those who are attentive that not all countries in the European Union are equal. Several of the GIIPS have had interest rate yields far above those of the German benchmark for almost two years. Even the French 10-year note has widened to 150 BASIS POINTS over the German 10-year BUND during the last six months. DO WE REALLY NEED S&P OR OTHER RATING AGENCIES TO CERTIFY WHAT THE MARKETS HAVE BEEN SAYING?
Almost 67 years ago, U.S. General McAuliffe told the German command that the U.S. forces at Bastogne would not surrender and actually said it in a one-word response: NUTS. In a parallel response to German/Franco demands that all European nations surrender their sovereignty by succumbing to a “FISCAL COMPACT”, British Prime Minister David Cameron basically said the same as the U.K. moved to cast a veto vote on the proposals that resulted from the European Summit.
The European debt markets were thrown into further chaos today as the German/Italian 10-year notes spread blew up. In cash terms, the move was a widening of 58 basis points while in futures prices the differential was 512 ticks. Notes From Underground has been monitoring the BUND/BTP futures spread for almost two years. The BUND and BTP 10-year futures are the proxies for Europe as they are the only liquid contracts available to hedge risk. Prior to September 2009, the BUND was the only bond future contract available to manage risk and speculate on the European debt markets. The ITALIANS moves to list the BTP FUTURES so the banks and pensions would have a viable tool in which to hedge the massive amount of Italian debt that was in the market. It seemed that the Italian finance ministry had a noble intention, but as the debacle of the PIIGS has moved to center stage, the Italian BTP has been the only viable tool for speculators and hedgers to participate in the long end of the EURO debt markets.
Tonight will be all quick hitters as the big news is sparse, to say the least. The Fed released the minutes of the September FOMC meeting. Besides discussing the idea of QE3, the most interesting read was that Fisher was not as hawkish as his NO VOTE seemed. This makes sense as his speeches this week have been pretty DOVISH and I had thought that he was contradicting himself.
Friday’s unemployment report revealed that Thursday’s ADP data was, again, a “FALSE POSITIVE.” The 157,000 ADP gain failed to show in the BLS numbers and all the Wall Street economists were caught off guard as they spent Thursday night ramping up their guesstimates to be more in-line with the private sector prognosticator. The initial response by the EQUITIES was to sell off as the lack of job growth undermines the recent S&P and DOW rally. At day’s end, the equities staged a rally and the loss on the day was small, especially relative to the strength shown early in the week.