Posts Tagged Chris Christie

Trump the bully

Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.
– Samuel Johnson

…what if they have neither…only bluster and cunning?

I may not be able to do anything but it is better to try to do something than to see ones’ country torn apart. Here are a few of my concerns starting back during the campaign:

  • “Crooked Hillary” and “Send her to jail” – is that what responsible people do in an attempt…and it was successful..to win…but the country’s highest office???
  • “I know more about ISIS than any of the generals, I am the only one that can destroy them.” – That alone should have told you to run! Elect Mickey Mouse, anyone but…
  • “She has used her office to collect money for her foundation.” – patently false! Yes, contributions provided access but that is what every politician does – in any country! Add to that, her foundation even with its size has been shown to do good both nationally and internationally. What has Trump’s done…besides self-dealing? A sham! He is going to be fined for using foundation funds to pay HIS fines, purchase a portrait of himself (do I need to even comment on that one), is under investigation on the self-dealing which the foundation has admitted to. Contrast to the Clinton Foundation, because they are scrupulous about paying their taxes and not taking advantage of anything that could be questioned…with good reason.
  • “I will release my taxes at the proper time.” – well, Donald,it is long past that time and you should do it before the electoral college meets on Dec. 19th!
  • ‘nuf said about Trump Enterprises, letting his kids run it and saying that is sufficient. Not for a world leader…of the free world at any rate.
  • Challenging the credibility of our electoral system, which has been used as a model for countries around the world establishing democratic governments. It makes us look like hypocrites…which we are and always have been on democracy.
  • He, Rudy Giuliani, and Kellyanne Conway, all calling protestors ‘cry babies’ and not denouncing the protests quickly enough…include Obama on this. Cry babies who won in their states and feel they have been robbed.
  • Criticizing Jill Stein and the Clinton campaign for seeking recounts in at least three states: Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania…Florida could be next. Consider, Stein raised less than $4 million for her campaign but has received over $6 million for recounts. Trump is furious…as he so often is with that hair trigger brain of his. But wait…he was screaming widespread voter fraud and his ego, despite winning the electoral college (so far that is), cannot bear the fact that he lost the popular (sic) vote by more than 2 million votes! If that is the case, he should prove it, of course he has shown, and facts have shown there is miniscule if any, voter fraud. How could it be done on such a grand scale. Would 2 million people risk going to jail? Thus far there has only been one incident reported: a woman who voted twice…for Trump!
  • “I would have had more votes if I had campaigned in California and a few other states” – so? Clinton would have also had she used his strategy. What’s your point?

The people he has surrounded himself with before (two crime families, which somehow wasn’t picked up by the New Jersey Gaming Board, nor was he required to testify before the board as is required by law…but hey, it’s New Jersey, right Chris? Here are a few: Bannon, the chameleon Giuliani, using Hannity of FOX News as a foil, along with Kellyanne before she resigned to run his campaign (wait I thought it was the liberal media that was the problem…FOX with the worst credibility rating of any news (sic) network for mixing opinion with fact. Worse he had not denounced neo-Nazi’s, the KKK, or any fringe group out to destroy the fabric of our nation. A case in point, Richard Spencer, head of the ‘alt-right’ movement (translation: American Neo-Nazi Party), who held a victory rally  for Trump, using the phrase: “Hail Trump, Hail America” (white that is), giving a Nazi salute which many in the audience eagerly gave. Note his comb over, a replica of Hitler’s. We cannot let this stand!

There you have it, a few of the reasons we cannot allow Trump to be president. Keep on going, Donald, and the electoral college might just hand you a stunning defeat. It is critical with our checks and balances destroyed by the prevalence of the GOP control in the House, Senate, gubernatorial states, state legislators, and the equal weighted Supreme Court about to be turned heavily to the extreme right…and while extreme liberal is communism, the opposite is fascism. Hail Trump…or should it be ‘heil’? TB is ‘seeking’ an answer.

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1/26/15…did you see the GOP ‘leadership’ on 60 Minutes? See end of column

TB’s Wine Quote of the Day: “Age us just a number. It’s totally irrelevant unless, of course, you happen to be a bottle of wine.” – Joan Collins…like: fifty isn’t old for a tree…

Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

This week’s economic calendar is full of important indicators. The highlight of the week will be the Q4 GDP advance (Friday). We will also get January Dallas Fed Manufacturing (Monday), December Durable Goods Orders, November Case-Shiller Home Prices, December New Home Sales, January Consumer Confidence and January Richmond Fed Manufacturing (Tuesday), Q4 Employment Cost Index, January Chicago PMI and January Consumer Sentiment Final (Friday). In addition, the Federal Reserve FOMC will be meeting on January 27th – 28th with an announcement on the 28th. Courtesy of Economic Advisory Service

Overnight Global Markets:

Global equity markets rallying, except U.K. and Japan, India closed: UK – vs +0.2% vs 0.3% vs +0.7% vs +0.5%; France +0.4% vs +1.7%! vs +0.7% vs +1.4% vs +0.5%; Germany +0.9% vs +1.9%!!! vs +0.4% vs +0.3% vs +0.7%; Japan -0.3% vs +1.1% vs +0.3% vs +2.1%!!! vs +0.9%; Hang Seng +0.2% vs +1.3% vs +0.7% vs +1.9%!!! vs +0.9%; Korea – vs +0.8% vs flat vs +0.2% vs +0.8%; India closed vs +0.9% vs +0.4% vs +1.9%!!! U.S. equity futures little changed after opening weak: DOW +11 (range 61); SPX +2.40 (21); NDQ +10 (36). I.S. Markets opening lower.

Global Money Markets: Libor: 0.256% 3 mos.; 0.354%; 6 mos. – still hovering near their recent record lows! The Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.09% and is 0.12-0.14%, still at the 9-month high. T-Bills: 0.01%, 1 mo; 0.02%, 3 mos; 0.07% 6 mos.; 0.15% 1-yr. – back from 0.25% – the 12-month high, like watching paint dry!

U.S. Treasury Bonds: slightly weaker after Friday’s strong rally: 10’s 1.82% -3/16; 30’s 2.38% -1/4; Long TIP: 0.61%! -1/8.

European Bonds: Yields rising…especially Greece pos-elections – Friday’s rally MUST have been short-covering; Portugal and Italy lower: Germany 0.38% +2; UK 1.50% +3 (low is 1.46%); France 0.57% +3; Italy 1.50%! -2; Spain 1.39% +2; Portugal 2.37%!!! -6; Greece 8.74% +56!!! vs 8.21% -36!!! – recent range: 7.03% to 10.29%!!! – cycle low: 5.42%; Crisis high: 12.57%. Japan: 0.22% — low is 0.19%!

Dollar Index struck a new high o/n of $95.527, highest since 9/30/03! Currently 94.862 +.10. Euro: fell again to 1.1098 o/n, now 1.1270 +.0042 – at an 11-year low!!! Sterling barely off its $1.4952 low from Thursday at $1.5024,+.0015, with critical support at $1.48, a double-bottom from 3/29-31/2013! Yen still consolidating at 118.47 +.29 – support is 119, the 40/50 day m/a’s! 1/15’s 115.86 was best since 12/17/14’s 115.57 – weak since peak Oct. ‘14: 105.23; recent best 2/4/14 @ 100.76!!! Record: 12/30/11: 75.35!!!

Commodities: Gold weaker for a 2nd session after closing at $1300.70 – first above $1300 since 8/15! Currently $1286.60 -$6.00, with $1275.60 the session low. (Note Gold stocks did NOT rally with it! Major Res at $1296.40, the 8/28/14 high! Support is the 200 day ($1255). Silver hanging in at $18.12 -.18 with an $18.49 high just below the 200 day (tested three times in last four sessions)! Crude is at $45.90 +.31, after trading down to $44.35 just 15 cents above 1/13’s low: $44.20, lowest since 4/21/09!!! $32.40-.70 is the 12/19/08 and 1/20/09 low is final support!

Friday’s Market Summary:

A weird session – again? The indices were mixed with Dow Transports diving 1.8% after that nice 2.9% gain – nobody said it would be easy…except the talking heads on CNBC.

The rest ranged from DOWN 0.8% (Dow 30), to +0.2% (both Nasdaqs).S&P 500 wsa -0.6%; Russell 2000 off just 01%; struggling NYSE Financials -0.8% with KBW Banks off 1.4%! Sorry, left out Dow Utilities, +0.3% – what a surprise…it took honors – again!

Note that volume dropped 500M shares to 3.6B; A/D’s and Breadth were negative (ex-Nasdaq Breadth +1.3x?; new 53 233k highs up sharply to 433, with new lows a tad lower at an average 112. VIX broke its four day decline – which never took it out of a bearish state – closing at 16.66 +.26.

 

Total NYSE Volume fell to an average 3.6B shares vs 4.1B vs 3.64B vs 3.9B vs 4B vs 4.18B vs 4.37B – 12/24’s 12-month low was 1.4B shares. Shares traded on the NYSE floor also declined to a still above average 785M shares vs 890M vs 771M (2nd lowest of ’15) vs 861M vs 976M shares – the ‘15 high. 12/24’s 349M was the 12-month low…average is 739M shares! Since 1/5 the average is 849M shares – still heavily waited to the downside. The average for Dec. peaked at 979M shares on Dec. 22nd and has been declining steadily.

Advance/Declines slightly negative for the 6th time in 9 sessions. NYSE: -1.2x+3.5x! vs +1.7x vs -1.6x vs +4.4x! Nasdaq -1.3x vs +2.7x vs -1.4x vs -1.5x vs +3x! vs -3.5x!!! Breadth was mixed: NYSE -2x vs +4.2x!!! vs +2.8x vs -1.5x vs +6.9x!!!; Nasdaq +1.3x vs +3.7x!!! vs +1.3x vs 1:1? vs +3.3x! vs -4.9x!!!. New 52 Week Highs surged to 433 vs 259 vs 200 vs 327 vs 323 – their range for the last 12 mos. is 39-612!!! New Lows fairly even at 112 vs 122 vs 177 vs 237 vs 216 vs 282 vs 386 (12/16’s high was 712!!!) The 12-month range is 24-1043!!! S&P VIX had a range of 15.81-17.09 but closed higher at 16.66 +.26 – first increase in five sessions. Thursday’s high is highest since 12/16’s 25.20, which was second only to 10/17’s (31.06!) – highest since 11/2//11!!! Average of the past 12 months is 14.53 and now steadily climbing, with a low of 10.28!…high close was 26.25 on 10/15/14!

U.S. Bond Market closed strong: 10’s 1.80%! +5/8 (1.72% low yield); 30’s 2.37% +1-1/2 (2.36%); Long TIP 0.60% +1-7/8 (0.57%). The score is now 13 rally days in the last 20.

Gold closed weaker at $1292.60 -$8.10 in an inside session following Thursday’s high of $1307.80, highest since 8/19/14! – and closed at $1307.00 +$13.30. Just one close above $1300 since 8/15/14! (note gold stocks did not benefit). Res again at $1300-02, with support at the 200 day ($1255) again! 11/7’s low, $1130.40 is the current 12-month low! This is the first close above $1300 since 8/15. 7/17’s session high was $1346.60, highest since March 19th!!! MAJOR SUP at the 200 day $1255, then the 40 day $1216, followed by the 50 day at $1209. The 12-month high is $1392.60 on 3/17/14, highest high since 9/4/13. Silver, Ran up to $18.54 – taking out a double top with Wednesday’s $18.50 – and touched the 200 day ($18.54), before closing at $18.30 -.06. Is this the long awaited breakout? $14.12 is the recent low (12/1/14), not seen in more than five years!

Crude, which hit $51.27 last Thursday, highest since 1/5, had a new low close of $45.59 -.72, in the wake of Thursday’s ‘negative’ key reversal – this follows the fifth straight, and most significant direction reversal without going anywhere! The pain trade is still not over as $50-52 remains formidable resistance. Tuesday’s low was $44.20, lowest since 3/09. 12/17’s high was $58.98 Consider: 10/25/14’s high was $84.83. There have been 63!!! handles since peaking at $107.73 on June 13th, highest since 9/19/13, and if is off 57% since then! The record high of $147.27 was on 9/30/08. RES at the 40 day ($55.90!!!), then the 50 day ($59.88!!!), and lastly the 200 day ($87.55) – be careful as the averages continue to fall so fast that they could become support soon, precipitating a rally! The range is $44.20-$112.24 since 3/1/12. Note that following the financial crisis it traded down to $32.40 on 12/31/08 from a high of $147.27 just three months earlier (-78%!!!). TB’s bet? $43.83, or else…that is the June 2009 low if that fails, a test of that $32.40 low…by the way the decline from the 9/20/08 high to the low took EXACTLY 6 months – we are now in the 8th month of decline!!!

 

Some Random thoughts:

You may hate the Dems and/or Obama, but 60 Minutes interviewed House Speaker Boehner, and Senate Majority Leader McConnell last night. TB will grant you that he wasn’t pleased with Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi (who hails from arguably the farthest left district in the country), but listen to what these two clowns said:

Did you hear anything in SOTU that you feel could get done in this term?

Boehner: a few but not much

What about tax increases?

That is a dead issue…D-E-A-D

Note this is any increases, as in the gospel according to Grover Norquist; also Obama’s proposal was to close loopholes – anyone doubt that this should be done (carried interest, etc.)? Also, the tax increase keeps all incomes below $250k unchanged or lower, and the $250k marginal rate is extended to $1MM…and above that it is just the amount OVER $1MM…something they refuse to mention!

What about immigration?

Boehner: We are in favor of helping those in country but not the way the president did it.

What about free education at junior colleges?

Boehner: We want to help people but have to review the cost (then launched into a dissertation on the deficit that was without merit as it has declined under Obama

McConnell chimed in that Obama wants to eliminate ‘529’ college savings plans which will ‘hurt the middle class.’

Guess McConnell doesn’t read the studies that show the biggest users are the wealthy, and what Obama obviously meant to was reform it. In case you didn’t know, it has to be used for education by the age of 25 BUT that person can then pass it on to someone else (not necessarily a family member). This can be repeated over and over again. That is insane and only benefits one class: the wealthy. Reform it! As with the ACA, neither Boehner, McConnell, or anyone in the GOP has offered any suggestions for reform, choosing to eliminate ACA with a ‘promise’ to enact a new law…just trust them!

What about infrastructure? It is in dire need of upgrading

Boehner: We agree on the importance of it but you know, with more efficient cars, revenues are declining so we will have to see…

What about raising the gasoline tax? It hasn’t been raised in decades (only ONCE, since initiated by Eisenhower)?

Boehner” No increase.

McConnell then launched into a statement that Obama doesn’t get it. His popularity is declining (ignoring that it has risen since SOTU), and that the people have rejected his plans.

What about the polls that show congressional approval at just 15% – a new low?

Boehner: That needs work.

Note the Iowa confab last week organized by an extremist conservative which is why Jeb Bush, Mitt Romney, and Mark Rubio ducked it. Instead they had such luminaries as Donald Trump (who blasted Romney), Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, and the indomitable Carly Fiorina (who failed at running H-P and now wants to run the country? Keep talking, Carly and you will chase more people away from the Grand OLD Party. Huckabee went off the deepend on a statement about God. Newt Gingrich praised (didn’t sound convincing) the broad number of wannabe’s…perhaps forgetting that that is what happened in the last primary which forced Mitt to the right without being able to state how he implemented state health insurance in Massachusetts.

That is the government we have…it will be interesting to see what happens in two years: reversal of fortune? Pun intended…have a great week! Non corundum illegitimi!!!

TB

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11/18/14…Eric Cantor: loser…or is he?

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.” – Fred AllenBloomberg Quote of the Day: “A man who limits his interests, limits his life.” – Vincent Price

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*Abe Tries to Salvage Abenomics With Early Japan Election, Sales-Tax Delay – arigato!

*Abenomics Tries to Shake Up Japan to Wake Up Its Tired Economy – good luck!

*German Investor Confidence Unexpectedly Surges as Economy Skirts Recession – that’s good?

*Stocks Advance With Euro on German Confidence as Gold, Pound Strengthen – some rally!  

*Bank Indonesia Raises Key Interest Rate to 7.75% as Fuel Prices Increase – increase???

*Greek Bailout Review Is Said Stalled as Furious creditors Demand Savings – 10 yr now 8.09%!

*Fed Dual Mandates Collide as Drop in Jobless Rate View With Weak Inflation – 11.2% is low?

*Russia Predicts Recession Next Year If $60 Oil Adds to Tighter Sanctions – good, but ouch!

*China Steps Up Internet Censorship, Blocks Verizon Cloud Before Conference – LMAO!

*Home Depot Third-Quarter Profit Tops Estimates as Customer Traffic Gains – huzzah!

*Wall Street Banks to Reap $316 Million From Actavis, Halliburton Takeovers

*Keystone Vote May be Too Late to Help Democrats Hold Louisiana Senate Seat

*U.S. Said to Pursue More Mortgage-Bond Fraud Cases After Ex-Jeffries Suit

*Eastern European Elections Surprise As Voters Reject Authoritarian Rule

*Thieves Blow Up ATMs in Crime Wave That’s Leaving Chileans Stuck in Lines – hmmm

*Carnival Enlists Public in Marketing Push to Boos Cruise Industry Image – hah!

*Flash Boys Invade $12.4 Trillion Treasury Market in New Era of Volatility – BAD NEWS!!!

*A Witch Hunt in Finance Won’t Make the World a Safer Place – by Mark Gilbert

*Time for Hong Kong’s Protestors to Think Long-Term – not like Occupy Wall Street, sadly!

Monday’s Market Summary

If you had any doubts that this Friday is options expiration, all you had to do was look at yesterday’s markets. The Russell 2000 -0.7%, Dow Transports -0.5%, and whoa…those Dow Utilities surged 1.3% – so much for their selloff last week. The rest? Dow 30 and S&P 500 both up a whopping (sic) 0.1%, while the Nasdaq’s were down 0.4% and 0.3% respectively. NYSE Financials were flat but within that NYSE Brokers -1%; KBW Banks -0.1%; Nasdaq Banks -0.6% (BofA, usually the most active NYSE stock has been 5th the last two sessions. Since 11/6 it is down 2.5% and on the cusp of breaking $17. A/D’s and Breadth were moderately negative; new 52 week highs rose slightly and new lows declined similarly. Ahem, the VIX which had gotten into neutral/slightly bullish territory, corrected rising to 14.73 before settling at 13.99 +.67…don’t think any of this is options related? Think again!

Total NYSE Volume pretty steady at 3.13B shares vs 3.2B vs 3.46B vs 3.25B vs 2.93B. Average volume since 9/30 is 3.6B shares and now falling, or about 600M more than the 12-month average. Shares traded on the NYSE floor – affectionately referred to by TB as REAL volume dipped below average at 694M vs 705M vs 708M vs 718M vs 614M (lowest since 9/15) – still trending lower. For comparison purposes, for the prior 12 months it is a historically weak 712M shares…but since 10/1: 828B shares (and falling) – including that HUGE 1.22B share day – highest since 9/19, followed by two more 1B plus days leading to options expiry!. The lowest was 10/6’s 696M share session. April 30 – September 30 we had just SEVEN 800M shares…since 10/1: 16, and FIVE 900M+ days.

A/D’s were modestly negative: NYSE: -1.3x vs +1.1x vs -1.8x vs +1.2x vs +1.1x; Nasdaq -1.9x vs -1.1x vs -2x vs +1.6x vs -1.1x. Breadth was strange: NYSE 1:1? vs +1.5x vs -2x vs 1:1 vs +1.1x; Nasdaq -1.7x vs +1.4x vs -1.2x vs +1.6x vs +1.1x. New 52 Week Highs turned around to 242 vs 207 vs 249 vs 276 vs 339 – their range for the year is 39-612!!! New Lows slightly lower at 115 vs 127 vs 146 vs 113 vs 100 vs 85. The 2014 range is 24-1043!!! S&P VIX rose sharply intraday hitting 14.73 (very negative), then closed near the low of 13.99 +.68 and well back in bear territory – bottom of range was a high 13.84. This is its 15th sub-15 close since peaking on 10/15. Heading back toward those bearish extremes that had a high of 31.06 (highest since 11/28/11!!!)? You decide. The average of the past 12 months is 13.97, with a low of 10.28!…high close of 26.25 on 10/15/14!

U.S. bond market closed slightly lower. The recent 12 month low yields (10’s 2.09%; 30’s 2.87%; and long TIP 0.83%), 10’s closed at 2.34% -1/8; 30’s 3.06% -3/16; and the long TIP 1.01%! -7/8. Overnight slightly better: 10’s 2.33% +1/16; 30’s 3.06% +1/8; and long TIP 1.00% +5/16.  

Libor update: 0.232% 3 mos.; 0.326% 6 mos., both steady and just above new record lows! The Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.09% and is steady at 0.09-0.10%. T-Bills: 0.1%, one-month, 0.02% 3 mos, 0.14% one year???

Foreign bond yields lower, except Greece, now back above 8%; watch Japan! (Benchmark is 10yr): Germany 0.79% -1; UK 2.12% –; France 1.14% -1; Italy 2.31% –; Spain 2.09% -1; Portugal 3.13% –; Greece 8.09% +23!!!1 10/16’s close was 8.54%! – cycle low: 5.42%; Crisis high: 12.57%. Japan: 0.50% +3.

Gold closed little changed at $1183.50 -$2.10 – but the range was very narrow. Friday’s session high was $1192.90 – highest since 10/31 AND a ‘positive key reversal for 2nd time in six sessions. 11/7’s low was $1130.40, a new recent low!). The recent intraday high of $1255.60, highest since 9/10/14, was rejected. The last 14 sessions have had prints below $1200 first time since 12/31/13 Last close above $1300 was on 8/15. 7/17’s session high was $1346.60, highest since March 19th!!! Res is at $1200 (psychological), then the 40 day at $1206, the 50 day $1211, then the 200 day at $1278, all declining. The 12-month high is $1392.60 on 3/17, highest high since 9/4/13. $1130.40. 11/7’s low was $1130.40! Overnight, it is STRONG! $1201.80 +$18.30 and near its high of $1204.10 – first time above $1200 since Halloween! Silver also rising to $16.40 – 2nd day above $16, also highest since 10/31 and back from 11/5’s low of $15.12, more than a five year low.

Crude closed slightly lower at $75.64 -.18, two days after setting a new recent low of $74.07, lowest since 9/17/10!!! 10/25’s high was $84.83. There have been 33!!! handles since peaking at $107.73 on June 13th, highest since 9/19/13. The record high of $147.27 was on 9/30/08, the low since on 12/30/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. RES at the 40 day ($83.63!), then the 50 day ($85.48), and lastly the 200 day (97.14), all continuing to plunge and accelerating to the downside. If it fails here we are now looking at $70! The recent range is now $74.07-$112.24 since 3/1/12. Overnight it is slightly better at $75.92 +.28 with a high of $76.44.

European equities higher, Asia mixed but Japan/Korea strong!!! UK +0.5% vs -0.1% vs -0.1% vs -0.1% vs -0.4%; France +0.7% vs – vs +0.4% vs -0.4% vs -1.1%; Germany +1.2%! vs – vs +0.1% vs -0.2% vs -1.3%; Japan +2.2%! vs -3%!!! vs +0.6% vs +1.1%! vs +0.5% vs +2.1%! Hang Seng -1.1%! vs -1.2%! vs +0.3% vs +0.3% vs +0.8%; Korea +1.2%! vs -0.1% vs -0.8% vs -0.3% vs +0.2% vs +0.2%; India -0.1% vs +0.5% vs +0.4% vs -0.2% vs +0.4%. U.S. equity futures little changed in a narrow range: DOW -3 (range 41?); SPX -2 (6!); NDQ -5.50 (18).

 

Some random thoughts:

…loser…only if that means earning $1 million a year and a guaranteed $400k bonus! Ah, but that’s next year. He was hired for $400,000, a $400,000 signing bonus and $1 million in restricted stock that vests over five years. Next year, a guaranteed $1 million plus $400,000 in restricted stocks. Moelis says the former college professor turned Tea Party advocate and a House Majority Leader, will add to their boardroom talent (bored room?). Let’s drill down, shall we?

Cantor is a college professor turned Tea Party politician…he has no background in investments (not that that means anything). So while he is licking his wounds from being surprisingly defeated, in the primary no less, by a nobody (a first for a Majority Leader), he gets the deal of a lifetime. Isn’t that special?

Who the hell is Moelis and Company? Founded in 2009 it received accolades from financial publications in 2009-11. But…have you ever heard of them? Not TB, not until now! Well you will hear more starting today as they are doing a secondary offering (IPO was April 15th – interesting date, that)…led by Goldman, Sachs, natch. The IPO wsa priced at $25 and was one of those rarities where it didn’t soar on opening day…high on April 15th was $27.32. It was fallow for about a month then rose to $37.36 on 9/2, closing yesterday at $34.22. So what about today’s offering? Bolster capital? Hardly! The company says the proceeds will allow existing shareholders to sell and while the company will buy some shares, those will be used to buy out employees holdings. Net effect on company – zero…but less equity for management…isn’t OPM great???

So beside Cantor, why the interest in this company by TB? Well…they bill themselves as a ‘boutique’ firm serving international clients…ok…but that word has a lot of bad historical connotations. For instance:

In 1982, when TB was an institutional bond salesman with Merrill Lynch, a firm called Drysdale Securities, ‘couped’ a treasury auction – that is, they bought it driving the price of the bonds high as the other primary dealers were forced to cover. Ah, but then, it came out who owned it and guess what? The bid vanished! (TB knew of Drysdale as a no-impact muni bond dealer so when he was told it was a ‘boutique’ government securities firm, TB was left scratching his head: how does a small firm outsmart Salomon Brothers and Goldman on a huge treasury auction. The answer is: they don’t!) They had to finance it and that was a problem. Hint: when you own most of what there is of anything in a transparent market like U.S. treasuries) more or less. But how?

They tried borrowing but nobody wanted to lend to them…enter Chase: they were ‘retained’ to get repo customers for the paper. Here is what they said to the big banks they called: “would you do a repo with Drysdale?” Answer of course was an emphatic NO! “Okay, would you do it if Chase guaranteed it?” Sure! Why not! So when the firm imploded under the weight of the treasuries, Chase was on the hook (which they tried to deny) for the losses on the repo’s (actually reverse repurchase agreements as the client was putting up the money in return for the bonds as collateral.

Then of course, there was another politician who really turned bad but as a member of two tightly-knit clubs: being a former senator and a governor (NJ): Jon Corzine, former CEO of Goldman Sachs (why does that name always come up???). Interesting as he was preceded by Stephen Friedman who later, while a director of Goldman, and serving as president of the New York Fed, was buying up Goldman shares, even as Lehman was collapsing on insider knowledge that GS would be declared a bank and thus get a bailout…the bailout engineered by Corzine’s successor, now Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson…got it?

Corzine became the CEO of MF Global and with knowledge of its teetering financial condition tried to arrange a sale so he could collect a nice bonus. Failing that, it was shown that client funds were used to inflate the capital of the firm – without their knowledge – which Corzine denied but which the courts held that he was responsible…not that anything happened to him however. What was interesting to TB was that MF was a ‘primary government securities dealer’. TB having worked for two (Merrill Lynch, and LF Rothschild when their application was in to be a primary), and they were closely monitored by the New York Fed. That practice was abandoned by the Fed in the early 1990’s, who said they were not responsible for the financial condition of the primaries. Not responsible??? That is like a bank making a loan with no documentation…an unacceptable excuse! (He was beaten for governor by Chris Christie…who got his own share of scandals).

Back to Friedman, when GS became a ‘bank holding company’ – which is not the same as a bank – he was elected to and served as president of the New York Federal Reserve while a director of GS…a violation of Fed rules, but he got a ‘waiver’. Then while president he began accumulating GS stock claiming it was ‘undervalued’ – this ‘used to be’ known as insider trading. Without admitting guilt he relinquished the shares and disgorged the profits and resigned from the board – of the Fed, not GS! Compare and contrast to Martha Stewart for just one minor infraction!

Enough! How about some other cases of politicians doing well in the private sector:

Let’s start with Sen. Billy Tauzin…ah, another GOP guy. He led the Bush 43 – induced design of the seriously flawed Medicare Part D…insuring that unlike Medicaid, it not be able to contract for prescription drugs. For this he was awarded (after not running again for ‘health’ reasons), was named head of the Pharma lobby and earned several million over the next few years. Nice work if you can get it…and have no morals!

Next, good old boy Sen. Phil Gramm of the great state of TEXAS! Where do we start with him? How about first, his wife Wendy, a former CFTC chair who exempted Enron from commodities regulation, then served on the audit committee of Enron and found nothing wrong, while making a million on the stock. Unbelievable! As for Gramm, he co-authored the Commodities Futures Modernization Act, and then not as a senator violated rules by lobbying on the floor of the Senate. What the Act did was destroy all efforts to regulate derivatives as former CFTC head had attempted, only to be slandered by Rubin, Summers, and of course, Greenspan, who failed to see three bubbles which he oversaw, and never saw a regulation he liked (here is a link to this slime: Phil Gramm/Mother Jones . What did Gramm get?…why to be Chairman of UBS Americas Investment Bank, retiring in 2012.

Getting tired of reading? TB is tired of writing so skipping Larry Summers brief stint being paid by the Wall Street lobby…not as a lobbyist but giving speeches paid for by firms, let’s skip to the wonderful Robert Rubin, former Treasury Secretary…oh yeah and from…Goldman Sachs.

Thanks to the revolving door the Bill Clinton promised to close, he left treasury to become Vice Chairman of Citicorp – without portfolio…and charged with dealing with their biggest accounts (just like Cantor will do!). As a former Citi exec told me, he constantly told them to take more risk…be like Goldman (but Citi really was a bank!), and watched as its assets declined by 70%. Then, when CEO Chuck Prince resigned in the scandal.. Rubin briefly served as Chairman…Sandy Weill stepping aside – wisely! Rubin said he had no idea they were taking risks…despite whistleblowers warning in memos to senior management of undocumented loans!

(Note also that while Treasury Secretary Weill enlisted his support to kill Glass Steagall, which he did and which allowed Citi to do a stock swap for Travelers, which Weill also controlled. Weill, couldn’t even wait for the ink to dry on the bill so he ‘illegally’ did the swap before it died! Nothing, of course, was done.

Get it? Nothing to see here…nothing new…just another quid pro quo…ain’t that special!

TB

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3/19/14…Crimea (a-crime); government’s value?; and Christie (RIP)

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “Why do I need a gun license? It’s only for use around the house. “ – Charles Addams – or the NRA!!!

Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “It’s never just a game when you’re winning.” – George Carlin…oh? What about when you are losing?

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*JPMorgan Said to Agree on Sale of Commodities Unit for Up to $3.7B – sell five of them and they would recover the London Whale losses – hah!

*Deutsche Bank Said to Plan Investment Bank Job Cuts as Business Stagnates

*Dollar Strengthens With Ruble as Gold Drops Before Fed Stmulus Decision

*’Ring of Death’ Throttles Georgia (U.S.) as Banks Too Small to Save Leave a Void  

*Citigroup Foresees Customized Trades Generating 50% of Derivatives Revenue – read unregulated trades…you know, the ones that created the crisis! Sheesh!

*U.S. 4Q Current Account Deficit at $81.1B; Est. $88.0B – got it, GOP? IMPROVING!

*BMW Sees Refreshed Models Spurring Significant Profit Gain; Shares Climb

*Flaherty Ends Tenure as Canada Finance Minister Amid Clashes Over Policy

*Gabelli Is Best in Decade Picking Value With Mighty Mites; Riskless Return

*Tiger Woods Joins Harvard’s Hedge Fund With the Kardashians – time to get out???

*Brazilian Billionaire Cherishing Life Creates Six-Point Plan to Beat Death-don’t go out

*West Readies Toughened Sanctions on Russia After Putin Seals Crimea Claim– a crime!

*Malaysian Jet Investigators Probe Deleted Simulator Data as Search Narrows -pilots!

*South Africa Ombudsman Says Zuma Guilty of Misconduct for Spending on Home

*Robotic Suits to Help Walking Offer New Tools for Aging, Disabled – nice!

Tuesday’s Market Summary:

This afternoon we get the Fed announcement on whether they will cut the QE buys from $65B to $55B a month.

Another ‘up’ day only less so…AND only on a slight increase in total NYSE volume to a still very weak 2.91B shares from Monday’s 2.84B shared day…even more significant was back to back 2nd lowest volume traded on the NYSE of the year: 585M shares replacing Monday’s 606M share session – proof the rally is meaningless and might even have a correction before Friday’s options expiry…possibly today? The Russell 2000 took honors at +1.4% followed by the Composite +1.3% and the NDQ 100 +1.2%. Meanwhile the Dow was up just 0.6% and the S&P +0.7%, followed by Dow Transports +0.5% with the only loser being Dow Utilities -0.2% – its first decline in five sessions net +2.8%! NYSE Financials rose 0.5% vs +1%.

Advance/Declines AND Breadth were finally pretty strong but offset by the low volume: A/D: NYSE +3.2x/+2.6x/+1.4x/-2.0x/+1.4x/-2.1x, Nasdaq +3.1x/+1.8x/+1.2x/-3.3x/+1.3x/-2.7x; Breadth +3.8x/+3x/-1.2x!/-5.2x!!!/+1.1x/-2.4x, and +3.3x/+1.7x/+1.04x/-3.4x!/+1.8x/-3.3x/-1.2x. New 52 Week Highs were little changed at 269 vs 242 vs 146 vs 164 vs 117 vs 251 vs 226 vs 382 vs 486 while New Lows slipped to 32 vs 36 vs 72 vs 79 vs 63 vs 44 vs 35 vs 20 vs 16 (new low).

Overnight Comments:

Bonds: gained ground early but then closed only slightly higher but remain at lower end of trading range since 3/3 (10’s 2.67% vs 2.69% after hitting 2.79%; 30’s 3.61% vs 3.63% back from 3.73%). Overnight starting to weaken : 10 yr 2.68% -1/16; 30 yr 3.62% -3/16; TIP 1.31% -1/4. Recent ranges: 30 yr high was 3.97% on 12/31; the 10 yr recent high 3.03%! Long TIP recent high was 1.64% The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5/13.  Libor update: 0.235% 3 mos, 0.334% 6 mos. –  record lows set recently: 0.329% 6 mos! 3 mos  0.233%!!!). NOTE the Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.08% since 5/22/13 and is steady at 0.07-0.09%!!! Foreign bond yields little changed ex-Greece/Portugal which are lower: Germany 1.58% +2; UK 2.69% +2 – recent high 3.03%! France 2.13% +1; Italy 3.36% –; Spain 3.30% -0; Portugal 4.36% -4; Greece 6.63 vs 6.70% -8– didn’t stay above 7% for long after trading as weak as 7.1% for first time since 2/26; two week ago intraday low hit 6.57%! Recent range now 6.57% to 12.57%. Japan: 0.60% -1.

Gold closed lower at $1359.00 -$13.90 a day after a recent high of $1392.60, highest high since 9/4/13 – just before the selloff began!!! That ended in an outside day and nearly a negative key reversal!It has closed above the psychological $1300 every day since 2/12! It has also been above the 200 day since 2/14, which is major support at $1304. Jan. 2’s low was $1181.40 – A MULTI-DECADE LOW!!!  Psych level: $1300 support, also technical with the 40 day, $1306 and now the 200 day at $1304! Further support at the 50 day ($1293). Overnight, weaker again at $1346.10 -$12.90.

Crude continues to trade weak but spiked yesterday to $99.78 before settling at $99.70 +1.62, a day following a session low of $97.37 lowest since February 6th which resulted in a negative key reversal!!! It had held ‘par’ since 2/12 – the first time since 12/27/13! 1/14’s low was worst since 5/2/13: $91.24! The record high of $114.83 was on 5/2/11, the low since on 10/4/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. First RES is now the 40 day ($99.81), with first SUP at the 50 day ($98.47), while the 200 day is way above at $100.24! The recent range is $85.61-$112.24 since March 1, 2012. Overnight, $99.57 -.13 and quiet.

Global equity markets mostly higher: UK – vs +0.4% vs +0.6%; France +0.2% vs +1% vs +0.9%; Germany +0.7% vs +0.8% vs +0.8%; Japan +0.4% vs +0.9% vs -0.4%; Hang Seng -0.1% vs +0.5% vs -0.3%; Korea -0.1% vs +0.7% vs +0.4%; India – vs +0.1% vs +0.2%. U.S. equity futures slightly higher in a narrow trading range: DOW +21 (range 55); SPX +2.70 (6); NDQ +6.50 (12).   

 

Some random thoughts:

First and foremost: they events in Russia and the Ukraine are being underplayed. This ‘taking back what belongs to Russia’ is exactly what Germany did under Adolph Hitler while the free world simply watched. Not until they attacked Poland did the react and by then Germany had taken so much land that the war became prolonged (short in terms of Afghanistan and Iraq though!). This is a much more difficult situation but one that will take years…decades?…to play out. Meanwhile, the markets are oblivious. We will pay!

At the risk of appearing lazy, TB is going to defer once again to James Kwak of The Baseline Scenario. We have been spoonfed a theory that government is bad and things like ‘faith-based’ charities are the way to go. The federal government is evil according to Grover Norquist and there is no need for it. These same people love to extol the virtues of states rights and letting them allocate resources. Has anyone bothered to check that out? Do you really believe the states are in a position to provide a lifeline in a crisis?

Ger real! Here is Kwak’s latest column…

Mike Konczal wrote an excellent article for Democracy about the problems with a voluntary safety net and the superiority of government social insurance. The article draws on serious historical research (by other people) to prove two main points: first, there never was a Golden Age of purely voluntary charity; second, and more important, what charitable support mechanisms existed were not up to the challenges of the Second Industrial Revolution of the late nineteenth century and completely collapsed with the onset of the Great Depression.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise. There are basic economic reasons why public social insurance is superior to voluntary charity. The goal here is to protect people against risk: of unemployment, of health emergency, of outliving one’s savings, and so on. For a risk-mitigation scheme to work, there are a few things that are necessary. One is that people actually be covered. This is something you can never have with a private system (unless it’s regulated to the point of being essentially public), since charities get to pick and choose whom they want to help. As Konczal says of private agencies before the Depression,

“They were also concerned they’d lose their ability to stigmatize—or to protect—various populations; by playing a role in determining who wasn’t deserving of assistance, they could shield those they felt worthy of their support.”

Another thing you want is the assurance that the system has the financial capacity to actually protect you in the event of a crisis. That’s why you don’t depend on your neighbors to rebuild your house if it burns down. Besides the fact that they may not like you, they probably don’t have enough money—especially if you lose your house in a fire that burns down the entire neighborhood. As I’ve said many times before, there is no other entity in the country—and not really one in the world—with the financial capacity of the federal government. Even state governments scramble to cut benefits when push comes to shove, which is one reason why some states provide Medicaid coverage to almost no one.

We like to think that we are a nation of generous people who will help each other out, but that isn’t really true. We do have a much larger charitable sector than other advanced economies, where the state shoulders more of the burden. But more than half of our total donations go to religious organizations, private schools, and medical organizations, with only 12 percent going to human services organizations. Some money does filter from other organizations to the poor, but at most you can get to one-third of the total. (The vast majority of my donations have gone to services for the poor, primarily legal services.) I’ve argued elsewhere that we should place limits on the tax deductibility of charitable contributions, which are effectively a way that rich people can force other taxpayers to contribute to their pet charities. But as long as we have this idealized picture of our charitable sector, it isn’t going to happen.

If you liked Chris Christie and still do after the revelation that his convictions as an AG for the state of New Jersey were big victories, you had better catch up on how this bully has beaten the system. By going after small-time local politicians and letting organized crime off and that raises questions about his integrity. Especially a case of a strip bar that had underaged foreign girls being forced to work for $250 a week to pay off ‘smuggling’ fees. Did he go after the owner? Nope, she got a hand slap and instead he got a conviction for a local mayor whose wife was a friend of the owner. That is disgusting…and disturbing!

Have a great day!

TB

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1/10/14…no mojo in market so ignore payrolls – December, stupid!

Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “Imitation is the sincerest form of television.” – Fred Allen, and “you can always tell when television executives are in a restaurant: they keep ordering and cancelling, ordering, and cancelling.”–Bob Hope 

Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “Design is not just what it looks and feels like. Design is how it works.” – Steve Jobs

U.S. Non-Farm Payrolls rose by a weak 74k in December vs consensus 197k, smallest gain since January 2011!!! (on CNBC, a forecaster who consults to stores said that is is normally 1/3 of November due to just 12 hiring days, even flopped there). November was revised UP to 241k vs 203k, October unchanged. Private payrolls rose by 8k while government SHRUNK by 13k – still think we should leave it to the private sector? Factory Jobs rose by 9k, Construction FELL by 16k! Also, 273k were not working in December due to weather – most since 1977 doesn’t bode well for GDP, right?  

The Unemployment Rate declined to 6.68% vs 7.02% – simmer down! The Labor Participation rate plunged again to 62.8% – yet another multi-decade low…the FED is going to be concerned…as should you! For all of 2013 unemployment averaged 7.4%, lowest since 2008 – that’s the ‘good news’ bad news is that it is a meaningless number now that the GOP has chopped emergency unemployment from the rolls – FOOLS, and that didn’t show up in December because it happened well after the cutoff date! Capiche? What was the ‘underemployment’ rate: 13.1%! Something to be proud of? No, ashamed! Average hourly earning rose a puny 1.8% in Dec. from a year ago – get it?DECEMBER average hourly earnings? +0.1%! Criminal while CEO’s enrich themselves! Also, the household measure of jobs rose by 143,000 – remember you don’t have to be paid to count in this number…just say you worked for even an hour a week!   

Market Reaction: stock futures were up, then plunged to negative on the news, quickly recovered (most likely due to the faux unemployment rate),then when market opened have been volatile but the Dow has remained positive and is now up 19; Transports strong ? – up 46 points. Bonds were up slightly before the reports then rallied as they understand that the unemployment rate is meaningless blather…it is the underemployment rate at 13.1% that concerns them…and no need to. Long end is up ¾ and steady!! Gold rallied sharply and is up $11, while Crude is up but coming off the low since 5/2/12! Dollar little changed except Yen is stronger coming off that recent low. Suckers market!!!  

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*Payrolls in U.S. Rise Less Than Forecast While Jobless Rate Drops to 6.7%(SCAM!)

*Target Says Personal Details of up to 70 Million Customers May Be Stolen – EGADS!

*Treasuries Gain With S&P 500 Futures (?) as U.S. Unemployment Growth SLOWS!

*Bankers’ Warnings Are Heeded as Regulators Poised to Dilute Leverage Ratio – this will create another financial crisis…do you still doubt the banks are in charge???

*Ignore Wall Street’s Banks Is Skagen Advice on Emerging Market Bets – he says buy

*New York Probes Brokerages to Analysts After BlackRock Survey Settlement UGH!!!

*VW Is Planning to Build New SUV in Tennessee to Revive U.S. Expansion

*Julian Rifat Is Said to Face Charges in Biggest U.K. Insider-Trading Probe – !!!

*U.S. Jobs Report Often Seems to Be a Rorschach Test for Nerds – do tell i.e. today!

*Christies’ Handling of Crisis Fualted for ‘Bully’ Quote that Evokes Nixon – fool!

*Obama Fast-Track Trade Agenda Risked by Opposition From Labor-State Levin

*Indian Diplomat Leaves U.S. After Visa Fraud Charges That Fueled Tensions

*Water Worries Lead Texas Homeowners to Fault EPA over Use of Driller Data

 

Thursday’s Market Summary:

A second straight mixed session ahead of December payrolls. NYSE Volume was slightly lower at 3.56B shares, slightly less than Wednesday’s 3.63B shares – highest since December 20th Real NYSE Volume slipped to a slightly below average 697M shares vs 759M – not only highest but first time above 700M since 12/20! Dow Transports rose 1% for honors followed by the usually ‘weak’ Dow Utilities +0.7%. Dow -0.1%: S&P 500 flat, the two Nasdaq’s both slightly weak and offsetting Wednesday’s puny gains. The Russell 2000 was up just 0.1% as were NYSE Financials – carried by the KBW banks and led by BofA for a second straight session …if that makes sense to you…

Apple continues to trade ‘psychotically’ losing nearly 1.32% and offsetting Wednesday’s 0.6% gain vs -0.6% vs +0.8% vs -2.2% vs -2.4%. Why the interest in Apple? Because it is a significant part of the two Nasdaq’s (especially the 100) and the S&P 500, weighting unavailable.

Advance/Declines were narrow and mixed while Breadth were slightly negative/ The VIX  was parallel to Wednesday and closed ever so slightly higher at 12.89 +.02, but the range was 12.83-13.26 – slightly ‘outside’ but essentially identical. Today???

The Nasdaq 100 lost 15 points (5.6 from Apple) vs +10  vs +31 vs -12 vs -25 vs -28 vs +22. Breadth was slightly negative. EIGHT members lost more than one index point, while four gained more than a point: APPL -5.6!!! vs +2.7 vs -3 vs +4.4 vs -9.7!!! vs -6.4! vs +5.3! vs -2.6 vs -3 vs -2; GOOG -2.7; BBBY -1.9; MSFT -1.7 vs -4.8!!! vs +1.9 vs -5.6! vs -1.9 vs -2 vs +1; FB -1.7; BIDU -1.5; FOXA -1.2; CSCO -1;  AMGN +2; COST +1.7; GILD +1.1 vs +0.9; ESRN +1.

Dow 30 -0.1% vs 0.4% vs +0.6% vs -0.3% vs +0.2%; Dow Transports +1% vs +0.3% vs +0.7% vs -1.3%! vs +0.5%; Russell 2000 +0.1% vs – vs +0.9% vs -0.8% vs +0.5%; Dow Utilities +0.7% vs -0.5% vs +0.8% vs +0.2% vs -0.3%; S&P 500 – vs — vs +0.6% vs -0.3% vs –; Nasdaq Composite -0.2% vs +0.3% vs +1% vs 0.4% vs -0.3%; NDQ 100 -0.4% vs +0.3% vs +0.9% vs -0.3% vs -0.7%.

*NYSE Volume was slightly lower at a still above average 3.56M shares vs 3.63B vs 3.48B vs 3.23B vs 2.76B vs 3.06B vs 2.3B vs 2.27B vs 2.04B. The record high (?) is the 4.97B shares of 12/20/13 and Q3 end of quarter while 11/29’s 1.59B is weakest of 2013). REAL NYSE Volume slipped to a slightly below average 697M shares vs 759M vs 699M vs 669M vs 544M vs 624M vs 568M vs 462M vs 424M, from the new 12-month low of 272M. The average since 12/20 is just 562M shares with a high of 759M! The 12 month is 719M shares. Last year there were just TEN 1B+ share sessions! There were 39 800M+ shares in 2013: 18 up, 19 down, three mixed.

*New 52 week highs have ranged from 33-864. They rose again to 435 vs 355 vs 316 vs 271 vs 217 vs 201! Recent high is a super-strong 890!!! New lows were slightly higher at a weak 44 vs 30 vs 20 vs 30 vs 23 vs 43 vs 78 vs 72 vs 76 vs  60 vs 44 vs 68 vs 81 vs 127 vs 131. Recent high is 353; low 20!!!  

  1. Advance/Declines were narrow and mixed: +1.1x vs -1.3x vs +1.9x vs -1.2x vs +1.8x (recent range -17.5x to +6x) on NYSE and -1.1x vs -1.1x vs +2.3x vs -1.7x vs +1.6x (recent -4x!!! to +3.8x). Breadth was slightly negative: -1.03x vs +1.04x vs +1.5x vs -1.3x vs +1.2x (recent -18.6x!!! to +7.2x!!!) on NYSE and -1.2x vs +1.4x vs +3.8x!!! vs +1.1x vs +1.2x (recent -12.8x to +6.5x).  
  2. NYSE Financials +0.1% vs +0.4% vs +0.4% vs +0.1% vs +0.5%; BofA most active – per usual and strong: +1.5%!?! vs +0.4% vs -1% vs +1.5%??? vs +1.9%???, closing at $16.83 +.25. Brokers – vs -0.4% vs +0.7% vs -0.4% vs +0.6% vs -0.4% vs +1.2%!; KBW Banks +0.7% vs +0.8% vs +0.4% vs +0.4% vs +0.8% vs -0.5% ; Nasdaq Banks +0.4% vs — vs +0.5% vs -0.7% vs +0.2% vs -1.3%!!!
  3. Volatility (S&P VIX) rose infinitesimally for the first time in five sessions but remains below the 40/50 day (13.62/13.56) and well below the 200 day (14.40), closing at 12.89 +.02. 12/26’s (TB’s birthday) 11.69 was lowest since 3/15/13!!! Recent high on 1/2 was 16.67! The recent range is 11.83-21.01!!! It peaked at 22.79 on 12/28/12…ytd the range is 11.05 (3/14) to 21.92 (6/24)!

Bonds were a little higher BUT led by the long TIP which gained a point to close at 1.44% – what’s with TIPS with no inflation factor. Bonds were slightly better overnight but rallied on the payrolls weakness: 30 yr 3.84 +13/16; the 10 yr 2.90% +1/2, recent high 3.03%! Long TIP 1.41% +3/4!?! The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5. The recent high yield: 1.64%! Libor update: 0.242% 3 mos,0.344% 6 mos. BOTH at the new record lows 0.240%!!! and 0.344% respectively!). Foreign bond yields lower across the board: Germany 1.6% -6!!!; UK 2.90% -8!!!! recent high 3.03%!; France 2.52% -5!!!; Italy 3.90% -3; Spain 3.80% +1; Portugal 5.33% -1; Greece 7.51%!!! -4. Recent range NOW: 7.51%-12.57%. Japan …0.69% +1. Yen slightly better at 104.60…1/3’s 105.44 weakest since 10/1/08!!!

Gold had a very narrow ‘inside’ session and closed at $122*.40 +$4.10, following Monday’s ‘outside day’ which had a high of $1247.70, highest since 12/16. Jan. 2’s low of $1181.40 – A MULTI-DECADE LOW!!!  Recent high is $1375.40 back on 9/19. $1200 is sup while $1300 is psychological resistance with major res at the 40 day ($1237!) and the 50 day ($1253!). The 200 day is $1341. Overnight it is rallying, post payrolls at $1240.5070 +$11.16 – session high $1245!

Crude crushed again falling to $91.24 – lowest since 5/2/12!!! – before a dead cat bounce took it back to $91.66 -.66!!! close at $92.33 – talk about a ‘bad day at Black Rock! Down and downer? Note 12/27 was first time above $100 since 10/21! On 11/27 it printed a new low of $91.77, lowest since 6/3!!! The record high of $114.83 was on 5/2/11, the low since on 10/4/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. It is way below the three key m/a’s which are now major res: 40 day m/a ($95.86!!!), 50 day (95.74!), and the 200 day ($99.01!!!) – the 40/50 still falling and all major resistance! 4/18’s low of $85.61 was lowest since 12/11! The recent range is $85.61-$112.24 since March 1, 2012. Overnight it is up but meaninglessly to $92..98 +$1.32 with a high following payrolls of $93.38.

Overnight markets (post payrolls):  

European equity markets STRONG, Asia not so much, Korea remains weak: UK +0.9% vs +0.1% vs -0.4% vs +0.5% vs +0.1%; France +0.8% vs – vs -0.1% vs +0.4% vs -0.1%; Germany +0.8% vs +0.2% vs -0.1% vs +0.6% vs +0.1%; Japan +0.2% vs -1.5% vs +1.9% vs -0.6% vs -2.4%; Hang Seng +0.3% vs -0.9% vs +1.3% vs +0.1% vs -0.6% vs -2.2%!!!; Korea -0.4% vs -0.7% vs flat vs +0.3% vs +0.4% vs -1.1%! vs-2.2%!!!India +0.2% vs -0.1% vs +0.2% vs -0.5% vs -0.3% vs -0.2% vs -1.2%! U.S. stock futures were pretty strong then plummeted to losses before rebounding to a slight gain…caution: DOW +20 from +68 (range 82); SPX +3.30 from +9 (13); NDQ +7.50 from +25! (33).

 

Some random thoughts:

The Wolf of Wall Street redux: NPR interviewed Leonardo DeCaprio this morning. He did not feel the movie glorified Belfort and said he really likes the guy! Now do you believe TB that there will be college kids dying to get into this ‘fun’ business. It makes TB sick! DeCaprio you damnable fool!

Chris Christie may have shot himself in the foot…we still don’t know but even if he jested to his staff…which he is wont to do…he may have caused them to act the way they did. We may never know but as TB said about Jamie Dimon:  ethics start at the top…the only way to get ahead is to do the bosses bidding…or what you perceive that is.

But this is also a very political attack, after all the stakes are high. Remember the IRS scandal? The right succeeded in creating a stir that it was Obama’s fault (as they did with Benghazi) and despite the fact that the Commissioner was checking all PAC filings, since they were predominantly conservative, the smoking gun appeared to be there. Now we know Obama wasn’t involved…and to TB’s way of thinking…thanks to the idiotic and politically motivated Citizens United ruling, someone needs to find out who is behind these PACS. We know…Karl Rove, Koch brothers, and the usual suspects. Even Sandra Day O’Connor was appalled at the ruling. Besides, the negative lies generated to nothing but create disinformation for the electorate to sift through. We should all be ashamed.

So let’s let the dust settle on Christie, and see what emerges…deal?…or no deal?

Have a great weekend!

TB

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