TB’s Quotes of the Day: “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” – JFK – to most thee days, especially our elected officials, that seems foolish.
“Let’s went!” Leo Carillo, a ‘Pancho’ in The Cisco Kid. He would say this whenever things got heated up. Perhaps its time for us to ‘went.’
“Nobody anywhere was smart enough to figure [it] out…nobody saw it coming.” – Dick Cheney in an AP interview in January 2009 on the financial crisis. From Nouriel Roubini’s book, ‘Crisis Economics.’ Nobody, Dick? Nobody? Not in government because you all, like Greenspan had your blinders on. A lot of people saw it coming including Fed Gov. Ed Gramlich, who was ignored by the Chairman, yet was appalled by the degree of subprime lending that was key.
Bloomberg Top Stories:
*S&P Futures Rise With Commodities on Extended Stimulus; Italian Bonds Gain
*China New Loans Surge as Wen’s Moves to Bolster Economy Raise Money Supply
*Bankers Bonuses Exceed Fixed Pay Ban in EU Draft for Basel Rules – they won’t stop!
*Italy’s Record Inflation-Bond Returns Presage Further Cains – kind of like here, no?
*BlackRock Plans to Introduce Bond-Trade System to bypass Investment Banks – liquidity!!!
*World Trade Growth Will Slow to 3.7% Pace on Europe Crisis in WTO Estimate – oh boy!
*Broadest Bull Market Since 1980 Masked by Apple Adding 8% to S&P 500 Index – told you!
*Argentina Stifles Shale Oil Interest With Threatened Asset Seizure – PetroBrazil, YPF
*Tesla Makes Electric Profitable Cutting Factory Cost as Shares Rise
*Geithner Risk Panel Could Break SEC Deadlock on Tighter Money-Market Rule!!!
*Syrians Take to Streets in Test of Cease-Fire Peace Plan Brokered by Annan – Sad!
*Romney Camp Courting Women Voters While Stumbling on Pay, Job-Loss Issues
Whoopee! We broke the five day losing streak, but as predicted, on LOW volume. 3.77B shares vs 4.66B shares on NYSE listed stocks – and worse on ALL indices it was not only an ‘inside day’ but a dead cat bounce – about half of Tuesday’s loss recovered – at the session highs! NYSE stocks executed on the Big Board collapsed again to 790M shares from the surge to 972M on the selloff from 724M (lowest since March 20), and back to 200M below the falling 12 month average (973M)! Since 2/29 there have now been just THREE ‘average’ days, including 3/16’s high for 2012, and the average has been just 825M shares. Since 11/1 there have been just eight 1B share days…only three in 2012! Since 2/6 there have been FIVE sessions less than 700M shares. 99 of the last 109 sessions have been less than the 12 month average! Advance/Declines were very positive but… +3.8x vs -5.8x!!! vs -4x! vs -1.4x vs -4x! on NYSE and +3.6x vs -4.5x! vs -2.4x vs -1.1x vs -5x! on Nasdaq. Breadth was similar: +3.7x vs -12.9x!!! vs -8x!!! vs -2x vs -6x! on NYSE and +4.3x vs -11.7x!!! vs -5.2x! vs -1.2x vs -8x!!! on Nasdaq. New 52 week highs were not only weak for a 3rd day but they EQUALED new lows: 76 vs 60, high was 420 on 3/26, while new lows plunged to 74 vs 173! The ratio was even after two negative sessions, 1:1 vs -3x!!! vs -2x vs +1.2x vs -2x. The S&P VIX also had an inside day after gapping up Tuesday with a high of 21.06, highest since March 6! It closed at 20.02 -.37 with a range of 220.12-18.73. Doesn’t bode well for a continuation. March 16’s intraday low of 13.66 was lowest since 6/20/07’s 12.75!!!
Here are the results of the last six sessions – 5 of 6 down.Dow +0.7% vs -1.7% vs -1% vs -0.1% vs -1%! vs -0.5%; Transports +0.9% vs -2.1%! vs -1.7%! vs +0.2% vs -0.4% vs -0.2%; Dow Utilities +0.3% vs -1.3%??? vs -0.6% vs -0.5% vs flat vs flat; S&P 500 +0.7% vs -1.7%! vs -1.1% vs -0.1% vs -1% vs -0.4%; Nasdaq Composite +0.8% vs -1.8%!!! vs -1.1% vs +0.4%? vs -1.5%! vs -0.2%; Nasdaq 100 +0.5% vs -1.6% vs -0.8% vs +0.6% vs -1.4%!! vs -0.1%; Russell 2000 +1.6% vs -2.4%!!!! vs -1.8%!!! vs -0.3% vs -1.7%!!! vs -0.7%; NYSE Financials +1.6% vs -2.2%!! vs -1.4%! vs -0.3% vs -1.6%!!! vs -1%. NYSE Financial Leaders: BAC +3.8% vs -4.4%!!! vs -3.3%!! vs +0.3% vs -3.1%!! vs -2%!; GE +1.4% vs -2.4%!! vs -1.5%! vs -1.3%! vs -1.1%! vs -0.3%. Citi not a leader -3.3%!!! vs -2.4%! vs -0.7% vs -3.7%!!! Since peaking at $38.40 on 3/19, it has fallen by 12.6% after closing at $33.58 from Tuesday’s close of $32.86!!! Watch financials!
European equity markets down, Asia up, a reversal of Wednesday: FTSE -0.3% vs +0.7% vs -0.9% vs closed two days; CAC40 -0.5% vs +1.4% vs -1.6% vs closed two days vs +0.2%; DAX -0.1% vs +1.5% vs -1.1% vs closed two days; Nikkei +0.7% vs -0.8% vs -0.1% vs -0.81% vs -0.5%; Hang Seng +0.9% vs -1.1% vs -1.2% vs closed vs -1%; Korean KOSPI -0.4% vs closed vs -0.1% vs -1.6% vs flat; Indian Sensex +0.8% vs -0.3% vs +0.1% vs -1.5% vs closed;. U.S. stocks futures slightly better – but way less than yesterday: DOW +15; SPX +2.20; NDQ +6.25 Bonds little changed following yesterday retreat: 10’s and 30’s above 2% and 3% respectively.10 yr 2.02% +3/32 vs low Tuesday of1.98%! RECORD low 9/23 of 1.6855%; 30 yr 3.19 +3/16; Long TIP 0.76% vs 0.79% It was 0.57% at high. The 5 yr TIP yields MINUS 1.32% vs -1.27%; 10 yr -.29%. Bills 0.07% 1 month; 0.08% 3 months, 6 months 0.13%. Reverse Repo 0.25%. 3 mo. Libor 0.47%, and 0.73%; steady.
Gold closed below $1700 for a 21st straight session, on a day that had just a $10 range and closed little change, making the hit $127 since 2/28, closing $1660.30 -.40. 2/28’s $1792.70 intraday high was not seen since 11/16! It has been above $1600 since Jan. 31, but remains below major support!!! The record high is $1923.70, a buying climax on 9/6. Res is $1695, the 40 day and the 200 day, then $1705, the 50 day, crossing. It is now $1653.60 -$6.70. Crude finally rallied yesterday, closing at $102.70 +$1.68. Tuesday’s low of $100.68 was worst since 2/15/12! It remains well below the range of $105-110 which had held since 2/21!!! RES still at the 50 day (104.01), the 40 day (105.42), and major support at $95.60, the 200 day, res still rising. Crude slightly better overnight and now $103.12 +.42. $101.08, the April 4 low is still minor support – Tuesday’s low $100.58!!! – lowest since 2/15/12!.
Yesterday, was a dead cat bounce in all indices (an inside day and about half of Tuesday’s decline at the session highs). Apple subtracted 2 points from the NDQ 100, on a day where 80 stocks rose, 17 fell, Apple worst, and prior session losers CSCO, GOOG, INTC, and SBUX all gained about two index points. Weak!
The VIX also had an inside day, falling just .037 after rising a big 3.7 points in just two days to 20.39 with an intraday high of 21.06 – highest since March 6 but that was before the quarterend rally which is now making managers wonder if they have blown this quarter by going long. A Bloomberg top story today says the obvious: the big S&P 500 rally wasn’t so big ex-Apple.
Yesterday, TB wrote this…even more applicable today and forgot to give attribution to ISI: over the past two weeks insider selling has beaten buying by 6:1. These are corporate execs…do you think you are smarter than they are? TB doesn’t think he is!
. . . – - - . . . (SOS) . . . – - - . . . (SOS) . . . – - - . . . (SOS) . . . – - - . . . (SOS)
…noblesse oblige Often ironic the supposed obligation of nobility to be honorable and generous. [French, literally: nobility obliges]. A relic of the past in our society. True, literally we have no nobility, but TB would think that a billionaire who can buy government qualifies, n’est pas?
But can you blame them? We are in a society where nobody pays back anything…not just their debts (or the country’s), but for the right and privilege to live in this great country. That blame should fall squarely on the hands of the Office of the President during the Viet Nam war – a short one by Bush’s standards.
That war brought an abrupt end to selective service (the draft and yes it was selective), and with it no sense that anyone owes anything to the country…the antithesis of Israel.
Listen to the people on both sides of the budget issue…as if upholding the Constitution is so sacred but what have they done for it? How many of their children have entered the service and how many would tell them not to do something as stupid as that? Not Paul Ryan (who by the way collected his grandfather’s social security benefits), not Mitt Romney (who did his Morman mission in France where he upset the French with his support for the Viet Nam war…hmmm?), not Barrack Obama, not Eric Cantor (GOP whip and dog), not the Koch brothers (so patriotic), not Joe Biden (who like Dick Cheney managed to get five deferments, but his son served…rare among Congressmen, of coursw he tried to give his Senate seat to his son, who refused to run), John Boehner did (enlisting in the Navy but was discharged due to a bad back). George W. Bush was questionable, having been trained as a National Guard pilot then reportedly ducked the meetings…call him a ‘partial server.’ Is it any wonder that after 9/11 he didn’t ask us to help out but rather shop till you drop?
The point is that these are the people running our country and who have their hands out to big business. Free market capitalism has morphed to what’s in it for me while I am CEO? Yet the GOP staunchly defends this as the very fiber of America…even against Main St.
In the spirit of fairness and disgust for both sides, TB offers two stories today:
The first is from the right-wing Politico.com. A story about . Rep. Allen West, a Florida Republican and Tea Party favorite who publicly said that at least 80 Democrats in the U.S. Congress are communists! Yet another ideologue doing his best to destroy the moral fiber of this country. We learned nothing from the McCarthy era…are we going to destroy lives once more by innuendo? You can easily be accused of being something, but it is impossible to prove you aren’t…TB is disgusted. http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0412/75025.html
Then there is a new book out on Occupy Wall Street. Note this article is from the Economist, a publication that does not have a political agenda and is removed from those of us who do…where will it end?
This article shows what happens when people feel disenfranchised and while TB does not support their actions, this is what happens when we have the biggest financial catastrophe in global history and no one responsible goes to jail or even gets tried criminally. So far, the only one TB knows of is Angelo Mozillo who ripped of his shareholders, then only got fined $67.5 million by the SEC after he lied to Countrywide shareholders and sold his own stock, a la Enron’s Ken Lay (who by dying while his case was on appeal can’t be called a convicted felon…what do you think?), this is why TB is disgusted with Wall Street.
Meanwhile, it is business as usual for Wall Street. Jamie Dimon continues to run a bank that promotes people who cheat other companies and municipalities; Vikram Pandit, has not been charged under Sarbanes-Oxley for withholding information, and other than shareholder dissatisfaction, Lloyd Blankfein continues to run Goldman…who cares? Not the Feds, not the shareholders, certainly not the boards! The only breath of fresh air is Best Buy whose CEO resigned but after TB and others blasted his greed and lack of vision (today the story is misuse of company assets with a female employee…sounds like HP’s Mark Hurd, no? You are not investing in the United States markets…you are gambling, period!
It is time for us to get behind an organization and take on both corporate America and our bought and paid for Congress (they just accepted a watered-down ban on insider trading – the very thing they sent Martha Stewart to jail for).
Speaking of politicians, Romney yesterday made the audacious statement that women comprised 92.3% of all jobs lost under Obama. He then repeated it. Any person with a brain knows this is utter nonsense and statistically impossible. According to PolitiFact which, unlike many others, factchecks to hold politicans accountable. Technically it is partially true, since he is starting mid-way thru the recession. Male-dominated industries such as construction and manufacturing lost most of the jobs under Bush, then in the latter part it hit women – especially teachers laid off by state and local governments. He and the other GOP candidates have criticized Obama for failing to get unemployment down to 8%, yet that forecast, written by Yellen and in line with other recognized economists was obliterated when it soared above 9% prior to Obama’s swearing in. This is just like his saying that we are worse off now then when Obama took office – obviously false, but he keeps repeating it, and gas is more expensive than when he took office. Only in the last few months did it surge to above the Bush years: crude was $32 a barrel when Bush was sworn in, climbed steadily to $78 in 2006, then exploded to $147.27 – a record high on 7/11/08 thanks to the banks front-running it while commodities funds were heavy buyers…it was NOT due to deman! It was $50 when Obama took office due to a freefall in the last half of the year when trading was being investigated. It is now about the midpoint of the run to the highs but would be about $75 if it hadn’t been for Libya and Iran. Romney also will not accept that we are LESS energy dependent than 10 years ago and producing the most oil ever…honesty is not one of his traits…or any politican!
Too bad that Occupy Wall Street couldn’t have been organized by people with a positive vision. TB still likes the name Reform Corporate America (RCA), which would by extension challenge government officials.
TB received a letter last week from a long-time friend who said he was about ready to hit the ‘spam’ button due to TB’s rants. TB thoughtfully wrote him back explaining why. Yesterday he wrote that he has become tired of everything…who can blame him, but we can’t stop trying to change things…or can we? You decide, but if we do nothing we will have only ourselves to blame for what happens to this country under the guise of patriotism. Where are the patriots? Better still, where are the leaders? Selfless leaders!
Have a terrific day! Sorry but next week is a full week as Monday is Patriots’ Day in Massachusetts and Maine, nowhere else, but to avoid giving them an advantage the IRS allows you to pay taxes on the 17th, got it? Ah, another way to ruin your weekend.